By Peter Middleton

Pope Benedict XVI recently called for more ‘silence’ and ‘reflection’ in today’s world:

Pope Benedict is asking people to stop amid the noise and haste and listen to the sounds of silence in life.

Benedict dedicated the theme of his message for the Catholic Church’s World Day of Communication to the relationship between silence and words.

 ‘Silence is an integral element of communication; in its absence, words rich in content cannot exist,’ he said in the message.

‘In silence, we are better able to listen to and understand ourselves; ideas come to birth and acquire depth; we understand with greater clarity what it is we want to say and what we expect from others; and we choose how to express ourselves,’ he said.

Benedict, who is a shy and quiet man himself, said that today ‘silence is a precious commodity’ in a world with a ‘surcharge of stimuli and data’.

 ‘It is often in silence, for example, that we observe the most authentic communication taking place between people who are in love: gestures, facial expressions and body language are signs by which they reveal themselves to each other,’ he said.

 Joy, anxiety, and suffering can all be communicated in silence, sometimes more powerfully than with words and silence often gives people a chance to listen – to God, to themselves and to others.

 In short, the Pope is asking everyone to turn down the noise, reflect, evaluate and analyse.

 ‘For this to happen, it is necessary to develop an appropriate environment, a kind of ‘eco-system’ that maintains a just equilibrium between silence, words, images and sounds,’ he said. [‘Shhhh… Pope appeals for world to stop, listen and enjoy the sound of silence’, The Daily Mail, 24/1/2012].

Why is it, for instance, that cities like Melbourne and Sydney – cities in one of the richest countries in the world, with the best standard of living – are so ugly? Why do the people seem so pinched and frustrated? (One can tell a lot from someone else’s body language: one can tell what they’re feeling and thinking. My observations are based on my everyday experience with most working Melbournites). One can blame Facebook, Twitter, mobile phones, SMS-texting; as well as that, there are crowds. (On that note, quite a few economists and demographers see crowds, population increase and immigration as being beneficial to ‘the economy’ and ‘growth’: perhaps they are – but they are not beneficial to human beings).

Really, though, I put it down to at least three reasons.

The first is cars. Today’s cities, in the West and elsewhere, are built on top of highways, throughways and parking lots. In Melbourne CBD, cars can come out at pedestrians (viz., human beings) at all four directions: one can be walking along a footpath (a sidewalk, to Americans) and suddenly be barged into a car emerging from the entrance to a fifty-floor carpark building, or perhaps a little alleyway (which the driver has decided, sneakily, to drive his car along). On top of that, cars have the right to go through traffic lights, even when pedestrians are crossing. Often, even when crossing the (always busy) road at a green ‘go’ signal, one risks being run down by an impatient driver. So one can’t walk across the road; one has to dash – for one’s life.

The modern city is designed for cars, not human beings. (To a lesser extent, it’s also designed for bicycles and motorbikes). We can’t do without cars, of course. But is it possible to live in a city without them? Of course it is.

The second reason for our spiritual discontent is, of course, immigration. One particular sub-class of immigrant, which I won’t name here (out of political correctness), almost always dresses shabbily, but flaunts expensive mobile phones – which on which the male of that sub-class jibber-jabbers, for hours, to his brethren back in his home country. In the ‘old’ Australia, certain classes of immigrant used to be, well, quiet; but now that they are congregating here, in huge numbers, they tend to be unrestrained, noisy, boisterous among their own kind. (Certainly, we humans can be uninhibited when part of a large group). As these immigrants increase and increase, the average Aussie working man or woman, commuting for long hours into the city, and competing for jobs, housing or space on a train against these immigrants, grins and bears it. (Perhaps, out of some misplaced sense of guilt, he makes an effort to be nice to them; or maybe he makes the effort because of his corporate code of conduct demands it). He knows that nothing can be done about it. Since John Howard’s fourth term (2004-2007), Australia has been on the death-march, immigration-wise, bringing in six-figure numbers of immigrants per year. Neither Gillard, Abbott or the Greens will do a thing about it: and why should they – the policy is part of their ideology. The outlook is grim. All the Australian can do – and this cuts across class, and income – is commute to work each day on the overcrowded morning train, and try and read his Kindle or IPhone app, and try and avoid having an elbow shoved in his face.

The third reason, for the absence of calm in our lives, is: animals. As a society which (like all human societies for the past million years or so) exploits, kills, tortures and consumes animals, we are generating (what a hippie would call) ‘bad karma’ for ourselves. In fact, were I an occultist type, I would say that the sum of collective animal suffering, in our cities and suburbs, generates ‘psychic waves’ which disturbs the ‘psychic ether’. Our survival and well-being, in the 21st century, doesn’t depend on hurting, killing and eating animals: for an Eskimo in his igloo, or Grizzly Adams in his mountain shack, one has to kill animals to survive; in Melbourne, Sydney, New York, London, Berlin, one doesn’t.

Aside from that, there are the health effects – physical and mental – of eating meat and dairy. No real scientific evidence has emerged to show that eating meat, like smoking, is bad for you; all the same, it is my conviction that it is – and ‘scientific studies’ will show this, over time.

So, there is my formula for improving our cities, and our lives: abolish meat (and other animal products); abolish cars; abolish immigration. I call it the A-A-A plan (this title has been inspired by the Republican candidate for the US presidency, Herman Cain, and his 9-9-9 plan). I myself am willing to be flexible when it comes to implementing this plan: there may be more than one path towards it. Possibly, some sort of compromise is necessary. We can have animal products, immigrants, and cars, outside of our cities – in the outer suburbs, for instance (where, coincidentally, many of our immigrants live). But our cities (and this includes cities outside of Australia) will be oases of no meat, no cars and no immigration.

In order to implement the plan, we must be stern: no compromises. E.g., we can’t allow meat into our cities for ‘special occasions’; neither can we give immigrants day passes on weekends (or internal ‘work visas’, allowing them to work in the cities and then go home to the outer suburbs). That would defeat the purpose. (I am in favour of making exceptions for delivery trucks, etc., in our cities. It’s not that we can’t live, today, without cars: it’s that we don’t have to live, work and shop, on parking lots and highways).

Following the Triple-A plan would give Western man – peace of mind. He would find that such an environment gives him inner calm, stillness, the chance to develop his soul. I call this ‘interiority’: the development of one’s inner self, one’s soul. One can’t develop interiority when one is being badgered, 24 hours a day, by cars, hordes of scowling immigrants, or the sensation of döner kebabs and Hungry Jacks doing damage to one’s body (and that’s not counting the stink of these fast food establishments – also the unpleasant odour of seafood, emanating from Asian restaurants). Melbourne and Sydney would become like Venice, or the car-free parts of Paris, Athens, Stockholm, Amsterdam and Vienna (to name a few European cities) which Western man spends a fortune on, each year, visiting. (Are Australian and American tourists attracted to these cities because of the cultural affinity they feel for them? Or is it the car-free environment? The answer is, both).

I will say, as a caveat, that the A-A-A plan isn’t an environmentalist one. Environmentalists, of course, tend to be anti-car; some environmentalists even are anti-population growth. There are vegans who believed that, among the reasons for getting rid of meat consumption, is ‘global warming’: cattle-farming leads to huge increases in the number of cows, and cow flatulence and excrement brings about global warming – which, as we know will melt the polar ice-caps and drown us all in a flood of Biblical proportions. (I think, here, that vegans are trying to give legitimacy to their ideas by latching on to the environmentalist movement – a tactical error, in my view). I am not an environmentalist; I simply believe that suffering, in our day and age, and in our advanced Western societies, is unnecessary. As well as that, I believe that the West’s cities and major population centres should be places of quiet reflection and contemplation, as we go about work in our everyday lives, and enjoyment.

This is important for the nationalists, because, while we in the movement recognise the danger of immigration – the threat to our national existence, our culture, our civilisation, our way of life – we never ask ourselves the question, ‘Why is our way of life worth preserving?’. In our car-dominated suburbs, we forbid our own children from playing in the street, out of fear of being knocked down. In North America, we wreck our bodies through the consumption of meat and through the excessive consumption of sugar products (obesity, and diabetes, is a growing problem in North America, as is the excessive consumption of anti-depressants which may, in turn, induce psychotic effects). The American TV shows, Breaking Bad and Big Love illustrate the white man’s ‘suburban hell’ brilliantly; and the neighbourhoods (which are mostly white and ethnically-homogeneous in these TV shows) aren’t so different from the whiter suburbs in Melbourne, Sydney and Perth.

We whites, in short, have devised a trap for ourselves. I often see a kind of discontent on the faces of immigrant families, when I pass them in the street. I wonder if the source of that discontent is disillusionment with their lives here in Australia: the feeling that they have been sold a false bill of goods. Not only does the white man not like them very much (certain immigrant groups are always complaining, vocally, of how Australians are “racist” and how Australians “discriminate” against them); but perhaps the white man’s life isn’t so good, after all. They have the accouterments of the white Australian – a massive mortgage, a mobile phone, middle-class welfare payments for having children, the dreadful morning and evening commute, the chance to shop at an outer-suburban mall on weekends – but this life really isn’t so great.

In a way, the hippies and counter-cultural rebels of the sixties were right: what use is the wealth and prosperity of the West when the white man forgoes his soul? It’s a timeless question, and a spiritual one. But it is more pertinent than ever, in this increasingly noisy, crowded and uncomfortable civilisation – the civilisation of ‘becoming’, and not ‘being’.

How right he is. Certainly, there is a lack of opportunity for contemplation, reflection and the development of inner spirituality in today’s world. Ours is not a still world, a calm world; it doesn’t have the characteristics of what Evola calls ‘being’; instead, it is a world of ‘becoming’ – endless, transitory motion.

2 Responses to Nationalist Cities of the Future and the A-A-A plan

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