I noticed the way my memory works is if there is a correlated feeling I recall when thinking of something this is the important activating function For example I got a bit of nostalgia We’re constantly being competed with for our time, our attention. I’ve been sporadically getting my life back to the level of leisure I had before and I installed a few games. Simcity 4, dwarf fortress, (dreamed about unreal tournament 2004 last night), jagged alliance, bought d&d and basic fantasy. Well jagged alliance got in my head last night and rekindled the desire to play it and move it up my shortlist for r&r activities (this gets back to competes for our time of attention) and I forgot what it was I was thinking of but I remembered the feeling Which was my point, the way my brain works. We remember feelings and then associate memories and activities based around them.
The whole and its emanation is unconscious and unwilled.
The whole and its emanation is eternal.
The emanation of the whole is necessary.
The whole is identical to the totality of its emanation.
The whole is undiminished by its emanation.
The emanation is structured hierarchically.
The direction of emanation is reversible, allowing subjective reunion with the whole.
“This unfolding or emanation is characteristically presented as occurring in a three-stage process: First, an initial identity of the product with its source, a sort of potential existence; second, an indefinite procession or unfolding of the product from its source, and third, a contemplative visionary reversion of the product upon its source, in which the product becomes aware of its separate existence and thereby takes on its own distinctive form and definition. The later Neoplatonists such as Proclus, perhaps Porphyry, and the author of the anonymous Parmenides Commentary named these three stages Permanence, Procession and Reversion, and characterized the three successive modes of the product’s existence during this process by the terms Existence, Life and Intellect. Previously, Plotinus had applied a similar terminology, namely Being, Life and Mind, to describe the three principal aspects of the second of his three hypostases, Intellect.”
“The one engenders the two, the two engenders the three and the three engenders all things.” – Tao Teh Ching
The description here of emanationism reminds me of Hegel’s dialectic (thesis, antithesis, synthesis).I’ve been coming to that idea as well. Everything is connected (Leonardo) by 1 degree connections of ideas (triangulation). Each two ideas (opposites) create a mediating connection (either a mediating essence (golden mean), which can be seen as a new direction, i.e. 4th idea). I was reading Edward Eddinger (a Jungian) some numerology stuff about 3 and 4. I’m not a fan (of the numerology, but I was always curious how we came up with quarters for money) but the idea of procession of a trinity came up and how 3 is connected to all ideas. There is some play with 1, 2, and 4 and how 3 and 4 represent their own totalities which can be superimposed on each other, there is also the tetractys (10 dots, i.e. 1:2:3:4)
If ideas are the mind of God (Berkeley and neoplatonism in general). Through the prime mover (unmoved mover’s) contemplation of forms, emanation (causal enfoldment) unfolds the idea. Truly meaning ideas are the centerpiece of reality with intermediary beings unfolding/contemplating further ideas. They interconnect the forms which matter responds to and our minds perceive as thoughts and ideas.
I was reading Edward Eddinger (a jungian) some numerology stuff about 3 and 4. I’m not a fan (of the numerology, but I was always curious how we came up with quarters for money) but the idea of procession of a trinity came up and how 3 is connected to all ideas. There is some play with 1, 2, and 4 and how 3 and 4 represent their own totalities which can be superimposed on each other, there is also the tetractys (10 dots, i.e. 1:2:3:4)I’ve thought about 3’s and 4’s in terms of our planetary arrangement. 1 is sun, 2 is earth, 3 is moon, 4 is anima mundi/world soul, individual soul.
They (att contract work) gave me exposure to the job and skills I wanted but I fucked it up for a multitude of reasons and so they removed that opportunity.
That’s the cold hard truth.
My priveleged entitled self didnt make the cut, so they knocked me down a peg by laying me off which was a blow to my ego. It’s just no one wanted to admit that was the reason, but I knew.
If I was in their shoes I would have done the same thing. I wasnt acting right for the opportunity. I wasnt “ready”. The hardest part is asking myself if I’m ready now or ever would be ready. I like to think I am. Yet I find myself complaining over the complexity of the work I have now and wishing it was more specific to data science. I have it good here where I’m at with plenty of opportunities abound. I just am the new guy right now and I’m anxious about that.
When I made the calls to get back to work at AT&T under contract. I was called back about 2 weeks later and 1 week before I was about to start and told by the CEO of the contracting company that there was a lot of talk about “woman x” and if I was “planning anything”.
Can you imagine…
Yeah. It was crazy. I said no as I wasn’t planning anything (I didnt even know if she was there until he told me we were starting the same day), but the gears got turning.
Who the fuck said something that the CEO of the company that was bringing me on was notified by someone on AT&T about “woman x”?
I was shown a very good opportunity while I was there. Exposure to C suite and devops and even data science.
I acted right up until I didn’t
But first, an important piece of information. I was using marijuana often enough and for long enough that it wasn’t properly leaving my system from day to day.
Shortly after meeting “woman x” I just cracked. By cracked I mean exhumed the biggest fucking ego this side of the world has ever seen.
I had meetings with the C suite on the work I was doing which was new to me (managing software projects). The problem with that type of environment is they just hoist big stuff on you with no warning because they get a feel for the workload you can handle. Of course they had no idea about my marijuana use.
I was catatonic during these meetings. I don’t think I flopped on my face, but I was nervous af and didn’t really contribute much. I knew what I needed to, but I knew what was going on, they were evaluating me. If you don’t do well under contract they usually just dismiss you, but in my case they were actually surprised and for some reason expected me to resign (they missed the fact, despite being 1099, I still had a usable open UI claim). In my opinion it’s because they would have been able to reuse the funds they got for me on another candidate. Instead they got hit with a cut and a hiring freeze for the rest of the year.
The marijuana mixed in with what I believe were concussion symptoms which were rearing there ugly head from an earlier skateboarding accident years ago which led to hypomania. A grand ego to deflect any sense of shame or responsibility for my actions.
Knowing I wasn’t supposed to interact with her, this woman had become a trigger for stress. A person who used to be a fix for my stress at work became a stressor to me. We used to hang out occasionally and smoke marijuana together and just talk about shit and for me that was a high in itself.
AFTER I failed to impress the c suite. I started stoking the fires on my social media about dominatrix’ and what have you to see if I could get a rise out of her and to get me laid off because I didn’t want to be there anymore. The failure of the friendship and failing to impress the c suite got to me, but I wasn’t going to resign because I wouldn’t get unemployment.
I bring all this up because it was very hard for me to accept responsibility for my actions because I didn’t want to admit the state I was in. I had become dependent on marijuana and then metaphorically fell for a siren. It wasn’t her fault. She had no interaction with me, but I let it be. It was what Jung describes as anima possession. I wasn’t contending with her, her lack of response became a placeholder for my paranoid subconscious shadow projections (dominatrix) which led to my downfall. Aka the siren motif.
That’s what I’ve been contending with over the past year. Knowing I was so close to having the things I worked so hard for right in my grasp and I fell on my face because of my own issues. I had to accept the fact that I was flawed and deeply mired in them at the time. The hypomania was a deflection of taking any responsibility.
Either way. Its been hard to accept the fact that I failed in the moment it counted. Mark Manson in the book “the Subtle Art of not giving a fuck” talks about being in love with the product/outcome but not the process (hard work). That was me in my hypomanic state. I wanted the outcome without the effort. I totally flopped because I was in a bad state. I cried about not getting what I thought I deserved and didn’t want to take responsibility for my own failures as to why I didn’t get them so I wouldn’t have to take a hard look at myself.
So this is what I’ve been thinking about lately. Do I really want those things? I have new opportunities in a different space now. Will I do the hard work no matter the sacrifice if the opportunity presents itself? In all fairness I should stop being so hard on myself, I get the impression that Mark Manson’s book would recommend to do the same (don’t presume exceptionalism all the time). I shouldn’t have to think I need to “sacrifice” in order to gain. I blamed the focus on my school as to why I couldn’t perform, which had some truth to it, but it wasn’t all the truth. All the truth is it was school, my father’s death, this woman, and marijuana all wrapped up into one which lead to my failures to perform and I chose school as the only thing I could focus on and accomplish.
The most important take away is understanding my weakness’ so I hopefully don’t repeat them.
I also was able to turn these negative events into a rebirth/refocus/recover move by liquidating, paying my loans, and building in Mexico so I could have a chance at a renewed round 2.
You annotate all the ways you believe you’ve been wronged, vent, and then:
Recognize the part you had in it.
As to the first point. I’ve been there. I had an unconscious philosophy that I would project my own version of reality, my own “house of cards”. But I would find it extremely disturbing if my house wasnt correct. I would try to shore up the walls with more cards (my own interpretations). I would act on those interpretations trying to make my interpretation the reality. Until one day the whole house came down.
“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will rule your life and you will call it fate” – Carl Jung
I sometimes think the icarus myth is a metaphor for falling from grace
And there is a correlate w adam and eve and sexuality
That picture summed it up without getting into detail. The harpies and sirens
He consummated passionately and was judged for it (the fall from grace)
Similar to what happened w adam and eve. The fruit… the fruit of a woman.
Throwing aside the shutters of the protestant work ethic and consuming the ripe fruit of a woman is the fall
But… I think… its within a certain context that isnt mentioned. Maybe adultery or taking something that is not his own. That part isnt spelled out. But those are the common motifs I’ve identified w
Or disregarding having a healthy respect for established rules and indulging ones unreasoned passions in a fit of inflation is the lesson being taught
There is a reason for the protestant work ethic. Harmony.
Indulge the unconscious passions in seclusion
There is a reason it’s in the unconscious
Maybe the lesson is if you knowingly acknowledge sexuality openly you are cast out. Or… having done so and become shameful you are cast out
You either be a player about it or you keep it to yourself
But there is no room for being openly shameful about it
That’s the pretext everyone lives up to. No one openly acknowledges it
I recall a feeling a falling when I held back on revealing my mistress to my former friend.
As if knowing there was no going back. Shutting that door and knowing the emotional scar it was going to leave
Acting in anger
Eddinger says a feeling of falling in dreams is the icarus motif. The fall of ego inflation to alienation.
The fall from grace
I addendumed the fall from grace bit
Knowing I was reveling in my act of vice for revenge purposes was a willful fall from grace (inflated state to a guilty alienated state). The act of capitalizing in the vice is the guilt trip fall leading straight into alienation
I held back but did reveal it. that’s when I felt the falling
Active imagination is all liminal. Hekate, underworld.
I’m watching some tutorials on tech. I can’t help but think these guys are super nerdy and lack people/woman skills
The idea struck me that society is set in such a way that we pair off. There isnt much purpose in being adept at women skills in that scenario
So….this gets back to adam and eve. the knowledge of good and evil, the fruit. That’s what the fruit symbolizes. Not the toil of ones labor that adam is shortly to pursue afterwards (protestant work ethic), but the taboo knowledge of sexuality that eve shared w adam.
I get the impression that that’s what the story is about
Edinger’s talking about finding the mediating symbol between a tension of opposites that leads to the symptom of cognitive dissonance. “The result [nihilism, fundamentalist religious systems, broken images (sic.)] is a pervasive feeling of meaningless and alienation from life.” … “The various pressures of Western society all subtly urge the individual to seek life meaning in externals and objectivity. Whether the goal be the state, the corporate organization, the good material life, or the acquisition of objective scientific knowledge, in each case human meaning is being sought where it does not exist–in externals, in objectivity.” “…I described the symbol [in a paper (sic.)] as though it were something real, almost alive…”… “Modern man’s most urgent need is to discover the reality and value of the inner subjective world of the psyche, to discover the symbolic life.” … “A symbol, on the other hand, is an image or representation which points to something essentially unknown, a mystery.” … “Symbols are spontaneous products of the archetypal psyche. One cannot manufacture a symbol, one can only discover it. Symbols are carriers of psychic energy. This is why it is proper to consider them as something alive. They transmit to the ego, either consciously or unconsciously, life energy which supports, guides, and motivates the individual. The archetypal psyche is constantly creating a steady stream of living symbolic imagery. Ordinarily this stream of images is not consciously perceived except through dreams or through waking fantasy [active imagination (sic.)] when the conscious level of attention has been lowered [abaissement du niveau mental (sic.)]. However, there is reason to believe that even in the full waking state this stream of symbols charged with effective energy continues to flow beyond the notice of the ego. Symbols seep into the ego, causing it to identify with them and act them out unconsciously [“until we make the unconscious conscious, it will control our lives and we will call it fate” – Jung (sic.)]; or they spill out into the external environment via projection, causing the individual to become fascinated and involved with objects and activities.” “2. The Concretistic and Reductive Fallacies The relation between the ego and the symbol is a very important factor. In general there are three possible patterns of relation between ego and symbol or, which means the same thing, between ego and archetypal psyche: 1. The ego may be identified with the symbol [ego inflation (sic.), archetypal possession]. In this case the symbolic image will be lived out concretely. Ego and archetypal psyche will be one. 2. The ego may be alienated from the symbol. Although symbolic life cannot be destroyed, in this case it will function in a degraded fashion outside consciousness. The symbol will be reduced to a sign. Its mysterious urgencies will be understood only in terms of elementary, abstract factors. 3. The third possibility is the one desired. In this instance the ego, while clearly separated from the archetypal psyche, is open and receptive to the effects of symbolic imagery. A kind of conscious dialogue between the ego and emerging symbols becomes possible. The symbol is then able to perform its proper function as release and transformer of psychic energy [gnosis, theurgy (sic.)] With full participation of conscious understanding.” … “For those of this [reductive fallacy (sic.)] persuasion, religious symbolism is no more than evidence of ignorance and primitive superstition. … Here, the abstract. objective attitude appropriate for an understanding of outer reality [proper goal for meaning is to merge outer and inner worlds (sic.)] is applied to the unconscious psyche in an attempt to manipulate it [keep outer and inner separate, reduce inner to outer (sic.)]. This attitude does violence to the autonomous reality of the psyche.” … “Jung writes: …The psyche is an autonomous factor, and religious (or symbolic) statements are psychic confessions which in the last resort are based on unconscious … processes. These processes are not accessible to physical perception but demonstrate their existence through the confessions of the psyche … Whenever we speak of religious (or symbolic) contents we move in a world of images that point to something ineffable. We do not know how clear or unclear these images, metaphors, and concepts are in respect of their transcendental object … (However) there is not doubt that there is something behind these images that transcends consciousness and operates in such a way that the statements do not vary limitless and chaotically, but clearly all relate to a few basic principles or archetypes. These, like the psyche itself, or like matter, are unknowable as such.” “This state [concretistic fallacy, i.e. fundamentalists (sic.)] is characteristic of an early stage of ego development seen, for instance, in primitives and children. The reductive fallacy stems from a state of alienation between the ego and the symbolism of the unconscious. It seems to be a later stage of development [nihilism (sic.)], perhaps a necessary reaction against the previous state of identify between ego and unconscious. At this point ego development may require a depreciation of the unconscious and of the power of its symbolic images. However, this leaves dissociation between ego and unconscious [cognitive dissonance, compartmentalization (sic.)] which sooner or later must be bridged if one is to become whole.” “The symbolic goal of Jungian psychotherapy is to make the symbolic process conscious. Ti become conscious of symbols we first need to know how a symbol behaves when it is unconscious. All the inhuman practices of savage rites and rituals as well as neurotic symptoms and perversions [porphyry and Plotinus intervention on his behalf with his “sacred marriage” demonstration, erotic mania (sic.)], can be understood if we realize how a symbol functions unconsciously. The basic proposition is this: An unconscious symbol is lived but not perceived. The dynamism of the unconscious symbol is experienced only as a wish or an urgency toward some external action. The image behind the urgency is not seen. No purely psychological meaning is discerned behind the motivating force of the symbolic image which has it’s own grip [possession (sic.)]. The ego, identified with the symbolic image [ego inflation (sic.)], becomes its victim [danger of concretistic or reductive Fallacies (sic.)], condemned to live out concretely the meaning of the symbol [as expressed in myth, motifs, idioms, metaphors, allegories, stereotypes (sic.)] rather than to understand it consciously. To the degree that the ego is identified with the archetypal psyche, the dynamism of the symbol will be seen and experienced only as an urge to lust or power.” … “Only Jung and his school, so far, have been able to recognize the symbols and therefore the archetypal psyche of which it is a manifestation, as it functions when the ego is not identified with it. [For example: (sic.)] In Freudian psychology, for instance, where Jung sees the transpersonal archetypal psyche, Freud sees the Id. The Id is a caricature of the human soul. The archetypal psyche and its symbols are seen only by the way they manifest themselves when the ego is identified with them. The Id is the unconscious seen only as instinct [reductive fallacy, a sign (sic.)] with no consideration of the images that lie behind the instincts. To the extent that images are dealt with at all, they are reductively interpreted back to the instinct. The symbolic image per se is granted no substantially reality.” … “A paralyzing, guilt-laden symptom can be replaced by a meaningful, life-enriching symbol which is experienced consciously rather than lived out on an unconscious, compulsive, symptomatic way.”…”Intense moods and emotional states will also yield up their meaning if the relevant symbolic image can be found.”…”To the extent that one is unaware of the symbolic dimension of existence, one experiences the vicissitudes of life as symptoms. Symptoms are disturbing images of mind which we are unable to control [impulses (sic.)] and which are essentially meaningless–that is, contain no value or significance [the many mentally non associated effects of an archetypal essence [(sic.)]. Symptoms, in fact, are degraded symbols, degraded by the reductive fallacy of the ego. Symptoms are intolerable (tension of opposites (sic.)] precisely because they are meaningless. Almost any difficulty can be borne if we discern its meaning.” … “3. The Symbolic LifeThe symbolic life in some form is a prerequisite for psychic health. Without it the ego is alienated from its suprapersonal source and falls victim to a kind of cosmic anxiety.” …”… the ego-Self axis and the symbolic life are encountered through the inferior function, the weakest portion of the personality [abaissement du niveau mental (sic.)]. Only by awareness and acceptance of our weakness do we become conscious of something beyond the ego which supports us [transcendent function (sic.)].” – Edward Edinger Ego and Archetype
“I was going through a period of intense hypomania while using medical marijuana and quite possibly experiencing the effects of tbi of the left frontal lobe (knocked myself out while skateboarding) which was exacerbated from the marijuana (mood, analytical thinking, emotion regulation, impulse regulation) and I read Bruce MacLennan’s work (Individual Soul and World Soul) that right brain is more in tune w associative pattern recognitions (poetic license, analyze myths for common motifs) and I’m reading jung’s Archetypes (bellinger series) and turns out I was experiencing what Maclennan and Jung term “active imagination” as well as Katabasis (descent to the underworld) and now understand why Hekate is associated with the underworld (liminal means the uncontrolled thoughts that come to mind, often archetypal heros of the past, hence underworld connection). I made an art piece that expressed a coniunctio as well as the goddesses Hekate, Isis, and Tiamat along with Hypatia.
Edward Edinger says “Self axis and the symbolic life are encountered through the inferior function, the weakest portion of the personality. Only by awareness and acceptance of our weakness do we become conscious of something beyond he ego which supports it.”
The inferior function is ego alienation (follows ego inflation, the subsequent fall stemming from outward rejection by one’s peers, the Icarus effect). Which results in a “abaissement du niveau mental”, aka the inferior function is accessed.
Anyways. Thought it would be worth mentioning. I found it very spiritual and have contemplated on its meaning since. I believe in the gods from these periods of active imagination as I believe they were telling me something, guiding me, showing me a path from the unconscious on where hopes for my future lied.”
The timing bit for otherwise unconnected events seems to be orchestrated in a meaningful way
I happened to meet her twice before the vp exhuming I was ready merely to fall apart in a manic mess followed by an inflated ego and to save it from crashing goddess tangent writes me an email moments before my layoff
All that shit felt like cosmic timing
Because the cosmos knew it had Mexico lined up for me
I met vera bambi at LAX on my way to see my dying dad in the hospital
My failed jewish friendship led me to a Muslim virgin when I beseeched metatron
All these things were what [wolfgang] pauli gets at about signs and you said was magical idealism
Maclennan talks about signs and symbols
Maclennan talks about signs and symbols
Symbols are archetypal subjective
Signs are objective words
Signs are labels
Both are used.in theurgy, signs sit under symbols. I’ve read a book on philosophy about computer cognition and how that all fits in (and why I think neoplatonism is pre computer science, aka nous as a database). Anyways. All these were signs in my life. And pauli said events and ideas. I said events, people (being), places, ideas, and add emotion (eros)
o some of my theurgical symbols involved active imagination (hekate, goddess tangent, Hypatia) and symbolons (metatron, seed of life. And I was laid off on hypatias day of death. I was in tj on voltaires bday renewing my fmm and I beseeched him the day I used the metatron
Hell the day I revealed the virgin mistress was on good friday/passover and i had no clue!
Which is why I made my business card w the star of David, crescent moon, and cross
I think its code too meant to be consumed by cosmic agents (minds)
When hypatias death day rolled around [the day of my layoff]. That was the one time I knew what was going on. I knew what that day meant and I wasnt scared
I had trust[pistis], a chaldean virtue
I feel the gods revealed themselves to me
When I found out hekate was anima mundi…
I did a mental doubletake
I’ve always cherished the idea of anima mundi
Its [anima mundi] akin to this Jewish guys work
Abiotic genesis, jeremy england
The suns Ray’s excite enough energy and particles self organize
Human insecurity can find much solace in the concept of the demon. The concept of the good demon assists human beings, of course, in obvious ways. It may help them to hope, and supply them, quite literally, with ‘high spirits’ in the confidence of friendly supernatural assistance. If, moreover, good demons, not humans, are viewed as the prime opponents of demonic wickedness, then the weight of a person’s own responsibility is, or may be, significantly reduced, and the angelic powers will act for him or her instead. Bad demons may also, though such a statement may seem at first surprising, supply a similar solace. One source of solace will lie in the invitation the wicked demon offers to ‘demonise’, and so to outlaw all which makes humans feel most inadequate or outraged-a tendency it may seem we seek primarily to examine, and have begun to see in action. This first source of solace is perhaps the most obvious one. These bad demons may also, however, lift burdens of guilt and pain from human shoulders by bearing the responsibility for wrong. The evil demons might, in this way, be ultimately blamed for perceived wickedness, in place of a hapless human. If demons are held in truth to be more powerful than human begins, and to control their destinies; if they, not humans, are believed to be the driving forces in human decision-making, (to be, in short, man’s ‘fate’), then the evil ‘daimones’ might be made ultimately 4responsible for a great deal of that currently sen as wicked in human bevahiour, and penalised in man’s place. In this way, belief in the evil demons might obviate a verdict capable of bringing heavy penalties down upon human beings, especially at the hands of a brutal state government; and the exorcising of a demon (provided it is done well and without offence) may seem to some to be a far better way of countering human evil than the possibly harsher means taken by the secular powers. This second view of ‘demonisation’, the use of demons, that is, as an expedient to release man from both stress and punishment, is less familiar than the first. It is a use, however, which becomes ever more relevant as we approach the world of Late Antiquity. The use of the evil demons as protectors for humans from something far worse than exorcism-from pan, and death, and the loss of the soul-may have played a larger part in the ‘demonisation’ of magic, and in exciting debate about it in the Late Antique Christian Church, than we have hitherto suspected. These psychological and legal dimensions to the concept of the demon and, above all, that Christian attitude to fear which was mentioned at the beginning of the discussion, need constantly to be thought about as we progress.
Belief in the demons, then, allowed the translation of human problems onto a cosmic plane, and provided ‘escapism’ of many different sorts. Psychological forces of this order may also, as we have begun to see, readily be translated into moral terms, and be used to reinforce moral dictates. There are, however, prices to be paid for such release, whenever they occur in the history of human society. The capacity to blame another might sweep away all readiness to accept responsibility for oneself, and the perceived potent presence of ‘daimones’, of whatever kind, imposes a constant need for their invocation and propitiation, and for affording them their just deserts; a circumstance requiring, perhaps, that attendance upon the higher power take too great a precedence over other human activities. Psychological forces of this order might be abused by unscrupulous, or deluded, manipulators; by dominant personalities, for instance, who seek unacceptable means of control ( a situation still very much with us if we read the twentieth-century press). On occasion, the idea of the demonic may be used to raise the trivial to a status it should not have, and debase the truly important in human affairs. Belief in good and evil demons can provide man with ready excuses for a debilitating sense of his own misbehaviour, a rehabilitating means of help and safeguard, and an efficiently directed morality, it is true; but it can also reduce man’s sense of stature within the universe, and rob him of the enjoyment of freedoms and capacities truly his own. Elevation and escapism contain both worthy and unworthy elements; ‘demonisation’ can be a effective, but also a dangerous, source of control.
Response: So much Jung here. Demonology as a psychological function. A type of escapism. Correlate ideas: fear of unconscious, anima (angel)/shadow (demon), eros as a demon, mob mentality and capacity to see past a person to a demon and blame a divine entity.
When we consider the spirit in its archetypal form as it appears to us in fairytales and dreams, it presents a picture that differs strangely from the conscious idea of spirit. which is split up into so many meanings. Spirit was originally a spirit in human or animal form, a daimonion that came upon man from without. But our material already shows traces of an expansion of consciousness which has gradually begun to occupy that originally unconscious territory and to transform those daimonia, at least partially into voluntary acts. Man conquers not only nature, but spirit also, without realizing what he is doing. To the man of enlightened intellect it seems like the correction of a fallacy when he recognizes that what he took to be spirits is simply the human spirit and ultimately his own spirit. All the superhuman things, whether good or bad, that former ages predicated of the daimonia, are reduced to “reasonable” proportions as through they were pure exaggeration, and everything seems to be in the best possible order. But were the unanimous convictions of the past really and truly only exaggerations? If they were not, then the integration of the spirit means nothing less than its demonization, since the superhuman spiritual agencies that were formerly tied up in nature are introjected into human nature, thus endowing it with a power which extends the bounds of the personality ad infinitum, in the most perilous way. I put it to the enlightened rationalist has his rational reduction led to the beneficial control of matter and spirit? He will point proudly to the advances in physics and medicine, to the freeing of the mind from medieval stupidity and-as a well-meaning Christian-to our deliverance from the fear of demons. But we continue to ask: what have all our other cultural eyes: man has been delivered from no fear, a hideous night-mare lies upon the world. So far reason has failed lamentably, and the very thing that everybody wanted to avoid rolls on in ghastly progression. Man has achieved a wealth of useful gadgets, but, to offset that, he has torn open the abyss, and what will become of him now-where can he make a halt? After the last World War we hoped for reason: we go on hoping. But already we are fascinated by the possibilities of atomic fission and promise ourselves a Golden Age-the surest guarantee that the abomination of desolation will grow to limitless dimensions. And who or what is it that causes all this? It is none other than that harmless (!), ingenious, inventive, and sweetly reasonable human spirit who unfortunately is abysmally unconscious of the demonism that still clings to him. Worse, this spirit does everything to avoid looking himself in the face, and we all help him like mad. Only, heaven preserve us from psychology-that depravity might lead to self-knowledge! Rather let us have wars, for which somebody else is always to blame, nobody seeing that all the world is driven to do just what the world flees from in terror.
It seems to me, frankly, that former ages did not exaggerate, that the spirit has not sloughed off its demonisms, and that mankind, because of its scientific and technological development, has in increasing measure delivered itself over to the danger of possession. True, the archetype o the spirit is capable of working for good as well as for evil, but it depends upon mans free–.e., conscious–decision whether the good also will be perverted into something satanic. Man’s worst sin is unconsciousness, but it is indulged in with the greatest piety even by those who should serve mankind as teachers and examples. When shall we stop taking man for granted in his barbarous manner and in all seriousness seek ways and means to exorcise him, to rescue him from possession and unconsciousness, and make this the most vital task of civilization? Can we not understand that all the outward tinkerings and improvements do not touch man’s inner nature, and that everything ultimately depends upon whether the man who wields the science and the technics is capable of responsibility or not? Christianity has show us the way, but, a the facts beat witness, it has not penetrated deeply enough below the surface. What depths of despair are still needed to open the eyes of the world’s responsible leaders, so that at least they can refrain from leading themselves into temptation?
Hypatia is still my numero uno though (math, politician)
Next is Voltaire (early retirement, universal tolerance, free thinker, enlightenment, french)
Then Porphyry (theological outlook despite melancholy, vegetarian, universal tolerance, historical criticism)
Then Hierocles (synthesis of stoic, plotinian, stood up to state)
Then Jung (hooks into everything including gnosticism bridging a gap between plotinus and today, empiricism)
Then Watts (Buddhism, aware of Jung and western thought)
Then Aristotle (empiricism, survey, Alexander’s teacher, logic)
Then Plato (idealism, survey of philosophy, Aristotles teacher, pupil of Socrates, very important in the whole setup, carrier of eternal soul idea from pythagoras and by extension Jainism, Mathematician)
Then it’s up for grabs after that
They are kind of like saints to me. Socrates isnt even one of my favorites, probably why I forgot him. But I like to think he and I talk a lot and are not afraid to speak our minds.
21 distinct people here
Alcibiades is my favorite tragic (game of thrones esque) anti hero. Pericles my favorite hero. Parminedes doesnt get a mention unfortunately but without him the theory of unity wouldnt have developed. Democritus is certainly influential as well (and by extension the Stoics). Aside from Parminedes poem, there isnt much to go off of. Anaxagoras was my original favorite, then Voltaire, and now its Hypatia due to round about events reintroducing me to her as the head of the Alexandrian academy. Some might say, how can you know someone who has no writings? “Bios” as well as a lot of academic historical works. I’d pick a theme and start buying used books on amazon and use encyclopedias and whitepapers to augment my reading.
I can actually detail the entire neoplatonic line. Inbetween damascius as the last head of Athens and Justinians closure in 529. The alexandrian academy operated for 100 years more, then you have the Imperial Academy in Byzantinium (Stephanus, Theodora), but I skip that & follow the crypto Dionysius corpus then Boethius, Aquinas, then Plethon & Marcilio Ficino bridging the east west gap by reintroducing Byzantium works to the west since the inaccess of platonic works due the Arab invasion in… Alexandria. Which results in the Renaissance right around the time Byzantium falls… to ironically Muslims (nothing against them, just an east west split once more). (Voltaire) and the likes of Thomas Taylor translating similar to Ficino & then Jung delving in as well as Watts delving into Jung.
You have modern experts like [late] Jaegar, [late] Guthrie, Wallis, Dillon, Schibli, Shaw, (2nd Watts), Markus, Kingsley, Gerson, Dodds, & Butler.
But I find the middle platonic (Appuleius) period leading up to Alexandria (culminating in hellenized jewish philosophers such as Philo & Numenius & resulting in the neoplatonic tradition thru Ammonius & his students Origen and Plotinus) more fascinating than the Christian (stephanus)/muslim (avicenna) post alexandria neoplatonic period.
George RR Martin said if you liked his books. History had great stuff. I took him up on it after his 4th Song of Ice and Fire book and have been reading historical doxographies of philosophical thought augmenting with context of any academic material (encyclopedias, wars, forms of government, religions).
I forgot to mention, Thomas McEvilley and his ingenious work “Shape of Ancient Thought” which helped bridge the gap between indian and Greek thought through historically impermeable middle man Persia.
My favorite history book on the Greeks is Terry Buckley’s “Aspects of Greek History 750-323BC: A Source-Based Approach” Robert Wilkens “Christians as the Roman’s saw them” introduced me to Porphyry
My favorite professor on the Greeks is Yale’s Donald Kagan and on philosophy is Yale’s Tamar Gendler
I didnt even mention Spinoza and Bruno. Spinoza (and Voltaire) I’m aware of through Durant and Spinoza (also heard via Kaku) was heavily influenced by Aristotle and neoplatonic thought. Same w Bruno
The names of the people in the pic: sapphos, diotima, aspasia, hypatia, sosipatra, theodora. Pythagoras, socrates, plato, aristotle, ammonius, plotinus, porphyry. Hypatia, hierocles, plutarch, iamblichus, proclus, damascius, voltaire, jung, watts. Hypatia is shown twice due her role as a head of an academy in the neoplatonic tradition. All were teachers or leaders in some fashion
1. The idea that it is a dire necessity for adults to be
loved by significant others for almost everything they do…
instead of their concentrating on their own self-respect, on winning approval
for practical purposes, and on loving rather than on being loved.
2. The idea that certain acts are awful or wicked, and that
people who perform such acts should be severely damned…
instead of the idea that certain acts are self-defeating or antisocial, and
that people who perform such acts are behaving stupidly, ignorantly, or
neurotically, and would be better helped to change. People’s poor
behaviors do not make them rotten individuals.
3. The idea that it is horrible when things are not the way
we like them to be…
instead of the idea that it is too bad, that we had better try to change or
control bad conditions so that they become more satisfactory, and, if that is
not possible, we had better temporarily accept and gracefully lump their
4. The idea that human misery is invariably externally
caused and is forced on us by outside people and events…
instead of the idea that neurosis is largely caused by the view that we take
of unfortunate conditions.
5. The idea that if something is or may be dangerous or
fearsome we should be terribly upset and endlessly obsess about it…
instead of the idea that one had better frankly face it and render it
non-dangerous, and, when that is not possible, accept the inevitable.
6. The idea that it is easier to avoid than to face life
difficulties and self-responsibilities…
instead of the idea that the so-called easy way is usually much harder in the
7. The idea that we absolutely need something other or
stronger or greater than ourself on which to rely…
instead of the idea that it is better to take the risks of thinking and
acting less dependently.
8. The idea that we should be thoroughly competent,
intelligent, and achieving in all possible respects…
instead of the idea that we would prefer to do well rather than always need
to do well, and accept ourself as a quite imperfect creature, who has general
human limitations and specific fallibilities.
9. The idea that because something once strongly affected
our life, it should indefinitely affect it…
instead of the idea that we can learn from our past experiences but not be
overly-attached to or prejudiced by them.
10. The idea that we must have certain and perfect control
instead of the idea that the world is full of improbability and chance and
that we can still enjoy life despite this.
11. The idea that human happiness can be achieved by inertia
instead of the idea that we tend to be happiest when we are vitally absorbed
in creative pursuits, or when we are devoting ourselves to people or projects
12. The idea that we have virtually no control over our
emotions and that we cannot help feeling disturbed about things…
instead of the idea that we have real control over our destructive emotions –
if we choose to work at changing the “musturbatory” hypotheses which we often
employ to create them.