To Sow the Dragon’s Teeth: Hegel’s Invocation of the Spirit of Modernity, pt.1
KT presents new series of podcasts on Hegel’s speculation as a prototype of modern metaphysics. It will include reflections on some remarkable spiritual forms of modernity and their disturbing congeniality with its “dark side” of totalitarian ideologies, mass warfare and nihilism. The podcast is partially inspired by Glenn Maggee’s book “Hegel and Hermetic Tradition” although with reservations due to author’s superficial understanding of some thinkers he considers Hegel’s predecesors, as we will point out in this episode. Hegel is unique in that he wanted to build the bridge between Tradition and modernity and not simply make a radical, yet superficial, cut more characteristic of Enlightenment and scientism, that are more in vogue nowadays mostly due to dominance of modern Anglo-Saxon culture and mass appeal it still holds. This is the common trait he shares with the greatest minds and artistic talents of past 200 hundred years, especially his German contemporaries and their late 19th and pre WWII successors. However, we’ll attempt to show that his unequivocal choice of modernity and its promise of ultimate resolution of the past in the ascension of man to identity with the creative “Spirit of the world” is precisely the “mark of Cain” that cannot be erased and is a taint shared by such diverse figures as Thomas Mann and Alfred Rosenberg; moreover, we’ll suggest that this is were the true spirit of modernity should be sought because, after all, the deviation is always primarily inner and only secondarily an external reality – in a word: it is a form of metaphysics. And not all of its fruits are bitter. Its only that they all seem to be poisonous.
Transcript will be provided soon
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So it seems this whole “conflict” with Modernity vs. Tradition, at least partially, revolves around question how we conceptualize relation between Origin and Creted/Creation where Traditionalists are concerned to keep “creatures ” -God’s or otherwise -within their “proper” place. Without too much mystifying I hope everyone can agree that might be the central or almost central issue?
Underlying issue is, also can be said, kind of fear of vanity or pride that can be roused in a “creature ” if it in any sense tried to get in any form of relation towards Supreme other than submissive, secondary, non-contributory so to speak.
So, the main question is actually this- do we need Traditional God in order to keep in check human Narcissism which inevitably inflates once “God is killed”.
Without ambition to go deeper in this short comment I would just add an observation that is that I see some peculiar similarity between let’s say “materialistic ” worldview and more Traditional interpretation of the Man’s “position ” in the universe.
Namely both end up in “non-contributory” or “insignificance ” key. Since,it is impossible to establish ” meaning” within indifferent universe of Atoms, similarly it is quite difficult to explain what Absolute “gets” from bothering with Relative.
The way out of this unpleasant indifference is idea of “accidental evolution” in materialistic/modernistic key, while in Tradition I suppose we have notions of “Love”, “compassion ” or “mercy” towards the creatures trapped in relative Samsara or Samsara of the relative.
I see Hegel and some others as basically searching for a third way – that usually offers “participation ” or even equivalence (? gnostic boogieman no-no..) qualitative at least with overall World Process .