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Not sure I agree with the “superb creature” part or maybe even that the drama is over if the narcissist within us in removed. My research indicates that we may have an extensive and productive journey ahead of us.

Maybe this journey will not on this earth but a journey of achieving higher and higher levels of, for a lack of an exact term, "divine wisdom" fulfillment and/or unfoldment.

Not sure self-realization is the end of the soul’s journey but it may be the end of much of our suffering. The human journey may very well be the early stages or level on this “long” (long being relative) journey of overcoming our ignorance.

a journey of achieving higher and higher levels

Isn't the search for spiritual accomplishment just another form of Michael's treadmill that he is ready to step off of. . .

On this grand journey, did our essential self ever really go anywhere? Or are we always the same, watching the wheels turn, watching the stories unfold, but in essence exactly the same witnessing presence we have always been?

By higher and higher levels I meant the continual unfoldment of our divine abilities which I suspect are exactly opposite of the treadmill accomplishments you mentioned. But I suspect that these treadmill experiences are needed or we would not partake of them. It may be part of the learning process for many if not all people if not in this life but past or future lives.

I am not sure we grow in spiritual accomplishment as you suggested but more like some kind of spiritual unfoldment. Although I have much respect for Advaita teachings I think there is more to the journey than they teach.

Not sure Matthew if we just wake up to that witnessing presence within us or if we actually grow/mature/develop in some type of conscious awareness and power with power being a poor description of this enhanced ability. My point was that I suspect we continue to awaken/expand after self-realization.

I think there is more to this journey than self-realization. It appears we go through a series/progression of experiences after human life such as from guide to teacher to higher levels of consciousness on “higher” planes of existence. And at each level we appear to lose more and more of our “identity” and reach higher vibration levels. It appears that we may grow or advance until we become as gods with a small g.

Some believe that these lesser gods are responsible for planets, galaxies, and maybe even the universe using the energy/vitality from this Godhead. Some call this the law of progress. Not sure I agree with the word law here.

To me it is a closed system with all souls advancing (spiral) but to our eyes it looks very much like an open system because we are within and part of this unfolding of spirit through the expansion of consciousness. The concept of free will as it is taught is an indicator of this belief in an open system.

William,

In order for the self or soul to do all this progressing, implies that there is an independent separate self in the first place.

I'm much more partial to seeing "Michael", "William" and "Matthew" as story or dream characters that "God" is imagining into existence.

It goes to my discussion of theodicy. Who is having all these experiences, anyway?

Ok Matthew granted the dream and the dreamer are one. But I have found that for most people this statement makes little if any sense to them and they take it as some kind of new age insult. It is for all but a few people an intellectual statement and not a realized statement.

It is like telling people if their identity is a dream their suffering is a dream and therefore not real. My experience has shown that if one talks about how suffering can teach us compassion, acceptance of others, and draws them closer to God: this resonates with them. They can conceive of an evolution of consciousness and a progression (ok perceived progression) of their soul (ok perceived soul) to a higher understanding of reality.

This is a story I retell to the best of my memory. A person had been studying Hinduism and kept telling his friend “life is a dream and the dreamer and the dream are one”. One day walking in the mountains the friend let his self-proclaimed Hindu guru friend walk a few yards ahead of him and he picked up a rock and hit his “guru friend” in the back of the leg. His friend yelled out in pain and asked “why did you do that to me it hurt”. The less than guru friend said, “it is all a dream and an illusion and I thought if anyone could understand that life is but a dream and we are but dreaming an experience of pain and suffering; then you of all people would understand and not experience this pain”.

As far as your article on theodicy it explains very well and concise if God is love why so much human suffering and to some degree that the origin of our ignorance is innocence.

Thanks for the dialog Matthew.

I don't know if this is true or not but Paris Hilton could have turned to religion?

William,

Thanks also to you.

I know that "for me" the realization that all is God only came after a great deal of (perceived) suffering, and because I couldn't take it anymore.

it had to happen paris hilton made it on michael's blog.

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