On European Religious Particularism

The well-known and notorious “European paganism versus Europeanised Christianity” question has been addressed and dealt-with many a time here at West Coast Reactionaries, as well as by me and others in a series of podcasts on my YouTube channel. The overall direction the debate has moved towards appears to be that whilst Christianity — especially in the West — has by-and-large collapsed in exoteric terms, to turn to any external, id est foreign, alternative is either distasteful individually or impossible collectively.

The two most oft-mentioned alternatives to Christianity in Europe are the pre-Christian pagan religiousity which our ancestors practised, and an Islam which — at the moment — is perceived as a strong and masculine force (though with its chaotic and petty accretions) which is seemingly fit demographically as well as esoterically (according to Rene Guenon) to replace Christianity.

I have said it more than once that I believe — with Paul Andersen — that Europe’s Christian tradition is a synthetic mix of the pre-established German and Latin paganism reconfigured through a sort of Semitic solar monotheism, where God walked the Earth as man in order to lead us upwards on the proper path; and this is partly why the tradition has entertained the very possibility of undergoing collapse and various stages of degeneration (the Reformation, Vatican II, et cetera), because it did not come to Europe in a “pure” form, it was an imported force which was tweaked and re-interpreted and so forth by different groups and people. The Arians were once considered Christians; that is no longer the case — even a group like the Knight’s Templar was eventually crushed by the Catholic Church itself. The infighting, various splinters and different sects of European Christianity speak of an underlying “roughness” to its exotericism and ways in which the religion filters through the general culture and ethos of the people. Paul believes that these things can be remedied, though it would be no easy task of course to essentially come up with a “new” Christianity (not to mention heretical as Nick Steves has said). Nick noted that a religion is never “cut to fit” a given people as Truth is of course not questionable, thus active attempts to sort of fit Christianity into the box of Europe are in vain. I see this whole affair as a misunderstanding. Christianity — Catholicism, Protestantism, Anglicanism, et cetera included — does not need to be changed at a doctrinal level, at the esoteric level. What must be changed is actually Europe. The box is not big enough.

A friend of mine, James of Dantean Dialogues, recently responded to Mark Citadel‘s excellent Open Letter to Pope Francis. Allow me to quote the comment in its entirety:

Dear Mark,

Despite the great intentions of your open letter, it fails to fundamentally understand the nature of the Church as a feminine being. Your calls for a “muscular” and “masculine” Roman Catholicism is tantamount to demanding a feminist Church. Allow me to elaborate.

In Western Christendom, you correctly perceive a lack of masculinity and spiritual virility. However, the Catholic response is not that it is the Church that lacks masculinity, but society itself — what we in the West used to call “The Empire.” In traditional (as opposed to traditionalist) Catholicism, especially if one reads Dante whom Benedict XV in his encyclical IN PRAECLARA SUMMORUM calls “the most eloquent singer of the Christian idea,” the ideal society is composed of a feminine element (the Papacy) and a masculine element (The Emperor) — what Dante would call “the two suns.” The understanding was that the Emperor himself was the highest seat of earthly authority and that the pretensions of the Papacy for secularization was a usurpation. This can be understood in the analogue of the family which has both a mother and a father. This is why the Roman Church is referred to as “Holy Mother Church.”

Thus, if we take the analogue of the family, one never complains that the wife or mother does not contain enough masculinity! Indeed, she would rely on the father — the husband to provide the necessary virility to protect the family. What you are witnessing is not a cowardly Church, but one who is fulfilling her vocation as a woman. And, just like women in the analogue of the family require men to govern them, so, too, does the Church require an Empire in order to flourish. You were correct to note that the Church readily endorsed the virile actions of the Crusaders, but this was because those actions were performed for the sake of “Christendom” which was just another idea of the European Ecumene — the Imperium; the masculine aspect. If the man abandons the family, is the solution to ask the woman to become a man? No! This is the secret meaning behind the passage of my namesake: “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to care for orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.” (James 1:27) The Church is a widow and the poor European nations are the orphans.

Therefore, while your polemics make good points, they should be aimed not at the woman who is being constantly pulled here and there by the ideologies of the world, but the impotence of the so called “traditional” men who have yet to resurrect the Empire who adored the Church like a man loves his wife. Real men do not let their wives and mothers fight their battles for them! Real men do not complain when their wives and mothers are not “muscular” enough to fight foreign invaders. If you consider yourself to be a man, then protect the Church rather than complain about her.

Sincerely,
James
A Catholic

Mark’s response is agreeable enough, though I would disagree with him regarding how “robust” a Church must be. The Church — any Church — is a feminine entity. It is a passive entity, that which receives and transmutes, that which interprets and relays. The Empire James speaks of is the masculine side of any true civilisation. One must have both the Priestly element and the Warrior element present in the society, and the realisation of these things within the social order births a civilisation in the proper sense.

The Church in Europe is declining and degenerating — and I hold this to be the case all the way back historically — because of Kali Yuga informing the social zeitgeist. It has little to do with specific events in the Church or the actions of the Church per se, but the natural ebb and flow of the moving world of Kali. The Empire and the Church traditionally work in tandem, but it appears the domain of action (the Empire) has fallen first, and the domain of contemplation (the Church) falls with it.

The animating spirit in any religious order must necessarily find some contextualisation beyond its mere potentiality. Whether in prayer or Jihad “the demon of action,” to quote Guenon, must rear its head. How to restore the Church is perhaps not the question in need for asking; instead we must ask “How do we restore the Empire?” Alas, I believe the only answer lies with God, and it will reveal itself with time.

Things brings us onto another point regarding Europe’s religion. Whatever has happened has happened for a reason — there are no accidents. The Age of Destruction must come and pass; the wheel must turn; it is unavoidable. Regarding the religion of Europe, perhaps it is necessary that it falls apart to be replaced by something we are yet to see? I do not think for a second that Islam will fill the void, but perhaps its presence will act as a catalyst through which the European soul can be refound and recontextualised, fit for the next age and its men.

Whether we are in this process proper or not, however, is quite irrelevant. One’s actions are aligned with principle, not potential. European men should be inwardly strong first and foremost, not liberalised, weak and effeminate. Religion — Christianity — can facilitate this, as it did with the Crusades, with Charles Martel, with the Iron Guard, with Charlemagne, et cetera. It is not that Christian doctrine has changed, but that man has changed. And so can he be changed for the better.


NOTE: After sharing this article with James, he had this to say:

You know, over the years, I’ve spent a lot of time pondering the role of Christianity in the world and how to resolve it with my intrinsic understanding of eternal truths. I find that the figure is hidden in the mystery of the Crucifixion itself — and I’ve spoken about this to various friends of mine in my circle.

The way in which the Church degenerates and decays over the ages should not be surprising to Christians, but it is. That is because the body of Christ was always destined to die and decay. The crucifixion is a microcosm of the era in which “God is dead” because for three days, He was indeed dead; and the decay in which the Church is undergoing is the same as that of the body of Christ when it was nailed and entombed.

That is the secret and hidden meaning of the crucifixion: that it is happening in macrocosm today in the modern age; the modern age is the first act of the Easter Triduum and this is also why most of the apostles — being unable to understand this mystical death of the Catholic Church — have gone astray denying Christ thrice (as Saint Peter did; the first Pope). Only Saint John, the mystical apostle, the one whom Jesus loved, stayed to the end at the cross, loyal to the body that was dying.

This is the position I wish to emulate; to be the apostle who sees the decay of the Church but does not waver from the decay, because the rest of the exoteric religion still believes like Saint Peter does; e.g. “God forbid, Lord that you should go to Jerusalem and die.” Right now, the Church must go to Jerusalem and die because she is the body of Christ. And since the body of Christ underwent torture and crucifixion so must the Church. So when I see people jeer at the Church and tell her “Stop being so weak; change the world!” I also hear those words from the gospels, “If He is the chosen one, let Him come down from the cross.”

People do not understand that something utterly mystical is happening in the modern age. Just as the modern age is the darkest of all times, so was the crucifixion the darkest time. It is the time when God is dead.

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Adam

As a man among men, I can learn.

23 thoughts on “On European Religious Particularism

  1. Adam,
    I don’t see this as an issue of gender identity. Both men and women receive the courage needed from the example of Christ on the cross.
    No greater love has any man than this. That a man lay down his life for his friends.
    That said, waiting will only allow Islam to out-breed native Britons.
    Pacivity is neither gender.

    1. I can’t help but notice that your understanding of gender is limited to the sexological sense. Also, I didn’t say that the “issue” has anything to do with “gender identity,” but rather Church and Empire being manifestations of the perennial dualism between priest and warrior found in all traditional orders, and that fact the loss of this structure is why we are in our crisis.

      I feel you’ve woefully misunderstood this article, CCT.

  2. This point will certainly require more contemplation. Simply thinking about the history of Christian heresies shows the value of the observations stated in this article. Practically all heresies, like Catharism, Protestantism :^), and (to some extent) Mohammedanism, sought to destroy the Church by attacking faith and doctrine. It was only (or at least mainly) leftism/liberalism that struck against the institution of Monarchy instead, which turned out to have a devastating effect. Christendom had always been the rallying point of all the European kingdoms, especially when dealing with a significant threat; of course, Christendom means nothing when the kingdoms and Monarchy, which derive their authority and legitimacy from God and His Church, have been replaced by secular republics.

    1. Ditto for the Romanist Church. The true Church is the Protestant one all along who stripping away traditions that negates the word of God in the same way the Pharisees by the traditions nullifying the word of God.

      While keeping the rest of the traditions alive as it were in the beginning. Men always kept the faith from the beginning. And this true church came to the fore during the Reformation.

  3. “Alas, I believe the only answer lies with God, and it will reveal itself with time.”

    There is so much in the traditions, myths and folklore of the West that speaks of a return of a king like figure, namely the Arthurian Legend and the Grail Cycle. In Christianity this is evident in the affirmation of the Nicene Creed that Jesus (the King of Kings) will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end. We are reminded of the traditional notion of an invisible “King of Kings” or “Universal Ruler” or “King of the World” as Evola writes in Mystery of the Grail.

    The Second Coming of Christ … in glory to judge the world at the end of this age and set up formally and gloriously the kingdom of God, as defined by the Bauer-Danker Lexicon and the Lexicon of Joseph Henry Thayer, will bring a return to the golden symbolism of the Olympian Cycle. Reflections of which can be found in the minds of the Templars who’s “the Holy Land” was the Supreme Centre of the world. Obviously what can be identified here are just echoes of the Primordial Tradition but if we hold true to this still living religion perhaps there is hope for the West.

    “Sing and be glad, all ye children of the West
    for your King shall come again,
    and He shall dwell among you,
    all the days of your life.

    And the Tree that was withered shall be renewed,
    and He shall plant it in the high places,
    and the City shall be blessed.”

    –The Return of the King

  4. This was a really good post. I can see what was being said in a better light because of how you have provided a ‘frame’ for it, and notice where I errored (though I still think religious bodies need to man the hell up! haha).. Perhaps this has been a mistake from the beginning, and we have been asking all the wrong questions.

    The constant retort by the more snide elements of the AltRight is that the Church has FAILED Occidental man, but what if in fact it is Occidental man who has failed the Church? Let us back up a little to the French Revolution. The Church was of course a prime enemy, but it wasn’t the Pope who had his head cut off. Most of the rage of the Revolutionaries was directed at the monarchy and its closest allies, the Church being a victim when there was nobody there to defend it (with the Knights Templar having disappeared much earlier). An attempt was made in the Vendee, but the Sovereign failed the Church miserably.

    And come to think of it…. the same is actually true of the Bolshevik Revolution. The Church suffered horribly, but for the Revolutionaries the prime enemy was the Tsar. We’ve been asking why there is no ‘Church’ to rally around, rather than questioning whether or not the current Occidental man could be rallied around anything whatsoever. I still think religion and religious questions are very much relevant, but are we putting the proverbial cart before the proverbial horse?

      1. Probably very necessary this James guy gets a blog now. That thought alone will require weeks of reflection on my part. I am not sure I have ever read it or heard anyone else suggest it. All I can say is: profound.

  5. If the people don’t care for the Church, why should the Church care for them?

    I saw a photo exhibit in London about a photographer following a local priest in London and his parish life. The majority of attendants to the Church appeared to be non-whites or elderly whites. Young white familes didn’t really exist at all.

    The Church, like any communal institution, will serve those who give it life. I wonder if this is why people work hard to corrupt Christianity with heresy and ideology.

    Poland appears a pretty good example of people turning to the Church and the Church helping them and caring for them. This Vice idiot goes to see what Poland’s nationalism is all about and at the heart of it is a Church service https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnC-zSdMSRo

    European man’s ability to evade ideology has been limited and his defenses stripped away. I think the debate at the heart of this is in what role the Church and Christianity has had in that. Pebbles against the stream or misguidedly enabling it to happen. Clearly elements of the Church provide strong resistance in places but not in others, and why that is appears an ongoing debate for good reason.

  6. An incredible and thought-provoking piece.

    The traditional order is one where the Sovereign comes from the warriors and is sanctified by the priests, and both are subject to him. A point of detail I’d make is that the Church stands in feminine relation to the Sovereign, but the warrior stands in feminine relation to the Church (just as the brahmins and not kshatriya are the highest of the Hindu castes), because the warrior must serve the Divine order.

    The gates of hell will not prevail against the Church, but it is the power of a Sovereign who defends her which will birth the new and greater Christendom. Maybe there is something to the Western prophecies of the Great Catholic Monarch who will stall the coming of the Antichrist and prepare the Church for the final persecution.

    I’m not Orthodox, but the tradition holds great interest for me. From their perspective, the decline of the Western Church began when the Pope seized undue temporal power for himself. Here lie the roots of the battles between Guelph and Ghibelline. I wonder if the imposition of the Latin forms onto the culturally distinct traditions of the Germanic, British, and Irish Church may have in turn laid the roots of their rebellion against Rome in the form of Protestantism. Taking from this piece, the solution seems to be one where both republicanism and de Maistre’s ultramontanism are rejected in favor of Symphonia. Guenon might end up being correct in his view that salvation will come from the East.

    1. It wouldn’t bother me terribly much to see a future Czar march into Rome and compel the Pope and Patriarch of Moscow into council until such time as they have united the Church. In fact, I’d welcome it.

  7. What has always nagged me about the We Need a Religion Proper to White People (WNaRPtWP) idea is that it invariably seems to ask too much of religion. You’re asking a religion to replace common sense. But if you need your religion to do that, then you are, in a sense already too far gone.

    Yes, it is certainly true that religious authorities today request that we deny common sense. Consider immigration. The current crop of bishops may (and largely does) aver it is our “Christian duty” to, say, not enforce national borders. Now it is clear to any well-read person that this is not authentic Christian teaching, and moreover even if it were, it oversteps the temporal authority of bishops. It is a null teaching.

    So the WNaRPtWP folks come along and rightly take note of this error. But they go too far. And push for the Church to create the opposite error: I.e., to rule, in its (irreformable, permanent, universal) dogma, that national borders shall be enforced. But that isn’t right either. You want a Church that rules capably (with justice and mercy and fortitude) in its proper domain or charism.

    Indeed, cannot the Sovereign enforce borders? Is that not his job?? He just isn’t. So, whilst we have a majority of bishops signing onto open borders with some fluffy bunny interpretations of Scripture, the primary problem here isn’t really the bishops. Yes they’re stupid and traitorous for doing so, but they’re only following the lead of the (stupid and traitorous) Sovereign who wills (both by action and inaction) an invasion.

    A nation doesn’t need it’s religion to be right on open borders, so much as it needs the religion to simply shut up about stuff it has no competency in. It needs a sovereign to be right on the issue, and fixing the religion is unlikely to fix the sovereign, because as we’ve seen the influence at least as likely to go one direction as the other.

  8. Having read the article a second time I get the sense that Evola’s concept of the primacy of the Ghibelline form of Imperium is informing this article and the comments by James, i.e. the burden of worldly problems falls firstly on the Imperium and the Emperor, the temporal, and not the the Church.

  9. Christianity, like any religion, isn’t true in and of itself. It has, however, served to supply European man with an adequate symbolic system with which to gesture lexically at what is beyond imagination and conception, the God who is not of the Mystical Theology. The various European paganisms are dead and cannot be resurrected, so the only possible means by which European culture can forge a connection to the Real is by the Church. There will be no new authentic revelation in the Kali Yuga, vide Guenon.

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