July 18, 2006

Spiritual Anarchism or Divine Anarchy

It is commonly held that it wasn't until Pierre-Joseph Proudhon published "What is Property?" in 1840 that the term "anarchist" was adopted as a self-description. It is for this reason that some claim Proudhon as the founder of modern anarchist theory...However, Proudhon did not oppose property in the sense of individual ownership of the produce of his labor. Proudhon's vision of anarchy, which he called mutualism (mutuellisme), involved an exchange economy where individuals and groups could trade the fruits of their labor by using labor-backed money (labor notes)...
Christian anarchism is the belief that there is only one source of authority to which Christians are ultimately answerable, the authority of God as embodied in the teachings of Jesus. Christian anarchists therefore feel that earthly authority such as government, or indeed the established church do not and should not have power over them. Christian anarchists are pacifists and oppose the use of all physical force, both proactive and reactive.
Christian anarchists believe that freedom from earthly authority will only be guided by the grace of God if individuals display compassion for others and turn the other cheek when confronted by violence. Its adherents believe this quest for freedom is justified spiritually and quote the teachings of Jesus, some of whom are critical of the existing establishment and church. They believe all individuals can directly communicate with God and will eventually unify in peace under this one God.
The most famous advocate of Christian anarchism was Leo Tolstoy, author of The Kingdom of God is Within You, who called for a society based on compassion, nonviolent principles and freedom. Some Christian anarchists oppose war and other statist aggression through tax resistance, while others submit to taxation. Tolstoy wrote that if the act of resisting taxes requires physical force to withhold what a government tries to take, then it is important to submit to taxation. Ammon Hennacy, who like Tolstoy also believed in nonresistance, managed to resist taxes without using force. Many Christian anarchists are vegetarian or vegan.
Spiritual Anarchism, or Divine Anarchy, was originally expressed by the political revolutionary, poet and yogi Sri Aurobindo during the First World War in a series of articles published in the Arya, and later made available in two books, The Human Cycle and The Ideal of Human Unity. The exaggerations of both individualistic and communistic streams of anarchist thought are harmonized by going beyond the vital and intellectual foundations of most other schools of anarchism and rooting itself firmly in the spiritual realization and dynamic perfection of the individual and universal godhead in the race.
A spiritual anarchist holds that a perfect form of social organization can only be achieved by governing our individual and collective life by a higher light than the intellectual reason, a deeper law of solidarity and oneness than emotional or mental bonds of association. Although it has deviated significantly from its course, the international township of Auroville was originally intended to be organized as a Divine Anarchy, and may well one day fulfill its purpose.
Other forms of religious Anarchism include the Buddhist Anarchism of Tai-Xu which was strongly influenced by Tolstoy, but also looked to the ancient well-field system for inspiration. Buddhist Anarchism is one of several types of Chinese Anarchism which was influential in mainland China in the 1920's. Anarcha-femi C.Newport 1:17 AM

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