“We Don’t Know What Jesus Taught!”

“Any record of the teachings of Jesus or the disciples were not kept at that time. All we know is what was written and recorded at least seventy years later”.

Is that a valid argument? of course it is. Jesus himself didn’t seem intent on having scribes follow him around and recording every word, and the disciples didn’t seem to care about laying down specific rules and regulations to pass to fuure generations.
All conclusions about what Jesus or his disciples taught would be based on human reasoning, speculation, and logic.

But if that’s the case, then anybody can derive the truth from reason and logic, and we do not need revelations from special teachers. It should be available, without doubt, to anybody who chooses to look into it.

But it’s not.

Therefore, we enter into a kind of double trap. We have no way of knowing exactly what Jesus or his discples actually taught, and we can’t put the truth together by reason or logic. Te logical result of this dual trap is thousands of different interpreations of what actally was taught.

Does this prove the New Testament is wrong? No, it actually proves the New Testament is correct! We can see this easily established by teachings which are attributed to Jesus, as in Matthew 24, for example. When Jesus’ disciples came and asked “When shall these things be? And what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?”(Matt.24:3)

If you notice, the very things Jesus said would come to pass are exactly the type of things that logically occur if there is no way of determining the true prescriptive content of Jesus’ teaching.

Verse 4: “And Jesus answered and said unto them, ‘Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying I am Christ, and shall deceive many’ “.

If any number of people are looking to true answers to questions, but can’t locate that truth, you will see a confusion of interpretations coming from all directions, seeking as many avenues as possible to determine that truth. Evolution, for example, had many would be discoverers, until Darwin provided what looked like the most obvious answer. The theory of relativity had been proposed by a number of physicists who were very close, until Einstein developed the most plausible.

If we look at it scientifically, therefore, Jesus was merely predicting a process that had to occur if no one really knew the truth of the matter. Based on the importance of the question, competitors would emerge and propose their own theories of what is the actual truth of Jesus and the disciples. If a few of those theories were successful, socially and economically, they would tend to be copied by others who wished to share in that success. In time, christianity would discard theories that had no social or reproductive value, and absorb those ideas which produced social, reproductive, and economic value.

In short, christianity would follow the same processes of evolutionary adaptation as any system, and that process would gradually be accepted as a standard of truth for any proposed christian teacher.

In spite of all that, however, we are plagued with the same issue as the original: we don’t know what Jesus and his dicsiples actually taught, so we assume that his doctrines and ideas had to be at least parallel to those doctrines that have emerged over time.

Christianity, therefore, tends to discard the “content” of its message in favor of the “process”, which is to get as many as possible to believe the “truth”, even if we can’t clearly define what the truth is.

Yet this very process can lead us to deception! Jesus had warned us to “take heed that no man deceive you”!

How do we know that the basic “message’ of christianity, to get people “saved”, is not actually a lie? If we have no standard of truth, we really can’t know for sure, can we?

What IS the truth? If we can’t understand any prescriptive content of what Jesus taught, and if we assume that we must get people “saved” by some process, we are caught in the process of preaching an empty and useless doctrine that has no earthly purpose, except, of course, to make a lot of ministers and TV personalities rich.

it is most interesting that christianity, which remains the enemy of evolution, survives by the very tautology that drives evolution: that which survives, survives. Every species of successful adaptation adopts those processes that ensures survival, and christianiy is no exception. Stripped of evidence, christianity declares ‘faith”. Stripped of all possibility of prescriptive truth, salvation for the sake of salvation becomes the only prescription, with the demand that more and more people support the “work”, financially and prayerfully.

Yet the very things we claim as the foundations of christian doctrine are the very things Jesus told us NOT to do!

While Jesus logically showed the results of confusion, christians embrace that same confusion as the foundation of their truth. While Jesus taught scientifically verifiable reslts, christianity claims anti-scientific ideas as their proof!

Matthew 24:11: “And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.” For the second time Jesus showed the logical result of confusion, and clearly defined it as deception!

While christianity proclaims exactly he opposite of what Jesus taught as truth, every single one of them proclaims they are the fulfillment of Matthew 24:14:

“And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come”.

Which gospel of the kingdom? One true gospel, or many confusing and deceptive gospels? it really doesn’t say, does it? yet we assume that Jesus was referring to one specific, true gospel. yet the scripture leading in to that verse says that many false prophets will arise to deceive many. The scripture after that says there will be an “abomination of desolation ” to occur.

Would there be an “abomination of desolation ” following the recognition of truth, or would it be more likely to occur after a doctrine of confusion and falsehood? I have never heard anyone consider that question. All of them claim to be the gospel of Matthew 24:14, but none have proven that they are a true gospel!

And what is the result if this claim by all these people?
Verse16: “Then let him which be in Judea flee in to the mountain”.
Verse 21: “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world, to this time…”

So if all the major christian religions are preaching truh, and if millions of people are correctly following that truth, why would the result be tribulation and destruction?

That simply makes no sense! What DOES make sense is that a doctrine of confusion and falsehood will lead so many into a tailspin of despair that no one can ever arrive at truth, leading to death and destruction.

Verse 22: “And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved(alive), but for the elect’s sake, those days shall be shortened”.

Elect? Who? How do we know who they are How do we prove this? of all the confusing doctrines of christianity, what is the truth?

I am about to tell you that truth. You will not believe it, but it is the only possible logical truth to believe, precisely consisent with the teachings of Jesus in Matthew 24. I wll tell you now that not one of the 38,000 versions of christianity even remotely teach it!

So what is this remarkable truth that has so eluded the whole world? And how can I hope to prove something that other religions can’t prove?

The answer to that is the most simple logic possible, and because it is so simple, no “true believer’ will ever believe it! Jesus himself plainly gave us that answer, and all I have to do is simply quote his statement, which everybody claims to believe, yet all reject the one statement that would set them free!

If 38,000 versions of christianity all argue over truth, what is this simple truth that Jesus plainly taught?

Matthew 24:23: “Then, if any man shall say unto you, ‘Lo, here is Christ, or there, BELIEVE IT NOT”.

Nothing could be simpler. nothing could be plainer, yet it the one thing Jesus told us that even the most dedicated believer refuses to believe! They won’t believe it because they are convinced it can’t be that simple!

Jesus said you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. You can’t be free if you are enslaved to doctrines of men who proclaim “works” that you must perform for them. You can’t be free if you are enslaved to a perpetual search for a truth that you can never prove, but must accept on faith in the teachings of a man. Yet people would rather enslave themselves to ideas of men, doctrines without proof, rather than simply accept the simple idea that they are free from ALL such doctrines, here and now, if they simply choose to be free! It is the one simle and truthful answer that is counterintuitive to human logic!

So, if there is an “elect” who will not be deceived, how can they NOT be deceived? Matthew 24:25 says they CANNOT be deceived! it is not possible!

Why? The simple logic of Matthew 24:23. One cannot be deceived by any person if one does not follow or believe any person!

The most dedicated and devout of christians will not believe this. They can’t believe it, because they are convinced by their leaders that works MUST be performed, people MUST be saved, christianity MUST grow to reach all the world. Yet Jesus  said that! After this “witness’ is preached, all hell breaks loose!

That is the logical culmination of confusion, not the preaching of truth! The “elect” of which Jesus taught cannot be deceived because they will simply refuse to get involved in the confusion. They will choose the only logical teaching that separates them from the world. They will choose individual freedom, yet the false teachers will proclaim liberty.

2 Peter 2:19: “While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage”!

Any doctrine, of church or state, that preaches “works” without proof, sacrifice without understanding, is a doctrine of enslavement. It will result in an end of destruction that will embrace the whole world. The solution is not to “join in”, but to “come out, and be ye a separate people”, the true art of revolution!

What Is This “Holy Spirit”?

Actually what the Bible says about this “Holy Spirit” is nothing like what the christian churches tell us.
Over 38,000 estimated versions of christianity, and each of them claim to have the “Holy Spirit”. But here’s the problem logically, if the “Holy Spirit” is the spirit of truth: In any set of conjoined propositions, if one proposition is false, the whole set is false.
If we look logically at the more than 38,000 versions of the “true church” and their versions of the “Holy Spirit”, we would logically have to conclude that, as part of the one true church, they would have to be false, since they would contain false propositions.

None of them can be correct, because if you multiply error, you just get more error. In continuation of my last two essays, we can see that the Bible focuses on two “covenants” from God:
1.The promise, made between God and Abraham
2. The law, given at Sinai.

Many have assumed that the creation of the nation of Israel was actually fulfillment of the promise made to Abraham, but in fact, they are not!

The promise made to Abraham, and the law given to Israel, actually represent two separate covenants!

Notice that Jesus brings up this subject with Nicodemus in John 3. In fact, he is speaking of two births. Jesus said, “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the spirit is spirit”(verse 6). Two births, one of flesh, one of spirit.

People assume, quite naturally, that Jesus is referring to all people who are born. After all, we’re all born of “flesh”, right? W e reach that point when we “accept Christ”, and then we may be baptized and “born again”.

That, however, is not what what Jesus meant. As explored earlier, the phrase translated as “born again” is actually “born from above” , from the Greek word “anothen“. In fact, Jesus was saying “unless a man is born from above, he cannot see the kingdom of God”.

That’s what baffled Nicodemus. He was familiar with the terms “born again”, since the Jews had practiced baptism along with circumcision for converts to Judaism. Once circumcised and “purified” in the baptismal waters, the new convert was “born again” as a Jew. Yet here was Jesus telling Nicodemus that he, Nicodemus, would have to be born of “water and the spirit”.(verse 5)

Is such a birth a matter of freewill choice? If so, why didn’t Nicodemus realize it? If it is there for all to choose, why was Nicodemus blind to it? Jesus said to him “Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?”(verse 10).
Here was a man who was a rabbi, a master of Israel, and had no idea what Jesus was talking about.

What exactly did Jesus and his disciples “see” that Nicodemus could not(verse11)?.
The next scripture is most interesting: Verse 13:
“And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the son of man which is in heaven”.

This is in regard to Ephesians 4:9, but it also points back to the Old Testament, Deuteronomy 30:11-12:

“For this commandment, which I command thee this day, it is not hidden from thee, neither is it far off. It is not in heaven, that thou shouldest say, who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it and do it?”

Jesus was referring Nicodemus to that very scripture. The truth was there, written in the commandments, in the law, and no man had to ascend to heaven to get it. It was there for anyone to see, but Nicodemus missed it. If Nicodemus, a master of Israel, missed it, why would we think we have any better understanding than he did?

Paul even refers to this in Romans 10:6-8. “The word is nigh(near) thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart, that is, the word of faith that we preach”.

What “word”? The same one to which Jesus referred in conversation with Nicodemus; the Old testament. It was there for all to discover if they looked. There is a birth of ‘flesh”, and a birth of ‘spirit’, and both are recorded in the Old Testament.

It is very simple: the birth of “flesh” is the birth of the nation Israel at Sinai. Tat is one covenant with God. The birth of the “spirit” is the birth of Isaac, who was born of promise to Abraham.

How do we know this? Paul explains it clearly in Romans 9:7-11:
“Neither because they are the seed of Abraham are they all children, ‘but in Isaac shall thy seed be called’.”

A key verse, right there. Those born as Isaac are born of the promise. Switching to RSV, verse 8, we see:

“This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are reckoned as descendants”.

Notice the implications of that statement. The children of the promise are  both descendants of Abraham  AND the children of God!

So Jesus came as fulfillment of the law, but his baptism represented, not the birth into Israelite law, but the birth of the promise given to Abraham! In fact, the birth of Isaac to Abraham was merely a kind of “down payment’ on the promise, with Jesus being the fulfillment.

What Paul is clearly saying here is that the nation of Israel was never a part of the promise given to Abraham. The creation of Israel at Sinai was for a completely different purpose. They were the birth of “flesh”.

So, if the children of the promise are “reckoned” as children of God, what promise are we talking about?

Next verse: “For this is what the promise said, ‘About this time I will return and Sarah shall have a son’.”

Verse 11 brings it into focus: “Though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad, in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works, but because of his call”.

In Galatians 3:29 we see this: “And if you are Christ’s, then are you Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to the promise“.

If one is baptized, one is ceremonially “born again” into that same promise as Isaac. But here’s the catch: you can’t choose it. It is simply not a part of human decision-making ability. It is not dependent on “works”, but on the guarantee that God made to Abraham.

Notice also, Galatians 4:28: “Now we brethren, as Isaac was, are children of the promise.”

Did this promise have anything to do with what Isaac did? No, because Isaac wasn’t even born when it was made. Isaac was foreknown, predestined to be born, and called by name in advance of his birth! Isaac fulfilled the conditions of Romans 8:29-30!

Does that mean a few go to heaven and the rest go to hell? Of course not. Paul clearly refutes this in Romans 11:32.

Look at Galatians 4:29: “But as at that time he who was born according to the flesh(Ishmael)persecuted him who was born according to the spirit(Isaac) so it is now”.

The birth which Jesus represented was the birth of promise to Abraham, a promise that did not include the covenant with Israel at Sinai. The birth of Isaac is a birth which was forenown and pre-planned, as written in Ephesians 1:4:”Even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world.”

Certain inividuals are chosen to be servant/leaders in a kingdom here on earth. They are foreknown, predestined, and called, as Isaac was. And they are NOT part of the world religious or government systems. When you are baptized, you are born in to the hope of that promise, free of all human authority systems. You have the right to claim that freedom by your faith.

What DID Jesus Teach?

Now there’s a useless question, because in trying to answer it, Christianity has produced over 38,000 versions, at the last estimate I saw. If Jesus emphasized knowledge to the masses, shouldn’t there be something we can grasp to know the truth?

As we have seen from Toffler’s statement in PowerShift, knowledge can be copied and shared infinitely, but it can also be used “for’ and “against” others. Knowledge can be used by one group against another to represent “God”, and it can also be used to kill in the name of God, as we see from history.

The period of history that began with Jesus’ efforts and led to Paul’s expansion of the gospel, was a kin d of interlude in history, a process of re-deployment, determining which strategy would succeed for future relevance. Since “Mother Nature” doesn’t tend to discard strategies, as it turns out, both systems will be used against each other.

While Jesus and Paul were teaching their own particular ideas, both were warning against ‘deception”. If knowledge can be used both “for” and ‘against”, how do we select truth from the avalanche of knowledge? How do we screen out the “noise” resulting from the “supersymbolic” system that has emerged?
The technique, as Jesus pointed out in Matthew 24, followed the strategy of the “superorganism”. War and bloodshed had been the main power from the beginning, as war, from the level of viruses and bacteria, had been the method by which new alliances were formed and new systems of greater complexity had emerged. We have studied to some extent, how war, and technology are related.

But in Jesus’ summation of history, his first warning was not about war, but deception. “Take heed that no man deceive you, for many shall come in my name(Messiah, as many Pharisees did claim such honors at that time)”

Bloom’s “cookie-cutter mold” had evolved to a higher level of integration, and the Pharisees were looking specifically for the kingdom of God on earth, ushered in by “God’s anointed” the promised messiah. Jesus was merely one among many who was represented as that messiah. But the “cookie-cutter mold” was already beginning, as the superorganism began tossing out any different models of the new “etherealization ” of ideas. With increased “deception” would come “wars and rumors of wars”, since warfare had always been the select method for a “shortcut” of evolutionary social development.

The system, in the same fashion as Bloom’s model, would put out competitors for the best idea, then reward those who were most successful in their efforts. This corresponded to the stage of the “Diversity Generators”:

“Each individual represents a hypothesis in the communal mind. You can see this in one of nature’s most superb learning systems, the immune system. The immune system contains between 10 million and 10 billion different antibody types. Each one is a guess, preconfigured to snag the weak points of an enemy. If one antibody isn’t properly shaped to lock onto an invader, another will have to sink its specialized hooks into the raider. It’s vital for defensive flexibility to have numerous fallback antibodies on the scene. So the immune system maintains a seemingly useless types in its population, though it keeps these idlers in a state of deprivation”

These “idlers” as we saw, are called “junk DNA”, and are the remnants, of sorts, of viruses that once tried to use our own bodies for replication. They remain to be used in bits and pieces for manufacture of unencountered “new” DNA that might come along. The “superorganism” would use this same strategy, creating as many different models as necessary, pitting one against another in competition, to see which reaches the necessary level to maintain the organism as a collective entity.

As a consequence of this “interlude”, when Rome was the last of the empires to rule by control of brute force and wealth, a new model would gradually emerge by which wealth would be distributed, according to successful competition among different models. This corresponds to the “inner judges” of Bloom’s model, employed to reward the successful with wealth for greater propagation, and to take away from those who failed, even that which they had at the beginning. Jwesus’ teaching of Matthew 7:13-14 takes on a different significance:

Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate(conformity enforcers), and broad is the way(diversity generators), that leadeth to destruction, and many there be that go in thereat:
“Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” Not “choose” but “find”. The conformity enforcers had sent out their “cookie molds”, and the diversity generators were in the process of “defining the enemy”. That was the stage which Jesus addressed. It would be necessary to “find’ the truth in order to receive the “reward’ of life, but by what standards? That of the superorganism, which simply threw out options in order to test responses, or by that of the individual, capable of choosing and directing his/her own life?

It was the word “standard’ again, forcing us to know and see, as individuals, what was the correct path. Paul and Jesus had both termed these two paths as “flesh” and “spirit”. The “flesh” was the way of the genetic blueprint and negative feedback, leading to the stages of growth described by Bloom, but the spirit was composed of the new developing patterns of symbols, which would have to become the new process by which humans worldwide would have to decide.

How could one escape the “deception” that was emerging, along with the “war and rumors of wars’ that had been the form of technological and social development? How to separate “flesh” from “spirit”?

Just as the organism establish rewards for the successful types that explore new territory, so would the superorganism find ways to reward the successful by the distribution of wealth, as Toffler points out in PowerShift:

“For at least the past three hundred years, the most basic political struggle within the industrialized nations has been over the distribution of wealth. Who gets what?”

What is the model nations have followed in this process? Competition. War and deception, working together as nations form. “For nation shall rise against nation”.(Matthew 24)

This process of growth into greater complexity by war is followed by the “inner judges” who take from those who do not succeed. This, in effect, is the law of entropy, in which greater organization i n one area creates greater chaos in related areas. What was to follow the process of war and competition for the distribution of wealth?

“And there shall be famines and pestilences..in diverse places”.(Matthew 24:7) The greater the success of the “superorganism” by its methods of growth, the greater the destruction or resulting chaos from war, technology, and entropy.

Matthew 24 describes the process by which the superorganism operates. The very process that drives it to greater success will lead to its own destruction, and with it, ourselves. This is entropy at work.

“And many false prophet shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold”.

The word “iniquity” above, comes from the Greek which also means “lawlessness”. This process of lawlessness results when the superorganism elevates pure competition among systems to the highest ideal, as stated by Richard Tawney in The Rise of Capitalism:

“The true cause of industrial warfare is as simple as the true cause of international warfare. It is that if men recognize no law superior to their desires, then they must fight when their desires collide.”

“From whence come wars and fightings among you…(James 4:1)

Laws that served greater collective entities according to collectivist distribution of wealth would create a condition of “lawlessness” and dissaticaction for the majority. Forced to compete and fight as individuals for the morsel left by the superorganism, “the love of many shall wax cold”.

Toffler writes:

“The control of knowledge is the crux of tomorrow’s worldwide struggle for power in every human institution.

Deception” was the key in both Jesus’ and Paul’s teachings. Both warned of deceivers. But how to avoid them? While Jesus warned of the “false prophets’ that would arise with great signs and miracles to deceive many, he also gave us the “key of knowledge” in the verse right above it, Matthew 24:23: “Then if any man says to you, Lo, here is Christ , or there, believe it not“.

In the developing world of the superorganism, “conformity enforcers’ and ” diversity generators” would emerge, and distribute rewards according to those must successful within that system, but the true solution was counterintuitive. Don’t believe any of them.

Knowledge, used by a non-living entity, such as governments, churches, or corporations, is useful in terms of its success pertaining to that institution. It has nothing to offer to individuals, who think, who act, and who can declare “I exist”. Governments, corporations, and churches, have neither body to be kicked nor soul to be damned. Only an individual human being can rise up and declare “I am, I exist”. That is why Jesus said to ignore the deceptions of the “flesh”.

It is the “I” that can step outside and be different, see itself as part of a cosmos, and make decisions for itself.  “I Am”

Intelligence, War, And The Immune System

“High tech neural nets are hordes of individual electronic switchpoints wired in a complex mesh. The network linking the switches together has an unusual property. It can beef up or turn down the number of connections and amount of energy channeled to any switch points i n the grid. An immune system is a team of free agents on a far, far grander scale. It contains between ten million and ten million different antibody types. In addition it possesses a flood of entities known as ‘individual virus specific T cells’…Agents which contribute successfully to the solution of a problem are snowed with resources and influence. But woe to those unable to assist the group….Both T cells and neural network nodes compete for the right to commandeer the resources in which they abide. And both show a seeming ‘willingness’ to live by the rules which dictate self-denial. This combination of competition and selflessness and turns an agglomeration of electronic or biological components into a learning machine with a quandary-solving power vastly beyond that of any individual module it may contain”. (Howard Bloom, The Global Brain)

Bloom goes on to point out that this is the modus operandi built into the biological fabric of most social beings.
For those T cells that are successful, the immune system quickly rewards them, and for those that fail, they are quickly shut down by simply shutting off necessary blood supply.

So, we have a learning machine based on what “works” statistically, composed of modules(T cells) that are “willing” to sacrifice themselves for the good of the cause. This is the “machine-like response” that make war such a rapid feedack mechanism for social organisms. And, you will notice, it is driven by the immune system.

As I pointed out earlier, the “intelligence” of the immune system is enhanced by rewarding those T cells that “win”, and it stores antibodies produced from this technique, making “war” its basis for selection, survival and learning. Dr. Sharon Moalem writes that our bodies are host to ten times as many foreign microbial cells as mammalian cells. We are merely “conduits” of evolutionary change, not “terminals”. We are a biological information system that “steps up” responses in situations in which we and our genes are affected by the environment so the immune system is the model for the neural net that would become the brain.

This leads us back to the idea of “meaning’ as described by the philosopher Antony Flew.

“If you make a claim, it is meaningful only if it excludes certain things….But if contradictory phenomena and associated qualifications keep multiplying, then the claim itself becomes suspect”.

Here we have the link between “meaning” in the philosophical sense, and “meanng” in the sense of the genes and immune system. Both our brains and our immune system can harbor competing and contradictory ideas or microbes, but it can quickly bring the command of the database available in order to make a decision, and that decision will seek the elimination of contradictory “data” that challenges the existence of both the idea and the organism.

If we assume, as Dawkins did, that the “meme” is an extension of ideas competing for survival in our brains, then the brain must act constantly and selectively to eliminating competitive or competitive or conflicting data , just like the immune system. As we saw earlier, the developing infant’s brain is randomly “seeded’ with “jumping genes’ which are nothing more than viruses which have been stored as DNA bits, to make each brain uniquely adaptive in its responses. The neural net of the brain, however, develops “patterns” of response over time between certain synaptic connections, that cause it to function in a way that will shape the processes and patterns of thought for a lifetime.

As Dr Moalem points out in Survival Of The Sickest:

“Even sexual attraction has a connection to disease. Why is the scent of someone you find sexually attractive so alluring? It’s often a sign that you have dissimilar immune systems, which will give your children wider immunity than either of their parents”.

This dissimilarity in immune systems may explain why there is so much “make-up” sex in marriage, or even why women seem most determined to protect themselves from men to whom they actually feel attracted. At the lower levels, the immune system is forcing choice on both, with male proving “value’ to the female. “Battle of the sexes” indeed!

War and sex, in the “learning machine” of the “superorganism” becomes the fastest model of evolution , and technologies become extensions of those various competing models, or as McLuhan has written:

“All wars are fought with the latest technologies…In his Education Automation, R. Buckminster Fuller considers that weaponry has been a source of technological advance for mankind because it requires continually improved performance with ever smaller means…It is this trend toward more and more power with less and less hardware that is characteristic of the electric age of information.”

In a high tech communications technology, war is fought with information and communications, with emphasis on “deception” and manipulation, not unlike the methods used by staph infections that seek to emulate part of the “self” in order to gain a foothold in producing them selves, using our own bodies as the “manufacturer”. In fact, that was the essence of the “Cold War” of the sixties, with emphasis on new ways to use propaganda to influence other governments that “we” are really the “good guys”.

McLuhan points out:

“The ‘hot’ wars of the past used weapons that knocked off the enemy, one by one. Even ideological warfare in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries proceeded by persuading individuals to adopt new points of view, one at a time(as Libertarians claim to do today). Electric persuasion by photo and movie and TV works, instead, by dunking entire populations in new imagery.”

The meaning of a message, wrote Kenneth Boulding, is the change it produces in the image. The image is much easier to change than the internal workings of biological systems, but those same biological systems are already “programmed’ to work collectively, according to the “corporate image”, which brings us again to Hoffer’s statement in The True Believer. Even though the content of movements, cults , and holy causes are different, wrote Hoffer, they all have a uniformity that drives them to seek unity with others. While the content of all holy causes is different, the underlying cause that compel men to die for them, said Hoffer, may be the same thing.

That “same thing” is the collective driving force of the “learning machine” that works to statistically select the most successful processes of survival, and the most successful processes compete among themselves in war to see which one the “learning machine” selects.

This brings us to that interesting and unique focal point in history, when the Jews, scattered around the world in the Diaspora, became the integrative “learning machines” that quickly “cut and pasted’ among various cultures and developed their own symbol system of legislation and commerce that would link nations together economically. If wars accelerated technology and provided evolution with shortcuts, it was the Jews themselves, acting as a kind of “civilizational virus”, that accelerated the process of linking by trade and commerce, along with growing legislation, “code”, that could be gradually reduced to the same standard language.

But if the Jews were becoming the universal system that connected different cultures in economic systems, it was the Pharisees who began to represent themselves as the able representatives of that socioeconomic system.

In fact, at the culmination of the four empires, ending with Rome , the “learning machine” reached a fork in the road. Numerous cultures came together, educated by the various philosophies of different empires. The Jews, scattered around the world, came back to Jerusalem to forge these ideas into a new synthesis, but they had to find a method employing reason and logic that would suit the needs of the emergent concepts of Greek logic, reason, and philosophy. The man to do this was known as rabbi Hillel.

“God” And Nightmares

Our culture seems to be haunted by often recurring dreams in different forms. Frankenstein, the man re-created from spare parts, in a time pre-dating our technology of human spare parts. Invasion of the Body Snatchers, where imagined a group of aliens leaving pods that became identical replicas of our friends and loved ones. Terminator, where we battled the machines that developed their own intelligence.

All of them seem to be variations of our realizations of our own selves, of our own powers, extended technologically into a possibly nightmarish world that we once hoped to be happy and fulfilling.

As Slater writes:

“Every technological advance contains within itself a monster, for each one expresses in one form or another man’s monstrous narcissism as well as the simple desires of which it appears superficially to be an expression”.

McLuhan pointed out(Understanding Media) that “narcissus” comes from the Greek “narcosis”, and is a form of “numbing” as we extend ourselves into our environment. All technological extensions of any body part act as a kind of “local anesthetic” on the part being extended. Our fantasies, therefore, really are part of us, just as the nightmares are also a part of us. For the Terminator, there is the machine that wants to overcome us, and this is a very real part of ourselves, as we are the mechanical extensions of negative feedback processes of the genes, that cartel creating the “purpose machine” that uploaded themselves into our bodies. We are, in fact, a means to an end, and that end is the replication of other genes.

Slater, in agreement with McLuhan writes:

It is with the psychic equivalent of Novacain that we do manage to adapt to change. By numbing ourselves to life, by distancing ourselves from our senses, by losing events in a haze of conceptualizations, we escape the trauma of personal disruption.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers is very real, because we are, after all, controlled by a kind of mechanical “body snatchers” that operate within us, and we are subject to their functions and malfunctions. The genes are “us” but they are not “us”, yet we must have them to survive. We are a colony of genes, and mechanically operated genes at that, with only the goal of replication.

Again, from Slater:

“The attempt to control and master the environment thus automatically pollutes it, for it decreases that aspect of the environment that renews, refreshes, surprises, and delights us….our mastery of the world has proceeded to the point where the parts of ourselves that we have extruded into it keep backing up and flooding the personality with its own rejected components.”

In systems of nature, as Slater points out, living systems must recycle the waste that they produce. What we produce, by our deadening of the senses and the narcissistic control of the environment, is psychic waste. The ever more powerful controls we force on our environment comes back to haunt us, and we fear the effects of our own technological extensions. If the genes operate by adjusting and seeking equilibrium from negative feedback, our conscious minds seek to achieve equilibrium using coping mechanisms of conscious choice to escape the negative feedback of our own technologies.

But more recent discussions suggest something more than just cultural memes”, but also “temes”, technological memes which extend and compete for recognition as further extensions of our lives. There is the feedback from which Terminator comes. “I” seek to be in control of my environment because I know I am not in control of my environment at some unconscious level, so I must find ways to extend and enlarge that control, whether by organizing(which simply brings the same competitive forces into play), or by voting(which merely reduces your “power’ to an average of all who vote), or by seeking a democracy(which is merely reducing all social power to statistically decided decisions of majority rule).

Each strategy above is merely the reduction of your personal power to the control of the superorganism, merely a conscious extension of the cartel of genes that seek to replicate, and your individual power within society is minimized so that you must maintain “equilibrium” in order to successfully “replicate”.

In fact, you have merely taken the “numbing” of your brain by technological extension and used that same extension to create yet another numbing effect of government by statistical extension of “you”, in the hopes that it will generate enough similarity and control of others so that “you” can be recognized. This becomes the near perfect strategy for the replication of genes and memes.

So we feel now that we are the victims of conspiracies to take over our lives, and we have merely contributed to our own conspiracies. As Pogo said “We have met the enemy, and he is us”.

But let us not forget the zombies that have recently taken over our imagination. The “living dead’ who feel no pain, whose only need is to feast on us, and thereby infect us with their “deadness” . These zombies,  the symbolic extensions of our technological selves into an environment from which we wished to escape, only to be cornered from every direction by the living dead.

As DESO author Reed Kinney writes, our society seems to be guided by “pathology and necrophilia, where necrophilia is defined as “the compulsion to dismember life.”

But what of pathology? Slater writes:

…the dearest wish of the thoroughly indoctrinated individualist is that he might pursue a life devoid of negative feedback–that he would be ‘right on’ eternally, never deflected from his rigid and purely self-perpetuating course.
“In brief, the existence of linearity betrays the absence of negative(that is, corrective) feedback, and the inability to receive negative feedback is ultimately calamitous….If the concept of pathology has any utility at all, linearity is pathological.

Remember that the “purpose machine” built by the genes functioned by establishing equilibrium based on negative feedback. If the human body which is a product of the genes finds ways of ignoring negative feedback, the ultimate result is a cancer-like condition, a “balance wheel lost, and the system runs amuk”.

The problem, not yet fully realized, is that the human brain, even with its decision-making abilities, was NOT created to ignore negative feedback, but to respond with behaviors that ensured the genes were secure to function in their own capacity. The fact that human minds began developing symbol systems that involved linearity, shaped by the alphabet, allowed them to extend their cultures by virtue of that symbol system, and begin ignoring feedback. We come full circle to the “Tower of Babel and The Gray Goo” in my essays below.

Slater writes:

“The schizoid defense becomes possible with the emergence of the capacity to generate manipulate, and relate symbols. Once that ability exists it is possible for the organism to withdraw from the complex network of mutual feedback in which it is embedded and respond to its inner circuitry alone. Nature and the body no longer rule the organism”.

The organism begins to respond pathologically to its own inner circuitry, and seek to extend itself into the environment, controlling it, and reducing nature to what is contained within that linear symbol system.

It was Jesus who offered us the counter process to this system:

“Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:
“And yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these”.(Matthew 6:28)

This was not the advocacy of a “do nothing” lifestyle, but the realization that we are embedded in a natural system in which all living things interact and respond according to mutual feedback systems. We are part of all that is. As to those who follow the policies of pathologies and Necrophilia, Jesus responded “Let the dead bury the dead”.