Where does Art go from here? Here, philosophically. Postmodernism is a dead end, and it feels like Nietzsche still has a few more words to say, resonating in in the modern man. Humanity hasn't finished exploring Nietzschean ideology, but the end result is emptiness, and the tremors of that implication are starting to ripple through the cutting edge, the foremost front, of society. It seems like we'll resort to a sort of philosophic amnesia, pretend it's not that bad. Blatantly reject the emptiness. Or embrace it. Or fail to acknowledge it, doomed to traverse the philosophic trails again. All of the above.
My metafictional stories, I have characters above and beyond the story, a sort of pantheon of characters who protect “stories” and “story worlds,” and when a story’s in danger they deus ex into it and work behind the scenes to save it. And I realized, while the characters above the stories fight to protect stories, the author fights to protect the Story. Meaning, message, form, what have you, that’s what the writer fights to protect. And I can’t fight to protect something that’s already been destroyed. Story has no meaning anymore, if it ever did. There’s no point to them. Entertaining, overdrawn metaphors that didact in oblique ways, if they even attempt a meaning beyond simple entertainment. And yet the best crafted classics, with the greatest messages of morality or the dangers of laxity therein, what more impact are those of dead men from ages and empires gone by now than social media propaganda, news stories, moralizing speeches, what difference does it make? It’s all emptiness. Even the most substantive have nothing corporeal to offer but illusion.
But to write to herald the meaninglessness of message, the vanity and delusion of significance in our efforts, is to embrace the very architecture being denounced. “Ultimately it doesn’t matter” is to argue that this piece matters, even if for so inconsequential a purpose as to lay bare the ineffectuality of preserving these or any thoughts to atemporal form. And further, a beast inside me, a sheer brute who will not see reason, rages against the thought of life being irrelevant. That it can’t mean nothing, that our best efforts are wasted on not a generation of wisps, but a race. A species’ whose lifespans are like breath fogged in the cold, who pass faster beneath the halls of time than the tears of the sky from the face of the earth. That the metaphor and simile which convey a greater meaning must have a greater impact than the atomic units of speech called individual words. That their message has an impact greater than grass deformed by the passage of soccer balls and children’s cleats and the paws of pets.
There must be meaning! Significance! And such the barbaric yawp concludes, with furious fist-pounding and feet-stomping and the Bastille of Philosophy unmoved by its passions. This too further entrenches the ceaseless march of meaninglessness upon the message of Art. This is Ouroboros. Any system which claims meaning, when it attempts to manifest meaning, devolves into meaningless, yet cannot express this meaninglessness without axiomatically presupposing meaning. And to assume no meaning at all precludes the necessity of conveying this meaninglessness. Why, then, has no one told the snake to take its tail out of its mouth? Break the circle, end the cycle, allow for transcendent and unprecedented progress.
Those who have are the Regressors and Traitors of humanity. For to remove the tail is not progress, but regression. There can in no wise be no advance if the command is to retreat. And still the antinomy remains that the tail remains and must be eaten, and yet to do so is madness. And yet still further to not is madness further. For the Regressors are mad, all of them, backwards and barbaric. They claim sanity while advancing the preposterous claim that recession is furtherance, loss is gain, and other such illogical ravings. Perhaps their maddest is that humans should sublimate themselves to the undead Deity, for they claim Him to still be in spite of our knowing that He is not. How can this information be, when the Great Informant has been informed out of existence?
It seems Certainty is madness and folly, also. To know the Death of God is to know the Death of Art, for with Meaning gone, meaning is no longer meaningful. And yet to know this is itself an admission of the agnostic creed, for with no certainty may the madmen say God is dead if He truly be. So if not dead, then absent, a practical death if not literal, and we’ve yet to escape our fate. Despair doesn’t just seem, it is the inescapable conclusion and consummation of our traverse through the heavens. Truly, it is a simple matter to grasp the stable insanity of the Regressors.
Yet I, a Regressor, speak with veiled voice, as if my own insanity credentials me to elocute the doctrines of another mania. We are all sane here, and that is the problem. Intellect has been our Virgil, yet his pupils’ paths have diverged to drastically opposed destinations. I cannot help but heed the Gate’s warning, yet my Regression forbids and prevents me from pledging full allegiance thereunto. It is my Regression that fuels that savage, barbaric yawp, reinforces and steels it against all assault. Meaninglessness cannot be within the paradigm of Regression, yet apart from that lens my eyes behold nothing but such a wasteland that not even the carrion and parasites can scavenge. Yet to call this Regression barbarism is an insult to the clear and undefiled lunacy that disconnects the Ouroboros and worships the Resurrected.
It is madness to Regress, and it is madness not to. The only sane assessment is that we are all insane, yet which among us is the most sane, who can most sanely make that analysis? The mad leading the mad. Yet I was Regressed with the simple faith of a child long before I learned the speech of the mortal gods.
How then am I to speak? I, who hold fealty to the Transcendent, to Meaning and Fact and Truth, amidst a wilderness of decapitalization. I, who believe in Meaning and meaning and yet the pointlessness of meaning Meaning Itself prescribes, to prescribe meaning and Meaning to my fellow madmen yet Unregressed. I, who believe my purpose, any author’s raison d'etre, to write and protect the Story, so Miniveran—for the Story has already been destroyed.