Vanguard of the Apocalypse
1: the units moving at the head of an army
2: artists or writers whose ideas are ahead of their time
3: the position of greatest advancement; the leading position in any movement or field
1: the end of the world (the civilized world)
Beyond the romantic imagery of ruins — feral foragers and neo-primitives living amidst smoldering skyscrapers torn apart by weeds and the disquieting welcome of wrist-thick kudzu vines; beyond the religious connotation and notions of prophetic “end times” predictions — we want the apocalypse. We wish to see the end of the world as we know it and the birth of the unknown. This is an active engagement, physically and emotionally.
We are not content on waiting. Whether or not the “end is near” is not a point of contention. Though we can feel catastrophe in our hearts and distress in our souls we are not deluded by anticipating inevitabilities. Leave the stages of social evolution and revolution (...capitalism, civilization, catastrophe?) to the Marxists! What we want now is not because of what may happen — no matter how close to the edge our culture is teetering (and we don’t deny that it is). What we want now is because of what is happening — we can no longer bear the weight of civilization destroying our connection to each other and the natural community...alienating us to the point where “home sweet home” is a prison... where extinction is a necessary evil.
This world — the civilized world — is a threat to all life and we are not content to sit and watch that threat become closer and closer to us a reality. We see very little to save in this world... we have no hope... and we have no delusions. This world is a threat that cannot be fixed, transformed, reformed, or radicalized. This world is a threat and we wish to see it destroyed.
What we want is an apocalypse — an end of the civilized world and the birth of new worlds unknown.
Our apocalypse is of the natural, not supernatural, order. We don’t believe in a Great Cleansing. We just want to be wild and free...to live in a world of spontaneity, chance, and chaos. The capacity to be free is a capacity that has been denied to everything living by civilization. To destroy civilization is to allow this capacity to be regained.
The apocalypse we want will not cleanse the world of sinners and keep only saints — this is a reality. Anyone can survive. Capitalists and communists, workers and slaves, green anarchists and green berets alike. The paradigm of civilization may not go down with its body but the direct threat to all life will have disappeared for a long, long time. Civilizations may pop up, but they will never reach their monolithic status so long as pockets of wild and feral resistance still exist. Should we halter our dreams and activities in the face of something that may or may not eventually happen — post-apocalyptic war, roving bands of thugs, the rebuilding of civilization? Should we stifle the chance for freedom in the face of fear (of being free to do whatever we want)? If anything...we’ll die free...and what an exciting time to live and die it will be!
We don’t wish for a return to anything. What we don’t want is to return to the Golden Age of Perfection because we know perfection is a lie — and a highly civilized one at that! We don’t want to be Inuit, !Kung, Kayapo, Navajo, Amish, Australopithecines or Pan troglodytes. While the lessons of the past are invaluable, and what these groups may have to teach is important, we recognize the fallacy of emulation. We want to create our own cultures out of the ashes of this monoculture; to rewrite the future in a thousand different ways. These groups — ancestors and kin — transmit to us, no matter how indirect, lessons we must transform so that they work for us. We see them as inspirations, not models, for the new worlds.
We don’t claim leadership, authority, or prophecy on the future; we will not be the elite feral humans existing amongst the ruins of metropoles, but we figure if this world — the civilized world — must end, why not be on the front lines? Beyond the romantic imagery of ruins and the prophecy of inevitability we are prepared...prepared to bring on the apocalypse — mentally, spiritually, and physically.
The Kudzu-clad Vanguard of the Apocalypse