Today’s essay is a special submission from a friend. Thought up on an Asian beach while watching sunsets and written near the plains of the urheimat, Bronze Age Pervert sends this message on the issue of paganism. This is his first long form piece since the raving success Bronze Age Mindset. Enjoy.
After Trump won there were left wing Witch Covens that tried to place a hex on him or Pence. The altright warlocks, those who roleplay Himmler, meanwhile wish people hokey “Happy Yule to You” and such things. Didn’t you know Christmas was really Teutonic and only belongs to Are People? I know many of you enjoy Ted Kaczynski, I myself haven’t studied him deeply, but I think he made fun of the pagans of our time. They don’t seem to believe it, but to be playing a part, and not very well. Someone else—or was it him?—mentioned they all like only the nice and tame female deities. But the male gods and demons who ask for blood and sacrifice? Well it’s like with the Carpocratians that I mentioned before: were you to promote this in public you’d be quickly crushed by the feds. Same also with the decaf Satanists who have tamed and edited their fearsome god into new age self-help. So neopaganism as understood now seems to many a joke, or to others an embarrassment.
I know the theories of Alex Jones and others, we all want them to be true…at least it’s more flattering to think we’re being fleeced by an international cabal of sexcrazed child-eating real Satanists than what we actually see. The sexless husks who run the American and European permanent states…there has to be something more, or a more fearsome power behind them, no? But what if there isn’t. What if there is no pagan conspiracy thousands of years old, but instead only the gray and beige subhuman species of today, the hueman bred for centuries by Christianity for subjection, just like Nietzsche said? What if this dour atheist detritus is the legacy of historical Christianity, that has receded only to leave behind this rat-being?
And on this matter, the believing Christians of now have little to be proud of as a group when they compare themselves to the neopagans. No I don’t believe pope faggot has any genuine belief in the truth of his own religion: he refuses the red shoes…the red shoes that would signal his readiness for martyrdom, which is the surety of faith. Well, he’s a Jesuit. The Lutherans and many of the Protestants have churches that are just as debased, Anglican churches are nothing but LGBT community centers for exhibitions of Hindoo dance and so on. How is the roleplaying about Jesus being a lame modern ghey pacifist, and Christianity being “noble” spiritual cuckoldry, any less embarrassing than the neopagans? And among the online “Trad Cath” brigades there are just as many embarrassing roleplayers, and as many active feds, as among the neopagans. Many of you have hope for the Orthodox, not knowing that this church has always been submissive to the state: if change in regime in Russia as the globalists want, church would switch its beliefs.
As for the many altright Jews reading this, you know very well that your religion and the Jewish nation as a whole is less cohesive and more pozzed than followers of Kevin MacDonald claim. The Reform sect is a gay social club, the chief of Conservative variety declared that being a homo is cool if there’s no buttsex (his daughter is a dyke). Orthodox grils believe that sodomy with negros is OK before marriage because of rules and loopholes. For now the only hope for you is with the Haredi, just like among the Christians it is with the Amish, the Mennonites and similar hermit peoples. But Ron Unz says he hired student to verify Israel Shahak’s claims, and that they are true: such people worship multiple deities and use spells. So they may be after all the real pagans.
What then? Among all this confusion and degradation of modern sects I make brief explanation of old paganism and neopaganism, so that you see the real thing, and the varieties, and don’t judge it by the embarrassing things you see around us and online.
For all the jokes about it, there is a reason many, and many on the right are attracted to it, who seek rejuvenation of the West, or who seek a new path. And in history it comes back, in real and luminous form, at certain times…so…it will not go away…
The spiritual father of neopaganism of the true and powerful variety is Nietzsche. He had many followers in the first part of 20 th Century all across Europe. They understood what he said, where the academics and idiots after 1950 mostly do not, but try to obfuscate. In our own time there are men like Dominique Venner who also understood what Nietzsche said, and the meaning of neopaganism. The scholar Karl Lowith, who was Jewish but a Nietzschean (as many were), said somewhere that neopaganism is exoteric Nietzscheanism. And it was so in his time. What this means?
In suicide note Dominique Venner speaks of our European memory that goes back to Homer. And this is what means, both him, and Nietzsche. It is what meant also for ancient Greeks, who used Homer as traditional Christians have used the Bible. Homer and his heroic and luminous vision of the Bronze Age is the hope of this kind of neopagan. Such men reject the small-souled liberal and democrat and the spiritual shopkeeper and Last Man and slave of modern age. They admire the great men of antiquity and see various periods—Archaic Greece, republican Rome, parts of imperial age Rome—as the apex of mankind. The time when the highest human specimens and happiest human life was possible. They see Caesar and Alexander and Scipio and all the great heroes of antiquity, both of history and from Homer—how can they not be amazed! And how is such life possible now? But maybe it’s possible. This is their guide, and its regeneration in their own time is their task. The best among such neopagans know that a full revival of this vision is impossible, at least not directly, so they try to adjust what is possible in their own age. This is the true meaning of “neopaganism” and it has nothing to do with pretending to scream to Wotan in forest, roleplay worship of a piece of holy dung, or any such things; those are at most an occasional cosmetic flourish or affectation. When you see the glory of Diomedes and his transfiguration into lion of divine light in Iliad, then question comes to neopagan, how to recapture this height in our time.
This is what might be called moral-political neopaganism and it has a long tradition in the West. It is not just modern phenomenon. What else is the Renaissance? And if you don’t believe this, see Machiavelli:
In thinking, therefore, of whence it should happen that in those ancient times the people were greater lovers of Liberty than in these times, I believe it results from the same reason which makes men presently less strong, which I believe is the difference between our education and that of the ancients, founded on the difference between our Religion and the ancients. For, as our Religion shows the truth and the true way [of life], it causes us to esteem less the honors of the world: while the Gentiles [Pagans] esteeming them greatly, and having placed the highest good in them, were more ferocious in their actions. Which can be observed from many of their institutions, beginning with the magnificence of their sacrifices [as compared] to the humility of ours, in which there is some pomp more delicate than magnificent, but no ferocious or energetic actions. Theirs did not lack pomp and magnificence or ceremony, but there was added the action of sacrifice full of blood and ferocity, the killing of many animals, which sight being terrible it rendered the men like unto it. In addition to this, the ancient Religion did not beatify men except those full of worldly glory, such as were the Captains of armies and Princes of Republics. Our Religion has glorified more humble and contemplative men rather than men of action. It also places the highest good in humility, lowliness, and contempt of human things: the other places it in the greatness of soul, the strength of body, and all the other things which make men very brave. And, if our Religion requires that there be strength [of soul] in you, it desires that you be more adept at suffering than in achieving great deeds.
And he says many other similar things. (Of course he goes on to say that Christianity has been “misinterpreted” in his time according to weakness and wickedness, and so to excuse real Christianity from that practiced in his age. His abuse is directed mostly against the priesthood and the priestly type and priestly spirit, not the religion itself. But whether he believed this, or whether he couldn’t go so far as to embrace Hellenism fully, who knows?) And in any case you see how Schopenhauer mentions the examples of Giordano Bruno and Spinoza, men who as he says “had their home on the Ganges,” ancient pagans reborn in their time, abused and burned or persecuted by vulgar and bigoted priests. I mean to say that there were many like Machiavelli and Bruno, on various points of this spectrum, who sought a revival of the spirit of antiquity. And all the paintings and sculptures of Venus and the other gods and goddesses and heroes of Homer and the other Greeks, what else was this?
Well that’s real neopaganism, not the kind that can be attacked as roleplay or kitsch. If you are truly inspired by Wotan, work to be Wagner or Botticelli, don’t try to replicate rituals to which you have no direct connection. It is great artists who can awaken this luminous vision and who can rekindle heroism and beauty in its right forms.
This moral-political-artistic neopaganism is often accompanied by a kind of philosophical neopaganism. And you see the first of this variety among the ancient pagans of Roman time who were reacting against Christianity. Its main public figure was Emperor Julian, called “the Apostate,” but there were a few others. Emperor Julian grew up a Christian but rejected this new religion in favor of the old gods of Rome and Greece. He was maybe the “first” neopagan. But he could never actually return to that primal faith in any innocent way. Instead he reinterpreted the gods in a philosophical sense, you can think of, as “symbols” of various physical phenomena or psychological states, or you can think of as “archetypes.” This is what Jungians and people like Peterson also do, of course in very different way.
I am not too fond of this kind of neopaganism. But it can work to make it “understandable” and “respectable” to people who are secular and also actually to believing Christians and those of other religions, who can now appreciate a kind of philosophized or psychologized version of pagan belief. The reason I don’t like this kind of neopaganism is because it’s rationalized and therefore in embracing it you miss both the full aesthetic and direct experience that an ancient pagan might have had, the spiritual aspect is actually completely gone. And also because this approach can be uncoupled entirely from the very potent moral-political revival I mentioned above. In fact Emperor Julian attempted, with full political and military force, to reestablish paganism as the state religion. And if you read his writings you see he also believed in what I have called the moral-political neopaganism: he extols the great men and generals of Greco-Roman antiquity, and contrasts this to the small men and slaves of the Old and New Testaments. But as to this approach of reinterpreting the gods rationally by itself, this “philosophical and rational neopaganism,” this can in principle be compatible with almost any other religion (as historical “oddity”) or political arrangement. Even the modern liberal bugman can embrace this charming vision. Why of course “Apollo” only represents order and measure and self-restraint, and Kronos is just the force of “Time”… and so everything becomes a toothless allegory and symbol.
Thus you see three attempts at neopaganism: the very ancient, starting with Emperor Julian and some others. The Renaissance itself. And the early 20 th Century and late 19 th Century where various artists and men of action followed Nietzsche and a couple of others (it had already begun before Nietzsche, with Wagner musics and others, but he made it explode). And all three were primarily a moral-political force, an attempt to reestablish the moral vision of Homer, and also an artistic and aesthetic force, an attempt to reestablish the luminous and brilliant art of Archaic and Classical Greeks, or to establish new art forms based on the pagan sense of heroism, speed and action. There was also a philosophical component that was very serious, but it wasn’t the part about trying to find rational explanations for the gods and myths, or to reinterpret them as allegories and life stories. No, the philosophical vision of Nietzsche and others sought to reestablish the pagan sense of time as cyclical, and to find the very primal ideas of matter and thought unmolested by the strains that had led to modern decay. To rediscover again unspoiled nature.
As part of this concern with modern decay the neopagans of all three periods I mentioned have great hostility to Christianity. They don’t see how Christianity can offer a different path from the decay they see around them. Many like Nietzsche and Venner have great respect for Christianity of Europe in its time of ascent. But the modern bugman in some sense “triumphed” over Christianity while in another sense he was not its negation but its son and child. The medieval European military aristocracy, the knighthood was Christian but as Venner and Nietzsche and many others never tire of saying, they had very deep quarrel with the priests and their role in this religion was very uncomfortable. We like to roleplay about Deus Vult. But look at how the priest Bartolome de las Casas throws abuse on the Spanish knighthood for their conquest of the New World. Well that attitude was very common and the quarrel between king and church, knighthood and priesthood ran deeper than the “jocks vs. nerds” meme. There is then the feeling among the many neopagans that Christianity favors the dumb, the small in spirit, the bugman and that it hates and wants to corrupt and destroy the higher specimens. This is why they’re hostile. But I’m not here to beat this old path. Neopagans reject Christianity, but reject it for very different reasons than the atheist or liberal does.
I believe that in this last point may be found basis for a truce. As the neopagan vision of Nietzsche and Venner hasn’t completely conquered the right and the youth, and since the majority of men who stand for manliness and excellence are believing Christians, I believe it is foolish for neopagans or those who seek the revival of Greece to continue anti-Christian diatribe. But also on the other side the Christians must recognize a cousin in the neopagan and an ally in fight against common enemy. True traditional Catholics must learn to hate the atheist, the liberal, and the bugman more than the bogeyman of “the pagan.”
There is in this also personal story. I grew up without any religion. It is hard for Americans to understand this, because all Americans, especially atheist, grow up with very strong religious moral code. Or, I don’t know where they think “human rights” and their morality, to which they have fanatic devotion, comes from. But I grew up without any of this. Some time around when I was thirteen I began to read Plato and others, and later Nietzsche. I never had any feeling for or against Christianity to begin with, from my upbringing. I was simply indifferent to it, and its theology and ideas and imagery never appealed to me. I became hostile to an idea of Christianity from reading Nietzsche and the other writers I named. But this hostility was never personal. Then I was shocked when later I met people, most of them Jews, who expressed similar ideas as Nietzsche, or somehow glommed on to this neopagan sensibility, or some of its varieties. But then I found out such people were not genuine, but only hated Christianity out of ethnic animus and resentment, because they had grown up that way. Theirs was not a genuine and objective position, but a carry-over of a childhood family teaching and parochial bigotry. I found this highly disgusting and sought to distance myself from this. Therefore I have a personal dislike and distrust of anti-Christianity. And in our time when Christians are attacked by the Last Man, I think it is important for neopagans not to join in such attack…whatever we may believe about the historical origin of the Last Man.
It is also true that Christianity itself preserved much of ancient pagan aesthetics and sensibility in the Middle Ages. Even today Catholic festivals continue pagan festivals, and the devotees and days of saints are much like ancient feasts to various gods and their cults; especially in the Mediterranean, where the warm climate made the demands of life easy so the people had plenty of time to beautify life this way. Also the faith is somewhat versatile, and at least in theory open to a reinterpretation.
I now mention a third variety of “neopaganism,” which is one that I myself hold dear, but which is hardly ever mentioned in these fights. Maybe because so few have access to it and because it’s not easily propagandized one way or the other. And the people who do have access to it are often too shy to talk about it, for good reason. I’ll try not to be too indiscreet.
You could call this an innocent apprehension of the hidden demons and gods inside nature and things. Maybe it is the precursor, this feeling, to the artistic revival of paganism, I don’t know. But it is an innate sensation, a natural animism. I tried briefly to discuss it in book. I have had images appear to me in daydreams since I was small boy, that were very vivid and specific. I know others who have had the same. Then also a sensation of spirits inhabiting animals and inanimate objects too, with a reverence for some, and a pity when others are mistreated — Houellebecq mentions his pity for a line of coats. This is not a sensation informed by any rational doxy or theoretical or theological belief. And I’ve always firmly rejected any such interpretations of these events because I found they didn’t fit. So to such sensibility it is very offensive or stupid when people try to actually go to forest and pretend they worship Wotan or Hermes or whoever…nor have I seen those old gods or any other such specifically that I can name. Those gods are dead or asleep. If you want to see what this feeling is like, watch some of David Lynch. I believe that is what this natural, innocent and innate paganism looks like in our time, when presented naïvely: he simply shows the demons and acknowledges them, doesn’t pretend to know who they are, what they want, or even how to worship or assuage them. And they look terrifying and surreal for us, and not at all like what you’d expect.
I have seen some things like this since I was small boy, and have felt the presence of one in particular. I feel that he will make a great show one day and erupt into the world.
But for any old paganism to be restored, one must let go of the hokey opinions about what real pagans believed in, and what they thought important. When Diocletian was convinced to wipe out Christianity, why did he do it? The Oracle at Delphi told him the god could no longer give direction and no longer answer: because the world was too full of the impious. Then if you read Mishima and other genuine pagans with true understanding of how this natural religion works, you see the great attention he pays to oracles and divination and augury. It is the foundation also of the highest and most sacred rites in Shinto, as of every other natural faith. The first step then, for genuine neopagans, if they seek actually the religious aspect, would be the reestablishment of a genuine and accurate oracle. The establishment of genuine oracle is first step to any new faith.
Then much later the demons and gods will show themselves, but not in any way you would expect, nor by any names you recognize. And it will be they, not you, who will make signs and establish the proper form of worship, and even the meaning and purpose of such worship.