Tacking between virtue sets

    In Wiliam James Tychonievich's post "Satan divided against himself", he uses a metaphor of a boat tacking against the wind to describe the progression of evil from Luciferic to Ahrimanic to Sorathic.  Tychonievich also makes use of the idea of Virtue Sets from G. at the Junior Ganymede blog in this post to describe two goods: Devic Good and Ahuric Good.  In the "Satan divided against himself" post, William James Tychonievich describes human nature as to "Pursue good, avoid evil"  From this, he then describes Ahrimanic Evil as "Sacrifice the pursuit of good in order to avoid evil" and Luciferic Evil as "Sacrifice the avoidance of evil in order to pursue good (e.g. to seek pleasure)."  From this, Tychonievich describes Ahuric Good as the type of good that seeks further good and Devic Good as the type of good that avoids evil.  
    
    I have a somewhat different attitude towards Luciferic and Ahrimanic Evil than that expressed in Tychonievich's post.  But the focus of this post is not Ahrimanic and Luciferic Evil as such but the tacking metaphor and the concepts of Ahuric and Devic Good, both of which are valuable insights.  So, why not combine the two?       
    In this diagram, evil is above the line in the middle and good is below the line.  The left is associated with seeking good and the right with avoiding evil, so Devic Good and Ahrimanic Evil are on the same side, while Luciferic Evil and Ahuric Good are on the same side.  Also, since in the tacking metaphor Sorathic, purely destructive evil is the endpoint of evil, there needs to be something on the opposite pole of good.  According to Rudolf Steiner's cosmology, Sorath will incarnate in several thousand years and will be the Biblical Antichrist.  So, Christ is naturally the opposite of Sorath.  (I do not personally believe in this idea of Steiner's about the Antichrist but since Rudolf Steiner's ideas of Lucifer, Sorath and Ahrimanic Evils are the original source of this model, it makes sense to consider these ideas). 

    On the other hand, since Sorathic evil is destruction, the opposite is creation.  Further, the two goods Ahuric and Devic Good can be thought of as both coming together to form Creation.  We need both to pursue good and to avoid evil to have Creation.  If there is no pursuit of good, then nothing will happen but if there is no avoidance of evil, then creation will degenerate.  
    
    In Tychonievich's original tacking metaphor, human beings can start one of two ways.   Either by being enticed into evil by Luciferic means, then overcorrecting to avoid evil leading to the Ahrimanic, then destructively raging against the Ahrimanic, leading to Sorathic.  Or, by pursuing Ahrimanic Evil for safety through control or for desire for power, then moving towards the Luciferic in reaction against the dehumanization of the Ahrimanic.  Then, trying to manage the Luciferic, making it even more destructive, leading to the Sorathic.  
   
    When I first had the idea of this diagram, I just tried to make a mirror image of the above pathway towards Sorath.  But it turns out that it works with the model.  For instance, in order to tack away from the Luciferic, one moves towards Devic Good, (in other words, one avoids the evil one is pursuing).  On the other hand, to move away from the Ahrimanic, we move towards Ahuric.  In other words, we bring forth some new good to push past the constricting mechanization of Ahriman.  And this actually fits with Steiner's idea, that in the modern world we were supposed to bring forth a new development, that we have to combat the Ahrimanic by moving through it.  
    
    The other important thing is that since this model is two-dimensional, to escape from evil it is not enough to move away from the evil in question, we also have to move towards good, towards Christ and Creation.  For instance, it appears that those who are most susceptible towards Luciferic evil are often not susceptible to Ahrimanic and conversely, the Ahrimanic are less susceptible towards Luciferic evil.  
    
    New Age types correctly deplore the evils of the Ahrimanic: the mechanistic dehumanization of the modern world.  However, they are also more vulnerable to the Luciferic - all the usual cultural subversions.  
      
    On the other hand, many of those who are resistant to the Luciferic are most vulnerable to the Ahrimanic.  This can be seen in individuals, but is also seen in countries.  The most Ahrimanic countries in the world are not particularly Luciferic, but it's a mistake to think that their Ahrimanic tendencies are thereby a good thing.  Ahrimanic Evil is still evil and for that reason, Ahriman won't save us from Lucifer.  Indeed, it's no coincidence that almost all of the worst cultural subversions, particularly those associated with the Sexual Revolution come from Ahrimanic and Luciferic conditions working together, from using technology to strengthen subversion.  

    The way to escape from the Luciferic is by cultivating Devic Good, virtue and discipline.  To flee one evil by moving towards another is no real escape.  The two-dimensional model of virtue sets is helpful for this reason because it reminds us that to move away from evil, we must move towards good.  

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