Monday, January 5, 2009

60. Latvia’s Profound vs Shallow Traditions [10]

The following series (not exactly serials) concern the importance of self-sacrifice in the creation and maintenance of a community. Do not be put off by the name "Latvia", the name of the country where I live, because you can probably replace the name with that of your own country. I believe self-sacrifice is "religion" without you or me necessarily having to believe in God.

As we see from previous blogs and will continue to note in the future, men labor hard to kill history. The reason for killing history is rather simple: it permits those on top of the pyramid of power to enrich themselves and stay in power. By killing the history of the community about them, they
1. sow incredibility, disbelief that anyone would really wish to do this; and
2. propagate dissention in the community as to who to believe, the rulers or their critics, which is the first step in the process of divide and rule.
3. sow fear.

The necessity to kill history results from murder and/or lies, which brought those in power into power.

Because of the violence that brings and maintains certain groups in power, all history so far is pseudo history or what is known as mythology. Mythology masks the abyss that is our past. As French philosopher Georges Bataille says: “…[It is] living-dying for an abyss without walls or floor ….” The Latvians, too, have their abysses. The Latvian abyss without walls or floor expands from a within that knows itself not. This results in a dying that does not know why it is happening.

Much of the death of the Latvians (and the Balts) is related to the death of Russians. Russians, too, are a people spinning in a vacuum—because they know themselves not. The myths of their rulers tell them that they are a people that lost an Empire, when in fact, they and the Balts were once a people that were part of an Empire. When the Empire of which they were a part fell, they were intimidated by sword and myth. The myth was the same as elsewhere: that a new and more effective savior had replaced the old and less effective Savior. The new savior was Jesus. The old Savior, Yan/Ionn/Ivan, was turned into a common name, thus, to be forgotten. So, the people of the fallen Empire began to fight among themselves, and while all of them lost, the Latvians lost more—relatively speaking.

Somewhere within the psyches of the Russians and Balts there still lingers a memory of the Empire that they were once part of. For an evening and a day—come midsummer solstice—the Latvians remember themselves as the Children of John, which was their name when they were part of the Empire. As for the Russians, their rulers destroyed their history by burning the records. I am using Anatoly Fomenko’s book “History: Fiction or Science” as my source here. A.I. Soulakadzev (1771-1832) was a well know collector of Russian book and chronicle collector (much of his work burned or otherwise destroyed), still called by many academics a “malicious” faker and hoaxer. Among the alleged fakes is the “Hymn to Boyan”, a song also known as a song “Boyan’s Song of the Slavs”.

As to the origin of the name “Boyan”, see (you may have to copy and google) . But among the possibilities mentioned in the encyclopedias is yet another one, re: Bo + yan (jan), where Bo = [Boga=God; Bo-lshoi=Big; Boi=heroic] + yan (John, Jānis, etc.), thus, BigJohn, or GodYan, or MightyJohn; or as Latvians might say: Lielais Jānis, Gudrais Jāhnis. We may also see that “bajahrs” (a Baltic lord) and “boyar” (a Russian lord) may derive from the same source, with “ba” being just another way of saying “bo”, but “jārs” standing for “yan/jan” as in many Latvian placenames ending in “jahn” or “ahn”, re Murjāņi, Varaklāni, etc. Interestingly enough, the name has an echo as far as Indonesia, re Bawean.

I have been tracing the nooks and crannies for the name of John/Jānis/Jan/Yan for one reason and one reason only. It is my sense that at its origin the name stood for one who sacrificed him or herself. The reason why this is so important is that self-sacrifice is the only route by which we can stop perpetual carnage, violence, and lies. In the space that turns into an abyss without walls or floor due to perpetual violence, a self-sacrifice, a man of the stature of Boyan, may instill peace.

[More to follow.]

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