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Thread: Discerning Divine Connection - Actual vs Perceptional

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    Member Niall_Leppu's Avatar
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    Discerning Divine Connection - Actual vs Perceptional

    Someone I've come to respect a lot stated the following as a response to my question regarding mortal-divine relationship:
    "Humans filter their understanding of the gods through their own experiences and understanding. HUMAN experiences and understandings. The gods are not human. So any connection is most likely your perception than an actual thing"

    Which raises my question:

    How does one discern an actual connection with the divine as opposed to a perceptional one?

    Such question may seem trivial to some. However, I know this forum has a lot of critical thinkers and experienced practitioners of various beliefs. So let's hear your thoughts, if not for a peace of mind, then for the sake of the question itself.

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    The Gaze of the Abyss B. de Corbin's Avatar
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    Re: Discerning Divine Connection - Actual vs Perceptional

    Humans are perception machines. There is no other way but perception. For humans (at least) perception is reality.
    Those who have suffered understand suffering and therefore extend their hand.

    I can't do everything, but I can do something.

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    Member NeoPlatonic's Avatar
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    Re: Discerning Divine Connection - Actual vs Perceptional

    I have asked a similar question here. It is not explicitly the same question but maybe you can gain some insight from the answers.

    To add to what has been said in this and other threads I would add that interpretation also plays a part in it. Even if you could experience the regrowth of a lost limb, if you do not consider that a divine event then nothing is going to change that opinion. There is some people out there who attribute simple meals to divine intervention and there are some who refuse to believe in any form of divinity.

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    sea witch thalassa's Avatar
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    Re: Discerning Divine Connection - Actual vs Perceptional

    There's another similar topic here as well...but in the short form, I'm gonna go with Corbin's answer.
    “You have never answered but you did not need to. If I stand at the ocean I can hear you with your thousand voices. Sometimes you shout, hilarious laughter that taunts all questions. Other nights you are silent as death, a mirror in which the stars show themselves. Then I think you want to tell me something, but you never do. Of course I know I have written letters to no-one. But what if I find a trident tomorrow?" ~~Letters to Poseidon, Cees Nooteboom

    “We still carry this primal relationship to the Earth within our consciousness, even if we have long forgotten it. It is a primal recognition of the wonder, beauty, and divine nature of the Earth. It is a felt reverence for all that exists. Once we bring this foundational quality into our consciousness, we will be able to respond to our present man-made crisis from a place of balance, in which our actions will be grounded in an attitude of respect for all of life. This is the nature of real sustainability.”
    ~~Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

    "We are the offspring of history, and must establish our own paths in this most diverse and interesting of conceivable universes--one indifferent to our suffering, and therefore offering us maximal freedom to thrive, or to fail, in our own chosen way."
    ~~Stephen Jay Gould, Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History

    "Humans are not rational creatures. Now, logic and rationality are very helpful tools, but there’s also a place for embracing our subjectivity and thinking symbolically. Sometimes what our so-called higher thinking can’t or won’t see, our older, more primitive intuition will." John Beckett

    Pagan Devotionals, because the wind and the rain is our Bible

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    Member Niall_Leppu's Avatar
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    Re: Discerning Divine Connection - Actual vs Perceptional

    Quote Originally Posted by thalassa View Post
    There's another similar topic here as well...but in the short form, I'm gonna go with Corbin's answer.
    Quote Originally Posted by Archifenix View Post
    I have asked a similar question here. It is not explicitly the same question but maybe you can gain some insight from the answers.
    Quote Originally Posted by B. de Corbin View Post
    Humans are perception machines. There is no other way but perception. For humans (at least) perception is reality.

    Thank you everyone, I've been reading each post slowly to understand as much as I can. I wish I could comprehend more than I do now without being too conclusive yet. At any rate, my logic is beginning to form this mindset.

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    Re: Discerning Divine Connection - Actual vs Perceptional

    Quote Originally Posted by Niall_Leppu View Post
    Someone I've come to respect a lot stated the following as a response to my question regarding mortal-divine relationship:
    "Humans filter their understanding of the gods through their own experiences and understanding. HUMAN experiences and understandings. The gods are not human. So any connection is most likely your perception than an actual thing"

    Which raises my question:

    How does one discern an actual connection with the divine as opposed to a perceptional one?

    Such question may seem trivial to some. However, I know this forum has a lot of critical thinkers and experienced practitioners of various beliefs. So let's hear your thoughts, if not for a peace of mind, then for the sake of the question itself.
    The question is not trivial at all. My answer may well be.
    I answer with this; "why does it matter?"
    Is it less real because it is a perception or more real because it is physical? Is there a difference other than we can show evidence of the physical? Would that mean that it was more real because you could provide evidence to back up your faith? It is enough to believe in spite of the absence of evidence. The only reason evidence is necessary is to boost your ego. It does nothing more.

    Let me make my point in a simple thought. For years you have been able to change red lights to green as you drive down the road. You have shown this ability to some of your closest friends. One day as you are driving your friend asks your, "Are you changing the light or do you just know when it will change?" There is no way to really prove which it is and the result is the same anyway. The only difference is that if you are changing the lights it boosts your ego where if you just know when the light will change it is just cognitive.
    The correct answer is, of course, what difference does it make?

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