Monday, June 11, 2007

Resnick Revs Up

File under: Blogs of Note

As some of you know, we love to gush about our wonderful readers. Of those, we've fallen head-over-heels for some of our insightfully-commenting discussion participants. And of those, one who is at the top of the heap is Stuart Resnick. Sometimes we'd like to be a bit more like Stuart, who thinks before he types and offers measured, considered analyses of the various sociocultural phenomena of gurudom.

We are very happy to report that Stuart now has a blog in addition to his website. His first topic, the falling-from-grace-as-he-was-fattening-up-on-his-grandiose-self-image, Adi Da:
In the Da intro program I spoke of, they said something like this: If you're in Da's presence, you'll definitely get these amazing and wonderful things happen to you, and you don't need to do anything. Except, oh yeah, just one little thing, you do have to accept that he's enlightened.

And I thought, Jeez, of course! Even if you accept that a rock is enlightened, you'll get amazing experiences in the presence of that rock (as in a Hindu temple, or a vortex in Sedona). But why pretend to accept something just because you're told too? It seems like a tiny thing at first, but then it's a slippery slope to no end of non-sense, based on the one little act of pretending.
Stuart is the kinder, gentler gurubuster. We hope he keeps up with his blog and look forward to linking to his wisdom many more times for many more years.

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5 Comments:

At 6/12/2007 11:30 AM, Blogger Stuart said...

Thanks, Jody. All glories go to you as my spiritual master :)

I'm currently reading "The Guru Papers," having seen authors Joel Kramer and Diana Alstad speak in Berkeley a couple weeks ago. I'd never read it before, but it's had buzz for many years, and I assume most folks interested in the guru phenomenon are familiar with it. I don't entirely like their viewpoint; will try to blog my thoughts on it shortly.

Stuart

 
At 6/12/2007 4:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stuart, if I understand your position on "experiences", it is that we give them to ourselves. They are faith based expressions of our own minds. Humans who are more impressionable have mystical type experiences because they believe what others tell them. That they are mind generated I of course agree. If someone believes that a Shiva lingham is the actual embodiment of Shiva, they are more likely to feel something when in the presence of the stone.

I was raised as a fundementalist Christian. When I was a boy I saw a photo of Ramana Maharishi in Look or Life magazine. It had quite an impact on me. The same with the cover of Autobiography of a Yogi. In 1955 or 56, I often saw the book cover in the local drugstore. My cultural indoctrination was to think ill of these fellows. Why didn't it work?

 
At 6/12/2007 11:42 PM, Anonymous Matthew said...

" If someone believes that a Shiva lingham is the actual embodiment of Shiva, they are more likely to feel something when in the presence of the stone. "

......I buy and sell antique mostly bronze, and mostly from India, deity pieces. Pieces that have
been used in personal worship. When we are doing shows I am always amazed by the people who
come into our booth, people who wouldn't know
Ganesh from Dumbo the elephant and the end up weeping when handling the pieces. I am not
at all convinved it is all a matter of belief as to what people feel from a piece.

 
At 6/13/2007 6:36 PM, Blogger Stuart said...

> if I understand your position
> on "experiences", it is that
> we give them to ourselves.

The things that influence our life are so complex and subtle that we usually can't tell exactly why we feel this or that way in this or that situation.

However, there's been enough rigorous scientific testing and demonstration to prove beyond doubt that one's own thinking (your beliefs, intentions, and expectations) have remarkable power, more than most of us imagine.

> I was raised as a fundementalist
> Christian.

OK, but of course there were all sorts of things influencing your psyche beyond what they were telling you at church.

> When I was a boy I saw a photo
> of Ramana Maharishi in Look or
> Life magazine. [snip] My
> cultural indoctrination was to
> think ill of these fellows.

Your cultural indocrination is such a complex thing. Without crude over-simplification, how could anyone say exactly what effects the totality of your childhood experiences are?

> Why didn't it work?

Maybe Ramana looks like your Uncle Otis, who was so kind to you when you were 2 years old, but died when you were so young that you have no conscious memory of him?

Jeez, how would I know? What difference does it make anyway?

Stuart
http://home.comcast.net/~sresnick2/socalled.htm
http://stuart-randomthoughts.blogspot.com/

 
At 6/14/2007 5:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

stuart said...
Jeez, how would I know? What difference does it make anyway?

Alright, Stuart... thanks for trying to explain this to me. No need to get cranky! I guess you're right that it makes no difference. I'll just add this to my long list of things that seem important to me from time to time but aren't...

:)

 

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