Sunday, April 2, 2017

Commentary on Why People Want the Apocalypse

       Yesterday, I had posted a video from Canadian Prepper on why people, unconsciously, want the Apocalypse. Using Freud's psycho-sexual theories of psychology (which has some significant problems as a theory), the Canadian Prepper attempts to explain that many preppers subconsciously look forward to the Apocalypse seeking greater freedom.

       However, the desire for more freedom may come from desires different than seeking greater license to do what one wants. For instance, "freedom," in the sense of simply being let alone, is not the same as seeking license to do what one wants to do because, by definition, being let alone imposes mutual restrictions on people within a society: just as one seeks to be relieved of being imposed upon by others, one is also constrained from imposing one's will on another. This, of course, directly contradicts a Freudian explanation based on seeking greater license.

       I could make reference to another reproductive theory--r/K theory--which could also explain a subconscious desire for the apocalypse. Under this theory, there are two general reproductive strategies:
Reproductive-rate, or “r,” strategists such as fish produce numerous offspring, few of whom survive. Across species, the r strategy associates with lower intelligence, greater investment in reproduction than in postnatal care, short gestation periods, an accelerated life history,opportunistic feeding, little interindividual cooperation, lax social structure, and boom or bust population cycles. Carrying-capacity, or “K,” strategists, typically large mammals, produce a few offspring in widely spaced litters and care for them long after birth. The K strategy associates with higher intelligence, regular feeding habits, pair-bonding, cooperation, complex social structure, and longevity.
The Anonymous Conservative writes extensively on this theory (even having published a book using this theory to explain political differences and conflict). But, essentially, r and K strategies are present within human populations; and periods when resources seemingly exist without limit, such as during this current time of great prosperity, tend to favor the r strategy. During such times, the r-strategist will constantly seek to undermine K behavior in order to favor their own reproductive strategy. However, as the period of prosperity comes to a close and resources begin to constrict, it is impossible to maintain the r-strategy. There will be conflict between r-strategist (and their proxies) and K-strategists within a society or civilization as resources constrict, resulting in a general shift of the population back to K-strategists. Anonymous Conservative refers to this event as the K-shift.

       Casting this into a religious context, it is apparent that the r strategy, through its lax morals and anything goes attitude, is antithetical to the values taught by the great religions, particularly Christianity.  In fact, many of the virtues to be practiced in Christianity emphasize "pair-bonding, cooperation, complex social structure, and longevity."

       Looking at society and culture today from a purely Christian prospective, it is self-evident that society is in moral decline. In fact, we are reaching a point where it is realistic to say that the only solution (which is, in fact, what is outlined in Revelation) is something similar to the Great Flood: a physical purging of the wicked from the population. However, as I have noted before, the purge will not largely be at the hands of the righteous, but will be the result of God meting out his justice in a flurry of war, pestilence, and natural disasters. Most of the wicked will die at the hands of the wicked. Hearkening back to r/K theory, it could be said that the r-select will die at the hands of the other r-select and their proxies and minions.

       The point of all of this is that there are likely a large number of preppers that subconsciously (or even consciously) look forward to the Apocalypse not as something that brings freedom as defined by Freud (i.e., free license; Freud was a great proponent of the r-strategy), but because it represents a purge or reset. I personally believe that the increased interest in prepping is because a larger number of people realize that the present situation--political, social, religious, economic, environmental, what have you--is increasingly untenable. They are preparing because they recognize that societal and economic upheaval is inevitable. But between that realization and the occurrence there is a great tension due to the uncertainty of when and how this upheaval will begin and proceed. Most humans desire certainty. It is only natural, then, that many would subconsciously desire that the tension end, and the Apocalypse begin. And, from a purely religious perspective, if we believe that the Apocalypse will usher in the Kingdom of God, it is only natural that we should prefer that Christ return to establish His kingdom now, rather than tarry.

       Thus, there is no need to seek recourse to a Marxist theory of psychology such as advanced by Freud, or a desire for chaos and anarchy, to explain why preppers may desire the Apocalypse.

Update (4/5/2017): I should add that I don't see Canadian Prepper as being completely wrong: look at forums on line or talk to enough people, and you certainly come across the anarchist who simply wants to be a law unto themselves a la Mad Max. My point, rather, is that doesn't explain why most, or even many, people might yearn for the Apocalypse.

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