“An associate asked me “what makes a kshatriya given etymological and epistemological meaning pls”, in reference to a conversation he’d been having with another about “strong men”, “real leaders”, and “what the world needs” given its present circumstances. The following represents a compilation of my responses, edited slightly for formatting and readability. It is not what I would consider my best nor cleanest work, in terms of the writing [since it’s a somewhat hasty series of re-edits and re-integrations on a rather dysjointed initial flow, inter alia]; but the concept-work should hopefully make up for that shortcoming. :
“The first thing to be said, is that attempting to ‘reform the world’ – Krinvanto Vishvam Aryam – would require not [just] Kshatriyas … but straight-up, a ‘combined arms’ effort from all caturvarnas
In particular, if you think about it, the efforts to reshape the world, *can* be done via ‘militant’ means, via ‘strong men’ who’re prepared and equipped [and numerous enough] to get ‘rough’ and make things directly happen via ‘pushing’ and chopping things into shape.
What is actually more effective, especially on an enduring frontage, is the ‘culture change’ required to both i) create/bring forth the sorts of people necessary to cause further change and progression [i.e. to give it ‘rampancy’ – in the same manner that a spark does not seek to burn down a forest all by itself, but rather ignites further flames to join with it in a far more vastly encompassing burning effort than would otherwise be possible, buoyed by the winds of inspiration, and further energized by the tinder-dry fuel-sources of a society and a loka yearning for improvement] ii) to support and embed, foster these worthwhile developments as and after they have been promulgated [i.e. to try and turn the temporary exertions and often even more temporary outcomes of a particular period of frenetic activity … into the ‘new’ normal, the ‘real’, the base and the bedrock for further subsequent development; as opposed to what usually happens, with this or that forceful imposer managing to generate a shift that lasts part-way through their latter life-time and maybe a bit afterwards, possibly even a few decades or centuries if they somehow have competent heirs]. [This is, of course, in large part why “ideas” are regarded as such an omnipotent weapon, when one takes a step back and engages the more ‘macroscopic’ view]
Now *that*, of course, is something one would be expecting the ‘mouths’ of the Purusha model of society to be doing, the *minds*. Which Dvija varna is that again…?
I mean, one example that often springs to mind – for me, anyway – is the celebrated Chanakya/Kautilya. Now, this is a Brahmin, everyone knows it. And yet … in reference to the comment of my associate’s interlocutor demanding “real leaders who aren’t trying to get themselves ahead” … observe what he does.
It is true that Chanakya’s efforts to, effectively, get the Mauryan Empire rolling *could* be viewed as a rather … massive scale revenge gambit; and that’s, well, I find that rather amusing and appropriate as well.
But the fact is – what he did, was he informed and educated and *guided* Chandragupta, etc. [and, through his writings, subsequent generations of rulers, also … even, potentially, into the modern age, perhaps – we’ll see how things play out]; with the intermediate result that a particular Kshatriya ‘mighty man’ wound up overthrowing what had gone before, and setting up a very large, and pretty impressive imperial state in the places of its predicates. And in the longer-term [an ‘end’, insofar as historical circumstances can be said to have such things, Pralaya Pending, of course], of replacing what are asserted to be morally iniquitous or otherwise demonstrably deficient polities, with a greater and more enlightened rule.
Which, of course, also meant ending the reign of the Nanda Empire whose ruler had so grievously wronged Chanakya in the first place.
You may or may not view this as Chanakya “trying to get himself ahead”; but I view it as being a “real leader”, quite prepared to bring other people with him, empower others to do what was necessary to be done, and reshape the world around him, while not winding up simply a slave to the trappings of prestige or whathaveyou. After all, it was not Chanakya who became the First Emperor of the Maurya – even if he did provide so much of the thinking and the guidance, the moral authority via which its rulership would resultingly be carried out. Which does not at all mean that Chandragupta was not, himself, a man who ruled in strength.
“What the world needs” may or may not be “strong men”. Personally, i would have phrased it *very* differently. Indeed, *veer-y* differently.
What the world needs is *righteous* men.
And from there, strength shall flow.
Remember always: we are not ‘right’ merely because we are ‘mighty’ – we are *mighty* *because* we are *right*;
it shall be a day of lamentation indeed should the reverse become the credo.
And in point of fact, that’s a pretty large portion of what the Current Yuga is supposed to have as part and parcel of its slide into iniquity, isn’t it?
Part of the thing, i suspect, is that the idea of a “leader”, has come to mean somebody who is, as George W. Bush once put it, “the decider”. And yes, in a certain sense, this is not entirely inaccurate.
But in truth, what we are seeking here, is not somebody who is struggling tooth and nail to get to ‘the top’ , and then dragging everybody with his own , potentially rather capricious whims, *just because* he can.
Quite the contrary.
What we are *seeking*, in actuality, is not a “leader” (particularly in this petty, narrow sense) …. or at least, not *just* a leader.
What we are seeking is one who can and will be *lead*.
Which may sound strange, but then you recall my ongoing series of observations around the Socratic Dialogue of Euthyphro [borrowed and expanded/embellished upon from the initial insights of a colleague of the Abendland GLORIOUS #AdminCaste].
Basically, the idea is, we need those in charge to be guided by principle .
Otherwise, we have not established a Dharmarajya. We have established some sort of despotism.
To phrase it another way – the insistent focus upon finding a ‘strong leader’, is to confuse the ‘means’ for the ‘ends’; and the ‘process’ for the ‘ignition’ and ‘desired-for outcome’.
Oh, and before i forget, there’s a maxim of Tagore’s that is relevant to what i was saying earlier about Chanakya/Kautilya:
“that the stars themselves are not afraid to appear like fireflies.”
ANYWAY – ETYMOLOGY TIME
Where i’m going to start with this … is actually somewhere very different to where you’d presumably think.
There’s a term which, while it is not a linguistic cognate, is roughly equivalent to ‘Dharma’, in ancient Greek – Dikaiosune. Means, somewhat like “Righteousness”. [Interestingly, although less obviously relevant to what I am attempting to illustrate here, is the actual Ancient Greek term chosen by a subsequent Mauryan ruler, Ashoka, to render Dharma in that language – ‘Eusebia’, meaning ‘piety’, ‘reverence’.]
Now, why i’m bringing this up here, is because it’s related also to the Greek word “Dike”, which means, more simply, “Justice” … and especially [for reasons we shall shortly soon see], in the sense of justice in a law-court, or other legal proceeding.
Where I’m going with this … is that “Dike” [and thence “Dikaiosune”] descends from a Proto-Indo-European particle: Deyk, which means, more specifically “to point out”.
You *could* therefore read the “Dike” above as referring to acts of “accusing”, but i’m not sure that that quite holds. As instead, it should more properly be viewed as “pointing out the facts, pointing out the law [which is, itself, after a sort, a fact .. indeed, in supernal/metaphysical terms, the Law .. or er .. The Lore , you might say [thank-you, Terry Pratchett], is the grund-norm and sine qua non Fact , insofar as Rta goes, anyway] : ‘showing what is Right’.
[oddly enough, “Revenge’ derives from the same Deyk particle, and less surprisingly, so does *Teach*.] [Oh, and “Toe’, but uh … with possible reference to the Krishnaites who may be about, we’re not going to get into either an arse-kicking contest or a booting you into salvation exercise.]
Now, “Duce”, “Dux”, “Duke”, theoretically, is from a related but different PIE particle – “Dewk” .. but I suspect rather strongly that it is not at all coincidental just how close the “Dewk” root is to the “Deyk” one. And there’s probably also a “Deywos” thought in there somewhere as well. FOR ANOTHER TIME …
“Dictator”, however, *is* from the same root – Deyk.
Get where I’m going with this?
The “strong man”, the “Real Leaders” you are after … their job is not to make up stuff and then beat it into happening …
Their job is *actually*, to take direction, to point out to the rest of us, and *show* us [through doing, hearing, saying, empowering, ruling [in a legal or political sense – subtle difference, that] ] from the underlying Dharma … and then I suppose, “pull” us along in its direction [this is, actually, what that “Dewk” particle in PIE is actually referencing -the pulling along with/behind you.].
What is a good leader, then? One who knows where to look, and where to point, and what to point out, and how to speak [‘dico’, ‘dicere’ in Latin – where the Dictator bit comes from] , to get it more broadly broadcast, and people pulling along *with* him, to drag the rest of reality in train.
Now, on to my interlocutor’s “what makes a kshatriya given etymological and epistemological meaning pls” question : …
Kshatriya, that Varna is the *arms* of the Purusha model of society; and yes, they do ‘rule’, in a sense. Although what is perhaps more close to the mark is to think of them as, in this case and context, the “Long Arm of the Law” – Law, here, meant in a rather grander sense, akin to what i was saying about “Lore” earlier. That is to say, Order. In the Supernally emanated, Divinely mandated sense. When thinks are functioning properly and well, at any rate.
And to try and ‘take back’ the situation *to* that ideal, when it’s not.
The idea that “leader” means “guy in charge”, is … both accurate and completely missing the point.
As we have said, “Despot” is *not* what it (should) mean. But rather, “ruler”, as in “one who is upholding the Rules” .
In a way, this therefore makes them not the sovereignty caste ….. as in, not the ultimate source of sovereignty … but rather amongst the foremost *servants* of the *actual* chief/principle/principal. If you see what I did there.
[this is also, not coincidentally, why yon Kshatriyas are *supposed* to be listening to the counsel of Brahmins. And, to be sure, perhaps surprisingly often, the other way around, also. ]
Now, the etymology, while it’s a bit .. hazy, is actually pretty interesting, here. I seem to recall, awhile back, seeing something suggesting that the terms “Kshatriya” and “rule” , were somewhat related, but I am quite likely over-conflating something else, so we’ll stick to what is more easily demonstrated.
In *theory*, Kshatriya itself derives ultimately from a PIE particle – “Tek” … which has the meanings of ‘taking’ … but also, to ‘receive’.
Now, this is interesting, because while it *does* strongly show the way in which that “if things are out of kilter, take the situation back” angle i was propounding earlier, as well as the “strong arm of the law” angle , which *has* power …. it *also* shows, I would contend, the importance of “taking” , in that receptive sense, of direction and guidance. And, funnily enough, in at least two European languages that I can think of, the descendant-terms from this “Tek” particle have come to include verbs meaning “to be silent”. Perhaps implicitly *to listen* [goes with the ‘to receive’]. The latter of which is very much in accordance with what I am endeavouring to get across here – that it is the role of these “real leaders”, to *listen* and *perceive* the higher principles which *must*, by necessity, underpin their reigns and their realms.
And also, not at all coincidentally, to listen to the rest of the ‘body’ that is society, to its needs and its sensory input from the particular areas which those parts are underlyingly concerned with. In an older age, this was at least partially entailed in the concept of the ‘chain of being’ – which went *both ways* [i.e. ‘up’ and ‘down’], and also mandated the long-forgotten concept by many of our present-day elites of “Noblesse Oblige”. This is partially why – in Indo-European terms, at least – the terms for ‘leadership of a people’ have often tended to be both distinct from the terms for ‘ownership of a slave’, as well as closely related to the terms for “Fatherhood’. It is a not-very-subtle, by vitally important difference!
[And we can see ample examples from history of what happens when power is first sought and then exercised, without a sense of ‘responsibility’ as a simple ‘top-down’ activity of domination… To return to our Caturvarna-Purusha model of Society, in such scenarios, it is generally the case that one or perhaps more than one of the ‘body-parts’ has decided that as it is ‘dominant’, that it can therefore exist almost solipsistically, maltreating and perhaps even seeking to sever itself from its fellow-corporealm constituents. A cursory examination, however, of one of the more *prominent* salient instances of such a phenomenon – the lead-up to the French Revolution of 1789 onwards – demonstrates most amply that it is very difficult indeed for a ‘head’ to survive sans body. Similarly, with deference to various explanations of the Revolution’s causation, as well as the actual organistic identifications of the Varnas – so, too, can be said of such instances wherein the digestive tract has declared itself the *real* power in the land. The end result of this, perhaps, would be ‘disembowelment’.]
Speaking of these reciprocal bonds which form the cohesion (indeed, the nervous system) of a community, there is another, closely related PIE term of subtly different inflection, “Tek” … which effectively means “to weave” – and you can see instantly how this directly pertains to the notion of the ‘social fabric’, bringing together strands to make a whole [there’s a fasces figurative illustration there somewhere .. although with a rope, a tapestry, perhaps; also a garment, but we are not going to get into either the Old Norse “Grimr” figurative interpolation [which can mean directly a ‘hood’, a ‘mask’ – but also, being the ‘face’ of a tribe] , or me overextending the metaphor with regard to washing the garment and repairing it rather than just wearing the mantle of rulership because it looks pretty flash … ].
This is further reflected in another area, which I explored in greater depth if not detail in the portion of our GHOST DIVISION series covering the concept of “Vratya”, “Vrata” … the notion of “words” being what bind together a nation, indeed also reality itself.
A lord can be one who *has* the Words [of power] [whether metaphysical or in legal document form] … , and the Words, of fealty, of those about him … and presides over them Words, whether priestly [Hotr] , or legalistic, or again metaphysical , which binds all together.
This pattern is also replicated on a much grander scale in particular strands of Hindu metaphysics, which hold that the very universe itself is, in a few senses, made up of Words, of threads, and of rules, all ‘woven together’ into a cohesive whole that’s suspended from on high. Indeed, can be thought of very much as a “fabric” in and (although perhaps not ‘of’ itself) – hence several of the interpolations of the term “Maya”; as well as, for that matter, illustrations such as the concept of Indra’s Net or Indra’s Web as a temporo-spatial diagrammatic for the ‘ripple effect’ of our actions out through both space and time.
‘as below, so above’, as applies kingship and cosmogony/cosmology, I suppose
Now, the notion of a ruler who is intimately bound up with these ‘ties,’ these ‘strands’, these ‘branches’, these ‘threads’ of morality and even (especially) of Reality Itself, is expressed in Sanskrit in a single word: Chakravartin.
This is a term germane to the conversation for two reasons.
First, because there’s a rather keen linkage with the idea of the restoration of righteous/positive rule across an impressively broad area [this is one of the underpinnnigs for the term – “one whose wheels are in motion”, meaning one who can go basically anywhere because their suzerainty is paramount and untramelled, unchallenged. c.f also how the Ashvamedha horse-sacrifice ritual works]. So if we are speaking about ‘strong men’, ‘real leaders’, who engage in a sort of positively construed revanchism and resurrection of suzerainty against ‘mere anarchy’ which has been loosed upon the world … then there is a certain appeal to the term on this basis alone.
Yet it goes deeper, and far more fundamentally significant than that. The notion that the Chakravartin, is *also* one who, well, their wheel is in motion … about the central Axis Mundi , the ‘chariot-axle’ [as it is referred to in various hymnals in both the RigVeda & AtharvaVeda], which well-fits [Sukha], and which is ultimately, in a yet-more supernal sense, Dharma Itself. [I would personally add a Shakta skein of interpretation here, concerning said Axis as also having expression beyond-universe .. or, rather, the other way around – that the ‘expression’, the ’emanation’, the ‘manifestation’ is what is taking place *in*-universe, with the actual, salient existence of this grund-norm, fundamental truth and underpinning causation and maximal absolute, being very much *beyond* the universe-at-large in its scale, scope, and quality. AdiParaShakti *as* Rta, you see]
A rule, in other words again, based on, radiating out from, and ‘operationalizing’ [i.e. putting the wheel into motion, as well as the axle’s axial-line and spin] , that fundamental cosmological principle/principal.
The converse approach, however, wherein the human leader seeks to make himself the ‘axle’ in this cosmological, as well as political-metaphysical model, is not Sukha. Indeed, it is the opposite – Dukkha. ‘Ill-fitting’. ‘Wrong’, and having consequent implications for all the vehicle (whether of community or of state or of cosmos (in world-view, at least) entire) which thusly relies upon the turning of it in order to keep the whole thing suspended, much less ‘in motion’.
At best, such a situation may perhaps be compared to the situation wherein a vehicle breaks down, and its occupants have to get out and push. Occasionally lamentably necessary, although quite a difficult thing in the case of serious axial issues. And not something that can or should be sustained for any great length of time. After all, even the mightiest of strong-men who can pull trains along tracks, shall eventually overstrain themselves and do a serious injury should they attempt to keep it up beyond a brief stretch. No matter how impressive to lesser-seeming men and subordinates it might otherwise be in the interim.
More likely, it is something even more worrisome and self-defeating. A kind of bizarre situation wherein despite there being two wheels on either side of the chariot, there’s no actual single axial between them – and instead, some pretentiously arrogant figure running along between them, grasping mountings set one at the center of each wheel, attempting to *be* the axle himself. Sure, we all marvel at his ambition and his ability to indulge in such fanciful pursuits … but it is not ideal, the whole thing will be rendered inoperable rather quickly, and especially once he’s gone, the various parts will be rent asunder.
Much better, much easier, and much more overarchingly useful for the mighty man whose chariot it is (as well as all the rest of us who may happen perchance to be riding within it), to be focused instead … not upon being some integral part of the chariot, but upon driving and maintaining it, instead.
There may also be a potential alignment of the above metaphorical rumination with the sad fate of Karna in the Mahabharat, perhaps – killed while attempting to hold his chariot aloft and get it unstuck, following the disunity and ‘Dukkha’ interrelationships between Karna and his appointed charioteer, King Shalya.
Although I shall have to defer to the expertise of others more versed with that particular text and relevant area of mythotheology rather than further explicate it myself.
In any case, there are a few thoughts upon an often left undiscussed angle on Indo-European leadership. Often, and understandably so, we tend to focus upon something of the ‘pop-cultural’ propelled conception of an Indo-European chieftain or other leader, especially of significant rank and standing, as being the untrammeled and completely unfettered absolute sovereign of his (self-)appointed domain. And certainly, there have been various occasions and individuals wherein exactly that sort of thinking has become the actual ‘self-perception’ in the situation. Usually followed not too long after by something going horribly wrong as the whole thing starts to shake itself apart again in pursuit of a more enduring re-equilibrium that’s actually more stable than plenipotentiary absolutism. One could argue that the personal fate of Julius Caesar, the political fate of Tito’s Yugoslavia, and the potent down-stream consequences of Louis XIV’s interior approach, demonstrate exactly this trend-line in action.
Although perhaps as something of a counterpoint, Emperor Napoleon I – a man whomst no lesser a personage than Hegel seemed to revere as a Chakravartin-like figure – while *on paper* might appear something of a furtherance of the above typology, I would argue is in fact something of a subversion. Insofar as the actual and enduring results of Napoleonism are still being felt, still conditioning, quite across the continent of Europe and beyond – in legal codes and systems of governance, in the humanities, in military thought, and even, it may fairly be said, the modern idea of France Herself. But that is, at least partially, because – to my admittedly rather biased perspective (it is a long story), Napoleon represented not so much a ‘subversion’ of the Revolution, but rather its Apex, its Apotheosis, its Avatar. Although even here, there is a potential counter-to-the-counterpoint to be found, insofar as the fluctuating vicissitudes of Napoleon’s relationship with Josephine appear to have had a discernible detrimental impact upon his generalship, thus somewhat undercutting the notion of the Emperor as an *entirely* transcendental ideal, and showing once again the immense stresses and the strains which inevitably occur when a man – no matter how magnificent – becomes the axis about which all else in the realm turns.
But the properly pious Indo-European leader is something else entirely, than this ‘little tin god on wheels’ stereotype which nevertheless seems to continually fire the popular imagination when we speak of Barbarian kings and (would-be) world-conquering Emperors. And not least because there’s something of an innate ‘selection-bias’ at play in the various Indo-European mythological corpuses seemingly custom-designed to weed out the leaders who are unwilling or flat-out incapable of discerning that they are not, in fact, the actual and enduring center of everything, sans any qualification or greater deference to the on high. One of the most fatal positions [if not for one’s self, then certainly for many if not most of those around one] in all of Greek mythology must surly be that of the Monarch or other leadership figure who forgets themselves, forgets their proper and appointed place, presumes they’re *absolutely* powerful, and thus disrespects the implicit dictates of Dikaiosune. As Euripides, from memory, may have put it – those whom the Gods would destroy, They first make arrogant. Another example which springs instantly to mind, concerns Sri Ravana, the King of Lanka, and antagonist of the Ramayana – a great ruler, by all accounts, at least as applied the field of domestic administration of his kingdom … but one whose fundamental and never-entirely-ameliorated flaws in these relevant personal (and pointedly prideful/self-perceptive) regards, see him undone and an appreciable portion of his kingdom on fire afore his death. And then there is the case of Daksha, the famed one-time father-in-law of Lord Shiva, whose attempted horse-sacrifice ritual caused him a rather significant loss of face …. along with the rest of his head, albeit somewhat temporarily. [Note: my supposition regarding the incidence of Daksha, are that the intended carrying out of the ritual in question, with almost all the Gods and Goddesses, amongst many other figures of potency present, upon a spur of Meru – was with the underlying purpose of establishing Daksha’s paramount sovereignty over the universe entire, setting himself up as ‘Chakravartin’ in that first sense aforementioned. And thus inviting the wrath of the *real* Ishvara – God-Emperor – of All Creation]; or Geirroth, the hapless antagonist of the Grimnismal.
Arrayed against this, I would point towards several figures as luminary examples of far more ‘proper’, and ultimately, successful conduct. The first of which being, even though it might be somewhat cliche to cite him in such a context, the Roman figure of Cincinnatus – relevant here, due to his most famous action. That of being called from his plow to serve the Roman state as its Dictator, in response to an impending crisis, and then fairly immediately upon the crisis’s successful resolution at his hand, relinquishing these quite literally dictatorial powers [also, recall, the shared etymology of ‘Dictator’ with ‘Dike’ – PIE: ‘Deyk’] in order to return to his quiet, country life of semi-retirement. Now, the actual facts of the story are a bit more complex than that, as is regrettably often the case when a real-life historical figure finds their deeds transsubstantiated into an enduring moral allegory for the ages. But we’ll leave that aside for now.
The second and third, are two men who were near contemporaries of one another; and who, despite ultimately ascending to rule – and to create Great Powers almost from whole-cloth, given the states and situations of the respective kingdoms which they started out with – at near opposite extremes of Eurasia, actually have a potentially surprising degree of coterminity. King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden, and Chhatrapati ShivaJi of the Marathas. I shall save a more in-depth comparison for another time; but suffice to say, in each case, these were men who were very much cognizant of the fact they served the cause of a Higher Power, and saw it as their calling to make safe the world for Its re-immanentized presence. Whether Northern European religious developments in the lands of the former Holy Roman Empire; or Hindu Rashtra upon the Subcontinent [the latter, in particular being a *directly mandated* mission commanded of ShivaJi by the Goddess Herself]. They both also were given what might be colloquially referred to as ‘magic swords’, but that is, again, another story for another time. Now, in both cases, it was *precisely because of* their ‘pointing upwards’ [there’s that meaning/rendering for ‘Deyk, ‘Dike’ again] that they ruled well, and presided over the (re-)foundations of far more *resonant*, *enduring* [although sadly, in neither case, ultimately permanent or entirely indomitable] bastions of their values here upon this earth. Something which I suspect would have been functionally impossible, in either case, if the “value” in question had merely been their own glory and grandeur. ‘Sic transit gloria mundi’, indeed.
So what does this mean? In the context of attempting to talk about ‘pre-Modern’, Mythic/Mytho-Religious, and/or ancient/historically sourced approaches to the travails of the current age, we often seem to find any number of people indulging in one of two things. Either ‘lazy thinking’, misinformed conceptions, or other such less-intentionally derived errors, all of which have the general effect of attempting to make simplistic non-solutions like “we need more Strong Men” [whatever that might mean, either in the utterer’s head or in practice and practical terms] a more prominent part of the conversation … or we have more deliberately insidious approaches, which seek to deliberately cultivate this fundamentally fake concept of The Past, and pre-Modern, and/or Myth(o-Religious) modes of being as being basically anarchistic, libertarian – libertarianism with brute-force imposition characteristics (rather than the usual mere brute stupidity) and libertine personal dispositions for those who’ve designated themselves as “In Charge”, and “The Upper Caste” [often in exactly those terms. It continually boggles the mind just how many people who’re apparently in favour of imposing a highly stratified ‘caste’ structure [note that I did *not* say Varna system there], somehow axiomatically believe that they’d be *on top* in such a scenario in real life]. And who are therefore, in this lattermost case, approaching their thoughts and seemingly deliberately fostered mistaken impressions around “Leadership” as basically some kind of across-the-whole-of-society scale exercise in ‘wish fulfillment’, or something.
The vital reminder that the *actual* and *proper* positioning of the ‘rule’ contingent of the corpus corporealm , is as one ‘organ’ amid several, and vitally interdependent with others … as well as *guided* by and immersed in, the necessary Order(s) from Above … is therefore a handy refutation of both sets of inadequacies.
As well as being, in my opinion at least, quite a valid and valuable ‘mirror’ to hold up to the contemporary approaches we see in the politics and other arenas unfolding about us, in the world around us *outside* of the mythosphere, here today. Only, the difference here with most ordinary mirrors – is that it is not inside the mirror, this time, that everything seems to be ‘the wrong way around’ and lacking in depth and reality.
Perhaps somebody should ‘point’ that out. “