Higher realms of thought

Or how the thoughts of some very long gone Greeks,
Romans and others, apply to the modern day Craft

As a student in college I came to love my classes of the old masters on Philosophy.
But I had made their acquaintance,; long before that.

Now I am sure your asking yourself ,what has the thoughts of; people like; Socrates, Plato, Kant ...
and many others have to do with the Craft ?

It has to do with how we as a people think.

These men formed the basis behind how we currently look at the world.

The realms of science, and more ...on how we look at esoteric thoughts,
;These things owe their beginnings to these men of vision.

These things were always there .. but these guys tried to work it all out
and put it down in words... in recent time for the western world


Now a great many pages you will see on the web on this subject are deep enough and complex
enough, that a fast read of the first page is enough
to make most people go...
BYE BYE

Well ya won't get that here....for those who want to take off their shoes and dive in...
there will be links to take them to places to get their feet wet..


But for the rest who are here to see how
these long gone guys relate to the practice of the Craft in brief.
Read on...

If you have read my other pages on Meditation, Chakras, the Cabala etc...
you have an idea of how thought influences action.The works by the old guys
are the basis behind that framework.
For example:

Protagoras who said
" Man is the measure of all truth "

Meaning a mans reasoning ability is how we should measure something's reality or worth.
As we of the Craft are told again and again to accept nothing
( not even from me..) on faith alone ,but by the work of the mind
and proving to the self the truth of something.

Or this one:

Socrates :Taught that
" The only true knowledge is a knowledge by means of concepts "

Which meant in simple terms.. A chair is not a thing of wood or stone, on which we sit, it is the concept ,
an idea of the chair which matters .. not the object we refer to.; Which has only a transitory life, before it becomes dust,
the same goes for everything else we call concrete reality.

So the step in the Craft to "unreality" the world of form and thought ,
;which we enter while doing ritual....would have made Socrates smile.
As it's the only reality out there, he would; have said.

Or his student:

Plato
Took this as a principle of Being.

" If the concept represents all the reality of things, the reality must be something in the ideal order,
not necessarily in the things themselves, but rather above them, in a world by itself."

Which is Socrates world of forms.

Again as above so below, as we would say...there is an order
and we of the Craft access this realm of order
that is above the material realm of matter
in the working of the Craft.

Or how about this guy:

Immanuel Kant

" The material of our sense knowledge comes from experience. The form, however, is not derived
through the senses, The most important forms of sense knowledge, the conditions, in fact, of all sensation,
are space and time."

In other words... again the world of forms and ideas..
which is the most important ,as it is the only one that is really real..

Now don't that boggle the mind just a tad :)

This the same thing we do when we transcend the here and now by
" standing in a place outside of time and space...
in the circle of power where sensation of the mundane...has no sway."

By the Mothers Grace :) this is the essence of the rites and the Craft

Or another well known:

Aristotle

" The highest form is that of the Good,
which is the ultimate basis of all the rest,
and the first cause of being and knowledge.

Ideas derived from the impressions of the senses
can never give us the knowledge of true being --
i.e. of the forms. It can only be obtained
by the soul's activity within itself.

;There is nothing in the world with
any independent existence:
all is bound together by
an inalterable chain of causation."
;

The world of the here and now can only be held in our hands...
but to make contact with the divine we must leave; that and go after
the real deal...the space where the reality of things exists.

Neoplatonism

( And no it does not stand for something current as in new the word is new but it stands for
Neo Plato = Platonic philosophy as studied in the 3rd century AD, after Plato's death, till about 567 CE )

The idea that all things are one and related to each other:

. At the summit of existence stands the One or the Good,
as the source of all things. It creates from itself, reason,
which contains the infinite store of ideas.

The Soul, the copy of reason, creates matter...
which, constitutes bodies ,which contain the soul.

Nature, therefore, is a whole, endowed with life and soul.

The Soul, being chained to matter, longs to escape from the bondage of the body and return to its original source.
In virtue and philosophic thought soul has the power to elevate itself above the reason into a state of ecstasy
, where it can behold, or ascend up to, that one good primary Being,; whom reason
( meaning the senses of the mind...) cannot know.

Even thou they were fatalists, who felt the world was a place to escape from
if you ignore that....the concepts are still valid for us today.

The way of the force would fit right in here without a hiccup.
as it's where the idea came from to begin with

That all things are side by side in form, time and space,
that there is no empty space , so all things are interrelated...

And that the reality of a person.. is not the crude matter
of which they are made .. but the spirit which is eternal
and rejoins the light when it's time in the vessel of the body is done.

But unlike the fatalist sophists
we are in no hurry to get there...:)



Then there is the Philosophy across the ocean
of our Eastern Brethren

The Tao Te Ching : or the way

The Tao that can be followed is not the eternal Tao.
The name that can be named is not the eternal name.
The nameless is the origin of heaven and earth
While naming is the origin of the myriad things.
Therefore, always desireless, you see the mystery

While the Tao was a guideline on what makes a sage.....

;The concept that the Tao is nameless, formless,
the force that binds the universe together..
sound familiar..?; And much much more...

Yoda and Buddha would have gotten along just fine don't ya think ? :)


To a good translation I have posted..
Tao De Ching

For a very large repository
on hermetic and mystical thought see:
a very well made site

http://www.plotinus.com/index.html

For a very good resource for those who want to know more:
The Internet encyclopedia of Greek philosophy

http://www.utm.edu/research/iep/g/greekphi.htm#Aristotle



I hope this page gives you an idea of classical thought
and how it relates to the Craft and how we ...
as a people, think about our world and how it all works. ..at least some of us...:)

For those who are interested enough to study the matter more ...
I wish you happy hunting and an open mind to new ways of thought.

Enjoy yourself..


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