Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Personality and Systematic Reality - which is primary, which is the illusion?


The great division in the world's religions (although there are intermediate positions) is between those who regard Personality as primary, and those who regard (what I am terming) Systematic Reality as primary.

Christians in general and Mormons in particular regard Personality as primary: God is person-like at least and probably better considered an actual person.

Reality is significant because God is a person - it is His individual concern for Men in general and us in particular which means that reality really does, objectively, have meaning and purpose and that we are in a relationship with reality.

Because reality is ultimately about relationship - then reality is moral.


By contrast, other (including some 'Eastern') religions regard Systematic Reality as primary - that reality actually is a set of structures and processes that goes-on whether we know about it or not, indifferent-to and unaffected-by what anybody knows about it or not.

Therefore, Personality (the self, consciousness and the rest) is an illusion, some kind of localized mistake, or illusion.  Because the universe does not really mean anything by us.

In other words, the order of Systematic Reality is utterly independent from Personality and Relationship - and there is therefore no objectively-real morality.

It is an a-moral world (morality is just another of the errors and illusions).


What is not a logical conclusion, is to assert that, because Personality is an illusion (and although it makes no difference at all to the universe what we think about ourselves or it) therefore the wise man 'ought to' acknowledge that his personality is an illusion, and should seek to correct this illusion.

This is nonsense because when life is Systematic Reality, then it makes no ultimate difference whether we live or die or what we do while we suppose we are alive.

There can be no 'ought' and there can be no 'wisdom' except if the universe is primarily Personal.


And if the universe is primarily Personal - and if the implications are assimilated; then on the one hand life is meaningful and purposeful (whether we know and acknowledge this, or whether miss and we deny it) - also many of the traditional abstract, metaphysical, philosophical and theological concerns, questions, frames and explanations relating to Systematic Reality are dissolved into secondary and subordinate status.