19 The Mother of Terror
19 The Mother of Terror
As I wrote in the preceding blog, synthetic or man-made law may conflict with natural law, the latter also known as “the state of nature”. The question this poses is why do human beings create laws that conflict with nature?
The answer lies in the nature of human consciousness.
It is beyond the scope of these blogs to discuss reasons of how human consciousness developed, but the dream and story mentioned in the preceding entry indicate to us that our unconscious is aware of manipulation of consciousness that contradict laws of nature and reacts to it with critical intelligence. Assuming this to be true, what is it that causes us to want to manipulate consciousness contra naturam?
The short answer is death. Human consciousness enables us to be aware of death every waking hour. While animals, such as elephants, are aware of death (they sometimes fondle the bones of their forebears if they happen to pass them), human consciousness comes endowed with a capacity for memory of such degree that once it encounters death, it is remembered for the rest of the individual’s life.
The presence of death in our memory results in two sub-branches of emotive consciousness: anxiety and a desire to mitigate it. Because anxiety and the desire to mitigate it become a movement, a state of inertia if you will, of consciousness, consciousness next moves to a forked crossroad. The road to the left goes in search of immortality; the one to the right leads to >1) a natural community, i.e., a family of a mother with her children; >2) an attempt to form a greater-than-life community; >3) said community recognizing that its ties are sourced in death.
The first greater-than-life community was a temple community.
The temple community is the result of those most conscious and troubled by death banding together as if for mutual protection. In the process, the community discovers mitigating relief not only for what troubles its individual members, but other benefits. One such benefit is greater protection for the group’s members such as the very existence of a group offers; another is an increased ability to accomplish a common task, said task best expressing itself in the building a community temple. This is the path by which in due course humankind arrived at the city, from whence society.
Sometime during its development, the temple community experienced a coup d’etad. The coup brought to power a group willing to substitute death as a phenomenon of nature with death as caused by man. The oversimplification of Darwin’s evolutionary theory into a statement such as “survival of the fittest” is a consequence of a community created by and maintained through violence. Most people who cite the cliché give little thought that they are justifying death caused by fellow man. Such response to violent activity indicates that violence has become an internalized part of social structure, and an exponential quickening of death will be no surprise to such a society.
Of course, the temple community fought back.
While there are no records of how the temple community resisted violence, one may surmise it involved heightening the public’s awareness of the significance of death. If, in the first instance, a not-violent community came together because of anxiety over death, hence this becomes reason for arguing that the conscious mind is fully mature only when it comes to accept death as a conscious act. One may think of this as the first theological argument.
In a community that perceives a mature consciousness as being able to meet death consciously, the community’s elders may make a conscious rendezvous with death when their body has come to a stage that the elder believes to be the approximate time for natural death. The medieval arch-Christian Cathars of Languedoc, France—probably reflecting a wide spread practice of their day—then called for “consolamentum” (consolation) and thereafter stopped eating. Fasts, common in the Middle Ages and still sometimes practiced during Lent by neo-Christians today, are remains of a practice by the entire community of how to prepare for and meet death.
The violent princes in power reacted to such resistance to their violence with increased violence. If the Russian mathematician-topologist-historian Anatoly Fomenko is correct in dating the death of Jesus (before his renaming Basil and/or John) to 1084 or 1184, this is about the time when the practice of killing the opposition as a solution to all problems settles into habit. At the same time, the rights of the individual to his-her own death (these rights given by nature) are forbidden in the name of a God removed from Earth. These are the years when the bogomil leader Basil was burnt in Constantinople. To eventuate his forgetting, the violent ones took certain features from the story of Basil and used them in their newly created story of Jesus. The year 1204 saw the Crusade against Constantinople (under the pretense of revenging the killing of Basil-John-Jesus by the Byzantine emperor Alexis I) and its sacking. The sacking of Constantinople by the neo-Christians removed the city from the map as a geopolitical power, at the same time as it effectively dismissed arch-Christianity as a story that never happened.
The ambiguous theology that justified violence (re: “just war”), took the next two hundred years or so to create. The violent princes understood that naked violence alone could not be justified. They needed the support of a theology that differed from that of the arch-Christians by being ambiguous. The new theology had to pay lip service to love, peace and community, at the same time as it prevented a reawakening of the arch-Christian theology, the theology that enabled love and peace to prevail.
Sometime during the next two hundred years [the ones that followed 1084 (or 1184)], the violent princes decided to rename John as Jesus and removed him from Earth to Heaven. They did so by redirecting theological thought to the left (the direction mentioned at the beginning of this blog), the direction that goes in search of immortality.
If up to then the search for immortality had proven futile (the Sumerian king Gilgamesh, for example, is said to have discovered the plant of immortality, only to have a snake steal it from him), the neo-Christians gave the story a new twist. In the neo-Christian version, Gilgamesh (Jesus) rises miraculously out of the grave, right past our eyes as it were, into heaven. Once in heaven, Jesus-John is beyond our reach, and he cannot reach us. To make sure this version of the story prevails, the arch-Christian Johns are replaced with priests who know no other version of history than the one taught to them in seminaries supported by the princes. Doubters of the new story are tortured, but stubborn doubters are killed in a fashion similar the way Basil was.
Looking back, we must—shocked as we may be—admire the minds that created such a violence-bolstered variant of the story of immortality. Indeed, the story has been so successful that humankind has not only brought itself to the edge of the abyss, but has stepped over its edge with expectations of recovery.