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Cicero says that to philosophise is to learn how to die. There is a special sense in which we should understand that—and the sense in which we should understand it can be clarified with reference to Albinus, philosophy is “the soul’s liberation, rising above the body.”

Only he who has died to the mortal world can speak truthful words—only he can speak with wisdom, because he has transcended the mortal plane. This is what it means to be a “lover of Sophia”—a lover of lady philosophy.

It is as when I looked at my reflection on the train back home from Didcot. As I looked, I became outside my body—I watched my body as if it was just another body, just another person on the train. I disidentified with it—I was no longer the pain in my feet, or my memories, or my thoughts. I was separate and free—“the soul’s liberation, rising above the body”.

As Plato observes, the philosopher by “holding conversation with the divine or divine order becomes himself...divine.” And hence only the philosopher “is most like God.” The Christians, of course, added “as far as is possible for man”—they added a lie; not being philosophers, not being those who know, not being wise, but only being believers (fanatics).

What this means is to die to the body and only identify with consciousness—you are literally a dead man walking, only consciousness, eternal and without spatio-temporal location, constitutes reality. It is pure and taintless, being above thought or desire—it just is.

So look at your body and say, “This foot is dead, this arm is dead, this thought is dead, I am dead—how can a dead man feel fear?”. This is liberation—for man identified with his desires and passions will never speak the truth.

Schizophrenics experience this to an extent because they go through “unauthorised gnosis” or “uncontrolled gnosis”—it frightens them because they don’t know what has happened to them. They speak of “being dead” or how “everyone around them is dead”—or a robot, or they are “a robot” (alienated from matter, they see their body as a dead body).

They have awakened—or almost awakened; hence they also receive supernatural powers associated with the purified magical will (schizophrenics are often psychic or have telepathic abilities—“thought penetration”, “thought broadcast”).

The philosophical position is connected to divine kingship because the Cakravartin, the divine warrior-king of the Europeans, must overcome his fear of death as a spiritual act in preparation for war—only then can he speak in a truthful way. There’s wisdom in war, and war in wisdom.


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