- Charter of Transdisciplinarity

          ɡ

 

Special Issues

   - The Book Shop

The Golden Register -

 

Useful Sites

F.A.Q.

Index

 

 Maaberuna

english arabic
 

Trans-cultural Understanding

or

Varieties of Cultures and Oneness of Human Thought

 

Nadra al-Yazeji

 

Into my innermost I entered, seeking my own truth and the originality of my thought; in the depth of my inner Self, I found varieties of opinions, ideas and creeds and a unity underlying the various facets of human thought. I then came to understand that my mind is a synthesis of various cultures.

In my being, different views, eastern and western, are assembled. They are associated and interrelated, and even identified, with myself. In fact, I have cultivated them in the garden of my soul where different kinds of flowers grow intimately within the beauty of diversity and plurality. However, I kept an empty space to be planted with new flowers which will come into being, or with the roses whose real scent I have not previously recognized and whose deep secret I have not yet unraveled. Then I came to understand, the moment my consciousness was awakened, that the flowers and roses planted in my garden do not realize their unity or integrate into a harmonious whole unless I am able to establish a correspondence between them and establish a common background. In the garden of my intellect, varieties of creeds and doctrines gather together in the sphere of beauty and enjoy the greatness and splendor of the meeting.

In my being, various cultures congregate in order to form a center where different phenomenal realities are complemented and involved. Therein, lies the one Truth that we behold as we go deeper into the substratum of Wisdom which formulates the essential framework of our human existence.

In my being, all the branches of knowledge are unified or interrelated, with no discontinuity, schism or antagonism. This interrelation or continuity refers to the unification of cultures through their various aspects, in a synthesis that culminates in Cosmic Consciousness.

In my being, different cultures are unified. Therein, the values and concepts I have adopted harmonize and cooperate sympathetically and collectively. In addition to that which I have cultivated and grown in my inner mansion, in my esoteric temple, my soul wanders about and settles down in the realms of other cultures contemplating their implications and inhaling the fragrance of their aroma. I have initiated myself into the mysteries of Greek wisdom, as represented in the teaching of the Temple of Delphi and the philosophical schools of Greece which enlightened the paths of human Reason. I entered into the house of Chinese wisdom to get in touch with its thought and moral attitudes and ideal standards. There, I could find the practical application of virtue. I roamed about the different sections of Indian Schools, seeking an access to the truth hidden in their mystery teachings and miraculous deeds. I was introduced into Japanese literature, as represented in the wisdom of Zen and enunciated in its subtle unique orientation. There, I beheld its highly developed discipline and potent affinities. I probed deeply the wisdom embodied in the mysteries of the Egyptian pyramids, seeking the cosmic Truth hidden in them. Then I departed to European thought trying to apprehend the mystery I have sought to unveil.

The memory of my past lives, deeply inscribed in my interior, conducted me to my ancient Eastthe Near East, seeking the truth implied in its GnosisKnowledge, and esoteric lore. Through the pearl of its illumination, I ascended to the zenith of supramental enlightenment. Moreover, I insisted on comprehending the basic principles of Stoicism and Neo-Platonism. I was taught by the philosophers of the Stoic School two important tenets: 1. to love Mankind, 2. to be cosmopolitana citizen of the world.

Mythology drew my attention to its apparent symbolism and intrinsic internal mysticism. So, I became inebriated with the ecstatic representations of Greek, Indian, Egyptian, Canaanite, African, Middle and Southern American myths, such as those of the Aztecs, the Incas, the Amerindians and the Nordic legends. Scrutinizing the Noumenon of their mysteries, it was evident that they were expressions of spiritual aspirations of the ancients. I greatly marveled to discover, in each legend or myth, depth and mystery rooted in the origins of other legends and myths. From the African legends and myths, unjustly and cruelly accused of backwardness and degeneration, I learned a philosophy of life symbolically exemplified. I came to know that full understanding and broad-mindedness bring these symbols together and bind them to one single human truth, referring to varieties of expression and singularity or uniqueness of goal.

Attaining this level of unbiased research and unprejudiced knowledge, I became aware that I am a representative of a planetary culture, whose core is enlightened by my home culture. I felt that other cultures encounter peacefully and lovingly within me, and that outstanding writers, philosophers, scientists, sages, artists, musicians, painters, and men and women of highly elevated character and morality, men and women of all sorts, pertaining to all classes and generations, are alight in my real existence. So, if anybody questions me about Pythagoras, the prominent sage, the eminent mathematician and initiator, this distinguished man attends to the question and replies within me. When asked about Lao-tze, this sage moves in my interior, and the virtue he had expounded to his fellowmen glows inside me. When interrogated about the Buddha, my heart maintains sympathy and compassion for life and all sentient beings, and seeks the realization of enlightenment, bliss and Nirvana. When enquired about Christos, I behold the Divine Manifestation wholly personified. Summoned by Islamic Sufism and Mutazilite philosophy, I attend to the appeal, revering the greatness of human existence verified through a panentheistic, all-pervading, Reality, and cherishing the power of Reason. Regarding the Kabbalah, as exemplified in the Zoharthe book of Splendor, I behold the wisdom inherent in emanation, immanence and manifestation. When demanded to say something about Spinoza, Averroes, Zeno, Philo, Descartes, Epictitus, Sri Aurobindo, Gandhi, Vinobha, Shakespeare, al-Maari, Socrates, al-Hallaj, Rabia al-Adawiyya, Saint Theresa, and the like, every one of them is agitated in my breast and memory, expressing himself or herself through my parole and thought.

I have often asked myself: who is conversing within me? Is it me, or someone else? What is this expression coming up from my inner Self? Am I plural or single? Many or one? Am I divided within myself or unified? Do I contradict, or negate, those who potentially reside in my lodge or do I sympathize with them and am in accordance with their ideas and standpoints? Does not this mean that I stand for a cosmopolitan, composite culture, providing me with the means of thoughtfulness, strength and wisdom? Does my existence bear any significance or value if I am devoid of these various cultures? Does my knowledge and principles resume their effectiveness, if they do not contribute to life-enhancement and the evolution of Mankind?

I came to conclude that my personality is a meeting place where all currents and channels of human knowledge converge in order to concentrate in one single focus, which is me. I also knew that I am a by-product of the congregation and accumulation of the branches of knowledge unified in my being. Finally, I presumed that my body and mind encompass all cultural composite categories, ideals and doctrines cooperating to make of me an illuminated individual.

*

This brief introduction is a preamble to the subject considered therein. To begin our discussion, the following questions must be stated: How do these cultural varieties avail us of benefit if they keep apart in separation, never to mingle in one single identity? What good is there in them, if they are shattered, ending in bitter conflict and total negation and antagonism? Can I produce a global culture and bring them into a unified whole, if I lack the will to correlate them in an interconnected and interrelated web, whose threads are tightly interwoven? What use is there in them if I cannot mould them into an integral order by which I am transformed into a balanced personality, loving and sympathetic?

It seems to me that the value inherent in the unity of human thought, through its various facets and institutions, lies in its power to amalgamate the varieties of viewpoints and establish integrity and harmony within mans personality. It also seems that the deficiency of the oneness of thought is due to mans incapability to reconcile the various aspects and moral significance of cultures, thereby leading to dichotomy, bigotry and fanaticism which, in turn, lead to the destruction of culture and end in a dead-lock of human progress.

The aim we are leading up to may be explicit in the following questions: How can we conceive of the unity of human thought amidst an extensive, turbulent and juxtaposed varieties of cultures? How can we bring about a close relationship and mutual understanding between different orientations and representations of human thought? How is variety included and implied in oneness? How is oneness diffused in diversity? Why are scientific theories formulated by one binding law, and taught in one single method all through the world? Why are they regulated according to one system, whence the ground plan of culture is segmented and fragmented, bearing in its womb dissension and antagonism? How are scientific laws unified through a priori postulates and axioms of the mind, while the dimensions of culture are dispersed by the psyche all through the explanations and interpretations of the different methods applied by the different schools of psychology and philosophy. Is it true that reality is unified by the scientific mind and diversified by mental misrepresentation?

Before giving an answer to these implicit questions we have to fathom the meaning implied in the terms: education, culture and civilization.

In this context, the word education is virtually aligned with the term culture. We may also say that the term culture is essentially differentiated from the term civilization. Thus, if we seek to denote a certain difference between the two terms, we could say: Culture is progress and enhancement on the moral, psychological, intellectual, and, spiritual human levels, while civilization is technological investment on the material plane. For the sake of implicit explanation and right understanding, we may present the following analogy: Pythagoras was an educated man, provided with a cultural background, but, technically speaking, he was not civilized. Although Pythagoras had not traveled by train or flown on an airplane, yet, he was cultured and educated. On the other hand, I cannot maintain myself on the same standard of consciousness attained by Pythagoras, nor claim that I am as cultured as he was, though I am living in the first decade of the twenty-first century, enjoying the findings and inventions of modern technology. Pythagoras might have been more cultured and educated, and I might be more technical and more civilized. But, if culture and civilization are synthesized in harmony or complementarily integrated into one whole, the spiritual progress of Mankind is at hand. In this case, civilization advances and progresses along with the values of culture. For theoretical science is nothing more than wisdom experimented or put into practice. Verily, the over-flooding of the technical products of civilization and its inclination to escape or ignore the supervision or control of culture is a prevailing critical position marking the decline of human culture and education. The dominion of the technical aggressive mind comes in contradiction with common sense, which is a sheer expression of the unity of human cultures and moral systems of education.

Contemplating the past and present states of Mankind, I see how numerous cultures constitute tributaries flowing into the One River of human culture. In fact, nations, ancient and modern, have permanently supplied, and are still supplying, this single human culture with their contributions to the fields of their education. So, various cultures represent one bundle of diverse, variant and multiform flowers and roses whose splendor glitters in the beauty of variety and multiplicity.

Again, we may ask: How can we account for the existence of many cultures and one single thought or ideal?

Studying cultures with an intensified attention, we understand that the human soul, through the varieties of its workings and doings, expresses only one begotten truth proclaimed through diversity. The Archetypal Form that is the lit torch, employs any culture as an instrument for its manifestation. In this way, human history becomes an outer expression of its innate implications and applications. So, every culture re-presents a torch that enlightens the path trodden by its sages, seeking to realize the Archetypal Form or what is termed the Logos. This Logos-Archetypal Form is inherent in the core of the planetary and cosmic existence. Nonetheless, the Logos is the unity underlying the wholeness of Mankind, and the personified representations of the Spirit in history.

When culture comes to its full consummation, thus fulfilling the will of the Logos, reaping its own crop, and attaining the summit of its achievement, its torch-light, by which its illumination has been glowing, is transferred to another culture, so that the Logos-Spirit (or Form) fulfills its cosmic and ultimate teleological end and continues its pilgrimage and itinerary through natural and human history. When the torch-light is imparted or communicated to another nation, e.g., to another culture, the new culture becomes illuminated by what that torch has conveyed in the fields of education, social welfare, scientific progress, philosophical speculation, activation of energy, and intellectual advancement, leading to spiritual awakening and full emancipation from the bondage of human egotism. So, cultures are luminous lamps that enlighten the gradual and ascending process of evolution of human thought in stages, through which the Logos develops into a full and universal expression, a thing showing the interconnection and interaction of particular minds.

Cosmic Truth has appointed to each culture its share in the lot of human affairs. This Cosmic Truth is carried out by each tributary to be poured into the River of Mankind, whose course transmits the heritage of human history as a whole. This Cosmic Truth ought to regain its place in the Ocean of Divinity and wholeness. But, unfortunately, we are opposed by shocking obstacles, which block off the transmission of the lighted torch of culture. This blockage hinders the performance of the duty allotted to each culture. So, the plan designed for the unity of human thought lacks behind. This obstacle remains confined within the bounds of the nation that insists on keeping its culture within the bulwarks of its collective ego, refusing to transfer it to other nations. This means that the egotistic nation attempts at restricting the torch-light, ignoring its responsibility or its global role destined to it as its lot.

Behaving in such a manner, the egotistic nation delays the progress of humanity towards a higher plane of consciousness. It is no exaggeration to announce that the most horrible sin committed by a community, or individual, entrusted with the torch-light, lies in its or his attempt to deprive others of their birthright to enjoy the brightness of the torch. That nation overlooks its privilege through its superiority, which is a complex in itself, and fears that the extension of culture, represented in the transfer of the torch, is a matter that violates its stability and lofty pride, undervalues its importance as a factor of progress and deprives it of its ingenuity. This attempt determines the annihilation of culture and marks the enigmatic fall of man. So, culture fades away, degenerates and declines, or stands out as an obstacle blocking the ascending process of evolution. Accordingly, the egotistic nation does not conform its ultimate ends to Supreme Reality or Cosmic Consciousness. In this case, barbarism prevails, humanity suffers from the imbalance that disturbs the peaceful domain of cultural, intellectual and spiritual planes.

Let us question ourselves: How can we conceive of the cultured individual and the cultured nation?

A nation that lifts up its own torch of culture, and lights it with the fuel of human Unity, without subjecting it to its egotistic impetuousness and whimsical inclinations is a highly cultivated nation; a nation that forms a tributary providing the stream of human culture with its purified waters is a highly cultured nation; a nation that conceives of the role endowed to it in the realm of the Logos is a cultivated nation; a nation that is a transmitter or conveyer of human righteousness is a cultured nation; a nation that gathers in its own torch the rays of other torches and adds a new brightness is a leading nation; it seeks enlightenment through the channels or tributaries of human culture, and so conveys the heritage of past stages of evolution. Inversely, a nation that obstructs the lighted torch of culture raised up by other nations is one that contributes to darkness and evil. In fact, what is true of a nation, is also true of the individual, only because he derives his education from the sources and traditions of his own culture and drink the water of its fountains.

Again, we ask: How are we to know that what is peculiar to a culture is also peculiar to a global human culture?

In order to answer this question, it is necessary to define real and pseudo-crystallization. We can say that real crystallization is an indication that culture is not transitory, but classical, corresponding to universal wholeness. It develops unceasingly. In the past, it coordinated with universality, and at present, it extends its radius to other cultures. Knowing the secret of mans nature and the Cosmos is the only theme expounded. Whenever we thoroughly examine its implications, we recognize the reality of human dimension.

A universality as such talks to us through the tongues of human aspirations, which are reasoned through by the intellect all over the world. It is an interpretation of mans truth in its entirety. Inversely, pseudo-crystallization is a false phenomenon. Through it, we can see culture deprived of its human essence, which is the pivot around which rotate all philosophies, arts, literary writings, religion and science.

The following contrast is given in order to explain the difference between the two kinds of crystallization: The poet, the writer, the philosopher or the sage, who expresses himself in terms of everyones feelings and considers the principal categories handled by human reason, is a person capable of introducing the wholeness of thought and life. Read by many other persons elsewhere, he is as relative to them as to his own people. Although he probed a human problem in the historical past, yet he acknowledged a universal attitude relating to mans Essence. On the other hand, the egotistic individual, expressing instinctive and impulsive desires, inhibitions and ambiguous motives, counting on the sectioned, conflicting compartments of the ego, is one who undergoes transitoriness, and declines wholeness. An individual as such, cannot be a tributary sustaining the river of human thought and intellect. Accordingly, we say: Crystallization is false when it is confined within the particular and national dungeon of the ego; it is real when it surpasses the bounds of the ego. So, the universal thinker is the sage who talks through the tongues of men and feels through their hearts in all times and places. Inversely, the transitory writer is a man who expresses an ephemeral emotion.

Universality is noted to be perpendicular, not horizontal. It is perpendicular insofar as man is the center of his own thinking, and his subtle and ultimate ideal is the aim to be achieved. But, although externalizing itself horizontally, yet it only touches the periphery of human reality. It never penetrates into the interior. So, we know that historical movements and expansions, which extended to distant foreign countries, regressed to their previous position because they had disregarded their perpendicular dimension. The perpendicular distinctive aspect of culture is known for its slow externalization, crossing the artificial borders, and overcoming man-made barriers and impediments. In this way, philosophies spread throughout the world, ideas were diffused in all directions, and universality prevailed. In fact, those philosophies do not count on expansion through wars, nor need victories. Occupation, violence and oppression had never been the appropriate means. A pseudo-horizontal culture, being the product of conflict and conquest, regresses to its starting point.

Transmission of culture is a glorious event that takes place when human beings are involved in the ideal of their lives. So, culture in its real aspect, is diffused through its horizontal and perpendicular extensions, penetrating the realm of human thought, just as the fragrance of the rose is diffused, and light dispersed into its bright colors. So, when Intellect is deeply rooted in human truth, it is diffused horizontally within the domain of culture, for the Logos or Universal Spirit, that is permanently working on the terrestrial plane, is incorporated in order to embrace all planetary and universal actions.

In this connection, we can figure out oneness of thought and a variety of cultures as a circle from which emanate, and to which fall back, numerous rays. Those rays symbolize the different aspects of human thought, which are oriented to the One single Center where they converge into one unique Reality. As those rays represent various systems of education, they are focused back into the center from which they have been emitted. This is due to the fact that all that goes forth from a source or center, going out to the periphery, exteriorized as it is, to react with the world of forms, the phenomenal world of manifestation, goes back to its source, the Noumenon. So, if Life is one in its Essence, and if wisdom and virtue are all-embracing and all-pervading, and if cognition is omnipresent, then it spreads into multiple rays in order to converge back into unity within the sphere of the sole Eternal Truth.

Varieties of cultures and oneness of human thought bear likeness to light dispersed into the colors of the rainbow. So, the rainbow is the spectrum of light dispersed into varieties. If we are able to inverse the direction of the seven colors through the prism by which light had been dispersed, we will be certain that they will gather again together in unity. They regain their inseparable, colorless Oneness.

We can state that each culture represents a focus from which emanate its composite facets, to be oriented to the circle, which is the meeting place. So, each culture represents a ray or color starting out from its source, and is united with other radiations coming forth from other sources, in one single manifestation of thought.

Finally, varieties of cultures and oneness of thought are likened to the evaporation of the waters of the One Ocean, their formation into clouds and rain. Rain, gathering in reservoirs underground, is channeled into rivers, small and large, having names, volumes and banks. Those rivers and streams will lose their names, volumes and forms as soon as they flow back into the Sea. From the Sea, they came and to the sea they would return: One Ocean and many rivers.

Again, we ask ourselves: How do the rays of culture integrate in one single Unity? How are they analogous to the combination of the colors within the sole eternal, ineffable Light?

Contemplating the phenomenal world, we are confronted with two facts: First, external duality constitutes the factual aspect of existence on the terrestrial plane. The internal unity of this duality forms the tow poles of material existence. So, the dualism that we perceive is involuted in one single Truth. Darkness and light, man and woman, spirit and matter, subject and object, good and evil, etc., are mere external, non-conflicting, dualities. Thus, we can say: darkness does not exist in light; matter does not exist in spirit; ignorance does not exist in knowledge; object does not exist in subject; evil does not exist in good; ignorance does not exist in knowledge. They only exist potentially. Verily, the deciphering of this duality is implied in cosmic omnipresence, referring to a fact that our terrestrial plane consists of tow opposing reconciled poles constituting our internal essential Oneness. Unless this is so, existence is never realized on our plane.

The second fact upon which our quest is based indicates to plurality or external, phenomenal, varieties, and internal, noumenal, unity. The former is explicit exteriorization, the later is implicit interiorization. Meditating on the phenomenal world, we encounter plurality clothed in its manifold garments. But, directing our attention to the internal world, we behold, through insight, integrity and oneness. In the inner world, the modifications of our thoughts and sensations are unified, forming one synthesized world where harmony prevails.

The voice that reaches our ears, the form or object seen by our eyes, and the things we touch or taste, are transformed into ideas, feelings and conceptions. So, the outer world, plural and diverse, becomes an image inside us. In this way, it is unified within our inner Self. Plurality re-gains its essential Unity.

The previous statement could be explained by means of the symbols to which we are initiated. The myth of primordial cosmogony has drawn our attention to the legend of the Tower of Babelwhich is Bab El. Another myth informs us of another archetypical legend, namely the dance of Shiva. Probing the significance implied in the origins of these two symbolic legends, we get the following result: Multiplicity in oneness, unity through diversity; the many in the One, the One through the many. The symbolism of the Tower of Babel does not bear any significance to a dispersion or bewilderment, as it is shown by certain trends that acknowledge dichotomy and fragmentation. The tower represents unity that holds together the different forms. So, in the heart of every variety lies unity. The Tower of Babel represents unity diversified, or diversity reintegrated into one systemic whole. What we see in the Tower of Babel could also be seen in the dance of Shiva: The One Being dancing. Through this dance, various manifestations of the Universe emanate. They rotate with him in a dynamic, non-mechanical, motion and change. They dance in the arena of Unity. They play with him the cosmic Play of interior Unity: The All in All.

The significance implied in the fore-mentioned example indicates:

First, our existence on the planet-earth is appropriated with its external diversity and Oneness of Essence.

Second, cultures, as well, and all sorts of education, are noted for external diversity and oneness of thought.

From these two categories, we can deduce the following: Isolated entities do not exist in the world. Dualities and diversities are mere phenomenal manifestations of the All-One. They all move and vibrate within the domain of the One. Cultures and civilizations are aspects of the One single Reality. Multiplicity flourishes through the colors of Unity. Primordial, original, Unity extends to the shoots and branches in order that the forms involuted in the archetypical manifestation come into being. The branches externalize the One Truth, hidden, as a potential, and underlying all objects.

Let us ask: How can we prove the existence of diversity in Oneness and Oneness through diversity? How are we certain of the fact that all cultures, with their different attributes, are expressions of one Humanity? How could various aspects of thought be interpretations of One perennial Wisdom?

1. Common intrinsic sense

Common sense is defined in terms of common or composite mind. It is commonplace reason or collective consciousness, shared by all human beings. In fact, peoples of the world participate in this common sense or resonance of thought; all men and women have feelings; all men and women care about things; all men and women are endowed with imagination; all men and women are provided with emotions and passions; all men and women are able to conceive and perceive; all men and women can remember old happenings; they all have common associated ideas, etc.

This recognition of a common sensecomposite mindshows that human beings, in their different noospheres (the expression is Teilhard de Chardins), contribute and respond to given data. Besides, this actual recognition is identified with various kinds of thinking, as sequence. So, if Reality ascertains the existence of a common denominator among the minds of human beings, then, this very truth proves the existence of various expressions of thought and feeling.

Again we ask: How are we certain of the existence of the unity of thought through common sense or common, composite, mind?

I have previously mentioned that the common mind is well observed in two aspects: 1. a theoretical aspect indicating the general common basis upon which common sense is erected, and 2. a factual aspect referring to the particularity of common sense or mind. No doubt, the individuality of common sense is constituted in accordance with the data peculiar to every culture or society.

Therefore, we ask: Is there a contradiction between the particularity of common sense and its planetary aspect?

The existence of these two kinds of mind is obviously a paradox. Moreover, there exists an integrity or complementarity between them. The apparent contradistinction is due to the conditionings of individual minds. So, if the individual mind in conditioned by its own culture, tied to the fetters of fanaticism, and subjugated to the limitations imposed by individual egotistic minds, then a contradiction, that might be sharp and dangerous, comes up between the common and composite individual minds.

On the contrary, there exists a common basis upon which all minds depend, to be seen in feeling, sensing, imagining, perceiving, etc. So, we can say that the individual mind has a radius of its own, and another radius to be extended to other minds.

The extension of the individual mind, through its aesthetic, intellectual, moral and emotional facets, to the realms of other individual minds, indicates a fact: the congregation of all particular minds within a sphere that might be called common sense or collective awareness. This intellectual manifestation could never be worked out unless the individual mind is emancipated from the chains of its conditionings. On the other hand, it must be in contact with other minds in order to establish its universal foundations. Verily, such an achievement is fulfilled solely through the latent powers, potentials and faculties of Cosmic Consciousness, providing the individual or the group with a potentiality that activates human energy for a better understanding of various modes of intelligence which are all interwoven in one web of dynamic and interacting relations.

2. The unit of measurement and calibration

The thoughtful person considering the mainstream differentiations reinforced among societies, does his best to discover the common basis or background which shows, in its essence, that no real differentiation exists. So a conscious person is aware of the existence of a Supermind that enables him to behold the common unity within which all differentiations take part.

The conscious intellect sets out from a starting point, trying to grasp the underlying truth that draws all minds into its core. So, he begins to study social systems and regulations peculiar to a society. In his persisting search, he gets acquainted with the peculiarities of each society: its laws, its jurisprudence, its customs, its cults, etc. Being through with this study, the intellect concludes that he is not capable of approaching a crucial conclusion in which he detects a unit of measurement or calibration deduced from the search taken. He knows that such an investigation will lead to a confused evaluation or to a juxtaposition of values.

The intellect does not yield easily to the conditionings of his ego, detained within the bounds of the social ego. So, he reconsiders his personal, social, natural and cosmic existence in order to exact a universal law, or a common basis and calibration upon which the unity of human thought is constructed. He is after a unit of measurement and calibration. Contemplation leads him to the fact that a unit of measurement could be maintained through the study of man himself. Man, the measure of all things, is the essential standard for human unity. In this case, the conscious mind tends to study the physiology of the human body in general and the brain in particular.

The unity of measurement, to be applied on all human beings, lies in the wholeness of body and mind. Visualizing this standard, the individual knows that the unit of measurement he is seeking lies deeply in his being. Consequently, he endeavors laboriously to understand that all human establishments, institutions and organizations are mere individual and private attempts aiming at producing a trans-cultural understanding on the human level. He is conscious that the varieties of these modifications do not bear the seeds of contradiction, only because each one of them seeks its own realization within the one network of life. In this contemplative moment, the intellect knows that all things, objects and forms are expressions and representations of one single measurement, which he considers lovingly.

3. The eclectic mind

The particular individual minds, subdued to its egotistic inclinations and conditioned by its enclosed and limited confinements, does not stand for an eclectic mind or a composite mind. On the contrary, the conscious mind and the common sense are eclectic by nature.

The eclectic mind is one that unifies or integrates. It stands for the unity of measurement and trans-valuation. It integrates the different human systems into one synthesis. Insofar as it is not conditioned by its own differentiation, it can overlook the one beauty diffused in its diversities, behold the One Truth widely spread in multiplicity, proclaim the One Reality embodied in man and declare or ascertain the existence of one Humanity, as seen in various societies. In fact, the eclectic or composite mind cannot claim salvation or redemption of the world through the data of one culture, one doctrine, one religion or one way of life.

The eclectic mind is likened to a vast garden where various flowers are planted. In this garden, all kinds of flowers find the fertile soil for their appropriate growth. In this garden, which is the regained paradise, an empty space is left in order to add any kind of roses to this variety. This cosmopolitan garden of Eden is likened to a universal law proving that the beauty of diversity is more exquisite that the beauty of so-called uniqueness or exclusiveness. Consequently, we can behold the beauty of diversity in colors and forms with which the garden of our life and thought is fulfilled and glorified.

The eclectic or composite mind assures us that all the trees that bear fruit, known to be principles and cultures, bear also one branch, two or more of the tree of cosmic and human Truth. This intellectual outlook tends to select that branch which corresponds to cosmic and human Truth. Despite the fact that the conscious mind, which is a universal tree, brings within its realm all the cosmic branches selected from other trees, yet it secures for itself, on its own tree, a leading branch intended to stand for both universality and singularity.

The eclectic mind takes into consideration all the principles of the world, with all its intellectual aspects, and selects consciously that principle or doctrine that is in harmony with its own structure of formation, making of what it gathers a beautiful garland of various ideas. Although the eclectic mind overlooks all the various compartments of human thought, bringing them together into one synthetic whole, yet it remains faithful and loyal to its own culture. In this realm, the world is conjoined to itself. The intellect loves the world, brings it to higher levels of development. He does not come in contradiction with all that is universal, global and cosmic in other manifestations of the Divine.

4. The open-minded person

The open-minded person, endowed with eclecticism, is tolerant. By tolerance, I mean the conscious, rational and loving attitude towards other cultures. So, the tolerant mind is one that seeks reality and truth in every system of thought. Verily, this search for Truth, hidden in the structure of different realities, endows us with eclecticism, which provides us with a clairvoyant outlook, and helps us visualize our own truth in other expressions of Truth. In fact, it is an unconditioned mind, freed from its egotistic individuality, which detains it within the shell of fanaticism. It is a universal, loving mind.

As previously mentioned, the human intellect recognizes the correspondence between what is particular and what is universal. Possessing an individual mind means the preservation of our individual being. And if the world testifies to the existence of a universal mind, it is because we have to bring both minds into harmony. In this regard, mutual relationship holds our private concepts and cosmic wholeness together. The best example referred to is the human body. The human body stands for one single organism where the organs react and interact. Every organ forms a special focus working for itself and for other organs, and, consequently, for the whole body. Inasmuch as each organ functions for itself, it functions also for the whole of the physical body. We know that the harmony produced by the reaction and interaction of the organs is due to a unity or wholeness that vivifies them and activates their inherent potentialities.

The open-minded person lives peacefully with other particular minds. It constructs bridges with other conscious minds, which are torch-lights illuminating the path trodden by human beings. When the open-minded person grasps the elements of beauty inherent in other principles and expressions, he discovers that they are indicators to Truth. They are radiations, or channels, which lead to the universal sphere of Life.

5. Common origins

a. Common mythological origins

Investigating the pre-philosophical historical period, we can observe that human thought had to express itself in wisdom formulated mythologically and unsystematically. In this respect, it is important to note that as far as we can go deeper into human thought, previous to the affiliation of philosophy and philosophical systems we are adopting today, it is necessary to get aquatinted with the unified or integrated origins of human thought. Thus, we are compelled to discuss symbolism as formulated or expressed by the wisdom inherent in mythology, and say: The symbol is a figurative representation of mystery; and, hence, mythologies represent the religious cults and rites of the ancients.

Seeking simplicity and clearness, we have to explain the implications of symbol, mystery and mythology. Knowing that the symbol is the key to initiation into the temple of Mysteries, we may say that the wisdom of the ancients consisted in mysteries, which expressed the primordial or primordial gnosis of Humanity. And insofar as that mystery is oriented to fathoming the interior, the symbol represents the wisdom existing in mythological formulations. In this respect, we can say that during that magnificent period, the human mind had not been subjected to any kind of dualism or plurality. So, it is up to us to declare that the tower of Babel had been the symbol of mystical Unity, and that the dance of Shiva had been, and still is, Unity underlying diversity. Thus, mythology is the wisdom implicated and explicated in the form of symbols.

This last statement is a testimony to the fact that the origins of human beliefs and doctrines expressed in symbols were supposed to be the roots and trunk of the tree of human thought. For this reason, there is only one source, or analogous related sources, from which doctrinal, dogmatic and philosophical systems sprang. Accordingly, there had never been, during the pre-philosophical era, but one single myth or legend expressed in terms of symbology. There existed one Cosmic Myth, one universal legend, formulated in various non-contradictory symbols.

Probing more carefully the field of our study, we may say that comprehending mythology in its pluralistic forms, leads to knowing the origin of mysticism existing in mythological symbolism. So, understanding the writings and inscriptions of the Incas, Aztecs, and the legends of the Nordic, Greek, African, Asian, Australian and Middle-Eastern peoples, we conceive of a fact that they all participated in One system, expressed in various symbols. So far that mysticism means depth, this depth is deciphered by hermeneutical exegesis and alludes to the resemblance of the stories, events, discourses, systems and backgrounds. In this perspective, we know that the Tower of Babel and the Dance of Shiva have never been intended for dispersion, but for the unity of Wisdom.

Emphasizing the likeness existing in the domain of mythology, and ascertaining the binding unity of expressive symbols, we are content to present two examples with an allusion to a third.

The first example points to the parallelism existing between the Egyptian and Tibetan Books of the Dead. The second example refers to the wisdom implied in the symbolism of the Deluge, or Flood, which we come across in all ancient traditions and myths, religious or secular. Almost every mythology informs us of a deluge. So, we are taught that our planet goes through cycles. Each cycle treads its own way and crosses the threshold over to a new regeneration, i.e., an accomplishment of the cycle and the rise or bringing forth of a new one. Thus, we know that the doctrine of resurrection and the theory of creation, or, let us say, cosmogony, inherent in almost every mythology, pertains to a universal and mystical interpretation of existence on the terrestrial plane. So, we acknowledge the existence of one Cosmic or planetary Wisdom, one single myth expressed in different styles and forms.

b. Related linguistic origins

Linguistic origins are closely related and relevant to the essential oneness of symbols. As myths are branches and shoots of the Tree of Archetypal Wisdom, so languages form one single tree. Despite their differential divergences, they are intimately related in a way or another. Although it is difficult, and even impossible, to reverse to the unfathomed past and trace the landmarks of a sole origin, yet we may detect this common origin on two levels:

The level of kin languages within a certain geographical area, such as the Hieroglyphic, ancient Coptic and ancient Greek languages, on one side, and the old Syriac, old Arabic, and old Hebrew, on the other side. Within the boundaries of that geographical area, the mother language was differentiated into various dialects.

The level of distant languages. Verily, it is hardly possible to denote their relationship except through the marvelous initiation into Mysteries. So, myths are our guide to reveal the existence of a primordial language or a primary intellectual concept, diversified in accordance with the elements that the nature and features of every geographical district or region provide.

In this preliminary outlook, we may sense the relationship between myth and language, and the unity of wisdom or mysticism expressed in symbols. Nowadays, some philologists all over the world are working hard to uncover the origins of language. So, philologists came to conclude two facts: 1. the common origin or origins of a language, and 2. the words quoted from other languages and introduced into a certain language: for example, English, French, Spanish, Italian, Latin and German.

The relationship between various distant languages is more acknowledged in the realm of philology than in the realm of etymology. In this realm, philology uncovers the unknown facts by studying the roots referring to the intellectual relationship. So, the common origins denote relatively the concepts held since the beginnings of each cycle. For example, the ancient Sanskrit root kristna, the ancient Hieroglyphic root kre, and the ancient Greek root chrest. The parentage of these roots shows that the words Christos, Kretos and Krishna denote the divine being who has brought his perfection into full realization.

6. The world, as one texture, whose threads are interwoven

There exists a similitude between man and the planet-earth. Just as man has a body whose organs are gathered and interrelated within unity, so the earth has a body that consists of nations and peoples within the sphere of unity. And, just as each organ of the human body is endowed with a certain gift or function, so every organ-nation or district of the body-earth is endowed with a certain richness and wealth. For this reason, nations of the world community, in their totality and various regions, are differentiated by the natural constituents of life considered to be the means of communication and mutual relations with other nations. Thus, natural resources gifted to a country are available on the economic, cultural, intellectual, artistic, scientific and philosophical planes. Those resources, as gifts of nature, are diverse. This diversity is beneficial for a mutual, just and fair exchange among nations of the world. In this way, every nation provides other nations with its own gifts, and so gets in contact, through this natural extension, alongside with other dimensions such as trade. So, the established relations are due to all that is propounded by a nation to vivify and activate human energies and potentialities.

On the other hand, we are witnessing an increasing urge and demand for an improved and progressive communication, convergence and mutual understanding. Although separatist movements are trying to detain the growing willingness on behalf of ameliorating human conditions and alleviating human sufferings and the betterment of human relations, yet peoples of the world are advancing due to an inherent appeal for love and welfare. Presently, great sages and eminent scientists living in the dawn of the twenty-first century are working laboriously to form a nucleus of effective mutation, and put into practice this urgent demand in the fields of psychology, economics, art, politics and science. They are preaching the world how to achieve unity, how to proclaim the celestial kingdom of love and how to overcome egotistic desires and drives and whimsical intoxicating megalomania, and do away with exploitation. They are opposing evil inclinations and destructive plans that demolish the grandiose monument of Unity. They believe that a new era is at hand. An era that will witness the advent and emergence of a regenerated Cosmic Consciousness.

Are we not beholding the dawn of a new sunrise, namely the third Millennium?

*** *** ***

 

 

Front Page

 

Editorial

Spiritual Traditions

 

Mythology

 

Perennial Ethics

 

Spotlights

 

Epistemology

 

Alternative Medicine

 

Deep Ecology

Depth Psychology

Nonviolence & Resistance

 

Literature

 

Books & Readings

 

Art

 

On the Lookout

The Sycamore Center

 

: 3312257 - 11 - 963

: . .: 5866 - /

maaber@scs-net.org  :

  :        ӡ ߡ ɡ