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Egyptian Civilization & Organicity

Plinio Corrêa de Oliviera
We affirmed in the last article that only in Christendom did men give everything they could give; therefore, they reached an apex that no other people did.

The sphynx and pyramids of Egypt

Egypt, home of a knowledge superior to the man’s capacity

Someone could object that the Egyptians did something similar. In his book The Mysterious Science of the Pharaohs (La Science Mysterieuse des Pharaons) Abbé Moreux studied the scientific and technological advances achieved by the Egyptians.

For instance, their knowledge of astronomy and geography was so great they constructed their monuments taking into consideration the position of the stars as well as the dimensions of the earth and the ocean. They also were able to raise to the top of their pyramids enormous stones that could not be lifted even by the most powerful cranes of New York (in the 1920s when he was writing). How do you explain such tremendous advancements?

We can say that the argument would prove too much. If it is demonstrated that this knowledge is over and beyond what a man could have normally, then it stands to reason that they received that science from a revelation.

Stained glass window depicting God, Adam, and Eve

Adam & Eve kept the memory of many things
they knew in Paradise

There are historians who work with the hypothesis that the Egyptians had a science that came from the primitive knowledge of Adam, which is normally called primitive revelation. Indeed, after Adam and Eve were expelled from Paradise, they still remembered many things superior to the human intelligence that they had received in Paradise. That is, they were in possession of a knowledge beyond the strength of their human intelligence or experience to discover. They had received that knowledge before the Fall and they handed it down it to their children, who taught it to their offspring etc. So, from generation to generation it was transmitted.

Now, some peoples maintained the knowledge of that primitive treasure more, and others less.

There are signs of that primitive wisdom among peoples in various fields. For example, how can one explain that from mankind’s very beginning, men knew remedies that would cure various illnesses?

St. Raphael, Tobias, and the fish

St. Raphael revealed to Tobias the healing
properties of codfish

We know the story of St. Raphael who told Tobias to catch a cod fish and keep its heart, liver and gall to use as medicines to cure his father’s blindness. In this case it was an Angel who revealed the science to man. But how many other diseases was early man able to cure because he had knowledge of the correct medication? There were countless diseases for which he had the right remedy. Who told him that this herb or that fruit would cure that particular ailment? This indicates that he had this knowledge from the beginning because it came from Adam.

Another is the culinary field. How did men know that this fruit or that herb was good to eat and not poisonous? Since the beginning of mankind people ate the healthful food and avoided the harmful ones. They had no experience; nonetheless, there is no record of large groups of people being poisoned by eating the wrong food. Again, who told them to eat this and avoid that? Here is another symptom that men knew these things because they received that science from Adam and Eve.

These examples indicate the presence of an ancient revelation that allows men to benefit from solutions beyond his capacity. The hypothesis thus emerges that the Egyptians maintained many principles of that primitive revelation and applied them not only to feed and cure themselves, but also to build their monuments. I believe it is very reasonable to work with this hypothesis.

This could be the case, but we should also take into consideration that the Egyptians could have also been assisted by the Devil. It is a possibility that we can also easily admit.

Spontaneity in organicity & the Catholic Faith

city planners

City planners constructing an inorganic society

The objection answered, we return to the point of departure: the idea of a perfect, precise and complete organicity and the Catholic Faith are not unconnected.

In the Middle Ages we note that there were no planning commissions to arrange society. Things happened spontaneously and naturally, and were successful.

In life man experiences many things of which he is unaware, but that are successful. For example, man is constantly blinking and irrigating his eyes through this operation but he does not think about it; most of us do not even realize the beneficial effect of blinking.

What is proper to organicity is that it is superior to a man’s reflection, corresponding to a plan of God. This organicity makes things happen that only afterwards does man, applying his reason, realize were well-done. Organicity is so wise that we should respect all spontaneity that is not bad because in this good spontaneity there is a much greater wisdom than that of the great sociologists.

Medieval lecture hall

A medieval lecture hall in which
professor & students are seated

The same happens in the good type of spontaneity that forms our habits. There are things that the physicians go on to justify only after the fact: for example, to seat oneself at intervals. There are professions in which man has stand the whole day; this is bad for the health. The common man has no idea that to sit down is good for his health; he thinks only of his comfort. But today physicians have demonstrated that it is good for his health. If people were to stand the whole day – students listening to their classes standing and the professor giving his class standing – the number of ill persons caused by this problem would be countless.

The inestimable thing about organicity is that it contains treasures of an upright order superior to the comprehension of man. What is important, then, is be able to discern what is the bad spontaneity as well as the action of the Devil. The Devil is the patron of a counter-organicity.

Thus do we understand that to devise a full plan for making a society is not good. Society should not be planned. What we should do is to create conditions to avoid evil. This is the first function of one who governs. Next, he must observe what is good, see where it is heading, and then assist it in this direction. The plan, when it exists, is only to encourage the good, normal course of things.

In this sense Counter-Revolutionaries – who are often wrongly accused of being authoritarian – are very friendly to this liberty. Because of this, they are viscerally anti-socialist and anti-authoritarian.

Things should be set on track and everything will go well. The important question is to know the track. Again, the track is to let things follow their natural order according to which they follow the plan of God.

This would be our notion of organicity.

Posted August 25, 2023


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