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Thought Pieces

Michelangelo's God and Adam on Dr John Dunn. Doctor John Dunn

Gentile ‘meets’ Steiner

Gentile ‘meets’ Steiner


By taking idealism to its logical conclusion, in an effort to save the ‘I’, Gentile had in fact taken the long route to pulling a pall over the self, of which Spinoza had been guilty in a much more direct manner.
John Dunn

Logocentric Gentile

Logocentric Gentile


It is clear that Gentile had reached the outer limits of philosophical idealism. If he extended the logic of his own argument, thinking would take place without the thinker. If this were the case, no man as an individual, not even Gentile, is real. It is only the act of thinking which is real, and as such it cannot be attached to an unreal thinker.
John Dunn

Gentile counters the Doctrine of Realism

Gentile counters the Doctrine of Realism


Man is not man naturally, but becomes man through self-knowledge and self-choice. Man is a spirit because he can choose to be a beast or an angel. Freedom implies growth from within, not from without. The growth of a plant illustrates the latter; the growth of a man illustrates the former.
John Dunn

Coleridge, Vico and Gentile

Coleridge, Vico and Gentile


There are echoes of Fichte and Coleridge in the shift from a Spinozist left radicalism to the political right. For Gentile, as for the others who had followed a similar path of political conversion, this shift was prompted by an urge to defend the ‘I’. But Gentile believed that he had introduced something new into the struggle, something which overcame the failings of all previous idealisms.
John Dunn

Coleridge - On the Constitution of the State and Church.

Coleridge - On the Constitution of the State and Church.


Through a combination of leadership and educing (Fichte’s terminology was translated as summoning, but had similar connotations), the ‘latent man’ would emerge from his former bestial and sub-human state.
John Dunn

Summoning and synthesis

Summoning and synthesis


It is only through the chance encounter with a fully human being that the slave will realise that he is being subjected to an injustice by a third party, otherwise he thinks the present state of affairs is the natural order of being.
John Dunn

Escaping Spinozist hypostasis - (Hell in Dante’s terms)

Escaping Spinozist hypostasis - (Hell in Dante’s terms)


The thing-in-itself was not merely the unknowable cause of experience, but much more fundamentally the hypostasis of the highest good. In attempting to de-hypostasise this concept, Fichte was saying that there is no God, no divine justice, except that which we create here on earth.
John Dunn

Fichtean successor to feudalism

Fichtean successor to feudalism


Fichte defined what it is to be human as a freedom from necessity. Schelling, Hegel and, ultimately Marx, as followers of Spinoza, denied that humanity in a submission to necessity.
John Dunn

The mask of Marxism

The mask of Marxism


Marxism is the basis of all the so-called Left and Right political and philosophical creeds of our time. Anarchism, liberalism, libertarianism, neo-conservatism and Marxism itself are all rooted ultimately in Spinozism and Kabbalism, and all serve to promote Tikkun.
John Dunn

Anti-globalist Fichte

Anti-globalist Fichte


Fichte’s distrust of international markets made him an early anti-globalisation activist. As such his ideas remain relevant as an alternative to the ‘consensus’ narrative of the liberal-Marxist-capitalist nexus and its underpinning Spinozism.
John Dunn

Fichte's Closed Commercial State

Fichte's Closed Commercial State


Fichte believed that everyone should have work, because work, provided that it is carried out without coercion, counters natural human indolence and helps bring our desires and our capacities into balance. Trade, on the other hand, thought Fichte, produces war, inequality.
John Dunn

State within a state

State within a state


The ‘state within a state’ rebuttal represented Fichte’s climax of conscious reaction to Spinozist kabbalism, his awakening to the socio-political and economic implications within the universalising tikkun of Spinozism.
John Dunn

Distinguished man

Distinguished man


Freedom was not for Fichte an end in itself, or something to be found in Nature. It was certainly not a return to anything that once existed. Freedom to Fichte meant an independence from nature. Only then would there be scope for the spontaneous and creative activity, which Dante had held analogous to that of the first Creator.
John Dunn

Moral destiny


Moral destiny



Fichte spelt out a specific, all‐transforming, intervention into history, advocating a socialist utopia that emphasised a shared language, culture and moral destiny.
John Dunn

Humanism restored

Humanism restored


Fichte contended that God is not dead Being before which man is passive, but rather pure action. In effect Fichte posited God as the moral world order, which humanity continually strives to realise here on earth.
John Dunn

Spinozism as Marxism

Spinozism as Marxism


The Romantic Movement was an emanation of the Promethean struggle for freedom against a mind-independent reality, ‘the struggle between good and evil the essential wheel in the working of things’, first articulated by Zarathustra.
John Dunn

What ought to be

What ought to be


The Romantic Movement in turn will then be seen as an emanation of the Promethean struggle for freedom against a mind-independent reality, ‘the struggle between good and evil the essential wheel in the working of things’, first articulated by Zarathustra.
John Dunn

Resurrection of the self



Resurrection of the self




The concept of the thing-in-itself was a residuum of the Spinozist Substance (rooted as we know in Lurianic Kabbalah), which Kant’s Copernican Revolution combatted, but did not fully destroy. The post-Kantians intended to finish the job. Conscious that Kant’s thing-in-itself was a creation of mental activity, the post-Kantian idealists attempted to banish this Spinozist residuum from the world.
John Dunn

Grail question

Grail question


This Grail is concerned with 'carrying on Christ’s effectiveness in this world,' as a vessel through which the divine can have its way. The inner Christ is Logos incarnated. This is the Grail. The Grail is there to be discovered, but first the individual must ask the Grail question - ‘who am I?’
John Dunn

Sam Decker and the grail vision in John Cowper Powys’s Glastonbury Romance - some thoughts

Sam Decker and the grail vision in John Cowper Powys’s Glastonbury Romance - some thoughts


Perhaps the philosophy that Powys’s actively created self most closely resembles is that of Ernst Junger. Late in his life, Junger published a novel called Eumeswil which postulated the concept of the ‘Anarch,’ a concept that is modelled on Max Stirner’s idea of the ‘Egoist’, a model that too had a profound influence upon Powys.
John Dunn

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