Tag Archives: Meaning

An Individualist Collective : Millennial Intent

The idea of a collective of individuals is probably a little difficult to digest, but contrasting ideas are often innovative and meaningful. Integrating and working with many different people with individual, unique backgrounds, purposes and minds is a revolutionary notion for a society which has become too samey, sluggish and boring.

Yes, we already have collectives, but they are homogenous, often espousing rigid, inflexible political mantras and violently ejecting anyone who does not agree with all of its overly simplistic, obstinate pillars of agreed wisdom. This was once religion, though now more often we see it in the far-left political sphere. More than ever, the idea of intolerance towards perceived intolerance (often just disagreement on truth), has become acceptable and even desirable on the left.

I ask, what kind of society do we want to build for our children and future generations? Is it a world filled with shame, inflexibility and intolerance to diversity of opinion (though often touting social diversity)? Or do we accept difference in human character, sexual orientation, race, religion AND thought? Nothing in nature is uniform, not even DNA, so why do we expect this to apply to ideas? The blueprint for life is built on variance, not similarity. Our thoughts, a product of our brains, and our brains – no two the same – a product of our DNA. Every biological blue print is different.

Here at Millennial Intent we appreciate variance in all forms, including the organic ideas in the organic mind. We connect, find value and meaning, through our differences. Like the magpie’s nest, we would have all the best, shiniest medallions of human thought and ingenuity, but unlike the magpie, we assort them to the benefit of humanity, building a narrative, a palace of ideas that everyone can benefit from.

We want a collective and to accommodate your ideas on our platform. We value independent thought. The kind of person who thinks about changing the world while they’re on the bus to work, or mowing the lawn on Sunday. We value active thought, inspired ideas that happen on the go. We make ideas meet, joining the dots, making the connections which make for fascinating reading world-shattering ideas.

There is no longer any diversity among the elites. The news outlets, social media platforms and Universities are against diversity, against you, the average working man or woman. Clever though you are, you are kept in check by these well established yet often difficult to see forces of negative pressure. You deserve better than this. We at Millennial Intent have started a grass roots movement for the disillusioned and depreciated. We want a platform that supports you and gives you a voice against these forces.

It comes as no surprise then that we see a lack of diversity amongst the political elites, media outlets, social media companies and Universities. All now (with but a few exceptions in news) can be described as left-wing organisations. Everywhere you see diversity crushed, a left-wing organisation harbouring virtuous slogans of social diversity has sprouted. It will be our job in this generation to pay close attention to the double standards, false virtues and evil deeds of these kinds of institutions. We have a moral duty to begin to call out these insidious tactics where we find them and replace them with honesty, integrity and cooperation.

Would a bird find its home if all the trees were the same? A flower is called a weed when it is numerous, and beautiful when it is rare. We value the summer because it only comes once a year.  Only a few have seen the Aurora Borealis in person and most say it is a singular wonder, a visual feast in the coldest regions of the world where the white snow frames its vibrancy all the better.

Be a flower amongst weeds. The first day of warmth after winter. An aurora on the edge of the world.

True diversity is rarer than you think.

Millennial Intent

Art by Zoe Outram Art

Write a letter, start a revolution.

Dear reader,

I was talking with a friend I met through a poetry group on Facebook the other day. I was deciding to leave the platform and, as always, he had a novel suggestion. I had asked for his details because I wanted to stay in touch with people off the platform. If you look at my previous post Facebook, what have you done to us?, I decided to leave Facebook for various reasons, ethical, behavioural and psychological. His idea was this: ‘Let’s write a letter to each other’.

I thought to myself how peculiar that was and was meditating on the idea a bit. Why have we stopped writing letters? Well, the clear answer is that the internet does it faster. Sure, the internet has revolutionised communication but is that a good thing?

We used to take time to think and reflect on all the amazing things that happen to us in the weeks and months. Carefully, we’d curate a picture of our lives that showed all the most meaningful experiences we’d had lately in the two-fold process of consolidating and processing it for ourselves, and sharing with others.

I thought about what it would be like to receive a letter that was not about doctors appointments or bills, written in an individual font, addressed to me, the person, not me, the body, number or consumer. I came to the conclusion that writing letters to close ones is probably the most counter cultural, revolutionary thing young people can do in an age saturated by technology, and so coked up on its own sophistication, it’s losing any meaning or value it might once have had.

So here’s my challenge to you. Write three letters this month. Really think about your life and what has happened. Share it with those you care about but don’t see often enough. Tell me in the comments below that you posted it and that you’re taking up this counter revolution against technology. We need to slow down and think at the speed of a letter.

Share this article with friends and family. We’re re-writing the future, one hand-written letter at a time.

Yours Sincerely,

MI

Contact us if you have ideas or would like to share your thoughts on society.

Facebook, what have you done to us?

Facebook has had a good, long life. It started out as a humble networking site on the campus where Mark Zuckerberg studied at Harvard, growing into the largest social media platform today. Humble beginnings perhaps, but where are we now?

Mark Zuckerberg is worth $55 billion, owns snapchat, whatsapp, instagram and various other platforms and technologies. His only remaining competition in the social media realm is Twitter, and it’s not clear how long that will remain the case.

Zuckerberg, having crowded out and monopolised on social networks, is now manipulating and controlling the information we see and the words we can use. According to Jason Lanier, a tech guru from Silicon Valley, social media platforms, by and large, harbour negative biases towards news and content. This means that the worst people and stories rise to the top more quickly than positive content. Not only this, but Facebook, more than ever, has the ability to shut down speech. Reporting content without context is rife and often vindictive. Radicalism, too, hides in shelters behind private groups where users gather to manifest their political malcontent and to be heard by those who will agree with them. Leaving them unchecked often encourages extremism over time.

On an individual and psychological level, Facebook is addictive. It gives you a quick neuro-chemical boost every time you get a like, share, or comment, and reinforces your compulsion to check, to revisit, to waste more of your time than you could ever want to waste. I want to live a life filled with books, music, people, creative design and purpose, none of which the platform can give me, all of which it can take.

Follow MI for an update in a month as to what has changed. Was it worth it to leave? How did my life improve? Can you benefit from taking a leap into the unknown which was once known to us all? Are we the same without social media? If we’re different, how and by how much?

Zuckerberg, I’m going to find out just what you’ve done to us, and how badly we need to reshape our environment outside of your image.

Logging out,

Millennial Intent

3 Minute Book Review – ‘Rude’ – Katie Hopkins

Rude‘ is an eye-opening and inspiring look at a life which everyone has decided is driven by ‘evil’. Crude at times, but (as always) brutally honest, Hopkins takes us from where she began to where she is now. This might better be named ‘The making of Katie Hopkins’, than ‘Rude’, because rudeness really features at the bottom end of the scale. What shines through is honesty, an integrity (which at times has cost her dearly) and boundless ebullience. You wouldn’t believe the trials Katie faced to get where she is today, and the struggle has shaped everything she does now. Knowing you might have less than two years to live, having seizures every night from a brain tumour that’s killing you slowly, and making a huge number of personal mistakes, would make anyone with courage into a Hopkins. Why we give her so much crap for it I will never understand.

Anyway, once you read ‘Rude’ and understand the foundations that built the person we see today, it all makes sense. In a way, not only does this book make for an interesting insight into someone you might not necessarily understand, it is also a humbling experience. What so many of us think of as ‘hardship’ is relative. Katie drags you into the depths of yourself to consider your moral fibre. What should I be doing with my life? How important is it to say what I really mean? How can I learn from my mistakes?

Life is not everlasting. We could all reflect on our own laziness and life-inertia, and learn how to be people of action by listening to the wisdom of a life lived in the fast lane. So fast, in fact, that this book encapsulates the feeling you get before you go over your bike or crash a car. This book is the essence of a ‘life flashing before your eyes’ and ‘Rude’ will make you reflect deeply on how to make yours count as you consider the time you have left.

The Age of Trickster: How Trolls are Saving the Internet

The internet troll, a harbinger of jibes, trickery and absurdity, has long been characterised as a perverse blockage, obstruction or intrusion on the normal flow of debate on the internet. But what if the troll was not a troll at all, but a voice of absolute necessity in times when internet discussions proliferate with censorship, vicious commentary backlash, and even harassment from the radical left and the suffocating clingfilm presence of political correctness?

Now let me be clear, when I use the term troll, I am only referring to the internet presence that will roll over and duck under the comments of opposition, the magicians who raise the diametrically opposed opinion from the grave, play devil’s advocate, obfuscate, deflect and reverse public discourse online. We’re not talking about the harmful and evil presences on the internet who will hurt people, find where they live and ruin their personal lives. These people are destroyers. They are not trolls, they are actively malicious, disturbed and dangerous people who quite honestly should be held accountable for their behaviour.

No, the internet troll is a trickster, a devil and a God, a master of reversal, everyone’s fool and everyone’s master. We’ve all been talking about serious topics online and then someone comes into the fray and blows a ridiculous, silly hole in the discussion and everyone is losing their minds ‘you must be a troll, nobody can be that stupid’ they say. The conversation is very often political and sensitive to many. Feminism, racial tensions, transgender pronouns to name a few hot topics. Then, out of nowhere, when all prevailing discussion is comforting, safe and settled, BANG! ‘Men deserve maternity leave, the woman should get back to her job after having the baby’, or ‘I don’t know why transgender rights are an issue, I’ve been called worse things than the incorrect pronoun for my gender’. The troll has dropped a payload that has wrecked serenity, bastardised the unwritten rules of civility and defiled decency of discourse.

Naturally, people react with contempt, with loathing and hatred, some with dissolution, some with confusion, but some will see it for what it is, disruption. And ok, most of the time, people don’t get it, they reject trolls as if they are merely flies to be swatted and disposed of, but is a fly so easy to kill? Famously we have all seen the fly in a movie or cartoon that totally destroys the set up. Take for example Looney Tune’s Bugs Bunny conducting a symphony orchestra in one of many episodes from the franchise, a grand and serious affair. One fly flits and buzzes about, so insignificantly, yet, so crucially. Bugs loses it and proceeds to smash cymbals, puncture drums and feverously swat at the tiny thing until the entire ensemble is in ruins and the show, completely derailed.

Image result for bugs bunny orchestra

‘Bugs Bunny at the Symphony II’ A single fly brings a pompous event to its knees.

It’s the trickster troll’s resilience, evasiveness and ability to wreak inadvertent catastrophe with nothing but a whisper (or a buzz) which deserves our respect and attention. And we should look back to where the trickster came from to find out why he does the things he does. Carl Jung, a pupil of the most famous Psychologist in history, Freud, came up with the archetypes, including the archetypal trickster. He states, using the example of ‘Mercurius’ (The Roman God Mercury) that the roman God embodies most strongly the trickster in ‘his fondness for sly jokes and malicious pranks, his powers as a shape-shifter, his dual nature, half animal, half divine, his exposure to all kinds of tortures, and last but not least – his approximation to the figure of saviour’[1]. The motif is prevalent and recurrent. Apollo the messenger was also trickster, the Native American Coyote, and the figure of the shaman who deals in dark arts have all come to signify the archetype.

Trickster permeates popular culture too. For example, Dr Facilier from Disney’s ‘Princess and the Frog’ is a trickster figure who manipulates spirits but ultimately ends up at their mercy when he fails to fulfil the contract he agrees to gain their command. Daenerys Targaryen from the phenomenally successful Game of Thrones series makes a deal with a female witch doctor, Mirri Maz Duur, her child’s life for her husband’s (Drogo) restoration from a fatal wound. The female witch doctor tricks Daenerys and she ends up with a shade, a dribbling fool and a baron womb. Mirri Maz Duur dupes Daenerys but ends up being burned by fire just before we witness an even greater miracle of birth, the three dragons, thought to be long extinct. In this way, though the trickster plays tricks, the new trick deployed always backfires and trickster becomes the one in the firing line.

Image result for daenerys mirri maz duur

Mirri Maz Duur tricks Daenerys into paying for Drogo’s life with her unborn child.

The trickster, Jung suggests, is also exemplified by the ‘’monkey tricks’’, the ‘state of affairs in which everything goes wrong and nothing intelligent happens except by mistake at the last moment’, the preface leading into a connection of trickster with the workings of politics[2]. Again, we have all witnessed our own disbelief at the sheer absurdity, pettiness and childishness of our political representatives, yet the world has not fallen apart and changes for the better still come into being despite the incredible nature of some of the debates we sometimes end up audience to on the internet or from our television screens.

So why does this figure recur and enter so many doors into the human consciousness? Jung argues the trickster is our primitive ‘shadow’, the antithesis of civilisation, a primal entity which antagonises against order[3]. And, it is this shadow that we must never forget though our want of civilisation paradoxically wills us to try.

Nowhere is this better illustrated than in the rise of political correctness across the west, a direct result of our loss of sight of our equalising shadow, the trickster. Remarkably Jung foretold this also in his discussion of the role of trickster in society:

‘The disastrous idea that everything comes to the human psyche from the outside a ‘tabula rasa’ (blank slate) is responsible for the erroneous belief that under normal circumstances the individual is in perfect order. He then looks to the state for salvation, and makes society pay for his inefficiency. He thinks the meaning of existence would be discovered if food and clothing were delivered to him gratis on his own doorstep or if everybody possessed an automobile. Such are the puerilities that rise up in place of an unconscious shadow and keep it unconscious’[4].

So the trickster comes to serve as a reminder of our core subconscious shadow, a force of chaos and instability which is a part of all of us, but that our consciousness will suppress and resist in the pursuit of civilisation.

But, given this necessity of push and pull, the shadow against the light, the light isn’t always good. In fact, when the light shines everywhere and the shadow disappears, we are left blind to our ugly side, but not enlightened or excised of it. As Jung predicts, we look out at a world lit up, anticipating that the shadows lurk outside and can be found, but we forget that the shadow is in us, and we cannot find him always without, but always within.

So, we hate our trickster trolls for their obfuscation, their trickery and ugliness. An era of political correctness asks us to excise the entities which will act against civility by censor and seizure of rights to speak for fear of offence, but if that is the state then why has the internet troll become a mythology of the internet, inextricably tied to it, enshrined forever? The further we punish trickster into hiding, the greater our need is for his presence. The internet troll no better embodies an age of civilisation gone too far. We need trolls more than we have ever needed them, but perhaps if we recognise how trickster impedes us from within, we will not continue to push him into hiding, only to make him stronger.

 

Bibliography

Jung, C. G. n.d. The Archetypes And The Collective Unconscious. 255 – 267

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