Something about Nile achieves the guttural in a way that no other band I’ve found really does, to the point that it feels transcendent, but in a transcendence pointed downward…
In “How to Become an Alchemist” Catherine MacCoun explained the way the psychological realm works: what if there was an entire dimension dedicated to a kiss, and the feeling of a kiss, but if you moved beyond the boundaries of kissing, you would leave the boundaries of that place? Its only reality is kiss-ness, you touch it when you touch kiss-ness, you disconnect when you leave. Everyone who kisses is thus part of an unspoken religion of contact with that center of gravity which is the essence of kiss-ness.
Imagine one made of willpower and malice. Once in a dream I met Mussolini there. His soul was as black as ever, and I was happy to see it. The emotion was so pure that I could share in it as it emanated from him. He was broodingly regretful — but not apologetic — about his life. The relevant politics were not spoken, but understood. He had been a Leftist, and the Left had disappointed him. He wanted to find a movement worthy of his energy, and invented fascism. But not only was it not what he had really, deep down wanted, but it also ended in miserable defeat. Yet he was absolutely sure that it wasn’t his fault, his life had played out pretty much the only way that it could have given the shortcomings of the Italian Left.
Since that dream I’ve worked to carry that evil energy in a better direction, to actual glory and not disgrace. I’ve realized I must never trek down the road of trying to popularize Left ideas by polluting them with the content of the Right, but instead must tap deeply into the emotional and unconscious side of politics, and the more human methods of organizing which utilize it (as opposed to conscious theory), and use them to bring an actual mass character to the US Left. Also to acknowledge the unacknowledged dark side of my life of needing to focus on my own personal economics and career, and not just the big light side dreams of changing the world. But as for the Left I’ve realized that this is something I must do, not because it is the right thing to do, but because I cannot exist any other way. Out of nothing more than my own sheer selfish will to see our side win, my life is entirely tied up with our victory, our emergence as a mass relevant force, and then pushing beyond that all the way, to unspeakable dreams.
My will is tied up into this irreconcilably. There is no scenario in which the Left of the next decade fails to constitute itself and gain ground in an unignorable jump of organized strength. Not because that’s the rational prediction, though in many ways it is. But because those words are simply unimaginable, my brain rejects them. They make as much sense as “colorless green ideas sleep furiously” or “I think I’m becoming apolitical.” I know firmly that others but also myself are working on this, and as for me, I am going to stay determined, and systematically consolidate each phase of growth, and sustainably expand. Nothing else can even possibly happen, because such is my nature.
The gravity of our looming future sends its echoes backward through time, those of us who listen can hear and see them, and the gravity reaches backward too, pulling us almost helplessly to the rituals of hastening its arrival.
Absolute Will ceases to feel like a choice. It is more a possible future that you have sworn loyalty to, with which you are henceforth aligned. Perhaps some people find themselves compelled to such visions out of love, or selflessness, but I’m skeptical that’s possible. As Nietzsche explained, every saint and martyr draws their legendary determination, their power-over-themselves, from their insistence that their own individual personhood is worthy of grand significance. The audacity of individually electing a destiny so vast can only be possessed by someone with a deep self-respect that proceeds beyond to abundant self-love and ultimately bleeds into a sort of ethical solipsism. The only thing they can see is their goal. THEIR goal. All else fades into the surroundings.
Such is the dark side.