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Thread: Tradition!

  1. #1
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    Default Tradition!

    It's the latest, hippest, most happening thing.

    Dugin's Fourth Political Theory is all about deconstructing the liberal individual and returning to a Dasein grounded in pre-modern/traditional notions of church, nation, ethnos etc.

    Lots of dodgy sorts reading Evola, for a spiritualised, metaphysical notion of Tradition as distinct from the melange of cultural accretions that make up actual traditions in their historical development. Mors triumphalis, inner jihad, the realisation of a heroic suprapersonal identity.

    One common theme: a longing for depersonalisation. It's framed as a revolt against the narrow conception of humanity as homo economicus, the liberal subject, the good neoliberal citizen. But that revolt takes the form of a radical heteronomy, i.e. submitting to the authority of a suprapersonal ideal (the Church, the Leader, the Volk etc)

    Bonhoeffer writes about this in his Ethics, comparing the Nazi who says "my conscience is Adolf Hitler" with the Christian who says "my conscience is Jesus Christ". In the former case, one is authorised to say "I was following orders" - it's considered heroic to do disgraceful things on command, because it shows a willingness to sacrifice one's own moral integrity for the greater good represented by the Leader. In the latter case, it's a matter of undertaking responsible action (such as, in Bonhoeffer's case, taking part in an assassination plot against Hitler) in the knowledge that one is already morally compromised and the justice of that action is not guaranteed: Christ doesn't give us an alibi or a guarantee that our actions are just because they are undertaken on command, but liberates us to act in irresolvable moral uncertainty (because of the resurrection and the forgiveness of sins).

    The far-right seduces those who are weary of the burden of sustaining their own broken and devalued personality, by offering them heroic transcendence as an imaginary solution. This works at the collective as well as the individual level: Hitler seduced not only individual Germans, but (a large tranche of) "the German people".

    Besides the fact that this is demonic on the face of it, it also as collateral damage diminishes our ability to appreciate and respond creatively to actual traditions, as complex and contradictory things, repositories of image and feeling and diverse understandings of the human situation. Lots of Dissensus-types have a deep love of the esoteric and antinomian, the hermetic and subcultural, counter-current and counter-knowledge. But when all of this is treated just as material for the Traditionalist sage to "discern" the invariant eternal metaphysical kernel within, it loses its texture. Live orgones to stale bullshit. It's the difference between what I understand by "folk music" - the Copper family, Davey Graham, Bert Jansch, Dick Gaughan - and the "neofolk" of Death In June.

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  3. #2
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    I haven't thought of anything intelligent to say yet but I just want to register a vague sense of unease with what I experience as an....I don't know.... Over developed sense of hygiene? A rush to suture the wound. Seal off the contaminated zone. Prevent infection....

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    As synchronicity

    Today, 11:44 AM #96 chava chava is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by pattycakes_ View Post
    Have been down this trail before and not really found anyone interested enough to talk about it. Always end up asking myself if maybe originality is something we could shift the main focus away from. Maybe it's not the be all end all. Maybe it's just the byproduct of capitalism and mass production. People used to be fine listening to the same old shit for centuries before this era. In many parts of the world they still do. We've been over this before, right? Songs older than anyone can remember. Replayed over and over. Still bringing the same joy. Can easily transpose this into the hippy side of my point, which is moving away from a materialist mentality and some form (not sure what exactly) of a return to some prior state of mind. I think my shroom trip confirmed all of this to me. There I was listening to old music and getting as fresh a buzz as I would having heard it for the first time. In fact plenty of the tracks I heard on that trip were new to me, but very much within the confines of the framework. So maybe the problem is us and our externally imposed need for the new. Could this be bypassed? I mean, let's face it, you hear an old classic you haven't heard for years and it catches you. Smile plastered across your face. It's part nostalgia, part just sheer awe at the work. Timeless is timeless.
    You are correct. I snoop around this forum just to watch how far neomania can take you. Innovation is not relevant anymore, keep that to the entrepeneur types. We need a conservative (not nostalgic) approach.

    And btw: If you lot listen to techno/house for rhythmic 'complexity' you have missed the point. If you really want rhythmic complexity in techno listen to the sequences/effects (if its good), not in the literal beat/bass-trickery. Like Terrence Dixon, even some Surgeon trax.

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    I'm too thick to figure out if this diverges from what we're already talking about in the tyranny of 130 thread?

    luka: as a man in bed with a machine sucking blood out of what was an infected wound and the nurses are telling me it's all clear and tonight will be my last doses of antibiotics, I ask thee, how do you always manage such prescient analogies?
    Took a rest stop that wasn't on the schedule

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    are you deliberately trying to summon someone particular back to the forum?!

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    Quote Originally Posted by luka View Post
    I haven't thought of anything intelligent to say yet but I just want to register a vague sense of unease with what I experience as an....I don't know.... Over developed sense of hygiene? A rush to suture the wound. Seal off the contaminated zone. Prevent infection....
    I was thinking about this earlier today, sort of, reading about Brexit - the distressing, confusing, and above all BORING chaos that has followed the referendum. How everybody would like it all to be simplified at a stroke, and how dangerous that is. That sense of wanting to obliterate all complexity and confusion with a hammer blow. I sometimes get that in my personal life. Obliterate all these entanglements and hang the consequences.

    Really this desire or compulsion to simplify things is a primary source of human folly. Our brains weren't built to cope with complexity on the scale we find it in the world.

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    There is a polemic aspect to be sure. And one could object: what's wrong with a little depersonalisation, what's wrong with imaginary solutions? In other contexts I'd champion both...

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    An important distinction: "Tradition" as a term of art in New Right thought means something other than "tradition" in the sense of folk as a "living tradition", or (I think analogously) the "hardcore continuum", or even the relative stability of "traditional" practices and symbolic reference points. It means (from Guenon onwards) a hidden set of invariant features of human reality which have to be discerned through historically-existing traditions, which are usually conceived of as already-degraded echoes of the true Tradition. For example, in The Metaphysics of War, Evola has an argument he wants to make about mors triumphalis, the suprapersonal attitude towards death in combat, which he pursues by considering both the martial ideology of the Crusaders, and that of their Muslim enemies: both point, according to him, in the same direction, towards a suprapersonal conception of martial heroism as triumph over the material baseness of the self, the individual's fear of death and propensity to become a creature of blind self-preserving instinct in situations of mortal peril: such a triumph brings recognition by the pagan (e.g. Roman or Nordic) Gods, or identity with the divine principle. This triumphant self-transcendence is the metaphysical reality that Tradition timelessly encapsulates.

    Well, OK: there's a common theme of self-overcoming in the martial ideology of various different traditions, which undoubtedly reflects a common perception of what heroism entails and accomplishes (and is also a useful motivating fable for people who have to be persuaded to risk their lives in combat). And perhaps from this we can learn something about the levers that control human personality, the potential we have for selfless action, the consciousness-altering character of situations of extreme risk and so on. But the mystical projection of all of this into an out-of-this-world realm of timeless verities is something else again, and it forms the basis of a reading of all other perceptions of the reality of combat - Wilfred Owen's, say, in Dulce et Decorum Est, which angrily repudiates the "old lie" that it is glorious and ennobling to die in battle - as degenerate, as corruptions of the original and timeless heroic principle which we should be trying to recover and reinstate. That's when it becomes ideology - and specifically fascist ideology.

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    Is there any chance of a reading list? Preferably including essays so I'm not devoting months of study to one dissensus thread!

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    I don't think poetix wants to summon the goblin. The goblin was here and it was massively unproductive.

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    I don't mind studying a bit for this thread. I am interested and it does seem 'important' to some degree, and also, I am in the slightly strange position of understanding where a lot of this comes from in terms of the underlying experiences which produce the ideas and the beliefs.

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    If the goblin had wanted to discuss these matters in earnest, he could have done so. I don't believe that was ever the intention.

    I listened to The Metaphysics of War on audiobook, which felt a very peculiar thing to be doing on the train (passing through Lewisham while a blandly English voice expounds Evola's theory of racism through my headphones). There's a pdf of Revolt against the Modern World knocking about online somewhere - it's a whole book, but its individual chapters are fairly short. There are many more books, but I don't intend to read all of them; perhaps one of the later ones which reflects a more quietist stance after it becomes apparent that fascism has lost and Evola isn't going to get to be Chief Metaphysical Guru Man after all.

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    There's this article, from a sympathetic point of view, by Joscelyn Godwin who I think also translated some of Evola: https://www.newdawnmagazine.com/arti...s-evola-really

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    New Dawn. Ancient wisdom. New thinking! Not a publication I would have imagined you subscribing to

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    Mystical experience is often an experience of timelessness, of temporal flow becoming a kind of crystal in which all things are present in simultaneity, and the whole is seen to be patterned in some way even if the pattern is not fully apprehensible. I remember a conversation with you about the kind of vision in which you perceive the book in which the most perfect things are written - you can't read them, but you have the calming and awe-inspiring sense that the book exists and that the ideal of perfect writing is realised somewhere, even if it's out of reach. Evola says in Revolt against the Modern World that in a certain sense the perspective he is trying to indicate cannot be shown, but only remembered: there's definitely an appeal to that form of mystical perception, which is less like "seeing" an object and more like "being shown" or finding oneself within the consciousness of something unobjectifiable.
    Last edited by poetix; 19-06-2019 at 01:27 PM.

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