The Tao of National Anarchism: Unity of the Opposites

By Michael Strasser

Central to Taoism is the idea of dialectical monism, which states that while everything is one, the Tao necessarily expresses itself as a multiplicity of opposites. Without contrast, there is no observation of anything in the world around us. Without up, there is no down, and the opposite of that is also true. For there to be a front, there necessarily needs to be a back. For there to be insiders, there must also be outsiders, and this is expressed in National-Anarchism itself. It is a unity of 19th century Enlightenment ideals, expressed by Pierre-Joseph Proudhon and others, with that of radical traditionalism from millenniums past. This all seems to be illogical at first glance, which explains many people’s confusion online and on the streets. There are many enemies to National-Anarchism who think that it is simply a right wing movement in anarchist clothes. It would be helpful to see that there is no real contradiction in the synthesis of tradition and enlightenment ideals. Their realization, in fact, has to happen within the same movement. This is the process which has been in work toward this realization for many millenniums.

Seeming paradoxes make up National-Anarchism, because they are the very nature of reality itself. Globalist movements, which have an emphasis of monism, destroy the very foundation of monism. “The people united will never be defeated” is incorrect in the way in which it is used. This is the very thing which will defeat people, because sectarianism is the nature of humanity. It is only when accepting that we will be sectarian that we can work together toward any goal. Multiplicity is National-Anarchism’s true strength, because the unity of the Tao is always in multiplicity. Without something having a complimentary opposite, it cannot be said to exist in reality. Where there are no things, there is no unity of things. A unity of nihilist and moralist currents can exist within the same movement, because the two are one in the same. The Void is truly nothingness, but it is also pure potentiality, and the basis for all that exists. Nothingness doesn’t make sense without somethingness, because there is nothing more fertile than nothingness. The multiplicity of ten-thousand things is eternally proceeding from the Void.

It is another seeming contradiction in logic that the movement contains radical theists and atheists alike. It isn’t for lack of any reason that this is the case. The Tao can be described in positive and negative terms. It is all meaning and no meaning simultaneously. It is the Void and the Mother of ten-thousand things, and there is no real inherent contradiction in this. There has always been debate in the West about what form actually is. The East has the answer in the Heart Sutra by saying “That which is Void is precisely Form, and that which is Form is precisely Void.” Upon seeing that all possible negative and positive values together make up zero, it makes all the sense in the world to proclaim this. The Void is what we come to when seeing the whole picture. In the West, we have mistakenly seen the Void as producing nothing. “Out of nothing, nothing comes” is quite a common sentiment. It is more true to say that you can’t have something without nothing. It is only when thinking is fragmented that this doesn’t make sense. It is the multiplicity of atheists, theists, conservatives, hippies, revolutionaries, reactionaries, etc. The final synthesis is returning full circle to the tribe, with each grouping where it wants itself to be.

Nietzsche and Plato were right and wrong simultaneously. The realization of this sooner might have tempered both of these personalities, but it could be said that we can only have these realizations after the fact. History is revealing reality itself to us through an interesting dialecttic, as Hegel pointed out. This is the unity of Transcendence and Immanence showing itself to us. Hegel emphasized the State as the thing providing unity, but I think that history is showing us a different understanding of this principle. There was no understanding that these are archetypes proceeding forth from Tao, and instantiating themselves in each individual. This seems so obvious many of us sympathetic to National-Anarchism, because we are at the point of history in which this has been realized. Every man is a king unto himself, and the State is the unnatural negation of this fact. Emphasizing power and control with the State takes away from the numerous instances it shows itself in each family. It might be said to have been necessary for a time, but history has made this realization available to all of us at this time. It is the Tao which provides the underlying unity without need for an artificial structure like the State. Let us live in harmony in this, with our multiplicity of culture and stances on various social issues. Everyone has an innate desire to belong, but there is no possibility of belonging everywhere at all times. This admission logically brings us to having to accept multiplicity on at least one level, and hopefully our current enemies will be brought to an understanding of this. It is my sincere desire to be able to work with all currents of anarchism to bring about the goals we have in common with them.

National-Anarchism is a movement of racialists and anti-racialists, which cannot be seen anywhere else in the anarchist world. It is “solidarity” and mindless agreement which causes true division, and makes these other movements helpless against the state. They merely splinter into a million sects over disagreement. The ability to have disagreement is actually the strength of National-Anarchism. National-Anarchism is split up into a million sects from the beginning, with no effect on the ability to work with other groups with the same goal of secession. It seems odd that those who agree from the outset to be separate have more ability to work with one another than those who don’t think togetherness should be all but forced. This is another notable example of how there is a unity of opposites. The things which are separated are in fact one in the same, and there is true freedom in being separated. Variety is the spice of life, and everything being one gray blob is actually quite boring. True diversity can only exist when realizing that things necessarily exist in multiplicity. Forcing them all to be the same destroys any actual diversity. The only way to celebrate it is to realize the need for every group to have its own space.

Ironically, the progress of the Enlightenment has brought us full circle to traditional society, albeit with some further realizations now available to people at this time. In the distant past, there was freedom not available to us today, and this realization would puzzle many people. Humanity has lived the vast majority of its existence under tribal arrangements, and we seem to always divide ourselves that way when given the chance. There were problems at this time in the past, or we would not have run into the problems we have faced. Tribes fought other tribes, and a lot of looting of other territories was all too common. Perhaps this is something that can now be resisted, and we can realize a further evolution in the arrangement between existing tribes. We must all resist globalization together, by emphasizing our sameness through difference. Pan-Secession against the empire further emphasizes the unity in Tao, and this must be welcomed as the organic flow of Tao itself. Anarchism is the logical conclusion of Lao Tzu’s statements in the Tao Te Ching, which I would recommend as reading for any serious anarchist.

7 replies »

  1. My take on it is that on a three dimensional political spectrum national anarchism is politically libertarian, economically socialist, and culturally conservative.

  2. Those three descriptors describe my position pretty well, actually. This is why the majority of people can’t stand me. There are positions I have that drive them up the wall. I could be there defending a social anarchist’s positions, then it takes a turn for the worst. The topic of transgender weirdos comes up, and I’m on the Tea Bagger’s side.

  3. “This is why the majority of people can’t stand me.”

    Controversy can often work in your favor. For instance, I’ve had more people than I could count tell me over the years. “You know, you’d get farther if you dropped the ‘anarchist’ label.”

    I disagree. The term “anarchist’ gives what I do an exotic and forbidden quality that a more innocuous term like “libertarian” or “decentralist” does not. Add to the anarchist label the audience we have among white nationalists and far rightists, and we take on an even more taboo flavor. Then there’s the provocative effect that has with the ultra-left, which builds even more controversy. Then there’s the negative critique of the “LGBTQ” movement I advanced some years ago, and even more controversy is generated.

    Because of all that, ATS is probably five to ten times more “famous” than it otherwise would be. Without these controversies, we’d be just another boring libertarian site talking about the non-aggression principle for the two millionth time, or another generic left-anarchist site talking about “wimmin-POC-trans ppl-white privilege.” What a bore that would be.

    Also, the fact that the anarcho-leftoids react so hysterically to the WNs really shows how pathetic the anarcho-leftoids are. Even if the WN movement was 1000 times it present size, the most they could do is convert maybe one of the more sparsely populated of the 50 states into an ethnostate with a highly restrictive immigration policy (like Israel, Iceland, or Japan). And maybe create some clusters of rural counties as separatist enclaves. A small price to pay for the overthrown of the empire, and certainly pretty puny stuff for the anarcho-leftoids to make into flagship issue.

    • There’s room for everyone. That’s why I support National-Anarchism. It’s the only political viewpoint I know of that allows this.

  4. I think ideas like those of ATS, N-A, and John Zube’s Panarchism are the next logical step in the evolution of anarchist thought. Anarchism and libertarian movements have grown a lot in recent years, and they’ve split off into all different kinds of camps, some of which are very opposed to each other.

    That by itself is not necessarily a bad thing. Any growing movement or collection of movements should have lots of vibrant, even antagonistic debate, particularly during its embryonic phases. The more libertarianism has grown, the greater the number of libertarian sects that have appeared, and all the predictable splits and factional in-fighting has occurred.

    But at some point of all of these kinds of forces need to converge in a way that forms a new libertarian “Gray Tribe” as a kind of political meta-identity. There will need to be a few common markers that signify this identity, and the kinds of ideas we talk about here would seem to fit well with that.

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