At various times throughout the pages of Life-Class in discussing the concept of Buddho-Darwinism I have referred to my thoughts since my little enlightenment in 1977 in Copenhagen (see Bliss), in which I have postulated the idea that God and Satan have many common goals.
After seven years trying to extract this web-site from my mind, it is probably appropriate at this point then to introduce the concept of Abraxas. Many people of my generation will know this word as the name of the second album by the Latin American group Santana, who first came to notice at the Woodstock festival in the 1960s.
On the reverse of the album the group make a quote from Herman Hesse’s novel “Demian” which tells of Emil Sinclair’s journey to a realisation of self.
The Wikipedia web-site currently has a number of avenues from which the concept of Abraxas can be approached, (try searching ‘Abraxas’ and ‘Demian’), but duality of forces affecting our lives and spirituality are important parts.
One passage in Demian is:
“The bird struggles out of the egg. The egg is the world. Whoever wants to be born, must destroy a world. The bird flies to God. That God's name is Abraxas.”
I had read Demian as a teenager on the recommendation of an American pupil at my school with whom I had spent some happy hours smoking pot. My moment of enlightenment, looking back, seems a little to have been what one might expect if one broke through a shell and touched a greater reality. Efforts by others since seem to be trying to push me back in the egg and seal the shell. If anything has changed since then it is maybe that red fascist communism, blue fascist Latin America and quite a bit of racism which could each be thought of as worlds have disappeared to some extent. However the counter to that is that something appears to be trying to destroy the biodiversity and beauty of our planet by encouraging red and blue consumerism. And if you believe James Martin’s predictions, (follow this link), we could even extinguish all but the most robust forms of life on earth.
Where Buddho-Darwinism differs from Demian is in another quote “I have no objection to worshiping this God Jehovah, far from it. But I mean we ought to consider everything sacred, the entire world, not merely the artificially separated half! Thus alongside the divine service we should also have a service for the devil." The reason it differs is that the belief of Buddho-Darwinism would be that the spiritual world is evolving and life on earth is evolving so neither God nor Devil is given service though either might be thought of as an aid when the other is attacking. The quote above becomes then “we ought to consider everything as being entrusted to us by future generations, the entire world, not merely the contrived separated halves.”
I should also say the quote on the Santana album extracted from Demian by Hesse is about a picture of Demian’s mother "We stood before it and began to freeze inside from the exertion. We questioned the painting, berated it, made love to it, prayed to it: We called it mother, called it whore and slut, called it our beloved, called it Abraxas...."
(RECOMMENDATION: As I have tried to explain how perhaps my mind was prepared for being touched by the Buddha’s enlightenment, I would encourage those who do not know them to read Demian by Hesse, perhaps first reading the synopsis on Wikipedia and listening to the Santana album, Abraxas.)
If the US hell’s angels resident in Amsterdam and the Danes who came to Titan youth hotel in 1977 hunting me have some other ideas it is perhaps because, for instance, the Dane called Charlie prefers his role as the Prince of this world and prefers that the rest of mankind is stuffed inside the claustrophobic egg. Perhaps this is why we are heading to a cataclysm by James Martin’s reckoning, because they prefer their roles to considering what is inevitable if nothing changes.
The problem I have more than for myself, is that this renewed shell would have or perhaps already has a worse outcome for the majority of us on the planet. During the eighties the right wing in England would use the expression, ‘the new right enlightenment’. In the nineties the left wing Labour party elected a right wing leader. As a consequence gradually the difference or economic gap between rich and poor has grown. Typically the poor are cast as Christians by choice, disaffected Islamic poor by conviction the infidel is driven by evil and inadequate education and poverty stricken Hindu by the caste system birth.
Take as an example education. Two black politicians within the Labour party, that is two socialists from a poor immigrant background Bernie Grant and Dianne Abbot, wanted their children to go to private schools. Dianne sent hers and Bernie wished he had. The system they had replaced with their original ambitions denied people like me, from a lower middle class background, the right to win a place at a good school by virtue of our abilities tested at age eleven. They have helped destroy belief in the grammar school, but encouraged belief in private education for the rich. It was clear also to me that my intellectual socialist peer at school from the upper middle class, Gary Duckworth, looked down on me, always seeming to endeavour to mock me among mates gathered at lunch time at school, (but only after I left the church), which is the other issue. Since then successive governments have made university education as inaccessible to the poor as my family, the church and Gary perhaps inadvertently conspired to manage. The politicians now expect students to graduate with debts of £60,000 (roughly $100,000). In doing so they are following the lead of the US Amsterdam Hell’s Angels by declaring equally as Larry did in 1977 “It’s alright if you can pay”. Really, if their policies have increased our nation’s wealth, as they claim, with the free university education they got from student grant’s, they should have, over the intervening years, paid sufficient taxes to pay for future generations university education. They don’t though, they get relatively richer and the poor see the mountain of debt that would result from borrowing, too large to bother attempting to climb. In addition the politicians threaten the planet by forcing people to make a decision to get as much money as they can, to ensure their children get the best education, as Bernie and Dianne, which means we move more down the road of consumerism.
This results in under-achieving, poorly motivated people, who once they realise politicians are on the make, as they did a year ago in the 2010 UK government expenses scandal, become susceptible to the idea that if the door is left open then you can help yourself, as they have done in the recent August 2011 riots. The politicians may claim they did nothing illegal, but a lot of them also had no morals and if you are governed by the immoral then the extant law is irrelevant, as monarchs and autocrats have found in the past as they were successively deposed by a desire for democracy, (more to follow hopefully). For an example look at the UK socialist politician Hazel Blears standing up in Parliament after the riots after what she was found to have taken from the public coffers just a year ago.
The winner in this is the police Chief Inspector seeking a police state. The police managed to start a riot by shooting a man, Mark Duggan, using dum dum bullets, banned by the Geneva convention from use in war because of the internal damage they inflict on combatants. The population has been disgusted by the riots, the perpetrators are caught on CCTV, part of the communist style surveillance state the UK has now become and the courts will no doubt be as hard as they can on them. The politicians fuelled by self-righteousness, a year after their hands were caught in the till, will instigate a series of measures to increase police powers.
Going back to planet destroying consumerism mentioned above, fundamentally capitalism cannot abide a steady economic state and must have growth. This drives people to believe that having things is what one should aim for to be a success in society. If one looks at the nations which have experienced food riots recently, we can see that the basic need is driving the lawlessness. Once capitalism has established that happiness is measured by money, then it is only natural that people will riot for consumer goods, (because they have been told that the basic need for happiness can be satisfied by material wealth), when provoked by a police force, using bullets which not even soldiers are allowed to use, that is acting as judge, jury and executioner.
Are our politicians and police working together in the name of US Hell’s Angels philosophy, “it’s alright if you can pay”? Would we not be better off as a planet, accepting the wisdom of the ruler of a Buddhist state, Bhutan, who declared an alternative measure to gross national product, namely gross national happiness? (I rather hope he is the last monarch). Do Hell’s Angels secretly admire Jews, despite wearing Nazi insignia on their leather jackets, because the Jews have no Hindu caste system, no poverty like Christians and no faith in mad ideas about geology for instance and the idea that earthquakes are God punishing them for not being more religious like under-educated Muslims? In other words do they admire Jews for being able to afford the Jewish view of the good life without inhibition? Are the rest of us stuck in a shell seemingly designed to confuse us, (remember I pointed out Leonard Jorgensen shouted his curse ‘confusion’ at me as I left the youth hotel in 1977 (See pages Humour and The Danes), and prevent us making appropriate decisions until we burst into revolt, war or rebellion which results in false justice punishment?
Always remember too that if I had not been despised or mocked I would not have taken the path to a kind of Buddha enlightenment, but equally once the shell had been broken I would not have found those same sorts of people and in some cases exactly the same people, trying to reseal the shell, proving perhaps that they had not done what they did for my own good.