The Rise of the Dream-State:………………….

Long ago — at least half a century — when mastodons roamed the boreal uplands of Vermont, and the commodious Checker cab ruled the streets of Manhattan, and President Kennedy met with leaders of newly-minted tropical nations who wore bone ornaments in their facial parts, a twelve-year-old boy named Jeff Greenaway was sent away from home for the full eight week summer session to Camp Timahoe, as had been the case for five previous summers.

Camp Timahoe, a boys-only establishment, was located in a particularly remote northeastern quadrant of the Green Mountain State eleven miles away from the mill town of Lost Indian. Getting there required an overnight sleeper train ride from Grand Central Station 320 miles clear up to St. Johnsbury, near the Canadian border, and then, the next morning, an additional hour ride in the old war surplus army truck that was the camp’s main bulk conveyance for boys.

Camp Timahoe was the life project of the magnetic Murray Horvath, who bought the eighty-acre parcel in the depths of the Great Depression from a distressed Utopian religious group called the Brothers of the Practical Arts. They had gone broke making luxury wooden furniture in the manner of William Morris, their specialty being the rather high-priced chair they called the Lumbar Hygiene Recliner.

If you suppose for a moment that Jeff Greenaway was despondent about being cast out of his home on 79th Street for two months you would be most mistaken. In fact, he was delirious to be shipped off to “the country,” which was his mother’s term for any place where you could not buy a Charlotte Russe inside a five-minute walk. He barely tolerated the city during the cold months of the year, with its meager offerings of activities for boys — the natural history museum, the planetarium, the Central Park Zoo, the movies — and to him the very idea of a whole summer in the city was like unto a term in the penitentiary, even a kind of premature death….

ABOUT JAMES HOWARD KUNSTLER

James Howard Kunstler is the author of many books including (non-fiction) The Geography of Nowhere, The City in Mind: Notes on the Urban Condition, Home from Nowhere, The Long Emergency, and Too Much Magic: Wishful Thinking, Technology and the Fate of the Nation. His novels include World Made By Hand, The Witch of Hebron, Maggie Darling — A Modern Romance, The Halloween Ball, an Embarrassment of Riches, and many others. He has published three novellas with Water Street Press: Manhattan Gothic, A Christmas Orphan, and The Flight of Mehetabel.http://kunstler.com

Atrenchant, brave, and important essay by Auticulture blogger, Jasun Horsley on the cultural mystifications of the popular transgender meme, and its role in the pernicious identity politics of our time.

Click link below for Part 1 in full (Parts 2 and 3 to follow):

The Rise of the Dream-State: Trans Agendas, Gender Confusion, Identity & Desire (Part 1 of 3)

Part 2:  Transhumanism, Postgenderism, Brain-Centricism, Psychic Fragmentation

Part 3Trans-Culture, Paraphilias, Non-Duality, & Corporate Cures for Alienation


Excerpt:

The transgender question spans the whole spectrum of human interest, from psychological to biological, social to cultural, religious to technological, political to spiritual. It would be hard to conceive of a hotter topic — or button — than the question of when — or if  — a man becomes a woman, and vice versa. Wrapped up inside this question is a still deeper one of what makes a human being a human being, what constitutes personal identity, and how much identity is or can be made subject to our desire, and vice versa. Among the countless lesser questions which the subject raises, here are a sample few, some (though probably not all) of which I will address in the following exploration.

1) The question of biological sex and social gender roles

2) The question of possible causes for transgenderism or gender confusion

3) The question of what possible outside interests the “trans agenda” may be serving, whether corporate, military, governmental, ideological, or otherwise

4) The question of how transgenderism affects women and their position in society

5) The question of how it affects men and their position in society

6) The question of how transgenderism overlaps with/is compatible with transhumanism

7) The question of how children are being affected and possibly endangered by transgenderism as a social trend

8) The question of how transgender individuals are being discriminated against and abused in society

9) The question of class and privilege, and how transgender individuals may be themselves practicing discrimination and abuse

10) The question of whether ideology can be seen as a counter-measure or corrective to biology and psychology

11) The question of whether identity has any actual validity outside of group think and social constructs designed to control us and suppress our life force

12) The question of social and possibly biological anomalies within a community or species

13) The question of group identity and scapegoating

ABOUT JAMES HOWARD KUNSTLER

James Howard Kunstler is the author of many books including (non-fiction) The Geography of Nowhere, The City in Mind: Notes on the Urban Condition, Home from Nowhere, The Long Emergency, and Too Much Magic: Wishful Thinking, Technology and the Fate of the Nation. His novels include World Made By Hand, The Witch of Hebron, Maggie Darling — A Modern Romance, The Halloween Ball, an Embarrassment of Riches, and many others. He has published three novellas with Water Street Press: Manhattan Gothic, A Christmas Orphan, and The Flight of Mehetabel.

The Rise of the Dream-State: Trans Agendas, Gender Confusion, Identity & Desire (Part 1 of 3)

All 3 parts as PDF

“In this fascinating exploration of the cultural models of manhood, When Men Are Women examines the unique world of the nomadic Gabra people, a camel-herding society in northern Kenya. Gabra men denigrate women and feminine things, yet regard their most prestigious men as women. As they grow older, all Gabra men become d’abella, or ritual experts, who have feminine identities. Wood’s study draws from structuralism, psychoanalytic theory, and anthropology to probe the meaning of opposition and ambivalence in Gabra society. When Men Are Women provides a multifaceted view of gender as a cultural construction independent of sex, but nevertheless fundamentally related to it. By turning men into women, the Gabra confront the dilemmas and ambiguities of social life. Wood demonstrates that the Gabra can provide illuminating insight into our own culture’s understanding of gender and its function in society.”
–Publisher’s description

The transgender question spans the whole spectrum of human interest, from psychological to biological, social to cultural, religious to technological, political to spiritual. It would be hard to conceive of a hotter topic–or button–than the question of when–or if –a man becomes a woman, and vice versa. Wrapped up inside this question is a still deeper one of what makes a human being a human being, what constitutes personal identity, and how much identity is or can be made subject to our desire, and vice versa. Among the countless lesser questions which the subject raises, here are a sample few, some (though probably not all) of which I will address in the following exploration.

1) The question of biological sex and social gender roles

2) The question of possible causes for transgenderism or gender confusion

3) The question of what possible outside interests the “trans agenda” may be serving, whether corporate, military, governmental, ideological, or otherwise

4) The question of how transgenderism affects women and their position in society

5) The question of how it affects men and their position in society

6) The question of how transgenderism overlaps with/is compatible with transhumanism

7) The question of how children are being affected and possibly endangered by transgenderism as a social trend

8) The question of how transgender individuals are being discriminated against and abused in society

9) The question of class and privilege, and how transgender individuals may be themselves practicing discrimination and abuse

10) The question of whether ideology can be seen as a counter-measure or corrective to biology and psychology

11) The question of whether identity has any actual validity outside of group think and social constructs designed to control us and suppress our life force

12) The question of social and possibly biological anomalies within a community or species

13) The question of group identity and scapegoating

And so on.

Before we get into some of these questions, a few examples of the repercussions and manifestations of “transgenderism” in western society, in the 21st century, are necessary to set the scene. This is from “Rise in transgender children puts British primary schools under pressure,” 13 Jul, 2016:

“UK primary schools are attempting to enforce ‘trans-inclusive environments and curricula’ as the number of British children who want to change their gender is at an all-time high. British demand for sex change procedures booming. England’s only center for trans children and adolescents, the Tavistock Clinic, says the number of British children who want to change their gender has doubled in six months. According to the Guardian, the clinic says it is under huge pressure, with many of the referrals involving children under the age of 10, including one three-year-old and 12 four-year-olds, the Guardian reports. Schools are responding to the increasing numbers by creating ‘new gender neutral environments’ and holding ‘transgender days’ to encourage pupils to think about gender fluidity.”

This is from the UK Daily Mail, 30 July 2016, “March of the male mums”:

“Women having sex changes on the NHS are being given free fertility treatment so they can have babies after they become men. At least three British men who were born female are ‘on the brink’ of becoming parents using IVF techniques, according to a top doctor. And dozens more are now having their eggs frozen at NHS clinics before undergoing surgery or hormone therapy to switch sex.”

Trans individuals meanwhile are surprisingly well-represented (media-wise at least) in the military: “Abi Austen became the first British Army officer to transition from a man to a woman and is now the world’s first transgender foreign correspondent, featuring in a new documentary this week which sees her return to old territory in Afghanistan.” According to a Wikipedia page “Transgender people and military service,” “It is estimated as of 2014 that there are approximately 15,500 transgender individuals either serving on active duty or in the National Guard or Army Reserve forces within the U.S. Military. … A current issue for the transgender population is the use of military medical insurance to transition from one gender to another.”

The most significant social subset for a budding new identity movement is of course children. Here are few examples of how rapidly this new-old social phenomenon is being incorporated into the ideological, educational, and medical framework. From “Children could be taught about transgender issues using penguin story books”:

“The Gender Identity and Research and Education Society has called on schools to teach their children about trans issues by using the Penguin Land stories, which feature adult penguins reassuring younger penguins about transitioning. . . . In evidence to the committee, the society said: ‘The numbers of very young children transitioning in primary school are increasing rapidly, so information and reassurance needs to be given at the earliest stage. . . . The Gender Identity Research and Education Society also accused the Department for Education of not doing enough to promote transgender issues, and claimed that the concept of gender transitioning should be ‘included at all levels of the syllabus.’”

From the Daily Mail, Dec 2015:

“An eight-year-old pupil who was born female is locked in a battle with a primary school where staff are refusing to accept the child’s request to be treated as a boy. The school is one of more than a dozen across Britain facing a potential legal challenge for stopping pupils from changing their gender. Another pupil, aged 13, is at an all-girls school but now identifies as a boy, yet staff insist that wearing a skirt is obligatory as uniform policy.”

And from January 2017:

“Don’t call pregnant patients ‘mothers’: Doctors are banned from using the word over fears it will upset those who are transgender. Official guidelines issued by the British Medical Association says mothers-to-be-should be referred to as ‘pregnant people.’ The move aims to avoid offending and alienating transgender parents. The advice came in a 14-page booklet titled A Guide To Effective Communication: Inclusive Language In The Workplace.”

Also from the Mail, April 2017:

“Students lose marks for using ‘he’: Universities penalise undergraduates for ‘offensive’ gender phrases in essays and exams. Institutions are cracking down on the use of ‘offensive’ gender phrases. The terms ‘mankind,’ ‘manpower’ and ‘manmade’ are frowned upon. Now University of Hull is saying use of such language can impact marks.”

The following comes from an article written in November 2015, “7-year-old ‘trans activist’ used in campaign by Transgender Europe, a German NGO partially funded by US State Department”:

“President Obama issued a directive in December 2011 to heads of executive branch agencies (which would include the US Department of State): ‘I am deeply concerned by the violence and discrimination targeting LGBT persons around the world whether it is passing laws that criminalize LGBT status, beating citizens simply for joining peaceful LGBT pride celebrations, or killing men, women, and children for their perceived sexual orientation.’. . .  Pursuant to the memorandum, the Global Equality Fund was established as a funding mechanism, ‘a collaborative effort led by the U.S. Department of State, bridging government, companies and NGOs with the objective of empowering LGBT persons to live freely and without discrimination.’”

As part of this humanitarian agenda, a seven-year-old boy was selected as a figurehead and presented in a 90 second video:

From the same article:

“What is the 7-year-old trans activist being used to promote? The ‘depathologisation’ of trans people. On its website, TGEU ‘calls on the World Health Organisation and governments to ensure that gender variant children are not labelled as sick.’. . . The Depathologisation Resources page links to this proposal by the GATE working group, which argues for abolishing the ‘gender incongruence’ diagnosis being considered for the next version of the international diagnosis codes (ICD-11). . . .  depathologizing appears to mean dumping any ‘disorder’ diagnosis and just giving trans-identified people whatever they want. . . . Yet the very document TGEU uses in their depathologisation campaign states that the majority of these kids will desist and perhaps grow up to be gay or lesbian adults. That there should not be a ‘presumption’ that they are transgender.

“In addition, there is a body of evidence, originating with and continuing to this day, from the Dutch team who pioneered pediatric transition, indicating that social transition can be harmful. It can lock a child into a transgender identity and make it more difficult for a child to ‘desist.’ Not only that: Being a social media star and receiving plaudits from parents and other important adults for conforming to gender stereotypes is a powerful incentive and reward. And this particular child has had a law dedicated to him. Can anyone think it would be possible for him to change his mind, after all that? . . . . Transgender Europe operates campaigns—partially funded by me and other Americans–that promote the idea that a boy who plays with fairy dolls and wears pink dresses is actually a girl who should be ‘socially transitioned’ before the world on YouTube and Facebook, defined as transgender, and who, at puberty, will be ready for all the medical services that money (and the taxpayer) can provide.”

Lastly, this is from Business Insider December 2016, “Demand for transgender medical care is exploding”:

“The youngest patients receive no medical interventions, just counseling. Olson-Kennedy describes one 18-month-old, born a girl, who understood her gender before her grammar. ‘I a boy,’ she repeatedly told her parents. Many young children who experiment with gender roles end up reverting to their birth gender. But when the gender discomfort persists into adolescence, said Olson-Kennedy, it’s usually there to stay. And puberty, when secondary sex characteristics develop, can be a dangerous trigger. ‘I’ve had mothers call me who say their child tries to kill themselves every time they have their period,’ Olson-Kennedy said. ‘Parents come in saying, “My kid tried to cut off his penis with dental floss.”’ Olson-Kennedy’s first line of treatment for adolescents is stopping puberty so children and their parents can buy time to sort out what they want to do. Puberty blockers, GnRh agonists like the injectable Lupron [*Lupron is being used on autistic children and causes sterility, among other things. It may have been used by eugenicists in the past] or the implant Supprelin, suppress puberty by modifying hormone release. Such drugs have been used off-label safely for more than 30 years to stop early puberty. Trans doctors say it’s critical to stop puberty before the body morphs in ways that are difficult to change—the broadening of shoulders for men, for example, or the rounded hips of women. ‘Even 14 or 15 is too late,’ said Dr. Norman Spack, an endocrinologist who founded the country’s first transgender youth clinic at Boston Children’s Hospital.”

*

What all this points to is not so much a budding new development within the species as an ideological battleground. Many progressives see this as a war of the new against the old, of enlightened values struggling against outmoded beliefs and prejudices. But if looked at with a less “cultured” or ideologically entrenched eye, it appears to be more of a war of culture against nature, or mind against body. (In passing, it’s worth noting that the high culture phase of societies are often characterized by an interference with child development to make “properly” socialized adult bodies, as in the case of foot-binding in China.) As the opening quote shows, men aspiring to become women may be as old as culture itself (though not as old as human existence–we only have records of cultural history, for obvious reasons). Perhaps there is even a direct correlation between culture and the drive to transcend biology, and therefore death?

Though it may seem an unlikely source to turn to, Carlos Castaneda’s Art of Dreaming–the ninth in his famous series of anthropological novels about Toltec sorcery–provides a curious echo of this same basic drive, complete with a metaphysical rationale as deep and archetypal as the religious drive to escape damnation–or attain eternal life:

“‘I’ve said to you that the inorganic beings don’t pursue females; they only go after males. But I’ve also said to you that the inorganic beings are female, and that the entire universe is female to a large degree. So draw your own conclusions.’ Don Juan explained to me that sorceresses, in theory, come and go as they please in that world because of their enhanced awareness and their femaleness. ‘The first part of the dreaming lesson in question is that maleness and femaleness are not final states but are the result of a specific act of positioning the assemblage point. . . . And this act is, naturally, a matter of volition and training. Since it was a subject close to the old sorcerers’ hearts, they are the only ones who can shed light on it.’”

Castaneda’s don Juan goes further still, in claiming something trans activists would wholeheartedly get behind: that sorcery is powerful not only to change one’s gender but retroactively correct what gender one was born as:

“I have already said to you that to be a natural man or a natural woman is a matter of positioning the assemblage point. . . . By natural I mean someone who was born either male or female. To a seer, the shiniest part of the assemblage point faces outward, in the case of females and inward, in the case of males. The tenant’s assemblage point was originally facing inward, but he changed it by twisting it around and making his egglike energy shape look like a shell that has curled up on itself.”

Ergo, the self-transitioned sorcerer who makes the shift from male to female can legitimately claim to have been born that way.

Leaving aside the possible value of Castaneda’s accounts as anything but wild metaphors, within the narrative he spins, the final truth about the Tenant is that, via his-her elaborate manipulations of energy and identity, in an attempt to escape the clutches of inorganic beings, s/he ended up trapped by that very same identity. “She was the closest thing to permanent,” Castaneda writes, “while I was temporary. That was my advantage. The death defier had worked herself into a corner, and I was free.”

The neoliberal sorcery of identity politics revolves around an unquestionable belief in the sanctity of identity. Its aims have to do with endless ideological renovations, technological extensions, and cosmetic furnishings of the cage. What they never address is the possibility or desirability of leaving the cage behind entirely.

*

In the simplest psychological and social terminology, gender confusion that leads to a decision to “transition” from one gender to another is a question of a strong preference or desire being acted upon with or without the sanction of society. The question of whether or not society sanctions such desires or their fulfillment, and where the desires come from in the first place, are two separate questions. Ideologically, when it comes to sexual preferences (with one notable exception), it is today only really permissible to address the first question.

When it becomes socially unacceptable to talk about any sort of preference in terms of unconscious drives, neurosis, or pathology (unless it’s a crime, and even then, the law may change to suit the new preferences), then pathology, neurosis, and the unconscious cease to exist as categories of meaning. Yet as psychological phenomena they continue and, logically, can only proliferate for not being identified.

The notion that suffering is something that needs to be alleviated by fixing the externals is central to the transgender movement, as well as to neoliberalism, identity politics, and all modern Western values that elevate personal preference over every other factor. This turning away from internal states of suffering to external pseudo-solutions (which are often really distractions) creates the sort of messed up culture of exploitation we are living in. It is a world where no one wants to just sit in the distress of being poisoned by generations of abuse, but instead rushes to surgically remove the offending parts, or worse, take them out on–or put them into–someone else. The Trans Agenda does both, because as well as altering the individual’s externals (and internals) as a way to alleviate their distress, it also imposes this “choice” on others by forbidding all questioning of it. A man with a penis can legally oblige others to identify him as a woman–and gain access to women’s bathrooms–because he insists that this is how he identifies, and that for his belief not to be affirmed by others, will only cause him more distress.

My own sense, as I turn fifty, is that individuation–the quest for self-knowing–is a journey inward that eventually dis-identifies with everything but the Soul. It begins with your family, as the song goes, but soon it comes down to race, sex, even species. So the idea that we can be whatever we feel like being, biologically, through a mixture of desire and technology, is a literalization and hence an inversion of the truth that we are infinitely more than our biology. It is a way of insisting that what we are is not something we have to discover, but something we get to choose. This leaves out the rather obvious problem that, if we do not know who or what we are, our choices are going to be influenced, and severely compromised, by that same lack of awareness.

To erase the biological difference of the other–as trans ideology does–in this quest for identity is to eradicate the other’s identity while claiming it for one’s own. It’s psychic cuckoo-land. It is also the absolute inverse of self-discovery.

On the other hand, I recognize the need to be careful when using words like pathology or, its inverse, well-adjusted, because, in an exploitative culture, adjustment isn’t itself necessarily such a great sign, and “pathology” can be a necessary response to an unhealthy environment. But on the other other hand, when someone responds to confusion about their bodily identification with a literalized bid for transformation, it’s essential to recognize that this may be an unconscious cry for help, rather than a true, conscious step towards wholeness. Simply providing such people with the justification and means to act on their desire may not be the most compassionate or healthy way to address such a complex unknown as this.

The notion that people know what they need and ought to be allowed to have it is a central principal and value in the consumer capitalist mosh-pit of human exploitation which we live in today. Ironically, this same culture works 24-7, using every known form of technology and psychological manipulation to tell people what they need and give it to them. It thereby proves highly effective at preventing most people from ever discovering their true orientation.

The truth is we don’t know what we need: we have been cultured and conditioned to want all the wrong things and to turn to the ruling power structures to get them. We are given (or sold) anything and everything but what will allow us to move our attention inward, where what is of true value is to be found. All these solutions that are offered, as means to autonomy and self-empowerment, in fact lead to the opposite: increased dependency on the Dream State that is selling us its manufactured imago of being.

*

The following is from “Exiles in their own flesh: A psychotherapist speaks” by Lane Anderson (a pseudonym), “a practicing psychotherapist who has worked extensively with ‘trans teens’ and their families”:

“When I am suddenly and without warning discouraged from exploring the underlying causes and conditions of certain of my patients’ distress (as I was trained to do), and instead forced to put my professional stamp of approval upon a prefab, one-size-fits-all narrative intended to explain the complexity of my patient’s troubles, I feel confused. It’s as if I am being held hostage. No longer encouraged or permitted to question, consider or discuss the full spectrum of my patient’s mental health concerns, it has occurred to me that I am being used, my meager professional authority commandeered to legitimize a new narrative I may or may not wish to corroborate. It’s been perilous to simply admit to not fully understanding it all–let alone disagree with the trans narrative. There was no training or teaching. I was just suddenly told that some of my patients thought they were trapped in the wrong body and that was that.”

….

“There are so many complex forces, from many different realms, coming into play with this trans wave. Most people are completely unaware of these intersecting interests. Unfortunately the culture war has done a number on the concept of critical thinking. I have considered myself liberal my entire adult life, and I still am. But for a long time I couldn’t find anyone questioning this trans explosion who wasn’t on the far right. It made me feel like only conservatives were allowed to think, to consider this issue, but ultimately their thoughts were rendered meaningless due to their branding by the culture war. It’s essential that left-leaning people model critical thinking for the masses in this regard.

“It’s important to link people like us together, who have been silenced, so we can resume contact with our critical thinking skills and reduce our growing sense of self doubt. Divide and conquer is best accomplished through silencing, through calling into question those who speak out. There is so much of this attached to the trans movement. Even just wondering about a profound concept such as transgender is labeled transphobic. What I think has happened is that people are now phobic about their own gut responses to life. We are being systematically separated from our own intuition. This is fatal for a civilization, I think. Not that our intuition always tells the truth with a capital T, but it is a critical piece of who we are. Without it, we remain profoundly directionless, and more susceptible to coercion of all types. [Emphasis added.]

“What frightens me most about the trans movement is that the establishment has gotten involved and is leading it. I think that’s really weird. Clearly they are benefiting from it financially. So sad. It disturbs me to see how giddy my former medical director is to be part of this growing craze. We used to treat kids with mental health problems, but now it’s all about validating their emergent and shifting identities. As professionals, if we don’t loudly prioritize their identities as being the most important thing about them (and identities do shift constantly in kids and teens), we risk coming across as unsupportive and even immoral. Identity development has always been a teen task, but in the past it wasn’t necessarily supposed to become a lifestyle, or colonize the entirety of your existence. . . . What saddens me the most is the way children are being trained to think their parents do not love them if mom and dad don’t jump aboard the trans train. To me, this is a brutal aspect of a near-dictatorship being foisted on everyone.”

….

“One common trait I’ve noticed in nearly all the trans kids I’ve met has been their profound sense of being different, and too alone. They often have had little success with making friends, or what I would call contact with ‘the other.’ Because of their psychic isolation, they are prime targets for group think narratives. But in addition to looking for a way to belong, they are also craving protection and the stamp of legitimacy, perhaps because they feel a profound lack of it.

“Now that the government and medical communities are involved in the creation of who trans folks are, this class of individuals have finally found their safe havens. Now, rather than being merely invisible and awkward, they have been transformed into veritable leaders of a revolution. Now, rather than cower in the shadows, they have commandeered the narratives of others into a similar dark and brooding place where they once were. The tables, as they lived and viewed them, have now turned.”

….

“A large part of the problem comes with the revolution in health care. More and more, we are giving people the power to define their own treatments. This is good in many ways, but the trans movement is using this moment, and is actively recruiting young, psychologically undefined and frightened people to push their agenda through the medical community. It’s clearly not that difficult to do. These kids are just pawns. That’s how it looks to me anyway. The trans community needs more converts so that the narrative becomes more cohesive. I’m guessing the push for this comes from a need to further cohere so they will have more members to fully cement a fragile, constructed reality.”

From the comments section, the therapist responds to a question from a transitioning-gender person, as to how she would approach someone wishing to make the change:

“This development of the self would be a process whereby a client is assisted in the difficult task of creating a kind of consolidated sense of who they are. Personally, I think these core parts of us should function, or ideally function best when they are functionally somewhat autonomous, yet healthfully interdependent with others. I guess what I’m saying is, if a person doesn’t really yet know who they are independently, if they have a sort of ‘empty center looking to be filled from without,’ I would work with them until they were able to find some weight within their own psychic core before they engaged in any sort of drastic changes. Signs that this consolidation is happening would be the individual not requiring others to excessively validate who they are. Ideally the individual should not be excessively too dependent upon the thoughts and opinions of others to maintain their sense of self.

“. . .  Unstable folks are neurologically incapable of observing others outside of how these others can fulfill their immediate needs (think narcissism, which is basically a sign a person is too dependent upon external others to construct the self. In being overly dependent in this way, the empty person uses others to create an image of themselves, they use others to literally ” feel” who they are. Obviously, this is all unconscious. Most people with a lack of a cohesive self are not aware they are using others in this way, but they will feel the effects of this habit and often not understand why they continue to have poor interpersonal and disrupted relationships with others).

“So, for me, to get back to your question, I would work to look at whether or not a person has accomplished basic psychological developmental tasks before I would encourage their transitioning. However, this is all a bit of a mute point [sic], for my exploring such with people who come to me saying they seek to transition will now classify me as transphobic and out of compliance if I explain what I’ve here explained to you. The fact is, not one of the kids I met with who wanted to transition was manifesting psychological health. They were very hurt individuals and had attributed their very real pain to the theory that their bodies and gender brains were misaligned. The vast majority of them had severe deficits interpersonally, experienced profound social anxiety, suicidality, to name just a few of the issues I saw emerging. These were souls fearing psychic extinction, living with the terror of being too different, too alone. They nearly all found their new identities, along with a whole new slew of friends, in others who experienced similar or equal psychic terror. How could I take seriously their sudden belief that they were trapped in the wrong body? How could I not see that they had stumbled upon a very viable and critical path to locating themselves amongst similar others. [Emphasis added.]

“Of course, I could not say this to any of them as they would claim, as they had been schooled online, that I too didn’t understand and was transphobic.”

https://auticulture.wordpress.com

The Rise of the Dream-State Part 2 of 3: Transhumanism, Postgenderism, Brain-Centricism, Psychic Fragmentation

All 3 parts as PDF

“Transhumanism and Transgenderism enjoy a close relationship due to mutual interest in enhancement technology.”
–Hank Pellissier, “Transhumanism and Transgenderism

The overlap between transgenderism and transhumanism is fundamental, and because of that it seems to be invisible to many people. I think this overlap between the rejection of gender and the rejection of the body (and therefore of humanness) shows an underlying fabric to modern ideology. This is probably why so many intelligent people support the “trans” movement without really understanding it. With transhumanism, the message is writ large enough that no one can miss it.

The above quote comes from The Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies. This is their Mission Statement:

“The Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies is a nonprofit think tank which promotes ideas about how technological progress can increase freedom, happiness, and human flourishing in democratic societies. We believe that technological progress can be a catalyst for positive human development so long as we ensure that technologies are safe and equitably distributed. We call this a ‘technoprogressive’ orientation. Focusing on emerging technologies that have the potential to positively transform social conditions and the quality of human lives–especially ‘human enhancement technologies’–the IEET seeks to cultivate academic, professional, and popular understanding of their implications, both positive and negative, and to encourage responsible public policies for their safe and equitable use.”

The site promotes “Posthuman Gender: A Non-Binary Future,” and states that “Transhumanists extoll transgender people as prescient pioneers of morphological freedom and technological enhancement” (Benjamin Abbott). Postgenderism has its own Wikipedia page. It is described there as

“a diverse social, political and cultural movement whose adherents affirm the voluntary elimination of gender in the human species through the application of advanced biotechnology and assistive reproductive technologies. Advocates of postgenderism argue that the presence of gender roles, social stratification, and cogno-physical disparities and differences are generally to the detriment of individuals and society. Given the radical potential for advanced assistive reproductive options, postgenderists believe that sex for reproductive purposes will either become obsolete, or that all post-gendered humans will have the ability, if they so choose, to both carry a pregnancy to term and ‘father’ a child, which, postgenderists believe, would have the effect of eliminating the need for definite genders in such a society.

“Postgenderism as a cultural phenomenon has roots in feminism, masculism, along with the androgyny, metrosexual/technosexual and transgender movements. However, it has been through the application of transhumanist philosophy that postgenderists have conceived the potential for actual morphological changes to the members of the human species and how future humans in a postgender society will reproduce. In this sense, it is an offshoot of transhumanism, posthumanism, and futurism.”

Apparently, one of the earliest expressions of postgenderism was Shulamith Firestone’s The Dialectic of Sex:

“[The] end goal of feminist revolution must be, unlike that of the first feminist movement, not just the elimination of male privilege but of the sex distinction itself: genital differences between human beings would no longer matter culturally. . . . The reproduction of the species by one sex for the benefit of both would be replaced by (at least the option of) artificial reproduction: children would be born to both sexes equally, or independently of either, however one chooses to look at it; the dependence of the child on the mother (and vice versa) would give way to a greatly shortened dependence on a small group of others in general, and any remaining inferiority to adults in physical strength would be compensated for culturally” (1970, p. 11).

Wikipedia’s description continues:

“In regard to potential assistive reproductive technologies, it is believed that reproduction can continue to happen outside of conventional methods, namely intercourse and artificial insemination. Advances such as human cloning, parthenogenesis and artificial wombs may significantly extend the potential for human reproduction. Many argue that posthuman space will be more virtual than real. Individuals may consist of uploaded minds living as data patterns on supercomputers or users engaged in completely immersive virtual realities. Postgenderists contend that these types of existences are not gender-specific thus allowing individuals to morph their virtual appearances and sexuality at will.”

Both transhumanism and the majority (though not all) of the arguments for transgenderism as a lifestyle seem to be dependent on a pretty much total (100% total in the case of transhumanism) denial of the existence of the unconscious, i.e., the psyche. This is more than a little strange, if we consider that the idea of an identity-self independent of biology most obviously corresponds with the religious idea of the soul, and soul = psyche. Yet the new trans-ideology is secular and irreligious, even anti-religious or (dare I say) “satanic,” insofar as it effectively denies the existence of any reality beyond that of the personal self and its (culturally conditioned) preferences.

So what is this identity-self that’s supposedly independent of biology? What is it that is supposed to have the “right” to be able to “choose” what sexual or other identity it is given, by society, surgery, and technology? Who is this hypothetical “person” in search of a true identity independent of the cruel impositions of biology and/or a blind and indifferent God?

The question of the need for sex-change related to “being a woman in a man’s body” (or vice versa) surely requires the existence of something pre-existing conception, or at least pre-existing the determination of gender in the fetus, albeit a mysterious something that itself has gender (or sex). The idea that souls are gendered is not one I’ve heard of in metaphysical or religious systems, and as far as I know, people who believe in reincarnation generally believe they have had (or that it is usual to have had) past lives as both sexes.

For various reasons, however, the existence of a soul-psyche (which one trans-commenter at this blog called “ephemeral rubbish”) would seem to throw into disarray most if not all of the arguments for surgically and chemically induced sex change as a 100% healthy life choice. Not the least of these reasons is that a psychological view invariably brings up questions as to what may have caused an individual to feel they were born in the wrong gender body–what sort of early trauma, sexual interference, psychic enmeshment with a parent, or other cultural factors might be behind such feelings.

At best, the “trans” argument is zero psychology and all biology, and yet it is largely reliant on the biology of the brain, i.e., on neurology. It argues that biology–in some individuals–is literally divided against itself, that the brain has somehow ended up in the wrong gender body. In this imagined confusion of interests, the brain is boss, and the body becomes its bitch, to be re-engineered into whatever forms best suit the brain’s particular needs. Where those needs come from, if not biology (i.e., the body), is left unaddressed. In fact, as the psychologist quoted in part one testified, all such essential questions go out the window once the notion of a choosing identity-self independent of biology replaces that of an unconscious psyche indwelling the body, or trying to, and as the many, myriad ways in which that psyche can become fragmented through trauma are redacted by the Sovereign Identity Police.

The Trans-Agenda is everywhere. The primary newspeak-doublethink premise of the Identity Police is, like my brother’s satanic credo: you are what you pretend to be. There is no biological difference between the sexes, they argue, because biology is a state of mind. Do not try to ask, “If there is no difference then why do you need a sex change or hormonal treatment?” To do so will only identify you as a thought criminal in need of correction and re-orientation. The only acceptable response to the Identity Police is “Lovely, lovely, lovely!”

So what are the real world results of the trans-mantra of “Don’t dream it, be it”? Besides the socially enforced insanity that gives male predators access to female bathrooms simply if they wear a dress (or say they are women), and access to children by self-identifying as six-year old girls, and so on; besides the countless children being roped into corporate greed-fueled medical programs for sexual reorientation; there is also a growing pressure for the rest of us–otherwise impartial observers to a fascinating cultural trend that threatens to pull the rug out from underneath our every idea of what is real or true–caught inside an ever-shrinking social space where it becomes harder and harder to say–or even think–the things we feel are true for us to say and think. These of course are the things most essential for us to say, even to the point it may be tempting to say them when there is no one specific to say them to, to say: “No, I will not accept this version of reality simply because I am told I must, or that I am filled with hate if I do not accept and affirm it. I will not ‘get with the program’ when the program is designed to strip me of those last cubic centimeters between my ears (or is that legs?) that even George Orwell let Winston Smith keep. In a word: No.”

What I am personally saying No to is not people who want to relieve their suffering via medical-corporate intervention. I have neither the power nor any business telling these people what they should or should not do to or with their bodies. What I am saying No to is much larger than that. I am saying No to the essential goal of Total Disembodiment, to the drive to become digitalized data with synthetic bodies, or synthetic bodies with digital data, or whatever the technology is offering us. I am saying No to those toxic ancestral fragments that wish to ride us like donkeys into an eternal life of living hell in which every last vestige of humanness has been replaced by an inorganic machine’s idea of perfected identity freedom of choice. I am saying no to a Brave New World, cerca 1984, in which humans have become the unrecognized endangered species on the planet and where our conquerors are invisible, subtle, and pervasive. I am saying No to the rise of the Dream State–without any illusions that my No will make the slightest bit of difference to anyone but myself; but content that that difference is enough.

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Photo of gender reassignment surgery taken down on request, for being too “shocking.”

munchausen

“Why one has to have a body, I don’t know. A necessary appendage to the head, I suppose. I always wished I didn’t have a body. I suppose everyone does.”
–Paul Bowles, in 1984

From the–admittedly problematic–more metaphysical view, there are questions about whether a person experiencing gender-identity confusion might be possessed by the soul of an ancestor or other non-physical/inorganic entities with their own agendas, and so forth. As far as I know, none of these questions are being raised in the mainstream debate about transgender, since they are “unscientific” questions, and never mind that the idea of a gendered self is itself rather unscientific. The scientific or pseudo-scientific rationale for transgender surgery and chemical intervention has to do with–surprise surprise–the brain, and the belief that sometimes a person may be biologically hardwired wrong, as a male brain in a female body or vice versa. Here are some of the arguments I found in a huffy Huffington Post article, one that is admittedly mostly ideological gas, posing as science: “Do Your Homework, Dr. Ablow”:

“Gender identity (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender), sexual orientation (hetero-, homo-, or bisexuality), pedophilia, and the risks for neuropsychiatric disorders are programmed into our brain during early development. There is no proof that postnatal social environment has any crucial effect on gender identity or sexual orientation.” Swaab and Bao, Neuroscience in the 21st century, 2013

[Why is it important to stress this “no proof for environmental factors”? The same reason the Wikipedia page on homosexuality insists–countless times–that homosexuality is never caused by negative environmental factors (while admitting it might relate to positive ones): because the goal is normalization, and the means is the abolishment of all psychological interpretations of human behavior in favor of purely mechanistic ones that, paradoxically, emphasize the idea of human beings’ right to choose to pursue their happiness.]

“However, when the process of genital development and of brain sexual development does not match the same sex, females with a male brain and vice versa can arise. These transsexual people have problems with their gender identity and have the conviction of being born in the wrong body.” Worrell, Master Thesis, Faculty of Medicine, Universiteit Utrecht, 2010

“It thus appears conceivable that due to local hormone dependent changes during development at least some areas of the brain may follow a different course than the genitals during the process of sexual differentiation. A partial or even complete brain-body sex reversal may eventually be the result.” Kruijver, Dissertation, Faculty of Medicine, University of Amsterdam, 2004

The author of the article concludes by saying “It’s very unlikely that we will develop a ‘soul-o-meter’ that measures the gender of a person’s inner essence. However, the body of evidence showing biological origins of gender dysphoria, of having a mis-matched brain and body, is overwhelming.”

This is basically a lie. There may be some evidence but there is also lots of evidence showing the reverse, that there is really no such thing as “brain-gender.” When it comes to brains, there seems to be a free market on theories. See for example “Debunking the ‘gender brain’ myth,” from August 2013: “many pop science presentations claim that neuroscience has shown important differences between boys’ and girls’ brains, and sometimes suggest the two should be taught differently, and possibly separately. “These commentators appear to be getting a lot of attention” [but] there are three problems with this trend, which can have damaging consequences–not only in classrooms, but at home and work. [C]laims are often made on the basis of isolated brain imaging studies that have not been replicated, and in some cases have found to be wrong.”

Or “Men and women do not have different brains, claims neuroscientist,” from Mar 2014: “Neuroscientist Prof Gina Rippon claims male and female brains only differ because of the relentless ‘drip, drip, drip’ of gender stereotyping. . . .  ‘The bottom line is that saying there are differences in male and female brains is just not true. There is pretty compelling evidence that any differences are tiny and are the result of environment not biology,’ said Prof Rippon. . . . ‘What often isn’t picked up on is how plastic and permeable the brain is. It is changing throughout out [sic] lifetime.’”

Or “The brains of men and women aren’t really that different, study finds,” from Science Mag November 2015: “The majority of the brains were a mosaic of male and female structures, the team reports online today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.”

And from the New Scientist that same month, “A welcome blow to the myth of distinct male and female brains”: “A major study that undermines the damaging idea that male and female brains are fundamentally different could be a game-changer, says Gina Rippon. One of the biggest barriers to equality is crumbling, thanks to a study that blows away the misconception that male and female brains are distinct. . . . Continuing to think in terms of simple male-female dichotomies is flying in the face of the evidence and will lead to poor research and misleading findings.”

And so on. Ironically, this data is probably as ideologically fueled as the data supporting gendered brains. For people still interested in the cause of women’s rights and asserting their absolute equality to men, these findings are cited as “an overwhelming body of evidence” that there is no difference between women and men outside of their reproductive organs. I don’t personally believe that either, and fortunately, none of my arguments depend on proving or disproving the idea of “brain gender.” For one thing, even if someone’s brain might sometimes be hard-wired for a different gender body than the one it ends up in, this still leaves the question of how and why (to what end) unanswered.

A more complex and nuanced attempt to source the transsexual phenomenon in human brains is Ramachandra’s work on phantom penises:

‘‘We hypothesise that, perhaps due to a dissociation during embryological development, the brains of transsexuals are ‘hard-wired’ in manner, which is opposite to that of their external morphological sex. In other words, they are not merely being metaphorical when they claim there is a mismatch between their internal gender-identity and their external somatic gender.

We also predict that some female-to-male transsexuals will have a phantom penis even although there is not one physically there. We believe that this is an easily testable hypothesis, which, if correct, would offer insights into both the basis of transsexuality and provide farther evidence that we have a gender specific body image, with a strong innate component that is ‘hard-wired’ into our brains. This would furnish us with a better understanding the mechanism by which nature and nurture interact to link the brain-based internal body image with external sexual morphology. We would emphasise here that transsexuality should not be regarded as ‘abnormal’ but instead as part of the spectrum of human behaviour.’’

This last line seems a little odd for a scientific paper and suggests that, once again, there is an ideological motivation (or funding) behind Ramachandra’s research. The question of normality and abnormality is a sociological and philosophical question, but it is beyond the scope of science, which works by proving hypotheses via amassing empirical data, not by making social judgments. Showing a psychological and social phenomenon as having correlations with observable brain function does not prove it is normal, obviously; to do that one would first have to prove that the particular brain function being correlated to is itself normal. And if making a case for commonality equaled normality, then it could be argued that child sexual abuse or domestic murder is normal. The only way I know of to prove normality, so-called, is to show that it has some evolutionary or social benefit. So far, I know of no evidence being offered for the social or evolutionary benefits of transsexuals, besides, ‘‘live and let live’’ and ‘‘variety is the spice of life,’’ which, while laudable sentiments, fall short of scientific arguments.

Nonetheless, Ramachandra’s proposal of an infant body-image whose gender sometimes contradicts the biological gender of the infant is certainly an interesting one. But once again, no cause is being offered for this strange phenomenon; a curious anomaly is being presented as the cause of another curious anomaly, then signed off with a nonscientific assertion aimed at promoting tolerance of social anomalies (once again, I am not arguing against tolerance of social anomalies, only pointing out that this isn’t a scientific question but a moral, social, and philosophical one). In an interview given by Ramachandra, he presents his phantom penis hypothesis and then talks at length about mirror neurons (a subject of much interest to me, which I have written about elsewhere). I am not entirely clear as to what connection he is drawing between infant body image and mirror neurons, but it does raise the possibility of this body image (whether or not it is at odds with the infant’s biology) being sourced outside of itself (as Lacan suggests when he equates body image with the development of ego, during the mirror stage of a child’s development). As Ramachandra describes them, mirror neurons ‘‘dissolve the barrier between you and other people.’’ How much more might this be the case with an infant watching its mother, out of whose body it emerged, and with whom it is still psychically entangled? Of course, there are many variables to consider here, and much of this information is new to me. I am currently just ‘‘brain-storming’’ in an attempt to keep this exploration as comprehensive as possible, and with the hope of more fully exploring these ideas later.

Regarding all the brain talk so popular today, a fundamental problem, in my view, is that it fails to address the (particularly western) assumption that we can be more fully identified with our brains than our bodies, i.e., that our brains determine how we experience ourselves more than our total bodies do. This is a very recent idea, and one for which there is no particular basis, only an unquestioned emphasis on neuroscience in explorations of consciousness, and the assumption which led to that emphasis. (Investigate closely many of the brain-centric arguments and you will find yourself alone inside an empty circle of logic.) Very few traditions besides the modern western scientific (or scientistic) one sees the brain as the sole center of consciousness, and there is plenty of evidence for the heart, intestines, and other organs–not to mention the cells of the body–containing awareness. This seems to me so self-evident that it feels odd even to have to write it down. But for some reason, we in the west are quite sold on the idea of the brain as the location of the “self.” Probably because it is located behind our faces.

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As others, such as Jordan Peterson, have pointed out, there is an inherent contradiction in the entire rationale of transgenderism, which is that it rests on the assertion that an individual can be whatever sex they say they are–even without the surgery–because sex-gender is a state of mind. But if this is really the case, why are transsexuals insisting on the need–and the right–for surgery and hormones? For that matter, why insist that others go along with our beliefs if we are so sure of it ourselves? The transgender movement is contingent not merely on a few individuals changing their gender, but on changing everyone else’s ideas about–and experience of–gender. In this sense, the transgender movement may be a kind of delivery device designed–consciously or not–to infiltrate society and upturn one of the last bastions of certainty we have left–that of our biological makeup and function. If so, then what appears to be the means (normalizing gender confusion) may in fact be the end.

In the meantime, there is a massive amount of data–albeit largely denied, suppressed, or ignored by mainstream commentators–that points towards centuries of psychological and emotional incest, child sexual abuse both organized and random, and government programs of trauma-based mind control for the creation of alters or sub-personalities. There is evidence that all of this suffuses our culture at the deepest and widest of levels, and that no one born into our world is immune to it. So to imagine that a phenomenon such as transgenderism, transsexuality, or gender confusion emerged whole and pristine from inside our culture, without in any way being symptomatic of it, is a feat of doublethink of Promethean proportions. What sort of society embraces a program of corporate-financed mutilation and drug dependency posing as spiritual emancipation and individual empowerment? One that is made up of traumatized and fragmented individuals who can’t tell the difference between wholeness and fragmentation, and who prefer to get behind technology that allows for the effective suppression of all fragments that interfere with the will of the fragment most driven–or socially empowered–to create its own reality. The fragment that chooses to reign in hell, rather than serve in heaven.

Of course, there is still the possibility that gender confusion, as a more flamboyant and lurid expression of neurodiversity in general, is something other than, or as well as, a pathological response to a fractured culture and is really a spiritual-alchemical solution to it. But if so, then we might well ask why it is currently feeding into the very same economic and political social engineering programs that most benefit from perpetuating the fragmentation? We might also ask, what is the evolutionary gain of individuals born into the wrong gender body who must then have surgery to fix the mistake? The only systems this seems to benefit are corporate systems of control such as the medical, governmental, and media industry. It’s certainly feasible–likely even–that such anomalies might have something to bring to the species in terms of an experience of dual-sex consciousness inside a single-sex body. Some people have claimed this in relation to Native American beliefs, suggesting a correlation between transsexual types and shaman types. But those early forerunners–if they existed–didn’t have surgery to switch sexes, and surely the point of such an anomalous experience of consciousness is not to switch from one sex to the other, but to find a way to reconcile that tension and allow for the harmonization of masculine and feminine principles within the body? (And anyway, wouldn’t it make more sense for these two-spirit people to be surgically transformed into hermaphrodites?) If we are to believe that Nature/consciousness is attempting to mutate and evolve in some way via this gender confusion, then how exactly is it a good thing for human ingenuity to intervene and “correct” Nature’s experiment by surgically altering the bodies involved? Is it all about proving once again how necessary humans are to get Nature back on track–back towards capitalist expansion, space travel, chemical dependency, and total disembodiment?

Transhumanism, little and large, does away with all these annoying questions by bringing it down to a viewpoint in which the body is simply a machine that can be tinkered with however necessary or possible, in order to better suit the needs of its “driver.” But in the absence of a soul-psyche or unconscious self (or Self), who or what is this driver? The answer, once again, is the constructed identity or socialized alter-self. But if this constructed social identity is a fragment of the greater psyche, then on its own terms (as an autonomous, independent self), it’s not even realbecause it’s only an unconscious vehicle for the greater drives of psyche and body. While it remains unconscious and under the delusion of a separate autonomous existence, its wants and needs cannot be healthy or constructive wants and needs. They are drives rooted in trauma, a fight-or-flight reaction that was so severely and repeatedly triggered in early childhood that it got stuck at the “on” position, until the body armor became the wo/man, the fragment the whole.

I grew up watching it happen (I think we all did, but then we forgot). I have seen the consequences up close and personal. My late brother’s credo was: “I am a lie who points to the truth, and the truth is that we are exactly what we pretend to be.” I agree with the part about the lie, but I don’t hear any truth in it. All I hear is a shrill and protracted wail of human despair, hoping desperately to pass for a victory cry.https://auticulture.wordpress.com/

The Rise of the Dream-State, part 3 of 3: Trans-Culture, Paraphilias, Non-Duality, & Corporate Cures for Alienation

All 3 parts as PDF

“Transgender Women have needs and desires just like any other person. However due to their unique position, they have a greater understanding of life and realize the essential fallibility of humans. . . . Transgender Women are also sexually very active and are much more nubile than the average cis-woman. Therefore men with a high sexual appetite (that is every man alive) will have a great time with them.”
Transsingle Dating Site

While I prefer not to make sweeping philosophical statements of belief, there are aspects of the present subject matter that are too unexplored and unfamiliar to present them on a pure evidence-basis; at the same time, the subject is so fraught with strong emotional opinions that it may help if I make my own “position” as clear as possible–regarding why I consider the subject important enough to write about, even though I have no transsexual tendencies myself, nor any significant dealings with people who have these tendencies in my daily life.

I have arrived at the subject matter by an indirect route, through my researches into trauma, psychic fragmentation, organized sexual abuse, mind control, transhumanism, alien abduction, and other occult or spiritual systems of beliefs, social and cultural engineering, crowd control, and mimesis. Something that has become more and more apparent to me–albeit at a very intuitive level–concerns a largely unrecognized psychological (and frankly, metaphysical) reality, that of ancestral possession. At this point, I would probably say that ancestral possession is the primary motivating factor in history, and that without including it, no understanding of human behavior is going to be complete. This is particularly the case if we are looking at human pathologies,­ which are I think the sine qua nonof human behavior, and hence history.

While not all ancestral patterns are pathological, all pathologies are to some degree ancestral. Our ancestry of course goes back a long way­–prehistory–and the most easily observable ancestral influence is that of those family members we have had direct contact with, especially the ones we grew up with and were raised by. Of these, none has a greater influence on our psychological development than our mother. To an incalculable extent, our self-image, our preferences, desires, fear, obsessions, and choices are determined by her influence–especially if we understand that our mother and our father’s influence is itself a continuation and extension of that of the ancestors, those who have now passed on. Nonetheless, in a purely observable (though still somewhat mysterious) framework, I am confident in making these two statements: that psychic possession of men by their mothers is the most essential and unrecognized aspect of ancestral possession (and hence of human history); and that the primary cause for the multitude of desperate quests for identity that have manifested throughout history in all forms of violence is this same mother-possession.

I realize that this is a thesis statement and that it is not the thesis of the present piece. I present it now as rather the essential background that provides primary context for the author’s own history and hence interest in this subject.

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After the first part of this series appeared, I received some criticism that it was lacking nuance and making the mistake of putting every transsexual in the same box together, when there was a very wide spectrum of individuals to consider. One thing that I hope has become clear, to anyone reading this series, is that the transgender/postgender agenda is quite distinct from transsexual individuals, at least to a large degree. In other words, a vast portion of the push behind trans/postgenderism is not coming from individuals who have or wish to transition (yet). Like the person who commented at my blog (Claire), there’s an unknown but significant percentage of transsexuals who are not supportive of the trans/postgender push. Nonetheless, for obvious reasons , the social and cultural movement and the individuals it points towards (and to some degree stems from), cannot be separated. Without the existence of transsexuals within our culture, no “Trans Agenda,” and without the Trans Agenda, there would be a lot less aspiring transsexuals than there currently are.

While the first statement will probably go uncontested, the second will no doubt stir the hackles on many a neoliberal neck. But human beings are imitative creatures and this goes double for heavily socialized human beings. Culture is a process by which certain behaviors “go viral” and become fashionable, i.e., inspire imitation. Naturally, the more prolific (and the more widely represented by the media) a given behavior becomes, the more people are going to imitate it. The manufactured transgender movement is really no different from any widespread marketing campaign that depends on both memetic and mimetic engineering, and central to its success is representing the idea of chemically and surgically induced sex changes as healthy, normal, and desirable (and sexy and hip).

As with homosexuality, however (and being nonwhite, and being neurodivergent), it is not enough for transsexuals to aspire for equality. The previously marginalized subset aims to colonize the mainstream, and, like a cuckoo, this means ousting the previously dominant ideology, or at the very least forcing it to change its ways. In the present case, it is not merely ideology that has to be radically reconfigured but biology. Since the Trans Agenda advocates the use of technology to alter people’s biological gender, the very idea of biological gender must be recalibrated to match the technology. The “is” determines the “ought”: as soon as it becomes possible to alter gender, an inevitable shift in cultural values occurs–including moral ones–that is geared towards making gender alteration socially acceptable. Since social etiquette and ethics form a complex system, this means that the entire philosophical and ideological basis of society must undergo a corresponding shift to accommodate the new technology and the new fashion, and to make room for the newly manufactured identities rolling off the factory lines, complete with their particular (and equally manufactured) sets of desires.

Now, like being a woman or being homosexual once was (ironically, both of these social identities are receiving short thrift from the Trans Agenda), the trans identity is being subtly equated with higher social standing and a kind of moral superiority. In certain circles, it is even being touted as a spiritual calling, a veritable attainment of non-dual reality in which gender is as mutable and arbitrary as any other form of consumer preference. Presumably this is because transgenderism has the relatively novel ingredient of actual physical transformation. While it is still a “choice” (albeit one attributed to some mysterious and anomalous whim of human biology), it is a choice that requires the ultimate commitment imaginable, short of death anyway.

Speaking of removing body parts, this is probably an opportune moment to ask: how long before apotemnophiliacs replace transsexuals as the ultimate marginal group? Apotemnophilia is a neurological disorder characterized by an intense desire for the amputation of a specific limb or a need to become paralyzed, blind, or deaf. Apparently rational individuals are asking for the amputation of healthy limbs or the destruction of functioning senses, and seeking surgeons to oblige them (or in some cases purposefully injuring themselves to force emergency medical intervention). Apotemnophilia was first described in a 1977 article by psychologists Gregg Furth and John Money (that pioneer of transgenderism and pedophile rights; see “Apotemnophilia: two cases of self-demand amputation as paraphilia”). In 2008, the afore-cited V.S. Ramachandran, David Brang, and Paul D. McGeoch proposed that apotemnophilia is a neurological disorder caused by an incomplete body image map in the right parietal lobe. A separate definition of apotemnophilia is erotic interest in being or looking like an amputee. In a similar way, there are transsexuals whose primary drive to transition to the opposite sex is the erotic charge they get from imagining themselves in a different gender body. This is known (in the case of men) as autogynephilia:  “a man’s paraphilic tendency to be sexually aroused by the thought or image of himself as a woman.”

The question of course is, why are apotemnophilia and autogynephilia considered paraphilias, while (the more “progressive” version of) transgender is not? The answer is that, through a combination of activism, media representation, and the growing numbers of advocates and defenders, it has been stricken from the list of paraphilias, and scientific research has gone full throttle to try and produce enough stupefying, generally pseudo-scientific evidence to keep it that way. But presumably all the arguments being made to defend transsexuals from the stigma of paraphiliacs (i.e., psychologically disturbed) could, if one wished, be equally well applied to cases of apotemnophilia (and autogynephilia)? And where would that end? A person might–like the author Paul Bowles–wish to do away with the body altogether, and opt for existence as a severed head floating in a jar. Who are we to say that this is an unhealthy life choice? But of course, the transhumanists are already working day and night to bring this grisly reality to fruition, and perhaps the ultimate social attainment will someday be recognized as having been achieved by those individuals who saw themselves as non-biological, non-human, and as “pure information,” people who chose to be removed from the physical realm altogether in lieu of an exclusive but eternal existence as Facebook accounts? But I fear I am in danger of becoming a pundit, so maybe I should stop there.

Except to add, in passing, that my brother Sebastian claimed to have had sex with a quadruple amputee prostitute in Amsterdam and wrote about it in his memoir, Dandy in the Underworld. Several years before he published the account, in late 2003, I received a photograph apparently of my brother inserting his erect penis into a dark-haired, legless, armless woman. Not only had he paid to have sex with her, apparently he’d arranged to have himself photographed in the act and then turned the photograph into a grisly greetings card, with the words “If you’re happy, clap your hands!” inscribed on the back. He then sent it to his family, friends, and who knows how many assorted others. I later found out that the photo was a fake: he had had someone Photoshop his head onto another man’s body, using a piece of apotemnophilia porn for his template. When I spoke to him at the time I received it however, he insisted it was authentic.

What appalled me about the image (and most of all his choice to use it that way) was how it exploited the woman’s suffering and misery. If I’d said as much, my brother would probably have countered that I had no business projecting my ideas about exploitation or human suffering onto the woman, and that (like all prostitutes, in my brother’s view) she was fully in charge of her choices. I can almost hear him saying it now. And in fact,  in his memoir, he wrote just such a comment, one that seemed especially tailored for me: “She wasn’t a victim. She was a warrior.” But as it turned out, my brother never even knew the woman in the photo, so how could he possibly know what her perspective on her condition was?

*

What originally sparked this three-part series was ostensibly an email exchange between myself and two others, about a spiritual teacher who is currently undergoing a sex change. One of my correspondents—himself a spiritual teacher–made a quip about how the non-dual movement had always been moving in this direction. So what direction is this? Towards the equivalence of psychological trauma, infinitely expanding paraphilias, and a total rejection of our embodied human existence with enlightenment? The spiritual guru in question is named Francis Bennett, and he has been endorsed at his website by the well-known Advaita guru Adyashanti. Bennett made an announcement on Facebook on 16 November, 2016, to the effect that he was a woman in a man’s body:

“It has been a bit of a relief to find out that this is what I have been unknowingly dealing with my whole life. In a certain sense, it explains a lot in my psyche and even in my body which I have always wondered over. Many people that have these kinds of chromosomal anomalies do not struggle at all with gender identity and feel themselves to be very fully identified with the gender they were perceived to be at birth. But some of them, like me, have always felt a kind of ambiguity around their gender identity. . . . Some studies would indicate that this also has some basis in physiological changes that happen in the womb as the fetus develops and experiences certain effects in brain and hormonal development. To be honest, I have always felt somewhat ‘gender ambiguous’ and as a little child of 5 or 6, I had deeply questioned my gender identity already. Between the ages of around 5 and 11, I actually felt inwardly that I was a girl, even though I obviously had a boy body on the level of appearances.”

This “spiritually awakened” teacher ends by quoting the Hollywood movie Forest Gump: “I am reminded of what Forest Gump’s mom once said to him, “Life is like a box of chocolates Forest. . . . Once you open the box, you never really know what you are gonna get!”

In a later article, Maestro Bennett continues with his Gumpian vision:

God created humankind in the divine image … both male and female (Genesis 1:27). So God as Creator is both father and mother. God is both male and female. God is fully androgynous……God is therefore trans-gender if you will…

I believe that we LGBTQI persons can be considered to be special gifts of God not in spite of, but precisely BECAUSE we are different and don’t fit within normally accepted societal gender or sexual attraction categories. We have been rejected by the leaders of most organized religions. Simply to survive emotionally and spiritually, we have been often forced to look more deeply into the meaning of life than the average person who fits in more easily. Our rejection by mainstream religions causes many of us to question the basic tenets of these religions in order to determine what fits for us and what does not. Though not always, this in turn can sometimes result in a higher level of spiritual consciousness. . . . Because our very survival depends on it, we who are different must question all these things. As survivors of this painful process, we are perhaps better able to tap into the true nature of God/Source/Consciousness, and the intended relationship of humanity with this absolute Reality.

Bennett considers himself “fairly well out on the transsexual end of the transgender continuum” and therefore has opted to undergo a full sex change. “There is a deep peace in this decision.”

Maybe I am a stickler, but isn’t there something a bit “off” about someone who claims to be spiritually awakened, and who host satsangs for spiritual seekers to help them find their way, claiming they have found peace by having a sex change? Whatever happened to looking within?

Bennett consider himself to be on a mission, however:

I feel that I and all LGBTQI folks, are called, by our very existence in the world,  to openly challenge the teachings and attitudes of spirituality that serve to enslave both men and women of whatever gender identity and sexual orientation, into rigid gender roles and categories that prevent them from fully embracing both the male and the female aspects of their souls, that prevent most from becoming whole and integrated in the true image and likeness of an androgynous, trans-gender God.

In other words, for these pioneers of transformation, spiritual freedom is only possible via corporate-backed sex change surgery and military-industrial chemicals.

Meanwhile, the meme is spreading via things like Paul Brandeis Raushenbush’s podcast at the Huffington Post: “God Is Trans: The Extraordinary Spirituality Of Transgender Lives.”

“During this week’s segment you will hear from a Christian, a Jew and a Buddhist about their lives as trans people, and the surprising and instructive ways religious figures acted with compassion as they transitioned to presenting as their authentic selves. Their journeys invite new understanding of spirituality by urgently presenting the deeply religious question: ‘Who Am I?’ Recently Bruce Jenner spoke on national television about life as a trans person, ushering in a new era of visibility of trans people. My hope is that the stories of Joy, Taj and Ellie will be cause for further celebration, and that their spiritual stories will offer all of us lessons for discovery about self, others and even God.”

Is there any way intelligent discerning people would buy this crap, I wonder, if they hadn’t already been so thoroughly worked over by the Identity Police, and so burdened by guilt, shame, and fear around transsexuality, as to be unable to even think clearly about it? Have we all been spiritually Gumpified into believing that life is a corporate conflation of sticky sweet comfort products that can all be lumped together into a single heart-shaped box?

And is it any wonder that the flip side of this cultural saccharinization program is the idolization of sociopathic killers?

*

At this point, the reader may well say, it’s easy to bitch and moan, but what am I actually proposing to do about any of this? Unfortunately, I am not in the business of offering solutions, not because I don’t want them but because I still think the best solution is found by fully taking on all the implications of a problem, and seeing it for what it is, withouttrying to fix it.

Imagine a very different sort of society in which confusion around one’s sexual identity was not seen as a problem to be fixed, in which suffering and identity crisis wasn’t seen as something to be avoided, or even alleviated, necessarily, but as a process to be observed and respected and allowed to happen. A society in which those individuals with especially fluid, anomalous, or unstable identities were given the necessary space and compassion (and attention) to be “liminal,” to remain essentially noncommittal about their sexual or gender orientation or anything else. Imagine a social environment where there was no pressure to fit in at all (provided one was not being actively hostile).

The point being: how many individuals are now jumping aboard the transgender bandwagon because of a combination of the pressure to conform in some way (the old world we are supposed to be evolving past via these new ideologies) with a more subtle pressure to early-adopt the non-conforming new identities being prepared for them, in tandem with a cynical marketing campaign–and/or a long-term, multi-national social engineering program (such as outlined in “Occult Yorkshire”)? How much is living in a society that sees social identity as the sine qua non of happiness, purpose, and meaning creating the very distortions, paraphilias, and biological “quirks” that are giving rise to growing numbers of alienated, dissociated children in search of a social identity that will match their anxiety and alienation? Do the vastly increasing numbers of transgender-oriented individuals have anything to do with a growing reality of transgenderism at a psychological or internal level, or do they relate to increased identity confusion and the ever-growing fear of being marginalized (because in liminal times, groups seek a scapegoat), combined with ready-made bogus identity-solutions that are generating vast profits for the ruling class and their corporations?

The idea of a “trans movement” suggests there is a new species emerging among us. While there may be a kernel of truth in this (there is definite overlap between transsexuals and autistics, which is a form of neurodiversity), I think that transgender is mostly a way for social (and possibly biological) anomalies to reduce and contain their feelings of alienation by over-literalizing them and converting them into sexual and cultural terms that relate to social identity. This requires ignoring the fact that social identity, whether it refers to “gender,” “race,” “class,” or all three, and regardless of how many bells and whistles are added to it, is the primary cause of human alienation. What might someone struggling with an interior experience that doesn’t fit the social molds tell us, if we gave them room to do so, rather than dictating the terms of their alienation to them? The same applies to autistics and to children in general: the social goal is always to socialize, to turn anomalies into productive members of society and good consumers of product, never to let them be and give them space to discover who and  what they actually are.

The question of what to do with social anomalies is the same as what to do with any lost soul (i.e., human being): listen, connect, share as deeply as we are able, and only then consider the possibility (or need) for guidance. The one thing that any of us really needs, and the only thing that ever really helps, is a working connection to our own sense of reality. Call it psyche or soul or intuition or God, once we have it, nothing can take it away. But if we don’t have it, no amount of naming or identification, no matter how ideologically “advanced,” is ever going to secure it for us. Ideology is not a means to establish a sense of reality, but as a very poor surrogate for it, it’s most destructive when it manages to persuade us we have found reality–our new, improved, socially sanctified identity–and so we stop seeking.

The problem with “pathologizing” anomalous traits is that there is a cultural stigma attached to pathology in a way that there isn’t–to anything like the same degree–with physical ailments. The term “mental illness” is inherently derogatory, not because there is shame in being damaged, but because it misrepresents the reality of what causes self-destructive behaviors, both subtle and extreme. First off, what’s invariably being addressed when people talk about mental illness pertains to the psyche and not the mind. Secondly, how is a mind supposed to get ill anyway? Illness is a term that was coined to address physical symptoms, that superimposed a biological map onto a psychological one, as if there could be an exact fit. This is absurd. The way the body gets ill and why, and the way to treat physical illness, may have very little in common with psychological imbalances.

If someone called me mentally ill, I would find it offensive. If someone suggested my psyche was out of balance due to trauma, I might be a little more amenable to discussing it, if only to point out that we are all, to varying degrees, out of psychic balance due to past traumas. We are all broken–but none more than those who want to pretend they are whole, that brokenness is their true nature, a birthright, and their very own special snowflake-ness. If psychological trauma is universal in our current society, and if it has a direct effect on our experience of our bodies and our sexuality, to suggest that transgenderism relates to psychological trauma—at least some of the time—ought not to be terribly controversial, much less equated with transphobia. The fact that it is indicates that there is a massive program of denial at work.

Since no one wants to talk about trauma or psyche, it has become a toss-up between slapping a label of “mentally ill” on someone and prescribing the latest pharma-cure, or creating a new ideology and lifestyle choice–or a new biology–to be celebrated and championed. In either case, big bucks are being made, accountability and understanding is being avoided, and troubled souls are being cruelly exploited. The saddest part is that those exploited souls are being turned into advocates of the corporations, and pushing the very agendas that are exploiting them onto others.

*

One of the things that seems to prevent open dialogue about transgender is the assumption that one has no business talking about it unless one has experienced it. In principal I agree, but only if we are going to apply this across the board, and are willing to say, for example, that we have no business talking about the wrongness of the Jewish holocaust because we have no idea what it was like to be a Nazi. No one is likely to say this, however, because the assumption is that we know immoral behavior when we see it, and we don’t need to experience it from the inside to judge it as bad. When it comes to transgender, the assumption is that people know what they are experiencing and have the right to define it for themselves, so if they say they were born in the wrong body, we should take their word for it and try to help them. This line of reasoning is inherently problematic and even self-contradictory, however. Really, it comes down to indulging people’s whims regardless of whether we understand them or not, and provided their whims are sufficiently fashionable to have received some sort of ideological and institutional support. When non-conformity becomes the norm, then we will conform to it. And meanwhile, the true anomalies continue to get marginalized out of existence.

In 2008, during the same period I met my wife online and began to recognize the depths of my own psychic-mother-enmeshment, I was for a time in contact with a transgender person. This person called themselves the Dream Queen and did online dream interpretations. They were very intelligent and insightful and our correspondence was a rich one. I found them charming and likable (they were still biologically male but I didn’t find it difficult to think of them as a female at that time), even to a degree attractive to me. They described their self-transformation in a similar way to how Genesis P. Porrige talked about his, i.e., in alchemical terms, as a sort of coniunctio oppositorum by which they desired to enact the alchemical marriage through surgery. My feeling, then and now, was that they were over-literalizing a subtler psychological journey. But if I said as much, I was delicate about it and no conflict ensued.

At a certain point, this person began to suggest that I was like them, and that I would someday go through the same process and undergo surgical intervention in order to realize my true alchemical nature as a hermaphrodite. I began to feel mild panic: what if they were right? I knew deep down that such a path was not for me; and yet still, my identity at that time (I had just turned forty) was sufficiently shaky for me to have vague feelings of doubt. By that age, I’d come to accept that life was so unbelievably strange, so full of unexpected curves, that nothing could be ruled out completely. The Dream Queen was so convinced of it, I felt briefly afraid that this might really be my future!

I assured them they were mistaken and gave my reasons. It didn’t create a rift between us (though we did lose touch over time), but I suppose it made clear that there was already a gulf there: I was not willing to make the leap which they saw as our shared destiny; by the same token, I was not able to fully endorse their own choice, at least not if full endorsement meant imitation.

As an adolescent, my hero was David Bowie. I painted a portrait of him, dressed in gaudy clothes, and wore eye makeup at weekends. I was a late bloomer sexually, and although I was interested in girls at the normal age, I never went further than a kiss and a grope until I was in my twenties (I didn’t consummate until I was twenty-seven). As I wrote in Seen and Not Seen, I didn’t even use ordinary porn during my teen years, but opted for darker material. I was deeply confused about my sexuality and afraid of girls. My mother worried I was gay during this period (I overheard her talking on the telephone), and there were times when I wondered too–not because I was ever attracted to boys, but because I knew there was something fundamentally different about me, I just didn’t know what it was. According to my mother, the first thing she said after I was born was, “Oh, I wanted a girl,” and maybe this had something to do with my sexual confusion later in life. Beyond any doubt, the difficulty I had owning my sexuality, from adolescence to date, is directly connected to an unhealthy bond with my mother, and it was this very bond that I began to unravel in my forties, when I met my wife. Without having done so, I would never have been able to commit to her as I did.

My experience with the Dream Queen illustrates that, if anything, I’m flexible and open, maybe to a fault, when it comes to cultural anomalies and my affinity with them. My “problem” with the Dream Queen only began when they tried to impose their worldview onto me and recruit me into their alchemical trans-agenda. Even then, it was not actually a problem (unless it was for them), simply a clear boundary. I wonder if the more strident “cis” defenders of trans rights ever come as close to contemplating their own transgender potential as some of us who are rigorously questioning the narrative? My guess is, most of them don’t. It’s all theoretical to them, an ideological question and nothing more. This is why even those bold enough to question the trans narrative end up spouting latitudes like “Live and let live.” We are encouraged to approve of people’s choices, but not to empathize with them. Empathy is too scary.

*

It has been a lifetime struggle for me to find a way of being that fits my own internal experience of being a man, and it’s a struggle that continues to this day. In a sense, that struggle has been invaluable to me, because I have had to discover an authentic sense of my sexuality without relying on any kind of social signage to guide me. During my adolescence, when I was aware there was something anomalous about me but not what it was, there were no “programs” to “help” me find my sexual orientation, no boxes I could put myself into to feel more secure (at least not until I found the box of “sorcerer” and alien hybrid, which worked for a decade or so). Essentially, I had to carry that feeling of being a misfit, a freak–of being somehow broken–with me through my life, like a splinter in the brain.

Now I’m fifty, and I know that splinter was in many ways the truest thing about me, because I was broken, my sexuality was polluted, hijacked, co-opted, and stolen from me, through a combination of a toxic culture, horrendous parenting, sibling abuses, and unknown human predators–in other words, exposure to the world. That doesn’t give me a clear sense of my sexual identity–I don’t identify primarily as a trauma-victim–but it at least gives me a clear sense of why I was unable to fully experience, express, and embody my sexuality. It also lets me know that there issomething still to discover, underneath all the trauma and the poisons, behind the social programs of abuse and the phony solutions designed to keep us inside them, there is that which I truly am, and always have been.

The older I get, the more integrated, the less preoccupied I am with my self-image, and the more ordinary I am able to be in my daily existence. I may feel anomalous–in some ways more than ever–but there is less of a need to make others recognize and affirm it, and more of an ability to go along with the social norms on a surface level. I have a mortgage, run a small business, and live a generally quiet life with a wife and a cat. My internet explorations notwithstanding, my rebellion is more and more directed inward. Creating a special category of identity is less and less important to me; identifying as human is enough.

My single biggest regret in life at this point is probably getting tattoos when I was thirty-five, when I believed I was a living avatar of Lucifer. I got the tattoos to mark that allegiance, to brand my body as property of Lucifer/the divine. It was a pointless exercise, and the only real effect it had was to brand me as a weirdo, to reinforce my sense of alienation by making it physical, tangible, and visible to others (what’s worse, the skin under one of the tattoos is irritable to this day). This stands alone as my only act of self-mutilation (not counting a pierced ear which has since closed up), and the only positive function of these tattoos now, in my view, is as a visceral reminder of my ego-inflated hubris and folly.

It’s my view now that the body is the base reality of human (and organic) existence, and that all existential questions begin and end with the body. I think that unconscious (and often conscious) fear, shame, resentment, and loathing of the body is so common in our “civilized” human society now as to be almost universal. Unconscious hostility towards our bodies is often directed outward at other bodies; but it is also directed inward, and on a daily basis, in the form of alcohol and drug abuse, unhealthy sexual promiscuity and abusive relationships, poor diet, and surgical “solutions.”

I consider that, for myself, love, respect, and enjoyment of my body is the only solid basis for a healthy relationship to others and with life. To start out from the premise that the body is “wrong” and in need of adjustment or improvement (unless it actually lacks functionality in some sense), then, is to establish the supremacy of mind/preference/desire over the reality of the body. I think that all other pathologies (destructive behaviors) stem from this basic misunderstanding, and that it is a misunderstanding that is rooted in unconscious hostility towards our own bodies.

*

Pro·crus·te·an: (especially of a framework or system) enforcing uniformity or conformity without regard to natural variation or individuality.”

It is an irony that the transgender movement, which may well have begun as reaction against a Procrustean social view of gender, has become itself Procrustean.

Every individual has within them both sexes, both biologically and psychologically speaking, as mother-father imagos­–which combined relate to the energetic ancestral line. Bringing those polar-forces into balance within the psyche is essential to a full and healthy life; and yet, due to social factors that seem designed to prevent a natural development of sexuality, it is also extremely rare.

To see transgender as an expression of this lack of balance is not to reduce it to a symptom or to a pathology. It is potentially to understand it, like all symptoms, as a process by which balance or wholeness can eventually be restored to the collective.

What troubles me is that it is perfectly natural, even inevitable, to experience confusion over our sexuality, and that reconciling male and female within ourselves is central to the “alchemical” work of individuation. Literalizing this as a biological problem that can be fixed by mechanistic means, whether by dressing up, chemical intervention, invasive surgery, or a combination of all three, is a means not to embrace difference but to banish it. It is a drive towards homogeneity and in-humanity, disguised as the exact reverse, as a humane approach to diversity.

The aim of this series has been simply to ask this question: What might be on the other side of that threshold of sexual identity confusion, if the movement was directed inward rather than outward?

https://auticulture.wordpress.com/

 

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