A former marine taught me jurisprudence.
Professor Charles Rice was a tough guy. This Irish man dripped with an attitude that said, “Don’t you dare call me a ‘mick.’” He was a no-nonsense guy who raised ten children and was fiercely loyal to the Catholic Church.
I don’t think he much cared for hippies.
In class one day, he said, “You don’t need to wear sandals to be counter-cultural. You just need to be a good Catholic.”
The advice to “be a good Catholic” wasn’t surprising, but the implicit suggestion that we “be counter-cultural”? That struck me then and has stuck with me for decades.
At the same time that Charles Rice was teaching law students, explaining natural law, and fighting against abortion, postmodernist icon Michel Foucault was traveling to San Fransisco bathhouses at the height of the AIDS crisis.
I don’t think I could find two guys more different than Foucault and Rice.
But shortly before AIDS killed him, Foucault coined the term “counter-conduct,” advising his followers that Western civilization itself had reached a point that required active resistance.
Rice and Foucault are right, but whereas Rice framed it in terms of resistance to an anti-Catholic culture and Foucault framed it in terms of resistance to the modern State, I’d frame it in terms of resistance to the left hemisphere.
We’re engaged in a death match with the left hemisphere. The left hemisphere is apparently intent on eliminating our right hemisphere. AI might be the left hemisphere’s end game.
There’s not much you and I can do about it. We’re mostly helpless.
But only “mostly.” We have one form of resistance: We can be counter-cultural in our day-to-day living. We can behave like guerrilla resistance fighters against the left hemisphere’s enveloping, joyless, mechanistic, doom.
We can do the things that the left hemisphere hates or doesn’t understand.
We can read poetry. We can do aimless things. We can garden and golf and bird watch, but without the left-hemspheric’s obsession with success (scatter seeds haphazardly; play without a scorecard; don’t write down the species).
We can take an interest in the things around us, things that don’t fall within the left-hemispheric modern State. Join a local club. Drink with friends at a local bar. Spend time with people for no purpose (and for the love of Charles Rice, don’t “network”).
There are many more ways to exercise your right hemisphere and resist the left hemisphere’s looming dominance. Find them and pursue them.
You’ll then be doing your part.