This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

I have often played with man, God says. But what a game, it is a game which makes me tremble yet.

I have often played with man but, by God, it was in order to save him, and I have trembled enough because I might not be able to save him…

I often play against man, God says, but it is he who wants to lose, the idiot, and it is I who want him to win.

And I succeed sometimes

In making him win.

~ Charles Péguy

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

1.1. The Purpose and Use of this Manual

The reason for writing / Organization of the workPreliminary warning / The use of the aphoristic form / The use of discourse / Avoidance of apologetics / Against political programs / Athanasius contra mundum / What to include

1.2. Tradition and Its Basic Principles

What is meant by ‘tradition’ / The traditional-modern distinction, its use, and its limits / Tradition and convention / Principles and preferences / Principles are causes / Written and oral transmission / Traditional and Western civilization / Tradition and the principle of a rightly-ordered civilization / Vestiges of tradition in the West / The problem with contrasting East and West / The centrifugal force of becoming / The centripetal force of tradition / A vitalizing knowledge / Traditional principles / Transcendence / Truth / Order / Hierarchy / Unity / Truth is not the invention of the formulator / What is necessary in order to understand doctrine / Credo ut intelligam / Practice of the method / Literalists and figurative speech

1.3. An Overview of Present Conditions

The importance of understanding your environment / The doctrine of Progress / Progress makes knowledge of history unnecessary / The quadripartite division of time / Judeo-Christian tradition / Greek tradition / Hindu tradition / Other traditions / Inseparability of the physical and spiritual / Escapism and religion / The Dark Age / Characteristics of the Kali Yuga / The use of the term “generation” in the Gospels / Sins of the fathers / A historical difficulty / Barriers separating this age from the previous / Cleansing waters / Genesis of the modern period / The extinction of certain types / The disbandment of the warriors / Chivalric orders of medieval Europe / The Samurai of Japan / When and where / The long night / Signs of the Times / Reduction / Quantity / Materialization / Unity and uniformity / Inversion / The supra-individual nature of the thing / Ambient disorder / Avoidance of romanticism / The science of history and the historical sense / The origin of society / The regression of the castes / The spiritual barbarian / The banality of the end / Scientific causality and the life of cultures / Dissolution and inversion

1.4. The Confrontation between Man and Evil (I)

General remarks / The scope of this discussion / When the traditional precepts are not apt / Allowing for the diversity of spiritual vocations / The absurdity of non-resistance as a general principle / We can resist inner evil even when overcome by it / Request for tolerance, demand for approval / Humanism and the conscience / Shame as betrayal / Non-resistance to evil is not strength / Where is evil situated? / Moral evil is always personal / The body as participation in the material order / We all participate in evil / The concept of inducement / Parenting and inducement / Coercion and compulsion as types of inducement / When does inducement become violence? / The dual criteria of love and spiritual insight / The greater the spiritual insight, the greater the prerogative / Violence is always wrong / Secular powers and just war / The line between healthy and abusive inducement / The question of external assistance / Reciprocal moral education is inescapable / The difference between childhood and adulthood / Individualism and socialization / The externalization of the spiritual life / Physical compulsion and restraint / For the sake of free will and not against it / This is not a defense for current forms of compulsion / Some apparent difficulties involved in the use of physical force / Man against himself / We cannot wait for consent / False equivalence between the villain and the just / Free speech as mental coercion / Evil proliferates through tolerance / Private acts have social consequences / Conditions for the use of physical force / Physical compulsion cannot force a mental result / The nature of spiritual love / Errors of compassion / The limit of love / Communion is inescapable / To ignore this is not to avoid it / There is no purely private good or evil / Conclusions based on the communal nature of good and evil / Moral education is a public duty / The importance of a shared vision of the good / Worship of liberty ends up justifying abuse / There is no neutrality / Evil is by nature aggressive / Evil makes use of all means / The tragic encounter / Inherited victory and squandered social capital / Persuasion and inducement

1.5. The Confrontation between Man and Evil (II)

The warrior and the teacher / Great spiritual teachers demonstrate the exception / The problem of the idealist / Different worlds of meaning / The religious view and the humanist view / The warrior sacrifices himself both physically and morally / The example of the executioner / The warrior does not possess righteousness / The paralysis of the perfectionist / Righteous killing is a fantasy / The humility of the fighter is what saves him / War spiritually distorts everyone involved / Moral heroism cannot be the norm / Military service is not a direct road to heroism/ The perks of military service / The problem of the idealization of the military / Anything less than perfect is distasteful / The immediately feasible or the impossible perfect / Justice and morality are not coextensive / The spiritual compromise / The spiritual compromise is inherent in the human experience / The doctrine of the fall and ritual absolution / The monk also makes the spiritual compromise / The danger of absolute justifications for the use of force / The sword is a duty not a prerogative / Those who live by the sword die by the sword / To hide from the sword is to invite evil / Only the strong / The conscience is not deadened but sharpened / Legitimate departures from moral perfection / The necessary spiritual cleansing / We must be very careful adapting traditional teachings in the present / Heroism as an opportunity for transcendance / Caste regression and the evolution of war / The samurai and the Way beyond righteousness / Holy War and the Crusades / Only the lesser war remains / The real enemy and the real victory

4. The Catholic Adaptation

4.1. Introduction

Abbreviations for Magisterial Documents / The universality and relativity of social teachings / Reservations about the doctrine and its use / The legitimacy of the synthesis / The doctrine of the Jubilee as a summary / Remarks on sources used

4.2. Justifications for the Social Doctrine

General remarks / Grace presupposes nature / The “soul” of the social body / Faith and morals / When the worldly undermines the eternal / Interpreting the signs of the times / Continuity and renewal / Remarks on Vatican II / The example of Dignitatis Humanae / Catholic Social Teaching, systems, and ideology / Authority of the Doctrine

4.3. The Catholic View of Man

His social nature / Aquinas on the social nature of man / The consensus of the pagans / The Enlightenment and the social contract / Personal development / Sin in its social aspect / The law of descent—the law of ascent / Rights and Duties / Rights imply relation / Rights presuppose duties / Rights are not absolute / Family Life / Male and female “from the beginning” / The cell of society, the cradle of life / The domestic Church / Two-fold purpose of the family / The needs of the family are central to CST

4.4. Basic Principles

General remarks / Common good / Universal destination of goods / Private property / Justifications for private property according to Aquinas / The right of private property is to support the family / The right of private property is not absolute / The preferential option for the poor / Solidarity and subsidiarity / Solidarity—working for the common good / Subsidiarity—enabling responsibility / Subsidiarity as a response to doctrinaire individualism / Subsidiarity defined / Subsidiarity enables the State to act in its proper sphere / Geared toward the family and intermediate associations / Freedom / Purposive freedom / Freedom of the will depends on intelligence / Freedom and truth / Freedom and morality / Freedom and society / Freedom, natural law, and the body / Freedom and conscience / Slavery / Justice / Commutative justice / Distributive justice / Legal justice / Social justice / Ideology and the oversimplification of justice

4.5. Morality

General remarks / Natural Law–Which law? What nature? / Eternal law / Natural law / Human law / The precepts of the natural law / Not everything in nature is natural / Conscience / What is a ‘good conscience’? / Conscience is not infallible / The problem with ‘primacy of conscience’ / Act, intention, and the problem of subjective morality / Doing evil that good may come of it / The exercise of prudence / Memory / Docility / Diligence / Foresight / Circumspection / Participation and obedience / The problem with ‘prudential judgment’ / Ignorance / Two kinds of ignorance / Invincible ignorance / Vincible ignorance / Specific issues and applications / Lying / Abortion / Homosexuality / Torture / Homicide / Suicide / The question of culpability

4.6. Economic Life

General remarks / Four phases of economic activity / The three false commodities—land, labor, money / Land / Labor / Money / The essence of capitalism / The separation of ownership from work / Forces of concentration unleashed / Capitalism as economic liberalism / Socialism as the child of capitalism / Capitalism and socialism as two ideologies to be avoided / Against forms of materialistic ‘economism’ / The doctrine of diffused property / Work and the human person / Subjective and objective purposes of work / Direct and indirect employers / Agreements between employer and employee / Stakeholders over shareholders / Competition or cooperation? / Self-interest and the profit motive / An expression of consequentialism / Self-interest fuels the growth of the State / Profit motive as the engine of economic growth / Market autonomy and the “free” market / Morality and economic theory / Consumerism / Intermediate Organizations—Unions / The just price / The living wage / The example of the guild system / The Catholic call for a return to the guild principle / On adaptation

4.7. Political Society

The problem of ideology / Liberalism and the Social Teaching / Liberalism is not an American political party / The true purpose of the State / The end of the State must coincide with the end of man / The relations between Church and State / Leo XIII on the separation of Church and State / Martin Luther on the separation of Church and State / Confession versus coercion / Peace or strife? / True peace is harmony of wills / On obedience and revolution / State as protector of rights / Free of speech and the press / Self-ownership / The rights of God / Wealth as a ‘necessary occasion of sin’ / The distinction between ownership and use / Private charity vs government action / Justice before charity / “You didn’t build that” / The velocity of money / Proper attitudes toward poverty / Both the individual and the State have roles to play / Against stigmatizing the poor with stereotypes / Poverty does not imply laziness or disdain for work / “Hunger is a great motivator” / “He who will not work, neither shall he eat” / Taxes / The justice of a progressive tax system / The poor should not pay income tax / Inequality and redistribution / A problem of distributive justice / Removing structural causes of inequality / Redistribution

4.8. The Natural Environment

A long-standing concern / A legitimate concern / Proper attitudes toward the environment / A crisis of selfishness / Disproportionate responsibilities / Against economism and short-sightedness / Value of resources as capital / Value as beauty / Value as truth / Respect for creation cannot coincide with present lifestyle / Human ecology / Population control is not the answer / Disregard for nature will provoke a response

4.9. War and Catholic Social Teaching

General remarks / Jus ad bellum, or “the right to go to war” / Righteous anger vs. wrath / Strict conditions / Lasting, grave, and certain / All other means exhausted / Prospects of success / Must not produce greater evils / Competent authority / Jus in bello, or “right conduct in war” / Non-combatants / The law of double-effect / Disarmament / Terrorism

5. The Study of Doctrine

5.1. Language and Translation

The idea of translation / Languages are not arbitrary / Traditional language and magic / Languages are not equivalent / Translation, interpretation, commentary / Translation is for the most part impossible / Trust the translator and not the translation / Linguistic aptitudes match mental aptitudes / Vernacular and official language / The advantage of co-existing vernacular and official languages / Theory of meaning in literature / Dante’s use of the vernacular

5.2. Master and Disciple

Means of transmission / The role of the guru / Traditional teaching and Western education / The upaguru as a prolongation of the guru / Initiatic transmission and the qualities of the guru / The Buddha’s encounter with the Devas / The necessity of the guru / Islamic initiation in the absence of a living guru / A note on qualifications of the guru / The guru and the practice of exoterism / True and false spiritual teachers / Self-initiation and affiliation with dead forms / The function of the upaguru and the question of qualifications / Superiority and inferiority in the occasional teacher / Attacks on the teaching office based on moral grounds / The futility of moral comparisons / The office of the guru / A framework for imparting counsel / General allowances for emotional strain / The task of re-framing questions / Traditional norms over personal experience / Due concern for emotional investment during correction / Show sympathy without delving into personal histories / The role of a traditional framework / Two types of corruption / Finding a guru in the modern context

5.3. Distinctions Regarding Metaphysics

The character of metaphysics / Intellectual intuition / Aristotle and Aquinas / Experimental science and metaphysics / There are no discoveries in metaphysics / All formulations are limited / Modern predispositions and metaphysics / The difficulty of imagination / Metaphysics and theology / Confusion of metaphysics and theology / Proofs for God’s existence / Hindu deliverance vs. Christian salvation / The consolatory principle / Metaphysical realization / Philosophy and metaphysics / Logic and mathematics / The exposition of metaphysics / Moralism and metaphysics/ Originality / Systematization mania / Dualism / Monism / The identity of spiritualism and materialism / Non-dualism / Being is a determination

5.4. Esoterism and Exoterism

General remarks / The line of demarcation between exoteric and esoteric / Esoteric doctrine is often oral / Esoterism, exoterism, and religion / Three modes of thought / Knowing and believing / Metaphysics opens a door—philosophy closes one / Unity unrealizable externally / The rule of secrecy in the modern world / Exoterism and salvation / The meaning of dogma / Necessitated by the diversity of human types / When esoterism becomes problematic / Exoterism and the futility of apologetics / Passive and active participation / The exoteric treatment of history / The diversity of humanity / The Gospel is for the world, but which world? / The denial of other religious forms by Prophets / The Islamic rejection of the Trinity / Did Christ speak of esoterism? / The subjectivized absolute

5.5. Principles of Esoterism

Initiatic orders and esoterism / Contemporary disequilibrium / The mode of spiritual expression in contemporary Protestantism / Sensus fidelium / The people and the development of method and doctrine / The superiority of a religion / Questions ignored by exoterism / The graduated order of reality / The relativity of Being or God / The presence of the Intellect in all beings / Knowledge and morality / Beyond paradise / Beware accusations of pantheism / Being as essence and as substance / Divine impersonality / Contradictions between exoterism and esoterism that result / Sin and moral wrong / Definition of exoterism / Evil in the esoteric view / Virtue and morality / The danger of moralism / The law of reduced culpability / Why evil exists / The esoteric explanation for the existence of evil / Predestination / The distinction between beings in terms of Intelligence and Existence / An anecdote on the relativity of religious forms

5.6. Cautions Regarding Esoterism

General remarks / The presence of esoterism as criterion of truth in religions / What esoterism is not / Eliphas Levi on occultism / Etymology and meaning / The legitimacy of the exoteric-esoteric distinction / Exoteric and esoteric teachings / The universal and the general with regard to esoterism / The relativity of the esoteric / Esoterism is not a standalone archetypal doctrine / Who has seen me has seen the Father / Esoterism and exoterism are hermeneutic perspectives / We are all exoterists to a degree / Esoterism as a shifting frontier

5.7. Proselytism and Religious Expansion

Christian fundamentalism and contemporary evangelicalism / Modern life obscures the limits of religious expansion / One sun among many stars / Christ’s world / Uniqueness within the chain of being / Is America part of Christ’s providential sphere of expansion? / Is missionary activity valid? / The specificity of the Great Commission / Legitimate missionary activity in the modern world is extremely rare / St. Paul as the Christian model for missionary activity / Evangelism in East and West / The superficiality of conversions / Alienation and exoterism in a global world / Decadence around the world / Conversion and apostasy / Then the end will come / The limits of Islamic law / Hinduism and the serenity of age / Mleccha Avatara / The decay of Hindu social structures and the balance of Islam / The dissolution of the Hindu castes / The flames of hell grow cold / The duality of Divine manifestations / The barriers set for the Apostles

5.8. Schism and Adaptation

The nature and necessity of schism / The difference between necessary schism and heresy / Schism in the universal sense / The Judaic-Christian schism / The possibility of adaptation within the Old Testament / The introduction of the Messianic idea with the Mosaic Tradition / A summary of the monotheistic cycle / The trinity and the three monotheistic revelations / The political impotence of Christianity / Islam in an egalitarian age / On points of view, physical and spiritual / Points of view within a single religion / Correspondences and external comparisons are not enough / The scriptures as an example of the difference between points of view in the great religions / Further distinctions between Islam and Christianity / The sublimation and the norm / Religion as organism / A basis in fact as another reason for differences in religion / The Koran and Christ, the Prophet and the Virgin / Mary, Mohammed, Prakriti / God’s reason for creating

5.9. Art and Doctrine

General remarks / Art as exaltation /Beauty and novelty / Basic principles of traditional art / The beauty of naturalistic art / The value of icons / The Hindu ‘darshan’ or ‘viewing’ / Renaissance art as imbalance / The loss of the metaphysical ends in a purely sentimental art / Surrealism

6. Christianity

6.1. Characteristics of Christian Doctrine

Christianity and esoterism / Esoterism of structure and content / Restrictive nature of exoterism / Citations from the early church regarding universality / Difficulties that result from intermingling of levels / Providential limitations / The spirit and the letter / The distinction of levels reconciles contradictions / Divergences good and bad / Christ did not condemn the Old Law / Christian mysteries / Christian mingling of levels and the Islamic response / The revelation is perfect even if problematic / Christianity as a bhaktic way / The ambiguity of providence / To be man is to know / Debates on primacy of intellect and will / Intelligence and sincerity / The weakness of Thomism and Western epistemology in general

6.2. The Way of Mystery

The errors of certain esoterists / Primary esoterism and secondary esoterism / Christianity the mystery religion / The significance of the title ‘Christian’ / The anointed, Christians as Christs / Sacramentalism / Sacramental character / The Eucharist is the Mystery / The term mysterion / St. Paul and the mysterion / Gnosis proceeds from revelation / The gnosis of the apostles transmitted orally / The meaning of the prohibition against casting pearls before swine / Mystery and mysticism / The difficulty of the great mystics / The confusion of the psychic and spiritual / Mystery as a pointer to the Absolute / The sensus mysticus should not be limited to certain of its expressions / Mystical theology and the way of gnosis / How to understand the Revelation / The Church is One

6.3. Mysticism

The narrowness of contemporary Christian mysticism / Karma, bhakti, jnana / Mysticism integrates both love and knowledge / Doctrine and method / Theosis and the Logos / The three stages of the spiritual life / Art without science is nothing / The temperaments and their corresponding weaknesses / The invocation of the Divine Name as a universal method / Invocation and its appropriateness to the Dark Age / The example of Hesychasm / The Jesus Prayer in the West, and the Rosary

6.4. The Eucharist

Remarks on sacrifice / The Mass as sacrifice / The Mass in continuity with the Jewish tradition / The Passover as the context for the institution of the Eucharist / The origin and purpose of sacrifice / The essential goal of sacrifice / The legitimacy of a substitute / All sacrifice is human sacrifice / The necessity of bloody sacrifice / The Mass and the ‘worship service’ / Contemporary misappropriation of religion concepts / The sacrifice of the holocaust / The eternal sacrifice of God / The death of the victim / The doctrine of ‘faith alone’ as it pertains to religious activity / The efficacy of ritual action / Anamnesis and the concept of ritual remembrance / The universality of anamnesis / Transubstantiation according to Aquinas

6.5. The Virgin Mary

General remarks / The Marian mystery / What sources may we use to formulate the doctrine? / The weakness of the Western theological approach in the face of the mysteries / Theotokos—Mother of God / Symbolic overlap / Mary as matron of vegetable life / Mary as virgin earth / Mary as the marriage of heaven and earth / Mary as the Garden of Eden / Mary as the tree and the tree of life itself / Mary as the Burning Bush / Mary as the door of paradise / The four Marian dogmas / Monotheism and polytheism as two doctrinal languages / Mary as fulfullment of the Great Mother goddesses / Hyperdulia and the possibility of a Marian vocabulary / The importance of the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption / The metaphysics of the Marian Mystery / Mary as avatar of universal substance / Jesus and Mary, Purusha and Prakriti / Parallelism in the names of the Virgin / Mary as the eternal feminine / Mary as Wisdom / Creation as divine play / The symbolism of the Black Virgin / The gift of perfect blackness / The subterranean divine / The doctrinal significance of her name / Further citations on the Virgin

7. Islam

7.1. Introductory Remarks

Cartoon theology and Western prejudice / Disingenuous approaches to Islamic doctrine / Learn Islam from Islam

7.2. The Prophet

Concerning the name Islam / Allah and Elohim / Ancestry and origins of the Semitic religions / The Seal of the Prophets / The hanifs and the name Allah / The Night of Power / Early followers and opposition / Miracles in the Islamic tradition / The Migration to Yathrib / Three holy cities / Islam encompasses every aspect of human life / Two types of spiritual leaders

7.3. The Koran

The miracle of Islam / The Koran in translation / Sacred language / Emphasis on spoken form / Levels of meaning and interpretation

7.4. Basic Concepts

Koran, hadith, Sunnah, Shariah / Monotheism in the Arabic world / Respect for Jesus as prophet / Original sin / The Five Pillars / Pillar One—Shahadah, or the confession / Pillar Two—Salat, or canonical prayer / Pillar Three—Zakat, or almsgiving / Pillar Four—Sawm, or fasting during Ramadan / Pillar Five—Hajj, or pilgrimage / Respect shown toward other religions / Religious tolerance and religious violence / Tawhid—the One God / Orthodoxy and authority for the believer / Human nature and the ‘fall’ / All authentic revelations are Islamic / The absence of theodicy and the Islamic conscience / Salvation through knowledge and the purpose of creation / The temptation of Adam and Eve / Islam and the multiplicity of revelations / Umm al-kitab—the Mother Book / A prophet is beholden to no one but God

7.5. Branches, Sects, and Movements

The geographical range of the Islamic world / Underlying unity / Islamic community and the Abode of Islam / Faithfulness to the Koran / The doctrine of Tawhid / The Sunnah and Hadith / Shariah Law / The unifying presence of the Sufi orders / Apostolic succession and initiatic continuity / The wheel as the hierarchical representation of Islam / The capacity to embrace diversity / Sunni and Shia / On the title Imam as used in Shiism / Reverence for the members of the family of the Prophet / Divisions within Sunnism / Wahhabism and difficulties with labels and overlap / Divisions within Shiism / Mahdiism in Sunni and Shiite eschatology / Isma’ili Shiism and the Fatimid Caliphate / Zaydi Shiism / The question of theology, or kalam, in the Islamic world / Two extremes of the spectrum / Remnants of pre-Islamic religions in the Islamic world / Political groups and local situations / Movements as opposed to branches and sects / Asharism and Salafism / Islamic responses to Western imperialism

7.6. Sharia Law and the Social Order

Conceptual difficulties / Reiteration of the Abrahamic cycle according to Islam / In the Sharia, God determines society / Sharia law and its levels / The transfiguration of everyday life

8. Hinduism

8.1. Introductory Remarks

What is a Hindu? / Mazdaism / The ‘Aryan’ race / Hindu unity / The Veda / Vedism, Brahmanism, Hinduism / Dating of the Veda / The perpetuity of the Veda / Coherence of the Veda / Orthodoxy and heterodoxy / The example of atomism / Personal attributions of the darshanas / Upanishads and Brahma Sutras / Shruti and smriti / Inverse analogy / God in Hinduism and in the Vedanta in particular / Buddhism and Hinduism / Which Buddism? / The attitude of Hindus to Buddhism / Ambulatory adaptations / Attempts to translate the term ‘dharma’ / Dharma and karma / The meaning of dharma / Dharma and moral duty / Adharma / Prajapati and Manu / Terms used to describe caste / Nama and rupa / Diversity of natures / Symbolic meaning behind the origin of the castes / The superiority of the Brahmanas / Direct and indirect participation in the tradition

8.2. Points of View Within The Doctrine

The Divine Personality / Brahma and Ishwara / Polytheism and Pratika / The Triple Manifestation of Ishwara / Shivaism and Vishnuism / Shakti and Shaktas / Symbolical filiation / Further remarks on points of view within Hinduism / The six Vedangas / The four Upavedas / Enumeration of the six darshanas

8.3. Nyaya

Nyaya as logic / Nyaya argument and the five avayavas / The identity of subject and object

8.4. Vaisheshika

Vaisheshika / Vaisheshika as cosmology / The six padarthas of Vaisheshika / Existence and non-existence / Subdivisions of dravya / Naturalism and atomism

8.5. Sankhya

Sankhya / Universal Substance, or Prakriti / Pure Intellect, or Buddhi / Individual consciousness, or ahamkara / Subtle and gross elements / Eleven faculties / Purusha / Dualism / The three gunas / Atheism and materialism in Sankhya

8.6. Yoga

The meaning of Yoga / The introduction of Ishwara / The point of view of realization / The centrality of concentration / Raja-yoga / The Yogi / Yoga as preparation for realization

8.7. Mimansa

Mimansa / The justifications of dharma / Jnana and karma / Pramanas / Brahmana and mantra / Infallibility / The Vedangas / Mimansa and law / Apurva / Apurva, karma, dharma

8.8. Vedanta

The meaning of Vedanta / The Brahma-sutras / Advaita-vada, or non-duality / Pantheism / Moksha or Deliverance / Deliverance as knowledge

8.9. Caste

Caste and modern India / Presence and absence of caste in the traditional world / Christianity and caste / Humanist egalitarianism is not traditional egalitarianism / Exceptions and exclusions / Ascending development vs. descending elaboration / To what do the castes correspond? / Our world is determined what is real to us / What is real for the Brahmana? / What is real for the Kshatriya? / What is real for the Vaishya? / The twice-born and the shudra / Similarities and confusions / Characterization of the modern West / Impurity and the outcast / Racism and slavery in the theory of caste / The rights of society and the rights of the individual / Bhakti and the effacement of caste / Exclusion from temples / Uniqueness of each nature / Three gunas, three tendencies / Caste is natural / Justice of caste / Four principal castes / Vertical interdependence / Knowledge over power / Hamsa, primordial unity, and the problem of indistinction / The law of heredity in the modern world / Contemporary values that nullify heredity / Technology and heredity / The position of the proletariat / Machine, class, caste / The machine world, cunning, and spiritual blindness / Could the Hindu world abandon caste? / Positive aspects of casteless traditions / Celibacy in the absence of caste / Caste and contemporary humanitarianism / Poverty in the machine age / On judging the happiness of distant peoples / Theocratic equality and profane equality

10. The Doctrine of Man

10.1. Spiritual Temperament

General remarks / Inward and outward equilibrium / Orthodoxy and universality / Intellect and will / All things participate in the Intellect / Masculine and feminine / Intellect and reason / The jnana cannot neglect charity / Intrinsic virtue and the moral law / The ego-other distinction / The necessity of charity for all types / We receive and we are the Truth / Apophasis and negative virtue / Law and orthodoxy / Two perfections

10.2. Greco-Catholic Spiritual Anthropology

The presence of teleology / An overview of tripartite cosmology / The corporeal state / The subtle or ‘psychic’ state / The spiritual or ‘pneumatic’ state / The tripartite constition of man / Adam and the descent of man / The accusation of trichotomism / St. Paul and multiple dualisms / Plato’s doctrine of the soul / Aristotle and the intellect / Christiantiy does not require Aristotle in order to speak about man / Tripartite anthropology in Christian history / The significance of St. Thomas Aquinas

10.3. Hindu Autology

General remarks / The distinction between Self and ego / Personality and individuality / The Self and Atma / Essential distinctions related to the Universal and the individual / Universal: unmanifested and formless manifestation / Individual or formal manifestation: subtle and gross state / Asymmetry between orders / Degrees of existence / The Supreme Identity / Seat of Brahma / Potentiality vs possibility

10.4. Purusha and Prakriti

Purusha, prakriti, and the human person / Purusha, Prajapati, and Manu / Microcosm, Macrocosm, and Universal Man / Prakriti, mother of forms / Prakriti and the three gunas / Purusha is unaffected by individual modifications / Prakriti and the symbol of waters / Four worlds

10.5. Degrees of Individual Manifestation

Buddhi or ‘higher intellect’ as first degree of manifestation / Buddhi and the Trimurti / Ahankara or the individual consciousness / Subtle and gross elements / The ten external faculties of action and sensation / The indryas or faculties of sensation and action / Manas / The collaboration of the indriyas, ahankara, and transference through Buddhi / Five koshas or ‘envelopes’ of the Self / All organic beings possess these eleven faculties

10.6. Human States and Conditions of Atma

Brahma is distinct from that which It pervades / The Unity of the Self / Four states of the living being–four conditions of Atma / The sacred monosyllable / The waking state or Vaishvanara / Seven members and nineteen mouths / Inverse analogy / Dream state or Taijasa / The fiery vehicle / The soul as light unto itself / Ideal and real / Faculties of the dream state / Deep sleep or Prajna / The unconditioned state / Additional remarks on the sacred monosyllable

10.7. Death and Afterlife

General remarks / The identity of birth and death / The persistence of the individual in the principial state / Two paths, and the prolongation of the individual / Reabsorption of the individual faculties / Differences in posthumous conditions / Different paths to Deliverance / Coronal artery and solar ray / The path of liberation / The path of the ancestors / The path of the gods / Generation and corruption / Final Deliverance / Videha-Mukti and Jivan-Mukta / The yogi and supreme identity

10.8. Satan, Hell, and Damnation

Satan as theological postulate / The kingdom of heaven is within you / Common difficulties / The necessary admittance of dualism / Why does God permit evil? / Two souls at war in my breast / The threefold composition of man / Where is the devil in man? / Ambiguity of the term ‘soul’ / The immorality of the soul / The soul as devil / The personality of the devil / The sundering of soul and spirit / Devils and damnation / Fundamental psychomachy / The meaning and identity of Satan / Further distinctions / The meaning of traditional anonymity / Cogito ergo sum / Theotokos and the erotic element in religion and myth / The immortality of Satan and damnation / The question of demon possession / Death and the need to die before we die

10.9. Reincarnation and Transmigration

The importance of this discussion / Reincarnation as commonly understood / Metempsychosis / Metempsychosis further distinguished from reincarnation / Metempsychosis and heredity / Psychics, séances, and hauntings / The legitimacy of burial rights / Transmigration / Transmigration and the doctrine of samsara / Samsara and the multiple states of the being / Modern ideology as a possible explanation for reincarnationist confusions / Confusions and clarity / Simultaneity / Passing through all stages

10.10. Evolution and Original Differentiation

The need for cosmology / Myth and the loss of the symbolical mind / Quantity cannot explain quality / Traditional hylomorphism / Multiple states of being / Archetype and species / The transformist illusion / On the absence of intermediate forms / The futility of the debate / The ascending presentation of animal forms / A mimic is not a missing link / The traditional theory of emanation / Hierarchy and progressive solidification / Consciousness rather than chemical distinction / The mythological account and correspondences / The emergence of man / Conclusion

10.11. Human Sexuality

General remarks / Eros and sex / Limits of the concept of love / On looking to women to learn about sex / Psychoanalysis and sex / The significance of the modern obsession / Exhibitionism and vicarious sexuality / Enslavement to woman in the Kali Yuga / Stages of regression / D.H. Lawrence / Nature and what is natural / Reversing the instinctual view of sex / The instinct for reproduction / Asexual reproduction / Sexual desire in higher and lower beings / Pleasure as the basis of sex / The complexity of sexual desire / The magnetic theory of love / The Far Eastern doctrine of tsing and its ramifications / Proportional attraction / Jack London’s subtle atmosphere / Human pheromones / The kiss / Mauclair on the supra-rational nature of magnetic love / Magnetism and magic / Magnetic love and the institution of marriage / Degrees of sexual development / Theory of attraction based on Plato’s complementarism / Sex as vocation and destiny / Inferiority and superiority between the sexes / Inner sex and outer sex / The values of modern civilization lead to the pursuit ‘equality’ between the sexes / The ambitions of the feminists / The soul of a woman in the body of a man / A citation from the Hagakure / The primacy of the spiritual / Medical manipulations and sex changes / Indifference and specificity of sexual desire / Spiritual depth and stability of the sexual force / The mythological union of the sexes / Results of the rejection of complementarism

11. Counsels

11.1. The Challenge of the Dark Age

This section in relation to the whole / Acceptance of our historical situation has consequences / Beneficial aspects of the situation / The deviant / Counterfeit traditions / The fate of the modern heretic / Life anesthetized / Awakening / One way ticket / The generosity of the master at the end of the day / Things are always changing / Further justification for dwelling on Apocalypse / Do not exempt yourself from the catastrophe / The question you must answer / Resist not evil, the purifying function of the Antichrist / What does this mean for the conduct of one’s life?

11.2. Contemporary Obstacles

Agnostic by birth / Shame / The silver spoon / The American dream / Tradition and convention / The experience of freedom / Self-consciousness / Denizens of the verbal universe / Thought is work / Dealing with the ignorant / You can tell a lot about someone by the questions they ask / Relationships / Safe sex / Marriage as an alien institution / Unisex society / What is an adult? / Children as accessories / The mockery of the modern church / The politics of whatever / Toxic patriotism / War as old news / Vacancies in the tower of babel / The environment / Inebriation and anesthesia / Homo economicus / Automatism and free will / Breaking the vicious circle / Spiritual fathers / Franz Kafka / Fyodor Dostoyevsky / Albert Camus / Henry Miller / Friedrich Nietzsche / The plunge of being into becoming

11.3. Coming to Know God

Awareness of the inexpressible / Beyond thought and prior to it / Seeing beyond the familiar / All objects are significant / False-obviousness and expectation / Rational objections are futile / The necessity of understanding the limits of rationalism / The role of doubt / Thoughts are memories / We are not our concepts / The contemplative is maladjusted / Gnosis is immediate / A universal capacity / Asking questions about meaning / From wonder to reverence, and the roots of religion / The inexpressible and the spiritual / Intimacy and secrecy / Accusations of emotionalism / To sense meaning is not to create it / Scientific knowledge is not opposed to gnosis / We have a responsibility to our symbols / The benefits of stillness and activity / Experience is necessary to man / Man as conqueror or as steward of the world / The adequacy of the question determines the adequacy of the answer / The false honesty of agnosticism / Who am I? / Disguised transcendence / Man as object / Philosophical proofs / Security is not to be had—the error of the apologetic approach / Questions mean more than they say / The question is the enunciation of a spiritual need / Awareness of a spiritual presence as the primary thing / The vertical dimension / Awareness of the transcendent is not an awareness of God / The answer to the question is us / God is more real to us than we are to ourselves / Attempts to reason to God / Reverence, not reasoning, precedes faith / Apologetics serves the purpose of clearing away debris / The reason apologetics is more important for protestants / We are coerced temporarily, and then abandoned to doubts / The implications of the free will

11.4. Knowing Thyself

Admitting to differentiation / Being differentiated from your contemporaries does not require that you despise them / Discover the Self / Christian contemplation in relation to metaphysical realization / What contemplation is / Contemplation outruns faith / Contemplation is not visions or locutions / The Cloud of Unknowing / Contemplation is the realization of what all Christians believe but do not experience / Neither physical nor even psychic phenomena are ‘proof’ of contemplation / Symbolism in contemplation / Do not cling to conceptual certainty / Do not expect lasting peace / To identify with the false self is to avoid encountering God / Receptivity / To be oneself is to conform to God’s will and to know it / The problem with dualism / The false self, the superficial ego / Our improper use of things makes them evil / Avoid trying to Christianize everything you do / Becoming like God, or becoming God? / Slavery is identification with the false self / Do not disparage things / Man is body and soul / Be yourself, but which self? / To find oneself is to become a saint / To refuse God’s will is to refuse to exist / The life of sin is a cult of the shadow-self / The self made man / Remarks on unity and division / Warning against moralism / Various related problems / The myth of equilibrium / The ultimate vice / The war of ends and means / Temperament / You are needy / Uses for the fall / Recognition through familiarity / Goal of the alcoholic / Be careful with reflection and do not dwell too long on yourself / Actaeon’s lesson / Reciprocal transfiguration / You cannot truly escape the effects of your environment / Be comfortable with your mortality, but recognize your immortality / The impotence of knowledge / Do not pit faith against works / The Middle Way / Forget your good deeds / Do not argue with the willfully ignorant

11.5. Advice on Political Participation

Apoliteia / The advice of Pythagoras/ The mature approach to politics / What is worth saving? / Voting is the expenditure of valuable political energies in futility / Young people as scapegoats / Democracy and the founders / Voting as superstition / The non-voters win / The example of Henry David Thoreau / Voters are the ones who can’t complain / Does voting prevent tyranny? / “It’s your Christian duty” / Voting as diversion / The true opium of the people / Effective representation / The founders on political parties / Where freedom goes to die / Voting for Hitler / The lesser evil is still an evil / You don’t know much, and that’s okay / Masses do not reason / What’s your sphere of competence? / The myth of common sense / Words without meaning / Economic power and political power / Investment theory and party politics / Corporations and the personification of money / Institutionalized bribery / Rediscovering communication / Alternatives to the vote / Beyond optimism and pessimism