Plato’s Socrates: The Parable of the Ship

  Famously, Socrates has told Glaucon and Adeimantus, in Book V of Plato’s Republic (488a-489a), that there would be no rest from ills in the cities unless philosophers rule as kings. Not knowing what philosophy is, or what philosophers are, someone, a Harvard man, has also famously said he would rather be governed by any of the first 20 names selected from the Boston phone book! The point is well taken, especially if these could manage to deliberate together for the common good, especially since we do not happen to have a wise man or woman, nor how to find a genuine philosopher. But through books Five, six and seven, Socrates undertakes to explain what a philosopher is, and in doing so, also has occasion to explain the good, or rather the child of the good, as distinct from, but necessary in order to know, the just.

   Socrates explains who the real philosophers are through three images, called the ship, the line and the cave. This, we say, is the peak of all human writing, though certain things written by the apostle John, and perhaps Ezekiel, the Sermon on the Mount, and Genesis, written by perhaps by the hand of Noah, Enoch, Abraham and Moses, are also contenders for the highest writing we have.

   As translated by Allan Bloom, Socrates explains:

…So hard is the condition suffered by the most decent men with respect to the cities that there is no single other condition  like it, but I must make my image and apology on their behalf by bringing it together from many sources- as the painters  paint goatstags and such things by making mixtures. Conceive something of this kind happening on either one many ships or one.  Though the shipowner surpasses everyone on board in height and strength…

The shipowner is the people, or the whole polity.

…he is rather deaf and likewise somewhat shortsighted, and his knowledge of seamanship is pretty much on the same level…

That is true of both the many poor and the few rich, in every city and so in every nation…

…The sailors are quarreling with one another about the piloting, each supposing he ought to pilot, although he has never learned the art and cannot produce produce his teacher or prove there was a time when he was learning it…

These are the politicians, almost without exception, and the political parties, promoting partisan opinions, most of whom who have never read their own Constitution of the writings of their founders, or this work of Plato on justice, though some have even owned universities. Some have used universities to defraud the elderly, while teaching such topics as real estate scams for profit, calling this virtue and knowledge, provided it is accompanied by good fortune, or luck. And they honor the gambler if he wins or cheats and gets away with cheating, not to mention other ways of making money regardless or law or ethics. And this they call “education.” They hold to the strangest standards of merit regarding rule, such as wealth, good lineage of ancestry, management ability, concern for the many and ability to bring gifts and pleasure, all of which are at best partial.

…Besides this, they claim it isn’t even teachable, and are ready to cut to death the man who says it is teachable…

This is not an exaggeration. Nothing is more common or more comforting than the teaching such as relativism, that there is no knowledge regarding justice or what is right to do, let alone what is right for man or the best way of life and the hierarchy of ends according to nature that is the basis of the right priorities. Socrates was put to death in a case of judicial murder, as told in another of those greatest books, Plato’s Apology. He describes this elsewhere as being like the trial of a doctor by a pastry chef before a jury of children.

…And they are always crowded around the shipowner himself, begging and doing everything so that he’ll turn the rudder over to them. And sometimes, if they fail at persuasion and other men succeed at it, they either kill the others or throw them out of the ship. Enchaining the noble shipowner mandrake, drink, or something else,…

We have just suffered a very strange Oxy or opioid epidemic, which quite suspiciously has prepared our nation for the subversion of our constitution, and could not have been better devised to that end if it were a conspiracy, as it not only has made us unable to think so as to paralyze our ability to respond, it has fueled the heroin trade and organized crime with the money needed to further the enterprise of taking power.

…they rule the ship,, using what’s in it; drinking and feasting, they sail as such men would be thought likely to sail. Besides this, they praise and call “skilled sailor,” “pilot” and “knower of the ship’s business” the man who is clever at figuring out how they will get rule…

At a certain point about twenty years ago, political science became the study of elections and how to win elections, a sophistry or rhetoric like the subjection of the study of law to forensics, or how to win arguments, even making the weaker argument appear stronger, as promoted by our “adversarial” court system. This study of the campaign adviser took over politics, in part because, it was thought, one would then be employable, assuming this, an illiberal goal, was the end of all education. Those who think this way are indeed like materialists in discussions of metaphysics, as though they do not see the mystery of form at all, or those in politics who can only deliberate ad hominem, arguing that such a person or motive is not worthy of being not be heard. These do not have access to the starting of genuine education or deliberation, and so the resort is power.

…either by persuading or by forcing the shipowner, while the man who is not of this sort they blame as useless. They do not that for the true pilot, it is necessary to pay careful attention to year, seasons, heaven, stars, winds, and everything that’s proper to the art, if he’s really going to be skilled at ruling a ship. And they don’t suppose it’s possible to acquire the art and practice of how one can get hold of the helm whether the others wish it or not, and at the same time to acquire the pilot’s skill…

Knowledge and rule tend in opposite directions, which is part of the reason that wise rule, or the best regime, is for almost all practical purposes impossible. And as Prospero himself learns, rule requires a great deal of experience, as we have statesmen starting out in the states, while working at this, while necessarily neglecting what would be the necessary studies.

So with such things happening on the ships, don’t you believe that the true pilot will really be called a  stargazer, a prater and useless to them by those who sail on ships run like this…

 

 

 

Shakespeare’s The Tempest opens with a ship in a storm, and there one sees the legitimate king subjected by the pilot and boatswain in a futile attempt to avoid disaster.

Advertisements

Lyric Commentary: Jeff Lynne, ELO: Can’t Get It Out of My Head

1975   ELO Face The Music

Midnight, on the water

I saw the ocean’s daughter

Walking on a wave’s chicane

Staring as she called my name

 

And I can’t get it out of my head

No I can’t get it out of my head

Now my old world is gone for dead

Cause I can’t get it out of my head

 

Break down / On the shoreline

Can’t move. It’s an ebb tide.

Morning, don’t get here tonight

Searching for her silver light

 

And I can’t get it out of my head…

 Bank Job. In the city.

Robin Hood and William Tell, and Ivanhoe and Lancelot

They don’t envy me.

 

Sitting till the sun goes down

In dreams the world keeps going round and round

And I can’t get it out of my head…

(Lyrics from Songmeanings.com)

  The word is both “chicane” and “she came.” A wave’s chicane would be that white part, or the crest of a wave, good for sailing away upon, referring to a couple other Lynne songs.

   A contributor identified as Junkkillit on Songmeanings.com has by far the best interpretive commentary. He begins: “Midnight on the water describes the setting, place and mood where love can be inflicted.” Then he writes:

…The ocean’s daughter is Venus, the goddess of love who was born from the waves. She is not the object of his infatuation but she is the cause of love occurring between people, similar to Cupid’s role in causing people to fall in love. Chicane in this context means trickery, and the goddess of love, walking on the waves, uses her powers and one is tricked and falls into this helpless condition…In the next line, the goddess called his name and he fell choicelessly in love…”It” is not a particular girl, but love’s situation, which is desperate. This song is about love’s situation…Searching for her silver light- a way to appease the goddess so she may release him from his love trap.

     That is one of the best lyric interpretations I have ever seen- hats off! In Hesiod, Aphrodite, the “girl on the half-shell,” is not exactly a daughter of Ocean, as are Wonder (Thaumus), Iris, Electra, and the “beautifully singing Hesperides.” She is rather born later, of the foam that arose from the genitals of Ouranos, or sky, thrown into the sea by Kronos at the start of the reign of the Titans (175; 190) That is, according the Hesiod, anyway, who thinks “At first chaos came to be…” We, rather, think She could as easily be described as descending from above, but that neither are quit right, and a new idea is needed.  The furies arose similarly from drops of blood. But she arises from the water of ocean, and is attended by Eros and desire, though not synonymous with these. Walking on the water is what Jesus did, and she, as Aphros or foam, floats. Both among mortals and immortals, she was allotted from the beginning “flirtatious conversations of maidens, smiles and deceits, sweet delight and passion of love and gentle enticements” (205-206). So it is not clear that she is not an “epi-phenomenon,” as materialistic psychology holds “consciousness” to be, at least until their names are called by love, as Leonard Cohen knows, and their old world too is gone for dead.”

 When he shouts about Robin Hood, etc, he means that those heroes do not envy this poet’s challenge, more difficult than what they faced. Apparently, on the cover of the album is a picture of the ruby slippers, and there is reference to the time the witch tried to seize them, and got zapped. Songfacts:

This is one of several fan favorites from the Eldorado, considered by many to be Jeff Lynne’s best album. The album cover shows what appears to be the scene from the movie The Wizard Of Oz, as the Wicked Witch tries to snatch Dorothy’s Ruby Red Slippers.”

@junkkillit Very nice, thanx. At first, I had they don’t envy him because he is a lesser hero, with the bank job, but now I see too it is that his task is more difficult. The experience too may be about becoming a poet through love, hence the concept album planned, eh? Those things happen from contact with It/She, called Anima or soul by Carl Jung, our man regarding these matters.

   Jung needed a new word because this is a new idea, not as we had, “Aphrodite” as a heavenly celibate love or an earthly bodily Venus, the mother of cupid or cupidity. Shakespeare explores this in Romeo and Juliet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

   “Breakdown on the shoreline”: Contact with anima or “soul'” as the case of love can be devastating: “Can’t move. It’s an ebb tide.” Paralysis. Water flowing out is the unconscious, which floods the conscious mind in both madness and poetry, but in different ways. But I’ll bet the breakdown on the shoreline describes an actual experience where he sat all night at the shoreline, symbolic of the line between unconscious and conscious, and as Jung teaches too, Anima is a mediator. “Morning don’t get here tonight/ Searching for her silver light.” Silver tips the trees in the orchard of Capulet where Romeo sees Juliet, and recurs throughout the play. Then indeed, his old world was gone, and he became not a bankboy, but a poet, and a rock star or hero.

   From The website Songfacts: Lynne recalled in an edition of VH1’s Storytellers, that he found inspiration for the song in the unfulfilled reveries of an everyday bloke. “It’s about a guy in a dream who sees this vision of loveliness and wakes up and finds that he’s actually a clerk working in a bank,” he said. “And he hasn’t got any chance of getting her or doing all these wonderful things that he thought he was going to do.” It is also said on Songmeanings that he said in this interview there is more to it that he does not say.

   So, why is it Ivanhoe and William Tell and Robin Hood and Lancelot? Brits and Scotts and Englishmen is one thing, but why not King Arthur? I’ll have to work on my Brit lit, to catch up with Lynne when he was a youngster.

When These Powers Are Abused, Absolutely Nothing is Done: Insurance Fraud in the “Mental Health” System?

It is of course extremely important that these systems are not abused or used against individuals for partisan political purposes, so that the systems function correctly when there is a genuine crisis.

Amendment IV to the U.S Constitution (FUNDAMENTAL LAW)

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the person or things to be seized.

Nothing is done when these powers are abused.

   One reason that I have let my health insurance lapse is that I do not think “They” would be as likely to do what they did to me last year if they had to eat the bill. As it is, I am charged 11$, and the taxpayer 5,308$ for what was done to me illegally, for absolutely no reason, in a single day. I have reported this to the Insurance company Aetna, which was chosen for me in place of Blue Cross, without my consent. Over one year, and about 7 or 8 appointments, two different doctor places did me absolutely no good for a facial palsy, likely caused by lyme disease from a tick, and a digestive malady. Either of these might be fatal. They did, however, put me on Avostatin, though my numbers were just below the level, and I had told them if it was close, I did not want it, and then “Lipitor,” prescribed but ignored. The Avostatin began to dissolve my memory, as memory apparently uses proteins. Part of the accusation against me was that I neglected my health care, and so am a danger to myself. Since the accusation, I no longer have the means to make and keep any appointment, since I have lost my ability to repair my 17 year old ranger, or pay for insurance. My elderly mother thus has no vehicle for emergencies.

But here is what they did to me in a single day for Five thousand plus taxpayer dollars:

On 3/23/17

HC-Lab metabolic Panel Comprehensive             157$

HC-Lab -Thyroid Stim Ho (TSH)                               117

HC-Lab-Cbc W/Plts & Diff                                             75

HC- Ekg                                                                            147

HC-Pulse Ox Multidetermination                              160

HC-er Visit Level 3                                                         84

Nicotine…gum                                                                      0.27

HC-Observation Per minute Psy Ed                         1,322.02

I believe they have neglected to mention illegally drugging me with Atavan,” 2 pills I first threw over my shoulder, having told them that I become extremely ill from small amounts of alcohol for an unknown reason. I was threatened with forced injection, so I retrieved the pills from the floor and ate them, becoming quite ill and delirious. This was done because I kept bothering the woman at the counter by saying they had no right to hold me, and demanding a lawyer. Contrary to law, I had not yet been shown the perjurous accusation (see “Conversations With Relatives”), and had no idea what was going on, except that that they had tried to take me away once before, and my sister had threatened to do something by compulsion if I did not “talk” to her friend Jake,” some kind of shrink who had “helped” her with her son, my nephew.

3/24/17

HC-Lab Dug screen Preliminary Urine Pan                          186$

HC–Lab-Urinalysis Macroscopic                                                27

I had sworn I would “piss in a cup for no man living,” when seeking work, and had never been subjected to such slavery in my life. Again, I submitted under obvious compulsion. It is not right to hurt ignorant people who have no free employment with which to earn a living, and they were clearly going to win in any case, even if they had to kill me. I watched them beat up and tie down an underage kid in the “observation” room across the hall. I had spoken to him in the waiting room, and he had similarly been taken there on the complaint of relatives, having done not a single thing wrong.

Breakfast (?)                                                                         4$

Lunch                                                                                      7$

HC- Observation Per minute Psy Ed                         2263.66

Total                                                                                  5308.36

The previous year, I earned about 1,600-1,800?$, and nearly lived on just this.

This year, I earned about 600$, most of which went to pay debts, and lived on the food card, less than 50$ per week. And, I sold about 160$ worth of hostas and catnip at my roadside stand, but all tomatoes, etc, with which I might do ok, failed.

“Observation” consists of being placed in a transparent room with a couch and a camera at the ceiling, next to the office while others go on about their work. I stared back at one girl working on a computer, just to be a smart ass, but she closed the blinds. I was of course livid about the camera, but did not show my outraged spirit, which would of course be to these people a useful sign of “mental illness,” like “non-cooperation. and I remember eating only a sandwich the previous day, and drinking only water, but as I said, I was drugged into oblivion. I was transported by ambulance to Monroe County “Promedica,” on Macomb street,” and was quite concerned that I was being taken to Macomb county, which would indeed be an interesting coincidence requiring explanation. As it turned out, Our county was full, they having so much compulsory business of late, and I was quite fortunate. I did not see the sun much, now a single green plant, for the next 19 days, while persistent attempts were made to drug me, first with “Haldol,” and then with “Senequil,” before finally it was admitted that the whole thing was without cause, and I was released. My sister, though, made an effort before a Macomb judge to have me permanently committed, and then to have me evicted.  All this time, my elderly mother struggled without help to take out voluminous amounts of trash and to care for 5 cats, some a way outside in the garage and shed. None of the 4 siblings who were quite present when trying to have me taken away, were around much, and none so much as cleaned the cat litter (which is not good for the elderly to do), 2 miles away from this “sister.” I had told numerous aunts, when trying to escape to Canada, that the mum could not stay there by herself, but was ignored. On mother’s Day, her leg broke by itself, while I was away driving to shop for pet food, and the youngest, non-Trumpster sister was on her way to visit. She was the only one to visit or call on Mother’s Day. Luckily, I had taken her to have the leg x-rayed just a few days prior, as the pain did not feel like a sore muscle, or I may have been accused.  The only text of a book that took 7 years to write was damaged, the inside of the shed soaked, with many papers, as I had been seized while vacuuming, left the door open, and the roof leaks. and no garden planted.

   Just today, two sisters came, the youngest to take the mum shopping, but the middle one for no apparent reason. I worried again that hey would have me taken away for no reason, as this is just how it looked last time. The brother and the eldest, the hyena sister, have not visited their mother a single time in a year now, though they call her on occasion. Not a single person has apologized to me yet, nor have I spoken to a single Aunt. I did call my father on superbowl day, though. Despite being a Trumpster, he is civil so long as I do not say anything significant, like, “Say, have you noticed that I was dead nuts right about Russia, Kaspersky, the spy-tech in the livingroom, Oxy-heroin, Jerid, my legal rights, them having no right to do a single thing you helped them do to me, any legal restriction on my right to emigrate back to Canada, etc…? and he pretends to remember less than he does. Otherwise, I have not spoke to a single Trumpster relative.

 

Justin Martyr on Pre- Christian Christians

   Before Christianity became acceptable rather than persecuted in Rome, the Christians never persecuted a single person over doctrine. Then Constantius the father of Constantine and husband of St. Helen was the first Christian co-emperor, and his story in Eusebius is neglected and very interesting, as, rather than persecute the Christians, he took all those who would become martyrs by refusing to worship the emperor into his service, and dismissed the slavish and the others. Then, as is more well known, Constantine won a battle and attributed his good fortune to the cross of light seen in the sky and posted on his soldier’s shields, and in 1 issued the edict of toleration. But failing to stop there, his son Constantius began some of the worst religious persecutions ever seen. Once Christianity becomes the official religion of Rome, doctrine becomes the ruling opinion, and religious persecution does not cease until Jefferson, Madison and the First Amendment to the U. S. Constitution. It literally did not occur to anyone, even Plato after seeing Socrates put to death for “impiety,” that political orders might just not impose fundamental opinions about the first things. Roger Williams, the first American Baptist and founder of Providence and Rhode Island, seems to have been the originator of Religious liberty, or what came to be called the separation of Church and State. His followers had to persuade Jefferson and Madison, it was so radical an idea, that establishment of religion might be set aside, though in hindsight, it is the only way the 13 colonies could have joined into a sovereign union without religious wars till one sect prevailed. Luther was one of the first to reject the death penalty for heresy, but his followers persecuted the Anabaptist. It is really Roger Williams to whom we owe religious liberty, even though the latter baptists have similarly imposed religious law and shun dissent. The shunning practiced by other sects, such as even the Quakers, to whom we owe much of the abolitionist and feminist equality now universally taken for granted, practice a rather terrible form of this shunning, as do the Mormons, even though they themselves suffered persecution. Only where the faith is mere tradition do people seem to be able to follow John Locke, who may have himself been an atheist, and hold toleration, except for the intolerant to be a principle.

   One can only marvel at this circumstance, and we will spend our lives trying to explain it. Christians have more difficulty loving their neighbor than any other people, or at least as much, as though, despite that little thing about the Samaritan, they were not at all improved in this for having the Messiah himself as a teacher. Indeed, some will even not believe if one were to return from the grave. We come to the conclusion that almost all men are limited to opinion, belief or what Paul calls religion of law. Our paradox of faith and works is necessary because Christians do not distinguish between faith and opinion. But as Platonists, we are led to wonder what it means in the soul to take and hold Christianity as a religion of law. The issue is unexpectedly deep. Following Paul (Romans 2),* we hypothesize that the law makes what Jung calls a shadow, teaching our appetites for example what it means to covet, and really suggesting the forbidden things to the obverse of the imagination. Again strangely, because in the most obvious sense it is not true, nature uncultivated is prior to the law, and even animals “covet,” Paul opens his attempt to explain that he is not saying that the law is sin

…Yet if it had not been for the law, I should not have known sin I should not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.” But sin, finding opportunity in the commandment, wrought in me all kinds of covetousness. Apart from the law, sin lies dead I was once alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin revived and I died; the very commandment which promised life proved to be death to me. For sin, finding opportunity in the commandment, deceived me, and by it killed me….’

                                                                    Romans 7: 7-11

   It is the law that causes the death that leads to rebirth (Romans 6; John 3, Romans 8:13) by being the guide of penance. And here Paul enters into the more famous “So then it is no longer I that do it…” and “I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do…” and there is the famous elliptical reference to a thorn in the flesh he suffered, just to keep him from thinking he was a divinity, despite the height and graciousness of his mind: If the Christ is true, he is one of maybe the 6 or 8 greatest minds of all time, and the second greatest of the Christian minds, despite not being an apostle but a persecutor of the Christians while Jesus lived, till he was famously and proverbially knocked off his high horse.

   To work our way back to Justin Martyr, we have this amusing theory that our taking Christianity as though it were a “religion of law” in the Pauline sense has caused the anti-Christian motion of the history of modernity. What appears sure is that the medieval persecutions and those following, enacted hypocritically by the doctrinal Christians, caused the reaction of common sense and decent humans to reject Christianity, despite nothing of the sort ever having been taught by the Christ. And now, with our lengthy but unprecedented Christian psychology, the reader might be prepared to see what we are trying to explain about Justin Martyr. For if we are correct, the “Antichrist” can only gain a following or find mankind prepared for destruction because of the failure of The Christians- as would make sense for something that…Is not…” its effect is due to the darkness of the human soul. See if you do not find in this saying the significance that I do. Justin writes:

…We have been taught that Christ is the fist-born of God, and we have declared above that He is the Word of whom every ace of men were partakers; and those who lived with the logos (translated reasonably, or with reason, with the word (John 1) are Christians, even though they have been thought Atheists; as, among the Geeks, Socrates and Heraclitus, and men like them; and among the babarians, Abraham, and Ananias, and Azarias, and Misael, and Elias, and many others whose actions and whose names we now decline to recount, because we know it would be tedious. So that even they who lived before Christ, and lived without reason, were wicked and hostile to Christ, and slew those who lived reasonably…

The First Apology of Justin, Chapter 47

   Hence, as it is much more clear now, those professing Christianity, and seriously doing all they think needed to save themselves, though not for its own sake, but for self interest, while harming their neighbor, may just not escape the judgement (John 5), but those who finding the mystery are from the world, or, as Plato showed, are turned and drawn up out of the earth as being like a cave, these are saved, As it seems, even if like Noah and Enoch, they did not know the historical name nor speak this correctly, or use the word and name we use as it is not a matter like magic words. Similarly, those who think themselves followers of Krishna, and find the mysteries may also be saved, and by the Christ, even if like Maimonides, they watched the Christians kill and torture their parents, and so thought Jesus to be evil and idolatrously worshiped god. Similarly, Those who love their neighbor and do deeds of Justice, charity and chastity under the name of Mohammed will be judged according to their works, just as Jesus says (Revelation 20), and if the soul is immortal, no deed of justice is likely to pass away. For the teaching is tat the soul is immortal,regardless (John 5), i is immortal life that we find when we turn and call on the name.

   Justin is the first Christian to read Plato, and he does not assume what Augustine assumes, that every believing Christian is of higher rank than Plato, perhaps the greatest writer of all time. Nor does he assume what Dante assumes in, as we think obscenely, placing Plato and Socrates in Hell. Indeed, we set Dante aside at this page, as a mere poet who did not really understand, and only now, reading Romeo and Juliet, have come to return to him, realizing that he never read Plato at all, as Plato was simply not then available at all. It is a revolution, not so much in understanding Christianity, but in understanding the relation of Christianity to the rest of humanity and thought, of faith and reason and human history. Just as, prior to the end of the days of persecution and the enthronement of Christian dogma, all the Christians were Chiliasts, believers in a literal millennium, and after Augustine none of them were, due to a Flattery of Rome, so prior to this change** all Christians had access to this teaching that Christianity is not a law in the same way that the Mosaic and Mohammedian are laws, to prepare for the Christ. Not a jot need be removed from Mosaic law, and still Jesus frees the adulteress, technically contrary to law, and contrary to the assumption that the Bible is the word of God and cannot be contradicted. The five things Jesus says “you have heard of old” are Mosaic teachings, and when the teaching of Jesus supersedes these Mosaic teachings, he supersedes the teachings of Moses (Matthew 5-7), as the Jews think impossible but the Christians accept, or more accurately ignore, as we also ignore the theoretical difficulty of the post- Pentecostal disagreement between Paul and Peter, when the Apostles first realized the universal implications, if Jesus were not sent only for the Jews, but for all mankind “universally,” as we say. This is not a Pauline invention, but was also known to John, and John agreed. For the Old Testament, contrary to the “word of God” religion of law Christian cults, is only the law for the Jews, while the Noachite law is universal. So too, the peoples of the west have developed the common law with effort, because after Jesus, we who are not Jews are on our own regarding law, though taking Moses, Abraham and Noah, and perhaps Theseus, but but Romulus and not Numa , as guides.

   And many readers notice the monotheism of Plato’s Socrates, which would be strange indeed if his talk about “The God” were for the sake of appearance. Why innovate to appear to uphold custom, as those who think “religion” can be assumed to be an instrument of politics?

   The usual explanation refers to the descent of Jesus into the underworld to free those like Noah and Abraham, without these doing anything different during their lives. But from the perspective outside time, we can say, with the apostle Phillip (Nag Hammadi manuscripts), that from the beginning, the Christ lays down his life for man, or that he way through death is always, in being, apart from conventions made by man, and in this sense apart from names.

   And so it becomes clearer that salvation is not a matter of being born and raised by accident in the right tradition, but that these things are similar to the religions of those considered “pagan.” The splintering of the protestant sects makes this point only more obvious, that men are limited to opinion, and that they hold to this as though it were being, though it is at best a gateway. All men have a tradition, and very few even question these enough to reject some vary contradictory points. Nor is salvation likely to depend upon the slight differences in doctrine that have grown up. The division between eastern and western churches, for example, simply grew with time, and yet, after a millennium, these no longer accept one another’s sacraments. But it is a blessing to have the sacraments, as these communicate to the soul the mysteries, like a breeze bringing access to healthy places.

  *Paul, strangely, teaches, after his teaching against homosexuality in Romans 1, (following Jewish Mosaic and Noachite law- a point so fundamental that Jesus never mentioned it)- teaches, as we read, that the worse sin is in those judging the homosexuals. “for in passing judgement upon him you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, are doing the very same things. And he does not say if you are, he says you are. We reason, or hypothesize, that it is not only that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory…(3:23), but that moral indignation is an anger demonstrating faction in the soul, and un-transformed appetite in the one seized by indignation. Otherwise the appetites and the shame that keeps the appetites from ruling the young, as distinct from genuine evil where one intends to harm another, whether for their own advantage or worse from sheer malice- The appetites are literally a joke, and the proper subject not of tragedy but comedy. Our subjection to the ignoble things of the body is a joke, and precisely because, unlike the necessary bodily things that we hide, these things are, avoidable or almost entirely avoidable, and base! The virtuous soul is entirely free of them, though this is rare, and our “self-esteem” leads us to fool ourselves!

**The fist two sections of the Bob Dylan song “Sad Eyed Lady of the Lowlands” corresponds, perhaps intentionally, to these two phases of Church history.

 

 

Tweets Preserved

  1. The Lincoln is: …with a Bonaparte for a commander, could not by force, take a drink from the Ohio, or make a track on the Blue Ridge, in a trial of a thousand years….danger…amongst us. -(1838, Lyceum). That is why they used the internet. Potomac must come from Jefferson?

  2. Now, AS we try to fix the effects on American politics due to Russian and Alt right interference, they are going to get really wicked. We cannot imagine, and that is part of the problem. But all their henchmen are slaves who do not know or care what they are doing. An advantage.

  3. We are getting LOTS of interference lately, kids, sorry and be careful. Japanese sites are suddenly especially questionable, and “game” sites.

  4. There is not a shred of doubt in this mind that the Russian involvement elected Trump. MAYBE 30% of the Americans are that stupid, but we are just not that stupid and corrupt- yet.

  5. …Or, Rubio could wise up and LEAD the Republican party. But that is just not going to happen, is it?.

  6. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Mark A. McDonald

    St Francis, Jesus and Ghandi retweet:

    Mark A. McDonald added,

  7. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Mark A. McDonald

    Like this, what, passive sexual harassment? We are so glad the power hollywood-workplace thing is ENDING that we fear to raise the question of those who voluntary use that to advance their career.

    Mark A. McDonald added,

  8. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Janet Smith

    Or one serious complaint, not maybe a guy in intrepidation like me in the loft with my girl I loved when I was 14! I was too scared to make a mistake, and lost her! (Things were different then, all mystery.) ‘Least she married the guy she dumped me for!) Women are passive.notfair

    Mark A. McDonald added,

  9.   Retweeted

    When you walk out of the studio and see this…Rumor has it, colored the eyes himself.

  10. Garrison Keillor and Prairie Home Companion are missed on Sundays. We should consider whether he was scammed, even by the Trump Russians, along with Al Franken, as their offences seemed quite flimsy.

  11. Jack’s numbes are low, and we are prevented from following the newer site, cause he’s be’in messed with. This has been reported to both Twitter and Congress without effect. “Its just that McDonald guy again,” they say! You will never have another free election if that continues.

  12. One contradiction is that Islam believes in both OT and NT scriptures, in which Jesus IS worshiped by the Apostles. The witnesses too are contradicted by this. Pater hamon, en tois ouranois…honoma su…(my book is way outside) hosion tas…? Bye Rexella! Happy Sunday!

  13. Sunday I do scripture. Mo rejects the trinity as taught in the 7th century and Marian theology also rejected now by Protestants. there are differences, but not as much, and this teaching is theologically correct. “Allah” is the same God.

  14. Repent like Nineveh for Jonah, and prove us wrong. Otherwise… But it is possible, and not necessary that is why it is our fault. “Love your neighbor,” not just your Christian Republican neighbor. No, it does not look good, and Jonah was upset ’cause Babylonians Repented.

  15. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Jack Van Impe Min.

    This includes the “Our Father.” It is theologically correct that “Allah” is the God of Abraham, the same as the Father. Mo disagrees about the trinity, and does not get “begotten not made,” but thinks only of human begetting. We too believe it not right to worship any man.

    Mark A. McDonald added,

  16. i.e., We are not at war with 1.9 Billion Muslims, but rather, a few thousand, who declared war on us, and we encourage to un-declare it. What if the Palestinians learned peaceful protest from St. Martin Luther Kind, Jr?

  17. Mo brings monotheism, and the God of Abraham and Melchizedek to the Arabs and others (through Ishmael), and mo explicitly calls the Apostles “faithful,” i.e. “Muslim,” believers also in the Last day,” justice, charity and chastity. You have something better, given Acts 16:6-7?

  18. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Jack Van Impe Min.

    Jack’s been on both sides of Acts 16:6-7, where Paul in prevented by the Spirit from preaching in areas now Muslim. We say the reason is they had to be prepared by a legislator for the Christ, even as Israel was prepared by the sometimes violent Moses. Mo is not ISIS. But GO Jack

    Mark A. McDonald added,

    1. ‘cept scripture New Testament was not set till the 4th century, and Paul does not distinguish the apocrypha, O T text only in Greek. The word of God IS “in the beginning,” (John 1) and does not refer to a written text.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    2. Free Speech? Then watch for and counter the interference with which speech will be punished, controlling elections and American politics.. Does the FBI defend the BILL OF RIGHTS?

    3. Supreme Court Case #17-857 now (and #16-907 and#161464, previous) is the proper way to deal with an illegitimate election that is being used to destroy America from within, as Khrushchev said they would. The Americans see only the surface, and Putin knows this well. Free Speech

    4. The Democrats are also complicit: Only 58 supported impeachment when proposed WITH ZERO PRESS, for a third time. Dems fear Pence, who is further “right,” but may have no Russian connections. Nor do the Dems support REVOTE, SC#17-857, also ZERO PRESS.

    5. Obama was powerless to oppose the suspension of the Bill of Rights, because the Americans were too stupid to see that it would end free elections and lead to tyranny. That tyranny is now being imposed, one office at a time, and we are too stupid to IMPEACH, like, tomorrow!

    6. The reason most Americans do not know about Kaspersky may be that the FBI thought they were cooperating with the Russians to counter terrorist attacks by ISIS- on which they have done very well. But spying on Americans has ENDED free elections, perhaps forever.

    7. Free Speech: The FBI was warned about Kaspersky collecting data and allowing targeted interference over a year ago, and literally hung up on me, as though I were on a list of people to be ignored. This is documented. Most Americans do not know about Kaspersky.

    8. Free speech: 1. Trump is using the failure of the FBI to install henchmen, seizing the U.S. law. 2. The connection to Russian interference is quite serious, here, in Las Vegas especially, and in the future, as they try to prevent our correcting what they have done to our gov’t

    9. Science Friday considers forgery on NPR repeat today. The remedy to the cat and mouse aspect of tech is LAWS, enforced. Quick, before the internet is no longer like a 9 year old lying. Wanna do business in the U.S.A.? BILL OF Rights! But first Congress must stop pimping voters.

    10. @realChrisMills_You might like Jack Van Impe: we have learned from him for years, though he is wrong to think ISIS is Islam, or to think Muslims are the enemy. He is old lately, but before he was sick, his t.v. show was a genuine ministry. Best reader of Rev. (God of Abraham, etc

    11. Anik Nail gets it long before the Republicans! Party of Reagan? This is just sick. And were centrists, not “liberals.”

    12. From chair of Nail’s U. S. fanclub: me! We’ve been screamin’ bloody murder for a long while. The Ruskies got Trump elected, we think to destroy America. They used the “Republican ” party, who STILL does not get it. Through control of the internet. Do not let that happen there!

    13. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Anil Naik.

      Rather, the occupation is/was through the internet. Our own slavishness to moneymaking allowed this to occur. A tyranny is poised to seize the law itself.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    14. The Mortal Danger, by Solzhenitsyn: How Misconceptions About Russia Imperil America (1980). Read this and extrapolate. Free Russia from Communism. It is MARX that is the New kind of tyranny, and we will show anyone who will look. Many Catholics and some others know this.

    15. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted tRick Salsman

      Talking to an Aussie the other day, he said, What are you Americans afraid of?” I said “Other Americans?”

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    16. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Evan McMullin

      Exactly how the Trump-Russians debate. They are lying from the start, like a salesman shyster: and we, fools, talk back like they were serious! “Don’t look at that man behind the curtain.”- The Wizard of Oz Find water. She always had the ruby slippers.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    17. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted tRick Salsman

      Everyone stand up at once! (Jim Morrison must have freaked those guys out! Too bad, we think, he read too much Blake and not enough Shakes, he’d still be writing, stuff like “Wintertime wind,” “breath under water till the end”…Spanish Caravan, Love Street, 20th c. fox)

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    18.   Retweeted

      Think for 5 seconds that your child was killed in a school shooting. Then a top representative of the . Shows up the weekend after to collect money. And when asked about your child’s death. He responds. “I don’t want to talk politics”. That’s a parents reality right now

  1. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Jonathan Ferguson (Wallace Runnymede 4 Freedom)

    This stuff is good, and important to know. We will be doing some reading!

    Mark A. McDonald added,

  2. “… cross the Atlantic, nor take a drink from the Potomac…” said Lincoln, I believe. Barack: …”changes in hearts and minds…a hole in his heart, one that government programs alone may not be able to repair.” Christians measure themselves to choose the “faith” of Trump.

  3. Rubio took 3 million $ from the NRA? A student once said, with a gleam, Mr. M, “I would do anything for a B…” I said, ja, like, study? Then I joke with my guy friends, “ya, I shoulda done her and flunked her anyway!” We want Rubio to grow Kahunas, and become an Independent.

  4. I want to free Marco Rubio from my boycott of the Republican party, and I am proud that if a foreign nation attacks us on the ground, they know they cannot take us hose by house. Maybe he will become an Independent. But that is why Russia first attacked us through the internet.

  5. Where is that Buddhist guy who said, “people are like stones, being polished, when we rub against one another. Aristotle: Man is by nature political.

  6. As I told the site “off Guardian,” when attacked about the sins of America in foreign policy, at least I have liberty, and a representative in Congress, so there is HOPE that we can fix, for example “extr. rend.,” etc. Our political liberty is disappearing.

  7. Why are there no centrists in Poland?

  8. Barack, p. 215, HOPE: …require changes in hearts and minds… when a gangbanger (i.e. “anyone”) shoots indiscriminately into a crowd because he feels somebody disrespected him, … a problem of morality…a hole in his heart, one that gov’t prog. alone may not be able to repair

    1. But we are just too slow. Congress is on Oxy!

    2. In a few minutes, Florida Governor Rick Scott will step before the cameras for a press conference. Please be reminded that he has passed some of the most friendly laws ever in the state of Florida. He is in the pocket of the powerful gun lobby.

    3.   Retweeted

      Hey, I’m a retired combat veteran, I have a gun safe full of my toys. But, I burned my NRA card years ago. Something’s wrong when kids die in their schools every few weeks. Instead of getting some sensible gun laws, we get Russia donating to Trump through the NRA.

    4. Republican Decision Making Flowchart

    5. According to The Trace, $21 million is the highest amount of money the NRA has ever spent on a presidential candidate

    6. What possible defense is there of a legal regime where a 19 year old cannot buy a can of beer but can buy a weapon of war?

    7.   Retweeted

      So in the USA an 18 year is allowed to buy a semi-automatic weapon with high magazine but can’t have a beer in a restaurant with his parents next to him?

    8. Yea, people said a lot of things, and they endangered their lives and had them taken away to be drugged, but did not listen and do anything. Do not call police unless you have a real reason. One half of all police shootings are “mental heath” calls, and no one cares.

    9.   Retweeted

      “The FBI is investigating the National Rifle Association to determine whether Russians illegally funneled money through the organization to help the Trump campaign. Beyond Russian meddling, this allegation illustrates a problem of even broader scope in our political system.”

    10. Fredon Moniteau is on it today!

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    11. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Fredon Moniteau

      Ok, we are getting a sugarcoated version on the tv news, so I will retweet this, even though it is too scary.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    12. Thanx, Mr. Eden. Literally no one else gets this point. THAT, too, is what we do different from other nations.

    13. Guns in America, updated 2/15/18

    14. Old Blog: CLC on gun control:A centrist position. Second Amendment and U. S.

    15. Old Blog: CLC on gun control: Gun Control: The Wedge

    16. Old Blog: NRA Forbids Research that Might Lead to Gun Control?

    17. No news on the Chaldeans seized and held at Youngstown, Ohio for illegal deportation to a place where they face persecution? Visit Nathan Kalasho Twitter

    18. And the only solution may be civil war, which plays right into the hand, or chess game, of Putin.

    19. Yep, Chinese student spies are a thing, along with a lot of other nefarious shit.This is not being racist, this is the reality. If you want to see racist, see what they say about the West off the record. Not pretty

    20. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Anabelle

      We are seeing fascism become entrenched in our nation.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    21. Ok, it is time to ask how many members of Congress are on Oxy. I’m guessing it is well over 50%, and I’m also guessing that they won’t tell us, just like they don’t say when shooters are on antidepressants.

    22. The ninth Justice will of course be recused from SC#17-857, no?

    23. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Anabelle

      Maybe “they” are waiting for the fact of Russian data collection and interference to sink in, but an indictment might get 67 of those 98 Senators off their…block. The Dems in the House seem to fear Pence? That shows how little the significance of Russian internet is understood.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    24. There has never been an impeachment case with more evidence, literally every person around Trump with ties to Russians Why do we not act? Something is very wrong. it does not add up.

    25. If this shooter is on antidepressants like many others, the knowledge will not be made public, and it is difficult to tell if “treatment” made things worse. People on antidepressant become suicidal, and bad souls do not care about others. Go figure.

    26. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Anabelle

      And will there be no indictment until it is completed, say, in ten years? After we get nuked, become a fascist nation, or all Russian?

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    27. Did you know that Aderal is similar to meth, Oxy similar to heroin, and antidepressants involved in almost every public shooting with victims unknown to the shooter? That the fact is suppressed? That there is no scientific study of the ethical effects of psychodope on bad souls?

    28. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted BlackWoMANMajik

      And did you hear that the Russians donated to the Republican party? Yupper. INDICT! IMPEACH!! REVOTE!!! Boycott the Republican party, permanently. CLC= Centrist Libertarian Constitutionalist Party.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    29. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Shannon Watts

      Compare this graph to the last graph, and account for the difference by Big Pharma.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    30. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Shannon Watts

      We also allow Big Pharma to drug our people, and EVERY shooting turns out to involve anti-depressants. The fact is suppressed, because our response is more “mental health” treatment, and we do not know what this means.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    31. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Greg Hogben

      States can issue gun licences similar to drivers licences. It is just a bit different, due to the 2A, but not much. The 2A does not allow private ownership of tanks and nukes, nor does anyone think it does. So with these mr. 15 assault whatever bullshit.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    32. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Greg Hogben

      There is a centrist position on guns that drives a wedge between responsible and irresponsible, recognizes limits like no machine guns, denounces gun shows and lobbies, and uses arms to protect the rest of the Bill of Rights.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    33.  

      Jill Sullivan Retweeted Martin Heinrich

      Jill Sullivan added,

    34.   Retweeted

      /THREAD/ Ok, a few words on guns. Let’s just start with the obvious. There are an insane amount of guns floating around the US. And yes I mean insane literally. It is at levels that should be treated as the result of some kind of pathology.

    35. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Kurt Eichenwald

      Boycott the Republican Party. We need Wicked Politician con-troll!

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    36. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Blue Soulz

      The gun lobbies and gun shows is kindof a separate issue, as are machine guns and campaign finance, oh and Russian money entering the Republican party through the NRA. Point your f’n guns in the right direction, and defend the whole Bill of Rights.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    37.  

      Ted Lieu Retweeted BJ Lutz

      Definition of complicity: Watching mass shootings like in Florida today and doing nothing. Multiple bills have been introduced in Congress to address gun violence. But Dems can’t even get a hearing or vote on those bills. Congress’ continuing inaction is a dereliction of duty.

      Ted Lieu added,

    38. AWND Retweeted Anabelle

      Sorta funny to think that Mueller might gain anything from Starr’s investigation. On a lot of levels – think about it. 😂

      AWND added,

    39. Boycott the Republican party.

    40. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Fredon Moniteau

      And people on the terrorist watch list. NPR on the Senate floor, “We could not pass a law to keep those on the watch list from buying guns.” But we have allowed Big Pharma to teach psychology, so its a win-win for the oligarchs. They will use it to disarm us before they attack.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    41. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Bill Browder

      Come read about Paul Johnson on Marxism in my wordpress blog at . (If they will let you). I was trying to talk to “off-Guardian Trump-Russians about an article that says Magnitsky was not murdered. After all, I did not see it myself!

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    42. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted jesus

      Thank You, Jesus!

      Mark A. McDonald added,

    43. Mark A. McDonald Retweeted Dr Kelly Sennholz

      Nice. Boycott the “Republican Party. Calling all centrists.

      Mark A. McDonald added,

Guns in America, updated 2/15/18

  Once again we have a shooting in a school, and this become a weekly occurrence in America, so that soon the schools and churches may close down. The following is an updated version of an older article, as it is very much the same old story, with just a few additions. The CLC, my centrist political party, has a unique position based upon a comprehensive philosophical view, and we invite anyone who wants to make progress on the issue to pillage our points (as is often done), especially for the common good. Guns, though, are only half the issue. While everyone knows too about illegal drugs, the unseen part of the unique problem in the United states is prescription drugs and the ignorance of our supposed “mental health” profession, which, unknown to the majority, simply lacks a scientific basis. Ironically, and from fear, we turn to mental health remedies because of our paralysis on the gun control issue.since it is part of the cause of these shootings, it is obvious that these shooters have a “problem,” but our psychiatry literally does not believe that it is possible to consider injustice in the soul, no can injustice be remedied with drugs. One has to love justice, and there is no drug for this, though justice can be cultivated by education, that is not our education.

   Once again we have a shooting in which someone who ought not have a gun has killed, this time nine people in a Church. America is at an impasse with our own Second Amendment and the NRA, intent on securing liberty. Beneath this is the deeper question posed by the truth that guns protect as well as kill us. We wish all arms could be set aside, and for some this is possible, but this is not going to be practical.

   Progress must be made where progress can be made. The President is right, other nations do not have this problem. Whatever one thinks of the Second Amendment, the whole idea of these gun shows and the gun show mentality of irresponsibly arming just about everyone is ridiculous. Similarly, to allow gun lobbies to influence congress to allow the sale of machine guns to just about anyone is obscene.

   The Second Amendment says that the right of the people to keep and bear arms will not be infringed by the federal government because of the requirement of security to a free state. Should China or Canada invade Michigan, Michigan must be able to defend itself without waiting for Washington. It is for this reason that the right of the people to keep and bare arms will not be infringed. The Second Amendment, if I am not mistaken, is not one of the elements of the Bill of Rights that have been selectively incorporated or applied to the States through the Fourteenth Amendment. The States must, for example, allow free speech, but are not yet required even to observe the right of the people to keep and bear arms, and might certainly license, for example, those allowed to bear arms in public.

   So progress on guns in America might focus on State laws and licensing, without an attempt to do this directly from the federal level. We cannot, though, prevent all irresponsible people from driving, nor from having guns. Another area is a change in opinion, which America can do voluntarily, and without the influence of the federal government.

   An implication of the spirit of the Second Amendment is that, as citizens, when we bear arms, we are under the command of the Governor. But the whole question is very complex and difficult. There obviously are limits to private arms, and the supreme court has recognized some, similar to the obvious limits on free speech, when the rights of others are violated, say, by false advertising. It just seems obvious that one might not be allowed, say, to own a tank and drive it about the neighborhood, or own a private missile arsenal. But we do not know how this works in law, where no one else’s rights are yet violated. America is sometimes a violent place, and the right of self defense might require, for example, that if I am ordered to appear at the Federal building in Detroit, in an area where the safety to stop at a gas station cannot even be secured, I would have a right to buy and carry a gun, perhaps checking it like a coat at the court building. Given a choice, I simply do not go where I would need arms. But if we can be compelled to go there, we ought have the right. A better bet is just to not breakdown or need to stop for gas. Convicted felons lose this right to self defense and to bear arms, and that too is a difficult question. The law must foresee, so that some petty peaceful felony or the “mental health” judgement of one’s enemies cannot disarm an endangered person. That is what judges are for, and rather than blanket bans, individual determinations might be required so that terrible sounding categories like “terrorist watch list” cannot be misapplied. But the poor have no such right from the start, and must be ordered about our violent streets to appear here or there with rickety cars and scraping up gas money. Do we not have a right to not  bear arms, and not to need to bear arms?

   With my sleeveless shirt, I have the right to bare arms, just like a wild grizzly has the right to bear arms. And the Grizzly is difficult to disarm!

   My old teacher Mr Skinner was once asked, about the arts, “What if they have a gun?” implying that the arts are useless now. His answer was amusing: “What if I do, too?” And in truth, the ability to control one’s body which is holding the gun is extremely important when one is armed. It is more important than being armed. He was a soldier in the Korean war, and they fought attack dogs!

   Personally, I barely want the right to turn on the stove burner, and am so terrified of the difficulty of keeping track of my glasses, let alone a gun, that I do not want one, even yet, having received numerous death threats. But I might lie, too, and if I needed a gun quickly, say, to defend the elderly from a particular threat, I would want to get one quickly and legally. I have been asked by medical forms and fake survey questionnaires whether I have a gun, not to mention police, some of whom are on the take from the mob. Charming to consider that information is for sale, you know, for  “marketing purposes.” If I did have a gun, I may well have been shot recently, as anyone can read from my “Conversations with Relatives,” all of whom are likely on prescription drugs AND armed! Not being considered armed likely saved my life, and this is something to consider. But we have always thought that women, who are subject to rape as men are not, might keep a pistol in their pocket while traveling, but again, it is a nightmare trying to keep a 3 or four year old away from anything, magic markers, let alone a gun.

   The right of self defense, which includes the right to defend others when police are not present, is assumed in the “right to life,” or self-preservation, but is nowhere explicit in the Constitution. It is in the thinker John Locke, Second Discourse. Where there is no law, one is thrown back upon the “state of nature,” which can indeed be a condition of war. Similarly, the right to bear arms and the right to peaceably assemble does not add up to the right to assemble armed. When we assemble armed, we are under the commander in chief, obedient to his orders. Hence, private armies are simply illegal, and can be disbanded by Governors with a word.

   It is education that might teach us how and when to use arms, but this is of course wholly ignored. Nor do the martial arts teach us when to fight. That is a philosophic question. It is the first question of the martial arts, but is itself above and beyond the martial arts. But all martial arts, whole lives devoted, are not good in themselves, but only when used toward good purposes. General Rommel wasted his art in service to a tyrant. Instructors have ended in despair upon seeing their lives devotion used to tyrannize the elderly or bull ones neighbors. Can an unjust man have Ki?  But we say one’s intention must always be one with one’s action, even in practice. That is why we practice control, rather than wearing pads and beating one another up, losing practice time to injury and selecting in classes for the most violent types. Our purpose is to arm the weak, against the oppression of the strong. The purpose, end or goal is of primary importance, and cannot be addressed. All good things are useless without wisdom, as Socrates tells Meno. It is the purpose that gives form to the character. This, at the root of responsible gun ownership, can be cultivated, but not by our education. The fact remains that a gun in the home is 43 times more likely to be used for harm as for defense. We hold the NRA in part responsible to find compromises that will bring this number down by at least 43.

   But again we are grieving for our nation. Again a church in the South. One recalls the Birmingham church bombing. These things demonstrate where justice lies on these issues, and that is what Dr. King is all about, but still: Is one not tempted to call them out on this, those courageous Neo-nazis who strike at school girls and people praying for peace?

Wikipedia: Mass Killings under Communism

Reprinted here because the THICK Americans just do not get it. We estimated 30-70 million for the Soviet Union alone excluding famine and civil war, or about one million per year. But is not the numbers, rather, its the point.

WIKIPEDIA (Go there for whole article)

Mass killings occurred under some Communist regimes during the twentieth century. Estimates of the death toll vary widely, depending on the methodology used. Scholarship focuses on the causes of mass killings in single societies, though some claims of common causes for mass killings have been made. Some higher estimates of mass killings include not only mass murders or executions that took place during the elimination of political opponents, civil warsterror campaigns, and land reforms, but also lives lost due to war, famine, disease, and exhaustion in labor camps. There are scholars who believe that government policies and mistakes in management contributed to these calamities, and, based on that conclusion combine all these deaths under the categories “mass killings”, democide, politicide, “classicide”, or loosely defined genocide. According to these scholars, the total death toll of the mass killings defined in this way amounts to many tens of millions; however, the validity of this approach is questioned by other scholars. In his summary of the estimates in the Black Book of CommunismMartin Malia suggested a death toll of between 85 and 100 million people.[1]

As of 2011, academic consensus has not been achieved on causes of large scale killings by states, including by states governed by communists. In particular, the number of comparative studies suggesting causes is limited. The highest death tolls that have been documented in communist states occurred in the Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin, in the People’s Republic of China under Mao Zedong, and in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge. The estimates of the number of non-combatants killed by these three regimes alone range from a low of 21 million to a high of 70 million.[2][dubious ] There have also been killings on a smaller scale in North KoreaVietnam, and some Eastern European and African countries.

Jack Van Impe, Revelation and Epistemology, or How Do We Know?

   The Revelation is of course very hard to read, and it may be that no one we know has done better than Jack Van Impe. But, in addition to the 3 secrets of Fatima and a study of the history of Western thought and politics, he lacks philosophy, and indeed thinks he does not need her. As a result, while getting an amazing number of points right, he can make certain errors that are then incurable, because, as is usual for human beings, he thinks he knows already and need not apply humility here and inquire further. In these matters, the attempt to apply theory to the particulars might well be the Holy Spirit, but it might lead to grave errors. An example would be the failure to distinguish between radical Islam and traditional Islam, while refusing to read the Quran. This would be like assuming that David Koresh, with an arsenal of machine guns, is the true example of what Christianity is. And it may well be that law enforcement should have left Koresh alone unless he violated the rights of others, or it may be that he was violating the rights, for example of children that were members of his group. But if law enforce used the law to attack Koresh otherwise, the whole thing would be a grave tragedy, and law enforcement responsible for those innocents that were burned to death.

   The crucial text is Plato’s Republic, 510b. Amid the highest teaching ever presented, at least by a human, and entering on the most famous attempt to give an account of The Good, Socrates tells Glaucon about hypotheses and the upper section of the famous divided line:

“Now, in its turn, consider also how the intelligible section should be cut.”

“How?”

“Like this: in one pat of it a soul, using as images the things that were previously imitated, is compelled to investigate on the basis of hypotheses and makes its way not to a beginning but to an end; while in the other part it makes its way to a beginning that is free from hypotheses; starting out from hypothesis and without the images used in the other part, by means of forms themselves it makes its inquiry through them.”

Glaucon, like the entire history of students of the philosophers, does not understand, and so Socrates has recourse to an image. He has of course told Glaucon, when begged to give an account of the Good itself:

I wish I could,” I said, “that I were able to pay and you wee able to receive it itself, and not just the offspring (tokos, also “interest”), as is the case now. Anyhow, receive this interest and child of the good itself. But be careful that I don’t in some way unwillingly deceive you in rendering the account of the interest fraudulent.”

 Socrates then explains, by way of analogy, how Geometers use the things they draw to refer not to the particular circle drawn, but to the circle itself, tying to see what can be seen only with thought. the addition, these things, “of which there are shadows and images in water” refers to the shadows and images in the allegory of the cave (516a, 532c).

Socrates continues about hypotheses:

It is compelled to use hypotheses, and does not go to a beginning because it is unable to step out above the hypotheses. And it uses as images the very things of which images ae made by the things below, and in comparison with which they are opined to be clea and given honor…

Well, then, go on to understand that by the other segment of the intelligible,, I mean that which argument itself grasps with the power of dialectic, making the hypotheses not beginnings but really hypotheses- that is, steppingstones and springboards- in order to reach what is free from hypotheses at the beginning of the whole. When it has grasped this, argument now depends on that which depends on this beginning and in such fashion goes back down again to an end; making no use of anything sensed in any way, but using forms themselves, going though forms to forms, it ends in forms too.

    In religion, and without philosophy, inquiry is based upon first principles held by opinion, which it is considered impious to use as steppingstones and springboards to ascend. Then in descent, action is undertaken on the basis of partial truths but with the authority of the Holy Spirit.

   The three Abraham-ic faiths not only need one another, but their leaders now MUST philosophize. The alternative is either World War or artificial empire, Apocalypse or dystopia. All that is needed to so is to hold humility where humility belongs, and faith where faith belongs, otherwise known as courage and moderation.

   The freedom of religion established by the First Amendment to the U. S. Constitution allows the natural selection of opinions and the cultivation, rare but possible, of the good for man.

And, by the way, the soul and its good is more important and higher than the body and its goods.

Happy St. Valentines Day, 2018-MM

 

Jack Van Impe: A Summary of His Teaching

   The following is from note 60 to page 46 of my commentary on the Revelation. Only Chapter One, containing a demonstration that the apostle John is indeed our author, is available on WordPress. We have intended to publish the rest, and a copyrighted impression is in the Library of Congress as an e-book. We have edited it ourselves about 7 times, but it needs an independent editor, especially for capitalization. A paper copy is essential for reading, so that one might read with pen in hand, marking up the book, which is intended to be read. The old custom of not marking up ones study Bible has no doubt led to a great deal of reading being lost. My own Oxford text is falling apart, but it is possible to return to an experience in this way years later.

   Jack Van Impe is one of thew foremost readers of the Revelation and the book of Daniel together. His Television show, Jack Van Impe Presents. This show is a distillation of over fifty years of reading and preaching on the revelation in relation to the political events of the present time. His understanding of the prophesied alliances and alignments of the nations seems to me unsurpassed. Many of the suggestions in his teaching seem most probable, and we will have occasion to follow his account at various points below. Where we do not follow him appears to be in a failure to separate the visible and invisible things where these should or might be separated. An example is in his occasional  identification of the heavens with the visible cosmos, and hence the spirits of the air with literal extraterrestrial beings. Arising out of the American Baptist tradition, he equates 4:1 with the rapture, quite dogmatically, without rejecting other possibilities or explaining that one. He does not comment on the secrets of Fatima, the prophetic vision of the Catholic tradition which St. Lucy once identified with Revelation 9-11. Nor does he understand the significance for his topic of the history of the West, the history of philosophy and the most fundamental thought of man on man.

   That said, the fundamentals of his teaching are:

1) That the prophesied time is that of the end of the age (aion) and not the end of the world; rather, scripture teaches a world without end, even as we say in the mass.

2) The five sections of the image of Daniel 2, Dreamed by the King and known and interpreted by Daniel, are five world empires preceded by the Egyptian and Assyrian and beginning with the Babylon of Nebuchadnezzar. From the head that is Babylon, the image continues through the Medo-Persian, Greek and Roman empires, through the division of the Eastern and Western empires, and then the ten toes of a revived Roman empire.

3) The European Union is the revived Roman empire prophesied in the image of the second chapter of Daniel.

4) The Church was in error to follow Augustine contrary Millennialists or Chiliasts, in teaching that thee would not be a literal thousand year reign of the saints.

5) There will be a literal rapture of the Christians before the tribulation.

6) The return of the Jews to Israel in 1948 and their taking of Jerusalem in 1967 are the fulfillment of the prophecy of the return of the Jews from worldwide dispersion and the beginning of the generation of the end times as prophesied by Isaiah and Ezekiel, as well as Daniel, and finally

7) That the time of the Antichrist is ushered in with a thee wave assault outlined in Ezekiel 38 and 39, leading to the battle of Armageddon.

Van Impe also teaches that 9:26, “the people of the Prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary” means that the Antichrist is Roman, as the Romans destroyed the Temple in Jerusalem in 70 AD under Titus and by the General Vespasian.

We note that Fascism is a revived Roman fasces, literally the rods and axes that were the symbol of Roman power, and Machiavelli especially restored Roman politics without the Roman gods, and this is indeed the Anti-christian motion of modernity.

The two legs of the Roman empire correspond to the Eastern and Western Empires, and 10 nations, perhaps five from each, are ten kings of the end times. Crucial to the Reading of the image in the Revelation is the difference between the seven heads, the seven historical world empires ruling over Jerusalem, and the ten horns, identified with the ten kings to rule at the same time in a revived Roman Empire.

Paul Johnson: Modern Times on Marx and Communism

   Paul Johnson was a major part of a realization that occurred in my education, changing me from a regular Jesus hippie to something a bit more serious. At the University of Dallas, we had a class called Marx/Lenin, and here I was able to read deeply into Marx, seeing the philosophic turn that is inseparable from the mass killings in the communist tyrannies of the Twentieth Century. Modern scholars do not get the essential connection between the theory of Marx and the millions of corpses in Russia, China, and Cambodia, let alone its similarity to the Nazi holocaust of the Jews, as Communism and Nazism are extreme opposites of the political left and right. I wrote a 40 page term paper, which was not unusual, and have Marx reduced to some 12 or 16 fundamental points that he keeps repeating, but that do not jump right out at the reader from Das Capital. The hypothesis, regarding how this arose as a development of the bloodshed of the French Revolution, will have to wait for the publication of that paper. But one day, when he was visiting from Great Britain, I had the honor of buying Mr. Johnson a cappuccino at the coffee bar there at UD, and we talked a while, though I could do little more than express my gratitude for his history writhing. Later, in my American Government class, I would include excerpts from his work, to try to get the students to awaken to the significance of what is at stake in our study which began with a bit of Aristotle on the 6 kinds of regime and the principles in the Declaration of Independence.

   Johnson teaches:

There is no essential moral difference between class-warfare and race-warfare, between destroying a class and destroying a race. thus the modern practice of genocide was born.

                                                                Modern Times, p. 71

 Johnson cites Lenin himself:

   The extraordinary commission is neither an investigating commission nor a tribunal. It is an organ of struggle, acting on the home front of a civil war. It does not judge the enemy; it strikes him…We are not carrying out war against individuals. We are exterminating the bourgeoisie as a class. We are not looking for evidence or witnesses to reveal deeds or words against the Soviet power. The first question we ask is- to what class does he belong, what are his origins, upbringing, education or profession? These questions define the fate of the accused. This is the essence of the Red terror.

                                                                       Modern Times, p. 71

Again contrary to the modern scholars, the same diabolical intention is quite present in the thought of Marx:

The vengeance of the people will break forth with such ferocity that not even the year 1793 enables us to envision it…

   And what, after all, did the scholars think the “violent overthrow of the bourgeoise” Communist Manifesto, Marx-Engels Reader, p. 483) would look like? What is strange, though, is the continuing war against the ineradicable bourgeois nature at the root of private property. The above is from a series of excerpts from the correspondence of Marx and Engels assembled by Alexsandr Solzhenitsyn in the Mortal Danger, cited by Thomas G. West in his essay which argues quite persuasively that the core of Marx is this violent Revolution (rather than the theoretical historical-economic determinism..* Lest there is any difficulty convicting Marx in a brief blog,

There is only one way of shortening, simplifying and concentrating the bloodthirsty death throes of the old society and the bloody birth pangs of the new- evolutionary terror…

We are pitiless and we ask no pity from you. When our time comes we shall not conceal terrorism with hypocritical phrases…

The vengeance of the people will break forth with such ferocity that not even the year 1793 enables us to envision it…

We shall be constrained to undertake communist experiments and extravagant measures, the untimeliness of which we know better than anyone else…Until the world is able to form a historical judgement of such events, we shall be considered “beasts,” which doesn’t matter…

Finally, West cites Solzhenitsyn,

Marx and Engels reiterated on many occasions, “once we are at the helm, we shall be obliged to enact the year 1793.”

The Mortal Danger, pp. 113-114

Johnson also notes that Churchill uniquely was the only one who saw the Marxist regimes for nearly what they were, and are. Then the West was allied with them in defeating Hitler, and of course no one wanted to call them out. Johnson writes:

…with one exception none of the Allied statesmen involved even began to grasp the enormous significance of the establishment of this new type of totalitarian dictatorship, or the long term effect of its implantation in the heart of the greatest land power on earth. The exception was Winston Churchill…Churchill never wavered in his view that it ought to be a prime object of the policy of the peaceful, democratic great powers to crush this new kind of menace while they still could.

Modern Times, p. 73-74.

 

So, it is not so surprising that such a thing could come to be and so few notice. Marxism is not accurately characterized by “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need, ” as it is presented, nor is it about holding hands and sharing things.

 But it is not that these things were entirely hidden. It is more that they are beyond the pale of the human imagination, or perhaps what Nietzsche calls our “horizon.” Johnson cites a 1918 Russian army newspaper:

Without mercy, without sparing, we will kill our enemies in scores of hundreds, let them be thousands, let them drown themselves in their own blood…let there be floods of blood of the bourgeoise.

Modern Times, p. 70

Communism, of course, preceded fascism in history, just as Marx preceded Nietzsche in German thought. The theoretical diversion between theory and practice on the right requires quite a bit more explaining, as Nietzsche is not especially anti-Semitic, nor even especially into the restoration of the Roman fasces, as might be thought of Machiavelli. The thought based on the principle of power after the destruction of all ethics is not opposed to using any difference to impose itself upon human beings, considered as matter, or to return to a Marxist phrase, “masses.” Lenin, of course, ignored the Marxist idea of the communist revolution as developing by the necessary march of a determined historical dialectic out of the industrial revolution- as the owners of the means of production- and transferred the theory to the Russian peasantry, a non-industrialized demos, who were then to revolt against the few rich and the owners of land in Czarist Russia. But this little change is not without a Marxist basis.  In the preface to the 1882 Russian edition of the Communist Manifesto, Marx, just before his death, writes:

   If the Russian Revolution becomes the signal for a  proletarian revolution in the West, so that both complement each other, the present Russian common ownership of land may serve as the starting point for a communist development.

And so, too, when we see things like the widening difference between the upper and lower classes, the disappearance of the middle class, big measures like deregulation of corporations little measures like the subjection of waitresses tips to the restaurant owners, one must wonder indeed if someone is not trying to cause what is avoided in fact by labor unions and stock ownership by the middle class, to make the creation of a revolutionary proletariat regardless of the theoretical ridiculousness of Marx and the resilience of political liberty.

 

II. What Marxist Communism Is

   Previously, we have written on the three secrets of the vision of Fatima and on Twentieth Century Ideological tyranny, as well as on the difference between “socialism” and Marxist communism.

   It is not even like the communism of the first Christians in the Acts of the Apostles, nor the community of goods supposed to occur among the priests, who are not supposed to have any concern for things of the body. In Plato’s Republic, there is a community of goods, and even of women and children, but this is among the very few guardians, and not at all among the majority of citizens. Nor is it at all correct to present twentieth century ideological tyranny as an error of expecting to apply some “ideal” of justice to a recalcitrant material world. Marxism is an intellectual perversion, a tyranny regardless of whether a single Stalin or a technically oligarchic politburo happens to hold power. It is much more a diabolic inversion of the imagination of the Christian West that arises out of the void in the imagination left following the fall of the medieval world. That is the true way to connect the modern tyrannies with the classical understanding of what now appears as a garden variety of tyrant. That, at any rate, is what we will try to explain in our theoretical understanding of modern communism.

 

Johnson, Paul. Modern Times, Chapter 2: The first Despotic Utopias.

Marx, Karl. The Marx-Engels Reader. Edited by Robert c. Tucker

Solzhenitsyn, Aleksandr I. The Mortal Danger: How Misconceptions about Russia Imperil America.

West, Thomas G. “Marx and Lenin.”