Conclusion

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 That completes the basics of the eonic model. We can proceed to use it to organize a means to survey world history as a total system, and will pursue that with an 'idea for an historical database', in another webpage series. Issues of ideology fly out of the wood work, but we have a powerful means to track all of them. Basically the modern transition revolves around the Protestant Reformation, The Scientific Revolution, The Enlightenment, and liberal/leftist ideologies of freedom. Our treatment of the discrete freedom sequence gives us a powerful new approach to these issues. Note how the model forces us to examine two universal histories:

1. First we study the eonic mainline
2. Then we study the middle eras and their continuations, relations to mainline.

This enforces balance, if not objectivity. Our viewpoint is likely to be that of the modern secular culture, and t hat is appropriate, but possibly quite incomplete. Everything finds a place. But the modern transition is now some deviation to be cast away in some postmodern reactionary mood. Look at the multiple independent streams and how they intersect with the eonic mainline, e.g. Buddhism and its cousins. There are multiple independent worlds all fretted, but not conclusively totalized by the mainline. These separate streams start flooding into the modern context after the divide, with what future we do not yet know. But it is as important to try and resist retrograde thinking as it is essential to acknowledge the contributions of all previous periods.

Consider the frontier effect and the rise of the West, so-called. We are talking about a total global evolution via some localized areas. The idea of Western Civilization ceases to have any theoretical meaning.

Note the way in which, as observers of the eonic pattern, we are outside the eonic mainline, just after the last transition. It is at first a peculiar way to organize world history: It is in fact a far superior approach to the whole subject.

? unknown earlier transitions
birth of civilization
classical phase
rise of modern ca. 1500 to 1800
current free action?! 

But this is the solution to the problem of historical inevitability and the Oedipus Effect. If we had just made it up that would be one thing, but, amazingly, the data reflects that property. It shows the power of models! Even a humble non-numerical model such as this one. And it is strong evidence of the 'intermittent' or 'eonic' factor.

Note the way the Industrial Revolution and modern capitalism come into existence just around our Great Divide! However, notice that the eonic evolution of civilization is different from the evolution of economies. We see how the larger system produces the groundwork for the subsystem.

There is a catch here, but at least the model gives us a warning. That is that the high potential of the emergent systems in the transitions is at a very high level of sophistication, and we may have declined from these peaks, or made 'myths of transition', the Old Testament being a prime example. We already are starting to have problems with the modern transition, and the postmodern reaction is par for the course. But no postmodern initiative is likely to match the early modern, despite its primitive character.

Lest you take that for granted, consider the issue of Greek Tragedy, which appears in the Axial interval. We see that this is not chance, and that this is a unique emergentist cluster. Noone has ever been able to reproduce this gift of the eonic sequence, save maybe a figure such as Shakespeare, briefly. So their is always a reminder that these stupendous systems are not properly assessed or preserved by the general middle periods between stages of the eonic sequence.

Note how we have produced a powerful case for historical directionality. That is not the same as proving the case for teleology. We suspect we are in a teleological system, but such a statement collides with our Oedipus Effect boundary. So be wary of ideological teleologies. This gives you a powerful means to reconsider such questions.

That's it, as a jumpstart for study of the model in the Second Edition text. Hopefully you will able to locate the pieces and their sections in the text to explore these issues in greater depth.

We can close with a sense that behind this somewhat dry intro to the eonic effect, and the model, lies something truly spectacular, something we had not suspected to exit. World history is a vibrant and living mystery and we have indicated one small gateway to its remarkable enigma.

Most of all let us close by noting how ethical action is reestablished in the context of an evolutionary dynamism. The system action promotes a spectrum of values, and our free action is judged by its performance. We see how misleading is Darwin's theory. The competition among historical agents does not control the future. The eonic mainline proceeds to leapfrog the local present. What that foretells about the future we don't know. But the record in the past speaks for itself. So bringing the highest degree of self-consciousness to the emergence of freedom is the task given in this system. Its tendencies to degrade between transitions is alarming. Beware!