THE WAY OF EVOLUTION
I have sometimes used the term 'God' in these essays, though more often than not with reference to the Holy Spirit than to either Jesus Christ or the Father.† Nevertheless the use of such a term, when applied to the former, isn't something that I am particularly happy about!† For no matter how convinced one is that the Holy Spirit would be an 'it' rather than a 'He', an association of 'He' with God still clings to the term and prejudices one's thought accordingly.† In other words, the traditional usage of the term 'God' implies anthropomorphic associations which, in relation to the Holy Spirit, can only be irrelevant.† Consequently we needn't be surprised if it has fallen into a certain disrepute with the more advanced minds of the age, who fight shy of anthropomorphic projections.† Even Eastern spiritual adepts are apt to fall into an anthropomorphic trap when they refer to God, according various human attributes to 'Him'.† But the fact of the matter is that the Supreme Being, the Holy Ghost, the Omega Point, or whatever else you choose to call that which will signal the climax of evolution through our transformation into pure spirit, is an absolute, and therefore beyond all anthropomorphism.† The only suitable pronoun for this absolute would be 'it', not 'He'.
††††† Accordingly the word 'God' should generally be avoided in future since, compliments of the tradition, one almost invariably links its usage to 'He'.† Moreover, since the age is becoming ever more scientific, words associated with traditional concepts can only become increasingly suspect and inadequate, no matter how well-intentioned their employment.† Instead of the theologically-oriented term 'God,' which carries more weight with regard to the Creator than ever it does with regard to an Ultimate Creation, the employment of terms like the omega absolute, transcendent spirit, supreme being, ultimate reality, etc., would presuppose a scientific bias commensurate with the age's demand for truth rather than illusion, fact rather than fiction.† There could be no possibility of one's applying a 'he' to any of those!
††††† Like the omega absolute, the alpha absolute is also an 'it', although of a very different order from what presupposes ultimate reality.† The stars, which in their entirety appertain to the diabolic side of the Universe, a side emphasizing contraction and divergence rather than expansion and convergence, correspond to what traditional anthropomorphic theology designates as the Creator, the Father, or, depending on the context, the Devil.† Again, in a post-egocentric age such terms can only become obsolete, since we require a scientifically objective terminology which avoids the anthropomorphic associations accruing to them.† To assert that the alpha absolute is a 'she' would be no more objectively correct than 'he', if used to designate the omega absolute, because we are dealing with the non-human, which must necessarily be an 'it'.† An absolute that is entirely sensuous, like the sun, is no closer to being human than one that, like the omega absolute, would be entirely spiritual.† 'He' and 'she' only apply to human beings, and they do so because human beings aren't absolutes but relativities, combinations of sensuality and spirituality to a greater or lesser degree, depending on one's gender, intelligence, temperament, and physique.† No woman is entirely sensual but, at any rate, traditionally more sensual than spiritual, and therefore 'she'.† Likewise, no man is entirely spiritual but, as a rule, more spiritual than sensual, and therefore 'he'.† These pronouns presuppose a compromise, a dualistic relativity, and they can only remain relevant until such time as this compromise is transcended at the culmination of evolution and man becomes superman, becomes, in effect, ultimate divinity, which is necessarily an 'it'.
††††† A woman cannot, as a rule, become a man, and vice versa.† A woman isn't a man in skirts, as certain shallow thinkers tend to imagine, but a different creature, one in which sensuality has the upper-hand over spirituality, no matter how intelligent or scholarly the individual woman may happen to be.† Appearance over essence is the feminine mean, just as, conversely, essence over appearance is the masculine one.† The mean can be tampered with, but it cannot be denied!† Strictly speaking, there is no such thing as a woman who is more spiritual than sensual.† Such a person wouldn't be a woman at all, but effectively a man.† Of course, a woman can go against her natural grain to some extent, she can even be obliged to go against it and thus 'bovaryize' or subvert herself to a point where she appears masculine.† This situation is fairly widespread in the contemporary industrialized world, which is male-orientated and likely to become ever more so as evolution progresses towards an eventual climax in the omega absolute.† But even the most 'bovaryized' woman will remain fundamentally feminine, with various sensual predilections and needs which somehow have to be met, no matter how fugitively or clandestinely.† She won't be able to entirely overcome her basic femininity, which presupposes a sensual bias.† And if she is pretty, she will be subject to the attentions of men and thus have her basic femininity in appearance thrust back upon her, making her conscious, at such times, of her physical beauty rather than of her spirit.
††††† To a certain extent men enslave women in their sensuality simply by admiring their physical appearances, and so preclude the female from developing her spirit.† Yet this isn't to say that men are entirely responsible for this sorry state-of-affairs.† For the great majority of women are so made that an absorption in appearances is perfectly acceptable to them, though not, I need scarcely add, all of the time.† After all, they are not absolutes but relativities, not 'its' but 'shes', and therefore remain partly spiritual.† In general, however, their leading string is the apparent, and it is on the basis of appearances that, until such time as they cease being physically attractive, they stake their chief pride in life.† With late adulthood, on the other hand, a gradual reversal sets-in, so that, as Carl Jung rightly contended, they become less feminine and correspondingly more masculine, more absorbed in spiritual affairs.† But while they remain youthful and attractive, it is rather unlikely that the spirit will take precedence over the flesh!† Their appearance will generally predominate.
††††† When Shaw asserted that women are sexually positive, or active, and men sexually negative, or passive, he wasn't saying anything particularly foolish.† Although a superficial analysis of their respective roles might lead one to question that assertion and conclude, instead, that because the man makes love to the woman he must be sexually active and she passive, I believe a deeper analysis will confirm one in it.† Yes, men do behave positively during coitus, but that is only in response to the woman's beauty and sexual allurement, not completely independent of it.† A man may superficially take the initiative during the sexual act, but such an initiative pales to insignificance compared with the overall initiative taken by women in terms of appearance and seduction prior to it.† Sex for men is rather the exception to the rule.† For women, however, it is the rule, about which their lives revolve as a matter of life-and-death.† A woman can fail in life through not having succeeded sexually and fulfilled herself both as a lover and, more importantly, as a mother, irrespective of how professionally successful she has been.† Not so a man!† He will be a success in life if his professional work has won him respect inside his profession and admiration outside it, no matter how barren his sexual relations may happen to have been.† A man doesn't come into the world primarily to be a lover and father but a professional success, with sexual relations as a subsidiary concern.† In fact, with the very greatest men, men of genius, history teaches us that their sexual relations were either few-and-far between or virtually non-existent, as in the cases of Michelangelo, Beethoven, Delacroix, Tchaikovsky, Baudelaire, Nietzsche, Schopenhauer, Spengler, and Shaw.† Admittedly, not all great men have been celibate.† But a significant number of the very greatest have, and this fact needn't surprise us.† For when a man is relatively free of female influence, it stands to reason that he will have more incentive to develop his spirit than would otherwise be the case, since not subject to regular sexual temptation at the hands of a wife or mistress.† He will be beyond the reach of that spiritually-restraining influence which a woman who is in any degree physically attractive will inevitably exert, and thus be free to explore deeper into the spiritual, the artificial, the transcendental, as his genius develops.† Now the less of a part physical sex plays in his life the more, by a compensatory token, will spiritual sex enter into it, making of his nocturnal fantasies or pornographic investigations a form of sexual sublimation.
††††† Naturally, there are those who, not being particularly spiritually-advanced themselves, will contend that such sublimated sex is a type of perversion, and therefore hardly something to be countenanced by any right-thinking man.† This is, needless to say, a relative viewpoint, without eternal credibility or justification.† If life were a static affair, in which a given naturalistic mode of sexual behaviour was the only feasible option, then yes, the man disposed to sublimations of one kind or another would be a pervert.† But since life is evolutionary, embracing the gradual expansion of the spiritual over the sensual until such time as the latter effectively ceases to apply, it should be apparent that the man disposed to sublimation is simply on a higher level of sexual evolution than the more naturalistic man - is, in effect, his sexual superior.† For the latter, unbeknown to himself, is simply a victim of what might be called the 'non-evolutionary delusion' and, in his insistence that the former is essentially a pervert, is really advertising his spiritual backwardness and moral simplicity.
††††† That D.H. Lawrence was such a man is (as
we saw earlier) a well-documented fact, since he wrote against 'sex in the
head' as a perversion.† His attitude was
fundamentally that of the man who believes there is a golden mean to correct
living which shouldn't be transgressed in any way if one is to remain healthy
and sane.† It conformed to the
'non-evolutionary delusion' and was to have a temporary influence on Aldous
Huxley, who expressed this philosophy in such books as Point
Counter Point (where it takes the form of Rampionism, or the 'all-round'
life according to Rampion) and Do What You Will (where a number of,
according to Lawrence's criteria, 'great perverts', including Baudelaire and
Pascal, are analysed from the viewpoint of the golden mean and, not altogether
surprisingly, found wanting).† In
reality, however, it is Lawrence and Huxley who are found wanting in
evolutionary perspective; for they show themselves incapable of grasping the
moral significance of the spiritual lopsidedness of the great men under
scrutiny.† When, in Point Counter
Point, Rampion shows Walter Bidlake, the Huxleyian protagonist of the novel,
paintings in which there is an explicit criticism of Shaw and Wells (which
takes the form of a depiction of their heads on a platter), for their
intellectual lopsidedness, we can be under no doubt that bourgeois humanism is
being advocated at the expense of proletarian transcendentalism, and that the
progressive proclivities of Shaw and Wells, the two leading socialist authors in
England of the time, have not been appreciated in their true light.† One suspects that Huxley's readiness to
criticize these authors via Rampion was founded as much on social snobbery as
on the 'all-round' philosophy he partly inherited from
††††† Oddly enough, the idea of the heads of
Shaw and Wells depicted on a platter is curiously prophetic of the development
of post-dualistic society towards a stage when the body will largely be
overcome and men are accordingly elevated to the supernatural status of so many
artificially-supported and/or sustained meditating brains.† No doubt,
††††† There are, of course, women who are able to defend their own interests to a significant extent and continue life in the guise of lovers and mothers, as traditionally.† They are in many respects the strongest and most feminine women, and one can respect them for their resistance to masculine pressures.† There are also, however, women who would seem to have betrayed their sex and 'gone over' to the masculine cause, demanding greater sexual freedoms or professional opportunities, as the case may be.† Beatrice Webb was a prominent example of the latter type of woman, which, in a sense, is rather surprising, since she was highly attractive.† Yet she was also highly intelligent, and it often happens that highly intelligent women are among the first to desert their sex, as it were, and go over to the enemy camp.† Why?† Simply because intelligence cannot be satisfied with sensual gratification alone, but requires intellectual stimulation.
††††† Now although I have a deep respect for people like Beatrice Webb, I cannot reconcile myself to the puritan attitude towards sex which she advocated, largely in consequence, one suspects, of a Victorian legacy.† Sex, Beatrice felt, should be confined to propagation and indulged in only when necessary, not made an isolated pleasure.† Sex as a kind of duty rather than sex-for-sex's sake.† Sex in naturalis.... Not the most enlightened attitude when compared to that advocated by the promiscuous society in which, despite the horrors of sexually-transmitted disease, we apparently continue to live these days, is it?† Yet that was how Beatrice reasoned, and, despite its puritanism, such reasoning isn't entirely devoid of merit.† At least, it is likely to result in a more spiritual life for those who literally adhere to it, provided, however, that they don't have too many children and can refrain from sex for long stretches at a time!† It is a rather Spartan attitude, possible for a minority of higher types, but hardly liable to win favour among the less-intellectualized masses.† Its chief weakness resides in the fact that it leaves the natural intact, maintaining a respect for concrete sex which could only prove incompatible with the overcoming of sex through various forms of sexual sublimation.† For, paradoxically, sex-for-sex's sake does signify a step in the eventual overcoming of sex and hence women, especially when promoted through the use of various types of contraception which, when successful, overcome the natural.
††††† I have, you will recall, touched upon this matter in an earlier essay, so I won't enlarge upon it here.† Suffice it to say that the development of sex-for-sex's sake is an integral part of evolutionary progress away from nature, and must eventually lead to the complete termination of sex.† Even pornography, both photographic and literary, is an aspect of the gradual overcoming of women which should be encouraged by all right-thinking progressive males.† A man reading about sex in a novel or magazine is indulging in a form of sexual sublimation which, temporarily at least, renders actual physical sex irrelevant.† If he prefers reading about sex to actually indulging in it, the chances are that he exists on a more evolved level than the purely or predominantly natural man, who remains a victim of the sensual.† In fact, he would be a more civilized man, since given to the artificial to a greater extent than to the natural.
††††† This is really the essential crux of the matter, where nature and civilization are concerned, and no writer understood the difference between them better than Ortega y Gasset, who emphasized the artificial status of civilization in contrast to the natural world.† He knew that civilization cost a great effort on the part of man, and that it could so easily be undone by reactionary or barbarous elements in society, if not rigorously protected.† There are always those who wish to impede human progress towards the supernatural and drag humanity down closer to the Diabolic, and they aren't invariably uneducated or unintelligent people either, still less women!† But civilization must go ahead, no matter what the Rousseaus, Whitmans, Thoreaus, Lawrences, Hardys, Powyses, or Gides of this world may have to say against it.† For in the development of civilization towards ever more artificial and supernatural standards lies our raison d'Ítre for living, the essential justification for our presence here.† We have made considerable strides in recent centuries, but are still a long way from achieving our heavenly objective in the ultimate spirituality of the transcendental Beyond.
††††† To take but one example and not a particularly superficial one either, we are all-too-frequently nature's victims where cricket matches are concerned.† How many times, in the past, have cricket matches been disrupted by the weather - by bad light or rain!† Players and spectators, commentators and radio listeners or television viewers are all-too-often the victims of nature's inclemencies.† So what is to be done about it?† Clearly, a time must come when cricket is no longer played because too competitive and physically orientated.† That much is obvious.† Such a time, however, is no-less obviously still some way into the future!† But in the meantime, if civilization is to progress, steps should be taken to ensure that cricket, which is an aspect of civilization, ceases to be at the weather's mercy.† Now one of the ways of doing this would be to erect Buckminster-Fuller type Geodesic domes over the cricket pitch in order to preclude interference from rain.† Additionally, electric lighting could be installed at salient points in the dome in order to ensure that bad light won't adversely affect play.† If footballers can play under floodlighting, there should be no reason why cricketers shouldn't manage to play under something similar when the need arises.† That way continuity in the game would be guaranteed and no-one, least of all the players themselves, need ever be inconvenienced by the adverse intrusions of nature.† When the weather is fine, on the other hand, the dome could be collapsed or rolled back, depending on its construction.† There is no need for it to be in permanent use, at least not initially.† For evolution generally proceeds by degrees, rather than in leaps and bounds.† Too complete and sudden an imposition of artificial aid would amount to a revolution in the game which could prove detrimental to both players and spectators alike.† Conversely, a revolution could prove beneficial to the game in the long term, if detrimental in the short.† We haven't yet witnessed the wholesale adoption of artificial equipment, such as aluminium bats and plastic pads, or the introduction of synthetic pitches.† No doubt, the future will render such innovations respectable.† After all, they would signify a greater degree of artificiality and thus reflect a higher stage of evolution.† Civilization cannot afford to remain static.† It requires constant attention, if it isn't to stagnate or regress.
††††† Yet what applies to cricket should also apply to other sports and outdoor contexts in general, which are all-too-frequently disrupted or ruined by bad weather.† One feels that there is a real future for such Geodesic domes as Buckminster-Fuller, one of America's foremost architects, has designed - a future in which civilization gains the mastery over nature and continues to progress in transcendent isolation from it.† Yet nature isn't only external to us but, as I have frequently pointed out, internal as well, which means that the enemy, so to speak, is also to be found within, in our very physical, sensual selves.† The enemy is also the flesh, and until we overcome that, there is not the slightest prospect of us abandoning our humanity for the divine salvation of the transcendental Beyond.
††††† Traditionally, the thought of overcoming the flesh has implied an abstinence from sex coupled to a frugal diet - in short, a kind of Christian asceticism.† That is all very well but, unfortunately, it isn't nearly enough by itself to guarantee salvation.† For salvation requires a much more thorough and complete overcoming of the flesh than that!† It requires we become so biased on the side of the spirit that we have no use for the body.† It requires we develop our technology to an extent whereby such a transformation becomes possible.† It requires the development of a post-dualistic philosophy, a philosophy with no sympathy for any Rampion-like 'all-round' attitude to life, a philosophy which is decidedly Beyond-aspirant rather than man-centred, and which really does spell out the terms by which man ... should be overcome.
††††† Such a philosophy does exist in the contemporary world and will doubtless continue to develop over the coming decades and centuries, as we increasingly embrace post-dualistic criteria.† Already, in medical science, the removal of troublesome parts of the body, such as tonsils and appendix, is indicative of a trend towards the complete overcoming of the flesh, and is but a rung of the evolutionary ladder we must ascend if we are ultimately to attain to transcendent spirit.† In time, more extensive removals of natural organs and insertions of artificial ones will occur, raising us above nature to a degree undreamt of by our dualistic ancestors.† Such cyborg-oriented artificial transplantations will follow the trend of evolution towards the transcendent 'it', or Holy Spirit, which is our ultimate destiny.† But we shall necessarily remain identifiable as 'he' or 'she' for some time to-come, despite our technological and spiritual progress.† In the post-dualistic age, however, 'she' will give way, on superhuman terms, to 'he', and, eventually, 'he' to 'it'.† For that is the way of evolution!