Why Today's Pagans Die Badly. Why You'll Die Badly.

When I was young I thought that Bob Dylan's line "the answer is blowin' in the wind" was more active a line than the poet actually intended. That is to say, I didn't think Dylan was saying that the answer was somewhere out there for us to find. I thought he was saying that the only appropriate response to the despair of life was to make your own little wind in the face of the vasty wind of life and the universe. Sort of a war against the waves scenario.

The difference is between knowing the answer and finding it to be desperate, or not knowing the answer and trying not to despair.

Dylan seems to have found the answer. But most people who hear that song, and understand the words better than nine-year-old me, will take the wussy way out. They'll take "the answer is blowin' in the wind" to mean "there is no answer".

Which leads me to this picture. I found it on the internet, I know not how. And oh, man. I don't know whose it is, but I'm going to take exception to it. At first I read it as "The meaning of life is to give life meaning." Which was bad enough. But no, no, dear reader, it says "a meaning". "To give life a meaning."

The meaning of life is to give life a meaning. At its very best it might have a rage against the machine feel. The universe will certainly defeat you, so resign yourself to that, but fight on anyway.

Alas for all our pagan friends, that this wussy age will not allow the stoic ethos to endure long. Which is why Harvard boys Rage Against the Machine were so whiny throughout their careers.

One cannot be stoic unless one has some sort of meaning with universal claims for humanity. The stoic was full of oughts. He knew he was born mortal, and he knew all men ought to face that problem manfully. That is, according to a universal standard to which men were to be held.

That would be one way to go out: that of the pagan philosopher and warrior. The Greek and the Northman would have felt equally at home with giving life meaning. It might all disappear, there might be no more of me or my people by the time this is all done, but we have found real truth.

But this generation is given no real truth.

Perhaps a poetic approach to the problem would work.

Had I not known that I was dead already 
I would have mourned my loss of life. 


Both the victor and the vanquished are 
but drops of dew, but bolts of lightning - 
thus should we view the world.

O sweet samurai death poems, how I love you. Here the emphasis is not truth, which is so unknowable. Instead, the samurai looks at beauty to give his life meaning, and he knows that beauty is a real thing, seen in many different ways, but fixed and real.

What does today's young wuss have to hold on to? Not meaning. A meaning. Perhaps.

He has no truth. He has no beauty. Perhaps most importantly, he has no goodness.



Plato formulated that trinity. Truth, beauty, goodness. But let's be real, those boys didn't have much balance. The Greeks might have loved the idea of truth, beauty, and goodness, but the search for "truth" over the other two necessarily warped them. Beauty was pederasty and poet-killing. Goodness was virility and virtuousness.

Nor did the East have much balance. Truth was that which was most beautiful, would make the most virtuous poem. Goodness was that which would do the least harm.

We could argue about how much real truth and beauty West and East uncovered, but their lack of goodness is most remarkable, and is only made remarkable by the advent of Christ's kingdom.


Since the Fall, men have devised ways to die well. In a way, it's admirable.

East and West would have laughed at a statement like "the meaning of life is to give life a meaning". The meaning of life is to be true, or to be beautiful. The meaning of life is discoverable and universal.

The meaning of life cannot be different for each of us. But that is what our degenerate nations have been taught. Different meanings for life inevitable lead to a universal anyway, whether we want it to or not. That universal is: the meaning of life is to avoid death as long as possible.

Which is why we have a wussy generation. It is why we die so very badly.

Oh for the days when pagans were accountable, and were men. (Wussy pagan, don't come to me with tales of vikings. I come back at you with stories of Communists.)

When we have time, we will sit over coffee and beer and speak of Christ. Through him there is Truth, and Beauty, and Goodness. The meaning of life is to die now, so that there may be life more abundant. Meanwhile, meditate on your wussiness. Ask yourself what the meaning of life is. If it's a meaning, you have it already. Die lazy, and in bed. But if life has meaning, find out what that is. And like I said, we'll talk.