Catholic vs. Other - 2017-01-08 - Ivan Freud

Author Recorded Sunday January 8th, 2017

There are 41 episodes in the Versus:Other series.

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Catholic vs. Other - 2017-09-10 - Judah

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Catholic vs. Other - 2017-09-02 - William

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Catholic vs. Other - 2016-10-21 - Ben

Ivan is an old friend from the neighbourhood. His energy is infectious and I knew he'd have a lot to say. He didn't disappoint. I only wish he could have stayed to chat a little longer. Next time.


Catholic vs. Other - 2017-01-08 - Ivan Freud

Author Recorded September 24th, 2016

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hi my name is Ivan you're listening to Catholic versus other so I usually like to start just by having you introduce yourself who you are what you believe and why you believe it okay my name is Ivan Freud I teach religious studies at the local college I also teach yoga and I'd like to play music do some cartooning here and there and his family man and that's about it your childhood were you raised with the religion I was raised in the Catholic faith okay can you talk a little bit about how you viewed God and religion when you were very very young like when you first started to think for yourself I was very much into the tradition I enjoyed it i enjoyed the reflection and going to church and a few little things that went awry they're being asked to lip sync and the choir rather than actually sing because I was too loud that only Catholics would go to heaven knowing people from other traditions that I thought were wonderful people was kind of bugged me a little bit also there was a funny story of gone to church with my parents my dad my mom and me my dad puts his money in the basket my mom they'd given me a bit of change I put my money in the basket they get up to get the host and I follow them so my dad goes my mum goes and I come up and the priest says well sorry I can't give you the whole you know you haven't been confirmed and I told him I paid my money like everybody else you're going to give me my food and my dad quickly grabbed me for my future can't talk a little bit about your relationship with God did you believe in god to be worshipped God to deep right about at night as a child yeah I pretty to go tonight for certainly for a time I have always been I think in conversation with what some people would call God yeah on board have you ever been comfortable to label yourself as an atheist yeah I labeled myself as an atheist for a while then chose agnostic over it atheist atheist and the sense of belief in science and i'm also not into blind faith religion easily be used to control people and that's an aspect of religion that I don't necessarily favor and so this idea that critical thought the scientific method and Maya religiosity need to be in harmony I also feel there's a need to accept recognize appreciate some mystery you know the to not have the hubris to think that I know at all you know this is it this or that even that humanity or humans can figure it out I think maybe we can feel it sense it be it but not necessarily intellectualize it or understand it rationally as such I hope you realize that the Catholic Church embraces faith and reason and they're compatible there's no conflict possible actually between now in your spiritual journey what are the unchanging components of your past love love is a foundational yeah bliss love value are there any of the attributes of God that the Catholics attribute to God that you reject or do you accept all of the perfections that the Catholic Church attributes to god I'm not sure everything that the Catholic Church attributes to God but I was recently as a Peace Studies conference in Notre Dame University mistake and they had us do this exercise where there were four words they looked at if I remember correctly was justice truth mercy and care remember the fourth goodness unit a huge beauty and beauty may be but love and compassion and empathy were not in there and so when we broke off into smaller groups I'm kind of harming it started throwing in these terms because I find like justice and truth especially to be relative terms especially politically okay no apartheid was a legal system it was a truth it was a just according to the legal system of the prime and place the whole Nazi regime was legal it was just in terms of German justice of the time so truth can be relatives what about love what about compassion what about empathy truth and justice imply that somebody's rightfully is wrong whereas compassion love empathy kind of our holistic it's like that that Markham the poem the human issues it you drew a circle that shut me out rebel heretic a thing to flout but love and I had the wit to win we drew a circle that took you in so I'm kind of in on that kind of boat of like yeah to see the value in all traditions and how they're kind of a benefit to the individual and to the community in our court system which judges a better judge the judge who in his love and compassion gives a just verdict or the judge who in his love and compassion strays from justice and truth well again justice and truth are relative dualistic right they separate there's this thing going on in the school's you want to be radicalize which means they want to curb any sympathy or especially action that would lead young people from here to join a jatis movement so the program is be radical ization but to be radicalize you have to first find the radicals and then d radicalize them why are we talking about inclusivity you know about mutual respect well loving kindness its rejection that's going to cause radicalization so if you're looking to find the root of the problem solve the problem and love is more useful in my eyes than the radicalization which involves separation segregation now that you're a parent your parents yeah your one shot yep when it comes time to instruct your child about truth and justice of course you're going to do it in a loving way but can you not anticipate that there will be times where you need to be firm and where you need to just left and right with your child are there absolute truths there may well be but I try to see things relatively in context so when it comes to guarding my child yeah you know don't hurt people be kind will I teach him to defend himself its attack probably you know it's a tricky Road and that's necessarily we walk might here to Catholicism to Jesus Christ has cost me friendships because those friends that you are doing me harm by adhering to the Catholicism because of those truths are not true their lives and they are harmful to my group in society so I'm labeled as not being compassionate of being loving to my fellow man just because I misunderstood in the Catholic faith is misunderstood and Jesus Christ is misunderstood and what I'm getting from your point of view is that you're more on their side than you are on my side you're more interested in do not harm without a clear understanding of what harm is so if I say that I follow the teachings of the Catholic Church and someone says those teachings harm me in my group you're not going to be able to help me I would defend your right to follow your face as i know you you're someone who's contributed much to the well-being of others and to the world around you and no wide variety of ways so to reject you because you follow a particular faith to me as ridiculous that says more about your friend hang-ups than it does about you and you follow in your faith now if you're going to tell me it was the Inquisition cool you know know the Inquisition wasn't cool oh man you support what the Inquisition did I don't know what maybe really the good side of the Inquisition I think this is a new perspective now speaking of Jesus Christ how do you characterize a matter how it for training I see jesus is love you know forgive them for they know not what they do that's the pinnacle of compassion I have a lot of respect for Jesus like as I know him through scripture right i mean you liking each have a different view of Jesus right each of us being different you know there's that whole Talladega Nights thing and I'm so that's only pregnant you baby Jesus why are you putting a baby Jesus I'm like oh I like Jesus with the wings you know I like Jesus Jesus you know all the different Jesus's and they can't go off yeah I actually pray for the single-cell choose the single cell yeah just that consumption yeah I mean I prayed all the cheese's that's very older all time you know you know and I know I have a lot of respect for this character this archetype of Jesus of a loving person who is basically a Jew trying to reform judaism trying to get the Jews to live up to their own ideals it sounds like you have no doubt that he the historical fee from what I've seen from archaeological evidence etc you know I was obviously there was a person named Jesus who walked the earth and you know what's good yeah it was good why you don't believe in Heroes in physically I learned an interesting lesson way back in and a meditation retreat done this meditation treat the past and I was taught by goenka those bustle meditation having done a 10-day sip invite you back to help out behind the scenes cook and clean and such if you're behind the scenes you can talk from behind the scenes and my roommate and we end up having a conversation he says at one point the pasta meditation is the only way I'm kind of a pluralist having a diverse cultural background myself I am multi in my every cell of my being so how can i pick one thing so I'm like well I think there are many ways then I told the story but it comes to town never been in that town resident to a group of people hey new to your town or you guys do around here all main thing we do here end of the day sunset we climb this local mountain and we watched some said oh wow how do you get there I'll north face Oh wonderful meet the second group of people ain't new to your town around here sunset and as they all how'd you get up there East pace okay meet the third group of people a new to town you guys do around here top of the mountain sunset beautiful oh how do you get up there west face so who's at the top of the mountain at the end of the day everybody everybody makes it to talking about independence day so I'm telling him stories like there's a Mike Lowell he's like no the positive Julia I'm like what about soup is no deposit is the only way like I'm like you know what man your view makes me sad because yours is the view that leads to Worf and I walk away then I reflected on this after and I'm like I held on to my view of tour ality in the same way that he held on to his view of singularity and so conflict without resolution so I figure what is the way then to not have conflict to have harmony maybe the pasta is the only way what do I know I think there are many ways but maybe the pastas only maybe the plasma is the only way for him had a friend he married an evangelist woman and I was in religious studies at the time I popped in to see him he was an area i was waiting for him some philosophizing about Buddha and Jesus how the similarities in buda and christ she loses it the Bible says that said that and I was like whoa taking it back again upon reflecting understood that her face is her life buoy this is what keeps her afloat in life this gives her tremendous satisfaction and joy so what what why am i coming and comparing Christ to Buddha I can do that with other people I need to understand her face and she's a wonderful woman wonderful mom wonderful friend a great person I'm going to respect her face and enjoy you know the gift of being with someone who has a face because they radiate to give a lot they're very kind generous people it's nice to be around people of faith so what just give a little bit of background about your journey in terms of career what is it that you do again I teach religious studies so what led you to that what led me to that I did Sciences initially and then we're not to do business marketing pharmaceutical marketing consumer marketing was reflecting on that I didn't care much about selling prozac or Big Macs and yet that's what my life force was going towards fortunately a friend offering me a job in Japan taught English in Japan for three years traveled extensively from Japan over those three years had been an athlete as a young guy and then ended up blowing out my knees I was looking for a practice of physical practice that would keep me strong and fit flexible as I aged and then turn to yoga to practice from a book for a couple of years which led to a meditation retreat with a friend and Thailand in Japan vice-principal pub muse and meditation and then through Asia just you know we find yourself in sacred sites a lot and contemplating different images or different philosophies and you need a lot of corn seekers people trying to stand life from various religious traditions and so enter it's a lot of conversations and so that was three years in Japan two years of traveling between Japan and back to Canada through Asia North Asia Southeast Asia South Asia the Middle East Europe and back to Canada decided to be an actor of an actor for five years playing music wanted to learn how to write songs learn how to write songs teaching yoga and you know always with a spiritual bed what is the difference between east and west philosophically and religiously and why do you lean more towards east we have they seem to lean towards the east more yeah this is something nice called beginner's mind right so when you approach a tradition that's foreign to yours you're more likely to see the great stuff in it and not see the crap okay example at one point i'm standing in thailand just wearing a sarong waiting for some selling falafel with french fries on the beach in Thailand there's a thai guy that I kind of know standing beside me looks over I mean I'm wearing a medallion of this thai buddhist monk he's known for squatting and he's got a big cigar like a roll his own cigarette rolled and i smoked at the time so i said this would be my patron saint would be the smoking buddhists right so I'm wearing this medallion of the smoking Buddhist and this tie guy also no top on looks over at me and goes what's this what's this like an flicks my talisman and I'm kind of taken aback and I look over at him and he's wearing a cross and I'm like what this what this he didn't even realize right haha so we had a laugh and just kind of an add on to that story is i did a meditation retreat on that island in thailand and then was hanging out on the beach and i got to befriend the owner of the bungalows worst a nice guy pine flat and one day penfed comes home he's screaming too much buddha too much buddha and I'm like how can you have too much Buddha man can have too much Buddha and so I asked him what I mean too much Buddha and apparently the we're politically trying to get some land on the island and I was like this is exactly what we knock to go through the for back home people are inherently political because we're humans and we have to deal with one another's so that's something and then in the Religious Studies is one of our profits as you know the cross there's the horizontal line which is social which is political and then there's the vertical line which is our connection to lock your ideals yeah so on this line we're all people and each religion is going to have its politic and each religion is going to have its Wonder and mystic aspects or the practices right in evolution and I believe that any religion that exists today must have something to offer if it didn't have any offer wouldn't be around and I teach religion from a scientific perspective so Social Sciences bearing on religion history philosophy psychology sociology anthropology don't throw the baby out with the bathwater so to understand political motivations to understand mystic or spiritual motivations for me that's the fun is to see okay why did this happen and Edward de Bono you know whether you'd like it 10 a lateral thinking between yes and no is poll possible so she doesn't limit himself to yes or no he transcended duality by having this third category called PO it's being a comfortable with ambiguity we were talking earlier about the unknown and mystery right so did Constantine convert to Catholicism out of faith it's like you truly had a vision and he was emotionally moved to convert to Catholicism or was it politically motivated here is a religion that I can use to my hands to better control this Empire it's interesting to consider that it may have been faith motivated it may have been political may have been a combination may have been some other element we don't know and that's okay that's interesting and we leave it at that you know I think this is to our detriment that we are not comfortable with ambiguity I think it limits creativity and should be rigid so the East I think offers a more flexibility has a foreigner to the addition having been born within the tradition all I'm aggregate will come with that's right that's right and that's why my wife is reflecting all the Chinese people that are into a Christianity here you know they've got church as they're filled you know with agents starting going into Christianity they don't have that the baggage and they see Jesus in love and you know they see what Westerners potentially see in yoga or in Buddhism you remember Jesus went to his hometown and could do very few miracles because she was familiar to them yeah and so there wasn't as much faith in his hometown almost every prophet made it somewhere other than here home but I left home Jews left home with Hamid left home what was this left home everybody left home right now since you know a lot about religion can you just make a quick and dirty summary of Hinduism and Buddhism one of the main differences that you need to start with the indus valley civilization which is runs at that same time is ancient egypt and samaria one of the early earliest civilizations known to humanity the indo-aryan migration we could situate in this valley at about 3,500 BCE I situated about same time as Egypt of Samaria 3,500 BCE first civilizations early civilizations on earth 1500 BCE got pastoralist migrations invasions coming in over these agricultural kingdom so in this valley had its own religion so they may well have had meditative yogic practices in Indus Valley the area's arrived with the Vedic religion which is based on sacrifice animal sacrifice heavily ritualized over time the original Indus Valley religion comes up and merges with the Vedic religion so we start to see the internalization of ritual and notions of non-violence as a reaction to the violence of the animal sacrifice and of the pastoralist life versus the agricultural life that's and get Buddhism so Buddhism Jainism these religions and jeevika and other religions arise in about 600 BCE as a reaction to the violence brought upon the the arrival in 1500 and you can see this across the known world at about 1,500 the Hickson's come into Egypt Minoans and my veins and Greece the Babylonians take over Sumeria the Aryans move into the one group of Aryan come in to purge another group go into India the Shang go in to the Shia which were mythical but there was still some sort form of civilization so some reason the pastoralists come out of the steps and into the agricultural kingdoms which creates another layer in society in terms of caste systems and such so 600 years or so later there's a reaction which is buddhism and jainism so this is more the individual working out their own Dharma right Hinduism is more community-oriented Buddhism is more individually orient there's no blood sacrifice over there no blitz it's nonviolent ahem says a central tenet the sacrifices are internalized imagined and you'll see that with the the pastoralists coming in this changes the agricultural cultures and there's a lot of evidence to say that religion was in our hunting gathering days maybe the early days of Agriculture matriarchal Venus figurines life like women give birth right so if you're thinking about God is the creator women give birth so women God must be woman so this is you see a lot of seven and imagery and you know early religion but between 600 BCE and 600 cee you've got the five world religions of today so today's five world religions were founded in a 1200 year period when you look at things through life it's pretty short time between 600 BCE 600 600 BCE you've got modern Judaism as we know it going from temple to tota the Jews are liberated from Babylon and 600 with the written Torah so this is rabbinic Judaism as we know it's 600 BCE you've got to buddhism 600 BCE Jainism 600 BC now the world religion Confucianism 600 BCE allow to 600 BCE jesus said about zero and Mohammed that's 600 so these are all men so you've got religion based on the word of one man so today's religions are patriarchal and you also have this kind of the hero's journey comes into play so we're looking at the I like to try and see if religion evolves how religion has changed over time notice too how humanity has managed its environment and and to see where we are going so it is the future not only in terms of religion but in terms of human history where are we going where have we been chart the trajectory and see what options are available and to try and direct the river towards what I think is the most favorable option one of my guests talked a lot about religion as story and a stories involving it's getting better from our Catholic perspective that's a dangerous notion because it just ignores the supernatural is the supernatural important to you and what part would i play in this development of competing religious ideas well if you're going with story the notion of the supernatural is essential to any story if we look at the hero's journey as outlined by Joseph Campbell you start with call to adventure refusal of the call supernatural aid boom there is no story without supernaturally the hero cannot do it on his own and you look at Trek you can look at Star Wars you can look at any story but the mode that has been most common is supernatural aid comes and helps the hero the hero is challenged the hero is afraid refuses the challenge until supernatural aid arrives and gives him the courage or the tools there were two cross the first threshold and enter into the belly of the beast go deep within you know engage his own psyche am I ready for this and come out and yes and then go through the road of trials in the crucifixion the meeting with the goddess apathy OSIS or getting the final boon and then the return because once the road is traveled and the lessons learned then the responsibilities to return and share what's been learned now this may not have been true of hunting gathering stories or agricultural stories but it is true of modern religions patriarchal masculine hero religions so why is it the same in different places through time because it is our journey we start off as kids you know we need somebody to feed us and wipe our ass and then when we go through we have this childhood period where we have our parents to take care of it at some point we leave home make or break you have to find a way to put food on your table care for yourself go for another person care for family you have to make sacrifices in order to be able to do that meeting with the goddess apathy OSIS your father gives you a thumbs up because he's passed and torch and you've done it so you get his thumbs up and then you teach your kids and this is all of our stories whether you're in Japan or South Africa or Siberia Latin America wherever you may be that's a story we don't know what's going on we have to figure something out how to sustain ourselves once we figured it out you know we can support ourselves in our family there we go to teach the next generation and that's the hero's journey so do you see story and poetry and some of the loser forms of imagery as more powerful or as just necessary because you lack the intellect to go directly to the information one of the things resources whether things I appreciate the Hinduism is this notion of yoga's we're different people have different traits some people are PC some people are Mac so back to yoga would be for an emotionally oriented person karma yoga for a physical action oriented person jnana yoga for more intellectually oriented person some people are intellectually oriented and they like to read a lot and think a lot and philosophize some people are more I like to sing and dance and do poetry and feel you know should people do what comes naturally or should they leave the comfort zone and go on that dangerous quest I guess it would be their choice there was one of my roommates at one point he was pissed off when it was like ah you know learn a lot about a little or a little about a lot I don't know a lot about a lot thank you ms oh yeah man you know you probably won't get there but why not be open to learning as much why limit yourself no I'm only going to learn this because I want to know only this really well no sorry I don't this only er you know oh no I can't spend too much time on any one thing is or a lot of stuff whatever comes your way whatever interest to confess your ability in that time I'm going to change the subject a little bit now and talk about this physical universe that we live in this material body that we have you've seen different religions and you know you know that some religions can deny the reality of this physical world and you know that some religions can deny the supernatural and only focus on this world where do you lie on that spectrum that's what a boat shows things that the east is a fully mystical but lacked in material and the West is God fully material and lacks in the mystical or the spiritual in Buddhism a split it into two Monday in reality and ultimate reality which can be seen as conditioned reality and unconditioned reality many possible reasons why but I like to try and send duality this is kind of my one of my things is that I strengthen it may be an Eastern thing and maybe just having lived a lot of different separation you know your English your friends you're this you're that you know I take a holistic perspective I appreciate the need for different perspectives so you can't drive a car and be you know I'm you know I'm one with the universe you need to follow the rule and stop at red lights but you do need is knowledgeable will I meditate as a regular practice yeah and not only living the world in year ago yeah the value of the physical world yeah there's a state of being beyond within through transcendence his name and form that we can inhabit I joke sometimes you know I think therefore I am say I think therefore I am NOT the idea being that the conditioned reality is a thoughtful reality i'm thinking i'm operating I'm cognizant I'm working things out therefore I and not if a little I is yeah this recognition I is not and when one is thinking so if you get to a place of no mind or more positives than the place of being when I teach little kids notation so this is a digestion you know we're always injecting and testing vara vara we need time to Oh digest what about ecstasy the concept of ecstasy because that's a Christian concept also you say i think the drug ecstasy and i think that with ecstasy you know like with any drug that there's always a price to be paid expectations means standing outside of yourself there is no outside and even when it comes to Eastern tradition to talk about detachment you can't say detachment when you think about Buddhist notions of Shunyata of emptiness life is empty of self-existence labada life resistance is interdependently colorizing so it is there's this unity and Einstein or Unified Field we can think molecular Lee or we can think in terms of dense energy and light energy but outside oneself you are still yourself you will never be separated from yourself yeah I dig the notion of emptiness Buddhist emptiness there is nothing else there's nowhere else there's no one else or and they put they use this notion of non selfhood for if you're angry at someone well there's no one to be angry at or if you feel bad or about yourself well there's no one to feel bad about and it's kind of a Zen colon and in the same way as a Zen koan these things short circuit the rational mind and bring us to a place of being beyond name and form and I guess this is ecstasy from a Catholic perspective is this experiences being there's no name no form no thought no emotions no likes or dislikes being and in Eastern traditions they translate that into a bliss it's a blissful State at my prom with bliss and Xu it's not a problem I would just like to underline it caution right that for any high there's an accompanying lowell but that said life at its base value is not zero it's +1 it's not neutral the fact that life exists is a positive thing so mr. ecstasy but not that wow you know oh you know because that has it rost it's peaceful bliss it contentedness a subtle joy you know that comes with this state of being a sustainable thrill yeah to the listener that has been on a completely different trip what would you say to them to just sort of summarize where you're coming from I think everyone's on their own journey and they will encounter the people the book the traditions that they encounter if i were to offer advice based on my personal experience is take it somewhat lightly enjoy the striving respect other people's strivings you know understand that they're they're doing their best kind of like family you're doing their best and go maybe a little bit easier on you and a little bit easier on them knowing that we're all trying our best and we're on our path I believe in the genuine goodness's of people that people don't want to hurt other people they didn't want other people to be well and they want themselves to be well so be kind towards yourself and others on your path whatever that path may be and it's likely going to be a winding road enjoy the twists and turns who knows what comes next you know a revelant ministry dig it enjoy can one of you if you can get rockin questions a piano girl I'll

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