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#41
Don't Hindus require a 'pefect living master' that by chance they're supposed to encounter on their life journey?
As a student, I can't imagine living under a guru. I have never met anyone who really had their act together who I would give that much power over me. However, there are plenty of people who know more than me that I have learned from despite their own human failings. Just because someone is a screw up doesn't mean he doesn't know something he can teach you. Sometimes people have unrealistic expectations of spiritual teachers. Teachers are human. If a student expects them to be more than human, the mistake is the student's as much as the teacher's. I was never fooled by claims of infallibility, in fact such claims set off my crap detector, so I am not entirely sympathetic to those who are fooled. I've attended meditation retreats because they provide a disciplined environment where you can meditate a lot, but I never fell under the spell of the teachers.

From the point of view of the teacher however, I can understand why someone would want control over a student. In my own life I find there are so many conditions that influence a person, that to really teach what I know, I would need to control a student's lifestyle, diet, etc. If you read the reddit forum on meditation, you see there are posts by many, many people who can't sit still to meditate for even five minutes. Someone like that would be able to make more progress at an ashram where their daily life, diet, and practices would be closely controlled.

It's frustrating because there are people to whom I want to say, "I could turn your life upside down and crack open your skull - give you a red pill - if you would give me one month!" They think they want the pill but they don't have the month. And I don't have a month to give them either so I don't make the offer.

I wonder if Jeffery's studies included personality profiles of the interviewees? I'm curious if certain personality types are more inclined to enter PNSE. I would guess introverts are more inclined to have this experience.
His thesis was somewhat related to this. He found that PNSE was not related to ego development, but was related to score on a mysticism scale.

But even if there is a correlation between PNSE and personality type, it doesn't tell you anything about any possible causal relationships. PNSE might be facilitated by a certain personality type or it might cause a certain personality type.


http://pqdtopen.proquest.com/doc/858328943.html?FMT=AI


Ego Development Stage Does Not Predict Persistent
Non-Symbolic Experience
by
Jeffery A. Martin
A Dissertation Submitted to the Faculty of the California Institute of Integral
Studies in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of
Doctor of Philosophy in Transformative Studies
California Institute of Integral Studies
San Francisco, CA
2010
...
Abstract
Non-symbolic experiences have been reported for millennia and generally
attributed to spiritual and religious contexts, although atheists and agnostics also
report them. Popular terms for them include: nondual awareness, enlightenment,
mystical experiences, peak experiences, transcendental experience, the peace that
passeth understanding, unity consciousness, union with God, and so forth. Most
are temporary, but some individuals report a persistent form of them. Some
scholars have argued that these experiences represent advanced stages of human
development and placed them atop existing levels in various domains of
developmental psychology such as cognitive or ego development. There is little
evidence for this view. Moreover, several problems with it are pointed out in the
present work.

The primary goal of this study is to test the above taxonomy by comparing
ego development and Mysticism Scale measurements from a diverse population
of individuals who report persistent non-symbolic experience. This investigation
first hypothesized that individuals who report persistent non-symbolic experience
would exhibit a range of psychological developmental levels, specifically tested
here as a composite, ego development, using the Washington University Sentence
Completion Test (WUSCT). Second, it hypothesized that individuals who report
persistent non-symbolic experience would score higher on Hood's Mysticism
Scale than those who do not report such experiences. Third, it hypothesized the
absence of a simple or linear relationship between scores on the WUSCT and
Mysticism Scale for those who report non-symbolic experience.


These hypotheses were examined in 36 adults (F=9, M=27) reporting
persistent non-symbolic experience. The first hypothesis was supported: ego
development stages ranged from 5 (Loevinger and Cook-Greuter's "Self Aware"
stage) to 10 (Cook-Greuter's "Unitive" stage). The second hypothesis was also
supported: average and median Mysticism Scale scores notably exceeded those
reported in studies of other populations.
The third hypothesis could not be
adequately tested because the Mysticism Scale score distribution was strongly
skewed upwards, making most statistical comparisons unworkable. Overall, this
study provides the first strong evidence that persistent non-symbolic experience
does not represent higher levels of ego development.

This video by Dr Martin discusses the question further.

The playlist containing that video has interesting background on PNSE
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLPjd37sU1TTjuNgQmukfpJkPdwCb98O1F

I disagree... I'm still grinding on #234. Big blindspots like this trouble me... make me question what else the person is missing. At the end of the day I know Rick will figure it out, but his "Republican v. Democrat" paradigm makes me question some of his underlying assumptions.
You should assess a person's statements on their area of expertise differently than you assess their statements on subjects outside their area of expertise. If you ask a movie star about making movies she will tell you something she knows about from direct experience, but if you ask her about politics she has no more authority than you do and will give you answers that are no more right or wrong than anyone else. Most people don't see their own ignorance, because ignorance is like a blind spot, you don't even know it's there.

This is why spiritual teachers should never comment on politics. It leads their followers to the idea that people who hold one belief are good and people who hold another belief are evil. A spiritual teacher should only ask his adherents to pray for the "highest good" - or something equivalent in their belief system - never for any particular outcome. This way everyone on all sides ends up with their intention supporting each other rather than pulling in different directions.

You can work for social change and political causes, but do it separately from your practice of spirituality.

Spiritual teachers are no different than any other person. They have an area of expertise and may have a lot to tell others about that subject. But they are not ethically or morally superior to other people (look at all the sex scandals involving spiritual teachers) and they are no authority in fields outside their area of expertise. When students get hurt by careless spiritual teachers, some of the blame usually belongs to the student as well as the teacher because part of the problem is that people like to fool themselves into worshiping idols. The student mistakenly cedes power to another equally fallible human being. This is one reason I think the enlightenment movement is fundamentally misguided. It elevates the teacher on a false pedestal. What does it tell you about enlightenment when an enlightened teacher misbehaves sexually?

Buddha taught meditation to the monks but when he spoke to householders, he spoke on morality and ethics. If they heeded his words, householders would be protected from enlightened teachers.
 
#42
I was actually only making a joke using the word inoculate, since we had veered off into vaccinations. I doubt Smithy thinks the anti-vaccine people are "crazies."
I most certainly do not think that anti-vaccine people are crazies!
Quite remarkable that apparently I did cause a stir by simply mentioning an observation. :D
Making an observation does not in any way imply that one agrees with what has been observed.
 
#45
I knew that all people had failings, I'm not sure that this was exactly what I was getting at. I'm not talking about having human failings as such, but those failings being unexpected in nature.

For example I might be surprised by finding out that a friend had a drink problem, but that is a sort of normal failing, a human weakness. I'm talking about say someone like Donald Rumsfelt attending a greenpeace rally in Times Square. It wouldn't seem possible. Jurgen wasn't the best example, I would class it as mild to moderate surprise.
 
#46
What's the fuss? I am not critizing anything. I am only mentioning what a few people told me. Does that imply that I agree? Come on!
As for vaccination, I am neither for or against it. When I was a child I had my vaccinations, and never experienced any problems.
Then why did you bring it up? You claim "neither for or against," but your wording seems to contradict that; "I had my vaccinations, and never experienced any problems." Clearly others have experienced problem, while others haven't. That makes it appear as if you are taking sides. So, it's confusing. To me, anyway.

So, from one perspective it could almost be concluded that you were fishing for some negative sentiment traction against Sharyl Attkisson or at least gin a little up. I apologize ahead of time if that wasn't your intention. Something that looks like something, doesn't mean it is that something. You know what I mean.
 
#47
Then why did you bring it up? You claim "neither for or against," but your wording seems to contradict that; "I had my vaccinations, and never experienced any problems." Clearly others have experienced problem, while others haven't. That makes it appear as if you are taking sides. So, it's confusing. To me, anyway.

So, from one perspective it could almost be concluded that you were fishing for some negative sentiment traction against Sharyl Attkisson or at least gin a little up. I apologize ahead of time if that wasn't your intention. Something that looks like something, doesn't mean it is that something. You know what I mean.
Then apologize... and apologies accepted...:D
 
#48
T
Then apologize... and apologies accepted...:D
When you explain what your intent was cogently and not confusingly, as your original response was. That's was implied. Didn't catch that? Now it just looks like what I was hoping it wasn't.

Well alright...thanks for clearing that up.
 
#50
http://www.boredpanda.com/teen-sneaks-vip-band-concert-wikipedia/

This Teen Just Sneaked Into Band’s VIP Section By Simply Editing Its Wikipedia Page

This teen had a brilliant idea when he couldn’t see the band very well at a concert recently

He decided to change their Wikipedia page to say that he was the cousin of the lead singer!

He showed the page to the bouncer, who then allowed him into the VIP section where the view was much better

 
#51
We tried for a while to change the wikipedia entry for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, ...It became a futile endeavour
The same thing happened to me about 15 years ago when I tried to correct some Wikipedia information about a martial art I taught.

The entry was controlled by Mods from a competing martial art. They were expert at manipulating the Byzantine bureaucratic rules of Wikipedia legalism, and willing to devote hours and hours to fight me on even the smallest change.

That's when I learned Wikipedia is worse than biased and political because they vigorously claim they are not. Wikipedia is the very essence of hypocrisy. I learned not to fool with it.
 
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