I am having an email exchange (a short selection below) with a student of the eonic effect. I am fortunate for such intelligent interest: the broad range of responses is little but blank stares.
In a science culture befuddled by Darwinism the substance of history is a closed book, what to say of the evolution into history…
I am sorry to say it but modern civilization is still that of a primitive hominid who has been given the many innovations of civilization in a kind of ‘eonic windfall’. Just what human advances are sui generis and which system generated.
The eonic effect shows an aspect of nature that is far far beyond our current understanding. Higher nature can process poetic meters! And a bit more there…!
I have often wondered if the process of eonic evolution isn’t mankind’s final exam before he graduate to cosmic interaction. It is curious that modern culture is so stuck on the question of evolution. It is an ironic reversal of the confusion over theism. Human thought liberates itself from theism only to get stuck just as badly with Darwinism….
A question from respondent:
Freedom as increase in options makes sense. But that would also mean that the number of choices or options are more limited at the ‘free agency’ level of history compared to the possibilities the ‘eonic driver’ is trying to facilitate, right? Although the ‘free agency’ options after the transition to the modern should be greater than the ‘free agency’ options possible before that transition if evolution in freedom is to mean anything. This should mean that the possibilities to avert disasters would increase from previous examples in history because more options have evolved.
Good points, but you are discovering that the eonic model is a D-day landing and not a completed subject.
You are discovering gaps in the ‘model’, such as it is.
The basic intention to start is to demonstrate a non-random pattern as evidence of a hidden evolutionary ‘driver’.
But the account has a lot of gaps. Here the idea of freedom is like an orphan of science looking for a home.
The limits of free action are real, as you sense: the eonic driver produces genius’ by the dozens and then
the creative moment stops. But let me note that man is getting better at this: For the first time modern culture
has, at least, technological innovation, after the divide, and economic powers. But the secret of the eonic effect
still eludes him (and me). Hardly surprising: man has no technologies of culture and cannot plan operations
on the scale of ten thousand years. The mystery of creativity eludes, although spontaneous genius still occurs
after the divide. Here’s a good example: the ‘eonic driver’ seems to like the tragic genre and produced a huge
flowering in Greece. After the divide almost nothing, except bad imitations (Seneca). Then suddenly in the modern
transition it reappears in English and French transition areas, then disappears once again.
Compare that to the novel, which has strong eonic amp effect (the driver): although the novel has existed (almost)
in ancient times, in the modern transition it takes off, and that in the wake of the passing away of tragedy( a poetic drama
thus at a much higher level of difficulty). Don Quijote is a good example of the sudden burst of the novel.
The novel is relatively easy and survives the divide: it has become a human facility and has expanded to become
a permanent human cultural artistic techne (related to technology but obvious different). But the tragic genre
once again eludes modern culture. We can’t even define it. The issue is philosophic but also one of poetic
forms: in this case blank verse, in English, the ‘alexandrine’ in French. The art of blank verse has died out, mostly. I taught myself to write blank verse,
not hard to do in the simplest case, but not so easy to do well in a play. etc…VERY hard.
This shows us the eonic driver can influence literary genres, and produce tragedian poets on schedule.
Almost impossible to grasp. This aspect of the eonic effect shows that the exclusion of technology and economics
from the model in its later stages is correct, i.e. they have become human possessions as it were.
The ‘technology’ of the eonic effect ( a bad usage perhaps) is far far beyond human capacity so far.
Not surprisng, the scale of the eonic effect, is five thousand years (since Sumer’s take off), the whole
eonic sequence, we guess ten thousand years, and we are left with the question: isn’t the early evolution
of man a part of an early ‘eonic evolution’. We don’t know, but it makes sense to think a zone of hominids
in Africa suddenly getting ten thousand year intervals of fast evolution in localize regions…If the eonic driver
can produce poets who can write tragedies, it should be able to alter ape/hominid genetics???? (speculation,
a danger for this study).
Complexity seems of interest you. In the nineties when I was writing WHEE I studied a bit of chaos
and complexity theory. But those subjects are still caught up in reductionist thinking.
And complexity is relative: the amoeba achieves a level of complexity as plateau:
every cell in the body matches that. The higher complexity of the brain is of course
another story, and I can’t quite answer that. And the question arises, does consciousness evolve:
In one way of course it has to, but as that guy Kastrop (???) claims, consciousness doesn’t evolve.
Perhaps as Bennett seems to wonder it is pervasive and adheres to animals as they evolve?
I don’t know. I think the evolution of consciousness has to be the case as man’s consciousness
develops over the ages. Like electricity which exists in electromagnetic phenomena in nature, but is crystalized
as functional in devices that are man made, the issue of consciousness has a natural form form that crystalizes
in the function of hominids (or animals, what about plants?). There we run into a lot of new age mystics who
gush over consciousness in nature, etc, and I am not endorsing any of that, as such./
Free agency then is finally the same as free action if we can resolve the confusions of free will
It is important study Kant’s critique of metaphysics here: we trespass into metaphysics very often here.
The will is a hard to resolve subject. Between Bennett, and Schopenhauer (Kant) we have a set
of contradictory takes on the subject.
JL…I didn’t quite answer you on the subject of Freedom. I will consider your question further.
WHEE merely invokes an idea of the ‘evolution’ of freedom in passing.
But we must consider to what degree ‘evolution’ has produced ‘free will’ as free agency.
Not an easy question, to say the least. But the reason I am so hung up on Bennett
is that he (after pilfering from Gurdjieff who pilfered from everyone) has what looks
like a complete psychology: being function will…
The factor of will is added to the fundamentals and suddenly it all seems to work, sort of.
(note that consciousness and matter are polarized as being in Bennett, no problems
with the endless confusion over the ‘spiritual’ and material etc..)
Enough for the moment…