Friday, November 17, 2006

About Secularism

I believe there's been some confusion about the Great Seal and its significance. Some people think "seclorum" means "secular" as in "new secular order", which is wrong. "Seclorum" means "of the ages" or thereabouts.

A theologian might say "that's what I meant: temporal, i.e. fallen from God's grace" presuming God has a hate feeling for Time or vice versa. But in my judgment that's wrong too.

I see it more as a Tower of Babel relationship: as you get higher in your Pyramid, you get greater overview, sure, but you're also more alone in your angle on things. As we Quakers say, communing with God is not about getting everyone else to think the way you do. You individualize or individuate as the Jungians put it. Don't expect to sound just like everyone else when you do this.

So my translation of "secular" is more like "friendly to individuals" which might mean "characters" i.e. these one-of-a-kind, unique specimens. By definition, we're not all on the same page.

But that hatred of "different" is refreshingly absent, and that's what I'm getting at. The Great Seal is a promise, of acceptance, of many religions, many creeds and philosophies, many ethnicities. The Statue of Liberty is in keeping with this message.

You the Individual have this special privilege of ascending this Pyramid to achieve greater overview. We enshrine that viewpoint as a Presidency, in our temporal model of intelligent government.

But it's really each of us with this power to internalize a virtual president, as long as we don't expect to become tyrants at the top (as if that'd make any sense to anyone).

:: the great seal ::