Mysterium Pudendum

Shame is a response to the profanation of a mystery, which almost always occurs when one speaks of it, hence renders imperfectly in exterior and sensible form what is essentially interior and ineffable.  Sex, for example, in its exterior visage, is little more than an act of animal copulation, but for a select few “refined souls” it possesses an interior profundity.

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Un-Ego and Counter-Ego

There is a conflation which is very frequent in Western thought.  One conflates the ego with the things which are often found to be in association with it, but which are nevertheless distinct from it, such as love, desire, pleasure, thought, etc.  The psychic life of man can be broken down into a multitude of constituent parts, perhaps indefinitely so, and the ego is merely one part among many.  It is the “ahamkara”, the sense of individual selfhood, that part of us which reflects upon itself and says “me” and “mine”.  An ego-less desire is far from an inconceivable thing.  It is a desire which is simply there, a “who-less” desire.  By definition, every action performed by the man who “lacks” an ego is unegoistic, no matter how selfish it may appear.

Denying the possibility of an unegoistic action, Friedrich Nietzsche asks, “How could the ego act without the ego?” (Human, All Too Human; aphorism 135).  It cannot.  Nietzsche’s error, however, consists in the false and baseless supposition that there must necessarily be an ego present.  The ego, being  something fundamentally illusory, flimsy, daydream-like, can be dissipated in the presence of sufficient clarity, and so an ego-less man is possible.  However, unegoistic action is very far from resembling what moralist philosophers suppose it to be.  One could just as well unegoistically commit a murder as unegoistically benefit someone.  What such  moralists designate as “unegoistic” is really counter-egoistic, that is, it consists in actions calculated to oppose the ego, and thus such actions also presuppose the presence of an ego and so cannot be truly “unegoistic”, which is a term of negation, denoting an absence, pure and simple.  Caution is necessary here, for very frequently egoistic conduct clothes itself in a counter-egoistic garb.  The only truly counter-egoistic acts, as Nietzsche himself notes in aphorism 139 of the same work, are those done in unconditional obedience to something outside oneself, whether a law or a spiritual guide (the Guru).

If Laughter Could Kill

Humor, particularly that of the ridiculous, the nonsensical, and the absurd, that is, the humor of the carnival, of the Saturnalia, is the domain of Dionysus-Shiva. Humor is a destructive act, but a sort of benign destruction.  When subjected to humor, things cease to be what they formerly were—they are destroyed and yet they remain.  In this respect, Shiva’s role as the trans-former (that is, the transcending or divesting of forms) appears under an interesting guise.  Rather than the forms falling away, through humor it is the essence of things, or, rather, the essences we supposed to be there but which were in fact illusory,  which flee from the forms, and the forms remain behind—only now they are cloud-like, empty of mass, no longer possessing gravity, no longer inspiring fear or respect.  And so we laugh.

Anti-Tradition and Un-Tradition

In the anti-traditional age, the man of tradition plays the part of the Nietzschean “free spirit”, that is, one who is unfettered by social concerns, deviating from established norms, questioning and overturning every dominant value.  Thus, the man of tradition has finally , in this last of all ages, become his own opposite.  But as we know, the point of view of opposition is entirely illusory.  In this last age, then, the man of tradition comes to behold the truly all-encompassing character of tradition, for it is fully present even in the midst of un-tradition.

Androgyny II

The perfect man is also, simultaneously, a perfect woman, whereas the perfect woman is just that—a perfect woman, and nothing more.  Man already possesses a woman within him, whereas woman must always seek man outside herself.  Man is made of mud and spirit, and woman taken out of man’s flesh—he has more than enough flesh left over to suffice for himself.

The World in Perspective

The immanent point of view sees world as world.  The transcendent point of view sees world as non-world. The Supreme point of view sees world as both and neither world and non-world, and non-world as both and neither non-world and world.