I don't get Buddhism

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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Wed Mar 11, 2020 7:43 am

So, anyway, Buddhism...
I thought this article had a few interesting points...
https://www.theatlantic.com/internation ... ce/548120/

I liked the question about why Buddhism needs to improve on nature.

I think it also extends one of the points Felix made from a practitioner of one the strands of Buddhism.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby felix dakat » Wed Mar 11, 2020 5:38 pm

Karpel Tunnel wrote:So, anyway, Buddhism...
I thought this article had a few interesting points...
https://www.theatlantic.com/internation ... ce/548120/

I liked the question about why Buddhism needs to improve on nature.

I think it also extends one of the points Felix made from a practitioner of one the strands of Buddhism.


It is also well known that constant rumination is one of the main symptoms of depression. What we need is to gain freedom from the mental chain reactions that rumination endlessly perpetuates. One should learn to let thoughts arise and be freed to go as soon as they arise, instead of letting them invade one’s mind. In the freshness of the present moment, the past is gone, the future is not yet born, and if one remains in pure mindfulness and freedom, potentially disturbing thoughts arise and go without leaving a trace.

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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby felix dakat » Wed Mar 11, 2020 5:38 pm

Karpel Tunnel wrote:So, anyway, Buddhism...
I thought this article had a few interesting points...
https://www.theatlantic.com/internation ... ce/548120/

I liked the question about why Buddhism needs to improve on nature.

I think it also extends one of the points Felix made from a practitioner of one the strands of Buddhism.


It is also well known that constant rumination is one of the main symptoms of depression. What we need is to gain freedom from the mental chain reactions that rumination endlessly perpetuates. One should learn to let thoughts arise and be freed to go as soon as they arise, instead of letting them invade one’s mind. In the freshness of the present moment, the past is gone, the future is not yet born, and if one remains in pure mindfulness and freedom, potentially disturbing thoughts arise and go without leaving a trace.


My experience confirms this. Mindful meditation can free one from depressing obsession. I think iambiguous is stuck in such an obsessive pattern. It wouldn't surprise me if many here on ILP suffer from unhappy obsessive thinking and could benefit from the practice of mindfulness.

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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Wed Mar 11, 2020 9:52 pm

felix dakat wrote:
Karpel Tunnel wrote:So, anyway, Buddhism...
I thought this article had a few interesting points...
https://www.theatlantic.com/internation ... ce/548120/

I liked the question about why Buddhism needs to improve on nature.

I think it also extends one of the points Felix made from a practitioner of one the strands of Buddhism.


It is also well known that constant rumination is one of the main symptoms of depression. What we need is to gain freedom from the mental chain reactions that rumination endlessly perpetuates. One should learn to let thoughts arise and be freed to go as soon as they arise, instead of letting them invade one’s mind. In the freshness of the present moment, the past is gone, the future is not yet born, and if one remains in pure mindfulness and freedom, potentially disturbing thoughts arise and go without leaving a trace.
I have a different approach which is more expressive, getting underneath the ruminations to the emotions that are being avoided by the ruminations and/or driving them. If I express these emotions - in sound as much as possible with few or no words except for the occasional outburst (sometimes a realization of something with a lot of emotional charge) - this also ends the rumination. More to my taste as a process, though I also meditate, but even there not quite in the mindfulness way. And I agree that rumination can be a real problem. I noticed that part of the interview also and thought it applied as you mention below. It can certainly be part of feeling fractured and fragmented.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby iambiguous » Thu Mar 12, 2020 1:51 am

phyllo wrote: Oh. It hasn't been demonstrated to someone's satisfaction, therefore it does not exist.


Huh?

If someone is not satisfied that Gautama Buddha aka Siddhattha Gotama aka Siddhārtha Gautama did really exist, then he did not exist?

If someone is not satisfied that Buddhists believe in reincarnation and Nirvana, then Buddhists do not believe in these things?

Or: if someone is not satisfied that Buddhists have demonstrated the actual existence of reincarnation and Nirvana...?

That is the distinction that I make. In the either/or world [relating to Buddhism or Christianity or any other religious faith], there are any number of facts that can be established. Established such that those not satisfied with them don't make them go away.

phyllo wrote: In spite of references to a gap, the posts are peppered with certainty.


Again, choose a context and a set of behaviors in which religious or moral or political values are likely to come into conflict. We can discuss our own moral philosophies and you can note all of these certainties of mine that seem to suggest something to you about the gap between things I either deem certain or uncertain.

phyllo wrote: The threads dealing with the "psychology of objectivism" are all about what objectivists think.

The threads dealing with religion are all about what religious people think.


Think about what?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby phyllo » Thu Mar 12, 2020 2:24 am

I gave you some feedback about your posts and posting style.

Do whatever you want with it.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Thu Mar 12, 2020 6:51 am

felix dakat wrote:My experience confirms this. Mindful meditation can free one from depressing obsession.
So, do you 'go to mindfullness' also when you are under stress, or is in primarily a regular practice with sessions, like an hour in the morning. And then you notice this practice seeps into your daily being mindful. Or some other possibility?
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby felix dakat » Thu Mar 12, 2020 3:34 pm

Karpel Tunnel wrote:
felix dakat wrote:My experience confirms this. Mindful meditation can free one from depressing obsession.
So, do you 'go to mindfullness' also when you are under stress, or is in primarily a regular practice with sessions, like an hour in the morning. And then you notice this practice seeps into your daily being mindful. Or some other possibility?


I practice mindfulness daily. And a lose it daily. Stressors can be cues to return to it.

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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby iambiguous » Thu Mar 12, 2020 8:08 pm

Karpel Tunnel wrote:
iambiguous wrote:Now, the thing that all of us share in common here is this: that when it comes to immortality and salvation all we have is our capacity to imagine them as real.

And that if you can think yourself into believing in a God, the God, my God, they become all the more real in your head. And that this need be as far as you go in demonstrating that they are real.


Phyllo: How is this not an expression of certainty about "all we have"?


Isn't it all we have? Or are you aware of someone who has been able to demonstrate that in fact immortality and salvation are real things and not just something some believe are real in their heads?
This is called shifting the onus. You have made the claim that it is only in their heads, period. But now he suddenly, when he points out your claim, must demonstrate the opposite,w hen in fact you bear the onus for you own claims.


Not entirely sure what your point is.

But, as always, I am noting the clear distinction between anything that anyone believes to be true in their head and their capacity to demonstrate that all rational people are obligated to believe it in turn.

The difference between believing in your head that Donald Trump is president of the United States and believing in your head that he is doing a fantastic job in leading the nation against the coronavirus outbreak.

What both liberals and conservatives believe in their head about him being the president would seem to be within our capacity to demonstrate objectively. But what of the job he is doing in rallying the country around beating back the virus?

Unless, again, this is some "technical" point you are making relating to epistemology or a "category error".
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby iambiguous » Thu Mar 12, 2020 8:11 pm

phyllo wrote:I gave you some feedback about your posts and posting style.

Do whatever you want with it.


Don't I always? :wink:
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby phyllo » Thu Mar 12, 2020 8:55 pm

The difference between believing in your head that Donald Trump is president of the United States and believing in your head that he is doing a fantastic job in leading the nation against the coronavirus outbreak.
So now you shift from "immortality and salvation", which are potentially real things, to a judgement of a job being done by Trump.

Apparently you don't see any difference there.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby iambiguous » Thu Mar 12, 2020 9:59 pm

phyllo wrote:
The difference between believing in your head that Donald Trump is president of the United States and believing in your head that he is doing a fantastic job in leading the nation against the coronavirus outbreak.
So now you shift from "immortality and salvation", which are potentially real things, to a judgement of a job being done by Trump.

Apparently you don't see any difference there.


We are clearly in two different discussions here.

From my frame of mind, it can either be "immortality and salvation" or "Trump doing a fantastic job against the coronavirus". What counts is the extent to which what you believe about them "in your head" is able to be demonstrated by you as that which all rational men and women are obligated to believe in turn. And here it doesn't make any difference if you are a Buddhist, a Christian, a Scientologists or an atheist.

Note to others:

I'll be the first to admit the problem here may well be my own inability to understand the point that he is making.

If you believe that to be the case please attempt to reconfigure it into something that might be clearer to me.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby phyllo » Thu Mar 12, 2020 10:12 pm

Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

IOW, absence of demonstration says nothing about the absence of a thing.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby iambiguous » Thu Mar 12, 2020 10:25 pm

phyllo wrote:Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

IOW, absence of demonstration says nothing about the absence of a thing.


Come on, what else is there but our capacity to at least make an attempt to demonstrate that immortality and salvation exist; and that Trump is doing a bang up job in the Oval Office?

Or are you really willing to go about the business of living your life interacting with others such that the only thing that counts is what someone believes about these things [and everything else] in their head?

Again, note to others:

What really, really important point is he making here that I keep missing? Or, perhaps, what really, really important point am I making here that he keeps missing?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby phyllo » Thu Mar 12, 2020 10:44 pm

I guess that I'm not as binary, black and white, as you are.


Reducing stuff to either :

... demonstrated such that all rational people have an obligation to think and act one way

or

... it's just in their heads.


That doesn't adequately account for people's thoughts and actions. It's just too simplistic for me.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Thu Mar 12, 2020 10:48 pm

iambiguous wrote:What really, really important point is he making here that I keep missing? Or, perhaps, what really, really important point am I making here that he keeps missing?
I am not sure if this is his point, but this is mine. Your thinking in binary. [i] If it is rational to believe something then you can demonstrate it to others. So, if you cannot demonstrate it you are wrong or irrational

]But that isn't true. There are situations where it is rational to believe things that cannot be demonstrated to others.

So, perhaps you have no reason to believe certain things, because they have not been demonstrated to you, nevertheless others may still have good grounds to believe it.

An indigenous person sees giant 'canoes' and pale skinned men get off them hunt and get water then get back on the ships and disappear. He tells his village this story and some have trouble believing him. He cannot demonstrate it, but it is true and rational of him to believe it himself. In the 60s it was not possible to demonstrate that animals were conscious experiencing creatures and it was taboo to assume they were. Yet many people, like animals trainers, pet owners and more knew that animals were conscious experiencing being. Later, science accepted this - though in truth no one has demonstrated this, it's just that the old bias slipped away.

So, you make a statement dismissing salvation etc.
Phyllo points this out.
You then demand he demonstrate it is the case. (not noticing that you bear the onus for somehow demonstrating salvation does not exist.) If he asserts it exists then both of you have the onus for demonstrating
each
of
your assertions
of
knowledge.

But you had an onus, one you NEVER take responsibility for while demanding it of others.

In your mind, you have for years assumed that if someone cannot demonstrate something to you it must be 'just in their minds'.

That general rule is clearly and demonstrably false.

Sometimes we can have excellent grounds for believing things we cannot demonstrate to others. Ask rape victims.

But you are such a fucking asshole

that you cannot listen, so after years you make the same mistakes, even after they have been pointed out to you.

You make your snide little plays to the gallery and the gallery has answered such questions before. But because you do not want to give up your petty little game

you will forget again

that you get the onus for your assertions
regardless of any onus others get.

And your simpleton moronic binary thinking and inablity to learn, because you are utterly unable to learn, because you are not interested in learning

means that this same shit will appear again soon and years later you will be asking the gallery in your coquettish faux sincerity to help you.

Moron or asshole, you take your pick.

It's hard to tell from the outside which it is. I suppose you might be insane. But whatever it is we might as well be dealing with a bot. And one that does not pass the Turing test.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Thu Mar 12, 2020 10:55 pm

Oh, look. I tried to post my post and ILP informed me another post had been posted. Phyllo...and lo, the word binary comes up.

Perhaps my post was compatible with Phyllo's thinking. Though he was way too polite about it.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby felix dakat » Thu Mar 12, 2020 11:02 pm

...binary, black or white, all or nothing, zero/sum, absolutist...

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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby iambiguous » Fri Mar 13, 2020 12:06 am

phyllo wrote:I guess that I'm not as binary, black and white, as you are.


Reducing stuff to either :

... demonstrated such that all rational people have an obligation to think and act one way

or

... it's just in their heads.


That doesn't adequately account for people's thoughts and actions. It's just too simplistic for me.


Binary, either/or thinking in regard to what?

John believes in immortality and salvation. He flat out points out that he does. Now, Jane can claim that she believes that John does not believe in immortality and salvation.

So, in fact, does John believe in immortality and salvation or doesn't he? Is Jane right or wrong about what she believes?

Same with John believing that Trump is now president of the United States. Either he is or he is not. What could possibly be more black and white than that?

But when it comes to demonstrating that what you believe about immortality and salvation is in fact true...where is the either/or evidence for that? Or in regard to Trump's job performance in the White House, why aren't we able to pin down the optimal or the only rational reaction?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Fri Mar 13, 2020 7:12 am

phyllo wrote:I guess that I'm not as binary, black and white, as you are.


Reducing stuff to either :

... demonstrated such that all rational people have an obligation to think and act one way

or

... it's just in their heads.


That doesn't adequately account for people's thoughts and actions. It's just too simplistic for me.
It is demonstrably false. That rule simply does not work. And the rule that if one can't convince him also demonstrably false, though it cannot be demonstrated to him. He never considers in an active way that his biases mean he cannot understand certain things. He says it occassionally, like a Tourette's tick, but it is doubt he might be correct has no practical application in any real world dialogue. He never considers this possibility and finds he actually made a mistake. That has never happened. Abstractly it always could happen, but he tempermentally can never admit this. So, what value does his 'maybe I am wrong' have. Down to earth, that is. Up in the clouds he 'admits' he is potentially fallible. But here on earth in real situations, he never makes a mistake. Never notices one, despite a variety of intelligent people finding them with regularity.

And if the process of demonstrating is via words on a screen, it is yet again another degree weaker. But will he continue to act like this makes sense? Of course. What if he is a bot? That'd be both hilarious and embarassing.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby felix dakat » Fri Mar 13, 2020 1:25 pm

Mindfulness meditative practices are consistent with cognitive behavioral therapy techniques that are among the most effective psychotherapeutic methods for treating anxiety and depression.

So while iambiguous holds out for absolute proof of Buddhist metaphysics, he may be depriving himself of a readily available source of happiness and well being.

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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Fri Mar 13, 2020 3:58 pm

felix dakat wrote:Mindfulness meditative practices are consistent with cognitive behavioral therapy techniques that are among the most effective psychotherapeutic methods for treating anxiety and depression.

So while iambiguous holds out for absolute proof of Buddhist metaphysics, he may be depriving himself of a readily available source of happiness and well being.
And also from taking a step that might lead to him being better able to later, after longer practice, being able to have a fruitful discussion of the those ultimate concepts like reincarnation and karma and nirvana. Much knowledge cannot be understood if one lacks certain experiences. To demand knowledge up front without experience is in many fields simply childish. Of course, if is not interested then it is likely not a path that suits him, yet at least. But it's as if he would be able to understand it all now and that everything should be demonstrable to someone who is both uninterested and has no experience.
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby iambiguous » Fri Mar 13, 2020 7:23 pm

Karpel Tunnel wrote:
An indigenous person sees giant 'canoes' and pale skinned men get off them hunt and get water then get back on the ships and disappear. He tells his village this story and some have trouble believing him. He cannot demonstrate it, but it is true and rational of him to believe it himself.


Still, the crucial point historically is that the Europeans had in fact arrived; and while that may well have been difficult to demonstrate at the very beginning, how easily might it have been in the years that followed?

Given for example all the facts contained in this assessment: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_ ... e_Americas

Bottom line [mine]: In the either/or world facts are there. But, in a No God world, mere mortals are either able to ascertain them or they are not.

Same with Buddhists and karma and enlightenment here and now and reincarnation and Nirvana there and then. What Buddhist beliefs can in fact be demonstrated about them in regard to their reactions to the coronavirus here and now as that impacts on how they imagine these behaviors will translate into their fate there and then.

Or in regard to any other behaviors in which conflicting goods and conflicting assessments of the afterlife manifest themselves in any particular context.

Exploring that part is either important to folks here or it is not. If it is not, then they are advised to avoid my posts here altogether.

Karpel Tunnel wrote:In your mind, you have for years assumed that if someone cannot demonstrate something to you it must be 'just in their minds'.


How utterly preposterous! Like if someone cannot actually demonstrate to me things that clearly can be demonstrated -- re physics, chemistry, biology, mathematics, meteorology, geology, demography, the rules of logic, etc. -- it must be true only in their minds.

Like at the recent Harvey Weinstein trial [in regard to rape and sexual assault] there were not any number of facts brought forth able to establish that which reasonable men and women on the jury were obligated to believe.

But: sans God there are still any number of nihilists and narcissists and sociopaths out there able to rationalize his behaviors merely by shifting the focus of human morality to that which satisfies their own perceived wants and needs.

Then this part...

Karpel Tunnel wrote:But you are such a fucking asshole

that you cannot listen, so after years you make the same mistakes, even after they have been pointed out to you.

You make your snide little plays to the gallery and the gallery has answered such questions before. But because you do not want to give up your petty little game

you will forget again

that you get the onus for your assertions
regardless of any onus others get.

And your simpleton moronic binary thinking and inablity to learn, because you are utterly unable to learn, because you are not interested in learning

means that this same shit will appear again soon and years later you will be asking the gallery in your coquettish faux sincerity to help you.

Moron or asshole, you take your pick.

It's hard to tell from the outside which it is. I suppose you might be insane. But whatever it is we might as well be dealing with a bot. And one that does not pass the Turing test.


I will leave it to others to arrive at their own conclusions regarding the extent to which this reveals more about him than about me.

I have my own conjectures of course. It's just that in the past I would get this sort of reaction from the objectivists. And I always presumed it revolved around the extent to which my own arguments were increasingly chipping away at theirs. They would become ever more perturbed as they began to imagine what the consequences might be for their own "real me" in sync with the "right thing to do" if my point of view actually did make more sense in a No God world.

But KT seems to share many of the same assumptions that I do about morality in a No God world.

What then could be the source of his own fulminations above? Again, I have my own suspicions. And they revolve around the distance between my reaction and his reaction to being a "fractured and fragmented" personality.

But here he has to be willing to bring his philosophical assumptions down out of the clouds and examine them with me given a particular context. Given my own philosophical assumptions derived from the arguments made in my signature threads.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby iambiguous » Fri Mar 13, 2020 8:15 pm

felix dakat wrote:...binary, black or white, all or nothing, zero/sum, absolutist...


Pick a context Buddhists might all be familiar with and let's discuss these things. 8)
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: I don't get Buddhism

Postby Karpel Tunnel » Fri Mar 13, 2020 8:41 pm

felix dakat wrote:Mindfulness meditative practices are consistent with cognitive behavioral therapy techniques that are among the most effective psychotherapeutic methods for treating anxiety and depression.

So while iambiguous holds out for absolute proof of Buddhist metaphysics, he may be depriving himself of a readily available source of happiness and well being.
Buddhism in the West if often something one comes to post-childhood. One converts to it, or adds it, or moves from not practicing anything to following Buddhist practice. It would be interesting to do a study of what personality types are drawn to which religions and paths and even psychotherapeutic modalities and spiritualities as a adults. And then to see if certain personalities gravitate to an approach for specific reasons and what they might be. Do the people drawn to Wicca have certain traits in common? Do those drawn to more traditional Abrahamic religions - perhaps those who had little or no church (or mosque or temple) - in their childhoods? What is the different in the personalities of those drawn to Hinduism in the West as opposed to those drawn to Buddhism? Those drawn to psychodynamic psychological approaches as opposed to those drawn to CBT? and so on. There are likely better fits, in terms of approach.
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