‘Dualism’

‘Dualism is the idea that the universe is divided into two parts, which go by the names of matter and spirit, God and creation, human and nature or, most fundamentally, self and other. These two parts are by no means symmetrical: self is more important, other less. In religion, soul is self, body is other. The soul is important, while the flesh is at best irrelevant and at worst an impediment to the life of the spirit. Outside religion, the same dualism, following Descartes, manifests as mind = self, body = other. Either way, we identify with our minds and not our bodies, not other life forms, not the world at large. … The logical conclusion of dualism—that Other is important only to the extent it affects Self—is a hidden abscess constantly leaking poison into the body of our civilization. It is a universal acid that erodes away the core of any system of morals, ethics, and responsibility, which readily succumb to a succession of pragmatic “Why should I’s?” ‘–charles eisenstein, the ascent of humanity

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