The title of this thread is very broad, but generally true. The word "mysticism" within the culture of academia is largely associated with
"gullible", "unsophisticated", "lacking self-awareness", "wishful", "idealistic", and other like terms.
My Own History
I think it's quite normal to take to magic and mysticism when you reach early adulthood. There's a "coolness" about it, and that coolness, in
terms of systems theory, would be called an 'attractor'. This is the place for questions:
Why are Humans attracted to the state of "coolness"? What does coolness represent, or serve, functionally speaking?
In terms of the science of coordinative dynamics (based in the philosophy of "complementary pairs") the interest - or my own interest - in Kabbalah,
Qabalah, Hermeticism, Gnosticism, Free-Masonry, Theosophy, Thelema, and the like, was a function of my desire for
a) strength and b)
Nothing my brain-mind did could be abstracted from my social-context, which was always there serving its role as ontological-referent for my
brain-minds particular wiring. Like other brain-minds (most, if not all) I entered a world full of traumatizing narcissists who traumatize others in
order to regulate their affective-state: sort of like a ritual (we, just like all animals, are ritualistic creatures - consider your thinking,
feeling, and obsessions in light of the rhythmic dancing of many animal species: the mind "buzzes" just like the bees) the other triggers an affect,
or feeling state. This part of the process tends to be instantaneous - but if the nature of the trigger is negative, the first part might be
phenomenologically occluded by the adaptive response.
The above chart shows how complementary logic works.
If you live in a society which valorizes competition (i.e. the whole world), then translated into organismic functioning (how your brain-mind works),
success against others, or succeeding against others, would yield a state of pride. Pride would thus be the 'attractor', but it would be wrong to
think that this pride state is pure.
Pride is the natural attractor for every Human beings brain-mind, and so there is nothing more venomous within Human-Human interaction than an
interaction which deprives another person of a feeling of pride (this is basically systemically structured into Human phenomenology today - mostly
overlooked because people 'move' and 'think' so fast i.e. attracted by 'carrots' and pressured by sticks). But pride - itself as a state -
depends upon correlation, sychrony, or at a psycho-social level of articulation, having the experience of "being recognized as a Self". When people
talk to one another, this is NOT A NEUTRAL situation, but an energy-shaping dynamic with the power to increase or decrease the amount of energy the
parties feel. Working together - being friendly - we maximize vitality, energy, and thus, an experience of pride ("I can do"), which comes with
states like happiness, joy, etc. Everything is functionally more complex when people are good to one another - more flexible, more adaptive, more
But this is most certainly not the world we inhabit. The world we inhabit is rigidly structured by fear dynamics - primarily a fear of shame (so
interesting that genesis 2 finishes off with "there was no shame" -- as if this were the critical control parameter.)
As the chart above shows, in any competitive situation, shame is lurking as an unconscious referent within the brain-mind as the repulsing
dynamic which helps generate the specific form of the pride "attractor". See how repulsion and attraction operate together inside of us to
produce a single state? We are born from a paradox - a circle of opposing relations!
Anatomically, all these areas are linked: the amygdala actually IS singularly focused on detection of threat in ALL organisms. Threat - as well as the
advantage it inclines the organism to seek (the 'instrumental avoidance', in behaviorist lingo) is obviously the first and most important stoppage
in neural processing, and indeed, activity in the amygdala has been shown to regulate response times
, which implies that the amydala regulates
the activity of our 'embodiment' i.e. how we actually feel - initially - is the prerogative of the amygdala. Of course - how we feel correlates with
how fast or slow we respond, and thus, how we experience ourselves in our living.
This speed factor is regulated in turn by the striatum - roughly the area around number 2 in the chart. The amygdala signals to the nuclues accumbens
(ventral striatum) and the caudate-nucleus (dorsal striatum), which in turn regulate how we organize our bodies and the way and manner we organize our
expressions. Reflexivity is generally associated with this brain structure: it allows us to act in fast and coordinated ways.
The middle picture of the tensor diffusion imaging shows how the brain is made up of "threads" of individual fibers which interconnect in various
ways - but clearly, they process different things, which is why they move in different directions.
To return the story and my own early fascination with mysticism and ultimately - power, I was fortunate enough to be disabused of my relationship to
this world by a psychological breakdown that thankfully, left enough of me to put myself back together in a more coherently organized and robust way.
Non-linear thinking is all about thresholds. It doesn't assume simple, reducible explanations for how one things affects another thing - something
Isaac Newtons physics and Rene descartes philosophizing made worse in Human beings.
Everyone has their affect threshold. There is not a single human being alive who is invulnerable to being dysregulated by negative interactions.
Negative interactions are "meaning-vehicles" which activate something within your brains-dynamics
, kick-starting a process you're not
allowed to oppose - only respond to.
In any case, very structure has its weak-spots, and that includes Human beings.
Suffering provides a PERSPECTIVE - an Important one - which reminds you of your intrinsic fragility.
People who scoff or experience annoyance at speech such as the above, cannot seem to imagine themselves abstracted from their present circumstances.
They think who they are at that moment is 'abstract' from their context - as if the context didn't operate to mollify or aggravate feelings - i.e.,
acting as a 'switch'.
I call this "epistemological naivety" - which means, not knowing what there is to be felt or known phenomenologically. Elites - entitled Humans -
have the most immature denial of this reality, believing, first, that they will never encounter different conditions in their living - or, if they do
encounter different conditions, they are "strong enough" to overcome them.
These two conditions pertain to this world and reality, but what of the next one? I, for one, think that complementarity as a principle deals with
life~death, beginning~ending, as well as "first person"~"multi-person", at different levels and ways in the process of living.
How? It's not yet understood, and, in preferring a monistic thoery, I assume some sort of relationship between anti-matter/dark-matter and the
physical world. But in death, you are still in a certain sense "still here".
How did you even become what you were in your living,