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The Philosopher who Got It Right

In The Poseidon Adventure the Gene Hackman group sought rescue in the stern, and that’s where they were found by their rescuers. En route, they passed a group heading the opposite direction toward the bow. Each thought they were right and couldn’t be persuaded to change direction. Only one was right.

The history of thinking about who we are, where we came from, and where we’re supposed to be headed, is divided into two groups, one suspecting that reason – our minds’ logical thoughts -- should be our guide, the other certain that only our bodies’ senses – our material world -- can be trusted. The great preponderance of opinion now and throughout history has sided with the latter, and it’s dead wrong. The great names in philosophy all struggle to make sense of Reality because, over and over again, they can’t reconcile what their minds want to tell them with what their bodies and their brains are telling them. The deception of appearances blocks their understanding and they come away confused, leaving us with the brilliance of insights that fall into this school or that and solve nothing.

Who is the great philosopher who got it right? Jesus! The institution and doctrine of the Church brought his light to the darkness instead of the other way around, perverted it into its opposite so that only fragments remain to connect and resonate. A Course in Miracles begins to fix all that by dredging up the darkness that was planted in our minds when the Child lost consciousness and exposing it to the light. Practicing the Course doesn’t mean pretending we’re serene boobs who are unaffected by all the shit that’s happening. It means looking right at the shit and understanding that it’s coming from within our own minds, our own psyches, it’s totally insane, and it has a totally insane purpose which is to distract us from the Innocent Child that we all are and from our Purpose which is to wake up, to get the hell out of here, get back to Creation, and get back to work!

The great names in philosophy were great minds with promising insights here and there that nevertheless couldn’t navigate through appearances and deceptions to put them together in one great and simple answer the way Jesus did. Jesus did it by leading us toward the stern, into mind, not matter, and into the dark shit that’s been interfering with great minds’ ability to reason. We do well to go to churches that remind us that we’re all nice, comfort us, and encourage us to do nice. But we could do just as well, or better, to get together and face the fact that we’re not nice; look right at our not-niceness; be horrified and dismayed at first; come to understand its absurdity and manipulative intent; laugh it right out of the building; and thus disarm it.

If only Gene Hackman didn’t have to give up his life for his group. Oh well.

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