Re: virus: Prisoners my Derrida!

Fri, 19 Mar 1999 11:05:20 -0800

David McFadzean wrote:
> At 10:06 AM 3/19/99 -0800, KMO wrote:
> >Andreas Engström wrote:
> >> If you follow faith it's not easy to
> >> concede that your faith lead you wrong..
> >
> >I hope the excerpt from Schick and Vaughn prompts a re-evaluation of
> >your assertion.
> I think the excerpt shows that the Dalai Lama has no faith in Buddhism

It only means that his faith is not of the simplistic formulation bandied about on this list. When you find yourself arguing that the Dali Lama has no faith in Buddhism because he is not wedded to every particular assertion that has worked its way into the Buddhist cannon, you might want to take that as an indication that your definition of faith needs some expanding.

> (which is not inconsistent with the tenets of Buddhism as far as I know)
> so it actually supports Andreas's assertion. What was your interpretation?

My interpretation is something I've been trying to articulate since I re-entered the disscussion a few weeks ago. So far, I see no indication that I've prompted anyone to honestly consider the possiblity that their notion of faith, on which they have passionate feelings, could be expanded in a way that would cause them to realize that their catagorical antagonism is not the best approach to the topic, but I'll keep trying.

> >Here's an axiom of mine that is not on the table for examination. It is,
> >for me, sacred:
> >
> >It is better to live consciously than unconsciously even when, as is
> >often the case, conscious living results in suffering that the
> >unconscious do not experience or do not experience as accutely.
> I share your belief but I don't hold it dogmatically.

The word "dogma" is so heavily laden with negative associations that asking someone on this list "Why do insist on being dogmatic?" is about as likely to prompt someone to undertake a project of serious self-evaluation as asking "Why do you insist on being such an asshole?"

Do I strike you as someone who is dogmatic in his thinking? Does the fact that I'm not interested in re-evaluating my fundamental moral principles make me into an unthinking meme-bot?

> What are the
> advantages of making it sacred?

It is not an article of faith because I weighed the costs and benefits of beleiving it vs giving tentative acceptance. I did not DECIDE to make it an article of faith.

Someone can present me with a iron-clad logical argument to the that working counter to the expansion of consciousness will get me more money, pussy, fame, power, rhetorical finesse, and health, but that would, for me, be no argument in favor abandoning my axiom. Valuing consciousness, for me, is not a means to an end. There's no point in evaluating whether it's the best way to get me where I want to go. It's not where I'm going; it's who I am.