Taking a Break – So Ask Aunt Kali a Question

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5 Responses

  1. Han Fei says:

    Ok I’ll shoot a couple of questions that I long wanted to receive treatment on KT, here goes:

    1. On Morality and Politics: Can history of unfolding events, as well as analysis of political actions, be ever considered from a moral point of view or given a ethical value judgement? And if so, in what way can this be done in order to avoid into moralistic pitfalls such as demonization or deification, that obscure and cloud the sound, reasoned assessment of what is true?

    2. On the nature of Anger and Fear: What exactly does Anger and Fear constitute in the traditional mentality, particularly in the writings of the medieval scholastics? Why is the evangelical imperative of “love thy enemies” and “turn the other cheek” so relevant for this modern age? Does this entail complete passive acceptance even in the face of violence and destruction as some Neo-Pagan critics of Christianity seem to lodge forth? When we feel a strong repulsion against something or someone, is it not true that we fear an aspect of ourselves that we create to fill in the chasm of understanding separating us?

    3. On the nature of the Ethnos, race, identity and natio: What exactly is your concept of say a “Croat, a Serb, a Slav, a European, an Aryan?”. Is nation nothing but a politically determined boundary? Is race a social construct or is it a “biological reality” as some claim? Do races form super-organic unities that have destinies as per Spengler or are they purely spiritual units, devoid of agency or ability to define the actions of individuals that constitute them? Do you think that the European race has a future? And if not, what would mankind’s prospects be like without it?

    4. On the seeming absolute victory of the liberal-oligarchic-scientistic paradigm. The Trump era gave a certain , rather ephemeral hope of respite from the total domination of leftist ideology and methods of social control, at least for a while. Now that he and his movement have pathetically fizzled, and will likely be ruthlessly stamped out in the coming few years, it seems nothing is stopping the agenda of American oligarchs (80% of whom are Jews) doubling down on the drive to impose negrotheism, diversity, mandatory vaccination, lockdowns and transgenderism on society. My question is – do you feel proven wrong in your belief that some far-right opinions would become accepted within the mainstream of public opinion? It seems that the exact opposite is occurring -even the mildest dissident opinion is subject to the worst form of social blacklisting and ostracism. It’s gotten even so absurd that even protests against lockdowns are claimed to be just a curbside away from far-right “Neonazism”.

    5. On the relation between Judaism and the left hand path Occult. Can it be said of the modern Jews that they are continuing the legacy of their Old Testament founders? How appropriate in your view, is the term “Judeo-Christian” or “Abrahamic” faith? Is Christianity a “jewish desert religion” intended to weaken the European spirit? Do you know anything about the strange antinomian current in Jewish culture that seems to go against everything their religion taught (at least in terms of the laws revealed to Moses in the Tanakh), and which became the basis of both Marxism and transgressive ideologies such as feminism, LGBT and transgenderism? What is the relation of these things, if any, in your view to the Kaballah, medieval occult philosophy and the Sabbatai Zevi sect?

    6. Last but most important – is Christianity a Manichean religion? Do we believe that there exists an fundamental “evil” principle which stands in contrast to God and opposes Him on an existential level, as in the case of the Zoroastrian belief in Ahriman vs Ahuramazda? What is the meaning of the statement “as above, so below”? Is it not the case that throughout human history, the greatest evils were done in the name of good, rather than out of a prompt desire to cause malice? Is it not true that sometimes acts that we could consider as evil are necessary to achieve a good result – such as for example in the case of Moses enacting harsh, genocidal judgement not only on the enemies of Israel, but also on those who fell astray within his own group? How would you contrast that to the contemporary policy of universal lockdowns and enforced mask laws, which seek to mathematically reduce the risk of disease transmission at the expense of basic human dignity and freedom out of a desire to save a certain estimated percentage of lives?

    • Ivan Karamazov says:

      Interesting questions, I would like to share my thoughts on some of them.

      1. Our greatest mistake is anachronistically moralizing historical figures or events. Consequently, a figure or event’s moral label will evolve as the popular morality evolves over time.

      Let us use Gandhi as a case study, during his lifetime as the head of the Indian independence movement from the Colonial Raj he was largely viewed as a radical pacifist who opposed armed revolution and dedicated himself to reform Hinduism by reinterpreting classical texts through a humanist lens – largely derived from his profound love of Christianity. The absurdity of the repeated incidents of iconoclasm of monuments commemorating Gandhi that were observed during the worldwide Black Lives Matter protests would be astonishing for the members of the African community that were influenced by Gandhi’s ideas such as Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King Jr, etc. This shows us the extent of the moral shift over the course of the past few decades.

      Another fascinating, I would assert unique aspect of Gandhi’s legacy is the apolitical opposition to his views. I would controversially claim that Gandhi has strong “Traditionalist” (as Guenon defines it) tendencies. Despite seeing the Hindu Caste System as a thorn in the countries progress towards Modernity, he was strongly against it’s abolishment because he was able to foresee the destruction of the Indian Civilization without it. This foresight was prophetic as today India is nothing more than a Third World caricature of the mass consumer society found in the United States of America. The only thing that stands, and I foresee will forever contrast Indian Civilization vs other civilizations is its paganism, which although has been stripped of all its essence somehow still subsists.

      2. I have to preface my answer by saying my knowledge of Christian theology is limited to the Bible, Augustine and Luther as well as the critics of it. To my understanding the imperative of “love thy enemy” and “turn the other cheek” stands on Christ’s promise of divine justice. It is not upon men to deal punishment on the sinners, God will punish them himself. This is a historical turning point, this radical stance allows for an alternative to the Just War Theory. The Early Church during what is known as the Age of Martyrs, in my opinion best represents Jesus’s teachings in practice. The advent of Constantine adopting Christianity as the religion of the State is what brings the end to this Age. From here on after, the persecution of Christians is over amongst the boundaries of the Empire. And the Fate of the religion will eventually be tied to the life and death of it’s civilization, which consequently will cause it to abandon it’s pacifist roots. Today, in Western European countries, non-violence is built-in to the social contract where the State alone has the right to violence. Therefore, Christian virtue is no longer needed, but one can still practice it.

      On Neo-Paganism, if by this you mean the strange reenacting of pre-Christian religions in our day. Though I’ve only seen this over the internet, I get the feeling that this is more akin to playing dress up and reconstructing rituals based on descriptions through media or literature. Their criticism of Christianity is based on the incompatibility with their current moral norms. The form of Neo-Paganism rampant amongst the neo-reactionaries (Alt-Right, Nouvelle Droite, etc.). They’re criticism of Christian morality is to justify their moral relativism to live for transgression. From what I can see, this is nearly exclusive to their anonymous internet communities – Incels, MGTOW, Chan boards, Reddit, etc. Occasionally there’s a member from their community that decides to take action, but this is very rare. Usually if someone is exposed, they claim to be joking or “shit-posting” to save themselves from the embarrassment that would ensue. The interesting aspect of these communities is that they seem to be homogenous, they’re usually composed of either young White or East Asian males. I’ve always had a feeling that these males are being groomed for homosexuality. They’re male worship cults, similar to those of ancient Greece and Rome that engaged in pederasty.

      3. I believe ethnos is real, but it is undefinable. It is difficult to choose whether it is based on race, nation, language, myth/religion or a combination of all of the above. I would go as far as to say that depending on our historical circumstance our understanding of ethnos will change. Perhaps this is controversial, but I would like to assert that for man the myths he clings to matter the most followed by his tribe. However, today religion has been stripped of most of it’s relevance across most of the world. This explains the advent of political tribalism, beyond race and religion we tend to now cling to our political allegiances Conservative, Liberal, Socialist, etc.

      These things cannot be determined emperically, a third or fourth generation German living in the USA has nearly nothing German about him, whereas a third or fourth generation Chinese living in the USA is still able to speak his native tongue and is still attached to Chinese culture through films, music, etc. It’s difficult to determine what causes this? Is the loss of Germaness the consequence of being “White” or is there something in Chinese culture that helped preserve the individual’s attachment to this identity. It’s very difficult, I would say impossible to study this.

      4. In retrospect, Trump’s election was not that surprising. One could formulate a that take us from Pat Buchanan’s attempt to antagonize the White working class against the oligarchy controlling American power and wealth and the American culture of celebrity worship through reality TV in the 1990s to Trump’s rise in the mid-2000s. The point that Branko Malic raised and that I believe is correct, is the Russian influence through alt-media. The unprecedented scale of conspiracy theories that were raised during Obama’s tenure, including Trump’s own birther movement that claimed Obama was not born in the USA, but born in Kenya. This is what will remain in the political sphere and extend beyond America’s borders. One can see how conspiracy theories have become widespread during the pandemic lockdowns. Ironically, large segments of populations in the richest countries in the World, i.e. Scandinavia and North America refuse the vaccine, while those in the poorest countries in the world are desperate to get their hands on it. I know everyone will disagree with me on this, since I’m on the conspiracy theory part of the internet. But the conspiracy theories regarding government crackdown and the “Great Reset” is laughable…. You musn’t believe everything that the internet attempts to portray. I live in one of these rich countries, the population is not complying to the government lockdowns, they haven’t complied with it since the beginning. The poor are forced to work for basic necessities and the rich have a bourgeois ambivalence to it. Take Sweden as an example, here we have a far-Left government that rejects science and refuses to lockdown it’s population and consequently has a ten-fold death rate compared to its neighbors. This is usually an accusation against right wing government such as Trump and Bolsanaro. The rampant expansion of conspiracy theories is indicative of anti-intellectualism and a great loss in literacy in the world.

      5. I never understood why the Jew is a boogeyman for the Westerner. It’s extremely pathetic, and I don’t know if there’s anything remotely similar to it elsewhere in the world.

      Left hand path is a a cloak for neo-nazi sympathizers in the West, Branko made a excellent series on this. I haven’t investigated this for myself, because these are some of the most vile people I’ve heard of. I was exposed to this through a venture in Black Metal as a teenager. Again, these are communities that live for transgression. The historicity for left hand path in traditional religion that they refer to in India – i.e. Kali death cults, divine madness through drug use in Hinduism and Buddhism, etc. – cannot be understood by the modern mind, or at least I personally can’t comprehend. It would have to do with reaching emptiness that is the end goal is some forms of Hinduism and all of Buddhism, here we can see the attraction for the New Age practitioners. They are attempting to dissolve their identity into nothingness to absolve themselves of any remorse, guilt, etc. they would feel from committing these transgressive acts. As far as the relation between Judaism and Left Hand Path, I don’t think there is one (or at least if there was one it was very small). I think you’re confusing medieval Millenarianism with Left Hand Path. Millenarians want to accelerate the end of the World to summon the messiah that will save them. The only Semitic religion that has a relation with LHP is Islam through Sufism, they practice drug use, singing and dancing to attain the state of “divine madness”.

      6. Christianity believes in the duality of Good and Evil. Those who sin and don’t repent are evil. Islam and Judaism is explicit with the following, but my inclination is Christianity is as well: those who don’t accept Jesus as their God and savior are also evil. The reason behind the saying that the greatest evils were done in the name of good, rarely one is willing to admit he is Evil. He needs to justify his actions as Good to go through with them. In his moral relativism and glorification of cruelty, Nietzsche intellectually removes the need to justify ones actions as Good. But I only believe this is to be possible in the intellectual realm, Nietzsche was never able to implement this in his life. I don’t think it’s a coincidence he lost his mind after seeing a horse get whipped, he’s not able to bear suffering of others. His attempt to glorify suffering to get through his illness and his anxiety, didn’t change the fact that cruelty is not something that should be glorified. Sadists that receive pleasure inflicting suffering on others are not aware of the destructive effect this is having on their own lives.

  2. Ivan Karamazov says:

    Hello Branko Malić,

    First off great content. I enjoy your podcasts, especially the ones where you genealogically trace ideas back to their roots.

    A Hegelian belief in progress, an omnipresent Bataillean drive for transgression and the transhumanist quest for immortality truly explain the ailments of postmodernity.

    But I feel you often fall into a highly reactionary trap. Romanticizing antiquity and the Middle Ages is a mistake as is your love of René Guénon and other Tradionationlists. Their popularity today in the New Right is not surprising, especially Julius Evola’s.

    René Guénon’s idea directly contributed to the Islamic Revolution in Iran and continues to influence several reactionary elements in the Islamic world. I disagree with you in saying he’s not a man of his age. He most definitely is. His love of Vedic religion and voluntary conversion to Sufism indicates that he’s no more than a Timely Man as these ideas had become rampant in the European intelligentsia after Schopenhauer and others inaugurated them.

    I also wanted to comment on our differing tastes in philosophy. I love to read Schopenhauer and Nietzsche because I see them grappling with the same truth the Buddha discovered while on the brink of starving himself to death. Which is how to deal with the horrific suffering that many endure in this life rather than escaping into fantastical reverie. Nietzsche’s criticism for the Church should not be taken as a criticism of Jesus, who he labels as the only true Christian for his sacrifice to free men of their grief and resentment.

    Let’s end with one of Nietzsche’s finest quotes against the omnipresent postmodern nihilism of our age.

    “The desert encroaches on all sides. Woe to those who harbour the desert within”.

  3. Mario Varnavides says:

    Question: Is the Metaphysical Doctrine expounded by Guenon truly compatible with Christian Metaphysics?

    Let me try and qualify my question. I am working my way through Guenon’s principle works at the moment and there are a few points of concern on my part as an Orthodox Christian. Guenon has simultaneously made me reembrace my ancestral faith wholeheartedly as he has made me nervous in thinking that by following his doctrines I may be slipping into heresy! I understand that you guys have a nuanced take on Guenon and do not apotheosize him the way some of his followers often do.

    Phillip Sherrard wrote an excellent set of papers on the subject, and his work here is what I have in mind when asking this question. Logic and the Absolute: Platonic and Christian Views, Man and the Prescence of Evil in Christian and Platonic Doctrine, Christianity and the Metaphysics of Logic (all 3 can be found here – https://mikrotheos.blogspot.com/2011/09/blog-post_25.html ). ‘Christianity and the Metaphysics of Logic’ goes into the most depth, and it’s the one I’ll cite in asking this question. Sherrard states that “Of the many factors that can contribute to radical divergencies in the formulation of metaphysical doctrine, one of the most crucial – and one of the least recognized – is the role accorded to logic.” He uses this insight as a starting point to compare the metaphysics of the Vedanta (and Guenon) with that of Christianity. He goes on to state that – “What is at issue is not whether, given its premises, a particular metaphysical doctrine is logical or not. It is rather the role accorded to logic in determining the very premises – the primordial data – of the doctrine itself.”

    The paper goes into quite a bit of depth, and you’ll really have to read it to get where I’m coming from, but Sherrard uses this starting point to conclude that – “the idea of the Trinity as presented by the masters of the Orthodox Christian tradition cuts directly across the correlation between the order of logic and the metaphysical order which for Guenon underpins all metaphysical doctrine worthy of the name.” The fundamental idea of metaphysical doctrine as expounded by Guenon is the idea of the Infinite which is also universal Possibility. For Guenon, the logical statement that determination necessarily involves a limitation may be applied analogically to the metaphysical order, leading to the notion of the All-Possible. He is able to take this notion to the conclusion that the primordial datum is the One, the Nondual-Monad only due to his axiomatic correlation between the logical and the metaphysical order. But from the Orthodox perspective – the primordial datum is the Trinity – and no strict correlation is to be found between the logical and metaphysical order. For the masters of the Orthodox Christian tradition – the idea of the Absolute that constitutes the primordial datum of one’s exegesis, which for Guenon is the All-Possible, can only be established by divine revelation, which does not lead to a Monad but the Trinity. Further quoting Sherrard – “In the Christian perspective the ultimate arbiter of the form which doctrinal exegesis must take is the primordial datum typified by divine revelation, and it is to this that the human intelligence must accommodate itself, even if in so doing it has to violate the laws of logic. In the Guenonian perspective, on the other hand, the ultimate arbiter of the form which doctrinal exegesis must take is not a datum typified by divine revelation but a datum typified by the norms of logical discrimination and demonstration, and it is to this that the human intelligence must accommodate itself.”

    We see here a bottom-up approach (starting with logic) by Guenon and a top-down approach (starting with revelation) within the Orthodox Tradition. Are these two approaches at all compatible? Should I just do what often must be done in philosophy and accept Guenon where I agree with him and refute him where I disagree? How have you reconciled Guenonian doctrines that conflict with your Christian faith?

    I’m currently pursuing this question of whether Guenonian Esoterism is compatible with Orthodoxy: I’ve so far been recommended Sherrard’s work as well as Jean Borella’s ‘Guenonian Esoterism And Christian Mystery’ which looks promising. If you have come across any other resources yourself, recommendations would be much appreciated.

  4. Malić says:

    All interesting questions. You could’ve slip in at least one or two easy ones, but I knew that was a vain hope. This will take some time but I/we will try to elaborate or at least address all of them.

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