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Tag Archives: mysticism

Samsara

I. The man standing outside my front door was carrying a clipboard and wearing a golden robe. “Not interested,” I said, preparing to slam the door in his face. “Please,” said the acolyte. Before I could say no he’d jammed … Continue reading

The PNSE Paper

I’ve mentioned this a few times, but it’s worth going over in detail. The full title is Clusters Of Individual Experiences Form A Continuum Of Persistent Non-Symbolic Experiences In Adults by Jeffery Martin, with “persistent non-symbolic experience” (PNSE) as a … Continue reading

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Is Enlightenment Compatible With Sex Scandals?

Last year I reviewed The Mind Illuminated, a meditation guide by Buddhist teacher Upasaka Culadasa. Last month, Culudasa’s Buddhist community accused him of cheating on his wife with prostitutes for many years. Culadasa doesn’t seem to agree with the exact … Continue reading

Book Review: The Mind Illuminated

I. The Mind Illuminated is a guide to Buddhist meditation by Culadasa, aka John Yates, a Buddhist meditation teacher who is also a neuroscience PhD. At this point I would be more impressed to meet a Buddhist meditation teacher who … Continue reading

Gupta On Enlightenment

That story about the blockchain-based dating site gets better: its designer is an enlightened being. I got this from Vinay Gupta’s wiki, which describes some of his thoughts and experiences. Since reading Mastering The Core Teachings Of The Buddha, I’ve … Continue reading

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Meditative States As Feedback Loops

Three years ago, in Going Loopy, I wrote: If the brain had been designed by an amateur, it would enter a runaway feedback loop the first time it felt an emotion. Think about it. You see a butterfly. This makes … Continue reading

Book Review: Mastering The Core Teachings Of The Buddha

I. I always wanted to meditate more, but never really got around to it. And (I thought) I had an unimpeachable excuse. The demands of a medical career are incompatible with such a time-consuming practice. Enter Daniel Ingram MD, an … Continue reading

Mysticism and Pattern-Matching

[Epistemic status: Total conjecture.] One of the things that got me interested in psychiatry was the sheer weirdness of the human brain’s failure modes. We all hear that the brain is like a computer, but when a computer breaks, the … Continue reading

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Universal Love, Said The Cactus Person

“Universal love,” said the cactus person. “Transcendent joy,” said the big green bat. “Right,” I said. “I’m absolutely in favor of both those things. But before we go any further, could you tell me the two prime factors of 1,522,605,027, … Continue reading

Against Anton-Wilsonism

Back when I was in college, I loved stuff by Robert Anton Wilson. In case you’re not familiar with him, he was a writer and occultist who recorded all sorts of interesting things from mystical traditions all over the world. … Continue reading

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