And what do we mean by miraculous? Broadly speaking, I would define the miraculous as any vertical ingression that in principle defies horizontal explanation. Horizontality goes into the miracle, but cannot be its sufficient reason.
For example, the brain is a necessary condition for our humanness, but clearly not sufficient, not just on an individual basis today, but as a species in the distant past.
This latter is discussed in the bʘʘk, in the context of the sudden explosion of humanness that occurs around 40,000 years ago. Mere horizontal evolution, we are told, doesn't work that way. And yet, there it is. Something occurs vertically, and I know what it was: a vertical ingression, AKA miracle.
It's very much like Michelangelo's depiction of the creation of Adam on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, only in the immaterial realm: as with any myth, it is a local representation of a nonlocal truth. Only when hominid nervous systems became sufficiently complex were they susceptible to the divine touch, or vertical ingression.
Another reason why we know this is the case is that what is true today must have been true then. Humans today routinely experience vertical ingressions of various kinds -- Joy Behar notwithstanding, -- so there is no reason to believe our furbears were denied this logospheric manna from heaven. Indeed, there is evidence that they tended to conflate it with other immaterial influences (which we also still do today, most notoriously in the Islamic world).
Speaking of Islamists, note the inverse possibility: of receiving vertical ingressions even while denying the existence of God. This is the structure of leftism, as outlined by Michael Polanyi some 75 years ago, and nothing has changed in the meantime: that "despite its rejection of transcendent reality, it exhibits a high degree of moral passion."
No kidding. But never conflate moral passion and morality, especially the objective kind! There is plenty of moral passion -- even hysteria -- on the left, little in the way of detached and objective morality -- even an overt denial that such a thing exists. As such, their subjective and relativistic moral passion "is not a mark of honor -- instead, it is a mark of dishonor," for "here we have moral passion without any moral judgment":
"Polanyi maintains that a 'moral inversion' has occurred." This ontologically rootless moral passion "now invokes any means, however grotesque and immoral, to satisfy its longings. Under this guise, moral passion serves rather than spurns the cause of fanaticism" (from the foreword of The Logic of Liberty).
Which is how it comes to pass that we are ruled not only by our intellectual inferiors, but moral inferiors as well, AKA the Swamp.
Say what you like about our swamp-dwelling elites, but they are never short of passion, no matter how misguided. When one avenue is blocked -- say, "Russian collision" -- they pick themselves up as if nothing happened, and move on to the next unhinged passion. What will it be today? That's really what the FakeNews comes down to. Give me a hard-bitten cynic any day over a passionate moralist of the left!
We are still on the subject of the Human Station, and what it all means. Clearly, it must in a way mean "everything" on pain of meaning nothing, precisely. As we've put it before, the world cannot be a little bit pregnant with meaning. And the ONLY conceivable way it can mean anything is for it to be a reflection of absoluteness. Absent this, we are indeed plunged into relativity, AKA permanent and ineradicable stupidity. Who doesn't see it?
A free society is animated by transcendent beliefs -- or beliefs anchored in transcendence -- or it isn't free. And freedom is the miracle par excellence, for it has no conceivable horizontal explanation, to such an extent that those who are wedded to a materialistic metaphysic have no choice but to deny its existence. But the integral cosmic man -- AKA Raccoon -- recognizes and says from himsoph: I am free, therefore God is. Conversely, the credo of the left ought to be: I think, therefore I shouldn't. For whenever they try to think, mischief -- from simple theft to genocide -- follows.
Time out for some illustrative aphorisms:
He who does not believe in God can at least have the decency of not believing in himself.
Yes, literally, because why on earth would a tenured ape take himself seriously?
Liberals can be divided into those who believe that wickedness is curable and those who deny that it exists.
And this division runs through the very heart of the liberal, who screams that only an evil conservative could believe in the fairy tale morality of good and evil. For truly, The progressive believes that everything soon turns obsolete except his ideas.
And passions. Condemnatory passions. Which is why, When the progressive condemns, every intelligent man must feel alluded to. Yes you, you deplorable racist sexist homophobic Islamophobic fundamentalist pig!
Enough with Homo diabolos. Back to Homo mirabilis. As usual, Schuon cuts through centuries of windbaggery, and right to the essence. What we call a miracle
has in itself nothing mysterious or problematical about it: the so-called natural laws of a lower degree of Existence can always be suspended through the intervention of a higher degree, whence the perfectly logical term “supernatural”: but this degree also has its laws, which means that the miracle is “natural” on the universal scale, while being “supernatural” on the earthly scale.
So, from the naturalistic perspective, the human person is a miracle. But from the perspective of the Divine Person? Eh, not so much.
The miraculous is that which is due to a direct, thus vertical intervention of a heavenly Power, and not to a horizontal progression of causality. If one extends the notion of “nature” to all that exists, miracles too are “natural,” but in that case words would become meaningless, as it would then be impossible to make the essential distinction between blind or unconscious causes and the supra-conscious Cause, the source of all consciousness and of all power. Scientists confuse the miraculous with the irrational and the arbitrary.
I wanted to throw in a discussion of what the Christian knows that the scientistic atheist does not and can never know, but we're out of time, so you'll have to think that through yourself. A hint: awareness of the Absolute, and the consequences flowing therefrom.