All throughout history, there has been a neverending struggle between two implacably opposed forces. Much like good and evil themselves, human history has been characterised by an eternal struggle between an Empire that sought to conquer the world and the Nations that sought to resist. This essay elucidates.
Much as the Sun beats down from above, its rays bringing order to the Earth that receives them, so too does the Empire impose itself from above, onto the Nations that form from below.
On the world stage, the Empire is the force that seeks to subjugate all the nations. It is based around the idea of central rule, where a single leader imposes a code of laws on its subjects. The Nations are those who rise up from the soil and who self-organise based on natural similarities between members of a wider kin group.
On one level, the words democracy and republic means the same thing. But they reflect different perceptions. Democracy means rule of the masses, deriving from demos, which means people, and -cracy, which means form of rule. Republic also means rule of the masses. The difference is that democracy is a national concept, whereas republicanism is an imperial one.
The concept of democracy, in a Greek sense, is easy to understand if one if familiar with Aristotle’s Politics. In the same way that the head of a family makes decisions of behalf of their family, who gives them power, so does a chieftain make decisions on behalf of their village, a baron on behalf of his county, and a king on behalf of his nation. This is all good and well, but the bottom-up structure of every nation clashes with the top-down system imposed by the Empire.
This conflict between top-down and bottom-up systems can be seen all throughout history. In a sense, it doesn’t really matter what or where the Empire is, or whether it’s Roman, Mongol, British or American. At the centre of the Empire is the one who wields the Spear of Destiny, for they are the one who directs the course of this Empire, and the course of Empire reflects them and their will.
The two are fated to clash because the morals of the two systems are entirely different.
The moral virtues of the Empire are all about expedience. The Empire cares about control and profit. Its basic inclination is to expand. Enjoyment of life comes from glory and domination. The Empire believes that it has a moral blueprint that can serve for all human life, and therefore they’re doing the Nations (i.e. the barbarians) a favour by subjugating them. The Empire has no problem with the Big Lie.
By contrast, the moral virtues of the Nations are the same moral virtues that allow one to thrive in a state of Nature. The Nations care about the physical and mental health and strength of their peoples. Their basic inclination is to remain the same, and to enjoy life, which comes from interaction with people and places that they love, and from being at peace with God.
Alchemically speaking, it could be said that the Empire was of iron and silver while the Nations were of clay and gold. The Empire values cheap labour, willing mercenaries and the kind of science that builds artillery, battleships and railroads. The Nations value good sex, good food, being healthy and a direct spiritual connection to God and the Great Fractal.
In most cases, the desires of the Empire and the Nations are the same. Both want peace. Both want order. In most cases, they also agree on how to achieve this. Both the Empire and the Nations strive to keep their citizens fed and entertained. Their approach is, however, entirely different.
The Empire believes the state of Nature to be a state of war, and consequently declares it a good thing that the Empire imposes order. The greatest motivation of the Nations is to resist the impositions of Empire and to live a life in accordance with Nature, which they believe to be a state of peace until disturbed by Empire.
Because of this difference in approach, certain political issues cause great tensions.
Open borders seems like a great idea for the Empire, because it allows them to import cheap labour en masse to any territory they desire. If a Caribbean island starts a sugar plantation, the Empire can’t wait to import 10,000 Africans to work it. The Nations, however, hate open borders, because open borders means the destruction of all national, regional and local solidarity and culture.
The question of open borders has divided our societies into imperialists who want to import capital and workers as fast as possible, and who are pro-immigration, and nationalists who want to emphasise bonds of solidarity between kin and neighbours, and who are anti-immigration. Both sides declare the other evil, accusing one of being soulless money-worshippers and the other of being narrow-minded bigots.
The matter of religion and spirituality also causes great conflict. The desire of the Empire is to have a “Holy Land” that all of its children look to, and a single religious template into which all spiritual inquiry must be forced. The Nations, however, tend to resist this centralisation. The spirituality of the Nations tends to revolve around great local men who have achieved gnosis by discovering or developing a particular methodology.
The religion of the Empire is that which inspires them to conquer and to impose their order; the spirituality of the Nations is what which inspires them to resist and to tell the truth in the face of expedient lies. In our iteration of the world, societies are split between imperialists who usually support some form of Abrahamism, and nationalists who are more interested in direct gnosis and local traditions.
In many of the great issues of today, it’s possible to see that, fundamentally, these issues have arisen because of the conflict between the Empire and the Nations. Where it really gets tricky is that this conflict, much as the conflict between good and evil, runs through every human heart.
There are two types of people, therefore: children of the Empire, and children of the Nations. If you are a child of the Empire you probably speak English as a native language. You probably feel most at home in universities and airports. If you are a child of the Nations you might speak anything as a native language. You don’t feel home in places but in one particular place.
New Zealanders, like all children of the Empire, have a unique dilemma. The vast majority of us are raised speaking English, the Empire’s language. As such, we have a very weak national identity. Many New Zealanders are perfectly happy moving to Sydney or London and working there. There is almost no culture shock when one moves from one part of the Empire to another, but the economic opportunities may be many times greater, and so the pull is extremely strong.
Over the past century, however, a nationalist sentiment has slowly risen. This was first inspired as a reaction to the indifference with which Empire administrators treated the well-being of our soldiers in World War One. After Gallipoli and Passchendaele we came to understand that being children of the Empire was to be so much cannon fodder. Self-rule was the only way to have the requisite dignity.
Therefore, many of us suffer from divided loyalties. A line runs through the hearts of many New Zealanders: do they choose the Empire side, and emphasise the great wealth and economic opportunity that comes with being a native English speaker with an Anglosphere passport, or do they choose the Kiwi side, and emphasise loyalty with their neighbours and region?
If you enjoyed reading this essay, you can get a compilation of the Best VJMP Essays and Articles of 2018 from Amazon for Kindle or Amazon for CreateSpace (for international readers), or TradeMe (for Kiwis). A compilation of the Best VJMP Essays and Articles of 2017 is also available.