Learning of Ignorance: Anouncements and Answers to Questions

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8 Responses

  1. Avatar Han Fei says:

    What about Askold and Dir? Vladimir the Great? The bandits on the cross? Even in the modern times we had surprising turns to faith, from people who took a diametrically orthogonal stance throughout their entire lives. John von Neumann and Ernst Junger spring to mind. Were their conversions doubtful? Must one have several generations behind them before becoming Christian? I cannot agree with you although I understand where you are coming from.

    I’ve been listening to Dr. Matthew Raphael Johnston lately. He very much embodies many of the issues you’ve been speaking about for many years. His way of thinking is after all things, thoroughly American, with hints of puritan antinomianism showing through at times. Still I value his zeal, his depth of knowledge and his almost ingenious ability to explain complex concepts that were not so clearly understood to a typical layperson. Most importantly his radicalism can be understood in terms of what it speaks to people living in the Western world and having to deal with the consequences of a society drenched in nominalism to its core, alienated from true principles on every level.

    I think the human mind is limited precisely in that it perceives itself to be essentially unlimited. Even if one subscribes to the notion that the mind is nothing but the consequence of neural activity stemming from the physiological nature of our brain, our own daily experience of living informs us otherwise – there is nothing “natural” about the way we think and perceive the world. We don’t perceive ourselves as disparate grey matter or neural connections or some other part of the physiological activity of our organism, but as ghosts in the shell, as spirits inhabiting a body, of whose workings we are largely oblivious except in times of disease and pain. That is why human beings have such a hard time understanding and accepting the world as it is. God is not like that. God’s mind is at once conscious and deeply natural, in the sense that it is what is real, what is there before you, as opposed to the product of some abstract logical ratiocination. We can feel his presence as we interact with reality, and especially in times when the dice is rolled so to speak, that is to say, in times where our awareness of what is going around us is intensely amplified. What Heidegger perhaps referred to with his “sorgen”. Which is why even atheists scream “Jesus Christ” when they suddenly see a spider crawling up their arm.

    Branco, you have the benefit of living in a country that wasn’t yet touched by the benefits of “progress” and secularization, though I’m sure your local EU paid bureaucrats are very hard at work to raise your next generation in homonormative values of global corporate society. You have lived some time in Ireland I presume, you have seen it all, yet you came back home and that was that. But what about those of us who have no home to return to? Who have no rootedness, no connection with the ancestral land and ethnos, moreover whose places of ethnic origin have had that extirpated from them to such an extent that even returning to them would make us seem foreigners in a strange land?

    That means if the world becomes too much, you can always go back to a local village where the locals can always show you what “normal” society is like, because nothing has changed there, and blood, people, soil and faith are incontrovertible from one another. But keep in mind that this is not a luxury that most people living in the West have.

    Those who understand the truth behind the world, who learned to love it in their hearts, can’t perceive modern society and civilization, especially the kind that prevails in the west with anything but opposition at every level. What the west considers as freedoms we spit upon as shackles. What the west considers are human rights we see as affronts to the dignity of the human persons. What the west considers to be the foundation of its progress and moral values we see as nothing but an inversion, a sick parody of what these terms truly mean. There is no normalcy for us to turn to, there is nowhere for us to run away. The Shire is thousands of miles away and this is Mordor, where only shadows and infernal smokestacks remain. The only thing we can do to protect the memory of our lost homeland is to take up the sword. Not to engage in some stupid criminality mind you, but internally set ourselves apart as opposition to this world, with the full realization of our intent to fight it to the death. I want to emphasize that I’m categorically against any extremist political movement or violent illegal activity whatsoever, but rather a quietist ascetic struggle and separation from the “world” in mind, body and spirit. But this does not entail some rootedness with some real or imagined ethnic origin or culture no matter how much we want it, which is why I am critical of the “white nationalist” movements for trying to forcibly bash a culture and ethnic identity out of a disparate edifice of rotting bones and empty egg shells. What I’m saying is that Western Christians, Muslims living in the west, or anybody who wants to live their life according to genuine traditional principles can’t help but be in a sense a convert, someone who yearns after a centering without possessing it himself. We are the bandits on the cross of our generation who have no existential connection to any higher order or truth other than the examples set forth before us. We see no other genuine outlet for our faith but dialectical struggle. To you Christian tradition may be readily felt as the natural order of things, to many of us, it can’t help but appear as revolutionary.

    That said I wouldn’t mind very much at all if you were to invite MRJ as a guest speaker on your podcast once in a while – both of you are immensely knowledgeable people and it would be interesting to see where your views coincide and where they intersect.

    • Avatar Malić says:

      My friend, I saw what the zeal of which Johnson’s is just a faint, but accurate, echo does. On the one end of the scale it is performing genocide and on the other is suffering it, and then all over again. So, not to go into long discussions – conflating ethnicity and religion or understanding religion as essentially a base for political ideology is a spiritual suicide and spiritual suicides will not have a platform on KT.

      • Avatar Han Fei says:

        Your site is just about the only source on the web I know of that discusses the root causes of the gradually emerging face of technological posthumanism. To understand why this is happening and what it means to us, one has to dig deep into the very epistemology of death that is grounded in the way most of us think and contrast it with its complete opposite complement found in traditional philosophy. The reason why I find MRJ significant is that he’s one of the few people in the West who reaches out to the culturally and ethnically alienated crowd of Americans living in what passes for a society there today. A lot of young people, sick of the kaleidoscope of socially engineered falsehoods imposed as social norms, turn to MGTOW (a homosexual grooming cult) or to the pagan Anti-Christian nativism, precisely because they see in Christianity the roots of this unqualified egalitarianism and universalism that the left draws from. Which of course can be demonstrated to be entirely false in no uncertain terms using the Scriptures, but who’s got the time to study the Bible and the Patristics above Google/wikipedia level? The mainstream churches fail to reach out to the public for this sake, out of fear of negative press publicity (and because many hierarchs are essentially ignorant of the basic tenets of their religion), so this task is left to individual priests and laymen. The traditional missionary message of “would you like to hear the good news about Jesus”simply does not resonate in the ears of the modern public. It sees no relevance in it with their daily lives aside from a childish sentimental escapism fit for weak minded people and women. Therefore any hopeful missionary activity (and I don’t want to bring up the East/West church split here) will have to start with our experience of daily reality, often reflected in the vain surface of politics, and then proceed to its root cause in metaphysics, which in one form or another, underlies everything we sense around us, no matter how much we’ve been hoodwinked to accept the default mechanistic world view. In other words, the modern world is engineered to fail. It’s engineered to be essentially repugnant to the rational mind. The left exists for one purpose alone, and that is in a sense, to parody humanity’s natural state, as a bundle of unrealized desires, emotional outbursts and unfulfilled passions. Soon, people will catch on to the mockery.

        This is also why I don’t hold much hope that the turn in the future will be towards tradition. One does not need to adhere to traditional belief system to accept the inevitability of the modern paradigm’s demise. A basic understanding of biology and a rationally functioning mind will be enough. I foresee a great turn in the near future, towards that which will have the greater pull factor – and that would be the very same technological posthumanism that you and your friends talk about here.

        I don’t believe that Christian traditionalism has any political future in Russia. I don’t think the Muslim world presents a credible threat to the (post)modern ethos either. A certain bastion of it might persist in the social sphere, but it’s hold on society is tenuous. The Russian elite is pushing towards digitization of society at a greater rate than even in the West, and a Russian speaker would easily notice the level of hostility and derision towards the official Orthodox Church that persists in most unregulated internet discussions, which is generally indicative of the attitude held in the public. There might be a very tiny segment of the population that takes it seriously, but the overall world view of the Post Soviet sphere is as thoroughly nominalist, nihilist and technocratically oriented as it is in the West, if not more so. Had MRJ spent a few years in Russia, he might end up deeply disillusioned with it, like so many Americans who look up to Russia as some sort of katechon of a conservatively oriented social order. If anything Russia is probably more “advanced” in decline than America, since it has already underwent civilizational collapse.

        • Avatar Cartman says:

          I listen to MRJ because he covers areas not often dealt with or completely unknown to me. His latest one on rhe Pitesti prison Romania is an example. I know both Branco and Mihai strongly oppose his claim to represent orthodoxy and I always bear that in mind. Nevertheless he has been as much an education for me as this site.

  2. Avatar Simon says:

    In a similar vein, albeit much less sophisticated and much more general than Han Fei’s points, I keep wondering Branko…I think that I am by now acquainted with your views on changing religions like socks and also considering following a different tradition – or, refering specifically to traditional Christianity, a different rite or sub-tradition or whatever you may call it – than the one you were born in to. And it makes sense to me on some level. It seems at first very childish indeed to take up some religious practice from the other end of the world. However, I cannot help but wonder, is there a truth which one can try to draw closer to by way of liturgical practices, prayer etc, in short the religious life? And if there is one, and if there are different traditions/rites that somehow, on some issues that might appear minor at first sight but nevertheless have large implications even for practical life, would it not be necessary to come to a conclusion as to which is more in line with whatever the may truth be? And if you then come to the conclusion that another tradition is closer to the truth and you realize that it also truly reflects positively on your practical life as well, would not sticking with these changinges in your life make sense? I realize the difficulty of determiming (especially by yourself) what counts as a change for the good. But there are some objective moral principles one could adduce. Think of monogamy, bans on slavery etc. I realize this is all on the very basic moral and not on the metaphysical level, but in a truly Christian approach, shouldn’t the two somehow be connected? Also the West in as much it is still Christian became so through conversion (thinking of Clovis, as an example). Or think of the United States. It’s a protestant country and not one with a very ancient tradition. Still, there are some authentic Catholic and Orthodox communities. Would not one who is philosphically minded and wants to lead a religious life do well to convert? Just some loose thoughts…

    Also, I’d love to hear a discussion between you and Mihai on this topic.

    Another example comes to mind as well. I’ve recently come across lecture notes by this Fr. Seraphim Rose, whom I think Mihai referenced once somewhere. He’s making the case (probably well known) that somehow the Latin West steered off into a wrong direction during the middle ages, with an overly rationalized philosophical approach, followed by a too pronounced romanticism of sorts in (religious) art.
    I know that this is a hotly debated issue even amongst scholars, and that there are Orthodox readings of Aquinas as well etc. But in terms of religious practice from plain personal experience, this particular notion resonates strongly with me. Perhaps it’s due to my personal temperament or my lack of philosophical ability, but I thus wonder whether some “re-orientation” concerning which religious tradition to follow might not be appropriate in cases such as these. All with due consideration of the gravity of such decisions of course. There are some very bad examples like Jay Dyer, but then again I know people in the West who consider themselves traditional Catholics and act in a similar vein. Still, I don’t think they would behave any better, were they still Anglicans, Baptists, atheists or your typical modern Tantra yogi.

    • Avatar Malić says:

      There’s a lot to say here and, sure enough, two of us will discuss this topic, probably mid September.

      People do truly convert, there’s no doubt about that. But those are rarely the ones you’ll see on YT. I would never touch upon this subject if it weren’t for the aggressiveness of, mainly American, reformers of traditional Church, both Western and Eastern. The trouble is that they’re so far removed – even physically – from anything resembling the historically unbroken thread of Christianity that they, while nitpicking about theology, continue to behave as dyed in the wool 21th Century ultra liberal and ultra secular people. Too bad that comedy of it is very hard to put in words, because it is so self evident that it doesn’t require demonstration, and what doesn’t require demonstration is undemonstrable but only observable.

      We are all late comers on the historical scene. This means that there’s a baggage we are carrying that one must become aware of. Anyone acting as this baggage doesn’t exist, and as it seems to me in US one can quite easily be fooled into such predicament, is weaving illusions. So if one reads all theology text books and then does a video where he speaks about sacred theologumena while flashing you insides of his living room, without a second thought about meaning of privacy and the nature of media he’s using, then he would have done better if he used those textbooks for toilet paper. At least that would be more respectful. Also, someone born on the Western side of the Atlantic all of the sudden appropriating historical grievances – real or imagined – of peoples he in fact never met and he couldn’t even begin to understand just to fit them into his own world view built solely on reading books is a sort of intellectual invader and thief of other people’s ancestry, without the will to bear the burden of it all. That’s despicable and, in the spiritual sense, perilous for the well being of one’s soul.

  3. Avatar simon says:

    Thank you for replying. I see your point. Technology, more specifically the internet, does really give rise to such strange circumstances in our days, what with ancient traditional principles supposedly laid out publicly by people with no connection whatsoever with them. Still, just looking at numbers I’d say the internet is instrumental in bringing a lot of people to at least consider these notions again, which they might not, were we be living in the 60’s, with lots of stupid television programmes to hypnotize people passively but no possibility to “do the research”. Still, I’d totally agree that just consuming all these facts and becoming very knowledgeable is only of use if it brings you closer to making some changes in your daily life, and the vanity that often comes with this might even be a hindrance here. I’ll ponder it and wait for September 😉

    • Avatar Malić says:

      You’re welcome. I tend to be late with the replies recently due to some external circumstances, but I always take note and will answer eventually.

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