We cited today an older post invoking J.G.Bennett’s scheme of evolution: it is a very controversial bit of ‘new age’ thinking, but Bennett was no ordinary new ager and cast his system in terms of n term systems, with special attention to three term systems, or triads. The marxist dialectic is really about two term systems (ambitious to be triads in considerable confusion). The question remains, did he get triads right (with the eminence grise Gurdjieff and his sufi sources in the background)?
This essay, evidently from an earlier version of The Dramatic Universe, actually connects the discussion to Kant and Hegel, and this doesn’t appear in later versions. Reflecting on this may tell us if he got it right. Bennett is correct on one point: this kind of thinking is very ancient, exists in disguised muddle in christian theory, evidently a garbled samkhya entering the roman empire, indeed the antiquity of triads is evident in the Indian religious tradition. But the way it is taken, the three ‘gunas’, sattwas, rajas, tamas, is clearly itself a garbled version.
So what is the truth of the matter? and how can we extricate ourselves from the nearly hopeless confusion of the subject?