Jordan Bates • • 3 min read
On Transcending Rationality and Embracing the Mystery — With Jordan Bates and Mike Slavin (HEx Podcast #23)
“In the last couple years there’s seemed to be a… decided shift [in my mind] in the direction of dethroning rationality as… the primary tool that I use to parse reality, and putting it in its proper place… And through deep listening and deep internal experiences and even mystical experiences, arriving at a sense of a felt at-home-ness in reality and in the present moment, in which you’re trusting and surrendering to the flow of reality…”
— Jordan Bates, HEx Podcast #23
Today I’m excited to share one of the best conversations I’ve ever had.
In sunny Costa Rica just before our recent Apotheosis retreat, I sat down with my brilliant colleague Mike Slavin to talk about transcending rationality.
Especially in recent centuries, Western culture has placed rationality on a lofty pedestal, increasingly glorifying it as the most powerful tool for parsing / understanding reality.
This misguided over-valuing of rationality has resulted in untold misery.
Rationality is a wonderful servant but a dreadful master. Employing it as one’s primary tool for parsing reality tends to result in nihilism, disenchantment, existential aridity, and a paranoid sense of being a stranger in a hostile, alien universe.
“And that’s where mystical experiences or psychedelic experiences can temporarily melt away those linguistic filters so that you come into raw, unadulterated contact with the all-enfolding Ocean of Reality, and you see that you are a wave on that Ocean, just as the tree is a wave on that Ocean. And when you have that direct experience there can be a direct apprehension of this Sacred Sigh of Relief: ‘Oh, wow, I don’t have to think this rationally, but I just know this in my heart: Everything is Okay.’ Everything is deeply, truly Okay, and it’s where it needs to be, and I’m where I need to be, and I see now that the neurotic rabbit holes and spirals of my rational mind have functioned as a nihilism-producing trap that was preventing and blocking me from having this direct apprehension of the gloriousness of Reality because I was attempting to use the rational mind for a function for which it is not well-suited.”
— Jordan Bates, HEx Podcast #23
Humanity is presently being summoned to transcend obsolete and unsustainable modes of being, and one aspect of this level-up is dethroning rationality, becoming trans-rational, and rediscovering deeper, wiser, intuitive levels of human intelligence that re-enchant / reconnect self and Nature.
I hope so.
Mr. Slavin and I undertook a mission to spelunk the rabbit hole of trans-rationality, attempting to illuminate the failure modes of rationality, its appropriate function, and to map out a blueprint for transcending rationality to attain a more expansive sense of at-home-ness in Nature.
This was a tall order, but I must say that I think we did a pretty damn good job…
You can decide for yourself. Without further ado, here is my extra-ordinary conversation with the luminous legend, Mike Slavin.
LISTEN TO THE HEx PODCAST (#23)
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WHAT WE DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE:
- What may truly be deserving of the word “God”
- Dethroning rationality as one’s primary tool for parsing reality
- Realizing rationality is a wonderful servant and dreadful master
- Embracing, trusting, and flowing with the Mysterious River of Being
- How to feel at home in the universe
- The false security of being over-attached to one’s models of reality
- Why the map can never be the Territory
- Why rationality can never quench one’s existential thirst
- Why dogmatically clinging to castles of concepts has plagued mankind for aeons
- How Western culture has misguidedly glorified rationality as the ultimate tool for parsing reality
- The immense power and value of mystical experiences
- How mystical / psychedelic experiences melt away linguistic filters, allowing one to come into raw, unadulterated contact with the all-enfolding Ocean of Reality
- The Sacred Sigh of Relief: Directly perceiving that everything is deeply, completely Okay in all moments and everything is where it needs to be
- Much more…
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