Here's a sneak preview of my next article for newswithviews.com.
What's the Big Idea?
Part I: Dialectical Freedom
By Niki Raapana
October 18, 2007
Ever wonder how American officials can use the word freedom to describe actions that eliminate freedom? Unbeknownst to most Americans, there are two vastly different definitions of what freedom means. In the
Georg W.F. Hegel's distinctive philosophy of history was created to oppose "the rationalist view of history, freedom, individualism, and reason, and the rationalist insistence on man's ability to control his own destiny." (1) To Hegelians, man is not born free at all. Rabid anti-American philosophers say man is born only to become a faceless member of the community. According to Hegel, human freedom can only be achieved when all individuals subject themselves to the totalitarian authority of the state. Therefore, mankind should be tricked, cajoled, pushed and/or forced, if necessary, into meeting his destiny, however reluctant he may be to the Idea. Why? Because God himself is the author.
"God is the author of the Idea; he also supplies the force which moves the Idea in history, and this force is the dialectic." (2)
When Hegel claimed the dialectic as God's special force behind all human progress, he cloaked it under the highest authority known to man. But Hegel wasn't the first philosopher to use the dialectical process (and God) to change people's religious and political beliefs. Creating fake problems and offering fake solutions is a timeless concept. Trick, divide, confuse, and conquer is another well-used, ancient rhetorical formula. It was used by infiltrators and spies assigned to "diplomatic" positions inside enemy courts.
The first stage of a dialectical conflict is when two opposing sides are pitted against each other. The sides can be real or imagined. For every dumb idea there exists an equal (if not dumber) counter-idea. Eventually they're balanced into togetherness. (How they're "balanced" is still cloaked in mystery.) The final solution does not have to follow any familiar mathematical pattern. (1 versus 2 = 12). Each solution in a dialectic may become a new theory in a new conflict. The favored dialectical set-ups continually reinvent themselves into more confusing solutions, theories, and anti-theories, until the "final" theory occurs in a form so perfectly ridiculous it gives rise to no antithesis.(3)
Hegel's version forces people to pick a side from an edited list of options, which will (hopefully) all lead to the same result. With carefully selected choices handed down for generations, the vulgar masses (4) are taught to use the dialectic against each other in everyday life. This sets up future conflicts which can be manipulated and controlled. The tool most often used to rewrite the past, it's usually explained as a new problem-reaction-solution paradigm and/or thesis versus antithesis equals synthesis.
Millions of people worldwide believe that humanity has a collective date with destiny. Christians, Muslims, Jews, and other religions have a specific view of their own role in the final spiritual awakening of Mankind. All ask their devout followers to submit their lives to the will of God. For some religions, total servitude to God's authorities on earth is also mandatory for membership. Many theologians predict there will be huge wars coming at the end of time. The Bible calls it Armageddon. According to Hegel, the wars end when every human on the planet gives up their individual freedom and bends their will to the state. Hegel described a global police state as achieving a "World Spirit."
There are no rules or limitations on how each nation moves the Idea forward. After the
The Americans' logical premise was that all men are born with certain inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The American Declaration of Independence said they "found these truths to be self-evident." Opponents of the
Hegel said history proves that the dialectic is the only way to achieve freedom.
"When men understand that there is an Idea, that the state and its institutions constitute its temporal manifestation, and when they accept and subordinate themselves to the state and its institutions, then they are free. This is Hegel's definition of freedom. It consists, not in freedom from the state, but in understanding and accepting the Idea, which, in practical terms, means subordination to the state. Freedom is not exemption from authority but subjection to it. This is the ultimate realization of freedom. Not all are capable of understanding the paradox, but the progress of history shows that more people are attaining such a capability." (7)
Like Moses and his Ten (613?) Commandments (8), Hegel's grand Idea came from none other than God himself. But, only especially trained/indoctrinated people are capable of consciously helping God to move the Idea forward -- all others will do it without knowing. "All men are instruments, but some are more active and valuable than others." (9)
There is one man alive who best represents the Hegelian paradox. This is Dr. Amitai Etzioni. Etzioni calls his Idea the "Spirit of Community." Etzioni has a very small but effective following in the
A self-professed Fabian raised in a British kibbutz to be a Middle Eastern terrorist and a Soviet soldier, Etzioni went on to study under the famous social commentator, Martin Buber. Buber's ideas catapulted him to the head of the "new" scientific study of human societies in the 1950s. Buber based his "I and thou" theory on Hegel's Idea of Community and Talmudic Law. (11)
The mostly unfamiliar Babylonian Talmud is an ancient oral and written series of debates between Jewish Rabbis. Considered to be the world's oldest legal code in continuous existence, the complex and difficult Talmud is often defined as a dialectic.(12) For over ten centuries, Jewish and Christian scholars have searched for deeper, hidden meanings in the Old Testament and the Torah. Some of the more creative scholars use a technique called exegesis.(13) Exegesis can be used to identify similar phrases in a text and then combine the words together in a new sentence in order to make a new meaning (which partially explains why the Talmud's called a dialectic).
Agent Etzioni combined dialectical idealism, dialectical materialism, dialectical capitalism, and dialectical Zionism into one huge social theory, and in the 1980s he introduced it in upper academia as a "new idea." (14) Now it's the law of the land. Fortunately for collective mankind, Community Police were formed everywhere in the 1990s to enforce the new behavior laws, and wise judges are being trained to see beyond archaic national laws and customs. Many new courts exist around the world ready to bring on the Big Idea.
The 102nd U.S. Congress adopted the Seven Laws of Noah. (15) The Judaic Law Institute was launched in D.C. for teaching Talmudic Law to American judges and lawyers (a move applauded by three U.S. Supreme Court Justices and President Bush). (16) The U.S. Supreme Court began using the Talmud during decisions in 2005. (17) The
The EU's Court of Communitarian Environmental Law is emerging as the model for a global regional justice system.(19) The International Criminal Court is established in
It helps the Idea move forward a lot faster when gullible people dive headfirst into every dialectical conflict that "sounds good." (Pick a side, any side.) There's a modernized activist movement of useful idiots who passionately believe the U.S. Bill of Rights changed from a legally binding contract between free, individual citizens and their government servants into a list of UN-Hegelian Human entitlements. "To the degree that they are instruments of the Idea, they are unwitting instruments." (23)
Etzioni's theory of balancing individual's liberty and rebuilding a global community is so perfect it gives rise to no antithesis. Man will be led into many more violent battles before he can achieve spiritual perfection. War is the ultimate vehicle for progress. We must fight, even for no reason at all. To disagree is to challenge God's infinite wisdom.
1. p. 345, "Political Thought, From Plato to the Present," Section on Hegel pp. 344-361, McGraw Hill Series in Political Science, published 1964
2. p. 346, ibid
3. "What is the Hegelian Dialectic?" at http://nord.twu.net/acl/dialectic.html
4. Norman Cantor, "Inventing the Middle Ages"
5. p. 350 ibid
6. p. 344 ibid
7. p. 350 ibid
9. p. 350 ibid
23. p. 350 ibid
24. p. 346 ibid