This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

NOTICE:
This Dark Age is now available in paperback on Amazon. The print version is MUCH cleaner than this online version, which is largely unedited and has fallen by the wayside as the project has grown. If you’ve appreciated my writing, please consider leaving a review on the relevant paperback volumes. The print edition also includes new sections (Military History, War Psychology, Dogmatic Theology).

Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3| Volume 4 | Volume 5 | Volume 6

Dualism

Although we need not proceed through all of the various ‘philosophies’ that have been put forward through the history of the West, we do wish to address just a few of the difficulties these systems have grappled with, and by putting them in their proper place, attempt to reconcile them.

The first of these difficulties is dualism, the most significant example being the Cartesian notion of the spirit-matter opposition. First, we need to say that this particular dualism is a modern production and depends for its existence mostly on an inability to see beyond appearances. After all it is a fairly accurate description of appearances, but it is nothing more. The idea of matter it proposes is something that was never conceived by the ancients, or by anyone in the East, and the persistence with which the spirit-matter debate has continued is proof of the superficial nature of post-medieval Western thought. The debate was never resolved, but modern science nonetheless takes this dualism as its unacknowledged starting point.

At any rate, from a metaphysical point of view, we can accept the spirit-matter opposition in a relative sense, knowing as we must that the point of view it assumes is itself a very relative one, being a description of appearances and little more, and having accepted it as such, we can say that it fails by a failure to acknowledge that its point of view is not absolute. Yet we are getting ahead of ourselves, and before we show how this problem dissolves under the solution of metaphysics, we need to acknowledge the attempts by moderns to resolve it without that solution. They go about this by adopted an opposite point of view, which can be called ‘monism’, and which says that this dualism is only apparent, which is true, and then reconciles the duality by claiming that one of the terms is reducible to the other, which is not true.

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