Western Paganism And Hermeticism

David Myatt

David Myatt

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Western Paganism And Hermeticism:
Myatt And The Renaissance of Western Culture

Contents
° Preface
° Re-discovering Western Paganism
° An Insight Into Pagan Mysticism
° Regarding Myatt’s Hermetica
° The Divine Pymander
° Myatt’s Monas – A New Translation of Corpus Hermeticum IV
° On Native Egyptian Influence In The Corpus Hermeticum
° Suffering, Honour, And The Culture Of The West
° A New Pagan Metaphysics
° A Review Of Myatt’s ‘Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos’
° A Review Of Myatt’s Tu Es Diaboli Ianua
° Appendix I – From Mythoi To Empathy
° Appendix II – Towards Understanding Ancestral Culture
° Appendix III – An Indebtedness To Ancient Greek And Greco-Roman Culture
° Appendix IV – Concerning ἀγαθός and νοῦς in the Corpus Hermeticum

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David Myatt And The Renaissance of Western Culture
(pdf)

This is the fourth edition of the book titled Western Paganism And Hermeticism and which edition includes the article, A Review Of Myatt’s Tu Es Diaboli Ianu, and as appendixes three relatively recent (2018-2019) articles by Myatt: From Mythoi To Empathy, in which he describes his use of the term ‘numinous’, Towards Understanding Ancestral Culture, and his autobiographical An Indebtedness To Ancient Greek And Greco-Roman Culture in which he describes his idiosyncratic use of Greek terms such as σωφρονεῖν.

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The following extract from the Preface describes the purpose of the book:

{quote}

We present here a selection of recent articles about Western paganism and hermeticism, indebted as those articles are to Myatt’s translations of texts from the ancient Corpus Hermeticism and his post-2013 writings such as his book Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos, for Myatt’s thesis in that book is that Western paganism is essentially the classical paganism of Ancient Greece and Rome and represents the ethos of the culture of the West, which ethos the Hebraic religion of Christianity supplanted. It is our view that those translations, the associated commentaries, and such books enable an insight into, and thus the evolution of, Western culture.

As mentioned in one of the articles included here, the ethos of the West:
             “is the ethos, the pragmatic spirituality, and the notion of balance, harmony, elegance, and of beauty, which infuses the culture and the civilization of Ancient Greece and Rome, and which culture so enthused those Europeans – artists, scholars, educators, potentates, and others – who from the 14th century on brought about the Renaissance and which Renaissance, which re-discovery of the culture of ancient Greece and Rome, gave birth to and infused our Western ‘Faustian’ civilization.”

However,
              “In respect of rediscovering the pagan spirituality of the West a fundamental problem has been a lack of knowledge among those interested in what, exactly, that spirituality is. A problem exacerbated by pre-existing translations of some of the ancient works knowledge of which is necessary in order to understand that spirituality. Works such as the Oedipus Tyrannus and the Antigone by Sophocles, the Agamemnon by Aeschylus, and the mystical texts of the Corpus Hermeticism.”

Which is why the authors of the articles included in this compilation have studied Myatt’s translations of classical and hermetic texts, for his translations:
             “when studied together enable us to appreciate and understand the classical, pagan, ethos and thence the ethos of the West itself.”

{/quote}

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Being Human: A Learning from Aliens

Blue Marble Earth Mosaic

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Editorial Note: As with Myatt’s article An Alien View of Planet Earth {1} this almost two decades old article by Myatt may have some relevance in regard to his more recent philosophy of pathei mathos. We have corrected a few obvious typos in the original article.

RDM Crew
May 2019

{1} qv. https://regardingdavidmyatt.wordpress.com/2019/05/29/an-alien-view-of-planet-earth/

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Being Human: A Learning from Aliens

A Cosmic Ethics

Considering the vastness of the Cosmos – millions upon millions of galaxies containing billions upon billions of stars – it is highly likely that intelligent life exists on other planets orbiting other stars. It is also possible that in our own galaxy there are living beings who are more evolved, more intelligent, more powerful, than we are.

Thus, to consider our own human species as the most intelligent, the most advanced, the most powerful, species in the cosmos is not only extremely arrogant, it is also highly irrational, given this vastness of the cosmos and the fact that we have only very recently – in cosmic terms – evolved from more primitive life here on this planet we call Earth.

The time has come for us to use the cosmos – its vastness, the possibility of it being teeming with other, alien, life – as the measure of our own human ethics. That is, to base our ethics upon what actually exists, and not on what we believe, or would like to believe, exists or has happened, and certainly not on our limited, inward, Earth-only, view of life.

Hitherto, our ethics, our morality, have for the most part (the last few thousand years at least) been based upon the concept of God and on revelation. For instance, upon the belief that we humans have been created by an all-powerful deity who either considers us special (He gave His son to redeem us: Christianity), or who has created us and placed us on this planet to test us, so that we can enter Paradise (Islam).

The ethics based on these theocentric concepts is fundamentally homocentric: that is, based on the belief or assumption that the Earth is some kind of gift from God, with us as special, as masters of this world, and thus entitled to use the resources of this planet, including its other life, to aid us. That is, such religious morality affirms it is acceptable for us to breed and kill animals, and other living beings, for food, even though to survive it is often not necessary for us to kill and eat these living things. Such morality also affirms that it often is acceptable for us to kill other human beings, or imprison them, if they have transgressed some “law” and been found “guilty” in some Court of Law according to some “evidence” which has been produced in that Court.

But this is all very inhuman and inhumane; all very uncivilized. That is, it is unfair, illogical, and irrational, when viewed in the greater Cosmic Perspective.

It is these things because we have hitherto viewed them in limited terms, often in very limited, unfair, Earth-only, terms. We must evolve our ethics away from this small, arrogant, unfair, homocentric view toward a view based upon the reality of the cosmos: upon its vastness, with our own species occupying a planet which orbits an ordinary star somewhere on the edge of an ordinary galaxy surrounded by millions upon millions of other star-bearing galaxies.

The Alien Analogy

The best analogy to explain the fundamental difference between the new, cosmic, ethics which we must now accept, and the old, homocentric, ethics, is that of a race of aliens visiting then invading this planet of ours. These aliens – we shall call them Phurads – have superior weapons and technology which make it easy for them to conquer the Earth.

In this analogy, the Phurads have a religion which makes it acceptable for them to herd together “lesser beings” and keep them for food. Thus, we humans find ourselves being hunted by these Phurads for food, as many human beings are captured, and held captive in huge buildings, for the purpose of producing offspring which are then fattened to be eaten.

Further, some humans are taken away, to other planets inhabited by the Phurad, and kept in cages: to be displayed like we humans once displayed wild animals in cages for “entertainment”. In addition, some humans are taken to laboratories where they are kept sedated, and studied by Phurad scientists. Occasionally, it is judged acceptable for a few of these human specimens to be used in “scientific experiments”. Some of these experiments seem quite harmless, to these scientists (such as tagging a few human beings and releasing them back “into the wild” so that their behaviour can be studied) while other experiments are deemed necessary “to further the scientific understanding of the Phurad”. Thus, some humans are used in medical trials, because their blood, or organs, may hold cures for diseases which harm or kill the Phurad, and the suffering and death of several hundred humans (or several thousands over years) is considered morally justified since it may lead to medical breakthroughs, and save the lives of many Phurads.

We humans, of course, take a rather dim view of all these things. What gives the Phurad the right to kill us, eat us, hold us in degrading captivity, experiment on us?

The fact that the morality of the Phurads, based on their religion and philosophy, allows them to do such inhuman things to us is irrelevant to us.

What are we to do? Suffer, and die, in silence? Accept our inferior status? Or do we strive for our freedom and to be treated as equals? But what could we do if the power of the Phurads is such that we have no hope of freedom? Would we still rebel, and rather be killed than suffer the indignity of being kept confined for food? Would we bite the hand that feeds us? Or would we just fall down on our knees and pray for God – or some race of aliens more powerful than the Phurad – to liberate us?

The Human Analogy

We are treating the life on this planet of ours as the Phurads in the above analogy treated humans.

What gives us the right to do this? What gives us the right to breed animals for food? What gives us the right to inflict pain on animals in the name of “science”?

What gives us the right to inflict pain and suffering and death on our fellow human beings?

Are the animals that we breed and hold captive to slaughter for food silently praying to some god? Hoping for liberation from the human monsters who have such power over them? Such an idea, of course, is anthropomorphism, and the fact – known or assumed from our science – that such animals, on our planet at least, do not think, does not make this particular analogy any less valid, in cosmic terms.

That is, the fact that such an animal as a lamb does not and cannot think, in human terms, and so cannot “pray to or even believe in a god”, does not mean that we should not treat that animal in a fair, a just, a rational, and civilized way. Is it entitled to live out its life in freedom? Do we really need to fatten it and then kill and eat it?

Would it be right to sedate it, and then experiment on it because such an experiment might lead to some cure for some human disease?

What is right? What is just? What criteria are we to use to judge such things?

The Cosmic Answer

To live – or strive to live – in a civilized way, in a human way, we have to have ethics: a morality of some kind. That is, we have to have some criteria of judgement, for otherwise there is barbarism, repression, injustice, and a savage, irrational, way of living.

What is the cosmic criteria: what is the ethical standard which the greater, the higher, perspective of the cosmos gives us?

It is the criteria of reason, of fairness, of tolerance: the standard of the honourable thinking being. It is the standard of the living being who is aware, in a rational way, of their own place in the vastness of the cosmos: who is aware of the other life on the planet which is their origin and their home; who is aware of how they themselves have evolved from Nature, how they depend upon Nature.

In brief, it is the criteria of the nexus: of ourselves as living, organic, links between the past and the future of the living being which is this planet. It is the criteria of respect for other living beings, both on this Earth, and in the cosmos.

It is the belief that there should not be any such thing as “ownership” or mastery of any piece of this planet, or other planets, by any one individual or grouping of individuals, since what matters is not ownership, but the well-being of the planet, or planets, the well-being of the living beings which depend upon this planet, and which depend on other planets in the cosmos.

Above all, the cosmic ethic is the belief that every living thing has a “soul”, an essence, a life-energy, which is important for the well-being of the whole, with no one being, or one species of being, of lessor worth than others, and that if it is truely necessary for us to kill another living being, however small, to survive – or even if we kill such a being by accident – then we should respect that being, and indeed lament its death. The way of the cosmos, the cosmic belief, is the belief that we should strive to find ways of living, of surviving, that do not involve killing or harming other living beings.

The Cosmic Challenge

The challenge now is to accept this higher, more civilized, cosmic ethics as the foundation for our personal lives, and strive to create new societies, new ways of living, based upon these ethics.

David Myatt
JD 2451872.315
(23rd November 2000, 1933 UT)

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Article source:
https://web.archive.org/web/20040419194953/http://www.geocities.com/dwmyatt/human1.html

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Image credit:
NASA, Blue Marble Earth Mosaic

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Myatt: Extremism And Reformation

David Myatt

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Contents

° Preface
° A Premature Grieving
° Concerning The Abstractions of Extremism and Race
° Some Notes on The Politics and Ideology of Hate
        Part One: According to the Philosophy of The Numinous Way
        Part Two: A Personal Perspective – My Uncertitude of Knowing
° Some Philosophical and Moral Problems of National-Socialism
° Suffering And The Human Culture Of Pathei-Mathos
° Persecution And War
° The Matter With Death
° Appendix I: Physis And Being
° Appendix II: Pathei-Mathos: Genesis of My Unknowing
° Appendix III: A Matter Of Honour

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Extremism And Reformation
(pdf)

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From the Preface,

The genesis of the compilation of essays was, as mentioned in the included essay A Premature Grieving, the publication in 2019, by a political advocacy group, of various unsubstantiated allegations and disinformation about me and the subsequent repetition of such allegations and disinformation by some mainstream newspapers and media outlets.

The unsubstantiated allegations and the disinformation concerned my supposed continuing involvement with extremism, specifically neo-nazism; it being apparent that neither the political advocacy group nor the newspapers and media which repeated the allegations and the disinformation had bothered to read my extensive post-2011 writings about rejecting extremism and about seeking expiation for my decades-long extremist past.

This compilation of essays is my reply to those unsubstantiated allegations and disinformation.

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Source: https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/2019/05/09/extremism-and-reformation/


Concerning Extremism and Race

David Myatt

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Editorial Note

We reproduce here a semi-autobiographical article by David Myatt written in 2012 in which he explains, in the then context of his ‘numinous way’, why the abstraction of ‘race’ is immoral and why ‘extremism’ – with its hatred – is morally wrong.

That such articles by Myatt have been ignored by the likes of the anti-fascist so-called “Hope Not Hate” group – who should really be described as Hate Not Hope {1} – is no suprise to us given their dependance on abstractions and their desire to propagate “fake news” {2}.

It should be noted that some of the items quoted or mentioned in Myatt’s article – in reference to his ‘numinous way’ such as his Rejecting Abstractions: A Personal Lesson From Extremism – are now only available in archived versions of his 2012 weblog (davidmyatt.wordpress.com) and website (davidmyatt.info).

RDM Crew
May 2019

{1} https://regardingdavidmyatt.wordpress.com/2019/02/21/full-of-hate-not-hope/
{2} https://regardingdavidmyatt.wordpress.com/2019/03/04/twelve-basic-errors/

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Myatt: Extremism And Race
(pdf)

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Article source:
http://www.davidmyatt.info/concerning-abstractions-2012.html

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A Debt To Greek And Greco-Roman Culture

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David Myatt

David Myatt

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An Indebtedness To Ancient Greek And Greco-Roman Culture

One of my fond memories of English schooldays was as a Sixth Form boarder in the late 1960’s when I had a room to myself and an allowance from my father who had returned to live and work in Africa.

As recounted elsewhere [1] the allowance allowed me to travel and buy books, often from bookshops in London, Oxford, and Cambridge, and one such purchase was of the complete, multi-volume, Oxford English Dictionary, and almost every evening I loved

“to dip into it for an hour or so, discovering new words, their etymology, and a quotation or two to betake me, in the days following, to some library or some bookshop to find and to read the work or works in question. I enjoyed the richness, the diversity, the flexibility, of the English language; its assimilation of so many words from other languages, and that ambiguity of sound which sometimes led to or could lead to such variations in spelling as sometimes seemed to annoy those who desired to reform that language and which reform would see its versatility, quirkiness, and heritage, lost in order fit some boring manufactured schemata.” [2]

Such schoolboy habits would prove useful when I began to develope my philosophy of pathei-mathos and saught to express my intuitions about Being and about our mortal being through the medium of English words.

Such an expression led me to use some non-English terms mostly from Ancient Greek but occasionally from Latin in the hope that such terms would not only be able to convey my meaning better than some easily mis-understood English term but also might be assimilated into the English language as philosophical terms either in their transliterated English form or in their Greek and Latin form.

Such terms might also reveal my indebtedness to Ancient Greek and Greco-Roman culture and how and why the philosophy of pathei-mathos is both a “transition from mythoi and anthropomorphic deities (theos and theoi) to an appreciation of the numinous sans denotatum and sans religion” [3] and thus a return to individual insight and understanding over impersonal abstractions/ideations, over denotatum, and over religious and political dogma, with the Latin denotatum – used as an Anglicized term and which thus can be used to describe both singular and plural instances of denoting and naming – a useful example of my somewhat idiosyncratic methodology.

Thus and for example I used and use σοφόν instead of σοφός when the sense implied is not the usual “skilled”, or “learned” or “wise” but rather what lies beyond and what was/is the genesis of what is presenced in a person as skill, or learning, or wisdom.

I used and use σωφρονεῖν in preference to σωφροσύνη (sophrosyne) to suggest a fair and balanced personal judgement rather than the fairly modern English interpretation of σωφροσύνη (sophrosyne) as “soundness of mind, moderation”.

I used and use Δίκα instead of δίκη when the sense implied is “what lies beyond and what was the genesis of δίκη personified as [a] goddess”, which is the natural instinct in those of noble physis (φύσις) for honour, fairness, and beauty – καλὸς κἀγαθός [4] – and thus the natural balance rather than “the correct/customary/ancestral way” or an abstract, impersonal, modern-type of “justice”.

In most such cases the Greek words are used, as I wrote in A Note On Greek Terms In The Philosophy Of Pathei-Mathos, in an Anglicized way – as transliterated terms such as pathei-mathos and enantiodromia are – with there being no need to employ Greek inflective forms.

In the cases where the Greek words are not transliterated – σωφρονεῖν as sophronein for example – the intent was to not only provide a direct link to Ancient Greek and Greco-Roman culture but also to signify that the word represents an important or interesting metaphysical principle in the philosophy of pathei-mathos.

Hence σοφόν – sophon – is how and why empathy and pathei-mathos can reveal and can presence our physis, the nature of our being, the nature of Being itself, and reveal that Time is not only causal but acausal. It also suggests, as do Δίκα and σωφρονεῖν, the primacy and the importance of individual insight and understanding.

In a world where propaganda and disinformation still proliferate, based as they are on denotatum and often on political dogma and impersonal abstractions/ideations, and in a world where mythoi and anthropomorphic deities (theos and theoi) and thus organized religion still seem to dominate, the philosophy of pathei-mathos provides an alternative: the individual way of pathei-mathos and of empathy, based as it is on four axioms:

(i) that it is empathy and pathei-mathos which can wordlessly reveal the ontological reality both of our own physis and of how we, as sentient beings, relate to other living beings and to Being itself; (ii) that it is denotatum – and thus the abstractions deriving therefrom – which, in respect of human beings, can and often do obscure our physis and our relation to other living beings and to Being; (iii) that denotatum and abstractions imply a dialectic of contradictory opposites and thus for we human beings a separation-of-otherness; and (iv) that this dialectic of opposites is, has been, and can be a cause of suffering for both ourselves, as sentient beings, and – as a causal human presenced effect – for the other life with which we share the planet named in English as Earth. [5]

Does my idiosyncratic use of Ancient Greek and Latin terms make this philosophy confusing, difficult to understand and difficult to appreciate? Perhaps. But since philosophia – ϕιλοσοϕία – is, at least according to my fallible understanding, becoming a friend of σοφόν, [6] and since such a personal friendship involves seeking to understand Being, beings, and Time, and since part of the ethos of the culture of the West – heir to Ancient Greek and Greco-Roman culture – is or at least was a personal and rational quest for understanding and knowledge, then perhaps some effort, as befits those of noble physis who appreciate and who may seek to presence καλὸς κἀγαθός, is only to be expected.

David Myatt
April 2019

[1] Early Years, in Myngath: Some Recollections of a Wyrdful and Extremist Life. 2013.

[2] The Joy Of Words, 2013.

[3] From Mythoi To Empathy: Toward A New Appreciation Of The Numinous. 2018.

[4] I have described καλὸς κἀγαθός in my two recent books Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos, and Tu Es Diaboli Ianua.

[5] Physis And Being: An Introduction To The Philosophy Of Pathei-Mathos. 2019.

[6] The Way of Pathei-Mathos: A Philosophical Compendiary, in The Numinous Way of Pathei-Mathos, fifth edition, 2018. ISBN 978-1484096642.

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Article source:
https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/2019/04/23/an-indebtedness-to-ancient-greek-and-greco-roman-culture/


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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Words Of A Modern Mystic

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David Myatt

David Myatt

Memories Of Manual Labour

Recalling happy memories of past years is perhaps a useful therapy during those seemingly long night hours when one is confined, in a foreign land, to a hospital bed and cannot, for a variety of reasons, enjoy the peace of sleep. During two such occasions, not that long ago, I found myself dwelling on my years of outdoor manual labour; on some four decades of cycling English lanes, tracks, and roads; and on the years spent running in the hills of South Shropshire and in places such as the Lake District.

In retrospection, this dwelling on such times quite surprised me, given my past married lives, my past predilection for the company of women, and the very many times I had been subsumed with love, or a passion, for a particular lady and had enjoyed with and because of them nights, days, weeks, sometimes months, of blissful happiness. Perhaps, I wondered, such a dwelling during such conditions revealed something about my character. Of how I am an outdoor, country, person by nature who by choice would choose to work alone; and someone perhaps too selfish, and too self-absorbed, to be a happily married man.

Suffice to write, now, that the memories that brought the most inner peace were those connected with outdoor work. Of those Summer days in Shropshire when – in the large garden of my employer – we would all sit down to enjoy our outdoor lunch prepared by his wife. Of days spent, over a decade later, on a farm in warm or hotful Sun, alone in a twenty-five or thirty acre field, forcing bamboo canes – many six feet in length – by hand into often hard ground next to recently budded trees planted in rows.

Of the dry dusty days of laying irrigation pipes and setting up the ‘rain gun’ sprinkler system with its large hose reel, enjoyed especially when the pump was the old Ford tractor with water drawn from the nearby river home to Kingfishers and bounded by many weeping Willow trees. Of, in early Spring, those cold days when the few of us out in the fields would sit around an open fire to eat our lunch.

Of those six straight weeks worked without a day off one Spring when, delayed by bad weather, we were finally able to prepare the soil and plant. Of those flash floods that flooded the lane beside one of the fields of the farm and of the car that became stuck, requiring two of us to bodily lift the lady driver out and carry her to dry land to later on fetch the tractor and tow her car from that lane back to the unaffected main road. Of the days spent one Autumn using a hand-held ‘thumper’ to erect new fence posts.

Of the hours, the days, the weeks, spent alone in fields hoeing the weeds out by hand from between the planted trees with my 1950s hoe whose long hickory handle years of use had made smooth. Of – years before, on another farm – the restful needful lunch (washed down by local cider) that followed hours of mucking-out pig sties by hand using a shovel and a barrow wheeled up a plank onto a trailer, hitched to a tractor, which when full I drove away then tipped to form or join another pile ready for the muck-spreader…

Had I then – during those years – the understanding and the self-insight I believe I now posses perhaps my life would, could, should, have been quite different and I would not have caused the suffering, and the deaths, that I caused. But was that person, so happily working in such places, the real me?

Yes, I do feel so, now. How then – why then – did I always seem to (after months, a year, or several years) drift away from such work back to occupy, preoccupy, myself with some political or some religious machination? It is just too easy, too trite, to say or write that I was a ‘complicated’ person. More truthfully, I was flawed, unhealthy. Suffering from extremism: for that infection wrought an inner dissatisfaction, and so greatly disturbed my psyche that I felt I had ‘a duty’ to do, and pontificate about, certain things. For that infection caused me, as so many others, to have that hubriatic certainty-of-knowing that engenders violence, hatred, terror, and oppression. I, as so many, had exchanged that real outdoor world – which centuries of toil had created – for some idealistic, ideological, dream we carried around in our head:

We are the hollow men
We are the stuffed men
Leaning together
Headpiece filled with straw

Our land, the dead land, while we extremists wreck havoc among the living land that provides us with the means to live and which, were we only to know it, nurtures the numinous from whence derives the culture that keeps our human hopes, our very humanity, alive.

For me – as for many others century following century – pathei-mathos was a cure. Yet there is not, and cannot be, any absolution: I was an ideologue, a leader, a fanatic, who enthusiastically taught, proselytized, persuaded, propagandised, and incited. Thus I alone was responsible for what I said, what I wrote, and what I did – for the suffering caused – during my extremist decades, just as I alone was responsible for the hurt my selfishness, my self-absorption, personally caused to others: wives, lovers, partners, family, relatives, and friends.

There appears to be, however, one small consolation, at least for me. Which is that such outdoor work – and reflexion upon it – slowly provided, slowly built within me, the insights and the feelings that led to that ‘numinous way’ I refined, after 2011, into my philosophy (or perhaps more correctly, into my weltanschauung) of pathei-mathos. Insights and feelings greatly added to in 2002 when I began work on another farm, and which work first led me to seriously doubt my commitment to the Muslim way of life, and write letters containing words such as these:

“There is a lovely, simple, pleasure here in this field. Spring is most certainly here: in the meadow fields, seedlings of the late Spring flowers push up through the tufts of grass whose frost-bitten ends are joined by shoots of new growth. Already some flowers bloom in the grass: there, a Dandelion; there: almost two circles of Daisies. And, to compliment the calls and songs of other birds, the loud repeating call of the Parus major.

It is good to be here, with an unobstructed view of the sky, and I watch the clouds, borne as they are on a still cool breeze that begins to chill my hands, a little. But there is Sun, warm, when the altocumulus breaks. On the horizon in the North, beyond the tall old Oak, small Cumulus clouds drift toward the hills, ten miles distant. Thus am I again – for these moments – at peace with myself, this world, listening as I do to a large flock of Starlings who chatter among themselves in the trees across from the drainage ditch, there by the copse of Ash, Oak, and a few young Beech […]

Work, yes there must be work: toil enough to keep that balance. And work with these my hands, outdoors where lives the silence that I love as I feel the weather, changing, bringing thus an empathic living for me, in me, and for this life that lives around, emanating as it does in this grass, those trees, the clouds, the soil, the water, those flowers, the very sky itself.”

But, as so often with me, the insights, the feelings, were swept away by not only my tempestuous inner need to do what I considered was then my duty but also by a life-long love of, a desire for, challenges, pontification, and conflict. Such insights, such feelings, were always – sooner or later – so swept away. Until that fateful day one May.

“The defining moment, for me – in terms of understanding myself, in terms of understanding politics and the error of my decades of extremism – was the tragic personal loss of a loved one in May 2006. In the hours following that event I just knew – tearfully knew without words – my own pathetic failure; what I had lost, what was important. Thus there came upon me that day a sense of overwhelming grief, compounded by a remembrance of another personal loss of a loved one thirteen years earlier. For it was as if in those intervening years I had learned nothing; as if I had made the life and the dying and death of Sue, in 1993 – and of what we shared in the years before – unimportant.

I have no words to describe how insignificant, how worthless, I felt that day in May 2006; no words to describe, recall, retell, the remorse, the pain. Suffice now to recount that my life was never, could never be, the same again. Gone – the arrogance that had sustained me for so many experiential decades. Gone – the beliefs, the abstractions, the extremisms, I had so cherished and so believed in.” No Words Of Mine Can Describe The Remorse

How stupid, how very stupid, I have been: for almost all of my adult life. That it required the shock, the personal trauma, of the suicide of the woman I loved to break my arrogance, my selfishness, my self-absorption – and cure me of my need for challenges, pontification, and conflict – most certainly reveals a lot about my character. That apparently jumelle nature of a person who found peace, contentment, in working outdoors with his hands but who also could not, in his weakness, resist that arrogant desire to zealously interfere in the lives of others, to propagandise and proselytize; an interference, a proselytism, born of a hubriatic certainty that he ‘knew’, that he ‘understood’, or that he had discovered the right way (political or religious) of living for others, and therefore had some sort of duty to act, wrecking havoc and causing suffering as he did so, always making excuses for himself. For every and any cause does so hallow havoc.

See with what heat these dogs of Hell advance
To waste and havoc yonder World, which I
So fair and good created, and had still
Kept in that state, had not the folly of Man
Let in these wasteful furies [1]

David Myatt
February 2014

[1] Paradise Lost, Book X, vv. 617-620

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Article source:
David Myatt. Sarigthersa: Some Recent Essays. 2015. ISBN 978-1512137149

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