Zion Canyon, as seen from Angels Landing.
Angels Landing: a 454 m tall rock in Utah’s Zion Canyon. Myself, Aaron Clarey, Chris Bechtloff, and Matt Forney (as well as a couple of readers) decided to scale this peak last week, and it’s one of the more enjoyable hikes I’ve been on. The countryside is gorgeous, and the last third of the trip is on a 45° angle, a dangerous and challenging jaunt which has killed four people in the past decade.
But the best part of hiking isn’t the terrain you go over; it’s the people you meet along the way.
“A better class of people,” as Aaron puts it. There’s no garbage to be found on the mountain – maybe the occasional wrapper that fell out of somebody’s pocket, but that’s quickly removed by another hiker. Decency and openness in all of the faces you see. People who have the gumption to commit to such an exhausting hike, and whose physical bodies – while not necessarily ‘model-skinny’ – are in solid form. More to the point, it’s an escape from the massed-society of the day-to-day.
In the massed-society, demographics are destiny. Most folks have auto-objectified themselves, following scripts laid out by cynical marketers, and you can see the same patterns repeating themselves, time and time again, as the masses choose security over freedom. Security of thought: behave just like everybody else, and nobody can blame you when the whole thing goes belly-up. A smart attitude if you work for the corporations, but as a philosophy of life? No wonder we’re in the straights that we’re in.
Massed-society is nothing but sexual/racial politics; it is an internalized Marxist theory where different groups within the society struggle against one another. “Diversity+Proximity=Warfare”, “Feminism is destroying marriage”, and all these other truisms that honest writers write about. These pervasive social ills which result when the upper class turns away from promoting virtue, and instead seeks out progressive means of exploiting their charges. The results are the self-hating Whites, the benighted Feminists, the multi-culti Jews, the impoverished Blacks, and all of the other brand-new special interest groups that have been manufactured since this piece was published. Most people are desperate to find their group, to purchase their identity at Hot Topic, and engage in “political action” which is nihilistic to the core. As for myself? I have no interest in joining any political movements, but that hardly matters. As Pericles said, “Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn’t mean politics won’t take an interest in you.”
Which is why I find the mountain so refreshing.
Black fathers, Chinese grandmothers, young women, German tourists – on the mountain the group politics melt away. A better class of people hike up mountains, and the absurdity of the political game stands out for what it is. You’re surrounded by real, live, thinking Human Beings – not the soulless automatons who predominate in other areas. Once you’ve climbed the mountain, there’s no need to imagine a better world; for a brief time you’ve lived in it.
This got me to thinking, surrounded by my fellow writers as I was: if we could live in this better world every day – if there weren’t a constant stream of nonsense being transmitted 24/7, if people lived their lives for virtue rather than venal pleasure, if strategic long-term planning predominated over short-term short-sightedness – what would us writers be doing with our time?
I think we would still be writers… but we would no longer be weighed down by the ceaseless idiocy that comes from the chattering classes.
As the Christians like to say, this is a fallen world. Even if we can envision a better world, we must continue to operate in this one. This whole article is essentially an attack on the moral degenerates – what might I have written if such creatures didn’t exist? – and yet, it is a good article (I hope). It’s sad to think about how many man-hours have been spent battling feminism. Not a waste, exactly – preaching the Truth is never a waste of time – but if we didn’t have to struggle with such caricatures of humanity, what might we have been accomplishing instead?
Go climb a mountain, folks. The feat itself is its own reward – there’s nothing like the euphoria of conquering such a thing – but the best part is the sense of hope you’ll feel. Seeing people along the way who are like you, who are morally courageous and loving, who belong in a better world than this one.
This world might be fallen, and yet there are some who walk in the light.
More pictures from the hike.