“The so-called 'Left-Hand Path' - that of Kaulas, Siddhas and Viras - combines the... Tantric worldview with a doctrine of the Übermensch which would put Nietzsche to shame... The Vira - which is to say: the 'heroic' man of Tantrism - seeks to sever all bonds, to overcome all duality between good and evil, honor and shame, virtue and guilt. Tantrism is the supreme path of the absolute absence of law - of shvecchacarī, a word meaning 'he whose law is his own will'." ― Julius Evola, The Path of Cinnabar.

“It is necessary to have “watchers” at hand who will bear witness to the values of Tradition in ever more uncompromising and firm ways, as the anti-traditional forces grow in strength. Even though these values cannot be achieved, it does not mean that they amount to mere “ideas.” These are measures…. Let people of our time talk about these things with condescension as if they were anachronistic and anti-historical; we know that this is an alibi for their defeat. Let us leave modern men to their “truths” and let us only be concerned about one thing: to keep standing amid a world of ruins.” ― Julius Evola, Revolt Against the Modern World: Politics, Religion, and Social Order in the Kali Yuga.

“We are born into this time and must bravely follow the path to the destined end. There is no other way. Our duty is to hold on to the lost position, without hope, without rescue, like that Roman soldier whose bones were found in front of a door in Pompeii, who died at his post during the eruption of Vesuvius because someone forgot to relieve him. That is greatness. That is what it means to be a thoroughbred. The honorable end is the one that can not be taken from a man.” ― Oswald Spengler, Man and Technics: A Contribution to a Philosophy of Life.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Hermetic Chaos Syndrome

From the entry on "Hermeticism" in The Dictionary of The History of Ideas:

The unorthodoxy of Hermetic thought is often over-looked by scholars who detour the dark esotery of pre-twentieth-century thought by insisting that symbols of darkness and chaos, serpents, monsters, and the like, were readily Christianized (Walker, 1953). If this were so, Renaissance art, for example, would differ little from medieval art. Evidence indicates, however, that in a number of Renaissance works the powers of darkness frequently suggest, not destruction, but fruitfulness, joy, and energy. One may say, in fact, that the bloodstream of art, paling at the close of the medieval and then the neo-classical and Victorian periods, is revitalized by a transfusion from sources of the ancient Near East....

In substance, the Hermetica shares a number of unorthodox features with ancient cosmogonies of Egypt, Babylonia or Chaldea, Persia, and the early gnostic sects. Compiled from the ancient cosmogonies, a list of nine such unorthodox features can be used now to show the nature of the “chaos syndrome”:

(1) Creation is the result of a cataclysmic or sexual encounter between at least two major forces. The world is created from preexisting chaos.

(2) Creation includes elements of the grotesque and the irrational.

(3) Mutability, darkness, mud are life-producing.

(4) Serpent and hybrid creatures, symbols of energy, are often deified.

(5) Eternal Recurrence: Creation is an ever-renewing process. As a living body, the world is perpetually renewing itself.

(6) “As above, so below”: the doctrine of corre spondence: the divine descends to participate in human affairs, alternating with humans as civilizing agents, involved in wandering, lamentation, and suffering as part of the creative process.

(7) Superbia: Man is exalted to the level of divinity.

(8) The Valuable Descent: a descent into the depths, an encounter with monsters, provides the revitalizing experience sought by men and gods.

(9) Stylistically, “chaos” writings are lavish as well as confusing.

In contrast, the orthodox view sees chaos as a force of evil only. Its God, without partner or helper, creates from absolutely nothing, in a smooth and orderly manner. Energy symbols are discredited, and the world, created just once, is headed for ultimate dissolution. Separated from God, man is essentially worthless, limited as an artist to imitating what he sees, and warned to strive for rhetorical bareness. Such ideas predominate, not only in church fathers like Tertullian and Augustine, and in Renaissance poets like Drayton, Thomas Heywood, and Jonson, but in modern religious leaders and non-Christian thinkers as well. For, despite the decline of Christianity today, a negative attitude towards chaos continues to dismiss disorder and mystery as evil and, in the name of order and truth, encourages a chronic dread of dissenting groups and strange ways of thought.

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