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