By E. Ostenfeld
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Additional resources for Ancient Greek Psychology and the Modern Mind-Body Debate
Conﬂicts like this do actually occur in various guises. But combinations of the appeal forms are common as well. Loyalty to Yahweh is bolstered by ontological, cosmological, and axiological reﬂection; clear perception of Brahman is guarded by loyalty to a historical and functional community. A notably smooth blend of supreme appeal motivations underlies the Chinese Axial Age philosophies of Confucianism and especially Daoism. These schools of thought took over the political concept of the mandate of heaven but modulated the discourse on legitimate kingship to a discourse on righteous and enlightened life as accessible to any thinking individual.
As it is not directly practical, neither is it directly personal. The exposure of the appellate subject to the appellant being involves neither loyalty nor hope but only access to the rewards of clear and consistent perception. One can imagine stark conﬂict between these two types of supreme appeal, as perhaps in a militant Yahwist exhorting a reclusive Vedantist to pitch in with the Mosaic social project (buoyed by hope for perfect success in the day of a Davidic messiah) while the Vedantist calmly unravels each of the Yahwist’s claims as a species of world-illusion.
Such suppositions must interest us as long as we are willing to be open to appeals, and they offer capstones for the rational architecture of ideals. But they threaten us in that they may be inadequate, false, and inept. And religious appeals come in ungovernably competing versions, each in its concrete presentation answering, rather than merely fulﬁlling, the intention to seek a greatest state, each eliciting a unique response in its concrete relation to a different appellate subject or community.