Friday, February 19, 2021

Rhetorical Questions & Ultimate Answers

Do the friends of God not quickly recognize one another, even in cyberspace? 

Do the acquaintances of Toots Mondello not exchange furtive glances in the transdimensional tavern, AKA the Tippling Point? 

If, on the vertical path, we are not attracted up and in, are we not drifting down and out? 

And do things not accelerate as they draw near to their end, hence the increasingly florid weirdness of the left?

Is God another name for the principle of non-contradiction?  

Are liberal soy boys and beta males not eunuchs for the Kingdom of Hell?

Is intersectionality the most comprehensive framework for illuminating the mutual influence of intellectual depravity and moral retardation? 

Is leftism a pincer movement between ignorance and mental illness? 

Is the hostility of the progressive mind to biological reality not proof that a vacuum abhors nature?

Is the notion of patriarchy a question of daddy issues on a world-historical scale? Or just another name for parricide? 

Where in the Constitution does it say that people who didn't attend college shouldn't pay for the bad decisions of those who did?

Does the evolution from Obama to Biden not prove that for the left, a stupid president is good but a demented one better?  

These and other questions probably won't be answered as we attempt to build this morning's post. 

Moving on now to God, His Existence and His Nature, Fr. Reginald agrees with the Raccoon that, when it comes right down to it, it's not much of a choice between true God and radical absurdity, for the true man of the left will always choose the latter.

Why radical absurdity? What's the catch? 

We'll get to that as we proceed. We have two volumes and 1,000 pages to blow through, so there will be plenty of time for higher insultainment and principled abuse.

Now, one can be excused for having wrong ideas about God, but to overlook him completely is just plain careless. In atheism, philosloppiness and confidence are directly related:

This means that speculative atheism is an impossibility for any man who has the use of reason and is in good faith. 

That's "faith" in the colloquial sense of a "sincerity which is contrary to deceit," AKA rudimentary intellectual honesty. It also presupposes "use of all the means at [one's] disposal in order to arrive at the truth."

ALL of 'em, which includes vertical, horizontal, subjective (interior), objective (exterior), infrapersonal, personal, interpersonal, transpersonal, artistic, moral, and other means to the End we seek (and which seeks, i.e., attracts, us). 

Now, this is interesting, and not just because I'd been thinking about it before reading the following passage, but is there such a thing as "intellectual" or "philosophical" sin? 

If so, it can't be the same as an honest mistake. Rather, it's a dishonest mistake, therefore not really a mistake at all but a plan. And a devious one at that. 

A sin against right reason is necessarily an offense against the source of reason; to put it another way, as the Prime Directive on the plane of action is to do good and avoid evil, the P.D. of the intellect is to know truth and avoid error. Now go away and be stupid no more!

Having said that, just as not all people are fit for self-government -- see, for example, California -- so too are most people not fit for intellection -- see, for example, California.  Does this mean such people are out of luck, or must move to Texas? Not at all. Montana is also nice, and not as cold.

The bottom line for today is that "The agnostic denial of the possibility of demonstrating the existence of God is, therefore, a heresy."

Not an extrinsic heresy within the bounds of this or that worldview, but an intrinsic heresy for man qua man.  It's universal. No exceptions. Well, except maybe for certain forms of mental illness, organic brain damage, or demon possession.

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Existence on Loan From God

The biggest little words in all of creation must be I and Be, and I suppose in that order. We've written a great deal about the former, not as much about the latter, except insofar as I AM -- which simply means that ultimate reality is, and is personal.  

"Be" is an innocent enough sounding word, and yet, it is of the greatest consequence. For example, every debate, every dispute, every argument at every level, from the silly to the profound, comes down to what is. I say 2+2 is 4. You say math is a white supremacist conspiracy. Which is it? 

Granted, the business of isness can get murkier as we ascend the vertical hierarchy into morality, philosophy, and politics. Or so we have heard from the worldly wise, which is to say, terrestrial tools.

In truth, the higher we ascend, the more we converge upon the apex of absolute and necessary, hence eternal, truths.  No truths can more secure than these, because the very possibility of truth is grounded in them.  

Science, for example, is at the base of an epistemological and ontological pyramid that flows from the top down and back up; in other words, it can trace the real because it is actually retracing it. It doesn't invent, but dis-covers. 

That little prelude was inspired by the title of a chapter in The Sense of Mystery called The Verb "To Be -- Its Sense and Its Scope

Every noun comes down to Is it?, It is, or It isn't. This truism is grounded in the principle of non-contradiction, in that a thing either is or isn't. But so too can every verb be so reduced. To say "Peter runs" is to say "Peter is running," such that running is the caseIt exists.

From here Fr. Reginald highlights the gulf between "to have" and "to be." We, for example, can have truth. But can we be truth, full stop? Can anyone?  

Yes, if I AM is the case, but let's not get ahead of ourselves.  

At the top of the cosmic hierarchy is necessary being: 

Only God is His Existence; He alone is Being Itself and was able to say, "I am that I am," or, "He who is." In contrast, every other being has existence.  

You and I surely exist. But we aren't existence itself. We aren't necessary. We are contingent, wholly dependent upon that which exists necessarily. So, "There is an abyss that separates being and having." 

Now, as alluded to in paragraph two, every dispute comes down to what is and isn't (and what could be, based upon real potential).  

"To be" is "at the basis of all judgments," and is indeed "the soul of judgment." Someone with poor judgment, for example, makes decisions rooted in things that are not the case, that have no being (or potential being, like socialism or "social justice"). 

Conversely, prudence -- rightly ordered practical judgment -- is founded upon conformity with reality: 

true judgment itself corresponds to reality -- that is, to the existence of things.... Judgment is true if it affirms that which is and if it denies that which is not.

For this reason, "Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness....'

It's a little hard to continue, because I just found out that Rush has died. Now, Rush was a great man -- which is to say, he had greatness. He was not greatness itself, of course. Rather, as he was quick to point out, his talent was on loan from God. The loan has been repayed in full, but let's be thankful for all the hearts and minds he transformed with that modest loan of human capital from the First Bank of Realville.

And let's even be thankful for the unhinged hatred his passing will provoke on the left, because of the clarity it provides. Still, woe to the left, who call greatness evil and evil great. 

In this spirit, please ignore any trollish comments today, except insofar as to learn from them the true nature of the left and to recall There but for the grace of God go I....

Monday, February 15, 2021

No Order, No Peace

Again, we're just flippin' through Fr. Reginald's The Order of Things -- and who doesn't want to know how and why things are ordered the way they are? Indeed, you could say that this is the whole business of life -- the business of isness. 

What do I mean by this bold claim? Well, science -- obviously -- is all about the discovery of order at every level of investigation, from physics to chemistry to biology on up. Politics is essentially the science of our collective order, while economics goes to the order of goods and services. As a clinical psychologist, my racket revolves around emotional and cognitive order and dis-disorder. 

The horizontal order of the lower sciences is bisected by a vertical order that extends from and to God -- or, if you prefer a less saturated pneumaticon, O. 

This vertical order is as self-evident as is the horizontal; and when I say "self-evident," I mean that our intellect assents to the proposition the moment it is adequately articulated and understood, unless successfully undermined by crosscurrent factors such as willfulness, intellectual dishonesty, pride, craziness, tenure, or simple stupidity.

For example, we begin -- must begin -- with the senses. We see, touch, hear, smell, or taste the world. But the most perfect sense imaginable doesn't reach the order of intelligibility. My dog's sense of smell is orders of magnitude superior to mine, but she cannot reflect upon the object of the senses and know that she is in contact with an intelligible world.

Which, among other reasons, is why natural selection can never be a sufficient reason for the human intellect. Suffice it to say that an eternity of material shuffling can never attain immateriality. 

Analogously, you could touch or smell every book ever written, but it would not disclose the immaterial meaning of a single word. Nor would every journalist stacked one atop the other add up to a single wise man.

To put it another way, the object of the senses is a subset of the object of the intellect, which is intelligible being. We know this -- and cannot help knowing it -- but an animal does not know it and can never know it. 

To summarize: objects of the senses are objects of the senses, but the object of the intellect is intelligible being, AKA everyTHING and EVERYthing -- the One and the Many, the latter resolving into the former, on pain of an eternally absurd mayaplicity.

I want to flip forward to a chapter that asks the question: The Finality and Realism of the Will: Does the Desire for Happiness Prove God's Existence?

Let's check it out: I want to be happy. Therefore God exists. 

Yup. 

But let's break it down and try to be more specific. Happiness, for example. What is it? It must be an end, but of what? It depends. 

For example, we can all agree that the proper end of the intellect is truth. Attaining it -- accompanied by that subtle clicking noise you hear with your third ear -- should make your thinking part happy. Indeed, it is downright addictive.

Likewise, the proper object of the will is the good. Everyone this side of academia knows that our Prime Directive is to do good and avoid evil. 

So both intellect and will are teleologically ordered. If they weren't, they wouldn't just be dis-ordered but utterly meaningless and absurd. Nihilism, Dude. Truth would be anything you wish it to be, and morality would be reduced to desire. Yes, you would be sealed in leftism, with no way out.

It reminds me of how, when someone dies, it is customary to say "rest in peace." Analogously, the intellect is at peace when it can rest in truth. But you will have noticed how restless is the intellect. This restlessness results in a kind of endless mischief, unless it rests in O. Then the restlessness will be ordered to its final end, and we can enjoy some peace & quiet upstairs.

We all see how this works with desire. We all want stuff, but we also see that no amount of finite stuff can fill that hole: 

It is impossible for man to find true happiness, which he naturally desires, in any limited good, for his intellect, immediately noting THE LIMITATION of this good, then conceives a superior good, and the will naturally desires it (ibid.).  

Yes, this has even happened to me. Come to think of it -- and an earlier version of myself -- too much satiety can even provoke a kind of "distress and disgust" --  which I'll bet underlies a lot of the irrational hatred of capitalism -- as if freedom is the problem rather than dis-ordered desire!

It is as if the intellect says:

"Now that you have attained this sensible delight, which just a moment ago was attractive to you, you can now see that it is poverty itself and incapable of satisfying the profound void found in your heart, something incapable of responding to your desire for happiness" (ibid.).

Poverty itself. I like that. Analogously, go back to what was said about the proper object of the intellect. You can try to pacify it with some ideology such as scientism, socialism, or feminism, but each is Intellectual Poverty Itself. You'll still be hungry, but you'll blame Trump, or the patriarchy, or white Christians, or something.

Fr. Reginald poses the question: 

Can it be the case that a NATURAL desire would be vain, chimerical, senseless, and without any real scope?

Be careful how you respond -- or at least be prepared to live with the consequences -- because if your answer is Yes, then what you want is absurd, nothing is true, and surely neither will make you happy. 

In reality, one proof of God is the desire for something less. We could also say that it's a good practice to live for the present moment and for eternity, not for that old deceiver, Time. 

To be perfectly clear, what I mean is to live for the limited moment bisected by limitless eternity, and time will take care of itself. Hidden springs and subtle pleasures abound here, and the thirst is quenched long before the water ever runs dry.

Peace is "the tranquility of order," so there is peace when we are ordered to our proper end.

No Order, No Peace. The End.