Wednesday, May 04, 2011

The Wizard Speaks

This is the story of a very powerful wizard who, at a crucial moment in human history, when everything has gone to crap from a combination of his sabotage, witless leadership, and the awful burden of a false morality, uses his invincible magical spell to sieze control of all the world's radios.

The speech he gives is a little like one of those you hear from the dirty and wild-haired homeless man on the street corner.  There is a lot of talk how everybody is getting just what they deserve for believing some theory of existence other than his, and then he expounds that theory at considerable length.  

I shouldn't be too hard on the author. These are the heartfelt thoughts of an original and fairly intelligent erson who has worked hard to develop a theory of human nature from scratch.It's passionate, rising ocassionally to something approaching eloquence, but ultimately I am reminded of the review that goes something like this: "this work contains material that is both correct and original. Unfortunately, the correct parts are not original and the original parts are not correct." Let me give some samples:

For centuries the battle of morality was fought between those who claimed that your life belongs to God and those who claimed that it belongs to your neighbors-between those who preached that the good is self-sacrifice for the sake of the ghosts in heaven and those who preached that the good is self-sacrifice for the sake of incompetents on earth. And no one came to say that your life belongs to you and that the good is to live it.

Both sides agreed that morality demands the surrender of your self-interest and of your mind, that the moral and the practical are opposites, that morality is not the province of reason, but the province of faith and force. Both sides agreed thant no rational morality is possible, that there is no right or wrong in reason- that in reason there is no reason to be moral.

Whatever else they fought about, it was against man’s mind that all your moralists have stood united. It was man’s mind that all their schemes and systems were intended to despoil and destroy. Now choose to perish or learn that the anti-mind is the anti-life.

…Are you prattling of an instinct of self-preservation? An instinct of self-preservation is precisely what man does not possess. An instinct is an unerring and automatic for of knowledge. A desire is not an instinct…

…The history of man has been a struggle to deny and destroy his mind…

They who pose as scientists and claim that man is only an animal, do not grant him inclusion in the law of existence that they have granted to the lowest of insects.

…existence exists………

…A is A…. ==> You cannot have your cake and eat it, too.

There is a fairly detailed exposition of his[OK, her] epistemology - mostly the sort of thing we all discover by age five. The twin obsessions are the conspiracy to suppress mind and the conspiracy to suppress self-interest - funny, I never really noticed either, and went to a Catholic school.