Who Controls the Past Defines the Normal, Who Defines the Normal Controls the Present (5.03.09)
But who controls the present also controls what is defined as "normal." Therefore, since leftists have taken over various institutions in the last 30-40 years -- the media, academia, Hollywood, etc. -- they have been engaged in the unyielding project of redefining normalcy -- of defining deviancy downward -- so that the abnormal appears normal and the normal abnormal. Their radical skepticism throws out all standards and categories as arbitrary and subjective, motivated simply by the desire to dominate, control, and oppress.
Therefore, to believe things as banal as "the man should be the head of the household" or "marriage consists of a man and a woman" is to expose oneself to ridicule by people who do not know what normal is -- nor do they want to know. (To be perfectly accurate, they unconsciously know, as all humans must, but they are in a state of rebellion against this knowledge, a rebellion which must be constantly renewed in order to stay one step ahead of the judgment of their conscience -- which they generally project into conservatives and then feel "persecuted" by them.)
Almost every "liberation" group of the left insists that their particular aberration be considered normal, whether it is homosexual activists, radical feminists, the "transgendered," etc. Teaching that there is a normal human condition is considered by these people to be the quintessence of tyranny and oppression. Being that the left does indeed "control the present," so to speak, all textbooks must be rewritten in order to make the abnormal appear normal, and to attack and undermine our intuitive understanding of what is normal. This is one of the big reasons why people homeschool their children, because they don't want them to internalize such abnormality at a young age, since it can be very difficult to undo this programming later in life.
Again, as I mentioned yesterday, I passively accepted a lot of this leftist brainwashing when I was younger, and it has been on ongoing adventure in liberation to cast it off bit by bit and regain my normalcy. Which, of course, would be considered very, very abnormal by anyone on the left, such as the Women's Aberration Movement.
Yesterday, someone made a valid point that my "temporocentrism," so to speak, causes me to overemphasize the importance of the 1960s. There is undoubtedly some truth in this, as it is difficult to avoid being a creature of one's time. In fact, a big part of being a "finished" human being is to transcend your time by becoming a mode of the universal -- which is another way of saying "normal." For, as I shall elaborate below, a normal man is a vertical man -- or what Schuon called pontifical man. The only alternative is to be a horizontal man, which is to say, not a man at all. Doing so is to cash in your manhood in favor of being a beast in human form.
If there is a vertical dimension proper to man, then it means ipso facto that we live in a hierarchical cosmos that is conditioned from top to bottom. This is why it is simply a truism that all attacks on religion are in the end an attack on mind itself -- and therefore on man. Hierarchy is the one thing that absolutely cannot be tolerated by the totolerantarian left. Religion must be attacked and scorned, for it teaches that there are values that are intrinsic to humans, and that some ways of living, being, and thinking are better then others. Ultimately, the divine conscience -- that which distinguishes between right and wrong, good and evil -- must be disabled. For example, children are taught "values clarification" instead of straightforward rules of right and wrong. They are literally indoctrinated into an anti-religion that sets itself in opposition to the true and universal one.
But for the nihilistic leftist flatlander -- and this cannot be emphasized enough -- the only abnormal person is the person who insists that some things are intrinsically abnormal. I believe it is a fact that of all professional groups, psychologists are the most liberal, which is to say, horizontalized. There is no human behavior so bizarre that one cannot attend a continuing education seminar on its virtues. (I had been saving an illustrative flier for an occasion such as this, but I think I must have recycled it.)
This explain the ubiquitous "inverted hypocrisy" of the psychological left. Although this type of boundary-less person superficially appears to be the most “liberated," they are desperately in need of an "external center" to rebel against. Like a child, they are most in need of that which they most vociferously and compulsively protest against. Since they are chaotic souls with no center, they gain a spurious sense of internal coherence by rubbing up against, or breaking through, a boundary. Thus, the transgression eventually takes on a wearily compulsive quality. They rapidly become caricatures of themselves, a pattern constantly seen in our trolls.
As Richard Weaver wrote in Ideas Have Consequences, forms are the ladder of ascent: "Every group regarding itself as emancipated is convinced its predecessors were fearful of reality, looking upon veils of decency as obstructions that it will strip aside. But behind the veils is a reality of such commonplace that it is merely knowledge of death." The obliteration of vertical degree creates a tyrannical flatland which is death to the soul and its spiritual evolution. This is why leftists are always mindlessly rebellious, anti-authority, and radically "democratic" (when it is convenient), and why their movement has literally "gone nowhere" -- for its own assumptions mandate that there is nowhere else for it to go but into further nothingness, something demonstrated on a daily basis by its more undisguised voices, such as a dailykos or huffingandpissed.
I'm having a very trying morning. You-know-who woke up before I even finished my coffee, and I have to get ready for work shortly. Therefore, some reworked past material, which you may or may not have already read, but which touches on the question of normalcy:
Only man -- and the cosmos coursing through him -- is a becoming of what he is through time, a journey from what “we are not yet to what we already are,” from the potential of the mirror to the fulfillment of the image. We have a simple word for man -- or used to, anyway, before leftists decided that it was oppressively sexist -- but we must never forget that man is not man in the way that matter is matter, for only man has the task and vocation of becoming what he is.
Perhaps this is the greatest divide between secular materialists and religious idealists, for the latter regard man’s life as an irreducible ought grounded in transcendence, instead of a mere is rooted in dead matter. Man is the only thing that ought, which immediately takes him out of the realm of both is and of mere things. For to do as you ought is to both transcend and to find yourself. It is also to be a normal human being.
But what ought we do or be or know or become?
Spirituality is the science of discovering and becoming what we already are. And what we are is an arrow shot from the stream of time into the heart of eternity. Or is it the reverse?
It is both. For “man is true to himself only when he is stretching forth -- in hope -- toward a fulfillment that cannot be reached in his bodily existence” (Pieper).
In the words of Schuon, the devil is "the humanized personification -- humanized on contact with man -- of the subversive aspect of the centrifugal existential power; not the personification of this power in so far as its mission is positively to manifest Divine Possibility." In other words, the Absolute, insofar as it deploys itself in time and space (which it does "inevitably"), radiates from a cosmic center to the periphery, somewhat like a series of concentric circles with God at the center. God's energies are like radii emanating from the center outward, while the different concentric circles are the various levels of being, or the cosmic hierarchy.
Therefore, although everything is ultimately God, not everything is equally God. The idea that everything is equally God leads to pantheism, which is an indiscriminate flatland philosophy no more sophisticated than the bonehead atheism of a Christopher Hitchens or Sam Harris. It is logically equivalent to saying everything is not God. Or one might simply say "everything," and therefore "nothing" -- it doesn't matter, or mind, for that matter. In any event, nothing is that simple, let alone everything, let further alone the Divine Nothing-Everything at the center of it all.
Now ultimately, everything "is God" in some sense, but God is not the sum total of everything. Things necessarily vary in their proximity to God. Furthermore, there is movement toward God. We call this "evolution," but we should probably come up with a different term -- perhaps Adam & Evolution -- so as to not confuse it with mere natural selection, which reduces the transcosmic fact of evolution toward theosis to a random and mechanical process -- a monstrous philosophy which "cannot be."
And like the cosmic center of which it is a mirror, the individual center has a natural tendency to radiate outward and lose itself in the playful phenomena of its own creation. However, in its properly balanced way, this radiation leads to further centration, not dissipation. For example, when we love what is beautiful, we identify the soul's "within" by locating it in the without, which has effect of strengthening our central being. Conversely, if we love that which is ugly or "know" what is false, this has the effect of diminishing our center -- which, at the same time, necessarily pulls us further from God, the cosmic center.
The periphery must be -- i.e., there must be things that are more or less distant from God -- but this does not mean that they need be evil. Nevertheless, as Schuon implies, the divine radiation results in "cosmic interstices," so to speak, where evil and falsehood enter the picture. This is where the soul cancers arise and take root. It is one of the inevitable even though unsanctioned possibilities of the Divine radiation, somewhat like an existential blood clot. Truth flows. The lie is a static lump in your head.
The cosmos is permeated with arteries that carry "oxidized" energies away from God and veins through which creation returns to its source. Only human beings may partake of this circulatory system in a conscious way, and become co-partners in the divine plan. It's an offer we can and do refuse, although people in their left mind commonly do. On the one hand, creation is already "perfect," being that it is a metaphysically necessary and unnarcissary objectification of God. Nevertheless, by virtue of not being God, it cannot be perfect, but can only "become" perfect through man's conscious participation.
Or let us say that perfection is only a possibility because it is woven into the very warp and woof of creation. If it weren't, we wouldn't even have the word. Nor would we have the words for truth and beauty if they weren't coursing through the arteries of existence as divine possibilities. Truth is either "invented" or it is "discovered." If invented, then it is not true. If discovered, then it is of God -- or at least underwritten by God, the Absolute.
Today we find ourselves in a struggle of truly cosmic proportions between forces representing the human personification of the centrifugal existential power -- which is a very real, even if derivative and parasitic, power -- and those representing the center (or evolutionary return to the center).
In short, the cosmic-political battle in which we are engaged is ultimately between forces who deny hierarchy and those who affirm it; and those who drunkenly ride the centrifugal waves to the periphery, vs. those who soberly partake of the centripetal return. Importantly, those who deny hierarchy do so -- either consciously or unconsciously -- with the intention of replacing the natural hierarchy with their own illegitimate one. This is where all the false absolutes of the left enter the picture and set up shop (remember those cosmic interstices alluded to above). Left alone they become cancers, which means that, as they grow in strength and intensity, they actually begin to take on a gravitational attraction of their own.
You might even say that they become an alternative cosmic center that sets itself against the real one. It arrests progress -- the cosmic return -- by pulling both the innocent and guilty into its dark principality. It's methods are moral relativism, multiculturalism, and "critical theory," or deconstruction; its defender and guarantor is the coercion of political correctness rather than the "lure" of Truth; and its goal is the reversal of the cosmic order, the instantiation of the Fall, the obliteration of the vertical, and the exaltation (and therefore bestialization) of man, thus sealing his spiritual fate and ending the possibility of divine co-creation and theosis, or God-realization. Progressivism is the end of man's progress qua man.
It is appropriate that these cosmic tyrants are called "Democrats," for democracy is a system of information flow that can lead to the higher or to the lower. In fact, it will inevitably lead to the lower if we do not acknowledge at the outset that there is a higher toward which democracy must orient itself. In other words, in the absence of hierarchy, demo-cracy will become exactly what the word implies, which is to say, tyranny of the horizontalized masses, or demo-crazies.
The crazies of the left are half correct in their paranoid fear of a "theocratic takeover," in that we are ultimately faced with the choice between democracy and theocracy. The American founders, in their infinite wisdom, chose theocracy, in the sense that the only legitimate purpose of democracy could be to preserve and protect the spiritual freedom of the theocentric individual. In short, they created a theocracy that would be mediated not from the top down -- which is never a real theocracy, but monarchy -- through thousands and now millions of godlings, or "divine centers." But a democracy mediated by mere animal-men will sooner or later lead to the Reign of the Beast.
In the specific sense we are using the word, theocracy is "the only guarantee of a realistic liberty" (Schuon). Otherwise, the centrifugal riptide in which secular man stands soon leads to the pernicious idea that "truth amounts to the belief of the majority," and therefore, that the majority for all intents and purposes creates the truth, which is one of the explicit assumptions of the left -- i.e., "perception is reality." Under such bersercumstances, authority cannot appeal to truth, but "lives at the mercy of the electors," which in the end degrades them by patronizing them. Schuon adds that this doesn't mean democracy is impossible, but that "it is primarily a question of... an inwardly aristocratic and theocratic democracy" as envisioned by the Founders. In short, an exterior democracy of interior aristocats & chicks.