Demon-Haunted History (Part 1)

There has always been this borderline between amusingly stupid, ignorant, or delusional, and dangerously paranoid or delusional. All of us are stupid or ignorant or delusional to a degree, and while it may be comic in many cases, it can evolve into a cause soon to get out of hand. Outstanding historical examples are, without a doubt, crusades, the witch-hunt, and German fascism. Interestingly, the second is most often construed as a part of medieval culture and life, yet it actually culminated in the modern era and continued well past the Age of Enlightenment. And just as popes had repeatedly drawn on the power of mass delusion and the urge of the majority of people for a common cause and a scapegoat to blame for all social and economical issues alike, fascism found the most furtile grounds in Germany for the exact same reasons. The difference between Italy and Germany consisted mostly (albeit not only, of course) in weak and strong leadership, as well as economical power. Again, it would mean to oversimplify the situation to say that it only took one man. It goes without saying that Adolf Hitler was not alone, he was not the sole cause of the catastrophe to come. And he could not have succeeded without help or, even more importantly, without the conceptual seeds sown decades, even centuries before. A single cause to unite us all, one leader, one nation, one enemy, one goal: those are the words that have always led into the abyss. They promise both glory and safety – they bring but doom and despair.
In the Western countries, crusades, the witch-hunt (as a historical event), and fasciscm faded away into the obscurity of an awkwardly remembered past that appears to be less and less relevant to the current age. In fact, however, these events keep returning and repeating themselves in different shapes and shades. The fantasy of world domination, of a single ruler, of a single nation to rule them all, has been kept close to mother’s teats and nourished well. And when it grows larger, it will find futile ground again. Gullible masses cheering for it to come down on them, eagerly sucking up the poison raining from its open veins. And as it burns inside of them, eating them up till they are but shadows, it marches them on again to their shallow, nameless graves. And those who survive the madness will use these graves as a foundation for their next futile attempt of building a flourishing society upon the denial of the horrors they caused, supported, or tolerated.


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