The Muse, autoeroticism in art, modeled by Nina Longshadow at Opus
"We all have these things in common,.."We where given the "Desire to Live,and Reproduce"
Élan vital (French pronunciation: is a term coined by French philosopher Henri Bergson in his 1907 book Creative Evolution, in which he addresses the question of self-organisation and spontaneous morphogenesis of things in an increasingly complex manner. Elan vital was translated in the English edition as "vital impetus", but is usually translated by his detractors as "vital force". It is a hypothetical explanation for evolution and development of organisms, which Bergson linked closely with consciousness – with the intuitive perception of experience and the flow of inner time.
In the Platonic, Neopythagorean, Middle Platonic, and Neoplatonic schools of philosophy, the demiurge (/ˈdɛmiˌɜːrdʒ/) is an artisan-like figure responsible for fashioning and maintaining the physical universe. The term was adopted by the Gnostics. Although a fashioner, the demiurge is not necessarily the same as the creator figure in the monotheistic sense, because the demiurge itself and the material from which the demiurge fashions the universe are both considered to be consequences of something else. Depending on the system, they may be considered to be either uncreated and eternal, or considered to be the product of some other entity.
The word "demiurge" is an English word from demiurgus, a Latinized form of the Greek δημιουργός or dēmiourgos. It was originally a common noun meaning "craftsman" or "artisan", but gradually it came to mean "producer", and then eventually "creator". The philosophical usage and the proper noun derive from Plato's Timaeus, written 360 BC, in which the demiurge is presented as the creator of the universe. This is also the definition of the demiurge in the Platonic ( 310–90 BC) and Middle Platonic ( 90 BC – AD 300) philosophical traditions. In the various branches of the Neoplatonic school (third century onwards), the demiurge is the fashioner of the real, perceptible world after the model of the Ideas, but (in most Neoplatonic systems) is still not itself "the One". In the arch-dualist ideology of the various Gnostic systems, the material universe is evil, while the non-material world is good. Accordingly, the demiurge is malevolent, as it is linked to the material world.
The first and highest aspect of God is described by Plato as the One (Τὸ Ἕν, "To Hen"), the source, or the Monad. This is the God above the Demiurge, and manifests through the actions of the Demiurge. The Monad emanated the demiurge or Nous (consciousness) from its "indeterminate" vitality due to the monad being so abundant that it overflowed back onto itself, causing self-reflection. This self-reflection of the indeterminate vitality was referred to by Plotinus as the "Demiurge" or creator. The second principle is organization in its reflection of the nonsentient force or dynamis, also called the one or the Monad. The dyad is energeia emanated by the one that is then the work, process or activity called nous, Demiurge, mind, consciousness that organizes the indeterminate vitality into the experience called the material world, universe, cosmos. Plotinus also elucidates the equation of matter with nothing or non-being in his Enneads which more correctly is to express the concept of idealism or that there is not anything or anywhere outside of the "mind" or nous (c.f. pantheism).
Plotinus' form of Platonic idealism is to treat the Demiurge, nous as the contemplative faculty (ergon) within man which orders the force (dynamis) into conscious reality. In this, he claimed to reveal Plato's true meaning: a doctrine he learned from Platonic tradition that did not appear outside the academy or in Plato's text. This tradition of creator God as nous (the manifestation of consciousness), can be validated in the works of pre-Plotinus philosophers such as Numenius, as well as a connection between Hebrew and Platonic cosmology (see also Philo).
The Demiurge of Neoplatonism is the Nous (mind of God), and is one of the three ordering principles:
Before Numenius of Apamea and Plotinus' Enneads, no Platonic works ontologically clarified the Demiurge from the allegory in Plato's Timaeus. The idea of Demiurge was, however, addressed before Plotinus in the works of Christian writer Justin Martyr who built his understanding of the Demiurge on the works of Numenius.
The ancient philosopher Plato developed an idealistic concept of eros(love" in this original sense can be attained by the intellectual purification of eros from carnal into ideal form. This process is examined in Plato's dialogue the Symposium. Plato argues there that eros is initially felt for a person, but with contemplation it can become an appreciation for the beauty within that person, or even an appreciation for beauty itself in an ideal sense. As Plato expresses it, eros can help the soul to "remember" beauty in its pure form. It follows from this, for Plato, that eros can contribute to an understanding of truth.
Eros, understood in this sense, differed considerably from the common meaning of the word in the Greek language of Plato's time. It also differed from the meaning of the word in contemporary literature and poetry. For Plato, eros is neither purely human nor purely divine: it is something intermediate which he calls a daimon.
Its main characteristic is permanent aspiration and desire. Even when it seems to give, eros continues to be a "desire to possess", but nevertheless it is different from a purely sensual love in being the love that tends towards the sublime. According to Plato, the gods do not love, because they do not experience desires, inasmuch as their desires are all satisfied. They can thus only be an object, not a subject of love (Symposium 200-1). For this reason they do not have a direct relationship with man; it is only the mediation of eros that allows the connecting of a relationship (Symposium 203). Eros is thus the way that leads man to divinity, but not vice versa.
[...] Nevertheless, eros remains always, for Plato, an egocentric love: it tends toward conquering and possessing the object that represents a value for man. To love the good signifies to desire to possess it forever. Love is therefore always a desire for immortality.
Paradoxically, for Plato, the object of eros does not have to be physically beautiful. This is because the object of eros is beauty, and the greatest beauty is eternal, whereas physical beauty is in no way eternal. However, if the lover achieves possession of the beloved's inner (i.e., ideal) beauty, his need for happiness will be fulfilled, because happiness is the experience of knowing that you are participating in the ideal.
Libido (/lɪˈbiːdoʊ/), colloquially known as sex drive, is a person's overall sexual drive or desire for sexual activity. Sex drive is influenced by biological, psychological and social factors. Biologically, the sex hormones and associated neurotransmitters that act upon the nucleus accumbens (primarily testosterone and dopamine, respectively) regulate libido in humans. Social factors, such as work and family, and internal psychological factors, such as personality and stress, can affect libido. Sex drive can also be affected by medical conditions, medications, lifestyle and relationship issues, and age (e.g., puberty). A person who has extremely frequent or a suddenly increased sex drive may be experiencing hypersexuality, while the opposite condition is hyposexuality.
A person may have a desire for sex, but not have the opportunity to act on that desire, or may on personal, moral or religious reasons refrain from acting on the urge. Psychologically, a person's urge can be repressed or sublimated. On the other hand, a person can engage in sexual activity without an actual desire for it. Multiple factors affect human sex drive, including stress, illness, pregnancy, and others.
Almost all of us at least once in our lives, during a sleepless night or an illness, have heard a voice which, coming from nowhere, and as it were, speaking silently, gives us advice — usually very wise advice. It is always when we are in solitude and most often at moments of exaltation that this silent voice speaks to us. Certain men of spiritual genius have heard this voice so plainly and so often as to make them believe that an intelligent being was about them, directing them with inspired counsel. The Greeks called this intelligent being by the name of “daimon.”
For instance, we know that Socrates possessed a personal daimon. “The favor of the gods,” said Socrates, “has given me a marvelous gift, which has never left me since my childhood. It is a voice which, when it makes itself heard, deters me from what I am about to do and never urges me on.” He spoke familiarly of this daimon, joked about it and obeyed blindly the indications it gave. Eventually, his friends never took an important step without consulting it. But the daimon had its sympathies, and when it was unfavorable to the questioner it remained absolutely silent; in that event it was quite impossible for Socrates to make it speak.
Of what order is this daimon, which manifested itself to Socrates in childhood but was also heard by Apollonius of Tyana only after he had begun to put into practice the Hermetic principles? “They are intermediate powers of a divine order. They fashion dreams, inspire soothsayers,” says Apuleius. “They are inferior immortals, called gods of the second rank, placed between earth and heaven,” says Maximus of Tyre. Plato thinks that a kind of spirit, which is separate from us, receives man at his birth, and follows him in life and after death. He calls it “the daimon which has received us as its portionment.” The ancient idea of the daimon seems, therefore, to be analogous to the guardian angel of Christians.
Possibly the daimon is nothing but the higher part of man’s spirit, that which is separated from the human element and is capable, through ecstasy, of becoming one with the universal spirit. To an organism that has been purified, therefore, it’s daimon would be able in certain conditions to transmit both the vision of past events, the image of which happens to be accessible to it, and that portion of the future the causes of which are already in existence, and the effects of which are consequently foreseeable.
But the fact that the daimon had preferences among Socrates’ friends, that it chose between them, seems to show that its intelligence was different from that of Socrates himself. Socrates often said that this inner voice, which many times deterred him from doing one thing, never incited him to do something else. Now, it is a rule among adepts never to give any but negative advice; for he who advises someone to do a thing not only takes upon himself the burden of the consequences but also deprives the man he advises of all merit in the action.
Apollonius believed that between the imperfection of man and the most exalted among the hierarchy of creation there existed intermediaries. One of his intermediaries was the ideal of beauty that we make for ourselves, an ideal that is formless but is nonetheless real on another plane of life. This ideal was the daimon, the reality of which became the greater in proportion as the idea of it became the more powerful in its creator’s mind.
Thus a sculptor with intuition who had a knowledge of magic might, in certain conditions, be able to give form to a creature of ideal beauty begotten by his own ideal. In order, then, to steep oneself in the perfection of this creature there would be two methods: either to actualize it on the terrestrial plane by giving it a form; or to enter its ethereal domain by divesting oneself of form through the transformative experience of ecstasy. It may be that certain workers of miracles who possessed an amazing secret used the first method and lived with a divine companion whom they had themselves made visible to their own human eyes. But they kept their secret to themselves. Those of them who spoke of it were regarded as mad and were imprisoned or burned. There were others, too, whose soul was impure and thus created caricatures of the ideal and were haunted by monsters resembling them. The Middle Ages, when methods of ancient magic were still being handed down, are full of stories of men possessed, tormented by their own demons, which, once they were created, never died and attached themselves to their creator.
Without doubt, the alchemistic philosophers, the Hermeticists, and all the mystics of the Neo-Platonic school, used the second method. They entered the ethereal realm by divesting themselves of form and ego. They sought the beauty of the soul, strove to find the radiant inner ego, and thanks to the impetus of their ecstasy, they sometimes attained their aim.
The Greeks called that distant voice within us, that higher source of inspiration and enlightenment, a person’s daimon.