I was brooding on the need for a word to encapsulate the basic metaphysical assumption that created reality is living, conscious, purposive - that it is made of Beings; and seeking a term I was fiddling around with Greek roots...
Perhaps 'anthropo' to start with? In the sense of things being more-or-less like Man - and then maybe something about 'consciousness'?
So I looked-up the Greek word for consciousness; and discovered that there was not one; seemingly, the Ancient Greeks had no word, no concept, no need for 'consciousness'...
And then I thought Of course not! I knew that already from Barfield. The Greek consciousness was much less self-conscious, much less-differentiated, much more-immersed in reality (which was self-explanatory). For them reality almost simply given - via the senses. More child-like.
The Ancient Greeks began the historical process of abstraction - but they only began it... it wasn't far advanced.
But the problem remained - a word for the perspective I assume; a conscious version of that world view into which we are all born...
But maybe, therefore, it doesn't need a word, because it isn't a theory?
I think that a word for such a profound concept is inadequate.
One can of course give it a brand name. But that's all any word for it would be. It's not a widget, a semi-arbitrary term that can be plugged into a discussion because the point of the discussion is to understand some entirely different concept.
Technically, such a term would be a specific variation of radical polytheism. It would be subject to all the misunderstandings about polytheism as well as the special difficulties relating to defining the divine character such that there was an essential unity of all gods with God.
It would be unlikely to see general usage, or if it did, would have been redefined to exclude all sense of the intended meaning. So you would have to redefine it every time you wanted to use it anyway, quite eliminating the utility of having such a word.
I think that a better strategy is to define a phrase which can be readily reassembled poetically into shorter (two or three word) references to the initial phrase and thus the initial definition in a given work. Ordinary English words will do, though there is no great objection to throwing in a bit of original Greek if you like.
I sometimes think of the "Logocosmos," riffing off of Victor Frankl's "logotherapy," but perhaps that's a linguistic atrocity. "Meta-thinking" maybe. You need a prefix that suggests vastness, mystery and open-ness.
In the book of Revelations, the visionary describes the throneroom of God with exquisite detail, but doesn't describe He who is on the seat. There's some wisdom in that.
@William - Well, animism is what I used-to call something-like it -
- although some say the term is intrinsically pejorative - in the sense of being applied-to animists by non-animists.
But maybe it would do with a modifier, such as conscious/ cognitive/ active/ agent/ participative animism - or something...
@A - Its not a bad suggestion; but on the whole it makes me aware how pretentious it is to give things a Greek name! And I have never been confident about my understanding of 'logos' - it seems such a Big word, to include So much. Maybe it's best to find some more appropriate simple, 'anglo-saxon' term...
Some lesser ideas: metacosm, meta-spirituality, vivicosm, animescent. Animescent consciousness?
Hmm, as compared with ancient consciousness, modern consciousness is sharp, distinct, bright, incandescent, deliberate, scrutinous, isolated, isolating, alienated, individualistic, self-separated, ruminous, obsessive, focused, categorical, mechanistic etc.
As compared with the dreamy Greeks, we are sharply conscious. To combine them is to do some sort of "sharp dreaming."
There's got to be a word that captures this...
To say that the Ancient Greeks lacked self-awareness is a bit of a stretch. One of their most famous phrases is 'Know Thyself':
'In a discussion of moderation and self-awareness, the Roman poet Juvenal quotes the phrase ['know thyself'] in Greek and states that the precept descended e caelo (from heaven).'
Source : https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Know_thyself
@Luther - you should read what I said more carefully, I didn't say 'lack' - but to get the argument you'd need to read people like Steiner (e.g. Riddles of Philosophy), Barfield (e.g. Poetic Diction) or Jeremy Naydler (Future of the Ancient World).
Animism goes a bit too far. I'm technically an animist myself, I don't see any physical existing matter (or even empty spacetime) that is not imbued with spirit, but Dr. Charlton's system doesn't require full animism nor does animism imply the essential unity of purpose behind all Creation which is essential to the concept.
The fact that the Greeks lacked a singular term for consciousness doesn't mean they weren't aware of it, they just hadn't got round to having a word rather than defining the concept afresh in each discussion of it. And I think that's not a bad thing at all. Our modern penchant for inventing a new term every time someone thinks about a half-baked idea for what they assume is the first time anyone has ever thought of it is not such a great thing. They're just shmeerps. Which are just like rabbits, especially in how they proliferate if left unchecked.
At the very least we should be looking to see if concept already has a perfectly good word for it. Which is more where we are really starting.
I think that "Creation" is actually supposed to imply the sacred nature and divine purpose of the world, but has been corrupted away from that underlying implication over time. Providence, holiness, there are many terms that originally meant "the world we are in is made by God from countless volitional beings devoted to bringing about good." But that meaning seems to gradually empty out of them over time.
Finding such terms in ancient languages and reintroducing them seems harmless enough, but I don't regard it as being particularly essential.
"Cziltangbrone". Larry Niven had a soft-spot for words. It's at least as valid as any other made-up word.
All words lead away from that which they attempt to describe. Not least, because everybody understands something different from the original usage of a word. Words are simply indicators, and being abstractions, do not reveal, but instead, murkily substitute.
The enlightened being observes with slight dismay, the others who persist in using intellect to define that which is indefinable via intellect.
The "Throne Room" of God is core of The Universe. God is not described, because God has no form, other than The Universe and all it contains.
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