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  Charles Fourier and Thelema
General Thelema Posted by Mark Shekoyan on March 30, 2001 @ 08:09 PM
from the utopiate-of-the-masses dept.

Of the numerous social philosophers of the 19th Century, Charles Fourier stands as one of the most unknown, yet potentially prophetic visionaries of a liberated world. Similar in spirit to the individualist anarchism of Max Stirner, yet devoid of the alienated egotism, Fourier provides a radical philosophy of liberty which posits the evolution of social, global, and cosmic harmony through the liberation of desire. To quote Hakim Bey's summary of Fourier's philosophy extensively:


For Fourier the universe is composed of living beings, planets, & stars, who feel passion & who carry out sexual intercourse, so that creation itself is continual. The miseries of Civilization have deflected Earth & humanity from their proper destiny in a literal cosmic sense. Passion, which we have been taught to regard as "evil," is in fact virtually the divine principle. Human beings are microscopic stars, & all passions & desires (including "fetishes" & "perversions") are by nature not only good but necessary for the realization of human destiny. In Fourier's system of Harmony all creative activity including industry, craft, agriculture, etc. will arise from liberated passion -- this is the famous theory of "attractive labor." Fourier sexualizes work itself -- the life of the Phalanstery is a continual orgy of intense feeling, intellection, & activity, a society of lovers & wild enthusiasts. When the social life of Earth is harmonized, our planet will re-join the universe of Passion & undergo vast transformations, affecting human form, weather, animals, & plants, even the oceans.

Passion draws humanity into association just asgravity draws celestial bodies into orbital systems. The phalanstery is a little solar system revolving around the central fire of the passions. Thus, although Fourier always defends the individual against the tyranny of the Civilized groups (what we've called Spectacular groups, in the modern context), nevertheless for him the group in its ideal form takes on a quality of absoluteness. It's been jokingly said of him that the only sin in his system is eating lunch alone. But "association" cannot be considered a form of collectivism or communism -- it is not strictly "egalitarian," nor does it eliminate personal property or even inheritance. Moreover, all the elaborate titles & ranks Fourier delighted to invent for his Harmonians were voluntary & purely ceremonial. The Harmonian does not live with some 1600 people under one roof because of compulsion or altruism, but because of the sheer pleasure of all the social, sexual, economic, "gastrosophic," cultural, & creative relations this association allows & encourages.

As Hakim Bey summarizes, Fourier's is a philosophy of liberated eros made the essential ingredient for the creation of a truly just, harmonious, and creative world.

Fourier's vision of the unbounded self as the gateway to a liberated world mirrors my understanding of Thelemic Philosophy in almost every way. We know the quotes: "Every man and women is a star," "The Only Sin Is Restriction," etc., . . .

But Fourier's vision seems to say something quite radical beyond the ken of most Thelemic writings. Fourier says that in a world of such liberated beings, a higher order cosmic harmony would evolve which might gradually change weather patterns and natural phenomena into more harmonious and appealing patterns.

Could Fourier have had an intuitive understanding that beings living in perfect harmony that follows from the alignment and expression of their deepest inner nature create a collective morphogenetic field which resonates and subtly entrains the world around them, molding to more beautiful patterns? Might a culture of such beings plant harmonious seeds in the fields of dispersion around them to bring a higher order coherence in which lies the doorway to the Utopia that beckons in our hearts?

Could it be that our current global weather patterns and natural disasters are the inverse of Fourier's Vision; that we are internally fragmented, dispersed, and cut off from our passions, and so the energies we generate around us reflect our inner conflict?

It seems that Fourier's vision provides aninteresting parallel to the "Heavenly City" metaphor of a New Jerusalem spoken of in the Bible. In such a imaginal space, the "Lions lie down with Lambs," or the chthonic primal energies of nature complement the peaceful angelic powers of spirit. That is, Fourier seems to provide a philosophy of interspecies, interplanetary, intercosmic resonance and harmony based on attraction, love and freedom. If this isn't Thelemic, I don't know what is . . .



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    Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
    by Virbius on Friday March 30, @11:01PM
    The nine unknown men ceremonially don their football helmets and begin to chant:

    "Sun God! Sun God! RA, RA, RA!"

    That was really most excellent.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
    by Jon Auviere on Saturday March 31, @10:10AM
    Fourier was truly one of the great French thinkers of his day. What makes his work so vibrant is that what he wrote flowed so naturally from within him, and it can be explored that the French have the advantage on passionate distinctiveness. This is obvious to anyone who has traveled there and experienced firsthand their homeliness and true perfection of service. That even the simple Parisian greeting surpasses “Man” in its buoyancy. All cultures could benefit from this if for only they borrowed a few inklings of the French hospitality. I can only say that it is sad how the French economy poorly reflects their genuine respect for all things social.

    Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
    by Shader on Saturday March 31, @08:49PM
    Andre' Breton said: Fourier is surrealist in Utopianism

    ..you notice that in such an 'imaginary' world, (Fourier's Utopia)...self-importance would stick out like a sore thumb...

    and romantic visionary poets are not considered insane...!

    also there is no religion or politics as such!

    only wildly free lovers who's wild love making
    on the green house floor, or out under the stars
    or on the temple alter, or on the kitchen table,
    only this, and the spontanious poetic naming of everything under the dome of the heavens, language
    becoming dangerious and sinous and laughterful like the primal energy animal it is, only this would
    connect the electricity in the clouds, and the
    rosy rain drops of pure nectar of the gods...

    Thelema...is surrealist in change!

    • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
      by Virbius on Saturday March 31, @10:21PM
      [In the Shells.]


      • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
        by Virbius on Saturday March 31, @11:24PM
        If my reason for being this offended is not VERY clear, please read the article "Weeding of the Flowers" and my comments concerning this situation posted there.


        • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
          by Virbius on Saturday March 31, @11:36PM
          [In the Shells.]


          • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
            by Shader on Sunday April 01, @04:38AM
            [In the Shells.]


            • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
              by Virbius on Sunday April 01, @11:19AM
              [In the Shells.]


              • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
                by Virbius on Sunday April 01, @11:27AM
                [In the Shells.]


                • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
                  by Shader on Sunday April 01, @05:02PM
                  [In the Shells.]


                  • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
                    by Shader on Sunday April 01, @06:09PM
                    [In the Shells.]


                    • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
                      by Virbius on Sunday April 01, @06:27PM
                      [In the Shells.]


                      • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
                        by Shader on Sunday April 01, @08:23PM
                        ...as it is obvious that you are such a great guy

                        i am going to do just that...YOU WIN!

                        ...for now!...for now!

                        here's your bay!...go for it!


                        • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
                          by Shader on Sunday April 01, @10:00PM
                          [In the Shells.]


                          • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
                            by Virbius on Monday April 02, @05:03AM
                            [In the Shells.]


                            • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
                              by Pavo on Tuesday April 03, @12:19AM
                              Excuse me guys. I don't know really where this started or why, and I don't really care, but this is neither the time nor the place for this stuff. Could you two please flame each other over private e-mail instead of carrying your vitriol from article to article here on Beast Bay? I clicked on this link to read Mark's article and people's response to it--not your nonsense. Thank you.

                              --Pavo


                              • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
                                by Virbius on Tuesday April 03, @11:50AM
                                I agree, this is all very disturbing. As for carrying on this diatribe by e-mail, I neither WANT this argument occurring in my mailbox, nor do I think it would have had the same effect had this NOT occurred in PUBLIC. I am sorry that this has disturbed your reading of the article, as it has also disturbed mine.


    Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
    by Nekial on Saturday March 31, @10:17PM
    Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.

    Wonderful piece! Fourier's terrific. And very Themelic. How influenced by Rabelais do you figure?

    Humanistic Psychology/self-actualization, Fourier, Thelema. Three blind men, one elephant.

    Love is the law, love under will.

    Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
    by Micha deBarca on Monday April 02, @09:58AM
    Ahem, I am suitably impressed by the flaming of tyrant posters. But nevertheless will add my 2 cts. =D
    A personal favorite with me was :
    'Eros and Civilisation', by Henry Marcuse.
    Was something of a ravishing intellectual experience in my teens, an eye-opener if you will. His coupling of analytical psychology with the ideal of socialism I found (and still find) intrigueing, to say the least.

    • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
      by Fr. Zarathustra on Thursday April 12, @06:49PM
      I concure re Marcuse. I have not finished Eros and Civilization; I know of Marcuse by reputation.

      I encourage you to submit an article on the topic of Marcuse and Thelema.


      • Re: Charles Fourier and Thelema
        by Frater Vaguely Imperious on Sunday April 15, @10:42PM
        Care Shader and Virbius,
        Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

        Your public displays of childish hair-pulling is an annoyance to those who take the time read the articles in this page. Though it is slightly entertaining it is not the reason to visit this site so I ask you to exchange e-mail addresses or phone numbers and continue the mud-slinging on your time. All I see is a trog with something to prove and a hot-heasded individual. Nobody cares who is educated or who is Christian or Thelemic.
        Love is the Law, Love under Will.



     
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