Sunday, January 21, 2007

non-spiritual spirituality

Following up on the Wilber-Aurobindo mashup, why I don't write on spiritual issues very much. Even though I'm studying to be a priest.

For one thing, I take really seriously Wilber's charge that all writings, especially spiritual ones, that do not locate experience via post-metaphysical semiotics is metaphysics. Metaphysics hides egocentric avoidance--it is non-dialogical. Even postmodernism has its own metaphysics, never asking where interpretation, contexts, arise from.

So I write in my own metaphysical form on politics, environment, and the rest because I can give a (hopefully) turquoise-ish response to issues and thinking has developed to where that can be dealt with on a regular basis.

Mystery of Existence writes eloquently, far more eloquently than I ever could, on spiritual experience. If that is what people are looking for, just go to the pros.

Though not a criticism, just an observation, it is still (mostly) individual description of experience--phenomenological modernism. Perception is semiotic---semiotics itself is perspectival. Perspectives are......?

Godwin writes metaphysics, by his own admission, which is beautiful in its way, but is just dumped on the reader. By its non-intersubjective format, it can simply call forth those who for whatever reason who already vibe with that frequency. It requires a spiritual hero to sally forth--hence Godwin's self-reference as dear leader (somewhat tongue-in-cheek, somewhat not) and the comments section. There are more reach arounds there than a NY swinger's party.

My buds at Buddhist Geeks dialogue around a topic--for example this really excellent one on concentration. But it is not really a questioning of questioning. It never asks about the ground from which the question itself arises--it assumes its place (a good one for sure) in the universe, assumes its perspective, the backdrop of concentration-Buddhism.

Again none of this is criticism just observation. My own desire is for something else. That something else, which isn't really explainable, is a product or my own spiritual inquiry with close friends. With experiences of so-called enlightened communication and being a part of a matrix where meaning is created and recognized in real-time.

The blog can not reproduce that, so I don't know what to say else. Nothing else spiritually is interesting to me. The actual experiences that occur are really un-interesting to me--I come mostly from the John of the Cross-Meister Eckhart school of apophaticism, experiences as such are not delved into very much. The love beneath them, the service in the world, the practice of abnegating oneself is more important in this frame.

And talking about how much and how great I am at abnegating myself would self-destruct the whole thing and be egocentric in being un-egocentric.

What occurred to me this morning is that the space I'm interested in doesn't have the technological (right-hand) embodiment yet such that it could be imparted in the way I intuit.

As it stands now, we have hyperlinks, which immediately link to the exterior-world of websites, op-eds, statistics, wikis, etc. But what about a inner-link, that wouldn't just link to an already interpreted, already metaphysically and unilaterally decided upon, but link the actual injunction, worldspace and inner felt sense/meaning/awareness pointed to.

A psychoactive display mechanism. Allusions to The Matrix or the Singularity apply--3rd tier technology to support and help "shine through" 3rd-tier consciousness.


At 7:01 PM, Blogger Joe Perez said...

Hi CJ - on not writing about spiritual issues much: I'm totally with your inclinations. However I would tend to frame it in the opposite way: that everything I write is spiritual. I tend to write about religion quite a bit simply because it's such a source of conflict in the world and in my historical growth, but I don't equate talking religion with talking spiritual. As an aside, I have a real problem with "theological" discourse for what sounds like the same reason you mention with regard to spiritual issues: it's not post-metaphysical. Therefore I find it too fuzzy to really wrap my mind around.

I like where you seem to be heading -- "experiences of so-called enlightened communication and being a part of a matrix where meaning is created and recognized in real-time" but I would encourage you to continue to try to explain it. For the benefit of others, if for no other reason.

P.S.: You got a broken link to Until which is at

also, speaking of Integral notation, I just added three "readings" of the State of the Union address here:

P.S.: on your remark that my Integralesque notation doesn't reveal "how he got there nor does reading those words reveal the injunction." consider my perspective: the words ARE the practice; the INJUNCTION is Whole Writing (i.e., follow a similar practice to mine of writing your best insights into your own consciousness development, and then "map" your writing to the degree and extent that you are able according to a common map (i.e., Integral theory, Kronology, etc.)

As for not explaining "how I got there," well there IS my memoir! About 350 pages! True, it won't be published until May, but just thought it's worth mentioning. Not to mention my other book, another 200 pages! But not everyone is so interested in the HOW just so they can get somewhere close on their own they don't need an account of my own psychological and spiritual development in order to "touch base" with.

As for the HOW of the 12 stations of life, I'm leaning heavily on Wilber's Integral Spirituality for now. I'm continuing to write more all the time on how my perspective builds on Wilber's AQAL, so eventually I'll get enough in writing so that it will make good sense to an integrally informed reader. For now, I hope readers consider the act of reading a Whole Write as similar to the act of watching a Vipassana meditation. You can get quite a bit out of watching and attempting to emulate, even without a "how-to book" on the practice.

best wishes always,


At 9:12 AM, Blogger CJ Smith said...


Thanks for the comment. I thought about what you said, and decided to delete the pieces relevant to your work.

And thanks for the challenge to flesh out my own workings and bring my consciousness to my writing.




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