A Modern Mysterium

David Myatt

David Myatt

Editorial Note: The interesting and informative essay presented below is from the Introduction to the “gratis open access” and 87 page book titled A Modern Mysterium: The Enigma of Myatt And The O9A (pdf). The essay summarizes the salient points of the book, containing as the book does essays written in the past few years by various authors, and divided as the book is into three parts.

The first part deals with the O9A; the second details the claim – the allegation – that Myatt is Anton Long; and the third part presents evidence which contradicts or which casts doubt on that allegation. The work therefore allows the reader to form their own opinion of the O9A and of whether or not there is any merit to the claim that the pseudonymous Anton Long was Mr Myatt.


Introduction, from A Modern Mysterium

As the author of one the essays included in A Modern Mysterium: The Enigma of Myatt And The O9A wrote, the question of whether or not Mr David Myatt is or was “Anton Long” is sui generis insofar as the Order of Nine Angles is concerned. Why? Basically for two reasons.

If he was, then, as several O9A supporters have claimed, his somewhat strange multiform, exeatic, and antinomian, life is a real-life example of not only the practical – ‘sinister’ – ethos of the O9A but also of its core praxis termed the Seven Fold Way, which praxis is a decades-long esoteric and exoteric personal quest for Lapis Philosophicus, for Wisdom.

If he was not, then the O9A remains one modern Occult philosophy among many with little to distinguish it other than perhaps its complexity and its Labyrinthos Mythologicus.

If his life is a practical example of the ‘sinister’ ethos of the O9A – as his decades of practical involvement with political and religious extremism, his support for terrorism, his imprisonment for violence, and his criminal years, might seem to suggest – then it is easy to understand why opponents and critics of the O9A continue to denigrate him, for the documented facts about his life are enough to make Howard Levey – the much vaunted ‘Anton LaVey’, often described as “the founder of modern satanism” – seem, by comparison, just a showman, a charlatan, and a wuss. {1}

In addition, Myatt’s documented intellectualism – as in his Greek translations and commentaries, such as of tractates from the Corpus Hermeticum – make both Levey and the equally vaunted Aquino (of Temple of Set fame) seem to be, by comparison, pretentious pseudo-intellectuals. Unlike those individuals, Myatt has “fluency in the classical languages (Greek and Latin), as well as Arabic” {2} and thus can read primary esoteric, classical, and alchemical sources in their original language whereas they, and most if not all of their followers, have to rely on the translations of others, lacking as they do the erudition of Myatt, an erudition evident in his recent book Tu Es Diaboli Ianua. {3}

The sources used, for example, by Howard Levey – evident in his ‘satanic bible’ and his letters – are populist interpretations of the likes of Nietzsche and Ayn Rand, populist books about psychology, with the anonymous polemic titled Might Is Right much plagiarized. Such sources and populist interpretations are also much in evidence in texts written by Aquino, such as The Crystal Tablet of Set, where populist summaries of philosophies and weltanschauungen, ancient and modern, precede a quite minimalist and vague presentation of ‘satanist’ and/or of Temple of Set ideas. Thus, a chapter on ‘ethics’ consists of 12 pages of populist summaries of the likes of Plato, Hegel, Marx, et al, followed by a meagre few paragraphs concerning good and evil in an occult context, and which paragraphs merely present rather cliched personal opinions, such as that “there is thus no easy answer to the question of whether a given magical act is good or evil” and that “it is up to the magician to determine what judgments – by which judges – will be important”. As befits such pseudo-intellectualism, the references in such texts are often to populist works (such as The Social Contract by Robert Ardrey) just as quotations from such people as Plato are invariably in translations, not by Aquino, but by someone else. In contrast, when Myatt writes of ethics and about ‘good and evil’ in chapter IV – Questions of Good, Evil, Honour, and God – of his 2013 book Religion, Empathy, and Pathei-Mathos, he provides passages in Hebrew, Greek, and Arabic, along with his own translations. Similarly, when discussing ethics in his more recent Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos, {4} Myatt provides the relevant Greek texts (such as from the Gospel of John) and his own translations.

It is thus also easy to understand why many supporters of the O9A support the claim that Myatt is Long. For add to his documented exeatic life, to his intellectualism, the fact that he is regarded by academics as “England’s principal proponent of contemporary neo-Nazi ideology and theoretician of revolution” and you have a person who most definitely does seem to fit the profile of what an ONA person is or should be, with his post-2012 ‘philosophy of pathei mathos’ and recent books such as Tu Es Diaboli Ianua and Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos understood as the musings of someone who, after decades of peregrinations and scholarly study, has found Lapis Philosophicus and who is “living the final apprehension”, with that philosophy, such books, and ‘the last writings of Anton Long’ {5} serving

“to illuminate the O9A for what it is and always has been, beyond the rhetoric, beyond the polemics, beyond its Labyrinthos Mythologicus, and beyond the assumptions made by others. That is, it is a living hereditary, evolving, repository of esoteric knowledge; part of which accumulated and accumulating knowledge is a scholarly perspective on ancient hermeticism; another part of which is a practical modern means (for those who might be interested) to achieve Adeptship and beyond; another part of which knowledge concerns a New Aeon and the logos necessary to bring that Aeon into being. Other parts of which are Esoteric Chant and Aeonics; and so on. In addition, this body of esoteric knowledge now also contains the insights of someone who has ventured beyond The Abyss, and which particular insights return us to that pagan knowledge, that ancient wisdom, of the Rounwytha way, which is, for those who follow it, the way of a certain type of knowing and of a certain type of living.” {6}

All of which makes it unnecessary for anyone – by they O9A or otherwise – to ‘hype’ Mr Myatt, for just presenting the documented facts about his life, and drawing attention to his intellectualism, his erudition, is sufficient. That life, that intellectualism, ‘the last writings of Anton Long’, Myatt’s ‘philosophy of pathei mathos’ (understood as a modern manifestation of the O9A way of the Rounwytha) and books such as Tu Es Diaboli Ianua and Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos tell the necessary story.

Which story is of a modern Magus; of someone who has spent all of his adult life – half a century – on an esoteric and an exoteric quest. Since such a quest exemplifies what the search for Lapis Philosophicus, for Gnosis, for Wisdom, is all about it is in the final analysis irrelevant if Myatt was or was not the pseudonymous Anton Long. For such a personal quest is the essence of all genuine Occult philosophies and praxises, beyond the labels – the denotata – we or others assign to them, be such labels Left Hand Path, Right Hand Path, Satanist, or O9A.

Which, at least to me and some others, makes Myatt someone to be admired and – perhaps – emulated by those O9A or otherwise.

June Boyle

{1} Myatt, for example, has convictions and imprisonment for violence, in 1972, after leading a gang of skinheads in a ‘paki-bashing’ incident: documented in court proceedings, prison records, and newspapers. A conviction for leading a gang of thieves in 1974 and being a fence: documented in court proceedings, in police records/interviews, in mainstream newspaper reports.

He was arrested in 1998 for conspiracy to murder: documented in police records (Scotland Yard, the operation was code-named Periphery), documented in custody records at Malvern and Charing Cross police stations. He founded and led the political wing of Combat 18, the NSM, a fact documented by several academics and by mainstream newspaper reports.

He publicly supported bin Laden and the Taliban before and after 9/11: documented by several academics, by proceedings of NATO conferences, by newspaper reports. He travelled to Arab countries and – when it was unpopular and very dangerous to do so, such as after 9/11 – incited Jihad: documented by several academics. His writings justifying suicide attacks were used by ‘terrorist’ groups such as Hamas: documented by several academics, and by proceedings of NATO conferences.

{2} Connell Monette. Mysticism in the 21st Century, Sirius Academic Press, 2013. p.87.

{3} David Myatt. Tu Es Diaboli Ianua: Christianity, The Johannine Weltanschauung, And Presencing The Numinous. 2017. ISBN 978-1982010935.

{4} David Myatt. Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos. 2017. ISBN 978-1979599023.

{5} See Appendix II of the book.

{6} The quotation is from chapter I of Part Two of the book, which chapter is titled David Myatt, The Septenary Anados, And The Quest For Lapis Philosophicus.