Evola and Second Degree Initiations (Some Quotations from RTG)


From Julius Evola’s Ride the Tiger:

  • p. 62:

    This brings us to the consideration οf the second degree οf the trial through self-knowledge, which belongs to the transcendent dimension and which conditions the final solution οf the existential problem. With the first degree, in fact, with the recognition οf “one’s own nature” and the making οf one’s own law, this problem is only resolved partially, οn the formal plane. That is the plane οf determination, or, if one prefers, individuation, which furnishes one with an adequate base for controlling one’s conduct in any circumstances. But this plane has nο transparency for one who wants to get to the bottom of things; absolute meaning is not yet to be found therein. When the situation remains at this stage, one is active in wanting to be oneself, but not with regard to the fact οf being thus and not otherwise. Το a certain type, this can seem like something so irrational and obscure as to set in motion a crisis that endangers everything he has gained hitherto along the lines indicated. It is then that he must undergo the second degree οf self-proving, which is like an experimental proof οf the presence within him, in greater or lesser measure, οf the higher dimension ο transcendence. This is the unconditioned nucleus that in life does not belong to life’s sphere, but to that οf Being.
  • p. 63:

    This unity with the transcendent is also the condition for preventing the process οf self-unification from taking a regressive path. There is in fact a possibility of a pathological unification οf the being from below, as in the case of an elementary passion that takes over the whole person, organizing all his faculties to its own ends. Cases of fanaticism and possession are no different in kind. One must consider this possible reduction to absurdity οf “being oneself” and of the unity οf the self. This is a further reason to require our particular type οf man to undergo the trial οf self-knowledge at the second degree, which concerns, as we have said, the presence οf the unconditioned and the supra-individual as his true center.
  • pp. 63-64:

    It is easy to see how this requires one to surpass and prove oneself, beyond one’s own nature and one’s own law. The autonomy οf him who makes his own will coincide with his own being is not enough. Moreover, it requires a rupture οf levels that can sometimes have the character οf violence done to oneself, and one has to be sure to remain on one’s feet even in the void and the formless. This is positive anomie, beyond autonomy. In less qualified types, in those in which the original inheritance, as I called it, is not sufficiently alive existentially, this trial almost always requires a certain “sacrificial” disposition: such a man has to feel ready to be destroyed, if need be, without being hurt thereby. The result οf trials or experiences οf this kind remains undetermined, and has always been so, even when the ultimate consecration οf inner sovereignty was sought within the institutional frameworks provided by Tradition. It is all the more so in today’s social climate, in circumstances where it is almost impossible to create a magical circle οf protection in this confrontation with transcendence, with that which is in fact not human.
  • p. 65:

    Naturally, we are not dealing here with normal existence, but with those possible forms οf it that are already differentiated, that have a certain intensity, while still being defined in a chaotic ambience, in the domain οf pure contingency. They are not infrequent today, and in the times to come they will surely proliferate. The state in question is that of the man who is self-confident through having as the essential center of his personality not life, but Being. He can encounter everything, abandon himself to everything, and open himself to everything without losing himself. He accepts every experience, no longer in order to prove and know himself, but to unfold all his possibilities in view οf the transformations that they can work in him, and of the new contents that offer and reveal themselves οη this path.
  • Additionally, in pp. 71-72:

    He sets himself above the moral plane not with pathos and polemics but with objectivity, hence through knowledge—the knowledge of causes and effects—and through conduct that has this knowledge as its only basis. Thus for the moral concept of “sin” he substitutes the objective one of “fault,” or more precisely “error.” For him who has centered himself in transcendence, the idea of “sin” has nο more sense than the current and vacillating notions of good and evil, licit and illicit. Αll these notions are burnt out of him and cannot spiritually germinate again. One might say that they have been divested of their absolute value, and are tested objectively on the basis of the consequences that in fact follow from an action inwardly free from them.
  • Finally, and to clarify and distinguish from “existentialist” positions and bourgeois thinkers, in p. 81:

    The affinity of these ideas with the positions already defined here is, however, relative, because existentialism is characterized by an unacceptable overvaluation of “situationality.” “Dasein” for Heidegger is always “being-in-the-world.” The destiny of the “boundary situation” is, for Jaspers as well as for Marcel, a liminal fact, a given in the face of which thinking halts and crashes. Heidegger repeats that the characteristic of “being-in-the-world” is not accidental for the Self: it is not as though the latter could exist without it, it is not that man firstly is, and then has a relation with the world-a causal, occasional, and arbitrary relationship with that which is. Αll this might well be the case, but only for a human type different from that which concerns us. As we know, in this human type an inner detachment, albeit coupled with an absolute assumption of his determined nature, limits any “situational” conditions and, from a superior point of view, minimizes and relegates to contingency any “being-in-the-world.”

AN ARISTOCRACY OF THE SOUL…

A Discussion of ‘Azoth’, ‘Atazoth’ and ‘Azathoth’

[Written originally as a casual response in conversation with V.K. Jehannum, then organically turned into a closer look at Typhonian Trilogies references to Azoth.]

In reference to this: https://vkjehannum.wordpress.com/2016/10/19/atazoth-at-taghut/

And to a lesser degree, to this: https://vkjehannum.wordpress.com/2018/01/05/regarding-the-scandalous-origins-of-satanism/, wherein said conversation with V.K. Jehannum is found.

WS was on point, whatever else she was saying, that there is no conclusive linkage, other than speculation, between ‘Atazoth’ and ‘Azathoth’. Also, O9A (in Anton Long’s hand) never claims a link to Lovecraft’s ‘Azathoth’, and distinctly names and defines ‘Atazoth’ as something different.  I will explain why a step at a time. Your essay basically jumps to the conclusion:

All of the ONA’s descriptions of Atazoth find their origin in the Typhonian Trilogies by Kenneth Grant.

Then you proceed to jump between mentions of ‘Atazoth’ and ‘Azathoth’, but nowhere in any of the documents are these two actually linked, and that claim supported by concrete analysis. The only mention that jumps out is Peter Carroll’s of Azathoth as increase in ‘Azoth’, but this is published in 1992, claimed only at a point where he could have been said to be taking influence from the O9A (Naos, Hostia, etc. predate it by many years and at least an article or two by him make a curious and illogical addition in a relatively early issue of Fenrir zine).

It is worthy to mention that Opus Vrilis, not a central O9A document, or an official order document as far as I understand, contains mentions of both Atazoth and Azathoth, but as entirely different entities and meanings1.

I checked out the relevant literature (said book by Grant, The Magical Revival, from 1972), and while Grant’s juxtaposition of the Lovecraftian mythos with Crowlean derivations is interesting in its own way, there does not seem to be anything concrete linking ‘Azathoth’ to ‘Azoth’ itself, except the insignificant claim, and there is certainly no mention of ‘Atazoth’ in Grant’s work.

There also seems to be a discrepancy in the nuance of understanding of the full meaning of ‘Azoth’ between the Golden Dawn line and the Traditional Alchemy line, which might further enhance the discrepancies between O9A’s and Typhonian ideas, reinforcing the lack of borrowing by the former from the latter.

In MS ‘Azoth’, O9A states: “Unsurprisingly, therefore, and for quite some time – since at least the days of A.E. Waite, Crowley, et al – ‘azoth’ has been (mis)understood as Mercurius, and connected to the Qabalah.
However, esoterically – and anciently, in alchemy – azoth was the term used to describe not ‘mercurius’ but rather the stable amalgam of the three basic alchemical elements: mercury, sulphur, and salt; a combination which many alchemists sought to find by various alchemical processes.”

While Crowley writes in 777: “Binah is connected with the Azoth, not only because the Azoth is the lower Moon, but because the Azoth partakes also of the Saturnian character, being the metal lead in one of the Alchemical systems.

You might want to read, in detail, Julius Evola’s Introduction to Magic (1971)2.  He makes mention of that “Philosophical Lead or Philosophical Azoth” but with a more complex understanding the nuance of which makes it differ from the distortions (intended or not) of the Golden Dawn: “We find this metal in the mine of Saturn. Root of the perfect metals, just as of the imperfect ones, it is endowed with a certain saturnine spirit and is manifested as the mine of Mercury. It is called Philosophical Lead or Philosophical Azoth, from which we are used to distil the Virgin’s Milk, and it has a venereal property.” Thus showing us how that misunderstanding of ‘Azoth’ equating ‘Mercury’ or ‘Lead’ might have come about, and how the original understanding was pointing at properties and origins more complex.

Curiously enough, between 1972 and 1977, Kenneth Grant does alter his concept of ‘Azoth’ from the previous interpretation which had led him to link Crowley’s ‘Thoth’ with ‘Azoth’ and so with Lovecraft’s ‘Azathoth’, to one that slightly conforms ‘Azoth’ to O9A’s reading of Alchemical texts. Despite the critical alteration to the original error3, which was responsible for linking Azathoth with Azoth in the first place, is never properly corrected although the concepts are discretely separated and no longer associated4.

With thy hands thou shalt touch, and with thy eyes thou shalt see Azoth! The Universal! Which alone, with the internal and external fire in harmonious sympathy with the Olympic Fire, is sufficient for thee: by inevitable necessity, physicochemically united for the consummation of the Philosopher’s Stone” —Khunrath, Amph. Sap. Etern., Isag. in fig. Cap. 8., quoted in M.A. Atwood’s A Suggestive Inquiry Into the Hermetic Mystery (1850).

WS’s mention of the alchemical tractates is relevant insofar as the concept of ‘Azoth’ differs from Crowley’s, and so from the way in which O9A would conjure up a deity named ‘At-Azoth’ (‘an increase of azoth’), with a completely different meaning than that interpreted by Kenneth Grant from Lovecraft’s ‘ Aza-thoth’5 at which point he jumps from using Crowley’s ideas regarding ‘Azoth’ towards a new interpretation based on the partition and the reading of ‘Thoth’ in it. Word games and clever-sounding claims often based on numerology, but nothing more. These poetical conjectures are all right as creative writing, which is what I do for a free-style meaning-finding and creation, but they do not constitute concrete proof of anything.

Furthermore, the O9A’s own definition of At-Azoth as ‘increasing of Azoth’ is free of any link to Lovecraft, even if it is made up by appending the prefix ‘At-‘ to signal ‘an increase of’. And nothing at all links this to Grant’s work, but to the traditional term in the far older tradition of Alchemy, itself based on Greek notions.

Then again, Kenneth Grant never links ‘Atazoth’ to ‘Azathoth’, and the definitions of each in the respective camps appear to mean wildly different things: increase of universal alchemical magnetic unification, versus evil-demon-mother chaos-at-the-centre-of-the-universe Egyptian-magic-god/Hebrew-occult-descended-knowledge-Daath.

I appeal to your reason.


Notes:

1 Handling ‘Atazoth’ within the ‘Nythra Kthunae Atazoth’ context as the traditional O9A’s ‘increasing of Azoth’; while elsewhere, in a local Typhonian-Lovecraftian-mythos ritual, ‘Azathoth’ is mentioned as “center of the cosmos” and “acausal force of Chaos”.

2 In p. 240, for a far more involved discussion of Azoth in Alchemy than that presented by Kenneth Grant (who does more Crowlean numerology and derives his concepts from that line of thinking). Also, in the same work in pages 278 and 279, Evola mentions and discusses Azoth in connection with Basilius Valentinus, who is directly mentioned in O9A’s MS ‘Azoth’, wherein O9A focus on said author’s linking of Azoth with the Graeco-Roman tradition, predating Qabalistic adoptions of it.

3 In The Magical Revival (1972): “Azoth, the alchemical solvent; Thoth, Mercury; Chaos is Hadit at the centre of Infinity (Nuit)”. In contrast, in Nightside of Eden (1977), p. 259: “Azoth: An alchemical term for the fluid. The combined essences of the fully polarized power zones in the human male and female organs“. However, in p. 182 of the latter book, Grant describes ‘Azoth’ as a dissolving secretion of “infinitely corroding light“, and then simply claims that “Lovecraft has conceptualized this notion in terms of his own scientific materialism as Azathoth, the blind and idiot chaos as the centre of Infinity”. Nothing actually maintains this link between ‘Azoth’ and ‘Azathoth’ except Grant’s ignoring the corrected definition of ‘Azoth’ that he includes, while forgetting said link was based on an older concept he gradually leaves behind. In time, only the concept of the link remains, while the link itself is eroded.

4 Kenneth Grant’s Outside the Circles of Time (1980) reads, in its single mention of ‘Azoth’:”The number 401 is that of ATh, ‘essence’, a precise definition of Orissor and a synonym for Azoth, ‘the sum and essence of all, conceived as one’.“I.e., Azoth is no longer linked to ‘Thoth’ and ‘Chaos’. In this book, no mention of ‘Azathoth’ is made. Then, in Hecate’s Fountain (1992) Grant revives Azathoth as “An entity given prominence in the Necronomicon Mythos because it typifies the supreme reflex of Daath in the form of Aza.” In this last book, no mention of ‘Azoth’ appears any longer.

5 In Keneth Grant’s Nightside of Eden (1977), p.182: “The name Azathoth is composed of two distinct concepts, Aza and Thoth“. Wherein ‘Aza’ is defined as “The evil mother of all demons.” and ‘Thoth’ explained as “The Egyptian god of magic whose vehicle is the kaf-ape. In an occult sense Thoth is synonymous with Daath.”

Scorn for the Easy Life

From the compilation of essays by Julius Evola, edited and commented by John B. Morgan for Arktos Media Ltd., titled Metaphysics of War; in ‘”Army” as Vision of the World’, originally published on 30 May 1937 as ‘Sulla “Millizia” quale visione del mondo in ‘Diorama mensile’, Il Regime Fascista:

[begin quote]

Thus the vision of one’s life as membership within an army gives shape to an ethic of its own and to a precise inner attitude which arouses deep forces. On this basis, to seek membership in an actual army, with its disciplines and its readiness for absolute action on the plane of material struggle, is the right direction and the path which must be followed. It is necessary to first feel oneself to be a soldier in spirit and to render one’s sensibility in accordance with that in order to be able to do this also in a material sense subsequently, and to avoid the dangers which, in the sense of a materialistic hardening and overemphasis on the purely physical, can otherwise come from militarisation on the external plane alone: whereas, given this preparation, any external form can easily become the symbol and instrument of properly spiritual meanings.

[end quote]

Draugr Coven of Azanigin: Finding the Sinisterly-Numinous in a Causal Role

Friedrich Nietzsche Beyond Good and Evil


§ An inscrutable thinker


To begin with, and despite the title of the section under which this article is posted, this is not a review, and perhaps not even a commentary on this great work, but rather a series of thoughts around impressions of it held by several groups, in contrast to what may be a more accurate consideration of the man in question and his work. It seems that all that is needed to claim Nietzsche’s ideas as support for an ideological stance is to have somewhat of a thick skin or simply be alright with blunt criticism of anything one disagrees with. The interesting thing about Nietzsche is that he is at once glorified and vilified by people with widely differing ideologies across the full spectrum, with the exception of those explicitly following a Judeo-Christian kind defense of the weak, the mediocre and anything “human, all too human”.

Atheists claim him as one of their own, as they superficially read his words and take them to mean that Nietzsche was the highest kind of independent mind there was. In truth, Nietzsche can be seen criticizing both the dogmatic religious and the modern hubris of the modern atheist, even if he does not name each specifically and in quite such words. The attention of his sledge hammer is directed most of all to the flowering atheism and scientism that was taking Europe by storm at the time of his writing Beyond Good and Evil, and which atheism (or at least crypto-atheism disguised as a kind of philosophical pantheism) and scientism has since become the norm among the educated, and especially among the liberal-minded. Nietzsche dispenses as much injury upon the religious as upon the anti-religious. What he argued for was not the absence of a morality or a tradition, but the distinction between qualities of it, and their origin.

There is MASTER-MORALITY and SLAVE-MORALITY,—I would at once add, however, that in all higher and mixed civilizations, there are also attempts at the reconciliation of the two moralities, but one finds still oftener the confusion and mutual misunderstanding of them, indeed sometimes their close juxtaposition—even in the same man, within one soul.

Aristocrats claim him, even though he devotes large portions of his thought to demolishing any claims of nobility that modern aristocrats might still hold on to. The nobility to which Nietzsche so often alludes is one that is proven through spirit and resulting action thereof: that is, the Will; the Will to Life and Power (alluded to here in the sense that Gwendolyn Taunton has exposed in the past1). His is a nobility that self-creates through this Will, and whose decisions are based upon results and high aims with a vision of centuries, and which does not rest upon vainglorious pride, but rather the question of how to improve. This nobility, however, does reserve a right to determine notions of what should be or what should not be, and there lies the difference between literal nobility, of which Nietzsche speaks, and the allegorical nobility which the humanist modern man would like to believe in.

Purists, and National Socialist types would cringe if they would have actually studied Nietzsche. For, while he deals a significant amount of damage to the Jew, enough to actually garner enough merit to be awarded the title of “anti-semite” he also gives them credit where it is deserved in a manner not unlike Hitler in Mein Kampf, actually, though with different aims and perhaps coming to different practical conclusions. The nobility of action, which was that of a created spirit, could perhaps be better aligned with Julius Evola’s nobility of the spirit, which was not independent of blood but rather worked through and above it in a supra-eugenic manner.

It stands to reason that the more powerful and strongly marked types of new Germanism could enter into relation with the Jews with the least hesitation, for instance, the nobleman officer from the Prussian border: it would be interesting in many ways to see whether the genius for money and patience (and especially some intellect and intellectuality — sadly lacking in the place referred to) could not in addition be annexed and trained to the hereditary art of commanding and obeying — for both of which the country in question has now a classic reputation.

Anarchists claim him, even though he clearly believes only an incredibly small percentage of the population can be truly free, as a result of innate abilities that not all possess and the opportunities to develop them. Rather than push towards the idea of a world where every individual is completely independent, a natural hierarchy is deemed by Nietzsche as inevitable, whatever social constructs humans might like to dream on about. The roots for these lie deep in our nature and in Nature, and attempting to change them is usually a path towards self-annihilation, and an overall sentiment that is anathema to Life itself.

“We truthful ones”—the nobility in ancient Greece called themselves. It is obvious that everywhere the designations of moral value were at first applied to MEN; and were only derivatively and at a later period applied to ACTIONS.

It is then also common to hear people who in their youth upheld Nietzsche as a pillar of their own ideology, only to later reject what they thought his philosophy consisted of, on the basis of them changing the emphasis and focus of their own narrow-minded understanding. The former anti-religious communist becomes a progressive advocate of combinatorics chaos theory and real politik in an attempt to out-intellectualize the philosopher, while of course, distancing himself from the word ‘intellectual’, even as he poses as one. The former modern aristocrat finds the truth about the depth of corrupt modernity and so turns against the philosopher as if he were part of this, and as if tradition as the answer were wholly incompatible with the ideas of Nietzsche. Each of them have only moved from one misapprehension into another, without ever actually having captured the essence of Nietzsche’s thought.

What is he really about, then? Nietzsche was, in fact, terribly honest and direct, even though people seem to insist upon reading him in the most cryptic of ways, perhaps in an attempt to validate themselves and avoid what he was actually urging humanity towards. In truth, it is quite difficult to finish creating a personal picture of Nietzsche, because one has to read his particular takes on so many things before one can even begin to glimpse what his stated proposal of the Übermensch actually entails. The statement “beyond good and evil” entails precisely what it seems to state, rather than an allegorical turn of phrase, a state in which the superior individual does not concern itself with dichotomies and labels, and rather finds the reality of self-determined action beyond them. Since the great majority of humanity functions through and lives by these symbols, faiths and abstractions, the immediate reality, and more importantly, the patterns and not the appearances that constitute this reality2, to which Nietzsche constantly refers eludes them every time as they refuse to see what is in front of them in favor of their own construct thereof.


Footnotes

1 “To Nietzsche, the figure of Dionysus is the supreme affirmation of life, the instinct and the Will to Power, with the Will to Power being an expression of the Will to Life and Truth at its highest exaltation.” —Gwendolyn Taunton, ‘The Black Sun’, Primordial Traditions, Vol I.

2 A notion elegantly and concisely explained by Brett Stevens in his book Nihilism, as a condensation of Nietzsche, Spinoza and Plato, perhaps even through the digestion of others.

Tradition and Antitradition (RATMW 29)

⊕ REVOLT AGAINST THE MODERN WORLD ⊕

Chapter 29

Tradition and Antitradition

tradition-and-antitradition

Julius Evola posits that the most prominent remains of the spirituality of the Golden Age are found in the trail of Aryan traditions, although he also explains how this influence poured into other cultures and mixed with other influences. Furthermore, he is very clear that such a spirituality did not survive in its entirety, nor wholly in its original form. Very early on in this chapter, he provides a clarification regarding the term Aryan, which many would agree deserves some cleaning and explaining. The term has seen some distortion, and the ruling thinking authorities after World War II would have us believe this distortion originated in National Socialist theories. In truth, the distortion has its origin in purposeful propaganda of the enemies of Germany, which was efficiently aimed at making anything coming from the ideological opposition sound ludicrous or just plain barbaric.

Evola’s comment is as follows:

The traces of the Northern and solar spirituality can be found in historical times mainly in the area of the Aryan civilizations. Considering the abuse that has been made of the term aryan in some contemporary milieus, such a term should be used with some reservations; in other words, it should not be made to correspond to a merely biological or ethnic concept (in this regard it would be more appropriate to talk about a boreal or a Northern-Atlantic race, depending on the case at hand), but rather to the concept of a race of spirit, whose correspondence to a physical race has varied from one civilization to another. “Aryan” corresponds more or less to “heroic”; the connection with the origins still exists as a dimmed legacy, but the decisive element is the tendency toward inner liberation and the reintegration in an active and combative form.

—Julius Evola, Revolt Against the Modern World, Chapter 29: ‘Tradition and Antitradition’, p. 231

He goes on to contrast the nature of the Maya as a Demetrian type of civilization (explained here), with the Inca and the Aztec as having a clear solar-warrior influence, especially in the case of the former. Among the Maya, however, there is still the influence of solar legends, but these have been left behind or eclipsed.

It seems that among the Maya originated the figure of the god Quetzalcoatl, who was a solar Atlantean god who came to be worshiped in an emasculated type of cult that was of a peaceful, contemplative, and self-mortifying nature.

(…)

This should probably be related to the invasions of the races of the Nahuatlans, Toltecs, and finally the Aztecs who overcame the Maya and their crepuscular civilization, forming new states. These are the races that retain in a more distinct way the memory of Tula and Aztlan, that is, of the Northern-Atlantic seat, and thus can be considered part of the “heroic” cycle.

Very interesting relations are found between solar legends and the struggle of gods with giants, which figure not only in Scandinavian mythology, but also in South American legends. However, he points out a unique development in the American civilization’s take on this degenerated or changed tradition.

In the most distant memories of these civilizations we find again —as in the Edda— the theme of the struggle against the giants and a recent generation affected by the flood. The themes of holy war and heroic death as a sacrifice that confers immortality, which were found among the Aztecs as well as among northern European stocks or Arab people, in Central and South American civilizations were mixed with some kind of frenzy of human sacrifices; these sacrifices, even in the form of collective slaughters, were performed in order to maintain contact with the divine but with a dark fierce exaltation derived from destroying life, the likeness of which is to be found nowhere else in the world.


§ Judaism


Next comes the second portion of the chapter, devoted to contrasting the Aryan tradition of the east and the Hebrew (anti?) tradition. This is not the first time that a scholarly type, a respected type, such as Evola, echoes passing statements in Mein Kampf, perhaps without knowing it. The angle here is, of course, different, for Julius Evola is tracing traditions, symbols and history  in a succinct manner, Adolf Hitler was stating his thoughts, leaving the work of study, meditating and developing those ideas for himself to the reader.

When referring to the Hebrew cycle, which itself derives from the Semitic with roots in the Chaldean tradition, Evola writes:

Here we find a fundamental and characteristic motif: the transformation into sin of what in the Aryan version of the myth was regarded as a heroic, bold deed, often crowned with success, but that in Gilgamesh’s myth [the Chaldean legend] had a negative outcome only because the hero was caught asleep. In the context of Hebrew Semitism, the one who attempts to take possession of the symbolic Tree is univocally transformed into a victim of woman’s seduction and a sinner.

He further points out characteristic tones and attitudes of the Hebrew tradition which one might discover if reading the Torah, the Talmud and other religious and non-religious treatises by those inheriting this spirit. Evola points out that Hebrew legacy reveals a curious lack of consistency in that it wavers between a little of the heroic here, and then self-penitent later, the warrior there, and then the pitiful, and so on.

These elements are still sporadic and reveal a curious oscillation, which is typical of the Jewish soul, between a sense of guilt, self-humiliation, deconsecration, and carnality and an almost Luciferian pride and rebelliousness.

This wavering and oftentimes contradictory series of attitudes could have its origin in that what we know as Judaism is an intellectual and super imposed set of dogmas that were not the natural outgrowth of a people, but the borrowings and constructions of an intellectual priesthood always trying to subdue a people of different ethnic origins which kept pulling in their own directions, sometimes reverting to their original beliefs.

Not without relation to all this, in ancient Judaism we find a very visible effort on the part of a priestly elite to dominate and coalesce a turbid, multiple, and turbulent ethnical substance by establishing divine Law as the foundation of its “form,” and by making it the surrogate of what in other people was the unity of the common fatherland and the common origins. This formative action, which was connected to sacred and ritualistic values and preserved from the first redactions of the ancient Torah to the elaboration of the Talmuds, the Jewish type arose as that of a spiritual rather than a physical race. But the original substratum was never totally eliminated, as ancient Jewish history shows in the form of the recurrent betrayals of God and his becoming reconciled with Israel. This dualism and the ensuing tension help to explain the negative forms that Judaism assumed in later times.

Here, we might introduce a useful observation. It is hard not to see the relation between this description of the dynamics of Judaism and the goals of globalist Communism with its origins in the Jewish-German writer Karl Marx. Despite the fact that there is always a great effort to divorce him and his ideas from his ethnic background, there is a clear history of these precise ideas being put forward through different theories by Jewish thinkers specifically. Privately, however, the idea of Israel as the chosen people is always maintained, though in evolved and updated form. Unsurprisingly, we see Jewish activists and politicians throughout Europe pushing agendas of multiculturalism while Israel itself is kept strictly race-pure through very harsh polices based on ethnic discrimination.

Moreover, a connection was established with a human type, who in order to uphold values that he cannot realize and that thus appear to him increasingly abstract and utopian, eventually feels dissatisfied and frustrated before any existing positive order and any form of authority ( especially when we find in him, though in an unconscious way, the old idea according to which the state of justice willed by God is only that in which Israel rules) so as to be a constant source of disorder and revolution. Finally we must consider another dimension of the Jewish soul: it is like somebody who, having failed to realize the values typical of the sacral and transcendent dimension in the course of the attempt to overcome the antithesis between spirit and “flesh” (which he exasperates in a characteristic way), eventually rejoices wherever he discovers the illusion and the irreality of those values and whenever he ascertains the failure of the yearning for redemption; this becomes for him some kind of alibi and self-justification.

(…)

The Diaspora, or the scattering of the Jewish people, corresponded to the by-products of the spiritual dissolution of a cycle that did not have a “heroic” restoration and in which some sort of inner fracture promoted processes of an antitraditional character. (…) when this substance returned to a free state and when it separated itself from the “Law,” that is, from the tradition that had formed it, all these factors acted upon the Jewish substratum in a more dramatic and decisive way than in other people.


§ Islam


Evola then turns to Islam, acknowledging the origin and borrowings from Judaism, while emphasizing the contrasting factors.

As in the case of priestly Judaism, the center in Islam also consisted of the Law and Tradition, regarded as a formative force, to which the Arab stocks of the origins provided a purer and nobler human material that was shaped by a warrior spirit.

Furthermore, Evola writes on the uniqueness and independence of Islam from Judaism (something that is not the case with Christianity) in the following three points:

(a) it [Islam] claimed independence from both Judaism and Christianity;

(b) the Kaaba, with its symbolism of the center, is a pre-Islamic location and has even older origins that cannot be dated accurately;

(c) in the esoteric Islamic tradition, the main reference point is al-Khadir, a popular figure conceived as superior to and predating the biblical prophets (Koran 18:59-81).

 And unto the attitudes derived from metaphysical concepts, a very defining characteristic (which some of us may find abhorrent in how destructive it is to the human soul) that sets Islam apart from both Judaism and Christianity:

Islam rejects a theme found in Judaism and that in Christianity became the dogma and the basis of the mystery of the incarnation of the Logos; it retains, sensibly attenuated, the myth of Adam’s fall without building upon it the theme of “original sin.” In this doctrine Islam saw a “diabolical illusion” (talbis Iblis) or the inverted theme of the fall of Satan (Iblis or Shaitan)…

Evola goes on to briefly comment on the completeness of Islam, its ascetism of action and its spiritual purification without the need of a priestly caste.


§ India


 After giving a brief explanation of certain basic tenets of the tradition of people in the land of the Aryans, going through a combination of ethnic and mythological commentaries, Evola repeatedly goes back to the theme of Indian Aryans alluding to blond divinities of white skin. This is, however, in the older mythological recounts.

He explains how the original Aryan tradition of India was one shaped by a warrior, solar and ascetic mentality, that only later morphed into forms that included contemplative methods and the inclusion of priestly caste. This, he claims, was most probably because of the influence of the autochthonous races that the Aryans conquered. Thus, the original high Indo-Aryan tradition has more to do with the Scandinavian spirit, than with the degenerated, life-renouncing traditions with which India is today associated.

the ‘Nordic’ elements within the Indo-Aryan civilization were:

(1) the austere type of the ancient atharvan, the lord of fire, he who first opened the paths through sacrifices, as well as the type of the brahmana, he who dominates the brahman and the gods through his formulas of power;

(2) the doctrine of the absolute Self;

(3) the virile and conscious asceticism oriented to the Unconditioned that also characterized the Buddhist doctrine of awakening;

(4) the doctrine of pure action and heroism expounded in the Bhagavadgita, which was credited with a solar origin and a regal heritage;

(5) the Vedic view of the world as “order” (rta) and law (dharma);

(6) the patriarchical right, the cult of fire, the symbolically rich ritual of the cremation of the dead, the caste system, the cult of truth and honor, the myth of the universal sacred sovereign (cakravartin);

In all these elements we find the traditional poles of “action” and “contemplation” closely intertwined and elevated to a higher meaning.

Thus, Evola contrasts what he refers to as the Vedic cult, based on the ancient spiritual treatises of the Hindu Aryans, and the more confused and orgiastic character of the Southern influences, including the invasion of pantheism into the conceptualizations of spirituality. He discusses some the conceptual confusions, the changes that brought decadence of thought, including the more escapist overtones with which we most associate India today.

The doctrine of reincarnation, understood as the primacy of the destiny of a recurrent and yet ephemeral reappearance in the conditioned world (saṃsāra)—a doctrine not found in the early Vedic period—became predominant. Thus, ascetism aimed at achieving a liberation that had the meaning of escapism rather than a truly transcendent fulfillment.

Buddhism is then seen as a rejection of the degeneration into which the older Aryan spirituality had fallen in its admixture with the beliefs of the lower castes and local customs.

Buddhism promoted a “heroic” theme (the attainment of immortality) over and against the echoes of a primordial, divine self-knowledge that had been preserved in various doctrines of the priestly caste;


§ Iran / Persia


 Julius Evola points out that the Aryan tradition in Iran preserved the action basis of ascetism more firmly than India.

The warrior character of the cult of Ahura Mazda speaks for itself, as do

(a) the ancient Iranian cult of fire, part of which is the well-known doctrine of the hvareno or “glory”;

(b) the rigorous patriarchical system;

(c) the Aryan ethic of truth and faithfulness;

(d) the view of the world as ŗtam and āśā, as cosmos, rite, and order, a view connected to that dominated Uranian principle that eventually led to the metaphysical idea of the empire and the corresponding view of the sovereign of “king of kings,” once the original plurality of the first conquering stocks was overcome.

The rest of the section is devoted to recounting parallels between the Indian and the Iranian Aryan traditions, as well as the connection legend of Zarathustra and its links to the Hyperborean origins of the Aryan spirit.

To end the chapter, we slide from Iranian Aryan tradition into Mithraism, discussing its emphasis on a militaristic  and spiritual brotherhood that was later seen in certain European stocks, and which resurfaces during the crusades with the religious military orders. Finally, Mithraism declines, Evola tells us, when the hero Mithras is transformed into a kind of savior and mediator, instead as the heroic model it originally was.