Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

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drcyd
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Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by drcyd »

I've just posted a new Gnostic Gospel article over on my Gnostic blog. It's called "If All Are Redeemed, Why Not Be Sinful?"

Here are the first few paragraphs--please continue the article at the blog.

One of the big heresies of gnosticism is that all second order powers are redeemed by Christ and all will someday return to the paradise of the Fullness. Yay! Everyone is going to heaven! No one is going to hell, not even the fallen angels. What joy!

This seems to fly in the face of Christian orthodoxy that promotes the idea that only those humans who confess a belief in Jesus as the Christ will make it into heaven, and those who don't believe in Jesus will go to an eternal damnation of suffering in hell. Conventional Christianity states that Jesus came to save humanity, but only those who acknowledge Jesus as the only Son of God and invite him into their hearts will be saved. This is the basis for all evangelism and all churches that follow the Nicene Creed--which is to say, all Christian churches, whether Catholic or Protestant. This is why Christians are so keen on saving souls--they do not want you to suffer for eternity in hell.

The Gnostic Church begs to differ with that common interpretation of Christ's mission. According to the books of the Nag Hammadi library, all of creation will be redeemed and returned to the Fullness and the Father's home in heaven. All of creation. Everyone and everything will be made clean and pure and holy by the end. To borrow a popular expression: "It will all be good in the end; if it's not all good yet, then it's not yet the end."

Gnosis refers to the ability to use reason and logic to arrive at spiritual truth. So, let's think together about this idea of Christ and redemption and who does or does not go to heaven.

First, if Christ's redemption were a matter of your belief, then Christ's mission of salvation would be limited to what you believe. In other words, you would be the one holding the power of salvation, not Christ. Does that make any sense to you? Are you the one who redeems, or is Christ? Do you think Christ can't redeem the unwilling? Can you see how making your beliefs central to redemption actually limits the power of Christ? Can you see how that makes sinful humans more powerful than the mission of Christ's redemption? Limiting Christ to your belief, it seems to me, is the greater heresy than simply trusting Christ to accomplish the mission. It is Christ's job to redeem humanity, not yours.

Second, according to gnostic texts, all creatures, great and small, will be redeemed. This means that all creatures are going to heaven. My dog has never professed a belief in Jesus as the Christ, yet my dog is going to heaven. The fishes in the water, the birds in the air, the insects, the forest animals, all "second order powers" are redeemed by Christ. It is the job of the Christ to redeem creation, irrespective of creation's ability to confess that fact. Do you think that only good dogs go to heaven? Or nice fishes? Maybe only herbivores? Perhaps only parrots who can say "Jesus saves"?

please finish the article at https://newgnosticgospel.blogspot.com/2 ... inful.html

cyd ropp
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Mildir »

I just read all the article.
It's beautiful to see there is still someone who enjoys making such profound reflections.

Redemption is a concept forged by men, it springs from the inability of our culture to live without the concepts of "fault" and "punishment".
I think that a being who can identify itself as the entire universe, with its countless dimensions, does not need these concepts.
It is we who need them, at least for now, so we put them into the image of God that we made for ourselves.

This is my view, based on many firsthand experiences:
Beings such as humans live in order to get to know themselves better, in order to gradually discover their purest nature.
That's all.
They can be light or they can be darkness.
In the early period of their evolution they don't know which they are: they find themselves in a grey area, neither purely white nor purely black.
But the universe - in essence - is like a torque: light and darkness dance around each other producing what we may call a "centrifugal force", which causes all beings to eventually become part of one side or of the other.
Thus in real life we see beings drawn to love, creation and light and beings drawn to hatred, destruction and dark.
Almost none of them realizes it, but they will eventually become either angels or demons.
And it's not wrong to become and to be either: it's a free choice, the discovery of what our spirit really wants.

That may lead to the question: what to do if evil beings damage good beings?
First - in my view - it's always important to keep in mind that in worlds such as ours the good beings damage the evil as well.
The two parts simply hinder each other and each other's desires, if they live in the same exact place.
The answer to this problem is not punishment or making people feel guilty: the answer is simply relocation, for both sides.
Thus, according to what I've learnt, when a being has finally found out which side it identifies with the most, it is sent either in the realm of light or in the realm of darkness.

This is what is happening to the universe, or - like I love to call it - the One (i.e. God): a process leading to the achievement of self-knowledge.
God is defining Himself through every being and thing in the universe, He is saying "Who am I here? > Answer; Who am I here? > Answer; Who am I here? > Answer (Continues)".


This is to explain why - in my view - things such as redemption and punishment don't make any sense: we created them, I hope we won't be using these notions for long.
Our myths may be misguided, but they steer however shakily towards the true harbour, while materialistic 'progress' leads only to a yawning abyss and the Iron Crown of the power of evil. (J.R.R. Tolkien)
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Lúthien »

I don’t think it’s as simple as evil and good being one another’s mirror. It’s maybe a nicely symmetrical notion that’s been brilliantly employed in Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman’s “Good Omens”, but come on - just think a little bit about how evil operates. This won’t do.

In the split-off part of the discussion (about the Salvia Collective) there was talk about meetings with the Great Ones. I don’t know about you, but those meetings have left me with no doubt that there is a consciousness there that might maybe not align completely with the traditional religious notion of “good” (because that is always a filtered cultural interpretation anyhow), but it definitely includes “good”, and not “evil”.



Mythopoeia wrote: (...)
Yes! ‘wish-fulfilment dreams’ we spin to cheat
our timid hearts and ugly Fact defeat!

Whence came the wish, and whence the power to dream,

or some things fair and others ugly deem?


All wishes are not idle, nor in vain

fulfilment we devise — for pain is pain,

not for itself to be desired, but ill;

or else to strive or to subdue the will

alike were graceless; and of Evil this

alone is deadly certain: Evil is.

Blessed are the timid hearts that evil hate

that quail in its shadow, and yet shut the gate;
that seek no parley, and in guarded room,
though small and bate, upon a clumsy loom

weave tissues gilded by the far-off day

hoped and believed in under Shadow’s sway.

Blessed are the men of Noah’s race that build

their little arks, though frail and poorly filled,

and steer through winds contrary towards a wraith,

a rumour of a harbour guessed by faith.

Blessed are the legend-makers with their rhyme

of things not found within recorded time.

It is not they that have forgot the Night,

or bid us flee to organised delight,

in lotus-isles of economic bliss

forswearing souls to gain a Circe-kiss

(and counterfeit at that, machine-produced,

bogus seduction of the twice-seduced).


Such isles they saw afar, and ones more fair,

and those that hear them yet may yet beware.

They have seen Death and ultimate defeat,

and yet they would not in despair retreat,

but oft to victory have tuned the lyre

and kindled hearts with legendary fire,
illuminating Now and dark Hath-been

with light of suns as yet by no man seen.
(...)
Why lead a virtuous life?
Because it’s better to strive towards good.
A! Elin velui, dîn dolog, aduial lúthad!
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Lúthien »

Continuing ...

It’s funny that I explored this exact mirror symmetry between “good” and “evil” for a couple of short satires about the “faux diabolical” pop group Kiss - renamed to “Kiff” in those stories. I wrote them originally to tease my brother in law who is still a fan at 50, but writing satire has turned out to be a remarkably fun thing to do.

When you play around with those notions of good and bad like this, it becomes quickly apparent that you cannot simply mirror them. It’s obvious in all five pieces I wrote about them, but most notably in the one where they find themselves lost in the Transylvanian outback and, of course, stumble across a lugubrious vampire castle.

The thing is that every being, good or evil, must necessarily share a number of characteristics. One of those is that they all want to see their intent fulfilled - after all, what’s an arch-villain who doesn’t care if his plans for destroying civilisation will work out or not?

From there the concept of mirror symmetry starts to break down in an avalanche of paradoxes. The members of Kiff, dedicated to evil as they should, are pleased to come across such a somber and austere castle (with god knows what lurking inside) - but hey, wait ... “pleased”?

No, they can’t be pleased. The mirror symmetry demands the opposite. So, they become more disgruntled when they approach the door of the castle. They knock, the resident vampire opens the door, and then - what? They slap him? Insult him? They should do something antagonistic in any case. But that would lessen the chance of them being invited in, which was what they wanted.

So, that’s paradox nr. 1.
And that’s only the beginning. Let’s say they come across a Salvation Army outpost instead. Because that’s supposedly “good”, the members of Kiff aren’t too pleased - the frickin’ Salvation Army, of all things! Boo! So, they will react - how?

Will they be grumpy?

No, they can’t be grumpy - see above: we’ve already established that they should feel grumpy when coming across something evil.

So, they should feel happy?

Impossible. They HATE goodness, so they can’t possibly be happy when stumbling across it.

So they’re grumpy. Which makes them feel good - because they like unpleasant stuff. But then, they feel bad again for feeling “good” - you get the idea. It blows up.

As I said: it won’t do.

To cut things short: the naive mirror image of evil vs good is implicitly paradoxical. It can’t exist.

You might compare it to how negative numbers aren’t symmetrical to positive ones. You might be tempted to think that at first, until you come across the notion of squares and roots. Then you’ll find out really quick that they’re not symmetrical after all - in fact, that all this leads to the need to postulate a whole new class of numbers - imaginary (or complex) numbers.

Another physical metaphor is to ponder how a hypothetical object with negative mass would respond gravity-wise to regular mass, and to other negative masses.
It’s interesting, to say the least.

So, to recap: what’s the point of being virtuous? I think the answer is that the need for some absolute notion of “good” arises from considerations like above. All beings strive towards some sort of fulfilment - even evil ones. Morgoth truly wants to dominate all of Arda. While that’s not OK, the “wanting” itself is not inverted.

I don’t intend to write down a full philosophical treaty on the subject here, but I didn’t want to leave that silly pop-cultural postmodernist notion of “evil, good ... its all relative, duh” go unchallenged.

I blame Michael Jackson for starting this nonsense, with that silly song “I’m bad, I’m bad! Ew!” 😂

But then again, Cole Porter noted something similar in the 1930’s, in his song “Anything goes”:
Cole Porter wrote: In olden days, a glimpse of stocking
Was looked on as something shocking.
But now, God knows,
Anything goes.
(...)

The world has gone mad today
And good's bad today,
And black's white today,
And day's night today
(...)
He was supposedly writing about the Roaring Twenties, which supports my hunch that people tend to start flirting with the notion of “evil as just a more badass attitude” as soon as they are comfortable, and forgetting what evil was really like again.

Let Simone Weil refresh your memory:
Imaginary evil is romantic and varied;
real evil is gloomy, monotonous, barren, boring.

Imaginary good is boring;
real good is always new, marvelous, intoxicating.
A! Elin velui, dîn dolog, aduial lúthad!
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

Lúthien wrote:
Mon Mar 02, 2020 10:52 pm
I don’t think it’s as simple as evil and good being one another’s mirror. It’s maybe a nicely symmetrical notion that’s been brilliantly employed in Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman’s “Good Omens”, but come on - just think a little bit about how evil operates. This won’t do.
Precisely!

You know, one thing hat really annoys me about New Age-esque thought modes is this oft repeated duality, usually expressed in the notion: "Without Evil, how could we know Good?" Well, animals have a pretty good idea of each notion without needing an opposite to complete the schema. Isn't that right, Richard Parker?

{R.P.: Damn straight!}

Another, for me, more irritating problem is that New Agers rarely attempt to define metrics, so that, for example when someone uses the term 'elf' but doesn't define it (which is nearly universal) it could mean anything from the Quendi Tolkien wrote of (rarely) to the Wild Elves of Flipparian VI who ride the great proto-Dragons of the sorcerer Vliubarinius Polufus III, Emperor of the Known Universe (most commonly).

Added: The only problem with that is that I'm only interested in the Quendi, and don't give a damn about the Wild Elves of Flipparian VI or Vliubarinius Polufus III, Emperor of the Known Universe. The weird thing is: a large percentage of the New Agians think I should be just as interested in that drivel as I am the Quendi, which I just don't get, and in any case, don't heed. Which makes me a Bad Man. ;)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BY6_3Y7OOo8

P.S. Loved the Mythopoeia quote, BTW. I haven't read it in depth for a number of years.
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Mildir »

Hi Lúthien, I read all your replies but it will take time for me to express my ideas about all the relevant points, for now I am just starting (so forgive me if I miss something)... :)
Lúthien wrote:
Mon Mar 02, 2020 10:52 pm
I don’t think it’s as simple as evil and good being one another’s mirror.
I don't think it's that simple either.
But I do feel they are opposite forces, if that's what you mean with "mirror": two opposite forces which - in the history of the existence - have changed their position relative to each other.
So I'd start from the simple idea that the evolution of the universe is given by two opposite poles interacting with each other.
Then, there may be phases in which one is inside the other, wholly or partly, phases in which they form one body and phases in which they are separated and each one of them is like a "planet" that speeds the other's rotation up by means of its own gravity.
those meetings have left me with no doubt that there is a consciousness there that might maybe not align completely with the traditional religious notion of “good” [...] but it definitely includes “good”, and not “evil”.
I'm not entirely sure of what you mean here: do the Valar you met not consider anything truly evil in nature?
Don't they think that something only can exist if its opposite does?
If there weren't a Melkor, could there really be a Manwë? :)
What would define Manwë, then? :huh:
Lúthien wrote:
Tue Mar 03, 2020 6:01 am
The thing is that every being, good or evil, must necessarily share a number of characteristics. One of those is that they all want to see their intent fulfilled - after all,
Since you mentioned meeting the Valar... am I allowed to talk about the things I learnt as a child in Valinor?
We can assume that that Valinor is just an imaginal dimension I visited with my mind, for now, it doesn't matter, it's not the point.
I had a teacher, Aglardín was his name, who used to tell me that "they all want to see their intent fulfilled" is a false belief, an idea developed by those who didn't have the chance to know evil well.
The greatest and ultimate joy of evil is seeing its dreams destroyed. :)
Evil must necessarily act as if it cared about something, but only because otherwise there would be nothing to lose.
Which leads to its true and deep nature: the bigger the dream, the bigger the ultimate joy of seeing it utterly destroyed.
This happens (if what I feel and have heard in words is true) because evil is the exact opposite of good: evil yearns to get greatly disappointed, to fall just the moment after it convinced itself that victory was achieved.

The tricky thing is: evil is the opposite of good in every aspect.
So, good cultivates knowledge, seeks the truth.
Evil doesn't: it doesn't even completely know itself, oftentimes, because there are things that evil simply doesn't want to see.
So, for instance, this Eldo used to tell to the explorers of dimensions "you will find that many evil hearts don't know that this is what they want, but inadvertently they always behave so that this happens, so that they lose everything right when they cry victory. This is their deepest nature and only vast entities such as the Pillars of the Dark, compared to which Alcar was just a baby, are fully aware of it"
what’s an arch-villain who doesn’t care if his plans for destroying civilisation will work out or not?
Oh, they care - if I am right - but only because without caring you can't lose. :)
From there the concept of mirror symmetry starts to break down in an avalanche of paradoxes.
Not my concept of "mirror symmetry"... S)
The members of Kiff, dedicated to evil as they should, are pleased to come across such a somber and austere castle (with god knows what lurking inside) - but hey, wait ... “pleased”?

No, they can’t be pleased. The mirror symmetry demands the opposite. So, they become more disgruntled when they approach the door of the castle. They knock, the resident vampire opens the door, and then - what? They slap him? Insult him? They should do something antagonistic in any case. But that would lessen the chance of them being invited in, which was what they wanted.
If I am right, your reasoning is flawed: you are analyzing an evil entity, from a non-evil entity viewpoint.
You are assuming that what is good for you (achieving purposes, surviving, winning) is also good for the evil entity.
Regardless of whether this entity knows it or not, regardless of whether it wants to admit it or not, that is not its nature.
So yes, they might slap him, because that's what they are, and they wouldn't be invited in.
This happpens when evil is not ambitious, but the masters of evil go far in their plans, until they are almost fulfilled.
Then, their nature always gets the better of them: one misstep, and they burn everything down.
And then they are happy, because that is their way of being happy, the opposite of ours.
If I am right, which I will never claim in this life, unless the Elves of the Valinor I spoke of (again: assuming it's only in my mind) come here and prove that this is how the whole thing works.
So, the most "extreme" thing I will ever state here is I may be right (concerning this or other specific aspects of the universe).
That's all.
I'll tell you more: I do consider your viewpoint, Lúthien, it's just difficult for me to think you are absolutely right because of feelings of mine, "cognitive dissonance" I think you'd call it...
Our myths may be misguided, but they steer however shakily towards the true harbour, while materialistic 'progress' leads only to a yawning abyss and the Iron Crown of the power of evil. (J.R.R. Tolkien)
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Mildir »

Meneldur Olvarion wrote:
Mon Mar 09, 2020 8:14 pm
You know, one thing hat really annoys me about New Age-esque thought modes is this oft repeated duality, usually expressed in the notion: "Without Evil, how could we know Good?"
I don't think this is a new age idea, but rather an old notion newagers adopted (and twisted, in some cases).
This is not exactly what I mean either.
There are ways to know good without knowing evil or viceversa.
But there is no way that something exists if its opposite doesn't.
So good exists thanks to evil, and the other way around.
This is what I think, irrespective of newagers.
Our myths may be misguided, but they steer however shakily towards the true harbour, while materialistic 'progress' leads only to a yawning abyss and the Iron Crown of the power of evil. (J.R.R. Tolkien)
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

Mildir wrote:
Tue Mar 10, 2020 4:12 pm
But there is no way that something exists if its opposite doesn't.
Sure there is. As a trivial example, there is light (and other EM radiation of various frequencies, but I'll use 'light' for all, as the divisions are rather artificial and are based on limited human visual perception), but there is no such thing as "anti-light" [discussion link].

So there you are. Q.E.D.
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Mildir »

Meneldur Olvarion wrote:
Tue Mar 10, 2020 5:08 pm
Sure there is. As a trivial example, there is light [...], but there is no such thing as "anti-light"
Complex topic. :hmm:
My ideas can only be skin-deep here, but I do have some:
1) Some things in the universe might be like hyenas: they might become their opposite because of a particular ability to change. This doesn't necessarily mean that we are not in the presence of a force and its opposite.
2) There has been talk of matter light and antimatter light (light produced by antimatter), and some seem to be gathering evidence that antimatter light can annul the effect of light, thus making something not visible: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eHj3MN9Sf2A
Our myths may be misguided, but they steer however shakily towards the true harbour, while materialistic 'progress' leads only to a yawning abyss and the Iron Crown of the power of evil. (J.R.R. Tolkien)
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

That seems directly contraindicated in the discussion I linked, but I likely chose the wrong example in the sense that I'm not really interested in physics or the underlying substrate of existence in the way that most other people seem to be. In that respect alone, Donald Trump and I are alike in that I'm "remarkably incurious" about such things (mainly because I have a better 'technology' to investigate the nature of things: shamanism).

But one could use any complex structure for which it would be very hard to construct its opposite. For example, Dave Woosley: there's no such thing as an anti-Dave Woosley, although there are a lot of people and things Dave Woosley doesn't like, but that doesn't necessarily mean they are his opposites (in fact, sometimes he resents similarities most especially).

As I said, anything complex enough doesn't necessarily have an antipode.
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Mildir »

Meneldur Olvarion wrote:
Tue Mar 10, 2020 7:35 pm
As I said, anything complex enough doesn't necessarily have an antipode.
Ok, my brain is melting...
I tried to figure out why I can't help feeling that this is true, I tried to analyze physics, I even wrote a long message with potentially useful examples: it got lost.

Splinter concepts:

- By "opposite" I meant primarily "playing an opposite role", like predator vs prey
- How can you be aware you are a predator, if not through prey?
- How can you be a predator if you are not aware you are a predator ?
- How can you be an entity with a role if you are not aware of your role ?
- In a universe where every existing entity has a role, how can you exist if you are not an entity with a role ?

Conclusion: as a predator, you exist because an entity playing an opposite role also exists.

You may say: predator is not everything I am, I am more complex than that.
Yes, we are beings with a complex structure, we might consider ourselves "sets of entities", and in every set of entities one entity is the most important, what defines you the most, your true nature (truth is always simple).
The others are nuances springing from it, but for every single one of them the reasoning is the same: it exists because an entity with an opposite role exists.

So, for example, you are a predator, but also a father and a teacher.
- How can you be aware you are (also) a father, if not through children?
... etc. ...
- How can you be aware you are (also) a teacher, if not through learners?
... etc. ...

The applications are infinite, because they are the infinite.
They are the basis of existence.

Also, there isn't just a single way of being aware: stones are aware, trees are aware, animals are aware, men are aware, and all in different ways...

At least if it's true what I am feeling right now. :)
Our myths may be misguided, but they steer however shakily towards the true harbour, while materialistic 'progress' leads only to a yawning abyss and the Iron Crown of the power of evil. (J.R.R. Tolkien)
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Mildir »

This is just one side of the whole concept, I think it's possible to describe it in other ways, which represent other sides.

Added later:
Mildir wrote:
Tue Mar 10, 2020 9:53 pm
- How can you be an entity with a role if you are not aware of your role ?
Not true for every entity, right? :blush2:
Is this point proof that I am totally mistaken?
Honestly, I can't be 100% sure that it is.
Is it proof I am unable to make myself clear?
Yes.
I'm tired (didn't sleep), I see all the limits of my attempts (looks like I'm unable to get to the core point).
I won't add more until the whole thing is crystal-clear to myself in the first place :goedhoor:
Our myths may be misguided, but they steer however shakily towards the true harbour, while materialistic 'progress' leads only to a yawning abyss and the Iron Crown of the power of evil. (J.R.R. Tolkien)
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Re: Why Lead a Virtuous Life?

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

Mildir wrote:
Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:10 pm
[...] Not true for every entity, right? :blush2:
Is this point proof that I am totally mistaken?
Honestly, I can't be 100% sure that it is.
Is it proof I am unable to make myself clear?
Yes.
I'm tired (didn't sleep), I see all the limits of my attempts (looks like I'm unable to get to the core point).
It's definitely true within the method of categorizing things, or can be made true by selecting the categorization method ("arrange these objects according to how blue they are by using a color wheel to assign hexadecimal values to each color, then sort"). However, it is also true to say that "everything is a unique instance of itself" which is the default way my cognition tends to operate, whereas yours probably trends according to the first way.

Neither one is 'wrong' (or 'right' either, for that matter), they are just different cognitive modalities.

Tangentially related to this issue of different ways of thinking, I read this paper "Deconstructing Durin’s Day: Science, Scientific Fan Fiction, and the Fan-Scholar" [link] by an astronomer named Kristine Larsen before my last sleep period. In it, she goes into detail about why the text of The Hobbit as written, "The first day of the dwarves' New Year [...] is the first day of the last moon of Autumn on the threshold of Winter. We still call it Durin's Day when the last moon of Autumn and the sun are in the sky together" couldn't happen because (she says) a minimum angular separation of 35 degrees between sun and moon is needed for such a sighting, but "such a moon would be nearly three days past new and hardly the “thin new moon” described by Tolkien".

Well, there are a few things wrong with this statement, the first is that it is factually incorrect. The moon moves about 0.5 degrees per hour in its orbit when measured against the background stars [link], but Islamic people, for whom determining when the first visible crescent is seen is a part of their religion, are seeing it way before 35 degrees separation. Just check some of the answers to questions in this Islamic sighting FAQ [link]. There is also the fact that Bilbo and the dwarves were on the side of a mountain, The Lonely Mountain, in fact, and this increases the tangential sight-line for them, thus exposing a bit more sky. Also, if there were mountains to the west (I don't have a ME map in front of me, so can't say 'yea' or 'nay' to this), those westward mountains could obscure the sun as it was setting, thus cutting off a lot of glare and making it easier to observe a thin crescent moon.

Also, in the same paper, she states the impossibility of Eärendil's star (Venus) being visible all night as the Edain sailed westwards to Númenor. If one is speaking of the visibility of Venus, that's correct. But we are speaking of Eärendil's star, and that adds in shamanic/Dawn people's cognitive mode, wherein it could be seen all night, or down in a cave 2000 meters below the Earth's surface for that matter.

So, as you see, one's cognitive modality has a large impact upon how one both perceives the world and thinks about it.
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