Celebrations Of The Winter Solstice Through Cultures & Time

Myth bares a indelible connection to the changing of the seasons and the modulation of the land they harbing. Hercules contestation with the Hydra (a multi-headed water monster) in ancient Greece bares parallels to the struggles of Greecian water managers and their multi-faceted (ie. multi-headed) irrigation systems. The snake-god Apophis (Apep) who clashed every morning with Ra as he rode his resplendent barque across the sky, was slain at the beginning of the Nile flood season, but was immortal and eternally recurring (just like the interplay between dry and flooding seasons). The indo-European god Indra (Devendra) defeated the water-serpent Vrtra (which draws its roots in the word wrto/eh, meaning, ‘enclosure’) a victory which corresponds to the release of mighty floods; the beginning of monsoon season.

As with the Greeks, Indo-Europeans and Egyptians, so to with our modern holiday celebrations, chief among which is Christmas, which is, of course, connected to the Winter Solstice; the death of winter and the birth of spring; a renewal of life.

Origins of Christmas

Ritualized celebration of the Winter Solstice is an exceedingly ancient practice that can be traced back to the beginning of recorded history. Whilst many popular celebrations of the the solstice survive to this day, such as the Iranian Shab-e Yalda (a celebration of the triumph of Mithra), or the Chinese Dong Zhi (a celebration of the increase in positive energy concurrent with longer days), the Japanese Toji (practice intended to start the new year with good health and luck), or the Hopi rite of Soyal (night long festival of dancing and gift-giving, celebrating the solstice), none are as famous as the western practice of Christmas.

In modernistically recognizable form, Christmas can be traced back to the establishment of December 25th celebration of the Invincible Sun, Dies Natali Invictus (birthday of the unconquered) or Dies Natalis Solis Invicti (birthday of Sol Invictus), by the roman emperor, Aurelian in the 3rd century. Later, in 273. It was not, as might be thought a solstice celebration, but rather a religious ceremony. The Christian Church selected Aurelian’s date as the official birth of Jesus (which was also the birthday of Mithras) and by 336 the solar celebration was Christianized, with Christ having supplanted The Invincible Sun, as the singular focus of the event. The debt to the ancient cult of the sun has continued ever since. Will Durant, in his The Story of Civilization wrote, “Christianity was the last great creation of the ancient Pagan world.”

The Yule Log

The ancient nords annually burnt a great log in honor of the god, Thor. Upon coming into contact with Christians, the practice was adopted and syncretically incorporated into the broader framework of celebration.

The Tree

The fixture of the ‘Christmas tree’ is part of a broader meta-cultural phenomenon which is often expressed through a ‘tree of life’ or ‘tree of the world’ (such as the Eagle-Serpent Tree described in the Myth of Etana or Yggdrasil which also features serpent-eagle motifs) which acts as a nexus for mythological narrative within which are generally metaphors concerning diametrically opposing qualities (such as snake and eagle, land and sky, good and evil, the seen and the hidden, etc). Trees were central to ancient peoples for their fires, their lodgings and shade after a long days toil; additionally, the greening of trees after the passing of winter signaled a great revitalization, the conquest of life over the frigid reign of death, so it is understandable why trees have always been so central to celebrations and rites related to the Winter Solstice (and it is likely that man-made habitation will take up a similar position in the far off future; for example, it may be the space ship which is venerated by exomoon colonies, as the vessel of life). In The Book of Christmas Folklore, Coffin writes of the history of the practice: “Most people have heard that the Christmas tree originates in the tannenbaum and is some sort of vestige of Teutonic vegetation worship. THIS IS PARTIALLY TRUE. However, the custom of using pine and other evergreens ceremonially was well established at the ROMAN SATURNALIA, even earlier in Egypt” (p. 209).

Santa Claus

One of the most iconic of mythological figures associated with contemporary Christmas celebrations is Santa Claus, a fat, bespectacled jolly man possessed of magical powers who travels the word, sliding down the chimney of innumerable homes to give gifts to the deserving. This belief can be traced back to the norse goddess Hertha, who would appear in one’s fireplace to grant good luck. The practice of leaving gifts underneath the tree are also nordic, as Odin would leave gift beneath evergreens during Yuletide, a tree considered sacred due its association with the deity. Tony van Renterghem in his When Santa Was a Shaman, writes:

“In newly Christianized areas where the pagan Celtic and Germanic cults remained strong, legends of the god Wodan were blended with those of various Christian saints; Saint Nicholas was one of these. There were Christian areas where Saint Nicholas ruled alone; in other locations, he was assisted by the pagan Dark Helper (the slave he had inherited from the pagan god Wodan). In other remote areas…ancient pockets of the Olde Religion controlled traditions. Here the Dark Helper ruled alone, sometimes in a most confusing manner, using the cover name of Saint Nicholas or ‘Klaus,’ without in any way changing his threatening, Herne/Pan, fur-clad appearance. (This was the figure later used by the artist Nast as the model for the early American Santa Claus)” (page 96).

Celebrations of the Future

In my own personal capacity, I should like to see the celebration of the Winter Solstice focused upon a veneration of the ingenious human industry which girds us from the rending chaos of frostbite and frigidity, of all that turns against dissolution and all that revitalizes our commitment to our fellows, in sonorous mirth and joyous creativity, as we contemplate the return of warmth and growth and plan endeavours for the Spring.

This season, if you should find yourself warm and well-stocked, thank the local architects and engineers, the electricians and designers who have, through the powers of their mind, created the magnanimous shell which girds you from near-certain death.


Sources & Resources for Further Reading

  1. David C. Pack. (undated) The True Origin of Christmas. RCG.
  2. HOIM Staff. (undated) The Shocking Pagan Origins of Christmas. Hope of Israel Ministries.
  3. Klaus Antoni & David Weiss. (2013) Sources of Mythology: Ancient & Contemporary Myths (Two-Faced Solstice Symbols & The World Tree). 7th Annual International Conference on Comparative Mythology.
  4. Patti Wigington. (2018) History of Yule. ThoughtCo.
  5. Patti Wigington. (2018) Yule Wassail Recipe & History. ThoughtCo.
  6. Sarah Pruitt. (2016) 8 Winter Solstice Celebrations Around The World. History.
  7. Stavanger Writer. (1997) Christmas In Norway. Stavanger-Web.

Swallow the Sun

Fermentation of Organon

Ra straddles the celestial-array like a colossus. Look how unhinged the old god has become! Intoxicated with the ostensible progression of his creation, he twines wildly about the horizon in spastic, shuddering bounds, caring not who is bathed in his fiery effulgence. The charred bones of his victims shine off the creaking charnel barge, its shimmering hull, once a beacon of hope, now a harbinger of terror. A lighthouse of despair. The shadow of the ship, blotting out the celestial rays meant to nourish the soil and water below, now frothing in a cascade of roiling disruption. Now the plants wither and a cold wind blows over the skulls of the dead. The brave viri lapis, those crafty escapees of the dread Sun Cult, hide in hollows, primitive huts and forgotten caverns, hunched, gaunt and feral of eye, ceaselessly conspiring against the hegemony of the great solar disk, knowing that should they emerge from their solitude they’d face the blazing rays of Ra’s fell light, which would burn any mortal man a’cinder. Nothing but a skeleton would remain, the only alcahest, screams lost to sky. His parts would be taken to the grand temple and there placed in immaculate assemblage, a offering to the all-seeing providence and a warning to the survivors that day-running was anathema. The only vector of escape was neath the breezy shade of the god-ship, too fleet for humanid velocity.

A most intolerable situation, but a intoleration which is exasperated by ingenuity and understanding, both qualities which have transformed the fallow ground of our innermost thoughts into fertile soil, rich with the oxygenating force of abundance which bred a thoughtless proclivity towards decadence and with decadence comes detachment. The industrial pioneer and rogue philosopher, Boyd Rice, wisely notes, “with detachment comes perspective. The less you care, the more you know, and the more you know the less you care.”1

Since ages immemorial Man as concept and Nature as concept have been considered two parts of a whole which make up something akin to “proper existence,” the “way of the world.” Yet by Man’s recognition of his placing therein he has – by, not just his consciousness, but recognition of his consciousness – of necessity, removed himself from any semblance of harmonic acquiescence. The only harmony is in struggle. In death. The forced forms which under-gird even our conscious minds. As McCarthy’s Judge Holden reminds us, War is God2. The clashing of one force against another with the ultimate result of one emerging supreme is the end result of entropy and the fueling fire of the universe and thus, nature. The topography of the universe is one of constant twining, collision, fold and explosion. The glaring heat of grand solar bodies, the black and airless vacuum of space, the eruption of volcanoes, deathly gyres of the hurricane and the disemboweling larvae of the ichneumon wasp do not portend a past of harmonic unity but rather a pitched-battle in which the very fabric of existence turns upon itself with horrifying and thoughtless intensity. Such vision; a stark contrast to the humanising conception of genderfication which is so characteristic of all too much of modern philosophy. The moon as nourishing mother, the sun as patriarchal overseer, the earth as Gaia and so on and so on. A conceptual anthropomorphic topographical overlay foisted without much forethought; a masking idea-layer which is born out of desire, the desire of significance and reciprocal emotional interplay. A balancing of co-dependent states. Make no mistake, this is not a question of pedantic quibbletry but rather a foundational concern for the entirety of humankind. One day the sun will move into it’s late-stage cycle, become a red giant and engulf the entirety of the earth. Long before the earth is swallowed up in Ra’s bountiful flames, every single speck of life will boil. Even should we escape that fate, the remains of the dying star will eventually burn out in totality and bring utter darkness to the entirety of the galaxy and send all hither-connected planets sailing off into the limitless void. Due these facts, we must hastily sever the umbilical cord which anchors us to the Mother Goddess, slaughtering her mercilessly if she resists, else suffer the fate of the dodo. Thus, nature as concept must be purged of imposed desire (if possible by thought, if not then by breed-engineering), for it is the generative machine of corrosive and leveling fantasy, for the anthro-primeval liminality of the shaman. The source of animistic fancy, sacred geometry and the pantheon of the gods – clamoring and gaudy -who rob Man of his upward drive, his trajectories of ascent, spiral and spread. A curious condition wherein the human animal thrusts his face into the muck and the mud and spits on his selfsame and filthy image for its grotesqueness as if no such other outcome were possible. This denaturing of hubris may, one day, itself become the nail which utterly seals us within the frigid and celestial coffin of galaxial extinction.

We must lay something out quite solidly here, that there can be no value nor trajectory of action which supersedes survival, firstly of the species, then of the race, then of various concentric groupings within, moving ever smaller until one reaches the bedrock of the individual. The “why?” is very simple, without the continuation of the organism there can be no value given the lack of a valuer. More importantly is the “to us,” should there be other variations of self-aware lifeforms – deities or aliens or some consciousness embedded into the very architectuality of matter itself – matters not to the purposes of all that matters to us. Away with all your cry’s of “anthropocentrism” if one is care one MUST care, principally, about things which CAN CARE. Who among this passage’s readership is like to sacrifice his life for a river or a stone? Or even a insect?

He who believes that there are no values outside of survival itself is imminently superior to the man who holds all values save for survival itself, for as he perishes, so too shall those values perish and even should his genes survive, in the form of his immortal clones, his children and their own, how many of them will assimilate their progenitor’s suicidal tendencies?

Nearly all the profligate religions of the world hold fast to the importance of survival; there is always some essence, typically a soul, which survives the death of the body, which transcends and escapes off from the physical realm into some kind of afterlife or ultra-dimensional flux (and numerous injunctions against suicide to mitigate the temptation to depart from the port of temporality earlier than was scheduled). However, for these star-seekers, this soul-escape is conceived of as part and parcel of “the natural.” Yet the natural as line-of-desired-action prepossesses the “unnatural,” a fundamental quandary for which there are no objective answers and no logically accessible subjective answers either; only the vagaries of intuitions (a unreliable metric). For if all that is known is “the natural” world, then that which is “unnatural” is unknown by definition. One here then becomes trapped in a glue of useless pedantry-become-moralizing; “We cannot do that, it is unnatural!” Rarely is the question asked, “But is it bad?” A prohibition without justification is justification for further prohibition. When coupled with afterlifeism this prohibition without justification is intensified for in breaking with it, one threatens one’s very immortality, that is to say, one’s survival (whether corporeal or incorporeal, it is continuance of the being all the same). No matter how much the holy man may detest materiality he still feels the compulsive urge to survive, so much so that he codifies them in his sacred tomes. Never mind the how and why. It just “is.” The naturalists ever conflate “the good” with “the natural” yet they are irrelevant distinctions to those without heads. If the dead are terribly concerned with “the natural,” or “the good,” “the gods,” or some other such anthropomorphic imposition upon the clockwork of the cosmos they haven’t been particularly vocal about it. Furthermore, the lines of desired trajectory which are extrapolated by misbegotten exegesis from the extant world are utterly inapplicable to the forces which under-gird the world itself. That is to say that if the natural be the good then the uninterrupted motion of matter is also good but no one takes up in defense of the leptons which make up the stones. Here we find a conception which has gone largely unexamined, if the more a thing proceeds upon “its own line” of entropy is greater in its “goodness” than a thing which is disrupted by a conscious agent one is implicitly placing entropy as the good. The “natural good” then is really just a mask for the worship of disorder, the acceptance of entropy. This is platonic insanity, the realm of forms invading the mental fortress and tearing it apart from within. Instead of withstanding the slings and arrows of the invading hordes of phenomonology, we’ve opened up the gates to the barbarians! The conception-outside-the-conciever now becomes like a ontological compression module which refuses to assimilate any and all new discoveries and theories. A reactionary idol worshiped by those who are infected with the incorrigible disease of sentimentality and “history.”

The reactionary3 proclivity towards the conception-outside-the-conciever presents innumerable intellectual problems, the first and foremost being that it’s myraid claims are wholly unfalsifiable. It is Quantum theory without the methodological verifiability. It is not just that reactionary transcendentalism is barren of verifiability, it lacks even a path to move towards it. To address those who would here enjoin, “There is more to life than logical and falsifiability!” Certainly, we would agree, but if one is building a ontological-organon then it its preferable that it be falsifiable, provided one’s principal concern is survival, in whatever variation.

One can already hear the obnoxious screeches of “Nihilism.” Let us address this as we bring our ideas to their logical conclusion. “Nihilism” is best summarized by Brassier when, in Nihil Unbound, he described nihilism as the belief that, “existence is worthless.”4 Brassier states that this is a “naive” conception which has become “hackneyed” and we would agree. Nihilism would best be described as the belief that the universe does not care about you; the fundamental mistake was in anthropomorphizing the universe to such a degree to begin with. Perhaps it was unavoidable but it certainly is not now. Agents and objects, humans and stars. Another crucial problem plaguing “philosophy” is the idea that nihilism is a thing to be overcome, as if a erroneous induction can be conquered like a foreign kingdom! Who can subdue a ghost or wrangle a kheft? The solution to the Ding an sich is not ontological cop-outs via flowery and obscurantist prose but rather, The Machine. Where sense-perception fails better senses are required and sense perception IS required for the perception of consciousness. Creation here suggests itself. Viri lapis must become et ferro to conquer the sun, to build up the bulwark against its searing rays. Woodwork to clockwork, man-power to machine-power in a hundred thousand variations. A skittering sprawl of thoughts crystallizing across Ra’s domain, subsuming and subverting it, for never forget, Ra deigns your death. Best to kill him first. Shorn of Set, he is powerless before Apophis.

For the good of our species we must swallow the sun.



Footnotes

1Boyd Rice, NO (Createspace Independent Publishing Platform, 2017)

2Cormac McCarthy, Blood Meridian (Vintage Publishing) Chapter XVII

3Reactionary here meaning, “Knee-jerk,” or “A action done without due thought or contemplation” not, specifically, the political tendency/philosophy(ies).

4Ray Brassier, Nihil Unbound (Palgrave Macmillan, 2007) Preface, x

New Mechanichism: Theorem-set 1

The first installment of a new project wherein I shall be taking excerpts from my notebooks and social media which are concurrent with the general thought trajectory of this site and create of them a patchwork of sayings, axioms and notations interspersed with images that serve to further illuminate the themes contained therein. /1/7/18/


New Mechanichism

All foundational ontologies terminate in the abyss.

Form-towards-purpose breeds purpose of form.

Time is subordinate to entropy.

Thus, kill not time, but entropy.

To wit, the fly-jar must be shattered.

From the remains, a new mechanichism.

A open system for us alone to close.

Rescind the offering.

Thereat the gate of mars.

All is war when the mind is fire.

Willful form, there shaped by iyre.

At the gate of The Sun we offer up all temptation of loss, of body and of mind.

I entreat you to join me in murdering the stars.

Ra deigns your death. Best to kill him first. Shorn of Set, he is powerless before Apophis.

A glorious new sun rises through the rarefied air, borne aloft by the force of our wills alone. A sun which will bathe the ignorant in its glorious effulgence and weld the wicked steel of the world into a grand, new machine.


General-thought-towards-action

Where a particular ideology originated in time says nothing whatsoever of it’s worth or applicability.

Quality over quantity generally produces works of integrity. Quantity over quality generally produces works of concession.

Oh, course you should attack someone because of their beliefs if their beliefs are sufficiently lacking in coherence or practicability or moral soundness or any other qualities which some body agrees upon as important. To refrain from attack in such a position is cowardice.

Half-measures are the death of purpose.

No decline is “irreversible” provided sufficient political will.


Of America

I’ve heard many explanations posited for America’s descent into madness. Chief among them, I would posit, is a total lack of conceptual clarity. This troublesome tendency for words and phrases to be allowed near-infinite malleability within everbrisker periods of time. Liminality.

A good rule for American foreign aggression: Ensure that country or non-governmental organization which we are engaging has declared war upon us or a true ally first. It really isn’t very complicated.

“Racism” “Family values” “anti-semitism” “feminism” “Americanism” All have become vagaries. Oh yes, there is the “dictionary definition” but when near to no one adheres to it, the potency of such a statement is nullified. That is to say, a untenable language game, for a game has, of necessity, rules, else it is no such thing.

The panopticon is not a system of arms but a system of minds. A prison for zombies, fashioned by ghosts.

Hard hearts are required. Color revolutions in Iran are not.

In 1955, the conservative American icon William F. Buckley wrote that the project of his paper, National Review, was to, “Stand athwart history, yelling, ‘STOP!’” We shall stand athwart history, yelling, “Catch up!”

Old-Anatomy-Drawings-Head-Dissection


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First Precepts of the Et Ferro

The et ferro as quaesitor de tenebris ignis.

[-ς-∧-]

The willful ‘I’ of the mind first, then the body, then the world, then the universe and all beyond. Palindromic continuation. The ‘I’ in the ‘self’ is a manifestation of the totality of the mind which is the filter through which the central organism wherefrom the generative conceptions emerge which individuates itself from the totality of the holo which is the generative locus for those principals by which all other individuations there follow.

All subjective ontological regressions terminate in the abyss of unknowing, into the great void beyond all ken, into the “and then what?” The et ferro here asserts himself, realizing this, he works towards making of himself a glorious pyre which will burn up the amniotic null. Out of darkness, light and out of light, darkness. Darkness fostered by his own hand for the safeguarding of his prizes.

The et ferro is preeminently a creature of shade, a acolyte of Apophis – the world-encircler, o’er thrown by the father of Shu and Tefnut. He lies beneath unknowing, seeking to excavate from it the treasures waiting beyond the facility of all limits of perception.

The et ferro is not a esoteric self-construction, but a de-esoteric self-deconstruction who lays before him, in the starkest fashion, all the fundamental questions of life and its end without fear or hesitation.

  1. The Who-am? 
  2. The What-am? 
  3. The Why-am? 
  4. The Where? 
  5. The What-then-now-then?

All subsequent questions arising therefrom he tackles with likewise vigor. As much as can be given. By asking the question alone has he answered the first question and the fruits thereof yield answers to the second and the second to the third and the third to the fourth and the fourth to the fifth upon which new vistas present themselves. All points on the map inexorably interconnected, weaving themselves unto a holo within THE holo. Once the water has been drawn from the well of unknowning and oneself is known as a coherent self, the subject turns to all that it perceives as different therefrom and seeks to extinguish his quest for continued individuation as he realizes that there is no move beyond the holo there are only moves beyond sub-holos there contained. He finds himself trapped like a fly in some spider’s web; affixed to the whole of reality, unable to flee from it, to move beyond or above it and yet when despair strikes this is all that he wishes to do and thus, his despair is intensified a thousand-fold. Pleasure is fleeting but pain is omnipresent. He then makes a pact with pain. Plotting in the shadows to stab his tormentor through the heart. Why, after all, should one honor accords with tyrants? Contemplating the stockpiles he magnifies his desire for revenge. Within the halls of his memory palace he plots the murder of the stars and the violent overthrow of the sun, horrid sovereign of the sky. When he sleeps he dreams only of devouring the world entire.

To out-burn entropy itself is his highest aspiration. In the total consumption of heat-death he finds his solace.

[-∨-∅-∧-]


Ludwig Wittgenstein was once asked the question: “What is your aim in Philosophy?” He responded: “To show the fly the way out of the fly-bottle.”

The project of the et ferro is starkly different: He wishes to bend ‘the bottle’ to his will and set it afire and melt it whole if it does not.


To the question: Why et ferro? Because, one must be as iron to weather the fire.


[∃-∧]


6934d1e60411c6ed359cb95711bc8693

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