Darwiniana

History, Evolution, and The Darwin Debate

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Complexity of human evolutionary psychology

April 30th, 2009 · No Comments

I promised another post on J.G.Bennett, in the previous post, Matter, life consciousness, but maybe that was enough. Dealing with Bennett is impossible at this point, as he carries too much baggage to be believable in the current culture.
But modern civilization is lacking a decent brand of ‘spiritual psychology’, which should rebranded ‘evolutionary psychology’, and flounders between Christian theology, where such a psychology is non-existent and the realm of scientism, where such a thing is also absent, and where an alarming set of delusions has taken root, with the fanatic imprimatur of science.

Bennett made a valiant attempt to correct that, but the result in his book The Dramatic Universe attempts too much, and ends up in a speculative mishmash. That’s a pity, because if you read his book almost archaeologically, throwing out all the junk, you find a core of ancient Samkhya, and a few basic structures that might be extracted and put on a reasonable basis, as an insight into spiritual pschology issues. That core revolves around the ancient Samkhya, whose understanding has been lost, but which suddenly springs to life again in Bennett.

Unfortunately you can’t discuss such things either with scientific audiences, or, sadly, even New Age audiences. There is a yahoo group devoted to Bennett: the mental mush that is visible there is a severe warning against bringing such an author into public discussion, like sellling alcohol to Indians.
But there is no reason why anyone who can read betweent the lines, discipline himself with Kantian critiques, might not pursue Bennett’s tome The Dramatic Universe to get a glimpse of how a real spiritual psychology might be constructed (but such a thing is still absent in that book!) for modern society.
Short of that, a study of Kant, maybe a reading of Schopenhauer, might help (Bennett quietly uses a Schopenhauer idea of ‘will’ to interpret Samkhya, a brilliant insight) might at least give a warning that the current psychologies in fashion are not adequate in any way.
In any case, human psychology is very complicated and could never have evolved by a Darwinian mechanism, as Wallace finally realized, tossing in the towel on ‘Darwinism’ (Wallaceism) and moving on to something else.
The entire Darwin succession ought to do likewise. There is no way trying to impose Darwin on world civilization can succeed, so why inflict this failed obsession?

Tags: New Age

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