Tuesday, August 04, 2009

We Are All Christians Now

Continuing with yesterday's post, Maximus affirms one of those old metaphysical truths-that-cannot-not-be, that multiplicity is "in the product" while unity is "in the source." In order to avoid further insulting our exquisitely sensitive atheist readers, let's just say that the source of this a priori cosmic unity is a mystery, and call it O. Obviously O "exists"; or, to be perfectly accurate, it is the ground or source of existence.

Let's find out how it all works, shall we?!

In order to talk about this mystery at all, we must borrow terms from existence, so we can mislead ourselves if we're not careful. To put it simply, we exist. O does not. So it's a bit like describing the sound of purple. It can be done, but only through higher mythsemantics. In order to cross the phoenix line, our powers of deception must be cleansed. As we always say, your seenill grammar and gravidad may not be malapropriate for these laughty revelations.

The problem is, our trolls -- who stand in for fallen mankind -- basically confuse what they are capable of understanding with what it is possible to understand. In other words, they are children.

Since God is the source of unity, and we exist within time, then you might say that reality is the formation and dissolution of multiplicity within God. Existence is a kind of emanation and return to God. This is what we call the "adventure of consciousness."

Looked at in a certain way -- my way, to be exact -- existence itself is a kind of alienation from God, and religion is the healing of that alienation. (Some of these ideas flirt with the gnaughty kind of gnosticism, but if you stay with me, I think you'll find that it's all kosher; as we've discussed in the past, it's not so much that heresies are absolutely false, but that they either overemphasize one element or exclude another, thereby causing a fatal imbalance within integral Truth. For example, there is obvious partial truth in pantheism, or emanationism, or even polytheism; or you could simply say that God is everything but that everything is not God.)

In order for existence to exist, there must be time and space. Time and space are the primary modes of existence, so that we are really talking about synonymous terms. Thus, God is not an object in space, which is why we do not say that he "exists."

Now, objects that exist are not radically autonomous in any way, shape or form. Even without getting into religious metaphysics, this is proved by modern physics, which shows material reality to consist of nonlocal energy (see my book for the exciting details; offer may not apply in Berkeley). In this view, everything is not just a part of everything else, but everything is within everything else. All "objects" are ultimately members of one another, if that's not too disgusting to contemplate.

Truly, we are all -- animate and inanimate alike -- members of the same species, the species of Existence. And if we didn't share membership in this species, then nothing would work, to put it mildly. We couldn't know anything, especially other minds. This is why I mentioned yesterday that even atheists are Christians, as they surely partake of this primordial cosmic unity, just like everyone else. Opposing God is like opposing gravity. You can do it, but only because gravity exists.

One of the mysteries of humanness -- a mystery that Darwinism will never be able to explain, since "explanation" would be impossible without it -- is this intersubjective openness through which we are members of one another. This would be the basis of my critique of neo-Marxist leftism on the one hand, and radical libertarianism on the other, for both begin with a faulty metaphysic. You might say that leftism reduces us to the the collective wave, while libertarianism reduces us to the autonomous particle.

But wave and particle are just ways to think about a reality that transcends both categories. In reality, as Balthasar writes, creatures "can only be open to each other through their transcendental identity in the unity of God."

Our common identity is a kind of negative one, in that first and foremost we are not God, even while we participate in God. However, it is also a "positive identity," in that "the one Creator keeps [creatures] in being, one might say, through his relationship to them." It's like my child. Yes, he exists as an autonomous subject. But he wouldn't exist very long without us "sponsoring" or underwriting his existence.

As someone mentioned the other day, it is possible to misunderstand the idea of God as "father." We do not begin with terrestrial fatherhood and project that into the heavens; rather, vice versa. To understand God is to begin to understand the true archetype of worldly fatherhood. I have many fathers, but only because they reflect the one Father. And of course, only because there is one Father can we all be brothers. If there is no Father, then we are all just animals fighting over the scraps. Blah blah blah liberal fascism Darwinism Queeg Deepak >insert standard diatribe here<.

So, we do not start our analysis with "existence," since we know that existence has a source. This is the unbridgeable abyss that divides mankind: there are those who begin with existence, and those who begin with essence. For the Marxist in all his ghastly varieties -- whatever you care to call him -- existence precedes essence. This does not so much eliminate God as elevate man to a false god, or into samskary monsters.

But the theist begins with essence, and if you are capable of thinking, then you realize that essence belongs to God. In other words, essence is clearly "supernatural," even while being immanent in nature. In fact, it is a kind of first hand implicit knowledge of God, for whenever we know an essence -- including our own essence -- we are participating in the Divine Mind.

Again, this is why it is so unproblematic for man to be able to "see through" nature, or to know universals, or to love the essence of another, or to produce beautiful art, or to comprehend the meaning of a poem, or to understand where this post is coming from. None of these things would be remotely possible in the absence of God, because each is a result of everything being unified in God, but dispersed, as it were, through the prismhouse of existence. All colors are only varieties of the colorless light.

Looked at in this way, we can see that consciousness itself is one -- must be one -- but that, in our case, it is refracted through the lens of a bipedal primate. This is why there are gradations of consciousness within man, ranging from the supramental saint, to the veritable trousered ape, on down to the MSNBC host. Only because there is unity is this diversity possible. Eliminate the unity, then a Maximus is no better than a Maher and the supramental is no better than the Olbermental. Relativity -- including relative stupidity -- only exists in light of the absolute.

Everything is nonlocally "linked together" in God. In a way, it's like the foreground and background of a picture. We focus on the foreground, but only because there is the "invisible" background from which it emerges. Thus, you could say that God must be "invisible" in order for existence to be visible. He is the Silence out of which the Music arises. Here is how Maximus describes it:

"God draws up all the things that are naturally distinct from each other and binds them to himself as their cause, their origin and goal.... No being can permanently isolate itself through its own particularity or through the drive of its nature toward some other end; rather, everything remains, in its very being, bound without confusion to everything else, through the single, enduring relationship of all to their one and only source.... For as the parts come to be from the whole, so created things come to be from their cause and are recognized in its light."

This is the "paradox of a synthesis that unites creatures by distinguishing them and distinguishes them by uniting them -- a paradox that can be found throughout the whole edifice of the universe..." (Balthasar).

One Cosmos Under God. Where else could it be?


Abdul said...

Not that insults their atheists who read them, as if or he is it are. Load that the problem is that so the right understands the true nature to him of God and the universe. Isn't seems later as this periodic whole number and its articles are only visualizations, one that you wrote. I do not buy my local commercial center of literature. The stations modify, people modify, is you seem you break temporary the external one who have taste yesterday so by much hour. The sources the apprehension are, cooperate and feel, come from the return with very a new invention. That with God now is and can possibly play that straight ignition, what really continues, Abdul

Gagdad Bob said...

There is a difference between mythsemantics and allgibrish.

bobxxxx said...

Wow. So full of shit.

Van said...

Wo my gOsh!

In order to save time and preserve precious Html, I'll only add the rest of my comments to this post virtually, just pretend that I've gone through the post line by line, and repasted each with my Yes! under it, and we'll leave it at that.

(for now)

sehoy said...


The translator is not working.

It is impossible to understand what you are trying to say.

Van said...

Or as Abdul would say (translating my previous comment to German->Portuguese -> Japanese and back into English

My God!

In order to save valuable time and receive the HTML, I can help the rest of the comments for this article, I pretended like I was in line in the line of the email, yes I disappeared repasted! Framework, you must let go.

(isn't this citizen of the world stuff great? I feel like I've just communicated with all the worlds beings!)


QP said...

Re: Hamas Mass Wedding

I first saw that story on Jihad Watch that linked to an AFP report and this blog post. Given the lack of clear cut evidence that the little girls in white were in fact the brides and not just flower girls, Robert Spencer removed the post at JW.

In this Aug. 2nd AlJazerraEnglish video, you can see the 225 brides all seated together wearing black & green.

This BBC story also has a photo of the brides. "Hamas frowns on brides wearing white".

Of course we all know that arranged marriages between adult males and young girls in muslim dominated lands is not uncommon, just not this time.

julie said...

My mistake; I hadn't seen the debunking, just Avrech's commentary. Thanks for the clarification, QP.

Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus said...

and call it O


Wait, not what you meant. Sorry.

Anonymous said...

Let us say that what you write is correct and true...then what?

Gagdad Bob said...

Then buy my book and read the previous 1,244 posts.

Magnus Itland said...

To be honest, today's post was beyond me, except in so far as it aligned perfectly with my view of the universe as a multidimensional membrane between the void (negative nothingness) and godhead (positive no-thing-ness), with a layered structure or rather gradient with content of realness higher the closer you come to the positive pole.

In truth, I cannot even imagine the worlds closest to the poles. I know that those who withdraw toward the Void get a temporary feeling of being more real, due to the thinning of reality around them, but eventually this path cause us to lose substance as we move, kind of like a snail. There is an ocean of chaos and madness in that direction and I know of no one who has come further than that.

In the other direction is an increased "density of reality", and increased sanity, not a comfortable thing at first. Things grow ever more durable and unyielding. There are causes of things we only knew as effects. Myths, archetypes and ideas. But the distance from Mundania to the pole is also there beyond my comprehension.

Maximus, John Scotus or even von Balthasar... it is like they have traveled around the globe, where I have only watched the masts of a ship disappear slowly under the horizon and realized from this that yes, the world is round.

But round it is, anyway.

Gagdad Bob said...

This has got to be some kind of first -- an actually useful article in Psychology Today: Why Most Journalists Are Democrats.

Christian Prophet said...

It might be a good idea to read A Course in Miracles. Then understanding might come. I think you've already read the Spiritual Basis of Liberty:

Northern Bandit said...

I noticed that Psych Today article in the bytestream this morning, but I thought it had to be a mirage or the product of a poltergeist.

It seems real though...

Northern Bandit said...

"But, having worked among the Soviets, I know that large groups of very intelligent people can fall into a collective delusion that what they are doing in certain areas is the right thing, when it's actually not the right thing at all."

I mean seriously though, somebody MUST have hijacked Psychology Today...

What's next, a reflective Queeg? A humble and decent Maher?

The Mayans were right!

julie said...

Hm. Spengler has an interesting idea, for those who regularly go to church: "Let the scoundrels know that vigilantes for orthodoxy are watching them."

Sounds like there may be more examples of "intelligent people falling into the collective delusion that what they are doing is the right thing." I wonder what kind of response he'll get?

Magnus Itland said...

Speaking of scientific articles, you may want to glance at this one from New Scientist:
From butterfly to caterpillar: How children grow up.
It suffers from the mandatory "must find a species that does the same thing", but since the best match is crows, it probably won't shake anyone here to the core...
The idea that what made us human was not the evolutionary pressure of hunting but the "division of labor" between children and adults, sounds eerily familiar...

Gagdad Bob said...

Excellent! Science is catching up to the Raccoons.

Gagdad Bob said...

Here's her book on amazon.

Anonymous said...

"It might be a good idea to read A Course in Miracles."

...if you like being deceived by demons.

Petey said...

Up here we call it a course in manacles.

Ricky Raccoon said...

"Excellent! Science is catching up to the Raccoons."

Studies show, given enough time, typewriters and scientists...

Concerned Scientist said...

Who you callin' a monkey?

sehoy said...

"A course in manacles."

That's a keeper.

Anonymous said...

This has got to be some kind of first -- an actually useful article in Psychology Today: Why Most Journalists Are Democrats.

Her point about journalistic neurocircuitry makes sense. If these types were more interested in making money, they’d most likely be attorneys.

What’s intriguing though, is how Ms. Oakley mentions psychopathy/sociopathy, yet appears to miss the concept that people whose methods are not constrained by any morality and who are also expert chameleons (such as the intelligent psychopath) are always best equipped to take control of any institution which will have them.

Corporations, unions, the media, the USSR, churches... are all susceptible to the crafty megalomaniac.

So how does she propose checking and balancing those with dysfunctional drive for power neurocircuitry? She doesn’t. And this is also exactly where libertarianism fails - where you wind up with unempathetic nutjobs running everything, except for government of course.

USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

This is a fascinating train you're conducting here, Bob.
Entering gnu (gnew?) territory...for me anyway.

Doc Skully said...

"And this is also exactly where libertarianism fails - where you wind up with unempathetic nutjobs running everything, except for government of course."

Most politicians might very well be empathetic...towards their own ideology, BUTT...when that "empathy" believes it's okay to annihilate liberty...our liberty, then it's not a redeeming factor by any stretch of the word, but one we should never want.

Anonymous said...

I’d think the trick is to annihilate the sociopathy without getting rid of the liberty.

USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Anonymous said...
I’d think the trick is to annihilate the sociopathy without getting rid of the liberty.

I cooncur. In the meantime, we oughtta question their empathy, or their particular definition of empathy (because true empathy includes liberty and freedom).