By Michael Mannion
We do not need a bridge between mysticism and mechanism. Neither do we need a fusion or amalgam of the two. No solution to the problems that threaten to end our existence here on Earth will be found in a synthesis of "science" and "spirit". Science and spirit are the ways of thinking that have created the deadly problems we face. The two great thought systems of mysticism and mechanistic thinking have brought us to the brink of oblivion. We need to transcend the mystical-mechanistic world view that endangers Life on our planet.
In the previous Mindshift 2001 article, written a month before the WTC attack, the war in Afghanistan and the anthrax bioterrorist mailings, I wrote "Mysticism and mechanism will kill us all. Is there any hope of finding a new way of knowing and being before it is too late?" The use of mechanistic technologyówhether it be turning airplanes into weapons of mass destruction, using the mail for acts of germ warfare or some form of nuclear terroróby mystically motivated individuals or groups is a living example of what was meant.
Human society the world over is now, and for thousands of years has been, characterized by a deadly combination of mechanistic-mystical thinking. This is clearly evident in the written record of mankind, from our most ancient writings to the present day. The split between "science" and "spirit" is present as far back as one can look. The scourge of mystical thinking is apparent in the endless series of wars that have resulted in the deaths and maiming of untold billions of people all across the planet for millennia. As human beings developed increasingly sophisticated mechanistic technology, the destructive force of ever more deadly weapons of war was combined with the virulent power of mystical ideology, all of which has brought us to todayís perilous predicament.
Many today view mysticism as an entirely benign phenomenon in the life of earthís peoples. However, to hold such a view, it is necessary to ignore or "explain away" the scores of centuries of carnage that have been caused by mystical thinking. The meditating sage, the religious mendicant deep in prayer, the secular seeker connecting with "other dimensions" are merely the surface of the phenomenon of mysticism. Below the surface are the wars described in the Vedas and the Bible; the savagery of the Greek and Roman eras; the brutality of Alexander; the Catholic plague of killings in the Middle Ages, peaking with the Crusades and the Inquisition; the Protestant religious wars in Europe; the slaughter of the indigenous peoples worldwide in the name of Christ; the Hindu-Muslim wars that have raged on for centuries; the eons of murders in China's long history; the Nazi holocaust. Unfortunately, this enumeration barely begins to describe the savagery inspired by mystics armed with life-hating ideologies and mechanistic weaponry.
It is not an accident that humanity finds itself in this situation. It is our rigid, mystico-mechanical character structure and armored organisms that have created this world in our own image. Rigid character structures and bodies are problems for Earthlings all over the globe. And we recreate our rigidity in newborns everywhere at birth and throughout childhood.
The thwarting of the movement and expression of the Life Force in the children of Earth is the core of the tragedy that is engulfing all of us. It creates the hidden hatred of life in the hearts of Earthlings everywhere. This is the source of the terror experienced on our planet.
Mechanistic-mystical thinking, combined with the irrationality of politics, will only deepen the misery so prevalent today, eventually ending the human experiment. Is there a way out? Is there a path that can lead to the beginnings of a solution? There is. But few have the ears to hear or the eyes to see. The Dark Ages never really ended.