Friday, June 09, 2006

The Left's Reaction to Zarqawi's Death Diminishes Us All

Only humans can fail to become what they are. Yesterday we killed the monster Zarqawi, a ready example of someone who failed to become human. Instead, he became a monster. Only human beings can become monsters, for a vile human being is far lower than a noble animal. No animal but the human being can be unfit for life and unworthy of the cosmos that bearthed and begaialed him from the womb of the eternal voidgin. --Petey

I wish I’d thought of this:

Democrats Vow to Fight On After Zarqawi Loss
by Scott Ott

(2006-06-09) — As Blackberry devices and cell phones on Capitol Hill hummed with news of the death of terrorist leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi yesterday, Congressional Democrats vowed that despite the loss they would fight on in “the war on the war on terror.”

“Zarqawi will be missed because he put a human face on the futility of the illegal U.S. occupation of Iraq,” said one unnamed lawmaker, who assured a reporter that “Democrats are still optimistic. We’re still looking for the silver lining.”

Rep. John Murtha, D-PA, a former Marine and vocal critic of the military occupation of Iraq, immediately denounced “the Zarqawi massacre” and suggested that the F-16 pilot who dropped the bombs had snapped under pressure and murdered the al Qaeda leader “in cold blood.”

Sen. Arlen Specter, R-PA, demanded an explanation of the secret intelligence gathering techniques and surveillance used to find Mr. Zarqawi.

“I want to give the president an opportunity to explain the program to the Congress and to assure the American people that nobody’s civil rights were violated,” said Sen. Specter.

Meanwhile, Democrat National Committee Chairman Howard Dean and former presidential candidate Al Gore observed a moment of silence as they heard of the passing of Mr. Zarqawi, a fellow Internet pioneer.”

*****

It makes a fellow wonder about the whole nature of meaning when an event of this magnitude has such a different meaning for a good portion of the country. How can something so obviously wonderful, even sacred--for it is a sacred duty to “purge evil from our midst,” as the Bible puts it--be taken by so many on the left as a negative?

I saw Nick Berg’s father on TV last night, promulgating some seriously twisted religious understanding by noting that he equally disapproves of both Zarqawi and Bush and lamenting that “the death of every human being diminishes me." On huffingandpissed, your one-stop shopping place for leftwing moonbattery, there is a morally confused article denouncing such “targeted assassinations” as “unethical.” A Washington Post columnist even praised Zarqawi’s courageous method of killing as “up close and personal,” in contrast to our cold, detached, and unmanly methods.

Some of this is political, but not the majority of it. Rather, I think this is one of those frightening areas that illuminates just how different the leftist mind is from a normal individual, just how wide the chasm is in our cultural war for the soul of America. For it is not a matter of logic, or reason, or intelligence. Rather, there is something sick in the soul of someone who doesn’t have a deep sense of moral satisfaction at the death of someone as purely evil as Zarqawi--or who is so morally retarded that they regard President Bush as evil. Something has gone seriously wrong with the soul of such a moral invert.

When I say that there is something sick in the soul of such an individual, I mean that literally, not as an insult. And I am not speaking as a psychologist. I’m not talking about the mind, but the soul. Very few people actually talk about the soul, even when they use the word. They either confuse it with the ego, which is the conscious, “executive” part of our personality, or they conflate it with the spirit, which is the impersonal essence of the human being.

The soul is what Sri Aurobindo called the “psychic being” or what the Christian fathers called the “nous.” It lies behind and above the ego, and is oriented on a vertical plane. It is the part of us that grows with spiritual growth. All authentic traditions make this sharp distinction between the ego and the psychic being. It is only the latter which is privy to objective truth, objective morality, and objective beauty. The ego deals only in subjective opinion (although the distinction between ego and soul is not absolute, and there are egos that have not entirely lost touch with the higher; rather, the “lostness” of the ego is on a continuum).

The psychic being cannot argue with the ego, it can only instruct it. But the ego knows only argument. Since everything is subjective for it, it can easily come up with arguments against the knowledge of the psychic being. I know in an instant (as do most of our “regulars”) when a commenter is coming at me from the ego, which is why I do not argue with them. Rather, I tell them either to read and learn from the commenters on this blog or go elsewhere.

This entire blog is aimed only at people who have fairly deep acquaintance with the psychic being, whatever their particular tradition calls it. If they haven’t identified the psychic being, then most of what I write will make no sense, especially if they are dealing with a particularly resistant, resentful, or rebellious ego. If you try to argue with such an individual about, say, the sanctity of marriage, they literally won’t know what you’re talking about. In fact, they will reverse the situation and project their ego into you, and accuse you of some base political motivation in merely trying to preserve marriage from the predations of tyrannical and illiberal judges.

There are two kinds of meaning, one imposed, the other discovered. The former is an egoic caricature of the latter, for it involves cutting reality down to the size of the diminished ego and understanding everything in its narrow terms. Various metaphors are used in the Bible to describe this, for example, eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil vs. eating from the Tree of Life, or building the tower of Babel to surpass God. All liberal and “progressive” forms of spirituality actually drain religion of its spiritual dimension by “containing” it within the ego. The ego shrinks the vastness of Spirit down to something it finds acceptable, so it merely becomes covert auto-worship of the ego itself. Once again it is the ego instructing the soul, instead of vice versa.

Scripture has a “vectorial” character that is designed to lead us beyond the ego to something higher. We do not look “at” scripture, but through and beyond it, to what it is pointing at (and ultimately derived from). We are subsidiarily aware of it in the same way that words are subsidiary to the meaning they are meant to convey. We do not understand a sentence by taking each of the words, looking up their meaning in the dictionary, and then assembling their collective meaning. Rather, we intuit a higher meaning that the words are pointing at while we read. The higher meaning is actually anterior to the words one uses, and is precisely that which organizes the “lower” words.

This is even more true of authentic scripture, which is uses words to convey meanings that are far beyond words. But it is always possible to understand the words in a horizontal way, which is to misunderstand them, precisely. The problem is not so much literalism as lateralism, for both errors involve the incursion and hegemomy of the ego. Only a particularly deluded ego cannot know that God was pleased beyond words upon hearing of Zarqawi’s death, for it makes his work a whole lot easier.

They have no idea about the world and talk like little children.... [This] is a defense of civilization and its highest attained social, cultural and spiritual values and of the whole future of humanity....

You should not think of it as a fight for certain nations against others... It is a struggle for an ideal that has to establish itself on earth in the life of humanity, for a Truth that has yet to realize itself fully and against a darkness and falsehood that are trying to overwhelm the earth and mankind....

It is the forces behind the battle that have to be seen and not this or that superficial circumstance... It is a struggle for the liberty of mankind to develop, for conditions in which men have freedom and room to think and act according to the light in them, and to grow in the Truth, grow in the Spirit.

There cannot be the slightest doubt that if one side wins, there will be an end of all such freedom and hope of light and truth, and the [spiritual] work that has to be done will be subjected to conditions which would make it humanly impossible; there will be a reign of falsehood and darkness, a cruel oppression and degradation for most of the human race such as people in this country do not dream of and cannot yet realize.
--Sri Aurobindo

19 Comments:

Anonymous dilys said...

Maybe later today I'll pull out Czeslaw Milosz' The
Captive Mind. His essay called "ketman" -- the term for the perverse pleasure the mind takes in buckling down to oppression and lies even while the after-vision of the truth is present -- is what blasted my illusion that in political and economic misery I'd rise above it and live in the center of my heart.

Bilgewater. We would all be reduced to misery, except for the occasional long-preparing and usually unsuspected saint. And it is presumption and foolishness to declare oneself one of those.

I can only cherish the dailiness of this incredible prosperity and liberty in which we walk and drive and speak and write every day. We don't have the experience of the contrast, so unless we truly grasped the Sri Aurobindo perspective you quote, we have no idea what is at stake. The war on the war on terror is wicked and foolish and it needs to wind down now, including a deep breath on the part of all the cute "on the other hand" rhetorical posturing that seems to be the contaminated product of a million late-century public schools.

6/09/2006 08:14:00 AM  
Blogger Tamara said...

Your analysis of the sickness of the Left is spot-on. It goes beyond a difference of political opinion, and does indeed point to a moral bankruptcy resulting from a soul sickness.

6/09/2006 08:17:00 AM  
Anonymous Hoarhey said...

>>"There cannot be the slightest doubt that if one side wins, there will be an end of all such freedom and hope of light and truth, and the [spiritual] work that has to be done will be subjected to conditions which would make it humanly impossible; there will be a reign of falsehood and darkness, a cruel oppression and degradation for most of the human race such as people in this country do not dream of and cannot yet realize."<< --Sri Aurobindo

After 9/11, in that time when America had stumbled and was getting up, a few of the worlds leaders saw the truth that the U.S. was the only entity standing between them and a decent into the tyranny their ancestors had lived under through the ages. It was as plain as day and I could see it in their reactions. They realized that they alone hadn't the strength to resist and how tenuous and easily lost were the lives they led and the cultures they had built. I believe the people who saw this reality carry that conviction to this day. The ones who didn't see still fritter along as if the world hadn't shown them the reality of the circumstances, and life is still a theoretical mind game. A place in which they are free to insert any reality they deem appropriate.
Michael Berg is one of the latter. A statement he made which was not widely reported was that he had wished to sit down with Zarqawi and talk things over with him and was lamenting the fact that this opportunity was gone. He is one where the true reality of the situation would not register until the knife had started across his throat accompanied by chants of "Allah Akbar".
Thank God for the ones who have seen the reality of the circumstance, and aren’t so suicidal.

6/09/2006 09:31:00 AM  
Blogger Dr. Sanity said...

The left's reaction reflects their complete moral bankruptcy. I went to at least 50 or 60 leftist blogs yesterday for my post on their reaction to Zarqawi's death; and all but a handful were completely unable to appreciate what had happened and simply filtered it through their [chronic]BDS. The amount of paranoia and frank delusion exhibited was absolutely breathtaking--especially when I realized that these blogs were for the most part, now in the mainstream. I offered antipsychotics to one person who claimed that this was all set up by Bush (Zarqawi didn't even exist and was invented by Bushco to serve their ends). The person who claimed this also claimed to have a PhD in history!

But your are correct. This is more than a defect of mind--this is a sickness of soul that seems to be spreading faster than we ever thought Bird Flu would.

6/09/2006 11:27:00 AM  
Anonymous jwm said...

The LA Times, CBS news, and every other voice in the political war against George Bush are all bending over backwards, and contorting themselves into moral pretzels to try to put a negative spin the death of Zarqawi. I have come to hate these people as much as I hate the islamonazis.
More and more I come to the conclusion that 9/11 drew a line of spiritual demarcation across the western world. In that one day the sheep were truly parted from the goats. If that day didn't wake people up then they are incapable of awakening. The left has become a force as hostile as islam to civilization. Michael Berg and Cindy Shehan are as toxic as the worst of the mullahs. Worse, the Bergs, the Shehans, and the peaceniks masquerading as religious leaders have assumed a cloying mantle of moral superiority. This makes them as appealing to gullible as they are dangerous to the country. YAAARRRGGGHHH. End of rant. The Zarkman is in hell. That's cause to be happy.

JWM

6/09/2006 11:30:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yea we need good spokespeople for the truth inspired by their christian faith...like Ann Coulter !!!

6/09/2006 03:29:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Oh, I get it, sorrychasm. The sorry chasm between anonymous and a clue.

6/09/2006 03:51:00 PM  
Anonymous jwm said...

correcting typo: ...as appealing to the gullible...

Ann Coulter rocks! Glad you agree anonymouse. (no typo)

:)

JWM

6/09/2006 04:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Petey said...

Did you mean "aninnymouse?"

6/09/2006 04:08:00 PM  
Anonymous jwm said...

Typo.
;)

JWM

6/09/2006 04:14:00 PM  
Blogger gumshoe1 said...

Bob -

I'd appreciate if you'd consider
writing a thread on Ken Wilber's
notion of "the green meme"...


to parapharase my limited recollection:

red meme: primitive/tribal
purple meme:?
blue meme: conservative/tradtional(western)worldview: familes,nation-states,hierarchy
orange meme:?
green meme: "progressive",but misguided...the 60s/'age of aquarius' hoping for love and peace,simply by wishing it into being.

Berg's father wanting
to "talk it over".

Dr. Sanity's Phd History Prof needing,no DEMANDING,that
Zarkowwee be "an invention of BushCo".

i believe the online excerpts i read were from Wilber's novel,"Boomeritis"...

Belmont Club and Gates of Vienna
have had recent links to
stories on the UN and Malloch Brown's scolding of the US and the feudal,non-democratic,non-representative,EU(SSR)gov't and the end of identity with "Nationalism",which,of course, is unremittently evil...

the Press Anciene has seen itself as "above nationalism"for some time now(floating in the ozone,as it were...CNN's Eason Jordan and his little dramatic stage play,w/o proof,at Davos:"US troops in Iraq Targetting Journalists!!"as an example)

the "green meme" sees itself as "progressive world citizens" but then,so do the Islamonazis see themselves,in their own way.


the green meme is "too progressive" to grok the
primitive "red" aspects of the Islamist world view and demonstrates it on a regular basis.
(and "too progressive" to acknowledge the primitive "red" aspects of socialism's past,as well.)

the Islamos look at
the greens and see decadence and corruption,not advanced,
progressive thinking.

the Quran says:"let them find a harshness in you".

gosh! that's so...JUDGEMENTAL!


Wilber strikes me as insightful, and overly glib and prolific at the same time.

thought maybe you could give your blog readers an executive summary.


thanks.

6/09/2006 11:52:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Gumshoe--

I stopped reading Wilber over a decade ago, so I didn't follow him into the color-coded mass psychology business. In order to comment on it, I would first have to read it and then reframe it in my own non-new age terms. My sense is that I would regard these "green people" as having a far more serious soul pathology at their very core. They are not the type of people who would have any interest in my more traditional ideas.

6/10/2006 05:48:00 AM  
Anonymous Sal said...

Bob, that reminds me -
last trip to Borders's, where it seems that Wilber is smokin' hot, I was taken aback to find "Metaphysics" right next to, and overlapping into "Magic". Beyond the obvious "Pyramid Power" nonsense and Dr. Chopra, what might be the buzzwords to look for to avoid the New Age?
I can spot "progressive" Catholics in an instant - other groups, not so savvy about. Thanks.

(Dilys - I was thinking the exact same thing about dailiness and blessings bought at a great cost, sitting in my paid-for air-conditioned home, with dinner thawing in the fridge, able to work on a frivolity like the g-child's flower girl dress while watching a movie about D-Day.
That much bounty is almost surreal.

Next up - a circus tent-sized maternity bridesmaid dress for a daughter with more friend loyalty than sense. I love a challenge, though.)

6/10/2006 06:17:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Sal--

I don't know that I can give you a general rule. In general, the truth value of a spiritual book is going to vary inversely with its popularity. Timeless gems like Meditations on the Tarot are very few and far between, and are not big sellers.

In my own case, it simply required much trial and error. But the metaphysics department in a book store generally has nothing to do with traditional metaphysics. It's mostly just a wastebasket for idle speculation. Spiritual geniuses within a tradition are naturally preferable to mediocre minds outside one.

6/10/2006 09:07:00 AM  
Blogger copithorne said...

You opened your diatribe about "the left" with a clutch of concocted quotes.

Then you illustrated your concoctions with a phrase by Nick Berg's father, a couple of words by an unnamed post you read and your characterization of another unnamed piece.

If you disagree with people, you should disagree with them. You should illustrate their views and explain why and how you see things differently.

But "the left" as you present it is a projection of your disowned super-ego.

6/10/2006 06:38:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Copithorne--

As the unintentionally ironic Copithorne once said, "If you disagree with people, you should disagree with them. You should illustrate their views and explain why and how you see things differently, not just tell them they are projecting their disowned super-ego."

6/10/2006 07:21:00 PM  
Blogger copithorne said...

Your post is entitled "The Left's Reaction to Zarqawi's Death diminishes us all." Yet "The Left's Reaction" does not appear in your post. In a well written essay, arguments are used to substantiate the thesis. I encourage you in that direction.

The only example of the "Left's" reaction is the quote, "the death of every human being diminishes me." You may not share that sensitivity. But you would need to take it up more fully and provide a broader context of Mr. Berg's remarks to give some meaning to the argument that this statement by Mr. Berg is "sick" and "diminishes us all." If you did that, it may be more possible for me to disagree with you. When I consider Mr. Berg, your reaction does seem mean and lacking in curiosity.

Mostly, though, writing thousands of words about a "reaction" that doesn't seem to exist outside your head suggests a private agenda.

I do disagree with one dimension of your post. I know it is common in Thomas Moore psychological circles to talk of the "soul" being "sick." In every theological tradition, the soul is understood as unconditioned. It does not get sick.

6/10/2006 09:45:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Copithorne:

I am writng for people that take certain things for granted, such as the left's devaluing of Zarqawi's death. I do not believe that a lefist is convinced by evidence, but here are some examples anyway:

http://drsanity.blogspot.com/

Regarding theology and pathology, you are confusing soul and spirit. There is a form of soul illness that cannot be reduced to psychology. If you believe there are no actions that can damage the soul, I will simply take you at your word, but I know otherwise. Logically you must also believe there are no actions or influences that can elevate the soul, which would explain a lot. Again, I know otherwise.

6/11/2006 07:14:00 AM  
Blogger copithorne said...

If you want to take up any of the quotes at Dr. Sanity's post and explain why you disagree with them, I would be interested. The quotes selected are portions of larger essays that don't strike me as very different from portions of what George Bush had to say about Zarqawi's death. To me, the whole effort of collection illustrates how the consolation of having enemies is a primary motivation for people.

It is poignant that you believe you can damage your soul and elevate your soul through your efforts. I experience these beliefs as sad self slander. If you keep at your efforts you will attain the blessings of faith one day. That day could be today if you allowed it.

6/11/2006 02:56:00 PM  

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