tisdag 5 augusti 2008

On "Orientalism"...

Dear Peter and Parviz

I believe you have completely misunderstood me on this issue.
I do NOT use the terms POSITIVE versus NEGATIVE in any VALUING sense.
Positive is NOT better than negative.
It is about the outlook on the world and whether this outlook is correct or incorrect.
If you truly believe that LIFE primarily is suffering and that nirvana is GOOD; then your take on life is of course NEGATIVE (while your outlook on death as opposed to life is positive) which through a good living should be turned around to a positive content (extinction).
Contrary, if LIFE and existence in itself is good (and extinction is negative) then your outlook on life is POSITIVE.
Perhaps sometimes it is better to ask for a clarification rather than jumping to conclusions. OK?
This division IS the difference between Mazdayasna and Brahmanism as so many before me (like Arthur Pearlstein) have pointed out. The question is not which one we prefer (this is after all not a shopping exercise in a supermarket but rather something extremely serious) but which outlook is correct and true (we are searching for the truth).
As for Edward Said, he has some wild theories, according to me, unfortunately he falls into his own trap and ends up being another "orientalist" himself. His division between east and west is extremely constructed and limited to a specific Anglo-Saxon discourse. Precisely as contemporary Zoroastrians around the world, we are proof that Said's theory has many apparent holes in it. Zoroastrians are NEITHER east nor west but evidence that the division in itself is widely false (just like there really IS no third world).
But hopefully that was Said's ambition: To make his own theory redundant.
I'm still waiting for an author to write a reponse called "Occidentalism". ;-)


2008/8/5 Parviz Varjavand
- Dölj citerad text -

I have to agree with Peter here. I find the divide along Mazda-Yasni and Div-Yasni line much more meaningful than a divide along any other line. If you like that line of divide, you must keep alert not to assign positive values to Mazda and negative ones to the Div either, but that noting the difference between the two is what is important.

Parviz Varjavand

"Peter M. Schogol" wrote:

> And it seems only logical that the negative outlook on existence of Brahmanism (and Hindu theology
> in general, including Buddhism and Jainism) is a non-Indo-European influence.

Hello Alexander and all,

I believe what Edward Said had in mind in his book ORIENTALISM could be summed up by your comment to the effect that everything positive about the East had to have something in common with the West. With the greatest affection I want to point out that there is a sort of creeping racism in the formula Indo-European = good; non Indo-European = not so good.


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