Saturday 23 September 2023

If God, nowadays, requires us to be active-seekers - this means that the blockages are in-Me

Modern adult Men are not spontaneously religious or (seriously) spiritual - and we are trapped in the alienated state of purposelessness and meaninglessness by our fundamental assumptions concerning the nature of reality. 

Any Westerner who is a real Christian, has had to achieve this by his own efforts. 

Whereas, in the past, it seems that God imposed his reality upon most people; and it took effort to reject God; nowadays we must make the effort. 

The same applies to much that is true: it does not come naturally. 

Truth does not overwhelm us, but needs to be sought and won. 

We must not only meet God 'halfway' - but must, indeed, do most of the work! If (for instance) a modern man wants to perceive God in this world, to know God is real, or to know this world as a creation - he will need to work at it: and this work will quite likely be hard and long: he will need to be persistent.

This is the flip-side of our freedom. 

Because we are not spontaneous/ passively-absorptive; we are free to accept or reject, embrace or ignore. 

This applies to knowing God as to our politics and ideology - we Just Are responsible for our beliefs; and responsible in ways that did not apply in the deep past, or even the relatively recent past of a couple of generations ago.

(We may yearn to provide the kind of "good-values environment" for our children that will enable them, passively and spontaneously, to assimilate Christianity as natural - but usually even this is denied us. And even when it is achieved during childhood, and the child grows surrounded by good-influences; the effects seldom survive adolescence, or early adulthood. In 2023 and The West; sooner or later, every real Christian must do it for himself - or else not really be Christian, like the 100s of millions of devout Churchgoers who actively and fundamentally support the agenda of totalitarian evil.)  

The point we need to grasp is that God has not retreated, creation is still as present as ever (even in a modern city) - the blockages are in us

We are the problem. What prevents us knowing God is inside ourselves. 

And this is why it is so difficult! When the blockages are in our own basic assumptions about reality (i.e. our 'metaphysics'), our own habits of thinking, our unconsciously absorbed wrong-values etc; then only we can remove these blockages! 

When we are unable to perceive most of reality, are unable to comprehend the obvious, are dedicated to inversions of the truth and goodness - and when all chance of cure is blocked; then nobody can do the job of correcting these problems except ourselves. 

That is what it means to be free

It is seldom easy to removes one's own blockages; it usually takes time, effort, and repeated attempts. These blockages, including the most devastating, are hard to discover; because so common, so accepted, such 'common sense', so (apparently) supported by 'science'. 

(Only if you really dig-down to your own deepest assumptions; or maybe notice and take seriously that these blocking ideas are actually modern and local,rather than eternal and universal; are you likely to discover them, and recognize that they are Not necessary-truths.)  

And the process is not only unsupported by other people who are satisfied with a blocked-life; others will often discourage such efforts, and punish the consequences. 

In 2023; to live without a common-blockage is to live in ways that seem stupid, crazy or evil to the majority who choose to remain blocked, and who have decided not to make the significant effort to remove blockages. 

On the other hand - nobody and nothing can stop you removing the blockages, and perceiving real-reality - if you thus choose. 

That also is the nature of freedom. 



Francis Berger said...

This is very good.

Getting to the point where one understands the problems are not in the external but the internal is no easy task, precisely because it requires freedom, and the sheer thought of such freedom terrifies -- so much so that the unfreedom of blockage is preferable.

The Grand Inquisitor reproved Jesus for expecting too much of man. Sadly, for the most part, man appears to agree with the Grand Inquisitor.

Side note - I really must re-read Philosophy of Freedom soon.

Bruce Charlton said...

@Frank - This way of thinking also clarifies the methods of the devil. In a situation where salvation can be had by all those who want it; it is vital that Men be induced Not to want it.

That has (it seems) been largely achieved, but not by a direct denial - instead by inculcating assumptions by which the whole thing seems absurd; and by leading Men to expect that - if God/ Creation/ Jesus were Really-real, then that knowledge would of course be forced-upon us, no matter how much we resisted.

Meanwhile; all the time We are the problem, We are what makes God invisible/ nonsense; and so long as we are the problem (and are unaware or refuse to admit the fact), there can be no external solution.