Monday, December 07, 2015

An Implicate War in Heaven?

"We live in a world ruled by lies," in which "lying and stealing are the dominant elements of human character..." (Mouravieff).

Yes, you could toss in envy as well, but that is always prelude to a swindle. And idolatry, but that's just the Lie of lies, as murder is the ultimate theft.

A bad lot, these humans. I thought about this while skimming this essay by Victor Davis Hanson, Liberal Nihilism in a Nutshell. Ho hum. The truth about liberalism is well known and understood. What else can one say? It has zero effect on them, which is maybe the most frightening thing about our world, for civilization cannot long survive without truth.

They are not moved by truth, nor can they be shamed. Now, animals have no sense of shame and are not moved by truth.

But a shameless human who rejects truth is not just an animal -- rather, something much worse. Elements of his personality will obviously become animalized, but other aspects will become monstrous; and the monstrous is not a category of nature.

Where is it then, and from what does it derive its energy?

Paul famously remarked that we don't so much wrestle "against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."

True, but he doesn't really define these dark principalities and powers. Perhaps they were just taken for granted. One commentary says that "a struggle, a 'battle of life' must be assumed at once by all who look at the world as it is; the question is whether it is against flesh and blood, or against a more unearthly power of evil." Another says that we do not wrestle "with feeble men, but we have to contend with the diabolic powers."

Perhaps, like us, they worship a father. Of lies. This father's power is "real, but limited and transitory, able only to enslave those who 'yield themselves' to it, and destined to be overcome; and it seems to refer especially to the concrete power of evil, exercised through physical and human agency."

Another commentary adds that "The spiritual hosts of evil are described as fighting in the region above the earth." Maybe it's like being in an unhappy home, where one can hear the parents duking it out upstairs.

I don't have the time to read all those commentaries, but I do have time to make up my own.

Humans exist as individuals. We can all see that. However, what we maybe don't see is the Total Cosmic System that makes this individuality possible. I might compare it to David Bohm's Wholeness and the Implicate Order. Bohm's central point is that the phenomenal universe -- the explicate order -- is only the outward precipitate of a totally flowing cosmic whole.

As it so happens, my doctoral dissertation was on the subject of how Bohm's paradigm may be applied to the human mind. Perhaps this post involves applying it to the much wider spiritual space of which the mind is only one aspect.

The first reviewer notes that "Bohm treats the totality of existence as an unbroken whole." The "implicate order" means "that any independent element in our universe contains within it the sum of all elements, i.e., the sum of all existence itself. He describes an enfolding-unfolding universe with consciousness playing a central role."

And crucially, in between the implicate and explicate orders are "hidden variables," which are like relatively stable transformation operations. In short, something in the explicate order can look completely stable and concrete, but it is nevertheless the "end result," so to speak, of an infinite number of processes. Not to go all Deepak on you, but this is surely what quantum physics "shows," i.e., its overall vision. And this vision is precisely what Alfred North Whitehead tries to develop in his postmodern metaphysics of process.

As an aside, some people say that you really have only one or two ideas that you keep flogging in diverse ways. Here I am, back to the same place -- the same attractor -- where it all started.

Back to the subject at hand, perhaps this "war in heaven" is really a war in the implicate order. We mostly deal with its effects in the explicate order, just as, say, a neurotic person deals with explicate symptoms that are really a consequence of pain and conflict in his unconscious-implicate order. Someone suggested as much in a paper published back in 1991. Oh, right. Me.

I wonder if there's anything in there that can help us today, in our search for the implicate powers and principalities that render the left so hopelessly fucked up?

Bohm "begins with this notion of an underlying, undivided wholeness, and then attempts to show how, amidst this wholeness there may exist the 'relatively enduring subtotalities' available to our senses and scientific instruments."

In another hint of things to come, "Language becomes problematic at this point," because its structure "presupposes a universe of individual parts in external relationship to one another." But underneath the explicate order of conventional language is "the vast multidimensional sea" of quantum-linguistic potential which "forms the constantly unfolding common ground of the manifest cosmos." From here it is but a step to the implicate and generative linguistic order of the Cosmogenesis and Cosmobliteration sections of the Encirclopedia.

I am flat out of time this morning. I'll have to leave it to readers to explicate this idea that there is some kind of nonlocal war going on in the implicate heavens, and that we're just the collateral damage. Spookulate away!

Man... lets himself be bound more and more in life: his faculty for lying gives him the marvelous impression of being able to arrange [read: explicate] things for the best in difficult situations, but he forgets that lies, once uttered, put him under obligation. Imaginary facts... demand [an implicate] context which... must support the circumstances within which we live and act... a serious lie unfailingly leads to a catastrophe commensurate with the importance of the problem. --Mouravieff

15 Comments:

Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Looks like an interesting book. But note what the reviewer says about Pope Paul VI speaking to "something preternatural" coming "into the world to disturb, to suffocate, the fruits of the Ecumenical Council and to prevent the Church from bursting into a hymn of joy for having regained full awareness of itself."

12/07/2015 09:27:00 AM  
Blogger Van Harvey said...

"A bad lot, these humans. I thought about this while skimming this essay by Victor Davis Hanson, Liberal Nihilism in a Nutshell. Ho hum. The truth about liberalism is well known and understood. What else can one say? It has zero effect on them, which is maybe the most frightening thing about our world, for civilization cannot long survive without truth."

Yep. Scary. Back when Gruber admitted lying about ObamaCare as a strategy for winning support from the stupid people, and none of those people cared at all, I was jaw-dropped:

"Does anyone really not realize the significance of an entire people having little or no reaction to being wronged and lied to?"

And the answer I've been getting loud and clear ever since, is that the precious snowflakes would rather be melted, than admit that lies (theirs) are anything to be bothered about.

Good times.

12/07/2015 09:51:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

Yep. Considering that this is Obama's last year, I expect that things all around the world are going to get very ugly in the coming months. Americans might come to their senses and elect someone who actually intends to do something useful - or at least, won't be busy sabotaging his own country - for all anyone knows, so now is the time to act out.

I'll have to leave it to readers to explicate this idea that there is some kind of nonlocal war going on in the implicate heavens, and that we're just the collateral damage. Spookulate away!

Considering again the OT, it seems like we're still fighting the same battles as the ancient Israelites, only an a vastly larger scale. All things considered, it becomes harder to believe there isn't a nonlocal war going on.

12/07/2015 10:46:00 AM  
Anonymous DougieFranklin said...

I've recently learned about Swedenborg, the 18th century theologian and mystic who claimed angels showed him the world beyond over a period of twenty years. He posited a reality where good and evil angels, which are just dead people in the next life, influence the living for good or ill.

No particular point in bringing him up except the subject of this post reminded me. In my subconscious, this view of the world seems to have been embedded at a young age, most likely from cartoons where the character has an angel and a devil trying to get said character to do the good or bad deed. I wish I knew the bible better to know how much biblical passages refer to the influence of angels and demons.

12/07/2015 11:07:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

I was hoping Mushroom would throw some Biblical support our way.

12/07/2015 11:38:00 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

'case Mush is busier than I am, here is a celestial event recalled by that recent book about the Christ Comet:

"And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth. And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems. 4His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it. She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne, and the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, in which she is to be nourished for 1,260 days.

Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back, but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him..."

Rev 12

12/07/2015 01:25:00 PM  
Blogger Rick said...

"I'll have to leave it to readers to explicate this idea that there is some kind of nonlocal war going on..."

Sam says it's all we seems to be about..

12/07/2015 01:31:00 PM  
Blogger mushroom said...

This is the third time today that I have run across our being in a spiritual battle. Another clue can be found in Daniel 10. Daniel had been in intense prayer for three weeks when he is confronted by an angel:

Then he continued, “Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia.

The "prince of Persia" was not, I think, a flesh and blood human but some sort of spiritual being who was in there between the implicate and explicate. Sometimes these beings get their "people" into the right places. If you've ever wondered why places like Washington, D.C. and other capitol cities seem to have more corruption, I think it is more than the presence of free-flowing money.

12/07/2015 01:39:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

That's interesting. Just as there are positive-power places like Liverpool in 1962 or Memphis in 1954, there are negative ones....

12/07/2015 02:15:00 PM  
Blogger Paul Griffin said...

Sometimes these beings get their "people" into the right places. If you've ever wondered why places like Washington, D.C. and other capitol cities seem to have more corruption, I think it is more than the presence of free-flowing money.

After all, it was one of the three temptations of Jesus:

Matthew 4:8-9: Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.”

The enemy's always trying to work an angle to get the buy-in, and he'll say and do absolutely anything to get you to sign that dotted line. Almost as bad as a used car salesman...

...Another says that we do not wrestle "with feeble men, but we have to contend with the diabolic powers." Perhaps, like us, they worship a father. Of lies. This father's power is "real, but limited and transitory, able only to enslave those who 'yield themselves' to it, and destined to be overcome; and it seems to refer especially to the concrete power of evil, exercised through physical and human agency."

People start looking a lot different when you start to look at things this way. Or think of it in terms of mind parasites that are in the process of taking over the host's mental space: thoughts in search of a thinker to think them. Even if you don't believe in demons named Moloch or Beelzebub, you probably believe in our modern demons named Narcissism or Borderline Personality Disorder or ADHD. The distinction is more or less moot to my eye. You yield your self to these other things that are not you, and eventually so much has been yielded (or was never had in the first place, depending on how early the deal was made) to the intruder that there's not much left of the original person.

We see ourselves (or our children) doing things we don't understand, so we go to the healer to find out what has possessed us and what rituals we must perform and potions we must take to drive the demon out. Our rituals have gotten complex, and the potions have become incredibly intricate, and we are told that it is all very scientific, but any one who has gone through the process of using our modern rituals and potions to address these modern demons will know that it's all pretty much the same crapshoot that going to the village healer ever was...

I have a very hard time staying angry with most people, even people who have done or said horrible things to me, because sooner or later I tend to see these things at work in them and realize that they really didn't have any other tools in the box with which to respond to the world around them. They don't need another person mad at them, they are sick and need to be healed...

12/07/2015 05:26:00 PM  
Blogger ted said...

Pope John Paul II and MoTT

12/07/2015 07:26:00 PM  
Blogger Van Harvey said...

Keeping it simple:

"Knowledge is Power."

Accept that and you're lost.

Another simple aphorism clarifies how accepting the first one, gets you lost:

"Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely."

The fact that our entire educational system, and society at large, not only accept the first, but actively exhort people to get more knowledge to become more powerful... doesn't bode well.

Knowledge is typically a Good, and putting your knowledge towards a good purpose, can be a powerful aid in acheiving that good purpose, and that pattern keeps both knowledge and power safely in their place, in service to what is Good (determining what That is, is outside this comments parameters. See the Knowas Archive).

But "Knowledge is Power" turns Power into the 'good' that knowledge is sought for, and following that path spirals... all... the... way...

D
O
W
N
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.

12/08/2015 08:14:00 AM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

They don't need another person mad at them, they are sick and need to be healed...

The buy-in. Don't ever believe you're above it. The Grace. Don't ever believe you're beyond it.

12/08/2015 12:28:00 PM  
Blogger Paul Griffin said...

I have a very hard time staying angry with most people...

If course, say something like this, and dozens of counter examples will rush immediately to mind...

They don't need another person mad at them, they are sick and need to be healed...

As do we all, I suppose. As usual, I feel a more insightful thought rummaging around in there somewhere, but the words don't want to organize. Something to do with the pain a person has to ensure to effectively contribute to the healing of another, the unendurability of said pain, and therefore the obvious need for a perfect man to endure all the pain we can inflict in order to bring us the healing we need. I have rarely been less eloquent...

12/08/2015 02:03:00 PM  
Blogger Paul Griffin said...

I have a very hard time staying angry with most people...

If course, say something like this, and dozens of counter examples will rush immediately to mind...

They don't need another person mad at them, they are sick and need to be healed...

As do we all, I suppose. As usual, I feel a more insightful thought rummaging around in there somewhere, but the words don't want to organize. Something to do with the pain a person has to ensure to effectively contribute to the healing of another, the unendurability of said pain, and therefore the obvious need for a perfect man to endure all the pain we can inflict in order to bring us the healing we need. I have rarely been less eloquent...

12/08/2015 02:03:00 PM  

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