Why did the US begin as a confederation of 13 states?
Before I go onto my central topic - how Switzerland represents some sort of social utopian state - I want to explore numbers, and a possible reason
why they may play a central role in how states are organized.
When the United States was established, there were 13 states who signed on. Why only 13? I emphasize this matter because in Hebrew - a language of
particular importance to many intellectuals of the American revolution (such as Ezra Stiles) - the numerical value of the Hebrew word for One, Echad,
I should mention here that I accept the central premise (though not everything) of the thread
All Roads Lead To Rome
, in that civilization has been under the command of the Roman
empire for some 2500 years, and perhaps this is indicated by the persistence of certain Noble families, some as old as the beginning of the Christian
era, down to our own current era; apparently the oldest - to my knowledge - is the Massimo family of Rome, who claim ancestry to the Maximi family of
ancient Rome, circa 450 BCE. Also interesting - from a metaphysical perspective - is the apparent 'inbreeding' between this family and other major
Noble families of Europe; in line with metaphysical assumptions, the 'male' of the Massimo family marry 'females' of ancillary European noble
families, such as the house of Borbon, Savoy and Saxony. The female is 'subordinate' to the male, in traditional metaphysics, because the concept of
male is aligned with the concept of activity, while the concept of female is aligned with passivity.
With this premise in place, I believe that European history from then till now has been directed by a cabal of 'philosopher kings' who intended to
establish a new world order, based primarily - though only tangentially - upon the ideas outlined in Plato's Republic.
Socrates, it should be mentioned, was no more 'real' a person than Jesus, or Mohammad (neither of which were real). Rather, he was an archetype of
the ideal human being, and as such, Socrates is the archetype of the modern humanist.
The question of course is, what is the relationship between America, the founding fathers, Hebrew, and Rome??
This goes back to the beginnings of western civilization. What is Christianity? This short video succinctly explains what it was about:
Christianity was the invention of the Roman empire. It was a conspiracy. In my opinion, it had two intentions: The first, as the above video
documents, was to establish Christianity as the religion of a large part of the world, and in doing so, unify the world under one government (or
'culture'). But the second reason is a subject of glaring contention amongst many different people: to supplant Judaism. Why did the Romans take the
religion of the Jews - distort it beyond all recognition - allocate 40% of the empires military might to take out the small region of Judea - and then
rename the region "palestina" after the Hebrews biblical nemesis, the Philistines?
This perhaps requires further explanation. What IS the religion of the Jews all about? First, I'm not talking about Talmudic Judaism, which, although
consonant to the 'spirit' of the Hebrew religion, has added a lot of accoutrements which many consider completely unnecessary. In any case, the
religion of the Hebrews is FAR from what Christianity made of it - that is for certain. So what was it? The Hebrews, first of all, did not subscribe
to the Augustinian dichotomy of reason verse revelation, which itself implies some sort of opposition between revelation (Gods communication to man)
and reason. Not at all. The religion of the Jews emphasized a unified world - and so it's God, as Jews today repeat in the Shema, "Is Echad" - is
Yoram Hazony, who wrote the book 'the philosophy of the Hebrew scriptures' explores the possibility that the Hebrew scriptures being NOT a book of
simple irrational revelation (in line with Tertullians identification of 'carthage' with worldly wisdom, and Jerusalem, with revelation), but
rather, a book of PHILOSOPHY, of REASON, written as allegory, as metaphor. In short, the religion of the Jews saw this world as symbolism, and so they
expressed their philosophy of the world in terms of symbolism.
Hazony really makes his point with the analysis of the Biblical Hebrew word דבר Davar. Davar mostly appears in the Bible to mean 'things', but it
appears also quite often as "word", and some times, as 'thought'. This conflating of things, words and thoughts into the same word has many
interesting philosophical implications. It means that physical things, words (or things spoken), as well as thoughts, are essentially bound up with
the same reality: in objective existence. It's in objective existence, in physicality, that one is able to utter some truth in his 'words', but the
words themselves, as well as thoughts (speech in the mind) are predicated on the validity of things in themselves.
This of course contradicts the Platonian notion of 'ideas as things'. That truth is predicated in some other realm, which only uses the physical
world to convey itself. The Hebrews disagreed; they thought truth is established not on the basis of some arbitrary notion of 'things in
themselves', but rather, we derive a concept of truth from our experience of things in this world. Therefore, truth derives from our experience of
At the same time, the Hebrews were fascinated with mans power of freedom. Hazony argues that Hebrew Metaphysics is expressed in the first portions of
the Bible, in the book of Genesis, whereas other parts or portions of the books of the Hebrews expresses different
approaches along the
spectrum of the metaphysics established in the first chapters of Genesis.
In Genesis, Cain does what in fact God tells him to do; God condemned Adam to 'till the soil'. When Cain brings a sacrifice to God, he does so with
the fruit of the land. He does exactly what God 'told' him to do. Yet, God rejects him. Conversely, Abel brings God a sheep from the field. As
Hazony explains, Abel actually disobeys God's command by becoming a Shepherd (a leitmotif of the Hebrew scriptures) and offering up a sheep; God
accepts Abels sacrifice.
In other words, instead of accepting things as they naturally are - perhaps an implied premise in all pagan metaphysics - God expects man to learn
from his experience, to build from his experiences, and to seek the good for himself and for his loved ones.
Too much conversation into this matter will veer from the course I'm trying to pursue. But in short, there is a general 'metaphysics' of the world
which the Hebrew scriptures ensconced as Gods explicit will. This 'explicit' will which the Hebrews lived by, contradicted with the philosophical
approaches of the Egyptians, Babylonians, and later on, the Greeks and the Romans (let's not forget all the Egyptian obelisks the Romans felt should
be transferred to Rome, possibly alluding to some essential kinship between Rome, Egypt, and, Christianity) which expressed a fundamental 'dualism'
between this world - which was treated as 'illusory' - and the metaphysical world, which finds expression in different ways in different epochs, but
which nevertheless persists down to our own day...