25 May 2019

Nihilism is Garbage

Friedrich Nietzsche: The Anti-Nihilist.
"I am Superman. Look at my muscles."

Nihilism is garbage. If you are a nihilist you are a nobody, a non-entity, a loser, and a defeatist.

I am intimately familiar with suffering. Injuries, disease, constant pain, years of unemployment and a string of dead-end jobs that offer no fulfillment. I know it all, and I'll admit to becoming a little bitter over the years, though I do think it has helped me advance philosophically.

People like to blame God, or speculate on how a life full of suffering is devoid of all meaning. The modern world feeds this mentality. It is designed from on high to make us feel inadequate. Anti-social media want us to feel like all of our frienimies are doing so much better than us when they are often just as miserable. Advertising wants us to be miserable so that we buy more crap we don't need or want. The media live off of suffering: "If it bleeds, it leads." Add to this the armies of Internet "black pills" and doomsayers who sell ebooks and subscriptions to even more doom online, and you have a recipe for nihilism, which Friedrich Nietzsche and personal experience in the world will tell you is currently the dominant philosophy of the West. Once we got rid of Christianity, when we killed God, we now find ourselves in this nightmare world where life is devoid of meaning.

God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we, murderers of all murderers, console ourselves? That which was the holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet possessed has bled to death under our knives. Who will wipe this blood off us? With what water could we purify ourselves? What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we need to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we not ourselves become gods simply to be worthy of it? There has never been a greater deed; and whosoever shall be born after us - for the sake of this deed he shall be part of a higher history than all history hitherto."

From Nietzsche's The Gay Science
Nietzsche recognized that with the advent of the nihilism brought on by the new scientific materialism of modernity (and the full-on celebration of meaninglessness that has come about in post-modernism), we would face an existential crisis. The idea of God is so central to giving meaning to our lives that without it we are no better than ants, toiling day and night for jobs we hate just to keep our heads above water while we fill the pockets of Mammon worshipers who have managed to take the reigns of civilization, all without meaning or purpose.

God is dead, and we have killed him, and we are woefully incapable of filling the void in our current condition. It is one thing to feel at conflict with society and man's laws, but it is quite another to feel at conflict with the Source of all life and morality itself. Eliminating God leads to the enshrinement of the State, as the vacant throne of the Absolute cannot remain vacant in the mind of man for long. Whether the natural sciences or the all-powerful State, something man-made must take the role left vacant by the crucifixion of God. This has led to the worst totalitarianism, as, while God's laws are immutable, there is no limit to His mercy. However, the State has no mercy; it has no room for forgiveness of 'sins' against political correctness, as the State recognizes no authority outside itself. This is why the authoritarian Godless State has led to the worst atrocities in history: the murder of hundreds of millions with industrial sterility and efficiency.

When you no longer believe in God then you will believe in anything, and everything becomes permissible. If God is not your master than you are a slave to your senses. You are like the addict, the drunkard who cannot control how he drinks, but is controlled by his drinking. When you are free to do anything then you lose all of your freedom, because you are no longer in control of your body, but your body is in control of you. And when your body controls you then you are open to being controlled by the powers that be to fuel their endless lust for more power.

The reverse of nihilism, of "If it bleeds, it leads," is the philosophy of Major Dutch Schaefer: "If it bleeds, we can kill it."

The movie Predator shows us that no matter how powerful the adversary, no matter how hopeless the situation, our enemies are no less mortal than we are, and our troubles can be overcome. We just have to become the best possible version of ourselves. We have to become better than we thought we could be. Dutch didn't win because he was stronger than the Predator, or because he was necessarily smarter either. The Predators are thousands of years ahead of humans, having fully developed interstellar travel, cloaking devices, universal translators, and super medicine that allows for rapid healing of what would otherwise be incapacitating wounds. Dutch was able to win because he was able to exploit the weaknesses of his opponent to his advantage. He may not be smarter, but he can think on his feet and is more adaptable.

This is the philosophy of existentialism. Yes, life is full of suffering, but it is also full of joy, and you're hurting yourself to focus on the suffering while ignoring the joy. There are simple steps to reclaiming your joy and to once again find meaning and purpose in your life. Like everything it all begins with a choice. You have to take control of your own life and reclaim your birthright. You can take your life back because you choose to.