Introduction to the Death of Death
and why you should read history book
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about dying in war lately. One of the big challenges, one of the big glowing red weak spots of late modernity-mindset and our conceptualisation of history is, the question: “Why would you storm Normandy”. The question varies a bit based on where you are geographically, but it’s something like “why would you run into machine gun fire, what are you, stupid?”. What possessed men to not just risk death, but apparently, go in willingly?
We cannot account for it in our cultural framework. It doesn't make sense, for an entity who is a logical “pleasure maximising” machine, to storm Normandy. To account for this having happened, we must make seriously weird judgements about the people who did: They were all retarded.
They didn’t know any better and didn't realise that they were not maximising pleasure. They didn’t Have The Data. Storming Normandy, on an individual level, must be a miscalculation, somehow. The clever man would have not joined the army, or if he was conscripted, he should have faked being retarded as a way to get out of it. That way you could stay home and eat nice meals and have sex, maximising pleasure.
So we are left with the only two options: Either, everyone who stormed Normandy was literally retarded, or, the framework of individual psychology and the assumptions of industrial society, late modernity, neo liberalism, etc, are wrong, in part or in full, about it’s assumptions about human nature. So far so good.
Trench warfare is the key to all of this. It’s the most retarded thing we’ve ever had in wars. Trench warfare in 1914-1920 is when it spilled over. You can run a world on a world-view with mistaken assumptions for a while, but if you get too efficient at it and create the industrial revolution, at some point those mistaken assumptions rise to the surface. Trench warfare as a concept is a critique of neo-liberalism, because neo-liberalism cannot account for it. And when we, as neo-liberals, look at it, all we can see it madness. Like looking at a dissociative episode. Like looking directly at an eclipse.
We make movies about it, about how sad they were? Or something? Sad soldier boy thinking about going home to gf? To smash?? “But how can they be sad about it and still join up? Aha, an evil state must have forced them to join.” You can see the bedrock of every so called “intellectual” development of the last 100 years in the way we try to create a cohesive narrative (which is how you treat PTSD btw, “creating a cohesive narrative” for a traumatic event) to explain the first person view of Trench Warfare - in the same way you can see the bedrock of every political development in the last ten years in the micro-lab experiments of internet forums, in the same way you can see the link between video games journalism and Donald Trump.
The efficiency of war, as increased with the “efficiency” of all other industrial processes of the time, reveals an inherent contradiction in the world-view, which cannot be explained, or even represented by the contemporary mind, without either overtly or secretly, thinking “well they didn't know any better. They didn’t know about tv and candy and having sex”, patronizing them. No one respects a ww1 veteran, they are seen as like, retarded clowns who have some kind of religious significance. But no one *respects* them, as “individuals :^)”. Same for ww2, first one’s just a stronger metaphor.
“Alienation” is the removal of man from the process of production which creates the means of his survival. ok. Technological alienation is exacerbating this process and applying it directly to the social sphere of life, through information technology. ok. But how about, instead of alienation from the means to sustain life, you are ALSO alienated from the means to END life. How about, you are also alienated from Death. How about, not only can neo-liberalism not account for valor and sacrifice and all kinds of cool trad things, but, on a very basic level it cannot account for the concept of Death. How about, you don’t believe in death. How about, “death” doesn’t make sense to you, so the concept of being alive doesn’t make sense to you, due to the way the human mind and language works. How about, you don’t understand the image of Christ overcoming Death, because you don’t even believe that you are alive in the first place.
The problem isn’t that late liberalism/neo-modernity doesn't “understand” a desire to prove yourself; you can easily write an account of how you are “climbing status hierarchies” by dying in war, because you are “evolutionarily making a gamble” and write out a whole truth table about how Storming Normandy is actually the logical decision if you want to get pussy some day.
The problem is that it cannot account for the concept of death, and I take trench warfare to be the exemplar of this, my proof of this. Something broke in the world in a profound sense in 1914-1920. Industrial society ended in 1920. The bloodbath and industrial scale slaughter of human beings, was simply too much to accept, a cultural trauma, and ever since we have, culturally, as a species, socially, been doing the equivalent of putting our fingers in our ears and going “LALALALALA CANT HEAR YOU DIDNT HAPPEN”, to the point that we have refused the validity of the concept of life and death. Absolutely schizophrenic, Universal Human Cotard's Delusion 2021.
This is what I refer to, when I talk about a “cultural shell-shock” from ww1. I believe everyone who lived through the period, whether they participated in the front line warfare or not, saw the apocalypse. I believe it quite literally drove them insane. And I believe that everyone born since then has inherited that insanity.
The dissolution of the family? Centralisation of state power, state monopoly on violence? Processes that were already underway through economical incentives before, but, made unavoidable, by this insanity. We can burn all television sets and radios and servers all we want, we could breed and raise a generation in the forest living on subsistence farming in small tight nit communities, and they would still grow up alienated. Because we have the blood curse in us biologically and socially, and we reproduce it biologically and socially. There can be no RETVRN until we re-initiate ourselves, on a species level, with Death.
I believe the “male suicide” meme are men trying to do their part in solving this problem, instinctually. I think killing yourself because you’re miserable is the storming Normandy of today - specifically it is the psychological “returning to the scene of the crime” and “reconstructing the core trauma, to relive it, and engage with it in a safe/controlled environment”. You know, the whole meme about serial killers in police procedurals.
That being said I’m not making a case for it. It’s misguided and pointless, and like the serial killer metaphor, it’s masturbatory and static, not transformative and productive. It’s not storming Normandy, it’s more like, storming some bullshit island in the middle of the pacific of zero strategic value to the war effort. It doesn’t help anyone. You’re just nuts about the blood curse we’re all born into. But don’t worry about it, we’re figuring it out. It’s all coming out now.
This is what I mean with term I coined: “the death of death”. It has many complications and many philosophical consequences. It’s everywhere in modern society, right underneath the surface – because, I think the surface was stretched thin in a desperate attempt to cover it up. Why consumer society function? Why people fall for it? It’s such an obvious con. Answer: because they were desperate to have something, anything, occupy their mind, time, life, to not have to think about, look at, compartmentalise, the social, metaphysical, moral and religious implications of, trench warfare.
It’s not a case of calling it a Freudian repression. Other way around. The concept of repression and everything Freud ever did, was itself an expression of this. The concept of repression was inspired by the growing social phenomena of alienation that was growing in the last half of the 19th century, and manifested, flowing over, crystallized, exploded, reached critical mass, in – you guessed it – trench warfare.
When I call the last 100 years “shell shocked” I do not call them “repressed”. I call Freud a war criminal for pre-emptively using the industrial means of warfare on the civilian population, in peacetime.
What is necessary is to account for death. To answer the question, “why would you storm Normandy, what are you, stupid? You don’t even get to cum that way”. BUT WITHOUT turning to cop-out truth table bullshit about how “it’s an optimised gamble to potentially cum in the future at some point, maybe”. That’s retarded reaching and begging the question, and is useless and unsatisfactory. There is not a single evolutionary biologist or evolutionary psychologist alive today I could not beat in a fight and rip their dick off and bite them to death. Which by their own standards means that they should shut the fuck up.
Without having to LARP as samurai, in a tradition we do not even have access to. Even the one’s that do have access to the tradition, fail. Also without literally killing ourselves to find out what’s on the other side. Without killing hundreds of people to try to find the door on this side, dooming our souls in the process.
Nihilism is taking life literally, but not seriously. It all starts by taking death seriously. Sentience is death-awareness, and in moments when you are very close to death, you are very, very sentient. Over-socialisation is the process of having to constantly, actively suppress your own death-awareness, of having too much death, too close. Putting your fingers in your ears and going “lalala”.
In practical terms what I advice, when you are at a funeral, and you are very “close” to death, you should take it seriously, and pray for your lousy pathetic excuse for a soul. Do not try to run away from it. Do not try to make snide quips. Don’t try to defuse the situation with “humor”. Don’t try to be the funny character in a tv show. MOURN. Weep. Tremble.
What is necessary is to account for death. You’ve heard about the devil’s advocate, well, how about this: God’s accountant. How do you like this.
Last week I was talking to a friend of a friend, who had just come home from spreading her grandmother’s ashes on the beach. She had been chosen to do the honors. When she did, she tells me, she was thinking about the movie “The Big Lebowsky” and not about her grandmother.