Antinatalist thoughts

No one asks to be born. Heidegger said it best, we’re thrown into the world. Society then trains us to think in certain ways, and by doing that it limits us. It teaches us what ‘normal’ is, and it’s not long after that we forget that we were children once who only wanted to fit in with norms and codes we couldn’t understand. Society teaches us language too, tethering objects to words and we find it hard to think about objects without our labels for them. After you and I are dead, the English language and its norms will live on through the next generation. I’m not an individual, I’m a vector or a pipe or a node for my society’s norms, customs and language.

This would be depressing enough if everyone had a decent childhood. Coming into this world is a process of becoming limited. You gain more physical freedoms as you lose intellectual ones. It certainly raises questions about how democratic we could be if we’re brought up to believe in only certain things. It’s sad to fully witness all of the ways that people are reactions to their society before anything else, and not the makers of their own destiny.

But it gets worse if you consider what happens to people with rough childhoods. They’re thrown into the world too, but some people land in apple orchards and playpens, some people land in slums and crack houses. There’s a psychology study from Mary Ainsworth on attachment that keeps coming back to me: they brought in many mothers with newborns and paid them to film them, and then checked back with the kids years later. The babies who had parents that weren’t responsive to their kid’s crying grew up scared of life. They became aggressive and hostile. They never felt safe. They became involved in drugs. It became a lot easier to put them in prison. That’s life, that’s existence. Half of that child’s life is written before they are even born, and it’s only after the luck of finding themselves in a good neighborhood that people start to say that they’re self made. So, our environments affect us deeply.

But not only are we thrown into the world, not only does the previous generation make its mark on us, but life will encourage you to pass it on to the next generation. A guy and a girl meet at a party. They’ve both had rough childhoods, neither of them are in great shape financially, they start to drink a little and share things that maybe they shouldn’t, and they start to have some feelings for each other. It is inevitable that they should express this care and concern for each other physically. But what a nightmare it is, that when two people who have had rough childhoods feel the need to comfort each other, the natural tendency is to have sex, in other words, to create more life. A man and a woman get together to commiserate over being thrown into the world. And what do they do? Throw more people into the world! If a lack of intimacy, safety and security is the itch, and if sex is the scratch, the scratch doesn’t cure the itch, no, it spreads it like poison ivy to the next generation. The newborn baby’s life is both the vessel for the disease and the disease itself.

It’s disturbing because the push toward sex is relentless. Bring to mind every pain you’ve ever had in your life. To the men out here, if you’ve ever had sex with a woman, then you’ve done all you’ve needed to do to make another person be susceptible of experiencing that pain. An itch as common as the enjoyment of taking a cool shower in the summer is what pulls another person into the world. How easily we give into sex as adults and how helpless we feel as kids, but do we ever put 2 and 2 together and realize they’re the same thing? And if you’ve ever masturbated (Hah! Ever.), look at your sperm. Your father looked down at the sperm in his hand and wondered if that was going to be you one day. Into the waste basket it goes! Goodbye, millions of lives! Once you hit the completely immature of 13, you possess the tyrannical ability to create life, create hell, for another person. You can summon a human with your genitals. Your own personal Frankenstein.

When you think about things evolutionarily you realize that is our history. What Mr. Meeseeks says in Rick and Morty “Well he roped me into this!”, that’s what your father and his father and his father and his father have all said! They all cursed their fathers for being born yet still twitched their muscles in warm, wet places and still wound up creating more life. That is our evolutionary history. We are a self-replicating life pattern of thoughtless muscle twitches. Life begetting life, without thought to the consequences. We are all spurts of cum that came to life because our fathers couldn’t help themselves. And if we’re not wise, we’ll replicate the pattern again.

What’s the takeaway? Condoms, birth control and vasectomies are fucking sacred as far as I’m concerned. I’m also really pleased with gay and lesbian relationships too. And there are also ways for men to orgasm with ejaculation. But our evolutionary history is mindless fucking, and therefore our existence is owed to mindless fucking. If you would not like to see the damage done to you by life done to another person, CAREFUL HOW YOU FUCK. And for fuck’s sake, let her orgasm first! Her orgasm doesn’t create life but yours does!

A short critique of identity

I like to focus on the impact of capitalism on personal mental health. To be sure, it’s a massive, massive topic. The impact on capitalism (or the world you grew up in) on personal mental health is so incomprehensibly large you might as well ask what the impact on a nail would be if you hit it with a hammer the size of Texas. There isn’t even a definition of what capitalism is, aside from the business cycle itself. But there are cultural mainstays that if they do not cause capitalism, they have accompanied capitalism in developed countries. So if you are in the United States and are interested in capitalism’s impact on personal mental health, please keep on reading my critique of identity.

In capitalism, it often feels like you’re on your own. Being an individual seems to be the daily life of people living under capitalism. This insistence on being an individual, a self-made man, is a double-edged sword. On one hand, you are allowed to claim all of your achievements as a result of your own sense of self, but on the other hand all of your failures and shortcomings are yours as well. It’s within this context that the self-help and mental health industry positions itself: helping individuals fight their demons alone. Good mental health is living happily as an individual. Bad mental health is dissatisfaction from living as an individual. But this is how you help people, on the scale of individuals.

But we are not individuals, or if we are the term needs to surrender a lot of the power associated to it. We are people born into situations. Suburbanite parents on the hill say of young African-American boys “Well if I was born in the ghetto I would refuse to sell drugs.” No, you wouldn’t, because you wouldn’t be you then. The very act of saying “I” invokes your entire upbringing. Your very identity is made out of society. Society furnishes you with the raw materials out of which you make yourself. The proof of this is that we all identify with the word “I” but none of us invented it. We had to be taught it. At best, “I” refers to a mixture of your will and the larger environment, a compromise between the world you were born into and your desires for yourself that would have come true had it not been for the world. At worst, “I” is an amputation, a denial of the world that they exist in. This is where people like to play the same game as those suburbanite parents did: they like to imagine themselves as divorced from their circumstances, and able to jump into anyone’s life at anyone’s moment to cast judgment, like Agent Smith in the Matrix or something. This type of finger pointing has no bearing to actual reality: people aren’t moved by ethics, they’re moved by food. Matter of fact, food is people’s primary requirement. People need food. People don’t need ethics but they do need food.

Reworking what “I” means is a very important task to both revolutionary thought and personal sanity, and even here I didn’t go deep enough into how problematic the concept of “I” is. But for now, be assured that the world is not resting on YOUR shoulders. Take care of yourselves, lefties.