I’ve repeatedly said that while “mundane” people are apt to indulge themselves in comforting myths, the magician can afford no such luxury. The serious magician has no choice but to be “Red-Pilled” if he wishes to keep his sanity.
“The magus must hence be impassible, sober and chaste, disinterested, impenetrable, and inaccessible to any kind of prejudice or terror.”
– Eliphas Levi
The reason is that to a certain extent, all people create their own reality. At the very least, they put up walls that prevent reality from reaching them. This level of delusion varies from person to person, and such a person is considered “Blue Pill” (if you’ve seen The Matrix, you’ll get the reference). Yet the serious magician seeks to engage the fullness of Reality with all that implies and has to offer, both for good and for ill. If Sun Tzu 3:18 mattered in any context, this is as relevant as it gets.
Which brings us to the question: Do Any Lives Matter?
After a week of shootings, bombings, terrorist attacks, and even a military coup, this is a worthy question to ask. And the only correct answer is that what you say depends on your ideology.
A Christian will say “All Lives Matter” with his lips but (like all people) make exceptions in his brain. A Cultural Marxist will say “[Insert Group-of-the Week here] Lives Matter” with his lips and then make exceptions in his brain for members of said group who don’t subscribe to their agenda. Many Muslims in the Middle East will say “Muslim Lives Matter” with their lips but then make it clear that only their particular sect qualifies as “Muslim.” And so on ad infinitum.
If you noticed anything in the above paragraph, I hope you noticed the hypocrisy. I hope you noticed how everyone in that list said one thing with their mouth and then made exceptions with their brain. That’s not because Christians, Cultural Marxists, Muslims, Secular Humanists, Neopagans, or members of any other group are automatically bad people; it’s because the human brain is wired for same-group preference and strong distinctions between in-group and out-groups. It’s a fascinating piece of psychology that merits its own study. However it’s outside the point of this post so I’ll not be addressing it further here or in the comments.
The point of this post brings us back to the question: Do Any Lives Matter?
Now this is a “Christian Magic” site, so you’re probably expecting me to say “All Lives Matter” or some of that claptrap. Or since the occult community has a strongly Leftist bias, you may be expecting me to jump on the “Black Lives Matter” bandwagon. Or since I’m trying to sell you some books, you may expect me to say “All Lives Matter, but Christian and Magician Lives Matter More.”
None of the above. Because the answer is that in nature, No Lives Matter.
Let’s separate ourselves from Christian moral theory, modern SocJus discourse, and everything else for a few moments. Let’s take in some of that Red Pill goodness and just look around nature. Does the eagle’s life matter more than the field mouse’s, or the lion’s more than the antelope’s? Does the cat’s life matter more than the bird’s, or your own life more than the amoeba’s? No, no, no, and absolutely no.
I’m expecting an emotional response from some of you, because I just kicked in the shins of one of humanity’s most ancient and cherished beliefs: that life is somehow sacred. I respond coldly: the magical path allows no room for fables or delusions. If you dare to call yourself a magician, then it’s time to be a grown-up and drop the fairy tales.
“When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways.”
– 1 Corinthians 13:11
The idea that “all life is sacred” sprang from primitive man’s encounter with the truth that all life is energy. “All life is numinous” may be a better way to put it. And indeed all life is energy, and all individual manifestations of the life-force are likewise energetic; in fact the practice of blood sacrifice stems from this. Primitive man’s attempt to understand this energy and the world around him is what led to the interpretation that this energy is sacred, then to the belief in spirits, and gods, then intricate creation mythologies and finally full-blown religions of every sort. Yet ultimately the mere existence of this energy proves nothing of any of these other concepts. Doesn’t disprove it, either.
Of course, the idea of life being sacred helped to fill two other needs for our primitive ancestors: societal cohesion and sustainable food-getting and eventually gave rise to the British Enlightenment’s belief in the individual’s Natural Rights to “Life, Liberty, and Property.” Yet in the face of competition from other groups of primitive humans, the line of “all life is sacred” had to break somewhere. The breaking point became the in-group/out-group distinction hard-wired into human thinking: All life is sacred, but my group’s survival is more sacred than yours.
“Even the organization within which, as was previously supposed, the individuals treat each other as equal – it takes place in every healthy aristocracy – must itself, if it be a living and not a dying organization, do all that towards other bodies, which the individuals within it refrain from doing to each other.”
Note that the one thing I’m not doing is invoking religious dogma – Christian or otherwise – because organized religion came well after the founding of societies; these religions may or may not have had some roots in pre-existing tribal beliefs and some roots in observations of nature and human behavior, but I think we can all agree the earliest organized religions also helped serve the purposes of societal cohesion and societal control. Either way, the moment we say any life matters is the moment we make a subjective value-judgment with no foundation whatsoever in nature.
Go back to my example of predators and prey in nature. In nature, no lives matter. Period, full stop.
Yet if no lives matter, what’s there to prevent us from taking the lives of our friends, our families, or our fellow citizens? This is where the value judgment comes in.
The value judgment is also hard-wired into the human psyche, part of our moral compass to respect life in at least some of its forms; in fact any hunter can tell you it’s possible to respect the life-force in another being even as you’re taking it. To me, my life matters. My cats’ lives matter. My loved ones’ lives matter. My fellow citizens’ lives matter, regardless of race, religions, orientation, or any of that identity-politics nonsense. Your life matters too, so long as you’re not physically attacking me (if you do, then any pretense that your life matters goes out the window).
And ultimately that’s what it boils down to; the fact that “Any Life Matters” is nothing more than a judgment call with roots in the human conscience and not unto itself an objective fact. The magician, if he seeks to attain the virtues of discernment or detachment (the Third Joyful Mystery), must first gain the humility (First Joyful Mystery) to realize his opinions don’t take precedence over the real world. The rise of extremism – another form of blue-pilling – shows that such humility is in short supply these days. Such lack of humility and discernment are, again, luxuries the serious magician cannot hope to afford.