Katehon, Hexagram and Manifest Destiny: Three Names for the Axio-Epistemo-Political Triangle

By Quan Le


I was inspired to write the following lines after having read some candid words produced by MK Bhadrakumar, an author who also was a distinguished former member of the Indian Diplomatic Corps. In the the article ‘A Sino-Russian Military Alliance is Gratuitous, As of Now’, Mr. Bhadrakumar wrote: “Neither Russia nor China has a colonial past. They have been imperial powers but their greatness didn’t come out of slave labor or plundered wealth out of Africa, West Asia or the Southern Hemisphere. This important distinction is at the core of today’s geopolitical conundrum.”

A word about the sub-title of this current report.

The term ‘Dynamics’ comes from a Greek word we can interpret, among other things, as ‘engine’ and as ‘interaction’.

“Tempus” is the Eternal Dimension of the Divine Kingdom shining forth as Truth, Goodness and Beauty (TGB).

“Kairos” is the unique channel between the Dimension of Timeless Forms (BGT) and the Phenomenal world of space-time called Chronos. Kairos might be translated as “the right time” (good moment & Good) but let’s not fall into the trap of believing that Kairos is both a moment of danger and opportunity at the same time. The crisis is only the trigger for a possible Kairos manifestation but is not the gist of it. Kairos is essentially an eruption of the Divine Dimension and of the cardinal virtues, meaning Valor, Justice, Wisdom and Humanity (also called Moderation) into Phenomenal Reality (Chronos & Cyclos) made of energy-matter as usually understood but also of energy-matter labeled as unawareness, anger, greed, jealousy, pride and confusion.

Living in a land under the management of a pervasive and multi-continental political entity I facetiously call the KFC-AZAEL (Kakistocratic Feudal Conglomerate of the Anglo-Zio-American EstabLishment) where the word Empire is theoretically a six letters dirty word in mainstream thought and parlance. I often find myself in a lexical dilemma because of what I perceived as a certain conceptual if not existential schizophrenia compounded by the fact that Empire is, I confess, not a dirty six letters word for me. That is to say, I do not see it as intrinsically a thing of evil. Let me explain myself.

For the plebs living in the lands governed by the KFC (Kakistocratic Feudal Conglomerate, short version for close friends), there is an array of symbols, a sophisticated lexicon, a profusion of elaborated rituals upholding the glorious and everlasting “democratic/republican” narrative extolling freedom of speech, diversity (among other things diversity of thoughts… I don’t know why but the expression ‘Overton window’ just popped out in my mind) and free elections, etc.

But for anyone having read with a modicum of attention and seriousness books on philosophy, history and geopolitical, it will be evident that the KFC is at the center of a military empire called NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization). NATO acts as a dumb giant guided and influenced by the KFC’s pundits and grand strategists who do the thinking while this military behemoth does the dirty work. One shining example of the KFC’s grand strategists, is the late Zbigniew Brzezinski (1928-2017) who offered us his remarkable meditations in those two immortal works worthy to be perused with admiration and awe by this generation and future ones : Grand Chessboard (1997) and Strategic Vision (2012). Brzezinski, probably not having my juvenile proclivity and sophomoric humor, called the KFC (Kakistocratic Feudal Conglomerate) the GAS (Global American System). Dear reader, I let you decide which acronym is most appropriate. KFC or GAS, that is the question!

So we have a military empire ruled by a relentless plutocracy enthusiastically involved in a global exploitative and extractive endeavor having rampaged for at least the last 3 centuries and keeping on… It is not unreasonable to declare that the KFC (Kakistocratic Feudal Conglomerate) is the modern incarnation of the British Empire.

It is not surprising that the new Anglosphere does not allow the use of the word “empire”, at least not in polite society.

MK Bhadrakumar wrote that Russia and China were imperial powers but having created their greatness without slave labor and looted wealth from, let’s say “people less naturally endowed with the talent for organized violence.”

But let’s come back to my bizarre liking of the word “empire”.

From where comes such a strange if not questionable taste? For a person having read many history books, notably history books on Russia, China and Iran, I realized that great endeavors in gigantic spaces often needed a profound cohesiveness of the people with their leaders & sovereigns. That cohesiveness was often achieved by the idea of “Empire”, ideally ruled according to the highest principles and promoting the participation of everyone according to each ones’ capacities.

It is here important to break from the common popular definition of empire as a hegemon enslaving the weak in order to evaluate another type of empire in world history that is too often left ignored. This is a species of empire that contained a sort of living chivalry code. But how is it possible?

Here I would like to introduce a Russian word coming from Greek: Katehon (or Katekhon).

“Katehon” first has eschatological implications and coming from verses 6 & 7 of the second chapter of Paul’s Letters to Thessalonians’.

The Greek meaning of ‘to Katehon’ translates ‘that which withholds’, and within the New Testament, this term directly refers to ‘that which withholds the arrival of the Anti-Christ’. The broader meaning concerns everything going into the direction of developing spirituality and civilization, orchestrated by the apparatus of a powerful and majestic state recognized as legitimate by the peoples living in such a state because the very system made possible by such a structure creates the foundation and the daily framework for the journey of the soul when on Earth in a body. Using Platonic jargon, Epistemological Development is equivalent to the Journey of the Soul from infantilism and materialism to full wisdom and maturity. Yet another way to think of this process is the march to a sovereign mind.

I am unable to translate Katehon with only one word. I need three English words I put together : Nation-Empire-Civilization.

NATION means a people sharing the same continuous cultural matrix going back centuries if not millenia. It’s the anthropological and cultural dimensions.

EMPIRE in this context means the perennial majesty of the State and its devoted servants creating peace & order, security (in all dimensions: food, clothing, housing, transportation, energy, etc.) and a quality classical education (a journey to Truth, Goodness & Beauty). This more refined definition of empire than the brutish versions usually flaunted also demands that military might be used with awareness, and political clout never abused. Additionally, cultural influence and transmission of positive cultural dynamics to neighbors is vital within any legitimate empire (as well as the adoption of positive cultural dynamics FROM neighbors in turn).

Here the word “Empire” is very closely associated to “Civilization” and not understood, as in the Anglosphere, as a global exploitative and extractive endeavor by a relentless plutocracy.

*CIVILIZATION is the essential spiritual dimension. It’s the Journey of the Soul or Epistemological Development, personal and collective. It’s the dynamic educational framework creating the true timocratic men (aka: a man motivated by justice & honor), the aristocratic men (aka: a man motivated by discovery, inventivity and creativity) and the philosophical men (aka: a man motivated by creating the virtuous men). It’s the axial endeavor of traveling from the animal kingdom to the divine kingdom which itself points to the destiny of the human species.

The Katehon or Nation-Empire-Civilization is the practical achievement in space-time (Cyclos & Chronos) of the Axio-Epistemo-Political Idea (Tempus & Kairos). The Katehon is an Eternal Idea having espoused History.

Let’s elaborate on the Axio-Epistemo-Political Triangle. Imagine a triangle.


At the center of the triangle, visualize a circle.

Inside the circle we have the Pure Forms of Truth, Goodness and Beauty on the inner circumference.

That’s the ‘axio’ component which means the axiological dimension (fancy words for ethics, coming from Axis Mundi).

On the lower half of the outer circumference of the circle, attach the words “Wisdom & Valor”.

On the inner circumference, upper half, we have Humanity & Justice. It’s still the axiological dimension, first the three Foundational Forms (Truth, Goodness and Beauty) of the Fabric of the Universe and the Four Cardinal Virtues emanating from them.

The three Foundational Forms realize the weft of the Universal Fabric and the Warp is made of the energy-matter from Phenomenal Dimension either as particles of space or decayed light from the Timeless/Eternal/Divine/Noumenal Dimension.

When the Light is Original, it’s part of the axiological dimension. Original (from the Source) White Light is the Omniscient Wisdom. Original Blue Light is the Wisdom of Ultimate Reality. Original Red Light is the Discernment Wisdom. Original Yellow Light is the Equanimous (Sameness) Wisdom. Original Green Light is the Accomplishing (All-Realizing) Wisdom.

Light rays in prism. Ray rainbow spectrum dispersion optical effect in glass prism. Educational physics vector background. Illustration of prism spectrum light and rainbow refraction

The decayed lights are the first manifestation of energy-matter of the Phenomenal Reality, the second manifestation of energy-matter are simply the particles of space. Let’s return to the decayed colors of the Phenomenal Reality.

PHENOMENAL MEANS THAT WHICH APPEARS TO THE SENSES, THE SENSES INCLUDE THE INTELLECT, the wording, conceptual and imaging Machine. That wording Machine is part of the Human Body, the most beautiful biological Machine in the known physical Universe. A biological Machine is also called an Animal.

Drab blue light corresponds to Unawareness also called Ignorance. Drab red light is Greed. Drab white light (grayish) is Anger. Drab yellow light is Pride. Drab green light is Jealousy. There is another decayed and fragmented green light corresponding to Animal Dumbness (Confusion, not to mix with Unawareness also called Ignorance). The force fields of those decayed phenomenal lights will shape & organize the particles of space creating the so-called physical universe. As Lyndon Larouche (1922-2017) wrote in his book The Science of Christian Economy : “Substance is effective Cause, effective Cause is Substance”. Don’t forget that the decayed lights come from the Original Lights and the proportion of Original Lights (the Principal Weft of the Universal Fabric) capable to interact with the Phenomenal Reality in space-time (the warp of the Universal Fabric) depends on the specific cycle of the present Universe, different from the other Universes of the past cycles and those of the future cycles.


This dimension has three DYNAMICS (engines/modes of exploration and interaction)
These three Dynamics appear at each of the three inner corners of the Triangle. They are : THEORY OF KNOWLEDGE in the upper inner corner. HEURISTICS in the inner lower left corner and HERMENEUTICS in the inner right corner of the Triangle.

THEORY OF KNOWLEDGE comes from the Greek word Theôria, meaning the contemplation of the Pure Forms (Truth, Goodness, Beauty). This means that ALL TRUE KNOWLEDGE IS A DIRECT EXPERIENCING GRANTED GRACIOUSLY BY THE SUPREME SOURCE OR THE SUPREME SOUL when one has enough awareness-energy to be capable receiving them graciously as the Supreme Soul gives them graciously, being a role model for us.

HEURISTICS is the playful exploration of the many pathways to discover, to invent and to create.

HERMENEUTICS is the endeavor to ascribe to Phenomenal Reality a Human Meaning.
Maybe Common Sense is a possible acceptable equivalent. To my knowledge, the Indian Poet Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941) gave the best explanation in his book ‘The Religion of Man’ (speeches compiled in 1931).

Rabindranath Tagore

The REAL is the Human Meaning given to measured FACTS fecundated by the PURE FORMS of Truth, Goodness & Beauty. “The Human Soul answers to the Call of the Real by enriching measured Facts with Truth, Goodness & Beauty. “

Now imagine, on the inner side of the baseline of the Triangle, six lines organized as three short horizontal lines at the bottom separated by an empty space from three short horizontal lines at the top. The three bottom lines are called 1,2 & 3 from the bottom (Line 1). The three top lines are called 4,5 & 6 from the bottom (Line 4) too.

I will use the Chinese concept equivalent to KATEHON to explain the epistemological dimension or epistemological development because its structure made it easy to illustrate this epistemic progression from Line 1 (at the bottom) to Line 6 (at the top) using the Confucian words of the Analects on the Psycho- Cosmogram/Hexagram created 30 centuries ago by King Wen (1112 BCE-1050 BCE) of the Zhou Dynasty (1046 BCE-256 BCE). He was a feudal lord/’Leader of the West’, his suzerains from the Shang-Yin Dynasty (1600 BCE-1046 BCE). He proclaimed himself King in 1059 BCE. His son Dan, Duke of Zhou & Confucius (551 BCE-479 BCE) were also the authors of the I Ching. His son King Wu conquered the Shang-Yin.

This concept is the HEXAGRAM and is the graphic representation of the fourth section of the second chapter from the 论 语 (Lun2 Yu3) meaning The Analects ( coming from Greek Analekton : Selected Sayings ). Selected Sayings by Noble Master Kong, 孔 夫 子 (Kong3 Fu1 Zi3) or the Latinized form of Kong Fu Zi being Confucius. I will start from the end of the paragraph because it will follow the presentation from Line 6 to Line 4 as The Upper Trigram or the Eternal Dimension or Divine Kingdom and from Line 3 to Line 1 as The Lower Trigram or Phenomenal Reality. Upper Trigram and Lower Trigram form the Hexagram, the Chinese way to say Katehon.

THE UPPER TRIGRAM (Lines 6-5-4 from the top). The Upper Trigram is the symbol of the people having a Sovereign Mind, living centered in the Eternal Dimension, more refined at Line 6 than at Lines 5 & 4 ( Second half of the fourth section of the second chapter of the Analects, from the end). Confucius’s spiritual brother living at the Western end of the World-Island, Plato (427 BCE-347 BCE), called THE UPPER TRIGRAM : EPISTEME, meaning Science or Knowledge.

THE LOWER TRIGRAM (Lines 3-2-1 from the top of the Lower Trigram). The Lower Trigram is the symbol of the people not yet having a stable Sovereign Mind, living centered in the Temporal Kingdom of space-time and are invited to the Journey of the Soul (First half of the fourth section of the second chapter of the Analects), from the end. Plato called THE LOWER TRIGRAM : DOXA.

The ages proposed by Confucius are symbolic, needless to say.
TGB : Truth, Goodness, Beauty.



Let’s remember our Axio-Epistemo-Political Triangle…

At the left outer corner of the triangle are the letters MC for Mythology & Cultural Axis
At the right outer corner of the triangle are the letters MD for Modelization & Diplomacy
At the top outer corner of the triangle are the letters ME for Military & Economy

Mythology & Cultural Axis are the products of storytelling, creation of narratives, images, music, 3D objects, etc. contributing to the identity of a group (groups of 150 people, 100 million people, 1 billion people etc.) by promoting favorite values, specific norms, revered ideals and heroic models, among others things. Let’s not forget that ‘mythology’ comes from Greek ‘muthos’ meaning ‘a story’ and ‘culture’ from Latin ‘colere’ meaning ‘to worship’ : the worship of the proposed models, ideals, norms & values. Worship is not a dirty word, someone can worship blindly for sure but one can worship because the talk has been walked and the spontaneous worship comes from the immense gratefulness for having been kindly guided to Truth, Goodness and Beauty. The quality of the mythology and narratives will depend if the Eternal Forms of Truth, Goodness & Beauty have been brought forth from within in a sufficient number of individuals in a given society and that they have the reasonable material conditions to express their inner reality.

Modelization means the conceptual apparatus and the imagery accompanied by their corresponding emotions-aspirations created in the readers serving to define relations between people and groups of people within a society and relations between societies or nations. The Modelization offered by Zbigniew Brzezinski (1928-2017) in his book ‘The Grand Chessboard’ as opposed to the one offered by St-Augustine (354-430) in his book ‘The City of God’ will produce very different fruits, needless to say…

Diplomacy is simply the practical exercises in daily reality between individuals, groups or nations based on the specific accepted or imposed (by brute force or rather mostly by unconscious/subconscious mental conditioning) Modelization(s).

ME for Military and Economy needs no explanation in the context of my article.

A word on the notion of Manifest Destiny.

This expression is associated nowadays in the minds of most people with hubris, arrogant exceptionalism, entitlement, neo-colonial wars and relentless exploitation. At its origin, it had the meaning of the inevitable Journey of the human Soul from the Animal Kingdom to the Divine Kingdom with the respective Axial, Epistemological and Political manifestations.

So, the Axio-Epistemo-Political Triangle can be expressed in at least 3 different ways :
Katehon, Hexagram & Manifest Destiny. It did not escape the attentive reader that Katehon is from Russia, Hexagram is from China and Manifest Destiny is from the USA. I focused on these 3 nations because they are the most powerful states in the world at this time in history. It would be of the outmost urgency that they find a way to reach to a working relation, especially between the US & Russia and the US & China.

China & Russia for now are rather in a very special moment, so nothing to say here.
I am a reasonable man, I don’t ask for brotherly affection or love, a true and sincere working relation would be most satisfactory. And who knows, it might evolve to mutual respect, friendship, brotherly affection and love… Life is full of surprises.

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