Anarchy, why not?
First, something about anarchy. When most people think of anarchy, they think of lawlessness and political disorder. In the Standford Encyclopedia of philosophy1, you can read in the introduction: Anarchism is a political theory, which is skeptical of the justification of authority and power, especially political power. Anarchism is usually grounded in moral claims about the importance of individual liberty. Anarchists also offer a positive theory of human flourishing, based upon an ideal of non-coercive consensus building. Anarchism has inspired practical efforts at establishing utopian communities, radical and revolutionary political agendas, and various forms of direct action… At this moment, I am not so interested in the political side of anarchism. There are countless forms of anarchism, sometimes also called libertarianism2, and like with all political tastes, they all claim some unique knowledge on how the world should be organized based on their conception of what the world is.
Where does the word anarchy come from? The word comes from ancient Greek3 anarchos and means “without a ruler.” The terms anarchy and anarchism are in more modern times used to depict chaotic situations in societies, for example, during wars, revolutions, and protests. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, anarchy was still primarily used as a synonym for chaos, but when a plurality of different political groups was formed, anarchists were amongst them. They used the name anarchy because they looked for a form of government without a ruler or ruling group.
Anarchy is still associated mainly with chaos (in society) these days. If you say that you are an anarchist, you better explain that you strive for a (world) community where people rule themselves, and a mutual understanding of life’s goals is understood. You can also say that you are a libertarian, it is a synonym for anarchist, but in the United States, the libertarian party has hijacked that name for their laissez-faire capitalism4 and lack of social responsibility. There are many forms of anarchism, and though I don’t want to align myself with one or the other, by stating my goals, I automatically position myself, if only in the camp of the none aligned. I don’t call myself an anarchist; I do this only if someone askes me, and I like to shock them or if I just want to be honest. What I want to argue is that we all live in chaos and thus anarchy. The universe started 13 billion years ago with chaos5 as one of its main drivers, which still drives us all and our society.
My goal in is to argue that we live in a chaotic world, and we have to find a new way to live with this notion. One thing we all are “forced” to do is to live in a box of values and opinions. Like I wrote earlier, I don’t want to align myself to any one group, but because I live in a society, I will be automatically put in a box of non-aligned people if I stubbornly refuse to choose, if I like it or not. I think that this habit of us (or our society) to battle the underlying chaos by putting a layer of order and organization on top of it is worth an examination.