Better understanding of the Prince of the World.

December 27, 2016

I’m getting a better picture of the Prince of the World. He promotes conflict and fear and hatred. The military-industrial complex, so feared by President Eisenhower, is a big part of this, and amplifies the news of rapes and robberies and violent deaths in the street in order to increase gun sales and the sale of home security devices and even the various insurances. It also promotes fear and conflict between different countries and different groups. It means jobs for policemen and security guards and warriors and prison guards. It calls for people to save up additional funds (more than they likely will need) in order to have enough if bad times and shortages come (which goes by the name of prudence, and which provides a semblance of security). The more conflict and the more fear the better for this Worldly Prince. And most of us are involved in the propagation of the causes of fear and don’t realize we are following his instructions.

Jesus is exactly the opposite, the one surrounded by “fear not.” If we can follow Jesus we can eliminate conflict and fear and hatred. It won’t be easy and it will call for a communal sort of organization for the world, at least with regard to individual talents, where innovation is undertaken for the sake of glory, and not for money, sort of like high school sports and profitless competition and even the Olympics. I like very much John Rawls‘ thinking. Since nature apportions talents randomly, this means they belong to the species and not to the individual. Consequently each person should be given the wherewithal to develop his talent and live comfortably . . .  but no more than is necessary.*

* There was an interesting article in the New York Times about the communalism of the early church, the church closest to Jesus in terms of time and spirit. Also Rawls may have been prompted by Alexis de Tocqueville’s writings of the mid 19th century where he spoke of the “gifts which heaven shares out by chance.”

This last weekend our friends, GF and DC, visited from Atlanta. During our conversation GF spontaneously gave me two tips about mopping floors and purchasing furniture for the deck. They both were good and will enable me to save some money. If GF were a lackey of the Prince of the World, he would have calculated his advantage and perhaps not have relayed these two tips to me unless he could get something in return. “It would only be fair”, he might say, referring to some tit-for-tat.

If we could get closer to spontaneous living, we would share and find that we are all getting better off as a result. Gandhi once said that God has already given us the solutions to all the problems that shall ever arise for us and that God did it fragmentedly so that all partake to one degree or another. This ties in closely with Rawls’ thinking above. And so the fragments must be put together by sharing, except the Prince of the World tells us not to give it away, but to sell it for profit. “It’s only fair”.

See also Loss of Spontaneity and the Incognito Easter Message. And see this article on the cigarette industry (which very much represents the Prince of the World), and also this one on the abuse of veterans by the for-profit schools.

Author contact: pmr#$kantwesley.com, replacing #$ with @

 

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