Luciano Pellicani

Mark Warburton passed this masterpiece along (Revolutionary Apocalypse, by Luciano Pellicani). A couple of tiny morsels from its consistently brilliant — and eerily familiar — analysis:

With Puritanism, an absolutely new element was introduced into Western civilisation: (revolutionary) politics as fulfillment of God’s will, with the objective of consciously building “a new human community, that could substitute the lost Eden” and produce a prodigious “change in human nature.” For centuries, politics had been conceived as a “cybernetic art” (Plato) or as a technique for the accumulation of power (Machiavelli). From the Puritan cultural revolution on, politics was conceived as a soteriological practice, dominated by an eschatological tension toward the Kingdom of God on earth, therefore as a calling, whose methodical objective was to overturn the world in order to purify it. The slogan originally used by the Taborites and the Anabaptists was revived: “Permanent warfare against the existing, in the name of the New World.”


An all-powerful state is essential for communism, since the total destruction of civil society is the only way to destroy capitalism. By civil society we mean the “society of industry, of general competition, of freely pursued private interest, of anarchy, of natural and spiritual individuality alienated from self.” But since capitalism — Lenin’s definition is correct — is a phenomenon that is generated spontaneously, whenever the ideological power relaxes its watch, the effort to prevent mammon from raising its head must be permanent. It is a matter of annihilation that requires mass terror, since the main enemy of communism is “widespread petit bourgeois spontaneity.” Thus, the “revolutionary project challenges the normal course of history.” It is a huge effort to prevent humanity from moving spontaneously toward a bourgeois society. This is only achieved through permanent terror.

If Pellicani is already being widely discussed in the reactosphere, I’ve missed it. My guess: he’ll be considered an indispensable reference by this time next year.

January 3, 2014admin 49 Comments »


49 Responses to this entry

  • Thos Ward Says:

    Awesome find, thank you!


    Posted on January 3rd, 2014 at 1:42 pm Reply | Quote
  • Orlandu84 Says:


    Applied immanent eschatology = revolution as the state = reign of terror!

    Obviously, I have not read the whole work, but does Pellicani differentiate the ancient view of time (cycles) with the modern one (the movement to apocalypse)?


    Mark Warburton Reply:

    I haven’t read it all either – I just don’t have time. Doing a PHD with the library genesis project and scribd at your fingertips doesn’t allow it. I’d imagine he does make that distinction. Taubes does, Schmitt does, Voeglin, not sure. I don’t think you can talk about gnosticism and the political without moving away from the natural necessity cyclicity as the predominant mindset. You need dualism, you need the tension of insidious cataclysms. Regardless of where you are on the political-(gnostic)-spectrum, that shit gives things momentum.


    Posted on January 3rd, 2014 at 2:03 pm Reply | Quote
  • Mai La Dreapta Says:

    Excellent quotes. I shall commence reading the whole thing as soon as I find the time.


    Posted on January 3rd, 2014 at 2:23 pm Reply | Quote
  • spandrell Says:

    With Puritanism, an absolutely new element was introduced into Western civilisation: (revolutionary) politics as fulfillment of God’s will

    I think the Cathars started that. And I’d say post-reformation Europe politics were pretty Maquiavellian, and increasingly so.

    I get the urge to use the word soteriological, but people should get their history right. Then again that’s perhaps too much to ask of a socialist journalist.
    Funny how the first line on his wiki is “raised by a single mother”


    admin Reply:

    You’re just being randomly grouchy at this point …


    spandrell Reply:

    Saying that political messianism started with the Reformation is pure illiteracy. Protestant polities weren’t even progressive for the most part! All they did was nationalize the churches and go on strengthening the absolute rule of the King.

    That guy is a lightweight, as his career choice makes obvious. I understand the need for good sources, but accepting any European with a decent vocabulary is what leads to patent madness such as Evola worship.


    admin Reply:

    He starts his story about political messianism before the reformation.

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Strengthening the absolute rule of the king was a progressive position at one time.

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Not just the Cathars, there was something in the air around that time. Look at Joachim of Fiore, who was an ur-progressive if ever there was one. He even sounds like a straightforward communist with his talk of the eventual withering of the Church (state).

    What is disquieting about this is that Spengler identifies that same time period as the time when the West began. If so, then the progressive impulse is part of the fundamental DNA of the West (if you give credence to Spengler at all, it goes beyond a mere coincidence of date, of course, since his description of the fundamental Faustian impulses of the West are also pretty coincident with progressivism). But only progressives believe it is possible or desirable to alter the fundamental aspects of your own culture. So neo-reaction is probably engaged in a logical contradiction in trying to get rid of progressivism. It can only be restrained, managed, adapted to, channelled . . . never destroyed by design.


    admin Reply:

    This is excellent, but over-hastily short-circuited in “logical contradiction”. The diagram of any homeostatic loop is isomorphic with a ‘contradiction’ (self-cancelation), so paradoxes need not be immediately ruinous. Instead, they can be meta-stable problems, open to elaboration. That’s what modernity is, and perhaps also the neoreaction within it.


    Igitur Reply:


    “Meta-stable problems, open to elaboration”.

    1) Do you keep restating Hegelian dialectics time and again, or is my conceptual scope too narrow? and if the former,

    2) Who, in addition to Ray Brassier, should I call for one of those TV drama finger-wagging interventions?

    admin Reply:

    @ Igitur — I’m restating Hegelian dialectics only insofar as Hegel gets cybernetics right, which he generally doesn’t.

    piwtd Reply:

    Yes, this is exactly the first thing I thought when I first heard of the neoreaction. There are two clearly contradictory sentiments. Should a white man protect his civilization, which is the pinnacle of human achievement while lesser races never progressed beyond barbarism in comparison, or are the barbarians who live in their traditional societies with their traditional values the sane ones while the west went mad with liberalism? This is the exact same paradox except inverted as when white liberal feminists argue between themselves whether veiling of Muslim women is patriarchal oppression of whether criticizing it is racist cultural imperialism.


    VXXC Reply:

    “never destroyed ”

    Let’s give it a try anyway.


    Posted on January 3rd, 2014 at 2:26 pm Reply | Quote
  • Peter A. Taylor Says:

    I’ve only gotten as far as the Preface, and I’m already confused. Is the gnostic revolution the fulfillment of God’s will, or a result of being “an orphan of God”? Have the revolutionaries come to serve the living God or to cope with His death?

    One of Robin Hanson’s “Isn’t about” statements is “Religion isn’t about God.” Do we have to strip God out of Christianity in order to understand Christianity?


    spandrell Reply:

    Do you think the Trinity had a profound effect on European society?


    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    No. It was a stupid compromise hammered out by a Roman government-supported standards committee (as I think Eric Raymond said, more or less). You could add Mary, as the Catholics more or less did, and it wouldn’t make any real difference. It’s just some BS that you’re required to pay lip service to in order to be considered a member of the club.


    Posted on January 3rd, 2014 at 4:47 pm Reply | Quote
  • Peter A. Taylor Says:

    What is the relationship between Christianity and Gnosticism? Is Christian Gnosticism a Christian heresy or a Gnostic wolf in Christian lamb’s clothing? If they are exchanging DNA with one another, does that mean that the entire Western religious tradition is a single species for cladistic purposes? Or that the species are individual (fiercely urgent this week) political causes like gay marriage, and Progressivism is like a farm where both ducks and pigs are raised, and the avian and swine flu viruses mix freely?


    Handle Reply:

    Gnosticism predated Christianity and emerged from a more primitive state into its semi-modern form as part of the great theological seethings and religious cross-fertilization – especially with the Hellenic philosophical rationalism tradition – that consumed the Near East for several centuries after Alexander’s conquests. For a while it had an immense following in the Eastern Jewish community.

    It seems to me that during the period when Christianity is supposed to have emerged, there were actually countless Gnostic-Jewish-Christian-ish sects that split and recombined into equally countless sub-movements which, only later, after the considerable dust settled, and a lot of people killed, were historically revised and reconciled into seemingly coherent and separate cladistic families. Those ‘clear lineages’ are most likely purposefully created illusions of consistency, like Deuteronomy, with actual messy history being a kind of ‘apochrypha’.

    Judaism, in particular, eventually pushed most (but not all!) of its authentic Gnostics ‘underground’ with the rapid strengthening and spread of (‘modern’) Rabbinical / Talmudic Judaism after the death of Hadrian. Maimonides, though he had some sympathies with Gnosticism, was influential enough to achieve a nearly complete victory in the 12th century for Rabbinicalism, amongst European Jews particularly, though some Gnostic numerology elements survived in Kabbala traditions. I’d argue that Kabbala is not ‘real’ Gnosticism, more of a Cryptonomicism.

    That’s what you get when you had a bunch of natural math geniuses who only have one career path and one book to work with. They start … deriving. Like Supreme Court Justices doing impossible hermeneutics on the Constitution (or the protagonist of the movie Pi), they became adept at finding ‘the secret path’ to whatever it was they were looking for. And today we have a lot of Jewish lawyers. Huh.

    I heartily recommend Jonas’ The Gnostic Religion: The Message of the Alien God & the Beginnings of Christianity. It’s dated (1958) and doesn’t include a lot of the results of the time-consuming analysis from the material recovered in more recent archaeological finds like the Nag Hammadi, but it’s still an excellent introduction.

    His presentation was used by, but also differs at several points, Eric Voegelin is his more political interpretation in Science, Politics and Gnosticism. That was one of Auster’s favorite books and he said it influenced him greatly.

    I think the essence of what I term ‘Authentic’ Gnosticism is the red pill from The Matrix. That what we think is our ‘material reality’ is in fact a kind of giant illusion, and the guy we’re supposed to believe is God is actually not the True God, but just ‘The Creator’ (or Demiurge) – a pretender who created this illusion to entrap us and alienate us from the True God.

    Somehow this serves the pretender / creator God’s purposes, but what those purposes are is also esoteric. So we are all Keanu Reeves in the Matrix with a *nearly* (but not quite) omnipotent and omniscient evil overlord, except this was a very popular thing that whole communities believed about 2,200 years ago. Except for the whole ‘Bioelectricity’ and leather-fetish thing – they didn’t see that coming.

    Our bodies – including our brains – are flesh composed of this evil substance and that is where all our animalistic desires come from that tempt us away from achieving ‘enlightenment’. The theme of most normal people believing whatever they are exposed to being ‘sleepers’ or ‘sleepwalkers’, with a few people – Gnostics – who have ‘awakened’ and know only that what they thought they ‘knew’ was lies.

    One of the interesting questions the ‘evil illusion of the material world’ is supposed to answer is that of ‘theodicy’ and the question of the origin of ‘evil’ in the world. Why would a loving, all-powerful and benevolent God create us and the world such that plenty of evil, unjust suffering happens all the time. the Christians (and others) tend to tie themselves up in complex knots trying to answer that question. The Gnostics say something like Clint Eastwood in Unforgiven, ‘Deserve’s got nothing to do with it.’ They say, “Easy! The Creator is not God and is neither omnipotent nor benevolent. The world is ‘evil’ in the sense that its materiality is utterly amoral without ethical content or importance. ‘Suffering’ happens in nature all the time as a result of natural processes from which we are not immune and has no meaning to it.” Some Gnostics even embrace the no-free-will view, and you see here a kind of proto-Nihilism.

    The red pill is the the first step to being let in on the esoteric ‘Secret Knowledge’, and the rest of ‘Authentic’ Gnosticism is the accumulated project of research, inquiry, development, and technology trying to get to the rest of the Truth that is being kept hidden from us by the Power Over Us. The ‘mood’, if I may, is very much paranoid and skeptical – ‘Nullius in Verba’. You can’t trust anyone or any claim without independent reason and contemplation because everybody is constantly trying to manipulate you, especially God.

    A very ‘Dark Enlightenment’ theme, I would think. That why I think this kind of gnosticism is probably the answer, if there is one, to your and Spandrel’s search for ‘a new religion’. Then again, I’m very biased, so you can’t trust me either.

    Ha! See what I did there? That’s what it feels like to be an old Gnostic. Right about now, it’d be a good anti-authoritarian (credential-tarian? Cathedral-tarian?) meme to start spreading through the populace. It kind of already is, but it needs a better name and reputation than ‘cooky conspiracy nut theories’. On other other hand, you wouldn’t want everybody to be so skeptical all the time they would never be loyal or obedient without coercion. It’s tough to solve for equilibrium, and maybe you can’t – just endlessly oscillating pendulums.


    Puzzle Pirate (@PuzzlePirate) Reply:

    “A very ‘Dark Enlightenment’ theme, I would think. That why I think this kind of gnosticism is probably the answer, if there is one, to your and Spandrel’s search for ‘a new religion’. Then again, I’m very biased, so you can’t trust me either.”

    I don’t know if a fully ‘new religion’ is what’s needed or would even be accepted. Maybe keep the outer trappings of Christianity but change some (a lot?) of the inner workings. I think Machiavelli said something like this about how when Rome changed from Republic to Empire they kept the old outer trappings of the Republic so people would accept that it hadden’t changed.

    And you’re right about the problem of evil in Christianity. It was one of the early things to really turn me off to it.

    How about this re-write: the Fall of Man in the Garden was actually us leaving the *real* Earth God had prepared for us and this Earth is actually the top layer of Hell which is why really nasty shit happens. Hmm… that has holes in it too… sometimes I really don’t understand how Christianity lasted so long as it has with this huge problem of evil.


    VXXC Reply:

    Evil = Free Will.

    And nature.

    Handle Reply:

    Gnosticism is as much as a ‘red-pill mood’ or ‘perspective’ as it is a religion. As soon, it can be seen as ‘compatible with’ or ‘a type of’ existing religions, or no religion. There has been Greek Mythological and Rationalist Gnosticism, Jewish Gnosticism, Christian Gnosticism, and so on.

    Again, the idea is that whatever tradition you come from, you start to realize that you are surrounding by a matrix (heh) of lies, untruths, and manipulations for the purpose of your exploitation. After the shock and dismay wear off, your mission in life becomes self-liberation-through-enlightenment and seeking the secret knowledge from which you have been kept (‘Alienated from Truth’).

    The God you were taught to worship by the liars is, naturally, a false God, a pretender and inadequate substitute for the True God.

    I could go on, but you get the point. One could phrase this mood or perspective in Christian terms, or secular terms, or futurist terms with the hyper-AI that optimizes intelligence as the True God, etc.

    In fact, in a way, that’s already been done here. We all have that Gnostic red-pill mood and perspective about us to some degree or another; recognizing the falsehoods, hating the seductive pretty lies and the liars that have wrongfully captured the Throne of Truth.

    Anyway, the nearly defunct freemasons already put the G symbol everywhere, so there’s that.

    Puzzle Pirate (@PuzzlePirate) Reply:

    “The God you were taught to worship by the liars is, naturally, a false God, a pretender and inadequate substitute for the True God.”

    The One True God shall drive out the Many.

    “Anyway, the nearly defunct freemasons already put the G symbol everywhere, so there’s that.”

    Any idea why orgs like the Freemasons and Knights of Columbus melted down to nothing the way they did?

    Peter A. Taylor Reply:


    I read your comment-32271 as meaning that Gnosticism is a separate religion from Christianity, what I described as a wolf in lamb’s clothing. Do you have a dog in the cladistics fight? I’m used to thinking in terms of the “death of God”, and a hermit crab occupying the shell of a dead nautilus. The “wolf in sheep’s clothing” may be a more helpful metaphor. These two metaphors strike me as complementary rather than exclusive. The “wolf” infiltrates Christianity while God lives, and the “hermit crab” takes over after God dies. Neither metaphor requires horizontal gene transfer.

    Part of my problem with cladistics is that religions are fuzzy sets, and cladograms depend on crisp logic.

    Regarding Gnosticism as a template for my new religion:

    Many years ago, my wife organized a “Pagan” lecture series at our church, including one by the local branch of the Ordo Templi Orientis. One of the things that really rubbed me the wrong way is the OTO’s attitude towards secrecy. UUs typically regard secrecy as something used to protect abusers. Non-UU Pagans (and other religious minorities) tend to view secrecy as something that protects innocent weirdos from persecution by the Normals. I can well imagine that politically incorrect religions and quasi-religions may soon have to become underground movements like the early Christians, but it really doesn’t go down smooth. Also, religions that keep secrets are hard to propagate.

    I really have my heart set on a naturalistic religion, one that can tolerate theism, but doesn’t depend on it. Can we form a naturalistic version of Gnosticism, with the government as the demiurge? What would you use as the True God?


    Handle Reply:

    Well, I blog with a pseudonym and I value the (illusion of) anonymity, because I think if it was just a little easier to out me then I’d be hounded and fired and my family imperiled if certain people got mad at me and tried to intimidate my employer. So I can see OTO’s point.

    On the other hand I don’t consider myself an ‘innocent weirdo’. I think even thought-crime eccentrics (I plead guilty) need a little bit of veil and shadow in their public personas to survive these days.

    I really have my heart set on a naturalistic religion, one that can tolerate theism, but doesn’t depend on it. Can we form a naturalistic version of Gnosticism, with the government as the demiurge? What would you use as the True God?

    I agree with this plan, let’s flesh it out stream-of-consciousness style for some entertainment. We can all be DE Gnostic Dark-Cardinals (or ‘Sith Lords’ or whatever).

    Let me invent a term that attempts an adaptation of the ‘gnostic’ attitude, mood, perspective, and imagery mega-metaphor to the present situation, and which I claim (upon no basis at all – yet) is ‘compatible’ with whatever particularist tradition one likes to hold dear. “Reconstructionist Pan-Gnosticism.” Needs work … but I’ll go with it for now. RPG for short.

    You introduce it is a kind of ‘decoration’ – an enjoyable way you are supposed to look at ugly, taboo things and be part of the secret-taboo-discussing community, and take seriously but not too seriously. ‘Oh, ye exiled desert wanderer, give thanks for you have found an oasis in the wilderness that will satisfy your thirst. Drink from this well and it will refresh you. But take care not to fall into it, for you will surely drown and be lost to us forever.’

    Your question is which entities or ‘actors’ do we choose to assign to play the stock roles and fit the pattern relationships in the Gnostic mega-metaphor grand drama narrative.

    1. Demiurge / Creator / Pretender God / Thought-Prison Warden / Alienator From Truth / Matrix Architect (who wants you to take the blue pill and embrace the ‘false’ simulation)

    So, the way the term is used around these parts, this is essentially ‘The Cathedral’ – the combination of the government and state bureaucratic apparatus, the academy, the education institutions, and all the other intellectual wordsmiths and verbal professionals with their various forms of influence over public ideas and beliefs. And the way they all interact and tend to buttress, bolster, and reinforce each other.

    The Demiurge has certainties and mysteries. What is ‘certain’ is that the Demiurge has somehow overthrown the True God within the Demiurge’s own material domain and ‘Stolen the Throne’ we look to. It thus has tremendous influence over what people think is ‘reality’, and it lies, manipulates, and brainwashes all the time to support the widespread adherence to that delusion, persecutes ‘heretics’ (the ‘sticks’), is a ‘jealous God’ that will not tolerate any other Gods, and is very much associated with a focus on materialism and hedonic pleasure (the ‘carrots’) as a temptation to distract one away from any instinct to search for Truth beyond the Official Orthodoxy.

    What is ‘mysterious’ is how the Demiurge ‘spontaneous distributed conspiracy’ organizes and coordinates itself, what its motivations are, why is obsesses over certain subjects, and why it changes position over time. What is Its nature? Where did It come from? What does It want? Where is It trying to take us? Why? When does It lie and when does it reliably give the truth?

    2. Esoteric Secret Knowledge that brings you into ‘Gnosis’. A. The first Red Pill is that you are living in a matrix. ‘The Sleeper Awakens’ B. The second stage of Gnosis is what the other awakened members of the gnostic community have learned in their investigations and contemplations about the workings of Demiurge, and the various red pills they have discovered. C. The ultimate stage is the Truth about the True God.

    As an aside – another piece of typical imagery used is being ‘saved by another’ (from ignorance and lies), that is, an ‘angel’-to-man, or a master-to-apprentice, or really, anyone on a higher level of Truth, reaching downward into the Demiurge realm and pool of delusion and grabbing an upward reaching arm to lift them up to the higher level ‘towards heaven’. Kind of a discovery / recruiting / conversion / salvation moment. ‘I read this thing on the internet and it suddenly opened my eyes.’

    The story I’ve heard is that this image was so moving that early Gnostics invented modern forearm or hand-shaking (as opposed to traditional intimate embracing or stand-off bowing) as an imitation of the image as their form of greeting to a each other, and that this, somehow, had spread and carried on until present day. I’m not sure how true that is, but it’s a nice story that I enjoy, and the imagery seems powerful to me.

    3. True God – this is the tricky part. Gnosticism purposefully insulates itself against questions regarding this because it is a ‘mystery’ or ‘secret’ that has purposefully been hidden from us and which, like buried fossils, you have to gradually dig up to uncover a truth that seems ‘unbelievable’ at first blush. ‘Giant lizards once ruled the Earth? What, like a million Godzillas everywhere? Yeah, right.”

    So, it’s open to perpetual investigation, discussion, and debate. We all have to keep trying to discover it, no matter to which level we’ve attained, and the journey – and the feeling that one ought to spend one’s life supporting that journey’s mission – is more important than the destination, and the struggle helps develop us. I find this struggle-journey-mission, not a destination, idea very attractive.

    That being said, a good first approximation of the Truth that would lead you to the True God is whatever heresies from its Orthodoxy that the Demiurge is most obsessively and fanatically trying to crush.

    But besides logic and observed evidence, there is also tolerance of a certain amount of ‘insight’ tailored to the needs of the individual. It is this element that allows a Pan-Gnosticism to be ‘personalized’ and compatible with distinct particular traditions and heritages and preferences on the meta, transcendent level. I think it could tolerate theology and naturalism.

    Those traditions could be seen like multiple equally plausible seeds in a genetic algorithm program – a good place to start the evolutionary progress process towards the Truth. If you don’t plant the seed in the child, the Demiurge will merely claim that fertile soil. The rough analogy is to the Ottoman Empire with it’s strong subsidiarity (also ‘confederalist’) Millet system that tolerated many communities having distinct theological cultures within the broader imperial system. Another analogy could be to the National Guard. Each state has its own men and equipment and regulations, and the soldiers always wear the state patch and usually work for their Governor and their own communities, but are still members of a large system and can be called upon to work together for the sake of the nation and also not fight against each other.

    RPG could say something like, ‘Those traditions or preferences came about to be the seeds that would fit and be suited for different kinds of individuals. They are all ‘valid’ even though incompatible in ‘detail’. Of course, being ‘transcendent’ and preserving particularism without sliding into Unitarianism creates a difficult tension. But the general idea is a kind of HBD extension, people are different and so they need different theologies and different cultures, traditions, and communities which ‘support’ those theologies to lead them in the tailored way they require towards The Good and The Truth.

    RPG would embrace the paradox that you can’t tell people about The One Secret Truth too early or you’ll spoil the whole development process, which requires the healthy operation of a loose confederacy all those distinct communities (while hopefully keeping them from murdering each other). Giving children Unitarian Universalism too early doesn’t build up any ‘resistance’ or ‘acquired immunity’ and plays into the leveling hands of the Demiurge, who desperately wants to crush any tradition that provides such an inoculation. The traditional Gnostic imagery is that the ‘inner light’ is ‘the spark of fire within’ (there’s always a lot of ‘inner fire’ as ‘spirit’ imagery), and people need to be raised within a particular setting to properly ‘fan the flames and ignite the instinct to journey towards Truth’, lest the spark go out an be extinguished by the Demiurge’s lures and inveiglements.

    Also, the Gnostic metaphor says that the whole point of the structure of what we thought was ‘reality’ was to ‘alienate’ us from the True God and deceive and trick us about it by every means imaginable. That is the prison which we inhabit, and there is plenty of ‘bait in the trap’.

    It is possible to tempt or discourage most people from ‘the search’ and keep them ‘asleep and drunk from the wine of the material world.’ But the Demiurge knows that it’s human nature for at least some people to doubt the lies (this is supposed to be your ‘inner light’, the part of the True God within you that gives you the instinct and urge to seek the higher truth) and occasionally resist all the various social pressures, temptations and influences and rebel against its doctrines and go looking elsewhere for alternatives.

    And so it has to cleverly plant and ‘tolerate’ the ‘neutered oppositions’ as fly-paper honeypots to attract and make-harmless the most likely source of opposition that could lead to ultimate disaster, ‘a mass awakening’, that would dislodge it from the Stolen Throne. Kind of a ‘judgment day’ or ‘Eschaton’.

    Part of the this honeypot effort was to alter, distort, or promulgate false interpretations of the Holy Texts (Bibles, Constitutions, etc) including both the Law and History.

    So, you still have to raise children within one of those mythological traditions of ‘opposition’ for adequate ‘priming’, but at some point of sufficient maturity you bring them into the fold and give them ‘the secret knowledge’ and a more adult perspective on their belief system (and). At first there is dismay, shock and confusion. “What am I to believe if I can’t trust any of this?”

    But after going through the Kubler-Ross stages of grief, one can being the mission to liberate oneself from the lower forms of one’s particular tradition and commence the journey towards Truth. This image will be especially helpful in recruiting quasi-allies and members of neutered oppositions; Libertarians, Conservatives, etc. “Hey, yeah, that was cool for you then and a fine place to start. But it’s time to realize what’s wrong with it or incomplete about it, and move on to something better. Not necessarily to ‘reject’ it completely, but accept it as only a first step and reject it as the end-point. You’re old enough to swim in the deep end now – you can come and join the party.”

    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    That was stupid. We already have a religion that treats the government as the demiurge. It’s Libertarianism. What we need is one that takes a balanced view.

    @Handle: 1. The Cathedral works as a demiurge.

    2. I think I mis-stated the OTO’s position. Many Pagans are afraid of persecution. The OTO, I think, would also say that their magic is too powerful and dangerous to be allowed into the hands of the unwashed masses, like ICBM missile launch codes. I take more of a “scientific” attitude, that with few exceptions, I want all supposed knowledge to be laid out where everybody and their dog can critique it, because otherwise I don’t trust it not to be full of stupidity and lies.

    3. As for God, that sounds like an invitation to a discussion of meta-ethics. Where’s James Goulding when we need him?

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    About 100% the opposite of a dark enlightenment theme, I would think. A form of gnosticism has taken over our social world, and the dark enlightenment is the project of recognizing that reality hasn’t gone away just because we’re all supposed to have stopped believing in it.


    Lesser Bull Reply:

    In other words, gnosticism offers a regular ol’ light enlightenment, not a dark one.

    Handle Reply:

    That the word gnosticism is used to mean ‘reality rejection’ in two different ways I admit is confusing. Voegelin uses it the way you do above, but Jonas uses it the way I do below:

    The metaphor imagery is that there is indeed an underlying reality that doesn’t go away just because you’ve been manipulated into believing a falsehood. It’s not that ‘reality’ goes away when you stop believing it. It’s that your implanted delusions about reality go away when you stop believing in the lies.

    Applied to the modern context, the propagated falsehood is the egalitarian-universalism social-justice Blue Orthodoxy of the progressives. The normal person goes through his life ‘sleepwalking’ after absorbing the indoctrination. A gnostic is someone who has swallowed a red pill and becomes aware of the true reality behind the false reality.

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    But we aren’t inventing the term gnostic. It has a history, and in that history the actual gnostics rejected materiality and basic experience as a delusion, in favor of something ineffable and beyond. The demiurge was supernatural, the Cathedral isn’t. In gnosticism your very senses deceive you.

    Replacing progressive gnosticism with some other kind of gnosticism would just be a swap between Mr. Jones and the pig Napoleon. To gnostics the noose.

    Posted on January 3rd, 2014 at 5:19 pm Reply | Quote
  • fake_username Says:

    Excellent find. The first two chapters limn the genesis of the academic Cathedral quite well and provide invaluable theoretical and historical underpinnings for the reaction against the contemporary intellectual class. This alone is a satisfactory raison d’être for a social and political history, because a comprehensive account of millenarianism and eschatology would require extension back into tribal organization, roving bands, and perhaps the biological foundations of human behavior. My knowledge of European history is very limited, but even a cursory glance over Chinese history will reveal that neither of those predispositions, even of an explicitly egalitarian variety, were uniquely European creations.

    It’s certainly a work deserving of attention.


    Posted on January 3rd, 2014 at 6:49 pm Reply | Quote
  • Alex Says:

    I wonder if defining gnosticism as ‘red-pill thinking’ risks collapsing useful distinctions. A bit like cladistic analysis: a thing is what it diverged from, so Neoreaction is Protestantism because the Cathedral is Protestant. But Protestantism diverged from Catholicism so we are all cladistically Catholics; and Catholicism is Judaism which is paganism, which is ? To privilege cultural descent over doctrinal content follows the familiar Landian pattern of elevating means over ends, function over judgement, information over meaning &c. But as has been pointed out, doctrinal content has been at the root of these divergences; if it to be disregarded, why fight the Cathedral?

    So NR is ‘gnostic’ in the sense that an official representation of reality is seen to be a lie. But the acolytes of the Cathedral share just this apprehension: the Matrix is the Patriarchy and Social Justice is the red pill that dispels its racist, sexist, heteronormative, transphobic illusions. (Social Justice Warriors often explicitly refer to the Patriarchy as “the Matrix”.)

    For Christians, the Matrix is the ‘saeculum’, ‘the age’, ‘the world’, what St Paul called the “dark aeon” in thrall to sinister spiritual “cosmocrats”. Jesus is the red pill. Augustine’s biographer Peter Brown writes of the early Church in Rome:

    It was believed that the coming of Christ to earth had brought “the present age” to an end. The duty of every Christian was to make His victory plain and to hasten the collapse of the power of the “Rulers of the present age”. The “present age” was the product of an overriding demonic tyranny, to which human beings and, indeed, the universe as a whole had come to be subjected. Christ’s victory over death had brought about a stunning reversal of the crushing flow of irreversible negative processes that made the tyranny of the demons seemingly irresistible on earth. The problem, then, was where precisely to locate the outward visible sign of the huge, inward mutation that had brought freedom to a humanity locked in the grip of gigantic forces of evil. Tertullian put the question to the radicals with his accustomed brutal clarity. How could ordinary human beings, men and women “subject still to doctors and to debt,” dare to claim to have achieved, in the narrow compass of their cramped lives, the new freedom which, so they said, had become available to them with the coming of Christ? “How can you possibly think you are freed from the Ruler of this Age, when even his flies still crawl all over you?”

    Perhaps there is a distinction to be made between gnosis — apprehension of reality — and gnosticism, the stubborn denial of constituted reality, whether the classical gnostic rejection of material existence as irredeemably evil or latterday attempts to immanentise the eschaton. The Cathedral is gnostic in the pejorative Voegelinian sense, seeking to efface the perceived causes of human misery: class, sex, race, poverty, religion, society, law. (Features misperceived as bugs.) NR seeks the true gnosis which would extirpate Cathedral gnosticism and its concomitant antinomianism.


    Handle Reply:

    Exactly – a Tournament of Gnosticisms.


    Posted on January 4th, 2014 at 2:02 pm Reply | Quote
  • admin Says:

    The whole conversation above is utterly enthralling. I’ll do whatever I can over time to make space for its future development.


    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    Refresh my memory. What is the motivation behind cladistics? I see the propaganda angle. What would you do differently if you viewed religions as ecosystems rather than species?


    admin Reply:

    There is a whole skein of motivation, with many obscure and yet-to-be isolated threads. Main strand, though, can probably be summarized as dealing with Milton — or, in other words, getting beyond crude condescension viz Puritanism. This dispels the fake (cheap) detachment of the Neoreactionary critique. Outsideness has to be earned.


    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    I’m not sure I understood that. It sounds like Ducharme’s Axiom:

    “If you view your problem closely enough you will recognize
    yourself as part of the problem.”

    fotrkd Reply:

    As I walked through the wilderness of this world, I lighted on a certain place, where was a den; and I laid me down in that place to sleep: and as I slept I dreamed a dream. I dreamed, and behold I saw a man clothed with rags, standing in a certain place, with his face from his own house, a book in his hand, and a great burden upon his back. I looked, and saw him open the book, and read therein; and as he read, he wept and trembled: and not being able longer to contain, he brake out with a lamentable cry; saying, ‘What shall I do?’

    In this plight therefore he went home, and restrained himself as long as he could, that his wife and children should not perceive his distress; but he could not be silent long, because that his trouble increased: wherefore at length he brake his mind to his wife and children; and thus he began to talk to them: ‘O my dear wife,’ said he, ‘and you the children of my bowels, I your dear friend am in myself undone, by reason of a burden that lieth hard upon me: moreover, I am for certain informed that this our city will be burned with fire from Heaven, in which fearful overthrow, both myself, with thee, my wife, and you my sweet babes, shall miserably come to ruin; except (the which yet I see not) some way of escape can be found, whereby we may be delivered.
    – Opening of The Pilgrim’s Progress, John Bunyan

    Posted on January 4th, 2014 at 3:36 pm Reply | Quote
  • VXXC Says:

    O/T but…

    Rush Limbaugh is no longer with Cumulus on WABC – the Flagship where he broke out.

    Now he’s at WOR.

    Hannity’s slot has been replaced on the radio by Michael Savage. Who is sui generis but lives up to his Nom d’air. [He’s actually Jewish].

    Now this is ostensibly about money but… no one is a replacement for Rush in Talk radio in terms of ratings, hence business. They tried to replace Rush with Huckabee …which is a loser with men. Nice white ladies like Huckabee.

    He’s the perfect Tea Party Trust candidate. I mean the CHEKA Trust.

    Replacing Hannity with Savage…um…er…that’s replacing Fr. Coughlin with Joseph Goebbels. Unless it’s an unforced unthinking error I don’t get it.

    Savage will be a reactionary the instant he thinks it’s in his or mmm…ethnic interest. He’s very pro-America. As in electrify the fence, round up the illegals…and he coined “Liberalism is a mental disease”.

    Lew Dickey Jr, CEO of Cumulus has the Blue Harvard MBA resume.

    I think watch this space but I still don’t get it….

    BTW Limbaugh began turning hard right and mmm…shall we say tapping into game [sandra fluke] and the underlying HBD current of it’s OK to advocate for your race at least a year ago.

    No enemies to the right save Quislings. With the exception of Huckabee none of the above are.


    Posted on January 4th, 2014 at 4:47 pm Reply | Quote
  • piwtd Says:

    If I may quote my own comment from one of the previous posts: “The problem with gnosis is that thinking you have it is the favorite instrument of Demiurge to keep you away from it. The Matrix is a matrix of pseudo-gnoses revealing to you your slavery in such a way that thinking you are progressing on the path of liberation you are in fact tightening the chains. Every matrix presents itself as the red pill.” Plato’s cave is a movie theater and they are playing The Matrix.

    The confusion around here whether DE is a version of Gnosticism or whether Gnosticism is the grand sin of our civilization is a nice illustration of the convoluted nature of the general confusion.


    Posted on January 4th, 2014 at 7:22 pm Reply | Quote
  • Muad'Dib Says:

    The Gnostic problem is not new-

    “Plotinus was uncompromising with those who wanted to glorify either this world or the other world – they were both missing the point entirely. Each expansion of the self, Plotinus says, brings more and more of the “external world” into ourselves; it doesn’t shut more and more of it out. World denial – the denial of any existent, for that matter – is for Plotinus the perfect sign of sickness.
    Nowhere is this more forcefully seen than in Plotinus’s extraordinary attack on the Gnostics, who were archetypal Ascenders, viewing all of manifestation as nothing but shadows, and evil shadows at that. The Gnostics had indeed achieved a causal-level intuition
    (“The world is illusory, Brahman alone is real”), but they had not broken through to the Nondual (“Brahman is the world”). They thus taught that the world is evil, the body is a tomb, the senses are to be despised.
    Plotinus goes on to point out that those who would find an “other world” apart from “this world” have missed the whole point. There is no “this world” or “other world” – it is all a matter of one’s perception. There is not even any “going up” or “coming down.” No movement in space takes place. “Spirit and Soul are everywhere and nowhere.” We are in “Heaven” whenever “we in heart and mind remember God”; we are “immersed in Matter” whenever we forget God. Same place, different perception. Plotinus explicitly and often states that we “will arrive at the All without change of place.” Those who talk of “this world” or an “other world” have both missed the point – they are the Descenders or the Ascenders, not the Whole-Hearted.”

    Ken Wilber- Sex, Ecology & Spirituality


    Posted on January 4th, 2014 at 9:06 pm Reply | Quote
  • Leftism as cancer « Jim’s Blog Says:

    […] civil society, which is many. Following Marx’s definition, by capitalism and civil society we mean the “society of industry, of general competition, of freely pursued private interest, of anarchy, […]

    Posted on January 5th, 2014 at 7:20 am Reply | Quote
  • Peter A. Taylor Says:

    “Leftism as cancer”: required reading.


    Posted on January 5th, 2014 at 3:39 pm Reply | Quote
  • Lightning Round – 2014/01/08 | Free Northerner Says:

    […] A good quote from Luciano Pellicani. […]

    Posted on January 8th, 2014 at 6:04 am Reply | Quote
  • leftism as cancer « Jim’s Blog Says:

    […] civil society, which is many. Following Marx”s definition, by capitalism and civil society we mean the “society of industry, of general competition, of freely pursued private interest, of […]

    Posted on August 30th, 2014 at 9:52 am Reply | Quote
  • chris b Says:

    Was any further discussion on this piece of work conducted anywhere? It is majestic and in need of urgent study on a number of fronts – the significance of the gnostic currents of the proffessional revolutionary created by alienation (and over production as echoed by Turchin) as well as the urgent need for a metaphysical narrative to power any reactionary current – whether this is influenced by Christian concepts or not. The progressives have a metaphysical narrative built atop Hegels theodicy, reactionaryies do not have an adequate animating one. Trad xtianity is insufficient. Reactionaryism while not being as barren as conservatism is pretty close.

    I also fear your universe discovering itself via capitalism AI becoming will also be ineffective. Humans are not selfless things that will be animated to sacrifice for a machinic intelligence – they seek salvation, purity and the kingdom of heaven on earth. At least the anglo prots do at the very least.


    admin Reply:

    No one expects that to happen without a fight.


    Posted on May 12th, 2015 at 7:02 am Reply | Quote
  • Quote note (#190) | Neoreactive Says:

    […] Pellicani (remember him?) on the ideological peregrinations of early Reform Christianity (among the immediate […]

    Posted on October 13th, 2015 at 3:30 pm Reply | Quote

Leave a comment