This is a lot of useful info here, but a bit chaotic
Email exchange: Vedic, sanskrit, dravidian, OIT and AIT, homo sapiens and soul, Egyptian and soul tradition? sufi baraka and thieves of baraka
Re: Sv: Sv: Advaita..goofy question of the week: If pace Advaiata the universe is conscious, should it have to mediate to raise its consciousness? (semantic computer crash here)
Date: Thu, Sep 10, 2020 2:44 pm
We don’t have the antecedents( this refers to the email below): the whole thing is made to look like it derives from the Aryan legacy and the Vedas…
The transcription of some earlier tradition into Sanskrit is behind an iron curtain that slams shut.
But the traditional sources left traces in the later: references to constellations
that can be dated to the Neolithic.
They were faithfully translated into Sanskrit and confused everyone.
There we no Sanskrit in the neolithic.
As I noted one scholar: Danielou, claimed that there was
a Dravidian antecedent translated into now obscure texts:
I will try to find the book.
But the illusion that the Aryans produced Indic
spirituality has been made a dogmatic myth
and it is rubbish. And Indians become belligerent on this
or at least the fundamentalists.
Rajneesh denounced such nonsense.
The last generation has seen the invasion of Hindutva
idiocy which Rajneesh first noticed and denounced.
You can’t research this in English! Need many languages…
The Out of India versus Aryan Invasion Theory debate is ferocious
but the Out of India claims are silly: the Aryans started in India
and wandered out of India to Europe, etc…utter nonsense.
The point is that the tradition may well be earlier, but not
in the Vedic or later Sanskrit. Languages change very fast
and no such thing as Indo-European, let alone Vedic or Sanskrit
existed then. The best theory has the Indo-Europeans sourcing
in central Asia, or thereabouts…The most ancient Indo-European can hardly
predate 3000/4000 BCE and in a form that is very distant from Vedic Sanskrit.
Vedic Sanskrit and Homeric Greek are very comparable,
and maybe also Mycenaean Greek. 1200 BCE to the classical period, very roughly
By the time of Buddha, please note, Sanskrit is gone and we get Pali
a vastly changed IE language descended from Vedic, I presume.
That’s five centuries or so and the language is totally different.
The proto-IE from ca. 3000 wouldn’t be recognizable, who knows,
consult some experts here…And of course the same would be true
of Dravidian languages. We may have the same problem with Dravidians,
they may predate the Aryans, but their own time frame is unknown to me.
The invention of writing didn’t reach India or Greece until the late second
millennium, the Minoan/Mycenaean apart. So there were no written sutras until very late.
I suspect that the whole tradition was oral and to this day
a lot of Hinduism, including stuff from the Vedic period
is memorized and oral. Ancient yogas in oral
forms are entirely believable. Look at Patanjali’s yoga sutras,
a few hundred lines, easy to memorize. They are very late
So the Vedic scriptures are late concoctions. They don’t
prefigure the spiritual tradition at all. But suddenly with the
later ‘Vedic’ material, i.e. the Upanishads, the classic
spiritual tradition resurfaces. The idea that they develop
from the Vedas is a total scam.
You might be interested in Danielou, a controversial
but often insightful scholar.
The Bhagavad Gita is another bizarre fraud. The idea
that it is the Indian Bible is rubbish, although it was pressed
into service for that and many believe it.
Real yogis don’t need a book like the Gita.
Gandhi used the text to preach non-violence
but the text explicitly entails violence
as Khrishna speaks to Arjun telling him to fight.
What was Gandhi thinking.
The real non-violent tradition is Jain (and
it influenced Gandhi)
I would not waste much time on Gurdjieff’s statement that India did philosophy, Egypt Theory, and …etc
What on earth was he thinking? Best to stay clear of it and not try to use it to deduce anything.
The term ‘theoria’ has some kind of legacy, maybe one aspect of G’s statement.
I will hazard a speculation about Egyptian legacies: the spiritual tech of the ”soul” is very ancient
and was known to Gurdjieff and appears in Sufism, in a few, very few, of its groups.
I ran across it and discuss it in my book nemonemini and Ravings of the Masts.
Here’s my speculation: this tradition like so many appears in the Neolithic in pre-sand Egypt,
one of Gurdjieff’s pet ideas and then passes into Dynastic Egypt in some fashion connected
with all the endless paintings of soul/death issues. It then enters early Christianity, but then dies out
but persists in some form in Islamic Sufism.
There is perhaps a possibility that there is an obscure esoteric tradition in modern Egypt, and a figure like Gurdjieff
often got a ticket to the front row and met people others never meet.
But he doesn’t say anything verifiable or practical.
The issue of the soul is very confusing: as Bennett claims the soul appears in early homo sapiens,
a very controversial but to me correct claim.
But then what is the later ‘soul’ question that so obsesses Gurdjieff, and which appears in Sufism?
I can’t answer but it may be the difference between the ordinary soul of ordinary species man
and some esoteric process of the so-called ‘completed man’.
I don’t know, but at least I consider that homo sapiens has a built-in soul, a term rejected by science,
but that would be a mistake. The soul is material but in a very special form. It is really the overall mind complex which
Anyway, the mind/body of man is complex and some part of that survives death (the Tibetan book of
the Dead deals with this, and suggests that the outer mind is stripped away but something passes through
death). It is a typical Tibetan set of memes. Who understands any of it. Then there is spooky physics
and the suspicion, despite howls of protest from official physicists, that the deep mind at the fringe of
space/time actually has a component entanglement beyond space/time.
I will have to relink Ravings of the Masts from dropbox…btw thanks for informing me about dropbox.
You might read Thieves of Baraka in my autobio nemonemini. (I will reissue it soon).There is a difference between soul and
baraka, I guess, an obscure point. It would seem obvious they are different, but ripping off soul cashed out as baraka, soon gone. I once had a kind of dose of baraka in just that way but it was stolen by a strange sufi who appeared
for a few hours and then disappeared, with the baraka. It was near the Gold oufit, but no connection. And the soul factor disappeared with it. That was in downtown Los Angeles. For a sufi of that degree
of knowledge to appear in LA is spooky, and terrifying. They would have been glad to have killed me for finding out their game.
I was never a part of Sufism but at the fringe where I found out a lot of things. Sufis are the biggest bums in spiritual history
and I often flip the bird in their direction. The mountains of Afghanistan.
It is funny, but Kipling in the Man Who Would Be King sensed something about sufis, but his book ended up spinning a fake yarn.
The idea of hidden Sufis in the mountains of the Afghan is about right. To have enemies in the mountains of Afghanistan you have never met
and want to kill you is the end of the path, Frodo meets Gollum. Nuts.
Baraka is like a drug that produces instant enlightenment. If rogue sufis find out you have baraka they
creep up on you and steal it.
Forget Sufis: the path to enlightenment is beyond spiritual energy games. If you become enlightened you
are finished for good. No one can steal anything.
Google, ‘masts’, they are the train wrecks of Sufism. Meher Baba took them under his wing.
As to Kipling, it is eerie that he stumbled onto sufism without knowing it. His book was made
into a movie, check it out. He didn’t understand the issue and turned the sufis into a preposterous
From: A. C.
Sent: Thu, Sep 10, 2020 8:30 am
Subject: Sv: Sv: Advaita..goofy question of the week: If pace Advaiata the universe is conscious, should it have to mediate to raise its consciousness? (semantic computer crash here)
I have far less knowledge than you on the matter of Hinduism. I’d be interested to know, if you could elaborate, what are the more specific features of the Vedic scriptures that separates them from earlier antecedents in the earliest ‘Hinduism’?
Where exactly does the Bhagavad Gita fit in? I thought that was the main book in Hinduism?
When it comes to Gurdjieff and Egypt it seems one should be able to confirm whether there is anything in the religion resembling a “theory” that involves anything he was talking about, or if there is a possibility of even being initiated anymore (or at the time he was alive). Since Gurdjieff is directly pointing to a source there we could potentially confirm bullshit, but maybe he said it because he knows people can’t make sense of Egyptian religion… I wonder where G actually said he was initiated in Egypt four times, it was not in ISOM…
Will versus ‘consciousness’, Samkhya and will, antiquity illusion in hinduism, transcribed sutras from Dravidian?, Jainism
Reply to email below this one: The issue of the antiquity of Hinduism has long puzzled many, but part of the answer as per below is that the Hinduism we see
is relatively recent.
Re: Sv: Advaita..goofy question of the week: If pace Advaiata the universe is conscious, should it have to mediate to raise its consciousness? (semantic computer crash here)
Date: Wed, Sep 9, 2020 2:35 pm
Note that Bennett’s schemata make ‘will’ in the triad expansion (so reminiscent of Samkhya) the fundamental:
the three, six, twelve, twenty-four, forty-eight, and ninety-six laws.
Although I find it hard to understand his thinking here it is appropriate
to make will the fundamental, and further, the issue has support in
the western philosophy legacy via Schopenhauer as noted before.
And of Christian theology of the Trinitarian legacy.
But it then becomes a question of what Schopenhauer means by will.
It is not psychological will but something closer to the idea of a scientific law
but more subtle and not so reductionist??? You have my essay here?
The eonic effect shows you are right, although it is not a law of destruction and renewal.
Things that emerge in civilization contribute to its future,
but the evidence shows that religions tend to fade away in each new era or epoch.
Your example of Egyptian religion is apt. but note that it takes time. Egyptian religion
took a long time to die out, note Cleopatra in the time of Caesar is surrounded by the
the old priesthood, if you will excuse evidence from the Hollywood movie.
The question of Hinduism is tricky: it does go back many millennia, I suspect
to the Neolithic. But that is misleading. The sutras in Sanskrit are an Axial era
innovation. The Upanishads are an Axial Age product (of course with antecedents0
The Vedic scriptures are ‘bogus traditional sources, with the upanishads something else, and created by the Aryan invaders. They have no
antecedents in the earliest ‘Hinduism’, although the Upanishads point to something more ancient. Patanjali is an Axial era figure, I suspect.
The whole legacy is recast in the wake of the Axial era, so it is all essentially ‘new’.
There is a book (I am trying to recall the author) claiming to show that the Indic
tradition still has the transcriptions of the pre-Aryan spiritual literature
which was probably aural and then put into Sanskrit. It is barely known..
Dravidian proto-Hinduism sounds right, but even that is unlikely to
be the medium for a Neolithic original version. People who discuss
these questions don’t understand linguistics and seem to think Sanskrit
could have existed in the Neolithic, nonsense. Hindu traditionalists are
infuriated by such statements, so they are hardly traditionalist, but
Arjun come lately types.
so we have a serious ‘hey wait a minute’, almost all of what we call
Hinduism has already changed and the older tradition had no Sanskrit.
Note that Jainism must have gone back a long way but in the Axial Age
we see Mahavira (who knew and met Gautama) who is the last of the
Teertankers (or ‘Jain buddhas’. People don’t realize that Jainism essentially
died out after Mahavira although it continued to some degree but in a new
formulation of Mahavira, the last of 24 such ‘buddhas’. Jainism most strangely seems
to yield the future to the Buddhist experiment and itself with twenty four exemplars at a century
apiece goes back two millennia (????). So we see clearly that the Indian legacy while old is basically also new.
So the real question is whether Hinduism will survive much longer in the modern era.
I think we have the solution to the Hindu paradox
Gurdjieff is not trustworthy and you can’t trust what he says. But he does claim that Egypt
had an esoteric line but that that would not be the old Egyptian religion.
Such people might be hidden Sufis of some kind who carry on some older
Be wary ofGurdjieff: you never know when he is lying, and makes statements that servehis interests
and leaves people confused for life.He doesn’t even care. The whole Gurdjieff line via Ouspensky is mostly
yarns or disinformation.
From: A. C.
Sent: Wed, Sep 9, 2020 8:05 am
Subject: Sv: Advaita..goofy question of the week: If pace Advaiata the universe is conscious, should it have to mediate to raise its consciousness? (semantic computer crash here)
You bring up a good question. As I read your letter I had the thought that if the universe is conscious then it needs a something to be conscious of. Otherwise how can it truly be conscious? It doesn’t make sense then to say that nothing but consciousness exists (though you might say that various levels of consciousness that can be aware of each other can exist).
Another thought occured to me. In general I have so far been expecting all the religions to deteriorate and disappear over time. Most of the ancient “pagan” belief systems or traditions have been lost and one can witness that Christianity is also loosing its influence and status in the West. However, Hinduism poses a defiant contrast to this in that it has not been lost or deteriorated much, it has only grown and become more complex/diverse over time and survived the “Axial Age” transformation into a new religion like Buddhism, while Egyptian religion did not survive the same transformation into Judaism.
I wonder what made it survive the “law of destruction and renewal”? Perhaps there is something either fundamentally true and “eternal” about the basis of Hinduism, or there is something about it that produces a kind of stagnation and passivity where it makes no sense for such a culture to try to strive for new things or evolve?
But there are still priests of the old Egyptian religion left are there not? The website http://www.gurdjiefflegacy.org/60gine/ claims here that: “Gurdjieff said he had been four times through the Initiate Mysteries of Egypt.” Now I don’t know how he could have been initiated without someone initiating him…? I wonder if there is an egyptian equivalent to the law of three? He said India only had “philosophy” while the theory was in Egypt.
Another exchange, buddhism and hindu reformation…goofy question with a point about bad new age terminology
Re: Advaita..goofy question of the week: If pace Advaiata the universe is conscious, should it have to mediate to raise its consciousness? (semantic computer crash here)
Date: Tue, Sep 8, 2020 11:25 am
The question of Hinduism is very complex and I would adopt different perspectives: as a student of history it is
an immense field of study and one of the great complexes in world history.
In terms of religion now it is a confusing and treacherous labyrinth hard to navigate.
Just the history of Advaita is hard to deal with.
In general, Hinduism spawned Buddhism but the latter failed as a Reformation
and the archaic Hinduism persists.
Who knows the future?
We have been discussing raja yoga, but the resemblance
to Buddhism is odd: many suspect that hinduism took over
some things it didn’t need to compete with buddhists.
Even gurus like Rajneesh threw up his hands and wondered
if the whole thing might not just collapse and dissipate finally.
Much of Hinduism goes back to the Neolithic?
The Buddhists had a brilliant continuation as a Reformation
but they were not able to reduce the whole of Hinduism
from its diversity and were finally driven away. The same
thing happened btw with the Protestant Reformation:
It started to take over from Catholicism, but then the
CounterReformation successfully made a comeback.
I have heard people looking at the evangelical wasteland
in the Protestant field and with things like the Prosperity Gospel
of greed christian capitalists despair of the whole question
and look back at Catholicism as at least secure against total idiots.
Who knows. I think pace the eonic model that Christianity and Judaism are
passing away, but such things obviously have their own stubborn persistence.
Very few religions survive beyond a given age period. But Hinduism is different:
it doesn’t survive: it changes but keeps the same label. It is not one thing.
It was odd to think one ‘buddha could challenge the thousands of yogis
stretched over millennia.
As far as Advaita is concerned the typical Youtube brand invoking
quantum physics and claiming that as Atman equals Brahman
the whole universe is somehow conscious doesn’t work
The term conscious, and this is a strange joke, always equivocates into two,
consciousness and self-consciousness, or consciousness and mindfulness consciousness
or Gurjieff’s consciousness and self-remembering consciousness.
So our western new age Advaita fan who thinks that if Atman equals Brahman then the
universe is conscious is in for a surprise question: is nature conscious?
If so nature would have to take a mindfulness workshop and meditate since it is
in the lower ‘state of consciousness’ next to higher consciousness. We just turned the corner
The original sense here doesn’t seem to translate.
An exchange on ‘being’, ‘being, function, will’, and ‘Decoding World History: the novel as form factor’…
Re: Sv: Sv: Hello..or goodbye
Date: Fri, Sep 4, 2020 7:29 am
Bennett is saying that, not me. I think he is right but keep in mind the confusion over the term ‘Being’. It has also entered philosophy and has now a huge
and complex literature from Heidegger to Tillich (but Plato was the first). The simplicity of the term can get lost. You use (as an English speaker) the term over and over all day long,
but if someone asks you to explain it, you become confused, like the tale of the centipede.
Let me suggest this:
If you meditate you often feel a sense of ‘being’ (in part because you are motionless, just ‘being’), or increased being. But that is really a change or increase of consciousness.
We see a connection there. That a rock has being is so obvious it is confusing. Is this same usage of the term.
I think finally it is. But rocks are not conscious, so strictly speaking the usage is inconsistent, as you immediately sense. The issue is really correct in a larger sense: it makes no sense to
divide ‘consciousness’ from material questions. Scientists are right to consider a unity of explanation, but then get reductionist which drives people to distinguish ‘matter’ and ‘consciousness’. But the question of a unity is probably right. Finally the term ‘consciousness’ has entered the realm of quantum
mechanics. The amount of new age nonsense there is alarming, but the issue of consciousness in physics is now a fact of life, as physicists wring their hands.
Keep in mind in reading Bennett (or any book on spiritual subjects with special terminology) that he often confuses people. Writers often have insights
and make complex statements that readers don’t understand. Bennett creates terminology that can be confusing. ‘Being function, will’ are perhaps like that.
The way Bennett defines his terms seems strange because ‘matter’ disappears
In the end, I think Bennett is right: He opens DU with a discussion of the basic substance of experience: material and being question are connected with consciousness.
To replace matter with ‘being and function’ isn’t any big metaphysical mystery. It is just a different way to slice the pie.
The term ‘will’ in Bennett is obviously confusing, but the term enters from Gurdjieff and also from philosophy.
Your will is confusing, is it free will? That’s a long debate. But will exists whether ‘free’ or not. Will is like the title
deed to a property. In part it exists but does nothing. ??? It seems to be ‘ego’ and then not so. Here Schopenhauer
can be helpful and I suspect Bennett read him. The ‘will’ is the ‘thing in itsefl’ like Kant’s ‘noumenon’. The will is ‘free’ because
it is in a different ‘dimension’ or spaceless nothing: it can be free because it is not a part of physics. That the will is not the ego
is confusing, but on reflection, the right approach.
Bennett invokes will
but it is apparently a part of ordinary physics.It needs some kind of definition then. But Bennett is probably following
Gurdjieff who knew a lot about will, and about magical will, a sufi trait: look at that sufi ‘jesus’. His miracles are myths now
but the real history of such a sufi manifested the ‘will’ somehow, so it is rumored as rumor turns to myth.
Every man alive has activated his will and performed a miracle at least once in his life, but never realized it.
So Jesus has no monopoly here.
It would seem the ‘magical will’ is really the same as ‘enlightenment’. But now in the age of Crowley people
perform rituals to invoke their magical will, disaster in the making, pure Faustian idiocy, with Mephisto not fa behind.
Seek ye first the void of ‘real enlightenment’ and the magical will may well follow.
But it is true the buddhist/yogic ways speak little of the ‘will’, perhaps the source of their success.
Success of the yogi, maybe not the disciple. You should quietly invoke your ‘will’ in the minimum
sense of following your own path, and keep the will quietly in background as you sit quietly doing nothing.
Be very wary here.for most the magical will is the path to demonhood, as with Gurdjieff.
They are psycopaths of the path: they think there is no karmic process.
The form factor in the eonic model is a desperate effort to try to find some metaphor or explanation for
a phenomenon we don’t understand. The example of the ‘novel’ is however, I think, more or less right.
But the overall process is more complex. The point is that ‘system action’ and ‘free agency’ are related
in the creation of civilization by men, but men who are infused with creative energy, a term however
that isn’t scientific.
I recommend a book or two, three, on archaic Greece. You will see at once what is meant.
enough for the moment….
John Landon…I will put his online at the blog, again…
Keep going with WHEE, you are right, it is not as hard as it looks.
The model and its terminology are simple metaphors, not metaphysics
and easy to use, e.g. ‘stream and sequence’, etc…
Another exchange. Advaita, Kant, Schopenauer, antinomies…
Date: Sun, Sep 6, 2020 10:22 am
There are some new words I need to get used to as I read WHEE, such as “Antinomy”…
Also, sorry to change the subject for a moment, but what do you think of Advaita? I recall you trying to assess it at the end of Debriefing Gurdjieff which seemed like it was a couple of years ago, so maybe you have thought more about it since then. Advaita Vedanta seems to teach that reality is merely an illusion. I also came across a statement that said Schopenhauer had similar ideas of reality or the external world not existing or something. Such a perspective or teaching makes me wonder what exactly it is supposed to lead to because it seems to me that such a view trivializes anything going on at the phenomenal level, making even something like the evolution of civilization a part of Maya or illusion. It is very difficult to speak about real things with kids today who are into this stuff because they dismiss it all as illusion anyway.
If Schopenhauer was influenced by Kant, did Kant also entertain the idea of reality being an illusion? Or is this just the Hindu influence on Schopenhauer? It seems to me you are a critic of Hinduism, which is refreshing, but I did not see your comment on the reality as illusion issue yet
Above is your original post, and I discussed the issue of the antinomies.
Advaita is a difficult subject, but I actually had something critical to say about it
which I put in one of my other two books on New Age subjects, one is ‘Ravings of the Masts’.
The other is What is the Path, all kindle at amazon.
I let them slide into the background:
Those books archives, not really books.
The issue of Advaita is vast and classic with an immense western following.
I may retract my criticism or set it to one side and go over Advaita again at The Gurdjieff Con.
Again speaking in general about reality as illusion is mostly pointless. If you mean that
reality follows the classic antinomies you have a case, but the general usage here as a sort
of disillusion isn’t right. That thinking is taken as an excuse to proceed without ethics
or any restraint as a kind of ‘so what’. That’s a mess made out of the original thought.
Advaita should be examined: You might like Nisargadhata: he is the best, next
to Ramana Maharsi. Use google.
But Advaita has turned into a mess in the west with a lot of self-styled gurus
and a confused take on the issue. Then there is the fellow Eckhart Tolle
about whom I can’t speak.
The problem I had with Advaita is that something has gone wrong, or got lost
The Advaita path proceeds to consider that Atman is Brahman, a beautiful
and classic teaching.
But what does it mean? It has lead to a lot of basic physics on Youtube about
how the universe is conscious, etc…Is it? Recall our discussions, isn’t ‘will’, a la Schopenhauer better? The core idea in translation
is to me fallacious.
Still the experience of people like Ramana Maharsi is a huge ad for Advaita
but I doubt he followed advaita himself. Hard to resolve…
Schopenhauer rescued Kant from obscurity with his classic style.
But his thinking is very close to but different from Kant, in non-essential ways, to be sure.
The issue of ‘illusion’ has been vulgarized and needs to be left behind.
After all, the best source for all that may as well be quantum mechanics
Sent: Sun, Sep 6, 2020 9:24 am
Subject: Re: Advaita
The antinomies are discussed in the second part of Kant’s CPR in the section called Dialectic.
They are fundamental to understanding Kant and Schopenhauer, and reality in general.
We rarely notice such contradictions: one of the most famous is the antithesis with is an antinomy
or contraction, there is a beginning in time, there is no beginning in time. The contradiction argues both ways
and can’t be resolved. Now look at the last century of physics: The thesis of the Big Bang emerged and displaced
Hoyle’s steady-state, and now the argument is starting all over again, etc..Physicists won’t say so but they are caught up in that Kantian antinomy. Is there a beginning in time or not? We can still accept Big Bang thinking
in any case, but the point is that a basic contradiction here pervades our thinking, and this set of contradictions or antinomies
There is another, there is an end of space, there is no end of space, …
Taken together these contradictions undermine our sense of reality and show the way to ‘transcendental idealism’.
The idea of reality as ‘illusion’ skirts this kind of discussion, but I am wary of agreeing with anyone who talks that way:
You might interpret Kant that way, but first you have to read him. Instead the idea that ‘it’s all illusion’ is made in a general
way in conversation bey people who have lost the meaning of someone like Kant. So it is isn’t helpful to say ‘it’s all illusion’.
Let me recommend a book by Bryan Magee on Schopenhauer and Kant the issues there, including the antinomies.
(which were discovered by the Greeks)
The antinomies rapidly lead to a direct insight into the paradox of reality as our experience. because our
perceptions fool us.
Confessions of a Philosopher: A Personal Journey Through Western Philosophy from Plato to Popper (Modern Library (Paperback)) Paperback – May 18, 1999
by Bryan Magee (Author)
Magee discovered the antinomies as a teenager lying in bed, in a fascinating tale.
I will discuss the other issues later.
From: A. C.
Sent: Sun, Sep 6, 2020 6:59 am
There are some new words I need to get used to as I read WHEE, such as “Antinomy”…
Also, sorry to change the subject for a moment, but what do you think of Advaita? I recall you trying to assess it at the end of Debriefing Gurdjieff which seemed like it was a couple of years ago, so maybe you have thought more about it since then. Advaita Vedanta seem to teach that reality is merely an illusion. I also came across a statement that said Schopenhauer had similar ideas of reality or the external world not existing or something. Such a perspective or teaching makes me wonder what exactly it is supposed to lead to because it seems to me that such a view trivializes anything going on at the phenomenal level, making even something like the evolution of civilization a part of Maya or illusion. It is very difficult to speak about real things with kids today who are into this stuff because they dismiss it all as illusion anyway.
If Schopenhauer was influenced by Kant, did Kant also entertain the idea of reality being an illusion? Or is this just the Hindu influence on Schopenhauer? It seems to me you are a critic of Hinduism, which is refreshing, but I did not see you comment on the reality as illusion issue yet.
From: A. C.
Sent: Thu, Sep 3, 2020 3:59 pm
Subject: Sv: Sv: Hello..or goodbye
Are you saying “Being” is a unity of the material and consciousness? I don’t think I ever quite grasped what “Being” and “Function” were referring to. Not “Will” either.
The idea that civilization also “evolves” in jumps is more new to me and I guess I remain to be convinced by your argument in the book. I have struggled to find a solid interpretation of history that can be used to assess exactly what’s going on at the present and what to expect of the future. Is attempts to change history even possible? Does human will even play a role?
When you say a “form factor” for civilization, are you talking about some kind of pre-established design that human civilization adapts to across history?
An exchange on Bennett, evolution, and WHEE
Re: Sv: Hello..or goodbye
Date: Thu, Sep 3, 2020 10:36 am
Good to hear from you. FYI, I became a critic of Darwinism long ago, it must have been in the eighties, but behind that was the memory of having read Bennett
in the seventies and noted his challenge to Darwinism. So that, and later many other books made me into a critic of Darwin. The ID (intelligent design) movement
came along but it was too fundamentalist for me despite the many good discussions of evolution, and a lot of good links, etc…Having moved in the Gurdjieff and Sufi worlds
I am in two worlds or between two stools with an interest in spirituality and secularism at the same time. Bennett, reflecting Gurdjieff discusses spirituality without rejecting materialism which
enters his work via Samkhya. Many ancient yogis were hidden followers there (and if you read some books on Patanjali you will see sly references to the Samkhya legacy).
Gurdjieff and then Bennett had a brilliant idea: introduce secular culture to spirituality by being more materialist than even secularists. And you see that influence in Bennett who
nonetheless refers to the ‘triad of experience’ as Being, Function, and Will. The materialist enters in the background in a polarity with consciousness as Being. Tricky and clever.
The issue of will is ambiguous therefore and seems to fit into his system ambiguously: Bennett I must suspect was guided by Schopenhauer to a view of will that stands
very well with a non-theistic Samkhya.
Anyway, the issue of evolution in Bennett is fascinating, But is mixed up with his views on space-time and the six-dimensional model of hyparxis and eternity.
But after much puzzlement, I realized I already knew all that, sort of, and had rediscovered the idea in my take on evolution.
Basically, this idea in both cases is related: Think of a man writing a novel: the novel as a genre is a form factor in eternity, the finished novel is an artifact
in time and space, while the ‘evolution’ is the hyparchic interaction of the ‘idea’ and the ‘environment’. That’s a big help but still a long way from the specifics of evolution
and quite heretical to scientists. The above is my take on evolution, without hyparxis, but I suspect there is a connection.
For me evolution, given the example of the eonic effect, is the interplay of a form factor for civilization and the later arises
in a series of transitions in a rapid evolution where the transitions seed new clusters that become a new layer of civilizations.
Bennett is sometimes very confused about history but his scheme of epochs was so wrong he himself seems to have ditched it
to see that the issue of age periods was different. Bennett’s thinking is borderline metaphysics, but his idea of hyparxis remains
as a challenge.
The question of Kant is tricky. I never had a course in Kant and stumbled into him backwards and to this day I have problems with
The Critique of Pure Reason (which really needs a slow reading in a group over six months). A while back I suddenly had a kind of mental breakthrough
on his transcendental deduction, the ultimate obscure prose passage of a strange text, and realized (although Kant scholars would protest), its distant
relationship to the Indic Advaita: the categories of space-time (and many others, but Schopenhauer simplifies that)are fretted in
the mind. But that critique has a lot of material of great interest. No one seems to realize who strange that is, if true: the mind is beyond its own space-time
All that can be put to one side: explore the antinomies, and Kantian idealism there can be derived in a paragraph.
and quite fun and ‘simple’: the critique of metaphysics, the antinomies, and so on. It is highly relevant to consider this thinking via those antinomies.
which are the key to his overall thinking. And there is always the simpler version of Schopenhauer. People often react badly to Kant as person, and I have
a bad feeling he was a sort of schmuck. Anyone who could have written his three critiques gets me to look the other way at his personal character.
So there you have it, I am a sort of rogue Kantian, a highly disreputable philosophic Kantian.
Kant’s classic essay on history is something else and very simple: it asks a question
and I think that the eonic model answers the query/queries in that essay.
Kant fortunately appeared before Darwin and had an immense influence at the birth of biological science, There was a school of
so-called ‘teleomechanists’ who created the first attempt at a science of biology with a teleological aspect. If only biologists had listened.
Instead, the Darwin paradigm took over and it is good for imbeciles or professional cadre scientists who toe the party line.
The eonic effect is not about biological evolution but it nonetheless is relevant because it suggests how a form factor interacts with a
temporal realizations, here ‘transitions’ as seed civilizations that generate new eras in history
The connection of Bennett and to biological evolution is not clear, the approaches are different, but they have a significant resemblance.
Anyway, enough for the moment. I will put this online if you don’t object
You are right, WHEE is not as hard as it looks. Good show…
From: A. C.
Sent: Thu, Sep 3, 2020 7:31 am
Subject: Sv: Hello..or goodbye
I have an interest in your book and Bennett because I find the question of biological evolution to be a thorn in the side of spirituality in that the current Darwinian paradigm is not very compatible with it, and sometimes drags it down. And yet the Darwinian worldview is so strong in modern society that it keeps existing side by side with ideas it is actually contradictory to and yet not many people seem to notice this or are looking for alternate theories to evolution. What interested me with Oscar Ichazo was that he had a different theory of evolution which I believe I have tracked back to J. G. Bennett as a major influence and Bennett actually has stuff down in writing. I also have an interest in the mystery of the origin of religions going back several years when I read ISOM and other books.
After you brought it up I’m also interested in Kant’s questions about history and have decided to jump straight into WHEE without reading Decoding. If it turns out that the text is too difficult for me I’ll check out Decoding or ask questions. So far it is not difficult to read.
I have not read Kant and actually had a bad impression of him based on some quotes I read where he said humans are predisposed to war and that “from such crooked wood as that which man is made of, nothing straight can be fashioned.” It seemed he had a too cynical view of human beings to have much philosophical value. However, I may have been too prejudiced based on that. But I also stayed away from him because I heard he was difficult to read.