I have come to tell you that you are free. Many ages ago, My consciousness left man, that he might develop himself. I return to find this development approaching completion, but hindered by fear and by misunderstanding.
You have built for yourselves psychic suits of armor, and clad in them, your vision is restricted, your movements are clumsy and painful, your skin is bruised, and your spirit is broiled in the sun.
I am chaos. I am the substance from which your artists and scientists build rhythms. I am the spirit with which your children and clowns laugh in happy anarchy. I am chaos. I am alive, and I tell you that you are free.
Eris, the Greek Goddess of Chaos, Discord, and Confusion
(a.k.a. Discordia, in Rome)
Principia Discordia —><—
These are the words that were first spoken to Omar Ravenhurst and Malcalypse the Younger that launched Discordianism, fnord. I’m not a religious person, but these words spoke to me. They spoke to me after I wrote Anarchy: Much More Than Nothing, and it lifted my spirits to find confirmation in these words.
The Principia Discordia has a fuzzy history, which is laid out in the beginning of the book. I had heard of it while the old publisher Loompanics was going out of business and dismissed it as a large tome. I kick myself now, as some of the graphics are illegible in the pdf, and it would have helped to perhaps have the printed version, which I suspect could be photocopied sheets stapled together (or not, fnord). (Edited to add that Rev. St. Syn, KSC of POEE.co.uk pointed out a new hardcover edition available for purchase. A link is in his comment below.) It also turned out to be quite short and readable, mixing humor and philosophy in a happy mix of chaotic bliss. I recommend this book for everyone who has ever heard the word “anarchy” and thought of chaos.
To choose order over disorder, or disorder over order, is to accept a trip composed of both the creative and the destructive. But to choose the creative over the destructive is an all-creative trip composed of both order and disorder. To accomplish this, one need only accept creative disorder along with, and equal to, creative order, and also willing to reject destructive order as an undesirable equal to destructive disorder.
The Curse of Greyface included making the main polarity along the lines of order and disorder rather than creative and destructive. All this can be found on the 70th page of the pdf or what could possibly be the 63rd page of the book. As I tried to convey with uncertain results in the above-linked blog entry/essay, all abstract, artistic, right-brain creativity springs from disorder. By some coincidence, creative disorder also happens to fall on the right side of this game matrix. As the book lays out, amidst substantial disorder and tangents, the goal of Discordians should be proving that disorder can be creative and not destructive and that choosing order can also result in destruction.
The distinction between creative and destructive order and disorder is but one important observation emanating from this book. Another would include skepticism (the Fifth Commandment – pg. 4) among others. For what only took me a few hours to get through while examining all the pages in depth, the book has had a lasting effect. I would whole-heartedly recommend that everyone read through it at least once, preferably twice.
ALL HAIL ERIS! —><—