Much attention has been given to the origins of what is now called the MGTOW phenomenon/movement. previous articles I’ve written address the MGTOW manifesto as a document that can be described as what I would call “mgtow in name only”, a tradcon screed that places more emphasis on making women be nice to men again as opposed to a true redefinition and rediscovery of what it means to be masculine. A gentleman who goes by the name of theplaugedoctor has furnished me with even more evidence that contradicts this belief that mgtow was originally pro-marriage, and has only been now corrupted by the likes of youtube mgtows, (who are taken as a whole, likely the most influential portion of the mgtowsphere to date.)
I will reproduce some of his findings here, what follows is the results of the theplaugedoctors investigations into the original writings of the supposed mgtow “founders” taking place even before they wrote the manifesto.
I believe it is important to document the history of MGTOW correctly, to prevent the concept from being butchered (when mainstreamification of MGTOW occurs) by people pointing to the Manifesto, as was done, for example, in the terrible Vice Article on MGTOW. So I was personally curious about the origins of MGTOW, which caused me to do some digging with Google. It was claimed that the “MGTOW manifesto” was written during a meeting of the two MGTOW ‘Founding Fathers’ Ragnar Jensen and Meikyo in October 2004, in Hickory, North Carolina (Zed the Zenpriest was also invited but could not attend due to illness). However, I came across this post by Ragnar, dated December 1, 2004, which stated;
Today I believe we need even more activism and together with a few other guy’s it has resulted in an idea about ‘MEN GOING THEIR OWN WAY’ based on zenpriests essay ‘Ignoring women’. Those other guy’s will speak for themselves in due time.
The idea is to instill masculinity in men. To make men understand that they don’t have to cater to women unless there is a ‘quid pro quo’ situation. Men doesn’t need someone to compete with. They need someone to help them. Men naturally enjoy being with other men in bands or brotherhoods, so they should go ahead and start some men’s club’s and enjoy that. Men should also understand that you don’t have to live with women, that they can live a fullfilling life without living with women. This doesn’t mean without sex, not at all – it might, on the contrary, be with too much sex – depending on your personal preferences. [emphasis added]
The takeaway here is that MGTOW was based on the essay Ignoring Women, by Zed the Zenpriest. And what does Zed state in that document?
Men now must completely destroy marriage. It is too corrupt and too fouled to fix. It is a derelict building which MUST be torn down so that something useful can be built in its place.
We cannot stop the marriage strike. The real “men’s movement” is millions of wildcat strikes[*] of one man who has woken up to what bullshit “marriage” as it exists today really is.
No matter how big a dam one builds, a river will always overcome it. We cannot either push, or hold back, the river. It will proceed at its own pace.
We can, however, clear out the snags which naturally hold it back and let natural forces speed up the current.
Women have turned their backs on us when we needed them, now we must turn our backs on them when they need us. [emphasis added]
(I highly recommend reading Zed’s essay in full, which, by the way, has been gathered in “The Book of Zed the Zenpriest: The Collected Wisdom“). It is this essay, Ignoring Women, not the so-called “MGTOW manifesto” which is the true MGTOW manifesto (founding document of MGTOW).
(Zed is even mentioned in this very interesting post as the person who invented the word “MGTOW”, not Ragnar and Meikyo.)
Ragnar then concludes his post with what he refers to as a “small essay” (not “manifesto”) of his own, which advocated “two strategies that come together in one”, namely,
“Instilling masculinity in men” and
“Ignoring and shunning women [!]”.
Note that this essay does not describe the three strategies
“Instilling masculinity in men”
“Instilling femininity in women”
“Working towards limited government”
As did the later version of the “Manifesto”. The takeaway here is that the “MGTOW Manifesto” could not have been written during the ‘founding’ of MGTOW in October 2004. Ragnar does not even call it a “manifesto” but a “small essay”, and Ragnar’s “small essay” does not correspond to the later text of the “MGTOW manifesto”.
Note that the text of the Ragnar’s essay is not based on a traditionally-conservative gender role for masculinity. When viewed in the context of his post, the notion of “instilling masculinity” in Ragnar’s essay clearly refers to the modern MGTOW definition of masculinity (that is, “not kowtowing or grovelling to women”), not some trad-con definition of stoic breadwinner. And “feminine qualities we need from women” such as “responsible”, “respectful” and “honest”, also coincide with todays MGTOW definition of not putting up with women’s blame-avoidance, disrespect, and lies.
(My only negative commentary is: in his mentioning of making women “feminine”, “nurturing”, and “supportive”, it does seem that Ragnar was interested in using MGTOW to “hold masculinity for ransom” as Barbarossaaa put it, in order to induce change in women’s behavior, which is something other MGTOW or modern MGTOW are not interested in.)
It first seemed to me as though the third MGTOW ‘Founding Father’ (Meikyo) does not have much of a web presence. Googling [mgtow meikyo] only resulted in 66 hits! However, the word “meikyo” (明鏡) translates as “mirror of the soul”, and after some digging I found that Meikyo had a MGTOW blog called Mirror of the Soul. In a post dated Tuesday, March 30, 2004, Meikyo writes:
Marriage…what a freaking joke. I have being boycotting weddings of my friends’ for almost 5 years now. I give the excuse “one of our manufacturing plants caught on fire today and we are trying to get the equipment back up and running, I won’t be able to be there”. Like I really want to show up to a wedding and waste my day sitting and standing around talking to a bunch of bride maids trying to find a man to hook into the marrriage trap. No thanks. How come the bride gets all these gifts? Why doesn’t the groom? Because a wedding is a celebration that the woman has trapped the man into the matriarchal system and he is now her “bitch”. If you are stupid enough to get married without carefully considering the anti-male laws in this country beforehand, you deserve to be a woman’s bitch. If two people really love each other, why have this grandiose ceremony anyway? Just tell each other you love one another and live up to that. Furthermore, what is up with this marriage license crap, I can’t believe people blindly get one of those things which is a legal agreement between a man, a woman, and the government. What the freak is the government doing involved in two people’s committment to one another? We have some truely wacked laws in this country. Makes you wonder how we became a super-power in the first place. [emphasis added]
(The rest of Meikyo’s blog is also worth reading; for example, in another post he states
“Something you might want to put in your back pocket for future reference is that whereas feminists are upfront that they want to control men, traditional women employ stealth techniques to do the same to men.”
“I don’t understand why men can’t get over the fact that American women are biatches and are a total waste of time and money for them.”)
This makes it clear that all of the three original ‘Founding Fathers’ (Zed, Ragnar and Meikyo) completely advocated the Marriage Strike and viewed MGTOW as being based on shunning marriage and shunning women.
This brings me to the curious fact that Ragnar is currently married, as is stated in this interview with Ragnar and someone else, also (incorrectly?) described as MGTOW co-founder, “Solaris” (who by the way is also married!). I don’t know when and why they got married, but it appears we have a case of Mark Minter Syndrome. For those who don’t know, Mark Minter was a prolific poster of epic rants in the manosphere, about how evil marriage was, and no-one is his right mind should get married; yet later, he decided to marry a single mother! (Be careful that this does not happen to you!) It is quite possible that Ragnar Jensen, just like Mark Minter, is a traitor to the cause, and now is attempting to backpedal on his original statements!
P.S.: Whenever someone claims that the original definition of MGTOW has nothing to do with avoiding marriage or avoiding women, direct them to this post!
It should be noted that despite what any of these so called mgtow founders claim was the original intent of mgtow it no longer matters, since mgtow has long since shed it’s original skin and morphed into something much more complex and nuanced… Even still, I wanted to share this because it shows definitively that mgtow did not in fact originate from this silly tradcon document/manifesto, not only has mgtow existed for thousands of years, but the current manifestation of it came about as a way of moving away from gynocentrism, not toward it in the form of marriage contracts or tradcon apology. more on this later gentleman.