The Daemonic Wound

1,

God relates to the world both through Eros, his right hand [the ‘correct’] and by the Daemonic, his left hand [the ‘sinister’]; both are ways God loves all that he has made.

2,

However, when God Daemonically stretches toward us, it is a different matter. Even if it is true that the ‘essence’ of God — God qua God — is immune to all risk, or trouble, nevertheless in relation to human beings, God takes on something very different: God takes a risk with us, and the world, which requires personalness, heart, passionateness, to sustain it; and this becomes what God burns into our poor human clay, to make it God-bearing, despite its earthiness. The Spirit finds material it can seize, violently, and upon which it can burn, explosively. When we see only the spiritual light, it is often because the spiritual fire that is radiating it outwards has not yet emerged on our horizon, and crossed our path. It will. The light only heralds the fire that is coming.

Martin Buber describes it=

“The world is not divine play, it is divine fate. That there are world, humanity, the divine person, you and I, has divine meaning. Creation happens to us, burns into us, changes us, we tremble and swoon, we submit. Creation– we participate in it, we encounter the Creator, offer ourselves to him, helpers and companions. Revelation does not flow from the unconscious, it is master of the unconscious.. It takes possession of the existent human element and recasts it..”

Such is the Daemonic.

Without the Daemonic, divinity would have no dynamic outreach toward, and relationship with, the human heart, hurting and moving it in equal measure, in order to rouse our personal willingness and kindle our heart’s passionateness. The Daemonic God is the God of the heartbreak, which means, the God of the deeper heart, the heart that is an unfathomable abyss, the heart with a God-shaped hole.

The Daemonic God forces us out of our head, and anchors us in the difficulty and hardship of the heart.

Without this wound of the Daemonic, which is also the existential blow of fate, we would stay in the head; and with a head lacking the heart to root its feet in the hard ground of existence, the heartless head would proceed to concoct metaphysical abstractions of deity– expansive but vague airy spaces into which we can float free from the earth, attributing to them any metaphysical qualities we like, such as ‘eternity’ and ‘infinity’, and others, including the Greek ‘impassibility’ — which implies an ‘above it all’ plenitude, impregnable and unchanging. This metaphysically invented ‘god’ can be fullness or emptiness, a cosmic pudding or a cosmic void, it makes no difference, because such metaphysically ‘neutralised’ [and neutered] deity loses all capacity to affect us, or be affected by us. Instead of the ‘passibility’ arising due to God affecting humanity’s heart, and humanity affecting God’s heart, which creates a story of naked black and white as well as of vivid colour, we get the faded pastels, and bland white outs, of a deity that has withdrawn from the arena of this world into a bloodless abstraction– and the whole point of that abstraction is that it is safe from us, and we are safe from it. No story will ever be told about such a divinity and us that would have anyone on the edge of their seat. The abstraction floating somewhere at a distance from the terrors and pathos of life is not only bloodless, but depersonalised, so it is safe and calm, nothing to get anxious over or to be concerned for. This ultimate ‘something or other’ was mocked by William Blake as the ‘Nobodaddy’– nobody’s daddy. The ‘theism’ of his day [1820] had turned in this direction, but the pseudo mystery of god-as-abstraction can be theistic or non-theistic; indeed, it works better non-theistically than theistically, in many respects. The Great Vapid that fills the mind with lift off, but has no ontological gift for the soul, nor any existential burden for the heart, is a vacuous god, a god of vacuity. This is the only flimsy ‘divinity’ many people today can tolerate, given the deadness in their soul, and the aching absence in their heart.

To be abstracted out of the existential danger, and cutting edge, of this world is ‘salvation by existential de-situation.’ A deity that is some sort of ill-defined abstract entity is preferable to the God of the heartbreak.