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Invisibleusefulidiot
It's notfascist, it's...Neoconservative!

Registered: 11/21/02
Posts: 732
Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political
    #3303029 - 11/01/04 12:57 AM (12 years, 11 months ago)

Commentary: Faith Instead of Reason

For George Bush, faith is more important than reality, and the will transcends any need to consider the facts.
By Scott D. O?Reilly

President Bush is not a man given to doubt. Faith, he believes, can not only move mountains, it can transform the world. This is powerful stuff, and it is at the heart of why so many Americans fervently support George W. Bush, even when it is clear that he has committed gross errors in judgment.

For Bush, and his followers, reality isn?t something you accommodate yourself to, it?s something you shape until the facts reflect your will. ?Reality,? to borrow a line from the classic black comedy Being There starring Peter Sellers, ?is a state of mind.?

Four years ago the Bush campaign began to impose its state of mind on the American people. An electoral deficit was no obstacle to their designs; the man who got half a million fewer votes than his opponent was able to convince the American people to accept the premise that examining disputed ballots would only ?cloud? the election. Thus, the election was not decided by the voters, but by the campaign excluding voters. As Joseph Stalin once remarked, ?The voters decide nothing; those who count the votes decide everything.?

The impartial media-sponsored recount showed that in a statewide recount Gore received more votes than Bush in the critical state of Florida. If it had been up to the voters -- both in Florida and the rest of the United States -- Gore would have been president. But as Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court William Rehnquist ruled, there is no guaranteed federal right to vote for president in America. Democracy, it appears, is just one state of mind among others, and one wave of the judicial magic wand is all it takes to undo the spell of democracy and make it disappear.

Convincing America to accept Bush?s version of the election on faith, rather than empirically examining the ballots, was one of the great conjuring tricks of our age. For the Bush campaign, success would be self-legitimizing; quickly shaping new realities would render old realities irrelevant. The Bush administration, however, has been far more successful is shaping the public?s perception of reality than in shaping reality itself.

One could say that the Bush administration succeeds precisely because it is so adept at denying reality. For Dick Cheney, deficits don?t matter; for Donald Rumsfeld, the insurgency in Iraq was confined to just a few dead-enders; for Paul Wolfowitz, Iraq?s oil revenue would finance Iraq?s own liberation; and for Bush, the continued violence in Iraq has been cited as proof we are succeeding. We are, to use the president?s words, victims of our ?catastrophic success.? Well, if that isn?t the mother of all understatements, oxymorons, and mixed-messages, all at the same time.

Notions of ?catastrophic success? and the idea that ?deficits don?t matter,? only produce cognitive dissonance for those unfortunate enough to have contact with the real world. But Bush lives in a virtual bubble, where his virtuous intentions are assumed sufficient to guarantee a good outcome.

This style of leadership hearkens back to the pre-Enlightenment era, where the moral character of a leader was assumed to be more important than his intellectual qualities. The thinking was that the head of state was God?s representative on earth and that the fortunes of the state would rise or fall depending on the extent to which the leader exercised his authority in keeping with God?s will.

This is a charismatic form of leadership -- personality matters more that political judgment -- and this kind of leadership does not have a good track record. In his landmark study, The Open Society and its Enemies, the philosopher Karl Popper delineated how detrimental the charismatic style of leadership is to social progress. When a leader?s policies and judgment cannot be questioned because it is presumed that the leader is exercising God?s will on behalf of his subjects, cataclysmic errors of judgment can arise because prudent checks and balances are forgone -- after all, a leader channeling a deity?s will should be enabled, not questioned.

Questioning a charismatic leader is tantamount to thwarting God?s will, at least from the pre-Enlightenment point of view. We can see this perspective at work in the Bush administration: When Joseph Biden, a democratic senator from Delaware, asked president Bush how he knew that invading Iraq was the right course, the president replied, putting his arm on Biden?s shoulder, ?My instincts. My instincts.?

You don?t have to doubt Bush?s sincerity to be concerned that he doesn?t even consider the possibility that he should offer a rationale or explanation for his decisions. On the resolution authorizing the use of force in Iraq, the president, as reported in Bob Woodward?s book Plan of Attack, simply told lawmakers, ?I want your vote. I?m not going to debate you on this.? In other words, ?I know what?s right, end of discussion.? This amounts to a faith-based foreign policy, and it helps explain why the Bush administration never even imagined some of the worst-case scenarios we now face in Iraq. The kind of thinking that deals with reasoned deliberation and probabilities (not certainties) is foreign to a faith-based style of leadership.

The Bush administration represents a decided shift -- some would say reversion -- from the Age of Reason, which emerged during the Renaissance, to the Age of Faith, which existed during the Middle Ages. Bush is unusually averse to proffering arguments designed to convince, relying instead on the trappings of his office, his personal magnetism, and his role as commander-in-chief to attract adherents. His message seems to be, ?I wouldn?t be here if God didn?t intend it, so trust me.?

The temptation to substitute faith for reason is strong, but it is contrary to what is best about the Christian tradition itself. The great Christian philosopher Saint Thomas Aquinas demonstrated most effectively that faith and reason were not antagonists, but allies, and that true articles of faith would not be contradicted by reason. If I were to sum up his philosophy I would say, ?Reason may be barren without some degree of faith, but faith without some degree of reason risks blindness.? The wisest leaders, surely, rely on both.

The need to temper faith with reason is well illustrated by a story told by the 19th century mathematician and philosopher William Clifford. Clifford asks us to imagine a ship owner who knows his ship could do with a costly inspection and repairs, but sincerely believes that Providence will see the ship and its passengers through on a difficult voyage. Clifford argues that the ship owner?s faith was not acquired ?by honestly earning it in patient investigation, but by stifling his doubts.? When the ship sinks, its owner?s guilt is not absolved by the sincerity of his faith; indeed, he is culpable precisely for substituting belief in place of practical measures.

I believe Clifford?s story speaks to the predicament that Bush?s leadership style presents. Bush?s personal faith may be quite admirable, but his certainty -- on Iraq?s WMD, for instance -- has proven demonstrably false. Faith is one thing. But stifling doubt because one doesn?t like reality is another. And I, for one, believe that George W. Bush no longer deserves the benefit of the doubt.


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OfflinetrendalM
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: usefulidiot]
    #3303720 - 11/01/04 07:46 AM (12 years, 11 months ago)

"God wants me to be President." -- GW Bush

Our predicament lies in the fact that apparently nearly half of the American people want this kind of a President...


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OfflineJacquesCousteau
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: usefulidiot]
    #3304281 - 11/01/04 12:26 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

Damn, it's about time someone put the whole thing into perspective like that...


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Invisiblegettinjiggywithit
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: usefulidiot]
    #3304433 - 11/01/04 01:29 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

Reason, we can make up any reasoning we want to. Reasons themseleves are just fabrications to serve a goal. What the fuck is the difference if you used reasons instead of "faith" to serve him in his goals? People would still buy into reasoning too if his goals served theirs.


Take faith up a notch and susppend all reasoning with this election. Can you be okay regardless of who gets voted in? Thats all one is to concern themselves with, then the rest won't matter unless you choose to make it matter with more frabricated reasoning that tells you it does matter or why it should.

I'm voting independent party tomorrow by the way and always do suprise suprise. I think the independent self matters! LOL


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Ahuwale ka nane huna.


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Offlinedmtrypr
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: gettinjiggywithit]
    #3304628 - 11/01/04 02:30 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

Blind faith is just that, blind. I feel like even though the "information superhighway" is at our fingertips, many people are unwilling or unable to consider reality as opposed to their own individual perspective. There is a sense that they are perhaps threatened by any deviation from their pre-conceived notions. If their notions, however, were essentially valid, information, reason, or rationality would not be seen as a threat, but as a bolster to an enlightened opinion. This obviously is not the case. Bush supporters were only able to accurately identify his position on 2 of 8 issues (Kerry supporters on the other hand 6 of 8). Bush rallies his "troops" by feeding their "group-think". As long as he unwaiveringly adheres to his position, no matter what the cost, his "troops" are satisfied. They rely on the ideas they have been given (by parents, religious leaders, etc.) to identify their persona. They fear that to change the idea risks a loss of the self-identity. This, however, is the ego self. The self that only is concerned with security and runs on fear and instinct. Studies of "ignorant" people have shown that their self-image is unnaffected by poor performance, contrary to what a more intelligent person might expect, the "ignorant" person actually becomes more confident of his/her performance in light of failure. I read this in a Communications Tech. textbook and it perfectly describes Bush and his typical adherent. The intelligent members of society should not be discouraged by those less fortunate to be blessed with higher faculties. We are still in the majority and only do not seem to be so because many of us are apathetic, disinterested, and disenfranchised by a system that has repeatedly failed us. It will only stop failing when we take charge and do something about it. We need to put our egos aside and look past our percieved differences. If we want to put a stop to the idiots who are currently at the helm of our nation, we need to vote for John F. Kerry. While some might say "oh, he's no better than Bush", they are absolutely wrong. The media has done a good job making Kerry out to be a wishy-washy political stiff, in reality he has led a life of compasion, intelligence, service, and goodness. You might say "Oh, he's rich like the rest of them", well, he worked hard as a lawyer and put in 20yrs as a senator to amass ~2-3million dollars. Thats not that much when you think about the fact that my father, who has been a firefighter for 20 years will collect ~1 million when he retires. Most of his money comes from Teresa Heinz, the only reason she is wealthy is because her husband, the heir to the Heinz ketchup fortune, died in a horrific plane crash. She turned her personal tragedy into a positive by instigating philanthropic endeavors and has donated millions to many charities. Both her and John are staunch environmentalists and are concerned with the state of our planet, not just for us, but for our children as well. I like what the independant, green party, etc. candidates say. I actually like Ralph Nader's position and think that he would be a great president. But the fact is, he WILL NEVER WIN THIS ELECTION. Maybe sometime in the future we will have a more open political system, but right now we don't. Don't throw away a vote that could help oust Bush because you want to make a statement. You can make a statement regarding your individuality in many ways, how you dress, how you conduct yourself, how you enjoy your free time, or by what you believe, but it is arrogant and egotistical to do so in a situation that absolutely requires anyone and everyone with a brain to help put a stop to the reign of ignorance.


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"There is no greater power in heaven and earth than the thought of the son of man. Though unseen by the eyes of the body,yet each thought has mighty strength, even such strength can shake the heavens." -Gospel of the Essenes


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InvisibleMoonshoe
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: dmtrypr]
    #3304649 - 11/01/04 02:37 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

now the way i see it there are 2 possibilities.

one is that the whole election/ democracy thing is an illusion designed to keep people happy, and make them think they have a choice, while corporate interests or some other behind the scenes force runs the show.

The other possibility is that the american people are actually MOSTLY morons, who PREFER a war mongering, destructinve, c- minus, dyslexic president who has done nothing but cause terrible suffering and damage at home and abroad. If this is the case, democracy and maybe even the world are doomed, as the whole concept of 'pwer to the people' just doesnt work when the people are ignorant, greedy and totally self centerd.


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Invisiblegettinjiggywithit
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: dmtrypr]
    #3304682 - 11/01/04 02:51 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

I agree with the insightful observation of the article. It is a wake up call to people and I'm glad it was posted.

But what if you saw this before hand? I don't want to get sucked in to the conflict of pointing fingers at BUSH any further then placing my vote for the Independent party. I live in Forida and there was talk of removing Nader from the ballot. I went through the fucken roof. These guys have people so brainwashed with the "wasted vote on the independent party" propaganda, that they actually got people moved enough to attempt to take my 3rd choice off the ballot. They even got YOU to tell me to vote for one of THEM instead of Nader. No way jose, all the more I am voting nader.

Its not about expressing individuality. Its about saying, I want a 3rd damn choice. I want at least fucking 7 choices. Who the fuck do they think they are to so arrogantly take it from me because "it's a wasted vote anyway"

That above post and yours can work a lot of people up and I wanted to redirect some of that energy. It's easy to feel helpless at the hands of a corrupt government, to become discouraged, and weakened.

How many posts are going up to help empower people over that?

From a higher perspective "spiritually speaking" I'm laughing my ass off enjoying the show. I guess I can because I have mine covered. Try moving into your neutral non partial observer self now and again.


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Ahuwale ka nane huna.


Edited by gettinjiggywithit (11/01/04 03:04 PM)


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InvisibleMoonshoe
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: gettinjiggywithit]
    #3304970 - 11/01/04 04:00 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

i think the situation is so drastic right now that we need to move  outside  the system to change it. THis involves forgetting about the once every for year single vote that you are handed and start making Real changes in your every day life. Every single word you speak and act you make can be a 'vote' for the world you want to see.

Be kind to your fellow man. Recycle. Turn off your lights when you leave. Drive less, bus and bike and walk more. Forgive. Meditate. Be aware. Turn off the TV, or at least mute the commericals. Grab a can of spray paint and make your own political advertisements. Educate yourself. Plant a vegetable garden. Shop organic. Get yourself to an activist retreat. Shop at local retailers rather than transnational corporations.

THEN vote, and DONT vote for bush.

Voting independent is important i think. Personally i would vote for kerry because i dont want to see bush back, but this itself is a trap. You see the system is so ingenius that we are forced to vote for the lesser of two evils, and the idea of voting for a dramatic change, an independent party is made to seem foolish and impossible. But if we dont start SOMETIME then well be trapped in this bullshit two party system forever.

So vote nader, vote green, vote whatever, just  not bush  please  :smirk:


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Everything I post is fiction.


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Offlinedmtrypr
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: Moonshoe]
    #3306296 - 11/01/04 09:07 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

I understand that you want a real choice for president. Believe me, I feel like the whole "system" is bogus. But the fact of the matter is, NADER WILL NOT WIN. And the other fact is, Bush is a real threat. Tell the 100,000 Iraqi civilians who have died so far from american bombs that you are "laughing your ass off at the whole show". Its only a show in THIS country because the corporate media has made it so. For me personally, there probably won't be any noticeable difference whether or not bush or kerry wins, but there will be quite a difference for the countries who are subject to the whims of a warmongering neo-conservative government. Life isn't about covering your own ass. Spiritually speaking we are all in this mess together.


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"There is no greater power in heaven and earth than the thought of the son of man. Though unseen by the eyes of the body,yet each thought has mighty strength, even such strength can shake the heavens." -Gospel of the Essenes


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Invisiblegettinjiggywithit
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: dmtrypr]
    #3306328 - 11/01/04 09:15 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

If you were spiritually speaking, you wouldn't fear death, that of others or your own. If you were spiritually speaking, you wouldn't be judging murder as bad or wrong either.

However, their is the self rightious side of spirituality, the dark side of spirituality the polarized ends that are still fearing and fightin with their own selves and then their is the spirit that has transcended duality and judgement and can see all of this from a perspective that says, look at the free will choices the polarized humans made today??????????? When are they going to figure it out that they are externalising their own inner power struggles between the light and dark?

Guilt doesn't work on me


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Ahuwale ka nane huna.


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Offlinedmtrypr
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: gettinjiggywithit]
    #3306504 - 11/01/04 09:56 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

I see that you understand the absolute nature of reality. That there truly is no good or evil. Truly neither death nor life. You understand that all external suffering and strife emanates from within. Yet you have no empathy or compassion. I was not trying to "guilt" you, but you are exhibiting spiritual arrogance. You believe that you have the "truth" and the rest of us are as ants scurrying around without realizing what is really going on. However, you are not the only one with clear sight. The truth is that all selves truly are one, and to ignore the struggling of another is to ignore an aspect of yourself. As you reap that which you sow, when you are in a time of need, there will be no one to answer it, as you have failed to heed the call of those who are in need of you.


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"There is no greater power in heaven and earth than the thought of the son of man. Though unseen by the eyes of the body,yet each thought has mighty strength, even such strength can shake the heavens." -Gospel of the Essenes


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Invisiblegettinjiggywithit
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: dmtrypr]
    #3306577 - 11/01/04 10:08 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

For me to answer this, I am going to have to do some teaching. If I do, you will think I am being arrogant. Hmmmmmm. You're pretty passionate right now in your beleifs.

A few clues------if anothers suffering is an aspect of your own self, then you have control over healing it right where you sit don't you?

Think about your needy talk. Who and what is it you must depend on outside of yourself if you are wholey ONE?

It sounds to me like you are spewing stuff you read, but don't have an experiential grasp on. I don't care if you call me arrogant, that doesn't work either.

Whats with the manipulation? Whats manipulating YOU that you havn't recognised yet and are externalising? LOL You are funny.


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Ahuwale ka nane huna.


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Offlinedmtrypr
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: gettinjiggywithit]
    #3306620 - 11/01/04 10:20 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

You're good, I'll give you that. You are perceptive enough to know what to say to me to incite a "defensive" response, but I am not a run of the mill human. We are truly ONE and I recognize YOU as a part of my self that I have to reconcile with. I, at one point, felt how you do, but I see things differently now. As far as my beliefs/viewpoints/ideas, they are the offspring of my experiences and nothing more. I read only to remember that which I have forgotten. What is "manipulating" me is the part of my consciousness that heeds the call of those in need. I would not spend time carrying on idle conversation if there was no reason for it. Since I find myself interested in you and your perception of reality, there is a purpose to this interaction. There is something we both need to realize. I oftentimes find that those who give me the most difficulty are those who have the most to offer.


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"There is no greater power in heaven and earth than the thought of the son of man. Though unseen by the eyes of the body,yet each thought has mighty strength, even such strength can shake the heavens." -Gospel of the Essenes


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Invisiblegettinjiggywithit
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: dmtrypr]
    #3306791 - 11/01/04 10:54 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

I'm not inciting a defensive responce. You have nothing to be defensive about because I have not attacked you, you came after me, remember and I have just been sitting here watching you fight with yourself, playing referee.

The fact you feel defensive is now showing you that you slipped into polarity vision again. Your smart enough to know what to do with that.

You answered your own question here in the last reply. How you dropped and what is manipulating you is the issue. The need of these people pulling at you, is a reflection of a need you have that you are ignoring. Look in your personal life for your own suffering you are ignoring, or may be in denial of. You know what to do with this information as well, I am sure.

Only you can pull yourself back up and out of this drama. It's important that you do the work, to gain the experiential grasp of this stuff so it becomes second and then first nature.

And thank you for giving me this lesson in patience. It is my lifes issue "patience" that is and yes, I get cocky when I am not in patience and or am just fatigued which I am, needed to refuel hours ago. My apologies for that. I need to get off this board and recharge.

You're cool dmtrypr! Where do you live in Florida? I'm in Tampa.

BTW, passion is important, it makes the things of matter matter in a way we are called to action. Passion itself pulls spirit into the game. When you can get passion coming through non polar vision, the high speed mapping kicks into play.


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Ahuwale ka nane huna.


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Offlinedmtrypr
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: gettinjiggywithit]
    #3306878 - 11/01/04 11:10 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

LOL, I was actually going to add an addendum to my post, apologizing for forgetting to practice what I preach, when I saw that you had allready replied and done so yourself. I feel the same way, I'm tired, over-worked, and all too drawn into this upcoming election. I let myself feel attacked but I realized quickly that you were not attacking me. I am extremely "empathic" and "feel" more than I think oftentimes. This creates difficulties when I identify with the feeling rather than my "true" self. Thank you for having patience. I am heartened by our mutual ability to create a positive out of what started out as negative. Transmuting darkness to light is the ultimate goal. I think that we both have something to offer each other and would like to continue this discourse further, but as it is, I am too tired to keep typing and I suspect you feel the same way.

P.S. That's cool you live in tampa, I am living in gainesville right now.


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"There is no greater power in heaven and earth than the thought of the son of man. Though unseen by the eyes of the body,yet each thought has mighty strength, even such strength can shake the heavens." -Gospel of the Essenes


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InvisibleSwami
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: gettinjiggywithit]
    #3306907 - 11/01/04 11:16 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

If you were spiritually speaking, you wouldn't fear death...

This is just another erroneous, adopted belief based on nothing. Seeing as how fear of death is instinctual, you might as well say those who are spiritual will never get hungry or horny either.


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The proof is in the pudding.


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Invisiblegettinjiggywithit
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: Swami]
    #3306932 - 11/01/04 11:23 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

You havn't been reading well hear then or missed it. Often when people peak out for a while, they loose sexual desire and appetite.

How funny, I was thinking to myself, if i tell the bored I am tired, a predator will take it that i am weak now and come in to feed. LOL

We were talking about the death of those in war. I do not fear for their souls swami, nor my own. Are you afraid of what happens to peoples souls when they die swami?


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Ahuwale ka nane huna.


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InvisibleSwami
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: gettinjiggywithit]
    #3307006 - 11/01/04 11:38 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

People lose (not loose!) sexual desire and hunger every day and regain it later; nothing mysterious in that.

A predator? LOL! I guess ALL teachers must be predators then...  :rolleyes:


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The proof is in the pudding.


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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: Swami]
    #3307027 - 11/01/04 11:45 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

Back to finding fault with typos. I didn't say there was anything mysterious about it. It also happens when people are depressed, big deal.

YOU brought up the lame comment that you interpreted my comment about not fearing death, to mean when people get spiritual, they must also loose instinctual desires, like eating and screwing.

You havn't taught anything here. Yes, eating, fearing, screwing are all physical matters. Death matters to the physical self very much and insinctually fearing it is a part of the physical experience.

What the fuck does spirit have to fear about death? It can't die, it lives eternal. Soooooooo from a spiritual perspective, "perspective from the spirit self" death is nothing to fear.

Are you really bored swami? Hue said he was bored and wants someone to spar with.


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Ahuwale ka nane huna.


Edited by gettinjiggywithit (11/01/04 11:48 PM)


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InvisibleMoonshoe
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Re: Faith Instead of Reason - An Article, Political [Re: Swami]
    #3307044 - 11/01/04 11:49 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

its also true that agression is instinctual, in our genes. does that mean we cant practice pacifism? no,

the hunger for meat is inbred into us as well, yet look at all the vegans.

The desire for sex? thats fuckin primal, but there ARE practicing celibates, lots of them.

i could go on.

Amazingly, its true, humans can control there instincts. for one thing, society as we know it couldnt exist if that wasnt true.

Fear of death is the same. W e are born with it, its Deeply stuck in there, but it can be extracted, explored, and discarded, like all our more animal urges.

not saying youd ever want to do that with some of them, but fear of death is something that we should all strive to do away with. what could be less practical then wasting your life in fear of something you simply cant avoid?

note: not fearing Death is NOT the same as not acting to preserve your life.


--------------------


Everything I post is fiction.


Edited by Moonshoe (11/01/04 11:49 PM)


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