A while back I was considering the notion that angels and demons existed as intelligences operating at a different “level.” That is to say by analogy, if one considers an intelligent ant colony, then we are the ants to the the colonies demons and angels. That is to say, the demonic and angelic operate or interact with humanity as an emergent entity not so much as on an individual level.

Interesting idea or not, I’ve recently heard something that indicated that this idea is not new and in fact not in accordance to how these matters were viewed in early antiquity. Christian thinkers and writers in that period spoke of three realms. The angelic, the noetic, and the earthly. It seems clear to me that any emergent or other such behavior of humans would at best in the noetic realm … and a lot of it would be in the earthly.

That my idea is different does not make it a priori wrong. But it does give me pause, because these people who were thinking this, while not having the particular notions of emergent behavior did have the gist of it, in positing the noetic as a thing different from the earthly (which I take as the physical). That is to restate, smart people have different notions and it is clear that my notion is different. Especially inasmuch as I haven’t been thinking too long or hard about this, means I’m more likely wrong then they.

Filed under: Mark O.

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