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An overview of the 1960s and the platos allegory of the cave concepts

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The difficulty of taking the truth back into the cave C1: These words bring us to the final impasse that is encountered in the human journey from ignorance to self-understanding.

When the explanation of the human condition is finally assembled, how is it to be presented to people who have been living in the cave in fear and denial of the whole issue of the human condition? The analogy used earlier was of a country raided for decades by Genghis Khan to the extent that its people had resorted to a life hidden in the forests and caves. It will be a brave person who first ventures beyond their recognised safety zone once it is announced that Genghis Khan has been destroyed and it is now safe to come out of hiding.

In The Republic Plato described the resistance that humans will have to leaving the cave thus: There has been the response of trying to maintain the denials and false arguments that historically have been used to evade the issue of the human condition.

Plato's Middle Period Metaphysics and Epistemology

Some of the denials that have been used to avoid confronting the human condition were mentioned earlier. They include the denial that there is an integrative purpose to existence; that nurturing played the crucial role in the maturation of our species; that humanity once lived in a state of instinctive cooperation; and that humans are extremely alienated and vary greatly in their degree of alienation.

These and many other historic denials and evasions are also referred to in subsequent essays in this book, and addressed in full in Beyond. Another significant response has been one of extreme anger towards the human-condition-confronting information. The following comment by Professor Iain Davidson, who at the time was head of the archaeology and palaeoanthropology department of the University of New England in NSW, Australia, illustrates the fury that extreme Page 146 of Print Edition holism can induce in mechanistic scientists.

In fact people can have such an angry response to the information that they attack the heresy by any means available, including persecuting its supporters—an historic response to unevasive, denial-free truth.

The truth is, Socrates was one of the most honest thinkers in history. His an overview of the 1960s and the platos allegory of the cave concepts and reasoning shattered too many illusions. Page 147 of Print Edition A charge of impiety, of lack of respect for the religious customs of the day, was also made against the supporters of Christianity.

Like Moses, what Christ essentially did was challenge the practice of denial, and that was the real reason he and his supporters were persecuted. Challenging the status quo has led to resistance, persecution and even outright physical attack, due to the fact that humans do not like change, in fact they find any new concept difficult to accept. A new device, a new method of doing something or a new idea or way of thinking will typically be resisted.

For example, when younger, more adaptable minds take up new ways, adherents of the old ways sometimes falsely claim the younger minds have been corrupted.

Historically all new ideas have had to endure initial opposition, and even persecution, from the established order. Humans have been extremely insecure as a result of the human condition, to the extent that any challenge to their particular behaviour or view of the world is perceived as a form of criticism and thus something to be resisted. Note that each stage of recognition is achieved in a way that protects the ego of the onlookers. The extent of insecurity in the human make-up is very apparent.

Page 148 of Print Edition The adjustment that accompanies the introduction of something new has also been difficult for humans because of the problem of habituation. The more humans practice a pattern of thinking and behaving, the more established and automatic it becomes and thus the more difficult it is to alter. On the subject of overcoming a practiced way of thinking and behaving the best book I have come across is Courage to Heal, by Laura Davis and Ellen Bass 1988.

By its nature it is deeply entrenched, set by repetition…Patterns have a life of their own, and their will to live is very strong. To quote from the story: And one person whispered to the other what the child had said. The Emperor writhed, for he knew it was true. The scale of the change involved is also a factor. It follows from what has been said that the greater the change the greater the resistance and the greatest change of all that humans can be confronted with is a change to their world view, their framework or paradigm of thinking.

Even paradigm shifts vary in their degree of difficulty. A paradigm shift which involves little self-confrontation is not as difficult as a paradigm shift where significant self-confrontation is involved.

For instance the shift from the agrarian age to the industrial age in early 19th century England was violently resisted, as epitomised by the Luddites who organised themselves to destroy manufacturing machinery, claiming it put them out of work. A paradigm shift that involves changing from a strategy of living in denial of the human condition Page 149 of Print Edition to one of confronting the human condition is the most difficult paradigm shift of all to make. Religion is about dogma and faith while understanding of the human condition is about knowledge and the psychological amelioration that that knowledge makes possible.

The following quote by journalist Robert Howard adds to the list of world-changing ideas that have occurred with inclusions from relatively recent times.

He starts where Tarnas left off, with the birth of modern science and Copernicus: Nevertheless, Darwin did not address the issue of the human condition. In fact he studiously avoided the subject of human behaviour which, at its core, an overview of the 1960s and the platos allegory of the cave concepts the issue of the human condition. There are no references in his book to human behaviour, apart from references to how humans have been able to alter plant and animal breeds, and a single highly pertinent acknowledgment at the very conclusion: Freud did bring the issue of the human condition into focus, albeit much less directly than Christ.

Humans have practiced many different denials and should you confront them with any one of them they naturally as it has been essential to their lives protect and defend that denial. It follows that with the most important denial practiced by humans, that of the denial of the issue of the human condition, the determination to Page 151 of Print Edition protect and defend it will be the most vigorous.

In fact for some people the temptation to react extremely aggressively towards those who are seen to threaten that denial can be very great. There is one more factor to consider in assessing the difficulty people will have adapting to change, and that is the speed of the change taking place. Some changes are not as sudden as others.

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Humans have had some 2 million years to adjust to living in denial of the human condition however with the arrival of understanding of the human condition there is no such luxury. With such an important explanation now available to humans and the an overview of the 1960s and the platos allegory of the cave concepts for rapid global communication at our disposal, the knowledge will spread with extreme speed once the initial resistance is overcome and so too the process of adjustment will have to be expeditious.

The most difficult change of all for humans to have to adjust to is one that involves the rapid adoption of a completely new way of thinking—a paradigm shift of thought. Moreover, if the old way is an extremely habituated way of behaving, in fact a 2-million-year-old practice, and if what is new is totally exposing and confronting of the all-important denial that humans have been practicing, then the difficulty will be all the more intense.

It therefore has to be expected that nothing will be resisted as fiercely. There is yet another dimension to this difficulty humans have adapting to change. While virtually all adults have been living in denial of the human condition, those who are more corrupted have had to employ more denial than those who are less corrupted to keep the criticism of their corrupted state at bay.

Humans have been living in various degrees of denial and as a result are variously alienated or estranged from their true self or soul. Because change is most threatening to the less secure, it is the less secure who find it most difficult accepting and adapting to change. It follows that while most people feel the need to resist something they fear, those who are most afraid, those who, in the case of the denial of the human condition, are the more alienated in society, will put up the most determined opposition to the arrival of understanding of the human condition.

As will be described in some detail in The Demystification Of Religion essay in this book, the more alienated are initially going to strongly resist having their disguises removed. The last great battle on Earth, referred to in the Bible as the Battle of Armageddon, is in fact the battle between those whose alienation is so great they are afraid to have it exposed and those who are sufficiently free of alienation, sufficiently secure in self, not to be overly afraid of the exposure and therefore able to support and defend the humanity-liberating, all-important breakthrough understanding of the human condition.

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It also needs to be emphasised that alienation tends to increase with age. The longer a person lived in the corrupted, alienated world, the more encounters they inevitably had with that corruption and alienation and the more they became corrupted and alienated themselves as a result. Furthermore, the older a person, the more habituated they had become to living in denial of the issue of the human condition. It follows from what has been said that the people most able to take up and adjust to the arrival of understanding of the human condition will be the more secure or less alienated among young people in society, while the most resistance will come from the more alienated among older people in society.

Historically, for reasons already explained, young people have always been more receptive to new ideas than older people. Older people, because they are more alienated, and because they are more habituated and ego-attached to their existing ways of doing things and thinking, have always found change difficult. We have a saying for the difficulty older people have adopting change: Such a monumental paradigm shift will in fact so test even the adaptability of young people that initially only the soundest amongst them will be able to cope with the change.

The reality is that it is young people who have to take up new ideas. Even scientists, who are supposed to respond objectively to reasoned argument and explanation, can suffer from extreme prejudice against change as they get older. Young people must take up new ideas, this is especially so with the arrival of understanding of the human condition. There is yet another difficulty and indeed extreme danger for the more alienated, in particular some older adults, when understanding of the human condition arrives.

They can wrongfully take on the Page 154 of Print Edition role of guardians for humanity against human-condition-confronting information. The following describes an overview of the 1960s and the platos allegory of the cave concepts nature of this danger. This is problematical in itself however there is a further dimension to the problem that the more alienated pose for the arrival of human-condition-confronting information, which has a compounding effect. While they suffer the most from the deaf effect these people are also the most fearful and thus intuitively aware of, sensitive to, and on their guard against any information that brings the human condition into focus.

Both the deaf effect and sensitivity to any human-condition-confronting information increases with alienation. While historically there was always a need to repress and live in psychological denial of information that brought the human condition into focus but did not explain and resolve it because such information left humans extremely depressed and unjustly condemned for their corrupt, divisive naturewhen the full, dignifying, ameliorating understanding that resolves the human condition arrives, it ends that unjust condemnation.

Not all human-condition-confronting information is dangerous. The human-condition-confronting information that explains the human condition brings an end to the historic criticism of humans and is thus the least dangerous information possible. They will be afraid of the Page 155 of Print Edition information without being able to be enlightened as to its non-fearful true nature. Some of them can even go to war against the information because they see it as unbearable and dangerous for humanity, without realising its immense goodness.

The more alienated are the least able to evaluate the safety or otherwise of human-condition-confronting information, and yet, because of their heightened fear of such information, they tend to put themselves forward as the guardians for humanity, the people who can assess what is good for us all.

But as blind people are not the ones to tell us when the sun is coming up, the alienated are not the ones able to ascertain when the all-wonderful, human-condition-liberating understanding of the human condition has arrived. In their extreme fear and resulting hatred of human-condition-confronting information, and in their delusion about their right to act as guardians for humanity against such information, some more alienated people can be tempted to take it upon themselves to eliminate the information from existence, unwittingly trying to kill the an overview of the 1960s and the platos allegory of the cave concepts that lays the golden egg and destroy the information that liberates humanity from the human condition.

They can make the worst mistake of any human on Earth. The reason it is a crime is that these more alienated people do have a choice; instead of living out their fear of, and anger towards human-condition-confronting information they can trust in democracy. The democratic principle of freedom of expression allows new ideas to emerge and be tested by society as a whole for their value. It ensures that the human journey to greater understanding is not shut down by prejudice.

It is the mechanism that protects humans from the insecure aspects of themselves. The arrival of understanding of the human condition poses the ultimate threat to the status quo, the status quo being the state of living in denial of the human condition. At the very deepest level of its relevance and meaning, democracy has existed to ensure this ultimate threat to the status quo is not stifled before it can emerge. If there were zero tolerance of human-condition-confronting information, then understanding of the human condition could never Page 156 of Print Edition emerge.

  • This is the phenomenon where, with respect to any incomplete property, F, every sensible particular that is F is, in some sense, also not-F;
  • The understanding of the human condition that the WTM supports does challenge the most established way humans manage their world, namely living in denial of the issue of the human condition; however, this challenge comes not from disrespect, but from enlightenment;
  • There are three basic approaches to consider;
  • We may not recklessly pollute the environment, nor waste limited energy resources.

It was as if the founding fathers of the human race knew that one day a crisis point would be reached, a moment when all human frailties would conspire to threaten to shut down the human journey from ignorance to enlightenment, and to ward against that eventuality they implemented the practice of democracy.

Democracy alone had the capability to ensure that human insecurities would not jeopardise the efforts the whole human race has contributed since consciousness emerged, and that understanding of the human condition would be able to emerge. Where human-condition-confronting information is concerned the more alienated amongst us can be especially tempted to dispense with the democratic principle of freedom of expression and to set out to destroy the information by any means available, but in fact it is where human-condition-confronting information is concerned that the principles of democracy need to be the most scrupulously adhered to.

The wisest and most important legal counsel ever given was that given by a lawyer named Gamaliel during the birth of Christianity. His counsel was essentially to trust in the principles of democracy to ascertain what was of value to humanity and what was not.