The esoteric is basically a reflection of the exoteric, by default. Most of what we are is what we learn, and most of what we learn is offered, often aggressively, by the prevailing nomos. It’s comparable to a proprietary computer operating system, where the code is well hidden, and updates are often uploaded from some central hub, usually whether we want them or not. Safeguards are implemented to make sure we do not fuck with the code.The ‘law’, morality, ‘right and wrong’, right conduct vs ‘wrong’ conduct(such as say, not shaking someones hand when they offer it, or maybe wearing swim trunks to the office), religion, ‘patriotism/nationalism’, and the ‘education’ gauntlet (examples, not exhaustive) serve as overarching clusters of control memes built to keep ‘us’ on the right path, to keep us submissive and under control.
Attempts to ‘re-write’ the software for everyone are ultimately pointless, as the ‘software’ lives within the minds of people, far too many people to ‘reprogram’. Even if such an endeavor were possible the submissive nature of most people would lead to this new ‘software’ filling the role of the old, ie a proprietary system that people willingly submit to, becoming more and more honed to it’s purpose by those that might benefit by doing so(including those that are subject to it themselves) until we have a new version of the old, a new nomos. The dynamic would inevitably remain the same.
There is nothing inherently ‘wrong’ with the ‘software’ anyway, it is what it is and it is because it was inevitable. Human society is a reflection of the human animal and the dynamic is wired to that inescapable truth. Until the nature of man, the animal, changes the system of social order he creates for himself will always serve the same functions vis a vis his ‘psyche’. He will always be looking to ‘something else’, to that software developer to offer the system and maintain it. Name it ‘God’, name it Government, name it family name it ‘success’. Name it any or all of these, or something else entirely,as long as it is something ‘greater’, something for which there is no personal responsibility. Ultimately it all has the same name…’master’.
Many if not most have no problem with this, and the abrahamic memeplex to which most of the world is heavily subjected actually goes so far as to place submission and obedience on a pedestal, enshrining these things as values. These ‘values’ have stretched far and wide beyond the religion(s) that spawned them, and that suits the purveyors of nomos just fine in this age as in most previous ages. Yet some, for whatever reason are driven to autonomy. Perhaps our wiring is ‘broken’, or perhaps we are a biological necessity, the rough edge of evolution and change, from the inside out. Perhaps ‘we’ keep the stagnant pool from festering ‘just enough’ to keep it alive.
Regardless of reasoning, for myself and those like myself there is an impetus, an impetus from deep within us to break free of it. A feeling that this is all wrong, all arbitrary. An intuitive knowing that the prefabricated person we create in our head, that is created in others heads, that we are told and retold is what we are isn’t actually ‘us’. Merely a form, a sculpted bottle to fill.
If you are going to travel up shit creek, you are going to need a paddle. The software can be ‘hacked’.
Sure, it isn’t easy. When I speak of things like stepping into the abyss, of doing the ‘deeds of the devil’, of breaking the chains that bind you I speak (although admittedly metaphorically) of this very thing. The psyche itself, the ‘you’ that you imagine is you is firmly bound up in a packaging of ‘ego’. The ego seeks not only validation but a sort of ‘comfort zone’ which we might call sanity, or normality, or regularity, or even ‘personality’, so mere words are not sufficient to effect it. Sure, we can learn things from writing but things that challenge our point of view are very easy to rationalize away, and as this is the path of least resistance it is generally taken. Consider the last time you talked a christian out of his faith. Never? No amount of logic or reason can assault a belief someone finds important to who or what they believe themselves to be.
To look into the abyss, to ‘hack the software’ requires transcending language into the realm of pure experience. When I speak of ‘pure experience’ I mean those moments when time slows to a crawl..the moment you know you are in a fight, the moment you know you are in critical danger, the moment you know you have just done something that just can not be rationalized into synchronicity with the ‘you’ you have created for yourself. These moments are worth lifetimes, and it is in these moments where the providence of the devil, MY devil, reigns supreme.
Often times these moments critically alter a position or a view that might have been crucial to maintaining the ‘you’ you think you are or were, and can oftentimes be traumatic or painful for just this reason. Sometimes these moments merely expose a limit or view you didn’t even consciously realize you had, or conversely make you realize what you thought was a personal boundary was merely an illusion. Once a limit is realized as false you have achieved slightly more autonomy, and once a limit is realized for what it is it can be thusly assaulted and overcome by further ‘raw experience’ selectively chosen for the given purpose.
Of course, sometimes a limit is exposed as such and you can be comfortable with that, but even in these instances you come away with a greater knowledge of the self, a realization of a boundary you at least know is your own and not somebody elses you might have adopted.
This process does come at a price though, as you come to realize and constantly remind yourself that ‘you’ are not always who ‘you’ think ‘you’ are, and you may not even be a ‘you’ at all! In fact, I would go so far as to say the crystallization of the ego is the antithesis to your own autonomy, as the more you define yourself the more you exclude, the more borders you build the more you must defend to maintain your own structural integrity. We are truly our own biggest obstacle, our own greatest adversary, because though the programming we receive may come from without, it only gains power once it is internalized.
It’s a road less traveled, a road that can easily lead to misfortune, jail, ostracization, insanity or death. Yet for me at least, the ends justify the means, and I will continue until I achieve total autonomy, or die trying; because the alternative to me is a far more terrible thing.