Archive for December, 2013

Pagan Anarchism

on December 21, 2013 in Emerging Visions | Comments Off on Pagan Anarchism

In between my forays into the remoter reaches of prehistory, I like to keep an eye on current events for signs of significant transitions. It seems that one such transition is upon us now, as indicated by the fact that “economic populism” — or “economic justice” or “social justice” — has become the hot new buzzword of the moment.

Four years ago, the issue of inequality was not even on the table. Two years ago, it was being pushed only by those noisy folk down at Occupy Wall Street. But now it is something that even the elites and makers of opinion are having to recognize.

That’s not just a switch in the zeitgeist. It’s a sign that we’re at a crucial turning point in the cycle of visions where the horizontalism vision starts to attract mainstream attention.

If the pattern that I worked out last spring holds true, we’re about to see horizontalism — like holism in the late 60s and early 70s — become the focus of a tug of war between established interests looking for practical solutions and the wild romantics and radicals who have been nurturing the vision for the last several decades.

The ultimate outcome of that struggle will be a split between a “safe” version of the vision on one hand and a more dangerous and mystical version on the other. However, that split will remain latent for the next dozen years or so. In the meantime, I see nothing wrong with getting as many tangible benefits as we can out of this window of opportunity when the elite are running scared and willing to make concessions.

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Suppose as a thought-experiment that you are the first true human, living some 400,000 years ago. You have been awakened by a stroke of higher knowledge to a sense of your own nature and potential — but you have no one with whom to share that awareness.

The near-humans around you are by no means dumb. Their brains are probably larger than ours today. They have prodigious memories and an encyclopedic knowledge of the local plants and animals and inorganic materials. But they are very literal minded. They take their guidance from a collective belief system that tells them what to think and how to act, and they are incapable of seeing beyond that.

What would you do? How would you go about breaking them out of their limitations and raising them to a higher level of awareness? You are, after all, just one person, with a narrow lifespan and little chance of finding disciples among your contemporaries.

Your only option is to institute changes in the belief system itself that will live on after you.

Those changes will have to fulfill three criteria. They must have an immediate social value that will cause them to be accepted and maintained even by the unenlightened. They must include a subversive element that will chip away at rigid assumptions and speak directly to those who are prepared to break free of their cultural conditioning. And they must contain coded information that will provide those few with clues on how to further the great project of humanization.

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