The moral ideal of a warrior is the shepherd.
Continuing from the previous post yesterday, I’m exploring a better way to view things. I tried to portray the moral character of a shepherd in light of romantic relations already. There is a huge overlap, of course, with just about everything else.
Attempts in recent history to use troops for disaster relief have ranged between comical and sick. Without a fundamental cultural bias in favor of actually helping folks, troops are really the worst at this job. They are trained night and day to think of killing people and destroying things, even to the point of mandatory marching chants about the likes of “napalm sticks to kids.” This is not simply dark humor, but is a well-known method of desensitizing civilized folks to uncivilized behavior necessary for modern warfare.
The only reason troops are ever used for emergencies this way is because they are used to jumping into the unknown, and will hit the ground running. Change the objective just a little, and they can open access, move people and stuff, sometimes actually do something good. Their primary virtue here is readiness for moving and doing really difficult stuff, not any actual fitness for the task. They are very much better prepared for a wide range of unexpected challenges.
It should be obvious this is a primary virtue which should be cultivated in everyone who is mission driven from the Spirit Realm. All the more so since we reject the importance of this realm. Our existence here on this plane is a demonstration of why you might be in a hurry to find some other universe, some other reality. Because the mystical mind does not take too seriously the concerns of this realm, we should have no trouble with packing light.
It’s this preparation to live nobly in the most ignoble conditions which distinguishes the warrior in our popular mythology. That precious few of our military actually rise to such heights is why we give out medals. There are medals for simply doing most of what you are supposed to do, and not causing any real trouble. That’s because there is really so very little we can do on this plane of existence to make each other care about what matters. We can offer incentives for external performance, but actual personal morality is simply not that malleable with the tools available. If it’s not already there, your best hope is to persuade someone to fake it, ironically by appealing to their lower motivations. Actually being internally noble can come only as a gift from Above.
We as seekers of truth, who represent something far above this plane of existence, should strive to embrace the essence of the fantasy without the silliness. We are the shepherds of those willing to participate in the upward drawing of truth, until they become shepherds in their own right. It’s the method, the ethic of the warrior ideal, which we adopt. We can afford to see our lives here below consumed in the fire of devotion, and let it end under any circumstances and at any time, because the truth demands it. So it shouldn’t be too much to ask that we endure deprivation with a serious commitment to keep trying until something inside us — connected to the Spirit Realm — knows it’s time to move on to something else.
The one thing I cannot do is make these words anything more than nice thoughts for you.