Re: MD Is the MoQ still in the Kantosphere?

From: Phaedrus Wolff (
Date: Wed Dec 22 2004 - 00:04:54 GMT

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    Sam) - It's the emphasis on 'mystical experience' as such which I think is

    Hi Sam,

    This is pretty much our difference. In considering what is/is not mysticism;
    you want to add guidelines. There are none, and the path you take to a
    mystical experience has nothing to do with the experience, and the path does
    not matter, nor is the path necessary.

    This is why I do not need to compare the definitions/philosophies of
    mysticism, as I see no philosophy in mysticism, nor definitions needed in
    mysticism. A mystic experience will define your philosophy, as opposed to
    the other way around.

    If you have to ask what a mystic experience is, or you need someone to tell
    you, then you have not had a mystic experience.

    It is my personal feeling that anyone who has not had, or recognized having
    a mystical experience, it is due to the fact that they cannot let go of
    their prejudices or prejudgments.

    Ebeneser Scrooge had a mystical experience. In this analogy, the problem is
    that people may think in order to have had a mystical experience, an angel
    had to come down from heaven and slap them over the head, like in the

    This only tends to confuse. Maybe this is because a mystical experience can
    come through the heart as opposed to the brain. From my own mystical
    experiences, I could not see immediately how they had changed the person I
    call me, but looking back, I can see how they have.

    In my youth, I was filled with the mystic; I didn't have the words to
    describe it. In my later years I learned the words; the ones that destroy
    the thing I once knew. If I must choose between the mystic and the words, I
    choose the mystic, as there are no words to do it justice.

    I searched through the church, and through the 'Bricks and mortar'
    universities, and found nothing but words of no value. As I then placed
    value first, I found the answers to what I was looking for, but it seems I
    no longer have the words to describe this value I found that is imbedded in
    every aspect of my life.

    All I know is that you don't have to stand on one foot, rub your belly with
    one hand, and/or pat your head with the other to find the secrets to the
    universe; the secrets are right here in front of us, but we can't see. All
    that is needed is to move the obsticles that blur your sight.

    It seems to me Pirsig has made some advances in this area, but it also
    appears to me that he doesn't have the words either.

    What I see as the MOQ is so simple, I don't see how anyone can miss it, but
    it is obvious that someone, possibly me, has.

    Disagree or agree; it doesn't really matter. I hold no truths, but I hold no


    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "Sam Norton" <>
    To: <>
    Sent: Monday, December 20, 2004 10:57 PM
    Subject: Re: MD Is the MoQ still in the Kantosphere?

    > Hi Chin,
    > > I stopped my reading long enough to answer to this. It was my
    > > that you stated something to the nature that you can't have a mystical
    > > experience outside the tradition, and that in order to have a mystical
    > > experience, you first had to master the tradition. This is where I
    > > you were getting mysticism confused with SQ/DQ. If I am wrong in my
    > > translation of what you actually said, I'd be tickled to hear what you
    > > as this is where I felt we were so far apart.
    > It's the emphasis on 'mystical experience' as such which I think is
    misleading. I think there are
    > spiritual paths; I think the point of the spiritual path is to walk along
    it; I think the emphasis
    > on 'experience' is derived from empiricism, and if you don't at some level
    buy into empiricism
    > (which I don't, but which the MoQ does, despite it being part of SOM) then
    it's not "experience"
    > which validates the mysticism. More broadly, I don't know what it would
    mean to have a mystical
    > experience that was completely separate from a wider understanding. If you
    have an experience which
    > cannot be described then you cannot describe it, which means that you
    cannot make it a part of who
    > you are, it's not part of your self-description. As soon as you are able
    to talk about it, then
    > you're using the language that has shaped you to incorporate the
    experience into your on-going
    > narrative. This is why Christian nuns don't dream about the Buddha, not
    because the Buddha and
    > Christ represent two different styles of mysticism. If you study the
    reports of religious experience
    > (go to for a sample) you'll see that
    people always describe
    > them using their own language (not a surprise, surely?), and that the
    experiences reported are
    > diverse. There isn't a 'common core' to which they all correspond, lying
    beneath the different
    > descriptions. 'Sometimes the whole weight is in the picture', as
    Wittgenstein once said, ie not in
    > an intellectual abstraction from the picture.
    > What I was most disagreeing with DMB about was his comment "As the JNANI
    website explains, Western
    > religions tend to be of the devotional sort and tend to deny that there is
    any other kind. It seems
    > pretty clear to me that this has been your position, Sam." I'm not denying
    jnani at all, so far as I
    > understand it, nor do I think I, or pretty much anyone who contributes to
    a forum like this, could
    > be accurately described as having a bhakti orientation. (BTW I think his
    website is full of #!$ when
    > it's describing Christianity, but I can't see the point in running through
    all the places why. I
    > will if someone's interested).
    > > Sam says) - This was a surprise to me, but it ties in with the
    > > various discussions we've had here and in the MF section, especially
    > > whether Quality is
    > > separate from DQ/SQ (my perspective) or whether DQ and SQ are in a
    > > source/expression relationship
    > > (your point of view, as I recall).
    > >
    > > This is also confusing to me, as I felt Quality was actually divided
    > > SQ/DQ, the SQ was the definable Quality, while DQ was not definable, and
    > > that you only knew it was DQ once it became a creation that then became
    > > It is a matter of SQ discreation and DQ creation, but neither are
    > > on the other.
    > >
    > > If everything is Quality, how could Quality be outside anything?
    > This is from a post I sent to MF in April: As I understand the MoQ there
    are three elements:
    > Quality, Dynamic Quality and Static Quality.
    > Quality is reality.
    > Dynamic Quality is the pre-intellectual cutting edge of reality
    > Static Quality is the pattern of value that dynamic quality leaves in its
    > So in terms of how we can understand and explain our experience
    (experience being the basic 'stuff'
    > of reality - and the MoQ being a variant of empiricism) what we have are:
    our static patterns (eg
    > our accumulated language); our 'dim apprehensions of things too obscure
    for its existing language'
    > which is DQ; and we also have all those things which we don't have any
    comprehension or intimation
    > of whatsoever - the totally unknown and unknowable.
    > The reason why DQ and Quality need to be distinguished is because if they
    are identified then the
    > MoQ collapses into solipsism, in other words, MY appreciation of DQ is not
    contextualised by my
    > static patterns that have led me to this point; no, my appreciation of DQ
    is a direct appreciation
    > of all that there is.
    > Quality is bigger than DQ. But DQ is the interface between any particular
    set of static patterns and
    > Quality itself. It's like saying a person is the skin - because the skin
    is what you touch, what you
    > relate to. But there's more to a person than the skin - to argue otherwise
    is superficial.
    > I think the heart of what I am trying to argue is that DQ is a relative
    term not an absolute term.
    > Whether a particular pattern is DQ or not depends upon its relationship
    with the SQ surrounding it.
    > When Socrates was teaching his students he was teaching them to realise
    something that he already
    > knew - that didn't make it any less dynamic *for them*, ie for the static
    patterns that were
    > interacting with Socrates' static patterns.
    > So when you (DMB) say: "The true nature of reality is undivided. That's
    the pre-intellectual cutting
    > edge of experience" I think you are eliding the distinction between
    Quality (the true nature of
    > reality as undivided) and Dynamic Quality (the pre-intellectual cutting
    edge **which we
    > experience**) because the latter is relative to the static patterns it is
    based in.
    > I still consider Quality to be the mystical reality, and the reason why
    the MoQ works is because it
    > is an 'open' system, that is, it allows for an appreciation of the
    unexpected, and therefore room to
    > change. But DQ changes, when they have Quality and are not degenerate,
    result in SQ fallout, and the
    > process carries on and repeats and repeats, journeying ever deeper into
    Quality itself. DQ is the
    > lure that draws us on, it is not the destination. And that DQ can operate
    through existing SQ
    > patterns, dependent on the interaction with other SQ patterns. When the
    baby discovers how to walk,
    > this is surely a DQ moment - even though it has been done millions of
    times before.
    > Sam
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