“Active or self-directed evolution, then – holistic, anthropocentric, and teleologically determined effort – are some of the terms that scholars have applied to most Russian Cosmist” (Young, p. 9)
Before I begin, I want to say that this analysis of Horse the Band isn’t to insinuate they have any connections to the right-wing. I think they’re simply storytelling and telling a story as if where a bad guys vs good guy epic. Horse the Band is an American metalcore band from Orange County, California, that became known for their 8-bit video-game influenced sounds which labeled them as Nintendocore. In personal opinion, I would call them Avant-Garde metal employing postmodern themes, such as transhumanism, simulation and simulacrum, 80s cyber and Cold War pastiche akin to the visions of William Gibson’s Neuromancer, merging high art with low art, and digitization, with the electronic synth elements serving as a device to suggest the informational overload of contemporary life.
The band does a good job of analyzing the informational overload of postmodernity, where this era is defined largely by the domination of images or symbols which creates a self-destroying and self-replicating chaotic reality. In such a state of reality it’s hard to distinguish truth (fake from real; organic from synthetic), thus bringing upon existential (nihilistic) questions of being. Horse the Band doesn’t seem to be perpetuating a sense of cosmic dread through postmodern means with ill-intent, but rather they’re musing, feeling and thinking with music to attempt to answer the old philosophical question of, “What is the meaning of life”. But they’re also just having fun.
Their album, A Natural Death, in my opinion is their magnum opus, despite, their follow-up album, Desperate Living – which is good – getting higher rankings from music critics. Math metal is arguably seen as a type of nerdy aggressive male space and I think the bands on stage antics and style has relegated them from larger audiences. It is a type of Revenge of the Nerds, Reed College weirdo or M.I.T style of metal, thus engendering possible accusations of being for suburban, garage conspiring, computer hackers in some rainy Tech corridor such as Portland or Seattle, yet, their demeanor seems ironic, self-aware and assured, and artful. This relates to the underlying theme of artistic movements such as Dada. Essentially, they act quirky as to challenge audiences or listeners not to take life too seriously, i.e., to destabilize metanarratives, which is the key tenant of postmodernism.
Postmodernism sought to challenge the stiff and empirical mindedness of Modernism of the early twentieth century. Modernism posited a belief in structuralism, the ability to know truth, behavior sciences, and made bold objective truth claims such as science will liberate humanity, or skyscraper urbanism will be the future utopia. Yet, these claims were challenged harshly after WW2 since objective truth claims were blamed for the deaths of millions of humans and all in the name of “progress”. Speaking to the Dada art movement of early twentieth-century Europe, alongside other schools such as Italian Futurism or German Bauhaus, Horse the Band’s, A Natural Death, seems in alignment with Fritz Lang’s Metropolis. Metropolis shows a future advanced urban society based on Modernist and Futurist themes, yet, the film could be argued as one of the earliest warnings of transhumanism and the film is known for its famous female Satanic robot. The fact that Fritz Lang chose a female robot seems interesting. Feminism is often at the forefront of globalist movements such as the Green Movement, or, there’s the banner call of the Future is Female. But, that future also possibly holds transhumanism. Transhumanism seems to be cross-juncture between feminism (particularly with its focus on gender as being a spectrum, not a biological axiom), the New Age movement, the Green movement, globalism, AI and IoT (Information of Things), and transgenderism, etc.
Essentially, transhumanism is related to all these topics, in that it represents a type of “inevitable progress”, and the female form of Fritz Lang’s robot and the real movement of the Future is Female – in a future that will be globally integrated with IoT – indicates the symbolic importance of femininity within this paradigm shift. In other words, femininity as presented and argued within the larger sociopolitical debate makes it synonymous with shifting, merging, androgyny, the evolutionary notion of progress, or, in alchemy language…it’s a malleable “substance”. The female form is also the window into life, so femininity has an esoteric element involving shifting, birth, renewal, etc.
A Natural Death seems to be a concept album with a linear but fuzzy storyline. It seems to involve a main female and male character through three linear storylines but all are related and the concept of time travel comes into play. One story arch deals with the violence of the American Frontier with songs such as Murder, Broken Trail, Crickets, and Rotting Horse. Another is set in the modern day such as in New York City, a club as insinuated in Sex Raptor, an occult sex ritual as insinuated in his Purple Majesty, and the Beach which seems to be the scene of a goodbye between the main male and female protagonists. The other story arch deals with the ancient past in Hyperborea or a land under threat from Hyperborea, but towards the end of the album we’re in a space travel setting akin to 2001: A Space Odyssey.
Films or books that come to mind that might have been inspirations are (1) Eyes Wide Shut, (2) 2001: A Space Odyssey, (3) Conan the Barbarian by Robert E. Howard, but also HP Lovecraft, (4) The Legend of Zelda and Mario Bros., (5) the American West, (5) the comic hero, Red Tornado – further the albums transhumanist elements, (6) and Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series where a Wild West character is central to the plot involving a tower that serves as the bridge between different realities and worlds.
The songs relating to this paper are Hyperborea, Murder, The Startling Secret of Super Sapphire, Face of Bear, New York City, His Purple Majesty, The Red Tornado, Rotting Horse, and I think we are both suffering from the same crushing metaphysical crisis. Other songs could be inserted to help construct a larger storyline, yet this paper is about the Russian, transhumanist, and/or esoteric underpinnings which reflect themselves, oddly, within real-life scientific advancement, geopolitics etc.
1. Hyperborea (which I’ll argue as being related to the Hyperborean mythos of Russian Cosmism later in this paper). Yet, within the narration and plot of the album, the song depicts a type of unnatural winter storm roll in with the lyric, “Numbness swept down from the east.”, i.e., Numbness swept down from Russia. There seems to be the first appearance of the female main character of the overall album’s plot but based in a past life or past representation. The concept of time-travel will appear later in the album, so this reference along with others from other lyrics seems to shed light that this album is largely a romantic adventure, similar to Link with Princess Zelda. “She sulks from silver towers, she could save a life.”. Towers, princesses, Princess Zelda, and Hyperborea possibly being similar to Hyrule from the game’s franchise. Yet, the male lead character in this harsh wilderness, while making references to a female in a tower (a princess or maiden), also has to tap into something equivalent to Conan the Barbarian’s Riddle of Steel. Don’t trust man,
don’t trust girl,
don’t trust animals,
trust in steel.
There seems to be antagonist, briefly referenced in the opening song with the lyric, “He says he hates us and he’s afraid to try–and I know why.” but this same character might be manifesting himself later on as the “Purple Majesty” who seems to have a type of mental grip on the female. The albums deals with notions of time-travel, reincarnation, eternal recurrence, deja vu, or even possibly, parallel universes. The album involves a romantic relationship between a male protagonist with a female who first appears, as insinuated in the first song, with being a princess in a tower, but in the modern day this female character gets involved with “His Purple Majesty” in a sex ritual, yet, both are reunited towards the end on a cosmic journey towards transcendence. The album deals with love and death, and the male character is first heard has having to tap into his inner strength with the lyric “trust in steel”, yet, he seems to be bouncing back and forth in between time, thus comes in the transhumanist, postmodern, digital effects and themes.
Interestingly, some random facts found online, Robert E. Howard, the author of Conan, had Hyperborea as the land northeast of Conan’s home of Cimmeria. Howard was also a contemporary to HP Lovecraft who incorporated some elements of that into his Chutulu mythos. Friedrich Nietzsche referred to those who followed his philosophy as “Hyperboreans” in The Antichrist, where he states, ““Let us face ourselves. We are Hyperboreans” (Goodreads, n.d.). The Cimmerians were a real Indo-European group, likely from the Steppes, who lived in near the Caucus bridgeway near Armenia (the strip of land South of Russia to Northern Iran and Northeast Turkey) and were related by proxy to the Scythian tribe, and later migrated into Europe in lands know considered Slavic but with traces in Celtic and Germanic
2. Murder seems to fast forward in time to the American frontier during an Indian raid on white settlers.
I cut open the white man
And take from his woman too
If it were up to me, all the white faces would bleed
Bleed and bleed and bleed, it’s truth
Murder, it’s murder
Murder, it’s murder
Empty plains echo with empty screams
There’s a wagon on the highland
A father and his girl, both are heading south
I tie the boy and the horses
Then you use the skills of the wolf
I don’t use a bullet
Get close enough, I can use my knife
I cut open the white man
And take from his woman too
If it were up to me, all the white faces would bleed
Red’s a better color, it’s truth
Let the blood out, let it flow
Cut the blood out, let it flow
Kill the blood out, let if flow
Like a river let it flow
Let it flow like a river
Let it flow like a river
Let if flow like a river into the sea
3. The Startling Secrets of Super Sapphire which has an almost eighteenth-century American East coast, Atlantic, and Gothic nature to it, similar to the stories of HP Lovecraft which are abound with Mayflower East Coast characters found in situations of cosmic dread. Lovecraft is credited with the founding of cosmic horror where older themes of ghouls and ghosts are replaced by physical yet beyond comprehension creatures such as aliens. Lovecraft was a cosmicist, not be confuse with cosmist, and this view held that humans are insignificant to the cosmos and there’s forces in the cosmos beyond human reason such as inter-dimensional beings. Though Lovecraft popularized science-horror or cosmic-horror, writers such as Mary Shelley with Frankenstein used natural sciences as a device within horror before Lovecraft. The song seems to depict a character, whom I consider to be a Captain Ahab figure or Old China Trade Opium Merchant from the Port of Salem (Skull and Bones connection with the Russell and Forbes families), who comes across a sacred artifact (Sacred Sapphire), only to be come possessed by it. “The sapphire is the birthstone of the month of September. The name sapphire is derived from the Latin word “saphirus” and the Greek word “sapheiros,” both meaning blue. Some believe that the name sapphire is derived from its association with the planet Saturn. The name can be roughly translated to mean “dear to the planet Saturn” in many different languages” (Jewels for Me.com, n.d.). Saturn as a planet plays a role in cosmology. The halo is obvious with its significance in culture (angelic halos, wedding bands, etc.), but to many Saturn seems to represent the “Morning Star”, i.e., Lucifer or Moloch. Saturn’s mysterious black hexagon pattern at its northern pole has also sparked many comparisons with religious objects such as the Jewish Tefillin, the six sides and six triangles of the Start of David (which is up for debate it seems but there is the quote of Amos 5:25-5:27), and the Islamic Ka’bah . Yet, Saturn when connected to Saturn Day is reflected in Roman culture, thus our modern culture, yet, it’s also reflected in Hebrew such as Shabbatai שבתאי, meaning restful one, which corresponds to the Jewish Sabbath. When Rome conquered Greece, Saturn became synonymous with Chronos, thus being attributed to Chronos’ power of time, and this time attribute is also found in the Hebrew notion of Saturn. Horse the Band’s album as seen in the song “I think we’re both suffering from the same metaphysical crisis” speaks of time-travel, event horizons, etc.
4. Face of Bear (the national animal of Russia)
days die short
at the end of autumns reign
hunger becomes ravenous
hibernation never waits
soon the silent slumber
for now October’s feast
fearless and graceful
crashing through dead leaves
DON’T FEED THE BEARS
OR THE BEARS WILL FEED ON YOU
all the forest fauna
frozen feeling fear
flinching at the moment
face to face with face of bear
all the forest creatures
vanish from sight
their betters come with hungers
that cannot be denied
A few lines downs…
DON’T FEED THE BEARS
OR THE BEARS WILL FEED ON YOU
I’ll die with the honor i choose
I’ll fight face of bear and lose
FACE TO FACE
WITH FACE OF BEAR (x6)
5. New York City. Puts a romantic plot within the storyline between a male and female character. In other song, title, The Beach, we hear a female character crying. Yet, there seems to be a reunion within New York City based on the lyrics:
We embrace in the heart of our city
On wet broken sidewalks we’re free
Further, the song seems to insinuate that Horse the Band is actually coming from a pro-Western viewpoint despite the Russian references. Towards the end of the song accompanying the lyric, “We embrace in the heart of our city. On wet broken sidewalks we’re free”, there’s effects of fireworks. Fireworks are a hallmark of American Independence and freedom. If the plot structure is truly a series of interlocking storylines of the same characters through time and space, it seems that narrator in Hyperborea is actually warning of Hyperborea and the antagonist within this song, in my opinion, might later on manifest himself as the “Purple Majesty”.
6. His Purple Majesty There seems to be something awkwardly Lolita and Crowley Sex Magick about this. There’s a lyric by a female character who states, “I’ll do anything you say”, with a coyness about it. The color purple appears a lot within Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut, and the ceremony master is wearing a purple robe. According to the Museum of Fine Arts Boston in a , during an event titled: Color Tells A Story, it was stated, “This somber palette gives way to a rainbow of neon lights as Bill’s night careens out of control, with glimpses of violet and royal purple cropping up at the most perilous moments.” The color purple represents royalty, thus the word majesty makes sense, but it also represents sexuality, magic, you could even throw “Sex Magick” in there, eroticism, mystery, etc. Going over the lyrics again the song seems to depict a ceremonial sex scene. “But she wanted. But she needed. Perfect sex in purple robes. He said, ‘Hold my hand while I touch you’, he said, ‘it will feel better that way’. She said, ‘I’ll do anything you say.'” But, later, it’s said, “she let him INSIDE even though it feels WRONG. It was all the symptoms of love but bleeding a black horror, a horror”. So… How does the Crowleyian Sex Magick of his Purple Majesty relate to Russia, let alone transhumanism? Well, one of the Russian Cosmist was Konstantin Edouardovich Tsiolkovsky (1857-1935) and a young Jack Parsons had correspondence with him and Werner Von Braun to ask for advice for his early rocket science curiosities. Parsons is known for being into the Occult and became involved with the Ordo Templi Orientis (O.T.O.) of Aleister Crowley. Sex Magick was a practice and Parson’s engaged in orgies with wife. Parsons was friends with L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of Scientology, and was associated with the science-fiction writer’s guild, Mañana Literary Society, where Robert Heinlein – the author of Starship Troopers – was also a member. In Heinlein’s Starship Troopers a future alliance called the Russo-Anglo-American Alliance is formed. So, from Horse the Band’s Russian references, particularly through this song “His Purple Majesty”, we first come to Crowley Sex Magick before coming to Crowley himself, Jack Parsons, Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, Russian Cosmism which is transhumanism, and also Robert Heinlein who speaks of the Russo-Anglo-American Alliance.
7. Red Tornado, is based on the DC Comic book hero. This song firmly links the album to transhumanism, considering Red Tornado is an android. Here are some of the lyrics:
Circuitry and sympathy
Are two different things
But they come together
In a robot who dreams
Round and round
And round he goes
Later in the song:
His emotions spin at destructive speeds
That he needs to control
The cumulonimbus inside the machine
He’s half robot and half tornado
So sad the cyborg cyclone seems
Drifting through the sky
A willful wisp of machinery
Not born but devised
Still the cyborg cyclone cries
Coolant drips from his eyes
Plastic hands on his heart
Tear him apart
Oddly, my theory, is this album channels the esoteric and technocratic struggle between East and West. It peels away the normal surface to reveal the seedlings of pseudo-science, mad scientists, and occultists who influence “above-ground” political discourse and technological development. The Western form of Technocracy as an application could be best understood through Zbigniew Brzezinski, with this book titled: Between Two Ages America’s Role in the Technocractic Future. A few quotes from this book are listed below.
“The technotronic era involves the gradual appearance of a more controlled society. Such a society would be dominated by an elite, unrestrained by traditional values. Soon it will be possible to assert almost continuous surveillance over every citizen and maintain up-to-date complete files containing even the most personal information about the citizen. These files will be subject to instantaneous retrieval by the authorities.” (Goodreads.com, n.d.)
“In the technotronic society the trend would seem to be towards the aggregation of the individual support of millions of uncoordinated citizens, easily within the reach of magnetic and attractive personalities exploiting the latest communications techniques to manipulate emotions and control reason.” (Goodreads.com, n.d.)
This might sound odd, but it’s no oddity that John Dee, the minister to Queen Elizabeth, coined the term British Empire and he himself was a magus that practiced Hermeticism and alchemy. Whether it’s the British Empire, Russian Empire, or American Empire, besides or underneath pragmatic or realist policy is a supplemental esoteric ideology (example, Masonry in regards to British Imperialism or American Manifest Destiny; Masonry or Russian Cosmism under pre-Revolutionary Russian conquests, post-Revolutionary Communism, or post-Communist State Oligarchy & Ethnic Nationalism, i.e, Aleksandr Dugin, the Hyperboreans.
The album on purpose or by accident, though seemingly without any nefarious intent, touches on the current Russia versus USA geopolitical struggle (psychological operations included) involving characters such as Aleksandr Dugin with his concept of Chaos Magick and his Eurasianist ideology, Lev Gumilev’s Neo-Eurasianism, and Valery Dumin’s Hyperborean neo-paganism. All three of the men were analyzed in the book, The Russian Cosmists, by George M. Young (2012), a professor from the University of New England.
The album seems to be a clash of both East versus West and touches upon science, Gnosticism, and esoteric thought. The tension and aggression in the album through the guttural death growls meshed with melodic instrumental solos and computer effects depicts a type of “Chaos Magick War” of factions of both East and West that are warring with each other, thus revealing a deeper, ancient, eternally reoccurring, and more sinister end-game. Yet, this end-game outside of the view of the public is arguably rigged, i.e., a Manichean Dialectic. I say rigged because there is proof of transfer of information between both East and West during the Cold such as now revealed Esalen Institute exchanges as talked about in Atlas Obscura’s piece titled, How a Fame New Age Retreat Center Helped End the Cold War, by Sarakh Laskow (2015). Even the US establishment such as the Rockefeller Dynasty (who gave seed money to both Apple and Intel via Laurence Rockefeller of Venrock Capital) spoke briefly of merging with Russia. Ivy Lee (uncle of author, William S. Burroughs), was a founding member of the Council of Foreign Relations and the Rockefeller’s media fixer. Lee favored peaceful relations with Russia which he wrote in Present-Day Russia (1928), page 214, published by Macmillan & Co., which is archived at sources such Foreign Policy magazine which was reviewed by William L. Langer, but also the University of Chicago Press Journal which is referenced in Schuman (1929) in American Journal of Sociology 35, no. 1 (Jul., 1929): 144-145.
Further, David Rockefeller opened one of the first Western bankers in Russia during the Cold War. According to JP Morgan Chase & Co. (2017), “In the 1970s, Chase added nearly 40 new branches, representative offices, affiliates, subsidiaries and joint ventures outside the United States, including two historic firsts in 1973: Chase opened a representative office in Moscow, the first presence for a U.S. bank in the Soviet Union since the 1920s” (p. 13). Further, JP Morgan Chase & Co. (2017), “In 1973, Chase Manhattan Bank Chairman David Rockefeller visited China and met with Chinese Prime Minister Chou En-Lai. Chase became the first U.S. correspondent to the Bank of China since the 1949 Chinese Revolution.” (p. 13).
The concept of “from chaos comes rebirth” is symbolic of the phoenix symbol which is often associated with Dugin’s Fourth Political Theory, but is also symbolic to the regalia of the color purple (remember the song: His Purple Majesty) which according to legend was used the Phoenicians, i.e., where the word Phoenix has possible etymological origins here. The Phoenicians were a Canaanite peoples from the Levant region near modern Lebanon, Syria and Israel, who worshipped Baal. Baal was a deity equivalent to Zeus in Greece, who controlled weather, and was represented by a Bull which signified fertility and strength. This figure seems to be the same or related to the concept of Moloch, the deity known for child sacrifice. A rendition of this Baal figure was worshiped by the ancient Hebrews as Baʿal Berith and/or El Berith, when the Jews had broken their covenant with God during the times before the ascension of Gideon. Baal thus seems to have fallen out of favor and was assigned to the role of Beelzebub.
In my novice research into Russian Cosmism and the Occultist underpinnings of Transhumanism, this album, A Natural Death, seems very on point. By Transhumanism, and one could argue transgenderism, I’m talking about alchemical-materialist-evolution based in part on the Neoplatonic notion of The One, which relates to Darwin’s Theory of Evolution which posits that all life evolved from a singular primordial source. Neoplatonism and Darwinism, though seemingly from different fields of study, e.g., metaphysics versus natural biology, yet both posit that all life came from a single source. I personally believe in evolution of some sort, but that’s not important. Darwinism sees evolution as a sign of strength and vigor required for survival, whereas Neoplatonism seems to argue that merging concepts is a way to return to the source or The One. Thus, these two ideologies are related and support each other. It could be argued that Darwin himself was an Occultist and Neoplatonist. Merging is fitness if we were to say Neoplatonic Darwinism. This is the underlying logic of transhumanism, and arguably the prepping for transhumanism with transgenderism, and it is seen as the next evolutionary step, i.e., involving the alchemical merging and manipulation of matter. From a Neoplatonic viewpoint, this seems to be the reason why Occult movements tend to focus on the dark arts or dark fashion. To them, they see what we consider evil as not being evil since its an emanation of the one, or natural doesn’t create morality, so by performing black ceremonial magic, they are in effect merging reality as they see it.
On the album there are the songs such as Hyperborea and Face of Bear, where Hyperborea relates to the Russian esoteric movement that believes Russia is the ancient mystical source of humanity, while Face of Bear relates to the national animal and symbol of Russia. With Horse the Band being called Nintendocore, the two main franchise games of Nintendo that comes to mind is Mario but also Zelda. Zelda seems important to the paper because the fictional land of Hyrule seems loosely based on a Hyperborean concept, with the Zelda franchise taking place in a European medieval setting that blends Celtic, Nordic, possible Slavic, and Anglo-Saxon Germanic elements. The Zelda franchise had the famous game, Ocarina of Time, which involves the main character Link, using a magical musical instrument to go back and forth in between time in order to awaken the Seven Sages, so the villain of the game, Ganandorf, can’t obtain the sacred Tri-Force. The lyric by Horse the Band in the second to last song on the album states, “Initiate! Instruments set to yesterday. At the Speed of Light, across empty plains of time”. Also, within Ocarina of Time, the concept of the Seven Sages seems to relate to the Seven Sages of actual Classical Antiquity which included Thales. Within the Zelda universe, especially relating to Ocarina of Time, the elemental properties of the Tri-Force itself seems to be the equivalent to the Greek concept of the arche, which were the elemental constructs the Classical thinkers used to determine the origin of matter, reality, etc. For example, Thales’ arche was water whereas for Anaximander, apeiron was the arche, which was a concept outside of matter, like the concept of ether.
The finale end song (it’s the second to last on the album) of “I think were both suffering from the same crushing metaphysical crisis” reminds me of 2001 A Space Odyssey with concepts such as transhumanist evolution through metaphysics or theoretical physics, with the main character evolving into a new form of being (the Star Child) and connecting back to a higher source, i.e., the One, or The Grand Architect of Grand Masonry.
The song starts off with “Dilation of chronal aperture in 3 2 1”, with the narrator sounding like a NASA rocket launch conductor. Chronal indicates time, whereas aperture is a window in which lights passes, such as a space through which light passes in an optical or photographic instrument, especially the variable opening by which light enters a camera. Paez (2019) states, “It is commonly accepted in energy medicine circles that a “healthy” chakra has a clockwise spin, it’s aperture is opened to the appropriate amount and has no energetic cords or other imbalances interfering with its function. The health of chakras can be controlled and improved through mental as well as physical means.” So, there seems to be an obvious Hindu Aryan mysticism via references to yogic practices of India.
Dilation of chronal aperture in 3 2 1
Initiate instruments set to yesterday!
At the speed light across empty plains of time
On a ship of jewels and gold
All of time unfolds
A seven click blip
For a fifteen-eon trip
Crafting déjà vu
Event horizon boom
Days resind and lapse
Birth after death
Tomorrow is the past
Event horizon boom
Cities shrink and fade into the ice age
Dinosaurs now new
Event horizon boom
Time is broken!
How small we compared to space and time? (played in reverse)
Time after time
Time after time
Time after time
All these machines that dream
Make me want to scream
There’s no bears or wild things
The future not what it seems
All of time is now mine
The crisis we both share
Is you are me when I was there
Time after time
It’s almost time
Time to say goodbye
At the end of time.
The song depicts a journey through space-time where the travelers – assuming a male and female (the songs Beach and His Purple Majesty involves a female character) – are experiencing déjà vu, but on the journey after seeing the future, it seems that Artificial Intelligence (the lyric: All these machines that dream, make me want to scream) have replaced all organic life (there’s no bears or wild things, the future not what it seems). Out of all the animals that are not there, the band singles out bear, which was stated previously is the animal of Russia. So, in theory, are they really saying, Russia is no longer there? The journey seems to go to the outer edges of the known the universe or towards a black hole since the term, Event Horizon, is mentioned twice. The event horizon is the boundary defining the region of space around a black hole from which nothing (not even light) can escape (Swinburne University of Technology, n.d.). It also can be used as the very outer edge of known space, indicating an expanding universe.
The song Rotting Horse with its drab lowly guitar playing, channels the sullen windswept brutality of the American frontier of the eighteen-hundreds, and this song seems to emulate the Wild West, Cowboys versus Indians, artwork on the album’s cover. Since time travel is a theme here, this period of time could have been just one of the visions or multiple realities the protagonist experienced. The repeating guitar with ominous background effects that seems to encompass both angelic choir organ keys, layered with electronic dissonance, touches upon in my opinion the temporary nature of life and the process of decay.
Russian Cosmism is effectively Russian transhumanism. It’s an umbrella of thinkers so you can’t really insinuate that all the Cosmists believed the same thing, or that they would advocate for how their ideologies have been appropriated over time. Yet, Cosmism is like Transhumanism found in the West, yet, since the West and Russia are culturally different, largely around religion, their independent transhumanist schools have notable differences. The Russian Cosmist branch of Transhumanism was inspired by (1) the introduction of Neoplatonic, Masonic, and Occultist ideas into Russia, (2) the wavering oscillation (depending on which specific Cosmists were referring to) of Traditionalism with modernist ideologies such as Marxism, and (3) from a sense of Russian Orthodox exceptionalism either in a global egalitarian “progressive” fashion or from an ethnocentric nationalism, emboldened by a ‘chip on the shoulder’ attitude towards concepts such as American Exceptionalism. Western Transhumanism, being influenced by Neoplatonism was also influenced by the socio-political and religious realities of Catholicism and Protestantism, whereas Russia was inspired or constrained by the solidarity of Orthodoxy.
It could be argued that after the schism between Catholicism and Protestantism, the West was more inclined to take on the Scientific Revolution (with modernity following), since Protestantism wasn’t purely religious, but was also a response to intellectual, economic, and personal freedoms away from the Holy See. For example, Giordano Bruno was a Dominican Friar who was a philosopher, mathematician, poet, and Hermetic Occultist. He was also a Neoplatonist and intrigued by the works of Pythagoras. His ideas, then heretical, were the possibility of life on other planets and that the universe has no true center. Bruno was later burned at the stake for concepts now considered either cannon or possible. Going back to the intellectual progression during and after the Protestant Reformation, the three concepts of intellectual, economic, and personal liberties were vital in sparking scientific secular innovation within the shift from mercantile capitalism to industrial capitalism.
Transhumanism in the West in my opinion is strongly related to the political systems of Protestant nations, as typified by the British Empire (which included the United States), and these systems are democratic, pluralist (ironically insinuating the philosophical arguments around dualism), individualist, and capitalist models. The philosophical underpinnings of Western Transhumanism is diverse spanning Continental Philosophy of German idealism of Hegel, the Hegelian criticisms of Nietzsche and his resulting extreme existentialism (which thus links to the Darwinist notion of the strongest survives); the French postmodernists which their emphasis on deconstruction, merging concepts for analysis, and analyzing post-capitalist social conditions such as expanding upon Marx’s work on alienation; the Analytical School of Britain with thinkers such as Bertrand Russell or Gilbert Ryle’s critique of Cartesian Dualism; Game Theory and American pragmatism. Continental philosophy serves as the catalyst for deconstruction and merging, whereas American pragmatism and British Imperial Analytics inspired topics such as machine-logic, the Turing Test, and Game Theory. The Occult underpinnings traveling aside these philosophies ranges from Neoplatonism, Kabbalah, Christian Qabbalah, Averroism, Zoroastrianism with concepts such as magi, i.e., magic.
Underneath all these philosophies tracing backwards people at some point would cross upon Plato, and thus the later Plotinus, who is the founder of Neoplatonism and our concept of modern metaphysics, ceremonial magic within the West, etc.
Having read the book by Young (2012), I noticed in the progenitors of the Cosmist school of that concepts such as androgyny and body enhancements appeared more than once. For example, Vladimir Solovyov, in response to the hard technocracy of Cosmist Sergei Fedorov, argued that instead of the physical resurrection of all humans as called for in Fedorov’s “Common Task”, Solovyov instead wanted a spiritual resurrection of Sophic inspiration and syzygic unity, i.e., synergy, between male and female essences. Young (2012), states, “Instead of regulating nature, whether external or internal, Solovyov views the great human task as one of incarnating divine love on a universal scale. In one his major works, The Meaning of Love, he develops the idea of a Christian androgyny that would embrace all humanity” (p. 109, para. 2); “Already within itself physical love bears the death-defeating force, the seeds of life and immortality – our task is to realize in full what now exists only as an ideal in Plato and in potential in our everyday lives. Wholeness, “all-unity”, in love means androgyny.” (Young, p. 103, para. 2); “To them he bequeathed the doctrine of sophiology, the centrality of the eternal feminine in Christian spirituality.”
Pavel Alekandrovich Florensky provided a framework for mathematical theory, semiotics, and linguistics, but also cyborgs to Cosmism, building off the autocratic technocracy of Fedorov, the androgynous sophic synergy of Solovyov, and the sophic infused political-economy of Sergei Bulgakov. Young (2012) states Florensky, ”was another Cosmist who believed that the Communist future could possibly (but not necessarily) lead to a revival of medieval objectivism, collectivism, and constructive vision, and a turning from the illusionary individualism and self-destructive atomization that had characterized prerevolutionary modernity” (p. 124), and, Florensky’s natural inclinations may have led toward a kind of figurative levitation, up and away from everyday earthly realia and into a world of Platonic realiora (Young, p. 125). Relating to back Transhumanism, Florensky speculated on early cybernetics, with Young (2012) stating, “And in a 1919 article titled, “Organoprojection”, Florensky discusses the projection of artificial organs, continuation of our bodies, to extend human capabilities throughout the cosmos. Projected organs and body parts can operate and act on the world beyond the limits of our present physical bodies. “Magic, in the circumstance, could be defined as the art of altering the limit of the body with respect to its customary location” By a continuation of flesh and machinery we can extend our organs to reach as far as we can imagine, and operations now considered magical can become routine” (p. 131-132).
The Neoplatonic concept of “The One” could also be argued as being found Konstantin Tsiolkovsky. As previously mentioned, Tsiolkovsky links to Western Occultism and Technocracy through his correspondence to a young, Jack Parson, the pioneering rocket scientist who was inspired by Aleister Crowley and The Occult. Parson has a crater on the dark side of the moon, which to me reflects a commonality between the two nations who first made it into space, the USSR and the United States. Back to Tsiolkovsky’s relationship to Neoplatonism, Young (2012) states, “An idea at the heart of most of his nontechnical writings is that of the “atom spirit” (atom-dukh) inherent in every particle of matter in the cosmos, recalling Fedorov’s idea that all matter as dust of the ancestors” (p. 151).
Further, later but fellow Cosmist, Vladimir Ivanovich Vernadsky had a Neoplatonic view of Plotinus and/or a Material Monist perception in the liking of Anaximenes to reality. “Vernadsky rejects any separation of matter from spirit, but defines all present life as “living matter” and holds that all presently nonliving matter shares with all life a fundamental unity that includes the potential to change from inert to living matter and from living matter back to inert, from being presently alive to being alive formerly and once more alive in the future – a twentieth century scientific analog to Pythagorean metempsychosis” (p. 157). Further, “Vernadsky recognized that a unified view of nature, the idea of the interconnectedness of all, has for millennia been at the heart of much religious and philosophical speculation, and so at the deepest level he found no conflict between scientific and spiritual views of the world. He noted that of all the world’s religions he had studied, the one he felt closest would be the ancient Greek hylozoistic pantheism of Thales, Anaximenes, and Heraclitus, which finds life to some degree present in all matter” (p. 157).
To understand the basic theories of Thales, Anaximenes, and Heraclitus, to name a few, I referenced Stanford’s Encyclopedia of Philosophy and Wikipedia, for the sake of time.
Thales (640 BC – 546 BC)
Anaximander (610 BC – 546 BC)
Anaximenes (586 BC – 526 BC)
Pythagoras (570BC-495 BC)
Heraclitus (535 BC-475 BC)
Plato (428 BC-427 BC?)
Plotinus (240/5 – 270 AD)
Heraclitus (610 BC-546 BC), of the Ionian School, was a pre-Socratic Greek philosopher taught by Thales (one of the Seven Sages), known as The Obscure and The Weeping Philosopher, believed in the unity of opposites and analyzed the nature of dialectics. He was committed to a unity of opposites and harmony in the world. He was most famous for his insistence on ever-present change, or flux or becoming.
Anaximenes was of the pre-Socratic Milesian School of philosophy, included Thales, Anaximander, and Anaximenes. Anaximander was the teacher of both Anaximenes and Pythagoras (yet, Pythagoras had other teachers such as Pherecydes of Syros). Anaximenes practiced Material Monism, which is a Pre-Socratic framework which believes in the physical world and all its objects as being composed of a single element. This concept of Material Monism is related to the idea of Dialectical Monism, which affirms that everything is one but the one is represented by dual manifestations.
Yet, this would also way later inspired Dialectical Materialism of Marxism where everything is comparisons of materialist distinctions such as classes, cultures, genders, etc. Yet, dialectics based in part on the Classical thinkers listed above, way before Marx, would go to inspire the overarching Illuminus thought of Renaissance Europe which thus had an effect on early democratic theories, which then fractured into the dialectic expressions of Libertarian and Marxism. Both Marxism and Libertarian thought (cousin ideologies) are arguably based from the Jacobin schism between Girondins and the radical Montagnard’s of Robespierre, with the both being aligned to Masonry (British Lodges versus the Grand Orient Lodge of France), which itself expresses Monism via the concept of the Grand Architect and Neoplatonic ritualistic ceremony to achieve “levels”. Speaking of levels, this is basic concept in video design.
Anaximenes was the first to state that substances can change form, and he also believed that the universe was in constant motion, insinuating notions of flux or evolution. Pythagoras, is known for many things such as his ideas on mathematics, communalism, asceticism, and mystical symbology such as tetractys which would inspired numerology and cryptography, but also the concept of metempsychosis which is a philosophical term in the Greek language referring to transmigration of the soul, especially its reincarnation after death. In other words, the souls in immortal and transfers to other bodies.
Platonic Realism of Plato is the philosophical position that universals or abstract objects exist objectively and outside of human intelligence. In other words, there are universals such as shapes, forms, numbers, fractals, etc., way beyond human intelligence, and in a way we’re just seeing emanations of these, and matter as we see or can understand it, aren’t the purest forms, and these purest forms are beyond reason to humans.
Later, regarding Plotinus, who’s teacher was Ammonius Saccas (of the Platonic tradition), Plotinus taught that there is a supreme, totally transcendent “One”, containing no division, multiplicity, or distinction; beyond all categories of being and non-being. His “One” “cannot be any existing thing”, nor is it merely the sum of all things (compare the Stoic doctrine of disbelief in non-material existence), but “is prior to all existents”. Plotinus identified his “One” with the concept of ‘Good’ and the principle of ‘Beauty’.
We can see an overarching theme which is the material singularity of all things, dialectics, the merging dialectics as being closer to “The One”, but also progress, flux, transfiguration, metempsychosis, reincarnation. Thus, transhumanism has (1) a current hard science aspect inspired by Darwinist evolution; (2) an esoteric tradition; (3) political support within the Illuminus roots of Libertarians and Marxists, and (4) roots within both Analytical and Continental Philosophy. Interestingly, what happens when you mix Marxism and Libertarian? You get a corporation and they’re pretty good at research and development for products instrumental in Transhumanism. Marxism serves as the social glue of the organizational culture but also its hierarchical structure, though it may imitate diversity, this diversity is often a sign of representing the the diversity of the world it is exploiting. Libertarian is where the profit above all else comes into play, but also corporations like free-trade, i.e., globalism, as it searches for new markets and strives to reduce cost especially that of labor. The fact that Marxist and Libertarians are still arguing despite not realizing their common heritage as a unified liberty movement, is simple willful ignorance solidified by concepts such as race in post-colonial nations, e.g., libertarian movement in the USA is often post-Republican white and morally conservative, which actually defies the principle of respecting others personal liberties, and the notion of free-trade actually encourages immigration. Marxist in post-colonial nations still have an affinity for material fetishism often provided by the corporations they protest.
While reading The Russian Cosmists, relating to Hyperborea it was stated, “Along with Gumilev, another prominent unorthodox scholar with at least some direct connection to the Cosmist movement is Valery Demin, a proponent of a Russian version of the “Arktos” theory designating the Hyperborean extreme north as the original homeland of the Indo-Europeans, and perhaps all other peoples. Demin’s 1997 Moscow University doctoral dissertation was titled “Philosophical Principles of Russian Cosmism,” and he is the author of more than twenty books and one hundred shorter works, including essays in Cosmist collection, about the peoples, legends, history, and prehistory of the far north” (Young, p. 229). Regarding Valery Demin, Young (2012) states, “Basing their theories on the writings of Herodotus, Pliiny, Ptolemy, and other ancient authorities, and supported by modern research including Fedorov’s speculations on the origins of civilization in the Pamir Mountains, and Bal Gannadhar Tilak’s writings on the far norther origins of the Vedas, Demin and the Hyperboreans argue that the arctic, which had a much milder climate some 40,000 years ago, was a kind of northern Shambala, or perhaps a prototype for Plato’s Atlantis; in any case, the original homeland of a happy, healthy people who lived far beyond present lifespans”.
Relating to Horse the Band with their opening song on A Natural Death called Hyperborea the work Arktos is referenced in the book by Young (2012). Looking up Arktos, I come to Arktos Publishing, which is known as the main far-right publisher in contemporary times. Arktos Publishing is known for distributing the Alekansdr Dugin’s The Fourth Political Theory, but its editor was Jason Jorjani. Jorgani was a professor at the New Jersey Institute of Technology who was fired for his association with the American Far-Right. His focus of study (his obsession) is that of Iran, which relates back to the Cosmist ideology of Sergi Fedorov, with Young (2012) stating, “The ancient Iranians, to whom Fedorov believes the Slavs are related, were continental rather than insular and peninsular in outland, land tillers rather than land seekers, and in their close relationship to the earth recognized that life is won only by constant struggle against nature. Evil, for the Zendo-Slavic peoples, is not an inescapable condition of existence, as in India, but can be overcome by concerted human effort.”
Russian Neo-Nationalism links to this esoteric Iranian link, with Young (2012) stating, “George Vendasky, for example, sees Russian pre-Christian pagan religion as a development from both Zoroastrianism and Mithraism. And Aleksandr Dugin and other current Russian neo-Eurasianists and neonationalists point to ancient Russia’s religious and cultural kinship with ancient Iran to support their calls for a new Russo-Iranian Eurasian continental alliance to counter NATO power and culture”. (p. 83).
Zoroastrianism was the religion of Iran; Jason Jorjani of the Alt-Right is a scholar of Iran via Arktos Publishing and frequently appears on New Thinking Allowed, a YouTube show, hosted by Jeffrey Mishlove (the only person to get a paranormal doctorate from UC Berkley); Iran is synonymous with the word Aryan and the concept of Aryan links the Eurasian landmass from Europe, Hindu India, the Western Chinese desert and Tibet. This region is considered the Grand Chessboard as stated by Zbigniew Brzezinski, with the USA, Russia, and China vying for supremacy in the resource rich region, thus, this is why esoteric ideology often accompanies militaristic expansionism, e.g., Nazis appropriating the Swastika and sending missions to Tibet, Dugin with his Eurasianism, etc.
Indo-European studies often correlates to the Alt-Right and past regimes such as the Nazis, but also Cosmist as revealed by Young (20120; Iran is within the grand vision of Aleksandr Dugin’s Eurasianist ambitions; and the band Horse the Band (ironic since the horse was likely first domesticated by peoples of the Steppes) has Russian references in songs such as Face of Bear and Hyperborea, with the later being a real “Grand Origin” movement based on Russian nationalism.
Frederick L. Schuman, “Present-Day Russia. Ivy Lee,” American Journal of Sociology 35, no. 1 (Jul., 1929): 144-145.
Goodreads.com. (n.d.). Between Two Ages Quotes by Zbigniew Brzezinski. Retreieve December 22, 2019, from https://www.goodreads.com/work/quotes/3269714-between-two-ages.
Graham, D. W. (2019, September 3). Heraclitus. Retrieved December 23, 2019, from https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/heraclitus/.
JPMorgan Chase & Co. (2017, April 12). The History of JPMorgan Chase & Co.: 200 Years of Leadership in Banking. Retrieved November 29, 2019, from https://web.archive.org/web/20170412231822/https://www.jpmorganchase.com/corporate/About-JPMC/document/shorthistory.pdf.
Paez, P. (2019, August 22). Posture & Chakras. Retrieved December 22, 2019, from https://www.chakras.info/posture-and-chakras/
Swinburne University of Technology (n.d.). Event Horizon: COSMOS. Retrieved December 22, 2019, from http://astronomy.swin.edu.au/cosmos/E/Event Horizon
Young, G. M. (2012). The Russian cosmists: the esoteric futurism of Nikolai Fedorov and his followers. Oxford: Oxford University Press.