Posts Tagged ‘spirituality’

Faith Through Nihilism

Tuesday, January 10th, 2017

To most people, there are only two options: inherent belief to human purpose in the universe, or an absence of anything resembling purpose or belief. The latter are commonly called nihilists.

A sensible version of nihilism cuts to its core, which is distrust of all things perceived through the human mind:

Nihilism is the belief that all values are baseless and that nothing can be known or communicated. It is often associated with extreme pessimism and a radical skepticism that condemns existence.

The fundamental separation here occurs through the recognition that values, communication and truth are proxies or intermediates for reality. Our brains will recognize conclusions about the world, encode them in tokens and share them with others, but then the tokens become more important than results in reality. The same happens with money, popularity, religion and systems of control.

For this reason, nihilism is not what most people think it is, which is giving up on knowing reality at all or caring about the consequences of our actions. Instead, it is a refusal to let the human symbols for reality supersede reality itself, a condition known as solipsism which is the root of most common human errors.

Since most people are solipsistic, they want an excuse to give up on reality itself, not its proxies. They do this by strengthening the proxies instead of focusing on reality, or cause-effect results in the world outside our heads. One way to do this is a fanatical “anti-relativism” that emphasizes devotional truths, but the other is fatalism, or proclaiming that all reality is pointless except that in the human mind.

The kiddie form of nihilism arises from this, and ends up being a brew of individualism and anarchism, or essentially an individual without obligations to be correct in his or her statements. This allows the individual to justify inaction and selfishness as some form of “higher truth.”

And so, what does nihilism say about faith? First, it rejects the idea of any belief; in other words, there must be a source of spiritual understanding based on the world and its patterns, much as we know anything else. Next, this spiritual understanding cannot be communicated, only achieved by those who go along the path of cumulative learning.

Nihilism thus rejects exoteric faiths, or those based on the idea that we can communicate metaphysical or spiritual understanding through tokens, or that faith can be adopted on that basis. Religious texts can inform our understanding, but the source of the understanding comes from finding similarities between what is there and what exists in the world.

The root of metaphysics through nihilism is the same radical skepticism toward humanity that is found in most religious texts. Most humans, being monkeys plus language, have low capacity for analytical thinking or any real passion. Instead, they focus on the ego, externalizing choice to factors such as bodily impulses, socializing with others, and following what the group does.

An examination of the external world however reveals a potent clue: patterns, not physical matter, rule the day. That is: matter arranged in patterns has properties beyond its immediate physical presence, and these patterns can appear in different forms of matter and have the same effect, which means that patterns are more important than materiality.

The classic example of this is a chair. It can be made out of wood, stone, metal, plastic or even human bones, and still serves the same function. The design of the chair — four legs, a platform and a back — is where the magic lies, not in the plastic or bone. In the same way, forms of organization of groups or ideas have greater power than what they are written on or the tokens used. The idea is all.

From this realization comes the first honest spirituality. When life is seen in terms of patterns, those patterns can be compared and arranged, showing how reality is structured. This is separate from purpose, because that is a choice of the individual human, but those choices reflect the moral composition, intelligence and honesty of those individuals.

In turn, this places an emphasis on thought, or at least thought that is consistent with the world around it, making it a continuation of the world in the mind. Here a fine line arises: the world is thought, but not just any thought, since most human thought is a closed-circuit feedback loop of the impulses of the body and ego, and unrelated to the broader world.

When one sees the world as thought, something better than inherent purpose emerges: a sense that the world is calculating, or transacting change toward an ongoing end like evolution itself. Our thoughts take the same pattern, which is that many options emerge and are slowly whittled down to a final model, which is then refined qualitatively or in terms of degree of efficiency, accuracy and elegance.

At that point, the world takes on a new perspective. Instead of the world being the cause of thoughts, thoughts — or the evolution thereof — are the cause of the world, and it reveals its tendencies toward beauty and goodness through the seemingly endless creativity of nature and the many possibilities it gives us.

Through eyes that have realized this truth, a forest becomes not just an object of beauty, but a sense of beauty joined to function, revealing a pattern of thought that emphasizes something we can only call holiness. It takes us beyond the requirements of mere utilitarianism and shows us that the universe points in a different direction, toward an experience of greatness and existential pleasure.

With that, we realize that life has given us a clue: it is not random after all, nor is it ugly. Instead, it is us that are ugly. We resist a world that would push us to greater heights because we fear losing control. And yet, the world tries for beauty, which is how we know that we are immortal and that striving for excellence is worthy. Only then do we join the eternal pattern of our cosmos.

Christian Reaction

Tuesday, December 13th, 2016

As Neoreaction fades into a type of extreme Libertarianism that guarantees it will be absorbed by demotist forces with credit cards instead of ballots, more are considering the basic idea of Reaction itself: that modernity, based in equality applied by government, is a path to suicide and that we need cultural, religious and leadership guidance instead.

One form that appears fascinating is Christian Reaction, or the group of Reactionaries who base their worldview in a resurrected Christian nation instead of a purely leadership or cultural solution. The good side of this is that what they advocate is necessary and positive; the bad side is that sometimes, it can replace other things that need to be done, and become a scapegoat or false solution.

Where the Christian Reactionaries are most correct is at their core, which has two parts:

  • Morality. Civilizations die because their citizens become individualistic after there is too much tolerance for not-good people, usually during wartime or plagues when extra hands are needed. The natural tendency of civilization however is to increase social order, so that more survive, and to spare lives from the horrors of the pre-civilization era. The only way to restrain this natural entropy is to have a society that is morally alert to all transgressions, no matter how small, and constantly shedding those who are inclined toward any path other than good. This seems too extreme to most, so they settle for throwing out the extreme bad instead of generally removing the failed, and Christian Reaction has no patience for this.
  • Self-Discipline. Spiritual practice occurs through the denial of impulses and a redirection of that energy toward wholesome things. In particular, prayer and meditation increase focus, especially among the intelligent, who are otherwise prone to become chaos monkeys indulging in personal pretense and thus splitting society into many directions, few of which are relevant. Christian Reaction emphasizes personal growth through self-discipline and the necessity of it as a basis for society as a whole.

At the end of much of philosophy, we arrive at these two concepts as the only way to slow or prevent civilization decline. It cannot be done with authority alone, nor by filtering out the bad alone, because it is necessary to redirect the normal and intelligent toward the good, including things that seem “un fun” like chastity, relative sobriety, pride in tribe, and focus on moral goods — aspiration to excellence — above all else.

Unfortunately, Christianity today is a ruin and it has been for many centuries. In particular, the Catholic popes interfered with the absolute rule of the kings, introducing the kind of committee politics that specialize in making bad decisions in order to avoid upsetting the varied special interest groups sitting at the table. At this point, almost all churches are fallen, chasing Leftist ideals as a vain hope for restoring the people who once attended, forgetting that people come to church for the kind of discipline, purpose and guidance that only religion can provide.

In particular, the Catholic churches are worst about this, identifying with the victim narrative and opposing any kind of strong and healthy power that might compete with the church and papacy. This makes them toxic in every way and prone to thwarting the exercise of necessary changes. Traditional Western European focus is less Protestant than anti-Catholic, as we saw with the Nativist movements and the conversion of much of Europe. The popes thwarted the kings, and so sensible people ejected the popes.

Many on the Christian Reaction front call sensibly for a renewal of Christianity through a return to its core focus, including its Greco-Roman, Nordic Pagan and Hindu roots, among the many other influences that were compiled into the Bible. The point here is to not get caught up in specifics and rules, but look at the purpose of the religion, which is a meditative realism leading to transcendental understanding.

Some advocate a monistic Christianity. This is important because its opposite, dualism, argues for the presence of two worlds: a perfect heaven and an imperfect earth. This causes disregard of what happens in this world in anticipation of the next, and conveys the notion that the rules of this world are nonsense or illogical, both of which propel Christians toward emotional but unrealistic paths.

If Christian Reaction has its way, a future Christianity will be both more militant and more naturalistic. It will not fall into the easy excuses of being individualistic or ignoring the world. It will be an active, warlike Christianity that even Fred Nietzsche could approve of. For this reason, even metaphysical skeptics have reason to explore Christian Reaction.

Evidence Versus Logical Fact

Monday, December 12th, 2016

Bruce Charlton writes, as always, an insightful analysis of human mental self discipline. In it, he argues the following:

  1. Perception is regulated by conceptual understanding. What we know how to recognize in the flood of data coming in from our senses, we can mentally process. Everything else slips by into chaos.
  2. If true knowledge is possible, it must come from valid concepts. Because these can be shared between people, they must exist outside of people, or be in the world like neo-Platonic forms.
  3. Therefore, those who think purely in terms of concepts will be accurate, which means that we can think without evidence and achieve understanding of the universe.
  4. In essence, pure conceptual thinking is how we understand reality.

Charlton attributes this schema to Rudolf Steiner’s early philosophical book The Philosophy of Freedom, but alert readers here will recognize the actual root of this idea: Immanuel Kant and his idea of intuition as the basis of a priori understanding.

In my own writing, specifically the unpublished Parallelism, I expand on the basic concept of the black pill and how it leads to understanding reality.

Humans have big brains, and those receive stronger signals from themselves than the world, which is a problem especially because we know the world through our memories of it, encoded as tokens based on our conclusion of the relevant parts to us. This comes after we filter the world, as Charlton notes, through what we know to look for, living in “a representation of a representation” as Schopenhauer argues. We never come in contact with the raw data because it would be like trying to drink from a firehose and would paralyze our reaction times.

Consequently, any process of understanding involves separating what we know to be true from what is merely signal reflected back from our big brains. We have to navigate our assumptions, emotions, impulses, neurotic mental chatter and tendency toward quick absolute categorical judgments in order to do this, among other perceptual pitfalls and glitches.

At this point, we must consider “evidence” versus “logical fact.” Evidence is what we can derive from our perception, but as illustrated above, it is already heavily filtered through our conceptual outlook. Further, it is based on material factors, such as how parts of reality interact, but blind to pattern which represents the organization of reality and its structure (analogous to Platonic forms). Evidence therefore is best for figuring out how to do things like make gasoline engines or grow crops, but not so good when it comes to questions of understanding reality under the surface formed of the interaction of material objects, like seeds plus water equals plants.

Logical fact, on the other hand, consists of looking at the organization of these material parts and deriving principles about how they work. Mathematics and philosophy are the closest to this field because they analyze patterns and their transformation, but these become difficult because we are unsure that what seems logically true corresponds to reality, which is wily and has twists and turns and emergent complexities. Enter parallelism: the idea that patterns occur in parallel across multiple domains, including thought, energy and matter.

With parallelism, we can see what patterns recur in multiple places in our world, and use these as the basis for understanding new input. This works through a type of metaphor that is more exact than what we expect from language. It requires precision about the nature of each pattern and why it works as it does, animating the structure with an understanding of purpose.

At this point, we are starting to get somewhere. We have a way of knowing what is true beyond any immediate circumstance because we can see the pattern in multiple places and its function or role is consistent. At that point, we are able to discipline our thought to being like that of the universe, and in so doing, realize its logical basis. As discovered by the German Idealists, the universe behaves in a thought-like way, and appears to respond at the level of structure as we would expect thoughts to do so.

Now we have moved beyond materialism. We see first the world as a function of order or pattern, and next, that structure as resembling thought, which works by having multiple impulses and selecting whichever one is compatible with everything that already exists, or is parallel to the rest of structure. This enables us to see the universe as having an inherent mode of operation and intent, one that is initially foreign to the world of human intent, which reflects our interests within the structure as we perceive them without knowledge of that structure.

This in turn requires us to look into what the intent of the universe might be. It seems to specialize in making beauty out of nothingness, but also, by holding to a hard line of logical fact that punishes that which deviates from compatibility with its order. Through processes like natural selection and entropy, it destroys that which is disorganized and reshapes the rest into greater degrees of order, balance and efficiency.

From this vantage point, we can see the nature of a divine force or something like one: benevolent in intent, rigorously logical in method, and focused on urging us upward toward greater order, versus our tendency as human monkeys to scatter in divergent chaotic directions in pursuit of our personal illusions, desires and other artifacts of having a lack of focus toward the divine. We are evil not because we mean badly, but because our thought and thus behavior is not disciplined.

Since we have ventured into metaphysics, we might take a look at an old theorem of Plato’s. We can see cause-effect relationships in everyday life, but now we know that these are a product of a thought-like structure to the universe, which like a computation seeks to resolve a problem constantly in order to refine itself; think of a self-programming computer, always testing its own code to find what works better, and replacing the old code with the new, more precise algorithms.

This means that in addition to regular cause-effect relationships, there is a bigger cause-effect relationship formed of compatibility between patterns and a steady pressure toward upward organization. This no longer acts like self-interested material objects, but a purposeful Designer who is starting us as dust and working us toward a god-like level, or as close as we can get.

In addition, we know that this causal space of pattern is much larger than the physical objects in which it manifests, meaning that our material world is the smaller part, and the world of thought much larger, implying not a dualistic “second world” but an extension to this one formed of the patterns as the universe intends them, not our perceptions of them. In this space, which is so large as to be infinite, information matters more than material, and here we see that the presence of our minds as information agents can have applicability beyond our physical selves.

None of this was unknown to the ancients, but then again, instead of checking Twitter every thirty minutes, they were sitting in darkened caves in deep thought guided by regular breathing and a suppression of the chattering monkey creating a background hum inside our heads. Clarity of thought, and eventually metaphysical experience, came naturally for them.

As we look toward peeling back the layers of the onion that is modernity, realizing that it started from a lie and that the only way to beat it is to head in a contrary direction, it makes sense to return to this focus on meditative understanding of structure. It does not contradict the realistic imperative that we adapt to material reality, but shows us a stage in which to go once we achieve basic sanity, and a basis for a spirituality which does not — like almost all existing forms of religion — lead us further into the illusion of ourselves.

Further Thoughts On The Richard Spencer Speech At TAMU

Friday, December 9th, 2016

The important thing about the Alt Right is that — contrary to appearances — it shows the right growing up and merging its two threads, opposition to delusional Utopianism on one hand, and its resistance to “modern society” on the other.

Few are willing to mention the truth about the West, which is that it is soul-killing. Jobs are spirit subjugation; the cities are ugly; all of our products are designed to take advantage of us and deprive us of the function of that product. What kind of rising technological empire cannot make a refrigerator that lasts longer than ten years?

In the hands of the proles, the vote went to the people, and this seems to empower whoever wants to treat the population as a cash cow and milk it for all that it is worth. Governments are self-interested businesses, but so are regular businesses. All want to extract the most cash out of the population through deliberately broken policies, which then require more money to try to make them work, and planned obsolescence. The reason for this that these organizations are comprised of people, and each person wants a job forever and more money and power, and they are given an aegis of public interest behind which to engineer theft.

In social situations, people do the same thing. The name of the game is to take all that you can and externalize the costs. People are inept and do sloppy work, knowing someone else may have to clean it up. The ultimate modern symbol is litter because the citizen who enjoys his pleasures and then leaves behind a mess has externalized the cleanup, making him seem victorious for having taken more than he has given. All of these problems arise from a lack of purpose to society, which leaves it as a group of conflict special interests warring it out for power at the expense of the normal working population who just want stable lives.

We like to talk about how democracy freed us from insane wars and totalitarianism, but we live under “soft totalitarian” circumstances where the wrong opinion means losing jobs, home, family and friends; we also have under democracy embarked on two World Wars and many proxy conflicts in which nothing was permanently resolved. Our future is one of endless war in which those who fail to affirm the Narrative and its ideology are treated as enemies of the state, enforced through fear of collective punishment in which others shun the heretics in order to avoid being associated with heresy. Our modern life is more controlled than life under fascists or National Socialists, and seems to have replicated the conditions in the Soviet Union, albeit with better shopping and slicker products that nonetheless break after a few years.

In this modern totalitarian state, we live in misery. Jobs are jails because there is no focus on the end result, only appearances. This puts vicious manipulators in charge and marginalizes those who try to be efficient and do their job and get out with more free time. Those who spend the most time at the job succeed, even though this by definition implies inefficiency and ineptitude. The person who designs a product which is cheaply made and heavily advertised wins, because the highest margin of profit is achieved, while quality products are beaten out of the market because it is always easier to find ten idiots willing to buy junk than one person who values performance over price.

Most people are insane as a result. In order to handle a necrotic society of this nature, they must rationalize it as good, which means accepting dysfunction as function. This makes them prone to spend even more time on pointless activity and to resent those who do not, against whom they retaliate. Their search for some substitute for purpose and meaning causes them to become perverse and fetishize all sorts of broken behaviors just so they can feel important and that their lives are worth living, which furthers social decay.

The core of the revolution against modernity is realizing that our thinking is backward. Instead of finding positive goals and directing economics and society to achieve them, we work by attending to demotism — consumerism, democracy, popularity — and assume that it finds the right answers. Instead, it discovers inferior substitutes and makes them mandatory norms, which ensures that most of our time is wasted fighting back against the vast waves of dysfunction around us.

We need to discover values and purpose again. This requires identity, which is the core of Spencer’s speech: Amerika is not great because it is rotting from within, and the core of that rotting is the herd of cultureless, purposeless, and raceless grey lumpenproletariat that Leftism manufactures. We have no goals, nothing to strive for, and it is killing us. We either discover identity — which requires the most basic foundation of identity, which is race and ethnicity — or we are doomed to be nothing but servants to an ideological empire which values mediocrity and compliance over life itself.

In ideology, life is a means to an end, which is ideology. This circular reasoning turns us into “free” slaves toward the Utopian ends of our leaders, which are in public expressed as egalitarianism, but in private the profit taken from pitching an ideological product that people want, and from that, by achieving power and wealth as career criminals like the Clintons, Obama, Merkel and others demonstrate. Our leaders do not care about the results of their actions, only appearances, because like corporations selling planned obsolescence products, they are shilling a cheap substitute that the herd will buy in order to take profit out of the civilization.

We are ruled by parasites, and by our own hand. Who has sympathy for the worker? Any time a “free” government program, union benefit, or socially dysfunctional reduction of standards comes along, the workers vote for it because they perceive it to be in their interests. They are shocked and amazed when the free stuff turns out to have costs, and those costs make workers too expensive, so business offshores and outsources as a means of avoiding the parasitism. They blame business, but in this area, business is innocent; the parasitic nature of the voter/worker has driven them away in order to remain competitive.

Under the publicly permitted dialogue, we cannot say that we lack purpose and allow economics, politics and popularity to lead us around like a domesticated animal. After all, what is popular is perceived as us, but this fragments when we look around and see how we have little in common with others. That leads us to realize that we either choose values-first, or we end up with methods-first, which is the type of “means over ends” analysis that is favored by both the Left and people who fear that having goals will make them appear as having fallen short.

Spencer pointed out the root of this mentality:

America is not great because in my lifetime, America has lost an essence. It’s lost a people, it’s lost a meaning. You listen to presidential inaugurations, these are these times when presidents will go up and tell us “what this is really about” and get everyone fired up, they don’t talk about America as an historic nation and a people with a story, as the product of a race, of a worldview, they basically talk about America as a platform for all of humanity. They talk about America as an economic system, effectively.

He identifies the failing of the Right in America as occurring sometime over the previous century when it shifted from a perspective of “a people” to the notion of “an ideology,” but instead of accepting Leftist socialism, made capitalism the root of its belief. That created a permanent fusion between Left and Right because they both agreed on ideology over realism, and within that, wanted a hybrid of the capitalist state and the liberal social programs of Europe and the East.

That in turn represented a shift toward the herd mentality of the third-world and especially Asia, as exhibited to the West first by the Mongols. Third world societies tend to be defined by a lack of social order, and instead a need for strong power and granular power, usually a matriarchy. This enables them to hold themselves together despite having no unity, but the cost is that exceptional leaders and innovators are scarce if evident at all. This keeps them in the stage of doing the same things over and over, not improving.

This trend fits within the general path of the West for the past thousand years. With fixed civilization and excellence, people began to thrive, but this created a population bloom in which few had the aptitudes of the founders that enable them to collaborate. Western Civilization began splitting into different Special Interest Groups a thousand years ago, and with The Enlightenment,™ formalized this to the level of the atomized individual. With that, the roots of a rootless time were formed.

Modernity is thus not so much a technological level, but any time based on the intent of the individual instead of a collaborative will to thrive. Paradoxically, the intent of individuals forms a herd where collaboration does not, simply because groups of individuals converge on a lowest common denominator, which like the third world consists of everyone doing what they want except when it comes to whatever principle holds the society together like a fence around chickens, and that becomes sacred in a way that nothing else does.

That foundation of Control creates people who are incapable of independent thought and dependent on the herd for guidance, and creates an unhealthy focus on popularity and emulating others as a means of being included in the group. It is a pre-civilization state, not like hunter/gatherer wanderers, but like a civilization that has given up on the principle of civilization, which is working together to make life more pleasurable, intense and sacred. Not surprisingly, the flight from civilization ultimately manifests in a selfish mob manipulated by cruel parasites.

Spencer elaborated:

Americanization, in this worst possible sense of the word, this is what Hillary Clinton was talking about when she said she wanted a “hemispheric open market.” This is what George Soros and Mark Zuckerberg want. They want an undifferentiated global population, raceless, genderless, identityless, meaningless population, consuming sugar, consuming drugs, while watching porn on VR goggles while they max out their credit cards. Don’t deny that that is the kind of passive nihilism that so many in the elite class actually want. They want a world without roots, they want a world without meaning, they want a flat grey-on-grey world, one economic market for them to manipulate.

With this, he positions the Alt Right against Modernity, which is what Right-wingers have been wanting for centuries. We dislike the industrialization of the countryside, the concentration of people into cities, the loss of traditional virtues and knowledge, and the rootless modern city where people are dedicated to self-pleasure that makes them miserable through its lack of meaning.

Modern society can then be described as meaningless because there is no purpose to civilization, and without that, each person is an island in himself. This in turn reverts human behavior to that of monkeys, self-interested to the point of excluding everything else, and gives us with no way to “reach out” to things of importance, including excellence in the physical and metaphysical realms. People will not give up the pretense and rationalization that this is good, because it gives them a sense of power — think of the One Ring in Lord of the Rings — but become existentially miserable.

The Right has traditionally espoused time-proven types of social order, heritage/identity, hierarchy, transcendental visions of nature and religion, and a pursuit of excellence as means toward not just functional society, but human thriving. These give us firm guidance and a sense of some things as immutably important such that we do not mind sacrificing for them, even before we realize how important they are to our own happiness. This is how to build a civilization, and with our retreat from it, we have failed; however, we can rise above that state.

This leads us to wonder what the soul of the West actually is. Some say it is conquest and aggression, others piety, and still others mention a sense of order, balance and harmony within a natural golden chain of being. All of these are true, but in my view, the root of the West is that it is reflective: we stop to reflect on life, and require meaning from it, because that is how we motivate ourselves to survive the difficult and rise above challenges.

Western man, by virtue of being reflective, discovers all these other aspects of life as parts of a natural order which make life significant to us. It is more than “human nature”; it is the mathematical structure of life itself that requires a center, constant struggle to affirm principles, and a hierarchy in which those who are best rise to the top so all may benefit from their insight. This in turn leads us to an understanding of an order to life, the interconnection of its parts — structure, design, form — as being more important than material, and that leads us to spiritual and mythic understanding.

Spencer has in the past pointed to the root of our downfall as “individualism,” against which he posits an aggressive realism. We must not project ourselves onto the world, but accept it as is, and then we see what we can do with it, instead of creating fantasy worlds of Utopian ideology and then insisting that others treat them as real.

This leads to a riff from Bruce Charlton that is both not quite correct, and more importantly, a good guide for the future. In his view, the Alt Right must tackle spirituality:

I don’t see it as plausible that there can be any fully-Christian mass movement from where we are now – which is a situation in which public discourse does not admit the objective reality of anything at all outside the material realm – everything else is psychological, subjective, labile, and manipulable.

Thus a secular Alt-Right will inevitably be simply a different version of Leftism; a Leftism which has different materialist priorities, and panders to a different set of subjective emotions as a means to that end.

(Indeed, my impression is that most of the Alt-Right are exceptionally materialist, positivist, anti-altruistic and reductionist in their outlook – taking a positive delight in simplification of politics to their own power, security and well-being — only to be shared, grudgingly, with those who directly assist this agenda.)

The idea of the Alt Right as materialist only makes sense when one takes into account that political learning is an arc and not a binary where one steps over an exoteric threshold and suddenly understands everything. The Alt Right is a bewildered people emerging from the Utopian dream of Leftism to realize that they had been seeing the world in symbols alone, and realizing these are empty, attempting to find the hidden meaning in reality. This is why some of us suggest the black pill as a means of removing the illusion which is communicated like a virus through social contact, and from that position of absolute emptiness, rediscovering reality.

These are all thoughts for the future. As Spencer pointed out, the Alt Right arose from the Leftist assimilation of the Right, causing those focused on sanity to reject the Right and Left alike and look toward a new beginning. That new beginning means that the Alt Right is nascent even as it appears to have certain conventions graven in stone, and that it has a future to discover through recapitulating the history of reaction, ancient conservatism and traditionalism.

On our way back from the event, we stopped in Brenham, Texas to visit the tobacco barn and enjoy some of the local scenery, despite discovering how much modernity has ravaged this isolated outpost of beauty. Of course, no Texas road trip is complete without a stop at Whataburger (pronounced roughly as “water burger” by locals). One does not have to believe in signs to imagine that the universe was winking at us.

How To Restore The West

Monday, November 21st, 2016


Bruce Charlton writes a plan for ending the decline in the West:

The implication is clear – which is that no constructive change is possible until after there is an ‘us’, as well as a ‘them’. We first need to undo the corruption of spirit which pervades almost everybody in The West. We need to make an ‘us’.

We don’t need to undo Leftism in everyone all at once (which is anyway impossible) – but there does need to be a start made; there needs to be a substantial number and proportion of people, a cohesive group, who actually have repented and reformed themselves sufficiently; who have identified their own key errors and sins, and repented them; there needs to be a group of (more or less) spiritually enlightened people.

…This is why I keep banging-on about the absolute necessity for Spiritual Awakening – and that this must come first. It must come first because if it does not come, then we will just be having Left-versus-Left office politics, and Establishment infighting – jostling for power to impose various rival brands of Leftism.

Looking at this from a more abstract level, what we need is a sense of Us and a will to do what is excellent, instead of what merely accommodates human feelings.

Spiritual outlook is undeniably part of this, but before on can undertake a quest to understand metaphysics, there must be a will toward survival and with it, a desire to understand life as a pleasure, not an obligation.

In the view of life as pleasure, one sees obligations — food, shelter, water — as “means to an end,” with that end being the experience of life. Similarly, one wants to have the best experience of life possible, which requires a drive beyond utilitarianism, such as an impulse to excellence.

From this moment, one finds oneself asking the question: What would ideal life look like for me?

Our immediate answer involves peace, security, plenty and other items of material comfort. Let that one float in the air for a few moments, and doubt starts to appear. We already have those things, and they are not difficult to achieve.

Out of the silence comes a more nuanced and disturbing answer: we also want greatness, and with it, some prospect of adventure. The cozy suburbs are only meaningful once you have seen the chaos of the world and fought with it. We need mountains to climb, enemies to vanquish, and things to fix and improve.

Think of the people you know. How many of them go nuts for old military movies, Westerns and re-runs of This Old House? People need challenges. They need something to rise to. They crave difficult tasks, even if — at first mention — they claim otherwise.

The spiritual revolution of the West begins with the realization that we need an Us based not on the backward-looking notion of “doing good” as the Left describes it, but on aspiration and soaring to new heights.

That in turn begins with identity. Nationalism serves a cultural and spiritual role through identity: creating existential framing and self-esteem. From that we can say, “We, all of us, like to do these sorts of things.”

A nation or civilization is at heart nothing more than a collaboration. People come together on shared values and mutual ability to contribute toward making them happen. When the West lost its purpose, this declined.

The reason the West lost its purpose is simple: we succeeded at our first purpose, which was to form a functional civilization. After that, we fell into boredom and depression. Then the decay came, and it has been gaining on us for a thousand years.

Now, as the Kali-Yuga ends, people are again discovering purpose. With that, they rediscover life is a pleasure, the need for nationalism, and the utility of spirituality. Only together as a bundle do these things have meaning.

The long years of horror are ending. Modernity is a horror not because of technology but because in the absence of purpose, we filled the void with our own egos. “Me first” became more important than excellence, beauty and goodness. To hide that fact, we created ersatz versions of those things through Leftism.

But for this renewal to continue, it requires our effort. As Charlton points out, it starts with a conception of Us that includes positive, forward logic. In this thought scheme, we think of what we desire as ideal and make it happen, instead of reacting to what exists now and using it as an argument for what we should do.

This is a fundamental revolution in thought the likes of which has not been seen for many centuries. It will unnerve most people. Now is the time for all of us to unite on this simple concept, and push it further toward existence.

The Essence Of Supernatural Thinking

Thursday, September 15th, 2016


The question of the supernatural boils down to a simple metric: is the world organized by material, or by information?

If it is organized by material, then bits of stuff just bounce into one another and create what we know of as reality. Opponents call this nihilism because it believes in no ordering force. Intelligent Design tries to work around that by saying that a cosmic chess-player designed those material pieces to create an emergent order.

If it is organized by information, material is the canvas through which order is expressed. This suggests that what happens in reality is more of a calculation, or interaction between material parts to derive informational results, than a pre-planned order. It is both emergent and animate.

The argument for an underlying mathematical or informational order to reality is separate from the question of purpose. We are agents of choice by virtue of being alive; we make choices based on our ability to perceive and our honesty in doing so; there is no inherent right or wrong, but those who choose to pursue reality find it has much to teach.

In discovering reality, one finds oneself look at structure or patterns, and comparing what one knows of how things work to what is seen. This can lead to a perception of an underlying system of order:

A lot of people don’t realize what’s really going on. They view life as a bunch of unconnected incidents and things. They don’t realize that there’s this, like, lattice of coincidence that lays on top of everything. Give you an example, show you what I mean: suppose you’re thinkin’ about a plate of shrimp. Suddenly someone’ll say, like, “plate,” or “shrimp,” or “plate of shrimp” out of the blue, no explanation. No point in lookin’ for one, either. It’s all part of a cosmic unconsciousness.

The above, from the movie Repo Man, is designed to be humorous, but illustrates the basic point: either we think there is a principle of organization, or not. If there is a principle of organization, it is not material.

This presents a quandary to our highly material minds. We work from the original material, which is our bodies and their needs, and inevitably extend that into the social sphere because it is composed of other bodies like us. Bodily needs and desires are universal; contemplative analysis of the order of existence is not.

But over time, we see how patterns repeat. How those implicate other patterns. And how, at the heart of it all, the entirety of existence appears to be alive.

Bruce Charlton illustrates this with his insight into synchronicity:

But this understanding of synchronicity assumes that Life is nearly-all discrete, granular, autonomous and unconnected events: just ‘bits’ of information.

In contrast, synchronicity is ‘telling’ us the opposite about Life – that in reality our Life is a web of relationships between conscious entities – like a dream.

The point of synchronicity is really very simple, and does not need decoding – because it is not a informational message. Synchronicity is the sudden awareness that Life is a web of connected and purposive relationships; and that there are many entities around us involved in these relationships – things as well as people.

The division comes down to the alive-ness of life. If you sense that reality acts like an organism, pieces of the puzzle start to fall into place. This is an esoteric understanding, however, and not accessible to most. But, as many of our smartest and best people have discovered, it is the understanding which unites all the parts of reality.

This seeming paradox exploded into public consciousness with quantum mechanics, which affirm an order which works outside linearity and likely, outside materiality:

Some claim that it shows quantum mechanics implies action-at-a-distance, period. Others maintain that we can still avoid action-at-a-distance by denying that quantum mechanics is a theory about a reality in space and time. Either way, the consensus is that Einstein can’t have what he wanted – a real world in space and time, without action-at-a-distance.

…Ordinarily, we think that the past is fixed while the future is open, or partly so. Doesn’t our freedom to affect the future depend on this openness? How could we affect what was already fixed? These are deep philosophical waters, but we don’t have to paddle out very far to see that we have some options. We can say that, according to the retrocausal proposal, quantum theory shows that the division between what is fixed and what is open doesn’t line up neatly with the distinction between past and future. Some of the past turns out to be open, too, in whatever sense the future is open.

Interestingly, the most likely solution to this problem is relativity across time as well as space:

Costa de Beauregard pointed out that Alice could affect Bob’s particle without action-at-a-distance, if the influence followed an indirect, zigzag path through space and time, via the point in the past where the two particles intersect. But there are no zigzags like that in standard quantum mechanics, so if we put them in we are actually agreeing with Einstein that the theory is incomplete.

This gives us an interesting model: two events can influence one another across space and time, with each event adjusting itself to match the other, not so much as if they were entangled but as if they were different computations whose results rely on one another. We can see the same effect in microprocessors where a thread is dependent on the outcome of another thread, and must adjust the form of that outcome, for example number of decimal places, based on what is calculated in the other thread.

In my hopefully-upcoming book Parallelism, I argue for another approach: events are not just dependent on one another across time, but can partially create one another through pattern similarity, such that things which are potentially true become true when they find structural counterparts in another event, including a person. In this view, we create supernatural reality from supernatural possibility.

At that point, we have taken the world-organized-by-information to the place where the cosmic idealists of the past visualized it: the universe as a vast informational construct, with a purpose of its own, in which we can by emulating its patterns gain greater power, if we so choose.

Very little in life is simple. This approach is not as simple, popular or gratifying as exoteric liberal Christianity or materialistic atheism, but it is more logical in a world where most is mystery, and the underlying patterns dwarf their material outcomes in importance.

Esoteric Social Darwinism

Monday, August 25th, 2014


Conventional wisdom, science and ancient religion seem to agree on the necessity for humans to overcome their lower impulses and discipline their minds in order to become functional as human beings.

Our lowest impulses are formed of innate motivations to point us toward activities we need to do, like eating, fighting, fleeing and reproduction. Once civilization is formed however these become misdirected because those basic needs are taken care of.

Under a health system of self-rule, we reward those who rise above the basic impulse and instead use self-discipline to make their acts deliberate. These people use an understanding of cause->effect logic to use experience to predict how different actions will change a situation, and thus to choose actions by past results.

For 6,000 years or more the rules of humanity have not changed because not only are humans unchanged, but the situation for intelligent animals is universal. Our animal selves must be controlled by our wisdom, and our emotions must correspond to logic and study of cause->effect. Without that, we act on impulse without a plan and while we seem to do so with impunity thanks to the wealth of civilization, the resulting chaos ultimately dooms that civilization.

Esoteric Social Darwinism holds that we refine ourselves in such a way and thus become competent to make decisions about our future. Until we do that, we are headed downward away from higher civilization toward the anarchy of the wild. However, a paradox exists within this idea, which is that only a few tend to rise above. Those are then ruled by the rest, who herd together into a mob and use their superior numbers to enforce a “no standards” standard of behavior.

Democracy provides an opposite to esoteric Social Darwinism. Democracy is exoteric, or based on entry alone. If you are human, you are equal, and therefore you are presumed to be able to make decisions; this entire line of thought is a ruse to disguise the impulse toward the standard of no standards. With equality we remove the incentive to rise above impulse and thus encourage people to be more perverse, selfish, manipulative, passive-aggressive, cruel, oafish, pretentious and ever other mental disorder of humanity.

What happens with democracy is that instead of society being led by those who have overcome their human pitfalls, society expands to fit all of those who have not. The result is the ultimate inversion of both natural selection and any sense of religious or philosophical “overcoming” of the animal half of our condition: society favors the lower over the higher and quickly abolishes itself. All societies die this way. Tail wags dog.

A leap of faith past faith

Sunday, December 9th, 2012

An interesting trend from past years has seen people who are fundamentally atheists switching to religion.

They are doing it for practical reasons: our society lacks order, religion provides order. A village priest takes confession and knows how to best guide his flock. A church is a place of safety, a rock in a storm that doesn’t shift with the trends, and thus you can rely on it.

Indeed, churches are a lot like conservatism. We don’t believe we can distract ourselves with the novel and trendy because we don’t believe in distraction. We believe in picking our battles, applying ourselves and engaging with our inner heroism to make good results. It’s how we enjoy life.

Liberals and others look for happiness — maybe it’s under the rug? in the cookie jar? — which takes them to a different place. When one wants happiness, life becomes a habit of avoid things that aren’t what one thinks of as “happy.” At that point, it’s a shopping trip for face values that meet the internal wishful thinking of the individual.

Conservatives on the other hand see happiness as an emergent property. You don’t achieve it by crusading for it; rather, you do the right thing, and put your house in order, and find a transcendent purpose in life. Then one day you wake up and realize that you’re content. Then you enjoy being content. Finally you realize you’ve been happy for some time.

It’s almost like we believe in the world, life and the cosmos, where liberals have doubts. To them, life is more of a wretched task. They see most of it as threatening and ugly, so they retreat within. But like all runnings away, this one fails because it leaves them avoiding bad things, not seeking good things.

There are some who insist the antidote to this neurotic state is religion, and that religion can be sought through faith. What is faith? It’s essentially a belief that a God or something like one is the only possible way for this world to come together. It’s a listening to emotional intelligence and intuition. After all, young children intuitively believe in God.

However, some of us are not content with faith. We don’t argue against it, but for our own wiring, we need a logical underpinning to any religious faith we might adopt. But here is where we step off the treadmill: we aren’t talking Enlightenment-style linear logic here. We’re talking about something much older.

When ancient man thought, it was systematic but not linear. He simply considered all of the options not in an order, but by probing the edges of thought and immersing himself in a meditative multi-factor analysis. Modern thought instead operates like a simple matrix: isolate factors, compare each one before and actor, and ignore any synergistic effects which might point to an underlying cause. That is linear logic.

Holistic logic, which is what ancient man used, allows you to consider all the factors at once. Instead of hearing an isolated tone in a laboratory, ancient man heard symphonies. He demanded that his logic unite the stars, the gods and his own imagination. He did not want to reduce, deconstruct and isolate, but he wanted to combine, surge forth and create!

When we get past the modern mindset of linear logic, called rationality, we can begin to think clearly again. The energy spent forcing complex data into simple data structures is over. Instead, we join it all at once. The process called “mythic imagination,” by which we use our imagination to construct metaphorical narratives around the whole of reality, comes from this.

Mythic imagination beats scientific analysis for anything but materials science. It allows us to see patterns, and not just in isolation, but across time and beyond even the material world. At this point, we see how linear causality is only part of the story, and a complex causal system must underlie all that we see and feel.

At this point other puzzle pieces fall into place. We realize how much our thinking mirrors the process of nature. We realize how much of us is intuition, and how distant the body and its urges become when we think deeply. We begin to see the physical world not as a cause of itself, but as the surfacing of a wave, with a vast ocean of thought beneath it producing the impulse to create that wave.

Within this frame of mind, “faith” becomes something different. We see the order of the universe, and see how its origins operate. Then we take a deep breath and question the universe itself. It is a good universe; after all, from no obligation to create anything, it flowered life. This brings us a new kind of faith: the faith that the cosmos ultimately tends toward good.

In that moment, logic and emotion unite with imagination. This is a good place, with underlying causes, and those causes seem to conform more toward the metaphorical notion of a vast sleeping consciousness that dreams us all, and sweeps us up in its care so that we can access the opportunity before us.

Through this portal, we see all religions as metaphors themselves for describing this nature of reality, which is nearly inexpressible. We suddenly have no need for faith, for we have seen the probability of metaphysical origin to all. And thus we take a leap of faith, past faith, and comfort ourselves with the beauty of existence.

Origin of supernatural probabilities

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

A: There is something greater-than-material.

Q: But why?

A: Because it is good.

Q: Which part?

A: The whole. Ignore the parts: focus on how they fit together.

Q: Why does this matter?

A: To choose.

Q: Why?

A: Because we are part of it; there is only One and all are parts of that.

Q: There is no One Removed?

A: There is only One.

Q: But there is war and hatred.

A: Part of the One. Relationship between parts, interaction, process and context.

Q: But there is death.

A: Functionality is more important than persistence.

Q: What of the soul?

A: If it has been created, it exists in the One.

Q: Forever?

A: There is no time at that level. It is a state necessary for time, but not prior to it.

Q: But you are a nihilist.

A: I believe nothing is inherent, no truth can be communicated, and there are no universal values. All is choice. Choice is what defines us, and what in part effects what will be.

Q: Why choose this path?

A: Because the whole is good, I pursue the good, so more good occurs.

Q: Why do you care?

A: Because good is more beautiful than anything else.

Q: And there is no inherent purpose?

A: No inherent purpose, only an inherent process. The singular will becomes dumb parts and reconstructs itself. It is a non-linear, architectonic balancing of all parts against each other.

Q: And if I don’t want to believe?

A: That is your role, and is part of the One. Even opposing the One is One-ness, because you have emphasized its centrality.

Q: The One is divided against itself?

A: In order to be One, it must include both unity and division. All must be included; however, each must meet with the consequences of its direction.

Q: Do you have a metaphor?

A: Seeds scattered on a forest floor. Each chooses its path semi-arbitrarily based on where it lands. None must grow toward the light. Those that do, may prosper.

Q: What is “the light,” for us humans?

A: A unity of the material and tangible and the invisible, abstract and yet also real, while not projecting our own confusion onto reality.

Q: How do we reach that?

A: A process of thinking, testing and accumulating knowledge. The scientific method as a counterpart and parallel to natural selection. The process of thought itself.

Q: And what does that teach us?

A: Beauty is truth, and truth, beauty. The same order is present in all things. That which functions matches this order. High level function is beauty.

Q: And why should we care?

A: Because it is good.