Tuesday, October 10, 2006

The Children of Light vs. the Communist Maninfestation (7.04.08)

Communists have been overturning the order of the cosmos since, what, 1848? That’s when the great anti-Moses belched forth his reverse Sinai revelation and laid down the left-handed version of human history and ontology. But was he merely giving voice to a much older conflict? Was it just an old whine in a new battle?

There is a rabbinical tradition that attempts to read between the lines of scripture to discern its hidden meaning. In so doing, the rabbi will invent a midrash to illuminate a passage. These are often full of paradox, puns, wordplay and other midrashcally rabbitorahcal devoices, almost like zen koans.

Sometimes a midrash is necessary when you encounter a couple of Bible passages that seem to contradict each other. I have always been intrigued by the fact that Genesis tells two very different versions of the creation of man. Most people seem to just skim over this inconsistency, but maybe God is trying to tell us something. Perhaps we need a midrash to reconcile the two.

Boris Mouravieff had an interesting way of reconciling the two passages. That is, he felt that they were not referring to the same event, but to two distinctly different ones. In the pre-Adamic account in Genesis 1:27, both man and woman are created simultaneously. But in the second version in Genesis 2:7, God forms man “out of the dust of the ground,” and more importantly, “breathed into his nostrils the breath of life” so that he became a truly “living being” with a divine spark within.

You might say that God first created “horizontal man,” who is capable only of organic or biological growth. But he then corrected this deficiency by creating “vertical man” who is capable of spiritual evolution. This new kind of man, who had had a living soul breathed into him, “possessed in a latent state a potential that the purely animal world does not possess, that of passing on to the human and even superhuman stages of development."

Before you get all high and mighty, bear in mind that this was all before the fall and much subsequent miscegenation between the children of light and the daughters of the earth: “Pursuing the mirage of temporal goods,” Adam and Eve lost touch with the higher intellectual center through which they had enjoyed direct contact with God. “The beauty of the daughters of men did the rest. Adam turned away from his real ‘I’ and identified with his personality.”

Waylon Jennings gives a similar account in his Black Rose:

When the devil made that woman
Lord he threw the pattern away
She was built for speed, with the tools you need
To make a new fool every day

So, the question is, is the planet still inhabited by two kinds of people, children of the Light and sons and daughters of the earth?

Oh, I think so. Can’t you tell when you’re in the presence of the former? Is it just me, or when you look into their eyes, don’t you see something roughly halfway between animal and human?

They even speak differently. Not only is there no light in their speech, but there is darkness visible. Here, check this out:

“The field of scientific research in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea successfully conducted an underground nuclear test under secure conditions on October 9, 2006, at a stirring time when all the people of the country are making a great leap forward in the building of a great, prosperous, powerful socialist nation.... The nuclear test was conducted with indigenous wisdom and technology 100 percent. It marks a historic event as it greatly encouraged and pleased the Korean People's Army and people that have wished to have powerful self-reliant defense capability. It will contribute to defending the peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and in the area around it.”

Sounds like a combination of a Chinese restaurant menu and a scientology flier. It is actually full of truth, for, as we have mentioned in the past, one must know the truth in order to lie about it. Those truths include the fact that North Korea has no democracy, no science, no greatness, no prosperity, no indigenous wisdom or technology, and no intention to defend peace and stability anywhere. Other than that, it is an honest statement.

“No science.” What do you mean by that, Bob? Doesn’t the nuclear test prove that these Sons of Darkness indeed have science?

No, not at all. That is precisely the problem. Like Iran, this is a country that could have never developed science, nor would it ever tolerate science. They can only steal and imitate science, just as they can only imitate and ape democracy, wisdom and prosperity.

For science developed only in one time and place on earth, because a precondition of science was the Judeo-Christian ideal of liberty. Science is the exact opposite of a topdown enterprise--Dr. Evil or Lil’ Kim shouting at his Number Two, “build me a bomb! Now!” All of the hundreds and thousands of little discoveries that made nuclear technology possible could only have been made by hundreds and thousands of scientists freely investigating reality--pure and unfettered curiosity about the way the world works.

Would this type of absolute freedom to pursue one’s curiosity be tolerated for one moment in Iran or North Korea? Of course not. Thus they have no science and can only steal from liberty in order to enforce slavery. Very ironic. I often wonder if the Iranians realize that they are messing with “Jewish physics.” Hitler certainly did, which thankfully delayed his plans to develop a weapon of mass destruction. It’s a little difficult to develop a nuclear device with the Aryan physics of Newton or with an abacus.

Bob, I’m still a little uncomfortable with your division of human kind into two different species.

Okay, first of all, it is a metaphor, a heuristic device. Secondly, don’t forget about the miscegenation. While there are exceptions who retain more pure characteristics that betray their provenance--a Stalin or Marx on the one hand, Lincoln or Reagan on the other--most people are a mixture that tips one way or the other.

Here’s a banal example. You tell me if you simply disagree with this man, or if you might as well belong to a different species.

The New Yorker calls this Princeton professor, Peter Singer, the world’s “most influential living philosopher.” It is Singer’s belief that “middle class families in the United States have a moral obligation to pay 33 percent of the first $30,000 they make to combat poverty around the globe.” After the first $30,000, they should pay 100 percent. He explicitly rejects the theory of property rights as an ‘unacceptable ethical view,’” and argues that certain animals are “persons” that have “the same special claim to be protected” as humans. He also maintains that infanticide is in some cases morally obligatory (Larry Arn, in a special edition of the Hillsdale College Imprimus).

Just as Korea does not have science, Princeton apparently does not have philosophy, certainly not in the literal sense of “loving wisdom.” Singer would undoubtedly find my metaphor of two kinds of humans to be repellant. This is because, like all radical secularists, he knows that there are actually no humans. For equating animals and humans does not elevate animals so much as denigrate human beings. At least those in whom God breathed a living soul.

63 Comments:

Blogger Lisa said...

"But in the second version in Genesis 2:7, God forms man “out of the dust of the ground,” and more importantly, “breathed into his nostrils the breath of life” so that he became a truly “living being” with a divine spark within."

Question posed to Bob and Bobbleheads, Does a baby not have a soul and divine spark until his/her first independent breath? Is abortion the actual killing of a human with a soul or just the disposal of an unwanted body?

I do not mean to sound crass or heartless as I have seen pictures of fetuses and they are remarkable starts of life. I just think some parents are uncapable of producing and raising a productive and healthy human being and God saves the soul or spark of life for another baby's body. Late term abortions when the baby could breathe independently and the woman is in no health danger are indeed evil and immoral. Legal abortion is more like destroying the vehicle rather than the essence.

10/10/2006 08:09:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"For science developed only in one time and place on earth, because a precondition of science was the Judeo-Christian ideal of liberty. Science is the exact opposite of a topdown enterprise--Dr. Evil or Lil’ Kim shouting at his Number Two, “build me a bomb! Now!” All of the hundreds and thousands of little discoveries that made nuclear technology possible could only have been made by hundreds and thousands of scientists freely investigating reality--pure and unfettered curiosity about the way the world works."


Quoting Eric Hoffer's "The Ordeal of Change".

"To the intellectual the struggle for freedom is more vital than the actuality of a free society. He would rather work, fight, talk, for liberty than have it. The fact is that up to now the free society has not been good for the intllectual. It has neither accorded him a superior status to sustain his confidence nor made it easy for him to acquire an unquestioned sense of social usefulness. For he derives his sense of usefulness mainly from directing, instructing, and planning---from minding other people's business---and is bound to feel superfluous and neglected where people believe themselves competent to manage individual and communal affairs, and are impatient of supervision and regulation. A free society is as much a threat to the intellectual's sense of worth as an automated society is to the workingman's sense of worth. Any social order that can function with a minimum of leadership will be anathema to the intellectual."

I have to agree with Mr. Hoffer in this case. It is easy to observe the intellectuals(scientists) disdain for the masses. This disdain leads them to favor big government policies which allows them to control the masses.

10/10/2006 09:10:00 AM  
Anonymous Will said...

>> . . . is the planet still inhabited by two kinds of people, children of the Light and sons and daughters of the earth?<<

I think not only is that true but that the distinction between the two is becoming more clarified by the day. It's as if there's a magnetization process under way, and maybe in short order, all "fence straddlers" are going to be pulled toward one pole or another, depending on what the balance of their free-willed choices have been. In any event, it's getting so that the idea of attempts at compromise and conciliation between the two sides is, to me, morally repugnant. Which is why I keep rattling on about a de facto civil war.

Lisa, I just don't think there's a hard/fast rule or divine law as to when a baby is actually ensouled, but I don't really know. By the way, the exact same Peter Singer that Bob mentioned surely doesn't believe in the concept of a human soul, but seems to gauge an infant's viability on some notion of "self-awareness" - by Singer's reckoning, an infant up to 2-3 weeks old has no such self-awareness as Singer defines it, thus infanticide of said infant is perfectly permissible in his view.

10/10/2006 09:35:00 AM  
Anonymous tsebring said...

Bob, not to try to split hairs (or is it heirs?) too much here, but is it not possible that the "vertical man" was created before the "horizontal man"? The reason I say this is that there are certain scriptures later in the OT and in the NT that speak of God knowing us before we were born, and of us being predestined before creation to be raised with Christ. I have always believed that man is, at the core of his being, an immortal, spiritual entity, and that our "spirit man" originates in the heart of God, where it has always existed, and that it will return there when our time here is through. Our bodies, though they are indeed "fearfully and wonderfully made", are vessels by which our true selves, that is, our spirit selves, live out the time allotted to us on this earth. Our spirit selves have always been, and will always be, immortal. The question is merely one of where we spend that eternity after our lives here; in God's presence, or out of it. I won't go into all that here.

This being so; why do we have no memory of our spirit lives in eternity past? A real interesting question that dogs me sometimes, and for which I have no clear answer. Bob, Will, Van, Joan, et al, feel free to help me out on this and other matters here that I'm perhaps not being coherent on.

But, going back to my original point of humans existing before creation, if it is true, it goes to the original central question of the abortion debate: Does the immortal spirit of a person become incarnate at the moment of conception, or sometime later, such as when they are born, or when they are "born again"? I tend to think the first; for instance, the fetal John the Baptist leapt in Elizabeth's womb when Mary, pregnant with the fetal Jesus, was in the vicinity. If this is true, then abortion is murder at ANY stage of pregnancy. The spirit and soul of a person are meant to inhabit only that body that God has created to contain that person; if the body dies, or is born stillborn, that spirit returns to its creator, where it lives on. The idea that a person's spirit self can just inhabit another body if the one God has created becomes unavailable is akin to the idea of reincarnation; i.e., that a person may come back as a cow or grasshopper, or another person, in another life, and that the spirit keeps going from one body to another until it achieves spiritual perfection of some sort and then can leave this earth (I know that's a simplification, but I think that's the general idea). If you believe in reincarnation, the idea of dispensable bodies could be a logical assumption. But whether or not our "vertical" or "horizontal" essences come first into this world, I don't believe that the Christian, Jewish, or Muslim scriptures allow for the reincarnation scenario; therefore, Lisa, if you believe in a Judeo-Christian God, you may want to rethink your ideas about early abortions "destroying the vehicle rather than the essence".

10/10/2006 10:22:00 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Good point, Will. Have you also been appalled by the Fox News teaser about celebrity abortions? I mean, really, can't some things just stay private once in a while and not become politicized? It really is all about choice!

10/10/2006 10:26:00 AM  
Anonymous tsebring said...

correction to the above: I believe that the spirit of the human was created by God before the creation talked about in Genesis, not that the spirit of the human being "always existed", as I previously and erroneously stated. That would make us equal with God as being uncreated beings, and equality with God has already been tried, with bad results.

10/10/2006 10:26:00 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Jewish scriptures do believe in reincarnation. That is one reason why many Jews do not name their children after living relatives. I believe it is to save a part of that living person's soul from departing it's vessel and entering a new one.

10/10/2006 10:29:00 AM  
Anonymous tsebring said...

Lisa, my bad on the Jewish scriptures, if it's Talmudic or rabbinical ones that you are referring to, or one of the Midrashes that Bob is referring to; my I have never seen it implied in any way in the Old Testament, which is my only reference point for Judaism at this point, and I understand that the OT is not the only set of writings that Jewish folks rely on.

However, I still stand by my belief that the spirit/soul of the human inhabits only one body on earth, and returns to the creator when our life here is done, once and for all, period. Whether that means inside of God, or Heaven, or the New Jerusalem, I have no idea; I don't pretend to have a corner on the eschatology market(though some of what passes for eschatology these days reads more like scatology). I simply base this on my own readings of the scriptures and my own interpretations of them. For this reason I simply can't embrace the idea of reincarnation or spiritual transmigration.

Again, as to whether a person's divine self was actually created before their physical self, I can't prove that either by scriptures or science; that is simply what I believe. I welcome any further insights on that question.


Bob, as to where the North Koreans, incapable of original thought and creativity as they are, got the bomb technology, you can largely thank Jimmy Carter for that.

10/10/2006 10:54:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Bob, as to where the North Koreans, incapable of original thought and creativity as they are, got the bomb technology, you can largely thank Jimmy Carter for that. "

I'm confused. Exactly what evidence do you have that an artistic or scientific mind cannot and does not strive under a dictatorship. It is the everyday workingman that suffers under a dictatorship. Scientists and artists are elevated to positions of power and prestige. Intellectuals are sometimes thought of as leading the charge for individual freedom, however, the act of fighting for freedom is more important to them than actually having it. I'm in no way condoning opressive regimes. I just don't share your belief that they are completely void of original thought or scientific discovery.

10/10/2006 12:38:00 PM  
Anonymous will said...

Lisa, hmm . . "Celebrity Abortions" could be a game show.

There are plenty of celebrities I wish could be aborted.

And yeah, it's appalling.

10/10/2006 01:09:00 PM  
Blogger wildiris said...

Bob, the only downside to your blog is that you are such a prolific writer that I can’t keep up with you. By the time I have a chance to read and digest one of your essays and come up with a comment or question to post, you’re already one or two more essays ahead of me. So at the risk of being off-topic, I would like to make a response to some of your past writings.

On several occasions in the past, you’ve contrasted ancient Jewish society with its Canaanite neighbors, and have done so from the perspective of child rearing practices. I’ve had a chance to perform a similar exercise, but from the point of view of disease control. It is common in some circles to mock the Old-Testament Mosaic Law, with its endless lists of rules, as being excessive to the point of being nonsensical. But some of those rules directly address issues of diet, food preparation, personal hygiene, general house keeping, and sexual practices. If we can permit ourselves, for a moment, to consider these rules outside of their spiritual context, it becomes a fair question to ask whether or not there were any noticeable health benefits to a society that followed these rules. And given the harsh medical realities of life in ancient times, the answer is, “Most definitely, yes.” (See note at end of post.)

I’m sure, Bob, with your medical background you can do a lot better job of developing this thesis than I ever could. But based on the health benefits that their customs would have brought them, there are a couple of very plausible speculations that one can make about ancient Jewish society.

The first is that their infant mortality rate was probably far lower than what their Canaanite neighbors were experiencing. As infant mortality rates drop and a greater percentage of children survive to adulthood, the more advantageous to a society it becomes to invest resources into the raising of children. I would consider the fact that you have noted this very pattern within the ancient Jewish communities as a confirmation that they were, in fact, experiencing a lower infant mortality rate.

The second speculation, and the one of most tied to the general theme of “One Cosmos”, is that people living in ancient Jewish society would have also had a longer average life expectancy than their Canaanite neighbors. In a world where the average adult life expectancy was only around 35 years to begin with, a life span extended by only a few additional years would have had significant social implications.

In a society where the average life span was 35 years, the median age of a “participating adult” would have been in the mid-to-late twenties. That is, Canaanite society was quite literally a youth society. Its age demographics were probably much the same as what is considered the MTV generation today. Conversely, if the Jewish communities had a life expectancy just 5 years longer, then the median age of a “participating adult” would have been in the early-to-mid thirties. Since the age of thirty is often considered the gateway age between youth and adult behavior, it would seem that the Jewish people were the “adults” and in comparison, the Canaanites were the “youth”.

It has been noted, that the adolescent narcissistic worldview and new-age religiosity of many on the political-left today often resembles the practices and worldviews of ancient pagan societies, like the Canaanites. Could this similarity be simply a function of age-related maturity?

End Note. It varies from difficult to impossible to have a meaningful discussion on this issue with most people, for the simple reason that they have become so accustomed to their access to modern western medicine, that they, quite literally, can’t imagine what a world would be like without it. Just about all of the medical advances that we take so for granted were only invented in the last century. One only has to go back a few generations to find a world where there were no immunizations, no antibiotics or anti-viral drugs. If you got sick, your body either dealt with the infection on its own or you died. The only way to stay well was to avoid getting sick in the first place, and the only way to do that was to avoid as much as possible, those situations where one might be exposed to an infection.

For generations past, being able to live a healthy, disease- and pain-free life was the exception, not the rule. And since it’s hard to lead a spiritually focused life when you’re sick or in pain, past generations did not make the artificial separation between spiritual health and physical health that we are able to indulge ourselves in today, thanks to modern medicine. And it is also this modern decoupling of spiritual values from physical health concerns that makes the traditional morality of past generations so incomprehensible to younger generations today.

10/10/2006 01:40:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Exactly what evidence do you have that an artistic or scientific mind cannot and does not strive under a dictatorship. It is the everyday workingman that suffers under a dictatorship. Scientists and artists are elevated to positions of power and prestige...

...as long as they toe the party line and please Their Betters. The only "striving" is in the direction the dictator wants and chooses.

So you have one man's direction and striving instead of all the possible directions and strivings that would otherwise occur.

10/10/2006 02:21:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Anonymous--

You are so thoroughly misquoting me that it is difficult to respond. I can only reiterate that of course science could not, and has not, ever developed independently in any closed society. To even say "science" is to say free and independent investigation of reality, with all scientists being able to choose problems that interest them and share their information freely with other scientists. You can no more have science in an unfree society than you can have democracy. You can only have a sham version of it in which they borrow and steal liberally from free societies. Neither Iran nor North Korea would have independently discovered nuclear technolology in a thousand years.

10/10/2006 02:48:00 PM  
Anonymous Zhombre said...

I subscribe to Mark Twain's explanation that Man started out a little lower than the angels and has been getting a little lower ever since; and now, in the hierarchy of beings, ranks somewhere between the angels and the French.

10/10/2006 03:50:00 PM  
Blogger Alan said...

"Oh, I think so. Can’t you tell when you’re in the presence of the former? Is it just me, or when you look into their eyes, don’t you see something roughly halfway between animal and human?"

And these people are often among the most successful, in worldly terms of money, fame, and power.

10/10/2006 05:15:00 PM  
Anonymous 2b over said...

Those worldly terms money, fame, and power are what it's all about in the profane church of the earthbound - that's the ambrosia that sustains the many gripping pleasures of form.

10/10/2006 05:55:00 PM  
Anonymous stu said...

Synchronicity strikes again.

I haven't recited Torah in over a decade, and I rarely sing. But this morning, for no apparent reason, I found myself repetitively chanting Genesis 1:1-2 in the shower.

And then I read today's post.

Wierd.

Anyway, here are some thoughts that came to mind:

(This is my personal translation from the Hebrew. You won't find it like this in King James.)

Genesis 1:1-2

"When It began, Elohim created The Heaven and The Earth. And The Earth was unformed chaos and darkness on the face of the abyss; and the spirit of Elohim hovered on the surface of the water."

THE HIDDEN MEANINGS OF THE FIRST CREATION MYTH

1) The Ineffable One precedes Creation. He does not create. The Nameless One throws Himself outward, as Elohim, to begin the process of creation. Creation is a function of the plural Elohim, not the timeless unity of YHVH.

2a) Heaven and Earth come into being as an inseparable Duality. The Vertical precedes The Horizontal, but they come into being together as a packaged deal. Spirit and Flesh. Meaning and Form. Manifest and Unmanifest Creation. One cannot exist without the other.

2b) The Earth, the world of form, begins as a mere template infused with possibility. It is Tohu Va'Vohu. Formless, Void, Chaos. It is darkness, a boundless, formless abyss. There is no distinction or separation. God has not yet receded to the Heavens - he hovers over the Heavens and the Earth alike.

3) But then the Logos begins its work. Light. Goodness. Separation. Naming. Boundaries. Divine Withdrawl.

The stage is set.

4) Bang!!! The Cosmos blasts into existence and Day 6 arrives shortly. We are the Sixth Day. And we must choose. Will we rise in the morning, or in the evening?

10/10/2006 06:17:00 PM  
Anonymous stu said...

Lisa,

"Does a baby not have a soul and divine spark until his/her first independent breath?"

Perhaps the soul develops and grows much as the mind and body do.

"Is abortion the actual killing of a human with a soul or just the disposal of an unwanted body?"

I think maybe it is neither. A human fetus at any stage of development is always going to be much much more than an unwanted body. But an unborn, unviable fetus is also clearly different from an infant.

Symbiotic rights are extremely tricky to deal with.

10/10/2006 06:47:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Stu--

You are are right there in the sweet spot where Judaism meets Vedanta and it's all good. Abrahman linking, you might say.

10/10/2006 06:51:00 PM  
Blogger The Sanity Inspector said...

Communists have been overturning the order of the cosmos since, what, 1848?

It was in the wind earlier than that. Consider:

Communism...is absolutely contrary to the natural law itself, and, if once adopted, would utterly destroy the rights, property, and possessions of all men, and even society itself.
--Pope Pius IX, _Qui Pluribus_, 1846

10/10/2006 07:36:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Will, is that you again? Ha, Ha!

What's wrong with honking the Jewish horn once in a while, anyhow? Plus, wrong freaking Arabs did not invent algebra. The fundamental basis of modern mathematics had been laid down not hundreds but thousands of years before by Assyrians and Babylonians, who already knew of the concept of zero, of the Pythagorean Theorem, and of many, many other developments expropriated by Arabs/Muslims (see History of Babylonian Mathematics , Neugebauer).

You are correct in stating that we want quality, so please get a clue before commenting!

10/10/2006 08:40:00 PM  
Anonymous Connecticut Yankee said...

Apropos of Peter Singer, I was able to find an online file of the article published in 2002 in the New York Times by a disabled attorney who debated Singer at Princeton. It's called "Unspeakable Conversations":

He insists he doesn't want to kill me. He simply thinks it would have been better, all things considered, to have given my parents the option of killing the baby I once was, and to let other parents kill similar babies as they come along and thereby avoid the suffering that comes with lives like mine and satisfy the reasonable preferences of parents for a different kind of child. It has nothing to do with me. I should not feel threatened.

Whenever I try to wrap my head around his tight string of syllogisms, my brain gets so fried it's . . . almost fun. Mercy! It's like ''Alice in Wonderland.''

It is a chilly Monday in late March, just less than a year ago. I am at Princeton University. My host is Prof. Peter Singer, often called -- and not just by his book publicist -- the most influential philosopher of our time. He is the man who wants me dead. No, that's not at all fair. He wants to legalize the killing of certain babies who might come to be like me if allowed to live. He also says he believes that it should be lawful under some circumstances to kill, at any age, individuals with cognitive impairments so severe that he doesn't consider them ''persons.'' What does it take to be a person? Awareness of your own existence in time. The capacity to harbor preferences as to the future, including the preference for continuing to live.

At this stage of my life, he says, I am a person. However, as an infant, I wasn't. I, like all humans, was born without self-awareness. And eventually, assuming my brain finally gets so fried that I fall into that wonderland where self and other and present and past and future blur into one boundless, formless all or nothing, then I'll lose my personhood and therefore my right to life. Then, he says, my family and doctors might put me out of my misery, or out of my bliss or oblivion, and no one count it murder.

But speaking of horizontal people, the attorney claims to be an atheist-- so she isn't justifying her right to continued life on religious grounds. In that sense, it's a really sad article.

The full article is at http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/843688/posts

10/10/2006 08:45:00 PM  
Blogger amomaly said...

Anonymous,

I beg your pardon, but the "freaking Arabs" did NOT invent algebra. (Sorry, but this is a pet peeve of mine. I hate it when the multiculturalists rewrite history to make so-called "ethnic" peoples feel good about themselves and their culture. Why is the simple truth not good enough?)

It's true that the word "algebra" comes from the Arabic title of a treatise on the subject, but the Arabs did not invent it. The author of this treatise basically presented results from the Hindus, Greeks, and other cultures at that time. According to "An Introduction to the History of Mathmatics, 6th ed.," by Howard Eves, the algebra in this treatise shows little originality.

10/10/2006 09:02:00 PM  
Blogger amomaly said...

Oops! Thanks, lisa. Didn't see your post when I posted.

10/10/2006 09:06:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Abortion, two creations of man - the horizontal and the vertical, reincarnation or one shot at life and your done...

I think it's important here to note that the issues that we're talking about are divided by questions of insight and outsight - of subjective inner truths and objective outer knowledge.

We can discuss issues of archaeological records, and we can discuss spiritual truths - but not in the same way. Archaeological records are things out here among us that we can point to and measure, and those measurements are available to all who wish to investigate and discuss the matter.

Questions of the spirit are issues that all are able to experience, if they've climbed to those depths within (we've all seen those who trot the correct words out without understanding), and we can to some extent describe our experience and impressions of them, but we can't bring those impressions and sensations out for all to examine and measure and compare in the same way we can with those outer artifacts.

Was man ACTUALLY created twice, does the soul ACTUALLY incarnate once and only once... we can discuss these issues as vehicles for insight, but I don't think we can discuss them as matters of outward knowledge to be verified, catalogued and filed away as fact - we can't deal horizontaly with the vertical.

Matters of human life - does it start at conception or birth, is it legal or illegal or the woman’s right alone to choose or does the man or society have a say in the matter, and when is it proper to say it is a matter of law or choice... I think these questions miss a crucial and central point.

I've had the understanding that the Law is for arbitrating matters of outer knowledge concerning matters that are out here in the world for all to see and measure and judge.

The baby or fetus in question is not out here in the world for all to examine and measure and judge upon. We are able to take some measurements of its body, but that doesn't change the fact that it has not yet entered into the world of common reality. As the issue concerns actions or legislation within society, it is not yet a part of society here in the outer world, and so it seems to me that it is outside the province of the law.

It hasn't completed the journey from the inner world to the outer world, from the vertical to the horizontal, spiritually or physically - and until that is complete, it seems to me that it remains in the province of inner moral judgment alone.

The concept of an abortion, let alone the actual act, is an extremely personal, and crucial decision to make, that must be made in the context of that person’s life and no one else's - and without outside force or threat. I recognize that this is philosophically a very dangerous area, very simple to slip into Relativism. But I think without it dealing with clear objective facts which can be examined out here in the world, it should not be a province of the Law.

The law, as an instrument of governmental power, needs to be unambiguous, clear and well defined; its purpose is for preserving the rights of Individuals - independent, self-contained, Individuals, as they play out in societal interactions. A baby in the womb, it seems to me, doesn't yet fall under its sway. It is a part of, and a possession of the Mother, and she alone has the awesome responsibility and right of decision in the matter. And ultimately, the question of morality is her's alone to judge, in the context of her own life.

I'm not making any claims here to a final word on the subject, and I've got to admit to being a little uncomfortable about not being able to give a clearly defined answer - and I think that's also part of my point, without that ability, I don't feel right about behaving as if I do have it.

10/10/2006 09:22:00 PM  
Anonymous cousin dupree said...

I'm in charge now. Anonymous has been flushed from the cosmos. He needs to find one of those vaunted Muslim algebra websites or Korean science blogs that will welcome his low-watt insights. The rule here is simple: have a take and do not suck.

10/10/2006 09:39:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Anonymous said... "Exactly what evidence do you have that an artistic or scientific mind cannot and does not strive under a dictatorship. It is the everyday workingman that suffers under a dictatorship. Scientists and artists are elevated to positions of power and prestige."

uhh... what evidence? Umm, well, the USSR, North Korea, Iran, Iraq, etc, etc, etc.

"Scientists and artists are elevated to positions of power and prestige." sure, but do they discover anything? After 40 or 50 years of effort, and with the benefit of modern technology - North Korea hasn't been able to match the accomplishment of scientists in America working for a couple years with early 1940's technology. IF the North Koreans actually did test a nuke yesterday, its yield may not even have been comparable the the Hiroshima level 'quality' we produced 60+ years ago. And without the assistance of our traitors, the USSR would have fared no better.

The mind needs freedom to creatively exercise its free will, people as a society need to be free, in order for those with a true flair and desire to pursue scientific discovery to be able to choose the path of scientific discovery. I wonder how many people who could have been ground breaking geniuses in Physics, are hand plowing fields in North Korea right now - or dead and buried beneath them.

"Intellectuals are sometimes thought of as leading the charge for individual freedom," yeah, they like to be thought of as leading the charge - but as a rule of thumb, those who like to be thought of as being something - usually aren't.

10/10/2006 09:42:00 PM  
Anonymous tsebring said...

Anonymous,
your post stating that North Korea's aspirations for regional power are "just as legitimate as ours" smacks of the Moral Equivalency ideology that the left uses to make the US look bad and our enemies look good, or make us both look the same. First of all, who says the US has any aspirations of hegemony? Only the Cindy Sheehan/Michael Moore wing of the Democratic Party believes that. Actually,the US has divested itself of territory since the 70's (The Canal Zone, The Marshall Islands,the Gilbert and Ellice islands, and parts of Micronesia), and, unlike the Soviets, eventually handed back territory taken from the Japanese in WWII that actually belonged to them before the war. Though we have had troop presences in places like Vietnam, Grenada, Haiti, and Panama, we have never permanently occupied any foreign territory with the purpose of establishing a world empire with ourselves as the capital, like the Communists have. Though we took territory in the Spanish American war (admittedly a war of questionable legitimacy), we eventually granted Cuba and the Phillipines independence, and stayed in Puerto Rico because the Puerto Ricans wished us to. The Soviets only loosened their long and iron grip on their possesions when the collapse of Communism and the rise of rebellions forced them to.

Secondly, perhaps you have not read accounts of the unspeakable horrors of the concentration camps in North Korea, or know how they treated our prisoners in the Korean War. Kim's wish is that all his enemies would be reduced to radioactive ash. That means us, first and foremost.Their aims are far from legitimate; they want to see us fry, and, if they can't do it themselves, they will arm other nations and terrorist organizations that can. The belief that Kim just wants to have lebenstraum (Hitler's phrase)and his fair share of the big pie is like Chamberlain's belief that Hitler just wanted the Sudetenland, and then he would be all happy and nice, and that we would have peace in our time. It's a pacifistic utopian fantasy; one that endangers all of us if we let it infect us.

And I myself reserve the right to call anyone that treats his own people like stockyard hogs or openly advocates wiping out an entire nation "halfway between man and beast". It may be true that not every single North Korean or Iranian is like that, but they aren't the ones in power, are they? We can't be paralyzed by the liberal "everyone or no one" dogma; it didn't stop us in WWII.

10/10/2006 09:48:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Gagdad points out that Communists have been overturning the order of the cosmos since 1848, and the The Sanity Inspector pointed out that Pope Pius IX, outed them as early as 1846, but it goes back even farther than that.

Consider Sparta - shortly after solidifying on their slave holding, communistic militaristic society - alone among the Greeks, the intellectual life died and never resuscitated. And if it weren't for Alcibiades, an Athenian turncoat, they wouldn't have prevailed in the Peloponnesian War. And when their physical might was challenged on their own territory by Epaminondas (sp?!) of Thebes defeating them in front of their slaves, and freeing them, the Spartan 'culture' vanished utterly from history.

Another case in point are the American Pilgrims in the early 1600's. They tried what they thought would be true biblical living - communism, no private property, all working for all (and so for none), and they were nearly wiped out. It wasn't until Bradford privatized all the property, that they suddenly prospered and flourished.

There are always fools, usually self appointed Intellectual fools, who think that 'people' are only able to handle freedom as they are forced to understand and abide what they are told is free, hello Rousseau. But Freedom is a requirement of creativity - vertically and horizontally. The good news is that Reality is patient and willing to support those who are willing to honestly see it, and eventually it will win out. The bad news is that eventually can be a really long long time.

10/10/2006 10:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Will said...

Ain't me, Lisa. I'm over here having a bad reaction to a flu shot.

10/10/2006 10:19:00 PM  
Anonymous Will said...

Anyway, the Ahrimanic has been around since the Garden got spoiled.

Cawm-nism, in my view, is just its most concrete declaration.

I must be hallucinating. I could have sworn somebody just posted a "moral equivalence" defense of N Korea . . .

Say, has anybody noticed that the word verification letters often spell out the names of space aliens?

10/10/2006 10:35:00 PM  
Anonymous looptloop said...

As far as the argument for reincarnation goes...does anyone have opinions on the likes of Dr. Ian Stevenson trying to explore the potential phenomenon in as scientific manner as possible (having come up with some fairly compelling info)?

10/10/2006 10:43:00 PM  
Anonymous tsebring said...

Van,
I'm going to take a real dangerous chance here and disagree with you on the abortion question, and attempt to explain the best I can why that is. You are one of the greatest troll-killers on this blog (your comebacks to the infamous Nagarganja were great), and your skill at intellectual debate is formidable, but I feel I must have my say here.

The laws of the US (and for Europe and most of the world, for that matter) are based on the Judeo-Christian tradition of ethics and moral behavior, as I believe it was the founding fathers' wish that they be. And one of those laws happens to be the prohibition against murder, that being the taking of a life for no reason. This also happens to be one of the Ten Commandments (I don't remember which one) that the Hebrew Torah spells out in a way that is nothing if not clear: "Thou shalt not murder". Both Judaism and Christianity share that set of God-given laws as central doctrines. The real connection between the spiritual and earthly natures of that one commandment can't be ignored; it is both US law and God's Law. The Founding Fathers chose to make that connection when drafting our Constitution, while being careful to maintain the true separation of Church and State (not the prohibition of religion that the ACLU wants).

Whether the spirit and soul inhabit a person at conception or birth becomes irrelevant; whether the person even has a spirit or soul becomes irrelevant. The relevant fact is that a person, at conception, contains all the genetic material that will eventually become a totally unique human, with no person being exactly like that one. It's not what that dime-sized embryo is now that we should be concerned about, but what it is destined to be. If we abort an embryo or fetus before it is born, we are ending a life that is now, but we are also ending a life that will be. We aren't killing an adult, but we are killing a future adult, same as if we killed a baby or a child. If we can't be concerned about a human because they have not yet reached a state of self-awareness, then why not kill a severely retarded person, who never reached that state, as Mr. Singer would have us do? And how does the fact that a fetus is not outside the womb yet make it outside the realm of reality, and therefore outside the realm of the law? The fact that it is not self-aware yet and "vertical" yet does not make it any less alive; and besides, it will eventually BECOME vertical, if allowed to live the life that it is predestined to live. As a spiritual seeker, I find myself concerned not just with the now, but with the future, both for me and for my fellow humans, born and unborn. I take to heart the prayer that asks God to help me change what can be changed, accept what can't, and be given wisdom to know the difference. It is this attempt to understand and embrace the future, within the context of the now, that drives my views on this subject, as well as my Christian faith (which I understand that all do not share).

Though I generally believe in severe limits on the power of government to interfere in our private lives, in this case I make an exception, strictly because it involves the consistent upholding of one of the most important laws of this country. Though I respect my fellow citizens' right to disagree with my views on this subject, I can't dismiss it as an irrelevant distraction. To me, it's more than just "legislating morality"; its legislating existing legislation, as well as protecting our rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Van, I realize that I have used some hyperbole to illustrate the point, but I hope that it did not get lost. I am not one of those fanatics who shout in the street, block clinics, and blow them up; neither do I vote for a politician on this issue alone (they usually don't deliver anyway). I simply try to live as I believe and take the issue to heart and prayer when given the chance. All this being said, though laws may help curb some abortions, the ultimate answer is really better families, better education, and better citizenship, all of which are in diminishing supply right now.

10/10/2006 11:04:00 PM  
Anonymous tsebring said...

Van, you are right on about the death of freedom in any communistic society, religious or secular.

Some more about religious communism in America:
It has always failed when it was attempted. The Pilgrims were only the beginning. Groups like the Shakers, the Moravians, the Hutterites and the Amana Colonies all tried it at some point, and either abandoned it or allowed it to destroy them. The hippies tried it, and it mostly failed for them, too. I believe that the Moonies, Hare Krishnas, and the Bagwan Shree Rajneesh cult all pracice it as well (it killed the Rajneesh group).

Actually, the first Christians to try living in common were the original Jerusalem church that came about that famous Pentecost day. They adopted it because they had to; most of the 3,000 who spontaneously came to Christ there were travelers from somewhere else, there for the Passover and Pentecost feasts, and had left most of their posessions at home. This is why Peter had to appoint deacons to fairly distribute food, becase there were simply so many (by the time the persecutions of Saul started, they were up to much more than 3,000).
The apostles, when they raised up later churches, NEVER made living in common a requirement for church life. Jerusalem was the only church known to have practiced it.

Also, in my own church, there is a family who are refugees from a communal church in rural New Hampshire. They had to leave due to, guess what? The oppressive authority structure that arose as a necessity for keeping such an unnatural arrangement going. I have heard other stories from believers who fled communal churches, and it's always for that reason. Communism, both in religious and secular settings, is so unnatural to mankind's God given need to create, prosper and achieve, that a tyranny becomes necessary just to sustain it and keep all the poor unenlightened masses in line. Of course, if the entity is a nation, that can lead to wholesale slaughter.

10/10/2006 11:34:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Sorry to hear you are feeling ill, Will. Hope you feel better. I guess it is that time of year for flu shots already, how time flies...

10/11/2006 12:20:00 AM  
Anonymous Will said...

I'm OK, Lisa, thanks. I really did get a flu shot, but mostly I'm exhausted from one of those weirdly out-of-the-blue manic weeks. Nothing 36 hours straight sleep can't cure.

10/11/2006 01:59:00 AM  
Blogger jw said...

Bob: I think you go just little too far. Free and independant inquiry clearly fixes scientific errors MUCH faster. I think that's about all that can be said about it, given the evidence.

Also, for an animal to be "human" the scientist would need a valid Turing Test pass ... I do not believe there ever has been a pass. The highest number of useable "words" in an animal --that I've ever heard of-- is in the low hundreds. You'd need more than 800, I would think, to get a Turing pass.

10/11/2006 03:18:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

JW--

The average visit to a doctor actually did harm to the patient until the emergence of modern medicine in the mid to late 19th century. Humankind in general was absolutely stagnant until the discovery of the scientific method. It makes no sense to say that free inquity only fixes errors faster, when its absence meant that problems were never fixed at all for the vast majority of human cultures down through history.

10/11/2006 06:10:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

tsebring,
I'm out of my Troll killer role on this matter, I have a sense of the situation, but I honestly don't have a solid decision to defend. This a question that hits close to home & I don't feel all that comfortable arguing about. My Wife & I had planned to work for at least 2 years after getting married before having kids, God had a little snicker at our plans, and we were faced with the reality of having just moved to a state where we knew NOBODY, we had no money, and my resume consisted of 10 years of undocumented work as a bassist in a band.

Neither of us, however, could get past the idea that IT was going to be a person. We couldn't perform the mental trick of seeing it as just protoplasm that had no future. We also knew that we'd both, forever onwards, on seeing a child of the right age - wonder what if... and other thoughts as well. There was no way we could seriously consider getting an abortion. And now, 18 years later, that little bit of protoplasm could easily body slam me for fun.

With our daughter 11 years later, some @#$!&*# quack-assed Hospital administrator-had-been-'doctor' had read a paper on some latest buss theories about detecting birth defects from the first sonogram... and so he'd been poking his nose into all the sonograms, pushing the nurses & tech's out of the way to look for his buzz measurement... and with our boys out in the hall, and my wife & I looking at this squirming bundle of joy to be displayed on the screen ME:"Is that her head?", NURSE:"um, no, I believe that's her foot", ME:"Ah", this @#$! looks at the measurements, pushes the nurse aside and tells us that our baby is going to be a downs syndrome child and we should consider having an abortion.

Shattered, horrified... letters & words don't do it. The same discussion played out, and this time with reluctance, the same decision, no - can't do it. Well it turned out that the @#$!&*# quack-assed [insert your foulest curse here] was also an idiot and a fool, and was proven wrong shortly afterwards. And we got his butt canned & driven out of the hospital and state. She was born and is just fine.

But that thought... we couldn't do it. But that thought, those decisions, that struggle over choosing what you think is morally right - if someone had tried to wave a statute in our faces and say we had to do, or not do the 'proceedure' - I may not have been capable of ok'ing an abortion, but Murder would have been just A-OK by me.

The point is... I don't have an answer on it - I can't see the protoplasm separate from what it develops into, every instinct shrieks out that it is wrong... but it also is no damn place for the Gov't to be involved in. It just seems to me that a moral decision of such magnitutde, forced & determined for you, would be a double crime, and destroy the Morality all around.

10/11/2006 06:11:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Will said..."Say, has anybody noticed that the word verification letters often spell out the names of space aliens?"

You been getting into your kitties cat nip again?

10/11/2006 06:15:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Gagdad,
I hadn't looked at the two Genesis stories in that way before, always stumped me why they'd keep two versions, possibly pre & post babylonian exile, in the OT. Me and my horizontal analysis... that open (opens? ever wonder where 'opens' opens up (up?) to?) up a lot of interesting avenues to explore.

Thanks again for the 3-D (4-D?) compass pointers.

10/11/2006 06:21:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

OMG - the verification letters ARE space alien names!

10/11/2006 06:21:00 AM  
Anonymous stu said...

Tsebring said:

"We aren't killing an adult, but we are killing a future adult, same as if we killed a baby or a child."

I think if you concede the difference between an adult and a potential adult, than you must also concede a difference between killing an adult and killing a potential adult.

Law exists to preserve our God-given rights. Mother's rights and fetus' rights.

The question is: When do the fetus' rights emerge and outweigh the rights of its host? And is it wise to legislate a distinct line?

10/11/2006 08:14:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Van,
I am so glad that things turned out OK for you and your family, and that that pseudo-doctor got his (although he is unfortunately probably practicing elsewhere). Abortion is definitely an issue fraught with lots of raw emotions on both sides of the fence, and I appreciate that fact. Though I don't wish pain on anyone (except mabybe bin Laden, Armageddonijad, and their ilk), I am reassured that the decision was one that gave you such pause. I have a lot of trouble with those who make the decision to abort cavalierly, with little or no hesitation, like they are taking out the trash or something. You obviously don't fit that category. I also have trouble with those who come across like SNL's Church Lady on the other side, displaying no sensitivity to those who struggle with it. As far as they're concerned, they're right; end of story.

As for the issue of whether it should be a matter for law, I have made my case, and you have made yours, which is at least as good as mine if not better; let us then agree to disagree on it and leave it at that. I suppose it could be said that a good compromise would be to let the states decide, giving people an alternative who believe either way.

Let it also be said that, just because I am against abortion, I definitely do not support intimidation of abortion patients, blowing up of clinics, or murder of doctors, any more than I support the mayhem and destruction of Earth First because I am an environmentalist (a "crunchy con", I suppose). We are a democracy, not a thugocracy, and, as such, we have the ability to vote according to our consciences without resorting to SDS and Hamas tactics. God Bless America.

10/11/2006 08:15:00 AM  
Anonymous tsebring said...

Van,
not only are the verification letters alien names (I am waiting for Beldar to come up), but they NEVER WORK THE FIRST TIME YOU SUBMIT THEM! Bob, why is that?

10/11/2006 08:18:00 AM  
Anonymous stu said...

Please replace the world "adult" with "human."

Someone will inevitably misread the previous statement and assume that I am condoning infanticide or the killing the mentally retarded.

10/11/2006 08:20:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

tsebring,
I'd note that the founders who were all well versed in the classics, based their POLITICAL framework on Greco-Roman-Anglo models, not Judeo-Christian traditions (stick with me), taking into acccount and analysis an amazing sweep of history, and with extensive debate amongst themselves, they devised an amazing and concise framework for civil law. What they sought to creat was a framework for ethical people to live and thrive, and to work out disagreements amongst themselves in a civil manner. They provided for laws to deal with those unethical individuals, groups and foriegn entities who might seek to tread on the rights of others, and most importantly the constitution was designed to restrain the government from becoming either an unethical, OR an ethical actor in civil life - or at least as little as they could see being possible.

James Madison, the acknowledged Father of the constitution, when being presented with a bill to provide relief to refugees said (words to the effect of) "I find myself unable to put my finger on the line of the constitution that authorizes taking money from the citizens in order to benefit another group of people!", and dismissed it.

The Founders true genius was to realize that Ethical behavior, and here they were most certainly heavily influenced by Judeo-Christian mores, was the responsibility of the People themselves, they understood that Gov't - and by that they meant the distant repository of force and upholder of Law - if it were to become an actor in day to day ethical behavior, would be destructive to those ends.

Local State little "L" law & township regulations were where the customs of the local people might find some expression in law and standards - but not in big "G" Gov't.

10/11/2006 08:35:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

stu said...
"Please replace the world "adult" with "human."

Someone will inevitably misread the previous statement and assume that I am condoning infanticide or the killing the mentally retarded. "

... or moonbats.

10/11/2006 08:35:00 AM  
Anonymous danny said...

lisa said "Does a baby not have a soul and divine spark until his/her first independent breath?"

Aristotle: "the thing is alive if, for instance, there is intellect or perception or spatial movement connected with nourishment and growth and decay."

The key word for this discussion in Aristotle's definition is "growth". The moment one cell divides into two, growth is taking place, and the thing is alive, whether it be an acorn or a human egg. Birth and breath are simply stages of development. I would argue this is "objective outer knowledge" that van speaks of.

As for a soul, this can only be speculation or "subjective inner truth". But I personally believe anything that is alive has a soul, which can only be created by God, and that the maturation of the soul proceeds in tandem with the growth and maturation of its biological host. As the genetic and biological complexity of the host, determined by its DNA, increases, so does the extent of development of, and demands on, its soul.

Take a simple unicellular life. Its perfection is simply to be a perfect cell and, as is the case with most unicellular life, to achieve growth by dividing itself. The demand on its soul is small: develop into the perfect cell and then divide and be annihilated.

The tree is a complex form of plant life; its soul must guide its complex biological system to the perfect state of maturity, guiding the growth of roots and branches to best advantage for exploiting energy from the sun and the moisture and nourishment from the soil.

When we come to the complex biological life forms of birds and mammals, the soul must manage a sentient organism with a very complicated pattern of existence. This soul has consciousness and a level of intellect and reasoning. It must manage its biological host through the complexities of gestating, birthing, nourishing, rearing and teaching the young; through the gathering of, or hunting for, food, and storing of the food for later use; through seeking or building of shelter against the elements.

Man, too, is a mammal, so, in order to meet the basic needs common to mammals, the soul of man must also strive for the attainment of perfection of its human host. However, man's soul is a very special exnihilated creation; its perfection culminates in self-consciousness, which is not the case for other mammals whose souls have only consciousness. This self-consciousness is what sets man apart from all other living things.

So to answer your question, I believe the soul is present at the moment of life, otherwise there would be no life.

10/11/2006 08:39:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

By the way, an excellent presentation of the Founders researching, debating and writing the Constitution, and a very readable book (and if you can get the original audiobook, it was very well done), is "Miracle At Philadelphia: The Story of the Constitutional Convention May - September 1787" by Catherine Drinker Bowen.

10/11/2006 08:41:00 AM  
Anonymous joseph said...

Of course, one of the huge problems of unfettered scientific inquiry is the nuclear bomb, the most diabolic example of human ingenuity thus far devised. Odd that so many people argue that this is a good thing. Science is always a handmaiden to some ideology. The ideology that would lead to the invention of the nuclear weapon is that there are simply some humans less important than other humans.

10/11/2006 02:45:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Joseph said..."Science is always a handmaiden to some ideology. The ideology that would lead to the invention of the nuclear weapon is that there are simply some humans less important than other humans. "

...Or that there are some humans worth defending against other humans.

Aside from the scope of people killed, how is it different from a gun, or a club, or a rock? Some will use it as a defensive weapon, some as an offensive weapon. The ideology that led to the invention of the nuclear weapon was that All men are created equal - and those who wish to challenge that deserve, and will receive, death and destruction on a massive scale.

It is largely what allowed us to have 40 years of Cold War instead of a full scale hot WWIII.

We'll see what comes next, but it won't be because of science or the American ideology that led to the invention of the nuclear weapon (in response to an agressive evil on a worldwide scale).

10/11/2006 04:08:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10/11/2006 06:57:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Danny,
An interesting comment, thanks.

"... its perfection culminates in self-consciousness, which is not the case for other mammals whose souls have only consciousness." I'm not so sure that the higher mammals don't have self consciousness, but certainly theirs is rudimentary in comparison to Human self consciousness, lacking in the capacity to focus and maintain complex conscious purposes over time, reasoning, etc, and I suspect the Vertical conceptual depths are limited for them, if available at all.

I liked your analogy of the soul seeking to perfect the biological unit, be it a single cell, or a complex mammal.

After reading your comment, the image that came to my mind was that of the Soul, the 'life' in life, seeking to fill the biological container as breath does a balloon, mutually filling and expanding, or deflating and contracting, within the limits of the container's structure.

As consciousness appears, that expansion would be influenced and determined by the existence of conscious will in the structure, and the interaction between structure and spirit as directed by that conscious will, draws in volume from the Vertical depths - or lets it leak out.

In this analogy, the horizontal world might be limited to view these balloons without spiritual sight, but by physical weight as with a scale. Measured in this way one balloon as compared to another by weight would not seem to vary or change whether it is inflated to the size of an apple or a watermelon, but to the spiritual eye, the large Souls would stand out in firmness and size, far above the rest.

10/11/2006 06:58:00 PM  
Anonymous joseph said...

The primary difference in the nuclear weapon, and why, no nation, up to this point has wanted to use it since our nation did, is that it is completely indiscriminate in separating combatants from non-combatants in warfare. Warfare has always had an ethic, whether followed or not. The nuclear weapon breaks every possible ethic of war. Civilians are never to be attacked.

I am NOT suggesting its invention stems from American ideology, but an entirely atheistic ideology, one that believes everything that can be thought of, no matter what its outcome, should be created. All religious people agree that some things simply should not exist. I am with Richard Luger. The weapon should be universally destroyed. It is, properly speaking, a Satanic invention. Not unlike Communism being a Satanic philosophy.
The idea that it prevented a war with the Soviets is nonsense. It was the basis of the Cold War, since our only fear of the Soviet menace could possibly be the fact that they gained access to the weapon. Other than weapons, they were a third world country, one that we could have easily defeated, had they attempted to attack us (minus nuclear weapons). I might add that the Islamist problem is only a major problem due to weapons technology. They are the first peoples to gain access or possible access to these weapons who will not have fear of using them. Indeed, the weapon finally found a people perfectly suited to it.

10/11/2006 11:30:00 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Danny,

This thread may be dead by now, but I have a question for you. Is it okay to kill cancer or a virus in your body? That is growth and life according to your definition. I would like to add that this growth and breath must be independent of any other human. In that case my original quesion still holds merit. There are really no right or wrong answers. The easist way to avoid unwanted pregnancy and abortion is of course to not get pregnant. Very easy today with modern medicine, but some people always need some kind of drama in their lives!

10/12/2006 08:47:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

"Warfare has always had an ethic, whether followed or not" and in the outset of WWII, it was not being followed, the Nazi's (the blitz) and the Japanese (Nanking). At the time it was created and used, it averted the certain tens of thousands of death on our side alone - which I think well justified its use.

There is much point-counterpoint that can be made about nuclear weapons and the USA vs USSR - had leftists not leaked the knowledge, the USSR would almost certainly collapsed on its own within a single decade of WWII, rather than five. But again, the fact that the weapons did exist among Western powers, and wannabe Western-like powers, insured that they wouldn't be used - or at least heavily weighted the odds in the favor of their not being used.

"The nuclear weapon breaks every possible ethic of war. Civilians are never to be attacked. “It’s a nice thought, but other than isolated moments in modern history, it has never been the case. Those in the business of seeking power for powers sake, have never cared about civilians, go back as far as you like in history, and you will find the civilian population being either slaughtered on conquest, or sold off into slavery. Whatever pretensions to religious belief they may have made, the act of seeking power for powers sake is a sure sign that the Vertical has already been disintegrated from the horizontal, and any appearance of ethical behavior they might display, you can be assured that it is for appearances only.

"I am NOT suggesting its invention stems from American ideology, but an entirely atheistic ideology, one that believes everything that can be thought of, no matter what its outcome, should be created."

The problem of science and technology is that once created - its true reality, the knowledge of how to create it, is extremely portable, all you need is a head capable of storing it. We didn't seek to create such a weapon, but when a number of physicists realized that one of the consequences of the new knowledge of the atom was such a weapon, and that the Nazi's knew it too... like Pandora's box, once you peak inside there's no stopping the contents from flying out - and hoping it will go away is a losing proposition all around.

Perhaps the lessons that we should have learned from the cold war, are that the idea of "the enemy of your enemy is your friend" as with the Allies and the USSR, really means that the enemy of your enemy is one who will be in an excellent position to cut your throat when you trustingly turn your back on them.

That, and an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. When Hitler first began moving on his neighbors, the West appeased in, thinking of the thousands of lives that might have been lost in an altercation with the Nazi's, and so insured that millions instead would die. Patton saw the necessity of ending the remaining totalitarian menace at the close of WWII, he was rebuked and ignored. Ignoring that advice gave the USSR the opportunity to get the know how to make a bomb. Not risking tens of thousands of lives in attacking at the moment they showed they had it, ensured that thousands would be created and the entire worlds population being put at risk.

And that standing by and allowing the power crazed to claim a country, of any size, thinking that they aren't a direct threat to you now, only allows them to become one later. As we are discovering with Korea and Iran, and... there are plenty of others around to fill in the blanks with.

Joseph, I know what you're saying, and I wish that the world we lived in was one that would recognize such dangers and stear safely away. But the world we live in is not a safe world. Playing by the Marquis of Queensbury rules when your opponent is packing a knife because he knows you won't, is folly and suicide. It seems to me that when the Good fails to recognize what the Evil are capable of, and does not take the necessary precautions to defend against them, then they are negligent in their responsibilities and enable the Evil to prosper.

10/12/2006 08:53:00 AM  
Anonymous joseph said...

Van,
I am not very capable of making myself understood. Some of the posts were speaking of the nuclear bomb as an example of the unqualified "good" of an independent and unfettered science. But, in my opinion, if you examine the thing, in itself, and not in the context of the world political situation, the nuclear bomb is an unqualified evil. Why? Because its design (not just its use) violates universal moral principles. It is designed to kill everyone in an area, a very large area, indiscriminately. Warfare is not designed as such. So, I am speaking of principles, not practices.
I am quite aware that it is a political and scientific reality that cannot be avoided, and I was not speaking in the slightest about its use in Japan.
Imagine, however, a world without it for a moment. This is why I am never, ever, in favor of a so-called unfettered science and technology. The scientists believe that they have no ideology. That is the worst ideology imaginable.
I agree whole-heartedly with your view that we should not espouse the idea that the enemy of your enemy is your friend, as we did in WWII. We followed the same exact idea in Afghanistan in the 80's, and helped to create an armed monster that came back to attack us several years later.

10/12/2006 09:17:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Joseph said...
"The scientists believe that they have no ideology. That is the worst ideology imaginable."

That much we can definitely agree on.

10/12/2006 04:26:00 PM  
Blogger ximeze said...

Test

10/19/2006 09:29:00 PM  
Blogger AussieJules said...

Love your blog, brings out hidden , half articulated thoughts I have re the weirdness of the left, political correctedness . Also re the sacred nature of man.
makes me stronger and more lucid.

10/20/2006 04:49:00 AM  
Blogger DWPittelli said...

I agree with much of your post. However, I don’t think that multiculturalists and other leftist “ists” deny all truth or the good. They are opposed to, for example, the subjugation and violence against women. It’s just that they worship the victimhood that comes from living in a backward or third-world society, to the extent of absolving the victims of all moral responsibility (i.e., they treaty them like infants). They also worship the nobility that comes from opposing our own, deeply corrupt society. A third-world man or nation can thus be criticized, theoretically, for wife-beating or clitoridectomy, but such criticism should be no more severe than that leveled for the excesses of a three-year-old, or of a WWII French resistance leader.

10/20/2006 04:49:00 AM  
Blogger DWPittelli said...

oops! wrong post

10/20/2006 04:50:00 AM  

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