The Numinous, Ancestral Culture, And Myatt’s Philosophy

Richard Moult - Banais

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The Numinous, Ancestral Culture, And Myatt’s Philosophy

Two recent essays by David Myatt – titled Towards Understanding Ancestral Culture and From Mythoi To Empathy {1} – though short compliment his two recent books Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos and Tu Es Diaboli Ianua since they deal with two of the topics that are central to both books. {2}

In the first essay Myatt explains what he means by the term ‘ancestral culture’ – δίκη understood as fairness, as the balance, the wisdom, that ancestral customs often represent – and in the process clarifies the somewhat obscure passages at the end of his Classical Paganism text, explicitly stating that the modern paganus weltanschauung he wrote about in that book is founded on καλὸς κἀγαθός and thus “on chivalry; on manners; on gentrice romance; and on the muliebral virtues [and] gender equality.”

In the second essay Myatt goes into some detail regarding what he means by the term ‘numinous’, details which are long-overdue and which explicitly distance him from the view of Rudolf Otto in respect of that term. For Myatt, the numinous is a perceiveration, an apprehension resulting from the human faculty of empathy, and therefore in his view goes beyond religion. Indeed, he writes that religions “have not presenced, and do not and cannot presence, the numinous as the numinous can be presenced.” Instead, what does presence the numinous is the knowing that empathy provides which is the move away from mythoi and anthropomorphic deities to “an appreciation of the numinous sans denotatum and sans religion.”

As with almost all of Myatt’s post-2011 philosophical writings the two essays – and indeed the two books – are not only derived from his own philosophical musings and his reflections on his own pathei-mathos, but also contain references to Greco-Roman culture. Which methodology is both a strength and a weakness.

A strength, in that he brings that ancient culture alive almost as if his writings are a bridge to that past and to a future where at least some of the ancient virtues he obviously so admires (such as chivalry) may live again and be melded with the virtues – the muliebral virtues – that he understands his own pathei-mathos and our ‘human culture of pathei-mathos’ have made him appreciate and consider are necessary if we human beings are to change and evolve.

A weakness, in that his writings contain no references to modern philosophies and philosophers and thus lack points of reference for those interested in philosophy as an academic subject. A lack which will undoubtedly deter many from studying Myatt’s somewhat complex – almost labyrinthine and undoubtedly unique – metaphysics. A metaphysics which – based as it is on concepts such as physis, πάθει μάθος, perceiveration, σωφρονεῖν, denotatum, and δίκη – will seem strange, indeed probably alien, to those nurtured on contemporary philosophy.

That said, those who make the effort to get to grips with Myatt’s terminology and who are undeterred that his philosophy of pathei-mathos is scattered in pieces among multiple books and scores of essays and appears still in the process of development, will be rewarded. They will find a most decidedly Western and a decidedly pagan philosophy, rooted in the culture of Ancient Greece and Rome, which manifests the ethos of the West in a manner it has never before been manifest. Not only that, it restores that Western ethos to us, and importantly evolves it, in a distinct philosophical and refreshingly unpolitical way.

That only a few today will appreciate any of this is a sign of our unchivalrous era and of just how few still appreciate the native, the fair, the reasoned, the scholarly, culture of the West subsumed as that culture has been and increasingly is being by the rise of the uncultured, the raucous, ones among us.

R.S & K.S
January 2018

Related:

A Review of Tu Es Diaboli Ianua

Review Of Myatt’s Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos

The Mystic Philosophy of David Myatt
(pdf)

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{1} The two essays by Myatt are available on his weblog and also in the following pdf file: https://regardingdavidmyatt.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/two-essays-v1a.pdf

{2} Both books are available in printed format, and also as gratis open access documents from: https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/2017/10/30/david-myatt-collected-works/


Image credit: Banais, a painting by Richard Moult


Myatt’s Tu Es Diaboli Ianua

Order of Nine Angles

O9A

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We have to admit that we were pleasantly surprised by David Myatt’s new book which has the Latin title Tu Es Diaboli Ianua, a title which he himself translates as You Are The Nexion Of The Deofel. Is the title a hint?

Perhaps so. But no matter. For his book contains some very illuminating statements relevant to our times. First, that his

       “own pathei-mathos certainly indicates that the numinous is primarily a manifestation of the muliebral and can be apprehended through a personal, an interior, balance between masculous and muliebral.”

Second, that

        “a muliebral presencing is or would be manifest in a predominance of female deities; or in a dominant female deity; in legends and myths which celebrate muliebral virtues, such as empathy, sensitivity, gentleness, compassion; and in the perception that personal love should triumph over and above adherence to abstractions. Considered exoterically – not interiorly, not esoterically – a muliebral presencing is manifest in a personal, varied, worship and devotion; in a personal weltanschauung and not in a religion; has no hierarchy; no creed, no article or articles of faith; and no texts whether written or aural.”

Third, that

        “the virtues of personal honour and manners, with their responsibilities, presence the fairness, the avoidance of hubris, the natural harmonious balance, the gender equality, the awareness and appreciation of the divine, that is the numinous.”

Fourth, that

        “In the case of Christianity, while some interpretations of it have in the past century slowly evolved to be somewhat more balanced in respect of the muliebral, it is still primarily a patriarchal presencing.”

Myatt therefore is once again publicly aligning himself with critics of the masculous, with critics of the patriarchal, with critics (both female and male) of the misogynist, status quo.

While this will not endear him to the Magian and their acolytes, nor to the so-called “alt-right” who exemplify misogyny and whose adherents often trumpet the still patriarchal religion of Christianity as “the ethos of the West”, Myatt scholarly cuts through their plebeian assumptions and Old World prejudices and Magian abstractions by providing an intellectual basis for a new, an enlightened, paganism firmly rooted in an understanding of our debt to Greco-Roman, pagan, culture.

A highly recommended book, and Kudos therefore to Myatt.

Three Wyrd Sisters
December 2017 ev.

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David Myatt. Tu Es Diaboli Ianua. 46 pages. 2017. ISBN-13: 978-1982010935


Article source: https://wyrdsister.wordpress.com/2017/12/24/myatts-tu-es-diaboli-ianua/


A Review of Tu Es Diaboli Ianua

De Vita Coelitus Comparanda

The 39 page essay which is spectacularly titled Tu Es Diaboli Ianua {1} is David Myatt’s latest philosophical offering. In his Exordium – a preface by any other name – he outlines the questions which he answers in the essay. The questions are

“is Christianity a suitable presencing of the numinous… If it is not, then could that religion be reformed, by developing a Johannine Weltanschauung…Would such a reformation be a suitable presencing of the numinous, and if not, then what non-Christian alternatives – such as a paganus metaphysics – exist, and what is the foundation of such an alternative.”

He writes that the essay compliments his book Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos.

While his answers are somewhat convoluted and decidedly scholarly and thus other-worldly – given the copious quotations in ancient and Hellenic Greek and his own translations – he raises many interesting issues relevant to the “real world” which most of us inhabit. For he writes that

“the problem is – or so it seems to me – in impersonal written texts. Or, more precisely, in denotatum, and thus in assigning terms – in using words – to describe an apprehension of the numinous. Which leads us to the fundamental difference between a religious apprehension of the numinous – based on received and venerated texts, on exegesis – and the paganus apprehension of the numinous as manifest in Greco-Roman culture.”

And also that

[Greco-Roman] “paganism will be examined for two reasons. Firstly, because it is manifest in a multiplicity of primary sources – from Homer to Hesiod to Cicero and beyond – and secondly because Greco-Roman culture is inextricably bound to the culture of the West and formed the basis for the European Renaissance that emerged in the 14th century, one aspect of which was a widespread appreciation of classical Art, of classical literature, and of texts such as the Corpus Hermeticum.”

Having criticized Christianity, he also declaims that an important aspect of Greco-Roman paganism is a respect for ancestral custom, writing in the last section of the last chapter that the new ‘numinous metaphysics’ he proposes includes “a spiritual and interior (and thus not political) understanding and appreciation of our own Ancestral Culture.”

Which statement about Western ancestral culture is profoundly “politically incorrect” and will be music to the ears of those few intellectuals who still champion the culture of the West.

That said, the essay is not without its problems. One is that given the copious quotations in ancient and Hellenic Greek it is, as with his book Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos, difficult to classify and difficult to discern who the intended audience is. As we wrote in our review of that book, “many of those interested in Western paganism as a new way of life or as a modern, non-Christian, spirituality may find [this essay] too academic or too boring; while those academically interested in such matters will doubtless turn to other authors given Myatt’s experiential Faustian quests, his iconoclasm, his often underserved reputation, and thus his exclusion from academia.”

Personally, we think Myatt is simply making publicly available the result of his metaphysical questioning while also, as with his Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos, intending this new essay for those few Western individuals who, interested in re-discovering their Western pagan heritage, have been looking for the intellectual foundations of that pagan culture.

A second problem is that his conclusion – his description of his new pagan metaphysics – is brief to the point of almost being obscure, occupying as it does a short statement in the final paragraph, with no explanations provided.

But perhaps, given Myatt’s criticism of denotatum (words, and naming, by any other name) and his statement that “the culture of pathei-mathos has moved us, or can move us, beyond anthropomorphic deities, whether male or female; beyond myths and legends; beyond reliance on texts regarded as sacred and/or as divinely inspired; and even beyond the need for denotatum and religion” then this short statement that such “is the numinous” is all that is required.

R.S & K.S
December, 2017

{1} A copy of Myatt’s essay is available here: https://regardingdavidmyatt.files.wordpress.com/2018/06/tua-es-diaboli-ianua.pdf


Image credit: The beginning of the twenty-sixth chapter of the book De Vita Coelitus Comparanda by Marsilii Ficini published in 1489 CE


Nexion Of The Deofel

David Myatt

David Myatt

As a pre-publication draft, the following file is subject to revision and correction of typos.

Tu Es Diaboli Ianua
(pdf)

Contents

° Exordium
° Part I. The Johannine Weltanschauung And The Numinous
° Part II. A Paganus Apprehension
° Part III. Numinous Metaphysics
° Appendix I. Logos Δ. The Esoteric Song
° Appendix II. A Note On The Term Jews In The Gospel of John
° Appendix III. The Human Culture Of Pathei-Mathos

Exordium

Given that the religion termed Christianity has, for over six centuries, been influential in respect of the ethos and spirituality of the culture of the West – often to the extent of having been described as manifesting that ethos and that spirituality – one of the metaphysical questions I have saught to answer over the past forty years is whether that religion is, given our thousands of years old human culture of pathei-mathos, a suitable presencing of the numinous. If it is not, then could that religion be reformed, by developing a Johannine Weltanschauung given that the Gospel According to John – τὸ κατὰ Ἰωάννην εὐαγγέλιον – arguably presents a somewhat different perspective on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth than the three other synoptic Gospels. Would such a reformation be a suitable presencing of the numinous, and if not, then what non-Christian alternatives – such as a paganus metaphysics – exist, and what are the ontology, epistemology, and ethics of such an alternative?

This essay thus compliments my book Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos. As in that book, I have made extensive use of my translations of certain classical authors and of various hermetic texts as well as the Gospel of John, and given that those translations are currently quite accessible I have not except on a few occasions explained my interpretations of certain Greek or Latin terms since those interpretations are explained in the associated commentaries.

As noted elsewhere, I prefer the term paganus – a transliteration of the classical Latin, denoting as it does connection to Nature, to the natural, more rural, world – in preference to ‘pagan’ since paganus is, in my view and in respect of the Greco-Roman ethos, more accurate given what the term ‘pagan’ now often denotes.

The title of the essay, Tu Es Diaboli Ianua – “You Are The Nexion Of The Deofel”, literally, “You are nexion Diabolos ” – is taken from Tertullian’s De Monogamia, written at the beginning of the second century AD.

David Myatt
Winter Solstice 2017


Source: https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/2017/12/23/tu-es-diaboli-ianua/


Selected O9A Articles, 2017

Atu XX

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A selection from the articles, relevant to the pagan and hermetic esotericism – and the practical ‘Dark Arts’ – of the Order of Nine Angles, that have been published in the past year.

O9A: Selected Articles, 2017
(pdf)

Contents:

° Preface
° Some Background To The O9A.
° Masculous And Muliebral: The Sinister Feminine And Homo Hubris.
° A Note Regarding The Sinister-Numinous Aesthetic Of The Order Of Nine Angles.
° On Native Egyptian Influence In The Corpus Hermeticum.
° Re-discovering Western Paganism.
° The Avenging Alastoras.
° On Sorcery In Virgil’s Aeneid.
° Some Thoughts Of Some Solitary Seeker.
° The Peculiar Matter Of Mr Myatt And Mr Long.
° It Can Sometimes Be Informative To Chastise.
° A Note Regarding The Term Numinous


Image Credit:

Richard Moult: Atu XX (Aeon) from Non Est Secundus Quia Unus Est,
a book of Tarot archetypes.


Regarding Western Paganism And Hermeticism

De Vita Coelitus Comparanda

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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. 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.

Regarding Western Paganism And Hermeticism
Third Edition (pdf)

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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.

Appendix I – Concerning ἀγαθός and νοῦς in the Corpus Hermeticum
Appendix II – A Review Of Myatt’s ‘Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos’
Appendix III – A New Pagan Metaphysics.

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N.B. All the articles included in the book were issued under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license, which license allows for both commercial and non-commercial republication under the terms of that license.


Image credit:

The beginning of the twenty-sixth chapter of the book De Vita Coelitus Comparanda by Marsilii Ficini published in 1489 CE. Quomodo per inferiora superioribus exposita deducantur superiora, et per mundanas materias mundana potissimum dona. [How, when what is lower is touched by what is higher, the higher is cosmically presenced therein and thus gifted because cosmically aligned.]


De Vita Coelitus Comparanda

De Vita Coelitus Comparanda

Editorial Note: Given Myatt’s interesting mention, in his 2017 book Classical Paganism and The Christian Ethos, {1} of the work De Vita Coelitus Comparanda by Marsilii Ficini published in 1489 CE, we publish here an extract from ONA Esoteric Notes XLVII – issued in 2016 – and which Esoteric Notes were included in the O9A compilation The Esoteric Hermeticism Of The Order Of Nine Angles {2}.

The illustration above is of the relevant page of Ficini’s book.

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ONA Esoteric Notes XLVII

De Vita Coelitus Comparanda

The twenty-sixth – and last – chapter of the book De Vita Coelitus Comparanda by Marsilii Ficini published in 1489 CE has as its heading Quomodo per inferiora superioribus exposita deducantur superiora, et per mundanas materias mundana potissimum dona. [How, when what is lower is touched by what is higher, the higher is cosmically presenced therein and thus gifted because cosmically aligned.]

As Ficini goes on to explain – Est igitur non solum corporeus, sed vitae insuper et intelligentiae particeps. Quamobrem praeter corpus hoc mundi sensibus familiariter manifestum latet in eo spiritus corpus quoddam excedens caduci sensus capacitatem – the world (mundus) and by extension we ourselves as part of the world are not only material (corporeal) but also imbued with the vitae [Life; Being; ψυχή] and the intelligentiae [apprehension] of that which is above; and that beyond obvious outer appearances there is a hidden, an inner, animating [spiritus] aspect which our ‘lower’, more mundane, senses are unaware of.

All of which, based as it is on the writings of earlier authors such as Iamblichus, is a rather succinct summary of one of the fundamental principles of the weltanschauung that underlies ancient esoteric arts such as alchemy, astrology, and magick. That – as Ficini explained in earlier chapters, such as in chapter sixteen in respect of images/objects/talismans – the animating forces of the cosmos, as symbolized by the seven classical planets and the twelve classical heavenly constellations, not only affect us but can be consciously presenced, drawn down in a beneficial way, into objects and into ourselves.

That the Order of Nine Angles (O9A, ONA) has the same underlying ancient weltanschauung is obvious if the above is restated using the modern terminology of the O9A. Thus, (a) how when what is causal is touched by what is acausal [when a nexion is opened], the acausal is presenced within the causal thus producing changes in the causal; (b) the septenary Tree of Wyrd – with its planetary, stellar, and other esoteric correspondences as outlined in text such as Naos – since it is imbued with the acausal [is a nexion] is a beneficial presencing of those acausal energies that non-initiates are unaware of or disdain.

This ancient – essentially Greco-Roman – weltanschauung formed an essential part of the European Renaissance, as the life and writings of people such as Marsilii Ficini attest. Thus one might well suggest that the Order of Nine Angles embodies – at least in part – the spirit that animated that European Renaissance. An embodiment in the O9A manifest in their elitist and cultured ethos; a cultured ethos which neglected O9A texts such as (i) Culling As Art, (ii) The De-Evolutionary Nature of Might is Right, and (iii) The Gentleman’s and Noble Ladies Brief Guide to The Dark Arts, explain.

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{1} The book is reviewed at https://regardingdavidmyatt.wordpress.com/2017/11/09/review-of-myatts-classical-paganism-and-the-christian-ethos/

{2} The O9A compilation is available as a pdf file from: https://omega9alpha.wordpress.com/2016/03/30/the-esoteric-hermeticism-of-the-order-of-nine-angles/


Background To The O.9.A.

 Mhuiral, by Richard Moult

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Editorial Note: We republish here an interesting if somewhat controversial article. Interesting, in that it makes an interesting point regarding Myatt’s new book and the esoteric philosophy of the ONA. Controversial, in that it makes it seem as if the personal opinion of the author in respect of the ONA supporting National Socialism is “official ONA policy” whereas those conversant with the ONA know that there is not, never was, and never can be any such thing as an “official ONA policy” about anything given its principle of the authority of individual judgment.

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Some Background To The O9A

Perhaps inadvertently, perhaps not, or perhaps just coincidently, the latest book by David Myatt – titled Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos {1} – contains a wealth of information germane to the Occult philosophy and praxis of the Order of Nine Angles (O9A, ONA) and thus may be of interest to those studiously interested in the O9A as well as to those who have read the important O9A collection of texts titled The Esoteric Hermeticism Of The Order Of Nine Angles {2}.

In his new book Myatt provides a clear and scholarly account of both the substance and the essence of classical – Greco-Roman – paganism and of ancient hermeticism, and in the process makes mention of such things as: (i) a septenary anados (familiar to us as the O9A Seven Fold Way), (ii) of humans as a microcosm of the Cosmos (whence the ‘as above, so below’ dictum of Occultism, wonderfully expressed recently – probably coincidently – by Mr Moult in a new Tarot image {3}, and in a Renaissance Latin expression by Marsilii Ficini which Myatt quotes and translates), and (iii) in the fundamental difference between such a European paganism and the religion of Yeshua based as that religion is on the fanciful and hubriatic belief that stories about ancient Hebrews – including stories about Yeshua the Nazarene – are ‘the word of God’. Thus Myatt contrasts the personal Greco-Roman ideal, where ethical values are revealed by the actions and life of real living contemporary individuals, with the Nazarene belief that ethical values can be found in some book (the Bible) and thus in apocryphal (unverifiable and probably propagandistic) stories about dead Hebrews. As Myatt reveals, the Greco-Roman ideal is essentially aristocratic.

Such texts as:
   (i) the O9A collection The Esoteric Hermeticism Of The Order Of Nine Angles,
   (ii) Myatt’s Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos, and his translations of tracts of the Corpus Hermeticum {4}, and
   (iii) the O9A article On Sorcery In Virgil’s Aeneid {5}, and
    (iv) The Avenging Alastoras {6}, and
    (v) Baphomet, An Esoteric Signification {7},
highlight and affirm the fundamental difference between the O9A and other contemporary groups claiming to be of the Left Hand Path and/or satanist.

It is the difference between a detailed, intellectual, esoteric, and aristocratic, non-Hebraic tradition with roots in ancient Western traditions, and between (i) the pretentious pseudo-intellectualism of groups such as the ‘Temple of Set’, and (ii) the egoistic plebeianism of Howard Stanton Levey and his followers, suffused as all such non-O9A occultists are with medieval Hebraic ‘demonology’ and a Hebraic goetic tradition. For them, ‘Satan’ is a symbol of egoism, while for the O9A Satan is correctly understood as a human (and as an acausal) opponent/adversary of those who regard themselves as God’s chosen people: the Hebrews. {8} Which is one reason – and only one reason – why the O9A champions the modern heresies of National Socialism and ‘holocaust revisionism’. {9}

J.B.
2017 ev

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{1} Available as a printed book, ISBN 978-1979599023, and as ‘gratis open access’ pdf file, which book – being issued under a liberal Creative Commons license – we have made available here: https://wyrdsister.files.wordpress.com/2017/11/belief-and-reason-v7a.pdf

{2} Of especial interest are the sections titled ἀρρενόθηλυς, and The Pagan Order Of Nine Angles. Coincidently, Myatt in his Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos mentions the term ἀρρενόθηλυς several times.

The O9A text is (as of November 2017) available as a 32 Mb pdf file at The Esoteric Hermeticism Of The Order Of Nine Angles. (External Link)

{3} https://starred-desert.com/2017/10/31/mhuiral/

{4} Available at: Corpus Hermeticum: Eight Tractates. (External Link)

{5} Sorcery In Virgil’s Aeneid. (External Link)

{6} The Avenging Alastoras. (External Link)

{7} Baphomet: An Esoteric Signification. (pdf) (External Link)

{8} See The Geryne of Satan. (pdf) (External Link)

{9} See We Have To Be Honest. (External Link)

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Image credit: Mhuiral, by Richard Moult. From his book of Tarot archetypes, “Non Est Secundus Quia Unus Est”.

Article source: https://wyrdsister.wordpress.com/2017/11/12/some-background-to-the-o9a/


Review Of Myatt’s Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos

David Myatt

David Myatt

Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos. 2017.
ISBN 978-1979599023. 41 pages.

In the Fall of 2017 David Myatt released extracts from his forthcoming book Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos and which extracts led dozens of individuals interested in Myatt’s works to eagerly await the publication of the book itself given that such extracts seemed to imply that he intended to create a modern, Western, paganism founded on the warrior ethos of ancient Greece and Rome, with Myatt in his extract writing that

“such a modern paganus weltanschauung may also be a means to reconnect those in the lands of the West, and those in Western émigré lands and former colonies of the West, with their ancestral ethos, for them to thus become, or return to being, a living, dwelling, part – a connexion between the past and the future – of what is still a living, and evolving, culture. Perhaps the future of that culture depends on whether sufficient individuals can live by the high personal standards of such a modern paganus weltanschauung.”

However, when Myatt issued the first draft of the complete book in early November 2017 some individuals were disappointed since the promised ‘modern paganus weltanschauung’ seemed to be just a watered-down version of his mystical philosophy of pathei mathos. Myatt, as is his wont, then over several weeks revised this draft many times {1} culminating on November 9th 2017 in a printed version – a so-called ‘second edition’ – together with an updated ‘gratis open access’ pdf version containing the same text and which he made available on his internet blog. {2}

As Myatt notes in the Introduction to the printed edition: “For this Second Edition, I have clarified and extended the text in several places, added a revised version of my essay From Aeschylus To The Numinous Way as an Appendix, and taken the opportunity to correct some typos.”

As the blurb for the book states, it is

“a study in the difference between Christianity and the paganism of Ancient Greece and Rome, evident as that paganism is in the writings of Homer, Aeschylus, Sophocles, Cicero and many other classical authors. A study which includes developing that paganism in a metaphysical way, beyond the deities of classical mythos, thus making such paganism relevant to the modern Western world. A modern development which involves an analysis of the texts of the Corpus Hermeticum.”

The final published work does indeed develop Greco-Roman paganism in a metaphysical way, with Myatt writing in chapter 3 that

“the quintessence of such a weltanschauung, of the paganus ethos, is that ethics are presenced in and by particular living individuals, not in some written text whether philosophical or otherwise, not by some proposed schemata, and not in some revelation from some deity. Which paganus ethics, when evolved – combined with the paganus mysticism evident in the Corpus Hermeticum and the cultural pathei-mathos of the past two millennia presenced through the insight of empathy – leads us to a modern paganus weltanschauung.”

He concludes his study by writing that

“the paganus weltanschauung, ancestral to the lands of the West, that has emerged is one which, shorn of technical, Greek, and metaphysical terms, many may find familiar or already be intuitively aware of […]

[This] awareness of all these connexions is awareness of, and a respect for, the numinous, for these connexions, being acausal, are affective: that is, we are inclined by our physis (whether we apprehend it or not) to have an influence on that which, or those whom, the connexion is to or from. For what we do or do not do, consciously or otherwise, affects or can affect the cosmos and thus the other livings beings which exist in the cosmos, and it is a conscious awareness of connexions and acausal affects, with their causal consequences, which reason, perceiverance, and empathy make us – or can make us – aware of. Which awareness may incline us toward acting, and living, in a noble way, with what is noble known or experienced, discovered, through and because of (i) the personal virtue of honour, evident as honour is in fairness, manners and a balanced demeanour, and (ii) the wordless knowing of empathy, manifest as empathy is in compassion and tolerance.”

For the crux of his argument is that Western paganism differs fundamentally from – and is better than – a revealed religion such as Christianity because in that paganism ethics are “presenced in and by particular living individuals, not in some written text whether philosophical or otherwise, not by some proposed schemata, and not in some revelation from some deity,” in contrast to Christianity whose ethics can be discovered by having to interpret “the word of God” as found in the texts of the Old and New Testaments. He adds that “a reliance on written texts, as in Christianity, may well be a mistake.”

His modern pagan metaphysics therefore balances the Greco-Roman human ideal – which Myatt writes can be expressed in one Greek phrase: καλὸς κἀγαθός – with the insights resulting from millennia of pathei mathos, expressed in Studia Humanitatis, in what he calls ‘the culture of pathei-mathos’. {3}

As a result, the book – replete with copious quotations in Ancient and Hellenistic Greek – is curiously interesting explaining much about Greco-Roman paganism and hermeticism, as well as about Christianity. Yet it is difficult to know who the intended readers are since many of those interested in Western paganism as a new way of life or as a modern, non-Christian, spirituality may find it too academic or too boring; while those academically interested in such matters will doubtless turn to other authors given Myatt’s experiential Faustian quests, his iconoclasm, his often underserved reputation, and thus his exclusion from academia.

Perhaps Myatt intended the book for those few individuals who can or who aspire “to live by the high personal standards of such a modern paganus weltanschauung” because such a paganism may reconnect some of “those in the lands of the West, and those in Western émigré lands and former colonies of the West, with their ancestral ethos”.

R.S & K.S
November, 2017

N.B. As with almost all of Myatt’s printed books, the size is idiosyncratic, being 11 inches x 8.5 inches in format, which is larger than the conventional ‘trade paperback’ (6 inches by 9 inches). In terms of number of pages, 20+ pages should be added to such ‘large format’ books in order to approximate the number of pages in a standard 6 inches by 9 inches paperback.

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{1} In our view Myatt is to be commended for making public his revisions of his texts. As someone recently wrote: “The extracts and subsequent revised extracts from his texts and translations that Myatt has published on his blog over the years provide an interesting insight into the creative process. A process which many authors and academics for some reason seem to want to keep secret. Perhaps some of them want to try and hide their mistakes or how their thoughts and opinions change or evolve as a result of further research, or more inspiration, or more thought.”

{2} https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/2017/11/05/reason-and-belief/

A copy of the pdf file is here: https://regardingdavidmyatt.files.wordpress.com/2017/11/belief-and-reason-v7a.pdf

{3} This ‘culture of pathei mathos’ is one of the central themes of Myatt’s philosophy of pathei-mathos. See his essay Education and the Culture of Pathei-Mathos, included in his 2014 book One Vagabond In Exile From The Gods. The essay is also available here: https://regardingdavidmyatt.wordpress.com/2017/11/10/education-and-the-culture-of-pathei-mathos-2/


This review is issued under the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
(CC BY-ND 4.0) license
and can be freely copied and distributed, under the terms of that license.


Myatt: Reason And Belief

numinous-religion

The pdf document below contains David Myatt’s now completed book Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos and supersedes previously issued extracts. The text was last revised on 9.xi.17.

Classical Paganism And The Christian Ethos
Second Edition

(pdf)

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Source: https://davidmyatt.wordpress.com/2017/11/05/reason-and-belief/