Sunday 4 August 2019

God is 'polarity': From inspiration to intuition

It may be helpful to consider God (the creator, the creat-ing) as, from our perspective, a polarity.

We know God directly and personally in two ways - from outside and from inside: that is, we know God from inspiration (e.g. of the Holy Ghost), and from intuition of the divine within each Man.

The idea of polarity is that both external and internal divine elements are always necessarily present, because we are dealing with an active 'process', ongoing through time; and the polarities are twin poles of that process, generated-by that process.

So God (the divine) is not a structural, separable thing (which would be static, dead, unmoving), but God is a person - and as a person God extends through time.

And we are involved-with God by our inheritance as children of God: we each are, in essence, divine - so we too are (abstractly) processes through time.

We have the divine within each of us (the True Self) and God is also outside of us (as persons, in God and in Men). So there is a kind-of Divine Web - of individuals divine selves in relation with all other divine selves.

In other words, fundamentally, reality is beings in relationships.

As Man has developed to become more conscious, he begins at one pole by being 'inspired' primarily by external sources of divinity; and as Man grows in consciousness he is supposed-to move, voluntarily and by choice, to the other pole of living primarily from personal intuition of his True Self.

This is also a movement from passivity to activity; from being-controlled to being free. 

So, the completeness of divinity is always when external divinity meets with inner divinity; but in a child or in early Man the external source of divinity was primary; and each man was unconsciously, passively driven-by the external. In such a situation, obedience to the authority of external divinity was the primary virtue; and the primary sin was to rebel against divinity.

As Man's consciousness grows (partly by development in his mortal life, partly at a species level and through human history) he becomes more aware of the distinction between himself and external deity. At a certain point (the culmination of spiritual adolescence), he experiences the reality of separation between external deity and the True Self.

At this point, experience of the polarity of deity is lost; because the experience is a static 'moment' of awareness, insight, 'enlightenment' - an epiphany - the truth of which is true in an abstract cross-sectional way (at a particular moment, 'outisde' of time); but the experience of separation from divinity is untrue in terms of life really being longitudinal, experienced through time.

The reality is that the dynamic process of polarity is always the case - and each man is always a meeting between external and internal divinity; but a snap-shot experience of a dynamic process is a 'frozen moment', in which the dynamic and reciprocal relationship is lost.

Man's divine destiny is to move from the child-like, un-free pole of external and passive immersion-in deity, to the free-agent, grown-up pole of working primarily from our own inner divine True Self. But because these are poles, both sides are always actually present.

So, the divine world begins as dominated by God, with Men as little-conscious (and other even less conscious beings), unconsciously and spontaneously (almost wholly, albeit never quite fully so - because this is a polarity) doing what God directs; and through time moving towards a situation in which some Men are much more powerfully conscious, and have chosen to live in mostly from their own inner divinity.

Instead of being unconsciously and passively directed-by God; such men have consciously and actively chosen to work from their independent agency and with God.

And this is the evolutionary movement from inspiration (primarily, not entirely, external divine guidance) to intuition (primarily, not entirely, inner divine guidance).

When we consciously choose to live primarily from the polarity of our True (and divine) self and with God, this is to become our-selves divine (albeit in a much less-continuous and less-able way than the creator). We become active participants in the process of creation.

And at a personal level, we become something more like God's grown-up 'adult' children; and friends (or 'junior colleagues') of God in his work of creation.

This is the plan of creation. God loves all his children - both the young one, the grown-up ones, and the (many) adolescents somewhere in between. But God certainly wants and hopes to have other 'adult' divinities with whom to relate in a loving and comnpanionable fashion; because grown-up divinities are working mainly from their unique selves.

When at least some of God's children choose to grow-up and join with God in the work of loving creation; divine creation becomes an harmonious interaction of increasing complexity and richness, as compared with the original and lesser situation of unitary, top-down control.

In sum, God wants us to participate, actively and consciously, in the process of creation.

And to do this we need to become more conscious, and by this consciousness to choose to live primarily from our inner divinity.

Yet, because of polarity, because inspiration and intuition are poles of the same single process; this inner motivation is necessarily harmonised with all other external sources of divinity.

Thus the universe of creation coheres.



Francis Berger said...

This is an excellent encapsulation/description of what the next step in Christianity must entail, Bruce. Your explanation/description of the inward/outward aspects of this dynamic process is both clear and succinct.

It is crucial for people to begin to begin perceiving and engaging with what you have described in this post (other thinkers revealed similar insights in the twentieth century, but these were largely ignored). People must understand this is the only meaningful way forward for Christians - everything else is misguided or regressive.

Bruce Charlton said...

Thanks Francis. For myself, I feel that I have been pretty much compelled to this understanding. Events in society at large seem to leave little alternative between something along the lines of the above; or enbracing ever-more-obvious evil (ever bigger lies, more aggressive ugliness, more insanely inverted morality). In that sense it really seems a 'no brainer' - although apparently very few see things that way. My main task is to take such things in (what I think of as ) an Arkle-esque spirit, rather than falling into bitterness, anger, despair or the like.

Jared said...

Bruce- This post makes a good discussion of the process we go through to become more like God. One of the critical steps in this process is to correctly assess where we are in the process (for most of us, adolescents who need to shoulder more of our responsibilities) and then to accept both the help of the Spirit and the opportunity to make our own choices to follow God. We should realize that God loves others as much as he loves us. Realizing our own failings and tendency for evil, without focusing on that evil will help us keep humble in the process.