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Σάββατο, 17 Φεβρουαρίου 2018

DHARMA According to Mahabharata

There is a story in the Mahabharata
Paramahamsa Satyananda

During the last phase of the war, Arjuna and his unknown step-brother, Karna, who was born to Arjuna's mother, Kunti, before her marriage, were fighting on the battlefield, each one for a different army. Suddenly, Karna's chariot would not move because something was wrong with the wheels.

So, when he got down to repair it, Arjuna stopped shooting. That is the dharma; when a man has no weapons, no defences, one should not kill him. At that moment, however,
Krishna asked Arjuna, "What are you doing?"
Arjuna replied, "He has no weapon, so I cannot kill him now."
Krishna said, "What do you mean? Now is the time. Finish him." Arjuna had to obey.

Karna said, "This is not dharma. You know I have no weapon."

Then Krishna laughed and said, "Yes, now you remember dharma, when the calamity falls on your head, but when the queen was being stripped naked in a public place, at that time did you remember the dharma?
When all of you conspired to burn the five brothers in the wax house, did you remember the dharma? And now when the calamity falls on your head, you remember the dharma!" 


Karna did not know what to do. He could not repair his chariot. He got up, fought and was killed. 


Krishna said, "Practise dharma with those who practise dharma. There is no use in practising virtue with a person who does not want to practise it."

So, these are the functions of the lower mind and the higher mind.
One should know when to use the forces of the higher mind and when to use the forces of the lower mind.
When the higher mind does not know how to function, it is always taken over by the lower mind.

If the higher mind wants to exist in its own higher spheres and does not want to become subservient to the lower mind, it has to act in a certain manner.
How it has to act is a very difficult thing to understand and many people do not know this.
They are always carried away by their emotions, and the higher mind loses ground when it is under the sway of those dominant emotions.

So, with a saint you should behave like a saint; with your mother you must behave like a daughter or son; with your wife or husband you must behave like a husband or wife. When a man is coming to your house with a definite purpose to do you some harm, then you must behave with him accordingly, and protect yourself. This is the dharma.

But if a man comes to your house intending to do you some wrong, and you do not stop him, if he gives you a slap on the right cheek and you show him your left cheek also, that is not dharma.
That has never been done.


~ Sri Paramahamsa Swami Satyananda Saraswati




Κυριακή, 7 Ιανουαρίου 2018

Herodotus testimony on the ancient Macedonians

In the following text we shall present the whole Herodotean testimony on the ancient Macedonian history. FROM HERODOTUS THE FATHER OF HISTORY. But before proceeding with the presentation we must clarify the four separate components of the ancient Macedonian history. These components can be seen as distinctions between the Macedonian Royal House and the Macedonian population and between Macedonia proper and the land over which the Macedonian king’s authority extended in various periods. Not all the king’s subjects were Macedonians and not all the king’s dominion was Macedonia.

Let’s start with the Macedonian Royal House. From antiquity it is known and well accepted as the Temenid Royal house because it’s founder Perdikkas I claimed Argive descent from Temenos, the Dorian conquer of the Peloponnesian Argos. Herodotus informs us in many passages about that.
In [V.22] he states: “And that these descendants of Perdikkas are Hellenes, as they themselves say, I happen to know myself, and not only so, but I will prove in the succeeding history that they are Hellenes. Moreover the Hellanodicai, who manage the games at Olympia, decided that they were so: for when Alexander wished to contend in the games and had descended for this purpose into the arena, the Hellenes who were to run against him tried to exclude him, saying that the contest was not for Barbarians to contend in but for Hellenes: since however Alexander proved that he was of Argos, he was judged to be a Hellene, and when he entered the contest of the foot-race his lot came out with that of the first.”
Also in [VIII.137] he writes about the Macedonian tradition about the arrival of Perdikkas I and his brothers from the Peloponnesian Argos to Western Pieria, and this is a text that we shall analyse later. Finally, the other important passage is the one in [IX.45] here he quotes the words of Alexander I, saying:
“…for I should not utter them if I did not care greatly for the general safety of Hellas, seeing that I AM A HELLENE MYSELF BY ANCIENT DESCENT and I should not wish to see Hellas enslaved instead of free.”
So Herodotus, who almost certainly has visited the Macedonian palace and met in person Alexander I, states that he personally knows and the Macedonian kings themselves admit that they are of Hellenic Argive descent, and that although some Greeks have questioned their Hellenism the Hellanodicai finally have recognized them as Greeks, after Alexander I proved his Hellenism. Herodotus´s statement“I happen to know myself” – has a particular meaning here because Herodotus was himself from Halicarnassus, an Argive-Doric colony and so was familiar with the specific Doric dialect of Argos. NGL Hammond is considered “the patriarch of Macedonian history” and has always considered the Temenid-Argive descent as true. In “History of Macedonia” (volume II, “the language of the Macedonians”) he states that while the general Macedonian population spoke the distinctive and conservative Macedonian dialect of Greek, the Royal family inside the palace spoke Argive Doric. So Herodotus could easily identify by first hand a speaker of Argive Doric – the dialect of his city’s metropolis – and that is why he “happens to know himself” that the Macedonian kings were Temenids from Argos.
Now let’s consider the most specific event, that is Alexander’s I participation in the Olympics. "Alexander I" was the first KNOWN Macedonian to do that. 

The Macedonian history under the first Temenids. "Perdikkas I" became king of Macedonia around 700 BC. He found the Macedonians as transhumant pastoralists in the Greek mountainous west Pieria. With the Temenids starts the Greek Macedonian Tribes expansion. In their first expansionary phase, they drove away the Other Greek Thracians Tribes from coastal Pieria and the Bottians from south Bottia and founded the capital of their new kingdom in Aegai. In a second expansionary phase later they drove away the remaining Bottians from northern Bottia – conquering the whole central Macedonian plain – and continued by eliminating the Almopians and the Eordeans and adding the territories of Almopia and Eordea into their kingdom. In that way, they formed the so-called Old Macedonian Kingdom, who’s borders were the river Axius in the east, Mt Barnous in the north, Mt Vitsi in the West and the Penius river in the south. If to all this we add Polyaenus’ testimony (a Macedonian himself) in his “Stratagems” (IV.1) where he informs us about a Macedonian-Illyrian conflict during the times of the second Temenid king (Argaeus, around 650 BC), during which Argaeus, due to a lack of male warriors, was compelled to resort in his famous stratagem to a force consisting of young women “dressed as male warriors” (Mimallones and the cult of Dionysus Pseudanor), and we also consider that the neighbouring Paeonians were at the summit of their strength during the period 550-511 BC, when they stretched their military operations from Northern Bottia (which they took from the Macedonians) to Propontis (they sieged the city of Perinthus), then we can make a solid conclusion: From 700 BC till 511 BC the Macedonians were in constant warfare in order to expand or defend their kingdom and the male manpower for these operations was at the limits of sufficiency.

What happened immediately after? In 511 BC the Persians managed to subdue the Paeonians ending in this way their period of strength. The Macedonians capitalising on the Paeonian impotence regained northern Bottia and brought again their eastern borders to the river Axius. This is definitely the time frame of the destruction of the Paeonian city Amydon on the eastern bank of the Axius by the Argeads that Strabo refers to in [VII.20] (“Amydon a city of Paeonians. The place was destroyed by the Argeads”). After that the Macedonians offered “earth and water” to the Persians – that is, voluntarily subdued themselves to the Persian king. By doing so they solidified their new re-acquisitions and further more the Persians rewarded them by appointing Amyntas I and his son Alexander later as general supervisors of a region – for the first time – much wider than the Old Macedonian Kingdom. So for the first time, the Macedonian kings expanded their control over non-Macedonian populations, that is, Paeonians, Thracians, Pelasgian Krestonians and the Greek Epeirotan tribes (or “Molossian” tribes as Hecataeus names them back in ca. 515 BC) of the later Upper Macedonia, that is, Elimeians, Tymphaeans, Orestae, Lynkestae and Pelagonians. This new situation explains perfectly the known Herodotean testimony of Alexander I´s speech to the Persians [V.20]: “report to the king who sent you that a Hellene, ruler under him of the Macedonians”. Many use this phrase in order to prove that while the Royal family was of Greek descent the Macedonians weren’t. Note that Alexander I was hereditary king of the original Macedonians and “ruler under the Persian king” of the new dominion that the Persian king rewarded him with. That means that the “Macedonians” in the above phrase are not the original Macedonians of the Old Kingdom – who considered Alexander king (βασιλεύς) and not “ruler under a king” (ὕπαρχος) – but the whole new heterogeneous population posted under Alexander’s authority by the Persians.
So after the Macedonian vassalisation to the Persians, the two centuries long warfare of the Macedonians finally ended and FOR THE FIRST TIME the physically qualified Macedonian men could afford to participate in the Olympics. That is why Alexander I chose to compete to the Olympics immediately after the Macedonian annexation to the Persians in 511 BC. Herodotus informs us in [V.20] that in 511 BC when the Persians arrived in Macedonia and king Amyntas I offered them a welcome-meal, and when Amyntas retired from the table “Alexander took his place” as a host. This means that Alexander I back in 511 BC was at least 12 years old and this can help us calculate the date of his participation in the Olympics. Since he contested in running – a tough sport – his participation age ranged most probably between 18-30 years of age, and so the most probable Olympiads he would have participated in are the ones that occurred in either 504 BC (19 years old), 500 BC (23 years old), 496 BC (27 years old) and 492 BC (31 years old). Alexander’s age clearly excludes any participation after the Greco-Persian wars, that is, after 478 BC. In 478 BC he was around 45 years old, an improper age for Olympian competitor. So, considering only Alexander’s age, we can easily reject the theories that make him “a non-Greek that was granted permission to participate in the Olympics AFTER the Greco-Persian wars as a reward for his assistance to the Greeks during the wars”.

Shield with Star of Vergina on it
What about the Greeks that questioned his participation right? The fact that probably no Macedonian before Alexander could have participated in the Olympics only due to the constant two centuries long warfare with various non-Greek tribes, made Alexander’s participation look odd and unparalleled. After all, the Olympics were one of these events that reminded and renewed the bond between the various Greek tribes and so it is more than obvious that some Greeks were surprised when they saw a participant from a region that never before gave another Olympic athlete. After all, as the Italian Indro Montanelli brilliantly states in his book “Storia dei Greci” (page 281) about the Macedonians: “a big part of the Greeks simply ignored even the existence of their northern most kingdom named Macedonia”. 
If a Macedonian in general wanted to prove himself as a Greek around 500 BC the only thing that he had to do was remind the other Greeks of the ALREADY EXISTING two-century old Hesiodic tradition in which Macedon was “brother” of Magnes and a Deucalionid by ancient descent. Only that was enough to guarantee him equal rights to those of the Magnetes and the right to participate in the Olympics.
So Alexander I had no need to invent a Greek genealogy in order to participate in the Olympics and this only strengthens the originality of his Argive
(Greek citizen of Argos)descent.
Before closing with the Royal House and passing on to the Macedonian population there’s one thing left to clarify. Many modern scholars have rejected the Argive descent of the Temenids and considered it “Royal House propaganda”. At this point I would like to point out what the eminent British scholar Andrew Robert Burn says about the large number of examples of Royal Houses with different origin than that of the tribes that they control. In his book “A Traveller´s History of Greece” written in Oxford in 1984, in the chapter “people, idioms and the coming of the Greeks” he states:
“The expansion of the Hellenes (as the descendants of the proto-Greeks used to refer to themselves) wasn’t always the result of direct conquests. Sometimes they were invited, AS THE GREEK LEGENDS NARRATE, by the local kings in order to help them against their enemies; For Thucydides, this was the mode that the “sons of Hellen” managed to expand from Thessaly. In the legends, the hero arrives alone or followed by a few faithful companions. This is of course a poetic convention. After liberating the territory from enemies or “monsters”, the hero takes for bride the king’s daughter, “the prefixed price for the job”, to use the phrase of a modern scholar. Sometimes the hero inherits the Kingdom. IT IS NOT IMPOSSIBLE THAT SIMILAR THINGS OCCURED IN REALITY, BECAUSE IN THE PREHISTORICAL AEGEAN (AND IN HISTORICAL TIMES IN SOME TERRITORIES WITH ARCHAIC CUSTOMS *like Macedonia, personal note*) PARENTAGE WAS DETERMINED AND THE PROPERTY INHERITED PROBABLY THROUGH THE FEMALE LINE. IN HOMER, MENELAUS (A MYCENAEAN, BROTHER OF THE POWERFUL MYCENAEAN KING AGAMEMNON) BECOMES KING OF SPARTA AFTER TAKING FOR BRIDE HELEN, THE DAUGHTER OF THE OLD KING TYNDAREUS, ALTHOUGH TYNDAREUS HAD LIVING SONS (AS HELEN NARRATES IN THE ILIAD), THE DIOSCURIDS (KASTOR AND POLYDEYKES)”.

Ruins of ancient Pella in Greece
This pattern of a “Hero” invited to fight the old king’s enemies fits perfectly with the Temenids, because immediately after Perdiccas’ I accession to the Macedonian throne we have the Macedonian expansion through warfare. Anyway, Herodotus provides us another example of a king belonging to a different Greek tribe from the one that he controls. In [V.72] he reminds us that the Spartan king Cleomenes was an Achaean ruling over Dorians:
” …but the priestess stood up from her seat before he had passed through the door, and said, “Lacedemonian stranger, go back and enter not into the temple, for it is not lawful for Dorians to pass in hither.” He said: “WOMAN, I AM NOT A DORIAN, BUT AN ACHAEAN”.”
Other examples of the genre are the Phtiotid Aeakid Royal house of the Molossians, the Corinthean Bakkhiad Royal house of the Lynkestians, the Pylean “Nestorid” descent of the Peisistratids and Alcmeonids in Athens and the more historical examples of Gelon from Gela and the Rhegian Agathocles becoming respectively successful tyrant and chief-general of the Syracusans in Sicily. In this frame there is nothing “suspicious” in a Doric-Argive family ruling over the Macedonians. After all, Thucydides, a more “standard” historian than Herodotus who rarely concords with the later, in this particular theme is in accord with him about the Argive descent of the Temenid kings of Macedonia (II,98).
The next component of the ancient Macedonian history is the general population. We’ve already seen that we must make a distinction between the “Eteomacedonians” (that is the original Macedonians of the Old Kingdom) and the “Macedonians” who the Temenids finished up ruling under the Persian kings – that is after the submission to the Persians the Temenid dominion expanded outside the Eteomacedonians and the Old Kingdom. Intermarriages with the neighbouring Royal houses took place in order to solidify the expanded dominion and there is no doubt that non-Greek populations were eventually assimilated into the Macedonian stock. This can explain the minority of non-Greek names found in Macedonia (less than 5% of all the attested names). But if we must speak on the “origin of the ancient Macedonians”, then the focal point are the “Eteomacedonians”, just like any research on the early Roman History must be limited to the original Latins of Latium. NGL Hammond underlines this distinction clearly in his book “The Macedonian State: Origins, Institutions and History” where in chapter VI in a discussion about the earliest Macedonian institutions he states: “at this point we must focus on the real Macedonians and not on the “Molossian” tribes of Upper Macedonia and the populations east of the river Axius that the Macedonians managed to subdue”.
So what does Herodotus’ testimony has to offer for these “Eteomacedonians”? In two different and independent passages he equates the Macedonians and the Dorians:
In [I.56] he states:
“for in the reign of Deucalion this race dwelt in Pthiotis, and in the time of Doros the son of Hellen in the land lying below Ossa and Olympus, which is called Histiaiotis; and when it was driven from Histiaiotis by the sons of Cadmos, it dwelt in Pindos and was called Makednian; and thence it moved afterwards to Dryopis, and from Dryopis it came finally to Peloponnesus, and began to be called Dorian.”
It is clear that in Herodotus’ opinion – a man descended from a Doric colony in Asia minor – the Dorians used to be called Makednians when they inhabited northern Pindus. In other words, the Dorians were Makednians that migrated southwards.
Later in [VIII.43] when he’s presenting the Peloponnesian contribution to the Greek fleet opposing the Persians he states:
“From Peloponnese the Lacedemonians furnishing sixteen ships, the Corinthians furnishing the same complement as at Artemision, the Sikyonians furnishing fifteen ships, the Epidaurians ten, the Troizenians five, the men of Hermion three, THESE ALL, except the Hermionians, BEING OF THE RACE CALLED DORIC AND/OR MAKEDNIAN and having made their last migration from Erineos and Pindos and the land of Dryopis.”
Again the Macedonians and the Dorians are being equalised in Herodotus’ opinion. What does this mean? Instead of equalising the two Greek tribes it would be better if we considered them as “brother” tribes originating from the same North-Western Greek stock that used to inhabit the Boion range in northern Pindus. Boion is a focal point for all the tribes belonging to the so-called Northern Greek group. The eminent German linguists Porzig & Risch based on the various isoglosses of the various Greek dialects have proven that Mycenaean Greek was already a south Greek dialect and wasn’t the precursor of all the historical Greek dialects, but only of the Attic-Ionic and the Arkado-Cypriot ones. Aeolic and North-Western Greek on the other hand form a northern Greek group, and both derived from a common “undifferentiated” precursor. So far we know that the Dorians and Macedonians originate from the Boion range, the Aeolophon Boetians took their name from this mountain, meanwhile the Aeolophon Perrhaebians’ ethnonym literally means “from the source of the Aias/Aous” (Πέρρας ΑἴFου) situated immediately west of the Boion range.

‘Yauna Takabara’,(Greeks with sun hats) the Persian name of the Macedonians.

Furthermore we have Hesiod’s Theogony account that the Macedonians were “brother” tribes with the Aelophon Magnetes (mythological sons of Zeus and Thyia and by the last Deucalionids, that is, descendants of Deucalion, the genarch of all Greeks). Some have questioned the Macedonians´ Hellenicity because of their “co-laterality” to the mythological Hellen – that is, Thyia was Hellen’s sister and so her children were not Hellenes. This argument – at the degree that we can argue over mythology – is definitely shallow because there are other Greek-speaking tribes that do not descent from Hellen directly, but do descent from Deucalion. In the myth Deucalion had three children: Hellen, Thyia and Pandora junior. From Hellen derived Dorus, Aeolus and Xouthus, and from Xouthus Ion and Achaean. From Thyia and Zeus originated the two brothers “Magnes and Macedon rejoicing in horses and dwelling in Pieria around Olympus”, while from Zeus and Pandora originated Graecus, the genarch of the Epeirotans and the other north-western Greeks except the Dorians. Since no historian ever rejected the Greekness of the Magnetes, and since the vast majority of historians accept the Greekness of the Epeirotans, it is logical to include the Macedonians also in the bulk of the Greek-speaking population. After all, independently of the Hesiodic myth, and based on historical conclusions, the vast majority of the modern NON-GREEK scholars like Hammond, Burn, Bengtson, Brixhe, Masson – to mention some of them – accept the Greekness of the Macedonians. Furthermore, there are some important common usances specifically between Macedonians and Magnetes that seem to enhance the Hesiodic Theogony. Both (and only the Macedonians and Magnetes) had the cult of Zeus Akraeus and the festival of the Heretideia (although the Magnetes had for a very long time ceased to have a king and hetairoi), and both of them and the Aenians had a dance simulating livestock theft that the Macedonians named “Karpea”, and the Magnetes and Aenians “Karpaea”, from the Greek verb “karpeuein”, meaning “to gain”.
Now lets to return to the Boion and the bulk of the northern Greeks. It was the Phrygian descent into the region at the beginning of the Early Iron Age or the end of the Late Bronze Age that prompted the so called “Great Aegean Migration” that we know better as the “Dorian Descent”. The Phrygians pushed out this northern-Greek bulk and caused it’s dispersion and fragmentation into smaller tribes. The Dorians and Epeans ended up in the Peloponnese, the Thessalians moved to “Pelasgian Argos” and renamed it Thessaly, the majority of the Epeirotans moved south of the Aous and the Macedonians, the Magnetes and the Perrhaebians ended up around mount Olympus in Pieria and Perrhaebia.
What caused the migration of the Magnetes south of the river Penius in historical Magnesia? Herodotus gives us the answer in [VII.20.2] “…nor that of the Mysians and Teucrians, before the Trojan war, who passed over into Europe by the Bosphorus and not only subdued all the Thracians, but came down also as far as the Ionian Sea and marched southwards to the river Peneios.”
He informs us that Teucrians (Trojans) and their allies (Thracians, Paeonians, Mysians, Luwians, etc) had undertaken a vast military operation in the Balkans that reached to the Ionian Sea and the river Penius. This is definitely the best known reason for the departure of the Magnetes from Pieria southwards, for the isolation of the Macedonians in mountainous Western Pieria and for the arrival of the Thracian Cicones in coastal Pieria. Do we have any proof that this operation indeed occurred? Of course! During the Late Helladic IIIB period (ca. 1250 BC) we have massive fortifications constructed in the Mycenaean centres of Gla, Orkhomenos, Athens, Mycenae and Tiryns, but not in Messenia and Laconia. What does this mean? It means that the feared enemy of the Mycenaeans at that time was coming from the North-north East and it wasn’t only a naval force, but a terrestrial one also since Orkhomenos, far from the Aegean coast, was fortified also in this period.
Lets return now to the Macedonians gathered in western Pieria. We have a Mycenaean Greek presence archaeologically documented in this area with the necropolis near the modern village of Agios Demetrios. Being a necropolis – that is, a cemetery – one can exclude immediately influence from the south since the burial modalities of all cultures tend to remain conservative and adhering to the proper tradition. As NGL Hammond has argued many times, ALL THE TOPONYMS AND HYDRONYMS IN WESTERN PIERIA ARE OF GREEK ETYMOLOGY. IF THE MACEDONIANS DID NOT SPEAK GREEK FROM THE BEGINNING, THEN THEIR EARLY HOMELAND SHOULD HAVE CONTAINED NON-GREEK NAMES. Pieria, Leibethron, Lebaea, Aison, Aigai, Aegidion, Pimpleia, Haliakmon, Balla, Phylake, Akasamenae are examples of some of these topyonyms and hydronyms, and all have a purely Greek etymology. A classical example is that of the Thracians, who although massively Hellenized in late antiquity, kept toponyms and hydronyms indicating their early non-Greek background. Cities ending in “-bria” (Thracian word for “city”), “-diza” (Thracian word for “walls”, that is, walled city), and “-para” (Thracian word for “village”) can be found till today, while Hadrianople’s Thracian name “Uscudama” had survived until the Roman Emperor Hadrian changed it in the 2nd AD century.

ANCIENT RUINS ARGOS ORESTIKON GREECE
Gathered in mountainous Pieria, from ca. 1200 BC until 700 BC when the Temenids arrived, the Macedonians practiced transhumant pastoralism between the southern part of the Emathian plain in the winter (another Greek word meaning “sandy place” and used many times by Homer in the form “emathoen” = sandy) and the Pierian highlands in the summer. During this period they came into strong contact with the Phrygians who were living in the central Macedonian plain and having their capital in Edessa, the town where later the Macedonians founded Aegai in modern Vergina. The name Edessa and the nearby river Ascordus are the only non-Greek toponyms in northern Pieria-South Emathia and are unquestionably of Phrygian origin (“Vedy” in Phrygian means “water”). The Phrygian presence in the area is archaeologically documented by their characteristic “Lausitz” culture that the Phrygians brought with them from the north.
Around 700 BC as we have seen, Perdikkas I becomes king and the Macedonian expansion begins. What does Herodotus have to say about the Macedonians living in Western Pieria and their contact with the Phrygians?
In [VII.127] he states that the northern limit of Macedonia was the union of the rivers Haliakmon and Ludias, north of which started Bottia:
“as far as the river Lydias and the Haliacmon, which form the boundary between the lands of Bottiaia and Macedonia, mingling their waters together in one and the same stream”.
Herodotus wrote his histories around 450 BC, and so Hammond is convinced that Herodotus has borrowed this quote from the Milesian geographer Hecataeus who wrote around 515 BC, a time when indeed – as we have seen above – Ludias was the northern limit of Macedonia.
In [7.131] he names the Pierian mountains the Macedonian mountain”, and that is in agreement with the fact that Western Pieria was the homeland of the Macedonians:
“…in the region of Pieria many days, for the road over the Macedonian mountain…”
In [VIII.137] He says that Perdikkas I found the Macedonians in Lebaea in Upper Macedonia.
“Now of this Alexander the seventh ancestor was that Perdikkas who first became despot of the Macedonians, and that in the manner which here follows: From Argos there fled to the Illyrians three brothers of the descendents of Temenos, Gauanes, Aëropos, and Perdiccas; and passing over from the Illyrians into the upper parts of Macedonia they came to the city of Lebaia”.
Where was Lebaea? Before presenting Hammond’s conclusions based on later epigraphy let’s try to find out for ourselves. Herodotus says in Upper Macedonia near Illyria, so one´s mind goes to the LATER Upper Macedonia which bordered the HISTORICAL Illyria. But Perdikkas was the first king, the one who started the expansion so it is impossible to find Macedonians in Upper Macedonia (which Greek Molossian tribes inhabited) near historical Illyria. 
Where was this Illyria and where was this “Upper Macedonia” in Pediccas’ times? Herodotus helps us find the second one, since in [VII.128] he makes reference to Xerxes’ army having passed from the pass of Petra in western mountainous Pieria “from the Macedonians who dwell in the highland”:
“because he was meaning to march by the upper road, through the land of the Macedonians who dwell in the highland, until he came to the Perraibians, passing by the city of Gonnos.”

The Star of Vergina the symbol of Greek Macedonia
So Perdikkas’ “Upper Macedonia” is nothing else but the Macedonian homeland in western Pieria. What about Illyria? When Perdikkas became king around 700 BC the central plain was still under Illyrian control. One must consider that the Illyrian expansion lasted from ca.1000 BC to 650 BC and was the basic reason that caused the Phrygian migration in Asia minor sometime around 900-800 BC. Professor Andronikos in Vergina (Aegai) has found three different and independent cemeteries: the oldest was Phrygian (Lausitz culture) dating from ca.1100 BC to 900 BC, the second one was Illyrian (Glasinac culture) dating from ca. 900 BC to 700 BC, and the last one was Macedonian, in which in historical times the inscriptions survived and the discovered graves have Greek names and patronymics dating from ca. 480 BC. If to all that we add Polyaenus’ testimony about an early Macedonian-Illyrian conflict around king Argaeus’ times (ca. 650 BC), then it becomes clear that Illyria in Herodotus’ [VIII.137] is nothing else but the Central Plain and it’s western highlands under Illyrian control. This “Illyria” is indeed bordering “Upper Macedonia” as we defined it from [VII.128], that is, Western Pieria.
So we can be pretty sure that Perdikkas had found the Macedonians grazing their stock in the highland of Pieria near the city of Lebaea. And finally, here is what Hammond has to say about Lebaea on page 5 of “The Macedonian State”:
“Where was Lebaea? An answer was provided recently by the discovery of an inscription which recorded the dedication of a liberated slave to “The autochthonous Mother of the Gods at Alebea, a village (attached) to Elimea”, a city of which we know the location. If Lebaea and Alebea are the same place, which is probable, we can put Lebaea in the western part of Pieria. This is consistent with our knowledge that the early home of the Macedonians was around Pieria and Olympus.”
It is more than obvious that Lebaea was a pre-Temenid settlement somewhere in the Pierian mountains. But where? In the archaeological site of Paleogratsiano in the southwestern slopes of the Pierian mountains, archaeologists have found an ancient settlement dating from the Early Iron Age which satisfies all the above pre-requirements and additionally explains the name Lebaea. Immediately west of the Pierian mountains today, the Haliakmon forms an artificial lake due to the presence of a dam. Immediately after the dam, the river enters Emathia and in the border between the modern provinces of Kozani and Emathia it forms a number of little natural lakes. It is more than probable that before the construction of the dam this pattern of small lakes created by the river was present in all its Pierian course. Now Lebaea in Greek literally means “water deposit”, hence both ancient and modern Greek word “Lebetas” meaning the same thing. All this indicates that the Macedonians spoke Greek long before the Temenids arrived and that is why all the Pierian toponyms and hydronyms are of Greek etymology. After all, the Temenids had nothing to do with the name of Lebaea as they had nothing to do with the Mycenaean findings near Agios Demetrios.

Returning to Herodotus, what has he to say about the relation of the Phrygians and the Macedonians? In [VII.73] he states:
“Now the Phrygians, as the Macedonians say, used to be called Brigians during the time that they were natives of Europe and dwelt with the Macedonians; but after they had changed into Asia, with their country they changed also their name and were called Phrygians”.
He reminds us that the Macedonians had lived nearby the Phrygians. This is definitely the period when the Phrygians were inhabiting the central Macedonian plain and the Macedonians the Pierian Highland. Furthermore, the fact that they had inhabited nearby helps us to verify the arrival of the Macedonians in Pieria. We know that the Phrygians had migrated to Asia Minor sometime between 900 and 800 BC due to Illyrian harassment. We also know that the Macedonians were heavily influenced by the Phrygians in both tradition, religion, and language. The eminent linguist Claude Brixhe (and an expert in the Phrygian language) in his model of “phonological osmosis” has argued that the Macedonian dialect is nothing else than a north-western Greek dialect heavily influenced phonologically by the Phrygians and that explains perfectly it’s “unorthodoxies” in respect to the other Greek dialects. The same tendencies of voicing and deaspiration of the standard Greek unvoiced aspirates are not only found in the Macedonian dialect, but also in some rare dialectic forms of the Dorian and Aeolic dialects (which descent from the same northern-Greek precursor as the Macedonian) and also in the Pamphylian Greek dialect in southern Anatolia where the Pamphylians were neighboring the Luwian speakers of Lycia and Cilicia. Even there the same unorthodoxies can be found (Aspendos and andropos instead of “standard” Greek Aspenthos and anthropos) and that means that what happened to the Macedonians is nothing more than what has happened in every Greek dialect spoken in the borders of the Greek-speaking world.
The fact that the Macedonians were heavily influenced in both culture and language by the Phrygians means that they had inhabited nearby for a very long time. The Phrygians stayed in Macedonia from ca 1150 BC to ca 850 BC and since an influence of that measure needs at least two centuries of neighbouring, this means that the Macedonians were in the Pierian mountains all the time that the Phrygians were in the plain. After all, it was the Phrygian descent in the first place around 1200 BC that prompted the whole “migrating” phenomenon that caused the dispersion of the Northern Greek tribes from the Boion range to the rest of the peninsula, bringing the Dorians in the Peloponnese and the Macedonians in Pieria. In this time frame the Mycenaean findings in Western Pieria dated around 1200 -1100 BC (that is, after the so called “Trojan Balkanian Operation” that Herodotus mentions, which caused the migration of the Magnetes south of the Penius and the massive fortifications of the south Greek Mycenaean centres around 1250 BC (LH IIIB)) must be attributed to the Macedonians, the “Highlanders” of Pieria.

After all that, the conclusion is that Herodotus is a valuable historical source when one knows what to accept and what to reject. Everything he said about the Macedonians, their kinship with the Dorians, their gathering in mountainous Pieria from where they started their expansion and their neighbouring with the Phrygians are things that linguists and archaeologists have confirmed directly or indirectly.
In a general discusion about Herodotus’ credibility in the introduction of the Italian edition of his “Histories” (the one translated by Fulvio Barberis and edited by Garzanti) , Luciano Canfora states : certainly like every mortal Herodotus wasn’t infallible , but when we must discuss about his ability to discriminate between true and false and his willingness to express the first , Herodotus speaks by himself:
In [III,124] he states : ” For Polycrates was the first of the Hellenes of whom we have any knowledge, who set his mind upon having command of the sea, excepting Minos the Cnossian (or Knossian) and any other who may have had command of the sea before his time. Of that which we call mortal race Polycrates was the first”.
And this is a proof that he can distinguish between myth (Minos the Cnossian ,a mythological figure) and reality (Polykrates of Samos , a person of the “mortal race” that is a historical person) although Thucydides -who is generally considered more standard and less “naif”- failed to make this distinction in [I.4].
About his willingness to speak the truth in [VII.139] he states: “And here I am compelled by necessity to declare an opinion which in the eyes of most men would seem to be invidious, but nevertheless I will not abstain from saying that which I see evidently to be the truth”.


THE NAME MACEDONIAN IN Hellenic (Greek) LANGUAGE
For the History however, Mythology says that Macedonia (Makedonia) was named after Makedon, who was the founder of the people of the Macedonians, who, in a sense, was the son of Zeus and Thyia, while in another son of the King of Arcadia Lycaona. Herodotus says that the Macedonians are descendants of the Thomenaeans - Iraklidon from Argos, who left the princes Gavani, Aero and Perdiccas, and settled in this northern region of Greece.

Also for the history, the names Makedonia and Macedonian originate from the Doric word "makos" (meaning length) and state that Makedonia (Macedonia) is the country with the tall, long humans.

Strabo the father of Geography has describe:
“There remain of Europe, first, Macedonia and the parts of Thrace that are contiguous to it and extend as far as Byzantium; secondly, Greece; and thirdly, the islands that are close by. Macedonia, of course, is a part of Greece, yet now, since I am following the nature and shape of the places geographically, I have decided to classify it apart from the rest of Greece and to join it with that part of Thrace which borders on it and extends as far as the mouth of the Euxine and the Propontis. Then, a little further on, Strabo mentions Cypsela and the Hebrus River, and also describes a sort of parallelogram in which the whole of Macedonia lies.




Πέμπτη, 30 Νοεμβρίου 2017

MEN IN TIME, ABOVE TIME AND AGAINST TIME

Priestess Savitri Devi (30 September 1905 – 22 October 1982) was Mrs Maximiani Portas, Greek-English origin and citizen of India.

Excerpt from the Book  “The Lightning and the Sun”

MEN IN TIME, ABOVE TIME AND AGAINST TIME  

All men, inasmuch as they are not liberated from the bondage of Time follow the downward path of history, whether they know it or not, and whether they like it or not.

Few indeed thoroughly like it, even at our epoch, — let alone in happier ages, when people read less and thought more. Few follow it unhesitatingly, without throwing, sometime or other, a sad glance towards the distant lost paradise into which they know, in their deeper consciousness, that they are never to enter; the paradise of Perfection in time — a thing so remote that the earliest people of whom we know remembered it only as a dream. Yet, they follow the fatal way. They obey their destiny.

That resigned submission to the terrible law of decay — that acceptation of the bondage of Time by creatures who dimly feel that they could be free from it, but who find it too hard to try to free themselves; who know before hand that they would never succeed, even if they did try, — is at the bottom of that incurable unhappiness of man, deplored again and again in the Greek tragedies, and long before these were written. Man is unhappy because he knows, because he feels — in general — that the world in which he lives and of which he is a part, is not what it should be, what it could be, what, in fact, it was at the dawn of Time, before decay set in and before violence became unavoidable. He cannot whole-heartedly accept that world as his — specially not accept the fact that it is going from bad to worse, — and be glad. However much he may try to be a “realist” and snatch from destiny whatever he can, when he can, still an invincible yearning for the better remains at the bottom of his heart. He cannot — in general — will the world as it is.

But few people — as rare as the liberated ones, for whom Time does not exist, and perhaps rarer, — can and do; and act up to that will. These are the most thorough, the most mercilessly effective agents of the Death-forces on earth: — supremely intelligent, and sometimes extraordinarily farsighted; always unscrupulous to the utmost; working without hesitation and without remorse in the sense of the downward process of history and, (whether they can see or not as far as that) for its logical conclusion: the annihilation of man and of all life.

Naturally, they do not always see as far as that. But when they do, still they do not care. Since the Law of: Time is what it is, and since the end must come, it is just as well that they should draw all the profit they possibly can from the process that is, anyhow, sooner or later, to bring about the end.

Since no one can re-create the primeaval lost Paradise — no one but the wheel of Time itself, after it has rolled its full course — then it is just as well that they, who can completely forget the distant vision, or who never had a glimpse of its dying glow; they, who can stifle in themselves the age-old yearning for Perfection, or rather, who never experienced it; it is just as well that they, I say, should squeeze out of the fleeing moment (whether minutes or years, it matters little) all the intense, immediate enjoyment they can, until the hour copses when they must die. It is just as well that they should leave their stamp upon the world — force generations to remember them, — until the hour comes for the world to die. So they feel. It makes little difference what suffering they might cause to men or other living creatures, by acting as they do. Both men and creatures are bound to suffer, anyhow. Just as well through them as through others, if that can forward the aims of these people.


The aims of these people — of the men within Time, par excellence, — are always selfish aims, even when, owing to their material magnitude and historical importance, they transcend immeasurably any one man’s life, as they actually do, sometimes. For selfishness, — the claim of the “part” to more place and to more meaning than is naturally allotted to it within the whole, — is the very root of disintegration, and therefore a characteristic inseparable from Time. One can practically say that, more a person is thoroughly, remorselessly selfish, more he or she lives “in Time.”

But, as we have said, that selfishness is manifested in many different ways. It can find expression in that mere lust for personal enjoyment, which characterises the shameless voluptuary; or in the miser’s insatiable greed for gold; or in the individual ambition of the seeker of honours and position; or in the family ambition of the man who is ready to sacrifice every interest in the world to the welfare and happiness of his wife and children. But it can also be brought out in the exaltation of a man’s tribe or country above all others, not because of its inherent worth in the natural hierarchy of Life, but just because it happens to be the tribe or country of that particular man. It can be, nay, and often is, brought out in the undue exaltation of all human beings, however debased, above all the rest of living creation, however healthy and beautiful — the passion which underlies the age-old tyranny of “man” over Nature; the “love of man” not in harmony with the Godordained duties and rights of each and every species (as of every race and of every individual) according to its place, but in a spirit of mere solidarity with one’s kith and kin, good or bad, worthy or unworthy, solely because they are one’s own. Men “in Time” only know what is “their own” and what is not, and they love themselves in whatever is theirs.


As there are men “in Time,” so there are, also, philosophies and religions — “ideologies” — “in Time”; false religions, all of them, for true religion can only be above time. Such doctrines are more and more numerous, more and more varied, and more and more popular as the world proceeds nearer to the end of every historical Cycle. There was an epoch when they did not exist; an epoch in which a man “in Time” was necessarily against all professed doctrines. To-day, nearly all interpretations of age-old, true religions, and nearly all the “isms” that have replaced religions, are of the type “in Time.” Their function within the scheme of things, at this stage of world-history, is just to deceive the well-meaning weaklings and fools — the hesitating people, who want an excuse, a justification for living “in” Time without the unpleasant feeling of a guilty conscience, and who cannot find one for themselves. These are only too glad to catch hold of a philosophy loudly professing to be unselfish, which allows them, nay, encourages them, to work under its cover for their selfish ends.

The ones who use a really unselfish doctrine, — an originally “timeless” philosophy, — for that purpose, lie all the more shamelessly to themselves and to others. And, by doing so, they help in reality to forward the great tendency of history: to hasten the decay which leads to the great End and, beyond — to the following new Beginning.


But the actual, typical men “within Time” need no justifying ideology in order to act. Their thoroughly selfish attitude is, in all its glaring shamelessness, far more beautiful than that growing tendency of the tiny men to slip down the path to perdition while hanging unto some “noble” ends such as “liberty, equality, fraternity” or “the rights of international proletariate,” or unto some misunderstood religion. Whatever they may tell the people whom they wish to deceive, — whom they have to deceive, in order to succeed, — the real men “in Time” never deceive themselves. They know what they truly want. And they know the way to get it. And they do not care what it costs to others or to themselves. And, specially, they do not, at the same time, want anything else, which is incompatible with their aims.
And so, — whether on an ordinary scale, like the consistent voluptuary or the single purposed miser, or on a nation-wide or continentwide scale, like those who stir millions and sacrifice millions of people, that they might impose their own will, — they act, in a way, as gods would act.
And, both in the grandeur of their achievements and in the beauty of the first-rate qualities of character which they put to the service of their purpose, a few of them really have something god-like — as, for instance, that greatest conqueror of all times, whose extraordinary career forms the subject-matter of a part of this book: Genghis-Khan. They possess the awful splendour of the great devastating forces of Nature; of the roaring sea, rolling out of its bed over the land; of a lava stream, burning its way through all obstacles; of the lightning, that men used to worship, when they still understood what is divine.


Naturally, this can be said only of those men whose action exceeds, by its very magnitude, the limits of what is “personal.” It is difficult to imagine any mere seeker of physical pleasure, or even of individual riches, attaining such a grim, god-like greatness. The importance of the men “in Time,” as such, depends upon the nature of their action itself and upon the breadth of the surroundings which it influences, no less if not more than upon the way in which, and the one-sided, cynically selfish purpose for which, they act.
And this is understandable, for reasons other than the sheer aesthetic impression which the true story of a mighty life can leave upon the reader or the bystander. It is the consequence of the fact that, like the great forces of Nature which we mentioned, real men “in Time” are blind powers, serving unknowingly the purpose of the Cosmos. The same is true, of course, of the petty seekers after small profits, in their limited sphere of activity. They too are blind powers of destruction. But small ones, at our scale at least. We experience the awe of the Divine in presence of the big ones only — as we do, for instance, before a storm upon the Ocean, while the sight of a pool of water disturbed by the wind leaves us indifferent.
When the ends, — however petty and personal in themselves, — are masterfully served through such action as stirs the whole world; when, in order to attain them, a man “in Time” displays, upon the international stage, superhuman qualities worthy of much higher ends, then, one feels one’s self in presence not of a man “in Time” but of the divine Destroyer — Mahakala;

Time Itself, — everlastingly rushing the Thing that seems to annihilation followed by new birth and then again by further decay and annihilation.

The man “in Time” can have any aim, with the exception of a disinterested one (which would at once raise him “above Time”). He himself is always like a blind force of destructive Nature. (That is the reason why so many thoroughly “bad” characters in literature and in the theatre are so attractive, in their forceful evil.) He has no ideology. Or rather, his ideology is himself, separated from the divine Whole — i.e., it is the disintegration of the Whole (of the universe) for the benefit of himself, and, ultimately, the destruction of himself also, although he does not know it or does not care. And that is the case in every instance. But under certain conditions, when his action takes, in human history, the permanent importance that a great geological cataclysm has in the history of the earth, then, as I said, the man “in Time” disappears from our sight, and in his, place — but still bearing his features, — appears, in all His dramatic majesty, Mahakala, the eternal Destroyer. It is Him Whom we adore in the great lightning individuals such as Genghis Khan — Him; not them. They are only the clay images inhabited by Him for a few brief years. And just as the clay image hides and suggests the invisible God or Goddess — Power everlasting — so does their selfishness both hide and reveal the impersonal purposefulness of Life; the destructive phase of the divine Play, in which already lies the promise of the new dawn to come. And just as volcanic convulsions or invading sea-tides prepare, in the course of centuries, a new growth, in a re-shaped physical universe, so do the great men “in Time” bring us nearer the liberating end and thereby prepare the way for the next glorious Beginning. “Scourges of God,” in a way, they are also blessings in disguise. Far better their frank, brutal destructiveness for selfish ends than the silly patch-work of the ordinary well-meaning people who try to “do good” in this fallen world, without having the courage to strike and burn and tear; who have only “constructive” schemes — all useless! For destruction and creation are for ever linked. That is why we adore the Lightning as well as the Sun, and are overwhelmed by a feeling of sacred awe at the thought of the grand-scale exterminators without ideologies, human likenesses of great Mahakala.


But there are also men “outside Time” or rather “above Time”; men who live, here and now, in eternity; who (directly at least) have no part to play in the downward rush of history towards disintegration and death, but who behold it from above — as one beholds, from a strong and safe bridge, the irresistible rush of a waterfall into the abyss — and who have repudiated the law of violence which is the law of Time.
Of such men, most live a very special life, away from the world; a life of which the whole inner discipline, spiritual, moral and physical, is systematically devised to keep them in constant union with the great Reality beyond Time: the Thing that is, as opposed to the Thing that seems. They are the real ascetics (in the etymological sense of the word: those who have “trained” themselves to live in eternity). Others — far rarer — live in eternity without a particular “training,” even while living, outwardly, the life of the world; while being husbands and wives, parents and educators of children, manual or intellectual labourers, citizens, soldiers, rulers, etc.
Of those who live “outside” or “above” Time, some are saviours.
Others just leave things and people go their way, feeling that they are not called to intervene in anyone’s destiny and knowing that, in the course of centuries, all souls that care to be saved will, anyhow, evolve towards the timeless life of the saints. The distinction between these two types of “liberated” people corresponds, in Buddhist terminology, to that between the Bodhisattvas and the Arhats. Both these are free beings, outside the law of birth and rebirth — the bondage of Time. But, while the Arhat remains completely aloof from the fallen world, the Bodhisattva is born over and over again, of his own free will, in order to help living creatures to work themselves out of the ocean of life within Time.
But the salvation which the men “above Time” offer the world is always that which consists in breaking the time-bondage. It is never that which would find its expression in collective life on earth in accordance with Golden Age ideals. It is the salvation of the individual soul, never that of organised society. For the men “above Time” know fully well that that cannot be saved before the beginning of a new Time-cycle — specially not by peaceful preaching or even edifying examples. And even when they do, to some extent, try to bring a certain amount of organisation into being among a restricted number of disciples, — in monastic communities, for instance, — they know that, however saintly it be, the community as such is bound to degenerate sooner or later. The Buddha foretold the corruption of his sangha “after five hundred years.”
It is true that some — though extremely few — men, of those whom we have characterised as “above Time,” have been (or have tried to be) reformers in the worldly sense, by non-violent means. But none of them were “saviours” of society, really speaking. The saviours in the worldly sense of the word — those who set out to perfect not merely men’s souls but men’s collective life and government, and international relations — are what we call men “against Time.” And they are necessarily violent, although not always physically so. They may be, — in fact, they should be, — personally free from the bondage of. Time, if they are to act with the maximum of foresight and efficiency. But they have to take into consideration the conditions of action “within Time” to live “in” Time, also, in a way. The others — the men “above Time” who appear to have been reformers — have not really tried to remould the world according to their understanding of eternal truth (otherwise, they would not have remained non-violent). What they did was to live in the world their own timeless philosophy. And to the extent that they occupied a position of importance — like that most remarkable of them all, Akhnaton, King of Egypt, who was in his days the most powerful man on earth — their lives could not but have a repercussion upon those of their contemporaries.
It might seem strange that the Founder of a State-religion — for the cult of the “Heat-and-Light-within-the-Disk” was that, undoubtedly — should not be counted among the “saviours” of the world, but rather among those extremely rare men “above Time” who have lived the life of this earth while stubbornly remaining foreign to this earth’s grim realities. But appearances are deceptful. And we shall see, further on, in examining the nature of the much misunderstood Cult of the Disk and the life of King Akhnaton, its Promoter, that this view is the right one.

The most distinctive trait of the men “outside” or “above” Time, as opposed to those who live “in” Time or “against” Time, is perhaps their consistent refusal to use violence even in order to forward the most righteous cause. Not that they are at all squeamish about violence, like the weaklings, neither  good nor bad, who compose ninety per cent of mankind at our epoch. They could not possibly disapprove of the warrior-like ideal of detached, selfless violence preached by Lord Krishna — the divine Preserver of the Universe, Himself — in the Bhagavad-Gita; for that ideal is in harmony with everlasting truth, which any man who has transcended Time is bound to acknowledge. Only they are not Kshattriyas by nature, whatever be their race, their social position, their inherited responsibilities; they are not men of action, by nature, let alone fighters. Their action, like that of the Sun, lies essentially in their personal radiation of power, beauty and goodness. What they do is, of course, the integral reflexion of what they are, nothing more; nothing different; nothing which is foreign to them, for they are fully conscious of their being. And if they have any substantial influence at all, it is, like that of the Sun, an influence from above and from afar, characterised by its absolute impartiality, its indiscriminate and impersonal goodness.

They do nothing to compell others — nothing, at least, beyond certain limits, even if they live in the world. They know they cannot force the evolution of things, nor suppress the part played by Time in the lives of those who are still submitted to its iron law. Again, like the Sun, they shine. If the seed is alive, it will ripen sooner or later, never mind when, Violence would only help to produce an artificial growth. And if the seed be dead? Let it be!
There are new seeds; new creations, for ever and ever. The people who live in eternity can wait.

We have said: those who remain “above Time” do not resort to violence. This does not mean that all men who abstain from violence are necessarily liberated souls, living “above Time.” First, an immense number of cowards are non-violent for fear of taking risks. And they are- anything but free from the bondage of Time. Then, that which one often takes for non-violence, — that which actually goes under that name, — is, in reality, but a subtler form of violence: pressure upon other people’s feelings, more oppressive and — when one knows, in each case, what feelings to appeal to, many a time more effective than pressure upon their bodies. Late Mahatma Gandhi’s much admired “non-violence” was of that type: moral violence; not: “Do this, or else I kill you!”, but: “Do this, or else I kill myself!” Knowing that you hold my life as indispensable. It may look “nobler.” In fact, it is just the same — apart from the difference in the technique of pressure. It is, rather, less “noble” because, precisely on account of that subtler technique, it leads people to, believe that it is not violence, and therefore contains an element of deceit, an inherent falsehood, from which ordinary violence is free.
Late Mahatma Gandhi was by no means what we have tried to define as a man “above time.” He was what we shall call a man “against Time,” aiming now — far too late or... a little too soon, — at the establishment of a tangible order of justice (Ram raj) on this earth. But, inasmuch as it lacks the frankness of brutal force, his so-called “non-violence” — moral violence — is characteristic of our epoch of dishonesty (however honest and sincere he might have been himself.) It is, perhaps, the first instance in history of a disguised form of violence applied, on a broad scale, in a struggle for a good purpose. Its popularity in India can partly be credited to the fact that it was, or seemed to be, the only practical weapon in the hands of totally disarmed and, to a great extent, naturally apathetic people. But it enjoyed abroad, also, a tremendous publicity, quite out of proportion with its real value (and late Mahatma Gandhi’s tremendous reputation of “holiness” is no less out of proportion with his real place among the great men of India). The foreigners who have done the most to popularise it are people typical of our degenerate age: people who recoil at the mere thought of any healthy and frank display of force, but who cannot even detect moral violence; men and women (especially women) of the Western Democracies, the most hypocritical half of the world. It appealed to them precisely to the extent that it was violence in disguise. Even English people (some of whom had lived in India; some of whom had, nay, occupied a high position within the ranks of British colonial officialdom) could not help admiring it. It was not that hated brutal force which other great men “against Time” had used in, the course of history (or were using at our epoch) to bring about an age of justice. Oh, no!
But it surely was not, either, the non-violence of the men “above Time” who, if they cared at all to take an occasional stand against the unavoidable fall of mankind, would either use no real pressure at all to enforce their good laws — and fail, from a worldly point of view, as King Akhnaton did, — or else, exert “against Time” any amount of violence that might be necessary, in the spirit of the God Who speaks, in the Bhagavad-Gita, to the Fighter for a just cause (provided the latter happens to be, like Arjuna, a Kshattriya, i.e., a warrior by race and by nature).

The men who remain “above Time” seem to be those who have the least influence of all upon the course of events in this world. And that too is to be expected in a world which is sinking deeper and deeper every day into the abyss. In the Age of Truth, and even in later ages pictured in the sacred books of India, the men “above Time” — the true Brahmins, in union with eternal Reality — were the natural and actual counsellors of kings; genuine spiritual authority then backed legitimate temporal power. But as the temporal order on earth became more and more unlike the ideal heavenly Order, kings were less and less inclined to act according to the commands of an increasingly rare timeless wisdom. And what is true of kings is, also, here, true of commoners. As a result, men “outside Time” or “above Time” enjoy less and less authority as the world proceeds towards the end of every Time-cycle. Even when, — like King Akhnaton — they themselves happen to be rulers endowed with absolute power, their lives do not — cannot — in what the Hindus call the “Kali Yuga,” leave upon the sands of time the trace which they normally should.
Moreover, sometimes, — and that, even if they be ascetics, apparently separated from the world, — men “above Time” can, like the Sun, with which we have constantly compared them, be destructive, indirectly. Their light, indiscriminately shed upon the righteous and the unrighteous, can have the most varied and unexpected effects amidst a humanity evolving from bad to worse. One can think of the destructiveness of King Akhnaton’s “Golden Age” attitude to international affairs, viewed from the Egyptian side. One can think also of the true religions, conceived by such men “above Time” as were not in possession of temporal power, and then distorted by clever people who lived, most of them, entirely “within Time,” and used by them in the service of the most selfish, the most destructive of all worldly ends. It is, naturally, “not the fault” of the men “above Time” — any more than it would be “the fault” of the Sun, if, in some land where the heat of the sun-rays is unbearable, a man were to tie his enemy to a pillar in a shadeless place and leave him to die there. Truly speaking, it is not “the fault” of the men “within Time” either. It is a consequence of the law of general decay, inseparable from life in time: as the world becomes less and less capable of penetrating their eternal meaning, even the best things are misunderstood, and, either hated and rejected or else put to some criminal use.

Exiles of the Golden Age in our Age of Gloom, the men “above Time” either live entirely within their own inner world, or else live and act in this one also, but as though it were still in its Golden Age. They either renounce this world or ignore it — or, better, forget it, as a man forgets the scars of sin and sickness upon a once beautiful face, which he still loves, in spite of all. They see the everlasting and unchangeable behind the downward rush of the stream of time; the Thing that is, behind the thing that seems.
Even when they live in the world of forms, colours and sounds as earnestly and intensely as King Akhnaton — that supreme artist — did, still those impressions take on, for them, a meaning entirely different from that which they retain in the consciousness of people submitted to the bondage of Time. Men “above Time” enjoy with detachment, as people who know they will never die. They also suffer with detachment, being constantly aware of their blissful real Self, which is beyond pleasure and pain.
And the fallen world can never understand them, i.e. know them, any more than they can understand the fall of man, in which they have no part, as others, who share it, can, and do. And yet, untiringly, — like the Sun, far away and omnipresent — they shed their light; that light which is, in our growing gloom, like a glimpse of all the past and future dawns.

But, as we have said, there are also people with a Golden Age outlook, — fully aware of what a splendid place this world could be, materially and otherwise, — who can, however, neither renounce life “as it is” nor ignore it; people who, in addition to that, are endowed with what the Hindus would call a “Kshattriya” nature: born fighters, for whom difficulties exist only to be overcome, and for whom the impossible has a strange fascination. These are the men “against Time,” — absolutely sincere, selfless idealists, believers in those eternal values that the fallen world has rejected, and ready, in order to reassert them on the material plane, to resort to any mea within their reach. As a consequence of the law of Time, those means are necessarily all the more drastic and all the more brutal as every historical Cycle draws nearer to its end. The last Man “against Time” is, in fact, no other than He Whose name, in Sanskrit Tradition, is Kalki, — the last Incarnation of the divine Sustainer of the universe and, at the same time, the Destroyer of the whole world; the Saviour Who will put an end to this present “yuga” in a formidable display of unparalleled violence, in order that a new creation may flourish in the innocence and splendour of a new “Age of Truth.”

Men “outside Time” or “above Time,” at the most saviours of souls, have, more often than not, disciples who are definitely men “against Time.” (Sometimes even men “in Time”; but we do not speak of these, for they are mere exploiters of religions or ideologies for selfish ends, not sincere disciples of saints.) The true disciples — and, in some rare instances, the Masters themselves — who are “against Time,” thorough organisers, unscrupulous propagandists and ruthless fighters, are the actual founders of most of, if not all, the great Churches of the world, even when the religions preached by those Churches are doctrines originally “above Time,” as they generally are. And this is unavoidable inasmuch as a Church is always or nearly always, not only itself a material organisation, but an organization which aims at regulating the lives of thousands, when not millions, of people in this world — in Time. Apparently, the one exception to that law is Buddhism, the only important international religion which has conquered over half a mighty continent without the help of men “against Time” and without the use of violence; the one in the name of which persecution of other faiths was never carried on but twice in the whole course of history, — and that, by men “in Time,” and for reasons decidedly political, not religious.
But then, we must remember that this creed is, more than any other, dominated by the yearning to escape the bondage of Time, and that it is, in fact, not intended at all for life in Time. A person who accepts its postulates cannot possibly think of a better world, except if it be “outside” or “above Time.” But, as a result of this, there is perhaps a more shocking disparity between the high ideals of the religion and the life of the faithful in Buddhist countries than anywhere else. The religions that have spread and maintained themselves partly through violence, have had, in spite of many shortcomings, and of less high moral standards, a greater practical influence upon the lives of their followers as a whole, strange as this may appear.
One does not always realise this clearly enough, when one criticizes the great active disciples for being inconsistent with “the spirit” of their contemplative masters. One does not realise that, without the ruthless passion of those men, the organisations that have, one must admit, kept to some extent “the spirit” alive, would just not exist, in, many places where they still flourish, and that many “spiritual treasures,” that one values so much, would be lost to the world. If one really values those “treasures,” one should not find fault with the men “against Time” or, more often than not, “in Time,” who recoiled from nothing so that they might be put, and kept, within man’s reach. Without the brutal methods of Charlemagne, the Saxonslayer, so obviously anything but “Christ-like,” the Germans would perhaps, to this day, have remained attached to their old gods; so would have the Norwegians, without the drastic sort of evangelisation imposed upon them by King Olaf Tryggvason. Without the equally sincere, equally fanatical, and even more brutal activities of many men “against” or “in” Time, in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, half Goa, and the whole of Mexico and Peru would probably not be, to-day, professing the Christian faith.

Christianity owes a lot to men “against Time” — and perhaps still more to men “in Time.” We, who are not Christians, may — and do, — deplore it. We are aware of the fact that many spiritual treasures other than those contained in the Gospels — the truths contained in the old European Paganisms, or long preserved in the solar cults of Central and Southern America; treasures of which, to-day, one knows much too little, — were lost to the world precisely through the impersonal zeal of religious-minded men, by nature “against Time” (or through the wanton destructiveness of men “in Time”) such as those we have mentioned. But we believe that, wherever such losses were suffered, there was something wrong not with the forgotten truth (which is eternal) but with the people who should have managed to stand for it against the new and hostile doctrine; we believe, in fact, that there were not enough men “against Time” among those people — not enough persons in whose Eyes the now lost teachings were, then, sufficiently alive to be made a basis for the organisation of human society against the growing current of decay; not enough who, in order to defend them on those grounds, were prepared to be as ruthless and as perseverant as the Christians were in order to destroy them.

The relation between the Master, permanently “above Time,” and the ardent realist “against Time” — builder and defender of all militant Churches — who happens to be his disciple, has never been so perfectly pictured as in the words addressed to the Christ by the grand Inquisitor, in Dostoyevsky’s famous episode of “The Karamazov brothers.” “Thou hast resisted the three temptations of the Devil” — refused the means to rule, offered to Thee by the! One who knows men and time, better than any other. “Thou hast refused to turn stones into bread” — to give the multitudes material goods; “Thou hast refused to throw Thyself from the height of the Temple” — to give the people astonishment and awe; “Thou hast refused to bow down to Me — the Master of lies; the Master of Time — to live “in Time,” to some extent at least. “As a result, the people have drifted away from Thy teaching and from Thyself, and Thou canst not save them. It is we” — we the unscrupulous, we, the violent, the men who stop at nothing to make the truth they love a reality in this world — “it is we, I say, who save them, in Thy stead, by doing all that which Thou hast refused to do and therefore by damning ourselves in Thine eyes. And we accept that damnation for the love of Thee — for Thy name to be praised.”
This is the substance of the Inquisitor’s discourse, if not its textual wording. And the militant champion of the organised creed tells the Christ: “Do not come back! — do not destroy the work that we are doing in this fallen world, for Thy glory!”
For no organisation can live “outside Time” — “above Time” — and hope to bring men back, one day, to the knowledge of the eternal, values.
That, all men “above Time” have realised. In order to establish, or even to try to establish, here and now, a better order, in accordance with Truth everlasting, one has to live, outwardly at least, like those who are still “in Time”; likes them, one has to be violent, merciless, destructive — but for different ends. Therein lies the tragedy of bringing into reality any dream of perfection. And the more perfect the dream — the further away from the conditions of success in this fallen world, — the more ruthless must necessarily be the methods of those who sincerely wish to impose it upon men, too late or... too early.

Knowing this, the real men “above Time” are the first ones to understand and to appreciate the whole hearted efforts of their disciples “against Time,” however “awful” these ‘night appear to ordinary people neither good nor bad. The Christ, in Dostoyevsky’s famous page, says nothing. What could he say? There is nothing to be said which the leader of the militant Church could understand. To the Inquisitor, the Christ will always remain a mystery. But the Christ understands the Inquisitor and values his love. Before leaving the prison-cell — and the world of Time — he kisses him.

As we have pointed out above, no man “outside Time” can enjoy any real influence upon human society unless he has such disciples, or unless he is himself prepared to become, also, a man “against Time.” For it is a fact that one can be both “above Time,” in one’s personal outlook, and “against Time” in one’s activity in the world. All the really great creative men “against Time” possess these two aspects: they are men of vision aware of timeless truths; but they are, also, men who have been stirred to the depth by the glaring contrast between the ideal world, built according to those truths, and the actual world in which they live; men who, after what they have seen and experienced, can neither remain any longer cut off from time, in their own inner paradise, nor act in life as though all were well, but who must devote their whole life and energy to the reshaping of tangible reality on the model of their vision of Truth. One such Man is the warrior-like Adolf Hitler — whose unparalleled greatness is yet unrecognised, because his follow lost a war instead of winning it — is the tragic and beautiful figure that dominates the history of the West in our own times.

I have compared men “in Time” to the Lightning, and men “outside Time” or “above Time” to the Sun. Using the same metaphorical language, one can say that men “against Time” partake both of the Sun and of the Lightning, inasmuch as they are truly inspired by Golden Age ideals, rooted in timeless Truth, and as, — precisely in order to be able to stand for such ideals on the material plane, in the Age of Gloom, against the current of Time — they are compelled to display all the practical qualities of the men “in Time”; inasmuch as the only difference between them and the latter lies not in their methods (which are the same, and cannot but be so) but in their selfless, impersonal ends.

They serve those ends with merciless realism but, to the extent they are “above Time” also, with the detachment preached to the warrior in the Bhagavad-Gita. In fact, the Teaching of the Bhagavad-Gita is nothing else but the philosophy of the perfect Man “against Time,” yogi in spirit, warrior in action; a Man like King Akhnaton, the Only-One of the Sun, free from the bondage of Time, and whose strength is cosmic Energy Itself, but... who uses that strength, on the material plane, in the service of his ideals, with all the remorseless logic of a Genghis Khan.

Alone Kalki — the last Man “against Time,” at the end of every historical Cycle; the last Saviour, Who is also the greatest Destroyer — impersonates that double ideal perfectly, and succeeds completely. 
It is He Who restores to the world its primeaval health, beauty and innocence, thus opening a new Time-cycle.

The other men “against Time” — before the very end of each humanity — succeed, and are recognised and exalted by millions, permanently, inasmuch as they, or their followers, abandon their spirit and work decidedly “in” Time, compromising with the forces of death; in other words, inasmuch as they have in them, — like the Prophet Mohamed, — more “lightning” than “sun.” Otherwise, they are defeated by the agents of the dark forces, broken in their might by the down-ward rush of history, which they are unable to stem. And such a fate awaits, always, until the very end of any Time-cycle, those who are too magnanimous, too trusting, too good; those who put too much confidence both in foreigners and in their sown people; those who do not “purge” their following often enough and thoroughly enough; who love their people too much to suspect ingratitude or actual treachery where it lies; who are not merciless enough, and sometimes spare their, fleeing enemies; in one word, those who, like Adolf Hitler, have, in their psychological make-up, too much “sun” and not enough “lightning.”

Be He, himself, but the last one in date of these, come back with superhuman might after apparent annihilation, or a new one altogether, “Kalki” will avenge them and the people who struggled at their side, for no visible result whatsoever, in their days. And then, He will make their apparently impossible dreams the living reality of the next great Beginning!
In every great Beginning, the men “above Time,” lonely ascetics, saviours of souls, or planners of an ideal order, too good for the fallen earth — Arhats, Boddhisatwas, or Rajrishis, to use the Sanskrit terminology, — meet the great Ones “against Time” on the material plane as on every other.
Then, in a world in which violence is no longer necessary, nay, no longer thinkable; in which freedom and order go hand in hand, things are, according to the very law of manifestation in Time, what both the men “above Time” who cared to give a thought to collective life, and the greatest men “against Time” wanted them to be. The City-of-the-Horizon-of-the-Disk as King Akhnaton dreamed it; the “Seat of Truth” which, even in his far-gone days, he failed to establish upon earth, and the world New Order which Adolf Hitler fought in vain to install in the midst of our present-day, worthless humanity, are, then one and the same living, tangible reality in time, — as long, at least, as unavoidable decay does not once more set in.

And thus, through the perfect, impersonal — mathematical — justice of the Cosmos, each different agent of universal Destiny has the success which is due to him as a man.
Those who work for the immediate result of their action, in a selfish spirit, obtain that result (and what a tremendous one, sometimes!) and play their part in the evolution of a world that must pass through degradation and death before it can experience the glory of a new birth and of a new youth. They bring that world nearer to its end.
On the other hand, those who have renounced the bondage of Time and, purposely, either do not act, or else act in the selfless spirit of the warrior in the Bhagavad-Gita, get the glorious result of their life’s thought and work at the beginning of the following Time-cycle.
And it may well be that the efforts of the men “against Time,” apparently wasted upon an ununderstanding and ungrateful world, actually do add to the beauty of every new Beginning, and that they even hasten its advent. For nothing is ever lost.

And as we have said, Destruction and Creation are inseparable. Even the most destructive men “in Time” are creative in their way. Men “above Time” are also destructive in their way — indirectly, as the former are creative.
Men “against Time” are actively, consciously, willingly both creative and destructive — like Lord Shiva Himself: the divine Principle behind all change; the Destroyer, Who again and again creates; and like Vishnu, the Preserver, Who, once at least in every Time-cycle, comes as Kalki, to destroy completely.

In them, the Cosmos is for ever seeking its Principle, against the irresistible Law of Time, which steadily draws it away from It, from the beginning to the end of every successive material manifestation in time.