Monday, October 29, 2007

The Rational Rapture

There are very few metaphysical beliefs that I share with fundamentalist Christians. One unlikely point on which we agree is one of their most regressive beliefs: the Rapture. The Christian perception of the Rapture, in accordance with the Book of Revelation, is that at the so-called End of Times all true believers will abruptly disappear from the Earth to live in heaven through the Time of Tribulation preceding the Second Coming of Christ.

Needless to say, my Rapture dynamic has little common with the Christian scheme. To me, the Rapture represents a large number of people achieving supreme enlightenment (i.e., true understanding of the nature of Reality) in a relatively short period of time.

The basis of this event is the rapid circulation of what I characterize as the Enlightenment Meme (a meme is a shared concept that undergoes a form of mental propagation and natural selection in a manner analogous to what genes experience in a purely biotic sense). This particular meme is the idea that triggers what many Buddhists call satori, a deep and lasting enlightenment.

To date the transmission of the Enlightenment Meme has been an arduous and haphazard process generally taking years to pass from adept to aspirant in the Dharmic traditions. This is because very few people have a grasp of the background concepts that would facilitate the rapid absorption of the Enlightenment Meme through rational comprehension. As such, it is necessary for the aspirant to develop the requisite intuition to internalize this special meme. Because intuition is a very personal phenomenon, transmission in this manner has been a very slow process.

Two significant changes in our global culture are bringing humanity to the stage at which the replication of the Enlightenment Meme will begin to accelerate. First, we are isolating the various ideas required for us to develop a rational understanding of Reality. As the conceptual framework (memeplex) emerging from this process becomes common knowledge, it will simplify the absorption of the Enlightenment Meme (thus increasing its replication potential). Secondly, communications mechanisms such as the internet and wireless data technologies are facilitating the rapid migration of ideas around the globe.

It is my heartfelt belief that once our rational understanding of Reality reaches a certain threshold of completeness, a more easily replicated version of the Enlightenment Meme will emerge and be transmitted around the world through our global communications systems. The result of this event will be a wave of true enlightenment of Rapturous proportions.

Once an easily absorbed, widely accessible Enlightenment Meme manifests, the only protection against it will be closed-minded dogmatism. Ironically, this means that in my scheme the vast majority of the fundamentalist Christians who are eagerly anticipating being “Raptured Away” are in for a nasty surprise.

3 comments:

Irv said...

Have you ever Googled "Famous Rapture Watchers" or "Pretrib Rapture Diehards"? They'll grab you! Irv

Secret Rapture said...

My inaugural address at the Great White Throne Judgment of the Dead, after I have raptured out billions! The Secret Rapture soon, by my hand!
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John Stoner said...

Two responses:

The rapture is at hand. Ceck out http://bigmind.org ... fascinating combination of Zen philosophy with Jungian voice-dialog technique. Zero to satori in half an hour. Seriously.

That said, there is also the insight of 'Before Enlightenment, chopping wood and carrying water, after Enlightenment, chopping wood and carrying water.' Enlightenment is not a state of mind, it is the freedom to engage in all states, whether they're compatible with your ego as currently constituted or not. Freedom from ego, not elimination of ego.

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