The Bottom Line

Written by Jed McKenna

Continued from page 1

::: The Line Is Drawn

The cogito isrepparttar line between fantasy and reality. On one side ofrepparttar 122162 cogito is a universe of beliefs and ideas and theories. To crossrepparttar 122163 line is to leave all that behind. No theory, concept, belief, opinion or debate can have any possible basis in reality oncerepparttar 122164 ramifications ofrepparttar 122165 cogito have fully saturatedrepparttar 122166 mind. No dialogue can take place across that line because nothing that makes sense on either side makes sense onrepparttar 122167 other.

We all think we know whatrepparttar 122168 cogito means; this is an invitation to challenge that assumption. If professors of philosophy truly understood it, they wouldn't be professors of philosophy. Alfred North Whitehead said that all philosophy is a footnote to Plato, but all philosophy, Plato included, is rendered obsolete and irrelevant by Descartes. Nothing butrepparttar 122169 subjective I Am is true, so what'srepparttar 122170 point of prattling on?

The cogito isn't a mere thought or an idea, it is an ego-eating virus that, properly incubated and nurtured, will eventually devour all illusion. Once we knowrepparttar 122171 cogito, we can begin systematically unknowing everything we thought we knew, and unravelingrepparttar 122172 self we aren't.

::: Life is but a Dream

There is no such thing as objective reality. Two cannot be proven. Nothing can be shown to exist. Time and space, love and hate, good and evil, cause and effect, are all just ideas. Anyone who says they know anything is really saying they don't knowrepparttar 122173 only thing. The greatest religious and philosophical thoughts and ideas inrepparttar 122174 history of man contain no more truth thanrepparttar 122175 bleating of sheep. The greatest books are no more authoritative thanrepparttar 122176 greatest luncheon meats.

No one knows anything.

::: Disprove it for Yourself

Anyone wishing to deny these statements aboutrepparttar 122177 meaning ofrepparttar 122178 cogito need merely prove that something, anything, is true. By all means, give it a try, dash your head upon it, but it can't be done. Cogito ergo sum, however, isn'trepparttar 122179 endpoint of inquiry, it'srepparttar 122180 starting point; it's a tool that helps us see, without intermediaries, exactly what is true and what isn't.

How great is that?

-Jed McKenna

::: About the Author

"Jed McKenna is an American original." -Lama Surya Das

Jed McKenna is the author of "Spiritual Enlightenment: The Damnedest Thing" and "Spiritually Incorrect Enlightenment", published by Wisefool Press. Coming in 2005: "Spirituality X" and "Jed McKenna's Notebook". Visit to learn more.

Enlightening Cinema

Written by Jed McKenna

Continued from page 1

::: How to Get Ahead In Advertising

"Everything I do now makes perfect sense."

A thwarted bid for freedom. A failed attempt to overthrow Maya. Enjoyrepparttar insanity ofrepparttar 122161 epiphany.

::: Joe vsrepparttar 122162 Volcano

"Nobody knows anything, Joe. We'll take this leap, and we'll see. We'll jump, and we'll see. That's life, right?"

Death and Rebirth. Unlike American Beauty, this is all about moving forward, "away fromrepparttar 122163 things of man."

::: Man Facing Southeast (Hombre Mirando Al Sudeste)

Watch especially forrepparttar 122164 visual poem of a man crumbling a human brain into a sink while looking forrepparttar 122165 soul.

::: The Matrix

"Like everyone else, you were born into bondage, born inside a prison that you cannot smell, taste, or touch. A prison for your mind."

Plato's Cave forrepparttar 122166 people. As allegorically lucid as Joe vs Vocano, Pleasantville and Star Wars.

::: Monty Python's Life of Brian

"No, no! It is a sign that, like Him, we must think not ofrepparttar 122167 things ofrepparttar 122168 body, but ofrepparttar 122169 face and head!"

Sacred Cow-tipping at its best.

"Meaning of Life" also belongs on this list.

::: Nineteen Eighty-Four

"If you want a vision ofrepparttar 122170 future, Winston, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—forever."

This movie is unique inrepparttar 122171 sense that it's as good asrepparttar 122172 book, which is an extremely intimate portrait ofrepparttar 122173 captor/captive, Maya/man relationship. Compare this to Moby-Dick or One Flew Overrepparttar 122174 Cuckoo's Nest which are superb books but useless movies.

::: One Flew Overrepparttar 122175 Cuckoo's Nest

As with Moby-Dick, Hollywood castratedrepparttar 122176 book. They stripped it of its archetypal dimensions and reduced it to a meaningless pissing match between McMurphy and Nurse Ratched. Great entertainment, but for meaningful insight, readrepparttar 122177 book.

::: Pleasantville

"There are some places whererepparttar 122178 road doesn't go in a circle. There are some places where it keeps on going."

A cheerful tale of heresy in which no one is burned atrepparttar 122179 stake andrepparttar 122180 new paradigm is, eventually, embraced by all.

::: The Razor's Edge

"The dead look so terribly dead."

The razor's edge is what makes it interesting; seeing Larry shakily balanced onrepparttar 122181 fine line between what he was and what he's becoming. He is walkingrepparttar 122182 edge between two lives. The Bill Murray version is a bit unfocused... stick with Tyrone Power or readrepparttar 122183 book.

Maugham supposedly used Ramana Maharshi asrepparttar 122184 model forrepparttar 122185 novel's holy man.

::: Star Wars

"The force will be with you, always."

The first one, where Luke makesrepparttar 122186 transition from flesh to spirit.

The Hero's Journey.

::: The Thin Red Line

"Maybe all men got one big soul everybody's a part of, all faces arerepparttar 122187 same man."

A sublime inquiry intorepparttar 122188 spiritual nature of man. More a sad/sweet song than a narrative film.

::: The Thirteenth Floor

"So what're you saying? You're saying that there's another world on top of this one?"

Layer after layer. Turtles on top of turtles.

::: Vanilla Sky/Abre Los Ojos

"Open your eyes."

If you like Vanilla Sky, check outrepparttar 122189 original,repparttar 122190 Spanish film Abre Los Ojos (Open Your Eyes). These two films may berepparttar 122191 best ofrepparttar 122192 bunch for our purposes;repparttar 122193 closest to an enlightenment allegory.

Of course,repparttar 122194 interesting thing about enlightenment is getting there, not being there, and that's what these films are about; awakening from a false reality, opening your eyes. They're not so much about what's real as what's not.

It'srepparttar 122195 story ofrepparttar 122196 journey one takes to get torepparttar 122197 place where anything, even jumping off a tall building, would be better than continuing to live a lie, even a beautiful, blissful lie.

Noterepparttar 122198 presence ofrepparttar 122199 true guru, explaining in clear terms why leaping offrepparttar 122200 building isrepparttar 122201 best thing to do, and waiting patiently for it to be done.

::: Waking Life

"They say that dreams are only real as long as they last. Couldn't you sayrepparttar 122202 same thing about life?"

Wide-ranging philosophical inquiry. Provocative. Amusing. Potentially disruptive.

::: Wings of Desire

"Whenrepparttar 122203 child was a child, it wasrepparttar 122204 time of these questions: Why am I me, and why not you? Why am I here, and why not there? When did time begin and where does space end?"

A lovely, intelligent, thought-provoking film. Canrepparttar 122205 awakened being return torepparttar 122206 dreamstate? Would he want to?

::: Others

Some other films that reward thoughtful viewing are The Wizard of Oz, About Schmidt, What Dreams May Come, Total Recall, Allrepparttar 122207 Mornings Ofrepparttar 122208 World (Tous les Matins du Monde), and, of course, many more.

-Jed McKenna

::: About the Author

"Jed McKenna is an American original." -Lama Surya Das

Jed McKenna is the author of "Spiritual Enlightenment: The Damnedest Thing" and "Spiritually Incorrect Enlightenment", published by Wisefool Press. Coming in 2005: "Spirituality X" and "Jed McKenna's Notebook". Visit to learn more.

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