Black Lives Matter is opening a portal

I believe that Black Lives Matter is opening a portal, one many people would rather not face.

It is boldly making public the oppression faced by black communities, led and directed by black communities.

I believe it is saying: ‘Look, there is external oppression. The problem does not begin in individuals.’

This movement will open the way to liberate all minorities, the disabled, the poor, the gender dysphoric, the forgotten working class, all oppressed persons.

It has been both cathartic and painful. It makes me realize the following maxim: No internal development without external development. No real bettering yourself when you are being oppressed on a daily basis.

The only way to truly better ourselves as individuals is to bring down the oppressive forces which truncate us and make us live in a compromised state. When minorities are no longer forcefully classified with a negative tribal identity then we can fully begin the task of individuation.

I have had a lot of well-to-do white friends tell me it is all in me, or that it starts in me. It isn’t all in me and it doesn’t start with me.

There is no ‘me’, as there is no ‘you’. There is a simultaneous relation – it starts in me when it starts outside of me. People might think they are empowering others by placing the emphasis on the individual. In reality it is frustrating and false; a rosey platitude that leaves us in an oppressed state, wondering why we can never get anywhere. We can only bring about social change together, by being a node of consciousness in a great sea, until critical mass is reached and the evils of old are washed away by our collective tide.

Black Lives Matter is a mirror held up to society. It is a reminder that these dark and sad feelings, these inferiorities and self-hatreds come from without. Not just for my black brothers and sisters but by extension to all oppressed minorities of all creeds. Systematic oppression can feel like a personal problem when it isn’t addressed on such a mass scale.

And why would power want it addressed? And why would those more free from systematic oppression be willing to face up to the dark truth of the freedoms they take for granted? We cannot always rely on allies and less the system which creates such problems in the first place.

Black Lives Matter.

Apps of the Abyss

In the loneliness of lockdown, a distant light beckoned. Numerous sources spoke of an elysium which was slight enough to be carried in a pocket; a portal of promise and excitement.

Millions of lonely women were flocking to dating apps. This was an unprecedented opportunity to find true love and break the boredom of isolation.

I previously had some experience with dating sites and apps – all of them were like calling into an abyss. But this would be different! Because this time there was the precedent of lockdown. This time I would venture into Dante’s Inferno and make it out with Beatrice in my arms…

Individualism divides us, then releases the for-profit app to unite us.

Once upon a time, there was a post-modern nightmare where no one really had a clue what the hell was going on or who they were.  We lived in an extremely fast, atomized, consumerist society. We were always busy, always supposed to be somewhere else, always trying to get somewhere else, and always worried about how we would get to that somewhere else we were meant to already be at. The system was not something you could participate in and remain a fulfilled, healthy human being. Doing the ‘right’ thing – running on the treadmills of capitalism – was very much the ‘wrong’ thing.

The system was unsustainable; a mental health time-bomb, an unfolding climate catastrophe, a trampling down of those worse effected by its breakneck pace. The mental state it created was one of constant void, not only unfulfilling to the ‘losers’ but also to the ‘winners’. The more winners won, the worse losers lost. The pool of intelligent, capable, fulfilled people diminished with widening inequality and the divided society became a riot waiting to happen. The system maintained itself with a cocktail of caffeine, anti-depressants, chemical anxiolytics and perhaps the worst drug of them all – an ideological addiction to endless activity.

Amidst all of this busy-ness and dissatisfaction, was the very human need for connection. Something which not even centuries of capitalist exploitation could destroy. Nor could it completely ignore the primal needs of the spiritual-complexes which make up human beings. Especially not when there was a whole new market to be ventured into and an entire domain of human interaction to commodify. A little l-word which some exalt, some decry and those like me shrug when confronted with.

Love.

Then a microscopic terror spawned from the cavern-dwelling bats of the east and it all came to a grinding halt.

Here in the present our atomized, individualistic society still has us hungry for real connection, whilst also separating us from that connection. We want to spend more time with others but have the precedent of survival to attend to, shunted around from rented-room to rented-room, uprooted from communities, always demanded upon to be productive.

People who are satisfied, creative and connected do not make good consumer-drones, nor do they let authoritarian institutions make all of the decisions. The system needs us divided and dissatisfied to maintain itself, whilst also needing to keep us just functional enough to carry it upon our backs.

The lack of true society creates an opening for exploitation. Social media begins to fill in a gap which is created by all this money-making, consuming and faffing around. But it cannot truly satisfy even those who fully embrace it, let alone those who know what it means to belong to genuine, organic, human community. It is a watered-down broth and the human soul fundamentally rejects it. There is no fooling the deepest soul of natural creatures; we are not evolved for atomized individualism.

The logical consequence of such digital non-connection is the Dating App – the portal into the abyss. People do not have time to explore real social circles, to meet potential partners through the more ‘organic’ channels. Meeting a partner is already a difficult endeavour, let alone when juggled against capitalist ego survival. So a market is created to fulfill our ‘connection’ needs. Also, fundamentally, our ‘fornication’ needs.

These abyssal apps are full of promise, accessible and in the palm of your hand. But they are more like a pact with Mephistopheles than a free path to fulfillment. Powerful companies hold information on thousands of people; their names, faces and even locations. This data can and often will be sold; the app is never free; Hell always demands its toll. Nor does it pretend to be fully free – those who pay monthly subscriptions get more chances to be seen and to be ‘successful’. Dating apps are for-profit, they are not for-love. Who would have thought that companies operating in a capitalist society would try to profit from something as ‘pure’ as love!

The longer you spend swiping left or right, the more time and hope you invest, the more of yourself you digitalize and commodify, the better for the owners and shareholders. The apps do not need to work for people to use them – they only need people to think they will. Just as we are fed a message of ‘work hard and you will prosper’ with the next million a mere business idea away, so we are always one swipe away from ‘The One’ who comes into our lives and fulfills us.

Shallowness is not a side-effect of these dating apps. Shallowness is the core value without which they could not exist. The apps depend upon the snap judgements of the human ‘want-love’ impulse and the sadness of the ‘am-lonely’ feeling. As they expand in scope to encompass more and more people, the effect grows worse and worse.

The images of people perceived in the digital realm are unlike the physical realm. They are a contrivance designed to signal perfections which cannot achieved in a spontaneous meeting. You only get to see what the other person desires you to see. In real life you might hear someone’s voice, see their artistry, catch their scent, before you get to see them. They could be confident, charismatic and vivacious. They could compliment you and show you interest, making them appear much more attractive. The spontaneity of the situation could excite and get the heart pumping. But the profile photograph is a lie designed to tell a truth. The ability to swipe through the wall of faces, the endless torrent of images, is unlike anything we have evolved for. From a sedentary position, you can dive into the infinite realm of ‘potential’. It is a massive amount of promised choice, when in reality it is the cheapening of choice until it is all but worthless, but for a privileged or lucky few.

As a man using these apps over the last few days, I delved into a near-infinite digital abyss. Competition is absolutely rampant and imbalance is manifold. Men tend to outnumber women on these apps and also tend to spread themselves more thinly. Women who are considered attractive have hundreds of ‘suitors’ liking them and no small number of barely-articulate opening lines to ‘admin’ through. Men who are considered unattractive or average are invisible. The app determines the chain of potential mates you are exposed to.

The algorithm determines who you see, which can massively determine your perceptions. In my last usage of a dating app I was initially getting a broad spectrum of women appear. Some had filled-in profiles, some did not, some had good pictures, some did not. But it was at least a varied affair of shallowness. Suddenly the ‘learning’ algorithm had a eureka moment, switched and consigned me to the lowest levels of its Stygian abyss. I was only being shown women considered ‘undesirable’ by the millionfold travellers who came before me. Almost all were older than forty, had badly taken pictures, put no effort in their profiles, and who would be deemed by social norms as extremely overweight. The app decided that I was a total loser, so going on its value-system, it tried to put me together with other people who were considered to be on my Stygian gutter-level – a back-handed compliment if ever there was one!

Of course, finding someone unattractive is as natural as desiring someone. It is perfectly within our right to not-like someone in a romantic aspect. But the systematic, algorithmic lumping of people into the lowest levels of abyss is the real injustice. It is a symbol of inequality, for on the opposite pole is the top tier of elysium where only those deemed beautiful may tread. On the other side of the spectrum were gods who were algorithmically exalted, those who would see only a procession of nymphs considered most appealing by the flailing, swiping masses of sweaty-fingered men. It was a deeply pathetic experience, if not a side-splittingly tragic one. It blasted me off the last app with such force that I now enjoy the spontaneous sight of varied, real-human beings outside in a way that I never quite did before. At least out here, in the real-world, I can be a fully three dimensional person.

A great deal of the abyssal feeling came from not knowing if the other person acknowledged my existence. In the real world, you could meet and talk to a woman and know that she has at least received the aural signals composed by your speech organs. Your witty message on a dating app could be lost in a sea of desperate voices, or consigned to the lowest tier of existence because of your refusal to pay for ‘premium’ services. It is an ugly game and a numbers game. Putting trust in strangers on the other side of the a mobile phone; training your own heart to beat faster when you receive a match or a like.

On a simple cost-benefit analysis, even for someone who succeeds with these kinds of apps (which seems a minority), they must think about how much they invested into it; whether that time was better spent actually going outside of the house as they used to do in the Dark Ages. I earnestly believe that it is an utter waste of time for the vast majority, particularly the invisible men and women deemed unattractive by the swiping masses. To those who attach their self-esteem to this digital image, all the worse. Its not necessarily you being ‘rejected’. This game is played with loaded dice.

The greater our means to communicate, the further we separate

I do not truly believe that all digital connection is futile and watered down. Even when I was living in a community, I still had occasion to go onto the shallow realms of social media. Online social spaces can be used for good purposes, if one has the energy to push against their algorithms of distraction and disatisfaction. They can be seem like a decent use of time when confronted with boredom and faced with a hyper-charged digitally-shaped brain.

Likewise with the dating apps – there is a perverse pleasure in the convenience of being able to log in with a tap and be whisked into a realm where you can find your knightess in shining armour. When things did not go to plan initially, I changed my profile, researched opening lines, took better pictures. All phantasmic gestures of control to keep the illusion going. It did feel nice for a few days to be lied to and it did feel exciting to have that sense of power and choice.

But as you can probably guess from the tone of this article, it was all a load of shite.

 

 

If you can love another, you can love yourself

If you can love another, you can love yourself.

In fact I could take it one step further – the only one you can truly guarantee loves you is yourself!

But how many who seek love from another do not know how to show it to themselves?

What does self-love look like?

– Accepting your own vulnerabilities and flaws: Two very difficult things. To be vulnerable in a society that can be predatory, to be still in a sea of moving people who demonize ‘idleness’, to dare to look within and risk being called ‘childish’, these are not easy pressures to deal with. We are expected to be superhuman by others and by trying to live up to this, we fail to acknowledge our limited capacities. The unhealthy customs of an unhealthy society should not be the benchmark of sanity. Whatever the self-destructive masses say, however perfect their Instagram and Facebook selves appear, deep down we are all harbouring a vulnerable self and we are all flawed and imperfect.

– Treating yourself and acknowledging yourself: Enjoying life without guilt is key to self-love. You deserve the finer things in life – sometimes! Even with moral considerations, such as an imperative to be vegan, you can forgive yourself for not being 100% perfect. We do not live in the conditions where we can flower into fully compassionate, healthy, ethically perfect eco-friendly vegans – so why strive for the impossible? Why take all the problems of a society onto your two shoulders? Acknowledging that you deserve good things is a wholesome self love. Sometimes you can be a bit greedy, eat a whole packet of biscuits to yourself, have a lazy and listless day. This is your birthright as an imperfect, sentient being.

– Listening to your deepest wounds and allowing healing: There is a wounded part in all of us. I do not know at this stage in my life if these wounds ever heal. I can say with certainty that it is possible to get better at managing and understanding those wounds. There are better and worse responses to a flaring up of inner wounds. Being frustrated at the wounded inner-child for keeping you up all night when you have an important meeting tomorrow may seem a rational response. But in the long-term that wounded self is going to need love or it will damage your psyche, self-neglect does not produce healthy people. I have put myself to sleep with a self-directed ‘I love you, unconditionally’ after a full night of insomnia. Unconditional love is not a good thing for adults in my view, but for children it is quite essential. If you cannot love your own vulnerable inner-child, who can you love? That is where love is needed the most and you are in the ideal position to give it. Unconditionally.

– Non-comparison with imagined selves: A good friend of mine often talks about falling short of his ‘best self’. I don’t know what he is talking about, he already is his best possible self! Sometimes he stands, sometimes he falls. It is as good as we can get. I have always compared myself to ‘famous me’. Whilst this desire for recognition has some basis in reality and possibility, the idea that there will be a point where one breaks through into the world of fame and celebrity, a lofty vantage for philanthropy and fighting the system, is an imagined self of absurd proportions. If you are brave enough to be flawed yourself, that is a damn good effort.

– The nature of beings: The nature of your being is to continue existing. The will to live is something as natural as a plant reaching up to the sun. Ideas of a self-destructive nature are imposed from without, by forces which are interested in using you, exploiting you, or harming you. The very nature of yourself, what philosophers have called the ‘conatus’, is a stronger ‘idea’ than anything from without. Within that will to live is a will to love and that must necessarily be directed ‘inwards’.

And finally, very importantly, don’t worry if you can’t self-love at any given time. The world is too big for your shoulders and there are a lot of bad influences in town. Spending a night binging on Netflix or Rome: Total War is the birthright of those of us born in this era. Distraction, hobbies, being a bit too self-critical sometimes. This is all part of the sentient-human package.

If we idolize and essentialize self-love and make it something to aspire to, then paradoxically we destroy it, for we trample over the part of us that is imperfect.

Remember always to leave room enough for the fucked-up you.

 

All I have

All I have are faded memories

Of the songs, learned on the way

Raise your heads, face the coming night

For we all, must die some day

 

Know you not, of our destiny?

Brother dear, oh sister mine

For the fate of our trouble race

Is to strife, for all of time

 

Gaia screams, but we hear her not

For the warring of machines

Cut my hair, take my friends away

Kill my soul, for your dreams

 

Of a world bathed in concrete

A toxic sky, an acid sea

The cost of greed is humanity

And you still, want more from me

 

So I draw, this black shattered sword

And sing one, final song

I wish that I need not destroy you

But it would, right a wrong

 

All I have are faded memories

Of comrades, lost on the way

Raise your heads, face the coming light

The dawn is here, this is your day!

 

For Mitch

The man under the railway bridge

There is a man who lives under the railway bridge leading to the busy high street.

All of his possessions are pushed against a wall and his mattress takes up about a third of the walkway. Curiously I was thinking yesterday that if it were me, I would put the mattress against the wall and my things as a kind of barrier. But maybe they would blow away or be kicked by passers by.

The man under the railway bridge has no safety barrier around him when he sleeps. You can look in on him, down from a bus window or directly there. He has no defences against other people’s eyes, no separation or privacy from the outside world.

The fumes from the buses must be poisoning him and the harsh outdoor weather slowing draining him and the light pollution denying him true rest and recovery.

What must have befallen such a person to lead them to this situation? I cannot know what he thinks or feels, whether he is fleeing something, whether he would rather be out there than in some place worse. But I cannot imagine it being a good situation.

If he is a musician he cannot keep his guitar in good order, if he is a baker he cannot work his hands on the dough, if he is a athlete he can’t keep his fitness high, if he is a teacher he cannot order his mind or keep to a schedule.

Whatever this man may have been, he is in a place where that potential is not realized. Somewhere along the way, enough people have failed him and the system has failed to catch him – or deliberately let him fall.

I hope the man who lives under the railway bridge is picked up by the two great, warm hands of society and given walls to protect himself, refind himself, counsellors to talk him through whatever needs to be spoken or just to be there in moments of desperation and friends enough to give him something to live for.

I hate this callous system, its economics and its deranged values. Those at the very ‘top’ must have gouged-out hearts and atrophied souls to allow for, or even cause, so much suffering both to their fellow man and to nature itself.  It must be a heavy burden on them, all that power, all that real suffering they cause.

That is the real tragedy here – all that suffering is for nothing. It does not teach our souls or take us on some spiritual journey. There are people who are forced to suffer, it is immoral and it needs to stop.

Listen to that deepest impulse

I don’t know how long this will go on for. I don’t know if it will ever be healed or go away, if it will let me live as other people do. I cannot give any guarantees to myself, or to anyone.

No amount of ‘sleep hygiene’ can guarantee a dreamful night. Positive thinking and mindfulness is not going to achieve much more than temporarily helping to cope – at worst it divorces you from your own being. All the new found things, breakthroughs in ‘gut health’, yoga and all that, is not the ticket.

All you can do for sure is listen to that deep impulse, let it manifest in you. It is you, you are not separate from it. Being aware of it will not fulfil it, there is no ‘pure consciousness’ which can perceive back upon itself. When a child cries do you tell them to be ‘aware’ of the reason why they are crying and expect them to be ok with that? I should hope not! You would listen to why they are crying and try to deal with the cause, to soothe their fears if they are unfounded and provide their needs if they are unfulfilled.

Likewise we cannot turn off or turn away from the manifestation of our deep impulses, our deepest pain. For me it manifests as insomnia and discomforting states. They can wipe me out, destroying a routine, disabling me.

But I have stopped using Valium to guarantee me a dreamless night’s rest. If I cannot make it to something the next day, unless it is extremely important, I have to accept I cannot make it. I will listen to the body-wisdom, even in its most debilitating states. This is the only long-term way to move forward.

Actually listening, playing out subconscious movements in the dark, holding the deep wounds and acknowledging them tends to work for me. It lets me rest, it fades into the background. It might never go away, but the more I can deal with it and accept it, the more confident I become that I will never again fall into a total abyss.

Adapting to cope or thrive in this society is not a way to be healthy and true – I have seen how brutalizing it is to those around me. It is an illusion and a sad one. We must fight to transform the world we live in, allow people to live out their pain and be dormant whenever they need to be. Wounded adults will never bring about a peaceful, enlightened society. Ignorant, power-hungry fools know not even themselves – how can they know anything of the world around them.

What would it mean to transcend your own self and be able to function despite the screams of your soul? It would be to live inauthentically, something capitalism demands of us. The destructiveness of our society results from such detachment. It is all around us, and it is all because we are afraid of nature in its truest and nearest manifestation: in ourselves.

When you next lay awake at 3am, unable to sleep, tossing and turning, rather than try to wipe yourself out with pills ask: what is this deepest impulse trying to tell me? Why is my body on strike, what is trying to come to the surface…

 

Depression – breaking it all down (Part I)

I am not one of those people who believes that depression is all about thought processes, behaviour and ‘life style’. It is something far more deep reaching and fundamental than that. You cannot think your way out of depression, just as you cannot think your way into it.

However, I still see the important role of thinking in keeping you there once you are there and the dreaded making a bad situation seem worse!

Depression for me makes all the bad things seem inevitable and the source of the bad things far more powerful than it truly is. It is like a wall of despair, a vast amorphous barrier, so tall you cannot possibly see over, or around it. But when we focus in on this behemoth, we see that it is made up of individual components, and our perspective is that of someone hunched, low and defeated.

Stand up to your full height and the wall, whilst still imposing, is not so large. Focus in, and though you will see the strength of your enemy, the weak points also reveal themselves.

Breaking it all down –

My new direction is to break it all down in my mind; to dispel this mythic image of an undefeatable, invincible, inevitable foe. I know that the hostility of capitalist society is a very real thing, not just an imagined enemy. But lets use our imagination too break it down into realistic components.

Nature is being destroyed by the machine, but cracks in the pavement are full of life, chopped down trees unexpectedly sprout a thousand branches, certain species thrive even in this era of mass extinction. In ten years time an abandoned neighbourhood will become a wild garden, in a hundred it will become a grove, in a thousand there will be nothing left of it, strangled and hidden by thriving life. Nature is going no-where, and it is never far from regeneration. This ancient thing is more resilient than us, and we will always live in its beautiful shadow.

The officials who keep the machine running, do they truly believe in what they are doing? Would they not rather be pursuing some goal more true to themselves, spending time with their children, resolving emotions they have repressed, exploring and finding themselves? The amount of coercion and brainwashing needed to keep people in their place to blunt their true dreams and ambitions is proof positive that most people, even those in positions of power, are themselves led along and trapped by the madness of civilization. The lack of self-knowledge and true ambition, this is a reason to pity the machine-servants, hypnotized by digital screens, life void of meaning but for the targets from above and the will of invisible figures more powerful than themselves.

Advertising is everywhere, shallow, crass, idiotic pleas for conformity. But there is nothing democratic about advertising; it is there, but who wants it there but the sad corporations trying to control our choices? No one is really taken in on a conscious-level; eyes are rolled on the tube, people take the piss out of the sell-out celebrities, a bad pun elicits a long groan. Deep down, a subconscious lever may have been triggered, a greater sense of dissatisfaction and desire to go on holiday to ‘discover life in Greece’ (or whatever). But this is again an affliction – how many of us would vote to give powerful corporations thousands upon thousands of square metres of space to try and influence our decisions? The ubiquity of advertising only demonstrates how fucked up property and power is in our society, not the democratic will of the people. Some of the more idiotic populace might find advertising interesting or be consciously duped by its bullshittery, what can be done for such a hopeless minority?

It can be a loveless existence suffering from mental illness. You are vulnerable and need to be loved more than most people, but that same vulnerability makes trusting others difficult, and that same hurt makes you less desirable. The lack of strength and stability is a massive turn off. Month after month of failure and rejection makes the chances of finding a woman who is interested seem less and less likely, a feedback loop of frustration and disappointment. But all this doesn’t make things impossible, only more difficult. The spiral down into despair is one that is hard to avoid here; it is informed by the deep subconscious wounds and triggers of childhood, but it is not inevitable. Am I totally helpless and disadvantaged by this depression and anxiety? Everything to do with this mental illness and the abuse of the past makes the whole sphere of love much harder for me. Still, the act of breaking down how mental illness is contributing to isolation and lack of love dispels the mist, promotes understanding. It is the gargantuan wall which leads to despair, not the individual bricks. Maybe through understanding things will change and improve, though I cannot promise this to myself or anyone else. At least they cannot get any worse. Going from things are hopeless to who knows what can happen, I will have no judgements is a massive luxury for me at the moment. Neutrality – feeling neither loved or unloved, does not feel so bad.

End of Part I

The Alienated Man (finds his home)

I am not alone.

Naturally alienation goes hand to hand with isolation, but it is not true.

I am feeling the extent of my socialization, how far I have fallen into the pit.

The malaise inside me, the toxic poison, is spread far and wide.

It is one thing to know it intellectually, but this is still an isolating experience. The intellect is in me, I go round and round in it.

But after reading the ‘manifesto’ of another alienated young man, I really started to feel that is was not just about me.

Low self-esteem, sexual frustration, humiliation, abuse, neglect, isolation, no belonging, no tribe, no purpose… this is the life of a lone outcast. It is the promise of a painful, lonely, unfortunate life.

Attraction to someone, romantic or otherwise, is not purely an individual matter. It depends on being identified with a tribe or community. The alienated male is the ultimate outsider, he doesn’t belong to anything. This is what repulses people from him, not necessarily his own character. But alienation is all he knows, the sweet sense of belonging given or earned by others not yet his, or not enough to nullify the dangerous darkness and resentment bred by wasted, lonely years.

Not all alienations are the same. I feel much distance from other alienated males, who often see no further than their own shadow. My alienation is partly productive – a distancing from a sick and destructive society, and the evils of patriarchy. I am glad I do not fit in, to a degree. This does not make my alienation healthy or righteous – I am yet to find my tribe, the collective that will enable real change and real struggle to happen.

But perhaps I, as a total ‘loser’ in the eyes of society, am perfectly equipped to engage with questions of alienation, drag myself out of this dark pit and maybe encourage others to do so also.

It really feels like I am finally going somewhere, coming to realize the patterns which have caged me. I want to scream and lash out – not to hurt people, but certainly to express the power of my feeling to those who are doing the hurting!

If only men could express themselves more freely and without guilt, how much less suicide and murder there would be. If only we put the blame where it truly lay, upon the shoulders of patriarchal giants who watch us ‘lesser’ beings be destroyed at their feet, who laugh and humiliate down at us. If only we dared challenge the polite society which allows people to fall through the net, distributes wealth and opportunity unequally, disconnects us from the world, ruled by insanely short-termist, stupid bickering politicians and nihilistic businessmen. When there is an explosion of violence or a suicide, these motherfuckers have blood on their hands.

It is no law of the universe that a percentile of men will be fucked up, alienated and vulnerable. We can have a society far less violent and far less deranged if we wanted it. Perhaps people are afraid of the void, of realizing how pointless their labours are, afraid to aspire to anything better than the nihilism of spiritually dead capitalism.  But by daring the dark tunnel of truth we can come out into a world better than this one.

That is to all the people who said I was a cynic all these years! The ‘cynicism’ was necessary to break chains, now I am free, terrifyingly free, to dive deep into myself and the cosmos and emerge, flawed and never-complete, but still empowered enough to howl in rage at the prison we have created for ourselves, and howl for freedom for all.

The unimaginative masses who couldn’t see beyond capitalism, the underachievers who conform to earthly power for fleeting pleasures, the unambitious workers who gave up their dreams to step onto the treadmill and escape themselves – the multiplication of all these short-fallings is the slow death of the world itself! Just ask the climate scientists, and just look at the dispossessed figures on every high street.

But I do not want to paint a dark picture of gloom, because I do not believe it! There are lots of good people out there, good people with good hearts striving for the right kind of change.  Connecting with them is the short-term solution to alienation, and together with them we can build the long-term solution of post-capitalist society.

The alienated, frustrated, lost and lonely male need not be so for long. He can mature, challenge the misogyny around him for something uplifting and magnanimous, he can find the love he seeks once he dares look deeply into himself, learns to laugh at his contradiction, sees women as human beings rather than ‘angels and whores’, realizes that sex and power is not an elixir of self-completion. He does not need to compare himself to ‘alpha’ males or entitled, enabled white middle-class this, that and the others. We can free ourselves from these ‘ideals’ whenever we want, for those ideals are based on an othering, and othering is always a violent affair. Only the most malicious of humanity who benefit from othering and trampling others might want such a system – fuck them!

Two fingers up at the patriarchy, and then a hammer for its heart!

Lets go back into our feminism and our socialism, but also remember that an advocacy for men is necessary and nothing to be guilty for, so long as it avoids the landmine strewn hells of misogyny which stain this movement for recognition. Men need advocacy and can learn much from (the saner-strains of) feminism!

We can rise again! Alienation is just a passing phase, belonging awaits all creatures of nature and spirit, which we inevitably are.

There might always be some void inside us, some capacity to feel alienation and distance from the world around us. I believe this to be a painfully necessary evolutionary adaptation, to prevent society from solidifying too much, or going fucking insane without anyone to say ‘hold on, this is fucked, lets change it’. And further, I believe that like all creatures of the cosmos we face a nature of beauty but also terror, and that all beings experience some degree of naturally occurring coldness and anxious void at our ambivalent situation.

But the great void cannot be endured forever, we need to get a hold on it and regulate it. Cynicism and distance are necessary but must be tempered with intimacy, the intimacy we all need as bio-spiritual creatures.

My own days of alienation must come to an end!

The inhospitable hell-heat

I thought I would write something for posterity, something to look back upon and think – yeah its a cold, dark and damp Winter, but at least that shitty summer is over!

This heat is hostile to life. Grass withered and died in London parks, starved of resurrecting rain. The earth cracked apart as if beneath the tread of scorching giants, broken and hurt by the merciless pounding rays of heat.

Its climate change, and its not so much on our doorstep as permeating through our houses and into our bodies.

Now look at all the people rushing around outside your window. Look at all the people driving to and from work, running on the capitalist treadmill.

Today I feel glad I did not work for this system, and vow that I never will. This is man-made climate change, this scorching hell is our own doing. It is not particularly the fault of those individuals running around; they are just doing something rather than nothing. The fault lies with the system of short-termism, wealth inequality, separation from nature, the war machine, and you know the rest. Driving us on and on to our collective demise as a civilization.

Lets look at it another way – we are not only heading for catastrophe, we are suffering now.

And this is a ‘first world’ country. This is the height of civilization. Jokes about Britons coping with the heat aside, this is a precursor of the ‘fuckedness’ we are approaching.

Even in the richest and most ‘advanced’ societies people are dying from the heat. Sweden is aflame with wild-fires! Our one and only world, made a tinder box.

Who could want this? Who could deny that this is a horrible thing to experience?

It is laid bare for us, as much as we are made bare for it.

Yesterday I was actually a bit proud that I spent much of my life doing fuck all for this system. It was destructive to do nothing, and I will not lionize doing fuck all with yourself; the resisters and dissidents and people actively searching for solutions deserve our pride.

But at least I am significantly less responsible for the climate catastrophe then others, despite all their insults and ‘encouragements’ all these years. They were wrong for being conform-a-trons, and their sizzling flesh and agonizing tube journey home from work is but truth of it! Hoorah for me – now we can all slowly die in this hell-heat!

I promise never to wish for sunlight again! Whatever is, I will try to cope with it. Balance is the ultimate good.

Now lets do what we can to turn down the heat on this world folks, before it is fucked beyond repair.

The consumerist spray of chemical roses

An entire sense is being denied. An entire sphere of experience, something so utterly primal and fundamental, is being drowned out. It is another thing being killed by consumer society. and this thing is scent.

Consumerism has reached into the lives and habits of the ordinary people, and sold to them ‘freshness’ in a pressurized spray can full of toxic chemicals, or a colourful bottle of fabric conditioner.

It has even colonized the shitter, because now you can buy a spray to protect that small lake of water from the occasion of human effluence.

I remember as far back as Secondary School people being publicly put on trial by inquisition and humiliated for not having a bath every single day. One of the worst insults going was that someone had the scent of a human being. It took till adulthood to realize how these conforming kids were being influenced by the sick, anxious society around them.

Consumerist hygiene is not about basic cleanliness – it is about feeding on anxiety and promoting what is artificial to people who are trained to be insecure and overly self-analytical. It is about the creation of artificial needs through its control of custom.

If you are trying to run away from the realities of your own body, you are not going to get very far.

It is not only a shame that something artificial is seen as good, but that what is truly good is seldom experienced. Scent is an entire language, one that is being denied and underdeveloped by homogeneity.

It is not a trivial matter, we are being made less sensate. People will never know what it means to have developed scent-senses. They will never know that even their own comfort is at stake, as they are constantly surrounded by artificial chemicals, rather than what is natural. Worse they will impose their anxieties on others by social law.

Chemical roses and chemical blooms, clothes covered in poisons to be washed into the seas, a planet poisoned for the vanities and stupidities of a species which seems to be doing all it can to promote misanthropy and self-destruction.

What could be more idiotic and futile than trying to mask what you truly are?