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(Philosophy 58, April 13th, 195- -- )

[tape interruption]

... to give you a kind of finishing touch to the chapter of the empire -- on the empires. So we have treated, as the French call it, "les clans et -- et les empires." There is a famous book in -- in French, Des Clans aux Empires, from the tribes to the empires. And we have treated the tribes and the empires as very different from what you generally think. There is no evolution. There is no gradual development from the tribe to the empire, but there is a sharp dialectics, a complete contrast. Those people who kept migrating over the earth, and those people who decided to settle are two different men. We can trace their -- the origin of the new race of settlers to 3000 B.C. and we can follow the first people who spoke with eff- -- efficacy to a -- let me say 7000 B.C. to this -- todays, or perhaps 5000 B.C. only -- we may trace the origin of human speech. All the rest, what the prehistorians sell you -- as this infinite, long age of history doesn't exist. That's -- is the bad conscience of the people who have to replace God by millions of years.

But we have learned that indeed the tribes made a decision to fight nature, by overcoming the ef- -- effects of death. The ancestor cult means that the grave, the funeral, the burial, the totem pole all allow people to continue, despite the death of one link in the generations. And we said that the problem of the tribe is this victory over death. And the formula, which I recommend to you for the whole tribal order, which you still find in the weaklings of today, is that in the tribal or generative order of blood relations, the dead speak to the living. I told you that here was a president of Dartmouth College who couldn't deliver a speech without feeling the eyes of his predecessor pinned on him. That is the rule of the tribe: that the ancestors look down on you. And there is a perpetual and eternal truth in this: the past does direct our steps, and we owe this duty to listen to what we have been told. So the tribes, gentlemen, have done something which cannot be forgotten, and which originates every day. Put any group in the position of having to migrate -- take the Mennonites, or take the Quakers, and we again have this same problem. And as you know, the Quakers in this country had to recognize the ancestral Quakerism against all their religious tenets. It is inexplicable for a Quaker, theoretically or theologically, that his son should be a Quaker. And yet he is, because the power of the good life lived by the ancestor prevails, even over their theology which said that every Christian should become a Christian himself, you see, without heredity. But you move, like the Quakers, from country to country, and immediately you have to connect, because otherwise the countries offering only contrast, you have -- would have no continuity,

no meaning, no place in history.

So the tribes, gentlemen, make the dead speak to the living. In the empire, we found an opposite arrangement. I have to remind you of this, because we want to take today a step forward -- beyond the two: tribe and empire. In the empire, the heavens speak to the earth. The sun and the moon and the stars reveal the destiny of man on this earth. And the ruler on this earth is a double star, he who connects Heaven and earth, you remember. And the crown of the ruler of the king, these are the rays of the sun, and of the stars which reach him and direct his steps. And from there on, he is able to direct your steps. Every man's, every settler's in the man, and the proclamation on New Year's days of the emperor of China -- directed the steps of 400 million people, day after day for 4,000 years -- 3,000 years I should say, down to 1911. That's a great order, and was bought for one little price: no migration, staying put. Under this condition, we saw that you could have division of labor, you could have the arts and the crafts. You could have classes, and castes, and buildings, temples, palaces, jewels, {the highest} development of any technique ever known. Loads of pillars, and columns, and obelisks, and pyramids piled up in such a way as we even cannot improve on it. And we also learn from these two chapters, gentlemen, that every one of these orders of life is perfect. You cannot do better than the masks of the tribe. If you ever have seen any of these masks, we cannot invent any better ones like the spider, or the eagle, or the lion's head, and carved out on those masks of a Negro tribe, or of an Indian tribe. And we cannot do better than the pyramids of Egypt, or the lion gates of Mycenae. That is perfect. Every one -- two, where the heart is, and where man's god is, he really is insuperable.

Now we come to the two orders, gentlemen, of antiquity on which we stand. The New Testament, as you say, says that today the partition between Jews and Greeks is finished. So they must have understood that the whole ancient world which Christ came to change, or to redeem, there was contained in these two groups of which we hadn't to say a word so far. Who has gotten my -- received my postal card? And did you -- did you -- were you able to tell anybody else?


Ah-ha. I thought so. So, I put on -- all these cards, you see, with the faint hope of fulfillment that they should tell others. Who has told anybody else? One of you.


That's your ancestor-worship. I am dead, but you don't obey me, anyway.

I thought that if I sent out 10 postal cards with the demand to tell the others, that at least five of you would -- would be willing to tell one other. Then you would have 15 Bibles today here in class. Now we have only at best five.

Gentlemen, I can't work with you this way. You think it's all just a joke, because you are not interested in -- in this stuff -- material, in the thing itself, but only perhaps in me, or wise- -- in the jokes I crack. I mean, you are -- behave like 11-year-old boys. Not one of you feeling when you write such {a ported}, it is for the rest of the class that you do it, when you receive a post card that you have to go out of your way and to tell somebody else. Do you think I write -- this post card in -- for nothing? You still will not induce me to treat you as boys. I shall go on treating you as grown-up people, even if at the end, you will wake up to the fact that you didn't deserve it.

Gentlemen, the Jews and the Greeks defied both tribe and empire, or you may say inherit both and do something different with these two great institutions. As you know, the Jews have a country, like the Egyptians. They even have a temple, the Temple of Solomon. But they have 12 tribes, as the tribes of old. And yet everybody knows that the Jews are not just a tribe and not just a country, but that they are something third, something disagreeable, something hated, but something very different. They are the Jews. They are Israel. And they have left Egypt, the fleshpots of Egypt, the pharaohs, and they have left the tribal order. The Bible is written around this double fact that Israel is neither a tribe, nor an empire, nor a kingdom, but is something third. What is it? Gentlemen, in Abraham and in Moses, you have the two protests against the previous world. We can state today with great confidence that Judaism came into existence when the Great Year of the Egyptians had returned for once in 1320, and when therefore the cycle of such an eternal settlement had exhausted its ultimate possibilities. In other words, gentlemen, people don't revolutionize the world without having exhausted usually all means of peaceful change. Reform of the old order is of course the obvious, as long as you can hope for it. The Russians tried from 1825 to 1905 to reform their government. And only after this didn't work, in the sec- -- first World War, did they overthrow czarism for good. You must understand the slow process of revolution in order to appreciate a genuine revolution. This has nothing to do with what you call revolution in South America. That's not a revolution at all. That's just disorder or anarchy.

But the great events in human history, gentlemen, are very economical. And Israel and Moses came into being only after every potential reform within the realm of Egypt had been tried.

In the year 1357, 40 years before this great event of the return of Sirius to the same place in the sky after 1460 years could be expected, the -- a king of Egypt

tried to go to the limit of reform. This man is quite well known in this world, although -- most -- by mere sensational books, as Echnaton, the ruler of Egypt, Amenhophis IV. Echnaton -- E-c-h-n-a-t-o-n. He is the Kerensky of the Mosaic Revolution. Mr. Kerensky -- you do not understand this? Mr. Kerensky tried to reform Russia by introducing parliamentary regime, and by behaving like a good Frenchman of 1789. Mr. Kerensky is still in this country and very much worshiped by the people who hate the Bolsheviks. But you do not understand the depths of the change that the Russians had to make in order to get rid of the czaristic regime. Mr. Kerensky, whom I think -- respect as an excellent fellow, ex- -- personally excellent man, is one of these people who, like Mirabeau of the French Revolution, think that they can do a little reform, and not all. It would be like having the British, you see, reform their kingship without beheading Charles I. Horace Walpole always had the Magna Carta and the death warrant of Charles I on his -- the wall of his room in the 18th century. Horace Walpole, a famous lord and -- as you may know, because he -- he knew that the beheading of the king was necessary, indispensable condition for introducing aristocracy in England.

Now, you must compare these events, these actions, if you want to understand Moses' tremendous undertaking. Everything had been tried in Egypt. Echnaton had said, "I wish to give up the superstition of myself being Horus, and having to hurry from the South to the North, as you remember, you see, the basis of all the Egyptian creation, being that one rule could unite these thousand miles from north -- south to north. He went into exactly the middle of Egypt. Tel-ElAmarna, which again is for the journalists of Egyptology not known, is a place exactly in the middle of the River Nile, from the First Cataract to the estuary. That is, these surveyors of Egypt, being great geographers, had by that time been able to measure all the bends and knees of the River Nile, and had found that Tel-El-Amarna was located in the exact center of Egypt. And all empires love to have -- correct measurements and orientation. And their whole problem is orientation, to be the masters of the East, the South, the West, and the North. You remember? And therefore, this city of {El-Al-Armana}, just as Peking, had to be in the middle, as you -- the Chinese called themselves, the empire of the middle, you see, of the center.

Now Tel-El-Amarna was founded there by Echnaton, and he took an oath. Mind you, he took an oath that he would not budge from this place and its four -- outside its four sacred corners. He was so sure that by measuring right, he had brought the absolute harmony of the spheres down to earth, that the Heaven now was in compliance, you see, with all the conditions on earth and vice versa. And therefore, here he could sit and rule and tame the universe, without having to move against his enemies, or for -- to his subjects without any progress through his empire. It was the final, extreme idea of settlement. Even the throne

of the empire now was definite, you see. Here he would sit and not budge, like a Buddha, or like Montezuma who also, as you you know, did not budge, did not move when Pizarro -- Cortez attacked him, because here he was, the center of things himself. You can hardly understand the conviction of these people that, by finding the right point, the right cardinal point in the middle of the universe, you see, they would be able to be as stable as the firmament. And the word "firmament" shows you how these people found that the stable thing was up there, and the earth was the transient and movable thing, and that we had to try to bring the firmament, you see, confirmatingly down to earth, by confirming it.

Well, this oath of Mr. Echnaton had very sad consequences for the empire. The enemies must have heard of it. And they came in from all corners. And here was Echnaton, marooned in the middle. And if he didn't want to perjure himself, he had to stay there. He did send his generals, but he couldn't appear in person. So you can imagine that the Tel-El-Amarna reform was a total catastrophe for Egypt. And the next emperor, the next pharaoh who came -- took over after his death, or perhaps his dislocation, his rebellion, called himself "Horus" again, very important. This victorious general who dethroned pharaoh, Amenhophis, pharaoh Echnaton in Tel-El-Amarna, went back to Thebes, to the older capital of Egypt, took immediately upon himself the old name of Horus, the falcon-emperor, the real moving double-star of Egypt. The idea of putting the empire -- emperor -- -pire totally under the heavens had failed. The supernatural ruler was still nat- -- necessary to make the connection between Heaven and earth. And he had to be left free. This fate of the Egyptian pharaoh has led the famous philosopher Hegel -- Hegel -- to the statement that in antiquity, one man at least had to be free, in every state, in every empire, you see. The ruler himself. You couldn't fetter him totally. He, when an enemy was announced, had after all go out and campaign. And this emperor who fettered himself, you see, as we did with our -- neutrality legislation, you see, under Mr. -- Borah in the '30s, was like a blind giant fettering himself. That's the best you can say of America. That's the best you can say of Egypt, a blind giant fettering himself, either by prohibition, or by neutrality legislation, or by investigations, or what-not. Always disenabling oneself. That is the tendency of these tremendous bodies of men. The fear of one's own freedom.

Very strange. But it breaks down. It cannot be done. It is impossible to forbid the United States to be a world power. And by and large, this is what it amounted to, when Echnaton took an oath and said, "I'll sit here. And Heaven is a- -- with, I mean, harmony with the earth. I'll never move." The future was abolished this way. Nothing could ever happen, you see. Everything was predictable, the -- like the business cycle, you see. It would come and go. Seven lean years, and seven fat years. That's the business cycle. That comes from Egypt. Boom and bust. And -- that much the pharaonic tradition knew. There were good harvests

and poor harvests, rich and -- richness and -- poverty. All that they knew. But they didn't know anything {surprising}. They didn't know that there could be a race suddenly that wanted to be poor, like the Russians, that had no interest in {wealth}. That's beyond the American and the -- any imperial horizon, gentlemen. The empires lived by the high standard of living. And therefore they very soon ceased to live, because you cannot live by the standard of living. There is no standard of living. Today it's one and tomorrow it's another. That doesn't -- is -- has no -- nothing to do with living.

This is very serious, gentlemen, because I assure you at this moment, no other country is so -- great -- very much in danger of going the way of the Egyptians, back from the Exodus to the Sinai and the Ten Commandments than this country. It's a great temptation to live in harmony with technological processes, which you can manipulate. That's exactly what they did with the astronomical processes. Gentlemen, if you have productivity, it's exactly what the Egyptians said when they knew when the flood came, and when the ground had to be tilled, and when the seed had to be put down, and when the harvest had to be brought in, and how to feed the unemployed during the three months from the stores of Egypt, you see, when they could not live in their little garden huts in the middle of the river, because the flood was there, and they had to move up to the desert. This they mastered. We master this, too. We can produce -- we can outproduce anybody, as you know. But the problems of life are not the -- only the problems of production. There are other problems. And they all -- most unpredictable and unforeseen. And they demand human freedom, and they -- you can't deal with them by legislation in advance, forbidding the president or forbidding the people to -- travel around the world and make for good will, keeping all the passports locked up in the State Department. This is a typical gesture of Mrs. {Shipley,} you know the great dragon of -- you know, we have here dragons too in this country. The Chinese have dragons. The Egyptians. All these empires have tremendous symbols of power, in the form of cherubs, or dragons, you see, of the sphinx. They are all very similar. And we have Miss {Shipley}. You know who Miss {Shipley} is? She will have a monument. She is the lady who decides over the r- -- your right to visit another country.

That's the Egyptian problem. It is exactly the Egyptian problem, because what did the Jews? They said, "We leave Egypt without a passport." That's what they did. And they succeeded. That's the miracle of the founding of Israel, that they left Egypt without a passport. "Let my people go." You must remember The Green Pasture. Who has seen The Green Pasture? Only two? Oh, what a pity. Try to see it. It's a great play. Do you know what it is? Have you heard of it? "Let my people go."

Now. Gentlemen, the Jews said this cycle of the stars over Egypt can lead nowhere beyond Egypt. The empires have shown that they are finite, and that they cannot be identified with the future of humanity. The empire has reached its fulfillment. Tel-El-Amarna is proof that the best what an emperor of Egypt can do is to sit. Therefore, in Egypt, the present devours the future. The eternal cycle of boom and bust, of lean years and fat years, of the standard of living, of the flood, and the -- the cycle which the Bible mentions under Noah as the cyclical life of the agricultural humanity, this has reached its clear limitation because, gentlemen, where we live cyclical, we are dependent on the environment, on its climate, on its conditions of weather, and rainfall, and so on, and we are therefore unable to be masters of the whole globe. No global order can ever grow from such a -- a settlement, from such an -- empire, from such enthronization of a ruler over a set, certain district, a certain path of the universe. It remains partial. All the empires divide as much humanity as they have -- unite the tribes. Here you see the tragedy, gentlemen, of every piece of progress. If you do something beyond that which went before, you also are doomed to stick to this -- step forward, to this progress, if you can unite, as in China, a hundred tribes, or by perhaps 200 tribes as in China later, or if you unite all the tribes of the desert in Egypt, or in Babylonia, or the 12 tribes of Israel, you still cannot go beyond this act of uniting tribes. And you have not united the whole human race. The empire is then within its limitations, you see, not able to take any step to unite the empires. The unification of empires -- an empire of empires -- would need a new principle, which could not be the imperial principle of a visible throne in the middle of its little district, or universe, you see, or its -- within its orientation from east, north, south, and west; because on the globe, as we now know, but they didn't, there is no east, west, north, south of permanent orientation. This earth is created round. And in Chile, at this moment, they expect tremblingly the approach of winter. And in summer, as you know, you can ski there.

So the humanity, very early, gentlemen, long before Copernicus knew that we turned around the sun, knew that the earth was round, and that the antipodes, and the podes -- that is, the people on two sides of the globe -- could never be united -- unified by either the tribal principle of constant migration and constant warpath, nor by this withdrawal of the Egyptians behind their fortresses into this Tel-El-Amarna {center}, sitting there and saying, "Now, we can't budge. Obviously man must do better."

Now, gentlemen, what did Moses say, and what did Abraham say? Abraham in the Bible placed the role of the superseding power superseding the tribes. The fact that he doesn't slaughter Isaac is the great fact of Abraham's life. And the fact of Moses' life is that he, although he was a professor at Columbia University in Cairo, that he said, "The whole Ph.D. business is a hoax. They learn superstitions here at this university. And I have to take my -- a people -- " not "my

people," he probably was an Egyptian, and not even a Jew -- "take them out. I take them away. I create a group which is neither tribal nor imperial." How is it explai- -- -pressed in the Old Testament, gentlemen? The story of Abraham is quite well known. But nobody today, including all the rabbis of Israel care to understand the story. It is taken as a sacred story. The wonderful thing, as you know, about religious solemnity is that you don't have to understand a word. You just have a pious look and you go to Heaven straight away. It isn't that simple, gentlemen. The Bible is a secular book. It has neither to do with priests, nor popes, nor saints. It is written for you and me. It is written by secular people. It's a worldly book. As long as you read the Bible as a sacred book, you will never understand it. But it is the greatest book ever written, because it is true. And that's much more important than being sacred. The truth is sacred, gentlemen, but sacredness is not at all true. That's your mistake. And that's why you do -- you have no relation to the living god. And that's why you think you can debate God. Gentlemen, you cannot escape Him. But He's in this world. He's in this classroom, even; and He's not in the Church. And you have -- here, one boy who came to me the other day and said, "Couldn't it be enough to -- to call God infinity?" All such nonsense, you -- you see. That is, you little men want to give the name to the power that makes you, that names you. This is incredible. You haven't -- dare this -- such a boy, how he can be a student, I do not know. Anybody who thinks he can replace the name of God by some definition of his own little mind -- his sheep's mind, hasn't even -- doesn't even know -- what powers rule his own life. Doesn't he know that he is an American, that he is in danger of -- of siding with the fleshpots of Egypt, which you today call the standard of living? Gentlemen, put it down. Fleshpots of Egypt equals standard of living. That's exactly the same word. They meant flesh- -- by "fleshpots of Egypt" if you have everything your heart desires, and more. Certainly always more than you can pay for.

You are therefore, under -- in idolatry, and then you say, "Is there a God?" Well, gentlemen, it is the only -- the -- God is that power which can redeem you from your idolatry. Your god now is the standard of living. So obviously you must pray fervently that this cheap idol may be crashed, and crushed, and that you may come in contact with the powers of life that deserve worship.

Gentlemen, I have seen a debate of serious men in this college going on about the conditions of the peace after this war in 1945. I think I've told you the story, where with every condition we discussed, the answer was, "Impossible, because of our standard of living." That is, no peace for mankind possible, because the Americans idolize the -- their standard of living. This has happened to me in this college. Twenty-five people present at the Hanover Inn, at a lunch. And the luncheon had a high standard of living, but the mind had no high standard, at all. I have been present when people debated and said, "The necessary condi-

tions of peace cannot be met, because we must stick to our -- high standard of living." This is idolatry. That's exactly what the Egyptians did, what every empire did, they said, "We are at home here, the rest of the world, we -- let them -- let them rot." Very simple.

So just don't miss -- don't think that these Biblical expressions are dead. The escapist mind of modern idolaters always try, of course, a way of expressing it so that it cannot be found out, and not be recognized for what it is. But "standard of living" is exactly the "fleshpots of Egypt."

Now let us read the two chapters, first of Abraham's victory over his own tribalism, and then Moses' victory over his own academic degree, his own wisdom. Who has a Bible, kindly will open the book. It's the 22nd chapter of Genesis. Who has it? Will you read it?

And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, "Abraham." And he said, "Behold, here I am." And He said, "Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of."

And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took - - took two -- two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him. Then on the third day, Abraham lifted up his eyes and saw the place far -- afar off. And Abraham said unto his young men, "Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you." And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac, his son. And he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went, both of them, together. And Isaac spoke unto Abraham, his father, and said, "My father." And he said, "Here am I, my son." And he said, "Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" And Abraham said, "My son, God will provide Himself a lamb for a burnt offering." And they went, both of them, together. And they came to the place which God had told him of. Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar, upon the wood. And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. And the angel of the Lord called unto him out of Heaven, and said, "Abraham, Abraham." And he said, "Here am I." And he said, "Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him, for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me." And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold, behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns. And Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering, in the stead of his son. And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovajireh, as it is said to this day, in the mount of the Lord it shall

be seen.

And the angel of the Lord called unto Abraham out of Heaven a second time, and said, "By myself have I sworn, saith the Lord, for because thou has done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son, that in blessing I will bless thee; and in multiplying, I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the Heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; And in thy seed shall all nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice." So Abraham returned unto his young men ...

Ja. That's enough. Thank you. There it is. "In thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed" is the decisive sentence here. It's a very strange sentence. Nobody quite can interpret it to the full, to this day, can ever -- imagine the eloquence of this. "In thy seed, they shall be blessed." What does this mean? Very hard to understand. Obviously only -- obvious only in that the step is taken beyond all partial orders of the human race. It means the whole human race, but in connection with the step taken by Israel. That is, all the nations of the earth from now on can only be blessed if they have some part of the new principle of -- in the new principle of life, I might say, that is to be established by Abraham. As the pope has said, "Spiritually, we all are Semites." No nation on this earth can live today without having a part in the revelation of Abraham. Therefore, it's quite important, gentlemen, to analyze very soberly, and very scientifically, and objectively what has happened here in this one chapter, 22nd of Genesis. We know that the tribes have an order in which the past speaks to the present. And you'll remember that I also tried to open your eyes to the fact that the empires created an eternally smiling present. That you would like, by imitating the Chinese and keep smiling all the time. In this keep-smiling world, death is abolished, the future is abolished, because everything is predictable. Everything returns rhythmically, like the straw hat and the felt hat after Labor Day.

The eternal present, gentlemen, and the past are still lacking of one other time hence, which you accept grammatically and politically as natural. No American could live without having a relation to what? To the future. To a future that is essentially, totally even, different from past and present. This did not exist before Moses left Egypt, and before Abraham forewent the sacrifice of his son. Gentlemen, the Jews have created, as a strange, very unique group, a people that shall be created, as they say it, or as we pronounce -- call it as a pale expression by which you can go to sleep, by creating the messianic hope. But the Psalm says much more clearly, "I am the Lord of the people that will be, that is to be created." That's enormous. "I am the Lord of a people that is to be created." I think it's the 96th Psalm. I'm ready to give a dime to them -- to him who finds it in the Psalms. It's an incredible sentence. "I am the Lord of the people that is to be created." That is, not a people that is, or has been. In Europe, this sounds even

more queer than it sounds in this country, where people still have an idea of a melting pot, and some thin memory that there was a day when there were no Americans, that they all wanted to become a people, but they weren't yet one. To you, who are the lost generation, and the people, the second generation { } which has gone soft, it sounds natural that you are Americans, gentlemen. To Mr. McCarthy also. He appeals to the Americanism as he is. But the problem of the people of God has always been the people of -- as they have to be, as they have to become, as they shall be.

So you may say, gentlemen, and this is literally true: the Jews have invented the category of the future. They are so annoying, and so distasteful, because they are destructive of all idols of the day, and of all idols of the past. They do not worship, and they do not bend their knee to Baal.

Now wh- -- how is this expressed in these two acts of Abraham and Moses? As you know, Moses cannot see the promised land. And thereby he supersedes the connection of the civilized professor of philosophy to his country. He -- Moses is an Egyptian who, for 120 years, is a refugee from Egypt and is not allowed to enter Palestine. This is a tremendous story. As you know, the only Joshua -- his disciple is allowed to set his foot on the promised land. So Moses in his -- resignation foregoes the country, and Abraham foregoes the tribe. Because gentlemen, in the tribe, the first-born is slaughtered in order to give life to the father, to the chief. In -- this was true as late as the 11th century in Europe.

I'll tell you a story which illustrates the story of Abraham perhaps better than any other I know. The king of Sweden, who governed around the year 1070, was still a good Gentile, one of these appetizing Nordic race-men, and blond probably, stupid, and cruel. And he slaughtered his first-born son in order to add stature to his own vitality. And after a few years, he slaughtered his second son. And after a few years, he slaughtered his third son. And the story goes that when it came to the seventh son, who was a favorite with the people, they decided now that was too much. And they slew the old king, and made the seventh son king, and he became a Christian. And in this moment, the Swedes participated in the messianic hope. And in this moment, they didn't yet become Christians. It's a long travel. You always become Christian by becoming Jewish. The Old Testament is always the entrance -- door to the New Testament. You have to receive the law, before you receive grace. And therefore the first step of a nation that becomes Christian is very modest: that you forego the idols, and forego the ancestor-worship of the tribe and the empire. And that's what the Swedes did in 1070. And in Archbishop Lager- -- S”derblom and in Selma Lagerl”f, they proved that they now were real Christians, or in Strindberg, that it takes 900 years.

But in 1070, gentlemen -- that's a memorable date -- you have the duplication

of the event of Abraham not sacrificing his son for his own aggrandizement. He had the spirit, the inspiration, "I am called to do great things. I am not here for nothing. I have been spared. I have left my home country, the -- the empire of Ur." And the Bible is very -- very strangely concerned in making it clear that Abraham came from Ur, the most mighty city in Mesopotamia, and Moses came from Egypt, the other great empire. So that in the two -- the two lines, you see -- of the history of mankind should meet. The Bible is very proud that the ancestors of Israel are immunized by -- against the two greatest civilizations of their days. The Mesopotamian one, of the Euphrates-Tigris valley, and the civilization of the Nile. And you have to -- acquire such an immunity if you want to do something new. But in Abraham's case, the imperial strain of Ur is, so to speak -- it's a fact. The story begins, Abraham was a man who lived in Ur, you see, and left and went to Palestine. But the story then concentrates on his victory over his temptation of becoming a chieftain again. The two ways are -- were only open at that time. You either founded a city and became a pharaoh, like, you see, god-priest, or priest-god, or priest-king, or you were a chieftain and led your people through the desert, or through the oasis, or through the -- over the sea, to -- from continent to continent.

Abraham, as we all do not -- we are not like these people with union now, or these other Utopianists, or like Mr. Culbertson in bridge. We are not planners, or schemers, gentlemen. Anybody who has to do something in the world has to discover this under great pain. You cannot scheme whom -- which wife you have to marry. You -- she finds out. And then there it is. But this cannot be planned. In the same way, gentlemen, you are here taken into the greatest secret of creative living in the Bible, because you learn that Abraham had to try first the wrong way before he could know the right way, before he -- his instinct could tell him that the time could not mean, at which he lived, to go back to tribalism. He, who came from Ur -- {Chalsdim} as the Bible says -- and from Haran, two great cities, you see, with all the modern, central heating -- he -- you cannot go back and simply feel that God has called you to be one more of these multiple chieftains of a tribe of perhaps 5,000. And that's why you must read the ironical touch in Chapter 22nd, when it said, "You had wanted to become a chieftain of at best 5,000 men by sacrificing your first-born son. And I tell you that in blessing, I will bless thee, and in multiplying, I will multiply thy seed as the stars of Heaven -- the Heaven." Doing better than Egypt, doing better than any one tribe, by a million times. Something new. Something unheard-of. The promise, the prophecy of the coming unity of all mankind is entrusted to your seed.

That's a great discovery, gentlemen, that the future cannot be limited by the political or geographical confines of either a blood-group or a territorial-group. Any concept, gentlemen, which would have said, "You will be a big chieftain" or a big president, a big pharaoh, would have had only quantitative -- values,

compared to the existing forms of life. What is the hardest for you is to understand that bigger and better is not different. There's no new quality in this. To discover a new quality of life, a new way of life, you have to give up the old way of life, and you cannot become a bigger and better chieftain, let us say, of 25,000 tribesmen, you see. And you cannot become a larger pharaoh, like the Roman Caesar, who then governs the whole Mediterranean at the end. No difference between Cleopatra and Caesar in principle. Just the same. So they marry.

And Abraham however, feels already in 1200, in 1500, in 17- -- we don't know the year, of course. It must have been between fif- -- 1800 and 1200 B.C., he feels called to a new way of life, to something that defies the sedentary self- -- autonomy of one piece of land on the surface of the globe, and the restlessness of the tribe with its aloofness as against all other branches of the human race, with its warpaths, et cetera, you see, and its impenetrability to any other tongue, with its own tongue, you see, alone being able to make peace between different people. Can you see this? Is it clear? Any questions, please?

Gentlemen, in this little chapter, Genesis 22nd, there is then the seed of the specific character of Judaism. The specific character of Judaism is a challenge to the two existing, always-existing forms of government: the family and the city; or in larger terms, the clan and the empire. You cannot be clannish, because God has a purpose for all men together. And you cannot be territorial, because God created Heaven and earth. And that's why the Bible begins with this triumphant song, "In the beginning, God created Heaven and earth. Therefore no part of Heaven can be prescribed you -- to you the law of your earthly existence." No Tel-El-Amarna, in other words. This is written against this attempt, this experiment of the Egyptians. And everybody who heard this knew that this was revolutionary. This was a different way of life.

And in order to emphasize this, gentlemen, before I have -- give you the break, I -- let me make these two points. If you wanted to be anti-tribal, you had to fight the principle of the vendetta in the seventh degree. You'll remember that I told you the raft of time of the tribe extends to seven generations. So what does Moses do? What do -- does the Bible do? It speaks of the seven generations of Heaven and earth. Instead of having this little thing of grandfather, and father, and son, and grandson, and great-grandson, and then the ancestor is Number 7 behind you, he says, "The generations of those stars which you worship, they are your real life story." And the seven generations he projects into the heavens. And that's why the earth had to be created -- the world had to be created in seven days. Instead of seven generations, the Bible says seven days. And vice versa, gentlemen. The stars in the heavens, they move in 12 months, in 12 times 30 days, in 360 days, as we -- I -- you heard. That's the ordinary reckoning of the calendar.

So give me 12 tribes instead. The 12 tribes of Israel are written against the 12 months. If you put the 12 number -- sacred number 12 into the family system, then it cannot -- no longer be misunderstood as an astrological calendar notice. And so you get this great wisdom of -- the Bible that every word in the Bible is an attempt to immunize those who are moved by the words of the Bible out of the ruts of astrology on the one-hand side, and the calendar-worship of Egypt, and out of the vendetta and the seven-generation path of the tribes. And that's the Bible, gentlemen. And that's an interesting book, I should say, that from the first to the last word, every word has a meaning, is a battle delivered against the idols which were in every tribesman's head at that time, and in every -- agriculturist's, you see, and in every vintner's head, when the book was written. So that from generation to generation, those who read the Bible, you see, are, so to speak, surrounded by revelations, by -- by orders which defy the sky-world of Egypt and the ancestor totem-world of the tribes.

And that's why today this whole criticism of the Bible is always -- is absolutely beside the point. It is made by people who are deeply immersed -- immersed into -- into Oedipus complexes and Egyptian darkness. You are either, gentlemen, at your mother's apron strings, or you are haunted by the business cycle. Well, against both these gods, these superstitions, the Bible is written. And therefore, it puts the -- number 7, as I told you, in the sky, where you worship the 12, and it puts the number 12 into your family life, where you are just haunted by Aunt Elizabeth and Uncle Maxwell. Now let's have a break.

[tape interruption]

... our problem. Before we shall go into the Jewish story fully next time, I want to show you that there is another way out. It is not necessary only to create a status of constant future, of constant expectation, of prophecy and promise, which is the messianic realm of Judaism. It is -- has been done in antiquity, and it is done today by all the humanists, that they try to escape from the fleshpots of Egypt and from their tribal and clannish vendettas and family feuds, by the Greek path. And I think it is wiser, although it is -- seems perhaps to you irregular, that at this -- this very moment contrast the Greek solution and the Jewish solution. The Greeks are a synthesis of tribe and empire. The Jews are not. The word "synthesis," gentlemen, is a humanist word. It's an academic term. And in true religious life it doesn't occur. Religion is never a synthesis.

So the Greeks, and the humanists and the academics always have to get rid of religion. The Greeks are the people who, in order to be able to synthesize tribe and empire, had to denigrate the gods. And they did very successfully already in Homer. As you know, the -- Homer pokes fun at the gods; he satirizes them. They're funny. How did the Greeks come to this notion, gentlemen? That in

order to live in a wider world than one tribe or one empire, you have to satirize the gods. You have to be as areligious as you -- man -- as human as possible. They are the inventors of ethical culture, after all. Because the Greeks were condemned, as the people in New York are, to live in many religions, and in many countries, and with many people. The --Odyssey begins, "Tell me the story of the man who has seen many cities, many countries," { }. Obvious nobody who knows Greek. So, "Call -- give me the man's name who has seen the wide world with all its differences." The Greeks are sailors and they are tribesmen. And when they arrived at the shores of the Mediterranean from their primitive, wood-man's experiences as tribesmen in -- inner -- of Europe, they went to {Sicily}, as you know, as Iason, to -- find the golden fleece. He built the first boat, the Argo, in Thessalia, and Achilles is at home in Thessalia, the Olympus is placed in Thessalia. Thessaly is the country, gentlemen, in which the Greeks met the sea, and the world of Egypt and Babylonia, the world of the empires. And the Greeks are the Oly- -- people of the Olympic gods, and of Homer, because they were born in the conflict of a tribal existence, and an empire existence. And though they are, so to speak, they have taken -- accepted the marginal value of the tribe and the marginal value of the empire. What is the marginal value of the tribe, and what is the marginal value of the empire? The marginal value of the tribe is the family without vendetta. And the marginal value of the empire is temples without priests, without astrology. And that's what the Greeks have done.

If you look into Greek religion, gentlemen, you have all heard of Bacchus and Dionysus, and Venus, and you are even subservient to Venus and Bacchus, yourself. You are all little Greeks. What is it that you are when you worship Bacchus and Venus? What prevents you from being Egyptians, or Persians, or Chinese? Why are you not feeling like an Aztec when you get drunk? Just -- just feeling like a Dionysian, you see, {orgiast}. Why do we still read Mr. Hobbe's {Anacreotica}, Anacreon being the poet of -- inv- -- who invites us to drink? Because the priests of Egypt ruled over the land. This is not true in the Homeric age. The -- the unity of Greece, gentlemen, comes about by song. The singer -- the epics, Homer -- is the unifying tie of all the Greeks. This is very hard for you to understand, because different from all -- every generation in this college before you have not read Homer. Who has read Homer? Ah. That's in protest, I think. Wonderful.

Now, gentlemen, the function of The Odyssey { } was to unite all the Greeks on all the islands and all the cities and peninsulas of the Mediterranean. There were 258 islands listed in Homer. There were more than -- such a number of cities listed in the catalog of the ships in The Iliad. Aristotle wrote the constitutions of 158 different states of Greece. That is, gentlemen, the Greeks were born as pluralists. Will you take this down? The Greeks were born as tubal- -- three- --

as pluralists. Many tribes and many countries: that is the first thought of a Greek, that nobody is only of one tribe, or of one city. He is compelled, just in order to make a living, to plow the sea, to go across the wine-colored waves of the sea, and to land in another country and to befriend them. And we depend on the other fellow. And the other fellow is not just another fellow, gentlemen. It's a fellow who speaks a different language, and who worships other gods. That is the problem of Greece. The Greeks solved the problem of today's diversity of races, peoples, and creeds. The Jews solved the problem of their final unity, in the end. It's quite a different task. If you land in New York, you must get on with everybody. Armenian, and Jew, and Italian, and Pole, and everybody. But if you want to bring about the ultimate peace of the -- human, all the religions and all the worshipers of God, obviously it doesn't help you that you are nice to this fellow and nice to that fellow. That doesn't melt down his creed at all, you see.

So gentlemen, humanism and Judaism are eternal contrasts. One aims at the end, at the final unification. And the other aims on an immediate compromise. And we need both. You could not live with either one for one minute. Jews and Greeks are of -- both of ultimate necessity. Since there are so many tribes, and there are so many blood strands -- strains, and since there are so many climates, and so many regions, and so many kingdoms, and states, and republics, gentlemen, you have to have two catalysts: one catalyst that makes life tolerable, and therefore the great catchword of humanism is "tolerance," and rightly so. You have to tolerate one another. But if there was only tolerance, this would all dissolve in nothingness. There would be no structure to any life, because we only would hear, "One is as good as the other." You could never say why a Tibetan -- prayer mill was not just as good as the seven words on the Cross.

So gentlemen, Judaism is discriminatory. It distinguishes the upper and the lower, the primitive and the superior. And it waits. And it says, nothing as of today is more than a compromise. It is only as of now. It has no future. It bridges the gap at this moment in an emergency. But it is not the solution which explains how these various compromise units at any one time should disgorge their stream of life into one greater unity. And it's very hard for you to distinguish. As you know, when the Jews came into this country, they all became humanists. And when the Presbyterians, the Congregationalists or the Puritans came to this country, they all became Jews. That is, you have here a queer misunderstanding in this country. You have the strictness of the observance of the Puritans, which was a -- renewal of the old Israel, very strictly so. And you have a tremendous achievement in tolerance. And the bearers of this are -- you -- are, as I said, { } to, in a great exchange so that the Gentiles are the Jews and the Jews are the Gentiles, so to speak, if you call the { } Greeks. And it is very difficult for you, gentlemen, to respect both, and to understand that both are indispensable. You cannot do purely with expectation of the ultimate messianic hope and its fulfill-

ment. And you cannot do only with emergency compromises, from day to day. It is very difficult for you to understand, gentlemen. But the whole liberal arts college has been founded on the assumption that you could understand it. That's why the Bible was usually read here in this college, as you know, and the Biblical history of mankind was given, and the Greek and Latin classics were read at the same time. And that is the miracle of education for the last {five} hundred years, that by giving you both strands of the trans-scribal -- trans-tribal and transimperial solutions, you would be able to create in your own generation the solution between the two, the creative Christian step between Greeks and Jews.

In some form or other, gentlemen, we have to do this, also in our generation, without the labels. You can today judge nobody by saying "He's Jewish," or "He's Christian." Doesn't tell any story. Mr. Freud was a great Greek, although the people claim they know that he was Jewish. He had Venus on his desk, the goddess Venus. And he meant it. He is a great Greek. And therefore, I -- I -- as -- I say this in advance, we will deal with the Greeks and with the Jews much more elaborately in the next two weeks, but I have to tell you this beforehand: that you and I are still concerned with these two groups. We don't call them this way. We call the one perhaps the -- the political progressive party, or the revolutionary, or the -- the escha- -- today there is a new word in theology, you may have heard, "eschatology," which is heard -- bandied around. Who has heard this -- this terrible word, "eschatology"? It's so hard to pronounce, you have to {cough} first, and to {cough} afterwards. But it means the same. "Eschatology" means the finding in Christianity the Judaic element of expectation, of unrest, of restlessness, of judging the future in the light of -- the -- judging the present in the light of the future. That's eschatological. And that is the element of Abraham when he said, "I am not able to foretell what my son Isaac is going to do, but I devote my power of life to his future and not to my own will."

So I wanted only to place before you the strange fact, gentlemen: that the two groups that in antiquity superseded the most primitive creations of man -- the tribal order and the imperial order, the Greeks and the Jews -- have not left us, because the element of the final goal, and the element of immediate tolerance between the -- more than one form of life are of the greatest importance to -- to you and me at this moment, and at any moment because our world is plural. The empires and the tribes are all mixed up, you see, and meet constantly. And therefore, they need two things. The -- keeping the road open to the ultimate goal, where the tree -- in which direction the tree must grow, and keeping those lea- -- twigs and branches of the tree from entanglements, from ruining themselves. The tree has to be kept clear from disease, and clear from -- the -- the one -- one branch breaking down and crushing the others.

So Greeks and Jews, gentlemen, are eternal entities. And if you could only

take this now down, and underline it: the Greeks and the Jews are neither tribes nor empires. They contain tribal and imperial, or country, elements. The Jews have land -- a country, and the Jews have tribes. The Greeks have cities and temples, but they have no priesthood with power. And they have families, but they have no vendetta. They have made peace between the various clans. And it's still therefore very important, gentlemen, that Greek and Hebrew is learned. If you don't do it, some people have to do it in the world, perhaps the Chinese, because these two languages contain the -- of course, are built around this problem of bridging the gap now and of pointing to the ultimate goal at the end of time, gentlemen. This -- you must not think that a language is speaken wantonly.

I give you a last example of why this country is so sick. In Greek, you do not only say, "I do this, and I do that," as one man write -- wrote a paper for me here the other day, "I -- Cardinal Newman converted to Christianity, to the Catholic Church."

I sat down, "Pardon me, he was converted." But in this poor English language which you speak, everybody is active, everybody is doing the thing, and doing another thing, and so he finally ends in Brattleboro, because nobody can do all the things that have to be done, himself. You are all overactive.

In Greece, Greeks -- the Greek language, there is this wonderful wisdom that you can say of -- of an action, "I know not if I sink or swim." You know the famous poem, the English poem, you see? "There is a ship and it sails the sea," you know this, yes? "But not" -- wie? "And the sea is as deep as deep can be. But not so deep as the love I am in. I know not if I sink or swim." And the Greeks have a special verbal form for this. Because no Greek knew very often whether he was an Egyptian, or an Athenian, or a Spartan, and so they -- invented the medium form. "I -- am in this. I am in love," you may express. But not even that much, "I am," but "I in love, love in me." And nobody can decide in this verbal form who is doing what, because it is just as much done to you as you do it.

Now, gentlemen, if more of you knew this, there would be less visitors to Mr. McKenna, because you all have this fancy idea that either you have to do it, or -- you see, or you're sick, or you are -- cannot fulfill your will. You are all overwilled, because your language is very one-sided, utterly lopsided. And therefore, gentlemen -- I mean this -- the people rediscover these Greek and Hebrew languages, I think, in the future as medications. It's much better than barbital to keep you awake, You take drugs, gentlemen, for your body. It is high time, that you again begin to know that when I talk to you, I try to give you medicine. I try to -- try to make you say that there are quite other ways of judging your own actions, and of dealing with your own life. And that's why we still have to speak of the Greeks and the Jews.