Modern man is usually firmly convinced of the truth of his knowledge of the world, but hesitates greatly about the truthfulness of the knowledge of his own past.
Already at the distant beginning of the 18th century, outraged by theEgyptian priests, who compensated their complexes by adding 3000years of history to the lists of the Pharaohs, Sir Isaac Newton wrotethe “The Chronology of Ancient Kingdoms Amended”.
The dynamics of these doubts, expressed both before and after Newton, are proportional to the doubts expressed first in the religious dogma of Creation and then in the scientific dogma of Evolution. Another question is what exactly was always meant by „the past“ (and hence – present and future) of man.
A glimpse of the most revolutionary and widely read modern research on the subject could provide an answer to this question.
In ‚Sapiens. A Brief History of Mankind“ Yuval Harari on the one hand sincerely, but on the other with a certain extent of personal grief, proves the fact that wheat cultivated man, not the other wayaround. He is somewhat ashamed that the Rational Man, dreaming of „chicken, both fat and slow“, did not indulge in fantasy, but created one. The “fat and slow chicken” has unfortunately benefited from man just as much as the wild corn turned by humans into high-performance wheat. Had he continued the analysis in the same direction, Harari would have been able to ascertain with even greater bitterness the game that even the stones (and especially the silicon/quartz) happily played upon man.
In Homo Sapiens they found an obedient beast of burden prepared to walk them for miles and worship them in the form of idols like omnipotent gods. This may very well, partially at least, be the truth. Rudolf Steiner in „Death as a transformation of life. 24 lectures“ stresses explicitly that nearly half of the human-needed components, including air, contain silicon. Even without Steiner‘s subsequent “silicisation” of our world, this goes a long way to prove man‘s vital dependence on the “dead substance” in question. True, no one sees drama in this. We routinely refer to the end of the last and the beginning of the present century as the „Silicon Age“. It is just another stage in which we use not stone, or iron, inter alia, but quartz for our
main appliances, and we predict how we will further expand its application in the economy (Paul Siffert &Eberhard Krimmel, “Silicon: Evolution and Future of a Technology”). It is no less true, however, that silicon may, quite justifiably, be considered another longed-of and domesticated “fat and slow chicken” capable of returning the services of the man with unsuspected malice and… a heart of stone (see Hristo Bukowski, “In the grip of the covert civilization”). Geneticists, so despised by Harari for their arrogance, have not been slow in searching for mankind‘s true past. In „The Seven Daughtersof Eve“, Brian Sykes looks not only at the genotype of the seven European primates (33 primates globally according to him). Sykes attempts in a fictional style to describe the traits, characters and destinies of the European descendants of Eve. There is nothing wrong with mixing styles, genres and competences. It is even natural, especially when talking about Europe, where the term Postmodernism is commonplace. The problem is not in the controversial ability of the authors to use data from other scientific fields or to juggle with popular language on the blade of the academic razor (and vice versa). It is not even in the fact that all authors who are not openly esoteric (a definition, by the way, quite disturbing) seem to be faithful followers of evolutionism. The lack of diversity in viewpoints is an annoying handicap that has always accompanied macro communities, and we live in the so-called global world (another disturbing definition). The real problem is in the astonishing limitation of the goals that are set after (and not before!) investing colossal efforts and often even more colossal resources. For example, genetic research applied to history enables anyone, for a relatively modest sum, to acquire a personal family tree and find out which of the seven daughters of Eve is his ancestor. The reader involuntarily assumes that authors of such texts and projects often rely on attractive titles, while they are perfectly aware of the inaccuracies in their theses even while still while working on them. A particularly eloquent example in this regard is Francis Fukuyama‘s „The End of History and the Last Man“, another world evolutionist bestseller from the end of the last century, but in the field of political science. The real problem with these studies is that they satisfy interests not in terms of individual human destiny, but in the „absolutely true“ past and hypothetical future of the human race. They are aimed at the masses and the mass market, inevitably in line with the requirements of mass taste – that which is freely thriving in all points of the global world.
A similar approach can be seen in certain particularly profound and insightful works, whose authors are definitely reluctant to believe that our past can see through the evolutionary branches of chimpanzees. Such are, for example, „Theology of Mass. Sacramental grounds of Christian life” by Catholic Joseph Ratzinger and the “Lord of the Elements : Interweaving Christianity and Nature“ by Bastiaan Baan. Despite the huge personal and methodological difference between them, famous theologians seek one and the same thing – the possible correct path of human development, i.e. they offer a „mass recipe“ for
These introductory words were needed for two reasons. First, they provide a suitable outline for the context of this book. On the pages which follow, the reader will take a path that, despite its many meanders and switchbacks, is directed forward – in an evolutionist sort of way – to (again) understanding the secret of immortality.
Secondly, the Introduction aims to distinguish “Immortality” from the aforementioned and many other studies; here, as well as further, only authors and titles are quoted – the reference to pages, etc., inevitably limits and manipulates the reader.
When writing not about the history of…, but about the dialectical life-death relationship, there are no “honorary dilettantes” among the authors (as Newton was so condescendingly called for his twenty years of work on “The Amended Chronology”). It would be good if the author was an academic theologian or historian, especially sensitive to the transition states in human life. Such are the theologians quoted, as well as the historian Philip Aries, perhaps the best inves tigator of human reactions to death (“Man before death”, v. 1-2). However, each person is a unique expert in the field of their own fears/hopes around death. Of course, „mass recipes“ for living and meeting death have existed since the time of the Neanderthals. They are offered by myths, then by religions, now by science, and are generally accepted by mass and by faith, and are described in numerous, often multivolume, historical, theological, philosophical, and anthropological works on the notions of the afterlife. This is not the case with „recipes of immortality“. If the book before you does not provide an explanation, it will give rise to certain conjecture on the question why meditations on immortality cannot give any recipes, let alone „mass prognosis and advice for prophylaxis“.
Finally, I would like to thank wholeheartedly a few individuals without whose inspiration, help, criticism and insistence the publication of this book was unlikely to happen any time soon.
The topic is, to say the least, both mandatory and respectful, and its consideration within a small and possibly popular text – a major challenge.
As a historian, I‘ll start at the beginning. It was a great opportunity for me that, in addition to the affection of Professor Hristo Todorov to Kierkegaard I realized in high school that „Death isn‘t such a bad thing...“I am extremely indebted to Prof. Nikolay Shivarov, from whom I learned in my student years how the Sacred Text can be read and understood correctly: this can be achieved in many ways, but only on one condition – one must first learn how not to read the Sacred Text.