I have recently blogged about the theme of Sorathic evil; which I adapted from some remarks of Rudolf Steiner - and which I first came across, summarized, in the work of Terry Boardman.
Sorathic evil is here defined as a purely negative, short-termist and destructive kind of evil; ultimately motivated by resentment and hatred of God and all that is God's creation.
I envisage Sorathic evil as a kind of end-stage (end-times) phenomenon; and one we may observe following-on from the recent and current Ahrimanic evil that denies the reality of God, creation and the spiritual realm altogether; and attempts to impose a wholly materialistic and scientistic, Global Total System of surveillance and control.
This Ahrimanic evil takes a long-term perspective, aiming to maximize quantitative human damnation - and in pursuit of this goal includes necessarily various elements that are good; such as the bureaucratic virtues of obedience, thoroughness and hard-work.
Ahrimanic evil aims to create a system of value-inversions (virtue becomes vice, while sin is encouraged and rewarded; truth becomes hate-facts and fake-news, while lies are science... etc.). This System will (by such means as law, media propaganda and corporate regulations) subversively 'process' people into a social structure that is anti-God, anti-Christian, anti-Good.
But as Ahrimanic evil has become dominant and pervasive, and gets closer to completion (as is happening rapidly at present) so the stage is set for Sorathic evil.
It will begin to be 'noticed' that The System still relies upon good-motivations (e.g. residual habits of thinking and behaving inherited from tradition and Christianity; or innate common sense evaluations and survival instincts as a consequence of human biology).
When these tacit and implicit Christian (or Pagan) virtues are pointed-out; and the Ahrimanic will begin to lose faith in their compromises.
As The System becomes more 'total', and as Good agents are disempowered and suppressed) inevitably Sorathic zeal begins to focus on those aspects of the The System itself, that conflict with the aims of evil.
Extremist and impatient Sorathic agents will turn-upon the plodding 'moderates' of evil; aiming to purge them. Indeed, by this point the sincere Ahrimanic agents will be among the least-evil of those who wield power and influence.
Until that point, short-termist immediate evil cannot prevail; because it cannot self-organize. After all, Sorathic agents will fight each other whenever immediate advantage is to be gained from it.
However, when Good has been substantially destroyed and replaced with an evil-orientated and evil-permeated System; then there will commence a kind of natural selection among agents of evil.
Sorathic agents that are more short-termist (hence destructive) will begin to prevail over Ahrimanic agents who are trying to be long-termist by clinging-onto virtues like obedience and pragmatic long-termism.
And Sorathic 'gratification' is, at this extreme, sheerly spiteful destructiveness. A Sorathically-motivated being will destroy even when this takes hard work, and even when it harms the Sorathic being.
(For a Sorathic being; cutting off your nose to spite your face is normal operational procedure.)
Against such reckless, frenzied, destructive hate; the sensible, practical, self-seeking Ahrimanic 'moderates' will be helpless.
For this reason I do not think that there can be a specific being of Sorath.
Instead Sorathic evil is a kind of mass effect, the product of many spiteful individuals operating in a situation of advanced-evil where good agents have been dispersed and stripped of power. Individualistic spite will prevail.
There cannot be a Sorathic 'leader'. Any attempt to plan and lead Sorathic activity, would be self-contradictory! After all; planning and strategizing of evil is Ahrimanic rather than Sorathic!
Maximizing immediate short-term destruction is intrinsically opposed to optimizing long-term Systemic evil They are goals that cannot simultaneously be pursued - one or the other must prevail.
In conclusion, I do not think that Sorath is a specific being, but a type of evil: the most advanced and extreme type of evil - therefore, one that cannot thrive until the ground has been prepared for it, by the success of Ahrimanic evil and its expulsion of Good agents from public discourse and practice.
And the ground has, very nearly, been exactly thus prepared; and the ascendency of the Sorathic has already begun.
IOW Sorathic Evil is the democratization of hell.
There was a story out of the US last year, where sensitivity training sessions at a nuclear weapons development laboratory focused on, apart from the usual emotional pain techniques, the implicit white supremacy of working hard and showing up on time. Apparently, no one involved thought it was untoward to conduct psychological torture sessions on the workforce of a critical strategic industry. There are no adults in the room.
"Instead Sorathic evil is a kind of mass effect, the product of many spiteful individuals operating in a situation of advanced-evil where good agents have been dispersed and stripped of power."
In the video game Mass Effect a group of AI beings that are designed to destroy all advanced life in the galaxy work to brainwash sentient races into cooperating with them. These "indoctrinated" (Ahrimanicized?) people aid the AI beings in their own destruction.
From the game's wiki: "She describes indoctrination as a subtle whisper you can't ignore, that compels you to do things without knowing why. Over days, perhaps a week of exposure to Sovereign's signal, the subject stops thinking for themselves and just obeys, eventually becoming a mindless servant."
"The more control Sovereign has over a person, the less capable they become."
"The mental damage from indoctrination is severe and permanent. As Shepard saw, the captured salarians on Virmire had been turned into shambling husks, who either attacked on sight or just stood awaiting orders."
In the games, this is all in preparation for a mass killing-off of space-faring civilizations.
The Mass Effect series is excellent, and was the primary catalyst for my abandonment of atheism. The core villains of the series are just as Ben describes: totally and universally corrupting, everyone who deals with them eventually loses everything. The presentation of these villains as completely untrustworthy and irredeemable never varies throughout the long (120+ hours) series.
At the climax of the series, the player, having mobilized the surviving remnants of the galactic civilizations to resist the villains, gets the opportunity to confront the villains' guiding intelligence. The player is given the opportunity to either destroy the villains, adopt the villains' methodology, or join with the villains to achieve a "higher unity of purpose." I, like many other players, chose the "unification" option. It is not immediately obvious within the context of the game which outcome is "correct", however there is one hint in that the "destroy the villains" option is the only way the hero can survive as a human.
The ending created a great deal of controversy at the time: most players disliked the scene where they met the villains' guiding intelligence, and there was considerable pressure by the fanbase for the ending of the game to be changed! After thinking about the ending for quite a while, however, I realized three things:
1. The developers were geniuses.
2. I had made the *wrong* choice at the end of the game, this was a personal moral failing.
3. None of my Christian friends would have made the wrong choice.
Armed with these realizations, I did two things: first, I replayed the entire game from the beginning and made the right choice, as a form of penance and repentance. Second, I ran a little experiment by encouraging one of my other atheist friends to play the game. I watched him make the *same decisions* I did, a long series of "noble" decisions followed by the same decisive mistake at the very end! Afterwards I was able to ask him a *single question* that made it obvious to him that he had made a terrible mistake.
That's when I *knew* that atheism wasn't going to work: when confronted by a real test, we would *fold* in critical ways that real Christians never would.
We are experiencing the consequences of this now.
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