Sunday, February 27, 2011

Demiurge : Godhead : : Ego : Self

Today our topic is much more metaphysical yesterday's, but I hope we'll still be able to find practical application for this information.  9 times out of 10, when I mention the concept of the "Demiurge" I get a response of utter confusion.  So today's post will be all about that concept and its reflection in Jungian theory.

The folks from long ago most famed for their use of this concept in metaphysics were the Gnostics.  Some, but not all, of them followed the philosophy of Jesus, but nearly all of them had a negative opinion of deities like Yahweh from the Hebrew holy books.  They believed that the things attributed to gods like Yahweh and Jupiter were deceptions of the Demiurge.  Many believed that experiencing material existence was the result of the Demiurge attempting to trap their souls for its own selfish purposes.

Needless to say Christians*, particularly after the Council of Nicea, did not take kindly to this type of belief.  Christian doctrine was still in the process of crystallizing, and people spreading the heresy that Jesus had come to save people from Yahweh was probably the worst thing possible for the people interested in the utility of Christianity as a Roman state religion.  So the Gnostics were pretty much exterminated; only recently with the discovery of the Nag Hammadi library and the translation of its texts did western civilization re-acquaint itself with their ideas.  Before we look at the modern resurgence, let's look closely at the relationship between Gnosticism and Christianity in their basic forms.  (*When I say 'Christian' in this article, I mean Christians that worship Yahweh, the God of the Old Testament.)

Both Gnostics and Christians would feel a particular desire to save the other from their own beliefs.  To a Christian, the Gnostic had his ear at Satan's mouth, and had been tricked into thinking up was down and God was the tormentor.  The idea that the self-proclaimed creator of this world didn't have one's best interests at heart is fairly horrifying, so these people had to be converted or dealt with.  In mirror, to the Gnostic, the Christian had fallen for a malign deception and made things very easy for the Demiurge, duped into crawling into his mouth and rejoicing at the opportunity to do so.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Some basic exercises to stretch the muscles of your imagination

This is taken directly from the current draft of the book I'm writing.  The book is an introduction to the basics of astrology, but it includes some imaginative exercises to help personalize the symbols of the astrological language. It also includes some basic new thought stuff.  That last part is what I've posted here.  While I do not claim that the methods are my intellectual property, the way they are presented here in the quoted content is.  Please do not copy and distribute it; rather, link to this post.  [begin quoted section:]

"If you think you don't know how to get into a meditative state, you're probably wrong.  Just in case, though, here's the skeleton of a method used to teach autogenic training:

Inducing Relaxation

Sit or lie somewhere comfortable where your spine is straight and your breathing flows easily.  If your head is supported and your neck can take a break, you can relax more easily, but you are also more likely to fall asleep.  Try this with several different positions and see what works for you.  Rest your hands on your lap. 
If you're right-handed like most people, say to yourself, "My right arm is feeling heavier."  If you're left-handed, tell youreslf your left arm is feeling heavier.  Repeat this to yourself at least six times, then say, "I'm calm and relaxed" to yourself.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Something hilarious about something serious

Today I was searching YouTube to see if one of the top astrologers, Liz Greene, has any videos there.  My desire to see her lecture was quickly deflected when I saw that she was mentioned in the tag of a conspiracy video.  Some things you just have to see in order to believe that someone could come up with that.

I've been reading Cosmos and Psyche, historian Richard Tarnas' book that tracks the synchronicity between historical events and the cycles of the outer planets.  So I wasn't surprised when they mentioned the Saturn-Pluto opposition taking place in 2001.  Of course, in the video, they do not mention that squares, oppositions and conjunctions of the Saturn-Pluto cycle have gone along with a vast number of similar moments in history.  Among these are the Thermirodian Reaction during the French Revolution when a very conservative counterpoint to the anarchistic and liberal values espoused earlier in the revolution resulted in the decapitations of a great number of revolutionaries including Georges Danton (who had been partly in charge of earlier revolutionary governing bodies) and Olympe de Gouges (who wrote Declaration on the Rights of Women), the early 1930s when Nazism came to ascendancy in Germany, the mid/late 1940s during which the atomic bomb was dropped twice on Japan, the Cold War started and George Orwell wrote 1984, around 1984 when the Cold War was at its tensest point, and even back in C.E. 235 when the Roman Empire was subjected to military anarchy after the emperor was slain by his own troops and the economy was reduced to barter due to the continuous debasing of the currency that had gone on previously.  So if the "astrology seems correct because of Illuminati conspiracy" hypothesis is correct, these guys have a lot more explaining to do.