January 17, 2008

Saint Augustine, Meister Eckhart, Schuon: the adventure of consciousness

Follow the Depth from One Cosmos by Gagdad Bob
Only a masochistic leftist is going to read more than one post here. A new-ager or integralist might initially be drawn in, but then be repelled by my traditionalism and moonbat-battering. Traditionalists are put off by my evolutionism, while many Jews (not Lisa, of course) and followers of eastern religions might be put off by my Christian slant. But many Christians are eventually put off by my neo-Vedantin orientation, not to mention my esoteric and Hermetic understanding of Christianity...
Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that an "archetypal Christianity" exists, but that Man's definitions of it perpetually -- and perhaps necessarly -- fall short, for reasons related to Plato's allegory of the cave. However, in my opinion, this is where esoterism, metaphysics, and Hermeticism come to the rescue, as they all deal with the fundamental cosmic principles that simply "cannot not be," and which religion is here to disclose in a way that the average Man can understand.
I align mysoph with Saint Augustine, who wrote that "What we now call the Christian religion existed amongst the ancients, and was from the beginning of the human race, until Christ Himself came in the flesh; from which time the already existing true religion began to be styled Christian." What a profound statement!
I would only add that this true religion never existed "on earth," since it is archetypal. It is the archetypal form in light of which the substance of religion can be seen. But perhaps the most paradoxical thing about it is that it is not superior to the form it takes, any more than the idea of Mother is superior to your dear old Mom, or the baseball rule book is superior to a game.
The "already existing true religion" is the "root religion" of all mankind, bearing in mind that the Tree of Life has its nonlocal roots aloft, its local branches and district offices down below. Because it exists, people could (and can) recognize and understand Christianity when they heard it. Otherwise, Christianity would simply be an absurdity, which it obviously isn't. True, many modern intellectuals regard it as one, but that's only because they aren't intellectuals in the true sense of that word, which means to have an awakened intellect, or nous...
Speaking only for myself -- as something of an inside outsider or outside insider -- I find the most consistently "full" elaboration of this hyperdimensional object to abide within Orthodoxy, with certain vital Catholic contributions added later, for example, Meister Eckhart, whose vision might well be most compatible with my own. (In the near future, I hope to do a series of posts to explore his thought in great detail.)...
For example, if we "reverse imagineer" Christianity, there must be an a priori principle that allows the Creator to take human form, unless the Creator just makes it up as he goes along, like Allah. Likewise, there must be an immanent principle that allows the mind of man to be a witness to Christian truth. In the absence of these principles, then Christ could not have appeared and we couldn't have recognized him anyway; unless you simply insist that this is true, regardless of whether you really understand it. Again, I find such a view unacceptable. This was the Christianity that was foisted upon me as a child, and which caused me to unfortunately reject all Christianity out of hand by the time I was 10 years old.
As Schuon has written, "The very word 'man' implies 'God,' the very word 'relative' implies 'Absolute.'" This is an example of another principle that cannot not be. You could say the same for other irreducible polarities such as time and eternity, spirit and matter, form and substance, freedom and determacy, fate and providence, quantity and quality, individual and group, conscious and unconscious, and others.
I suppose my bottom line -- and this will no doubt smell blasfumy to some -- is that Christianity can be true, but it cannot surpass Truth. While the human mind is "made of truth," it only exists in potential until it is realized. Once you walk the blank into God's arbor and your wood beleaf, the coonundrum ends and the Great Mystery begins. And it is a "mystery in motion," otherwise known as an adventure -- the only one that really Is and has ever been: the adventure of consciousness. Don't listen to the others, most of all me. Just follow the depth, for O is nothing if not deep.

1 comment:

  1. Bottomless pile of crapp.