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Monday, May 23, 2011

The Death Issue To Peter Gersten - Choosing The Time And Location

Hello TAL readers - thanks for being here today. Today's post is about an on-going saga that some of you may be aware of due to my having Peter Gersten's `works' in the TAL sidebar under `The Short List'. Gersten is one of the few I have featured due to the sheer volume of `heavy stuff' type links his website has. (The Heavy Stuff is my esoteric/phenomenology blog - ) The man is a thinker and has been at the forefront also of pressuring the government via the FOIA for UFO documents.

And, on his website - as he has had for quite a while, and, that I was aware of when posting the link to his website - he has what amounts to a declaration of suicide that corresponds to some of the 2012 crappola out there. And, I assume that some folks are just becoming aware of this learned man saying that he will do an action that will result in his death on a certain date at a certain time at a certain place.

Now, he says, that it is his way of ending his `program' - as he believes - evidently very strongly, - that we all live in a computer simulation. And, he views this as his way to act upon his beliefs. (I also believe that he expects that his actions could PROVE it and therefore alter mankind's very perceptions of the world.)

Anyway, with that as the backdrop - several bloggers who I regularly read - have voiced up their concerns with Peter's stated goal in 2012 (which I am going to force you to read more to find it all out) in the past few days as you can see from the links below:
First, Bragalia on 5/17 - where he says that Peter is just one of the UFO folks who has cascaded into madness - - lots of comments.
Next, Bruce Duensing on 5/18 - on which I wrote Bruce a long comment - others chimed in too.
Then, on 5/20 Paul Kimball checked in with nearly an entirely different take on Gersten - backed up with videos he took of Peter in 2007 - lots of comments here too - which was rebutted by Bruce Duensing in his blog a day or so later - (and which could even be referring to my comment too).

So, why do I bring this to my TAL reader base? First, I felt a responsibility to users of my sidebar - the very sites I recommend. Next, I wanted my first gut response to be available to those who wish to read it at BD's blog. But, I also wanted to bring all of this OUT OF THE 2012 connection and into a MUCH larger context, perhaps.

You see, I am of the belief that one OWNS their space - their body - and when at the age of adulthood - should have complete control over it and how it is treated. I HATE the concept of doctors keeping people in pain alive if they do not wish it. I HATE the concept of people after strokes being FORCED to live with their conditions (as I saw my father in law for over a year be motionless and unable to communicate). I HATE the idea that the STATE laws will govern what things I may use within my body to affect my consciousness.

People die for all sorts of reasons - including the lies by politicians. To me, THOSE ARE THE LIVES THAT ARE WASTED. Young lives, often given for no REAL reason at all. And, I won't mention drones bombing innocents out of the sky with apologies for `collateral damage'. THOSE ARE DEATH CRIMES.

But, for a fully functional 70 year old man to have reasons to do an action - even if based on near nonsense verbage - that he feels will be bordering or enhancing to/on his enlightenment or even humanities (from his point of view) - IMO - has to be looked at in this bigger picture as to WHO OWNS OUR BODY?

Ready to be blasted by those who feel otherwise if you wish - I will read and post any comments here too.
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  1. When I wrote to Peter, I told him I respected his right to do what he pleased.However, I told him I can disagree with his reasoning at the same time. To separate his reasoning from this planned act is ludicrous. To defend what you call crap which is the foundation of his act and then mix this generically with entirely different circumstances, is to throw nuance out the window. To sweep the issue of mental illness under the rug and to endorse by inference, this act by proclaiming lunacy to be the foundation of jumping off a cliff is not only irresponsible, but tragic.Every minute of everyday, we are murdered and do murder for madness. Now according to you we need no third party to do so without questioning it, we simply murder our Self for a half baked bit of propaganda. Lovely.

  2. here is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide. Judging whether life is or is not worth living amounts to answering the fundamental question of philosophy. All the rest -- whether or not the world has three dimensions, whether the mind has nine or twelve categories -- comes afterward. These are games; one must first answer.

    ALBERT CAMUS, An Absurd Reasoning

    If suicide be supposed a crime, 'tis only cowardice can impel us to it. If it be no crime, both prudence and courage should engage us to rid ourselves at once of existence, when it becomes a burden.

    DAVID HUME, Essays on Suicide and the Immortality of the Soul

    The thought of suicide is a great consolation: by means of it one gets successfully through many a bad night.

    FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE, Beyond Good and Evil

    If I commit suicide, it will not be to destroy myself but to put myself back together again. Suicide will be for me only one means of violently reconquering myself, of brutally invading my being, of anticipating the unpredictable approaches of God. By suicide, I reintroduce my design in nature, I shall for the first time give things the shape of my will.

    ANTONIN ARTAUD, "On Suicide"

    When your principles seem to be demanding suicide, clearly it’s time to check your premises.

    NATHANIEL BRANDEN, The Free Radical, Oct. 2004

    In most cases, suicide is a solitary event and yet it has often far-reaching repercussions for many others. It is rather like throwing a stone into a pond; the ripples spread and spread.


    Suicide creates a monstrous emotional upsurge of shame and guilt. Everyone participates in feeling responsible and even shamed at knowing the suicidal candidate. If these feelings are not healed the vampire of suicidal death can strike again and again.

    LINDA LEE LANDON, Life After Suicide

    When suicide is out of fashion we conclude that none but madmen destroy themselves; and all the efforts of courage appear chimerical to dastardly minds ... Nevertheless, how many instances are there, well attested, of men, in every other respect perfectly discreet, who, without remorse, rage, or despair, have quitted life for no other reason than because it was a burden to them, and have died with more composure than they lived?

    DAVID HUME, Essays on Suicide and the Immortality of the Soul

    Suicide may also be regarded as an experiment -- a question which man puts to Nature, trying to force her to answer. The question is this: What change will death produce in a man’s existence and in his insight into the nature of things? It is a clumsy experiment to make; for it involves the destruction of the very consciousness which puts the question and awaits the answer.

    ARTHUR SCHOPENHAUER, Parerga and Paralipomena

    If suicide is allowed then everything is allowed. If anything is not allowed then suicide is not allowed. This throws a light on the nature of ethics, for suicide is, so to speak, the elementary sin. And when one investigates it it is like investigating mercury vapour in order to comprehend the nature of vapours.


    I'm not disparaging suicides when I call them weak, I'm pointing out that anybody who would consider doing a thing like that needs help. I don't think a normal, mentally healthy person commits suicide.

    JESSE VENTURA, I Ain't Got Time to Bleed

    From the perspective of the one committing suicide, his or her act can be one of the most perverse forms of moral manipulation, as it abandons those left behind to their shame, guilt, and grief. Suicide is something like a metaphysical "I gotcha!" It is often an attempt to kill or wound others.

    STANLEY HAUERWAS, The Hauerwas Reader

  3. Gentlemen: Everyone dies sooner or later. My possible but unlikely death is centered around what I believe. Who made any of you the judge and jury of when and how I leave this consensual simulated reality? And on the Internet anyone can find quotes that support their opinions so the above are irrelevant in the context of my story. But I do think that Friedrich comes the closest in characterizing my leap of faith.

  4. Since you refer your readers to Anthony Bragalia's blog, I include my latest response to his comments here also:

    Hello Again Anthony,

    I like your softer approach; it suits you better. First I want to correct a misperception that I neglected in my first response. I never 'predicted' a ship landing in Arizona in 1998. It was Richard C. Hoagland who was saying that and since I lived in that area of Arizona I naturally became part of his story. So your comparison between a UFO landing and a portal opening is flawed. And besides my naive friend, do you really believe that the public would actually learn of something so detrimental to maintaining the status quo if that indeed happened in 1998?

    You once again take several of my statements out of context. One needs to read my entire story at my web site. But I will say this much here. Though you are correct about my flirting with death, flirting is the key element. I believe that I will need to risk my life to accomplish my objective. I am willing to do that for what I believe. If it is results in my physical death, so be it. What I hope to accomplish is well worth the risk.
    I find it quite sad that people are more concerned about the physical act of a lawyer jumping off a rock than they are about the reasons for that decision. My beliefs have evolved over the years based upon new information and my web site (specifically the Countdown Journal) reflects my latest thinking. When you can articulate those reasons I will listen to any argument based upon any information on the web site. But then again how do you argue with a person's overwhelming faith?

    My family, friends, fellow attorneys, judges, and strangers are aware of my beliefs. More importantly, while they do not support or encourage them, they do respect my right to make those decisions that affect my life and death. And though you disagree with what I believe about the nature of this intelligently designed simulated reality - in my story it is consensual. Do you deny me my right of sovereignty?

  5. One of my colleagues just posted the following on Duensing's blog. Since you reference that blog as well as include his comments above I thought it only fair to also include here an opinion based upon fact not fiction. I have broken it into two parts to meet your HTML criteria.

    Part One:

    "As someone who knows Peter Gersten as a close friend, co-worker and fellow member of the State Bar of Arizona, who sees him almost daily, who has discussed his beliefs in depth over a period of years, and who is himself approaching 50 years of serious study (and experience) of anomalous phenomena, I suspect that I am in a somewhat better position than you to assess whether Peter is in need of professional help or mass efforts at dissuasion.

    In the first place, Peter has made quite clear that he does not know precisely what form his “leap of faith” will take. He intends to be at the appointed place (Bell Rock, Sedona) at the appointed time (11:11 UT on 12-21-2012) and allow his destiny to unfold as it will. If it is indeed a physical leap of faith and takes him off the edge of Bell Rock to his death rather than through a cosmic portal as he anticipates – well, frankly, so be it. Since the dawn of man, perfectly sane and rational people have willingly died for their beliefs. I happen to be a Christian; when the apostle Peter attempted to dissuade Jesus from going to His certain death, Jesus rebuked him sternly: “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.” I suspect Peter Gersten might have a similar response to your blog, along the lines of “Mind your own business, you who do not even know me and have made no effort to understand my beliefs.”

    Secondly, Peter’s beliefs have not suddenly blossomed out of the current 2012 frenzy. They have evolved over a period of many years. His concept of a leap of faith is mostly closely tied to a personal experience that occurred long before the 2012 frenzy. If you knew him at all, you would know that he has examined and refined his beliefs over a long period. This process, which I believe will continue right up until 11:11 on 12-21-2012, has included openly questioning whether he might indeed be delusional. He is well-aware of the Trickster aspect of all anomalous phenomena and of the numerous people who have embarrassed themselves (or worse) by taking “Guidance from the Beyond” too seriously. My point being, you are far off the mark if you believe that some sort of madness has suddenly possessed Peter and that he is acting precipitously.

  6. Part Two:

    Lastly, to characterize Peter’s leap of faith as an act of suicide presupposes that we are in fact not living in a virtual reality and that a portal (whatever that may mean) is in fact not opening at Bell Rock at 11:11 on 12-21-2012. If I chose to die rather than renounce Christ, my death would likewise be viewed as an act of suicide by those who didn’t share my beliefs – but untold numbers of sane and rational Christians have made precisely this choice over the centuries. Every aspect of Peter’s belief system has at least some evidentiary basis. The notion that we exist within a cosmic software program is not even viewed as radical anymore. The notion that our reality is “corrupted” extends back to Genesis and beyond. The notion that December 21, 2012 is a date of potentially cosmic significance is shared by millions of people. Only the need for Peter to make a leap of faith at Bell Rock is unique and personal to Peter, and his beliefs in this regard are based on experiences that he finds to be evidentiary and compelling. While I might (and do) remind Peter to beware of the Trickster, I cannot say that he is “delusional,” “suicidal” or “needs help” any more than I could say this about my fellow Christians or about anyone else who seems to be sane and rational in all other aspects of his life but happens to attach controlling weight to his personal anomalous experiences.

    So who are you to attempt to dissuade Peter or urge others to attempt to do so??? You quite literally do not know who or what you are talking about. To the extent that I find your sesquipedalian ramblings intelligible at all, they strike me as more in the vein of self-promotion (associating yourself with Peter’s name and reputation) than as expressions of genuine concern. I sympathize with the death of your son, having recently lost a wife, but that has nothing to do with Peter. I also find it insulting and presumptuous that you would think that those of us who actually know Peter intimately would need advice from you as to how we should deal with him or react to his plans"

  7. Peter,

    Thanks for sharing the above for my readers. As you can read above and see from my linking to your material - I am not doubting the possibilitiy that you are nearly right about the virtualness of our momentary reality - and, in addition, I respect your right to control your body and outcome of your body actions.

    That said, others, including myself, can percieve realityu in a different manner and extend that viewpoint of it for your consideration.

    Rick Philli[ps


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