As many who had been corrupted by the image of revolution, I was happy to find the book by Gene Sharp called From Dictatorship to Democracy: A Conceptual Framework for Liberation. It is a small wonder, generally speaking, that the edition has become “a bible for color revolutions.” Sharp was very vivid and concise in describing 198 methods of non-violent opposition to tyranny. With the abundance of revolutionary theories of any hue, his book suggested specific and practical fighting methods, and it remains one of the best protest handbooks to these days.
In 2004, I witnessed the Orange Revolution in the Ukraine. It was one of those ones that could be considered "democratic" by Sharp. I still remember the air then and there, hopes and passions, the community and the victory, followed by people’s triumph, and the greeting from every corner of “the liberal world.” Gandhi was right. One could change the government without shedding blood.
However, remembering the tumultuous events of 2004, I quite distinctly remember why I never participated. While the Western world discussed the “Ukrainian miracle” and perspectives of the “young democracy,” I felt some deep alienation from the ongoing process that was not quite intelligible at that time. I wanted to be part of the revolution but it was not my revolution. Its proponents in my college, my schoolmates of yesterday, suddenly spoke to me like they never had done before, saying, “There was a time when YOU oppressed US. Now, YOU are in OUR shoes.” My language turned into the invaders’ language overnight, and I became a “Muscovite satellite.” Although I was born in the Western Ukraine considered the stronghold of the Ukrainian nationalism, it was the Orange Revolution in Kiev was my first encounter with this breed of people. I could never understand where that YOU came from, and what was wrong with the language everyone used to understand perfectly.
The logic of history is not subject to empty passions. Instead of the promised liberal utopia, the Maidan ended with the economic collapse, disintegration, and confrontation of civil identities, national disillusionment, and coma of the entire nation’s protest potential. While the revolutionary community of those events was based on the speculation with national feelings that were put into an opposition to the pro-Russian vector promoted by the puppet of the old regime, for the next several years of the triumphant Orange Power’s rule, the Ukraine demonstrated the renaissance of the right-wing radical thinking with the resultant Fascizoid consequences. Then, the Orange Power was no more, and, resulting from the peaceful election, it was replaced with the former enemies of revolution. They brought their old project of building the provincial dictatorship that no longer revolted.
The Orange Revolution history serves to prove that to overthrow a dictatorship is possible, and Sharp’s theory in fact works. However, it also reveals a problem that is far more complicated and topical. How to make a dictator never to return? When thinking about it, I came up with an idea, and I have never been tired in repeating it. Not only that, I believe this idea to be a key concept for the Loooch philosophy’s mutinous aspect. The social revolution should be preceded by the revolution in the heads. In order to change the society, a human should be changed first, meaning that the ways of his thinking must evolve. Otherwise, the post-revolutionary society will see the inevitable collective reproduction of its former dictator, and Sharp’s protest methodology will remain an obtrusive gesture on the tyranny’s conveyor belt.
A dictator is only one guise in the symbolic corpse’s memeplex. This corpse is an active information structure, a set of destructive instructions that limit the human consciousness potential, and facilitate the individual decomposition in the homogenous thoughtspace of the irrational collective.
In itself, the collective as a phenomenon stems from the human nature, and it is not the mother of repression. In its idealistic striving, the society is a Utopia with a happy ending, a necessary and dynamic commonwealth of intelligent indinomies that mediate social relations in order to solve common problems. A society becomes repressive only when it is weaved from humanments, the basically human creatures de-individualized by their group identities, and infected by the symbolic corpse.
Thus, the principal historical problem of the human civilization is the birth, existence, and reproduction of the complex cognitive virus that forces millions of people to sacrifice themselves in the name of serving illusions and phantoms, be they a substance (such as money), a human (a tsar) or an idea (god).
It is noteworthy that really, there is no tsar, god, or money. And all this is not an insidious plan developed by some secret minority, something the conspirologists are so fond of fantasizing about. Everything is only an ages-old human folly, the cold prolonged for millennia, the AIDS of history, some obtrusive virtuality, and a cognitive hologram that is basically a helminth without intelligent will of its own dwelling in the intestines of the brain. It appeared in civilization’s body as a beast attempted to think, and it survived as an archaic bacterium with an unsurpassed immunity.
The symbolic corpse has no consciousness, wills, or intelligent goals. The only thing it can do (brilliantly) is to blindly reproduce itself as exactly the same informational gibberish, a riddle without an answer. The symbolic corpse rejects the Other and the variety only reflexively. It aims at filling everything with itself without leaving any empty corners. It is an architect of the total grey canvas, and inexpressive forms. Essentially, it is creepier for a mortal human than the Death itself, for it mediates the perspective not simply to die but to die as not oneself.
Therefore, the symbolic corpse is a cognitive disease that replaces an individual autonomous consciousness with itself. If it can reproduce itself and adapt through centuries, from one generation to another, it would be only logical to look for its uterine source in the closed consistency that is forced upon us by the traditional society as its sacral ideology.
The struggle with the symbolic corpse is the fight with the traditional society in oneself, on the consciousness level. Below, there are 22 recommended strategies for the cognitive mutation to get rid of the traditional society and the symbolic corpse.
1. Boycott of any religion, denial of any church and any god; displacement of metaphysical searches, if any, into the strictly intimate asocial space.
2. Draft-dodging, evading patriotism, national and any other group identity, as well as everything destructive for the individuality, human psyche, and interpersonal relations.
3. Sexual self-realization, and experiments against all enforced norms, bans, and taboos; repudiation of all acquisitive relations; the monogamy should be understood only as an issue of individual choice, not an obligation.
4. Rejection of any coercion, and support of coercive authority of one over another.
5. Perusal of “obscene” or “amoral” books, films and other information sources frowned upon by the traditional society as cognitive handbooks.
6. Exploration of one’s own consciousness by any means, including the techno-narcotic way.
7. Development of tolerance to the Other by means of an open dialogue with the repulsive, incomprehensible, impossible, rejecting, and shocking.
8. Refusal to do any work that does not correspond to one’s individual nature.
9. Rejection of all binary oppositions; development of dialectic and critical thinking.
10. Augmentation of knowledge, education, and development of one’s intellect.
11. Refusal to be ashamed of oneself.
12. Public display of one’s individuality, self-realization, and creative work.
13. Therapy by traveling, and studies of other cultures and languages.
14. Public dreaming and development of utopic imagination.
15. Understanding the power as openness.
16. Development of feelings and emotions.
17. Refusal to consume outside of what is personally needed, in order to liberate oneself from the repressive economic dependence.
18. Perception of one’s own mistakes as sources of knowledge.
19. Cognition of new technologies as evolutionary means of human transformation.
20. Movement towards fears of the unknown.
21. Thinking on the universal scale; pleasurable conversations with planets.
22. Striving to reach variety in everything.
The above strategies can be applied in toto and selectively. Each one of them is aimed at creating the cognitive circumstances for the individuality embodying that give the social revolution subsequent to the brain metamorphosis all chances to avoid the symbolic corpse’s reproduction.