the CounterOrder's showcase for contributions from viewers
like you - including essays, art, letters and other material.
Essays and contributions are listed in order of date received
and posted at the discretion of your friendly editor and
part-time autocrat, Freydis. The only editing will be for length
if necessary. If you have something to add send it
< here >.
Also specify how you want credit (name?, e-mail? etc.) if any
my rough estimate about 60% of the letters sent to me express
their appreciation and approval of what they’ve read in
Nihilism’s Home Page (the
CounterOrder), about 30% are either unsure about or
want to know something more, and about 10% disapprove of it. –
Freydis, June 2008.
Statement on nihilism by Yvanz Mindz in Spanish with an
English translation, from Facebook group Reflexionemos:
Arte Y Conciencia, February 2013
...Yo sí creo en un dios, creo en un ser que está arriba
de nosotros; que es omnipotente, nos ama, nos da la
felicidad, que dio tantas cosas por nosotros, creo en la
Sé que hay misterios que un sólo ser tiene resguardados
sólo para cuando terminen nuestros días y como eso,
también creo en el bien y el mal, en el equilibrio, y en
la justicia espiritual, creo que hay alguien que escribió
en tableta nuestros destinos, que estamos predestinados a
su mano todopoderosa, creo en su fe, sobre de toda las
demás; la más precisa, en su doctrina; en sus 12 caminos,
sus 12 estrellas, sus 12 apóstoles.
Creo en la llama justiciera de almas, en los mundos del
subsuelo que carcomerán nuestra carne, por pecados
multiplicados con dolores inimaginables. Así como creo en
el todopoderoso, creo en las leyes impuestas por el Señor,
creo en el amor y en la paz......¡Pero!, así como creo en
eso, tengo presente que, creo en la imagen egoísta y de
miedo del ser humano, en sus ilusiones, sus fantasías por
el miedo a la muerte; creo en la ilusión ajena de que
alguien mágico vendrá a castigar al que hace el mal, dando
un equilibrio en "el bien y el mal", creo en que debo dar
tanto de mí, por una doctrina, sólo para no arder en el
fuego, creo sobre todo, en las falsas morales prepuestas
hace siglos, y sobre todo...............
¿Me expresé tan ridículo como pretendía?
¿O será que, existirá algo mágico, fuera de toda ley
física, que venga a hacernos "el parito" para cuando nos
chingue alguien? ¡naaa!..
....la vida es cruda, ¿y qué?......
....el mundo no es parte de nosotros, si no, nosotros
somos parte del mundo.
Como le gusta a la gente soñar.
A la mierda Jesús,
A la mierda el Buda,
A la mierda el Alá,
A la mierda Judá,
A la mierda Krishna,
A la mierda Rama,
A la mierda el karma...
En resumen, ¡¡¡a la mierda la fe!!!
...I do believe in a god, I believe in a being who is
above us, that is omnipotent, He loves us, gives us
happiness, which gave so much to us, I believe in the
I know there are mysteries that are sheltered by one being
only when our days are completed, and like that, I also
believe in good and evil, in balance and spiritual
justice, I believe that there's someone who wrote in
tablet our destinies, that we are predestined to its
powerful hand, I believe in his faith over all others, the
most accurate, in his doctrine, in its 12 trails, its 12
stars, the 12 apostles.
I believe in the righteous flame of souls, on the worlds
of the subsoil that eat away our flesh, for sins
multiplied with unimaginable pain. Just as I believe in
the almighty, I believe in the laws imposed by the Lord, I
believe in love and peace ...... But! As I believe in
that, I have in mind that, I believe in the selfish and
fearful image of man, in his dreams, his fantasies by fear
of death; I believe in the alien illusion that someone
magical will come to punish those that do evil, giving a
balance of "good and evil", I think that I should give so
much of me, for a doctrine, only not to burn in the fire,
I think especially, in the false morals spanning
centuries, and especially ...............
Did I expressed myself as ridiculously as I intended?
Or is that, there is something magical, beyond physical
law, which comes to us when someone screws us? Naaah!…
....life is harsh, so what?......
....the world is not part of us, otherwise, we are part of
How much people like to dream!
To hell with Jesus,
To hell with the Buddha,
To hell with Allah,
To hell with Judah,
To hell with Krishna,
To hell with Rama,
To hell with the karma...
In short, to hell with faith!
Una Revisión de
Nihilismo por Freydis, Junio 2012
En una forma por demás entusiasta y divertida el autor (Freydis)
nos da su visión de lo que para él significa el nihilismo. Desde
una definición de la creencia en nada, hasta una más explicada
de la negación de los valores socialmente aceptados. Además de
la fe, la teología, y por consecuencia Dios y un propósito final
de la vida.
que pudiera significar un vacío existencial con este tipo de
creencias, parece ser lo que le da su razón de vivir. Y sin
embargo acepta la paradoja que significa la fe firme en no tener
fe, la razón de vida de no tener razón de vivir, y su propósito
final en no tener un propósito.
muestran datos de los primeros nihilistas entre los filósofos
griegos como Georgias. Entre los primeros escritores modernos se
cita a Soren Aabye Kierkegaar y entre los primeros movimientos
al de los jóvenes rusos de mediados del siglo XIX.
nihilismo basa sus argumentos contra lo que rechaza: señalando
el abuso que desde el poder se ha hecho del manejo de la
historia, de la filosofía y los valores, de la justicia y de la
religión. Un resumen de su argumento podría ser que estamos
presos de ideas preconcebidas, apoyadas en el miedo a dejar de
existir. Ideas que de alguna forma nos tranquilizan de que nos
esforzamos hacia una meta superior de la que no tenemos ninguna
prueba. Y al estar tan aferrados a algo que nos prometa la
esperanza de no dejar de existir; somos esclavos de los líderes
que manejan las reglas con el afán de mantener su estatus quo.
El fin último del nihilismo vendría a ser la libertad. Sentirse
fuera del círculo de reglas y creencias sin fundamento, creyendo
sólo en lo que pueden tangiblemente probar. Creyendo que los
demás vivimos con culpa, en perpetua lucha interna para
comportarnos, asustados de ofender a Dios o a la moral.
Luis Arturo Huerta Rodríguez
Gustav, November 2011
Hello. So a good
while ago, I came to the conclusion that I basically agree with
every concept of Nihilism. There is just one thing that bothers
me, which is the fact that Nihilism disregards subjective
purpose, meaning and morality as it states that all of these
things means nothing, it ignores the fact that each an every
person, have some sort of personal code and meaning, not as an
objective inherent fact, but as some sort of rule-set and
situation which dictates and fulfils your life. It seems like
the sort of Nihilism that you talk about on your website, is
actually rather atheistic existentialistic, while other nihilism
is much more into the apathetic; "Nothing means anything and
everything is allowed, therefore I must use all my time during
drugs, not caring and taking no personal responsibility". By
definition atheistic existentialism is based on Nihilism taking
subjective matter and morality into mind. Nietzsche and Sartre
was some of the big pioneers of atheistic existentialism, and
both is based on the fight against superstition and false
principles such as theology and morality. What is your thought
about atheistic existentialism? And would it be false to
consider a lot of the content of your website more
existentialistic than nihilistic?
Thanks for your letter Gustav.
Using your definitions, yes I am much more in the category of
‘atheistic existentialistic’ than apathetic or solipsistic-type
nihilism. I also factor in historical people and events,
particularly the Russian revolutionaries of the 1860s
to give nihilism a political dimension and then you get Nihilism
with a capital N; circle back to Dmitrii Pisarev (Nihilist
spokesman and 19th century Russian literary critic): "What can
be broken, should be broken", and the core definition #1
and now you’re getting more of the picture.
ANUS a Cover
for Bogus Nationalism
J.C., October 2011
I'm writing to you mainly regarding ANUS, a site I have visited
occasionally since I was in high school. Initially it was
because I was becoming a fan of black metal and was fascinated
not only by the music but by the history and ideology
surrounding the bands. I could not find a better source for this
information till I read the book Lords of Chaos.
Over time I began reading their articles and FAQs. At first I
did not really understand nihilism and thought of it how
mainstream society would - losers in black trenchcoats who live
for nothing. This was during a relationship break up and
somewhat of an existential crisis. All I took from nihilism was
cynicism and misanthropy, as an angsty youth would.
Most recently after another break up (with the same person) I
found myself reading the site again. This time the concept of
nihilism really clicked in my head. It is not what I first
thought - a cynical and depressing philosophy. It is a
satisfying, naturalistic view of the world that I find
comforting. To me it is positive, almost uplifting, in my life.
This is probably because it addresses what I've been thinking
I kept reading ANUS, including interviews with Prozak, and I was
fascinated by him and his life. Obviously he is very
intelligent. But the more I read the more I suspected that
something was not right. Occasionally he would write something
that threw up a red flag. There was a hint of racism and
I have to say I do not align with any of those views and
wondered if this was a logical endpoint to nihilism. I rejected
these ideas and wondered if nihilism was something I really
agreed with. I looked at sites linked to ANUS and they were the
same. 95% content I agree with and 5% bile.
It should be mentioned that ANUS enjoys trolling, as do I, but I
found it immensely difficult to figure out whether they were
trolling or really were white supremacists hiding behind
philosophy. I was suspecting the latter as these views appeared
in subtle ways throughout my reading. Too subtle to be a troll.
I may be wrong but to me nationalism is incompatible with
nihilism. Personally I am not patriotic or nationalistic. I was
born in Australia. I like it here, but I could have easily been
born in India or China, and I suppose I would like it there too.
To me where you were born is as arbitrary as your name. Thus
intense nationalism and white supremacy is pure garbage and
shouldn't have anything to do with nihilism.
Your analysis of ANUS really pinpointed and expressed what was
bothering me about the site. There's a lot of great content but
something just seemed off. It brings relief to determine what
was wrong with it.
Admittedly I am a complete novice to the study of philosophy. It
is a subject I find interesting and I am going to pursue it. I
see this as a first step in a long journey. I am only 23 years
of age so I have a lot to learn. Apologies if this email is a
bit fragmented. I wrote this on my mobile phone while at work.
Thanks for your time. =
Nihilism is not
psychopathy, is it?
Avery, August 26, 2011
Whenever I read
Nihilists posts on certain forums, they call them selves
political nihilists, but they sound somewhat irrational. They
say that since they have no morals literally anything goes.
Without following morality they seem to think that there is
nothing wrong with killing, stealing, raping, etc. When I think
about it, doesn't this sound very anti-social? I can't imagine a
healthy society after a Nihilist revolution could function for
very long at all. Are these so-called Nihilists really what they
claim to be? Certainly there should be at least some kinds of
social agreements made between people who have to share
resources and living space with each other if there is to be any
harmony (your site makes Nihilism sound far from chaos). You
said it yourself cooperation gets us farther and conflict, and
that the ego can be a non pretty picture. And that we should
adapt to our environment while changing it. It seems like
without some kind of basic code such as this then chaos or
psychopathy would ensue. A combination of the socialization
process of childhood, self-discipline and common sense should
lead us to develop some kind of reasonable behavior. Your site
keeps mentioning death to morality, it is arbitrary, etc., which
sounds like what these so-called Nihilists I described earlier
sound like, but as you clarified in one of your articles, it
seems to mean being against religious morality. You've described
a Nihilist morality that should be followed. But this Nihilist
morality is still a morality, so it seems kind of confusing when
you tell others to discard their morals when really you want
them to follow this Nihilist morality.
Your website says to
be who you naturally are, to be responsible for your actions,
every benefit has a cost, love your friends, independent
thought, you reap what you sow. You say we need a code or
structure that we can actually follow in practice for mental
health. Match your words with actions, have an awareness of your
capacities, Measure acts against consequences. You say we need
guidelines in some form or another in order to function
collectively , and say that basic morality is hard-wired into
This has been stuck
on my mind for a while now. Your site says to reject false
values, while you try to provide what you think are true or
Nihilistic values. Which I agree some kind of reasonable code is
needed, but I think certain people are misinterpreting what your
saying to possibly justify crude actions. Have you noticed
Despite the crudeness of their statements, and the questionable
comprehension of those 'political nihilists' in their use of the
terminology, there is nonetheless a bald-faced honesty to it.
Those kinds of statements are illuminating because, in many ways
what they’re saying is just the kind of behavior that everyone
wants to do, at least sometimes, but won’t state openly. What’s
even worse are people who say one thing and do the opposite to
mask their true intentions, think of the harm that comes from
Priests cloaked in religious piety that rape boys with the
protection of the Church establishment.
that reversion to animal violence is there inside everyone, and
many psychological experiments have shown how easy it is to lose
the veneer of civilization if the mental and physical
environment supports it (like the Stanford prison experiment),
and indeed real world events have shown the same thing (like Pol
Pot’s Cambodia). Even more to the point, the vast majority of the
blame for the worst excesses belongs with the male ego,
possessing a particularly egregious obsession with property and
power. It's also worth considering the way that film and television are
so frequently used as reflections of these underlying
compulsions towards unacceptable behavior such as murder,
robbery, and so on, acted out in fiction but rarely in fact.
Nihilism is like a mirror, it helps us see things we would
otherwise overlook, or miss entirely because of our cultural and
real question is, why do we not rape, rob and steal every chance
we get? The reason is that (most) everyone learns otherwise
through the socialization process. Growing up we learn how to
behave around other people, and it has nothing to do with
religion and very little to do with manufactured morality codes
because it just happens naturally. Civil behavior is just a
natural fact, it’s an unavoidable necessity that emerges on its
own through normal healthy behavior and interactions, and in
fact it’s really the artificial moral codes and cultural
imposition of specious values that confuse things, and indeed
often make life much more difficult and miserable for everyone.
But that's also why it's so difficult to alter primary behavior
through morality rules in the adult world; if you don't learn it
in the formative years of childhood there isn't a whole lot we
can do about it afterwards, revolution or not.
if someone grows up and doesn’t learn these basic skills of
social interaction, and remains at the level of an infant (but
in the body of, and with the hormones of an adult), then that’s
when you get the psychological condition of a psychopath. Even
then, they still follow a moral code, it’s just a warped one
defined as ‘me first’ and without any foresight or consideration
for anyone else. I hasten to emphasize that this is ultimately a
self-defeating morality, but the psychopath isn’t capable of
figuring that out, or adjusting their behavior; more mature and
intelligent people have to step in and stop them. Similarly,
even the ones who claim to be amoral still have a moral code.
Infants up until about eighteen months of age live in an
'eternal present', only reacting to their immediate needs and
surroundings, although they can still form memories. The ability
to discern that others have mental states different than your
own doesn't develop until about the age of three or four.  If any
of these stages of typical childhood development fail, for
whatever reason - psychological, biological, or environmental -
that can lead to socially dysfunctional behavior later in life,
from autism to psychosis.
Morality confuses many because of the difficulty they have
distinguishing between the artificial overlay, composed mostly
of abuse and false-justifications, and the underlying grid,
often given the same label of 'morality', that emerges
automatically as a natural product of evolution and social
interactions, and not just for humans but even among other
animals. Apparently, even some who call themselves 'political
nihilists' suffer from the same confusion and may attempt to
exploit false conceptions of morality to further an abusive
agenda of self-interest; but this is certainly no different, and
certainly much more transparent, than the same behavior
that occurs within the realm of religiously-derived morality!
superficial paradox of existence is that we have to cooperate to
survive, as the social beings that we biologically are and
always have been, yet the nefarious ego that occupies our minds
only cares about one thing: our own egotistical self.
September 11, 2011, with additional material added
In Search or Time, by Dan Falk, 2008, pg. 114-115.
Avery, July 2011
You say Nihilism challenges the assumptions supporting the
common value pity. Pity by definition being "the feeling or
sorrow and compassion caused by suffering and misfortunes of
others". How is pity based on any assumptions if it is a
feeling? And aren't feelings of sympathy just as natural as
feelings of empathy? Isn't caring for others (which overall
helps the species) considered a plus? Isn't collective well
being based on preventing and trying to solve problems that face
us? You do say that cooperation is more beneficial than
conflict, but what use would cooperation be if we didn't feel
bad for others? If we take a problem like world hunger and say
that it needs to be fixed, that involves sympathy for those who
are hungry, feelings of pity, which would then involve forces
coming together to fix the problem (cooperating). Why do you say
pity is a value? When religion tells us we have to care for the
unfortunate there by making it a belief? I agree that making
people believe something (even if it's caring for others) should
be avoided, but that caring should come from reasoning such as
"wouldn't you want others to do the same for you?" and human
nature. Human nature being that which comes naturally, and I
naturally feel like compassion is more beneficial to the human
race than "dog-eat-dog" survival of the fittest. Any way. Thats
just my thoughts on the subject. Maybe you could clarify further
what you meant.
That part was written a long time ago. Thinking
back, what I was trying to convey wasn’t about the feeling
of pity, it was a challenge against the intended effect
Why does anyone feel pity? Isn’t much of pity
just a smug sense of superiority too? Most assume that pity
helps the suffering, but in many cases it only makes them worse,
precisely because it’s emotional rather than something that can
be measured or verified to check whether it’s achieving the
intended purpose. As the old phrase goes, ‘the road to hell is
paved with good intentions.’
Pity maybe isn’t the best word to use, or rather
that statement needs more explanation. I still like to challenge
empty pity. Empathy is what I would rather promote – i.e. trying
to comprehend the situation of others in order to better
cooperate, as appropriate, and interact with them on a more
functional and mutually beneficial level.
Thank you for the response!
Your site is easy to navigate, I'm sorry I missed that part
about the "N" design. I have ordered a copy of your book and
look forward to reading it. Your explanation you gave on how you
came across nihilism as a word and how you felt is well phrased
and I can relate. I had no way to put my feelings to words when
I was younger, and coming across it helped me begin a struggle
that I'm grateful I'm experiencing as it has contributed in
shaping me and my approach with authorities, influencial
beliefs, and even social cues.
I look forward to it as I'm sure I'll learn something new.
Thoughts on Nihilism
Leizar Rock via
Facebook, March 2011
Pienso que las respuestas estan ahí... y que muchas veces en
nuestra "humana" arrogancia no las miramos... por que nos
sentimos mejores que eso... idealizamos... suponemos,
interpretamos "yo soy el centro del universo"... Me agrada el
nihilismo... me agrada exactamente por eso... por que no es una
respuesta, el nihilismo no te dice "hey aqui está la respuesta a
la vida, a tu sufrimiento, a las cosas"... el nihilismo me ha
servido para bajar de ese pedestal, y aceptar que la humanidad
se sobrevalora... a mi parecer toda religión, ideal, y moral es
un intento de construir un altar a una humanidad que no somos...
un altar donde se reflejan las fantasias y frustraciones de un
grupo de personas... un altar a nuestro propio ego...
ironicamente descuidamos el ego en nombre de ese altar...
queriendo ser mas "humanos", mas "justos"... mas libres...
curiosamente, cuando se deja de interpretar, las respuestan
llegan... !siempre han estado ahí!... es entonces cuando
realmente el universo
está para nosotros, pues tenemos la habilidad de decifrarlo, una
habilidad que solo puede ser usada cuando se tiene la suficiente
I think the answers are there ... and many times in our "human"
arrogance we don't look ... because we feel that we are better
than that ... we idealize ... assume, we interpret "I am the
center of the Universe" ... I like nihilism ... that's exactly
why I like it ... because it's not an answer, nihilism does not
say "hey, here's the answer to life, your suffering, to all
things" ... nihilism has helped me to get off of that pedestal,
and accept that humanity is overrated ... I think all religion,
ideal, and moral is an attempt to build an altar to a humanity
that we are not ... an altar that reflects the fantasies and
frustrations of a group of people ... an altar to our own ego
... ironically we neglect the ego in the name of the altar ...
wanting to be more "human", more "fair" ... more free ...
Curiously, when you stop to interpret, the answers arrive ...
They have always been there! ... And is then when the Universe
really is for us, because we have the ability to decode it, a
skill that can only be used when you have enough humility...
Infinite Lives in Infinity?
Jason S., March 2011
In nihilism, it's
believed you have one life. Yet this overlooks the concept of
infinity... we had infinity to get to where we are and how much
time will be left after infinity is over and everyone on Earth
dies out? Another infinity. There is no half of infinity.
Science seems to support this possibility with multiverses...
the death of one universe is the creation of a new one... an
infinite number of universes... even so, just on the logic of
the existence of infinity... what do nihilists say about the
existence of an infinite number of lives?
Thanks for the
bring up an interesting point for consideration. With infinite
time and space anything can happen – an infinite number of
times. But infinity is really just an error message in
mathematics, so no one really knows what it means because it
doesn’t exist in any way we can measure.
universe we inhabit has an observable limit and no information
can be transferred beyond it. Although some scientists are
speculating that some form of signature from previous universes
is imprinted on our own. This is fantastic if true because we
may be able to learn about what’s outside or massive bubble. But
nonetheless, for our own personal concerns we will never be able
to communicate with any of our other lives (assuming they exist
in an assumed infinite meta-universe). So for all practical
purposes we still only have one human life.
Peaceful or Violent Protest?
Vic N., Sweden, February 2011
I dont understand
why its prefered to protest non violently before using violence.
I is probably too simple too say since there is no right or
wrong they are equally prefarable so lets not use that argument
Maybe its better to skip the non violence when the whole reason
why one may be protesting is because authority is not listning
in the first place and that wont change anytime soon. Hence only
violence is the only option for change and as such it must be
prefered over non violence protests.
Infact why even bother talking peacefully too and about a "bad"
authority, after all actions speaks louder than words dont they?
Yet it seems as you have come too another conclusion. That can
only mean two things either you countered my feeble arguments or
never thought of them which brings us back to my first question:
What is the reason behind your conclusion?
Im sorry for my bad english, its not my first language but I
hope you get what Im trying to say..
Well, my main reason for starting with non-violence is that
image and symbolic-reasoning are very powerful forces in the
public mind. Public reaction has to be considered because it is
the public that are the supporters of the effort, in one way or
another. So if your group starts out from the very beginning
stating their aim and sole method is violent rebellion, it
restricts your range of actions and potentially alienates
supporters. Except in extreme cases where it’s already a violent
conflict, jumping to the later stages undercuts the development
of the rebellion.
But anyway, by starting with peaceful resistance nobody is
losing anything, and most places in need of rebellion are
already so militaristic and authoritarian that all you have to
do is put a bunch of people in a public square in a passive
demonstration and the police will start shooting anyway, and
then it’s on to the next stage with all the responsibility for
starting the violence on the shoulders of the corrupt
No worries on the language, I have an idea what you are getting
Ahh yes in my
thoughts I simply assumed that the protesters already had public
support, a critical misstake wont make again.
Your second segement in your reply however has practically no
use for me. See I live in Sweden, perhaps the most democratic
and uncorrupt country in the world. If we swedes ever
"street-protest" its infront of an embassy complaing about other
As such its pretty impossible to gain any form of support from
the public by non-violent protests because the goverment just
responds "Yes yes we will fix it later" but ofcourse later never
comes, in contrast to their promises to fix it. The real problem
is that it seems to keep the public happy and any change in
goverment wont be needed in their eyes.
While our society seems like a good example its still built on
the flaws of morality not to mention its extreme use of
utilitarianism as base for laws. I am starting to believe that
the public is too unaware of the sinister nature of morality and
the fatal flaw(s) of utilitarianism to support a new
(nihilistic) society. Could I be right? How do you think I
P.S. I really enjoy the Counterorder site. I dont think I need
to point out why, you probably get enough of that but know that
I am pleased to say it improves my English vocabulary.
I’m glad to have more appreciative readers in Sweden!
You bring up an important point: the more content the population
is the more difficult it is to rally support for change. Part of
the battle is just raising awareness in the public’s mind,
getting the word out and explaining and this struggle typically
takes years if not decades.
As an alternate example, the Red Army Faction felt they were in
the same position where the German people were to brainwashed by
consumerism and too fat and happy to recognize the corruption
behind their so-called democracy.
used violence in an effort to wake up the people, and the world.
It’s certainly a fascinating saga, a rather mixed success, but
one that’s full of lessons for today.
Also, I read this page a few days ago, kind of interesting use
of peaceful protest for revolution:
Yes, while the RAF, IRA and other revolutionaries had somewhat
"questionable" motives the lessons learned from them are not: It
is an absolute must too have the publics support. It does not
matter how good your idea and actions are, you will inevitable
fail without the publics support.
As such the smart revolutionary target the people in the society
because its the people that is the society but not with fear,
with reason which nihilism is all about. Which brings me to my
The public is honestly to stupid. It is only the ones with
abnormally high interllect that takes intrest in philosofy and
politics. They seem to be so, how should I put it, trapped in
our society, so hopelessly dependable on all the bs that the
politicans and rich feed them. Unwilling to listen to reason out
of fear that they will lose what little things they have now.
I start to feel that nihilism is too good for the public, maybe
the world is not ready for nihilism yet, after all about 95%
humans belive in some kind of god. Do not get me wrong, I would
not hesitate to kill them all if that is what it takes to build
a nihilistic society. But those remaining 5 % would simply go
back to our corrupt society - still unwilling too listen to
The very word 'nihilism' makes people think I am some kind of
depressive suicidal lunatic. The cruel irony. I feel unable to
unable to point the people to nihilism because they do not want
to listen, all they want is to sit in the gutter of bs and
misery by the despots and rich alike. You ever feel the same?
know, it can get frustrating at times. But I’ve found many
people that are paying attention and genuinely want to do
something about the situation, like you. It’s not hopeless at
Most people are just slow, what seems obvious to us now they’ll
figure it out in ten years; they don’t want to stand out or do
anything unless they have to, and fear anything controversial.
Who was it that said today’s heresies are tomorrows virtues?
Nietzsche once wrote, "All good things were formerly bad things;
every original sin has turned into an original virtue."
Nihilism, Art and Music
Alan Z., February 2011
I just wanted to thank you for your eloquent comments on
nihilism. It is difficult to find explanations of the nihilistic
world-view that aren't tinged with negativity and destructive
When I declare myself a nihilist, the response is often "Why not
just kill yourself ?" Your thesis has given me new ways to
verbalize my response. My hope is to convey that absence of
knowledge is power, and that the search for God ends with us.
I do wonder if you have any thoughts about "beauty". Do you
think it has any importance, meaning or substance?
Thanks for the letter and I’m glad you appreciate my website on
In my book ‘Nihilism’ I wrote on beauty and art (extracted):
think beauty can only be generated by natural forces and
mimicked by the human artist. True beauty resides within the
wispy colors of a nebular cloud or the intricate veins of a
green leaf, hence the art most widely deemed 'beautiful'
consists of accurate depictions of nature, be it an Ingres
portrait or a Church nature scene. Otherwise aesthetic values
are primarily subjective and ancillary to the issue of art
anyway, it just makes a good thing better.
is simply a means of communication, and whatever means that’s
effective is valid, and then some. It's not about style or
training or name or prestige, it's about evoking emotion and
ideas. Art is simply a vehicle, a means of conveying a message
but it also contains significant subjective qualities.
Ultimately art should be more than just a source of passive
bemusement; it should be a participatory activity. When art is a
recipe rather than static monstrosities collecting dust in
pretentious museums, art where the viewer is part of the
process, they become artists as well.
I found your ideas about art very interesting. I'd say you're a
kindred spirit of John Cage and that's a high compliment.
Ironically, Cage was on the frontier of abandoning beauty as a
prerequisite for music. I'm a composer who has always seen
fractal geometry in nature as the purest beauty. The great
composers of the past have had (except Liszt) little interest in
the minutia of society. For them, the music itself was of
paramount importance and the only inspiration. Yet the ego will
inevitably impose it's force even in a composition that is 4'33"
That said, I think the composers who stayed within the fractal
framework of western tonality had the greatest success. This is
due to the gravity of the naturally occurring harmonic series
found in tubes and strings, and their evolution into a 12 tone
scale and the major/ minor system. It was our drive to symmetry
that made it inevitable. And our quest to control nature.
I think my original question came more from a crisis of faith,
and to whether such a luxury as art can be honorable in times of
such global crisis. What if any difference will it make? Would
it not be more beneficial to collect plastic bottles from the
shorelines? Or- does our drive toward beauty and symmetry play a
vital role in our evolution and future?
School Project in Nihilism
Karen C., January 2011
I am a high school student, and I have to do a school project
called "Hard made easy" in which I have to explain a difficult
concept in an easy way. I chose Nihilism and wanted to thank you
for the information your page provided me. I also wanted to ask
you what do you think Nihilism can give to sixteen year old
Thank you for the information and your attention.
The first point I want to clarify, to minimize confusion, is
that 'nihilism' is a general term that covers a lot of ground:
while 'Nihilism' is more specific and generally refers to a
certain attitude and worldview, with historical antecedent in
the Russian revolutionaries:
But more than that it does have a continuous thread up to the
present, reference biographies page:
http://www.counterorder.com/nihilismbios.html#6 , and is
often seen as being similar to anarchism.
So, with that in mind, the most concise material I have to help
in your task is the pamphlet, available here:
Nihilism can help sixteen-year old students by giving them a
different, and intellectually challenging view of the world, and
if considered, a skeptical attitude that can still can compel
them to overcome passivity and apathy and become engaged with
Josh B., January 2011
It is just as you say, the discovery of the word and the idea of
nihilism came as a great relief to me when I finally looked in
to it a couple weeks ago (I'm 28, a little late). The only thing
I knew about it before was from the movie The Big Lebowski =P I
had already been thinking and feeling this way for a long time
now, but instead of doing something with it I was just
influenced to believe that my thinking was just unhealthy,
self-destructive, inappropriate.. So needless to say, I have
been in a state of mental turmoil for some time now underneath
What is the point? Are most of these people I'm surrounded by
seeing the same reality I am? (and if so how are they not
appalled?) Is conforming to these social norms no matter how
much I disagree the only way I can hope to be "happy"? Is this
what the people I've known that have killed themselves were
thinking about? These are questions I'd have going through my
mind a lot. Through feeling this way but not necessarily being
able to correlate the thoughts I had created a very unpleasant
mental living environment for myself.
After my father died abruptly a few months ago as a result of an
accident while working on his house I had really begun to
question things even more than I had in the past. The futility
of most of our efforts in life were right in my face to see and
consider. Things have been difficult and confusing for me to try
to make sense of lately. Finding your website this
evening/morning at 3:30am has been a wonderful experience for me
on a few different levels and I just wanted to thank you for the
time and effort you have put in to it - to let you know it's had
a profound effect on THIS person. Keep it up! and take it easy..
Thanks for your letter, it’s interesting to read how nihilism
has impacted other people around the world. And it’s always nice
to find out the impact was appreciated!
I hope you don’t feel as isolated anymore.
arguments against abortion get the comic treatment they
By Pope, October 2010
By Pope, September 2010
There has only been
a few books i have read with the potential to create a
psychological, and sociological shift in thinking patterns, let
alone, evolutionary. I have actually described your book to my
friends, as that feeling you get in the morning when you wipe
the sleep out of your eyes.
Is nihilism the only logical result of atheism? I have
begun to think that it is and I would be more than happy to
share some of my writings with you.
What is your view of the matter?
In theory I think you’re basically correct. In
practice though, if you state that nihilism is the end result of
atheism it makes the religious happy and offends many atheists,
because nihilism is typically treated as a pejorative term.
Christians and the like will tell everyone – ‘see this terrible
condition of nihilism is what you get when you become an
atheist’ and atheists will try to defend their position as being
entirely reasonable and not 'dark and evil' like nihilism.
In reality it’s the belief in moral superiority
that generates most of the ‘evil’, while crime, violence and
similar undesirable social events are produced not through lack
of morality but a variety of environmental and biological
factors. But this realization is much more advanced than most
people are capable of grasping, mostly because they're
constantly told otherwise by moral and religious authorities.
So, I think the major challenge here is to
figure out how to get to a place where we can all live within
the realm of practical reality where these beliefs and
assumptions are overcome. But how do we get there? Are nihilism
and atheism two separate paths, or does one lead through to the
Nihilism clearly relates that nothing has any final or absolute
meaning or value except the meaning and value we say and agree
it has. And this is a factual truth, but it is only half of the
view or one side of the coin, as-it-were.
What I like about your site and your insight Freydis, is your
acknowledgement that there are values, relative to reality
as-it-is. That is the other side of the coin so often missing in
most nihilist investigative study.
Kudos to you and an incredible wealth of information.
G.R. [January 2010]
You are one antihero among few in life.
Thanks for the webpage.
-alex [ October 2009]
I've been reading articles on your site for quite some time and
i just wanted to say i'm impressed.
Everything i've read has been well written and backed up and
your not just taking random stabs in the dark.
I've just one question though.
How are you supposed to implement Nihilism without destroying
Freedom in this day and age usually is the destruction of your
own life, well when i talk about life i mean (work, the law) ect.
I have to go to work, or i cannot support myself. I have to
follow the law or i am punished, usually fined.
How would you go about dealing with this? If you were fined
would you just not pay the fine and argue that they have no
right to fine you for something so trivial as lets say driving
without a license in a hypothetical situation?
- S.L. [August 2009]
Well, obviously unless you want
to end up in jail or just have a very difficult life you have to
pick your battles. And since we all live in a society, and not
in a cave on a desert island, we inevitably have to make
compromises between our personal freedom and the freedom of
others. But this isn't necessarily a negative at all because the
flip side is that through cooperation we can gain far more than
we could ever have just on our own.
By gaining greater insight into how these structures and
relationships are established and how they work we can make
smarter decisions for ourselves and for those around us. The
problem is that too many people take these things, like morality
and authority, for granted and just assume that they have to be
the way they are when there's really many different and
effective forms social structures can take -- some much more
hospitable and productive than others.
everything to do.
nothingness for there is nothing to do.
you have nothing all you say
nothingness for nothing when everything you have
nothingness to do when there's nothing at all
nothingness is everything to do cause there is nothing at
Dull girl, dull
her lot is.
What a nasty being is man for life.
Nothing but hopes for a man to live.
You see it all for where there is nothing.
For her shiny eyes life is a nasty lie to see.
Poetry by Johnny Blank, July
I was recently was going over your site as i have a couple times
in the past.
I'm still amazed everytime I read the essays on the site how
refreshing it is to read something coherent and objective about
all the bullshit that we're fed everyday. If most people would
sit down and honestly questioned their beliefs for a few minutes
a lot of religious americans (86% according to a survey i read)
would probably come to similar conclusions.
The problem with
most people is that instead of taking their religion seriously
as an explanation for reality, they hold onto it blindly,
because of some emotional "fix". I was born and raised a xtian
and when I began questioning the beliefs that my parents held so
blindly, my questioning was met with considerable hostility. I
began to wonder, "how can people believe something without
questioning it? Truth is, by definition, something that simple
questions should not break down, but should rather enforce." So
now when I come into contact with someone that believes in some
form of metaphysical concept, I ask them to give me a clear
definition of it. Most of the time they can't, and when they do,
it is generally self-contradictory, or has circular logic. I
finally realized that my parents hated me questioning their
beliefs because they couldn't answer my questions and didn't
want to think about it. Possibly because the questions that I
brought up actually made them question it. And they wanted to
have faith in it. Faith is such a useless concept. Wanting to
believe something means nothing, otherwise a lot of wacky shit
would be true. As kierkegaard discovered, you can only have
faith if there is already a lack of evidence.
Enough of my
history, I'm sure you don't want to hear my life story. I just
want to congratulate you for having a nice, organized web site.
I also want to congratulate you for having the one of the most
common sense websites on the internet. Thank you for your time
and for your enjoyable essays.
[January 26, 2009]
I have truly been
enlightened by the anti-philosophy. Thank you for giving me the
answers to the questions that no god, or politic can even dream
of answering for me. I had always known there were others out
there like me that sought something beyond the moral squabbles
of humanity. Your purpose is the truth, and at 20 years of age,
I am far ahead of anybody around me, know matter what there age,
education, or status may be.
I know the truth.
[January 2, 2009]
Translation of the
Die letzte Glocke (The Last Bell), from the original German into English by Arimahn, October 2008:
sickly, rains down on glass
Shadow phantoms jump from concrete to asphalt
Dirt, stench and human queues drift by
And I, yes I, are one among many
Just run, little humans, circle (around the) streets
Increase your goods and chattels
But soon, yes soon, they'll come
Droning clouds, black as Death
Ever faster the wheel is turning
(with seeing eyes...)
Ever deeper is the fall
(... you are fleeing into your own tomb)
Ever farther swings the scythe
Until the yield is rotting on the ground, plagued by rats
The last bell, it crashes
Down into the dirt of this world
[Her] bronze tone sounds mute
Into the dust
The last bell, it crashes/ /down into reality
Neon-Sea, diode-glow, cascades full of sound
Confusion and Temptation give an unholy escort
Leave me be, I'm not buying, not even your happiness
Because I, yes I, can reveal your lies
Just build your
Hybris' flight is rising higher
But soon, yes soon, cracks will rend this
of Earth's bones
thousand years it gave the beat
Surrounded by cannons, (in) the blood of (the) extermination
Paved with the gold of our freedom it plays the song
Of assimilation, just hear it scream for your soul
How ever we're to turn and twist
Nothing's to do, seal the old casket
Whatever we aspire to, long for in pain/
Goodbye, occident, we extinguish the candles
If you just knew or imagined...
All the illusiveness is capturing you
But I, yes I, walk unseen
[A] Burning torch among the madness of this world
Ever louder the roof is cracking
(With hearing ears...)
Ever farther the pillar is swinging
(...you entomb yourselves in a house of sand)
Ever faster the beam is falling
(Dust to Dust)
And from it's tower the symbol of the occident comes tumbling
"Peace on earth?"
...this makes me laugh!
Let this phantasm spark the fire!
To all of man's liking.
What do I care for the world you are ripping apart?
I just wanted to
thank you for the information on your website. I never truly
understood the meaning or purpose of nihilism until now. This is
exactly how I have come to perceive myself and the world around
me. It is good to know that I am not the only one that thinks
the meaning of life is simply existence and that almost
everything around us is completely irrelevant. Only a free mind
can come to this realization. We are few and must spread the
word to devolve our species. If not, all that will be left is
human remains, gold bars and nuke casings.
Thanks again, Joel W. [June 2008]
Tarr, March 2008
Surround Human Beings,
Cloud up their Minds,
Confine them to Binds,
What do words mean?
And what do thoughts say?
When they take your whole life through monotonous Days?
Dissimulate fear, Believe in a God,
A reason to breathe and resume senseless Thoughts,
Cling to Beliefs, For they're all that you got,
Take off your vizard and cry when you're Caught,
Beliefs are the things that you think that you know,
Seeds in the fallow of a mind you can sow,
Beliefs are the things with potential to grow,
Go to the market and make yourself blow.
Soak in ideas, continue to till,
Beliefs spur a passion that's willing to kill.
Disown your brother, because he is gay,
Follow the rules that you have to obey.
That fellows' religion, is Different from Mine!
Ignorant fool, My God's more Divine!
The trees stand tall, they think not at All,
And when their time comes they surrender and fall,
Pertinacious till' they,
Succumb to a Pall,
Humans are desperate and grasp at it all,
Surrender your feelings, surrender beliefs,
Surrender ideas of duality,
Have a mind willing, For Eternal Release,
Until this is done you will never be Free.
Hey there, fellow
I just wanted to write to you and let you know how thoroughly
impressed that I am with your counterorder site. It is engaging,
enlightening, compelling, and just simply mentally stimulating.
Your essays are concise and are in every way copiously logical
and irrefutable. We agree on every single point, yet I couldn't
have said or written anything more proficiently than you did.
I'd love to see a theist try to battle your wit and concise
Not to just kiss your fanny incessantly here... but seriously,
I've done quite a bit of reading and research myself on nihilism
and the quest for rationality in general, and few have had as
compelling arguments and overall quality presentation of the
ideology as yourself. You really have a strong command of
language and the said rhetoric, and should be published. I'd
certainly buy a copy.
Please don't feel obligated to write back. I am writing in
extollment! Thank you so much for your site, and of course all
of the years' worth of hard work and thought that you have put
into it. I'm thoroughly relishing!
CM in NJ 
"When nothingness is shown, Limitlessness is
the apparent nothing"
-Philip Tarr, 2007
The droning of Human Animals could resemble
Sounds of industrialization mimic there internal dialogue
Their purpose. Building a factory of thought's driven by
Droning, Droning on. We cant escape it's blast furnace of
age old ideals.
-Philip Tarr, 2006
I don't want a false reality/
one with an American sponsored mentality/
black and white is not my fixation/ Ill never recite to that
absolute power - No absolute truth- those who have the most
have the least proof - No absolute meaning is needed to find
reason why we live or why we die- Uniform ideas are set in
of free thought is systematically intone/ my path will avert
my arms will not carry the burden of mans law- We all have
the ability to
question/ thoughts are unrestricted they move freely from
horrifying glimpse of our existence/ a possible future is
Doomed Youth, 11.01.07
I'd like to start off by saying that I enjoy
reading the CounterOrder, and I agree with most of the
points you've listed.
After reading the section titled "Death to Purpose," you
noted "if your just going to die then what's the point of
anything?" Now being a nihilist myself, I completely agree
with this statement. The only question I have to that
statement is basically what should determine the level of
danger we subject ourselves to? Disregard for our well-being
is self-destruction, it's having a death wish, not nihilism.
Is it that we should be nonchalant about life/death, and
ourselves in the bigger picture? This is what I understood
from your quote. Please explain if possible.
Well, my message wasn't quite
that simple. By asking the rhetorical question I was trying
to convey that if all you live for is to die then there's no
(other) point to anything you do in between now and the end
point. So no I don't think nihilism has to be a death wish
for the self at all. The physical body is of limited
endurance but we as intelligent human beings exist in other
realms besides just the physical body, we have minds and a
consciousness and we can think up new ideas, ruminate on
existing ideas, invent, destroy and pass on both our genetic
material and our mental ideas as well. Don't sell your
existence short, use every minute of it!
I am currently studying sociology at an
advanced level in education and recently came across a
criticism of post-modernism; that it contradicts itself in
that it refuses meta-narratives but it itself appears to
take the meta-narrative form. I was hoping for an
explanation on what the nihilist stance was on
meta-narratives and whether promoters would consider
nihilism an overall, all-encompassing movement itself?
All help appreciated as a matter of interest.
Anonymous interested individual
The more I've studied postmodernism the less substance I can
find in it. Any objective analysis of the whole
postmodernism language and set of ideas has to conclude that
it is either a bad joke taken seriously or one of the
greatest academic frauds perpetrated on an unsuspecting
So to answer your question then, I'm not sure what a
'meta-narrative' is really supposed to mean and it would
undoubtedly depend on the context anyway, but I'm going to
assume the primary intent is to try and construct an all
encompassing explanation of the universe and events in
general. In that regard nihilism leads us to a few basic
conclusions. Much of what we think of the world and events
around us is based on perceptions, impressions that are
often misleading or just plain inaccurate. Consistent rules,
physical laws, are evident and significant but any
all-encompassing purpose or design of things is not evident.
In other words no ultimate purpose to anything on a cosmic
scale can be found. Now we can certainly go farther than
that but for now I'll just stop there.
I'm currently doing a university essay on consumerism. I was
interested to know your opinions on the role consumerism and
materialism play in the part of nihilism. I understand that
consumerism is only a very tiny fragment of the nihilistic
ideals but was interested to know what you thought
consumerism has done to western society in general.
Many thanks, Karen
seems to me that consumerism as we think of it today has its
origins in the post WWII era of industrial production surplus,
the result of mass production techniques and the commodities
made available by a worldwide transportation system coupled with
the socio-political need to maintain minimal unemployment. In
the 1950s America propaganda pushed on the public made it clear
that the duty of every citizen in a 'free' capitalistic country
was to buy as many products as they could. Not surprisingly a
materialistic consumer driven society emerged and has been
refined over the decades since then. Consequently, the dominant
value system is structured upon spending and acquiring money and
increasingly the morality of good and bad are measured using
The beauty of this new morality is the quantifiable nature of
it. This is a radical departure from all known previous moral
orders that have been mostly arbitrary having been based on
habit and tradition with the express, if often unstated, purpose
of keeping things from changing.
This is a remarkable development in human history but it clearly
leaves much to be desired since as we know capital is a sticky
substance - it makes the rich richer and the poor poorer.
That this new morality is materialistic, quantifiable, and often
merit-based and change friendly is not undesirable, and indeed
these qualities are an inevitable consequence of rational
development. Rather, the source of the problem is that the
equation here is incomplete. The consumerist, capitalistic value
system is circular and self-referential; it fails to include the
negative externalities of industrial production, for example.
Nor is it able to include intangible qualities such as beauty or
friendship. Further, the moral foundation of this value system
is based on a tautology in that rich is good and poor is bad,
that winners win and the losers lose and the winners are
perceived as being inherently better than the losers – a flawed
interpretation of Darwinism twisted and perverted to
substantiate a preordained conclusion.
The value of money is not being questioned or even being
measured in a valid context. People structure their entire lives
based on the search for monetary wealth (and the products it can
buy), it is the desire for money just to have more money. The
effort is pointless because it has no context just as consumers
are divorced from meaning and a separate identity outside of the
money loop. Consumers are strongly discouraged from finding or
forming independent meaning and identity and especially from
questioning the established value system of consumer driven
capitalism, just as under more traditional moral authority
Taking a grand view of events I have to conclude that the moral
values of contemporary consumer driven capitalism are an
intermediate stage in the progression towards a system that
adequately includes human needs and the needs of the natural
environment around us.
nihilism, calls to mind mythology and the iconic monad of
the Seraphim, an order of angels whose faces were forever
concealed deeply in the folds of their wings. Everybody
would like to see what lies behind the face of being,
existence, truth, nihilism, et cetera, but we shall never
see inside. Only the liar will. The wings are a shield and a
lie form what would instantly kill us, or what would
instantly drive us to kill ourselves.
Also the sun. Don't think you can get to the center, because
you can't. Burn in it if you want to go.
The core of being is nothingness, which should transcend our
terrible associations with nothingness -- the images and
tones are of mythic stock, that they inspire awe and beauty
in this waste we are mired in. We should always see wings
even in the dark. I find pleasure in the idea that nihilism
is an inevitable phase in the cycle of some mystical kind of
human transcendence. I want to be able to call all beings
nihilists, and believe that many know that they deny life or
affirm it, in whatever actions or non-actions that
I want nihilism to be the art of being. The awareness of an
art of being.
Life is. Nihilism is.
But I could just as well be spouting bullshit to please
myself, the pretender that I am. Why and what am I saying?
Who knows who tells the truth, or how, as if it were
possible that there was a set of truths to tell. This is
life as it runs itself. No matter if you tell the truth, the
truth cannot be told, only passively witnessed alone in the
quick motions of a life that doesn't bow to adjectives.
There is no intimacy for those who deny life, just insanity
and the unfulfilled lust for intimacy. Void. I don't want to
act toward anything. I just want to die.
Poetry, art, homosexual crucifixions... ouch.
By anonymous, December 2005.
One of the
interesting paradoxes inherent within nihilism is that is
seems to promote individuality by suggesting that the
individual doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things.
Nihilism can work with existentialism as well as hedonism to
form the ideal philosophy (or anti-philosophy) which centers
around the individual's decision to reject authority (God,
government, traditional thought, etc.) in favor of creative
and critical thinking. Hedonism can indeed lead to
enslavement since a person is capable of allowing his
pleasures to ruin his life. However, responsible hedonism
can lead to pleasure. Slavery to one’s compulsions is
essentially hedonism gone wrong. Then again, does pleasure
exist if it is contingent upon the immediate present? Since
desires need to be fulfilled each time they arise, how can
one be happy from the fulfilling of an immediate urge? Those
same urges may come back and haunt you moments later. Does
the self really exist, if a person is capable of changing
his self to adapt to different environments? Many people try
to be themselves which is a contradiction of the concept
Happiness is every bit a societal construct as is love. Sex
is instinctual; love is utopian. Similarly, seeking pleasure
is instinctual; happiness is utopian. You cannot achieve
happiness since it is transitory. Christianity states that
eternal happiness comes when one lives a good, “Christian”
life. However, people are incapable of being happy on a
consistent basis, and therefore it is illogical to think
that life after death allows the self to stop being human,
and turn into some sort of vegetative angel-like state.
Humans are imperfect and are capable of good and evil. In
fact, it is silly that society tries to dichotomize
everything: good and bad, moral and immoral, black and
white, democrat and republican, etc. Humans are too complex
to be categorized by those silly labels.
Nihilism is a foundation for which to build your own
philosophies on. It is a rejection of morality, religion,
rules, government, etc., all of which are attempting to
oppress the individual and scare him into a life of
compliance. A true self derives from critical thinking,
personal philosophies, and an understanding of the
hypocrisies permeating the world we live in. Embrace
nihilism by letting go of preconceived notions. By
John Mancuso April,
< Click here to
view more letters and comments on Page Two >
We lived together in the arms of an insane culture, fragmented in
business deals and passions, blasting through glittering
intersections and subway tunnels, surrounded in cafés by mirrored
brilliance; the streets ribbons of coloured light, the bars packed
with shimmering liquors, conference tables and dernier cri; every
hour something new, every day a problem solved, every week a
sensation. - Ernst Jünger, Germany (circa 1914)