Arktos Journal – Arktos https://arktos.com Tue, 10 Dec 2019 14:45:00 +0100 en-GB hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.3 The European Way – What I Have Learned from Arktos This Year https://arktos.com/2019/12/10/the-european-way-what-i-have-learned-from-arktos-this-year/ https://arktos.com/2019/12/10/the-european-way-what-i-have-learned-from-arktos-this-year/#comments_reply Tue, 10 Dec 2019 12:54:04 +0000 https://arktos.com/?p=7824 Advent is upon us. Ordinarily, we would have reflected upon the past year, as we venture closer to the Winter Solstice and the birth of our Lord. Today, we are seldom close to nature and her cycles, not to speak of finding time for reflection – bare necessities that the corruption of modernity rarely affords. I don’t know about you, but upon turning to these twelve months of 2019 and the wall-calendar, ruined by innumerable scribbles of business, I found that I could not get Arktos out of my mind. Was it because they had published my book earlier this year (which I cannot fail to shamelessly plug here)? Rather, it was for this: what I have learned from the shared spirit of the various writers of Arktos has led me, and I venture to say all of us, to think of our people across time – not past and future in terms of a quantified scale of events, but as a living, ongoing narrative. So, what have I learnt from Arktos, from this loose band of European men, reaching out to each other, to our shared essence, toward an answer to the question of who we are and where we are going?

One thing is for sure: we do not feel at home. Have we ever? Shall we ever? The answer, we seem to find, is, ‘Perhaps, no.’ Yet, the drive onwards remains – we leap upstream, toward the sun, in a river that runs out toward perfectability. We know what we are doing even if we can’t articulate it yet; the spirit within us is the whole glorious, beautiful, joyful yet solemn exercise, proceduralised. What we are doing at Arktos is attempting said articulation. And, no, this is not an analysis made in the spirit of modernity that we so loathe – we are not reducing the European psyche to a mere computer with a camera or programming or what have you. We are more Platonic than that. The very reason we are striving and bounding upwards in body, mind and spirit is because we are perceiving something beyond. Our very souls are in no wise contented to stop at the categorisation of ‘things’, quantifiable things which can be plotted on a scale, just as the apogee of the era – this scientistic empiricism at the heart of the modern liberal democratic beast from below – has sought to do with everything, and most with especially us. And what of the unquantifiable that is both bursting out of the heart of the European spirit and flooding in from beyond, past what I can reach out and grasp with my hand, far further yet from what I can abstract with my mind? I’m not simply talking about, say, our categorisation of apples and oranges into ‘fruit’ – as generic and impossible to comprehend as imagining a generic piece of ‘furniture’ without simply picturing the tables and chairs which comprise that category in our brains. What of beauty, goodness and truth? These defy modernity, refusing to be contained – and so do we, for these three qualia characterise us and we, them, in that uncanny, supernatural dance which we call European civilisation.

And what is that civilisation, for all my talk of articulating the idealistic quest of the European spirit? The answer has been with us for so long and is still present within, even after it has become verboten for the plague of bien pensants. Ingrained in us is our instinct that our civilisation and the cosmos itself is an analogy of the Logos, the higher order that is imperfectly animated in the natural order of our world, just as our cathedrals’ artistry is a picture of the heavenly, or as, to paraphrase Plato, time is the moving picture of eternity. Of course, our civilisation is not identical to the ideal, but like a piece of art, it points to its author: as St Augustine was able to put into words for us in The City of God, the spirit that built our Christendom was not in the hearts of all European men, but in its composite our civilisation, the spirit and city of European man pointed to the Spirit of beauty and truth, however inexactly they depicted these things in the world.

Dark, alien forces have turned our warriors into mercenary bands employed by modern states, satisfying the warmongering lusts of strangers over lands where the blood and bones of our ancestors do not rest.

But, how was this manifested by our ancestors, and how are we innately and tropistically seeking to manifest it today? A naturally recurring theme among us is that of the class division of our people. No, I am not referring to any modernist conceptions of economic classes etc. I am speaking of the tripartite, traditional division of our people. Of course, this is not to dismiss the way that Europeans have been libertarian in our jurisprudence, resulting from the relatively noble quality of our men and our ability to develop networks of patriarchal, sovereign authorities, from the village and guild up to the emperor. The Catholic Church has since systematised this behaviour into what we now call subsidiarity, and which, when actually applied, has proven the healthiest political model in modern Europe. Thus, what we really need are more European babies with wholesome, traditional upbringings, and fewer social engineers but I digress. Other than vertical divisions of authority, the tripartite separation of our people is vital: a division into the spiritual, Oratores: “those who pray”; the warrior, Bellatores: “those who fight”; and the worker, Laboratores: “those who work”. Above all, I am delighted by the number of Arktos writers inspiring the warrior soul of our people; the sacred, kingly spirit of the knight needs as much encouragement as it can get. In order to reclaim these three estates, we will need wills of steel as well as fiery hearts. Not to speak of what has happenedto our dehumanising markets and the secularising, degenerating of our culture, what has happened to our warriors is diabolical. Dark, alien forces have turned them into mercenary bands employed by modern states, satisfying the warmongering lusts of strangers over lands where the blood and bones of our ancestors do not rest. Our current situation is an all-round abomination.

What then can we expect from the future of Arktos? The real question is: what can we expect from the future of our people? Not only do I hope we will begin to abandon the dehumanising, derogatory, modern concepts with which we are labelled – as for instance the American category of ‘white’, which does our ancestors’ unsearchably deep cultures grave injustice. To me, taking a European American boy and labelling him by the colour of his skin relative to another people his ancestors never knew is impious; indeed, it seems almost blasphemous to me. We are European! You do not have the time in your short life to measure the meaning of that word. That is who I am and you will sooner wrestle my soul from my body than take that identity from me. Part of developing our holistic, cultural character and being will mean restoring the aspects of us as a collective people. We must start with ourselves as a proper subject, including our subject-subject and subject-object relationships.

I would go so far as to say that a re-nomadisation of bands of men to live on the move may keep the warrior class in touch which the ancient Indo-European roots of our ancestors.

Our loss of our spirituality is at the root of our idolatrous consumeristic cycles; we perpetuate endless desire with desperate shopping habits, viewing ourselves as replaceable economic units within a machine – for that is all the Leviathan nation state has become. To restore our understanding of ourselves being within a comprehensible world and to restore our sense of being consumed by and for one another, we must embrace our spiritual traditions; the Mass comes to mind, in particular, as the explicit union of our souls into one people, one person even. Following this, we can look beyond mere market mentality and regain our sense of collective purpose and no longer see each other as mere competitors for scarce resources, but understand that the fundamental nature of man is not red in tooth and claw as modernity has indoctrinated us to believe. To the contrary, we have to accept that the highest nature and culture of European man is fabulously lovely, and not at all like the perversion we have come to accept as given.

With proper subject and object relations enculturated, this might yet inspire us to review our sense of war, defending what we know to be right in the face of these violations of our sacred values The disturbing of God’s peace by heresy and the disturbing of God’s peace by brigandage were not separate matters to our ancestors. Markets have proven to sell out our sacredness to the worst profanity and must be tempered by that masculine warrior ethic which keeps our men from accumulating power through economic means, these being little more than the accumulation of ease, weakness, effeminacy and corruption – the vice of the bourgeois. We needn’t wonder why our society, in which there is no place for the spiritual and warrior class, but only the bourgeoisie of the worker class, has become almost void of traditional masculinity. We must restore our warrior class if we are to defend our culture, and restore our spiritual class in order to have a cultural framework to defend. Fellow Arktos writers have even suggested diets and lifestyles for doing so; I would go so far as to say that a re-nomadisation of bands of men to live on the move as do many Mongolians, may keep the warrior class in touch which the ancient Indo-European roots of our ancestors.

Whatever the future holds for our people (and vice versa), we stand aside from the world this Advent, at least in spirit; we see the zombified emptiness of black friday consumers, their abuse by the Sarumans of the world, and the casting of our warriors into the literal gutter of the maddening road to a dishonourable death. So let us reflect at this time, curl up with a few good Arktos titles and take courage – we have the hope of new life ahead of us.

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How I Developed My White Consciousness https://arktos.com/2019/12/04/how-i-developed-my-white-consciousness/ https://arktos.com/2019/12/04/how-i-developed-my-white-consciousness/#view_comments Wed, 04 Dec 2019 13:24:53 +0000 https://arktos.com/?p=7804 My pen name is Johannes Scharf. More than half of my life have I been writing about race, culture, and religion, mostly in German. Why is it that I devote so much of my time to this particular cause? When I visited the Louvre in Paris last year in December after protesting with the gilets jaunes, I had tears in my eyes upon leaving the museum. What I had seen was a gigantic treasure vault of European art watched over by drowsy black guards who apparently had no appreciation for either the aesthetics or the subjects of the paintings and sculptures. Good heavens, I believe one was even picking his nose! But why would they be interested? It is not their history after all. What was so overwhelming and, in fact, depressing was that I realized that all this fine art will probably be left to rot the very moment white Frenchmen will have ceased to be a majority in their native land. The artists who created these paintings were old white men, so why bother preserving their works of art?

My first book, Sein oder Nichtsein (To Be or Not To Be), was banned in Germany a few years ago despite there being nothing in it that would have proved punishable even under the strict German law. I lost many friends and acquaintances as well as two jobs in the wake of my activism. I have sometimes wondered whether it was really worth all that trouble. I have sometimes felt tempted to simply shut up and blend in. But then I recalled George Orwell’s Winston Smith insisting on two plus two equalling four. In this brief essay I will reflect on how and when I reached the conclusion that two plus two indeed equalled four, and that race was real.

I have sometimes felt tempted to simply shut up and blend in. But then I recalled George Orwell’s Winston Smith insisting on two plus two equalling four.

I came to realize that I was somewhat of a dissident at the age of thirteen and started becoming politically active about two years later. Now, looking back at the age of thirty-one, I believe I know for certain which events in my childhood shaped my understanding of race. Long before noticing that I was in fact a heretic, I had developed a racial awareness. For example, I remember asking a black man, Bist du ein Afrikaner? (‘Are you an African?’) when I was only a few years old – much to the embarrassment of my mother. Born in Richmond, Virginia, I moved with my parents to Southern Germany, where my father is from, when I was one year old. I grew up in a small town close to the Swiss border and only a mile away from Lake Constance. My parents were the ministers of the Protestant church and I felt very much at home in this neat little town. In kindergarten, I remember there being two Turks, Alican and Selçuk, with whom I got along just fine. I knew that they were not exactly like me, but I also felt that they did not pose a threat to me and to all the other boys who looked and talked like me. A few years later, in third grade, my class received two black kids who happened to be twins. As in kindergarten, I had no negative feelings toward the black twins at all. Quite to the contrary; we became friends and we visited each other several times. However, I did notice that they smelled very different from anyone I had known thus far. I discussed this observation with my mother who, again, seemed very uncomfortable with the topic.

Before this encounter with the other I had been in foreign countries with my parents and my siblings multiple times. We had visited England, Scotland, Sweden, Switzerland, Austria as well as the United States, and on each and every one of these occasions I had felt a strong kinship with the people living in these foreign lands. They did not seem that foreign to me at all. And when a Swedish boy joined my class in seventh and eighth grade, nobody really counted him as a foreigner – just as I myself was not seen as a foreigner despite my mother being American of only partial German but rather predominantly British descent. The first time that I felt utterly alien in a foreign country was when I visited Israel with my father and my sister around my thirteenth birthday. It was, of course, exciting to be in such an environment – especially since it was the beginning of the Second Intifada – but I did see my dad get short-changed by Palestinian mongers twice. They looked him straight in the eye and lied to his face. I felt that this would probably not happen in Sweden or Scotland. I ascribed this sort of behaviour to the Arab mentality.

After these summer holidays in Israel, we moved to the city of Pforzheim. It was there that I fully embraced the dissident worldview. Pforzheim, about 50 percent ethnically German at the time, was so radically different from the small towns and villages I had lived in before that I had a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that this was supposed to be a German city. Some of its neighbourhoods reminded me of Palestine more strongly than of the Germany I had known. Only one third or so of my classmates appeared to be ethnically German, and some of these exotic last names I associated with Eastern Europe. In this new environment I rapidly – perhaps even instantaneously – developed a strong Germanic consciousness that still excluded Eastern Europe and Southern Europe. It was my love of Greek and Roman antiquity and the Renaissance as well as the fact that Eastern Europeans and Southern Europeans were occasionally targeted by Turks and Arabs, who simply saw them as whites, that led to my developing of a white consciousness.

West Africa exists everywhere where the majority of people descend from West Africa, and Europe exists everywhere where the majority of the population is of European stock.

This white consciousness was reinforced when I worked on a container vessel as an engine cadet from 2011 to 2012 and traveled to countries like Jordan, Djibouti, India, the Ivory Coast and Nigeria. I saw many places no tourist would ever have the chance to visit. And I saw a lot of filth and garbage – particularly in India and Africa. When, upon completing basic training at Fort Benning, Georgia, a year and a half later, I strolled through the black boroughs of Atlanta, I realized yet another thing: West Africa exists everywhere where the majority of people descend from West Africa, and Europe exists everywhere where the majority of the population is of European stock. That marks the destiny of Haiti and Australia, of Liberia and Canada, of Sierra Leone and Denmark. Or as the famous German-French journalist and best-selling book author Peter Scholl-Latour put it: ‘He who half-absorbs Calcutta does not save Calcutta, but becomes Calcutta himself’. It is almost as simple an equation as two plus two.

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A Philosopher’s Declaration of Independence https://arktos.com/2019/11/28/a-philosophers-declaration-of-independence/ https://arktos.com/2019/11/28/a-philosophers-declaration-of-independence/#view_comments Thu, 28 Nov 2019 14:55:19 +0000 https://arktos.com/?p=7793

Whoso would be a man, must be a nonconformist.
…Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind.
…The doctrine of hatred must be preached, as the counteraction of the doctrine of love… Check this lying hospitality and lying affection. Live no longer to the expectation of these deceived and deceiving people with whom we converse.

– Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Self-Reliance”

The United States of America is often mistakenly considered a democracy. Even some of our recent Presidents have spoken as if it were a democracy, and one of them called for spreading the fire of democracy around the world. Well, we have seen just what kind of fire that policy has spread in the Middle East. In fact, the United States is not a true democracy, and most of the Founding Fathers of America considered “democracy” a dirty word. They were students of classical Greek and Roman thinkers like Plato, Aristotle, Xenophon, and Cicero who reasoned that democracy was pretty near to the worst form of government that there is. Only tyranny is more vicious than democracy from a classical perspective, and the Founding Fathers viewed democracy as a “tyranny of the majority.” Those with a poor education in history think that democracy was some shining accomplishment of the Greeks, when in fact almost all leading Greek intellectuals were harsh critics of democracy.

A philosopher is someone whose thought engages with fundamental questions concerning Truth, Beauty, and Justice, in a way that leads to the discovery of concepts with a potential to catalyze scientific and political revolutions.

Analysis of the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, and the various writings (including the private letters) of the Founding Fathers make it clear that, rather than being a democracy, the United States is grounded on the concept of Natural Right – sometimes also known as the Rights of Man. The founders of the American constitutional Republic – and science by the way also some of their French revolutionary colleagues – saw Natural Right as a universal ethical standard. In his book The Rights of Man, Thomas Paine, who set off the American Revolution with his more widely read pamphlet Common Sense, explicitly and publicly states what others of the founders privately believed: Natural Right is so universal that it applies even to all of the other intelligent beings throughout the Universe, so that the bell of liberty rung by the American Revolution is not even limited to all of the oppressed individuals on the planet Earth – it reverberates throughout the Cosmos.

For Deists and Freemasons such as Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, and other key founders, the “Creator” in the Declaration of Independence was not the God of the Bible but the macrocosmic order reflected in the microcosm of reason that allows us to perfect ourselves. This relationship between an intelligence inherent in Nature at large and the conscientious self-consciousness characteristic of human nature is at the core of the idea that we have certain rights that are “inalienable” – in other words, not given by any government and therefore not justly ignored, withdrawn, or violated by any government.

Even if a 99% majority of people in this country were to vote through their elected representatives to strip individuals of their natural rights, their votes would be null and void. Military officers who have sworn to uphold the Constitution could legitimately disempower a congress or President that acknowledged such a majority vote. So, again, the United States is very far from being a democracy. It is a constitutional government dedicated to the protection of the Natural Rights of Man, where “man” means not just men and women but each and every intelligent being in the Universe.

The American founders thought that democracies will always be instruments of master manipulators, whether through the coercive power of the collective unconscious of the ignorant mob or through the dealings of oligarchs who hide behind the façade of democracy in order to outlast other more forthright forms of tyranny. Any authentic philosophical project ultimately represents a rebellion against all forms of tyranny, including tyranny of the majority. Its goal is the highest human self-consciousness and the most creative self-determination. If a society believes that there is an eternal, unchanging Wisdom that can be definitively attained by a person living within the present time, and that another intelligent person need only to study under such a sage to have this knowledge imparted to him, then that society will never see the kind of scientific and political revolutions that are catalyzed by genuine philosophers.

A philosopher is someone whose thought engages with fundamental questions concerning Truth, Beauty, and Justice, in a way that leads to the discovery of concepts with a potential to catalyze scientific and political revolutions. The philosopher’s ethics and politics must be grounded on his metaphysics and epistemology, and this integral thought has to be guided by an aesthetic intuition comparable to that of the most extraordinary geniuses in literature and the arts.

Metaphysics asks about the ultimate nature of reality. Ethics is concerned with the question of “the good life.” Epistemology is concerned with the theory of knowledge or how it is that we can know what we claim to have knowledge of. Politics is concerned with the art of statecraft and the applied understanding of the concept of Justice. Aesthetics is a study of the nature of the beautiful, for example, as contrasted with the merely pleasant in judgments of taste.

Until about 250 years ago all of what we now study and practice as the various empirical sciences were considered types of natural Philosophy, falling within the domain of Metaphysics or Epistemology. Science or Scientia simply means “knowledge,” which is part of what philosophers sought in their “love of wisdom” (philosophia). Beginning with Physics in the mid 1700s, then Chemistry and Biology in the 1800s, and finally Psychology in the early 1900s, the various sciences attempted to distinguish themselves from Philosophy. Yet, in fact, what had happened was that a certain type of metaphysics had become dominant in Physics, and ever since most other scientists have tacitly deferred to it.

For the last couple of centuries there has been an almost universal marginalization of work in the sciences that does not suit the metaphysical doctrine that there is only matter.

For the last couple of centuries there have been an almost universal marginalization and exclusion of work in the sciences that does not suit the metaphysical doctrine that there is only matter and that the smallest or most elementary constituents of matter interact with each other in a mechanical way. Yet this dominant metaphysics of the scientific establishment makes nonsense out of Ethics. This remains true even if many have tried to worm their way out of recognizing it. Some establishment scientists try to speak as if, from out of the gray matter of the brain and the various mechanical processes that make it function, there is an “emergence” of mind, including its ability to make choices that are sufficiently free that the individual making them can be held responsible for the actions that embody those choices. Yet mind as an “emergent property” is completely empty and superfluous rhetoric unless the mind that emerges can do things not reducible to the elementary particles or waves – or, these days, superstrings – that have none of the agency that is attributed to persons.

It is not true that Ethics does not make claims about the way that the world is. A world in which ethical or unethical action makes sense cannot be a world of nothing other than mechanistic causality acting on the microscopic material structures that make up everything in nature without remainder. Nor can it be a world wherein everything that we might do – or rather that we might misperceive ourselves as initiating – is already an event mapped out in a completed logical space accessible to the eternal mind of God, whose mind is capable of now surveying every possible future. Either of these possible futures collapse into a single predefined future, in which case we have no free will, or there are an infinity of parallel universes in which doppelgangers of ourselves live lives in many cases nearly identical to our own and in other cases somewhat more different, in which case none of these parallel selves are any more unique or uniquely responsible for the minutely different iterations of their actions than we are for ours in this one of many possible worlds.

I can well imagine traveling through a worm-hole into an alternate universe where I meet a counterpart of myself who has lived a very similar life, but has or has had somewhat different relationships with counterparts of people with whom I have or have had certain relationships. My presence in his life would change it and, once I traveled back through the worm-hole to my world, my encounter with him would make me reflect on and change the circumstances of my own life as well. Even if these lives were for all intents and purposes identical, the possibility of meeting my counterpart would allow each of us to act freely in reaction to the other – which, at that point, would cause the direction of our two lives, and of our two worlds, to significantly deviate from one another. Only in this case would each of us be metaphysically independent agents.

It is a question of novelty. I must be able, by my actions, to transform the world around me in such a way as it could never be transformed were it not for my decision to take those actions. Of course, this transformation need not always be according to my intention, and indeed if it always were exactly what I wanted, that might pose as great a psychological obstacle to a life worth living. It may be an extremely subtle and hardly noticeable transformation that I effect in the empirical world, and in the large and long view it probably always is. However, it must be possible to do something no one has done in just the way that I am contemplating doing it – not anyone in this world of mine, or anyone however like me in any other world that there might ever possibly be, or that there ever has been. Otherwise, I do nothing at all, and for that matter “I” have insufficient personal identity to really be anyone either. To be someone who makes his or her life what it alone uniquely is, and not the life of another, demands a non-reductionist view of consciousness, one wherein our minds are not ontologically derivative of some more elementary constituents.

In his last years, William James – who was the brother of a great story-teller – came close to seriously advocating such a view in connection to the problem of free will. In two sections on “Novelty and Causation” in Some Problems of Philosophy, James points out that the notion of “causation” primarily derives from our own experience of bringing things into being that we intuitively know could not otherwise have been. Our own acts of origination, our acts of creation, are the basis upon which we then only secondarily attribute causes to other beings in nature. To intellectually abstract “causation” from its primary meaning as an immediate experience of the agency of conscious willing beings such as ourselves, and to turn it into an impersonal universal principle, leads to an infinite regress wherein causes collapse into effects of other causes, without a first cause being found anywhere within the limits of possible experience. Without a first cause with a metaphysically irreducible explanatory power, all causality loses its necessary aspect.

It is worthy of note that the Greek root of the word “mathematical” is mathesis – which means “that which can be learned,” in other words that which is formulaically anticipatable. On the other hand, logos, the Greek root of the word “logic,” originally means “discourse” or even “story,” and its first philosophical use in reference to the constitution of the cosmos still retained this sense. That first use of the notion of “logic” – to refer to dynamically adaptable tactical rules on a cosmic scale – was by Heraclitus, who also called the cosmos “a child at play, moving pieces in a game.” It may be that any free will worth having requires the world to indeed be something like a story-teller’s tale – where fundamental ontology allows for the same logically “impossible” phantasmagoria characteristic of the vagueness of aesthetic imagination.

In the Second Manifesto of Surrealism that André Breton put out in 1929, he called for a “derangement of all the senses” directed toward this end, and for a revolt against centuries of “domestication” and “insane resignation” to an all-too-unimaginative conception of “reality.” Breton identifies a Kabbalistic concern with the power of language in the poetry of Arthur Rimbaud, but then criticizes Rimbaud for not going far enough – for not recognizing that the world is constituted by poetic logos, in other words that poetry literally has the power to transform the world. The alchemical Philosopher’s Stone becomes, for him, that which allows the “imagination to take a stunning revenge on all things,” to re-imagine the human reality.

Aesthetic judgment is no less arbitrary than the other domains of philosophical thought, and it is as integral to the task of being a philosopher as metaphysical, ethical, and political thought.

Jackson Pollock’s early paintings are an evolution directly out of Surrealism, and they continue the surrealist concern with alchemical or occult themes and motifs. If this were not obvious from the content of the paintings themselves, the titles he chose for them make this explicitly clear. Here are some of my personal favorites from this period: Male and Female (1942–1943); Guardians of the Secret (1943); Troubled Queen (1945); Alchemy (1947). There is also a related totemic quality and shamanic trend in this early work, for example: Bird (1941); Birth (1941); The She-Wolf (1943); Totem Lesson 2 (1945). Yet once he makes the transition to his fully abstract expressionist style, somehow the magical dimension remains and in a few pieces appears to be working its effect on the viewer at an ever deeper level; again, the titles that Pollock chose reflect his awareness of this: Lucifer (1947); Full Fathom Five (1947); One (1948). Pollock made a similar transition as Max Ernst did when he went from painting overtly alchemical pieces to creating paintings alchemically – even if they do not feature any explicitly discernible esoteric symbols. The nature of the magic at work in Pollock’s paintings has now been discovered, and it is far from any trickery – unless real conjuring of the kind practiced by a sorcerer is to be considered trickery.

Richard P. Taylor, a physicist at the University of New South Wales, who is also an abstract painter, discovered that there are fractals in Jackson Pollock’s abstract paintings at many different levels of magnification. He reports his findings in a piece titled “Order in Pollock’s Chaos,” which appeared in Scientific American (December, 2002). Taylor happened upon this discovery during a break from his work at the university to go on a retreat organized by the Manchester School of Art. However, a storm struck the Yorkshire moors in northern England and instead of simply being holed up indoors, Taylor recruited some fellow artists to build a contraption made of fallen branches with paint buckets attached to them that would harness the wind pattern and direct the paint onto an appropriately positioned canvas. What they found after the windstorm was astonishing: a Jackson Pollock painting. Taylor had an insight and went back to test it at the University, working with a group of experts in respective fields from mathematics and computer science to perceptual psychology.

It turns out that if quintessential Jackson Pollock paintings are scanned in to a computer and then overlaid with a grid that can be loosened or tightened in its level of magnification, a mathematical analysis of the drips on the canvas reveals that they conform precisely to the kind of fractals that are found in nature: in sea shells, in sunflowers, in tree branches, in weather patterns, and so forth. The difference between these fractals and those mechanically produced by a computer are that they display only a probabilistic statistical self-similarity that has an organic feel to it, rather than an exact self-similarity where the pattern breaks and repeats the same way at regular intervals. Moreover, these natural fractal patterns are discovered in Pollock’s paintings at many different levels of magnification, in other words – there are fractals within fractals within fractals. The smallest fractals found are 1,000 times smaller than the largest.

There is no way that Pollock could have planned this kind of painting, at that in the 1950s – decades before the scientific study of the fractals discovered by Benoit Mandelbrot. It is absolutely impossible for the rational mind and lies completely beyond the conscious or analytical perceptual capacity of human beings. Yet, Pollock once chose to epitomize his artwork with this statement: “My concern is with the rhythms of nature.” There is documentary evidence that he would dance around his canvas with movements that very closely resemble the ritual dances of Native American Shamanism, except more fluid and dynamic. He would also paint in bursts, over a long period of time – sometimes months. This would account for the many different layers of fractals. He would lay down only so many as he could while an unconscious force was still moving his body, then he would stop.

The best evidence that such an extraordinary process was at work is that only Jackson Pollock’s abstract paintings have these fractals in them. When other drip paintings in “the Pollock style,” including clever forgeries that might even fool some art critics, are scanned into the same computer program, they fail to yield the fractals in a genuine Pollock. Taylor theorized that the unique aesthetic experience of Pollock paintings, the reason why they are more widely appreciated than other works of abstract expressionism by people with a well-developed aesthetic intuition, is that the human mind is naturally keyed to respond to the beauty of fractals in nature.

This is as much as to say that aesthetic judgment is no less arbitrary than the other domains of philosophical thought, and it is as integral to the task of being a philosopher as metaphysical, ethical, and political thought. In fact, understanding the nature of genuine creativity is inextricable from fathoming the kind of metaphysical structure at work in nature that makes ethical and political concepts such as “Justice” and “Right” meaningful in the first place. The art of being an authentic philosopher demands creative and integral thought in all of these domains, free from the constraints of ossified traditions and the tyrannical dictates of unconscious masses in any and every society. Such independent individuals are the true lovers of Sophia – brothers across the ages, and into the distant future, into the lighthouses of a galactic Alexandria. From Zarathustra onwards, all are flames of the same undying cosmic fire and the glowing forges of futures past. The philosopher’s task is that daring, but providentially favored endeavor (annuit coeptis) of working to bring forth a new order of the ages (novus ordo seclorum).

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A Critique of the Groypers https://arktos.com/2019/11/26/a-critique-of-the-groypers/ https://arktos.com/2019/11/26/a-critique-of-the-groypers/#view_comments Tue, 26 Nov 2019 13:56:18 +0000 https://arktos.com/?p=7785 When Dave Reilly of Culture Wars Magazine asked Charlie Kirk about the relationship between the US and Israel,1 he was met with unsurprising contempt and name-calling. What was surprising however, was the fact that he and others continued to press the social issues that conservatives have failed to question: homosexuality, Zionism, and immigration. As well, the appearance was striking; rosaries, suits, and MAGA hats – all worn by teens who looked fresh out of high school. These were the same zoomers (Gen Z), who, months earlier, had been channelling the nostalgia for Pepe the Frog and 2016 with the creation of the Groyper.2 The digital troll movement became physical in late October, and still the conservative movement has no way of understanding them, let alone answering their questions.

The Groypers are young, white, and energetic – a sign of life on what remains of the American Right.

From the appearance of the Groypers (MAGA hats and rosaries) and the questions they asked, one is able surmise their philosophy: Catholicism, Trumpism, Americanism and nationalism. There is as well a conspicuous streak of romanticism that energizes the Groypers. For example, Vincent James has plainly stated (via Instagram)3 that he longs for the days through which he did not live: ethnic neighbourhoods and intact families, and Bishop Fulton Sheen dominating the ratings in television. While I share his sentiments, it is important a.) to understand the material preconditions necessary for such ‘good ol’ days’, and b.) to therefore question one’s conventional assumptions in order to advance a greater ideology. This is the purpose of this article: to evaluate the philosophy and identity of the Groypers.

Intergenerational Politics

The Groypers are young, white, and energetic – a sign of life on what remains of the American Right. A group that thrives on schadenfreude, they look to their millennial brethren in a way similar to how Generation X sees the boomers. The Groyper contingent of Generation Z views millennials – for the most part – as the people who have taken the propaganda hook, line and sinker. This is not to say that the zoomers have not taken any propaganda, but they stand much closer to the child drag shows4 and other such degeneracy, and they seem to be more polarized than their millennial predecessors. Their predecessors were schooled on the abuses of Nazi Germany and the Jim Crow South. From their education regarding MLK and Hitler, they (and more importantly their parents) accepted the social engineering in good faith. Of course, the social engineering was kicked into high gear after the Obergefell v. Hodges ruling. The bourgeois teaching that once had been about equality became about equity, which felt like betrayal to many (whites). This feeling of betrayal led many to begin questioning their entire situation.

Another difference between the millennials and zoomers seems to be their internet use, which woke the latter more than the former from their slumber, when they began listening to a number of people on YouTube discussing demographic changes and its consequences. The zoomers are growing up being told about the evils of ‘whiteness’, patriarchy and privilege. While lectured about it, and made to feel guilty for it, they had no choice but to rebel against it. Millennials did not grow up – until they were already in their college days – being explicitly told that whiteness was a problem, but they implicitly understood the evils of colonialism and the virtues of all marginalized peoples. Zoomers understand that whites are the modern kulaks – the group you’re allowed to hate and disparage. Millennials idolize the sixties revolutionaries as models to emulate, while Zoomers are either apathetic toward or contemptuous of those days and people. The youth of the Groypers is key in their philosophy and in their rebellious attitude toward Conservatism Inc.

Catholicism and Americanism

With the youth of the Groypers comes their nostalgia, with which in turn comes their religiosity. The Catholicism of the Groypers, as seen in figures like Nick Fuentes, Vincent James, and their greatest thought leader E. Michael Jones, is the most important influence on their neo-paleoconservatism. First, we should address the Catholic Church of today as an institution that hardly resembles conservatism, let alone the ideal religion of the Holy Roman Empire. Preceding the Groyper movement was the Amazon Synod in Rome. At the Synod there were discussions of the horrors of Catholic colonialism, genuflections toward pre-Christian life in the Amazon, talks of married clergy – restricted for certain types – and prayers with pagan idols,5 which is not a first occurrence6 for the Latin Church. In short, the Church has never been more divided,7 and never weaker.

America – whether it was intended as such or not – has become this malleable, melting-pot, blank-slate, proposition nation.

The division in the Catholic Church is best represented by the left-right split that should be transcended in Christ. Groypers speak of ‘America First’, and call on the spirit of Fr. Charles Coughlin, who advocated against US intervention in WWII – and, funnily enough, for social justice. The problem is that the Catholic Church is ‘America First’, not in the sense of Fr. Coughlin, but in the sense of Fr. James Martin S.J. America is the epicentre of the revolution, and the revolution today is based on two things: free love and free markets. The latter cannot be questioned because anyone who wants any restrictions on the free flow of capital (and labour) must be a communist-luddite-Neanderthal. Free love cannot be questioned lest we disturb the sacrosanct choice of the individual. Fr. James Martin S.J. has empathy for the homosexual (likely because he is one), which is in accordance with his Christianity. However, he has no right whatsoever, according to his own faith, to subvert the teachings of the Church. In short, being ‘America First’ is not the ignorant-but-masculine ‘muh freedoms’, ‘muh Second Amendment’ worldview; it is rather mammon and sterile sex.

Let us understand this: no institution can be wedded to the American Empire without being subdued by it. The fact is that during the Cold War, the Church got into bed with America in order to fight communism, which is ironic, considering that liberation theology once deeply penetrated (mainly) the South American Church. America – whether it was intended as such or not – has become this malleable, melting-pot, blank-slate, proposition nation, a nation where a Somali is just as American as the ancestors of Washington or Jefferson. America is Israel Zangwill’s caricature of America, as portrayed in his 1908 play The Melting Pot. The Groypers, if they value a coherent philosophy, should not partake in Americanism, because Americanism is the source of all they detest: homosexual rights, usury, and interventionism.

Trumpism, Capitalism and Nationalism

The most upsetting bit of the Groyper aesthetic is the fact that they still wear the MAGA hats and support Trump. One imagines that the support for Trump is a fraction of what it was in 2016, but nonetheless carrying water for someone who is actionably opposed to your ideas is ludicrous. At least the Groypers all have this in common: they represent two figureheads that actively oppose them and their traditionalism in Pope Francis and Donald Trump.

No institution can be wedded to the American Empire without being subdued by it.

While the Groypers should reject Trump – and, I would argue, should even burn their MAGA hats outside of these TPUSA events – they should also reject a key component of Trumpism and Americanism: capitalism. First, capitalism has never been the standard economic policy of the Catholic Church, and historically the Church has viewed the marketization of things with indifference if not hostility. Second, capitalism is the very system which allows for mobility of labour, resulting in displacement and atomization. As a result of this second point, nationalism and capitalism are simply incompatible; borders are an obstacle for the capitalist to freely move capital and labour.

In sum, I deny the Groypers’ nationalism on the basis that there have (since Rome) been unipolar or multipolar hegemon(s), i.e. China, Russia, or Britain. I deny their Americanism, because it is a malleable ideology hostile to their nationalism and to any sense of traditionalism. I deny their admiration for Trump, that stellar candidate and failed president who duped them in 2016 and will dupe them again next year. I reject their Roman Catholicism, which amounts to adherence to an institution plagued by left-wing and right-wing factions. I affirm their trolling and I laugh with them at the destruction of the conservative movement – especially when it comes to figures like Kirk, Donald Trump Jr., and Congressman Dan AIPATCH. Again, I make this article not merely to critique them, but also to aid them, because every ideology needs a solid foundation. Deconstruction for its own sake is subversive; let it be clear that I intend no such thing. I wish them the best in their destruction of the conservative movement, though it should not be destroyed just to be repeated.

References

2Groyper’, Urban Dictionary.

4Alexandra Kacala, ‘‘Drag Kids’ Are Slaying the Runway — One ‘Fierce’ Look at a Time’, NBC News, October 9 2018. Accessed 26 November 2019.

7Six Cardinals and Bishops Who Condemned Pagan ‘Pachamama’ Rituals at Vatican’, Life Site News, 30 October, 2019. Accessed 26 November 2019.

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A Brief Critique of Cosmopolitanism – Part 2 https://arktos.com/2019/11/22/a-brief-critique-of-cosmopolitanism-part-2/ https://arktos.com/2019/11/22/a-brief-critique-of-cosmopolitanism-part-2/#view_comments Fri, 22 Nov 2019 15:30:52 +0000 https://arktos.com/?p=7774 The fundamental and necessary presupposition of cosmopolitanism, no matter what kinds of ethical or political or epistemological relativisms it appears to adopt or affirm, is the moral and practical superiority of the cosmopolitan ideology over every other worldview, and the consequent desire to realize cosmopolitanism as a concrete political reality. But cosmopolitanism, for reasons we have touched upon in the first part of this essay and at greater length in the aforementioned essay on the open society, is unique among ‘ideologies’ in not only abstractly desiring a homogeneous world state, as communism did for instance, but in absolutely requiring one for its full and proper establishment. Without a single world government, cosmopolitanism is beset by insurmountable difficulties in its implementation; and without cosmopolitanism, the single world state necessarily takes on the aspect of an intolerable dictatorial order. The ideology of cosmopolitanism and the ideal of a single world government are complementary and mutually reinforcing.

The ideology of cosmopolitanism and the ideal of a single world government are complementary and mutually reinforcing.

We closed the first half of this essay with the question of the degree to which an authentically free man could or should desire the establishment of such a world state. It goes almost without saying that the goal of establishing such a state is happily presupposed by the better part of today’s so-called ‘liberalism’; even where ‘liberalism’ appears to qualify this aim (by speaking for instance of global federalisms or world governing organizations in the place of world government per se) it sneaks the homogeneous world state into its final political philosophy in one form or another. The ‘end of history’ is meaningless in the absence of universal ‘liberal’ order, and this order is understood to be desirable, not to speak of tolerable, on account of its perfection of the Enlightenment ideals of freedom and equality and its ability to marry these two political ends in a socio-political order spanning the entirety of the globe.

The homogeneous world state defends its viability via cosmopolitanism. Its superiority to every other form of government is presumed to reside in its being the single social order to avoid any definite pronouncement on the good or the evil of human ways, and the consequent liberation of human beings to live as they please; it is the single social order to permit any and all human ways, and thus the single universal, as opposed to particularistic, social order. Its quality is to be discovered in its breadth, its largeness. It is the only truly universal view available to man from the political perspective. It attains this marvellous result through its primary virtue of tolerance, which virtue permits to all human beings the liberty to do as they list and to live as they will.

So much for the claims made by cosmopolitan ideals on their own behalf. In point of fact, no cosmopolitan state, no open society, no liberal regime can function save as all or the great majority of its members adhere to the principles which make such a state possible. All or almost all of the citizens of the world village must be tolerant, for in the lack of this basic condition, democratic processes can easily be made to turn against the liberal order, instating illiberal orders of a variety of kinds and leading directly to the collapse or even overthrow of the cosmopolitan order. But the values promoted by the ‘virtue of tolerance’ are not universal values; they are values which attach to a single ideology alone of all the ideologies, worldviews, philosophies or outlooks available to a human being: they are precisely and specifically cosmopolitan values. Cosmopolitanism feigns universality and bases its tremendous social and political demands on this quality; but in the final analysis, it is evident that cosmopolitanism, like every other proposed human regime, is in fact a closed and narrow order, replete with its own limited and limiting ideas about how a man ought to live, behave and think; it is furthermore evident that it, no less than any other human regime, will enforce its values through a variety of more or less evident means, and will suppress or oppose any views, ideas, or movements that might threaten it even intellectually. But then the cosmopolitan global state proves to be a particularistic regime, and not a universal regime, per its claim. It therefore does not suffice to defend cosmopolitanism on the basis of its ‘openness’; if it is to be defended, it must be defended on the basis of its points of superiority over other possible regimes.

Any open-eyed man is therefore compelled to submit cosmopolitanism to the same rigorous critique to which one would submit any ideological proposal for world government. Such analysis can only come through the comparison of cosmopolitanism with the real and actualizable alternatives to cosmopolitanism. But it is precisely these which cosmopolitanism, more than almost any other modern ideology, renders invisible and inaccessible.

Take Europe as an example of this. It was once the case that Europe was composed of a rich and variegated medley of societies, which, though they shared certain common traits when compared to the great South or East or Middle East, nonetheless were characterized by fundamental incompatibilities as well, of such depth and number that Europe has almost without stint been at war with itself in some form or another since the very earliest moments of its recorded history. But beyond the strife which such differences fomented, they also provided the possibility for a breadth of view which was available in few other parts of the globe. There is a sound reason that a European tour was once considered essential part of the education of European gentlemen, for instance – practice to which an older and finer generation of Americans also once clove: by experiencing the diversity of European orders and ways, the perspective of the future governors might be widened accordingly, and these leaders would therefore be in a finer position both to appreciate, but also to critique, their birthland.

This possibility no longer exists, or at least has been refined to the point of vanishing. It has vanished in Europe on account of the universal adoption in European states, both on the political level and on the social and private level, of liberal beliefs and mores – process which has been exacerbated, though in no way caused, by the advent of the European Union. To travel from one corner of Europe to another today certainly gives one a satisfying survey of its geographical, linguistic and (at least in historical districts) architectural diversity; but one is liable to find a remarkable unity of opinion on the fundamental political things which one would never have found even remotely so thoroughly implanted in past times, the recent phenomenon of ‘populism’ notwithstanding.1 Laying aside the distant promise which might be contained in this ‘European levelling’, Europe today runs the risk of becoming every bit as closed and provincial as the United States and Canada, whose members, for a mere geographical accident, have almost no access whatsoever to any kind of really foreign reality, if not in Mexico. On account of the largeness of their territory and their lack of really distinctly different neighbours, the citizens of the great North American Anglo-Saxon states easily fall prey to a fundamental error of perspective, by which they are persuaded that their special way of viewing things must be universal to the whole of the race. This has played no small part in the adventurousness of the United States abroad, particularly in its programme of worldwide ‘regime change’; Americans in many cases simply cannot fathom that there might be human beings, indeed entire societies in the world, that would consciously disclaim democracy and detest the pedestrian kind of legalistic liberties which Americans so easily confound for human freedom. Europe will not be saved from this democratic fate by the variety of languages which compose it; indeed, this would be nothing more than another temptation to succumb to such a narrow outlook.

These are but illustrative cases of the inevitable effects of cosmopolitanism, wherever it becomes the attitude of the mass. Cosmopolitanism, for reasons we have suggested, has a dangerous ability, which all other kinds of statefare have so far lacked, to shutter the minds of its citizens and simultaneously to convince them of their unique open-mindedness. It is true, for instance, that men in many nations have been raised to take pride in their very prejudices and closures: but cosmopolitanism alone is able to imbue a man with such blinding pride together with the delusion that he is a paradigm of receptivity and tolerance. As but an example of this difference, the most zealous Crusader of the most zealous eras of Christendom had a tenfold clearer vision of the real nature of Islam and its adherents than does the cosmopolitan urbanite today; the conflict and opposition which characterized the relations of the Crusader to the Muslim impelled him to an in many ways intimate understanding of his foe, which understanding, while for obvious reasons had to remain incomplete, nonetheless far outstrips the shallow and utterly hollow notion which a contemporary liberal entertains of the Muslim as being representative of a simple brotherly ‘culture’ which is fundamentally equal, compatible to, and even interchangeable with all other ‘cultures’.

This blindness exists among us even today, and encroaches upon us all the more rapidly with each passing year; how much the greater then would be its power over men if it were permitted to become the single ruling order of all the world?

Philosophy, that peculiarly Western discipline, first emerged in the wake of the emergence of history, taking this word in its original acceptation, as an investigation or an inquiry. This history was first carried out by men who were given to travelling – voyagers who sojourned in foreign lands and spoke to the inhabitants thereof, and brought back with them the stories of wildly different religions, practices, viewpoints and customs. These reports blew open the natural parochialism of Greek city-states, even that native to Hellas herself, and forced the question of why human ways should differ so dramatically from place to place, and how these differences were to be interpreted – whether as the right customs to radically incompatible types of beings, for instance, or as partial and fragmentary views of the full and just order of human beings as such. But this in turn brought thinking men to a point of view from which they might critique also the limitations in their own political orders; it marked the advent of political philosophy. The homogeneous world state would eradicate this potential by establishing in the place of the present rich and beautiful variety of human ways a single dogmatic and monolithic state, a true ‘global village’ which would force human beings back into the essential ignorance of tribal existence, even while infusing them with the delusion that they had never been so open to the truth.

Cosmopolitanism has a dangerous ability, which all other kinds of statefare have so far lacked, to shutter the minds of its citizens and simultaneously to convince them of their unique open-mindedness.

To men in such conditions, travel would avail naught; real conversation with ‘foreigners’ would be rendered, not only practically impossible, but illusory, by the very eradication of the fundamental difference standing between what is domestic and what is foreign. A man in such a state could travel the width and breadth of the world and return to his starting point none the wiser for all his experience, and every bit as slavish as when he had departed. Indeed, examples of such somnambulistic travellers are common enough already in our own times, in which there still exists at least some potential to break out and to see totally different societies, even within Europe itself if one knows where to go and how to go about it; how much the moreso then would the global cosmopolitan order be subject to such suffocating constraints? This ‘freest’ society of all societies, which indeed makes a cult of ‘freedom’ as no society before it, would be revealed as naught but a prison whose dimensions are coeval with those of the globe itself.

Men, to liberate themselves of the global village, would have but a single recourse remaining them: and that would be the study of the past, of human history, of the radically alternative ideas of the ancients and the tales which have come down to them of previous ‘unfree’ human societies. History once more would provide the doorway into philosophy – only this time, history understood in a much more modern sense. But the availability of this history would in its turn depend on a variety of factors which are far from being given. In the first place, it would require a capacity within the cosmopolitan soul, a kind of faculty for ‘voyaging through time’ – something analogous if not identical to what has been called the ‘historical sense’. For it is the easiest thing in the world to contemn the past for being past, particularly if one lives at the ‘end of history’. A man who would free himself would then have to bring with him into his studies a keen and even unusual capacity to acquire a feeling for past eras, an ability, not only to put himself into the shoes of past humanity, but even to at least momentarily embody in his own being these past ways of seeing and sensing the world. He would have to possess a great fantasy, and more than that a will to forget the present and to let the past infuse him, if only for a a moment, an hour, a day. All of these traits, while they can to some extent at least be cultivated, are far from common even in our own time, which still to some extent cultivates the old nineteenth-century pride in ‘historical sense’. Modernity even now likes to preen itself on its unparalleled knowledge of history. How much the rarer would these gifts become then in a society which would no longer see any real purpose in truly comprehending the past, convinced as it would be that that past had been definitively ‘left behind’, ‘overcome’, ‘consummated’?

It is the easiest thing in the world to contemn the past for being past, particularly if one lives at the ‘end of history’.

If this were the single danger, of course, it would represent only a qualified difficulty, albeit a very grave one; for a man of sufficient individuality and courage could potentially wrench free even of such strong spider webs as these. The much more decisive problem however lies a bit deeper still. Any society which believes that it not only represents but consummates the ‘end of history’ necessarily takes history as its central concern, but history understood in a new and totally negative sense: history as the sum total of what has been surpassed and overcome, history as the mass of error, superstition, warfare, and needless want, squalor, suffering and hardship lying (scientific and economic progress be thanked) behind us. Such a society must possess an adversarial attitude in the face of history, and this is a germ from which easily may spread a pandemic: the infection, that is to say, of suspicion of the past, hostility toward the past, hatred for the past. Such phenomena are not unusual even in our own time; it is totally unnecessary to list here the many slurs which have been invented in modern times – no small number even in recent years – to slander entire epochs and eras of our history, nor the clear manifestation of an antihistorical attitude in such episodes as the tearing down of statues or the rewriting of history books in a new and ‘politically correct’ fashion.

Equally, the ‘end of history’ makes for a deep mistrust of the future; on the fundamental level, nothing can be improved in a society which has culminated history; at most, all that remains to it is the final elaboration of its system, a kind of rounding off and polishing of what has already been attained. The cosmopolitan world order would thus prove itself to be an emphatically ‘conservative’ order, not insofar as it wishes to put the brakes on the mercurial technological or social shifting of its society, but rather insofar as it would be fundamentally and dogmatically closed to any principles, values, philosophies or ideas that stand contrary to it. It would see in all such, not the expression of human individuality or freedom, as it likes to claim in our day, but rather the menace of retrogression and backsliding; for the necessary conclusion to be drawn from the very idea of the ‘end of history’ is that the best social order has been attained, which means necessarily that all alternative social orders represent the inferior, the past, the outdated and overcome. The cosmopolitan world order could not help therefore but see in all contending ideas, all non-cosmopolitan critiques of the social order, all suggested or hypothesized foils to cosmopolitan lifestyles and viewpoints – it cannot help but see in everything which even slightly opposes it sign of ignorance, stupidity, or wanton and stubborn irrationality. What then could possibly compel a cosmopolitan world order to resist the temptation of using its gargantuan and unchallenged political power, its almost universal social support and accord, and its wondrous technological advancements to absolutely crush and undermine the residual signs of even intellectual opposition to its continued existence?

Such a cosmopolitan despotism is still held in check in our time by the fact that tradition has yet to be totally uprooted and the ‘open society’ has yet to be fully implemented; there is still a great mass of people in the lands of the West who possess at least a vestigial reverence for the past and who are not willing to lightly give up the little that remains of memory in our day. But in a homogeneous world state, particularly one of any duration, who could hope that these conservative elements would or could continue to hold the line against the deep corrosion and rot of cosmopolitan antihistoricism? Who or what could finally stop the single world state from establishing a parallel universal system of mandatory ‘education’ or standards for ‘entertainment’, for instance, which, far from training men in the liberal arts, would rather seek to shamelessly (indeed, righteously) inculcate them into the narrow cosmopolitan perspective, as if it were the one and only valid human perspective? Who could stop it from truly bringing the ‘end of history’ – by murdering the same?

The battle for the future is waged ever on the grounds of the past: the revolutionary fervour so characteristic of modern times is every bit as much a desire to forget as a will to change. Cosmopolitanism, that seemingly widest and most magnanimous of all possible human perspectives, is nothing but the wretched glance out of a mere nook and cranny, a squinting view that intentionally blocks out and wilfully ignores the better part of the world in order to provide a safe space for its own crippled notions. In making men equal it would make them equally slaves; in rendering them nationless it would make them perhaps irredeemably fragmentary. By making the world one it would eliminate the very preconditions for a true shift in perspective, and in concluding history, it would transform the past into a grave. Whatever else he might be, the ‘world citizen’ is no longer even a rudimentary human being; he is certainly worlds away from being the consummation and elevation of the same.

References

1The nearest one might have come to this was the unity reigning in the time of Christendom; yet while this certainly formed a kind of fundamental European religious unity, it was ever qualified on the one hand by the aforementioned variety of European countries, dynasties, cities, peoples etc., and on the other by the existence of the Muslims as an indispensable ‘other’, whose opposition demonstrated with clarity both the physical and ideological boundaries of Christianity. What is peculiar to cosmopolitanism, as we have already noted, is its ability to convince a man that such boundaries do not exist in any but the most imaginary sense.

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A Brief Critique of Cosmopolitanism – Part 1 https://arktos.com/2019/11/20/a-brief-critique-of-cosmopolitanism-part-1/ https://arktos.com/2019/11/20/a-brief-critique-of-cosmopolitanism-part-1/#view_comments Wed, 20 Nov 2019 14:35:57 +0000 https://arktos.com/?p=7748 Cosmopolitanism, as a doctrine not only of individual ethics but of the order of the state, has rightly been critiqued from a wide variety of angles. Its invidious erasure of human differences and cultural richness, its implicit contempt for both tradition and for the natural and native ways of human societies, its dangerous extension of the condition of specific individuals (the ‘artist’, the ‘philosopher’, the ‘homme du monde’) to the generality of humanity and human societies, all contribute to making this one of the most deleterious doctrines of our time.

The cosmopolitan’s unshakable belief in his own openness forms a protective barrier against all really new or radically old ideas; he is surrounded infallibly by a kind of glowing haze which easily blinds him.

The author himself has contributed to the work of critiquing this notion in several places, and in one essay in particular has striven to show how cosmopolitanism, under the guise of the so-called ‘open society’, is in fact an inevitable recipe for universal dictatorship.1 The present essay restricts itself to considering a more limited, but not for that less important, final consequence of cosmopolitanism.

Before coming to that, however, a word on the idea of cosmopolitanism itself. It, like practically every contemporary notion of political or ‘social’ philosophy, is susceptible to a variety of interpretations and proposed meanings. Some of its practitioners or theoreticians like to look for ancient philosophical antecedents to it, particularly in the Ancient Greeks; they are aided in this by the fact that the word itself stems from the Greek, and was evidently first used by Diogenes the Cynic in description of himself – a likely story, from which, however, one should not be tempted to draw too many stringent conclusions.2 In the present day it is used in a variety of senses and contexts, and by a variety of philosophical stances. We recur therefore to the most basic sense of the word as it is presently in use today: it means to suggest the ideal of the ‘citizen of the world’ as a generally attainable human ideal.

The ‘citizen of the world’, though necessarily born in a single geographical location and raised to a single set of mores, languages and customs, has learned the inherent limits of locality and has consequently come to transcend them in his personal attitude and beliefs. He sees most immediately, not the unique texture and special charm of his native people or hometown or nation, but rather their parochialism and blindness, and he tacitly if not explicitly denies the possibility that such quaint customs might be deeply and secretly connected to the wellspring of a primordial wisdom tradition. His view represents therefore a break with history. He shuns the dogmas of his grandsires, no longer holds to their ways or manners, and reveals this mundane rebellion in the totally generic, workaday clothing he likes to sport and in his tending lack of clear gender. He makes a cult of ‘travel’ for travel’s sake, seduced by the movement of it and by the (generally unwarranted) aura of worldliness that it grants him. If he is not a polyglot, competent in a number of widely spoken languages, then he is at least fluent in English, the lingua franca of our day, which permits him some degree of communication wheresoever in the world he may go. He is characterized by liberal attitudes, for these alone, he understands, grant a man that magnanimous and tolerant breadth of opinion in which he perceives the watermark of an educated and humanistic individual. He looks benevolently on all the ways of the world except those which are restrictive, censorious, violent, closed and intolerant. These traits, however, are characteristic of practically every worldview other than his own; this tension forms a sensitive point upon his personal views, marking an evident contradiction within his worldview which threatens ever to leap out and strike at him. He avoids contemplating this dangerous issue by means of a singular talent at mindlessly adopting and repeating pleasant, if utterly false, platitudes, and a keen knack for what might be called ‘bromidal logic’, by which stern reasoning, loftiness of thought and obedience to the intellectual conscience are all replaced with ‘positive thinking’.

He nonetheless fancies himself a free thinker, and quite naturally and instinctively posits himself as the end and culmination of history. This attitude deeply informs him, quite despite the personal humility he probably likes to feign, which might even be marked in him to the point of becoming quite irksome; the average cosmopolitan would never dare to express his sense of historical superiority in any but the most generic sense (speaking, that is, of ‘technology’ and ‘great strides’, ‘evolution’ and ‘progress’, etc.), but it is evident that this sense of superiority colours his entire outlook, as can be easily attested in the tone of easy condescension he takes when speaking of even yesterday, not to speak of his shocking lack of curiosity regarding the depths of our human past. For unless he personally feels some special affinity for historical studies (generally on account of some personal feature of his, such as an unusually fine memory or the vain delight in knowing what others do not know or of passing judgement on the children of yesteryear), he is liable to be ignorant of ‘history’ to an extent unheard of in the supposedly ‘educated’ classes of any time or any nation of any epoch or place in the West. His fundamental and unshakable belief in his own openness, tolerance, freedom etc. forms a protective barrier against all really new or radically old ideas; he is surrounded infallibly by a kind of glowing haze, a mist infused with light, which easily blinds him and persuades him that he gazes ever upon the splendid face of reality itself. All societies have their special lies and restrictions, their closures and their limitations; the cave, as Plato taught, is inherent to human society as such. But the cosmopolitan is characterized precisely by this: in believing that he alone of all historical men has by his very birth escaped from the cave, he carries his own cave turtle-like with him everywhere he goes, as his own and most personal raiment; it lies so near to him and so heavy upon his back, that he could no longer twist his head to rightly perceive it even if he tried. The depth of his own parochialism, closure and dogmatism is to be measured in the fact that he naturally and unhesitatingly supposes that any educated man he encounters will think and judge the world precisely like him, implicitly sharing his vision and his general outlook; and he will go so far as to immediately speak to such a man in the tones of comfortable confidence regarding the latest political questions and affairs of the day, never so much as suspecting that there might be anything offensively familiar and presumptuous in this attitude. Should his presupposition prove false – should his educated interlocutor dare, in his turn, to express ideas that are not drawn from the tepid well of contemporary ‘liberal’ opinions – our good cosmopolitan will remain amazed by the fact, and, supposing he does not retract from the conversation at once like a man stung by a viper, will certainly utter some revelatory remark to the effect that he never would have expected such objectionable views to exist in the mind of a man who is otherwise so enlightened.

There is nothing strange in believing in the superiority of one’s society; but only the cosmopolitan is deluded enough to believe at once in the superiority of cosmopolitan society, and in its essential compatibility with every other kind of human society.

We have drawn this portrait of the cosmopolitan – creature who represents far less any Diogenesian kind of cosmopolitanism, than the decline, vulgar generalization and retrogression of the same – not certainly in order to convince him of his limitations; for, as noted, he is armoured against all critics with a marvellously thick intellectual (though not emotional – to the contrary!) skin. We paint this portrait rather because cosmopolitanism in miniature, in the life of the unreflective cosmopolite, is liable to parallel and reflect cosmopolitanism in the macro, on the level of society. The cosmopolitan society shows the same kind of naive and ingenuous closure, the same kind of internally self-defeating intolerant tolerance, the same kind of automatic if halfway-ashamed supposition of its own superiority, combined with an unprecedented protective shielding against the perception of its real limitations, as the cosmopolitan individual. To be sure, all societies, or all healthy societies, presuppose their innate superiority, their right to exist and to have a ‘place in the sun’; but it is characteristic of the cosmopolitan society particularly that its supposition of its superiority is combined with a connate inability to see the ways in which its peculiar outlook clashes with all other worldviews. This contradiction cannot help but raise its head in any number of neuroses encountered in these societies, which now and then, despite their iron-clad faith in their ‘liberal’ ways, break out into the most remarkable displays of mass self-loathing. And indeed, even their most cherished beliefs conceal something of this self-hatred, this subtle and secret will to immolate oneself on the alter of humanity. Hence the delusion of ‘multiculturalism’ and the stunningly ingenuous cosmopolitan belief that conflict in the world can be suppressed by mere adherence to the virtue of ‘tolerance’. No, there is nothing strange in believing in the superiority of one’s society; but only the cosmopolitan is deluded enough to believe at once in the superiority of cosmopolitan society, and in its essential compatibility with every other kind of human society.3

The cosmopolitan attitude, so far as the cosmopolitan himself is concerned, is incompatible with one thing and one thing only: and that is, ‘closed borders’. The cosmopolitan cannot countenance the division of peoples into tribes, clans or nations. This strikes against the very presupposition of his worldview, which purports to consider the human being qua ‘human being’, rather than considering the human being as the natural expression and manifestation of this or that unique race, culture or society. As has been discussed by many clear-sighted commentators, the idea of a ‘human being’ as such, totally detached from any and all peculiar customs and ethe, naturally results in a kind of skeletal view of man – a humanoid automaton, defleshed and disembodied, denatured and deracinated, who can be rightly measured by his ‘choices’ and his ‘merit’ alone; and since ‘choice’ and ‘merit’ in turn cannot be judged, according to the cosmopolitan view, from any particular morality or religion, from fear of thereby succumbing once more to the old individual customs and cultures of peoples and fatherlands, they must be understood in economic terms, in what a man purchases, in what a man earns for his work and for his ingenuity, in what job a man professes and what abstracted social role he plays in consequence. The cosmopolitan ideal thus naturally generates a conception of the human being as Homo oeconomicus, and is in turn strictly connected with the rather curious obsession of all globalist and cosmopolitan theoreticians with human movement. This obsession has gone indeed to such a point that a new word has been invented for it – a truly garish neologism in a sea of offensive linguistic novelties: ‘mobility’. The cosmopolitan, supposing he is only au courant with the going academese, will speak with pride about his society’s ‘mobilities’, or the ‘mobilities’ which are now permitted in the European Union – the ‘transversal mobilities’ of human beings, goods and ideas across borders, the ‘vertical mobilities’ of workers or wealth or status from one rank or class to another. The connections of this idea with the contemporary notion of ‘democracy’ are so evident as to warrant no comment here. We focus rather on the necessary conclusions which any man must reach, who holds to the intrinsic value of these things.

A world in which a human being is defined exclusively in terms universalizable to the entirety of humanity is necessarily a world in which the borders standing between nations are to be slowly eroded and finally abolished, in which human beings are to be permitted and encouraged in the greatest possible freedom of movement – fact which itself suggests a great deal regarding the despiritualized and thoroughly materialistic nature of this view – and in which the one thing that will no longer be tolerated is intolerance. The exemplary concrete representation of intolerance on the level of law and politics is the watchtower, the border control and the border patrol, and above all the fence and the wall; such objects become then central symbols in the metapolitical struggle between cosmopolitanism and nationalism. Cosmopolitanism ideally would eliminate not only these physical traces of ‘intolerance’ themselves, but also the very need for them. The former is a relatively easy task; the latter is of much more moment, and leads us to the question we would like most closely to address in the present essay.

The elimination of the need for borders necessarily requires the production a kind of humanity and a kind of society for which borders are no longer necessary. None but the most naive and ignorant of the globalists would dare call for an immediate obliteration of national boundaries and the instantaneous and precipitous melding of all the world’s nations; the globalists who are presently at the helm of current events recognize that a deal of work must be done before this end can be fully achieved. But this is the end toward which they all of them are striving: they urgently crave the global society, the ‘global village’, as it is quaintly, but nonetheless significantly, called.

A village is a tightly knit human community which is marked in particular by harmony, well-established social roles and a homogeneity of mores, phenotype and of opinions. Inherent to the idea of a ‘global village’ is therefore the insight that humanity can be unified under the rule of a single society only insofar as the deep and decisive, indeed the characteristic, differences which separate human beings have been eroded or eradicated. These differences include the religious (hence the global village would require a universal de facto secularism which steals from every faith the dignity of being a holistic, and therefore political and social, standard for man), the racial (hence the global village would require the merging, interbreeding and final integration of all the world’s peoples and types), the economic (hence the global village would require the ‘elimination of poverty’ through welfare, healthcare, universal income, etc. and the generalization of the middle class to all of humanity – excepting, of course, the ‘meritorious’ rich), the customary (hence the global village would require a uniformity of human ways and an elimination of the deep divisions between the same, rendering all differences superficial and harmless, a mere matter of dress and affectation), and the ethical (hence the global village would establish a single morality for all men which, while permitting unusual breadth of action in what was once considered the realm of vice, would for the same reason decisively shut off the realm of what was once considered virtue, essentially inverting the older ethics).

A truly liberal man, in the original sense of this expression as a ‘free man’ or a man trained in the liberal arts, could embrace the universalization of a single worldview to all of humanity under one of two conditions alone: either if this worldview were the true worldview, and hence proved the right to reign over the whole of humanity; or else if it were a uniquely liberating worldview, which provided the human being with the maximal freedom to seek the truth or to attain to virtuous ends. Else the free man or the man desirous of freedom will be the first to oppose the advent of any ‘universal’ society, recognizing it for what it is beneath all its wiles and guiles: tyranny beneath the suave and mendacious mask of an utterly false ‘liberty’.

References

1See ‘The Open Society and Its Enemies’, Arktos Journal, 6 December 2018.

2In the first place, Diogenes was a great trickster and clearly had an acerbic kind of wit, which should make any man wary of noddingly accepting his reported pronouncements in universal key. But even supposing that Diogenes meant this self-description in perfect earnest, it remains a question of the first order (to any non-democratic thinker) if a virtue or a quality fit for a philosopher like Diogenes could or should be generalized to the whole mass of humanity. Let it be recalled that the Greek meaning of the term is not at all ‘citizen of the world’, as it is currently taken to mean, but rather ‘citizen of the cosmos’, of the ordered whole. The citizen of the cosmos is necessarily something more than the citizen of this or any state: Diogenes was not making a claim about the just political order fit for human beings, but rather of the being itself of the philosopher, and his pertaining to a wider sphere than can be contained by any given body politic. To this extent, far from expressing the current global socio-political cosmopolite ideal, Diogenes was simply expressing once again, as he had done on countless occasions and in countless more or less esoteric gestures, the asocial and indeed apolitical essence of philosophical thought. Every philosopher must indeed be regarded as a cosmopolitan in this special sense; but far from supporting current cosmopolitan ideologies, this unique status of the philosopher (which he shares perhaps only with the artist and the spiritual master) actually represents the final and decisive disproof of the same, as we will consider more closely in the second part of this essay.

3 Save of course ‘fascist’ societies. But this particular term in the cosmopolitan’s lexicon is reserved almost exclusively reserved for Western states, or for states that are perceived to have been established by Western ‘imperialism’; the singular opposition to ‘fascism’ on the part of the cosmopolitan thus reveals itself as but another facet of his special lack of truly ‘cosmopolitan’ vision. But all of that is matter for another essay; in the meantime, we defer to the reader to the very useful remarks that Richard Heathen has made on this score in his recent essay ‘A Reconstructive Revolution’, Arktos Journal, 13 November 2019.

 

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A Reconstructive Revolution – Part 3 https://arktos.com/2019/11/15/a-reconstructive-revolution-part-3/ https://arktos.com/2019/11/15/a-reconstructive-revolution-part-3/#view_comments Fri, 15 Nov 2019 17:49:51 +0000 https://arktos.com/?p=7736 The myth of totalitarianism is a fairytale spun by the propagandists of this modern age. Every system of government to exist now or ever to exist has an official ideology or metapolitical narrative from which it derives its legitimacy, as well as its perception of morality, customs, and norms. That ideology justifies not only the existing political order, but also the position of those who hold power. In the post-World-War-II international order, that legitimacy comes primarily from the defeat of the Axis Powers. From a historical analysis emphasizing and exaggerating the brutality of the Axis Powers, while sweeping the brutality of the Allies under the rug, the Western intelligentsia, has created a narrative of the ‘good’ war, justifying the existing international and social order of the Western powers.

Any ruling class will punish actions, agitation, and behaviour that runs counter to, and threatens the stability of, its ideology; it will do so sometimes in small ways, sometimes in more extreme ways.

Any ruling class will punish actions, agitation, and behaviour that runs counter to, and threatens the stability of, its ideology; it will do so sometimes in small ways, sometimes in more extreme ways. It is therefore no surprise that the current system would ruthlessly punish anyone attempting to undermine its official ideology, as this kind of metapolitical warfare is a direct threat to the legitimacy of the ruling clique. This is why states will punish one set of dissidents more than others. Some dissidents are merely political critics; while they act against the system, they do so in such a way that does not challenge its ideological foundation, nor the narrative supporting its legitimacy. On the other hand, other types of dissidents are so radical that their very existence is a fundamental refutation of the moral and ethical justification of the system itself. These pose a much greater threat, and will be dealt with more seriously.

The dominant culture today is no less ‘totalitarian’ with its speech codes, diversity quotas, and ‘human rights’ than this portrait suggests. They allow no more true dissent than the Gestapo agents of the Third Reich. There is no private sphere in today’s world into which one can retreat to escape today’s democratic regime of human rights. One may not make any private civil society organization that flouts the moral commandments of the official ideology of the system. To be sure, one can have a private club that simply gathers in a private home; but the moment attempt is made to incorporate this group or bring it in any practically meaningful sense within the public sphere, it will come under attack by the ideological enforcers of the current social order.

If such an organization were to defy the humanistic moral code dictated by today’s system it risks being brought before a prejudicial judiciary so ideologically uncompromising that it would rival the caricatures drawn of Fascist courts. In many nations, to give but a single example of the current limitations, such organizations may not possess standards of membership which prohibit entry to the well-established protected classes of the neo-proletariat, nor may they say or publish things that offend individuals who are members of said protected classes.

If a man is exposed as holding the wrong beliefs, his life will likely be ruined. He can be unceremoniously stripped of his livelihood and he will be ejected from polite society. This in automatic response to the outcry of fanatical mobs acting as ideological shock troops, weaponizing histrionics and agitation against their political enemies. A man ostracized for believing the wrong things will not even be permitted to gather with like-minded individuals in a public space. Any attempt to do so will provoke the aforementioned mobs. They will not be punished; if you attempt to defend yourself, however, you will be.

Beyond that, if the system discovers any political dissident working in the political sphere, its ideological agents (aka ‘activists’) will target this figure, and those within the system will make sure he is dealt with severely. When an Antifa operative, Eric Clanton attacked right-wing activists with a bike lock on a chain, causing bodily injury in several people, and was charged with four counts of felony assault with a deadly weapon, he was given a slap on the wrist in the form of three-year probation.1

In comparison, people on the dissident right have been systemically targeted by the powers that be. Members of the Rise Above Movement have been indicted on charges of crossing state lines in order to incite or participate in a riot, for simply defending themselves when they were attacked by leftist agitators while attending the infamous rally in Charlottesville in 2017.2 The Charlottesville rally was meant to protest the removal of a Confederate monument. Violence broke out when the police were ordered by the mayor’s office to stand down, breaking the agreement the police had made with event organizers to keep the peace and contain left-wing ‘counter-protesters’. Their inaction allowed violence to break out when leftist agitators attacked the event attendees. When the police eventually did intervene they declared the event an ‘unlawful assembly’ and ordered the event attendees to leave. All of this, despite the fact the organizers had a permit and a court order overturning the dictates of Charlottesville City officials to shutdown the event, or have it moved. This was an intentional strategy to get the event shut down. According to an independent investigation by Hunton & Williams, an independent law firm based out of Richmond VA,

Chief Thomas’s response to the increasing violence on Market Street was disappointingly passive. Captain Lewis and Chief Thomas’ personal assistant Emily Lantz both told us that upon the first signs of open violence on Market Street, Chief Thomas said ‘let them fight, it will make it easier to declare an unlawful assembly.’3

The police then funnelled the event attendees into the crowd of counter-protesters, which action caused the violence that day. Despite being the aggressors, none of the leftist agitators, to the best of my knowledge, were ever charged. Certainly none of the so-called ‘counter protesters’ were charged with crossing state lines in order to incite or participate in a riot. Only the attendees from the dissident right had these charges brought against them.

This is, of course, because the leftists represent the ideology of the system. These leftists and their various branches, funded by the bourgeois moneyed class, have been engaging in their own cultural revolution, slowly working to overthrow the bourgeois order, using an alliance of ascendant neo-proletarians as so many blunt tools to consolidate their power, much like Mao Zedong mobilized the youth during the cultural revolution in China, as a weapon against his political enemies.4

As the neo-proletariat rises, so do the values of the slave. While the international economic system is still dominated by finance capital, the proletarianization of general society is well underway, and victimhood is now worn like a badge of honour. Leftist groups are now beginning to conflict with one another, competing with each other as to whose members have been most victimized. The idealization of mass appeal is becoming ever more pronounced. The coalition of the neo-proletariat is climbing ever higher on the social latter, as can be seen from a variety of signs, be it the normalization of the mental illness known as transgenderism, or the ever more non-whites entering positions of power under the banner of ‘diversity’. Every institution at every level of society is seeing ever greater numbers of neo-proletarians enter its ranks. Even the royal family of England betrays as much; Meghan Markle, a mixed-race American divorcee, has married Prince Henry of the British Royal family, and happens to be three years his senior. This represents the dissolution of several traditional standards.

Those who see beyond the obvious falsehood of the contemporary world are incentivized to go along to get along, lest they are made into examples for daring to defy the ideology of the system.

All of this is the result of a cultural revolution by the united forces of global subversion, the agents of the capitalist and proletarian classes. This revolution is only the latest push in a steady decline that roughly began during the French and American Revolutions.

It has infected every aspect of our culture, and has proved remarkably self-perpetuating. People are indoctrinated into it from childhood through constant repetition of carefully chosen vocabulary and mantras. Those who see beyond the obvious falsehood of it all are incentivized to go along to get along, lest they end up like those discussed above, made into examples for daring to defy the ideology of the system.

Education in our late Western World has been systematically designed to inculcate the ideology of the system as aggressively and as uncompromisingly as any Fascist state. The German National Socialists would marvel, not only at how efficiently and completely our masters of so-called education are able to indoctrinate children into the system’s ideology, but also at the speed at which this system, through a cultural revolution of its own, was able to completely reverse and invert tremendously long-standing social norms, such as the taboo against homosexuality and transgenderism. In the course of mere decades, individuals once regarded as sexual deviant outcasts have been transformed into brave role models deserving of praise and emulation.

From the delegitimization of Christianity to the new orthodoxy on race, the ruling clique have solidified their power through a complete overhaul of previously held norms, along with the formation of a coalition of ‘victimized’ groups, using neo-Marxism as a banner under which to rally their unlikely coalition. This alliance of purported outcasts and underdogs easily transforms into the most zealous advocate of the system itself, for its members intuitively understand that that system is responsible for their elevation in status, and fear that, should the system collapse, they would go back to their previous station.

The end goal is a global society and the ‘end of history’, as most recently heralded by Francis Fukuyama. This represents the utopian aim of liberalism and Marxism, both of which believe in eventual achievement of heaven on Earth and an end to the unfolding of the violent upheavals of history. They envision a bright future in which human beings will be as house pets, free to consume and pursue mindless amusements. While this is sold as a dream, if the modern day is any indication, it will be the ultimate nightmare.

This view of inevitable utopia is at odds with the Fascist vision of time and space:

Fascism rejects the absurd conventional falsehood of political equity, the habit of collective responsibility, and the myth of indefinite progress and happiness.5

Fascist philosophy understands the rise and inevitable decline of high cultures. This concept was detailed in length in Decline of the West by German philosopher Oswald Spengler. Spengler’s work had an immense impact on all Fascist thinkers in the first half of the twentieth century, from the leader of the British Union of Fascists, Oswald Mosley, to Benito Mussolini himself. Spengler’s work underlined the impetus for the Fascist projects. Fascism represents a stand against the forces of decay and decline in its heralding of a return to the martial virtues and vitalism of earlier ages. These were ages when life was not a question to be solved, when the continuation of our nations and traditions was not up for debate. Ages where the very idea of apologizing or ‘being sorry’ for the victories and conquering spirit of our forefathers would not have been so much as imagined as a legitimate attitude, much less embraced as the moral norm. Fascism represents the healthy and natural urge to hold the forces of chaos at bay and to establish a cultural and spiritual Renaissance, by declaring war on both the agents of global subversion, and the culture of weakness and decay which they tow in their wake.

[I]f [Fascism] can be considered not as an outward display of sensational aspects, but as an inward message of [a] new philosophy of life – that philosophy of life that is to take the place of our glorified and, nevertheless, so poignantly unsatisfactory because so brutally destructive, Individualism – it is then still possible that the prophesied ‘Decline of the West’ may be definitely halted and, in its stead, we may witness the birth of a new and greater Renaissance.6

Fascism was born out of the chaos of the post-WWI era, and thus at its inception gathered together many contradictory elements, such as populism and elitism. This can be seen on the one hand as the brotherhood of the warrior class that fought together in the trenches, and on the other the innate desire to institute legitimate authority based on warrior and martial principles.

While Fascism can be seen as a revolt against secularism and modernity, it itself was partially secular, and harboured elements of modernity with it. A passage from ‘The Doctrine of Fascism’ is worth quoting here:

Monarchical absolutism is a thing of the past, and so is the worship of the church power. Feudal privileges and division into impenetrable castes with no connection between them are also have beens…7

Indeed, many Fascist contemporaries were very concerned with those aspects of the revolution which appeared to their eyes too modern and progressive. If the Fascist revolution had been able to fulfil itself, however, it is very likely that it would have been purified, and the higher transcendent aspects would have prevailed against the elements within it that contradicted its inner imperative.

No one claims that there was a very clear discrimination between the essential and the accessory in these currents, that in them the idea was confronted by people of high quality who understood it, or that various influences arising from the very forces that had to be combatted had been overcome. The process of ideological purification would have taken place at a later time, once some immediate and unavoidable political problems had been resolved. But even so it was clear that a marshalling of forces was taking shape, representing an open challenge to ‘modern’ civilization…8

Thus, after the invasion of Abyssinia, the Italian Fascist Party did pass legislation regarding race. It sought to preserve the distinction between indigenous Italians and their North African subjects. The preservation of this distinction can be seen as fitting the mould of the Indian caste system. The Fascist state also created an honoured place for the Catholic Church within its fledgling society, providing both prestige and status for the Church and her agents.

Against the unbridled liberty of the individual, the Fascists brought authority. Against the levelling concept of egalitarianism, they brought hierarchy. Against class warfare, they brought unity.

Fascism fought against the forces of decay and subversion, against the degradation of national life caused by both the agitation of the proletariat and the indifference and paralyzing decadence of the bourgeoisie. Through pure instinct, Fascists fought against the forces that were degrading the dignity of their nations, and have continued to do so ever since the end of the Second World War. Against the unbridled liberty of the individual, they brought authority. Against the levelling concept of egalitarianism, they brought hierarchy. Against class warfare, they brought unity. Against rule by money, they brought the heroic ideal, as exemplified on the battlefield. Against every degrading instinct of the modern world, they brought the diametric opposite. It was, and still can be, as Evola suggests, a reconstructive revolution:

Fascism appears to us as a reconstructive revolution, in that it affirms an aristocracy and spiritual concept of the nation, as against both socialist and internationalist collectivism and the democratic and demagogic notion of the nation. In addition, its scorn for the economic myth and its election of the nation in practice to the degree of ‘warrior nation’, marks positively the first degree of this reconstruction, which is to re-subordinate the values of the ancient casts of the ‘merchants’ and the ‘slaves’ to the values of the immediately higher caste. The next step would be the spiritualization of the warrior principle itself.9

It is possible that under the banner of such a Fascism, the men of the West might once again find their dignity and their strength, enough to finally exorcise – both the degrading instincts that pervade our nations, and the forces of chaos that permeate the international system. If we are to prevail, it will be through a philosophy of vitality, unity, hierarchy, and authority.

References

4Frank Dikötter, The Cultural Revolution: A People’s History, 1962–1976 (Bloomsbury Press, 2017).

5 Benito Mussolini, ‘The Doctrine of Fascism’ 1932.

6 Mario Palmieri, The Philosophy of Fascism, The Dante Alighieri Society, 1936.

7 Benito Mussolini, ibid.

8 Julius Evola, A Traditionalist Confronts Fascism (Arktos Media Ltd., 2015).

9 Julius Evola, The Metaphysics of War (Arktos Media Ltd., 2011).

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A Reconstructive Revolution – Part 2 https://arktos.com/2019/11/14/a-reconstructive-revolution-part-2/ https://arktos.com/2019/11/14/a-reconstructive-revolution-part-2/#comments_reply Thu, 14 Nov 2019 17:32:32 +0000 https://arktos.com/?p=7731 In the aftermath of the First World War, a new class of men rose up to oppose the roaming communist/socialist bands that were threatening to unleash, all over Europe, the same chaos that was laying waste to Russia. In the words of right-wing philosopher Julius Evola:

It is well known where and under what symbols the forces for a possible resistance tried to organize. On one side, a nation that, since it had been unified, had known nothing but the mediocre climate of liberalism, democracy, and a constitutional monarchy, dared to assume the symbol of Rome as the basis for a new political conception and a new ideal of virility and dignity. Analogous forces awoke in the nation that in the Middle Ages had made the Roman symbol of imperium its own in order to reaffirm the principle of authority and the primacy of those values that are rooted in the blood, race, and the deepest powers of a stock. And while in other European nations, groups were already orienting themselves in the same direction, a third force in Asia joined the ranks, the nation of the samurai, in which the adoption of the outer forms of modern civilization had not prejudiced its fidelity to a warrior tradition centred upon the symbol of the solar empire of divine right…1

This indeed, as Evola states it, was the story of the Second World War. Evola believed that civilization incrementally transformed from one where spiritual principles of transcendence and hierarchy were central, to one based on warrior ethos, eventually moving to one where bourgeois morality reigned supreme. With the rise of Bolshevism, he believed the West was moving towards a society in which the morality of the slave or proletariat, the lowest of all castes, was going to prevail. Evola saw each of these steps as a devolution, a degradation of civilization, and thus saw Fascism as a movement that perhaps could halt, and maybe even reverse, the degradation, by reorienting society towards the virtues of the warrior.

It wasn’t just Marxism the Fascists were opposing; they also opposed the existing liberal order which had proved so ineffective in the face of naked Marxist aggression. Fascism opposed international finance and rule by money, and put forth a fundamentally different vision of the world than the economico-centricity of both Marxism and liberalism.

The movement started in Italy when veterans of the First World War rallied around a former socialist, Benito Mussolini, and formed the Fasci d’Azione Rivoluzionaria, later the Fasci Italiani di Combattimento, roughly translated into English as the League of Revolutionary Action and the Italian League of Combat respectively, to route out and fight the Marxists who were attempting to usher in a communist revolution.

Mussolini himself was inspired by Gabriele D’Annunzio, a famous poet and adventurer who lead a squadron of Arditi, an elite special force of the Royal Italian Army, to occupy the city of Fiume in 1919. At the end of the First World War it had been presumed Fiume was to be awarded to Italy on account of the city’s predominantly Italian speaking population. But the Allied Powers reneged on many of their contractual obligations under the secret Treaty of London of 1915, which was used to entice Italy into abandoning her alliance with Germany and the Austro-Hungarian Empire and joining the war on the side of the Allies. D’Annunzio felt that this was an injustice and a blow against the national pride of the Italian nation, even though the liberal government had no desire to press their claims over either Fiume or any of the territories owed to them by the Treaty of London. So D’Annunzio lead 2,000 Arditi and conquered the city with ease. He and his men ruled the city for fifteen months, in which time he pioneered the Fascist style, bringing back the Roman salute and making dramatic speeches, and he even used the title ‘leader’ (duce) for his position, something that would be copied by Fascist leaders going forward.

Inspired by the warrior poet, Mussolini gathered war veterans and routed the Marxists from their strongholds, countered them at every turn, besting them in street battle. The Fascists eventually defeated the Marxist threat, and Mussolini took power when he lead his men on the infamous March on Rome.

It wasn’t just Marxism the Fascists were opposing, however; they also opposed the existing liberal order which had proved so ineffective in the face of naked Marxist aggression. Fascism opposed international finance and rule by money, and put forth a fundamentally different vision of the world than the economico-centricity of both Marxism and liberalism. It posits a view of life that is inherently spiritual and metaphysical in its orientation.

Fascism is an eminently idealistic and, more specifically, an anti-materialistic and anti-individualistic philosophy of life. These characteristics are clearly expressed by the recognition of the eternal value of the spiritual essence of man and of the transitory aspect of his earthly being… He who thinks of Fascism and its worth thinks, primarily and above all, of what Fascism stands for in the realm of the spirit; of its contribution to man’s spiritual heritage.2

Fascism fundamentally rejects the notion of the primacy of the individual. While it is true that traditional European culture is more individualistic then other cultures, for example the Oriental, this was always balanced out by the codes of honour and duty, endemic to that Indo-European warrior culture from which all the modern nations of Europe descend.

Instead of principles of non-aggression or voluntarism, the Fascist abides by principles that are essentially martial in nature: namely principles of Duty, Authority, and Unity. These principles guide the Fascist’s actions in every aspect of life.

In the principle of Duty, the Fascist is bound by his inherited obligations, whether it be to family, caste, nation or empire. The Fascist recognizes himself as only one part of an organic whole, not only societally but also chronologically. He knows that he has a role to play not only in the here and now, but as a placeholder in time. He owes his life and existence to the thousands of generations that came before him and recognizes his obligation not only to preserve the health and prestige of his family, nation or Imperium, but to expand upon it, to hand off something greater to the next generation. This understanding stands in direct contradiction to the liberal worldview, with its belief that an individual should have no positive unchosen obligations, that the individual should be free to pick and choose all his attachments and obligations.

The Fascist aligns himself with the ancient world when he acknowledges the principle of Authority. In a Fascist order, the leader should be the highest man, the greatest man among great men. In this way his authority is earned and unquestioned. This is the concept of hero as leader, in a society in which all men should strive to be the leader, to endlessly pursue discipline and self-actualization. If the greatest man in the land, the national hero, leads a nation, how can such a leader not be seen as closer to the divine than most men? How can his leadership be seen as anything other than an expression of divine providence itself? The Roman Emperor was thought to be a manifestation of divinity on Earth. In the Medieval Age, the divine right of kings reigned; the king had his authority because it was believed that God had willed it so.

In this way Fascism represents a return to a traditional order. The hero as leader represents a shining example, an ideal toward which all men should strive.

The principle of Unity represents another of the Fascist martial virtues. In Unity we are compelled to let go of petty grudges and work together for a higher cause. Just as a platoon of soldiers will not long survive in war if they are bickering amongst themselves instead of working together, a polity will be gravely weakened if the various limbs of the body politic tear at one another in constant conflict. Thence the innovation of the total state in the first half of the twentieth century.

What is the purpose of the total state?

Commenters of liberal background have accused Fascist regimes of being wholly modernist in their conceptions, claiming that they owe their view of statecraft and the world to Thomas Hobbs and his idea of the Leviathan. This is a wholly inaccurate and reductionist point of view. It only examines the surface and not the root, the cause or context, of Fascism.

Fascism represents the manifestation of a new way of life, largely unknown and unrealized in the modern world. The Fascist revolutions were an ongoing process that actually represented a profound cultural and spiritual revolution, a counter-revolution meant to undo the liberal, Marxist, and proto-Marxist revolutions. This was unfortunately a process that never was able to fulfill itself, but the total state was the means toward that end.

The total state was the social innovation through which the Fascist cultural and spiritual revolution was to perpetuate itself. This is why the National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP) brought all civil institutions within its sphere of influence; it was working to replace the decadent bourgeois spirit and culture with a vitalist view of life, compatible with the warrior caste. The total state was not just some invention for the blind pursuit of power by crazed madmen who lusted after power for its own sake. No: the goal was to remake society and reorientate it to be compatible with the spiritual imperatives of the warrior class. The goal of the regime was not to crassly impose its will on the people, but to convert and change them. This is why the National Socialist regime, far from imposing its will with force on every and all occasions, often acquiesced to the people when it had moved too fast with its cultural and spiritual revolution.

Fascism represents the manifestation of a new way of life, largely unknown and unrealized in the modern world.

The NSDAP played a game of push and pull with the population, trying to rebuild German culture and, with it, the German people. Part of the National Socialist cultural revolution in Germany was the incremental suppression of church influence in private life, with the goal of an eventual replacement of Christianity with the National Socialist ideology,3 and perhaps a new volkish religion.

In the long run, the church question, is a question of the young people. The less the parents opposition is aroused on church matters, the less they will inculcate in their children an opposition to the teachings of the Hitler Youth. The school system could hardly be changed faster than the people themselves.

— Rudolf Hess

The National Socialist regime saw the sectarian divides between Catholicism and the various denominations of Protestantism as a dividing force among the German people. To the end of uniting the Germans, while marginalizing the influence of the churches in Germany, the NSDAP spearheaded a number of changes that they eventually had to back away from in the face of popular mobilization by the people. Instead of forcing their reforms through with violence, the Party, particularly Hitler, took the popular reaction as a sign that they were moving too fast with their cultural revolution, and relented. This is because, far from wanting to force an ideological programme, Hitler truly wanted to convert Germans to his way of thinking. He not only wanted to rebuild the German nation, but the German people as well. He wanted to purify and strengthen Germans, much in line with Nietzsche’s concept of the superman, using a combination of positive eugenics, social engineering through inculcation of National Socialism and the construction of a new national mythology, as well as the tearing down of all sectarian barriers between the German people, thus creating a unified national community (Volksgemeinschaft) which was united by a common world outlook and common German racial stock.

In Italy, the Fascist revolution manifested as a cultural and national renaissance. The Italian Fascist Party, lead by Benito Mussolini, spearheaded a national revival determined on recapturing the glory of ancient Rome. Fascism brought Italy into the twentieth century, making a once-backwater nation into a European power, restoring both pride and prestige to the Italian people.

When Mussolini came to power in 1922, Italy had a rich cultural heritage, but financially and politically it was what we call today a ‘third world country’. By the 1930s Italy had a European presence. Mussolini saw to the draining of the Pontine Marshes around Rome, which had been a source of malaria since antiquity. … Farmers worked on the recovered land and villages and small towns were constructed there. This and similar projects restored millions of acres of arable land. They were part of Mussolini’s ‘wars’ for the lira, wheat, country life and population that aimed at giving Italy greater control over its destiny. The positive effects on national morale surpassed its economic success, which was not, however, insignificant. From 1925 to 1935 grain production grew significantly, and the importing of foreign grain dropped by 75%. The crushing national debt was renegotiated from short-term to long-term loans. Servicing the domestic debts went from 28 billion lire a year, to 6 billion. …

There were also public works projects in addition to the rural initiatives. In Rome, subways and new roads to the Coliseum and the Vatican were constructed to ease traffic congestion. (Rome’s two subway lines built under Fascism are still the only active ones.) A large sports complex, the Foro Mussolini, was built for the 1940 Olympics (which was cancelled because of the war). It still houses the soccer stadium on the site of the Italian Tennis Open. This train system was electrified and train stations built in the major cities. Not only did ‘the trains run on time’, but their journey times were reduced significantly. (The travel time from Rome to Syracuse was cut in half.) Again the question of morale was as significant as the measurable results. The Italian people felt that things were happening in areas of their national life where nothing had been accomplished ‘since Tiberius’ time’.”4

However, the Fascist revolution wasn’t limited to making material improvements alone; it also sought a cultural renaissance, by reviving a link to its deep historical roots. By reviving the symbols of Ancient Rome, Italian Fascism declared itself the successor of the ancient Roman Empire, claiming its prestige and heritage as its rightful inheritance.

There was also a cultural side of Fascism. By its restoration of the ancient Roman fasces, Fascism proclaimed Italy’s ancient traditions. It sponsored archaeological projects to uncover the Roman past from the republican temples at Largo Argentina in Rome to excavations at Ostia and Libya. The great Ara Pacis of the Emperor Augustus was recovered from beneath the streets of downtown Rome and, following negotiations with the Vatican for parts preserved there, was restored and displayed near the Tiber, where it can still be seen. But it was not only ancient art that Fascism encouraged. There was a national movie industry in Cinecitta outside Rome… writers like Pirandello, D’Annuzio and Marinetti were honoured. Italy’s great past was linked to a creative present and future.5

The Italian Fascist Party also did not aim for a cultural renaissance alone, however. Like their German contemporaries, the Fascists wanted a cultural revolution. They wanted rapid and dramatic change, away from the decadent individual morality of bourgeois society, towards a more holistic and vitalist philosophy. They viewed liberal democratic morality as weak, decadent, and unnatural.

Fascism rejects the concept of an economic happiness which is to be, at a given moment in the evolution of economy, socialistically and almost automatically realized by assuring to all the maximum of well being. Fascism denies the possibilities of a materialistic concept of happiness. It leave that to the economists at the first half of the 18th century, that is it denies the equation well being=happiness which sees in men mere animals, content when they can feed and fatten, thus reducing them to a vegetative existence pure and simple.

The principle that society exists only for the welfare and freedom of the individuals composing it does not seem to conform with the plans of nature, plans in which the species only is taken into consideration and the individual appears sacrificed. It is strongly to be feared that the last word of democracy thus understood … would be a social state in which a degenerated mass would have no preoccupation beyond that of enjoying the ignoble pleasures of the vulgar person.6

They also sought to create a ‘new man’, who, instead of viewing the purpose of life as vegetative consumption, saw life as a constant struggle for self-actualization. They disregarded utopian ideas of perpetual progress or the end of history, whether in the liberal or Marxist context.

Fascism, wants man to be active and engaged in action with all his energies. It wants him to possess a manly awareness of the difficulties facing him and to be ready to confront them head on. It conceives of life as a struggle in which man is called upon to conquer for himself a truly worthy place, first of all by fashioning himself (physically, morally, intellectually) into the instrument required for achieving victory…. Fascism, in short, is not only a law-giver and a founder of institutions, but an educator and a promoter of spiritual life. It aims at rebuilding not only the forms of life but their content — man, his character, and his faith. To achieve this purpose it enforces discipline and uses authority, entering into the soul and ruling with undisputed sway…7

In pursuit of creating the Fascist ‘new man’, the Italian Fascists, as well as securing a monopoly on education, and promoting pro-Fascist art and culture, also started a youth faction of the Fascist Party, the Opera Nazionale Balilla, later renamed the Gioventù Italiana del Littorio. This organization claimed a monopoly on youth organization, and therefore banned all other groups, except for the Catholic Action youth group, which was exempted as a concession with the Vatican, pursuant to the Lateran Accord between the Vatican and the Fascist state.

Unlike the National Socialist regime in Germany, the Fascists embraced the Catholic Church and Christianity, using support from the Pope and his cardinals as a means of legitimizing Fascism to the Catholic majority in Italy. Mussolini even made Catholicism the official religion of Italy, ending the long stand-off between the Vatican and the Italian state, after the forceful annexation of the Papal States in 1870. The Lateran Treaty, along with the ongoing support of the Catholic Church, did much to legitimize the Fascist State.

Had the Fascist culturo-spiritual revolution been permitted to run its course, I think it very likely that the total state would have loosened in its control of civil society. Just as laws naturally become more lax in a high-trust society with low crime, once the culturo-spiritual revolution had been completed and an order based on a warrior ethos and vision of life had emerged, the utility of a monopoly over civil society would have been greatly reduced; in fact such a monopoly would likely have become redundant and burdensome. Civic organizations would have slowly but surely drifted back into their own sphere as the cultural transformation came to its completion and the total state fulfilled its purpose in the cultural sphere. While still authoritarian, the social order would have became an organic whole, and society would have come to be governed by the higher discipline and order of the warrior state. A higher standard of conduct and dignity would have become the new social norm, and so the bar for social conduct would have been set equivalently higher, and reciprocally enforced by each member of society. Those who failed to do so would have had to answer to their fellow man, and the need for state enforcement would have been largely reduced as a consequence.

Of course, to the liberal reader, all of this will sound insufferably totalitarian, so we must now address the myth of totalitarianism mentioned earlier.

References

1 Julius Evola, A Traditionalist Confronts Fascism (Arktos Media Ltd, 2015).

2 Mario Palmieri, The Philosophy of Fascism, The Dante Alighieri Society, 1936.

3Link for source on the Hitler and the NSDAP’s concessions: https://www.amazon.com/Hitlers-Compromises-Coercion-Consensus-Germany-ebook/dp/B01HM3A6YC

4 E. Christian Kopff, ‘Introduction’ to Julius Evola’s Fascism Viewed From The Right (Arktos Media Ltd, 2013).

5 Ibid.

6 Benito Mussolini, ‘The Doctrine of Fascism’ (1932).

7Ibid.

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A Reconstructive Revolution – Part 1 https://arktos.com/2019/11/13/a-reconstructive-revolution/ https://arktos.com/2019/11/13/a-reconstructive-revolution/#view_comments Wed, 13 Nov 2019 14:35:33 +0000 https://arktos.com/?p=7718 In the modern world, the term Fascism is much maligned. It is used as a catch-all term for anything perceived as ‘oppressive’ (according to the standards of of our modern sensibilities), and often as a synonym for totalitarianism, itself a myth of the post-World-War-II global order (we will return to the myth of totalitarianism later). However Fascism is best understood as a different way of being as compared to the dominant ideologies today, complete with its own system of ethics, vision of life, view of the world. It rejects both liberalism (along with its ideological variants, which include but are not limited to libertarianism, neoliberalism, classical liberalism, anarcho-capitalism, etc.) and Marxism.

Fascism is best understood as a different way of being as compared to the dominant ideologies today, complete with its own system of ethics, vision of life, view of the world.

The liberal view of the world is that of a global marketplace, with each individual unbound from all external duties and obligations. It is a vision of life that seeks the liberation of the individual from all outer fetters through the pursuit of resources and sensual pleasure for its own sake. It sees the warrior ethos of duty and authority as anachronistic at best, and at worst, as a dangerous and brutal philosophy that desires to oppress those free individuals who seek their own rational self interest – which, it is believed for some reason, will lead to a better world where material comforts will be available to all. Liberalism opposes aristocracy, class, monarchy – anything traditional which might stymie the individual – and it does so no matter how long the tradition, or how well it has served.

This view sees freedom in a purely negative and externalized way. Its purveyors care not how this so-called liberty is to be used, only that a man may have it. This ideology is connected to a specific way of life – the lifestyle, ethics, and all around vision of life of the merchant, of the bourgeoisie. Thus liberalism represents a specific way of life, for a very specific type of man, with a very specific nature.

Liberal thinkers assure us that we can be happy with mere material abundance, that there is no greater meaning or mission of life than acquisition, nor should their be. We should be focusing on working for some soulless corporation eighty hours a week in order to hoard enough capital that we can maximize our consumption. Instead of being decisive actors in history, we should just engage in commerce.

They believe that ‘rational self-interest’ guides the choices of men: if a man is given two choices, he will naturally choose the one that is the most economically advantageous. They believe that, through economic cooperation, people can always construct win/win scenarios, whereby working together through negotiation, men will always come to an understanding and be better off than they would be if they were to come into conflict.

The problem with this worldview is that it focuses solely on the economic and material; it thus denies the existence of zero-sum games, situations in which there can be no win/win, and where economics is not a factor. For example religious wars: the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is a zero-sum game, because both sides have a mutually exclusive claim on a territory, and both insist upon their rights for historical and religious reasons.

Liberalism also licenses all manner of self-destructive and anti-civilizational behaviour. Under the banner of ‘individual freedom’, liberals advocate the allowance of behaviour producing negative externalities, many of which are disastrous when the costs are imposed on society on a mass scale by millions of people, whether in the form of drug use, high rates of single motherhood, broad employment of foreign labour or any of the other anti-social behaviours produced by this attitude.

This vision of freedom is cold, and extremely cynical. How exactly does one define such a ‘freedom’ or ‘liberty’? Certainly, one might call a heroin addict ‘free’, if he is allowed to pursue his base instincts and engage in his heroin addiction without any outside coercion. As long as he is not hurting anyone else, and can fund his habit himself, what right does anyone have to get involved and tell him how to live his life? According to liberalism this man is a free individual, able to make his own choices, even if they are manifestly bad ones. But is he truly free? Or is he merely subject to a more insidious form of slavery? Is violent intervention really such an injustice in cases like this?

A Fascist view of freedom or liberty is much different. By a Fascist view, freedom is self-mastery. It is the ability to act with agency, forcing oneself to do things that are hard, and that in many cases one does not want to do, but to do so without the inner resistance so common to people in the modern world. But most importantly, freedom is the ability to manifest one’s will in the world. For the Fascist, discipline is freedom. Strength is freedom. Intelligence and truth are freedom. Therefore, a polity that creates the optimum environment for self-actualization through discipline and through educating men to face trying ordeals is the most free.

This is completely at odds with the ‘live and let live’ idea of freedom expressed in bourgeois societies.

The liberal bourgeois vision of life has been dominant since the end of the Second World War, especially since the end of the Cold war, and if we look around us we see a world in decay. Despite ever-growing technology to connect us, people have become more disconnected from each other, ever more alienated in a world of consumerism and hyper-individualism.

One could argue that we have become so disconnected from the organic meaning of life, so isolated, that we have entered the age of the post-individual, having become disconnected even from ourselves.

Our experiences are increasingly shifting from the real world to cyberspace, where our experiences are virtual. We live our lives vicariously, as disconnected and isolated nodes on vast electronic networks in an unchartable digital space, floating in a false yet personalized reality, custom-made to our biases and preferences. Here we find the product of liberalism taken to its nth degree. This is the logical and inevitable conclusion of a world where bourgeois morality reigns supreme. And this disconnect with the real world will continue at an indefinite acceleration as we speed towards the transhumanist dream, moving ever further from both our humanity and any conception of an organic meaning of life.

International finance and the corporate world embrace and promote the neo-Marxist ideology of the neo-proletariate.

Then we have Marxism, which represents the morality of the faceless mass. The moral code of Marxism is represented by the greatest good for the greatest number. The Marxist vision of life seeks to level all hierarchies. Where liberalism destroyed monarchies and aristocracies in favour of plutocracy veiled as democracy, appealing to universal suffrage and the rights of the individual man to perform its destructive work, Marxism takes the levelling instincts of liberalism to their logical conclusion. Marxism, also called ‘collectivism’, demands absolute egalitarianism in every aspect of life. Bringing everyone down to the level of the lowest common denominator. This is the instinct of the proletariat, the mob, the peasant or the slave. But we are speaking of the most savage of the social classes. One has only to look at the history of slave rebellions to ascertain as much. Whether it be the Reign of Terror and the September Massacre during the French Revolution or the Red Terror of the Bolshevik Revolution, the slave revolt in Haiti or the Cultural Revolution in China, slave revolts have always proved the most vicious and bloody of any kind of uprising, as they represents the unleashing of the most primal appetites by the most savage elements of society.

In the early twentieth century, the urban industrial worker represented this class, along with the moral perspective and vision of life that goes along with his special social role. However, after the Cold War, when capitalism prevailed over communism as the ruling ideology of modernity, class consciousness gave way to consumerism, and the workers ceased to be the agents of revolution; thus the forces of global subversion had to find a new agent for revolution, a neo-proletariat. Leftist ideologues had discovered that, when it came down to it, the working classes of Western Civilization would rally to the defence of their nations, remaining true to their organic roots of blood and soil, and that very few would take up arms in the cause of global revolution.

When the call came, the worker, whom Marx declared to have no Fatherland, identified himself with country, not class. He turned out to be a member of the national family like anyone else. The force of his antagonism which was supposed to topple capitalism found a better target in the foreigner. The working class went to war willingly, even eagerly, like the middle class, like the upper class…1

It was out of this discovery that a new proletariat was found in women, racial minorities, homosexuals, transsexuals, etc. So the leftist agents of global subversion began peddling degeneracy, depravity and masochism to lift up and to venerate what had once been reviled.

While liberalism and Marxism seem on the surface to be enemies, they are really the same force of decay manifested at different times and in different ways. Liberalism is the early stage; it erodes the traditional order. It levels the traditional hierarchy of crown and aristocracy. Liberalism paves the way for Marxism. The liberals of the French Revolution paved the way for the proto-Marxists of the Reign of Terror. The liberal conspirators against the Tsar in the February Revolution in Russia paved the way for the Bolshevik Revolution that October. In every Western nation the popularization of Marxist ideology was preceded by liberalism, which eroded the traditional order and the traditional morality, all in the name of ‘progress’ and the ‘individual’.

Today we see these two forces joining together openly now that their mission of destruction is almost complete. International finance and the corporate world embrace and promote the neo-Marxist ideology of the neo-proletariate. They stand ‘in solidarity’ with the sexual degenerate, who would have rightfully been ostracized in a healthier and more vital age. The official transmissions of the system glorify sickness and weakness. As in a dystopian novel, they condemn and revile any and all healthy impulses, and instead demand that we all become as morally bankrupt, sickly, weak, and mad as their pets, whom they use to consolidate power.

Liberal capitalism and global collectivism are working hand in hand: this represents the domination of the world by the merchant and slave classes.

The solution then is a revolt of the warrior class.

References

1 Barbara Tuchman, The Proud Tower: A Portrait of the World Before the War: 1890–1914, page 462

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The Lieutenant of God https://arktos.com/2019/11/09/the-lieutenant-of-god/ https://arktos.com/2019/11/09/the-lieutenant-of-god/#comments_reply Sat, 09 Nov 2019 14:03:42 +0000 https://arktos.com/?p=7711 The point of interest of this new, dense work on Joan of Arc is found in the fact that, in contrast to almost all other works on the same subject, it does not follow a historico-bibliographical point of view but, essentially, that of a philosophy, not to say a theology, of European history. The human, psychological and national aspects of Joan of Arc are not considered here so much as those traits thanks to which her figure acquires the value of a symbol, and for which her appearance and her destiny indicate a turning point in the history of European Christianity.

The facts preannounced through prophecy or oracle have no standing save as the garments and indices of something indivisible; they are in and of themselves secondary elements, whose true and deep sense reveals itself only afterwards.

The message of Joan of Arc possessed a revolutionary character in her time, by reason of the fact that it affirmed the idea of a chrism which a nation and the head of a nation can receive directly from God, and no longer exclusively through the representatives of the Church or other mediators of the sacred. A new possibility emerged therewith, one which was unknown in the late Medieval Period. Joan of Arc’s mission was to announce to the King of the French a kind of ‘election’ or of divine mandate. The title she gave to this mandate was ‘lieutenant de Dieu’ – and this in a context where, since the Guelph revolution of the eleventh and twelfth centuries, the dignity of being a representative of Christ had exclusively been vindicated by the head of the Church alone.

Joan prophesied the advent of a Saint Royaume de France1 – and in preparation for this, the battle with the English and history; for a moment it seems as if history became transparent in its higher meaning, as if history were conforming itself to an eternal, divine decision, announced by the ‘voices’ that spoke to Joan of Arc and by which she legitimized her mission and, subsequently, her martyrdom itself.

In this respect, Mirgeler clearly brings to light the sense that every true prophecy has always borne, and every true oracle. It is not a question of mere knowledge of the future. The facts preannounced through prophecy or oracle have no standing save as the garments and indices of something indivisible;2 they are in and of themselves secondary elements, whose true and deep sense reveals itself only afterwards.

True prophecy reveals what is the essential thing, in the light of a superior dimension, in earthly events, and prefigures this even as a sketch anticipates a work of art.

Thus prophecy indicates essentially a direction. In such cases, a choice is presented to that man who bears the responsibility of giving a form to history; he must say yea or nay to the prefigured direction, which represents that single path by which history may make visible anything transcendent or atemporal. The election or the condemnation of peoples depends on this decision: the degree to which they and their leaders possess the capacity to comply with the transcendence of a given destiny. When the experience produces a negative outcome, when the attempt fails, the two series disassociate from one another: the higher order becomes mere ‘history’, subject to those contingent factors by which ‘history’ is determined.

According to Mirgeler, France was given such a possibility at the appearance of Joan of Arc – the possibility, not only of lifting itself up once again in the moment of its extreme danger, but also of attaining to the dignity of a ‘Saint Royaume’. But all of this reduced to naught but a fleeting flash: the possibility that was offered to France, and that could have also possessed a universal significance for the whole of Christian Europe, was lost. The message of the Maid of Orléans was in vain.

Mirgeler rightly observes that, after the defection of Charles VII,3 France had to follow the decision taken toward the ‘absolute state’, which constitutes, as the rule of Philip the Fair4 had already heralded, the precise antithesis of the ‘Saint Royaume’. This is the root for the falsification entailed in the nationalistic and chauvenistic exploitation of the figure of Joan of Arc. There is indeed a radical antithesis between the state of affairs in which raison d’etat and national pride form the ultimate authority, to such a point that they divinize themselves (this being the direction which issues in modern ‘totalitarianism’), and the other state of affairs, in which a people and a leader effectively follow a ‘divine’ mandate, which implies a kind of catharsis and ascesis, a liberating of oneself from everything which is particularistic and also from every brute will to power.5

Mirgeler says that France therefore ever more came to follow the path of a blind ‘gloire’, a glory deprived of light: and for this reason, triumph never availed any Frenchman – not a Louis XIV nor a Napoleon, nor a Clemenceau;6 nor did it ever result in a positive contribution for a solider European order.

France therefore ever more came to follow the path of a blind ‘gloire’, a glory deprived of light: and for this reason, triumph never availed any Frenchman.

The true France – he says – is revealed when things reach their extreme. In such moments will sometimes appear the saviour, ‘the father of victory’:7 but he is no longer a Joan of Arc, he is not even the representative of the healthiest strata of France, which is to say those strata which are existentially Christian despite all corruption and all ‘free thought’. Then there are on the other hand figures who entirely pertain to the ‘beyond’, whose appearance or disappearance, as well as any fleeting energy they might arouse, remain void of any deeper meaning. But nothing better than this could be hoped from mass nationalism, whose prototype is offered to Europe precisely by France herself.

References

1French, ‘Holy Kingdom of France’. (All footnotes are the translator’s.)

2In the translator’s opinion, Evola’s original draft most likely had invisibile (‘invisible’) in the place of indivisibile (‘indivisible’), as the latter does not appear to make a great deal of immediate sense in the context.

3Charles VII of France (1403–1461) was king from 1422 till his death, and hence was the reigning monarch during the rise and fall of Joan of Arc, whose military triumphs greatly consolidated his power.

4Philip the Fair, or Philip IV of France (1268–1314), was noteworthy in the history of France for the power he granted to legalists and bureaucrats toward the centralization of his power, and for his dissolution of the Knights Templar (and the subsequent arrest and torture of hundreds of the Templars) on the pretext of a complaint brought against them, but in reality quite probably a maneuver to avoid the enormous debt he had accrued with them. He is sometimes regarded as a ‘man ahead of his time’ or a very ‘modern’ ruler; we concur with the latter observation, though surely not with the evaluation it implies.

5N.B. that the Italian here is libidine di potenza, and not volontà di potenza, which would be the common translation of Nietzsche’s celebrated (or infamous) idea of der Wille zur Macht. Libidine di potenza could also be translated as ‘thirst for power’ or ‘hunger for power’; it stems from the same Latin original which gives us our English ‘libido’.

6Louis XIV (1638–1715), the Sun King, was the outwardly resplendent ruler (for a bewildering seventy-two years) of an inwardly frivolous regime which was already well on the path to the tremendous collapse represented by the French Revolution. George Clemenceau (1841–1929) was Prime Minister of France during World War I, and thus oversaw both the defeat and the subsequent shaming of Germany (he was, for instance, one of the major architects of the scurrilous Treaty of Versailles). The degree to which Napoleon Bonaparte’s (1789—1821) in some ways grand attempt to unify Europe proved finally vain and impossible needs not be evaluated here, so well known are the historical facts surrounding the affair.

7Quite possibly a deliberate reference to Clemenceau (see previous note), who was known colloquially as ‘Father Victory’.

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