Just a couple of points this morning. We'll begin with an aphorism:
An education without the humanities prepares one only for menial occupations.
That was true until the left took over the humanities and transformed them into the subhumanities. Now an education in the formerly liberal arts prepares one for neither menial nor intellectual labor, for one not only knows nothing, but literally less than nothing. Which is only possible for a human, so I suppose we could still call them humanities in an ironic sense.
The point is, the ideological transformation of the humanities results not just in nonsense, but nonsense about human nature. Which is surely the worst kind nonsense, since it colors everything else.
Which is why man should be placed at the top of the so-called Endangered Species List. And who is endangering him? Yes, it is "man," but a certain type of man. This type:
The modern man is the man who forgets what man knows about man (Dávila).
And not just "forgotten," but reprogrammed to believe man is something other than what he is (and always will be).
Coming at it from the other (scientistic) end, Voegelin writes of how "the model of positive science destroys the understanding of the myth for the past as well as the present."
This results in two related psycho-pneumatic derailments, first, a kind of obtuse and concrete literalism in approaching the mythopoetic insights of the past, and second, a failure to appreciate that scientism itself partakes of mythology, only in a totally naive and unreflective way:
The symbols of the myth are cut off, through this attitude, from their basis in the unconscious and are required to legitimate themselves as if they were propositions concerning objects. The myth is erroneously supposed to be meant "literally" instead of symbolically, and consequently appears as naive or superstitious.
We've discussed this sort of incomplete person before. It is as if they've undergone a procedure to sever the right brain from the rest of the neocortex, which results in a kind of soulectomy, being that the input and output of the soul -- reception and exteriorization -- require the nonlinear processing, holistic perception, and symmetrical logic of the right cerebral hemisphere.
Illustration: In the beginning God creates the heavens and the earth. Like anybody could know that! That's just a myth. It's not science!
No, moron, it's not science. Rather, it is the metaphysical basis for the very possibility of science. It is precisely why science only developed in the Christian west.
Regarding scientism (i.e., the naive metaphysicalization of science),
The myth has a fundamental function in human existence and myths will be created no matter what anybody thinks about them. We cannot overcome myth, we can only misunderstand it (Voegelin, emphasis mine).
Exactly. For myth communicates an implicit metaphysic, as in the example above, in which Genesis posits a radically transcendent source of cosmic order and human rationality.
So, scientism is a myth like any other, only worse. But what is the myth "really saying"? In other words, what perennial truths about human nature are being obscured by the prestige of "science"?
An obvious case is Marxism, which is just a Christian heresy dressed up as scientific materialism, what with the original innocence of paradise (primordial communism), fall (private property), redemption-revolution, and the heaven/utopia of the Workers' Paradise on earth, AKA dictatorship of the proletariat.
Thus, Voegelin points out that
Such symbols as "reason," "mankind," "proletariat," "race," "communist society," "world peace," and so forth, are supposed to be different in nature from pagan or Christian symbols because their mythical truth is covered and obscured by the superimposition of the additional myth of science.
Whenever you hear a leftist proclaim his devotion to science, you need to translate it to a love of myth. Note, for example, the mythical assumptions packed into such slogans as Black Lives Matter, or "Love is Love," or "No Human is Illegal," or "All Genders are Whole, Holy, and Good, or "Women's Rights are Human Rights" (which they can't be, since men don't have the right to kill their children), or -- without irony -- "Science is Real." Taken literally these are banalities, but they obviously mean something much deeper and more sinister.
Since the myth does not cease to be myth because somebody believes it to be science, the telescoping of myth and science has a peculiar warping effect on the personality of the believers (Voegelin).
I was thinking of how nowadays, when the Supreme Court is in session, it means that another constitutional convention is taking place, albeit without the participation of the People. Rather, this week, for example, a couple of judicial idiots (Roberts and Gorsuch) decided to impose their scientistic myth on the rest of us, i.e., that the Constitution confers certain special rights on people who are confused about their gender.
This is consistent with Voegelin's description of how
the forces of the unconscious will stream into the form, not of the myth, but of theory or science. The symbols of the myth become perverted into intramundane, illusionary objects, "given," as if they were empirical data, to the cognitive and active functions of man.
But here is the real point that intrigued me, that as a result of this process, "man becomes anthropomorphic." What is meant by this cryptic remark? He expands upon it a few pages later, warning of "the anthropomorphic fallacy of forming man in the image of conscious man," "in an age in which the anthropomorphic obsession has destroyed the reality of man."
We usually think of anthropomorphization as the naive attribution of human traits to animals or inanimate objects. But we can also do it to human beings, in particular, when we isolate man from the divine pole, or enclose him in immanence -- in short, when we deny the intrinsic verticality of the human being.
So, if you think the claim that man is the image and likeness of the Creator is a myth, it has nothing on the rank superstition that man is created in the image and likeness of man.
Back to Sandoz. He writes of how contemporary education
does little to restore the understanding of uniquely human reality. Rather, taken alone, it does the very opposite and helps make human beings an endangered species through obfuscation. Both Nazism and Marxism-Leninism evoke natural science as their paradigm....
The problem, of course, isn't science, but
its perversion into scientism and positivism and, thereby, into methodological and other assumptions about knowledge and reality that fallaciously presume to supply sovereign, even the sole, road to truth. Systematic reductionism and deformation of reality inevitably result.
Every time. Scientistic jokers to the left of me, postmodern clowns to the further left.