The Great Choice of Men

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Every man is faced with a choice of pursuing happiness or freedom. This choice will govern his life for as long as he chooses to walk his chosen path, and if he made significant commitments along the way it may affect him after he decides to change paths. To avoid the consequences of ignorance, it is best for each man to set aside some time and to seriously ponder where he wants to go and how he wants to get there.

On Natural Slavery

Aristotle believed that some people were born to be slaves. His theory is reinforced by Benjamin Franklin’s quote, “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Ultimately, freedom does not equate to happiness. Most people cannot handle freedom, and having too much freedom can make people unhappy and yearn for more structure in their lives. This is because the burden of choice weighs too heavily on them and the accountability of making the wrong choice is a terrifying prospect. If freedom is what you desire, you must acknowledge that potential future unhappiness is entirely due to the freedoms of your own choices.

You cannot give others freedom, they must desire it and seek it for themselves. If they have expressed the desire to you, you can help them towards liberation, but it cannot be given freely. The truths you see are not evident to others who had not even contemplated the possibility of their existence before. The tragedy of the man who unknowingly becomes a natural slave is not yours to amend, he must first see his chains before you teach him how to break it. If you choose the path of freedom, you must understand that you will be entirely alone on this path for as long as you walk it. Freedom is not a natural thing to humans. We have evolved to be dependent on the tribe for survival, and to go astray from the prescribed path is to invite suspicion, jealously, and eventually being cast out from the tribe.

On False Happiness

If you can find what you truly want, you can find happiness, or at least contentment. Since happiness is such a fleeting emotion, you must be vigilant at all times of your own mind, as well as the influence of those around you. Be wary of trying to fool yourself into being happy, or trying to rationalize why you should be happy in the conditions you find yourself in. It is imperative that you define your ideal form of happiness, as letting others decide what it is will lead you down someone else’s path. Having material ideals for happiness is not an unreasonable goal, as it can lead you down productive and lucrative paths. Seeking wealth, fame, or a family are all noble aspirations in their own right, as are having abstract ideals for happiness, like peace of mind.

If your ideal form of happiness is dependent on other people, you must also come to terms with the truth that you will never find that ideal of happiness. Someone else’s path may intersect with yours or join to form a crossroads, but they will never merge as one. Nor should they, as that is the ultimate sacrifice of freedom, be it becoming a slave or taking one to achieve happiness. To continue down this path without considering this is to invite ruin. This truth does not negate the pursuit of happiness, but rather invites a man to contemplate what he truly desires.

On Finding the Balance

Happiness and freedom often conflict with each other, and it is each man’s challenge to deal with this eternal battle as best he can. To some, seeking and finding their ideals of happiness is a freedom from a life of meaningless. To others, being free to find your own path brings the greatest sense of happiness. The most important thing to remember is to avoid using one to achieve the other. Sacrificing your freedoms to pursue happiness will render those ideals useless, as you will have no agency over which to enjoy them. Likewise, sacrificing your physical or mental well-being over the pursuit of physical or intellectual freedom will only weaken yourself as you walk your path. You are at your strongest when you are as happy and as free as you are able to be each day. The balance will constantly shift as you strive towards your goals, and it is up to you to tip the scales back in your favor and restore the balance.

Escape Your Prison

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Every man, woman and child alive today or who have ever lived have at some point in their lives, oftentimes their entire lives, been subjected to an imprisonment of the mind, body or soul. Those who have escaped these prisons have found internal and external success in the form of fulfillment, fame, or fortune. Some who escaped did so with instinct alone, while others studied and learned from those who came before. By learning to harness both instinct and knowledge, any individual can attain any height of power they desire.

On Defining Prisons

The first step to escaping your prisons is defining them. There are three categories of prisons: self-imposed, cultural and societal. The most damaging and difficult to escape are self-imposed prisons. Examples of self-imposed prisons include bad habits, low self-esteem, low confidence, self-doubts, self-hatred, obsessions, addictions, fears, and ignorance. A self-imposed prison may include influence from the other types of prisons, cultural and societal, but it also includes your unique interpretations and the most powerful tool you have available: imagination. While a cultural or societal prison can show the negative affects for people trying to escape their prisons, your self-imposed prisons relies entirely on the imagined punishments you have conceived for yourself.

The second and most prevalent imprisonment are societal prisons. For better or worse, we all rely on the government to protect smaller communities within the larger community of the country you reside in. This protection brings laws and regulations, some we may not agree with but are forced to abide with the threat of violence and literal imprisonment. This natural imprisonment can be traced back to our species’ founding, with primitives being constricted to tribes for the sake of survival. This form of prison may be essential to survival, but it must be acknowledged as a confinement nonetheless. Defining all boundaries is essential when trying to overcome them.

The third type of prison are cultural prisons. These do not rely on physical imprisonment as societal prisons do, but rather social ostracization and ridicule to force conformity. Examples of cultural prisons include religion, marriage, careers, and political parties. All of these examples rely on criticism of those who are not part of that particular prison or who are critical of them. People who don’t follow a particular religion need to be saved, those who are not married will die alone, someone without a prestigious or lucrative career is unsuccessful, a person who is not of a particular political alignment is wrong, etc.

In summary, a self-imposed prison is one you place on yourself that utilizes your imagination against you to confine you, a societal prison relies on forceful physical imprisonment or violence to encourage you to conform, and a cultural prison relies on attacking a person’s image or reputation to shape you to its expectations.

On Planning Your Escape

Just as real escape artists can attest, the most important factor in escaping confinement is preparation. You must prepare for resistance and conflict when attempting to escape your prison. Plan for all scenarios and reflect on how much you are willing to sacrifice to escape. Without sacrifice, there can be no freedom because it is the catalyst for it. Use your time wisely as you plan and prepare your escape, because once you are aware of your prison it will eat at your consciousness and consume your thoughts.

On Fellow Inmates

Every person has their own form of imprisonment, but not every person wants to escape. For most people, their prisons have become a part of their personalities and identities. Without the restrictions, they would be unable to navigate the world that exists outside of it. To free them of their prisons would be to strip them of their persona, a cruel and unconstructive thing to do. Instead, provide advice and guidance for those actively aware of their cages and seeking to rid themselves of them. If a person cannot consciously recognize one of the prisons outlined here, they are not ready to escape it. Everyone must escape their own prisons, and doing it for them would take away from their journey as a person and dampen the freedom bestowed upon them.

Caution must be used when interacting with those protecting the prison you find yourself trying to escape. These people either benefit from the prison or are so deeply ingrained that they must defend it to survive. These traitorous inmates will slow you down on your path to freedom and try to deter you from your quest. They cannot be avoided and must be dealt with in a way that does not provoke them to a radical response, for there are far more inmates than free men and you will find yourself constantly outnumbered.

On Dreaming of Freedom

Once you have visualized your prisons, you can begin to visualize the freedom from those prisons. Envision this freedom everyday, dream of it, desire it with all your being. Imagine the benefits you will reap from the changes you can invoke in your life and realize the harm you will endure should you continue to be confined. Look to the people who escaped their prisons and study their success. Specifics can not be given by anyone but yourself, because only you know what prisons you currently reside in.

Do not pity yourself for being imprisoned for so long, knowingly or unknowingly. Do not pity others for being imprisoned or look down upon them for being content in their cells, because they are on a different path than you with its own challenges and tribulations. Taking action and making sacrifices is how you can repay the debt to your former self who resided in that prison.

On Failed Attempts

The punishment for a failed escape attempt pales in comparison to the regret and guilt of not trying. Relapses will occur in any self-imposed prison, be it the struggle against an addiction or the struggle of becoming more social or extroverted. By acknowledging that these things will likely happen, you can prepare yourself for the coming fight. Make no mistake, it is a fight and you will need to fight these self-imposed prisons with every fiber of your being.

A cultural prison, on the other hand, is a battle of defense. You must stay true to the path you have set for yourself, and defend that ideal from any and all who may attack it. Prepare to be attacked from all sides: friends, family, acquaintances, inspirations, successful, unsuccessful. No castle can withstand an eternal siege, and there will be times when your values and beliefs are shaken by the bombardment of conflicting ideologies. If you willingly open the gates to these invaders, make sure it is on your own accord and for the right reasons, not as a compromise.

A societal prison cannot be successfully escaped because it is inherent to human nature. A revolution may overturn a societal prison, but it is always replaced by the revolutionaries. Acknowledging that it is a prison, one of the body, is essential when seeking to expose and understand the more subtle prisons present in each of our lives.

On Enjoying Freedom

Once you have attained the freedom you desire, make a vow to never go back to the prison whence you came. You must always be aware of the chains that bound you and the burdens you lifted from yourself. Always keep an image of what your prison was like so that you can compare it to what your life is like with your newfound freedom. Take time to reflect on how you were imprisoned in the first place so that you are aware of future prisons that will try to restrict you.

Finally, take time to celebrate and rejoice in your success. If you have escaped a prison, no matter how small or insignificant you may deem it, you have done something most people are not capable of and have put yourself on the pedestal of great men and women of yore.

Understanding the Radical Left

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Every generation is defined by its struggles. Whether the generation endures through war, economic depression, or fighting for human rights, hardship and the prevailing over it is what tests a people and their values. By examining the struggle of the millennial generation, or the lack of real threats, we can understand their position and seek to find common grounds with them, no matter how unlikely that may seem.

On Their Hostility

The parents of the radical left millennials protested the Vietnam War and lived through the Cold War, two serious and world-altering events. While I would never protest the military and treat the returning veterans in the manner they did, the protests against government intervention and the draft were valid and reasonable. It was a time of shifting values and of real change. Love, sex and drugs were freely given and shared and narcissism was the prescribed response to the overwhelming sense of shame and guilt that hampered this generation when they compared themselves to their parents, the greatest generation.

After the Vietnam war, their parents lived under the shadow of global nuclear war during the Cold War. Fearing each day may be their last, they lost faith and abandoned religion and adopted a nihilistic approach that was dictated by the failings of mankind, government and their neighbors. Most people today don’t realize how close the world was to being plunged into a nuclear winter, and this ignorance will lead to the next Cold War.

The grandparents of the radical left millennials endured World War II and the Korean War. This generation was comprised of masculine men and feminine women with established gender roles to better serve their society and contribute to the war effort. The sense of honor with the men was prevalent among the Americans, British, French, Germans, Italians, and Japanese, and drove the men who could not fight to suicide. The sense of duty with the women spurred them to take up the blue collar jobs that the men abandoned when they left to fight. This generation suffered through the Great Depression before this world war, starving and without hope. They left the frying pan and flung themselves into the fire because they had the strength to do so from the hardships they endured.

The current radical left has no such enemy to fight, no such cause to protest. The world is almost as close to nuclear war as it was at the height of the Cold War, but that is not what they protest. The lack of an enemy to fight causes them to create an enemy to fight. Their predecessors fought real racial segregation, they fought for women’s rights that they did not have at the time, they fought to close a gender wage gap that did exist at the time. Now, all of these problems have been solved, leaving an entire generation with no hardship to overcome and no meaning to identify with. They have no war to fight between nations, so instead they wage a war of ideology.

This sense of inferiority when compared to past generations will stain the new generation. Their hostility arises out of the need to have an enemy to fight and their radicalism stems from the lack of a self-identified enemy. We have seen first hand the insanity that can possess a person who has lived without struggle and yearns for a greater purpose.

On Their Weak Arguments

Past generations had strong leaders no matter what side of a conflict or protest they found themselves on. American men fought real fascism and communism to protect democracy and capitalism. They had clear evidence of why they needed to fight, and strapped their boots on and got to work.

Now, the arguments for the weakest generation is given to them by people with ulterior motives through the education system and the media. They cannot think for themselves and form their own arguments because there is no clear enemy, no right and wrong that everyone around them can easily see. The single greatest failing of the new generation is the complete ignorance of history. If they don’t know the basic history of communism, fascism and feminism, how can they form a coherent argument against it or for it?

The form of corporatism that dominates the United States has spread its veiled tentacles to every sector of public and private life. The monopolies control the textbook content and dispersal, the lobbyists prevent education reform, and the teachers that have no concept of history or geopolitics spread their ignorance to their students, stunting their growth.

It should be absolutely alarming with the fact that this is the most literate generation, yet the most uninformed. Corporatism, or the globalists, or the elites, have realized that controlling information is how they can retain power over the population. They have realized that they cannot defeat the powers of democracy and our representative republic through direct conflict, and have instead opted to destroy us from within through an unimaginable national debt, a divided people with no values and a propensity for obesity, and the destruction of the ideas that the United States was founded upon.

I do not believe that all of these radical leftists are truly aware of what they are doing. The term ‘useful idiots’ has never been more appropriate than in our current political climate.

On Finding Common Ground

While you should avoid identifying as a victim with every fiber of your being, let us take a moment to be sympathetic to the new generation and realize their struggles that they do not often realize. They have been born into broken families, and those that don’t come from divorced parents and broken households saw both parents working full-time jobs. They have been steered away from any form of religion and ridiculed by their peers and the media if they are a part of an organized religion. Their innate masculine and feminine values have been reversed, inverted and mutilated beyond recognition. They spend their entire formative years and early adult life in an education system that does not educate, but indoctrinates, leaving them with useless knowledge, thoughts that are not their own and tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt and their best years wasted. They have abandoned marriage and the family in fear of the divorce that their parents and peers experienced.

For any man or woman of worth, these are hardships to be overcome. Unfortunately, these hardships are not recognized by the common culture we share, leaving this weaker generation to fend for themselves as individuals rather than for a collective good. Any attack on free speech, as seen too often in their protests, must be met with quick and effective retaliation. On other issues, however, we must show compassion and sympathy for our fellow countrymen. We should strive to see them prosper and succeed, for a rising tide lifts all boats.

If we cannot find common ground with the radical left, we must try and create it. Shift the focus away from topics that have been debunked time and time again, like the gender wage gap or gay rights, for these battles have already been won. Shift the focus to rebuilding the family, restoring the birth rate, reducing national and individual debt, preparing for the coming war with China, disarming nuclear weapons, unleashing alternative energy, regulating artificial intelligence, and combating global governance. All of these are topics that are of such significance and affect everyone that they can make the weakest generation into the most important and pivotal generation that has the potential to decide the course of mankind. We live in a time of nearly unlimited potential for both good and evil, and I hope to adequately address all of these topics and more in due time.

 

You have time

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To any person of credibility, be it an amateur philosopher, a rising businessman, or one with a craft that they are honing, time is the obstacle that will bar their progress throughout their journey. Most people have a fear of losing the time that they have left in their lives, while few respect the nature of time. By coming to terms with time and how we can better spend it, we can approach the world from a more established position of focus and with the intent to use our time to the best of our abilities.

On the Nature of Time

Time is the only resource that is involuntarily spent and cannot be replenished (as far as we know). Life itself can be restored in our time through the miracles of modern medicine, where a man can be declared dead one moment and revived the next, but time remains out of reach from the meddling of man. With this in mind, instead of fighting the passing of time and fearing its eventual end, perhaps we should come to understand how we can best spend the time that is given to us.

Time is as majestic as it is unknowable. No one can tell you when your time will come to an end with absolute certainty, so each and every one of us is faced with our own mystery to contend with. It is our own responsibility to manage our time, yet we often find ourselves delegating that management to others, people often less qualified to manage anything remotely as significant as our time.

To fear the passing of time is to live outside reality. By acknowledging your complete lack of control over the driving force in your life while simultaneously realizing you can have more control that you think, you can begin to repair the relationship with the cosmic forces at work beyond your comprehension.

On Wasting Time

To begin managing your time efficiently, you must set your priorities. Your craft should be your top priority, or at least among the top priorities in your life. Consider for a moment all of the ways a person can waste time, and then reflect on how many people you know who actively throw away the gift of life they have been given. Think of all the people at this very moment who are:

  • playing video games, from MMOs to modern consoles to outdated gaming machines
  • watching Netflix, Hulu, HBO Go, Youtube, television
  • browsing Facebook, Reddit, Instagram, Snapchat, 4chan
  • smoking, drinking, doing drugs
  • sleeping
  • texting
  • sitting in a classroom they don’t want to be in, doing homework
  • working at a menial, unsatisfying job
  • driving
  • eating
  • in prison
  • etc.

If we were to conduct a survey of all of the people worldwide partaking in those activities right now, it would be in the hundreds of millions. This is who you will be competing against. With a basic understanding and respect for the nature of time, you will quickly put yourself ahead of hundreds of millions in regards to being productive. That’s not to say that these activities can’t provide some merit, only that they should be taken in extreme moderation.

On Being Idle

Moderation is the key principle to consider when managing your time. Each of the activities listed above have positive and negative traits. Doing homework can instill a rigorous work ethic, but you were not placed on this earth to follow instructions and complete work that does not apply to everyday living. Playing video games while listening to an informative podcast can provide an outlet for relaxation while still remaining engaged, but it absorbs you to the point of doing nothing else.

I would argue that it is healthy to have one activity that constituents as a time waster, in that it provides no clear tangible product from your time investment. Every person in our history has had such an activity, from the ancient hermits of China like Tao Yuanming
who idly strolled through the countryside to Albert Einstein’s hiking trips.

On the Afterlife

Some may believe in a second life, some may believe in an eternal void, I would hope that all can reconcile the fact that this life is limited by time. If there is a heaven or some form of reincarnation, it still does not change that I only have so much time to do what I desire in this life, in this form. I have found two extremes in both parties, neither of which are comforting.

Some that believe in life beyond death are nonchalant in their time expenditures, often with a carefree expression and a reliance on their belief of unlimited time beyond the grave. This is as dangerous as it is sad, as no promise of salvation can erase the overwhelming sense of guilt of a life wasted.

The other extreme that some express is the futility of concerning oneself over time. Some that don’t believe in an afterlife take a cynical approach, that nothing matters because after death, there is nothing. This nihilistic thinking leads to self-destructive tendencies that can often be more harmful that the previously described naivety.

I do not follow an organized religion, and I don’t see myself ever following one, but I do consider myself to be very spiritual. Whether there is an afterlife or not, a form of afterlife is present in our world. The works of men and women long dead, from literature to architecture to songs, exist on this plane of existence after the creators have long since perished. A legacy can be created beyond flesh and blood that persists through the ages, withstanding the onslaught of time.

On Time Long Lost

Reflecting on all the time that has been wasted in one’s life is a powerful, anger-invoking experience. Try to be understanding with yourself and realize that those wasteful activities led you to where you are now. Perhaps you learned something from that video game or movie, or your creativity was unleashed from that museum you visited. No activity is ever a true waste of time because it provides another moment of sentience, but some activities are more useful than others. By realizing this, you can still partake in the lesser activities in moderation so that you may find true value in those that provide you with fulfillment. Soon you may see no need for the lesser activities, and will have reached a milestone in your life as you climb towards your apex.

On Productivity

With your goals in mind, you must embark on your journey of self-improvement. There is no room for half-measures here, as they are more dangerous than simply having no full-measures. Think of the obese woman who rides a bicycle to where she needs to be: she will use that small amount of exercise to justify her poor diet throughout the day, negating any benefits she may have reaped from her brief bout of activeness. This is a half-measure, and she would have been better off not riding the bicycle so that her poor diet negatively impacts her on a greater scale, either prompting her to take a full-measured response or to wallow in her self-pity, sparing us all the sight of her on a bicycle.

Once you see the fruits of your labor, you will become addicted to the pursuit of productivity. The most important part is to prepare for the plateau that every striving person reaches and to be able to push through this lapse in growth. This is arguably the toughest stage, and can be best overcome through moderation in productivity. Yes, easing off the pedal and reflecting and regrouping yourself to prepare for the next push. This sense of moderation should apply to everything in life to create a harmonious balance. It is a delicate balance indeed, as you can easily slip back into the time-wasting habits of yesterday, but you do not want to burn yourself out over the pursuit of your dreams.