“The Happening” Won’t Fix Your Problems

Everyone knows someone who is convinced that a society-wide catastrophe would be the first necessary step to a general improvement in the political situation, at least in their opinion. Such a belief makes some intuitive sense on the individual level — it is said that addicts need to hit ‘rock bottom’ before they reform themselves. What is unfortunately more common, on the historical level, is that nations, countries, and societies tend to make the same mistakes repetitively, until they are annihilated by some combination of competitors, natural catastrophes, and other competitors.

On the biological level, we are aware of the millions of formerly existing species that have gone extinct. If you have a passing familiarity with history, even former great nations, empires, and tribes have found themselves either eliminated or absorbed into larger political communities.

While on the individual level, salvation, or a person turning their own life around, may occur in some situations, at the group level, it’s not something that occurs frequently. The history of the decline of Rome is a long, mostly unbroken succession of flailing, corrupt, and insane leadership that tended towards lower and lower levels as the centuries rolled along. In time, many technologies and areas of knowledge either dispersed or were lost for centuries as political and cultural dissolution made the former level of civilization impossible to maintain over a large territory.

Of course, the Aeneid, one of Rome’s founding myths, was a story of rebirth after collapse — it ascribes Rome’s founding to fleeing members of the Trojan royal family following the annihilation of Troy by the Greeks. In this context, the entire rise of Rome was told as a sort of revenge story for the destruction of that great mythical city.

Genesis has more than one apocalypse story. Exodus is all about the rebirth of civilization in the desert. Every once in a while, the gods decide to strike a city with pillars of flame, drown all the inhabitants, or help out some dozens of boatloads of invaders to wipe you out. These things happen. Hell, sometimes your wife ignores your specific instructions, and then God turns her into a pillar of salt, just to show that He’s the boss.

It is much more frustrating to try to resist the forces of fate (whether or not you see them as metaphorical) than it is to make like Aeneas and set out for new lands, or otherwise carve a piece of the old empire off for yourself. Christianity itself replaced the classical pantheon with that of a new God, along with new laws. When the Empire split and then fell into chaos, the new Europe grew amid the ruins. Fate trumps the strength of the human will.

The end of everything you know is not going to solve any of your problems — it’s more likely to create problems for you that you never even thought of anticipating. Turnover happens in history, and that tends to create new groups of winners and losers. Sometimes those two groups stay mostly the same.

There are entire swaths of the earth where everything has sucked for more than a thousand years, and no number of local happenings do a damned thing to even make the dust taste a little better when it blows in your mouth.

The mind tends to crave knowledge of the future that it can never really have, and humanity as a species tends to ignore prophecy, even when it proves to be accurate. If you’re going to stir around the chicken guts, sniff the tea leaves, or head into a cave to have a chat with an angel, in most cases, most people are not going to pay any attention to you, and if they do, it’s to string you up, toss you out a window, or nail you to something for public amusement.

Nonetheless, we do our best to guess at the direction of the future, and to make the right decisions based on our estimations.

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10 Comments

  1. I think there would be two objections to the basic argument here. Within the context of a Christian cosmos, there is no fate, but providence. Given the knowledge of an ultimate justice in the universe, apocalyptic events always take on the character of the renewal myth, given a sufficiently long horizon of understanding.

    Secondly, from the classical point of view, fortuna is not necessarily the ultimate trump card. The essence of the national founder or in this case, the national reformer (in the sense of reformatio, not modern lukewarm “reform”), is that his virtú enables him to assert his will upon history, at least for a time. Caesar, Napoleon, or any number of such men prove the point that these are not only apocryphal figures like Romulus. Even when they personally fall, their legacy lives on for generations. To quote Machiavelli’s Discourses, these men “grab the whore [fortuna] by the hair and ravage her.”

    Certainly, the existence of such a man is not something that can be predicted or assured, and falls of empires lead to bad times. The Exodus story has its 40 years in the desert before the Hebrews are reformed into a nation, and centuries lay between the fall of Rome and the rise of Charlemagne. Some places never emerge from barbarism, true. Those places are not the West. The West is the only civilization in human history with a self-awareness of itself as reborn, and that gives us a mythos, and therefore the tools, to eternally rebuild. Fortuna may trump Man, but in the end, Mythos trumps Fortuna. The only way we die is if we forget who we are, thus the centrality of the struggle to preserve our identity, rather than to preserve the current manifestation of the Ecumenic Empire. If NRx is to avoid the errors of modern political ideology, however, it must avoid the short-sighted view of history and look at events on a civilizational-scale.

  2. The end of the West’s particular brand of ‘parasite-on-Christianity’ Humanism is not the end of the world. Its the beginning of a new age of Christendom.

  3. I happen to believe we’re 50-100 years into collapse (no doubting that WW1 was a major death spasm, where the soul of the West died). To all the collapse enthusiasts: How’re y’all liking it so far?

    1. The Anti-Gnostic January 28, 2015 at 12:24 pm

      It depends on the metric. 1918 was Stage 10 (“It’s Over”) for European classical liberal society. After a brief interregnum, the Pax Americana was born on VJ-Day, 1945. The Pax Americana is at its zenith. I’m 51, and I expect to die before the Pax does, so by one metric, we’re at Stage 1. By way of example, post-WW2 Syria is at Stage 10. Syria no longer exists beyond the extent of Russian and Iranian infusions of cash to the Assad government.

      But the decline and fall of the Pax Americana is already baked into the cake, as my cohort moves to net tax consumption and r-selected immigrants replace us and the children we didn’t have. They will not pay as many taxes, and they will not be nearly so loyal to the American proposition. So by another metric, you might say we’re at Stage 7.

  4. Have faith.

    Look, Reaction is not going to come to power while the current states are still functional, operating, with cohesive governments, etc. It’s just not going to happen. One the key principles in walking away from Modern Conservatism is that it does not change anything. It’s part of the system.

    Many have observed and predicted, entropy is accelerating in the world, on the verge of spiraling out of control. Economics, geopolitics, social breakdowns. When Evola wrote about the Kali Yuga, this was key. It will end. It is unsustainable, and is the quickest to die of all ages.

    No, the end of Modernity will not save us, but being ready to seize power in targeted areas when SHTF will lay the foundations for the new states of the Golden Age. Life will not be easy, it never has been prior to the advent of this age, nor has it ever been good for us for it to be. This is different from the fall of Rome and other civilizations. This is not just the end of a civilization, this is the end of an entire corrupt ideology that has ruled with an iron fist for over 300 years. Its the end of the worst age predicted in the Vedic tradition and in our own. There will be winners and losers, and many dead I have no doubt from famine and disease and warfare among the nations.
    The World of Tradition, over 2000 years of it, has allowed this ‘revolution’ to live out its fantasy. Soon comes the hour where it must be put down, the aristocracy restored, and society rebuilt.

    The question is when does the dam break? When does the tiger bite the dust? Nobody can say for sure, but I am sure I speak for many when I say there is a smell in the world right now, the smell of societal death. I do not fear the Moderns. There is not a real man among them.

    “Do not fear them, for I have given them into your hands; not one of them shall stand before you.”

    Joshua 10:8

  5. “…r-selected immigrants…”

    r/K selection theory is essentially meaningless since there is a wide chasm between those adherents in how and why the three primary mechanism by which the ratio of r/K expression operates. It is an exercise in scientistry, not scientody.

    “Soon comes the hour where it must be put down, the aristocracy restored, and society rebuilt.”



    What makes you so sure that an “aristocracy” will be restored should the world collapse? Praytell, what are its components? Who will lay claim to these “titles”? Why would people, in particular Americans, embrace this notion given the fact that representative democracy and all of its trimmings is firmly ensconced in the human consciousness, compliments of the philosophers from the age of Enlightenment?

    “The question is when does the dam break?”

    The more relevant question is what you YOU doing about it to prevent it?

    “There is not a real man among them.”



    Please define “real man”. What are your characteristics?

  6. “What makes you so sure that an “aristocracy” will be restored should the world collapse?”

    According to the Vedic tradition, the death of the Dark Age (Kali Yuga) is followed by a renewal of the Golden Age of civilization, what Evola called the World of Tradition. This prophesy has been very accurate in terms of the predicted facets of Modernity, right down to something as specific as widespread abortion.

    “Praytell, what are its components?”

    Hard to say at this point, although we have a general idea. I would recommend the various scholars who study old civilizations through this lens for an overview of what we might expect. We know more about some than others, and it is almost certain what is to come will be unique due to various factors, but will bear the mark of the World of Tradition regardless due to similar underlying themes, values, and structures. What kind of specific components would be preferable is exactly the debate going on inside the Reactosphere right now, or at least is one of the big subjects discussed.

    “Who will lay claim to these “titles”?”

    This is contingent upon a lot of factors. We cannot say for certain how the Kali Yuga ends. Pandemics, famine, war, etc. There are infinite possibilities in terms of how many people will be left on earth by 2100, where will they be geographically, what will be their demographic makeup? These factors will influence who become the elite in any given area. Many Neoreactionaries of course would like to rule themselves, but others of us are more humble and are devoted only to fashioning the sword wielded by future kings, not to be kings ourselves. Again, another factor to consider, what will the growth rate of Reactionary thought be over the near term future?

    “Why would people, in particular Americans, embrace this notion given the fact that representative democracy and all of its trimmings is firmly ensconced in the human consciousness, compliments of the philosophers from the age of Enlightenment?”

    Why indeed! Well, I believe that Reactionary philosophy as argued by those who contribute to Social Matter as well as the spider’s web of blogs in the steadily growing Reactosphere make the case compellingly to anyone with a mind open to anti-democratic ideas. However, I think your question is more of a query on ‘popular support’. How in God’s name does Reaction plan to bring the dunces around to our way of thinking, or at least make them sympathetic enough to be ruled by Reactionary principles?

    1) With the end of this age, we will most certainly be dealing with fewer people. Smaller populations are more easy to take control of with insurgencies.

    2) Liberal democracy is already losing credibility to mass apathy. Look at how many people not only refuse to vote in elections, but do not even follow politics at all. The average person’s opinion of politicians is lower than pond scum. America’s institutions have very little trust, a large contingent of the population does not like the direction of their country, and election after election fails to change anything meaningful.

    When you have a political order that will not respond to problems, that in fact exacerbates those problems, and cannot be changed through its own supposed ‘mechanism’, then the mind becomes open to the idea that that political order is not worth supporting.

    3) Yes, America is hard to change in many respects. It is a country, not a nation. However, look what is happening to occidental Americans. They will be a minority in the country they founded in the very near future. White men are losing the political power that was once gifted to them as their vote is diluted more and more by both women and ethnic minorities that the government refuses to seal the border to. We have seen from South Africa what happens when white men lose their grip on political power. Their standard of life drops dramatically, they become aliens in a country they once felt was theirs. The legitimate resentment that this will generate, especially in a time of abject economic hardship, is precisely what Reaction needs to begin leeching its political ideas in the general psyche. See the Human Biodiversity section of the Reactosphere for more info here.

    4) Charismatic leaders will be necessary, a weakening state will be necessary, religious and ethno-realist revival will be necessary, and a climate of disenfranchisement and fear will be necessary. Was it not Benjamin Franklin himself who said the Constitution would fail? It has. The experiment is over. The scathing attacks on Modernity itself being spearheaded by Reactionary writers only further discredit the elite.

    Remember that before the ‘Enlightenment’ man had many other ideas quite contrary to Modernity in his head. Are Modern ideas somehow immune from being swept away just as those before them? I think not. Especially since Modernity is built on lies.

    “Please define “real man”. What are your characteristics?”

    I define the essence of manhood here…

    http://citadelfoundations.blogspot.com/2014/12/the-two-manifestations-of-true-manhood.html

    This is going off of the Evolian view of man. You can also read the works of Dalrock and others like him who focus entirely on the subject of what real manhood is.

    Out of interest, are you a Reactionary, or perhaps just Reaction-curious?

  7. Vedic tradition being the operative word here. It is observably true that western governments in the past 150 years have yet to entertain the notion of a return to the aristocracy. While it is a possible option should the end of the world materialize, given the history of representative government, citizens of the new age are likely to maintain the traditions set forth by Locke, Rousseau.

    “Hard to say at this point, although we have a general idea.”
    
Your vagueness if Bill Belichek-esque. Put it this way, would YOU consider a member of the aristocracy?

    “These factors will influence who become the elite in any given area.”
    
In other words, you do not exactly know. It could be those “elites” are the same ones who today hold power and will turn to a revised version of representative democracy. OR, the elites could be those who traditionally have not been in positions of authority and will create an egalitarian society in which wealth is redistributed and power truly shared by all members of a society.

    “are devoted only to fashioning the sword wielded by future kings.”

    Who are these future kings? What is their background? How are they deemed worthy of this status? Please be specific.

    “How in God’s name does Reaction plan to bring the dunces around to our way of thinking, or at least make them sympathetic enough to be ruled by Reactionary principles?”

    By assuming that the masses are “dunces”, or MPAI, how do you indeed propose to convince them that YOUR version of elitism is better than other forms of elitism?

    “Smaller populations are more easy to take control of with insurgencies.”

    Not if these smaller populations have the financial means and the backing of a military or paramilitary presence.

    “we will most certainly be dealing with fewer people.”

    So, what about those people who do not conform? What do you propose you do with these “malcontents”?

    “Look at how many people not only refuse to vote in elections, but do not even follow politics at all.”

This trend does not necessarily mean they desire a change to an entirely new system of government, chiefly an aristocracy.

    “The average person’s opinion of politicians is lower than pond scum.”

    Which, historically in representative democracy, is quite common.

    “then the mind becomes open to the idea that that political order is not worth supporting.”

I concur. But a new form of government that in essence widens the gap between “noble” and “commoner” is decidedly undesirable given how people were able to exercise their freedoms in a representative democracy.

    “religious and ethno-realist revival will be necessary…”

    What religion will be deemed “proper” to practice?

    “and a climate of disenfranchisement and fear will be necessary”

    How Robespierrian of you. The common “rabble” will not stand for it. They never do. All you are offering is an elitist form of government controlled by a yet undecided group of powerful people who run roughshod over citizens inherent right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

    “The first is heroism, characterized by a courageous spirit, a readiness and willingness to face evil, and the pinnacle of which is self-sacrifice, to give up one’s earthly life for a true purpose.”

    And the men of today and tomorrow will strike down any and all efforts to subjugate them via a government predicated on the notions you offered.

    “The second is asceticism, characterized by a disciplined spirit not given to lust and greed, a path of self-denial for the cause of higher understanding and knowledge through contemplation.”

    YOUR definition of a man that can never be modern is mere fantasy, I am afraid.

  8. If you are so confident in ‘future man’ to fight off Reactionaries and defend this moronic, imploding order, please by all means do so.

    “To defeat your enemy
    You must pretend inferiority
    And encourage your enemy’s arrogance.”

    It’s hard to respond to requests for clairvoyant levels of detailed information apparently down to names of aristocrats and kings. I also try not to engage people who believe man has these made up ‘rights’ to all things liberal. Such a concept appears nowhere prior to the wretched ‘Enlightenment’. When you’ve taken the red pill, please return. Until then, pop the champagne cork, put on some pajamas, and enjoy Modernity! You are indeed a true man! Feminists everywhere applaud.

  9. “If you are so confident in ‘future man’ to fight off Reactionaries and defend this moronic, imploding order, please by all means do so.”

    You are merely attempting to replace one ruling class with another ruling class.

    “I also try not to engage people who believe man has these made up ‘rights’ to all things liberal. Such a concept appears nowhere prior to the wretched ‘Enlightenment’.”

    Humans progress. It is our very essence. We create new technology. We challenge ourselves intellectually. The Age of Enlightenment is the cornerstone of that human progress.

    “When you’ve taken the red pill, please return.”

    No thanks to what amounts to be an opiate to delude the masses into thinking that paradise can be achieved simply by forgoing their liberties and handing over authority and power to the aristocracy, which historically jackbooted any and all dissenters into submission.

    “It’s hard to respond to requests for clairvoyant levels of detailed information apparently down to names of aristocrats and kings.”

    Direct questions –>
    Would YOU consider YOURSELF a member of the aristocracy? Why?

    Who today would YOU consider to be the ideal aristocrat or king? A particular name would suffice. Their
    characteristics would be a bonus.

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