Learning to understand our 'now' as a cycle that's repeating in Time
Posted by queridia at 12:33 AM
Food for thought: Arnold Toynbee's book, Greek Thought contains selections from the writings of some Greek historians that he believed wrote about history honestly. I want to present one selection:
The Burden of Rome, from Polybius Book VI, Chapter 57 because the content is specific and it reads as a description of our present global condition:
"The disintegration and transformation to which everything in the Universe is exposed may really be taken for granted as a self evident corollary to the Uniformity of Nature. There are however two possible processes by which the disintegration of any given type of commonwealth may be effected—one external and the other internal; and while the external process is not amenable to scientific study, the internal obeys fixed laws."
"I have already described the successive phases of political development and the transitions from one phase to the other, sufficiently to enable readers capable of drawing the logical deductions from the present inquiry to forecast the future for themselves. In my opinion the future is clear.
In the case of any commonwealth which has repelled a series of acute dangers and has subsequently attained to a position of undisputed predominance and supremacy, it is evident that the violent influx of prosperity will produce a more extravagant standard of living and an excessively keen competition between individuals for office and other objects of ambition. "
"As these tendencies develop, a process of deterioration will be initiated by the thirst for office and the reproach of an undistinguished career, as well as by the pretentiousness and extravagance of the standard of living."
"The nominal responsibility for this transformation will attach to the masses, when they are inspired with a sense of injustice by the material greed of some of their masters, and with a false conceit by the material greed of some of their masters, and with a false conceit by the insincerity of others in pursuit of a political career. At this point the masses become so intensely exasperated and so completely guided by passion that they repudiate all subordination to or even equality with the upper classes and identify the interests of the community with their own."
"When this point is reached the commonwealth acquires the flattering appellations of liberty and democracy, while it is subjected to the appalling reality of the ‘despotism of the crowd.’"
There are so many changes that are happening in our 'now' stream of events, but there are more people alive now than have ever been alive that collectively know much more about life on this planet. There are more who can read and who do read and think for themselves, (lots of them are like me a female that had a real world problem that led to discovering her own thoughts have never been recorded in his story, history being his story, not her story. )
There is a mystery behind those changes but many individuals are working on what the 'mystery' is, and experiencing it in a personal situation. If its the same now as it was then when that historian descript how a democracy is initiated, a person has to wonder why this 'mysterious thing' continues through generations, what it's purpose is, and what it's intending to convey in any 'now. I read that every thing that happens in an individual life happens eventually to the collective, bundled life of 'us', 'we', 'our' experiences cached, stored, batched. That pattern, as a cycle is expressed now, when it was also obvious so long ago at least by Greek historians.
I'm not the first woman to want to understand why the stereotyped patterns about life do not match up as accurate descriptions of every woman's real world experiences. I had a limited social life, in a small town so I heard certain words much of my life that had no masculine counterpart. They were always remarkes made about a female. Until about 1985 when I read a chapter in a book about 'male' menopause. I had never heard 'male' and 'menopause' together! And I had seen the movie, Ash Wednesday which is a graphic movie about 'male menopause' in the exact form it was described in that chapter in a book. Another word was 'neurotic' it was always a female that was neurotic. But the most commonly heard was 'ball breaker'. I had to think for a while to form a masculine counterpart for that phrase, but I'm not going to put it in print.
This post is about cycles in Time, perhaps we on the planet are going through 'mid life crisis', in a state of neurosis and psychosis. The Greek historians knew there was a pattern, a cycle that repeated and that cycle is repeating now. A few educated individuals in the past are still speaking now, thanks to Arnold Toynbee, who wrote about an experience he had, as an eye witness to a scene in which he was in Ancient Rome! The mind itself is under the microscope, in this cycle. How the mind participates in reality is under the microscope of more individuals in this cycle.
There is evidence that the individual experience, can be and should be understood by that individual, and when that happens the realization does mean something that benefits humanity overall. Too much has been written about the 'invisible world' and patterns in the past to dismiss that aspect of life as 'delusional' thinking. More about that later.
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