Monday, 10 December 2018

John the Baptist was needed so that Jesus could know-of and consciously choose his destiny

I have often written here about the fascinating yet enigmatic person of John the Baptist, who is presented as an extremely important figure (second only to Jesus) in the Fourth (and other) Gospels.

But the nature of John's importance, the deep reasons why he was crucially important; are, by my judgement, poorly explained in the sources I have encountered.

I have previously suggested several explanations of John's importance - but now I think I have finally reached to the bottom of the matter!...

The key is that Jesus was only potentially the Messiah until John recognised then baptised him.

So, Jesus was already a sinless Man, perfectly aligned with God's plan and purposes, 'destined' from before his incarnation to be the Messiah; but as such, Jesus could not recognise himself as the Messiah.

Jesus needed to be told that he was the Messiah - and he needed to be told by a person of authority, discernment and total honesty: that is by a true prophet.

John was the greatest religious figure of his day, universally respected and revered, probably the only acknowledged Hebrew prophet for hundreds of years. John was uniquely qualified to recognise Jesus as the Messiah, and to tell him and be believed.

Only then could Jesus actively choose to embrace his destiny; and he did so by requesting baptism from John. We could say that, at the moment of baptism, Jesus (as an adult, of supreme intelligence and scholarly knowledge) made a fully 'informed' decision now to become who he already-was potentially.

And at this moment, John saw the spirit descend upon Jesus and stay upon him: at the baptism Jesus became divine.

And John's work was completed.

John 1: [29] The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. [30] This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. [31] And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. [32] And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. [33] And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost. [34] And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.

Christianity in relation to paganism and monotheism

We can analyse paganism, monotheism and Christianity from the perspective of the implied relationship between Man and the divine (and an understanding of the nature of divine). 

Paganism is hugely varied, each tribe and locality having its own version, and most are fluid and loosely defined - with no real attempt to hold it constant. The gods (the many little 'g'-gods) are more powerful than, but not qualitatively different from, Men. The gods are subject to the same virtues and sins as Men; have the same kind of strengths and weaknesses - therefore the religion is one of divination and propitiation - of Men discerning the will of the gods, and attempting to influence the gods by flattery, sacrifice etc
Monotheistic religions (such as Judaism and Islam) have a creator deity - a capital-G God; and the practice is underpinned by obedience to that God (obedience to laws/ rules/ rituals as revealed by prophets who are merely mouthpieces of the divine). The relationship between Man and God is one of the infinitely-lesser submitting to the incomprehensibly-greater - and how people feel about this is pretty irrelevant. The religion is therefore one of practice, not belief; and the ethic one of strict adherence to the rules of practice.

(There is no divination or sacrifice in monotheism, as such - since God is so infinitely removed and great; that it would be impossible to understand, predict or influence such a God.)

What of Christianity? Well, although self-identified Christianity is often corrupted by Monotheistic or Pagan elements - the intrinsic nature of Christianity is different from either.

Christianity focuses on Jesus - and on the one hand Jesus was not 'a god' (as he might be in paganism - e.g. a god in human form) - because, for Christians, Jesus lived in a reality where there was a unified creator deity - a prime God who was not Jesus.

But Jesus was divine, and brought the teaching that all Men could (by following him) also become divine (via death and resurrection).

In what sense was Jesus, the Man, also divine? Because by some means - such as the divine spirit impregnating Jesus's Mother, or the divine spirit descending upon Jesus at baptism - Jesus the Man was made god. But not just made-into 'a' god; but made a god-creator who could, and does, work-with God the prime creator.

Therefore Jesus became 'fully divine'; that is, he eventually joined-with the divine creator in the work of creation, while remaining a Man; and Jesus made it possible for other Men to do the same.

So, Christianity takes the understanding of God as the single, original prime creator from monotheism; and takes the continuity between gods and Man (the possibility of a man becoming a god) from paganism, and made a new category of god-creator - the two being brought-together in and by the centrality of Jesus Christ.

(Of course, I am assuming here that Christianity is Obviously Not a type of monotheism; which many theologians have always asserted it is - fudging the issue by Trinitarian incoherence. Evidence for the wrongness of the idea of Christian monotheism is that when Christianity has been so regarded, it takes on the qualities of monotheism - becomes essentially like Judaism and/ or Islam; that is a religion of obedience, law, ritual, submission - as contrasted with being distinctively 'Christian', as Jesus was and taught.)

Sunday, 9 December 2018

There is no plan or blueprint for how to live well - 'the next step' becomes evident, a step at a time

People (including myself) often seek for a blueprint of how to live, a set of methods, a step-by-step plan so that we know in advance what to do and when. But this is an error.

The proper attitude to life is one that acknowledges as ideal a kind of steady state in which we are living, experiencing and learning; and therefore changing. As we change, this is growth. As we grow, the next step in growth becomes evident in a way that it could not have been before we grew.

We can know this is happening by our experience of this growth - with an ability to look back with a new comprehension. But, however far we have come - we can only look one step forward.

This growth is 'theosis' or 'divinisation' - the becoming more like to God, by learning from our mortal experiences, according to God's purpose in creation. This being the way that we grow in spiritual maturity towards the ultimate goal of being grown-up children of God.

The goal is very long term, and we are transformed in the process, so a blueprint is impossible. Because each person is different (from the beginning, and as a consequence of different experiences) there can be no generic stepwise plan - we, personally, can only know our next step after taking the previous step and receiving the validation of experience. 

The first step is actually to experience, self-consciously, a higher level of consciousness; and to learn from that.

And that first step leads onto the next.

Life is not something to delay, we ought not to wait to enter-into life; we need to be doing life now, and all of the time; as fully as we are now capable of doing.

No matter how low we start; once begun, that capability will increase, incrementally. 

That is what we are here for.

Note: Reflections after reading that most dense and pregnant chapter of William Arkle's A Geography of Consciousness, 1974 which is entitled 'Astrology'.

Incarnation is part of the ordering of creation

For there to be order (rather than chaos) there is organisation. Part of this is Time, and the other part is Space.

We began as spirits, living in Time; and when we become incarnated - as mortal Men on earth - we become organised in Space.

Initially, it is only possible to incarnate in mortal form, with bodies that change, decay, are subject to disease and death; but - thanks to Jesus Christ - we may choose to be resurrected into Life Everlasting, with immortal and indestructible bodies.

This represents a further - and sufficient - ordering of reality.

As mortals we grow in consciousness, experiencing change in the environment of other beings, and also in our selves, our bodies; after resurrection we continue to experience the first but not the second.

This is mostly a great enhancement, and sets-us up for eternity - but there is also a closing-off of certain possibilities that we have in mortal life - the experiences of living with internal change due to our own bodily growth, development, disease, degeneration and death.

Saturday, 8 December 2018

Silly Wizard - Donald McGillavry

I was a big fan of Electric Folk music in the 1970s - this is perhaps the only truly first rate example of the genre I have heard performed since that era. It features the (literally) incredible accordeon playing of Phil Cunningham.


Note: I lived for several years in Scotland (Penicuik and Glasgow) - so I understand the dialect... you may not! 

Old Left-New Left... Modernity-Postmodernity - surface changes masking a constant deep motivation against God

It is easy to make too much of the change in mainstream socio-politics that happened in the mid-1960s. Leftism has been increasingly mainstream in The West for a couple of hundred years - but within that project, there was a change in the 1960s; and on the surface it seemed to be a qualitative change.

Some contrasts... The Old Left was about economics, the New Left was about the sexual revolution and antiracism; equality of opportunity versus affirmative action and group preferences; nationalisation versus globalisation; planned economy versus free trade; protectionism versus mass-unlimited population migration; the native workers versus immigrants...

For a while the idea became fashionable that this was a shift from modernism to postmodernism; where modernism was seen as a kind of Enlightenment Rationalism and progress; and postmodernism was seen as relativism, loss of all values, loss of all explanations, loss of all sense of purpose and progress - a world of change but no meaning.

However, although the surface change was indeed qualitative; underneath the change from Old to New Left/ modernism to postmodernism, can be seen as an unfolding of the same underlying impulse.

How do we know this? Because many millions of individual people on The Left, en masse, made this exact transition in their beliefs; and very few of them refused to do so.

The same individuals who in their youth championed white, native-born, working class men as the oppressed 'proletarian' heroes of society... by the time they reached old age had demonised this group (as racist/ sexist/ homophobic/ Christian bigots etc.), and now champions everybody except them.

Another example is eugenics. Before 1960 pretty much All intellectual Leftists (except Roman Catholics) were ardent advocates of eugenics: i.e. of state control of human fertility as an essential means towards improving genetic quality, and therefore social functioning. By 1970, the same group of people, often the same individuals, regarded eugenics as a hallmark of 'Right Wing', 'Fascist' evil; and anyone proposing eugenics was aggressively, often violently, excluded from public discourse ('deplatformed' as people would now call it).

The same happened with 'feminism'. Before the transition; Leftists regarded feminism as subsumed within socialism (racism too) - the sexes being unified by equality of opportunity. From the 1970s, women were increasingly split from men as a victim group with opposite interests than men; and with different laws and rules applicable to women and men; so as first to equalise sex outcomes, then to make women's outcomes higher than men's - in one area of public action after another. The ideal of equality has been replaced by an ideal of inequality.

Yet although these aims (sex equality of opportunity versus sex inequality of outcome) were extremely different, almost opposite; Leftists remained Leftists - with very few exceptions they obediently followed 'the party line', and (in their multi-millions) set-aside honesty and consistency.

And Many millions more joined them - as the Left took-over all mainstream politics, government, all all major social institutions.

The fact that people on the Left so easily, seamlessly, changed - and even reversed - their superficial opinions and their policies; and did so dishonestly, claiming that they were not doing so; tells us that the roots and motivation of Leftism are not at the level of obvious opinions and policies.

The roots of Leftism are much deeper - and are, indeed, at the level of metaphysics. That is, at the level of basic assumptions concerning the nature of reality.

The basic assumptions of Leftism have unfolded over the past couple of centuries (and were foreshadowed before that time). The most fundamental assumption is a set of linked assumptions rejecting divine agency and the immaterial. These are along the lines that there is no God, and no objective truth, beauty or morality; that the material (perceptible, measurable) realm of things is the only reality; and that human emotion (pleasure-suffering) is the only valid measure of goodness (aka 'utilitarianism').

(You should note that materialism and utilitarianism are ultimately contradictory - because other-people's emotions do not exist according to materialism, being objectively unobservable, not-measurable, unquantifiable; nonetheless this combination of assumptions is universal in mainstream public discourse for the past century and more.)

On the positive side of 'what was wanted', Leftism probably began with pacifism among mid-18th century Nonconformists, the abolition of slavery spreading from this same group, and a mounting demand for relief of the new kind of poverty and misery that was caused by the industrial revolution by means of state redistribution of wealth...

And from the beginning the sexual revolution was a strong element, although initially only among the upper class radicals (e.g. Lord Byron, Shelley); who immediately used a political rationale for advocating their own practice of unbounded sexual relations outside of religious marriage. 

We need to recognise that, even though its early advocates espoused some good causes, and many individuals at the low level of the movement were basically good-but-misguided people, the Left always was from its very roots a basically false (hence evil) human motivation.

By excluding or marginalising the divine perspective; by placing mortal life, materialism and human emotion as the focus of human evaluation and action; it was always inevitable that Leftism would unfold to short-termist hedonism, despair, and nihilism - and would lead its adherents (at first unconsciously, but increasingly explicitly) to seek their own self-annihilation - both in general - by working actively for the destruction of their own marriages, families, institutions and nations) - and individually.

This self-annihilation is rationalised by a publicly enforced cancerous compassion. Compassion is, objectively, a minor virtue intended as a duty in relation to a person's immediate circle of family, friends and neighbours. But post-60s Leftism has raised 'universal, unbounded compassion' to be the ultimate virtue to be striven-for - and, of course, this is a form of suicide - both at a group level and for individuals.  

Self-annihilation therefore also operates personally - with its compassion-driven focus on abortion/ infanticide, and euthanasia for an expanding and open-ended scope of indications. The ideal of unbounded non-procreative sex is also justified by compassion for those with 'unconventional' desires.

Ultimately there is the increasingly-accepted/ wanted transhumanist project of destroying and replacing humans (by drugs, genetic engineering, implanted social-mass media, microchipping, downloading etc) - again, advocated mainly on the basis of compassion for suffering.

All these 'new' phenomena have their motivational roots in the centuries-old and basic assumptions of Leftism; they were implicit from its very beginnings.

Which tells us that the origin of Leftism lies in the demonic; in immortal purposive evil with foresight.

And this is why Leftism has been by far the most successful of all evil strategies in the history of Mankind.

Friday, 7 December 2018

What makes modern people 'naturally' disbelieve in God?

(My answer; speaking from the experience of several decades, in the middle years of my life, as an atheist...)

The fact that all modern public discourse excludes the divine.

As a modern child grows up, he becomes socialised, he becomes trained in modern public discourse of many kinds: school work, everything to do with the mass media, sports, pastimes, hobbies... and all of these exclude the divine.

It Just Isn't There. The lexicon of objects that function in the system exclude the divine; the causality of the system excludes the divine.

As the child reaches adolescence - these modes of thought become more dominant, and they become habitual to the extent of being simply taken for granted; and eventually they become so habitual as to be extremely difficult to break out from.

This process is exacerbated in the world of work, where nearly all jobs exclude the divine (in whatever social system, the law, medicine, science, government, politics, police, the military, engineering - as well as the mass media and academia) - becoming competent means internalising these 'materialist' ways of thinking; thus, excluding the divine.

So, the more expert I became at public discourse; from the level of everyday socialising, through my education and professional practice in science, medicine, literature, philosophy... The better I got at 'work' and interacting; the more I internalised the systems... the more adept I became at working-within and extrapolating-from the systems... the less time and space there was in my thoughts for God. 

So, modern people - after early childhood - tend to become habitual atheists at the level of their thought processes.  And this happens most to those who work in the congitive realms; and tends to increase with expertise.

And long-term, frequently practised, and socially rewarded habits can be very, very, Very difficult to break (if/ when you want to break them, which too-few do).

From such considerations, I regard modernity (with its division and specialisation of function) as intrinsically hostile to the divine; hence it carries the seeds of its own destruction. 

Who is the best blogger?

Blogs are clearly on the way out, and many of the best bloggers have gone - but let's just express our opinion on who is - overall - the best blogger...

Leaving-out myself (!) and also my co-bloggers at Albion Awakening and Junior Ganymede (because we are really the best :) - then who do you think is the best?

My vote goes to Vox Day (Theodore Beale) - whose blog is quite remarkable in terms of posting very frequently, across a wide range, and with great 'originality' - in the sense that he is so inventive and so good at discovering, elaborating and refining ideas.

I can understand it when people don't like his pugnacious style, but that also has its compensations - and is anyway far outweighed by his (rare!) bedrock virtues of honesty and solid, evangelical Christianity.

It should-not need to be said (now, or ever) that this endorsement does not imply that I agree with Vox on everything, or even on most things - because I don't agree with anybody in the world on everything (I am in a minority of one); but I do agree with him on the important issues, and that is what matters; and that is why I read Vox Popoli more often than any other blog.

But the question is - what is Your favourite blog, and why?

Thursday, 6 December 2018

How Albion failed to learn from 1970s utopianism and disillusion

...When I turned 17 I did not bother learning to get a driving license, because I was confident that cars would not be around for much longer: I believed that the demise of our industrial society was imminent, and that was what I wanted. I envisaged a village-level and more communal life - much like Medieval times but minus the Warrior Lord and the Priests.

This absence was important, because I understood that without this needless and counter-productive expenditure of resources (money, food, time and energy) I thought we could:

1. Raise the standard of living of the ordinary peasants above subsistence to a reasonable sufficiency.

2. Increase the amount of discretionary leisure from minimal to ample.

3. And, thereby, enable people to do what they deeply wanted to do; which was (I thought) to replace the business of fighting and religion with a great expansion of arts and crafts - and, implicitly, sexual freedom too, although I did not articulate this.

...As the seventies proceeded (the balance inflecting probably from 1976-7) was that this vision gradually soured and darkened - and dystopia became more and more dominant; and has stayed.

The village idyll of my hopes was replaced by a rotten pastoralism that saw the countryside as a fake, concealing dark and sinister goings-on - mind-controlled rustics engaged in ritual mutilation, rape, murder; or secret business and government agencies concealed in forests or underground. A totalitarian future of surveillance, manipulation, poisoning, destruction, massification...

The hedonic, creative paganism of my vague daydreams was replaced by instinctive savagery or actually demonic activities...

 Read the whole thing at Albion Awakening.

Wednesday, 5 December 2018

The Byzantine cure for bureaucratic cancer

It is interesting that the Eastern Roman ('Byzantine') Empire, which lasted for 1000 years in Constaninople - much longer than any other polity since Christ - managed to get the benefits of bureaucratic organisation but without suffering its tendency to unchecked metastatic growth; by the simple means of restricting membership to eunuchs.

Life as a eunuch bureaucrat was pretty good - and although you were not allowed to be Emperor, you could rise to being Patriarch of the church (e.g St Ignatios) or chief general of the Imperial army (Narses); and (on average) you would live longer (and healthier) than an uncastrated man.

On the other hand...

Note: A further important factor in its longevity was the highly religious devoutness of Byzantine life, which seems to have continued pretty-much unabated throughout the 1000 years. This motivated people; and to a significant unified and directed this motivation outside the individual mortal life and indeed the world itself; which maintained cohesion and kept a check on wholly-selfish short-termism.

Any-more More-Questions?

Following my offer to answer reader's questions, and the follow-up...

Are there any more?

Note: If you want; you might like to pretend (for the sake of the exercise) that I am a some kind of Eastern guru (!) who allows one question per pilgrim, and who will therefore ask each person: 'What is your question?'

Supposedly, this restriction to a single question is implicitly intended to provoke reflection in the asker; so that he must first learn what it is that most matters to him - and in that lies most of its benefit of the whole process, regardless of the answer given.

The consequence is, perhaps, that once you have decided for sure The Question you will ask, you could, maybe should, at that point turn-around, leave the queue, and go home.

But then what would you tell the folks? 

Mainstream modern metaphysics: Goodness is Vitally Important! (But it is not real)

Mainstream modern morality includes such as: Love is Important... Justice, Compassion, Equality... these things are Terribly Important. Art and Culture is important, Science is Important. Ethics are Even-More Important...

But none of them are really real.

Because there is no Objective reality - or if there is we can't know it. There is no purpose to human life; or if there is it is just something we make-up each for ourselves (which means there is zero  objective purpose).

Because, for mainstream modernity; if something can't be seen or heard or touched - if something can't be detected and  measured by Scientific Instruments - then it is not a really real part of the Universe...

So that rules-out God, the soul, morality, beauty; and it rules-out truth (which is imperceptible) - so it invalidates all-of-the-above.

What then is real? Feelings are real! But Other People's Feelings aren't really real because they can't be seen, heard or touched - or detected by Scientific Instruments... Other People's Feelings are just something we guess, or read-about in the mass media or official propaganda - who must also be guessing it.

So what is real? My feelings, here and now: they are really-real ... But I'm not sure about my feelings in the past - just memories, and they may be wrong; and I have no idea about my future feelings either.

But are my here-and-now feelings really important? ... given that they may be gone in an hour; or that they may have been manipulated by other people, or drugs, or be a result of sickness...?

Clearly my feelings here-and-now are the only real thing, therefore the only important thing; and yet I also know that they are Not really-real, not Objective and can't be measured; hence my feelings are also trivial.

This whole modern Public World is based on assertions - very strong assertions backed up with threats and force -  concerning what other-people want, what other-people like and dislike, what makes other people happy or causes them suffering. Assertions about what must 'therefore' be done to these other-people. Yet the basic modern assumptions tell us that we cannot ever know such things - and that these are all, therefore, purely-arbitrary assertions.

The entirety of the modern world, therefore, is - By It's Own Criteria - based-upon Nothing-But arbitrary assertions.

All the asserted 'good' things of our mainstream world - such as social justice, feminism, antiracism, the sexual revolution - all of these things (and every other possible thing) are Not really-real - by our own modern assumptions and definitions.

This is the normal, mainstream, modern 'Western' world that I am describing - as it appears in all public discourse - the mass and social media; in political, governmental, legal, medical, educational, legal, business and all other public domains.

Everything Important is unreal; and the only reality is unimportant. 

And people wonder why we are voluntarily going extinct, and seeking (by several routes) our own annihilation?...

The System has learned, and now focuses on corrupting leaders

I caught the headline that yet another effective leader of dissent against The System has been neutralised (Nigel Farage of UKIP - the man who is credited/ blamed by the mass media for getting the EU referendum which led to the Brexit vote).

This is something that The System has learned from the 1960s counter-culture dissent; dissenting movements depend on their leaders, and leaders can be corrupted and co-opted.

This is especially easy when the leaders are Not religious - as all modern leaders (including/ especially of mainstream Christian churches) are Not-religious; because their principles are unrooted, based on personal expediency and pseudo-calculated utilitarian considerations; and therefore their view will always shift over time; and this shift can be induced toward The System in response to bribery/ subsidy, and propaganda/ perception-control...

Pressure, threats and coercion of leaders is also possible, and effective; but seldom required (except in an emergency) - and a leader who has been gradually corrupted into obedience (for what they suppose to be 'good reasons') is more useful to The System (e.g. functioning as a Fifth Columnist, an infiltrator, a subverter) than one who has been terrified into obedience.

All modern leader with significant influence over important groups are now on the side of The System. There aren't any exceptions (at least, not in the UK). If we think there are exceptions, we are very-probably wrong - if not now, then soon. 

Anyway, unless change happens very rapidly and completely; leaders will be corrupted and turned. We know this, and ought to expect it; and we ought to work from the implications.

But it seems that not many people yet do; and almost everybody still expects to be led to a better world.

Until that expectation stops; the prospect seems certain to be worse than the present, and much worse than it needs to be.

Tuesday, 4 December 2018

SJWs, deplatforming and political correctness aren't at all new; just more widespread

Just a point of information - political correctness and deplatforming by SJWs began from the middle 1960s in relation to (physical) attacks on IQ researchers such as the (world famous and highly prestigious) academics Hans Eysenck and Arthur Jensen - and these have continued since.

The reason that IQ researching psychologists was first to be singled-out for suppression; was that the core of mainstream Left (labour, liberal, socialist, democrat) political agenda since the middle sixties has been driven by outrage at the 'injustice' of evidence of group inequalities in salary/ education/ status/ health and other outcomes; inequalities which can be explained-away by differences in average intelligence and personality.

The evidence for this is vast and (by normal and rigorous standards) conclusive - so the research had to be suppressed, and it has been suppressed; by means of demonising, attacking and deplatforming the researchers and publicists.

This is important if we want to understand the current daily and increasing deplatformings, service denials and sackings of a wide swathe of even vaguely (or merely allegedly) dissident individuals and groups.

The endlessly cyclical world of radical left theorists

I've been dipping into the world of radical left theorists again recently (which I used to know quite well, sometimes from the inside) - and the most dismaying thing I found was that they have learned absolutely nothing. The names of the 'master theorists' being referenced change and rotate; but they are still talking about capitalism!

It is almost quaint to realise that there are thousands of such theorists earnestly discussing capitalism, every hour of every day; in meetings, in magazines and academic journals, in books and blogs... they are still organising/ supporting/ memorialising campaigns, boycotts, marches, strikes, sit-ins, protests and publicity... and they all still blame 'capitalism'.

What is so weird is that they are completely unaware they they themselves are a significant driver of exactly those cultural phenomena (especially the system of total bureaucracy) whose workings-out they expend such energy in exposing and analysing.

They diagnose many of the same things which I also regard as the baddest things in modern society; but they put it all down to Big Business, to 'neoliberalism', to profit-seeking, to 'free markets', competition etc. etc.

It is incredible! In other words, the whole thing is blamed on something which barely exists, and has - like everything else - been crushed almost to death by the totalitarian linked-bureaucracy-media System in which radical leftist theorists personally (as well as collectively) play such an important part.

Indeed, the successful leftist-theorists always become absorbed into exactly this System, and get senior managerial and advisory positions in the bureaucracy, and a harvest of cultural and official accolades.

They see this everywhere, again and again; and yet they have learned nothing! The decades roll past, and they learn nothing.

It is this kind of thing that makes me realise there is something very important missing from the very centre of our culture - so many, many people go for so so very, very long (their whole lives) - reading, discussing, travelling - and they learn absolutely Zero from the experience...

Unless getting more and more cynical, disillusioned, nihilistic and despairing counts as learning.

Metaphysical meme warfare

The idea of using 'memes' in the spiritual and culture war is a good one - so long as the aim is to change thinking rather than to impact mainstream mass and social media.

And, if we agree that the best or only hope is a mass and leaderless awakening, then any effective meme needs to work at an individual level with implications, as well as implying some kind of social consequences.

From that respect the 'Deus Vult' (God will it) crusader meme is useless in a world where the mainstream Christian churches are corrupt and converged - since it implies an already existing army-for-God which we might join.

Or 'MAGA' (Make America Great Again) is hopeless; because the USA is (here, now) profoundly divided about what it is; and Greatness is a weasel word that includes lots of bad, indeed terminally destructive, things. It also leaves-out all reference, even implicit, to 'the one thing needful'.

So, both of these fail to begin with an individual, and they make 'action' a matter of subscribing to some organisation or institution - in a world where it is exactly these groups that are leading us to damnation.

A failed Christian meme from a few decades ago, but persisting a long while, was: "Jesus Loves You". On the positive side is the word 'is' - which is the main point of it. Jesus 'is', not just 'was'; and another positive feature is 'You'-personally - it invites a personal relationship.

Of course, the effect faded and the phrase became empty (and the concept of Love was swiftly and very fully subverted - with the help of The Beatles and much of mainstream pop music and culture); but perhaps Jesus Loved You helped fuel that small but real evangelical Christian revival among youth of the late sixties, early seventies...

My understanding is that the root of our Big Problem is our metaphysical assumptions about reality; which have eliminated any possibility of meaning, purpose, or a personal relation with the world. So memes ought to address these. Then, if they were effective, people would recover their motivation and courage. 

The kind of thing that is needed is something - not exactly but along-the-lines-of - "The world is alive, the world is beings."

Or: "Your soul is divine, your soul is free - so choose."

Or, the syllogism-like slogan: "Jesus is God, Jesus is a Man - Man may be god."

Or: "If you want everlasting life: follow Jesus."

That is the level, that is the brevity and simplicity; the trick is the meme's pregnancy... the capacity to take-root, inspire, en-courage, unfold in the desired direction.

If there is to be a Good 'politics of the future' it will be incredibly simplistic

The age of complex politics - politics you needed to study and learn - is past, long past. And probably that's a good thing; probably that it the proper path.

The past 50 years has seen politics degenerate into a collection of dumb and destructive slogans - mostly-directed against marriage, family, and even sexual reality - what we need to replace this is a collection of dumb and constructive slogans.

(By 'slogans' I mean 'principles' - but of the kind that can be reduced to a slogan.) 

(And when I say 'collection' I mean a very small, simple, easily memorable, and coherent collection.) 

They need to be dumb if politics is to be anything other than an imposition by a grossly-corrupt, increasingly purposively-evil, intellectual elite.

As often noticed, any movement that requires leaders can and will be destroyed (or subverted and co-opted) - and if a movement doesn't require leaders, it must be comprehensible by a great mass of people of ordinary, and less than ordinary, ability.

What is lacking here-and-now is motivation; and ordinary people will only be motivated by something simple-enough that it can be fully grasped and known as a whole; and if it is to be Good, then simple-enough to be known intuitively as true.

If this does happen, therefore, intellectuals (including you and me, probably) will hate it reflexly - not least because they/ we will be marginalised, not needed, not used. We will be asked to subscribe to something that strikes us as ridiculously simplistic; and we will find it difficult to so subscribe - it will so very be easy to 'pick apart' and ridicule or fear.

Nonetheless, it is either simplism or doom.

And if it is to be Christian, the same applies... it will be either a simple Christianity, in which it is clear and easy to understand what is asked and wanted; or else we won't get Christianity at all, but something else clearer and simpler and (thus) more motivating for ordinary people (and I think I can guess what).

Monday, 3 December 2018

Why are bureaucrats so stupid? Evil cannot understand, or create (while it is 'being evil')

There are, of course, plenty of 'evil geniuses' in the sense of people who are (overall) evil while also being creative geniuses; however, I think such people are 'being good' when they make their creative discoveries; because when people are 'being evil' they are incapable of knowing reality, thus incapable of work of genuinely creative genius.

This, indeed, in the normal situation - since we are all a mixture of good and evil; although the proportion does vary widely.

That is, the 'good people' people are aligned with the divine most of the time, and only seldom opposed to God/ Good/ Creation; while evil people are the other way around - and most people are somewhere in the middle.

(It is in exactly this sense that the devil is described as a liar and Father of Lies - for purposively evil beings, dishonesty is not merely strategic or expedient; it is intrinsic - because truth is inadmissible.)

To be a genius, in an ultimate sense, is to be thinking in universal reality; thus to comprehend reality; and the creative aspect is participating in the ongoing work of creation.

This is a model that is useful in explaining a common experience that when people are being-evil, they cannot understand truth - even when it is very simple and obvious.

I have had this experience many times in my life - except that I usually failed to understand the reason why a person could not understand something so clear and simple. I now recognise that their failure to understand was because they were being evil, hence untruthful in a deep and primary way.

I have often seen this among bureaucrats (including academics and doctors performing bureaucratic roles)... I might explain something very straightforward and obvious, some-thing that could be understand easily by almost anyone; yet after a while I recognise that the bureaucrat just doesn't understand the point - and indeed is getting angry, or perpetually changing the subject.*

This is a root cause of how bureaucracy is so deeply and ineradicably stupid; because it is so deeply and intrinsically evil. 

At a psychological level, I think this incomprehension occurs because the evil individual will not allow true thoughts to pass-through his mind. This entails stubbornly and defiantly failing to comprehend, resisting comprehension of, even very simple and clear propositions when they conflict with the prevalent evil.

And of course it blocks even the possibility of creativity - which depends on realism; and is probably one of several causes for the extreme anti-creativity of modern life.

*At this point the bureaucrat may make a reference to the point at issue being 'your opinion' - because they are unable to recognise that it is simply true (i.e. a simple inference from universally accepted premises). Often, this happens because truth is being 'trumped' by an ideology that says this point cannot be true, therefore only someone opposed to the ruling ideology - therefore someone 'evil' - would insist upon the point.  This is the explanation of those many 'hate facts' that have become so important in mainstream culture over the past 50 years: they are instances of truths that cannot be thought by evil minds.

Sunday, 2 December 2018

Is there anyone who believes in the reality of Jesus and then rejects him?

It isn't impossible so perhaps there is, perhaps many - but it's not something I have known for myself. What I encounter is the belief that Jesus is a myth or a fake... "and anyway I don't want what he offers".

(But have they really considered what he offered? Hasn't the belief that he is a fake blocked it?)

It should be possible to evaluate the two things separately - one: whether there was Jesus, and what he brought - and two: whether we, personally, actually want that. Two things that seem separable - but are they ever separate, in actual experience?

Of course people get wrong or distorted ideas about what Jesus was or wanted, and this is surely inevitable even if there was not such a mass of disinformation and deception.

Blaise Pascal remarked that all Men would want Christianity to be true, if they knew what it was: he knew from a direct personal mystical experience. But how very few people ever seem to get to that point.

Most seem to operate in a permanent haze of confusion, whirling from question to question - did Jesus really exist? What did he say? (And not say?). Is that the best offer? What would I want otherwise? How does this fit with my favourite things in life?

What is mostly missing is any sense of Life, Here, Now; as a baseline, as a basis of comparison. People seem unable to grasp their own lives - they can't think it through, and they can't (or won't admit) a recognition of Life as an instantaneously 'known' whole.... and what that is.

Just a whirring, superficial, passive mass of confusions and contradictions... and a kind of nihilism about any possibility of anything else - not that they have ever tried.

Or even, people that have actually had such an insight, a moment of comprehension; but reject it as personal, subjective, wishful thinking, day dreaming, a momentary psychosis or whatever... They have some vague idea that if it had been really-real then they would have read about it in the mass media and everybody else would feel exactly the same...

Consider the bounds of life... Many or most people seem to think that it does not make any difference whether 'biological death' is the end of the person, or not. They regard eternal life after biological death as an irrelevant factor in life before death. In sum, they never seem to have felt or experienced the difference it makes, and engage in silly reductions and catch phrases instead... of an 'it's not important' kind.

There are so many possible way that people might understand, yet this idea of what counts, what is important, seems to stymie the lot of them!

And of course Systems lie in all directions to kill any chance of escape! At a deep level we know that to exchange one cage for another is not worth it. If Jesus is believed to have offered merely a more comfortable cage, then I'm not surprised people aren't interested...

But people seem awfully sure that there is nothing but cages to choose between... despite that most of us have experienced something which is not a system but is real: I mean the family.

Saturday, 1 December 2018

The content of mainstream Romanticism (contrasted with Romantic Christianity)

 The Romantic Christianity of William Arkle - inspiring reality behind the mundane surface

Romanticism is very important, indeed inevitable.

Most people regard Romanticism as a reaction to the industrial revolution, or to Enlightenment rationalism - but I regard it as coming from within: as a development of human consciousness. And, as such, part of God's plan for Man.

From the middle 1700s there were early signs (especially in Britain and Germany) of a new consciousness. The invention of the novel by Samuel Richardson, and its rapid and runaway success is a clear example. Romanticism emerged among poets, painters, philosophers, musicians - it was a cultural phenomenon and it has never gone away.

However, most Romanticism is bad, harmful, evil tending; and was and is opposed by traditionalist religious Christians.

A classic story is of a miserable, alienated young man growing up in some kind of strict (often hypocritical) Christian background, enmeshed in 'right wing' attitudes; who seeks more 'life' in terms of extramarital sex (of whatever kind), drugs, crime, and/or radical/ revolutionary politics. Another kind of romanticism favours paganism, and contrasts its naturalness, spontaneity, happiness with the wretchedness of sin-obsessed, negativistic and legalistic Christian churches.

There are many thousands of such stories among novels, movies, TV programmes etc., and new ones emerge all the time. Romanticism of this sort is found in art illustrations, rock and pop music, fashion... just everywhere. This is mainstream Romanticism: typified by sex-politics-intoxication and anti-Christian themes and attitudes.

It is so popular precisely because 'Romanticism taps-into this changed human consciousness; yet it is also a failure. On the one hand mainstream Romanticism cannot be defeated by traditional Christianity because it addresses a need which will not go away; and against it tradition is merely endorsing a life of unavoidable alienation and misery, of boredom and despair. And, anyway, since Romanticism (properly understood) is divinely-driven, Christians should love and embrace it; not fear and fight it.

Yet 250 years and thousands of examples of experience shows us that this mainstream Romanticism is a failure. It leads nowhere better than disillusion or death. It has proved to be helpless against the rise and rise of bureaucracy, and even (via 'transhumanism') feeds-into the advanced plan to make people into robots in a totalitarian machine.

It is this reasoning  that lies behind my advocacy of Romantic Christianity - the principles, in two words - are the inevitability of Romanticism and the truth of Christianity.

Without Christianity, Romanticism is merely psychotherapy by another name, and psychotherapy doesn't work. But without Romanticism Christianity will be undesirable.

Put the two together, however, and we get the best of both worlds: Romanticism rooted in truth, meaning, purpose and the reality of relationships with a loving God and each other; a hope-full Christianity that successfully addresses alienation and despair, and potentially motivates, energises and en-courages us.

Friday, 30 November 2018

Note added on resurrection and Life Everlasting in the Fourth Gospel

I want people to read the Fourth Gospel for themselves - because the primary meaning is in the Whole Thing, and the teachings it references multiple times in different ways - but I have just added some illustrative quotations from the first six chapters to the original post; demonstrating the kind of thing I mean.