I've spent a lot of time thinking about this board, and one thing that bothers me a little, besides the hurr tough guy attitude some people have, is this:
12. "You take things too seriously... lighten up. It's just entertainment...."
Your main problem, I suspect, is not that I take things too seriously — after all, you have no idea how much or little time I spend on this — but that I take them seriously at all. What you find offensive is that I consider the crap you like to be a subject of some importance and interest, that I apply certain critical standards to it, that I look at it in a context slightly wider than your lifetime's collection of navel lint....
In which case, you're damned right I take things seriously, you slack-jawed waste of space. Let me tell you a secret: the only people who ever did anything good, did it seriously. In particular, the only people who were ever entertaining took their entertainment seriously. The best comedians are always dead serious about comedy, studying it in depth, constantly exploring comic ideas, tirelessly working to improve their art — in fact, only serious people are ever funny. The real humourless bores are the slackers, the laid-back, the shallow, the trivial: people who spend their lives on their arses, sucking candy, swallowing the shit that's fed to them.
Serious people take an active interest and joy in the world; they participate in it, they strive to improve it, through their actions, through their art, through their presence. When serious people do things, they try to do them well; they don't settle for mediocrity in themselves, or in others. Unserious people — people like you — are the opposite: they settle for ignorance, they're content with crap, they're happy to be second-rate, and get second-rate treatment in return. Serious people make a serious contribution to the world, while you and other slackers contribute nothing but an ever-rising pile of human effluent.
Okay, so it's more about the kind of jackasses that use "It's just entertainment" to excuse shitty pieces of work which some people probably already agree with. But I agree with a lot(not all) of what he says in the bolded section.
Now, I am interested in Discordianism. I found the Principia Discrodia immensely funny, I enjoyed it's Spike Milligan-esque craziness, I like some of the philosophy a lot, many of the memes even after 60, I love Eris as a deity/character/principle/whatever.
What I don't entirely like is the "laid back" attitude people have online these days. It's also the Irish attitude, in general, which bothers me.
Now, why would you be interested in Discordianism if you take things seriously, you whiny little shit??? You may be asking.
Now back in the 60s, Discordianism was pretty edgy. For some reason I feel like mentioning Spike Milligan again, my Dad sort of knew him you know. Everything back then was conservative, a bit fake and shallow, too serious, and anything disruptive was a thing of beauty.
The problem with the modern attitude is systematic silliness
. People are laid back, silly, because they believe it's the right thing to do. This is the wrong attitude entirely - either you naturally are or become silly and laid back, or you're not at all. There's no one way for anyone to be, but I don't like apathy.
It's kind of the opposite attitude to what I take. Basically people nowadays are very serious about being "silly". Look at a lot of 4chan/ED related humour - can you imagine anyone laughing about that? It's pedantic, it's insistant. It's ritualistic. Now, I take being silly seriously in a very different way. Personally, I believe a world where you can be more laid back, silly, entertaining, is something to work towards. The problem is too many people nowadays seem to think merely acting like everything is okay - it's the attitude people take towards things like racism, homophobia all too often. Just act like everything's equal, and it'll work out okay.
When you take everything in it's stride, taking things in it's stride starts to loose meaning. It is no longer a reaction, but a lack thereof.
Now taking like, your career, certain social values seriously, is more the problem here. People still do that, and I believe this is a bigger drive behind the original thinking of the Silliness movement of the 50s and 60s. Ireland, where I live by the way, is VERY guilty of that. We have this bullshit laid back sense of humour, that basically means when any serious topic of discussion comes up, it gets spammed to crap(yes, even in real life) with inane unfunny comments that everyone acts like are the most hilarious things ever. But when it comes to their careers and again certain social values, they take it very seriously. This is just so topsy turvy for me.
The idea of whining
is a bit aspect of this, and quite frankly, it's what's ruined any hope of decent discussion on most forums. Quite simply put there is nothing logically invalid about "whining", and someone who whines about something doesn't have to take EVERYTHING in life super serious. Without whining, a complaint is never registered, thus when there is a problem, it never gets recognised, never gets corrected. Negative opinions are automatically slammed for being negative(another thing the guy I quoted comments on elsewhere). So in otherwords, if these people who don't take anything too seriously, supposedly, create a very orderly and forceful system, nobody can register a complaint.
It seems to me if anything a lot of Discordianism was anti-conservative more than anything, which makes the more conservative nature of some of the members here nonsensical, although that's more the anti-intellectual "tough guy" neo-conservative than the 50s conservative attitude.
I really like the way that quote points out that most comedians take their humour seriously, and it's true. The difference with internet humour is that people take the humour seriously without realising it, trying not to take it seriously, and thus it just ends up being a poor effort. They don't take the "creation" of the humour seriously like a comedian, but it's supposed necessity instead.
Can you imagine if a comedian had a "Laid back" approach to his jokes, but absolutely believed he needed he had to be in every gig he could get? It would become obnoxious. Against, systematic silliness, it's just forced humour which isn't very random at all. Real humour is a more chaotic and confusing art, it's not "forced" in terms of you're doing it for the sake of it, but you still can't just shit it out, once you do that that spontaneous urge, very often you have to lovingly craft it. Of course this isn't true for everyone, but "In general."
This has left me divided on where I stand philosophically and how I define myself. I am a naturally disruptive person, if there is some kind of system, I will often automatically shape myself into something that somehow just plain doesn't fit in, even if it means using my own natural weaknesses. When I see something too systematic, too contrived, I want to break it down. But at the same time, there are some things I have to take seriously. If you don't take anything seriously, sooner or later you find the world becomes very serious indeed - because then it's the bad dudes who get things done, and not you.
This is my own personal "revision" of some of the Discordian ideas, or more specifically the idea of Eris - the idea of Strife in of itself, that some things simply have to be fucking well fought out before you get anywhere. I like silliness, I like random humour and not taking any aspects of life too seriously, but that's a world you have to fight for and protect, and that fighting is in of itself important, if EVERYTHING is silly, that silliness has no meaning. Moreover, the people who automatically tear down posts such as this one for being "serious" are taking things seriously too - as they're ritualistically. This attitude just gets fucking annoying, for example on online games like Team Fortress where all the skilled player team up for lol Steamrollan, and keep doing it over and over long past any actual funny trolling would be relevant, and if you dare point out how stupid it is, you're told to shut up whining and take it easily. But they're the ones who insist, ritualistically, on teaming up, and pull the same crap over and over, and won't budge in the slightest. Just because it resembles something humorous, does not make it so. It is another false system that needs to be disrupted.
There are still bits of Discordianism I'll never quite agree with on the basis I mentioned though. A lot of Discordians are anarchists and Libertarians, and while I'm aware Libertarians were a lot more sensible in "those days", again, I believe it's far too idealistic, and that it's something to work towards rather than to presume. Simply put I do not believe it is the government, in many cultures, that does most of the oppressing. People are far too good at oppressing themselves. A lot of people seem to oppose anything short of rape theft and murder being illegal or frowned upon, it's too straight forward, and fails to realise how other people's rights can affect others people's rights. The same problem I have with a lot of the issues earlier - it's overly simplistic, straight forward thinking(which tends to be what most conservatives engage in). It doesn't explore how things affect each other, and the reasoning behind people's actions. It's why some people detest the idea of psychology, and indeed ailments like autism and aspergers, they don't like to accept that there's a more complex level of cause and effect to study here. Very often it's just flat out fucking stupidity that's put up on a pedastal and celebrated because it makes you tuff for sticking to old fashioned, clearly defined principles.
If you simply act like a hard ass prick and any attempt to understand how humans actually work outside of the more serious mental illnesses, you can make for that to become a reality. This is, again, taking something far too seriously, even though some people seem to consider it an "anything goes", more chaotic attitude.
Some people simply KNOW they're illogical, but take great pleasure in simplifying things. The modern ideal of a "laid back" attitude is evident of this school of thought. If you don't take any serious issues seriously, you don't have to understand them either.
I'm not saying EVERY Discordian has this attitude, my attitudes are shaped by this forum which is going to be pretty different to most discordians given the fact that it's an organised structure anyway, but a lot do, and I think the wider sphere of influence of Discordianism may be related to this. I wasn't sure where else to post my opinions on this, so you get to put up with my crappy opinions one more time. Basically being "laid back" is too often an excuse for bullshit anti-intellectualism and "ritualistic", systematic, forced humour.