The reactor goes critical

April 8, 2014 § 22 Comments

Readers may be interested in this post from The Reactivity Place, responding to my criticism of (some) Christian anti-anti-Game as nominalist.

If this means we never again have to hear from fellow Christians that

  • Game is anything and everything a man ever does that is attractive to women or helps him achieve his goals, and that
  • Christian criticism of Game is “just a dispute over definitions” and can be dismissively waved aside as mere semantics,

well, that’s something.

§ 22 Responses to The reactor goes critical

  • johnmcg says:

    I’m looking forward to the mockingly simple defnition of Game like we have seen for feminism, etc. e.g. “Game is the radical notion that men are people, too.”

  • Scott W. says:

    It’s the Harry Potter flap all over again. In the endless back-and-forth over defining it as Christian-friendly or occult, the point was missed that a pop-culture tapeworm had sunk its scolex into people’s brains and the host would fight anyone to the death who suggested the worm needed to die. I seem to recall something from C.S. Lewis’ The Great Divorce illustrating that.

  • Erik says:

    I agree with Scott, and I think that passage could use some more attention. To summarize for the benefit of those who have not read the book:

    A ghostly man is walking with something like a familiar on his shoulder. The familiar is a lizard, and its chatter drives the man off the path to Heaven. An angelic spirit approaches, and offers to silence the lizard. The ghost acquiesces; the angel says it will kill the lizard. The ghost, already terrified by the burning presence of the angel, fears that he will also be killed or maimed with the death of his familiar, and stalls for time, saying he wants to get a second opinion from his doctor or another chance to make the lizard pipe down. The angel says there is no use in stalling, there is only the decision: “May I kill it?” which the ghost finally takes. The angel crushes the familiar and flings its mangled body aside. The body of the lizard becomes a horse, and the ghostly man becomes a lively man, who mounts the horse and rides off as the world rejoices.

    The moral I took away from it, which also seems to be applicable here, is that if there are things of this world that ride us, those must be broken (in both senses of the word). Only then can those things can be put to right use and serve us, once they have been killed and remade – it is no use, in the end, to take them as they are and try to talk them into submission or remodel them gently or use them only for a few hours a day. Devices that the Enemy has perverted will not be made good that easily. Duct tape may cover cracks in a broken window, but cannot restore the window to its original state.

  • josh says:

    He’s not being a nominalist, because he really does think that this is what game *is*.

    He’s being silly. In a certain respect “game” is packaged by these gurus and part and parcel of all sociobiology, but that’s just packaging. Everybody knows that to have “game” means to be good at convincing sluts to have sex with you.

  • Zippy says:

    josh:

    He’s not being a nominalist, because he really does think that this is what game *is*.

    Then he shouldn’t be trying to dismiss criticism as nothing but a silly disagreement over definitions. An essentialist who really thinks that feminism is “the radical notion that women are people, too” would argue that point substantively, not attempt to dismiss all criticism as a “silly” argument over definitions.

    That would put him in a tricky spot though because – just as it is difficult for an honest essentialist feminist without blinders to distance himself from abortion – it is difficult for an honest essentialist Game-supporter to distance himself from male inchastity.

  • Patrick says:

    There’s a tone or persona that typifies “alpha” and it’s the same for all “alphas” whether moral or immoral. That’s really what everyone wants, not Game. The idea in Game is that you practice certain outward behaviors and eventually you will have internalized Game and be alpha. I don’t know if that actually works because a big part of Game, at least for the novices, is worrying about whether you are acting alpha or beta. But it should at least enable someone eventually to fake it more consistently.

    I think possibly a better path to “alpha” is to contemplate the Christian male/female hierarchy and try to comply with it. This should naturally increase masculinity in men (and also femininity in women). Then accept whatever responsibilities come your way in life and be serious about performing them to the best of your ability. I think these two things will build a more “alpha” core in the person and then the outward behaviors will most likely just take care of themselves since outward behaviors almost always reflect the inner reality.

  • Catholic Economist says:

    Patrick-

    Very well stated. Personally, I’m still completely flabbergasted how men who call themselves Catholics can, in the same breath, shamelessly express their desire for “social dominance”. Honestly, I’m not sure why the *desire* for social stature is viewed as some morally neutral proposition when we have an abundance of material from Sacred Tradition suggesting otherwise. Additionally, the assertion that this so-called “social dominance” can be directed toward some positive end seems to reek of vainglory to me (“Sure, many, if not most, of the practitioners of “game” are sleazy and use “game” to satiate their base desires, but don’t you understand I’m *different*”).

    Having thought a great deal about the neoreaction lately, I think I know have a better understanding of what is going on. The Christian neoreaction is basically one giant ex-post rationalization exercise. They tend to fancy themselves as social engineers who can spot some desirable quantity (money, women, social influence, etc.) and reverse engineer a morally permissible path to that end. Of course, one is never to ask whether the goal is morally positive; that is just to be assumed. This approach is of course rife with error; not only is it nebulous logic, but it also helps send men down a potentially dark path, and casts religion in the role of a tool to justify the actions of men, as opposed to a vehicle for serving God.

    Lastly, this whole back-and-forth has demonstrated to me just how sexualized modern man is. I think one of the most damaging effects of the Reformation has been the stigma placed on celibacy in our culture. One of the implicit assumptions that seems to be baked in to the use of Christianized game is that men *should be* married; thus (insert rationalization here…) use game. It seems to completely discount the possibility that perhaps God’s intention for you is to remain single and perhaps that won’t be the easiest cross to bear. Once again, from the Catholic perspective, the idea of lay celibacy is in no way an alien concept.

  • jf12 says:

    Zippy, you should know I agree with you that Game tools are specifically and inherently designed to promote fornication and adultery. Which is why I must agree that “Game is anything and everything a man ever does that is attractive to women” *Everything* that is actually attractive about a man specifically and inherently promotes ease of fornication and adultery for him.

  • sunshinemary says:

    I think possibly a better path to “alpha” is to contemplate the Christian male/female hierarchy and try to comply with it. This should naturally increase masculinity in men (and also femininity in women). Then accept whatever responsibilities come your way in life and be serious about performing them to the best of your ability. I think these two things will build a more “alpha” core in the person and then the outward behaviors will most likely just take care of themselves since outward behaviors almost always reflect the inner reality.

    The term “alpha” is problematic, I think. People mean radically different things when they use this term; most men in the manosphere use this term to mean a man who has had sex with a lot of women (or who could have sex with lots of women). For a man to marry is usually portrayed as a very “beta” thing to do. So we really can’t use manosphere terminology very well to contemplate the Christian hierarchy…because it’s not a male/female hierarchy, it’s a husband/wife hierarchy.

    But I entirely agree with you that contemplating the properly ordered marital hierarchy should increase masculinity in men and femininity in women and would mostly solve our problems without the need for advice from perverts.

  • One of the implicit assumptions that seems to be baked in to the use of Christianized game is that men *should be* married; thus (insert rationalization here…) use game.

    *Ahem*

    http://malcolmthecynic.wordpress.com/2014/03/06/marriage-whats-the-big-deal-anyway/

    Beat you to it!

    (Seriously though, you’re right.)

  • DeNihilist says:

    Zippy, wish I could follow all of this, but his screen back ground just really bothers my eyes! Maybe I will get some construction paper and block out the sides, then again, maybe not.

  • DeNihilist says:

    Patrick, depending which site I am on, either the alphalpha is the guy getting laid, or is the man whom other men would follow into battle, etc. depends on what they are selling.

    This to me is the best definition yet of the “hierarchy”.

    “The Bonecrcker is different from much of the game-o-sphere in one key way: His definitions of Alpha, Beta & Omega are entirely different from the conventional definitions we are using today. I still believe that he is closer to the underlying “Truth” with his ordering of these definitions because he goes beyond merely “scoring” and a high partner count in his definitions, for he includes social status and the ability to co-operate with other men – in order to create power – as part of his definition of “alpha.”

    Here are the definitions I learned it under, which will make sense further along in my argument.

    Alpha: The “top” male – both sexually and socially.

    Beta: Most males in the population. The average guy.

    Omega: The scum/deviant/criminal class

    Zeta: Weak-willed males

    Alpha males don’t usually get the most partners. Alpha males get the best chick around and she beats off all the other women with a stick. Alpha males are respected in society – they are not only sexually attractive, but they also have great social power and have the respect and admiration of other men. Think back to when you were in high-school. The star quarterback, while he could have shagged a lot of 6’s, 7’s and 8’s, that is not generally what he does. ”

    http://no-maam.blogspot.ca/2012/06/keynesian-sexual-marketplace.html

  • Catholic Economist says:

    Malcolm: So it really is true that great minds think alike…

    jf12: But surely intent matters, no? Consider the following example:

    Suppose their is a man by the name of Joesph. At age 18, Joesph, a devout Catholic, decides he will dedicate himself to the Lord by taking a vow of celibacy. As it turns out, Joesph is a fairly attractive guy, who eats well and exercises, works very diligently, and has an outgoing personality. Therefore, he has achieved a fair amount of professional success and is well-liked in general. As he possess several characteristics which women find desirable, Joesph has women who often flirt with him although he does not reciprocate.

    Now Joesph has a co-worker by the name of Ross. Ross sees that Joesph attracts women’s attention. Therefore, he concludes to be successful with women, he should mimic Joesph’s actions. As such he apes Joesph’s mannerisms, and lo and behold, finds that women now give him increased attention.

    It seems odd to consider both of these cases as “game”. While certainly each man has a certain level of attractiveness and thus ease of fornication (if they so chose), Joesph’s comes as an unintended by-product of his actions, whereas Ross’s is deliberate.

  • Patrick says:

    @Catholic Economist
    As far as desiring social dominance, I think there’s a lot of confused and conflicting ideas of what is good and reasonable and of how to find it. It’s possible that when someone says he wants social dominance he’s ineptly expressing a desire for a recognized place in a rational hierarchy. Or maybe it is just disordered desire. Maybe women in the manosphere are doing something similar when they talk about the magnetism of “alpha” or list it as a desirable trait, whatever it means.

    @sunshinemary

    From what I’ve seen the husband/wife hierarchy expands in a community into a sort of male/female social hierarchy. It doesn’t involve the same authority or responsibility as the husband/wife hierarchy, but it’s there.

    As far as the alpha, beta, gamma hierarchy, it seems to describe a social reality and it seems kind of useful. Men in a group always sort themselves out that way. I think the tone or persona of “alpha” can be cultivated by all men in a group regardless of the social sorting that goes on.

  • Mike T says:

    As far as desiring social dominance, I think there’s a lot of confused and conflicting ideas of what is good and reasonable and of how to find it. It’s possible that when someone says he wants social dominance he’s ineptly expressing a desire for a recognized place in a rational hierarchy.

    Or at least the ability to move up the hierarchy and/or be taken seriously within it. One common example today is the engineer who won’t be assertive and confident with management, gets mowed down and then blamed when things go wrong. I’ve seen that happen, and I’ve also been in situations where my learned confidence and assertiveness not only saved my bacon dealing with management, but saved the managers. Had I just respected the hierarchy and been meek, everyone would have suffered. Traditionally, this has been one of the strengths of our military relative to other countries; subordinates are culturally tolerated a certain level of independence and feedback that more authoritarian cultures would consider insubordination.

  • Zippy says:

    Game is not just social competence though, or else people wouldn’t even associate the word “Game” with what we are discussing.

    Game has a specific difference from social competence generally, something which makes it Game specifically as opposed to something else. I contend — after a couple years of experience discussing Game, reading about it, thinking about it, watching what people do and what narratives they adopt, etc etc, that is, after learning what Game is in much the same way we learn what anything is — that the specific difference which makes Game what it is in particular is the same as the specific difference that makes sluttiness what it is in particular: inchastity.

  • Mike T says:

    No small part of what makes this difficult is that you presuppose an almost Manichean world in which a woman is either chaste or a slut. It doesn’t seem to even register that many “chaste” women are in fact merely ignorant of how to be sluts and that there are women who know how to dress for men but aren’t slutty about it. That is to say, a woman can be neither a sexless, celibate madonna nor a slut but rather be sexy and chaste.

  • Your subjective feelings aren’t objective reality, Mike T.

  • Mike T says:

    Maybe one day you’ll graduate from anklebiting to having something intelligent to say, TUW.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:
    Chastity/inchastity is one of those moral categories where bright lines between good behavior and bad behavior don’t exist: let’s call it a “no line problem”.

    The liberal solution to the no line problem is to try to eliminate the authority of the moral distinction entirely, make unprincipled exceptions to the elimination when the inchoate voice of common sense and Everyman outrage gets too loud, and push the Hegelian Mambo until we actually have poofters pretending to “marry” each other with social and legal sanction.

    The Mohammedan solution to the no line problem is the burka. You’ve gotta love them, they are so mindless.

    The Christian solution to the no line problem is to recognize that if there is no line it makes no sense to try to approach the nonexistent line as close as possible without crossing it. But that is precisely what advocates of “Christian Game/sluttiness” are trying to do. They want the material “benefits” of inchastity in the modern world without “crossing the line” into actually unchaste behavior. The effervescently vulgar manosphere character “Great Books For Men” is exactly right on this point.

    The notion that a woman cannot look pretty without acting like a slut is a false dichotomy; a false dichotomy which is frequently employed as a way of avoiding the Christian solution to the no line problem, which is that when you aren’t trying to get as close to a nonexistent line as possible you are far less likely to accidentally cross it.

  • Mike T says:

    The notion that a woman cannot look pretty without acting like a slut is a false dichotomy; a false dichotomy which is frequently employed as a way of avoiding the Christian solution to the no line problem, which is that when you aren’t trying to get as close to a nonexistent line as possible you are far less likely to accidentally cross it.

    It sounds like we ultimately have a similar view here. The problem I have with your wordings is often that you seem to imply the view that no, a woman cannot look beautiful and even a bit sexy without walking toward the line that demarcates slutdom (in general). As you clarify here that’s not your formal view, but that’s the way it comes across.

    Being a Protestant, I’ve had the fun of seeing how different minds take textual literalism far more than I probably would voluntarily choose. There are plenty of examples of women who take Paul’s admonitions about how women should dress and turn themselves into something that, barring God granting them strong natural beauty, crushes their sex appeal to reasonable men. Such women are exercising barely any more wisdom than the woman who dresses like a slut because there is something disordered about that approach, only less disordered than being a slut.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:

    As you clarify here that’s not your formal view, but that’s the way it comes across.

    I can’t be the judge of how I come across to others, of course. But I suspect that this has as much to do with where readers are coming from as it has to do with anything I actually say. Even those readers who don’t themselves fall for the ‘burka vs Jersey Shore fallacy’ are used to all the other people around them doing so.

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