Wednesday, December 08, 2010

The Miracle of Paternal Cosmosis

"Heredity" means simply the transmission of similarity from ancestors to their descendents. In this sense, the invisibly divinely created archetypes are the "ancestors" of the visible species of animals. And the invisible archetype of man, the divine being itself, is the "ancestor" of the human being. The sickness which arose as a tragic consequence of the Fall was a change in the direction in the mirroring process of heredity; it changed from being vertical to become horizontal. --Valentin Tomberg

According to Tomberg, the second miracle recorded in the Gospel of John -- which would mirror the Creator's action on the sixth day -- addresses this issue of vertical and horizontal paternity and heredity.

Our souls descend into the stream of time, but our vertical heredity can be overwhelmed by fortuitous horizontal exigencies emanating from parents, culture, genes, bad luck, and other factors. In any event, the sins of the fathers and mothers, both individually and collectively, are visited upon the sons and daughters, in an intergenerational transmission of pathology or health.

Psychoanalysis calls the medium of pathological transmission "internalized objects," while I call them "mind parasites," because the latter has more pizazz.

As the first miracle -- the Wedding at Cana -- resonates with the seventh day of creation, the second miracle -- the healing of the nobleman's son at Capernaum -- resonates with the sixth. The nobleman implores Jesus to heal his son, who is said to be "near death."

John 4:48 betrays some apparent reluctance on Jesus' part, as he says, "Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will by no means believe."

A footnote in my Bible says that this reluctance is because "faith based on miraculous works alone is insufficient for salvation; this kind of incomplete [I would say childish] faith quickly turns to scorn should the miracles cease." (Note that the left's current scorn for Obama is just the mirror image of their childish belief in his messianic powers.)

But at the seventh hour, Jesus says to the man, "Go your way; your son lives." Later the nobleman is told by his servants that his son became well at exactly the seventh hour, when Jesus spoke those words.

God created human beings "on the sixth day," when he fashioned our vertical archetype: "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness." (The plural subject implies that our archetype is also trinitarian.)

The second miracle of John speaks to the restoration of this divine-human hereditary archetype that was forged on the penultimate day of creation, prior to the Fall, the latter of which doesn't happen until -- well, it doesn't specify, but it would presumably be no earlier than the "eighth day," assuming it didn't occur on the sabbath.

Thus, the hereditary distortion introduced by the Fall is restored "by the father bringing his son into a direct relationship to the divine archetype -- through his [the father's] faith in Jesus Christ, the new Adam" (Tomberg).

In other words, we mistakenly, if understandably, focus on the healing of the son, when the real action takes place in the father, who quite clearly "believed the word that Jesus had spoke to him" prior to the healing.

So the real transformation -- and restoration -- occurs first in the father, but has a vertical effect on the son downstream. After all, Jesus made a pretty bold statement, "Go your way -- your son lives," but the father didn't doubt it. If he had, the entire meaning of the parable would be different.

This brings out a critical point, that there is something central to fathers and to fatherhood in arresting the intergenerational transmission of mind parasites. Frankly, this is common sense, but it is certainly confirmed if we examine the anthropological and sociological evidence.

Put it this way: in the absence of a strong, vertically oriented father figure, a boy is very likely to remain a more or less horizontal animal. He will be male -- a biological entity under the influence of his horizontal genetic and cultural programming -- but not a man -- which is the first vertical category introduced into human culture. Indeed, it is the foundation of human culture.

This is not difficult to understand. As I explained in the Coonifesto, the mother-infant dyad is a biologically natural phenomenon. Not until men entered that closed system could humans escape biology by becoming the psychologically trimorphic family: mother-father-baby. Thus, "father" is the pillar, so to speak, of society, a non-biological category that then alters the other two: mother simultaneously becomes wife, and baby simultaneously has a way to escape engulfment in the Great Mother archetype, but not without difficulty.

However, it is almost impossible to bridge this gap and escape the orbit of the primordial mother (one might say "mother nature") without a vertical father to model the way. Almost all of the really serious problems in society can be traced to the absence of fathers and of men, either literally or figuratively. Our prisons are overcrowded with horizontal males who never became men, although perhaps not to the extent of our professional athletes.

I recall a study from awhile back, documenting how the father's religiosity varies directly with the child's, much more so than the mother's, which has almost no effect. In light of the above, this makes perfect sense. As in the paradoxable of the nobleman's son, somehow the vertical restoration of the father has a direct effect on the child.

This is also relevant to why God is spoken of as "Father," or why the Pope must be a man. To mess around with these divinely ordained archetypes is not just to render them inoperative, but it is to undermine the divine-human economy and to disfigure man as such. To suggest that this is in any way misogynistic is just the usual ovary tower feminist hysteria and naïveté. Woman and girls benefit from proper men every bit as much as boys do.

In fact, the terrestrial father may recede into the background once he has brought his son into a vertical hereditary relationship with the new Adam, which restores fatherhood and sonship in the same way that the first miracle restores marriage, or male and female. In other words, father love can be as destructive as mother love if it is not seen as the transition to a higher love. To the extent that we are good fathers, it is only because we have been deputized by The Father.

Each of us is called upon to make the naturally supernatural transition from horizontal heredity to vertical heredity. Truly, that is when your mission as a father has been accomplished -- when you may "go your way," knowing in faith that "your son lives."

A brief addendum -- last night I watched the film Letters From Iwo Jima, which tells the story of the battle from the Japanese point of view. Although it is supposed to be sympathetic, one thing that stood out for me was the vast differences in their cultural conceptions of fatherhood, leadership, patriotism, and sacrifice. Because they did not share our western values that cherish the individual, they were more like an anthill, in which any particular ant's only allegiance -- and worth -- is to queen and colony.

Just as in the Islamic world, their leaders were incredibly sadistic, and betrayed a murderous attitude toward their worthless "sons," readily sacrificing them on the altar of a wholly terrestrial imperialism. At one point a Japanese officer tells his troops to shoot medics first, since Americans will foolishly waste several lives trying to save him. And when their "honor" was at stake, the father-leaders readily committed suicide in a wholly selfish manner, abandoning their son-troops in the field, where they were expected to fight until death. Thus, one might say that Japanese fathers were willing to fight to the very last son (and which is why the atom bomb saved so many Japanese lives).

27 Comments:

Blogger Rick said...

These are wonderful, Bob.

You know how I keep saying "this may be the post to introduce my son..". Well, I'm sort of glad I've been putting that off.

Please continue...

12/08/2010 08:28:00 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

Oh, and this post reminds me (since it's been on our minds at my home a lot lately) of the movie "The Road".

It's difficult to watch I can say as a father with a young son. But it is well done. Anyway, the boy watched it alone, while his mother and I were away last week. He asked for it on Netflix for this occasion. He was quite taken by it and has asked for a copy of the book, a hard cover of it, for Christmas. That may be the first book he's ever asked for.

Anyway, don't miss the movie if you can sneak a couple hours sometime. 'Course, it's not for youngins.

12/08/2010 08:39:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

I started reading the book, but found it too bleak...

12/08/2010 08:42:00 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

I can't speak for the book. Haven't read it yet. But there are beautiful moments in the movie. A lot like Frankl's book. Viggo is amazing.
The small cast of characters are all archetypes. Duvall has a small part. And Guy Pierce at the end - did not recognize him he looks so different.

But I know what you mean, it was the first movie I recall after only 15 minutes thinking, "I can't make it through this".

12/08/2010 08:49:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Really, it's the same theme as his No Country For Old Men, which is all about the broken link between fathers and sons, resulting in a frightening new kind of criminal.

12/08/2010 08:54:00 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

Yes, but this one is about the other result -- how a good man is made from a son by his good father.

This trailer is more like the actual movie than how some trailers play it as if were an action movie.

12/08/2010 09:00:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Right -- I just meant that McCarthy seems to be preoccupied with that issue of father-son transmission in a fallen world. He had a son at a rather advanced age...

12/08/2010 09:08:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

Speaking of fathers and sons, the boys first word as of yesterday appears to be "Daddy." Not that he necessarily knows what he's saying, but he's copying the syllables with great pleasure.

Anyway, back to fathers and faith, I wonder if it follows, then, that for men whose fathers weren't interested, a mentor of faith of some sort - a surrogate father, as it were - is needed to help them see?

12/08/2010 09:08:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

"boy's" not "boys" - there's only one, thank goodness; at this rate, I don't think I could keep up with more...

12/08/2010 09:11:00 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

"Anyway, back to fathers and faith, I wonder if it follows, then, that for men whose fathers weren't interested, a mentor of faith of some sort - a surrogate father, as it were - is needed to help them see?"

You mean like me and Bob?
Cooncur.
:-)

(My Dad's one of the good guys though, but pretty hands off with regard to faith and such. Outwardly anyway.)

12/08/2010 09:15:00 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

And from Father Stephen, yesterday...

Anyway, back to the grind stone.
Rick out.

12/08/2010 09:18:00 AM  
Blogger JP said...

Anyway, this would be why "heaven" so to speak has seven levels or planes. Non-finite horizontal steps on the vertical ladder.

Actually, I like "non-finite" better than infinite.

Although, again, there needs to be a better word for this.

12/08/2010 09:23:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

I had missed that one. Thanks Rick!

***

...this kind of incomplete [I would say childish] faith quickly turns to scorn should the miracles cease." (Note that the left's current scorn for Obama is just the mirror image of their childish belief in his messianic powers.)

Speaking of whom, this post also goes to the heart of what's ultimately so wrong with him personally. Fatherless, and the surrogates he was given (then later chose to follow) did nothing to guide him toward the higher vertical.

12/08/2010 09:23:00 AM  
Blogger JP said...

Bob says:

"I recall a study from awhile back, documenting how the father's religiosity varies directly with the child's, much more so than the mother's, which has almost no effect."

Well, this worked for me, at least. Although I am much more "religious/spiritual" than my father.

I like going to church. I just don't like the actual participation in the services. That makes me quite odd, I guess.

I enjoy the ambience of church, but not the service.

I'd be the same way if I were in a monestary. I'd probably enjoy being there, I just wouldn't like the structure and repetition of the monastic life.

12/08/2010 09:26:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

JP, you can't eff the ineffable, you can only approximate it.

As to ladders, levels and planes, here's what can be known on this side of the veil:

The ladder’s lowest step
Prescribes pure prayer alone.
But prayer has many forms:
My discourse would be long
Were I now to speak of them:
And, friend, know that always
Experience teaches one, not words.
A ladder rising wondrously to heaven's vault:

12/08/2010 09:29:00 AM  
Blogger Grant Maher said...

An excellent post. I agree across the board with your assertions about fatherhood in general.

However, in my orbit there are examples where the mother's religiosity had a large impact on her children.

Also there are men raised without fathers who are either raccoons or recruit material.

I don't think we've covered all the variables here. Something doesn't add up.

12/08/2010 09:58:00 AM  
Blogger Tigtog said...

To: Gagdad
Re: Iwo and Fathers

Wow, double whammy. My Father spent 30 days on Iwo commanding A Co, 21st Marines. In that time he was wounded twice and replaced his company's strength approx 220 men) three times over. He never spoke of the his war memories to me until as a Lt I was to conduct an amphibious exercise on Iwo. I received the longest letter he had ever written me. He told me pointedly his battle experiences on Iwo. He was seriously wounded (chest wound) on day 33 of the battle on the northern cliffs. The official battle ended the next day.

When it was clear that my Father was near his end, he wanted most to read the Daily Reports filed for his Company during Iwo. Obviously he wanted to remember those he lost and was soon to join. His life achievement that brought him the most personal satisfaction was being able to have commanded every Rifle Company within the 21st Marines during the Pacific Campaign. For perspective, my Father achieved all of this before he was 30 years old. Puts life into perspective.

I was a very fortunate son to have such a great Father.

12/08/2010 10:03:00 AM  
Blogger JP said...

Julie says:

"JP, you can't eff the ineffable, you can only approximate it.

As to ladders, levels and planes, here's what can be known on this side of the veil"

UF said something about this in MOT. He referred to it as steps removed, or something. It was in the context of angels and spiritual respiration.

If I had MOT in front of me, I could find it.

12/08/2010 10:49:00 AM  
Blogger mushroom said...

Woman and girls benefit from proper men every bit as much as boys do.

Really. Daughters need positive fathers as much if not more than sons. I can see the difference in my two granddaughters. The biggest losers in feminism's war against men (i.e., fatherhood) are women.

12/08/2010 11:51:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

Note that the left's current scorn for Obama is just the mirror image of their childish belief in his messianic powers.

Even Olby has finally turned...

12/08/2010 02:29:00 PM  
Blogger kabir said...

Your post rings true, but also makes me sick to my stomach to think of the ways in which manhood and fatherhood have been greatly twisted the last couple of generations.

Can a generational gap in this fatherhood transmission be reconciled or repaired? Certainly the degree of damage has some effect on this, but yikes...

On a resonant note I have been reading some of Dr. Russel Kirks work, and was particularly fascinated by his notion of the importance of tradition. I found myself in agreement with his conservative views on everything but his views on tradition. Upon thinking on it I realized it has been sort of embedded in our young generation to come to expect to reject the old traditions, for what we take too quickly to be progress.

So what then is a good metric or winnowing screen for sifting out legitimate progress from cultural decay?

12/08/2010 04:17:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

That is an extremely complicated question. I say it is the ability to actualize one's true spiritual nature and creative potential.

BTW, today Dennis Prager said something that completely reinforced today's post -- that a society's conception of what is admirable in a man will determine whether that society is admirable.

12/08/2010 05:13:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Kabir,

Can a generational gap in this fatherhood transmission be reconciled or repaired?

I would guess (well, hope) it must be possible, given the fact that the basic state of man up til recently could generally be described as "warlike," and historically there have been more than a few conflicts that literally wiped out most of the men in some places.

12/08/2010 05:22:00 PM  
Blogger Northern Bandit said...

a society's conception of what is admirable in a man will determine whether that society is admirable

In simple societies this is simple to observe. America contains at least two loosely defined "societies" within it at this point in history. What is admirable to "progressives" is radically different than what is admirable to traditional Americans. This schizoid cultural condition must resolve itself somehow, mustn't it?

12/08/2010 08:56:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

"To the extent that we are good fathers, it is only because we have been deputized by The Father."

That's a real badge of honor too, with a seemingly insurmountable responsibility and duty to fullfill.
Were it not for the love and wisdom of The Father being passed down continuously along with that deputization and an O-pen Lion of communication...then all it would be is a fake badge without any authority to back it up.

I concur it is much harder to be a father for those who never had a horizontal father (or one that was never more than a biological father) but still possible with The Father.

At least there is hope whenever The Father is accepted.

For many years it seemed to me that the sins of the father are far easier to pass on to children (even if it's involuntary on the concious level) than the righteousness and blessings of the father (be that as it may).

However, it now seems to me that The Father makes it at least possible to even the playing field, so to speak, especially since it's the righteousness of The Father and His blessings (as well as our own) we fathers try to pass on to our children.
Both through actions and words, but mostly through actions, because that resonates more with children than words alone even if they don't realize it yet.

Of course, I don't mean to be trite, since this is a very complicated subject with lots of variables I don't completely understand, let alone have the ability (or time) to explain (even if I did fully understand).

Just a Benservation. Usually Bob (and other Raccoons) knows what I mean anyways and can translate...if he hasn't already. :^)

12/09/2010 12:57:00 AM  
Blogger JP said...

Kabir says:

"So what then is a good metric or winnowing screen for sifting out legitimate progress from cultural decay?"

You can also try:

"Is this a good idea or a bad idea?"

Normally, you can tell by the results of the application of the idea to society. If the idea results in something that looks and feels like decay, then it was a bad idea.

For instance, anything that results in an economic bubble and crash (see the housing crisis for details), then it was a bad idea.

If the idea in question results in the invasion of Russia during winter, you can also presume that it was a bad idea.

And what Bob said.

12/09/2010 06:19:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

“In fact, the terrestrial father may recede into the background once he has brought his son into a vertical hereditary relationship with the new Adam, which restores fatherhood and sonship in the same way that the first miracle restores marriage, or male and female. In other words, father love can be as destructive as mother love if it is not seen as the transition to a higher love. To the extent that we are good fathers, it is only because we have been deputized by The Father.

Each of us is called upon to make the naturally supernatural transition from horizontal heredity to vertical heredity. Truly, that is when your mission as a father has been accomplished -- when you may "go your way," knowing in faith that "your son lives."”

That one line is an important one. I see a lot of sMothering fathers, always pointing to themselves ‘look how cool I am’, ‘Hey, let’s play with me’… like kids who finally got a friend who’ll follow them all around.

A Father needs to be there, pointing the way, but not pointing at himself pointing… that leads to a need for continual ‘signs and wonders for both the father and son. Fatherhood, as opposed to fathering, is to be always visibly pointing out and up, in such a way as to affect the shape of the child’s interior form – it doesn’t so much say ‘be like me’, but this is the form of being a Man and a Father, the archetype, rather than the instance - enabling growth that doesn’t unbalance, so that the child himself becomes self-directed and visible pointer for others to see… that’s a miraculous lesson, and it benefits the teacher every bit as much as the student.

wv:leado
O yes

12/09/2010 06:21:00 AM  

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