Achilles: Spengler on How to Live Our Best Lives


Spengler often mentions Achilles from Homer’s Iliad in his work

The New Modern Man | Spengler’s Decline of the West Series

The 3,000 year old epic Iliad by Homer, considered the first and best of the epic poets, boldly lays down what today would be considered the choice between being an Alpha male or a Beta male. Spengler presents the plot and gives us the choice in Man and Technics:

An ancient Greek legend tells us how his mother put before Achilles the choice of whether he wanted a long life, or a short life full of deeds and fame and he chose the second.

The safety-seeking, coddled life of today’s manlets would be blasphemous to the masculine men of history. From childhood, the innate behaviors that go with masculinity are drugged, shamed, and ridiculed out of boys. The result is a long, dull life where nothing of note happens for the average Beta male. He is indoctrinated with Marxism by the public school system, taught to hate himself by educators and the media, told he is a rapist for having sexual thoughts about women, turned into a corporate, tax-paying cog, and thereafter dulls his pain with weekly drinking binges and sex that excites rather than fulfills, going to his grave full of regrets. The top five regrets of the dying illustrate this empty lifestyle, foisted upon Western man by liberalism, corporate and government micromanagement of his conduct and choices, and a Puritanical, work-worshipping, sex denying lifestyle:

  1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
  2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
  3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
  4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
  5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

This epitaph can be useful in guiding men to make better choices before our ultimate fate comes. We need to live lives true to ourselves and not what others (especially Marxists) expect of us; not work so hard to enrich others but to enrich ourselves; express our true feelings no matter how much the SJWs scream, flop around on the floor and foam at the mouth; realize the importance of friendship; and do things that make ourselves happy – to hell with what women and society think of us.


Monument to the Discoveries, Lisbon

Explore, Dream, Discover

Author Mark Twain also knew the choice men have, again echoing the 3,000 year old wisdom of the Iliad that Spengler was so fond of.

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

For shame, we men have allowed ourselves to be turned into shadows of our former greatness. Putting it all into historical perspective, today so-called progress is worshipped by the West even though history shows the entire house of cards we build up eventually falls apart. Moreover, what are we progressing towards other than authoritarianism and not being able to breathe without asking permission first?! Spengler writes:

World history appears very differently from that which even our own age allows itself to dream. The history of Man is brief in comparison with that of the plant and animal worlds on this planet, to say nothing of the celestial realms. It is a steep ascent and fall, covering a few millennia, a period negligible in the history of the Earth, but for us who are born with it, full of tragic grandeur and force. And we human beings of the twentieth century, go downhill seeing. Our regard of history, our faculty of writing history is a revealing sign that our path lies downward. Only at the peaks of the high cultures, just as they are passing over into Civilizations, does this gift of penetrating recognition come of them for a moment.

Indeed, we seem to be headed downward. Allowing ourselves to be tamed and turned into sheeple that are placed on a government tax farm and corporate labor farm has only accelerated our fall. Women want no part of men who aren’t bold, fearless, leaders and indeed they will not even breed with Western man in sufficient numbers to keep his society from crumbling. Some of us run away from this mundane existence while we still can.

In modern parlance, the choice Spengler gives us equates to living fast, dying young, and leaving a good looking corpse.

Faced with this destiny, there is only one worldview that is worthy of us, the aforementioned one of Achilles: better a short life, full of deeds and glory, than a long and empty one. The danger is so great, for every individual, every class, every people, that it is pathetic to delude oneself. Time cannot be stopped; there is absolutely no way back, no wise renunciation to be made. Only dreamers believe in ways out. Optimism is cowardice.

While “leaving a good looking corpse” is hyperbole, it is exaggeration that’s used to make a point. In the choice between liberty and security, we have chosen security and it has dulled us as men and made us controllable.


Men of history tell us better a short life full of deeds rather than an empty, long life of security

Live Our Best Lives

Rather than following the wishes of our masters and doing what is best for them, we men need to figure out what is best for us and then make concrete choices to make sure our wishes are fulfilled. Knowing that history shows us our wishes will not be granted to us nicely by those in positions of power leaves us with Spengler’s final paragraph in Man and Technics:

We are born into this time and must bravely follow the path to the destined end. There is no other way. Our duty is to hold on to the lost position, without hope, without rescue. To hold on like that Roman soldier whose bones were found in front of a door in Pompeii, who died because they forgot to relieve him when Vesuvius erupted. That is greatness; that is to have race. This honorable end is the one thing that cannot be taken a Man.

Our bellies may be full, but our spirits are empty, dulled by the browbeating from divide and conquer politics and the mediocrity of Socialism.

In this final chapter of Western Civilization, Western men have collectively chosen the long life of security and slavery, not the short life of deeds. Perhaps it would have been better to choose the honorable end, standing up against all forms of tyranny over the mind of man rather than adapting to today’s emasculating culture with the mentality of a slave. Even if as Aristotle said, slavery is man’s natural state, it’s better to hold on to the lost position of freedom to the bitter end rather than cowing before our corporate and government masters.

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One comment

  • As an Argentinian, I can’t say I feel proud about the legacy the “Che Guevara” left behind, as he was a left wing extremist. However, one quote of his was tailor made for this situation: “I would rather die on my feet, than live on my knees.”


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