17 January 2009

2009 - The Year Before We Made Contact

I try to avoid going into too much detail about my personal practice on this blog. On one hand, I prize the freedom of pseudonymity. On the other, I want the ideas to speak for themselves.

However, the goal is to try to alter that for 2009. You've had enough aphorisms (if you haven't, please write and you can have some more); you've had all the snarky commentary on current affairs, tending to the inevitable conclusion "... and that's why we need an organised magico-political current informed by Marxian socio-economics and cutting-edge psycho-memetic theory". What you - and I - need now is practical reports from the field on the application of Chaos Marxism.

That's precisely what you don't get from the works of Small Business Occultism (with some rare exceptions - eg RAW, Cosmic Trigger v 1). You get a lot of theory which sounds excellent, with some practices you can carry out in the privacy of your own private masturbatorium, or with a few close friends/drinking buddies. But where are the reproducible results? Without those, all this psychonautistry is just fapping yourself off. Not that there's anythign wrong with fapping yourself off, but you don't need heavy theory, prayer or sacrifice for that - just a bottle of lubricant and pr0nz of your own personal preference, at maximum.

So, let's pick a few basic CM ideas:
1) Magic, politics, psychology and art have very strong common cultural roots.
2) In the world today, the advanced capitalist countries are increasingly training knowledge workers and service workers rather than industrial workers.
3) The industrial working class still exists, and is bigger than ever - in places like China, where totalitarianism is tolerated by the West because it keeps the cheap consumer goods flowing.
4) The forces that will in the final analysis determine the shape of the future are the working masses on one hand, and the forces of capital and militarism on the other. Any other social group is like driftwood floating on an estuary, pushed by the river and by the sea.
5) Knowledge workers, on one hand, demand more autonomy for themselves and are encouraged to be more creative and free-thinking; and on the other hand, have all "bought into the system" to some extent, because of their own individualisation and relative privilege.
6) The very nature of knowledge workers is to believe that they are the only real people, because they deal with ideas and anyone who doesn't share their cultural universe might as well be Martians. It is this that means that their politics slip towards "political correctness"- speech codes and other gesture politics. Nevertheless, they produce the ideas which smooth out the eternal conflict between capital and labour - making labour productive and docile while enabling capital to appear friendly.
7) Cultural products sell - and memes spread - when they are embody a real underlying social need, fear, worry or desire. Generally in this culture, they are a fusion between on one hand the real facts of what's actually going on in the physical world, and on the other, ideology embodied in the ruling class and clarified by the cultural workers. (ref: Gramsci)
8) Because of the essential isolation, disconnection and tendency towards solipsism of the cultural workers, any magical or political current based on elitism - appealing to one particular tiny subsection of Westernised white-collar workers and cultural technicians - will inevitably degenerate into small group psychosis and be completely useless in the real world. The exception is if it serves the need of either capital-militarism or the working masses.
9) Service workers (and other white-collar proles) don't have the tradition of fusion and collective action of industrial workers because the forces of concentration of capital don't apply. So, subjectively, they're in the same boat of disconnection and isolation as the cultural workers.
10) We can see the very beginnings of what post-capital, post-authority society will look like in online communities. Yes, that includes troll-paradises like 4chan et al. You didn't think the new world would be a utopia, did you? Nevertheless, free exchange of memes and cultural capital suggest that there is some way for humans to interact sustainably without needing the cash nexus or wage labour.

Conclusions from all of the above:

- In the advanced Western nations, magical/political work will only have positive, world-changing conditions if it encourages "group thoughtforms / egregores / collective consciousness" to grow among cultural workers and service workers (and industrial workers of course, although their relative weight within national borders is decreasing).
- The goal of Chaos Marxism in 2009 is to create non-commercial and non-clique scenes of culture, thought, socialization and collective action. Commercialism (or anyone making money from the scene) just leads back into the logic of capital. Cliquism we already have far, far too much of, and is just more sophisticated masturbation.
- These will have to be based on memes which combine the "good sense" of actual real people's actual real experience of the actual Real World of Horrible Jobs, with a new "common sense" of non-commercial collective action in the streets, in the workplaces, in the bars, in the pages of mass-market newspapers, in the corridors of power, in the astral realms.
- Political, magical-spiritual, and cultural-artistic spheres must be separate and autonomous, yet interdependent and synergetic. Failure to do so will mean politics becoming gestural nonsense or culture becoming boring Stalinist-style agitprop.
- Any "confessionalism" or "dogma" - i.e. insisting that any participant in the scene must subscribe in advance to any variation on Marxism, thelema, anarchism, fandom of techno music etc. - will lead straight back into cliquism and must be killed with fire. Willingness to embark on common action and community solidarity must be the only requirement.
- There are several different models of leadership which may evolve in such a scene. The main requirements are (a) permeable boundaries between "the leadership" and the group; (b) progressive eliminiation of the distinction between "leader" and "activist"; (c) leadership to be based on actual contribution and leadership skills, rather than force, fraud or popularity contest.
- In the long term, only a real world-wide current of collective action and non-commercial culture, which unites all cultural, industrial and service workers, will change the world on the global scale.

===

I'm organizing a small political party and an electronic music scene in my home town. At the same time, I'm continuing the Great Work to dissolve the ego which kept me alive for just long enough while making sure I wasn't capable of really uniting myself with any current. What are you doing? No, seriously, I want to know.

3 comments:

  1. i totally agree on your thesis of workers globally uniting with the sence of the collective consiousnes , if i got it right . I have almost the same thoughts some time now , cause i can see what kind of direction a "dry" for the need of spirituality "ideology " can take . I am a little bit skeptik cause i am not sure about the way "illumination" can come to a mass group of working people , since until now most of the "esoteric traditions" were in a - guru to student , member of fraternity or buy my feel good book- , style.
    Anyway i am enjoying reading you cause of another reason . I was an active member of the rave scene at the early 90s here in Greece , and a child from a communist family . ( my parents got married during their exile years in the island of Samothrace in the 70s dictatorship) . I was always a little bit confused of being in between rave lifestylle and communist "tradition" , until of course i came across the writtings of RAW and then Crowley and then everyone else . It gives me a sence of synchronicity the fact that the island of Samothrace plays some part in the esoteric traditions of the Golden Dawn because of the ancient Kavirian mysteries.
    I am in stuck for now in what direction i must think and act , since theory with out doing something seems to have zero impact on reality . I hope you gonna give us some more thought food for the future . I would like also more information about what ever project you are up to.Sorry for my bad English.
    Greetings.Peace..
    Nickolas . Athens .


    p.s . YES we must organise our protests , activism
    and theoritical work out of the "money grid"

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  2. Mass illumination, if my hunch is correct, will come via mass practice. You are what you do; if masses of people do something new, they will think and perceive something new.

    Very good to hear from you. We all know of course about the recent uproar in Athens, but how much of that is actually getting through to working people, and how much is just the teenage anarchists having a good time?

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  3. This question was also a subject of discussion among the peolple who participated in the DEcember events , here in Greece . Let me explain some more . I was in the streets seeing 12-20 years old school kids rioting with absolute abscence of fear in front of the riot squads . I dont think from my expierience that all that had to do only with anarchists . Actually the riots were al over Greece , not only Athens . So i dont think that somehow Greece is the anarchists paradise . Actually i saw kids with expensive skate clothing throwing oranges and stones with their girlfriends from behind saying "watch out we must phone your mother after".........i think it was more of an outburst of people after all this years of pure corpo-fascism virtual reality , breaking their "Maya"...Yes they were anarchists , but their were also students , young people , immigrants , and of course the usual amount of provocators from agencies , the secret service and paramilitary far right , mainly breaking and burning small shops , for the usual news at 11 hysteria .
    The most scary thing for me was the total absence of the union workers , that for now proves to me the total corruption of the union structures . Actually i think we can say that 12-20 years old kids were taking with their actions the "sins" for an entire society living in virtual time . The workers mainly affected by the neoliberal dogma and the comming crisis , were watching their own kids in live tv ...........how thinks will be in the next spiral of time ?.........8-14 years old kids rioting about having no future with their parents watching the killings on national broadcast?....
    ...i am not sure but the whole thing starts to remind me some surrealistic P.H. Dick novel script....
    With the biggest part of the society understanding what is going on but not wanting to do anything , just living in denial.
    Denial is from my perspective the most up to date word to describe the most "common thing" in Greek society's air .To close with something "good" i think that there is this possibility that this youngsters will be the in a few years in good possition to brake further more this corpo-maya and change their reality and sosiety . They are the same children that everybody was saying that they only care about their i-Pod ...i think thats a very good start.

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