Apollonian and Dionysian (Part 3 of 3)

Apollo, god of light, moderation, dream, vision, purpose

Dionysus, god of wine, wild abandon, release from fabricated and plastic ideals

Light cannot be without dark

Creation cannot exist without destruction

Love lacks depth if there is no hate

Fruits of peace grow rotten without war

Man cannot create lasting purposes if he fails to confront purposelessness

If life truly has no purpose then one should surrender and kneel before Dionysus

We must not build visions that attempt to degrade or snuff out Dionysian truths

Man must first embrace and explore the depths of nature both animate and inanimate

The human being must develop a finely tuned and objective observation of his uncaring God

Only upon our experience and understanding of Dionysus can we begin to approach Apollo

Modern man holds on to crude Apollonian visions despite his increasing knowledge of the Dionysian

The human being has forced himself into a mediocre state or a type of purgatory

He is unable to fully explore and embrace the depths of Dionysus because his comic Apollonian visions suppress or forbid him from doing so

Our stunted almost retarded Apollonian visions must be completely destroyed

Apollonian visions, light, purpose, meaning, motivation, employment of both energy and moderation, can only be recreated from a genuine and deeply felt understanding of the Dionysian

We must face and embrace the Abyss to pull ourselves out and into the light


9 thoughts on “Apollonian and Dionysian (Part 3 of 3)

  1. Hegelian Dialectics are not extinct after all!

    I was very much looking forward to this final installment, and I must say, it does not disappoint. This is some dense stuff, but also very true. I think that if the human being does not consciously confront the Dionysian aspects and forces of existence than they hold sway nonetheless in perverted and horrific forms–such as in the use of nuclear weapons, or in an efficient, excessively rational social/economic/political order that masks and “rationalizes” the collective spiritual holocaust (or destruction) of its human units. It’s one of those “self-fulfilling prophecies”–if you fear and flee the Dionysian you end up being destroyed by it anyway, whereas if you had just faced and embraced it you could have incorporated it into a more balanced and fruitful existence.

    One of my most treasured experiences is to walk out at midnight in the middle of a still uncivilized plot of nature/Earth, and to gaze up into the black abyss and blizzard of stars unhindered by city lights and to affirm, revel in and dance with the the wild chaos of it, knowing that there is no one or nothing there but the utterly indifferent forces of Cosmic Nature. In fact, I remember once taking my beloved younger brother to Halfmoon Bay on the coast of Northern California to show him this abyss and run into the darkness with utter abandon, nothing but the violent sounds of the waves crashing in the black night to accompany our youthful laughter.

    For many people this vision and experience is something too terrifying to confront–for some reason rather than liberating them it imprisons them, and they therefore spend their entire lives fleeing from it into the numerous little padded cells conventional society so conveniently supplies so as to help them hush away the “bogey man” of the inexplicable, indifferent Abyss, the most infamous being the ushering in of that Big Daddy in the Sky who made it all happen and is there to “take care” of the inmates.

    Perhaps it would have been better–ultimately more freeing and fruitful–to just have faced the dark truth in all its terrifying beauty. For this in no way precludes also embracing and reaping the harvest of the Light–on the contrary, it is an enhancing prerequisite of this.

  2. LOL…I wasn’t sure where this was going…but I am honored you mentioned Hegelian Dialetics. Indeed, I read Hegel in undegraduate but I am not certain I understood or retained what I read. I am sure my simple post is merely a perversion and crude cliff note of one of his many profound and more developed thoughts. I will look him up again and re-read. Unfortunately…most of what we think about today…given our mediocre state of being…has already been thought about before and more than likely in greater depth and level of understanding.

    I also remember going to a specific place with my older brother. In our youth, we lived near a nature preserve. We would go up to the nature preserve on clear night. To our back was the preserve…dark…moonlight highlighing the fog rolling over the dark forested mountains. We could often hear coyotes high pitched voices crackleing in the air. Up above we could see the Milky Way. And down below in front of us we could see civilization…San Jose, San Francisco, the thousands of car lights running along the 280 freeway like a bunch of illumniated ants. We used to absorb these three visions…reflect on what our life was like during the day where the lights shine at night…and think…is this the best we can do?

    The Apollo loyal Greeks faced the Dionysian and gave us the Tragic Drama…we try to face Dionysus and what does it give us? It gives us comic relief from our ridiculous crude retarded Apollonian visions…and even our outlet to Dionisian pleasure is crude like that of the barbarians (Post 1, Part 1). This truly is a Tragic Comedy.

    • Well put. What a coincidence that we both hail from NoCal. I guess in some ways that also makes you a brother of mine, figuratively speaking. 🙂

  3. This life is most cyclical and if you try and maintain one set course you will fall, because that’s just not the way things work. You can’t ignore one half of your self your entire life, it’s not healthy. We are good and we are evil. We must accept the evil so that you can move on with the good. Anyway, thanks for checking out my blog and for your posts here on your blog as well.

  4. An intriguing summon to reason. The idea of necessary opposites has always been a point of contemplation in my philosophical world view (if I truly have established one yet). Your approach seems almost cynically prophetic against the modern world. A captivating read for sure

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