The Zen of Anti-Buddhism
- BUSHIDO:THE WAY OF THE ARMCHAIR WARRIOR
by EVAN EISENBERG
Issue of 2004-06-07
Knowledge is not important. The armchair warrior strives to attain a
state beyond knowledge, a state of deep, non-knowing connection to
the universe: in particular, to that portion of the universe which
is rich, powerful, or related to him by blood.
The unenlightened speak of "failures of intelligence." But the
armchair warrior knows that "intelligence"the effort of the mind to
observe facts, apply reason, and reach conclusions about what is
true and what ought to be doneis a delusion, making the mind turn
in circles like an ass hitched to a mill. The armchair warrior feels
in his hara, or gut, what ought to be done. He is like a warhorse
that races into battle, pulling behind him the chariot of logic and
evidence. When the people see the magnificent heedlessness of his
charge, they cannot help but be carried along.
The warrior spirit resides in the hara. It is this spirit, and not
any deed, that is the mark of the true warrior. Thus, a man who has
avoided military service may be a greater and braver warrior than a
man who has served his country in battle, sustained grave wounds,
performed "heroic" deeds, and been honored with clanking, showy
medals pinned to his garment.
Because human beings are prone to illusion, the sounds and sights of
battlethe groans of the wounded, the maimed bodies of one's
comradesmay remain in the mind for many years, like a cloud that
confuses judgment. Hence, a man who has fought on the battlefield
and has later risen to high office may be fearful of leading his
people to war. Such weakness does not afflict the armchair warrior,
who at all times is firm in his resolve.
The armchair warrior does not fear death, especially not the death
of other people.
The unenlightened mind is easily swayed by pictures. Since it fails
to grasp that life and death are illusions, the sight of the flag-
draped remains of those slain by the enemy may make it susceptible
to weakness and feelings of pity. Therefore, the armchair warrior
does not let the people see such images, except in settings that can
be properly controlled, such as his own campaign advertisements.
Luxury is the enemy of Bushido. It saps the strength of the people
and makes them weak and complacent. Therefore, the armchair warrior
strives to take wealth away from the poor and the middle classes and
give it to the wealthy, who are already so weakened that they are
So-called wise men complain that the armchair warrior is
producing "deficits," emptying the coffers of the state and sinking
it ever deeper into indebtedness to usurers and foreign
moneylenders. In their "wisdom," these so-called wise men are like
the scholar who came to speak with Nan-in. Pretending to ask a
question, the scholar flaunted his learning for ten minutes while
Nan-in, attending politely, brewed a pot of tea. When the master
filled the scholar's cup, he kept pouring until the tea overflowed
the cup, ran onto the table, and dripped to the floor, forming a
The scholar, astonished, asked the meaning of Nan-in's action. "The
mind is like this cup," said Nan-in. "If you do not empty yourself,
how can you expect to be filled?" The coffers of the state, too, are
like the cup. If they are not frequently emptied, how can they be
filled? Thus, the warrior takes it upon himself to empty the coffers
of the state into the pockets of his friends, his relations, and
other members of his class. Knowing well the corrupting power of
luxury, he distributes these treasures with reluctance. They are
accepted with equal reluctance. Yet not one among his fellows shirks
The goal of life is awareness; the goal of awareness is freedom. If
the people of a foreign land do not wish to be free, it is the duty
of the armchair warrior to force them.
The warrior strengthens his resolve and that of his followers by
chanting sutras, mantras, or other strings of words, such as
weaponsofmassdestruction or linkstoalqaeda or
bringingdemocracytotheworld. It is not important that these words
bear any relation to reality or even that they have any definite
meaning. All that matters is that they be chanted repeatedly and
with great urgency.
The Chinese word for "crisis" combines the characters for "danger"
and "opportunity." For the armchair warrior, the significance of
this is clear. Every crisis is an opportunity, and the lack of
crisis poses a grave danger. In crisis, the people turn to the
warrior for guidance. Hence, if a crisis has not occurred, the
warrior creates one. If a crisis is subsiding, the warrior inflames
it. The seventy-third hexagram of the I Ching is interpreted as
follows: "Two towers fall. When smoke fills the people's eyes, they
can be led anywhere."
Once, a group of travellers were on a perilous journey, in the
course of which they had to cross a river. Unluckily, their guide
forgot the location of the bridge, so the party had to ford the
river, which, at the place they then found themselves, was shallow
but very wide. After several minutes of wading through the icy
water, the travellers began to grumble, "This guide is worthless!
Let us abandon him and find another!" Sensing the discontent of his
charges, the guide cleverly led them into a deeper part of the
river, where the current was stronger and the footing more
treacherous. "Help us!" the travellers cried. "Esteemed guide, do
not abandon us!"
The unenlightened believe it to be the height of felicity to have no
enemies. The armchair warrior knows, however, that only a steady
supply of enemies can assure him the loyalty of his friends. When so-
called wise men warn him that in rashly slaughtering his enemies he
is merely manufacturing more of them, he smiles.
- "Circus dogs jump when the trainer cracks his whip," George
Orwell observed, "but the really well-trained dog is the one that
turns his somersault when there is no whip."
Orwell noted that language "becomes ugly and inaccurate
because our thoughts are foolish, but the slovenliness of our
language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts." And
his novel "1984" explained that "the special function of certain
Newspeak words ... was not so much to express meanings as to
National security. Western values. The world community. War
against terrorism. Collateral damage. American interests.
What's so wondrous about Orwellian processes is that they
tend to be very well camouflaged -- part of the normal scenery.
Day in and day out, we take them for granted. And we're apt to
stay away from uncharted mental paths.
In "1984," Orwell wrote about the conditioned reflex of
"stopping short, as though by instinct, at the threshold of any
dangerous thought ... and of being bored or repelled by any train
of thought which is capable of leading in a heretical direction."
Orwell described "doublethink" as the willingness "to forget
any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes
necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just so long
as it is needed."
In his afterword to "1984," Erich Fromm emphasized "the
point which is essential for the understanding of Orwell's book,
namely that `doublethink' is already with us, and not merely
something which will happen in the future, and in dictatorships."
Fifty-two years ago, Orwell wrote an essay titled "Politics
and the English Language." Today, his words remain as relevant as
ever: "In our time, political speech and writing are largely the
defense of the indefensible."
Repression and atrocities "can indeed be defended," Orwell
added, "but only by arguments which are too brutal for most
people to face, and which do not square with the professed aims
of political parties."
The above would be Orwell himself speaking. But the culture of the I
AM is a culture of orientation to phenomena. Phenomena, observation
and thinking, allows the development of what I have just been
exploring recently, the 5th Ether. The culture of the I AM is rooted
in the 5th Ether. This fifth ether, along with fire, air, water and
earth, the temperaments and the four chambered heart and four
seasons, has to do with the Fifth Ether. The Cognition Ether that
makes a full five pointed star with the lotus petals and thought
centered at the 5th ether of cognition on the brow of MAN.
St. Paul was the first person to be struck directly between the eyes
with the 5th Ether as the cohesive force of the 5the ether struck
Saul, he was made aware that it was Golgotha that had brought this
long awaited I AM ether into operation. Saul had to reach instead of
the spinal serpent S he had to sound shift his name to holding the
Light in his head, P. Now that is a terribly accurate insight for
how Saul became Paul. The light of the 5th Ether, the Logos Light,
suddenly went off like a 500 hundred watt bulb in Paul's head. He
now had to get used to the integration of Seeing. Now, Fichte of
Germany was also a baby representative of this new 5th Ether and
highly representative of how the German mind was constructed.
The culture of the I AM brings cognition practice, which is a 5th
ether motif into every aspect of phenomena. Since the Logos and the
School of Spiritual Science can move anywhere and remain
unspecialized, open, connect all manner of dots, tour through art,
science and religion, it is rooted to the Logos and the full I AM
born from Golgotha. There is nowhere, where cognition cannot go and
obviously some people have specific gifts for certain areas of
cognition. I have very little for playing of music.
Now I suspect none of you have ever heard of the 5th Ether and have
only begun to struggle with the culture of the I AM. But this
culture of the I AM is not Group Think
Here is how some consider Group think and falling into a Group Soul,
non I AM condition. It would be falling away from the mission of
Golgotha, which is I am culture.
"The mass meeting is also necessary for the reason that in it the
individual, who at first, while becoming a supporter of a young
movement, feels lonely and easily succumbs to the fear of being
alone, for the first time gets the picture of a larger community,
which in most people has a strengthening, encouraging effect . . .
In the crowd he always feels somewhat sheltered . . . When from his
little workshop or big factory, in which he feels very small, he
steps for the first time into a mass meeting and has thousands and
thousands of people of the same opinions around him, when, as a
seeker, he is swept away by three or four thousand others into the
mighty effect of suggestive intoxication and enthusiasm, when the
visible success and agreement of thousands confirm to him the
rightness of the new doctrine and for the first time arouse doubt in
the truth of his previous conviction--then he himself has succumbed
to the magic influence of what we designate as `mass
suggestion.' Adolf Hitler
At the same time we see our huge globe
becoming ``McWorld,'' we also see the tribalization of its people
into Orwell's ``Group-think.'' The individual today (and his
ability to think for himself) is lost in the sea of Globalism,
Pluralism, Multi-culturalism and Jihad. One has to be a member of a
group to find identity or even to claim his rights as a victim. A
law-breaking gang has more clout and voice than an individual law-
abiding citizen. If modernism exalted rugged individualism,
postmodernism swallows the individual into a soupy sea of ethical
relativism controlled by the perceived needs of society. "