Ok

En poursuivant votre navigation sur ce site, vous acceptez l'utilisation de cookies. Ces derniers assurent le bon fonctionnement de nos services. En savoir plus.

mercredi, 29 avril 2015

Knut Hamsun, pagano europeo contro Mammona

hamsunknut.jpg

Knut Hamsun, pagano europeo contro Mammona

Autore:

Ex: http://www.centrostudilaruna.it

Quando si crede nell’individuo come persona umana e non come numero imbastardito, si è a disagio nella società dei costruttori di artifici economici. Quando si ama la propria terra natìa, fatta di boschi, paesaggi, volti conosciuti, si lenzi di natura profonda, ci si sente estranei al caos volgare della massa cosmopolita. E quando si crede alla dignità dell’uomo, al suo onore di vivere in sintonia col creato e in armonia con una vita semplice e onesta, nella comunità dei simili solidali, si avverte repulsione per il mondo sub-umano dei trafficanti di denaro, dei lucratori del lavoro altrui, della setta oscura che giorno e notte tesse la tela delle frodi finanziarie e degli inganni ideologici umanitari.

kh1.jpgKnut Hamsun fu di questo stampo: l’uomo europeo eterno. Un figlio della sua terra, la Norvegia, che portò sempre nel cuore anche quando, da giovane, visse a lungo in quell’altro mondo, quel vero e proprio mondo alla rovescia che erano già alla fine dell’Ottocento gli Stati Uniti: la terra promessa della schiuma dell’umanità, dove alcuni avventurieri senza scrupoli erano diventati magnati e grandi capitalisti, dando fondo con l’ottusità fanatica che è tipica del talmudista quacchero a tutto un prontuario di egoismi utilitaristi, in ossequio alla legge oscena del profitto. Hamsun ebbe modo di conoscere bene e da vicino il concetto di “libertà” in uso nella repubblica stellata, i suoi metodi di “umanitarismo” massonico e la sua pratica di perversione acquisitiva. Conobbe di persona l’ignoranza e la rozzezza intellettuale, la povertà spirituale e l’arroganza di un ammasso umano che con l’idea tradizionale europea di popolo non ha mai avuto nulla in comune.

Un paese che, eternamente con la Bibbia in mano, praticò e pratica lo schiavismo molto più a Nord che a Sud e sia in casa propria che in quelle altrui e fin dagli esordi, erigendo quella spaventosa società di paria alienati che è la cosmopoli industriale, nella cui fornace sin dalle origini venivano gettati bambini, donne, negri e immigrati di ogni sorta, al fine di costruire un freddo Leviatano, al cui vertice una ristretta congrega di arricchiti dominava già allora con metodi discriminatori una massa enorme di manipolati. La volgarità dei gusti americani fu ben tratteggiata dal giovane Hamsun, il quale, fin dai suoi tempi, riconobbe la sostanza inferiore di una mentalità che rifiuta l’intelligenza in favore dell’astuzia, non riconoscendo il genio creatore ma solo la scaltrezza necessaria al parvenu per far fortuna con la frode, per accumulare denaro e potere.

In La vita culturale dell’America moderna (1889) il giovane Hamsun avanzava osservazioni che ognuno di noi, a così tanti decenni di distanza, farebbe bene a rimeditare: «Dal punto di vista dello spirito, l’America è in realtà una nazione terribilmente sorpassata. Possiede uomini d’affari energici, investitori scaltri, speculatori temerari, ma ha troppo poco spirito, troppo poca intelligenza… In America si è sviluppata una vita che ha come unici scopi il procacciamento del cibo, l’acquisizione di beni materiali e l’accumulo di patrimoni. Gli Ameriani sono talmente presi dalla loro corsa al guadagno che su questa si concentra tutto il loro ingegno e ogni loro interesse orbita intorno al profitto. I cervelli si assuefanno a lavorare solo con valori e sfilze di numeri, i pensieri non hanno occupazione più gradita di quella offerta dalle diverse operazioni finanziarie».

La miseria morale di un anti-popolo suddiviso fra padroni-detentori della ricchezza e massa anonima istigata all’unica legge del consumo, veniva vista da Hamsun come la degenerazione e il rovesciamento dell’ideale europeo di civiltà. Era già qualcosa di morto nonostante fosse appena nato, qualcosa di corrotto e superato. La sindrome del produttivismo ha generato incoltura e istinti volgari, in un mare di piattezza dozzinale, dove ogni barlume di quella poca cultura ricevuta di seconda mano dall’Europa diventava, allora come oggi, “merce di strada”, giornalismo popolano, sensazionalismo plebeo, una merce priva di ogni stile, qualità, valore: «In America – scriveva Hamsun – non c’è possibilità di sviluppo per le cose che non possono essere misurate in numeri e non c’è, quindi, nessuna speranza che possa nascere una vita intellettuale… Gli Americani sono uomini d’affari, nelle loro mani tutto diventa operazione economica, ma sono gente poco spirituale e la loro cultura è pietosamente inesistente». L’America ha riclato gli sbandati di mezzo mondo, ne ha fatto dei cittadini, ma cittadini americani, e nulla di più. Essi sono un deflagrante miscuglio di iattanza anglo-calvinista e di carenza valoriale, di stampo apolide e cosmopolita. Il tutto, pericolosamente rimestato, ha prodotto il paradossale etnocentrismo statunitense, un’acida infusione di fondamentalismo biblista, insolenza xenofoba, fanatismo provinciale. Hamsun sottolineava con forza questo grossolano oltranzismo: «L’assoluta ignoranza nei riguardi dei popoli stranieri e dei loro meriti è uno dei difetti nazionali dell’America. Gli Americani non studiano il grande sapere universale nelle loro common schools. La sola geografia autorizzata in queste scuole è quella americana, la sola storia autorizzata è quella americana – il resto del mondo viene liquidato con un’appendice di un paio di pagine». Ed è infatti risaputo che le famose università americane, senza la cattura a pagamento dei migliori cervelli europei, sarebbero solo vuote cattedrali di ignoranza e di incolto provincialismo.

kh2.jpgHamsun elogiava l’autoctonia, non il provincialismo; l’autoctonia di chi, avendo come lui molto viaggiato, a ragion veduta riconosce l’importanza delle radici, della Heimat, del contatto con le sane e immutabili origini. Nato nel 1860, Knut Hamsun fin dalla giovinezza fece tutti i mestieri, da calzolaio a maestro elementare a spaccapietre, finché la sua sete un po’ vichinga per gli spazi non lo portò in America dove, anche qui, nonostante il suo animo sensibile e le sue doti di poeta e scrittore, non si peritò di fare il venditore ambulante o il cocchiere: spirito di viandante, non emigrante ignaro e disperato, ma uomo ben cosciente della sua dignità. Tanto che dopo molto aver visto e conosciuto in America, in Europa e in Asia, se ne tornò alla sua terra e di questa, sentita come Madre-patria e scrigno di identità, divenne uno dei massimi cantori che abbia avuto la narrativa europea. Amore per le proprie radici, culto della terra madre, devozione panteista verso la natura e le sue segrete energie, esaltazione della vita semplice dell’uomo dei campi, di colui che difende la propria personalità dagli assalti della violenta società progressista.

Questi i valori di Hamsun. Da uomo antico, egli disprezzava le “mezze culture” che hanno partorito l’industrialismo e la febbre mercantile; in lui il prestigio aristocratico del “signore della terra” è una celebrazione di potenza poetica, che ne fa, insieme ad altri ingegni (pensiamo a Pound, a d’Annunzio, a Heidegger), uno degli ultimi grandi testimoni della civiltà europea. Il suo soggettivismo (che non è individualistico egoismo alla liberale, ma eroismo faustiano di un figlio del popolo) e il suo lirismo naturalistico lo innalzano a figura degna di un paganesimo mistico, che si leva in una vibrante condanna della razza dei profittatori.

Rude anima nordica, la sua, ma capace di passione, di sensuale commozione e di dolci abbandoni, alla maniera della natura, che sa essere ad un tempo selvaggia e tenera. Hamsun era capace di misterici trasporti, conversava con piante e pietre, avvertiva presenze sacre nei silenzi notturni: «È la luna, dico in silenzio, con passione, è la luna! E il mio cuore batte per lei con nuovi battiti. Dura qualche minuto. Un alito di vento, un vento sconosciuto viene a me, una strana pressione dell’aria. Che cosa è? Mi guardo attorno e non vedo nessuno. Il vento mi chiama e l’anima mia assentendo si piega a quel richiamo ed io mi sento sollevato dalle realtà circostanti, stretto a un invisibile petto, i miei occhi si inumidiscono, io tremo. Dio è in qualche luogo vicino e mi guarda…», così scrisse in Pan (1894), uno dei suoi capolavori.

A un simile poeta, tuttavia, la loggia dei fabbricanti d’oro volle riservare l’infamia.Vincitore nel 1920 del premio Nobel per la letteratura, Hamsun aveva aderito fin da giovane al movimento neoromantico nazionalista norvegese, che conciliava laengtam (la volontà inflessibile) con staenming, l’armonia cosmica in cui uomo e macrocosmo si fondono. Amico della Germania ma anche della cultura russa, vide con favore l’ascesa del nazionalsocialismo tedesco, ravvisando in Hitler i tratti del vendicatore della tradizione europea contro i manipolatori economici e finanziari e il creatore di una nuova religiosità di stirpe. Resa visita al Führer nel 1943 al Berghof, collaborò col regime di Quisling, difese il progetto europeo con l’arma della sua penna. E quando Hitler morì tragicamente, lungi dal piegare la testa dinanzi ai vincitori, su un quotidiano di Oslo ne celebrò la figura di «guerriero in lotta per l’umanità, un apostolo del diritto dei popoli e un riformatore del più alto rango».

kh3.jpgCe n’era abbastanza perché, alla maniera con cui gli americani e i sovietici usavano trattare i loro oppositori intellettuali, nel 1945 venisse giudicato pazzo e rinchiuso in manicomio, ripetendo la medesima via di passione imposta a Ezra Pound. Nel suo libro Per i sentieri dove cresce l’erba, scritto negli ultimi tempi della sua vita, Hamsun così ricordava la dichiarazione che aveva reso coraggiosamente davanti ai giudici: «Mi era stato detto che la Norvegia avrebbe occupato un posto eminente nella grande società mondiale germanica in gestazione; chi più chi meno, allora tutti ci credevamo. E anch’io vi avevo creduto… Pensate: la Norvegia del tutto indipendente, rilucente di luce propria nell’estremo nord dell’Europa! E quanto al popolo tedesco, come pure al popolo russo, io li vedevo come astri rilucenti. Codeste due potenti nazioni mi possedevano e pensavo che esse non avrebbero deluso le mie speranze!».

Il sogno europeo di Hamsun parve abominio ai suoi giudici democratici asserviti ai nuovi padroni, la sua passione per la patria eterna proprio dai traditori venne spacciata per tradimento. Condannato nel 1948 a un risarcimento in denaro per i suoi “crimini”, Hamsun fu rovinato moralmente e materialmente e, ultranovantenne, venne infine rinchiuso in un ospizio e ufficialmente diffamato. Ma ciò che a noi resta di lui, e che i suoi persecutori non poterono cancellare, è l’esempio di una vita libera e nobile, di un uomo che non ha piegato la schiena neppure nella sventura. Resta la sua religione della vita, del lavoro onesto e silenzioso, la sua mistica della solitudine creatrice, del senso panico della natura primordiale e del popolo che vive in sintonia con la sua terra. Restano i valori di uomo della tradizione che attraversa la degenerazione della modernità senza farsene contagiare, ma anzi rinsaldando la volontà di opporre la qualità alla quantità, la forza di un Io integro allo sfaldamento coscienziale dell’alveare massificato: tutto questo è racchiuso nei suoi molti romanzi, da Fame (1890) a Terra favolosa (1903), da Un viandante canta in sordina (1909) fino a Il cerchio si chiude (1936). La lotta sostenuta a viso aperto e per tutta la vita da quest’uomo antico e insieme moderno appare oggi un severo e insieme trascinante insegnamento per tutti coloro che non vogliono imboccare la strada della resa di fronte ai dominatori cosmopoliti.
 
Oggi Hamsun rappresenta un esempio straordinario per tutti i popoli gelosi della loro identità, e per quelli europei in modo particolare. La congiura dei dissacratori e dei farisaici materialisti, dal basso di una putrescente “normalità” da insetti, non poteva non giudicare “pazzo” un uomo così diverso da loro, così orgoglioso della sua anima norrena e del suo sangue di contadino europeo.
 
* * *
 
Tratto da Italicum, novembre-dicembre 2014, anno XXIX, pp. 30-32.

vendredi, 10 avril 2015

Jan Stachniuk and the Spirit of the World

Jan Stachniuk and the Spirit of the World

zadr.jpgJan Stachniuk was born in 1905 in Kowel, Wołyń (in what is today Ukraine). In 1927, he began his public activity in Poznań, where he studied economics. There, he became active in the Union of Polish Democratic Youth and published his first books: Kolektywizm a naród (1933) and Heroiczna wspólnota narodu (1935). Beginning in 1937, Stachniuk published the monthly magazine Zadruga, which gave birth to a new idea current of the same name. In 1939, two additional books were published: Państwo a gospodarstwo and Dzieje bez dziejów (“History of unhistory”). During the Second World War, he inspired the ideology of the Faction of the National Rise (Stronnictwo Zrywu Narodowego) and the Cadre of Independent Poland (Kadra Polski Niepodległej). In 1943, Stachniuk published Zagadnienie totalizmu (with the help of the Faction). He fought in the Warsaw Uprising and was wounded. After the war, he failed to resume publishing Zadruga, but before the Stalinists attained power in the country, he managed to publish three more books: Walka o zasady, Człowieczeństwo i kultura, and Wspakultura. In 1949, Stachniuk was arrested and sentenced to death in a political show trial. The sentence was not carried out, and he got out of prison in 1955, but he was no longer able to perform any kind work. He died in 1963 and was buried in the Powązki Cemetery.

Stachniuk is the creator of the philosophical system known as “Culturalism” or “Evolutionary Pantheism,” which in its axiological plane is based on the spirituality of the ancient Slavs. The influence of Frederick Nietzsche, Max Weber, Georges Sorel, and Stanisław Brzozowski are also evident, but nevertheless Culturalism, when compared to other currents of European philosophy and humanities, is one of a kind. If we had to compare it to something, then, in my opinion, the closest analogue would the philosophy of Vedanta.

Cosmology and philosophical anthropology

Man is the vanguard of the creative world evolution, the most perfect expression and tool of the Creative Will, active in the world; he struggles to be something greater than he is. This process of exponentiation of the human power over nature and the elements of his own nature is culture. The cessation of this process, for whatever reason, passively submitting to the laws of bare biology and the charms of pure vegetation—this is the opposition of culture; this is backulture (“wspakultura”).[1]

The world is a will. It strives for more and more complex and higher forms.”[2] “The world is a living organic unity, developing towards perfectness. […] The vanguard of the world-in-creation is man. […] The development ability of man relies on his capability of creatively re-creating the existing natural order into a new form of power, which is the objective world of accomplishments of culture. On a biological level, man is part of the natural world order. We are born; we multiply; we feed like all mammals; but we are distinct from this level by an enigmatic capability of binding nature’s energy into a new form of cultural power.[3]

Every species of animals that exists on this world struggles to survive. In opposition to dead matter, animals try, by different means, to “manage” the environment in which they live—they hunt, defend their turf, create a herd with its own hierarchy, and so on. In a way, animals fill the world with themselves, by managing the environment—they struggle to fulfill their needs; they struggle for an existential optimum (“biovegetation” in Stachniuk’s terminology). This “optimum of biovegetational existence” Stachniuk calls “physiological happiness.” Everything that lives, including humans (as biological entities), struggles for “physiological happiness.” The essence of biovegetation is the “eternal turn”[4]—during millions of years of evolution, the lives of mammals and insects does not change significantly; they all live more or less the same way. They are constantly in the confines of “biovegetation.”

The factor that distinguishes man from other living species is his capability of creation, the enigmatic creative element. Only man is capable of progress, of development, of creating ever more perfect and better forms, to material, social and spiritual life.[5]

As we all know, man is the only specie that managed to lift itself above and beyond pure biology. He created cities, states, law, culture, art, science, technology, civilization. Man forced himself out of the eternal turn of biovegetation. How? According to Stachniuk, man remains an animal and part of the world of biology, “but in his essence there was a breach. This breach is the ability of creation, the creative genius. It is an over-biologic plane. From its nozzles, the humanistic world open up.”[6]

The creative evolution is perpetrated by another bearing, on another level. The cosmic will has forgone its prime intent and instead strives towards recycling the world into a pulsating organism of concentrated cultural power, of which man is the core. […] [E]very one of us is a very tragic being, because we belong simultaneously to two levels of existence: biovegetational and creative-humanist.[7]

The nature of man is then dualist. On the one hand, man is an animal and a part of biovegetation. On the other hand, he is something over-biological, something beyond an animal; he has a spiritual element and the capability to create. He’s the creator of “culture.” Man, as a type of being “flounces” between two levels of existence.

The moment when the emotional element was able to vanquish its internal inertia and induced man do the first cultural action is the birth of the creative will.[8]

According to Stachniuk, the fullness of humanity—panhumanism—is reached when man, with all of himself, submits to the creative will and embraces his mission, i.e., when he creates “culture.” Panhumanism can be defined as man’s will and capability to mold being according to his ever more magnificent visions, as well as the awareness and readiness of man to fulfill his leading role in the creative world evolution. Man has the capability to process the energy of the world into objective works of culture, which, in turn, serve to intensify the process of culture itself. This is his mission—it manifests itself in action and is the process of building the process of culture.

All of this is possible thanks to the “organ of man’s genius.”

It is not a bio-morpholigical organ, but has consisted of our whole physiological apparatus. […] The intangible organ in our bio-physical organism transmutes the normal course of physiological processes into dispositions of creation. This is why we speak of the organ of man’s genius.[9]

The primal biological energy, which in the animal-plant world is directed towards unlimited biological expansion is transmuted, in man, into man’s genius, that is the creative will. It, in turn, leads to an unlimited development of the instrumentarium as a tool of its mission.

The creative will is what enables man to pull himself out of the vicious circle of the “eternal turn,” thereby attaining a higher mode of existence, which enables the fulfillment of man’s mission, by building culture—which manifests itself by creating ever new “culture-creations” or the “instrumentarium of culture.”

The full and proper life of a human depends on overcoming the inertia of the biological level of existence and transforming the elemental life energy of our bodies into the creative will, which, in turn, should most fruitfully manifest itself in the development of an “instrumental will.”[10]

The organ of man’s genius enables him to experience being and life in a specific way, namely in feeling the organic unity of the world, ever evolving into ever higher forms. This way of sensing the world is (evolutionary) pantheism. It is the creative will that is the factor that distinguishes man from the rest of the animals. “Our contingent biological shell is a bearing, by which the creative will flows by divine stream; our psycho-physical personality is a contingent tool; by humbly submitting to this will, we can perform the most profound, the most burdened transmogrifications in the world.”[11]

Humanity, in Stachniuk’s eyes, is a process of creation that consists of three elements: a) human biology, b) creative will and c) instrumental will. These are the three elements of “panhumanist man.”[12] Human biology—that’s our organisms, our physical potential, our muscles, and the work of our hands. Creative will is our “inborn direction of emotion and drives in man”; it’s the subject of the humanist world.[13] The third element is the instrumental will, in other words the ability of binding the energy of the natural world into a form of cultural power.

Man is seen as a being eternally developing himself by his creations, and this work is a process that is constant throughout generations. In the light of the philosophy of Culturalism, man is not an individual, a monad existing in a void or a set of individuals, but a string of generations. Humanity is perceived by Stachniuk as the process of creating and re-creating the world, constantly perfecting it, while dismissing it means—ultimately—the rejection of humanity itself.

The philosophical anthropology of Culturalism is very much interconnected and interwined with its. . .

Theory of Culture as Meta-narration

Stachniuk’s theory of culture makes up the core of his philosophy. It is really the backbone of Culturalism. Every current in Stachniuk’s thought springs from it.

stachniuk3.jpgThe sensation of the creative pressure, the feeling of the cosmic mission of creation, the desire to contribute to the creative world evolution by man is, in the lens of Culturalism, a sign of health and moral youth. According to Stachniuk, this is normal, the way it should be. Human history is the eternal antagonism of two, contradictory, directions—“the first one is the blind pressure of man towards panhumanism, the second is the escape into a solidified system.”[14]

The axis of human history on the globe is not the struggle between Spirit and Matter, egoism and altruism, God and Satan; it’s also not the class struggle or race struggle, but the struggle of culture and backulture [wspakultura] for the power over humanity […] Each of us is a warzone between the culture current and the backulture current. […] The current of culture is the process of becoming of the force and power, the richness and dynamism of life.[15]

What is “culture”? It is the “process of binding the energy of the field of the elements.”[16] For Stachniuk, culture is not something meant to tackle or inhibit nature, it is a process of reforming it. Culture is something that emerges from nature and is its higher level. A human of “panhumanism” acts as a transformer of energy—the energy of the elements—that produces “culture-creations.” What are culture-creations? Examples are law, the state, poetry, technology, music, philosophy, a factory, and the Internet. Humanity is thus (in its ideal state) an interconnected web of energy transformers, constantly updating and perfecting the world and humanity, producing culture-creations that are, in turn, used as fuel for even more powerful culture-creations. Culture—the process of reorganizing the field of the (natural) elements—is the ultimate mission of humanity.

It is, of course, clear as day that we don’t live in a world full of conscious “panhumanists.” Why is that? As I mentioned earlier, the nature of human is dualistic—there is the bio-vegetational level and the creative-humanist level. A human being is a warzone of the battle between culture and backulture. What is backulture? It is the cessation of the process of culture; the passive yielding to the laws of bare biology and appeal of pure vegetation. It's passiveness, inertia, standstill. It is the "cosmic illness.”

The effects of backulture in the world of man can be seen as the “unhistoric” attitude and the desire to free oneself from the requirement of creation. It is the degrading of oneself to the primitive, primordial, animal level by directing oneself towards passive consumption of culture-creations. The defective human, who is under the influence of backulture, sees culture only as something to be consumed. He does not see culture as a fertile field than can be farmed in order to raise crops of culture-creations. Culture is seen purely as a thing for pleasure, for individual gratification, something that helps the individual attain “physiological happiness,” not as a mine of mighty energy capable of recreating the world as we know it.

Prime examples of backulture are, according to Stachniuk, universalist world religions like Islam, Christianity, and Buddhism, which show “contempt for creativeness.” They reduce human life to a place to score points for the “other life” or the “other world.” They show an anti-humanist and anti-creative attitude. This is why the creator of Zadruga dismisses them and looks to Paganism instead.

The wave of total backultures (…) in the last three thousand years has extinguished the dawn of the creative actions of man. The first sparks of the fire have been covered with darkness. The just barely ignited fire of India has been quickly extinguished under the shroud of Brahmanism, and then different types of Buddhism. The procession of the cross extinguished the march of Hellenic culture. In other places, Buddhism and Islam have acted similarly. On the once fertile fields poisonous weeds have spread. We know them: Brahmanism, Jainism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Christianity, Islam, and countless other forms of elements of backulture. They captured enormous pieces of humanity. All bigger human congeries were its victims. India, China, almost all of Asia is to this day paralyzed. After a magnificent blooming of the Greco-Roman culture, lasting only a few centuries, it seemed that it has fallen into the eternal darkness of unhistory [bezdzieje]. They’ve lasted one and a half thousand years. After this period, an unbelievably lively mixture of European peoples freed themselves partially, creating modern culture. It would be disingenuous to think that all of Europe took part in its creation. All the Slavic east and almost all Romantic nations have been deeply paralyzed by Christian backulture. The world in its overwhelming mass is immersed in the darkness of this or another total backulture. Generally speaking, it rules over 90% of humanity.[17]

One may ask, of course: “How can you say that medieval Europe was decadent if it was then united and powerful? How can you call Christianity a destructive force considering the whole of European Christian culture?”

Stachniuk provided an answer for that. In a situation where backulture cannot totally break down the fire of culture, it starts acting like a parasite. It uses the lively energy of the process of culture to preserve itself and not let culture free itself completely. This is what happened in the case of Europe.

Kindly, sweet, and humble Christ, who ordered us not to resist evil, made some exceptions, major ones. Where the matters of faith were involved, he used “vane” and “fading” means and used them with feelings that can’t be described as “love.” When he saw tradesmen trading in the house of prayer, he burst with feelings not at all “sweet.” […] We have here a flash of a principle, which can be described like this: Everything is vanity, everything should be forsaken and disdained, except the situation in which this vanity can be used to strengthen the “truth.” Anger is evil, the sword and the whip are tools of evil, but if through anger, the sword, or the whip we clear the path for the Church, then anger, the sword, and the whip and all that is vane becomes worthy. This is the principle that we call the perverse instrumentalism of backulture[18]

This mechanism is actually the creator of the medieval order of Europe. Rome, undermined and its true essence destroyed by Christianity, was gradually overwhelmed by lively Germanic warrior tribes, ready to fight, conquer, and plunder. Of course, the primitive Germanic tribes were impressed by the refined and sophisticated traditions of Rome. What they didn’t recognize was that this was not the true Rome but a fleeting shadow of what it once was. Nonetheless, the Germanic people were presented with an opportunity: “Do you want to take over the Roman legacy? If you so desire, just let us baptize you.”

That said, not all went as planned. The Germanic people were, in fact, conquerors. Christianity couldn’t just do whatever it wanted with them; it had to make a compromise.

The youthful dynamism of fresh peoples was harnessed to realize the grand project of making all European peoples sick, subjecting them to the domination of the backulture of the cross. All Europe was becoming a field to broaden “the vineyards of the Lord.” The Germanic peoples, adapting to their new role, spread the sickness of the cross on the whole continent. They were appointed to that task because, thanks to their position of conquerors, they didn’t submit to the appeal of Christian mysticism, while simultaneously taking the political goals of Christianity—the creation of a universal empire—as their own. […] This is how the concept of the Holy Roman Empire of the German nation was born.[19]

This is how the “perverse instrumentalism of backulture” works in practice. It harnesses the youthful energy of culture (which could be much more powerful on its own) to further spread its disease. After this single “compromise,” the next one was not necessary. Christian backulture could now, with the might of the German sword, attempt to fully Christianize the Slavs—no punches pulled, no compromises. The cross, along with the German sword, could now completely destroy the original, Pagan, Slavic culture. Slavdom became a Christian colony in the full sense of the word. Everything that was not subject to the believers of the cross was destroyed. The original tradition was severed.

Although Stachniuk was and still is considered very much anti-clerical and anti-Christian, it would be a misinterpretation to reduce him to such. He knew full well that simple “secularization” is not the answer. The reason for this is that backulture does not come only in the form of religion; there is also “secular backulture”—simplistic rationalism, “free-thought,” pacifism, “human rights” ideology, or crude hedonism. Secular backulture (also called “unhistoric rationalism”), just like Christianity, forsakes the building of culture, the great mission of empowering man, and the creative world evolution. It also fails to recognize the difference between Christian spiritualism and the creative world evolution. Anything that goes beyond pacifism, hedonism, and physiological happiness seems suspect and often outright “fascist.” But in reality, it is yet just another form of backulture.

Conclusion

Jan Stachniuk was a man ahead of his time. His concepts were often either harshly criticized or ignored during his life. He was a man that advocated embracing dynamic progress, science, and technology, whereas mainstream “national radicals” were thrilled by Nikolai Berdyaev’s static “New Middle Ages.” You could even say that his combination of embracing advanced technology and simultaneously appealing to the values of the ancient world anticipated Guillaume Faye’s concept of “Archeofuturism.”

The author of “History of unhistory” was also instrumental in reviving the pre-Christian religion of the Slavs in Poland. He is a cult figure among many contemporary Polish Rodnovers. His memory not only lives on, but proves to be an inspiration nowadays for religious organizations, (meta-)political organizations, and music bands alike.

Jan Stachniuk is an ethical maximalist and a firm believer in human potential. It’s worth to note that, unlike Nietzsche, he didn’t advocate attaining power for its own sake. A man of panhumanism should not see other people as tools for his own advancement. His goal should be becoming a hero to his community. Stachniuk’s ideal is not a single Übermensch, but a great and heroic community. His goal was creating a myth; a myth of the “national creative community.”

I am human; therefore I am fulfilling the goal of the world. […] It is through the human, through his cultural work, that the creative world evolution takes place. […] The human is not a boring creature looking for satisfaction, peace, lyrics of digestion, and caramel sensation of the mind on the basis of physiological happiness, like the secular unhistory or “eternal virtues” and communing with the “truth” revealed by various “redeemers.” The human is a boiling cosmic energy, looking for ever greater ways of expression in culture creations charged with tragic creativeness. […] The desire to live a valuable life today means to push forward the birth of the myth of the creative community, to boldly head into the fire of the coming change.[20]


  1. J. Stachniuk, Droga rewolucji kulturowej w Polsce, Toporzeł, Wrocław 2006, 5
  2. J. Stachniuk, Człowieczeństwo i kultura, Toporzeł, Wrocław 1996, 18
  3. J. Stachniuk, Droga, op. cit., 8
  4. This term should not to be confused with Nietzsche’s “eternal recurrence of the same,” which is a different concept altogether.
  5. J. Stachniuk, Człowieczeństwo, op. cit., p. 10
  6. Ibid., p. 21
  7. Ibid., p. 22
  8. Ibid, p. 24
  9. J. Stachniuk, Chrześcijaństwo a ludzkość, Toporzeł, Wrocław 1997, 11
  10. J. Stachniuk, Droga, op. cit., 9
  11. J. Stachniuk, Człowieczeństwo, op. cit., 24
  12. J. Stachniuk, Droga, op. cit., 9
  13. Ibid., 23-24.
  14. J. Stachniuk, Chrześcijaństwo, op. cit., 15
  15. J. Stachniuk, Człowieczeństwo, op. cit., 117
  16. Ibid., 27
  17. Ibid., 119.
  18. J. Stachniuk, Chrześcijaństwo, op. cit., 137.
  19. Ibid., 179.
  20. J. Stachniuk, Człowieczeństwo, op. cit., 254.

 

00:07 Publié dans Philosophie | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) | Tags : jan stachniuk, zadruga, pologne, philosophie, paganisme | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook

jeudi, 05 mars 2015

Island baut erste nordische Kultstätte seit Wikingerzeit

Island baut erste nordische Kultstätte seit Wikingerzeit

Ex: http://www.der-dritte-weg.info

Nachdem die Zahl der Anhänger der nordischen Glaubensrichtung sich auf Island seit dem Jahr 2000 verfünffacht hat, soll in der isländischen Hauptstadt Reykjavík erstmals seit der Wikingerzeit wiedereine heidnische Kultstätte entstehen.Nach der Christianisierung Islands im Jahre 1000 durfte das Heidentum nicht mehr praktiziert werden.

Die Insel-Zeitung "The Independent" berichtet, daß die Glaubensgemeinschaft Ásatrúarfélagið, auf Deutsch „Gemeinschaft der Asen-Gläubigen“, ein Kultgebäude für die Götter mitten in Reykjavík auf einem Hügel, der die Stadt überblickt, errichten will. Die heidnische Kultstätte soll aus einem Gebäude mit einer Kuppel bestehen, so der "Indepent" weiter. In dem neuen Gebäude werde man heiraten können, Begräbnisse begehen, Lebensleiten feiern sowie das traditionelle Blót-Fest feiern können, bei dem mit Horn-Bechern auf die Götter angestoßen und zusammen gespeist wird.

Auch in Deutschland finden sich Ableger des Asen-Glaubens. Die Artgemeinschaft – Germanische Glaubens-Gemeinschaft wesensgemäßer Lebensgestaltung wurde 1951 gegründet. Die Artgemeinschaft versteht sich als Glaubensgemeinschaft von Menschen, die von nordisch-germanischer Art sind. Sie orientiert sich nicht am germanischen Polytheismus, sondern pflegt wie andere Deutschgläubige eher einen arteigenen Monotheismus und bezeichnet ihr „nordisch-germanisches Heidentum“ als Artbekenntnis und beruft sich auf die germanischen Sittengesetze.

dimanche, 15 février 2015

David Herbert Lawrence: vers un paganisme solaire

d-h-lawrence1.jpg

David Herbert Lawrence: vers un paganisme solaire

Un auteur maudit?

par Jean-Christophe Mathelin

Ex: http://www.archiveseroe.eu

L’écrivain — et peintre — britannique David Herbert Lawrence (1885-1930), que l’on ne confondra pas avec son compatriote et contemporain T.E. Lawrence, alias Lawrence d’Arabie, est essentiellement connu des lecteurs de langue française pour deux romans : L’Amant de Lady Chatterley et Le Serpent à plumes. Le premier participa aux émois de quelques générations d’adolescents (j’en suis !) qui l’empruntaient clandestinement dans la bibliothèque de leurs parents. Ajoutons que le film de J. Jaeckin (1981) avec Sylvia Christel (Emmanuelle) dans le rôle de lady Chatterley renforçait l’impression du grand public selon laquelle D.H. Lawrence n’était qu’un auteur érotique (1). Pourtant le public cultivé savait que cet écrivain “osé”, dont certaines œuvres furent interdites dans son pays, avait aussi écrit Le Serpent à plumes, du nom de la divinité aztèque Quetzalcoatl. Ce roman d’aventures mexicaines connut un grand succès de librairie dans les années 50, et passa même en épisodes quotidiens radiodiffusés sur France Culture, à l’occasion du cinquantenaire de sa publication, en 1976. D.H. Lawrence a écrit, outre une douzaine de romans, à peu près autant d’essais, 70 nouvelles, quatre pièces de théâtre et quatre recueils de poèmes.

Compte tenu de sa mort relativement précoce — il avait 45 ans —, l’œuvre est donc considérable. Lorsque l’on s’y plonge, on découvre que l’aspect sensuel de Lawrence n’est qu’une des composantes de sa conception philosophico-religieuse, beaucoup plus vaste, “païenne”, c’est-à-dire traditionnelle et cosmique.

En effet, Lawrence ne renoue-t-il pas avec l’idéal grec antique lorsqu’il affirme : « la vie n’est supportable que quand le corps et l’esprit sont en harmonie, qu’un équilibre naturel s’établit entre eux et que chacun des deux a pour l’autre un respect naturel ». Selon lui, « l’amour physique (…) permet de renouer avec les forces instinctives et naturelles de l’existence », forces éteintes dans l’homme occidental par le mode de vie moderne. De même, il reproche au Christianisme (dans lequel il a été élevé) d’être dépourvu du sens vital, d’être, comme l’avait vu Nietzsche, une religion du ressentiment collectif. À l’inverse, la sacralisation de la sexualité par le Paganisme permettait, en reconnaissant à l’homme et à la femme leur complémentarité, par-delà leurs différences, de participer à l’Ordre du Monde (2). Lawrence, pour qui la sexualité n’est pas synonyme d’orgies, écrit : « La communion des deux fleuves de sang de l’homme et de la femme, dans le sacrement du mariage, parachève la création : elle complète le rayonnement du Soleil et le rutilement des étoiles ».

Dans le présent article, nous nous intéresserons particulièrement à l’aspect païen et surtout solaire de l’écrivain car dans la conception cosmique flamboyante de Lawrence, le Soleil occupe une place centrale, comme nous le verrons à travers quelques-uns de ses ouvrages.

Un roman païen : “Le Serpent à plumes”

dhl2268068633.jpgCette fresque mystico-politique a été écrite dans un village du Nouveau-Mexique en 1925. L’action se passe au Mexique, riche de son passé, mais usé, décadent, vidé de sa substance par les trois grands maux apportés par l’homme blanc, qui sont (selon Lawrence) le Christianisme, l’américanisme, le socialisme. Un homme est particulièrement conscient de cette déchéance, c’est l’archéologue-historien Don Ramon. Cet aristocrate de l’esprit sait pourtant qu’une chose pourra sauver son pays : le retour, aux anciennes valeurs, incarnées par le Dieu Quetzalcoatl, fils du Soleil, Seigneur de la Sagesse et de l’étoile du matin. Don Ramon ne se dissimule pas les difficultés de l’entreprise : pour amener le Mexique à renouer avec ses traditions glorieuses, il lui faudra combattre à la fois l’amour universel de la religion trompeuse, le culte du dollar et la classe politique corrompue. Tâche immense dans laquelle il sera aidé par Don Cipriano, un général auquel ses hommes ont voué leur vie pour rétablir le culte de Huitzilopochtli, Dieu du Soleil et de la guerre. Unis par un idéal commun et une amitié sans faille, « l’homme de Quetzalcoatl » (Ramon l’Européen) et « l’homme de Huirzilopochtli » (Cipriano l’indien) mènent une sorte de croisade païenne, qui connaît un succès croissant auprès du peuple. Celui-ci est en effet sensible aux beaux hymnes de Ramon, qui annoncent que Jésus ayant fait son temps, les anciens Dieux vont renaître. Une Irlandaise, Kate, se joint à eux. Fascinée par ce retour d’un pays à sa culture ancestrale, déçue par la société moderne, elle ira jusqu’à épouser Cipriano (bien qu’il lui reste toujours étranger) et devenir ainsi Malitzi, la Déesse de la végétation. Mais le jour où la religion de Quetzalcoatl sera déclarée religion officielle du Mexique, Kate repartira vers l’Europe. Don Ramon la charge d’une mission : « Dites aux gens de votre Irlande de faire comme nous ici ». C’est là que le livre de Lawrence prend tour son sens. À travers Ramon, c’est aux Européens que Lawrence s’adresse, car, malgré ses errances aux quatre bouts du monde (motivées par les persécutions subies en Angleterre), il n’a jamais cessé de penser au salut de l’Europe. Ramon, bâtisseur d’une nouvelle histoire, jette un pont entre le plus lointain passé et le plus lointain futur, là où l’homme atteindra à la plus grande vie. À l’opposé du cosmopolitisme uniformisant, il souhaite que chaque peuple retrouve ses racines spirituelles, chacun invoquant son Hermès, son Wotan ou son Mithra.

La solarité au féminin : “L’Amazone fugitive”

Deux ans après Le Serpent à plumes, paraissait ce recueil de nouvelles, du titre de la plus longue et de la plus connue d’entre les nouvelles. L’Amazone fugitive est inspirée, elle aussi, du séjour de Lawrence au Nouveau-Mexique, et de son admiration pour ces Indiens Pueblos, adeptes du culte solaire (3). Lawrence met à nouveau en scène une femme blanche au Mexique. Comme Kate, elle est désillusionnée par une vie terne. Elle décide un jour d’abandonner le ranch de son mari et ses enfants pour rejoindre une mystérieuse tribu indienne, censée avoir conservé l’antique religion aztèque. Au terme de son périple, l’amazone fugitive rencontre trois Indiens qui la conduisent enfin dans la fameuse tribu.

« Il dit : Pourquoi a-t-elle quitté sa maison et les hommes blancs ? Veut-elle apporter le Dieu de l’homme blanc aux Chilchuis ? Non, répliqua-t-elle avec témérité. J’ai quitté moi-même le Dieu de l’homme blanc. Je suis venue chercher le Dieu des Chilchuis. (…) Il demande si vous avez apporté votre cœur aux Dieux des Chilchuis, traduisit le Jeune Indien. Dites-lui que oui, répondit-elle automatiquement. »

Traitée avec égard par ses hôtes, dont elle est néanmoins prisonnière, elle découvre peu à peu l’importance fondamentale du culte solaire pour ces Indiens. Elle réalise ainsi le sens inconscient de sa fuite : venir s’offrir en sacrifice au Dieu-Soleil. Même si cette idée lui fait parfois horreur, elle comprend qu’elle doit aller jusqu’au bout de sa quête, sans regrets :

«  Faut-il que je meure et que je sois livrée au Soleil ? demanda-t-elle.

- Un jour, dit-il avec un sourire évasif. Un jour ou l’autre nous mourrons tous. »

Nous trouvons ici un autre thème lawrencien : plutôt une mort glorieuse et volontairement choisie (on pense ici aux kamikaze) que de vivre en mort-vivant , comme la société moderne nous l’impose. Pendant les mois précédant le solstice d’hiver, où elle sera sacrifiée, elle sentira se développer en elle les mille liens la reliant à l’Univers. Lawrence est un animiste et un panthéiste convaincu ; il décrit admirablement « ce sentiment exquis (…) de se fondre dans la beauté et l’harmonie des choses » : 

« Alors elle entendit les grandes étoiles, qu’elle voyait au ciel dans l’encadrement de sa porte ouverte, parler par leur mouvement et leur éclat, faire des confidences au Cosmos tandis qu’elles dansaient en formant de parfaites figures pareilles à des clochettes au firmament et se croisaient et se groupaient dans la danse éternelle, séparées par des espaces sombres. Et, les jours froids et nuageux, elle entendait les flocons de neige qui gazouillaient et sifflaient timidement dans le ciel comme des oiseaux qui s’assemblent et s’envolent en automne, puis brusquement poussaient un cri d’adieu vers la lune invisible et s’esquivaient des plaines de l’air en dégageant une douce chaleur. Elle-même criait à la Lune invisible de ne plus être en colère, de refaire la paix avec le Soleil invisible comme une femme qui cesse d’être irritée dans sa maison. Et elle sentait que la Lune se radoucissait pour le Soleil dans le ciel hivernal quand la neige tombait avec un abandon languissant et glacé, tandis que la paix du Soleil se mêlait dans une sorte d’unisson à la paix de la Lune ».

dhl214.jpgEt le jour venu, c’est sans état d’âme qu’elle accomplira son destin. Une autre nouvelle du même recueil, intitulée Soleil, reprend encore ce thème de la femme mûre insatisfaite de son existence, mais il est traité de manière beaucoup plus pacifique, comme un conte naturiste. Juliette quitte les États-Unis, où elle dépérit, pour le Soleil de la Méditerranée. Là commencera pour elle une nouvelle existence à travers un face à face quotidien avec l’Astre divin (évoquant l’expérience d’Anna de Noailles [4]). Elle s’épanouira enfin sous ses rayons qui harmonisent à la fois le corps et l’âme :

« À sa connaissance du Soleil, à la certitude que le Soleil la connaissait dans le sens cosmique et charnel du mot, s’ajoutait une impression de détachement et un certain mépris pour tous les êtres humains. Ils étaient si loin des éléments primordiaux, si privés de Soleil. Ils étaient pareils aux vers des cimetières. »

Le jugement très dur de Lawrence sur ses contemporains résulte de sa conception selon laquelle « la seule raison de vivre est d’être pleinement vivant ». Or Lawrence reproche à la civilisation moderne de tuer l’étincelle divine dans l’individu, qui apparaît, dès lors, comme incomplet, endormi. Seul l’homme “primitif”, qu’il a rencontré notamment chez les Indiens, est pleinement humain car il se fie à son instinct. Cet homme a de plus à ses yeux l’immense avantage « d’avoir conservé avec l’Univers des liens mystérieux ».

Le nouveau Discours sur Hélios-Roi : “Apocalypse”

dhl19613.jpgCette pensée, que Lawrence exprime de manière allégorique dans ses romans et nouvelles, sera explicite dans son dernier ouvrage, paru un an après sa mort, et qui représente son testament spirituel. Apocalypse est l’étude fouillée du texte de Jean de Patmos, qui clôt le Nouveau Testament. Si la notion même d’apocalypse lui répugne, à cause de cet « ignoble désir de fin du monde », Lawrence s’intéresse à cet écrit car il y découvre deux influences opposées. Tout d’abord, le message de ceux qui « ne peuvent même pas supporter l’existence de la Lune et du Soleil », mais par-delà la strate judéo-chrétienne, il y trouve une strate païenne. Car pour faire passer de manière frappante cette vision apocalyptique, le ou les auteurs ont eu recours à un langage, à une symbolique cosmiques, donc païens (5). L’étude de l’Apocalypse est ainsi pour Lawrence prétexte à comparer entre elles ces deux conceptions du monde antagonistes :

« Ne nous figurons pas que nous voyons le Soleil comme le voyaient les civilisations anciennes. Nous ne voyons qu’un petit luminaire scientifique, réduit à un ballon de gaz enflammé. Dans les siècles précédant Ézéchiel et Jean, le Soleil était encore une réalité magnifique. Les hommes en tiraient force et splendeur, et lui rendaient hommage, lustre et remerciements. À l’époque de Jésus, les hommes ont fait du ciel une machine de destin et de fatalité, une prison. Les chrétiens s’évadaient de cette prison en reniant radicalement le corps. Mais hélas, quelles petites évasions, ces évasions par reniement ! — ce sont les plus fatales des évasions. La chrétienté et notre civilisation idéaliste n’ont été qu’une longue évasion, cause de stagnation infinie et de misère — la misère que les gens connaissent aujourd’hui, qui ne vient pas d’un manque physique, mais d’une façon plus mortifère, d’un manque de désir vital. Mieux vaut manquer de pain que manquer de vie — grande évasion dont le seul fruit est la machine ! »

Lawrence développe sa vision d’un Paganisme solaire, qui rejoint l’expérience des grands mystiques et anticipe l’inconscient jungien :

« Et certaines des grandes images de l’Apocalypse remuent en nous d’étranges profondeurs, nous procurent une étrange et sauvage vibration pour la liberté, la vraie liberté : fuite vers quelque chose et non fuite vers nulle part. Fuir la petite cage exiguë de notre univers, exiguë car elle n’est qu’une extension à sens unique, une suite morne sans aucune signification ; la fuite vers le Cosmos vital, vers un Soleil à la vie grande et sauvage, qui abaisse ses regards pour nous raffermir, ou bien, foudroyant, merveilleux, passe son chemin. Qui dit que le Soleil ne peut pas me parler ! Le Soleil a une vaste conscience flamboyante, moi j’en ai une petite. Quand j’arrive à me débarrasser de mon fatras d’idées et de sentiments personnels, et à descendre jusqu’à mon être solaire dépouillé (6), alors le Soleil et moi pouvons nous entretenir sur l’heure, échange flamboyant, il me donne vie, Soleil de vie, et je lui envoie un peu d’une vivacité nouvelle venue d’un monde au sang vif — le grand Soleil (…) aime le sang rouge et vif de la vie, et peut l’enrichir à l’infini si nous savons comment le recevoir.  »

Ce Paganisme solaire est naturellement complémentaire d’un Paganisme lunaire :

« Et nous avons perdu la Lune, la Lune fraîche, brillante et changeante. C’est elle qui peut toucher nos nerfs, les polir de son rayonnement soyeux et les policer par sa fraîche présence. Car la Lune est la maîtresse et la mère de nos corps aquatiques, le corps pâle de notre conscience nerveuse et de notre chair moite. La Lune pourrait nous apaiser et nous guérir entre ses bras comme une grande et fraîche Artémis. Mais nous l’avons perdue, nous l’ignorons dans notre stupidité, et rageuse, elle nous fixe et nous cingle de coups de fouet nerveux. Oh ! prenons garde à la coléreuse Artémis des cieux nocturnes, prenons garde à la rancune et au croissant d’Astarté.  »

Mais attention, prévient Lawrence, le culte solaire n’a rien à voir avec la moderne “bronzette” :

«  Nous ne pouvons nous assimiler le Soleil en nous couchant tout nus comme des cochons sur une plage. Le Soleil lui-même qui nous bronze nous désagrège du dedans (…) il ne peur que fondre sur nous et nous détruire (…) dragon de destruction et non plus faiseur de vie. (…) Nous ne pouvons nous assimiler le Soleil que par une sorte de culte, de même avec la Lune — en décrétant un culte au Soleil ».

Il s’agit d’un état de conscience et d’un vitalisme (7) :

« Il y a une éternelle correspondance vitale entre notre sang et le Soleil : il y a éternelle correspondance vitale entre nos nerfs et la Lune. Si nous perdons le contact et l’harmonie avec la Lune et le Soleil, tous deux se retournent contre nous comme deux grands dragons de destruction. Le Soleil est une source de vitalité sanguine, il rayonne de force à notre égard. Mais si une fois nous lui résistons en disant : ce n’est qu’un ballon de gaz ! — alors la vraie vitalité rayonnante de sa lumière se change en subtile force désagrégeante et nous défait. Même chose pour la Lune, les planètes, les grandes étoiles. Ce sont nos producteurs ou nos destructeurs, il n’y a pas d’échappatoire. »

Ce Paganisme est aussi un panthéisme (8) :

« Le Cosmos et nous-mêmes ne faisons qu’un. Le Cosmos est un grand organisme vivant dont nous faisons toujours partie. Le Soleil est un grand cœur dont les pulsations parcourent jusqu’à nos veines les plus fines. La Lune est un grand centre nerveux étincelant d’où nous vibrons sans cesse. Qui peut dire le pouvoir que Saturne a sur nous, ou Vénus ? C’est un pouvoir vital, ondoiement extrême qui nous traverse sans interruption. Et si nous renions Aldébaran, Aldébaran nous transperce d’infinis coups de poignards. Celui qui n’est pas avec nous est contre moi ! — c’est la loi cosmique. Et tout ceci est vrai à la lettre, comme le savaient les hommes du temps passé, et comme ils le sauront à nouveau ».

Malheureusement, le lien cosmique s’est dégradé depuis l’Antiquité jusqu’à nos jours :

« Or la connexion en nous est rompue, les centres sont morts. Notre Soleil, tellement plus banal, est tout autre chose que le Soleil cosmique des Anciens. Nous pouvons voir ce que nous appelons Soleil, mais nous avons perdu Hélios pour toujours, et plus encore le grand globe des Chaldéens. Nous avons perdu le Cosmos, nous en avons déconnecté notre sensibilité, c’est notre principale tragédie. Qu’est-ce que notre minable petit amour de la nature — la Nature — comparé à une ancienne et magnifique vie commune avec le Cosmos, honorée du Cosmos ! (…) Le Soleil ne nous nourrit plus, ni la Lune. En langage mystique, la Lune s’est obscurcie et le Soleil est devenu noir. Quand j’entends des gens modernes se plaindre d’être seuls, je sais ce qui est arrivé. Ils ont perdu le Cosmos ».

Il nous faut donc retrouver une sensibilité, une conscience cosmiques :

«  Nous ne manquons ni d’humanité ni de subjectivité ; ce dont nous manquons, c’est de vie cosmique, du Soleil en nous et de la Lune en nous. (…) Maintenant, il nous faut retrouver le Cosmos, et ça ne s’obtient pas par un tour de passe-passe mental. Il nous faut revivre tous les réflexes de réponse qui sont morts en nous. Les tuer nous a pris deux mille ans. Qui sait combien de temps il faudra pour les ranimer ?  »

Nous avons ici l’ouvrage capital de la pensée lawrentienne, qui expose dans un style éblouissant son Paganisme panthéiste et solaire. Un des plus beaux discours sur Hélios-Roi depuis celui de l’Empereur Julien ! On peut considérer cet écrit inclassable (9), mais sublime, comme le successeur du Zarathoustra de Nietzsche, auquel il s’apparente par le style et la recherche de valeurs supérieures (10).

Les poèmes solaires de Pensées

Parues également à titre posthume, quelques années après Apocalypse, on retrouve dans ce recueil les différentes facettes de l’auteur. Le Soleil y est omniprésent, comme dans le charmant poème « Femmes solaires  », qui rejoint totalement le personnage de Juliette :

« Comme ce serait étrange si des femmes s’avançaient et disaient :

Nous sommes les femmes solaires !
Nous n’appartenons ni aux hommes ni à nos enfants ni à nous-mêmes
Mais au Soleil.
Ah ! quel délice de sentir le Soleil sur moi !
Quel délice de s’ouvrir comme une fleur
Lorsqu’un homme vient et vous regarde
Le visage plein de lumière, de sorte qu’une femme
Ne peut que s’ouvrir comme une fleur
Percée par les rayons étincelants ».

Les préoccupations sociales de Lawrence apparaissent dans le poème « Les classes moyennes », où il proclame son mépris pour la bourgeoisie :

« Les classes moyennes
Sont sans Soleil.
Elles n’ont que deux étalons,
L’homme et l’argent,
Elles n’ont absolument aucune parenté avec le Soleil. »

DH-Lawrence-L.jpg

En politique, sa conception aristocratique l’amène à se situer en dehors des partis classiques. Il s’en exprime dans « Démocratie » :

« Je suis démocrate dans la mesure où j’aime dans l’homme sa liberté solaire.
Je suis aristocrate dans la mesure où je hais l’étroit esprit de possession.
J’adore le Soleil en tous les hommes
Lorsque je vois briller sur un front
Clair et sans peur, si petit soit-il.
Mais lorsque je vois ces ternes hommes qui arrivent à la puissance
Si laids, pareils à des cadavres, absolument privés de Soleil
Et qui se dandinent machinalement
Comme de gros esclaves victorieux,
Alors je suis plus que radical,
J’ai envie d’amener la guillotine.
Et lorsque je vois des travailleurs
Pâles, vils, semblables à des insectes
Machinalement affairés
Qui vivent comme des poux sur une maigre pitance
Et ne regardent jamais plus haut,
Alors je voudrais, comme Tibère, que la foule n’eût qu’une tête
Pour que je pusse la trancher.
Lorsque les êtres sont totalement dépourvus de Soleil
Ils ne devraient pas exister »

Dans « l’Espace » reparaissent les conceptions panthéistes d’Apocalypse :

« L’espace, bien sûr, est vivant,
C’est pourquoi il bouge ;
Et c’est ce qui le rend éternellement spacieux et aéré.
Quelque part en lui est un cœur sauvage
Dont les battements me transpercent
Et je l’appelle le Soleil ;
Et je me sens aristocrate, plein de noblesse,
Lorsqu’un battement me traverse
Venant du cœur sauvage de l’espace, que je nomme Soleil suprême. »

Pour Lawrence comme pour Nietzsche, la morale chrétienne n’est qu’une morale d’esclaves, avec sa comptabilité anxieuse du péché. La vraie immoralité est pour lui très différente, ainsi qu’il l’a exprimée dans le poème du même nom :

« Il est immoral
D’être mort-vivant,
Éteindre en soi le Soleil
Et l’éteindre dans les autres »

Lawrence, héraut du Soleil

Initié, visionnaire, Lawrence l’a certes été. Comme tous les prophètes, il fut d’abord incompris, à commencer dans son propre pays. Précurseur de la révolution sexuelle, il avait aussi dénoncé les dangereux mirages de la société industrielle. En cette fin de millénaire, où l’homme occidental met toute la planète en danger, où nos systèmes sans âme génèrent toutes sortes de pathologies abjectes, combien les faits ont abondé dans son sens ! Sa vie illustre parfaitement les mots de Teilhard de Chardin : « Ceux qui ont raison trop tôt s’exposent à finir en hérétiques ». Lawrence avait aussi prévu la renaissance du Paganisme, ce qui lui fut reproché. Cette renaissance païenne, aujourd’hui évidente, est pour nous indissociable d’un réveil de la solarité, auquel nous travaillons. Lawrence, chantre du Soleil, nous montre la voie : par la hauteur de ses visions, par la force de son art, il doit être considéré comme l’un des grands représentants de la solarité du XXe siècle.

► Jean-Christophe Mathelin, Antaios n°14, 1999.

Docteur en géologie, JC Mathelin est professeur. Depuis 1992, il anime la revue Solaria et le Cercle de Recherches sur les Cultes Solaires. Il prépare une anthologie des hymnes et prières au Soleil.

Notes :

  • (1) Le génie littéraire de D.H. Lawrence est aujourd’hui largement reconnu et ses audaces érotiques ont été dépassées depuis, par des auteurs qui n’ont pas son talent.
  • (2) A. Maupertuis, Le sexe et le plaisir avant le christianisme : L’érotisme sacré, Retz, Paris 1977.
  • 3) Voir à ce sujet C.G. Jung, Ma vie, Gallimard, 1962.
  • 4) Notamment les poèmes « La Prière au Soleil » et « L’Accueil au Soleil » : cf. Solaria n°7.
  • 5) Le succès historique de la Bible auprès des populations européennes, a priori peu réceptives aux religions du désert, pourrait entre autres s’expliquer par le fait qu’elles y auraient reconnu des éléments indo-européens : un message apollinien dans l’Évangile de Jean (le Prologue par ex.), une eschatologie iranienne dans l’Apocalypse, etc.
  • 6) Pour Jung, lorsque le mystique descend au fond de son âme, il y trouve le « Soleil de l’au-delà ». Voir C.G. Jung, Métamorphoses de l’âme et ses symboles, Librairie de l’Université - Georg et Cie, Genève, 1983.
  • 7) La théorie du vitalisme solaire fut soutenue notamment par le stoïcien Posidonius. Voir F. Cumont, La Théologie solaire du paganisme romain, Mémoires présentés à l’Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres de l’Institut de France, II, 2, Paris, 1913.
  • 8) Vieille théorie stoïcienne. Voir l’article « Panthéisme » dans l’Encyclopaedia Universalis.
  • 9) Osons une comparaison avec Citadelle de Saint-Exupéry, livre posthume et philosophique, un peu décousu, mais profond et poétique.
  • (10) Notamment le très solaire Prologue.


A lire :

  • Le Serpent à plumes, Stock, 1957, (Londres, 1926).
  • L’Amazone fugitive, Stock, 1976, (Londres 1928).
  • Apocalypse, Balland, 1978, (Londres 1931).
  • Matinées mexicaines - Pensées, Stock, 1986 (Londres 1935).

mercredi, 28 janvier 2015

To celebrate Imbolc

Song: Imbolc (Candlemas)
Artist: Lisa Thiel
Album: Circle Of The Seasons
# song: 03

Lyrics

Blessed Bridget comest thou in
Bless this house and all of our kin
Bless this house, and all of our kin
Protect this house and all within

Blessed Bridget come into thy bed
With a gem at thy heart and a crown on thy head
Awaken the fire within our souls
Awaken the fire that makes us whole

Blessed Bridget, queen of the fire
Help us to manifest our desire
May we bring forth all thats good and fine
May we give birth to our dreams in time

Blessed Bridget comest thou in
Bless this house and all of our kin
From the source of Infinite Light
Kindle the flame of our spirits tonight

Blessed Bridget come into thy bed
With a gem at thy heart and a crown on thy head
Awaken the fire within our souls
Awaken the fire that makes us whole

Blessed Bridget, queen of the fire
Help us to manifest our desire
May we bring forth all thats good and fine
May we give birth to our dreams in time

Blessed Bridget comest thou in
Bless this house and all of our kin
From the source of Infinite Light
Kindle the flame of our spirits tonight

Lisa Thiel - Imbolc (Candlemas)

 

Reclaiming - Welcome Brigid - sung by Beverly Frederick

 

 

mercredi, 14 janvier 2015

Odin, Buddha, Pan & Darwin

Peter Bickenbach: Odin, Buddha, Pan & Darwin – eine Rezension

Ellen Kositza

Ex: http://www.sezession.de

(Rezension aus Sezession 63 / Dezember 2014)

peter-bickenbach_odin-buddha-pan-darwin_720x600.jpgPeter Bickenbach setzt sich aus christlicher Perspektive mit dem sogenannten Neuheidentum auseinander. Per aspera ad astra: Darum das Bedauerliche an diesem Buch zuerst. Aus christlicher Sicht ist der Neo-Paganismus (der in seinen modischsten Erscheinungsformen sich gern schwarzgewandet präsentiert) ein Obskurantentum, eine düster-magische Geschichte, auch wenn »Lichtgottheiten« dort als Rollenträger (unter anderen) fungieren. Nun kommt das Buch selbst reichlich verschleiert daher:

Der verrätselte Titel an sich (in Lila) verrät wenig, er verschwindet auch optisch im Braun des Untergrunds. Wir finden auch keinen Hinweis zum Autoren – ist er Sozialwissenschaftler, Theologe oder »interessierter Zeitgenosse«? Wir erfahren es nicht; und wenn eine Fußnote besonders interessant erscheint, finden wir über Strecken »Ebenda« und müssen blättern. Da ein Literaturverzeichnis fehlt, bleibt uns, gewissermaßen abgedunkelt zu lesen. Das macht dann nicht viel, wenn man erkennt: Es ist keine Publikation für eine breite Leserschaft, sondern für eine enger gefaßte »Szene«. Wir dürfen diese als jungkonservatives Milieu begreifen. In diesem Rahmen hat Bickenbachs Buch seine Meriten.

Bickenbach wendet sich implizit an ein »anti-modernes« Publikum, an Leser, die mit dem Fortschrittsglauben hadern, die sich auf einem Weg jenseits materialistischer Vorstellungen sehen, die ein Heil jenseits der sichtbaren Welt erahnen. »Anlaß dieses Buches waren Begegnungen und Gespräche mit Menschen, die kein lebendiges Christentum erfuhren und die Kirchengeschichte nur aus zeitgenössischen Darstellungen kennen«, schreibt Bickenbach. Nach seiner Einschätzung orientierten sich »auf der politisch rechten Seite« die meisten Anhänger an einem »Germanentum«, wobei sich esoterische und radikal-biologische Standpunkte unterscheiden ließen. In drei untergliederten Großkapiteln (»Geschichte und Selbstverständnis der Neuheiden«, »Die Deutung von Brauchtum und Überlieferung« und »Postmoderne Religiosität«) sortiert der Autor sein Arsenal gegen jene, die gegen die »orientalische Wüstenreligion«, die »seelische Verknechtung« und den »Identitätsraub« und den vorgeblichen »Völkermord« durch das Christentum polemisieren.

Erst die zeitgenössische verunklarende Verkündigungspraxis, die statt der eigentlichen Offenbarung die angeblichen Ansprüche »moderner Scheinwerte« in den Vordergrund gestellt habe, »konnte die Vorstellung nähren, das Christentum sei eine Religion der Schwachen, Zukurzgekommenen und Lebensuntüchtigen.« Bickenbach entlarvt – und er tut dies auch mit Hilfe »neo-paganer« Nenngrößen wie Julius Evola – das »lyrisch-subjektive Pathos«, das von Naturerscheinungen hervorgerufen werden kann; er hat auch seinen Nietzsche gründlich gelesen, wie er überhaupt neben gebotener Polarisierung eine Synthese anstrebt.

Das Christentum, das er meint, ist streitbar, tüchtig, kulturstiftend und heroisch. Nach Bickenbach verdankt die neuheidnische Kritik am Christentum dem liberalen Protestantismus ihre Beweggründe. Sie argumentiert selbst auf dem Boden einer relativistischen, individualistischen und eigentlich antitraditionellen Religionserfindung – es gibt keine »heidnische Überlieferung«. Der Autor zitiert aus umgedichtetem Liedgut: »O du fröhliche, o du ahnende / lichtverkündende Wintersonnwendzeit«, er verweist auf Parallelen linker und rechter Religionskritik. Die Neuheiden bekämpfen zugleich einen Pappkameraden, nämlich ein von langer Hand umgewertetes, verbogenes, »geupdatetes« Christentum.

Bickenbach begleitet beispielhaft den Glaubensweg des irrlichternden Gorch Fock, der als Sohn frommer Eltern erst Gott gegen Nietzsche verteidigte, dann zum »Germanengläubigen« wurde (»Mein Zion ist Walhall!«) und im Verlauf des Jahres 1915 bei seinen Einsätzen in Rußland, Serbien und Verdun Monate vor seinem Tod ringend zum Glauben seiner Väter zurückfand: »Den größten Segen des Krieges haben die erfahren, die sich von ihm zu Gott führen ließen.«

Peter Bickenbach: Odin, Buddha, Pan & Darwin, Neustadt a.d. Orla: Arnshaugk 2013. 274 S., 18 € – hier bestellen

mercredi, 07 janvier 2015

Les courants de la Tradition païenne romaine en Italie

Renato del Ponte:

Ex : http://www.archiveseroe.eu/romanitas-a114141076

 

mercredi, 24 décembre 2014

From Pagan Spirituality to Christian Consumerism

yule9.gif

Winter Solstice

From Pagan Spirituality to Christian Consumerism

by RUEL F. PEPA
Ex: http://www.counterpunch.org

Solstice: the sun stands still. In temperate countries of the northern and southern hemispheres, every year there are two: summer and winter. The northern hemisphere’s summer solstice, which occurs on a day in the middle of the year (June 20 to 22, depending on the year), is the southern hemisphere’s winter solstice. Conversely, the southern hemisphere’s summer solstice, which occurs on a day in the third week of December (December 20 to 23, depending on the year), just prior to the New Year, is the northern hemisphere’s winter solstice. In the tropics, these astronomical events are not physically felt, except for the holiday celebration called Christmas that is associated with the northern’s hemisphere winter solstice and was brought by European Christian religions to countries like the Philippines, where I was born.

Dies natalis Solis invicti: Birthday of the unconquered Sun

Though we are more familiar now with the so-called Christmas season, connected with the winter solstice, there has always been something religious or spiritual about this time of year that antedates the Christian era. The traditions of caroling and midnight service, and common symbols in the celebration of Christmas, like mistletoes, decorated trees, candles and lights, wreaths and hollies, among others, were present in European paganism long before the advent of Christianity. Christmas is therefore the “Christianization” of the winter solstice celebration, whose institutionalization over time has led to the theft of most, if not all, of the major highlights from the pagan world.

yulee096f.jpgIn the Hebrew scriptures of the Jewish religion, known as the Old Testament in the Christian Bible, there occurs a single instance of the word “solstice” that is not in any way associated with the annual summer and winter astronomical events. In the book of Joshua, chapter 10 and verses 12 to 14, it is reported that the tribal deity of ancient Israel, called YHWH, caused the sun to stand still in Gibeon to give the Israelites, known to be the people of the said tribal deity, the best opportunity to slaughter and annihilate, in broad daylight, an enemy tribe called the Amorites.

“Then Joshua spoke to the Lord in the day when the Lord delivered up the Amorites before the sons of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel, ‘O sun, stand still at Gibeon, And O moon in the valley of Aijalon.’ So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, Until the nation avenged themselves of their enemies. Is it not written in the book of Jashar? And the sun stopped in the middle of the sky and did not hasten to go down for about a whole day. There was no day like that before it or after it, when the Lord listened to the voice of a man; for the Lord fought for Israel.…”

This Lord, the sadistic tribal deity of ancient Israel, is a far cry from the god of love whose son, Jesus, is mythically believed by Christians to have been born sometime during the winter solstice and in whose honor Christians celebrate Christmas. By contrast to the murderous solstice of the Jewish story, the pagan winter solstice has always symbolized renewed hope, faith in the restorative cosmic forces and most of all, a love of life.

“In the depths of winter I finally learned there was in me an invincible summer.” – Albert Camus

The pagan winter solstice is an exaltation of the human spirit’s rebirth and revitalization, from “the dark nights of the soul” (“la noche oscura del alma”, with apologies to St. John of the Cross) into the energizing warmth of a radiant morning. It is the grandeur of this splendid background that the Christian religion stole for its prevailing celebration called Christmas, to the point of claiming: “It is not the birth of the Sun but rather that of the Son.”

Christianity, whose key figure, Jesus Christ, is a paragon of humility, should be humble enough not to monopolize the significance of the annual December 25 celebration. Deities from other religions whose births, in different periods, have been celebrated on the same date include: Attis and Dionysus, both of Greece; Mithra of Persia; Salivahana of Bermuda; Odin of Scandinavia; Crite of Chaldez; Thammuz of Syria; Addad of Assyria, and Beddru of Japan.

The winter solstice has influenced the lives of many generations of humanity, through the passing of different civilizations. Therefore the universalizing slogan “Jesus is the reason for the season,” is inaccurate. A more logically acceptable statement for Christians is: “Jesus is our reason for the season.” An all-encompassing claim that articulates ownership of the winter solstice celebration, by claiming that Jesus Christ is the season’s only source of meaning, is a blatant audacity of narrow-minded fundamentalist and evangelical Christians. Christians should be more sensitive not to monopolize the winter solstice celebration and should acknowledge the fact that most—if not all—material symbolisms in Christmas originate from the pagan realm. The legacy of the ancient pagans is still carried on by modern pagans who continue to use the ancient material symbolisms inherited from their precursors with comparable spiritual intensity and pomp.

Yule-Goddess-5x7-Greeting-Card.jpg

It is tragic that the originally spiritual celebration of the pagan winter solstice has been ruined by the materialism of modern nominal Christianity. The modern winter solstice celebration has become commercialized and has lost, not only the graciousness originally associated with ancient pagan spirituality, but also the magnanimity of Christian virtues exemplified by the teachings of Jesus Christ.

“The black moment is the moment when the real message of transformation is going to come. At the darkest moment comes the light.” – Joseph Campbell

Even Christianity has been made seasonal by Christmas, which has become the only time of the year when nominal Christians affirm their shallow Christianity through their superficial adoration of their so-called Lord. I think that Christians, to be true to their commitment, should draw their inspiration and get moved to action not only during the Christmas season but also on a daily basis by the words of wisdom and example of Jesus. A truer spirit of Christianity might well reside in the pagan spirituality that has animated the ancient winter solstice celebration with its promise of renewed hope, faith in the restorative cosmic forces and love of life.

Merry Yuletide Season to All!

RUEL F. PEPA writes for News Junkie Post.

samedi, 13 décembre 2014

Rites païens du berceau à la tombe

 

Sortie aux Editions de la Fôret du premier tome d’une série de trois consacrée aux rites païens du berceau à la tombe.

Ce premier tome aborde les thèmes de la naissance et de l’enfance. Nombre de jeunes couples et parents identitaires pourront se reporter à ce livre, véritable bréviaire en la matière.

Prix: 16€ + frais de ports (2,10 € France uniquement et 4,15 € Europe)

Terre et Peuple - BP 38 - 04300 Forcalquier

lundi, 01 décembre 2014

Feronia e i culti femminili legati alle acque

Intervento di Renato Del Ponte al convegno "Feronia e i culti femminili legati alle acque" organizzato a Verona il 4 Maggio 2012

vendredi, 24 octobre 2014

Alain Daniélou’s Virtue, Success, Pleasure, & Liberation

Alain Daniélou’s Virtue, Success, Pleasure, & Liberation

By Collin Cleary 

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com

Alain Daniélou
Virtue, Success, Pleasure, and Liberation: The Four Aims of Life in the Tradition of Ancient India [2]
Rochester, Vermont: Inner Traditions, 1993.

danndex.jpgOne hears a great deal today about “multiculturalism,” and the multicultural society. We (i.e., we Americans) are told that ours is a multicultural society. But, curiously, multiculturalism is also spoken of as a goal. What this reveals is that multiculturalism is not simply the recognition and affirmation of the fact that the U.S.A. is made up of different people from different cultural backgrounds. Instead, multiculturalism is an ideology which is predicated on cultural relativism. Its proponents want to convince people that (a) all cultures are equally good, rich, interesting, and wholesome, and that (b) a multicultural society can exist in which no one culture is dominant. The first idea is absurd, the second is impossible.

The apostles of multiculturalism are moved less by a genuine desire to “celebrate diversity” than by a hatred for Northern European culture, which is the semi-official, dominant culture of America. Indeed, multiculturalists generally nurture the most naive and simplistic ideas of what a culture is. Their conception of “culture” is fixated at the perceptual level: culture is costume,music, dance, decoration, food. What is essential to culture, however, is a certain Weltanschauung: a view of the world, and of human nature. It is in their response to these world views that multiculturalists reveal their true colors, for they tolerate and permit only those elements of a culture’s world view that do not conflict with liberal ideology.

Out of one side of their mouths, the multiculturalists tell us that one cannot judge a culture, that morality is culturally relative, that cultures are not better or worse, just “different,” and that we must revel in these differences. Thus, the English do not drive on the “wrong” side of the road, merely the left side. But when it’s not a matter of traffic laws, but a matter of severed clitorises, then the other, louder side of the multiculturalists’ mouths open, and they tell us that this sort of thing isn’t just different, it’s evil. In addition to this, one also sees that multiculturalism involves a relentless trivialization of important cultural differences. Thus, college students are encouraged to see religion almost as a matter of “local color.” Isn’t it wonderful that the Indians cook such spicy food, and worship such colorful gods! Isn’t it all terribly charming? They are further encouraged to view religion as a thoroughly irrational affair. Rather than encouraging an appreciation for different faiths, what this produces is a condescending attitude, and resistance to taking the claims of religion seriously when they conflict with the “rational” agenda of modern liberalism.

Indeed, multiculturalism is so anti-cultural that one is tempted to see behind it an even deeper, more sinister agenda. Perhaps the whole idea is to deliberately gut the world’s cultures, reducing their differences to matters of dress and cuisine, and to replace those earthborn guts with a plastic, Naugahyde culture of secularism, scientism, and egalitarianism. Why? Because real, significant cultural differences make it very hard for our corporations to do business overseas and to sell their wares. Solution: homogenization masquerading as “celebration of diversity.” The multiculturalists are right when they declare that de facto, the United States is a multicultural society. But there has never been a multicultural society in the history of the world in which there was not one dominant culture which provided a framework allowing the others to co-exist. To the multiculturalist, the unacknowledged framework is modern liberalism. I will assume that I do not have to rehearse for my readers the many arguments for why modern liberalism is untenable as a long-term societal framework.Where should we look, then, for a framework for a multicultural society? Why not look to the Indian caste system? It was the caste system that allowed Aryan and non-Aryan to co-exist peacefully in India for centuries.

The liberals will immediately object that the caste system is oppressive and unjust. In Virtue, Success, Pleasure and Liberation, however, Alain Daniélou argues that the caste system is actually a supremely just and peaceful arrangement. It is just because it is built on a recognition of real human difference; a “celebration of diversity,” if you will. Aristotle held that justice is treating equals equally, and unequals unequally. If people are not the same, then it is a mistake to treat them as if they are. The caste system is built on the idea that some human beings are born to work, others to fight and lead, and others to pray. The caste system gives to each human being a place, a community, a code of ethics, and a sense of identity and pride. Daniélou points out that although the system involves hierarchy, each level of the hierarchy is regarded as intrinsically valuable and as essential. Each plays a role that is regarded as important and indispensable. Thus, it is the caste system which truly affirms that different groups are merely different, not better or worse.

Is Daniélou whitewashing the caste system? Consider the words he quotes from the Mahabharata: “There is no superior caste. The Universe is the work of the Immense Being. The beings created by him were only divided into castes according to their aptitude.” But what of individuals born to the wrong caste? For example, what of a child born to the merchant class who shows aptitude to be a priest or scholar? Such things happen. Daniélou tells us that exceptional individuals are allowed to live “outside” the caste system, and are accepted as valuable members of the society as a whole. Modern society is structured on the premise that everyone is exceptional and can make up his mind what he wants to do. Given that sort of freedom, most people get lost — as witness the modern phenomenon of the “slacker,” or the flotsam and jetsam going in and out of psychiatrists’ offices every day.

Despite what I have said, this book is not a treatise on the caste system, but on the four things that all human lives must possess or achieve in order to be complete. In discussing virtue, success, pleasure, and liberation, Daniélou quotes extensively from ancient Indian texts, offering us an abundance of excellent advice about how to understand life and to live well. Indeed, this is really a book about how to lead a truly human life. Daniélou places the four aims in a cosmic context, showing how the same fourfold division is present in all levels of reality. It is present, of course, in the four castes (worker/artisan, producer/merchant, warrior/aristocrat, priest/scholar), and in the four stages of biological development (childhood, youth, maturity, old age), the four seasons, the four elements, the four races of humanity (black, yellow, red, white), the cycle of ages (yugas), the four bodily functions (digestion, assimilation, circulation, excretion), and the four points of the compass (in this order, significantly: south, east, west, north).

This is an excellent companion volume to Daniélou’s The Myths and Gods of India [3].

Source: Tyr, vol.. 1 (Atlanta: Ultra, 2002).

 


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2014/10/virtue-success-pleasure-liberation/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://www.counter-currents.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Virtue.jpg

[2] Virtue, Success, Pleasure, and Liberation: The Four Aims of Life in the Tradition of Ancient India: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005IQ6AVY/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B005IQ6AVY&linkCode=as2&tag=countecurrenp-20&linkId=2SMLM6Q3BGWZDR7W

[3] The Myths and Gods of India: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005PQUZ3G/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B005PQUZ3G&linkCode=as2&tag=countecurrenp-20&linkId=7R45BK5EQM4HKVC3

Alain Daniélou’s The Myths & Gods of India

dan1411091265.jpg

Alain Daniélou’s The Myths & Gods of India

By Collin Cleary

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com

Alain Daniélou
The Myths and Gods of India [2]
Rochester, Vermont: Inner Traditions, 1991.
(Originally published as Hindu Polytheism by Bollingen Foundation, New York, 1964.)

Typically, those who profess an interest in what might be called “Indo-European spirituality” gravitate toward either the Celtic or Germanic traditions. The Indian tradition tends to be ignored. In part, this is because present-day Indians seem so different from us. We think of their culture and philosophy as “Eastern,” as alien. Physically, the Indians look very different from those of European descent (though higher caste Indians tend to look very European, right down to lighter skin and hair, and sometimes blue eyes). But if we wish to rediscover the religion and traditions of our ancestors, what better place is there to begin than with India? The oldest Indo-European texts are the Vedas, after all. To be sure, it is hard to separate what comes from the ancient Aryans in Indian religion, myth, and mysticism, and what was contributed by the indigenous peoples conquered by the Aryans. But the same problem exists with respect to the Celtic and Germanic traditions. In addition, we know far more about the culture and religion of the ancient Aryans who invaded India, than we do about the culture and religion of the Celts and the Vikings. For one thing, more ancient texts survive in India. Therefore, anyone wishing to re-construct the “old ways” must become deeply immersed in all things Indian.

It is a cliche to state this in a review, but I write the following with total sincerity: if you read only one book on Hinduism, it must be Daniélou’s Myths and Gods of India. Indeed, it is hard to imagine why one would need to read any other. Danielou’s account of Hinduism is exhaustive, profound, and detailed. The book contains, first of all, cogent arguments on behalf of polytheism.

It details the Indian cosmogony and cosmology; the nature of Space, Time, and Thought; the nature of Brahman and Maya. Daniélou gives a complete description of every major Hindu divinity in terms of his or her function, myths, and symbolism. He details the minor gods and genii. He discusses the theory behind Mantras and Yantras. There is even extensive coverage of ritual, and the manner in which the gods must be worshiped. Alain Daniélou was born in 1907 in Paris. He was a true Renaissance man, trained in music, painting, and dance. He gave recitals and exhibited his paintings. Daniélou was also an avid sportsman: a canoeing champion, and an expert race-car driver.

He was also homosexual. Daniélou and his gay lover ventured to India, traveling around in a deluxe, Silverstream camper imported from southern California, photographing erotic sculpture. They later settled down in a Maharajah’s estate on the banks of the Ganges and devoted themselves to Sanskrit, Hinduism, music, and entertaining. Daniélou gradually “went native” and stayed in India many years. In time, he became known throughout the world as an authority on Indian music and culture. He published works dealing with Hindu religion, society, music, sculpture, architecture, and other topics. It was Daniélou, more than anyone else, who was responsible for popularizing Indian music in the West (among other things, he was the “discoverer” of Ravi Shankar). Daniélou died in 1994.

The Myths and Gods of India is a delight to read, but it can also be treated as a reference work for those needing a clear and accurate account of various gods or Hindu religious concepts. For the student of Inda-European culture, the book is a treasure trove. Indeed, those who are familiar with the Inda-European comparativist school of Georges Dumézil, Jaan Puhvel, and others, will get the most out of this book. I will offer a few brief examples here.

Daniélou writes on page 27 that “Human beings, according to their nature and stage of development, are inclined toward . . . different aspects of the Cosmic Being. Those in whom consciousness is predominant worship the gods (deva); those in whom action or existence predominates worship genii (yaksha) and antigods (asura); and those in whom enjoyment or sensation predominates worship ghosts and spirits (bhuta and preta).” This suggests, of course, the Inda-European tripartition identified by Dumézil. On page 66 we learn that Soma was “brought to earth by a large hawk,” just as Odin, in the form of an eagle, brought mead to the JEsir. On page 87 we are told that “The earth is also represented as a goddess, or as a cow that feeds everyone with her milk. She is the mother of life, the substance of all things.” What can this remind us of, except the Norse Audumla?

There also seem to be parallels between Agni (the god of fire) and Loki. Like Loki, Agni is an outcast among the gods. Daniélou tells us further that, “The fire of destruction, Agni’s most fearful form, was born of the primeval waters and remains hidden under the sea, ever ready to destroy the world” (p. 89). This is reminiscent of the Midgard Serpent, the progeny of Loki. Page 151:
“When Vishnu sleeps, the universe dissolves into its formless state, represented as the causal ocean. The remnants of manifestation are represented as the serpent Remainder (Sesa) coiled upon itself and floating upon the abysmal waters.”

Daniélou tells us (p. 92) that “the sun . . . is envisaged [by the Hindus] under two aspects. As one of the spheres, one of the Vasus, the physical sun is the celestial form of fire, of agni. As the source of light, of warmth, of life, of knowledge, the solar energy is the source of all life, represented in the twelve sons-of-the-Primordial-Vastness (Adityas), the twelve sovereign principles.” In Futhark (pp. 51-52), Edred Thorsson tells us that “The sun was known by two special names in the North . . . Sol represents the phenomenon, while sunna is the noumenon, the spiritual power residing in the concept.” Also, the “twelve sons-of-the-Primordial-Vastness” immanent within the solar energy must remind us of the twelve sig-runes that make up the Wewelsburg “sun-wheel” of Karl Maria Wiligut.

Page 99: “When the gods were receiving the ambrosia of immortality, the Moon [Soma; equivalent to Mead] detected the anti-god Rahu disguised as a god. Because of the Moon Rahu had to die, but although his head was severed from his body, he could not truly die, for he had tasted the ambrosia. His head remained alive.” Mimir?

Page 103: “Rudra, the lord of tears, is said to have sprung from the forehead of the Immense-Being (Brahma) and, at the command of that god, to have divided himself into a male form and a female form . . . “Athena?

Page 103: “The Maruts (immortals) are a restless, warlike troupe of flashy young men, transposition in space of the hordes of young warriors called the marya (mortals). . . . They are the embodiment of moral and heroic deeds and of the exuberance of youth.” Maruts = Einherjar; Marya = Indo-European Männerbünde. Page 104: “The Maruts are the friends of Indra, the wielder of the thunderbolt . . .” Thor? Page 110: Indra’s thunderbolt is “shaped like a mace … ”

Page 111: “Indra had been the deity worshiped among the pastoral people of Vraja.” Again, just as Thor was.

Page 118: Varuna “is the ruler of the ‘other side,’ of the invisible world.” He is “said to be an antigod, a magician.” Odin? Page 119: “He catches the evildoers and binds them with his noose.” Criminals sacrificed to Odin were hung. Varuna also “knows the track of birds in the sky,” just as Odin knows the track of Huginn and Muninn.

Page 132: The god of death is named Yama, which means “Twin” (Ymir). “Yama’s brother is the lawgiver, Manu, who shares with him the title of progenitor of mankind.” Yama “owns two four-eyed dogs with wide nostrils . . . They watch the path of the dead.” What can this remind us of except the Greek hellhound, Cerberus?

Page 138: “In contrast to the gods, the antigods [asura] are the inclinations of the senses which, by their nature, belong to the obscuring tendency, and which delight in life, that is, in the activities of the life energies in all the fields of sensation.” This is an accurate description of the Norse Vanir. Asura is cognate with Aesir, so, oddly enough, the term shifts meaning either in the Norse or the Indian tradition.

Page 159: The four ages (yugas) are represented as white (the golden age), red, yellow, and black (the dark age). The stages of the alchemical process (as represented in the West) are black, white, yellow, and red.

Pages 243-45 detail the Upanishadic account of creation out of the primal man Purusha: “He desired a second. He became as large as a woman and man in close embrace. He divided himself into two. From him arose a husband and a wife. Hence it is that everyone is but half a being. The vacant space is filled by a wife.” This is extraordinarily similar to the account of the creation of
men and woman given by Aristophanes in Plato’s Symposium. The world is then created out of Purusha’s body-just as the world is created out of Ymir’s body in Norse myth. “The virile member was separated; from this virile member came forth semen and from semen the earthly waters.” This is identical to the account of the creation of the ocean in the Greek myth of the sacrifice of Ouranos by Kronos.

The account of the hero Kumara/Skana (pp. 297-300) is strikingly like the saga of Sigurd, and also similar in some respects to the Parzival of Wolfram von Eschenbach. The “essences” (apsaras; pp. 304-305) are “water nymphs, eternally young women who are the courtesans and dancers of heaven.” Rhine Maidens? “They are depicted as uncommonly beautiful, with lotus eyes, slender waists, and large hips. By their languid postures and sweet words they rob those who see them of their wisdom and their intellect.” Sirens? “One can master them by stealing their clothes while they bathe. They choose lovers among the dead fallen on the battlefield.” Valkyries?

The above merely scratches the surface of this immensely rich text, which demands careful study and multiple readings.

 


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2014/10/alain-danielous-the-myths-and-gods-of-india/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://www.counter-currents.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/MythsandGodsofIndia.jpg

[2] The Myths and Gods of India: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0892813547/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=0892813547&linkCode=as2&tag=countecurrenp-20&linkId=IH7O6QJKVC7I7LVQ

jeudi, 23 octobre 2014

Paganism & Christianity, Nietzsche & Evola

evola-nietzsche-na-h.png

Paganism & Christianity, Nietzsche & Evola

By Jonathan Bowden 

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com

Editor’s Note:

This text continues the transcript by V. S. of Jonathan Bowden’s interview at the Union Jack Club in London on Saturday, November 21, 2009, after his lecture/performance on Punch and Judy [2]. The title is editorial. 

Q: When did you decide to convert to paganism and why?

B: Well, I never really converted to paganism. I mean, there are some orthodox pagans, if you can have such a thing, who probably think I am not one. But I’m a Nietzschean and that’s a different system. Somebody made this for me. [Points to odal rune pendant.] And I like Odinic paganism sort of as an objectification of my sort of sensibility. Does one believe the gods objectively exist in another realm? Well, you see, religion is a philosophy about life which is sacristic and has rituals in which you partly act out, therefore it’s more important because it’s made slightly more concrete than ideas or it’s really just based upon ideas. There are relatively simple but powerful ideas at the crux of all the big religious systems. Most people are born in a system and just accept that and go along with it as long as it’s not too onerous or they feel like they live their life through it properly.

I just agree with the ethics of that type of Nordic paganism, which is really how the Vikings lived and how they behaved. I’m less concerned with small groups, which I respect. I like the Odinic Rite, but I personally believe that those sorts of things will only ever activate post-modern minorities and very small ones at that.

I think people should identify with what they think they are and the values that they hold. This symbol really means strength or courage or masculinity or the first man or the first principle of war or the metaphysics of conflict. So, I just think it’s a positive system of value.

I never really was a Christian. Culturally, I have great admiration for elements of Christian art. More so than most people who are pagan who have violently reacted against it. I don’t really share that emotionalism. But I don’t agree with Christian ethics. Deep down, they’ve ruined the West, and we’re in the state that we are because of them.

Q: Just added on to that: How do we create more Nietzscheans? How do we spread Nietzscheanism as a religion, as an idea?

B: You’ve got to get people quite young. I think you’ve got to introduce alternative value systems to them. This is a society that says weakness is good, weakness should be pitied, the ill are weak, the disabled are weak, people who’ve got various things wrong with them (too fat, too thin, bits dropping off) they need help. They may need help. But the value system that lies behind that desire to help worships the fact of weakness and the fact that people are broken. If you worship the idea of strength and tell the weak to become stronger, which is a reverse idea for helping them essentially. You help them in order to get stronger. You totally reverse the energy pattern and you’ve reversed the system of morals that exists in this culture now. You’ve reversed the sort of things that Rowan Williams or his predecessor or his likely successor always says, basically. I think that’s what you have to do.

I personally think it’s a moral revolution, not anything political, that will save the West, because all the technology is here, all the systems of power are here. You only have to change what’s in people’s minds. It’s very difficult though.

Q: So, to a young person watching this video, never heard of you before, where would he go to find out about Nietzscheanism?

B: Just go to the Wikipedia page, surprisingly, although it’s a bit trivial, is actually quite accurate in a tendentious way. Although some of the philosophical debates about him and the genealogy of his works might confuse people because it views it in an academic way. And you don’t need to put his name to it. There’s a cluster of power-moral, individualistic, elitist, partly antinomian, partly gnostic, partly not, partly pagan, vitalist and other ideas which go with that sort of area.

Strength is morality. Weakness is sin. Weakness requires punishment. If you’re weak, if you’re obese, if you’re a drug addict, become less so. Become stronger. Move towards the sun. Become more coherent. Become more articulate. Cast more of a shadow. It’s almost a type of positive behaviorism in some ways. But it’s not somebody wagging their finger and so on, because you’re doing it for yourself. It comes from inside.

Q2: Do you not think though that Nietzscheanism doesn’t have a transcendental element to it?

B: That’s why I’m wearing this [rune pendant], you see, because I probably think there ought to be such a thing. Many people need to go beyond that. If his thinking before he went mad, probably because he had tertiary syphilis, it’s up to sort of 1880, so we’re talking about thinking that’s 130 years old.

I think in some ways he’s an anatomist of Christianity’s decline, because Christianity been declining mentally and in some ways extending out into the Third World where it’s real catchment area now is. I mean, there will be a non-White pope soon. Christianity will begin to wear the face of the south very soon. It’s the ideal religion for the south. It’s pity for those who fail, for those who are weak, for those who are hungry, for those who are broken. Have pity on your children, O Lord. It’s an ideal religion. Don’t take it through violence or fear or aggression. Submit and be thankful for what He will give you in His wisdom.

But it’s ruining us. For centuries we were strong even despite that faith, but of course we made use of it. The part that fits us is the extreme transcendence of Christian doctrine. That’s what Indo-Europeans like about that faith. The enormous vaulting cathedrals, the Gothic idea that you can go up and up and up. It’s that element in it that we like, and we made into ourselves. But we forgot the ethical substratum. We forgot the sort of troll-like ethical element that there is no other value but sympathy, there is no other value than compassion, that love is the basis of all life. And ultimately that is a feminine view of civilization which will lead to its collapse in masculine terms.

Q2: How would you view the works of Julius Evola?

B: Yes, they’re the counter-balance to Nietzsche. There is a lot of religious elements in there of a perennialist sort that a lot of modern minds can’t accept. You see, Nietzsche is a switchblade, and nearly all people in this society are modern even if they think they’re not. Nietzsche is a modern thinker. Nietzsche is a modernist. Nietzsche can reach the modern mind. Nietzsche’s the most Right-wing formulation within the modern mind that people can accept.

My view is that people who accept Evola straight out aren’t living in the modern world. That’s not a criticism. It’s a description of where they are. I think for people to become illiberal they have to become illiberal first within the modern world. Some people would say you have to go outside of it. You know, the culture of the ruins and the revolt against the modern world, per se. But I personally think that we’re in modernity.

But there will be people who go to Nietzsche and Thus Spake Zarathustra, which is really a semi- or pseudo-religious text, is not enough and they’ll want to go beyond that and they’ll want a degree and a tier of religiosity. The dilemma always in the West is what to choose. Back to Christianity or on to paganism? Which system do you choose?

Evola said he was a Catholic pagan, didn’t he? One knows what he means. But I see paganism peeping out of everything. I see paganism peeping out of Protestantism, the most Jewish form of Christianity, through its power-individualism and its extremist individuality (Kierkegaard, Carlyle, Nietzsche). I see paganism saturating Catholicism and peeping out of it at every turn, aesthetically, artistically, the art of the Renaissance, the return of the Greco-Roman sensibility, the humanism of the ancient world. Some of the greatest classicists were Medieval Popes and so on. I see it just looming out. The whole structure of the Catholic Church is a Roman imperial structure, Christianized. So, I see it peeping out.

Our law is Roman. All of our leaders were educated and steeped in the classical world to provide a dialectical corollary to Christianity without them being told that’s what is happening. The decline of the classics is partly because people don’t want to go back there, basically. So, you don’t teach it to anyone apart from tiny little public school elites, which are .2% of the population who read a few authors who no one else even knows exist. You know, big deal.

The difficulty with Evola is that it’s a very great leap for the modern mind. Although in his sensibility, I agree with his sensibility, really. I agree with him going out amidst the bombings, not caring. I agree with that sort of attitude towards life, which is an aristocratic attitude towards life. But we’re living in a junk food, liberal, low middle class society. You’ve got to start where you are. I think Nietzsche is strong enough meat for most people and is far, far, far too strong for 80% now.

Today, the mentally disabled have been allowed into the Paralympics. So, you will have the 100 yard cerebral palsy dash at the next Olympics in London in 2012. This is the world we’re living in. Nietzsche would say that’s ridiculous and so on. And that is a shocking and transgressive and morally ugly attitude from the contemporary news that we see. So, it’s almost as if Nietzsche’s tough enough for this moment.

But I’m interesting in that he said, “God is dead in the minds of men.” That doesn’t necessarily mean, of course, although he was a militant atheist, he’s living open the idea that . . . [God objectively exists—Ed.]. You see, the Christian idea of God was dying around him, mentally, and it has died. I mean, hardly anyone really, deep down, believes that now. Even the people who say that they do don’t in the way that they did 100 years ago or their predecessors did.

So, it has died, but I think there are metaphysically objectivist standards outside life. Whether our civilization can revive without a return to them is very open. It’s very questionable. Where that discourse is to come from is . . . The tragedy would be if Christianity sort of facilitated our greatness, but ended up ruining us, which of course might be the true thesis.

Now we’re getting into deep waters.

Q: What is your view of Abrahamic religions?

B: I think religion is a good thing. The Right always supports the right of religion to exist. Religion does cross ethnic and racial boundaries. Afghanistan was Buddhist once. I prefer people to have some sort of religious viewpoint, even the most tepid sort of thing, but none at all, because at least there is a structure that is in some sense prior.

But, personally, I prefer tribally based religions. I prefer religions that are about blood and genetics and honor and identity and are nominalist and that are specific. But I think people will adopt different systems because they’re physiologically different even within their group. You can see that about certain people. Certain people, Christianity suits them very well and they can be quite patriotic and quite decent people and so on in that system and there we are. But for me? No.

I’m a barbarian in some ways. People can worship what gods they want within the Western tradition, and that’s all right.

 


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2014/10/paganism-christianity-nietzsche-evola/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://www.counter-currents.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/NietzscheSeated.jpg

[2] Punch and Judy: http://www.counter-currents.com/2013/03/the-real-meaning-of-punch-and-judy/

vendredi, 10 octobre 2014

Bhagavad-Gîtâ - Le Chant du Bienheureux

bhagavad-gita-le-chant-du-bienheureux.jpg

Bhagavad-Gîtâ: le Chant du Bienheureux

108 pages. Traduit du sanskrit par Emile Burnouf et présenté par le Pr. Jean Haudry.

Elément central du Mahâbhârata, connu pour être la plus grande épopée de la mythologie hindoue, la Bhagavad-Gîtâ (« Chant du Bienheureux ») est un des écrits fondamentaux de l’Hindouisme qui s’inscrit dans la tradition héroïque indo-européenne.

Il s’agit d’un dialogue dans lequel le Seigneur Krishna, 8e avatar de Vishnou, tend à dissiper le doute chez le kshatriya Arjuna au moment d’une bataille qui risque de faire nombre de morts parmi ceux que ce dernier aime.

Composé de 18 chapitres et vraisemblablement rédigé entre les Ve et IIe siècles av. J.-C., l’intérêt capital de ce texte sacré tient du fait qu’il invite à dépasser le brahmanisme sans le répudier pour autant.

Au-delà de toutes les sensibilités spirituelles, la Bhagavad-Gîtâ nous enseigne avant tout la dévotion et le détachement pour lesquels le verset II.38 semble parfaitement convenir : « Tiens pour égaux plaisir et peine, gain et perte, et sois tout entier à la bataille : ainsi tu éviteras le péché . »

Pour commander auprès des Editions du Lore: http://www.ladiffusiondulore.fr/antiquite/379-bhagavad-gita-le-chant-du-bienheureux.html

mardi, 07 octobre 2014

Pour un paganisme cosmique

orientations-pour-un-paganisme-cosmique.jpg

Pour un paganisme cosmique

140 pages. Papier glacé 130gr/m2

Véritable compendium, cet ouvrage n’a pas pour objectif de décider à la place du lecteur mais a été conçu dans le but de l’orienter vers divers concepts inhérents à l’idée d’un paganisme cosmique, où tout est mouvement, cette impermanence du Devenir.

Construit à partir de citations rigoureusement classées par thèmes et commentées humblement par Amaury Petitloup, ce compendium regroupe autant la sagesse et le savoir des textes sacrés de l’Antiquité que la pensée d’auteurs plus contemporains dont certains n’étaient jusqu’à présent pas accessibles en langue française.

Un livre unique en son genre que le lecteur aura plaisir à consulter tout au long des différentes étapes de son existence.

Voici quelques-uns des thèmes abordés :

Palimpeste - Religions-racines - Ecriture primordiale - Mémoire ancestrale - Lieu sacrés et Omphalos - L’intuition surhumaniste - Réaction anti-dualiste - Panenthéisme - Monisme - Hiérarchie divine - La Grande Synthèse - Rites - Chaos primordial - Principe créateur - Vers un nouveau paganisme : erreurs à éviter...

Pour commander auprès des Editions du Lore:

http://www.ladiffusiondulore.fr/editions-du-lore/572-orientations-pour-un-paganisme-cosmique.html

 

17:16 Publié dans Livre, Livre, Traditions | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) | Tags : paganisme, livre, traditions | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook

lundi, 03 février 2014

L'hiver chez les anciens scandinaves

MAN_OC~1.JPG

L'hiver chez les anciens scandinaves

Joëlle Delacroix *
Ex: http://www.metamag.fr

L'année viking se découpe en deux saisons ou misseri : le misseri d'été commence mi-avril et dure jusqu'à mi-septembre. Le misseri d'hiver correspond à l'autre semestre. L'hiver s'installe mi-novembre et les mois qui le constituent (ýlir, jólmánađr, þorri, gói) sont durs. La neige, la glace, le vent et la nuit étreignent l'univers des Vikings. Ull, dieu de l'hiver, tient le monde entre ses mains. C'est un dieu Ase, fils de Sif, adopté par Þórr. Excellent chasseur, adepte des sports d'hiver, il habite Ydalir, la vallée des Ifs, un pays de montagnes enneigées. Son épouse Skadi est une géante du froid et de la montagne. C'est un dieu important de la mythologie scandinave dans les temps anciens, mais son rôle a été amoindri au profit d'Óđinn.
 
La grande fête du solstice d'hiver, Jól, coupe heureusement cette période. Elle célèbre l'allongement des jours et l'espérance en la saison nouvelle. Elle est entourée de tout un ensemble de croyances liées au panthéon des dieux scandinaves. Lors de la christianisation des Vikings, l'église a remplacé cette fête par les fêtes de Noël.

La saison de l'hiver chez les anciens Scandinaves.

A l'approche de la mauvaise saison, le bóndi, homme libre de la société viking, a pris soin de rentrer du bois et de la tourbe qui serviront à chauffer sa maison. Il a veillé également à remettre en état les différents bâtiments de sa ferme. Le foin est rentré ; les animaux, notamment les moutons, ont été rassemblés ; les réserves de viande salée et de poissons séchés sont constituées. Maintenant que l'hiver est venu, l'activité se concentre dans la skáli, bâtiment principal de la ferme scandinave.

Les femmes se consacrent aux travaux de tapisserie, de broderie et de tissage, qui font partie de leurs prérogatives. Frigg, la femme d'Óđinn, file elle-même. Elle connaît le destin de chaque homme et chaque dieu, mais elle ne partage ce savoir avec personne. A ce titre, elle tisse le fil utilisé par les Nornes (Urd - le passé -, Verdande - le présent - Skuld - l'avenir) pour construire la destinée des mortels.

Les hommes veillent à réparer les outils endommagés. Ils s'adonnent aux travaux de sculpture du bois ou de forge qui permettront de construire et parer bateaux, traîneaux ou chariots. Ils s'occupent des bêtes, rentrées dans la bâtisse adjacente. Pour se détendre, la maisonnée joue à des jeux de tables ou aux dés. Hommes et femmes racontent des histoires, des contes, les histoires des dieux ou évoquent les souvenirs de leurs expéditions. Dans la demeure du chef viking, le scalde récite les poésies qui louent les exploits de son maître.

S'il doit sortir, le Viking chausse ses skis ou ses patins. Il peut aller chasser ou pêcher, ceci en creusant un simple trou dans la glace. Ces sports d'hiver donnent lieu également à des jeux voire à des compétitions.

La fête de Jól.

La fête de Jól, qui dure plusieurs jours, survient pour rompre l'isolement et fêter le solstice d'hiver. Cette réjouissance est l'occasion d'un sacrifice, le blót, au cours duquel un porc engraissé pour l'occasion ou un cheval est sacrifié. Le sang de l'animal sacrifié est recueilli dans un récipient spécial, le hlautbolli, et sert ensuite à la consultation des augures. Plus spécialement, le blót permet au Viking, non pas d'influencer son destin en le connaissant par avance, car il sait que « nul ne survit d'un soir à la sentence des Nornes », mais plutôt à capter des forces bénéfices. En l'occurrence, lors du sacrifice de Jól, il s'agit de forces bénéfiques liées aux puissances de la fertilité et du renouveau, les forces des Alfes.

Un grand festin est apprêté au cours duquel on boit la bière brassée spécifiquement pour cette fête – la jólaöl -, et l'on mange la chair bouillie de l'animal sacrifié. Des toasts sont portés en l'honneur des ancêtres et des dieux. On boit beaucoup ; on mange copieusement. Sans doute, au tout début du banquet, les invités se sont-ils juré de ne pas tenir compte des paroles prononcées sous l'emprise de l'ivresse, comme le veut la coutume. Toutes sortes de divertissements, poèmes, danses, chants, jeux se succèdent. La fête de Jól, à l'instar des fêtes dédiées au solstice d'hiver, est donc liée aux puissances de la fertilité et du renouveau, représentées dans le panthéon scandinave par les Alfes, des divinités anciennes, énigmatiques, placées apparemment au même rang que les Vanes et les Ases. Ces divinités régissent les forces de la fertilité, de la végétation et du renouveau. Elles sont également liées au culte des ancêtres.

Grímnismá - les dits de Grímnir - l'un des poèmes mythologiques de l'Edda poétique présente Freyr comme le seigneur du Álfheimr, la demeure des Alfes. C'est un dieu Vane, le frère de Freyja, la déesse de l'amour. Il est lui-même dieu de la fertilité et l'un des dieux les plus populaires, avec Þórr. Il a reçu Álfheimr et le royaume associé en cadeau, lorsqu'en enfant, il a perdu sa première dent. Il possède un sanglier magique aux soies d'or, qu'il peut chevaucher ou atteler à son chariot. Ainsi, le porc ou sanglier et encore le cheval sont les animaux qui lui sont les plus couramment associés. C'est en son honneur qu'ils sont donc sacrifiés lors des fêtes de Jól. De nos jours, d'ailleurs, le jambon traditionnellement servi à Noël en Suède rappelle ces offrandes faites à Freyr. Dans les campagnes, on continue de brasser la bière spécifiquement pour Noël.

 
La fête de Jól est aussi liée au culte des ancêtres, culte que véhiculent également les Alfes. A cette occasion, Óđinn traverse le ciel, suivi de sa Chasse Sauvage, assemblée composée des guerriers morts au combat qui, la nuit venue, retournent à la Vallhöll, le palais du dieu, pour festoyer. Óđinn, lui-même, chevauche Sleipnirr, son cheval à huit pattes ; des chiens et des chevaux noirs l'escortent. Curieux banquet, auquel assistent toutes les nuits les Einherjar, les guerriers morts au combat et choisis par les Valkyries, filles d'Óđinn, pour gagner la Valhöll. Ils ne manquent ni d'hydromel ni de viande. La boisson est fournie en abondance par la chèvre Heiđrún, qui, juchée sur le toit de la Vallhöll, broute les jeunes feuilles du frêne Yggdrasil. Le cuisinier fait bouillir chaque nuit la chair du sanglier Sæhrímnir qui ressuscite ensuite.

Dans cette Chasse Sauvage du solstice d'hiver, Óđinn est parfois décrit comme étant accompagné par Dame Hölle ou Holda, qui tire avec elle un chariot peuplé d'enfants en bas âge. Ce personnage, parfois associé à Frigg l'épouse d'Óđinn en raison de son activité de filage ou à Hel, la déesse de la mort, à cause de son aspect effroyable, dispose chez elle d'un lac dans lequel elle dépose les âmes des enfants morts.

En savoir plus :
• Boyer Régis, La vie quotidienne des Vikings (800-1050), Editions Hachette
• Boyer Régis, Les Vikings, Editions Plon
• Marillier Bernard, BA.BA Vikings, Pardès
• Anne-Laure d'Apremont, BA.BA Tradition Nordique, volume 2
• Jean Renaud, Les dieux des Vikings, Ouest France Editions

* article paru sur le site Histoire pour tous

samedi, 18 janvier 2014

La fête de la Sainte Lumière

 UNE_PA~1.JPG

La fête de la Sainte Lumière

 

(Epiphanie, Ste. Maigre)

  

par le Dr. COREMANS

 

Elles sont passées, les douze nuits [de la période solstitiale, ndlr]; le monde souterrain s'est fermé. La terre appartient aux vivants, au présent, à l'avenir; les morts, le passé gîtent dans le sombre empire de Hella. La fête du jour annonce l'espoir, le futur bonheur! Pour quelques heures, les dignitaires, élus la veille, entrent en fonctions. C'est à eux à justifier le choix du hasard, s'ils veulent que le peuple le ratifie vers l'Iostur  ou au champ de Mai. En attendant, on se livre à la joie. La Ste Lumière éclaire l'oie du banquet, les cornes à boire se remplissent et se vident bravement! Grimm croit que cette fête était consacrée à Berchta ou Helle, en sa qualité de déité lunaire, à Helle qui brille et qui éclaire au milieu des ténèbres. Tout en fêtant la renaissance du soleil, nos ancêtres ne voulaient pas oublier les bienfaits de l'astre qui préside aux nuits raffraîchissantes de l'été, à la rosée si salutaire aux plantes, après les brûlantes journées estivales. N'omettons pas, en outre, de faire remarquer que si la science nie l'influence de la lune sur les variations du temps, le peuple y croyait et y croit encore partout. 

 

Néanmoins, si l'on témoignait de l'attachement et de la reconnaissance à la bonne déesse, on ne se montrait pas moins sévère à l'égard des génies ténébreux de mort et de destruction sur lesquels elle règne dans les profondeurs de la terre. On vengeait sur eux les outrages qu'ils avaient fait souffrir, pendant six mois, aux déités bienfaisantes de la lumière. C'est ainsi, comme nous l'avons dit, qu'en Italie, la Béfana, représentée sous les traits d'une femme maigre et décharnée, est maltraitée, lapidée et enfin sciée par le peuple, le treizième jour après les fêtes de Noël. Des usages de ce genre se rencontrent aussi dans les contrées méridionales de l'Allemagne, qui avoisinent l'Italie. Il est aussi évident que des réminiscences du paganisme se sont jointes aux terribles détails du martyre de Ste Macre, Mager ou Maigre, dont on célèbre la fête, en Champagne, le jour de l'Epiphanie.

  

D'après la tradition, cette sainte endura le martyre du temps de la grande persécution des Chrétiens, sous Dioclétien. Elle fut jetée au feu, et, n'en ayant reçu aucun dommage, on lui coupa les mamelles, on la roula sur des morceaux très aigus de pots cassés et ensuite sur des charbons enflammés; enfin, Dieu l'enleva à la cruauté des hommes! Tel est le résumé des rimes populaires que chantent parfois encore les enfants qui, le jour des Rois, parcourent, en Champagne, les villages avec un mannequin figurant une femme et qu'ils disent être l'effigie de Ste. Maigre! Nous voyons, dans cette sainte, une christianisation d'un usage païen qui ne pouvait se maintenir, après la chute du paganisme, que sous une forme nouvelle.

  

St Mélanie, évêque et confesseur, est pour Rennes, ce que Ste Macre ou Maigre est devenue pour Reims et la Champagne. Les miracles que la voix populaire lui attribue sont innombrables. Comme St. Macaire, il avait, dit-on, le pouvoir de faire parler les morts.

  

Les habitants des montagnes du Monta-Rosa prétendent qu'un mirage céleste fait quelquefois apercevoir, le jour de l'Epiphanie, la «vallées perdue», dont les souvenirs délicieux vivent dans la tradition de leur contrée alpine. Effectivement, qu'est cette vallée perdue, sinon un pays d'espérance, et la fête du treizième jour n'était-elle pas aussi principalement consacrée à l'Espoir?

 

Nous cherchons tous et toujours la vallée perdue, mais quel est l'heureux mortel qui la retrouve?

 

En Flandre comme en plusieurs parties de l'Allemagne, on nomme le jour des Rois: le Grand Nouvel An, et les Tyroliens attribuent à l'eau bénite de ce jour des forces particulières. Ils en aspergent les champs, les étables, les granges, etc. C'est aussi une croyance populaire à peu près générale que les mariages contractés le jour de la Sainte-Lumière sont heureux par excellence. En Brabant et en Flandre, les enfants chantent la veille et le jour des Rois différentes rimes qui paraissent très anciennes et qui ont trait, soit à la Sainte-Lumière soit à la demande d'un nouveau couvre-chef, le vieux s'étant sans doute usé, pendant le cours de l'année antérieure.

 

 

Dr. COREMANS.

 

(ex Etudes sur les mythes,  tome I, Les fêtes du Joul,  Héliopolis, 1851).

 

Note sur l'auteur: le Dr. Coremans, né à Bruxelles à la fin du XVIIIième siècle a dû quitter sa ville natale, en compagnie de son père, haut fonctionnaire impérial, à l'arrivée de la soldatesque jacobine dans les Pays-Bas autrichiens (1792). Elevé à Vienne, il y entre à la faculté de droit et s'engage dans les Burschenschaften  nationalistes et grandes-allemandes, qui s'opposent au morcellement du monde germanique, confirmé par le Traité de Vienne de 1815. Revenu à Bruxelles, parfaitement trilingue, il reste un légitimiste absolu: sa fidélité politique va à l'Autriche, au cadre germanique et centre-européen plutôt qu'à la dynastie des Habsbourg qui ne veut rien comprendre aux aspirations du peuple à l'unité. Païen dans l'âme, il rédigera une quantité d'études sur les mythes et les traditions populaires; dans bien des domaines de l'ethnologie, il sera un pionnier, mais, depuis, il a été bien oublié.

 

samedi, 14 septembre 2013

Monothéismes et paganismes

TP-56-420x600.jpg

Monothéismes et paganismes

Le numéro 56 de TERRE & PEUPLE Magazine est presque tout entier consacré aux monothéismes et aux paganismes.

Pierre Vial consacre son éditorial à un pieux hommage qu’il rend à ‘l’âme altière’ de Dominique Venner, derrière qui il a lui-même marché depuis ses quinze ans, car il n’a jamais suivi d’autre chef que lui. Il nous engage ‘à nous orienter sur cette ‘étoile polaire’. Il cite Bruno de Cessole, pour qui le dernier geste de Dominique Venner n’a rien du désespoir. C’est au contraire un sacrifice accompli pour réveiller nos consciences.

 Pierre Vial ouvre ensuite le dossier ‘Monothéismes et paganismes’ pour souligner que l’islam se trouve dans un rapport de filiation avec les deux autres monothéismes et qu’un gouffre sépare ces trois religions du désert des religions de la forêt. Il se réfère aux archéologues israéliens Finkelstein et Silbermann, pour qui la saga biblique n’est qu’un produit de l’imagination, conçu sous la dynastie davidique, et à Jean Soler, qui a démontré que les épisodes d’Abraham et de Moïse ne peuvent plus être considérés comme historiques. Les dominations étrangères, assyrienne et perse, et les déportations des Hébreux ont alors été interprétées comme une punition pour leur tolérance à l’égard de dieux étrangers, ce qui doit les faire passer à la monolâtrie (pour un Dieu national), qui se muera bientôt dans une alliance privilégiée avec le Dieu unique et universel et justifiera une réécriture de la Bible à la fin du IVe siècle seulement.

Pour les Indo-Européens, Jean Haudry souligne que leur polythéisme s’est accommodé d’accumuler la tradition, sans jamais en retrancher ni craindre les contradictions et les paradoxes. Avec les temps historiques, les dieux, frères des hommes, ont tendance à s’en éloigner, peut-être suite au feu qui leur a été volé par Prométhée, et suite aux comportements inamicaux des héros, ‘contempteurs des dieux’. En Grèce, l’athéisme va apparaître avec l’atomisme matérialiste et l’épicurisme. Chez les Iraniens, le mazdéisme, avec son dieu suprême Ahura Mazda (Seigneur Sagesse), est une tentative avortée de monothéisme. Dans l’hindouisme, la recherche de l’unité fait évoluer le polythéisme en panthéisme. Toutefois, Brahma et Civa forment avec Vishnu le Trimurti ou Trinité, mais les trois composantes de la triade (avec les trois couleurs, blanche, rouge, noire qui leur sont associées) leur sont préexistantes.

Traitant la distinction entre monothéisme et polythéisme, Robert Dragan remarque que la Bible désigne paradoxalement le Dieu unique par le pluriel Eloïm, alors que Aristote (sur qui saint Thomas d’Aquin appuiera largement sa Somme théologique) pose les preuves d’un Dieu créateur qui est de nature différente des autres dieux, qui ne sont que représentation du monde, donc des créations des hommes. La clé métaphysique des païens n’est pas la révélation dogmatique, mais la contemplation muette qu’on n’atteint par recherche par ascèse, notamment celle des mystiques chrétiens.

Claude Perrin rappelle que les juifs sont passés du polythéisme à la monolâtrie d’un Dieu réservé au seul peuple juif. Les chrétiens en feront le Dieu de tous les peuples, notamment tous les peuples conquis par l’Empire romain, ce qui ne pouvait que séduire l’Empereur Constantin. Tard venu, le monothéisme a fait d’innombrables emprunts au polythéisme. Rare substitut qui subsiste aux dieux anciens : le Père Noël.

Claude Valsardieu dresse une fiche ‘théométrique’ extraordinairement fouillée d’Apollon, divinité solaire de la conscience éclairée, qui surclasse l’intelligence mercurienne, de l’esprit prophétique, qui transcende la raison logique, de l’harmonie supérieure, de la beauté radieuse, de l’espérance. Dieux guérisseur pourfendeur du Python, il dirige ses flèches contre la maladie. D’origine hyperboréenne, ses premières représentations sont égyptiennes.

Pierre Vial esquisse les traits les plus marquants de notre néo-paganisme : le ré-enchantement d’un monde qui a été diabolisé, méprisé et honteusement maltraité. Notre paganisme est une réalité charnelle et vécue, c’est le rejet de l’intolérance des religions fanatiques, c’est la revendication de la dignité des hommes libres et responsables d’eux-mêmes. C’est un paganisme de méditation, de sagesse, de combat, de fécondité, d’enracinement, de sublimation par le culte du sacré, un paganisme de fidélité, à la tradition de nos anciens, à notre sang et à notre terre.

Alain Cagnat retrace la voie qui a mené du monothéisme à l’universalisme mondialiste. On attribue à Aménophis IV Akhenaton,  pharaon de la XVIIIe dynastie (XIIIe AC) la paternité d’un monothéisme qui a été sans lendemain. Moïse ne remonterait qu’au VIIIe siècle AC, mais le monothéisme juif serait en fait beaucoup plus récent. Yahveh, dieu unique n’est au départ qu’un dieu national qui ne tolère pas le culte d’autres divinités par les juifs. C’est la condition contractuelle de leur suprématie, voire de leur surhumanité. Le christianisme est le même monothéisme étendu par saint Paul à tous les peuples du monde. Adopté par Constantin, le monothéisme chrétien est imposé à tous les peuples de l’Empire romain. Cette adoption lui assure un triomphe sur ces peuples jusqu’à la fracture interne de la réforme des protestants et la contestation. Celle des humanistes d’abord et ensuite celle des Lumières d’un esprit sanctifié par une influence maçonnique évidente, qui édifie un nouvel universalisme, avec une nouvelle métaphysique du progrès illimité, poursuivi dans le cadre d’un Contrat social régi par des Droits de l’Homme, révélés eux aussi par le même esprit saint laïc. Les Droits de l’Homme sont le credo insurpassable de la tolérance, lequel prescrit l’intolérance contre les ennemis de la liberté obligatoire. Comme il prescrit le droit et bientôt le devoir d’ingérence pour sanctionner les dissidents. Engendré par le libéralisme, l’individu doit pouvoir se libérer de tout lien qui l’attache à un groupe, fût-ce sa famille et rien ne peut entraver son activité économique sur un marché de libre concurrence. En soignant son propre bien, il fait le bien de tous, de toute l’humanité car le marché de doit pas connaître de frontières, surtout pas nationales, car il y a une équation entre nation et shoah. Il ne peut y avoir d’autre règle que l’auto-régulation du marché par l’équilibre de l’offre et de la demande. Elle s’impose aussi bien au travail qu’aux marchandises et services et le chômage exerce sur le prix du travail une pression bénéfique pour le prix des produits, qu’elle s’exerce par la concurrence des travailleurs des pays à bas salaires ou des travailleurs immigrés, dessinant avec les délocalisations le spectre d’un nouvel esclavagisme. Le mondialisme a connu un grand essor avec l’effondrement de l’URSS et la disparition du monde bipolaire et avec l’intégration des pays BRIC (Brésil/Russie/Inde/Chine) dans le grand marché sans nations. Celui-ci favorise la consolidation de quelques dizaines de multinationales, Certaines de ces ‘majors’, avec les banques qui leur sont associées par participations croisées, sont plus puissantes qu’un état comme la France et nombre de dirigeants politiques démocratiques sont issus de leur sérail (Goldman Sachs). Cette maffia a eu l’habileté d’inciter les états à s’endetter, non plus auprès de leurs administrés, mais auprès du capitalisme apatride. Marx, qui dénonçait cette dictature de la troisième fonction promettait de la renverser par la dictature du prolétariat, non moins matérialiste ni non moins mondialiste. L’Eglise catholique, mondialiste par définition même, avait vu ses prêtres ouvriers attirés par le marxisme, se syndiquer à la CGT, voire adhérer au parti. Dans les colonies, les missionnaires ont alors ressuscité la Controverse de Valladolid (sur la légitimité de la colonisation), et se sont plus préoccupés du bien temporel des indigènes que de leur bien spirituel. Pie XII intimera aux missionnaires l’ordre de ne plus occidentaliser les indigènes, mais de respecter leur identité et de promouvoir leur indépendance. Nombre de chrétiens soutiendront activement le Vietminh et les égorgeurs du FLN. La théologie de la libération fait la synthèse du marxisme et du message chrétien.  C’est la cardinal Ratzinger, futur Benoît XVI, qui condamnera la trop grande implication du clergé dans la révolution politique. Délaissant le marxisme moribond, les tenants de la théologie de la libération vont s’engager dans les combats modernes de l’altermondialisme et de l’antiracisme, lequel va notamment obtenir que le mot ‘race’ soit supprimé » de tous les textes officiels français. Toute recherche d’identité est condamnée comme discriminatoire. Jusque là, on reconnaissait communément les races bibliques issues des trois fils de Noé, avec une multitude de subdivisions. Le mythe de l’ancêtre commun né en Afrique, rapidement invalidé par les découvertes scientifiques, n’est plus reçu que par les Noirs. L’antiracisme s’est rapidement étendu à toute discrimination, physique, sexuelle, religieuse. Le mixage que poursuit le multiculturalisme est une machine à tuer les peuples. Il ne débouche pas du tout sur un mélange généralisé des races, mais sur le communautarisme ou repli de chaque groupe dans des ghettos, avec une sérieuse perspective de guerre interethnique. La fin du cycle est proche.

Sous le titre ‘Gouverner par le chaos’, Thibault, membre de la rédaction du scriptoblog, répond à la question que posait, en 1929 déjà, le Dr Edward Bernays, l’auteur de ‘Propaganda, comment manipuler l’opinion en démocratie’ : « Ne pourrait-on pas mobiliser les masses sans qu’elles s’en rendent compte ? ». Neveu de Freud, Bernays est avec Walter Lippmann, un des fondateurs de l’ingénierie sociale, technique scientifique qui prétend par le contrôle de toutes les sphères du vivant pouvoir écraser toute déviance à la pensée correcte. Notamment par l’association d’idées (le chien de Pavlov qui salivait au seul tintement de la sonnette qui accompagnait tous ses repas ou la diabolisation des contestataires d’aujourd’hui par leur reductio ad hitlerum). L’institut Tavistock, financé par Rockefeller, a théorisé ces méthodes dites de contre-insurrection. Le projet exprimé est de mettre en place « un fascisme à visage démocratique », en affaiblissant notre moral, par des crises suscitées, des désordres entretenus, un management négatif, l’immigration de remplacement et le communautarisme, la discrimination positive de minorités ethniques, religieuses, sexuelles, la déstabilisation par l’affolement dans la submersion dans une surabondance d’information, le neuro-marketing. Les ingénieurs sociaux analysent et mesurent les réactions chimiques aux stimuli qu’ils administrent à leurs cobayes humains, rythmes, couleurs, poses, gestuelle. Un des objectifs à terme de cette guerre cognitive serait la cybernétisation de l’humanité.      

 

lundi, 01 juillet 2013

Entretien avec Gilbert Sincyr

boug.jpg

« Le Paganisme est une Vue du monde

 

basée sur un sens du sacré, qui rejette le fatalisme.

 

Il est fondé sur le sens de l’honneur

 

et de la responsabilité de l’Homme,

 

face aux évènements de la vie »

 

Entretien avec Gilbert Sincyr, auteur du livre Le Paganisme. Recours spirituel et identitaire de l’Europe

Propos recueillis par Fabrice Dutilleul

 

Votre livre Le Paganisme. Recours spirituel et identitaire de l’Europe est un succès. Pourtant ce thème peut paraître quelque peu « décalé » à notre époque.

Bien au contraire : si les églises se vident, ce n’est pas parce que l’homme a perdu le sens du sacré, c’est parce que l’Européen se sent mal à l’aise vis-à-vis d’une religion qui ne répond pas à sa sensibilité. L’Européen est un être qui aspire à la liberté et à la responsabilité. Or, lui répéter que son destin dépend du bon vouloir d’un Dieu étranger, que dès sa naissance il est marqué par le péché, et qu’il devra passer sa vie à demander le pardon de ses soi-disant fautes, n’est pas ce que l’on peut appeler être un adulte maître de son destin. Plus les populations sont évoluées, plus on constate leur rejet de l’approche monothéiste avec un Dieu responsable de tout ce qui est bon, mais jamais du mal ou de la souffrance, et devant qui il convient de se prosterner. Maintenant que l’Église n’a plus son pouvoir dominateur sur le peuple, on constate une évolution vers une aspiration à la liberté de l’esprit. C’est un chemin à rebours de la condamnation évangélique, originelle et perpétuelle.

Alors, qu’est-ce que le Paganisme ?

C'est d’abord un qualificatif choisi par l’Église pour désigner d’un mot l’ensemble des religions européennes, puisqu’à l’évidence elles reposaient sur des valeurs communes. C’est donc le terme qui englobe l’héritage spirituel et culturel des Indo-européens. Le Paganisme est une Vue du monde basée sur un sens du sacré, qui rejette le fatalisme. Il est fondé sur le sens de l’honneur et de la responsabilité de l’Homme, face aux évènements de la vie. Ce mental de combat s’est élaboré depuis le néolithique au fil de milliers d’années nous donnant une façon de penser, une attitude face au monde. Il est à l’opposé de l’assujettissement traditionnel moyen-oriental devant une force extérieure, la volonté divine, qui contrôle le destin de chacun. Ainsi donc, le Paganisme contient et exprime l’identité que se sont forgés les Européens, du néolithique à la révolution chrétienne.

Vous voulez donc remplacer un Dieu par plusieurs ?

Pas du tout. Les temps ne sont plus à l’adoration. Les Hommes ont acquit des connaissances qui les éloignent des peurs ancestrales. Personne n’a encore apporté la preuve incontestable qu’il existe, ou qu’il n’existe pas, une force « spirituelle » universelle. Des hommes à l’intelligence exceptionnelle, continuent à s’affronter sur ce sujet, et je crois que personne ne mettrait sa tête à couper, pour l’un ou l’autre de ces choix. Ce n’est donc pas ainsi que nous posons le problème.

Le Paganisme, qui est l’expression européenne d’une vue unitaire du monde, à l’opposé de la conception dualiste des monothéismes, est la réponse spécifique d’autres peuples aux mêmes questionnements. D’où les différences entre civilisations.

Quand il y a invasion et submersion d’une civilisation par une autre, on appelle cela une colonisation. C’est ce qui s’est passé en Europe, contrainte souvent par la terreur, à changer de religion (souvenons-nous de la chasse aux idoles et aux sorcières, des destructions des temples anciens, des tortures et bûchers, tout cela bien sûr au nom de l’amour). Quand il y a rejet de cette colonisation, dans un but de recherche identitaire, on appelle cela une libération, ou une « Reconquista », comme on l’a dit de l’Espagne lors du reflux des Arabes. Et nous en sommes là, sauf qu’il ne s’agit pas de reflux, mais d’abandon de valeurs étrangères au profit d’un retour de notre identité spirituelle.

Convertis par la force, les Européens se libèrent. « Chassez le naturel et il revient au galop », dit-on, et voilà que notre identité refoulée nous revient à nouveau. Non pas par un retour des anciens Dieux, forme d’expression d’une époque lointaine, mais comme un recours aux valeurs de liberté et de responsabilité qui étaient les nôtres, et que le Paganisme contient et exprime.

Débarrassés des miasmes du monothéisme totalitaire, les Européens retrouvent leur contact privilégié avec la nature. On reparle d’altérité plutôt que d’égalité, d’honneur plutôt que d’humilité, de responsabilité, de volonté, de défi, de diversité, d’identité, enfin de ce qui constitue notre héritage culturel, pourchassé, rejeté et condamné depuis deux mille ans.

S’agit-il alors d’une nouvelle guerre de religion ?

Pas du tout, évidemment. Les Européens doivent dépasser ce qui leur a été imposé et qui leur est étranger. Nous devons réunifier sacré et profane, c’est-à-dire réaffirmer que l’homme est un tout, que, de ce fait, il est le maître de son destin car il n’y a pas dichotomie entre corps et esprit. Les Européens ne doivent plus s’agenouiller pour implorer le pardon de fautes définies par une idéologie dictatoriale moyen-orientale. Ce n’est pas vers un retour du passé qu’il nous faut nous tourner, gardons-nous surtout d’une attitude passéiste, elle ne serait que folklore et compromission. Au contraire des religions monothéistes, sclérosées dans leurs livres intouchables, le Paganisme, comme une source jaillissante, doit se trouver de nouveaux chemins, de nouvelles expressions. À l’inverse des religions du livre, bloquées, incapables d’évoluer, dépassées et vieillissantes, le Paganisme est l’expression de la liberté de l’homme européen, dans son environnement naturel qu’il respecte. C’est une source de vie qui jaillit de nouveau en Europe, affirmant notre identité, et notre sens du sacré, pour un avenir de fierté, de liberté et de volonté, dans la modernité.

Le Paganisme. Recours spirituel et identitaire de l’Europede Gilbert Sincyr, éditions de L’Æncre, collection « Patrimoine des Religions », dirigée par Philippe Randa, 232 pages, 25 euros.

BON DE COMMANDE

Je souhaite commander :

… ex deLe paganisme (25 euros)
Francephi diffusion - Boite 37 - 16 bis rue d’Odessa - 75014 Paris - Tél. 09 52 95 13 34 - Fax. 09 57 95 13 34 – Mél. diffusion@francephi.com

Commande par internet (paiement 100 % sécurisé par paypal ou carte bancaire) sur notre site www.francephi.com.

mardi, 23 avril 2013

Gilbert Sincyr au Local

Gilbert Sincyr au Local :

25-AVRIL-2013.jpg

18:15 Publié dans Evénement | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) | Tags : gilbert sincyr, événement, paris, france, paganisme, traditions | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook

mardi, 26 mars 2013

Het doorleven van heidense gebruiken in de middeleeuwse volkscultuur

 Sanctus_Malherbus__2869.jpg

Filip MARTENS:

 

Het doorleven van heidense gebruiken in de middeleeuwse volkscultuur

 

 

De Latijnse Kerk werd in de Middeleeuwen geconfronteerd met vele populaire heiligentradities en verschillende inzichten in de religie zelf. Om dit onder controle te brengen, vervaardigde de Kerk boeteboeken voor haar priesters. De context van deze boeteboeken is die van de parochie. De taak van de pastoor was het dirigeren van het religieuze leven der gelovigen, maar zonder de biecht en de boeteboeken zou dit moeilijk geweest zijn.

 

Binnen de parochie brachten de meeste middeleeuwers hun ganse leven door: ze werden er gedoopt, gingen er naar de mis, trouwden en overleden er. Doch deze lokale molecule van de Kerk was veel meer dan een religieus centrum: er vonden ook feesten plaats, er werden inkopen gedaan, het graan werd er opgeslagen en de plaatselijke kerk – vaak het enige stenen gebouw in het dorp – was veelal het laatste toevluchtsoord tegen bandieten en roversbendes. Alle dorpelingen waren tevens aan elkaars sociale controle onderworpen. Veel mensen verlieten zelfs de parochie om te biechten en zo te ontsnappen aan de supervisie van de pastoor. Het behoren tot een bepaalde parochie had ook diepe spirituele wortels. Het was de plaats waar zowel de voorvaderen begraven lagen als de parochianen zelf begraven zouden worden.

 

In de Germaanse culturen was schaamte belangrijker dan schuld. De Germaanse held bekeek zichzelf door de ogen van het collectief: zijn daden – niet zijn doelstellingen – werden beoordeeld door de gemeenschap. De zelfevaluatie van een persoon was dus afhankelijk van het oordeel vande samenleving.De Germaanse ethiek van eer en glorie leefde door in het christendom: het duidelijkste is uiteraard de riddereer. En de sociale controle van de parochianen over elkaar komt duidelijk overeen met de saga's waarin de held zichzelf ziet door de ogen van het collectief.

 

Boeteboeken werden geschreven in parochies die recent gekerstend waren. Maar het is moeilijk in te schatten in welke mate het christendom erin slaagde pre-christelijke tradities te vervangen en geestelijke controle te krijgen over de bekeerlingen. Toch geven deze boeteboeken ons een inzicht in de dagelijkse taak om het geloof te bewaren: ze bevatten namelijk veel informatie over de heidense tradities van de Europese bevolking en over het innerlijke gedachtegoed van de middeleeuwse mens. Er zijn bovendien weinig anderebetrouwbare bronnen beschikbaar. De boeteboeken hielpen de pastoor bij het geleidelijk wegwassen van de heidense tradities. Het doel was dat parochianen in staat zouden zijn om hun eigen daden te analyseren volgens de christelijke dogma’s en berouw zouden tonen voor het begaan van eventuele zonden.

 

Onderzoekers van de vroegmiddeleeuwse cultuur zoeken vaak tevergeefs naar heidense Germaanse of Grieks-Romeinse overblijfselen. De tradities die in kerkelijke geschriften zijn neergeschreven, weerspiegelen namelijk een diepere, primaire laag van het volksbewustzijn en verwijzen niet expliciet naar een Germaans of Grieks-Romeins verleden. De boeteboeken bevatten veel informatie over verschillende magische praktijken uit een pre-christelijk verleden. Vooral voor de boeren waren dergelijke gebruiken zeer belangrijk: ze geloofden dat zon, sterren en maan de mens beïnvloedden én dat de mens ook de gunsten van deze fenomenen kon afroepen via rituelen. De achterliggende redenering hierbij was dat mens en wereld uit dezelfde elementen waren opgebouwd en de mens bijgevolg ook de wereld kon beïnvloeden.

 

Eén van de best geïnformeerde schrijvers van boeteboeken was bisschop Burchard van Worms (ca. 950-1025). In zijn boeteboek ‘Corrector sive medicus’ weeshij de heidense rituelen van de gewone man af, omdat die haaks stonden op het geloof in de goddelijke voorzienigheid die de wereld in handen had. ‘Correctorsive medicus’ is tevens een ware schatkamer voor het bestuderen van het volksgeloof. Burchardbeschreef vele rituele vieringen om een goede oogst of weersveranderingen af te smeken. Bij herders bestonden nog oude magische rituelen om niet alleen overvloed voor de eigen kudde, maar ook rampspoed over de kudde van een andere herder af te roepen. Vele gebruiken waren echter ook van toepassing op de mens zelf.

 

Burchard van Worms beschreef verder nog criminele vrouwen die de duivel dienden en zo het volk afleidden van het ware geloof. Wie hierdoor verleid werd, moest 2 jaar boetedoening doen. Dit soort vrouwen kwam voort uit een oude traditie van schikgodinnen. Burchard stelde voorts dat mensen die geloof hechtten in weerwolven, geloofden in iets dat niet kon gebeuren: de menselijke gedaante kon namelijk niet veranderd worden, behalve door God zelf. De mens is immers gemaakt naar het evenbeeld van God. Als straf hiervoor diende men 10 dagen te vasten. Er waren ook heel wat mensen misleid door kwade geesten, die deze overtuigingen in leven hielden en overleverden van generatie op generatie.

 

De heidense gebruiken van de parochianen behoorden tot de tradities, het volksgeloof en het volksbewustzijn. De middeleeuwse mens was immers sterk afhankelijk van de natuur inzake landbouw. Magie hielp hem daarbij om de natuur te begrijpen en te proberen beheersen. Volkse ‘geneeskunde’ en hekserij waren dan ook sterk aanwezig in de middeleeuwse maatschappij, terwijl vele bronnen tevens getuigen van de combinatie van kruidenkunde met het geloof in de invloed van hemellichamen op de gezondheid. De Kerk verbood het gebruik van geneeskrachtige kruiden, tenzij dit in combinatie met het bidden van de rozenkrans gebeurde. Het gebruik van kruiden met magische rituelen werd uiteraard wel verboden. Hekserij was een fenomeen dat zich in gans Europa voordeed, maar vooral uit de sprookjesachtige wereld van het middeleeuwse Duitsland zijn er vele verhalen bekend die zowel elementen uit de Germaanse als uit de Grieks-Romeinse cultuur bevatten.

 

Hildegard von Bingen (1098-1179) begaf zich op het terrein der geneeskunde. Zij was uit een adellijk geslacht afkomstig en ging op 8-jarige leeftijd naar het benedictijnenklooster in Disibodenberg. In 1136 werd ze abdis van dit klooster en in 1150 stichtte ze een nieuw klooster op de Rupertsberg in Bingen. Hildegard onderhield briefwisseling met onder meer keizer FrederikBarbarossa en koning Hendrik II van Engeland. Ze inspireerde mystici van latere generaties uit de Nederlanden en het Rijnland. Hildegard was een predikster en raadgeefster, maar berispte ook indien nodig. Tevens schreef ze liturgische liederen en medische traktaten.

 

De methodes die Hildegard von Bingen aanraadde om zieken te genezen en om bezetenen te verlossen, lijken echter sterk magisch. Priesters volgden haargeneeskundige raad op, waaruit afgeleid kan worden dat de clerushaar werkwijzen nog niet zo gek vond. Hildegard baseerde zich niet enkel op de gekende magische technieken, maar introduceerde in geneeskundige traktaten tevens nieuwe magische elementen. Desondanks bleef Hildegard toch in de gunst van de Kerk door haar imago van zwakheid, eerlijkheid en eenvoudige scholing (hoewel ze een leeftijd van 81 jaar bereikte, van adellijke afkomst was en een goede opleiding genoten had).

 

De structuur van het volksbewustzijn overleefde en reproduceerdeconstant archaïsche kenmerken, zelfs binnen het christendom en ondanks de inspanningen van de Kerk om de heidense overleveringen uit te wissen. Bijvoorbeeldmet het doorboren van het lichaam van een pasgeboren kind dat stierf vóór het gedoopt werd, wilden vrouwen vermijden dat hun overleden kind uit de dood zou opstaan en kwaad aanrichten. Indien het kind stierf na het doopsel, werd het soms begraven met een hostie en wijn (een duidelijke verwijzing naar Christus), wat echter door de Kerk verboden werd.

 

Magische praktijken rond de dood gebeurden in de vorm van offerandes, wakes, heidense begrafenisrituelen en begrafenisfeesten. Dit werd ten stelligste verboden door de boeteboeken, evenals andere traditionele rouwrituelen zoals het verbranden van het haar, het verwonden van het gezicht en het verscheuren van de kledij van de dode.

 

Ook het voorspellen van de toekomst was in de Middeleeuwen een veel voorkomend verschijnsel, zoals het lezen van de vlucht van vogels, het gooien van graankorrels op een hete vuurplaat en het zoeken naar levende dingen onder een steen op weg naar het huis van een zieke (indien iets gevonden werd, zou de zieke genezen). De kant waaruit kraaien kraaiden, voorspelde het succes van een reis, terwijl sommigen wachtten met het verlaten van het huis tot de haan kraaide. Middeleeuwers verwachtten uit elke hoek gevaar en wilden dit via rituelen bezweren.

 

Vele rituelen staan vermeld in meerdere boeteboeken, maar het precieze doel van de rituelen werd slechts vaag omschreven. In de volkscultuur kon een ritueel immers zowel zwarte als witte magie dienen. Door de grote verscheidenheid van de vele rituelen kunnen die niet louter heidens genoemd worden. De boeteboeken verwijzen slechts zelden naar heidense goden of rituelen. De meeste parochianen waren vrome christenen, maar koesterden daarnaast nog magische gebruiken. Het middeleeuwse christendom kwam duidelijk niet volledig overeen met de leer van de clerus. Het was dus wel mogelijk om de oude goden en godsdienstige structuren te vernietigen, maar niet om traditionele levens- en denkwijzen aan te passen. Bovendien vormden christendom en magie voor de middeleeuwer geen gescheiden maar wel samenhangende werelden. Daardoor bestond een grote interactie tussen de oude magie en het nieuwe christendom:belangrijke zaken werden verwerkt in het nieuwe geloof.

 

Bovendien waren er ook magisch aandoende elementen in het christendom: de gewone gelovige dichtte bijvoorbeeld de geïdealiseerde heiligenlegendenmagische eigenschappen toe.Veel priesters, vaak zelf afkomstig uit een boerengezin, zagen de volkscultuur door de vingers en waren onwetend over de christelijke theologie. Bovendien gebruikte de Kerk zelf magische rituelen zoals het inwijden van velden, gereedschappen, voedsel enz. Het was dus moeilijk voor de gewone man om te begrijpen waarom zijn eigen magische rituelen, die in vele gevallen net hetzelfde doel hadden, verboden werden.

 

Toch zijn er zaken die we quasi zeker kunnen bestempelen als heidens. Tot in de 11de eeuw werden in Duitsland cultusfeesten georganiseerd waarbij de deelnemers bloed dronken of gebruikten als plengoffer, hoewel dit door de Kerk ten strengste verboden was. Het strikte christelijke dieet was duidelijk in strijd met de volkstradities dat eten rein en onrein kon zijn.

 

De boeteboeken sommen verder ook een hele reeks zonden op: dronkenschap, vraatzucht, braken, eten op ongepaste uren, … Ook dit was confronterend voor de bevolking. Noordse sagen spreken bijvoorbeeld over gevallen van collectieve dronkenschap. De ‘barbaren’ kenden geen matiging inzake eten en drinken. In het feodale tijdperk was feesten een zaak van de krijgersklasse. Toch bleef het iets dat de Kerk onmogelijk kon inperken en er zijn zelfs tal van voorbeelden bekend van priesters, abten en bisschoppen die zelf diep in het glas keken.

 

De kerkelijke wetgeving beperkte het huwelijk tot de 5de graad van bloedverwantschap. Geslachtsgemeenschap werd gezien als een opdracht van God aan de mens om zich te voort te planten en moest in overeenstemming met de christelijke moraal gebeuren. Zeer zware straffen werden opgelegd aan pedofielen, verkrachters, verleiders, overspeligen enz. Omdat geslachtsgemeenschap de mens wegtrekt bij God, werd het strikt gereglementeerd.

 

Vanwege het aanzetten tot zonde door Eva in de Tuin van Eden werd de vrouw als de incarnatie van de verleiding beschouwd.In het vroegmiddeleeuwse christendom is er een scheiding tussen lichaam en ziel. In theologisch-wetenschappelijke en volkse tradities werd de vrouw gelijkgeschakeld met het lichaam, lust, zwakheid en irrationaliteit. Mannen werden gelijkgeschakeld met de geest, rede en kracht. Belangrijk is dat het hier gaat om wijdverspreide culturele opvattingen: middeleeuwse theologen oordeelden dat het lichaam zich verhield tot de geest zoals de vrouw tot de man. Ook voor Hildegard von Bingen stond de getrouwde vrouw onder de macht van haar man zoals een dienaar onder de macht van de meester stond. Vanaf de 13de-14de eeuw hechtten theologen meer belang aan de relatie tussen lichaam en ziel en brachten ze beide componenten meer samen.

 

De uitgebreide opsomming van zonden in boeteboeken biedt een inzicht in de volkscultuur van de Middeleeuwen. Ieder aspect van die volkscultuur werd onderverdeeld in categorieën van zonden. We mogen aannemen dat veel zaken waarover de auteurs der boeteboeken bezorgd waren, echt voorkwamen. De volksmagie was een wereldverklarend systeem. Vele magische zaken kunnen in verband gebracht wordenmet folklore en sprookjes, maar vertellers van zulke verhalen werden meestal niet vervolgd. Het was een soort van onderaardse wereld in het dagelijkse leven van de middeleeuwer, die een bedreiging vormde voor de Kerk. Volksverhalen en folklore zijn een kunstige kopie die de realiteit verbloemt en zich afspeelt in een surreële afstand en tijd. Volksmagie wasdaarentegen een manier om de realiteit meester te worden en sociaal gedrag te bepalen.

 

Het belangrijkste verschil tussen magie en religie is dat religie de wereld humaniseert door de wereld en haar krachten een antropomorf karakter te verlenen en de goddelijkheid te personifiëren. Magie is daarentegen eerder een naturalisatie van de mens die hem een plaats geeft in de kosmos. In de pre-christelijke magische wereld maakte de mens deel uit van de natuur en werd er niet tegenover geplaatst zoals in het christendom. De mens voelde zich ingebed in de kosmos en volgde haar eeuwige ritme. In deze manier van denken waren magische rituelen geen toevoegingen aan de natuurlijke oorzakelijkheid, maar integrale delen van de manier waarop de wereld bewoog. Hierdoor werden het natuurlijke en bovennatuurlijke onverbreekbaar verbonden. De boeteboeken verwierpen echter quasi alles dat refereerde naar deze verbinding tussen mens en natuur. De mens voelde zichzelf nog altijd een deel van de natuur, maar vervreemdde ervan. De pre-christelijke magische gebruiken bleven dus voortbestaan in een nieuwe mentale context. De magiërs ontdekten de beperkingen ervan, maar het was voor hen te belangrijk om het zomaar los te laten. Doch tegelijkertijd waren zij zich ook bewust dat wat zij deden, eigenlijk zondig was.

 

De auteurs der boeteboeken waren bezorgd over de relatie tussen parochianen en natuur en wilden niet dat dit conflicteerde met de relatie tussen mens en God.De quasi oneindige opsomming van zonden en de abstracties van de christelijke theologie waren evenwel moeilijk te begrijpen, vooral voor de middeleeuwse boeren. Een boer volgt namelijk de cyclus van de natuur, alles herhaalt zich en is volgens hem een eeuwige cyclus. Ieder jaar is er een nieuwe geboorte en een nieuwe dood. Voor hem betekende de dood echter ook een vorm van wedergeboorte. Vandaar dat in de heidense religie een begrafenis met een feest werd afgesloten. Deze traditie zette zich tot het ongenoegen van de clerus ook in de Middeleeuwen voort. Vandaar dat in de magische rituelen vaak sprake is van toekomstvoorspellingen: wat ooit geweest is, kan opnieuw gebeuren en ipso facto is voorspellen mogelijk.

 

De christelijke tijdsbepaling is daarentegen uitsluitend lineair en historisch. De wereld ondergaat in de loop der tijd veranderingen en die kunnen niet meer ongedaan gemaakt worden. Dit had een grote impact op de gewone middeleeuwer. In het christelijke wereldbeeld ontwikkelde mendus een besef van zijn eigen deelname aan de goddelijke geschiedenis naar het ultieme einde: de Dag des Oordeels. Samen met de angst voor bestraffing der zonden leiddedit tot de geleidelijke aanvaarding van het idee van ‘geschiedenis’.

 

Conclusie

 

Het is duidelijk dat er in de Middeleeuwen niet iets bestond als het pure christendom. Sommige heidense en magische elementen bleven doorleven op voorwaarde dat ze niet in tegenspraak waren met de christelijke dogma’s, de canonieke wetten en de sociale orde. Magie en bijgeloof hoorden tot op zekere hoogte bij de middeleeuwse cultuur. Men mag ook niet vergeten dat de middeleeuwse cultuur zelf was opgebouwd uit verschillende invloeden. Het was dus zeker niet onmogelijk dat zelfs gerespecteerde clerici zich soms inlieten met magie.

 

De interactie tussen een archaïsche tijdloze wereld en de lineaire perceptie van tijdleidde tot het ontstaan van een parochiaal christendom: een volkse interpretatie van het officiële geloof dievoldeed aan de spirituele noden van ongeletterde parochianen.

 

 

Referenties

 

AUSTIN (G.), Shaping Church Law around the Year 1000: the Decretum of Burchard of Worms, Burlington, Ashgate, 2009, pp. XII + 344.

BILLER (P.) en MINNIS (A.), Handling Sin: Confession in the Middle Ages, York, York Medieval Press, 1998, pp. X + 219.

CHARON (V.), DE REU (M.), MILIS (L.) e.a., De Heidense Middeleeuwen, Turnhout, Brepols, 1992, pp. 184.

DEPLOIGE (J.), In nominefemineoindocta: kennisprofiel en ideologie van Hildegard van Bingen (1098-1179), Hilversum, Verloren, 1998, pp. 224.

GUREVICH (A.), Medieval Popular Culture: Problems of Belief and Perception, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1988, pp. XX + 275.

JONES (P.) en PENNICK (N.), A History of Pagan Europe, London-New York, Routledge, 1995, pp. 288.

MOSTERT (M.) en DEMYTTENAERE (A.), De betovering van het middeleeuwse christendom. Studies over ritueel en magie in de Middeleeuwen, Hilversum, Verloren, 1995, pp. 313.

NIJSTEN (G.), Volkscultuur in de Late Middeleeuwen: feesten, processies en (bij)geloof, Utrecht, Kosmos, 1994, pp. 160.

PELLAERTS (T.) en GEENTJENS (E.), Magie, hekserij en volksgeloof, Kapellen, Nederlandsche Boekhandel, 1986, pp. 159.

 

 

vendredi, 22 février 2013

Sibelius and the God of the Wood

jean-sibelius.gif

Tapiola:
Sibelius & the God of the Wood

By Christopher Pankhurst

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/  

Tapiola is the last major work composed by Jean Sibelius. It was commissioned by the New York conductor Walter Damrosch at the beginning of 1926 and was premiered on Boxing Day of the same year. Damrosch asked for a symphonic poem with the choice of subject left to the composer. For inspiration Sibelius turned, as he so often did, to the Kalevala, the collection of Finnish folklore that looms so large in his work.

Sibelius was 60 when he began work on Tapiola and his reputation as Finland’s greatest composer was already sealed. He had become a quasi-official national composer due to his overt nationalism in supporting Finland’s right to independence against both Russian and Swedish domination. It is probably no great exaggeration to say that he was one of the most popular composers of the 20th century, at least in Scandinavian and Anglophone countries. In the heart of the European musical culture there was a large degree of suspicion about his popularity and a feeling that he was insufficiently modern, meaning that he was not in thrall to Schoenberg. Germany did come to love Sibelius, albeit in the 1930s and ’40s when he became a semi-official Nazi composer [2], allegedly telling the German troops in a message, “I wish with all my heart that you may enjoy a speedy victory.”[1] He thus became a favourite of both Berlin and New York.

Tapio is the god of the woodland and Tapiola is his home. Sibelius’s tone poem paints a rich picture of this homeland and succeeds in animating it with an array of supernatural entities. The score of Tapiola contains an explanatory quatrain:

Wide-spread they stand, the Northland’s dusky forests,
Ancient, mysterious, brooding savage dreams,
Within them dwells the Forest’s mighty God,
And wood-sprites in the gloom weave magic spells.

Humanity is fortunate indeed that Sibelius devoted his energies to music rather than poetry, but note nonetheless that “Forest” as well as “God” is capitalized in the third line. For Sibelius, there is a subtle and important identification to be made between the two.

Sibelius_Tapiola_Jarvi_JP.jpgThe music begins with a bold melodic motif that is repeated throughout. In fact, the piece has been called monothematic. This should not be seen as a criticism, however. What Sibelius does, and does brilliantly, is to unfold and examine this motif with varying emphases and with a wide range of orchestral techniques. As the work progresses, there is a sense that these discrete and distinctive reformulations of an underlying theme somehow evoke into being the varied life forms of the forest. The manifold entities are unique yet unified in a higher organizing principle, the tone poem’s motif itself, which yields to successive embodiments yet remains animated by its own structural discipline. The mood of the piece is neither light nor dark; it does not seem to be expressive of individual emotion. Instead it is a restive depiction of the forest with all its implied distance from human civilization.

Towards the end, the music recedes to silence from which emerges a remarkable storm of sound. The strings slide up and down in a confusion of dissonance whilst brass intrudes with ominous intent. This is the presence of Tapio and it induces a sensation of panic. Like the Greek Pan from whom we have the word “panic,” Tapio seems to bring the terror of nature, of uncontrolled and unconquered forces. Beyond the familiarity of the Northern European village, or still more outside the modern city, the forest holds a certain primal terror embodied in the numinous figure of the woodland God.

After the cacophony of Tapio’s appearance the music returns to a form of the recurring motif, now calmer and quieter. The meeting with the God and the terror invoked thereby have led to a more mature state of being and greater wisdom. Something has been learned from the woodland spirits.

Damrosch was delighted with Sibelius’s work and wrote to him that, “only a Norseman could have written it.” Although this judgement plays into the hands of those who deprecate Sibelius for his provincialism, it is astute. Sibelius conjures a numinous experience in this piece. The numen is the presiding god of a particular place. The word “numen” is related to the Latin nuere, “nod,” and to the Greek neuein, “incline the head,” indicating an assent or command. Thus, the word indicates the effects of the power of the local deity. This formal understanding of the numinous is particularly applicable to Sibelius.

Musicologists tend to be impressed with Sibelius’s use of atonality in the climactic encounter with Tapio; it suggests an incipient respect for avant-gardism largely absent from much of his other work. The interesting thing about the way that Sibelius uses this atonal moment though is that it is subservient to a greater overarching musical narrative. There is no reason why atonality cannot be used in music; it is especially effective in horror film music, for example. The problem with atonality is the hubristic attitude of its proponents who regard their listeners as imbecilic dullards needing to be shocked out of their 19th-century preoccupations.

The moment of confrontation with Tapio is actually difficult to listen to calmly. It impinges on bodily sensation, creating a constriction of breath and raising the hairs at the back of the neck. When it passes and calm is restored, the calmness is enhanced and more deeply appreciated. Like ghost stories that disrupt the natural order only to reinforce it at the end, the disorientation caused by the numinous panic of facing the God results in a more profound restoration of natural balance and a richer appreciation of the beauty that was always there. For the academic avant-garde this is mere conservatism. But the important point is that Sibelius’s music is deeply rooted in the primal landscape of his homeland. Regardless of the stories of the Kalevala that inspired him, his art is a primal expression of the numinous due to the genius of his interfusing melody with the landscape. His music is grounded, rooted; almost mystically expressive of the land. The arid intellectuality of much twentieth century composition withers away in comparison.

Tapiola benefits from a comparison with a later work, Tabula Rasa by Arvo Pärt. Like Tapiola, Tabula Rasa is a meditation on a theme and it submits its theme to a series of experimental unfoldings. In its first movement, Ludus, the melody is deconstructed and its chromatic implications are worked out to great effect. Like Tapiola, Tabula Rasa has a certain numinous, or mystical, quality but of a quite different type. Tabula Rasa is a fractal meditation, closely examining a natural unfolding such as the growth of a leaf. It is mystical in a Blakean sense, a revealing of the enfolded mysteries of nature, and whilst ably communicated through art it is a visionary moment of realisation granted only to the few. It is an illuminated manuscript in music.

Sibelius’s confrontation with his God is not visionary in the same sort of way. It is the feeling of being alone in the woods, far from humanity. It is a universal feeling (at least amongst Northern Europeans) and is consonant with pre-civilizational fears. The feelings of loneliness and vulnerability are the guards against hubris and the seeds of the numinous.

Tapiola is a beautifully pagan work of art. It expresses the numinous directly without recourse to elaborate theological concepts. It also shows that any musical technique is a valid one for the artist so long as he utilises it in furtherance of man’s engagement with the natural and sacred, not in pursuit of his own intellectual abstractions. Disorientation can have pedagogic value, but only if reorientation subsequently occurs.

Sibelius lived for 30 more years but composed nothing of value in that time. He destroyed his eighth symphony and it remains lost. It is almost as if the confrontation with his God of the woods left him with nothing further to say. He had turned the numinous into art and there is nothing greater for an artist to achieve. Tapiola remains a significant and numinous work of Northern European art.

Note

1. Alex Ross, The Rest is Noise (London: Harper Perennial, 2009), 190.

 


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2013/02/tapiola-sibelius-and-the-god-of-the-wood/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://www.counter-currents.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Sibelius.jpg

[2] a semi-official Nazi composer: http://www.counter-currents.com/2010/07/sibelius-the-nazis-anatomy-of-a-smear/

00:06 Publié dans Musique | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) | Tags : musique, jean sibelius, finlande, paganisme | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook

mardi, 06 novembre 2012

Entretien avec Gilbert Sincyr

1902761665.jpg

« Le Paganisme est une Vue du monde basée sur un sens du sacré, qui rejette le fatalisme. Il est fondé sur le sens de l’honneur et de la responsabilité de l’Homme, face aux évènements de la vie »

Entretien avec Gilbert Sincyr, auteur du livre Le Paganisme. Recours spirituel et identitaire de l’Europe

par Fabrice Dutilleul

Votre livre Le Paganisme. Recours spirituel et identitaire de l’Europe est un succès. Pourtant ce thème peut paraître quelque peu « décalé » à notre époque.

Bien au contraire : si les églises se vident, ce n’est pas parce que l’homme a perdu le sens du sacré, c’est parce que l’Européen se sent mal à l’aise vis-à-vis d’une religion qui ne répond pas à sa sensibilité. L’Européen est un être qui aspire à la liberté et à la responsabilité. Or, lui répéter que son destin dépend du bon vouloir d’un Dieu étranger, que dès sa naissance il est marqué par le péché, et qu’il devra passer sa vie à demander le pardon de ses soi-disant fautes, n’est pas ce que l’on peut appeler être un adulte maître de son destin. Plus les populations sont évoluées, plus on constate leur rejet de l’approche monothéiste avec un Dieu responsable de tout ce qui est bon, mais jamais du mal ou de la souffrance, et devant qui il convient de se prosterner. Maintenant que l’Église n’a plus son pouvoir dominateur sur le peuple, on constate une évolution vers une aspiration à la liberté de l’esprit. C’est un chemin à rebours de la condamnation évangélique, originelle et perpétuelle.

 

Alors, qu’est-ce que le Paganisme ?

C’est d’abord un qualificatif choisi par l’Église pour désigner d’un mot l’ensemble des religions européennes, puisqu’à l’évidence elles reposaient sur des valeurs communes. C’est donc le terme qui englobe l’héritage spirituel et culturel des Indo-européens. Le Paganisme est une Vue du monde basée sur un sens du sacré, qui rejette le fatalisme. Il est fondé sur le sens de l’honneur et de la responsabilité de l’Homme, face aux évènements de la vie. Ce mental de combat s’est élaboré depuis le néolithique au fil de milliers d’années nous donnant une façon de penser, une attitude face au monde. Il est à l’opposé de l’assujettissement traditionnel moyen-oriental devant une force extérieure, la volonté divine, qui contrôle le destin de chacun. Ainsi donc, le Paganisme contient et exprime l’identité que se sont forgés les Européens, du néolithique à la révolution chrétienne.

 

Vous voulez donc remplacer un Dieu par plusieurs ?

Pas du tout. Les temps ne sont plus à l’adoration. Les Hommes ont acquit des connaissances qui les éloignent des peurs ancestrales. Personne n’a encore apporté la preuve incontestable qu’il existe, ou qu’il n’existe pas, une force « spirituelle » universelle. Des hommes à l’intelligence exceptionnelle, continuent à s’affronter sur ce sujet, et je crois que personne ne mettrait sa tête à couper, pour l’un ou l’autre de ces choix. Ce n’est donc pas ainsi que nous posons le problème.

Le Paganisme, qui est l’expression européenne d’une vue unitaire du monde, à l’opposé de la conception dualiste des monothéismes, est la réponse spécifique d’autres peuples aux mêmes questionnements. D’où les différences entre civilisations.

Quand il y a invasion et submersion d’une civilisation par une autre, on appelle cela une colonisation. C’est ce qui s’est passé en Europe, contrainte souvent par la terreur, à changer de religion (souvenons-nous de la chasse aux idoles et aux sorcières, des destructions des temples anciens, des tortures et bûchers, tout cela bien sûr au nom de l’amour). Quand il y a rejet de cette colonisation, dans un but de recherche identitaire, on appelle cela une libération, ou une « Reconquista », comme on l’a dit de l’Espagne lors du reflux des Arabes. Et nous en sommes là, sauf qu’il ne s’agit pas de reflux, mais d’abandon de valeurs étrangères au profit d’un retour de notre identité spirituelle.

Convertis par la force, les Européens se libèrent. « Chassez le naturel et il revient au galop », dit-on, et voilà que notre identité refoulée nous revient à nouveau. Non pas par un retour des anciens Dieux, forme d’expression d’une époque lointaine, mais comme un recours aux valeurs de liberté et de responsabilité qui étaient les nôtres, et que le Paganisme contient et exprime.

Débarrassés des miasmes du monothéisme totalitaire, les Européens retrouvent leur contact privilégié avec la nature. On reparle d’altérité plutôt que d’égalité, d’honneur plutôt que d’humilité, de responsabilité, de volonté, de défi, de diversité, d’identité, enfin de ce qui constitue notre héritage culturel, pourchassé, rejeté et condamné depuis deux mille ans.

 

S’agit-il alors d’une nouvelle guerre de religion ?

Pas du tout, évidemment. Les Européens doivent dépasser ce qui leur a été imposé et qui leur est étranger. Nous devons réunifier sacré et profane, c’est-à-dire réaffirmer que l’homme est un tout, que, de ce fait, il est le maître de son destin car il n’y a pas dichotomie entre corps et esprit. Les Européens ne doivent plus s’agenouiller pour implorer le pardon de fautes définies par une idéologie dictatoriale moyen-orientale. Ce n’est pas vers un retour du passé qu’il nous faut nous tourner, gardons-nous surtout d’une attitude passéiste, elle ne serait que folklore et compromission. Au contraire des religions monothéistes, sclérosées dans leurs livres intouchables, le Paganisme, comme une source jaillissante, doit se trouver de nouveaux chemins, de nouvelles expressions. À l’inverse des religions du livre, bloquées, incapables d’évoluer, dépassées et vieillissantes, le Paganisme est l’expression de la liberté de l’homme européen, dans son environnement naturel qu’il respecte. C’est une source de vie qui jaillit de nouveau en Europe, affirmant notre identité, et notre sens du sacré, pour un avenir de fierté, de liberté et de volonté, dans la modernité.

 

Le Paganisme. Recours spirituel et identitaire de l’Europe de Gilbert Sincyr, éditions de L’Æncre, collection « Patrimoine des Religions », dirigée par Philippe Randa, 232 pages, 25 euros.

 

BON DE COMMANDE

Je souhaite commander :

 

… ex deLe Paganisme (25 euros)

 

 

Frais postaux France et Union européenne : 5 euros (1 livre)/6 euros (2 livres)/7 euros (3 livres ou plus)

Autres destinations : 10 euros (1 livre)/15 euros (2 livres)/20 euros (3 livres ou plus)

Règlement à l’ordre de Francephi. 

à renvoyer à : Francephi diffusion - Boite 37 - 16 bis rue d’Odessa - 75014 Paris - Tél. 09 52 95 13 34 - Fax. 09 57 95 13 34 – Mél. diffusion@francephi.com

Commande par internet (paiement sécurisé par carte bancaire ou paypal) sur notre site www.francephi.com.

samedi, 20 octobre 2012

Ásatrú & the Political

Les-valkyries-et-le-Walhalla.jpg

Ásatrú & the Political

By Collin Cleary 

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/

This essay is dedicated to George Hocking.

1. Introduction

Is there a connection between Ásatrú and White Nationalism? This has been a controversial issue among Ásatrúar for many years. For me, however, the answer is obvious. I regard Ásatrú and White Nationalism as so inseparably bound to one another that to espouse Ásatrú while rejecting White Nationalism is to involve oneself in a fatal contradiction (fatal, really, in more than just the logical sense).

Before I go any further, let me define my terms. For the uninitiated, Ásatrú refers to the religion of those who believe in the pre-Christian Germanic gods, principally Ódhinn (hence the religion is also sometimes referred to as “Odinism”). I use the term Ásatrú simply because it seems that we need a word to refer to the religion, and this seems as good to me as any.

By “White Nationalism” I mean, very simply, a movement which recognizes White people – people of European stock, in other words – as a distinct nation or race, with its own set of national interests, and that seeks to advance those interests. The principal interests of White people (of any people, actually) are their biological survival and the preservation of their culture. White nationalists believe that White people have as much right to assert and protect their interests as any other people.

Obviously, however, this movement arose because the dominant message communicated to Whites today by the cultural and political establishment is that they have no right to assert their group interests. Other racial and ethnic groups may assert their interests, but when Whites do likewise this is “racism.” This double standard is simply part and parcel of the general anti-White, anti-Western animus that now permeates academia, mainstream media, and politics in Europe and America. White nationalism has become necessary because White interests are genuinely imperiled.

Of course, Whites themselves have done a great deal to bring this peril about. Aside from their remarkably passive, uncomplaining tolerance of persons and ideologies openly hostile to them, Whites have also bought into a vision of the “good life” that emphasizes individualism and hedonism and absolves them of any obligation to bring a new generation into the world. The result is that the White birthrate has declined drastically, and created a situation in which Whites are essentially slated for minority status and dispossession in both Europe and America.

Contrary to how White Nationalism is portrayed by its detractors, it does not spring from hatred of other groups, nor does being a White Nationalist require us to hate non-Whites and wish them ill. It does, however, require us to recognize that our interests may sometimes conflict with those of other groups. And, in such situations, it asks us to choose our own group interests rather than to masochistically sacrifice those interests for the sake of others (something which is expected today of Whites, but not of any other group). White Nationalism, in effect, simply recommends to Whites that they do what we all know other groups are already doing and prioritize their own interests.

To take a familiar example, American Blacks clearly saw the 2008 presidential race in terms of “us vs. them.” Accordingly, 96% of them voted for Barack Obama, a fact which those in the mainstream media found so normal and unremarkable as to be unworthy of comment. On the other hand, when it was revealed that 55% of Whites voted for John McCain this was decried by many as “racism.” White people originated the utopian ideal of a society in which everyone has somehow gotten beyond thinking in terms of their group interests. But it’s time for them to face the harsh reality that this just isn’t going to happen. What this means is that if non-White groups insist on thinking and acting in terms of their group interests, then so must we.

I offer the above as a simple, frank, and accurate encapsulation of the nature of White Nationalism. But why must Ásatrú be linked with it? Why can’t Ásatrú, as a religion, be apolitical?

2. Ásatrú as Ethnic Religion

First of all, let’s begin with a very simple point: Ásatrú is an ethnic, not a creedal religion. Something is an “ethnic religion” if, quite simply, it is the religion of a specific people or ethnic group. Judaism and Hinduism are excellent examples of ethnic religions. One is a member of the religion simply by being born a member of the tribe or the nation.

A creedal religion is one in which membership is defined not by ethnic identity but rather, as the term implies, by profession of a creed. Islam, Christianity, and Buddhism are the three largest creedal religions. Because what counts in creedal religion is belief, not ethnicity, creedal religions are universalistic, accepting adherents from any and all races. On the other hand, because ethnic religions are the religions of a specific people they typically do not admit converts from other ethnic groups. (Both Judaism and Hinduism do admit converts in some cases, but they generally discourage conversion and do not – unlike the Christians and Muslims – proselytize.)

The term “Hinduism” is derived from the Persian word “Hindu,” which actually just denotes the Indian people. The etymology of “Judaism” is similar, deriving ultimately from a word that simply means “Jew.” The words themselves do not distinguish a member of the ethnic group from an adherent to the religion. And this ambiguity exists not just in language but in fact. For most Indians to be Indian is to be a Hindu (which really means, to be Indian is to be an Indian). I have even heard it said that it is possible to be an atheist Hindu. All that this means, of course, is that no matter what an Indian believes he can’t stop being an Indian (just like Karl Marx, who was an atheist, is still referred to as a Jewish, or German-Jewish philosopher). Of course, we might want to qualify this by saying an Indian cannot stop being an Indian in the ethnic sense. But the very identity of a people seems bound up with its religion – often in ways that the people themselves (who may outwardly profess secularism) may not be consciously aware of.  And the identity of an ethnic religion is bound up with its people.

In truth, an ethnic religion flows from the unique nature of a specific people. Culture is a human product, and like all human products it is partially the result of features about us that are innate and unchosen. In recent years, scientists have brought forward overwhelming evidence that proves heredity shapes much about our behavior and personality that we had formerly thought was due to environment or “freedom of choice.” Some of the most impressive evidence – evidence which is quite simply astonishing – comes from studies of identical twins separated at birth.[1] These twins often dress alike, vote alike, have the same hobbies, share the same social attitudes, share the same tastes in art and music, drive the same make and model car, and achieve virtually identical scores on IQ tests.

An ethnic group is essentially a set of genetically similar people. It is more or less a very large extended family. What establishes group identity is relative similarity and relative difference: members of ethnic group X are considered such because, while they are not exactly the same, they are more like one another than they are like the members of group Y. Similarity is founded upon difference (an important point, to which I will return later). At some point in pre-history, members of distinct ethnic groups, made up of genetically-similar members, evolved religions. And these religions are remarkably different from one another. I consider it a truism, at this stage of our knowledge, to assert that these differences flow in part from the genetically distinctive natures of the ethnic groups involved. I say “in part” because obviously other factors were in play: e.g., geographic location, historical circumstances, etc.

We can actually dispense with all this newfangled talk about genetics and boil it down to this: an ethnic religion is a product of the innate, distinctive nature of a people. Differences between ethnic religions are in part attributable to innate, natural differences. And the reason why a particular religion works so well for a given people is quite simply because, individual differences aside, they share the same basic nature (though here again other factors may come into play, such as sharing the same circumstances).

Religions are not floating systems of acontextual abstractions that may be superimposed on any people, willy-nilly. This is true even of creedal religions. Every creedal religion was developed originally by a specific people and only subsequently was membership thrown open to all and sundry. Most famously, Christianity was originally a minor Jewish cult which, in its earliest days, admitted only Jews as adherents. This means that despite whatever universalistic cast it may have, a creedal religion is still shaped by the character of the people that originated it. This is the reason why our Northern European ancestors had to radically reshape Christianity (to “Germanize” it) before they could sign on. This “Germanization of Christianity” was actually a long process, which culminated in the terrific upheaval and bloodshed of the Reformation.[2] A religion forged by one people in one part of the world cannot be imposed upon a completely different people, in a completely different part of the world, without much suffering, violence, and betrayal of conscience.

Ásatrú is the ethnic religion of the Northern European peoples who speak Germanic languages. It is the product of that “ethnic group” (an ethnic group that to a great extent did not and does not to this day see itself as a distinct ethnic group). And it could not be the product of any other group. Oswald Spengler aptly described the soul of Northern European man as “Faustian.” He tells us that the “prime-symbol” of the Faustian is “pure and limitless space”:

Far apart as may seem the Christian hymnology of the south and the Eddas of the still heathen north, they are alike in the implicit space-endlessness of prosody, rhythmic syntax and imagery. Read the Dies Irae together with the Völuspá, which is little earlier; there is the same adamantine will to overcome and break all resistances of the visible.[3]

The Faustian soul is characterized by a solemn inwardness, tending towards solitude and melancholy – but matched by a ceaseless, outward-striving will. European man has always sought to go beyond: to explore, to find adventures in other lands, to conquer, to peer into the mysterious depths of things, to find new ways to control and manipulate his environment. This is not to say that these qualities are never found in other peoples, but – as Spengler recognized – they are most pronounced and developed in Northern European man.

We find the Faustian spirit in our gods. Ódhinn is the ceaseless wanderer, and the leader of the wild hunt. From his throne, called Hlidskjalf, he can survey the entire world. His two ravens, Huginn and Muninn (Thought and Memory) fly over the earth, bringing news of all things back to him. But there are secrets concealed even from Ódhinn, and beings (such as the Norns) over which he has no power. Like us, he burns with a desire to know the hidden and to control his fate. So he hung on the windy tree, nights all nine, and won the secret of the runes – the hidden lore that explains all things. He sought wisdom too from Mimir’s well (the well of memory) and sacrificed an eye to drink from it. We are Ódhinn, and he is the embodiment of the Faustian spirit.

Spengler writes:

What is Valhalla? [It] is something beyond all sensible actualities floating in remote, dim, Faustian regions. Olympus rests on the homely Greek soil, the Paradise of the Fathers is a magic garden somewhere in the universe, but Valhalla is nowhere. Lost in the limitless, it appears with its inharmonious gods and heroes the supreme symbol of solitude. Siegfried, Parzeval, Tristan, Hamlet, Faust are the loneliest heroes in all the cultures. The longing for the woods, the mysterious compassion, the ineffable sense of forsakenness – it is all Faustian and only Faustian. Every one of us knows it. The motive returns with all its profundity in the Easter scene of Faust I.

“A longing pure and not to be described
drove me to wander over woods and fields,
and in a mist of hot abundant tears
I felt a world arise and live for me.”[4]

Ásatrú is an expression of the unique spirit of the Germanic peoples. And one could also plausibly claim that the spirit of the Germanic peoples just is Ásatrú, understanding its myth and lore simply as a way in which the people projects its spirit before itself, in concrete form. And this leads me back to where I began, to the “political” point of this essay: to value Ásatrú is to value the people of Ásatrú; to value their survival, their distinctness, and their flourishing. For one cannot have the one without the other.

Ásatrú would have not have been possible without the people who gave rise to it, and it cannot be sustained without that same people. Politically correct Ásatrú organizations like the Troth (formerly the Ring of Troth) essentially reject the idea that Ásatrú is an ethnic religion and treat it more or less on the model of the Unitarian Church, opening their doors to all peoples. But this is simply absurd. Ásatrú is not a trans-national “creed” that may be comfortably “professed” by all peoples. It is the worldview of a specific people, forged in its encounter with a certain part of the earth. The approach of organizations like the Troth does nothing more than demonstrate that their real religion is the civil religion of modern, secular liberalism, to which Ásatrú (and everything else) must be fitted. But no one with any knowledge of the sagas could possibly believe that Ásatrú is compatible with modern liberalism.

I am delighted if non-Whites find the lore of my ancestors fascinating. They may study it all they like – in fact, I would encourage them in this. But it is not their tradition and I would not invite them to consider themselves as “one of us” or to take part in our rituals. I find Shinto fascinating, and in general I am very interested in Japanese culture and have great respect for the Japanese people. But I would never seek to join the Shinto religion, because I am a White Westerner and it is not my tradition. And, by the way, should I seek to join Shinto and should the Japanese politely reject me, no one today would find it the least bit shocking or objectionable. Yet if we Ásatrúar take the same position and declare that our ethnic religion is for those of our ethnicity alone, this is regarded as a hideous form of “racism.” We need to do it anyway, and erect niding poles before the houses of the politically correct.

To repeat: to truly value Ásatrú must involve valuing the people who gave rise to Ásatrú and whose spirit the religion expresses. And valuing our people means seeking to preserve it and our culture, and, in all conflicts of interest between our people and some other, taking the side of our own people.

3. “Us” vs. “Them”

My last statement above reiterates the idea (mentioned early on in this essay) that there are conflicts of interest between human groups. I take this to be a truism, but in fact it is a controversial claim today. The ideal of multiculturalism, after all, is that of a society in which different groups happily coexist and have no fundamental conflicts of interest. But this ideal rests upon a breathtakingly shallow view of what “culture” consists in.

The liberal “celebration of diversity” is in fact a celebration of culture only in its external and superficial forms. In other words, to Western liberals “multiculturalism” winds up amounting simply to such things as the co-existence of different costumes, music, styles of dance, languages, and food. But the real guts of the different cultures consist in such things as how they view nature, how they view the divine, how they view men and women, and how they view the relative importance of their own group in the scheme of things. And it is by no means clear that members of cultures with radically different views on these matters can peacefully co-exist.[5]

It is chiefly affluent, college-educated White people who believe in the possibility of a Star Trek world without conflicts of group interests. Non-Whites typically do not believe that such a world is possible, and do not yearn for it, because they have a much keener sense of group identity than do Whites, and a much keener desire to promote the interests of their own group. White democrats are typically delighted when Black people move into their neighborhoods. When the situation is reversed, Blacks are comparatively less thrilled (the fact that the vast majority of them are also democrats does not seem to make much of a difference). Nor are Asians in Chinatown wringing their hands over why so few Latinos live on their block.

The reason for this is that these groups have a healthy proprietary sense. They believe that their neighborhoods belong to them. If others want to move in, this is perceived as a clear-cut conflict of interests. In fact, conflicts of interest between groups are real and ineradicable. They do not exist merely because individuals think that they exist, thus they cannot be eliminated simply by “changing people’s minds.” Conflicts of interest exist for the simple, metaphysical reason that every individual, and every group is something.

To be always means to be something; to possess a specific identity consisting of certain traits and not others. This is true of all things that exist: rocks, pencils, paramecia, human individuals, and human groups such as races or nations. But every identity is always an identity in difference. In other words, the identity of anything is constituted through the ways in which it is different from other things.

On the table to the left of my computer are two coffee mugs. They possess certain traits in common, in virtue of which I class them both as members of the same kind. But their possession of these traits is marked by difference. Both are ceramic and roughly the same height, but one of the mugs is thicker and heavier. Both can be filled with liquid, but the thin mug (because of its thinness) can contain more liquid. Both are emblazoned with designs, but the designs differ (one is just an image, but the other conveys a “message”: a quote from the agrarian author Wendell Berry).

A coffee mug is what it is by being different from other coffee mugs, but also by being different from everything else. The identity of something can be expressed positively, such as when we say that the mug is thick, four inches high, ceramic, and White. But every positive characteristic is actually a form of “not being”: the mug is thick and not thin, four inches high and not five, ceramic and not metal (or any other material), White and not some other color. The mug, furthermore, is characterized by being incapable of self-generated motion, stopping a bullet, standing for election, and a whole host of other things.

All identity is identity in difference, it does not matter what we are speaking of. And this includes peoples and cultures. The identity of a people is constituted through the ways in which it is not like other peoples. This leads to some peculiar problems that do not occur in the case of coffee mugs. The two mugs on my desk are different, but their differences do not lead to conflict. Only one of them rests on a coaster, but they cannot be said to be in competition for the coaster. With human beings it is quite different. Differences between human groups are always sources of potential conflict. This is also true, of course, of differences between human individuals – and of differences between individual animals, and animal species.

Our different ways of speaking, dressing, eating, practicing religion, making money, doing art, making music, raising children, understanding sex differences, and having sex are all perpetual sources of potential conflict between human groups. As are such things as differences of wealth and geographic location (others may want our land and our loot). To be a distinct human group is to be different from other groups, and where there is difference there is always, of necessity, friction, hostility, conflict, and often war. It is reasonable to see these as negatives, given the suffering they produce. But so long as there are distinct human groups these are ineradicable (which is exactly what some Leftists have realized in advocating miscegenation). Further, if we value the distinctness of our group – which really just amounts to saying if we value our group – then in a sense we have to recognize that friction with other groups is not entirely bad. It is simply a corollary of the fact that our group possesses identity; that it exists at all.

One of the shocking simplicities of multiculturalism is the naiveté with which the word “diversity” is invoked as a kind of feel-good mantra denoting something unqualifiedly positive. Diversity simply means difference, and human differences are not a happy, G-rated, child-friendly parade of colors, sounds, tastes, and scents. Diversity means perpetual conflict, misunderstanding, intolerance, and suspicion. Nevertheless: celebrate diversity! Because without diversity, without difference, we would be nothing at all.

The German political theorist Carl Schmitt (1888-1985) is famous for having argued that the “concept of the political” is founded on the distinction between “us vs. them,” or, as he actually puts it, friend and enemy. Do not be thrown by the word “political.” What Schmitt actually means is that human groups define themselves through opposition to an other. What unites a people is the recognition that they and their interests stand opposed to other groups, who have their own interests. From this sense of unity, a structure of power arises – a political order – in response to the opposition of the other. This involves such things as maintaining civil order and maintaining preparedness, so that if the threat of the other becomes acute the group will be ready to act.

Of course, I can easily imagine someone responding to this – quite reasonably – with the following objection: “Why must a group define itself in opposition to an other? Why must a group’s identity be built upon hostility and ill will?” But this objection misunderstands Schmitt’s position, and what the phrase “in opposition” really means. Schmitt’s claim is not specifically that group identity is founded upon hostility to some other group. Rather, what he means is that group identity is founded upon a sense of distinctness from other groups. However, as I have argued above, so long as this distinctness exists there is the ever-present possibility of conflicts of interest and hostility.

Schmitt writes that

The political enemy need not be morally evil or aesthetically ugly; he need not appear as an economic competitor, and it may even be advantageous to engage with him in business transactions. But he is, nevertheless, the other, the stranger; and it is sufficient for his nature that he is, in a specially intense way, existentially something different and alien, so that in the extreme case conflicts with him are possible.[6]

Schmitt goes on to note that all human divisions become political if they are so strong that they result in grouping human beings according to the friend-enemy distinction. This includes religious divisions. I ended the introduction to this essay with the rhetorical question “Why can’t Ásatrú, as a religion, be apolitical?” But even if we were to take the universalistic position of the Troth and regard Ásatrú as merely a set of “beliefs” that anyone can hold, we would still have to make a distinction between those who hold those beliefs and those who don’t; those within Ásatrú and those without. And we would have to recognize that outsiders are always potential “enemies”; that (as history has shown us countless times) doctrinal, religious differences frequently lead to hostilities.

As I have already shown, however, to understand Ásatrú as a creedal religion is to fundamentally distort and deform it. Ásatrú is an ethnic religion. Its identity – its distinctness – consists not just in its “beliefs,” but in the fact that it is a religion of this people not that one; and it is an expression of the nature of this people, not that one. To value and adhere to Ásatrú must therefore involve valuing the people of Ásatrú. However, we have seen that a people only constitutes itself as a people through difference. And where there is difference there is always the possibility of conflict.

To value the people of Ásatrú means, therefore, to recognize that there is no possibility of eliminating conflicts of interest between our people and other peoples. To value the people of Ásatrú means to be constantly vigilant in securing its interests, and always to choose our interests over those of other groups. “Us” vs. “them” is simply not going to go away. Indeed, as I alluded to earlier in this essay, the conflict between us and them has only intensified in recent years. And it is going to get worse. The survival of the people of Ásatrú itself is at stake. And without that people, there will be no Ásatrú.

So far I have offered a philosophical case for believing that adherence to Ásatrú must involve ethnic partisanism, and indeed that it must involve the uncompromising defense of our people’s interests. But let us set philosophical argument aside for the moment and simply ask what position is most in accord with the spirit of Ásatrú. Is it the position I have outlined, which insists on the organic connection between Ásatrú and our people and calls upon us, therefore, to defend our people’s interests even if that means ostracism, condemnation, or death? Or is it the position that disconnects Ásatrú from its people, insists that that people not commit the intolerable “racist” sin of asserting its interests, and enjoins them to cheerfully accept their dispossession and extinction? Which position is more in accord with the spirit of the sagas?

Those who believe that we can (or should) ignore differences and who dream of an end to all conflict are those who – whether they realize it or not – wish for the eradication of distinct identities. But without identity there is . . . nothing. Life – and being itself – is identity, and thus life is difference and strife. Our way – the pagan way of Ásatrú – is the affirmation of this life, red in tooth and claw. Their way is the way of death, extinction, annihilation. A “liberal pagan” is a contradiction in terms.

4. Just who is “our people”?

I now turn to some thorny questions about who it is that constitutes “our people.” I earlier defined the people of Ásatrú as Northern European people who speak Germanic languages. And I made it clear that I am speaking about a distinct ethnic group. Thus, someone whose ancestry is Nigerian or Chinese and happens to live in Denmark and speak Danish does not count. Ancestry is what counts here.

But at this point one might raise a problem with the argument of this essay thus far. I have attempted to make the case that Ásatrú is, or ought to be, inseparable from White Nationalism. But White Nationalism is not exclusively about defending the interests of the Germanic peoples. It’s also about defending the interests of those who are (again, ethnically) Italian, Spanish, Russian, Czech, Polish, Greek, etc. These are all “White people.” But not all of them can plausibly be called the people of Ásatrú.

Yes, one can argue that Ásatrú is but one variation of Indo-European spirituality, and that all of these people – in pre-Christian times – were practicing folk religions closely related to Ásatrú. But it would be awfully strained and artificial to argue that just because this is the case, we should therefore care about what happens to non-Germanic, European people. It seems like actually the most one can argue, using the sort of logic I’ve employed in this essay, is that Ásatrúar of genuinely Northern European or Germanic stock should care about the interests of other people of similar stock. But it is going too far to say that they should be “White Nationalists.”

This certainly seems like a major problem, but in fact it is not.

Let’s begin with an obvious point that I have so far not mentioned: it is natural for people to prefer others like themselves, and to feel greater sympathy for others like themselves. This has its basis, again, in genetic similarity. Brothers care more about their sisters, typically, than they care about their second cousins – even if they have all grown up in close proximity. Cousins typically care more about each other than they do about the neighbors, even if the neighbors are members of the same ethnic group. And neighbors of the same ethnic group typically care more about each other, and trust each more, than they do the neighbors down the block who belong to a different ethnic group.

It is quite natural for an Englishman to feel a greater tie to other Englishmen than to the French. And it quite natural for me, whose ancestry is predominantly Germanic (despite my Irish name) to feel closer to an Englishman than to a Frenchman. But there are times when I can feel quite close to a Frenchman. For example, if I happen to run into one while visiting Nigeria. In such circumstances, the cultural, temperamental, and even linguistic differences between us are going to feel very slight. Were a Dane around also, I’m guessing I would form a stronger bond with the Dane than with the Frenchman. But I would bond with the Frenchman as well because, after all, he’s like me too (just, perhaps, not as much like me).

So, who is our people? It is quite natural for me and others like me to feel closest of all to others of Germanic ancestry. But other Europeans are like me as well. By extension, they are my people as well. The analogy to family and extended family is useful here. I will always feel the closest bond with my immediate family. But I also feel a bond, though not as close, with my cousins. To take a hackneyed example, if my cousin Alfred were drowning in a lake and a perfect stranger were drowning as well and I could only save one, I would save my cousin. And no one would fault me.

If a White stranger were drowning in a lake and a black stranger were drowning as well and I could only save one, who would I save? I imagine I would probably act instinctively to save the White man – and I submit that this would be as natural (and unmalicious) a reaction as preferring to save one’s family member. Yet it would no doubt be denounced as “racism.” It would not matter to me if the White person were Danish or Greek. I would act instinctively to help him, just because he’s “like me.” This natural preference for one’s own is something to be cultivated and celebrated. It is thoroughly anathema to Christianity (which only permits preferring Christians to non-Christians, and not even that really), and it is thoroughly “pagan.”

My essay so far seems to be enjoining Ásatrúar to start caring about members of their own group. In fact, I am merely encouraging them to reflect on the ties they already feel with their own group – whether they are consciously aware of those feelings or not – and to affirm them without shame. However, today the truth is that I don’t just feel a tie to other Northern Europeans, but with White people generally.

It is natural for us to think of multiculturalism, massive non-White immigration into Europe and America, and the declining White birth rate as unmitigated disasters. But the “cunning of reason” is at work here, as it always is. The positive effect of all of this is that it can forge a sense of European – or White – identity and unity such as has never existed before. It is sobering to look back over the course of European history and to realize that there was a time (very recently, in fact) when it would have been nearly impossible for members of different European nations to see each other as “like us.” That the English used to be mortal enemies with the Spanish, that the Germans fought the Austrians, and the Austrians fought the Italians, and so on, now seems almost incredible. That some of these innumerable, fratricidal conflicts were (ostensibly) over different inflections of Christianity is positively sickening.

Of course, a liberal might object to my argument by saying that changing historical circumstances have also resulted in our feeling greater ties and greater sympathy with members of other races as well. Just as the English and the French now feel that they are basically more alike than opposed, so multiculturalism has resulted in our feeling natural sentiments of sympathy with the Chinese and the Nigerians as well. The evidence for this includes an increase in interracial marriages. Also, the fact that everyone today (excluding White racists) has at least one friend of another race. Doesn’t my position actually hypocritically enjoin us to ignore the natural sentiments we now feel toward other races? Or, putting it another way, aren’t I arbitrarily encouraging my readers to affirm some of their natural sentiments and to deny others?

The trouble with this argument is that it rests both on false claims, and on an overly narrow understanding of what “natural sentiments” are. First of all, it has always been the case that members of different races have been capable of feeling sympathy for, and bonding with one another. It is also the case that humans – of any race – form bonds with members of other species, as any pet owner can attest.

But the truth is that people of different races typically only form deep bonds with each other in unusual and extraordinary circumstances (e.g. if they happen to share the same foxhole). Otherwise, the bonds tend to be mostly temporary and do not go very deep (as is the case with co-worker “friends” of different races). Yes, interracial marriage is more common than it used to be, but the vast majority of people still prefer to marry within their race. And the divorce rate among interracial couples is significantly greater than that of same-race couples. And yes, it is true that everyone today has at least one friend of a different race – everyone on television, that is. The reality is that most people prefer the company of their own kind, and form the deepest bonds with others like themselves – whether we are talking about married couples, friends, roommates, coworkers, business partners, or what have you.

To return to my earlier example: is it possible that in addition to bonding with the Dane and the Frenchman I might also bond with a Nigerian? Absolutely. But the bond is unlikely to be as strong or as deep. And should strife erupt on my visit to Nigeria, should Nigerians begin killing Whites (as is happening right now to White farmers in Zimbabwe), I would unhesitatingly band together with my Dane and my Frenchman, and probably forget about my Nigerian friend entirely. (Disraeli really was right: “Race is everything. There is no other truth.”)

Finally, we must also keep in mind that “natural sentiments” are not confined to sympathy. Another natural sentiment is antipathy. And antipathy is born of difference; the greater the difference the stronger the likelihood of antipathy. Let us affirm all of our natural sentiments, both the bitter and the sweet.

5. Conclusion: Quo Vadis, Ásatrú?

I turn now to another consideration about who “our people” is. I can imagine a follower of Ásatrú objecting to the argument of this essay by saying “Look, why should I give a damn about ‘my people’? The vast majority of them regard Ásatrú as an absurdity. They are a people thoroughly corrupted by modern individualism and consumerism. They are lemmings passively cooperating in their own destruction. They are Last Men. Men without chests. Hollow men. Men without qualities. Trousered apes. Why should I stick my neck out and be a White Nationalist when it would cause most average White people to want spit in my face and call me names?”

I have heard such sentiments expressed not just by Ásatrúar, but by many Whites with no particular interest in Ásatrú. The trouble with this position, though, is that it simply expects too much of our people. It has always been the case, without exception, that the vast majority of the people of any race are essentially conformists who do as they are told, and are often incapable of perceiving what’s really good for them.

The greatness of our people does not consist in our being individualists who are always ready and willing to break with the crowd. The greatness of our people consists in what they are capable of when they are properly led. Yes, the sagas celebrate the deeds of heroic individuals who often break the rules. But such individuals are celebrated because they are exceptional. It is such men who lead, and command the loyalty of others (which is the virtue most conspicuously celebrated in the Germanic tradition). All peoples need leaders; they seldom if ever liberate or enlighten themselves. If great changes are to be made a vanguard is needed, and in the beginning that vanguard will be feared and despised.

Our people have undergone centuries of brainwashing by Christianity, the Enlightenment, and cultural Marxism (three peas in a pod, actually). It is unreasonable to expect them to overcome this quickly, and without a great deal of assistance. Instead of hating our own people for their degraded condition we must instead learn to pity them. And we must learn to love them as we do errant children.

This is, admittedly, not that easy. Especially given that the modern world does all it can to tear us apart from each other. The rapaciousness of capitalism sets brother against brother and uproots us from the towns our families have called home for generations. It turns marriages into “partnerships” of two upwardly mobile consumers who remain together so long as the arrangement is mutually advantageous. Feminism simply aids and abets this aberration of capitalism, setting men and women against each other. Sons are set against fathers by a culture that insists that youth must rebel against age, and that there is value only in youth. And neighbors are set against each other as well; gone is the trust that allowed us once upon a time to leave our doors unlocked.[7] It is a wonder that we are able to feel anything for each other at all. This is a problem that we must work to overcome, not worsen by abjuring the realm and declaring others like ourselves to be “hopeless.”

The culture of our people has changed radically over the centuries, mainly for the worse. Yes, we have been corrupted and so have our values. But in fact we are still fundamentally the same people. Early on in this essay I spoke of how Ásatrú is a product of the unique nature of our people – a product, if you like, of our genetically distinct nature. That nature has not changed. Genetically, we are the same as we were in the time of Arminius. Underneath the veneer of modern decadence we are still the same people who slaughtered 20,000 Romans in the Teutoburg Forest. We are still the same people who carved the runes and thrilled to stories of Ódhinn and the gods. We are still the same people whose ideal of feminine virtue was the bloodthirsty Gudrun. And we are the people of Shakespeare, Schiller, Goethe, Mozart, Beethoven, Nietzsche, and Wagner.

The bloodline still exists, and the potential still exists within the blood. Our religion, Ásatrú, is obsessed with clan and ancestral identity. And we modern Ásatrúar claim to honor our ancestors. So I ask you: is there a greater way to honor our ancestors than to act to safeguard and revivify their bloodline? We like to posture as Norsemen. But the truth is that our ancestors would never recognize most of us, because most of us have committed sins they would find incomprehensible. We have turned out backs on our own people – and are cheerfully, unashamedly in full retreat.

It is time to ask ourselves just exactly what Ásatrú is to us and where it is going. Is our aim simply that Ásatrú be accepted as yet another “lifestyle choice” in the great multicultural stew of New Age “spirituality”? Is it enough simply that we are able to get together with other oddballs like ourselves and put on silly costumes and perform rituals in dead languages? The only thing that can redeem Ásatrú and raise it above the level of being yet another modern form of isolating, self-indulgent eccentricity is if we come to see Ásatrú as requiring something great of us. And, again, what greater task could there be than the salvation of our people? Again, what task is more worthy of Ásatrú, the religion of epic heroes, of our ancestors, the religion in which blood is everything?

Ásatrú just is the heroic commitment to our people and to its spirit. Compared to this all else – the runes, Old Norse, drinking horns, mead, skaldic verse, and so on – is external and inessential. But it is completely unsurprising that so many would choose the external over the essential. This is the modern way. Especially when the essential involves a commitment to something as fundamentally anti-modern, “irrational,” and dangerous as loyalty to those like oneself, simply because they are like oneself. Nevertheless, this is it. Setting all externals and non-essentials aside, this is our ethnic religion; this is Ásatrú. To defend the people of Ásatrú and its spirit is itself Ásatrú.

It is time to reflect on the ambiguity of the term “ethnic religion,” about which I earlier said only a little. An ethnic religion is a religion “of” a people in more than one way. In the deepest way, an ethnic religion is the spirit of a unique people made manifest to itself. In a sense, it is through their ethnic religion that a people worships itself. The religion is the people, and the people are the religion. This is the most fundamental answer to the question of the connection between Ásatrú and “the political,” or the connection of Ásatrú to “White Nationalism.” There is no problem about connecting these, in fact. They are already together – tied together intimately and inseparably, whether this is recognized by all Ásatrúar (or all White Nationalists) or not.[8]

Notes

[1] See Nancy L. Segal, Born Together—Reared Apart: The Landmark Minnesota Twins Study (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2012).

[2] See James Russell, The Germanization of Early Medieval Christianity: A Sociohistorical Approach to Religious Transformation (New York: Oxford University Press, 1994).

[3] Oswald Spengler, The Decline of the West, Vol. I, trans. Charles Francis Atkinson (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1926), 185-86.

[4] Spengler, 185-86.

[5] Unless, of course all cultural differences are eliminated save the purely external, via the transformation of all peoples into homogenized, interchangeable consumers bereft of any deeply-felt convictions. This is, in fact, the hidden global capitalist agenda of multiculturalism, now being cheerfully advanced by useful idiots on the anti-capitalist Left.

[6] Carl Schmitt, The Concept of the Political, trans. George Schwab (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007), 27.

[7] Studies have shown that in multicultural neighborhoods distrust is high, even among members of the same group.

[8] An interesting implication of all the above – which I cannot develop here – is the other side of the equation: White Nationalism is inseparably connected to Ásatrú. This will be resisted by many White Nationalists. Some are atheists who reject all religion. Others view Ásatrúar (not without some justification) as, at best, eccentrics in funny hats. But if my basic argument is effective, that Ásatrúar should be White Nationalists because Ásatrú is in fact the expression of the spirit of (Northern European) White people, then we must recognize that this also supports the claim that White Nationalists should be Ásatrúar – at least those of Northern European ancestry. There are movements of other European peoples that seek to revive worship of their old gods – such as the Greek organization Thyrsos Hellenes Ethnikoi – and I applaud them.

 


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2012/10/asatru-and-the-political/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://www.counter-currents.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/Valhalla.jpg

00:05 Publié dans Traditions | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) | Tags : asatru, mythologie, paganisme, traditions | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook

mercredi, 25 juillet 2012

Paganism & Vitalism in Knut Hamsun & D. H. Lawrence

Paganism & Vitalism in
Knut Hamsun & D. H. Lawrence

 

By Robert Steuckers 

[1]

Knut Hamsun

Ex. http://www.counter-currents.com

Part 1 of 2

Translated by Greg Johnson

The Hungarian philologist Akos Doma, educated in Germany and the United States, has published a work of literary interpretation comparing the works of Knut Hamsun and D. H. Lawrence: Die andere Moderne: Knut Hamsun, D. H. Lawrence und die lebensphilosophische Strömung des literarischen Modernismus [The Other Modernity: Knut Hamsun, D. H. Lawrence, and the Life-Philosophical Current of Literary Modernism] (Bonn: Bouvier, 1995). What they share is a “critique of civilization,” a concept that one must put in context.

Civilization is a positive process in the eyes of the “progressivists” who see history as a vector, for the adherents of the philosophy ofAufklärung [Enlightenment], and for the unconditional followers of a certain modernity aiming at simplification, geometrization, and cerebralization.

But civilization appears as a negative process for all those who intend to preserve the incommensurable fruitfulness of cultural matrices, for all those who observe, without being scandalized, that time is “plurimorphic,” i.e., the time of one culture is not that of another (whereas the believers of Aufklärung affirm that one monomorphic time applies to all peoples and cultures of the Earth). Thus to each people its own time. If modernity refuses to see this plurality of forms of time, it is illusion.

To a certain extent, Akos Doma explains, Hamsun and Lawrence were heirs of Jean-Jacques Rousseau. But which Rousseau? The one stigmatized by Maurras, Lasserre, and Muret, or the one who radically criticized the Enlightenment but without also thereby defending the Old Regime? For this Rousseau who was critical of the Aufklärung, this modern ideology is in reality that exact opposite of the ideal slogan that it intends to universalize though political activism: it is inegalitarian and hostile to freedom, even as it proclaims equality and freedom.

For Rousseau and his proto-Romantic followers, before the modernity of the 18th century, there was a “good community,” conviviality reigned among men, people were “good,” because nature was “good.” Later, in the Romantics, who were conservatives on the political plane, this concept of “goodness” was quite prominent, whereas today one attributes it only to activists or revolutionary thinkers. Thus the idea of “goodness” was present on “Right” as well as on “Left” of the political chessboard.

But for the English Romantic poet Wordsworth, nature is “the theater of all real experience” because man is really and immediately confronted by the elements, which implicitly leads us beyond good and evil. Wordsworth is certainly “perfectibilist”: man in his poetic vision reaches for excellence, perfection. But man, contrary to what was thought and imposed by the proponents of the Enlightenment, is not perfected solely by developing the faculties of his intellect. The perfection of man happens mainly through the ordeal of elemental nature.

For Novalis, nature is “the space of mystical experience, which allows us to see beyond contingencies of urban and artificial life.” For Joseph von Eichendorff, nature is freedom, and in this sense it is a transcendence, as it allows us to escape from the narrowness of conventions, of institutions.

With Wordsworth, Novalis, and Eichendorff, the themes of immediacy, of vital experience, the refusal of contingencies arising from the artificial conventions are in place. From Romanticism in Europe, especially in Northern Europe, developed a well thought out hostility to all forms of modern social life and economics. Thomas Carlyle, for example, praised heroism and disdained the “cash flow society.” This is the first critique of the rule of money. John Ruskin, with his plans for a more organic architecture and garden cities, aimed to beautify the cities and to repair the social and urban damage of the rationalism that had unfortunately arisen from Manchesterism. Tolstoy propagated an optimistic naturalism that owed nothing to Dostoevsky, the brilliant analyst and dramatist of the worst blacknesses of the human soul. Gauguin transplanted his ideal of human goodness in the islands of Polynesia, to Tahiti, among flowers and exotic beauties.

[2]

D. H. Lawrence

Hamsun and Lawrence, unlike Tolstoy or Gauguin, develop a vision of nature without teleology, without a “good end,” without marginal paradisal spaces: they have assimilated the double lesson of pessimism from Dostoevsky and Nietzsche. Nature, for them, is no longer an idyllic excursion, as in the English Lake District poets. It is not necessarily a space of adventure or violence, or posed a priori as such. Nature, for Hamsun and Lawrence, is above all the inwardness of man; it is his inner springs, his dispositions, his mind (brain and guts are inextricably linked together). Therefore, a priori, in Hamsun and Lawrence, the nature of man is neither demonic nor pure intellectuality. It is rather the real, as real as the Earth, as real as Gaia, the real source of life.

Before this source, modern alienation leaves us with two opposing human attitudes: (1) to put down roots, a source of vitality, (2) to fall into alienation, a source of disease and paralysis. It is between the two terms of this polarity that we can fit the two great works of Hamsun and Lawrence: Growth of the Soil for the Norwegian, The Rainbow for the Englishman.

In Hamsun’s Growth of the Soil, nature is the realm of existential work, where Man works in complete independence to feed and perpetuate himself. Nature is not idyllic, as in some pastoralist utopia. Work in not abolished. It is an unavoidable condition, a destiny, an essential element of humanity, whose loss would mean de-humanization. The main hero, the farmer Isak, is ugly in face and body. He is crude, simple, rustic, but unwavering. He is completely human in his finitude but also in his determination.

The natural space, the Wildnis, this space that sooner or later will receive the stamp of man, is not the realm of human time, that of clocks, but of the rhythm of the seasons, of periodic rotations. In that space, in that time, we do not ask questions, we work to survive, to participate in a rhythm that surpasses us. This destiny is hard. Sometimes very hard. But it gives us independence, autonomy; it allows a direct relationship with our work. Hence it gives meaning. So there is meaning. In Lawrence’s The Rainbow, a family lives on the land in complete independence on the fruits of its own crops.

Hamsun and Lawrence, in these two novels, leave us with the vision of a man rooted in a homeland (ein beheimateter Mensch), a man with a limited territorial base. The beheimateter Mensch needs no book learning, needs no preaching from the media; his practical knowledge is sufficient; thanks to it, he gives meaning to his actions, while allowing imagination and feeling. This immediate knowledge gives him unity with other beings participating in life.

In this perspective, alienation, a major theme of the 19th century, takes on another dimension. Generally, the problem of alienation is addressed from three different bodies of doctrine: (1) The Marxists and historicists locate alienation in the social sphere, whereas for Hamsun and Lawrence, it lies in the inner nature of man, regardless of social position or material wealth. (2) Alienation is addressed by theology and anthropology. (3) Alienation is seen as a social anomie.

For Hegel and Marx, the alienation of the people or the masses is a necessary step in the gradual process of narrowing the gap between reality and the absolute. In Hamsun and Lawrence, alienation is more fundamental; its causes are not socio-economic or political; they lie in our distance from the roots of nature (which to that extent is not “good”). One does not overcome alienation by creating a new socioeconomic order.

According to Doma, in Hamsun and Lawrence, the problem of the cut, of the caesura is essential. Social life has become uniform, tends toward uniformity, automation, excessive functionalization, while nature and work in the cycle of life are not uniform and constantly mobilize vital energies. There is immediacy, while everything in urban, industrial, modern life is mediated, filtered. Hamsun and Lawrence rebelled against this filter.

In “nature” the forces of interiority count, particularly for Hamsun, and to a lesser extent for Lawrence. With the advent of modernity, men are determined by factors external to them, such as conventions, political agitation, public opinion that gives them the illusion of freedom while it is in fact the realm of manipulation. In this context, communities are breaking up: each individual is content with his sphere of autonomous activity in competition with others. Then we arrive at anomie, isolation, the hostility of each against all.

The symptoms of this anomie are crazes for superficial things, for sophisticated garb (Hamsun), signs of a detestable fascination for what is external, for a form of dependence, itself a sign of inner emptiness. Man is torn by the effects of external stresses. These are all indications of loss of vitality in alienated man.

In the alienation of urban life, man finds no stability because life in the metropolis resists any form of stability. Such an alienated man cannot return to his community, his family of origin. For Lawrence, whose writing is more facile but more striking: “He was the eternal audience, the chorus, the spectator at the drama; in his own life he would have no drama.” “He scarcely existed except through other people.” “He had come to a stability of nullification.”

In Hamsun and Lawrence, EntwurzelungUnbehaustheit, rootlessness and homelessness, this way of being without hearth or home, is the great tragedy of humanity in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. To Hamsun, place is vital for humans. Every man should have his place. The location of his existence. One can not be cut off from one’s place without profound mutilation. This mutilation is primarily mental; it is hysteria, neurosis, imbalance. Hamsun is a psychologist. He tells us: self-consciousness from the start is a symptom of alienation.

Already Schiller, in his essay Über naive und sentimentalische Dichtung [On Naïve and Sentimental Poetry], noted that agreement between thought and feeling was tangible, real, interior for natural man, but it is now ideal and exterior in cultivated humans (“the concord between his feelings and his thoughts existed at the origin, but no longer exists except at the level of the ideal. This concord is no longer in man, but hovers somewhere outside of him; it is no more than an idea that has yet to be realized; it is no longer a fact of life”).

Schiller hoped for an Überwindung (overcoming) of this caesura, for a total mobilization of the individual to fill this caesura. Romanticism, for him, aimed at the reconciliation of Being (Sein) and consciousness (Bewußtsein), fighting the reduction of consciousness solely to rational understanding. Romanticism values, and even overvalues what is “other” to reason (das Andere der Vernunft): sensual perception, instinct, intuition, mystical experience, childhood, dreams, pastoral life.

The English Romantic Wordsworth deemed this desire for reconciliation between Being and consciousness “rose,” calling for the emergence of “a heart that watches and receives.” Dostoevsky abandoned this “rose” vision, developing in response a quite “black” vision, in which the intellect is always a source of evil that led the “possessed” to kill or commit suicide. In the same vein, in philosophical terms, G. E. Lessing and Ludwig Klages emulated this “black” vision of the intellect, while considerably refining naturalist Romanticism: to Klages, the mind is the enemy of the soul; to Lessing, the mind is the counterpart of life, born of necessity (“Geist ist das notgeborene Gegenspiel des Lebens”).

Lawrence, in some sense faithful to the English Romantic tradition of Wordsworth, believes in a new adequation of Being and consciousness. Hamsun, more pessimistic, more Dostoyevskian (hence his success in Russia and its impact on such ruralists writers as Belov and Rasputin), persisted in the belief that as soon as there is consciousness there is alienation. Once man begins to reflect on himself, he detaches himself from the natural continuum, in which he should normally be rooted.

In Hamsun’s theoretical writings, there is a reflection on literary modernism. Modern life, influences, processes, refine man to rescue him from his destiny, his destined place, his instincts which lie beyond good and evil. The literary development of the 19th century betrays a feverishness, an imbalance, a nervousness, an extreme complexity of human psychology. “The general (ambient) nervousness has gripped our fundamental being and has rubbed off on our feelings.” Hence the writer now defines himself on the model of Zola, as a “social doctor” who describes social evils to eliminate disease. The writer, the intellectual, and develops a missionary spirit aiming at a “political correctness.”

Against this intellectual vision of the writer, Hamsun replies that it is impossible to objectively define the reality of man, for an “objective man” would be a monstrosity (ein Unding), constructed in a mechanical manner. We cannot reduce man to a catalog of characteristics, for man is changing, ambiguous. Lawrence had the same attitude: “Now I absolutely flatly deny that I am a soul, or a body, or a mind, or an intelligence, or a brain, or a nervous system, or a bunch of glands, or any of the rest of these bits of me. The whole is greater than the part.” Hamsun and Lawrence illustrate in their works that it is impossible to theorize or absolutize a clear and distinct view of man. Thus man is not the vehicle of preconceived ideas.

Hamsun and Lawrence note that progress in self-awareness is not the process of spiritual emancipation, but rather a loss, a draining of vitality, of vital energy. In their novels, it is the characters who are still intact because they are unconscious (that is to say, embedded in their soil or site) who persevere, triumphing over the blows of fate and unfortunate circumstances.

There is no question, we repeat, of pastoralism or idyllism. The characters of Hamsun’s and Lawrence’s novels are traversed or solicited by modernity, hence their irreducible complexity: they may succumb, they suffer, they undergo a process of alienation but can also overcome it. This is where the Hamsun’s irony and Lawrence’s notion of the phoenix come in. Hamsun’s irony ridicules the abstract ideals of modern ideologies. In Lawrence, the recurrent theme of the phoenix indicates a certain degree of hope: there will be resurrection. Like the phoenix rising from the ashes.

Paganism & Vitalism in Knut Hamsun & D. H. Lawrence, Part 2


[1]

Ludwig Fahrenkrog, “The Holy FirePart 2 of 2

Translated by Greg Johnson

The Paganism of Hamsun and Lawrence

If Hamsun and Lawrence carry out their desire to return to a natural ontology by rejecting rationalist intellectualism, this also implies an in-depth contestation of the Christian message.

In Hamsun, we find the rejection of his family’s Puritanism (that of his uncle Hans Olsen), the rejection of the Protestant worship of the book and the text, i.e., an explicit rejection of a system of religious thought resting on the primacy of pure scripture against existential experience (in particular that of the autarkical peasant, whose model is that of Odalsbond of the Norwegian countryside).

The anti-Christianity of Hamsun is rather non-Christianity: it does not give rise to religious questioning in the mode of Kierkegaard. For him, the moralism of the Protestantism of the Victorian era (in Scandinavia, they called it the Oscarian era) is quite simply an expression of devitalisation. Hamsun does not recommend any mystical experience.

Above all, Lawrence is concerned with the caesura between man and the cosmic mystery. Christianity reinforces this wound, prevents it from clotting, prevents it from healing. However, European religiosity preserves a residue of this worship of the cosmic mystery: it is the liturgical year, the liturgical cycle (Easter, Pentecost, Midsummer, Halloween, Christmas, Epipany).

But these had been hit hard by the processes of disenchantment and desacralization, starting with the advent of the primitive Christian church, reinforced by Puritanism and Jansensim after the Reformation. The first Christians clearly wanted to tear man away from these cosmic cycles. The medieval church, however, sought adequation between man and cosmos, but the Reformation and Counter-Reformation both clearly expressed a return to the anti-cosmism of primitive Christianity. Lawrence writes:

But now, after almost three thousand years, now that we are almost abstracted entirely from the rhythmic life of the seasons, birth and death and fruition, now we realize that such abstraction is neither bliss nor liberation, but nullity. It brings null inertia.

This caesura is a property of the Christianity of urban civilizations, where there is longer an opening to the cosmos. Thus Christ is no longer a cosmic Christ, but a Christ reduced to the role of a social worker. Mircea Eliade spoke of a “cosmic Man,” open to the vastness of cosmos, the pillar of all the great religions. From Eliade’s perspective, the sacred is reality, power, the source of life and fertility. Eliade: “The desire of the religious man to live a life in the sacred is the desire to live in objective reality.”

The Ideological and Political Lessons of Hamsun and Lawrence

On the ideological and political plane, on the plane of Weltanschauungen, Hamsun and Lawrence had a rather considerable impact. Hamsun was read by everyone, beyond the polarity of Communism/Fascism. Lawrence was labeled “fascistic” on a purely posthumous basis, in particular by Bertrand Russell who spoke about his “madness” (“Lawrence was a suitable exponent of the Nazi cult of insanity”). This phrase is at the very least simple and concise.

According to Akos Doma, the works of Hamsun and Lawrence fall under four categories: the philosophy of life, the avatars of individualism, the vitalistic philosophical tradition, and anti-utopianism and irrationalism.

1. Life-philosophy (Lebensphilosophie) is a polemical term, opposing the “vivacity of real life” to the rigidity of conventions, the artificial games invented by urban civilization to try to give meaning to a totally disenchanted world. Life-philosophy appears under many guises in European thought and takes shape beginning with Nietzsche’s reflections on Leiblichkeit (corporeity).

2. Individualism. Hamsun’s anthropology postulates the absolute unicity of each individual, of each person, but refuses to isolate this individual or this person from any communal context, carnal or familiar: he always places the individual or the person in interaction, in a particular place. The absence of speculative introspection, consciousness, and abstract intellectualism make Hamsun’s individualism unlike the anthropology of the Enlightenment.

But, for Hamsun, one does not fight the individualism of the Enlightenment by preaching an ideologically contrived collectivism. The rebirth of the authentic man happens by a reactivation of the deepest wellsprings of his soul and body. Mechanical regimentation is a calamitous failure. Therefore, the charge of “fascism” does not hold for either Lawrence or Hamsun.

3. Vitalism takes account of all the facts of life and excludes any hierarchisation on the basis race, class, etc. The characteristic oppositions of the vitalist movement are: assertion of life/negation of life; healthy/unhealthy; mechanical/organic. Thus one cannot reduce them to social categories, parties, etc. Life is a fundamentally apolitical category, because it subsumes all men without distinction.

4. For Hamsun and Lawrence, the reproach of “irrationalism,” like their anti-utopianism, comes from their revolt against “feasibility” (Machbarkeit), against the idea of infinite perfectibility (which one finds in an “organic” form in the first generation of English Romantics). The idea of feasibility goes against the biological essence of nature. Thus the idea of feasibility is the essence of nihilism, according to the contemporary Italian philosopher Emanuele Severino.

For Severino, feasibility derives from a will to complete a world posited as being in becoming (but not an uncontrollable organic becoming). Once this process of completion is achieved, becoming inevitably ceases. Overall stability is necessary to the Earth, and this stability is described as a frozen “absolute good.”

In a literary manner, Hamsun and Lawrence have foreshadowed such contemporary philosophers as Emanuele Severino, Robert Spaemann (with his critique of functionalism), Ernst Behler (with his critique of “infinite perfectibility”), and Peter Koslowski. Outside of Germany or Italy, these philosophers are necessarily almost unknown to the public, especially when they criticize thoroughly the foundations of the dominant ideologies, which is rather frowned upon since the deployment of an underhanded inquisition against the politically incorrect. The cells of the “logocentrist conspiracy” are in place at all the publishers in order to reject translations, keep France in a state of philosophical “minority,” and prevent any effective challenge to the ideology of power.

Vitalistic or “anti-feasibilist” philosophers like Nietzsche, Hamsun, and Lawrence, insist on the ontological nature of human biology and are radically opposed to the nihilistic Western idea of the absolute feasibility of everything, which implies the ontological inexistence of all things, of all realities.

Many of them — certainly Hamsun and Lawrence — bring us back to the eternal present of our bodies, our corporeality (Leiblichkeit). But we can not fabricate a body, despite the wishes reflected in some science fiction (and certain projects from the crazy early years of the Soviet system).

Feasibilism is hubris carried to its height. It leads to restlessness, emptiness, silliness, solipsism, and isolation. From Heidegger to Severino, European philosophy has focused on the disaster of the desacralization of Being and the disenchantment of the world. If the deep and mysterious wellsprings of Earth and man are considered imperfections unworthy of the interest of the theologian or philosopher, if all that is thought abstractly or contrived beyond these (ontological) wellsprings is overvalued, then, indeed, the world loses its sacredness, all value.

Hamsun and Lawrence are writers who make us live with more intensity than those sometimes dry philosophers who deplore the wrong route taken centuries ago by Western philosophy. Heidegger and Severino in philosophy, Hamsun and Lawrence in creative writing aim to restore the sacredness of the natural world and to revalorize the forces that lurk inside man: in this sense, they are ecological thinkers in the deeper meaning of the term.

The oikos and he who works the oikos bear within them the sacred, the mysterious and uncontrollable forces, which are accepted as such, without fatalism and false humility. Hamsun and Lawrence have therefore heralded a “geophilosophical” dimension of thought, which has concerned us throughout this summer school. A succinct summary of their works, therefore, has a place in today’s curriculum.

Lecture at the Fourth Summer School of F.A.C.E., Lombardy, in July 1996.

Source: Vouloir, August 1997; online: http://www.centrostudilaruna.it/paganisme-et-philosophie-de-la-vie-chez-knut-hamsun-et-david-herbert-lawrence.html [2]

 


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2012/07/hamsun-and-lawrence-part-2/