My untrained - and probably tone deaf - ear cannot discern whether or not Cutting is "better" than John Dowland, but it doesn't really matter because I find Cutting's lute pieces delightful all the same.
The only upside of possessing fairly shallow knowledge of classical music is the delight I experience whenever I "discover" a composer I have never encountered before. Case in point, Francis Cutting and his charming lute music.
My untrained - and probably tone deaf - ear cannot discern whether or not Cutting is "better" than John Dowland, but it doesn't really matter because I find Cutting's lute pieces delightful all the same.
If I were forced to affix an overarching personal theme to the events of the past year, I would choose the theme of "the constricting world versus the expanding world."
For me, the constricting world is the "given world" of practically every "macro" aspect of the System - politics, economics, society, culture, business, etc., as well as a great deal of "micro", temporal, System-related things such as shrinking personal liberty, restricted freedom of movement, a constant barrage of curtailment measures, etc.
Simply put, I have witnessed and experienced an undeniable contraction of the temporal world over the past year. Limiting, restricting, narrowing forces now rule this world. I feel the choking, strangling, squeezing pressure every time I spend any time in public. Everywhere I look, I see the external condensing, compacting, and compressing. What was once relatively fluid and free has since become coagulated and devitalized. The external, material world has been successfully objectified.
The expanding world consists of the created world - the awareness of the world within the world that contains the world entire; the living, breathing microcosm that holds the living, created macrocosm juxtaposed against the stultifying macrocosm of the "given" world. Expanding, growing, liberating forces move the created world. I feel the enlarging, developing, enticing force every time I succeed in seeing the world through the eyes of God. What was devitalized and frozen is suddenly energized and emancipated. The created world remains free and accessible to all who want it, but it requires subjects, not objects.
The constricting world is the tug of non-Being; the expanding world is the call of the Divine.
It really is that simple.
Bruce Charlton has written some excellent posts in which he explores the nature and characteristics of three modes of evil, Luceferic, Ahraminic, and Sorathic, which I will summarize very briefly in the following manner:
Luciferic: passionate, selfish, reactive, emotional, lustful, tormented, short-term.
Ahrimanic: cold, controlling, systematic/bureaucratic, power-hungry, mid-to-long term.
Sorathic: purely negative, destructive, "cut off your nose to spite your face" evil
As Dr. Charlton has outlined in great detail on his Notions blog, the Global Establishment currently in control of the world are predominately characterized by Ahrmanic evil - the kind of evil that wishes to monitor, manage, and control all aspects of life. Ahrimanic evil aims to restrict, impose, govern, administer, and dominate every single facet of human society and the natural world.
Extremely alienated and opposed to God and Creation, Ahrimanic evil is a crushing, objectifying force that reduces the world to the realm of things and resources to be managed via legislation, tax codes, laws, restrictions, measures, plans, and agendas. This kind of evil can only make sense of the world through data, spreadsheets, research, inputs, outputs, outcomes, The Science, etc. At the same time, the inherent gross dishonesty and manipulation fueling Ahrimanic evil ensures the data it selects to propel its aims through its systems of control are rarely, if ever, aligned with basic common sense or a bare minimum adherence to some semblance of temporal reality.
Though it had been influential, perhaps even dominant for decades, the forces driving Ahrimanic evil through a cabal of public-private partnership technocrat and corporate/
government tyrants finally managed to seize control of the world during the largely unnoticed and unreported global totalitarian coup of 2020.
Evidence of this new level of control surfaced almost immediately through the sudden implementation of restrictive birdemic lockdown and social distancing measures and the concurrent and often inexplicable pushing of grandiose schemes like the Great Reset, UN 2030, the Green Agenda, all of which proposed to "fix" the many systemic problems the birdemic had unexpectedly exposed.
Marketed as completely necessary for the good of society and the planet, the Establishment's Ahrimanic totalitarian agendas are largely being fueled by the tenet of ESG Investing* - the shifting and reallocation of resources, capital flows, and societal infrastructure to achieve desired "good outcomes" in the areas of environment, social values, and governance.
The formula is a simple one - take the current System and completely restructure and reorganize it to entrench the wealth, status, and power of the totalitarian class while simultaneously rendering the remaining bulk of humanity to perpetual serfdom via surveillance, control, restrictions, laws, imposed poverty, etc.
At their very core, the totalitarian agendas amount to little more than a massive "control and scam" program, but the extended, long-term execution of the kind "control and scam" agenda Ahrimanic evil aims to install requires the construction and maintenance of extensive, efficient, and highly complex networks all integrated within a centrally controlled system. Many believe such a system already exists within the shifting infrastructure of the current System. At the same time, evidence to the contrary is also abundantly bobbing to the surface.
On the one hand, the long-term control and scam system the totalitarian technocrats envisage requires a high-level of human competence, prolonged "positive" motivation, abundant resources, cutting edge technological expertise, immense global co-operation, and so forth. On the other hand, the ESG aims behind Ahrimanic evil encourage hiring people according to race and gender rather than competence, alienate a fair number of competent people, undermine cutting edge technological research through "woke" ideologies, create disharmony and resentment among different groups of people, etc.
Oddly enough, none of this seems to faze the managers and technocrats among the Ahrimanic elite who very much appear to have fallen into the habit of "getting high off their own supply." Having utilized the 2020 coup to increase their power and wealth while simultaneously enslaving and impoverishing the majority of humanity, our new global totalitarian rulers are convinced that - with a few adjustments and overhauls here and there - they can maintain the crushing, tyrannical conditions they have imposed upon the world in perpetuity.
The Ahrimanic elite are so convinced of the imminent success of their control and scam agenda of "re-struction" that they have become blind to the potential forces of destruction. They wholeheartedly believe they can manage the demolition of the old System while simultaneously "building back better" via an upgraded, tyrannical system.
I don't know about you, but from what I have seen and experienced over the past year, I can quite confidently declare that Ahrimanic evil's plan to install a green, reset world based on "building back better" is destined to fail and is destined to fail hard. Not only that, it is likely to fail very quickly, as in months or a couple of years rather than decades as Dr. Charlton notes in the following taken from the linked post above:
We are incrementally making a world where nobody can do anything - including that nobody can implement a Great Reset.
How much can The System take before its self-correcting, negative-feedback mechanisms are themselves overwhelmed by this cancer of chaos?
Ahrimanic evil is motivated by the desire to bring negative order out of chaos, but the quality of Ahrimanic evil currently on display virtually ensures the failure of this aim. Instead of negative order, all it will succeed in bringing forth from the chaos is more chaos, and the essence of this added, unexpected chaos is the very essence of Sorath.
Whether this Sorathic element appears accidentally or emerges intentionally from hidden layers of power within the Ahrimanic elite remains to be seen. Either way, I suspect the full emergence of Sorath will trigger a genuine "aw, snap" and "damn!" moment among the Ahrimanic elite, the vast majority of whom will not only react to the explosion of destruction with horrified shock, but will be likewise horrified and shocked to learn that they are unable to halt the destruction once it explodes.
* ESG (Environment, Social Values, and Corporate Governance) is the latest of the Establishment's control and scam schemes. Set up as a series of metrics to determine how well a company adheres to the System's global environmental goals (reduced emissions, net zero carbon, carbon footprint, etc.), social value aims (diversity, inclusion, equity, anti-racism, women's rights, human rights, etc.), and corporate governance issues (transparency, business ethics, corruption, etc.), ESG is supposed to help investors determine which companies are "good" and which are "bad" according to the measurements listed above.
Companies with high ESG scores will attract ample investment from private and public equity, while companies with low ESG scores will be shunned, punished and, eventually, phased out. Many international bodies, corporations, and governments around the world have signed up for and are on board with the ESG program. Though it sounds innocuous, perhaps even "good" to the average person on the street, ESG metrics present major difficulties for key industries including fossil fuels, meat production and processing, chemicals, and so forth, to say nothing of the massive scam potential involved in these sorts of regulations. Yesterday, I posted a video in which UN special envoy Mark Carney discusses the implications of ESG investing in connection with climate change. Carney straight out says that it is "unforgivable" or companies not to adhere to ESG guidelines going forward and they would cease to exist if they did not comply.
Note added: "Aw, snap" and "damn!" are informal, slang phrases used to communicate surprise and shock when things go terribly, unexpectedly wrong or something shocking or overwhelming occurs. I first encountered the expressions in the real world when I worked as a high school teacher in the Bronx. Though I rarely use them myself, I think they both "work" as phrases.
A little over a year ago, at the very beginning of the birdemic here in Hungary, I wrote a post in which I described a chance meeting with a professor colleague who bitterly argued that the drastic measures being implemented to "protect" society from the birdemic should have been executed much sooner to counter climate change:
"This (the birdemic) isn't a dangerous situation at all, yet they've shut down the world. It infuriates me to no end. If they can shut down the world for this stupidity, it means they could have shut down the world much sooner to fight the only real danger we're facing - climate change!
But they haven't. Not for climate change anyway," he continued sadly. "Their excuse? It would have hurt the economy. But they're more than willing to shut down the economy now! And for what? To save a few thousand people? Climate change is still there! That affects everyone. I hope they remember that once this virus disappears. What they're doing now is right, but it's for all the wrong reasons."
Well, my climate change-obsessed colleague can rest assured that "they" have not forgotten about climate change, and that "they" are certainly dealing with it, and that "they" are going to focus on doing all the right things for all the "right" reasons going forward.
Those who continue to cling to increasingly fading hopes of a return to normal after the birdemic appear utterly oblivious to one overarching fact - as far as our global totalitarian overlords are concerned, normal is unsustainable because of global warming . . . no wait, scratch that, climate change . . . no, I mean the climate emergency (which is the latest term The Science is using to refer to the Big Lie).
Here's the problem - normal is what currently sustains the 7+ billion human beings on the planet. If normal has become unsustainable, then what will sustain the earth's 7+ billion human population?
If you listen to the Establishment, the only thing that will save the earth is a complete System overhaul. Normal must be replaced a new sustainable global System of deep-green technologies, zero carbon production, protein alternatives, renewable energy, and all the rest of it.
Over the past decade or two, people have grown accustomed to regarding these terms and notions as mostly talk, which they mostly were, but the successful 2020 global totalitarian coup has granted our new technocratic overlords the opportunity to finally put their money where their mouths are.
In a short paper titled "50 Shades of Green", current climate crusader poster boy Mark Carney, who once headed the Bank of Canada and later the Bank of England, outlines a plan to construct a new financial system that will stop runaway climate change.
The choice of title for this proposal is very fitting because it barely veils the inherent sadistic pleasure Establishment figures like Carney experience when they divulge their plans to systematically dismantle the very foundations of the industrial complex upon which nearly all human life on this planet depends. Of course, Carney refers to this as a transition rather than a dismantling, but the motivation behind the terminology is clear.
Carney's vision is simple and straightforward - the global totalitarians are going to force every business on the planet to craft a green transition plan. The totalitarians will then evaluate those plans and decide which businesses receive investments and which won't. But the key to it all is the transition plan. Every business in the world will have to draw one up. If not . . . well, let's read Carney's own words about the matter (taken from the video below):
A year from now, the absence of a transition plan will likely be seen as either an intention to wind down a business over the coming decades or an assertion that the company is separate, or views itself as separate from society.
The former, winding down, may be logical. The latter, being apart from society, is unforgivable.
Replace the word "society" with the System and you get a clear picture of what kind of totalitarians our current rulers really are.
The Establishment is planning to put its money where its mouth is. Businesses that are completely onboard with climate emergency measures like net zero carbon will receive a lot of cash; business that are not, will cease to exist.
Looked at from a different angle, companies that comply with the agenda can participate in the totalitarianism of public-private partnership; those who don't, will be driven out of existence for moral rather than economic reasons.
Unfortunately, Carney's climate-related rhetoric cannot be laughed off in the same manner Greta Thunberg's climate-tirades often are. When Carney speaks, it is usually to inform the world of developing events rather than to simply whine about perceived problems.
The Tragedy of the Horizon is one of Carney's pet phrases, and he uses it to call attention to the climate emergency that so obsesses the Establishment. The phrase is apt - not because it paints an accurate picture of climate change dangers, but rather because it prophesies the looming human catastrophe the Establishment's totalitarian Ahrimanic schemes will trigger.
Fittingly enough, the Establishment's 50 Shades of Green will inevitably inflict a great deal of pain. The Tragedy of the Horizon will have nothing to do with climate change and everything to do with the Establishment's purported actions against the dreaded climate emergency.
Some degree of tragedy at the horizontal (worldly) level seems inevitable at this point. Our task will involve dealing with whatever horizontal tragedy eventually unfolds. Our success or failure individually will depend on our faith in and love for the vertical (spiritual), which is why I believe the spiritual imperative of system distancing is so important at this point.
The video below is from this past December; in it, Carney outlines the Establishment's envisioned transition from the unsustainable to the sustainable. Not exactly exciting viewing, but quite informative nonetheless.
In yesterday's post, I argued that neoreactionary movements under the banners of the Dark Enlightenment, the alt-right, the Manosphere, etc., have all essentially failed and have been rendered moot. Though various forms of neoreaction and neoreactionary thought continue to exist, very few, if any, possess the resources needed to effectively overcome the crushing, deterministic objectifying forces of the System.
My observations and criticisms do not emanate from some petty desire to disparage neoreactionaries, but rather from the understanding that the challenges we face today require and demand spiritual action rather than political action.
Those who subscribe to the various tenets of neoreaction reject the primacy of the spiritual - more specifically, Christianity - and insist that the solutions to all worldly problems can be found exclusively through worldly mechanisms like politics, governance, law, economics, and all the rest of it.
The main trouble with neoreaction and other so-called "right" movements is their utter disregard of the reality of God and Creation, the reality of man as a spiritual being, and the reality of the development of consciousness.
Neoreaction's lazy indifference to or, in some cases, vehement opposition to the above-mentioned not only ensures it can never provide what is needed to successfully and meaningfully counter and resist the enslaving, deterministic, and objectifying forces of the given world, but also ensures that any unlikely "victory" it ever does manage to secure would only serve to exacerbate the slavery, determinism, and objectification it claims to oppose.
Of course, neoreaction or any other so-called "rightist" movement will never score any victories against the System because the System itself is in firm control of the "left-right" horizontal axis to which all secular "right-wingers" restrict themselves.
Neoreactionaries and other alt-rightists do not comprehend that the System's supremacy over the horizontal political axis is dominated by negative spiritual objectives. The forces behind the global totalitarian coup of 2020 are utilizing their tyranny of the horizontal (worldly) to prevent and deny any and all positive movements along the vertical (spiritual). By disregarding the primacy of the spiritual, neoreaction does little more than fortify and support the Establishment's negative spiritual objectives.
The forces driving the Establishment and the System wasted no time launching an intensive campaign to "change the world" immediately after the successful 2020 global totalitarian coup. Though the campaign presents itself as inherently "good" and proactive, it is fundamentally evil and destructive. It aims to obliterate the reality of God, destroy all vestiges of authentic Christianity, lock humanity into the lower realms of obedience or slavery consciousness, and impose worldly conditions that will actively push every person to willful self-damnation or despair.
Though the campaign is ultimately motivated by negative spiritual ends, the achievement of these negative spiritual ends is completely restricted to worldly means. Put another way, it can use nothing but the "given world" to restrict your consciousness and get at your soul.
I use the term "given world" to refer to the faux, enslaved world the System controls. The given world is essentially a prison in which individuals believe themselves to be determined almost exclusively by external forces. The given world denies the reality of God and the reality of man's spiritual nature. It is a purely horizontal world. Individuals who abide by the "laws" of the given world forfeit the spiritual resources needed to resist the imposed determinism of the System's objectified world. Within this "given world", people exist as objects and interact exclusively with other things.
Since neoreaction and other alt-right movements do not believe in the primacy of the spiritual, they are completely restricted by and can only respond to this "given world." The best solution neoreaction or other secular rightists could ever hope to provide is the substitution of one "given" world for another.
If the campaign against us is fundamentally evil and destructive, then our response must be fundamentally good and creative.
If the campaign against us is motivated by negative spiritual ends, we must respond by pursuing positive spiritual ends.
If they can only get at us through the means of the "given world", we must spiritually distance ourselves from the "given world" and rediscover the created cosmos of Divine Reality and use it to expand our consciousnesses and save our souls.
Thus, the way forward lies not in neoreaction but in neocreation*; that is, not in "reacting" to the slavery of the "given world", but in "co-creating" in the freedom of Divine Reality - in the "created cosmos" of God and Creation.
* H/T to Wm Jas Tychonievich for this specific term, which he drew from my anagrammatic tinkering with the terms reaction/creation. Wm also cited 2 Cor. 5:17 as an example of neocreation: "So if any one [be] in Christ, [there is] a new creation; the old things have passed away; behold all things have become new."
Note: I personally find the juxtaposition of Jesus's unconcern for the "given world" of His time and his deep concern for Divine Reality to be one of the most striking features of the Gospels, particularly the Fourth Gospel.
When I compare historical reaction of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries with the contemporary neoreaction movement, I can't help but think of Marx's adage concerning history repeating itself, first as tragedy, then as farce.
Though I shudder to mull over anything Marx said, his tragedy/farce adage is readily applicable to the juxtaposition of historical reactionary movements to contemporary neoreactionary movements espoused by those among the so-called alt-right.
Historical reaction is tragic because it was a spiritualized or at least somewhat spiritualized force that ultimately failed against the dispiritualized or at least somewhat despiritualized forces of democracy and egalitarianism. Its aim to restore society to a previous political state neglected or misunderstood the shift in consciousness fueling the new ideas and social changes that had risen up to challenge the status quo.
The only spiritual response historical reaction could offer during its intermittent victories against the despiritualizing deluge of egalitarianism, democracy, and materialism was to force a return to the external temporal authority of Church and Crown. Unbeknownst to reactionaries at the time, the spiritual solution historical reaction offered was no longer viable because human consciousness had outgrown it.
Contemporary neoreaction was a farce because it learned nothing from the tragedy of historical reaction. Consequently, its anti-egalitarian, anti-democratic stance not only failed to address the underlying spiritual causes of egalitarianism and democracy, but denied the very existence of spiritual causes altogether. Unlike historical reaction, neoreaction attempted to challenge the forces of despiritualization from a fundamentally despiritualized position.
Historical reaction was both a political and spiritual force; neoreaction was neither. Historical reaction was a deposed spiritual and political system fighting an ascendant, unspiritual political system. Neoreaction was not a system in its own right, but merely an aspect of an all encompassing anti-spiritual System challenging itself.
In this sense, neoreaction never really occupied the "right wing" the way historical reaction had because it did not abide by the primacy of the spiritual; more specifically, Christianity. This means the alt-right and other neoreactionary movements were not truly "right" in the traditional sense, but was merely among the "least left".
Historical reaction was a curious blend of politics, religion, and science; the alt-right was purely political science. Moreover, from the perspective of political science, contemporary neoreaction was all theory and no practice. Since neoreaction refused to base its movement on religious principles, it never looked for an opportunity to transcend the System, but contented itself with dreaming about reorganizing the politics and "stuff" of the System.
The successful global totalitarian coup of 2020 has rendered moot whatever legitimacy neoreactionaries claimed to hold.
All politics is now officially left; all systems, even those that pretend to oppose the System, are now mostly or firmly within the System's grip.
As a result, "reacting" to the System has become pointless. Most reaction today amounts to little more than objecting to "leftist" stupidity and outrage in much the same way a person's lower leg "reacts" to the impact of a reflex hammer at a doctor's office.
Reaction, in whatever form, is now dead. Reaction is dead because it lost its connection to Creation - without this connection, reaction can provide no meaningful way forward.
Historical reaction's answer to despiritualization was a fundamentally good but otherwise outmoded form of Christianity. Human consciousness had moved into adolescence; the only spiritual solution historical reaction could conjure is the attempt to force this adolescent consciousness back toward the Church and Crown of spiritual childhood.
Neoreaction, on the other hand, attempted to challenge an anti-spiritual status quo from an essentially un-spiritual and often anti-spiritual position.
Historical reaction offered the wrong solution to the problem of despiritualization, while neoreaction offered no solution at all.
The only meaningful and viable way forward is authentic respiritualization, but this does not entail the building of a respiritualized system to take on the System (an impossible undertaking at this time); nor does it entail any attempt to respiritualize the existing System itself. The respiritualization we need now must occur outwith the System and must not "evolve" to become a system.
Our task is to take the impetus behind Reaction and invest it into Creation.
It starts with taking the "c" within Reaction from its current spot in the word and placing it before the "r", and continues from the knowledge that any meaningful way forward must pursue the primacy of Christianity in a positive rather than negative manner.
Hence, we must learn to become creation-ary rather than reactionary.
Foremost, this means aligning ourselves with and being in harmony with God and Creation.
Once we have done this, we must remember that the task ahead does not involve building a new system to challenge the existing System or attempting to reform the System from within. Instead, it involves creating new spiritual elements from within ourselves outside of and beyond the System.
Our task is to create a new spiritual element that will inch us closer to spiritual adulthood.
We need to "create" the kind of spiritual element historical reaction should have but could not supply; the kind of spiritual element neoreaction did not acknowledge, let alone attempt to comprehend.
Creation is neither tragedy nor farce; it marks a new spiritual beginning.
One way to approach system distancing is from the perspective of truth, which can be divided into lowercase truth and uppercase Truth.
Lowercase truth demands obedience to the objectified world and its "reality" of meaninglessness and purposelessness. It denies spirit and stresses necessity. It considers anything toward which the spirit aspires to be non-existent and everything that crushes the spirit to be omni-existent. Lowercase truth is a forceful master and it demands passive acceptance of its abstractions. It denies all light and claims darkness to be true.
Uppercase Truth is the voice from the Gospel: "I am Truth." It testifies to the meaning and purpose of the Reality of subjects. Truth liberates spirit from necessity. Truth frees. It is everything toward which the spirit aspires and the highest form of existence. Uppercase Truth is a friend requesting active creativity through love. Truth is the light of an integral spirit that exposes the lying darkness of lowercase truth.
Lowercase truth seeks passive slaves.
Uppercase Truth seeks active creators.
As Dostoevsky once noted, if truth is one side, and Christ on the other, it is better to reject truth and go with Christ; that is, it is better to refuse the dead truth of a passive intellect for the sake of the living Truth of the integral spirit.
Note added: The above was inspired by passages from Berdyaev's The Meaning of the Creative Act.
I recently suggested that our new totalitarian world could be neatly summed up by the motto "none are safe until all are safe", which various Establishment figures and System apparatchiks have been bandying around since the outbreak of the birdemic a little over one year ago.
I later surmised the motto had become more of an edict; one that perfectly and lucidly encapsulates the tyrannical ethos that inspires and motivates our new totalitarian overlords.
The perniciousness of "none are safe until all are safe" is rather striking. On the surface, the altruistic motto/edict appears rooted in concern for common good and the genuine desire to safeguard the health and welfare of all individuals; however,scratch away this thin, abstract "love of mankind" veneer, and the ruthless, tyrannical undercurrents hiding beneath it all is readily exposed.
The evil behind "none are safe until all are safe" lies in the observable fact that it grants the authorities that wield and implement the edict free reign to take whatever measures they deem necessary and essential to ensure the safety of every single global citizen on the planet.
In theory, the abstraction that "no one is safe until all are safe" could justify the continued implementation of any and all sorts of repressive mandatory measures even if and when only a handful of individuals or even just one individual within the global population remains "unsafe."
The birdemic peck - which is being rolled out on a mostly voluntary basis in many countries around the world - possesses the potential to develop into the next and most significant repressive mandatory measure that our new tyrannical overlords aim to implement.
Calls to make the peck obligatory worldwide have already risen up from various corners of the globe. Here in Hungary - where the government has been feverishly propagandizing to motivate every one of its citizens to voluntary get themselves pecked under the auspices of the global "none are safe until all are safe" edict - the most vociferous support for mandatory pecks has come from a vehement virologist who rabidly insists that pecking should be stringently pursued, by force if necessary:
The coronavirus pandemic can be stopped only if everyone is vaccinated against it, old and young alike, said virologist Ernő Duda, associate professor at the University of Szeged. He told daily Népszava on Saturday that in an extreme case the choice will be either you get your COVID-19 shot, go live like a hermit in the woods, or die.
He stressed that "there should be intensive propaganda stressing the pandemic is not over, wear those masks. And those that do not, should be fined. We don't need more stringent measures but the enforcement of existing ones."
In order to enforce this interest, a drastic means may be deployed in an extreme case, for example, making vaccination mandatory.
"Those (who resist) will sooner or later need to make a choice: become hermits in the woods, die out, or get vaccinated."
Seems like a pleasant chap. Well-balanced and sensible, too. Nonetheless, his tyrannical nobility and high-mindedness is clearly on display through his voicing of the "none are safe until all are safe edict."
Of course, this Duda fellow is not the government, and as of yet, the Hungarian government has not made any overt moves to make pecking mandatory, but I have a sinking feeling that legislation to implement such measures are already being drawn up by some poor clerk chained to a radiator in the basement of the Hungarian parliament building.
It's worth noting that the government itself has not shied away from using tyrannical measures since the outbreak of the birdemic and continues to apply a slew of them today, so I'm sure it would not shy away from mandatory vaccination if push ever came to shove.
It's also worth noting that Orbán and his government pride themselves on being Christian nationalists, so hey . . .
I use the example of Hungary because it is the one closest to me, but I suspect the same conditions and forces are at play around the world, albeit to greater or lesser degrees; however, this lack of uniform tyranny on the ground does not imply that some form of uniform tyranny does not already exist at the global level of governance.
The magic behind "none are safe until all are safe" is it renders all places vulnerable to ruthless tyranny. Those in areas with relaxed measures or in areas governed by independently-minded politicians should not fall into the trap of becoming overly complacent about their situations. In a world ruled by the "none are safe until all are safe" edict, circumstances can change in an instant and the age-old assurance of "that will never happen" can evaporate as quickly as a drop of water hitting a red-hot frying pan.
What I find immensely fascinating (as well as indescribably depressing) is the continuing lack of awareness the masses continue to display in the face of obvious totalitarianism. Tell most people that we are all being effectively been crushed under the heel of global dictatorial boot, and they are bound to stare at you and scornfully question your sanity.
If pressed about mandatory pecks, I suspect most people would reply in the following manner:
"Well, I'm going to get the peck voluntarily regardless . . . you know, because none are safe until all are safe, and I want to show everyone how nice and caring I am. I also want to be sure I don't die from this horrible, terrible virus. So for me, pecking is a real win-win. Sure, the pecks are still technically in the experimental stages, but I trust experts. I mean, just look at all the effective measures they've taken over the past year. Boy, without those measures, things could have really gotten grim.
Anyway, if pecking were obligatory - which would never happen because we live in a democracy and have inalienable human rights - but if for some weird reason it suddenly were to become mandatory, and I were to object the idea of mandatory pecking - which I never would because I am nice and caring and definitely not one of those crazy anti-peckers - why I would just write to my local, democratically-elected representative or file a petition with the human rights court. I mean, when all is said done, we have rights over own bodies . . . bodily integrity, I think they call it . . . and our society is full of dedicated, hardworking people who ensure those personal rights and liberties are never violated. Anyway, thankfully we don't have to worry about any of that because we live in free democracies full of nice, caring people who definitely aren't racist."
Let's get back to the vigorous virologist and see what he has to say about democracies:
"In a democratic country one can trust sensible people realise that it is their interest to be inoculated. If one is in capable of this [realisation] they must be forced. One way is that the police will detain them, and another way is to issue green cards granting special rights to those vaccinated. If one has one of these they can go to cafeterias, the movies and board airplanes. And if one doesn’t they cannot do any of these things," said Duda.
Sensible people in "democracies" do what their totalitarian rulers tell them to do. Insensible people who don't will be arrested and forced into pecking or into exile.
So in our much vaunted democracies, a citizen's choice might very well boil down to choosing between perpetual lock down or perpetual lock out. Or physical death.
As for the human rights angle, here's a recently delivered verdict from European Court of Human Rights in response to a group of parents from Czechia who resisted mandatory vaccination for their children before the outbreak of the birdemic:
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has backed the Czech Republic in its requirement for mandatory pre-school vaccinations.
The case was brought by families who were fined or whose children were refused entry to pre-schools because they had not been vaccinated.
In a landmark ruling, the court found that while the Czech policy interfered with the right to a private life, there was a need to protect public health.
All the cases pre-date the pandemic.
However, the issue of routine childhood vaccinations has come under increasing scrutiny due to the spread of Covid-19.
This is the first ruling from the ECHR on compulsory vaccination against childhood diseases.
The judges backed the Czech legislation by 16 to 1.
"The... measures could be regarded as being 'necessary in a democratic society'" the court said, adding: "The objective has to be that every child is protected against serious diseases, through vaccination or by virtue of herd immunity."
Keep in mind that this ruling was for a case predating the birdemic. Nonetheless, the "none are safe until all are safe" ethos is already prevalent. Yes, the Czech policy interfered with personal rights, but this is superseded by the need to protect the public. All simply must be safe. Period.
I find the frank admission of evil in the court's ruling quite unremarkable - it's exactly the sort of thing you expect to see after things have come to a point.
If anything, the birdemic has only fortified this ethos, very much implying that the "normal" ethos of democracy and human rights - which was always a sham - has been completely discarded.
Tyranny is on full display everywhere you turn, and it intensifies with every passing day; yet still, barely anyone notices.
But I do. And maybe you do, too.
I don't know about you, but the more of it I see, the more of it I experience, the closer I draw to the freedom no worldly tyranny will ever be able to strip away.
In my experience, nothing sends Christians - or even secular atheists for that matter - running for the exits faster than the mention of "mysticism."
The negative reaction is somewhat understandable. After all, "mystical" things have a tendency to come off sounding bizarrely esoteric, incomprehensibly strange, painfully embarrassing, or downright silly. Though I believe in the supernatural, I personally harbor an aversion to "mystical" things myself.
Having said that, I will come right out and say that I firmly believe the future of Christianity, nay the future of humanity, depends on the successful unfolding of mysticism. Not an exciting but otherwise cringe-inducing sacred-crystal, chanting- shaman, energy-field, time-travel, astral-projection, fortune-telling kind of mysticism, but an equally exciting though admittedly less decorative form of mysticism rooted in thinking.
On the subject of thinking, Bruce Charlton has written an excellent post on the importance of primary thinking, which could also be termed heart thinking, divine thinking, or direct knowing.
Dr. Charlton calls this "mysticism", but immediately makes the effort to explain that this does not entail "meditating in the lotus position, using magical technologies (tarot, astrology, etc); nor does it require "spectacular spiritual or religious experiences (like overwhelming visions, near death experiences or striking paranormal events)", but rather:
In a nutshell, it is a kind of thinking that I regard as a higher state - I have called it primary thinking, heart thinking, and direct knowing - the state of Final Participation; and it simply amounts to a conscious and chosen thinking in the divine way; with and from that which is divine in me; and aligned with/in-harmony-with God's divine motivations and purposes.
It is me, my-self, joining with God in God's work. It is therefore a creative state, and not merely a contemplative state. In it I add to divine creation (I do not mean merely become aware of it, nor do I immerse in it).
For me, creativity is what we are meant to do, we are meant to be active participants in God's creation - that for me, is what the mission of Jesus was all about.
This matches my own intuitive understanding of what Christianity is meant to do and what we are meant to be doing within Christianity in this time and place - especially in this time and place.
At first glance, what Dr. Charlton presents hardly seems like mysticism at all. On top of that, thinking in the divine way does not appear to qualify as "doing." After all, thinking is thinking and doing and doing, so how could harmonizing the thoughts from my deepest, innermost self with God and creation possibly be considered a form of "doing."
What, if anything, is actually being "done"?
What Dr. Charlton explains above is likely to strike most as little more than "wishful thinking" - and therein lies the crux of the problem.
Though the resistance Christians experience when they encounter ideas like primary thinking is somewhat understandable, it does not excuse the fact that the bulk of this resistance likely does not stem from their deepest, innermost being - what Dr. Charlton calls the divine self.
Resistance to the kind of mysticism Dr. Charlton espouses also tends to originate from the misguided belief that primary thinking and other "mystical" aspects of Christianity are not really Christianity at all but thinly-veiled anti-Christian heresies. As such, the mere mention of creativity or direct knowing or primary thinking is enough to inspire "fear and trembling" in the hearts of most conventional Christians.
Furthermore, I believe a great deal of the opposition to "mystical" aspects of Christianity like direct knowing and creativity are rooted in a limited understanding of the mission of Jesus, which is commonly restricted to salvation and willfully blind to aspect of theosis.
Nikolai Berdyaev addresses this point quite lucidly in his The Meaning of the Creative Act:
Salvation from sin, from perdition, is not the final purpose of religious life: salvation is always from something and life should be for something. Many things unnecessary for salvation are needed for the very purpose for which salvation is necessary - for the creative upsurge of being. Man's chief end is not to be saved, but to mount up, creatively.
The "mystical" aspect of Christianity resides in this for, and as far as I can tell, this for aspect of Christ's mission remains a source of great doubt, uncertainty, and yes, even fear, among Christians.
And for the life of me I cannot understand why.
It seems as if Christians cannot bring themselves to accept that Christianity depends on a shift in consciousness; that is, on a shift in how we think about, understand, and relate to God, ourselves, and others.
Perhaps they believe this sort of shift is inherently sinful. Perhaps they believe it is unattainable. Perhaps they fear it will lead them astray and lead them into some tangled thicket of progressivism. Whatever the case, a great many Christians hold nothing but reservations when it comes to anything involving the kind of "mystical" thinking Dr. Charlton and other thinkers such as Steiner, Barfield, and Berdyaev have outlined.
Like the Christians in Dostoevsky's Legend of the Grand Inquisitor, modern Christians appear unwilling or incapable of accepting the "mystical" gift of spiritual freedom Christ offers. At the same time, I have encountered many modern Christians who - in light of everything that has transpired since the successful birdemic coup of 2020 - sadly lament about the apparent unresponsiveness of God.
Though I empathize with the frustration and disappointment such Christians have no doubt endured over the past year or more, I can't help but feel a bit frustrated and disappointed by their apparent lack of interest in exploring the possible reasons behind God's seeming unresponsiveness. It rarely, if ever, occurs to them that God's unresponsiveness might have nothing to do with God and everything to do with them; more specifically, with their attempts to communicate with God; that God's silence may be a sign of wisdom and patience rather than of neglect and indifference.
In a post from last year, I suggested God's apparent unresponsiveness to conventional forms of divine communication may in fact be God's way of prompting Christians to reconsider their manner of communication:
I believe God is our loving father, and that he desires what is best for his children. Like all loving fathers, God wants his children to grow up and mature.
This entails different approaches to and different levels of communication. God has taken this step forward; we in turn, have not.
Put another way, God is trying to talk to us like adults, but we continue to talk and listen to him like adolescents (and fairly apathetic adolescents at that).
God will respond to us once we understand how we should begin responding to him. Part of responding to him as adults must contain an element of understanding our role as Co-Creators.
According to Berdyaev, the next step in Christianity involves not only Man discovering himself in God, but also God discovering Himself in Man. This type of discovery necessitates a new, unprecedented form of co-respondence.
It includes viewing God from an entirely new perspective - not as some distant, autocratic ruler one must obsequiously and blindly tremble before and obey, but a relatable friend and partner one can love and work cooperatively with, in the same manner an adult son or daughter can love and work cooperatively with a loving parent.
The co-creation Berdyaev speaks of involves a recognition of our latent spiritual creativity. This creativity is not the same as or equal to God's, but serves to complement it. By the same token, God's creativity is not the same as Man's, but God's creativity alone no longer appears sufficient.
God is not responding to us because our communications with him are not creative. God will respond to us fully the moment we begin creatively communicating with Him.
Once we learn to do that, we become Co-Creators. Our creative spirituality will become enhanced through God, and God's creative spirituality will become enhanced through us.
The new co-respondence involves a fortifying and enhancement of both God and Man, a fortification and enhancement that can occur only when we understand our creative role.
In my mind, the form of "mysticism" Dr. Charlton describes is key to the kind of communication to which God will respond - a form of mysticism rooted in a change about how we think about, understand, and relate to God, ourselves, and others. Moreover, this form of "mysticism", this shift in consciousness is supported by the Fourth Gospel and by many religious thinkers including Steiner, Barfield, and Berdyaev.
Concerning this shift in consciousness, Berdyaev offers the following in Freedom and Slavery:
We are entering an epoch of new spirituality that will correspond to the new form of mysticism. It will no longer be possible to argue against a heightened spiritual and mystical life that human nature is sinful and that sin must first be overcome. A heightened spiritual and mystical life is the road to victory over sin. And the world is entering a catastrophic period of choice and division, when these will be required of all Christians, an uplifting and intensification of their inner lives.
The external, everyday, moderate Christianity is breaking up. But eternal, inward, mystical Christianity is becoming better established. And within mysticism itself a 'paraclete' type is beginning to predominate. The epoch of new spirituality in Christianity can only be an epoch of a great and hitherto unheard of manifestation of the Holy Spirit.
Berdyaev's encapsulation of 'a heightened spiritual and mystical life' resides in his idea of creativity and the creative act, which mirrors the "creative state" Dr. Charlton describes at the beginning of this post.
In essence, creativity occurs when we are able to access our innermost selves - the spiritual, divine core that lays nestled in each and every one of us. During such times, our thoughts align and are in harmony with God. We realize we are not passive cogs in a meaningless machine doomed to entropy, but active creators who are able to not only influence, but actually manifest creation in this time and in time yet-to-come.
Berdyaev refers to this as the divine-human revelation - "the crowning of the mystical dialectic of the divine and the human" - and states it will not only provide a new revelation of God to man, but also a new revelation of man to God. In The Destiny of Man, Berdyaev emphasizes the role of consciousness in this revelation:
The opening of a new epoch of the Spirit, which will include higher achievements of spirituality, presupposes a radical change and a new orientation in human consciousness. This will be a revolution of consciousness which hitherto has been considered something static. The religion of man's maturity, leaving behind him his childhood and adolescence.
In a nutshell, a great deal of the "mysticism" Dr. Charlton describes via his explanations of primary thinking, direct knowing, heart thinking, and creativity amounts to discovering how to communicate with God in a manner through which we fully experience God's responses to our communications.
I believe this "mystical" aspect of Christianity is crucial here and now, particularly because a great many Christians in this time and place feel let down by their churches or feel God may have abandoned them or has become unresponsive to their prayers.
But this "mystical" aspect of Christianity cannot be forced or compelled. Each Christian is free to explore it according to his or her own individual circumstances and situation. By the same token, each Christian is also free to reject the "mysticism" of creativity, direct knowing, or heart thinking, but before doing so, each Christian should - at the very least - entertain the possibility that the "mysticism" Dr. Charlton outlines may actually be a positive way forward.
At the same time, traditionally-minded Christians who attend church and participate in conventional forms of Christianity should not consider creativity and primary thinking as being diametrically-opposed to their current practices. If anything, I humbly suggest they give the "mystical" approach described in this post "a try" and maintain it as supplementary to their current practices.
When all is said and done, the "mystical" aspect of Christianity can be roughly boiled down to intuition - to thinking from oneself rather than for oneself (H/T to Kevin McCall at No Longer Reading for this phrase). Needless to say, the from in this case refers to our deepest, innermost selves - our divine core; from that which makes us all a son or daughter of God.
I, for one, do not find anything fear-inducing, silly, cringe-worthy, or potentially heretical in that at all.
Note added: Creativity or primary thinking is not a substitute for salvation, but builds upon salvation. In this sense, salvation is primary and must come first.
Further note added: I have, presumably, not done justice to Dr. Charlton's many insights into primary thinking, final participation, and heart thinking and suggest visiting his site and keyword searching these terms at his blog.
That doesn't mean that the System has to be within us.
System-distancing is not about physically removing yourself from the System, but about spiritually separating yourself from the System.
Though noble in theory, physically separating yourself from the System is a virtual impossibility. Like it or not, we are all physically connected to the System to some degree or other.
Moreover, nearly all of us rely upon the System to physically survive in this world. Even the most independent, isolated, and self-sufficient homesteaders in the world must turn to the System from time-to-time to ensure their continued viability. Hence, any notion of completely disentangling ourselves from the System in the material sense must be put to rest.
Nevertheless, material dependence on the System does not negate the possibility of spiritual independence from the System.
At first glance, the power dynamics implied by what I have written above appear totally skewed in favor of the System. All the System has to do to make us physically suffer is withdraw the essentials we need in order to live. In this sense, the System literally possesses the power of life and death over each and every one of us.
But this power is limited to our mortal lives in this world and cannot extend beyond that unless we grant it the permission to do so.
The forces behind the System are not really interested in our mortal deaths. One way or another, we will all face physical death in this world.
Spiritual death is what the forces behind the System obsess over.
Though the System possesses the power to hold our physical lives in the balance, it is utterly powerless when it comes to the matter of our spiritual life or death.
That part is solely up to us . . .
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Blogs/Sites I Read
Bruce Charlton's Notions
Meeting the Masters
From The Narrow Desert
No Longer Reading
Fourth Gospel Blog
Synlogos ✞ Aggregator