Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Govor - The Millenarianism Pack

A Croatian project which you already are familiar with, and which has a quite elaborate theoretical base behind the music, is back with a new release - which is a pack consisting of a 7 minutes-long track (a "symphonic poem"), a MIDI file, guitar tab, and a score for it, and a PDF essay on the topic of millenarianism (a term uniting all ideas about the end of the world). It's 25 pages long, and I have to admit I've read it only very superficially so far, but I definitely will look more closely into it (and his earlier essay) a bit later. The whole pack is freely available under the terms of Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.


  1. Very interesting, and a weird and inspiring thing to write a 25-page long philosophy essay for one track. For me, the text seems more to my taste than symphony.

    Some more background, since this is something I have dealt with a little bit ... 'millenarianism' is a long tradition in popular revolutionary movements with apocalyptic tendencies. This was especially the case in the Middle Ages (around the turn of the last millenium). The term comes from the idea that on the second coming of the Messiah, there will be a divine kingdom on earth for one thousand years (hence, millenarianism). The most famous historical study of these movements is a book by Norman Cohn called 'Pursuit of the Millenium'. Their essay seems pretty well-research though, with many references.

    It seems to me helpful to learn the mistakes in apocalyptic thinking (ie. waiting for a 'coming' of a Messiah, a rupture, the end of the world, a movement which could destroy civilisation etc.). Apocalypticism basically puts you in a pathetic and esoteric waiting-position. The only way out of apocalypticism is to embrace the fact that: the world already ended, and we are living among the ruins. The major block for environmental movements today is that they still think that 'the end of the world' is something that will come and has not already happened. It is mistake to think that 'endings' are sudden and aprupt - endings can last for hundreds of years. Then the question becomes, how do you live and struggle in the end of the world?

  2. Thank you Rabm for the support.

    My contribution is a more economical interpretation of millenarianism. Historicists basically say: people had a bad time so they envisioned the end of the world. Materialist conception of history is about the economy of the historical periods and geographical regions. The best example is the difference between Persia and Egypt. First had fire agriculture, second had agriculture based on Nile’s flood-waters. Persia had fire temples; Egypt’s pyramids have pointed top and no stairs. Other Asian and American pyramids were used for sacrifice, which is why they have flat top and stairs. Persia had fire-altars printed on the state coins and Egyptian mythology you can't find a pure fire-god. Egypt didn't have the destructive ends of the world. Idea of the millennium(s) is already present in the Persian mythology, sometimes it is the rule of 700 or so years, can't remember exactly. There are a lot of similar narratives in non-Christian traditions. Etc. etc. Just read the essay, it is more complicated than presented here.

    Nature, before we came, has wiped out almost all life that was on the Planet, in at least five great catastrophes. How to deal with such an inhospitable place? How to deal with death? Revolutionary work is at most importance but these questions are also inseparable from the millenarian ideas.