Re: The persecution of singular creative genius

In The Great Poets And Their Theology, Augustus Hopkins Strong spends more than 9,000 words arguing in favor of Homeric Unity, the idea that the works attributed to Homer were conceived by a single man. The critics of this idea are many and tireless in their insistence that such an accomplishment is impossible, much as atheists are tireless in their insistence that miracles must be fabricated because they violate the precepts of atheism. In my personal life, I’ve seen this pattern again and again: the less creative a person is, the more they insist creative accomplishment must be credited equitably. They represent the progress of ideas as a process of incremental improvements by nameless corporate drones, each of whom more equal in creative genius than the last.

In contrast, I don’t have any trouble acknowledging that a guy like Kentaro Miura is two orders of magnitude more creative than I have the potential to ever become. To my mind, the traits combining to produce the creative personality are on a Pareto curve and accomplishment in any domain is on a Pareto curve, so if you multiply along the x-axis element-wise you’re going to end up with some pretty interesting people on the right end of the curve. From a purely logical perspective, we can borrow the idea of irreducibly complex systems from Michael Behe, and if you read Strong’s defense of Homeric Unity you’ll find this to be the substance of his argument. From the perspective of instinct and human culture we have Jungian archetypes of genius and wizards and shamans and even divine revelation, all of which the incrementalists will exploit as tropes in their journalistic puff pieces about why fintech billionaires are harmless altruistic indigo children who deserve their riches because they have such beautiful souls.

“As a child I was always fascinated by electronics,” Jewy Jewstein told me as he doodled differential equations on his whiteboard. “One day I had the epiphany that everyone can get along if we can teach them the wonder of science.”

But I digress. Why this interminable egalitarianism, and why does it feel like it’s rooted in hubris when it should feel like it’s rooted in envy? Surely the greater feeling of hubris should emanate from self-promoting megalomaniacs who describe themselves as world historical geniuses, and yet whenever I listen to an incrementalist minimize Newton or Beethoven what I hear is “I could have done that.” You see it among every manner of midwit, technocrat, bureaucrat, and project manager, right or left, extremist or milquetoast, and I even see it in Neo-Nazi dogma (with the singular exception of Hitler, and only because he’s a transcendent figure). They’re like “Hey, Milton had some opinions, I have opinions too, we’re basically the same.”

No, you aren’t. It’s a lack of basic, fundamental decency to think your visceral reactions to The Walking Dead are on an even playing field with the great men of history. “Some parts were good, some parts weren’t, it be like that, you know? I’m glad I watched it but I wanna watch something different now.” Just shut up. Go to church and sit in the back where no one can see you.

Consider, for a moment, what demands the opposite hypothesis makes upon our credulity. Instead of one Homer, or even of two Homers, we are to believe in many Homers, each equal to the production of a poem which may ultimately constitute a part of the “Iliad” or the “Odyssey.” Are great poets, then, so plenty in human history? The critics seem to think them thick as blackberries in August. But even the Elizabethan age has but one Shakespeare; we may count ourselves well off if one such star of poesy rises in each five hundred years. Granting that a whole galaxy of poets rose at once, is it probable that they would all choose for their theme the war of Troy, the last year of that war, Achilles among all the chiefs, and, more narrowly still, the one incident of Achilles’ wrath? Would they all, with one accord, ignore the story of Troy’s fall, and passing over the fates of all the other heroes, devote their genius to depicting only the wanderings and the let urn of Ulysses?

Or, if this is credible, can we believe that out of these independent lays a consistent whole could be constructed, with parts so nicely balanced, and with such unity of effect as to make it a paragon of art? As well believe that the Parthenon is the work of a multitude of successive builders, each beginning where the last left off, but without architect or plan: the rambling incongruities and incompleteness of some English cathedrals show the results of such a method. Or is the genius of the poems the genius of the patient bookmaker—some critical and selecting and combining Peisistratus, or servant of Peisistratus, five hundred years after the original composition of the separate lays? Then we have a double problem to deal with: first, why such genius should have occupied itself with work so mechanical and inglorious; and secondly, why the composer of the nucleus should not have been equally competent at the first to organize his material into the finished poem. Whatever proves such genius in the separate parts, proves ability to construct the whole; whatever proves genius in the compiler proves that compiling would never satisfy his poetical ambition.

About Aeoli Pera

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5 Responses to Re: The persecution of singular creative genius

  1. Sturm Bringer says:

    May spring from(in part) I am Chosen, elect, what have you. I could do better than a cattle, damnedsoul, what not.

    Fellas pretty good in their respective fields(from what little I know) in the NatSoc camp: Darre(argiculture/ political economics), Goebbels(propaganda), Todt(Organization), Wever(military aviation theory?) and Hoth?(military). As some off the top of my head.

    • Aeoli Pera says:

      I don’t want to discourage you from future attempts to come up with examples, but these men are all public administrators.

      • Aeoli Pera says:

        It suggests that you don’t have a mental concept for the terms I’m using.

        I’ll help you out: Wagner is generally considered a Nazi creative genius. I would criticize the Nazi conception of genius here using him as an example, but it wouldn’t be profitable because consistency of thought isn’t a Nazi value.

  2. bicebicebice says:

    “why does it feel like it’s rooted in hubris when it should feel like it’s rooted in envy”

    this is why the sapient normie subscribes to the jewish world view, they all get an acknowledgement in the credits section after the movie rolls but watching it all unfold they get real time pickpocketed in the proverbial cinema but itz literally.

    this is the price of admission in the multi-tribalist village that raises your child because the village rapists deemed it so. We live in a society.

    I will admit to not being able to manufacture an eletric computer devil-machine, the average person will sell his soul in order to be able to say with a straight face” – yeah, I could have invented the computer you know, had I just studied a bit harder in high school”, and then everyone around concurs with humming heeming hawing and nodding, because they too, you know, could have done the same thing.

    “why does it feel like it’s rooted in hubris when it should feel like it’s rooted in envy”
    black people built ancient egypt, low IQ = hubris,

    midwit IQ = envy? aka white atheist middle class and second generation immigrants

    Imagine an entire race of super geniuses! they probably went extinct the lot of them ..( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) thats what being actually smart gets you, not so smart to be smart after all.

    rip neanderthard

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