Bloody Rule and a Cannibal Order! Part II: The Anarchist
This essay is a response to Jason Lee Byas’ series of essays: “Against Moral Cannibalism,” “Anarchy is Moral Order,” “The Authority of Yourself.” There is something else happening in Byas’ account of our own self-enslavement that I find interesting. It’s not just that Byas’ portrayal of anarchism is meant to be retroactively binding, emerging from…
Bloody Rule and a Cannibal Order! Part I: The Egoist
This essay is a response to Jason Lee Byas’ series of essays: “Against Moral Cannibalism,” “Anarchy is Moral Order,” “The Authority of Yourself.” Many problems rear their heads when attempting to establish moral systems. Determining proper criteria, defining rights and wrongs, or establishing a certain degree of objectivity are just some of the rocky surfs…
The Ego and His Cross
This essay is a response to Professor Alexander W. Craig’s “Christianity and Egoism.”  Craig’s essay makes the argument that egoism and Christianity are compatible: He examines some seemingly anti-egoistic messages from the Gospels, contrasts them with the context of divine love as a profoundly egoistic belief, and finally argues that these views taken within the…
Refining the “Amoralist’s Challenge”
Some Opening Thoughts First, I want to express my constant admiration for how comprehensible yet deeply frustrating I find Jason Lee Byas’ approach to anarchism (something I extend to the Center’s resident radical liberals and adherents to Aristotelianism more generally, more words on that to come). To mirror his repeated praise of the “amoralist’s challenge,”…
The Anarchist and the Egoist in Love
How can the anarchist’s commitment to the wellbeing of all be reconciled with the egoist’s commitment to the wellbeing of oneself? I suggest reconciliation comes not from politics, nor from religion, nor from markets. The anarchist and the egoist find reconciliation in Love. Love is a big term. It is no wonder the ancient Greeks…
Christianity and Egoism
I began writing this on Ash Wednesday. On this day, many Christians fast, eating only one meal, and begin a Lenten discipline, abstention from something enjoyed. Over time, various Christian traditions have recommended different Lenten practices, but all who observe Lent do so by giving something up until the Friday before Easter. Can a religion…
Transhumanism and Egoism
I’ve been called upon to give a transhumanist perspective on egoism. I think that this is a pretty simple critique so I’m going to largely spend this piece talking about why egoists should take it seriously. If you’re already convinced of the importance of thinking rigorously, please just skip my self-indulgent rant and go to…
Beyond Egocentrism, Towards Egoism
“Man is the last evil spirit or spook, the most deceptive or most intimate, the craftiest liar with honest mien, the father of lies.” – Max Stirner, 1844 (2017: 129) Beyond Egocentrism When the heliocentric model of the universe was proposed in the 16th century, it was an enormous scandal. The pope eventually condemned Galileo…
Egoism, Morality, and Anarchism Under Complexity
Jason Lee Byas has already articulated what I think is an interesting (and effective) challenge to Max Stirner’s critique of morality, as well as come to a conclusion that I very much endorse: namely, that self-interest and caring for the well-being of others need not be separate concerns. In my view, the most important contribution…
Emma Goldman and Individualist Anarchism
Emma Goldman is someone who is frequently associated with anarchism as a historical phenomenon. Her mix of anti-state activism, radical support for feminism and free love movements in the early 20th century, and her radiant life of praxis for the sake of anarchy echo in our understandings of what it means to be an anarchist…
Insurrection or Revolution?
Insurrection or Revolution? The ethical politics of Stirner’s egoism At a time when the grand narrative of Revolution that we inherited from modernity and the rationalist discourses of the Enlightenment has all but broken down, what alternatives are there for conceptualising radical transformation? Despite the lack of an organised revolutionary class or movement, the left…
A Dialectical Rand for an Egoist Anarchism
I wanted to thank Cory Massimino for inviting me to submit a few thoughts on the topic of this important C4SS MES exploring the interrelationships between anarchism and egoism. Given the broad areas highlighted for conversation, I’d like to focus briefly on these two topics: What does egoism have to say about intersectional approaches in…
The Authority of Yourself
What I’ve said so far presents a dilemma for how anarchists should approach morality. If my first post is correct, we can’t ignore Stirner’s challenge. A morality that refuses to answer the amoralist requires systemic self-sacrifice with nothing in exchange. Such moral cannibalism would differ from other forms of domination only in its pervasiveness. Yet…
Anarchy is Moral Order
Anarchy Is Moral Order As I argued in my previous post, anyone who cares about morality needs a good answer to the amoralist challenge posed by someone like Stirner. As I also said there, this is especially true for those moralists who are also anarchists, since a morality without such an answer begins to look…
Against Moral Cannibalism
As Stirner means the term, I am not an egoist. I see morality as crucial, both to anarchism and to life in general. However, I think Stirnerite, amoralist egoism gets something very right about morality that most people get very wrong. In the next couple of posts, I’ll be saying more about why I reject…
The Eco- and Our Home
The prefix “eco-“, as in ecology and economy, is rooted in the ancient Greek “οἶκος”, translated as “house,” “home,” “shelter,” or “habitation.” Our home, (the home that we all currently share in common: our planet and its biosphere), is the focus of this essay — even as the title is an irreverent and playful response…
The Social Ecology of Egoism
The philosophy of Max Stirner (1806-1856 C.E.), or Egoism as it is sometimes crudely called, essentially addresses the relationship between the individual and alienation; to use Stirner’s language, the alienation between the individual and their property. Property can be interpreted in different ways, such as the common understanding of it as something owned, but also…
Communities of Egoists
Anarchism and egoism have long shared a tension that follows all anarchist groups: how do we organize in a way that respects individual autonomy while providing the benefits of collective organization? The work of organizing is often the constant answering of this question: how much does this organization benefit me, and why should I provide…
Stirner, Wittgenstein, and Anarchism
The work of Max Stirner is a contentious topic among anarchists, with numerous interpretations of his work, ranging from descriptive, presenting a certain framework of thought, to prescriptive, advocating for anti-authoritarianism, and expressing a commitment to “individualism.” It is my position that egoism is primarily descriptive in nature. The key distinctions Stirner makes, those between…
My Union Based on Nothing
  “My affair is neither the divine nor the human; it is not the good, the true, the just, the free, etc., but only my own, and it is not general, but is unique, as I am unique. For me, there is nothing greater than me!” – Max Stirner The worst thing I could do…
Anarchy and Democracy
Fighting Fascism
Markets Not Capitalism
The Anatomy of Escape
Organization Theory