Category Archives: religion

>The world itself

>

I dont regard my state of mind as some pessimistic view of the world.
I regard it as the world itself.
Evolution cannot avoid bringing intelligent life ultimately to an awareness of one thing above all else and that one thing is futility.

Cormac McCarthy’s play (which some people believe reads more like a novel) has been called “a poem in celebration of death”. I have yet to put my hands on anything by McCarthy that is nothing short of amazing, and The Sunset Limited is no exception.

However, I don’t find this play to be such an awesome literary experience as compared to Blood Meridian, for example, and that’s quite obvious since this is a play. Here is no Cormac painting pictures in your mind, here is none of that superb prose you’re used to, but here are these two men talking about the meaning and the meaninglessness of life, death, God, faith and other fairly intangible ideas, and that’s about it.

I didn’t know about this play until I found out about the movie adaptation. Starring Tommy Lee Jones as White and Samuel L. Jackson as Black, this is one tough battle for the human soul. In a way, these two dudes represent two extremes, and also, to be honest, two stereotypes. At least that’s what I make out of it. The black man being an ex-prisoner, a murderer, who found God in jail, and the white man being a professor and an atheist. That’s pretty stereotype, isn’t it? So, at times, the dialogue gets pathetic.

Black relies entirely on his faith in the Bible and White believes in Culture. Or believed, rather. Because apparently, White just tried to commit suicide. He has lost his faith in Culture and the human condition: “The things I believe in don’t exist anymore”. White has awoken to the real world around him, and the real world is evil. Interpreting the play in this way, I find it superb. It’s pretty much what I’ve been trying to say all along. Thus, I can cope with some parts being rather simple-minded.

I yearn for the darkness. I pray for death. Real death. If I thought that in death I would meet the people I’ve known in life I don’t know what I’d do. That would be the ultimate horror. The ultimate despair. If I had to meet my mother again and start all of that all over, only this time without the prospect of death to look forward to?
Well. That would be the final nightmare. Kafka on wheels.

This is Cormac McCarthy without the surrounding mythos and tension and atmosphere. Also, he has left the territories he knows best: man in nature, the nature of the beast, the nature of man. A lot of true critics say he’s not working as well without the atmosphere and stuff, but I say fuck that shit… Sure, I’m a fanboy, and highly biased, but I think my mind is clear enough to say that this is some pretty good dope for the soul. The subjects he’s dealing with are pretty much the same as always, although in a more accepted way, so to speak. I think this dialogue speaks to more people than Blood Meridian, for example. The Sunset Limited is straight to the point, while Blood Meridian is almost occult and obscure in perspective. 

As for the movie VS the play, I’d say I enjoyed the movie more (despite the bad editing). Maybe because I’m not used to reading plays and all, and I really like the acting of Tommy Lee Jones and Samuel Jackson.
As always, you decide.

Show me a religion that prepares one for death. For nothingness.
There’s a church I might enter.

>A need to discover the dark

>

The world of the occult and the obscure, the hidden and the haunted… It might just be a load of bollocks to most, but to me it represents the inner cravings of the human psyche. A need to discover the dark, as Jon Nödtveidt once put it.

The human mind and the core of humanity is reflected in the darkness of man, and this is what’s of interest to those who seek beyond the everyday boredom of life. If you fear the unknown, you probably prefer television before the secrets of the black arts…
Or simply put: Fantasy is more interesting than reality.

But ok, most of the writings on the left hand path are a load of bollocks. It’s pretty much new age crap. Lame as fuck. At least that’s my opinion having read or skimmed through quite a bunch of books on the subject.

However, bollocks or not, some of the texts below makes my mind wander when all hope is gone – and that’s all I crave. It’s like reading a good book of fiction. That’s how I look at most things I read. Reading academic stuff like an academic takes the fun out of reading. Most importantly, the mind must awaken and the soul must be touched, or else I could do with whatever shallow shit that’s on TV at any given moment.

So here are a bunch of basic works that I’ve found interesting in many ways. If you’re into the imagery and lyrics of the occult metal scene, you should definitely take notice.

The Egyptian Book of the Dead
The Psychedelic Experience – A manual based on the Tibetan Book of the Dead by Timothy Leary
An essay about the Tibetan Book of the Dead by Annie Shapiro
The Kaballah Unveiled
Dhammapada
The Art and Meaning of Magic (contains the Iron Maiden quotes “I Am He! The Bornless One!”)
The Doors of Perception by Aldous Huxley
The Magical Revival
The Lives of the Necromancers

For deeper dwelling I highly recommend The Doctrine of Awakening by Julius Evola. It just might deserve its own article… We’ll see about that.

Related posts about religion:
The meaning of the curse
Belief and Bloodshed: The Religion of Genocide
The Louse of Holy Name
Jehova, Christ, Lucifer and Satan
Religion and its influence on society
DSO – Obedience to the point of death
Prayin’ hard – Jim Goad
Show me a man who is good
Nietzsche — Revalutation of all values!

>The meaning of the curse

>

Cut off from the world, having broken with all his friends, he read me – with an almost indespensible Russian accent, given the situation – the beginning of the Book of Books. Reaching the moment where Adam gets himself expelled from paradise, he fell silent, dreamily staring into the distance while I thought to myself, more or less distinctly, that after millenia of false hopes, humanity, furious at having cheated, would finally receive the meaning of the curse and thereby make itself worthy of its first ancestor.

A flame traverses the blood.
To go over to the other side, circumventing death…

To withdraw indefinitely into oneself, like God after the six days.
Let us imitate Him, on this point at least.

Between Genesis and Apocalypse imposture reigns.
It is important to know this, for once assimilated, such dizzying evidence renders all formulas for wisdom superfluous.

Since our defects are not surface accidents but the very basis of our nature,
we cannot correct them without deforming that nature, without perverting it still more.

If the Hour of Disappointment were to sound for everyone at the same time,
we should see an entirely new version, either of paradise or of hell.

No fate to which I could have adjusted myself.
I was made to exist before my birth and after my death, not during my very existence.

I anticipated witnessing in my lifetime the disappearance of our species.
But the gods have been against me.

>Genocide Awareness Pt.2

>

We all know about ”the six million Jews” figure, we hear about that everyday (you hardly have to be a news junkie to catch that). The Holocaust certainly was unique. But so was the extermination of possibly as many as sixty million Africans during the African slave trade, and so was the near-total extermination of one hundred million American Indians. You don’t hear about that quite as often.
As for American Indians, this was about the total extermination of entire cultural, social, religious, and ethnic groups. When speaking of the Holocaust, we make fine distinctions among the different populations of Europe, but lump ”Africans” and ”Indians” into one single category. Maybe this is one reason why these genocides – which are far worse in terms of sheer numbers of people killed – are being ignored? And of course, the uniqueness of the Jewish people (the People’s Front of Judea!), Jews as the chosen people, makes the Holocaust so much more special and important. This is where the Holocaust religion comes marching in.

If you’re interested in the boundary between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism, Defamation ought to be a movie worthy of your interest. It is directed by Yoav Shamir, an Israeli Jew, who also made the amazing Checkpoint documentary.
Shamir is interested in non-violence based on game theory. In game theory [quoted from an IMDB review], “the ‘Prisoner’s Dilemma’ states that the only concern of each individual player (or ‘prisoner’) is to try to maximize his own advantage, without any concern for the well-being of the other players. Both players will be tempted to harm the other player even though they would both ultimately benefit more by cooperation”.
This pretty much describes the situation in Israel.

Related posts:
Genocide Awareness Pt.1
An introductory video (featuring additional links to previous posts of interest)
The Israel Lobby — What it is
The Cash
The Israel Lobby 2009
The Israel Lobby 2009 — Part Two

Watch the introduction of Defamation here.

Watch the introduction of Checkpoint here.

>The Clash of Civilizations — Part Three

>

In the wake of the Overshoot and overpopulation posts, it’s time to return to Samuel P. Huntington and The Clash of Civilizations and check out what he said and what is happening in the world.
Read Part 1 here and Part 2 here.
Wow, I wrote that two years ago… Time flies like a m‑f.

A brief summary of Part 1 and 2:

The conflicts of the post-Cold War era will arise not from ideological or economic differences but from cultural divisions (old battles rooted in old cultures). Huntington fears that the fading West will clash with the challenging Islam, but – as I see it – he fails to see the difference between Islam and radical Islam, and thus fears the conflict between Islam and the West (Christianity) for the very wrong reasons, since radical Islam does not represent the Islamic civilization.

During the 1970s and 1980s over thirty countries shifted from authoritarian to democratic political systems. In these countries, Christian and Western influences were very strong. Along with the collapse of the Soviet Union, the United States smelled victory and belief in that a global democratic revolution was underway, and that the Western form of political democracy would prevail, and that the United States thus could expand their trade and power. America needs that in the quest for oil. However, we all know that Western democracy differs quite a lot from, say, Islamic democracy. Read more about that here.
Hence almost all non-Western civilizations are resistant to this pressure from the West. Japan, for example, distanced itself from American human rights policies: ”We will not let ‘abstract notions of human rights’ affect our relations with China.”
The growing economic strenght of Asian countries makes them immune to this Western pressure.  Richard Nixon observed in 1994: ”Today China’s economic power makes U.S. lectures about human rights imprudent. Within a decade it will make them irrelevant. Within two decades it will make them laughable.” Just look at the China VS USA conflict going on at this very minute…
If democracy will come to these countries it is because the increasingly strong bourgeoisies and middle classes want it to come – not because the United States say so in the name of ”human rights imperialism”. It is clear that the United States’ democratic processes in non-Western societies produce governments who are unfriendly to the West, and the world is now as Arab, Asian, and African, as it is Western.

 If demography is destiny, population movements are the motor of history. […] In some instances these movements were relatively peaceful, in others quite violent. Nineteenthcentury Europeans were, however, the master race at demographic invasion. Between 1821 and 1924, approximately 55 million Europeans migrated overseas, 34 million of them to the United States. Westerners conquered and at times obliterated people, explored and settled less densely populated lands. The export of people was perhaps the single most important dimension of the rise of the West between the sixteenth and twentieth centuries.

 

However, migration is different today. Decolonization and the establishment of new states encouraged (or forced) people to move. Also, technological development and modernization, such as transportation improvements, has made migration cheaper, quicker and easier, as has improvements in communication. Back then, immigrants and refugees moved within non-Western societies. This balance has changed overtime, and now most of ”the new immigrants” come from non-Western societies and move into Western societies. This, of course, stirs up feelings of phobia, worries about national identity and thoughts of demographic decline. The European concern about immigration seems to be concern especially about Muslim immigration. Huntington writes: ”In Western Europe, anti-Semitism directed against Arabs has largely replaced anti-Semitism directed against Jews.”
Again, people concerned about Muslims cannot seem to fathom the enormous gap that exists between Islam and radical Islam. Read my article Juan Cole: Engaging the Muslim world for a brief discussion about this problem.

However, population growth rates in North African and Middle Eastern societies have already peaked and began to decline, so the threat to Europe of ”Islamization” is likely to decline as well. Instead, Huntington predicted ”Africanization” in Europe, lest not AIDS or other plagues wipes out the Africans first… People are dying off like flies and have been doing so since 1985, pretty much without the West lifting a finger.

Speaking of Africa, Nigeria is experiencing the clash of civilizations right now. The country is divided into the Islamic north and the Christian south, and almost nowhere else in the world does the rivalry between religions result in bloody conflict quite so often. Nigeria has a population of about 150 million, and its 400 ethnic groups speak more than 400 languages. Half the population prays to Allah, the other half prays to God. The clashes have claimed at least 10,000 dead.
When the would-be Detroit bomber, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, also known as the underwear bomber (!), was identified as a Nigerian Muslim, violence erupted again. Christians wrote on various Internet forums about the Hausa-Fulani, the country’s largest Muslim ethnic group to which Abdulmutallab traces his origins: ”They are not part of us. They are bastards, mixed with Arab blood to terrorize the world. They do not like education. They hate civilization and I wonder why they still exist as part of the human race.”
Clashes in the city of Bauchi last Monday, instigated by an Islamic sect, claimed 38 lives.

Related posts:
Belief and bloodshed: The Religion of Genocide
Islam and conflicting ideas
Juan Cole: Engaging the Muslim world
The Clash of Civilizations — Part One
The Clash of Civilizations — Part Two
Overshoot and overpopulation

>Nietzsche: Ny moral

>

 ‘I haven hört, att det var sagt de gamle: Du skall ej röva, du skall ej dräpa. Men jag frågor eder: var på jorden fanns det någonsin värre rövare och dråpare än just sådana heliga ord?’ Dessa Nietzsches ord har i kälkborgarens ögon en djupt omoralisk klang, fastän de blott säga, att den, som vigt sitt liv åt ett stort och ädelt mål, ej får låta sin handlingskraft söndersmulas av de tusen hänsyn, som trycka den kortsynta och egoistiska vardagsmänniskan ned i gruset. En sådan idealism är allt annat än immoralisk; den ställer tvärtom betydligt högre och hårdare krav på sin man än de kristna husdjursdygderna, och den smutsas aldrig ner av tankar på tack och vedergällning.
Bengt Lidforss, 16 december 1902

>Eric Arthur Blair

>

 One must choose between God and Man, and all “radicals” and “progressives”, from the mildest liberal to the most extreme anarchist, have in effect chosen Man.

Eric Arthur Blair, British writer, better known as George Orwell, died at age 46. He was one of the best when it comes to explaining the brutal consequences we face when turning away from the truth.
If you still haven’t read Nineteen Eighty-Four — published in 1949 — now is the time.

WAR IS PEACE
FREEDOM IS SLAVERY
IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH

>The louse of holy name

>

 How much longer will you keep up the worm-eaten cult of this god, who is insensible to your prayers and to the generous sacrifices that you offer him as an expiatory holocaust? Can you not see that this horrible manitou is not grateful for the bowls of blood and brains which you lay on his altars, piously decorated with garlands of flowers. He is not grateful… for earthquakes and tempests have been raging uninterruptedly since the beginning of all things. And nonetheless (this is a spectacle worthy of observation), the more indifferent he is, the more you admire him. It is clear that you are wary of his attributes, which he hides; and your reasoning is based on the consideration that a divinity of such extreme power can only show disdain for the faithful who obey the commandments of his religion. For that reason different gods exist in each country: here, the crocodile, there, the prostitute.

But when it comes to the louse, of holy name, the nations of the earth, one and all kissing the chains of their slavery, kneel together in the august sanctuary before the pedestal of this shapeless and bloodthirsty idol. Any people that did not obey its own grovelling instincts and made as if to rebel, would sooner or later disappear from the face of the earth like an autumn leaf, destroyed by the vengeance of the inexorable god.
Lautrémont, Maldoror 1868–1869
[more here]

>Jehova, Christ, Lucifer and Satan

>

Robert DeGrimston was the founder of the very odd religious group The Process Church of The Final Judgement, whose main thing was that they worshipped both Christ and Satan. Their belief was that in the end times, Satan would join with Christ and together they were to judge humanity; Christ to judge and Satan to execute judgement.
The Process believed there are three God-patterns that exist within all of us.
Wikipedia:

  • Jehovah, the wrathful God of vengeance and retribution, demands discipline, courage and ruthlessness, and a single-minded dedication to duty, purity and self-denial.
  • Lucifer, the Light Bearer, urges us to enjoy life to the full, to value success in human terms, to be gentle and kind and loving, and to live in peace and harmony with one another. Man’s apparent inability to value success without descending into greed, jealousy and an exaggerated sense of his own importance, has brought the God Lucifer into disrepute. He has become mistakenly identified with Satan.
  • Satan, the receiver of transcendent souls and corrupted bodies, instills in us two directly opposite qualities; at one end an urge to rise above all human and physical needs and appetites, to become all soul and no body, all spirit and no mind, and at the other end a desire to sink beneath all human codes of behavior, and to wallow in a morass of violence, lunacy and excessive physical indulgence. But it is the lower end of Satan’s nature that men fear, which is why Satan, by whatever name, is seen as the Adversary.

The X Spot has a great article about these people here. The group existed between 1963 and 1974, and when Robert was removed from the top position as Teacher the group quickly renounced most of his ideas. They changed the name to Founding Faith of the Millennium, and within short time their focus had changed completely. Now they exist as Best Friends Animal Society, which is one of America’s best known animal welfare rescue groups (!).  
However, I’m not at all interested in their old religious belief system. What I like is their old newsletters and prose, especially the book Satan on War. I enjoy the words immensely. Like this:

Know that life is worthless unless it is lived in the very teeth of death, that peace is nothing except as a fleeting moment in the midst of WAR, that love is empty save as a transitory oasis in a world of violent hatred, that to create is only meaningful in order to destroy.

>Belief and Bloodshed: The Religion of Genocide

>

First and last illustrations in this article are stolen from Babalon Graphics.
Go there for more relevant art.

My belief in humanity and God was shattered many years ago. The belief in humanity and God to do good, that is. But ignorance, injustice, hypocrisy and plain evil are always present, and thus form the basis of the ultimate truth of mankind.
There’s no doubt in my mind that humanity would be better off dead, and it seems to me quite strange how one could see it any other way. What signs are there that tell of a brighter future? Signs of dystopia are present wherever there are humans.
It should be obvious. The history of mankind is sealed with blood. Man was put on earth to fight, wage war and destroy. That’s what history tells us, and why would this ever change? Mankind is not good enough. Never will be. Our future breed is the last, to quote a brilliant Neurosis song (read the lyrics here), and rightfully so.

The shrouded reason, the bleeding answer
The human plague in womb
Bring clouds of war
Let us rest
Our future breed is the last

Violence and religion have been closely related since the dawn of civilization. While institutionalized religions have used violence against both their disciples and their real (or imagined) opponents, there is also this thing with religion as a provider of spiritual and material comfort to its victims of political/social violence. It works both ways; religious faith can both motivate aggression as well as constrain it. Religion helps to normalize genocide by providing myths of ultimate redemption, or by saying that it’s ok to annihilate your neighbour… In short, religion is used to legitimize and motivate mass murder.

Christian churches were clearly involved on many levels in preparing the theological, moral, political and mythical basis for genocide in this century. The Institute and Eradication of Jewish Influence on German Religious Life, established in 1939, greatly contributed to spread the idea of Aryan-Christianity by ”proving” that Jesus was racially an Aryan who fought to destroy the Jews. Such German Christians defined themselves both as a chosen people and as a victimized people, and they were socially and academically respected. Even though there were supporters as well as opposers to Nazism among the church leaders, what most of them had in common was the dislike of Jewish presence in Germany. Instead of discussing the moral of what was going on, they provided the perpetrators of the atrocities with religious comfort. They provided a cozy home where the killers could find peace and support, resulting in moral numbness.


We all know about the traditional Jewish concept of Jews as the Chosen People, the Jewish exclusivity and the Holocaust with a capital H. It’s pretty ironic then that the Nazis adopted this concept, them being the racial superiors, the Chosen Ones, and that the Jewish victims, and those who helped rescue them, went for the Christian concept of universalism: all people are equal – especially the weak (!).
Nowadays universalism is rarely to be seen as the racist Zionist movement continues its relentless massacre. The Zionist movement insists on the uniqueness of the Holocaust and is consequently refusing to consider any other case of mass murder as comparable. For example, Zionists do not look upon Armenians as fellow victims of genocide. For many Jews the Holocaust was directly related to Christian antisemitism. Armenians are Christians. Hence, no support from the Zionists. Also, the state of Israel needs to maintain good relations with Turkey, which has never even acknowledged the Armenian genocide, not even expressing regret for it. Politics and religion, not a very good mix.

Speaking of the Holocaust, Palestine radical author Hayim Israel Tsimrman puts the blame for the Holocaust on the younger generation of pious Jews in the 1930s who rejected tradition and betrayed their task of carrying Judaism forward. Their abandonment of religion along with their failure to return to the Land of Israel made it even worse. In his book Tamim Pa’alo, written shortly after the war, he argues that this is the answer to the question ”Why did God do this to this nation?”.
Radical, indeed.

The genocide in Rwanda can be traced back to the impact of the Catholic church on the population. The Belgian and French colonialism — for its own purposes — separated the inhabitants into the ethnic groups of Tutsi and Hutu. The church took part in this process and shifted its support from one group to another according to whoever was in power. This eventually led to the phenomenon of priests taking an active part in decieving the Tutsi population, calling them to seek shelter in the churches, which then became sites of mass murder. Here was the true face of the church, who claimed to bring Western civilization and Western morality to non-European and non-Christian peoples. The Vatican still denies any role in this genocide, and many of those clergy men who were involved are still active in Rwanda.


Back in the day of the mighty Inquisition, one was able to escape getting killed simply by converting to Christianity, thus losing one’s true identity, risking social exclusion and most importantly facing divine punishment. The horror!
Modern genocide tend to outrule this option, since religion tends to be related to race. The most extreme example might be how Serbian religious nationalists claim that Slavic Muslims suffer from a defective gene and therefore must be cleansed by murder or expulsion, since they cannot be transformed even by conversion.

Genocide – savagery, limitless brutality and cruelty.
Spirituality — love, compassion and humanness.
They walk together, hand in hand.

Article inspired by the book In God’s Name (2001).