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 Post subject: Re: Real Thinkers
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Greetings Jim George,

You ask:
Jim George wrote:
My hope is that by submitting my will to God he will enable me to discover the more perfect way for me and I will sometime discover he has led me to do what I now see as too formal. How about you?


I don't see prayer as formal, if that's what you mean. You stated that prayer is "a process that to me would seem mechanical and unreal". I'm a little bit shocked by that, frankly. The prayer that I know is not mechanical, unreal or formal at all, not even a little bit.

Prayer is the cry of the heart attempting to communicate with the divine Spirit within. Formal prayer is not spontaneous and individualized, but the prayer of the soul is. Prayer is the juice running through the vine, which if always connected to the source, will produce only good things. Prayer is the heart of the soul, it's rhythm seeks to attune to its Maker. Prayer is the only way to discover the "more perfect way", as you say. And that is because prayer flows both ways, back and forth between the soul and God. You ask and he answers, you seek he provides, but only if you stay connected with ceaseless prayer, if the channels of communication stay open and flowing.

Prayer induces the human ego to look both ways for help: for material aid to the subconscious reservoir of mortal experience, for inspiration and guidance to the superconscious borders of the contact of the material with the spiritual, with the Mystery Monitor. 91:3:5

In Friendship,
Rexford


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Rexford,

"I don't see prayer as formal, if that's what you mean." That is not at all what I meant or said. Why you appear to choose contention rather than construction in your comments is confounding to me. You chose to misunderstand my intent so you could contest by approach. I have no desire to debate you, discuss yes, debate no.

Can you explain to me the difference in your own personal experience between true spiritual insight and intellectual rational thought as revealed in the Urantia Book, without quoting the Urantia Book? Let's start there. If we purport to know what we are talking about let's do what we say, not merely say what we do. The world awaits!

Jim


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Greetings Jim George,

Such condescension! What exactly did I say that makes you think that I'm interested in "contention rather construction". All I did is explain my personal experience with prayer. My post was meant to share something about me, not you.

Your words sound rather defensive to me, but for no reason that I can find. What is it about prayer that upsets you so much? More to the point, why does my view of prayer cause you to see red? If I misinterpreted you, why not graciously correct me rather than accuse me of the crime of misunderstanding as though it were a premeditated personal attack? Sir, you do yourself a great disservice with such ad hominem. And what is it about using quotes that bothers you so much?

Prayer is an exaltation of intellection and an enrichment of thought. Prayer is the gateway to spiritual insight. Prayer and worship are techniques of reflective thinking, thinking which reflects the Spirit within. Real thinkers pray. I DO pray. I DO worship. I DO what I say. What you do is your business, not mine.

Prayer is designed to make man less thinking but more realizing; it is not designed to increase knowledge but rather to expand insight. Worship is intended to anticipate the better life ahead and then to reflect these new spiritual significances back onto the life which now is. Prayer is spiritually sustaining, but worship is divinely creative.143:7:4-5

In Friendship,
Rexford


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So few mortals are real thinkers; you do not spiritually develop and discipline your minds to the point of favorable liaison with the divine Adjusters.


Rexford,

I am so sorry if I offended you with my directness. My intent was to address the above comment with the following;

"So in my mind, what I posted is a revelation of how I pray. I try to see eye to eye with my Thought Adjuster. My hope is that by submitting my will to God he will enable me to discover the more perfect way for me and I will sometime discover he has led me to do what I now see as too formal. How about you? I am constantly attempting to discover the more effective process in communicating with God. But even that is my own subjective evaluation of what I am able to do. I am sure you find the same problem in effecting the reality of these teachings in your own life and soul. I believe we all do."

Then I said the foreboding words, "mechanical and unreal". The following list is what I was referring to. I do not go through this list every time I pray to make sure I have covered the entire topic to its spiritual fullness. That, to me, would seem mechanical and unreal!

196:0.10 Jesus brought to God, as a man of the realm, the greatest of all offerings: the consecration and dedication of his own will to the majestic service of doing the divine will. Jesus always and consistently interpreted religion wholly in terms of the Father’s will. When you study the career of the Master, as concerns prayer or any other feature of the religious life, look not so much for what he taught as for what he did. Jesus never prayed as a religious duty. To him prayer was a sincere expression of spiritual attitude, a declaration of soul loyalty, a recital of personal devotion, an expression of thanksgiving, an avoidance of emotional tension, a prevention of conflict, an exaltation of intellection, an ennoblement of desire, a vindication of moral decision, an enrichment of thought, an invigoration of higher inclinations, a consecration of impulse, a clarification of viewpoint, a declaration of faith, a transcendental surrender of will, a sublime assertion of confidence, a revelation of courage, the proclamation of discovery, a confession of supreme devotion, the validation of consecration, a technique for the adjustment of difficulties, and the mighty mobilization of the combined soul powers to withstand all human tendencies toward selfishness, evil, and sin. He lived just such a life of prayerful consecration to the doing of his Father’s will and ended his life triumphantly with just such a prayer. The secret of his unparalleled religious life was this consciousness of the presence of God; and he attained it by intelligent prayer and sincere worship — unbroken communion with God — and not by leadings, voices, visions, or extraordinary religious practices.

If you will take a moment to reread my offering, you may realize that I referred to the process of seeking God's wisdom and truth and even stated that what I said was a revelation of how I pray. In referring to the words "mechanical and unreal" I had intended to say that the list above would be realized, not by literally going down the list to make sure I was following all the points referred to but that by sincerely seeking God I would be shown in the end that I had accomplished the same thing. You were apparently "shocked". I have no idea why that shocked you. I do not wonder as I pray if I am effectively not able to be itemized in my mind as I endeavor to make real contact with my Thought Adjuster. I then asked if you do the same and you took issue, and seemingly disregarded the import of my post (small though it may be) and went off in a different direction.

So with that said I would like to readdress the above.

I am persuaded that the term "real thinkers" is not to be taken lightly. The Solitary Messenger says that we are not "real thinkers" (if) "[We] do not spiritually develop and discipline your minds to the point of favorable liaison with the divine Adjusters." Who do you suppose he is addressing? That, to me is an indictment . . . of me! I take that as an opportunity to peer into my own soul to discover what he is talking about. Implicit in this statement is the fact that we could be "real thinkers" by his definition if we would only decide to allow ourselves to give up our lack of discipline and open our minds to what we clearly do not know; God. In doing that we might actually realize "favorable liaison with the divine Adjuster." I submit that the entire Urantia Book tells us we can do this and expects us to do so. Then it announces that we are supposed to show the world the difference. It is Jesus' gospel. Jesus' gospel is much more than, but at least, a different way of thinking; we need to be real thinkers, not merely people who think about reality. It is a way of putting God first and us last. Again I apologize for my offense. Please forgive me. Obviously I have a ways to go yet.

Jim


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 Post subject: Re: Real Thinkers
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Greetings Jim,

I think we all have a way to go, so no problem. I'm still confused with a few things you said, but on the whole, I pretty much agree with you. Please don't think I'm being argumentative. I'm just trying to understand you better. You wrote the following:

Jim George wrote:
"So in my mind, what I posted is a revelation of how I pray. I try to see eye to eye with my Thought Adjuster. My hope is that by submitting my will to God he will enable me to discover the more perfect way for me and I will sometime discover he has led me to do what I now see as too formal. How about you?


I still do not understand what you mean by "too formal". What is it that you see as too formal? Do you mean that your current approach to God may not be as a partner and friend, but more solemn and decorous? If so, I agree that the closer I get to God, the fewer barriers there are, the more open and honest I am because I realize there is nowhere to hide and no reason to hide either. Is that what you're talking about, because I really don't know what you're saying there?

Then there's this:
Jim George wrote:
Then I said the foreboding words, "mechanical and unreal". The following list is what I was referring to. I do not go through this list every time I pray to make sure I have covered the entire topic to its spiritual fullness. That, to me, would seem mechanical and unreal!


Did I give you the impression that my prayers are a grocery list of items to be checked off? I hope I didn't give that impression. I don't have a list when I pray. When I pray, it's like Jesus said, "just a little talk with my Father in heaven." I blabber to him like I would my own father on earth, if he were still alive. I share my heart, mind and soul with him. God hears the intention of my prayer, not an itemized list of the things I want. It's more of a fellowship and communion rather than supplication. The only thing I ask for is the wisdom to know his will and the courage to carry it out. Otherwise, it's a inner sharing of myself with him. I don't know how else to describe it. We share with each other because we're partners, much more than best friends.

My prayer never ceases. It is a continuous sharing of my inner life with my partner in life. And as far as I understand it, that is the meaning of doing God's will, as indicated in the quote below:

The doing of the will of God is nothing more or less than an exhibition of creature willingness to share the inner life with God—with the very God who has made such a creature life of inner meaning-value possible. Sharing is Godlike—divine. God shares all with the Eternal Son and the Infinite Spirit, while they, in turn, share all things with the divine Sons and spirit Daughters of the universes. 111:5:1 

In Friendship,
Rexford


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Rexford,

It seems to me that your issues and lack of understanding of me are because of a trait of mine to use metaphors, even actual quotations as metaphors, for specific thoughts. I was attempting to say that the inner life of me communicating with God is so deep and subjectively personal that describing it even in the terms listed as the results of Jesus’ praying are more structured than I am able to deal with in those deeply personal moments. I seek a more naturalistic flow of my subjective consciousness. Since I did not have a real sense of who you were (and still don’t, but I am getting better) I was just throwing something out to see what took. Communication in this blog world requires great effort to tune our broadcasts to the receivers of those with whom we are attempting to communicate. You seem to me to be more precise and concise in your understanding while I am generalizing scene describer. I see reality in pictures and seek the understanding in others through subjective means rather than rationality as you seem to do.

Now, if you will, back to the origin of our conversation. What are “real thinkers”? What is the point the Solitary Messenger was trying to make? “So few mortals are real thinkers” then he describes the act of willingly interacting with our divine Adjuster. You commented in such a way as to make me think you either assumed we who read the Urantia Book are all real thinkers or at least, many of us, or else I am confused and led to conclude that you don’t put much stock in his comment. My personal take is that the actuality of “real thinking” refers to our ability to willingly transcend our natural bias toward rationality and logic as the building blocks of our comprehension of reality and allow ourselves to be directed by our divine Adjuster to perceive reality in ways only he can show us. This is tough ground to explain and one of the main conundrums of spiritual reality. We lack mota. The only reality we are able to actualize is faith which leads to experience, spiritual experience. And spiritual experience is only realized when we are confident enough in our faith to make the irrational but actual faith jump across the unknowable canyon where mota lives to the realization of spiritual reality consciousness on the other side. Can this be done on terra firma? All humans who have fused with their divine adjusters in the flesh would say “Yup!” it can. That is the process of being a real thinker to me and one that I subscribe to. We will see if it works when I get to Mansonia #1. Being 69 now I can see the end of my time on Urantia as a real event and look forward to that graduation. I doubt I will last much more than 20 years here. Nobody in my family has made it past 87. In the mean time I focus on “real thinking” as much as I can imagine and subsequently hope to realize much more completely upon graduation.

Also, in the meantime and while I am still relatively cognizant of my mind and spiritual realities I attempt to seek the deeper topics in others. I still work full time as an oilfield supervisor and I teach a weekly bible study and lead our men’s group as well as preach once a month at our church. Anybody who wants to know God is my focus regardless of whether they desire to know the Urantia Book. I believe that was Jesus’ approach as well. Real thinkers are not always real seekers. Some are latent and need to be inspired. So that is what I try to do.

I hope that helps you to have a better focus on me that our communication will be facilitated by it.

Jim


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Jim, didn't you mean real seekers aren't always real thinkers?


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Thanks for pointing that out noD but I was referring to those who have the propensity to explore without the drive or motivation or who have been overwhelmed by bullies. I believe there is a latent desire to be a "real thinker", to discover reality in personal experience, in many more people that merely those who exercise that talent. You are right though to say that more real seekers are not real thinkers either in that they are students of the hunt not students of their souls. Both types need inspiration and support to overcome their fears.

Thanks

Jim


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Greetings Jim,

You wrote:
Jim George wrote:
Rexford,Now, if you will, back to the origin of our conversation. What are “real thinkers”? What is the point the Solitary Messenger was trying to make? “So few mortals are real thinkers” then he describes the act of willingly interacting with our divine Adjuster. You commented in such a way as to make me think you either assumed we who read the Urantia Book are all real thinkers or at least, many of us, or else I am confused and led to conclude that you don’t put much stock in his comment.


Yes, you are confused as to my thinking on the subject. I do put much stock in the comment. I believe I made it clear that real thinking is a form of praying, a reflective, meditative, spiritualized form of thinking. Even nonreaders of the Urantia Papers are capable of this form of real thinking.

The divine spirit makes contact with mortal man, not by feelings or emotions, but in the realm of the highest and most spiritualized thinking. 101:1.3

Jim George wrote:
My personal take is that the actuality of “real thinking” refers to our ability to willingly transcend our natural bias toward rationality and logic as the building blocks of our comprehension of reality and allow ourselves to be directed by our divine Adjuster to perceive reality in ways only he can show us.


That's nice, but reality has multiple levels, one of them is logic or reasoning. If you recall, there are only three elements in universal reality and one of them is intellectual (see quote below).

There are just three elements in universal reality: fact, idea, and relation. The religious consciousness identifies these realities as science, philosophy, and truth. Philosophy would be inclined to view these activities as reason, wisdom, and faith — physical reality, intellectual reality, and spiritual reality. We are in the habit of designating these realities as thing, meaning, and value. 196:3:2  

Jim George wrote:
Can this be done on terra firma? All humans who have fused with their divine adjusters in the flesh would say “Yup!” it can. That is the process of being a real thinker to me and one that I subscribe to.


So, are you defining real thinking as trying to fuse with your Adjuster? Personally, I don't worry about that. My goal is to stay connected to the vine. I trust God to do what is best in terms of our relationship. My concern is that I live up to his expectations. And I don't worry about graduating to Mansonia either since we start there exactly where we leave off here. Best to concentrate on what's going on right here and now, in my opinion.

On the mansion worlds the resurrected mortal survivors resume their lives just where they left off when overtaken by death. 47:3:1  

Jim George wrote:
I hope that helps you to have a better focus on me that our communication will be facilitated by it.


Thanks Jim, for sharing yourself with me. I appreciate it very much.

In Friendship,
Rexford


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I don't think it's possible to do sustained thinking about anything without affecting change in your soul.

Thinking is questioning, and questioning is openness to change. Someone who questions wants an answer.

If you aren't questioning, you aren't thinking. If the end of your thoughts are determined by their beginning and run a predictable course, you aren't thinking you are just repeating the consequences of some thinking you did in the past. Most people do the minimum amount of thinking they can get away with, and their actions are determined on that narrow basis.


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Greetings Redtread,

You wrote:
Redtread wrote:
I don't think it's possible to do sustained thinking about anything without affecting change in your soul.


So, do you mean I can sit here all day and think about grass growing or paint drying and affect change in my soul? How will that kind of thinking affect my soul, except to numb it? Sustained thinking about nothing has been done for eons by some meditators, and they've missed the boat entirely. I suppose their souls have been affected, but affected negatively.

The kind of sustained thinking that affects the soul positively has to involve divine meanings and values; it has to involve a relationship with Deity; it has to involve the goal of divinity attainment; it has to involve the personality and choices. The soul is the spirit perceiving part of mind. Soul consciousness requires a separate intellect than the material mind. The material mind is merely the gateway to the mind of the soul, the supermind, where it matters greatly how, what and why one thinks. Thinking there is supermaterial, it is spiritual insight, the thought mechanism of the soul, and spiritual insight is God-Consciousness. Consciousness of growing grass and drying paint won't exactly cut it in the soul where it's all about relations and truth. That grass and paint must have cosmic spiritual meaning and value in order to affect the soul.

In Friendship,
Rexford


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I would proffer that thinking within a state of wonder and curiosity and consideration of the inter-relatedness of anything should add to soul or at least contribute to insights of a transcendent nature. Let's take watching grass grow as example. If one were to think about the miracles of seed, soil, water (ahhh...there's a contemplation - two gases forming liquid!), sunshine, color, decay, and the cycle of life as a miracle to behold...then, watching grass grow is quite the stimulation for the discovery of meanings and values that can be easily extended to far more relationships and truths therein and thereby.

That would be far more profitable than staring into one's navel. I know. I've tried both....hahaha!

Thinking IS an act and one with reciprocal effects. Careful what we think about. Careful indeed.

Which is only to say I do not disagree with anyone's position presented so far...... 8)


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Well said Van, contemplation can begin anywhere.

Rexford,

Thanks for your reply.

To picture isolated ideas in your mind, such as the idea of grass growing, or the idea of paint drying, is not the same as thinking about grass growing, or thinking about paint drying is it? Thinking necessarily engenders questions, and questions necessarily find their way back to the first source and center. This is the evolutionary process of mind, which begins by thinking about rocks and sticks, and ends with deep knowledge of the Father.

You said it yourself-thinking about nothing has been done by eons without much if any benefit for the meditators. I'm not suggesting you think about nothing. Consider these words from Wallace D. Wattles:

Quote:
Thinking is the hardest and most exhausting of all labor; and hence many people
shrink from it. God has so formed us that we are continuously impelled to thought; we
must either think or engage in some activity to escape thought. The headlong,
continuous chase for pleasure in which most people spend all their leisure time is only
an effort to escape thought. If they are alone, or if they have nothing amusing to take
their attention, as a novel to read or a show to see, they must think; and to escape
from thinking they resort to novels, shows, and all the endless devices of the
purveyors of amusement. Most people spend the greater part of their leisure time
running away from thought, hence they are where they are. We never move forward
until we begin to think.
Read less and think more. Read about great things and think about great questions
and issues. We have at the present time few really great figures in the political life of
our country; our politicians are a petty lot. There is no Lincoln, no Webster, no Clay,
Calhoun, or Jackson. Why? Because our present statesmen deal only with sordid and
petty issues - questions of dollars and cents, of expediency and party success, of
material prosperity without regard to ethical right. Thinking along these lines does not
call forth great souls. The statesmen of Lincoln’s time and previous times dealt with
questions of eternal truth, of human rights and justice. Men thought upon great
themes; they thought great thoughts, and they became great men.
Thinking, not mere knowledge or information, makes personality. Thinking is growth;
you cannot think without growing.
Every thought engenders another thought. Write one idea and others will follow until
you have written a page. You cannot fathom your own mind; it has neither bottom nor
boundaries. Your first thoughts may be crude; but as you go on thinking you will use
more and more of yourself; you will quicken new brain cells into activity and you will
develop new faculties. Heredity, environment, circumstances, all things must give way
before you if you practice sustained and continuous thought. But, on the other hand, if
you neglect to think for yourself and only use other people’s thought, you will never
know what you are capable of; and you will end by being incapable of anything.


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Greetings Redtread,

In regards to this:
Redtread wrote:
To picture isolated ideas in your mind, such as the idea of grass growing, or the idea of paint drying, is not the same as thinking about grass growing, or thinking about paint drying is it? Thinking necessarily engenders questions, and questions necessarily find their way back to the first source and center. This is the evolutionary process of mind, which begins by thinking about rocks and sticks, and ends with deep knowledge of the Father


I have to disagree. Not all questions "necessarily find their way back to the first source and center." Thinking and asking questions about material things lead to the material level of existence only. In order to think and ask questions that lead you to God, you have to think and ask questions about God. The human mind focused only on physical reality cannot achieve spiritual levels of thought.

Mortal mind subservient to matter is destined to become increasingly material and consequently to suffer eventual personality extinction . . . 1:3:7

Thinking about grass and paint will not help you find God at all. You will find grass and paint. Grass and paint are things. Things alone have no value unless they are given meaning. You must consider the landscaper and the painter, along with all the moral and personality issues involved in the various levels of relations if you hope to attain spiritual levels of thought. Thought without personality is mechanical. Personality is what brings in the love factor and love is what introduces the mind to relations. Don't forget this quote:

Religion must continually labor under a paradoxical necessity: the necessity of making effective use of thought while at the same time discounting the spiritual serviceableness of all thinking. 102:3:1

Then there's this next quote, an instance where the Papers actually quote a human philosopher, Blaise Pascal.

"Human things must be known in order to be loved, but divine things must be loved in order to be known." 102:1:1

Not all thinking is serviceable when it comes to finding God. Mechanical thinking will not cut it, even if it's full of questions and answers. You can think about grass and paint your whole life and never discover true values. Values are superhuman and supermaterial (111:4.2); they require superthinking, also known as worship (143:7.7) Although it is true that it is our thoughts that lead us to God, it is only our spiritualized thinking, soul thinking, that does so, (see quote below). Pure mind is mind responsive to divine mind gravity.

The divine spirit makes contact with mortal man, not by feelings or emotions, but in the realm of the highest and most spiritualized thinking. It is your thoughts, not your feelings, that lead you Godward. The divine nature may be perceived only with the eyes of the mind. But the mind that really discerns God, hears the indwelling Adjuster, is the pure mind. 101:1:3

An evolving human mind is responsive to mind gravity and is always being pulled toward Paradise. Receptivity to mind gravity involves more than just thinking and asking questions. The personality must also choose to worship. The ministry of the adjutants of worship and wisdom must make contact. This contact pulls the mind even higher, through the gift of the Holy Spirit. But this type of thinking involves morals and choices based upon them. There is no morality in growing grass or drying paint unless you involve personalities and how they relate to grass and paint.

Not all thinking is useful, and not all thinking leads to God. All you have to do is look at Stephen Hawking. There is a man who can do nothing but think and ask questions, yet it has not led him to God. In fact, all his thinking has led him to deny God. As I say, thinking only about material things will never elevate your mind off of the material level. Real thinkers pray. There is no other way.

In Friendship,
Rexford


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Beautifully said Rexford. I agree with nod that "...contemplation can begin anywhere." But note the two key words, "contemplation" and "begin"!!

Without the higher Adjutants fully engaged, all thinking is inferior...it may be clever, even mechanically insightful and creative but until thinking and thought is directed toward and directed by wisdom and worship, it is something that is disconnected from truth and reality.

My example proffered certainly shows connectivity to an appreciation in mind for the wonder and relationships and source in a search for meaning and value representative of creation itself...as creation and not as a mechanical system. Grass growing is a miracle within a larger miracle within all that is miraculous to a seeking mind which leads to worship of the Creator and makes such a "thinker" feel included in this family and circle of life. Contemplation without God at its center is a fruitless venture.

While Hawking thinks about the mechanical aspects of his observable universe, so many of our earliest and greatest scientists and thinkers/contemplators were not so blinded and had God firmly centered as source, center, upholder, revealer, and giver of all that was contemplated.

Great discussion. Thanks all. 8)


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