am not ashamed that my fairly amateur writing is found on some sordid corner of the internet. I mean look at the
company I keep—people interested in dreams, predictions, afterlives, aliens, Bigfoot, and whatever else they can conjure up during their nap-time.
In this sense we are all equal, everyone and no one at the same time, waging war with words, wit and wisdom, and not much else. It is entertainment,
my friend. If you are not entertained, what the hell are you doing here?
But we rarely admit that we are entertaining ourselves, maybe working, maybe killing time—perhaps even to the detriment of our social lives—and
have adopted a more hilarious and ironic attitude towards this anti-social behavior. We like to pretend we're being social.
Have you lived a life? I ask because I cannot tell whether what you know is derived from culture or youtube, experience or wikipedia, travel or
media. And then I wonder how much of the world can be experienced from a desk. If an internet intellectual and a chimpanzee are dropped in a
rainforest, who is more likely to survive? The smarter one.
This is the going rate. It is always those who spend the least time outside who try to tell us most about the outside world. Whether it is a priest in
some monastery, a mathematician at some desk, or a physicist in some lab, there are, for the most part, real walls between them and what they're
trying to capture. Like their scripture, their equations and their experiments, their eyes are focused on apparatus, contrivance and controlled
If you happen to observe the overall rhetoric of the internet by stepping back and looking at its artifact, you might find that it doesn’t paint a
consistent enough metaphor of the world we live in. I mean that by strictly participating in it, one could assume through the internet any number of
things about the world but when he finally steps outside into the brute facts he finds something completely different. For although one might think he
is gaining insight into the occurrences of the world and others with access to such a large store-house of information and anecdote, and that he is
socializing with other people, he has in fact not even left his room, has seen nothing but a screen, and has interacted with no one other than
This paradox however is quite consistent with the paradoxical, hypocritical and ironic nature of humankind. By stepping back and looking at the
concrete artifact of the internet without paradox and irony, observing its reality, we see people at their computers, usually alone, immersed in
various forms of media, rhetoric, and imagination. There is nothing wrong with this. Often enough though, we like to tell ourselves the internet is a
means to social interaction, a method of learning, or a community; but such a notion betrays itself as soon as it is asserted, and is actually a
euphemism for anti-social, anti-learning and anti-community, insofar as one cowers from the direct and immediate experience of the world into the
indirect and filtered experience of her own imagination.
Figuratively, we are interacting with others and learning about the world. Literally, we are not, and we sit wholly alone, aware of nothing else but
ourselves and the immediate setting. The very act of going inside, closing one's doors and windows, putting on headphones, and staring at a screen, is
more a retreat and resignation from the world and other people.
And if you have the mind, dear reader, observe further the ideologies being sold on the internet among the indignant masses—the neo-feminism and its
backlash the men’s rights movement, the ever-recurring God debate which has become en vogue once again as it once was with 19th century
intellectuals, and the various clusters of social justice warriors abound these days—one might be careful to carry a whac-a-mole stick for when
these dogmas rear their heads. These ideologies, despite being crystallized in purely rhetorical form, are built of exaggeration and embellishment,
with no care taken of any real reality. In fact, in observing how much of reality is left out of these ideologies, we might make a better decision
towards their veracity. In other words, go outside and try them on for size.
A dangerous principle comes to mind—whatever we are doing we are getting better at. We are getting better at exploiting our relationship with the
environment while at the same time hiding from it. What do I mean by this? By using the internet to satiate our curiosity, our relationships, and our
expression, we at the same time diminish them; when our curiosity, our relationships and expression is limited to the internet, we negate the most
intimate aspects of our relationships with the rest of the world through willful non-participation, through hiding. There is no better opiate of
decadence than one that allows us to be more and more decadent. One might ask herself, how much does one truly know about a person, a place or a thing
if he never comes into contact with them? I can answer that—very little. To say that we are at least gaining indirect knowledge of something is
somewhat true, but what we are gaining knowledge of is someone else's knowledge.
edit on 12-2-2015 by LesMisanthrope because: (no reason given)