If I were a young man and again had unlimited energy and time (for so it seems to the young, and it isn’t all that untrue, relatively speaking), I think one of my projects would be to write what might be called the suppressed history of the west.
In such a history I would incorporate the things that conventional histories omit because they are considered not quite respectable (that is, things that go against the accepted party line). When you go looking, you find whole threads that are systematically ignored.
Charles Lindbergh had a full-fledged encounter with spirits as a boy of 25 while he was flying alone over the Atlantic Ocean in 1927. Abraham Lincoln had a series of precognitive dreams including one the night before he was murdered. I could (if I had the time) probably find at least one incident in every other autobiography that the author sets down as unexplainable but nonetheless real. All this is swept under the rug, rather than gathered into a skein, because it goes against the party line. It isn’t acceptable.
What political biography deals with matters of ESP or UFOs? What history of civilization reports adequately on societies that are founded for reasons of religious cohesion or spiritual development? What intellectual history deigns to consider (or has the competence to treat) occult societies other than, at most, the sort of exterior gossip that leads one to think the members frivolous, indeed childish?
And what biography dares treat with respect a great man’s excursions into forbidden territory? Yeats was a practicing magician. Jung used the I Ching and studied alchemy. George Bernard Shaw — well, see for yourself. The following quotation is from one of his Fabian lectures of November, 1916.
“The religious man is no longer the man who has hidden his eyes in the bosom of the church, but one to whom God (if he uses that term at all) is an overwhelming intention in the world which he feels mysteriously interested in and impelled to carry out even when it is contrary to his immediate personal interests and intentions. He is no longer an Agnostic, because he recognizes a creative will in the world which can and does produce actual material live cellular tissue when it wants it, and because he not only recognizes a biological movement toward a destination, but perceives that the direction of that movement is always toward higher organization with the apparent object of becoming capable of greater knowledge and power: in short, toward Omniscience and Omnipotence. And as that destination is at an infinite distance, he is not troubled with a horrible fear that we shall presently arrived there and have nothing to do for the rest of our lives.”
See what I mean? You definitely knew of Shaw the playwright, probably knew of Shaw the socialist, but I’ll bet you didn’t know of Shaw the mystic. It’s all part of the systematically suppressed history of our times.