The Revolution Issue

Fictitious lives

A loving look at unreality.
Our Lives Are Just Fictions - Grounded not in reality, but in illusion.
In China people get together in the corners of parks and dance. The unofficial history of America is not a story of rugged individualism and heroic personal sacrifice in the pursuit of a dream. It is a story of democracy derailed, of a revolutionary spiri

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We forget too often that our lives are just fictions, that this human life of ours – abstracted from the land, abstract in itself – is not grounded in reality, but in drama, illusion. Our lives are no different from dreams, a scattered blur from one meal to the next, from one conversation to the next, one megaplex, one strip mall, one coffee cup, one beer, one fix – a ceaseless drifting from sensation to sensation, a constant sating of the base desires.

We are raised in this “reality” so its contours are invisible to us. We see each moment but fail to see the unifying thread – the alienation of humanity from nature, the ills of domestication, the dependence of humans upon technological death machines to survive and a growing inability of these generations of young humans now in possession of the planet to connect to it in any living way. We have lost our ability to experience the grander trends as revealed through the almighty Moment. We cling to our petty satisfactions as a paddler fallen from a canoe clings to the rocks. We do not dare to imagine a life without pizza, ice cream, microwaves, transportation, convenience, comfort, ease.

The 21st century has been too kind to us so far. It holds new horizons for us as an übersoul and as an überspecies, but it remains pregnant with disaster. There must be wars, Great Wars, which span all frontiers, in which all are embroiled in conflict: the inner war spilling out into our long-abandoned commons, opening up doorways between men and women to converse freely, tearing down walls between minds and bodies, flesh and the soul. Bottles will be uncorked and men in pajamas will run terrified and buoyant through the streets. If there is not madness, there will be blood, midnight rivers of blood rushing mad like the Mississippi through the markets of the world, stampeding through those who stand still, toppling those who once towered above the meek and lowly, lifting the strong and light, buoying them up on its terrible tide …

—Hudson Spivey

133 comments on the article “Fictitious lives”

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Ken Vallario

experiencing life only through the passions, i admit is very exciting, and, you are right to say that doing so makes one more vulnerable to fate...

but, when one balances passion, out of a desire for compassion, with reason, one is able to access free-will, which exists within a range of enlightened choice, and that is a feeling not accessible to one riding on top of an autonomous wave.

furthermore, the future will be constructed, not by the surfers, but by those who go into the ocean of the collective unconscious to find the answers that will calm the surface....allowing us to float safely within this watered down metaphor...

i agree with you that the revolution is coming...i am simply trying to find the other members of my tribe, and develop survival mechanisms for civility, so that after the bifurcated forms of barbarism have their holy war, i will survive and be able to enjoy the greater glory of rebuilding my child's future world...


All that is fine, but when you act as a wet blanket on the passion of others, you aid the counter-revolution.

We are your tribe.

ken vallario

yes, that's my point....revolution, counter-revolution...these are all 20th century paradigms, and they do not work in a political realm with a constantly shifting ground of being...there is nothing to revolt against, everything is moving all the time...if my tribe shared this awareness then we would be having a truly radical conversation...

as far as the 'wet blanket' goes...when it comes to an enthusiasm for bloodshed, i see no politics at work, i see only animal regressive urges...the opposite of, of course, i will seem like a wet blanket to the fires of uncontrolled ego, and i suppose i am fine with that...

but let's not kid ourselves into thinking that rampant bloodshed and anarchy are anything new, or revolutionary, or even effective...they are just an easy way to escape the hard work of community building...intellectual, spiritual and moral laziness....



A method of argument that is seemingly plausible though actually invalid and misleading

The art of using such arguments

Subtle but unsound or fallacious reasoning

An instance of this; sophism


"it is better to ride the flows than try to stem the tide" — that's exactly the attitude of the so-called 'zombies' that make up the majority


Okay that sounded extremely fascist. You know, attacking a group of people based on their political leanings is considered genocide. Nobody on the left wants to shoot anyone and hang them from lamp posts. I hope your comment didn't get you reported to the Department of Homeland Security - you encouraged violence against two American citizens.



Yes, just look at the Tea-Party "movement". This Party was set up (by the one the one %) to attack public health care and press for big business tax cuts. Despite its' friends in the press, and millions spent on PR, all they can ever do is produce an image of mass public support. For when did the hard-right ever set up a true grass-roots movements?

PS. Since all this hate seems aimed at deflecting attention from the weakness of the Hard-Right, I wish "Steve B" a Nice Day!



PS. Since all this hate (from the likes of Steve B) seems aimed at deflecting attention from weaknesses in Hard-Right thinking, perhaps we should just wish them a Nice Day? And then continue to undermine them.


Wrong. We "zombies" greatly outnumber you, and our governments will gladly hand us assault rifles to defend ourselves.

Caleb Greenstein

All I'm going to say is to you is to ask more questions. Ask why you pay high taxes. Ask how our money is created. Ask why we have an exponentially growing federal debt. Do not be satisfied with an answer that does not make sense to you.


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