From It’s Going Down
New anarchist publication Conflictual Wisdom addresses long term involvement in the anarchist movement and offers thoughts from a wide range of participants regarding burnout, trauma, and beyond.
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We have finally finished this new project Conflictual Wisdom! Please share the pdf included here far and wide. Please distribute and print on your own! Please send feed back to conflictualwisdom @ protonmail (dot) com. We include here the introduction and table of contents. Solidarity across borders and fire to the prisons!
On What We Have Here
“Want to see the face of a coward?
It’s the back of his head as he runs from the battle.”
This project was an attempt at public introspection. It was an attempt to reach out there and see what I got in response to asking questions and sharing contemplation on public forums and private discussions. I didn’t get all the answers I wanted, but the path I’ve chosen is a path of permanent struggle and conflict, and resolution isn’t something I can expect.
Living within a society you don’t approve of that coerces you into hypocrisy, or never experiencing a free society yet fighting for one through an inner desire or theoretical dream of something else, or being forced to constantly compromise and degrade ourselves in order to simply survive, not to mention simultaneously struggle; is a recipe for inevitable confusion.
However I have gotten some insightful responses, and in the process of trying to coordinate the organization of this publishing project, I have discovered many ways to challenge my disappointments for the better, or to challenge my own self-criticism for the more constructive. I have had deep conversations with people outside of these pages, and while I question if there is enough here to answer any of the questions that lie at this project’s foundation, I still pushed myself to put something together hoping to push for more dialogue on the subject of preserving our movements and individual struggles for the long term (especially in light of Trump, climate change, and so-called hopeless end times).
I honestly don’t even know if this project will help or confuse. I think it helped me, but I’m still confused. However, I accept this inevitability, and at least I have some tangible things to blame for my confusion, or to understand what prevents me and those I love from our full potentialities as revolutionaries and as free people.
I don’t know where life will take me. Maybe to the countryside in search of a happier escapist-ish autonomy. Or maybe to the countryside to feel happier with my environment, yet also stand up to the rampant rural fascism that goes un-confronted in the states. Maybe I’ll remain in the cities in search of contributing to more visibly active anarchist struggles, or to feel more aware of the world as it is.
Am I doing enough? What degree of inconvenience to my survival is ethical for me? Do I even have such power or privilege to make a choice on the matter? Is it possible to feel any happiness in a society that I know to be so awful? Will I end up in prison? Will I die young (still a bit young-ish) or old?
Contemplation is frustrating when we are all so alienated. And while we are told that anything is possible these days, the infinite possibilities with which we are presented with leave us rootless and confused, overwhelmed, desensitized, and alienated. Even amidst this so called infinite realm of technological and consumer possibility, I will always take pride in my choice to seek more openings towards a free life and society, on my own terms (even if such attempts never materialize in the absolute, this sort of pride and willful disobedience is a victory in and of itself).
Regardless, this project and its creation come at a very troubling and existentially challenging time for me, and for the world. The endless questioning can leave you feeling bleak and helpless. We are questioning our enemy so much, that we sometimes turn against ourselves, in the sense of trying to understand why it is we are so pathetic in our resistance (even if such an assumption is mathematically flawed considering the technological apparatus of oppression and repression we face).
It’s not just our own questioning and constant struggle to keep our eyes on the road. It’s dealing with the constant threat of imprisonment, judicial intimidation, and general consequences of our choice to be in permanent conflict with domination. Of our choice to essentially be anarchist revolutionaries. This can lead to panic attacks, substance abuse, and a need to take a step back in order to hold it together. This project intends to address issues such as this with the intention of understanding such a step back as a necessary tool in self-preservation, but never grounds for betraying our movement, communities, or integrity.
This project culminates not necessarily with conclusions but with a hope of provoking or humbly guiding those sharing these struggle.
I present this to the world with all its efforts, and finish it firmly establishing that I still know I am on the right side of history. This is a victory for me, and something to get out of bed for in the morning. I feel nothing will break this commitment of my mind and heart.
I send love to those I love. I send hate to those I hate.
For an existence defined by passion, depth, desire, and struggle, for a community that is borderless and there for each other, let’s heal each other’s wounds and prevent each other from burning out, or at least keep a consistent dialogue on the subject in order to better shape our communities to be stronger against the will of our enemies. In whatever way we do this, we must get creative and challenge our hyperbolic traditions by making time for humble realities and discussions. We have to do this before it’s too late and we lose one another to the cancerous inflictions of social alienation.
The name of this project is indeed corny. Yet wisdom is defined as having intelligence or insight based on experience, and conflict is something that defines anarchists. Anarchist struggle is a relentless unforgiving permanent conflict with all facets of domination. Therefore the intention here is to provide voices of experience in the pursuit of remaining in permanent conflict. Hence, such wisdom can lie at the foundation of our battles, and in this case, the preservation of our movement.
-Anonymous / 2018
Before Opening Please Note This Project Is or Was:
*Strongly Encourages Independent Distribution
*For Entertainment Purposes Only (ACAB)
*A Not for Profit Publication
*Slowly Put-Together 2016-2018
Dedicated to those in prison or who have lost their lives resisting the world imposed upon us.
Dedicated to those who choose integrity over inconvenience (stop snitching!).
To those who choose the hard route.
To the excluded, unsponsored, and unwelcome.
To the stressed, confused, and struggling.
To the sincere, passionate, and unforgiving.
Made with love and rage.
Table Of Contents
On What We have Here
Preface 2016 / Pg. 6
To My Comrades / 2016 / Pg. 6
A Second Try / 2017 / Pg. 9
Responses & Related
Hello, My Dear Comrade / Pg. 11
Light & Love to You Comrade / Pg. 12
Because My Love May Be Dormant,
But It Ain’t Dead / Pg. 12
Ok Well, Enough of the Ramble / Pg. 13
Some Notes On Not Giving Up / Pg. 14
Some Thoughts from An American Comrade / Pg. 18
Let’s Make it Count / Pg.19
Understanding Lines in the Sand / Pg. 20
In a Cyclical Narrative,
The Question is Not whether You Will Win / Pg. 23
Changes: An Organizer Reflects / Pg. 25
For A Community that Can Overcome Trauma,
& Defeat Repression / Pg. 27
Instructions for An Insurrection / Pg. 32
Never Stop Searching (A Poem) / Pg. 34
With Support Of: