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ZeusDaniel 11-12 and Western History

Lorin Friesen, March 2021

One of my projects has been to decipher what the Bible really says about prophecy. I have now analyzed about half of the New Testament in the original Greek, treating entire books as single connected sequences, including all of the traditional prophetic passages. When the New Testament is examined in the original Greek from a cognitive perspective, then a consistent prophetic picture emerges. In addition, this same consistent picture can be found in New Testament books which are not regarded as prophetic. And this prophecy does not just deal with our future but also addresses what for us is now history, but would have been the future for the writers of the New Testament. Most strikingly, Matthew 2-24 provides a detailed prophetic timeline of Western history, stretching from the late Roman empire to the current time. And a similar timeline with a similar level of detail can be found in Revelation 4-11. I should emphasize that these are not handwaving arguments based upon vague parallels. The essay on Revelation is 170 pages long, while the essay on Matthew is 640 pages long.

Daniel 11 contains a similar level of historical detail. It describes Alexander the Great conquering the Middle East followed by the succeeding Seleucid and Ptolemaic kingdoms fighting over the control of Israel. In fact, Daniel 11 describes this historical period with such accuracy that the standard liberal interpretation is that this part of Daniel must have been written after this historical period. Such postdating of prophecy is not possible in the case of Matthew, because it is known with certainty that the book of Matthew was written before the start of Western civilization.

However, only the first 34 verses of Daniel 11 correspond to Jewish history. The rest of the chapter is clearly describing something that has not happened, but presumably will happen in the future. Thus, the standard interpretation is that there is a major historical gap between the beginning of Daniel 11 and the end.

Mental symmetry provides a possible explanation for this gap. In brief, the hypothesis is that it was God’s primary plan for science to emerge in the city of Alexandria before the time of Christ. This almost happened, but did not. In other words, God’s original plan was for Jesus to become incarnate in a world that had discovered science. Because this did not happen, the religion of Christianity had to be established and science came to birth during the Renaissance in Europe. This hypothesis is described in other essays.

The thesis of this essay is that the Jewish fulfillment of Daniel 11-12 went ‘off the track’ and was only partially fulfilled. Therefore, Western society is currently going through a second fulfillment of Daniel 11-12 which will be completed. This essay will begin by examining how the Jewish fulfillment went off the track, and then we will examine how the passage is being fulfilled again by Western civilization. This modern reinterpretation of Daniel 11-12 leads to a prophetic pattern that corresponds to the prophetic sequence described in Matthew and in Revelation.

I should add that the same cognitively natural symbolic interpretation will be used with the book of Daniel that has been used to interpret the New Testament. There is one exception to that statement which lies in the directions North and South. The Greek words for North and South refer to the Northwind and the Southwind. The word South occurs once in the New Testament passages that have been analyzed, in Matthew 12:42 when referring to the Queen of the South. South was interpreted there as emotionally hot, similar to a Latin mentality. The words North and South have specific meanings in Hebrew, and the symbolic interpretation of these two terms will be based upon those meanings. This is an important distinction, because Daniel 11 talks about the king of the South and the king of the North. However, apart from these two terms, this essay will use the same symbolic interpretations that were used in previous essays when looking at the Greek New Testament. It is possible that Matthew 12:42 needs to be revisited, and it is also possible that the directions North and South have different meanings in the Old and new Testaments. (East and West have similar meetings in Hebrew and Greek, referring in both cases to the rising of the sun and the setting of the sun.)

I should add that the Western reinterpretation of Daniel 11 in this essay is Eurocentric. The original purpose of Daniel 11 was for Israel to go through a cognitive sequence that would eventually affect the entire world. Thus, Israel was acting as a bridgehead or trailblazer for the rest of humanity. Similarly, it appears that the purpose of the second fulfillment of Daniel 11 is for Western society to go through a cognitive sequence that will eventually affect the entire world. I know that it is fashionable today to assert that all cultures and histories are equally significant. This essay will not be dealing with all cultures and all histories. But it will be examining the belief that all cultures and all histories are equally significant. And we will attempt to examine how the trailblazing path of Western society will eventually have a global impact.

Table of Contents

The Maccabean Revolt

Daniel 11 and the Maccabees

The Jews of Alexandria

The development of Jewish Thought

Civil War

Philo of Alexandria

Philo, Platonic Forms, and Gnosticism

Daniel 11-12

11:1 The Enlightenment

11:2-4 The French Revolution and Napoleon

11:5-6 Victorian Era

11:7-8 Victorian Empire

11:8-9 Victorian Revivalism

11:10 World War I Mobilization

11:11-12 World War I Trench Warfare

11:13-14 Russian Communism

11:15-16 German Nazism

11:17-19 The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich

11:20 The Cold War

11:21-23 Civil Rights Movement

11:24 The Birth of Deconstructionism

11:25 Violent Protests and the Silent Majority

11:26 Intellectual Triumph of Postmodernism

11:27 Deceptive Integration

11:28 Consumer Technology

11:29-30 Consumer Business

11:31 The Abomination of Desolation

11:32-33 The Emergence of Rational Morality

11:34 Christian Intellectual Growth

11:35 Christian Transformation

11:36 Teacher Overgeneralization and Universal Tolerance

11:37 A Loss of Theology and Femininity

11:38 A New God of Safe Spaces

11:39 The Triumph of Political Correctness

11:40 Rational Backlash versus Institutional Onslaught

11:41 Escaping the Emotional Onslaught

11:42-43 Holiness Invades the Secular Realm

11:44 The Threat of a New Paradigm

11:45 The Fixation and Downfall of Postmodern Thought

12:1 A Great Narrowness and Rescue

12:2 Two Kinds of Awakening

12:3-4 Two Kinds of Reward

12:5-6 A Paradigm Shift to a New Society

12:7 Shattering the Hand of Holy People

12:8-9 The Final Outcome

12:10 Another Period of Cognitive Development

12:11-13 Another Abomination of Desolation


The Maccabean Revolt

The historical correspondence of Daniel 11 ends during the time of the Maccabees. This suggests that the Jewish response during the Maccabean time in some way derailed God’s primary plan. contains an extended history of the Jewish people written in clear language. Claiming that the Jews failed to follow God’s path is a strong statement. Therefore, in order to ensure that I am not rehashing traditional Christian attacks upon Judaism, I will back up this statement by quoting extensively from a Jewish website about Jewish history. describes the crisis that Judaism was experiencing during this era. Setting the scene, Alexandria was the most important city in Judaism at that time. “At its height, Alexandria was the wealthiest, most powerful, most influential and most sophisticated Jewish community. The Talmud describes a synagogue of immense proportions that the community built. Jewish artisans of Alexandria each had their own section in the synagogue: the goldsmiths sat in one section, the silversmiths in another, and the carpenters in a third… the Jews of Alexandria were very proud of their accomplishments and felt that Alexandria was more entitled to the Temple than Jerusalem. In their view, Jerusalem was a very provincial, small, backward city. It was not a city of the world. The situation was similar to the way the Jews of New York sometimes feel vis-a-vis anywhere else in the world.” The mindset of the typical Israeli Jew is statistically different than that of the typical New York Jew, both religiously and politically. In brief, New York Jews tend to be more liberal and less religious than Israeli Jews. A similar distinction existed during the time of the Maccabees between the Jew of Alexandria and the Jew of Jerusalem.

Judaism had a major impact in Alexandria. explains that “The Jews in Alexandria were so influential that the Greek rulers of the Ptolemaic empire became very interested in Jewish customs, ideas and behavior. Consequently, the emperor of the southern kingdom, Ptolemy, commissioned the first translation of the Torah into a foreign language: Greek.” Going the other way, Hellenism had a major impact upon Judaism. “At the same time, the translation gave a dangerous stamp of approval to Greek language and culture. This allowed Greek culture and values to enter the Jewish world. From the time of the Septuagint onward, it was very hard to draw a line and say, ‘We are going to take this amount of Greek culture, but we are not going to take the rest.’ What is going to happen is that they are going to take the rest. They are going to become more Greek than the Greeks, which is a Jewish trait.” And Judaism was in danger of being swept away by Hellenism. “As time passed, more and more Jews not only spoke like Greeks, but took on their customs, attitudes and behaviors, which on so many levels were antithetical to the values of Judaism. Estimates are that a 30-40% of the Jewish population became Hellenists. Most of the upper class was simply swept away by this tide of Hellenist thought… Jews true to Judaism were an increasingly shrinking island awash in a sea of Greek culture. They were victims of a cultural revolution that in a short time would have completely swamped them.” Summarizing, the idea of Jews as a distinct people was being eroded by assimilation, similar to the way that Jews have become assimilated in America. (Jews were also highly assimilated in Germany before the rise of Nazism. And the German Jewish community was described as ‘more German than the Germans’.)

This crisis came to a head when the Seleucids occupied Israel and basically outlawed Judaism. Quoting again from, the Greeks “took the statue of Zeus and mounted it in the courtyard of the Temple. Next, the Greeks banned the observance of the Sabbath on the pain of death. Then, the Talmud records, there was a period of time which lasted a number of decades when the Greek officer in town had the right to ‘live’ with a woman on her wedding night before her husband-to-be. The Greeks also banned circumcision. Whoever circumcised his child was put to death; both child and father were killed. Then the Greeks demanded that altars to the Greek idols be established and that sacrifices be offered on a regular basis in every Jewish town. Finally, the Jewish educational system was entirely interrupted.”

This led to the Maccabean revolt that eventually succeeded in kicking out the Greeks. explains that “The last famous battle was for the fortress of Antonius, which guarded the Temple. When Antonius fell, the Jews came back to the Temple. They shattered the statue of Zeus and cleaned the Temple to the extent that they could. Any priests who worked for the Greeks were sent away or executed… What happened to the Hellenists? Their influence all but collapsed in the wake of the defeat. They would never return again as Hellenists, because the war brought out their true colors as traitors and they lost whatever appeal they could have had to the Jewish people.” Summarizing, the Maccabean revolt successfully brought an end to Jewish assimilation.

In the short term, it looked as if Judaism had been saved. However, describes the long-term impact. First, Simon, the last surviving member of the Maccabean family, became both king and priest. “Simon was not only the king, but, after his brother Jonathan’s death, the High Priest as well. This dual role signified a major historical change, and not a positive one. The leading rabbis told him, in a nice way, that a king of Israel had to come from the tribe of Judah, as the verse says, ‘The staff shall not depart from Judah…’ (Genesis 49:10). Besides the open verse, it was simply not good for a system of checks and balances to have both positions held by one person.” This is a significant cognitive principle. In a similar manner, Catholicism became deeply corrupted in the Middle Ages largely because the Pope acquired secular power and attempted to maintain a physical kingdom. Applying this to the development of science, a Judeo-Christian mindset will naturally lead to the emergence of scientific thought, but this will not happen if one is attempting to use physical force to control the physical world. Saying this more clearly, science believes that the physical universe is governed by universal laws in Teacher thought that are independent of human effort or opinion. This is consistent with the religious idea that the physical universe was created by a universal God in Teacher thought who functions independently of human effort or opinion. However, this parallel will be ruined if humans decide that the rule of God is dependent upon human effort and opinion. And when the Maccabees successfully recaptured the Temple, they declared by their actions that the rule of God depends upon human effort and opinion—and actions speak louder than words.

Looking at this principle from another perspective, the article also claims that Jesus was not a historical figure. “According to the Jewish historical tradition, the founder of Christianity was apparently a compilation of several people. The main persona was dead some 200 years before the first Gospel was written.” This goes beyond claiming that Jesus was not the Jewish Messiah to claiming that Jesus did not exist. Wikipedia addresses this claim. “Nearly all historians accept that Jesus existed, and standard historical criteria have aided in reconstructing his life. Scholars differ on the beliefs and teachings of Jesus as well as the accuracy of the details of his life that have been described in the gospels, but virtually all scholars support the historicity of Jesus and reject the Christ myth theory that Jesus never existed.” Unlike Simon, Jesus did not attempt to set up a physical kingdom; he acted as a priest without attempting to take on the role of king. Therefore, it was natural for him to be rejected by a Judaism that had violated Jewish law by combining the two offices of king and priest. Thus, I suggest that the real Jewish rejection of Jesus did not happen during the life of Jesus. Instead, the real rejection happened during the time of the Maccabees as a result of fundamental choices made by the Jewish leadership—choices which itself declares to be ‘major historical mistakes’.

Second, Simon made an alliance with Rome. In the words of, “His second historical mistake was to make an alliance with Rome, the up-and-coming empire. The Romans wanted a counter-balance against the Greeks to provide them a base for their legions in the Middle East. Indeed, they deployed the Tenth Legion to Israel, which would be infamous for its anti-Semitism and cruelty, and was the primary army the Romans used to destroy the Temple and slaughter the populace.” The Jews of Jesus’ time complained bitterly about Roman domination and eventually rebelled twice against their Roman overlords. But it was the Jews themselves who initially invited the Romans into the land of Israel. Looking at this cognitively, when one is building earthly kingdoms, then one will think in terms of physical allies with physical armies. In contrast, when one is truly following a monotheistic God, then one will view the kingdom of God as a universal kingdom that transcends all human kingdoms. Similarly, scientific thought will only emerge if one looks to unseen understanding for help rather than appealing to human military force.

This was followed by the third mistake, which was to use physical force to gain converts. “The third historical mistake — which will not be Simon’s mistake but his son John (Yochanan) Hyrcanus – was to conquer and convert the tribe Idumeans, a tribe in the south of the Land of Israel, by the point of a sword. Jewish law is very opposed to converting people by force. Those are not the type of converts Judaism is looking for. From those Idumeans will come Herod and a host of other troubles.” Notice how the combination of king and priest has been turned into using the king to enforce the role of the priest.

Summarizing these three mistakes, the Maccabees made the fundamental error of using physical force to deal with a religious problem. The end result was that religion eventually became overshadowed by physical force. With this in mind, let us return to Daniel 11.

Daniel 11 and the Maccabees

Before we continue, I should make some general comments about the Hebrew text. I have gone through about half of the New Testament in the original Greek guided by the definitions given on, and the resulting essays have been posted on the mentalsymmetry website. Biblehub provides Greek definitions given by standard biblical references, including Strongs, Thayers, and Brown-Driver-Briggs. In addition, many of the Greek words contain HELPS word-studies which I found very helpful. While I have examined a number of chapters in the Old Testament, this is the first chapter in the Old Testament that I will be analyzing at the same level that I have analyzed the New Testament. I am seeing several differences. First, Hebrew appears to be less precise than Greek. I have encountered many precise words in Greek that come from economics, the military, or politics. In addition, two or more words are often combined to come up with a more precise term. The words in Hebrew tend to be more generic. In addition, biblehub does not provide any word-studies for the Hebrew words.

Hebrew is based in a root system, in which every root can be formed into a verb in one of seven ways. Generally speaking, the seven verb forms can be divided into the categories of normal, intensive, and causative, a passive version of each of these three, and a reflexive form. The definitions provided in biblehub are organized by roots. Thus, when looking up the meaning of a verb on biblehub, it is important to notice which of the seven verb forms is being used. And when some verb is being repeated, then it is important to note if the form of the verb changes.

Hebrew is also a very compact language, which writes most prepositions by tacking on prefixes and suffixes. For instance, Daniel 11:32 begins with the verb ‘and those who do wickedly against’. This is a single word in the Hebrew, and the Hebrew verb is in the hifil, which is one of the seven ways of forming a verb. Thus, the first step in deciphering the Hebrew word is to use a grammatical ‘scissors’ to detach all of the prefixes and suffixes from the core word. In this case, ‘and’ is indicated by adding the letter ‘vav’ to the beginning of the verb. Then, when one links to the meaning of this verb, one should scroll down to the meaning given for the hifil (or hiph’il) and one should also recognize that the hifil has a causative meaning, which means that some result or behavior is being caused.

I mentioned earlier that the first 34 verses of Daniel 11 correspond with Jewish history. Verse 31 describes the end of sacrifice and the ‘abomination of desolation’. “Forces from him will arise, desecrate the sanctuary fortress, and do away with the regular sacrifice. And they will set up the abomination that makes desolate.” This is normally associated with the desecration of Antiochus IV who stopped the temple sacrifice in Jerusalem, placed the statue of Zeus in the Temple, and sacrificed swine on the altar. I do not see any reason to question this interpretation.

It is after this event that the description in Daniel 11 diverges from Jewish history. This leads to the conclusion that the Jewish error is related to the way that Judaism responded to this desecration. Verse 32 describes two possible responses: “And by smooth words he will turn to godlessness those who act wickedly toward the covenant, but the people who know their God will be strong and take action.”

The first response involves those who ‘act wickedly toward the covenant’. Wickedness describes violence and crime against either civil law, or wickedness in ethical relations. In verse 32, what is being violated is the covenant, which usually refers to the agreement between God and man. This would refer to those who viewed Hellenization as a way of becoming free of Jewish law. The modern equivalent would be those who are attempting to become free of the traditional restrictions of Judeo-Christian law and morality. This group is being ‘turned to godlessness through smooth words’. This phrase is two words in the original Hebrew. Turned to godlessness means ‘to be polluted, or profane’. And smooth words is found once in the Old Testament and means ‘smoothness, flattery’. Looking at this cognitively, a rebellion against Jewish law and culture was being encouraged by a combination of rationalization in Teacher thought and blasphemy in Mercy thought. Looking at a modern equivalent, this would describe using scientific thought as a rationalization to violate traditional boundaries and taboos.

The second response involves ‘people who know their God’. Know focuses upon experiential knowledge and is used in the Old Testament as a euphemism for having sex. ‘Knowing their God’ would refer to some sort of personal internal interaction with a mental concept of God. A person who has an internal concept of God is not mentally devastated when physical holy places are blasphemed. Such a person will be strong, which means ‘to be or grow firm or strong’. The word take action simply means to ‘do, make’. The idea is that a person with a mental concept of God can continue to function in the presence of physical blasphemy. This is different than responding to blasphemy with armed insurrection.

Verse 33 goes further: “And those who have insight among the people will give understanding to the many.” Those who have insight means to ‘cause to consider, give insight, teach’. ‘Among the people’ implies that this insight will come from the average person and not necessarily from the leadership. And the result will be that many will gain understanding. Notice that verse 33 does not say, ‘And those who have weapons will give courage to the masses and lead an insurrection’. On the contrary, verse 33 adds that “they will fall by sword and by flame, by captivity and by plunder for many days.” Fall means ‘to stumble, stagger, totter’. This implies that the understanding will not come easily. ‘By sword’ suggests that those who have understanding will face military opposition. Flame refers to physical heat, but it could also represent psychological heat. Captivity implies that one is being restricted by some military power. And plunder means ‘spoil, booty’, which indicates that one will lose physical wealth. This will continue for some days.

Verse 34 continues, “Now when they fall they will be granted a little help”. Fall again means ‘to stumble, stagger, totter’. And ‘granted a little help’ is simply ‘helped a little’. Looking at this cognitively, stumbling normally leads to failure, but stumbling in the presence of growing Teacher understanding can lead to success. What happens is that existing MMNs that drive behavior fall apart and are replaced by TMNs of understanding. For instance, when I was in the early stages of developing mental symmetry, I would occasionally stumble by losing my temper. However, I discovered to my surprise that I ended up stronger afterwards rather than weaker, because my growing understanding of the mind would ‘reach down’ to put me back together.

Verse 34 adds that this partial help will be a trap, because “many will join with them in hypocrisy.” Hypocrisy means ‘smoothness, slipperiness, flattery, fine promises’. Looking at this cognitively, rational thought is easiest to gain in the objective realm. Thus, when one is making a transition from MMNs of idolatry, tribalism, and culture to TMNs of rational understanding, then one will start by learning how to think rationally with objects and things while still being motivated by inadequate MMNs. For instance, this juxtaposition can be seen in World War I, which combined the rational thinking of modern technology with the subjective motivation of God-and-country. The end result was that millions of people were driven by feelings of duty to get mowed down by machine gun fire and obliterated by artillery.

Verse 35 emphasizes that understanding will be incomplete. “And some of those who have insight will fall, to refine, purge, and cleanse them.” Insight is the same word that was used in verse 34, and fall is the same word for ‘stumble’, also used in verse 34. In other words, rational thought at this point will be inadequate and lead to failure. However, the goal of this failure is to generate personal transformation. Refine means ‘smelt, refine, test’. Cognitively speaking, Perceiver facts and Server sequences only become capable of handling subjective emotions as they are tested under emotional pressure. Purge means to ‘purify, cleanse’. A person with partial understanding is mentally impure. For instance, World War I was driven by a juxtaposition of rational scientific technology and irrational submission to authority. Purifying the mind means ensuring that all parts of the mind are driven by similar mental networks. And cleanse means to ‘make white’. White represents a mind that is driven by the light of an integrated Teacher understanding, because white light combines all the colors of the rainbow. Notice that verse 35 is adding the subjective element to the partial understanding of verse 34. In verse 34, people were learning new techniques; in verse 35, people themselves are becoming transformed.

Verse 35 adds that this will continue “until the end time; because it is still to come at the appointed time.” ‘Until the end time’ indicates a process that needs to be followed through to the conclusion. Appointed time means ‘appointed time, place, or meeting’. The Hebrew is more literally, ‘as far as the time of the end, because yet to the appointed time’. In other words, a process of transformation needs to be completed and the refining, purifying, and making white needs to continue until this process is finished. For instance, I have spent many years working on mental symmetry in relative obscurity. Looking back, I can see that this was necessary to ensure that I myself was transformed by the message of mental symmetry.

In verse 36 the stakes are raised. “Then the king will do as he pleases, and he will exalt himself and boast against every god and will speak dreadful things against the God of gods.” As he pleases means goodwill, favor, acceptance, will’. What is happening cognitively is that people in authority no longer feel themselves limited by any MMNs of culture, accepted behavior, or religion. This describes raw power without any checks or balances. Exalt means ‘to be high or exalted’. This verb is in the reflexive (hitpa’el), which means that those who have status in Mercy thought will feel free to increase their personal status. Magnify means ‘to grow up, become great’. This verb is also in the reflexive. Exalting myself would mean increasing my personal status in Mercy thought, while magnifying myself would indicate increasing my generality in Teacher thought.

This lifting up of personal status and generality will enter the realm of religion. Against means ‘upon, above, over’. ‘Gods’ in the plural would refer to various minor deities that have a combination of Mercy status and Teacher generality. The king is magnifying himself above every god. The ‘God of gods’ would refer to a universal concept of God in Teacher thought that transcends all of the various minor deities. One can tell that a concept of God in Teacher thought is being attacked because Teacher thought uses words and the king is ‘speaking dreadful things’. The word dreadful actually means ‘to be surpassing, or extraordinary’. Thus, the focus is more upon amazing Teacher thought than upon attacking Mercy thought.

Looking at this cognitively, the core element of religious subjective thought involves the TMN of a concept of God. Verse 36 describes core mental networks of religion and theology being overturned by political authority. For instance, many evangelical Christians currently feel (in 2021) that the very existence of Christianity is being threatened by liberal authority. Similarly, a Jew living during the time of Antiochus IV probably would have thought that the very existence of Judaism itself was being threatened.

Verse 36 adds that this blasphemy has to continue. “And he will be successful until the indignation is finished, because that which is determined will be done”. Finished means ‘to be complete, at an end, finished, accomplished’. Indignation comes from a word that means ‘frothing at the mouth’.

In other words, the attack upon God and religion has to continue until Teacher thought has completed some process. Stated cognitively, the Jewish concept of God was emotionally based in MMNs of holiness rooted in the Temple and Temple sacrifice, as well as the Jewish concept of being a chosen race. Similarly, an evangelical concept of God is emotionally based in MMNs of absolute truth based in respect for the Bible, combined with the idea of Christians being chosen by God. These mental networks are currently being blasphemed. However, a religious believer will only break through to a Teacher-based concept of God if existing religious Mercy emotional crutches are removed. And that takes time.

I should emphasize that blasphemy by itself is not sufficient to create a Teacher-based concept of God. That is why verse 36 follows verses 34 and 35. A general Teacher understanding was constructed in the previous verses, and this general understanding will turn into a concept of God when existing images of God are attacked for a sufficient length of time in verse 36. For instance, the current attack on evangelical Christianity is causing the theory of mental symmetry to turn into a concept of God within my mind. If this blasphemy did not happen, then mental symmetry would remain a theory within my mind emotionally supported by a traditional concept of God based in absolute truth. For instance, I just wrote an academic paper that presents the fundamental doctrines of Christianity as a cognitive theory based in an extension of a philosophy of science.

Verse 36 finishes by explaining “because that which is determined will be done”. Determined means ‘strict decision’. And done means to ‘do, make’. In other words, a requirement has to be met. Stated cognitively, the blaspheming of religious MMNs needs to continue until a concept of God is fully based in Teacher thought.

Turning now back to Jewish history, one can see from the description in that this requirement was not met. The blasphemy against Jewish ritual did not continue long enough and was not accompanied by sufficient Teacher understanding to make a full transition to a Teacher-based concept of God. Saying this more bluntly, Judaism still remains partially rooted in Jewish concepts of being a chosen race within a holy land, leading to a continual struggle between the two opposing concepts of a monotheistic God and a tribal god of the Jewish people.

We looked at the response of the Jews living in Israel. When faced with the blasphemy of Antiochus IV, they did not wait for the appointed time or recognize that this indignation had to be finished. Instead, they revolted against the Seleucids in order to preserve Mercy feelings of religious and tribal holiness. Protecting the Temple and its worship and preserving the Jewish nation was more important than constructing an adequate mental concept of God.

This may sound like an anti-Semitic statement. Therefore, it is important to fast-forward a few centuries to the Jewish revolts of AD 70 and AD 132. The Temple in Jerusalem was not just blasphemed, but rather totally destroyed. Jewish women were not just raped. Instead, the Jewish people were massacred at a genocidal level. And Israel was not just occupied, but rather the Jews were kicked out of Israel. What the Jews experienced under Antiochus IV was dreadful, but what they experienced as a result of the failed Jewish revolts was significantly worse.

But Judaism survived the destruction of the Holy Temple, the wholesale massacre of the chosen people, the eviction from the Holy Land, and the rise of a new religion that claimed to replace Judaism. Wikipedia describes the crisis that Judaism faced. “Following the destruction of the Temple in 70 CE and the expulsion of the Jews from the Roman province of Judea, Jewish worship stopped being centrally organized around the Temple, prayer took the place of sacrifice, and worship was rebuilt around rabbis who acted as teachers and leaders of individual communities. The destruction of the Second Temple was a profoundly traumatic experience for the Jews, who were now confronted with difficult and far-reaching questions: How to achieve atonement without the Temple? How to explain the disastrous outcome of the rebellion? How to live in the post-Temple, Romanized world? How to connect present and past traditions?”

Judaism survived this existential crisis by reformulating itself as a religion based in Teacher thought and Teacher words. Quoting from Wikipedia, “The destruction of the Second Temple brought about a dramatic change in Judaism. Rabbinic Judaism built upon Jewish tradition while adjusting to new realities. Temple ritual was replaced with prayer service in synagogues which built upon practices of Jews in the Diaspora dating back to the Babylonian exile. As the rabbis were required to face two shattering new realities, Judaism without a Temple (to serve as the center of teaching and study) and Judea without autonomy, there was a flurry of legal discourse and the old system of oral scholarship could not be maintained. It is during this period that rabbinic discourse began to be recorded in writing. The theory that the destruction of the Temple and subsequent upheaval led to the committing of Oral Law into writing was first explained in the Epistle of Sherira Gaon and often repeated.”

Concluding, Judaism could have continued to follow the path of Daniel 11 and could have made a transition away from MMNs of holiness, ritual, culture, and nationalism towards a new form of Judaism based in Teacher understanding. One can state with certainty that Judaism would have survived this transition because Judaism did make such a transition after AD 70 and this reformulated Judaism has survived until the present day. In contrast, the Jewish response under the Maccabees reinforced Jewish concepts of nationalism and Temple worship which were shattered after the Jewish revolts but continue to affect Judaism to this day.

Looking at this further, the idea of a ‘chosen people’ can be defined either from a Mercy perspective or from a Teacher perspective. A Mercy perspective views a chosen people as a special group in Mercy thought associated with special places, special rituals, and a special people. A Teacher perspective views a chosen people as being chosen to follow some general Teacher sequence in a trailblazing manner that will later be spread to the rest of mankind. Using an analogy, the chosen race is being enrolled in an elite school in order to teach others and be an example to others. Using biblical language, the Jews are supposed to be a ‘light to the nations’. This describes the way that Daniel 11 is being interpreted in this essay, both with respect to Jewish history and with respect to Western history. Jews are aware of this Teacher perspective and have historically fulfilled this Teacher perspective to some extent, but the Teacher viewpoint of ‘being a light to the nations’ has always struggled to coexist with the Mercy viewpoint of being a ‘chosen race’. I should add that this is not a uniquely Jewish problem, because a similar inherent contradiction could be seen during the period of Western colonization. Viewing any crisis, even the Holocaust, as uniquely Jewish will lock the mind into a Mercy perspective and prevent the mind from acquiring a Teacher perspective.

The Jews of Alexandria

We began this essay by referring to the city of Alexandria. Alexandria is in Egypt, which was under the control of the Ptolemaics. Antiochus IV, in contrast, was the king of the Seleucids, who were fighting the Ptolemaics. Many Jews in Israel responded to the oppression of the Seleucids by fleeing to Alexandria. Wikipedia summarizes that “The history of the Jews in Alexandria, Egypt, dates back to the founding of the city by Alexander the Great in 332 BCE. Jews in Alexandria played a crucial role in the political, economic, and religious life of Hellenistic and Roman Alexandria, with Jews comprising about 35% of the city’s population during the Roman Era.” Jews even had control over part of the city. “Under Ptolemaic rule, a separate section of the city was assigned to the Jews, so that they might not be hindered in the observance of their laws by continual contact with the pagan population. This Jewish Quarter was one of the five sections of the city, each named after a letter of the Greek alphabet, with the Jewish quarter being named Delta. During this time, the Jews in Alexandria enjoyed a greater degree of political independence and prominence, serving as the city’s moneylenders, premium merchants and alabarchs.” Wikipedia explains that “An alabarch was a traditionally Jewish official in Alexandria during the Hellenistic and Roman periods, seemingly responsible for taxation and especially customs at the harbor.” describes the grandeur of the synagogue in Alexandria. “Jewish artisans of Alexandria each had their own section in the synagogue: the goldsmiths sat in one section, the silversmiths in another, and the carpenters in a third. Josephus writes that the synagogue was like an amphitheater. It had 8-10,000 seats. It was so large that people in one part could not hear the service taking place in the same room in another part, so in order to answer ‘Amen’ they raised flags and waved.”

Looking at this cognitively, Judaism in Alexandria portrayed the sort of activity that emerges in a group of people that is mentally governed by absolute truth. Concrete technical thought will develop, as indicated by all of the artisans and craftsmen. Absolute truth will also provide the mental stability that is required to conduct business and commerce, as indicated by the Jews becoming moneylenders, merchants, and even acting as alabarchs. The focus upon absolute truth can also be seen in the huge synagogue. More fundamentally, absolute truth requires the presence of a holy book. This existed in the form of the Septuagint, which was a translation into Greek of the Jewish Scriptures performed in Alexandria by Jewish scholars in the third century BC.

What is missing from this description is abstract technical thought. Science did not yet exist, but Alexandria was the world center of proto-scientific thought during this time. Looking at this in more detail, Euclid taught in Alexandria in the third century BC. He wrote a textbook on geometry that was used in Europe until the 19th century. Archimedes studied in Alexandria and came up with many inventions and geometric theorems when he returned to his home in Sicily. Ctesibuis, who also lived in Alexandria during the third century BC, invented the pipe organ, which became a popular instrument during the Roman era. And Eristosthenes, who held the post of librarian at the Museum at Alexandria, calculated the circumference of the earth in 220 BC.

However, I cannot find any evidence of Alexandrian Jews being involved in this scientific thinking. One can state with certainty that they must have been aware of what was happening. summarizes that “Among the practical scientists of Alexandria are men who can be seen as the first alchemists and the first experimental chemists. Their trade, as workers in precious metals, involves melting gold and silver, mixing alloys, changing the colour of metals by mysterious process. These are the activities of chemistry. The everyday items of a chemical laboratory - stills, furnaces, flasks - are all in use in Alexandria.” And we just saw previously that the great synagogue in Alexandria was filled with skilled Jewish artisans. But there is no record of any of these skilled Jews making a mental connection between the Jewish God that they enthusiastically worshiped in their synagogue and the technical skills that they performed during the rest of the week.

Looking back from a scientific viewpoint, it seems incomprehensible that no one would have made this connection. However, one sees the same sort of cognitive disconnect being exhibited today by the typical evangelical Christian. On the one hand, the conservative evangelical proclaims with great vigor that the God of the Bible created the physical universe. On the other hand, the same conservative evangelical maintains a strict mental dichotomy between religious faith and modern scientific technology. I know that this is the case because mental symmetry integrates scientific thought with Christian theology and evangelical Christianity finds no value in mental symmetry.

Cognitively speaking, such a mental split between religion and science is a characteristic of absolute truth. On the one hand, science is guided by general Teacher theories that are independent of Mercy status. On the other hand, absolute truth is ultimately based in the Mercy status of special people and a special book. Such a mental split will only be integrated if one endures religious blasphemy for an extended period of time. Such blasphemy will not destroy religion or eliminate a concept of God if it is accompanied by sufficient understanding. Instead, it will transform absolute truth into universal truth and replace an inadequate concept of God that is based in a specific group of people and a specific book with a more adequate concept of God that is based in general Teacher theories that transcend specific people and specific books. Again, I am not speaking theoretically, because mental symmetry has been used to comprehensively translate Christianity into a cognitive theory of personal transformation based in universal principles of how the mind works. And the end result is more respect for the Bible rather than less, as illustrated by these essays.

Jewish and Greek thought did interact in Alexandria. Quoting from Wikipedia, “Alexander had planted a colony of Jews who had increased in number until at the beginning of the Christian era they occupied two-fifths of the city and held some of the highest offices. The contact of Jewish theology with Greek speculation became the great problem of thought. The Jewish ideas of divine authority and their transcendental theories of conduct were peculiarly attractive to the Greek thinkers who found no inspiration in the dry intellectualism of Hellenistic philosophy. At the same time the Jews had to some extent shaken off their exclusiveness and were prepared to compare and contrast their old theology with cosmopolitan culture. Thus the Hellenistic doctrine of personal revelation could be combined with the Jewish tradition of a complete theology revealed to a special people. The result was the application of a purely philosophical system to the somewhat vague and unorganized corpus of Jewish theology.” Summarizing, Greek thinkers realized that Jewish monotheism could bring Teacher unity to the fragmented ideas of Greek philosophy, while Jewish thinkers realized that a concept of God extended beyond Jewish culture and religion. Thus, we are not discussing some hypothetical that is divorced from historical reality but rather extrapolating from what actually did happen within Alexandria at that time.

The development of Jewish Thought

The attitude of Jewish thinkers can be seen in Aristobulus of Alexandria, a Jewish philosopher who lived in Alexandria during the time that Antiochus IV was carrying out his desecrations in Jerusalem. I have mentioned that absolute truth is based in MMNs of personal authority. For instance, evangelical absolute truth believes that the Bible is true because it was written by holy people who were inspired by God. Stated simply, the Bible is viewed as the source of absolute truth. Mental symmetry, in contrast, suggests that the Bible is an accurate source of universal truth, because it describes cognitive principles in great detail and with great accuracy. Aristobulus followed a mindset of absolute truth, because he argued that all Greek philosophy ultimately came from the absolute truth proclaimed by Moses. One academic review explains that “Aristobulus is the first to claim that the great Greek authorities, from Homer to Plato, were indebted to Moses. Mülke denies that Aristobulus posits any form of natural theology, since the wisdom of the Greeks is derived from the revelation to Moses.” Notice how Aristobulus was attempting to show that all truth was ultimately based in the absolute truth given to the Jews through Moses. Notice also how Aristobulus was not thinking in scientific terms of natural law based in how the physical world functions.

Going further, the goal of Aristobulus was not to discover universal principles, but rather to gain emotional respect in Mercy thought for Judaism. Quoting further from the academic review, “Mülke explains this polemic by the fact that Jews and Egyptians were rivals for Ptolemaic respect. This view nuances the supposed apologetic character of Aristobulus, and of other Jewish writings in Ptolemaic Egypt such as the Letter of Aristeas. Hellenistic Jewish literature was not written exclusively for Jews. It was also a bid for the respect of the Greeks.” The focus upon Mercy status can also be seen in the fact that Aristobulus dedicated his book on apologetics to the Ptolemaic king. “The fact that this book was dedicated to a Ptolemy is important for the political status of the Jews in Egypt in the second century BCE.”

We have looked at the Jewish response to blasphemy in Jerusalem and have seen that Judaism did not follow the path of Daniel 11 by remaining under the blasphemy until the appointed time. We have also examined the state of Jewish thought in Alexandria and we saw that Alexandrian Judaism diverged from the path of Daniel 11 by developing insufficient understanding. Saying this more simply, the Jews in Jerusalem followed tribal religion rather than constructing a universal concept of God, while the Jews in Alexandria followed absolute truth rather than pursuing universal truth. A similar combination can be seen in evangelical Christians today. Those who live within the ‘promised land’ of America tend to follow the ‘tribal religion’ of the Christian nation of America rather than constructing a universal concept of God that applies to the entire world, while evangelical Christians in general have fixated upon the absolute truth of the Bible rather than pursuing universal truth.

We will now see where this led Judaism by quoting from Hellenism emphasized physical existence while downplaying moral law. “There was no reward or punishment, no World-to-Come. If you do God’s will, fine. If you do not, nothing bad will happen to you. God does not reward or punish... The belief in the Hereafter is central to Judaism, which posits a God who cares and who dispenses ultimate reward and punishment in a World-to-Come. A person’s soul does not just end at bodily death.” Looking at this cognitively, Hellenism was like modern science, which acquires its rational thinking by observing the physical world. Both Jewish and Christian religion, in contrast, state that there is more to existence than physical reality. When one uses physical force to defend religious belief, then one is acting as if physical reality is more important than either religious belief or a concept of God. One is asserting that God is incapable of protecting himself, that a concept of God is incapable of rescuing people in physical reality, and that one must appeal to physical reality for assistance. Thus, even though the Maccabees were defending Judaism against Hellenism, the way that they defended Judaism implicitly followed the mindset of Hellenism.

This implicit belief became explicit with the Sadducees. explains that “It was one thing to have those ideas, but it was another thing to initiate a whole movement based on those ideas and call it ‘Judaism.’ Their followers became known as the Sadducees... The three planks of their party platform were: No life hereafter; no reward and punishment. There is no such thing as the Oral Tradition. The priestly class is the ruling class.” In other words, the Maccabees claimed to be protecting Judaism, but they actually used physical force to preserve the physical expression of Judaism, which meant that they acted as if there was ‘no life hereafter; no reward and punishment’. The Sadducees took this implicit behavior on behalf of Judaism and turned it into an explicit system of Judaism.

Looking now at the second and third planks, adds that “The Sadducees started a whole domino effect of human interpretations which took the meaning of the text away from its Divine origins. They had an agenda in doing so. Undermining the authority of the Oral Torah undermined the authority of the Torah sages and the Sanhedrin. That fit in with their next ideological plank, which was that the control of the government should lie not in the hands of the Sanhedrin, but in hands of the priestly class.” Looking at this cognitively, the basic premise of absolute truth is that truth has been revealed by sources of truth with emotional status, and this revelation of truth has been recorded in written form. For instance, Moses received the Torah and this revelation from God was written down in the Jewish Scriptures. If one uses physical force to attempt to restore absolute truth, then this will not restore respect for the original sources of truth. That is because those who use physical force are actually using their personal status to impose truth upon people. They are saying by their actions that they, the military and political leaders, have the right to determine emotional truth. The second and third planks of the Sadducees made this explicit. Summarizing, when absolute truth fades, then any attempt to restore absolute truth will actually end up imposing emotional ‘truth’ through some form of dictatorship.

This was followed by a conservative backlash from the Pharisees. Jewish explains that “The Pharisees were the Torah sages, the traditional Jews. The Hebrew word for Pharisee, Perushim, means to separate, because they separated themselves from the Hellenists and all outside influences. They attempted to remain in a pristine, unique state of Judaism... Josephus and others point out how the majority of the Jews sided with the Pharisees, about 75-80% of them. However, the Sadducees were a very powerful minority. They were part of the wealthy, aristocratic class and strategically placed in government. They also dominated the Temple and served as its priests. In short, they held a disproportionate amount of power.”

Notice exactly what is happening. The underlying problem should have been solved during the initial blasphemy by enduring the blasphemy and pursuing rational thought to the extent of breaking through to a rational Teacher understanding of God and Judaism—as described in Daniel 11. But rational thought was only followed to some extent and expressed itself through physical, military action. Thus, rational thought became equated with the materialistic, godless, Hellenistic mindset. And the Jewish leaders who thought that they were preserving Judaism ended up turning into another form of godless, materialistic Hellenism. In response, the average Jew who still believed in the Torah equated following the Jewish God with rejecting Hellenism and its rational thought.

Precisely the same thing has happened with evangelical Christianity. Western scientific thought initially grew out of Western Christendom. But during the Enlightenment, scientific thought turned into a rejection of non-physical reality. In response, evangelical Christianity emerged during the Romantic era as a backlash against the godless, materialistic thinking of the Enlightenment. And the typical evangelical now equates following God with ‘separating oneself from secular science and all outside influences in order to remain in a pristine, unique state of Bible-believing Christianity’. However, mental symmetry shows that it is possible to reformulate Christianity as a rational theory of cognition which includes both the natural and the supernatural, both the human and the divine.

This Jewish movement away from rational understanding to nationalism and conservative dogmatism impacted the way that Jews were viewed by Greeks. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy summarizes that “In the fragments of Greek and Roman writers carefully collected by Menahem Stern (1974), we find two kinds of Greek reactions towards Judaism. In the earlier period, they received some sympathy from philosophers; Theophrastus, the main disciple of Aristotle, writes in a famous fragment that Jews are ‘philosophers by race’, saying about them: ‘they converse with each other about the deity, and at night-time they make observations of the stars, gazing at them and calling on God by prayer.’” But this view changed after the rise of the Maccabees: “From the end of the second century BCE, however, many philosophers were active propagandists for antisemitism… For these men, the Jews were a very superstitious nation, blemished by strange habits and strong animosity towards foreigners.” One can see a similar shift in the secular view of evangelicals. During the late 20th century, evangelicals were viewed as strange and idealistic, but also as worthy of some respect. This is not the case today, because most comments on the Internet describe evangelicals as hypocritical, irrational, antagonistic, and dangerous.

Continuing in this vein, complains that “Later, the Christian Gospels would paint some very negative images of the Pharisees, which would become embedded in Western and World culture. However, they were the great leaders of Israel. Hillel, Rabbi Akiva and others that even many in the non-Jewish world recognize as the epitome of benevolent, sagely people were Pharisees through and through.”

If the goal is to restore a Judaism that is based in absolute truth, then this is a valid complaint. But if the goal of Jesus was to move beyond absolute truth to a rational Teacher understanding of God and religion, then the Pharisees would have been enemies of Jesus. I say this from personal experience, because I have found that fundamentalist Christians are diametrically opposed to mental symmetry. This has nothing to do with doctrine or with belief in the Bible, because mental symmetry leads to standard Christian doctrine and great respect for the Bible. Instead, the core problem is that mental symmetry is saying the right thing for the wrong reason. I have found again and again that the mindset of absolute truth matters more to the fundamentalist Christian than the content of the Bible.

Going further, a mindset of absolute truth will naturally be accompanied by a mindset of religious self-denial. That is because personal status is something relative. Perceiver thought within my mind will only become—and remain—overwhelmed into believing absolute ‘truth’ if I feel that the sources of truth have much greater emotional status than I do. The end result is that the interpretation of a holy book will become subtly twisted by an attitude of self-denial, and denying self and ‘suffering for God’ will be read into the holy book, even when this is not present in the actual content. This self-denial can be seen in the gezeriah (fence laws) of Judaism, which make biblical rules more strict in order to avoid inadvertently violating Torah. The problem with this is that the Bible has been written very carefully to be consistent with Teacher understanding, and the fence laws cover up the shape of the Jewish laws, making it more difficult to gain Teacher understanding. This explains why Jesus attacked the Pharisees for adding human restrictions to divine law. Similarly, I have found when analyzing the New Testament from a cognitive perspective that it is critical to note precisely what the biblical text says, and not to add or subtract from this meaning.

Civil War

Returning to Jewish history, the conflict between Pharisees and Sadducees eventually led to civil war. explains: “There were a number of matters that brought the situation to a head. The most horrific example took place on Sukkot, one of the pilgrimage festivals when hundreds of thousands of Jews from all over the land flocked to Jerusalem and filled the Temple courtyard. During the height of the most joyous part of the festival, Alexander Jannaeus — as the High Priest — performed a key part of the ceremony in an openly Sadducee way. It was an intentionally provocative public declaration on behalf of the Sadducees. He well knew that his audience was overwhelmingly made up of Pharisees. They responded by pelting him with the citron fruits used as part of the observance of the festival. In his wrath, he ordered his non-Jewish mercenary soldiers into the Temple to slaughter at will and they butchered 6,000 Jews that day. Josephus, in recounting it more than a century and a half later, recounts how the troughs in the Temple ran red with blood. It was now open civil war. Alexander Jannaeus attempted to arrest the last of the Pharisee leaders. Most escaped. However, those he caught were often executed via crucifixion, which he learned from the Romans. In one incident, he nailed 800 people to crucifixes in one day along the road outside Jerusalem and slew their wives and children in front of them as they slowly died on the crucifix. Desperate, the Pharisees appealed to Demetrius, leader of the Syrian Greeks, to help them defeat Alexander Jannaeus. He was only too happy to comply.”

Summarizing, the Sadducees used their official status to impose liberal religion upon the more conservative population. When the people rebelled, the leaders used military force to suppress this rebellion. The population led by the conservative Pharisees then appealed to outside forces for military help. One can see a parallel in recent Western history, especially in the United States. Liberal academia has used its official status to impose liberal religious thought upon a more conservative population through the control of education. When conservative Evangelicals rebelled against ‘secular humanism’, then liberals used government power to enforce their control of education and secular society. In response, conservative evangelicals have attempted to wrest control of academia and government from the liberals.

The Jewish civil war was initially resolved by creating a division between religious and secular. Quoting from, “both sides came to compromise: Alexander Jannaeus would run the government, but the Pharisees would run the people. He would take care of secular matters and they would take care of religious matters... In the last 10 years of his life the Jewish kingdom was the largest it had been since the time of Solomon. The economy and the religious life of the people were strong. It was a Golden Age, albeit only for 10 years.” Summarizing, Israel experienced a brief golden age. Similarly, America continue to prosper after the rise of the religious right in the 1980s, even though society was split between Democrats, who tended to be liberal, educated, and secular, and Republicans, who tended to be conservative, Bible believing, and religious. However, this was not a stable juxtaposition, both in Israel and in current America.

The Jewish civil war resumed in 65 BC. The civil war had three striking characteristics. First, the Edomites who had been forcibly converted to Judaism achieved military prominence in the Jewish army. Quoting from, “A couple of generations earlier the Idumeans had been forcibly converted, against the will of the rabbis, and now it would come back to haunt the Jewish people. Antipater was as talented an administrator as he was ambitious. He is the one who really stirred the pot and convinced Hyrcanus that he had a chance to become the king again. Always scheming, he organized Hyrcanus’ army – but one that was loyal to him, bringing in mercenaries and organizing the offer corps out of his own Idumean compatriots.” This was significant, because Antipater was the father of Herod, the Edomite who became the king of the Jews. Thus, using physical force to convert neighbors to Judaism eventually caused Judaism itself to be physically ruled by the descendents of these converts. Saying this another way, the Jews thought that they were converting the Edomites, but the Edomites ended up corrupting and controlling the Jews, because the Jews implicitly converted to the method used by their neighbors when they used force to convert their neighbors. Looking at a modern example within evangelical Christianity, evangelicals attempted to convert the secular world through the Seven Mountains of Culture. But what happened in practice is that in each of these areas, Christianity ended up being corrupted by secular thought.

Second, the rituals of Judaism were maintained during the civil war, while making a mockery of Jewish religion. explains that “On the Temple Mount itself was the Fortress of Antonius, which was a virtually impregnable fortress. Whoever controlled it controlled the Temple area. Aristobulus and the remnants of his army now took up residence there. As long as they held this fortress they were capable of repelling all attacks and holding out for a long time. As strange as it seems, despite their animosity toward each other, the two sides made an agreement to make sure that the twice-daily sacrifice was offered. Every day, the army on the outside would send up the necessary sheep to be slaughtered. The priests inside the Temple, who were neutral, continued doing all their daily deeds. The siege lasted months and showed no sign of ending. One day, an advisor convinced Hyrcanus to send up a pig instead of a sheep... The Hasmoneans had initiated their rebellion when the Greeks forced Jews to a sacrifice pig to their gods and now their descendants were killing each other and sending up a pig to the Temple!”

Looking at this cognitively, when all content becomes questioned and belittled, then what survives is ritual and methodology. That is because Server confidence can always be maintained by choosing to perform some set of actions. The Jews may have been killing each other in civil war, but the rituals of Jewish Temple worship were still being maintained. One can see a similar parallel in the evangelical Christian response to Donald Trump and the covid pandemic. On the one hand, most evangelicals strongly supported Donald Trump, even though the character of Donald Trump utterly violates standards of Christian morality. Giving just one example, Satan is described in John 8:44 as a father of lies who has no truth in him. Similarly, Trump lied habitually and instinctively, making approximately 30,000 false or misleading claims during his presidency. On the other hand, many evangelicals saw the shutting down of church services in order to limit the spread of the covid virus as a frontal attack upon Christianity, indicating that maintaining the rituals of church was of primary importance.

Third, the Jewish civil war was eventually brought to a close by appealing to the Romans for help. Wikipedia explains that “Pompey had been asked to intervene in a dispute over inheritance to the throne of the Hasmonean Kingdom, which turned into a war between Hyrcanus II and Aristobulus II. His conquest of Jerusalem, however, spelled the end of Jewish independence and the incorporation of Judea as a client kingdom of the Roman Republic.” The Jews of Jesus’ time complained bitterly about being under the domination of Rome. But it was the Jews’ own fault that the Romans were in charge because they had invited the Romans to intervene. Similarly, I suggest that evangelical Christians have primarily themselves to blame for their current predicament, because the real problem with evangelical Christianity is not the secular world controlling Christianity, but rather evangelical Christians maintaining a split mindset between a pharisaical side that proclaims absolute biblical truth in a condescending manner and a Sadducee-like side that claims to be Christian while acting as if God and heaven do not exist.

That brings us to the time of Christ. One can see why the Jews ended up rejecting Jesus as Messiah. First, he reestablished the division between priest and king by maintaining that ‘my kingdom is not of this world’ (John 18:36). Second, he internalized Jewish law. One can see this in the Sermon on the Mount, which goes beyond Mosaic law to look at underlying mindset and motivation. Third, he predicted that the Temple and its rituals would be destroyed. This is explicitly mentioned in Matthew 24, and was one of the accusations brought against Jesus in his trial (Matt. 26:61). Fourth, He violated the idea of a transcendent God by claiming that His actions expressed the nature of God. (John 10:31-38). I have attempted to show in the previous pages that this rejection did not emerge spontaneously during the time of Jesus. Instead, it developed over the centuries as a result of the Maccabees diverging from the prophetic path of Daniel 11. The Maccabees refused to allow Judaism to become a kingdom that was not of this world. The Pharisees and the Sadducees did not internalize Jewish law but rather focused upon physical adherence and political prominence. The Jews regarded maintaining the Temple and its ritual as all-important, while downplaying moral character. Summarizing, the Jews rejected the idea that humans could reflect the character of God primarily because the Jews themselves followed a path of history that chose to stop reflecting the character of God.

And I suggest the same statements can be made about most evangelical Christians. They think that they are defending God and Christianity, but evangelical Christendom has responded to secular thought primarily by becoming a kingdom of this world rather than a kingdom of the unseen God, by focusing upon political power and social status, by downplaying internal character and personal transformation, and by replacing following the character of God with being popular before people. I am not suggesting that all evangelical Christians have followed this path, but I think that one can conclude that evangelical Christianity as a movement has chosen to follow this path. And in the same way that Judaism as a whole rejected Jesus as their Messiah, so I fear that when God does step in to intervene in human society, then evangelical Christendom will respond by rejecting this divine help as the work of Satan.

I should add that I wrote these parallels between Jewish history and current evangelical Christendom before going through Daniel 11 in detail. The application of Daniel 11 to current society will be discussed more carefully later in his essay.

Philo of Alexandria

We will now look in greater detail at the fourth point of disconnecting human behavior from divine character, because it can be seen in the philosophy of Philo of Alexandria, a Jewish philosopher who lived in Alexandria during the time of Christ.

Philo asserted that God transcends all physical reality. Quoting from Wikipedia, “Philo affirms a transcendent God without physical features or emotional qualities resembling those of human beings. In Philo, God exists beyond time and space and does not make special interventions into the world because he already encompasses the entire cosmos. Philo’s notion is even more abstract than that of the monad of Pythagoras or the Good of Plato. Only God’s existence is certain, no appropriate predicates can be conceived.”

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy puts it this way. “Philo states in many places that God’s essence is one and single, that he does not belong to any class or that there is in God any distinction of genus and species. Therefore, we cannot say anything about his qualities ‘For God is not only devoid of peculiar qualities, but he is likewise not of the form of man”; he ‘is free from distinctive qualities’. Strictly speaking, we cannot make any positive or negative statements about God.”

Historically speaking, “Philo is also considered the founder of negative theology in the history of monotheistic faith. Given the association of his faith with contemporary forms of Skepticism, he was also the founder of at least a kind of fideism, i.e., a doctrine in which faith is the foundation of all essential truths.”

Looking at this cognitively, this describes a concept of God that is based in Teacher overgeneralization. Teacher thought is naturally driven to make sweeping statements, which may then become limited by Perceiver facts. The ultimate sweeping statement is to state that God ‘is one and single’, and this sweeping overgeneralization can be maintained as one long as one asserts that God ‘exists beyond time and space and does not make special interventions into the world’.

This summarizes the standard view of God within present day Judaism, because Judaism defines monotheism as belief in an overgeneralized concept of God. Quoting from Wikipedia, “In the philosophy of Maimonides and other Jewish-rationalistic philosophers, there is little which can be known about the Godhead, other than its existence, and even this can only be asserted equivocally… The ‘knowability’ of the Godhead in Kabbalistic thought is no better than what is conceived by rationalist thinkers. As Jacobs (1973) puts it, ‘Of God as God is in Godself—Ein Sof—nothing can be said at all, and no thought can reach there.’” Notice how both rational Jewish philosophy and mystical Jewish Kabbalah are basically restating the concept of God described by Philo. Kabbalah was discussed in a previous essay.

But one does not find this kind of God portrayed in the Jewish Bible. Instead, the stories of the patriarchs describe people discovering attributes of God as they chose to behave in a manner that was consistent with the character of God. Similarly, the Jewish Bible describes the story of God leading and guiding the Jewish people through human history. This leads to a schizophrenic concept of God. In the words of Wikipedia, “Jews believe that ‘God can be experienced’ but also that ‘God cannot be understood,’ because ‘God is utterly unlike humankind (as shown in God’s response to Moses when Moses asked for God's name: ‘I Am that I Am’).” But if the thinking of God is ‘utterly unlike humankind’, then how could God think about guiding the Jews through human history? If God is incomprehensible, then this makes the Jewish Bible a farce, because the Jewish writers are only pretending to describe a God who is only pretending to guide the Jewish people.

In contrast, John 1:1 describes Jesus as ‘the Logos’ or ‘word’ and states that “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy explains that “The term Logos was widely used in the Greco-Roman culture and in Judaism. Through most schools of Greek philosophy, this term was used to designate a rational, intelligent and thus vivifying principle of the universe.” Looking at this cognitively, a concept of incarnation emerges when abstract technical thought becomes connected with concrete technical thought. Abstract technical thought is based in precise definitions. Hence, the association of incarnation with ‘the word’. The primary example of this is science, which uses the precise definitions of mathematics to describe the ‘rational, intelligent principles of the universe’.

The Stanford Encyclopedia clarifies how the Greek concept of Logos differed from Philo’s concept. “For the Stoics, logos was equally reason (individual and universal), nature, and God, while for Philo, logos is not ultimate reality but merely what we can see and understand of God, who is Himself very far from human comprehension. In Stoicism, logos is God; in Philo it corresponds to his specific doctrine of the dunameis, the powers of God who created the world and governs it.” Notice how the Stoics are equating the Logos of abstract technical thought with a concept of God in Teacher thought. Similarly, John equates the Logos with a concept of God in John 1:1, and science equates the abstract technical thinking of mathematics with the universal laws of nature in Teacher thought. Philo, in contrast, recognized the Logos of abstract technical thought but then used Teacher overgeneralization to form a transcendent concept of God that was totally separate from the Logos. In other words, Philo concluded that the real God was not guiding the Jewish people, and that Biblical stories of God guiding the Jews throughout history had nothing to do with the real God.

The vast majority of Christians do something similar. Rational thought will be used to analyze peripheral Christian doctrines, but core doctrines of Christianity will be regarded as incomprehensible mysteries that transcend human comprehension. However, I have discovered that mental symmetry can be used to explain even core Christian doctrines. Saying this another way, a cognitive theory that describes how humans comprehend can be used to analyze biblical doctrine. But even though the average Christian asserts that God revealed himself through Jesus in human form, and even though most Christians are acquainted with John 1:1, my experience is that the average Christian has not explored what it means for Jesus to be God in human flesh.

One could see a similar ambivalence in Philo. Wikipedia explains that “Although, as shown above, Philo repeatedly endeavored to find the Divine Being active and acting in the world, in agreement with Stoicism, yet his Platonic repugnance to matter predominated, and consequently whenever he posited that the divine could not have any contact with evil, he defined evil as matter, with the result that he placed God outside of the world. Hence he was obliged to separate from the Divine Being the activity displayed in the world and to transfer it to the divine powers, which accordingly were sometimes inherent in God and at other times exterior to God.” Notice the struggle between ‘a rational God who intervenes in human reality’ and ‘a transcendent God of overgeneralization who has nothing to do with physical reality’.

Philo, Platonic Forms, and Gnosticism

Looking at the bigger picture, what began as a choice with the Maccabees turned into a core doctrine of Philo. The Jews during the time of the Maccabees chose to use human force to preserve the distinction between secular physical reality and the holiness of Temple ritual, rather than allowing the blasphemy to transform their concept of God. By the time of Philo, this had turned into a concept of God in Teacher thought that had nothing to do with the physical reality of human existence.

Looking at this from a personal perspective, I have attempted for years to follow a dual path of rationally understanding the mind in Teacher thought while simultaneously allowing this understanding to guide my personal behavior in Mercy thought. I have done this because I know that separating research from personal application will cause my research to become dead-ended in self-deception. The end result of following this path is the mental concept of a God who intervenes in human history—as described in this and similar essays.

Separating God from rational thought will also affect one’s concept of Platonic forms. Wikipedia describes how Philo viewed Platonic forms: “Philo used the term Logos to mean an intermediary divine being, or demiurge. Philo followed the Platonic distinction between imperfect matter and perfect Form, and therefore intermediary beings were necessary to bridge the enormous gap between God and the material world. The Logos was the highest of these intermediary beings, and was called by Philo ‘the first-born of God.’” Notice the unbridgeable gap within Philo’s mind between imperfect human reality and Platonic forms of perfection.

Mental symmetry suggests that Platonic forms emerge in the following manner: Using the example of a circle, a person encounters round objects in the physical environment leading to Perceiver facts about roundness. Teacher thought then comes up with a general theory that summarizes the essence of roundness. This leads in Mercy thought to the imaginary image of the ideal circle which is rounder and more perfect than any circle in real life. What matters is that Platonic forms are an idealization of physical reality, and these idealizations can act as motivation to make reality more like Platonic forms. Thus, Platonic forms will always be more perfect than reality, but Platonic forms also grow in perfection as Teacher understanding matures and the gap between Platonic perfection and imperfect reality can be minimized by continually applying what one understands.

Looking at this from another perspective, if one builds Teacher understanding by analyzing a holy book that is viewed as having nothing to do with physical reality, then the resulting Platonic forms will also have nothing to do with physical reality, and one will end up with a concept of Platonic forms that is like that taught by Philo—or like the typical Christian—who views heaven as a place of Platonic perfection that has nothing to do with imperfect human reality. Physics and engineering illustrate what it means to treat Platonic forms as idealizations of physical reality, because the first step in using physics to analyze some real situation is to replace the physical situation with an idealized and simplified version of this situation that can be analyzed by mathematical equations. For instance, objects may be represented as point masses, friction may be ignored, gravity may be treated as a constant, and so on. Engineering is continually moving between messy reality and idealized mathematical representations of reality.

Putting this together, I suggested at the beginning of this essay that science should have emerged in Alexandria, but did not. We have now seen several cognitive reasons why science did not emerge. 1) Science connects physical reality with Platonic forms. A fundamental religious doctrine of Philo was that reality has nothing to do with Platonic forms. 2) Science teaches through exemplars, which means performing Server actions that reflect general Teacher understanding. The Maccabees followed a path that connected their Server actions with physical kingdoms, physical rituals, and physical holiness rather than allowing their actions to be guided by a Teacher understanding of God. 3) Science equates the abstract technical thinking of mathematics with the general Teacher laws of the universe. Philo divorced the Logos of abstract technical thought from his Teacher-based concept of God. 4) The Jews associated rational thought with the hellenistic, materialism of the Sadducees, and associated following God with the separatism and revealed truth of the Pharisees. Science, in contrast, builds its separatist view of academic truth upon a rational, materialistic analysis of physical reality. 5) The Jews tried to prove that their source of absolute truth had greater Mercy status than the revealed truth of the Greeks. Science, in contrast, comes up with theories in Teacher thought that are more general than the common sense of the average person.

Moving ahead, many historians have suggested that there is a connection between the religious mindset of Judaism, as exemplified by Philo, and gnosticism. Early Christianity had a major struggle with gnosticism, and eventually declared it to be heresy. For instance, the Jewish virtual library summarizes that “Gnosticism designates the beliefs held by a number of nonorthodox Christian sects flourishing in the first to second centuries C.E., which developed mystical systems of philosophy based on the gnosis (Gr. ‘knowledge’) of God. These systems were syncretic, i.e., mixtures of pagan magic and beliefs from the Babylonian and Greek world as well as from the Jewish. Judaism made an important contribution to the conceptions and the developments of gnosticism… Jewish influence on gnosticism is also evident in the use of names, concepts, and descriptions taken from the Hebrew or Aramaic… In addition to these contributions unwittingly and unintentionally made by Judaism to gnosticism, there existed in Judaism itself, at the end of the Second Temple period, emotional and intellectual attitudes which were close to the spiritual world of gnosticism. It is possible that these had a more direct influence on the emergence of gnosticism or, at least, that they served as seeds for a few of its ideas.”

Looking at this in more detail, notice the similarity between Philo’s view of the perfect God and imperfect physical creation mentioned a few paragraphs earlier and the gnostic view described in Wikipedia: “Viewing material existence as flawed or evil, Gnostic cosmogony generally presents a distinction between a supreme, hidden God and a malevolent lesser divinity (sometimes associated with the Yahweh of the Old Testament) who is responsible for creating the material universe. Gnostics considered the principal element of salvation to be direct knowledge of the supreme divinity in the form of mystical or esoteric insight.”

Going further, Wikipedia reports that “Contemporary scholarship largely agrees that Gnosticism has Jewish Christian origins, originating in the late first century AD in nonrabbinical Jewish sects and early Christian sects. Many heads of gnostic schools were identified as Jewish Christians by Church Fathers, and Hebrew words and names of God were applied in some gnostic systems.” And “Quispel sees Gnosticism as an independent Jewish development, tracing its origins to Alexandrian Jews, to which group Valentinus was also connected.”

Valentinus “was the best known and, for a time, most successful early Christian gnostic theologian.” Wikipedia adds that “Valentinus was ‘born a Phrebonite’ in the coastal region of Egypt, and received his Greek education in Alexandria, an important and metropolitan early center of Christianity… In Alexandria, Valentinus may have heard the Gnostic philosopher Basilides and certainly became conversant with Hellenistic Middle Platonism and the culture of Hellenized Jews like the great Alexandrian Jewish allegorist and philosopher Philo.”

Summarizing, the first major theological struggle faced by early Christianity was breaking free of the path that had been blazed by Jewish philosophy as a result of diverging from the plan of God. This struggle is discussed in the essay on Revelation 4-11.

Daniel 11-12

We have looked at a critical part of Daniel 11 from a historical perspective and have attempted to analyze why the Jews diverged from God’s initial plan. We have also noticed a number of parallels between the Jewish response during the time of the Maccabees and the current response of evangelical Christians. We will now look at the entirety of Daniel 11-12 from a prophetic viewpoint and show that it provides a summary of modern Western history. In other words, Daniel 11 was only partially fulfilled in Jewish times, but if one interprets Daniel 11 from a cognitive perspective, then one can see that it is being completely fulfilled today. This cognitive interpretation of Daniel 11-12 will be similar to the cognitive interpretation that has been done of Matthew 2-24 as well as Revelation 4-11, and the symbolism will be interpreted in the same manner.

(As I was editing this essay, I noticed that there are significant parallels between the rest of Daniel 11 and the path of Jewish society in the second and first centuries BC. However, even if this is the case, the main point still remains, which is that the positive response of Judaism was insufficient to discover science and also insufficient to develop the concept of a Jewish Messiah that was compatible with the person of Jesus. This meant that the sequence of Daniel 11 had to be carried out another time to completion.)

The first step in analyzing the recapitulation of Daniel 11 is to establish the historical context.

The end of chapter 10 talks about three princes: Persia, Greece, and Michael. The word prince means ‘chieftain, chief, ruler, official’. One can interpret this as the ruling mindset of some society. It is also possible that real beings exist within the nonphysical realm which embody these ruling mindsets. Persia may come from the word ‘paras’, which means ‘to split, or divide’. This may be related to the word ‘pharisee’. The etymology of Greece (which is ‘Yavan’ in Hebrew) is uncertain. Michael means ‘who is like God?’ In 10:21-22, the angel who was sent to give an answer to Daniel said that he had to fight the prince of Persia to get to Daniel, that the prince of Persia will be replaced by the prince of Greece, and that his only solid help came from Michael the prince of Daniel.

A possible cognitive explanation emerges if one connects Greece with scientific thought. Historically speaking, science was preceded by the mental dividing and pharisaical mindset of absolute truth. This connection of Persia with absolute truth is backed up by Daniel 6:8, where the followers of the king refer to ‘the law of the Medes and Persians, which does not pass away’. Daniel, which means ‘God is my judge’, is attempting to sort through this mindset of absolute truth in order to understand what God is actually doing. This is described in 10:12-14; the angel says that Daniel has ‘set his heart on understanding and humbly before God’ and he tells Daniel that he has come to explain what will happen in the future. In verse 24, the angel talking to Daniel refers to Michael as ‘your prince’. In other words, Daniel is asking the question ‘Who is like God?’; he is bringing structure to his understanding by comparing the situation with what he knows about the character of God.

For instance, this describes the type of thinking that I have been attempting to use. I live during a time during which absolute truth has faded and been replaced by scientific thought. I have used mental symmetry to construct a concept of God in Teacher thought based upon the pursuit of mental wholeness, and I am trying to understand where society is heading, guided by my understanding of cognitive principles. Like the messenger sent to answer Daniel, I find that coming up with the answer means sorting through a lot of absolute truth.

The Enlightenment 11:1

Europe was going through a similar transition during the Enlightenment. Medieval society had been governed by a mindset of scholasticism, which was based in the absolute truth of the Bible, the ancient Greek authors, and other approved experts. The Enlightenment was attempting to sort through this absolute truth, guided by the new rational Teacher understanding of scientific thought. (This transition is discussed in detail in the essay on the book of Matthew.) One can also interpret Hellenism as a similar sort of transition.

Before we begin, I should point out that we will be quoting from the NASB and using any literal translations given in footnotes. In addition, any words written in italics in the NASB will also be written in italics in the quotes in this essay. The NASB uses italics to indicate words that are not in the original Hebrew text which have been added to the English translation to make the text flow smoother. All words in italics will be ignored when interpreting the text.

Verse 1 begins: “In the first year of Darius the Mede, my standing up was a strengthener and a protection for him.” Darius is a title that means ‘lord’. Year comes from a word that means ‘to change’. Mede probably comes from a word that means ‘central, in the middle’. ‘Strengthener’ is an accurate translation and protection means ‘a place or means of safety’.

The Enlightenment was a time of juxtaposition. Societally and politically it was a time of relative stability, in which existing and social structures became entrenched. Monarchy became supported by the doctrine of the divine right of kings. The religious wars between Protestant and Catholic resulted in the stalemate of the peace of Westphalia, which basically stated that each kingdom had the right to remain either Catholic or Protestant. Meanwhile, scientific thought was in its infancy. Scientists were using rational thought to come up with specific Teacher theories but Isaac Newton had not yet come along with his unifying general theory of motion.

Using the symbolic language of verse 1, a new form of rational thinking had acquired lordship in Teacher thought, and this new form of thought was regarded as central and mainstream—as shown by the term ‘Age of Enlightenment’. Wikipedia summarizes that this “was an intellectual and philosophical movement that dominated the world of ideas in Europe during the 17th and 18th centuries. The Enlightenment included a range of ideas centered on the sovereignty of reason and the evidence of the senses as the primary sources of knowledge and advanced ideals such as liberty, progress, toleration, fraternity, constitutional government and separation of church and state.”

Wikipedia describes the centrality of this new way of thinking: “Enlightenment thought was deeply influential in the political realm. European rulers such as Catherine II of Russia, Joseph II of Austria and Frederick II of Prussia tried to apply Enlightenment thought on religious and political tolerance, which became known as enlightened absolutism. Many of the main political and intellectual figures behind the American Revolution associated themselves closely with the Enlightenment.” Notice how Enlightenment thinking became closely associated with the absolute truth of existing monarchies.

The thinking of the Enlightenment was mentally supported by the general premise that ‘God is my judge’. This can be seen in the philosophy of deism, which was popular during the Enlightenment. Quoting from Wikipedia, deism “is the philosophical position that rejects revelation as a source of religious knowledge and asserts that reason and observation of the natural world are sufficient to establish the existence of a Supreme Being or creator of the universe… During the Age of Enlightenment, especially in Britain and France, philosophers began to reject revelation as a source of knowledge and to appeal only to truths that they felt could be established by reason alone.” Deism is an incomplete philosophy because it pits natural revelation against absolute truth. But it did provide intellectual support for the initial development of scientific thought. And it can be summarized as being supported by ‘God is my judge’ because it pursued rational thinking that was ruled by a concept of God in Teacher thought.

Verse 2 begins, “And now I will tell you the truth”. This statement makes sense in the light of the Enlightenment and deism. The word truth comes from a word that means ‘to confirm, support’. As Wikipedia explains, “Enlightenment deism consisted of two philosophical assertions: (a) reason, along with features of the natural world, is a valid source of religious knowledge, and (b) revelation is not a valid source of religious knowledge.” Notice the focus upon confirming and supporting verbal truth.

Verse 2 continues, “Behold, three more kings are going to arise for Persia.” Arise is more literally ‘stand’. Thus, this new form of thinking will be supported by three more kings. Notice the inherent contradiction, because kings, who are sources of truth, are standing for a form of rational thinking that rejects sources of truth. This contradiction can be seen in enlightened absolutism. Wikipedia explains that “Enlightened absolutism refers to the conduct and policies of European absolute monarchs during the 18th and early 19th centuries who were influenced by the ideas of the Enlightenment.” I am not exactly sure who the ‘three kings’ represent, but if this refers to actual monarchs, then the best candidates would be Frederick the Great of Prussia, Catherine II of Russia, Charles III of Spain, and possibly Joseph II of Austria.

Verse 2 adds, “Then a fourth will gain far more riches than all of them.” (The NASB puts words in italics to indicate that they are not in the original Hebrew text. We will be ignoring those words.) This probably refers to France. During the Enlightenment, France was the number one country in Europe. And the Enlightenment reached its height in France. Quoting from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, “The heart of the eighteenth century Enlightenment is the loosely organized activity of prominent French thinkers of the mid-decades of the eighteenth century, the so-called ‘philosophes’(e.g., Voltaire, D’Alembert, Diderot, Montesquieu). The philosophes constituted an informal society of men of letters who collaborated on a loosely defined project of Enlightenment exemplified by the project of the Encyclopedia.” Looking at personal riches, the goal of the French Enlightenment was to improve physical well-being: “D’Alembert, a leading figure of the French Enlightenment, characterizes his eighteenth century, in the midst of it, as ‘the century of philosophy par excellence’, because of the tremendous intellectual and scientific progress of the age, but also because of the expectation of the age that philosophy (in the broad sense of the time, which includes the natural and social sciences) would dramatically improve human life.”

And the French Encyclopédie was an unprecedented gathering of intellectual wealth, including the knowledge required to generate physical wealth. Wikipedia summarizes that “the Encyclopédie was a vast compendium of knowledge, notably on the technologies of the period, describing the traditional craft tools and processes… These articles applied a scientific approach to understanding the mechanical and production processes, and offered new ways to improve machines to make them more efficient. Diderot felt that people should have access to ‘useful knowledge’ that they can apply to their everyday life.”

The French Revolution and Napoleon 11:2-4

However, verse 2 points out that this will head in an unexpected direction. “As soon as he becomes strong through his riches, he will stir up the entire empire against the realm of Greece.” Stir up means ‘to rouse oneself, awake’. The first phrase is more literally ‘and by his strength through his riches he will awake the whole’. This ‘awakening of the whole’ can be seen in the French Enlightenment and the Encyclopédie. Wikipedia explains that “The Encyclopédie played an important role in the intellectual foment leading to the French Revolution… While many contributors to the Encyclopédie had no interest in radically reforming French society, the Encyclopédie as a whole pointed that way. The Encyclopédie denied that the teachings of the Catholic Church could be treated as authoritative in matters of science. The editors also refused to treat the decisions of political powers as definitive in intellectual or artistic questions. Some articles talked about changing social and political institutions that would improve their society for everyone. Given that Paris was the intellectual capital of Europe at the time and that many European leaders used French as their administrative language, these ideas had the capacity to spread.” Notice how the Encyclopédie had the ulterior motive of stirring up the people against the establishment and that this attitude spread throughout Europe because of the central position occupied by France at that time.

This ‘stirring up of everything’ is ‘against the realm of Greece’. We have equated Greece with rational thought and science. The French philosophers and editors of the Encyclopédie may have thought that they were encouraging rational scientific thought, but what they ended up awakening was an emotional reaction against rational thought. The French Revolution quickly degraded into revolutionary wars and a Reign of Terror. In the words of Wikipedia, “The Reign of Terror was a period of the French Revolution when, following the creation of the First French Republic, a series of massacres and numerous public executions took place in response to revolutionary fervour, anticlerical sentiment, and accusations of treason by the Committee of Public Safety.”

More generally, The French Revolution awoke feelings of nationalism throughout all of Europe. Quoting again from Wikipedia, “Typically historians of nationalism in Europe begin with the French Revolution (1789), not only for its impact on French nationalism but even more for its impact on Germans and Italians and on European intellectuals. The template of nationalism, as a method for mobilising public opinion around a new state based on popular sovereignty, went back further than 1789: philosophers such as Rousseau and Voltaire, whose ideas influenced the French Revolution, had themselves been influenced or encouraged by the example of earlier constitutionalist liberation movements.” Summarizing, French Enlightenment philosophers developed the idea of nationalism, the French Revolution spread the idea of nationalism, and nationalism is based in feelings of popular sovereignty, which emerge when the people are ‘woken up’.

Looking at this cognitively, the Enlightenment began as an attempt to break free of absolute truth by using rational thought to study the natural world. In the objective, this led to the development of the rational Teacher theories of science. But in the subjective, absolute truth was replaced by personal opinion: The fundamental premise of absolute truth is that my source of truth has much greater personal status than me. Whenever I think, I am implicitly assuming that I have sufficient personal status to be able to think. Thus, developing rational theories of the objective will lead implicitly to the awakening of personal opinion. And when the Enlightenment became explicitly connected with attacking existing sources of absolute truth, as it did in France, then subjective Mercy-driven feelings of rebellion quickly overwhelmed objective Teacher-driven feelings of rational, scientific thought.

Verse 3 describes what happens next. “And a mighty king will arise, and he will rule with great authority and do as he pleases.” Arise means ‘to stand’. Rule means ‘to rule, have dominion’, and authority is a noun derived from this verb. And as he pleases means ‘goodwill, favor, acceptance, will’. The cognitive principle is that when absolute truth is successfully questioned, then it cannot be immediately restored. That is because absolute truth takes time to emerge: Some source of truth makes various statements. These statements are then written down. Absolute truth typically emerges after the statements are written down and the source of truth has passed on. What is left is a written record of words that were spoken by the source of truth, emotionally reinforced by Mercy feelings of respect for the source of truth. For instance, Paul wrote letters to various churches. After Paul died, these letters became absolute truth, backed up by deep religious respect for the apostle Paul. I should emphasize that we are not looking here at whether Paul’s epistles deserve to be regarded as biblical truth. The only way to determine that is to use rational thinking to analyze the content of Paul’s letters. Instead, we are looking here at how a mindset of absolute truth emerges. What matters for our current discussion is that any attempt to reestablish feelings of absolute truth will lead instead to a dictatorship.

And that is what happened in revolutionary France. The revolution successfully questioned the absolute truth of church and state. This was followed by the dictatorship of Napoleon. And because so much absolute truth had been successfully attacked, Napoleon had the freedom to do as he wished, unrestricted by any constraints of absolute truth, and he had to act with great firmness in order to restore Mercy feelings of respect for authority. Wikipedia summarizes the French desire for a return to stability. “A keen observer of Bonaparte’s rise to absolute power, Madame de Rémusat, explains that ‘men worn out by the turmoil of the Revolution […] looked for the domination of an able ruler’ and that ‘people believed quite sincerely that Bonaparte, whether as consul or emperor, would exert his authority and save [them] from the perils of anarchy.’” Wikipedia also describes the historical impact of Napoleon. “The ideas that underpin our modern world—meritocracy, equality before the law, property rights, religious toleration, modern secular education, sound finances, and so on—were championed, consolidated, codified and geographically extended by Napoleon. To them he added a rational and efficient local administration, an end to rural banditry, the encouragement of science and the arts, the abolition of feudalism and the greatest codification of laws since the fall of the Roman Empire.”

Verse 4 points out that this empire will be short-lived. “But as soon as he has arisen, his kingdom will be broken up and parceled out toward the four winds of the compass.” Broken up means to ‘break, break in pieces’. Parceled out means ‘to be divided’. And wind means ‘breath, wind, spirit’. The final phrase is more literally, ‘divided to the four winds of heaven’. Heaven represents the realm of Teacher thought. Looking at the original fulfillment of this verse, Alexander the Great conquered most of the Middle East, but upon his death, his empire was split into four separate kingdoms, each characterized by different paradigms and worldviews. There were the Seleucids and the Ptolemaics, who will be the theme of the next verses, the Bactrian Greeks, who were heavily influenced by Buddhism, and the original country of Greece. The result of this short-lived empire was to spread the rational thinking of Greece throughout the Middle East, leading to the spread of Hellenism. summarizes that “In 336 B.C., Alexander the Great became the leader of the Greek kingdom of Macedonia. By the time he died 13 years later, Alexander had built an empire that stretched from Greece all the way to India. That brief but thorough empire-building campaign changed the world: It spread Greek ideas and culture from the Eastern Mediterranean to Asia. Historians call this era the ‘Hellenistic period.’”

Similarly, Napoleon briefly ruled over most of Europe. Politically speaking, the French Napoleonic Empire was quickly defeated. Culturally, the short-lived Napoleonic Empire had a more lasting impact. Wikipedia summarizes that “In most European countries, subjugation in the French Empire brought with it many liberal features of the French Revolution including democracy, due process in courts, abolition of serfdom, reduction of the power of the Catholic Church, and a demand for constitutional limits on monarchs. The increasing voice of the middle classes with rising commerce and industry meant that restored European monarchs found it difficult to restore pre-revolutionary absolutism and had to retain many of the reforms enacted during Napoleon’s rule.”

Napoleon also brought the metric system to Europe, which has since spread to almost all the world. In the words of Wikipedia, “The first practical realisation of the metric system came in 1799, during the French Revolution, after the existing system of measures had become impractical for trade, and was replaced by a decimal system based on the kilogram and the metre. The basic units were taken from the natural world… After a period of reversion to the mesures usuelles due to unpopularity of the metric system, the metrication of France and much of Europe was complete by the 1850s.” Finally, “Napoleon's educational reforms laid the foundation of a modern system of education in France and throughout much of Europe. Napoleon synthesized the best academic elements from the Ancien Régime, The Enlightenment, and the Revolution, with the aim of establishing a stable, well-educated and prosperous society.”

The Empire of Alexander the Great split into four fragments. Similarly, the Congress of Vienna, which redrew the map of Europe after the defeat of Napoleon, was controlled by four major powers. The Encyclopedia Britannica summarizes that “Austria, Prussia, Russia, and Great Britain, the four powers that were chiefly instrumental in the overthrow of Napoleon, had concluded a special alliance among themselves with the Treaty of Chaumont, on March 9, 1814, a month before Napoleon’s first abdication. The subsequent treaties of peace with France, signed on May 30 not only by the ‘four’ but also by Sweden and Portugal and on July 20 by Spain, stipulated that all former belligerents should send plenipotentiaries to a congress in Vienna. Nevertheless, the ‘four’ still intended to reserve the real decision making for themselves.” And these four came ‘from the four winds of heaven’, because each followed different mindsets. Austria became a multicultural monarchy, Prussia became a military power, in Russia the Aristocracy ruled over the peasants, while Britain experienced the first Industrial Revolution.

Continuing with Daniel 11, verse 4 points out that this parcelling out will be “not to his own descendants, nor according to his authority which he wielded, because his sovereignty will be removed and given to others besides them.” Descendant simply means ‘the after part, end’. Authority and wield are both variants of a word that means ‘rule, dominion’. And removed means ‘uprooted’. In other words, the system of government will be uprooted and come to an end and be replaced by a different form of thinking.

This happened with the Congress of Vienna. Quoting from Wikipedia, “The Congress of Vienna has frequently been criticized by 19th century and more recent historians for ignoring national and liberal impulses, and for imposing a stifling reaction on the Continent. It was an integral part in what became known as the Conservative Order, in which the democracy and civil rights associated with the American and French Revolutions were de-emphasized.” This post-Napoleonic period is known as the Bourbon Restoration. Wikipedia explains that “The brothers of the executed Louis XVI, namely Louis XVIII and Charles X, successively mounted the throne and instituted a conservative government aiming to restore the proprieties, if not all the institutions, of the Ancien Régime. Exiled supporters of the monarchy returned to France.” Summarizing, the government of Napoleon was uprooted and replaced by a more conservative monarchy.

The Victorian Era 11:5-6

The rest of the chapter focuses upon two powers known as the king of the North and the king of the South. In the Jewish fulfillment of this passage, the North refers to the Seleucid kingdom while the South is the Ptolemaic kingdom, because the Seleucids entered Israel from the north, while the Ptolemaics entered from the South. The modern interpretation can be found by looking at the meanings of these two words. South is ‘negev’, which comes from a word meaning ‘to be parched’. And the southern desert region of Israel is currently referred to as the Negev. North comes from a word that means ‘to hide, treasure up’. One can interpret these two cognitively as objective and subjective thought. Liquid represents Mercy experiences, while a solid represents Perceiver facts. Therefore, ‘to be parched’ would represent Perceiver facts that lack Mercy experiences. This corresponds to objective thought, which determines Perceiver facts by eliminating any subjective bias of emotional Mercy experiences. ‘To hide, treasure up’ would represent MMNs of subjective experience that are too valuable to be eliminated by objective thought, which need to be hidden from the objective analysis of scientific reasoning.

This is the first reference in Daniel to a ‘king of the South’ or a ‘king of the North’. This implies a new division in thinking that has not existed before. And the end of the Napoleonic era was a societal watershed which signaled the beginning of the modern era. A primary intellectual change in the objective realm was the development of the Humboldtian model of higher education. Wikipedia explains that “These principles, in particular the idea of the research-based university, rapidly made an impact both in Germany and abroad. The Humboldtian university concept profoundly influenced higher education throughout central, eastern, and northern Europe… American universities, starting with Johns Hopkins University, were early to adopt several of the German educational and scientific principles, which during the 20th century were globally recognized as valuable.” In the subjective, the desire to ‘treasure up’ expressed itself through the nationalism mentioned earlier, as well as a growing middle class protected by civil rights. Wikipedia explains that “In most European countries, subjugation in the French Empire brought with it many liberal features of the French Revolution including democracy, due process in courts, abolition of serfdom, reduction of the power of the Catholic Church, and a demand for constitutional limits on monarchs. The increasing voice of the middle classes with rising commerce and industry meant that restored European monarchs found it difficult to restore pre-revolutionary absolutism and had to retain many of the reforms enacted during Napoleon’s rule.”

Summarizing, the struggle between the king of the South and the king of the North will be interpreted as a conflict between objective and subjective thought.

Verse 5 introduces the king of the South, “Then the king of the South will grow strong and one of his princes.” ‘And one of his princes’ is more literally ‘and from of his princes’, with prince meaning ‘chieftain, chief, ruler’. Saying this symbolically, objective thought will grow in strength, extending from one of the rulers of objective thought. This would refer to Britain, one of the four powers that carved up Europe after the Congress of Vienna. Britain experienced the Industrial Revolution, which was a triumph of objective thought, and the Industrial Revolution spread from Britain to the rest of Europe. The Industrial Revolution led to the invention of new machines, factories, sources of power, transportation, and products, but this objective advancement was achieved at a substantial subjective social cost. Wikipedia summarizes that “while growth of the economy’s overall productive powers was unprecedented during the Industrial Revolution, living standards for the majority of the population did not grow meaningfully until the late 19th and 20th centuries, and that in many ways workers’ living standards declined under early capitalism.”

Verse 5 continues: “And he will gain ascendancy over him and rule; his domain will be a great realm indeed.” Gain ascendancy is the same word translated ‘grow strong’ at the beginning of the verse, which simply means ‘to be or grow firm or strong’. And ‘rule’, ‘domain’, and ‘realm’ are all related to the same word which means ‘rule, dominion’. Wikipedia describes the great domain that Britain achieved during this era. “The Industrial Revolution began in Great Britain, and many of the technological innovations were of British origin. By the mid-18th century Britain was the world’s leading commercial nation, controlling a global trading empire with colonies in North America and the Caribbean, and with major military and political hegemony on the Indian subcontinent, particularly with the proto-industrialised Mughal Bengal, through the activities of the East India Company.”

Verse 6 introduces the king of the North. “And after some years they will form an alliance, and the daughter of the king of the South will come to the king of the North to reach an agreement.” Alliance is the reflexive form of ‘to unite, be joined’. Any references to men or women in the Bible are interpreted symbolically as referring to male or female thought. Male thought emphasizes technical thinking, which tends to be more objective, while female thought emphasizes mental networks, which are composed of emotional memories. A ‘daughter of the king of the South’ would represent a collection of cultural MMNs and theoretical TMNs that emerge as a result of objective thought. This can be seen in the Victorian society that emerged out of the Industrial Revolution.

Wikipedia describes the mental networks that ruled the Victorian era. “Morally and politically, this period began with the passage of the Reform Act 1832. There was a strong religious drive for higher moral standards led by the nonconformist churches, such as the Methodists, and the Evangelical wing of the established Church of England. Ideologically, the Victorian era witnessed resistance to the rationalism that defined the Georgian period and an increasing turn towards romanticism and even mysticism with regard to religion, social values, and arts. Technologically, this era saw a staggering amount of innovations that proved key to Britain’s power and prosperity.” In other words, the objective thinking of the Industrial Revolution gave birth to a subjective ‘daughter’ that emphasized mental networks of absolute truth, romanticism, and mysticism.

This ‘daughter of the king of the South’ becomes joined to the ‘king of the North’. The word agreement occurs 17 times in the Old Testament and is only translated as ‘agreement’ this one time. It actually means ‘evenness, uprightness, equity’. Thus, ‘reach an agreement’ is actually ‘do uprightness, equity’. This ‘doing of uprightness and equity’ was reflected in Victorian morality. Wikipedia describes the union of forces that drove Victorian morality. “The central feature of Victorian-era politics is the search for reform and improvement, including both the individual personality and society. Three powerful forces were at work. First was the rapid rise of the middle class, in large part displacing the complete control long exercised by the aristocracy. Respectability was their code—a businessman had to be trusted and must avoid reckless gambling and heavy drinking. Second, the spiritual reform closely linked to evangelical Christianity… It imposed fresh moralistic values on society, such as Sabbath observance, responsibility, widespread charity, discipline in the home, and self-examination for the smallest faults and needs of improvement… The third effect came from the liberalism of philosophical utilitarians, led by intellectuals… They were not moralistic but scientific… Evangelicals and utilitarians shared a basic middle-class ethic of responsibility and formed a political alliance. The result was an irresistible force for reform.” Looking at this cognitively, there is the ‘daughter of the king of the South’, which represents the middle class and their desire for respectability. And there is the ‘king of the North’, which represents the desire to preserve valuable mental networks of human dignity, approached from the male perspective of formulating rules, performing scientific research, and passing legislation.

These forces became united to ‘do uprightness and equity’. Wikipedia explains that “Social reforms focused on ending slavery, removing the slavery-like burdens on women and children, and reforming the police to prevent crime, rather than emphasizing the very harsh punishment of criminals. Even more important were political reforms, especially the lifting of disabilities on nonconformists and Roman Catholics, and above all, the reform of Parliament and elections to introduce democracy and replace the old system whereby senior aristocrats controlled dozens of seats in parliament.” All of these laws involve social uprightness and equity—bringing equality to various groups for moral reasons.

Verse 6 continues by saying that this alliance will not last. “But she will not keep her strength of arm, nor will he remain with his arm”. Keep means ‘to restrain, retain’. Arm means ‘arm, shoulder, strength’. And remain means ‘stand’. The hands are used to perform detailed manipulation. The arms wield the hands. Thus, arms would represent the wielding of technical thought. This will be interpreted as legislation, because legislation is a wielding of technical thought. ‘Not keeping her strength of arm’ would mean that mental networks of the Victorian era are losing their ability to influence legislation in a detailed manner. Similarly, if he ‘does not stand with his arm’, then this means that the subjective thinking of ‘the North’ is becoming less able to stand in a factual manner. Applying this to Victorian society, the emotional moralizing that drove the initial legislative reforms lost its potency, and the absolute truth of religion and culture became less rigid.

Looking at the secular side, the emotional focus shifted from bettering social conditions to celebrating national progress. This can be seen in the national exhibitions. For instance, the Great Exhibition of 1851 was “a celebration of modern industrial technology and design. It was arguably a response to the highly effective French Industrial Exposition of 1844: indeed, its prime motive was for Britain to make ‘clear to the world its role as industrial leader’… Although the Great Exhibition was a platform on which countries from around the world could display their achievements, Britain sought to prove its own superiority. The British exhibits at the Great Exhibition ‘held the lead in almost every field where strength, durability, utility and quality were concerned, whether in iron and steel, machinery or textiles.’ Britain also sought to provide the world with the hope of a better future.” In other words, the feeling changed from ‘we need to make the world a better place’ to ‘we have arrived’. Looking at this cognitively, the mindset of absolute truth has a fundamental weakness. A person will only continue to believe in absolute truth if that person feels that the source of absolute truth is far more important than personal identity. Therefore, achieving personal success will naturally lead to doubt in absolute truth, leading to a loss of ‘strength of arm’.

Looking at the religious side, faith in the Bible began to be questioned by liberal theology. Wikipedia explains that “Liberal Protestantism developed in the 19th century out of a need to adapt Christianity to a modern intellectual context… Traditional Protestants understood the Bible to be uniquely authoritative (sola scriptura); all doctrine, teaching and the church itself derive authority from it. A traditional Protestant could therefore affirm that ‘what Scripture says, God says.’ Liberals, however, seek to understand the Bible through modern biblical criticism, such as historical criticism, that began to be used in the late 1700s to ask if biblical accounts were based on older texts or whether the Gospels recorded the actual words of Jesus. The use of these methods of biblical interpretation led liberals to conclude that ‘none of the New Testament writings can be said to be apostolic in the sense in which it has been traditionally held to be so’.” In other words, the Bible stopped being viewed as a rigorous source of morality and was treated instead as myth and poetry.

The problem was not with the content of Christianity, but rather with the mindset of absolute truth. Scientific research uses Perceiver thought to discover truth by looking for repeated connections, while absolute truth uses Mercy emotions to overwhelm Perceiver thought into ‘knowing’ what is ‘true’. Thus, rational thinking will naturally question the mindset of absolute truth.

Verse 6 continues, “but she will be given up, along with those who brought her in and the one who fathered her as well as he who supported her in those times.” Given up means to ‘be given to’. And supported means ‘to make strong’. Remember that ‘she’ refers to the Victorian culture that grew out of the Industrial Revolution. This culture will be ‘given away’, which indicates that it will be willingly replaced by a new culture. Three other elements will also be given away. ‘Those who brought her in’ would refer to the engineers and inventors who created the wonders of the Victorian era. ‘The one who fathered her’ would represent the mindset of rational scientific thought that gave birth to the technological wonders. And ‘he who made her strong’ would correspond to the mindset of growth and development that enabled the Industrial Revolution.

The first point can be seen in the growing emphasis upon entertainment and leisure. Wikipedia explains that “Opportunities for leisure activities increased dramatically as real wages continued to grow and hours of work continued to decline… By the late Victorian era the leisure industry had emerged in all cities. It provided scheduled entertainment of suitable length at convenient locales at inexpensive prices. These included sporting events, music halls, and popular theatre.”

The second point can be seen in the shift away from rational thinking to Romanticism. Quoting from Wikipedia, “Ideologically, the Victorian era witnessed resistance to the rationalism that defined the Georgian period and an increasing turn towards romanticism and even mysticism with regard to religion, social values, and arts.”

The third point can be seen in the growing focus upon domestic life as a refuge from society. In the words of Wikipedia, “The home became a refuge from the harsh world; middle-class wives sheltered their husbands from the tedium of domestic affairs… The emerging middle-class norm for women was separate spheres, whereby women avoid the public sphere – the domain of politics, paid work, commerce, and public speaking. Instead, they should dominate in the realm of domestic life, focused on the care of the family, the husband, the children, the household, religion, and moral behavior. Religiosity was in the female sphere.”

I should emphasize that there was nothing inherently wrong with these three points. The problem lay in treating them as alternatives to rational thought rather than as expressions of rational thought. Leisure, romanticism, and domestic life were all treated as ways to escape temporarily from technologically driven society.

The Victorian Empire 11:7-8

Verse 7 describes the replacement: “But one of the branch of her roots will arise in his place, and he will come against their army and enter the fortress of the king of the North, and he will deal with them and prevail.” ‘His’ presumably refers to the ‘king of the North’, which represents male technical thought based in valuable mental networks, such as the mental networks of religion, absolute truth, and various social groups within society. This replacement will come from one of the offshoots of Victorian mental networks. ‘Against their army’ combines the preposition ‘to, into, toward’ with ‘the army’. And this is the first use of the word army in Daniel. Thus, what is being described here is not coming against some foreign army but rather becoming militaristic—‘coming to the army’. Fortress means ‘a place or means of safety, protection’. The ‘fortress of the king of the North’ would represent viewing valuable mental networks as a place of safety or protection. Putting this together, Victorian technology is becoming militaristic, and following Victorian morality is being replaced by preserving and protecting the British Empire. Finally, deal simply means to ‘do, make’. And prevail means to ‘make strong, strengthen’. In other words, the militaristic mindset of protecting the British Empire will increasingly characterize actions and behavior.

Wikipedia describes this shift towards militarism. “Britain’s relations with the other Great Powers were driven by the colonial antagonism of the Great Game with Russia, climaxing during the Crimean War; a Pax Britannica of international free trade was maintained by the country’s naval and industrial supremacy. Britain embarked on global imperial expansion, particularly in Asia and Africa, which made the British Empire the largest empire in history.” Notice the emphasis upon building military power in order to preserve the Empire.

Wikipedia also describes the growing British emphasis upon military service. “At the peak of the British Empire, the middle and upper classes were often militaristic, usually seeking to join the armed forces to increase their social standing, especially the Yeomanry regiments (volunteer cavalry, who had been in existence since the Napoleonic Wars).” This growth of British militarism reached its peak during the Anglo Boer Wars, fought between the British and the Boers in South Africa. The first Boer War was instigated by the discovery of diamonds in South Africa, while the second Boer War was triggered by the discovery of gold and more diamonds. Wikipedia summarizes that “Britain was able to mobilise unprecedented numbers of troops including reserves and volunteers to fight in South Africa, and to transport and maintain them there thanks to Britain’s industrial resources, the Royal Navy and Britain’s merchant fleet.”

The British in the second Boer War were the first to use concentration camps at a national level. Wikipedia describes that “As Boer farms were destroyed by the British under their ‘Scorched Earth’ policy—including the systematic destruction of crops and the slaughtering or removal of livestock, the burning down of homesteads and farms—to prevent the Boers from resupplying themselves from a home base, many tens of thousands of men, women and children were forcibly moved into the camps. This was not the first appearance of internment camps, as the Spanish had used internment in Cuba in the Ten Years’ War, but the Boer War concentration camp system was the first time that a whole nation had been systematically targeted, and the first in which some whole regions had been depopulated… Over 26,000 women and children perished in these concentration camps.” Thus, in a few short decades, the British descended from instituting sweeping social reforms driven by the moral truths of the Bible to imprisoning the women and children of an entire nation in concentration camps to die of starvation and disease.

At a more technological level, the Victorian era saw a total transformation in naval power. Wikipedia summarizes, “During the 19th century a revolution took place in the means of marine propulsion, naval armament and construction of warships. Marine steam engines were introduced, at first as an auxiliary force, in the second quarter of the 19th century. The Crimean War gave a great stimulus to the development of guns. The introduction of explosive shells soon led to the introduction of iron, and later steel, naval armour for the sides and decks of larger warships. The first ironclad warships, the French Gloire and British Warrior, made wooden vessels obsolete. Metal soon entirely replaced wood as the main material for warship construction. From the 1850s, the sailing ships of the line were replaced by steam-powered battleships, while the sailing frigates were replaced by steam-powered cruisers. The armament of warships also changed with the invention of the rotating barbettes and turrets, which allowed the guns to be aimed independently of the direction of the ship and allowed a smaller number of larger guns to be carried.” This naval power was not a trivial matter, because changing technology meant that existing ships continually became obsolete and had to be replaced at ever-increasing cost.

In verse 8 this is followed by a secularization of religious icons. “And he will also take into captivity to Egypt their gods with their cast metal images and their precious vessels of silver and gold.” Gods is the word ‘Elohim’, one of the names for God, and it is written in the plural. Thus, ‘their gods’ could also be translated as ‘their God’. Cast metal image can mean either ‘a libation, molten image’ or ‘prince’. Vessel means ‘article, utensil, vessel’. Precious means ‘desire, delight’.

Egypt represents the secular realm. For instance, the path of personal transformation is represented—at a group level—by leaving Egypt, traveling through the wilderness, and then entering the promised land. Thus, this verse describes taking the symbols and rituals of religion and culture and using them to add emotional prestige to secular existence. This can be summarized as equating God with country.

This secularization of religious impulses is illustrated by The White Man’s Burden, a poem written by Rudyard Kipling, to celebrate the diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1897. Wikipedia explains that “The imperialist interpretation of ‘The White Man's Burden’ (1899) proposes that the white race is morally obliged to civilise the non-white peoples of planet Earth, and to encourage their progress (economic, social, and cultural) through settler colonialism: The implication, of course, was that the Empire existed not for the benefit—economic or strategic or otherwise—of Britain, itself, but in order that primitive peoples, incapable of self-government, could, with British guidance, eventually become civilized (and Christianized).” Notice how the Christian message of personal salvation into the unseen kingdom of heaven has been transformed into an imperialistic message of cultural salvation into the visible kingdom of Western civilization, with a passing reference to Christianity in parentheses.

A similar sentiment can be seen in the American concept of manifest destiny, “a widely held cultural belief in the 19th-century United States that American settlers were destined to expand across North America.” Wikipedia summarizes that “Historian William E. Weeks has noted that three key themes were usually touched upon by advocates of manifest destiny: the virtue of the American people and their institutions; the mission to spread these institutions, thereby redeeming and remaking the world in the image of the United States; the destiny under God to do this work.” Notice how the Christian message of being personally transformed into the image of the unseen God has been transformed into the imperialistic message of other inferior cultures being transformed into the image of Western civilization.

I should emphasize that the problem does not lie with attempting to spread civilization, or with connecting civilization with Christianity. The problem lies in ignoring the core Christian message of personal transformation and replacing this with the imposition of Western culture. In other words, instead of extending the Christian message to include the objective, the Christian message was taken captive by the objective. This type of behavior will naturally emerge from absolute truth, because a person who believes in absolute truth will think that he already possesses the ultimate in truth, he will not see any need to learn from others, but rather feel that it is his duty to proclaim absolute truth to others.

Victorian Revivalism 11:8-9

Verse 8 finishes by saying that cultural and religious institutions and mental networks remain intact for a while. “And he on his part will stand from the king of the North for some years.” This is an accurate translation, except that the phrase ‘on his part’ is not in the Hebrew. In other words, the king of the South will give freedom to the king of the North for a while. Applying this to the Victorian era, even though objective thought has appropriated the symbols and icons of subjective culture and religion, culture and religion will continue to exist for a while as if they are independent entities. Saying this another way, the Victorian citizen will still attend church and act as if church has religious meaning.

Wikipedia describes this paradoxical vitality of the late Victorian church. “Despite the negative forces, Protestantism demonstrated a striking vitality by 1900. Shrugging off Enlightenment rationalism, Protestants embraced romanticism, with the stress on the personal and the invisible… The stirrings of pietism on the Continent, and evangelicalism in Britain expanded enormously, leading the devout away from an emphasis on formality and ritual and toward an inner sensibility toward personal relationship to Christ. Social activities, in education and in opposition to social vices such as slavery, alcoholism and poverty provided new opportunities for social service. Above all, worldwide missionary activity became a highly prized goal, proving quite successful in close cooperation with the imperialism of the British, German, and Dutch empires.” On the one hand, missionary activity was now being carried out ‘in close cooperation with imperialism’. But on the other hand, mental networks of ‘personal relationship to Christ’ and ‘social activities’ continued to provide a strong motivation for missionary activity.

This section ends with verse 9. “Then the latter will enter the realm of the king of the South, but will return to his own land.” In other words, the king of the North, which represents treasured mental networks, will temporarily enter the realm of the king of the South, which represents objective thought. The Hebrew word translated enter means ‘to come in, come’. This gives the idea that subjective mental networks will come close to the realm of the objective but then return to the realm of the subjective.

One can see this in the revivalism of the late 19th century, exemplified by preachers such as Dwight Moody and Charles Spurgeon. Moody conducted evangelistic crusades internationally and preached in total to over 100 million people in Europe and America. Similarly, Spurgeon preached a total of 3600 sermons during his lifetime, frequently to crowds numbering more than 10,000. This was before the invention of either amplification or radio.

Spurgeon was the pastor of the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London, which seated “5000 people with standing room for another 1000. The Metropolitan Tabernacle was the largest church edifice of its day. Spurgeon continued to preach there several times per week until his death 31 years later. He never gave altar calls at the conclusion of his sermons, but he always extended the invitation that if anyone was moved to seek an interest in Christ by his preaching on a Sunday, they could meet with him at his vestry on Monday morning. Without fail, there was always someone at his door the next day.” Notice the focus upon the message of ‘having a personal relationship with Jesus’ which forms the heart of evangelical Christianity. This can be seen as an expression of ‘the king of the North’, with its focus on preserving what is valuable in the subjective. Similarly, “Moody aided the work of cross-cultural evangelism by promoting ‘The Wordless Book,’ a teaching tool developed in 1866 by Charles Spurgeon. In 1875, Moody added a fourth color to the design of the three-color evangelistic device: gold — to ‘represent heaven.’ This ‘book’ has been and is still used to teach uncounted thousands of illiterate people, young and old, around the globe about the gospel message.”

Both of these preachers ‘entered into the realm of the king of the South’ by influencing the realm of objective facts. For instance, Spurgeon’s “preaching, although not revolutionary in substance, was a plain-spoken and direct appeal to the people, using the Bible to provoke them to consider the teachings of Jesus Christ.” And when the Baptist Union started to question the absolute truth of the Bible, Spurgeon responded by defending the Bible and leaving the Baptist Union. Wikipedia quotes from his response: “Believers in Christ’s atonement are now in declared union with those who make light of it; believers in Holy Scripture are in confederacy with those who deny plenary inspiration; those who hold evangelical doctrine are in open alliance with those who call the fall a fable.” Moody did something similar, founding the ‘Moody Bible Institute’ in 1886 in Chicago, which still exists today. Wikipedia relates that this school was founded for the “education and training of Christian workers, including teachers, ministers, missionaries, and musicians who may completely and effectively proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ.”

Notice how the objective realm of ‘the king of the South’ is being entered by teaching about the Bible in a factual manner. However, the goal of this education was not to construct Teacher theories in a scientific manner, but rather to ‘return to his land’—to come back to the home of subjective mental networks, mentally revitalized by the educational foray into the realm of objective facts. In contrast, the goal of mental symmetry is to use a rational Teacher theory of cognition to reformulate all of Christianity and subjective identity.

World War I Mobilization 11:10

Verse 10 describes a major shift into military activity. “And his sons will mobilize and assemble a multitude of great forces.” Mobilize is the reflexive form of a verb that means ‘to stir up strife, engage in strife’, which would indicate several parties stirring themselves up and stirring each other up for strife. Multitude means ‘sound, murmur, roar, crowd, abundance’. And forces is the same word for ‘army’ that was used previously in verse 7. This corresponds historically to the start of World War I, which was preceded by warmongering saber-rattling, and began with a great mobilization of armed forces by many countries.

Wikipedia describes the cascading chain of mobilizations that characterized the start of World War I. “A network of interlocking alliances enlarged the crisis from a bilateral issue in the Balkans to one involving most of Europe… Russia felt it necessary to back Serbia, and approved partial mobilisation after Austria-Hungary shelled the Serbian capital of Belgrade, which was a few miles from the border, on 28 July. Full Russian mobilisation was announced on the evening of 30 July; the following day, Austria-Hungary and Germany did the same, while Germany demanded Russia demobilise within twelve hours. When Russia failed to comply, Germany declared war on Russia on 1 August in support of Austria-Hungary, the latter following suit on 6 August; France ordered full mobilisation in support of Russia on 2 August.”

World War I was preceded by an ‘assembling of great forces’. Wikipedia describes the arms race that preceded World War I. “The creation of the German Reich following victory in the 1871 Franco-Prussian War led to a massive increase in Germany’s economic and industrial strength. Admiral Alfred von Tirpitz and Wilhelm II, who became Emperor in 1890, sought to use this to create a Kaiserliche Marine or Imperial German Navy to compete with Britain’s Royal Navy for world naval supremacy… However, it was also driven by Wilhelm’s admiration of the Royal Navy and desire to outdo it. This resulted in the Anglo-German naval arms race… Ultimately, the race diverted huge resources to creating a German navy large enough to antagonise Britain, but not defeat it. In 1911, Chancellor Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg acknowledged defeat, leading to the Rüstungswende or ‘armaments turning point’, when Germany switched expenditure from the navy to the army.”

Mobilization also played a major role in the prewar arms race. Quoting from Wikipedia, Russia “increased investment post-1908 in railways and infrastructure in its western border regions. Germany and Austria-Hungary relied on faster mobilisation to compensate for fewer numbers; it was concern at the closing of this gap that led to the end of the naval race, rather than a reduction in tension elsewhere. When Germany expanded its standing army by 170,000 men in 1913, France extended compulsory military service from two to three years; similar measures taken by the Balkan powers and Italy, which led to increased expenditure by the Ottomans and Austria-Hungary… from 1908 to 1913, defence spending by the six major European powers increased by over 50% in real terms.”

‘His sons’ would refer to the sons of the kings of the North. We have just associated the advance of the king of the North with evangelical revivalism. This revivalism did not lead directly to war, but it did help create a population of devoted citizens who would be driven by feelings of religious duty to serve their country. Thus, it was ‘his sons’ that motivated the conflict. One can see this focus upon subjective emotions of national and ethnic prestige in the arms race that preceded World War I.

And those who initially promoted the First World War were definitely ‘the sons’ of those who emphasized Christian belief. Christianity Today describes the support of the church for the First World War. “One of the most difficult challenges for contemporary British Christians as we approach Remembrance Sunday is to understand why the Christians of a century ago were in general so hugely supportive of Britain’s engagement in the Great War… Britain, it was argued, had a moral duty to defend smaller countries, and to ensure that the might of the German army did not trample over what was right… In 1914, while the halcyon days of the British Empire were past, Britain still saw herself as the guardian of civilisation for the world. Moreover, for many in the churches, it could not be that it was purely by chance that a quarter of the land on classroom globes was pink. Indeed, it must have been divinely-intentioned that the Empire had become so large and so powerful. Therefore, it was believed, Britain and her Empire had a God-given duty to respond when the militarism of Germany threatened Europe.” Summarizing, the initial motivation for World War I came from the ‘king of the North’, as citizens were driven by an emotional desire to protect valuable mental networks of culture and civilization. And this motivation was driven by the combining of God-and-country. The vast British Empire was seen as ‘divinely-intentioned’ and the conflict received the full support of most churches.

Verse 10 continues, “and one of them will keep on coming and overflow and pass through, so that he may again wage war up to his fortress.” The first phrase accurately translates the original Hebrew, with ‘one of them’ being implied by the verbs being conjugated in the singular. However ‘so that he may again’ is a single word which adds the prefix ‘and’ to ‘turn back, return’. And up to means ‘as far as, even to, up to’.

The ‘keep on coming, overflowing, and passing through of one of them’ corresponds to the Schlieffen Plan that was initially carried out successfully by Germany. Wikipedia describes this initial success. “When the war began, the German Order of Battle placed 80% of the army in the West, with the remainder acting as a screening force in the East. The plan was to quickly knock France out of the war, then redeploy to the East and do the same to Russia. Schlieffen deliberately kept the German left (i.e. its positions in Alsace-Lorraine) weak to lure the French into attacking there, while the majority were allocated to the German right, so as to sweep through Belgium, encircle Paris and trap the French armies against the Swiss border… The initial German advance in the West was very successful: by the end of August the Allied left, which included the British Expeditionary Force (BEF), was in full retreat.”

The German advance reached ‘as far as’ Paris, getting to within 15 km of the French capital. The French and British then successfully counterattacked, driving the Germans back about 50 km. The successful defense of Paris “included about 3,000 men from the Seventh Division who were transported in a fleet of Paris taxicabs requisitioned by General Gallieni.” This was followed by the repeated ‘turning back’ of the Race to the Sea in which both sides attempted to outflank the other. Wikipedia summarizes that “The term describes reciprocal attempts by the Franco-British and German armies to envelop the northern flank of the opposing army through the provinces of Picardy, Artois and Flanders, rather than an attempt to advance northwards to the sea. The ‘race’ ended on the North Sea coast of Belgium around 19 October.” The goal of the Germans was to achieve a decisive victory by bypassing the Allies, while the goal of the Allies was to stop the Germans from doing so.

World War I Trench Warfare 11:11-12

This is when the Western Front turned into the traditional image of trench warfare. Verse 11 describes this shift. “And the king of the South will be enraged and go out and fight with him, with the king of the North.” Enraged means to ‘embitter himself’. This describes a settled opposition as opposed to an emotional outburst. Go out means ‘to go or come out’. And fight means ‘to feed on; figuratively, to consume; by implication, to battle (as destruction)’. This is the second of two times that this word is used in Daniel (the other time is in 10:20).

The South represents objective thought. World War I began as a great mobilization, driven by feelings of duty, religion, and patriotism. However, when trench warfare started, then World War I turned into a war of technology, driven by the scientific, objective thinking of ‘the king of the South’. This objective thinking became ‘embittered’ against the subjective identity of human flesh as technology was harnessed to create human carnage. Wikipedia describes this transition into the ‘destructive battles’ that ‘consumed’ humanity. “Military tactics developed before World War I failed to keep pace with advances in technology and had become obsolete. These advances had allowed the creation of strong defensive systems, which out-of-date military tactics could not break through for most of the war. Barbed wire was a significant hindrance to massed infantry advances, while artillery, vastly more lethal than in the 1870s, coupled with machine guns, made crossing open ground extremely difficult. Commanders on both sides failed to develop tactics for breaching entrenched positions without heavy casualties. In time, however, technology began to produce new offensive weapons, such as gas warfare and the tank.”

Verse 11 continues by describing the response to this technology. “Then the latter will raise a great multitude, but that multitude will be handed over to his hand.” Raise means ‘to take one’s stand, stand’. ‘Great multitude’ uses the same two words that were used in verse 10 at the beginning of the conflict. However, verse 10 refers to a great multitude of soldiers, while verse 11 just mentions a great multitude. Something similar happened in World War I. The war began with professional soldiers. However, when these were killed off by the new technology, new armies had to be raised composed of civilian volunteers who were then taught to fight. In Britain this was known as Kitchener’s Army. (Lord Kitchener was the British leader who had set up the British concentration camps in the second Boer War.)

Wikipedia summarizes that “The New Army, often referred to as Kitchener’s Army or, disparagingly, as Kitchener’s Mob, was an (initially) all-volunteer portion of the British Army formed in the United Kingdom from 1914 onwards following the outbreak of hostilities in the First World War in late July 1914.” Notice that this multitude is being raised by the king of the North. In other words, emotional feelings of duty to God and country were used to raise this multitude. Quoting from Wikipedia, “All five of the full army groups… were made up of volunteer recruits, which included the famous Pals’ Battalions. Due to the huge numbers of men wishing to sign up, in places queues up to a mile long formed outside recruitment offices, there were many problems in equipping and providing shelter for the new recruits.”

Returning to verse 11, handed over means ‘to give, put’. Hands represent technical thought, because hands are used to perform detailed manipulation. And the hands in verse 11 belong to the king of the South. Therefore, being ‘given into his hand’ would represent hordes of individuals recruited through emotional means being given over to the technical manipulation of objective thought. This summarizes the battles of Verdun and the Somme, which took place in 1916. These two battles lasted almost a year and turned into a meat grinder in which human flesh was continually being sent to the front in order to be mowed down by machine guns and artillery. There were about 800,000 casualties including 300,000 killed in the battle of Verdun. Wikipedia summarizes about the Battle of the Somme that “The opening day of the offensive (1 July 1916) was the bloodiest day in the history of the British Army, suffering 57,470 casualties, including 19,240 dead. The entire Somme offensive cost the British Army some 420,000 casualties. The French suffered another estimated 200,000 casualties and the Germans an estimated 500,000.”

Wikipedia also describes the extensive use of artillery by the Germans during the opening of the battle of Verdun. “Special arrangements were made to maintain a high rate of artillery-fire during the offensive; 33 1⁄2 munitions trains per day were to deliver ammunition sufficient for 2,000,000 rounds to be fired in the first six days and another 2,000,000 shells in the next twelve. Five repair shops were built close to the front to reduce delays for maintenance and factories in Germany were made ready, rapidly to refurbish artillery needing more extensive repairs. A redeployment plan for the artillery was devised to move field guns and mobile heavy artillery forward, under the covering fire of mortars and the super-heavy artillery. A total of 1,201 guns were massed on the Verdun front, two thirds of which were heavy- and super-heavy artillery.”

This is followed in verse 12 by the triumph of technology over humanity. “When the multitude is carried away, his heart will rise, and he will cause tens of thousands to fall.” It is hard to keep track, but this verse is referring to the king of the South, who represents objective thought. Carried away means ‘lifted, carried, taken’. The phrase ‘his heart will rise’ is cognitively curious because the South represents the absence of emotions. This implies that objective thought is acquiring its own set of subjective emotions. In other words, technology is maturing to the point of developing its own culture. A similar transition has happened today with social media, because what began as using computers to send messages in an objective manner has turned into an entire culture with its own Mercy feelings.

Wikipedia summarizes the various technologies that matured or were invented during World War I. “Military technology of the time included important innovations in machine guns, grenades, and artillery, along with essentially new weapons such as submarines, poison gas, warplanes and tanks.” More generally, the carnage caused by technology resulted in a restructuring of the human elements of the military. Quoting further from Wikipedia, “One could characterize the earlier years of the First World War as a clash of 20th-century technology with 19th-century military science creating ineffective battles with huge numbers of casualties on both sides. On land, the quick descent into trench warfare came as a surprise, and only in the final year of the war did the major armies make effective steps in revolutionizing matters of command and control and tactics to adapt to the modern battlefield and start to harness the myriad new technologies to effective military purposes.” This is another aspect of the heart of the king of the South rising, with the mental networks of traditional military command being replaced by rational human organization. As for ‘causing tens of thousands to fall’, this summarizes the impact that technology had upon the First World War.

Verse 12 finishes, “Yet he will not prevail”. Prevail means ‘to be strong’. In other words, even though technology succeeded in slaughtering millions during World War I, the subjective mental networks of the North re-emerged during the interwar period, as expressed by the rise of Nazism and Communism.

Russian Communism 11:13-14

Verse 13 describes the revival of military nationalism. “For the king of the North will again raise a greater multitude than the former, and after an interval of some years he will press on with a great army and much equipment.” The first phrase refers to the raising of a multitude, which would represent the return of nationalism after the end of the First World War. Again means ‘to turn back, return’. Thus, this rise of nationalistic multitudes was viewed as a revisiting of the First World War. Verse 13 adds that this multitude will be greater than the first.

The second phrase specifically mentions the term army, which indicates a re-militarization. This re-militarizion happens ‘after an interval of some years’, which means that there will be an interwar period of several years of peace before the re-militarization. This will be followed by ‘pressing on with a great army’ and the same two words were used to represent the initial success of the German invasion of France during World War I. Similarly, both Nazi Germany and Communist Russia experienced considerable success before World War II through the threat and use of military force.

The word equipment means ‘property, goods’, and this is the first time this word is used in Daniel. The phrase ‘a great army, and much equipment’ describes the mechanized armies of the Second World War. In the words of Wikipedia, “compared to previous wars, World War II had the greatest effect on the technology and devices that are used today. Technology also played a greater role in the conduct of World War II than in any previous war in history and had a critical role in its final outcome.”

The next section adds some details. Verse 14 says, “Now in those times many will rise up against the king of the South; the violent ones among your people will also raise themselves up to fulfill the vision, but they will fall down.” ‘In those times’ indicates that the same historical era is being examined. This indicates that a closer look is being taken at the ‘interval of some years’ mentioned in verse 13. Saying this more clearly, verse 13 looked forward to give an overview, summarizing what would happen ‘after an interval of some years’, while verse 14 provides more details about ‘those times’.

Rise up means ‘to take one’s stand, stand’. And against means ‘upon, above, over’. The king of the South represents objective thought. This summarizes communism, which attempts to overthrow objective concepts of ownership and private property. Wikipedia describes the economic disparity that existed in Russia before the Communist revolution. “The government, in order to finance the war, printed millions of ruble notes, and by 1917, inflation had made prices increase up to four times what they had been in 1914. Farmers were consequently faced with a higher cost of living, but with little increase in income.” More generally, “Russia consisted mainly of poor farming peasants and substantial inequality of land ownership, with 1.5% of the population owning 25% of the land. The rapid industrialization of Russia also resulted in urban overcrowding and poor conditions for urban industrial workers… In one 1904 survey, it was found that an average of 16 people shared each apartment in Saint Petersburg, with six people per room. There was also no running water, and piles of human waste were a threat to the health of the workers.”

The Russian Revolution rose up against this inequality of ownership. Eventually, almost all private ownership was attacked as an enemy of the state. Wikipedia elaborates: “In the early Soviet Union, particularly Soviet Russia and Azerbaijan, kulak became a vague reference to property ownership among peasants who were considered ‘hesitant’ allies of the revolution… During the first five-year plan, Stalin’s all-out campaign to take ownership and organisation from the peasantry meant that ‘peasants with a couple of cows or five or six acres more than their neighbors’ were labeled kulaks. Under dekulakization, government officials seized farms and killed some resisters, deported others to labor camps, and drove many to migrate to the cities following the loss of their property to the collective.”

Daniel 11 talks extensively about the ‘king of the South attacking’ or the ‘king of the North raising a multitude’, but this is the only reference to a popular uprising, in which many spontaneously rise up against a king. This is consistent with the Russian Revolution, which began as a popular uprising by the people against the objective ownership of capitalism. Saying this more carefully, capitalism is based upon ownership, and ownership uses the objective facts of Perceiver thought to subdivide the world into categories of ‘mine’, ‘yours’, ‘his’, ‘hers’ and so on. The Russian Revolution replaced this ownership with commune-ism.

Continuing with verse 14, this is the only use of violent in Daniel. These ‘violent men’ are described as ‘of your people’. The beginning of the chapter described Daniel rising up to protect Darius, and that was interpreted as using the Teacher emotions of general theories to support the initial development of scientific thought (within a societal context of absolute monarchy). Thus, ‘of your people’ could refer to a movement that is based in general Teacher theory. This applies to communism, which finds its justification in the general theory of Marxism-Leninism. Wikipedia summarizes that “Marxism–Leninism is a communist ideology and the main communist movement throughout the 20th century. Marxism–Leninism was the formal name of the official state ideology adopted by the Soviet Union… Marxism–Leninism holds that a two-stage communist revolution is needed to replace capitalism.” Notice that Marxism-Leninism is described as an ideology, which refers to a general theory in Teacher thought. This theory is providing the theoretical justification for the ‘violent men’ of a communist revolution that ‘rises up against’ the ‘king of the South’ of capitalism.

Verse 14 says that these violent men will ‘raise themselves up to fulfill the vision’. Raise themselves up is the reflexive form of ‘lift, carry, take’, which leads to the meaning of ‘make a rising, an insurrection’. This definitely happened during the Russian Revolution. Fulfill is the standard word ‘to take one’s stand’, and vision is the word used in Daniel to describe Daniel’s visions. Putting this together, the goal of the insurrection is to turn some vision into reality. Similarly, Wikipedia summarizes that “In Marxist thought, a communist society or the communist system is the type of society and economic system postulated to emerge from technological advances in the productive forces, representing the ultimate goal of the political ideology of communism. A communist society is characterized by common ownership of the means of production with free access to the articles of consumption and is classless and stateless, implying the end of the exploitation of labour.” Stated more simply, communism is officially driven by the vision of creating a worker’s paradise. Looking at this cognitively, general Teacher theories will lead to the formation of Platonic forms, which are internal visions of idealized and simplified reality. These internal visions of possible perfection will naturally become goals for concrete behavior in Mercy thought. Thus, the theory of Marxism-Leninism led to the Platonic form of the worker’s paradise, and a communist revolution will be at least partially motivated by the positive goal of turning this vision into reality.

However, verse 14 finishes by pointing out that ‘they will stumble’, and stumble means ‘to stumble, stagger, totter’. Similarly, the vision of the worker’s paradise that initially drove communism turned into the nightmare of widespread oppression by the state. This stumbling can be seen in the term ‘enemy of the people’, which was commonly used in the Soviet Union. Wikipedia explains that “An ‘enemy of the people’ could be imprisoned, expelled or executed, and lose their property to confiscation. Close relatives of enemies of the people were labeled as ‘traitor of Motherland family members’ and prosecuted. They could be sent to Gulag, punished by the involuntary settlement in unpopulated areas, or stripped of citizen’s rights… A majority of the enemies of the people were given this label not because of their hostile actions against the workers’ and peasants’ state, but simply because of their social origin or profession before the revolution.”

I suggested earlier that ‘among your people’ could be interpreted as being guided by general Teacher theories. One could also interpret this as being a Jew, because Daniel was a Jew. Jewish people played a major role in the Russian Revolution. Wikipedia points out that “By December 1917, five of the twenty-one members of the Communist Central Committee were Jews: the commissar for foreign affairs, the president of the Supreme Soviet, the deputy chairman of the Council of People’s Commissars, the president of Petrograd Soviet, and the deputy director of the Cheka secret police.” Going further, Karl Marx was an ethnic Jew. I know that many have taken this to the level of a conspiracy theory, “alleging that the Jews were the originators of the Russian revolution in 1917, and that they held primary power among the Bolsheviks, who led the revolution”, and I am not attempting to promote any sort of anti-Semitic canard. However, Friedrichs Engels recognized in a letter written in 1890 that there was some sort of Jewish connection to communism. Quoting from the last paragraph of Engel’s letter, “We are far too deeply indebted to the Jews. Leaving aside Heine and Börne, Marx was a full-blooded Jew; Lassalle was a Jew. Many of our best people are Jews. My friend Victor Adler, who is now atoning in a Viennese prison for his devotion to the cause of the proletariat, Eduard Bernstein, editor of the London Sozialdemokrat, Paul Singer, one of our best men in the Reichstag – people whom I am proud to call my friends, and all of them Jewish!”

German Nazism 11:15-16

Verse 15 then turns to the king of the North. “Then the king of the North will come, pile up an assault ramp, and capture a well-fortified city; and the forces of the South will not stand their ground.” Pile up actually means ‘to pour out, pour’, and liquid refers to the realm of Mercy experiences. Assault ramp means ‘a mound’ and is usually translated as ‘a siege ramp’. A hill or mountain has been interpreted in other essays as referring to a pragmatic theory, because one can gain a general overview of the landscape from the top of a mountain. Well-fortified means ‘fortification’, and this is the first use of this word in Daniel. Forces means ‘arm, shoulder, strength’, and we have been interpreting arms as the wielding of technical thought, because the hands are used to perform detailed manipulation. Verse 15 does not refer to the king of the South, but rather to the ‘arm of the South’. The South represents objective thought, therefore, the arm of the South would represent a system that uses objective, technical thought.

This is the only reference to a city in Daniel 11. A city represents some center of civilization, because civilization expresses itself through the structure and specialization of cities. Putting this all together, subjective thought is using a flood of Mercy experiences to construct a pragmatic theory in order to capture a fortified center of civilization. And the objective, technical system of this center of civilization is unable to stand.

The masses rose up in verse 14, indicating a popular insurrection. In verse 15, the king of the North is acting, indicating an official response. I suggest that verse 15 describes the rise of Nazism in Germany in the 1930s, and that the well-fortified city represents the German university system—which was a fortification of civilized, systematic, objective, technical thought. This takeover was significant because we saw earlier that the German Humboldtian university system had provided the model for higher education that was copied by the rest of the world.

Looking at this in more detail, Nazism was based in the subjective mental networks of the ‘king of the North’. The Wikipedia article on Nazism summarizes that “Its extreme nationalism originated in pan-Germanism and the ethno-nationalist Völkisch movement which had been a prominent aspect of German nationalism since the late 19th century.” Wikipedia explains that “Völkisch nationalism denounced soulless materialism, individualism and secularised urban industrial society, while advocating a ‘superior’ society based on ethnic German ‘folk’ culture and German ‘blood’. It denounced foreigners and foreign ideas and declared that Jews, Freemasons and others were ‘traitors to the nation’ and unworthy of inclusion. Völkisch nationalism saw the world in terms of natural law and romanticism and it viewed societies as organic, extolling the virtues of rural life, condemning the neglect of tradition and the decay of morals.” Notice the references to subjective emotions of race, culture, ethnicity, tradition, organic rural life, and romanticism.

Verse 15 can be viewed as following verse 14, because Nazism viewed itself, at least partially, as a response against communism. And “The Nazis also believed that the Jews had instigated the Bolshevik revolution in Russia and that Communists had stabbed Germany in the back and caused it to lose the First World War.” Wikipedia adds that “The Communist Party of Germany (KPD) was the largest Communist Party in the world outside of the Soviet Union, until it was destroyed by the Nazis in 1933. In the 1920s and early 1930s, Communists and Nazis often fought each other directly in street violence, with the Nazi paramilitary organisations being opposed by the Communist Red Front and Anti-Fascist Action… After the Nazis came to power, they quickly banned the Communist Party under the allegation that it was preparing for revolution and that it had caused the Reichstag fire.”

Turning now to the university system under Nazism, Wikipedia states that “In May 1933 books from university libraries which were deemed culturally destructive, mainly due to anti-National Socialist or Jewish themes or authors, were burned by the Deutsche Studentenschaft (German Student Union) in town squares, e.g. in Berlin, and the curricula were subsequently modified. Martin Heidegger became the rector (and later head) of Freiburg University, where he delivered a number of National Socialist speeches and for example promulgated the Führerprinzip at the University on August 21, 1933.”

And in November 1933, 900 professors from 26 German academic institutions signed a “Vow of allegiance of the Professors of the German Universities and High-Schools to Adolf Hitler and the National Socialistic State.” And “Martin Heidegger in his inaugural lecture in May 1933… said (translated): ‘The much celebrated “academic freedom” is being banished from the German university; for this freedom was not genuine, since it was only negative.’”

Academic freedom is an intellectual fortification, because it shields the thinking of the scholar from the opinions of government and society. The pragmatic theory of Nazism was raised against this fortress of academic freedom, supported by a flood of Nazi propaganda and Nazi rallies. This flood of Mercy experiences was exemplified by the Nuremberg rallies, yearly Nazi party rallies that took place in Nuremberg from 1927. Wikipedia summarizes that the rally “was intended to symbolize the solidarity between the German people and the Nazi Party. This point was further emphasized by the yearly growing number of participants, which finally reached over half a million from all sections of the party, the army, and the state.” Notice the focus upon the Mercy experience of solidarity between people and party.

Verse 15 concludes by saying that no one will stand, “not even the people of its choice ones, for there will be no strength to make a stand.” The NASB translates this as ‘their choicest troops’, implying that this refers to a military conflict, but a footnote gives the more accurate translation that is shown here. People means ‘people, nation’. Choice means ‘choicest, best’. Strength means ‘strength, power’. And resist is the standard word that means ‘stand’. Applying this historically, German universities before World War II were regarded as the best in the world, peopled by the choicest scholars. These scholars had no strength or power to resist the Nazification of German universities. Physics Today describes the scientific exodus that happened when Jews were excluded from public office in 1933. “Over the next several years, hundreds of German scientists and other intellectuals would flee to the UK, the US, and dozens of other countries to protect their livelihoods and their lives. The Nazi regime pushed out leading researchers such as Albert Einstein, Hans Krebs, and even national hero Fritz Haber, who had helped develop chemical weapons during World War I… The names in the physics section read like a who’s who of early 20th-century physics… Three of the displaced scientists—Einstein, Franck, and Schrödinger—were already physics Nobel laureates; five more would eventually receive the prize. A 2016 study found that the 15% of physicists who were dismissed from German universities accounted for 64% of all German physics citations.” In other words, the choicest scientists in the world were unable to stand against the Nazi takeover of German universities, but instead had to flee to other countries.

Verse 16 describes what the king of the North does next: “But he who comes against him will do as he pleases, and no one will be able to withstand him; he will also stay for a time in the Beautiful Land, with destruction in his hand.” Do as he pleases was previously used in verse 3, which we interpreted as the dictatorship of Napoleon. Except, verse 3 talked about ‘ruling with great authority’, while verse 16 talks about ‘coming against’. Napoleon was a dictator, but he also instituted many positive reforms. Wikipedia describes this mixed legacy. “In the political realm, historians debate whether Napoleon was ‘an enlightened despot who laid the foundations of modern Europe’ or ‘a megalomaniac who wrought greater misery than any man before the coming of Hitler’.” And it is appropriate that this quote compares Napoleon with Hitler, because Hitler was also a dictator who ‘did as he pleased’. However, unlike Napoleon, Hitler does not have a mixed legacy but rather used most of his power to ‘come against’ other cultures and countries.

The dictatorship of Hitler was reflected in an official policy known as Führerprinzip, mentioned in a quote a few paragraphs earlier. Wikipedia summarizes that this “prescribed the fundamental basis of political authority in the Government of Nazi Germany. This principle can be most succinctly understood to mean that ‘the Führer’s word is above all written law’ and that governmental policies, decisions, and offices ought to work toward the realization of this end.” This also became a general principle that determined how German society was run. Quoting again from Wikipedia, “When Hitler finally came to absolute power… he changed his title to ‘Fuehrer and Reich Chancellor’, and the Führerprinzip became an integral part of German society. Appointed mayors replaced elected local governments. Schools lost elected parents’ councils and faculty advisory boards, with all authority being put in the headmaster’s hands. The Nazis suppressed associations and unions with elected leaders, putting in their place mandatory associations with appointed leaders… Conflicting associations – e.g., sports associations responsible for the same sport – were coordinated into a single one under the leadership of a single Führer, who appointed the Führer of a regional association, who appointed the sports club Führer… Eventually, virtually no activity or organization in Germany could exist that was completely independent of party and/or state leadership.” Consistent with this, verse 16 points out that ‘no one will withstand him’. More literally, this says ‘and nothing stands to his face’. ‘Face’ implies that personal status and personal communication play a big role. Similarly, no independent power stood before the face of Hitler and the Führerprinzip. The personal element can be seen in the following quote from Wikipedia. “Many Nazi officials dreaded making decisions in Hitler’s absence. Rules tended to become oral rather than written; leaders with initiative who flouted regulations and carved out their own spheres of influence might receive praise and promotion rather than censure… Many propaganda films developed the importance of the Führerprinzip.”

Verse 16 continues, “he will also stay for a time in the Beautiful Land, with destruction in his hand.” The word destruction means ‘accomplish, cease, consume away, determine, destroy utterly’. The emphasis is upon finality. This is the first use of this word in Daniel and it will be repeated in verse 36. The NASB in a footnote explains that ‘Beautiful Land’ refers to Israel. Similarly, Wikipedia explains that “The ‘Final Solution to the Jewish question’ was the official code name for the murder of all Jews within reach, which was not restricted to the European continent. This policy of deliberate and systematic genocide starting across German-occupied Europe was formulated in procedural and geopolitical terms by Nazi leadership in January 1942 at the Wannsee Conference held near Berlin, and culminated in the Holocaust.”

‘Hand’ represents technical thought, and implementing the ‘final solution’ required extensive planning and systematic execution. This planning included extensive documentation and Wikipedia relates that after the war, “some 3,000 tons of original German records [were] captured by Allied armies, including the Einsatzgruppen reports, which documented the progress of the mobile killing units assigned, among other tasks, to kill Jewish civilians during the attack on the Soviet Union in 1941.” And it has recently been uncovered that IBM punch card technology played a major facilitating role. Wikipedia explains that “The 1933 census, with design help and tabulation services provided by IBM through its German subsidiary, proved to be pivotal to the Nazis in their efforts to identify, isolate, and ultimately destroy the country’s Jewish minority. Machine-tabulated census data greatly expanded the estimated number of Jews in Germany by identifying individuals with only one or a few Jewish ancestors… As the Nazi war machine occupied successive nations of Europe, capitulation was followed by a census of the population of each subjugated nation, with an eye to the identification and isolation of Jews and Romani… Data generated by means of counting and alphabetization equipment supplied by IBM through its German and other national subsidiaries was instrumental in the efforts of the German government to concentrate and ultimately destroy ethnic Jewish populations across Europe.” Thus, it makes sense to talk about ‘destruction in his hand’, because implementing the Holocaust required extensive technical support.

The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich 11:17-19

Verse 17 continues, “And he will set his face on coming with the power of his entire kingdom, and with him equitable things which he will put into effect.” (As usual, I am using the literal translations given in the footnotes.) Set means ‘to put, place, set’. Power means ‘authority, power, strength’. In other words, the dictator will personally decide to come with the authority of his entire realm. The Encyclopaedia Britannica summarizes this juxtaposition. “Nazi leader Adolf Hitler imagined his dictatorial regime as the historical successor to two great German empires. By claiming for his government the mantle of the Third Reich, Hitler attempted to position himself within the larger context of German and European history. In his mind, Hitler’s ‘thousand-year Reich’ would serve as the natural conclusion of a process that he traced back to the coronation of Charlemagne in 800.”

The second phrase contains three words in the original Hebrew. Equitable things means ‘straight, right’ and can refer either to what is right or to upright people. ‘With him’ implies others working together with the leader. And he will put into effect is the common word ‘do, make’. In other words, those who are upright will go along with what the dictator does. This happened in the case of Hitler. Before the war, other nations followed a policy of appeasement while Germany extended the authority of the Third Reich to one region after another. Wikipedia explains that “Chamberlain’s policy of appeasement emerged from the failure of the League of Nations and the failure of collective security. The League of Nations was set up in the aftermath of World War I in the hope that international cooperation and collective resistance to aggression might prevent another war. Members of the League were entitled to the assistance of other members if they came under attack. The policy of collective security ran in parallel with measures to achieve international disarmament and where possible was to be based on economic sanctions against an aggressor. It appeared to be ineffectual when confronted by the aggression of dictators.” The League of Nations was the precursor to the United Nations and was set up after World War I in order to settle disputes in a more righteous manner, and the League of Nations did successfully settle a number of international disputes. However, the League of Nations was unable to limit the spread of Nazi Germany in the 1930s, allowing Hitler to re-militarize the Rhineland in 1936, swallow up Austria in 1938, and take over part of Czechoslovakia, also in 1938.

The allies also took few steps to stop the Jewish Holocaust. Wikipedia summarizes that “While the Polish government-in-exile managed to raise awareness of the Jewish genocide among the Allies by December 1942, this did not result in any on-the-ground action by Allied nations to either stop the ongoing slaughter of millions of Jews and other minorities, or to save and absorb refugees. Rather, the Allies focused their efforts exclusively on conducting a wholesale military campaign in order to defeat the Third Reich.”

Verse 17 finishes, “he will also give him the daughter of women to ruin it. But she will not take a stand for him or be for him.” Explicit references to men or women are being interpreted in these essays as referring to male or female thought. Verse 17 contains a double reference to female thought, referring to the daughter of women. Cognitively speaking, this represents mental networks that are based in a foundation of mental networks. Ruin means to ‘spoil, ruin’. Deciphering the various pronouns leads to the conclusion that this daughter of women is being given ‘to him’ in order to spoil or ruin the kingdom.

Applying this to Germany, the Nazis practiced a bizarre collection of religious rituals based upon ancient myths. A center for this cult was established at the castle of Wewelsburg. Wikipedia relates that “very quickly the focus of activity shifted away from schooling the SS leadership in a broad set of ideological fields to something much narrower. In fact, work concentrated more on conducting basic pseudo-scientific research in the fields of Germanic pre- and early history, medieval history, folklore and genealogy (Sippenforschung), all intended to provide the underpinnings for the racial teachings of the SS.” Notice how a mythological system is being set up to motivate the SS, based upon mental networks of ancient German mythology. Cognitively speaking, this is a daughter of women. And it is being ‘given to him’ in the sense of providing motivation for the male technical thinking of the SS division of the German military.

This pseudo-historical work was referred to as the Ahnenerbe, which was established “as an SS appendage devoted to the task of promoting the racial doctrines espoused by Adolf Hitler and his governing Nazi Party, specifically by supporting the idea that the modern Germans descended from an ancient Aryan race seen as biologically superior to other racial groups.” And the purpose of the Ahnenerbe was to ‘spoil and ruin’ the German empire by providing a justification for Nazi cruelty. Quoting further from Wikipedia, “The Nazi government used the Ahnenerbe’s research to justify many of their policies. For instance, the think tank’s claim that archaeological evidence indicated that the ancient Aryans lived across eastern Europe was cited in justification of German military expansion into that region. Ahnenerbe research was also cited in justification of the Holocaust, the mass killing of Jews and other groups—including Roma and homosexuals—through extermination camps and other methods.”

Verse 17 adds that ‘she will not take a stand or be for him’. Similarly, the Ahnenerbe did not manage to fully cross over from pseudoscience to serious academic research. Quoting from one website, “The Ahnenerbe did not go unchallenged. Alfred Rosenberg, a key ideologue behind Nazi racial theory and Lebensraum, was often at loggerheads with Ahnenerbe co-founder Hermann Wirth… Though the occult underpinned much of what the Ahnenerbe did, many academics working for the organization resented occult interest in their research. Himmler’s right-hand mystic, Karl Maria Wiligut was a source of these academics’ ire when they were forced to work with him. They considered Wiligut, who claimed he could clairvoyantly recall 300,000 years of history of his tribe, the ‘worst kind of fantasist.’” The author concludes that “Ahnenerbe was meant to play a central part in wiping Christianity from Germany and replacing it with its own pagan religion supported by their own so-called archaeological, pseudoscientific and pseudohistorical fabrications. But it never got the chance.”

More generally, Wikipedia observes that “the SS needed a coherent doctrine that would set it apart. Himmler attempted to construct such an ideology, and to this purpose he deduced a ‘pseudo-Germanic tradition’ from history. However, this attempt was not entirely successful. Höhne observes that ‘Himmler’s neo-pagan customs remained primarily a paper exercise’.”

Verse 18 describes a period of expansionism. “Then he will turn his face to the coastlands and capture many.” Coastland is found once in Daniel and means ‘dry land, a coast, an island’. Capture means to ‘capture, seize, take’ and is found one other time in Daniel in verse 15. We interpreted that as the Nazis taking control of the German educational system. This suggests a type of military and political intervention that goes beyond merely taking over some territory to imposing a system upon that territory. Similarly, Nazi Germany took over most of Europe during the beginning of World War 2, reaching the greatest expanse in 1942. Thus, one could interpret ‘capturing many coastlands’ as taking over many smaller ethnic regions and swallowing them up into a massive pan-Germanic Empire.

The Nazi plan was to impose a New Order upon these occupied territories. Wikipedia explains that “Among other things, it entailed the creation of a pan-German racial state structured according to Nazi ideology to ensure the supremacy of an Aryan-Nordic master race, massive territorial expansion into Central and Eastern Europe through its colonization with German settlers, the physical annihilation of the Jews, the Slavs (especially Poles and Russians), Roma (‘gypsies’) and others considered to be ‘unworthy of life’ and the extermination, expulsion or enslavement of most of the Slavic peoples and others regarded as ‘racially inferior’.”

One could also interpret ‘capturing many coastlands’ more literally as the Japanese capture of many coastal regions and islands which began in 1941. Japan had been militarily involved in Korea and China for many years, but, as Wikipedia summarizes, “Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Japanese launched offensives against Allied forces in East and Southeast Asia, with simultaneous attacks in British Hong Kong, British Malaya and the Philippines. Hong Kong surrendered to the Japanese on December 25. In Malaya the Japanese overwhelmed an Allied army composed of British, Indian, Australian and Malay forces… In the Philippines, the Japanese pushed the combined American-Filipino force towards the Bataan Peninsula and later the island of Corregidor… On February 15, 1942, Singapore, due to the overwhelming superiority of Japanese forces and encirclement tactics, fell to the Japanese, causing the largest surrender of British-led military personnel in history… The Japanese then seized the key oil production zones of Borneo, Central Java, Malang, Cebu, Sumatra, and Dutch New Guinea of the late Dutch East Indies.”

Verse 18 continues by saying that this initial success will eventually be stopped. “But a commander will put a stop to his taunting against him; moreover, he will repay him for his taunting.” Commander means captain, guide, prince, ruler’ and is found once in Daniel. Put a stop means ‘cause to cease, put an end to’. Taunting means ‘a reproach’. And repay means ‘to turn back, return’.

Applying this to World War II, German and Japanese expansionism was eventually brought to a halt by Allied Forces. However, Allied countries were not controlled by a single king or dictator. Instead, they remained politically independent and coordinated their military efforts through central military commanders. For instance, Allied Forces in Western Europe were under the command of Gen. Eisenhower, and the central staff included a French and Soviet representative. Thus, it makes sense that verse 18 talks about the counterattack being led by a commander.

Going further, merely defeating the Nazis was not enough. That is because Nazi ideology had placed the ultimate reproach upon many other ethnic groups, declaring that they had no right to exist, and backing up this declaration with systematic ethnic cleansing and genocide. This reproach had to be put to an end. And eventually this reproach was turned back upon the Nazis, because since World War II, Nazism has been regarded as the epitome of evil. The greatest reproach that can be placed upon people these days is to call them Nazis. For instance, Godwin’s law suggests that “If an online discussion (regardless of topic or scope) goes on long enough, sooner or later someone will compare someone or something to Adolf Hitler or his deeds, the point at which effectively the discussion or thread ends.” And Hitler has so much reproach that comparing someone inappropriately with Hitler is a known logical fallacy. Wikipedia explains that “Reductio ad Hitlerum is a form of association fallacy. The argument is that a policy leads to—or is the same as—one advocated or implemented by Adolf Hitler or the Third Reich and so ‘proves’ that the original policy is undesirable.”

In verse 19, the focus turns to defense, which is eventually followed by the end of the Empire. “So he will turn his face toward the fortresses of his own land, but he will stumble and fall and not be found.” Fortress means ‘a place or means of safety, protection’. It was last seen in verse 10, which we interpreted as German forces coming within a few kilometers of Paris in World War I. Applying this to Nazi Germany, German advances ground to a halt at the end of 1942. The Germans responded by building massive defensive fortifications. This was known in the West as the Atlantic Wall. Wikipedia summarizes that “The Atlantic Wall was an extensive system of coastal defences and fortifications built by Nazi Germany between 1942 and 1944, along the coast of continental Europe and Scandinavia as a defence against an anticipated Allied invasion of Nazi-occupied Europe from the United Kingdom, during World War II.” The Germans attempted to build a similar set of fortifications on the East, but did not have sufficient time. Wikipedia explains that “At this time Hitler agreed to a general withdrawal to the Dnieper line, along which was meant to be the Ostwall, a line of defence similar to the Westwall (Siegfried Line) of fortifications along the German frontier in the west. The main problem for the Wehrmacht was that these defences had not yet been built; by the time Army Group South had evacuated eastern Ukraine and begun withdrawing across the Dnieper during September, the Soviet forces were hard behind them.” The Westwall was a set of fortifications on the Western border of Germany. Wikipedia clarifies that “On 24 August 1944, Hitler gave a directive for renewed construction on the Siegfried Line. 20,000 forced labourers and members of the Reichsarbeitsdienst (Reich Labour Service), most of whom were 14–16-year-old boys, attempted to re-equip the line for defence purposes.” Notice the personal role played by Hitler. In both cases he is ‘turning his face’ from one goal to another, almost like the Eye of Sauron in Lord of the Rings.

Continuing with verse 19, stumble means ‘to stumble, stagger, totter’. It has been used once previously in Daniel in 11:14, which was interpreted as the stumbling of the Marxist-Leninist vision of the worker’s paradise. Fall and be found are both accurate translations. ‘Found’ is a common word, but only used twice in Daniel. The second occurrence is in 12:1. Applying this to Nazi Germany, the Nazis did not just lose the war. Instead, Nazism ceased to exist as a coherent entity and the vast majority of former Nazis faded into the background and attempted to hide their past. Quoting from a Time magazine article, “After the war, most ordinary Nazis—Gestapo agents, S.S. and S.A. auxiliaries, party members and government officials, as well as German citizens who embraced the party’s rhetoric—faded into relative obscurity and were able to create fresh false identities and make a clean break with their pasts. They were aided by a silence within families and within the polity that persisted for decades. When post-war trials against Nazis occurred, they generally ignored low-level functionaries and killers and aimed to convict only prominent members of the regime. Between 1945 and 1958, only 6,093 former Nazis were convicted of having committed a crime—a drop in the ocean when we remember that in 1945 the Nazi party had eight million members.” And many high-ranking Nazis escaped post-war Germany, primarily for South America. Thus, it is accurate to say that Nazism could not be found after the war.

As for the stumbling and staggering, the absolute authority wielded by the Nazi regime naturally led to a corrupt kleptocracy, in which officers and politicians attempted to get rich off of stolen loot. Looking at this more generally, “The mass bombing of German towns and cities [started in 1943]. There is a considerable body of evidence that indicates a rapid decline in German civilian morale from this point, even before the stream of income and supplies from occupied countries began to shrink and dry up as German armies started their long retreat. Increasingly in the last two years of the war, Germans were bound to the regime by terror, as the Nazi party escalated its repression until by early 1945 it was openly hanging ‘traitors’ on the streets.” Therefore, in the same way that the communist vision of the worker’s paradise’s stumbled and became the dictatorship of the party, so the Nazi propaganda of a superior Aryan race stumbled and became an army of thieves and murderers who maintained their position through terror.

The Cold War 11:20

Verse 20 finally brings us to the postwar era. “Then in his place one will arise who will allow an oppressor to pass through the splendor of his kingdom.” Allow means ‘to cause to pass over’. This does not necessarily mean making something happen, but rather causing something to pass over or to pass by. This describes a close miss rather than a direct hit.

Oppressor means ‘to drive (an animal, a workman, a debtor, an army); by implication, to tax, harass, tyrannize’. Splendor is found once in the Old Testament and means ‘an ornament, adornment, splendor’.

Remember that we are still talking about the subjective realm of the king of the North, which refers to the mental networks of subjective thought. Putting the three terms from the previous paragraph together, the kingdom contains unusual wealth and splendor, especially at the personal level of adornment and ornament. Going further, people are in danger of being oppressed by some taskmaster. But this tyrant or taskmaster is ‘passing over’.

This combination portrays the Cold War culture of the 1950s. There was unusual prosperity. Wikipedia summarizes that “The post–World War II economic expansion, also known as the postwar economic boom or the Golden Age of Capitalism, was a broad period of worldwide economic expansion beginning after World War II and ending with the 1973–1975 recession. The United States, Soviet Union and Western European and East Asian countries in particular experienced unusually high and sustained growth, together with full employment.” PBS describes the personal prosperity of the postwar period. “Americans invested in items based around home and family life. At war’s end, the items people most desired included televisions, cars, washing machines, refrigerators, toasters, and vacuum cleaners: the machines that would help them modernize their lives… Purchasing for the home helped alleviate traditional American uneasiness with consumption: the fear that spending would lead to decadence.”

Consumer spending was portrayed in America as one’s patriotic duty. Quoting further from the PBS article, “The American consumer was praised as a patriotic citizen in the 1950s, contributing to the ultimate success of the American way of life. ‘The good purchaser devoted to “more, newer and better” was the good citizen,’ historian Lizabeth Cohen explained, ‘since economic recovery after a decade and a half of depression and war depended on a dynamic mass consumption economy.’” This describes a performing of civic duty in a manner that ‘passes over’ normal life rather than impacting it directly.

Combined with this unprecedented personal prosperity was a fear of annihilation from the newly developed atomic bomb. Worldhistory describes how this juxtaposition felt in America. “Amid all the positive postwar feelings, something unsettling lingered beneath the surface of the parades, reunions, and hopefulness. In the war we had unleashed the most devastating weapon ever created, and we were now at the dawning of a new nuclear age. Once it became evident that the Soviets also possessed the technology to create atomic weapons, sudden nuclear annihilation was a real and terrifying possibility… The desire to feel safe and secure mixed with the fear of Communism and ‘the bomb’ to create the prototype for the perfect American family. Of course a family could not prevent a nuclear attack. But in a world of uncertainty, Americans could at least feel safe in their own homes.” Notice how the adornment of personal prosperity is being combined with the passing over of the tyrant of nuclear war and communist dictatorship.

Verse 20 adds that this ‘passing over’ of dictatorship will eventually abate without leading to war. “Yet within a few days he will be broken, though not in anger nor in battle.” Broken means ‘to be broken, break in pieces’. Anger means ‘nostril, nose, face, anger’. And battle means ‘a battle, war’. In other words, the Cold War will not turn hot; the threat of nuclear annihilation will not turn into reality. And this change will not be the direct result of confrontation. ‘Breaking into pieces’ implies that this threat will still exist, but it will no longer be a monolithic entity. For instance, when I grew up in the 60s and 70s, the threat of nuclear war still existed, but it was not the primary fixation. I did not have nightmares about nuclear war, and we did not watch videos that told us to duck and cover as they did in the 1950s.

Civil Rights Movement 11:21-23

Verse 21 describes how this shift will occur. “And in his place a despicable person will arise, on whom the majesty of kingship has not been conferred.” Arise is the normal word for ‘stand’. Despicable means ‘despised’ and ‘person’ is not explicitly mentioned. Majesty means ‘splendor, majesty, vigor’, and kingship refers more generically to dominion and reign. Conferred means ‘to give’.

Verses 20 and 21 have similar phrases. Verse 20 talked about the ‘splendor of kingdom’ while verse 21 talks about the ‘majesty of kingdom’. The word in verse 20 focuses more upon adornment while the word in verse 21 describes a more imposing majesty. In verse 21, this imposing majesty is not being given to the despised. Neither of these verses mention a specific person or king, but rather refer to a ‘causing to pass over’ and a ‘despised’.

This shift in focus can be seen historically in the civil rights movement of the 1960s. Wikipedia summarizes that “The Civil Rights Movement in the United States was a decades-long campaign by African Americans and their like-minded allies to end institutionalized racial discrimination, disenfranchisement and racial segregation in the United States… it made its largest legislative gains in the mid-1960s after years of direct actions and grassroots protests.” Notice the focus upon the ‘despised’ of society—blacks who were institutionally discriminated against and disenfranchised.

These despised arose. Quoting again from Wikipedia, “African-American women in the civil rights movement were pivotal to its success. They volunteered as activists, advocates, educators, clerics, writers, spiritual guides, caretakers and politicians for the civil rights movement; leading and participating in organizations that contributed to the cause of civil rights.”

One of the main complaints was that dominion had not been given to the blacks, but rather they had been effectively disenfranchised. Wikipedia summarizes that “For more than sixty years, blacks in the South were essentially excluded from politics, unable to elect anyone to represent their interests in Congress or local government. Since they could not vote, they could not serve on local juries.”

Verse 21 continues, “but he will come in a time of tranquility and seize the kingdom by intrigue.” ‘A time of’ is not in the original Hebrew and tranquility means ‘quietness, ease’. Seize means ‘to be or grow firm or strong’ and is in the causative (hifil). Kingdom is the same word that was used earlier in verse 21. And intrigue means ‘smoothness, slipperiness, flattery, fine promises’. Thus, a more literal translation is ‘and come in tranquility and cause to grow in kingdom in smoothness’.

Applying this to the civil rights movement, the quietness and ease was reflected in the nonviolent resistance of the early civil rights movement. Wikipedia explains that “During the time period considered to be the ‘African-American civil rights’ era, the predominant use of protest was nonviolent, or peaceful.” And protesters were specifically taught how to respond with quietness and ease. Quoting further from Wikipedia, “There is the philosophical method, which involves understanding the method of nonviolence and why it is considered useful, and there is the tactical method, which ultimately teaches demonstrators ‘how to be a protestor—how to sit-in, how to picket, how to defend yourself against attack, giving training on how to remain cool when people are screaming racist insults into your face and pouring stuff on you and hitting you’.”

The civil rights movement began small, but ‘grew firm and strong’. describes some of the pivotal moments that started as individual protests and grew into national movements. For instance, “On December 1, 1955, a 42-year-old woman named Rosa Parks found a seat on a Montgomery, Alabama bus after work. Segregation laws at the time stated Black passengers must sit in designated seats at the back of the bus, and Parks had complied. When a white man got on the bus and couldn’t find a seat in the white section at the front of the bus, the bus driver instructed Parks and three other Black passengers to give up their seats. Parks refused and was arrested. As word of her arrest ignited outrage and support, Parks unwittingly became the ‘mother of the modern day civil rights movement’.” Similarly, “On February 1, 1960, four college students took a stand against segregation in Greensboro, North Carolina when they refused to leave a Woolworth’s lunch counter without being served. Over the next several days, hundreds of people joined their cause in what became known as the Greensboro sit-ins. After some were arrested and charged with trespassing, protesters launched a boycott of all segregated lunch counters until the owners caved and the original four students were finally served at the Woolworth’s lunch counter where they’d first stood their ground. Their efforts spearheaded peaceful sit-ins and demonstrations in dozens of cities and helped launch the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee to encourage all students to get involved in the civil rights movement.”

As for the ‘intrigue’, eloquent speeches played a major role in the civil rights movement. For instance, thoughtco mentions four critical speeches of this era, including Martin Luther King’s ‘Letter from a Birmingham Jail’, John F. Kennedy’s civil rights speech, Martin Luther King’s ‘I have a Dream’, and Lyndon B. Johnson’s ‘We Shall Overcome’. Another website mentions ‘50 essential civil rights speeches’, with most of them from the 1960s. The thoughtco article states that “King’s writings and speeches, in particular, have endured for generations because they eloquently express the injustices that inspired the masses to take action. His words continue to resonate today.” And Wikipedia summarizes that “Martin Luther King Jr… became the most visible spokesperson and leader in the Civil Rights Movement from 1955 until his assassination in 1968. King advanced civil rights through nonviolence and civil disobedience.” Thus, smooth words and fine promises definitely played a major role in driving the civil rights movement.

Was there also slipperiness and flattery? It is better not to address that question directly. However, Wikipedia does mention that “King was criticized by other black leaders during the course of his participation in the civil rights movement. This included opposition by more militant thinkers such as Nation of Islam member Malcolm X. Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee founder Ella Baker regarded King as a charismatic media figure who lost touch with the grassroots of the movement as he became close to elite figures like Nelson Rockefeller.”

Verse 22 describes the longer-term impact of the civil rights movement. “And the overflowing forces will be flooded away from him and smashed, and also the prince of the covenant.” Force means ‘arm, shoulder, strength’, which we have been interpreting as the wielding of technical thought. The first phrase is more literally ‘and with the arm of a flood, shall be flooded from before his face’, with flood occurring both as a verb and a noun. Smashed is the same word that was used in verse 20, which means ‘to be broken’.

Water represents Mercy experiences. Therefore, ‘being flooded by a flood’ indicates an onslaught of massive Mercy experiences. However, the reference to ‘arm’ indicates that this flood of Mercy experiences will also be accompanied by technical thought.

Turning to Western history, the civil rights movement was followed by massive protests against the Vietnam War. Wikipedia summarizes that the “anti-war sentiment developed during a time of unprecedented student activism and right on the heels of the Civil Rights Movement, and was reinforced in numbers by the demographically significant baby boomers. It quickly grew to include a wide and varied cross-section of Americans from all walks of life. The anti-Vietnam war movement is often considered to have been a major factor affecting America’s involvement in the war itself.”

Wikipedia describes how these protest grew into the ‘flooding by a flood’ of an entire counterculture. “The aggregate movement gained momentum as the U.S. Civil Rights Movement continued to grow… As the 1960s progressed, widespread social tensions also developed concerning other issues, and tended to flow along generational lines regarding human sexuality, women’s rights, traditional modes of authority, experimentation with psychoactive drugs, and differing interpretations of the American Dream. Many key movements related to these issues were born or advanced within the counterculture of the 1960s.” Physically speaking, a flood is a massive flow of water that sweeps away existing structures. Similarly, the 1960s counterculture was a massive flow of the water of Mercy experiences that swept away existing MMNs of society.

For instance, Wikipedia describes that in cinema “The breakdown of enforcement of the US Hays Code concerning censorship in motion picture production, the use of new forms of artistic expression in European and Asian cinema, and the advent of modern production values heralded a new era of art-house, pornographic, and mainstream film production, distribution, and exhibition. The end of censorship resulted in a complete reformation of the western film industry.” More personally, “The availability of new and more effective forms of birth control was a key underpinning of the sexual revolution. The notion of ‘recreational sex’ without the threat of unwanted pregnancy radically changed the social dynamic and permitted both women and men much greater freedom in the selection of sexual lifestyles outside the confines of traditional marriage.” Notice that in both cases, what is being pursued is not intellectual freedom, but rather experiential freedom from social norms.

I am not sure from the original Hebrew if ‘the arm’ is doing the flooding or being flooded. However, both interpretations fit the civil rights era, because the mass protests caused detailed legislation to be passed, and this legislation led itself to a flood of new experiences. Wikipedia summarizes that the “Movements for civil rights in the United States include noted legislation and organized efforts to abolish public and private acts of racial discrimination against African Americans and other disadvantaged groups between 1954 and 1968, particularly in the southern United States.”

Verse 22 finishes by referring to ‘the prince of the covenant’. The word prince means leader, ruler, prince’ and is used three times in Daniel. The other two times are in 9:25-26 and verse 25 refers to ‘Messiah the prince’. Covenant is the word used to describe the covenant between God and people, and it will be used five times in verses 22-32. Thus, covenant is a core concept of the next verses. The next four references refer to the covenant by itself, while verse 22 mentions the prince of the covenant. Looking at this symbolically, covenant would refer to the content of Christian doctrine and theology, while the ‘prince of the covenant’ would describe Christian doctrine viewed from a personal perspective—absolute truth based in the emotional status of Church status and authority. In verse 22, this ‘Christianity based in the absolute truth of Christendom’ is being swept away. One author summarizes that “The 1960s were a time of explosive religious change. In the Christian churches, it was a time of innovation from the ‘new theology’ and ‘new morality’ of Bishop Robinson, to the evangelicalism of the Charismatic Movement, and of charismatic leaders, such as Pope John XXIII and Martin Luther King. But it was also a time of rapid social and cultural change when Christianity faced challenges from Eastern religions, from Marxism and feminism, and above all from new ‘affluent’ lifestyles.” Another academic paper summarizes that “The modern collapse of Christian culture and practice in Europe is surely one of the greatest of historical changes. At its heart lay a crisis in the 1960s, one that is attracting increasing attention for its role in originating the trends in contemporary religion. Yet, though there is considerable agreement on the significance and even the severity of the impact upon Christianity in that decade, there is considerable disagreement on the precise nature of what actually happened.”

That paper also describes the focus upon the ‘prince of the covenant’—the MMNs of emotional status that supported traditional Christianity. “It was the identification of ‘being religious’ as part of establishment belonging that gave the religious crisis its sense of external threat. Religion was being targeted by various forces because it was seen as part of the establishment. Behind it lay an even more powerful and widespread social phenomenon — the religious apathy of the young who were the customers for the anti‐religious jibing of the comedy and popular music of the decade in satire shows including That Was the Week That Was and Monty Python’s Flying Circus, and rock albums like Jethro Tull’s Aqualung. But the lampooning of organised Christianity signalled less a growth of organised anti‐religious secularism as a rejection of church and parental controls.” Notice how MMNs of religious authority are being attacked, lampooned, belittled, and ignored as part of ‘the establishment’. Thus, it makes sense to refer to the ‘prince of the covenant’.

The Birth of Deconstructionism 11:24

In verse 24, the counterculture becomes part of the establishment. “After an alliance is made with him he will practice deception, and he will go up and gain power with a small force of people.” Alliance means ‘to unite, be joined’. Practice means to ‘do, make’. Deception means ‘deceit, treachery’. Go up means ‘to go up, ascend’, and gain power means ‘to be vast, mighty, numerous’. Small force means ‘a little, fewness, a few’. And people means ‘nation, people’, but it is used to refer to Gentiles, and not to the Jews. Putting this all together, the anti-establishment will join forces with the establishment, but the ‘anti-establishment turned establishment’ will practice deception, making it possible for a few outsiders to influence a vast multitude of people.

Wikipedia summarizes this alliance and excessive influence. “Several factors distinguished the counterculture of the 1960s from the anti-authoritarian movements of previous eras… The era was also notable in that a significant portion of the array of behaviors and ‘causes’ within the larger movement were quickly assimilated within mainstream society, particularly in the US, even though counterculture participants numbered in the clear minority within their respective national populations.” Notice how the anti-authoritarian viewpoint was ‘quickly assimilated within mainstream society… even though counterculture participants numbered in the clear minority’.

An article on describes the rise of the radical professor in the 1960s. “Since the late 1960s, self-identified liberal professors have become increasingly common on college campuses. In fact, according to Abrams, most of the growth in liberal faculty in recent decades ‘came at the expense of the moderate identifiers who are now identifying as liberal.’ Conservative representation is even worse today in the social sciences and humanities, where they have practically disappeared from many areas of inquiry. Nearly every recent survey of the university places the percentage of conservative and Republican professors in these fields in the single digits. Conservatives also tend to cluster in economics departments, leaving other disciplines with hardly any center-right thinkers… Professors are even less tolerant of evangelicals, whom they associate with social conservatism. Nearly 60% of anthropologists, 50% of literature professors, 39% of political scientists and sociologists, 34% of philosophy professors, and 29% of historians say they would be less inclined to hire evangelicals.” Notice the relationship between the rise of the liberal professor and the suppressing of the ‘prince of the covenant’.

A similar shift happened with cinema, leading to a New Hollywood. Wikipedia elaborates that “A defining film of the New Hollywood generation was Bonnie and Clyde (1967)… The cover story in Time magazine in December 1967 celebrated the movie and innovation in American New Wave cinema. This influential article by Stefan Kanfer claimed that Bonnie and Clyde represented a ‘New Cinema’ through its blurred genre lines, and disregard for honoured aspects of plot and motivation, and that ‘In both conception and execution, Bonnie and Clyde is a watershed picture, the kind that signals a new style, a new trend’… These initial successes paved the way for the studio to relinquish almost complete control to these innovative young filmmakers… These successes by the members of New Hollywood led each of them in turn to make more and more extravagant demands, both on the studio and eventually on the audience.”

And the ‘New Hollywood’ spread the countercultural movement to the masses. “The end of the production code enabled New Hollywood films to feature anti-establishment political themes, the use of rock music, and sexual freedom deemed ‘counter-cultural’ by the studios. The youth movement of the 1960s turned anti-heroes like Bonnie and Clyde and Cool Hand Luke into pop culture idols, and Life magazine called the characters in Easy Rider ‘part of the fundamental myth central to the counterculture of the late 1960s.’”

Looking at the deception, an anti-establishment professor is an inherent contradiction in terms. That is because the message of a professor is accepted precisely because a professor is an esteemed member of the academic establishment. Thus, the radical professor is using his social status to spread the message that one should reject social status. Similarly, countercultural cinema is also a contradiction in terms, because being against the norms of culture is being spread as a norm of culture.

I should clarify that being guided by the TMN of a general understanding to change MMNs of culture is not a contradiction in terms. However, the 1960s counterculture was not guided by general understanding, but rather driven by an aversion to existing cultural MMNs. Wikipedia describes the lack of Teacher understanding within academic trends. “As disenchantment with social institutions spread with the 1960s counterculture, alternative schools sprouted outside the local public school system. Funded by tuition and philanthropic grants, they were created by parents, teachers, and students in opposition to contemporaneous schooling practices across the United States and organized without central organization, usually small and grassroots with alternative curricula. Their philosophical influence stemmed from the counterculture… The definition and scope of schools self-classified as ‘free schools’ and their associated movement were never clearly delineated, and as such, there was a wide variation between schools. The movement did not subscribe to a single ideology, but its ‘free schools’ tended to fall into the binaries of either utopian cultural withdrawal from external concerns, or built on the legacy of freedom schools with direct political address of social injustices.” Summarizing, the ‘definition and scope’ of the schools was not ‘ clearly delineated’, indicating the absence of any ‘single ideology’. Instead, they were motivated either by rejecting or attacking existing societal MMNs.

In verse 24, the influence grows. “In tranquility and the rich, he will enter the province, and he will accomplish what his fathers did not, nor his fathers’ fathers.” (This sentence uses three literal translations from the footnotes.) Tranquility means ‘quietness, ease’. This word occurred previously in verse 20, which was interpreted as the nonviolent resistance of the civil rights movement. And the rich means literally ‘and in fatness’. The phrase is more literally, ‘in tranquility and in the fatnesses of a province, he will enter.’ Accomplish is the normal word for ‘do, make’.

Father is mentioned three times, and this is being interpreted as a reference to male technical thought. One of the characteristics of Western society is the triumph of technical thought, because almost every field has now turned into a technical specialization with its own technical rules and its own system of technical accreditation. ‘Father’ would refer to modern technical specialization, while ‘father’s father’ would probably represent the technical thinking of medieval scholasticism which preceded modern technical thought. These two forms of technical thinking both attempted to overturn core MMNs of religion, society, and culture, but neither succeeded. Scholasticism failed because it was based in absolute truth and absolute truth suppresses MMNs of personal identity rather than transforming them. In a similar manner, modern science uses objective thought, which ignores MMNs of personal identity.

Liberal academia succeeded in questioning these core MMNs through deconstructionism. Deconstructionism began as a theoretical analysis, championed by academics such as Derrida, who began writing in the 1960s. Wikipedia summarizes that “In its simplest form it can be regarded as a criticism of Platonism and the idea of true forms, or essences, which take precedence over appearances… Deconstruction argues that language, especially ideal concepts such as truth and justice, is irreducibly complex, unstable, or impossible to determine. Many debates in continental philosophy surrounding ontology, epistemology, ethics, aesthetics, hermeneutics, and philosophy of language refer to Derrida’s beliefs.”

Translating this into cognitive language, deconstructionism attacks the idea of rational Teacher thought. Teacher thought comes up with simple statements that summarize the essence of Perceiver categories. Deconstructionism asserts that Mercy experiences are too complicated to be formed into Perceiver categories and summarized by Teacher theories. I suggested earlier that Platonic forms emerge within Mercy thought as an indirect result of Teacher understanding, and that Platonic forms can act as goals for concrete thought. Deconstructionism denies the existence of Platonic forms, which makes it impossible for concrete thought to be guided by visions of a better reality. This leads to the contradiction of promoting the general theory that there are no general theories. Derrida tried to avoid this contradiction by refusing to define deconstructionism. Quoting from Wikipedia, “There have been problems defining deconstruction. Derrida claimed that all of his essays were attempts to define what deconstruction is, and that deconstruction is necessarily complicated and difficult to explain since it actively criticises the very language needed to explain it.”

The average person has not heard of Derrida, but the entire world has been affected by the postmodernism that grew out of deconstructionism. Wikipedia explains that “Postmodernism is an intellectual stance or mode of discourse defined by an attitude of skepticism toward what it describes as the grand narratives and ideologies of modernism, as well as opposition to epistemic certainty and the stability of meaning. It questions or criticizes viewpoints associated with Enlightenment rationality dating back to the 17th century, and is characterized by irony, eclecticism, and its rejection of the ‘universal validity’ of binary oppositions, stable identity, hierarchy, and categorization. Postmodernism is associated with relativism and a focus on ideology in the maintenance of economic and political power. Postmodernists are generally ‘skeptical of explanations which claim to be valid for all groups, cultures, traditions, or races,’ and describe truth as relative… Postmodernism is often associated with schools of thought such as deconstruction and post-structuralism.” Summarizing, postmodernism rejects scientific thought, opposes Perceiver facts, and it interprets all general Teacher theories as ideologies imposed upon the general population by some group that has social status. (One could, of course, interpret postmodernism itself as an ideology imposed upon the general population by academic scholars who have social status.)

Verse 24 begins with the phrase ‘In tranquility and in the fatnesses of a province, he will enter.’ A province is one part of a kingdom. Similarly, postmodernism has not affected all of academic thought. Mathematics, economics, technology, and the hard sciences have been largely unaffected by postmodernism. In contrast, postmodernism has become the de facto standard of the social sciences. That is because math, economics, technology, and the hard sciences are all governed by TMNs of rational understanding. In contrast, the soft sciences were ‘fat’ in the sense that they lacked the rigor of technical thought held together by a sufficiently integrated theory. This conquering of the soft sciences by postmodernism has happened ‘in tranquility’. That is because actual content is seldom discussed or debated. Instead, facts and theories are ignored as inherently invalid, and the soft sciences have largely capitulated without a fight.

Looking at this from a different perspective, the ‘tranquility and fatness’ of Western civilization makes postmodern thought possible. People in previous centuries lived a precarious existence, never knowing when famine, disease, or some other disaster would strike. When the facts of nature regularly intervene in civilization to disrupt and kill, then one will naturally believe that solid facts exist. Modern civilization has succeeded in protecting the average person from most natural cause-and-effect, making it possible for the average person to ignore cause-and-effect and pretend that everything is based in people and their opinions. In the words of Wikipedia, “Post-war affluence allowed much of the counterculture generation to move beyond the provision of the material necessities of life that had preoccupied their Depression-era parents.”

Stated simply, the average modern citizen assumes that milk and eggs come from stores and are sold by people, and does not fully realize that milk comes from cows and eggs from chickens. For such a person, the grocery store with its clerks is the reality, while the cow and the chicken are vague abstract notions. Thus, the ‘tranquility and fatness’ of the consumer society makes postmodern thought possible. The very fact that technology with its deep grasp of natural law is so pervasive allows the consumer to pretend that natural law does not exist.

Verse 24 continues by describing the victory of postmodernism. “He will distribute plunder, spoils, and possessions among them, and he will devise his schemes against strongholds, but only for a time.” Plunder means ‘spoil, booty’. Spoils means ‘prey, spoil, plunder, booty’. Possessions means ‘property, goods’. And distribute means ‘to scatter’.

Postmodern thought can question, but it does not provide anything. In the words of Wikipedia, “Linguist Noam Chomsky has argued that postmodernism is meaningless because it adds nothing to analytical or empirical knowledge. He asks why postmodernist intellectuals won’t respond like people in other fields when asked: ‘Seriously, what are the principles of their theories, on what evidence are they based, what do they explain that wasn’t already obvious, etc?’” Thus, postmodernism turns into a scattering of spoils, in which historical authorities are belittled and their intellectual wealth is scattered. The focus on plunder and spoils also illustrates that postmodernism is not creating its own wealth, but rather scattering the wealth that has been gathered by others.

Finally, scattering ‘among them’ portrays the way that postmodernism scatters intellectual wealth, because it takes words with meanings and attributes these meanings to a nameless ‘them’. Wikipedia explains how this expresses itself in the deconstructionism of Derrida. “Complete meaning is always ‘differential’ and postponed in language; there is never a moment when meaning is complete and total. A simple example would consist of looking up a given word in a dictionary, then proceeding to look up the words found in that word’s definition, etc., also comparing with older dictionaries. Such a process would never end.” This is cognitively significant, because abstract technical thought is based in precise definitions, and technical thought assumes that it is possible to work with certainty within some specialization. Deconstructionism attacks the fundamental building blocks of abstract technical thought by asserting that precise definitions are not possible, especially if one restricts thought to some limited specialization. Thus, deconstructionism is a ‘scattering to them’ of the ‘property and goods’ of thought that make abstract technical thought possible.

Continuing with verse 24, devise actually means ‘to think’. And scheme means ‘thought, device’ and is based upon this same word ‘to think’. These two words are only used in Daniel in this verse and in the next verse. Stronghold means ‘fortification’ and was previously used in verse 11, where it was interpreted as the German university system. Thus, it makes sense to assume that the fortification in verse 24 is also referring to a fortification of thought such as the university system. And it makes sense to interpret verse 24 in terms of thinking and abstract technical thought. Putting this together, verse 24 is saying that the intellectual attack upon the university system will only continue for a while.

Looking at this cognitively, suppose that some academic expert, such as Derrida (or Michel Foucault), uses academic language to question the inherent validity of Perceiver facts and Teacher theories. This type of academic dialogue cannot continue because one is using academic language to question the very existence of academic thought—one is using abstract technical thought to attack the foundations of abstract technical thought. Therefore, as verse 24 says, the thinking of thoughts against the fortress of academia will only continue for a while.

Violent Protests and the Silent Majority 11:25

Verse 25 describes a change in approach. “And he will stir up his strength and heart against the king of the South with a large army.” The forces of the South were last mentioned in verse 15, which we interpreted as objective thought being attacked by Nazism. Stir up means ‘to rouse oneself, awake’ and is found one other time in Daniel in 11:2. We interpreted that as the people awakening from oppression and rebelling against traditional leadership in the French Revolution. In verse 25, what is being awoken is strength and heart. And this is being stirred up against the king of the South. Looking at this cognitively, subjective thought is gaining the ability and the Mercy status required to challenge objective thought.

Looking at this more carefully, one cannot simply walk up to some technical specialist and say ‘You do not know what you are talking about’. If one attempts to do so, the response will be derision and rejection: ‘Who do you think you are to question the expert?’ But once academic experts, such as Derrida or Foucault, have successfully questioned academia, then this opens the door for the average person to gather the strength and heart required to walk up to the technical expert and declare that his supposed understanding is merely ideology. This can be described as an awakening, because the average person who uses subjective thought is awakening from a feeling of submission to academic authority. And this awakening is happening in ‘strength and heart’ because it is expressing itself through concrete action and subjective Mercy feelings and not with facts and theories. Summarizing, subjective thought is not having an academic discussion with the experts. Instead, subjective thought is asserting the personal feeling that expertise does not exist.

Verse 25 says that this attack on the king of the South happens with a great army. The phrase ‘great army’ was previously used in 11:13, which was interpreted as post-World War I nationalism and rearmament. The term ‘great army’ makes sense when applied to the 1960s protests because the non-violent civil rights protests turned into massive, violent demonstrations against the establishment. This widespread violence was first seen in the Watts riot of 1965. Quoting from Wikipedia, “While arresting a young man for drunk driving, police officers argued with the suspect’s mother before onlookers. The spark triggered massive destruction of property through six days of rioting in Los Angeles… With black militancy on the rise, ghetto residents directed acts of anger at the police. Black residents growing tired of police brutality continued to riot. Some young people joined groups such as the Black Panthers, whose popularity was based in part on their reputation for confronting police officers.” This culminated in the ‘long, hot summer of 1967’, which ‘refers to the 159 race riots that erupted across the United States in the summer of 1967… The most destructive riots of the summer took place in July, in Newark, New Jersey, and Detroit, Michigan, and many contemporary newspapers headlines describe them as ‘battles’.”

Similar student protests were happening throughout the world, culminating in the ‘protests of 1968’. Wikipedia summarizes that “In most Western European countries, the protest movement was dominated by students. The most spectacular manifestation of these was the May 1968 protests in France, in which students linked up with wildcat strikes of up to ten million workers, and for a few days the movement seemed capable of overthrowing the government. In many other countries, struggles against dictatorships, political tensions and authoritarian rule were also marked by protests in 1968.”

Verse 25 continues by describing a counterattack. “So the king of the South will mobilize an extremely large and mighty army for war; but he will not stand, because schemes will be devised against him.” Mobilize is the reflexive form of ‘to stir up, engage in strife’. The same phrase ‘great army’ that was used earlier in verse 25 is repeated, but the additional phrase ‘very mighty’ is added, and mighty means ‘mighty, numerous’. War means ‘battle, war’. Verse 25 does not say that war actually occurs. Instead, it describes stirring up a very numerous army for war.

The reference to war is appropriate because many governments responded with military force to the protests of 1968. Wikipedia summarizes that “As the waves of protests of the 1960s intensified to a new high in 1968, repressive governments through widespread police crack downs, shootings, executions and even massacres marked social conflicts in Mexico, Brazil, Spain, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and China. In West Berlin, Rome, London, Paris, Italy, many American cities, and Argentina, labor unions and students played major roles and also suffered political repression.”

This mobilization was seen politically in America in Richard Nixon’s successful appeal to the ‘silent majority’ in 1969. Wikipedia summarizes that “The term was popularized by U.S. President Richard Nixon in a televised address on November 3, 1969, in which he said, ‘And so tonight—to you, the great silent majority of my fellow Americans—I ask for your support.’” Wikipedia adds that “Nixon’s silent majority referred mainly to the older generation… The Silent Majority was mostly populated by blue collar white people who did not take an active part in politics: suburban, exurban and rural middle class voters. They did, in some cases, support the conservative policies of many politicians. According to columnist Kenneth Crawford, ‘Nixon’s forgotten men should not be confused with Roosevelt’s,’ adding that ‘Nixon’s are comfortable, housed, clad and fed, who constitute the middle stratum of society. But they aspire to more and feel menaced by those who have less.’” This was a ‘very numerous army’ because it included the majority of citizens. But it was an ‘army of the South’, because it was composed of citizens who were not driven strongly by mental networks, but rather lived within the objective facts of middle-class existence. This great army was stirred up because it felt that the facts of middle-class existence were being threatened by the counter-culture. adds that “This silent majority swept President Richard Nixon into office in 1968. Almost immediately, Nixon began to dismantle the welfare state that had fostered such resentment. He abolished as many parts of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty as he could, and he made a show of his resistance to mandatory school desegregation plans such as busing… In general, though, Nixon’s policies favored the interests of the middle class people who felt slighted by the Great Society of the 1960s.”

The second part of verse 25 indicates that this conservative response will only be temporarily successful. The phrase ‘schemes shall be devised against him’ contains three words in Hebrew: The two words think and thoughts used in verse 24 are repeated as well as the word ‘against him’. This suggests that the theoretical attack on traditional authority described in verse 24 will continue in verse 25. This continuation can be seen in the policies of Nixon. Wikipedia explains that “One of his top advisers was liberal Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who said that ‘Nixon mostly opted for liberal policies, merely clothing them [...] in conservative rhetoric’. In addition to support for such liberal causes as the arts and the environment, he supported liberalization of laws against recreational drugs. To the astonishment of conservatives, he imposed wage and price controls to counteract inflation. Noam Chomsky, who often attacks liberalism from the left, has called Nixon ‘in many respects the last liberal president’… The 1965–1974 period was a major liberal activist era in congress, with the Democratic-led congress during the presidency of Richard Nixon continuing to produce liberal domestic policies.” Similarly, we saw a few paragraphs earlier that the counterculture spread to the rest of the world during the 1970s.

More generally, the countercultural thinking of the 1960s ended up spreading further during the 1970s. In the words of Wikipedia, “According to notable UK Underground and counterculture author Barry Miles, ‘It seemed to me that the Seventies was when most of the things that people attribute to the sixties really happened: this was the age of extremes, people took more drugs, had longer hair, weirder clothes, had more sex, protested more violently and encountered more opposition from the establishment. It was the era of sex and drugs and rock’n’roll, as Ian Dury said. The countercultural explosion of the 1960s really only involved a few thousand people in the UK and perhaps ten times that in the USA – largely because of opposition to the Vietnam war, whereas in the Seventies the ideas had spread out across the world.’”

At the academic level, a study in 1969 “surveyed 60,000 academics in multiple fields of study at 303 institutions about their political views… about 46% of professors described themselves as liberal, 27% described themselves as moderates, and 28% described themselves as conservative. They also reported that faculty in the humanities and social sciences tended to be the most liberal, while those in ‘applied professional schools such as nursing and home economics’ and in agriculture were the most conservative.” And it is the humanities and social sciences that have had the greatest impact upon the thinking of society. More generally, “Research since the 1970s has consistently found that professors are more liberal and Democratic than the general population.” Thus, at the level of ‘thinking’ and ‘thought’, liberalism has tended to dominate American society since the 1970s. Therefore, it is accurate to say that the objective king of the South will not stand, because ‘thinking will be thought against him’.

Intellectual Triumph of Postmodernism 11:26

Verses 26 adds more details. “Those who eat his choice food will break him.” The commentators state that this is still referring to the king of the South. Choice food means ‘portion, delicacies’. It is only found in Daniel and was used five times in chapter 1 to describe the ‘king’s choice food’ that Daniel and his friends chose not to eat. Destroy means ‘to break, break in pieces’. Looking at this symbolically, food represents intellectual food. Thus, ‘choice food’ would represent the words and research of academia, and ‘those who eat his choice food’ would represent fellow members of academia. These are eating with the king of the South, which represents objective thought. Putting this together, the objective thinking of academia will be broken into pieces by members of academia.

We looked earlier at the deconstructionism of Derrida and how it turned into postmodernism. I suggest that verse 26 is describing the intellectual triumph of postmodernism. The Encyclopaedia Britannica describes this broader victory, mentioning Derrida, Foucault, and another French philosopher. “Foucault’s ideas gave rise in the 1970s and ’80s to philosophical postmodernism, a movement characterized by broad epistemological skepticism and ethical subjectivism, a general suspicion of reason, and an acute sensitivity to the role of ideology in asserting and maintaining political and economic power. Postmodernists attacked the attempt by Enlightenment philosophers and others to discover allegedly objective moral values that could serve as a standard for assessing different political systems or for measuring political progress from one historical period to another… In La Condition postmoderne and other writings, Lyotard declared his suspicion of what he called ‘grand narratives’—putatively rational, overarching accounts, such as Marxism and liberalism, of how the world is or ought to be. He asserted that political conflicts in contemporary societies reflect the clash of incommensurable values and perspectives and are therefore not rationally decidable.” Expanding upon what was said before, interdisciplinary truth is being attacked—Perceiver facts that can connect one specialization with another by ‘serving as a standard for assessing different political systems or for measuring political progress’. And this attack on Perceiver truth is focusing upon political truth that interconnects mental networks of human identity and society. The result is to question the existence of general Teacher theory—grand narratives that can act as overarching accounts. Notice also that this attack on objective academic thought is happening at the level of the ‘choice food’ of philosophy.

Going further, technical thought naturally subdivides itself into technical specializations. When all attempts to integrate technical specializations are declared as invalid, then this results inevitably in the ‘breaking up’ of objective thought into distinct specializations that share the same physical campus but no longer talk to one another.

Verse 26 continues, “and his army will be swept away, and many will fall down slain.” Swept away means ‘to overflow, rinse or wash off’. It was seen previously in verse 10. Fall down means ‘to fall, lie’, and slain is used once in Daniel and literally means ‘pierced’. Water represents Mercy experiences. Therefore, ‘being swept away’ would represent being rejected at the Mercy level of experiences. Going further, ‘rinsing or washing off’ implies that this rejection is viewed as eliminating something that is dirty or unclean. In the words of one author, “Initially, postmodernism gained influence in the social sciences and humanities, which produced it to begin with. The new social sciences had an explicit social progress agenda. In itself, this might not be objectionable, although it brought politics (or at least policy) directly into science. More importantly, it created two main risks: the specter of academic activism disguised as science, and the risk of spill-over to the natural and biological sciences.” Looking at this cognitively, if all general theories that apply to people are merely ideologies being imposed upon the population by some power group—as postmodernism claims, then these power groups should be stopped from imposing their ideologies, especially when these ideologies are masquerading as academic theories. Thus, postmodern scholarship naturally turns into the social activism of ‘cleansing society of its evil overlords’.

This has become such a pervasive viewpoint that it is necessary to add some explanation. Mental symmetry attempts to define and pursue the positive goal of mental wholeness. Part of the struggle to reach mental wholeness includes questioning inadequate MMNs of society, influence, and power. Thus, social activism can lead in the direction of mental wholeness as long as MMNs that are inconsistent with the structure of the mind are being questioned. For instance, the idea that whites are inherently superior to blacks has nothing to do with the structure of the mind. There may be cultural differences between blacks and whites that need to be examined, but this is independent of skin color. Therefore, questioning racial prejudice is consistent with pursuing mental wholeness. Similarly, suggesting that men are inherently superior to women is also inconsistent with mental wholeness, because mental wholeness requires both male and female thought. However, questioning the distinction between male and female thought does not lead to mental wholeness, because the mental networks of female thought are not the same as the technical thinking of male thought. In contrast, mental wholeness requires the existence of both mental networks and technical thought. Summarizing, one fundamental problem of social protests is that they follow the negative strategy of attacking existing MMNs of society rather than pursuing the positive strategy of building Teacher understanding. Postmodernism makes it impossible to follow a positive strategy because it declares that all supposed Teacher understanding is merely some MMN of power masquerading as Teacher understanding. This topic will be discussed further when looking at the abomination of desolation in verse 31.

Continuing with verse 26, Wikipedia describes the many academic disciplines that have fallen down as a result of postmodernism. “Postmodern critical approaches gained popularity in the 1980s and 1990s, and have been adopted in a variety of academic and theoretical disciplines, including cultural studies, philosophy of science, economics, linguistics, architecture, feminist theory, and literary criticism, as well as art movements in fields such as literature, contemporary art, and music.” ‘Falling down’ is an appropriate term, because the basic premise of postmodernism is that academic scholarship is fundamentally flawed. Therefore, postmodern academic scholarship tends to exhibit itself as many words that say nothing, or else as ‘academic activism disguised as science’.

Wikipedia describes the postmodern tendency to use meaningless jargon. “Christopher Hitchens in his book Why Orwell Matters advocates for simple, clear, and direct expression of ideas, and the postmodernists wear people down by boredom and semi-literate prose. Hitchens also criticized a postmodernist volume, ‘The Johns Hopkins Guide to Literary Theory and Criticism’: ‘The French, as it happens, once evolved an expression for this sort of prose: la langue de bois, the wooden tongue, in which nothing useful or enlightening can be said, but in which various excuses for the arbitrary and the dishonest can be offered. (This book) is a pointer to the abysmal state of mind that prevails in so many of our universities.’”

‘Piercing’ does not attack a person, but rather pokes a hole in some core vital organ. Similarly, postmodern thought did not take over the social sciences and the humanities by disproving existing theories. Instead, postmodern thought poked a hole in the core concepts of truth and theory, causing the entire structure of thought to collapse.

Deceptive Integration 11:27

Verse 27 describes the spread of academic deception. “As for both kings, their hearts will be intent on evil, and they will speak lies to each other at the same table.” Evil is only found once in the Bible as a noun and means to ‘do mischief’. Table is the normal word for ‘a table’ but is only used once in Daniel. Lie means ‘a lie, falsehood, deceptive thing’. The same is simply the Hebrew word for ‘one’. Thus, both kings are speaking lies at one table.

The heart refers to personal identity in Mercy thought. Verse 27 says more literally that ‘the hearts of the kings to evil’. This suggests not so much the presence of great evil, but rather that people are being emotionally drawn to a path that heads in the direction of evil.

Looking first at the emotional side of mental networks, Wikipedia describes this ‘rise of the me generation’ that happened in the 1970s. “The Civil Rights Movement gave rebellious young people serious goals to work towards. Cultural experimentation was justified as being directed toward spiritual or intellectual enlightenment. The mid to late 1970s, in contrast, were a time of increased economic crisis and disillusionment with idealistic politics among the young, particularly after the resignation of Richard Nixon and the end of the Vietnam War. Unapologetic hedonism became acceptable among the young… The deprivations of the Depression had taught that generation to work hard, save money and not spend it, and to cherish family and community ties. Loyalty to institutions, traditional religious faiths, and other common bonds were what that generation considered to be the cultural foundations of their country. Gen X’ers gradually abandoned those values in large numbers, a development that was entrenched during the 1970s. The 1970s have been described as a transitional era when the self-help of the 1960s became self-gratification, and eventually devolved into the selfishness of the 1980s.” This does not describe great evil, but rather an emotional decision to pursue the ‘heart’ of personal identity apart from standards of morality. And the idea of ‘hearts toward evil’ can especially be seen in the last sentence of that quote, with self-gratification turning into selfishness.

A similar ‘heading to evil’ occurred with American network television. Wikipedia notes that “As the 1970s began, the Big Three TV networks were rapidly re-engineering their lineups, noting that existing programs were not attracting the youth audience. Most existing programs still operated on paradigms established in the 1950s, and some shows had literally been on the air since the dawn of TV broadcasting in the late 1940s and early 1950s… To reflect the new social trends, television changed dramatically with more urban and edgy settings, and replaced the popular rural/country wholesome look of the 1950s and 1960s, seen as outmoded and unable to connect with young, educated urban audiences… By the mid-to-late 1970s, ‘jiggle television’—programs oriented toward sexual gratification and bawdy humor and situations such as Charlie’s Angels, The Love Boat, and Three’s Company—became popular.”

Turning now to the objective realm, the objective world of economics also experienced a major downward shift in direction—a ‘heading to evil’—in the 1970s. Wikipedia summarizes that “historians have increasingly portrayed the 1970s as a ‘pivot of change’ in world history, focusing especially on the economic upheavals that followed the end of the postwar economic boom.” Looking at this economic shift in more detail, “This period is also known for ‘stagflation’, a phenomenon in which inflation and unemployment steadily increased. It led to double-digit interest rates that rose to unprecedented levels… The economic problems of the 1970s would result in a sluggish cynicism replacing the optimistic attitudes of the 1950s and 1960s and a distrust of government and technology.” A movement from optimism to cynicism, combined with growing distrust indicates hearts ‘moving to evil’.

Verse 27 adds that they are both ‘speaking lies’ but they are ‘at one table’. If these two kings represent objective and subjective thought, then this means that these two forms of thought are interacting with one another, but not being honest with one another. The 1950s had been characterized by optimism and prosperity. The average person felt that the objective gadgets and knowledge of new technology would bring subjective happiness, and sought to find subjective fulfillment in the traditional facts and objects of society. This optimism was still present in the 1970s, but it no longer had any basis. Using the language of verse 27, objective and subjective thought were still sitting at the same table, but they were now spouting lies.

Looking first at the objective realm of the economy, traditional Western industrialization was about to be replaced by Asian manufacturing. Quoting from Wikipedia, “The 1970s were perhaps the worst decade of most industrialized countries’ economic performance since the Great Depression… U.S. manufacturing industries began to decline as a result, with the United States running its last trade surplus (as of 2009) in 1975… Great Britain also experienced considerable economic turmoil during the decade as outdated industries proved unable to compete with Japanese and German wares… In Eastern Europe, Soviet-style command economies began showing signs of stagnation, in which successes were persistently dogged by setbacks.” More generally, “The realization that oil reserves were not endless and technological development was not sustainable without potentially harming the environment ended the belief in limitless progress that had existed since the 19th century.”

Turning to the subjective, one can see the ‘lying at the same table’ in 1970s culture. This is evident, for instance, in fashion. On the one hand, the fashion was bright. On the other hand, much of it was dumb. This is epitomized by the polyester leisure suit. Quoting from Wikipedia, “The leisure suit height of popularity was around the mid to late 1970s, but fell from fashion in the very early 1980s. Today it is commonly considered emblematic of 1970s American kitsch.” Looking at this more generally, “In the early 1970s, Vogue proclaimed ‘There are no rules in the fashion game now’ due to overproduction flooding the market with cheap synthetic clothing. Common items included mini skirts, bell-bottoms popularized by hippies, vintage clothing from the 1950s and earlier, and the androgynous glam rock and disco styles that introduced platform shoes, bright colors, glitter, and satin.”

A similar combination of bright-but-dumb can also be seen in many of the television programs of that era. On the one hand, they are full of light—literally, because they use bright colors and all the colors of the rainbow. But this brightness was actually a ‘heading to evil’, because TV shows and movies have gotten increasingly dark, both literally and metaphorically. Even the gamut of colors has shrunk in order to emphasize complementary pairs, typically leaving only patches of orange and blue amidst a gloom of general darkness. On the other hand, the typical TV show of that era was dumb, with implausible plots, cheesy science, and both intellectual and emotional vacuity. (Yes, I know that the 1970s had some intelligent TV shows. But there were many shows that were very dumb.) For instance, one can see a portrayal of ‘lying at the same table’ in the 1976 movie Logan’s Run. On the one hand, the movie is set in a youthful paradise of sci-fi technology, in which objective technology and subjective identity are married together in blissful harmony. On the other hand, the society is a total lie, with everyone being condemned to die at the age of 30 under the guise of ‘being renewed’.

Verse 27 finishes by describing the temporary success of this lying. “But it will not succeed, because the end is still to come at the appointed time.” Succeed means to ‘advance, prosper’. The word appointed time will appear three times in the next verses, in verses 27, 29, and 35. In each case something is coming to an end at the appointed time. These three terms are significant because Daniel 11 only corresponds with Jewish history up to about verse 33. This implies that the final ‘appointed time’ mentioned in verse 35 did not happen, and the beginning of this essay explored that alternative. Saying this more clearly, if society is to be fully transformed, then core mental networks need to be challenged, and that will only happen if these various trends are followed through to their conclusion.

Looking at this in more detail, the 1970s was supposedly an era of personal choice. The Wikipedia article on fashion in the 1970s opens with the sentence “Fashion in the 1970s was about individuality.” Similarly, the article on the 1970s summarizes that “Novelist Tom Wolfe coined the term ‘“Me” decade’ in his essay ‘The “Me” Decade and the Third Great Awakening’, published by New York Magazine in August 1976 referring to the 1970s. The term describes a general new attitude of Americans towards atomized individualism and away from communitarianism, in clear contrast with the 1960s.” But personal choice is driven by mental networks of desires that are more basic than choice. Saying this another way, Contributor thought, which makes decisions, occurs after Exhorter thought, which generates motivation based upon mental networks. Thus, a society that focuses upon individuality and free will actually find that it is being driven by deeper motivations that lie beyond the awareness or control of personal choice.

However, free will becomes maximized when the mind becomes driven by conflicting core mental networks. Normally, the core mental networks of a society are sufficiently unified to ensure that free will can only make minor adjustments within the stream of society. But when people’s minds contain conflicting core mental networks, then it becomes possible to make major changes by choosing to follow one set of core mental networks rather than the other. This situation arose in the 1970s, because the new mental networks of the liberal counterculture became an accepted alternative to the old mental networks of conservative Christian morality. Those who live in such an era will think that it is normal for people to have free will, but such a level of free will is actually quite rare. And it is also temporary, because the set of core mental networks that are chosen will grow at the expense of the mental networks that are rejected, gradually closing the window upon free will.

Concluding, ‘the end is still to come at the appointed time’ indicates the interaction between free will and core mental networks. If society is to become transformed, then free will has to extend to the level of challenging core mental networks. The end has to come at the appointed time. But if free will extends to this level, then free will can also be used to thwart the path of personal transformation. The thesis of this essay is that this happened in Jewish history, causing the divine plan to become derailed. Therefore, this divine plan had to be repeated, because the end still has to come at the appointed time. The primary difference between the Jewish era and the modern era is the existence of science and technology. There was not enough science and technology during the time of the Maccabees to force society to finish the path of transformation. In contrast, I suggest that the presence of modern science and technology ensures that current society will follow the path completely. That is because scientific thought ensures that MMNs of religious and cultural preservation will not eventually have the upper hand, as was the case in Jewish history. And technology ensures that postmodern thought will become able to question all existing moral and societal standards.

Consumer Technology 11:28

In verse 27, objective and subjective thought were sitting at the same table. In verse 28, a split emerges between objective and subjective. “Then he will return to his land with much property; but his heart will be set against the holy covenant.” Property means ‘property, goods’ and land means ‘earth, land’. Verse 29 makes it clear that the ‘he’ in verse 28 refers to the king of the North. Looking at the first phrase symbolically, subjective thought is returning to its own realm with significant objective property. Normally, property and goods belong to the objective realm of facts and objects. But subjective thought here is taking many objects from the realm of objective thought, transferring them to the realm of subjective thought and acting as if they belong to subjective thought.

This transference of objectivity technology to the realm of the subjective was epitomized by the development of the personal computer. Wikipedia summarizes that “The history of the personal computer as mass-market consumer electronic devices effectively began in 1977 with the introduction of microcomputers, although some mainframe and minicomputers had been applied as single-user systems much earlier. A personal computer is one intended for interactive individual use, as opposed to a mainframe computer where the end user’s requests are filtered through operating staff, or a time sharing system in which one large processor is shared by many individuals. After the development of the microprocessor, individual personal computers were low enough in cost that they eventually became affordable consumer goods.”

Consumer computers also appeared in the guise of video games. Quoting from Wikipedia, “The History of Computing Project places the golden age of video games between 1971 and 1983, covering the ‘mainstream appearance of video games as a consumer market’ and ‘the rise of dedicated hardware systems and the origin of multi-game cartridge based systems’. 1971 was chosen as an earlier start date by the project for two reasons: the creator of Pong filed a pivotal patent regarding video game technology, and it was the release of the first arcade video game machine, Computer Space.”

Notice that in both cases, computing devices that were considered the epitome of objective science were transferred to the realm of personal experiences where they became a source of subjective enjoyment driven by mental networks. The personal computer was significant because it was the first time that objective technology was capable of creating imaginary worlds that were sufficiently complex to attract the attention of mental networks in the average person. Saying this more simply, personal computers became capable of creating alternate realities.

A similar statement can be made about the videocassette recorder or VCR. Wikipedia relates that the “VCR started gaining mass market traction in 1975… The VCR started to become a mass market consumer product; by 1979 there were three competing technical standards using mutually incompatible tape cassettes.” The VCR was another example of objective technology being brought into the subjective realm of the home and becoming a source of subjective mental networks.”

Verse 28 continues, “but his heart will be set against the holy covenant, and he will take action and then return to his own land.” The word covenant is used to describe the covenant between God and man. It was used back in verse 22 when referring to the ‘prince of the covenant’ and will be used four times in verses 28-32. ‘Prince of the covenant’ was interpreted as referring to Christian theology from the perspective of emotional and societal status. In verse 22, Christianity was being rejected because it was ‘part of the establishment’. Verse 28 refers to the covenant as holy, which means ‘apartness, sacredness’. This is the first reference to ‘holy’ in chapter 11, the phrase ‘holy covenant’ will be repeated twice in verse 30, and ‘holy mountain’ will be mentioned in verse 45.

Absolute truth is ultimately based in the idea of holiness. For instance, the Christian fundamentalist believes that the Bible is a special book that is different than other books because it was written by holy individuals who have great Mercy status and who were different than normal people. Similarly, a student views a textbook as a special book that is different than other books because it was written by professors who have great Mercy status and who are different than normal people.

In verse 28, this idea of specialness and holiness is being questioned at an emotional level, because ‘his heart is against the holy covenant’. I suggest that a cognitive similarity will cause such emotional questioning to naturally follow the spread of technology such as personal computers. On the one hand, studying the Bible will lead to the formation of Platonic forms of a heaven (or future world) of idyllic perfection. If absolute truth talks about moral principles that apply to personal identity, then this future idealized world will be viewed as a possible home for personal identity. But if absolute truth is viewed as holy and separate from the facts of normal reality, then this heaven of future perfection will also be viewed as having nothing to do with normal reality.

Personal computers, video games, and VCRs have a similar cognitive effect because Teacher theories of science are being used to construct objects that are capable of creating virtual worlds within which subjective identity can temporarily exist. Thus, instead of imagining that someday I will die and go to heaven, I can turn on the computer and pretend to be some hero in an imaginary kingdom. People will naturally find the virtual reality of computers more emotionally attractive than the heaven of Christianity, because computer-generated alternate reality can be seen, and it is possible to interact with this alternate reality now. This will cause people’s hearts to turn away from the holy covenant.

This shift can also be seen in the word-of-faith prosperity gospel that emerged in charismatic Christianity in the 1970s. Quoting from Wikipedia, “Although nearly all of the healing evangelists of the 1940s and 1950s taught that faith could bring financial rewards, a new prosperity-oriented teaching developed in the 1970s that differed from the one taught by Pentecostal evangelists of the 1950s. This ‘Positive Confession’ or ‘Word of Faith’ movement taught that a Christian with faith can speak into existence anything consistent with the will of God.” Notice how ‘you can get things from God’ is being expanded into ‘you can live in a virtual reality through God’.

Continuing with verse 28, the last phrase is simply three words: the normal word do, make followed by and turn back and to his land. (Remember that prepositions are usually letters that are added as prefixes to the Hebrew words.) Thus, the emphasis is upon performing physical action and then placing this within the subjective realm of Mercy experiences. Applying this to the personal computer, all computers are controlled by central processing units which turn sequences of instructions into sequences of actions. A computer does not just sit there; it performs actions based upon instructions. Similarly, one does not merely observe a computer but rather interacts with the computer by performing actions. But a computer game performs actions in a manner that returns to the subjective realm of mental networks. For instance, pressing a key on a computer keyboard may be interpreted visually as wielding a sword against some imaginary foe on the computer screen. Summarizing, using a personal computer or playing a videogame can be interpreted at several levels as performing actions and then returning to the land of subjective emotions.

It is quite possible that the interpretation of verse 28 extends beyond personal computers and video games. The general principle, I suggest, is that subjective emotions are taking advantage of a naïve form of objective thought, in which objects are being designed but not marketed. This general principle applied to the personal computers of that day. For instance, the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center is one famous example of such a juxtaposition. Quoting from Wikipedia, “Xerox has been heavily criticized (particularly by business historians) for failing to properly commercialize and profitably exploit PARC’s innovations. A favorite example is the graphical user interface (GUI), initially developed at PARC for the Alto and then commercialized as the Xerox Star by the Xerox Systems Development Department. Although very significant in terms of its influence on future system design, it is deemed a failure because it only sold approximately 25,000 units. Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft later stated that the Xerox graphical interface influenced both Microsoft and Apple, and Steve Jobs of Apple said that ‘Xerox could have owned the entire computer industry, could have been the IBM of the nineties, could have been the Microsoft of the nineties.’” Summarizing, both Microsoft and Apple got many of their initial ideas from visiting Xerox and being shown the advanced features of the Xerox computers. In other words, the inventors of GUI computer technology allowed this computer technology to be taken back to the subjective realm of the king of the North.

Consumer Business 11:29-30

Verse 29 describes another foray of subjective emotions into the realm of objective thought. Notice that this next incursion happens ‘at the appointed time’. “At the appointed time he will return and come into the South, but it will not happen as the first and as the last.” This accurately translates the original Hebrew. Presumably, this intermediate event will not be like the previous one just discussed where the subjective was able to appropriate devices from the objective, or like the final event that happens at the end of this chapter.

Verse 30 says what will be different this second time. “For ships of Kittim will come against him; therefore he will withdraw in fear and will return and curse the holy covenant and take action.” The phrase ‘and will return and curse the holy covenant and take action’ is exactly the same five word Hebrew phrase that was found in verse 28. Kittim means ‘making the firm lumps or blocks, make compact’ and refers to the island of Cyprus. Fear is the passive of ‘broken, be grieved, make sad’. And curse means ‘to be indignant’. Putting this together, the first step is ‘and ships from Cyprus will come against him’. This is followed by the response of ‘return and be broken or grieved’. Then the same five word response of verse 28 is repeated: ‘do against the holy covenant and return’.

Looking at this symbolically, ships have been interpreted in other essays as representing organizations, because they are man-made structures that float upon the water of experience, making it possible to act as if one is upon the dry land of rational thought. In addition, a ship is crewed by a group of people who have to function in a coordinated manner. We saw in the previous verses that subjective thought was basically able to walk in to the laboratories of objective thought and steal the ideas. Giving another example, the idea of paying for computer software was not the norm back in the 1970s. One of the major transition points was when Bill Gates, the cofounder of Microsoft, wrote a famous open letter in 1976. Quoting from Wikipedia, “The Open Letter to Hobbyists is a 1976 open letter written by Bill Gates, the co-founder of Microsoft, to early personal computer hobbyists, in which Gates expresses dismay at the rampant software piracy taking place in the hobbyist community, particularly with regard to his company’s software. In the letter, Gates expressed frustration with most computer hobbyists who were using his company’s Altair BASIC software without having paid for it.”

Translating verse 30 into cognitive language, subjective thought will attempt again to make a raid upon the objective. But the situation will be different this time, because organizations will get in the way and prevent the wholesale taking of ideas. And the presence of organizations will lead to a splintering of subjective forces. This will result in a feeling of subjective indignation that will be directed against Christian theology and morality.

A column in the Washington Post describes what happened to businesses in the 1980s. “In the recent history of management ideas, few have had a more profound — or pernicious — effect than the one that says corporations should be run in a manner that ‘maximizes shareholder value’ … What began in the 1970s and ’80s as a useful corrective to self-satisfied managerial mediocrity has become a corrupting, self-interested dogma peddled by finance professors, money managers and over-compensated corporate executives… For too many corporations, ‘maximizing shareholder value’ has also provided justification for bamboozling customers, squeezing suppliers and employees, avoiding taxes and leaving communities in the lurch. For any one profit-maximizing company, such behavior may be perfectly rational. But when competition forces all companies to behave in this fashion, it’s hardly clear that society is better off… Take the simple example of outsourcing production overseas. Certainly it makes sense for any one company to aggressively pursue such a strategy. But when every company does it, so many American workers wind up losing their jobs or having their pay cut that they can no longer buy even the cheaper goods produced overseas. The companies may also find that government no longer has sufficient tax revenue to educate workers or invest in the roads and ports and airports through which their goods are delivered to market… Perhaps the most ridiculous aspect of ‘shareholder uber alles’ is how at odds it is with every modern theory about managing people.”

Looking at this cognitively, a corporation is an artificial ‘person’ legally constructed out of the objective realm of facts, skills, and objects. The idea of ‘maximizing shareholder value’ treats these objective entities as belonging to subjective identity; running a corporation as a corporation becomes subservient to submitting to the subjective desires of the shareholders.

One can also see the ‘breaking’ followed by the ‘indignance’. Subjective identity could not just walk into the labs like before and take the ideas, because the ideas existed within the ‘firm lumps or blocks’ of corporations, and these corporate structures ‘broke up’ the mental networks of subjective identity. The indignance describes the emotional response of the shareholders feeling that corporations had no right to exist as independent entities, but rather ‘owed it to the people’. This feeling of ‘owing it to the people’ emerged as a result of the economic downturn in the 1970s. Quoting further from the article, “In the 1970s, when increased competition started to squeeze out profits, it was easier for executives to disappoint shareholders than their workers or communities. The result was a lost decade for investors. No surprise, then, that by the mid-1980s, companies with lagging stock prices found themselves targets for hostile takeovers by rivals or corporate raiders using newfangled ‘junk’ bonds to finance their purchases. Disgruntled shareholders were only too willing to sell.”

That brings us to the next stage of ‘do against the holy covenant and return’. What emerged from this new focus upon satisfying subjective demands was a form of behavior that violated Christian ethics. The Washington Post article describes this anti-Christian behavior: “An elaborate institutional infrastructure has grown up to reinforce it. This infrastructure includes business schools that indoctrinate students with the shareholder-first ideology and equip them with tools to manipulate quarterly earnings and short-term share prices. It includes corporate lawyers who reflexively advise against any action that might lower the share price and invite shareholder lawsuits, however frivolous. It includes a Wall Street establishment that is thoroughly fixated on quarterly earnings, quarterly investment returns and short-term trading. And most of all, it is reinforced by gluttonous pay packages for top executives that are tied to the short-term performance of the company stock.”

Looking at this in more detail, the concept of business and corporations is consistent with Christian ethics, because one of the fundamental concepts of Christianity is that ideas must be turned into reality through some form of rational incarnation; incorporation takes ideas and makes them incarnate. However, a basic concept of Christianity is that one forgoes short-term pleasure in order to achieve long-term lasting results, and one should walk by faith and not by sight. Manipulating short-term share prices for the sake of appearance contradicts this fundamental principle. Another fundamental concept of Christianity is that leaders should be servants who follow God and his long-term interests rather than the short-term infatuations of people. This is contradicted by appointing highly-paid executives to produce short-term performance gains. Finally, another principle of Christianity is that law should be used to regulate the expression of childish personal mental networks. This principle is violated when lawyers use the law to enforce the short-term personal gratification of the stockholders.

Summarizing, the basic problem was that intelligent rational business activity became the servant of dumb subjective identity, and this drove businesses to head in a direction that violates fundamental Christian principles. I am not suggesting that all businesses were good before the 1980s. However, the current situation of putting the short-term feelings of the investor over the health of the corporation is clearly inadequate. Quoting further from the article, “A recent study… reported that nearly 80 percent of top executives and directors reported feeling most pressured to demonstrate a strong financial performance over a period of two years or less, with only 7 percent feeling pressure to deliver a strong performance over a period of five years or more. They also found that 55 percent of chief financial officers would forgo an attractive investment project today if it would cause the company to even marginally miss its quarterly earnings target.”

The problem does not lie in adding subjective mental networks to objective business. Rather, the problem arises when subjective thought raids the objective realm of business and then returns to its homeland of the subjective North. This made intelligent business thought the servant of the uneducated emotionally-driven investor, and turned the practice and study of business into optimizing the desires of the ignorant investor.

The end of verse 30 describes the anti-Christian effect of this subjective takeover of objective business. “So he will come back and pay attention to those who abandon the holy covenant.” ‘So he will come back’ indicates the return to subjective emotions that also happened to in verse 28. In verse 28 the objective realm of computers became treated as an aspect of the subjective world of personal identity. In verse 30 business is being treated as an aspect of the subjective world of personal identity. In both cases, this is ‘acting against the holy covenant’. But in verse 30 there is a further anti-Christian effect. Pay attention means ‘to discern’. Abandon means to ‘leave, forsake, loose’. And ‘holy covenant’ is again repeated. Looking at this cognitively, business and corporations are examples of Contributor-controlled technical thought. One primary attribute of technical thought is that it optimizes, which means adjusting behavior in order to reach some goal more effectively. In the 1980s, the goal of corporations became satisfying the ignorant MMNs of the stockholder. However, we have seen that this goal is inconsistent with Christian morality. Therefore, when technical thought started to optimize this inadequate goal, then this naturally caused financial experts to pay attention to those who were willing to forsake the ‘holy covenant’ of Christian morality.

Looking at this more generally, a similar trend can be seen in the deregulation of the 1980s. Quoting from, “The worst result of deregulation by the U.S. government in the 1980s was the savings and loan scandal. In a decade marked by greed, the scandal was monumental. Owners of savings and loans used money invested in their associations by hard-working men and women to fund risky business ventures and lavish lifestyles. In the process, they made millions. In the end, many of the people who invested in the associations lost their all their savings… Many believe the scandal is the largest theft ever in history.” (I suspect that the 2008 financial crisis was an even larger theft.)

Summarizing, the law was changed from protecting the consumer, the environment, and the economy to enabling short-term exploitation. The end result was a massive scandal in which short-term financial exploitation replaced and destroyed long-term financial thrift. I am not suggesting that the solution to every problem is government regulation, because that introduces its own set of problems and inefficiencies. Going further, even if the government does protect the people from corporations, who will protect the people from the government? That problem will become apparent later in the chapter. However, we are looking here at what happened in the 1980s as a result of subjective MMNs taking over the corporate world and being enabled to do so by deregulation.

The Abomination of Desolation 11:31

Verse 31 describes the infamous abomination of desolation. “Forces from him will arise, desecrate the sanctuary fortress, and do away with the regular sacrifice. And they will set up the abomination that makes desolate.” Force means ‘arm, shoulder, strength’ which is being interpreted as the wielding of technical thought. Arise is the standard word ‘to stand’. Desecrate is the intensive (pi’el) form of the noun ‘pierce’ that was used at the end of verse 26. That was interpreted as postmodernism successfully attacking a core assumption of rational thought.

What is being desecrated here is the sanctuary fortress. Sanctuary means ‘sacred place, sanctuary’, and fortress means ‘a place or means of safety, protection’. This is the fifth of seven times that this word ‘fortress’ occurs in Daniel 11, but this is the only reference to a sanctuary fortress. Putting this together, some core assumption of holiness as a form of safety and protection is being breached. Do away with is the causative (hifil) form of ‘to turn aside’. And the word regular sacrifice actually means ‘continuity’. Within the Jewish context, this would describe the regular sacrifice, but the original Hebrew simply says ‘causing to turn aside from continuity’.

This will be replaced by ‘the abomination of desolation’. Set up means ‘to give, put, set’. Abomination means ‘detested thing’. Desolation means ‘to be desolated or appalled’. Matthew 24:15 specifically refers to this phrase: “Therefore when you see the ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand).” Matthew 24 is obviously referring to a new abomination of desolation that is like the one in Daniel but different. That is because the abomination of desolation of Daniel 11 happened within Antiochus IV sacrificed the pig in the Temple, and Matthew 24 was written after this happened. In addition, the phrase ‘let the reader understand’ implies that one should use thought to work out the meaning of this term.

The essay on Matthew interprets the abomination of desolation by looking at the Greek words that are used to describe the abomination of desolation. Quoting from that essay, a holy place indicates that one is thinking about the Perceiver idea about holiness rather than referring to any specific holy item or person. Standing in the holy place implies that these Perceiver facts about holiness have created a Platonic form which now ‘stands in the holy place’. But what stands in the holy place is desolation—a wilderness that is devoid of any of the mental networks of life. And this personal void has an associated odor of abhorrence. In practical terms, whenever any group or person regards itself as different and special, this then will trigger a gut response to this holiness, which will be motivated by feelings of abhorrence to attempt to remove the supposedly holy person or group. This is a cognitive contradiction, because one is being driven by feelings of holiness to attack feelings of holiness, and one is being emotionally attracted to that which one abhors. This means that any ‘nail’ which ‘sticks up’ cannot just be left alone. Instead, it must be pounded down religiously for having offended the others by daring to stick up.

Applying this to the context of Daniel 11, the civil rights era led to the conclusion that social problems need to be dealt with through the ‘arm’ of government legislation. Postmodernism created a mental context which rejected the idea of objective thought by asserting that all supposed truth and theory are actually expressions of mental networks. The two incursions of the North into the South then placed major aspects of rational thought under the control of subjective thought with its postmodern assumptions and legislative tendencies. The end result is that any major problem within society will be interpreted as some group imposing itself upon the population. And the natural conclusion will be to use a combination of protests and government legislation to stop that offending group from imposing itself upon the population. When this mindset successfully takes control of major segments of objective thought, then this will lead to the abomination of desolation described in Matthew 24.

This also explains what it means to ‘desecrate the sanctuary fortress, and do away with the regular sacrifice’. The idea of holiness is being ‘pierced’. It is no longer regarded as a sanctuary fortress that is immune from personal thought. Instead, the masses now feel that they have the right to impose the feelings of the subjective North upon concepts of holiness, because holiness itself is being regarded as merely an opinion imposed upon the masses by some authority group. The end result is a ‘turning aside from continuity’. In a normal society, ideas of holiness have the greatest continuity and provide an emotional bedrock of core mental networks upon which the mind can rest. But this sanctuary fortress has now been pierced and the idea of continuity has been turned aside, even at this most fundamental level.

This sort of thinking will have a massively corruptive impact upon the concept of absolute truth. That is because absolute truth is based in the idea that a certain group of people from the past who are special and different has revealed truth in written form. Postmodern thought interprets all such revelation as oppression upon the masses by some ruling class. The actual content of the revelation is of secondary importance. Absolute truth will not respond by defending the content of its truth because evaluating content requires Perceiver thought, while absolute truth uses Mercy emotions to overwhelm Perceiver thought. Saying this more carefully, absolute truth usually includes significant rational analysis when dealing with peripheral concepts, but when discussing core religious beliefs it will state that one must believe because it is written in the Holy Book. When postmodern thought progresses to the level of an abomination of desolation, then the very idea that truth comes from a special book will be instinctively rejected as morally wrong. Not just wrong, but morally wrong stated with a feeling of righteous and holy indignation.

Such a negative response is described in verse 32. “And by smooth words he will turn to godlessness those who act wickedly toward the covenant.” Smooth means ‘smoothness, flattery’, and is similar to the word smoothness that was seen in verse 21, which was interpreted as the eloquent words of the civil rights movement. These two related words are found three times in Daniel, in 11:21, 11:32, and 11:34. This emphasis upon smoothness contradicts the idea of ‘turning away from continuity’ that was mentioned in verse 31. Looking at this historically, the civil rights movement was portrayed as a way of bringing smoothness to society by eliminating social categories that made sharp distinctions between one group of people and another, such as blacks and whites, or men and women. Similarly, the change that happens in verse 32 will also be portrayed as maintaining smoothness by eliminating the ‘oppression of power groups’. However, this supposed smoothness will actually result in a sharp break from the continuity of societal norms.

The word turn to godlessness is actually the causative form of ‘to be polluted or profane’ and God is not explicitly mentioned. Thus, what is being described here is a general movement away from religiosity rather than an explicit attack upon God and religion. Moving away from traditional religious mental networks will be portrayed as heading in the direction of the ‘smoothness’ of tolerance and universal acceptance. Act wickedly toward means ‘to act wickedly’ and covenant is the word used to describe the covenant between God and man. This means that those who behave in ways that violate traditional religious norms will be most receptive to the message of rejecting traditional holiness in the pursuit of smoothness. Saying this more simply, those who pursue alternate lifestyles will embrace the idea of rejecting outmoded guilt-ridden forms of intolerance. This conclusion follows naturally from postmodernism because if Perceiver truth and Teacher theories are merely propaganda based in MMNs of social status, then religion is simply some group of people imposing judgment upon those who are different.

The Emergence of Rational Morality 11:32-33

Verse 32 then introduces a new group of people. “But the people who know their God will be strong and take action.” So far, the chapter has centered upon the interaction between the subjective king of the North and the objective king of the South. These two categories result from the emotions that are present in MMNs (Mercy mental networks), because subjective thought embraces MMNs while objective thought protects Perceiver facts by avoiding MMNs. A concept of God, in contrast, emerges when a sufficiently general Teacher theory that applies to personal identity turns into a TMN (Teacher mental network). God was previously mentioned back in verse 8, which was interpreted as the concept of God that existed back in the Victorian era. That God was associated with ‘the princes’ of empire, leading to the equating of God-and-country.

Verse 32 talks about knowing God. The word know refers to knowledge but is also used as a euphemism for sex. This describes a combination of objective and subjective, because facts imply objective thought while sex involves strong mental networks of subjective thought. I am not attempting here to build any ‘theology of sex’, but rather pointing out that knowing God involves a combination of objective and subjective thought. Strong is the familiar word that means ‘to be or grow firm or strong’, and take action is the normal word for ‘do, make’.

Looking at this cognitively, I mentioned that an abomination of desolation will instinctively turn against any ideas of absolute truth. This provides an opportunity to move beyond absolute truth to universal truth. Absolute truth is based in holy books and textbooks: some source of truth makes statements, and the great Mercy status of this source overwhelms Perceiver thought into ‘knowing’ what is ‘true’. This emotional ‘truth’ is then written down and this written record becomes a source of absolute truth. Universal truth, in contrast is based in repetition: Perceiver thought looks for connections that are repeated. When some connection is repeatedly observed within different contexts and cultures, then Perceiver thought gains confidence that this connection describes universal truth.

Universal truth can be discovered either secularly or religiously. Science is a secular pursuit of universal truth, because it searches for connections of natural cause-and-effect that are repeated. But objective science will avoid about thinking about topics such as God and morality because these involve subjective emotions, and objective thought suppresses subjective emotions. It is also possible to follow a religious path to universal truth. Instead of viewing the Bible, or some other holy book, as the source of absolute truth, one views the Bible as a description of a universal being known as God, and one recognizes that knowing God personally goes beyond studying facts about God in the Bible. This religious path is being described in verse 32.

Verse 32 mentions another important aspect, which is doing. Absolute truth naturally thinks in terms of static facts, because both Perceiver and Mercy thought do not think naturally in terms of time. For instance, Aristotle viewed God as the unmoved mover, expressed through the Platonic form of the sphere, and this concept of a static God had a major impact upon medieval thought, which pursued scholasticism and its belief in absolute truth. Science, in contrast, has discovered that universal truth can be found in natural processes, which describe how things behave. And science uncovers these universal truths by doing experiments. Similarly, discovering the character of God requires doing. Merely reading the Bible, studying theology, or asserting doctrine is not enough. Instead, these words have to be accompanied by actions. Absolute truth will naturally interpret doing as ‘salvation by works’—attempting to reach some Mercy state of perfection through Server actions. But one is not doing in order to reach a Mercy goal but rather in order to gain Teacher understanding. For instance, this happens when doing homework or applying some lesson in a lab.

Making a mental transition from absolute truth to universal truth is like going through a mental weightlifting program. It is difficult to hold on to Perceiver facts in the middle of emotional pressure; objective thought deals with this problem by avoiding subjective emotions. Therefore, Perceiver confidence has to be acquired. Every time one encounters an emotional crisis and successfully holds on to the facts, then Perceiver thought will gain confidence within this context.

Summarizing, the positive path described in verse 32 involves three elements: knowing God, becoming strong, and taking action. The order of these three is significant. One must first know God in order to understand the right kind of action that is needed, and then become strong in order to gain the mental confidence that is required to perform this right action. This provides the mental framework that makes it possible to do the right action. If one starts with action, then one will probably not perform the right action.

Verse 33 looks further at this positive path. “And those who have insight among the people will give understanding to the many.” Insight means ‘to have insight, comprehension’. Give understanding means ‘give understanding’. ‘Of the people’ implies that these instructors are probably not coming from the leaders and academic experts. That is because the Mercy emotions of personal status make it more difficult to discern Teacher emotion, especially in an environment that does not know how to handle subjective Mercy emotions. Saying this another way, postmodernism is often correct; theory often is propaganda being imposed upon the people by experts. But it is also possible to find a more solid basis for truth and understanding. However, this more solid basis of universal truth will tend to be discovered by those who are ‘of the people’ and have not been officially recognized by society as experts with personal status. Notice that these teachers are not giving status to their students but rather understanding; they are providing general theories in Teacher thought that explain how things work.

That brings us to the question of why understanding is emerging at this point. The simple answer is that society is being driven through a paradigm shift. On the negative side, existing Perceiver facts and Teacher theories of absolute truth have become discredited. On the positive side, the public display of socially disapproved behavior that was previously hidden makes it possible for Perceiver thought to discover principles of moral cause-and-effect. It is as if society has turned into a social laboratory in which everyone is publicly performing moral experiments. But one will only discover these universal principles if one is approaching society from the perspective that universal truth exists. In other words, verse 32 proceeds verse 33, because verse 32 provides the mindset that makes it possible to learn the lessons of verse 33.

Verse 33 continues by describing the price of understanding. “Yet they will fall by sword and by flame, by captivity and by plunder for many days.” Fall means ‘to stumble, stagger, totter’ and was seen previously in verse 19 to describe the fall of Nazism and in verse 14 for the collapse of the worker’s paradise in communism. This suggests that the reference in verse 33 also refers to the end of some ideologically driven vision. Going further, sword means ‘sword’ and comes from a word that means ‘to attack, smite down’. Flame means ‘flaming, head of the spear’. There are two versions of this word, and this one is the feminine version. Captivity means ‘captive’. And plunder means ‘spoil, booty’ and this word also has two versions with the feminine version being used here.

I have found when looking at the New Testament that lists make sense when interpreted as cognitive sequences, and these four terms can also be interpreted as a cognitive sequence. Starting with the first term, absolute truth feels that truth is imposed upon people by sources of authority, leading to the idea that truth is a kind of intellectual sword that one uses to smite the foe. This approach may be natural for absolute truth but it does not work with universal truth. That is because universal truth has to be discovered by Perceiver thought, which means giving Perceiver thought the freedom to think without smiting it by the sword of divine authority. The underlying assumption is that absolute truth still has sufficient emotional appeal to be effective as a weapon. Looking at this historically, one could quote the Bible at someone in the 1980s and get a result. Trying such an approach today is likely to lead to being smitten oneself for harassment by the sword of government. Looking at this in terms of stumbling, using the mindset of absolute truth will cause a person to stumble mentally in the pursuit of universal truth, and it will also tend to provoke a similar response from others. Summarizing, the first stage of moving from absolute truth to universal truth is to view universal facts as weapons that one can use to reinforce absolute truth. One can see this illustrated by the fundamentalist who preaches truth at others.

The second term is ‘flaming, head of the spear’ and is in the feminine, which implies a focus upon mental networks. Cognitively speaking, rational facts are being allowed to construct a Teacher understanding and this understanding is leading to the formation of Platonic forms. One is then becoming emotionally driven by these Platonic forms, allowing them to ‘inflame’ the mind and to act as the ‘head of the spear’ of progress. Saying this more bluntly, one is viewing visions of heavenly perfection as an alternate reality to which one escapes mentally and which one inflicts upon others emotionally. Summarizing, there is enough rational thought to create the vision of a better world but not enough rational thought to understand how to turn this vision into reality. This is illustrated by the charismatic who becomes emotionally driven by the spirit.

The third term is ‘captivity’. Rational thought has now progressed to the level of ownership. In the previous step, one was emotionally driven by the vision. Here one becomes personally owned. Ownership indicates a level of Perceiver thought that goes beyond infatuation, because Perceiver thought determines ownership by building repeatable connections between people and what they own. This mindset can be seen in the mega-church with its structure and its many programs. The idea is to take aspects of secular thought and make them captive to Christianity by expressing them in a religious way within a religious context.

For instance, for a while many Christians were talking about Francis Collins, pointing out almost in a worshipful manner that ‘The head of the human genome project is a Christian’. I read one of his ‘Christian’ books and it was vaguely Christian. I say this because, unlike mental symmetry, Collins adds very few scientific details to his Christian belief. And Wikipedia points out that Collins’ view of Christianity is only partially rational. “He believes that people cannot be converted to Christianity by reason and argument alone, and that the final stage of conversion entails a ‘leap of faith’.” This illustrates what it means mentally to be taken captive. Collins has been taken captive by Christianity, but the Christianity has not changed much of the content or structure of his pre-Christian thinking. Similarly, Collins was mentally ‘taken captive’ by the Christian community without examining in detail the content of what he promotes.

The final term is ‘spoil, booty’, which is also in the feminine version. In the previous step, entire systems and people were being taken captive. ‘Spoil and booty’ implies that facts and content are being separated from people. One is not just taking entire peoples or systems captive but rather taking what people know and breaking this down into its elements. And one is doing this at the emotional level of mental networks. This describes the ideal form of learning in which one internalizes concepts at an intuitive level. But one is still dealing with knowledge at a fragmented level. One has not made the final step of grasping how these fragments can come together to form a new personal identity or a rational system of theology. For example, I suggest that Christian apologetics tends to function at this level of spoil and booty, because secular information is analyzed at the level of grasping underlying emotional implications. But apologetics is still functioning at the level of information and doctrine.

These four approaches will all lead to stumbling, but the stumbling that happens with Christianity is different than the stumbling that happened previously with Nazism and communism. That is because the content of Christianity is consistent with mental wholeness. The Bible may be taught by most Christians as absolute truth, but the content of the Bible makes deep cognitive sense, making it possible to write essays such as this one. In contrast, the content of Nazism and communism is not compatible with mental wholeness but rather destroys the individual. Therefore, when the high-sounding propaganda of Nazism or communism stumbles, then all that remains is brute force. However, I have discovered repeatedly from personal experience that when one stumbles with the Christian message, then it is possible to be put back together at a higher level by the message that one is proclaiming. Saying this another way, promoting the Christian message submits the TMN of the Christian message to MMNs of personal identity. Stated bluntly, I am promoting God. When my efforts to promote God fall apart, then it is possible for me to become submitted to my message, changing the relationship from me helping God, to me being transformed by my concept of God.

Christian Intellectual Growth 11:34

This explains why the stumbling in verse 33 is followed by some recovery in verse 34. “Now when they fall they will be granted a little help, and many will join with them in hypocrisy.” Fall is the same word ‘stumble’ that was used in verse 33. Granted help is the word ‘help’ in verb form followed by the same word as a noun. I mentioned earlier that the Christian message needs to be accompanied by doing in order to gain understanding. Using cognitive language, Teacher words need to be accompanied by Server actions, because Server thought gives shape and stability to Teacher theories. Being granted help comes from the same circuit functioning in reverse, because Teacher understanding will expand and guide Server actions. Using the language of Thomas Kuhn, the Server action will be viewed as an exemplar that illustrates a general process in Teacher thought, showing how to behave in similar circumstances. In addition, the Teacher emotion of understanding will provide an emotional motivation to perform Server actions that exemplify the Teacher understanding. This describes the mechanism of righteousness. But there will only be a little help, because the understanding is growing at the periphery while the center of religious belief is still being held together by absolute truth.

Looking now at the second phrase, join is in the passive (nifal), which conveys the flavor of being driven to join. And the joining is happening to ‘them’ and not to any understanding. The word hypocrisy is actually the word ‘smoothness’ that was used back in verse 21 to describe the initial appeal of the civil rights movement. Smoothness is an expression of Teacher emotion because it brings integration to separate items, but it describes Teacher thought functioning at a surface level by removing any sharp distinctions created by Perceiver thought. Applying this to the context, many people will be attracted to the partial answers, as long as these answers are presented in a ‘smooth’ manner that does not feel like a break from existing thought.

This relates to a concept in the cognitive science of religion known as being minimally counterintuitive. In simple terms, the mind is attracted to small changes but repelled by large shifts. For instance, a unicorn is mentally attractive because it is a normal horse with the addition of a single horn. Similarly, a flying horse is attractive because it is a normal horse with the addition of wings. A flying unicorn stretches the limits of mental attractiveness, because there are now two major changes to the normal horse. Looking at this cognitively, there is a balance between Exhorter thought, which finds excitement in novelty, and Facilitator thought, which rejects what is unreasonable.

One can see examples of these four stages, combined with partial help and crowds joined through smoothness, in the Christianity of the 1980s and 90s.

One example is the Christian Right. Wikipedia summarizes that “Since the late 1970s, the Christian right has been a notable force in both the Republican Party and American politics when Baptist pastor Jerry Falwell and other Christian leaders began to urge conservative Christians to involve themselves in the political process. In response to the rise of the Christian right, the 1980 Republican Party platform assumed a number of its positions.” This illustrates the element of passively joining, because the religious right was not pursuing a new path but rather attaching itself to the existing path of American politics.

The religious right functioned largely at the first level of thrusting absolute truth upon general population. In the words of Wikipedia, “The Christian right is notable for advancing socially conservative positions on issues including school prayer, intelligent design, embryonic stem cell research, homosexuality, temperance, euthanasia, contraception, Christian nationalism, Sunday Sabbatarianism, sex education, abortion, and pornography. Although the term Christian right is most commonly associated with politics in the United States, similar Christian conservative groups can be found in the political cultures of other Christian-majority nations.” Notice that the Christian right extends beyond America to include similar movements in other ‘Christian-majority nations’.

The Christian right also functioned at the second level of emotional commitment to some vision. Wikipedia describes that “Much of the Christian right’s power within the American political system is attributed to their extraordinary turnout rate at the polls. The voters that coexist in the Christian right are also highly motivated and driven to get out a viewpoint on issues they care about. As well as high voter turnout, they can be counted on to attend political events, knock on doors and distribute literature. Members of the Christian right are willing to do the electoral work needed to see their candidate elected. Because of their high level of devotion, the Christian right does not need to monetarily compensate these people for their work.” Notice the extraordinary commitment to furthering the cause of the Christian right, indicating emotional commitment to a vision.

The biggest problem with the Christian right is that it is still thinking in terms of biblical absolute truth. In the words of Wikipedia, “It promotes conservative interpretations of the Bible as the basis for moral values and enforcing such values by legislation… In the United States, the Christian right often supports their claims by asserting that the country was ‘founded by Christians as a Christian Nation.’”

That brings us to the matter of ‘smoothness’. The Christian right is attempting to function within the existing political system. This method was reasonably effective back in Victorian England when the concept of absolute truth was still accepted by the general population. But we have seen that postmodern thought rejects the very idea of absolute truth, and we have also seen that postmodern thought has become the dominant mindset of Western civilization. Therefore, the Christian right is attempting to function smoothly within a system that is diametrically opposed to the way of thinking used by the Christian right.

Turning to the next example, the ‘seven mountains of culture’ is an aspect of the religious right that attempts to function at a more intelligent level. One website summarizes that “In 1975, Bill Bright, founder of Campus Crusade and Loren Cunningham, founder of Youth With a Mission (YWAM), developed a God-given, world-changing strategy. Their mandate: Bring Godly change to a nation by reaching its seven spheres, or mountains, of societal influence. They concluded that in order to truly transform any nation with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, these seven facets of society must be reached: Religion, Family, Education, Government, Media, Arts & Entertainment and Business.” This describes functioning at the third level of ‘captivity’, because one is attempting to take various realms of society and make them captive to the Christian message. However, notice that this list does not include any of the hard sciences but rather focuses upon regions of thought that are driven by subjective mental networks. And if one examines what has happened, one concludes that the captivity has occurred largely in reverse. In each of these seven areas, Christians have been taken captive by the prevailing worldview of the mountain of culture. That is because the structure and content of each of these mountains is coming from the secular realm with its juxtaposition of objective science taken over by subjective marketing. A Christianity of absolute truth will think that it is sufficient to take the secular content and make it captive to a Christian leadership. But that is merely another version of the underlying problem, which is that objective rational thought is being taken over by irrational subjective mental networks. The smoothness here is expressed by the attempt to fit in to the existing subjectively driven aspects of secular society.

Another example of evangelical Christianity partially following these four stages is the mega-church. Wikipedia summarizes that “The concept originated in the mid 19th century, continued onward into the mid 20th century and expanded rapidly through the 1980s and 1990s; in present days it is widely seen across America in the early 21st century.”

A Hartford Institute article defines the typical mega-church as having the following characteristics: “2000 or more persons in attendance at weekly worship, counting adults and children at all worship locations. A charismatic, authoritative senior minister. A very active 7 day a week congregational community. A multitude of diverse social and outreach ministries. An intentional small group system or other structures of intimacy and accountability. Innovative and often contemporary worship format. And a complex differentiated organizational structure.”

Examining this in the light of the four characteristics, this goes beyond the first stage of merely preaching at some audience, because there is ‘a very active 7 day a week congregational community’. And yet, the primary attribute of the typical mega-church is some charismatic leader preaching at several thousand people in a massive auditorium. Quoting from another article on this website, “There is no doubt that the senior pastor is a key component in the success of a megachurch. It would be an exaggeration to conclude from this statement that megachurches are personality cults, or are so tied to one person that they will collapse when that person is gone. Nevertheless, the leader is critical. For 83% of churches in this survey the dramatic growth of the church occurred during the tenure of this current pastor.”

The mega-church also goes beyond the second stage of mere enthusiasm because there is ‘a multitude of diverse social and outreach ministries’. But one of the primary characteristics of a mega-church is high energy, contemporary music designed to give people the feeling of having encountered God. Quoting from another article on the website, “Not surprisingly, contemporary worship (indicated by electric guitars, keyboards, drums and visual projection equipment) remains the overwhelming norm for worship. In the 2008 study 78% of megachurches thought the term ‘contemporary’ described their worship quite or very well, with only 2% saying this didn’t describe their worship at all… Additionally, they overall describe their worship first as joyful. Among 7 choices offered, the most-selected 2 characteristics intensified in just 3 years (‘joyful’ and ‘God’s presence’).”

The third point of ‘taking captives’ is also a mixed bag. On the one hand, most mega-churches have ‘An intentional small group system or other structures of intimacy and accountability’. But on the other hand, the typical mega-church is also infamous for following a seeker-friendly strategy that Christianizes secular culture by ‘taking it captive’ and using it within a Christian setting. Curiously, I could not find any reference to this seeker-friendly mentality on the Hartford Institute website. More generally, I did not find any discussion of doctrine, theology, or principles of character development. This itself portrays a mindset of being ‘taken captive’, because the analysis of mega-churches has been ‘taken captive’ by the current methodology of secular statistical analysis. There is nothing wrong with statistical analysis, but gathering statistics about church behavior will not lead to a deep understanding of personal growth.

And this shortcoming is even pointed out in a Wikipedia article, which begins by explaining that “The Church Growth Movement is a movement within evangelical Christianity which aims to grow churches based on research, sociology, analysis, etc.” Wikipedia explains further that “Two key attributes of Church Growth are a passion for the ‘Great Commission’ and a willingness to apply research to attracting members, including quantitative methods. Scholars and leaders from many denominations continue to meet annually to discuss the implications of these insights as the American Society for Church Growth. The ‘seeker sensitive’ label is associated with some megachurches in the United States where Christian messages are often imparted by means of elaborate creative elements emphasizing secular popular culture, such as popular music styles. Such churches often also develop a wide range of activities to draw in families at different stages in their lives.” Summarizing, secular research methods have been ‘taken captive’ by Christian leaders in order that more people can be ‘taken captive’ by Christianity. And one primary method is by ‘taking captive’ elements of ‘secular popular culture’ in a ‘seeker sensitive’ manner.

But who has taken whom captive? Are mega-churches taking people captive for Christianity, or is Christianity itself being taken captive by secular thought and behavior? Wikipedia poses that question: “Critics from other Christian groups suggest the movement is ‘only about numbers’ and ‘success’ oriented. Willow Creek Community Church recently conducted a major survey that revealed that heavy involvement into programs and activities did not necessarily translate into discipleship unless the church had a clear path for believers’ development.”

That brings us to the fourth point of ‘spoil and booty’. The Hartford Institute website points out that a mega-church has ‘a complex differentiated organizational structure’. Looking at this in more detail, “As a megachurch grows it requires an increasingly complex division of labor and departmentalization. Large numbers of staff and volunteers are needed not just to coordinate and facilitate weekend services for thousands but also to care for the spiritual development of these members and empower them in ministry. The megachurches in the study average 20 full-time paid leadership staff positions and 9 part-time positions. These churches also have on average 22 paid full-time and 15 paid part-time administrative or support staff positions. The average number of volunteers giving 5 or more hours a week to the church workers is 284.”

This final fourth point is discussed in the essay on Matthew. The underlying problem involves the nature of Christ. A concept of incarnation emerges as abstract technical thought becomes integrated with concrete technical thought. This is reflected in the name Jesus Christ, with Jesus referring to the concrete, human side of incarnation and Christ to the abstract, divine side. Most mega-churches are evangelical, and an evangelical church emphasizes forming—and interacting with—an internal concept of Jesus. But what technical structure in abstract thought provides the concept of Christ? Is it an integrated understanding of Christianity, or is it the integrated physical and organizational structure of the mega-church itself? When a concept of Christ comes implicitly from the structure of the mega-church, then I suggest that one is functioning merely at the level of ‘spoil and booty’. One may be making spiritual progress in specific areas, but the structure that holds everything together is essentially another version of a modern organization or corporation. And Daniel 11:29-30 just talked about organizations and corporations being taken over by secular subjective thought. Thus, a seeker-friendly mega-church is ultimately another example of an organization being taken over by secular subjective thought.

The final example we will examine is that of Bill Gothard. I mention this example because Gothard teaches Romans 12 spiritual gifts as a major part of his advanced seminar, and mental symmetry is based upon Romans 12 spiritual gifts. Wikipedia reports that “At the height of his popularity during the 1970s, the Basic Youth Conflicts seminar with Bill Gothard was regularly filling auditoriums throughout the United States and beyond with attendance figures as large as ten thousand and more for a one-week seminar.” About 2 ½ million people have attended Gothard’s basic seminar, and in 1998 the attendance for the advanced seminar was about 1/10 the attendance for the basic seminar. This means that Gothard has taught approximately 250,000 people about Romans 12 spiritual gifts. Therefore, this is an example of ‘many joining’. Looking at this further, Gothard went beyond the first stage because he focused upon teaching Christians rather than attempting to preach to the secular realm. He also went beyond the second stage because he attempted to replace emotional infatuation with a system of education. Gothard also went beyond the third stage because he did not just attach Christian labels to secular ways of thinking, but rather attempted to come up with a new way of thinking based upon Romans 12 spiritual gifts.

That brings us to the fourth stage of ‘spoil and property’, which means analyzing secular concepts, breaking them down into their elements, and incorporating these elements in a Christian system of thought. Gothard claims to have done this step. But Gothard is an Exhorter person, and the Exhorter combines Teacher and Mercy. This leads naturally to a form of intuitive thought that jumps directly from specific Mercy experience to general Teacher theory, a form of thought that I refer to as ‘proof by example’. This kind of thinking can be useful for coming up with ideas, but it is not suitable for building a more rigorous structure of thought. I have also used intuitive thought to extend mental symmetry. But I have then checked my intuitive insights by comparing them with the findings of others. And I have also attempted to educate intuitive thought within my mind by becoming reasonably conversant in a number of technical fields, so that I can talk about these fields in such a manner that experts within these fields will not cringe in embarrassment. For instance, even though the topic of this essay is biblical prophecy, Western history is being discussed in a cognitively sound manner that could stand on its own in a rational fashion if one took away the Bible verses. In contrast, much of Gothard’s material qualifies as cringe-worthy—experts cringe when they read it.

In addition, Gothard has not broken free of the mindset of absolute truth, leading to a system of thought that claims to be based in universal Teacher understanding but actually is strongly rooted in the authority and emotional status of the person of Bill Gothard. Looking at the Teacher side, Wikipedia reports that “Gothard’s primary teaching, his ‘Basic Seminar,’ focuses on what he refers to as seven ‘Basic Life Principles.’ He claims that these principles are universal and that people will suffer consequences for violating them.” The personal Mercy side is described in an article in the Guardian. “My family’s transition into the Advanced Training Institute (ATI) cult – the homeschool offshoot of Bill Gothard’s Institute in Basic Life Principles now infamous because of its association with the Duggar family – was slow. The institute teaches a rigid hierarchy where God comes first, men come second, women are third and children are at the very bottom. As with many people who join cults, my parents were drawn in by the teachings of a leader – Gothard – whose charisma and sense of moral certainty they ultimately found impossible to resist… An emphasis on controlling every aspect of a woman’s physical appearance was central to the ATI lifestyle, and conforming to Gothard’s personal tastes was an obsession shared by women and men.”

Because both mental symmetry and Bill Gothard claim to build a rational system of thought upon Romans 12 spiritual gifts, we will look at some of the claims of Bill Gothard and compare them with mental symmetry. I will be quoting from a website that critiques the thinking of Gothard. The author points out numerous major shortcomings in Gothard’s approach, and we will look at nine of them below.

First, the author complains that “Mr. Gothard continually announces his materials as ‘discoveries,’ which implies that the Lord has revealed these things to him, thus placing himself in a special position as authority.” Mental symmetry makes similar claims of originality. However, these claims are backed up by extensive corroborating evidence from diverse sources: About half of the New Testament has been analyzed in the original Greek. The cognitive model of mental symmetry maps in detail on to the latest neurology. Mental symmetry can also be used to explain major aspects of psychology as well as come up with a philosophy of science.

Second, “Mr. Gothard believes God speaks and reveals personal guidance to individuals through rhemas and promptings… So, in Gothard’s guidance system an inner feeling of peace is the ultimate test.” Mental symmetry also suggests that one should be guided by the sense of peace that comes from behaving in a manner that is consistent with the theory of mental symmetry. However, mental symmetry is a meta-theory that integrates many different fields, and not just an alternative fundamentalist mindset that rejects most fields. I know that this describes Gothard’s system, because Gothard personally encountered an early version of mental symmetry taught by my brother Lane and rejected it because Lane’s study of biographies was ‘too secular’. (The only personal interaction I had with Gothard was a letter of appreciation from his staff back in about 1990.)

Third, “Mr. Gothard is selective in his use of Bible verses in order to prove his point. Much of his material is not only Scripture twisting, but also invalid proof-texting.” In contrast, mental symmetry takes the principle of biblical context to the extreme by treating entire biblical books as connected cognitive sequences. This is the polar opposite of proof-texting.

Fourth, “He takes singular words from the Scripture and making [sic] full-blown doctrines out of them.” For instance, he “develops a whole doctrine of hearing from God by making the two Greek synonyms for ‘word’ (logos and rhema) into two totally different ways God speaks.” Mental symmetry would agree with Gothard that a distinction needs to be made between logos and rhema. This is based in the recognition that abstract technical thought is rooted in precise definitions. Therefore, the meanings of the Greek words are treated as precise definitions and the same definition is used whenever that word is found in the New Testament. But these precise definitions are based in Bible dictionaries (as collated by biblehub) and not just assigned at random through personal choice.

Fifth, he “Redefines biblical words to fit his system.” Mental symmetry does something similar. For instance, logos is defined as the Teacher paradigm that lies behind some system of technical thought. The author complains that “Mr. Gothard’s use of Scripture is self-serving, inconsistent, and dangerous. Self-serving because he employs only such Scripture verses as fit his lesson. Inconsistent because he does not apply his method consistently to all of Scripture. Dangerous, since the method he employs with Scripture is the same method cult leaders employ.” These are valid complaints. Mental symmetry tries to avoid the first problem by analyzing entire books of the New Testament. The second problem is avoided by consistently assigning the same technical meaning to a Greek word wherever it is found in the New Testament. And the third danger is addressed by continuing to show that mental symmetry is consistent with the findings of researchers in many other fields.

Sixth, “He reads too much into various texts that the texts themselves do not prove.” These essays are reading a lot into the biblical text that is not directly there. However, this extrapolating from the biblical text is being guided by a cognitive theory that is based in extensive knowledge of other fields. One of the characteristics of a general Teacher theory is that it is capable of prediction—it can be used to extrapolate beyond the existing data to come up with new statements. The problem is not extrapolating beyond Scripture, but rather the method by which one extrapolates. Successful extrapolation from the Bible will explain more of the Bible. For instance, even though mental symmetry extrapolates from the biblical text, this extrapolation ends up clarifying other biblical texts rather than diverging from the Bible. For instance, the previous essay on Matthew 2-24 extrapolated massively beyond the biblical text by interpreting this as a Western prophecy of Western civilization. However, that extrapolation provided the key to gaining a deeper understanding of Daniel 11-12.

Seventh, he “Applies pop-science or pop-psychology to Scripture and makes ‘spiritual principles’ out of them.” I have found to my surprise that there is a fair bit of truth in pop psychology. This can be seen in the essay on Anthony Robbins. However, an 85 page academic paper that quotes from almost 200 neurological papers definitely goes beyond pop-psychology. And an 86 page academic paper that derives core doctrines of Christianity by extrapolating from principles of science definitely goes beyond pop-science.

Eighth, “Gothard is notorious for taking those things of nature and eisegeting them so as to develop ‘spiritual principles’… He has done this repeatedly with various cases from history. He does this with animals.” This is a valid complaint, which relates to the incorrect use of analogy. Using an analogy in an incorrect manner is dangerous. Mental symmetry also uses analogical reasoning extensively, but it is used in a semi-rigorous manner that is consistent with the way that analogical reasoning is used in science. This is discussed at the beginning of the academic paper on science and theology.

Ninth, “He believes that the King James Version is the only true Word of Gg evidence from diverse sources: About half of the New Testament has been analyzed in the original Greek. The cognitive model of mental symmetry maps in detail on to the latest neurology. Mental symmetry can also be used to explain major aspects of psychology as well as come up with a philosophy of science.

Second, “Mr. Gothard believes God speaks and reveals personal guidance to individuals through rhemas and promptings… So, in Gothard’s guidance system an inner feeling of peace is the ultimate test.” Mental symmetry also suggests that one should be guided by the sense of peace that comes from behaving in a manner that is consistent with the theory of mental symmetry. However, mental symmetry is a meta-theory that integrates many different fields, and not just an alternative fundamentalist mindset that rejects most fields. I know that this describes Gothard’s system, because Gothard personally encountered an early version of mental symmetry taught by my brother Lane and rejected it because Lane’s study of biographies was ‘too secular’. (The only personal interaction I had with Gothard was a letter of appreciation from his staff back in about 1990.)

Third, “Mr. Gothard is selective in his use of Bible verses in order to prove his point. Much of his material is not only Scripture twisting, but also invalid proof-texting.” In contrast, mental symmetry takes the principle of biblical context to the extreme by treating entire biblical books as connected cognitive sequences. This is the polar opposite of proof-texting.

Fourth, “He takes singular words from the Scripture and making [sic] full-blown doctrines out of them.” For instance, he “develops a whole doctrine of hearing from God by making the two Greek synonyms for ‘word’ (logos and rhema) into two totally different ways God speaks.” Mental symmetry would agree with Gothard that a distinction needs to be made between logos and rhema. This is based in the recognition that abstract technical thought is rooted in precise definitions. Therefore, the meanings of the Greek words are treated as precise definitions and the same definition is used whenever that word is found in the New Testament. But these precise definitions are based in Bible dictionaries (as collated by biblehub) and not just assigned at random through personal choice.

Fifth, he “Redefines biblical words to fit his system.” Mental symmetry does something similar. For instance, logos is defined as the Teacher paradigm that lies behind some system of technical thought. The author complains that “Mr. Gothard’s use of Scripture is self-serving, inconsistent, and dangerous. Self-serving because he employs only such Scripture verses as fit his lesson. Inconsistent because he does not apply his method consistently to all of Scripture. Dangerous, since the method he employs with Scripture is the same method cult leaders employ.” These are valid complaints. Mental symmetry tries to avoid the first problem by analyzing entire books of the New Testament. The second problem is avoided by consistently assigning the same technical meaning to a Greek word wherever it is found in the New Testament. And the third danger is addressed by continuing to show that mental symmetry is consistent with the findings of researchers in many other fields.

Sixth, “He reads too much into various texts that the texts themselves do not prove.” These essays are reading a lot into the biblical text that is not directly there. However, this extrapolating from the biblical text is being guided by a cognitive theory that is based in extensive knowledge of other fields. One of the characteristics of a general Teacher theory is that it is capable of prediction—it can be used to extrapolate beyond the existing data to come up with new statements. The problem is not extrapolating beyond Scripture, but rather the method by which one extrapolates. Successful extrapolation from the Bible will explain more of the Bible. For instance, even though mental symmetry extrapolates from the biblical text, this extrapolation ends up clarifying other biblical texts rather than diverging from the Bible. For instance, the previous essay on Matthew 2-24 extrapolated massively beyond the biblical text by interpreting this as a Western prophecy of Western civilization. However, that extrapolation provided the key to gaining a deeper understanding of Daniel 11-12.

Seventh, he “Applies pop-science or pop-psychology to Scripture and makes ‘spiritual principles’ out of them.” I have found to my surprise that there is a fair bit of truth in pop psychology. This can be seen in the essay on Anthony Robbins. However, an 85 page academic paper that quotes from almost 200 neurological papers definitely goes beyond pop-psychology. And an 86 page academic paper that derives core doctrines of Christianity by extrapolating from principles of science definitely goes beyond pop-science.

Eighth, “Gothard is notorious for taking those things of nature and eisegeting them so as to develop ‘spiritual principles’… He has done this repeatedly with various cases from history. He does this with animals.” This is a valid complaint, which relates to the incorrect use of analogy. Using an analogy in an incorrect manner is dangerous. Mental symmetry also uses analogical reasoning extensively, but it is used in a semi-rigorous manner that is consistent with the way that analogical reasoning is used in science. This is discussed at the beginning of the academic paper on science and theology.

Ninth, “He believes that the King James Version is the only true Word of God in the English, though he often uses paraphrased versions to substantiate various points.” In contrast, I have found that all of the English translations have their shortcomings, and all of the essays quote from the original Greek or Hebrew text of the Bible.

Summarizing, I suggest that Bill Gothard illustrates what happens when one follows the path of escaping from absolute truth at a peripheral level without questioning the underlying mindset of absolute truth. The smoothness here lies in attempting to maintain a continuity with American conservative fundamentalism.

Christian Transformation 11:35

I have suggested that a stumbling may be followed by a more accurate comprehension of the Christian message. This is described in verse 35. “And some of those who have insight will fall, to refine, purge, and cleanse them until the end time; because it is still to come at the appointed time.” Insight means ‘insight, comprehension’ and was last seen in verse 33 to describe those who are pursuing a positive path of understanding. Fall is the standard word which means ‘to stumble’. Refine means ‘to smelt, refine, test’. Purify means ‘to purify, select’. And cleanse is literally to ‘make white’.

These three terms can be seen as a cognitive progression. Refining refers to the need to gain Perceiver and Server confidence, because mental confidence grows as facts and sequences are subjected to the fire of emotional pressure and survive intact. Objective thought sidesteps this problem by being objective, while subjective thought avoids this problem by allowing emotions to overwhelm Perceiver thought. Learning to think rationally in the subjective requires gaining the confidence that is needed to hold on to Perceiver facts and Server sequences in the midst of emotional pressure. Refining is a primary need because it generates the mental content that is needed to construct a rational understanding; it provides the bricks for the structure of thought.

Purifying describes the initial work of Teacher thought, because Teacher thought comes up with general theories that summarize the essence of many specific situations. A substance is pure when it is all made of the same stuff. A general Teacher understanding purifies the mind by placing many specific situations within the realm of the same theory. For instance, if something is pure milk, then this means that everything within that something can be summarized by the verbal Teacher theory of ‘milk’.

White light is actually a combination of all seven colors of the rainbow. Similarly, a whole mind requires the cooperation of all seven cognitive modules. Saying this another way, pursuing purity will initially give the idea that what is needed is unison, with everyone and everything marching under the same banner. But as one follows this path, one recognizes that what is really needed is harmony, in which all the essential parts work together to generate wholeness.

Looking at this from a different perspective, God was viewed by Aristotle as the unmoved mover, a static purity based in the perfection of the sphere. However, God is not static but rather functions, and functioning requires a certain number of elements to work together in harmony. Looking at this from a Jewish perspective, Judaism spread the concept of monotheism, which replaced the chaos of many tribal gods with the purity of a single God. However, Judaism defined monotheism as an overgeneralized concept of God that was pure, but also was devoid of any comprehensible content. Christianity went beyond the unison of purity to the harmony of whiteness by stating that the monotheistic God is actually a Trinitarian God. That is because a Trinity is required if God is to function in a comprehensible manner within creation. This is expanded further in the essay on the Trinity. In contrast, we saw when looking at Philo of Alexandria that the overgeneralized God of Jewish mysticism is incapable of functioning in a comprehensible manner within creation.

Making these transitions is not a trivial matter. I know from personal experience that being tested is painful, and being tested in core areas is very painful. Going further, talking about a monotheistic God is easy. Developing an integrated concept of God that is capable of purifying the mind is much more difficult. (Jewish Kabbalah attempts to do this, and actually manages to come up with a partial solution, but it cannot solve the underlying problem of attempting to build a rational human mind upon an overgeneralized, unknowable concept of God.) Finally, making the mental transition from purity to harmony involves rebuilding one’s entire concept of God, and that takes decades. Going further, the mind will only make these transitions if it has no choice. Therefore, one’s existing insight has to stumble in some way in order to force one to move on to the next stage.

Verse 35 points out that this must continue ‘until the end time; because it is still to come at the appointed time’. This is critical, because the Christian examples that we examined demonstrate what happens if the purifying does not continue until the end time. Appointed time means ‘appointed time, place, or meeting’. Verse 35 seems to state that even if it does not continue until the end time, it will still happen at the appointed time. Looking at this historically, we saw at the beginning of this essay that the purifying did not continue until the end time. Instead, the Maccabees short-circuited the process by rebelling against the Seleucids. But ‘it still had to happen at the appointed time’, which means that the sequence had to be repeated and followed through to its conclusion. That is the general thesis of this essay, which suggests that we are currently experiencing a rerun of Daniel 11.

I suggest that this is because a core group of humanity has to go through the process of constructing and submitting to a sufficiently adequate concept of God. This appears to be a fundamental requirement that has to do with the continued existence of created beings as intelligent entities independent of God. Saying this more generally, I suggest that the key to constructing an adequate theodicy is recognizing that existence is more fundamental than pain or pleasure. The ultimate question is not ‘How can a good God create a universe that contains evil?’ Instead, the ultimate question is ‘How can a universal being create a universe that guarantees the continued existence of matter and people?’

Teacher Overgeneralization and Universal Tolerance 11:36

This explains why the blasphemy in verse 36 extends to God himself; society has to be forced to question existing, inadequate concepts of God. “Then the king will do as he pleases, and he will exalt himself and boast against every god and will speak dreadful things against the God of gods.” As he pleases means ‘goodwill, favor, acceptance, will’ and was previously seen in verse 16, which we interpreted as Hitler and the Third Reich doing as they wished to the people of Europe. Looking at this cognitively, if postmodern thought succeeds in emotionally tearing down all sources of ‘truth’, then eventually all that remains standing is the postmodern experts who have been doing all the tearing down. They will become the de facto sources of authority with no one to oppose them.

Looking at this more generally, if the king of the North represents subjective thought, then postmodernism will remove the societal restrictions upon the expression of subjective thought. What will be left is the strongest mental networks of culture and personal lifestyle, and these will become the new sources of ‘truth’.

This exalting of subjective mental networks can be seen in the second phrase: ‘And he will exalt himself and boast against every god’. Exalt means ‘to be high or exalted’, and boast means ‘to grow up, become great’. Both of these verbs are in the reflexive, which means that people are doing it to themselves. ‘Exalt’ refers more to Mercy status, while ‘boast’ describes generality in Teacher thought. Looking at this cognitively, subjective thought is both being given status in Mercy thought and being regarded as a source of understanding and generality in Teacher thought. This inclusion of Teacher generality is a new step. Previously, MMNs of culture, lifestyle, and oppression were being emphasized. The new element is to associate each of these with some theory in Teacher thought.

This additional element of Teacher thought and Teacher generality can be seen in the word god, which is repeated three times in this verse, once in the plural. This is not the normal word for God ‘Elohim’, but rather ‘El’ which is pluralized as ‘Elim’. This word for god is only found one other time in Daniel in 9:4. El can be used to describe God, but it also refers to men or angels of might and rank, or to the gods of nations. In verse 36, subjective thought is exalting itself in Mercy and Teacher thought above the existing gods of society.

What is happening cognitively is that Teacher overgeneralization is being enabled. Teacher emotion comes from generality, which means that it feels good to make sweeping statements. Normally, these sweeping statements are limited by Perceiver facts. For instance, Teacher thought may make the sweeping statement, ‘You always forget my birthday’, to which Perceiver thought may respond, ‘But I bought you a card last year’. When Perceiver thought successfully asserts some fact, then this limits the extent of Teacher overgeneralization. For instance, a less sweeping version of the initial statement would be, ‘But you usually forget my birthday’.

Teacher overgeneralization naturally occurs when factual knowledge is limited. Thus, one commonly sees Teacher overgeneralization in children. But if postmodern thought succeeds in eliminating enough Perceiver facts from society, then adults will start rediscovering Teacher overgeneralization. Overgeneralization usually does not just arrive out of the blue but rather is seeded by Mercy emotions. When MMNs with strong emotions are encountered, then the Mercy emotion will be interpreted by Teacher thought as Teacher generality, and Teacher thought will then jump emotionally to overgeneralization, because there will be no facts to prevent Teacher thought from overgeneralizing. Saying this more simply, a lifestyle or perceived injustice will be interpreted as a sweeping theory that needs to be adopted as a universal cause by the general population. For instance, suppose that I am black and encounter racial prejudice. Rational thought would attempt to look at the facts and work out ways of changing these facts. Jumping intuitively from lifestyle to universal theory, in contrast, means that my pain needs to be felt by others and should become a universal cause that dominates the attention of others. Using the language of verse 36, each lifestyle is becoming treated as a little god, and those who live normal lives will be expected to worship the lifestyles of those who are driven by potent mental networks. I could give more examples, but it is safer not to because this way of thinking is dominant in today’s society. Any examples that I provide would be instinctively interpreted by many people as blaspheming the new gods of society.

Verse 36 says that this will expand to the more general level of ‘speaking dreadful things against the God of gods’. Dreadful means ‘to be surpassing or extraordinary’. This describes going beyond something in Teacher generality. The ultimate Teacher overgeneralization is mysticism, which makes the sweeping statement that ‘all is one’ by declaring that all Perceiver facts are ultimately illusion. A mental concept of God emerges whenever a sufficiently general Teacher theory applies to personal identity. Thus, the simplest way to form a universal concept of God is by asserting that ‘all is one’ in Teacher thought and then identifying personally with this cosmic unity in Mercy thought. We have just seen that this kind of thinking has emerged within society, because people are extrapolating from personal MMNs of lifestyle to sweeping statements in Teacher thought. From there, it is a short step towards making sweeping statements about God and universality based in MMNs of culture and lifestyle. This will be expressed as the Teacher overgeneralization of ‘universal tolerance’. (The religious version of universal tolerance is ‘the unconditional love of God’.)

Like any overgeneralization, universal tolerance cannot handle Perceiver facts. Thus, any attempt to add factual details to the concept of universal tolerance will be regarded as inherently judgmental and intolerant. And whenever some culture or lifestyle experiences negative consequences, this will be interpreted as prejudice against this culture or lifestyle. Any group or individual that attempts to determine Perceiver facts within this context will be viewed as the source of this prejudice and will be expected to exhibit moral remorse, reaffirm the overgeneralization of universal tolerance, and speak worshipfully of the culture or lifestyle that is experiencing negative consequences.

Using the language of verse 36, subjective identity will ‘speak surpassing things against the God of gods’. In other words, whenever the subjective identity of some group or lifestyle feels slighted, then the concept of universal tolerance will be redefined as showing universal tolerance in a worshipful manner to this specific group or lifestyle. Again, I will avoid giving specific examples because this has become the dominant mindset of much of Western society.

Verse 36 continues “and he will be successful until the indignation is finished, because that which is determined will be done.” Successful means ‘to make prosperous, bring to successful issue’. The word indignation was seen in verb form in verse 30, which was interpreted as subjective identity feeling slighted by the business world. In both cases, the idea is that mental networks are feeling offended and slighted when technical thought is using facts and rational thought to reach conclusions that make personal identity feel bad.

This feeling can be illustrated by the business guarantee of ‘satisfaction or your money back’. A normal guarantee promises that a device or gadget will function properly. Looking at this cognitively, technical thought is guaranteeing that the gadget will function adequately according to the standards of technical thought. For instance, my vacuum cleaner will continue to vacuum adequately. In contrast, ‘satisfaction or your money back’ applies the feelings of subjective thought to the gadgets of technical thought. Saying this more clearly, if technical thought ever functions in a manner that brings displeasure to subjective mental networks, then technical thought will withdraw from the situation and acknowledge the supremacy of mental networks.

This may sound like a trivial application, but it has become an economic and environmental disaster. Quoting from a 2019 article in Bloomberg, “In December, American consumers will return more than 1 million packages to e-commerce retailers each day. It’s a flood of unwanted stuff that’s expected to peak on Jan. 2, which UPS Inc. cheekily calls ‘National Returns Day’… By one recent estimate, they accounted for 5 billion pounds [per year] of landfilled waste in the U.S. alone and an additional 15 million tons of carbon emitted into the atmosphere. At a time when consumers and companies are otherwise rethinking consumption choices in light of climate change, e-commerce returns amount to a hidden environmental crisis… The problem is that consumers are returning more and more every year. In 2018, Americans sent back 10% of their purchases, valued at $369 billion, up from 8% two years earlier. Younger shoppers in particular are more inclined to treat online purchases as rentals, or to buy clothing to try on, then return what doesn’t fit or look good. It’s a global trend: In Sweden, return rates are as high as 60% for some products.” Summarizing, ‘satisfaction or your money back’ is creating 5,000,000,000 pounds of waste in America every year, and this problem is getting worse over time and with the next generation. I mention this example because it deals with the objective realm of things and is therefore emotionally safe. However, I suggest that this is a symptom of a deeper mindset in which cultural groups and lifestyles are being guaranteed ‘satisfaction or your money back’ by society.

I am not suggesting that all societal problems are the result of overgeneralization from lifestyle, because some groups and individuals really are experiencing systemic prejudice. However, because universal tolerance is based in Teacher overgeneralization, any attempt to examine injustice in order to determine the underlying causes will be viewed as intolerance and a threat to the overarching societal theme of universal tolerance. The end result is that people will respond to actual intolerance by carrying out protests in which platitudes are pronounced and authorities are denounced, but nothing really changes. And when nothing changes then the response will be more protests, more platitudes, and more denouncement. The famous quote “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results” may not have been spoken by Einstein, but it does apply to this situation.

Continuing with verse 36, finished means ‘to be complete, at an end, finished, accomplished’. Verse 36 says more literally that ‘the surpassing will make prosperous until the indignation is complete’. This gives the impression that all of the hidden mental networks of lifestyle and personal identity need to succeed in expressing themselves publicly through Teacher overgeneralization. The end of verse 36 adds ‘because that which is determined will be done’. That which is determined is the passive of the verb ‘cut, sharpen, decide’, while be done is the passive of ‘make, do’. This implies that some sort of dividing and cutting is happening mentally which needs to be finished, and that this dividing and cutting is happening passively and not as a result of active thought.

I think I know what this means cognitively. Looking first at the background, all religions currently contain a mix of mysticism and rational thought. Some religions contain more mysticism and less rational thought, but every theologian of every religion that I have encountered so far insists that the core attributes of God and religion are ultimately incomprehensible to human thought and must be ‘believed’ by making universal statements that transcend the Perceiver facts of human rationality. This applies obviously to Buddhism, but it also applies to the monotheism of Judaism, and I have also found that it applies to Christian theologians. I am not saying that Christian theologians are irrational, but rather that every existing system of Christian theology still has a core that is asserted as transcending rational thought. In contrast, I have found that it is possible to use mental symmetry to analyze all of the core aspects of Christian theology using rational thought that extends from the rational thinking of science.

I should emphasize that understanding the core aspects of Christian theology does not eliminate their significance or remove the need for God. In a similar way, science can use rational laws to explain essentially all of the core aspects of the physical universe, but explaining gravity, for instance, does not explain it away. Exclaiming ‘F=ma’ as one steps off a cliff does not make one immune from the effect of stepping off the cliff. And human attempts to apply the laws of nature are always massive approximations based in a major simplification of reality. That is because humans are finite and not infinite. Likewise, understanding the core aspects of Christianity does not eliminate the need to apply these core aspects, because this need is based in the structure of the mind. And even if one can understand to some extent how God thinks and functions, any human attempt to apply this understanding will always be a massive approximation based in major simplification.

Returning now to the question at hand, I suggest that the overgeneralization based in lifestyle needs to continue until the underlying religious assumption of mysticism becomes fully exposed and cut off from rational understanding. Looking at this more carefully, mystical concepts of God are currently private and hidden. As long as they remain private and hidden, they retain their emotional potency and can provide the core motivation for religious thought and behavior. When this underlying thinking becomes apparent and public, then people have to choose between fully embracing irrational thought or choosing to adopt rational thinking.

Looking at this more generally, a new dichotomy will emerge between quiet, rational thought, and emotionally overgeneralizing from personal experience. Saying this in more detail, soft science will either find rational thinking in psychology and cognition, or else turn into ideology based in special interest groups. Religion will either find moral cause-and-effect, or else degrade into universal platitudes based upon personal experiences of spirituality. Politics will either discover the rule of law based upon scientific evidence, or else turn into tribalism masquerading as universality. The socially oppressed will either pursue rational paths of self-improvement, or else be overcome by anger masquerading as universal tolerance. Those whose lifestyles are violating cognitive principles will either have to accept rational thinking and change their lifestyle, or else self-destruct by becoming all-consumed by a universalization of this lifestyle. And those who proclaim absolute truth will either have to submit to the content of this truth, or else turn into a hypocritical parody of morality in which proclaiming absolute truth becomes an attempt to impose my subculture upon the population.

I am writing this at the beginning of 2021. These statements have not all fully come true. But they have become true to an extent that I never would have imagined five years ago. A new dichotomy seems to be emerging within society that is replacing old dichotomies of conservative versus liberal, Christian versus non-Christian, and educated versus uneducated. In simple terms, the new dichotomy appears to be sane versus insane. At the moment, this dichotomy between sanity and insanity appears limited to certain contexts. Thus, it is possible for a person to be sane within one context and insane within another. But these pockets of sanity—or insanity—appear to be spreading within people’s minds, driving them either more sane or else more insane. In other words, a new polarization is emerging based upon sanity.

(Adding a comment from the middle of 2022, we are now in day 180 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Russia has continued to exhibit an Orcish level of idiotic evil that I did not know could exist within Western civilization, leading increasingly to a dichotomy between Western sanity and Russian civilization-threatening insanity. It is not that the West has become more moral but rather that Russia has become so blatantly immoral as to make typical semi-sane Western thought look like a paragon of rational morality. This Russian insanity has occurred primarily at the level of physical existence, an area of thought where Western society still maintains some sanity as a result of objective scientific thought.)

A Loss of Theology and Femininity 11:37

Verse 37 describes the kind of irrational thinking that is emerging. “And he will show no regard for the gods of his fathers or for the desire of women, nor will he show regard for any other god; for he will boast against them all.” The word translated gods is not the word ‘El’ that was used three times in verse 36 but rather the standard word Elohim in the construct case, which is translated elsewhere as ‘God of’. Thus, verse 37 appears to be referring to ‘God of his fathers’. And regard means either ‘discern’ or ‘understand’. References to men are being interpreted as referring to male thought. Male technical thought from the fathers that talks about God would refer to theology. Thus, this phrase appears to be saying that theology will no longer be either discerned or understood. This is an accurate statement because I have found that society has become essentially post-theology. This applies to both religious and secular thought, and to both academia and normal religious experience.

For instance, I presented a paper on mental symmetry at the Pacific Northwest American Academy of Religion regional conference in 2015. I discovered that theological questions were no longer of any concern. In fact, the relevance of theology was not even being debated. Instead, the vast majority of participants were starting with the underlying assumption that theology was irrelevant.

The next phrase refers to female thought: ‘or for the desire of women’. The word desire means ‘desire, delight’. This noun has a male and female form and the female form is being used. (Adjectives agree with nouns in Hebrew, but this is a case of a noun being either male or female.) What is being described here is a loss of the ability to enjoy pleasurable feminine emotions. Having lived in Korea for several years, I understand what this means. The women of Korea (and Asia in general) dress and behave in a feminine fashion. The typical North American woman is too busy defending her rights to permit herself to be beautiful, graceful, or—perish the thought—cute.

I need to add that feminine does not mean dumb and cute does not mean infantile. One can explain this cognitively by referring to the three stages of learning some skill or expertise. The first stage of beginner uses the untrained intuition of raw female thought to perform confidently but poorly. The second stage of student uses male technical thinking to learn facts and practice skills, but performance is wooden and mechanical. The third stage of expert combines male technical thought with female intuition to perform quickly and expertly. A woman who reaches this third level of expert is capable of being both feminine and extremely competent. In contrast, a woman who rejects male technical thought as ‘the imposition of power’ condemns herself to becoming what is known politely as a Karen. Wikipedia explains that “Karen is a pejorative term for a woman seeming to be entitled or demanding beyond the scope of what is normal. The term also refers to memes depicting white women who use their privilege to demand their own way. Depictions also may include demanding to ‘speak to the manager’, being racist or sporting a particular bob cut hairstyle.”

Looking at this cognitively, in both cases normal thought is being overridden by lifestyle extrapolating into universality. On the male side, theology uses male technical thought to analyze the relationship between God in Teacher thought and personal identity in Mercy thought. This is being replaced by making vague universal statements based upon personal experiences of spirituality. On the female side, femininity combines MMNs of sensitivity and vulnerability with TMNs of grace, elegance, and beauty. This is being replaced by making universal judgments based upon MMNs of lifestyle. One can understand what this means by quoting from the Wikipedia article on women’s studies. The article begins by explaining that “Women’s studies is an academic field that draws on feminist and interdisciplinary methods in order to place women’s lives and experiences at the center of study, while examining social and cultural constructs of gender; systems of privilege and oppression; and the relationships between power and gender as they intersect with other identities and social locations such as race, sexual orientation, socio-economic class, and disability.” Notice how MMNs of personal experience are the starting point, and the underlying assumption is the postmodern assertion that all apparent Teacher theories are merely expressions of personal power and lifestyle.

The third phrase in verse 37 says ‘nor will he show regard for any other god’. The word ‘other’ is not in the original Hebrew, and god is ‘Eloah’, a word that only occurs in Daniel in 11:37-39, where it is used four times. It is actually the singular of ‘Elohim’, which is the normal word for God. The implication is that these next verses are describing a strange form of monotheism. Regard is the same word that was used at the beginning of this verse, which means ‘discern’ or ‘understand’. This suggests that the very concept of God will become rejected. Looking at this cognitively, a concept of God emerges when a sufficiently general Teacher theory applies to personal identity. The basic premise of postmodern thought is that personal identity is too complicated to be capable of being analyzed by any general Teacher theory. Stated simply, ‘How dare you try to analyze my lifestyle or my culture?’ Instead, one is supposed to jump intuitively from some specific lifestyle or culture to Teacher overgeneralization. Stated simply, one is supposed to verbally profess universal tolerance while expressing this as total acceptance for the current culture or lifestyle that is demanding tolerance.

Verse 37 finishes by describing the true source of societal authority. ‘For he will boast against them all.’ This is not the best translation. Boast is actually the reflexive form of ‘to grow up, become great’. A more accurate translation is, ‘above all he will make himself great’. ‘He’ presumably refers to the king of the North, which represents subjective thought. Subjective thought is making itself a source of universality that is above all other sources. In other words, one expresses ‘universal tolerance’ by expressing total acceptance for the lifestyle or culture that currently feels that it is not experiencing universal tolerance.

A New God of Safe Spaces 11:38

Verse 38 describes a shift from universal tolerance to the preservation of lifestyles. “But in his place he will honor a god of fortresses, a god whom his fathers did not know; he will honor him with gold, silver, precious stones, and treasures.” The two references to God in this verse are again ‘Eloah’, the unusual form that is only found in Daniel in 11:36-39. Place actually means ‘base, pedestal, office’. And fortress means ‘a place or means of safety, protection’. This term was last seen in verse 38 in the phrase ‘desecrate the sanctuary fortress’, which was interpreted as no longer respecting traditional concepts of religion and holiness. The implication is that a new sense of religion and holiness is being established, and that questioning the supremacy of this new form of holiness is being regarded as blasphemy. This is backed up by the verb honor, which means ‘to be heavy, weighty, or burdensome’. This verb is only used twice in the book of Daniel, both times in this verse. It is used to honor people and it is also used to give honor or weight to God. Using familiar language, one is not supposed to ‘make light’ of that which is regarded as ‘heavy or weighty’. So far in this chapter, postmodernism has belittled all MMNs of status and authority. Now something has finally emerged that must not be belittled but rather regarded as heavy and weighty.

This new source of weightiness is a ‘god of fortresses’, or using modern language, a god of safe places. Quoting from Wikipedia, “The term safe space refers to places created for individuals who feel marginalized to come together to communicate regarding their experiences with marginalization, most commonly located on university campuses in the western world, but also at workplaces, as in the case of Nokia.” Looking at this cognitively, it is a contradiction in terms to proclaim universal tolerance while unquestioningly accepting the mental networks of some specific culture or lifestyle. A safe space solves this contradiction by replacing Teacher universality with the appearance of Teacher universality.

Looking at this further, Teacher thought can make universal statements as long as Perceiver thought does not step in to point out any contradictions. For instance, a tribal chieftain can declare himself to be master of the universe as long as no one in the tribe walks over the hill and encounters some person from another tribe. Similarly, a safe place generates the feeling of universal tolerance by ensuring that no voice of disapproval enters the sanctum of the protected culture or lifestyle.

The Internet makes it possible to have online safe spaces known as echo chambers. Quoting from Wikipedia, “An echo chamber refers to situations in which beliefs are amplified or reinforced by communication and repetition inside a closed system and insulated from rebuttal. By participating in an echo chamber, people are able to seek out information that reinforces their existing views without encountering opposing views, potentially resulting in an unintended exercise in confirmation bias. Echo chambers may increase social and political polarization and extremism.” Notice how the appearance of Teacher universality is being generated by ensuring that no dissenting voices are heard. However, the Internet echo chamber has the additional benefit of including a selection of voices from around the globe. Physically speaking, one is ‘going beyond the current valley’ to include outsiders from other places. But one is still mentally limiting oneself to the valley of some lifestyle or culture. In the words of Wikipedia, “Another emerging term for this echoing and homogenizing effect within social media communities on the Internet is cultural tribalism.”

One can see that such a strategy provides only the illusion of universal tolerance because of the way that the term ‘LGBT’ keeps evolving. It started out as gay/lesbian, but the current approved alphabet soup in 2021 appears to be ‘LGBTQIA2S+’. At least, that is the term that is being used on the official British Columbia Cancer website. However, if one looks at the URL, the webpage is actually titled ‘lgbt with cancer websites’, which presumably describes the term that was acceptable when the webpage was originally written. The urban dictionary uses the term LGBTQQIP2SAA, and provides the following sample sentences: “Person 1: ‘I support LGBT rights.’ Person 2: ‘The correct acronym is LGBTQQIP2SAA. Please try to be all-inclusive.’” The point is that attempting to combine universal tolerance with supporting specific lifestyles is an impossible task, because it is a contradiction in terms. The only way to make all the groups who demand universal tolerance happy is by making the concept of universal tolerance so cumbersome that it loses any sense of universality. What primarily remains is creating the illusion of universal tolerance through the formation of safe spaces.

Verse 38 adds that this is ‘a god whom his fathers did not know’. Know was used previously in verse 32 to talk about those who know their God. I suggested there that this knowing includes both subjective and objective. Similarly, verse 38 describes the emergence of a new concept of God that goes beyond the Teacher overgeneralization of universal tolerance to include content. Those who are following this new concept of God will be consciously aware that they are making a break with the male technical thinking of previous religion. They will know that they are not following the God of their fathers, and they will take steps to ensure that the God of their fathers is excluded. I think that most Western countries have now reached this stage where Christian belief is no longer tolerated, but rather seen as a vestige of male patriarchy that needs to be eliminated from current society. And official steps will be taken to ensure that this is the case.

The end of verse 38 describes the content that is being added to this new concept of God. “He will honor him with gold, silver, precious stones, and treasures.” Honor is the same word that was used earlier in verse which means ‘to be heavy, weighty, or burdensome’. In other words, this new concept of God will be viewed as weighty, something about which one must not make light.

Gold and silver were previously mentioned in verse 8, which was interpreted as Victorian objective thought expropriating the symbols and rituals of Christianity, leading to the combination of God-and-country. Here the subjective king of the North is reestablishing the weightiness of gold and silver. This gives the impression that subjective thought is rediscovering concepts of holiness and honor.

For instance, in 2020 the BC curriculum was modified to ensure that Native culture and spirituality would be regarded as the central theme around which all subjects would be taught. (And I think that other provinces in Canada have taken similar steps.) This is not a matter of having a class on Native culture and spirituality. Instead Native culture and spirituality is being treated as the universal concept in Teacher thought that must be given weight in all subjects and in every grade. For instance, when one teaches German, one must do so in such a way that honors native culture. When one teaches mathematics, one should do so in the light of native culture.

(Added in 2022: This Canadian honoring of Native culture and spirituality is an outgrowth of the 2007 Truth and Reconciliation Commission which officially recognized the injustices suffered by Natives in the residential school system. Natives were systemically mistreated and Native culture was systemically suppressed in the residential school system, and Pope Francis recently came to Canada to apologize for this mistreatment. However, Canada has officially made the intuitive leap of redefining universal tolerance as building the entire Canadian educational system around honoring Native culture and religion. This intuitive leap is the subject of verse 38.)

Looking at the official BC curriculum website, all of the documents about teaching various subjects open with the following paragraph. “In B.C.’s redesigned curriculum, Indigenous knowledge and perspectives are integrated throughout all areas of learning and are evident in the curriculum’s rationale statements, goals, big ideas, mandated learning standards, and elaborations. The First Peoples Principles of Learning offer a crucial lens for curriculum, placing a significant importance on the authentic integration of Indigenous knowledge and perspectives in relevant and meaningful ways.” This is applied to the teaching of German in the following manner, “For example, the Grade 5 German curriculum includes the following explicit reference: Grade 5, Content, First Peoples perspectives connecting language and culture, including histories, identity, and place e.g., conversations with an Elder about local celebrations, traditions, and protocols, identity is influenced by, for example, traditions, protocols, celebrations, and festivals. A sense of place can be influenced by, for example, territory, food, clothing, and creative works.”

I will make several remarks. First, every language is associated with its own culture. Therefore, when one teaches German language, one needs to associate this with German culture. Having ‘conversations with an elder about local celebrations, traditions, and protocols’ when one is teaching German does violence to German culture. Second, when all subjects are being taught in the light of some general concept, then this concept is taking on the role of a meta-theory. If all subjects are being taught in the light of Native culture and spirituality, then it is taking on the role of a meta-theory. For instance, mental symmetry is capable of being used as a meta-theory to tie together many subjects. A legitimate meta-theory will be held together by Teacher emotions, because Teacher thought will find pleasure in the way that the meta-theory brings unity to all of the various subjects. However, when a specific culture that is incapable of bringing order to all subjects is being treated as a meta-theory that ties together many subjects, then this is an example of extrapolating from specific culture to Teacher overgeneralization. Third, this is an official BC government document. This means that considerable resources are being expended to ensure that weight is being given to the subjective experiences of Native culture and spirituality. Fourth, when treating a specific culture as a meta-theory in the entire school curriculum is being mandated by the government, then this means that those who have power within society are using their emotional status to impose an ideology upon all members of society. Finally, one would think that the parents of British Columbia would be concerned about the meta-theory that is being taught to their children. This discussion has not occurred. Thus, this decision really is being regarded by the general population as a weighty subject that is beyond discussion.

In order to avoid this being interpreted as an anti-Native diatribe, I will briefly mention a similar example from the evangelical Christian subculture. Back in the 1980s, a church that I was connected with ran an ACE school, using the educational curriculum from ACE. Wikipedia summarizes that “Accelerated Christian Education is an American company which produces the Accelerated Christian Education school curriculum structured around a literal interpretation of the Bible and which teaches other academic subjects from a Protestant fundamentalist or conservative Evangelical standpoint. Founded in 1970 by Donald and Esther Howard, ACE’s website states it is used in over 6,000 schools in 145 countries. ACE has been criticized for its content, heavy reliance on the use of rote recall as a learning tool and for the educational outcomes of pupils on leaving the Accelerated Christian Education system both in the US and the United Kingdom.” In other words, ACE attempts to do with Christianity what the BC curriculum is currently attempting to do with Native culture and spirituality, by using Christianity as a meta-theory to tie together all of the subjects.

Even in the 1980s when I did not have an integrated understanding, this attempt to use Christianity as a meta-theory felt contrived. Much of this ‘integration’ consisted of adding Scripture verses, using examples from Christian culture, and tacking on information about character traits, similar to the way that Native content is now being tacked on to other subjects in BC. I have had some brief discussions with ACE representatives more recently, and it appears that the curriculum has made some progress in terms of intellectual content and Christian integration. However, one is still dealing with an example of using something as a meta-theory which is incapable of carrying out the task. My general thesis is that Christianity is capable of carrying out the task of acting as a meta-theory—but only if it is translated into the language of cognition. In contrast, the ACE curriculum made it clear to me that Christianity as absolute truth is not up to the task. But Christianity as absolute truth does have some abstract technical thought, while I am not aware of any extensive abstract technical thought within Native culture or spirituality. Instead, everything appears to be interpreted using the subjective thinking of mental networks.

This native focus upon mental networks is described one author who has written about Canadian higher education for several years. The article begins by portraying the current Canadian situation. “From the University of Calgary to The University of Saskatchewan to Acadia University in New Brunswick, Canadian deans are pledging to infuse their curricula with a doctrine often described as ‘Indigenous Ways of Knowing’ (IWK), which teaches that Indigenous peoples arrive at their understanding of the world in a unique way.” The author adds that ‘IWK’ is not defined clearly, which means that one is dealing with Teacher overgeneralization. “I’ve been writing about higher education for a decade, and have investigated the issue of IWK on different campuses. Invariably, my attempts to determine the exact parameters of IWK always meet with this somewhat gauzy, defensive response. Oddly, the most zealous proponents of IWK also are the ones who are the most reluctant to describe what it is.” However, it definitely involves mental networks and intuition. “Restoule claims that, for Indigenous people, ‘the senses can know more deeply and concretely than knowledge gained through reading and being told.’ He asserts that ‘knowledge is sometimes revealed through dreams, visions and intuitions’… a careful reader will note that what Restoule is advocating here is a combination of magical thinking and spirituality.” The author concludes that this is actually a manifestation of postmodern thought. “Oren Amitay lectures on psychology at Ryerson University in Toronto… He’s one of the few Canadian academics who will say openly what many scholars will only say privately: that IDK is simply a new bottle in which to sell the postmodernist idea that all truths are equally valid.” Notice the weight that is being given to Native culture and spirituality by most Canadian academics.

Returning to the adjectives used in verse 38, this is the only use of stone in Daniel, and a stone represents a solid fact in Perceiver thought. For instance, one can see in the previous paragraph that Native spirituality is now being treated as a source of solid Perceiver facts for Canadian academia. These stones are precious, which means ‘precious, rare, splendid, weighty’. This describes the type of solid truth that one acquires from the words of a holy book, which is also treated as precious, rare, splendid, and weighty. The final adjective is treasures, which means ‘to desire, take pleasure in’. This goes beyond academic thought to an emotional infatuation. And when one is becoming publicly infatuated with ideas, then one has entered the realm of Teacher emotions.

Looking at this cognitively, modern science uses objective thought, which means protecting technical thinking by suppressing emotions. Mercy emotions are avoided by remaining objective, while Teacher emotions of generality are avoided through specialization. However, scientific thought will not succeed in remaining objective, because it will become motivated by the Teacher emotion provided by paradigms, and Thomas Kuhn described the nature of these Teacher emotions. I have tried for many years to point out at an academic level the existence of Teacher emotion. However, I have found that academia is quite resistant to the idea of Teacher emotions, even when research strongly suggests that it exists.

When Native spirituality is being treated as a meta-theory by academia, then this forces researchers to deal with the topic of Teacher thought, Teacher generality, and Teacher emotion. Saying this more simply, it is possible to ignore Teacher emotion when society is implicitly being guided by a meta-theory that is consistent with scientific thought. But when academia itself becomes ruled by a meta-theory that is incompatible with scientific thought and is incapable of adequately playing the role of a meta-theory, then the survival of scientific thought itself depends upon thinking carefully about Teacher emotions and meta-theories. This is similar to the way that the public celebration of various lifestyles has forced Christianity to deal with moral topics that it would rather sweep under the rug and ignore.

The Triumph of Political Correctness 11:39

In verse 39, this process continues. “And he will take action against the strongest of fortresses with the help of a foreign god.” ‘He’ again refers to the subjective king of the North. The word fortress that was used in verse 38 is the same word ‘place or means of safety’ that was translated as fortress in verse 38. However, this is then combined with another word for fortress that is different than the one used in verse 38, which comes from a verb that means ‘to cut off, make inaccessible, enclose’. That word was used previously in verse 24, which was interpreted as deconstructionism making academic assaults upon academia back in the 1970s. This leads to the compound word ‘inaccessible-enclosed places of place-of-safety’. (Nouns can be jammed together in Hebrew by using the construct case.) And take action is the normal verb for ‘do, make’.

Looking at this cognitively, the objective thought of the king of the South used to be the norm for society. However, subjective thinking has now spread its influence and control to the point where objective thought has become a kind of refuge from subjective emotions, a safe space from emotional control that protects itself by being different than the dominant mindset of subjectivity. For instance, this describes much of the hard sciences today, which have become a safe space for rational thought because they deal with objects and physical matter rather than subjective opinion. Until now, these safe spaces of rational thought have been inaccessible to personal opinion and have acted as enclosed places where subjective opinion does not reach. For instance, the engineer can live in a world of facts and mathematical theories surrounded by people who also believe in facts and mathematical theories, supported by interacting with a physical world that is guided by facts and mathematical theories. In verse 39, these sanctums of rational thought are being invaded.

Continuing with verse 39, the word foreign means ‘that which is foreign, foreignness’ and is used once in Daniel. ‘The help of’ is in italics and is not in the original Hebrew. And this is the final time that the unusual word for God (Eloah) is used in Daniel. Putting this together, the action against the inaccessible fortress of a safe place is being motivated by ‘a foreign God’. The normal God of Western civilization is the God of the Enlightenment—a sort of un-God referred to in science as Nature with a capital ‘N’. Nature is never referred to explicitly as God, and any attempt to connect Nature with God will be strongly repudiated. However, Nature will continually be described using attributes that refer only to a divine being. The underlying assumption is that Nature functions rationally. The foreign God will violate these three attributes: First, the underlying assumption will be that this foreign God functions intuitively in a manner that ‘transcends’ rational Enlightenment thought. Second, this foreign God will be described as some sort of spiritual entity, and the very concept of Nature will be redefined as interacting intuitively and emotionally with the natural world. Finally, specific divine attributes will not be ascribed to this new foreign God, but rather will be replaced by vague comments about the interconnectedness of Nature.

This idea of a foreign God can be seen in the article on Native spirituality mentioned earlier. The author explains that “In recent centuries, the Western tradition has created a suite of intellectual tools that did not develop in other cultures–such as the scientific method, which requires that new claims be tested, replicated and scrutinized by one’s peers before being accepted. As applied through such mechanisms as peer review, the scientific method permits us to separate fact from folklore. To the extent the implementation of IWK would require the dilution or relaxation of these practices, it would undermine one of the primary purposes of our universities since the Enlightenment.” Notice how the new spirituality is foreign to the way of thinking that has been used by academia since the Enlightenment. Notice also how the ‘safe space’ of academic thought which previously regarded itself as a fortress of truth that separated ‘fact from folklore’ is now under attack. The author complains that “Many ordinary people already are too susceptible to claims that mainstream medicine and science is trumped by some higher, spiritually experienced system of natural energy flow… Yet, as Widdowson points out, traditional Indigenous healers now are being invited to Canadian medical schools to teach similarly unproven theories.”

I do not think that this problem is limited to Canada. Instead, I think that most areas of the Western world are experiencing some local version of this kind of thinking. I mention the Canadian example because it is especially obvious, because I am aware of it, and because it affects me personally as a Canadian. One of the characteristics of this ‘foreign God’ is that it will not be discussed in normal conversation or normal media, either because people feel at a religious level that the topic is too weighty to discuss, or else because they are afraid of the consequences that they will suffer by questioning the weightiness of this new God. The author of the article mentions both possibilities. “It is possible that some non-Indigenous Canadians are promoting these ideas… because they believe that Indigenous people, by their very biological composition, embody ‘quasi-mystical, even magical, properties’ that are inaccessible to white people. But my own sense is that most of those who sign on are simply afraid of being called racists.”

Looking briefly at the United States, I think that the ‘foreign God’ there is being provided by evangelical Christianity. That is because the public display of evangelical Christendom changed into something that was totally foreign to historical evangelical Christianity during the presidency of Donald Trump. Many evangelical Christians acted as if they and their president embodied ‘quasi-mystical, even magical, properties’ that are inaccessible to those who are not evangelical Christians. Many of the supporters of President Trump regarded him and his presidency as too weighty to discuss. And in the same way that the promotion of Native spirituality in Canada is threatening the very structure of academia and education, so the behavior of Trump and his followers threatened the very structure of American democracy. Academia has regarded itself as a safe place that is separated from the mental networks of religion and society. Native spirituality threatens this inner sanctum of academic thought in Canada. Similarly, the institutions of American democracy have regarded themselves as safe places that are separated from the mental networks of religion and society. The behavior of Donald Trump during his presidency threatened this inner sanctum, and his supporters physically invaded this inner sanctum on January 6, 2021.

I should add that America is also experiencing a form of invasion by subjective thought that is similar to that being experienced in Canada. However, as this is being written in early 2021, the left-wing version is more prevalent in Canada while the right-wing version is more prevalent in the United States. In other words, verse 39 is describing something that transcends normal divisions between liberal and conservative, or between religious and secular. In fact, it appears that that the divine purpose for allowing something like verse 39 to happen is to break down traditional divisions, such as liberal versus conservative, or religious versus secular. This is being replaced by a new division between sane and insane.

I am NOT suggesting that all evangelical Christians and all Natives are insane. Both of these groups possess significant historical wisdom and knowledge. However, this historical wisdom and knowledge has been hijacked by various internal and external forces to generate a concept of God that is quite foreign to this historical wisdom and knowledge. For instance, during the presidency of Donald Trump, even some of my Canadian evangelical Christian friends starting spouting irrational paranoia about American politics. Similarly, it is educationally insane to suggest that Native wisdom and knowledge is capable of being treated as the meta-theory around which all education is centered. I am not making this as an offhand statement, because I have spent decades developing mental symmetry into a form that is capable of being used as a meta-theory around which all education can be centered.

Verse 39 finishes, “he will give great honor to the one who acknowledge him and will make them rulers over the many, and will parcel out land for a price.” I am not quite sure about the grammar of the first phrase. Acknowledge means ‘to regard, recognize’. This is not so much a matter of worship or submission but rather one of giving lip service. In modern Hebrew, this verb is used to indicate that one is acquainted with some person. Honor is the noun form of the word that means ‘to be heavy, weighty’. This noun is fairly common in the Old Testament and is translated usually as ‘glory’, but it is only used once in Daniel. Great is quite common as an adjective, but it is only used twice as a verb in Daniel, here and in 12:4. It is usually translated as ‘multiply’ or ‘increase’. Thus, my intermediate knowledge of Hebrew leads me to conclude that the KJV provides a more accurate translation: ‘with a strange god, whom he shall acknowledge and increase with glory’. It is the foreign God who is being acknowledged and whose weightiness is being multiplied. This definitely describes the new sense of spirituality. Even if one does not subscribe to this way of thinking, one is still expected to make lip service to it. And this new spirituality is supposed to be treated with weightiness and respect in more and more aspects of society.

Make them rulers is the causative (hifil) form of ‘to rule, have dominion, reign’. And many is the normal form of ‘much, many, great’ that was just used as a verb three words earlier. Applying this to current society, there will be a change in leadership and government based upon verbal acknowledgment of the new foreign God. Those who give lip service to this new God will be given position and power, while those who do not give lip service will be removed from power. This requirement to acknowledge the new God will be extended to many different areas.

Land means ‘ground, land’, and in other essays ‘land’ is interpreted as the solid ground of rational thought. It was used only once previously in Daniel in 11:9, which was interpreted as objective thought in the late Victorian era. Divided is the intensive (pi’el) of ‘divide, share’, which is only used once in Daniel. And price means ‘price, hire’. Stated crudely, acknowledging the new God will become good business. In this vein, the article on Native spirituality finishes by pointing out that “We also should remember that, however warm and fuzzy the principles of IWK may sound, it also has become a business opportunity. In recent years, the demand for more IWK in curricula has created a niche for those who present themselves as an expert in this vaguely defined area. As with other efforts to expand the influence of other cultures in schools and businesses, IWK draws in educators, consultants and administrators whose job is to help these institutions match action to words.”

Universal tolerance says that unity can be achieved by ignoring the facts that divide one group from another. ‘Dividing’ implies that the concept of universal tolerance has now become empty words, and it also suggests that rule under the new foreign God will become fragmented rather than integrated. For instance, one can see this fragmentation in the concept of cultural appropriation. Quoting from Wikipedia, “When cultural elements are copied from a minority culture by members of a dominant culture, and these elements are used outside of their original cultural context… this is cultural appropriation… Cultural appropriation is considered harmful by various groups and individuals, including Indigenous people working for cultural preservation, those who advocate for collective intellectual property rights of the originating, minority cultures, and those who have lived or are living under colonial rule. Cultural appropriation can include exploitation of another culture’s religious and cultural traditions, fashion, symbols, language, and music. Those who see this appropriation as exploitative state that cultural elements are lost or distorted when they are removed from their originating cultural contexts, and that such displays are disrespectful or even a form of desecration.” Notice how there is no mention of universal tolerance. There is also no mention of enjoying or celebrating culture. Instead the focus is upon postmodern feelings of being ‘oppressed by the majority’, and the cultural elements of an ‘oppressed minority’ are being regarded as too weighty to be shared or practiced outside of the cultural group. Looking at this cognitively, the cultures of oppressed minorities are being given the weight of holiness so that they can act as ‘safe spaces’.

And Wikipedia points this out. “Critics note that the concept is often misunderstood or misapplied by the general public, and that charges of ‘cultural appropriation’ are at times misapplied to situations such as trying food from a different culture or learning about different cultures. Others state that the act of cultural appropriation as it is usually defined does not meaningfully constitute social harm, or the term lacks conceptual coherence. Additionally, the term can set arbitrary limits on intellectual freedom, artists’ self-expression, reinforce group divisions, or promote a feeling of enmity or grievance rather than of liberation.” Summarizing, the idea of ‘cultural appropriation’ reduces cross-cultural interaction, is not based in Teacher understanding, and replaces one form of oppression with another.

I should add that I know something personally about being persecuted for my religion and culture and am not just speaking as a member of the ‘white, male, privileged culture’. When I was in grade 12, I was assistant concertmaster of the Saskatoon Symphony and was invited to be concertmaster of a new chamber orchestra. However, I had to join the Musician’s Union, a closed shop, North America wide, musician’s union controlled from New York. When I asked to read the constitution of the local chapter, I was told that I would have to join before being able to read the constitution. I chose not to join because of cultural and religious reasons from my Mennonite upbringing. As a result I never played another professional gig in Saskatchewan. Thus, I had a career forbidden to me by an institution of power based in the foreign city of New York. And as far as I can remember, nobody outside of my immediate family supported me, not a single musician and not a single Christian. So I know what it is like to be personally persecuted for my religion and culture by some dominant majority. And I could mention several other episodes of being ostracized by some group because of my idealism and convictions. However, this personal standing for principles has given me the mental backbone that has made it possible for me to pursue mental symmetry. Similarly, I suggest that being part of an oppressed minority can also be treated as an opportunity for personal growth—an opportunity that the dominant majority does not have. Quoting from my mother, one can respond to injustice either by becoming bitter or better.

And this personal example is appropriate for our analysis of Daniel 11. Verses 33-35 described those who had insight and knew their God. That group has not been mentioned for several verses. Where are they? My guess is that they are following a path like mine, being excluded from society and doing their best to learn from their problems without being sucked into the bitterness of the ‘God of safe spaces’. This is not an easy path to follow. For instance, during the current covid pandemic, many evangelical Christians have been viewing the shutting down of church services as a frontal attack upon the ‘safe spaces’ of the evangelical subculture. But that is also a ‘foreign God’. I grew up attending evangelical churches, and I was taught that the Christian Church grows under persecution. Churches are not being persecuted during the covid pandemic; they can still meet online. But the weightiness of a physical church service as a ‘safe space’ is being violated, and this emotional violation of cultural safe spaces has become more weighty to many evangelical Christians than maintaining physical ‘safe spaces’. That describes insane thinking, and some Christians have literally died as a result of demanding their right to have their emotional ‘safe space’. (As did some Ultra-Orthodox Jewish leaders.)

The final phrase of verse 39 talks about ‘parceling out land for a price’, and we have interpreted this as the commercialization of the new foreign God. Looking at this cognitively, the basic principle of business is buy low, sell high. Saying this more carefully, concrete technical thought uses a knowledge of cause-and-effect to find opportunities by comparing costs with benefits. When a group of people adds emotional weight to some set of experiences, objects, or knowledge, and this emotional weight is not shared by the average person, then this describes a business opportunity, because one can buy items cheaply from the average person and then make a tidy profit by repackaging these items as weighty items associated with the special group. Going further, if that group proclaims that rational thought must not be used to evaluate these weighty items, then one can make more money by selling the appearance of emotional weight rather than the actual substance. For instance, if some group thinks that crystals have magical powers, then money can be made by taking common crystals and packaging them in a manner that creates feelings of magical power.

Rational Backlash versus Institutional Onslaught 11:40

In verse 40 there is finally a backlash from the king of the South of objective thought. “And at the end time the king of the South will wage war with him.” The ‘end of time’ has been mentioned several times in chapter 11. Verse 27 said that the end would still be at the appointed time, indicating that the end of time has not yet arrived. We interpreted that as referring to the 1970s, and many Christians thought that that was the end of time, as illustrated by the success of the 1970 book The Late Great Planet Earth. Wikipedia relates that “The New York Times declared it to be the bestselling nonfiction book of the 1970s. The book was first featured on a prime time television special featuring Hal Lindsey in 1974 to 1975 with an audience of 17,000,000.” But the 1970s were not the end of time. Going further, verse 35 talked about the followers of God being ‘whitened until the end time’. Looking at this personally, I have often felt over the last years that society could not could not regress any further, but things kept continuing without coming to an end—and I still had more lessons to learn. I am sure that many others have felt similar.

Verse 40, in contrast, says that the end of time has been reached, which implies that this will be the final backlash from objective thought. I do not know if we in early 2021 have reached this end time. There has been a significant backlash by objective thought against subjective mental networks during the covid pandemic because individuals, groups, and governments all over the world have appealed for rational thought. However, this appeal has been within the realm of the objective, because dealing with a physical virus means taking objective measures to preserve the physical functioning and safety of the physical body. Similarly, the recent election of Joe Biden was viewed by many as a reaffirmation of rational thought. However, this choosing of rational thinking has been largely limited to the realm of the objective, because I do not think that the underlying subjective assumptions of universal tolerance and safe spaces have been addressed.

Summarizing, the beginning of 2021 may correspond to verse 40, but we may also be still within verse 39. Only time will tell. In contrast, we will see when looking at the rest of the chapter that it does not correspond to current history, which implies that it is still in the future. (Note from 2022: The unending war crimes being committed by Russia in Ukraine are leading to a strong backlash of rational thought, in which the average Western person is asserting that Western civilization itself is being threatened by the irrational mental networks of Russian superiority and cruelty. I think that this is as far as it can go, because going any further would lead to nuclear warfare and the end of modern civilization.)

Returning to verse 40, wage war is in the reflexive and means to ‘engage in thrusting with’. The actual word for ‘battle, war was used in verse 20 and verse 25. Verse 20 said that there would not be war, and that described the peace movement of the 1960s which happened in the place of war. Similarly, verse 25 talked about mobilizing for war, and the major riots of 1968 did come close to all-out warfare in many countries. Verse 40, in contrast, talks about thrusting, which implies that each side is attempting to poke holes in the other side. This type of belligerent interaction could be seen during the covid pandemic, because the pro-mask and anti-mask crowds fought intensely but did not reach the level of shooting guns at each other in an organized manner. Notice that it is the king of the South who is ‘engaging in thrusting with’. This implies that objective thought is still attempting to be somewhat polite and rational.

The response from the king of the North, in contrast, shows no inhibitions or desire to ‘play by the rules’. “And the king of the North will storm against him with chariots, horsemen, and with many ships; and he will enter countries, overflow them, and pass through.” Storm is the reflexive (hitpa’el) form of ‘sweep or whirl away’. Air represents the realm of Teacher thought. Thus, a whirlwind would describe a flurry of words designed to blow away the opposition. And the use of the reflexive implies that those who are generating this whirlwind of speech are themselves getting ‘into a tizzy’. This verbal storm is being directed against the objective king of the South.

It is interesting that both verbs are in the reflexive. In other words, objective thought is attempting to thrust and parry with subjective emotions while itself remaining within the verbal thrusting and parrying of objective thought. In response, mental networks are responding with a verbal tempest as well as allowing themselves to be emotionally riled up by their verbal tempest. For instance, one could see this contrast in behavior in the two sides during the covid pandemic and the presidency of Donald Trump. On the one hand, the Democrats generally presented facts and tried to stick with the facts, while the Republicans spouted nonsense and allowed their thinking to be overcome by this nonsense. I am NOT suggesting that Democrats are totally rational. The primary struggle during this presidency involved the objective realm of facts and viruses, and within this objective realm, the Democrats used rational thought while the Republicans did not. Stating this more objectively, Donald Trump made 30,573 false claims during his presidency. The article in the Seattle Times describes a level of obsessive lying that can accurately be described as a verbal tempest: “Trump made false claims about just about everything, big and small, so the Fact Checker database provides a window into his obsessions (and the news cycle) at the time. When Trump felt under siege or in trouble, he responded by trying to craft an alternative reality for his supporters – and to viciously attack his foes. Nearly half of the false claims were communicated at his campaign rallies or via his now-suspended Twitter account.”

Continuing with verse 40, a chariot could be described as ‘a ship of the land’ that is pulled by a horse. Horses represent military and organizational might, because in biblical times, horses represented the epitome of military might and required considerable organization to maintain. This interpretation is explicitly supported by the word horsemen and the word ships. These three words are only used once in Daniel. (The word for ship in verse 30 was a different word that is also found only once in Daniel.) A ship was interpreted as an organization, such as a company, that floats on the sea of Mercy experiences. Putting this together, when objective thought attempts to poke back at subjective mental networks, then subjective thought will not respond with rational thought or dialogue but rather will unleash organizational and corporate structures upon objective thought. The adjective many indicates that this will be a multi-pronged response.

Verse 40 says that ‘he will enter countries, overflow them, and pass through’. The word country means ‘earth, land’ and is being interpreted as the solid ground of rational thought. Overflow means ‘to overflow, rinse or wash off’. Water represents Mercy experiences. Therefore, ‘overflowing’ indicates an attempt to overwhelm someone with a flood of emotional experiences. Looking at this cognitively, subjective thought will attempt to use emotional experiences to overwhelm the solid ground of rational thought. Verse 40 says that this will happen to countries in the plural, which means that this attack on rational thought will extend beyond the objective realm of the king of the South. Pass through means ‘to pass over, through’. This implies that the emotional outburst against rational thought will not be sustained but rather will flood through some region before moving on to another ‘land’.

Escaping the Emotional Onslaught 11:41

Verse 41 describes a more sustained attack. “He will also enter the Beautiful Land, and many countries will fall.” The term ‘beautiful land’ occurred once before and was interpreted as referring to the Jewish people. In verse 16 the ‘King of the North stayed in the Beautiful Land with destruction in his hand’, and this was interpreted as the Nazi Holocaust against the Jews. Verse 41 simply talks about entering the Beautiful Land and does not mention destruction. Thus, this could be interpreted either as Jewish rational thought being overwhelmed by subjective feelings of fundamentalism, orthodoxy, nationalism, and/or political correctness, or as the Jewish people being attacked by anti-Semitic feelings of fundamentalism, orthodoxy, nationalism and/or political correctness. This could also be referring to some combination of these two, because when one is threatened in some emotional manner, then it is easy to respond in a similar emotional manner. The primary point appears to be that this institutionally backed emotional onslaught will rise to the level of questioning Jewish concepts of being a chosen people. It is reasonable to conclude that this could occur, because postmodern thought already regards Jewish identity as a major affront to the doctrine of universal tolerance. (Note from 2022: The Israeli response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine has been rather ambiguous, largely because of the number of Russian Jews in Israel as well as the Israeli desire not to antagonize the Russians who control Syria. One byproduct of this ambiguous Israeli response is to weaken emotional respect for the Jewish narrative that the Jewish are a unique people who experienced a unique Jewish Holocaust.)

Fall is the familiar word that means ‘to stumble, stagger, totter’, and this is the final time that this word is used in the book of Daniel. It has been interpreted as stumbling from some sort of vision or path. The word ‘countries’ is not in the original Hebrew, which simply says that ‘many will stumble’. The context is that the subjective king of the North is using many organizations and corporations to support an emotional onslaught that will overwhelm rational thought. The phrase ‘many will stumble’ implies that many supposedly rational individuals and groups will succumb to this emotional pressure. Going further, verse 40 said that this emotional assault would be supported by chariots, horsemen and many ships, implying that organizations, corporations, and institutions that are expressions of rational thought will succumb to emotional manipulation and become sources of emotional manipulation.

For instance, one saw both of these effects happening in the United States under Donald Trump. At the individual level, many members of his staff who turned out later to be both rational and intelligent acted like mindless toadies when working for Trump. At the institutional level, Trump succeeded in overturning rational thought in many agencies by appointing leaders who participated in his emotional manipulation. This is described in an article in the Atlantic entitled ‘The president is Winning His War on American Institutions’. Quoting from the opening paragraphs, “When Donald Trump came into office, there was a sense that he would be outmatched by the vast government he had just inherited. The new president was impetuous, bottomlessly ignorant, almost chemically inattentive, while the bureaucrats were seasoned, shrewd, protective of themselves and their institutions. They knew where the levers of power lay and how to use them or prevent the president from doing so. Trump’s White House was chaotic and vicious, unlike anything in American history, but it didn’t really matter as long as ‘the adults’ were there to wait out the president’s impulses and deflect his worst ideas and discreetly pocket destructive orders lying around on his desk. After three years, the adults have all left the room—saying just about nothing on their way out to alert the country to the peril—while Trump is still there.”

I mention Trump not because he is the only example, but rather because he is one of the few current examples that one can discuss and analyze. For instance, one can see similar traits in the behavior of Xi Jinping of China. The Chinese methods that are being used to shut down internal dissent are highly emotional and largely devoid of rational thought. For instance, one article describes making people disappear, physically dragging people away when they attempt to talk to the media, putting families under house arrest, threatening to kill family members, taking down social media posts, placing people in psychiatric institutions, barging into houses during live interviews, and forbidding people from leaving the country. As for the institutional backing, it appears that all private companies in China are subject to government control. Quoting from the Guardian, “In the words of one analyst. ‘Chinese domestic laws and administrative guidelines, as well as unspoken regulations and internal party committees, make it quite difficult to distinguish between what is private and what is state-owned.’”

Summarizing, my best guess is that we are not yet in verse 41, but one can definitely see this kind of behavior spreading through current society.

Verse 41 adds that several countries will not be affected by this emotional onslaught. “But these will be rescued out of his hand: Edom, Moab, and the foremost of the sons of Ammon.” The symbolism of the name Edom is explained in Genesis 25:30. “And Esau said to Jacob, ‘Please let me have a swallow of that red stuff there, for I am famished.’ Therefore his name was called Edom.” In Hebrew, the ‘red stuff’ is ‘adom adom’. Looking at this more generally, God is described in the Old Testament as ‘the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob’. This corresponds to what mental symmetry calls the three stages of personal transformation. Abraham represents the first stage of leaving MMNs of childish identity, Isaac represents the second stage of following Teacher thought, while Jacob represents the final stage of returning back to Mercy experiences. Esau was the brother of Jacob who preferred food over birthright, and verses 31-34 of Genesis 25 describe Esau giving his birthright to Jacob for ‘a swallow of that red stuff’. Food represents intellectual food. This leads to the conclusion that Edom represents the path of staying within abstract theory rather than returning to real life through the application of theory. Using modern language, Edom represents pure research. One can see that pure research would not be affected by emotional onslaughts, because it is guided purely by Teacher emotions.

Moab means ‘from her mother’s father’, and Genesis 19:30-38 describes Lot’s two daughters getting pregnant by their father Lot after the destruction of Sodom. Looking at this symbolically, this would refer to mental networks of female thought that descend from male technical thought. This relates to the idea of an implicit spouse. One can see this illustrated in many technological companies. Technology places a strong emphasis upon the male thinking of technical thought. But a large company will naturally develop an internal culture, a set of mental networks picked up nonverbally by working at the company that summarize how one is supposed to think and behave. This nonverbal culture is an example of an implicit spouse. Moab appears to represent large technical organizations that have developed a strong corporate culture. This combination of male and female thought may be incestuous but it is also quite stable, and would be resistant to the emotional onslaught described in verse 41.

Ammon is the other incestuous son of Lot mentioned in Genesis 19:38. The name comes from a word that means ‘tribal’ and conveys the sense of ‘inbred’. The name of the original son was ben Ammi, which means ‘son of my people’ and the term Ammon refers to the descendents of ben-Ammi. Verse 41 does not say that all of Ammon will survive, but rather only the ‘foremost of the sons’. Looking at this cognitively, this may refer to an implicit spouse functioning the other way. The primary focus here is upon people and tribes, which would refer to the mental networks of some group. However, this cultural group is being supported by a ‘son’ of technical thought, and it is the ‘foremost of the sons’ that is surviving. This would describe some sort of ingrown culture that supports itself through some system of male technical thought. In this case, explicit mental networks of culture have developed an implicit spouse of male technical thought.

For instance, one can see this combination in fundamentalist Baptist churches or also in the Jehovah’s Witnesses. In both cases, an ingrown religious group is supporting itself through extensive technical study. One normally equates technical thought with science, but it is possible to start with some foundation of absolute truth and use technical thought to build upon this foundation. The typical fundamentalist Baptist church group has many Bible conferences in which the Bible is studied and experts within the church preach at one another. One can see a similar sort of incestuous technical study in the Jehovah’s Witnesses. In both cases, the underlying assumption is that anything taught by outsiders is inherently invalid—not merely incorrect but fundamentally false at the level of religious ‘truth’. My goal here is not to discuss the validity of the doctrines of such groups, but rather to point out that this kind of societal structure is stable and would be resistant to emotional onslaught.

Verse 41 says that ‘These will be rescued out of his hand’. The word rescue actually means ‘to slip away’ and is used one other time in Daniel in 12:1. The word hand represents technical thought because hands are used to perform detailed manipulation. This is significant because subjective thought tends to be driven in a vague manner by mental networks, while technical manipulation is limited to objective scientific thought. In verse 41, subjective thought has acquired the ability to do detailed manipulation. This is consistent with the earlier suggestion that mental networks are using organizations, institutions, and corporations to further their cause. In other words, the emotional manipulation is coming in the form of regulations, policies, legislation, and lawsuits. One can see why only ‘Edom, Moab, and the foremost of the sons of Ammon’ would be able to resist such a coordinated onslaught.

Holiness Invades the Secular Realm 11:42-43

Verse 42 describes the next step. “Then he will reach out with his hand against other countries, and the land of Egypt will not escape.” Reach out means ‘to send’, ‘and reaching out with his hand’ implies a further application of the technical manipulation of regulations and policies. ‘Other’ is not in the original Hebrew and countries is the word ‘earth, land’, which is being interpreted as some region of rational thought. This means that organized mental networks will attempt to extend their institutional control over more regions of rational thought. Saying this more clearly, postmodern concepts of safe spaces masquerading as universal tolerance will become entrenched as official policy in more and more regions of rational thought. It is possible to understand what this entails by extrapolating from what is already happening today.

Egypt was previously mentioned in verse 8, where the gold and silver of the subjective king of the North was being carried captive to Egypt. This was interpreted as secular society appropriating the various symbols of Christianity during the late Victorian era. In verse 42, the opposite is happening because the emotional manipulation of the king of the North is extending to the secular realm of Egypt. Escape is used once in Daniel and means ‘an escape’. Looking at this cognitively, secular society originally emerged as a way of escaping the mental networks of subjective and religious thought. In verse 8, secular society started using the symbols and rituals of religion and culture, but religion and culture were the servants of secular power. In verse 42, secular society will be expected to acknowledge the ‘weight’ of the new foreign god of safe spaces. In verse 39, lip service was being given to this foreign god, making it possible to make money by feigning allegiance and honor. In verse 42, this lip service is being replaced by actual honor enforced by regulations and policies. Applying this to current history, one can see this starting to happen in various areas of society.

Verse 43 specifically mentions gold and silver. “But he will rule over the hidden treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt.” Rule means ‘to rule, have dominion, reign’ and was previously used in verse 39 to describe postmodern thought acquiring institutional and government power. Hidden treasures is used once in the Bible and means ‘hidden stores’. These are referred to as ‘gold and silver’. Looking at this cognitively, many organizations and religions build their emotional attraction upon secret knowledge, special principles that are only revealed to insiders. In Roman times, this described the typical mystery religion. Verse 43 seems to be saying that the new regime will gain legislative power over this hidden knowledge.

This may correspond to some sort of ‘thought police’, in which the government attempts to control how people think and behave in private in order to ensure that the proper emotional weight is given to the official gods. For instance, a PBS article warned back in 2008 that it was becoming possible to determine how people think by using computers to analyze social media. The article begins by saying that “The National Security Agency (NSA) is developing a tool that George Orwell’s Thought Police might have found useful: an artificial intelligence system designed to gain insight into what people are thinking… As more and more data is collected—through phone calls, credit card receipts, social networks like Facebook and MySpace, GPS tracks, cell phone geolocation, Internet searches, Amazon book purchases, even E-Z Pass toll records—it may one day be possible to know not just where people are and what they are doing, but what and how they think.” The situation today in 2021 is far worse, because much more is done by the average person on the Internet, computers are far more capable of analyzing reams of meta-data to uncover underlying trends, and ubiquitous surveillance by governments upon their citizens has become the norm. If one wishes to see where the world is heading tomorrow, one merely has to observe where China is today.

Verse 43 adds that this control will extend ‘over all the precious things of Egypt’. Precious means ‘to desire, take pleasure in’. This word was used in female form in verse 37, which was interpreted as postmodern female thought no longer finding emotional pleasure in femininity. Thus, what is being described is not treasure but rather enjoyment, and ‘the precious things of Egypt’ would refer to secular enjoyment. A major aspect of this is entertainment, and the fundamental assumption of entertainment is that one can have fun without having to worry about offending some culture or religion. Verse 43 seems to be saying that this idea of fun will come to an end, because one will have to express fun and entertainment in ways that do not offend the cultural or religious sensibilities of some officially protected group.

Verse 43 finishes by saying that ‘Libyans and Ethiopians will follow at his footsteps.’ The word Libya comes from a word that means ‘to thirst’. Ethiopia is literally a ‘descendent of Cush’. The name Cush means ‘black’, and Ethiopians were and are black-skinned. Before we look these two terms, I need to address an obvious question. Is there any inherent relationship between black skin and a lack of understanding? Of course not! However, if one holds to a materialistic mindset that treats physical reality as fundamental, then this will lead to the conclusion that the way that a person thinks is heavily determined by the physical body of that person. Mental symmetry, in contrast, treats the structure of the mind as fundamental, and suggests that the goal is to transform the mind to the extent that it also affects the physical body. I am certain that those who hold to materialism would strongly deny that they are racist. But if only physical reality exists, then it becomes difficult to provide any convincing reason why people should not be defined by their physical appearance.

There is also the matter of cognitively natural symbolism. For instance, light will naturally be associated with understanding and dark with the absence of understanding, as illustrated by the sentence ‘The situation was dark until I suddenly saw the light’. Cognitively natural symbolism can only be suppressed through continual effort, because it is being suggested by the structure of the mind itself. Pretending that cognitively natural symbolism does not exist will simply drive it subconscious where it will continue to function apart from conscious control. For instance, ‘dark’ or ‘black’ will be mentally associated with an absence of Teacher understanding whether this interpretation is politically correct or not. Something that is cognitively natural has to be addressed at the level of cognitive naturalness. Thus, I suggest that it is possible to override cognitively natural symbolism through the use of a cognitively natural theory—such as mental symmetry. Saying this more simply, mental symmetry suggests that the goal is to construct a mind that is so full of light that one no longer sees skin color.

Returning to verse 43, footstep comes from a word that means ‘to step, march’. It is used two other times in the Bible in the phrase ‘the steps of a man’. I have suggested that hands represent technical thought. In a similar vein, I suggest that feet represent the movement of personal identity. For instance, ‘the steps of a man’ would describe following a path of personal growth and maturity. Verse 43 says ‘Libyans and Ethiopians at his footsteps’ (‘will follow’ is implied). ‘Libyan’ means ‘to thirst’, which implies a desire for the ‘water’ of Mercy experiences. Ethiopian means ‘black’, which implies an absence of Teacher understanding. Verse 41 described three groups that would the able to resist the pull of the new regime. Verse 43 describes two groups that will not be able to resist the pull but rather will find themselves naturally following in the footsteps of the system. A similar situation happened in Nazi Germany. Only some of the Germans were Nazis, but the regime managed to pull along the average population in its footsteps. Similarly, I suggest that the consumer who hungers after new experiences and the uneducated individual who lacks Teacher understanding will naturally find themselves pulled along by the regime of verse 43.

The Threat of a New Paradigm 11:44

In verse 44 something happens. “But rumors from the East and from the North will terrify him, and he will go out with great wrath to eliminate and devote many to destruction.” Rumor is derived from the verb that means ‘to hear’. And hearing means that one is dealing with the Teacher realm of words. Note the contrast with the end of verse 43. We just saw that those who lack Teacher understanding and focus upon Mercy experiences will naturally follow the new regime. In verse 44 something is entering from the neglected realm of Teacher thought. This ‘hearing’ is coming ‘from the East and from the North’. The North represents the subjective realm of mental networks, because the word north comes from a verb that means ‘to hide, treasure up’. The word east literally means ‘place of sunrise’, and the sun is interpreted in other essays as a general theory that lights up the landscape of thought and activity. Sunrise indicates that society is on the verge of experiencing a new general paradigm.

Looking at this more generally, the previous verses have been describing the triumph of postmodern thought. Western society was illuminated by the sun of the Enlightenment. Postmodern thought questions this ‘sun’, leading to the sunset of Western society. Instead of being lit by the sun of modern thought, we are now within the twilight and darkness of postmodern thought. Verse 44 describes the sunset of post-modern thought turning into sunrise of pre-new-civilization. The Enlightenment emphasized the objective thinking of the king of the South. This new civilization is coming from the North, which means that it is based in mental networks.

This corresponds with what I refer to in other essays as ‘the theoretical return of Jesus’, as described in passages including Matthew 24:27, 1 Thessalonians 4, 1 John 3:1-3, and 2 Corinthians 2:14. This replaces what evangelicals refer to as ‘the rapture’. That is because examining the passages on ‘the rapture’ more closely leads to the conclusion that this will not be a personal, physical return of Jesus followed by Christians disappearing and going physically to heaven, but rather the unveiling of a general Teacher theory of God and incarnation. This is followed by what I refer to as spiritual technology. My hypothesis is that the spiritual realm interacts with the mind through mental networks. Technology is currently objective. However, the previous verses have described one area after another of the objective realm being taken over by subjective mental networks. The underlying assumption is that these mental networks are not subject to any rules of morality. Spiritual technology would involve spiritual power empowering these mental networks in some manner. Saying this bluntly, those who pursue various lifestyles would suddenly discover that their personal choices have spiritual implications. Would this be good or bad? I suggest that it would depend upon whether or not it is possible to fully live within one’s core mental networks.

One can tell that what is happening has a major impact because the words of verse 44 are very strong. The vocabulary of chapter 11 has generally been understated. That is not the case in verse 44. The word terrify means ‘to disturb, terrify’ and is in the intensive (pi’el) form, which implies an intense version of being terrified. Looking at this cognitively, spiritual technology would cause ‘safe spaces’ to be filled with spiritual monsters that have the power to affect the real world.

Going further, the word wrath means ‘heat, rage’, which implies an uncontrolled expression of mental networks. This wrath is described as great, which suggests that Mercy feelings of rage are being expanded through Teacher generality. Eliminate means to ‘annihilate, exterminate’. And devote to destruction means ‘to make accursed, consecrate, utterly destroy’. This word is used in the Old Testament when talking about killing all of the inhabitants of some city. This word is accompanied by the adjective many, which raises the response from annihilation to genocide.

In other words, there is no hint of ‘universal tolerance’. Instead, there is a gut response that this new thing needs to be utterly destroyed and eliminated. Triggering such a gut-level repulsion would require a total contradiction at the level of core mental networks. The primary assumption of postmodern thought is that all Teacher theories and Perceiver facts are merely ideology and propaganda being imposed upon the population by those who are in power. Related to this is the underlying assumption that only the material world exists. A theoretical return of Jesus would reveal a general Teacher theory that has power over mental networks of culture and identity, while the experience of spiritual power would indicate that there is more to reality than physical existence. This would threaten postmodern thought at an existential level, leading to a gut response of annihilate or be annihilated.

(Note from 2022: It may be that the Russian invasion of Ukraine describes the start of this because there is a strong feeling among many Westerners that the future of Western tolerance depends upon successfully destroying the Russian mentality of cultural superiority. People are sensing this at the core of their being. I think that the theoretical return of Jesus will go significantly further, but this is the first time that I have seen Western tolerance being faced with a legitimate, existential threat.)

The Fixation and Downfall of Postmodern Thought 11:45

Verse 45 is strange. On the one hand, it looks as if the king of the North has succeeded. But on the other hand, it describes the end of the king of the North. “And he will pitch the tents of his royal pavilion between the seas and the beautiful Holy Mountain; yet he will come to his end, and no one will help him.” The word pitch actually means ‘to plant’, and it is translated as ‘plant’ 56 out of the 58 times that it is used in the Old Testament. (The KJV always uses ‘plant’ while the NASB translates one occurrence as ‘establish’.) Tent means ‘a tent’. Royal pavilion is used once in the Bible and means ‘a pavilion or palace-tent’. Putting this together, the mind uses mental networks to represent living beings. Thus, planting implies approaching the subject from the viewpoint of living beings. A palace-tent suggests a combination of great personal status in Mercy thought combined with impermanence.

Before we attempt to decipher what this means, we will look at where this palace-tent is being planted. It is between two locations. The first location is seas, which is in the plural and without a ‘the’. This does not make sense literally, because there is only one sea beside Israel, which is the Mediterranean Sea. However, water represents Mercy experiences, therefore ‘seas’ would represent many realms of Mercy experiences that lack the internal coherence of solid ground. This would refer to the various MMNs of culture, experience, and lifestyle that drive normal life. The plural implies that there are many seas of experience, consistent with the idea of many lifestyles and cultures, each living within the ‘sea’ of some ‘safe space’.

The second location is ‘the beautiful holy mountain’. Beauty means ‘beautiful, glorious’ and was used in this chapter when referring to ‘the beautiful land’. However, verse 45 refers to a beautiful mountain rather than a beautiful land. A mountain is a high point from which one can gain an overview of the surrounding region. This describes a pragmatic form of general theory. This beautiful mountain is described as holy, which means ‘apartness, sacredness’. This word has been used three times in chapter 11, each time in the phrase ‘holy covenant’. This indicates that a new form of holiness has emerged. A ‘holy covenant’ bases holiness in some agreement or covenant, and one of the core concepts of both Judaism and Christianity is that God has made an agreement with humanity which involves treating certain objects, experiences, and books as separate and sacred. This is a Mercy definition of holiness, because religious MMNs are being treated as different than secular mental networks. For instance, Judaism historically regarded the temple and the temple sacrifices as holy, leading to MMNs of holy ritual and location. A mountain is a form of Teacher theory. Thus, a holy mountain suggests a Teacher definition of holiness, which regards something as holy because it is an illustration of Teacher order. This relates strongly to Platonic forms. Platonic forms are more perfect than anything in reality, but some real items are more like Platonic forms than others. Something in reality that is close to the perfection of a Platonic form would express a Teacher definition of holiness. This interpretation is consistent with the word ‘beauty’, because beauty is an expression of Teacher emotion. Something that is beautiful contains many elements of Teacher order-within-complexity, such as symmetry, smoothness, curves, grace, elegance, and structure. Glory describes the external expression of internal character. Thus, ‘beautiful, glorious’ would refer to something real that is an expression of Teacher order-within-complexity, consistent with the idea of being like a Platonic form.

This interpretation of ‘beautiful, holy, mountain’ also provides a justification for interpreting ‘the beautiful land’ as a reference to Judaism. Christianity focuses upon beliefs and doctrines within Perceiver thought and the transformative effects that these Perceiver beliefs can have upon personal identity in Mercy thought. Judaism, in contrast, focuses upon the doing of Server actions and declares that these actions come from God in Teacher thought. This is reflected in the Hebrew word for divine law, halacha, which means ‘to go or to walk’. Jewish Server actions have stability because they were first written down in the Torah several thousand years ago. A system of Server actions that is summarized by Teacher words can be described as beautiful. But if the Teacher order that is inherent in these Server actions is not fully understood, then one will get at best a ‘beautiful land’ and not a ‘beautiful mountain’. The transition from beautiful land to beautiful mountain happens when Teacher thought finally grasps the underlying order that lies behind the Server actions of the Torah. For instance, this essay has shown that Daniel 11 contains extensive Teacher order. Daniel 11 has been described previously as a fulfillment of prophecy—a beautiful land. But this essay goes beyond that to describe Daniel 11 as a beautiful mountain. Looking at this more generally, the thesis of this essay is that Judaism before the time of Christ was supposed to make the transition from beautiful land to beautiful mountain, but it did not. Mental symmetry attempts to interpret Christian theology as a beautiful mountain.

It may seem that I am reading too much into this verse, but something dramatic must have occurred between verses 44 and 45 because the motivation is totally different. (And what the beginning of chapter 12 describes can only be interpreted as supernatural.) The goal in verse 44 was total annihilation to the level of genocide. What was being devoted to utter destruction in verse 44 has turned into the central source of personal status in verse 45. Instead of annihilating cities, a palace-tent is being planted. This is bizarre, because one does not normally treat something as the epitome of evil today and then shift to treating this same thing as an angel from heaven tomorrow.

(Note from 2022: Verse 45 also describes the Western response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Russian behavior utterly and openly violates Western concepts of universal tolerance. The Western response has been to camp morally between the ‘seas’ of various Western cultures and the ‘mountain’ of a pragmatic understanding of Western civility. This crisis has occurred primarily at the ‘Jewish’ level of behavior, driven by the outrageous actions of the invading Russians. This Western response is a ‘tent’ that is separate from the permanent institutions of Western society but it is also a ‘royal pavilion’ because it involves core concepts of Western society. However, this response is having the long-term impact of questioning Western concepts of universal tolerance because Western society is preserving its universal tolerance by using military weapons in a very intolerant manner upon Russia. Again, I think that this is only the starting point, but the fact that society is now heading in this direction suggests that the appointed time has now become fulfilled.)

I suggest that the emergence of spiritual technology would create such a transition at a larger level. This can be explained with the help of an illustration. Suppose that I were playing some online computer game, in which I was pretending to be some hero performing quests in a magical kingdom. This is known as a massively multiplayer online role-playing game, and online computer gaming had a global revenue of $38.4 billion in 2020. Playing such games can be addictive. For instance, it is exciting to be a level 64 dark elf with a crystal bow, and the many hours of playing required to reach such a level will create strong mental networks, which can lead to addictive behavior. Now suppose that these mental networks became empowered by actual spiritual powers, and that the monsters in the game actually felt like monsters in the real world. That would be intoxicating. (Note from 2022: In a similar vein, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has replaced the social game of Western tolerance with the real world of Russian physical brutality. Here too, the imaginary monsters have become real.)

But it would also reveal an underlying problem, which can also be explained by looking at the example of a computer game. A computer is actually an expression of hyper-precise Teacher order and structure, and a computer program is a sequence of precisely defined Teacher words, which the CPU treats as instructions to carry out. In a computer game, these instructions are being used to create the illusion of some physical world with people and objects. (This was mentioned earlier when looking at the development of the personal computer in the 1970s. However, the illusion of reality that can be created on a computer today is far more realistic and far more immersive than the crude, monochrome line drawings portrayed by the first personal computers.) On the one hand, the person who plays a computer game is approaching the game at this Mercy level of objects, people, personal status, events, and quests. But on the other hand, constructing this simulation of Mercy experiences requires extensive Teacher order-within-complexity. Now suppose that one is playing an online game in which the primary goal is to kill people and destroy objects. Playing this game will form MMNs of destruction and annihilation, but running this game on the computer is actually an expression of extreme TMNs of order and structure. The player of such a game assumes that there is no connection between the Teacher structure required to run the game and the Mercy tribalism of death-and-destruction that emerges from playing the game. Spiritual technology would give real power to the Mercy mental networks driving the behavior within the program, causing them to conflict with the mental networks required to run the program. (Note from 2022: in a similar vein, the repeated ineptitude of the Russian military has made it clear that Russian society with its MMNs of destruction and annihilation lacks the Teacher order-within-complexity that is required to win a modern war.)

A similar statement can be made about using legislation and organization to provide ‘safe spaces’ for lifestyles and cultures. On the one hand, the lifestyles and cultures themselves are expressions of MMNs that one is forbidden to explain rationally or analyze morally. On the other hand, this regulation of political correctness is coming from institutions and organizations that possess extensive Teacher order-within-complexity. As with a violent computer game, MMNs that abhor Teacher order-within-complexity are being supported by a structure that requires Teacher order-within-complexity.

Using philosophical language, this aspect of spiritual technology could be interpreted as a realization of Kant’s categorical imperative. One formulation of the categorical imperative is to “Act as if the maxims of your action were to become through your will a universal law of nature.” One can define universal law either as a law that applies universally or else as a law that follows me wherever I go. As far as Teacher thought within my mind is concerned, both of these laws are equally universal. That is because Teacher thought within my mind will regard something as universal as long as Perceiver thought within my mind is unaware of any contradictions. Thus, spiritually empowering my mental networks of personal behavior would turn these mental networks into universal laws in the sense that they would apply to me universally wherever I went.

The inherent ambivalence between personal MMNs and universal TMNs can be seen symbolically in verse 45. If the personal behavior really were an expression of Teacher order-with-complexity, then a home would be constructed at the top of the holy and beautiful mountain. But the structure lies between the holy mountain of Teacher structure and the seas of raw Mercy experience. Thus, the participant wants to experience the best of both worlds, which means behaving in a manner that is lawless while being protected by the rule of law. Kant referred to this juxtaposition as radical evil. Similarly, if the person really wanted to live within this alternate reality, then a home would be constructed and not just a tent. The temporary structure of a tent indicates that a person wants to live temporarily within the alternate reality while still experiencing the benefits of modern civilization.

For instance, the person pretending to be a level 64 dark elf would not really like to live within an elvish kingdom, but rather wants to experience the fun of escaping to an elfish kingdom while still living within the comforts of modern society. Hence, a tent. Going further, if that person truly understood that the alternate Mercy reality was an expression of rational Teacher understanding, then this tent would be constructed and not planted. However, a tent is being planted, which means approaching the situation from the subjective viewpoint of Mercy mental networks and ignoring that these mental networks were originally constructed by objective technical thought. Finally, if the person really wanted to live within this alternate reality, then the focus would be upon building a home for personal identity. Instead, the goal is to plant a palace-tent—a temporary symbol of personal status.

Part of the pleasure of being a level 64 dark elf with a crystal bow is that one can feel important when meeting a level 23 elf who only has a normal oaken bow. Similarly, one of the primary goals of most lifestyles that require safe spaces is to receive approval from society. The reason for this is quite simple. If one behaves in a manner that leads naturally to pleasant results, then one does not need approval from people, because the behavior generates its own rewards. However, if one pursues a lifestyle that is inherently unsuccessful, then this built-in failure needs to be propped up emotionally by approval from people.

Verse 45 finishes by describing the end of the king of the North. “Yet he will come to his end, and no one will help him.” The word end is the same word that was used in verse 40 to describe ‘at the end time’. In verse 45, the king of the North is coming ‘as far as, even to’ his own end. In verse 44, the king of the North set out to annihilate many and devote them to permanent destruction. In verse 45 he is coming to his own end. ‘No one’ gives the impression that people are choosing not to help the king of the North. But the Hebrew word is the generic ‘nothing, nought’ which indicates that something does not exist. Thus, a more accurate translation would be that ‘help for him does not exist’.

(Note from 2022: Western society is attempting to maintain the juxtaposition of defending Western values of civilized behavior against Russian aggression while simultaneously championing marginalized lifestyles in the name of universal tolerance. But what is motivating Russia? Russia is trying to champion its marginalized lifestyle of medieval brutality in the name of universal Slavic tolerance. Thus, two different versions of the same kind of mentality are locked in a life-and-death struggle. Western society is trying to follow a cognitive version of defending specific MMNs of lifestyle in the name of a Teacher overgeneralization of universal tolerance in a manner that requires the mental destruction of any opposing forces. Russia is trying to follow a physical version of of defending specific MMNs of lifestyle in the name of a Teacher overgeneralization of Russian cultural unity in a manner that requires the physical destruction of any opposing forces. Russia views the Western response as an existential threat to its physical hegemony. The West views the Russian response as an existential threat to its psychological hegemony. Help does not exist to solve such a crisis. I am NOT suggesting some sort of moral equivalence between the West and Russia. On the contrary, the distinction between good and evil is especially apparent in this conflict. However, it appears that the King of the North—the mindset of protecting hidden subjective treasures of culture and religion—is being faced with irreconcilable contradictions.)

Looking now at a future spiritual society, people are being caught metaphorically between an irresistible force and an immovable object. The irresistible force comes from the spiritual enabling. Imagine living some lifestyle, experiencing societal oppression, or living within alternate reality and suddenly having that behavior be spiritually empowered. For instance, one is no longer a level 64 dark elf playing computer games and eating junk food in a basement room of the parent’s house. Instead, one is a real level 64 dark elf manipulating real spiritual power. And one is not just being driven emotionally by mental networks to live within this alternate reality, but instead one is also being driven by spirits to express these mental networks of alternate reality. What would happen if the motivated behavior were inconsistent with the structure required to maintain this behavior? For instance, a dark elf uses magic spells to override the laws of nature, while a computer will only be able to simulate being a dark elf if one cannot use magic spells to override the laws of nature. There is no solution for such a contradiction. This is not a question of people choosing not to help, but rather of help not existing.

And that would be a crushing realization for postmodern thought, because the fundamental premise of postmodern thought is that if I am feeling bad, then that is because some powerful group is making me feel bad. Therefore, the government and other organizations need to step in and stop others from making me feel bad.

The coming of ‘the Son of Man’ in Matthew 24 is typically interpreted as a single event but there are actually five distinct elements. First, there are rumors of the return of Christ, described in 24:23-26. Second, there is a flash of lightning in verse 27 that starts in the East and extends until the West. Third, verse 29 talks about existing luminaries being shaken and falling from the sky. Fourth, in verse 30 the sign of the Son of Man appears in the sky and is followed by great mourning. Finally, the elect are gathered together by angels in verse 31. The first stage of rumors would correspond to Daniel 11:44, in which a rumor causes the king of the North to set out on a path of annihilation. The flash of lightning in verse 27 would lead to the realization that what is happening should not be annihilated but rather expropriated; this is not heresy to be eliminated but rather a power to be used. The inappropriate use of this power in verse 45 would lead to the shaking and falling mentioned in verse 30 of Matthew 24. The mourning is implied by the fatal fall at the end of verse 45. Finally, the coming of angels for the elect is described at the beginning of Daniel 12. (Note from 2022: The Russian invasion of Ukraine seems to fit the final verses of Daniel 11. However, Daniel 12 is clearly describing something supernatural that goes beyond the current situation. One possibility is that if the current conflict grows to include nuclear weapons, then only angelic intervention will preserve civilization. )

A Great Narrowness and Rescue 12:1

Chapter 12 changes the perspective and looks at something else that is happening ‘at that time’. Verse 1 begins: “Now at that time Michael, the great prince who stands guard over the sons of your people, will arise. Michael means ‘Who is like God’. Michael was mentioned at the end of chapter 10 when the angel delivered the message of Daniel 11 to Daniel. In 10:21, Michael was described as ‘your prince’. In 12:1, Michael is referred to as ‘the great prince’. Prince means ‘chieftain, chief, ruler’. Thus, chapter 11 can be viewed as a process by which the ruler of Daniel becomes the ruler of everyone. Daniel means ‘God is my judge’. We interpreted Daniel 11 as starting with the Enlightenment, and the core premise of the Enlightenment was that one needs to compare ideas with the concept of a God of order and structure within Teacher thought. Going further, one needs to recognize that ‘God is my judge’ when thinking about the structure of the universe. However, during the Enlightenment, this mindset was only practiced by a few people who also applied it in a limited manner. Chapter 11 has just ended with a major unveiling during which people have started to experience what it means for mental networks to be compared with a concept of God and judged by God. The end result is that ‘your prince’ turns into ‘the great prince’.

This may seem like a trivial distinction, but a similar transition happened in Genesis 17:15 where God changed the name of Abraham’s wife from Sarai, which means ‘my princess’, to Sarah, which means ‘princess’. ‘My Princess’ describes a Platonic form of female thought based in personal MMNs, whereas ‘Princess’ describes the same Platonic form based in the TMN of a concept of God.

The angel at the end of chapter 10 complained that no one really stood with him except for Michael. The beginning of chapter 12 describes Michael as standing over ‘the sons of your people’. And people refers to ‘a people as a congregated unit’. This tells us that what started as a verbal understanding of the nature of God in Teacher thought has now expanded to become a group of people with a culture within Mercy thought. However, the reference to the ‘sons’ indicates that what is being protected is not the culture itself but rather the technical thinking of the culture. This is quite different than organizationally enforced postmodernism, which uses technical thought to preserve mental networks of culture that avoid technical thought.

Something similar happened with normal technology during the consumer revolution that began in the late 19th century. This is when the gadgets of science emerged from the factories and entered the personal realm of home life. What preserves the consumer culture is the technical thinking that is required to design, develop, and produce a continual stream of new-and-improved gadgets. Without this technical thought, the consumer revolution would collapse. I suggest that chapter 12 is describing something similar happening with spiritual technology. What began as Platonic forms of perfection held by a few individuals has now turned into an entire culture. And I suggest that technical thought will provide the mental structure that is required to harness spiritual power in an intelligent manner. I cannot provide any hard evidence for this final statement, but my best guess is that the spiritual realm has no inherent content. Therefore, content must explicitly be added to spiritual interaction through the use of technical thought. This is like electricity, which has to be channeled through complex circuits in order to produce useful effects. Electricity without circuits is personally experienced as some form of electric shock. Similarly, spirituality without content can only exhibit itself as some version of the psychic shock of ‘being slain in the spirit’.

Verse 1 continues, “And there will be a time of distress such as never occurred since there was a nation until that time.” The word distress is the feminine version of a word that means ‘narrow, tight’. This is the equivalent of the Greek word translated tribulation, which is ‘used of a narrow place that hems someone in; tribulation, especially internal pressure that causes someone to feel confined.’ This is significant because Matthew 24:21 says “For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever will again.” Thus, both Matthew 24 and Daniel 12 refer to a time of great squeezing and narrowness. The Greek word thlipsis refers primarily to feeling confined. Similarly, the use of a feminine version of the Hebrew word ‘distress’ also implies a focus upon the mental networks of female thought, suggesting that people will feel squeezed.

Daniel 12 says that this feeling of narrowness will be unsurpassed ‘since there was a nation’. The word nation is goi, which means ‘nation, people’ and is usually used to refer to Gentiles nations. (Daniel’s people were referred to in verse 1 as an am, and not a goi.) Similarly, the word world in Matthew 24:21 is cosmos, which means ‘an ordered system’ and refers to ‘worldly affairs; the inhabitants of the world’. More precisely, 1 John 2:15-17 defines the cosmos as the structured system that comes from living within physical bodies within the physical world. In both cases, what is being challenged is not physical reality itself but rather the human society that results from living within the material world. Saying this more generally, the theoretical return of Jesus will fundamentally challenge societal structure, but it will not overturn physical reality. Passages such as 2 Peter 3 indicate that a challenging of physical reality will happen some time in the future.

Verse 45 described postmodern thought coming to an end. Verse 1 describes another group of people being rescued. “And at that time your people, everyone who is found written in the book, will be rescued.” ‘At that time’ is the same phrase that was used at the beginning of verse 1. Thus, the rescuing will happen along with the narrowness. The word rescue actually means ‘to slip away’. It was used one other time in Daniel in 11:41 to refer to the three countries that would escape the whirlwind of emotional onslaught. That was interpreted as groups being driven sufficiently by an internal combination of mental networks and technical thought to be unaffected by any external emotional pressure. Here too, a group is managed to slip away from the narrowness because it is driven by a different set of mental networks backed up by technical thought.

The word people is am, which was used earlier in the verse to refer to Daniel’s people. However, there is a difference between these two references, which implies a cognitive progression. At the beginning of the verse, Michael was standing watch over the ‘sons of your people’, while at the end of verse ‘your people’ are slipping away. The ‘sons of your people’ would refer to the male technical thought associated with this people, whereas ‘your people’ would refer directly to the mental networks of this culture. However, this is not a normal culture based in MMNs of normal experience. Instead, ‘everyone who is found written in the book’ is slipping away.

Found is in the passive (nifal), which means that people are not writing themselves in the book. This is significant because one of the characteristics of postmodernism is that cultures and lifestyles are lifting themselves up and writing their own personal preferences into the books of regulation and legislation. Saying this another way, the direction of postmodernism is from personal Mercy to written Teacher. In contrast, being ‘found in a book’ starts with written Teacher and moves to personal Mercy. The word book is the normal word for ‘book’ and will also be used in verse 4 where Daniel is told to ‘seal up the book’. The parallel passage in Revelation 10-11 describes the nature of this book, because the entire chapter of Revelation 10 tells the story of an angel giving a small book to a human to read and digest. That passage is analyzed in detail in another essay and, as far as I can tell, mental symmetry is the only candidate that satisfies the description given in Revelation 10-11. Going further, the interpretation of Daniel 11-12 given in this essay is only possible because of the theory of mental symmetry. Going further, mental symmetry is capable of explaining both the spiritual and the angelic realms, and I am not aware of any other rational theory which even claims to do so.

I should also add that there is a huge difference between writing a book and being written in a book. Looking at this generally, I have learned that one of the prerequisites for understanding the mind is that one must always apply what one understands. Thus, attempting to write a book on the mind must always be accompanied by personally submitting to the words of this book. Going further, submitting personally to a book that one writes makes it possible to become a fellow member of the group of people who are ‘written in this book’. This is similar to the way that a legislator has to submit personally to his own laws in order to become a fellow citizen. Under the current system, legislators prefer to pass laws that apply to others while regarding themselves as above the law. But I suggest that this would change under spiritual technology, because a source of some ‘book’ of technical content would have to submit to this book in order to experience the spiritual benefits of this book. This already happens to some extent with normal technology, because those who are ‘above the law’ lack the technical knowledge and skills that are required to successfully use technology.

Looking at this ‘slipping away’ cognitively, verse 45 described the king of the North planting his palace-tent between the seas and the beautiful holy mountain. In contrast, when one is ‘written in the book’, then one can ‘slip away’ to this book as an alternate reality within which one would really want to live. For instance, I have played a number of computer games over the years. But I have avoided destructive games. Instead, I have played games that were partial expressions of where I myself actually wanted to live. For instance, I have have played most of the civilization series, because they portray the growth and development of civilization. If one constructs the mental concept of an alternate reality within which one really wants to live, then spiritual technology would make it possible to ‘slip away’ to this alternate reality.

I do not think that it would be possible to slip away fully into spiritual technology at this early stage. However, even a partial slipping away would provide spiritual tools that would make it possible to escape the general feeling of squeezing and narrowness. Speaking from personal experience, I found it mentally helpful to play computer games because they added concrete Mercy experiences to my abstract theory. In addition, I found that I could handle the feeling of being squeezed as long as I continue to make progress in some significant area.

Two Kinds of Awakening 12:2

Verse 2 describes something that definitely goes beyond normal physical reality. “And many of those who sleep in the dust of the ground will awake, these to everlasting life, but the others to disgrace and everlasting abhorrence.” Sleep is simply the adjectival form of the standard verb ‘sleep’. ‘Dust of the earth’ combines a word that means ‘dry earth, dust’ with a word that means ‘ground, land’. The word ‘land’ was previously seen in 11:39, which was interpreted as postmodern thought parceling out the control of various ‘lands’ to those who acknowledged the new God of safe spaces. The word Adam, which means ‘mankind’, comes from this word ‘land’. The phrase is literally ‘land of dust’. Dry earth is being interpreted as objective Perceiver facts that lack the moisture of Mercy experiences, while dust implies fragmented pieces of Perceiver facts that are not held together any integrated manner. The parallel passage in Revelation 11 also describes the dead being judged and rewarded in verse 18. Four kinds of individuals are mentioned in that verse, including those who had only a fragmented grasp of Perceiver truth. The idea being conveyed in Revelation 11 is that these individuals who exhibited some faith in the past are being rewarded in the present. Daniel 12 appears to be describing something similar.

Verse 2 says that those who sleep are awakening. Based upon parallel passages, I am not convinced that this describes a physical resurrection, in which these individuals come down to earth to live, but rather some sort of lesser revitalization. Verse 2 mentions two kinds of resurrection.

One group awakes ‘to everlasting life’. Life means ‘alive, living’, and everlasting means ‘long-duration, antiquity, futurity’. The primary goal of my research into mental symmetry is to ask the question ‘How can one use all seven parts of the mind in a way that is not destructive but rather continues over the long time?’ In other words, I have been attempting to determine cognitively what it means to live forever. If the book mentioned in verse 1 relates to mental symmetry, then it makes sense that a spiritual application of this book would relate to ‘living forever’. I am not suggesting that mental symmetry makes it possible to live forever, but rather that it addresses the question of how one must think and behave if one is to live forever. In other words, mental symmetry attempts to explore the distinction between the two groups mentioned in verse 2. Both groups are being awoken, but the results are drastically different. Why?

The second group awakes ‘to disgrace and everlasting abhorrence’. Disgrace means ‘a reproach’ and this word was previously used in 11:18, which was interpreted as the Nazi claim that certain races deserve to be wiped out being replaced by the idea that Nazism itself deserves to be wiped out. Thus, this describes a form of personal existence that has no right to exist. Abhorrence is used twice in the Bible and means ‘aversion, abhorrence’. This describes experiences within Mercy thought that are repulsive at a gut level. This abhorrent reproach is also described as everlasting.

One can explain why there are two groups by looking at the nature of Teacher thought. Mercy thought divides experiences into good and bad, while Teacher thought deals with universal laws that are independent of Mercy feelings of good and bad. For instance, one can use a knowledge of nuclear physics either to build nuclear power plants or to build atomic bombs. This means that when God does something in Teacher thought, then this enables both good and evil, and humans have to choose whether they will apply universal law in a manner that is evil or in a manner that is good. Applying universal law in an evil manner ultimately reaches a dead-end if one experiences sufficient painful consequences in Mercy thought.

But suppose that one is a disembodied spirit who is no longer subject to physical laws of nature. It is then possible to create stable modes of existence that combine Teacher pleasure with Mercy pain—supported by Mercy feelings of social approval. I suggest that individuals within this second group are functioning in this manner. However, functioning in such a way would be abhorrent to humans who do live in vulnerable physical bodies that are subject to deep physical and emotional pain. Thus, these perversions would provide examples of what one must not do—an abhorrence to avoid at all cost. Again, I am not certain if these contemptible individuals will be physically resurrected and appear physically on earth. However, I suggest that they would spiritually enable the behavior of lifestyles on earth that were described in verse 45 as being beyond help. 2 Peter 2 appears to be describing such individuals who are being motivated by dark spiritual and angelic powers to behave in abhorrent ways, and 2 Peter also gives the impression that these individuals are providing examples of what one should not do.

Two Kinds of Reward 12:3-4

Verse 3 describes individuals receiving a Teacher kind of reward. “And those who have insight will shine like the glow of the expanse of heaven.” Insight means ‘insight, comprehension’ and was used in 11:33 and 35 to describe those who were responding to the spread of postmodernism by gaining an understanding. In verse 3, these individuals are flourishing with the new spiritual technology. Shine is usually translated as ‘instruct, teach, warn’. Like the glow is actually the noun form of the verb ‘shine’ and only appears twice in the Bible. The other time is in Ezekiel 8:2 which refers to the physical appearance of some heavenly being. Expanse of heaven means ‘an extended surface, expanse’. This term is sometimes used to describe the expanse of heaven. However, heaven is not explicitly mentioned in verse 3. Thus, a more literal rendition would be ‘those who have insight will instruct like the instructing of the expanse’. In other words, those who have understanding in Teacher thought are instructing and warning others with an instruction that reflects the expanse of Teacher universality. This might be accompanied by some form of supernatural light, because heaven appears to be a realm of Teacher thought and some doors between heaven and earth have just been opened. But the emphasis appears to be on instructing people from the vantage point of universal Teacher understanding and not necessarily upon shining with some sort of supernatural light. This describes the approach taken by mental symmetry, which translates the doctrines of Christianity into universal principles of cognition.

Verse 3 goes further. “And those who lead the many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.” Lead to righteousness is the causative form of the verb ‘to be just or righteous’. This word is only used one other time in Daniel in 8:14. Righteousness is defined in other essays as performing Server sequences that are consistent with a Teacher understanding of ‘how things work’. This goes beyond the first half of verse 3. In the first half, those who have insight are teaching others guided by universal Teacher understanding, while in the second half, those who lead to righteousness are helping others to behave in a manner that expresses universal Teacher understanding. Thomas Kuhn describes this as the distinction between philosophy and science. He explains that philosophy is based in general theories while physics is based in exemplars, which are characteristic examples of how things work. One learns philosophy by using words in a logical manner. One learns science by performing the steps of solving many sample problems. I suggest that verse 3 is describing a similar distinction.

Here the word star is specifically mentioned. A star is a small light in the sky, which would represent some luminary of society. The word ‘star’ is mentioned one other time in Daniel in 8:10, which talks of the host of heaven and some of the stars falling to the earth. Thus, a star could refer to some sort of angelic being with inherent power and light. If a door to the supernatural has been opened, then these various meanings would coincide. Here, the word ‘and more’ is added to the word ‘forever’, implying that righteousness does not just continue but rather is able to handle future paradigm shifts.

What matters is that verse 3 describes two forms of reward, one related to Teacher understanding and the other to righteousness. The distinction between these two became clear to me about ten years ago when writing God, Theology, and Cognitive Modules. Since then, I have realized that science has a partial concept of righteousness that is accurate but only applies to physical reality. Thus, one can learn about true righteousness by extending what science does within the objective to the subjective. And the core concept of spiritual technology is that what science does will be extended to the subjective. In contrast, I have found that most Christians, including Christian theologians, do not understand the concept of righteousness. Looking at this in more detail, making a transition from the absolute truth of the Bible to universal Teacher understanding is a major transition, and those who make this transition are being rewarded in the beginning of verse 3. However, making the transition from a God of words to a God of righteousness appears to be an equally large step, and those who succeeded in making this second step are being rewarded in the second half of verse 3.

That brings us to the end of Daniel’s vision. Daniel is told in verse 4 that this vision applies to the future. “But as for you, Daniel, keep these words secret and seal up the book until the end of time; many will roam about, and knowledge will increase.” Keep secret means ‘to stop up, shut up, keep close’. And words means ‘speech, words’. ‘These’ is not in the original Hebrew. Thus, a more literal translation is ‘And you Daniel, shut up and stop talking’. This makes sense in light of the previous verse, because the danger for Daniel as the author of this vision is to remain at the first level of words. If Daniel himself is to be rewarded at the second level of righteousness, then he has to stop functioning at the level of words and speech. Speaking from personal experience, I have had my mouth shut many times over the last decades. It has been very frustrating but it has also forced me to apply my own words.

Seal means ‘to seal, affix the seal, seal up’. And book is the same word that was used in verse 1. I think that this relates to two ideas: First, it takes time for emotional ‘truth’ to turn into absolute truth. Therefore, a book needs to be ignored until some time has passed. Second, society also needs to develop to the point where it will approach a book in the right way. This second point explains the phrase ‘until the end of time’. This same two word Hebrew phrase was seen in 11:35 and 11:40. The idea is that a full understanding of Daniel’s prophecy is not required to make the events happen, but it will help to reestablish respect in the Bible once the events have happened, because it can be shown in the end times that recent history was predicted in detail long ago.

Verse 4 finishes by saying what should happen before the book is unsealed. “Many will roam about, and knowledge will increase.” Roam about means ‘to go or rove about’, and the verb is in the intensive (pi’el). To this verb is added the adjective many. I mentioned that the major distinction between the first part of verse 3 and the second part is the addition of action and movement, with static words being replaced by righteous action. This sort of transition will only happen if many people are moving and doing. Going further, righteousness will not emerge if everyone is doing the same thing. That will merely lead to tradition. Instead, many people should be doing many things, because that will then encourage Teacher thought to come up with general theories that can bring order to all of this doing. Knowledge means ‘knowledge’ and occurs one other time in Daniel in 1:4 to describe Daniel and his friends. This is accompanied by the word many used as a verb. Knowledge involves Perceiver thought. Discovering righteousness requires many people doing many actions, but this is not enough. Instead, Perceiver thought needs to be used in an active manner to find connections between these various ways of behaving. This is suggested by the use of the word ‘many’ as a verb. One is not just passively collecting information but rather actively gaining facts and discovering connections. Summarizing, the end of verse 4 describes the kind of society that is capable of comprehending ‘the book’ at the level of righteousness.

A Paradigm Shift to a New Society 12:5-6

Verses 5-6 make sense if one interprets them as a transition that will happen in the future. Verse 5 says, “Then I, Daniel, looked, and behold, two others were standing, one on this bank of the stream and the other on that bank of the stream.” Most of the words in this verse accurately translate the original Hebrew. Bank means ‘lip, speech, edge’. Stream means ‘stream’, but out of 65 times that it is used in the Old Testament, 45 times refer to the Nile River. This is symbolically significant because crossing the Nile River represents leaving the land of Egypt. And the focus of verse 5 is upon crossing a river, because there are two people, one on each side of the river. These are not explicitly described as people but the fact that one is on each bank of the river is mentioned.

Looking at this further, I suggested earlier that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob represent the three stages of personal transformation, which are leaving childish MMNs in order to construct a concept of God in Teacher thought, following this concept of God in a righteous manner, and then becoming reborn within the realm of Mercy experiences. I have suggested in other essays that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob portray this path at a personal level, while Israel leaving Egypt, going through the wilderness, and entering the Promised Land portray the same sequence at a corporate level. I have also suggested that the real Israel failed to complete this plan because the people of Israel had insufficient faith and because Moses himself was unwilling to start again. This implies that the theoretical return of Jesus followed by spiritual technology will actually be Israel-leaving-Egypt done properly. Thus, verse 5 is talking about the initial transition out of the materialistic mindset of Egypt represented by crossing the Nile.

This will be a major paradigm shift that will involve learning to speak a new language of science, because existing materialistic scientific thought will have to be expanded to include the spiritual and the supernatural. I have attempted to explore what this entails in another essay. Thus, it makes sense that each of these two individuals is standing on the ‘lip or language’ of the stream.

(This word ‘stream’ is used extensively in Exodus 7-8 when referring to the plagues that preceded the Exodus of the Israelites out of Egypt. However, a different word sea is used in Exodus 14 when talking about the Israelites ‘crossing the Red Sea’. I suspect that this is because in Exodus 14 the Israelites were actually crossing the Gulf of Suez from the Sinai into Saudi Arabia at Nuweiba and not crossing the Nile River. However, even if this was the case, crossing the Nile was the first step in leaving Egypt.)

Verse 6 describes a third person who is standing on top of the river. “And someone said to the man dressed in linen, who was above the waters of the stream, ‘How long will it be until the end of these wonders?’” (The words in italics are not in the original Hebrew.) The word man is explicitly used and means ‘man’ and not ‘mankind’. This man is literally above the waters of the stream. This represents making the transition from one side of the Nile to the other. The explicit reference to a man is significant. First, it means that making this major paradigm shift is compatible with humanity. One does not have to be an angel to cross the Nile. But the explicit mention of a man also means that male technical thought will be required to make this transition, implying that female mental networks will be inadequate. Saying this another way, Contributor-controlled technical thought is needed to make a transition from one set of mental networks to another. One can see this principle illustrated by the behavior of the Israelites in the wilderness, because they kept pining for the food and comfort of Egypt, implying that they had not made a sufficient transition away from the mental networks of Egypt.

This man is ‘dressed in linen’. Clothing is interpreted in other essays as the fabric of social interaction. In other words, if crossing the Nile requires letting go of existing mental networks, then what sort of mental networks should guide society during this transition? Linen means ‘white linen’. It is used 23 times in the Old Testament and always refers either to sacred garments worn by priests in the tabernacle or else to garments worn by angelic messengers. This implies that social interaction during this transition should be guided by concepts of holiness and angelic message.

This interpretation is supported by the question that is asked of the man above the river. “How long will it be until the end of these wonders? The word wonder means ‘a miracle -- marvellous thing, wonder’, and is used once in Daniel. The question is more literally, ‘until how long the end of the miracles’. Stated simply, when will the supernatural activity end? The original leaving of Israel from Egypt and crossing the Nile was preceded by a number of miracles. Most of these miracles involved the Nile River, and the word ‘stream’ is used when referring to the Nile in these miracles. The implication is that the paradigm shift described in Daniel 12 will also be accompanied by significant supernatural activity. One miracle may be exciting, but a continual stream of miracles would threaten people’s sanity. Thus, many would be asking how long their sanity would be under attack by the supernatural activity.

Shattering the Hand of Holy People 12:7

Verse 7 provides the answer. It begins by emphasizing the source of this answer. “And I heard the man dressed in linen, who was above the waters of the stream…” This phrase is a precise repetition of the phrase in verse 6. Hear indicates that one is interacting with this person at the level of Teacher words. When one goes through some existential crisis, then one will cling to some set of mental networks for emotional security. Putting this together, those who are experiencing this time of supernatural transition will find emotional stability in the Teacher words and theories of the male technical thinking that is standing above this transition.

This idea of finding emotional stability is portrayed in the behavior of this man about the stream: “And he raised his right hand and his left toward heaven, and swore by Him who lives forever that it would be for a time, times, and half a time.” Raise means ‘to be high or exalted, rise’. Cognitively speaking, moving upward is interpreted as heading in the direction of Teacher generality. I have found that right and left make neurological sense when applied to parts of the body in the Bible. Thus, right hand would refer to left hemisphere technical thought. This describes the technical thinking of mathematics and science, which works with the sequences of left hemisphere thought. This is then followed by the left, which suggests that abstract technical thought will have to be followed immediately by concrete technical thought with its focus upon experiences. Applying this to the supernatural realm, my general hypothesis is that angels live within what humans referred to as left hemisphere abstract thought. Thus, understanding angelic activity will require starting with left hemisphere abstract thought. However, this angelic activity is affecting the human realm; therefore, it will be necessary to jump immediately from angelic abstract thought to human concrete experience. Both of these hands are being held up to heaven, which refers either to the abstract realm of Teacher thought or to a real heaven—which is also a realm of Teacher thought. This is consistent with the idea of humans attempting to understand angelic intervention.

Swear means to ‘swear, take an oath’ and is in the passive (nifal), which implies that one is swearing by something else that is active and stronger. The phrase ‘swears by him who lives forever’ is interesting because an almost identical phrase can be seen in Revelation 10:6 where an angel also ‘swears by him who lives forever and ever’, and that angel also ‘raises his right hand to heaven’. This is the only time in Revelation that anyone swears. Looking at this cognitively, the angel in Revelation 10 gives a little book to the human author of Revelation. Daniel 12 indicates that the ‘man over the stream’ is helping humans to cross the river from natural into super-plus-natural. This help is coming at least partially from the book being given to humans. Saying this more clearly, mental symmetry is a possible candidate for the little book of Revelation 10, and mental symmetry uses a rational theory of the mind to explain religion, science, the spiritual, the supernatural, and the natural. This makes it possible for humans to deal with an onslaught of the supernatural and the spiritual without going insane. This focus upon preserving sanity is brought out in Revelation 10:7 because the angel swears that ‘the mystery of God is finished’, which implies a rational understanding of God and the supernatural.

Daniel 12:7 says that this supernatural intervention will last ‘a time, times, and half’. The word time means ‘appointed time, place, or meeting’. This word was previously used in 11:27, 29, 35 to say that the end would happen at the appointed time, which was interpreted as pointing out that certain requirements had to be met regardless of how long this took in actual time. Thus, I suggest that it is inappropriate to equate a ‘time’ with one year. Instead, what will happen is that some requirement will first be met, then another double requirement will be met, and finally the end will come halfway through meeting the final requirement.

I am not exactly sure what these requirements are, but verse 7 does make it clear what goal has to be reached. “And as soon as to finish smashing the hand of the holy people, all these events will be completed.” Finish means ‘to be complete’ and was previously used in 11:36 to say that the indignation had to be finished. That was interpreted as the triumph of postmodern thought over absolute truth and traditional cultural norms. In simple terms, postmodern thought had to continue until all of the existing structure of absolute truth was torn down. Smashing means to ‘dash to pieces’ and is in the intensive (pi’el) form. This word is used once in Daniel.

The NASB says ‘the holy people’ but there is no ‘the’ in the Hebrew. Instead, what is being shattered is ‘hand of holy people’. Cognitively speaking, this describes building technical thought upon the emotional foundation of treating some group of people as special and different. This could refer to treating the Bible as absolute truth. It could also refer to viewing the Jews as a special chosen race. It could include all of the lifestyles that are being treated as ‘holy people’ who are special and different. Finally, it could also refer to the idea that humans are special and different or that only humans can be saved by God. The ‘hand’ of all of these needs to be shattered, and an extensive experience of the supernatural would do such shattering, because all emotional pretenses of groups of people claiming to be special and different would be overturned by the behavior of supernatural beings that actually were special and different. And any inherent contradictions between technical thinking and associated mental networks would also be brought to light through spiritual power. This was discussed earlier when looking at the example of the computer game. Saying this more simply, any inherent conflicts between engineering and marketing would be revealed.

I should add that this same word ‘people’ was used in verse 1 to describe Daniel’s people. And presumably Daniel’s people are also holy. This implies that the hand of Daniel’s people would also need to be shattered. I suggest that the solution to this apparent dilemma lies in recognizing that there are two kinds of holiness. Something can be holy for Mercy reasons, which means that Mercy thought will feel that people, experiences, and objects associated with this item are special and different. This can be seen in the word people, which means ‘folk, men, nation, people’. However, holinesss can also be defined from a Teacher perspective, which means regarding something as special and different because it is a particularly good expression of general Teacher order—it is close to a Platonic form. This new kind of Teacher-based holiness started to emerge in 11:44, which referred to the holy, beautiful mountain, because ‘mountain’ and ‘beautiful’ are both expressions of Teacher thought.

For instance, Christianity can be redefined from a cognitive perspective as following the path to mental wholeness, and this redefinition of Christianity is capable of applying equally to humans, angels, and spiritual beings. Thus, Christianity is a special religion—from a Teacher perspective. Similarly, the Jew being a member of ‘the chosen race’ can be redefined cognitively as Jews being forcibly enrolled in God’s historical school of character development. This is also a Teacher perspective. And if Daniel’s people are carrying out a general role in making the transition from natural to supernatural, then they could also be viewed as ‘holy’ from a Teacher perspective. What is being shattered in verse 7 is the hand of all Mercy concepts of holiness based in MMNs of ‘folk, men, nation, people’. The verb ‘shattered’ is significant because it does not mean that everyone within such a tribe will be annihilated in a genocidal fashion. Rather, it indicates that human tribes and cultures will no longer be regarded as a legitimate source of technical thought. This is significant, because by the end of chapter 11, postmodern thought was treating MMNs of ‘folk, man, nation, people’ as the fundamental sources of institutional and government might.

The Final Outcome 12:8-9

In verse 8, Daniel responds to these comments. “But as for me, I heard but did not understand; so I said, ‘My lord, what will be the outcome of these events?’” Hear means ‘to hear’ and was previously used in verse 7 to describe hearing the man who was above the river. Understanding means ‘discern’ or ‘understand’ and was previously used in 11:37 to describe postmodern thought not discerning historical doctrine or femininity. The postmodern scholar can still discuss Christian doctrine in some detail, but this is not accompanied by any discernment. Similarly, Daniel is hearing the words, but this is not accompanied by discernment. Applying this to a future transition from natural to supernatural, I cannot fully discern what this means because it lies totally outside my personal experience. All I can do is extrapolate from the spiritual ‘vibes’ that I occasionally sense as well as look for analogous situations within human experience.

This inadequate understanding can be seen in the form of Daniel’s response. He uses the word ‘my lord’, which implies an attitude of respect in Mercy thought. This is a common word, but the only other time it is used in Daniel is in 1:10, where the chief official in charge of Daniel used this term to refer to the king. The official used this term because he was scared of the king’s power. Similarly, if the supernatural realm impinged upon human reality to the extent of shattering the hand of existing MMNs of ‘holy people’, then humans would be scared of ‘them’ and address them as ‘my lord’, just as the official in chapter 1 was scared of the power of the king.

The word outcome means ‘the after part, end’, and these events is just the generic word for ‘these’. In other words, Daniel is currently in the middle of crossing the stream and he wants to know what the other side of the stream will be like. Saying this cognitively, he wants to know when humanity can get back to its previous state of thinking in terms of the normal Mercy experiences of human reality.

It may seem that the response in verse 9 does not answer the question, but it actually does. “And he said, “Go your way, Daniel, for these words will be kept secret and sealed up until the end time.” The word go means ‘to go, come, walk’ and is in the imperative. This word is used as a noun in modern Judaism to describe the practice of Jewish law. ‘Your way’ is not in the original Hebrew. In simple terms, Daniel is being told to act. Looking at this cognitively, the way to descend from above the river down to the other side is by adding human action to angelic power. This is related to the idea of righteousness, which combines human actions in Server thought with a general understanding in Teacher thought. In the same way that doing homework gives mental stability to the Teacher words of instruction, so the doing of human action would give mental stability to humans living under angelic power. Summarizing, Mercy feelings of honor need to be replaced by the Server confidence of acting.

Continuing with verse 9, ‘the words’ was previously used in verse 4 where Daniel was told to shut up the words and seal the book. In verse 9, the words are described as shut up and sealed, using the same two words that were found in verse 4. Looking at this cognitively, in verse 4, Daniel could choose whether or not to seal up the words, because he was still functioning largely at the level of words. In contrast, the words in verse 9 have become shut up and sealed, meaning that it is no longer possible to choose to function at the level of words. This relates to the two levels of reward mentioned in verse 3, because people are being forced to go beyond the first level of words to the second level of righteousness. Saying this more clearly, the physical body programs Mercy thought with experiences that have built-in emotional labels of pain and pleasure. Thus, Perceiver thought has to gain confidence to be able to function in the midst of Mercy emotions. (This means that there is some truth to the concept of embodiment. But the development of mental confidence makes it possible to transcend psychological concepts of embodiment.) In contrast, human Teacher words do not come with built-in Teacher emotions. My general hypothesis is that the angelic realm adds inherent Teacher emotions to Teacher content, forcing an angel to gain sufficient Server confidence to hold on to Server sequences in the midst of these Teacher emotions. Verse 9 makes cognitive sense as describing what it would feel like for humans to be subject to the Teacher emotions of the angelic realm.

Clarifying another topic, I have been referring to both the spiritual and angelic realms, and I suggest that these are two distinct realms. The spiritual realm interacts with humans through mental networks, whereas the angelic realm is a Teacher-based realm that is the mirror image of the human realm. As far as I can tell, one has to go through the spiritual realm in order to travel between the human and angelic realms. Thus, chapter 12 began with a discussion of the spiritual but this has now turned into a discussion of the angelic.

Adding some more details, in verse 3 people were instructing and leading people to righteousness. This implies that the level of spiritual power was still at a relatively comfortable level. This is consistent with the idea that the spiritual realm does not impose content upon the mind but rather acquires its content from existing mental networks. For instance, spirits and demons are described as possessing and empowering human urges in the New Testament. Angels, in contrast, are never described as possessing humans but rather arrive on the scene with their own agenda and message. Verses 6-9 appear to be describing spiritual technology expanding into a long-term angelic visitation that is far more pervasive than the previous spiritual technology.

Verse 9 says that this will continue until ‘the end time’. This same phrase has appeared several times, the last time in verse 4. That leads to the question of which ‘end time’ is being referred to. One could interpret this as the words of Daniel’s prophecy not making sense until the time of their fulfillment comes near. And one could also interpret this as words failing until the time of angelic power comes to an end. After all, Daniel just asked in verse 8 what the final outcome would be.

Another Period of Cognitive Development 12:10

Verse 10 also makes sense within the context of attempting to live as humans within an atmosphere of supernatural angelic power. Verse 10 begins by describing a purifying process. “Many will be purged, cleansed, and refined.” Purge means ‘to purify’, cleanse means ‘to be white’, and refine means ‘to smelt, refine, test’. A similar sequence was seen back in 11:35 consisting of refine, purify, and whiten. However, the order is different as well as the verb family. In 11:35 refine is a normal verb (pa’al), purify is intensive (pi’el), and whiten is causative (hifil). In 12:10, both purify and white are in the reflexive (hitpael), while refine is in the passive (nifal).

The first sequence was happening under societal pressure based in MMNs. Thus, the first stage was to refine the mind by gaining the mental confidence that is required to handle the emotional experiences of normal life. This gave the mind the tools that are required to tackle the second stage of purifying. This second stage was more intensive than normal because it was happening within a societal environment that was being bombarded by many impure MMNs. The final stage of whitening is in the causative because one had to choose to make this happen. Whitening would only happen if one caused it to happen, because it required responding in a manner that went beyond the comprehension of society. For instance, mental symmetry does not submit to postmodern thought but rather attempts to gain the confidence that is required to think rationally about the mental networks of postmodernism. But mental symmetry also does not attempt to remain pure by rejecting the conclusions of postmodernism. Instead, it accepts the findings of postmodernism, but interprets these findings from the perspective of whitening—how does one move beyond the incompleteness that is being attacked by postmodernism to a whole mind? This is not a common way of thinking today, which means that it will only happen if one causes it to happen.

The second sequence, in contrast, is functioning within an environment of angelic Teacher emotion. The first stage is to purify, which is in the reflexive. This gives the impression that one is being inundated by strange emotions and that the first step is to sort these out internally. Saying this another way, one is being inundated by many mental networks, both MMNs and TMNs, and one has to place these into an emotional hierarchy. The reflexive suggests that this will be a personal struggle that will have to be faced as an individual. This may be because angelic communication seems to function at a telepathic level. Saying this more clearly, stories of alien and angelic encounters invariably talk about humans and supernatural beings communicating telepathically. Humans are not currently capable of telepathic communication, but rather can treat the internal world as something that is hidden from other individuals. Encountering telepathic communication would face humans with the new challenge of mental purity.

The second stage is whitening, which is also in the reflexive. The first stage placed metal networks into an emotional hierarchy. Teacher thought could find order-within-complexity within such purity, and humans living within the Teacher-driven atmosphere of angelic power would think that this is the ultimate goal. But humans live within Mercy experiences, and Teacher-driven purity is not enough to live as a human. Instead, one needs to go beyond purity to whiteness—beyond unison to harmony. This means determining which elements must work together to live as a human within angelic power, which goes beyond asking what it means to live as an angel within angelic power. This is also an internal question which a person must ask himself, because living as a human being is something that I ultimately do as an individual.

Looking at this from a personal perspective, as I have been writing these essays, I have sensed that I am being guided by angelic forces, and I have tried to allow my thinking and behavior to be guided by Teacher thought in a pure manner. However, I have also sensed something else. These angelic forces seem to insist upon overturning my cultural and religious MMNs. But if I complain and say that something is required for me to exist as a human being or that I require something to function as a whole mind, then it seems that the angelic beings listen to my statements and adjust their plans to take my concerns into account. They also appear to be challenging my inadequate MMNs in a manner that brings the least pain to me as a human being. Looking at this more generally, when humans interact with angels and/or aliens, then it is the responsibility of humans to stand up for what it means to be human. This is different than protecting human culture, religion, or lifestyle. Mental networks of culture, religion, and lifestyle are largely arbitrary, while what it means to be human is based in the structure and functioning of the human mind and human body. Protecting lifestyle and culture needs to be replaced by protecting humanity. This is an example of the general principle that existence is more fundamental than pain and pleasure. I should add that this principle is not being followed by current UFOlogists, because the standard approach is to try to contact aliens by denying one’s humanity. That is like walking into a cage of tigers and pretending that one is not a vulnerable human.

The third stage is refining, which is in the passive. Refining builds the Perceiver and Server confidence that is required to function in the midst of emotional pressure. The first two stages involved personal existence itself, which is more basic than functioning as a human being. Once these existential questions are settled, then merely attempting to behave as a human in the midst of emotional pressure would be sufficient to do the refining work of building mental confidence. Merely existing as a human within an angelic environment would generate enough emotional pressure to build mental confidence, explaining why the refining is in the passive tense.

Verse 10 says that ‘many’—but not all—will follow this path of cognitive development. This suggests that it will also be possible to respond to angelic pressure in a passive manner as sheeple, members of a herd who cease to think of themselves as individual human beings. In other words, the real battleground will be the mind and being reflexive will be the real challenge.

The second phrase of verse 10 describes one possible path. “But the wicked will act wickedly; and none of the wicked will understand.” Wicked means ‘wicked, criminal’ and refers to ‘an actively bad person’. Act wickedly is the verb form of the same word, and is in the causative (hifil) form. The idea is that it is possible to choose to apply angelic power in an inhuman manner, similar to the way that the modern arms industry uses science and technology in an inhuman manner to design and build weapons of destruction. This has the obvious result of damning oneself, because one is choosing as a human to embrace angelic power in a manner that is inhuman. But if such self-damnation has not stopped people in the present, it obviously will not stop individuals in the future. Cognitively speaking, combining Teacher understanding with Mercy pain is mentally stable, because the Teacher order balances the Mercy pain, and both pain and pleasure are equally exciting for Exhorter thought. In addition, MMNs of social approval and TMNs of organizational structure can be used to make up for the Mercy pain.

However, verse 10 says that there is also a Teacher price to pay for such wickedness. Understand is the same word ‘discern’ which Daniel said in verse 8 that he did not have. In other words, an internal conflict between Teacher pleasure and Mercy pain will prevent the mind from gaining a deeper comprehension. Verse 10 states that none of the wicked will discern, meaning that this is a universal, inescapable, cognitive principle. For instance, if reports are to be believed, then the American military has had access to alien technology for about 70 years. However, reports also seem to indicate that humans have had not much success in deciphering this technology. This is consistent with the idea that the wicked cannot discern because they are approaching angelic power with a fundamental internal inconsistency. This is the flip side of the previous phrase of verse 10, which emphasized the need to interact with angelic power in a manner that preserves human identity and functioning.

Verse 10 finishes by describing the positive alternative. “But those who have insight will understand.” Insight means ‘insight, comprehension’ and was previously seen in verse 3 to describe the first group that will ‘shine brightly’. Understand means ‘to discern’ and was used in verse 8 to describe what Daniel did not have.

These same two words were also seen in 11:33 in the phrase ‘those who have insight among the people will give understanding to the many’. That was interpreted as the initial attempt in about the 1970s to approach religion and morality from a rational perspective. However, there is a subtle distinction between these two verses. In 11:33 the initial understanding was happening within the context of the MMNs of some ‘people’ and it was also being accepted by a group of people. Also, the second word ‘understand’ was in the causative (hifil) form, which implies that it was possible for one person to cause others to understand. This group context and group causation is missing in 12:10, because individuals who have insight are themselves gaining understanding. The general principle is that understanding can no longer be transmitted verbally because words now have an emotional cost. Each individual has to fight a personal reflexive battle to move from insight to understanding. Notice also that what came first in 11:33 comes at the end in 12:10. This is similar to the way that humans currently deal with Mercy experiences. The emotional experiences come first and then the rational analysis. 12:10 suggests that living within an angelic atmosphere would lead to a similar kind of progression. The emotional Teacher energy? waves? aura? would come first followed by the rational Teacher understanding. That is not how Teacher thought currently functions in humanity. In fact, it is so unlike the present that I do not know what word to use to describe this external feeling of Teacher emotions.

Another Abomination of Desolation 12:11-13

Verse 11 mentions again the abomination of desolation. “And from the time that the regular sacrifice is abolished and the abomination that makes desolate is set up, there will be 1,290 days.” One might think initially that this is the same abomination of desolation described in 11:31. But there are subtle differences which suggests that this is not the case. The same five words in the same order are being used in both cases. Abolish means ‘to turn aside’. Daily sacrifice actually means ‘continuity’ and sacrifice is implied. Set up means ‘to give, put, set’. Abomination means ‘detested thing’. And desolation means ‘to be desolated or appalled’. Thus, society is turning away from continuity and setting up a detested thing of being appalled. Applying this to current society, postmodern thought rejects traditional knowledge and expertise and replaces this by the ideal of focusing upon detested things and being appalled.

For instance, I often read the Guardian newspaper, because it talks about many topics that are not covered in North American papers. But one can also see a mindset of focusing upon detested things and being appalled. This is illustrated by a number of headlines from the main page of today’s paper (March 20, 2021). Quoting the most obvious headlines: ‘Biden and Harris condemn anti-Asian violence during Atlanta visit’. ‘PM condemns a closed-door espionage trial of Canadian in China’. ‘Professor threatened to fail student caught up in Myanmar coup’. ‘Bolsonaro uses Brazil’s dictatorship-era law as protesters depict him as a Nazi’. ‘My year-long fight to hold my attacker to account’. ‘Spare me the excuses for the latest Angry White Guy’s killing spree’. ‘Northern Ireland’s women won abortion rights but its politicians won’t accept that’. ‘Biden faces tough test in reversing Trump’s cruel border legacy’. Notice that in each case some detested behavior is being described and people are being appalled. In most of these cases, the behavior should be detested. But the problem is that one is still focusing upon MMNs of detestable behavior rather than being guided by TMNs of mental wholeness and understanding. Thus, one will be emotionally driven to continually find new examples of detestability about which one can become appalled.

This second abomination of desolation has a different underlying structure that avoids this shortcoming. Even though the same five words are in the same order, they are not in the same form. In 11:31, abolish is in the causative (hifil), set up is a normal verb (pa’al), abomination has the definite article, and desolation is in the intensive (pi’el). This leads to the translation ‘They will cause to abolish the continuity, and set up the abomination of intense appalling’. In 12:11, abolish is in the passive causative (hufal), set up is in the infinitive, abomination is without the definite article, and desolation is in the normal (pa’al) form. This leads to the translation, ‘abolishing continuity will be caused and to set up abomination of appalling’. Notice that the focus in 11:31 was upon directly setting up this abomination of desolation, whereas 12:11 describes an abomination of desolation emerging as a byproduct of something else. In other words, the chapter 11 version is driven by MMNs of being appalled at unpleasant MMNs, while the chapter 12 version is driven by TMNs of angelic power.

Looking at this in more detail, the goal of postmodern thought is to cause a break in the continuity of society; it is trying to be post-modern. Postmodern thought sets up as its ideal being intensely appalled and protesting against existing authority. The appearance of angelic power, in contrast, would signal the start of something new, and this newness would indirectly lead to the fall of the old. The introduction of the new would indirectly cause an abolishing of continuity. And because old attitudes of cultural lifestyle preservation could not survive in the new, this would be accompanied by an abomination of desolation. But being appalled by the old would not be the primary emotion. Instead, it would be a byproduct of attempting to survive within the new. Putting this more simply, the postmodern says ‘How dare you impose your ancient propaganda upon society! I am appalled and I will treat you as an abomination.’ A person attempting to live within angelic power would say ‘The way we used to think and behave needs to stop because attempting to function that way within angelic power leads to results that are abominable and appalling.’

Two numbers are then mentioned. Verse 11 mentions 1290 days. Verse 12 says “Blessed is the one who is patient and attains to the 1,335 days!” In both cases, day is explicitly mentioned. Blessed means ‘happiness, blessedness’. Patient means ‘to wait’. Attain means ‘reach, extend’. I do not know what these numbers mean. But a similar focus upon patience can be seen in Matthew 24:13, which says that “the one who endures to the end is the one who will be saved”.

Looking at this cognitively, it is hardest to exhibit patience right before the end. Verse 12 seems to be saying that one will be much happier if one can manage to wait a little longer at the end without immediately trying to escape. My best guess is that when the period of intense angelic activity comes to an end, then it will be possible to escape right away or else stick with this angelic pressure for a little while longer. One of the reasons to remain a little longer is that this turns being forced to do something into free will. This principle is mentioned in Matthew 5:40-41 in the Sermon on the Mount, which states that one should go two miles with a person when one is demanded to go one mile. I am not sure what else to pull out of this verse.

Verse 13 ends the book by looking again at Daniel. “But as for you, go your way to the end; then you will rest and stand for your allotted portion at the end of the days.” Go is again the word that indicates human activity. End is mentioned but not time. Rest is mentioned once in Daniel. Inheritance actually means ‘a lot’ because inheritance was distributed by lot in Jewish times. This is the only mention of inheritance in Daniel. The previous verse talked about being happier if one waited a little bit longer. There is another form of thought based in resting and inheritance that goes further than waiting and enduring. One continues functioning within Teacher-guided thought until one can do so in a state of rest. When one reaches that point, then one no longer receives a reward or payment for what one has done. Instead, one receives an inheritance based upon who one has become. Righteousness has been discussed several times in this essay. Resting and inheritance appear to go beyond righteousness. Righteousness allows behavior to be guided by a Teacher understanding. Resting behaves in a certain manner because of who one is. Resting does not fixate upon the goal but simply goes till the end. And when resting finally stands, it receives an inheritance based upon who one is. I do not know all the details of this way of functioning, but I do know that one only reaches this level when all options have failed, there is no hope, and yet one still continues. On the one hand, there is total despair. But on the other hand, one finds that for some reason one can continue existing and functioning within this total despair. This is not the same as cynicism, because cynicism follows the general Teacher theory that there are no good Mercy experiences, and that is a deep dark hole from which it is difficult to escape. Instead, this ‘rest’ lives within goodness because goodness is intrinsically good. I think that this relates to Platonic forms.


Scholars have observed that the first 35 verses of Daniel 11 correspond well with Jewish history. And many have suggested that the rest of Daniel 11 and 12 will be fulfilled at some time in the future. This essay has built upon that starting point. We examined where Judaism diverged from fulfilling Daniel 11 and we analyzed this divergence in terms of cognitive principles and Jewish history.

We then proposed that the sequence of Daniel 11-12 is being repeated in modern Western history, and we have analyzed Western history from the Enlightenment until the present and have concluded that we are currently (in early 2021) at about verse 40 of Chapter 11. We then suggested what would happen next by extrapolating from current trends. (Note from 2022: It is possible that we have now reached the end of chapter 11. Time will tell if this is an accurate assessment.)

That brought us to 11:45 which appears to be describing the emergence of something radically new. We suggested what this might be by looking at parallel passages in Matthew 24 and Revelation 11. Continuing with Daniel 12, it became obvious that something radically new is being described that involves the spiritual and the supernatural. We then attempted to use various bits of knowledge and experience from the present to decipher what this future new reality might be like. We then concluded that the primary challenge would be to function as a rational human individual within this new environment.

We also saw this new environment would challenge existing ways of thinking in major ways. Christianity would have to move beyond absolute truth to universal truth based in cognitive principles. Judaism would have to move beyond its current combination of mysticism and tribalism. Science would have to recognize that physical reality is only part of the picture. Technology would have to be used in a way that is consistent with order and structure. And society would have to focus upon pursuing human well-being rather than attempting to protect human lifestyles and culture.

That is the end of the book of Daniel, but it is not the end of the story. If one wishes to probe further, then one must turn to other books of the Bible. I have attempted to do so in other essays. (Note from 2022: Matthew 25-28 appears to describe this period of the near future.)