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Nihilism and Tradition

Nihilism and Tradition
April 06, 2012, 12:16:26 PM
Many people hear the word "Tradition" and they take it to one of two bad places: (1) warmed over white nationalism or (2) spacey New Age doctrine.

It is neither. Tradition is the idea that (a) an informational order of existence comes before matter; (b) idealism and materialism are joined in this primal state; (c) this leads to a condition of what we might call "monism," in which both matter and information influence each other; (d) this creates a spiritual state that obeys rules identical to those of nature; (e) these rules have been long discovered, enshrined in an unvocalized and unsymbolized truth known as Tradition, and we can inherit this truth through esoteric practice and abandonment of the exoteric, personality-focused, and ego-dramatic modern world.

Here are the essential guides:

* Traditionalism, from American Caesar by William Manchester
* Aldous Huxley - The Perennial Philosophy
* Julius Evola - Men Among the Ruins
* Foundation for Deep Ecology Mission Statement

These represent in total about six hours of reading and should be read in the order presented.

Nihilism is the philosophy that we live in a relative universe and absolute, inherent or universal truths do not exist; they are projections of the human mind. Dualism is also a projection of the human mind, and a desire to keep ourselves separate from the world by constructing a spiritual realm which is opposite to nature. Liberalism is a materialist form of dualism.

* Nihilism, by Vijay Prozak
* What is nihilism?
* Nihil
* Nihil.org

This is not the kiddie "nihilism" that consists of having no values except your own selfish desires. That is another form of consumerism, and is nihilism in name only. That nihilism has a belief which is presumed to be inherent, but which is human constructed, and therefore is as false as any human projection.

Humanity obeys a Bell Curve. 1% or fewer think with strategic logic; 9% can follow general ideas; 90% can do what they're told. Most religions and most non-religious therefore follow the same curve, which is that 90% of them are the "default" human spirituality which amounts to I do whatever I want, you support me, and I'll support you doing whatever you want in theory. It is a socialized form of a lynch mob and represents a post-totalitarian system that destroys all empires. 9% will have a general grasp of religion but will cling to a few core concepts and thus become increasingly disconnected as context changes. 1% of the religious leaders, writers and thinkers will be able to convey a coherent idea that is not limited to a particular place or time.

It is thus not surprising that most "traditionalists" and "nihilists" are confused, to the same percentage as most Christians, Jews and Muslims are.

The origin of all traditionalist philosophies is in India with the Vedas. It is worth familiarizing yourself with the philosophy behind them; most people translate this into a fetishism for details so they have an excuse to miss the big picture.

* Advaita Vedanta

This thread is a good place for useful fact about Traditionalism and Tradition.


Re: Nihilism and Tradition
April 07, 2012, 12:04:14 PM
Just to complete the trifecta (Huxley, Evola, Linkola):

http://www.penttilinkola.com/

A great place for Traditionalist bloggers:

http://www.gornahoor.net/

A great all-around resource:

http://www.primordialtraditions.net/

Re: Nihilism and Tradition
April 07, 2012, 03:33:08 PM
More links

Anamnesis - James Cutsinger's blog
Religio Perennis
Traditional Studies Forum
Forest Poetry

Also this seems like a good place to share this, a poem composed by Shankara, the founder of Advaita Vedanta when he was only 10 years old.  Surely one of the greatest contemplatives the world has seen.

Who is thy wife?  Who is thy son?
The ways of this world are strange indeed.
Whose art thou?  Whence art thou come?
Vast is thy ignorance, my beloved.
Therefore ponder these things and worship the Lord.

Behold the folly of Man:
In childhood busy with his toys,
In youth bewitched by love,
In age bowed down with cares -
And always unmindful of the Lord!
The hours fly, the seasons roll, life ebbs,
But the breeze of hope blows continually in his heart.

Birth brings death, death brings rebirth:
This evil needs no proof.
Where then O Man, is thy happiness?
This life trembles in the balance
Like water on a lotus leaf -
And yet the sage can show us, in an instant
How to bridge this sea of change

When the body is wrinkled, when the hair turns grey,
When the gums are toothless, and the old man's staff
Shakes like a reed beneath his weight,
The cup of his desire is still full.

Thy son may bring thee suffering.
Thy wealth is no assurance of heaven:
Therefore be not vain of thy wealth,
Or of thy family, or of thy youth -
All are fleeting, all must change.
Know this and be free.
Enter the joy of the Lord.

Seek neither peace nor strife
With kith or kin, with friend or foe.
O beloved, if thou wouldst attain freedom,
Be equal unto all.


From Shankara's "Crest Jewel of Discrimination"

Re: Nihilism and Tradition
April 07, 2012, 06:41:47 PM
"And yet the sage can show us, in an instant
How to bridge this sea of change."


Sages don't show anybody anything, unless the anybody cares to be shown.

Superb poem :)



Re: Nihilism and Tradition
April 08, 2012, 05:15:31 PM
Q. Do you believe in God?

A. Yes, to my own satisfaction, though not necessarily to yours. I don’t believe in a sort of super-guy with a human-ish personality (yes, yes, I know that’s the wrong way round: we are supposed to be made in His image) who can be put in a good mood by proper ceremonies, whose mind can be fathomed by reading scripture, and whose help can be enlisted through prayer.

I belong to the 16 percent of Americans who, in the classification used for a recent survey, believe in a “Critical God.” My God is at, or possibly just is, one pole of the great two-poled mystery of everything: the origin of the universe, which passeth all human understanding. He is the Creator. Since He was present in the cosmos then, I assume He is now (or “now,” since He is obviously outside spacetime); and since I can apprehend Him, I assume He is aware of me. The two poles of mystery, the Him and the Me (I mean, the invidual human consciousness, the I, the Me — that’s the second pole) are in contact somehow, and may actually be the same thing, as is hinted at by some by some religious teachers outside Christianity. I am, in short, a Mysterian.

http://www.johnderbyshire.com/Opinions/Religion/faithfaq.html



Re: Nihilism and Tradition
April 18, 2012, 01:10:00 AM
Many people hear the word "Tradition" and they take it to one of two bad places: (1) warmed over white nationalism or (2) spacey New Age doctrine.

It is neither. Tradition is the idea that (a) an informational order of existence comes before matter; (b) idealism and materialism are joined in this primal state; (c) this leads to a condition of what we might call "monism," in which both matter and information influence each other; (d) this creates a spiritual state that obeys rules identical to those of nature; (e) these rules have been long discovered, enshrined in an unvocalized and unsymbolized truth known as Tradition, and we can inherit this truth through esoteric practice and abandonment of the exoteric, personality-focused, and ego-dramatic modern world.

Here are the essential guides:

* Traditionalism, from American Caesar by William Manchester
* Aldous Huxley - The Perennial Philosophy
* Julius Evola - Men Among the Ruins
* Foundation for Deep Ecology Mission Statement

I'm interested. I've read the first three texts you list, but I don't understand how you get (c) from these readings. Evola, for instance, explicitly refers to the supernatural all the time, not some sort of monism. Indeed his criticism of Nietzsche was that the latter had no 'higher' fixed point of reference.

Also, what does it mean to say that "matter and information influence each other"?

Re: Nihilism and Tradition
April 19, 2012, 03:58:23 AM
From a traditionalist perspective, such as the one held by Evola, there is no dualistic separation between the natural and the supernatural, but the natural world is a specific set of possibilities which are manifested within a greater reality.  Anything which transcends what is commonly known as the natural world is hence called supernatural, however this distinction has nothing absolute about it.

Re: Nihilism and Tradition
April 20, 2012, 05:29:28 AM
there is no dualistic separation between the natural and the supernatural, but the natural world is a specific set of possibilities which are manifested within a greater reality. 

That's monism. Some forms of Germanic idealism are also monism.