Posts Tagged With: politics

The Orobouros and the Alt Right

I had been reading in Julius Evola’s book, the  Hermetic Tradition, about the Alchemical image of the Orobouros—the snake biting it’s own tail.  I first tried to tackle this ponderous work some 20 years ago, after I saw that Carl Jung cited it as source material for his classic book, Psychology and Alchemy.  I again returned to it recently when I’d heard that the alt right was greatly influenced by Evola’s dark, cyclical view of history, as well as his particular brand of arcane, spiritual racism.
I then saw an article by Maureen Dowd, who compared Donald Trump to the Orobouros.  I took this synchronicity as sign I should further meditate on this ancient image of western esotericism as a way to gain a more holistic view of a dangerously polarized political landscape which loomed beyond the hermetically sealed world of the dogfish Bay Marina.
Dowd writes of 45’s isolation by an inner circle who shelter him against the verities of the exterior world, parrot his mad ejaculations, and compound his delusional paranoia.  She evokes the Orobouros to point out his self -destructive qualities.
This mandala has long been contemplated by spiritual adepts who sought awakening to ultimate truth of Unity.  Evola says it represents not so much a philosophical concept as much as a state beyond the dichotomies of I and not-I, inside and outside.  According to the literature, the full realization of this state is the “first matter of the wise.”
In the tradition, this unitary awareness is the beginning of the great work.  But in Evola’s dark, elitist, and apocalyptic elaboration, this work is a cyclic process that, after ages of decline brought about by egalitarianism, multi-culturalism, and democratic “leveling,” heralds the triumphant return of the golden age.  He views history as a cycle of degeneration and regeneration which turns in a series toward its ultimate realization in the re-establishment of a hyper-masculine, solar king which dawns only after violent revolution upsets the status quo.  The losers swept up in this upheaval are expendable, and quaint notions like charity, love, and compassion are jettisoned for the profits of a corporate elite.  Evola may have attained some degree of genuine insight into the spiritual truth expressed by the Orobouros, as well as to how that essential unity is not obstructed by its infinite manifestations (dharmas) in the field of space and time.  Evola studied the Pali cannon of the Hinayana (lesser vehicle) Buddhism, which focuses on self liberation from the cycles of existence (Samsara.)  In contrast, the Mahayana (greater vehicle) stressed the cultivation of loving kindness as not only ethical, but the means by which we awaken to the ultimate truth of essential unity even while working to aleviate suffering in the relative world of Samsara.
  As long as we have not realized that the mode of being of our mind resides in the union of relative truth and absolute truth—a realization that corresponds to awakening—these two truths are seen as separate instead of being seen in their original unity.
Bokar Rimpoche
From the viewpoint of ultimate truth, the dichotomy between positive and negative lacks reality, but from the perspective of relative truth, the karmic results of negative actions are inevitable.  The cultivation of loving kindness is essential until ultimate truth is realized.
  This fundamental split between the two understandings of the unitary state—symbolized by the Orobouros– is reflected in the polarized debates surrounding health care and immigration. Republicans seem to champion only the needs of those inside the adamant circumference of racial and economic privilege.
  One of the strangest aspects of our rancorous, political debate is how these venerable teachings are spun by intellectuals of the alt right; and how Evola’s  brand of spiritual fascism provides ideological cover for the rise of global fascism.
Categories: Books I love, Musings, politics, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Speculum Warfare

  We saw the projection dynamic in play during the second debate when Hillary, rightly, said 45 was Putin’s puppet.  “You’re the puppet!  You’re the puppet!” was 45’s childish reply.
I reminded of the ancient, Chinese art  of Feng Shui where, through practical as well as highly esoteric remedies, the built environment  was altered in ways auspicious to health and prosperity.  Mirrors were mounted on home fronts to counter the negative chi of neighbors.  The neighbor then responded in kind, but with a larger mirror, and it soon  escalated into all out, speculum warfare.  I see something similar in the endless projections that one side of the political spectrum visits upon the other to manipulate public perception.
  Like 45, Milo Yiannopoulos is an Internet troll, a cartoon character manifest as a faux-real person.  The cyber-world has so morphed with reality that a ficticious, TV personality can become President, and gaudy, physical spectres are  conjured from the etherial world of online trollery.

  Milo Yiannopoulos’s ambiguous role is fabricated to appeal to opposite ends of conservative spectrum, so that both sides might then be swayed toward more extreme, alt-right views. He explained his role perfectly by saying his position with Breitbart countered the perception that the Alt Right is homophobic, and racist.  He’s a shill to make their hateful rhetoric appeal to edgy progressives and third-party stooges in order to draw them into the alt-right fold.   Also, since Yiannopoulos is gay, the alt-right can spin this to deflect accusations of intolerance.

  There are other, more esoteric, means Bannon employs in his global, coup attempt.
The world was perplexed by 45’s recent, shrill warning about immigration when he said: “Look what’s happening in Sweden!”  We are quick to cite this as just another example of his lies.  Then, a few days later, riots break out in Rinkeby.  The Alt Right News then posts an article proclaiming 45’s near mystical powers of prognostication.
  But I wonder if some darker truth was revealed by 45’s “prophesy.”  Bannon has made no secret of his dark vision of historical progress as a series of violent upheavals; and is eager to set the next phase in motion by exacerbating global conflict.  He is quite capable of hiring thugs to incite riots in Sweden in order to support his call for an immigration ban. I think 45’s mysterious warning about Sweden was actually another brain fart along the lines of his famous “Russia, if you’re listening” gaff.  45 did indeed have foreknowledge of the riots–just not of the mysterious, prophetic kind.  He knew Bannon had cooked up another pretext for the planned expulsion of immigrants.  This strategy accords with the Yiannopoulos riots in Berkeley where–says Robert Reich— thugs were hired to amplify the Alt Right claims of Liberal intolerance, and justify violence against peaceful protest.  In the context of this twisted form of psychological and spiritual warfare, it is fascinating to consider that Bannon is a follower of that esoteric fascist, Julius Evola.
   It is easy to get lost in this carnival house of mirrors.  The Alt Right exploits the gullibility and myopia of both extremes of the political spectrum in order to realize their goal of global dominance. It helps to appreciate the ambiguous nature of this struggle in order to remove ourselves from the dizzying play of dissembling and projection.  The art of Feng Shui helps us to appreciate the paradoxical nature of today’s reality and, as remedy to political and spiritual malaise, design that golden bridge that Sun Tzu, admonished us to build for our enemy’s retreat.
Categories: Art, Musings, politics, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Russian Iago

I used to listen to Thom Hartman in my studio.  I loved listening to his astute, well-articulated arguments as I struggled with canvas and paint.  I especially enjoyed the lunch with Bernie hour.  But I was later dismayed to learn that Thom’s program was funded by the Russian Government—or shall we say—oligarchs?
Through the election until now, I’ve been struck by the propaganda, mendacity and maddening projection, whereby paid trolls exploit gullible viewers and draw them toward extreme positions on both the left and right.
Opposite this approach is the “friend argument,” as when 45–under Bannon’s council–tries to combat his sexist, homophobic image by nominating Gorsuch who, because he has a gay friend, seems sympathetic to LGTBQ community.
Breitbart uses Milo Yiannopoulos similarly.  But rather than appease moderate, gay Republicans with a dog bone, Yiannapoulos’s appeals to young radicals who can be persuaded by his gaudily ambiguous persona to embrace Steve Bannon’s racist agenda.
I am trolled mercilessly on RT threads when I bring up Thom’s questionable relationship with Putin’s main propaganda arm.  The only articulate response I get are the familiar, tedious attacks against the DNC and strenuous denials of Putin/45 collusion.  This concerns me greatly since I still agree with most of Thom’s arguments. But since Putin would not do anything counter to his authoritarian agenda, there must be some payoff for his toleration of Thom’s views.  Putin is a master manipulator who plays plays our differences, as well as our accord, against one another.  He is the Russian Iago.
The trade-off is that while Putin provides a platform for Thom’s well-reasoned rhetoric, Thom delivers an audience of educated hipsters and die-hard Berners to RT; where they see programs like Redacted tonight, that try to mould said, hipster opinions along 3rd party and alt-right lines.  And Putin comes off as open-minded to boot.  This is one way that well-meaning progressives are being played by Putin.
This is not meant to cast aspersions on Thom Hartman, Bernie Sanders, Jill Stein, or the good intentions of their supporters. But I think it’s a lapse of judgement on Thom’s part.  The trade-off isn’t worth it.
RT trolls call me paranoid and irrelevant but why should Thom Hartman be above criticism?
 Why would Putin invite a progressive, third party candidate like Jill Stein to attend the RT gala dinner alongside Michael Flynn?  Trolls say it is because their authoritarian leader is open to contrary points of view.  What a laugh.
Categories: Musings, politics, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Trolling–deplorable tactics or Art?

The word “troll” needs qualification–there are many forms. Some are ornery cranks who, at least, honestly represent their true motives. Some are masters, who raise trolling to an art form–SNL’s Fatal Attraction satire is an example–while others are paid by the alt-right to pose as progressives who encourage us to speak against our own self-interest.  Much troll activity is to get us to echo Alt-Right, talking points.

For instance, trolls–under the guise of progressives–encourage members of the resistance to gloat about the murder of a Klansman.  This only validates the extreme, right wing propaganda that claims the left is the hateful, violent party.  This image of the left as violent can be used as pretext to attack protesters.  This is crucial. At this time of escalating tensions, we can practice a compassion and human decency that accords with sound strategy–to say nothing of protecting ourselves and loved ones who participate in peaceful protests.

We need to be wary of the propaganda campaign against the DNC which encourages progressives to smear Elizabeth Warren for her alleged, selling out to establishment Democrats.  According to this line, it is not Russian interference, but she and Hillary who are ultimately responsible for # 45, as well as our current malaise. You see this echoed on the RT affiliated, Ring of Fire and Redacted Today videos.  Since Putin doesn’t allow dissenting opinion–without an ulterior motive–are the rad hosts of R of F being exploited by Putin in his attempt at a global coup?  Or are they willfully parroting his party line?

The ultimate form of control is to compel us to participate in our own subjugation. Putin, from his KGB experience, knows this well. We shouldn’t be stooges, drawn by trolls into dizzying webs of dissembling and projection.  Don’t allow them to frame the dialogue in their own terms.

Actually, there is some truth to progressive intolerance–we are intolerant of the racist and treasonous policies of the 45 gang.

 

Categories: Art, Musings, politics, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Psychogeography of Little Norway

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I’m learning the Gimp app in order to record my psychogeographical exploration of the local, urban scene.  The concept of the de’rive (drift) is a technique Situationists used to discover the hidden influences of the cityscape upon our emotional and spiritual lives.

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A unique offer

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I am humbly offering a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for students of abysmal aesthetics to hone their non-existent skills and cultivate their wretched taste.  Learn to smash the grim Archons of professionalism with time-honored techniques of subterfuge as practiced by Dadaist, Surrealist, and Situationist non-artists.

Perhaps such a claim may sound presumptuous on my part, but I assure you–if you apply yourself with courage and fortitude, you too can become a master of bad art.

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Notes toward a post 2

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The Art of Counter-Trolling

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Here is one of my humble, artistic efforts from the toxic spectacle of the elections.  One poor sap from a troll factory took of offense to my meme, saying I was disrespecting Russians who died fighting Hitler.
These are hollow words, as the factories–in their efforts to help Trump campaign–acted, in progressive guise, to help install a fascist regime in America.

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Notes toward a post

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Categories: Musings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

A word from Rumi on Trump

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