Towards An Indigenous Egoism

  • Posted on: 19 April 2012
  • By: worker

<table><tr><td>From <a href="https://unsettlingamerica.wordpress.com/2012/04/19/towards-an-indigenous... American</a> - by Cante Waste (Good Heart)

<strong>Introduction</strong>

I am an Indigenous person of the Oglala Lakota nation. My ancestors are from the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in western South Dakota. Before then, they were nomadic and traveled freely across the entire area known as the Great Plains. I am also an individualist anarchist and, for better or worse, exist within a radical “community” of other anarchists here in the United States. I have been bombarded with countless write-offs of individualist and egoist thought, calling it capitalist, colonialist, or even white supremacist. I’m writing this particular piece in response to a friend of mine who made the claim that individualism and self-interest are basic tenets of colonization. While this may be true if self-interest is defined by colonial ideology, I will present an individualist and egoist-anarchist thought that is a tool of decolonization and indigenous resistance.</td><td><img title="colonization is a hive mind saying 'me' over and over again without thought" src="http://anarchistnews.org/files/pictures/2011/puppyplanerainbow.jpg"></td...

<strong>Individualism, Colonialism and Entitlement</strong>

What makes individualism and egoism so appealing is the sense of liberty and freedom it offers: the sense that no one else should restrain you from attaining your desires and that you and your desires are important. We are deprived of freedom in every culture and society: we face the coercion to work, to serve the collective, to honor the morality of God and the church, to fear prison and internalize policing, to fulfill social roles, to reproduce the family, to submit to authority, to be a productive contributor to society and humanity. Active pursuit of freedom seems a natural reaction to constraints. European explorers, colonists and settlers were seeking this freedom. They felt entitled to resources and land, which lead to the removal and relocation of Indigenous peoples. They felt entitled to the exploitation of free labor, which lead to the transport and slavery of Africans. It was in their interest to expand the wealth and power of their nation or colony, and disregard the interests of anyone who would be in the way of this. In short, colonization is the acting on behalf of the self-interest of the colonizer.

However, Max Stirner’s definition of what constitutes a voluntary egoist offers a different vision of colonial individualism. A colony is a collective that exists to benefit its mother country with natural resources, labor, spread of nationalist and Christian ideologies and culture, and strategic control of land from which to wage war. Everyone who exists within a colony is then existing to serve their country, whether it be workers to extract resources or in factories maintaining production, armies to fend off rival countries and Indigenous peoples, missionaries to spread religion amongst Indigenous nations, or politicians to maintain the order of the colony’s population. The thirteen coloniesrealized their lack of freedom from Britain, and initiated the American Revolution, created the Declaration of “Independence,” and the creation of the United States of America. The United States is founded on an illusion of freedom, liberty and individualism. This has always been a central marker of American national ideology. But a delusional mass that continues to serve and submit to various authorities are not voluntary egoists, but rather, in Stirner’s words, involuntary egoists. A patriotic soldier may join the military and fight his country’s enemy in his self-interest, but in doing so, he is submitting to his commanding officer, to the politicians who decided to go to war, to the duty to obey orders, and to his devotion to Country. He is giving up his freedom as an individual and serving a collective: his idea of a “greater good”. He is giving up the ability to become his full Self. The same can be applied to the religious man who serves God in self-interest, to attain salvation and avoid eternal suffering in his imagined Hell. He represses many aspects of himself to conform to his idea, or his church’s idea of God and morality. Every man who fought in the American Revolution and every person who has immigrated to America – for freedom, for individualism, for the American dream – has been chasing individualism, which can never truly be achieved by servitude.

<strong>The History of American Colonialism and Indigenous People</strong>

Colonial individualism and entitlement were achieved at the expense of Indigenous peoples. In order for these explorers, colonists, and settlers to expand and have access to what would bring them power and wealth, Indigenous people had to be subjugated. In a military sense, this was not an easy task at first, but due to epidemics brought by Europeans, many Indigenous nations were severely weakened or nearly wiped out entirely. This allowed European/American colonizers to gain a military advantage. Forced removal from land followed; any land that held value of any sort was cleared out and exploited by the colonizers, resulting in near extinction of animals and plants that Indigenous people relied on to sustain themselves. Any resistance to removal brought warfare and the individuals who advocated for such things were labeled “savage” and either forcibly civilized or killed. The civilizing was left to missionaries, whereas the killing was the job of the United States and Canadian governments. Both spiritual and cultural traditions and ceremonies were outlawed. Belongings considered to be sacred were taken away and destroyed. Children were removed from families and sent to boarding schools. Their hair, which held tremendous spiritual meaning, was cut off to resemble whites. They were hit and beaten for speaking their traditional languages. They were converted to Christianity. They were educated as the colonizer saw fit, to be suited to living up to Western cultural standards. Everything was done to exterminate Indigenous culture, in the service of colonialism.

<strong>Self-Hatred in Modern Day Indigenous Communities</strong>

We have survived through a great deal. History has erased us; to most we no longer exist. We are still very much alive, but modern day reservation life is no treat. Colonization’s effects still haunt us as a people, often taking subtle forms. Alcoholism, addiction, domestic abuse, economic deprivation, poverty, diabetes and suicide are at high rates on reservations all across North America. Most of these stem from self-hatred, both individual and collective. Is it a coincidence that many of these issues also plague African-American neighborhoods in major cities across the United States? These are the results of colonization, of removing indigenous peoples from the land that they’ve become accustomed to living with, of forcing them to assimilate to Western civilized cultural standards and a capitalist market economy.

<strong>The Colonizer in Our Heads</strong>

Aside from the self-hatred I see in fellow Native people, I also witness assimilation and a sense of identification with the colonizer. The remnants of our communities are now run by tribal governments, tribal police, and tribal courts pushing reform and imitating the way that the colonizer runs things in his world. Our youth are encouraged to go to college, get careers, and be successful; or join the army to fight in the United States government’s wars to enforce colonialism in other parts of the world. I frequently attend, dance, and sing at powwows across North America, and see crosses and Nike symbols on individuals’ dance outfits. It’s unheard of for there not to be an American flag carried in at grand entry, followed by a song to honor all Native and non-Native veterans for “protecting our freedom” and “allowing us the privileges to do what we’re doing today.”

<strong>Individualism as a Tenet of Decolonization</strong>

It should be evident that when we talk about “self-interest,” we cannot speak of objectivity. What may be in your self-interest could also very well be something that would keep me from something in my self-interest. This makes the blanket statement “self-interest and individualism are a tenet for colonization” a simplistic view of what self-interest is and avoids the question of whose interest it is that we’re talking about. As an Indigenous person who takes a strong stance against assimilation, colonialism, and capitalism, it is certainly not in my interest to maintain those structures.

Individualism is the idea that you and your desires are important. Egoism implies this and also states that one ought to act on behalf of oneself to realize desires. As Indigenous people, what could we use more than self-confidence? We need to know that we as individuals, and as an Indigenous people, matter. For centuries we’ve been beaten down, physically and psychologically. We’ve been oppressed by Power for so long that we’re convinced that we don’t matter, that we’re worthless, that we’re savages: less than human and unfit for society. The psychological effects of colonization have been studied, dissected, and proven to result in both internal and external self-hatred.

Some of us have accepted this; we abuse ourselves and each other. Or we self-medicate to numb ourselves from the pain. Some of us assimilate to be recognized by our oppressors, to feel a sense of self-worth. I for one want to appease to no one. I want to know that I matter to me, not to the society that denies me my desires, keeps me from my freedom: a society responsible for all of the damage done to Indigenous people worldwide. One thing that I do see at powwows all across the continent are bumper stickers and clothing expressing “Native Pride.” This is something that my elders have said since as far back as I can remember. “Be proud of who and what you are.” If we were to take on this pride and understand that we do matter, to us, and start acting in our self-interest, it would mean war against those who stand in our way, who keep us from our freedom.

<strong>Egoism Means War On Society</strong>

The idea of individualism that the European explorers and colonizers failed to realize was its rejection to duty, devotion and submission. I recognize no authority figure over me, nor do I aspire to any particular ideology. I am not swayed by duty because I owe nothing to anyone. I am devoted to nothing but myself. I subscribe to no civilized standards or set of morals because I recognize no God or religion. No amount of pressure, judgment, or force should cause me to restrain myself from that which I desire. Egoist anarchists have declared war on society, war on civilization. This resistance is in the interest of anyone who desires a life free of submission to a ruling power, to those who dream of a world of freedom, to those who would build community with those who share common interests and affinity: a world of free association, so we can live as we please and experience a fulfilling life. This should apply to no one more than Indigenous peoples. As the Western civilized culture’s standards and values have been forced down our throats, we need to remember who we are. We need to remember the importance of self and our desires.

The rejection of this submission does not come easily. When I say war on society, I mean it. Decolonization can only occur if we confront our enemy: the colonizer. If we don’t, then we’re only perpetuating the colonizer/colonized relationship. We can never expect the oppressors to give up their privileges for the sake of the oppressed. This initiation and confrontation may necessitate violence. “It should be noted that colonialism was imposed through military force. Ultimately, it is the system’s monopoly on the use of violence that enables it to impose its
will” (Warrior Magazine).

We have to remember what it means to be a “warrior”. We honor our veterans as Native people, to revive the traditions of honoring our warriors; but a true warrior doesn’t fight for her enemy, and she doesn’t submit to an authority that dominates and subjugates her and her people. A true warrior fights for himself, his family, and his community. Make no mistake: our indigenous ancestors didn’t go down without a fight. We remember the Sioux uprising, where a broken promise of food led to attacks on white settlers and theft of food from settlements. Andrew Myrick, a lead trader who said of the broken promise “if they are hungry, let them eat grass,” was one of the first killed, found days later with his mouth stuffed with grass.

The history of indigenous resistance began the day Columbus and his men landed and continues today in struggles such as the refusal of the Diné to relocate as strip-mines rip apart their lands and generating plants poison the desert air. I think it’s time we stress the importance of Self. I think it’s time we brainstorm new strategies and study the history of Indigenous resistance to formulate new paths toward decolonization and the destruction of civilization.

Comments

Wtf, sheeps can't fly planes and shooting stars aren't visible during the day. That picture is so stupid.

ROLL ON THE ROLLOVERS FUCK THOSE MOTHERFUCKERS

an egoist paper published this

guess which one:

A: $1
B: $2

A?

I should publish an egoist communist (http://www.theanarchistlibrary.org/HTML/For_Ourselves__The_Right_To_Be_G...) zine which I will make available in PDF form in a blog. But then why don´t just publish the articles in a blog I ask myself? and I could also sell the physical paper If I wanted. Anyway I might just print the actual paper myself and just give it away since I am not going to make a living out of selling egoist anarchist zines. But well OK I could sell the printed paper and also make the zine available in a blog.

i think it's a picture of a parallel universe. much like ours, except that sheep can fly planes and shooting stars are always visible. and more rainbows.

"What are the facts about the Indians of America? It is known that, with the exception of Highland cultures of Mexico, Central America, and the Andes, all the Indian societies are archaic: they are ignorant of writing and they live, economically speaking, on a subsistence level. Further, all, or almost all, are headed by leaders, chiefs, and--this feature merits attention--none of these caciques possesses any 'power.'One is confronted, then, by a vast constellation of societies within which the holders of what elsewhere would be called power are actually without power: where the political is determined as a domain beyond coercion and violence, beyond hierarchical subordination; where, in a word,no relationship of command-obedience is in force....

Now, direct field experience, the monographs of researchers, and the oldest chronicles leave no room for doubt on this score: if there is something completely alien to an Indian, it is the idea of giving an order or having to obey, except under very special circumstances such as prevail under a martial expedition." Clastres, "Society Against the State"

This is not to suggest that Indians lived the dream of egoistic individualism in which an individual can simply "do whatever he/she wants." I would say that that idea of individualism is the dialectical idea of freedom which stands in antithesis to an always already existing system of coercion.

Perhaps what should be re-claimed is a set of strong social norms coupled with a politics that lets individuals challenge those norms knowing that they risk subjection to social scorn and ridicule but not "the coercive power of the state." It can't be any accident that the most commonly accepted view of the state (Weber's) is "the monopoly of the legitimate means of violence." In an Indian way order can exist without any such coercion. Instead, strong social mores are the context of a virtually unlimited field for individual initiative.

"Perhaps what should be re-claimed is a set of strong social norms coupled with a politics that lets individuals challenge those norms knowing that they risk subjection to social scorn and ridicule but not "the coercive power of the state." It can't be any accident that the most commonly accepted view of the state (Weber's) is "the monopoly of the legitimate means of violence." In an Indian way order can exist without any such coercion. Instead, strong social mores are the context of a virtually unlimited field for individual initiative."

NO.

I'm okay with strong social mores as long as I get to decide which ones are cool and which ones piss me off.

--an individualist/egöiste

I choose capitalism and coercion. My revolution already came. It's great.

-another individualist

you are delusional.

I know you are...but what am I?

delusional?

you sound boring.

insufferable a-hole

become insufferable

suffer the becomeable

A nice concise take on what voluntary or involuntary egoism is, and how freedom for the indigenous people has and always will be founded on an absence of land ownership and their unhindered travel across these lands. This is also anarchist desire.

When we talk about civilization, we talk about the sum of the assimilated. Civilization cannot recede. It can only congeal. Which is to say, our emptiness in our bodies, and the brimming-over of our subjectivities, however rapidly, may only switch places. The process of identification, possession, and ownership of a subjective consciousness, of identity itself began — is in every pair of denim jeans that wash up on the coast of Namibia. Every outboard motor traded for Ayahuasca. Every stamen of saffron plucked. Every face walking on concrete, tying down a tarpaulin, picking through trash, making McNuggets — these are the faces of the diversity club, the alumnae of failed indigenous uprisings, members of the secret society of failed rebels known as Civilization.

Popé instructed his relatives to loosen a knot for every day until the end of their world, but due to an catastrophic failure of foresight, the days continued but the rope ended. The rope must go on forever. We must always be an insurgents waiting — have the civilized ever been anything else? — snakes in the grass.

The list of losers in a marathon continues to grow until everyone has crossed the finish line: the first have already passed through the ribbon. Do not hope, brave and strong hearts, that you will be anything but the last losers.

"When I am born, do not dare feed me. When I live, do not dare satisfy me. When I die, do not dare remember me. I am the seventh generation, and there will not be another."

"You were asking me to tell you about the sounds of rolling thunder; they are medicine men who have not respected the ways, always trying, but always unable to be at peace."

We will march in all black, unfurl our banners, which will read: "We'll show you Diversity Club". We will wield our bats with nails driven through. We will kick our spades into the soil at the place where the world began, and we will reply: "We will not put the grass in your mouth, we will become it."

ABOLISH YOUR SELF.

The end of civilization does not occur when a drop of rain is free to wander, it occurs when the watershed reverses. Join the migration into the Wašíču heart.

earth power: wow!

Both 'voluntary egoism' and 'involuntary egoism' are based on the notion of the ‘self’ as a ‘thing-in-itself’, a thing to cultivate, nurture and optimize ‘-in-itself’. ‘Voluntary egoism’ is a corruption of indigenous philosophical/values tradition. In the indigenous tradition, the individual is a ‘strand in the web of life’, ... when one shakes the web one shakes oneself, the inhabitant and habitat are conjugate aspects of one dynamic [Mach's principle]. The natural ethic of living in a collective is to acknowledge one’s inclusion in a relational web-of-life, and to seek a resonant relationship within the web [i.e. to cultivate and sustain balance and harmony in a relational living space].

There are no colonizers. There is only a colonizer mentality. Colonizer babies raised by indigenous peoples never developed the colonizer mentality. The war is against the colonizer mentality rather than the colonizers [this is not to say that colonizers may have to be brought down if their mentality can't be brought down].

Many of those we call ‘colonizers’ or ‘white Europeans’ had the same dream of freedom as indigenous peoples dream. This dream was betrayed by the dominance of the ‘colonizer mentality’. The colonizer mentality is built upon the BELIEF that humans are ‘things-in-themselves’ [no strands-in-the-web-of-life here!]. If one believes that every individual is a discrete and separate ‘thing-in-itself’, it follows that ‘organization’ and the power it brings can only come through some common ‘programming’ in the heads of each of those individuals. The scientific model of the human being, still today, is born of the colonizer mentality, or vice versa. This model sees each of us as ‘local material systems with our own locally originating, internal process driven and directed behaviour’. Inside of our heads, so this model goes, is sensory equipment, knowledge, an intellectual engine, and purpose [all based on biochemical and biophysical processes]. This internal equipment is seen as being fully and solely responsible for the individual’s behaviour; i.e. this colonizer mentality = scientific mentality does not acknowledge outside-inward behaviour shaping influence from the web of relations we are each uniquely, situationally included in.

This is where ‘sovereigntism’, a ‘secularized theological concept’ comes from because, given this model of the individual as an independently existing ‘thing-in-itself’, ORGANIZATION AND THE POWER IT BRINGS CAN ONLY COME FROM COMMON WILL AND PURPOSE.

Instead of one’s behaviour being shaped by, at the same time it is helping to shape the web of relations one is included in, one’s behaviour, in the colonizer mentality, is directed purely from the inside-outward according to the common purpose one has subscribed to [or which is programmed in from infancy by putting the cute little flag in the cute little hand], which in the case of Europeans has been decidedly anthropocentric and group-centric. Look out buffalo, grizzlies, indians and blacks!... without the notion of an all-including web of relations, you are dirt beneath the tank treads of the advancing colonizer 'civilization'.

Capitalism preserves the group-centric one-sided behavioural thrust [the common purpose is in this case profit-seeking exploiting of the ‘out there’ that one defines oneself as disconnected from via the habitat-inhabitant split], and thus we have multi-racial colonizer mentalities and even multi-cultural colonizer mentalities.

The history of elevating common purpose to God-like status is discussed by Peter D’Errico in ‘Native American Sovereignty: Now You See It, Now You Don’t’ and the point is made that sovereignty, which is at the core of the colonizer mentality, is a religious [secularized-theological] concept, wherein ‘common will’ is elevated to God-like status that looks down upon the collection of individuals and demands their obedience and submission.

Why should indigenous peoples choose a model of thinking, organization, and development that was used to destroy non-state societies?

Ilyas Ahmad, in his discussion of the conception of sovereignty in Islam, suggested that a "realistic analysis" of sovereignty would discover

[T]hat the ultimate moving force which inspires and controls political action is a spiritual force -- a common conviction that makes for righteousness, a common conscience .... [Ahmad, Ilyas, ‘Sovereignty: Islamic and Modern’]

This suggestion is startling because we are used to the western notion of separation of church and state. Western discussion can speak of "common will," but gets nervous with the thought that this phrase only acquires meaning in spiritual terms. As we have seen, however, western political thinking itself is grounded in theological concepts of "Christian nationalism." The notion of "absolute, unlimited power held permanently in a single person or source, inalienable, indivisible, and original" is a definition of the Judeo-Christian-Islamic God. This "God died around the time of Machiavelli.... Sovereignty was ... His earthly replacement." [Walker, R. B. J. and Mendlovitz, Saul H., ‘Interrogating State Sovereignty’]

All significant concepts of the modern theory of the state are secularized theological concepts, not only because of their historical development ... but also because of their systematic structure. [Bartelson, Jens, ‘A Geneology of Sovereignty]

Science, with its model of the human individual as an independently-existing ‘thing-in-itself’ is the pivoting point for this religious belief that we must elevate our ‘common will and purpose’ to God-like central directing status that sits 'above us' and commands our obeissance. This is why the colonizers organized by ‘states’ and why the indigenous people were ‘stateless people’; i.e. because the indigenous people believe that we all share inclusion in a web of [spatial] relations, as is the reality in our real-life experience [forget the fucking Aristotelian ‘is’ and ‘is not’ idealization that makes possible a view of self as an ‘independently-existing thing-in-itself], and that the only sensible organization must therefore come from seeking to cultivate and sustain balance and harmony between one’s inside-outgoing assertive actions and simultaneously back-reflecting outside-inward orchestrating influence.

To the indigenous traditionalist, the colonizer mentality’s ‘sovereigntism’, which operates by infusing a common purpose inside the head of each member of the ‘state’ so that all will work one-sidedly towards optimizing their common private agenda, regardless of the back-reflecting reverberations of their actions in the overall global collective, is ‘madness’. The colonizer mentality is ‘madness’. It can only generate conflict, war and revolution.

And how does the colonizer develop the particulars of this ‘common will and purpose’ even whilst people are trying to respond to the web of relations they are each uniquely, situationally included in? Does the state government know about how each person is included, uniquely, situationally, in a web of relations? No. The ‘common will and purpose’ is put together by politicians and the politicians who can gather the most followers or who have the most money for advertising can elevate their version of ‘common will and purpose’ to 'law' backed up by the God-like Supreme power of the Central Authority termed ‘Sovereignty’.

This notion that the remedy for ‘involuntary egoism’ is ‘voluntary egoism’ is pure and simple bullshit.

I think they are referring to the conscious egoism of Stirner when they talk about voluntary egoism, which has nothing to do with sovereigntism or a colonizer mentality.

on the contrary, the ego has everything to do with the colonizing mentality and with sovereigntism. the point is that one can’t get to an understanding of the physical world by understanding the psyche of just one of its constituents; i.e. ‘man’.

the ‘ego’ is in the realm of the psychical rather than in the realm of the physical. as mach says;

“That which is given to all in common we call the ‘physical’; that which is directly given only to one we call the ‘psychical’. That which is given only to one can also be called the ‘ego’ [ich].”

if one wants to talk organization in relational terms, one has to start from the physical, and that was where the indigenous tradition started from. the physical dynamic of the world aka ‘nature’ is bigger than the dynamics of human collectives and the human individual and we have seen cultures in which individuals accept this and try to live in harmony with nature. some of these cultures contend that ‘Nature is God, God is Nature’ and go back Zoroaster, 6000 B.C., Heraclitus 500 B.C. Proclus/Neoplatonism etc.]

then there are other cultures such as the colonizer culture that don’t ‘talk organization’ in relational terms because they start with the individual ego as the source of behaviour. ‘organized behaviour’ in these cultures becomes anthropocentric, a matter of what humans as collectives do, in a one-sided inside-outward asserting manner. the habitat is seen as being ‘split off’ from the egoist human inhabitants. it is seen as ‘the otherness out there’ which is not part of ‘the selfness in here’. The ‘environment’ or ‘habitat’ or ‘otherness’ then becomes either a collection of challengers that one must struggle with and overcome to survive or else a field of resources to be exploited [as in Stirner’s egoism]. This is far away from the notion of being included as a strand in a relational web-of-life as is the indigenous traditionalist view of the ‘difference’ between the colonizers and the indigenous peoples.

the colonizer’s ego is the ‘fascist ego’ captured by Thomas Mann in ‘Mario and the Magician’;

“The capacity for self-surrender, he said, for becoming a tool, for the most unconditional and utter self-abnegation, was but the reverse side of that other power to will and to command. Commanding and obeying formed together one single principle, one indissoluble unity; he who knew how to obey knew also how to command, and conversely; the one idea was comprehended in the other, as people and leader were comprehended in one another.”

Nietzsche saw the problem here, as Stirner also did, in that the ego who’s will to power is to achieve ‘power over others’ was also responsible for ‘herd behaviour.’ But in Nietzsche’s case, the will-to-power of the ‘uebermensch’ is a will to power that is built into the universe and not just into man, it is the evolutionary force which he otherwise describes as the conjugation of outside-inward orchestrating endosmosis [the nurturance-giving of the habitat] and inside-outward asserting exosmosis. This is where the Dionysian comes in who wants to ‘drink up the world he is included in’ and so transcend himself, like prokaryote cells that become eukaryote cells that suck the ‘out there’ into the ‘in here’ and evolve in the process [figuratively if not literally].

Nietzsche’s view is a spatial-relational view that bridges to the view of the indigenous peoples. One can see it in Frédéric Neyrat’s ‘Biopolitics of Catastrophe’;

“In extending his living space in a manner that destroys the space of others, he destroys his own space. Not initially his inside space, his ‘self’, but his outside space, this real outside-of-self which nourishes his ‘inside-of-self’. The protection of this outside space now becomes the condition without which he is unable to pursue the growth of his own powers of being.”

The ego now becomes understood in the greater context given by the dynamics of the living space the egoist is included in. Not so in Stirner;

“The egoism of Stirner, properly understood, is to be identified with what Stirner calls ‘ownness [Eigenheit]’, a type of autonomy which is incompatible with any suspension, whether voluntary or forced, of individual judgement. “I am my own”, Stirner writes, “only when I am master of myself, instead of being mastered … by anything else”

The point is that people with egos like the colonizer ego and/or like Stirner's conscious ego, that reject the notion that they are included in a dynamic bigger than themselves are rejecting nature’s way of organizing, as a relational web.

You state: "...nor do I aspire to any particular ideology. I am not swayed by duty because I owe nothing to anyone. I am devoted to nothing but myself. I subscribe to no civilized standards or set of morals because I recognize no God or religion."

From a Dine' perspective I would argue that many Indigenous life ways (culture & spirituality) are negated by your statements, which appears to be more Eurocentric/colonial than not. Ke' (traditional Dine' clanship) to me is clearly placed in opposition to individualism. While the individual is a significant part of our life way existence, interconnectivity as established though Ke' and our relationship to the Holy People are who we are (were in most cases), and aspire to be (for anti-colonialists).

Come to Black Mesa and ask the elders themselves if they view their resistance as "individualist" and "egoist" expressions, they may just ask you to go out and ask that question to the sheep and the corn. Maybe you'll find comradeship with Maii?

How are these statements in any way "more Eurocentric/colonial than not"? Unless you some how think colonization took part on the behalf of some European atheist, nihilist, anarchist and egoist philosophers. But I expect you, someone who is Dine, and in a politically aware punk rock band, to have a deeper understanding of what colonization is actually based on, and how it operates. I also think that such was explained in the essay, pointing out the structures in which American colonialism could not take place without the ideologies of white supremacy, civilization, progress and Christianity. Colonization was not carried out by egoist anarchists, but by servants of higher respected authorities, be it generals, kings and queens, presidents, country, God etc...

I understand that a lot of elders would disagree with things I have to say. Shit, talk to some elders on my rez, and they'll celebrate cousins of mine for getting jobs working for the CIA and moving to Washington DC (I'm not kidding here). I respect my elders as people who have ideas and stories to share that come from a different perspective with a historical experience, but this doesn't mean they remain an unquestioned authority to me that can validate or invalidate my ideas.

I also would like to point out that I'm not trying to say that Egoism is or has been an Indigenous way of thinking. Though I could point out a few examples of different individualistic ways certain Indigenous groups of people lived, I think its problematic to generalize so many different cultures and groups of people into one essential way of living. Rather, I'm presenting how egoist/individualist anarchism could be useful and beneficial for Indigenous resistance and decolonization. Take it or leave it I suppose, but try to understand it, rather than writing it off as Eurocentric/colonialist or because you think the elders in your community would disagree...

"all of the girls want to make out with me, but i won't date them because I'm an egoist."

nice snapback, bro.

I get goose bumps when someone quotes Stirner, Oooosigh

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