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Showing posts from July, 2008

Velkommen!

Jeg ser vi har noen lesere fra Norge. Jeg vet kan svært lite norsk. Dette er en Google-oversettelse n . Jeg beklager. Jeg vil prøve å lære mer, og kanskje legge på den litt. Rett min grammatikk dersom jeg gjør en feil. I see we have some readers from Norway. I know very little Norwegian. This is a google translation. I'm sorry. I'll try to learn a bit more, and maybe post in it a bit. Please correct my grammar if I make a mistake.

Gnosticism, Goethe, and the Purposes of Man

I was listening to a lecture on Goethe's Faust, and the lecturer talked about how this was a completely new (at the time) conception of the purpose of man. In most previous conceptions in literature and philosophy, the focus of existence was on being. Cogito, ergo sum, as Descartes has so famously said and many have parroted. Faust, in his deal with Mephistopheles, he agrees that the devil can have his soul if he ever once says "it is sufficient" and wants to stay at one spot with one experience forever, or has had enough of experiences. Until then, he wants to continue to have experiences, both good and evil, on and on. Faust wins the bet, because he never stops seeking after new experiences. In Faust , the focus is not on being, but doing. This is an idea that comes out of Romanticism, and which is dealt with in a number of 19th century occult orders, as well as the literature and philosophy of the time. It's no surprise that after the material advocacy of t

In the Beginning was the Point

The Gospel of John starts out: εν αρχη ην ο λογος The word λογος Logos, is usually translated as "Word", but I just found out that Logos can also be translated as "The point of a legal case". If two persons are having a dispute, the point of that dispute is indicated by the word Logos. I think it is interesting that, in the Gospel of John, the first statement tells us that Existence has a point. It is the meaning of a dispute. What dispute could it be? The eternal and temporal? The good and the evil? Is it that we live in a world with a purpose, and not a meaningless collection of random events? The full phrase could be translated "In the beginning was the point, and the point was with God, and the point was God." It kind of makes it rather doubtful that we'll ever fully understand the point, doesn't it. Yet that's what the gnostic does. We 'get the point.' We experience the Divine, reach for the Logos, trusting it's there even

Reformatting the Blog

So, what do you think? Better, or worse?

Three Great Evils

"I have no more than twenty acres of ground," he replied, "the whole of which I cultivate myself with the help of my children; and our labor keeps off from us three great evils-idleness, vice, and want." - The Turk from Candide, Chapter 30 These are definitely three great evils of the Modern World. They are not sins, really, but evils: want can be inflicted by nature as surely as man, as can vice. It's interesting that all of these evils are personal, and are all stopped with a simple prescription: Work. Work keeps away want, first of all. It also drives out idleness, if you are working at something you enjoy and not shirking your duty. Last, if you're working, you won't have time or energy for vice. The work the Turk is talking about isn't a specific occupation, it's labor with a specific outcome: When you're done laboring, you've got something of value at the end. It keeps you from want, from poverty. It is something that be