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Amazon Shop for: Aldous Huxley

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OfflineAlan Stone
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Registered: 11/23/02
Posts: 986
Loc: Ten feet up
Last seen: 11 years, 5 months
Rebellion
    #2225580 - 01/07/04 12:04 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

I've been reading some books in the last few years that have this theme in it, the latest of which are Herman Hesse's Steppenwolf and George Orwell's 1984. These books have sparked some thoughts in my head, and made me ponder the nature of my own rebellion. I was talking about this with one of my two soulmates, also a psychonaut, yesterday, and we didn't know what to think of our own rebellion.
As members of a community that's based upon the common interest in and/or usage of psychadelics, I suppose we all are a bit of a rebel, at least mentally. What I'm wondering is, what do you rebel against, more importantly why, and lastly: do you think it'll have any use eventually.
In Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, Orwell's 1984, Hesse's Steppenwolf and other books, the destiny of at least one of the main characters is always to succumb to the pressure to conform. They are all willing to part with a part of themselves they used to think of as characteristic and essential of and to their being for the sake of fitting in, finding mental peace and quiet.
So what I've thought up are naught but paradoxes concerning the nature of my own rebellion. To clarify: what me and my soulmate rebel against is the philosophical numbness and the mental vitality of a brick in the masses, against consumerism and against superficiality in general.
So on the topic of our alledged mental (that includes moral) superiority in comparison to the masses, I've reached the following conclusion. We rebel both out of some fixation in the adolescent stage of development and for the sake of the ideal. That ideal being the goal to turn ourselves into copies of a homo universalis, a being at least proficient in the sciences, the arts, and the various philosophical branches, whereas the adolescent fixation would be rooted in the incapability to fit in, and to accept the world for the state it's in. 
Somehow the mental rebellion is tied to both a boyish notion of predestination for greatness, and a genuine explorative nature.
To put it another way, our rebellion is caused by the radical difference between us and the masses, or at least our perception thereof, and could be explained in two ways. The first is that we're too close minded to accept the others for what they are (without being aware of our own narrow-mindedness), the second that the lifestyle of a consumerist, mainstream thinker seems to be totally repulsive and wholly undersirable. I guess both realities are probably true, and inseperable in a way.
On to the last issue. Harry in Steppenwolf eventually figures out his old lifestyle was wrong, and abandons his ascetic lifestyle for hedonism. Winston Smith in 1984 is brainwashed into thinking his old lifestyle was wrong and mentally deranged. I feel they have given up their courage and rewiring of the self towards the goal of fitting in, and have lost their will to be their own masters. John Savage in Brave New World loses his self-control under the influence of soma, but at least has the courage to hang himself the next morning. On the other hand, he lacked the courage to face what he'd done and recondition himself.

So... what do you think? Do you rebel? How? Why? Do you think you'll continue to have the courage/need?

Ps: Sorry about the monster post  :tongue2:


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It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.

- Aristotle


Edited by Alan Stone (01/07/04 03:39 PM)


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Invisibletekramrepus
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Registered: 02/20/02
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Re: Rebellion [Re: Alan Stone]
    #2225719 - 01/07/04 01:05 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

some people think rebellion is just the cause from the lack of inner peace.

some people dedicate their lives to rebellion.


I tell you truthfully though, if you really wish to change things, perphaps rebellion is a less than complete way, considering with the way the American Government is established now, it would be more proper to work your way up, and change things in a positive manner without violence, hate, anger, or fear.


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OfflineAlan Stone
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Registered: 11/23/02
Posts: 986
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Last seen: 11 years, 5 months
Re: Rebellion [Re: tekramrepus]
    #2226046 - 01/07/04 03:38 PM (12 years, 11 months ago)

Well, I don't live in the U.S. . . :smile:
But I'm talking about mental rebellion mainly, a divergence in lifestyle from the mainstream. Besides maybe a fear of conforming and a hate towards shallowness, the emotions you speak of aren't of relevance. I'll edit my original post for clarity.


--------------------
It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.

- Aristotle


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OfflinePositronius
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Re: Rebellion [Re: Alan Stone]
    #2226337 - 01/07/04 05:28 PM (12 years, 10 months ago)

rebellion is a marketing scheme, it sells records, clothes, movies, books, alcohol, ciggarettes and all types of useless shit.

but sometimes it is genuine, but most of the time its just a result of someone paying too much attention to the media, and/or not enough.


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and you know it like a poet, like....babydoll


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InvisibleTrueBrode
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Registered: 11/03/03
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Re: Rebellion [Re: Alan Stone]
    #2226346 - 01/07/04 05:33 PM (12 years, 10 months ago)

Everybody is rebelling against something by those definitions.

What if everyone in a society had exactly the same moral and cultural outlook, and that ideal was in place (the outlook is irrelevant)? That would be a Utopia. Uniform ignorance nullfies controversey, the non-utopia has controversey which is/leads to rebellion- can any society live outside those parameters? How?


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OfflineAlan Stone
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Re: Rebellion [Re: TrueBrode]
    #2226432 - 01/07/04 06:10 PM (12 years, 10 months ago)

Dude, I'm way too stoned to answer those questions right now. I'll have to review my answer tomorrow, and replace it by a better one.

For everyone to agree on the same moral and cultural outlook, is a utopia. Ignorance is not the only cause that could lead to the effect of eradicating controversy. 1984 discusses this. It involves doublethink, the concept of consciously knowing something to be untrue, but accepting it as full truth at the same time. This is a technique applied by all Party members in the society run by the mystified Big Brother, who is non-existant, but the embodiment of all that is desirable in a man or woman at the same time. This in turn, is the first exercise of doublethink to understand the society's structure, and quite a lot easier when caned, I can tell ya.
A non-utopian society - our own is a clear example - has controversy leading to rebellion, or just about enough ignorance and/or experience in doublethink (at which Maoists, for instance, are adept) to prevent outburst.

To live outside of those parameters would require weeding out the controversy in a way that will serve the system, i.e. you turn your adversaries into scapegoats. You'd also need to keep things local, so your populace can't see what it's like elsewhere. In order to do this, you want to keep them perpetually poor. This is accomplished by waging war on your enemies all the time, without ever winning or loosing to much, so your citizens never see the war up close, and can never contact other cultures. So there you have it, keep 'em stupid, keep projecting a demi-god image of your non-existant leader and keep 'em poor. It's all there in 1984.
You could also do the reverse. That is, weed out the less-intelligent half of the population, and repeating the process until you are satisfied. This, of course has the obvious disadvantage that the part of the population you decide to stick with would rather sit around all day debating the nature of the universe than to do menial jobs, plummeting your economy faster than you can say "Groovy, man". The intellectual elite you've taken great measure and 5 billion human lives to achieve, will starve in a matter of 107 days, providing they enjoy a good steak al cannibal. So the former option is by far preferrable - though, as such, totalitarian.


--------------------
It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.

- Aristotle


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OfflineMadHamish
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Registered: 11/03/03
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Re: Rebellion [Re: Alan Stone]
    #2226633 - 01/07/04 07:14 PM (12 years, 10 months ago)

Alan Stone! Man, you got soul brother!

*blackness confirmed*


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Valar Morghulis


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InvisibleTrueBrode
Stranger

Registered: 11/03/03
Posts: 287
Re: Rebellion [Re: Alan Stone]
    #2227019 - 01/07/04 11:04 PM (12 years, 10 months ago)

I have not yet read 1984; maybe it is finally time. Doubletalk, yes that is a concept that seems to apply here. To draw on Plato, one could also look at his “myth of the metals” scheme, a step he plans to take in creating his perfect society. The plan, basically, is to tell all the people that a divine spark is invested in each of them- some have a bronze spark, and then silver or gold. Plato wanted to sell this lie to the people (engrain it into the culture) so the people would feel connected and divine, possibly more inclined to fully accept whatever faculty they perform, equating to importance and pride, juxtaposed to feeling worthless and low. He wants this so that the- what we may term- blue-collar class does not rebel against their positions or standing. This may be a logical way out of the scapegoat clause: tricking your adversaries (selling them a lie) into believing they are an integral/important to your new utopian system, and using them in a way you really wanted to all along?

Now, in our modern world, as we experience the rise of a powerful, more encompassing government (whether by its natural evolution, or what I believe- its deliberate manipulation into a one world fascist state for the global elite’s benefits and visions) we may actually be falling for a trap oriented like this. We have our picture boxes telling us how the world is under control, and seemingly following the actions of our leaders closely- after all we can see George Bush walking around the White House lawn- but leaving off when necessary, when the shit hits the fan. This is a real world situation, but to draw on a theoretical one, say Gilman’s Herland for instance, uniform CHOICE, not ignorance seemed to phase in their, at least in my humble opinion, near perfect society. Could bring up another issue here: If the forefathers/founders of the Utopian society pass it down, than their heirs inherit their vision, thus choice exists only for the founders, which means that every generation after is still living in an ignorant utopia- will the standards of that Utopia eventually whither away? Think about how important the ten commandments were at one time, now there are only a few laws on there still relevant to enforce. Time changes the viability of the Utopia, unless the Utopia is stagnant.

I asked you those questions because I wanted to get to the core of a society without controversy and what it really entails and if rebellion is healthy. I consider myself to rebel, so to speak, but I often question what any perfect society could look like, if it would mean that ignorance wins out. Here is what I have come up with, but it is completely based on my belief that there are objective truths. For a perfect society to develop, we would have to hold a strong conviction for our morals (objective truths), strong enough that we would not need any laws- which I believe are the true detriment of society (only in a theoretical sense obviously). Now how we would get to that high a moral standard, and what morals we would choose to abide by (though I would go by the do onto others standard), would be nearly impossible to arrive at in our current society.


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OfflineFrog
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Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 4,284
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Re: Rebellion [Re: TrueBrode]
    #2227465 - 01/08/04 05:08 AM (12 years, 10 months ago)

This is a public service announcement reminding you to BREAK THOSE PARAGRAPHS UP for the benefit of the stupid people on the shroomery.

*You will now be returned to your regular programming.*


--------------------
The day will come when, after harnessing the ether, the winds, the tides, gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of love. And, on that day, for the second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.  -Teilard


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Amazon Shop for: Aldous Huxley

General Interest >> Philosophy, Sociology & Psychology

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