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Philosophy of Ashla
On the edge of your awareness is a silhouette, an intermittent echo of a spiritual and philosophical stirring taking place with in you. Perhaps it has always been there or maybe it is only recently that you have begun notice it, but one thing is certain, you can no longer avoid or ignore it. You have heard the call and you have felt the pull of an unknown force that has been trying to wake you from a long and deep spiritual slumber. You can no longer turn away from this force that is moving you in the direction of personal development and philosophical betterment.
It does not matter when your journey began or where your path has taken you for today, your journey has brought you to the Order of Ashla Knights. Nothing happens without reason or purpose; your search and our presence, the union of both is not luck or chance, it is providence.
The ideology of Ashla, the way of Light is a path for personal betterment, philosophical understanding and spiritual development. Three primary components formulate the philosophy of Ashla: philosophy, practice and path. The first of the three is where we will begin, but before we do, let us begin our journey in a responsible manner, we will review and come to understand the meaning of the word “philosophy”.
What is philosophy?
The word “Philosophy” is defined by Your Dictionary (www.yourdictionary.com), as:
1. Archaic love of, or the search for, wisdom or knowledge.
2. Theory or logical analysis of the principles underlying conduct, thought, knowledge, and the nature of the universe: included in philosophy are ethics, aesthetics, logic, epistemology, metaphysics, etc.
3. The general principles or laws of a field of knowledge, activity, etc.; the philosophy of economics:
(a) A particular system of principles for the conduct of life.
(b) A treatise covering such a system.
4. A study of human morals, character, and behavior.
5. Mental balance or composure thought of as resulting from the study of philosophy.
“Philo” - meaning "love", and “sophia” – meaning wisdom, the Greek word “philosophy” means, “the love of wisdom.” Philosophy is the love of searching for the true nature of a “thing” in order to understand its existence. When you understand the nature of things, you understand your own nature. Once you understand yourself; you understand the universe and when you understand the universe...the Life Force Energy that flows in and around all things is realized.
What is not philosophy?
Philosophy is not science. While philosophy and science share some similarities as far as logical thinking and critical examination, they are not the same. Science does employ some aspects of philosophy, however critical examination primarily relies on empirical data such as facts; formulas and proofs to help provide an explanation and understanding into the nature things. Critical examination from a philosophical perspective often draws facts from various areas of science and mathematics, theology, metaphysics and existentialism, but mainly it is the contemplation, discussion and debate, which provides explanation and understanding into the nature of things.
Philosophy is not a religion. Religion is an ideology of dependence. In other words, to be devout, one believes in a deity. This dependence is also the case for the doctrine of religion, in order for the tenets to have substance; belief in a deity is required. Philosophy does not require this dependence; one can have a moral and ethical system of values without the need for a deity or religious doctrine.
Individual and collective philosophy
When the time comes to seek a deeper knowledge and spiritual understanding of things, the self and the universe, it is a moment to treasure. It means one has chosen to transcend the diminutive (in many cases) and accepted points of view to embrace a larger more balanced perspective. Now, you would think, that by adopting a more rational perspective on life it would make things easier but, sadly, this is not always the case.
The philosophical, spiritual, or empirical approaches we might use to understand a “thing” no matter how antiquated or contemporary the aspect might be, typically becomes the foundation for one’s path in life. It is an unpleasant fact that our point of view will always differ from the point of view of another, but this is the way of the world and it is productive as it is negative. In many cases, two similar philosophies or points of view will still be subject to disagreement for there are always variables and semantics to consider, explore, and eventually reconcile. History shows us that fear; passion and attachment to a way of thinking, understanding and interpretation have been the cause of conflict between individuals, communities and nations.
Why is it a personal offense when another disagrees with one’s religious, spiritual or philosophical position? Perhaps it is our accepted religious and philosophical truths that provide us with perception, orientation, identity and purpose in life. Having them challenged or rejected by others is like challenging a way of life or rejecting the essence or nature of another. When our personal philosophy is in question, we immediately review our value system; unfortunately, true to human nature it is only a “cursory” review. In other words, we skim the surface and do not probe deep enough to find the cause of our misunderstanding.
The passion in our beliefs and the attachment to what we practice often times points to errors with others and not with us, which begins the circle of conflict. Philosophical and, or spiritual conflict is not always external, it is also internal. Many think wisdom is to know the "what", "how" and "when" about all things is to be wise. Understanding the essence or nature, the "why" of what little you know is wisdom. Many believe that there is no limit or end to what one should know and understand and if you the reader believe this to be true then I say this to you, "be careful when seeking knowledge." The quest for knowledge is seductive and it can be extremely dangerous for you and others if you fail to understand what it is you are taking in. Not all subjects are positive or productive, many can confuse you, cause conflict within and take you off your path. You can become philosophically lost and spiritually twisted, an embodiment of what you have worked hard to avoid and defend others against.
For better or worse, truth and ignorance provide comfort; sometimes shaking someone from their comfort zone is a good thing. In many cases, accepting a new perspective and embarking on a new journey while taking comfort in the understanding that all roads of our life journey eventually lead to the same destination can be a refreshing notion. The union of two forces, or two perspectives is harmony, true enlightenment no matter how opposite and extreme they maybe. Coming to know the opposite aspect or perspective contrary to what one believes is balance and it is the very essence of philosophy. On the other hand, confusion and a lack of understanding can and will license one to debate, argue or even reject the veracity put before them, further immersing them in shadows of fear and anger. An Ashla Knight does not seek out nor provoke conflict, however always be prepared and know when to say when. You can only help those who want to help themselves.
Considering what you have read thus far and ask yourself how long it has been that you have known of the philosophical and spiritual corrosion within. Like a junk draw or cluttered hallway closet we toss miscellaneous items into; the clutter of learned and developed patterns of thought, habits and beliefs litter our philosophical understanding and spiritual perception. It is these antiquated, subjective and even false perceptions and understandings that confuse us...the dynamics from this confusion creates conflict and further distracts us from our intended path. Our understanding and interpretations of things have become so complicated, contradictory, and confusing that it feels as if it is completely impossible to throw out the old and embrace the new.
“Why bother? I am a good person, I obey the law, I believe in a deity, acknowledge the doctrine, fellowship and/or go to church. I fear for the disposition of my soul and try to live a religiously devout or considerate life, so I am not going to bother with it, I have nothing to worry about.” This is insidious thinking for not everything judicial is virtuous and not everything religious is moral and just. This is a domain of ignorance, a place where fear and confusion twist and confuse our perceptions keeping us in Darkness.
The philosophy of Ashla
The philosophy of Ashla is a speck of Light that shines bright in the darkest of conditions and situations. Ashla will help you embrace a love of knowing and understanding; it will encourage the process of logical thinking and critical examination while keeping your mind, heart and spirit open to all possibilities. Incorporating the daily practices of Ashla will provide applicable technique through the fog of philosophical and spiritual confusion, thus bringing you back to the very fundamental understanding of right and wrong, good and evil.
As you become one with the philosophy and practice of Ashla, the shadows of fear, confusion, attachment and conflict will no longer be your burden for peace and serenity, patience and calm, compassion and kindness, harmony and balance will become the path you walk.
If you are truly ready, let us begin…
Derek M. Thompson
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