641. The power of the great (XVIII)
Not to sound more schizo than I actually am, but Mother’s Day is a communist plot—no, really. Around the early 1900s, thanks to men like Ivy Lee (see, William S. Burroughs), PR really found its stride; hence every day of the year has several designations—International Coliotus Day, International Ringworm Day, National Pessary Month etc. Mother’s Day belongs among these inventions: it was developed by a suffragette and anti-war activist as a day to beg men not to fight anymore (in remembrance of the American Civil War). The British version, copied from the American, remains a little better because it moves the day to Mothering Sunday—a traditional church celebration. Still, the basic point is to foreground feminism, suffragism, and egalitarianism—to feed feminine narcissism, women yearn for “recognition”.
This decade “Father’s Day” has suddenly become “a thing”—just like holidays to Iceland to see the Northern Lights. I am labile as regards advertisement, I still use Old Spice because, about a decade ago, I was hypnotised into it by an advert that featured a funny black man who rode a horse self-consciously. Initially, I fell for the Father’s Day posters and bought my father a large Italian sausage on the appointed day. “It seemed appropriate,” I said. Yet “Father’s Day” is a nonsense, never have fathers been more disprivileged; the motivation to assign a day to celebrate them is not for commercial reasons—it is to associate masculinity with femininity. Men do not want recognition, they want respect—so a “day to recognise fathers” constitutes a means to feminise men.
What is a man? There is always a question over what it means to be a man because, unlike with women, a man’s role does not have such an obvious biological function in the contemporary world. A woman’s purpose is twofold: firstly, to have babies; secondly, to care for babies, the elderly, and the sick—and that is it; everyone knows what a woman is. With men it is a little more difficult: men have more possibilities and are less constrained by their inherent biological function—hence men create everything of interest in the world. At base, a man’s role is to be a hunter and warrior: to have an antagonist, whether man or beast, and to kill that antagonist.
However, in man’s state of perpetual war he has changed his environment so that the antagonist has become greatly abstracted—the programmer goes out to “hunt” to feed his wife, to beat other app developers; and yet the antagonism is so abstracted that it is hardly visible in his day-to-day activity—even soldiers might go a whole career without sighting the enemy (logistics is the core of modern war, he won the war by application of the latest just-in-time production methodologies to missile procurement).
Since men are competitive—antagonistic hunters—they also compete over what it means to be a man in an environment that has abstracted warriorship to a huge degree; hence contemporary questions over “What is a man?” reflect meta-masculinity; and so we have debates over whether it is “gay” to be bodybuilder, or to be an app developer, or to work on a ranch (but a tourist ranch, totally gay—not a real man, not a real cowboy). Yet you can tell that in the end it all comes down to warriorship—men remove life, women give life.
The exception is the shaman, the medicine man, because he is a spiritual hermaphrodite. The man who can care and kill is a shaman: the doctor is a shaman, “with the power of life and death, as with God”, and so their symbol is the Hermetic staff (the Hermetic knowledge to become as God) with a snake twined around it—the snake’s venom can heal or kill, in accord with amount. The “true shaman” also hunts and heals with magic: the magic-worker moves between two worlds—night and day, Sun and Moon—and in his precession highlights the inherent dimorphism between the sexes.