My Progress

I write in “Introduction to the Reflections Bulletin” that I intend to put political solutions back on the table. I believe I have already successfully outlined the problem of civilization in general and industrial society in particular, at least in the ways where I have something new to offer. I have also clarified the difference between the “enemy” and the “target,” a major step. See Repent to the Primitive, esp. ch. “A Promised Future”; “A Critique of the Concept of ‘The System’“; “Notes on Revolution, or Reaction“; “Misc. Notes on Misc. Notes,” notes II, IV-VII. Now it remains to show the first steps toward responding to the problem of world society — holistically — a grand strategy. My next book, then, which I am working on now, will cover this problem. I mentioned it in the preface of Repent to the Primitive as From Conservation to Reaction.

I have responded to nearly all the holes in the rewilding critique of industry that I see as most important: industrial medicine (“Toward a Critique of Industrial Medicine“); the status of women in traditional societies, and the gender problem generally (ibid.; and “Sex and Civilization“); the value of art (“Words of Wisdom and Folly,” note VIII).

I have clarified and exacted many of the philosophical and political concepts in Repent to the Primitive: selfhood (“Words of Wisdom and Folly,” note IX); humanism and progressivism (“A Critique of the Concept of ‘Leftism’“; “Notes on Humanism and Progressivism“; “A Response to My Humanist Critics“; “Reflections, Random and Recursive,” note VI); human needs (“A Critique of Repent to the Primitive“); the NHG ideal (“A Critique of the NHG Ideal“); the place of nihilism in the critique (“A Provisional Synthesis“; “Notes on a Psychotherapeutic Method,” notes I-II; “Toward an Anti-Modern Metaphysics, or Epistemology“); what human rewilding might look like (“Toward a Human Rewilding Method,” esp. note III; “Reflections, Random and Recursive,” note III; “Incivility“; and this quote: “In sum, ‘rewilding’ as I conceive it is just like psychotherapy today, which ‘releases’ various tensions in the individual. It is only a fuller and more holistic method of liberating the mind and body of these tensions, these blocks, these internal dams. It is a means of again making man the dignified predator that he is.”).

I have resolved sufficiently most of the major psychological problems I needed to address, and have a strong foundation for further personal work (“On My Ignorance and Isolation“; “Misc. Notes“; “Oh…“; “On My Great Wisdom and Abundant Social Life“; “Meditation Notes 1, 2, 3“; “You Can Call Me Jacobi“; “Who Is Jacobi?“).

I have not: approached the overpopulation problem; sufficiently analyzed the relationship between civilization and sexual repression, the “woman question,” or the critique of industrial medicine, and I leave these tasks to my readers; internationalized the rewilding analysis; sufficiently framed the tasks of human rewilding.

My future work:

consolidate my expanded rewilding analysis in a book of essays; outline a grand strategic framework for rewilding; outline an approach to human rewilding.

investigate the pre-socratics; the Nietzsche I haven’t read; childhood development; ecopsychology; psychoanalysis; mind-body relationship; mysticism and similar philosophies, e.g., Heideggerianism; anti-globalist political movements.

4 Comments

  • Robert P. McGuinn says:

    As you know, the fossil record indicates we are entering the 6th major extinction. The cause of this one is us, of course. But…the other 5 were caused by things other than humans. Our evolutionary line emerged from a surviving small mammalian ancestor after the 5th major extinction event. Given this fact, I harbor no guilt of angst over the current and ongoing human-caused extinction. We are simply the latest major natural emergent phenomenon to drive extinction. We are a part of this system and emerged from it. We are not separate or different. We are not different than bark beetles, wild-fire, hurricanes, volcanoes, and meteors. Expand the time horizon even further and it gets even more interesting. In 5 billion years, our Sun will begin to die. But that is long after the oceans will be boiling away, which is projected at 1 billion years. These seemingly distant facts are nonetheless uncontroversial facts which should inform one’s actions and thinking today.

    So, who’s to say that even if we were able to achieve all of the objectives of the re-wilding project that something wouldn’t just come along and wipe out our handiwork anyway? I think this cycle of ultimate destruction and reset is just an unavoidable reality and an inherent part of the way the larger system functions. These are unavoidable facts, not speculation. So, what’s the point in wrapping yourself around this particular axle of human social change and individual liberation?

    I can only conclude, for my own sake, at least, that trying to influence the particular social and cultural movements of the human animal is of very little import in the grand scheme of things. I, then, do not understand the enormous about of energy you spend thinking about this topic. I see that you believe that it matters, but I am perplexed. I think you have chosen a very small and frustrating game that will drive you to madness in the end. The bulk of humans will never participate in your project, either through coercion or force, and what the bulk of humans are doing is what matters in the end anyway. We will ultimately hit the brick wall at the end of this particular road, and that is what will actually cause change, not any particular small group of humans behaving in a certain way contrary to mass behavior.

    We are caught, you just don’t have to acknowledge your captors. You can transcend.

    Robert

    • Robert P. McGuinn says:

      p.s. This is coming from someone who has spent, and continues to spend, his entire career as a Conservation Biologist. So I have seen about every approach imaginable to this topic. I realize that your role in this, and your approach, is far outside the mainstream efforts, but I think there are useful parallels. In some ways, I see your efforts as more honest, if less realistic, than the main stream conservation community. We just have to admit that we are on a hell-bound train and we can’t get off. I choose to take a more cosmic perspective at this stage of my life (I’m 47). My job is to become a happy little cog in the big machine until it’s over, for me, at least. Movements bore me, confuse me, and make me feel bad. Most of it is just virtue-signaling nonsense anyway. It is all pretty much the same, from the most radically restrictive lifestyles to the most extravagant, the difference is minuscule, energetically speaking. Energy is neither created nor destroyed. Movements are simply that, movements.

      • Robert P. McGuinn says:

        p.p.s. If you want to get really practical, move on to engineered solutions and drop all of the behavioral stuff. Engineering is more about doing rather than ‘not doing’, which is more compatible with human nature. People hate ‘not-doing’, it is no way to create a sustained movement.

    • admin says:

      “So, who’s to say that even if we were able to achieve all of the objectives of the re-wilding project that something wouldn’t just come along and wipe out our handiwork anyway?”

      Absolutely nothing can ensure this. “Placing our bets.”

      “I think this cycle of ultimate destruction and reset is just an unavoidable reality and an inherent part of the way the larger system functions. These are unavoidable facts, not speculation.”

      I agree. See the final sentence in the opening quote of “Resurrecting Dionysus.”

      “So, what’s the point in wrapping yourself around this particular axle of human social change and individual liberation?”

      At base, I don’t know. As I write in “The Question of Revolution,” section 7.1. What I am engaging in is largely a matter of prediction. There will be a widespread reaction against world society and its technicians. I am placing my bets on that side of the fight, because it more than the alternatives appeal to me. I don’t actually see any other way.

      In regards to “trying to influence” things, see again section 7.1 of the above essay, esp. it’s opening quote:

      It was said long ago that politics is the art of the possible. That does not suppress our initiative: since we do not know the future, we have only, after carefully weighing everything, to push in our direction. But that reminds us of the gravity of politics; it obliges us, instead of simply forcing our will, to take a look hard among the facts for the shape they should take. —Merleau-Ponty

      “The bulk of humans will never participate in your project, either through coercion or force, and what the bulk of humans are doing is what matters in the end anyway.”

      I don’t believe this. They’re already participating.

      “We just have to admit that we are on a hell-bound train and we can’t get off.”

      Exactly.

      I think much of this will be resolved by reading my recent essay, “The Parable of the Magician.”

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