UNDERSTANDING OSLO – BREIVIK’S MANIFESTO

Just a few hours after I wrote my previous post the Mail on Line has published extracts of what it says is the 1,500 word manifesto written by the presumed Oslo murderer Anders Behring Breivik. 

These extracts fully vindicate the points I made in my previous post.  They show that Breivik was every bit as angry and hate filled as I suspected and that he had elaborated his bizarre beliefs to levels of detail that to any normal person would seem astonishing.  An interesting discovery is that Breivik’s hatred of women seems to be every bit as intense as his hatred of Muslims.  Needless to say this points to extreme feelings of sexual inadequacy born of sexual failure.  It is of course impossible for a man as hate  filled and angry as Breivik to develop successful intimate relations with a woman and his failure to do so will have made him more angry still. 

The manifesto also contains the all too typical reference to a powerful esoteric group.  In this case the group is the Knights Templar.  Instead of casting this group as the evil and sinister occult body that controls the world Breivik portrays it as a union of holy warriors dedicated to the great war against evil, which Breivik says will last for 72 years.  Needless to say he claims to be a member. 

All this is entirely typical.  As I said in my previous post I have come across a surprisingly large number of people with these sort of beliefs.  Based on my own experience I can confidently say that everything in Breivik’s manifesto is entirely the product of Breivik’s own imagination.  I understand that the police are concerned that Breivik has claimed that he is only one of twelve Templars charged with the great mission he claims to be undertaking.  The police obviously have to investigate every angle but I would advise them not to worry.  Again my own experience tells me that someone as peculiar as Breivik is most unlikely to have willing collaborators.  At some level Breivik is undoubtedly aware of the fantastic nature of his belief system and he will not have wanted to share it with others who would sooner or later have called its existence into question.  The claim of eleven other Templars should therefore be seen for what it undoubtedly is, a further example of Breivik’s fantasising.  Probably he borrowed the idea of the sacred brotherhood of the twelve Templar knights from the Twelve Apostles.

In my opinion there is very little that can be usefully learnt from this affair.  In any society however well ordered there will always be a tiny minority of troubled and angry people with bizarre beliefs.  There is always a small risk that one of these people will turn violent in the way that Breivik has done, though the proportion that does so is tiny.  Perhaps the only thing that can be said is that when people with such beliefs surface they require careful watching because the violence they deal out when they do turn to violence tends to be extreme.  At the end of the day there is however only so much that any society can do.  The important thing to do now is not to fret and worry about Breivik but to give aid and comfort to the living as we bury the dead.

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