Annatar, please excuse the late response. I've included a response to one of your posts from earlier back that I had written a response to but accidentally deleted.
annatar1914 wrote:Yes, past couple weeks have been good, and quite hopeful in a spiritual sense; a ''ferment''. I have been through a couple days of relative torpor and sluggishness but I think it came from worldly distractions I'm afraid. But, awareness of the problem is a good ways towards resolving it.
I'm glad to hear it has improved. I hope you are still feeling better now.
annatar1914 wrote:I think so too. God has given us gifted physicians and scientists, that come out in times of medical crisis. Plus, this plague has political roots that will not last, for God is not mocked. Of that, I'll discuss further below.
Thank God we have modern science.
annatar1914 wrote:''How do we know what we know?'', indeed. It does seem built on positivism and empiricism, that itself proceeded from a Medieval scholasticism that did not satisfy more dis-satisfied minds in the West. I think it is the product of intellectual preening and collective groupthink.
It is very much group think. Most thinking people do not come up with such ideas, a lot of them are merely adopted to conform to the orthodoxy of the consensus within academic circles. Normal people don't come up with these post-modern ideas but then the intelligentsia don't seem to give them much thought either. They are often contrived and based on rather tenuous thinking, a lot of it assumption and gross generalisation.
annatar1914 wrote:Sure, and I think, perhaps counter-intuitively, that he best free time is that that is less forced and structured, to where it becomes a form of work in itself for so many people.
Free time that allows a person to truly contemplate and actually think.
annatar1914 wrote:And when people abandon their ''duty'' of being mere consumers of goods and services, the whole thing will grind to a halt from that movement away, if it doesn't come from some other reason.
Which makes me wonder if some level of consumerism is needed if only to keep the gears of the economy moving.
annatar1914 wrote:No offense to people on PoFo necessarily, but I see it a lot here as elsewhere too. It's like two alien species trying to communicate; ''Copernican'' and ''Pre-Copernican'', but of that I'll speak later.
I am certainly guilty of this as well.
annatar1914 wrote:There are, and I'm probably at fault for speaking in these generalities, although I do it for ease of introducing and recalling concepts to my own mind as much as anyone else's.
Don't worry, I knew you were not making generalisations.
annatar1914 wrote:I feel that way myself, although it may be the case where we do not give ourselves enough credit. I think second hand opinions are fine if they happen to be the right ones. And I do not mean that in a facetious way either really, because otherwise we'd be forced to constantly apply a corrosive skepticism to all things.
Every thinker is inspired by ideas other than their own.
annatar1914 wrote:I agree. He, and by extension they, are painted in such dualistic terms rhetorically that it reveals the vile arrogance of those who hate them, whatever their real flaws it does not rise to demonizing them.
Unfortunately Trump's supporters were merely written off instead of properly engaged with. They were too large a section of the American public to simply ignore, which made the entire affair very dangerous for America's stability.
annatar1914 wrote:You've hit the mark here I think, and to deny these facts you plainly state is both arrogant and exceedingly foolish. Liberalism is the lasting and final fruit of the ''Enlightenment'' and the modern era we live in, it's assumptions are almost universal, but something is lost in the humanity of it's partisans I believe. And this contributes to the personal and social pathologies of this era in particular above others.
Thank you. There are massive weaknesses appearing in the centrist liberal system of the mainstream political parties. Unless they address them we will have severe problems down the line. Biden's administration will be unlikely to solve them as they are much bigger than any one administration can deal with.
annatar1914 wrote:Yes, and while he's a more interesting thinker than many people realize, these discussions eventually lead into some rather dangerous territory-which I think is the reason why they are promoted.
They also do not seem to provide much of a solution except to explore new age mysticism combined with political quietism. Although political quietism is perhaps one option. At least it would allow us to disengage from a process through which we lose our morality and hurt our conscience.
annatar1914 wrote:Yes, and I'm glad you mention the Jinn, because I see a definite connection between them and the ''Nephilim'' or the ''Giants'' of the Bible. It seems that Monotheists will be better prepared psychologically should the issue ever arise.
It will be possible to integrate such phenomena into our world view and framework of understanding.
Monotheists will be better able to cope than agnostics and atheists because the latter two will not be able to deal with something so other worldly and won't have any supporting paradigms to do so.
annatar1914 wrote:Which is why it is so interesting what ''they'' will have to say, should ''they'' ever appear.
Interesting as much as terrifying.
annatar1914 wrote:Difficult in one sense I agree, but as the situation unravels as I believe it will, reaction to these events will also provide opportunities.
Very many new opportunities. But probably extremely narrow ones as well.
annatar1914 wrote:Will be exploited, and are exploited.
annatar1914 wrote:As successful as the Russian effort has been, I hate to say it but I think distractions elsewhere will lead to the situation in Syria and elsewhere eventually being right back where we were with it before the Russian intervention.
Especially if the Russians leave. It would only take a new wave of that ideology in ten fifteen years time to re-activate those groups.
Even with the Russians there there is no guarantee of victory, I hate to say it. We only have to remember Afghanistan in the 1980s.
annatar1914 wrote:Exactly so, you have stated the problem very clearly and to the point.
Thank you. If ISIS ever did get to a position where they could properly threaten the West it would be a massive existential conflict. Material motivations alone could not motivate the people to resist them adequately.
annatar1914 wrote:If not sooner, because I honestly do not think some of these Middle Eastern nations in existence now will be so for very much longer.
A lot of these countries do not have long established traditions of nationhood. Ideas about uniting the region have always been very popular, if not Pan-Arabism then Pan-Islamism. However, it is unlikely the Arabs would accept Turkish or Iranian rule.
annatar1914 wrote:It may even help with spiritual clarification, a kind of quietism and withdrawal from the world. Perhaps not so much a ''withdrawal''even, so much as a conscious waiting for the right moments to arrive and to prepare for them. The basic bedrock foundation to hold on to when all else is questionable at times comes from Scripture, to believe that ''God exists and is a Rewarder to those who believe in Him''.
One knows God exists, and if we seek Him, we shall find Him, even if we might be wrong about Him in some way during our journey to find Him;
Thank you for what you have written here. We must continue to be sincere and always work to correct our internal state. We must work to be good in thought, action and word.
Thank you for sharing the recordings.
annatar1914 wrote:For the most part this is so, yet Civilization itself is grinding down, almost as if there is a kind of homeostatic mechanism that works to restore balance when there is none.
Would you say this is true of civilisation globally or only in the West?
annatar1914 wrote:I'm not sure that they were so when they were a Latin city-state during the times of the Kings of Rome and the Early Republic before the Punic Wars, but as they came more and more into contact with the Hellenic East, the more they became Civilized.
Which would suggest in some sense that Roman civilisation was not equivalent to Hellenic civilisation, even though there tends to be an association between them in Western classical thinking.
annatar1914 wrote:I also want to thank you, for you have helped me. I have rejected the Modernism entirely, thanks to you and others too, such as Verv and Potemkin, but you primarily. Even politically, I will no longer speak of things in the Modernist categories.
I am glad to have been of service, my friend. I hope my modest contributions were useful. I certainly must also thank you for your insight and the many ideas you've put forward here, they've helped me to develop my own understanding of the world. Potemkin, Verv, Wellsy and you are all very well read and I've found all of what you've all written every interesting. I think you've all contributed far more than me. It was wonderful to be able to have a polite and calm discussion.
annatar1914 wrote:I want to talk about ''corruption'' and ''corrupt officials'' and ''populism'' too.
As I stated earlier, ''corruption'' so called is an informal and personal response on the part of an official (s) in government, to help out either themselves or others by means of favors or procedural changes legal or not, or harm others for that matter. It is strictly speaking not legal or necessarily right to engage in this ''corruption'', but reflects the inability of formal government to address concerns.
''Populism'' is a movement of the people or a significant portion of them to take over (or back) their country from entrenched elites perceived to not be acting in their interests, but rather their own instead, writing the laws to favor themselves. This is not necessarily true, by the way. It could be that in significant ways, it is the people have also strayed and drifted into unruly and wicked rebellion against morality. Populism in itself is no more to be welcomed than Elitism is.
When there is a real dichotomy between what is lawful and permissible and what is right and good, a state of widespread corruption, society is in disharmony and breaks down into simpler and more governable units until a balance is reached or full order is restored.
It's all merely symptomatic of the fact that the system is no longer doing its job and slowly collapsing. We are living through the stagnation period of the West, a lot like the stagnation period of the Soviet Union under Brezhnev. We're only at the beginning of this road but it will have an end and that will not be wonderful. That is of course unless the political centre manage to implement the necessary reforms and retrieve the situation, but that is unlikely to happen because it would be too uncomfortable for them and is in many ways not structurally possible.
annatar1914 wrote:It has been said that Homer's Illiad and the Odyssey are the foundational writings of Western Civilization, and so they are, as the Greeks are the foundation of Western Civilization
But I put against them Virgil's Aeneid, as I place against the Greeks the Romans, who later in conquering Greece were slowly conquered by them, the Aeneid being the last cultural flowering of the Roman spirit that was so barbarous in the minds of Greeks like Polybius. I wrote;
And by ''Freedom'' I mean true freedom, not the false freedom of Prometheus or Lucifer, of the will and of pride, but the freedom of those who are united with the spiritual eternal truths and are the vehicles of the Will of Heaven. Virgil's Aeneas is pious, reverent to the gods and dutiful to his people and family above all, honorable and amiable to friends and courageous against foes.
In contrast, Homer's Odysseus is fiendishly clever, and Achilles is fiendishly willful . But they are more congenial to natural man and thus get better press than others.
It is interesting to me that when Aeneas arrives in Italy and seeks the hand of Lavinia which causes a war between the fugitive Trojans and Latins against Turnus and his Italian allies, Turnus his foe is basically another ''Achilles'' that Aeneas triumphs against.
Knowledge of the Greek world and Classics is a huge gap in my education. I must read more before I can comment on this with any authority but your analysis will be very interesting after I have read on these subjects.
annatar1914 wrote:Our ideals are our destiny. One's heroes are exemplars and role models to emulate.
Do you think our heroes influence us subconsciously? What leads us to choose certain heroes over others?
annatar1914 wrote:Emphasis in bold is mine. I thought of William Gibson and the Cyberpunk genre, Philip K. Dick and all the others who saw this, the libertarian and Objectivist philosophers and really the universal trend of Western civilization for hundreds of years.
Anarcho-Capitalism as it truly is, Neo-Feudalism... Because this is where this will end up, and Western national governments on down to the local level will only govern in a formal and nominal sense, with no real power to speak of. It will be the corporations that will seize power in order to manage the decline of civilization itself. Techno-Fascism, and the privatization of government functions including the disbursement of universal basic income (for isn't that what the COVID stimulus checks are, a test run for UBI payments?).
It will be a real irony if Socialism were to help preserve genuine liberty and what it traditionally means to be a family and a human being, preserve normal human society and traditional government and nation-states, would it not?
After all, look at recent events....We are in an Age now between Scylla and Charybdis, between the private soulless Western Corporations and the bands of ISIS and similar forces.
It's an extremely worrying development. More and more power to corporations and the loss of central control. People talk of an Orwellian future and there is no reason to underrate their concerns but it is possible that as you say it will be a type of corporate power. It could get to the point that central government persists but that it exists to protect these fiefdoms. Corporate rule would be abysmal, the worst type of totalitarianism.
Was it not Mussolini who said that Fascism was the merger of state and corporate power? Yes, then in this case it would be its own type of fascism, although of a more localised form and not through loyalty to a particular country.
Liberal democracy exists on the premise of freedom of the individual and autonomy, but under these conditions there would be no more freedom of the individual. In that case socialism would most certainly be a better alternative. Corporate rule would be slavery.
annatar1914 wrote:With a New Year comes the end of older things and the beginning of the new, and a display of that which is eternally true along with what is transient.
In keeping with the spirit of these sentiments, I'll be creating a new thread to express my ideas, ideas more in keeping with a thread in the ''spirituality'' sub-forum than this one perhaps. It starts with;
''Breaking the Cycle; the Eschaton as Liberation''
Thank you all for your contributions.
It's been a great discussion here and I've learnt a tremendous amount. Thank you, Annatar.
I'll look forward to your new thread.
annatar1914 wrote:Back to this thread, my friends. I have my reasons, and this larger and encompassing theme is the most important of all.
Primarily because of an insight I gained long ago; ''For he who is not against us is on our side'', whether they realize it or not.
When you consider the great gulf which exists in human thinking now, it comes down almost to pre-1492 and largely Monotheistic, and post-1492 and increasingly Non-Monotheistic. In time, Polytheism will return to a large degree, because already gross superstition is rife in Modern society, stupidity and the literal inability to think logically...
There is an observable growing interest in non-monotheistic belief systems.
annatar1914 wrote:There is a certain subset of people that I admit to finding 'admirable' in a certain way, even though they are evil people. Joseph de Maistre, reactionary and devout Christian though he was, believed that as well as he always wished against his King's orders to someday meet and have a long discussion with Napoleon. Never happened, the Lord knows best. Blaise Pascal said of some rare evil people that;
''Evil is easy, and has infinite forms; good is almost unique. But a certain kind of evil is as difficult to find as what we call good; and often on this account such particular evil gets passed off as good. An extraordinary greatness of soul is needed in order to attain to it as well as to good.''
And when these people operate, even experienced worldlings like myself are surprised by the ''long cons'' they manage to pull off, for a while. They're not ordinary scumbags, and the tragedy is that they could be Saints if they applied that same ruthless energy and determination and ascetic industriousness they possess to their spiritual salvation. But they get turned off I guess by the seemingly smallness and everyday pedestrian banality, the simplicity, of the journey towards God, and of their fellow pilgrims along the way.
Nonetheless, God still uses them for His purposes and not necessarily their own.
Funnily enough this subject is one I've been thinking of a lot in recent weeks. There are people who use philosophy and religion for their own purposes, they infiltrate them, especially religion. A lot of pseudo intellectuals, including published ones, do this. Very famous people who I will perhaps not name here but perhaps I should. The misuse of religion is tremendous. It's the reason why I don't like to politicise religion or use it to push forward a certain ideological position.