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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Mon Jan 13, 2014 6:06 pm

I used the same source as Laconophile, the page Lyssa pointed out. After reading the ones you linked for a bit I decided to make them more readable on those ebook devices. Maybe they'll find more circulation that way because I think he deserves to be re-remembered.

--and the software for editing was Sigil, an epub editor.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Wed Jan 15, 2014 11:48 pm

Thanks, Anfang. I've never heard of Sigil.

If you'd like more people to find the ebooks, you can upload them to archive.org
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Thu Jan 16, 2014 2:32 am

Thanks.
I think I might just do that - maybe I'll add a few more before though. And correct some more scanning errors.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Tue Feb 25, 2014 4:54 pm

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"All that exists is just and unjust and equally justified in both." [Aeschylus, Prometheus]

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Wed Mar 12, 2014 10:55 am

A. M. Ludovici in Enemies of Women wrote:
Now modern science has wholly vindicated the pre-Socratic Greek view as against the Socratic view of man, and will have nothing to do with an arbitrary division of the human being into soul, or mind, and body.
Science now regards man as a psycho-physical unity, or a psychosome, or mind-body, and no matter what we may believe about its ultimate nature, the human organism is describable only in terms of function as 'body-mind' or 'mind-body'. This definition is generally accepted. . . . Thus there is no longer any way of distinguishing a category of human distresses or mal adjustments which is 'spiritual'. . . . and there is no sort of physical disorder without some psychological concomitant or effect."

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Wed Mar 12, 2014 5:01 pm

Ludovici in EoW wrote:
It was the old hoax of the fox that had lost its tail. But, strange to say, he got away with it and, by so doing, established for over 2,000 years the principal beliefs of the White Man concerning human nature.
The best men in Greece — men like Aristophanes — despised and ridiculed him and his doctrine. The merely conventional hated him. Hence, ultimately, he was charged with corrupting the youth of the country and perverting its faith, and he was condemned to death.
Unhappily for posterity, two of his apprentices, Xenophon and Plato, survived him. Both were taken in by his attacks on the healthy old Greek belief in the oneness of Man, and both had a scribbling and preaching mania which enabled them to transmit to the generations that followed them their master's unwholesome doctrine.
What, in fact, were the positions Socrates established? They were:—
(a) The Duality of Man, i.e. his two-sided existence. The one side being his body and the other his soul or mind.
(b) The soul's independence of the body.
(c) The soul's superiority to the body.
(d) The worthlessness and despicableness of the body.
(e) The immortality of the soul.

The standard believe system nowadays. It's underneath most believes and accepted morality, though it's usually not explicitly formulated.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Wed Mar 12, 2014 5:56 pm

Ludovici in EoW wrote:
Finally, in the Phaedo, he reaches the logical outcome of all this unwholesome sophistry — the visible in man must be despised. Gathering to his aid all his effrontery and all his hatred of the old, healthy Greek view of good looks he says:—
"If we are ever to do anything purely, we must be separated from the body . . . and thus being pure and separated from the body, we shall know the whole real essence and that is probably truth . . . For purification consists in this, in separating as much as possible the soul from the body . . . And does not holding the passions in contempt and keeping them in subjection — does not this belong to those only who must despise the body?"
Thus, not only were bodily differences between men to be held of no account (a useful view to Socrates and his like), but the whole of the bodily side of life was also to be despised.

So my interpretation and extrapolation of this part is that the soul is separated from the body and that the soul is superior - the part which matters. But which parts are from the body and what parts make up the soul? Flesh and bone are part of the body but the 'passions' seem to be part of it as well. Maybe the distinction is made between the animalistic part and the rest. What is shared with animals is part of the body and what differentiates man from the rest of the animals is put into the soul category.
Socrates also argues here that those who subject the body to discipline via reason, those who dominate the body, who control their passions, must despise their body.
Excellent bullshit artistry.

All of this can only happen in a civilized environment. Reason enables civilizations to rise and eventually it all needs to fall apart - the body demands some form of domination. If not via reason then via nature.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Sun Mar 16, 2014 5:42 am

Ludovici in The Choice of a Mate wrote:
Thus mixed breeding in random-bred stocks such as those composing the populations of modern civilized countries, has three principal results:—
(1) It may, by a stroke of pure luck, produce a new individual who is harmonious and symmetrical, with bodily parts proportionately correlated, and who is free from morbid factors, or possesses them only in innocuous, fractional proportions, or as recessives.
(2) It may, and usually does, produce an individual who is inharmonious and discordant, that is to say, who presents an asymmetrical whole, with bodily parts disproportionately correlated, and who has some morbid traits sufficiently pronounced to be displayed.
(3) And, by the same chance conjunction which produced (1) it may produce an unlucky individual, with a grave state of disharmony, showing itself in ugliness, mal-co-ordination and dysfunction, and with an acutely grave correlation of morbid factors.

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Tue Mar 18, 2014 1:37 pm

Ludovici in EoW wrote:
Thus, for over two thousand years, the Socratic doctrine has been part of our atmosphere, soaking into our blood and bones, so much so that, today, even those who have never heard of Socrates — the charwoman, the postman and the coal-heaver — all speak on these matters of man's s visible and invisible aspects as if they had sat at his feet.
Now the Feminists of all times — whether in Hellenistic Greece or in Renaissance or 17th century Europe, naturally seized with alacrity upon the arguments Socrates offered them. For, if the body was negligible, if bodily differences did not matter, if the soul alone counted, the visible or physical differences between man and woman were also negligible. Indeed, the more one behaved as if there were no difference between man and woman, the purer one was, because the less one was considering the despicable body.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Thu Mar 27, 2014 7:31 pm

Anfang wrote:
Ludovici in EoW wrote:
Thus, for over two thousand years, the Socratic doctrine has been part of our atmosphere, soaking into our blood and bones, so much so that, today, even those who have never heard of Socrates — the charwoman, the postman and the coal-heaver — all speak on these matters of man's s visible and invisible aspects as if they had sat at his feet.
Now the Feminists of all times — whether in Hellenistic Greece or in Renaissance or 17th century Europe, naturally seized with alacrity upon the arguments Socrates offered them. For, if the body was negligible, if bodily differences did not matter, if the soul alone counted, the visible or physical differences between man and woman were also negligible. Indeed, the more one behaved as if there were no difference between man and woman, the purer one was, because the less one was considering the despicable body.





Quote :
"Socrates goes still further in depreciating his daimonion. Not only does it not incite him to anything but it keeps him away from politics, the one field where he might do harm. And politics was that which as much fascinated Theages as occupied the men ivho indicted and condemned Socrates. To them he would be useless, his daimonion mere apathy; his neglect of politics assured his indifference; his lack of ambition made him negligible. If Socrates had no share in the life of the city, he ceased to count as a political factor: resolved to be inactive, he abandoned his political identity. What this abandonment means can be made clear if we look at its extreme formulation. Those who lie furthest beyond a city's influence, whose bodies fill the ranks of no army, are the dead; who form not a cipher in the calculations of statesmen, nor cast a shadow on their decrees. With the death of his body a citizen's life comes to an end: -whether his soul survives him has no political relevance. He is buried outside the city. While he lives, however, such a boundary is never crossed (certain duties ever attending him), but his approach toward it, in its political sense, became for Socrates the definition of philosojfcyj the practice of dying and being dead. From all bodily things the philosopher tries to escape: from his senses in working out his epistemology; from his passions in all his reasoning; and from the city in his way of life— 'in truth his body alone stays at home in the city, but his thought flies everywhere.' Thus is the philosopher 'dead to the world.' The separation of body and soul, then, as it honors only the soul, destroys a man's political usefulness.

The prohibition against politics compelled Socrates' retreat to privacy, where artificial necessities diminish, while the necessity of nature holds sway: where his choice of companions, obeying the dictates of his daimonion, as it rejects or approves, afforded him the greatest pleasure. And yet Philosophy, defined in this way, would seem to deny philosophy as Eros, whose existence depends on -what the practice of dying set at naught: his interest in things transcending the city would also transcend his friends. If the philosopher is ignorant of the way to the market-place, how could Socrates be a daily visitor? And if he does not know whether his neighbor is a man or some animal, how could Socrates spend so much time with the young? We had noticed before how Socrates' professing knowledge of love was misunderstood by Theages, who would not take seriously such a vile subject. It represented to him everything private and unimportant, the very opposite of a political life.

An attachment between two, who are not engaged in conspiracy but in talk, disturbs the politician no more than a single death. Beyond these attachments Socrates rarely ventured. Although he needed the city from which to recruit young men for philosophy, as he needed the city to provide food for his body, his Eros was not the vulgar Eros of political ambition, which, becoming the condottiero of all other desires, leads to tyranny.
It was not just purposeless desire, keeping him chained to the senses, but an instinctive desire which attracted him toward those who might become like himself. His instinct could not help being drawn to these, and hence to the city where they alone are found: but his daimonion pulled him and them at the same time away from the city.
Though Socrates had to descend into the city, like Orpheus into Hades, to obtain what he desired, he never looked back. Though he instructed his pupils in the ways of the city, in politics, above all else, this study was but the means employed to transcend them. Thus by a curious paradox the way to the marketplace led beyond it: his Eros shares with his daimonion its non-political character." [Benardete, The Daimonion of Socrates]


-


Quote :
"Socrates says he has always been a lover (erastes) of a way than which none is more beautiful, but which often abandons him and leaves him perplexed.i6 Socrates is a lover of philosophy; he does not and cannot philosophize at the drop of a hat, as if a philosophical question were already there and all he had to do would be to face it and handle it. Only two dialogues begin without any preliminaries with what we may call a philosophical question - they start straight off with the question, - and in both cases the interlocutor is anonymous. That the love of the good emerges as the theme of one (Hipparchus) and law is the theme of the other (Minos) seems not unrelated to their evidently philosophical character:

Socrates says that law wants to be the discovery of what is Philosophy, in any case, cannot be something that one does. There must be, then, a prephilosophical state of the lover of the philosophy from which he begins. This preliminary condition shows up in ordinary conversation, and only because of a turn within it does it begin to become dialectics. Socrates asks Cephalus in the Republic how he finds old age; and his putative concern with his own old age, as if he did not know that Athens would cut his life short, prompts this friendly but idle question. Cephallls speaks of several things, the weakness of old age, the change in desires time brings, money, the hopes and terrors of the afterlife, and justice; but one can readily see that either death or desire, no less than the love of gain, could have occasioned another kind of discussion. Now once justice becomes the question, it does not become Philosophic before the question of what justice is gets disentangled from the question what good it is:

This disengagement, however, of interest from being is merely a surface transformation: what is still pushing the discussion is interest in justice, for without such an interest any answer, no matter how defective, would be, in the face of indifference, as satisfactory as any other.'
Consequently, the occasion and the question cannot be separated even while they are being separated. what keeps them together is the philosopher's self-knowledge which essentially depends on maintaiqinga double vision: What is it? and What good is it? Eros is the name for this double vision.  

It consists in the acknowledgment that the need for separation, which makes understanding possible, and the desire for union, which would make satisfaction possible, cannot be naturally overcome. The invisible blush of Socrates marks the difference between his general awareness of the necessary incompleteness of philosophy, despite its constituting the completely human life, and his growing awareness of the partial structure of its incompleteness and his ignorance.

To have the erotic art is to have the capacity to get absorbed in the question at hand and never forget oneself. Plato's way of representing this to us is to raise the most difficult of questions while making Socrates the most vividly conceived of individuals." [Benardete, Plato and Socrates]


-



Benardete extricates from Socrates, that Philosophy starts in the Mundane, in encountering the mundane. Yet this Socrates, Benardete paints interestingly, is an Orpheus who descends down into the market-place but without ever looking back. Curiosity, the need to discover and cultivate self-same souls, to breed a type,a  temperament, and an art of doing philosophy forces him to take to the market-place; he is of necessity drawn to it - this is his Eros.
Orpheus enchants, and his music "softens" all creatures, even the heart of death, of Hades; he descends to retrieve "lost souls"...
At the same time, Socrates doesn't want to indulge in "petty" politics. He wants to talk of love, and virtue, and desire - "mundane" topics that the rulers are not interested, have no concern as long as it doesn't revolve around power. Socrates resists taking part, claiming wisdom is "I know one thing and that is I know nothing." - this is his Daimonion.

Socrates shows Eros and the Daimon are two sides of the same.

N. adopts this. Zarathustra descends/has to descend periodically from the mountains, from his seclusion to visit the market-place. His Eros, the weight of his "honey-knowledge" compels him to seek kindred souls.
Petty politics of the kings and the priests and the rulers is what makes N. say similarly, to put atleast a century or two between oneself and one's time when it comes to doing Philosophy. 6000 ft. beyond man and time...
Perspectivism is like using oars to draw and push away the currents to and from oneself as necessary; Dionysos and Apollo.

Empedocles cites Love and Strife as the two divine powers that move the world. It is because there is Eros that pulls everything together, there is Strife, and the stimulus to want to distance oneself and stand apart. They revive each other.

To put the body to death was deemed a-political.

To Socrates, this separation of the soul from the body, "free to roam", was an art of alchemy. The Philosopher's stone has the same recipe in N., when he writes against the Political of his time, to contrast free-spiritedness as supporting itself on "light ropes" and edge of abysses "away from the city", from civilization, the market-place:

Quote :
"Some have still need of metaphysics; but also the impatient longing for certainty which at present discharges itself in scientific, positivist fashion among large numbers of the people, the longing by all means to get at something stable (while on account of the warmth of the longing the establishing of the certainty is more leisurely and negligently undertaken): even this is still the longing for a hold, a support; in short, the instinct of weakness, which, while not actually creating religions, metaphysics, and convictions of all kinds, nevertheless preserves them.  In fact, around all these positivist systems there fume the vapours of a certain pessimistic gloom, something of weariness, fatalism, disillusionment, and tear of new disillusionment or else manifest animosity, ill humour, anarchic exasperation, and whatever there is of symptom or masquerade of the feeling of weakness.  Even the readiness with which our cleverest contemporaries get lost in wretched corners and alleys, for example, in Patriotism (I mean what is called chauvinisme in France and "deutsch" in Germany), or in petty aesthetic creeds in the manner of Parisian naturalisme.  (which only brings into prominence and uncovers that aspect of nature which excites simultaneously disgust and astonishment they like at present to call this aspect la verite vraie), or in Nihilism in the St Petersburg style (that is to say, in the belief in unbelief, even to martyrdom for it): this shows always and above all the need of belief, support, backbone, and buttress.  Belief is always most desired, most pressingly needed, where there is a lack of will: for the will, as the affect of command, is the distinguishing characteristic of sovereignty and power.  That is to say, the less a person knows how to command, the more urgent is his desire for that which commands, and commands sternly, a God, a prince, a caste, a physician, a confessor, a dogma, a party conscience.  From whence perhaps it could be inferred that the two world religions, Buddhism and Christianity might well have had the cause of their rise and especially of their rapid extension in an extraordinary collapse and disease of the will.

...both religions were teachers of fanaticism in times of slackness of will power, and thereby offered to innumerable persons a support, a new possibility of exercising will, an enjoyment in willing.  For in fact fanaticism is the sole "volitional strength" to which the weak and irresolute can be excited, as a sort of hypnotising of the entire sensory-intellectual system in favour of an excessive nuorishment (hypertrophy) of a single point of view and a particular feeling which then becomes dominates - the Christian calls it his faith.  When a man arrives at the fundamental conviction that he requires to be commanded he becomes "a believer". Conversely, one could conceive of a delight and power of self­ determination, afreedom of the will, in which the spirit takes leave of all faith and every wish for certainty, practised as it is in maintaining itself on light ropes and possibilities and dancing on the verge of abysses. Such a spirit would be the free spirit par excellence." [JW, 347]


The Philosophical way of life is Orphic. Shamanic.

Heavy periods of isolation and engagement sitting permanently no where;

Quote :
"Brief habits. - I love brief habits and consider them invaluable means for getting to know  many things and states down to the bottom of their sweetnesses and bitternesses; my nature is designed entirely for brief habits, even in the needs of its physical health and generally  as far as I can see at all, from the lowest to the highest. I always believe  this will give me lasting satisfaction - even brief habits have this faith of passion, this faith in eternity - and that I am to be envied for having found and recognized it, and now it nourishes me at noon and in the evening and spreads a deep contentment around itself and into me, so that I desire nothing else, without having to compare, despise, or hate. And one day its time is up; the good thing parts from me, not as something that now disgusts me but peacefully and sated with me, as I with it, and as if we ought to be grateful to each other and so shake hands to say farewell. And already the new waits at the door along with my faith - the  indestructible fool and sage! - that this new thing will be the right thing, the last right thing. This happens to me with dishes, thoughts, people, cities, poems, music, doctrines, daily schedules, and ways of living.  

Enduring habits, however, I hate, and feel as if a tyrant has come near me and the air around me is  thickening when events take a shape that seems inevitably to produce enduring habits - for instance, owing to an official position, constant relations with the same people, a permanent residence, or uniquely good health. Yes, at the very bottom of my soul I am grateful to all my misery and illnesses and whatever is imperfect in me because they provide a hundred back doors through which I can escape enduring habits. To me the most intolerable, the truly terrible, would of course would be a life entirely without habits, a life that continually demanded improvisation - that would be my exile and my Siberia. [JW, 295]

In his thoughts on Socrates in the WTP, he writes,

Quote :
"Socrates.- This reversal of taste in favor of dialectics is a great question mark. What was it that really happened? Socrates, the raturier' who accomplished it, achieved by means of it victory over a more noble taste, the taste of the nobility: the mob achieved victory with dialectics. Before Socrates, the dialectical manner was repudiated in good society; one believed it compromised one; youth was warned against it. Why this display of reasons? Why should one demonstrate? Against others one possessed authority. One commanded: that sufficed. Among one's own, inter pares, one possessed tradition, also an authority: and, finally, one "understood one another"! One simply had no place for dialectic. Besides, one mistrusted such public presentation of one's arguments. Honest things do not display their reasous in that way. There is something indecent about showing all one's cards. What can be "demonstrated" is of little worth.- The instinct of all party orators knows, moreover, that dialectics inspire mistrust, that they are very unconvincing. Nothing is easier to expunge than the effect of a dialectician.
Dialectics can only be an emergency measure. One must experience all emergency, one must be obliged to extort one's rights: otherwise one makes no use of dialectics. That is why the Jews were dialecticians, why Reynard the Fox was one, why Socrates was one. One has a merciless weapon in one's hand. One can tyrannize with it. One compromises when one conquers. One leaves it to one's victim to prove that he is not an idiot. One makes others furious and helpless, while one remains the embodiment of cool, triumphant reasonableness oneself--one deprives one's opponent's intelligence of potency.- The irony of the dialectician is a form of mob revenge: the ferocity of the oppressed finds an outlet in the cold knife-thrust of the syllogism- In Plato, as a man of over-excitable sensuality and enthusiasm, the charm of the concept had grown so strong that he involuntarily honored and deified the concept as an ideal Form. Intoxication by dialectic: as the consciousness of exercising mastery over oneself by means of it--as a tool of the will to power." [WTP, 432]

Quote :
"Shrewdness, clarity, severity and logicality as weapons against the ferocity of the drives. These must be dangerous and threaten destruction: otherwise there would be no sense in developing shrewdness to the point of making it into a tyrant. To make a tyrant of shrewdness :-but for that the drives must be tyrants. This is the problem.- In those days it was a very timely problem. Solution: The Greek philosophers rest on the same fundamental facts of inner experience as Socrates: five steps from excess, from anarchy, from intemperance - all men of decadence. They need him as a physician...
The fanaticism of its interest in "happiness" indicates the pathological nature of the hidden cause: it was a life-or-death interest. To be reasonable or perish was the alternative before which they all stood. The moralism of the Greek philosophers indicates that they felt themselves to be in danger." [WTP, 433]


Dialectics as an "emergency measure" in the face of barbaric rulers who had to enchanted with reason, turned into a permanent Ideal. This is old news.

What one has to observe is N.'s definition of "virtue"  -  as that "virtu" [force] that provides virtues as and according to what contingency demands.
What N. takes away from Socrates is how he "conquered" and "ruled" "through making compromises"  of the original noble art of never having to explain oneself.
Socratic philosophy is actually heavy-duty politics.

The body and the soul go together, and were never separated.

N. "practises" Socrates, when he defines virtue as the art of legislating as "emergency measures", the art of contigent inventions.

This is to say, N.'s Socrates was actually Heraclitean to the extent in the face of barbarism, one adapted. Despite what Socrates "taught", what Socrates "practised" was ruling by adaptation, to go with the flow.
N. was a Socratic. He restores Socrates.


Lampert does not go into such details when he explains the esoterism of 'how philosophy became socratic', but one gets the picture.

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"The history of everyday is constituted by our habits. ... How have you lived today?" [N.]

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Fri Mar 28, 2014 3:45 pm

From Socrates' dialectics and from what I read about him in Ludovici's book EoW I see him arguing for a truth which is detached from the body. Truth is arrived at via reasoning - or so it is claimed, but, is that so?
If my body cannot bear a certain truth then it will use all its reasoning capabilities to argue against it, feverishly even perhaps.
This is similar to the man who feels inferior, who can become highly motivated to achieve social status to get rid of his feelings, to numb them. It becomes a continuous terror which he is faced with, which drives him towards great accomplishments in those aereas.

Socrates' argues not only about 'mundane' things, he also argues about truth itself and how it is arrived at.
How convenient that his doctrine about the split of body and soul(reasoning) can be combined with his arguing that truth itself is arrived at via reasoning alone.

Truth is found in the soul, not in the body, following this trail.
Truth is detached from the physical realm, increasingly so.
Truth becomes THE TRUTH, and it is pandering to the lowest common denominator. The most animalistic.

I think, a realist is a realist because (s)he has the potential within the body to be or become one.
It's not about arguing. Either an idea finds fertile ground or it doesn't.

Reason gives clarity to a vision which was already there, though shrouded in fog.
In my understanding, those who argue for a soul being superior over the body and separate from it are actually putting the body above their mind, though, without being aware of it.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Fri Mar 28, 2014 6:55 pm

Ludovici in EoW wrote:
And Prof. A. E. Taylor, one of the leading authorities on Socrates, says, "Socrates created the intellectual and moral tradition by which Europe has ever since existed . . . . It was Socrates who . . . created the conception of the soul which has ever since dominated European thinking. . . . The direct influence, indeed, which has done most to make the doctrine of Socrates familiar to ourselves is that of Christianity." 2
In plain English — the philosophy of the White Man owes its origin to the efforts of a shrewd and ugly outsider, with acute inferiority feelings, to save his self-esteem.


Quote :
When, added to this testimony, we reflect that, on psychological grounds, these doctrines were most likely to emanate from such a man as Socrates, who was naturally anxious to abolish a point of view which made the visible aspects of man as important as his invisible aspects, it seems to be beyond dispute that Socrates was the first great transvaluer of values. 1
Nor is there in my claim anything psychologically inconsistent with the character and unconscious motivations of Socrates, for we fortunately possess other evidence regarding his unscrupulosity when wishing to escape from a position or a suspicion of inferiority.
Everybody knows that Socrates made an unfortunate choice when he married Xanthippe. In plain English, like many a man before and after him, his marriage was a failure. According to traditional reports, his wife would scold him and then drench him with water, and once she actually tore off his coat in the market-place in full view of the crowd. 2
Now, any ordinary man, in like circumstances, would simply have shrugged his shoulders and admitted that he had shown bad taste, had, in fact, "fallen into the soup" and must make the best of it. Not so Socrates. Where his own self-esteem was concerned, he was a genius at making the inferior appear the superior plight, and he had the astounding effrontery to try to persuade his friends that he had deliberately chosen a shrew for his moral edification. Thus he told Antisthenes that he had chosen Xanthippe so that her bad temper might make him more easily put up with all sorts and conditions of men. 3

He had also the shamelessness to try to make his acquaintances believe that, just as horsemen prefer spirited horses, because having mastered these they easily cope with the rest, so he had chosen Xanthippe. 1
More fools his friends to be taken in by such rubbish?
Yes, but it is significant that Socrates made these attempts to deceive them in order to save his self-esteem, and it lends a colourable warrant to my interpretation of the motives that actuated him in opposing and ultimately defeating the belief in the oneness of man.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Fri Mar 28, 2014 8:08 pm

Anfang wrote:
From Socrates' dialectics and from what I read about him in Ludovici's book EoW I see him arguing for a truth which is detached from the body. Truth is arrived at via reasoning - or so it is claimed, but, is that so?

I might address the rest later; for now, I just want to clarify.

I was trying to say, what Socrates taught in the books is one thing - separation of body and soul, etc.,,,, but what he practised - was not. So there's an esoteric Socrates; its not as simplistic as him *really* teaching separation of body and soul.

For eg., N. hated the petty politics of his time. He despised the Germans of his day. He brought in TSZ as a way of putting distance 6000 ft. beyond man and one's time...

He distanced himself from the "body" to "free" his "soul".
When you are too close to something, objectivity is ruined. Its only from a height, its only when a soul soars leaving behind the dredge of the body, of a gravity, of one's time that pulls and almost devours one into its petty concerns, can you afford to revive your body.
Hedonism is this over-identification with the body, with one's time, the age one lives in.
Good health requires putting to death this body.

Likewise Socrates. In the face of tyrranical and barbaric rulers interested only in speaking of power, Socrates uses his daimonion to detach himself from his time, goes a-political, but uses his Eros to "stay in touch" with the "market-place", his state, etc. Like an Orpheus, to descend into one's time, to live in one's time but without looking back, without being pulled by it.

This is one part.

Socrates teaches virtue=good=happiness, but this is a moderation, "an emergency measure" , a solution in the face of such barbaric times. He has to introduce this as a temporary measure to cultivate reason, but in the hands of the herd, it gets Idealized as a once-for-all.

This "invention" to "improvise" is what N. says was the real "virtu" of Socrates.

With it, he was able to rule.

Rule means politics. Means body and soul were never separated.

So N. understands this esoterism, and teaches the socratic virtue was just an improvisation, real virtue is in the will-to-improvise to turns circumstances into one's advantage.

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Sat Mar 29, 2014 5:57 pm

Quote -

"My principal divergence from Nietzsche arises out of my attitude to Socrates.
For the reasons stated in the chapter on The White Man's Philosophy above, I regard Socrates as the greatest transvaluer of all time, the man who, out of resentment and inferiority feelings, was responsible for the fundamental demonetization of the old healthy values regarding man, and for the successful establishment of new principles which excluded biological considerations from judgments affecting human nature, which created a new and imaginary centre of gravity in man ? the soul, and which relegated the body to an inferior and despised rank.
My view is that the moment the old healthy biological attitude towards man, which regarded his visible aspects as essential factors in forming an estimate of him, was contradicted and invalidated by Socrates, every sort of degeneracy, and of apology for degeneracy, became possible. Every sort of nobility was made difficult of achievement, if not impossible. For nobility, like every other order of rank in the human hierarchy, is inconceivable without bodily components of a certain quality. So that Socrates, at one stroke, tried to make not only health but also nobility a thing of the past.
With the denigration of the visible, the body, in short, and the exaltation of the invisible, the soul, every kind of canaille, by making certain verbal protestations and adopting certain airs, could prove its worth. For whereas a man cannot by speech improve his profile or his figure, he can by assurances and pretences about his invisible soul, secure prestige among any Socraticized group. I could not, for instance, enter a strictly hereditary peerage, except through the bodily portals of a noble woman's birth canal. But I can enter any Christian society by merely persuading those who belong to it that my invisible self conforms with their ideal of such invisible selves and holds the particular views prescribed by their society.

Now it was Socrates and those of his followers who were besotted by years of their master's debating points ? in other words, it was a none too respectable group of homosexual Greeks of the late fifth century and early fourth century B.C. , who popularized and successfully "got across" the doctrine of the supreme importance of man's invisible side and of the despicableness of the body, the flesh and the world, as compared with the high and unique value of the soul and the world of souls. And Socrates, as I have shown, led in the performance of this feat of transvaluation, owing to his resentment, or, to what Dr. Adler would have called, his inferiority feelings. For, as the ugliest man of his Age in a city of beauty, among beauty lovers, many of whom were beautiful, and all of whom believed in the equation "good-looking = good", he was at a grave disadvantage as long as the biological or bodily aspects of a man continued to be regarded as an essential factor in the estimation of his worth.

…..

Thus, in June, 1885, a little over three years before his ultimate breakdown, he wrote, but only in the form of a question: "Did wicked Socrates really corrupt Plato, and was Socrates after all really a corruptor of youth and deserved the hemlock?"
Here we see the lover of the Greeks, the classical scholar side of him, that side which had been taught to regard Socrates as a martyr to truth and to independence of judgment, still struggling with the conclusion forced on any investigator by the facts!

But there follows an even more striking passage, a passage which, although unique in the whole of the Nietzsche opus, constitutes the most complete vindication of my view of Socrates. For Nietzsche says: -
"Christianity is Platonism for the mob." 1
Thus, after all, he admits it! He sees Christianity is really Socrates for the mob, and, in saying this, gravely impugns all his previous utterances about the Jews, both as the first transvaluers of values, as fertilizers in the realm of ideas, and as the founders of Christianity."

- [Anthony M. Ludovici, Enemies of Women]

Lyssa wrote:
So N. understands this esoterism, and teaches the socratic virtue was just an improvisation, real virtue is in the will-to-improvise to turns circumstances into one's advantage.

Don't listen to what I say or what I do. Form your judgement based on the presumption that I am awesome, no matter what, and if that happens to be non-apparent then you don't understand the hidden mystique of my being.

The way of women. But since we are all women today...
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Sat Mar 29, 2014 10:08 pm

Anfang wrote:

Lyssa wrote:
So N. understands this esoterism, and teaches the socratic virtue was just an improvisation, real virtue is in the will-to-improvise to turns circumstances into one's advantage.

Don't listen to what I say or what I do. Form your judgement based on the presumption that I am awesome, no matter what, and if that happens to be non-apparent then you don't understand the hidden mystique of my being.

The way of women. But since we are all women today...


What's wrong with you? Why do you Bicker?...

Did I claim I was 'awesome no matter what' somewhere? In fact I have been saying and feeling the opposite.


I'm damn awesome.



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For those who are able to comprehend esoterism, and separate the exoteric and the esoteric, the above book is a must-read.

"Platonism is philosophy’s defense for those who attack its aspiration to rule." [Lampert, HPBS]
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Sun Mar 30, 2014 4:15 am

Lyssa wrote:
What's wrong with you? Why do you Bicker?...

Did I claim I was 'awesome no matter what' somewhere? In fact I have been saying and feeling the opposite.


I'm damn awesome.

Bickering? I'm sure an esoteric circle can be formed which doesn't find it to be a small thing at all.   cyclops 
No, I was attributing the role of the male to N-tzsche, who was enamored with ancient greek culture in a Dionysian way and thus putting a lot of him into 'her'. (See, I'm picking up bread crumbs.)

Damn, you are in awe and the some.

Quote :
For those who are able to comprehend esoterism, and separate the exoteric and the esoteric, the above book is a must-read.

There is also a scholarly work on that whole meta-subject it's called The Emperor's New Clothes.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Sun Mar 30, 2014 6:26 pm

Anfang wrote:
Lyssa wrote:
What's wrong with you? Why do you Bicker?...

Did I claim I was 'awesome no matter what' somewhere? In fact I have been saying and feeling the opposite.


I'm damn awesome.

Bickering? I'm sure an esoteric circle can be formed which doesn't find it to be a small thing at all.   cyclops 

And you may have your circle, and it would remain exoterized as long as it makes itself apparent still, as something more, to even one person. Esoteric wisdom is about possessing the keenest insight, not agreeable members.

Quote :
No, I was attributing the role of the male to N-tzsche, who was enamored with ancient greek culture in a Dionysian way and thus putting a lot of him into 'her'.

No, I get that. I was demonstrating how an open-ended sentence can let itself be misconstrued when it hid a great, a more awesomer esoterism like the one you mention - your remark on N., etc.

To identify with one's time, with one's immediate reaction instead of putting distance and reflecting on said matter is what the gross shell of platonism is.

This is what I'm saying N. derived, from Socrates, past the gross shell.

And to find oneself, one must also be Firm to lose oneself - you will be calling this 'enamoured'.
I will be calling it Firm.

Quote :
(See, I'm picking up bread crumbs.)

I was giving you cake, but if you are content with crumbs...  Wink 

Quote :
Damn, you are in awe and the some.

If it was someone else, I might have wondered if he hadn't meant I was in awww and the some, but I trust you.

Quote :
Quote :
For those who are able to comprehend esoterism, and separate the exoteric and the esoteric, the above book is a must-read.

There is also a scholarly work on that whole meta-subject it's called The Emperor's New Clothes.

Right after this line;

"How came it that Socrates was a monomaniac in regard to morality? In emergencies, "practical" philosophy steps at once to the fore. Morality and religion as chief interests are signs of an emergency." [N., WTP, 432]

Platonism, Xt., Secular Humanism, all Practical emergency measures and improvisations turned to norms.

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Mon Mar 31, 2014 5:47 pm

Lyssa wrote:
And you may have your circle, and it would remain exoterized as long as it makes itself apparent still, as something more, to even one person. Esoteric wisdom is about possessing the keenest insight, not agreeable members.

I don't have anything smart to reply to that - because I don't want to be smart right now.
But it made me think about esoteric wisdom, it made me remember that it's not about anything which can be read about.


Quote :
No, I get that. I was demonstrating how an open-ended sentence can let itself be misconstrued when it hid a great, a more awesomer esoterism like the one you mention - your remark on N., etc.

Is that so? There was quite a lot packaged in that short burst of mine.
Dionysian, from what I understand so far, has been pushed in these times to become either awesome or damn awesome - hm, could be that which you meant with that as well. If that is so then I'm not sure whether this is because this has become the era of the soul of if that's the natural way of things.

Quote :
And to find oneself, one must also be Firm to lose oneself - you will be calling this 'enamoured'.
I will be calling it Firm.

Being enamoured is one path to getting to know thy self, from what I can tell.

Quote :
I was giving you cake, but if you are content with crumbs...

Yes?
I'm not good at taking well.

Quote :
Platonism, Xt., Secular Humanism, all Practical emergency measures and improvisations turned to norms.

I think ideas become popular when the time is right, when in alignment with the place and time.
So yes.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Mon Mar 31, 2014 7:56 pm

Anfang wrote:


Is that so? There was quite a lot packaged in that short burst of mine.

Perhaps you'd care to unpack it, and unload all you can from your short burst.

I'd love to hear.

A Seer-ess could think she's seen everything, but maybe she was just a Peer-ess...
It could be more awesome than I thought.


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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Mon Mar 31, 2014 7:56 pm

Lyssa wrote:
"Socrates goes still further in depreciating his daimonion. Not only does it not incite him to anything but it keeps him away from politics, the one field where he might do harm. And politics was that which as much fascinated Theages as occupied the men ivho indicted and condemned Socrates. To them he would be useless, his daimonion mere apathy; his neglect of politics assured his indifference; his lack of ambition made him negligible. If Socrates had no share in the life of the city, he ceased to count as a political factor: resolved to be inactive, he abandoned his political identity. What this abandonment means can be made clear if we look at its extreme formulation. Those who lie furthest beyond a city's influence, whose bodies fill the ranks of no army, are the dead; who form not a cipher in the calculations of statesmen, nor cast a shadow on their decrees. With the death of his body a citizen's life comes to an end: -whether his soul survives him has no political relevance. He is buried outside the city. While he lives, however, such a boundary is never crossed (certain duties ever attending him), but his approach toward it, in its political sense, became for Socrates the definition of philosojfcyj the practice of dying and being dead. From all bodily things the philosopher tries to escape: from his senses in working out his epistemology; from his passions in all his reasoning; and from the city in his way of life— 'in truth his body alone stays at home in the city, but his thought flies everywhere.' Thus is the philosopher 'dead to the world.' The separation of body and soul, then, as it honors only the soul, destroys a man's political usefulness.



To be Visible was to be Political... to see was to touch in greek comospolitanism.


Quote :


Source:  Diogenes, Spring 2002 v49 i193 p34(14).

 Title:  The Greek view as political experience.
 Author:  Frank Kausch

For here there is no place that cannot see you. You must change your life.

Rainer Maria Rilke, Archaic Torso of Apollo.

The Greek view as tactile experience

Whether it is a question of apprehension, grasp, or simple contact, the vocabulary of perception clearly points towards the materiality of touch through what we usually think of as just a metaphorical variation. This is what ancient Greek thought recognized, or dimly felt, as a sometimes hidden constant in its history and its project: sensation, which describes the primary access to being, (1) is first of all and above all a way of  touching.
Far from indicating a simple perceptual realism, (2) this acknowledgement implies a specific idea about the presence of things in the world: touch assumes a surface, and every being, in order to appear and be seen, must therefore be entirely surface, be articulated within a boundary that  describes it perfectly.

Starting from an assumption of concordance formulated by Empedocles, then Plato (like is known by like), perceiving a body assumes organs where the  very essence of the thing perceived is discovered and unfolds. Sensation takes place when a meeting, a contact occurs between the external element and this same element as it appears to the organ. This meeting takes place in  different ways peculiar to each sense but always maps the site of this contact as a surface along which each element extends and touches its internal  counterpart.

(3) Thus, even in the case of sight where the fire that fills the eye meets the fire of the sun, the sensation proceeds by adjustment (harmonia) and contact (aphe), as Theophrastus's words, though critical, confirm: "And even if like does not adjust through penetration but only touches, it follows quite logically that sensation will occur throughout." (4) The internal fire  spreads out as far as the surface of the eye and, without going any further, gathers the light rays emanating from outside. If perception proceeds by reconstituting between organ and object a material continuity that obeys and verifies the similarity or concordance between them, each sense receives a touch effect within which no distance can dilute the co-natural character of feeling and felt, or the immanence of their coming together, since the basic element belongs to first, the second and what is intermediate.

Even though he insists on the primacy of sight, (5) Plato describes its mechanism as a veritable kind of remote touch whose seat is the eye's ray:   So when there is light all around the ray, it pours forth, like towards   like, and unites with it; a single body, similar to our own, takes shape all along the straight line coming from the eyes, whatever the direction in  which the internal fire comes up against that emanating from external   objects. Since it is open to the same impressions from one end to the  other   because of its homogeneity, regardless of the object that it makes  contact   with, or that makes contact with it, it transmits this object's movements  to the whole body even as far as the soul, and gives it the sensation we   call seeing. (6)

Being contact between the eyes' rays and the sun, whose shape they  reproduce, sight shows meeting and similarity in action through touch. Thus seeing is touching, to look is to set up a contact, in whose connection and surface reality reveals its shape in a shared relief, over which the eye travels as  it  does over skin or wall. (7) And if like is perceived by like, it is because the boundary thus defined by these opposite movements brings together  internal and external, and also establishes their respective dimensions. The intermediate space that the ray or movement crosses is therefore not a homogeneous inert medium that pre-exists the perceptual link without ever being affected by it, but a between-both, a spaced (but not spatial)  distance between two boundaries that the act of perception works to link together within the bipolarity of a single boundary. Receiving is emitting, internalizing the external and vice versa, and linking these two dimensions  in the single line where they complete each other

Perhaps the most explicit version of this theory is to be found in the extension of it given by Euclid, who states in his Optics that things are never grasped completely and instantaneously, but redrawn by the emission of rays (whose speed makes them seem continuous) coming from the eye, whose straight lines focus on different points of the object. (Cool Its shape is  thus reconstituted by the swift multiplicity of these diverging rays, each  quickly running point by point over what is recognized merely asymptotically. Here  it is at the very boundary of things -- grasped and then scanned by the  movement of the eye's rays, assembled into a beam that dynamically reproduces the  shape -- that vision takes place. It proceeds by a kind of imitation within which the object's boundary (as the surface where shape is concentrated and manifested (9)) draws the eye in a movement whose features coincide with its own, a movement which is completed in the reconstituted surface of the seen object through a trajectory that achieves resemblance again even within distance. Distance and contact are thus, as it were, the two elements  combined of a phenomenon that does not contain any suggestion of what is other or alien.

In this contact as movement we find Aristotle. When he states that "sight is the sense par excellence", (10) he does not say it is the most typical  sense, but the most precise, the sharpest one (which he clarifies elsewhere (11) by citing its power of discovery and ability to distinguish a great many differences), and that does not stop its operation making use of mechanisms that are tactile in the extreme. Indeed, between organ and object there is  an intermediary, a medium (metaxu), the diaphanous element (literally, transparent thing, the thing one can see through), one end of which receives the action of the object and transmits it to the other end, which is in contact with the organ, so establishing a link that both keeps apart and brings together, at its linked ends, external and internal, so much so that these two dimensions cancel each other out in favour of a single action,  that is, contact in distance. (12) Thus the diaphanous element distinguishes the boundary of the organ from the boundary of the object and also links them, succeeding in this way in bringing them together via their adjoining  surfaces:
"The surface is the boundary of the diaphanous element, which is contained  and limited within the body."

To say that this dynamic medium, whose movement alone gives sensation, is indispensable to sight, is also to say that the contact at work here is not  a direct touch, (14) a bringing together without remains, but a link, which first unfolds as a continuous path. The external nature of the object thus remains unaltered: there is contact in fact even when objects do not  penetrate or become part of us, and we are present for them only because we are  distinct from them. Contact in distance, distance in contact, in other words a diffracted presence carving out within itself a movement in whose action the world is projected for those who are it. Human beings are not within the  world but present at it, like a place they are passing through, where external and internal speak to each other, displaying as they do so the finite nature of this world.

This being so, what exactly is this touch, taken in isolation, as a sense
and not just as a model? What do we touch, and where? According to Aristotle, touch does indeed occur with the help of a medium, which is not external  like the diaphanous element, but internal: flesh, which is a metaxu between the body's surface and the specific organ of touch, located near the heart. So there is no place on the outside of the body that is particularly associated with touch, contact extends over its whole surface, where it finds its  unity.
Touch therefore is remarkable in that the body carries with it distance, made manifest in this medium, flesh, so perception occurs there, not only via the medium but with it. So the body is at one and the same time sensing and medium, where it is and before itself, perceiving the object and what allows it to be perceived. As it perceives the object, it also perceives itself, not as an organ (which is impossible) but as a medium, that is, in the totality of the body. For this reason perceiving and perceiving oneself are here essential to one another, in a simultaneity that is everything but reflexivity. The world is my boundary, I am the boundary of the world.
Through the presence of things in me I am present to the world, via this mutual opening called touch. But it is never a matter of true identity between  these two aspects of experience, only an identity of action: touch alone makes its terms possible and, far from pre-existing, they come into being only in the distanced contact that takes place there. Outside this touch there is no original identity. Sensation is a mutual act and a simultaneous one.

In the end, sight is a kind of touch because it occurs through physical contact with the object (via the intermediary), and touch is a kind of sight because the object is never encountered directly but always via an intermediary, in this case flesh. Since distance is essential for any perception (what is on the organ cannot be perceived), distance is needed  for touch. To the extent that it cannot exist between body and object (which are linked when one touches), this distance must therefore be somehow inside the body. So here it is a non-spatial distance, that could rather be termed a non-coincidence, a gap, a difference, (16) where the action of a movement replaces the material continuity of a ray.

The consequences of this tactile nature of presence (even in sight) imply a unique presence in the world, far from the optical register that will later come into play to actualize it. Of course, according to Plato (Republic,  508a) as well as Aristotle (particularly in Protreptica), sight plays a decisive part in access to knowledge and contemplation. However, this has nothing to  do with the idea, which is later than the Greeks, of the action of the mind as looking (intuitus), that was part of the theme of apparent or natural intelligence lumen naturale using the analogy of sight and stressing the immediacy of the relationship with the object. So if presence is like  seeing, if it calls forth its own mediation in the form of the image, the world is also reduced to the objective (and object-like) correlate of a conscious subject that brings the outside inside its specular and reflexive core and orders it in line with the outlook of its knowledge. Such a world takes on  the dimensions of the ego, whose view sees only itself, arriving, via what is simply a detour, at the initial assumption of an internal intelligence that  is its principle, archetype, and purpose. To put it in Aristotle's words, the  sun has come into the soul.

Imago mundi: the world would be like a picture (17) and displaying it would only be an addition or adjunct to a consciousness self-constituted in the immediacy of its gift, for which seeing would be the founding action. Indeed there would only be simple, direct seeing, in a non-Greek version, what is already there, already manifest being that is apparent and remaining. For a world that is already present in this way (but then by means of what that  came before it?), seeing is indeed the preferred access because it is immediate  and direct. This primacy of visibility assumes an already constituted world, arranged into unique objects already separated from their essence, (18) so that this essence is in the end accessible only beyond sight, and a noetic apprehension replaces empirical sight to give access to essence. All things considered, what can be seen if sight has to be bypassed in order to really see, and if this higher seeing can only deal with the invisible? (19) Then  is seeing as obvious as all that?

Anticipating this question, the tactile Greek view gives the apparently most paradoxical answer. Because beings in fact do not give themselves, but  appear at the same time as something in them resists (their matter, but also their very presence, where they are), because they remain in the completed  enclosure of their shape only by withdrawing their very existence, the sense that will not so much open access to them but reveal their presence will in fact be touch, the sense of surface and boundary, which encloses as much as it  opens, and conceals as much as it displays.

This is what the Greek view experiences, (20) what the experience of vision is, and so it always has to start by abandoning seeing, in the modern sense  of the word. This may explain the fact that Oedipus's experience of blindness  is the founding act for the Greek presence and its political outlook,  especially taken together with the experience of Herakles, who tested the limits of humanity on the precise site of his body, which was configured in a trial  that became the whole and model of Greece.

Therefore, if the Greek presence is to be found this side of any  constitution or foundation, if it remains at a distance whose true model is in touch, is something involved that "is produced" in this interchange, this separation  of experience? (21) Does this touch, from which the touched-touching experience comes, result in a revelation of something like a self? If there is no presence other than in and because of distance, is an identity possible? Is the "selves" of ourselves, and things themselves, capable of being grasped?
In other words, is seeing nothing but being blind?


The ontological significance of touch

If feeling receives the shape of a thing, does the thing therefore "take" shape? Should we interpret contact at work in perception as the means or mediation, at the risk of reintroducing the perspective of dialectical effectuation or process? (22) Maybe we should think instead of presence unfolding in this contact like an inscription on a horizon or boundaries, so that the topological dimension precludes any temptation to interiority or foundation. So there is neither mechanism nor alienation, but the presence (diffracted, distanced) of what is there. No going out of the sell or returning to the sell because in that presence there is not yet any self.

This fits in with the founding experience of Greek art, for there the statue displays both a model of completion and, on the level of its very surface, how to achieve it. Based on the athletic test, where the mortal (that is, the human being in its entirety displayed to the measure of its furthest limit) achieves divinity by touching their boundary at the front of the struggle, statues recover the essential feature of that test in the fully realized surface of the sculpted figure, which is open as a project and closed as an ultimate measure, a completed presence that in its features sums up the boundary of all excellence. A Greek statue is experienced by touch through what it gives off: human limits, which are nothing other than the full  extent of the world. Humans experience the statue in the same way as the fully developed mortal (having reached the extent of its wholeness, in which lies what is truly divine) experiences the world: as its ultimate contact.

This is indeed an ethical experience. I am what I am first of all in  absence, distance, and I will need the test of a limit, my own and the world's, to be truly what I am. "Become what you are by testing it out", this phrase from Pindar (Pythics, II, 71) could help to interpret Greek art: the limit the  statue displays is recognized by humans as their own, and it offers itself  in the external world as the goal of an ethical project, not an absolute ideal.
To put it another way, the true presence is indeed an imitation, not of the other whose determined otherness would refer me, through its distance, to  the effective possession of a closed uniqueness, thus not a comparison or identification, but a confrontation, in whose polemical contact identity  will never be an assumption or a result, but a movement. Human beings are  distanced from themselves, but the movement by which they bridge that gap is in fact their completed form, that they make their own only by experiencing it externally in an ethical development. Thus the fully realized human being is not closed in and self-sufficient, but moving in a movement that is neither specifically spatial nor temporal but towards (other) humans and from  (other) humans, in contact with them. Being in the midst of others, for a statue or  a person, therefore implies both a contact that makes imitation possible and a distance that makes it necessary.

The dynamic test we are dealing with here, that is not articulated around  the identity--difference pair but around the instability of a similarity, makes human beings' limits not a static edge, but a movement in the development of the sell such that the "self" is nothing other than this movement. (23) So form is not a fixed perfection that one might possess, but a frontier extending outside one, as a model or a measure, that is, more accurately a horizon (horizomai means to demarcate). And thus the imitation is twofold: the imitated is echoed in what takes up the movement, the imitator discovers itself in the end of its movement, and this symmetry produces the  possibility of a situation in the world (24) that is presence to the world, exposed to it.
In contact and distance, in limitation and movement, each being exists at  the horizon of the world.

Thus the gap that makes the world hollow locates in it, in order to fill the gap, the task of imitating, (25) which includes the issues associated with education, paideia: to educate is to recognize an incompleteness, a lack, it is to define the child's boundaries and use them to create a path. Education does not bother with eliminating a fault or reconstructing a whole that has fallen apart, but helps the person who follows it to find in it, like a  call, what they are meant to be and to relate to the world and themselves so that they are born into the excellence displayed to them by their fully realized model. To educate is thus to bring children into complete contact with what they have to measure themselves up against, whose boundary dictates the path towards conforming to it. Here there is a kind of explicit echo of what  could be called an erotics, and a desire which is indeed located in distance and lack, as Plato again states (Phaedrus, 253b): "Two friends, thus imitating  the god [a reference to Apollo] themselves, advising and disciplining their beloved, encourage him to reproduce the behaviour and the divine form as far as he can." In other words, to the extent of his limits.

Becoming oneself by imitating the other? Is this just a dialectical link, whose process in the form of destiny dictates that no beings can reach self-fulfilment except by first revealing themselves to be the other they  are, then the other they are not, a reflexive turn that establishes the depth of the complete concept? Are Greek perception, and the ethical project attached to it, only "egocentric", directed towards the construction of an ego that would only make itself strange in the other in order to take it back on the level of identity, and in the interiority that is its founding dimension (of which the Other, initial capital would in the end be just the hyperbole)? After all, the completeness indicated by going to the limit, a principle of the Greek world, could be interpreted, once the logical mechanism is laid  bare that unifies all its actions, as a still unresolved sign of a conscious, intimate totality.

To go down this road would be to forget that, if the Greeks are themselves  and other than themselves, if they are at the same time one and the other, this  is because, in accordance with the logic of the limit that defines its articulation and simultaneity, the pertinence of this structure rests  entirely on the and, which is less the revealer of a doubling, or a splitting, than  of a gap or fault, an idea of non-coincidence whose distance makes presence possible. In fact, there is only dialectical alternation (one through the other, the other through the one) once the factitiousness is eliminated that controls Greek experience: human beings are in the world, and it is against the backdrop of the world that their presence is defined, which is thus always presence to the world. Beings appear on the edge of what exceeds them, the world shows itself on the completed outline of what is separate from it.

Basically, the limit (peras) is more a transition (poros) (26) than an enclosure, which makes it capable of being crossed in both directions and  thus differentiates it from the barrier or the secret, which are characteristic  of the erection of a substantial self. And the Greek dimension is neither an outside nor an inside, but exceeding, going out of. The dialectic of the  same and the other, on the other hand, is concentricity, integration. In order to pass from that boundary to this dialectic, the intensity of a contact and  the opening it is proof of must be replaced by the extension and the appearance, even if shadowy, of an intimacy. What unfolded in the temporality of a movement needs to have become the enclosed frame around a space, and the dimension (where distancing predominates) needs to have become dimension (where measurement and identity prevail).

So that there should be opposition between oneself and the other there has  to exist an interiority, a place that has an existence only because it is  closed (introspection and will cut off), whose emergence H. Arendt says goes back  to the end of Antiquity, either to Epictetus or Augustine. (27) Although it arises from an eminently political situation (the place of the Stoics and Christians in the Empire), this secret place means that one can "be a slave  in the world and remain free", (28) that is, feel oneself to be free, in which  we can grasp the substantial circularity. A consequence, and cause, of a  retreat from the world, with no link to it other than rejection, the internal space  is first a protected place, homogeneous and enclosed, with no exposure or distance other than internal a perception. Thus it forces one to distinguish and separate the world that is foreign, other, (29) over which humans have  no power, from "the I that they can do with as they will". So this `I' enjoys a freedom that is reduced to an absence of obstacle, which, apart from the elimination of any theme of contact and action in general, completes the identification of the dimension of alterity (which also indicates the divine level) with foreignness, alienation, or transcendence, whose encroachment  one must protect oneself against behind the walls of the individual. (30) Identity, rid of all political relevance, is thus both result and weapon of  a flight away from others, away from one's fellows, into a relation of I to me in the solitude and darkness of an internal refuge, which doses the distance where the experience of the community, literally, took place. Paradoxically, the question of the same and the other, a structure belonging to Western political thought, comes from a denial of any reference to action and human factitiousness in favour of an identity that is always verified. The other,  in its unity that encloses it, thus replaces the others, in the uniqueness that exposes them. Henceforth, the only city is God's city.

On the other hand, in Greece one is only said to exist politically. Existing is not being what one is according to the closed consistency of reflexivity, but being exposed, (31) both this side of any completed presence and beyond any fixed positivity. In the end the sole indicator of this existence is the constant decentring, the reciprocal involvement of the here and its horizon, which is continually sought horizon, continually pushed back and continually conquered. The Greek body is thus immediately in the middle of the rest, the gods as well as other people, it is religious as well as political.

This body is not the opaque mass, dosed and mute, of matter or Christian flesh, which is so imbued with its own inertia that it is impenetrable, and which, precisely for that reason, must be overcome, not exceeded but eliminated. Neither is it the deep abyss of substance, betrayed in every peculiar phenomenon (the caricature of Greek beauty as ideal). It is simply the act of differentiating oneself, revealing oneself (in actions and words).

Here we touch on one of the only thoughts of the body, which is neither body and soul nor body and chattels, that is to say a non-generic corporality but one that is given up to the factitiousness (32) of always being a body, this body that exists, in a uniqueness that in fact makes a mimesis possible. The Greek body, whose tactile experience, even in the completed form of its surface, is an exposure at a distance and to something else, a difference  from itself, (33) is connected to what J. L. Nancy writes about the body: it  "comes into itself as to the outside". (34) This total exteriority, outside of any intimacy, signals the intensity of a tactile exposure. Neither silent  machine nor obtuse immanence, neither organism nor raw matter, this body, says  Nancy, is like a soul: "the soul is the outer being of a body and it is in this  outer being that it has its inside". (35) To be oneself is to be outside, without position or appropriation, site of a finiteness where there is only the opening and exposure of oneself.

If the Christian model of the body, a radical alterity of the flesh and its weight, supplied the matrix for a politics based in alterity, the Greek body (a separated boundary joined to world) created the frontier of a community.
Indeed, the Greek man is never alone, neither in the ascetic's desert  solitude nor the artist's sublime isolation: what he is coincides with what one sees and touches of him, he is always present already to people.

Man stands against a backdrop of men, he is wholly political. He is a political animal says Aristotle, because he alone "has the sense of good and evil, just and unjust, and other moral concepts, and it is the shared nature of these feelings that brings into being the family and the city". (36) The Greek man is equal to his position in the world (not simply within the  world, in a strictly geometric way), and so the city is the individual's boundary in the full meaning of the word. There he is always exposed already; before he has a same, before he has an other.

But then, if "the city naturally comes before the individual", (37) if the city is always there already, if people are already there before the individual is a community still possible that can be the site of a free connection and not the accomplishment of an assumption, not an almost mechanical necessity? Is the community still the site of the uncertainty,  the contingency, that are the mark of human praxis, or does its exposure to legality or political organization reincorporate human finiteness within a logocentric constitution? Does practice in common not risk becoming common practice, far removed from the contingent nature of its origins. Does a community still allow that openness to the accidental, as a mark of our finite human situation in "a world that it opens to itself", (38) that practice  must fully display? In other words, is it a mimesis of the community? Where are  the others if we cannot see them?

Community of equals or undifferentiated community?

Thus the Greek has a view of himself that is not his very own, and he does so straight-away. Located in the midst of others, he has no existence except through his action, by which he is liberated. Action, which is co-extensive with the context that he is in and that makes action possible, describes on its edges both an originating community, pre existing and shared, and a  target community where a uniqueness that has finally been achieved and recognized  is displayed.

Aristotle's analyses do suggest that this action in the world is a sense relation to it made explicit. Although, compared with the intellect, sensation inherits from its object, the sublunary contingent being, a lesser dignity that separates it from any understanding of principles and causes, (39) although its powers of discrimination tie it to an antepredicative approach  to the specific, it establishes a kind of "knowledge" that means we can  orientate ourselves in action, calculate means with a view to ends. Since what has to  be done is always specific, practical knowledge that determines awareness of it must assess the situation, and to this end grasp the specific facts and plan relative to an action, just as, in order to hit his target, the archer must locate by eye the precise point he is aiming at. (40) What comes out in  action has no normative regime, but assumes the exercise of a virtue, without rule  or promise, for "it is in each individual being that the telos is realized, in accordance with the degree of fulfillment it carries". (41) If the Greek ethic is indeed the search for what is appropriate at every moment, it assumes that what it should be appropriate for is taken into account, which assumes a distance with respect to immediate realization or enjoyment. Thus the  reasons for a choice are offered to those who project themselves, from the  conditions of an action to the "going beyond" that gives it its value. This gap, in  which Aristotle places the notion of caution, between the useful thing and its usefulness (which lies in a precise practical situation and not in an  eternal essence) frees the space for a practical preoccupation and knowledge, with  the charge of revealing what is useful for all, that is, what is just.  

Usefulness, in the sense of appropriateness but also beauty, occurs in a shared way, in such a way, however, that its knowledge and experience are incumbent on  every individual, and that each individual knows himself by deliberating with the other. "The case of others is a practical problem", (42) and politics always is a concrete way of acting in the present, the indissoluble reality of the Greek existence that only exists exposed to the community. The Greek ethos is political if by politics we mean not a defined field but the irreducible dimension of what creates the community as a participant in every action. Furthermore, as Aristotle specifies, action (praxis) is differentiated from production (poiesis): it is a doing that does not lead to the making of an external object, but its activity remains immanent. In acting, it is myself that I produce and give form to, that I must complete, and I do so in front  of everyone, so that it is my action that reveals the world as a place where  one may act, whereas a theoretical view could not.

However, this demand for perfection and fulfillment can transform a  completed, determined, contingent act into an immortal gesture whose trace and imperishable glory will be a yardstick of excellence for the community that recognizes and repeats it as a frontier to imitate. The heroic destiny through which mortals enter into the immortality that is theirs is not experience of the eternal in the solitude of contemplation, (43) but a decisive complete test, which is often fatal, whose accomplishment involves not only establishing the victorious boundary of what is human, but shining forth in the brilliance of the statue or glorious words. Excellence is only what it is through the presence of others, who recognize themselves laid bare in it,  and it is only here that it achieves immortality in the midst of a shared world:
"With regard to human matters, human beings should not be considered as they are, nor should what is mortal be considered in mortal things, but they  should be envisaged only to the extent that they have the potential to  immortalize."

Human beings are the act they accomplish, but this act only has meaning when it is immediately projected towards others, towards the future. Neither introspection nor reflection, but a kind of extroversion where the community acts, not like mirror but like that against which one must measure oneself without either object or mediation resulting from it. To exist is to project oneself and to see oneself as project. (45) In this respect even isolation only has meaning in relation to others and the rest of the world, that is, that part of it that is irreducible. It is the same with shame or pride: to  be ashamed is to wish to be elsewhere, to be proud is to enjoy being here, in front of everyone and with them looking on.

And so Greek politics requires people to think the community without articulating it as identity--difference, same--other, but in the exercise of the place where these oppositions are merely possible. A total unity, essential or recapitulative, would have no meaning here: the equality of the ancient world creates a belonging only to receive the gesture of differentiating oneself from it, "constantly showing by one's actions that  one is the best". (46) On the other hand, a radical alterity would not even be noticed, it would have no existence, (47) and what is strictly private, cut off, inaccessible, is merely a deprivation, and as such impossible to make manifest. In fact the other is neither a set of things nor an infinite  single thing, but a dimension, or something to pass through that is not the
property of anyone. The Greek community is a fluctuating, open community, continually outside itself and exposed to its limit, which is always new, both constant and unassignable, in a word, its horizon.

The community is a place, with no parousia or symbolic resolution, which possesses an entire presence, in that to participate in it in this way is to make room for all the rest. Thus the community does not contain individuals, for they are not an assignable space, but it reveals itself in them at the same time as it reveals them. So it is a shared place. The community is at every moment here and it is at every moment now.

And so it is animated by a twofold movement. First it is through the  reduction of the world down to the line of a specific situation that it reveals itself in all its fullness. Whence the concept of combat as the supreme form of the being as a human ensemble, a contact and confrontation where everyone  appears as he truly is. (48) And secondly the extension of every specific situation to the whole world, which means turning it into a model. Hence a public and political space that is a gathering of all and the consideration, in the experience of their difference in discussion and deliberation, of all things in all the aspects under which they may appear: in this way things are "brought under the spotlight of public space, where they are, so to speak, forced to reveal all their aspects".

(49) Which assumes and brings about a freedom of discernment and movement, to put oneself in anyone else's shoes.
It is only in the polis that freedom exists, in "the intermediate space that is created from where a number of people are together and that can last only as long as they remain together". (50) The world is here and now, a situation  for which the community is the opening and the potential. To be fully human is to be part of the sharing, which is happening at every moment, replayed at  every moment, in a founding being-ensemble.

It is thus not in the least surprising that this finished community, the  site of an impossible unity and an unavoidable sharing, should be the opposite of any representation of politics as a body. There is no Greek body politic (as rational vertical organization with dependent parts and hierarchies,  designed according to a transcendent principle), because in Greece the body itself is already political. This is also why questions of participation, commitment, tolerance, sacrifice, (51) only come into politics where the Greek model has already been put at a distance, which is the case with the Roman world.
Belonging to the community is not the individual's choice, it is not his affair, but is always already decided, and decided by virtue indeed of the bond that it determines. So the community has no end (aim or finish)  precisely because it is finished and exists only as the sharing of what can never be revealed as a unity. The finite nature of humans is thus neither a solitude nor an exile outside others, it is to do with the fact that there is no  human except face to face with another human, against the backdrop of the home community.

All in all, this community has no place since it is only a boundary or the sharing of a place. There is no place that is common, only the community of  a place that is simply diffraction and distancing within exchange. No common being (as essence or assumption) but being in common. (52) No organization  but an articulation. No real whole similar to the one that would be described in terms of inclusion or exclusion, assimilation or rejection, but an ensemble that is merely "the opening of particularities, the tracing and beating of their boundaries", (53) that is therefore simply the distancing of the particular by the community and vice versa.

Recognized human excellence, whose boundary is to be striven for, does not establish any positive, definitive human essence at its extreme limit, but  the simple revelation of a limit that only has meaning when it is repeated in  and by human beings in the particularity of their finite nature, in the  finiteness of their being-together. In this community there is no exhibition or dialectization of a difference: the community does not differentiate (among individuals, groups, classes, etc.) but differentiates itself, is only the diffraction of its unity. What it is, what the individual is within it, is  an event not an essence. (54)

And so in this rejection of immanence in fact lies the sense of community, its perceptible sense. It is therefore not in a unity of nature or end that  humans exist, nor in an undifferentiated juxtaposition, nor in the pure within of sacred fusion or the pure without of commercial atomization, but at one and the same time within and without, at the limit, "in common without ever being common", (55) in a sharing that is both dividing and distribution?

This understanding of the community indicates how full is the Greek notion of feeling, sight, of an extremely modern political meaning that extends indeed beyond the narrow face it has historically been given and redraws a  forgotten usage. If sight is in fact the supreme touch, and if touch is contact at a distance, the relationship between the individual and the world around, the world of things or the world of people, will be the site of both a primal closeness and a distance that runs through it.

Starting from this gap that defines the situation of the individual, the Greeks thought political existence both as a fact and as an act: what I am only has meaning in the midst of others, what they are only has meaning if everyone sees it and relates to it. Practical wisdom, how to act well in politics by putting oneself in the other person's shoes, as if one were someone else, is thus  the opposite of any closed alterity and also the abstract fusion of a  commandment that would say: thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. So the connection with others is not based on love (or hate), a connection of self with self, but on action, a connection of other with other, where the community is both the starting point and the final truth behind everything the individual undertakes. There are two opposing routes here: in thought about alterity  one starts out from oneself towards the other before coming back to the self  that in this movement has conquered its identity, its "myself". In the community whose laws the Greeks developed, one starts with others, from whom one is differentiated, before coming back to receive one's definitive face. But  since this movement is precisely simultaneous, there is no source or beginning: in the Greek sense of the word, the world has always been there and always will be. And so have we really exhausted Greece?


Frank Kausch
Paris
Translated from the French by Jean Burrell

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Tue Apr 01, 2014 5:00 pm

Lyssa wrote:
Perhaps you'd care to unpack it, and unload all you can from your short burst.

Nope.
But thank you for the invitation.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Wed Apr 02, 2014 5:37 pm

Anfang wrote:
Lyssa wrote:
Perhaps you'd care to unpack it, and unload all you can from your short burst.

Nope.
But thank you for the invitation.


You are welcome to your mystique.  Wink 

Anfang wrote:


There was quite a lot packaged in that short burst of mine.

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Thu Apr 03, 2014 4:23 pm

That passive-aggressive mocking disgusts me.
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Thu Apr 03, 2014 6:19 pm

How is it passive when I'm saying it as I see it?

When someone insinuates there is more to what they said inviting an invitation, but then they choose not to say it after making a claim and behaving all mysterious,,, it also shows what's bad about esoterism, not the person per se.

There's a bad esoterism that pretends to be something more than what it is - and half the gnostic doctrines and religions have seduced the world this way.

I find that kind of coyness and seduction utterly disgusting.

If I use a circumstance to signal a larger point, and if every intellectual marking out is going to be taken emotionally, then that is a

whatever.

And that includes my Not taking your present statement emotionally either.

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Fri Apr 04, 2014 5:19 am

Lyssa wrote:
When someone insinuates there is more to what they said inviting an invitation, but then they choose not to say it after making a claim and behaving all mysterious,,, it also shows what's bad about esoterism, not the person per se.

It was a reference to my accumulated anger fermenting into disgust.
But I see no way how to get out of that swamp of poisonous rhetoric with you.

Quote :
I find that kind of coyness and seduction utterly disgusting.

Oh, I'm disgusted with it as well. Think of it like an emergency measure. I'm not advocating for anybody to adopt it.
It's rooted in the emotion of anger.

And it's not coyness or seduction.

I'll try to explain it.
You shitting in my face makes me angry.
If you shit in my face in a subtle way and I don't want to play your petty game and yet you still keep shitting in my face then there comes a point where you have angered me enough.

Quote :
How is it passive when I'm saying it as I see it?

This is an example. Is "You are welcome to your mystique. Wink " passive-aggression? Is it straight forward aggression? It's whatever you want to read into it. Whatever suits you. It's not straightforward and direct.

What's wrong with You?
Nothing is wrong - you are who you are.

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Fri Apr 04, 2014 7:56 am

Anfang wrote:
It was a reference to my accumulated anger fermenting into disgust.

It could have been a reference to anything when you make open-ended statements like you did; you only say the above now.

Fact Remains, that kind of esoterism is misleading; 'it' is repulsive.

The rest is dialectic and I'm sure you can come up with more clever emergency measures but, it cannot change the fact that such a fact occured.

My critique stands.


To reply coyness with coyness is not passive-aggressive mockery, it is called being polite and courteous, to be willing to engage the other in the same language.

I hate pointless bickering, you can have the last say.

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Mon Apr 28, 2014 3:06 am

Lyssa wrote:
To reply coyness with coyness is not passive-aggressive mockery, it is called being polite and courteous, to be willing to engage the other in the same language.

How something is being said is often difficult to pack into words. I'd have to be my own narrator and that would require me to be detached and attached at the same time. In a way in which the detached part doesn't take away from the moment.

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Tue Apr 29, 2014 8:44 am

Ludovici in EoW wrote:
Just as our basic philosophy derives from Greece, so does the strong masculine accent over our civilisation which, of itself, would have sufficed to create Feminism.
The Greeks had probably been homosexuals for a very long period in their history, but were certainly ardent homosexuals and shameless defenders of it at the time when their influence over the White Man's philosophy began to spread across Europe.
It cannot be too emphatically stated, therefore, that our leading principles in regard to humanity are all derived from a people who were, from the standpoint of English Law, criminals, with whom no self-respecting modern European would have wished to associate.
Not only did the Greeks of the Socratic era disbelieve in any passionate relationship to woman, but they also hardly thought it possible. In plain English, women stimulated them less than men. For the really stirring emotions of deep love, the Greek of the 5th century B.C. and later turned only towards his own sex.

This is from chapter 2, 'The influence of the masculine accent over our Civilization' (and its role in creating feminism).

Quote :
But, as a consequence of this, male characteristics were imparted to females to make them more attractive. Thus, as I have shown with some detail elsewhere, the leg-torso ratio of the female both in statues and in vase paintings, grew to be ever more and more that of the male. Indeed, the whole of Greek plastic art, reveals a gradual increase in the length of the female leg relative to the torso, and a modification of the female form to approximate to that of the male.
Insensibly, the male standard of bodily beauty became more or less the only standard. There was no such thing as a beauty of female form that had a quality of its own.
Given the homosexual bias, this absurdity was at least comprehensible. But, without it, the absurdity becomes gratuitous, because no argument based on aesthetics, the laws of proportion, or any other reasoning, can make male beauty the norm of human beauty.
As well argue that red is more aesthetic than blue, or that a church is more beautiful than a castle, as claim that the male form is superior to the female. Each has its peculiar beauty. To begin to compare them and, on any grounds whatsoever, claim that one excels the other, is at once to be launched on a sea of nonsense.

Quote :
Especially in Protestant countries, therefore, which have always been most subject to the influence of Socrates and the worst in Greece, there arose a tendency to exalt the "boyish" figure in women, and insensibly to accept a masculine accent over every aspect of civilisation.
By leading us into the error of favouring women with "boyish" figures, however, it has encouraged the multiplication of a female type - narrow-hipped, long legged and generally masculinoid - which has inclined us ever more and more towards a Feministic or virago civilisation, especially favourable to masculine women. But, more important still, by placing a masculine accent over our civilisation, it has tended to render wholly feminine things of little interest, of little dignity, and little value.

Protestants - at home in Anglo-Saxon countries, coming up after them having been destroyed in 1066 A.D.
Also the dominant Christian branch in China, a country whose population has been subjugated for a long time as well.

Poisoned body.
Maybe materialism is the compensation for it.

Quote :
Can it be wondered at that the gratuitous masculine accent implied in these judgments infected the attitude of the general population including, of course, women?
Besides inducing those women who could boast of any taste to wish to resemble men in form, it necessarily gave them a bias against all things feminine. It established what I have elsewhere termed a "monomorphic" view of the sexes, and it was in accordance with this monomorphic view that all questions relating to the sexes soon came to be judged. That is to say, this masculine accent, by urging women to favour everything that was stamped with the hall mark of maleness, whether in the realm of habits, occupations or looks, reinforced the claim to sex-equality already based on Socratic teaching.
Was a particular practice, or habit, or pastime, suitable for men? If this question could be answered in the affirmative, then it was assumed that these things were also suitable for women.
In this way, the Greek masculine bias spread to every department of our lives.  
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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Wed Feb 04, 2015 4:42 pm

On honoring the parents -

Ludovici in Choice of a Mate wrote:
The same remarks apply to the Mosaic "Honour thy father and thy mother!" The proper command would have been: "Parents, make yourselves honourable in the sight of your children!"
Even as a child I knew that any honour I paid to my parents was purely reactive. Thus very early I appreciated the fact that in supposing love and honour to be voluntary, the Christian saviour and his putative father had gone astray. Evidently psychological insight is not a strong point with the holy family.
I was not surprised, therefore, when later on I found further errors in Christian psychology.
I take it that all intellectually honest persons know that in everything they do, they act either under compulsion, from inclination, or from self-interest. There is no such thing as a consistent course of so-called "unselfish" conduct that is not pursued for some kind of self-gratification. Charity is the most transparent of these.

On being selfish and unselfish -

Ludovici wrote:
Everybody, therefore, is consistently "selfish". The wise, however, are "enlightened egoists", i.e. they are "selfish" only up to the point when self ceases to be best served by "selfishness", as, for instance, in their relationship to immediate dependents who can minister to their happiness, in their relationship to menials, retainers, and friends, all of whom may make life happy or the reverse, for a central figure. And the unwise are "unenlightened egoists", i.e. they carry "selfishness" to a point which turns their environment against them, so that, in the end, "self" gets badly served and is made unhappy as the result of "selfishness".
The mistake is to suppose that the "enlightened egoist" is "unselfish", and that the "unenlightened egoist" is "selfish". Both are "selfish" — if the word has any meaning at all, but whereas the former is so with intelligence, the latter is so as a dolt and dullard.


So what does being selfish and unselfish actually mean?


Ludovici wrote:
Truth to tell, however, it is life's chief charm and beauty that the acts which constitute the greatest benefit to all — the work of the good artist, the good legislator, the good actor, the good inventor — are unquestionably "selfish". They please the performer before the beneficiary.
Beside them, the acts of the officious spinster, who bustles interferingly about her parish, killing time by trying to stamp her importance on the minds of her neighbours, are wholly fatuous; yet these are called "unselfish".
This disposes of the antithesis. Now let us examine certain particular aspects of it.
In the home "selfish" means merely not doing what the person who uses the word wishes you to do, and "unselfish" means doing that same thing. Women are the chief abusers of these terms, and when they are dealing with a man who believes that "selfish" and "unselfish" mean something more than I have stated, they usually get their own way.
In the religious sense "selfish" means that you do not covet the Church's approval of how you live or the way you spend your money, i.e. that you regard yourself as the best judge of how your power should be exercised.
In the social sense, "selfish" means that you are not constantly fretting about what your neighbour thinks of you, or trying to seduce him to a good opinion of you. This offends the neighbour. If he is middle-class, the worst insult he will hurl at you is to call you "selfish". Because, unconsciously, what the neighbour likes best is the "vain" person who does worry about what others think of him. Such a man is not "selfish".
The terms are thus a sort of impolite sham, based on unsound psychology, and bear no relation to reality.
The beauty of Life and Nature is that all the most useful, vital, and important actions are so-called "selfish" actions. A so-called "unselfish" action (if it were possible at all) could not be relied on; because what ensures the punctual performance of the "selfish" act is that the performer wishes to perform it, and to take risks to perform it. Schopenhauer was shrewd enough to see this.

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PostSubject: Re: Anthony Ludovici Thu Feb 26, 2015 5:11 pm

How the choice of a mate works in nature.

Ludovici in Choice of a Mate wrote:
A more disturbing example of aberrant sexual choice is given by Rémy de Gourmont, who states that the male rabbit often pursues female hares and wears them out with his libidinous fury, though he knows of no fertilizations from such matings. Truth to tell, such crosses have been successful, though the first cross, according to Darwin, proved difficult.
Nevertheless, generally speaking, it is true to say that there is a regular proportion between sexual attraction and zoological affinity, i.e. that like attracts like, and that among the reasons for species keeping to themselves are, (a) fear of the unfamiliar, (b) morphological disparities which often make sexual congress, not to mention fertilization, impossible, and (c) the tendency of species to segregate.

In animals and man in a state of nature, therefore, and often even in civilized man, free choice or random mating can hardly go wrong because (a) the environment presents no aberrant types for selection, or very few; and if it does, (b) there are primary or secondary instincts in the chooser, which cause aberrant types to be rejected.

Now, we know that human beings need a certain mutual attraction to stimulate reactions favourable to successful sexual congress. This is also true of some animals. It might seem, therefore, that where freedom of choice is denied, or is inoperative owing to extreme standardization, this necessary factor for fruitful mating would be absent.
But in conditions of extreme standardization, the girls and men who are confronted for mating can hardly fail to see in each other their racial, æsthetic and psychological affinity, and to love accordingly. And this is bound to be so, because sexual love is more subjective than many imagine.
When both sexes possess normally strong genetic instincts, each has a subjective desire impelling him or her to the other, which disposes one in favour of the other, irrespective of the latter's individual peculiarities (always faint in a standardized community). Thus the personal charm of the sex-object is so much reinforced by the subjective pressure in the prospective mate, that we must imagine sexual attraction and love, not as one stationary thing drawing to itself another by sheer force, but as two objects converging on each other under their own steam, as it were, and on lines or metals already laid down by Nature.
Only a very vain or inexperienced man imagines, if a normal nubile young woman "falls in love" with him, that it is due wholly to his personal attraction, and only a very vain or inexperienced young woman imagines that the attraction is all the other way round. In each case the sexual object is only the stimulus on which a latent force unloads itself.
Propinquity is the circumstance which releases the longing for sexual attachment in each case, plus the fact that at the time one happens to be the sexual object willing to respond.


…more like illusion of choice…



Ludovici wrote:
The large proportion of marriages occurring between people of the same locality, or street, proves not that such people, in our modern world at least, possess the greatest affinity, but simply that, ceteris paribus, all that healthy, vigorous beings require is a suitable stimulus to release their latent desire for attachment, irrespective of the power of attraction.

Thus marked satisfaction over having been fallen in love with is almost always exaggerated except in a person of obviously inferior parts. A man beneath a waterfall might as well flatter himself that he is attracting the downpour, or Victoria Station might as well fancy that it is attracting the trains from Brighton. Gross exaggeration of the attractive power of the sexual object is equally unsound. A train from Brighton might as well rhapsodize about the irresistible attraction of Victoria Station.
Of course, this applies chiefly to people of normal health and appearance. If, however, a decline in genetic power overtakes a people, a more critical choice becomes customary, because coldness requires unusual stimulation.
From the outset, therefore, it is as well to be clear about the fact that, even where free choice is exercised, in the best or worst circumstances, the critical or discriminating faculty exercises a much smaller influence than both parties fondly imagine. And this should be made known to healthy young people. For by discounting the native impulse to the sexual object, and the latter's native impulse to oneself, the precise degree of its attraction, and of one's own attractiveness can be more calmly estimated.

…how could a liberal society not produce self-delusion en masse, it's the very foundation of its beliefs, the 'free-will' taken literally…
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