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Why I Write
What Does It All Mean?

Rembrandt, Aristotle Contemplating a Bust of Homer

2,152 words

I suspect that the path which led me to work with Counter-Currents is somewhat different from that of many of the other people who contribute to it. I did not naturally gravitate toward the Right at an early age, as did many of those I know who are active in it. I grew up in suburban New York, and although there were certainly experiences I had there that were to shape my later worldview, I was not conscious of them as such at the time. Living in a relatively sheltered environment, there were no traumatic encounters with crime or violence that made me decide that I had to join the fight, which seems to be what drives many people to the Right.

I had little in the way of political consciousness as a kid — into my 20s, I was quite apolitical, and all I really had was the Default Liberal Position that most people in urban and suburban New York have, since that’s all I was ever exposed to — Republicans were basically the same as cartoon Nazis, absolute evil, and the Left was the side which was guiding us towards a glorious, Star Trek-like future, and that was basically it. Not that I unquestioningly believed everything that Democrats and liberals said, but more or less that’s how I saw things.

And yet as I got older, there was something tugging at the back of my mind that didn’t sit right with all of this. All I had in the beginning was the sense that there was something deeply wrong with the world around me, even though I couldn’t quite put my finger on what it was. In my later teenage years, I finally decided, as many people that age do, that the problem was that I didn’t know what the “Meaning of Life” is.

Fortunately, with the help of a couple of helpful teachers who gave me good advice outside of class, I soon discovered that there was a whole world of writers, thinkers, and artists who had had the same sense of something wrong as me, and who had worked on this problem long before I even realized there was a problem. Soon, dead men like Dostoevsky, Beethoven, and Nietzsche, and a few living ones like Kubrick, were as important to me as my family and friends. I would not say that, even today, I could tell you precisely what the Meaning of Life is, but investigating such figures over the past thirty years has certainly helped me to discover a meaning to my life.

This discovery, however, had an interesting effect on me: I quickly realized that the sort of ideals that the people I was studying upheld were the exact opposite of those of the world that I knew around me. There was little pursuit of higher meaning, and little regret over its absence, to be found. Indeed, the pursuit of money seemed to be the main driving force behind most of what I saw, both in the real world and in the so-called “culture” of the mass entertainment industry. The fact that these men had recognized the same problems as I did strengthened my confidence that I was on to something important – and yet it was also quite evident that the world had gotten progressively worse since their times, in many respects.

Before long, I headed off to my undergraduate studies at the University of Michigan, confident that I would find myself in the company of others who were as dedicated to figuring out The Meaning of Life as I was. And I did find a few, but I was disheartened to find that most people there only saw being at a university as a stepping stone to some career to make a lot of money, or to eventually “save the world” (which often meant making other places in the world as much like America as possible). Even worse were those who told me that the people I admired were not, in fact, guardians of some higher truth, but were actually evil men whose real purpose was to uphold a system that oppresses everyone else in the world who isn’t a “straight white man,” and that the thing we really should be doing is studying texts written by everybody except straight white men. Even worse than those were the ones who held that there was no such thing as meaning at all, and that the back of a cereal box or the lamentations of a Third World refugee were just as meaningful as a Shakespeare play. Our ancestors sought a heroic vision, and to become the embodiment of the gods that they venerated; the world that we were expected to integrate ourselves into is a world of cubicles, solitary and vacuous entertainments, shopping malls, and certainly no god or titans – in other worlds, a world in which we are all forced into a tiny, prefabricated box. Anyone who aspires to the greatness of the past is condemned as a stubborn reactionary, a lunatic, or worse.

At first, I didn’t really know what to make of all this. But it didn’t take me long to figure out that the people who were assaulting the things I cared about weren’t interested in the Meaning of Life. Rather, they were misusing the tools of knowledge and culture to try to pursue some nihilistic or resentful political agenda of their own. I stuck it out until I got my degree, but I quickly learned that I had to figure out how to distinguish between what was useful and what I should discard in what I was being fed. But I kept reading, and listening, and watching, not just to what I needed for classes but on my own as well, and before long, something resembling a coherent worldview began to take shape.

In the years that followed, in a process that continued long after I finished with school, I came to realize that there is indeed a meaning to things. This meaning is something that is transmitted to us by our great predecessors in culture, knowledge, and achievement — and which is specific to the people who share in the blood of that culture, both figuratively and literally. This isn’t to say that we can’t learn from the fruits of others’ cultures — I’ve certainly benefited from some of the products of Indian, Persian, and Japanese civilization (and the interesting thing is that the cultures of those civilizations likewise affirm many of the same values and attitudes that so-called “Rightists” in the West advocate) — but, inescapably, there is a culture that is a part of us, and us of it, by birthright. So what I was responding to in the works of the great thinkers of my people wasn’t just a personal one; it was also an inner recognition that my heart was in some way the same as the hearts which had beaten within the breasts of those such as Wagner, Goethe, and Blake.

And I also came to understand that this tradition of which we are a part isn’t limited to art and literature, but is also embodied in our religions, our values, and our political systems. A truly harmonious worldview, as was understood in the age before everything was “deconstructed” and extreme specialization in one area of knowledge became the norm, has to take all of these elements into account, and they have to be consistent with one another. Indeed, each is meaningless independent of the others. Otherwise, we are cutting ourselves off from the wellspring that sustained our ancestors for countless generations, and casting ourselves adrift in a current whose direction will be being decided by people and forces with nothing but their own interests at heart (or what is commonly, and mistakenly, called “freedom” in today’s parlance).

Eventually, after I imbibed these truths, I realized that simply appreciating the works of the past wasn’t enough. I also needed to represent and carry on this legacy myself. But in order to do that, I needed to seek out those who felt the same need that I did, and who were pursuing similar aims. This should go without saying, but in our age, it’s not as easy to do as it was in previous eras. The very essence of our civilization itself is under attack from every conceivable angle, I now understood, and the legions of the brainwashed were all around us, and unless there were people willing to do what was necessary to defend and perpetuate the great conversation begun by our forefathers, very soon the things that I loved about my civilization might be relegated to seldom-visited museums, or, worse yet, might not exist at all.

So I began to look around, and it didn’t take me long to realize that the Right was, for the most part, the only place where these same issues were being meaningfully discussed and acted upon. And by the Right I certainly don’t mean conservatism — I’ve never regarded myself as merely a conservative — but rather the “radical” Right; not necessarily radical in the sense of being extreme, but of being willing to question the very foundations upon which our civilization as it is currently constituted is resting.

I began exploring this world, reading its literature, and talking to others who were already in it, and eventually I began my work as a publisher in this area. I knew that in order to counteract one intellectual vision of the world — the vision of neoliberalism, globalization, and multiculturalism — we need another intellectual vision of our own, and using my talents in this field would be a way to aid this effort.

When Counter-Currents first appeared in 2010, it was quite apparent from the beginning that it was the best in the burgeoning field of blogs and sites dedicated to the True Right, and that status has never changed. Counter-Currents has always been more than just a political site. Greg, being a man of wide learning and a variety of interests himself, has always sought to cover all the aspects of the struggle we are facing: politics, music, film, philosophy, religion, history, and so on. In that sense, Counter-Currents seeks to stand alongside the intellectual giants of our tradition, and hopefully offer grist for the mills of the future giants of our people. There’s simply no way to achieve our goals without addressing all of the aspects of the problems we face, and the range of subjects that Counter-Currents has covered in its more than seven years is staggering. One never knows what surprises might be in store when one brings the site up each day. So it has always been my pleasure to contribute to Counter-Currents as best I could — for several years as a writer, and nowadays as an editor as well — since Counter-Currents “gets it” as no other group does. And I think this helps it to be an enormously attractive tool for bringing new people into our circles as well as a vital resource for those who have been here for a long time, by casting such a wide net. I certainly wish I had had access to something like Counter-Currents in my pre-Internet youth. It probably would have expedited the process of getting me to where I needed to be, intellectually speaking.

Most crucially, even if we understand what needs to be done politically, our actions will still be meaningless unless we get our souls back. And to get a soul, one has to have some sense of the Meaning of Life that I myself have been seeking all these years. We have to understand what it is that we are fighting for, and even more importantly how we fit into it, for us to be worthy representatives of the bounty that we have been handed as the heirs of a particular tradition — one could well argue the most important tradition that has ever existed in this world. And to do that, we have to learn from those who came before us and carry on our own work in their spirit. The struggle is both an outer and an inward one — and fortunately, Counter-Currents seeks to equip us for both sides of it. It is also the only such site that does more than just criticize and reject the world we find ourselves in. It offers a positive vision for us to aspire towards and the world that might take shape under our guidance; a world in which our descendants will drink from the same wellsprings that our ancestors did.

Those of you who make Counter-Currents possible by contributing your hard-earned cash earn our great respect and gratitude. Thank you. But even more importantly, by doing so you show that you have the discriminating taste to recognize that there is more to saving our people and their culture than mere slogans and negativity.

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Related

7 Comments

  1. marthary
    Posted November 12, 2017 at 5:21 am | Permalink

    great article

  2. R_Moreland
    Posted November 12, 2017 at 2:03 am | Permalink

    The following passage has always stayed with me every since I first read 1984 way back when:

    For the moment [Winston] had shut his ears to the remoter noises and was listening to the stuff that streamed out of the telescreen. It appeared that there had even been demonstrations to thank Big Brother for raising the chocolate ration to twenty grammes a week. And only yesterday, he reflected, it had been announced that the ration was to be reduced to twenty grammes a week. Was it possible that they could swallow that, after only twenty-four hours? Yes, they swallowed it. Parsons swallowed it easily, with the stupidity of an animal. The eyeless creature at the other table swallowed it fanatically, passionately, with a furious desire to track down, denounce, and vaporize anyone who should suggest that last week the ration had been thirty grammes. Syme, too-in some more complex way, involving doublethink, Syme swallowed it. Was [Winston], then, alone in the possession of a memory? – 1984, Chapter 5

    The passage applied to what I could see in the world around me. How on earth could anyone believe the nonsense which the System was pouring out via academia, corporate PR, candidate stump speeches, socially conscious sermons, high-minded bureaucratic pronouncements, or (especially!) the telescreens (aka TV). Specifically, how could anyone deny that race was real?

    Race wasn’t just a matter of “color of skin.” It was embodied (as noted) in art and literature, religion, values and politics; i.e., what men and women call civilization.

    How could people fail to notice that de-colonialization and black majority rule in Africa inevitably led to a collapse of Western style civilization and its replacement with something for the worse? Didn’t the lessons of the Congo, Idi Amin’s Uganda, the Central African “Empire,” and the nameless countries from which no news emerged teach anything? Couldn’t people see the reason that White Rhodesians and South Africans resisted black majority rule was not because they wanted to “oppress” blacks but because they were defending their own civilization – which was really our civilization? But no, the “liberals” swallowed the party line, whether out of stupidity, passion or in more complex ideological ways.

    The dilemma, of course, was that they were also foisting liberalism on White majority countries, with disastrous consequences. So you end up with Detroit and Newark being reduced to ruins, and sex slavery in Rotherham, and “teens” burning cars in Paris and Malmo, and No Go Zones carved out in once mighty European cities like petty barbarian kingdoms in the wreckage of the Roman empire. Yet liberals still believed in liberalism, and used their control of the propaganda apparatus to enforce the orthodoxy.

    A lot of it goes back to liberals having no meaning in their lives. Religion, family, tradition, history, every last foundation which gives people meaning, has been purged as obsolete and for being impediments to immanentizing the eschaton. This is the motivation, I think, for the recent liberal mania for iconoclasm (using blacks as the street muscle). You start by tearing down Confederate statues and proceed to vaporizing everything prior to the latest CNN bulletin. And whether we are talking neo-liberal/neo-conservative support for Arab Spring uprisings, or purple haired cat ladies screeching across the the fruited plains, it’s the permanent revolution writ on 500 channels of telescreen.

    Liberals have to believe in liberalism because without it, they have nothing to give their lives meaning. This last year’s over-the-top hysteria is one symptom, whether the
    post-Trump election meltdown or the panic post-Charlottesville. Liberals just can not swallow that there are people who have soul. Which implies that the Alt Right is on the right track.

    Something to think about in the coming chaos…

    • Posted November 12, 2017 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

      I’m always interested in the arc of others’ journeys that eventually took them to the shores of the Alt Right/Dissident Right. John’s excellent post is accentuated by R_Moreland’s excellent comment, one of the best comments I’ve read anywhere about anything in a long time. You should be writing this up as an original post itself, R_Moreland.

    • Apeneck Sweeney
      Posted November 12, 2017 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

      “Liberals have to believe in liberalism because without it, they have nothing to give their lives meaning.”

      Seventeenth century Christian theologian John Locke is widely acknowledged as the father of liberalism. While liberalism, of course, isn’t actually a religion, it has the characteristics of religion because it’s really a variant form of Christianity. The fervent belief in egalitarianism, regardless of race, was put into practice in America by the Christians of the North, who opposed the Christians of the South and advanced the negro to legal equality with themselves at the conclusion of the Civil War. It wasn’t “foisted” on them by anyone. They did it willingly, patting themselves on the back for their imagined virtue all the while. In the Second World War, the same Christian fanatic devotion to the cause of racial equality erupted again. Today’s still-ongoing struggle to push equality further is only another instance of this continuing religious agenda.

      Yes, I know what some will say. “That’s not real Christianity!” Or, “The mainstream churches have been hijacked!” But if you look back over Christianity’s long history, you find plenty of religious disputes. Christianity has almost constantly been a divisive force among whites (e.g., the Thirty Years’ War, or the Albigensian Crusade, just to name a couple), fighting some heresy or other. From the very beginning, Christians have been perpetually trying to decide who are the “real” Christians and who are the fakes. The upshot in the West is that the triumph of Christianity has been so complete that even the atheists are now Christians in the sense that they have accepted the Christian point of view on so-called “human rights” and race relations, the distinctive but wholly imaginary “brotherhood of man” so conspicuously part of Christian doctrine. Even a man like Richard Dawkins, who ought to know better, believes this, and cherishes it as a goal worth striving for.

      • R_Moreland
        Posted November 13, 2017 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

        Today’s struggle between globalist-egalitarians on one side and nationalists-traditionalists on the other shares many similarities with the European Wars of Religion (say, from the Reformation, 1517+, to the conclusion of the 30 Years War, 1648).

        It’s been commented at various websites how post-modern liberalism (for a lack of a better term) acts like a caricature of a religion: the professions of faith, the millenarism, the rituals for dealing with real and imagined guilt, the shabby little inquisitions against heretics (“racists,” et alia), the holy wars declared on dissenters from the Confederacy to Charlottesville.

        What liberalism lacks is a spiritual or metaphysical dimension. A true religion, or even philosophy, removes the element of alienation by providing a higher plane into which the individual can integrate themself. But liberalism promises only the earthly paradise and nothing beyond (“immanentizing the eschaton” to get all Robert Anton Wilson here).

        This is one reason, I think, we see liberals going into lunatic overdrive in response to any kind of opposition which does not buy into their worldview, e.g., the election of Donald Trump, or the Alt Right marching into a College town in Virginia. They can not deal with a vision which contains a supra-individual aspect such as nation or race. So they attack everything in their path like, well, a ravaging army out of the Wars of Religion – whether firebombing Dresden or tearing down CSA statues. (Iconoclasm has, of course, a long and sorry history in religious struggles, something which liberals who scoff at “religious intolerance” might ponder, though they will likely not.)

        When liberals stare into the void, they see nothing looking back at them, forever. When nationalists stare into the void they see their people going back into the mists of pre-history and extending into the future of mankind conquering space.

        The dilemma for today is in getting nationalists to mobilize for the struggle which is raging all about them. It might be worthwhile to take a closer look at the Wars of Religion to see how Europeans sorted it out four or five centuries ago.

        • Apeneck Sweeney
          Posted November 14, 2017 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

          “When liberals stare into the void, they see nothing looking back at them, forever.”

          Let’s not get carried away. Many liberals are self-identified Christians, and indeed, all of the mainstream churches have liberal views on race. In fact, mainstream Christian churches are major culprits in helping flood white areas with non-whites. Liberalism itself isn’t incompatible with the usual Christian belief the divinity of Jesus and in an afterlife. Liberal attitudes on race are just an implementation of the distinctively Christian idea of the imaginary “brotherhood of man”.

          Those liberals and outright communists who are quite vocal about their opposition to Christianity are a minority of all liberals, although a highly visible and vocal one. They are people who apparently either don’t understand, or don’t want to admit, the Christian origins of most of their worldview. The twentieth century is remarkable for being the era in which the two-thousand-years-long internecine struggles of Christianity first became fully secularized, even to the extent of one side denying they were Christians at all, or else of making belief in Jesus merely optional. The unappreciated genius of Marx consisted in making a re-interpretation of Christianity specifically tailored to whites of an industrial age, while simultaneously concealing its parentage with a superficial rejection of religion as “the opium of the people”. This set up a false opposition with Christianity that continues to confuse many.

          “When nationalists stare into the void they see their people going back into the mists of pre-history and extending into the future of mankind conquering space. ”

          Racism entails the complete rejection of the Christian “brotherhood of man” worldview. That’s a sine qua non. Whether the white race will want to or need to break itself up into separate nation states is a question that will only arise once that rejection occurs, and it begins to see itself as an entity worth preserving.

    • nineofclubs
      Posted November 12, 2017 at 5:27 pm | Permalink

      Agree with Logical Meme’s assessment of both Mr Morgan’s article and your comments here, R Moreland.

      Both exemplify the best of Counter Currents – and remind us of why this is the premium WN website operating at the moment.

      .

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