If you ever thought of becoming a philosopher, now’s the time. In fact, now is the only and last chance you have. The philosophical adventure – many thousands of years old – is about to be shut down for good.
In some idle moment you may have entertained the idea that philosophy is more relevant than any other field of thought. You’re right.
You may have thought it could endow you with semi-mystical capacities, an ability to gaze from the heights, view our own age in the light of other epochs, recognize the triviality of people’s concerns, see through deception, expose absurdity and corruption. It does.
You may have thought philosophy is hard, and entails the careful defining of terms and close logical reasoning. Not at all. Its power is from another world. The sort of power to cut through Covid like a fine-edged sword through a Gordian knot.
There is no shortage of people who think the above is cobblers. With a rhetorical flourish they will say, “What use is philosophy today?” Or, less tactfully, “You’re wasting your time”. The late theoretical physicist Steven Hawking said philosophy is dead.
We need waste no time on those who missed their chance at philosophy by permitting science and rationality to pinion them. This is for people who want to fly.
Philosophy is two Greek words combined: philia, love, and Sophia, wisdom. Revisiting the famous home of philosophy, ancient Greece, you might be forgiven for believing that Plato, who has Socrates skilfully expose others’ faulty thinking, held reason to be supreme. Take a closer look at the dialogues. The truths of greatest importance are not reasoned at all, but shown by way of simile and metaphor – the poet’s way.
Unless we appreciate what is going on here, we will be hopelessly drawn off course. What puts Plato in the clearest possible light as an opponent of rationalism is this:
There is an eye of the soul which is more precious far than ten thousand bodily eyes, for by it alone is truth seen.”
This poetic language can be rendered another way. Consider the human faculties ranged in a hierarchy: the senses, then imagination, then reason (dianoia in Greek) and above that, nous, or intuitive perception (Intellectus in Latin). CS Lewis used to tell his Oxford students that nous is not for things of this world. To have the reality of such a faculty affirmed can have a profound effect.
One pupil, who later became a Sufi, recalled that it was “like a flash of lightning … for I had never before heard of the intellect in its true meaning. It was something wonderful, and in a sense I never recovered”.
How to describe the world that opens to intuitive perception? And what is human life like when nous is inactive? Plato tells us in one of the most illuminating allegories in literature.
Imagine, says Socrates, we are prisoners in a deep cave, shackled by the foot and the neck and facing the wall of the cave. Behind us is a track with a raised parapet, and behind that a blazing fire. Along the track come figures holding puppets aloft.
The shadows of the puppets and what they hold – cast upon the wall before us – are all we ever see because we cannot turn. Though there is a way out of the cave – a long slope upward to daylight – right now this is the only reality we know.
It’s a disturbing image, and it’s meant to be. It should make us want to do everything we can to wake from our torpor and seek the Light.
Clearly, Plato envisaged the possibility of escape from this bleak situation. The shackles are self-imposed. For hundreds of years – long after Plato and his great Academy were distant memory – philosophers sought to promote a knowledge of the ‘Sun’ and our freedom to strive for an enlightened state. Plato would not have foreseen that this knowledge might be forgotten, the quest given up. Or that the cave might be sealed.
Freedom is a funny thing. It’s not for everyone. Especially not for those who think they’re already free. Long ago, in opposition to the true philosophers, a minority decided the most laudable aspect of the Classical Greek heritage was its use of inductive and deductive reasoning to fathom reality – empiricism. They named it ‘natural philosophy’, and then ‘science’.
By the twentieth century, Bertrand Russell had determined that the facts of science easily trumped the wild speculations arising in the brains of the ancients. Wittgenstein believed the very limit to the expression of sensible thought lay in the propositions of science; the rest was nonsense.
Their writings, full of the idea of freedom, contain almost no philosophy at all.
Cave dwelling, since the advent of modern science, has been celebrated. Practising the most elaborate mental gymnastics ever conceived, troglodytes are prepared to discount inner or subjective knowledge, while imagining real knowledge is a sort of consensus drawn from whatever observables appear on the cave wall.
Understandable, then, that today many of the imprisoned are members of the Cave Sitters’ Club of Freedom-Loving Individuals. Dedicated to promoting the merits of cave life, instructing the young on what’s real and what isn’t, and tackling dissenters, it has a very wide following. Here is an example of woke cave culture.
Philosophy for Kids During Lockdown
(NewsGuard rating: Satire – not assessed according to the nine journalistic criteria because it is not real news)
1. Can you see a pattern in the following historical incidents?
- a) The Papal Bull of 1484 identified the existence of countless witches all over Europe.
- b) The 1504 da Vinci globe identified the existence of ferocious dragons at the limit of Asia.
- c) The WHO, whose logo is a snake on a stick, declared in 2020 the existence of a deadly coronavirus all over the world.
Answer: They all involve animals.
2. Which of the following should you rate the most trustworthy?
- a) Socrates, who said, “I know that I know nothing”
- b) the mate who’s never let you down
- c) doctors Ferguson and Fauci, who said, “I don’t always get it right, but I know a hell of a lot of stuff”
Answer: c); the others know bugger all.
3. Which is the odd one out?
- a) In the Milgram experiment people were persuaded to follow orders by authority figures in white coats.
- b) In the coronavirus experiment people were persuaded to follow orders by authority figures in black uniforms and chequered caps.
- c) In Star Wars people were persuaded to follow orders by authority figures in white plastic suits
Answer: b); the police are just ordinary citizens in uniform.
4. Without leaving the safety of your home, consider the following:
- a) dangerous picnics in the park
- b) being dragged around by police, forcibly masked, cuffed, and fined for breaking curfew
- c) meeting up with other bio-weapons in the pub
5. Without thinking, tick the following boxes:
- a) I’d like to see Greta or Jacinda as President of Earth. □
- b) Willy, Zuck, and Klaus are making the world a better place. □
- c) Everything about modern science is cool. □
- d) Old people are not that important. □
- e) Cows and sheep are annoying bastards. □
- f) Freedom and individual sovereignty are passé. □
- g) I’d like a world with zero carbon. □
6. Is there a pattern here?
- a) Overuse of antibiotics causes resistant bacteria.
- b) Overuse of Roundup causes resistant weeds.
- c) Overuse of vaccines causes resistant viruses.
Answer: No; c) is still wild conjecture.
7. Identify the fallacy here.
- a) If you magnified an ant 240 (1 trillion) times it would appear dangerous.
- b) If you magnified bits of virus 240 times it would appear dangerous.
- c) If Willy Gates magnified the contents of his piggy bank 240 times, he would appear dangerous.
Answer: b); a virus is not a living thing.
8. Are these two statements compatible?
- a) We’ve survived for hundreds of thousands of years with viruses.
- b) From tomorrow, we won’t be able to survive without vaccines for viruses.
Answer: Yep. As David Hume pointed out, the fact that the sun has risen every day so far doesn’t imply it will rise tomorrow.
9. Alarming statistics to make you think.
In the UK, in the first month of 2020, 50,000 people died. After another month the figure had risen to 100,000. By the end of the year, it was 600,000. At this rate the entire present population of Britain – 67 million people – will be dead in a little over 100 years.
10. Are the following statements examples of well-known logical fallacies?
- a) Vaccines have not been proved dangerous; therefore, they must be safe.
- b) We must lock everyone up or deaths will increase.
- c) The vaccines will work because America is great.
- d) Piers Corbyn and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. are known conspiracy theorists so what they say about vaccines can be ignored.
- e) Deaths fell after lockdown so lockdown worked.
- f) Surveys show that primary school children are more likely to be mask wearers than university students. Therefore, the lower the level of education the more likely it is that people will do the right thing.
Answer: Under normal circumstances perhaps. However, Chris Whitty, Antony Fauci, and Paul Kelly are not philosophers.
11. Masks are very useful things. Without removing your mask, try entertaining the following subversive ideas:
- a) Masks don’t stop viruses.
- b) Masks are tools of oppression and inhibit human interaction and the effectiveness of protest against the Covid cult.
- c) Masks cause breathing difficulties and confused thinking.
Were you successful? Please see the teacher after class.
12. Which is the odd one out?
- a) Tobacco companies have made very dangerous products for money and tried to cover it up.
- b) Pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer have made very dangerous products for money and tried to cover it up.
- c) Chemical companies have made very dangerous products for money and tried to cover it up.
Answer: b) can no longer be sued.
13. Spend one hour studying the ABC and BBC factchecker sites to find out where you went wrong. If you now voiced the view that PCR tests are totally misleading, asymptomatic infection is nothing to worry about, and there are hundreds of deaths and hundreds of thousands of adverse reactions because of the vaccine, you would be responsible for:
- a) stirring up trouble
- b) providing useful information that might avoid future tragedy
- c) preventing the progress of science
- d) embarrassing journalists at the ABC and BBC
- e) embarrassing well-meaning vaccine companies
- f) embarrassing Matt Hancock (even more)
Answer: All of the above except b), an example of narcissism, cockiness, and quite possibly psychosis.
14. What are the best vaccination centres for Covid?
- a) churches, mosques, and temples
- b) vaccination centres
- c) doctor’s surgeries
Answer: a), since all religions were cults in the first place.
15. Australia has a population of about 26 million. Only 0.0035% have died with Covid. Despite multiple lockdowns, and relentless attempts to find people about to die with Covid, it has proved almost impossible to bring the numbers up. Yet the country has secured 195 million vaccine doses. Rank the following reasons in order of likelihood?
- a) It’s planning ahead for killer variants. □
- b) Australians are not good at maths. □
- c) The population may grow faster than anticipated. □
- d) America told them to do it. □
- e) It may take more than two attempts to kill you (at 40:20). □
16. The Queen has suggested that if you get the vaccine you’re thinking of others; if you don’t, you’re selfish. Could this be an example of the excluded middle or false dichotomy fallacy?
Answer: No, this is the Queen remember!
How can we tell we are anything other than shackled in ignorance? That we are not fantasizing over a non-existent ‘Sun’, or its light which is nous? That we have the ability to escape? In short, how do we know we have the makings of a philosopher?
It’s quite simple. Plato’s world is where three timeless and transcendent verities come together: the True, the Good, and the Beautiful.
And so, an attraction for what is true or real, to honesty and integrity, an inclination to kindness and goodwill, a sense of empathy, a love of beauty and the desire to create it, a sense of the sacred, and an orientation towards the world of the Spirit, are signs of that higher reality.
Fittingly nous has a long use in English culture as intelligence, good judgement, or common sense. Perhaps it was common once. Those sensitive to the Platonic values are today on the fringes, pushed there by hard-nosed scientifically-minded types.
When I began perusing alternative media sites as the Covid narrative took shape, I realized that the most interesting section of any article was the comment section below it. These forums are one locus of a heightened awareness, of common sense.
Here, a clear-eyed apprehension of untruths, deceit, and corruption is matched by a heart-felt concern for human welfare and an aspiration to the good and beautiful world we know is possible. Read them and weep. Whether expressed as lament, in gentle irony, in anger, with deep sadness, or to console or encourage, they are a sign that nous is operating.
This is what it means to turn from the cave wall and face the puppets.
If Plato were around today, he might invoke the sitting room with the wall-sized plasma TV for his allegory. Socrates, discoursing on delusion, would find in Covid not just the perfect example of false perception but the ideal goad to rouse us from insensibility.
For here, in high definition, the images become comical, absurd, grotesque. The head-and-shoulder glove-puppet government ministers, the scientific advisers like wooden marionettes, and the sanctimonious media dolls, could inspire philosophers by the score.
Time to Leave
Groucho Marx said, “I wouldn’t belong to any group who would have me as a member”. Philosophers are ludicrously independent. They will not start a club of philosophers, since any group is subject to group think. Philosophers are focused on waking up to Reality. They may be interested in what cave-sitters believe, but not in what they are doing.
Jung favoured individual over collective consciousness. And Henry Corbin said philosophers are always moving on. You are on your own. Therefore, be satisfied with a group of one, for here free thought prevails.
In Jacindaland, the prime minister would make of her country a ‘team of five million’. This doesn’t sound philosophical. Teams, by definition, must work together, extinguishing individuality for an abstract goal.
To launch a $25 million ad campaign to oh-so-cleverly swing things your way, get people to think and do exactly what the Covid narrative dictates, is to forget that the one thing a nation of individuals should be allowed is to make up their own mind. Before your nation of individuals has been trained in appropriate group behaviour, you may have a problem with recalcitrants.
When the realization that they’ve been duped hits home – as, alas, it usually does – unfortunately, for you, your trained nation of individuals may not be on your side.
If you seek truth, stop assuming you already have it, or that you know best. Avoid the pitfalls of argument and debate and try philosophical dialogue instead, an ongoing unjudgmental attempt to uncover truth, rather than learning a few dubious facts from the WHO and then trying to brow beat those around you into accepting that you’re right.
This highest form of conversation, cautiously assesses the facts of today, the facts of yesterday, human psychology, history, humour, life and death, life on Earth, other times, other worldviews, other worlds, ultimate reality, and on into the late afternoon.
If you find you never quite decide on anything – good. You will ensure that Covi never gets a foothold and it will be time for tea.
Effortlessly you will be able to reinstate the world as it was, laugh as the dictatorial Punch and Judy puppets bump each other on the head, and move on.
Phrenology – the study of bumps on the head to determine psychological attributes – once all the rage, eventually got a bad name. And rightly so; you can’t measure things that way. However, the principle is sound.
Study carefully the faces – especially the eyes – mannerisms, and speech of the Covid puppets and you’ll begin to realize there’s such a thing as effortless intuition. You can’t teach this perception, but you can foster it. It is no more than comparing what one sees and hears with an internalized template of Truth and Goodness.
Specializing puppets of the Ferguson type, wearied by their own expertise, commonly display zero empathy. The opaque, lightless stare of a Fauci Napoleonic puppet tells you they are immune to common sense and balance. A Hancock puppet, complacent in its complete lack of expertise, finds displaying genuine emotion a hazardous enterprise. Jack-in-the-box puppets pompously deliver advice right, left and centre. The Willy-G version manifests as a schoolboy with too much pocket money who just wants to be loved.
A Boris clown puppet, seemingly bent on winning hearts in the Covid circus tent, is routinely set upon by other clowns, who light the firecracker in his back pocket. Incorrigible Blair puppets morph over time into miniature demons. A Tedros puppet presents as a fatherly figure, but is in reality a prototype robo-puppet, its sincerity setting dialled way up. Klaus puppets, you will note, have their right brain switched off.
If your response is, “I thought we’d gone beyond simplistic judgements based on how someone looks or speaks”, then you have just discovered philosophy is not for you.
To find their way out of the cave, philosophers must be prepared to commit intellectual infanticide. Not only unafraid to examine their most cherished beliefs, they will be keen to challenge them. Here are four examples of what I mean, chosen almost at random.
I spent thirty years as a vegetarian, utterly convinced it was the best idea I’d ever had, only to find that carbohydrates (everything except meat and fat) are problematic. In excess, they are responsible for multiple health issues. And they cause alarming obesity.
Anyone who can seriously entertain the fact that for thousands of years we were relatively healthy and in the past few decades, through no fault of our own, we’re getting fatter and sicker, are not in love with philosophy, but cognitive dissonance.
Switch to fats and meat and the first thing that happens is you get back the body you had when you were nineteen. The next is that aches and pains disappear along with a host of encroaching ailments. And you can think properly. If you want to see what people looked like not that long ago, check out TV shows from the 70s – the original Star Trek say, or British sitcoms.
If you want to know what happens to the brain deprived of adequate access to long chain fatty acids, consider the recent decline in reasoning ability or the ever more pervasive infantilism.
Consider the fact that we worship a national health service, which communicates through cartoons, by standing in the street and applauding. Or that we think heroes are guys who walk in circles or voluntarily submit to untrialled vaccines.
Consider that Veganism, an entirely modern experiment in nutrition deprivation, is so lacking in essential fats it can make your brain shrink.
2. Climate Change
I spent a similar period of my life convinced the ecosphere was about to break down, and we were responsible. Devastating global warming and sea level rise were imminent. In the 80s I wrote papers and a thesis based on this premise. I pored over IPCC data.
For years I asked my mother to check and report on the advancing tide levels on the shore below her house. Nothing. Then my sister was co-opted. Nada. Not a single inhabited island has gone under, and fifty-degree days are as rare as ever. It could all happen tomorrow. But which tomorrow exactly?
Understanding the Earth System is not rocket science. It makes rocket science look like designing a new dunny float valve. Ludicrously complex interactions operate within the ecosphere, most of which we hardly begin to understand.
Yet, each time we notice something new in Nature, we decide it is unprecedented, imagine the worst, and crank out a computer model which confirms that it is very bad indeed. And panic.
James Lovelock has spent half a lifetime warning about how precarious is Gaia’s life sustaining ability. But which is more likely?
That a ball of rock muddles along for 4 billion years propagating life, even producing consciousness from matter, all the time rallying against the onslaught of a pesky sun which keeps getting hotter – and then is defeated by some bipeds?
Or that a staggeringly complex sphere of light, long the symbol of divinity, whose structure and operation mirrors that of a brain, its emissions embracing and connecting with Earth, initiates, upholds and guides life?
A modest proposal: Would it be a better idea to look at the certain technological causes of the problems we have? Unrelenting attacks on the Earth and its lifeforms by the military-industrial complex, say. Attacks by international mining companies, oil companies, logging companies, agribusiness companies, pesticide companies, and pharmaceutical companies – really any technology driven by greed for profit which, heedless of the interests of other species (and most of our own) degrades or obliterates a beautiful functional world?
3. Young People
When I was ten, I thought the 21-year-old female student teachers who appeared unexpectedly at our school one term were goddesses from another planet. Then I grew up. Which is important if you’re going to be a philosopher. Perhaps we more easily assess and critique our own sex. I long ago learnt to identify the small boy syndrome: men who never matured, becoming either clownish, nerdish, or devilish. Innate proclivities delayed my capacity to discern their counterpart.
A lecturer I knew once remarked that he’d noticed the conclusions men arrive at after hours of careful reasoning, women see intuitively more or less straightway. Wisdom is associated with the feminine. In Ancient Greece, Athena, identified by Socrates with nous or divine intelligence, was the embodiment of Sophia, the inspiration for philosophers. On the other hand, Athena was never a girl.
It is customary to claim that the young are somehow more important or relevant than mature humans. “They’re the future”, “They’re smarter than us”, “You know what my little one said the other day…?” And so on. The logic here is not apparent. Children, charming as they are, haven’t had much time to think.
A twelve-year-old has potential, but their grasp of the world is what you’d expect from a twelve-year-old. They know sod all.
Having less in your mind makes you notoriously conservative. The world you’re born into always seems about right; it’s the way the world works. If there is anything wrong with it, the solution proposed will be simple and straightforward – and most likely what the Establishment is already working on anyway. Idealism often means to be narrowly focused, convinced, and determined.
Greta Thunberg is an interesting example of where you can go with a single-minded kick-ass approach to the world. Her exploits may make one hanker for those halcyon days of wagging school, telling your Oldies where to go, and setting off on a whim on voyages around the world. But, to borrow from Voltaire, though one feels one ought to admire kid’s views, after forty years conversing with adults, I’ve lost the habit.
Young people can’t be philosophers.
Older people have seen a lot, experienced a lot, done a lot. You can’t deny a seventy-year-old has seventy years of experience. On the other hand, you don’t know how long a ten-year-old is going to last. Let’s formulate a simple law: a forty-year-old is four times as relevant as a ten-year-old, a fifty-year-old five times as relevant and so on.
By the time you’re 80 (and haven’t been vaccinated too often) you’ve become an impressive 8 times more relevant. You have your whole life behind you. A white-haired sage, you’ll know which cunning plans tend to go pear-shaped, which ideas won’t work at all, which people would be the best teachers or leaders, and which ones should be given toys to play with instead. You’ve had time to learn that Truth, Goodness and Beauty are not merely words but fundamental principles which preserve the world.
4. Modern Science
I used to think science and science fiction were everything. If you grew up in the Land of the Lotus Eaters when The Ascent of Man first screened, astronauts careened on the moon, colour television and a digital watch were the acme of sophistication, and a PDP 11 was a real presence in the Computer Room, you probably identified with the guys in orange jump suits in Star Wars, and presumed – erroneously as it happens – that the Dark Side was not the West.
For a brief time in the 80s I was a lab assistant at the CSIRO in Tasmania, and this effectively put paid to the idea of Western civilization. We used to drive down to the southern forests to study what happened after clear-felling and incinerating a piece of primeval rainforest.
Just how effective at fixing nitrogen were those little liverworts and mosses that emerged from the ash? We took a map produced by a computer program on which were plotted the exact locations to sample – so many paces north from the big Stringybark stump, so many east from the muddy rivulet, and so on.
One day we forgot the map. My supervisor was in some distress. I said, “Why not just pace out fifty metres along the road and walk ten metres in, and keep going like that?” He stared at me, appalled. More boldly, I said, “The bush doesn’t know it’s supposed to be any different at regular intervals than at random ones”.
The look of horror at experiencing the rigors of the scientific method so casually thrown to the winds was replaced first by the outward signs of a valiant mental battle, and then by acquiescence as common sense returned. He was quiet for some time after though.
It was an early warning of what happens when we submit to the cult of modern science. If you’re not careful, you’ll end up thinking the world really does conform to the internal model you have of it. The model will become what’s real, and Nature just a poor similitude.
The tragedy of scientists is that they almost never look to the philosophy of science. For, of course, science is not an exact knowledge gained from careful study of everything perceived. It’s the sort of knowledge you get when you elect to study only what can be measured.
Forced to start by ignoring most of reality and looking only at the things they could apply a yardstick to, scientists arrived, four centuries later, at the brilliant conclusion that only what can be measured is real.
If you get used to working only in greyscale, it’s unsurprising if you eventually claim the colour button doesn’t do anything.
Non-sensory modes of perception? Higher realities? – what on earth was Plato talking about?
The greatest scientists have always recognized the limitations of their craft. Newton likened his discoveries to a boy picking up shells on the shore of an ocean of truth.
There is nothing inherently illogical about a metaphysical dimension to reality that the methodology of science cannot penetrate. If the universe is structured hierarchically, and if consciousness precedes ‘matter’, then intuitive perception may be nothing less than a link with a higher state of mind.
Philosophers are fortunate people.
The Year of the Cow
By curious coincidence, my four points come together in the time of Covid, and the beginning of a new era. 2021 – the Chinese Year of the Cow, the year of the vaccine (from Latin vacca, cow) – I shall designate Year Zero.
Consider: Willy Gates as philanthrocapitalist (someone who hands out money but always ends up with more) searching for something to do with his life, and devoid of philosophical inclination, hit upon some key initiatives.
Like any profit-oriented scientist, he favours the model that gets you where you want to go. Thus, when it comes to climate change, he is partial to models that predict a piddling gas in the atmosphere is about to blow apart the whole kit and kaboodle, ignores the distinction between cruel, wasteful factory farming and traditional and sane farming practice, and proposes knocking farm animals on the head – ending problematic burping – and switching to artificial meat forthwith, thus weening us off food which kept us going for a million years.
Fascination with epidemics, and injecting people with something, led him to daydreams of global pandemics. Overlooking the fact that almost no one dies from any coronavirus, he pounced on the flawed computer models out of Imperial College. Forecasts of catastrophe always sound impressive, and they’re pretty much essential if you plan to get at everyone on Earth.
Boredom is always a hazard for the mega-rich. In the end, solving the pandemic was just too “easy”. Solving climate change, in contrast, would be “the most amazing thing”. Thinking we didn’t notice that global capitalism, with the technology it wields, has been busy dismantling our world for decades, he proposes introducing even more hi-tech fixes – a sort of vaccination for our ailing planet.
Even a trainee philosopher can see that technology, both child and parent of modern science, always has a downside. Solving one problem we create three more. It takes time for the whole world to be suffering from the negative effects of technology. But eventually it happens.
The inevitable outcome of a materialistic philosophy, wherein sense perception alone is of account and the manipulation of matter lauded, is Klaus Schwab’s ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ – the debasement of humanity and indifference to handing control over to soulless machines.
Although I’m against AI generally, I would make one exception: buses. A super-intelligent bus, wholly autonomous and with an advanced sense of ethics, rolling around the streets of Davos, could quickly solve some of the world’s most recalcitrant problems. And in London we could answer a long-standing riddle: Boris may love buses, but do buses love him?
Perhaps glasses – of the oversized Willy Gates or Neil Ferguson variety – could be similarly endowed, effortlessly producing the seeing conditions suited to AI buses. What about an AI-controlled Air Force One? Or perhaps the entire Learjet and Gulfstream fleet?
Philosophers, ever observant, will have noticed the plethora of neotenous female puppets who have been rising above the parapet during Year Zero, to prominence in the mainstream media, universities, business, politics, and in unelected busybodies such as the WHO.
Scarily, these long-haired sirens hold aloft syringes, contact tracing apps, and green passports, luring us to take the jab with promises of freedom and fun, and warnings of peril if we listen to anti-vax conspiracy theorists.
This might have been planned by a man. Actually, it was. Klaus – a sort of anti-philosopher – started the Forum of Young Global Leaders in 2004, and a global movement of young Shapers in 2011, to help him engineer the future. You’re not supposed to be in it after you’re 30, perhaps because Klaus thought this was the age when a healthy suspicion of ‘what the hell is going on’ kicks in.
By 2020, Klaus’s ongoing commitment to young people telling adults what to do, led him to ensure ten teenage change-makers were at Davos that year, later hailing Greta (17) as “the voice of an entire generation’’.
While Thunberg’s tirade at the UN has been compared to the Gettysburg Address, it more easily compares with your teenage daughter’s carefully choreographed tantrum. With this sort of confidence in the capacity of youth to speak for our future, there seems no good reason not to include pre-teens and even toddlers in 2022.
Young men, said Helena Norberg-Hodge, are the weakest link in a culture. We have to update that because we shouldn’t be sexist. The young women who run organizations like NewsGuard, write Coronavirus pieces for ABC’s Fact Check, or front once-credible BBC programmes like Panorama, still finding their way in a world whose real workings they know almost nothing of, display what has been called Young Girlism. “Childlike, sentimental, and eminently prepared to relinquish heretofore absolute values”, they are in a pre-philosopher stage.
In the infamous Panorama edition of February 2021, Vaccines: The Disinformation War, we find those who could have been intrepid truth-seekers have settled for Establishment propaganda, accidental puppets of dark agendas they may never understand – a fate easily circumvented if only they’d opted for a degree in Ecophilosophy.
Spring, shot in soft focus, in low light, and in an almost-erotic plastic face shield, may also singlehandedly be credited with overcoming vaccine hesitancy in at least 50 percent of the viewing audience – which is a further indictment of the BBC.
I would love to believe these muses are all prodigies from Oxbridge and the Ivy League, replete with perspicacity, able to identify all that is wrong with the world, and plan and implement utopia. But for this to happen I would also have to believe that 27-year-olds have suddenly acquired capacities unknown to all preceding generations.
Philosophers must be prepared to be disappointed.
My earliest memory of the word ‘Australia’ was as part of an oft-repeated refrain by an Irish Patrician Sister at my primary school: “Wake up Australia!”
I see now what she was on about. Most Australians I know believe that, due to a brilliant strategy, they have escaped the worst effects of the pandemic. Since the effects of the ‘pandemic’ are vaccines, a restructured society, and loss of freedom and livelihoods as ‘zero-covid’ morphs into ‘zero-carbon’, this assessment is a tad inaccurate.
Outwitting a virus is like outwitting your cat. It all seems to be going well until you ask: Which one of you gets to eat for free as well as deciding the menu, commandeers the most comfortable places in the house, has doors and windows opened for them on whim, and has unencumbered access to all the neighbour’s properties?
We know now that the pandemic would disappear like mist before the morning sun the minute PCR tests, never a medical diagnostic tool, were abandoned and we re-instated the old-fashioned idea of checking for signs and symptoms.
Fear would go soon after masks were removed, government and media stopped toying with the public and the WHO with the Greek alphabet, and we took a sober look at the death figures. Pandemic years are not ones where all-cause mortality is about normal.
‘Vaccines’, by contrast, are all too real. The universal roll-out of experimental gene therapy via injection may become the Great Crime of modern science, presaging the most insidious future imaginable.
It is one thing to be concerned about physiological damage or the death of a minority. What if mRNA jabs initiate more subtle, and universal, effects? Long-term impairment of our immune system, say? Permanent alteration of our genetic code? Or of human mentation? Would we then know what had happened to us?
Over a hundred years ago the mystic Rudolph Steiner had a shot at one potential of vaccines: inoculation against an aspiration toward spirituality or the philosophical life.
The puppeteers in Plato’s allegory are invisible, the unseen forces that delude us. Much fuss is made attempting to match these forces to shadowy individuals or secret cabals bent on manipulation and control for their own ends.
But in fact, there is no secret. And they aren’t invisible. To a philosopher on the upward slope turning to glimpse the puppets from behind, the figures who manipulate them represent an absence or void in the soul. They are beings in whom a sense of the Good, True and Beautiful has been dimmed, even extinguished, as a candle its flame. Opposed to the highest ends of humanity, seeking to disrupt it, and life itself, they must be considered enemies of enlightenment. Klaus has assembled the most influential club of such individuals. It is known as the WEF.
A sobering passage in the Hermetica recounts Hermes being chastised for assuming that everyone is endowed with nous. We can ask: When have there not existed power-hungry individuals bent on controlling the planet and its people for their own use?
Look to their visions cast upon the cave wall. You’ll see all that is antagonistic to human flourishing. A celebration of war and violence.
Ever more technology to deplete or obliterate life by poisoning our environment, bodies, and minds. A celebration of childish pursuits. Of liberalism to the point of overthrowing all traditional cultural patterns. The extolling of authorities and experts over individual autonomy and common sense. Language used to obfuscate and mislead.
Worst of all, the attempt to divert us from an understanding of what the human being is in essence, by fostering a wholly materialistic outlook, turning our gaze entirely earthward. If this had not been done first, submission to the dictates of Year Zero could not have happened.
From Year Zero, the Gates of Hell are Wide Open
The propagation of a global vaccination programme, digital tagging, ceaseless tracking, monitoring, and controlling, are signs of the endgame. Our moves are becoming more and more limited. Our sovereign being is about to be toppled.
We don’t yet know whether the current mRNA injections have the capacity to disrupt catastrophically. But the momentum is set. The variants, real or imaginary, will keep coming, providing a never-ending reason for more and different ‘vaccines’. The future envisaged by the bio-tech industry is in no way harmonious with our nature. Naively we may urge caution, seek debate, even call for some backtracking. Yet, who is listening?
A fateful divide is growing every day. There seems no middle ground. Leaping with Klaus, we enter a world that would redesign us out of existence. Remembering what we are and our highest values, the natural, meaningful, often graceful world known to our parents and to all generations before them beckons.
Of course, to a philosopher there is no choice. It is like being asked about joining a suicide cult. Biotechnology, along with so many emerging technologies, promises nothing good. Extreme evil is no longer a thing of the past. Unless we seek its end, we drift toward our own. The cave will be our home forever.
Exiting the Cave
We could never have imagined the Enemy coming like this. Yet, in hindsight, an ‘invisible and silent killer’, fear, and a remedy equally invisible and incomprehensible is the perfect way of attempting the subjugation of humanity.
Happily, Schwabian lifeforms, deprived of light, always miss something. Coronavirus may be a great opportunity to reset society. But what Klaus didn’t anticipate was Covid becoming a catalyst allowing time for people to find out what he and his mates were up to. And philosophers to thrive.
All who defy the ludicrous dreams of the inhuman are the heroes of our time, courageous souls who stand against efforts to control and coerce. The Good, the True and the Beautiful have ever been the templates for an authentic society, the gauge against which we assess the worthiness of the actions of those around us and especially the worthiness of those who would lead us. Whoever sees this must reject the Covid doctrine and the ‘New Normal’, denounce Year Zero, deride attempts to snuff out the light, and kick away the stone being rolled across the cave entrance.
Today, the precious few who first made a stand have become the many. In the great demonstrations and marches across the world, the human spirit shines. On a sea of faces is reflected a consciousness of the light. What are they if not philosophers? Lovers of wisdom who choose the upward path.
John Griffin is an artist, writer, and farmer. His books include On the Origin of Beauty, and a prophetic novel, Ex Solaris Essentia.
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