Luce wrote:I can come up with many reasons why rape is wrong in this society; what I'm wondering is how rape is wrong if, for the Master, there is truly no difference between one thing and any other.
In my last post in particular, I wasn't talking about Masters. (I wasn't even necessarily talking about Adepts.) My words apply especially to a Man of Earth (and reasonably overlap to an Adept). Thgat's probably the crux of your confusion.
If I were to take on the "no difference" discussion, that would be an entirely different thread and not something I'm eager to get into because I can already anticipate the intellectual hair-splitting and arm-wrestling. But the gist of it for your immediate question is this: A Master need not value one thing over another (in any usual sense) in order to pick a right cause of action. (Masters, in fact, have an annoying habit of picking exactly the right course of action for no particular reason at all. It's by the intellectual wrangling of trying to figure out the right way to value one thing over another that there "cometh hurt.")
Not to be crass or insensitive, but if we were to truly see things without making a difference between one thing and any other, then humanity is one body... What's it called when I impose my will in a certain way on my body, specifically my genitals? From Kether, and maybe all the supernals, wouldn't rape be tantamount to onanism? But surely that's absurd... am I taking the whole "make no difference between two things" too literally?
I think, in general, you are, but perhaps not in this immediate paragraph. I think you are trying to turn it into "lose perception of distinctions." That's ludicrous and cripples your effectiveness (one can't even stand up and walk in that framework). Instead, it must be about the value
placed on distinctions.
"Sexism" can be defined as drawing distinctions based on biological sex. But that's too general. It isn't sexist (for example) for a doctor or nurse to notice that a newborn is a boy or girl and fill in the correct blank on a birth record. It isn't sexism to look at someone's genitals and assess, based on visual data, whether the person is male or female. It becomes sexism in any meaningful way when different values are placed on the child because it is a boy vs. girl.
"What's so bad about hate anyway? From above the abyss, it looks the same as love" (I think that's a fair paraphrase, but I don't have the book in front of me). It really makes me wonder what the whole foundation of this is all about... Love is the law, Love under will. If this love looks no different than hate, the word really seems to lose its meaning. When Good becomes Evil and Evil becomes Good, both lose all meaning, Shiva sees 50% better, and 2=0.
I think you nailed it exactly when you said AC was going after Achad's valuation
. It's a Socratic question.
A good teacher isn't going to tell you the truth about anything (especially because a good spiritual teacher knows the inherent fiction of "truth"). Rather, the teacher will tell you whatever it is
that will make evident the next right choice to make.
Secondly, I'm not so sure that Thelemic ethics are as easy as they initially seem.
In one sense I agree with you. Mostly, though, I think it's all the intellectual wrangling that makes them seem tedious. You can't reduce it to a rule book - that's the most important thing to understand. They don't resemble any external code of rules, morals, etc. They are primarily visualizations
that create a psychic space within which certain conditions of the human state are increasingly self-evident, from which a deeper understanding can arise. Any part of it that is intellectual necessarily fails before it gets to the truth.
"Do what that wilt" sounds to the bourgeoisie as a moral free-for-all.
Yes, and it's quite the opposite. I agree with Crowley that, rather, it is the narrowest path and requires the strictest discipline and acuteness. Its value, though, is as an advertising catch-phrase, and in that regard it works splendidly. (That is, it is a phrase that can grab people at whatever pathetic or splendid level of understanding they have, and have meaning; and that meaning places them in a situation to be exposed to deeper meaning.)
It is, however, simple - elegant - once you understand it. It just takes so much un-learning for most people to understand it. I've written thousands of words on the subject (on top of the tens of thousands AC wrote), and those are only intended to get you to the place where you don't need those words to understand it. They are the road to truth, not truth themselves.
This thread is an example of that -- it has many ethical arguments and explications that are similar in form (if not in substance) to what one might find in a philosophical treatise of the subject.
Yes, disgusting, right? But a philosophy class isn't intended to disclose truth, but to train in a discipline of going down a road that allows you to witness how the intellect behaves. As long as you don't mistake the training device for something real in the world, it's a good academic technique.
Some stuff is right, some stuff is wrong, and there are arguments, at least sometimes, to determine which is which.
In academic philosophy, it isn't true that some stuff is right and some stuff is wrong. It matters whether you followed right procedure. It's a discipline of form, intrinsically devoid of content, which, however, can leave deposits of value behind in its passing.