Ecce Homo

It has been a long while since I last posted onto this blog, and that is something I intend to reverse. I’ve gone through many changes over the period of time since my last posting, and although my worldview may be different, the overall guiding virtues are the same.

Over the past twelve years, I’ve been somewhat of a seeker of truth. I’ve follow a path through the forest of this life, encountering many twists and turns that have brought me to my current point. Every day we each takes steps that bring us from who we once were to who we will become, yet those steps are often infinitesimally small and unperceivable in the perpetual present we seem to inhabit.  Its been called the ‘end of history’ illusion – we each believe we’ve achieved significant growth up to our current state, but can’t imagine our present perceptions or thoughts evolving much more in the future.

This ‘end of history’ illusion is something that seems to have enveloped my mind in the time since I finally acquired my bachelors degree. Due to my failures in a relationship I had held very dear, a combination of this illusion and depression clouded my mind to the hope that I and my life would change in any positive way. I was thoroughly set in my ways – I was an anarchic neo-pagan, clouded with disillusionment and the gloom-and-doom that seemed to permeate every thought I had. It was me against the world, and the world seemed to have already won.

Over time I began to spiral in onto myself in my thoughts. Having been raised and educated to question every piece of information I come across, I found myself questioning the very basis of my long held beliefs. ‘Why do I feel that neo-paganism was correct?’ and ‘Why do I advocate anarchism, or revolutionary thinking?’ were my primary questions. I had questioned authority for so long – but with the job I have worked in for the past year, I am authority. I finally realized how hard it is to control people, despite it being in their own best interest.

What I ultimately arrived at was that I had felt wronged by society, that I was a victim and an ‘other’. Throughout my formative years I had been bullied, and throughout my relationships I had been taken advantaged of. In hindsight I would call it a victim complex. I had blamed Western civilization, Christianity, and my own recent (as in the past 2000 years) ancestors for the problems I dealt with. “If only they hadn’t won…” I always thought.

But it started to change on me when I finally realized that my problem had always been with modern culture. I had always looked back through history and had wished I live in those times rather in these. What are my problems with modern culture? Its baselessness, its lack of ‘objective truth’ other than in a skewed sense of equality. I don’t deny science or the equal God-given rights to ever human, in any way – but I felt that religions, traditions, and cultural institutions of the past gave people more guidance for their everyday lives despite the fact those lives were much more rigid in freedom.

In my attempt to fight back at modern culture, I had always clung tightly to neo-paganism and a fantasy aesthetic, combined with a love of all things post-apocalyptic. I still feel as though climate change, dwindling resources, financial crises, and various  threats of violence may bring about a collapse of society, but my hope has been renewed in what I would consider the sphere of Western civilization. both within and outside it. Perhaps we are on the cusp of a new dark age –  instead of joining the barbarians at the gates, I would much rather be one of the men-at-arms defending it. This is why I have finally renounced the pagan gods for good, and accepted Christ and the Triune God.

 

 

 

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Self Domestication

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Humans are a species of animal that has accomplished the feat of self-domestication, primarily through the use of technologies that have allowed us to extend our natural range, raise our population levels and densities, and eliminate a vast majority of controls. Fire allowed for countless developments, and with the invention of clothing allowed for the expansion of humanitys range into more temperate climatic zones (such as the one we live in, where a source of heat and clothes are necessary for enduring long dark winters). Agriculture, in the form of plant and animal domestication, allowed for the increase of population levels and densities in cultures that acquired them, displacing cultures that were unable or unwilling to accept such knowledge – a cycle that has been repeated with any power-granting technology. The development of increasingly more powerful weapons as well as increasingly more centralized monopolization of force on the parts of chiefdoms, kingdoms, and states has lead to the decrease in day-to-day violence yet a drastic increase in the amount of death due to wars and other state action. Agriculture brought sedentary life, urbanization, and disease, and cleanliness and modern medical technology have gotten rid of it. The industrial revolution brought with it the growth enhancing force of fossil fuels, further strengthening the centralization and power of fewer and fewer states as well as fewer and fewer people. We live in a vastly different existence than the one we were created/evolved to live in, going from true freedom in the greatest sense of the word to a mere illusion of ‘Freedom’ (for the few and the proud, the ones who can afford it) in ten thousand years.

This self-domestication through technological development has shifted us from natural environments in which we evolved to artificial environments that we are maladapted to – environments where we have to use counter-technologies and modified behaviors to cope with self inflicted changes.  Certain biological and behavioral traits were beneficial (or at the very least benign) to human existence until the development of agriculture and sedentary living, and with the gradual centralization, stratification, and increasing complexity of human society and technology. Obesity is a prime example of this maladaptation. In times of food scarcity (most of human history, primarily in cultures in less agrarian societies – think Africa, pre-Columbian Americas, and the South Pacific) it is the ideal phenotype of an individual to be able to gain weight quickly and lose it slowly. Take a mechanized agricultural system that turns oil into calories (extremely inefficiently, might I add) to make an over abundance of these calories in the forms of sugars and fats (that along with salt, are all very rare in the natural environments we evolved and are very needed for proper bodily functioning) and what do you end up with? Epidemic obesity, particularly in populations that had less agricultural activity over their historical development (from their genetic predisposition towards unreliable food sources).

I think about this stuff constantly. I wish I were free and ‘indigenous’. I wish I could have a relationship with the land, with the water that runs through it and the life that makes it its home. I wish I could have relationships with people that were’t predicated on self-gratification, isolation, and electronic bullshit. I wish I didn’t have to live a life I wasn’t born to live. I am a ‘Stone Age’ human maladaptively living in a technological, environmentally destructive, socially manipulative dystopia, and so are all of you.

What do you think? Do you care?