Preparing for Ragnarök
The noted blogger Fjordman is filing this report via Gates of Vienna.
For a complete Fjordman blogography, see The Fjordman Files. There is also a multi-index listing here.
Predicting the future is a difficult exercise.
The City of God was written by Augustine of Hippo soon after the city of Rome was sacked by the Visigoths in AD 410. This shocked him and his contemporaries, yet he apparently did not understand that he was watching the death of an entire civilization. Augustine himself died while the Vandals were about to sack his city.
The Scottish economist Adam Smith published his The Wealth of Nations in 1776 during the early stages of the Industrial Revolution in Britain, yet he did not see this world-historical transformation coming. Augustine and Smith were both very smart men, but even they could not foresee the near future or understand the full force of changes that was underway in their own lifetimes. Individuals who were much cleverer than I have been spectacularly wrong about the future. There is a very substantial risk that I will make the same mistake now, but I’ll try.
I have increasingly come to suspect that Western civilization is not merely under threat, but that it is in fact already dead. It probably died many years ago; we just didn’t notice at the time. The West is currently in such an advanced state of decline that a collapse of sorts can no longer be avoided. The established momentum is too great, and the ruling oligarchs are not even trying to hit the brakes. A collapse will happen. It is only a question of how we deal with this, and whether we manage to carve out a good-sized homeland for our people afterwards.
I believe that the European Union will disintegrate within the coming generation, that the USA in its present form will not survive his century and that we will be facing a full structural, political, ideological and economic crisis within the coming generation followed by serious social and ethnic strife. While the twentieth century was the bloodiest century in human history so far, I fear that the twenty-first century will eventually surpass it, if for no other reason than the world is much more populous than it was in 1914 or 1939.
As Jacques Barzun, the French-born American teacher, author and historian of ideas, puts it in From Dawn to Decadence, “How a revolution erupts from a commonplace event — tidal wave from a ripple — is cause for endless astonishment. Neither Luther in 1517 nor the men who gathered at Versailles in 1789 intended at first what they produced at last. Even less did the Russian Liberals who made the revolution of 1917 foresee what followed. All were as ignorant as everybody else of how much was about to be destroyed. Nor could they guess what feverish feelings, what strange behavior ensue when revolution, great or short-lived, is in the air.” Mr. Barzun also reminds us that “When people accept futility and the absurd as normal, the culture is decadent. The term is not a slur; it is a technical label. A decadent culture offers opportunities chiefly to the satirist.” The West today is clearly decadent.
The Russian-born author Alexander Boot was a philology graduate of Moscow University under the Communist system during the Cold War and lectured on English and American literature before getting into trouble with the KGB, the secret police of the Soviet Union. He emigrated to the West in 1973, only to discover that the West he admired and was seeking no longer existed. This inspired a life-long quest for an explanation, some of it detailed in his book How the West Was Lost. He sees Western history as a prolonged internal struggle between two different beings which he calls Modman and Westman. Saint Paul was a Greco-Roman Christian and the first Westman. Modman saw himself as close to divine; Jesus Christ, God as man, had been replaced by Modman as God, but the old God had to die first.
He believes that non-European immigrants serve as a protected class used as a battering ram by the ruling elites to systematically smash and demolish the nation-states of the white West. Laws against “racism” are therefore not meant to punish criminal acts, but rather to intimidate any opposition among Europeans by always keeping whites fearful and mentally on the defensive. “They are on the books to reassert the power of the state to control not just the citizens’ actions but, more important, their thoughts.” Boot warns that “A state capable of prosecuting one person for his thoughts is equally capable of prosecuting thousands, and will predictably do so when it has consolidated its power enough to get away with any outrage.” For this reason, the author predicts that “more and more people in Western Europe and North America will be sent to prison not for something they have done, but for something they have said.”
Alexander Boot’s basic conclusion is that the West is dead, but as a Christian man he believes in resurrection and in the possibility of a life after death. Perhaps that is not a bad summary.
According to the French writer Guillaume Faye, for the first time humanity as a whole is threatened by a cataclysmic crisis that is likely to begin in the decade before 2020 — a crisis provoked by degradation of the ecosystems and geopolitical contests for scarce resources like agricultural land, oil, and above all water; by the fragility of an international economic order based on speculation and the massive indebtedness of democratic states; by the return of epidemics; by the rise of terrorism and nuclear proliferation; by the growing aggressiveness of Islam’s world offensive; and by the dramatic ageing of European populations, whose below replacement-level birth rates are confronted with rapidly growing masses of young people in the dysfunctional countries of the global South, coupled with mass migrations to the North.
This convergence of catastrophes will mark the transition from one era to another. The USA will most likely cease to be the leading world power by mid-century, perhaps cease to exist at all in its present form. The global center of power will then move back to Eurasia, where it has almost always been previously. The strongest power will probably be China or what Faye calls “Euro-Siberia” — a federated alliance between the peoples of Europe plus Russia. He doesn’t think this is literally the end of the world, merely the end of the world as we know it. Something new may arise from these events, since Europe is a civilization of metamorphosis.
Faye predicts two possibilities for European civilization over the coming century: regeneration based on a resurgence of ancestral values, or else disappearance. Europe, especially the western half of the Continent, is currently being invaded. This is coupled with an incredible masochism on the part of Europeans themselves. Only a terrifying crisis can awaken them, and war is the most merciless of selective forces; a people that abandons its will to power inevitably perishes. A “mental AIDS,” a virus of nihilism, has severely weakened their natural defenses. Consequently, Europeans have succumbed to self-extinction. The primary symptom of this is “xenophilia,” a systematic preference for the Other over the Self.
The current advanced state of decadence owes much to the secularization of Christian charity and its modern egalitarian offshoot, human rights. In the widest possible sense it was the same civilizational genius that gave the world the concepts of universal gravitation and universal human rights. After the unprecedented successes of the Scientific Revolution, post-Enlightenment Europeans fell so much in love with the power of their own ideas that they ultimately came to define their very existence as one big idea, hence the concept of an “idea nation” or “proposition nation” was born. The leaders of this were the Americans and the French, whose Revolutions in the late 1700s came to view their countries as universal republics. This ideal was not and could not be implemented at that time, but two centuries later, coupled with the rise of global communications, it won out over ethnic identification.
Faye believes that Europe now faces a danger unparalleled in its history and refuses to see it. It has been colonized by peoples from the South. This non-European invasion began in the 1960s and was largely self-engendered, by politicians contaminated with Marxist ideas, by an employer class greedy for cheap labor, and by Utopian humanitarian ideals or misplaced post-colonial guilt. Illegal immigrants/foreign colonizers are very rarely repatriated, but receive lavish social welfare benefits handed out to them by anti-white forces in control of the state:
A race war is foreseeable now in several European countries, a subterranean war that will be far more destructive than ‘terrorism.’ The White population is being displaced, a sort of genocide is being carried out against it with the complicity or the abstention of the ruling class, the media, and the politicians, for the ideology these collaborating elites uphold is infused with a pathological hatred of their own people and a morbid passion for miscegenation. The state’s utopian plan for ‘republican integration’ has nevertheless failed because it assumed peaceful coexistence between foreigners and natives, non-Whites and Whites, was possible in a single territory. Our rulers haven’t read Aristotle, who taught that no city can possibly be democratic and orderly if it isn’t ethnically homogeneous… European societies today are devolving into an unmanageable ethnic chaos.
He believes that a rebirth of European civilization in a different form is possible, but not inevitable. Whether or not this transformation takes place depends upon to what extent Europeans manage to restore healthy societies while drawing upon their historical memory, rather than having Islamic values imposed upon them. He thinks they should adopt a policy of Europe First. Others take care of their own problems, first and foremost. Whites must learn to do the same. It is their future existence that is under threat, not that of Africans or Pakistanis:
The twenty-first century will be a century of iron and storms. It will not resemble those harmonious futures predicted up to the 1970s. It will not be the global village prophesied by Marshall MacLuhan in 1966, or Bill Gates’ planetary network, or Francis Fukuyama’s end of history: a liberal global civilization directed by a universal state. It will be a century of competing peoples and ethnic identities. And paradoxically, the victorious peoples will be those that remain faithful to, or return to, ancestral values and realities — which are biological, cultural, ethical, social, and spiritual — and that at the same time will master technoscience. The twenty-first century will be the one in which European civilization, Promethean and tragic but eminently fragile, will undergo a metamorphosis or enter its irremediable twilight.
American political scientist Samuel P. Huntington’s Clash of Civilizations thesis from the 1990s has been accused of simplification, but he should be credited with placing the significance of ethno-cultural blocs on the radar of global politics. He is also right in pointing out that this era is characterized by a West with declining influence. The tectonic plates of global power are shifting. Future historians may label this age “the retreat of the Western world order.” The West is no longer strong enough to carry the rest of the world on its shoulders. We will face generations of turmoil until a new equilibrium is found. These massive changes and the perceived weakness of a civilization that has been dominant globally for centuries could very well ignite a new world war. Multiculturalism and the inability or unwillingness of Western nations to uphold their borders from foreign infiltration is viewed by others as an invitation for attack and a signal that the West is weak and ripe for conquest.
This century may well be dominated by a resurgence of ethno-cultural blocs. Europeans need to break with the “presentism” in which they are currently sunk and learn to see themselves again (as do many others) as a “long-living people,” bearers of a great past and hopefully a great future, too. The mental revolution needed to bring about this change in European attitudes is only possible through a gigantic crisis, a violent shock, which is already on its way. The present system is founded on a belief in miracles and a myth of indefinite progress. It is bound to collapse, but we should remember that history is open-ended and presents many unexpected twists and turns. Opportunities will arise. We need to be able to grasp them.
I’ve been trying to think centuries ahead about what is needed for European survival. The bottom line is: We need our own territories again, our own countries. History has shown us, for instance in Latin America or in parts of Central Asia, that once the European genetic percentage drops below a certain threshold, the resulting population neither looks nor acts like Europeans. Experience also tells us that if two or more different populations inhabit the same land, they will eventually mix. In combination, this means that the only way European civilization can flourish in the long run is if we have large territories specifically dedicated for people who are overwhelmingly of demographic European stock. In those cases where this has been lost it needs to be reestablished. Ideas matter, but culture primarily follows genes.
All nations around the world try to maintain their ethnicity. Only in white majority Western countries do the authorities wage a deliberate demographic and cultural war against the majority population. This is evil, and Europeans have every right to defend themselves against evil policies. Whites have shown the ability to create societies and social systems that transcend the narrow confines of clan, tribe and ethnic nepotism. This is in many ways a great character trait, but it can also be our Achilles’ heel if it is weaponized and turned against us. We must recognize that we are unusual, and that our values are far from universally shared.
White Westerners have given other peoples, including actively hostile tribes, the tools needed to multiply beyond their native capacity, the transportation needed to travel to our countries, the human rights legislation needed to settle here and the welfare states needed to exploit us.
This situation is intensified by the fact that globalization of communications and transportation, ironically to a large extent created by Western inventions, puts severe pressure on our nations in ways which were unthinkable a few generations ago. When the Christian Gospels were written down at the end of the first century AD, the population of the Roman Empire was perhaps 60 million people. This is less than the annual population growth in the early twenty-first century. In other words: The global population grows by more than another Roman Empire every single year. Our system wasn’t designed to cope with such numbers.
The various cultures and religions of the world have experienced time in different ways. We are most accustomed to a linear system deriving from the Judeo-Christian tradition, which sees a clear progression from the creation of the world through a long series of events to a last time, a Day of Judgment and an end to all history. Modern science also tends to start with a universe created at a specific point in time, the “Big Bang,” although its end is yet uncertain.
As Parkes states in Gods and Men — The Origins of Western Culture, “The most significant feature of the Jewish heritage, however, was its view of history. Other ancient peoples had believed in a golden age, but had always located it in the past at the beginning of time. Israel alone looked forward to a golden age in the future and interpreted history as a meaningful and progressive movement toward this Messianic consummation. Originating in tribalistic loyalty, and reflecting the determination of a weak people to retain its identity in spite of conquest and enslavement, the Messianic hope was given universal scope by the prophets and became the end toward which all earthly events were moving. In various manifestations, religious and secular, spiritual and materialistic, it became one of those dynamic social myths which give meaning and direction to human life and which have more influence on human action than any rational philosophy. Unless its importance is understood, the development not merely of the Jewish people but also of the whole Western world becomes unintelligible.”
Ragnarök (“Doom of the Gods” or “Judgment of the Powers”), the end of the world as we know it, will mean the death of the main god Odin and his son Thor. This is described in the Icelandic Völuspá (“Prophecy of the Seeress [Völva]”), the first poem of the Poetic Edda and one of our most important sources to Norse mythology, although it was written down in the Christian era. Odin will meet his end against the giant wolf Fenrir. Thor will fight against Jörmungandr (Mighty-snake), a giant sea creature known as the Midgard Serpent that bites itself on its own tail and surrounds the human world, called Midgard or the Middle Earth. Thor will fight heroically and vanquish the beast, but after walking nine steps he will fall dead from its venom. Yet after all this destruction and moral chaos has ended, a new world will arise from the sea. Some of the gods will survive, as will two humans who will then repeople the Earth.
While Ragnarök is the end of the world as we know it, it is not “the end of history” in the Judeo-Christian sense. A new world will arise from its ashes. Our goal should be to sow seeds that can grow into strong trees bearing fine fruits in the future. Whether this post-catastrophic culture — which will most likely have a different mythology and maybe a different concept of morality to go with it compared to what we have now — will be a revived version of Western civilization or an entirely new version of European civilization I do not know, but I tend to suspect the latter. It is hard to predict such things, but a crucial challenge will no doubt be to break with the mentality of “progress” towards “equality,” since a toxic combination of these two concepts is burying us under dangerous and biologically unsustainable egalitarian ideals.
The coming crash will at the very least lead to an ideological-political paradigm shift and the rise of a new mythology to replace the post-WWII “suicide paradigm” of misunderstood anti-Nazism and deranged altruism. At worst, the discontinuity will be so long and severe that what emerges on the other side will be a completely new civilization, another generation of European civilization, just like what emerged during the Middle Ages was a different civilization from that of Greco-Roman Antiquity. The transition between the first and second generations of European civilization took centuries. History generally moves faster now than it did back then, but I suspect such a transition will nevertheless take several generations.
How a new civilization would look like I do not know. Medieval Europeans used different elements of the Greco-Roman legacy creatively and added innovations on top of this. Generation Two of European civilization contained within itself aspects of Generation One, but also had elements of sharp discontinuity. This will probably be the case next time, too.
As Geoffrey Parker reminds us in The Cambridge History of Warfare, the overall aim of Western strategy “almost always remained the total defeat and destruction of the enemy, and this contrasted starkly with the military practice of many other societies.” He highlights the combination of technological innovation and discipline as key traits of the Western military tradition. It is not true that Europeans are particularly ethnocentric; if anything, it is the total lack of ethnocentrism that constitutes our greatest problem today. However, it is true that in addition to being great explorers, artists and scientists we have also been great warriors when circumstances have called for this. This particular cultural trait is, admittedly, very well hidden in our age of decadence, betrayal and suicidal tolerance, but it can be brought back.
We will most likely enter a prolonged period of great turbulence and upheaval; the bubble of welfare state “cradle-to grave security” is about to burst. This process will be painful, but necessary, and is in any case more or less inevitable by now. In 1911 Western Europeans still ruled much of the world. In 2011 we don’t even rule the suburbs in our own major cities, and some learned observers seriously predict the end of European civilization altogether.
This also implies that for the first time in centuries we are the underdogs. There are many historical examples, from the Persian invasions of ancient times to the Muslim invasions later, where Europeans have performed at our best when we have been the underdogs. Perhaps we can do the same once the Multicultural madness retreats. We need to make sure, though, that those who have championed the toxic ideas of Multiculturalism and mass immigration of alien tribes disappear with it. If that happens, we can give our descendants a fresh start and lay the foundations for a new Renaissance, where European civilization can flourish once more.