By Peter Case, Heather Höpfl, Hugo Letiche (eds.)
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Additional resources for Belief and Organization
There are no gods here; it is a radically secular tradition that we explore. But the argument is not atheist; belief and answers, convictions and crises simply are all defined in purely human terms. We deal here with human dilemmas, and with human intellectual and spiritual means. We examine philosophy as activity; as a way of life, and as an avenue to a better life. One does not just learn or understand philosophy, one has to perform it. Pierre Hadot (1995, 1998, 2001, 2004, 2008a, 2008b) and Michel Foucault play the main roles in our exploration.
How? First let us recognize that rituals are not practices derived from the representations of spiritual forces and conceptions in the myths. Instead rituals generate the myths. Anthropologist Michael Taussig (1997) has shown, in The Magic of the State, how the rituals that came to be performed on Cerro de María Lionza in Venezuela, especially after 1950, progressively came to name and invoke, and then link together into narratives a certain María Lionza, depicted riding a tapir, whose deeds are differently described and indeed whose very name varies in different narratives, and long-forgotten pre-Columbian deities depicted as North American Plains Indians, Christian saints and political figures, Belief 21 especially Simon Bolivar.
Does not depend on you, and should be regarded as indifferent. If you step back far enough, you realize that everything happens thanks to the unfolding of cosmic laws. You can do nothing about what does not depend upon you; you can only accept fate and even love it, as it occurs. As a rock standing constantly in front of a stormy tide, you constantly and consistently do what you feel is right, focusing on what depends on you. As a Stoic, you are taught to concentrate on every moment, scrutinizing it in your reasoning, as you distinguish between what depends and does not depend on you.