I have an ASKfm account whereby people can, either using a name or anonymously, ask me questions which, along with my answer, are produced on my public profile for all to see. I do not get many questions, maybe a couple every day, and about half of them I ignore for various reasons. Mostly, the questions one receives on such a platform are Q&A-tier; quite innocent, but sometimes one receives stupid or malignant ones from people who should never have learned how to read. Even less occasionally, though, one receives questions which are better-off not being answered in such a format at all — and it is this type which actually irritates me the most.
Song of the day:
I do not like intellectuals, and I especially do not see myself as one. Promiscuous nerds, jumping from one author to the next, one philosophy to the next, one style to the next, treating life as if it is a costume parlour full of “interesting” garments to “try-out” or “test.” Restless, unsettled bohemians who fill their empty lives with conflicting colours to jolt them into a false sense of life. Frankenstein’s monsters who shamble about, borne of an electrified hodgepodge, who mistake their grunts and screeches for speech and song.
The internet is rife with such people. The introvert has a voice in cyberspace, of course, a little landmass here or there to shape for himself by himself — as if the case with myself and what I do, for example — but the intellectual goes further than wanting quiet. He prefers noise, instead, and makes it a mission of his to make as much noise as possible in an attempt to scramble for definition and meaning. There is little humanity to the endeavours of an intellectual, and there is little patience, either. Questions are asked simply because they can be; energy is always being exerted outwards and it never once passes through any checkpoints to temper it or double-check its necessity. It is simply assumed and pushed forth — to question this process would have the intellectual crushed under his own weight, all of a sudden having to put a stop to himself (or, rather, putting a stop to the way in which the tendrils of his self creep out and slither onto the external world).
Perhaps this tendency lacking in persons such as myself comes down to intuition vis. thinking? The interior feeling vis. external knowing? As my friend Alex tells me often enough, I have a strong sense of intuition; I tend to not bother speaking to people until I actually want something of them. This can come across as cold or detached, but it is not anything personal, rather it is because I am always — to the point of paralysis, one might say — looking inward. In recent months I have made an effort to creep out of my cave, so to speak, but it is not a natural process.¹ On the other hand, intellectuals, thinkers, tend to prod around, as if their tendrils are feeling the world around them, detecting movement to jump upon and thus devour. Extroverted intellectuals can be particularly callous, moving from person to person, using someone until their “purpose” is fulfilled, leaving behind them a trail of bloodless corpses.
I get such people asking me questions particularly on ASKfm, always anonymously; never do such people approach me personally. Why? Because they do not care for personhoods, only for their own ideology and ego-induced sense of the importance of their opinions. For example: “Do you believe in evolution?” “Why did God take the Incarnation?” “What do you think of this obscure theoretician’s obscure theory?” Etc.. The answers to such questions usually straddle the line between “I do not know.” or “I do not care.” or — further — “Why are you asking?”
There are three tiers of questions one receives through such mediums. Firstly, we have trivial, by-the-by questions such as “What is your favourite food?” which I tend not to answer. Secondly, we have more “internet-me”-specific questions such as “Do you agree with this fellow YouTuber?” or “You have spoken about this topic before, so could to extrapolate on your views?” which I tend to answer. Thirdly and lastly, we have questions which deal with broad philosophical/theological/historical “facts” which were only asked because the image-me that is being projected through the internet is treated like a repository of “interesting” information instead like a man. These I tend not to answer, but there are exceptions.
We see via the internet, for the first time in human history, the emergence of the image-man. A profoundly foul and dangerous construct. On the internet, only the projected or pseudo-ideal man, we could say, is found (for the most part, at least). My friends ask me questions all of the time, but the relational matrix within which the questioning lies transcends, in and of itself, the question, and relates to the broader relationship, itself built upon trust, love and respect. The images of men which are projected onto the internet are but a semicircular mimicry of this, in that there is no longer the two-way relationality which exists in proper connections between men, but a pseudo-one-way relationality stemming from the image only. The image effects the world around it, like a reflection which appears to act but cannot be harmed or destroyed so long as one can see it.
As someone who has some experience playing the part of the image-man, he who spurs forth from luminesce ultravioletness, I can say that one of the chief struggles is retaining one’s humanity in an increasingly artificial world (to paraphrase Evola). The single and only way in which this is achievable whilst maintaining active on the internet is to foster relationships which subsist beyond mere opinions, but rather stand upon honour — and as we know, honour, again to paraphrase Evola, is mightier than fire.
In short, I have no issues answering questions, but I would like to do so within a stronger and more ordered matrix than merely that which “gets the ol’ gears spinning,” so to speak. And this holds especially true when it comes to profoundly important topics, for what is the use of the question being answered by me specifically? Theologians have already dealt with evolution, the Incarnation, etc., so why must I? And — further — what authority do I have when compared to these men? Surely it would make sense to ask these questions to foster friendly and personal conversation instead of merely to probe and prod for your daily Cool Opinion™ from an Internet Personality©.
“Why?” should be at the forefront of one’s mind when we approach anything through the online medium; it is a fabric of trickery and boggery. It must be viewed with scepticism. It must be treated as a tool and we must be aware of how we approach it and why we approach it in the ways in which we do! Beware, all ye who clicketh and scrolleth!
1. One can also notice thus my tendency to neurotically talk about myself in a detached, strange sort of way, as if I am observing an external person’s movements. Also notice my use of the word “movements” to describe behaviour or emotions, because, to my intuition, I am “feeling” activity. This intuitive “feeling” is then processed through my external functions (if we wish to refer to Jung, which Alex has also been telling me enough about) to be given a shape which is observable and measurable (i.e. rational), hence the specific word with its visibility. The eyes are first closed (intuition), then they are opened (thinking).