Moby’s Postmodernism

Fundamentalism (of any kind) troubles me. The world is too big and too intricate to conform to our ideas of what it should be like. In my experience I’ve found that most fundamentalists aren’t so much attached to their professed ideologies as they are to the way in which these ideologies try to make sense of a confusing world. But the world is confusing, and just because we invent myths and theories to explain away the chaos we’re still going to live in a world that’s older and more complicated than we’ll ever understand. So many religious and political and scientific and social systems fail in that they try to impose a rigid structure onto what is an inherently ambiguous world. I’m not suggesting that we stop trying to understand things. Trying to understand the world can be fun and, at times, helpful. But if we base our belief systems on the humble assumption that the complexities of the world are ontologically beyond our understanding, then maybe our belief systems will make more sense and end up causing less suffering.

Moby’s essay from his CD “Play”

Where to begin: 1. ‘fundamentalism’ is so ambiguously used by seemingly everyone nowadays as to mean almost nothing except ‘people I disagree with’. 2. He doesn’t like others having definite views (‘ideas of what the world should be like’) , but, like all postmoderns, makes a notable exception – himself. 3. ‘The world is too complicated to understand’ – he understands that much of course! 4. All beliefs are ‘myths’ and attempts to make sense of a confusing world – only agnostics such as himself have, implicitly, the wisdom and/or honesty to admit this – excpet Moby wouldn’t like to put it that way because he wants, like a good postmodern, to appear ‘humble’ 5. Throwing in the adverb, ‘ontologically’ may impress some people but it remains semantically and metaphysically vacuous (irony intended) in this last sentence which plays the classic postmodern card: suffering is caused by certainty. Which is unproven at best and can be shown to be false in many cases.

I like the music Moby – stick to it!

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