by Culture and Anti Culture
Contemporary humanity is in the midst of many crises. At the heart of them all is the crisis in the inner life of the human being. In those with more sensitive faculties, this crisis can manifest itself as fear and despair, as terrible alienation.
We are writing for the consciously distressed–those who sense something is essentially absent in the post-modern world. The culture in which we live is no longer a true culture but rather an anti-culture, a caricature and parasite upon authentic human civilization.
What is happening when one senses vacancy, shallowness, absence of inner substance, a lack of depth in many people, especially in the American west? Why is it that people imbued with even the twilight enchantment of older cultures do not engender such feelings?
Authentic culture has richness, depth, warmth, power–the power to sustain the genuine life of the human soul. Authenticity is what is missing from post-modern, synthetic, calculated, un-spontaneous, manufactured and parasitic anti-culture. Anti-culture is all semblance, all surface without depth, without the qualitative element from which all true culture emerges and evolves.
Post-modern anti-culture is literally deader than a corpse–its manifestations are incapable of decay and dissipation.
Picture an infant, age about 2 years, alone in a conventionally furnished middle-class room sitting before a very large plasma screen television, a device displaying “high definition” images and accompanied by sounds from the latest speaker technology. The infant’s attention is captured by the vivid images and sound.
Two worlds, two modes of existence meet in this moment in the inner life of the infant. On the one hand is what has so far developed in the infant’s soul and organs of consciousness, preparing vast, latent potentialities for the development of the human personality, for good or ill; yet to be sculpted, forged and crystallized outof the interplay between child and world.
On the other hand are the intentions behind and effects of technology. While the child is fundamentally the outcome of natural forces, technology results from manipulation of the powers and products of nature –
a manipulation made possible by human thinking. Originating in the inner life of man, this thinking activity works outward upon the world and its creatures. Then, in manifold ways, the products and effects of technology work back upon this thinking and its source within, and in turn modify and shape this source. The concrete actuality of this world of technique cannot itself be directly beheld – it is broken up, dispersed, obscured. Legions of scientists and technicians, analysts, psychologists, neurobiologists, artists, craftsmen and mathematicians play their part in synthesizing this powerful addition to the world of the senses. A mighty army, whose human participants are isolated from one another, wields a body of effectively esoteric wisdom and magical devices, generating this world of appearances. To what end?
To market goods and services? To drive consumption? To entertain, placate, distract, inform, to seduce? To enslave?