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Nihilism, Futurist Traditionalism and Conservationism

Musings on NIHILISM

20 09 11 - 20:51

From the mailbag:


Nihilism is far from the isolated, oddball, radical philosophy many consider it to be. I would suggest that nihilism is the logical "conclusion" of most modern humanistic philosophies. More importantly, I believe that nihilistic death is accepted, though not recognized, as the universal destination of humankind by all who do not believe in a life after death. I would suggest that if we embrace a modern secular philosophy, or no philosophy/religion at all, we must embrace nihilism. We will assert that if you believe that your existence may end at physical death, you are accepting the idea that "nothing" may follow death, and you are by definition accepting the possibility that "nihilism" is correct. Once we realize that the acceptance of nihilism is a necessary consequence of our humanistic beliefs, or non-beliefs, we will be able to decide for ourselves if what we currently believe to be true, is what we really want to believe is true. Until we understand the nature of "nothing", we may well have difficulty appreciating "anything". - "LifeNotes"


While I don't agree with this person, I think he or she makes a reasonable case with this statement, cited in his or her email to me:


"According to absurdism, humans historically attempt to find meaning in their lives. Traditionally, this search results in one of two conclusions: either that life is meaningless, or life contains within it a purpose set forth by a higher power - a belief in God, or adherence to some religion or other abstract concept." - PedoPedia


A few thoughts:


  • Obviously, the "nihilism" described above is fatalism. Nothing means anything, so why bother creating meaning? Instead, revel in the meaningless, namely physical sensations, social power and egodrama. Fatalism either leads immediately to suicide or, as in the vast majority of cases, to extreme individualism which is itself a code-word for narcissistic, self-absorbed, denial-based refusal to entertain the notion the world is real. That in turn takes many, many forms, including all liberalism and many religions.

  • The choice of absurdism is completely broken. First, it assumes the world should bow to a human perspective; what drug addict wrote that? Second, it assumes these two choices exist because we're seeking inherent meaning. We forget that meaning is in our interpretation. That doesn't mean any "meaning" is valid (I'm just living for this turd in a sock, maaaan) but that meaning does not exist in the world per se. It takes thinking beings to discover the mechanisms of that world, and to find out why to value them.

  • The vital point this person makes is that humanism leads naturally to fatalism through narcissism. With nothing larger than the self, why bother? About anything, I mean. Do what's convenient and never exert yourself for a cause. That in turn leads to depression, because without meaning, life is a series of sensations that get boring over time and eventually become oppressive.



Food for thought, or sodomy.

twelve comments

nihilist in principle, idealist in practice
Another chapter in the ongoing battle between Vijay and the English language.

"Obviously, the "nihilism" described above is fatalism. "

No, fatalism ascribes a value to giving up trying to change the inevitable. The above doesn't recommend that, or anything for that matter.

The above is a bit confused, however, because it seems to equate one specific instance of nihilism, that concerning what happens after death, with all of nihilism.

"Nothing means anything, so why bother creating meaning? Instead, revel in the meaningless, namely physical sensations, social power and egodrama. "

It doesn't clearly recommend any of that, at least not in the part you quoted.

Moreover, the question whether or not we should create meaning is itself a value question, and to answer it presupposes we have already accepted some type of value.

"First, it assumes the world should bow to a human perspective; "

No, I don't believe it does, although I'm not intimately familiar with absurdism. But I'm pretty sure that it is not so ridiculous as to ascribe morality judgments to what the world does or doesn't do.

"Second, it assumes these two choices exist because we're seeking inherent meaning. We forget that meaning is in our interpretation."

Well, some people aren't satisfied with that, although I agree that inherent meaning ultimately does not exist.

"That doesn't mean any "meaning" is valid (I'm just living for this turd in a sock, maaaan) but that meaning does not exist in the world per se."

In other words, no meaning is valid. Or invalid, for that matter.

"It takes thinking beings to discover the mechanisms of that world, and to find out why to value them."

I'm all for discovering the mechanisms of the world. But there's no way to figure out why to value them, without already assuming a value to start with, thus falling into the pit of circularity.

"With nothing larger than the self, why bother? About anything, I mean. Do what's convenient and never exert yourself for a cause. That in turn leads to depression, because without meaning, life is a series of sensations that get boring over time and eventually become oppressive."

This is why you are not a nihilist. A true nihilist doesn't care about any of these questions, at all, and doesn't care what people do or why they do it, or at least admits that there's no reliable basis to care about them. nihilist in principle, idealist in practice (Email ) - 21-09-’11 09:54
brunHILDE FAN #1!!!
LOL YAY GO BRUNHILDE!!! brunHILDE FAN #1!!! - 21-09-’11 11:29
hi
Stop nitpicking, daschuel. You're trying to take everything to a ridiculously specific level. hi - 21-09-’11 14:01
nitpicker, I guess
I'm just nitpicking the nitpicking. Don't you think the OP is already nitpicking the letter?

Also, I think the point is more important than nitpicking. True nihilism means rejecting all value, inherent or otherwise. That means no traditionalism, no pragmatism, no love of life, no importance. Not even a value on discerning reality. nitpicker, I guess (Email ) - 21-09-’11 14:07
<span class='registered'>Druid</span>
im curious as to this sites opinion on OBEs and NDEs. anyone? Druid - 21-09-’11 14:18
Gaylord
Huxley, in the Perennial Philosophy, acknowledges a personal God and direct interaction between the world and the divine Ground, specifically, miracles/telepathy with the creator. Nihilism and Perennialism are incompatible. Gaylord - 21-09-’11 15:21
Gaylord
Druid, astral bodies bodies are real. But sodomites like me prefer the carnal world. Gaylord - 21-09-’11 15:25
<span class='registered'>Druid</span>
i think theyre hallucinations, but my point was if these are real, then technically, arent they an afterlife? i dont believe in anything but the physical. matter, energy, and void. but i cant deny the existence of OBEs and NDEs. what causes them, and can this be seen as an afterlife? Druid - 21-09-’11 17:04
Gaylord
Lord have mercy on you simpleton materialists. Gaylord - 21-09-’11 19:43
Your Mom
Fuck off, Dave Your Mom - 22-09-’11 19:39
LOSERFAGDEATH
Who gives a fuck,m amirighte

do u guys have a dealre for acid? mine got busted LOSERFAGDEATH - 23-09-’11 08:09
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