The Miracle of Paternal Cosmosis
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).