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8 Primary Forces

1 Ananke – impersonal cosmic necessitystands behind and above the will of both humans and even the gods. Related idea Inevitability.

2 Moira – fate as played out in one’s individual identity.

3 Arete – personal heroic excellence: the perfect living out of one’s destiny by “doing what can be done by only myself and no other.” 

4 Related Arete is agon, contest, struggle: not against others (people or institutions, etc.), but against the standard of one’s own past performance. (1 TO 4 SOURCE: Professor Francis J. Ambrosio PHILOSOPHY, RELIGION, and the MEANING OF LIFE The Great Courses–Lecture 3 The Heroic Age: The Greek mytho-poetic tradition.)

5 WATER & the FEMININE — Thales is remembered as the first pre-Socratic scientist primarily for his cosmology based on water as the essence of all matter, with Earth a flat disk floating on a vast sea. 

I include water as a primary force, for it is essential for life. 

Then, in Tao, water represents the soft and yielding power of the Taoprimary force. Water is the most yin (feminine and motherly) in character of the five elements. Water’s motion is downward and inward, and its energy is stillness and conserving. But water is also the wearing agent. Water exemplifies the Taoist body (expressed especially in Tai Chi), that overcomes the hard body and triumphs over the rigid body (expressed especially in the Fascist body and body building). [ The Tao of Water by Rod Giblett ]

I link Apollo with water—god of ideal balance and order. The Greek God of the sun, light, music, truth, healing, poetry, and prophesy, known as the ideal of youth and athleticism, Apollo is the son of the Zeus and Leto. All types of form or structure are Apollonian, thus, sculpture is the most Apollonian of the arts, since it relies entirely on form for its effect. [ ]

6 Zeus is one of my choices of my 8 primary forces. Zeus is the Pater Familias, the father figure, loving and caring progenitor. Also at times punishing, but nonetheless, the guide and ruler who is hopefully, at last, wise in his punishments. What can we do? We’ve all got fathers, the good ones and the troublesome ones. 

7 FIRE a primary force: Heraclitus, the Greek philosopher, is remembered for his cosmology, in which fire forms the basic material principle of a universe. 

I conjoin Dionysus with fire. He is God of the vine, grape-harvest, wine-making, wine, fertility, ritual madness, religious ecstasy, theatre. Drunkenness and madness are Dionysian and fire-like.  All forms of enthusiasm and ecstasy are Dionysian.       Chinese Taoists say the attributes of fire are considered to be dynamism, strength, and persistence. But fire is also connected to restlessness. The fire element provides warmth, enthusiasm, and creativity; however, an excess of it can bring aggression, impatience, and impulsive behavior.  Of the Five Taoist Elements—wood, fire, earth, metal, and water—the Wood Element and the Fire Element pertain to Yang.

All the forrest fires burning got me thinking. Here is the result.

Nuclear fission transforms mass-matter at the atomic level into the sudden and tremendous energy-velocity of an atomic bomb explosion.  Fire, on the other hand, transforms gross and hulking mass-matter into the slow and progressive energy-velocity of light, heat, smokey vapor, and the powdery residue, ash, left after burning. In both nuclear fission and fire, matter undergoes its impermanence and entropy.


“In Buddhist symbolism, the lotus represents purity of the body, speech and mind, as if floating above the murky waters of material attachment and physical desire. According to legend, Gautama Buddha’s first steps made lotus flowers appear everywhere he stepped.” [ Sacred Lotus in Religious Arts / Wikipedia ] Could we not say that this is us–arising out of the primordial slim, our feet still stuck in clay, but our heads, our glorious heads, golden–at least some of the time?


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