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Defining 'The Meaning of Life in Western Culture'

Reader comment on item: How Fares Western Civ?
in response to reader comment: Tovey: Reading old texts, myth and meaning!

Submitted by M Tovey (United States), Jul 23, 2020 at 17:26

Defining 'The Meaning of Life in Western Culture'
There is a simple reason that mankind has a history of such a complex sociological manifestation of anti-social behaviors and displays of ages long and deeply rooted antipathies towards others that do not conform to self-imposed imagery, both real and imagined, some acted upon, some threatened. As some have theorized; it's in the DNA.
Humanity has suffered its greatest tragedies from failing in the beginning to recognize why mankind exists in the first place, then taking out the frustration on others that do not conform to the self-imposed imagery that the internal force of self is to be served as the priority of life and all others are to be made subservient. History is littered with colossal wreckage.
At the suggestion of referring to a psychological work (Jungian by all appearances) as a means to discern why human perceptions of life are the complex manifestations requiring 'mapping' as the title invokes, a quick (and decidedly insufficient) look into that possibility returned a just as quick response of reminding this observer that such intensive reading had been a thing of the past and a deeper source of study is more easily accomplished as was earlier mentioned, going through 'Readers Digest' analyses of more contemporary interpretations of such things, such as yours. It makes for compelling reading by this account.
Dr. Pipes, in prompting this discussion to see if there is a way to 'predict' an outcome of the current world's apparent epic and tragic journey into the unknown, each of us that are concerned as to how and why our individually affected lives are going to be affected requires introspection way beyond any individual capacity of rational, ideological, and for some, theosophical meanings, in order to just make sense, let alone glean any deeper insight as to how survival of the societal settings we are a part of will work out. Western culture has no advantage in this determination. Analysis through psychological interpretations of the 'western' psyche do not lend anything towards reaching a contentment of thought, or peace of mind.
Discerning the dilemmas of this world's apparent inability to come to grips with just learning to live together was my own version of Jordan Peterson's searching for the meaning of life, filling many more volumes than a mere twenty years could accommodate. As has been mentioned before, this observer was intercepted in life by that which many would dismiss as 'religious,' but technically, 'religious' as a title is insufficient to describe the worldview subscribed to now. Monotheistic or polytheistic perceptions are hard to use as well, since the world has redefined its idea of who is Deity and who it not: so the most compelling is that of the Gospel narratives, by whose witnesses, a belief system rejected by the world still survives and its Divinity survives.
A quick note, that going back to the comment of [(L)last, my interest in old and "holy" text started when I read the brilliant story of Isis, Osiris, Horus and Set], there is the intrigue of how these ancient narratives still can capture the minds of modern thinking and how some concepts of modern culture are influenced such things, especially in religious settings. Of such is archeology in Egyptian circles; which poses a question: is the Coptic form of monotheistic belief influenced here?
In the final analysis, perusing your posts here are among the more intriguing and though we are separated by the obvious differences, your response was/is appreciated in the sincerity in which it presented itself.

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