Spiritual Musings on Collapse


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    Noah’s Ark – A Picture of Christ As many of you already know, I have written about economic, financial and industrial/environmental collapse on The Au
    [See the full post at: Spiritual Musings on Collapse]

    Basseterre Kitona

    Whoa…wow…I’didn’t see that coming. It’s not April 1st and this place is way too serious for this to be a joke, right?

    At any rate, I’m still grateful for all of the previous writing so I’d like to say Thank you and Good Luck with the future endeavour.


    As a prelude; yes I am clear that there will be a separate site. Yes, I know that there is an active effort to compartmentalize this.

    I feel that any conflation is too much. A separate site without any association or “plug” would have been preferable and I’d not have been even aware of it. Even bringing it up is a problem.

    There are PLENTY of doomsteading and economic collapse sites with PLENTY of metaphysical content. I’ve seen them. I’m still horrified.

    Even an umbilical cord is too much. The serenity is broken.

    I appreciate that I’m oversensitive. I predict that I will see these messages as extremely unwise very shortly.

    Oh well.

    Cheers, one and all.

    –Spiral Insana

    Sir: you are delving into metaphysics. Metaphysics is the flailing of a tortured psyche and not a worthy focus of a balanced and healthy rational mind. Kant was right: metaphysics are impossible. Nietzsche was right; God is dead. Sun Ra of the Sun Ra Arkestra was right; anyone who would see the face of God will die.

    I do not say this lightly.

    The very Abrahamic framework you are discussing has been used to justify the very system you are so appalled by — and some would argue it was responsible for CREATING it.

    You can achieve nothing by reverting to this. Moreover, you are in serious danger of losing what amount of humanity you do have left.

    The people I love the most on this Earth are deeply spiritual. They are also on heavy psychoactive prescriptions because of their various mental disorders. The only exceptions have had mental problems all of their lives and have alienated anyone who has loved them but will not accept help from “godless doctors.” I listen to their ideas with love and patience. But nothing they say has anything to do with the world around them, human nature, how we are going to fix the living mess we are in, or any real experience that I can share with them.

    You are, as it is all too within human nature to do, seeking comfort in ideas and emotions in your own head because they are beautiful, feel intensely real to you, and because they are too vivid for you to believe false. In so doing, you are cutting yourself off from what is really going on outside your head in the real world.

    You are in pain. This is your brain fighting against this pain at any cost. It is essentially an hallucination.

    I say this because I am scared too. My mind has responded in similar ways, but I’ve fought it off as best I can. I do this because I know what comes will require my clearest thinking and fastest action. I do this because the crazy loved ones I mention are the most beautiful people I have ever known and will need me to be sane for them. My tolerance of their insanity is rooted identically to my quest to maintain my own; I am morally obligated to maintain my agency to protect those I love. My atheism is a moral choice.

    Yes, I am suggesting that religious convictions of any sort are indistinguishable from insanity. Yes, I know that this assertion is potentially offensive. That is why I generally do not publicly state as such unless I feel the religious are persecuting me or committing grossly immoral acts and there is no choice except to speak or act. The defacement of the good this site has done by the evocation of religion, mysticism, and/or metaphysics is dangerous. I feel I am forced to respond because of that.

    What damage I can do in speaking out is likely minimal. Human readers will flame me and then regard me as a hateful idiot (this despite the fact that I am doing so because I fear for them and am saying something only to try to be helpful). Then, they will forget me.

    I do not fear harming the Divine in any way, even if such exists. If there really is/are a/any God(s), then He/She/It/THEM is/are powerful enough that He/She/IT/THEY need not worry about my opinion. To the Divine, I am but mobile dirt. Some religions state that there is such thing as forgiveness if I am wrong. If anyone proves me wrong, then I will ask for forgiveness, reverse course, profess my new beliefs with vigor to atone, and all shall be well. There is nothing to fear in that case. As I would rather suffer eternally that submit to an immoral, hateful God, I do not fear unfair damnation either. Nobody need advise me of my metaphysical rights and obligations; I am clear on this point.

    On the other hand, the Divine has a lot to answer to the Human race for, in my opinion. A Divine agency could have prevented all the misery the human race endures if it really were all loving or all powerful. It could at least have been more direct and honest about its own existence. In other words, I say that reality’s imperfection and misery are adequate refutation of the existence of the Divine without further argument. I cannot see how the thesis that there exists an all loving, all powerful God could possibly be taken seriously. The logic is irrefutable and there is no escape.

    I say the human race is responsible for its disposition and that there is no appeal outside to any power for either deliverance or to blame our failings on. I say that faith of this sort is a distraction. I go beyond this and insist that even if I am sorely wrong about all of this, we shouldn’t have any mention of anything metaphysical on a site devoted to practical human problems. God is not the answer to something that is our fault. I would imagine any God being cross (pun intended) at anyone dragging Him/Her/It/Them into this mess. Worse, counting how many angels fit on pin heads is a distraction at best and a dangerous misuse of intellect at worst. This site should devote energy to D.I.Y. project advice and actually fulfill its promise to produce a workable preparation guide. Such activities are distracting, fulfilling, and practical. They could also be fun. Instead, we get a sermon. If a wanted that, there is a living, breathing schizophrenic preaching down the street who could suffice for that function.

    I protest this loudly and harshly because you have made it clear that you now endanger my ability to maintain my own sanity. I have used this web site and read words from yourself and your colleagues to keep my perspective honed and balanced on the issues of global finance. I read things here to remain rational.

    While I have the deepest sympathy for you, you have become a threat to my goal. I must stop reading your work, and possibly everything on this site. While you assure us that your mystical or metaphysical writing “is not being supported or endorsed by Ilargi or Stoneleigh,” and that does reassure me somewhat that they are still thinking rationally, it would be far better for them to disassociate themselves entirely from your message. To fail to do so is extremely dangerous. This is not enough of a distancing. This stretches the function of the site and its mission incorrectly. I am, frankly, horrified.

    Beyond even all that, I am shocked at how you seem to be proposing to cure the ills of modern Western culture by running into the arms of its dysfunctional metaphysical mother. The big three Abrahamic religions have made the world financial system’s exploitation of native peoples possible by providing pseudo-moral, cosmic-scale justifications for genocide, cultural homogenization, the suppression of thought and diversity, and the dehumanization of anyone who fails to adopt strictly codified systems of behavior and thought. It is a unilateral disaster, however badly you feel practitioners of these faiths have upheld the principles of their founders. The record of these religions, bathed in blood as it is, speaks for itself. Any failure to accept this is merely willful ignorance of genocide.

    I beg you to clear your head. You are transforming this metaphysical ideology free island into a battleground for destructive arguments over pure hypothetical suppositions and superstition. Modern Capitalist economics is also superstitious ideology about purely hypothetical phenomena. It is exactly this sort of thinking that must be combated and defeated to assure the continued survival of the Human race. You propose to replace one set of delusions for another. This is extremely dangerous at best.

    I am essentially insisting that you are now “the enemy.” I fear that now even this site will harbor flame wars blaming the economic collapse on sodomy, poor church attendance, divorce, African Americans, women wearing trousers and voting, the very existence of Lady Gaga, and so on.

    You may in fact not, one could hope, irrationally hate sexual minorities or ethnicities other than your own. You still endorse a metaphysical system that makes such “othering” possible. If the solution had existed within the words and precepts of the Abrahamic traditions, then the sons and daughters of Abraham would have presented it to the grateful world long ago. You are leading us back into more of the same under a different guise. The same exact sorts of problems are inevitable. Your solution to both your own psychological and the entire world’s cultural problems is essentially the hair of the dog that bit you.

    I reject and denounce this. I beg you to reconsider your stance.

    Failing that, know that I still value your life and individual rights. Know that I value you as a moral agent and a feeling being. Finally, rest assured that I send this afraid that it may wound your feelings or those of others. I only do this because I have a shred of hope that it may make a positive impact somewhere on someone, even if it is only to teach me never to do anything like this again.

    It is your right to do what you are doing and I will defend it. I just think it is dangerously irrational. I also think it is my right to say so. I would hope you can respect my right to say this.

    I do wish you the best regardless of what happens. I do hope your ideas bring you peace and happiness. It is simply a misfortune that they have caused me a lot of grief. I know this is not what you intended. Nevertheless, the damage is now done.

    Please take care of yourself as best you can.


    Spiral Insana


    In reply to myself; yes I am clear that there will be a separate site. Yes, I know that there is an active effort to compartmentalize this.

    I feel that any conflation is too much. A separate site without any association or “plug” would have been preferable and I’d not have been even aware of it. Even bringing it up is a problem.

    There are PLENTY of doomsteading and economic collapse sites with PLENTY of metaphysical content. I’ve seen them. I’m still horrified.

    Even an umbilical cord is too much. The serenity is broken.

    I appreciate that I’m oversensitive. I predict that I will see these messages as extremely unwise very shortly.

    Oh well.

    Cheers, one and all.

    –Spiral Insana


    I wondered why we haven’t heard much from you Ashvin. I’m sad to see you have turned to ancient mysticism. Been there, done that my friend. Maybe it will turn out better for you.

    Viscount St. Albans

    Ash and Matt Savinar

    Your arc of emotional development closely traces Matt Savinar’s spiritual evolution. For you, Ash, it’s Judeo Christianity. For Savinar, it was Astrology

    For those who don’t know him: Matt Savinar is, like Ash, a young lawyer who withdrew from his professional training to examine peak oil and societal collapse.

    Savinar built and maintained the highly popular LATOC forum (life-after-the-oil-crash) from 2005-2010. His writings on peak oil were highlighted in congressional testimony.

    Then, sometime around late 2010, he had an emotional breakdown. He abruptly shut-down LATOC (much to the dismay of the users, several thousand at that point) he shut down the website and shifted all of his time and energy to Astrology.

    A link to Matt Savinar at his LATOC peak in 2006 (prior to breakdown) discussing the writing of Jay Hanson:

    A link to angry discussions from LATOC readers following the abrupt termination of LATOC forum:

    Matt Savinar’s recent writings on Astrology:


    Wow. Just. Wow.

    On a lighter note (I just had to make an account to say this): [strike]If[/strike] when there will be chanting in the hills, I prefer Ash does the sacrifices, for he can’t sharpen a knife worth a damn. 😛
    Lighten up, dudes, it hasn’t started yet. We still have a few …maybe weeks? What will you do then?



    I need information and reason to make decisions about the future of my household. Religion ain’t it, especially the Abrahamic-flavored ones. Let’s hope to see no more of this kind of thing here, and I regretfully will not take future posts from Ash with the same consideration as previously. I tried to participate in other online communities with similar outlooks on ‘doom’ and economics but that were majority christians. It wasn’t possible to coexist with that level of self-disillusion.

    I hope TAE distances itself from this religion nonsense.

    Golden Oxen

    Why do I sense Lucifer on this thread, spewing out evil, hatred and venom at a wonderful brilliant person that has nothing but good intentions in his heart and mind?


    In reference to the posting by Golden Oxen
    that is, posting #5252

    One reason why you could sense Lucifer is because that is how you explain any evidence or expressed opinion contrary to your held beliefs. Another possibility is that I and those who think like me are deluded by forces that we cannot control and which must be overcome before we can see the truth.

    The most rational course in either case is to first use whatever spiritual techniques you believe effective to remove any curse on myself and others so afflicted and, then, engage in rational debate so that I am either freed from this evil external force or you are freed of your delusions spawned by emotional pain and psychological trauma.

    A morally unjustified course is to condemn us vaguely, fail to defend your point of view, fail to pray for us, and fail to take our ideas seriously.

    It would be a violation of the precepts of your faith to deprive us of a chance to experience the truth by your inaction. It is also presumably a violation of the precepts of your faith to “cast the first stone” if the letter of your texts are to be taken seriously.

    How will you act knowing the above?

    –Spiral Insana


    Before I get a rapid excommunication to the Bowels of Hell from which I spawned, I should say that the knife reference was a joke and Ash will surely get it. If other members don’t get it, GO ahead with the exorcisms! 👿


    Was it Stoneleigh who said that people move to majical thinking when things become too tough? Speaking from personal experience, at times I find it is an effort to stay in the gritty, tough world of rationality in spite of the havoc we here are all so very highly atuned to in our world. I hope you will continue to spend some time with us Ash on this rational journey because you have much to offer and we need all the help we can get.


    I’m with Spiral on this. I have the huge benefit of being surrounded by loving, caring, active and deeply committed atheists so I am free of the extra burden that SI carries. But nevertheless, I wake in the small hours a couple of times a week to acknowledge the scale and depth of my anxiety and the predicament that is causing it. I too worry that I will not be up to what is coming, however well I may have “prepared” for it. But, whatever the process and the outcome, there is no room in my cognitive apparatus for the booming certainties driven by ancient existential angst. Like BK, I wish you well, but I also bid you farewell. This is a place for hard-eyed, grounded people able to stare into the abyss and overcome their gfear that it might stare back.


    Hi Ashvin,

    I’ve greatly appreciated your musings on this site since I started reading it, and have found it intrigueing to ponder where your relationship with God was, especially in recent months. I’ve been actively looking for people who are pondering the circumstances we find ourselves in from a spiritual position, and very much look forward to reading your further work in this direction.

    To those on this blog who are quick to dismiss Ashvins step change in focus as the ranting of a madmad, I would offer a few resources to ponder:
    https://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/130 – Orthodoxy by GK Chesterton. A great book about the journey to the outer reaches of humanistic modern philisophical thought, where the author finds himself on well trodden trails.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zen_and_the_Art_of_Motorcycle_Maintenance – There are many mental paths that can lead to madness, and foremost among these is trying to create reason of the impenetrable, mysterious, perhaps even ineffable conundrums that we face daily.
    I’d also offer the observation that perhaps we need to undergo a mental collapse of some sort, particularly with regard to self-reliance, in order to accept the change underway, and look with an open mind at the possibilities on offer (as JMG points out in https://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.co.nz/2012/06/collapse-now-and-avoid-rush.html). I know I’ve felt that I’m undergoing something akin to this personally and feel better placed, having come through a period of doomer-gloom similar to that Ashvin described above, and I’ve been very glad of the hope that my faith offered through this ‘dark night of the soul’. I’d also observe that the denial prevalent in our society regarding the inevitability of some of the topics under contemplation on this and related blogs is some form of mental illness in itself.

    I’m reminded of the following passage from THHGTTG:
    ” Though his throat was sore again from his early morning yell of horror, he was suddenly in a terrifically good mood. He wrapped his dilapidated dressing gown tightly around him and beamed at the bright morning.

    The air was clear and scented, the breeze flitted lightly through the tall grass around his cave, the birds were chirruping at each other, the butterflies were flitting about prettily, and the whole of nature seemed to be conspiring to be as pleasant as it possibly could.

    It wasn’t all the pastoral delights that were making Arthur feel so cheery, though. He had just had a wonderful idea about how to cope with the terrible lonely isolation, the nightmares, the failure of all his attempts at horticulture, and the sheer futurelessness and futility of his life here on prehistoric Earth, which was that he would go mad.

    He beamed again and took a bite out of a rabbit leg left over from his supper. He chewed happily for a few moments and then decided formally to announce his decision.

    He stood up straight and looked the world squarely in the fields and hills. To add weight to his words he stuck the rabbit bone in his hair. He spread his arms out wide.

    “I will go mad!” he announced.

    “Good idea,” said Ford Prefect, clambering down from the rock on which he had been sitting.

    Arthur’s brain somersaulted. His jaw did press-ups.

    “I went mad for a while,” said Ford, “did me no end of good.”

    “You see,” said Ford, “— …”

    “Where have you been?” interrupted Arthur, now that his head had finished working out.

    “Around,” said Ford, “around and about.” He grinned in what he accurately judged to be an infuriating manner. “I just took my mind off the hook for a bit. I reckoned that if the world wanted me badly enough it would call back. It did.” “
    SOURCE FOR THE ABOVE QUOTE:https://www.angelfire.com/ca3/tomsnyder/hg-3-02.html

    The above quote I like for it’s humour (you may have to view it in context to ‘get it’) and also for the notion that isolation can be potentially far more metally toxic and destabilising than community. As such, whatever your personal views / experience of church life, I hope people can see that there’s some truth in a thought I heard expressed in the last couple of years – the church is the modern custodian of living in community. We all have much to learn from faith communities that choose to live in closer relationship than is the societal norm, as there are not many other places where such a diverse group of people, from all walks of life are drawn together to try and live as a tribe. As it’s often pointed out in the ‘doomersphere’ there are many who perceive that localism and therefore living in far closer relationship than we’re used to in materially wealthy societies is an inevitable consequence of collapse. There are many churches today where it’s more important that you belong, than believe or behave (particularly if they have a strong focus on God’s grace – great teaching in the astronomical grace series here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/destiny-church/id321106392), and I’d encourage those interested to seek out such groups as a ‘crash course’ in community.

    For those more inclined to dismiss Ashvin’s musings as obviously unscientific, and therefore of no interest, I offer the following:
    https://mb-soft.com/public/duality.html – apply some scientific rigour to evidence and proof around christianity, and particularly the hot potato that is evolution / creation. I’ve not been able to pick major holes in it, but my knowledge of the current science is lacking a bit.
    Along with the above, i would point out that in much of the comment submitted by many of the most thoughtful contributors to TAE demonstrate lines of reasoning that would indicate a spiritual perspective is at least a consideration, if not primary motivation. If you’ve derived value from the discussion, as I know I have, I would ask that you consider how much you value truth, whatever it’s source, and why you might have an urge to ‘throw the baby out with the bathwater’..

    I would offer the following blog/book as an interesting lead in the search for further revelation / inspiration as to spiritual influences to collapse. https://elizaphanian.blogspot.co.nz/p/about-my-book.html Whilst I felt he focused a bit too much on one aspect of relationship with God (holy communion), I found much that was enlightening, and particularly liked the reference to the prophet Jeremiah and the parallels that can be drawn between the time he lived in and our own. JMG seems interested, judging by his comment on the page, and I hope it’s of use to you.

    Finally, Ashvin, I’ve no idea as to your musical tastes, but these guys (https://www.lampmode.com/lyrics/) have some serious ‘lyrical theology’ that has been a source of comfort and help to me, even if I’m not 100% in agreement.

    Grace and Peace to all the readers of this comment!

    David Peter

    Hi Ashvin

    I’ve followed some of your posts on TAE (my user name = David Peter) over the past year where I find your perspectives are rewarding to read.

    Along my path striving to picture and follow Christ, I am studying theologian James Alison as well as anthropologist René Girard.

    If you have some time (which is so precious) to give James’ website
    a brief look over to see whether you like it, I believe you will find rewarding views along your way to picturing and following Christ. I would be interested to hear what you think.

    At the moment I am reading Michael Hardin’s book “The Jesus Driven Life” (not to be confused with Rick Warren’s book “Purpose Driven Life”).

    From the rear cover of the book: “Will the real Jesus please stand up? … What has happened as Jesus, the rabbi from Galilee, has been displaced as the centre of the Christian faith and replaced with false portraits? How can we understand the relation between this nonviolent Jesus and the ‘violent God’ of most Christian traditions? … Utilizing the work of René Girard, ‘The Jesus Driven Life’ takes us beyond the dead ends and false trails of Christian interterpretation of the Bible.”


    Good luck with your blog, Ash.

    I’m glad you will have a place to quote a bunch of the bible. While that is not my path, I’m glad it gives others a boost and you have a place other than TAE to discuss all that.

    I have appreciated your past thinking and compassion for the 99% and your essays that have focused on helping each other in the “coming hard times”.

    Community is an important aspect of prepping for the future and you have frequently stood up for the poor and underdogs of this world. That is one aspect of Xianity that I appreciate. The Catholic Workers are one group that have done some really fine work and the Quakers too.

    Again – best of luck to you.


    The evangelicals, like many religious groups, have a “platform” of precepts that are sometimes adopted wholesale by people within the faith. These precepts are presented as the Word of God – not open to interpretation or dispute by mere mortals.

    Some of these precepts are great stuff. Other precepts I find to be intolerant self-righteous crap. And because both the good stuff AND the crap is said to be the Word of God, there’s really no discussing the stuff I see as the crappy bits in any reasonable way with the “true believers” who adopt the platform wholesale. Who can possibly argue with the Word of God? (Logical fallacy: appeal to authority; I claim God didn’t say it, some guy did)

    Many people, whom I view as somewhat wiser, are members of said religious groups, and yet see fit to ignore or gloss over the crappy bits.

    As a result of meeting these people, I try to determine what sort of person someone is prior to assuming they believe everything in the platform 100%. After all, one goal of mine is to co-exist harmoniously with many types of people, not simply the ones who agree 100% with everything that I believe.

    So while I completely disagree with a lot of evangelical precepts, if we stick to the subjects of love and faith and we ignore what I see as the crappy bits, I’d have a lot to talk about with an evangelical.

    As for issues of faith being “magical thinking” (where magical is defined as idiotic, futile, and/or dangerously stupid) I’d like to point out the placebo effect is a product of nothing more than faith – in this case, faith in western medicine. This effect is so strong that it will result in positive medical outcomes from sugar pills in 33% of cases. Its why drug trials are always double-blind placebo-controlled.

    Can faith have power in the real world over and above the placebo effect? Certainly faith in ones own ability is quite important to successfully executing many real-world tasks. Backflips, martial arts techniques, interviews – all benefit from faith in ones-self that could ultimately be viewed as “magical” in nature. Yet if the magic goes away, your efforts tend to fail, regardless of the amount of training you’ve had. Faith in banking, fiat currency – faith really does have impact. Perhaps that impact IS magical (in this case, “impossible to explain”), and this confounds those of us who see existence as strictly physical.

    Can faith do more than that? That is an interesting question; I think so, but it is something I haven’t resolved to my own satisfaction just yet. And that’s my spiritual journey.

    Well that’s my opinion anyway. Good luck Ash with your new site.


    The spiritual site is part of our human existence and it is worthwile to nurture this site.
    However I strongly feel that Christian thinking has immensely contributed to the predicament we are finding ourselves today. The “culture of death” that is celebrated today by the Empire is deeply rooted in the Christian myths and superstitions. That is how I feel. Good look with your spiritual journey.


    I finished reading to my atheist 13 year old the other day “All quiet on the Western Front” and told him “There are no atheist in fox-holes”. He was adamant that there is no God, etc. (so it shows that a kid can’t feel the depths of such literature at all) But I interpreted it for him that in times of great distress like war you find self doubt and not the arrogance of the modern easy life.

    Regardless of the answers one finds, which are of emotional import, they have to be specific to us and our situation. I got hinduism (one says “I found Jesus” in Christianity) and do yoga and Tai Chi -astrology is a part of that culture too (Chinese, Indian and Arabs have their own systems). Muslims have Sufi mystical system for example as well as catholics having mystical system (where does that Halo come from and the marks on jesus hands? Those are chakras of course- which you feel f you develop kundalini enough through years of practice).

    We are not going to stop waht we earned already as humanity for our sins against nature, that is physical and spiritual karma (Newton’s equal and opposite reaction law) as we see in the arctic and elsewhere today so we have to confront death and perhaps worse for us and our children and that leads us to God or to finidng god in us or our spiritual center and self examination. Self truth can be a bitter medicine. Perhaps an atheist can take this better as he/she would be also a realist without any false hopes.



    I enjoy your posts on automaticearth and have learned a lot from them.
    As regards religion,Here are some thoughts.No criticism/confrontation meant..

    The basic problem is in externalizing God. Then there will be an external Devil.
    Now , we will have 3. Me, God, Devil. Each will limit the other. So we will end up with a limited Me(a relatively powerless Being), a Limited God(a very powerful being), and a Limited Devil(another very powerful Being).

    Perhaps you have already done so….Maybe it may be worth exploring the roots of the name you bear. Here is one perspective on it. (please dont take it as patronising..I am exploring the possibilities of the meaning of the sanskrit words here, an hobby of mine)

    Ashvin=THe twin healers of the gods(symbolic representation).THey bring word of the unlimited.In a world that is fragmented by separated/individualized objects/beings , where is the unlimited?what can be ever present? the ones who bring this knowledge are the Ashvins..and this knowledge does not pertain to a limited human’s notions of good/bad , God devil etc.As long as you separate humans from one another as distinct persona,one’s good is the other’s bad.Not limited to names/appellations like this religion or that religion.In fact it transcends them.

    Pandu=>colloquial meaning=> a fruit(a mature object,fully ripe)
    Paandu=> A person/thing knowledge that is fully mature(ripe)=>transcends the trivial.
    Ranga=> Colored by the knowledge .Every thing /person/knowledge we perceive is distinguished from something else, even as one color is distinct from the other.But when one transcends these distinctions, everything gets swallowed into one particular paradigm/knowledge.One who has this quality of relating everything to the infinite and is never separated from it, is called PaanduRanga..

    THe little I have read of the bible(old/new test) seems to me to be loaded with symbolism. One can interpret it in the way of the majority with an external god/devil and me that is separate. One can also relate it back to the upanishads for an extremely different perspective. The difference, in my opinion, is almost as big as climbing the map vs climbing the mountain.


    Hi Ashvin,

    After all, faith is truly nothing if it is not tested…
    I have only been a Christian for about a year now, so I hope to learn a lot more about my own faith from this experience, while hopefully motivating others to learn more about theirs as well.

    The biggest problem to recognise is the difference between ‘religion’, which has its roots in the notion of obligation and true spirituality which (imho) is much more about the edict ‘know thyself’. Check out what post-modern sage George Carlin has to say:


    & ‘The Big Club’ – ‘no critical thinking’ allowed:

    If you want a true insight into the ‘path’ that xtianity has to offer check out Bernadette Roberts and her inspiring interview here.

    Good luck with your research – all I can suggest is (which is what the Buddha also said) is to investigate everything for yourself and take nobodies word for it! You have to find what works for you…




    Good luck with your new site, Ash. I’m sure you’ll find your walk continually interesting and inspiring. I do hope you keep posting here, too. TAE has been richer because of your contributions.

    If you haven’t already, you should check out some of the writings of Francis Collins, the world-renowned geneticist and evangelical Christian.


    Hi Ash,

    Congratulations on adding a new dimension to your “walk” on this spinning orb flying through space. 🙂

    I’ll be sure to stop by as all things God fascinate me. I do get why people are turned off to “religion,” though. They confuse the bad human examples with the real thing that says humans will always be bad examples. 😉

    One note, though. What happened to the online version of A Century of Challenges? The original site is down and I can’t access it.

    Can you give a status as to when/where it will be back up?


    This article was simply meant as a plug for the new blog, not as an opportunity for me to defend my faith here. I have noticed a few people raised points of substantive criticism, and I encourage them to express that on PC. I am more than willing to get into substantive debates there over spiritual issues… and smash the atheist worldview to pieces :ohmy:

    For those who raised no substance whatsoever, but just made wild accusations of Christianity being “magical”, “irrational”, or otherwise unworthy of even the slightest consideration, I would ask them to reflect on WHY they have such a knee-jerk response. I also encourage them to visit the site, check out the content, keep an open mind and then express their specific concerns. I am confident at least a few people will reconsider what they thought they knew about the Christianity and the Bible, just as I did. Its richness and depth is absolutely stunning when you actually consider it seriously.

    My mind is not working any differently than it was a year ago before I came to faith. I still think rationally, logically, analytically and critically about everything, including Christianity and other religions. I spend a lot of time listening to the critics of Christianity to see what kind of substantive arguments they are making, and what kind of responses are available to them. I never hesitate to acknowledge that there are many difficult questions raised by Christianity, but I also never hesitate to try and answer them honestly.

    To all those who expressed support, thank you and I hope we can continue discussing these vital issues over at PC. David Peter, I just started looking into Girard’s work, but here is a link to my latest post that focuses on his “scapegoat mechanism” – https://picturingchrist.org/the-devils-scapegoat/. I’d love to know what you think! And to those who expressed a greater affinity for Eastern spiritual traditions, I will probably spend a lot of time discussing that over at PC, so please feel free to drop by and join in.

    Triv, that’s very well said – “they confuse the bad human examples with the real thing that says humans will always be bad examples”! The Bible itself is filled with examples about how hypocritical the “faithful” can be, but I guess a lot of people don’t really pick up on that… selective reading and all…

    Spiral Insana, I see your frustration with my beliefs, I acknowledge your rejection and denouncement, but I am not going to “reconsider my stance”. If you want, you can make your arguments against the Abrahamic traditions on and then we can discuss them there… When I emailed Ilargi about posting this plug, I said this:

    The only problem would be the fact that I am already associated with TAE, and people who are inherently antagonistic to Christianity might decide to take that out on TAE…

    I truly hope that I am wrong about that. PC is not associated with TAE in any way, and obviously TAE is not a site about religion or spirituality, while PC is almost entirely about those things. There is really no need to conflate the two just because Ilargi and Nicole were kind enough to help me get the word out about my new blog.


    One thing I know for sure is that religion will retake the place of economics, finance and law. There are a lot of future prospects right there.


    Speaking of religion gets me all fired up… can’t resist speaking my mind on this issue… so here goes.(you may disagree, as this is a topic most seem to believe they have the right belief.. all sewed up, nothin’ further to discuss.) especially fundamentalist of all stripes.

    There’s that old saying that human beings didn’t come with an instruction manual. Well, you can put that to rest. In 1955 The Urantia Book was published. Imagine the excitement of those few who had access to the papers from about 1924 to 1955… only on the premises of what was to become the headquarters of the Urantia Foundation, they were not allowed to take them off premise.

    The great day came to much excitement when the world could know the truth of our existence, and… nothing. More than 50 years later, still nothing. Only a relative few have read and accepted the truths contained within. But, that’s human beings.

    We had the creator of our local universe here on earth in the guise of human form a mere 2000 years ago… and we all know what happened to him. HOWEVER, once you’ve discovered the history of the human race, our seeming failure to perceive truth even when laid out before us becomes easier to understand.

    I have coined all so-called religious beliefs in existence before the publishing of this book, Evolutionary Belief Systems – evolutionary BS for short. These differences have caused great destruction in the past; looks like they will continue dividing us in the near future. And while it may take decades or more for this realization, it is literally true that we are all brothers, even in the physical sense; especially so in the spiritual sense.

    Someday, 10 or a hundred or more years from now, those who come after us will widely accept the contents of this book. Only then can we call ourselves civilized human beings, for now we are no more than rank savages.


    A “well found” acquaintance once remarked, “My old man told me at a very young age, that if I wanted to live a long and happy life, stay away from doctors, politicians and preachers.” Point taken, and it has worked for me so far. Guess I’m just suspicious of the supernatural, having observed the unintended consequences of such “faith” in it, and other, “polishing solutions” for the rough edges of life.

    I suppose, if my soul ever wanders from within and becomes lost, I can always summon “outside” assistance in relocating it.


    Hi Ash
    I have usually enjoyed your many comments and articles here on TAE, however unconcise the usual presentation. IMO you have taken the wrong fork in the road. In Southern towns, there is a direct proportion between church spire density and observed xenophobia and hateful intolerance. And in this case, I think the positive correlation DOES indicate causality. I look forward to your comments in the future, but please leave the religious commentary on PC.


    The progression of divine nature…polytheism, deity anthropomorphism, deity astralazation, to monotheism is a bumpy road. What inference patterns are you using to favor one god over many? What inference patterns are you using to favor the bible over many spiritual writings?

    Holy books/writings/oral traditions are mutually underdetermined 

    Deities are mutually underdetermined 

    Even the books within the bible are mutually underdetermined with books that were not selected as bible material. Hence the over 200 versions of the bible .  What bible to you adhere to?

    One can appreciate the compassion and love morals of the bible, but most of it is a means of social control and social cohesion.

    This mutual underdetermination of religious belief Is why people have been killing each other for millennia. God vs god, book vs book.

    I believe we are at a critical time in human history where primitive religions are selected out and go extinct. They were adaptive social constructs that became wide spread because altruism was favored in a group selection. 

    WW3 is the perfect selection force of religious evolution. Let the Christians, Jews and Muslims kill each other, each in the name of their god. Using hegalian .dialectic tptb will demonize the mutual underdetermination  of primitive religions and propose a new world religion based on the divinity of planet earth. Everyone needs air, food and water. Planet earth provides food air and water. Planet earth has a degree of divinity. This simple reality is hard to underdetermine. In the face of ecological collapse and threats to human posterity on this planet the people of this earth need a new religious reality (not belief) that does not contradict biophysical reality. 

    7billion people believing the earth is flat does not make it flat. Belief is not correlated with truth. Humans need to plot a trajectory away from falsehood towards truth. We may only be able to approach truth asymptotically, but at least we would be on a path of progression. Christianity, Islam, Judaism are stagnant. Entities that to not embrace change and adapt to the changing environment are evolutionary dead ends. 

    Time for religious reality and the age of reason. The age of illumination.

    All great things emerge from chaos


    Ashvin, you have always been a kind and understanding soul. I wish you all the best in your search, and look forward to reading more of your good articles. Thank you.


    Anyone who has a fundamental belief in a god is not someone I would trust to explain anything. Overwhelming circumstantial evidence shows that believing and praying to a god (take your choice) is a fruitless pursuit except for the temporary relief one might get from that.

    Four people die in Libya from an attack (believers in their god) and everyone asks god to give the families peace. Why was god so powerless to stop the attack? This is not a test of faith..it is simply there is no god to do it.

    Religious people constantly promote this false belief which only gives false hope or worst case they kill those who don’t go along with them. In all the disasters why don’t the believers just wait for god to help? Because they truly know only humans will do it. Religion is the worst invention of mankind.
    Ashvin you are wasting your time.


    Best wishes on your inner spiritual journey, Ashvin. I began my inner journey within a Christian sect and have gradually moved toward a sort of earthy mystical atheism. I recognize there are still some valuable ideas taught by the old religious stories. Apparently these stories repeat themselves through time: this explains similarities between religions of different places and eras. And the similarities demonstrate both the lie that these story events ever took place and the truth of the perennial philosophy they convey. Hence the wisdom that the Jesus of Nazereth purportedly taught is more important than for instance Paul of Tarsus’s later interpretation of his life story which it turns out is not really Jesus’ life story at all, if we compare it to the story of Egypt’s Horus for instance.

    I have found that personal spiritual journey can begin with or without a belief in a supreme deity. A healthy mix of open-mindedness and logical skepticism will see you through. The journey stalls when those 2 go out of balance. Many fanatical adherents to religious sects lose their way when they refuse to question religious authority. Many atheists lose their way when they refuse to investigate their own powerful spiritual energy.

    Christian philosophy is merely one of many fine ways of exploring that power.

    Good luck.


    Ashvin! Karibuni nymbani na familia ya Mungu Baba na Mwanawake Yesu Kristo!

    I’ve been reading TAE since Sept 2010 and enjoy, not that that’s always the right word depending on what’s being discussed/revealed, it very much. Thanks so much for all the effort and likewise to Ilargi and Stoneleigh too (who I saw/heard in Hamilton, New Zealand, but didn’t meet personally due to work time constraints).
    I sensed something was happening with you as metaphysical themes became of more interest to you and am not at all surprised to hear that our good Lord was behind your quest for the truth. Jesus found me out 40yrs ago at age 6 and despite my own lack of understanding what He was really about until more recent times (severe suffering was a huge part of that – thanks Lord!) I have found Jesus Christ to be absolutely faithful to His promises.
    Great to see you have the guts to nail your flag to the mast as you set about sharing your journey with us at your new blog. And big kudos to Stoneleigh and Ilargi for agreeing to post your post despite, I would guess their probable ideological opposition to it. I love their take on so much stuff. TAE encouraged me along the path I was already on. I’ve never borrowed money, have always waited until I had the cash. Patience really is a virtue despite nearly everyone mocking those who practice it. I refused to borrow not from fear but because I thought that too often the system rewarded the wrong behaviour. Behaviour ultimately harmful to society. I’ve learnt to be content with little or much.

    While your revelation has severely ruffled the feathers of many TAE readers censorship is never the solution if truth is truthfully being sought. As a writer and rational thinker you surpass me but I do own a science degree along with many years applying it in farming in both NZ and Tanzania. I’ve also done years of practical volunteer community development work in NZ, Tanzania and Uganda.
    This work taught me how badly so many Christian organisations do at ‘helping’ in a big picture lasting way as well as in the short term. We make blunders at the micro and monumental level. But that is OUR fault not God’s. In fact, despite liking my colleagues and the locality a lot, I resigned from my last position in Uganda due to them persisting with methods that my decade in Africa showed me don’t work. So your post on ‘white saviour guilt complexes etc’ did not insult me. As always peoples true motives are often unknown to themselves as well as others. That said, Christians still do some good at times and, generally speaking here (there are always exceptions), they are the only ones doing it as soon as it becomes remote and underpaid. The different UN development orgs are in my experience the most conflicted and corrupted and self-interested in the development religion world. My how humanism can be a racket beyond all rackets.
    Right now I’ve been working a year helping reintergrate released prisoners back into NZ society. Again, the majority of those working as volunteers are folk serving Jesus Christ. The men I help have, in some cases, done violent despicable things that would repulse me to the core if it were not for my knowledge of my own sins being covered by the grace of God through Christs atonement for them. I’m amazed at the love for these guys (from many different races, age groups, cultures, beliefs and religions) that God has enabled me to have and the complete lack of fear I can have because I know God has me here for His reasons not mine. It’s never to late to repent, but if they don’t care to we still love them however we can practically and relationally. Yes these men have been, or still are, terrible creeps and predators but if our justice system says they have paid their debt then we must all support them in many ways when they come out of prison not just leave them alone to fail. Love always involves risk.

    As far as the claims against you now, re the lack of ‘rational’ thinking, I suggest checking out these sites, amoung others, for those thinking we God believers and creationists are mental writeoffs.

    Perry Marshall is an electrical engineer and for quite some years now a world expert on Google Adwords marketing. I met him extremely briefly at a conference in Australia in 2004 where he was presenting. He is no slouch as his challenge re information theory will show. https://www.cosmicfingerprints.com/dna-atheists/

    Glenn Miller is also an electrical engineer and IT man. His site looks ancient because it is 🙂 Guess he’s too busy to revamp it. https://christianthinktank.com/

    Creation.com is a good resource site. I’ve met Dr. Jonathan Sarfarti who has a few books out easily debunking the likes of the very loud Sqwaukin’ Dawkins https://creation.com/the-collapse-of-geologic-time

    As for your own personal spiritual growth Ashvin, pray and study scripture and also read anything by A.W. Tozer, Os Guiness, Andrew Murray’s “Waiting on God, J.I.Packer’s “Knowing God” and John Piper’s works re the Supremacy of Christ. And don’t miss Henry Blackaby’s “Experiencing God” – God used this to open my spiritual eyes and ears which, together with God speaking directly to me by various ways, has changed my life quite radically. Plenty more of course…but most importantly keep knowing Jesus Christ as your goal in all you do!

    And people totally misunderstand Paul – he wrote the letter to the Galatians to help them avoid ‘religion’ and all it’s associated performance of works to please God. In Phillipians he counts all that religious stuff in his past as ‘rubbish’. His overarching desire was to know Christ and the power of His resurrection life. He was a totally rational man as well as a very spiritual one (he had visions etc – any reader who considers themselves more spiritual; can you claim such as well as still argue rationally). Both go together like the two oars on a rowboat. Pulled together you head somewhere, but on their own you just go around in circles.

    This has got long so I’ll post some simple thoughts of mine re truth on your new Pictures of Christ blog rather than here. Once again thanks Ashvin! My best regards to all commenters and lurkers too.


    Sorry to see a member of the writers group of this blog and some commenters veer so far into religious babble. That’s what it is. Babble.

    Like some have said, “Been there, done that”. I had, as a child, great ‘faith’ and believed in the RCC – even to the point of wanting to be a nun! When I discussed that with the head-nun of my high school, she worked VERY hard to talk me OUT OF IT. She left the convent a couple of years later. She did not mention nun-rape nor child abuse. I had to learn about that on my own.
    ALL religions devolve into this. The moral motivation vanishes pretty quickly after the ‘founders’ passing – e.g., Saul of Tarsus… what an ignoble, misogynist crank.
    Major creation MYTHS are very similar across religions – what does this tell you, Ash?? All based on the same inherent HUMAN myth-world. Take the ennobling parts of the myths and reject the formal structure of authority and control that all religions DEMAND. They require you to reject your own self-determination and buy your way to redemption. BS.

    I have had the pleasure of meeting and dining with Stoneleigh and Ilargi. They are very realistic, compassionate, grounded pragmatists about the state of things. They have, lucky for us, not devolved into magical thinking to flesh out their world-view. We have come through the Enlightenment. We remember it. We want to live in a world that is dominated by rational thought not dogmatism and superstition. The BASIS of ALL religions is SUPERSTITION.

    These myopic, cruel, humanity-hating religions are the main reason we are where we are. What other organization in the world has a 2,000 year history – but the RCC? Drug money-laundering, pederast org that it is. It controls a LOT more of what happens in the world than we realize. They have been in league with the ruling families and are considered the financial arm of European royalty.

    I don’t even want to list the other ills foisted upon humanity by religion – like withholding family planning ability to vast swaths of Earth so that we have a population that is not sustainable… the list is too long. Start with year 34 AD and move forward through pogroms, Inquisitions and witch-burnings…. Pretty horrible track record for a RELIGION.

    Sorry – rant off… Just had to speak up and defend rational thought on here. It’s what we count on. People that want to ramble on about their personal relationship with ‘god’ need to go do that somewhere else. It’s all just hot air.


    The issue comes down to hearing the explosive “good news”. It was a message that so precious to all of us and it makes sense that it got so distorted and mixed with religion. I need to warn all of you that if you hear this true good news your world will be turned upside down by it. It is the very power of God (for those of you who have never experienced the power of God it will be a near death experience). Do not fear the economic, financial and industrial/environmental collapse – you can eddure this with a peace that passes understanding. Watch this:
    More at: https://chapeloffatherslove.com/


    Trolls or not – please take this stuff up somewhere else. Plenty of venues online for people who WANT to hear YOUR GOOD NEWS. Stop being so adolescent. This is NOT the new site Ash promised.. take this religiosity to that site.


    Oh, BTW –
    the statement:
    The issue comes down to hearing the explosive “good news”.

    is soooooooo far off-base. YOUR issue may come down to this silliness, but OUR’S does not. It comes down to collapsing planet and resources.. one of the things that these stupid ‘religions’ NEVER do anything about but make things worse… like we OWN all creation. What nonsense.


    This is but a small part of the collapse, like it or not. I’m an atheist, and would not sell my soul to any G-d as long as my life does not depend on doing so, but I’m also realistic in knowing that religion might be the only thing keeping communities together. I truly hope the devolution stops were I live before the “deranged chanting in the hills”, but this is the way it will be, I have no doubt about it. Want to blame something? Blame civilization, the spawn of agriculture, because religion, its method of control, is here to stay.


    I am sure it’s here to stay too. Plenty of people need hand-holding. My comment was directed to keeping this BS to a minimum on THIS site – which has been grounded in REASON.

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