A Forsaken Future

But the present leads to nowhere, the past cannot be changed. A prayer for the broken shrine, a prayer for those estranged”—AB Frank

As I approach the latter years of adulthood and stare into incipient middle age, I am forced to reflect on the current state of my life. I am forced to reflect on all that has been lost and all that will never be. And although I make every effort to appreciate the positive, celebrate my accomplishments, and seize the day in order to effect change in the areas I can, I still find it increasingly more difficult to suppress the growing, unfathomable rage building inside me. A rage stoked by an ever expanding knowledge and awareness of what has been stolen from me. The future. The chance to build a family and live a purposeful and traditional life in accordance with nature and God. The chance to be a part of a strong, stable, and sane society reflective of my values. And the chance to proudly contribute to something greater than myself. That was all I ever really wanted. I never desired nor expected wealth and luxury, I never envisioned nor expected social perfection and utopia, and I never felt entitled to a certain outcome. The future I once envisioned was merely the opportunity, the chance, to try and live a simple life in a decent society. And it is exactly that which has been stolen.

Marcus Aurelius, in his stoic opus “Meditations”, described the present like an island standing amidst the infinite, chaotic abyss of time, between the departed past and an uncertain future. And in a very real sense, this outlook is absolutely true. The past has vanished forever and cannot be changed and the future is never promised, leaving us only with the present—an island in eternity. Therefore we must be appreciative of the present and cherish every moment we have, which are the only real moments we have power and control over. This is something I make a conscious effort to try and do, to live actively for the present while remaining grateful for my blessings. I do not believe in taking things for granted, especially precious moments of finite time. However, Marcus Aurelius also discussed the importance of not allowing one’s self to be negatively affected by outside events and fate, and to remain positive in one’s own thoughts and mindset. But perhaps in this I severely fail. Because this I cannot seem to do. I remain unable to silence the demons raging for a future that will never be.

Because we men are different than the other creatures of the Earth. We possess the self-awareness and intellect to comprehend the concepts of past, present, and future. Our understanding, and ultimately our appreciation, of time is not limited solely to the here and now. As men we understand that, although never guaranteed to us, we are still likely to see tomorrow. The probability is high that most men will live long enough to see some part of the future—in a limited sense of the idea. As such, we must plan for it and make decisions today that are likely to have favorable effects in the future. For as Marcus Aurelius wrote, “what we do today echoes in eternity.” So we, both as individuals and as society, possess the ability and need to be grounded in a sense of future orientation. As prudent individuals, we try to make wise choices and decisions which will then echo favorably in the future. We are willing to work and sacrifice today, and to avoid the constant temptations of laziness and instant gratification, in order to provide for distant times to come—even though we may never actually see them. We toil in the dirt and fields today, in order to reap the bounty of harvest tomorrow. As individual men, our understanding of time as a balance between seizing the present and planning for the future is imperative.

Society is no different. It too must be grounded in a sense of future orientation, while still seizing the present. But unlike the mortality of man, society possesses the ability to live on where the individual does not. Society, generally speaking, stretches beyond the lifespan of the individual, and so the individual generally looks to society as something larger than himself. As such, society is more eternal than man himself. But this does not mean that the survival and continuation of society is automatically assured. Society, like man, is still subject to the laws of nature and time. And time is never promised. Therefore, a society or civilization must also collectively ensure that prudent and wise decisions are made in the present in order to echo favorably in the future. Furthermore, a society must also seize the present by maintaining the order and stability required for survival in the present if it is to successfully continue on into the future. A society must have strong systems and mechanisms in place—laws, institutions, culture, traditions, morality, religion—to promote stability and to ensure that the majority of its people adhere to the laws of nature and survival and individually make prudent decisions which will then help to ensure the collective success and survival of society as a whole. Simply put, a strong, stable civil-society must take measures to rein in man’s often destructive base instincts of laziness, parasitism, greed, hedonism, degeneracy, instant gratification, and hyper-individualism.

And while society may be a more stable vessel to sail into the unknown abyss of the future than the individual alone, it still remains susceptible to the destructive decisions of its individuals. Especially when such destructive decisions become compounded collectively in the form of political, social, and cultural ramifications. In essence, imprudent, short-sighted, and outright subversive or destructive decisions and actions can severely destabilize, weaken, and ultimately ravage a society’s ability to successfully survive into the future. And although in some instances such a society may still technically continue to exist, it exists only as a shadow of its former self having been largely altered beyond recognition. In any case, such short-sighted imprudence is the generally result of society collectively giving in to man’s self-destructive base instincts, embracing an unwillingness to sacrifice for the future in favor of instant gratification and ultimately believing the lie that such imprudence is actually healthy, beneficial, and sustainable for society. Such collectively destructive decisions may be made either with malevolent intent or naively with good intentions, but the end results are essentially the same and intentions matter not when one is standing in the ashes. Additionally, such a delusional and socially destructive mindset can simply be stated as the ideologies of leftism and progressivism. The ideologies which celebrate such socially degenerate attitudes, as well as the irrational, yet foolishly enticing, belief that good intentions and feelings trump reality and that society is somehow immune from the laws of nature which promote future survival.

For man, due to his self-awareness and understanding of time, is easily tempted by appeals to instant gratification and his base instincts. So while it is important for an individual to appreciate and make the most of every moment of finite mortality, too much of this attitude can lead to a self-destructive, hedonistic “eat, drink, and be merry” attitude suggestive of one’s blatant lack of concern for the future. When such short-sighted attitudes are compounded collectively, and begin to alter the systemic and sociocultural properties of society and prudent long-term decision making, society loses its future orientation and rapidly begins to crush beneath the weight of its own degeneracy. And while the ignorant masses may bask in the comfort and hedonism of the hyper-individualized present, they are blind, ambivalent, or complicit to the fact that they are pissing away their collective futures—or at the very least the futures of their theoretical children. Such people, selfishly obsessed with their own personal conditions of the present, care not that their short-sighted actions are decimating the future of their collective society. Some may misguidedly think that such imprudent qualities are actually “progressive” and that they are really building a better world for their children, yet they naïvely fail to comprehend the consequences of their actions and the realities of the laws of nature. While others may selfishly think “Who cares, I will be dead and gone anyways. At least I got mine.” But whatever the case, the results are the same: the long-term destruction of society and a future due to selfish and short-sighted actions and decisions.

This is where we find ourselves today. And for those of us who grew up on the cusp, we came of age during the twilight and became men while staring into the looming decay—too young to fully realize a once anticipated future, too old to foolishly celebrate and bask amidst the ruins. We are the children of that selfish and short-sighted generation who either unknowingly or intentionally laid waste to the prospect of what was to come. They were handed something beautiful, and they destroyed it. And while I do not place all of the blame solely on them, their role in the decline cannot be overstated. As a result, we were robbed of our birthright. We were robbed of the opportunity to build a traditional life and a future in a society and civilization poised to survive and prosper. A society that still bore some semblance of sanity and future-orientation and natural order, and one that still bore some reflection to something that we could recognize and appreciate and be proud of.

We were the children of the 80s, growing up in a time of resurgent economic and technological growth and an overall spirit of newfound optimism. There was a sense of revived American patriotism and values, as the haunting specter of Vietnam began to fade and victory over the Soviets seemed within reach. Sure, the 80s still had plenty of its own unique social and cultural problems and degeneracy, but despite this there was still a genuine sense that a major cultural pushback was occurring against the short-sighted, socially destructive rabid leftism of the previous decades. Masculine cultural values were still appreciated and celebrated, traditional values were still promoted, family units were still largely intact, PC culture was not yet as prevalent, and third wave feminism had not yet reared its ugly head. And while we as children could not intellectually conceive such things, we nonetheless perceived and internalized them in other ways. Through the eyes of a child, such a spirit could be felt in the patriotic and virtuous messages portrayed in cartoon shows like GI Joe. The future appeared bright, and we expected to grow up and become men in a promising and stable society and culture resembling that of our formative years.

But alas this was not to be, and that spirit of traditional minded optimism quickly began to fade as time moved on. With the 90s, the leftward seismic cultural shift quickly resumed, proving that the previous period was merely a minor delay in the overall continuation of the subversive and delusional and short-sighted leftist sociocultural destruction largely accelerated by our parents. Yet for many of us coming of age on the cusp, myself included, many of these changes initially went unnoticed—or at the very least the full weight and significance of the consequences were not yet fully realized. But what was in fact happening was that our society’s rules, values, and very identity were forever being altered without our knowledge and consent. The collective future of our world was being squandered by irrational, delusional, and selfish short-sighted “progress”. And many of us were simply too young, blind, unable, or unwilling to adapt or accept the changes. As I stated before, many of us were too young to fully realize a future, and too old to celebrate and bask in the newfound ruins.

And as we got older, and the reality and realization of the situation started to become clear, each man’s eyes were opened by different circumstances and at different times and he was affected in different ways. For those of us with conservative and traditional attitudes, this brave new world disgusted us and their sick and dying vision of the future was one we wanted no part of. We refused to abandon our core principles and values, and we refused to compromise and adapt in order to accept the insanity and degeneracy of this suicidal modern world. We refused to close our eyes to the truth. Our futures may have been stolen from us, and that alone is unforgivable, but we still want absolutely no part in theirs. And while against all odds some lucky men among us may have found their own traditional niche and happiness in this depraved world, many others have not. And for those who have not, myself included, this awakening and realization stokes an eternal rage which words simply cannot describe.

But while it’s difficult not to dwell on all that has been lost, I will try to end on a positive note. Theirs is a society doomed to fail. It absolutely deserves to fail and the laws of nature demand that it will inevitably fail, for they have forsaken the future. So although ours was a future stolen, we must still be prepared to fight and ultimately rebuild from the ashes. Thus we try and effect change where and how we can and try to make the most of the opportunities available to us. And like Marcus Aurelius discussed, we also focus inward and work on self-improvement, knowledge, and controlling our own thoughts and attitudes. And although it may be difficult at times, we must try to appreciate the present until such a time when our futures may be realized. There are of course those circumstances we are powerless to know and change, but we are still men capable of seizing our own destinies. We are not helpless bystanders. We do not have to tolerate the intolerable. Yes, our futures once envisioned as youth may have been stolen, and that produces a justified and incalculable wrath. But we can still harness that energy to build something new. It may not be the future we expected or wanted, but it can still be ours.

The anarchy that threatens a degrading society is not its punishment, but its remedy.”—Nicolás Gómez Dávila

© 2017 By AB Frank, All Rights Reserved

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