Monday, June 19, 2017

Eric Voegelin disappoints...

Related image

Eric Voegelin (1901-1985), an Austrian-German philosopher who fled Nazi Germany and eventually landed in America, wherein he made his home for the rest of his life, was a philosopher of history; but he was so much more than that description might conjure up to the layperson.  His writings affected me deeply in my youth, and I went on to devour all his books and journal essays -- at least all I could track down.  One that had eluded me all these years was titled, "Hitler and the Germans", a series of lectures he gave in 1964 to students in the Arts Faculty at the University of Munich, Germany.  I finally got around to tracking it down on the Internet, and found a free pdf file of it (though this particular pdf is incomplete, I managed to track down a fuller file of it that supplied the missing chapters; though they -- I regret to say -- had no effect on my titular "disappointment").

It's amazing to contemplate that only 20 years prior to these 1964 lectures in which Voegelin, before an audience of German students and professors, searingly castigates not only Hitler and the Nazis but also German society for enabling their horrors -- he had to suddenly flee his own country of citizenship because the Nazi authorities were hunting him down, with the likely end of an execution or harsh imprisonment (his crime was to stand up for a Jewish colleague at the college where they both taught).  His German wife, Lissy, whom he had married a few years before, stayed behind, but luckily was able to escape also, and reunite later on with her husband Eric in London (Voegelin recounts how when he dined with Lissy and her parents, their dining room wall had a portrait of the new German hero of the people, Adolf Hitler).

At any rate, I avidly awaited delving into these lectures.  And I was not disappointed most of the time; indeed, as usual when I have read Voegelin, I was delighted and enriched at nearly every turn by his scintillating perspicacity.  Then I made the mistake of remembering the related problem of Hitler and Christianity vs. Hitler and Islam.  I already knew, from tracking down various quotes from Hitler's "Table Talks" that, contrary to the politically correct paradigm, Hitler was not "a Christian" in any meaningful, substantive sense, but only one on paper, so to say.  In fact, those remarks recorded in the "Table Talks" indicate that Hitler despised Christianity, while he admired Islam.  A couple of my previous essay go into this:

Hitler and Islam

Definitive Hitler quotes

So as I was reading along, and my eyes alighted upon the subtitle, "Hitler's Views on Religion" (part 16, pp. 124-128), I thought to myself, surely, in this small subsection, Voegelin will at least allude to Hitler's hatred of Christianity and admiration for Islam.  Alas, that was not to be.  Instead, Voegelin goes on at length in comparing Hitler's flavor of Christianity to some modern deformation of it popular in Germany among the "petit-bourgeois" liberals (while in his later chapters 4 and 5, "Descent into the Ecclesiastical Abyss: The Evangelical Church" and "Descent into the Ecclesiastical Abyss: The Evangelical Church", respectively, his concern is only to poke and prod with his surgical scalpel the various diseased tissues of modern Western -- mostly modern German -- Christianity).  Most, if not all, of Voegelin's analysis struck me as spot-on; which made the odd lacuna of a complete absence of any mention at all of Hitler's contempt for Christianity and admiration for Islam all the odder -- particularly as Voegelin in his overall discussion of his subject sees fit to consult the "Table Talks" numerous times as useful.  How he could actually write a subsection entitled "Hitler's Views on Religion" and utterly omit Hitler's contempt for Christianity and admiration for Islam rather caught my breath at the time.  The most generous assumption one could make to explain this strange lapse in Voegelin's otherwise laser-like analytical eye would chalk it up to the general amnesia about Islam that has so curiously affected so many 19th and 20th century intellects of the West.  The fact, however, that some did not forget how pernicious Islam is -- among them John Quincy Adams, Mark Twain, Carl Jung, and most notably Teddy Roosevelt -- makes it more difficult to excuse someone like Voegelin.

I've been disappointed by Voegelinians before on this subject, but never Voegelin himself.  I suppose there is some small cold comfort in the fact that it was a sin of omission, not commission...


Steve12 said...

This is simply quote mining. Didn't Hitler also say that Muslims were apes that wanted to be whipped?

Highlight only the information that makes your point (as in, obsess over THIS "Mountain of Data" and ingore the other one). Data should be in double scare quote marks but I think the limit of punctuation has been reached here.

And anyway, it's meaningless even considering your poor scholarship. Hitler also liked breakfast and dogs. This is just dumb...

If you had all of the this dispositive evidence of all Muslim's irredeemability you wouldn't need these reaches...

Hesperado said...

At least my supposed "quote-mining" is backed up by evidence, unlike Steve12's pot-kettle-black tit-for-tat. And at least I bother to spend the time and effort verifying something with the primary source -- viz., just now, I searched "ape" in the Trevor-Roper edition of Hitler's Table Talk 1941-1944: Secret Conversations available at Google Books. Only 8 results came up: The first was Hitler comparing Freemasons to "apes"; the second had Hitler call all men "apes" if they were given "complete liberty of action"; the third was Hitler complaining about the education system, saying that if teachers had their way, they would "turn us into erudite apes like themselves"; the fourth was Hitler pondering evolution theory and how it could well be that if we found a Neanderthal man he would like an "ape"; the fifth was Hitler using the word "ape" as a verb referring to National Socialists ("...there will never be any possibility of National Socialism's setting out to ape religion..."); the sixth was again Hitler pondering our evolution from apes; the seventh is Hitler again reiterating that "...National Socialism must not ape religion"; and the eighth is Hitler again thinking of biological evolution of all men from apes.

Nothing there about Muslims being "apes". (And even if there were, Steve12 hasn't shown how that would cancel out Hitler's clearly demonstrated contempt for Christianity and admiration for Islam; nor why we should not mention that most apposite fact when discussing "Hitler and Religion".)

At any rate, the "quote-mining" fallacy charge, like any other logical fallacy accusation, can be misused. To be persuasive, it would at the very least have to show how the argued force of the adduced quotes are annulled by some other data. Some quotes are sufficiently damning in and of themselves -- example, if in the journals of some candidate for US President, we found five sentences in various places where in no uncertain terms he expresses hatred of blacks because of their blackness, it is hard to imagine any other quotes elsewhere in his journals or any context that would redeem him. It's probably possible; but one would have to have a very creative imagination to come up with such a saving scenario -- once it is determined (as it is with Hitler's quotes on Islam and Christianity which I quote in my linked article in this post above) that the Presidential candidate meant it and wasn't speculating about someone else's thoughts.

[Note to self: Must return to the Apple Store and get a new "Avoid Steve12 Red Herrings" app; there must be a bug or virus in the one I purchased...]

Anonymous said...

The trolls on your blog are more like ogres. I assume you've tied this:

Steve12 said...

Super-scholar couldn't find it in Wikipedia:

You're about as good at this as you are guitar. That was not a compliment, and I say that as an actual player.

And you completely ignore the other part of my post, which is - so what? Hitler probably liked going to the beach. Is the beach now bad? No. This is just another way of being selective in your evaluation of evidence such that your desired outcome is assured.

Steve12 said...

That's it - block everyone who questions your reasoning and call them trolls.


Richard James said...

Hmm, I smell rabbit droppings. Do you smell them too, Hesp?

Steve12 said...

OMG, Richard is a RIOT!!!! Rabbit droppings! HA HA HA HA!!!!

Ohh...God...I gotta take a break - my stomach hurts from the laughing!

You may be too dumb to respond to anything I've said Richard, but YOU ARE ADORABLE!!!!

Hesperado said...

To Anonymous at 11:36, I prefer to just leave comments as they are, in the name of free speech, even from hostile sophists like Steve12. If anyone wishes to construct an argument defending his specious tissue of red herrings, ego quoque (a variant on tu quoque as I see it), moving goalposts, etc., I'm all ears, so to speak (assuming that non-Steve12 would actually be not Steve12). Otherwise, I trust intelligent readers to exercise discernment & discrimination.


Ego Quoque --

The Hesperado policy on comments for Dummies 101 --
[not to imply that Anonymous is a "Dummy", just one of my many cheeky titles]

A previous comment by me after I had had quite enough from "Steve12" --

Hesperado said...

Richard James,

Could be droppings from the Rabbit Pack. He resembles "Philip Jihadski" sort of a mutant hybrid of "Philip Jihadski" and "Angemon" (the former for his hostility, the latter for his sophistry); however, since I stopped reading him for his last dozen or so comments (other than one lapse for which I repent), I'm unable to analyze his writing further. Anyway, I have more important things to do -- like eat glass, for instance...

Steve12 said...

What nonsense.

I asked you very reasonable questions that you refuse to (more likely can't) answer. You can't even answer the most simple and obvious criticisms or questions,such as (a) how the length of your list of Muslim violence speaks to their capabilities in being an existential threat or (b) why you don't compare your list of Muslim violence against Westerners to a list of Western violence against Muslims.

What kind of assertions can only stand up among a group of "believers"? Assertions that are nonsense, as yours are.

My joking is completely orthogonal to my actual points, and you know it.

You're now coward twice over; once for not copping to the logical conclusions of all the tripe on your blog (WWIII and/ or genocide), and a second time for ignoring my good faith questions and comments by portraying me as simply a troll because I make jokes.

And I was right about your guitar playing to boot, but I forgot to mention that the songwriting isn't much better. If I were in the PacNW I'd offer you some guitar lessons. I'll be there in August if you're interested....

Egghead said...

Hey Steve,

Let's narrow the thesis: Muslims are an existential threat to clitorises.

Among other topics (like how the Muslim infiltration dynamic is simply copying the Jewish infiltration dynamic), Gates of Vienna came to a point of censoring my comments about the demonstrable Muslim threat to clitorises - which was very curious and disheartening since over half the world has clitorises - legitimately billions in this case!

Plenty of objective evidence supports my claim - and the Muslim 'War on Clitorises' (TM) both well and truly predates colonialism and modern Western meddling in Muslim lands.

The modern West needs to expel barbarous Islam so that (as the Muslim Obama would promise and renig):

If you like your clitoris, you can keep your clitoris.

P.S. I bet you're a real dick. Wink! :)

Egghead said...

Hello Fruit and Flower, I've been long waiting for you to catch up. The signs from the past were always there: the father whose business partners were a long list of Jews, the childhood neighborhood and school, the brother who pledged a Jewish fraternity, the rental policies (cited in an AA action) that explicitly gave first rental preference to Jews, the kids who married Jews, the daughter who 'converted' to Judaism, the alleged past boast that the Republican base would be easy to 'spoof' to get elected, the citation of the favorite Bible verse being 'An eye for an eye,' the claim that he could shoot (murder?) a random person on the street and still get elected, etc.

Look at his demeanor and emotion at the Wailing Wall.

Where is the pic of him visiting a Christian holy site, kneeling in a church, or holding a cross or Bible with the same demeanor and emotion as he shows at the Wailing Wall?

Egghead said...

Hey Steve,

Here's some Ann Coulter for you:

Steve12 said...

Ann Coulter who says purposefully stupid but controversial things to make money.

Why on Earth would I ever be dumb enough to play into that? Link not read - but thanks.

Steve12 said...

Always read above before commenting.

Egghead is some sort of Alt right nut with nothing to say but dark insinuations about the Joooos! (everything in these circles always goes back to the Jews). You see, him and his small cadre of fellow losers have outsmarted everyone, and knows that there's a CONSPIRACY (infiltration plan) afoot!

As a scientist I have great admiration for Jewish culture, and here's why:

It's called ACHIEVEMENT Egghead. While you morons are going around talking about how the Joooos are conspiring and all this other horseshit, Jews are ACHIEVING. I admire that. It's ironic that your life will likely be saved by the very same Jews who you say are conspiring against you.

What have you achieved, Egghead? Hurts, doesn't it. Why not cut out the horseshit and GET TO WORK.

Bottom line. Egghead is likely a one of these guys who's angry at the world for his sad lot in life, and this has driven him into nonsense. Well Egghead, I don't do nonsense.

Thanks for playing though!

Egghead said...

Hey Steve,

I'll 'play' with you until I get bored, but it will be better if you are polite. You're asking some relevant questions. You're just QUITE spiritually confused - which is WHY you care so much - because your spirit is disquieted and you are searching for answers that make you 'feel' better. I'm happy to elucidate in the vain hope that you are willing to be reached - versus your being just a very poor propaganda mouthpiece for ideas that you fundamentally fail to understand OR your being a paid disrupter.

I advise you to begin thinking about the concept of agency. Both Jews and Muslims have agency in good and evil actions. You appear to give agency to white Westerners (Christians and atheists) while depriving Jews and Muslims of agency.

You have ZERO problem attributing evil to both white Westerners and Muslims. What then is YOUR excuse for failing to attribute evil to Jews? You have accused Hesperado of measurement bias - of failing to see or admit that the list of white Western violence against Muslims is comparable to Muslim violence against white Westerners - essentially accusing Hesperado of holding the West to a different standard than Muslims. Yet, YOU are doing the same with Jews....

Worse yet, add to that omission on your part that you fail to understand the complicated historical and present role of Jews as (often) behind the scenes but very powerful rulers of BOTH the West and the Muslim world via monetary policy. Perhaps it is NOT as much the white Christian West who has been bombing the Muslim world as it has been ruling Jews using the white Christian West as proxies for their aggression.

P.S. A real dick should be able to see the Frankfurters. Start there. Wink! :)

Steve12 said...

"I'll 'play' with you until I get bored"

You're too late, I already am. You're a carbon copy of your Ilk. You're confused by your failure in life because you've overestimated your intellectual capacity. Now you cling to conspiracy theories that give you a scapegoat for your failures. YOU aren't a failure, Egghead! It's the JOOOOS!!!!!


At least Hesperado is sort of interesting...

Egghead said...

OK, I'm bored, too, but I'll recap for you:

At the behest and expectation of Muslim men, Muslim women have been forcibly holding down little girls and have been using crude unsterilized instruments to cut the clitorises off of a vast number of very young girls BEFORE, during, and since any Western colonization and/or meddling in Muslim lands.

Muslim dominated countries are a demonstrable existential threat to clitorises.

Save your scorn for Muslim evil - and those who import and support that evil - of whom sadly Jews are a major part. Until Jews confront and stop their historical and present contribution in advancing Islam in the West, Jews bear a blood red stain on their collective soul.

Steve12 said...

Oh, Egghead, I'm not reading anything you're saying re: content. I've pegged you. I know you. Nothing you say has any value - you're a loser.

Ya know, maybe - MAYBE - if you cut the nonsense and become a productive member of society, you might actually get to have sex with a woman. MAYBE....

Egghead said...

Clitorises R Us (TM): Save us! Save us! Save us from Steve and the Muslim MEN that he cares about more than us!

Quiz time: If a real dick like Steve cares more about other dicks than clits, does that make him: 1) gay, 2) sexist, 3) misogynist, 4) all of the above.

Egghead said...

Hey Steve, you're such a self-centered dick that you misunderstand my purpose in replying to you now. See before, I was hoping to reach you, but now I'm trying to counteract you.

Until the censors appear, I can match you comment for comment, but my clit comments will contain truth and facts whereas your dick comments are just, well, dick comments.

Steve12 said...

Thanks Egghead!

Here's a place you can start looking for a job. Then maybe you can move out of mom's basement:

Remember: you CHOOSE to be a loser, so you can also CHOOSE not to be one.

Good luck and go get 'em!

Egghead said...

Hey Steve,

Remember: You CHOOSE to support Muslims who forcibly hold down little girls and chop off their clits, so you can also CHOOSE to support clitorises.

Steve12 said...

Just as an aside...

Imagine how stupid you have to be to think that not believing Jewish conspiracy nonsense means you are for genital mutilation?

Yet this is his/her big 'gottcha', from the scanning I've done - along with Type-Os of course.

I take it back. I don't think you dropped out of college. Anyone this dumb couldn't possibly attain a GED.

Egghead said...

Ghira, Ghira, Ghira. Abusive outrage. Right now, you're a sad and scary dick, Steve, but you can CHOOSE to change and be a good dick.

Why does supporting Muslims who cut off little girls' clits make YOU feel better? Are little girls' clits so powerful as to make grown men cower and seek to violently destroy the little girls' clits?

Oh, and you are just SO 'interested' in me - and lizards evidently! There's YOUR tell! Ha!

Did you know that, to keep Jewish Frankfurter Dick communism going, 1/3 of Poland was PAID to spy on the other 2/3 of Poland - and make Poland miserable? You'll be happy to know that a bunch of the informants were Catholic priests with access to the not-so-sacred secrets of the confessional.