BETWEEN MAHAVIRA AND EMINESCU
GANDHIAN JAINISM IN ROMANIA
Meeting Acharya Mahapragya, listening to His Words, reading his books, and especially understanding, all the way through, what happens with one’s mind and actual Ahimsa path of transformation of heart and thus of mankind itself were among life term achievements. Post-Gandhian career of non-violence appeared as a global re-foundation of urgent ahimsa practice, from a non-violent life style to economics – e.g. hunger and poverty as sources of violence -, and spirituality in the light of Ahimsa Prashikshan. Instead of formal declarations we shared, tens and thousands of us, an intimate, almost silent consciousness change helped by most qualified trainers, under the guidance of Acharya Mahapragya and Uvacharya Mahashraman.
As a Romanian, I tried to spread the teachings of Rajsamand. I wrote afterwards a micro-novel – The Orissa Woman. Jain Poem – and I did a research on Ahimsa in Romanian literature from the ancient ballad Mioritsa/The Little Lamb/Memna (in Hindi) to the new Romanian Heysichasm, rereading in ahimsa-key poets like Mihai Eminescu, Lucian Blaga, Vasile Voiculescu. Before Rajsamand I lectured, at Delhi University, on Mircea Eliade’s Centenary in the World, mentioning that he has introduced ahimsa concept in Romania and commented Mahatma Gandhi’s non-violent revolution.
Mihai Eminescu (1850-1889) rewrote in Romanian on his own the beginning of the world from a sparkling point, as in Nasadya Sukta. Even a violent birth of cosmos has to be challenged. I wish Eminescu were in Rajsamand and see the tenth Terapanth Acharya, Mahapragya as a confirmation of his holy visions.
Climbing the Hill with thought to Tirthankaras and Terapanths, some of us got an increased feeling of Christmas on 25th December, few days after Id. Dr. Gandhi made clear once more our growth through Rajsamand encounter, a landarmak in our way to better humanity. Rudi sent here his Introduction to Jainism. Mezaki found similarities between Shinto and Dacian Zalmoxe. Gabriela spoke of enthusiasm in Rajsamand. Thomas reformulated his interfaith statement.
Vinod wrote me a letter just in Rajsamand. And I received in Bucharest from the editors – P.V. Rajagopal and S. Jeyapragasam – Ahimsa NONVIOLENCE -, International Gandhian Institute for Nonviolence and Peace, Madurai, May-June 2007, including articles “Economics of Nonviolence and Peace” by Acharya Mahapragyaji, and “The Nonviolent Revolution – the Italian who embraced Gandhi’s Satyagraha to oppose Fascism and War-II” by Rocco Altieri.
“The search for spiritual salvation did not require Gandhi to retire to a cave as a hermit, for he carries the cave with him” (A. Capitini )
Romanian priest and scholar Constantin Galeriu speaks on Mahatma Gandhi as the only leader of revolutions who discovered the Saviour, through Sermon on the Mountain preaching to love one's enemies. He proved to his enemies that he loved them, even dying as a martyr. In his own words: “I think only evil should be hated not evil-doers even when I could be the victim”; “Not to admit and to detest your enemies’ mistakes should never rule out compassion”,
and even love for them”.
The same spirit was shared recently in Romania by the author of The man, his people and the empire: ‘What is freedom?’ probed one student after Rajmohan Gandhi’s address at a university in Baia Mare, a northern Romanian city of 130,000 that was once a major mining centre. Prof Gandhi replied that ‘if the state tells me what to do, I say I will resist. But if my conscience asks me not to do something, I want to obey it. Then I find I have inner freedom.’
For them, and his university audience, Gandhi highlighted four key points;
‘If you’re planning a strategy for a community or country, leave absolutely no-one out;
‘Have the courage to speak the truth to your own side;
‘Think a lot but also leave room for inspiration;
‘If you find hatred around you, fight it. If people are hating each other, reconcile them. If someone is hating you, forgive him.’ (Rob Lancaster, “Romania: Reaching out to young leaders” 22/04/2010).
On a blog on internetnet, Ion Burhan sees in Gandhi's satyagraha a way to make conscious some “social sins” of Romanian society such as: richness without work, pleasure without conscience, knowledge without character, gain without morals; science without humanism, religion without personal sacrifice, politics without principles. An article by Satish Kumar on Jain religion, translated into Romanian, keeps in original the supplementary readings as for a global communion: Padmanabha Jaini, Jaina Path of Purification, Jawahar Nagar, Delhi, India: Motilal Banarsidas, 1979. / Acharya Mahaprajna, Anekanta: The Third EyeLadnun, Rajasthan, India: Jain Vishva Bhavati, 2002. Email: books@JVBI.org. / Umasvati, That Which Is: Tattvartha Sutra, translated by Nathmal Tatia, San Francisco and London: Harper Collins, 1994. / Pratapaditya Pal, The Peaceful Liberators: Jain Art from India (1995). New York and London: co-published by Los Angeles County Museum of Art and Thames and Hudson. / Jan Van Alphen, Steps to Liberation: 2,500 Years of Jain Art and Religion (2000). Antwerp, Belgium: Etnografisch Museum.
On the site of Biblitheca publishing house is announced (May 2011) the last book issued in Romanian translation: Introducere in Jainism by Rudi Jansma and Sneh Rani Jain. Ahimsa - “the heart of Jainism” -, Gandhi – modern apostle of Jainism -, Karma are among key words of the presentation for general public.
A letter sent to Romanian Parliament by Cristina María Speluzzi from Buenos Aires República Argentina is opened by a quotation from Gandhi:
Honorable Members of the Romanian Parliament,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
“The greatness and the MORAL progress of a nation can be judged by the way the animals are treated ” (M. Gandhi)
The dark specter of a death sentence for strays in Romania is again of major concern for people from all over the world…
Again, poor innocent animals are about to be legally massacred by the tens of thousands…
We found out that The Romanian Parliament’s Committee for Public Administration Territorial Planning and Ecological Balance intends to make a new law regarding the management of strays….and they want :
- the dogs captures by the dog catchers will be PTS after 14 or maximum 60 days ( those considered dogs for fights, aggressive breeds will be PTS after 48h or 10 days ; those sick will be PTS immediately )
- sick animals will not be given for adoption.
- those who feed or take care of strays will be fined
- the minimum conditions for the captures, living quarters, transport, care ( food and shelter ) WILL BE ELIMINATED FROM the new law
- the clear description of how the euthanasia will be done and what substances are to be used WILL BE ELIMINATED FROM the new law…it will be replaced with ” the euthanasia will be done by a specialist “.
- the non profit organizations for animal protection WILL HAVE NO RIGHT to complain about the living conditions of dogs in municipal shelters. the control will be done only by the Sanitary-veterinary Authority.
- the non profit organizations for animal protection WILL HAVE NO RIGHT to capture, take care or spat/neuter strays.
In his book The Gandhian Mode of Becoming, Gujarat Vidyapith, Ahmedabad, 1998, Dr. Catalin Mamali adds to the “simple list” of comparison terms - Socrates, Jesus, Buddha,
Confucius, Martin Luther, Thoreau, Ruskin, Tolstoy, Steiner, Marx, Tagore, Freud, Mao,
Lenin, Savarkar, Martin Luther King Jr., and Mother Teresa - one more
frame of reference: Niccolo Machiavelli. A special feature for a book on Gandhi published in India may be also the large number of Romanian authors in bibliography: Badina O, Blaga L, Botez M, Brucan S, Constante L, Draghicescu M, Eliade M, Gusti D, Herseni T, Ierunca V, Istrati P, Mamali C, Neculau A, Preda M, Zapan G.
“As a thinker and practioner of politics Machiavelli had a profound influence on European
political life. Seeking power through any means was the major principle of his philosophy.
As against this Gandhi preached and practiced ethical principles of purity of means for
attaining his objectives. One can hardly imagine two completely opposite view points and
their paths of life. (Govindbhai Raval, Vice Chancellor, in “Foreword”)
“Mamali’s book has one organizing axis a comparison of Gandhi with Machiavelli, for
understanding both of them better, as each other’s contrast, dialectionally – not to end up
telling the reader whom he should follow. Interestingly, they were both fighting for freedom
of their lands. But to Machiavelli such giant tasks accrued to the Prince. To Gandhi the
liberation could only be done by those who should be liberated; the people, not the way
Machiavelli (and the Marxist tradition) saw them, as “masses,” as superficial admirers of
success: hence to be led by feeding them with successes.” (Johan Galtung in “Introduction”).
In the end the author makes a pool - each of the 140 statements can be given grades between 1 and 5 according to the readers’ degree of agreement or disagreement to the respective position. Here are some of satyagraha, ahimsa, but also aparigraha statements.
1. It is impossible to detach, to separate the ends from the means.
6. Any economy ignoring moral values is ultimately wicked and artificial.
8. The individual entrusted with a public mission should by no means accept valuable
20. Any person willing to act in support of social welfare should never depend on public
21. Only when a person is able to look at his/her own errors through a magnifying glass
and at the others’ through a minimizing one, is he/she capable to correctly evaluate
his/her and the others’ mistakes.
42. Centralization as a system is improper for the non-violent functioning, and organization
of the society. It is hard to achieve a non-violent society within centralized systems.
47. Most of the people would rather forget their own father’s death than the loss of their
50. Not to admit and to detest your enemies’ mistakes should never rule out compassion
and even love for them.
The means should be in harmony with the purpose.
67. It is altogether difficult for a person living in dire poverty to achieve his moral
development. Those who accomplish it in such strained circumstances are people of
73. Bad means cannot help attain good ends.
90. In my opinion any person who eats the fruits of the earth without sharing them with the
others and who is of no use to the others is a thief.
96. Non-violence is indispensable to genuine economic development.
98. I think only evil should be hated not evil-doers even when I could be the victim.
99. In my opinion a person should never use friendship to gain favours.
112. I think that the most efficient means to have justice done is to do justice to my own
114. When many people live in dire poverty, it is of utmost importance to cultivate in all of
us the mental attitude of not boasting objects and appliances which are denied to
millions of people, and, consequently, to reorganize our lives in keeping with this
mentality as fast as possible.
120. I think that each and every person should give up the desires to possession of as many
things as possible.
124. Individuals should primarily use goods produced by indigenous economy.
INDOEMINESCOLOGY (MIHAI EMINESCU AND INDIA)
Public Address to the President of India, H.E. Shanker Dayal Sharma, at ceremony of Receiving Honorary Doctorate, Bucharest University
Your Excellency Mr. President of India, Sharmaji,
Your gracious meeting offered to Romanian specialists in Indian studies, mainly from Bucharest, here, it's a high honor, a stimulation and also a consolation. For it's a tragic issue of Stalinist-Communist dictatorship that best thinkers, Indologists included, were jailed. But riks and slokas from Vedas and Upanishads were still communicated by Morse alphabet.
We feel getting, at last, a free way to knowledge of Indian spirit and culture. Perhaps the moksha/salvation was the most appreciated quality of Indian spirit, together with Christian, Indian and universal dharma and shanti.
Mihai Eminescu, Romanian national poet, declared himself a Buddhist as an empowered Christian. During more than 15 years I had talks and letters about Mihai Eminescu, mainly in and from India, but also other continents; they make some personal and Indo-eminescological history in an epistolar novel I had honor to dedicate to your excellency, Mr. President of India, Dr. Sharma ji.
Kind of field researcher, I taught Romanian, between 1977-1984, at University of Delhi, while Prof. dr. Prabhu Dayal Vidyasagar was teaching Hindi at Bucharest University.
My mother has just died before and so India became my mother – now it was no problem how good India was to me, but how good was I to her.
I am grateful to legions of people in India, from great writers and professors like Amrita Pritam, Ageya, Nagendra, R.C. Mehrotra, Gurbakhsh Singh – former vicechancellors of Delhi University – to my colleagues and students in the university.
Surely the exchange of teachers between universities is a must.
Suppose India and Romania would have their cultural centers in Delhi and in Bucharest respectively, smaller and in a way more cultural cities like Iaşi, Cluj, Timişoara, Râmnicu-Vâlcea, for Romania, and Bhopal, Bhubaneshwar, Chandigarh, Bangalore, Trivandrum for India may be taken in consideration.
Romanian-Indian Cultural Society, started recently, in 1993, beyond university and formal scientific research on Indology, is trying to gather interested people in different topics of Indian culture. Many young and gifted persons are eager to study Indian arts, dance and music, to be on scholarship in their dreamland.
We can only slightly open a door toward an endless realm.
Finally, I will dare to evoke a very special Indo-Romanian tradition dealing with human freedom and make a call for your judgment.
Early 1990's Romanian new press acknowledged both India's international support to political prisoners and their recognition to pundit Jawaharlal Nehru who provoked a visit of then UN Secretary General U Thant.
Dr. S. Radhakrishnan, when vice president of India, made shorter the sentence of poet Radu Gyr.
As a representative to UN International Association of Educators for World Peace, I request now, Mr. President of India, your high intervention that Mr. Ilie Ilaşcu, parliamentarian, jailed in Tiraspol, for only guilt of being Romanian, to be liberated.
The International Academy Mihai Eminescu
First draft – 1981 – to be completed by acknowledgments, other names of poets, thinkers, artists, translators, eminescologists, educators, desiring to be together unto poetry/shanti.
Albania, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Chile, China, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungarx, India, Iran, Irak, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Moldova, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Senegal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, United Kingdom, USSR, USA, Yugoslavia
MEMBERS / HONORARY INVITED
Rafael Alberti, Robert Bly, Emil Cioran, Rosa del Conte, Yolanda Eminescu, Evgheni Evtushenko, John Fowles, Vaclav Havel, Daisaku Ikeda, Eugen Ionesco, Octavio Paz, Amrita Pritam (president since 1981), Salman Rushdie, Leopold Sedhar Senghor, Bogdan Suhodolsky, Grigore Vieru.
MEMBERS AT LARGE
Anna Aalten, B. Abanuka, Tawfik El Abdo, Prachoomsuk Achava-Amrung, Ioan Alexandru (organizer), Ion Andreiţă, O. M. Anujan, Lourdes Arizpe, Werner Bahner, Andrei Bantaş, Romano Baroni, Georges Barthouil, Al Bayati, Enric Becescu, Eva Behring, Amita Bhose, Danuta Bienkowska, Carlo Bernardini, Eveline Blamont, Ana Blandiana, Lucian Boz, Ion Caramitru, Margaret Chatterjee, Mary Ellen-Chatwin, Mihai Cimpoi, Silvia Chiţimia, Henri Claessen, Georges Condominas, Lean-Louis Courriol, Robert Creeley, Petru Creţia, Marco Cugno, Nicolae Dabija, Rodny Daniel, Nilima Das, Sisir Kumar Das, Mahendra Dave, Guenther Deicke, Francis Dessart, Stanislaw Dobrowolski, P. Vidyasagar Dayal, Metoda Dodic-Fikfak, Mihai Drăgan, Livia Drăghici, Jules Dufur, Zoe Dumitrescu-Buşulenga, Anton Dumitriu, Monika Egde, Christian Eggebert, Didona Eminescu, Roland Erb, Jiri Felix, Galdi Laszlo, Roy Mac Gregor-Hastie, Al Giuculescu, Allain Guillermou, Herbert Golder, Klaus Heitmann, Helena Helva, Gerard Herberichs, Carmen Hendershott, Anna Hohenwart, Peter Hook, Alexandra Hortopan, Kazimiera Illakowiczowna, Philip Iseley, Judith Isroff, Ion Iuga, Vilenka Jakac-Bizjak, Rafik Vihati Joshi, Elena M. Koenigsberg, Maria Kafkova, Iuri Kojevnikov, Henrik Konarkovski, Omar Lara, Leonida Lari, Maria Teresa Leon, Catherine Lutard, Keshav Malik, Muhamed Maghoub, Fidelis Masao, Liliana Mărgineanu, Pino Mariano, Constantin Mateescu, Anna Mathai, Dumitru Matkovski, Charles Mercieca, Ion Milos, Baldev Mirza, George Munteanu, Chie Nakane, Ion Negoiţescu, Wanda Ostap, Ayappa Panikar, Sheila Pantry, Daniel Perdigao, Augustin Petre, Irina Petrescu, Max Demeter Peyfuss, Jane Plaister, Franco Prendi, Carlos, Queiroz, Zorica Rajkovic, Lisa Raphal, Peter Raster, Ruprecht Rohr, Marcel Roşculeţ, Mario Ruffini, Angelo Sabbattini, A. M. Sadek, Zeus Salazar, Patricia Sarles, Monika Segbert, Joachim Schuster, Vinod Seth, Satyavrat Shastri, Andrei Simic, Norman Simms, William Snodgrass, Mihai Stan, Dumitru Stăniloae, Sygmunt Stobersky, Sanda Stoleru, Sorin Stratilat, Arcadie Suceveanu, Eric Sunderland, Bathelemy Taladoire, Akile Tezkan, Eugen Todoran, Fernando Tola, Mona Toscano-Pashke, Urmila Rani Trikha, Kliment Tsacev, Mihai Ursachi, Bruno Uytersprot, Nelson Vainer, Isabela Valmarin, Dimitrie Vatamaniuc, Romulus & Mihu Vulcănescu, J.L. Vig, Brenda Walker, Xu Wende, Reinhold Werner, Rudolf Windish, Mario Zamora
MEMBERS IN MEMORIAM
Anna Ahmatova, Sergiu Al-George, Gheorghe Anghel, Tudor Arghezi, George Bacovia, Ion Barbu, Lucian Blaga, Samson Bodnărescu, Alexandru Bogdan, N.N. Botez, Petre Brânzeu, Victor Buescu, Anta Raluka Buzinschi, George Călinescu, I. L. Caragiale, Iorgu Caragiale, Toma Chiricuţă, Pompiliu Constantinescu, Aron Cotruş, Ion Creangă, Dimitrie Cuclin, Mihail Dragomirescu, Mircea Eliade, Gheorghe Eminescu, Gheorghe Eminovici, Franyo Zoltan, Galgi Laszlo, Gala Galaction, Mozes Gaster, Onisifor Ghibu, Petre Grimm, Ion Goraş, N.I. Herescu, G. Ibrăileanu, Nicolae Iorga, Petru Iroaie, Josef Sandor, Ivan Krascko, Mite Kremnitz, Franco Lombardi, E. Lovinescu, Titu Maiorescu, Alfred Margul-Sperber, Veronica Micle, Matei Millo, Gheorghe Nedioglu, Constantin Noica, Ramiro Ortiz, Sylvia Pankhurst, Vasile Pârvan, Perpessicius, Ioana Em. Petrescu, Gheorghe Pituţ, Miron Pompiliu, Augustin Z. N. Pop, Cornelui M. Popescu, Aron Pumnul, Salvatore Quasimodo, Ianis Ritsos, Mihail Sadoveanu, George Bernard Shaw, Ioan Slavici, Nichita Stănescu, Carmen Sylva, Carlo Tagliavini, Fani Tardini, Vasile Văduva, Tudor Vianu
EMINESCU, A FOLKLORE...
(by Vinod Seth)
They call Eminescu a poet, a gem
I always called him a diamond
I called him folk-lore
He, whom we call Eminescu
Hardly separated from the air anywhere
A poet called him a tree, an echo
But he who is as clear as stones in the brook
Is a smoothened dazzling diamond
Never from mountain poetry is torn
Eyes from his Brancusi bird
Fly high to sit by his bust
Ion Mândrescu, the artist of skill
Takes away poetry from his crust
And hangs on him the diamond bullets
To let him be the martyr in revolution
Poet he was, but poets don't die
Eminescu was the folklore of revolutions
He hung poetry like muslin cloths
On his face a smile in store
Folklore made Eminescu and Eminescu made folklore
A Hindi, Sanskrit base as before
Eminescu took a round of whole this globe
Poetry beheads him, gives him folklore
Eminescu sings an epic tune to us
Eminescu we hear on telecom
Then we ask him May we come in?
Eminescu say Yes if you glass cut the rocks
P.S. You will be pleased a sculpture (a woman's head in brass in French Museum's collection, made by Bruncush, was recently exhibited in the National Gallery of Modern Art, which was the first sculpture I saw from Bruncushi. If more than one busts of Eminescu are sent may be we can give them to some institutions.
(By Vinod Seth)
Death in the year of Eminescu's death
Better than Romanians speak
And speak they 25 years ache
Achile's heal has kicked Ceausescu's head
And with bullets riddled his face
We wouldn't dare a return
While dying he doesn't look as young
As much as in publicity photographs
which his ambassador has to give or gave
Only you are young
Noe live with Romanian grace...
Up and up on this hill is love
Then on the peak is a flag
Brancusi has put there a slab
Romanians call it Eminescu's grave
Up on the hill one year is past
Up on the hill a look down is cast
Flags fly 80 000 at half mast
Revolution is like those of the French
Like Shiva's dance on Christ's cross
They had a thirst for poison, had to quench
The people had told at last who is the boss
Christmas said it is Santa-Claus
Death said no! he has worn my dress
The only liberty is on peoples' face.
Now will you read my poem again
Yes if my all friends are slain
And only free self of Romania is again
This army is friend of the poets
The army is Eminescu and also his poem
Eminescu at his death centenary awake
Has turned the quick most page
Salutes to people, to Eminescu, to army
Government's area TV serial case
The intended review to the dissertation of Ms. Zircha Vaswani became mostly a pastiche. Because we have to deal with a very free, kind of mystical construction of comparisons, in which Mihai Eminescu's poems and Indian scriptures are brought side-by-side into a fascinating personal adventure of the author. The abhored by now Eminescu cult in his motherland turns into an Indian cult, with a chance to be recovered, in competition, for own culture.
A sacrificial work, a puja full of piety and effervescence addresses everybody on the way, like in a new beginning of the religious aesthetic spirit. Courageous or euphoric, like in a trance, the author restarts as if the universe like in solitary temple procession, hearing her native prayers in verses by Eminescu.
Ioan Alexandru, Amita Bhose and myself were colleagues of doctorate under guidance of professor Zoe Dumitrescu-Buşulenga. Ioan translated odes of Pindar in his dissertation itself, Amita published separately her book of translations from Eminescu into Bengali, myself didn't translate a line (perhaps also because Baudelaire, my topic, is the most translated foreign poet into Romanian). Ms. Zricha Vaswani translates Eminescuss “Indian” poems as her own soul and hope.
I don'n know her personally. There are universities with the name of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar in Agra, Hyderabad, Lucknow, Muzaffarpur, Delhi. The architect of Indian Constitution (while handling it to me also, the late president of India Shankar Dyal Sharma said: The Constitution of the World!) had the message. “Educate, organize, agitate”.
A MASTER COURSE IN PSYCHOLOGY-SOCIOLOGY ON ENERGETIC NONVIOLENCE AND NON-POSSESSION
Main themes of the master course on energetic nonviolence and non-possession:
Exploring social violence. Motivation of violent behaviour (protection, „fight or flight”, groups and identity). Conflict prevention – systemic (globalization, international crime), structural (predatory states, horizontal inequities), operational (accelerators and detonators of conflict – e.g. Poverty of sources, afflux of small guns, elections).
Anthropology of nonviolence: Jain ahimsa and aparigraha. Buddhist karuna. Christian pity. Gandhian nonviolence. Principles of anekanta (relativity).
Ancient Mahavira has classified people in three categories: having many desires (Mahechha), having few desires (Alpechha), having no desires (Ichhajayi). The economy of nonviolence, along with poverty eradication, applies also Mhavira's concept of vrati (dedicated) society. He gave three directions regarding production: not to be manufacturated weapons of violence (ahimsappyane), not to be assembled weapons (asanjutahikarne), not to be made instruction for sinful and violent work (apavkammovades). Following anekanta, the philosophy of Mahavira synthesizes personal fate and initiative.
Book case: Blaga, energie românească / Lucian Blaga, Romanian energy by Vasile Băncilă / Cluj, Colecţia „Gând românesc”, 1938 (a re-edition with notes and a bio bibliographic table by Ileana Băncilă, Timişoara, Editura Marineasa, 1995), is the first book on poet and philosopher, remained until today “the most subtle analysis of ethnic coordinates of Blagianism, on the fund of daring philosophy of Romanian spirit” (Răzvan Codrescu). To the “mioritic” space, (hill), Băncilă adds the „supramioritic” (mountain) and submioritic (Danube, „imperial Danube”). Vasile Băncilă wrote, discreetly, under communist repression, four volumes of „aphorisms and para-aphorisms”, published posthumously, 1990's, bringing out own gigantic energies.
„The created world is the stage of divine theater, and people are the actors. This theaters has scenery, props and changes of stage at once fantastic and realist, and people act almost always very well their role, what doesn't happen in the usual theaters or plays of theater.
Shakespeare has caught only a ray from divine dramaturgy and delights up to transfigured amazement. But what would it be if we could contemplate, in its universality, the drama created by God? Only the mystics understand something from it.” (Vasile Băncilă).
The divine energies were theologized betwee the two world wars by Dumitru Stăniloae.
Here are some excerpts from Romanian thinkers of the same epoch on related topics (translated by George Anca).
„The intellect, destined among others to the enigmatic operation to husk intuition from accidental and to rise it on a high plateau of essences, creates in contact with concrete intuition certain concepts which from logical point of view are impossible, because they imply the antinomy. As illustration, let choose an example which played a remarkable role in certain „logics”. The concepts we speak about are all made after the shape and resemblance of the concept „becoming”. The concept of „becoming” closes in it, as it was remarked, an antinomy. This concept, analysed under logical angle, splits in contradictory terms: nonexistence-existence. Under pure logical aspect, the concept of „becoming” is impossible, it couldn't be made on way of logical synthesis out of the two antinomic terms. The concept has been made on foundation direct of „intuition”, which shows us the „becoming” as possible.
When the intellect performs, for instance, the act of puting of a space, of a moment, of a unity, it believes justified to repeat at infinite this act, at least on an ideal plan. Such an initial act is generated virtually at infinite on the basis of special dynamics of the intellect. The licence of which the spirit makes use this time is that to believe in possibility of repetition without limit of the same act of puting of a something, be it even only on an ideal plan. The intellect behaves as if the initial act would comprise in itself also all the others, at infinite. An act of puting of a something is but from logical point of view identical only with itself, but it is not identical with its repetition at infinite. Evidently, the intellect assumes also this time a right, to whose influence can not purloin, but which logically leads to gratuituous creations. Notions as those of infinite space, infinite time, of infinite number, etc. presupose after all the licence about which we speak.
The human intellect, in state of autoconstruction, before operating on foundation of logical principles – operates paradoxically, with feats of strength, on bases of licences we don't know who accorded to it. All these licences are logically impermeable. Their totality constitutes a kind „permanent” coefficient in genere. This coefficient must be accepted as it is.”
„We have fixed, through these few ideas, the pillars of a theory which authorises us to see in a new light also the problem of „archetypes”. It is no doubt that in creations of culture (myths, art, metaphysics, religious ideas, moral ideas, etc.) the nuclear presence of certain „archetypes” can be guessed and then discovered as such in the back of disguisings which it endures. And it is no doubt that the nuclear presence of some archetypes can be discovered also in the fantesies of psychopats. But a capital difference intervenes between modes as „the archetypes” manifest in processes of culture and how they manifest in the fantesies of psychopats...
Archetypes, out of most different ones, we can envision as effective nuclei around which so many creations of culture coagulate, but in these processes of creation, the archetypes appear „always” modelled „in stylistic patterns”, being dominated by these, as long as in fantesies of psychopats some „autonomous complexes” make felt their presence...
In marge of such considerations it can be emited the hypothesis that in pshichic-spiritual life of each human individual the archetypes and stylistic factors are effectively present like certain „powers”. When between these powers is declared a disequilibrium, in the sense that, through the enrgy inherent to them, the stylistic factors are not any more able to dominate archtypes, is given the failure of the individual in psychopathy.”
Dan Botta :
„The radiant universe of the Romanian and perfect world of his conceptions is unendured. This is the entire sense, single sense of Eminescu's pessimism. Eminescu adores the world, contemplate it greedily, gets drunk – like in the verse of „Rugăciunea unui dac”/The prayer of a Dacian – from the fountains of its splendours, but he knows himself destined to sorrow. So it explains that sentiment „dureros de dulce”/sorrowfully sweet of existence and all what in his verse is explosion of sorrow is anthem of joy alltogether. He pushed his pessimism – if this is pessimism – up to there where Romanians push it. Books of Schopenhauer didn't give neither its conscience. It is alive since centuries in Romanian people. The Romanian says: „I make shadow to the earth”. I put once this word in connection with believes of Thracia: the existence throws a spot on luminous body of world. Life is a guilt, a sin. The testimony of Herodot, who had noted this faith of Thracia, is confirmed enirely by Romanian people.
„Shadow to earth”, this sentiment of supreme bitterness, of solitude and supreme uselessness, goes through Eminescian poetry. There are moments of deepest depression.
They don't exclude – on the contrary – the conscience of infinite beauty of world. They utter the thirst of detachment from the contingential, the thirst for evasion, of the extasy. They invoke death – as threshold of joy, of that region where are open the perspectives of supreme beauty, the power of participation to phrenetic life of the whole – eternal comunication, cuminecătura/the eucharist of elements.”
Constantin Noica :
„The being of world is neither something determined, but nor blind undetermination, but endless possibility, destined to accomplish itself to an all-good-ordering intellect or through forms and laws ready given from outside.
And in the last thought, that of today man, it seems as if, indeed, the being of world is an endless possibility of the matter, but not of that which is informed from outside, but of that which makes alone its form; that though the being of world is a becoming with history.
This history of the real which affirms is described, step by step, during own history, the thought which denies...
When it rises from anorganic nature to that organic, the matter obtains something unbelievable: the finitude.
In the bosom of anorganic nature, everything had to be infinite, the matter couldn't sum up. The states were infinite, the movements – unlimited...
With its infinite variety of forms, the alterity which closes into an identity realises the infinity in the finite, the individual, the individual being, the „organism”; It is like a whole inside of the whole of world; it is a part issued from condition of part. Only with the individual being it starts the world of realities instead of that of states, pocesses, elements or general substances...
In fund, they are categories of the „individual” real, therefore, categories of the finitude, as the five Platonian ones were not, neither the being in genere, nor the state, nor the movement, and nor identity or alterity.”
„The plurality is the aspect of maturity of things...
The thought of man only when „distinguishes” starts to understand and only when says „we” comes out from minor stage...
Association, adhesion, aggregation, amalgamation and so many other modes of dead or living matters are suggested directly in bosom of plurality. A second one, naturally, is the multiplication, which not only that carry , like the first, over plurality, but it alone is spring of plurality, like in reproduction. A third operation, rising to power, comes to prove mature operation in the bosom of plurality, in measure in which it integrates the first two.
For rising to power is a synthesis, an added multiplication. It represents an expansion which in the same time preserves itself concentrated around a term, giving thus to the plurality both the power to affirm itself as such, as well as, like in case of the wave, that of not losing and spreading through one affirmation. When one sees in the show of world – how we register it with the plant and now with the entire material universe – the operations undertook everywhere, as well as organised animation which resulted from here, one asks what more man has to add.
The man is come to add „the numbering”.
The number, the „arithmos”, becomes the golden key for the world of plurality...
You can not number with a single unity; from beginning you must have the decade, therefore 1, 2,..., 9, nine simple distinct units, „plus” the superior unit of decade. And what are you doing in definitive when you number? You count before the first 9 units, that is you name them in order; then you count the tens seen as units, that is you name nine „tens” and so on by nine.
But what is this? It is our number, are our „classes” of numbers, it is our golden key for plurality...
The man believed that the number represents glorification of plurality and recognition of its sovreignty in the world. In fact didn't do but to trivialize it...
Only retained plurality, only unity in plurality give to this a sense...
And the unit of plurality is other thing than both unity and plurality: It is totalaity.”
„The being gives only the „knitting between general and individual”...
The science of being doesn't reach its target if it doesen't account of individual being, of „this” arbre, „this” man, „this” historical creature. But it must do it for „any individual being, therefore from perspective of general being....
The individuality can give and can acquire any determinations ( like vortex in void of material points or spreading in void of waves), but has not truly the measure of being.
The world can be full of this secondary nonbeing; and if in the world of inanimate matter it is not striking, because here just secondary unbeing is the rule and being the exception, in exchange, in the worlld of life and of man – which has costed the matter so much endeavour in order to coagulate – the non being and nonaccomlishment are a true cosmic failure, in a sense. And this doesn't mean but: the conversion didn't happen.
It seems then that the ontologic model resulting from here is simple: an individuality is open through determinations which open under a generality; an ontological field acquire being and insurence, as becoming field of generality...
... The being of things, the being of the existent searched by the ontology – namely: what is truly in the world? - acquires, with the archaei, a solidary conceptual answer with all what we have done visibly in the developing of Romanian sentiment of being, from the „question” over what it is upto the possible ontologic model.”
“The Romanian sentiment of being is other than that of ultimate safety of it – not in what regards the knoweledge of man over himself, rather of the order of essence than of immediate and sure existence. That for, we have prefered to say here pre-being, sometimes, for being (which comprises both essence as well as existence); but in the same time, we don't invoke the simple „essence”, because this „separates” from existence, while thr pre-being presuposes and sends to it all the time.
Under pre-being we comprised:
the unaccomplished being, expressed in our language through „n-a fost să fie”/it wasn't to be;
the superior being, through „era să fie”/it was likely to be;
the eventual being, with „va fi fiind”/it will be being;
the possible being, with „ar fi să fie”/it would be to be;
the being of entrance into being, with „este să fie”/it is to be;
the finished, consummated accomplished being, with „a fost să fie”/it was to be.
In all these modalities it remains it appears a sending to existence as a moment of accomplishment.But the moment remains an end of road, the modalities being its steps of ensuring.
For why the being must appear in the hypostasis of safety and of complete reality (which could mean, for some ones, the simple „individual reality”)?”
„The man, in front of the non-ego or of a cosmic infinity, seeing its smallness, answers often with absolutisation of own ego. It is a reaction totally dispropotioned and as such absurd. But as long as the man has lost the inconscience however sensible of the animals, through which these live in harmony with universal reality, he is obliged to search a compensation which to take him out from dispair of noticing his unsignificance in the infinite of total existence.
But the soulution found leads to solitude and to nihilism, that is to still a bigger dispair. So that the true solution must be searched in other part: in noticing of the absolute in things and beyond of them, who made these things and man himself, of whom be it modest reflex is the man and to whom he follows to return. This is, in fact, the essence of any proper religion. In this mode, the man rebecomes an absolute, but not through automation, but through integration.
But the modern man moves off often from religious vision and that for exploits the method of autonomous absolutization, sometimes even luciferian, of own ego. On this way, the modern man conceives himself as a kind of metaphisical Huitzilopochtli. But this is a way of salvation which leads him at last to the madhouse. And if he is philosopher, he creates phenomenist systems, to not say phenomenal.”
”We can not know the absolute but as reflex, or as echo. Hence we can not know even at least a part of the absolute, because the absolute is entire in each part and to know a part of it would mean to know the whole absolute or absolute as such.
When it is question of absolute, we can not express in quantitative values, we can not say, for example, that we know the absolute through progressive accumulations with tendency to know it once completely, as some ideologues apparently scientific believe. The absolute can not be revealed in fragments, but in aspects, transfigurations, reflexes or echos.
The knowledge of the absolute is a Taborite phenomenon or act. It lights and blinds at the same time. This knowledge ressembles to a certain extent with the kind how some blind men „see” the light. They have not a proper organ for this, but feel the light as an invasion, as a transfiguration of existence.
These reflexes or echos of the absolute are captured and valorised in dogmas. These later are crystals at the same time of light and of mystery. They are the precised substance of mystical knowledge, of essential knowledge and represents all what human mind can understand more deeply. Through them we are free of both shortcoming of skepticism, which is funeral then when it doesn't content to be only the beginning of philosophy, and not its end, as wel as of that of positive knowledge, wich is brutal when it mixes in the field of ineffable subtlety of the absolute.”
„The light disappears, but doesn't transform into darkness.
The darkness disappears, but doesn't transform in light.
Because here we touch the two ultimate principles of existence, wich are reciprocal inconvertible.
Is the darkness a weaker light and the light a weaker darkness?
Any opinion would have the physicists, morally and ontologically, it can not be a transition from one to another. From this point of view, at most the light can destroy the darkness or inverse, but can not transform one into another.”
“The truth is that religious men and all people with spiritual living are preoccupied by evil, but with aim of salvation or of moral perfecting – and not for falling in pessimism, in drama, in doubting about health and sense of existence as such and so much little of its creator. They are not therefore obsessed of evil as of a master who become the patron of the world, as of something which spoils irremediable our life, but as a kind of props, be it even grave, in the strugle and unique theatre of existence, of our life.
The evil becomes, in other words, something which us, with help of God, we master.
With this the reference inverts and the evil, as massive as it would appear, becomes however something secondary.”
„The light disappears, but doesn't transform into darkness.
The darkness disappears, but doesn't transform in light.
Because here we touch the two ultimate principles of existence, wich are reciprocal inconvertible.
Is the darkness a weaker light and the light a weaker darkness?
Any opinion would have the physicists, morally and ontologically, it can not be a transition from one to another. From this point of view, at most the light can destroy the darkness or inverse, but can not transform one into another.”
God, in hypostasis the Father, represents the pure existence, and in hypostasis St. Ghost, represents God in us. Between God the Father and God St. Ghost, stays God the Son, who is – according to Christian metaphysics – the logos become body, that is the form in which we can understand God. Chrit, that is God the Son, is the intermediary which make the link God the Father and God the St. Ghost, that is between emanatist God and immanentist God, between God who creates the entire existence and God who is in us.
The after-war state has become merchant, participant to affairs, industrialist, competitor to its subjects themselves. The old neutrality has evaporated from conscience of citizens. Eahch of them doesn't content to ask the State to warrant his person and fortune, but asks intervention of State in any occasion, if not directly in his favour, but at least in favour of production class to which he belongs.
„Our STATE is too expansive for our COUNTRY”. Too expansive and unproper. The theory woud be it good; but we who are not doing theories – or don't do than „to explain” the realities which are and not „to justify” realities which we would desire to set up – we can not forget a fundamental fact: that Romanian modern state has been created by townmen or by devotees of urban cult. And this was the original sin of this state. Because in Romanian country the urban spirit didn't ever exist; or at least it was never a prevailing decissive component of Romanian collectivity...
„The principle of material individuation, through time and through space, springs from a metaphysics of objective existence, in which particular essences are conceived as things.
And the principle of individuation through form, in sense of „act” is derived from a personalist metaphysics of working , efficient being.
In Romanian metaphysics of the ins/individual, on cognitive plan, it is given by a certain configurative unity of features and by a certain key which deciphers the significance and position of events in relation to the ensemble of the existence.
It is question of „chip”/shape, as originality of features of the individual; of „rost”/sense, as his significance in the world, and of „soartă”/fate, as his integration in time”. „On the other hand, this touch of positivism, of resistence of world and of things from it, which opposes their own manner of being, becomes evanescent in front of work of the builder, with creed that „where God wants, it is wan the order of nature”.
„In Romanian, differently from other languages, there are two words of different origins: „a trăi”/to live (Slave) and „viaţă”/life (Latin), which make clearer what I want to say. It is right that life is a fact, namely one foreign from me, but at the same time it is a fact that life is lived, that can not be otherwise than lived. Only biologically, that is abstract, the life is a „phenomenon” like the stone, the triangle, etc., having, surely, the property that it evolves. But in reality, life is lived, it is something of kind of becoming, otherwise said, life is given to me in order to live it. (The ontologic difference between the being according the substance and the being according to the time is outlined , in totally other context, by Aristotle in „Physics”. Here is the joining between point of reference (the self) and the other side of me, the life. „I” live my life; not only that it is „given” to me to live (life as foreign from me), but life is given to me to „live” it”.
Teodor M. Popescu:
I must say a few words about Orthodox Church. Many judge it, accusing it that didn't play a special role in the history of culture. Or, this means to don't know its past, activity and influence had in ith East. Surely, the Orthodox Church wasn't in situation of Roman Church, which had to take over in the West the inheritance of Roman Empire, but its cultural work is not at all negligeable. In a certain sense, the Orthodox Church made more for its believers than Church of Rome itself. In represented in the frame of state the most important and most venerable cultural institution, it has cultivated national language, has created an entire literature, has its art, has founded institutions of great social and national utility, has constituted a true school for people, has educated it, modelled its soul, insufflated a specific piety, virtues and morals which are the dowry of any Orthodox people. I consider that can be affirmed that no other Church made so much for national culture of people and especially didn't developed to such extent the sense of Christian charity and love as the Orthodox Church. If we take into account the role played by Orthodox Church in the bosom of peoples, which, for many centuries, have been deprived of state organisation, we must recognize that it merits fully the name of mother of these peoples and of culture of these, which, until the XIXth century, was a medieval, churchish and monastic culture, full of faith and harmony.
„The first step is that of the beginner, who must endeavour to habituate with virtues. The virtues are in number of seven. At their beginning stays the faith, at end the love, preceded immediately by non-suffering. The love concentrates in it all virtues and passes tth man to knowledge or contemplation.
The object of the virtues and of endeavours from the first step is also liberation from sufferings, its direct aim, the non-suffering. The virtues combating sufferings serve thus undirectly to the spirit, constituting a step toward next aim, wich is the knowledge.
The second step is called of contemplation, althouh St. Maxim doesn't use this word in unique sesnse, but gives it, as we saw, more meanings, according to object to which refers, but which, in general, is almost always a creature. Only rarely and namely then when he divides the ascent in two steps and not in three, we understand through it also mystic contemplation, which refers to god directly. But when he divides this ascent in three steps, the contemplation constituting second part, it means almost always exclusively contemplation oriented towards creatures. This contemplation has as object the”rations” from creatures. Through it the man possesses a spiritual sight of rations from created things, through it the nature is to him a pedagogue toward God.
The third step, of mystical theology, doesn't occupy any more with rations from things, but with those which refer to God himself, the object being the oversaint, overhappy, overunuttered and oveunknown godhead and over all, the infinity. This knowledge of God is an extasis of love which persists unmoved in a directing toward God”.
„The person is the reality with highest degree of existence, because it knows about its existence and of persons and things. And it is so because „este”/is, like „eu”/I, like „tu”/you or like „el”/he, like a conscience directed to other conscience. „Este”/is of a person has such a great importance for me through the fact that it has the new form „eşti”/you are, or of a „tu”/you, that you know of me. „Este”/is of a person is important because „este”/is an „el”/he, as existence conscious of mine, that it knows or can know about me as I. And my existence as person is so important for other persons, not only due to the fact that I am otherwise than other persons, but that I am an „eu”/I who knows about them, that I can be for them a „tu”/you or an „el”/he, conscious of them, or capable to know about them. The simple words : „sunt”/am, „eşti”/are, „este”/is doesn't express yet the mystery of person, but only their addition to the words: „eu”/I, „tu”/you, „el (ea)”/he (she).
The stone, the plant, the animal can not say : „eu,tu,el(ea)”/I, you, he (she). Hence nor: „sunt, eşti, este”/am, are, is. Only man can say these words about them, that they are, but can not add to their names these words: „tu”/you, „el (ea)”/he (she). The man remains, in a way, himself, alone in the middle of them. „Tu”/you and „el”/he mean an answer in reference to „eu”/I, with which I indicate me. This answer can not give to me stones, plants, animals.And in such solitude, I am lacked of the complete existence, or in sure mode of intensity of existence. When I try to don't have any more the others as „tu”/you or as „el”/he (which can become for me „tu”/you), I myself weeken in existence, or I loose it.
Perhaps into an „eu”/I which habituated to have not any more at all a „tu”/you stays the hell, the extreme diminution of existence. In „eu sunt”/I am of Descartes and so much even we don't affirm as centres ones for others. I am as joyful to say „eu sunt”/I am, as to be told by other „tu eşti”/you are or that „el (ea) este”/he (she) is. And only in this reciproc reference ones to others we exist each in complete mode. My complete existence I can not hence have but as personal supreme centre.
In this it is shown the common being as living being, as being lived in communion by different persons, as being enriched through all persons, on measure of number of persons found in relation and especially in communion. But my complete existence can not give me but a personal existence, the supreme conscience.”
Indeed, the Orthodoxism, as Christian spirituality, must remain over earthly interests. Its fund is a revelation. Invariable revelation. The Orthodoxism can be clarified through examination of traditions, but not modernized in spirit of time. The mission of Orthodoxism is to keep, for ever, the teachings of Christ in their unalterated form. The românism/Romanian spirit, on the contrary, is the spirituality which gives to us the mean to go with the time, to modernize us. It is the fire which purifies our ethnic, in order to put this in measure to create original works. The Ortodoxism is tradition, the românism/Romanian spirit is vocation.”
„The merit of existentialist philosophy is that it has discovered the absolute superiority of the person face to the thing, to nature, to impersonal reality, be it even spiritual, and, in the same time, superiority of relations between persons, out of which she and you, in comparison with relation between person and thing. The relation between person and person is something much more generator of life, is a perfect relation, of a plenitude upto which it can not even to dream to rise the poor living which is tried by person in relation to the impersonal. Only the relation with other persons can make you to live completely your life, only it is capable to stir all your ambitions, sentiments; only conscience that other persons follow you makes to come up from your depths, which you even dreamt containing something, powers of creation or of destruction straight away gigantic. In exchange, the relation with a thing can not take out from somnolence and indifference in which you are plunged but tired, superficial vibrations without resonances in depth. If you appreciate however, often, with passion certain things, you do it for the sake of persons you know they follow you.”
„The Fascism is, as well as the National-Socialism, unreligious. These are ethno-historical explosions, but no religious... The Romanian right does not seem with these two forms of European right, being mystical-Christian... That is it doesn't feel well elswhere than in shadow of churches and triptychs.”
„The autonomous man is illusory, because either he is under empire of transcendence , and then he is religious, or is under empire of nature, and then he is materialist. Human autonomy can not be conclusive. ”
„There are too great principles which struggle in an authentical consciousness: the principle of authority and the principle of freedom. I try to reconcile them in a sort of fundamental automatism of man in social body. The true organization belongs to relation between man and state, formulated juridically so exactly, in order to superpose no one over the other: neither individual over state, nor state over individual. The true institution is but isn't felt... Yet, not the individual is the source of order in the state. He is but only biological, that is physic. And spiritually he is the reflex of society, of community.
„In my time, it circulated a word: if someone untill thirty years is not democrate and of the left, he has no heart; if over thirthy years is not conservative and of the left, he is dull!... People live in the Tower of Babel because they are people. The human is not natural. It represents a biological mutation, consequence of the fall in the sin. And with all these, Christianly speaking, between Kant and Adam it is no any difference... De! It is regrettable that time passes. The efficacity of time pains... Untill now I swung, ideatically, between superman and noman... present in all tragedies and victories of this country, I feel like a pole in the middle of storm. The only hope is that, man as I am, God loves me also so... between human and nohuman”.
„The man thinks predicatively or, more precise, propositionally and systematically. When he is autonomous, he puts neither on his affirmations, nor on his negations the seal of originality...
The salvation is of religious nature, and not logical one. A concept is never exhaustive, because uncomplete is also the expressed object. The metaphysics is useless in front of death. Only the mysticalness is valid. The mysticalness is an autonomously human speculation and that for the senses acquirred through metaphysical speculation keep of individuation.”