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Winston's Journal after the End of 1984

by Jake West 11 days ago in literature

My personal reflection on the end of 1984 through the eyes of Winston Smith

Image Credit: https://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/lizanne

Recently finishing 1984, I felt compelled to write this post so that I could clear and organize my mind of some of the ideas that were presented in this book. Written from Winston’s perspective a few months or so after the ending of the book, I use this hypothetical perspective assuming that he has begun to question the Party’s intentions again, but can no longer decide who is correct. I highly recommend this book. I find it to be an eye-opening piece that thoroughly shows the way that society and ourselves can be manipulated. Constructing a horrifying dystopia, George Orwell brings to life the dangers and powers that can rule over us without even realizing it. I hope you enjoy.

The world is something that we hold by the definition of what we can all agree upon. We take no opinion at any more weight than another, except of course if it is an opinion that we ourselves decide to be weighted higher. Being a personal matter, the world is a subjective realm that can only be seen as objective with total agreement from all, or at least all that we find credible. But what do we do when we have an opinion with such weight that all others are nothing but an echo chamber with perfect pitch?

Big Brother. What is he? He is that we so perfectly follow. A rule of law that is true and shall always be true since it has always been true. A reference to follow above anything else. Above our experience. Above our logic. And most importantly, above our feelings. Big brother is that which we must give our lives to. It is what we live and die for. He is god. Not because he can make anything, but because everything is made due to him.

Imagine the climax of an epic movie finally coming into frame. The scene where the most blood is shed, where bullets soar but never land, and the damsel is significantly distressed. You can’t seem to even blink without feeling a tinge of regret. Everything you could ever want is on the line right NOW. I believe the ‘now’ is what is so important. This moment, in its erect state, seconds away from the final orgasm, is where the Party intends to keep the world. With Eurasia (and never Eastasia, unless it was always Eastasia) on the brink of defeat, yet so are we, the turning moment of the war is today. As my veins pop, and my head aches, my patience thins for the next bulletin. What will be the results? Will it be us or them who fall? Who is going to conquer who? Shall I die or win? The bulletin is posted, and of course, victory.

The explosion of energy is similar to that of a lion finally tackling its prey. But I am not alone, the party, which is all that is human, joins in my celebration as vibrant as I. Together our being becomes one and a feeling of absolute joy jolts through my essence. We scream and yell for our love of the party. For our love of Oceania. For our love of Big Brother. As Oldspeak would say it, this is not sustainable. After the climax would come a downfall, or at the very least a moment of rest and recollection. Resolution as they would call it. Followed by self-inquiry, one may beg the question, why did I just do as I did? But that is a way of the past. Before truth came to save us. Before Big Brother. How it will go, by the year 2050, or maybe sooner, the resolution will be replaced with the same climax. What had happened would be completely forgotten, with doublethink taking one’s memory for a ride, and by the next day the same people will be waiting for the same bulletin for the same military results. Anxious as before, they shall impatiently wonder, will it be us or Eastasia who falls?

This my love is why War is Peace. Who controls the past, controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.

This state of being, in its strange beauty, comes at a cost that I don’t feel we should ever have to bear. It is surely my ill mind for having such thoughts, but they nonetheless persist. Must we lose our individual love from our personal reality? Stipping the individual into the collective entity (the Party), our personal stories become one story. A story of rage, bloodshed, victory, and anxiety. Again, beautiful in its way, but partial a single-story shall always remain.

We lose ourselves when following another in faith. It may flow and feel so swell, but nevertheless, it is I who shall fall by this decision. Therefore, the question to ask is whether the I is worth preserving. Personally, for myself in a way, I think not. In some ways, I see myself as the Frankenstein of my childhood night terrors. Assembled from the parts of death that I can gather, I find myself as a conscious corpse with unparalleled power. It is scary to be me when this is true. When I am that. Hence why I would not be offended when asked to be walked with a lease. However, must we do this to all? To everyone and every part of themself? Blindly, must we fall at the hands of an impersonal “better”?

I do not know. What I do know is that if we do not, as it was before the Party, shackles will hold many of us in place anyway. I do not need a telescreen for me to watch my own back. I do not need thoughtcrime in order to question what I think. I do not need snitching party members for me to be careful of what I say. We seem to currently police ourselves plenty, I know that I do. With so many different views and ways that people “acceptably” are, we still seem to find ourselves in a pinch between what we should and should not do. Of course not always punishable by death, as an other you may suffer in ways that the Ministry of Love did not even elicit. And with no set code or universal standard outside of where you currently are, one conscious enough may persist in fear as they struggle to know the subtle rule of law for each environment. Therefore, it may just be possible that Freedom is Slavery.

If there is hope, it lies in the proles.

How do you show cattle that they need to only reach out with their feet and kick to kill the wolves that feast on their children? I suppose you can’t because I as a human is different from that a cow. Our language is broken, our lives are incomparable, and our consciousness is at different levels. I can not teach something of such a different standard an idea only contrived from my perception and understanding. Or maybe I can? The dog has learned to sit, the horse has allowed us to ride and the cow has grown accepting of our use of it. To make matters better, I do not speak of another species. I speak of humans. I speak of the proles.

So how do I reach out and tell them something they could do but would never know? How do you teach someone something they don’t want to learn? How do you get someone to see something that they choose to not look at? It seems to me that you can trick them, force them, or persuade them. Yet again, this idea must go a layer deeper. This assumes that the thing we need to convey to the proles is within the grasp of what they can understand. A dog can learn to roll over, but never algebra. So even if I do one of the methods of teaching an undesirable subject, then I must wonder if it is even something that they can see. Now given the desire to learn, can a prole truly understand the nature of its existence? Can it see past the day-to-day life it persists within? Can it understand what the party is doing and then gather the needed resources, intelligence, and support for a proper revolution? I don’t know.

There remains one further problem that I must address: I wish to rest on the backs of the fallen and ask for their forgiveness as I ascend to heights they could never reach. Although subtle, O’Brian brought this truth into the open. I may claim that I want this change for better, but my selfishness will cloud my ugly reality until it is too late to turn back. Therefore, my intent is something that should be put on trial. If not the party then who. If not the party then why. If not the party then what. If I am to remain in my human form and resist that of the party’s intent, then why is mine something we need to follow? What will I provide that it does not already? And if I do have such answers, what is there to show that I shall actually do as I say?

Questions with no answers. Chaos whispers into my ear. How can I even make a difference? At what cost? For what reason? This internal battle can be resolved in two manners. We can either achieve these goals and their answers, or we can stop asking the questions. The party is invincible, that much is obvious. Therefore, I have only one option to end my suffering: Ignorance is Strength.

literature

Jake West

I was born at a very young age

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