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Saturday, October 4, 2003

Geek USA

So i'm reading this book called the Psychology of Awakening, concerning "Buddhism, Science, and Our Day-to-Day lives." Well i've gotten through one-third of the book and so far i've read some pretty impassioned and interesting ideas and parallels drawn between traditional Buddhist thought and modern-day philosophy, psychology, and society.

There are a lot of thought-provoking ideas but little to back them up scientifically. Recognizing the emphasis that has been placed on the necessity of including supporting empirical data in order to establish a decently tenable theory, I kind of snuffed, especially at some of the later articles, as being interesting and well-written but, well, shallow.

So when I turned the final page of the last article of the first third of the book and read the opening title of the second part of the book, "Body, Mind and Spirit: the SCIENTIFIC (caps added for emphasis) Perspective." I literally dropped my head back, looked up at the ceiling and exclaimed "Thank God!"

One of Buddhism's main distinguishing features from those other belief systems termed "religions" is the lack of a belief in a higher, authoritative Supreme Being outside and seperate from the individual. So you can imagine me slapping my hands on the table and shaking my head back and forth, chuckling to myself as I realized that I attributed a greater sense of the credibility of Buddhist thought towards God, a supreme being outside and seperate from the individual.

I looked out the window of my classroom, up through the huge skylight of the atrium of the Psychology Building, out at the grey October sky, wrote about this, then realized that I need to get a life.

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