Absque Vita Tali

David Myatt

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Absque Vita Tali,
Verbum Quoad Litteram Est Mortuum

Outside, rain and the un-warm wind of December, with no Sun – no Summer – to warm and bring that joy of wakeing to see the sky deep full of blue so that one smiling is eager still, as youth again, to egress forth toward the sea.

Now I in a rainy month – and approaching my three score and ten – possess both an internal and an external knowing of just what the passing of earthly Time doth to we fragile biological beings, for:

I am an old man,
A dull head among windy spaces

And yet the flow of Life flows on, here – there – when the outer husk, failing, dies, so that I reminded of what I pastly wrote to a friend, having now been so gifted with the gifts of one more solar year:

“What, therefore, remains? What is there now, and what has there been? One genesis, and one ending, of one nexion whose perception by almost all others is now of one who lived and who wrote ἐξ αἰνιγμάτων.”

τό θ᾽ ὑπέργηρων φυλλάδος ἤδηκατακαρφομένης τρίποδας μὲν ὁδοὺς
στείχει, παιδὸς δ᾽ οὐδὲν ἀρείων
ὄναρ ἡμερόφαντον ἀλαίνει. [1]

For there does seem much worth now, a special new species of slowly-joy, to so and so shadowly wander, supported by a stick, since Time itself, unmeasured, stills and one is able to feel the numinous as if flows through, with, such presencings of Life as one meets, greets, passes. As when that other day I walked to wander – never now far from home – and that young unknown stocky man, girlfriend beside and smiling, bade me compliments of the season. Such life there, such potential there, in both, and one was glad to be alive, still, even if no Sun broke forth in warmth. Or glad as when in slow walk in woods nearby wind shook trees to breathe again one’s wordless connexion with this living Earth, so strong so strong it became as if one could go back there to where one’s loved ones lived, unbroken by such selfish deeds as might have saved them or at least made happier their so short time on Earth. And I was so happy, so happy there remembering those good times, shared, with them.

There has thus grown, within because of age, both a new knowing of how needful is our need for compassion and of a new if sad perception: of just how many many centuries we forgetful biological beings may need. But all I can do now is walk, remembering, hoping: my words, my dreams, a bridge.

For I am no enigma, my life bared by writings such as this. For words live on to tell just one more story, of redemption. But who will read them when life lives within this husk no more?

David Myatt
December 2011

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[1] Aeschylus, Agamemnon, 79-82:

Thus, he of great Age, his foliage drying up
And no stronger than a child, with three feet to guide him on his travels,
Wanders – appearing a shadow in the light of day.

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Article Source:
Meditations on Extremism, Remorse, and The Numinosity of Love (pdf)

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David Myatt, National Socialism, And The O9A

David Myatt

David Myatt, National Socialism, And The Order Of Nine Angles

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Part One
Is David Myatt Still A Neo-Nazi?

While the question “is David Myatt still a neo-nazi” has been asked many times over the past six or seven years – with academics such as Senholt seeming to answer in the affirmative [1] and with Myatt himself consistently denying that he is – many items written by Myatt since 2010, and his reclusive lifestyle since 2010, seem to indicate that he is no longer a neo-nazi.

These items include his 2013 book about extremism titled Understanding and Rejecting Extremism: A Very Strange Peregrination; his autobiography Myngath; essays such as Persecution And War mentioned below in Part Two, as well as the articles he published in 2012 which were directly critical of National Socialism, the Third Reich, and Adolf Hitler [2] and which criticism led to one liberal and pro-Zionist website to describe Myatt as “having a change of heart” [3].

In one of those critical essays, Hitler, National-Socialism, and Politics – A Personal Reappraisal, he writes:

“There is thus, based on applying the moral criteria of The Numinous Way, a complete rejection by me of National-Socialism – of whatever kind – and an understanding of Hitler as a flawed individual who caused great suffering and whose actions and policies where dishonourable and immoral.”

In his essay Pathei-Mathos, Genesis of My Unknowing, quoted in the aforementioned book, he writes:

“For what I painfully, slowly, came to understand, via pathei-mathos, was the importance – the human necessity, the virtue – of love, and how love expresses or can express the numinous in the most sublime, the most human, way. Of how extremism (of whatever political or religious or ideological kind) places some abstraction, some ideation, some notion of duty to some ideation, before a personal love, before a knowing and an appreciation of the numinous. Thus does extremism – usurping such humanizing personal love – replace human love with an extreme, an unbalanced, an intemperate, passion for something abstract: some ideation, some ideal, some dogma, some ‘victory’, some-thing always supra-personal and always destructive of personal happiness, personal dreams, personal hopes; and always manifesting an impersonal harshness: the harshness of hatred, intolerance, certitude-of-knowing, unfairness, violence, prejudice.

Thus, instead of a natural and a human concern with what is local, personal and personally known, extremism breeds a desire to harshly interfere in the lives of others – personally unknown and personally distant – on the basis of such a hubriatic certitude-of-knowing that strife and suffering are inevitable. For there is in all extremists that stark lack of personal humility, that unbalance, that occurs when – as in all extremisms – what is masculous is emphasized and idealized and glorified to the detriment (internal, and external) of what is muliebral.” [4]

It is interesting and perhaps indicative that such forthright statements by him, such essays and books of his written since 2012, have been ignored by those who continue to propagate the claim that Myatt is still a neo-nazi and involved with the Occult movement the Order of Nine Angles (O9A, ONA). [5]

Indicative because of the propagandistic nature of the claim for which no facts which have probative value – no evidence – is ever presented, and interesting because for those propagandists and the many others who have not taken the trouble to read Myatt’s extensive post-2012 writings the question of whether Myatt is still a neo-nazi is inseparably bound up with two questions about the O9A.

Which two questions are: (1) is the O9A a neo-nazi Occult movement?, and (2) is David Myatt really Anton Long, founder of the O9A, author of over 95% of its texts, creator of its ‘Seven Fold Way’ and who, as Grand Master, still operates behind the scenes despite having (apparently) retired?

The propagandists – such as those in the special interest political pressure group named Hope Not Hate (HnH) which is adept at manufacturing and spreading “fake news” (that is, propaganda and disinformation) about those they consider are their enemies [6] – claim that the O9A is neo-nazi, that Myatt is Anton Long and is still active in the O9A. Yet such purveyors of propaganda and disinformation never provide any evidence for their claims with their “fake news” replete with factual errors, revealing of a lack of detailed research or often a lack of any research at all, and often based on logical fallacies such as consensus gentium, the fallacy of incomplete evidence, argumentum ad populum, argumentum ad verecundiam, secundum quid et simpliciter, and of course on argumentum ad hominem.

Hence why for example in the five pages devoted to the O9A and to Myatt in the recent 2019 report issued by HnH, there are at least fourteen factual errors [6], no evidence for their disinformation that Myatt is Anton Long and still a neo-nazi, and a complete lack of understanding of, a lack of research into, the nature of the O9A based as their propagandistic and often sensationalist claims about the O9A are on the fallacy of incomplete evidence, consensus gentium, and secundum quid et simpliciter.

This lack of research into the O9A and the committal of such fallacies are obvious in the fact that “insight roles” and “culling” and Occult ceremonies are not considered in that report in the context of the individualistic and decades-long Seven Fold Way with its aim of attaining Lapis Philosophicus. Which context reveals “insight roles” and “culling” and Occult ceremonies in texts such as the Black Book of Satan occupy only around a year forming as they do some of the tasks of the External Adept, the third stage of the Seven Fold Way. [7]

The lack of research and the committal of such fallacies by propagandists and many others are also obvious in the fact that, as a study of the O9A corpus reveals [8], for the O9A exoteric ideas such as neo-nazism and satanism are considered as merely useful causal forms, as abstractions, with a practical involvement with such causal forms forming just a small part of the possible learning experiences that an External Adept may find useful.

For correctly understood, via a thorough study of the O9A corpus, the O9A is neither satanist nor neo-nazi and as a practical movement in the real world is based more on anarchy than on anything else. [9]

To conclude, my research into the O9A and into the life and the post-2012 writings of David Myatt convinces me that he is not now a neo-nazi, not involved with the O9A, with the O9A itself being an anarchic Occult movement which has no leader and which espouses an individualistic and anarchic praxis.

Morena Kapiris
2016 ev
Revised 2019 ev

Notes

The web links below were available as of March 2019 ev

[1] Senholt, Jacob. Secret Identities in The Sinister Tradition, in Per Faxneld and Jesper Petersen (eds), The Devil’s Party: Satanism in Modernity. Oxford University Press, 2012.
           In the Logical Fallacy of Incomplete Evidence – A Case Study section of his 2012 text A Matter of Honour, Myatt effectively demolishes Senholt’s claims about involvement with the O9A and about him being Anton Long. Myatt’s text is available from https://davidmyatt.files.wordpress.com/2018/08/a-matter-of-honour.pdf
[2] https://davidmyatt.files.wordpress.com/2019/03/myatt-problems-ns-v3a.pdf
[3] http://hurryupharry.org/2012/12/11/david-myatt-has-a-change-of-heart/
[4] http://www.davidmyatt.info/genesis-of-my-unknowing.html
[5] The O9A has been described by Professor Connell Monette as “a movement, a subculture or perhaps metaculture that its adherents choose to embody or identify with.” Mysticism in the 21st Century. 2013. Sirius Academic Press.
[6] https://regardingdavidmyatt.wordpress.com/2019/03/04/twelve-basic-errors/
[7] https://omega9alpha.files.wordpress.com/2017/03/o9a-7fw-practical-v3.pdf
[8] The O9A corpus, written between the 1970s and 2019 by “Anton Long” and his Occult students (the Inner ONA) amounts to between 4,000 and 10,000 pages depending on which items – such as the Deofel Quartet, other Occult novels, and more recent texts, are included. For an overview of the corpus see (i) https://omega9alpha.wordpress.com/2019/01/13/recommended-reading-list/ and (ii) https://omega9alpha.wordpress.com/2019/03/09/a-compilation-of-some-recent-o9a-texts/
[9] http://www.o9a.org/o9a-and-anarchy/

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Part Two
The Myattian Saga Continues

In the decades long and on-going saga of whether or not David Myatt is or was Anton Long of Order of Nine Angles (ONA, O9A) fame {1} some of Mr Myatt’s latest writings are intriguing and seem to provide more proof that, as he has maintained all along, he is not and was not Anton Long, founder of the O9A, author of most of its vast Occult corpus, and “paramount to the whole creation and existence of the ONA.” {2}

These latest writings of his include the two part In Defence Of The Catholic Church {3} and his Persecution And War {4}. His In Defence Of The Catholic Church as the title indicates is a defence of the Catholic Church, and in particular in respect of allegations of sexual abuse by priests and monks. The article is based on his personal experience of the Catholic religion from boy to Catholic monk. His Persecution And War is a fascinating, if somewhat annoyingly brief, autobiographical account of some of his experiences as a visiting Catholic in Northern Ireland during The Troubles and of how those experiences helped him when he came to develop his philosophy of pathei mathos.

In part one of In Defence Of The Catholic Church he has many positive things to say about the Catholic Church. Mentioning some medieval liturgical music he writes that he is

“so reminded how the Roman Catholic Church inspired such numinosity, such beauty, century following century. For it is as if such music presenced the Divine to thus remind us, we fallible error-prone mortals, of another realm beyond the material and beyond our own mortal desires.”

He goes on to write that he

“from personal experience appreciate[s] that for all its many faults – recent and otherwise – and despite my disagreement regarding some of its teachings it still on balance does, at least in my fallible opinion, presence – as it has for centuries presenced – aspects of the numinous and which presencing has over centuries, again in my fallible opinion, had a beneficial affect on many human beings.”

He then recounts a journey of his in Africa, commenting about the Christian folk he met that he

“admired them and respected their belief and understood what that faith seemed to have given them. Who was – who am – I to try and preach to them, to judge them and that faith? I was – I am – just one fallible human being who believes he may have some personal and fallible answers to certain questions; just one person among billions aware of his past arrogance and his suffering-causing mistakes.”

As for the allegations of sexual abuse made against priests and monks he is adamant, based on his personal experiences as a Catholic and especially as a Catholic monk, that “they, and the few others like them over the years, were the exception” and that those who believe otherwise commit the logical fallacy of a dicto secundum quid ad dictum simpliciter, which basically is to use particular individual cases to form a general rule to then use that rule to describe, and thence to blame, or to castigate, or to defame a whole group. {5}

Such statements by Myatt regarding Catholicism, and such personal feelings as he describes, are not those of a Satanist and not those of someone who associating with the O9A is expected to despise both Christianity in all its forms and Christians themselves. {6}

Part two of his In Defence Of The Catholic Church presents a theological defence of the actions, the response, of the Catholic hierarchy when cases of sexual abuse by priests and monks were made known to them. This is the more interesting part of his article since this theological defence is not only clearly explained by Myatt but also has seldom featured in all the media and other criticism of the response of the Catholic hierarchy.

Myatt’s argument is that in regard to the individuals involved, the Catholic church has a higher spiritual responsibility. Which is to consider and take care of their eternal souls and thus apply the Catholic “sacrament of penance and reconciliation” to them.

Naturally in the modern world of the capitalist West with its secular governments and secular laws this theological view is not popular. Nor a view which many would even consider or understand. Which explains why some States in America, and governments in other lands, have tried to introduce secular laws to break such things as the Catholic “seal of the confessional”. {7}

That Myatt presents and defends a Christian theological argument is not something a Satanist nor someone associating with the O9A would do.

In his Persecution And War Myatt uses his “Catholic remembering” – of Catholic civilians killed by the British army in Northern Ireland – to make a point about prejudice, intolerance, and propaganda, concluding that

“the real tragedy is that events similar to those of my very personal remembering have occurred on a vaster scale millennia after millennia and are still occurring, again on a vaster scale and world-wide, despite us having access to the wisdom of the past.”

These again are not the kind of things a Satanist nor someone associating with the O9A would write.

One final point deserves mentioning. The erudite nature of the articles. There are, as to be expected with Myatt, quotations from the ancient Greek together with his own translations, quotations in Old English and Latin as well as detailed explanations of terms such as “sin” in relation to the New Testament with relevant quotations from the Greek New Testament again with his own translations.

Conclusion

It is conceivable that believers in the Myatt=Long theory, who exist both outside and within the O9A and who seem intent on demonizing Myatt if for different reasons, will in support of that theory claim that someone who was O9A might be devious enough – à la O9A year long Insight Roles – to pretend to write or act as someone who has a diametrically opposite personal character or life to his or her own. Hence someone O9A dialectically praising Christianity.

The fundamental flaw to such a claim in respect of Myatt is that he has been writing similar and consistent things about Christianity, Catholicism, and about prejudice and intolerance since at least 2011, and since then has also penned voluminous other writings about his philosophy of pathei mathos, about compassion, humility, and extremism which echo the sentiments found in the recent writings we have been discussing.

As someone wrote in this regard in 2016,

“All these sentiments, these feelings, are so consistent over so many years, chime so well with his poetry, with the feelings that run through his pre-2009 letters, with his autobiography Myngath, and with post-2011 writings about his philosophy of pathei-mathos, that it seems inconceivable to me that they are artful constructions – fakes – by someone else (or some others) or the product of some ‘sinister trickster’ who has consciously adopted a certain persona in order to try and fool people. Also, what they express is a mysticism, a reverence for and an appreciation of the numinous, so at odds with the ethos and the practice of Satanism – of whatever variety – that it is also inconceivable that they were written by a Satanist or even by a practising Occultist.” {8}

One has for instance only to read essays by Myatt such as his Numinous Expiation {9} and Catholic Still In Spirit? {10} and his book Understanding and Rejecting Extremism {11} to appreciate this.

These latest writings therefore on balance provide more proof that Myatt is not and was not Anton Long. As I wrote in my article Demonizing Mr Myatt,

“The demonizers of Myatt have ignored such things because those things reveal a very different Myatt. One at odds with the ‘sinister’ image of him they have all in their own way strived to manufacture and have propagated in pursuit of their aims. For the image of Myatt that emerges from his poetry and his post 2011 writings is of a reclusive man who regrets his extremist past, who values virtues such as empathy and compassion.” {12}

Rachael Stirling
October 2018
v.1.03

{1} The book published earlier this year titled A Modern Mysterium: The Enigma of Myatt And The O9A is a detailed and neutral study of the controversy, including both articles which support the Myatt=Long idea and articles which provide evidence to the contrary, allowing readers to arrive at their own conclusion. The book is available as a gratis open access (pdf) file from https://regardingdavidmyatt.wordpress.com/myattian-mystery/

See also The Real Anton Long? available at https://regardingdavidmyatt.files.wordpress.com/2018/11/real-anton-long-v1.pdf

{2} Jacob C. Senholt. The Sinister Tradition. A paper presented at the international conference Satanism in the Modern World, Trondheim, 19-20th of November 2009.

{3} The two-part article is available from https://davidmyatt.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/in-defence-rc-1.pdf

Update, 2019: Included in the pdf document is Myatt’s Two Metaphysical Contradictions Of The Modern West in which he comments on the letter written by Pope Francis in January 2019 and sent the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

{4} https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/2018/09/09/persecution-and-war/

{5} In naming the fallacy a dicto secundum quid ad dictum simpliciter Myatt pedantically uses the complete Latin phrase rather than the shortened version secundum quid et simpliciter.

{6} Anti-Christian sentiments abound in fundamental O9A texts such as The Black Book of Satan and in the three volumes of Hostia: Secret Teachings Of The ONA.

{7} See for example The Wall Street Journal, October 2, 2018. New Laws Require Priests to Break the Seal of Confession.

{8} JR Wright. The Strange Life Of David Myatt. The essay is included in A Modern Mysterium: The Enigma of Myatt And The O9A.

{9} https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/numinous-expiation/

{10} https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/numinous-expiation/a-catholic-still-in-spirit/

{11} Available from https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/rejecting-extremism/

{12} The article is included in A Modern Mysterium: The Enigma of Myatt And The O9A.

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A pdf version of the above text is available at:
https://regardingdavidmyatt.files.wordpress.com/2019/03/myatt-still-a-neo-nazi-v2b.pdf

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Myatt And Fringe Fluidity

David Myatt

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In an academic article published in January 2019 {1} authors Daveed Gartenstein-Ross and Madeleine Blackman argue that what they term fringe fluidity “is not just a process of inter-cultural borrowing and sharing of animosities that facilitate a congruence of extremist perspectives between neo-Nazi and extremist Islamist elements. Rather, fringe fluidity should be regarded as its own individual-level pathway into Islamist militancy.”

They write:

“One the most famous examples of fringe fluidity is David Myatt, a founder of the British National Socialist Movement. Myatt converted to Islam in 1998.”

They proceed to provide a reasonably balanced account of Myatt’s journey from Neo-Nazi to Muslim, ending their section on Myatt by writing

“Myatt eventually came to reject both Islam and extremism in favor of a new philosophical outlook that he dubbed the Way of Pathei-Mathos. Despite this later conversion, Myatt provides an example of how one’s commitment to anti-Semitism can bridge the ideological divide between Nazism and jihadism.”

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{1} Daveed Gartenstein-Ross & Madeleine Blackman (2019). Fluidity of the Fringes: Prior Extremist Involvement as a Radicalization Pathway. Studies in Conflict & Terrorism. Taylor & Francis. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1057610X.2018.1531545

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A Grubby Little Propagandist

Nick Lowles

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Nick Lowles – born 1968, aka Nicholas Lloyd Lowles, and leader of the leftist group Hate Not Hope {1} financed by Zionist billionaire George Soros – has used his Media connections and those of his mentor Soros to call for an immediate police investigation into the anti-Zionist Order of Nine Angles and into David Myatt’s role in it.

Lowles told reporters that “the Order of Nine Angles is the world’s most extreme satanist group and its key objective is to cause the overthrow of society”.

He went on to repeat his propaganda lies about the O9A and to repeat his libellous allegation that Myatt is “a key figure in the Order of Nine Angles” for which allegation he did not provide, and never has provided, any evidence whatsoever, ignoring as he does in his propaganda rants Myatt’s extensive post-2011 writings about his mystic Numinous Way (the philosophy of pathei-mathos) and about Myatt’s rejection of extremism, a rejection explained in Myatt’s books such as Understanding And Rejecting Extremism {2} and in his autobiography Myngath {3}.

That chameleon Lowles has an abiding hatred of Myatt, dating from the 1990s, is well-known in fascist circles with Lowles sometimes being referred to as “the poison dwarf”.

Yet in Aeonic terms Myatt may well have the last laugh. For the following quotation and comment was posted on an internet forum devoted to the views and life-stories of women on the same day that motor-mouth Lowles was yet again busy spreading his grubby hateful lies about Myatt to any reporters who would listen.

[begin quote]

“The uncomfortable truth is that we, we men, are and have been the ones causing, needing, participating in, wars and conflicts. We – not women – are the cause of most of the suffering, death, destruction, hate, violence, brutality, and killing, that has occurred and which is still occurring, thousand year upon thousand year; just as we are the ones who seek to be – or who often need to be – prideful and ‘in control’; and the ones who through greed or alleged need or because of some ideation have saught to exploit not only other human beings but the Earth itself. We are also masters of deception; of the lie. Cunning with our excuses, cunning in persuasion, and skilled at inciting hatred and violence. And yet we men have also shown ourselves to be, over thousands of years, valourous; capable of noble, selfless, deeds. Capable of doing what is fair and restraining ourselves from doing what is unethical. Capable of a great and a gentle love. This paradoxy continues to perplex me.” {4}

Pretty inspiring words coming from a former extremist.

[end quote]

For history teaches us that propaganda lies, over centuries, seldom if ever endure.

RDM Crew
February 2019

{1} https://regardingdavidmyatt.wordpress.com/2019/02/21/full-of-hate-not-hope/
{2} ISBN-13: 978-1484854266
{3} ISBN-13: 978-1484110744
{4} https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/2013/02/19/blue-reflected-starlight/


Practical Guide To Aryan Revolution

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David Myatt

Under the headline Online Neo-Nazis Are Increasingly Embracing Terror Tactics, the youth-orientated and popular Vice media website on January 28th 2019 published an article about a new “fascist” internet forum, which article happened to mention what is perhaps Myatt’s most notorious written work:

“Recently, a condensed copy of David Myatt’s Practical Guide to Aryan Revolution was added to the site – the text has been cited as being a direct influence in numerous right-wing terrorist attacks over in the past 20 years.”

However, the condensed version – the only version available on the internet – omits some of the practical chapters such as those titled “Racial War” and “Rules Of Engagement”.

According to one source the complete version provides “a detailed step-by-step guide for terrorist insurrection with advice on assassination targets, rationale for bombing and sabotage campaigns, and rules of engagement.” {1}

According to another source, a copy of the complete guide was discovered by police in the flat of David Copeland, the London nail-bomber {2}.

Other sources state that the guide may have influenced the National Socialist Underground {3}{4}, a German group responsible for ten murders, several bank robberies, and several bomb attacks.

Possession, and distribution, of the complete guide is a criminal offence in Britain, Germany, France, and many other European countries.

RDM Crew
January 2019

{1} Michael Whine. Cyberspace: A New Medium for Communication, Command and Control by Extremists, Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, Volume 22, Issue 3. Taylor & Francis. 1999.

{2} Nigel Copsey & Matthew Worley. Tomorrow Belongs to Us: The British Far Right since 1967. Routledge, 2017, p.156.

{3} Daniel Koehler. The German National Socialist Underground, in Jackson, Paul and Shekhovtsov, Anton (editors), The Post-War Anglo-American Far Right: A Special Relationship of Hate. Palgrave Macmillan, 2014. pp. 134-135.

{4} Ikke så ensomme ulver. https://web.archive.org/web/20150923015005/http://www.nrk.no/ytring/ikke-sa-ensomme-ulver-1.11026908

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David Myatt: Forty Years Of Learning

David Myatt

David Myatt

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Q. How would you summarize what you have learnt from your forty years as an activist?

One of the conclusions of such retrospection as I have undertaken in the past few years is of understanding the deeds and the intolerant striving of my extremist decades as reprehensible. Another conclusion concerns my own reprehensible character. Yet another concerns my hubris, or perhaps more correctly my stupidity born of arrogance and fanaticism resulting in a failure, a refusal, to learn from our thousands of years old human culture of pathei-mathos. For such a learning would have placed me and my extremism – me as a masculous talking-mammal – in a supra-personal context, providing a knowledge of those deeds and that striving as having the opposite effect of what I intended or arrogantly believed they would achieve, and of only inflicting, causing, more and more unnecessary suffering.

This supra-personal context is the Cosmic Perspective: of the reality of our individual selves as but one fragile mortal short-lived biological life-form on one planet orbiting one star in one galaxy in a Cosmos of billions of galaxies; of our nations, our national cultures – and everything we manufacture or bring-into-being or presence, from ideas to ideologies to religions to cities to industries to products to archetypes – being not only by their φύσις subject to change and transmutation but also having a certain limited life span, be such in terms of years, decades, centuries, or millennia; of how our pride in our achievements or in our presencings, individual or collective – and such achievements/presencings themselves – should be considered in the context of the possibility of sentient life, some probably more advanced than us, on other planets in our own galaxy and in the billions of galaxies in the Cosmos; of how all life on our own planet, just like ourselves, is fragile, changing, and subject to extinction; and of how what we, as individuals, do or do not do affects or can affect other living beings.

For the Cosmic Perspective is an empathic awareness of not only our place in the Cosmos but also of the affective and acausal connexions that bind all life, on this planet and elsewhere in the Cosmos, and be such life sentient or otherwise. And it is this empathic awareness which, according to my mutable understanding, can provide us with a personal appreciation of the numinous sans the abstractions, the theology, the cosmogony, the dogma, and sans the God/gods, of an organized religion.

My hubriatic error in those extremist decades was essentially two-fold: (i) to aspire to bring-into-being some-thing that would not and could not, in centennial terms (let alone in millennial or cosmic terms) endure; and (ii) to use violence and incite hatred, intolerance, and killing, in order to try and presence that causal some-thing. My perspective, for example, during my neo-nazi decades was very limited, sometimes egoistical. Egoistical in that I enjoyed the striving, the conflict, the incitement, the excitement, and even the violence. Limited, in that my foreseeing was of the next meeting, the next fight, the next demonstration, the next piece of propaganda to produce, my next speech, and of the victory I and others dreamed of or believed in; a victory that would be at most a decade or two ahead.

Of course, I believed that what we or others after us might bring-into-being would endure, most probably at the cost of further conflict; and endure for decades, possibly a century or more. But the reality always was of me and my kind striving to stop or somehow try to control, to shape, the natural flux of change; to preserve, whatever the cost, what we or others after us might bring-into-being.

For we believed we would or could do what no one in human history had been able to do: make our presencings immortal, or at least immune to the natural cycle of birth-life-decay-death. A natural cycle so evident in the rise, the flourishing, the decline, the decay, the death, of empire after empire; national culture after national culture; city after city; language after language; and of a people of a particular size and in a particular area naturally changing, moving, emigrating, immigrating, and thus naturally melding with others. In brief, we (with our simple causal-only perception) hubristically believed or felt that we could, and would, not only master and control Nature and the very forces of the Cosmos but also that our interventions would endure far beyond our own lives. In retrospection, this was fantasy, with the rise and fall and destruction of The Third Reich being just one of the many examples from reality that should have informed us about that fantasy.

           In contrast, my understanding now is that the Cosmic Perspective reveals a particular truth not only about the Anthropocene (and thus about our φύσις as human beings) but also about how sustainable millennial change has occurred and can occur. Which change is via the progression, the evolution – the development of the faculties and the consciousness – of individuals individually. This is the interior, the a-causal, change of individuals wrought by a scholarly learning of and from our thousands of years old human culture of pathei-mathos, by our own pathei-mathos, and by that personal appreciation of the numinous that both the Cosmic Perspective and the muliebral virtues incline us toward.

This aeonic change voids what we now describe by the terms politics and religion and direct social activism of the violent type. There is thus a shift from identifying with the communal, the collective – from identifying with a particular contemporary or a past society or some particular national culture or some particular causal form such as a State or nation or empire or some -ism or some -ology – toward that-which has endured over centuries and millennia: our human culture of pathei-mathos.

For the human culture of pathei-mathos records and transmits, in various ways, the pathei-mathos of individuals over thousands of years, manifest as this sustainable millennial culture is in literature, poetry, memoirs, aural stories, in non-verbal mediums such as music and Art, and in the experiences – written, recorded, and aural – of those who over the centuries have appreciated the numinous, and those who endured suffering, conflict, disaster, tragedy, and war, and who were fundamentally, interiorly, changed by their experiences. And it is this shared human culture of pathei-mathos that extremists of what[ever] kind, and those who advocate -isms and -ologies, scorn and so often try to suppress when, for however short a time, they have political or social or religious power and control over the lives of others.

It is this human culture of pathei-mathos which – at least according to my experience, my musings, and my retrospection – reveals to us the genesis of wisdom: which is that it is the muliebral virtues which evolve us as conscious beings, which presence sustainable millennial change. Virtues such as empathy, compassion, humility, and that loyal shared personal love which humanizes those masculous talking-mammals of the Anthropocene, and which masculous talking-mammals have – thousand year following thousand year – caused so much suffering to, and killed, so many other living beings, human and otherwise.

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Source:
Some Questions For DWM, 2014 (pdf)


Myatt’s Philosophy: Honour, Empathy, A Rejection Of Extremism

David Myatt

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Editorial Note:

The following essay is an extract from the book The Mystic Philosophy Of David Myatt by JR Wright and R. Parker, second edition 2018 {1}.

The book provides a detailed analysis of Myatt’s philosophy of pathei mathos; a philosophy, or weltanschauung, which Myatt developed between 2011 and 2015 following his rejection of extremism which, as the author of the following writes,

“was a consequence of pathei mathos – primarily, the suicide of his partner in 2006 – and which learning from grief resulted in him developing what he termed a philosophy of pathei-mathos centred around personal virtues such as humility, compassion, empathy and personal honour.”

It is those virtues which form the core of Myatt’s philosophy, and in our view this extract gets to the heart of that philosophy providing as it does relevant quotations from Myatt’s post-2011 writings.

We have corrected a few typos in the essay.

RDM Crew,
2018

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{1} The book is available as a gratis open access (pdf) document here: https://regardingdavidmyatt.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/myatt-mystic-philosophy-second-edition.pdf

The contents of the book are:

I. A Modern Mystic: David Myatt And The Way of Pathei-Mathos.
II. A Modern Pagan Philosophy.
III. Honour In The Philosophy Of Pathei-Mathos.
IV. An Overview of The Philosophy of Pathei-Mathos.
           Part One: Anti-Racism, Extremism, Honour, and Culture.
           Part Two: Humility, Empathy, and Pathei-Mathos.
V. Classical Paganism And A New Metaphysics.
Appendix I. A Note On Greek Terms In The Philosophy Of Pathei-Mathos.
Appendix II. Towards Understanding Ancestral Culture.
Appendix III. From Mythoi To Empathy: Toward A New Appreciation Of The
Numinous.

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An Overview of The Philosophy of Pathei-Mathos, Part One

It is now generally acknowledged that David Myatt – once renowned as an ideologue {1} and as a ‘theoretician of terror’ {2} – has rejected the extremism that dominated his life for some forty years, thirty of which years were spent as a neo-nazi activist and ten as a “fierce Jihadist” {3} and apologist for Al-Qaeda {4}.

According to his own account {5} this rejection was a consequence of pathei mathos – primarily, the suicide of his partner in 2006 – and which learning from grief resulted in him developing what he termed a philosophy of pathei-mathos centred around personal virtues such as humility, compassion, empathy and personal honour {6}{7}. In addition he has written several interesting, if rather neglected, essays in which he discourses about culture and – politically relevant today – about topics such as extremism. In these discourses, which apply his philosophy to the topics discussed, he is at pains to point out that he presents only his “personal, fallible, opinion about such matters” and that these opinions derive from his decades of “experience of extremists and my decade of study and personal experience of, and involvement with, Islam.” {8}

Culture, Civilization, and Politics

Given Myatt’s predilection during his extremist decades, and especially as a neo-nazi ideologue, for pontificating about both ‘culture’ and ‘civilization’, his mature view of such things, resulting from his recent seven or so years of interior reflection following his learning from grief {9}, are of especial interest.

For he writes that:

“The very usage of the term civilization, for instance, implies a bias; a qualitative often pejorative, prejudiced, assessment and thence a division between something judged ‘better than’ – or ‘superior to’ or ‘more advanced than’ – something else, so that ‘to civilize’ denotes “the action or process of being made civilized” by something or someone believed or considered to be more distinguished, or better than, or superior to, or more advanced.

In common with some other writers, my view is that a clear distinction should be made between the terms culture, society, and civilization, for the terms culture and society – when, for example, applied to describe and distinguish between the customs and way of life of a group or people, and the codes of behaviour and the administrative organization and governance of those residing in a particular geographical area – are quantitative and descriptive rather than qualitative and judgemental. It is therefore in my view inappropriate to write and talk about a European or a Western ‘civilization’ […]

[T]he essence, the nature, of all cultures is the same: to refine, and develope, the individual; to provide a moral guidance; to cultivate such skills as that of reasoning and learning and civility; to be a repository of the recorded/aural pathei-mathos, experiences, and empathic understanding of others (such as our ancestors) over decades, centuries, millennia, as manifest for example in literature, music, memoirs, poetry, history, Art, and often in the past in myths and legends and religious allegories. A recorded/aural pathei-mathos and empathic understanding – a human learning – which teach the same lessons, whatever the culture, whatever the people, whatever the time and whatever the place. The lesson of the importance of a loyal love between two people; the lesson of the importance of virtues such as εὐταξία and honour; the lesson of the need to avoid committing the error of hubris. The lesson of hope, redemption, and change. And the lesson concerning our own nature […]

Ultimately, the assumed or the perceived, the outer, differences do not matter, since what matters for us as human beings capable of reason and civility is our shared humanity and the wisdom that all cultures guide us toward: which wisdom is that it is what is moral – it is what keeps us as mortals balanced, aware of and respective of the numinous – that should guide us, determine our choices and be the basis of our deeds, for our interaction with other human beings, with society, and with the life with which we share this planet.

As outlined in my philosophy of pathei-mathos, my personal view is that the criteria of assessment and judgement are the individual ones of empathy, reason, and the presumption of innocence; which means that abstractions, ideations, theories, and categories, of whatever kind – and whether deemed to be political, religious, or social – are considered as unimportant. That what matters, what is moral, is a very personal knowing in the immediacy-of-the-moment so that what is beyond the purveu of our empathy, of our personal knowing, knowledge, and experience, is something we rationally accept we do not know and so cannot judge or form a reasonable, a fair, a balanced, opinion about. Hence, and for example, individuals and people we do not know, of whatever faith, of whatever perceived ethnicity, sexual orientation, or perceived or assumed or proclaimed culture – whom we have no personal experience of and have had no interaction with over a period of causal time – are unjudged by us and thus given the benefit of the doubt; that is, regarded as innocent, assumed to be good, unless or until direct personal experience, and individual and empathic knowing of them, as individuals, proves otherwise […]

What matters are our own moral character, our interior life, our appreciation of the numinous, and the individual human beings we interact with on the personal level; so that our horizon is to refine ourselves into cultured beings who are civil, reasoned, empathic, non-judgemental, unbiased, and who will, in the words of one guide to what is moral, Ἀπόδοτε οὖν τὰ Καίσαρος Καίσαρι καὶ τὰ τοῦ Θεοῦ τῷ Θεῷ.” {8}

Myatt’s emphasis is thus on the individual; on their interior life, and their personal interaction with others in what he terms, in his philosophy of pathei-mathos, the immediacy of the personal moment:

“Since the range of our faculty of empathy is limited to the immediacy-of-the-moment and to personal interactions, and since the learning wrought by pathei-mathos and pathei-mathos itself is and are direct and personal, then the knowledge, the understanding, that empathy and pathei-mathos reveal and provide is of the empathic scale of things and of our limitations of personal knowing and personal understanding. That is, what is so revealed is not some grand or grandiose theory or praxis or philosophy which is considered applicable to others, or which it is believed can or should be developed to be applicable to others or developed to offer guidance beyond the individual in political and/or social and/or religious and/or ideological terms; but rather a very personal, individual, spiritual and thus interior, way. A way of tolerance and humility, where there is an acceptance of the unwisdom, the hubris, the unbalance, of arrogantly, pejoratively, making assumptions about who and what are beyond the range of our empathy and outside of our personal experience.” {10}

There is, therefore, a rejection of involvement with politics:

“Given that the concern of the philosophy of pathei-mathos is the individual and their interior, their spiritual, life, and given that (due to the nature of empathy and pathei-mathos) there is respect for individual judgement, the philosophy of pathei-mathos is apolitical, and thus not concerned with such matters as the theory and practice of governance, nor with changing or reforming society by political means.” {11}

In line with the virtues of his philosophy, Myatt is scathing regarding extremism in general:

“One of the worst consequences of the extremism of extremists – of modern hubris in general – is, or seems to me to be, the loss of what is personal, and thus what is human; the loss of the empathic, the human, scale of things; with what is personal, human, empathic, being or becoming displaced, scorned, forgotten, obscured, or a target for destruction and (often violent) replacement by something supra-personal such as some abstract political/religious notion or concept, or some ideal, or by some prejudice and some often violent intolerance regarding human beings we do not personally know because beyond the range of our empathy.

That is, the human, the personal, the empathic, the natural, the immediate, scale of things – a tolerant and a fair acceptance of what-is – is lost and replaced by an artificial scale posited by some ideology or manufactured by some τύραννος; a scale in which the suffering of individuals, and strife, are regarded as inevitable, even necessary, in order for ‘victory to be achieved’ or for some ideal or plan or agenda or manifesto to be implemented. Thus the good, the stability, that exists within society is ignored, with the problems of society – real, imagined, or manufactured by propaganda – trumpeted. There is then incitement to disaffection, with harshness and violent change of and within society regarded as desirable or necessary in order to achieve preset, predetermined, and always ‘urgent’ goals and aims, since slow personal reform and change in society – that which appreciates and accepts the good in an existing society and in people over and above the problems and the bad – is anathema to extremists, anathema to their harsh intolerant empathy-lacking nature and to their hubriatic striving.” {12}

All this amounts to viewing matters – events in the external world, and our relation to other humans – in terms of two principles rather than in terms of politics, ideology, dogma, or revolutionary social change. The first principle is personal honour; the second what Myatt terms ‘the cosmic perspective’, of which perspective Myatt writes:

“The Cosmic Perspective reveals a particular truth not only about the Anthropocene (and thus about our φύσις as human beings) but also about how sustainable millennial change has occurred and can occur. Which change is via the progression, the evolution – the development of the faculties and the consciousness – of individuals individually. This is the interior, the a-causal, change of individuals wrought by a scholarly learning of and from our thousands of years old human culture of pathei-mathos, by our own pathei-mathos, and by that personal appreciation of the numinous that both the Cosmic Perspective and the muliebral virtues incline us toward. This aeonic change voids what we now describe by the terms politics and religion and direct social activism of the violent type. There is thus a shift from identifying with the communal, the collective – from identifying with a particular contemporary or a past society or some particular national culture or some particular causal form such as a State or nation or empire or some -ism or some -ology – toward that-which has endured over centuries and millennia: our human culture of pathei-mathos. For the human culture of pathei-mathos records and transmits, in various ways, the pathei-mathos of individuals over thousands of years, manifest as this sustainable millennial culture is in literature, poetry, memoirs, aural stories, in non-verbal mediums such as music and Art, and in the experiences – written, recorded, and aural – of those who over the centuries have appreciated the numinous, and those who endured suffering, conflict, disaster, tragedy, and war, and who were fundamentally, interiorly, changed by their experiences.” {13}

Given this perspective, and given that personal honour “cannot be extracted out from the living moment and our participation in the moment” {7} and is a necessary virtue, then Myatt’s philosophy, while somewhat redolent of Buddhism, Taoism, and the Catholic contemplative tradition, is rather unique in that the personal use of force (including lethal force) in the immediacy of the moment is justified in personal defence of one’s self or of others, since

“the personal virtue of honour, and the cultivation of wu-wei, are – together – a practical, a living, manifestation of our understanding and appreciation of the numinous; of how to live, to behave, as empathy intimates we can or should in order to avoid committing the folly, the error, of ὕβρις, in order not to cause suffering, and in order to re-present, to acquire, ἁρμονίη. For personal honour is essentially a presencing, a grounding, of ψυχή – of Life, of our φύσις – occurring when the insight (the knowing) of a developed empathy inclines us toward a compassion that is, of necessity, balanced by σωφρονεῖν and in accord with δίκη.” {14}

Given the mention of wu-wei in many of Myatt’s recent writings, it is no surprise that Myatt admits (or, rather, overstates) his debt to Taoism:

“According to my limited understanding and knowledge, I am not expressing anything new here. Indeed, I feel (and I use the word ‘feel’ intentionally) that I am only re-expressing what I intuitively (and possibly incorrectly) understood nearly half a century ago about Taoism when I lived in the Far East and was taught that ancient philosophy by someone who was also trying to instruct me in a particular Martial Art.” {13}

It is therefore possible to speculate that the archetypal follower of Myatt’s philosophy of pathei-mathos – if there were or could be such followers of such a personal philosophy of life – might be akin to one of the following: (i) a reclusive or wandering, or communal living, mystic, concerned only with their interior life and/or with scholarly study, yet prepared – in the immediacy of the moment and when confronted by someone or some group being dishonourable – to do what is honourable in defence of themselves or others even if that meant their own death; (ii) someone outwardly ordinary who was in, or who was seeking, a loving relationship, and who – compassionate and sensitive and cultured – was unconcerned with politics or conventional religion, and yet prepared – in the immediacy of the moment and when confronted by someone or some group being dishonourable – to do what is honourable in defence of themselves or others even if that meant their own death; (iii) someone with an interior sense of what is honourable whose occupation or career or way of life enables them, in a personal manner and within their milieu, to individually do what is honourable, fair, and just; and (iv) someone who – compassionate and empathic by nature – whose occupation or career or way of life enables them, in a personal manner and within their milieu, to individually do what is compassionate and who would – in the immediacy of the moment and when confronted by someone or some group being dishonourable – do what is honourable in defence of themselves or others even if that meant their own death.

In Myatt’s view, such individuals would be acting in a wise way – in accord with the aforementioned cosmic perspective – since:

“The only effective, long-lasting, change and reform that does not cause suffering – that is not redolent of ὕβρις – is the one that changes human beings in an individual way by personal example and/or because of πάθει μάθος, and thus interiorly changes what, in them, predisposes them, or inclines them toward, doing or what urges them to do, what is dishonourable, undignified, unfair, and uncompassionate. That is what, individually, changes or rebalances bad φύσις and thus brings-into-being, or restores, good φύσις.” {15}

For:

“It is inner, personal, change – in individuals, of their nature, their character – that is is the ethical, the numinous, way to solve such personal and social problems as exist and arise. That such inner change of necessity comes before any striving for outer change by whatever means, whether such means be termed or classified as political, social, economic, religious. That the only effective, long-lasting, change and reform is understood as the one that evolves human beings and thus changes what, in them, predisposes them, or inclines them toward, doing or what urges them to do, what is dishonourable, undignified, unfair, and uncompassionate.” {11}

Extremism, Racism, And Prejudice

In Myatt’s philosophy, the personal knowing of others provided by empathy and the self-knowing that pathei-mathos reveals replace the categorizations by which we have assumed we can know and understand others and ourselves:

“Hitherto, the φύσις of beings and Being has most usually been apprehended, and understood, in one of three ways or by varied combinations of those three ways. The first such perceiveration is that deriving from our known physical senses – by Phainómenon – and by what has been posited on the basis of Phainómenon, which has often meant the manufacture, by we human beings, of categories and abstract forms which beings (including living beings) are assigned to on the basis of some feature that has been outwardly observed or which has been assumed to be possessed by some beings or collocation of beings.
The second such perceiveration derives from positing a ‘primal cause’ – often denoted by God, or a god or the gods, but sometimes denoted by some mechanism, or some apparently inscrutable means, such as ‘karma’ or ‘fate’ – and then understanding beings (especially living beings) in terms of that cause: for example as subject to, and/or as determined or influenced by or dependant on, that primal cause.

The third such perceiveration derives from positing a human faculty of reason and certain rules of reasoning whereby it is possible to dispassionately examine collocations of words and symbols which relate, or which are said to relate, to what is correct (valid, true) or incorrect (invalid, false) and which collocations are considered to be – or which are regarded by their proponents as representative of – either knowledge or as a type of, a guide to, knowing.

All three of these perceiverations, in essence, involve denotatum, with our being, for example, understood in relation to some-thing we or others have posited and then named and, importantly, consider or believe applies or can apply (i) to those who, by virtue of the assumption of ipseity, are not-us, and (ii) beyond the finite, the living, personal moment of the perceiveration.

Thus, in the case of Phainómenon we have, in assessing and trying to understand our own φύσις as a human being, assumed ipseity – a separation from others – as well as having assigned ourselves (or been assigned by others) to some supra-personal category on the basis of such things as place of birth, skin colour, occupation (or lack of one), familial origin or status (or wealth or religion), some-thing termed ‘intelligence’, physical ability (or the lack thereof), our natural attraction to those of a different, or the same, gender; and so on.” {16}

In Myatt’s view, extremism – whether political or religious – makes some category an ideal to be strived for or returned to, since:

“All extremists accept – and all extremisms are founded on – the instinctive belief or the axiom that their cherished ideation(s) or abstraction(s) is or are more important, more valuable, than the individual and the feelings, desires, hopes, and happiness, of the individual. The extremist thus views and understands the world in terms of abstractions; in terms of a manufactured generalization, a hypothesis, a posited thing, an assumption or assumptions about, an extrapolation of or from some-thing, or some assumed or extrapolated ideal ‘form’ of some-thing. Sometimes, abstractions are generalization based on some sample(s), or on some median (average) value or sets of values, observed, sampled, or assumed. Abstractions can be of some-thing past, in the present, or described as a goal or an ideal which it is assumed could be attained or achieved in the future.

The abstractions of extremism are manifest in the ideology, which posits or which attempts to explain (however irrationally and intolerantly) some ideated form, some assumed or believed in perfect (ideal) form or category of some-thing, and which ideated form is or can be or should be (according to the ideology) contrasted with what is considered or assumed to be its opposite.” {17}

Thus in racism individuals are assigned to, associated with, some ‘race’ with the various ‘races’ assigned a qualitative value – describing their ‘worth’ – based on what some ideology or some ideologue state or believe is their contribution to ‘civilization’ and on how useful or harmful they might be to those deeming themselves ‘superior’.

This is immoral, according to Myatt, not only because it is dishonourable but because of the primacy of empathic, of personal, knowing:

“Everything others associate with an individual, or ascribe to an individual, or use to describe or to denote an individual, or even how an individual denotes or describes themselves, are not relevant, and have no bearing on our understanding, our knowledge, of that individual and thus – morally – should be ignored, for it is our personal knowing of them which is necessary, important, valid, fair. For assessment of another – by the nature of assessment and the nature of empathy – can only be personal, direct, individual. Anything else is biased prejudgement or prejudice or unproven assumption.

This means that we approach them – we view them – without any prejudice, without any expectations, and without having made any assumptions concerning them, and as a unique, still unknown, still undiscovered, individual person: as ‘innocent’ until proven, until revealed by their actions and behaviour to be, otherwise. Furthermore, empathy – the acausal perception/knowing and revealing of physis – knows nothing of temporal things and human manufactured abstractions/categories such as assumed or assigned ethnicity; nothing of gender; nothing of what is now often termed ‘sexual preference/orientation’. Nothing of politics, or religion. Nothing of some disability someone may suffer from; nothing of social status or wealth; nothing regarding occupation (or lack of one). Nothing regarding the views, the opinions, of others concerning someone. For empathy is just empathy, a perception different from our other senses such as sight and hearing, and a perception which provides us, or which can provide us, with a unique perspective, a unique type of knowing, a unique (acausal) connexion to the external world and especially to other human beings.

Empathy – and the knowing that derives from it – thus transcends ‘race’, politics, religion, gender, sexual orientation, occupation, wealth (or lack of it), ‘status’, and all the other things and concepts often used to describe, to denote, to prejudge, to classify, a person; so that to judge someone – for example – by and because of their political views (real or assumed) or by their religion or by their sexual orientation is an act of hubris.

In practice, therefore, in the revealing of the physis of a person, the political views, the religion, the gender, the perceived ethnicity, of someone are irrelevant. It is a personal knowing of them, the perception of their physis by empathy, and an acceptance of them as – and getting to know them as – a unique individual which are important and considered moral; for they are one emanation of the Life of which we ourselves are but one other finite and fallible part.” {12}

However, Myatt’s analysis of extremism goes much further. Based on his forty years of personal experience he considers that the extremist is a particular type of person “by nature or becomes so through association with or because of the influence of others, or because of ideological indoctrination” and that

“it is in the nature of extremists that they disdain, and often despise, the muliebral virtues of empathy, sensitivity, humility, gentleness, forgiveness, compassion, and the desire to love and be loved over and above the desire for conflict, territorial identity, and for war. Thus we find in extremism a glorification of the masculous at the expense of the muliebral; a definite personal certitude of knowing; a glorification of toughness and aggression
and war; an aggressive territorial pride; a tendency to believe, or the forthright assertion, that ‘might is right’ and kampf is necessary; the desire to organize/control; a prominent desire for adventure and/or for conflict/war and/or violence and competition.” {17}

Thus, in Myatt’s philosophy, the extremist is hubriatic: unbalanced because lacking in – or having rejected or suppressed – the muliebral virtues which are or which should be an essential part of our human nature and the genesis of all culture; with the need for such muliebral virtues, for such a balance, and the necessity of culture, among the important things that ‘our culture of pathei-mathos’ informs us about {18}. Little wonder, then, that

“it is [our] shared human culture of pathei-mathos that extremists of whatever kind, and those who advocate -isms and -ologies, scorn and so often try to suppress when, for however short a time, they have political or social or religious power and control over the lives of others. It is this human culture of pathei-mathos which – at least according to my experience, my musings, and my retrospection – reveals to us the genesis of wisdom: which is that it is the muliebral virtues which evolve us as conscious beings, which presence sustainable millennial change. Virtues such as empathy, compassion, humility, and that loyal shared personal love which humanizes those masculous talking-mammals of the Anthropocene, and which masculous talking-mammals have – thousand year following thousand year – caused so much suffering to, and killed, so many other living beings, human and otherwise.” {13}

Furthermore, according to Myatt:

“Given the masculous nature and the masculous ethos of extremism, it is no surprise that the majority of extremists are men; and given that, in my own opinion, the predominant ethos of the last three millennia – especially within the societies of the West – has been a masculous, patriarchal, one it is no surprise that women were expected to be, and often had no option but to be, subservient, and no surprise therefore that a modern movement has arisen to try and correct the imbalance between the masculous and the muliebral […]

[Yet] it is only by using and developing our faculty of empathy, on an individual basis, that we can apprehend and thence understand the muliebral; [for] the muliebral can only be manifested, presenced, individually in our own lives according to that personal, individual, apprehension. Presenced, for example, in our compassion, in our honour, by a personal loyal love, and in that appreciation of innocence and of the numinous that inclines us, as individuals, to reject all prejudice and to distance ourselves from that pride, that certainty-of-knowing about ourselves and those presumptions we make about others, which are so redolent of, and which so presence and have so presenced, the patriarchal ethos.” {13}

Extremism and racism, therefore, are understood in Myatt’s philosophy in relation to hubris and enantiodromia:

“Enantiodromia is the term used, in the philosophy of pathei-mathos, to describe the revealing, the process, of perceiving, feeling, knowing, beyond causal appearance and the separation-of-otherness and thus when what has become separated – or has been incorrectly perceived as separated – returns to the wholeness, the unity, from whence it came forth. When, that is, beings are understood in their correct relation to Being, beyond the causal abstraction of different/conflicting ideated opposites, and when as a result, a reformation of the individual, occurs. A relation, an appreciation of the numinous, that empathy and pathei-mathos provide, and which relation and which appreciation the accumulated pathei-mathos of individuals over millennia have made us aware of or tried to inform us or teach us about.” {14}

“For what the culture of pathei-mathos reveals is that we human beings, are – personally – both the cause and the cure of suffering; and that our choice is whether or not we live, or try to live, in a manner which does not intentionally contribute to or which is not the genesis of new suffering. The choice, in effect, to choose the way of harmony – the natural balance – in preference to hubris.” {19}

Conclusion

In his seminal and scholarly essay Questions of Good, Evil, Honour, and God {19}, Myatt places the ethics of his philosophy in the context of the theories of ethics postulated by Christianity, by Islam, and by the proponents of the modern State. He concludes, in respect of his philosophy and its ethics, that:

“The alternative ontology, derived from the culture of pathei-mathos, suggests that the answer to the question regarding the meaning of our existence is simply to be that which we are. To be in balance, in harmony, with Life; the balance that is love, compassion, humility, empathy, honour, tolerance, kindness, and wu-wei. This, by its nature, is a personal answer and a personal choice; an alternative way that compliments and is respectful of other answers, other choices, and of other ways of dealing with issues such as the suffering that afflicts others, the harm that humans do so often inflict and have for so long inflicted upon others. The personal non-judgemental way, of presumption of innocence and of wu-wei, balanced by, if required, a personal valourous, an honourable, intervention in a personal situation in the immediacy of the moment.”

However, this answer is contingent on understanding, via empathy and pathei-mathos, not only ‘the illusion of ipseity’ {16} – the ‘separation-of-otherness’ – but also the cosmic perspective and thus the temporary nature of all our human manufactured forms, categories, and abstractions, for according to Myatt:

“There has been, as there still is, at least in my view, a failure to appreciate two things. Firstly, the causal (the mortal) nature of all forms: from institutions, governments, laws, States, nations, movements, societies, organizations, empires, to leaders and those embodying in some manner the authority, the volksgeist, the ideations, the principles, the aspirations, of their time. Secondly, and possibly most important of all, that what is muliebral cannot be embodied in some organization or movement, or in some -ism, or in any causal form – and certainly cannot be expressed via the medium of words, whether spoken or written – without changing it, distorting it, from what it is into some-thing else. For the muliebral by its very φύσις is personal, individual, in nature and only presenced in the immediacy-of-the-moment, and thus cannot be the object of a supra-personal aspiration and thus should not be ‘idealized’ or even be the subject of an endeavour to express it in some principles or principles (political or otherwise), or by some axiom or axioms, or by some dogma. For all such things – forms and words included – are manifestations, a presencing, of what is, in φύσις, masculous and temporal. Or, expressed more simply, the muliebral presences and manifests what is a-causal – what, in the past, has often inclined us to appreciate the numinous – while the masculous presences and manifests what is causal, temporal, and what in the past has often inclined us toward hubris and being egoistic.” {13}

Myatt’s comprehensive philosophy – propounded in various writings between 2012 and 2014 and which he recently described as being just his personal weltanschauung rather than a philosophy {20} – thus provides an interesting, intriguing, and insightful if iconoclastic, analysis of extremism and contemporary society as well as offering an understandable ethics centred on personal honour, a rather mystical ontology, and a somewhat mystical answer to the question of existence; and although his philosophy certainly deserves to be more widely studied and more widely appreciated, it will doubtless – given Myatt’s outré and controversial life – continue to be neglected for many, many, decades to come.

R. Parker
2014

Notes

{1} (a) Barnett, Antony. Right here, right now, The Observer, February 9, 2003. (b) Michael, George. The Enemy of My Enemy: The Alarming Convergence of Militant Islam and the Extreme Right. University Press of Kansas, 2006, p. 142ff.
{2} Searchlight, July 2000.
{3} Amis, Martin. The Second Plane. Jonathan Cape, 2008, p.157
{4} (a) Simon Wiesenthal Center: Response, Summer 2003, Vol 24, #2. (b) Wistrich, Robert S. A Lethal Obsession: Anti-Semitism from Antiquity to the Global Jihad, Random House, 2010.
{5} (a) Myatt, David. Myngath – Some Recollections of a Wyrdful and Extremist Life. 2013. ISBN 978-1484110744. (b) Myatt, David. Understanding And Rejecting Extremism. 2013. ISBN 978-1484854266
{6} Myatt’s philosophy of pathei-mathos is described in the following three published collections of his essays: (a) The Numinous Way of Pathei-Mathos. 2013. ISBN 978-1484096642. (b) One Vagabond In Exile From The Gods: Some Personal and Metaphysical Musings. 2014. ISBN 978-1502396105. (c) Religion, Empathy, and Pathei-Mathos. 2013. ISBN 978-1484097984
The three collections of essays are also available, as of October 2014 and as pdf files, from his weblog at http://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/
{7} Of the virtue of personal honour, Myatt writes that it

“presences the virtues of fairness, tolerance, compassion, humility, and εὐταξία – as (i) a natural intuitive (wordless) expression of the numinous (‘the good’, δίκη, συμπάθεια) and (ii) of both what the culture of pathei-mathos and the acausal-knowing of empathy reveal we should do (or incline us toward doing) in the immediacy of the personal moment when personally confronted by what is unfair, unjust, and extreme […]

[For] such honour – by its and our φύσις – is and can only ever be personal, and thus cannot be extracted out from the ‘living moment’ and our participation in the moment; for it only through such things as a personal study of the culture of pathei-mathos and the development of the faculty of empathy that a person who does not naturally possess the instinct for δίκη can develope what is essentially ‘the human faculty of honour’, and which faculty is often appreciated and/or discovered via our own personal pathei-mathos.” The Way Of Pathei-Mathos – A Précis, in One Vagabond In Exile From The Gods: Some Personal and Metaphysical Musings.

{8} Myatt, David. Let Us Then Try What Love Can Do. 2012. e-text.
{9} The Development of the Numinous Way. The essay is included, as an appendix, in the printed version of his autobiography Myngath, ISBN 978-1484110744
{10} Conspectus of The Philosophy of Pathei-Mathos. 2012. The essay is included in Myatt’s book The Numinous Way of Pathei-Mathos, ISBN 978-1484096642
{11} Society, Politics, Social Reform, and Pathei-Mathos. 2012. The essay is included in The Numinous Way of Pathei-Mathos, ISBN 978-1484096642
{12} Some Personal Musings On Empathy In Relation to the Philosophy of πάθει μάθος. 2012. The essay is included in The Numinous Way of Pathei-Mathos, ISBN 978-1484096642
{13} Some Questions For DWM. 2014. The essay is included in One Vagabond In Exile From The Gods: Some Personal and Metaphysical Musings, 2014, ISBN 978-1502396105
{14} The Numinous Way of Pathei-Mathos. 2013. ISBN 978-1484096642
{15} The Way of Pathei-Mathos – A Philosophical Compendium. 2012. The essay is included in The Numinous Way of Pathei-Mathos, ISBN 978-1484096642
{16} See: (a) Toward Understand The Acausal, and (b) The Way Of Pathei-Mathos – A Précis. Both essays are included in One Vagabond In Exile From The Gods: Some Personal and Metaphysical Musings, 2014, ISBN 978-1502396105
{17} Myatt, David. Understanding And Rejecting Extremism. 2013. ISBN 978-1484854266
{18} Regarding ‘the culture of pathei-mathos’ – a key part of his philosophy – see Myatt’s 2014 essay Education And The Culture Of Pathei-Mathos, which is included in One Vagabond In Exile From The Gods: Some Personal and Metaphysical Musings, ISBN 978-1502396105
{19} Questions of Good, Evil, Honour, and God. 2013. The essay is included in Religion, Empathy, and Pathei-Mathos, ISBN 978-1484097984