Celebrating Excellence Excellence

the goddess Arete








Celebrating Excellence
Celebrating Excellence
Celebrating Excellence



Author
Replacing Capitalism Perrenialist Seer-Masters Philosophy Overcomes Tyranny
Triumph of Goodness Dianoia and Gnosis Commonwealth Communities


    In an earlier essay, we explored how capitalism has destroyed almost all elements and structures of civilization, but how Goodness has ultimately triumphed, preserving pre-eminent components. In this essay we'll consider how and why we should celebrate 1 the superb, imperishable Forms and fundaments of excellence in human civilization:
  • Art expressions: literature, drama, poetry

  • Political-economic-social elements and structures

  • Outstanding persons

    It is particularly important to celebrate elements and persons of excellence 2 at present because a debilitating pall has been thrown over the entire universe by capitalists and their destructive tactics and policies.


"I see millions of families trying to live on incomes so meager that the pall of family disaster hangs over them day by day. I see one third of a nation ill-housed, ill-clad, ill-nourished."

President Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1937


    From its inception at the beginning of human history, capitalism has continually cast a pall over the entire terrestrial universe. A pall is:
  • A covering that darkens or obscures
  • A depressing or oppressive atmosphere that can produce a sudden numbing dread or the loss of courage
  • A debilitating, degenerating, deteriorating, devolving effect involving the loss of strength or effectiveness


    The pall capitalism has cast over America and the world is composed of chaos, unemployment, poverty, crime, constant war, and anarchy.

    Capitalism is a criminal system in which wealthy persons murder workers without compunction.

    We vanquish the capitalist pall both through not-doing and doing and by overcoming capitalist mind-programming.
  


A billionaire capitalist happened to meet a woman who was secretly a Perennialist sage.

In a condescending voice, the billionaire said: "If you wish, you may ask a favor of me."

The sage replied, evenly: "I cannot seek favors from a slave of my slaves."

"In extreme exasperation, the billionaire yowled, "How is that?"

The sage replied calmly: "I have two slaves who are your masters: Greed and Self-love."



    The capitalist pall will likely persist for some time, but we can vanquish this debilitating atmosphere by using Perennialist combative tactics. Capitalism, as we've seen, has destroyed almost all, but not all elements and structures of human civilization. The Form Goodness has, in this as in earlier historical eras, ultimately triumphed over evil in preserving some of the essential, pre-eminent fundaments and achievements of human excellence.

    The Greek tern we're using in this essay to refer to excellence is Huperoke (ύπεροχη). As we saw in another essay, Arete, (àρετή), another term referring to excellence, in its basic sense, means "excellence in all areas of human life." In Greek, then, we have two different notions of excellence: Huperoke (ύπεροχη) as excellence in a specific area of human life, and Arete, (àρετή), the term bound up with the notion of the complete fulfillment of purpose or function: the act of living up to one's full potential in all areas of one's life.

     In this time of the capitalist plague, we can combat its debilitating pall by focusing our attention on outstanding examples of human escellence. In an earlier dark age--caused by capitalist greed and criminality just as now--an outstanding number of excellent persons appeared on the stage of history and led humankind out of its suicidal plunge into total ignorance and destruction. As this new age, this new birth--renaissance--came into being, the leaders of the Renaissance understood that they had entered something of a "golden age."

    The only time it becomes appropriate for an individual or a culture to celebrate excellence in specific areas of human achievement is if the person or the culture has made a commitment to the realization of human potential in all areas--including the development of a just and egalitarian society. It is fine to commemorate and extol the transcendent quality of Beethoven's music, for example, but only if you are not, at the same time, ignoring the fact that you are living in a culture based on capitalist slavery. It is only legitimate to honour and laud specific types of excellence if you are, at the same time, working toward the full realization of Arete, which includes the realization of a just and egalitarian society.

    We'll use two examples of the supreme attainments of human civilization to explain what is meant by Perennialist "reality realization (give reality to, create; make real or concrete; be fully aware or cognizant of).


The United States Constitution Jane Austen's Novel
Give reality to; create
Created by members of the conspiratorial Constitutional Convention in 1787
Destroy
Destroyed by Capitalist cabal through the Patriot Act and NDAA and by a Fascist Supreme Court
Give reality to; create
Written by Jane Austen and published in 1813
Destroy
Destroyed by false interpretation and by the general illiteracy of the time; lack of appreciation



     All entities--elements, objects, and persons--possessing terrestrial being have diverse levels of reality and realization.
  • Supersensible, spiritual reality: Form

  • Objective, material reality

  • Ideational reality: concept, ideal, model

  • Non-reality: not created, not conceived of,
    not aware of, not appreciated, not understood
     Genuine humans realize--make real entities through their awareness, appreciation, and understanding.

    Sub-humans destroy or debilitate entities through their lack of awareness, appreciation, and understanding.
  • Totally unaware that there is a U.S. Constitution or the novel, Pride and Prejudice
  • Aware of their existence, but totally unaware of their meaning and significance
  • Mindlessly believing capitalist disinformation about the U.S. Constitution (.e.g. that it is not important that this document be enacted or upheld); mindlessly believing scholastic, neo-modernist misinterpretations of Pride and Prejudice


"Appreciation is as definite a contribution to whole creation as any of the other qualities which seem to us the peculiar property of genius. Appreciation too works in the substance of thought, and therefore joins hands as co-worker with the original creative impulse."

Stewart Edward White, The Job of Living


    In this essay we're exploring why and how we should appreciate--celebrate--those priceless artifacts of human civilization that have survived the annihilative capitalist onslaught. Appreciating--celebrating--these pre-eminent achievements of human thought and effort should be a part of our life-process. In such barbaric times as we now live in, it is a genuine triumph to avoid being negatively influenced by rampant ignorance, criminality, and violence.

    One of the many reasons we celebrate excellence is to awaken people to higher ideals and capabilities, because without awareness of superior elements than they are now experiencing in this capitalist nightmare, they will never be able to recognize what capacities they lack or what higher aspects of human life they are missing.

"Goodness is the measure of evil; it is not because of stupidity that we know stupidity but because of intelligence, which makes recognition of this privation possible."

Frithjof Schuon, Logic and Transcendence


    In the section below, selected material is available for celebratory review.

Celebrating Excellence

Plato's Allegory
of the Cave
Shakespeare's
Othello
The Open
Window
A Perfect Day
For Bananafish
Meditation Beethoven's
9th Symphony





Boticelli's painting of Athena overcoming the satyr--civilization triumphant over barbarism
   We take the approach that humans overcome destructive terrestrial forces--such as capitalism--by understanding and realizing the Forms (the essence) of human civilization. In all historic eras, humankind has ordered its life according to specific societal archetypes and essences: patterns of excellence. When these elements become deranged and deadly--as at present--then we can overcome these destructive patterns of behavior only by understanding the true Essence (Forms) of these elements and instituting them in society.

     To do this we must realize a new world by developing a new kind of person--with exceptional capabilities, creating a higher culture for the purpose of long-range development of new ideas, practices, and requisite capabilities.


"Understanding can be acquired only by actual participation in the reality."

Betty and Stewart Edward White, Across the Unknown, 1937






Notes:

1 Celebrate: appreciate, commemorate, honour, observe, toast, praise, commend, glorify, publicize, exalt, laud, extol

2 Excellence (areté): reaching the highest potential; of the highest effectiveness