The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World
“I can think of no one else who could have conceived, let alone written a book of such penetrating brilliance”
These are the words that David Lorimer uses to conclude his review of Iain McGilchrist’s landmark work The Master and his Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World. If Lorimer’s praise is justified then here we have a rare and precious jewel in the treasury of wisdom for our times. There is intellectual muscle in the review as there must also be in the book, which is as yet unread by your correspondent. Not to worry, it has certainly gone to the top of the list of must reads. Clearly the book should become compulsory reading for all school graduates who are about to embark either on a career or off to study in one of the universities, which are clearly nothing of the sort. The point being if our universities really were offering and providing UNIVERSAL education as the term would suggest, then this book would not have been required in it’s current form. What they mostly provide is Marxism, materialism and a kind of hyper-masculinised intellectual bullying.
McGilchrist himself provides arguments that are pleasingly nuanced, which you can prove for yourself by watching a short address he gives on the ideas in his book in the video embedded below. A sample of Lorimer’s review follows immediately below.
The divided brain of the title indicates that human beings have two distinctive takes on the world, mediated by the left and right hemispheres respectively. There are evolutionary reasons, explained in the book, for why this should be the case, right the way through the animal kingdom.
Iain explains that the right hemisphere gives the overall context, apprehends things as a whole and is able to take in the new. The proper cooperation of the hemispheres involves the grounding and integrating role of the right hemisphere, with detail added by the left hemisphere and returned to the right for a further integration, or, as the Germans put it, Aufhebung. This means that philosophy should begin and end in the right hemisphere rather than being a purely left hemisphere activity as it tends to be, especially in Oxford. A particularly striking chapter argues for the primacy of the right hemisphere, an idea which may initially come as a surprise to the reader, who is used to hearing the left brain referred to as the dominant hemisphere. The primacy of the right hemisphere implies the primacy of the whole over the part, of the implicit over the explicit and of experience over abstraction.
Here then is some support for the notion of what is being referred to within the walls of this blog as The Quantum Goddess from the halls of higher learning and knowledge, which in this case is All Souls College Oxford. What is most interesting is that in the book: A particularly striking chapter argues for the primacy of the right hemisphere . . . Well alright then! That means on the one hand . . . from a theological perspective, we really, really . . . really need to start exploring the feminine divine, the goddess, the Divine Sophia. God as a Girl and not just as a boy – PRIMARILY. On the other hand of course there is the little matter of our hyper masculinised world-view which has been running us. What goes hand-in-hand with the super macho thing is OF COURSE misogyny – hatred of the feminine.
OF COURSE plenty of people in the real world are starting to try on the flowing garments of the Goddess for size. Just not it would seem, those in power. Those who are gaily legislating on the ongoing murder, death and destruction of large swathes of the environment for example. No cross-dressing in the halls of power amongst our male business, (fundamentalist) religious, and political leaders. The female pollies and business types can keep masquerading as women for the time being. Hmph!
Admittedly this is not as simplistic as . . .Love is a warm puppy. Warm puppies have their place, and so does the salvaging of the way we currently conceive life, the universe and everything. As proclaimed on the banner of this blog We need a refreshing change. If anyone is looking for some powerful and resounding intellectualism to support the current imperative for The Great Turning . . .you will have it with The Master and his Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World – in buckets full. Go on then and READ YOUR HEAD OFF. Or . . .you can even watch an introduction by Mr McGilchrist hisself on the computer telly below. Possibly the most significant bit of audio-visual so far . . .ever. Eh?!!! What’s that you say? This is like watching the Goddess deliver a lecture on the telly. You better watch it.