Myth in Todays Common Senses

How one myth is no better than the other—accepting what is, as what cannot be contradicted

“There are two great myths of the universe that lie in the psychological and intellectual backgrounds of all of us”. It is the most common, common-sense of today, but they are simply myths.

One; that the universe was made and has a governor. “That we exist only in sufferance as subjects of god, visitors here on probation where we are artifacts made, that do not exist in our own right. God alone exists in his own right, and you exist as a favor”—and you’d better be grateful!

“That you are a subject of the royal Monarch, the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords, an idea inherited from the political structures of the Tigress and Euphrates culture, and from Egypt”. That god is the big boss, who’s authority trickles down to the obedient governed.

The other myth that was popularized in the 19th century—that the universe is a fully automatic, random fluke. That after billions of years consciousness sprang from a special mixture of minerals, with just the right amount of seasoning, hot gas and voilet! You—are simply a result.

But suppose there is a third option—that there is no governor, nor that the world is an accident that spawned nature, “but that the universe is a self-governing organism that peoples from time to time”, the same way in which an apple tree apples, or a forest grows trees—that life is a symptom of the universe, the same way in which a flower breaks-forth without knowing how or why.

Either the earth is a mechanism of laws, which would either be governed by god, or be a mere spontaneous, automatic fluke with no purpose—or it is an organism—“and organisms are self-governing like your body—and life is a symptom of a universe”.

Not merely a guess as to how consciousness arises through the chain of elements, nor placating the senses by thinking a god who cares, the world as it is seen without contradiction, and the universe is without question, bearing fruit.

Areas in “quotation” compliments of Alan Watts, The nature of consciousness.

Pacific Crest Trail

Author: jim-

One minute info blogs breaking the faith trap.

59 thoughts on “Myth in Todays Common Senses”

    1. Really interesting article. “I> in Fenwick’s view, the brain does not create or produce consciousness; rather, it filters it”. This is an interesting way to put it. The Hindus have a much different idea of god, especially post-awakening. That god is not a deity, but the entire cosmos is one entity, an organism that has no governor, like your body, and we are symptoms that manifest of it.
      What runs what? The stomach or glands, the brain or lungs, all equally as important. You cannot have one without the other.
      We are like the eyes and ears, both participants and observers in a cosmic drama that doesn’t know it’s god any more than you do.
      As far as which comes first, its most likely neither. That it is one process and you cannot have either without the other.
      That article sums up pretty nicely how I feel. Like it was stated, its difficult to prove, but EVERYTHING else follows this line if action if you reason it out past our comfort zones.
      Take the big bang fo instance. Are we separate from it, way out here on the end? It feels like we are, but reason says no. We are all the bang still happening. These processes take a long long time, but everything is cycles. Is this the first and only big bang? Of course not. It is going to die, then it will do it again. Anything that can only happen once can never happen at all. That goes against the rise and fall of everything.
      Thanks Mary.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. For example, the eye filters and interprets only a very small sliver of the electromagnetic spectrum and the ear registers only a narrow range of sonic frequencies. Similarly, according to Fenwick, the brain filters and perceives only a tiny part of the cosmos’ intrinsic “consciousness.” Every sensory organ does this. Why should we rule out the brain that collects those properties?

      Liked by 1 person

        1. I might try that. What intrigues me the most about this line of dialog, it takes the path of least resistance. It is not trying to shoehorn in a deity (or a hypothesis with a bias intent to avoid the word “god” at all cost) automatically contradicting the nature of every single thing, but is a path of logical reason, that like god, may not be proven, but it doesn’t contradict its own assertions at all.
          Really to me there is probably only one serious philosophical question. Is it serious? I think the answer to that is no, it is not.
          This idea is not really new. Alan Watts, Buckminster Fuller and others, even GK Chesterton who was catholic has a poem about the million masks of god. The biggest hurdle for me is the current concept of the word god and all its connotations with islam, christianity and Judaism. But those prophets too, knew it was all one-thing but were limited and forbidden by culture and language to say what is readily admitted in Taoism, Hinduism, and Buddhism; “I and the father are one”. That you aren’t subject to it, but that you are it, and theres no one to blame. Without all the drama life would be incredibly boring.
          The trick is to keep it going and to make it fun. Thats the why! But everyone is so serious that they will eventually cut the vacation short.
          There are two ways this can end; we blow ourselves up by constantly meddling with it, or we all know the secret. If everybody knew the game and the outcome of the game, it would be incredibly boring. And like the ten-run rule in little league, we’d just call it a day.

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            1. I believe we are trained to see the world in a certain way that isn’t really what the world is. Even science is influenced by this cultural faux-pas of monotheism and the hebrew interpretation of the cosmos. Namely, that there are laws of god, now we have “laws of nature” (not true) that are simply regularities over a short span of time. Laws are segments off of a continuous event. Calculus attempts to define a world by chopping out demarcations of something that is a process with no ending.
              It is omnipotence. Omni- Potent. It doesn’t know how, it just does—like you growing you hair. How do you do that?

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          1. personally, i hesitate placing a human sentiment on something like the absolute. to say ‘It’ creates out of boredom, is just banale.

            according to Hinduism, the whole creation is made up of 3 qualities called gunas:
            1. sattva (goodness, constructive energy, harmony)
            2. rajas (passion, action, confusion),
            3. tamas (darkness, destruction, chaos)

            these three gunas are present in everyone and everything. for example, a spicy sauce at dinner, add rajas to the meal. too much rajas in a person will make him fiery or passionate. war, for example, would be tamas. too much tamas in a person would lead to laziness or destructive qualities. so on.

            so, there is nothing wrong with any of these qualities in themselves, and they are all contained in everything. however, it is the proportion between them that makes the difference. the interplay of these gunas defines the character of someone or something, of nature and determines the progress of life.

            when the gunas are in perfect balance, there is no manifestation. no need for anything. (so, no world appears). with even the slightest disbalance, manifestation occurs. it’s like… on a perfectly calm lake, a stone is thrown, and a lil wave forms.
            then ‘something’ can be observed.

            so, we are all here due to some ‘imbalance’, or rather, some desire. (all life springs out of desire- if we did not chose to Be, we would not be born). so the ultimate aim is to go back to that complete, fulfilled, whole state.
            ideally, the sattva (the harmonious, good, peaceful) state should be dominant. because it is the state that benefits all.

            the element of play is always there, yes, but it is not quite the whole story. and if you’re interested in cosmology, Hinduism has, undoubtedly, the most profound model.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hindu_cosmology

            Liked by 1 person

            1. He’s spent a lifetime as an ethnographer for national geographic and is a harvard botanist. He’s lived on-site with many indigenous tribes. Here is a favorite quote of his— Ethnosphere— “the sum total of all thoughts and intuitions, myths and beliefs, ideas and inspirations brought into being by the human imagination since the dawn of consciousness,” the ethnosphere is humanity’s greatest legacy”.

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            2. According to this line of reason, the good and the bad is your doing. How would you know one without the other? There would be nothing to measure against. Whats funny is everyone thinks its the other. Perfect for the longevity of the game. The polarity of today is an amazing contest of absurdity. I choose no sides.

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  1. I’m not able to have that as a before and after experience, but I assume (the dreaded word) that it is there for others whether I am or not. It no longer is there, say for my parents, but it was and it will be for others even after I am long gone.

    So are you saying even though it feels real for all the people and creatures alive at this moment,it is not reality or is not even there outside our minds?

    Like computer simulation theory

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      1. Sounds like a deepity: an apparently profound observation that is ambiguous. Where has it been established that the universe possesses a mental nature? Or that those who hold to such a position are on a path to mastery?

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        1. “established”?? what has really been established? even the structure of your chair is uncertain.

          like my quote says, it comes from the Kybalion, the hermetic philosophy of ancient Egypt and Greece.

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            1. One quite often hears people say “all things consist of matter”. They do not consist of matter. They are the specific, concrete forms of its manifestation. Matter as such is an abstraction. Looking for a uniform matter as the principle of everything is like wanting to eat not cherries but fruit in general. But fruit is also an abstraction. Matter cannot be contrasted to separate things as something immutable to something mutable. Matter in general cannot be seen, touched or tasted. What people see, touch or taste is only a certain form of matter. Matter is not something that exists side by side with other things, inside them or at their basis. All existing formations are matter in its various forms, kinds, properties and relations. There is no such thing as “unspecific” matter. Matter is not simply the real possibility of all material forms, it is their actual existence. The only property that is relatively separate from matter is consciousness as an ideal and not material phenomenon.

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          1. It matters not from whence the quote came; it matters only if it expresses facts that comport with reality. And I submit that it does not.

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            1. One doesn’t need to be an expert on the nature of reality to recognize bullshit — be it religious or philosophical — when you see it. 🙂

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            2. “Everything we call real is made of things that can’t be regarded as real”—Niels Bohr
              It appears your newtonianism isnt at all there when you break it all down. Only forms. There are no tiny granules of matter making ip the physical world.

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            3. quantum theory still sounds like bs to the common man.
              before you have any opinion on a subject, you should at least educate yourself a bit. the world is already drowning in ‘opinions’

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            4. The quote bears no relationship to quantum theory. And absent any empirical evidence that the universe possesses a mental nature, it too becomes just another fact free opinion swirling within a sea of fact free opinions.

              Liked by 1 person

            5. From the article:

              “Fenwick believes . . .”

              “Hence, in Fenwick’s view . . .”

              and

              Obviously, despite his impressive body of research into this subject, there is no current way to empirically establish the validity of Fenwick’s cosmic consciousness hypothesis. Ultimately, it aligns more with faith than science. Thus it seems the answer to the question in this post’s title is “No.” There is no empirically established explanatory framework for understanding how consciousness can exist independently and outside of the brain.

              So if I’m biased, I’d prefer to be biased towards the scientific method and empiricism — if for no other reason than those methods have had a much better track record in explaining the universe than their religious and mystic counterparts.

              YMMV

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            6. Turning the lens around to see the inside has baffled everyone for quite some time. Maybe he’s right, and the only way to know he’s right is it is the one thing that can’t be identified—By default.

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        1. Not everything depends on us or our “experience”. That verges on the arrogance of Christians who claim everything revolves around them and their relationship with an ineffable deity who yet somehow cares about their sex partners and whether they pray in the right way.

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  2. I don’t understand the big deal with consciousness. The larger and more intricate the brain, the more self awareness and conscious thought. And then you or the animal dies and it’s gone for good. It is a simply product of brains.
    There would be no purpose in it continuing.
    Now maybe if there is either parallel or multiverses, you exist in some of those too, but it’s not the “you” of here now on earth, but just an exact arrangement of atoms, but it will have its own consciousness while it is alive.

    I don’t believe in the governor, of course, but neither do I believe the “peopling” thing. To me it relates to something always existing and the state of nothing being impossible, but it’s still science. Once this almost nothingness ( perhaps a state that cannot be random ) began to coalesce then the randomness is in full force for an incomprehensible length of time from our perspective. Still no real purpose. It just is. My two cents anyway.

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    1. This comment is exactly the mythological trap of the intellectual side. Its not really even scientific. More neurons does equal greater processing power, but it isn’t more consciousness. Maybe a greater, more complex awareness. But no more conscious than a fly.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. How do you know this? Maybe in the magical mystical world of the Cosmic Consciousness which Is What it Is, the Dead Body is alive and doing a Cab Calloway ditty and dance! After all, plenty of mystical Masters of Woo claim to have been resurrected!

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  3. Time for a fourth option, courtesy of spiritual atheism, and for tildeb’s sake completely and admittedly out of left field, meaning my mind, and ONLY MY MIND:
    While the universe, or even larger, the cosmos “CONTAINS CONSCIOUNESS,” it is not itself conscious, nor will it ever be. There is no CREATOR, nor is life a “fully automatic, random fluke.” The universe does not “people,” if anything it “lives” in the sense that single-celled living beings continually find different ways to join and work together for the betterment of life itself, and of the billions, trillions, or quadrillions of species that have so far been tried, (many already abandoned because they were not able to survive in their own environments) the successful ones are those that are still here as I write this sentence. This does not guarantee its continued success, but for now it is still here.
    “EVERY LIVING CELL IN EXISTENCE has the potential to be conscious, and kind of like AI computers, the more cells that are added, the greater the potential to achieve consciousness. BUT, do not be humanocentric, or even primatocentric, even one-celled organisms can achieve consciousness given the survival period to develop the self-awareness that each living being is capable of.”–rawgod. (Quite a sentence, and I hope I wrote it correctly. It is not a simple condition, but nor must it be complex!)
    Looking back into the PRIMORDIAL SOUP wherein we like to believe life started on Earth, life was lived in billionths of seconds (How many parts can a second be divided into?), and in our human minds there was no time to gain awareness of self. BUT HOW LONG DOES A BEING NEED TO GRASP THAT IT IS CONSCIOUS? All it takes is an instant. But in that instant is grasped the idea of survival, of “extension of life” beyond the instant, into two instants, and three, and more. How long can a one-celled organism live? If I may be so bold, life, even in the Primordial Soup, lasted a “LIFETIME.” How long does a human live? One LIFETIME! So who lives longer? Neither.
    This begs the question, how much can a living being achieve in one lifetime? Whether the lifetime is a billionth of a second, or a billion billion seconds, one living being accomplishes exactly one lifetime’s worth of progression. Can it logically be any other way? The thing is, over the last 4.5 billion years or so that our scientists tell us is so, living beings have managed to learn to survive for longer and longer periods of time. Through experimentation, but more properly COOPERATÒN, living beings have managed to extend lifetimes to last billions or even trillions of seconds of life, depending on what species we are born into.
    So to find some kind of conclusion to this discussion, can someone please tell me why humans are abandoning COOPERATION in favour of individiality, when we know cooperation works.
    IS THIS HOW SPECIES COMMIT GENOCIDAL SUICIDE?

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      1. Through evolution. I guess I took that part for granted, sorry. One-celled organisms keep combining in various ways, trial-and-erroring their way into ever more complex organisms and somewhere along one of those lines is homo-sapiens. I am not trying to change anything about how humans evolved on Earth, nor am I saying evolution would take a similar path in other planetary primordial soups. It did on ours, and that is good enough for me. Going with the flow.
        We are conscious, but so are most lifeforms on our planet, not that we humans care to admit it. We want to think we are special. We are not.
        Good enough, or do you still require more?

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  4. In his classic work, “Gaia,” James Lovelock puts forth the idea, of earth as an organic being, i.e., a self-regulating system complete with its own forms of communication that work together to make this rock a habitable planet for life, which now includes Homo sapiens, so called, but maybe not for long.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Maybe it’s just me, but it seems like it is that obvious. Like a default starting position. How many runs have hominids had here anyway? Anything that can only happen once can never happen at all…

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  5. If a myth is a ‘traditional story, popular belief, or unfounded false notion’ (I want to add conspiracy theory, but best not), then I suppose the two are as you (or Watts) say.
    The third proposed organic myth seems as slippery a slope as “god did it.” I would file it under the “there’s something out there” category.
    Since #3 (organism) is neither traditional nor popular, I prefer to call all three hypotheses. Neither the God nor Watts’ ideas are testable, but the second, which I don’t agree with or accept either, at least you treated it, may be.
    So, if ya been humpin’ the Pac-C trail, have ya spotted Big Foot?
    Space dust, Jim. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, you can reason this all the way back to the big bang if you want to. You’re no visitor here in any regard, but a part of it. The deity thang, is too easily contradicted, yet I’m not certain why the hard academics would have such a problem with this as an organism. It meets all the criteria as one, and is completely self governing. Its only a slippery slope if your definition of god is from the hebrew bible.
      In this line of reasoning there is nothing that is not “god” for lack of a better term. The big bang started as one thing, and it sill is, one thing.

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  6. Why do you keep going back to this guy Watts? None of what you refer from him has any insight or legitimacy: it’s sloppy, disorganized, and lazy thinking that is proposing a supposedly mystical narrative that has absolutely no independent value, no means to test, but full of suppositions using false dichotomies, unfettered claims, and terminology that is at best fuzzy. In other words, it actually says nothing. It’s a giant obfuscation that has zero depth.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I am a bit surprised at you. So you’re saying essentially with your total dismissal, that god really does love us and it is a legitimate worldview to bow to the king of kings. That the Tigress and Euphrates cultures really were a display of the almighty?
      Or is it that you have some proof to refute any of the mythology I presented in the post. Can you mix up a little dust and minerals and make it think? You have no explanation of consciousness yet pretend (mythology) that it arises from combining a few chemicals and heat?
      So the most common senses and beliefs today are the best option? I actually enjoy the way Watts describes these myths and keeps it in context as myths, which is what it is. I see you had a lot of criticism yet offered nothing. Gaslighting, I think its called. Sloppy, disorganized, lazy, and so on, yet disprove none of it. I think you would really enjoy the link I provided. Really makes a lot more sense than you do right now.

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  7. Gee, re “God alone exists in his own right, and you exist as a favor”—and you’d better be grateful! … That you are a subject of the royal Monarch, the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords….” I wonder who benefits?

    In religion as well as politics “follow the money” seems to expose everything to a full understanding.

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    1. Sometimes you must “reload” the page before any “likes” by you show up. I’ve found this happens on several blogs … no idea why. I think it might have something to do with you being logged into your account, but I’m not sure … ?? I don’t think the problem exists if you’re reading the post on the Reader.

      WP can be ver-r-r-ry strange at times. 🙄

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      1. Indeed it can be strange, Nan. I know they’ve been playing around with the backend again recently, bug patches and things like that. I have a “platinum” commercial account with WP and it hosts my own site so often what I experience is different from what happens with the advertising supported free accounts.

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  8. now this is curious. I can’t “like” posts for some reason. When I click the like button an empty window pops up on the screen, immediately disappears, and nothing happens.

    So here’s one more “Like” even though it doesn’t seem to register when I try 🙂

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      1. It’s entirely possible it’s something with my system here. I run ad blockers and security software on top of the Chrome browser and this setup has issues with some websites

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