Sunday 11 January 2009

A Religious Rite for a Secular World

Totalitarianism, potentially has an edge.
Totalitarian societies can achieve things.

And this is why in dark times, people are driven to embrace them.

Our veiled tyranny, the INGSOC system of today fails to do that. The velvet glove approach works in keeping us down, but it doesn't actually make use of us- or make us feel that fulfilled.

The perversity of totalitarian systems is, when done properly, they manage to ruthlessly exploit the sentiments of those they subject.

Proof. Hitler turned Germany from a country on it's knees in to a Superpower.
Proof. The Second World surely crippled Russia more than Britain. Yet Britain lay down and died. Russia put the first man in space.

And I think a lot of it was, they knew how to press buttons. Get people to put in. Because they gave them something beyond the material. Communal acts of worship. Made them feel there WAS such a thing as society. Because they created occasions where EVERYONE emoted together.

The problem that our increasingly complex society faces is basically this. How to get free societies to work the way totalitarian ones can be made to work.

And basically, totalitarian societies work because they do one thing free societies DON'T do.

Because we look in horror at that display. But only because we KNOW where it led. and we miss the point. That what made the society strong, what blinded people to what it really, was that. The 'Sieg Heil'.

Because, inside, a part of us watches a clip like that and KNOWS we too would have shouted.
It's a powerful dynamic being able to harnass people into something like that.

And it's something very powerful. I think we all feel it, but males especially. That's why we love football. It's the co-ordinated chanting, the fact your own voice subsumes into the crowd, one giant roar. Any football fan will tell you, you CANNOT heighten your emotions further than that. And nothing else can bring that. Co-ordinated subsuming of individual identity into a larger whole brings out emotions that transcend individual experience. The power of the mass ritual.

The totalitarian systems worked, because they harnessed a dynamic 'free' society chooses to ignore. And- here's the oddity- free people choose to express their freedom so often, by seeking out that very dynamic.

Societies without shared rituals that are all inclusive, must ultimately fail. Societies which do not incorporate within their structure some way of bringing individuals together to share some kind of activity which literally worships their common identity, will not have the cohesion of one which does.

It's about belief. That's at the heart of any successful religion, or other unifying creed. And we do need unifying creeds. Because yes, we like to be individuals. But we also like to feel we belong. Actually, we want to feel there IS such a thing as society.

And I must say, I actually see in the Rave Scene, AN answer for the future. The answer a post-revolution, free society could use.

Because I look at a clip like the one below, and I really do see something truly amazing. An example of something seemingly outside the abilities of 'free' societies. Yet beautiful.
But I think if we actually had to BE a society like North Korea to achieve that, it would be a price too much to pay.

But I think a free society, post revolution, could do with a global rave every Friday night...

Everyone on Earth, after their week, worshipping the music, the freedom, being led by the DJs, the high priests of our religion of hedonism, humanity partying after another week well done.
Because I think that's pretty much how all of us 'hard clubbers' felt 'back in the day' (God, I can't believe I'm already referring to those days as 'back in the day').

An act of worship, appropriate to our age.

Yes, that should be what we all do, post-revolution. Every Friday night. Party all night long. Worship Inner Monkey. Dance, make love to eachother, free our bodies, minds and souls, all in unison. And all along the music provides the ritualistic, orgiastic beat.

Yes, I like the idea of that. Just as in the Middles Ages, everyone in Christendom turned up to church for mass, I like the idea that in post-revolution Earth, every community provides a place of worship, a place where on Friday night, ten o'clock, local time everyone shows up, they'd no more miss it, than a medieval European would miss church.

Then eight hours of ritualistic hedonism. Eight hours of life affirming mental, physicical and spritual ecstasy- a new communion, humanity communing with eachother's minds and bodies, the religious rites of people freed from servitude, a genuine democratic religion, one without leaders and followers, just human beings expressing their solidarity, their unity, the right to enjoy the fruits of their labours.

And as each human being dances, as each human being feels the rush of the high, as each human frantically feels the physical release of bodily pleasure in the limbs of his fellow humans, that human being will be giving thanks. Thanks that the labours of humanity over the centuries have created a world where joy like this can freely be given and taken. Humanity have earned it.

Let humanity celebrate each Friday, the powerful spirit within humanity itself which has allowed for this world of joy and shameless pleasure to exist.

Worshipping Inner Monkey...


Anonymous said...

Mmmm... I dunno. I'm not big on crowds and screaming and chants, unless.... I don't suppose you could arrange for Freddie Mercury to make a weekly appearance? I'm sure he'd approve of all the hedonism. I could be up for that party.

Anonymous said...

Eeek! You would expect us to all stay up to 6 in the am! Raving every Friday night?! Crazy! Some of us have housework to do. ^_^ Some of us need our sleep ^_^

You do realise you would be progressively excluding people in older age groups also don’t you? Or is there no room for seniors in your brave new world?

I figure they could get one of those pill helpers and put the Es in the Friday compartment, maybe have the zimmer frame decorated with a paint job that fluoresces. ^_^

We do have things that do what you talk of on an annual basis. Remembrance day, red nose day, Pudsy, Christmas, New Year’s Eve. The Eurovision Song Contest .. only half tongue in cheek.

Anonymous said...

I think the power of totalitarianships is what frightens those of us who think about them. They are very powerful.

Anonymous said...

Charles is right.

Their power and more to the point that it might/would be used on us.

Anonymous said...

VR- I'm a crowds person. I prefer being around people. Preferably right at the centre.
I used to like to dance right in the centre of the stage.

I have a feeling Freddie might be hard to arrange...

Moggs- You can sleep on saturdays... That's what they're for.
Do you know, even now I never get out of bed before afternoon on a Saturday.

I don't see why it would exclude older people. OK, maybe they wouldn't be right in the thick of it, but they could join in the rest.

World Cup. I think World Cup time is a time we all bond together. I love world Cup.

Charles- Yes, but one likes to think that could be channelled into something positive.
Using the energy they misuse for something positive.

Moggs- They point is, to make a world without them :)

Anonymous said...

A world without what?

As I said about Saturday mornings. Some of us have stuff that needs getting on with.
I figure you would say that...

Personally I do not enjoy it. Don't expect me or lots of other people I know to get too excited about it.