She Brings Wicca to Psychotherapy With Tangible Results |329|

Discussion in 'Skeptiko Shows' started by Alex, Oct 11, 2016.

  1. Alex

    Alex New

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    She Brings Wicca to Psychotherapy With Tangible Results |329|
    by Alex Tsakiris | Oct 12 | Spirituality

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    Dr. Jane Kent practices Wicca and High Magic in concert with traditional Western psychotherapy.
    [​IMG]

    photo by: Kali Bardi
    On this episode of Skeptiko, I’m joined by Dr. Jane Kent to talk about here new book, The Goddess and the Shaman: The Art & Science of Magical Healing:

    Alex Tsakiris: Let’s talk about that a little bit because I know this is on the back of the mind of a lot of people who are listening. It’s always right behind the scenes a lot of times for me when I talk to people who are deep into magic, Wicca or any of those things… and I’m not a Christian, I’m not a Buddhist, I’m not a religious person, but if a Christian comes to me and says, “Hey, you know what? It’s all about love. It’s all about selfless service.” I get that.

    Dr. Jane Kent: Nothing wrong with that.

    Alex Tsakiris: Right. But here’s the thing, I may think that their knowledge of history is pretty lame and I’d probably push them on the historicity of Jesus. And I may think they’re kind of closed-minded about how their sacred text have been twisted by the institutions for control and manipulation, but what they’re saying speaks to my heart. Versus, if I speak to someone and they practice magic, and the first thing they tell me is about Aleister Crowley and “do what thou wilt” — I don’t get it. Love, selfless service speaks to my heart. “Do what thou wilt”, I can’t get there. It comes back and it starts sounding a lot like power, control…

    Dr. Jane Kent: Self-indulgence. I do talk about that in the book, about Crowley’s approach to things. I go into quite a lot of detail about that. But yeah, love is at the basis of spiritual reality, so I think people who focus on that, good on them. That’s fine. But Huhn says that the whole Jesus story, the whole basis of Christianity is actually taken from the Egyptian text and that in Egypt and Greece, that the mystery plays and the mystery tradition were all about understanding that coming into the physical world is coming into really like death. What we think about death as death is not how those people saw it. The physical world is death and the spiritual world is life.
     
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  2. E.Flowers

    E.Flowers New

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    @Alex

    I find the Zach/Josephine part much more interesting than this exchange on Christianity and think that it represents the subject much better than these quotes. Most of us are not Christian, so all this Christian-bashing is distracting and even superfluous (this crowd is already over it). Worse yet, it may actually alienate people that are new to the podcast.
     
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  3. Alex

    Alex New

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    Skeptiko is "show" and everyone can take from it what they like. But I disagree with your point. The most interesting part of the interview was the fact that she plays/works/dabbles in the spirit world but denies Christ consciousness... which I think is undeniably real... even if we don't know what it is.

    moreover, how can Jane draw this line? how can she say this spirit is real and that spirit is real, but this Christ spirit that millions and million have profound experiences with, well, that not real because I have this understanding of an incomplete history that tells me he didn't exist.

    this is Christianity's shadow... and why I keep gnawing at these topics.
     
  4. Far.From.Here

    Far.From.Here New

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    Thought it was a good show. Interesting material. Jane claims not to be an ideologue or dogmatic, but clings quite tightly to the notion that the "idea" of christ sprang only from Egyptian sources. Not sure how else you would define an ideologue.

    It seems as if Jane is saying that christ must necessarily have been "of the earth" in order to exist in the "non-material" realms. This seems rather silly. Other forces that most magicians quite clearly accept as real don't have any counterparts initially in living beings that I know of--the devil being the most prevalent. The nature spirit of ayahuasca is another entity that is making quite an impression quite recently. Don't think that this spirit needed to originate in human form first in order to have an effect on humanity or human consciousness.

    Something that I think we see in certain folks like Jane Kent (and we certainly see it in Andy Paquette also) is a bit of condescension. I detect a bit of "Well, I've been there and you haven't so much, so you don't really know as much about it as I do." You can feel it in folks like Jurgen Ziewe and certainly Robert Bruce, William Buhlman. Man, these folks have ALL been there, wherever "there" is. But as you say in the interview they have quite different feelings about what the nature of "there" is. I think what some of them may be loathe to admit is that they CAN all be right.
     
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  5. Alex

    Alex New

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    agreed... glaring inconsistency.
     
  6. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    Alex's question at the end of the interview:

    Do you think Christ consciousness could be a reality -- or does the questionable biblical historical record make Christ consciousness a non-starter?
     
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  7. gabriel

    gabriel New

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    At the risk of abandoning diplomacy, I didn't get any further than a new-agey, touchy-feely, earth mother, menu based spiritual soufflé. A bit of Egyptian esotericism, a little unconscious Judeo-Christianity, Nu-Wicca, health store vegan self improvement and psychoanalysis. The things she believed had no paper trial, and neither did the things she disbelieved in. There was no discipline in practice or philosophy, no spiritual or intellectual rigour. It was a works-for-me, don't sweat it approach full of prejudices and enthusiasms that didn't resonate at all. It may make perfect sense inside Dr Jane Kent's head, but sounded like a distillation of many of the books I read in my teens.
     
  8. I do suspect, at the least, that the universe may be subjectively responsive to the seeker. Whether this is mere confirmation bias (there's enough information and interpretations to support any view), a Veil to keep us from whatever the "Truth" might be, or just the nature of a reality that is a kind of Subjective Idealism I'm not sure about...

    edit: Also haven't read enough of the people who you mention to accuse them of condescension.
     
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  9. How do we know it's undeniably real? Because lots of people saw Jesus in an NDE?

    Admittedly I don't see why anything she said about the Goddess producing reality would be definitely real either.
     
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  10. E.Flowers

    E.Flowers New

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    Actually, I got the feeling that she was unfamiliar with the idea of CC at all and was mostly trying to figure it out based on what you were explaining (she did, after all, ask what it was). I don't think that she was dismissive at all of the idea that there is an underlying form of supra-consciousness, but being unfamiliar with it or simply depending on a different interpretation/rationalization (the titular goddess) than "Christ" lead to quoting something similar to the idea of a "higher self".

    I get that this bit is a continuation of the interview with Long, but frankly, my POV is that the effect of cultural conditioning and the different interpretations of this 'being of light' can be discussed without going on such tangents. By going into the historicity of Christianity and remaining there, I feel that an opportunity was missed to venture deeper into what she actually experienced besides "liberation, joy [&] freedom".
     
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  11. Michael Larkin

    Michael Larkin Member

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    Well put.

    I think you used the word "overlay" in the podcast, which very useful. Some people have a Christian overlay in one of three ways: fundamentalist, ordinarily religious, or esoteric. Others may have other Abrahamic (Islamic and Judaic) or non-Abrahamic (e.g. Buddhistic or Hinduistic) overlays in any of these three ways.

    Alternatively, there are Wiccan, Shamanistic, theosophical, alien-being-oriented, or --- yes, I would include this -- atheistic overlays. Even this last can come in each of the three flavours: fundamentalist (you'd better believe in AGW, Darwinism, etc., or, though we won't send you to hell, we'll certainly vilify and ostracise you); the stance of the average bloke who doesn't really understand science and is generally sceptical about psi matters; and lastly, the stance of the semi-mystical guru who speculates about multiple universes, black holes, etc., and truly appreciates the "wonder" of a nonetheless meaningless universe.

    We're all living within the psychological ambit of a particular overlay. I admit that I am no exception: I'd classify it as, broadly speaking, an esoteric, Christian-tinged one. I've mentioned Gerard Manley Hopkins' poem, As Kingfishers Catch Fire, several times in the past as it so neatly encapsulates a description of part of my particular psychosis (not being privy to the actual truth about reality, it could be posited that we're all psychotics in one way or another):



    It's particularly the second stanza that grabs me:

    I say more: the just man justices;
    Keeps grace: that keeps all his goings graces;
    Acts in God's eye what in God's eye he is —
    Christ. For Christ plays in ten thousand places,
    Lovely in limbs, and lovely in eyes not his
    To the Father through the features of men's faces.

    Remember: this is a poem written by a Jesuit priest, no less. And yet, it is so quintessentially Idealist in nature. Christ isn't a single man: he is all men and women. He is everywhere, "plays in ten thousand places", like a simultaneous solo orchestra.

    I find this so indescribably seductive a view, just as Jane Kent finds her own psychosis, that of the Goddess, so seductive. I wonder: I can morph her view into mine -- can she morph mine into hers? (I think some visitors here are good morphers who think in that third way I mentioned: esoteric, and somewhat flexible. Whilst accepting that they lean in a particular direction, they are at least partially capable of envisioning or encompassing someone else's worldview).

    I wonder. She seems overly concerned about the historicity of Jesus. To my mind, it doesn't actually matter whether or not he existed: he's a symbol of something real. Sure, she can say that Christ consciousness maps to something else in her world view, but she does that in a way that makes me suspect she's dismissing its validity.

    It doesn't matter that in some respects she can claim her understanding works in terms of healing people: the fact that it works doesn't make it literally so. After all, a lot of science is based on the claim that the mathematics works: e=mc^2 for example -- but what actually are e and m, energy and mass? In the final analysis, no one has the faintest idea. They represent something real, for sure, but what is real isn't necessarily the same as something conceived of as literal physical existents. Rather, this is a way of describing an apparently physical world that's valid for the physical monist, or the dualist.

    The world seems so irresistibly real and concrete. That's how we perceive it, and all of science is slave to what are deemed as our ordinary human senses; if it can't be so sensed, then it can't exist. But if there are other senses that science hasn't so far recognised, then what they perceive may be just as real -- or unreal, for that matter.
     
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  12. Do you think Christ consciousness could be a reality -- or does the questionable biblical historical record make Christ consciousness a non-starter?

    Yes it could be a reality. I think the God of some organized religions is the creation of the mind of humans, but that doesn't mean there isn't something like "God" that is real. The same could true for Christ. Suppose Jesus was an invention, that doesn't mean there isn't something like Christ Consciousness. If some aspect of God or Christ Consciousness wanted to communicate with a human who's experience is limited to the physical world, that entity might chose to communicate in the form that would be best understood by the human.


    The core of Christianity is love. Many NDErs and evidential mediums also say the most important thing is love.

    If you want to make a difference in the world, try to spread love and a message of love.

    Most of the messages that people who have NDEs come back with are positive and inspirational. They might contradict existing religions but they don't dwell on a negative message, they bring a positive message of love and say what they know is right and true, not what others are doing wrong. It seems like a good example for everyone to follow.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Commandment

    In Mark, when asked "which is the great commandment in the law?", the Greek New Testament reports that Jesus answered, "Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God, The Lord is One; Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind",[2] before also referring to a second commandment, "Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself."[3] Most Christian denominations consider these two commandments the core of the Christian religion.[4]

    http://biblehub.com/kjv/mark/12.htm#28

    28And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all? 29And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: 30And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. 31And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

    What NDErs say about God:
    http://ncu9nc.blogspot.com/2012/09/evidence-that-god-exists-people-who.html
    George Rodonaia
    Anyone who has had such an experience of God, who has felt such a profound sense of connection with reality, knows that there is only one truly significant work to do in life, and that is love; to love nature, to love people, to love animals, to love creation itself, just because it is. To serve God's creation with a warm and loving hand of generosity and compassion - that is the only meaningful existence.
    Linda Stewart
    I was home and I wanted nothing more than to remain in the light of God. Christ had delivered me into the light and I stood in the presence of God. I was filled with complete knowing: The light was love and love was God. Waves of consummate love which emanated from the light obliterated every burden I carried and every thought that kept me from knowing God.
    Arthur Yensen
    ... salvation is simple. All one has to do is to love so unselfishly that his soul-vibrations will rise high enough to fit him into heaven.
    Jan Price
    I am in love, consciously at peace with all there is. In God, I love and move and have my being. In love, I live and move and have my being. In peace, I live and move and have my being. There is nothing else. There is no outer. All is in the circle of God, Love, God Love. GOD LOVE.
    Laura's NDE
    God in the manifestation of infinite light appeared off to my left, and I was engulfed in a form of all-powerful, all-nourishing love.
     
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  13. Mediochre

    Mediochre Member

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    This interview enraged me in many different ways. Some because my own research and experience directly contradict some of her claims. I believe I can be accurately classed as one of those people who has spent thousands of hours training and honing my abilities with meditation and what I'll call "physical magic" and have learned a few things as a result. But mostly because "doctor" Kent is painfully hypocritical and irrational in some of her arguments.



    For starters and probably most fundamentlally this is someone who claims/believes,



    1: extended consciousness requires/is enhanced by a certain level of philosophical understanding

    2: that she is not an ideologue

    and then hilariously,

    3: That it is naive and ludicrous to believe that evil doesn't exist.



    I wonder what your definition of "evil" is? Moreover I wonder if you've ever even thought about how one might define good and evil?



    Jane, you're an ideologue, just by having a belief in such a ridiculous and easily disprovable false dichotmy as "Good" and "Evil" you have proven you're an ideologue. But of course you went further with the also undefined concepts of "Masculine" and "Feminine." I'd expect someone who is claiming the title of "Doctor" to understand the importance of operational definitions in scientific study particularly during an interview on the subject you claim to have knowledge of. Althouugh it is true that Alex should have pressed you much harder to define your terms, it does not excuse the many blatant hypocrisies in your stated beliefs.



    If this stuff is actually partly about philisophical understanding then perhaps you should go read some of Jean Paul Sartre, Friedrich Nietzsche, Immanuel Kant, and the "problem of evil" philisophical paradox. Or just spend 5 minutes browsing through reddit.com/r/philosophy.



    Chances are your definition of evil would boil down to the same thing as everyone else who believes that such a thing exists, that is, "things you don't like." And thus your definition of good would be "things that I like." Meaning that therefore if someone is doing something and you think that they are evil for doing it, you're literally saying "stop liking what I don't like." This would be fine if you didn't then take your definitions and try to claim that they applied to anyone or anything other than yourself. But based on your tone and the other things you said in the interview I suspect that you do. Perhaps I am right on what I've said here, and perhaps I'm not. I don't have the data to decide yet. Perhaps you do have a decent and properly subjective definition of evil, masculinity, "high" magic and the like. But until I know for sure, I might as well gamble and go with what things appear to be and see what happens.



    Both yourself and Alex seemed somewhat disparaging towards Alestair Crowleys method of magic. A name I have addmitttedly never even heard of until this interview so I can't really speak on it too much. But the fact that you both seemed disparaging towards the ideas of "power, control and self indulgence" when compared to "love and selfless service towards others" is very telling. First and foremost selflessness doesn't exist, ask /r/philosophy if you disagree. Secondly it shows an interesting perception that power, control and self indugence are opposed to love and selfless service to others. A dichotomy that likely exists as an extension of your aforementioned belief in good and evil. If both of you do believe that pursuing power and control are bad, it is likely out of jealousy. The same way someone might say "well that person has too much money." but it's only too much when it's not yours. I may not like Nietzsche as a person, but I believe he was probably right in the assertion that morality was probably something invented by the "weak" as a means to judge and restrict the "strong." After all both of you have more power and control than some people in the world. You are also both capable of indulging in things that they can't. So, are you bad for having that capability? Are you "evil" for having a car or having that second scoop of icecream? If the answer is no, then why would purusing power, control and self indulgence be something to look down upon?



    Furthermore, why could someone not, for example, pursue power, control and self indulgence for the purpose of love and selfless service towards others? I realize that I would need to start defining terms for me to ask all this properly, but let's leave it open for thinking for the moment and see what happens.



    But out of everything Jane said the one thing that almost makes me think she should probably be stripped of any medical licence or doctoral status she has was "well science works really good for the material world but I don't think it can work for extended consciousness." Really? then what are you gonna use? Faith? You gonna use "Heart logic" as people on some cultist website use where if it feels good it must be true? Alex caught you on this of course because it's ridiculous, you can't go up there, claim there's things you probably shouldn't do, and then claim "oh but it's probably everyone's indvidual experience" while also trying to say this stuff is real in an objective sense. Then try to handwave legitimate critisism by saying "Oh well not everyone sees the physical world the same way either so what's the problem?" Yes because we all know how gravity affects people only when they feel like it Dr. Kent, that's how the real world works. We all know how electrical resistance is based on how peoples day has been going at the time Jane. That's totally what people have observed in reality for ages and why we were able to develop things like the internet. It's all just personal perception.



    But I'll do you one better. I, the accredditationless scrub from the internet, will talk about my own research and experience into one tiny aspect of the paranormal that I've studied. And I will briefly show how I used the scientific method to make some determinations. Something that, if I understand your statements right, you believe can't be done. Ask any questions you'd like after I'm done.



    In my research and experience I've encountered a thing I call The Kruger Effect which is defined as the ability for things encountered in projection to have direct, physical effects on the body under certain conditions. Not, cancer or getting a sore throat or mood swings which could likely be caused by many different unseen factors but direct physical things like scratches, burns and the like. I do not typically include bruises in this deinition because they also have other known, more likely, psychosomatic causes despite being encountered commonly as well. The Kruger Effect is divided into two known categories,



    Type A: Direct physical effects that occur instantaneously to the physical body after/while being done to the spirit body. Albeit usually at a reduced yet variable severity which is something I've yet to find an explanation for. Example, you get slashed on the arm up there and a small, long, shallow cut appears on your arm in the exact same place at the exact same time down here.



    Type B: Arguably more severe, does not leave a physical mark of any kind but seems to drain the energy of the area as if a physical wound were present at the same level of severity as it exists on the spirit body. Has been known to cause paralysation, numbness, loss of circulation and pain.



    Wounds caused to the physical body from things attacking the spirit body need to heal just like normal wounds. Type B's are nicer this way because, since they have no physical wound, they seem to merely need to recharge the lost energy and fill in the mould that is the physical body. This allows full and relatively speedy recovery from what would otherwise be permanent or fatal injuries. I should know.



    If we follow the Philip K. Dick line of reasoning. That reality is that which, when we stop believing in it, doesn't go away. It would be logical to surmise that since the Kruger effect injury lingers regardless of belief or awareness it must therefore be "real." If the injury is real then the thing that appeared to have caused the injury is probably also "real." I.e NOT just my personal experience. Not just my perception, but something that exists outside of my control affecting me based on what would probably have to be some form of arbitrary rules, such as the laws of physics. If this were not true, and it really was my personal expereince, I should be able to just imagine the wounds away. Or even, imagine away the thing that seemed to cause the wounds in the first place before the injury happens. But that doesn't work, so it's probably not me.



    This explanation is highly oversimplified to keep it short so if you find errors in the reasoning that is probably why. Ask whatever you want.



    Look at that, I used the scientific method to, probably, accurately investigate something you sound like you believe could not be investigated with such a method. Gee it's almost like if you just ask reality what it is instead of telling it what it is you fucking learn shit about it. Man it's like fucking magic ain't it? By the way, wanna take a wild guess why I named this phenomenon the "Kruger Effect"?



    I have so, SO much more I'd love to say about this interview and the concept of magic in general and I'm sure I made some kind of logical error in here somewhere but this comment is already entirely too long so whatever I'll fix it later.
     
  14. Alex

    Alex New

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    not sure I understand yr position... I mean, millions and millions have encountered Christ consciousness thru the centuries. This is explained away with a wave of the materialist hand... harder for the rest of us.
     
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  15. Alex

    Alex New

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    Dr. Jane Kent: Well, I’d say people who see “Jesus” standing at the end of the tunnel in the light are actually experiencing an encounter with their own soul, not Jesus because Jesus, in my view, doesn’t actually exist. But the soul certainly exists and a lot of the attributions of the soul are exactly what people would attribute to Christ consciousness
     
  16. Alex

    Alex New

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    nice. thx.


    right... or stranger still, is "real" because so many believe he's real. I'm not totally on board with retro-causal stuff, but not willing to totally dismiss it either.

    similarly, consider Satan, who seem like total invention of the early Hebrews when they wanted to move from a dualistic Yahweh to a Yahweh versus Satan motif. that said, I sure seems like all that negative energy put into Satan has created a reality there.
     
  17. malf

    malf Member

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    In transit at Auckland airport, just listened on the plane. Wanted to let you know I thought you were excellent in this interview, fwiw.
     
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  18. Alex

    Alex New

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    thx Malf. I take back everything I've said about skeptics never changing their mind :)
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2016
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  19. David Bailey

    David Bailey Administrator

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    I don't think it is necessary to be rude to Alex's guest in order to disagree with her!
    By the sounds of it, your take on reality isn't exactly standard materialism, and I think that people here take a whole variety of positions on these matters, and we generally try to get on civilly.

    Perhaps it would be better to introduce yourself in the introductions thread, and give us some idea of your views on these matters.

    David
     
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  20. E.Flowers

    E.Flowers New

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    Before this comment, there was this:

    ↑ This exchange convinced me that she was just following you around, exploiting an opportunity to express her stance on Christianity without having a concrete idea of what the concept of CC really is.
     
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