My solid understanding is that the entirely of the mainstream modern culture (all institutions) is nowadays net-evil.
(And when there is good in mainstream modern culture - as with JRR Tolkien; that which is good is only recognised and responded-to by a tiny minority of those who support and sustain it. the great bulk of those who like Tolkien's work understand it in ways that are compatible-with or supportive-of mainstream modern evil.)
Not many people agree with me that this is true; and most of those who do agree on this 'diagnosis' are conservative 'restorationaists' of one sort or another - who want to restore one or another previous, earlier state of society. I don't agree - I think what is needed is something never-before-seen - unprecedented, not just in specifics but new in terms of fundamentals.
So I am not a restorationist - because I see human destiny in a linear, developmental fashion: we are meant to, and will, change qualitatively through time; and this cannot and should not be reversed - although it can be, and is being, stalled and stopped. Consequently, I do Not see history as cyclical; and I regard our current situation as, in essence, unique and unprecedented.
For restorationists, which previous social state will serve as the model varies according to ideological, spiritual or religious views; but I am sure that the only 'answer' is religious; so I reject all forms of diagnosis of social ills that fail to recognise the fact that any future and overall-better society must be religious in its primary value and organisation.
There are also various views concerning what specific religion is needed; and on this I take the view that it needs to be Christian, specifically.
OK - so I regard mainstream modern society as net-evil and strategically aiming at more evil; but I see the answer as lying in some 1. unforseen and 2. religious and 3. specifically Christian solution.
This, then, is my overall stance; and so far as I know, hardly anybody else ever has shared this perspective, and extremely few people (a mere handful) who are currently alive.
This just-is the situation, as I see it: almost everybody is fundamentally wrong about the most important things in life!
Just to be clear...
The problem with "going back" that I had, in particular with the " our best solution is we go back to the days of Moses and wear robes and sport big beards and live on farms" crowd, is that we already did that, and we're there before. Having been there, we still ended up here. If we go back there, we end up here again.
But meanwhile evil still comes up with newer and better ways. It still evolves forward.
So no. No going back. The past is nearly a score of civilizations collapsing to the same set of mistakes.
Bruce - On the one hand I agree with you that the culture is evil. On the other hand, I'm not always sure of your meaning when you call something "evil". How do you define evil? Moral evil? If you are talking about moral evil, what do you hold as foundational as a moral philosophy?
@NW - By evil I mean that which is opposed to good; e.g. subversive or destructive of good, ultimately that which inverts good. That is, evil is an oppositional term, not a thing in itself.
@NW - Good means aligned with the purpose of God's creation.
@U - Thanks for your comment.
Bruce - I don't mean to belabor my inquiry, but it's an important question. Nietzsche pointed out over a century ago that philosophies embraced by philosophers were more reflections of the man than reality itself. So I know from reading your blog, you acquire your views on things through some sort of intuitive/meditative process you call primary thinking. All well and good, but that isn't objective at all. I as well have intuitions that are also not objective and I also allow those intuitions to guide my viewpoints to some extent. So what I'm getting at is, how does one know that ones subjective leanings map accurately to the objective real context? Or are we just biased creatures unaware of our own biases? Do you believe there exists objective moral principles (i.e. the golden rule) that we can check ourselves against to avoid buying into an incorrect subjective stance?
@NW - Nietzsche made the metaphysical assumption that there was no divine - so of course everything then had-to-be a reflection of man.
*All* objective assertions are based on intuition - or else unconsciously adopted from tradition/ upbringing/ society. Not to acknowledge this, is simply an error.
So, to have a coherent discussion on these matters means understanding the assumptions behind them, on which they rest - at the level when they are recognised as assumptions.
What comes next will most likely be the temporary triumph of present evil followed by Christ's return. Living under an eternally righteous king has never happened and fits all your parameters. It is a question of when, not if.
Yes, but I think this misses something crucial. I don't believe Christ will sovereignly, himself, make the Bride ready and then return for it. Rather, before Christ returns he will reveal himself to all through his Sons of God, fully mature Christians, who have, with unprecedented Grace being poured out by God, developed their Spirit so completely that they mirror Jesus's character, achieve transfiguration themselves, and then do amazing signs and wonders, beyond anything even in the Bible. And it is they who will bring in the final harvest and make the Bride ready for the Second Coming. And it all could happen very quickly once it gets started. So evil will continue to grow but God's power will begin to manifest in unprecedented ways along with it.
Bruce, absolutely - that makes sense. Some of the metaphysical philosophies I'm familiar with (Catholic Thomism for example) begin with intuitied "first principles" and then reason from them. So there is an intuition about very basic, general things, like the existence of God or various moral principles and so on. You have made on this blog much more spefic assertions, such as the nature of the state of the soul after death. I suppose I can see how one could arrive at such beliefs through a combination of intuition and reason. Arriving at such conclusions seems to me though, to be risky and fraught with the potential for self-deception and error. So maybe what I'm asking about how you one avoids such errors. Are there correct "first princiiples" that prevent downstream reason/intuition errors?
My intuition tells me that part of the answer is purity of intent. If one sincerely seeks the truth, my suspicion is the door will be opened. That said, one of the most fascinating observations about the world is that so many intelligent, ostensibly sincere individuals arrive at drastically different worldviews and philosophies. As you say I suppose it is all a matter of assumptions. On the other hand my intuition also suggests to me that it seems unlikely that so many people are so drastically wrong due to corruption and impurity of motive. Like the truth is something deeper, possibly beyond the reach of our intutions.
@NW - Intuition generally works by evaluating the ideas one comes-across; or sets of ideas (at least initially). So I began with deism, theism, then Christianity; then (after about four years) Mormon Christianity, and then I began to take aspects from Arkle, Barfield, Steiner, William Blake... and the process continues. At each stage I weigh intuitively more specific aspects.
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