Developing a Transitional Culture
By Richard Kieninger
Many detailed discussions have been made about the Apollonian (patriarchal) and Dionysian (matriarchal) world views. As a brief review:
Apollonian thinking is competitive, acquisitive, at odds with God and Nature, makes laws, must control, is work conscious and technological (Western man); Dionysian thinking is creative, cooperative, happy, full of wonder and awe, carefree, one with God and Nature and artistic (Eastern man).
The Brotherhoods purposefully encouraged the development of Patriarchal societies in order to move mankind into thinking and working to improve himself and his world and to develop technology. Matriarchy, as Edenic as it may seem, does not spur mankind into growing and changing. A matriarchal culture may stay essentially the same for millennia.
A major task we have at hand as aspirants to the Brotherhoods and co-developers of the Nation of God is to bring into balance the extreme viewpoints of Apollonian and Dionysian thinking. Beyond recognizing the different qualities of the Apollonian and Dionysian extremes in our personality, we must also encourage development of a culture in the community of Adelphi that assists in our personal transformations and those of future generations. Change is easy to talk about but difficult to accomplish. We need transitional stages to help our thinking and behavior to evolve step-by-step. Consider, if you would, some of the following values as needed in a transitional culture.
(1) Respect for Rights and Needs of Every Person
Certainly the founders of the U.S.A. recognized this as important to a free and Democratic nation. Compared to many countries in the world today the U.S.A. can still be recognized for this quality. However, somewhere along the way, that value has been vastly compromised. This basic value must be re-established in the hearts and minds of people if the new nation is to thrive. Respect for the rights and needs of every person means listening and speaking to people of all ages and beliefs (whether individually or as a group) and recognizing their uniqueness and their innate worth as human Egos. Respect for the rights and needs of every person obviously means being conscious of not interfering in the environment of another. This includes non-judgmental attitudes and actions toward those around you, maintenance of quiet and serene surroundings, and recognition that the integrity of every family unit is basic to a stable and secure society.
(2) Monetary Reward and/or Power Can Not Be the Primary Goal of Individual Effort
Our country was established in such a way as to allow any man or woman who had the initiative and know how to create and expand their own business enterprises. This is well and good. However, our Patriarchal evolution has equated personal worth and masculinity with money and power. The pure enjoyment of creative efforts and accomplishment through work has been diminished.
In Adelphi, volunteer labor is necessary to make all aspects of the community grow. There are four principal satisfactions to be derived from working for Adelphi: the obvious and concretely visible building of one’s own community, the inner satisfaction derived from a job well done, the enjoyment and camaraderie found in working with others, and the individual challenge toward Egoic excellence. A person joining Adelphi shares his/her skills and expertise with others in the community and everyone learns and grows. A person of monetary wealth holds the same status and number of votes as anyone else in the community. Talent and successful effort earn greater responsibility, not power.
(3) Work for the Common Good; Something Bigger Than Oneself
This statement in itself may sound socialistic, but it is not. It is closely related to point number two. Modern psychologists note that one of the chief causes of personal unhappiness, dissatisfaction, and nervous restlessness in our society is that people are self-centered and have no goals or efforts that add meaning to their existence. When you help others, you generally gain as much is not more in the non-tangible, inner rewards than merely the object of your efforts. In a non-cooperative culture such as America’s, it can be quite a revelation to find that working together can be fun, non-competitive, and challenging to your creative and innovative thinking. Depending upon the task at hand, sometimes you are called upon to organize and direct group efforts, and at other times you are learning some new skill under the tutelage of someone else.
There seems also to be a greater respect for maintenance and care of given projects that change and improve the environment that you and your friends personally had a hand in shaping. You are more aware of the cost in both the materials and efforts required.
(4) A Closely Integrated, Secure Economy Reduces the Need for Individual Ownership
One reason Americans must spend so much time working is in order to acquire and replace all of the miscellaneous things necessary to maintain a modern household. Imagine the money you could save if your house was built to last several centuries, if you didn’t need a fence for your yard, a lawn mower, your own washer and dryer, a complete set of woodworking and handyman tools that you use maybe twice a year, a personal wide-screen color TV and videotape equipment, an assortment of all the major toys on the market for your children, bicycles for every member of the family, two cars that sit parked 90% of the time—the list can go on and on. Civilization has already determined it is better to have community waste treatment and water supply rather than each family having to dig its own well and treat its own waste products. How much more practical to have a wider variety of tools and equipment and sundry items of high quality that can be rented. As we learn to treat the common or personal property of others with the same respect and care as if we personally purchased and owned it, we are on our way to balancing the patriarchally-induced drive to own and possess and control. Although it seems to be difficult for Americans to learn, it is a karmic principle that when you borrow something belonging to another person, it should be returned in as good if not better condition. Perhaps our “disposable” society has taught us not to take care of things, but rather to throw them out and buy a new one when it is broken. In order to continue a high standard of living, excessive exploitation of the Earth’s natural resources must be curtailed for the benefit of our economy and the continued prosperity of generations.
(5) Businesses Must Become Benign, Non-Exploitive and Develop a Conscience
Technology and nature can exist side-by-side. Ralph Nader and other consumer-protection and ecology-minded groups have spoken out significantly over the past decade on this subject. We hear all too often of narrow minded, short-sighted corporations dumping poisons into our water supply, contaminating our air and food with insecticides, herbicides, hormones and growth stimulants. Drugs are put on the market that profit the manufacturer but cause all forms of gross deformities and irreversible damage to genes and chromosomes. This is all very unnecessary as well as being karmically disastrous. It is interesting to note that the Lemurian society once had ecological problems equivalent to ours and they turned it around. You have technology that works in accordance with the balance of Nature. Machinery and industrial equipment can be made to operate quietly. Food can be raised in healthy conditions not requiring poisonous sprays. We must stop someplace—sometime, otherwise we have everything to lose.
(6) Efficiency and Ecstasy Are Both Equally Important
Psychologists in our patriarchal culture are becoming increasingly aware of the psychic damage males have suffered under the “macho,” he-man ethic. Men and women are intelligent, capable Egos with the same basic needs and drives and are endowed with the same emotions. None of these should be “eliminated” if a society wishes to evolve balanced Egos. The equilateral triangle representing the Initiate indicates equal importance of the mental, idealistic, and practical parts of our being.
(7) Become a Whole Human Being
The end result of point number six is full appreciation of our humanness. To be able to fully love, be in touch with ourselves and those around us; to think clearly, intelligently, creatively; to have a strong, healthy body; to build, work and accomplish; to play, experience joy and awe; and to be curious and challenged by the wonders of the world around us is to be truly alive and enjoying all of our Egoic qualities that have been bestowed upon us for our benefit by the Creator.
To change values and social structures is a long and arduous task, even among people who want the change and see it as an improvement of life. Mistakes can be made and perfection of these values is several generations in the future. However, there are many rewards to be gained and valuable lessons learned along the way.