Opher on spirituality.

Opher on spirituality.

Unknown Border saved from a Rotary Club car park plant saleP1100493P1090972P1010029

I am an antitheist – I am opposed to all religions. I think they are created by man and do more harm than good. I would like to see all religion wither on the vine.

But spirituality? No. I like spirituality.

I think religions probably started out as means of celebrating spirituality before they turned into power trips for megalomaniacs and indoctrination courses for children.

I do not think science understands everything or will ever understand everything. The universe becomes weirder and weirder with every discovery. What I am sure of is that a lot of the things that seem so inexplicable to us now may well be found to have a scientific basis. We do seem to connect mentally. There does seem to be synchronicity. There are incredible coincidences. People read religious/spiritual things into these. Maybe there is a spiritual element or maybe it has a scientific principle that we have no yet discovered? Who knows?

For me the holy books are interesting relics of an Iron-age mind. They do contain some worthy things plus a lot of culturally suspect garbage. Like any book of fiction or non-fiction there are good things to take out of them and a lot of stuff that has been superseded by our knowledge, thinking and understanding. Those books are products of their age and culture. They contain all the prejudices and attitudes of that culture and time. I’d like to think we’re a lot better than that now.

So what is my understanding of this spirituality that lies beyond religion?

Well for me it is not god, gods or spirits. It is not afterlife or resurrections, hell, paradise or dogma – it is the essence of life, the universe and everything (to paraphrase Douglas Adams).

For me there is a universal energy that pervades everything; every atom, subatomic particle, sun, galaxy and living creature. That energy is a vibration that runs everything. I do not endow it with consciousness or purpose.

For me that throb of the universe runs in me and connects me to everything. I marvel at it in sunsets, trees, rocks, sea, living creatures, plants, sun, moon, waterfalls, mountains, galaxies and the sky at night – all the things that our ancestors worshipped.

I do not worship it. I do not imbue it with meaning.

I marvel at it, enjoy it, relish it, renew myself in the wonder and awe of it and adore it.

If there is something that I would give the name god to it would be the atomic energy that connects all the universe into one right out to the expanding front of the event horizon created by the big bang.

I have no need for the gubbins of religion, for a personal god or eternal life. I have my rainbows, sunsets and snow-capped mountains. There is nothing to believe in, be dogmatic about, to divide people or provide hatred.

When I die my consciousness will cease. The energy that I am part of will not. I don’t care if that energy is conscious or has a purpose. That is meaningless and pointless to speculate. I just know that it will not be any god like the religions describe. It has not interest in my life or consciousness. It is a perpetual flow and I am part of it.

My spirituality is summed up by two people (or a group) sitting on the rim of grand canyon watching the sun go down, sharing a glass of wine, waiting for the stars to come out, gazing up in awe and then getting the guitars out and celebrating that with laughter.

My spirituality is inclusive and requires no expectations or beliefs. I am alive. That is miraculous. I don’t have to have been created. To exist is enough.

Spirituality versus Religion

Spirituality versus Religion

Primula auricula Grey Hawk Unknown Border saved from a Rotary Club car park plant salePhotographs – Richard Duffy-Howard – award winning photographer – https://loudhailer.net/

I am an extremely spiritual person but I am totally opposed to all organised religion.

My spirituality is also based on a numbers of things:

  • Wonder and awe at the incredible splendour of the universe – the macrocosm and microcosm – black holes, galaxies and quarks.
  • Wonder and awe at the beauty of nature – life in all its forms
  • Creativity in all its forms – art, poetry, dance, writing, architecture, photography, film,
  • The splendours of natural phenomena, landscapes, seascapes, trees, rocks, gorges, mountains, lakes ……
  • The wonders of consciousness
  • Love

I do not really care if there is a god or not. It is of little importance to me. I want a secular spirituality. I reject all religion for a number of reasons

  • I believe all the religious books were written by men. None are the word of god. (This is evident to me when I see the way they were written, who they were written by and what previous texts they were based on).
  • I believed organised religion is used for power and to promote division and hatred for personal gain (status, power and wealth).
  • Religion is used to prevent any opposition to a state’s power.
  • The fear principle of heaven and hell is psychologically damaging. No sane god would create such a thing.
  • Too much religion is sectarian and thus creates division and fosters hatred.
  • I think the indoctrination of children is obscene child abuse
  • To live for a possible after-life (which I do not believe exists) can prevent a person from experiencing the short life we have
  • Following all the multitude of different rituals, dress codes, eating restrictions, prayers, (each religion has its own set of instructions from ‘god’ – all different) etc. is risible.
  • Much of religion misses the point of spirituality

However I know some people gain personal fulfilment by following a religion, find companionship and psychological reassurance. Religious people can be spiritual, kind, generous and tolerant.

 

My spirituality creates a wealth of warmth and connection. It is a positive affirmation of life. There is no division, hatred or need to justify it. My spirituality exists and requires no god, purpose or imposed morality. The morality I live by comes out of it. I respect and hold as precious all living things, fellow humans and the world around me. I’ve no need to put that into commandments.

I have no need for religion. I have no time for superstition. My universe is a world of wonder to be investigated, marvelled at and enjoyed. There are many things to be understood. I have a life to revel in it.

Poetry – We All Shine On

We All Shine On

 

We all shine on.

Our words are whispers in the wind that murmur in the ears forever.

Our atoms throb within the brains of all who live,

And always will.

Our dreams fill the zeitgeist in which we float.

Our impact is eternal.

We enrich the zeitgeist of the world with every wish.

Our thoughts and dreams mingle in the void of forever.

Our ripples rise into a tsunami.

We are incorporated into the vibration that connects us to the stars.

For we have lived, desired and sought joy and enlightenment;

We have created with passion,

Loved with abandon

And painted pictures in the warm breezes.

That is surely enough?

 

Opher – 6.11.2019

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When we are gone our bodies, artefacts, possessions and creations will all be gone. Our thoughts, dreams and memories will dissolve. Yet our contributions will remain. Nothing ever dies. Every word that sends a ripple of atoms to jiggle an eardrum slowly radiates out in ever expanding circles. In quiet moments we can hear the wisdom of our forebears whispering in our ears.

Our ideals also shine on invisibly to bathe others in their radiance and inspire hope.

Nobody ever dies while our echoes persist. We are absorbed into the vibration in which we all exist.

We all shine on – as John Lennon pointed out.

My first book – Reality Dreams – written in 1970-75.

I’m writing up my first book – more for my own satisfaction than anything else. I’m quite nostalgic about it as it took me many years to write. I started it in 1970. It is a collage incorporating cartoons, poems, sketches and a surreal story. I thought I was being really revolutionary. It is a thing of the sixties. I do not think it has any commercial promise but I felt I would like to put it in print so I can have a real book copy.

Here’s the start. What do you think?

Part 1

 p1140347

The Flux

The universe does not exist in space and time. It has no size, shape or form. Time is merely a measure of change; it radiates out from a point at various speeds, dependent on the energy it chooses to hitch a ride on. Usually it is fast.

Any individual appears to live in a moment in time and space and may continue to live their life unaffected by the reality of this phenomenon. Yet, perhaps, one day they may realise that the finite life they live is an illusion. The moment this realisation occurs and is believed their life will cease to exist. For who can connect cause and effect in an infinite system where time and space are interchangeable? The reality is that our lives are held by a tenuous thread. We have no static shape and the sequence of days that make up the course of a life may be nothing more than a chance progression, an anarchy of ideas in a vacuum.

For finity and infinity cannot exist inside each other. The illusion of one or the other is nothing more than the product of a healthy art of deception. The flow is a poet. Life is the metered scrawl on a clean sheet that is the void.

Each individual must make the decision to choose whether it is finity or infinity that is reality. Whatever they select they should be warned that it is likely to be incorrect. The pattern of life and memory may alter unexpectedly.

Geologically the life of the Earth is recent; the passage of a lifetime a fleeting flicker. For the void the whole universe with its stability of matter and orderly course of time is but a brief interlude. Anarchy is the path that nature treads in order to create the flux.

Nothing that exists in the flux is ever organised in finite terms. The laws that seem to govern space and time are ephemeral.

As I write and you read we may even be the same being.

 

 

Poetry – Bums in the Air – A poem about religion

Bums in the Air

People are great joiner-inners. They go with the majority. I find it quite startling to see how conservative and fundamental things have become. Back when I was a lad my Muslim friends were all westernised. They didn’t take their religion to extremes. The girls did not go around in head-scarves let alone burqas. In Islamabad University in Pakistan the students wore jeans, T-shirts and listened to the Beatles, Stones and Pink Floyd.

How things have changed.

The children are taken off to their Madrassas where they are subjected to religious indoctrination.

I see families walking down the street, in the summer heat, with the poor woman completely enclosed in heavy black robes, breathing stale air behind a mask, while her husband is cool in T-shirt and jeans.

I am a believer in freedom but I hate misogyny, indoctrination and superstition.

In my view spirituality is about harmony with nature and the universe. Religion is about power, indoctrination and division.

 

Bums in the Air

 

Bums in the air

Indoctrination everywhere.

Allah and sweet Jesus,

Jehovah

And God above.

How absurd they look

With their array of holy book.

Spouting words

From Neolithic lords

Dressed in fancy costume –

Medieval bride

And modern groom.

 

Opher – 14.9.2016

Opher on spirituality.

Unknown Border saved from a Rotary Club car park plant saleP1100493P1090972P1010029

I am an antitheist – I am opposed to all religions. I think they are created by man and do more harm than good. I would like to see all religion wither on the vine.

But spirituality? No. I like spirituality.

I think religions probably started out as means of celebrating spirituality before they turned into power trips for megalomaniacs and indoctrination courses for children.

I do not think science understands everything or will ever understand everything. The universe becomes weirder and weirder with every discovery. What I am sure of is that a lot of the things that seem so inexplicable to us now may well be found to have a scientific basis. We do seem to connect mentally. There does seem to be synchronicity. There are incredible coincidences. People read religious/spiritual things into these. Maybe there is a spiritual element or maybe it has a scientific principle that we have no yet discovered? Who knows?

For me the holy books are interesting relics of an Iron-age mind. They do contain some worthy things plus a lot of culturally suspect garbage. Like any book of fiction or non-fiction there are good things to take out of them and a lot of stuff that has been superseded by our knowledge, thinking and understanding. Those books are products of their age and culture. They contain all the prejudices and attitudes of that culture and time. I’d like to think we’re a lot better than that now.

So what is my understanding of this spirituality that lies beyond religion?

Well for me it is not god, gods or spirits. It is not afterlife or resurrections, hell, paradise or dogma – it is the essence of life, the universe and everything (to paraphrase Douglas Adams).

For me there is a universal energy that pervades everything; every atom, subatomic particle, sun, galaxy and living creature. That energy is a vibration that runs everything. I do not endow it with consciousness or purpose.

For me that throb of the universe runs in me and connects me to everything. I marvel at it in sunsets, trees, rocks, sea, living creatures, plants, sun, moon, waterfalls, mountains, galaxies and the sky at night – all the things that our ancestors worshipped.

I do not worship it. I do not imbue it with meaning.

I marvel at it, enjoy it, relish it, renew myself in the wonder and awe of it and adore it.

If there is something that I would give the name god to it would be the atomic energy that connects all the universe into one right out to the expanding front of the event horizon created by the big bang.

I have no need for the gubbins of religion, for a personal god or eternal life. I have my rainbows, sunsets and snow-capped mountains. There is nothing to believe in, be dogmatic about, to divide people or provide hatred.

When I die my consciousness will cease. The energy that I am part of will not. I don’t care if that energy is conscious or has a purpose. That is meaningless and pointless to speculate. I just know that it will not be any god like the religions describe. It has not interest in my life or consciousness. It is a perpetual flow and I am part of it.

My spirituality is summed up by two people (or a group) sitting on the rim of grand canyon watching the sun go down, sharing a glass of wine, waiting for the stars to come out, gazing up in awe and then getting the guitars out and celebrating that with laughter.

My spirituality is inclusive and requires no expectations or beliefs. I am alive. That is miraculous. I don’t have to have been created. To exist is enough.

Spirituality versus Religion

Primula auricula Grey Hawk Unknown Border saved from a Rotary Club car park plant salePhotographs – Richard Duffy-Howard – award winning photographer – https://loudhailer.net/

I am an extremely spiritual person but I am totally opposed to all organised religion.

My spirituality is also based on a numbers of things:

  • Wonder and awe at the incredible splendour of the universe – the macrocosm and microcosm – black holes, galaxies and quarks.
  • Wonder and awe at the beauty of nature – life in all its forms
  • Creativity in all its forms – art, poetry, dance, writing, architecture, photography, film,
  • The splendours of natural phenomena, landscapes, seascapes, trees, rocks, gorges, mountains, lakes ……
  • The wonders of consciousness
  • Love

I do not really care if there is a god or not. It is of little importance to me. I want a secular spirituality. I reject all religion for a number of reasons

  • I believe all the religious books were written by men. None are the word of god. (This is evident to me when I see the way they were written, who they were written by and what previous texts they were based on).
  • I believed organised religion is used for power and to promote division and hatred for personal gain (status, power and wealth).
  • Religion is used to prevent any opposition to a state’s power.
  • The fear principle of heaven and hell is psychologically damaging. No sane god would create such a thing.
  • Too much religion is sectarian and thus creates division and fosters hatred.
  • I think the indoctrination of children is obscene child abuse
  • To live for a possible after-life (which I do not believe exists) can prevent a person from experiencing the short life we have
  • Following all the multitude of different rituals, dress codes, eating restrictions, prayers, (each religion has its own set of instructions from ‘god’ – all different) etc. is risible.
  • Much of religion misses the point of spirituality

However I know some people gain personal fulfilment by following a religion, find companionship and psychological reassurance. Religious people can be spiritual, kind, generous and tolerant.

 

My spirituality creates a wealth of warmth and connection. It is a positive affirmation of life. There is no division, hatred or need to justify it. My spirituality exists and requires no god, purpose or imposed morality. The morality I live by comes out of it. I respect and hold as precious all living things, fellow humans and the world around me. I’ve no need to put that into commandments.

I have no need for religion. I have no time for superstition. My universe is a world of wonder to be investigated, marvelled at and enjoyed. There are many things to be understood. I have a life to revel in it.