Alexis Jacobi wrote: ↑Thu Jan 27, 2022 2:46 pm If I say that people have lost the capability of understanding themselves, and their cultural matrix, and thus of Christian culture (which is so much a part of the whole), it is to try to speak about people who have been, as a result, separated from themselves.
I can assert, and I think beyond all doubt, that *it* is still and will always be ‘applicable’ to them. The issue for us all is in defining what ‘it’ is. My view is substantially different from IC’s view (for example) and my view is also deeply problematic and controversial. Why? Because I am researching in those areas in which culture, race, language, origin and self-definition (both real and mythic) converge and are debated.Lacewing wrote: ↑Thu Jan 27, 2022 6:11 pm
Have they lost it, or is it no longer useful/applicable to them?
Have people (in general) ever understood themselves very well? Hasn't self-reflection always been a practice of a minority?
And to say that they have been 'separated from themselves' is a big presumptive stretch. It suggests that you know what they are/aren't and what they should be. It doesn't allow for humankind to shift or waver or redirect without 'losing themselves'. So perhaps the problem with your thesis is that it is not as flexible as humankind and nature actually are.
Maybe Christianity is losing the immense hold it has had in the past because more people are becoming more self-directed and recognizing more paths/methods/options. Whether the fallout will be difficult from disengaging conventions of belief from everything they have been entwined into, I don't know. But in the long run, humankind seems intent on evolving beyond the beliefs that limit it. You don't seem to give humankind much credit. You conclude that those of us unlike you have lost ourselves, rather than recognizing that it makes more sense that the limits of your beliefs limit your understanding of what is naturally taking place.
What I said to you previously applies even more here: the more that you and I pay attention to the conflicts that have risen to the surface today, now, and the more these are examined and plunged, the more that you yourself (were you to do this) would realize how important all these topics are. And you would (this is another assertion of mine) also see with greater clarity how you are deeply involved in those conflicts and problems and the degree to which they inform you.
That is why I say that *when you speak* it is not just you, or put another way it is far more than just you.
People have not ‘understood themselves’. And you and I (and all participating here) do not enough understand ourselves. And how would you define what the process of *understanding oneself* entails? I will admit that it is not a task for everyone. But that leads to the observation that most people, therefore, live in a state of not-knowing. That is what I refer to as ignorance and also as nescience. If this is true what I say then it leads to another more troubling proposition: if I do not know who I am, if I do not know what has *informed* me, then in a tangible sense I am not really a free agent. I lack the power to define myself and also the task or the duty to define myself must then be left up to others. If this is so then I become a ‘field’ that is fought over. Who then has the power to define me? And then: Who or what will I serve as a result of having a defective sovereignty?
Self-reflection, in the sense you use the word, has indeed been a minority project. And that is why those who do that become, necessarily, authorities. And that leads to the problem of the analysis of Authority. Who do we give authority to?
And to say that they have been 'separated from themselves' is a big presumptive stretch.
If I refer to *Europeans*, and if even this term of definition is accepted, I can fairly refer to what has made Europe Europe. And if I can designate that fairly and accurately I can then seek out the elements or the building blocks of *European identity* or the informing building materials. But you have taken ‘what they must be’ in another sense — as an imposition. Yet I say that ‘knowing oneself’ is having (real) power over self-definition. So if I propose anything I propose greater knowledge and awareness. But yes, within defined areas (which are still very wide, inclusive and vast).It suggests that you know what they are/aren't and what they should be.
Well, I may indeed be presumptive, but in no sense is it a presumptive statement to speak about the real possibility of becoming ‘separated from oneself’. The question is to define what one is talking about. There are hundreds of ways people do become separated from themselves. And not the least being when some other, powerful entity, gains power over them and defines them to them. Controls the definitions. You seem always on the verge of having an understanding of this.
What is *authenticity*? and how shall it be defined? There is a very broad conversation that opens when this question is asked.
Christianity is a crucial element, if I can put it this way, within what I consider to be a far larger domain and paideia. You have particular arguments against IC’s position, and likely because you are resisting in him the *constraints* you felt were imposed on you when young.Maybe Christianity is losing the immense hold it has had in the past because more people are becoming more self-directed and recognizing more paths/methods/options.
But I do not propose strict limitations of any sort. Yet I do not propose, and certainly do not recommend, severing a connection with Christianity, nor Jesus Christ or angelic being and entity on a metaphysical level, because that has been the *lens* through which higher dimensions of being and meaning have been perceived. You have a distaste for *Christianity* and so you seem to spit it out of your mouth. I regard that as an error borne of misunderstanding. Can I prove this assertion? I think I can. And that is why I do not recommend tossing it out. I recommend, on the other hand, going more deeply into it. That means getting under *surface* and seeing *depth*.
“I stumbled when I saw”.
Can you really speak for ‘humankind’? Is using such a general term even possible? Do you suppose that now, today, the Chinese Communists and their party or regime are genuinely forging an evolutionary path? What about the people who weild the technology that will lead into the AI and the ‘virtual-reality’ age that seems hard upon the threshold? Can you really be sure what the *long-run* is or how it will develop?But in the long run, humankind seems intent on evolving beyond the beliefs that limit it.
In any case, my own view, which was not easily gained, is that within Christianity and within this idea-realm that we refer to when we use that too-general term are ranges of ideas that are crucial and extremely necessary for defining positive life-outcomes, not the dystopian ones. When you examine the dystopian ones they reveal the degree to which they veered away from this center.
Now that is a statement I can make with a high degree of certainty.
Who and what are you fighting Lacewing?