The culture of technical toys, from robotic gadgets to video games to smart bombs and drone planes, is a culture where prejudices and illusions became materialized, have found technological bodies to “live” in all their repetitive and maniacal mode of existence. “Now it is a question of shattering man’s unity of perception and of producing automatically the persistence of a disturbance in self-perception that will have lasting effects on man’s rapport with the real.”
(Paul Virilio, “The Art of the Motor”, Un. of Minnesota pr., 1995, p. 146 – 147)

Technologized (processed) food is also part of this incarnation of illusory thinking into material form. “A TV pathology particularly affects children and underprivileged communities said to be ‘at risk’: abuse of TV, following the depredations of slave labor, producing various morbid phenomena such as obesity or anorexia nervosa, poor cerebral performance, language problems, special disorientation, aggressiveness, alcoholism, and drug abuse.”
(Paul Virilio, “The Art of the Motor”, ibid, p. 62)

To provide a material form for belief is especially good for commerce. Long ago the Church swallowed Christ, but today Christ and the Church are both swallowed by super-wealthy empires of Evangelical TV-broadcasting corporations. Christ and Church became incarnated into Money and under pop-Christianity have become accumulated into profit-making institutions.

Spirituality (as the feeling of non-identity with norms of everyday life) became used as an escapist rout from the violent condition of the world. It is as if the extreme physical danger inseparable from the conditions of our ancestors’ life precluded the development of a genuine spirituality and instead stimulated the pop-spiritual forms cheering the human being with the hope for immortality. “Yet when the Eastern ways are understood more deeply, it appears that nirvana is not after, beyond, or away from birth-and-death (samsara), but that, in the Zen master Hakuin’s words: ‘This very earth is the Lotus Land of purity, and this very body the Body of Buddha.’ Eternity is now, and in the light of unrepressed vision the physical organism and the physical world turn out to be a divine world.” (Alan W. Watts, ibid, p. 148) But how can human beings be trapped in endless wars, incessant hunger, or in morbid competition instead of being enlightened by real – demythologized, not escapist-spirituality?

How can we, frightened and fragile in front of nature and society ruled by elites, learn to differentiate between violent death and mortality in general? How can we not be afraid of death when our pre-historic and historic experience tells us that every death is a violent one – a result of assault or illness? The incapacity to accept death is resulting in death’s domination over life. “Archaic man conquers death by living the life of his dead ancestors… Hence archaic society has no real history… Death is overcome in a condition that the real actuality of life passes into archaic, immortal and dead things; money is the man; the immortality of an estate or a corporation resides in the dead things which alone endure… (Norman O. Brown, “Life against Death: The Psychoanalytic Meaning of History”, Wesleyan Univ. Pr., 1972, p. 284, 287). The obsessive desire to restore our lost past in the technologically constructed future makes high-tech post-modernism not contradictory to human conservatism… The leaders of global corporations shake hands with the religious fundamentalists.

Spiritual longing began to be perceived not as experience inside life, but as escapism from what exists. Our ancestors’ understandable disgust of greed and cruelty in this world was translated into the dream of a caring and generous world after death. Today, with growing financial insecurity, greed for consumption and proneness for angry frustrations, it is almost impossible to reach the psychological and intellectual maturity to live spiritually inside the factual world. It was easier to imagine life after death than that human beings can behave more morally inside this world. Disgust and contempt for the factual world becomes the pre-condition of eternal salvation. Transcendental meditation tries to stage for our consciousness – the very dying as resurrecting, reaching bliss through disappearing from material world.

Good that can take place only as a part of a ritual celebrating of human obedience to Authority, not in this world but in between the two worlds, on the way to eternity. People’s hysterical self-enrichment is blind accumulation of money and valuables, as if it’s their far future. It is, as if, the more technologically we are oriented and the more we destroy the natural world, the more heavenly spiritual we are.

In any moment when the social-historical process is in retreat – when rich and powerful decision-makers distort the socio-political processes – eternal habit of human orientation on eternity awakens with all its might. It awakens with its concomitant ingredients of spiritual escapism, passionate appeal for personal salvation, collective self-aggrandizement and scapegoating. A primordial murder…of a divine being, quite often a woman or a maiden, sometimes a child or a man, who allowed himself to be immolated in order that tubers or fruit trees should grow from his body. The death and maiming of civilians in wars, the growth of destructive and contaminating power of the weapons, peasants losing their lands, chronic urban unemployment, the absence of humanistic education, coronation of superstitions and prejudices, and self-destructive behaviors (crime, drug abuse, consumption abuse, and hate) are indications of a new return of “primordial murder”, a start of a new period of mass immolation.

Even under the Democratic Administrations the spiritual escapism (traditional pop-spirituality) was flowering in the US in multitude of schools of pop-spiritual salvation. As traditional life of material deprivations always pushes human beings to dream about well-being in eternity, the improvement of the material conditions of life instead of weakening the ideal of eternal life in the pop mind, had created a more prosperous image of eternity. Pop-spirituality is a perfect product for consumption. It has always food for our fearful and hopeful souls, for our trembling hearts.

Right after being born, spirituality was kidnapped and enslaved by our fallen condition of belonging to a harsh world of toil and survival. Will we be able to return our spirituality to life or will we be forever in two worlds mixed with one another? “Among all divinities Buddha…refused to be God and, because of that decision, refused to be man. He thus conquered, at once, the temptation of eternity and the no less insidious temptation of history… [What] Buddha proposed to us at the beginning of our history is perhaps only realizable at the end of it: only the man free of the burden of historical necessity and of the tyranny of the authority will be able to contemplate fearlessly his own nothingness.” (Octavio Paz, “Claude Levi-Strauss”, Cornell Un. Pr., 1970, p. 137 – 138) While immortality without eternity is a much more sophisticated solution to the problem of human life than immortality on the sofa of Paradise, it is still the inability to accept death. Even nothingness is more preferable than death – Non-Being is still a mode of Being (“Brahma is identical with sunyata: both are the No that is the answer of the Absolute to relation – the world, time, gods, and to discursive thought. We have a tendency to exaggerate the opposition between Brahma and sunyata, between the theory of Atman [Being] and that of Anatta [Non-being], because we conceive of this opposition in terms of Western metaphysics.” Octavio Paz, “Alternating Current”, Viking Pr., 1973, p.129. Something in death is less preferable than even primordial emptiness. To refuse history is much wittier than to fetishize it, as Christians have done by belief in the Second Coming, Marxists with the idea of transformations of historical epochs until the final phase of Communism, or Western Democracies with their orientation on a permanent technical-scientific, technological and economic progress. But what if the body is to human being as history is to the human species? Can the devaluation of individual flesh and historical time belong to the same archetype of thinking?