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New Age "Asiatic" thought ... is establishing itself as the
hegemonic ideology of global capitalism. (Zizek)

Friday, April 14

baron julius evola: yet another esoteric nutter

Let's kick this one off with an assessment by John Michell, author of The New View Over Atlantis -- that's a view over the book's cover there below. Keep two things in mind here; he is neither 1) the John Mitchell who got busted in the Nixon thing, nor 2) Edgar Mitchell, the NASA astronaut turned New Age whackjob who founded the Institute of Noetic Sciences. No. He's the other New Age whackjob who got leyed in 1969 and hasn't stopped talking about it since.
Evola looks beyond man-made systems to the eternal principles in creation and human society. The truth, as he sees it, is so totally at odds with the present way of thinking that it shocks the modern mind.
That's called out as a blurb on the Amazon page for Evola's Men Among the Ruins: Post-War Reflections of a Radical Traditionalist. Personally, I'd never heard of Michell before reading that quote, but being curious, I clicked over to The New View Over Atlantis -- the old view presumably having been the book's first incarnation in 1969. I mean, whoever he was, Atlantis is always good for laughs -- and more important to my present purposes, a surefire magnet for the kind of game I'm tracking. I'm glad I went and looked.

Turns out the book is not so much about Atlantis as it is about ancient astronomers, "ley lines," and Stonehenge. But hey, why quibble? More interesting to me were the links I dug up to some of his other work, including a book called Confessions of a Radical Traditionalist. Following is a longish passage from that book, but it says more about Julius Evola than I could convey in as many words. We'll return to Evola more than once -- and we've mentioned him already in these previous installments:

For now, try wrapping your head around this "defense" of Evola by a man beloved of many New Age types, who clearly sees himself as continuing the "Tradition" (a sort of code word also discussed in one or more of the above listed posts). This is from pp. 146-47 of Confessions of a Radical Traditionalist, a page or two into a chapter titled "A Rad-Trad Englishman and an Italian." Michell has just described a vision of the good life held by one William Corbett (1763-1835). He continues...
It comes as a shock to be reminded how closely this picture resembles the ideal images of fascism. But there is a world of difference between the gross literalism and inhumanity of a totalitarian system and the high idealism of a radical traditionalist. That difference was emphasized by Julius Evola (1898-1974), the Italian rad-trad philosopher. Though idolised by Mussolini, he was fiercely critical of the Fascist system -- and of man-made systems generally. He rejected Darwin, and the entirety of modern, secular thinking, in favor of the traditional, classical world-view. Like Socrates, he perceived a divine order in Creation, and he acknowledged a tradition, based upon that order and passed down from the great civilizations of antiquity. The old tradition, and the virtues of honesty, justice, courage, piety and noble conduct associated with it, were the main elements in Evola's reactionary revolution.

In 1951 he was arrested and brought to trial in Rome for "glorifying Fascism." The prosecutor made a farce of the proceedings by refusing to specify objectionable passages in Evola's writings, saying it was a question of his tone or "general spirit." The trial collapsed and Evola was fully acquitted.

Most of us are familiar with that sort of accusation -- against one's tone, attitude or general spirit. Bullies and witch-hunters are always on the lookout for fascism, racism, sexism, elitism, loyalism, religious sentiments or whatever is considered most incorrect at the time. In Evola they find their ideal victim. In his most powerful book, Revolt Against the Modern World, he spoke of manliness, mystical sovereignty and legitimate authority. He spoke also about occult politics and the collusions between democrats and demagogues to effeminise society and dumb it down. Inevitably, he brought in the Jews, associating the Jewish mentality with materialism. That makes him, if you like, an anti-Semite. But he was not speaking racially, or against the Jewish tradition which he respected. His reference was to a state of mind, occurring in Jews and Gentiles alike: the state of mind that is reflected in the chaos of the modern world.

Allow me to say that that makes him an anti-Semite even if you don't like.

I'll have more up here soon about Evola and his many pals and well wishers, including Mircea Eliade, Alain de Benoist, and the ever fascinating Miguel "Nazi UFOs from Antarctica" Serrano. Stay tuned...



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