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#59393 - 09/22/11 07:57 PM Arthur Schopenhauer
Lamar Offline
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Registered: 02/03/10
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Loc: Alabama
Most of my outlook was formulized through my music, being a reflection of what I felt. I came to the realization that negativity is the dominant and motivating force in the world and I chose to capitalize upon it in my compositions, a sort of pessimism. The people inhabiting the environment in which I live have constructed a sort of fake reality in which consumerism, egalitarianism, trivial pursuits, and artificial happiness are a sort of utopia. My views are adversarial to this delusion and stagnation. As I have said in some other thread, I think that negativity is a motivator and is second only to fear and self-preservation.

This outlook in retrospect has been with me since I was a child. I had not heard of a philosophy that took this stance and so I researched this type of pessimism as a philosophy and Arthur Schopenhauer popped up. I was lead to his book The World and Will as Representation. I just ordered it today and so have not read it.

In a nutshell, if I understand correctly, his pessimism holds that the world can be likened to a duality: the will and representation. He tried to escape what he called the "impersonal will" through asceticism.

I would just like other's imput on the subject and your opinion of the man. I thought it was an interesting subject. Included is a site that I found that gives insight into the book aforementioned.

http://www.modern-thinker.co.uk/4%20-%20will%20and%20representation.htm

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#63536 - 01/10/12 01:40 PM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Lamar]
Merkwürdigliebe5 Offline
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Registered: 01/05/12
Posts: 60
Schopenhauer was a kind of de facto Buddhist in that he felt the world was an inherently bad place and that the only means of escaping the horrors of this world was through a conscious act of willful negation of desire.

Nietzsche was originally drawn to Schopenhauer, see his work Schopenhauer As Educator, but, like Jung did with Freud, he eventually broke with him and in the process gave birth to a new line of philosophical inquiry.

While I greatly admire Schopenhauer's principled stance on animal rights, I do not see the world as an inherently evil or bad place. Instead, I see existence as a sort of proving grounds, wherein we're challenged by the vicissitudes of Life in order that those elect few of us may find cause to evolve into more perfected versions of ourselves.

Still, Schopenhauer was a brilliant thinker and his works should be read thought upon, as the represent one of the high water marks of Occidental thought.
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#63549 - 01/11/12 12:19 PM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Merkwürdigliebe5]
Hegesias Offline
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Registered: 02/16/11
Posts: 725
Asceticism. I would only relate to this insofar as will to power's willed sublimation, as to build a tremendous reservoir to be redirected as the will wills it. I can affirm this as nothing more than self-discipline. What say you?
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#63554 - 01/11/12 03:13 PM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Hegesias]
Merkwürdigliebe5 Offline
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Registered: 01/05/12
Posts: 60
In my opinion, no, self-discipline does not equate to asceticism.

To me self-discipline is simply the application of the golden mean, whereas asceticism is more akin to masochism.

For a LHP practitioner, the world is not something one wants to renounce, but something one wants ever more of.

For the RHP practitioner, the world is something they desperately seek to escape through mortification of desire. To me this seems a recipe for insanity.
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#63600 - 01/12/12 08:18 PM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Merkwürdigliebe5]
The Zebu Offline
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Registered: 08/08/08
Posts: 1640
Loc: Orlando, FL
 Quote:
For the RHP practitioner, the world is something they desperately seek to escape through mortification of desire. To me this seems a recipe for insanity.


You are correct in your observation that the RHP sees the world as an illusion; a prison to be broken out of.

The LHP, by contrast, views life only in terms of power and pleasure. Sinister initiation, therefore, is a means to achieve these ends, and is undertaken according to the particular state of the individual, rather than some codified "religion" to be followed uniformly. In essence, the key to LHP practice can be described as "alchemical vitriol", meaning transgressive practices that are corrosive to one's own egotistical cancers.

So for most people who live in thrall of monotheistic moralisms, the practice of hedonism and the breaking of taboos would serve to liberate them from their dogmatic chains. Asceticism, however, would be useful to one who has fallen prey to addiction and over-indulgence. This is basically discipline, and gives the individual power over external influences, allowing them to live fully in this life without waiting for the next.
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#63603 - 01/12/12 09:49 PM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: The Zebu]
Merkwürdigliebe5 Offline
pledge


Registered: 01/05/12
Posts: 60
I subscribe to much different definitions.

For me, LHP and RHP are defined not by the stances each school of thought takes on the enjoyment of or abstention from earthly pleasures, but by what each school views as the preferable post physical death condition for the surviving consciousnesses.

For the RHP practitioner, their summum bonum would be to have their consciousnesses subsumed back into the godhead. This of course would result in the annihilation of their "egos."

For the LHP practitioner, the one who goes against the grain, who exits contra naturum, nothing could be more abhorrent than to die a "second death." This is why the LHP practitioner trains their consciousnesses, while living, to survive their physical deaths.
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#63640 - 01/13/12 10:55 PM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Merkwürdigliebe5]
The Zebu Offline
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Registered: 08/08/08
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Loc: Orlando, FL
 Quote:
For me, LHP and RHP are defined not by the stances each school of thought takes on the enjoyment of or abstention from earthly pleasures, but by what each school views as the preferable post physical death condition for the surviving consciousnesses.


I heartily disagree. The LHP and the RHP are first and foremost methodologies that lead to the same end- God (or reality, consciousness, nondualism, or whatever way you want to dress it up). This is clearly evident in both doctrines concerning the "Left Path" of eastern Tantra, as well as the "Dry Path" of western Hermeticism.

The distinction arises because the Right-Handed initiate is submissive. He sees the Deity as being an external guide-- a religion-- a set of rules to conform to. He goes through life with his eyes lifted upwards, shutting out his ears, with the words "Have mercy upon me, a miserable sinner" forever upon his lips.

Those of the Left Hand, however, find in themselves the strength to cut their own way far removed from the protective embrace of a god. Instead of bowing before outwards divinity, they positively affirm the divinity inherent in themselves.

 Quote:
For the RHP practitioner, their summum bonum would be to have their consciousnesses subsumed back into the godhead. This of course would result in the annihilation of their "egos."


You are correct in stating this, but the Left-Handed practitioner differs because he realizes that he himself is the Godhead. The end result is the same... henosis-- unity-- identification with the Monad.

The postmortem survival of consciousness is not paramount. It is nothing terribly Sinister to desire the survival of the ego after death-- as even Christians, Jews, and Muslims think that they will retain their thoughts and memories alongside their loved ones in the afterlife. Whatever endures of the Self after death cannot possibly be called consciousness, since our conception of consciousness is an abstract state of being unique to mortal, earthbound humans. What lies beyond death is not known by the living.
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#63644 - 01/14/12 12:29 AM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: The Zebu]
Merkwürdigliebe5 Offline
pledge


Registered: 01/05/12
Posts: 60
If the LHP and the RHP led to the same end then there wouldn't be any need to differentiate between the two terms.

The RHP leads to reabsorption back into the godhead, Nirvana, Pleroma, or whatever you'd like to call it. It is a second death in which the ego, the self, is destroyed.

The purpose of the LHP is to prevent the destruction of the ego and to preserve its integrity once the physical body is no more.
Such is the desire of the black magician/GBM practitioner, to avoid the cosmic recycling bin and to preserve their individuality in defiance of "natural law."

As such, the LHP practitioner does not identify with the godhead, as to do so would mean the death of the practitioner's own ego.
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"To a new world of gods and monsters!"

-Dr. Septimus Pretorius

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#63653 - 01/14/12 02:12 AM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Merkwürdigliebe5]
The Zebu Offline
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Registered: 08/08/08
Posts: 1640
Loc: Orlando, FL
 Quote:
As such, the LHP practitioner does not identify with the godhead, as to do so would mean the death of the practitioner's own ego.


Regarding this, it is true that the RHP (being focused on an external deity superior to the Self) is especially hostile to the ego. The LHP initiate, through identifying himself as the Godhead, sees no use for such dichotomies, and does not seek to obliterate the ego-- it is enough to know that the ego is as integral to divinity as all other aspects of reality. This gives him the ability to freely explore the pleasures of egoistic existence while at the same time not being restricted by them. (This, again, demands discipline. Either asceticism or hedonism can be used by the LHP initiate to break the taboos/addictions that would otherwise cause him to become entrapped in the ego.)

There is a significant difference between the two Tantric paths,
that of the right hand and that of the left hand (which are both
under Shiva's aegis). In the former, the adept always experiences
"someone above him," even at the highest level of realization. In
the latter [the LHP], "he becomes the ultimate Sovereign" (cakravartin = world
ruler) [Compare to the gnostic Kosmokrator, and the alchemical aspiration to become such an architect of the universe] .6 This means that the duality between the integrated person
and the dimension of transcendence, or between the human and
God, has been overcome. All differentiations and subordinate relationships
are rendered obsolete...

-Julius Evola, the Yoga of Power

 Quote:
If the LHP and the RHP led to the same end then there wouldn't be any need to differentiate between the two terms.


Yet remember that both are described as "paths"... not "goals". The way and methods are different, but they both aim for the same destination. Once unity with God has been realized, it no longer matters whether one has achieved this through receptive passivity (RHP) or by active acclamation (LHP).

Both the LHP and RHP are valid (that is, they foster a nondualistic perception of reality) if practiced correctly, yet each have their own pitfalls. The RHP practitioner may end up becoming preoccupied with exoteric dogma and lose sight of the pantheistic unitarianism that form the essence of esoteric mysticism (as most contemporary Christians do by ignoring the asceticism and anti-authoritarianism of Jesus). The LHP practitioner, likewise, is likely to simply swap out one set of egoistic prejudices for another, instead of learning that there is no essential contradiction between the two (as we see with many Satanists who become rabid anti-Christians obsessed with blaspheming their former faith)

With this in mind, the only "sin" is hypocrisy, and the burden brought upon oneself by the inability to consciously reconcile the Self with the Nature surrounding it.


Edited by The Zebu (01/14/12 02:21 AM)
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#63659 - 01/14/12 09:31 AM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: The Zebu]
Merkwürdigliebe5 Offline
pledge


Registered: 01/05/12
Posts: 60
 Quote:
The Right Hand Path and the Left Hand Path

The central question now becomes what is the way in which this consciousness, free soul is going to relate to, or seek to
interact with, the objective universe or the universe as a whole. The right-hand path answers this question simply by saying that the subjective universe must harmonize itself with the laws of the objective universe- be that envisioned as God or
nature. Humanity is to seek knowledge of the law, and then apply itself to submitting to that law in order to gain ultimate
union with the objective universe, with God, or nature. The right-hand path is the path of union with universal reality (God or nature). When this union is completed the individual self will be annihilated, the individual will become one with the divine or natural cosmic order. In this state the ego is destroyed as "heaven" is entered or a nirvanic existence /non-existence is attained. This is clearly the gial of all orthodox Judaic/Christian/Islamic or Buddhists sects.
The left-hand path considers the question of humanity as it is; it takes into account the manifest and deep-seated desire of
each human being to be free, empowered, independent actor within his or her own world. The pleasure and pain possible by
independent existence are seen as something to be embraced and as the most reasonable signs of the highest, most noble
destiny possible for humans to attain- a kind of independent existence on a level usually thought of as divine.
just as most humans go through their natural, everyday lives seeking that which will give them maximal amounts of such
things as knowledge , power, freedom, independence, and distinction within their world, those who walk the left-hand path logically extend this to the non-natural realm. They eschew right-hand path admonitions that such "spiritual behavior" is
"evil" and that they should basically "get with the program" (of God, of Nature, etc.) and become good "company men." The
self awareness of independence is seen by many as the fundamental reality of the human condition- one can accept it and live, or reject it and die. By accepting the internal known reality of human consciousness an eternally dynamic-ever moving, ever changing-existence is embraced; by rejecting it and embracing an external, unknown reality of God/Nature, an eternally static-ever still and permanent-existence is accepted. From a certain enlightened perspective , both paths are perfectly good, it is just a matter of the conscious exercise of the will to follow one of these paths in an aware state without self-delusion.
Essentially, the left-hand path is then the path of non-union with the objective universe. It is the way of isolating
consciousness within the subjective universe and, in a state of self-imposed psychic solitude, refining the soul or psyche to
ever more perfect levels. The objective universe is then made to harmonize itself with the will of the individual psyche
instead of the other way around. Where right-hand path is theocratic (or certainly alleocentric- "other centered"), the left-hand path is psychecentric, or soul/self-dentered. Those within the left-hand path may argue over the nature of this
self/ego/soul, but that the individual is the epicenter of the path itself seems undisputed. An eternal separation of the
individual intelligence from the objective universe is sought in the left-hand path. This amounts to an immortality of the
independent self consciousness moving within the objective universe and interacting with it at will.

Lords of the Left Hand Path by Stephen Flowers


It should be remembered that Evola was not so much concerned with GBM, as he was with reactionary politics.

While I do not dismiss his views out of hand, I also do not think of him as a black magician in the accepted sense of the word. For him, LHP/RHP were merely philosophical abstractions, not an "opus infernal."

As for the paths not leading to goals, well the RHP certainly leads to a very final goal, assuming, of course, you believe in a post physical death survival of individual consciousness.

Given the foregoing definitions that Dr. Flowers gave of the right and left hand paths, it would seem clear that the RHP leads to a second death, whereas the LHP leads to a state of self-imposed psychic isolation that results not in the death of the ego, but its refinement and continued existence.
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-Dr. Septimus Pretorius

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#63660 - 01/14/12 09:56 AM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Merkwürdigliebe5]
Josh-san Offline
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Registered: 01/07/12
Posts: 6
 Originally Posted By: Merkwürdigliebe5
I subscribe to much different definitions.

For me, LHP and RHP are defined not by the stances each school of thought takes on the enjoyment of or abstention from earthly pleasures, but by what each school views as the preferable post physical death condition for the surviving consciousnesses.

For the RHP practitioner, their summum bonum would be to have their consciousnesses subsumed back into the godhead. This of course would result in the annihilation of their "egos."

For the LHP practitioner, the one who goes against the grain, who exits contra naturum, nothing could be more abhorrent than to die a "second death." This is why the LHP practitioner trains their consciousnesses, while living, to survive their physical deaths.



This is by far one of the best posts I've ever seen or found on this forum. Bloody brilliant and I hope you don't mind but I've quoted you elsewhere in another discussion on another forum. I quoted you because I couldn't have described it better myself.
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#63662 - 01/14/12 11:26 AM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Josh-san]
Merkwürdigliebe5 Offline
pledge


Registered: 01/05/12
Posts: 60
Well as I was just paraphrasing Dr. Flowers, perhaps it would be better to just quote him instead.
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"To a new world of gods and monsters!"

-Dr. Septimus Pretorius

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#63668 - 01/14/12 01:05 PM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Merkwürdigliebe5]
The Zebu Offline
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Registered: 08/08/08
Posts: 1640
Loc: Orlando, FL
 Quote:
For him, LHP/RHP were merely philosophical abstractions, not an "opus infernal."


Evola was certainly not a Satanist by any stretch of the imagination, but the hermetic system that he explored and expounded was certainly in line with the Left Hand Path, something that he himself acknowledged. The RHP and LHP were not necessarily strict opposites, but the latter is an advanced evolution of the former.

I cite Evola because I think him to be the first author to accurately transmit the concept of the LHP in a proper Western context, rather than conflating it with black magic and demonism like Theosophists did. While some schools of thought do indeed insist on the immortality of the individual psyche, others do not. Some agree that the LHP and RHP lead to the same ends, others disagree.

But the common thread that holds them together, however, is the technique of ritual transgression and radical antinomianism. This is why the Left is stressed as a path, a way of life, a practice, or method of doing.

That is, I agree with you on a basic level, but it is my view that it is more useful to describe the LHP in terms of praxis, rather than ideas about life after death. And also that asceticism can be an integral part of both Right and Left ways-- the principle difference being that the Left balances it out with indulgence.
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#63672 - 01/14/12 01:44 PM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Merkwürdigliebe5]
Dan_Dread Offline
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Registered: 10/08/08
Posts: 3810
Loc: Vancouver, Canada
LOL

This is the problem with the LHP/RHP dichotomy..everyone wants to redefine it to suit their own views, in some effort I can only assume to paint themselves in some sinister light. Ive seen people try to use it to differentiate all sorts of things, Atheism/theism..external godhead/internal godhead, even left brain right brain. Really none of that has a thing to do with anything.

All one needs to do is to look at the praxis of those that defined the terms, and what the term(left hand path) actually means in context to see what's up. It really boils down to a pretty simple thing..ones relationship to the nomos. Submission versus transgression
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#63673 - 01/14/12 04:34 PM Re: Arthur Schopenhauer [Re: Dan_Dread]
Josh-san Offline
stranger


Registered: 01/07/12
Posts: 6
 Originally Posted By: Dan_Dread
LOL

This is the problem with the LHP/RHP dichotomy..everyone wants to redefine it to suit their own views


Merkwürdigliebe5's explanation and definition, by way of Dr. Flowers, is satisfactory and provides a means for the LHP and RHP dichotomy to work as a point of reference and a means for understanding and differentiating. The problem isn't that a dichotomy is made or created, the problem can be in finding a satisfactory definition and solution. Apparently, Dr. Flowers provided that in spades.
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