Amerika

Posts Tagged ‘paganism’

Christianity And Paganism

Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

You can tell that humanity is a scared and disorganized herd of monkeys because there is never a single convincing explanation for any event, even the most important ones to our present day. Consider for example Christianity.

The official narrative used to be that Christianity unified Europe and moved it away from the pagans, who were prone to anal sex and other weird and promiscuous practices, and that Christianity formed the basis of our modern time, including The Renaissance™ and The Enlightenment.™

A counter-narrative arose which said that Christianity was an invader, that it oppressed the pagans and destroyed them in service to moneyed interests, and that it then erased evidence of the superior past and injected its mediocrity in place of the pagan wisdom. In this view, Christianity was the corruption of the West and gave rise to Leftism.

Maybe both have some truth to them. Let me retell the story:

  1. Wealth is death. Any society which becomes wealthy faces a trap: its old purpose is now gone, since it has conquered that which stood against it, and now it needs to find a new affirmative purpose or entropy takes over. But, this is difficult, since that purpose needs to be arbitrary and immutable, yet qualitative, which means most people simply do not understand it, and it is impossible to get a consensus together. Either it is imposed by force, or it does not happen. Without purpose, society turns inward, and focuses on human individuals and their desires instead of the ecosystem they form together that allows civilization to happen.
  2. The herd arises. When a civilization becomes wealthy and loses purpose, and then turns toward a facilitative society or one geared toward fulfilling the needs of its individuals, it quickly produces a herd of individualists, or those forming a collective of individuals dedicated toward the principle that every individual — and each thinks only of himself when saying this — should be forcibly included in society. They want to clear away restrictions against their personal participation, so they come up with the idea of “equality,” or that every individual should be equally included. This means that no objections against any one of them can stand, with a few exceptions that rapidly dwindle in number.
  3. The herd controls. The herd uses control, or the idea of regulating people equally by method in order to eliminate dissent, in order to force other people to accept the lie (that each person should be included regardless of abilities, genetics, class/caste, character or past behavior) so that they avoid the truth (that people are different and belong to a hierarchy in emulation of the order of nature). The goal of the herd is to diminish virtue, or the desire to do what is right/good independent of whether personal reward in the short-term arrives in response. The herd therefore likes anything that accomplishes its goal of breaking down organization, order, distinctions, hierarchy and virtue: pedosexuality, drugs, promiscuity, atheism, communism, anarchism, whatever.
  4. The herd seized Christianity. Naturally sane people, back when Europe was pagan, were pagan. Why were they pagan? Paganism is an outpouring of culture, not a third party known as “religion,” and so to be German (for example) was to have certain customs, practices, calendar, cuisine, beliefs and rituals… most of which we would now consider spiritual or religious, but for them were just part of being German. This is why paganism makes no sense as a religion; it is, like conservatism, a folkway and as such has no ideology or over-riding and underlying central theme, but instead is a collection of memories, experiences, stories, and other fragments of wisdom. For this reason, the sane people were pagan, and the herd saw this new foreign religion as a way to dominate these naturally sane people.
  5. The herd reprogrammed Christianity. The herd uses everything as a means-to-the-end of its own power; instead of using an ends-over-means analysis, where all things must serve a purpose, the herd short-circuits this decision and makes its own power the only end and regulates means/methods in order to do this. For the herd, Christianity was a property which could be renovated and made into a weapon. Contrasting this was the natural adoption of Christianity: as a written religion, and one of a single layer of interpretation instead of the many depths and obscurities of paganism or reality itself, Christianity had the power to unite people. And so, many switched over to it, and at the same time that the herd was infiltrating, the good people were pushing back and making something great of Christianity. Many inspired acts and works came of this process, but the herd won in the end because its message was simpler and thus, more popular.
  6. The herd hijacks everything. Once upon a time, there was a strong European tradition of being experimentalist, or willing to take on new thoughts and test them out. To the herd, this was a powerful symbol and signal of intelligence and self-confidence, so they promptly hijacked it, and turned it into liberalism — a bias for new ideas over working ones — and bohemianism, or a desire for behaviors which flaunt cultural norms and prioritize selfishness. They did the same thing to Christianity, turning a reverent religion (a Judaic interpretation of Greek and Hindu ideas) into a personal religion, at which point it became another adornment for the individual, and its real message — that the ideal is measured in terms of consequences, not feelings — was forgotten.
  7. Christianity became a pretext. If you want to eliminate your enemies, set up an Official Truth™ and then use that as a backward justification for crushing all who do not obey it; in this case, it was simple to categorize any dissidents from the herd thinking as “pagans” and then have the mob of well-meaning but thoughtless people without accountability crush those “pagans.” Since many of the sanest saw religion as a type of ideology, and preferred to stick to their folkways, many were “pagan,” but did not see it as a type of competing ideology as the new Christians did. For the pagans, their beliefs were simply a description of the world, and the possible causes, effects and consequences which confronted human decision-makers. But those ideas — realism — opposed what the herd wanted, and so it used Christianity as a pretext to crush the dissenters.
  8. The struggle continued. Most people who got involved with Christianity were normal people who thought that religious guidance might be a good thing. Some became true believers in the religion itself. This explains why Christianity was such a mixed bag: some good, and some evil. But this makes sense, given that a religion is comprised of humans, and they approach it with different motivations. Just because they join a faith does not automatically render them uniform with the same goals and principles. Instead, like civilization itself, it provides an aegis under which individual accountability takes a back seat to membership in the group, and often by distributing negative effects among the group, protects the aberrant individual from responsibility, and so increases the presence of deviancy over time. Paganism did not have this sense of group unity because it was not ideological.

And so, we are left with the usual moral ambiguity of human life. Saying “Christianity is bad” is as nonsense as saying “Christianity is good,” because Christianity is composed of individuals, and the quality of interpretation varies with them. In fact, the people who have something sensible to say would most likely be saying the same thing under Christianity, German paganism, Greco-Roman paganism or Hinduism.

If the past hundred years have done anything, it is to integrate some of those old pagan folkways into Christianity, both subverting its fringes and strengthening its core idea of the impossibility of separation from God. From Old World Witchcraft by Raven Grimassi:

Old World witchcraft is glimpsed in shadow because the shadow’s edge is the threshold of the portal to the inside. Stepping across the threshold and coming back again are what brings about realization. They reveal the difference between witchcraft as something to do on the weekend and witchcraft as something much larger and greater than the witch. Old World witchcraft is empowering and transformative. It is more than a philosophy and a self-image; it is how we interact with our connection to, and relationship with, all things.

There is a reason why witchcraft is traditionally linked to the night and intimately connected to the moon. In a mystical sense the moon is a form and is formless at the same time. From earth’s perspective the moon appears to change shape in the night sky and even disappears entirely for three nights each lunar cycle. Its shape is not constant like that of the sun and stars. Therefore, it becomes a metaphor for altered states of consciousness. To stand beneath the moon in a state of receptivity is to invite the “otherworld” into our mind, body, and spirit.

Witchcraft, paganism and the occult group together because they are informal religions based on the idea of natural balance instead of human order. That is to say that humans fit within a natural order, instead of asserting an order of their own over nature. This concept is also found in Christianity, but under-emphasized because of the need to promote a personal morality.

This shows us the distinctions between modern Christianity and pagan faiths:

  1. Exoteric. Christianity is written, like the law or theory, with the idea that it has only a single level of interpretation. If people read the text, they may argue over the finer points, but the basics have been communicated to them and they can follow the religion as if an ideology or symbol. This means however, that since no depth is expected, anyone who masters the basics can then twist the religion in any direction they want, and selectively cite it because the meanings of each passage are clear and therefore can be addressed in isolation, instead of as part of a tapestry of obscure ideas designed for those with the natural capacity and long-term dedication to pursue them.
  2. Personal. If Christianity has a fatal flaw, it is its individualism. Many people (idiots) confuse the core of the West with individualism, when really it is a contrary principle, which is “reflection” or contemplating the world and self to figure out how they work, instead of taking the self at face value and assuming that it is more important than the world. Christian morality is concerned with the rightness of actions in the context of the rules of a god, instead of effects in reality, for the most part, and this is a weakness because people then focus on avoiding “bad” behaviors but do not dedicate themselves toward good ones on a level above that of the individual.
  3. Foreign. To my mind, this is what will doom Christianity in the next hundred years: we cannot hide the fact that it was invented by people speaking a very different language in the very different area of the world known as the middle east. Maybe the Jews were European, but evidence suggests they were at least hybrids shortly after the events of the Bible, so they are not a fit with those of us who are European in descent.

It is for this reason that many are tending toward exploration of Christianity at its more logically-consistent extremes, much like the orthodox Catholics or Bruce Charlton pursuing Mormonism. They recognize that the core doctrines of Christianity are under assault and thus deviating from their Greek/Hindu origins into more Asiatic ideas which were originally at the fringe but become the core.

In my view, it makes the most sense to simply sit out this war. There is a lot to like in Christianity, and most of that comes from the Greeks, Nords, Germans, Hindus, Hittites, and others who contributed to its core. At the same time, it is committing suicide because, having achieved supremacy, it had no second act and so has passed into irrelevance as distrust of organized systems has risen.

Within a century, Christianity will not exist, having been replaced by an informal faith more like our pagan origins simply because people do not trust formalized faiths. The Bible however will live on as a resource used by those people, and it is likely that the churches will again become sacred places. European greatness existed before Christ, but will carry him forward into a new era.

Pagan Christianity

Monday, June 19th, 2017

The Right desperately needs to get right with God.

Perhaps not in the way most would think, this need arises from the confusion about the role of religion in the Right. Some want it to be the basis of the Right and to install a de facto theocracy; others see it as irrelevant; still others argue that conservatism is not based on a single method, as ideology is, and that religion is one part — perhaps not for all people — of a bundle of methods that together make a solution but are not in themselves solutions.

These seem to be prerequisites that can be accidentally made into ideologies. For example, racial and ethnic homogeneity is necessary for a thriving society, but in itself it is not a whole solution, only part of one. Similarly, deposing democracy and equality is a partial solution. Together these and other methods make up a complete society.

For that reason, it makes sense to view religion as not a solution in itself, but also something that at least many of us need. This gets us away from the theocracy that forces us all to become believers, and instead points to rule by culture, which requires strong nationalism to establish.

This takes us in turn to the question, which religion?

Varg Vikernes makes a compelling point for avoiding Christianity. It leads to Leftism, and conspired against our people in the past, not to mention creates the “personal morality” conditions which encourage virtue signaling. In his view, as in Nietzsche’s, it is entirely too pacifistic and fatalistic of a religion.

Onto this we might add one other shining elephant in the room: at least geographically — the Christianity Identity folks have some interesting input here on the origins of Biblical Jews — it is foreign, or simply put not European. The names are not in our languages, nor are the locations, or presumably many of the customs and values.

To this it is important to add that Christianity is also at least from a surface reading, which over time in the hands of large groups is what it will be streamlined to be, it is dualistic, or posits another world where the rules are more real than the rules in this one. In other words, logic is not logic; there is a different logic, more like a human logic, which is actually real.

DARG adds another failing of Christianity, which relates to the personal morality it champions:

The beginning of this is a clarification on the terms sacred and profane. Christianity has made [humans] believe that the sacred is themselves, and equivalent to “tolerance and love” (towards what they define as permissible, of course) and “feeling nice and warm”, and that the profane is everything that opposes that. How convenient. The more historical and philosophical stance, on the other hand, sees in the every-day world, and all that it holds, benign of malignant, as profane; and sees in the world of the exceptional, of man going beyond the merely human, the sacred.

The personal morality of Christianity, and its exoteric nature or tendency to behave like an ideological system more than a deep-learning skill, make it a mixed bag when it comes to religions. It is the great unifier, but that also means it simplifies the message.

Pagan faiths, on the other hand, are monistic — they believe there is no alternate set of rules for the universe, and that all that we need to know can be found in nature, science and logic — and esoteric, or formed of cumulative self-directed learning in which some are naturally gifted to go farther than others. Exotericism is inherently egalitarian; esotericism is innately hierarchical.

In fact, pagan faiths more resemble a philosophy and folkway with metaphysical implications than a religion, or organized spiritual dogma for the sake of shaping mass behavior:

This effort of combining all non-Christian religions under one umbrella was, in fact, a clever strategy by the early Christians to remove the “pagan” faiths altogether. Using the Norse traditions as an example, the Vikings of the early medieval period had no true name for their religious following. In truth, the word religion would have been an unknown, foreign term to them. The Nordic tribes preferred the word “customs” as—like the Greeks and Romans—their rituals, beliefs, and traditions were undefined and fluidly interpreted, orally passed down rather than rigidly studied. There was no all-encompassing word for the belief in the Aesir and Vanir, and the various other beings and deities the ancient Norse worshiped, and there was no written text discussing their practices until the Christian author Snorri Sturluson wrote their mythology down in the 13th century.

Now, the picture gets more complex because Christianity is mostly Pagan. It is clearly a derivative, or rather a compilation and synthesis of the indigenous faiths of lands the Jewish scribes were in contact with, featuring the Greeks whose philosophy they loved above all else. This means that there are Greek, Nordic, Hindu and other faiths retold in the Bible.

There was a reason why formerly “pagan” communities switched to Christianity, namely that it was both mostly familiar and more effective for manipulating herds of people. The exoteric nature of Christianity means that its symbols can be directly adjusted to cause people to behave one way or another. Some of this was positive, namely getting people to leave behind previous antisocial habits.

However, this displacement of the original faiths also led to cultural erasure. When a simpler and more easily understood version of a tradition comes along, especially one that is written, people simply adopt the new and forget the old, which most importantly contains the roadmap to understanding the reasons for the beliefs.

What this means however is that there is a bridge between pagan faiths and Christianity, and that for this reason, we can have faith that is not strictly entrenched in either one, only expressed through it, and that over time, this may change to the simpler and more internal, informal and naturalistic pagan ideation. Consider the Perennial nature of spirituality:

It also makes sense to have some form of metaphysical outlook, perhaps of a Perennialist nature:

At the core of the Perennial Philosophy we find four fundamental doctrines.

  1. The phenomenal world of matter and of individualized consciousness — the world of things and animals and men and even gods — is the manifestation of a Divine Ground within which all partial realities have their being, and apart from which they would be non-existent.
  2. Human beings are capable not merely of knowing about the Divine Ground by inference; they can also realize its existence by a direct intuition, superior to discursive reasoning. This immediate knowledge unites the knower with that which is known.
  3. Man possesses a double nature, a phenomenal ego and an eternal Self, which is the inner man, the spirit, the spark of divinity within the soul. It is possible for a man, if he so desires, to identify himself with the spirit and therefore with the Divine Ground, which is of the same or like nature with the spirit.
  4. Man’s life on earth has only one end and purpose: to identify himself with his eternal Self and so to come to unitive knowledge of the Divine Ground.

If we distill religions to their core and take the intersection, we see a basic starting point that does not necessarily need formalization and, if kept informalized, loses its “human” projection and interpretation, and starts to resemble more the pagan faiths and even older Indo-European religion that our pre-Greek ancestors adopted.

This takes us away from religion as an external constraint that we adopt in order to shape ourselves and become a mass of people acting toward some goal, and reverts it to its original form, which is an observation about the nature of reality that reveals hints of the metaphysical embedded within nature:

As that great non-church and heterodox Christian Rudolf Steiner said: to disbelieve in God is to be, in a real sense, insane; in other words, it is to disbelieve any possibility of coherence, meaning and purpose – which is to regard all of life as a delusion.

…And to deny God within us and the world is to live earthly life in a state of detachment – since we can only observe and never actually participate in reality: we can never know.

In other words, religion is rediscovered by those with clarity of mind who can observe nature; this is the essence of transcendentalism, in which joy arises from understanding the nature of the world and seeing it in logic, therefore wisdom, and therefore beauty and a positive intention toward those of us caught in it, which in turn implies a life-like force to the universe, which per German Idealism — also found in Hinduism — is thought-like, dream-like or composed of thought or information.

In this way, we can see how for the West to rediscover the divine, Christianity must converge on the less formal and more intuitive forms of religious faith, which are the folk customs and existential search of the inner self that produces our classically reflective outlook.

Already we see signs of this. The Orthosphere-style thinkers tend either to embrace Catholicism, or outward-in, religious thinking, or to go the other way and embrace transcendentalism with discipline. This leads to a more naturalistic interpretation of religion that is naturally less obsessed with personality morality and its means-over-ends analysis.

Pagan Christianity, in addition to the Perennial Philosophy traits mentioned above per Aldous Huxley, also has a different map of the cosmos and metaphysical. At its core, this represents a shift from three paths (Father, Son, Holy Ghost) to four:

  1. Information-Space
  2. Godhead
  3. God
  4. Gods

In this mythos, the natural order of a universe comprised of information comes first, and with it the notion that we each have a role to serve determined by our logical placement within this order. Natural law and logic come first, and within them there are other spaces.

Godhead is the animating force of all that we know and the most essential tendencies of the universe. This works within the information-space, shaping us toward the divine and influencing the birth of the gods.

At the top, there is an all-encompassing God which represents holiness itself and less of an active personality than a tendency, like gravity or rain, to order the universe into beauty by balancing darkness and light so that existence itself can prevail. Since the universe is relative, darkness is necessary to emphasize light, much like death gives significance to life.

Below that are the gods, or animistic forces with distinct personalities. These are manifested forces which act according to their own interest, which means that we can respect them without expecting them to judge us or treat us according to some moral standard of our own. They simply do what they do, but they reflect the spirit of godhead, and so are divine while bridging to the profane world of the mundane.

At the bottom are the creatures of Earth and beyond, including humans and plants, who exhibit spirit of their own. These are able to partake in divinity by seeking transcendence and avoiding hubris, but will never fully know what is on the other side because they are limited to a perspective of the physical and individualized.

Perhaps that is enough of a start for now. We have seen how Christianity and Paganism are not that much different, how they share a core, and how we can rediscover that core by starting from reality itself. As with all esoteric things, that represents a doorway opened, and a path upon which each of us will journey a different distance, often down different tributaries.

How Religion May Tear The Right Apart, Again

Thursday, June 15th, 2017

Over at Red Ice, Reinhard Wolff writes a great summary of how operant paradigm shifts produce new ages of history and the challenges to nationalist and traditionalist thinkers from that front:

With that in mind, it’s obvious that we need a new ideology – one that offers room for different religious inclinations.

This new mythos based on the fundamental laws of nature – hierarchy, identity, differentiation, upward evolution and struggle, to name a few. For regardless which stances one takes on metaphysical issues, the laws of nature reign supreme in this world, and civilizations that fall out of the natural order are doomed. This new ideology must support virtue and promotes excellence, strength, beauty, and honor. Most importantly, it must be able to transcend our differences.

Categories can baffle and befuddle us. More important than a particular religion, or even the choice of religion, is our desire to be good. The root of both conservatism and religion is found in a desire to be part of an order larger than the self; this requires enough maturation to stop being fascinated by desires, drama and attention.

That in turn requires a desire to be good, which in turn necessitates realism so that we know what will be good in reality by achieving good results. This forces a split from most religion and politics, which focuses on defining certain methods as good instead of focusing on whether the cumulative results of our actions produce something good and enduring.

In that sense, we do not need an ideology, but a cultural agreement that we wish to be good by doing good, and that religion may have a role in this but only where compatible. Religions will experiencing a type of editing through re-interpretation via this process, and through this, something curious will happen.

While we await the symbolism of a religion of the new age, we do not disagree on content, which is converging more on the pagan than the Christian. The pagan faiths — nature beliefs, not human ones; unwritten, not written; practiced, not theorized — are not the stories of the gods, but a general outlook that includes a belief in a natural hierarchy into which humanity fits and human individuals fit unequally.

If the Alt Right and related movements have a core, it is a rejection of the fundamental idea of The Enlightenment,™ which is that “man is the measure of all things.” Our focus instead is on reality, and how nature plus the divine is the measure of all things, including human survival. That “meta-religion” defines our future more than a specific denomination can.

Idealism And Platonic Forms

Friday, June 2nd, 2017

the patterning of trees, fuck communism

To reconstruct the West, we need a will to be good; this requires some understanding of what good is, and how in a long-term sense it is more beneficial for us to embrace good than the convenient and short-sighted, often referred to as “evil.”

That in turn requires recognizing that what the crowd refers to as “good” is evil and vice-versa, because knowing their own tendency toward evil and venality, they make an ideal of those behaviors in order to avoid criticism for them by those that know better.

This places us in a strange place: we exist in a wasteland where nothing is true and everything is suspect, but are seeking an occult or hidden truth of what is actually real, despite it being right in front of us. We are fighting the mental spam created by the needs and chatter of other human beings.

In addition, we recognize the bias of this time toward the present tense, because it has no future and fears any consequences of its actions. Hence an entire range of thought, from long-term practicality to metaphysics, has been made taboo by the agitation of the herd.

A bias toward the present tense will inevitably favor tangible and material objects over long-term predictions, such as the knowledge of patterns in reality that lead to outcomes far removed from their origins. Present tense recognizes only conditions of objects already existing where their properties determine outcomes, like a match producing fire but not the production of flame itself.

This leads us to questions of cause and effect. What is the cause, the material object or the pattern? Plato says the latter, and he finds support in modern religious thinkers as well:

As Ransom is told in Lewis’s novel, Perelandra, ‘You see only an appearance, small one. You have never seen more than an appearance of anything,’ and he sadly realises, ‘I have lived all my life among shadows and broken images.’

What we think of as tangible and firm objects, being the causes of themselves and having the end goals of themselves, are in fact the least solid part of the process: they are the effect, and the cause is elsewhere, probably in a bigger and more complex formation than that which we think of as physical reality or, at least, immediate physical reality.

Pattern, principle and natural laws — from gravity through human hierarchy — are more solid than the positions we are in now. We are fragile beings, prone to die at any moment or falter as our bodies or souls weaken, but the order of nature prevails over time, more statistically than in the instant. Our tendency is to confuse its momentary abeyance for an exception that proves its invalidity, when inf act the exception proves the rule.

Let us revisit perhaps the most profound thinker the West has produced, Plato, on the nature of reality:

Behold! human beings living in a underground den, which has a mouth open towards the light and reaching all along the den; here they have been from their childhood, and have their legs and necks chained so that they cannot move, and can only see before them, being prevented by the chains from turning round their heads. Above and behind them a fire is blazing at a distance, and between the fire and the prisoners there is a raised way; and you will see, if you look, a low wall built along the way, like the screen which marionette players have in front of them, over which they show the puppets.

I see.
And do you see, I said, men passing along the wall carrying all sorts of vessels, and statues and figures of animals made of wood and stone and various materials, which appear over the wall? Some of them are talking, others silent.

You have shown me a strange image, and they are strange prisoners.
Like ourselves, I replied; and they see only their own shadows, or the shadows of one another, which the fire throws on the opposite wall of the cave?

True, he said; how could they see anything but the shadows if they were never allowed to move their heads?

And of the objects which are being carried in like manner they would only see the shadows?

Yes, he said.
And if they were able to converse with one another, would they not suppose that they were naming what was actually before them?

Very true.
And suppose further that the prison had an echo which came from the other side, would they not be sure to fancy when one of the passers-by spoke that the voice which they heard came from the passing shadow?

No question, he replied.
To them, I said, the truth would be literally nothing but the shadows of the images.

Plato describes the inversion effected by reality here: we confuse what we see for the truth of reality, when in fact we are seeing the effect and the cause requires discovery, like solving a mystery, debugging a computer problem, inventing a new algorithm or tracing a fault in a line. Our minds select the weakest link in the chain, the manifestation or instance, and confuse it with the essence or cause.

With this in mind, we can see the wisdom of German Idealism: all in the world is thought or thought-like, because thought operates on the level of patterns and not pure material this-thing-hit-that-thing style thinking. For the golf ball to hit the distant hole, the swing must be of the right pattern, the ball balanced on the tee, the wind at certain levels, and many other factors in balance. It is not as simple as bashing a ball with a club.

Following up the previous part one and part two of this series, this article explores the foundations of European faith.

We know from Perennialism that there is an Ur-faith to all religions which believes that there is a cause beyond the immediate material reality; this takes both an agnostic form, in which patterning over time is more important than reality, and a monistic one, where the metaphysical is seen as a layer or level enclosing our material reality and producing its patterns and results. However, in all of these, the sane believe that this is an order based on nihilistic consistency, or logical actions independent of human desires and perceptions, and therefore is not of the primitive superstitious mysticism that blights third world nations.

A European religion will be like that: unconcerned with individuals, patterned in cycles and forces, and based on the idea that information and order are more important than material substrate. It will thus be Idealistic and Traditionalist, but not in the most common forms of these now, which apply modern superstition — either scientism or fundamentalism — to that which is essentially a logical and logically consistent process independent of our human monkey wishes.

The idea that there is a pattern beyond but manifested in the material might be called animism, or the idea that life has a form as a whole, and that this translates into events rather than those events arising linearly from previous events or material properties. Animism is the idea that life itself is alive and that living things are logical in the way thoughts are logical, meaning that they cast about for possible meanings and then choose the best, rather than being “objective” and “rational” in the way of humans approaching real-time decisions as if they were made in a lab.

Because the natural world is seen as sentient, for an animistic thinker significant events don’t ‘just happen’ – like inert billiard balls bouncing-off one another – instead events occur because some entity wants them to occur. For the animist, every significant event is intentional, every significant event has personal implications.

…The problem is that, for a modern adult, recovery of animistic thinking entails undoing the effects of an exceptionally thorough and prolonged process of socialisation that has buried animism under a vast superstructure of repressions. Modern adults cannot necessarily recover their animistic thoughts at will, even temporarily.

Methods used to help in the recovery of animistic modes of thinking have been known since the Romantic era. They essentially involve detachment from the social systems that tend to maintain objectivity and rationality. For example, solitude (away from people), leisure (away from the economy) and unstructured time (as contrasted with technologically-measured time). Direct contact with nature is another classic strategy. Under such conditions of societal detachment there tends to be a spontaneous resurgence of animistic thinking – and those who can achieve detachment, often strive to do so.

In other words, animism is the original condition of humankind and is obscured by the necessity of maintaining a civilization where most people cannot understand it, therefore need to be manipulated (a form of “control”) via carrot-and-stick style judgments. When we escape the modern world, we are able to see the original truth, and this points us not toward momentary adaptations as economic thinking does, but toward eternal paths toward clarity within ourselves, and through that knowledge of prescriptive use of those material truths so that they can serve cosmic or timeless truths (where “truth” means “a more accurate interpretation of reality relative to other human options”).

The main problem with the Christian interpretation of this is that Christianity is based on the Word, which forms a proxy for reality itself, and as a result it is quickly gamed by Crowdists, who turn it into a dualistic faith or one based on two worlds: (1) the physical world we know, and (2) a spiritual world where things are as they actually are, or are perfected. The problem with this is that it naturally creates a bias against reality because it is perceived as the physical world, and if the other world is perfect, then the physical world is wrong, broken or otherwise unimportant. Second, it encourages people to project their desires into this spiritual world because there is no data for how it actually works, so it becomes a manifestation of human intent rather than a reflection of the type of dry logical consistency we see in nature. Christianity takes on a “New Age” interpretation because people see in this “pure” world the idea of ideology, which is that in that world, things operate as they “should” according to human lowest common denominator desires, which reflect weakness more than reason and sensibility.

Animism relies heavily on the same mechanism as Idealism, which is a union between mental state and world, taking the ancient concept of intentionality to a level of ontology, or means of understanding the world:

In medieval logic and philosophy, the Latin word intentio was used for what contemporary philosophers and logicians nowadays call a ‘concept’ or an ‘intension’: something that can be both true of non-mental things and properties—things and properties lying outside the mind—and present to the mind.

Intentionality defines our relationship with reality and provides for us the basis of understanding Idealism. This definition is a complex way of saying that our mental concepts do not necessarily align with what is in the world, and that thoughts can be logically true without being true-in-fact, and that for that reason, our primary quest in philosophy is to figure out which concepts are accurate, which becomes difficult when there is not an external object to which they can relate. In animism, the world operates according to conceptual principles, which means that the mind can discipline itself to find the inner properties of external objects and from that, discover their actual nature as opposed to their merely-intentional or purely conceptual nature.

As a result, the ancient faiths were forms of monism or a belief that no matter what metaphysical layers exist on top of this world, the logical rules derived from this world also applied to those “worlds”:

Vedānta is nominally a school of Indian philosophy, although in reality it is a label for any hermeneutics that attempts to provide a consistent interpretation of the philosophy of the Upaniṣads or, more formally, the canonical summary of the Upaniṣads, Bādarāyaņa’s Brahma Sūtra. Advaita is often translated as “non-dualism” though it literally means “non-secondness.”

…According to Advaita metaphysics, Brahman—the ultimate, transcendent and immanent God of the latter Vedas—appears as the world because of its creative energy (māyā). The world has no separate existence apart from Brahman. The experiencing self (jīva) and the transcendental self of the Universe (ātman) are in reality identical (both are Brahman), though the individual self seems different as space within a container seems different from space as such. These cardinal doctrines are represented in the anonymous verse “brahma satyam jagan mithya; jīvo brahmaiva na aparah” (Brahman is alone True, and this world of plurality is an error; the individual self is not different from Brahman). Plurality is experienced because of error in judgments (mithya) and ignorance (avidya).

Humans break down any faith according to what is convenient for the human mental state, which generally involves that which requires the least discipline of the inner impulses and external behaviors of the self for intangible reasons. People will change in order to make money, make friends or gain social status, but when told they must change in order to be aligned with the order of nature that offers them no tangible reward, they tend to resist this and instead retreat into the world of their own thoughts, thoughts shared with others through language, and physical objects including the management thereof such as economics. This is the human world; it is easy to rely on, and it requires nothing of the individual but participation in nominal events such as jobs, social interaction and shopping.

For these reasons, much as we escape modern institutions because they are tainted with human illusions, the same must be applied to religion. Our goal is to discover the Idealism within Animism and through that, to understand the purpose of religion outside of its external trappings — work hard, be nice to other people, say the magic words — and through that, to rediscover how our inner goodness can find an outlet in religion for understanding the task of life.

In this light, the question is not so much Christianity or Paganism, but how to find in each the parts that fit with our task of spiritual revival in the West. Whichever one we use will eventually return to this original religion because people now have a memory of distrust for organized, formal and written religion. The result of this uncertainty will be a return to the pagan outlook, no matter what religion was chosen, of encoding belief in ritual and custom, not word and law.

Western Civilization Faces A Spiritual Struggle

Wednesday, May 31st, 2017

I think now, looking back, we did not fight the enemy, we fought ourselves, and the enemy was in us. – Chris Taylor, Platoon

In the previous post in this series, we established that Christianity alone cannot save Europe. It needs a cultural revival, which in turn needs aristocracy, leading to a sensible plan.

However, it is worth remembering that Western Civilization will not restore itself until it resurrects its spirit which desires to be more than materialistic. There is a step there which is required before we can get to religion, and religion cannot stand alone, but our spiritual struggle in the West begins with the desire to be good not in a personal context, but in the context of natural order. Our goal is to exhibit the inverse of hubris. In that mode, we seek to find our place within an unequal natural hierarchy, and do what is fit to the body in which we have been incarnated.

This need clashes with a basic human tendency to assert ourselves first, or “individualism,” which is a temptation whenever the human is not immediately threatened by want of food, shelter, safety or mates. The simplest form of human existence consists of caring about oneself only, and forgetting the consequences of actions beyond that.

However, civilization arose when people beat this impulse and started caring about what they created outside of themselves. In this viewpoint, the importance of actions lay in their effects on a long timescale, such that an individual would consider what would happen for the next ten thousand years or longer when contemplating what action to take.

That was the birth of the transcendentals. Transcendentals are immutable, yet relative, measurements, much like the thought process of an athlete who wants to do better than his previous record, no matter what that was. There is infinite improvement in life, but it occurs on a qualitative level, meaning proficiency and elegance more than raw factors like time taken or weight moved. A dancer can execute the same maneuver in the same amount of time, but add artistry, efficiency, acumen and aesthetic improvement on a scale reaching toward infinity.

And thus, we reach a sense of what it is we must reach for: the “good,” for example, but on the epic mythic-historical scale of existence beyond ourselves, and on a spectrum of measurement that includes millennia and beyond. What is good for today and what is good for all time are often markedly different things.

Remember Plato’s warning which identifies the root of civilization decay:

When discord arose, then the two races were drawn different ways: the iron and brass fell to acquiring money and land and houses and gold and silver; but the gold and silver races, not wanting money but having the true riches in their own nature, inclined towards virtue and the ancient order of things. There was a battle between them, and at last they agreed to distribute their land and houses among individual owners; and they enslaved their friends and maintainers, whom they had formerly protected in the condition of freemen, and made of them subjects and servants; and they themselves were engaged in war and in keeping a watch against them.

In other words, the good is that which acts toward “virtue and the ancient order of things,” namely the one stable form of civilization from which other parts of the historical cycle are deviations. Virtue means doing the right thing according to a hierarchy of nature, instead of acting through the deferential morality of the herd, which along with apathy forms the two major deviations from rightness.

Once we understand this definition of good, we realize how difficult the Occident is versus the Orient and Africa: while they have nature-religions in Africa, and either timeless Confucianism or momentary Shintoism in Asia, the Western Way is to live for a principle of eternity. We are the reflective people who seek to build in our souls a mirror of external reality, and then to bring it to a point of divinity.

If we are to resurrect this spirit, it will occur before we choose a religion or a philosophy. It is a gut-level, intuitive and soul-rending decision. It is the reformation of the being to be more than our glorious Simian heritage. We must want to rise to a level of excellence where we reach past evil, stupidity and the mundane toward the exceptional, glorious, good, beautiful, honest and real.

This spirit is more important than the form that religion takes. As Aldous Huxley points out, most religions have the same basic philosophy when we look for intersections and not aspects of them that are specific to their host cultures:

At the core of the Perennial Philosophy we find four fundamental doctrines.

  1. The phenomenal world of matter and of individualized consciousness — the world of things and animals and men and even gods — is the manifestation of a Divine Ground within which all partial realities have their being, and apart from which they would be non-existent.
  2. Human beings are capable not merely of knowing about the Divine Ground by inference; they can also realize its existence by a direct intuition, superior to discursive reasoning. This immediate knowledge unites the knower with that which is known.
  3. Man possesses a double nature, a phenomenal ego and an eternal Self, which is the inner man, the spirit, the spark of divinity within the soul. It is possible for a man, if he so desires, to identify himself with the spirit and therefore with the Divine Ground, which is of the same or like nature with the spirit.
  4. Man’s life on earth has only one end and purpose: to identify himself with his eternal Self and so to come to unitive knowledge of the Divine Ground.

Once we recognize the above as the archetype of religion, it becomes clear that we must focus on the good to reach the above, and then need to choose a religion that fits our culture. If Christianity has a fatal flaw, it is that it is foreign, in a foreign language, from a land which is not European and a people who at least now are no longer European.

Christianity won out over Paganism because Christianity unites groups, but by doing so in lieu of aristocracy and culture, it creates weak bonds that shatter and leave a lowest common denominator behavior in their wake. This is why the West is slowly abandoning Christianity: it thwarted our kings and then devolved to its core, which is individualism.

As a result, it will not be surprising if in another hundred years religion will be entirely different. We will use the same churches, many of the same rituals and songs, and even the same holidays. But the understanding will have changed: religion is not something you get from a book, but by going into a forest and searching your intuition for what is compatible with nature as you observe it.

In addition, despite the hopes of the religious conservatives out there, we cannot resurrect our civilization through religion. We can resurrect our civilization so that religion among other things will survive, but religion alone cannot save us; we need to want goodness first, and to change power structures to aristocracy so that we can rule by it. Only then can religion live.

This does not change the fact that we take a “religious” view of our survival: we are at war against evil, which sometimes wins with no rhyme or reason, but is always with us and so we must always be at war against it. We cannot use external forces to shape ourselves internally — such an approach is properly known as “materialism” — but must reverse our egos, which insist that we control our worlds, and instead nurture inner forces to manifest as external order in balance with both intuition and the natural world around us.

Julius Evola described this pagan world of tradition:

What most distinguished the pre-Christian world, in all its normal forms, was not the superstitious divinization of nature, but a symbolic understanding of it, by virtue of which (as I have often emphasized) every phenomenon and every event appeared as the sensible revelation of a supra-sensible world. The pagan understanding of the world and of man was essentially marked by sacred symbolism.

…On this basis, all the great pre-Christian cultures shared the striving for a supra-natural freedom, i.e., for the metaphysical perfection of the personality, and they all acknowledged Mysteries and initiations. I have already pointed out that the Mysteries often signified the reconquest of the primordial state, the spirituality of the solar, Hyperborean races, on the foundation of a tradition and a knowledge that were concealed through secrecy and exclusivity from the pollutions of an environment already in decay.

If there is a core to paganism and traditionalism, both of which overlap with a strong sense of “place” including nationalism, this is it: a Platonic understanding of form and pattern, in which all events and objects are manifestations of an underlying order in which all things have unequal places.

Since this pagan core forms the basis of the Perennial Philosophy which is also found in Christianity, it is sensible to say that Christianity is pagan, with additional ideas grafted on, but put into an unfortunate form. In this way, it is clear that the West will be neither non-Christian nor non-Pagan, but probably a bit of both for some time as the original faith is resurrected in its esoteric — cumulative and unequal — form.

There is more to say on this, but it should probably occur in a subsequent post.

Paganism Cannot Unite Europe; Christianity Can, But That Will Be Our Doom For Reasons Unrelated To Christianity

Tuesday, May 30th, 2017

Über-Right-wing mastermind Varg Vikernes has been engaged in a video dialogue with Swedish trad-Right guru Marcus Follin, a.k.a. “The Golden One.” The topic of their discord appears to be Christianity, with Follin arguing that it can unite Europe and Vikernes arguing that it cannot.

In his recent interview with Amerika, Ramzpaul argues that “Paganism did not bind all of Europe, Christianity did.”

Who is correct?

Some analysis oriented toward logical fact will show us that they are all right, to varying degrees, but that the question may have become mangled by our modern orientation in thinking. To see this, we have to look at the nature of what it means to unite a nation or a continent.

There are many ways of uniting a nation and we might rank them from “strong” to “weak.” The weakest are things like ideology, economics and politics. These are unions of convenience and reflect no inner impulse by people to work together toward a certain ideal. Others are intermediate, like religion, which is still external, where the strongest are internal, like race and tribe.

We should also consider the degree of unity. It is not hard to get people to act together in self-interest, but this produces the side effect of people acting against unity because self-interest is stronger than what binds them together. If the unity of a group is based on a weak force, it will rapidly disintegrate and the group will devolve to the lowest common denominator.

So our question is not a binary — unites/does-not-unite — but a question of degree and specific topic areas, namely what is united and how long-lasting those bonds will be.

One cannot unite a nation or a continent by religion. Religion straddles the line between internal and external. It is internal because religion is understood through the intuition, but that applies to general religious feeling, and not a specific religion. As a result, we are left with only the external, which is what might be called a religious dogma, for lack of a better term.

Modernity specializes in using the external to control the internal. You see a symbol, decide to obey it, and that influences how you think about the world. You are controlled and shaped as part of a mass of people because everyone is equal, so numbers matter more than quality of person or the unique insights of that person.

Internal motivation however requires understanding and cannot be communicated through symbols. It can be sketched, outlined, silhouetted, hinted at and described, but the actual thing cannot be conveyed between one mind and another. The person must be able and ready to reach that stage on their own, no matter how much hinting and nudging goes on.

This means that by trying to force people to unite on religion, we are being very modern and forcing the use of external traits to shape internal ones. In this capacity, religion behaves like an ideology — comparable to Communism or egalitarianism — in which the mass shows obedience to the ideology, and for doing so, is accepted in the group.

At its core, this method fails because the idea of ideology is external manipulation, which means that the individual is acting for reward and to avoid threats. This means that they do not actually internalize the ideology, but obey it like a traffic cop, tax auditor, or meter enforcement. They obey because it is convenient, but the real principle taught is self-interest.

Paganism recognized that only culture can bind us. Culture is both external and internal, in that anyone from a specific area has at least a genetic affinity toward the values of that culture. Through culture, an interpretation of religion arises that fits the specific group and enables them to be effective in using it.

Culture however cannot stand alone. People do not spontaneously unite around culture because it is intangible. It consists of sentiments, aesthetics, “gut feelings,” intuition and other completely organic and non-symbolic components. Culture requires strong leadership formed by an aristocracy instead of the weak leadership — bound with weak forces — of authoritarian states.

Aristocracy is strong power because it has the right to be arbitrary. A king does not have to prove that there should not be a block of ugly apartments next to a cozy neighborhood; he just orders it, on the basis of his judgment and aesthetics being superior in terms of understanding natural order (i.e. more “divine”) than those of others. Usually the king is right; the herd is always wrong.

Now this causes us a problem, because we have one strong way of uniting a nation or continent (aristocracy/culture) and many weak ways. The problem with the weak ways is that they will work at first, and then fail catastrophically.

Consider the history of Christianity. It was adopted for practical reasons because unlike Paganism it was written down and could be understood by the average person. It united the continent. But then, clashes between kings and churches arose because they were competing for power. The singular power of the kings had been broken by a weak force.

Within a few hundred years, Christianity then began its death cycle, and today the only people found at churches are the old and sick. Was this a problem with Christianity?

As it turns out, no: it was a consequence of using a weak force where we need a strong force. Christianity can only thrive under aristocrats because they return it to its proper role, which is spiritual guidance, and it must like a wife defer to the husband for questions of leadership, safety, long-term planning and war.

If we unite under Christianity, it will become an ideology, and we will then have a false unity and a controlling force followed by its collapse and our reversion to the lowest principles of self-interest. Since a particular religion like Christianity is external, it controls by self-interest, and when it fades, only that principle remains, but all restraints on it are gone.

Ancient societies operated not through a single method, like ideology, but through many heterogeneous methods in service to a few strong principles. Aristocrats were those who got to the bottom of any question, and with this knowledge, then asked themselves what they could do to make the situation turn out for the best. Wisdom and nobility together were the requisite abilities.

Weak forces fail for the same reasons all human groups do. They become proxies for reality, and then people learn how to game the system by working the proxy, and forget how to achieve the results they want in reality. The letter of the law becomes more important than the spirit of the law or its goals, and the group collapses.

In other words, Follin and Ramzpaul are right: Christianity can unite Europe. But then, Varg is also correct: that weak unity will then destroy Europe, much as it proved problematic in the past.

This does not mean that Christianity is a bad thing per se, only that it is the wrong thing to use to unify Europe. Until we remove democracy and restore aristocracy, Europe will not unite except on weak forces, which will collapse into quasi-anarchy like ideology, economic systems as motivation, and politics have.

At the same time, we must consider what Europe should look toward in terms of religion. But that is a question for another post, perhaps tomorrow.

Western Religion (And Religious Westernism)

Monday, January 2nd, 2017

Among us now come many who have staked all of their hopes on a single tool to fix a complex situation, for example, religion. Many especially among our most learned and thoughtful believe that society must begin again with religion as the tool that makes this happen, but they would produce the worst of possible results, much as happened when Hitler treated race the same way: as a tool.

Our time is ruled by social popularity, democratic voting and consumer-based industry. We are accustomed to creating tools, whether physical or institutional, that shape people around us by forcing all of them through a filter. In this filter, they must either obey the dogma or face some kind of sanctions, although those seem only to fall on the good taxpayers and not those who make lives of crime.

The problem with tools is that they not only fail to contain meaning, or knowledge of goals (“ends”), but that they actively displace meaning. Your mind only has so much space of focus, and if all of the focus goes into methods (“means”) instead of ends, then the reasoning behind doing things is lost. This allows fools to compete with the wise by emulating them, and the audience cannot tell the difference.

Of those people who want religion to save the West — fundamentalists, evangelicals, some traditionalists and pentacostals — the analysis remains consistent because it has been so for the past two hundred years. They talk a good deal about morality, and how they will set an example, which turns out to mean they will go to their church, drop out of society at large, earn money and pay taxes.

In short, they will not fight the enemy, but will enrich themselves, and in the meantime, be the good stupid little sheep that any parasitic system needs. If you want to know why people are fleeing churches, it is that the Christian conservatives act like morons, and the rest of the flock is too busy trying to be hip, young and liberal so they can get some of those donations, but it never works for long.

People who are trying to use religion to save the West have made religion into a political organ. They want to use it like a tool to filter people and force us all to obey what becomes a de facto ideology. In other words, they make religion into liberalism by attempting to use it as a force against liberalism.

A more sensible vision, as offered on this site, is that we will not have a single over-arching theory as liberals do. Even conservatism itself has two general planks, time-proven methods and transcendental goals. Religion is part of this, possibly an inseparable part, but it is not the core. The core is a desire to be realistic and from that, to choose what is best for ourselves and recognize that the rest of humanity will not. That leads to something like our four pillars, varied methods shaped around the goal of excellence through realism and self-discipline.

In other words, our basic outlook has to be evolutionary. We rise because we target excellence, but most of the world will always be a human wasteland because most people are dishonest because they are solipsistic, in the eternal weakness of humankind. Our big brains become mental bubbles in which we live while life passes by outside, and we waste our time on garbage instead of making greatness of our days.

Every part of life demands greatness. Even the simplest acts of craftsmanship, agriculture and day-to-day leadership can be improved qualitatively as an infinite dimension. There is always room to be go further, but it is not through a change in methods, but through refinement of our understanding, self-discipline, aesthetics and other inner skills.

We do not know what the future holds for us, but it seems likely that there will be a rebirth of Western religion. This will occur through a desire to restore the West by finding reality, and will emerge from our focus on what is real, which includes religion but is not limited to it. Religion in fact can serve as a proxy, a game or a legal puzzle, for understanding this reality. The tool then becomes the master, and the master the slave.

This religion may even be a revitalized Christianity. Writers like J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Paul Woodruff and T.S. Eliot have given us a vision of what that might be like, with Tolkien and Woodruff leading the pack. But more likely, the strength of Christianity — its communication through fable and laws — will be its downfall. In our new complex era, we need something more.

Another writer, Michel Houellebecq, expresses something else: admiration for Christianity, but recognition that its vitality has faded, and so it needs to be restarted and renewed, if not remade in our image. We do not need a Western religion; we need a religious Westernism, a belief in ourselves in our goodness that includes the will to find God in all things, but not through the tired manipulations of the flagging church.

It is likely that the Western religion will be like our original pagan faiths, unwritten and in fact, not formalized. It will not be used as a tool, where the religion is the means of changing our motivation, but will be discovered as part of daily life. The ancients might have said to us that they did not have religion, only an awareness of an order within the patterns of life, and that this transparency allowed them to avoid turning it into a dogma, an ideology and a tool.

Our original religion comes from nature and is based in the idea that nature reflects a more complex order than man, because man must fit into this order. We study patterns and from them, can make some conclusions which are firmer than any material objects in their prevalence in our lives. For example, we notice that life seems to strive for beauty, balance, harmony and purpose, always refining itself toward greater complexity which is a form of simplicity with many layers, not lots of unconnected detail in the modern “complex” way that is really ornamentation.

To the ancients, religion was inseparable from any other form of knowledge. They knew that the natural world was everything, but that it had layers which are not visible to the living, and it has spaces to which the non-living pass, but that these are battlegrounds not of good versus evil but order versus randomness, with evil being an agent of that randomness because it is moral selfishness, or hubris.

Their beliefs were logical and rigorously ordered, not symbolic as the Asiatic religions were, and they were not backward like the process of using religion as a political tool. Instead, they sought to put each thing in its place, and then improve everything qualitatively according to the order found in nature. This is a more mature faith than what we have now, and the only type of belief that can aid us in our task of restoration.

Snapshot: The Problem Of Christianity

Friday, October 28th, 2016

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On the Right, anger rises over Christianity. Too often, Christians are seen paying lip service to conservative values, and then either going Leftist or adopting a stance of passive resignation, congratulating themselves on their moral sacrifice while letting the disaster gain strength around them.

In the former, Christians confuse the “universality” of Christianity — that there is an order of God which applies to some degree to all individuals — with universalism, or the idea that this order applies identically to all individuals, the same way they misunderstand equality to mean zero hierarchy.

Like the original idea of equality, Christian universality was originally intended to mean that all people are given the same chance to rise above themselves. Unfortunately, there are two glitches: as Baron Evola points out, written religions quickly become universalist because they confuse the exoteric with the esoteric, and people will naturally re-interpret any concept of “same chances” as “same outcomes” because it flatters their egos.

Thus, we find a design flaw in Christianity… the Word is its own enemy because its meaning crumbles under the onslaught of individualistic interpretations. Some say the solution is Catholicism, but this makes the problem worse by providing a centralized area of interpretation which is then gamed like any other political resource. In fact, our current Pope who has more in common with Communism than Christ is proof of this.

The pagans laugh at this, but ignore a problem in their own approach. By not writing anything down, they guaranteed that it would be lost instead of corrupted, but this is more a function of its declining popularity than the method of “graceful failure” designed into it. Christianity won because it had basically the same values and could be spread easily to larger groups.

In fact, it might make sense to view Christianity as a superior spiritual technology. Its simplified nature makes it perfect for groups, and by making people act in unison, it can be a powerful mass motivator. This strength is also its weakness, because when it becomes corrupted, it encourages insanity just as strongly.

However, this problem is not found in Christianity, but in the nature of mass motivation itself. Any sufficiently motivating force will be misinterpreted because individuals interpret rules, words and symbols in the manner most beneficial to the individual, that is, closest to “anarchy with grocery stores.”

Centralization fails for this reason, or at least is only part of the puzzle. Christianity in history represented a bubble, first gaining great strength, and then losing it once the Christian idea — the burden on each individual to get right with God — became hammered into the usual human entropy, or equality.

This leaves us with a troublesome situation. Christianity is not, as Nietzsche alleges, the origin of liberalism, but its victim. It was however complicit in leading to the power of liberalism because of its focus on the individual. At this point, it becomes more of an “alternate reality” into which conservatives slip instead of addressing the world, perhaps a consequence of its dualistic view where the only perfection is found in heaven and Christians should simply wait for that instead of trying to get it right here in life.

Our real problem is the tendency of conservatives to throw up their hands at the world and go back to what they were doing. For over a century, they have been doing this. They rationalize that somehow the situation will work out, or that the Left will fall when its programs fail, or other ways of making an excuse and going back to work so they can pay the taxes that fund the State.

This is why many of us growing up in the 1980s ran from both conservatism and Christianity: the only people we saw who admitted to these beliefs were absolute morons or were moral weaklings who had permitted the situation to come about in the first place. You will not find many Generation Xers inside of a church or Republican convention for this reason. To us, these groups appeared as retards and liars.

One needs only to look at the lyrics to the only real Generation X artform, death metal and black metal, to see the rage at Christianity and conservatism explode. The broken wings of angels and desecration of all purity are popular topics. In the Gen X worldview, Christianity and conservatism were the forces holding us back while the world burned.

In particular, Christians and conservatives indulged in the illusion that everything in the world turns out just fine if all of us work hard at our boring jobs and pay those taxes. Just lie back and enjoy it, in other words. They said this because any actual rebellion would personally inconvenience them, and they were “Me Generation” too!

In our present time, many on the Alt Right think that a return to religion will save the West. This is also an illusion based on personal convenience. The West needs to bootstrap itself by ending the insanity and nurturing sanity, which is a bigger question than religion.

In fact, at first, it is oppositional to religion because people need to understand how nature and the world work before they seek a spiritual meaning, or they will end up in the same dualism that convinced their ancestors to do nothing while insanity took hold.

We need brutal realism. This takes a form that includes religion, but only in parallel with other vital institutions as expressed in the four pillars. Religion is not the cause; realism is the cause, and religion is one of the effects or methods and principles used to achieve the goal, which is a golden age of civilization.

To understand this, we need to go back to the pagan origins of Christianity. In this view, there is no Word, only variant interpretations of an ur-spirit that pervades all existence. This spirit is not oppositional to reality, as it is under dualism, but united with it or patterned in parallel to it, through a doctrine called monism.

This way, we can understand religion in its proper role: as a tool for understanding some aspects of reality, only in parallel with realism. It does not stand on its own. It is not a cause in itself. It is a means to an end, and that end is clarity about reality, both physical and metaphysical.

By doing so, we allow a space for religion — which more important than bringing comfort, brings joy to many — that does not allow it to subvert the rest of our needs and turn us into solipsistic individualists who shrug and go back to work instead of confronting vast social problems head-on.

Book Review of “On Being a Pagan” by Alain de Benoist (Steve Mcnallan)

Saturday, August 1st, 1970

I have stated from time to time — most notably in my article in  Tyr Volume 2 – that we who follow the Germanic Way need to be philosophically savvy. We must be able to debate our intellectual opponents, whether they are the local minister or a trained Jesuit.  Perhaps most importantly, we need the well-rounded training in the history of ideas that will enable us to explain the case for Asatru compellingly and coherently to intelligent Christians who might, given the right circumstances, join our ranks.

A magnificent tool for accomplishing this task arrived in my mailbox a few days ago. Inside the usual padded envelope was a book titled, simply, On Being A Pagan. The author was Alain de Benoist, creator of some fifty books and several thousand articles, mostly in French.  Mr. de Benoist is perhaps best known as a founder of the scholarly and profoundly pagan “French New Right.”

I had known for some time that Ultra, the same publishers that have brought us the remarkable Tyr volumes, had intended to produce this first English translation of de Benoist’s opus. I am not disappointed in the result. It is a “must-have” work, and I am so convinced of its importance that I have ordered copies for distribution via the AFA website.

Apart from the ability to express and defend our beliefs in a sophisticated way, what does On Being A Pagan offer us? The thing that first leaps to mind is the word “maturity.” In the first chapter, the author tells us that his greatest fear is not that
paganism might disappear — indeed, it has never really gone away despite the most prolonged and pervasive repression in the history of the human race. Rather, the greatest concern is “its reemergence under primitive or puerile forms, kin to that “second religiosity” that Spengler rightly described as one of the characteristics of cultures in decline. This is also what Julius Evola wrote about as “generally corresponding to a phenomenon of escape, alienation, and confused compensation, which is of no serious consequence on reality…something hybrid, decrepit, and sub-intellectual.”

The message is clear. When civilizations are falling apart, people become desperate. Those who perceive the problem often react instinctively, turning back to their racial or cultural roots for security and, hopefully, for answers. However, the solution is not to be found in resurrecting old forms and repeating the past in a literal way. What is needed, instead, is to bring the essence of the past into the present where it can be applied by men and women living in this age. Translated into the special case of Germanic religion, this means not trying to imitate the ninth century (or the sixth, or the first). Instead, we must bring the distilled values and soul of the past – precious drops from the Well of Wyrd – into our own lives and times, and with them revivify our people. Cultures die, nation-states die, but the Folk and their spirit do not have to die with them. They can survive and thrive by bathing in the eternal essence of the Gods and the Ancestors.

On Being A Pagan contains a multitude of other lessons for us, each as important as the one just discussed. Does that mean you will agree with every point de Benoist makes in this book? Not at all. Some will find him too cerebral. (No surprise, since his approach is necessarily intellectual.) Probably de Benoist would be uncomfortable at one of our blots – but then, philosophers often live in a world outside our own comfort levels. Any such objections to On Being A Pagan are inconsequential when compared to the richness of ideas put forth in this volume.

This is an important work. You can order it from the AFA for $20 plus $3.50 for postage and handling. http://www.runestone.org

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