Vril : The Power of The Coming Race

I’ve recently been pre-occupied with reading this book, Vril: The Power of The Coming Race. This is a very old but interesting book.

If I tell you that it is written by Edward Bulwer-Lytton in 1871, you would probably be scratching your head and ask me: “Edward who?”. So I’m not going to tell you that. Instead, I’m going to tell you, this book is one of the main source of inspiration for Hitler and the Nazi’s superior race propaganda.

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It is actually my second attempt at reading this book. The book is written in those classical English language (1871, remember?) which is not easily comprehensible to us who are only used to modern English. I first attempted to read this book when I was in secondary school (junior high), but it was like… 我读来读去 如读天书 those classical English felt like French to me and got me all confused. I lasted only 5 chapters without understanding what was going on before I gave up.

Now that I’m all grown up and have a better command of English (I think) and more importantly, am more patient, I have been able to read through all the chapters without tearing my face off and form some opinions about it.

Don’t worry, I’m not going to ask you to read this book. Classical English is really a pain to read, and I don’t want you to go crazy. So I’ll summarize the story for you.

Man discovered the Hollow Earth and its inhabitants. Man learned that the inhabitants are the descendants of the alternate survivors of the Great Flood (other than Noah’s gang), and they have become a technologically and physiologically more advanced race than the humans on the surface after having been through the same shit that is still going on on the surface (democracy, wars, domination). Man was regarded as a barbarian and later an equivalent of a pet dog to one of the families. Daughter of the family who is also the most beautiful, gorgeous and intelligent woman of this advanced race fell in love with pet dog human but was rejected. Princess of advanced race fell in love with this pet dog human. King ordered pet dog human’s execution. Daughter helped pet dog human escape back to his world.

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How’s my summary?

I’m rather amused with how the author thought the human was an inferior race, a pet dog to this advanced race, yet the most beautiful woman of this superior race could fall in love with the pet dog. Typical Englishman superiority notion. Just because you’re an Englishman, all the gorgeous bitches would fall for your charm, regardless of who they are. I suppose such an idea was very common in Victorian era England, when the English were still expansionists and thought they were really kings of the world.

But what I’m really interested is the political idea that Bulwer-Lytton was presenting. The subterranean advanced race is probably what we would call, in today’s terms, peaceful anarchy. They got to this stage after hundreds of years of killing each other until they discovered the Vril, which could be used as the ultimate weapons where even a few child could be able to wipe out entire cities. They started to realize the pointlessness of wars when every war would only result in total destruction of both sides. And because everyone has the power to destroy hundreds other, and anyone can blast the testicles off robbers easily, robbers became a stupid profession, the police became redundant, and soon even the governments collapsed.

I can’t help but feel that this author is rather prophetic. While in real life, we don’t as yet have Vril, we have nuclear bombs. I cannot help but wonder if we are soon reaching the stage where all the governments are going to let loose their bombs and destroy each other and everyone on the planet before we realize how stupid it really is to go to war. Maybe we will go through that period of great suffering soon, and maybe we will soon realize that all governments are equally stupid and do not really have our best interests at heart. Maybe when the bombs finally explode, we will come together to throw all the governments out the window.

Maybe we have been misled to fear even the very word “anarchy” itself. Maybe anarchy is really what we need, where everyone takes care of themselves and anyone who wants to lead/dominate others be shown the finger. Maybe that’s the real way to achieve peace…


I guess I sound confusing in what I’m writing today. It’s been awhile since I last wrote something this serious, haven’t I?

31 Comments

  1. I understand what you mean about old English. I find it hard to read too but I am not as determined as you. When I was in secondary school, my grandpa introduced me to the book Call of the Wild by Jack London. After reading just a few sentences, I gave up because it was so tedious. I wonder if you had to learn old Malay (Bahasa Klasik) in school. Same thing, so long winded.

    Anyway, I did read a prophetic book called 1984 written by George Orwell (who also wrote Animal Farm). That one was easier to read because it was written in modern English.

    • Heh, old Malay? Piece of cake. I’ve read the whole Sejarah Melayu (Sulalatus Salatin) book before. I thought old English were much tougher. 🙄

  2. Thanks for bringing this book to my attention. I hadn’t heard of it before and to learn it was inspiration for Hitler makes it all the more intriguing/ alarming.

  3. I noticed books from English writers way back when, even Enid Blyton shows blatant should I say, smugness about the English superiority and class.

    • Yes! I’m glad I’m not the only one who noticed. But then I suppose that is true for all the once great powers of the world. The ancient Egyptians, China empires, they all thought they were superior too. You will find the original historical recordings of Genghis Khan referring to Marco Polo as a barbarian coming from a barbaric nation in the west.

    • I guess not. I actually don’t read books by authors, just like I don’t listen to songs by singers. It is the book itself that I am interested in. If a book has an interesting title and Chapter 1 intrigues me, then I’m in. 😐

      • The idea that forms the book came from the author so if you have not checked out the other books by the same author (who may have expanded his idea in his other books), how would you know whether the other books will interest you or not?

        • You’re right, I don’t know. I mean, I usually ignore the author when it comes to reading a book (unless when I’m writing a blog post like this). When I’m done reading a book, I will only feel the book is good or not that good. I rarely think about “Wow, this author rocks!”. So I wouldn’t go and hunt down his other books to read. When I search for new books to read, I also search only by topics and never by authors that I’ve read before. For example, Hollow Earth fascinates me, so I will search books regarding Hollow Earth. If an author specializes in this topic, then probably I would read a lot of his works. But if he writes a lot of other stuff, then I probably won’t come across his other books. I like specific topics, not the ideas from specific men.

          I guess this is difficult for you (or others) to comprehend. I’m weird, I think..

          • I think the other books by this author is also about the same topics. Your way is not difficult to comprehend, just that you are limiting your views. Say the same author wrote about the same topics but one of his book is more popular than the others so when you search by topics, only one of his books came out whereas his other books on the same topics may be more superior but not popular due to some weird reasons so they did not appear in your search list and you will then miss out on them. No harm for you to go through the other works by the same author to see whether or not they are of the same topics or not and then only reject them if they are not of the same topics. If you reject them even before you go find out whether or not they are of the same topic mainly because you don’t like to check out other works by the same authors because you are different from other people like that, then you are just limiting yourself.

            • You sound like you know this author, hahaha! Have you read his other books before? Maybe you could recommend me some. Actually, after your persistent pestering, I might just go and look him up. Not because I realized my mistakes and changed my ways, but because you made me intrigued.

              It’s not that I reject them, I just never thought of books and authors like how you do. How can I reject them when I don’t even take note of them in the first place. I did not intentionally avoid the authors, the thing is they’re just not part of my considerations when looking for books to read. I suppose another way to put it would be, I trust fate to lead me to the right books to read. I suppose I can say that by this way, I could read more books from different people and expose myself to even more ways of thinking rather than sticking to one train of thought for a prolonged period of time.

              I actually have searched for books from specific authors before. But… only on cases where the author has made it clear the books form a series, like a trilogy or something. In my vocab, books that make up a series is considered 1 book. Like Twilight or Robert Langdon (Da Vinci Code) series.

              • I only knew of this author when you wrote about him here. I just read the wiki on him and this book and that wiki mentioned his other books as well. Disclaimer: I did not verify if the source of the wiki info is authoritative or not, wiki could be wrong for all I know.

  4. Serious thoughts, yes. Complicated – we need to feel violence in order to come to our senses. This world is messed up 😀 It feels like this will be a challenging year, what with the economy looking rather shabby…

    I don’t know if I will be able to read through this book. The sample you put there had me reading very, very slowly 😐

    • If we throw all the governments away, we throw all wastage of public funds away. Maybe that will be the solution to our economic troubles. 🙄

        • Well yes, if the governments suddenly collapse today. But if this is a gradual process? Imagine, if suddenly everyone is allowed to own guns freely today, it would be total chaos because all the crooks will come out boldly and kill everyone on sight. But given time, when everyone is equal and every have guns, when civilians could also shoot back at crooks without repercussion from law, then the risk of being crooks will be increased many folds. When it is pointless to continue being a crook, there would be no crooks left and the world will be left with civilians who have guns but are peaceful. After all, I don’t believe ALL humans are evil by nature. For example, I know at least you and me, if we possess guns, we won’t go on a shooting rampage.

          Of course, if what I say are to happen, it would take generations to happen. Meaning there would be great suffering for generations. So I’m just saying out loud, but I rather it does not happen at least until after I die. 🙄

          • Though in a perfect world we may all be equal in terms of social status, there is always room for greed (not just in the contexts of guns, but also medication, money). There is be bound to be someone to take advantage of the situation…then again, that’s the pessimist in me speaking 🙄

            • That would be true for today’s world. What I mean is, the possibility of such an evolved form of anarchy happening in the distant future, after generations of killing each other like what you think will happen. 🙄

              • Men and civilizations have existed for more than 2000 years already. Don’t you think 2000 years are more than enough time for your evolved form to happen if the nature of humans is such?

                • I think of men as a species, just like any other animal species (even though we have higher intelligence). It took dinosaurs over 100 million years to become extinct. If we talk about the modern human (homo sapiens), based on current discovery, we have only been around for less than 1 million years. so there is no reason to think humans cannot last for many million more years. When you compare a few thousand years over millions of years, it is but a tiny ripple. I don’t think mankind has reached the pinnacle of civilization. We’re probably still in the infancy stage in terms of evolution.

                • Dinosaurs being here for a 100 million years to be extinct. Extrapolate that to human species would mean that humans would be extinct too in 100 million years. You are such an optimist but then sadly both of us will not ever know how long human species will be around because in another 70 years you will be gone and I would have been long gone by then.

                • True, the stuff that I said, I don’t expect them to happen in our lifetime. I expect them to happen probably in another few hundreds or thousands of years in the future. Who knows what will happen, to be honest? Maybe some idiots will press the buttons and the bombs will totally destroy the Earth and mankind will become extinct.

                  I wonder if that really happens, maybe some new species will spawn, or some space traveling species would discover our planet. Maybe they’ll investigate, and maybe draw the conclusion that humans used to live here and got extinct because a giant meteorite hit and exploded. Hmm… I wonder if that’s the real reason dinosaurs became extinct. Maybe dinosaurs were intelligent creatures that killed themselves by going to war and blowing bombs up? Who can say for sure, since those stuff happened millions of years ago? 🙄

                  Okay, I’m sounding more and more crazy, better stop…

                • You know what, the evidence that dinosaurs even existed could be planted on this planet by aliens to make us think that dinosaurs exist. Ok this sounds crazy so I will also stop here. 8|

                • Who knows? Maybe what you said is also a possible correct version of events. You know, if you tell folks of a thousand years ago that people can fly around in planes, they will think you are crazy. So why can’t things that happened millions of years ago be far fetched for today’s imaginations?

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