Covered Realms:

(all links - except to "Gaia" and "Do Future yourself" - refer to German texts)

About Spirituality

I'm interested in the transformation of society, culture and economy into a sustainable, humane and ecological world. This development is not only necessary but possible if many people unite in order to create our future themselves.

We have to tackle some problems. On the one hand, we need ploughed land, ground, homes, technical means and so on. Marx said something about those needs. On the other Hand we must transform our culture and our lifestyle. We have to change our ways of living and working. In transforming society we have to transform ourselves and while transforming ourselves we will change the society.

"The coincidence of the changing of circumstances and of human activity or self-changing
can be conceived and rationally understood only as revolutionary practice."

Spirituality is one possibility of changing ourselves. What is spirituality? There are many definitions. If spirituality demands praying - I'm not spiritual. I refuse all forms of spirituality which are "too lazy to think". But I won't refuse people who are spiritually. Its a tightrope walk.

These weeks an interesting coincidence takes place. We discuss the topic "Spirituality" in a group of friends in Jena and we discuss this topic in a mailing-discussion-group at the same time around the world.

I outline some opinions:

Steve and I fear that spirituality might work like a religion. It may "hold (only!) its doctrines and values as the true, right... ones" (Steve, 28.3., add. in ( ) A.S.). I feel that many "spiritual" people refuse non-spiritual people because they are not "really human". But it is often elitism to say that the other people are "not ready for it esoteric secret".

We have to define what spirituality is. We can understand each other in the definitions. I wrote my doubts in a mail and got interesting answers.

Here are some definitions of spirituality:

  • self-identifying with all that exists, making no distinction between "self" and "non-self" (Ken, 31.3.)
  • Thinking without making distinctions between us and the other (Tom, 28.3.)
  • a sense of oneness with all of Creation = no sense of inside or outside (Ken , 29.3.)
  • actual experience of wholeness (Tom, 28.3.)
  • The trick is to stop imagining and just be (Tom, 1.4.)
  • there can be an individual self-consciousness, but it is framed in the context of an all-inclusive One Consciousness (Ken, 31.3.)
  • awareness of physical needs becomes secondary because the identification is not with the separate person but with life energy generally (Ken, 29.3.)
  • anyone who aquires or deeply pursues this knowledge (know oneself and the human condition) is spiritual, whether they use that word or not (Ken, 31.3.)
  • Spirituality = open-mindedness (Ken, 31.3.)

"Everyone is spiritual, and non-spiritual." (Ken 31.3.)

I like this. I don't pray. But I often think that hearing good music or snuggle up to the child can be a better meditation than forced praying without feeling... (I can't write about this, because this is "nondual"(see: T.Murphy about "Wholeness and Enlightenment"). )

When I was 14, I had "a sense of oneness with" the universe. But it was a flight from the real world. When I studied physics (relativistic quantum theory) I defended my feelings against bare formulas. I want to integrate Feeling (I want not say that I mean mystical experience although maybe some of them are such feelings) and Knowing - not loose the knowledge.
It was a hard work for my to develop myself (all my ancestors were farm hands - I studied physics and philosophy...) In my early years I was "lost in cosmos" - was not by myself, wasn't a "self"...(and therefore, Tom, this "sense of oneness" had to be developed. Today seeing Hale-Bopp I'm feeling much more than in my earlier astronomy-times. )

I won't lose my self. But my "self" is nothing without introducing it in a community - the world. While this my "self" becomes another of course. I needn't to prove my knowledge to my friends to give a lecture in the discussions about philosophy with my friends in Jena . I've learned to be silent (it was hard to me!) and to be a part of the group easily. Some groups develop around me without lectures - only due to human being...

None of my ancestors was able to study or learn. My grandmas worked and worked and worked... Their lives weren't "transcended", but dull. I'm very happy to have another possibilities. Therefore I insist on them. Yes I know - I've learned (!?) to limit the meaning of mere thinking. I allow and promote feelings... on the basis of an understanding different from that of my grandmas. In this sense In this sense I'm unlearning some school-thinking. Hegel distinguished between "Verstand" (understanding) and "Vernunft" (reason). "Vernunft" unites the differences made by "Verstand". Hegel only knew rational brain-"Vernunft". We accept and know more.

Ken Wilber has a good presentation: at first there is a "fusion" (mush without differences). But than we need the stage of differences to achieve the stage of "Integration". Integration is not the same with fusion! In this way I can accept wholeness.
Compare "whole": "nature is consisting of discrete, concrete bodies and things, and not as a diffuse homogeneous continuum"

With Hegel I see differences in the units and these differences are necessary for being and evolution. If there were no differences, there would be no interaction (like we in our discussions). Uniform things didn`t need other things, they would drive without interactions in the mush. This is not the whole/wholeness I mean.


"Spinoza was by descent a Jew; and it is upon the whole the Oriental way of seeing things, according to which the nature of the finite world seems frail and transient, that has found ist intellectual expression in his system. This Oriental view of the unity of substance certainly gives the basis for all real further development. Still it is not the final idea. It is marked by the absence of the principle of the Western world, the principle of individuality, which first appeared under a philosophic shape, contempoaneously with Spinoza, in the Monadology of Leibnitz." (Hegel, Encyclop. § 151 addition, Engl. cit. in:

We have to unite - analogous to Ken Wilber - the opposites: Wholeness and Individuality, not to "attempt to eradicate one of the opposites" (Excerpt from Wilber´s "No boundaries" by C. Doppler).

A mail from me to Steve K. and the Cc-group (21.4.1997)


... The text of AM de Lange about Smuts "holism AND creativeness of nature" likes me
very good. Its the completion to the Wholeness-Discussion. I was afraid that
we lose evolution/development.

Another note:
There was the discussion, from what things arise. From nothing? - or from an infinite energy (quantum-vacuum). Hm... About quantum-vacuum I had read 1979 from soviet-authors. Its nothing news!

Maybe said: Its "Materie" (German word which not means stuff, but all Not-in-consiousness-being). All "Materie"forms emerge from other "Materie"forms and so on. (consciousness is a Materie-form too!) From Nothing comes Nothing.

Hegel uses other categories. All "somethings" comes from Nothing and goes into Nothing. We need permanence - and that permanence is Essence. This is a philosophical opinion. Its better than mixing physics and ideology. If the permanence would be the quantum-vacuum, this physical thing would be the Essence of universe! It is mechanical materialism!

About Essence you can read very well: (and ../essence1.htm).

I am still working about the categories (in German: and asmoeg2.htm).

But I have doubts because many spiritualists (esoteric) remove the physical (!) quantum-vacuum-energy to "consciousness-field". And than the human essence is identically with quantum-being and nothing other.

I dont refuse universal connections. But I think, they are more complex than a "simple" physical field of vacuum-quants. (I am a physicist. I have calculated the arising of quants in the early universe. I know the topic...) All my work is to find connections (therefore I love hypertexts, also in my WWW-project). I am fascinated to relationships, connections and so on. I try to connect serveral opinions by searching their common essence, I try to connect living and thinking and so on...

"Dialectic" is searching connections. Philosophy is thinking about connections. Life is connecting. Spiritual life and practise is another form of it, I accept.

(In our discussion in Jena there was One who said: "We cant change the society, but I want to be happy. Therefore I and my friends are meditating and forgot the real world in our spiritual consciousness." I canīt accept this opinion FOR ME (for him it may be well). )

And I dont think that spirituality is the "highest" opinion. (We had in socialist countries a "highest" opinion).

Excuse me, I cant explain more carefully in English.

Ahoi Annette


Thanks to Martin G. for some corrections...!

Please refer as well to (in English):

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- This page is a part of "Annettes Philosophenstübchen" 1997/98 - -