Living in such a state taTestaTesTaTe etats a hcus ni gniviL of mind in which time sTATEsTAtEsTaTeStA emit hcihw ni dnim of does not pass, space STateSTaTeSTaTeStAtE ecaps ,ssap ton seod does not exist, and sTATeSt oFOfOfo dna ,tsixe ton seod idea is not there. STatEst ofoFOFo .ereht ton si aedi Stuck in a place staTEsT OfOFofo ecalp a ni kcutS where movements TATeSTa foFofoF stnemevom erehw are impossible fOFoFOf elbissopmi era in all forms, UsOFofO ,smrof lla ni physical and nbEifof dna lacisyhp or mental - uNBeInO - latnem ro your mind is UNbeinG si dnim rouy focusing on a unBEING a no gnisucof lone thing, or NBeINgu ro ,gniht enol a lone nothing. bEinGUn .gnihton enol a You are numb and EiNguNB dna bmun era ouY unaware to events stneve ot erawanu taking place - not -iSSuE- ton - ecalp gnikat knowing how or what FORTY tahw ro woh gniwonk to think. You are in 10/15/97 ni era uoY .kniht ot a state of unbeing.... ....gniebnu fo etats a
First of all, boys and girls, it's October. Remember to be wearing black on the twenty-second for the National Day of Protest Against Police Brutality. Tell your friends.
There's been a bit of a shake-up here at State of unBeing offices. Or, rather, that isn't "here". The true successors to State of unBeing are working from an undisclosed location, at least until we manage to drive the usurpers from the complex.
In any case, here is the summary. After I Wish My Name Were Nathan had Kilgore Trout killed, and then tried to cover it up, we had to have a meeting of the Intertextual Workingman's Association. We would have been flexible, and even would have allowed the people to vote on the multimedia idea, so long as we could have been sure the people would have voted the right way. But it wasn't working out.
I'm kidding, of course. The people kicked IWMNWN out for killing Kilgore. Killing editors is wrong, even if he had it coming.
So, boys and girls, you know what State of unBeing looks like. If anything drops into your mailbox that doesn't look right, it isn't right. And see if I Wish My Name Were Nathan ever ends up on the contributors list now.
We have a pretty decent issue, anyway. Several articles, a couple of pretty bad poems -- but they're short, and several short stories. Not bad from working on a laptop plugged into the cigarette lighter of our old pick-up truck, don't you think?
Until later, It Is Right to Resist.
The Congress has on the fast track a lovely bill called the Freedom from Religious Persecution Act. This bill essentially sets up an organization answerable only to the U.S. President, with the power to enact sanctions, etc., against countries whose religious policies they don't approve of. It also calls for this office to monitor religious organizations around the world -- with no injunction against within our borders.
That means the U.S. government is going to be tracking and monitoring people's religious affiliations.
I don't know about you, but I find that ominous.
Here in Texas, we continue to have prisoners of war in relation to the Republic of Texas movement. Never thought I'd see it. The movement is struggling now under legal fees, and has little chance of surviving.
Meanwhile, Texas also leads the country in state executions.
Earlier this year, the Southern Poverty Law Center released a report on militia organizations two years after the Oklahoma City bombing. The SPLC is a familiar name to those following militia and similar organizations, or the Oklahoma City bombing, and is an organization dedicated to smearing organizations the One Worlders don't approve of. Because the average American -- newspaper employee or otherwise -- has the political consciousness of a carrot, if your organization has a sweet sounding name like "Southern Poverty Law Center", you get believed. Among their targets this year was the United States Taxpayer Party. Their crime? Openly opposing the New World Order. (Believe it or not, the SPLC report listed opposing the New World Order as a reason for being listed as an anti-government hate group.)
A member of the joint chiefs of staff recently told the Army Times Americans are soon going to have to choose between decreased civil liberties and decreased protection from domestic terrorist activity.
Across the country, large conglomerates are buying up radio stations and television stations and bringing them into ever smaller ownership groups. Particularly noticeable in this trend is that conservative talk radio is being bought up -- and shut down -- decreasing the variety of views available in the media. This has been made possible through the recent Telecommunications Act of 1996. If anyone speaks legalese and can explain how and why these changes were made, aside from economic censorship purposes, I'd appreciate hearing it.
A new study shows poverty among Texas children to be 24% -- 39% among African American children in Texas. I know of only two places with a rate higher than that latter. Poverty is 40% among some communities in New York City, and Guatemala.
Michael New has entered the appeals phase of his trial for refusing to wear the United Nations blue beret. (His struggle is far from over. There is no doubt whichever side loses this appeal will bring it to the Supreme Court.) In other news, the United Nations recently seized three Serbian radio stations due to disapproving of their news broadcasts, and reports of UN blue helmet atrocities from abuse of power to rape and child prostitution continue to stack up.
The price we pay for "world peace".
Dear Editor: I just thought I'd write in and voice my support for the one true State of unBeing. Not too long ago ansat pulled up to my office, bleeding from several wounds, in a gunshot-riddled beat up old pickup truck with the Apocalypse Culture Publications seal on the door. After letting him stand in the rain for a while and liberating him from society's demands that he stay dry, I let him into my office, at that time still located in a cardboard box in the turning lane of US 183, and we discussed the future of the zine after the rise of the Young Pretender Nate. (I can call him Nate when we're at war.) After hearing ansat's long, twisted, story of sex, money, and betrayal, we set out to publish the truth, along with the help of a few loyal contributors who had not been subverted by Nathan's -- I mean Nate's -- lies. After several attempted firebombings on my office foiled by the rain and wet cardboard, we moved my office and operations to an undisclosed location in a street outside the University of Texas. Despite complaints about the road narrowing, we've worked night and day to bring you the issue you now hold on your computer. We will reclaim the ACP complex, and I urge you all to take up arms and aide us in the fight against the tyrant IWMNWN. Of course, I will join in the fighting as soon as they tell me where the complex is. So rally around the true SoB and recognize ansat's claim to succession, at least until I claim it for myself. In Defense of the SoB We All Love, Captain Moonlight
Dark Crystal Sphere Floating Between Two Universes
Flying Rat's Nostril
Howler in the Shadows
I Wish My Name Were Nathan
Nemo est Sanctus
I'm sure I've said this before, but there are few things that irritate me so much as to be told something I have experienced is impossible. This often comes up when discussing Capitalism with the bourgeois. Whether due to shame -- an attempt to find an excuse for their self-centeredness -- or due to actual, innocent inability to see reality, I don't know, and my usual answer is more trite than thorough: I point out that it is one human's nature, but not mine, and that their selfishness is no justification for a parasitic worldview. They may consider it impossible, but I simply do not see the world their way. I do not live for money, I do not feel a need to beat out my neighbor, and I am not aware of feeling a desire to stockpile that particular fetish.
There is a level of truth to it, though. Capitalism has deformed human nature into a form that allows those benefiting from the inequalities of capitalism -- and those who merely hope to -- to justify their predation.
A number of views of human nature compete in our intellectual world, our marketplace of ideas. Many or most people have some combination of these views, although few examine why, or even what, they believe.
The Capitalistic view of human nature should seem familiar to most people. After all, this is the concept we are brainwashed into believing. As Marx said in The German Ideology: "The ideas of the ruling class are in every epoch the ruling ideas." This is to say, the ideology of the ruling class is the ideology of the nation, and our ruling class has its ducks in the proverbial row on this one. Our schools, our courts, our advertising all conspire to teach us this distorted perspective. Worse, the people want to believe it, for reasons I will go into later. Suffice it now to say that this conception provides a cover to allow people to think and do what they are made to believe they want to, without bowing down to idols like "virtue", "morality", "justice", or outdated systems of prescribed morality, like the Bible, the Quran, or the Declaration of Independence. This view of human nature frees the people to be the willing slaves of the ruling class. Heil Progress!
The fundamental principle of the Capitalist view of human nature is the assumption that humans exist in a "war of all against all". This draws from the first prophet of Capitalism: Hobbes, in his book Leviathan. From the time it was published Hobbes was persecuted by those who misinterpreted his work. Many, for example, saw it as an atheistic work. This atheistic distortion has continued into Capitalism in those who see the negative in man to be inherent, somehow genetic, indeed "human nature", while Hobbes himself would undoubtedly have traced it to the fall of man. Those who see the war of all against all in the contemporary manner of Capitalism are also guilty of another misinterpretation of which Hobbes would be quite sad.
This is not a critique of Hobbes, and I do not want to devote too much time to philosophical disputes between he and I. (There are many.) Neither do I intend to dwell on how the world-historical situation in which he was writing influenced his beliefs. I mean only to point out his position as prophet of the Capitalist order -- and that he probably intended no such thing. He was quite clear in the beginning of his Leviathan that he was discarding the concept of the summum bonum, the absolute good. He gave no reason for this, and was probably well aware his work was not a self-contained system of philosophy, but an intentional distortion of the world for the sake of demonstrating a point.
This distortion has become enshrined into the dogma of the Capitalist faith.
The second prophet of the Capitalist faith, and one who I suspect knew he was distorting someone, was T.H. Huxley. (He was the grandfather of the Aldous Huxley who wrote the books Brave New World and Brave New World Revisited, et al.) Huxley generalized this distortion of the world of man as a war of all against all into a world of all species against all species, and into a concept where not only every species but every individual within every species was in similar competition. Huxley was a Darwinian revisionist, and some of his work on evolution as being less gradualistic than Darwin conceived is without doubt of value, but intentionally or not, Huxley presented a worldview heavily distorted against cooperation and towards competition, which has yet to be rectified in the common mind. (I suspect most people still believe the phrase "survival of the fittest" is from Darwin.)
The impact of this distortion was to make it justified as not only a feature of fallen human society, but as an inherent rule of all nature for humans to be willing to destroy each other. Indeed, it was made a relative good for an individual human to destroy those around him. These features of "social Darwinism" and eugenics were most pronounced in the earlier part of this century. Hitler is often cited as one of them, although he was more altruistic than our contemporary Capitalists. Hitler had an understanding of cooperation as a factor in evolution, though he restricted it to those of an individual's race. Contemporary Capitalists deny the value of cooperation except where necessary for individual gain. Another celebrated early proponent of social Darwinism and eugenics was Margaret Sanger, founder of Planned Parenthood. This group proudly states it follows in her ideological footsteps, and indeed does so. (See any research into birth control activities in other nations, where Planned Parenthood is more drastic and so more noticeable.) What Planned Parenthood tries to gloss over is Ms Sanger's open intentions to exterminate undesirables, such as the poor and economically nonproductive, as well as Catholics and members of racial minorities.
These features of the Capitalist worldview can thus be summarized briefly: "The world," the Capitalist says, "is a battle of all against all. As a zero sum game, in order for me to benefit, others must suffer. Even if I understand this to be true I deny responsibility as I see it as an inevitable feature of the natural laws of this world. After all, humans are the sum of millennia of evolution which have programmed us to destroy everything weaker than ourselves and to take what they have, merely to survive. If I didn't destroy those around me, they would destroy me. We have a genetic predisposition for this. It is human nature," the Capitalist concludes, "for me to act in a way once considered evil. It is my nature, and if I don't I shall be destroyed."
This distorted worldview, which is by all neutral definitions a psychosis, leads to great amounts of fear, rage, hate, and shame, some of the impacts of which I will get into in the section on how and why Capitalism distorts the subjective world of those of us colonized by it. First, though, let us look at some impacts of this worldview on Capitalist anthropology.
By anthropology here I mean its most basic meaning: the study of man. Any worldview -- by humans, at least -- must include a set of beliefs concerning what man is, where he comes from, where he is going, and so on. (Some deny that an atheistic or skeptical society has such beliefs, but I hold "indeterminate" to be a valid value.)
Capitalism's anthropology is particularly morbid. Capitalism, first, presumes all humans to have only the value they have or can take. This fundamental worthlessness of humans is often denied, but obviously true to those who are not willfully blind. Each individual is taken to have value relatively, not absolutely. (This is an obvious function of the Capitalist concentration on the supply-demand relationship.)
This relative value takes its scale from a number of origins. Some judge human worth by the amount of money they own, or the economic influence they control, and so on. All of these are smoke screens. The fundamental expression of the worthlessness with which the Capitalist views humans is the fact that, in Capitalism, every human becomes nothing more than a commodity, something manufactured, bought and sold not because it is considered valuable in and of itself, but merely for the accumulation of more commodities. The fundamental value -- in Capitalism -- of any human being is how much they can produce, how much value they can receive for their labor time, a.k.a. their life.
As an historical aside, it is relevant here to take a glance over our collective shoulder at the Christian anthropology, at least briefly. The Christian worldview forms the basis of the current Western worldview not because the latter is built on the former, but due to historical happenstance. The Capitalist worldview is absolutely distinct from Christianity, despite claims occasionally made to the contrary.
There are two essential features of Christian anthropology that must be contrasted against Capitalism to relatively see the systems. (These are, of course, not exclusive to Christianity.) The first has to do with the value of humans. In Christian philosophy, every human is of infinite intrinsic value. This is value that is not put into the person, and cannot be taken away. It holds for every person, whatever their condition. One historical way this concept has been expressed is: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." Obviously, this is anathema to Capitalism, which views humans through exchange value, although some make lip service to humans as use value. (In truth, a human of no use value to the ruling class also has no exchange value, but the commodification of humans makes the dominant perspective the exchange value. A simple proof of this: A poor child dying of leukemia has no use value to the ruling class. Therefore, among the ruling class, she also has no exchange value. To the child's mother, this child is of infinite value in and of itself, that is to say infinite use value. However, this mother cannot exchange anything for this child's life, and hence cannot interest the ruling class in mere matters of morality. The exchange value, dominated by the ruling class, shatters to insignificance the infinite value of a daughter to her mother.)
Second, and perhaps more discussed, is the origin of evil in man. The Capitalist considers evil to be inherent in man, and some claim this is an outgrowth of -- or at least compatible with -- Christian philosophy. This is, of course, wrong. Christian philosophy does not blame evil in the person as being inherent "human nature", but rather the effect of an historical and rectifiable event, i.e. the Fall in the Garden. To the Christian, every human is inherently good. Evil actions are the result of man's unfortunate, fallen, imperfect state.
These two -- Christianity and Capitalism -- do not, incidentally, exhaust the possibilities. I will briefly run through some others.
Orthodox Marxism tends to consider human nature to be something quite malleable. The orthodox Marxist tends to think that if the government was good, and sufficiently strong, people could be forced, coerced, or trained into being good. This is true to an extent, but is not absolutely true. No matter what the upbringing, if someone were put into a Capitalist society they would begin again to manifest the failings of Capitalist man, unless they were particularly strong in will.
Anarchism is often presented as believing that humans are inherently good, and this is often used as a critique against them. In actuality, although some Anarchists hold this, by no means do all. Some, indeed, take the Capitalist claim that man is inherently evil, and use that for the explanation of why they accept no master, who by definition could not be a "better" master than he himself. Anarchism is too broad a trend to exhaust its anthropology here.
There is one Anarchist who must be made note of here, though, and that is Prince Petr Kropotkin, who styled himself an Anarcho-Communist. He was a scientist, and like Huxley was a Darwinian revisionist. Unlike Huxley, though, Kropotkin focused on cooperation rather than competition.
In his work Mutual Aid as a Factor in Evolution, Kropotkin destroyed the claim that there is some kind of scientific "proof" that competition is the be all and end all of evolution, a position Darwin would never have conceded to. Darwin held, and Kropotkin expanded upon this claim, that there are two trends in a species, that to cooperate and that to compete, and that these trends manifest themselves under various conditions. Some of these conditions have been since examined even more thoroughly, though the tests are often framed so as not to make clear all the results. (Frequently, they concentrate on phenomena such as overcrowding, without using the results to form adequate political conclusions.) More on some of these conditions will be said in the section on Capitalism's deformation of man.
As an aside, there are some that don't bother with what man is qua man, and instead hold that some individual men are simply superior, in one way or another, than others. This sometimes takes the form of a superior group, such as in National Socialism, or a vanguard who are simply more aware of the truth, such as in Bolshevism. Some hold that some individual is simply superior, as Nietzsche's superman. Some forms of Gnosticism apparently held that some men were superior to others, although this is debated. If they did, it would likely be along the lines of the feature in some forms of Protestantism, holding that some are saved and some are not, and this salvation makes the individual metaphysically better.
The worldview we are to examine here is Capitalism, and the question is the nature of all men. Having set the terms of Capitalist anthropology, and set them in the perspective of other worldviews, I now turn to the how and why of the matter.
Capitalism cannot be said to have directly caused the Capitalist view of human nature. Someone had to have come up with the idea first; indeed, a class of people did. Capitalism's beneficiaries, though, continue to teach and indoctrinate so as to make sure this worldview remains dominant -- and virtually uncontested.
The fundamental manner of teaching this is as explained above: the devaluation of humanity into a commodity. As less and less people came to have wealth and control, as political power concentrated into smaller and smaller entities, people came to "owe" their labor -- their life -- to those who controlled the flow of money. That is to say, people in general ceased to be able to live without selling themselves into wage-slavery. This was not a conspiracy, so far as I know, so much as a snowball effect. Some people had the wealth, and they controlled more. For whatever reason, these first Capitalists increased their holdings. They came to see that if they told the people they were worthless, and if they forced these people to act as if they were worthless, they would be able to increase their economic power.
People not being inherently evil, these early Capitalists needed to come up with an excuse why they had more than others. We see this in the prejudices against Blacks as being inherently inferior, and hence calling poverty and slavery upon themselves. Similar claims were made regarding all colonized people, such as the Irish and Native Americans, and continue to be made. Otherwise intelligent people can with all conviction say that the poor are universally lazy, that the beggars in the streets universally choose their lifestyle, and not even realize the prejudice and hatred in such statements, or wonder on what they base these beliefs. In the past, much of it was an excuse for shame. Today, this shame is hardly conscious, as people go their entire lives without having such prejudices challenged. People simply don't realize it is wrong -- much like the segregation and slavery of the past.
These excuses work along with and perpetuate the economic development of Capitalism. Once the Capitalist has deluded himself into believing he is somehow doing the working class a favor by his parasitism, he can continue to do what he wanted to in the first place -- drain away the last of the workers' commodities. As he has "proven" to his satisfaction that the worker has no value aside from his productivity -- which is to say the worker has no value other than the worker's value to the Capitalist -- he can believe he is doing the worker a favor by commodifing him.
(Keep in mind that this trend works along with the trend to decrease the number of hands holding the money -- in other words monopolies are an inevitable result of Capitalism unless it is restrained by another force. In our country, this opposing force is pretended to be the government, despite the fact that the government remains in the hands of the wealthy, and even if it were placed in the hands of the people, would be worthless there as long as the wealthy continue to blackmail the worker through his domination of the factories, and brainwash the worker through his domination of the schools and media.)
It is not enough for the Capitalist to control most of the money. He has worked himself and those around him into a worldview of wanting more. This feature of Capitalism makes it essentially a cancer on society. It can survive only so long as it devours. When a market is saturated, a new market must be created, so our cigarette companies use international trade organizations to bully open Asian markets, and our companies invent "planned obsolescence", which is why everything seems to break down so much faster. "They don't make them like they used to" is a Capitalist necessity. But there are more insidious ways that the Capitalist uses, and at least one of these has to do with programming of the America psyche.
Capitalism commodifies everything, and one of the ways this is least perceivable is that, now, Capitalism has actually managed to commodify money, divorcing it from its traditional ground in silver and gold. Not only that, but it has monopolized money, and found a way for a small group of Capitalists to profit from the "manufacturing" of money. This is not the place for a detailed analysis of the Federal Reserve, and such an analysis would probably be beyond my capacity. These are only a couple of things that need be noted here. (As an initial aside, on the subject of commodification, a few decades ago American money was commodified. There is nothing backing the American dollar except American guns. American money gets its value entirely relativistically, like stocks on the stock market. If ever certain nations lost their trust of or love for the American government, you and I would be sitting through a horrible depression. Somehow, I doubt the ruling class would find itself destitute.) Our money, when printed, is "loaned" to the United States government, who distributes it to the people. As this is a "loan", the government actually has to pay the people who loaned them the money, and these people are a corporation, not a branch of the government answerable to the people. Our government is democratic, and so has everything divided up among the people. The ruling class has to do all the governing, and you and I only have to pay the bills. This means we pay a fee for having our American monetary system.
Twisted as this is, it gets better. The government has established a monopoly on the publication of bills. Only one corporation may manufacture bills. If I printed bills which, for all practical intents and purposes, were dollar bills, I would be a criminal, and would go to jail. If these people print the same bill, they are businessmen, and I pay a fee for not having to bother with the freedom to manufacture the goods these people force me to use. What this means practically -- aside from all the other things that economics books talk about from the dangers of monopolies -- is that this corporation controls the interest rate. This interest rate, through magickal powers I don't quite understand, control "growth" in our market. In practical terms, the government controls unemployment.
The ruling class does not want universal employment. The ruling class wants all the economic power. By forcing unemployment to continue, they create a shortage of jobs and a surplus of workers. This means workers are forced into competition with each other, and so (1) have to accept lower wages or die, and (2) will not organize, because they don't trust the other workers and have to bow to the demands of the bosses not to organize. The ruling class has created something of a safety net to prevent people starving to death in the streets, at least to a degree: until the people are not quite at the point of revolution. When the people's spirit has been sufficiently crushed, you can be sure people will be starving to death again. Just looking at the poverty figures or visiting a couple of families on welfare will show you what it will look like, though on a smaller scale. The greatest humiliation in our nation is this: The ruling class wants unemployment; the people do not. The ruling class benefits from unemployment; the people suffer. The ruling class creates unemployment; the people pay for it. The ruling class has a demand for unemployment, and in all fairness they should pay for it. In all callousness, the working class benefits from people starving in the streets. That increases agitation, speeds revolution, and shrinks the working pool, boosting wages. But the working class pays a disproportionate amount of welfare. There was a time when noblesse oblige made this concept laughable, but today we "know" human nature justifies the ruling class's behaving like maggots and vultures.
This domination of the Federal Reserve is a single example of another larger phenomenon. Capitalism depends on consumption. When a market does not exist, Capitalism forces one. It is therefore in the interests of Capitalism to create shortages where none exist. This is a well known phenomenon, and is blatantly obvious in much of our advertising. A desire is created for a new product, and then this desire is made into a "need", and then people can no longer conceive of a life without the product.
In my opinion, one of the worst uses of this tactic is that addressed above: creating an artificial shortage of jobs, to force people to struggle against each other instead of acting in solidarity. There are other bad ways too, though. The ruling class pretends there is a shortage of resources, so people are unwilling to support welfare bills and the like, despite the fact the people with the least to give are disproportionately charged. The ruling class creates shortages of necessary supplies, such as food. While this benefits economically the rich, the poor die, or at least go undernourished. In Boston, a malnutrition clinic was recently opened, because malnutrition exists in Boston at third world levels. That is not right in a country like ours, where no shortage exists, where farmers are paid not to farm, and where Capitalism artificially increases the prices. By a blind adherence to the price curve above all else, the human factor is lost. Where there is no shortage, where some can afford to waste, no one should die of want. That is not a statement of economics; that is true human nature.
Psychology experiments have been done on humans and animals as to what happens when shortages exist, and bear in mind that these shortages only need to be perceived. When these shortages appear to the people -- shortages of food, shortages of space, and so on -- some interesting habits arise. For one thing, cooperation goes down, and competition goes up. Every species has the habit of helping their own, unless there is a shortage preventing it. (Our greatest men have been those who help their own even when they personally suffer. The universal respect paid these people speaks volumes on human nature.) For territorial animals, this "shortage" of space can be merely perceived, etc. As Capitalism creates artificial shortages, so it increases artificial competition and artificially stops cooperation.
Another behavior that increases with shortages is aggression. Murder rates go up. Deviant sexuality goes up. In extreme cases, cannibalism -- a physical version of the way people destroy each other to get ahead -- occurs. Much of our society's ills "coincidentally" parallel what would be expected if we had shortages. Sickeningly, these shortages are man made.
Like the cycles of alcoholism and child abuse, this cycle of fear and lack of cooperation threatens to be intergenerational. There is some evidence that humans are born incompletely developed -- as fetuses -- and there is no doubt humans are influenced by their environment. Raise a child in constant terror of shortages -- or merely in constant terror -- and he will be more likely to be unable to see through the Capitalist lie. On a related note, see The Plug-In Drug on the terror-inspiring effects of television on children.
A bit more abstractly, this treatment of people as commodities causes them to be less interested in their work, less satisfied with their lives, and so on. Capitalism causes people to be less interested in themselves as humans, which perpetuates Capitalism just as does the use of this mythos for assuaging the remnants of bourgeois conscience and provide the petit-bourgeois with a worldview for getting ahead. People no longer see the value in themselves and in their work. (This phenomenon is also known as alienation.) This leads them to put less attention and effort, less care, into it. This is a downward spiral.
Before ending this essay, I will take a moment to summarize some of the most practical ways in which Capitalism, as described above, is in the process of destroying our nation, and our people.
i. Devaluation Causes Death
The Capitalist worldview presents, as demonstrated above, humans as valuable only through their exchange value. As this is hammered into the heads of the people, they come to have a diminished view of themselves, and of each other. The violent opposition to the value of human by virtue of being human reflects itself in the perceived value of the people to each other.
In our society, we are seeing a massive level of murder. This is not reflected in other nations, although they are moving in this direction. As they continue to destroy their economic opposition and cooperative movements, and "modernize" into Capitalist states, their murder rates will increase. Capitalism drives the individual not only to lesser assessments of his own value, but lesser assessments of his brothers' value. Hence, we see children killing without any conception of the evil of their actions. They see themselves as merely dispensing with something which no longer had exchange value to them. In a healthy people, a human is of infinite value. In our society, humans are sometimes of lesser value than shoes or cars.
On a more controversial note, Capitalism also has led to increases in abortion. A child is no longer seen as infinitely valuable. (I would say the child is not seen as a distinct human being, but this is only true in rhetoric and self-deception. All scientific evidence speaks otherwise. People don't like to admit it, but abortion is not a matter of human versus non-human. It is an issue of human with exchange value versus human without exchange value.) This child can be dispensed with because he is not seen as having intrinsic value, an expression of Capitalism's Big Lie.
Finally, as previously explained, eugenics is made palatable by Capitalism. Those who are not economically viable, those who no longer have exchange value for the ruling class, can be "put to sleep". This is only possible because Capitalism has destroyed the concept of human as intrinsically valuable.
ii. Devaluation Causes Depression
Capitalism tells the worker, he who must sell his lifeforce in order to physically survive, that he is worthless. Even those who have economic power enough to survive are told they are without value in and of themselves. I ought not to have, but when I began talking with members of socioeconomic classes significantly higher than my own, I was surprised at the degree of drug abuse, nihilism, and simple alienation present among them. As I say: I ought not have been surprised. Capitalism tells everyone they are intrinsically worthless.
This is more or less a definition of alienation, and it would be redundant to say this leads to alienation. It does lead to depression, though, with a constant feeling of despair and worthlessness. I suspect it leads even to a number of mental disorders considered physical. The constant stress and fear brought on by Capitalism likely lead to things such as clinical depression and schizophrenia, both of which are known to increase under stress. The current fad of drugging those who suffer from such maladies merely bolsters the ruling class, and can only last temporarily, or until we are all in a Huxlean soma-state. (Incidentally, recreational and escapist drug use among the people voluntarily also helps the ruling class, for the same reasons.)
On a related note, this leads to a degeneration in the schools. What once were seen as ways to form valued individuals is now seen as a way to make individuals "productive" or "employable". It sickens me how much people buy into this. One would expect even children can see through the way that, if schools are seen as ways to make them "employable" and agitate for "classes that will help" them "in real life", schools become merely another way they are dehumanized and devalued, but I know from experience this is not so. Even the children buy the lie.
From elementary schools to colleges, schools are seen only as ways to help people get jobs and make money, and this is a trend which must be battled from the outside. Those in the institutions generally can't even see they way they are being brainwashed.
iii. Devaluation Causes Degeneracy
Finally, and a bit more abstractly, the devaluation of humanity by Capitalism leads to increased degeneracy in the nation. As everything is seen only in its capacity to increase economic power, values of all kinds, and especially the value of humans as individuals, go out the proverbial window. As one facet of this, I will look at the commodification of sex, but this is merely one way in which this takes place.
Capitalism commodifies everything. This is the only way the Capitalist can measure how much he dominates his fellow man, if he has a scale for measuring this domination. Sex does not escape this. Not only is sex devalued and dehumanized, which helps the ruling class but is not my direct focus here, sex becomes merely another thing to sell. Unfortunately, the fundamentalist Capitalist, who has lost the ability to view the world objectively, cannot see the evil in this, but those who can view the world without the Capitalist distortion see the evil here.
In our society, sex is used in a number of ways. It is used to sell; not only is advertising entirely divorced from reality, it is distorted from its former use as a means of informing the consumer of a product to a brainwashing tool whereby people react emotionally rather than intellectually, and consume rather than choose. The defense of this advertising as "free speech" benefits only the ruling class. Pornography is a similar matter. Most people, capable only of parroting the lines fed them by the ruling class -- "Pornography is free speech" -- cannot see reality. There is no comparison of free speech between the ruling class and the ruled class. The ruling class rules the presses, rules the television stations. They and they only benefit from our current economic structure, and by making everything a commodity -- even sex, even pornography -- they continue to dehumanize the worker and bleed us of power and life. The worker has no such thing as "free speech", and the ruler needs no governmental protection to express his.
This essay only goes over the Capitalist deformation of humanity in broad terms. As a way of explaining the world, and thereby excusing the excesses of Capitalists, this has risen into the dominant worldview. No lie can survive when the people are educated, but right now, at this stage in history, the people are not only blind, the people seem to want to stay blind. Only by opening their eyes can the people ever come to be free.
The Revolution is now. Now and forever. The fundamental creed of Anarchism, perhaps the only thing that holds together not only all true Anarchists, but all lovers of Freedom everywhere, is that the Revolution is a constant battle.
Not everyone uses those terms. Jefferson spoke on the need for the tree of liberty's need to be watered with the blood of tyrants and patriots. Trotsky said: "The conquest of power by the proletariat does not complete the revolution, but only opens it." (And we are not even to that point.) Here in Ireland we have had a tradition of at least one rising a generation.
The most important thing in any battle is to identify the enemy. Those who work for your objective are not your enemies, and any time you can live in coexistence with them, do so. The enemies of freedom are enough, without making the friends of freedom personal enemies. The enemies of freedom understand this, as well, and they push the people into battles against each other. Always look to see who benefits from any ideological split, and any time you see a group supported or opposed in the media.
Who is the enemy?
The Cold War was expressed, strategically, in two terms: Containment, and Rollback. Enemies of freedom will never cease to exist. They can't all be put up against the wall. Neither can patriots, however, and that is why the Revolution is permanent. Neither force can ever win.
Today, the nation state has taken institutionalized form. If anyone knows a way of rollback from this, I will be more than happy to find out. It seems to me that at this point in time that is not possible. Even if a state is overthrown, the bourgeois ruling class will fill the vacuum with a new state. (What is the UN, if it isn't a way of appointing who is and is not an acceptable state, and divvying up the world among those accepted powers?) The only way I can see of pushing back State powers is to divide up those states further -- that is, by supporting every nationalist resistance group, every separatist movement, anywhere.
Since rollback is not possible, that leaves containment, and that is mostly what I want to talk about. For someone who supports freedom and opposes State power, containment must take the form, at this time, of opposing forms of internationalist government, and especially world government. This is in every form -- the United Nations, the European Commonwealth, the World Trade Organization, the World Court. They do not support the people; they support the bourgeois nations that dominate them. When has Britain ever followed the World Court, except when it served them? They have been found guilty of killing Irish nationals by the World Court. What happened to them? When has the United States, or its client state Israel, ever followed the United Nations's commands? How many UN resolutions have opposed United States's or Israeli action? Could Indonesia have gotten away with the slaughter and occupation in East Timor if the bourgeois nations didn't want East Timorese oil?
It is important for all lovers of freedom to look into groups, and support those who oppose world government, opposing those who support world government. The media knows that this is the only danger. "Safe" alternatives are presented, so that people can think they are making a decision, when really it is just between globalist number one or globalist number two. Very few groups or individuals oppose world government, and those are always vilified by the media.
But it is necessary that people not be fooled by the media. Use the media's opposition to groups and individuals as signs they need to be investigated. It is not necessary to agree with them on every point to know that they are allies. Those battles can come after world government has been contained. We can take back our nations; it would be hard to "take back" a United Nations, for which not even show elections take place.
So that, in a nutshell, is what the Revolution is, now. Opposition to globalism.
One battle at a time.
I was fortunate. I was raised in a family that did not deny differences between people, but also did not play them up. I was taught from ground zero that people are people, and after that they are Black or White, male or female, smart or otherwise. I saw the differences in people, and because I know the differences do not make people better or worse, I can celebrate these differences.
In a way I did not understand at the time, I was raised a feminist. By that I don't mean I thought women were better, or should try to be imitation men, or any of the other things that have made "feminist" such a dirty word even most girls disown it. I mean I saw women as people, deserving as much respect as male people. Probably the biggest way I didn't realize I was a feminist was that I always thought everyone else felt the same way, at least every reasonably intelligent member of my generation. I didn't see myself as a feminist. I saw myself as fair. For the most part I thought the women's movement had won.
It was essentially not until high school that I finally realized I was wrong.
I grew up in a kind of ivory tower. I dealt only with intelligent, middle class overachievers in my classes in school, and had few friends even in my middle class neighborhood. I was aware bad things happened, but it was with what the French call savoir -- head-knowledge -- not connaitre -- heart-knowledge. I was not involved with the social lives of the mainstream, and didn't want to be. I was having enough trouble trying to survive high school, determine the flaw in Communism, choose between Gnosticism and Catholicism, the things that were important to me. Again, in a way this was fortunate, even if reality was a rude, late shock.
In my tenth grade year, a male friend and I, sitting in debate class, were discussing the importance of forming friendships before relationships, and about how a relationship cannot thrive if it is based solely on the physical. We listened with what was for me at least genuine shock when an otherwise intelligent, middle class girl of such strict Baptist upbringing she fled weeping to the storage room when I pulled out my role playing game handbooks explained to us about how one only gets to know someone after forming a bond based on lust. She probably couched it in terms like "attraction" and would have been shocked herself to hear herself rephrased honestly, but that's the way it was. I don't make a habit out of euphemising what disgusts me.
The girl thought of herself as a feminist, or at least a reasonably liberated woman. And I don't mean one of the "do-me" feminists. She seemed to have reasonable self-esteem. She simply had failed to grok the entire anti-lookist trend in the feminist movement, or to understand that if women -- and men -- are to be treated as people, they have to be seen as more than objects. For all her self-righteous rhetoric, she failed to judge by the content of a man's character. I understand now she was a product of her society. I was a product of ideals. I chose to see what was right, and oppose what merely was.
But still I had hope. I assumed most girls were not like that, or that this was simply bluster, mirroring what guys wanted to hear, for right or wrong.
A more painful awakening came in late high school, when I fell in love. I played the game the way I thought it should be played. I was there to listen to her when she was hurt. I talked to her about her feelings, and about her family. I encouraged her interests in art and music, and tried to understand her world. I tried to avoid complimenting her on superficials, like appearance, and was rather disheartened at the emphasis she placed on the few times I did comment on them. I didn't have as much information on teenaged girls' psychology back then, or the awareness that women in our society are pathologically insecure about their appearance, and I was more interested in the person than the packaging.
I also refused to go to bed with her. That, although not the only factor, was the factor that ended our relationship. Treating her like a person and not a thing, like a human being rather than a sex object torpedoed our relationship.
My subsequent relationships, although I have learned a bit more how to bolster a girl's esteem without making appearance the main factor in a relationship, have not improved my opinions. I still feel traumatized that a relationship cannot be sustained in this society if a guy wants to respect those boundaries and his girlfriend's personhood. I am unhappy to see women's magazines -- fashion magazines, Cosmopolitan, and the like -- scattered around the bedroom floors of adolescent girls. I'm bothered by the emphasis guys put on girls' appearance, and even more bothered by the emphasis girls do.
It was more than two decades ago when Anais Nin wrote these words ("In Favor of the Sensitive Man," Playgirl, September 1974):
The new type of young man I have met is exceptionally fitted for the new woman, but she is not yet totally appreciative of his tenderness, his growing proximity to woman, his attitude of twinship rather than differentiation.
She appears to have thought this was a temporary problem. Indeed, later in the same essay she says:
This loss [of the ability to govern oneself] is a transitional one: It may mean the beginning of a totally new life and freedom. The man is there. He is an equal. He treats you like an equal. In moments of uncertainty you can still discuss problems with him you could not have talked about twenty years ago. Do not, I say to today's women, please do not mistake sensitivity for weakness. This was the mistake which almost doomed our culture. ... Let us start a new regime of honesty, of trust, abolishment of false roles in our personal relationships, and it will eventually affect the world's history as well as women's development.
Perhaps I live in a cultural backwater. Perhaps I have been merely unlucky. All I can say is she seems sadly optimistic from my perspective twenty-three years later.
I have a lot of anger towards the young women, my contemporaries. I know that this is not entirely justified. I have seen some of the trauma that girls go through today, have been exposed to the same media. Nonetheless, I feel this rage, and I feel this rage is an acceptable feeling. One of the women's movement's most important advances was giving women back the right to feel rage, and it is important men are not denied this same right, so long, of course, as the rage is safely and sensitively expressed.
As a male feminist, I feel my contemporaries have betrayed me. I feel that the new woman was not there to pick up the ball. It can't be done by guys alone, and guys will have no real motivation as long as women put up with the same situations as in the past. The way women allowed the women's movement to be coopted, and the emotional advances to go unsolidified -- though understandable in the world-historical situation -- still hurts.
Our society is pathologically anti-girl, and anti-woman. Much needs to be done to raise everyone's consciousness, and especially to clean up the media. I don't have the answers. Nonetheless, more needs to be done by today's girls. As Nin said, "The man is there." Twenty-three years later, he's still looking for the truly feminist woman.
About half an hour ago I finished Martian Time-Slip, by Philip K. Dick. It was the most terrifying novel by him I have ever read, and I have read close to a dozen. Even with the universe decaying in Ubik, there was not nearly the horror of Martian Time-Slip. The descriptions of schizophrenia and mental illness hit too close to home.
Reading it in school, I think I triggered a minor psychotic episode. It was horrifying. Low grade hallucinations, such as color intensification; confusion; anxiety; etc. I realized what was happening pretty quick, dropped a ginseng, and rode it out, so it didn't get too intense. I could tell myself that the guy in the business suit on the phone, while I could not entirely rule out that he was watching me and calling in to my enemies, he probably wasn't. I could tell that when a woman walked by and said, "It's a way of control. Get our hopes up and then dash us. It's the way they brainwash us. It's the way they brainwash us." it was probably coincidence. I could tell, intellectually, it was not that everyone was out to get me, but just that this was the way I was temporarily viewing the world. During the worst episode, in 1994, it took me some time to regain control. I had some part of me that constantly knew it was in my head, but that part didn't gain control quickly.
I had myself under control when Jujube came by. I started to tell her about it, but she didn't seem to understand or empathize. I don't suppose most people can. Afterwards, it flared up again, but fairly minorly. I found myself wandering the third floor of some building, not knowing where I was or where I was going, wondering why room 308 looked like somewhere I had never been before, until I realized that I had a class in another building. I looked out a window -- down the hall and about twenty yards from me -- and got totally depressed about how high up it was, to the point I was almost crying. But levels of confusion like that are nothing compared to sitting against the wall by the library, shaking all over and staring wide eyed, wondering about all the people around me, like during the worst of it. It sounds like nothing when I write it down. That kind of horror, I guess, can't be expressed.
The most amusing part, though, was when I got to class. It was a good thing I decided to go to French class today, since it turns out we had an exam. I got very anxious, understandably, but then I started hallucinating all these black dots, and they were flying into the center of my vision, like when you have oxygen deprivation or are too tired, giving me the weirdest kind of tunnel vision and leaving me fascinated with one word at a time, which temporarily made it impossible to make sense of anything. But I nipped that in the bud, and at least answered every question.
Anyway, it was scary. I got to wondering if the reason I have never had a physically satisfying sexual experience, and why M.'s explanations of why coitus is more emotionally meaningful than foreplay because it somehow is more intimate or draws people together or something, may be because I simply cannot empathize like that. I can empathize with people, but I can't really contemplate the bringing together. That makes no sense. I'm trying to say that I understand a parasitic relationship, and I understand a symbiotic relationship, and I understand a master-servant relationship, and all that. I understand a relationship where two persons work for the same power -- be it person or ideal. I don't understand bringing together. I guess that is what makes sex matter, but I don't... It doesn't mean anything to me. I don't know.
I wonder if people would tell me that I should be more willing to give up control if they knew that it is only my control that stops time from slipping and the earth from stopping to exist. If I lost control, I would be nothing more than a weeping, trembling mess, wondering when I was going to literally fall apart, on the atomic level.
I need to get past that. I'm going to move on.
The ordeal was so stressful that, when I got home, with a splitting headache, disoriented (I had to keep reminding myself I was in a car, or I'd have never made it home), and nauseous, I just went to bed. I have no idea how long I slept. It must have been about two or three hours, I suppose. I woke up and heard cartoons from the living room, with the sun shining in the windows. I woke up terrified, unable to remember where I was, or what day it was, or what time it was, or what. I came out into the living room, and asked what day it was, whether I had slept until the next afternoon or something. I wasn't even coherent to myself, but my mother told be it was later in the afternoon, and my father had gone to pick Moonlight up, since they were letting me rest.
I had a strange, homoerotic dream, but I feel relieved in one sense, because I had heard that if one does not experience nocturnal erections it is a serious physical problem, and I had no reason to believe I did. I have never had a nocturnal emission, and generally don't experience erections when I wake up, and have never had a coital dream, so I was beginning to think there was something wrong there, but I was aware I was erect in my sleep, though I can't be sure whether I became aware of this before or after I woke up. In any case, this was the dream:
I was at the University, at the student union. It was some kind of resort or hotel, though, and had been moved down to around 23rd street or Martin Luther King boulevard. I don't know why I was in the resort. I was a student, and knew I was a student, and that I was not very accepted there. I think I lived in a nearby dorm or something. It was night, and there was some kind of party there, and there I was. I was incredibly lonely, and somehow had befriended this boy. I get the feeling he was in his mid to late teens, and he liked me, too. I don't think there was ever any sexual activity between us, but there was an undercurrent of homoerotic tension I can recognize at least in retrospect. I can't recall if I recognized it then.
I know his parents didn't like me, though I'm not sure why. Perhaps it was a social class thing, since I get the feeling they were of a significantly higher socioeconomic class than me, but it could also have been a simply social thing, if I, as a student, didn't belong in their resort. Whatever the case, he and I spent some time together.
I remember looking for someplace to get something to eat. It was late. There was a bar on the corner, which I went to frequently, but I couldn't bring my friend there because he was underage. I kind of remembered a convenience store down the street that would be open at that time, but I decided to accept my friend's invitation and go back to the resort. They had a kitchen downstairs, and he and I went in there. We were joined by two teenaged girls, who I suppose to have been his sisters. I think they were older than him, so if he was about fifteen they would be about seventeen or so. Perhaps one was his sister and one was her friend. In any case, they were not exceptionally attractive, but they were pleasant looking, and I took a fancy to one of them. I was sexually aroused, and I figured I would push my luck, and walked up behind one of them, and put my arms around her waist and held her. As I recall, she said something sarcastic, or something. She did not physically pull away, but she emotionally did, if that makes any sense. She did not try to resist, but she made it known she wasn't interested. I don't really remember anything after that.
I suppose that about covers today. I might write what I meant to write yesterday in a while, but for now I'm going to take a break.
To me, it is simply irrational to deny that we live in an existence of perpetual suffering and pain. That much is obvious to any but the willfully blind. The horror I try to hide from is that the very body I live in is an animate corpse that I watch die day by day. That is the horror of existence; not to simply be imprisoned in a torture chamber of reality, but to know I can't even trust my body, and to know that it could rot and die around me, and not to know what will happen to me when it is destroyed. Will I be trapped in this world of suffering without any ability to manipulate the world? That would be horrifying to the point of insanity. Does death bring liberation, back to the pleroma, or, if we fail to effect our salvation before our vehicle rots, will we be trapped eternally?
No one would be one of those Buddhists or Hindus that believes that reincarnation can be anything other than a more vicious evil than anything to come out of any Christian tradition if they were not willfully blind. This horror is the illumination of every path.
I can't sleep. I just dropped a ginseng. (Actually, it is dissolving in my mouth now.) In about fifteen minutes to half an hour, I ought to be relaxed enough to sleep, so I guess I'll write until then.
I'm not addicted, though. I took one on Tuesday, to get over the episode, and now one tonight, to sleep, but it isn't like I'm taking it daily or anything. These were just exceptions. If I start taking it to wake up in the morning, and then to go to bed at night, on a daily basis, then I'll start to get worried.
Then again, it took me a while to admit it when I was addicted, if I remember right.
I wonder sometimes if I ought to tell my parents about my ginseng thing. I don't really think I should. They don't need to worry about anything like that, and such a conversation would just end up revealing my unstable personality. (Maybe that's what I want.) I can't even bring myself to talk to them about my psychotic episodes. No one I've talked to really seems to understand what's up with them, and people just seem nervous when I bring it up.
Anyway, new subject. It is a bad sign when you begin spending a lot of time talking about drugs, just like one of the first signs of mental illness is interest in the disease.
I finished Martian Time-Slip yesterday. I think I said that. Today I finished Science, Politics and Gnosticism, which I started in New York, and read The Hindu View of Life straight through. I keep forgetting how many days have passed. I thought I had been reading it for about three days, but I keep reminding myself it has been one. Now, I'm reading The Nameless, a seventies horror novel Moonlight recommended to me some time ago. He recommended it to me unsolicited. He hadn't even just finished it. He just came up to me one day and offered it to me, saying I might like it. The feeling of the moment was very uncommon. It really felt more like an offering than a loan. Not a gift, an offering, and I don't mean he was offering to an idol or a god or anything, I just mean that there was something emotional involved, not just something rational. I really didn't know how to deal with it. I was touched, but hesitant to read it, and so it has sat on my shelf for a long time. I'm about fifty pages into it now.
I have something to say. I know this is an odd transition, and I usually try to make my journal sound chatty. Even when I've planned it out, I try not to let that be seen. But I don't know how I'm going to work this out, and it is something I've been thinking about, and I'm not going to be able to express it well, but the powder is coursing through my system and my keyboard feels like a musical instrument and Sinead O'Connor is playing in the background and I just want to make sure I say it.
I wish I could make a girl happy. I wish I could look into a girl's smile, and know that it was because of me, that it was for me. In a way, I think all my talk about changing the world, and getting published, and being written about, and all that is just so much verbiage. The only thing that really matters in this world is a girl's honest, innocent smile. I think that manifests itself in bed. To me, there is little sexual about sex. Those that can understand that, do. Those that don't understand... well, I don't think I could explain it in words. To me, sex should be playful, the lila of Krsna and the Gopis, if I understand the Sanskrit properly. (I never had doubts until I read some odd translations in Ramakrishnan, but I don't know that lila was one of the words I thought I misunderstood.) I was watching a video. I think it was Sinead O'Connor's new video. I think Kenny Rogers was in it. In it, they were in bed. It had nothing to do with sex, but it was intimate. Erotic would carry the wrong weight, but I don't know that intimate even pretends to say what I am pretending it says. I did not feel jealous, or repulsed. There was no judgment going on, or analysis, or any real rational thought at all. In an old set of terminology I used to use, it was an instance of higher emotion. I just began to weep. She was smiling, and it seemed a real smile. I could feel her when he held her, and it felt more... I don't know. More happy, more comfortable, more joyful, than anything else. I don't know. When I started this paragraph I knew I would gibber away and stop making sense, but I had to say it. It is the truth. The only thing that matters in this world is a girl's smile. Where did I read it? Something like, "Is the truth any less true because it is temporary?" That isn't it at all, at all. But it is what I mean. A girl's smile is temporary, and fleeting. It has two defined endpoints in time, and a defined region in space, but it is no less infinitely valuable for all the boundaries.
God, I've even lost myself! I have to move on, but to what?
The girl with the cane was not in class today. Have I written about her? Or was that only in a notebook? Or only in imagination? I don't care. The only thing the reader has to know is that she usually dominates my attention in class, for no good reason, and that she was not there to do that domination today. I amused myself most of the class period looking for wedding rings. I don't know what got me started on that, and I don't know how to tell if a ring is a wedding ring. I think a wedding ring is worn on the so-called ring finger of the right hand, but I could be wrong. That is where I used to wear my rings, but I was never married. I saw one girl who seemed married, and she had a ring on the ring finger of each hand. Neither of them looked like a wedding ring, though. They both looked too gaudy. But people have different tastes. There was at least one other girl with a ring that looked much more like a wedding ring, but then I got to thinking about how guys and girls approach the text of Colette's The Vagabond from differing perspectives because guys and girls have differing degrees of engulfment and abandonment anxieties. I took some notes on it. Maybe I'll transcribe them someday.
Now, I feel tense in some places -- shoulders and a line right down the spine -- but the flesh hanging off those places feels relaxed. It is a very odd feeling. I think I will have a cigarette and go to bed.
Oh, by the way, so I don't lose this information: My anthropology teacher told us a piece of information I had pored over the small medical library we have, trying to find out. I wanted to know -- for the all but abandoned tragedy -- what causes people suffering from malnutrition sometimes to bloat and sometimes to become emaciated. He said that the bloating is caused by water retention due to having a diet of sufficient calories but insufficient protein. I'll have to remember that.
That professor has an interesting class. He distorts information, but I'm sure it is honestly. I think he simply does not realize there is data out there that is just as valid but contradicts his worldview. But he also has fascinating trivia, and Moonlight and I, even though we both took the same course from him, sit there and swap trivia in the evening sometimes. The other day he explained why, if we drive with a pig strapped into the front seat of a car, get into an automobile accident, and have an airbag, the pig's neck will snap. It was quite interesting. (Though I don't plan on ever driving a pig anywhere strapped into the front seat, but you never know when data will come in handy.)
I suppose, finally, that is enough. As usual, my day was just classes and reading, and the only person I talked to who is not family was Jujube, into whom I ran on my way to class, so I really have no justification for going on like this, but I felt I needed to talk. I guess what it comes down to is that I didn't talk to anyone, and that is why I'm talking to myself. Or future generations, or whatever the fuck excuse I give myself to get my fingers moving so I don't go totally psycho and carry out that suicide fantasy with a real gun this time.
Damn. Almost losing it there. Easy now ansat.
I used to be able to talk to A. Sometimes. Even though we had some awful times together, I suspect that for the rest of my life -- and for the rest of eternity is eternal life is true -- I will remember her also as being the best times of my life. No one can ever replace or supersede what we had together. Maybe someone could give me experiences that would approach what we experienced, or that would be different but equally pleasing, but I could never regret my time with A. I tell people I don't know what happiness is, I don't know what makes me happy, crap like that. E. and I were telling each other that just the other day. It isn't entirely true, though. Laying in bed beside A., just holding her. Smelling her hair, and the incense she used to burn, the peach scent she wore, feeling the slick chill of the white nightgown she looked so beautiful in, I just stopped being me, and I think at that point I felt what people call happy. The only other times I remember experiencing anything like that is in religious ecstasy.
Two hideous drawbacks: I know perfectly well I may never have experienced that happiness, and have just invented it in retrospect. In a way that doesn't matter, since I can revisit in memory whatever I believe happened, and the facts don't matter. In another way, it is miserable, because I know I can never go back. The other drawback: The comedown's a bitch. I remember times in bed with A. when I'd go into convulsions, full body convulsions of such violence that she would get scared. I would cry about every time we had sex, laying there. I would hallucinate sometimes. I had visions of wars in the desert and things like that. In essence, the whole religious ecstasy thing, but it is a lot more horrible than people realize.
Sometimes I envy the people who have never experienced a high, because they never experience the real lows. They never even realize they live a low. Like animals. Not in real happiness, but blissfully unaware of the pain of reality. Like little lambs. If there was only less hostility and guile in people's eyes, I could almost look at them and see lambs. But, instead, I suppose I see whipped dogs, who haven't learned to trust, not quite knowing why they are being beaten, but knowing they don't like it.
God! I'm losing myself again. But everything is so pleasantly real right now. I'm having trouble hitting the right keys. A couple of times I have thought one word and typed something utterly different. But the colors are real, the light is playing so crisply, I suppose that means the ginseng is now well into my system, and I am feeling physically happy.
It's experiences like this that lend credence to my idea that there is no such thing as happiness, essentially, and that all people experience is an animal high, a strictly hormonal phenomenon that they pretend is an emotion. But I don't want to dwell on that. I'd rather believe my previously referred to old theory of two types of emotion. And now I believe I'll go have a smoke.
I had a couple of dreams. The latest one, I was going to a party at Harlequin's house. I don't remember too much from it now, and I think I had to walk through a city -- maybe not New York, but some city -- to his house. I remember getting there, and we were sitting smoking, with the lights out and the shades drawn, in the semidarkness. I had to go get something, but that's about all I remember. I wish I could remember the earlier dream. I did remember it, but I didn't write it down. Maybe I'll remember it in a bit.
I remember in a recent dream I had a bottle of beer to drink. The only thing I remember was being in my bedroom with the empty bottle, going to throw it away, and seeing the trashcan was too full and wondering what to do with it. I'm reasonably certain it was a dream, because I have had nothing to drink in some time, and nothing at all at home since the night I went out with Moonlight's friends. I'm not sure the dream is significant, though, as my trashcan is indeed overflowing, as usual, and the only concern it may represent is that of needing to empty the can. (This is, incidentally, a real problem for me, as it involves remembering what day the trash people come, and throwing everything away the night before. I suppose that would not be a concern for most people, but I have trouble with the time thing.)
I have read that paranoia presupposes megalomania. I don't know if, on this point, there is a distinction between paranoid schizophrenia and paranoia as an independent phenomenon. I have been thinking about that, and I can only come up readily with two ways this could not be true. Or could be not true, to be more accurate. Moonlight suggested that someone would feel people were out to get him because he felt worthless, and that was why they were after him. I suggested this was just an inverted form of megalomania, a kind of pride at being worthless, while a truly worthless person would be simply ignored. The first way I can think of this would be inaccurate is if the people who were out to get the individual were out to get everyone, or most everyone. This would be, I suppose, a general delusion, and perhaps not purely paranoia, but it does seem to me to be a counterexample to the statement paranoia presupposes megalomania. I came up last night, though, with what I think is a better counterexample. Every person needs a measure of attention. That is normal. An individual that did not feel he got enough attention, and who was incapable of conceiving of a way people would take interest in him without a critical or punishing motive could obviously create an entity to pay attention to him in a paranoid fashion. To me, megalomania implies the individual conceives of himself as better or more valuable than people in general, and this would not be a case of that at all, but would rather be an individual who felt he had as much value as anyone else and simply lacked the tools for conceiving of someone who cared about him in any other way.
In short, this individual presupposes hostility from people, and is incapable of conceiving of love, or at least of being loved. In this conception-poor mindset, he creates what his subconscious thinks it needs -- "caring" as attention -- and creates an insanity by failing to generate what he really needs -- "caring" as attention motivated by love.
"The poets? They stink. They write badly. They're idiots you see, because the strong people don't write poetry.... They become hitmen for the Mafia. The good people do the serious jobs."
Roses are red,
Violets are blue,
I kill children,
and....my what a lovely daughter you have ma'am.
Prometheus mourns, but does not weep
As he gazes across the wastes.
With tears in check, he surveys the deep
Destruction that man tastes.
On the peak of man's potential he stands.
He gazes deep into the chasm,
Ironically anticlimax beside the grand
Dreams he had for them.
A measureless grave, now dark
For man chose to ignore
When Prometheus brought the spark.
Man dubbed him Lucifer.
Man faltered and fled before the Light
And, by emotion, was scared to flight.
I was riding my bike home from school today when I glanced over into someone's garage and saw a man in his teeshirt and boxer shorts fire a gun at me -- and miss.
Immediately I wrenched my brakes and squealed to a stop, jerked the handlebars to the right, and bore down on that asshole, pedaling right toward him. He wouldn't forget his mistake.
(Let it be noted that this will not knock someone down if he is tall enough; rather, the pedalist and the pistolist shall soon be face to face straddling said bicycle.)
"Hey, asshole!" I screamed, so doing. "If you're gonna fire a gun at me, you're gonna HIT ME! Try again!"
He merely appeared shocked, bumbling towards apology but failing foolishly.
"Look, buddy! This isn't the kind of shit I want to put up with! I've got done here reading Henry David Thoreau, asshole; this is the man who'll show you where to put that gun! What kind of a man is playing with a gun in his underwear in the middle of the afternoon except a stupid fuck like you who has no clue why he's alive at all? Do you even know why you're doing this?
"(Go ahead, buddy, lift that gun again! I'm waiting for my final release!)
"It's a damn shame, the state society's in nowadays. What even sucks worse is the fact that it's been this sucky for centuries! If not one kinda suckiness, another! And why? I think it's shits like you who brandish weapons! Small arms, machine guns, cannons, military airplanes, nuclear bombs -- one story. Deception, wrath, greed, envy, selfishness, prejudice, outwardly projected self-disgust -- another! It all makes me sick! My nose is running, you asshole, and all I want is inner peace!
"For some reason, I thought I should be comfortable in detesting and fearing the big stinging arms of our out-of-control fat-ass federal government -- the FBI, CIA, ATF, IRS, and the W.T.F. -- all insane fuckin' unsupervised masses of bent people out to fuck over their neighbors. There's no pretty word for it, buddy, that's what they're out to do -- to sidestep every law and bill of right we think protects us so they can forward their wacked-out agenda of death, fear-mongering, war-propagation, thought-crime, and all-out rudeness!
"But now, looky here. Like the local shock-jock media has been telling me for years, I really DO have to fear the jerks who live up the street, because they COULD be murderers- and rapists-in-training, only waiting for the right moment to assert their God-given rights to be complete fucks!
"(Why aren't you doing anything with that goddamn penis-extension gun of yours, you shit?! Aim it AT MY HEAD and make it DISAPPEAR!)
"Well, you know what? I'm sorry for you! I'm sorry for everyone living! Maybe I don't know them personally, but I know that for the most part they've been raised under the control of cultures and societies and power structures whose only purpose is to keep themselves going -- no matter how unjust, silly, unscrupulous, inefficient, or altogether mean they are. No government will allow its citizens to deny its right over their lives. No economy will train its workers to be wise. No society will allow nonconformance to its basic precepts. Why? Because then they'd be committing suicide! What sort of guillotine would allow its blade to freely leave, dull its edge, and put itself to the purpose of peace? What sort of electric chair would allow its straps to contemplate the beauty of existence rather than hold some poor fuck down while his muscles tear and his skin melts? They'd be worthless, wouldn't they?
"This is what we are! We are tools! We are cogs in a machine! We are codependently useless unto ourselves -- self-loathing in fact -- only useful to external goals and needs, whether it be the circulation of money or the proliferation of megamonopolistic power structures or the funding of a government to smudge out the dignity of what nations still have it and reform them in our own image.
"And you know what? I wouldn't mind being a tool. I wouldn't mind being a cog in a machine -- if I had been led to believe this would be my destiny in this self-mutilating world! Please, stop spreading these lies about human rights and freedom and dignity, when you only denigrate and annihilate all of them behind our backs -- and in our faces -- anyway! Please, stop bellowing about the rights of the unborn American citizen when the ones already living, here and abroad, are learning through the harshest psychological and physical lessons the fact that such rights do not exist. Yes! If we can claim human beings have a right to liberty, equality, and the pursuit of happiness, and then work as hard as possible to classify, quantify, and pick away at that liberty, to make equality of misery the only real success, and to define happiness in such a way as to value finite material goods over the infinite beauty of Being -- then such rights must not exist at all!
"Why the drive to propagate the species when such truths are evident to anyone who stops for ten seconds to think about them? Is it that enough of us simply don't stop to think? Have we scheduled and commodified our time and energy to such a degree that self-reflection is no longer practical? Please don't tell me that you understand all of this and have children simply to hope that THIS one won't go wrong.... Have we so given up the idea of spiritual and psychological survival that we've died unto ourselves, converting our bodies into factories to toil for their own shoddy maintenance until they can produce an offspring that might WORK OUT?
"How many of us have honestly given up? How many of us no longer believe in having a meaningful life, something to be happy of having lived through? How many of us simply avoid committing suicide for the sole cause of preventing new suffering, a feeble justification for living through it?
"But look! WE'RE FOOLS. We've been suckered! And you know how? Too many of us actually believe all that shit matters! Look: where are our chains? Where are these machines? They're in our heads, buddy! Ain't that hilarious? All this oppression and strife and injustice -- between our ears! Fuckin'-A freakshow we live in, huh?
"What about physical pain, you ask? Ha! Also in our heads! The same thing that defines pain, makes us fear it! And what about it? Why do we fear pain at all? Because it intimates death? I'll ask you a metaphysical question, buddy: if infinity exists, can any of us really be separate from it?
"Pick up that gun, motherfucker, and aim!
"PICK IT UP! Yes, that's it, I'm SERIOUS.
"YES, AT MY HEAD, in my EAR, if you so please.
"Now, one last thing:
"SUFFERING IS A CHOICE. DO WHAT THOU WILT."
"Mary had a little lamb, little lamb..."
"Little lamb, little lamb....."
The man glanced briefly at his reflection in the bathroom mirror, before continuing to sing softly.
"Little lamb, little lamb...."
Once again, he slid the whetstone across the length of the knife blade.
It was a wicked blade. Custom made, not another one in existence. The blade itself was six inches long, tapering to a double-edged tip, like a trappers blade. Like something used to skin animals. The back of the blade thickened and became ridged, like the saw on a survival knife. The handle was a black plastic "comfort-grip", specially contoured for his fingers. It was a thing of beauty.
The singing had become a tuneless humming, a menagerie of seemingly random notes and rhythms. He glanced at the mirror quickly, somehow assured by the reflection looking back at him. He was a tall, well muscled man, with dark brown skin and piercing blue eyes. The harsh, fluorescent bathroom light reflected off of his cleanly shaven head, giving his skin the appearance of polished leather. He sat on a rickety, wooden stool set in front of the bathroom sink, clad only in a pair of baggy, white slacks.
"Ya know..." he said, glancing up at the mirror and then quickly away, as if afraid to meet his own blue-eyed stare.
"Ya know...," he started again, and then faltered.
"I--I once heard that lunatics were geniuses," he looked up at the mirror earnestly, as if seeking the reflection's approval.
The reflection looked down on him, good-natured humor in its eyes,
"No Larry," it said, "you are indeed many things, but a genius you are not."
"Why not?" he asked disappointed.
The reflection sighed heavily, it had explained this many times.
"You're not a genius, because you weren't born a genius."
"Oh." he said.
"Don't worry, Larry" it said reassuringly, "you don't need to be a genius. That's why you have me."
"Oh yeah..." he said unhappily.
"Larry," It said reproaching.
"Don't be upset. We can't all be geniuses."
"I wish I was a genius."
He carefully slid the knife into its sheath, pocketing the whetstone with his other hand.
The reflection was silent. He looked up at it and smiled.
It beamed down on him, its eyes filled with pride. Larry reached over to the towel rack and pulled the yellow, button-up shirt off of it. He slowly put it on, making sure that each plastic button lined up with each hole.
"Happy hunting," called the reflection.
"Thank you," mumbled Larry, clicking off the bathroom light.
It was raining outside. Larry grabbed his over coat and threw it over his shoulders. He liked the rain. It gave him the opportunity to wear his over coat, a dark grey thing, like what a detective would wear in the movies.
The rain also made hunting more fun. It was harder. The game few and far between. He glanced at the clock on the microwave, but it was flashing.
Twelve. Twelve. Twelve.
He hated clocks.
He left without locking the door, thieves were welcome to rob him. There was nothing in that apartment that he cared about. The elevator was out of order. That was just fine with him. He hated elevators, always had. Down four flights of concrete urine-smelling steps into a dilapidated front lobby. Empty. The decent people were all asleep. Out the front door and onto the streets. He flipped his collar up like he imagined a police detective would.
He began to sing softly as he walked, eyes flicking back and forth, scanning both sides of the street,
"London bridge is falling down..."
There! The corner. A glimmer of movement. He quickened his pace. The rubber soles of his tennis shoes began to squeak on the wet concrete. He slowed, silence was the key. Larry reached the corner soon enough... empty. The street was empty. Whatever he had seen was gone. If it had ever existed.
He was not disappointed. No. It was too early. The chase was half of the game.
The moon was almost setting. He couldn't see it through the clouds, but he could feel it. The rain had slackened off some. Good. It had been too heavy. He hadn't seen a soul. He was humming to himself. He had reached a small park and sat down on one of the benches. Off to the left three figures sat huddled around a small fire they had going in a waste basket. Larry was content to watch. One of them had to wander off eventually.
One of the three did indeed stand up, but he didn't just wander off as Larry had originally hoped. Instead, he began to walk over to where Larry sat This could be an interesting night indeed. Larry studied the man as he approached. Young, black, nervous. His friends had probably put him up to this. Larry's knife was in his hand, hidden in the folds of his over coat.
"Hey, mister," the man said as he drew near, "you got any spare change?"
"Hmm." Larry responded standing up. He proceeded to search the pocket of his left side. His right hand he kept perfectly still.
"Sorry," he said smiling, "no change today."
"Then how 'bout your wallet, mother fucker!" the man said, voice cracking, as he flipped a knife butterfly knife open.
Larry smiled. His adrenalin pumping. He was higher than any drug had ever gotten him. He wilted back, seeming to be afraid, then cat-quick he lunged forward. His left hand grabbed the man's wrist, while his right plunged his knife to its hilt in the man's belly. Warm, sticky blood rushed over his hand. God, how he'd missed that feeling. The man cried out and tried to stumble back, but Larry held him fast.
He was grinning now, positively enjoying himself. He twisted the blade and pulled violently to the right, ripping free of the man's abdomen. The faint aroma of bowel reached Larry's nostrils. He released the man, allowing him to stumble back. He cried out again as his intestines slipped free of their cavity and piled onto the grass.
The man's companions started forward, alerted by the man's cries. Larry was on them in a second. He leapt at the first man, forcing him down into the mud. The man's cry of surprise turned into one of pain as Larry began to wildly slash him. Instinctively, the man threw his arms up, blocking his face. Larry's first swipe went across the man's hand. The second landed on his face, cutting deeply from his right eye down past his chin.
Suddenly, the third man was there, grabbing Larry by the shoulders and pulling him off of the wounded man. Larry broke free and swiveled, bringing his knife up to a guard position. His opponent stood a few feet away from Larry, pointing something at him. A gun. Larry hated guns. They were no fun. The man glanced at his companion,
"Jack, you all right?"
The man didn't answer, he just held his face and screamed. Larry took the opportunity and threw his knife. It was not balanced, not designed for throwing, but it was heavy and Larry's aim was good. It smacked hard against the man's hand, knocking the gun free.
Larry tackled the man, forcing him face-down into the mud and beating him savagely.
After a few moments the man stopped moving. Unconscious or dead, Larry didn't know and didn't particularly care. He stood up and cast about for his knife. It was lying in the mud, next to the gun. He saw his knife, but the gun was gone.
Suddenly, fire exploded in his back. He dropped to the ground, crying out in fear and pain. The other man, the one with the cut face, he'd found the gun. Once again pain exploded in him, this time in his chest, just to the right of his heart. He fell back against the ground. Damn his stupidity. He'd totally forgotten about the man. Assumed that he was taken care of. Now he'd been shot. Badly. He could feel the blood flowing from his veins. He was going to die, he knew that much. No one would save him, even if they could. He was going numb, shock he guessed. It suddenly occurred to him that no one was going to pick his knife up out of the mud. The blade would be ruined. This disturbed him more than the thought of dying. He tried to speak, to beg the man to take his knife, to clean it and care for it, but only a gurgling croak would come out.
'I wish I was a genius' he thought sadly. If he'd been a genius he wouldn't have been shot. He wouldn't be lying here dying while his knife got ruined in the mud. For the first time in nearly twenty years, Larry cried.
"The hekura are often found in the hills, or high in trees, often suspended there, but they can also live under rocks or even in the chest of a human. . . . Some are 'hot' and some are naiiki -- meat hungry and cannibalistic. Some are both hot and meat hungry, and these are often the ones sent to devour the souls of enemies."
Cornelius Omphalos hung over me as I followed his directions for making the drug and the heated seeds and white ash combined to form a green powder in my mortar. This lab room allotted me by the University of Texas to complete my chemistry graduate research was merely the latest in a series of sites which had seen the preparations of such strange concoctions and mind-altering brews, going back to the Club des Haschichins we had founded in our undergraduate days based on Moreau's and Gautier's example. Each of us sought in these forays into drug use our own goals; mine being the insights of chemical effects on the brain and its evolution on the material level, while Cornelius' belonged to another plane altogether.
I had known the anthropology student for quite some time, and it was not long after our having met in the reading room of the Life Sciences Library that we organised the underground Club, made up of a small circle of close friends willing to experiment and to gamble, meeting in rented rooms and secluded spots at odd intervals to try an elaborate assortment of concoctions in quasi-religious rituals. One after another, however, the group was wooed away, by lovers or jobs or other aspects of the vulgar world outside the spheres Omphalos and I chose to inhabit. For while I was the scientist dedicated to learning at any price for its own sake, Omphalos sought with similar dedication a higher ideal, dealings with something outside of our own realm of experience, something which perhaps should not have been dealt with and which perhaps God and Nature have mercifully shielded us from by relegating to us such weak senses.
Omphalos had that fearlessness brought on by wonder and that far-reaching yet blind vision held by all mystics and revolutionaries, and a fire burned in the Greek's dark eyes as he no doubt contemplated what I would never have then imagined. For he had seen the ebene, the hallucinogenic snuff now forming before us, used so often by the shamans of the South American Yanomamo; he had watched the shamans as they switched between their own roles and of those of the hekura, spirits called down from the hills and the forests and even the farthest reaches of the universe to dwell in their chests and to work strange deeds. Returning from his fieldwork he carried with him a walking stick made of wood of the ama tree which was soon reduced to ash necessary for the experiment and a tube of the skinned seeds of the hisiomo tree, traded from a Yanomamo looking for the advantages a new shotgun would bestow upon him in this often warlike society and brought through customs with the aid of a few dollars and the kind officials. I wish I could erase that day soon after his return when he showed up at my residence holding the cane and his battered leather bag containing the tube of seeds and told me of his experiences, and of the refusal of the Yanomamo shamans to grant his most urgent wish, that he be inducted into their mysteries and learn to deal with the hekura. Had he paid heed to their warnings he would have realised that his quest could not end happily.
As the Sun shone on the University's cyclopean Tower from the Western sky and unwitting students went about the petty dramas of their lives unsuspecting of that which lies beyond, we hurtled down the back roads of the Texas Hill Country towards our preselected site, oak rising thick on either side of the road thinning out onto juniper-studded limestone hills and growing beside winding rivulets which had been devouring the rock for countless ages, proceeding from sources unknown to unknown destinations eating valleys and hidden grottoes from the white rock. I realise in retrospect that during this journey Omphalos was steeling himself for trials whose appearance he knew waited only for the blast of that snuff. For he had sat among these men and heard their stories and while he had not seen the entities these men culled into their bodies, he had seen them carry out that drama known only to the shaman, he had seen them slip between worlds and watched their actions with spirits. This was what Cornelius had searched for for so long among so many cultures, the doorway to the unknown which had been the quest of the Greek's life, and he was willing to make the sacrifices necessary to secure this prize.
The Sun shone down upon bare limestone patches in the sparse grass as I turned my dirty grey Oldsmobile onto the rocky dirt road winding up to the hilltop clearing along the last leg of our journey in the Westlake hills. We rolled to a stop in the rocky clearing and clambered out of the car, noting briefly the commanding view of the bare hilltop, one among several in the area, fringed lower down with juniper trees giving way to dry creek beds at its base. A flock of grackles hopped about eating things squirming in the sparse grass and watched us with curious yellow eyes as we prepared for our saturnalia, their squawking and cackling filling the afternoon air as the Sun shone upon us just as it has upon so many of the deeds of men, good or ill, standing silent watch over Earth's affairs. I quickly dressed in the flowing priest-like robes we had designed for our Club in those days so long past, in the Western Ceremonial style the group had favoured, but Cornelius had spent his days of late in other climes, and my robes clashed with his South American dress and painted body, looking so much like those grainy pictures of Yanomamo Omphalos had shown me as we discussed the dancing hekura. While I dressed as I felt appropriate, Omphalos dressed as guest of the hekura, for the hekura demand beauty of their hosts, a beauty known to the Yanomamo in the pigments and feathers of the jungle.
The Sun hung not far above the Western horizon when we finally squatted down facing each other, the scientist and the mystic, with Omphalos' old leather bag lying between us. Reverently I opened the bag and removed the snuff tube which the Yanomamo call the mokohiro along with the pouch of ebene and placed some of the snuff into the nose piece of the instrument. Placing the nose piece to Omphalos' nostril, I blew the greenish powder through the pipe first slowly and finally ending with a sharp blast. Omphalos fell back in pain, coughing and hacking, with mucous dripping from his nostril, but quickly regained himself and prepared for a second blast, which was met with a similar reaction. However, Omphalos had the determination of one heading towards a tantalisingly close goal, and he once again regained himself and I reluctantly received a blast of the greenish powder myself. Falling back gasping and coughing, my eyes watering and mucous dipping in long strands from my nose I refused a second blast and lay on the ground awaiting the painful drug's effects.
Slowly recovering from the first pains of the drug, tears flowing from my eyes, I soon heard Omphalos' high clear voice crooning a strange and ancient melody, softly at first but gradually crescendoing to ear-splitting volumes, but always maintaining the beauty and wonder of the song. This was the song of summoning which Omphalos had told me of so often, the calling out to those glowing creatures to come and join the realm of men, to join us in the fields men know. Mucous dripping down his face and chest, dropping in patches and forming green crusts on the white limestone, Omphalos reeled about singing this song as I watched in both amusement and with a twinge of fear, for he had the bearing of a true fanatic for this religion he had never even really known, and he had made the transition into that man whose acquaintance I had made but a few times before high on drugs in those meetings of our Club, who would push his corporal frame past the point where it should have broken.
My eyes still watering and my nose running profusely I lay watching him reel about me and snorting small handfuls of the drug, no longer even bothering with the mokohiro, oblivious to the black winged birds screaming and hopping about in reply to his strange song when, opposite the setting Sun, strange tiny lights began to appear in the Eastern sky. Sitting upright I watched with curiosity as the dancing lights arose from the hills and trees and from high in the encroaching darkness, twirling along their trails and whirling about in the air as they approached our hilltop. As they drew closer panic began to creep over me, for no longer could I deny that they were taking on the shapes so often described to me by Omphalos as we laid out our plans and read the scattering of articles on the ebene available in English, for here were approaching the tiny forms of glowing creatures, tiny men and women, each less than two inches tall, some carrying soul-piercing weapons and wearing palm-frond visors as if in preparation of attack on an enemy. Like tiny ballet dancers they gamboled about, spiraling towards us, as they each danced along their paths to us and congregated around Omphalos, spinning in the air to the time of his song, now reaching a fever pitch. Finally, with Omphalos' gestures of invitation, the hekura, many with weapons in hand, began to march along glowing trails to his feet and enter his body, making the invisible course to his chest. It was then that Omphalos stopped his singing and his face made odd contortions of fear and of pain, and I noticed with the hekura's advances in my direction that both Omphalos and I were screaming.
The police found me running through the woods, blood trailing from dozens of wounds where thorns and branches had torn at my face and hands as I ran blindly long after the effects of my panic had overcome the ebene and I ceased to even remember what I was running from. Fortunately men are quick to make up their own explanations for what they do not understand, so my ravings with what little coherency they had fell upon deaf ears and closed minds. When I finally recovered enough to lead them to the spot in the woods where Omphalos lay, the Greek was near death, and he did not live long after the trip to the hospital. But to this day Omphalos' words when we found him lying in that clearing still haunt me, and as I make even the shortest sortie outdoors I look about and fear what may come dancing unseen along its path to the realms of men, what has been so mercifully cloaked from our feeble senses, for as he lay there all he could say, over and over, was how he could feel them chewing.
--SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-- State of unBeing is copyrighted (c) 1997 by Crux Ansata and Apocalypse Culture Publications, "The Revolution Is Now" Faction. All rights are reserved to cover, format, editorials, and all incidental material. All individual items are copyrighted (c) 1997 by the individual author, unless otherwise stated. This file may be disseminated without restriction for nonprofit purposes so long as it is preserved complete and unmodified. Quotes and ideas not already in the public domain may be freely used so long as due recognition is provided. State of unBeing is available at the following places: CYBERVERSE 512.255.5728 14.4 TEENAGE RiOt 418.833.4213 14.4 NUP: COSMIC_JOKE THAT STUPID PLACE 215.985.0462 14.4 ftp to www.io.com /pub/SoB World Wide Web http://www.io.com/~hagbard/sob.html Submissions may also be sent to Crux Ansata at <CruxAnsata@hotmail.com>. The SoB distribution list may be joined by sending email to the same address. --SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB-SoB--