Addressing Peter Grey’s terrible take on We Are The Witchcraft

I have a lot more that I’d probably prefer to talk about, which I plan to talk about over the course of this month, but first I’m afraid I find myself compelled to respond to some esoteric e-drama concerning a man whose work I’ve cited over the last year. Yes, I’m afraid it’s one of those situations again. This time the person we’re talking about is Peter Grey, a self-styled Luciferian Witch who had been an esteemed author on witchcraft known for books such as Acopalyptic Witchcraft, The Red Goddess, and Lucifer: Princeps, and who had more recently released The Two Antichrists last year. Yesterday I had stumbled upon a take of his so bad that I find myself compelled to make some sort of statement about it.

On February 24th, coincidentally the same day that Russia invaded Ukraine, Peter Grey joined Gordon White for another episode of his podcast Rune Soup, this one apparently the third module of his Protection and Malefica Course, to discuss the ethical implications of cursing in magick as well as the content of Jack Parson’s landmark manifesto We Are The Witchcraft. That’s all good, valid, and important to talk about, and it’s not like you won’t find insight here, but towards the end of that podcast is when Peter Grey decided to talk politics, and things do not get good in that department.

Ostensibly, Peter Grey is an anarchist and a radical socialist, though perhaps with certain quasi-primitivist tendencies, and in theory this approach to politics shows itself in his work. But in Rune Soup we see a different side of Grey’s politics, namely that of crass opportunism and big tent populism. Grey is apparently one of those people on the left who appears to be convinced that we really need to unite with the people who hate us, by which we mean they will either do violence against us or invoke the power of the state to oppress us, and who we hate in turn, in order to fight the much bigger foe of capitalist state repression. We see this towards the end of the podcast, after they’re done talking about Parson’s essay. First he briefly mentions the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, which took place on the same day as that podcast episode, by saying that Russia “sent the tanks” to Ukraine because “the West is falling”, whatever that means. Then he complains about people who think “Biden-style leftism” (which is absolutely not a fucking thing but go off I guess) will prevail, saying that they are in for a “very rude awakening” because of the mighty backlash from “the forces of repression”. That’s when he says “you’re going to need people on your side who at the present time you’re calling fascists, transphobes – what are the other meaningless hate words that are thrown around at the moment? – white supremacists”. He refers to these categorical descriptions as “the nonsense rhetoric of division”, and claims that anyone who reads We Are The Witchcraft and agrees with it has the duty to “do the work” to “connect with the others around” and not engage in “an endless witch-hunt” or “a purity death-spiral”. This is when Grey concludes that we need to ask “why they hell aren’t we seeing it now?” in reference to the radicalism of Jack Parsons.

Before we need to go anywhere we need to establish something right away: this is all obviously nonsense. Grey does not know that Jack Parsons would not have rejected transphobes, and he has absolutely no way to claim that he would’ve supported unity with fascists – in fact it seems very obvious that these would be his enemies. But having established this, it is important to understand what Peter Grey means when he says all of this. Grey’s overall position is that Western capitalism is collapsing, the time is approaching for anti-capitalist witches to usher in a new society, and in order to achieve this they will need all the help they can get, and so on this basis Grey argues that witches seeking to oppose capitalism should make alliances with essentially anyone who opposes the current establishment. When Grey complains about people being referred to as fascists, transphobes, or white supremacists, presumably by leftists and liberals, it might be inferred that he is referring to people who he thinks are resisting the establishment and are merely unfairly demonised by people who he refers to as “Biden-style leftists”. My guesses in that regard would be the so-called “Freedom” Convoy, TERFs who at least claim to be anti-capitalist in some way, possibly people like Derrick Jensen, or really just any self-styled radical who comes out with a bigoted take and doesn’t issue any sort of self-correction or apology for it. I suspect that he may also be responding to the discourse around attempts at left-right convergence, which are initiated either by fascists or idiots. Jimmy Dore and his buddies spring to mind.

So, Grey’s take is essentially that the far-left should unite with the far-right in order to seize the opportunity to destroy capitalism as it is collapsing. Well, there are several problems with this. It’s certainly not obvious how the invasion of Ukraine is supposed to single-handedly usher in the collapse of global capitalism, at all. It’s also not obvious why radical socialists, communists, or anarchists (which Grey claims he is) should ally with people whose primary political goals involve oppressing and destroying them. More to the point, this sort of big tent populist approach to anti-capitalist politics doesn’t work in that it doesn’t succeed in bringing us any closer to dismantling capitalism. The only thing it eventually succeeds in is normalizing not only reactionary ideology but also some incredibly toxic bigotry that goes with it. Chip Berlet already examined this phenomenon in his 1999 essay Right Woos Left and had already demonstrated therein the ways in which left-right convergences lead to fascists and anti-semitic conspiracy theories gaining influence in progressive activist circles while never actually generating any long-term political victories against the ruling class.

Not to mention, the argument is that we need to ally with reactionaries in order to fight “the forces of repression”, but if given the power those “allies” would be doing the repressing. Here in the United Kingdom we already have a government and opposition that is doing everything in its power to undermine the rights of trans people, while in many US states there are efforts to actually oppress trans people by forcing trans kids to undergo invasive “physical examinations” and abducting them from their parents if they undergo gender affirmation surgery. Isn’t this also repression, Peter Grey? What about the fact that the American right-wing seems to be increasingly interested in overthrowing elected leadership in order to abolish democracy and replace it with a dictatorship run by Trump? Would the outcome of that not be repression? You’re so concerned with the spectre of “cancel culture” on the left that it’s blinding you to what’s going on and to the reality of the people you want us to unite with.

The point regarding “rhetoric” of division is notable in that forces me to return to the subject of unity. As ever, “unity” is only valuable in a relativistic sense; unity of whom, or of who with what? Has it ever occurred to anyone that you don’t have to unite with everyone and everything, or that there are people that you should not unite with and who do not deserve such unity? Why should trans people and their allies unite with people who not only deny the very existence of trans people but also want trans people to be legislated out of existence? Why should Jewish people be asked to unite with people who hate them and want them to be exterminated or persecuted? Why should we be asked to unite with people who want to create a totalitarian system maintained through genocide? The self-styled “Luciferian” would do well to consider that the defining action expressed in the myth of Lucifer, his rebellion against God and subsequent fall from heaven, is precisely the refusal of unity with the greatest fascist of them all! Rebellion, the “renewal of the war”, is the refusal of unity by the renewal of conflict against power, against that which is, such that there can be no unity with it, and from the standpoint of certain pre-Christian cosmologies it is this and not unity in the abstract which comprises the cosmos itself.

I also see a distinct contradiction in Grey’s overall stance brought about by his big tent populist approach to anti-capitalist politics in relation to what seems to be a relatively elitist view of witchcraft. Drawing from We Are The Witchcraft along with Jack Parson’s apparent experience as a practitioner of Thelema, Grey likes to assert that witchcraft and magick are only “for the few”. However meritorious the position is argued to be, we are supposed to accept this and at the same time also accept that witches are supposed to bring anyone who happens to hate the establishment for literally any reason no matter how reactionary and bigoted into the fold of the cause. It’s like witchcraft is for the few to participate in, but for also anyone claiming to oppose the system to participate in. That makes no sense.

Bringing this back to the subject of We Are The Witchcraft, I think it’s worth drawing attention to the following passage from that manifesto, which reads thus:

Our way is not for all men. There are those who are so constricted and sick in themselves that the thought of their own freedom is a horror, and that of others a fierce pain; so that they would enslave all men. And these you should shun, or, if you must, destroy them as you will know how, for this also is bounty.

Peter Grey would like us to think that to follow in the example of Jack Parsons means that we should ally with reactionaries for the purposes of unity. This is implied by the fact that he closes his rant on the subject by appealing to the supposed loss of Parson’s radicalism in the world. But I think that a more consistent of application of the message of We Are The Witchcraft is precisely the opposite of what Peter Grey prescribes. When Parson talks about “those who are so constricted and sick in themselves that the thought of their own freedom is a horror, and that of others a fierce pain”, we can easily see that it is in fact the people Grey wants us to ally with who embody this description. The people we refer to as transphobes, for which Grey complains about us, we do so because they are in fact transphobes, and they are this because they want to prevent trans people from being liberated or acheiving the full range of rights to which they, if at least we operate from the conceits given to us under the banner of the human rights framework, would be entitled to instead of denied. The transphobes do this because trans people, along with queer people, non-binary, and all the others that do not conform to the experience of cisheteronormativity, are through their mere existence a threat to established notions of gender that have been the basis of long-standing systems of oppression and hence authority for certain individuals over others. The people we refer to as fascists, for which Grey complains about us, we do so because they are fascists, and we call them such because they want nothing less than the re-organization of the capitalist state along the precept of absolute submisson to the reified authority of a single dictator – hardly different in principle to the tyranny for which the Devil opposed God. The people we refer to as white supremacists, for which Grey complains about us, we do so because they are white supremacists, and we call them such because they want to establish, or perhaps rather reinforce, a brutal hierarchy of power based on race in which some people are privileged and the rest are oppressed. All of these either suggest a fear of freedom or even afflict it upon both the subject and the sovereigns, and those who seek to implement them are thus not the natural allies of The Witchcraft as Grey would have us believe. In fact, Parsons is quite clear as to what the Witch should do with them: “these you should shun, or, if you must, destroy them as you will know how”.

You would think that in a podcast devoted partially to an exegesis of We Are The Witchcraft would have had no trouble arriving at this understanding of the political implications of the text, but it seems that this understanding has eluded both Peter Grey and Gordon White, and I’ll be honest, the idea of getting around this and side-stepping it sounds like classic pseudo-intellectualism, seeking more of the thing than what it is and contorting the substance through sophistication. I’m inclined to think of it as a sort of privilege on Peter Grey’s part, since it really does speak of a sort of detachment from the gritty realities of radical politics in favour of some intellectual landscape, some retreat into the kingdom of thought and contemplation. Grey no doubt lives off of money generated from his relatively well-esteemed body of work and made through his company Scarlet Imprint. But of course, Grey reminds me to some extent of Rhyd Wildermuth, funny enough a man who has said he derived influence from Grey, and Wildermuth currently lives in the Ardennes, completely unconnected to any practical experience of American radical politics, making money partially through his books and his courses on neopaganism. I mean, fuck, I hate to say it but even Noam Chomsky sort of follows the trope as well, not because of Jimmy Dore’s drivel about how he’s a class traitor because he knows his “Force The Vote” campaign was never going to work, but because he looks at what’s going in Ukraine and his answer is simply to act like Russia has no agency in all this because it’s all America’s fault; and if you’re wondering how that connects to any sort of aloofness to the material circumstances at hand, you need only ask a Ukrainian translator. To be very honest, I’m getting mighty tired of this pattern.

In view of Grey’s comments, on their own I think he is merely purveying a populist outlook that naturally aligns someone towards the idea of left-right convergences as a form of praxis. And yet, there are signs of something else. For one thing, while I know him as basically an anarchist, he did in the stream briefly say that “post-anarchism” was the correct way to arrive at his interpretation of We Are The Witchcraft. It’s possible, then, that Peter Grey is technically no longer an anarchist in the sense that we might understand it, but rather some sort of “post-anarchist”, which necessarily entails that he has departed from baseline anarchism, possibly because baseline anarchism does not allow him to justify some of his positions and prejudices. The same thing basically happened with Rhyd Wildermuth, except Wildermuth nowadays prefers to call himself an Autonomist Marxist rather than “post-anarchist”, as though Autonomist Marxism is supposed to somehow better accomodate Rhyd’s reactionary socialism. Another sign I get from him is that he still whines about “social justice warriors” among other things for part of The Two Antichrists, at least if memory serves me well. This is in 2021. I’ll just say that by then I had already stopped doing that for quite a few years. Then, there’s Phil Hine mentioning in comment on the podcast that Grey had spoken positively, even fanboyishly, of Ted Kaczynski. And then there’s something that, admittedly, I didn’t initially give much thought to, but there’s the logo that used to represent Scarlet Imprint. It’s not their logo anymore, but you can still see it a lot in Lucifer: Princeps, and I can see why there would be problems with it in that it really does look like a variation of the swastika. It’s not the swastika that was used by the Nazis, to be clear on that front, and I’m guessing to them it’s an original esoteric sigil or whatever, but it looks sort of like they’ve put two triskleions together but the triskelions are in the shape of swastikas. That’s not even the only sus symbol around. Not to mention, I seem to recall him complaining at some point in The Brazen Vessel that the witchcraft community and the Left Hand Path needed to abandon “individualism”, however he defines it. But then why is “individualism” a problem if you declare that your legacy of witchcraft derives from Jack Parsons, who was literally an individualist anarcho-communist!? Suffice it to say, there is much about Peter Grey’s overall politics that is probably not as it seems, and it has some troubling implications to say the least.

All in all, the last thing to say is that for all of these reasons I will not be waiting to purchase Lucifer: Praxis after this point. I probably won’t even need it anyway for reasons I plan to explain, but really I have one important reason for spurining this book. It’s meant to elaborate the practical manifestation of his idea of Luciferian witchcraft, and the main problem there is what the political implications of it could be. Peter Grey is still not so foolish as to completely side-step the issue of politics in occultism and spirituality more broadly, he knows full well the necessity of politicizing witchcraft and indeed is known for advocating such politicization himself. But that’s very much the problem: now I have some very specific ideas of what that looks like in his hands, none of them good. His “post-anarchist” take on Luciferian witchcraft could well involve esoteric justifications for traditionalism undertaken in the name of rebellion against hierarchy, simply so as to forge an intellectual bridge for the alliances he intends to be made, and I would rather not lend any financial support to that bullshit. Take from the good parts of his work by all means, but just know that this might not be a totally unrealistic assumption on my part.

The reactionary, authoritarian spirituality of Julius Evola

There are few intellectuals who could be said to have had such a broad influence on not only esoteric fascism but, unfortunately, a lot of occult philosophy than Julius Evola. He is often recommended within Left Hand Path circles, and you find one or two of his books in the reading list featured in Stephen Flowers’ Lords of the Left Hand Path. This, I think, is a problem, because in many ways Evola’s spiritual worldview is deeply authoritarian in character, and not to mention rests on a frankly ridiculous understanding of some of the religions he’s talking about. Although not a self-defined fascist, indeed he was often opposed by the Italian fascists and in turn despised them in kind as not being sufficiently reactionary for his liking, he is nonetheless at the foundation of so much of esoteric fascist thought today.

A major dichotomy in Evola’s thought is between the divine masculine and the divine feminine, which conceptualized through the “Solar” and “Lunar” spiritual races, which for him also represent superior and inferior civilizations respectively. The “Solar” race is the “superior” race that represents the Hyperborean civilization that supposedly preceded all other civilizations, as well as Aryan civilization and the Northern Atlantic or Germanic races, and a cult of the sun god or divine father that represented the values of heroism, dominion, traditional hierarchy, and transcendental divinity/spirituality. Evola associated this solar principle with the Greek god Apollo, the Greco-Egyptian god Ammon (or Zeus-Ammon), the Mithraic Mysteries, the Germanic cult of Odin, the old Vedic religion of the Aryans, the Zoroastrian worship of Ahura Mazda, Buddhism (which he considered to be the inheritor of the lost Aryan tradition of India; which is utterly laughable given the Buddhist contempt for Vedic tradition, but more on that later), and the Roman Empire. The “Lunar” race by contrast is the “inferior” race that for Evola represents the influence of southern races, such as the Southern Europeans (or Mediterraneans) and the Southern Indians, and for him represents a cult of the mother goddess that embodies submissiveness, “materialism” (meaning things like consumerism or greed as opposed to ontological materialism), social degeneration, and the undifferentiated masses, as well as collectivist societies that emphasize equality, brotherhood, and sharing. Evola associates this not only with mother goddess cults like those of Demeter and Isis, but with Greek mystery religions (whose Asiatic influences he deemed feminine or “Demetrian”), the Dravidian religion, and even Christianity. He despised Christianity because of its emphasis on salvation, faith, brotherhood, and love along with most crucially its premise that anyone regardless of caste, race or tradition can join in the Kingdom of God, all of which was an affront to the traditional hierarchy that Evola praised in the Roman Empire and therefore he considered to be too feminine for him. He also despised the Brahmanist schools of Hinduism because he felt that it identified God with nature and for him this was a corruption of Aryan religion generated by the influence of Southern Indian beliefs.

“Apollo and Diana” by Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo (1757)

Naturally, this view of the history of religion and civilization likely stems from deep-seated sexist attitudes about men and women, as can be suggested through his chief inspiration, Otto Weininger, who basically believed that women were mindless sex objects. He conceived an ontological dualism between the sexes in which the male sex represented the aspirations towards some kind of “higher” reason, conceived through the lens of Platonic and Kantian idealism, and the immortality of the soul while the female sex represented matter, nature, and the sense, all of which Weininger considered to be “fallen” in character. This for him meant that men posess a “higher” spirit, not bound to the material world, and that they have the capacity to decide whether or not death means either oblivion or the restoration of the soul to some kind of “pure” state, while women not only do not possess this “higher” spirit but they also lack ego, individuality and the capacity for logic and morality, and exist only to have sex with men, be desired by men, have children and therefore reproduce the material world. And if that sounds sexist to you, that might be because it absolutely is. Evola, naturally, was influenced by this view when he espoused the “masculine” solar race as concerned with transcendental logic and spirituality and the “feminine” lunar race as materialistic. So it should come as no surprise that Evola was a proponent of social inequality between men and women, which he believed was natural. He also believed that the true purpose of women was merely to do whatever men tell them and apparently his contempt for women was such that he merely considered them to be things, or at least that’s the impression I get from the fact that he wrote an article titled “Woman As Thing”. He also seemed to believe that both rape and regular sexual coitus shared an element of sadism at their root, which leads some to conclude, possibly correctly, that Evola supported and justified the rape of women and considered all forms of sex to be rape.

Evola’s solar cult, it should be noted, takes on a distinctly authoritarian connotation when you make note of how he praises the Roman Empire for banning the Bacchanalia, which he viewed as a civilizational rejection of Dionysian and Aphroditistic elements, which we can surmise were supposed to be related to the “Lunar” cult. That is an important detail because we should remember a few things about the cult of Dionysus in the Greco-Roman world. In Rome, Dionysus was not only known as Bacchus but also as Liber, or Liber Pater (or “Father Liber”, meaning “Father Freedom”). In addition to wine and fertility, which were the typical domains of Dionysus/Bacchus, Liber was also a god of freedom (as his name suggests) and was the patron saint of the plebeians, which was basically the Roman name for commoner, as in the common man. Dionysus, as Liber, was the divine champion of the common man, and his cult therefore was quite the populist one. In addition to this, his festival, Liberalia, was a coming-of-age festival in which the opportunity for uncensored speech was allowed for just one day. Normally, in ancient Roman society, you couldn’t always say what you want and in fact you could find yourself detained for saying the wrong thing about the powerful (an example of this being the satirist Gnaeus Naevius, who was arrested twice by the Romans and ultimately exiled to Tunisia). Related to the Roman Bacchic cult was the Phrygian satyr Marsyas, who alongside Liber was something of an emblem for freedom of speech, and by himself was something of a symbol of resistance to imperial power in that the Roman Empire considered him an emblem of subversion against Augustus, who in turn became a symbol of Apollo, the god who flayed him alive. In general, Bacchanalia and the Dionysian cult in Rome, as in Greece, represented the freedom to transcend the rigid hierarchy of the society.

Whereas nowadays the dichotomy between the Apollonian and the Dionysian has been reduced to some Nietzschean pablum about the dichotomy between reason and creativity, in the actual Roman religion we find that the dichotomy was defined noticeably by class. There were two triads of gods in ancient Rome, each associated with two of the seven hills of Rome. The Capitoline Triad, the gods worshipped at the temple of Capitoline Hill, consisted of Jupiter, Juno and Minerva, while the Aventine Triad, representing a cult established by the Aventine Hill, consisted of Liber, Ceres, and Libera. The Capitoline Triad represented the patricians, meaning the Roman aristocracy, and the temple at the Capitoline Hill (which, ironically enough, was originally dedicated to Saturn) was situated within the Pomerium, the legal boundary separating the city itself from the rest of Rome (everything outside of this boundary was just the property of Rome). The Aventine Triad, by contrast, represented the plebeians, the common people, and the Aventine Temple lay outside the Pomerium, outside the legal boundary of Rome. The Aventine cult is also deeply republican in nature, having been established just after the overthrow of the Roman monarchy. Take note of the gods of each of these triads. The Capitoline Triad – Jupiter, Juno and Minerva, the Roman forms of Zeus, Hera and Athena respectively – are the jealous gods arrayed against humans. Jupiter, the usurper king of the gods, jealous of mankind, enmitous of the thought that man might equal the divine; Juno, constantly motivated to jealousy by Jupiter’s many adulteries, torments the sons of Zeus; and Athena, who cursed Arachne for defeating her fair and square in a weaving contest. All, of course, the triad of Olympus, the heavenly mountain. As for the Aventine Triad, you have Liber, a god of freedom and a Roman form of Dionysus, a god whose original connotations were deeply chthonic in their connection to death and rebirth, Ceres, the Roman form of the Greek Demeter who was a goddess of agriculture and the earth, and Libera, an Italic goddess of wine who evolved into the goddess Proserpina, the Roman form of the Greek Persephone, the wife of Hades and goddess of the underworld. The gods of the earth and underworld take center stage in the populist Aventine cult, while in the Capitoline cult the holy family of heaven do. Thus, in Rome, chthonic spirituality interwines with populism, working class republicanism and Bacchic freedom, while the authority of Zeus and the light of Apollo is totemic of ruling class authority. The Apollonian vs the Dionysian is not, then, a dialectic of reason and passion, but instead a cultic conflict between elitism and populism, the Apollonian being elitism and the Dionysian being populism.

“Bacchanal” by Frans Wouters (1612-1659)

This chthonic association also seems to mirror the popularity of chthonic cults, which often involved Dionysus or Persephone, in the more rural areas of ancient Greece, where in local cults you would have versions of a triad featuring Zeus, Hera and Athena wherein Persephone takes Athena’s place. And while we’re on the subject of Greece, it is here also that Dionysus is associated with populism of a certain type. The Dionsyia of Athens, the city version of the original rural festival, was introduced by Peisistratus. Peisistratus was considered by the ancients to be a tyrant, and while he does probably fit at least one qualification of what we would understand to be a tyrant, in that he overturned that government of Athens by force as opposed to democratic means, it’s not like he abolished the constitution of Athens (in fact he maintained much of the constitutional governance), and he actively and openly confronted the Athenian aristocracy. He removed many of the privileges of the aristocrats and generally reduced their control over the city, indeed distributing power and wealth throughout Athens rather than hoarding it for himself, remitted taxes to farmers who were receiving low wages for their labour, as well as more generally cutting taxes for working class citizens, he gave both land and loans to people who needed them, he protected foreigners who emigrated to become citizens of Athens, he built the aquaduct to distribute water to the masses, and ultimately was responsible for turning Athens from a collection of villages or polities into a grand unified city-state. As far as “tyrants” go, he did a lot of good for Athens and he seems to have been a genuinely populist ruler, and so it makes sense that he would introduce a festival devoted to the most ancient god with deep archetypal ties to populism.

In this light, Evola’s cult of the solar race presents an example of what I would consider to be a kind of authoritarian spirituality – that is, a spirituality that bases itself obsequious worship of power, authority and hierarchy for its own sake, for whom the freedom of the masses is an evil that must be suppressed under the authority of the gods of heaven and popular will and expression is to be crushed by a militant elite. And that’s just the start.

Rigid, insurmountable hierarchy, characterized by the inequality of its subjects, is an essential component of Evola’s notion of an ideal society, which is governed by a unchangeable metaphysical tradition, which exists outside of nature and is alien and “superior” to Man, and to which all subjects orient their actions. Evola’s favorite analogy for this was the Indian caste system, associated with Hinduism, in which the priestly representatives of Brahman rule at the top, followed by a warrior aristocracy, then the merchants, and then finally the undifferentiated masses that comprise the workers and the “untouchables”. Opposed to this sort of governance is a society where all individuals share dignity equally and everyone shares the same right of self-being, to be oneselves. In this sense, you are expected to submit yourself to an authority that has no basis in the world, no basis in reason, no basis in nature, and is completely alien to you. If that doesn’t sound like the most abominable and not to mention superstitious form of tyranny to you, then I don’t know what does. Now, let’s take note of the fact that Evola favored the caste system, because he also identified Buddhism as an inheritor of Vedic Aryan tradition. We should note this because of the fact that this is based on an erroneous understanding of Buddhism. The caste system is not endorsed by Buddhist social philosophy, Siddhartha Gautama, while not necessarily opposing the caste system, is known to have repudiated caste distinctions, and several Buddhist philosophers wrote against the authority and social system of the Vedas. Dharmakirti, for example, rejected caste as an entirely arbitrary construct that isn’t based in reality, as well as generally ridiculing the theism and the spiritual doctrine of the Vedas as foolish. Indeed, Buddhism has proven so amenable to the elevation or liberation of the lower classes that many dalits (“untouchables”) in India converted to Buddhism en masse as recently as 2018. Not to mention, one of the core doctrines of Buddhism is Anatman, literally the rejection of Atman, which is to say the rejection of a transcendental divine self identical to God; this represents such a fundamental departure from Vedic/Hindu religious philosophy that it’s baffling how Evola could have thought Buddhism was the inheritor of his beloved Aryanism.

Brahma Sahampati visiting the Buddha

A key element of Evola’s philosophy is the theme of regression, which is to say the idea that mankind as it exists is a regression from its original state, which is to say the original Hyperborean race that lived on the North Pole. He refers to this doctrine as involution, in opposition to evolution. Taken in the context of Evola’s doctrine of the solar versus lunar races, it represents an inversion of the ideas of Johann Jakob Bachofen, an anthropologist who believed that human civilization begins in a kind of primitive goddess worship or some kind of chthonic matriarchal religion before eventually progressing into a more patriarchal religion and culture. In Evola’s framework, it’s actually the patriarchal civilization that came first, then the matriarchal one. More broadly, this doctrine of involution holds that it is not humans that evolved upwards from apes, but rather apes that devolved from an original “superior” race. This, of course, represents a total repudiation of the Darwinian theory of evolution, which is of course so backed by mountains of evidence at this point that you wonder how anyone can deny it. You might be tempted to say that, in Evola’s time, this wasn’t so well-established, but in fact Evola was very much aware that evolution was consistent with scientific thinking, which is why Evola rejected science altogether, not least on the grounds that he thought modern science was unreliable on the grounds that it was based on “profane” materialistic premises. Instead of science, then, he bases his doctrine of involution on “tradition”, which invariably means his own ideas about tradition, which may or may not align with ancient pre-Christian beliefs to varying degrees. And yes, pre-Christian is operative here, since Evola rejects both Christianity and science in favour of Roman paganism, or more or less his own revival thereof, based on an esoteric interpretation of Roman paganism influenced by a combination of mystery religion, Hinduism and especially Tantra, all interpreted of course through the ideas of people like Rene Guenon, who he considered to be the master of his epoch. Although Evola is adored by modern fascists, and many of his ideas do dovetail nicely with a lot of fascism, this attachment to paganism actually set him against the Italian fascist movement of his day, as Mussolini and the other Italian fascists rejected Evola’s calls for pagan revival and so did the Catholic Church. Ironically, however, Catholicism was the one sect of Christianity that Evola didn’t despise, and indeed he considered conversion to Catholicism as a form of spiritual advancement. But to return to the main point, Evola’s mysticism is divorced from any scientific understanding, cannot be verified and apprehended through reason, and therefore is to be accepted simply because it is declared by “tradition” to be so. The term we normally use for this is blind faith, and blind faith has always been a way to psychological slavery, and as such is a favored tool for authoritarian spirituality and politics.

To be honest, the theme of regression is the most striking thing about Evola’s thought in relation to the way Evola has been received in the Left Hand Path circles, because to me it creates a profound archetypal dissonance in relation to the Left Hand Path. Evola rejects the premise that human beings evolved from apes and in turn from a chain of prehistoric creatures that emerged from the sea, preferring instead to believe that we came from some fantastical race of polar sun men. I think about that and think of the gulf between this and the way people like Michael W. Ford interpret creation myths like the Enuma Elish as a kind of archetypal metaphor for the evolution from reptile to mammal to Man, the emergence of form from darkness and so on, with in a sense the dark archetypes of mythology serving as reminders of our point of origin as a place to draw wisdom and power from. In fact, many world mythologies begin with a premise of primordial darkness, sometimes embodied or inhabited by serpents, out from which creation, form, light emerges, so in a sense you find many mythological understandings in which the soul and form of man emerge not from a race of light but from a place of darkness. I don’t know if such dissonance has ever been considered or accounted for.

Lastly, I believe there is a point where Evola’s thought, and the esoteric fascist thought that derives from it, converges with, of all things, transhumanism, which also demonstrates that the transhumanist impetus is a deeply reactionary and ascetic one. Because Evola held mankind as we know it to be a degeneration from some original Hyperborean race, and because his ideal society predicates itself on an principle that is supposed to exist outside of nature, Evola held that the ideal society must cultivate values that remove human existence from the natural order so that it can ascend to “a superior dimension of life” not found in the material cosmos. Such a worldview calls for the state to rear its subjects away from material existence through service to the state and the military – essentially, the idea is that by becoming a servant of authority you transcend human existence. As nonsensical a premise as it is, it also belies a fairly basic background ethos of transhumanism: the desire to become more than human. It is for this reason that Evola apparently admired the Waffen SS of Nazi Germany. Indeed, while transhumanism itself is not wedded to Nazism by any means, it’s no coincidence that people like Jeffrey Epstein embraced eugenics for the purpose of creating a superior race while also wanting to preserve his head and penis through cryonics. And, while transhumanism is certainly broader than just the practice of eugenics, there are many transhumanists who advocate a kind of “new eugenics” – that is, eugenics but somehow sublimated to liberal values – just that they often don’t like to call it eugenics. And of course, eugenics was a central part of Nazi ideology as their means to create their new master race, which is why any talk of “new egalitarian eugenics” is compelled to take place. But whereas modern transhumanists, and to some extent the Nazis as well, embraced “scientific” (to the extent that their methodology can be called scientific) ways of acheiving their goals, mainly through technology, Evola rejected science and modern technology and instead believed that people would transcend their humanity through spiritual means by way of his esoteric doctrine.

So in summary, this is the philosophy of Julius Evola. A practically insane reactionary who opposed science because it repudiated his moonbatty racialist theories, a man who despises mankind because he thinks it devolved, somehow, from an imaginary Hyperborean race, a man whose ideal society amounts to a restoration of the Indian caste system or the Roman Empire at its worst, in the name of a tradition that cannot be justified through conscious reason or apprehended in this world, and whose spiritual and political philosophy entails the total rejection of liberty, freedom and the species-being of humanity. Evola is a profoundly negative spiritual influence, with barely any elements that can be considered positive. And the only reason we can’t consider him to be a fascist is because he thought fascism wasn’t radical enough in its rejection of modernity.

A picture of Julius Evola at quite an old age

Pete Helmkamp’s satanic fascism

Sometimes when I check my emails I get notifications from the website of Hells Headbangers Records, probably because of one time when I bought a Rigor Mortis T-shirt from them. I don’t typically complain. Hells Headbangers is a venerable metal label responsible for the distribution of countless classic metal albums, both old and new, and the emails I get from them keep me somewhat up to date about what they release, a lot of which, though, consists of re-releases of classic albums, but it is often useful in that it sometimes alerts me to bands that I hadn’t heard of beforehand. As is my instinct as a metalhead what then follows is a trip to Metal Archives or somewhere to do some light research. In that spirit, the most recent instance of this is an email telling me about a band called Abhomine, a black/metal band based in Florida, USA. Through some light research I learned about one of its members, Pete Helmkamp, and the fact that he wrote a book called The Conqueror Manifesto: Capricornus Teitan, and it’s from there that we learn about his fascist ideas.

Helmkamp is fairly prolific in the intersection between black metal and death metal. Before Abhomine, he was in more famous black/death metal bands such as Order From Chaos, Angelcorpse, and Revenge, the last of which is considered to be a pioneer in a subset of black/death metal referred to as bestial black metal (or “war metal”), which is even more extreme than garden variety black metal, death metal or any mixture thereof – the basic distinction lies in the significant influence of grindcore on the overall sound, which tends to be generally more chaotic, frenetic, and brutal than baseline black metal or death metal. To summarize, bestial black metal is not simply what you get when you mix black metal and death metal; it’s what you get when to mix black metal, death metal and crack cocaine.

The main focus here is his book, The Conqueror Manifesto, which seems to have been published in 1993 under the alias Seirizzim. In his book, he advocates a philosophy aimed at helping mankind reach a new stage in human development that he terms Homo Deus, which Feldkamp defines as the stage in which he is free from mythological thinking and morality. On the surface, his philosophy doesn’t seem that different from baseline Satanism, at least judging from what extracts from the book I can find. He bases his doctrine on “self-will”, which sounds like the kind of rebranding of Nietzschean will-to-power that would fit pretty much perfectly within Satanic philosophy, and the doctrine of might makes right certainly isn’t out of place in baseline Satanism. But from reading interviews with Pete Feldkamp about his philosophy, it’s clear that there are other undertones that are seemingly unique to his philosophy, and which reveal deep fascist leanings. We can gain key insights into his thinking via an interview he took part in with the Finnish metal zine Isten, which seems to have been undertaken during his time in Order From Chaos.

When asked about the mentality of the average American, which the interviewer characterizes as pathologically hypocritical, Feldkamp declares nearly all of humanity to be a slave race and that “only the elite ASTR will have the necessary strength and wisdom to rule”. What is ASTR? Later in the interview, Helmkamp tells us that ASTR stands for Arya Serpent Theos Race, which he believes to be a European race that once ruled much of the ancient world – he cites the Central Asian steppes, Eastern Europe, the Mediterranean, Egypt and North India as their supposed original territory. If that’s not enough he also seems to believe that Chinese civilization has European rather than Asiatic roots, citing the alleged discovery of mummified Europeans dating back to 2000 BC as proof. What this thesis comes down to when you think about it for about five minutes is the idea that Europeans ruled the Old World, which can be taken to mean that the white race, or “Aryans”, (what else could Arya refer to?) once ruled the world. If you think that seems uncharitable, just look at the way he endorses Adolf Hitler in that interview as a man who had “incredible” ideas. He even cites his sense of Germanic identity (the name Helmkamp being apparently of German extraction) as an influence on his way of thinking and acting. Therefore, Helmkamp is an ethnocentric fascist, nay, a neo-Nazi of some type, and it is laughable then that in the same interview he claims that his idea of “Heretic Supremacy” as not based on racial supremacy. There’s also something he said in an interview with Voices from the Darkside, wherein he appears to give a soft defence of eugenics:

We burn cattle in England because of a terrible contagious disease. Do we burn humans in Africa because of a terrible contagious disease? We proscribe birth control to koala bears in Australia after we allowed the population to grow out of control. Firstly, wouldn’t bullets be cheaper, and then we could utilize the meat. Secondly, do we proscribe birth control to humans that we allow to grow out of control? We proscribe rice. Indeed. Evolution does not happen over night.

During the mid-1990s, Helmkamp and The Unsane (from the Dutch black metal band Bestial Summoning) formed a group promoting his philosophy called the Heretic Supremacist Brotherhood. Take note also of this flyer they released, which seems to have been released at around the time of the release of Helmkamp’s manifesto in 1993.


As you can see, what is presented is a synthesis of Satanism, the doctrine of Aleister Crowley, Nietzschean philosophy, and the writings of Adolf Hitler. It’s generally a good rule of thumb that if you cite Mein Kampf as a key inspiration for your philosophy, and indeed you refer to your own doctrine as “following in the wake of Mein Kampf”, you’re a Nazi. In addition to this is the inclusion of the writings of Adam Parfrey, a fascist and a supporter of eugenics who in turn was beloved by fascists.

You will also notice references to OLHP, meaning the Order of the Left Hand Path. The Order of the Left Hand Path is a fascist Satanist group founded by Kerry R. Bolton in 1992. This group existed for a few years before reconstituting as Ordo Sinistra Vivendi in 1994, which then went on to become fairly influentual in the black metal underground of the early-to-mid-1990s. Bolton seems to have originally been a member of the Temple of Set, but left the group after some sort of dispute with other members. I imagine this dispute must have had something to do with his neo-Nazi beliefs because, prior to founding the Order of the Left Hand Path, Bolton had already been deeply involved in neo-Nazi and ultra-nationalist movements since the 1970s, and from there went on to have a whole network of Satanic Nazis surrounding him. In 1994, Bolton also started another Satanic Nazi organization known as Black Order, which served as a sort of on-the-ground activist movement intended to mobilize groups of like-minded Satanic Nazis, including artists and musicians, to advance their ideological goals. And if you needed some idea of the nature of Bolton’s Nazi ideology, know that he believed that the world was being dominated by what he called a “Puritan-Jewish aristocracy” seeking to impose a New World order by creating a docile and consumeristic mass via the three prongs of laissez-faire capitalism, communism, and multiculturalism, and that only Nazism and fascism could serve as effective opposition against these forces. Furthermore he published several pro-fascist books through Realist Publications and Renaissance Press, distributed a series of National Socialist texts from David Myatt from the Order of Nine Angles, and issued a rerelease of Savitri Devi’s The Lightning and the Sun. He even founded a Thelema-oriented group called The Thelemic Society in 1996, which sought to establish Thelema as a “fighting creed” for his ideology.

The doctrine of the OLHP/OSV seems to be based on an extrapolation of Nietzsche’s concept of the Ubermensch (or Overman, the next stage of human development which would overcome the perceived decadence and egalitarianism of the “last man”), in that it bases its philosophy on the idea of the Higher Man, a sort of midway between the ordinary man and the Ubermensch which serves as a nexus of transition to the Ubermensch. The goal of the Satanist in this doctrine is to start the path of embodying the Higher Man, which means withdrawal from mass society, and to create what it deems the Faustian Civilization, their name for a society which discards the various doctrines they despise (Christianity, liberalism, socialism, human rights, egalitarianism, humanism, democracy, the “welfare state” and so forth) and expunges those they deem to be inferior through eugenicsn programs, ruled by an elite composed of what it deems to be “Faustian heretics”, who through their governance will usher in the arrival of Homo Galactica, the genetically engineered successor to mankind. Just the reference to Homo Galactica is a suggestion of heavy influence from the Order of Nine Angles, whose whole schtick concerning Satanism is that it is supposed to be the religion of a space-faring Aryan empire who will conquer the universe. One main difference though is that Nietzsche is directly emphasized in OLHP/OSV in a way that he wasn’t in other groups, and they even refer to Nietzsche as “Satan’s hammer”. The organization offered courses on their version of Satanism that were taught via Collegium Satanas, which taught that Satan was an archetypal opponent of stasis and conformity (pretty much the same doctrine the Church of Satan teaches), that Nietzschean philosophy is the cornerstone of Satanism to the point that Nietzsche was the primary basis of Anton LaVey’s own philosophy, that Satanism is an anti-democratic and anti-egalitarian doctrine that seeks to bring about a god-man race through eugenics, and that the Faust who sold his soul to Mephistopheles was based on the Norse god Odin. Despite being founded by a neo-Nazi, the OLHP wasn’t a completely fascist organization, as suggested by a schism that involved a member named Tani Jantsang, who was a Marxist Satanist (yes, that apparently exists) and the creator of a group called the Satanic Reds which blended Satanism with communist ideolgy and various Eastern religious/spiritual influences – indeed, they are notable for their thesis that Satan comes from the words Sat and Tan, which they claim to be Vedantic words and concepts. The Sat-Tan doctrine is clearly visible in the writings of Kerry Bolton and the OLHP as is suggested by Bolton’s reference to this theology in a 1993 edition of Key of Alocer, a New Zealand-based underground black metal zine, though it seems this influence was apparently discarded in 1994 when the OLHP became Ordo Sinistra Vivendi.

There appears to be quite a bit of crossover between Feldkamp and a network of Satanic Nazis who promote their own idiosyncratic takes on what is otherwise the philosophy of the Order of Nine Angles and even Anton LaVey in parts, all united in what seems to be a synthesis of Satanic philosophy and esoteric racialist politics. And thus, what we have in Feldkamp is an avatar of a type of racialist Satanism that had been developing and growing back in the early 1990s, where it co-habitated with elements of the black metal underground. What’s also troubling is the knowledge that, for a time, Hells Headbangers Records sold Felkamp’s Conqueror Manifesto on their website, thus giving his brand of Satanism a platform.

What the hell is Hyperianism?

I remember stumbling across something about this new religious movement called Hyperianism one day, reading about how it was a cultic religion started by some guy named Morgue (I shit you not, that is what he calls himself) who believes that death isn’t real and neither is science. I couldn’t believe that such a religion would possibly have any appeal other than to a limited section of Gnostic occultiniks, but since then I cannot stop seeing promotional content and videos for Hyperianism on Facebook – in even comes up on a tab of related pages for my blog’s Facebook page for some bizarre reason. I’m guessing that Hyperianism is being picked up by some Left Hand Path contingents as an exciting new philosophy championed by a social outcast, and given the nature of the doctrine that I’m about to explain to you, I find this to be quite a problem. Even more concerning is the fact that, in the midst of all this, there seems to be very little information about this movement that doesn’t come from Morgue and his media (namely his YouTube channel and the Hyperianism website). I am left, thus, to write about this bizarre movement and why I believe it to be a cult.

The basic premise of the philosophy of Hyperianism seems to be that the universe, meaning material reality of course, is an illusion, and the true source of reality is, well, math. Hyperian doctrine holds that the universe is an illusion generated by mathematics, or “mathematical frequency patterns” (I may suck at math but something tells me something is very wrong here), which would mean that the universe is a mathematical construct and so are all beings within it, meaning you yourself are a mathematical being, made of mathematics. Exactly how maths is the source of everything isn’t entirely clear. The Hyperian religion has two basic goals: the first is to somehow exit the material universe by understanding the mathematical code that is the source of reality, and the second is to “create a new humanity and a new Earth”. Right off the bat, this feels a little bit like a mixture of neo-Gnosticism and transhumanism, which tells me we’re in for a high dose of ontological idealism and generally some very weird territory. The founder of Hyperianism, the man calling himself Morgue, used to be a member of the cast of a reality TV show called Freakshow, which was aired by AMC and set in the Venice Beach Freakshow (hence the name). In this capacity, he was part of the Venice Beach Freakshow line-up as a stunt artist who swallowed and regurgiated swords and inserted hooks, drill bits and pins into his body for the entertainment of onlookers.

Morgue, seen here during his Venice Beach Freakshow days

One rather unique aspect of Hyperian doctrine (and in this case unique for all the wrong reasons) is the opposition not only to organized religion but also to science. Because they despise religion in general, they don’t like to call themselves a religion (even though that’s very obviously what it is) and instead insist that their belief system is based entirely on rational thought, but they also seem to oppose the scientific method in the same way they oppose religion despite this, which is definitely something I’ve never seen in other cults or religious movements. And it’s not like how in some New Age or Hindu revivalist movements you find criticism of both science and the mainstream religions accompanied with some airheaded spiel about how science and faith can be brought together – for Hyperians, both science and faith are irrational and harmful and should be opposed. Why do Morgue and his followers oppose both religion and science? Well for them science itself is just another religion. Yes, the scientific method, based on empirical observation of phenomenon and not faith, is just another “irrational religion”, and scientific materialism is derided as a “primitive and childish view of reality”. What irony, then, that Morgue and his fellow Hyperians consider themselves to be hardcore rationalists, and sometimes refer to Hyperianism as a “cult of reason”! Indeed, their Facebook page bears the subtitle “Logic and Reason Above All Else”, which makes them sound like cringey New Atheists. Anyways, the argument for this can be summarized as the premise that people believed in wrong things in the past and empirical materialism is apparently one of those things, because he says so. Well actually because science is based on empiricism and sense data, which for some reason he believes must be necessarily opposed to reason and logic – which is senseless (no pun intended) because very often you find that rationalism and empiricism have a habit of working together rather than conflicting with each other. In fact, the only time that they do come into conflict is in the field of epistemological discussion and the particularities thereof. In every other practical sense, they compliment each other, and this complimentary relationship is necessary for the function of scientific thought – without it, you wouldn’t be able to derive an authoritative body of knowledge from science and we’d be stuck with religious faith as the primary source of authoritative knowledge. In other words, the only time when there is real conflict between rationalism and empiricism is if you’re really nerdy about philosophy.

And while we’re here let’s address Morgue’s attitude regarding deductive reasoning, which he holds to be opposite to inductive reasoning since deductive reasoning is purely rationalist and inductive reasoning is purely empiricist. Deductive reasoning is a method of reasoning that involves reaching a conclusion through a statement or set of statements within a field of epistemic certainty (often total certainty, leaving no room for uncertainty) while inductive reasoning is where a conclusion is reached through a series or pattern of cases from which a conclusion can be extrapolated. Morgue’s claim about deductive reasoning is that, through the method of deductive reasoning, you arrive at claims about reality that are 100% true, at all times, without fail. This is absolutely retarded. Think about it. That would mean that whatever claim you make using deductive reasoning would thus have to be true in all contexts, in all places, at all times, regardless of new information concerning your surroundings that might cause problems for maintaining such a claim, in a universe that is intrinsically defined by change, meaning that the conditions that we live under, the data about the world that we receive, and hence the facts of the world we live in, are constantly subject to change, meaning that our understanding of reality itself is constantly subject to necessary reassessment. How the fuck does that make sense to anyone? And the big joke is that in his video about science being a religion, he doesn’t even use deductive reasoning to arrive at his conclusion, and instead uses the very inductive reasoning he derides as being incapable of revealing the truth.

Morgue also takes the fact that mankind has been constantly re-assessing its perception of reality as a sign of the inferiority of the scientific method and its equality with religion, even though the whole point of empirical science is that it allows us to re-assess reality by means of concrete information about the external world (you know, the gathering of evidence?). It’s shallow, subjectivist nonsense designed to cultivate the idea that Morgue’s ideas cannot be understood through the lens of science (which is sure sign that you’re dealing with an unfalsifiable belief system). Just what does the fact that people believed different things at different times prove other than the very point that proponents of empirical science make all the time – that we are constantly experiencing new data and new conditions pertaining to the world around us and thus we have to make different conclusions about the world – or that the general philosophy of thought, shockingly for Morgue I’m sure, is not a static phenomenon and, like the humans it emerges from, it too evolves with time, and at a faster rate than humans themselves I might add. And on top of that, it’s not even salient or well-founded. One of his main examples is how classical mechanics was supposedly replaced by quantum mechanics, when in reality this is simply not the case. In fact, you can still take university courses on classical mechanics.

And if that sounds crazy to Morgue, consider the fact that we don’t have flat earth courses. Because, unlike classical mechanics, flat earth theory was phased out centuries ago.

Another aspect that sticks out is that Hyperians deny the existence of death. Most religions that believe in either a soul or some concept of a metaphysical reality that transcends the physical one still maintain that death is a real phenomenon in life, and indeed the concept of death is the necessary precursor of life after death. But not Hyperianism. Morgue instead insists that death is nothing more than an illusion created by the senses, on the grounds that everything else about the material world is an illusion, and because you are actually an immaterial mind made up of the same “mathematical waveforms” that make up the universe itself. This in Morgue’s view means that, even after the body perishes, you, being an eternal mind, will continue to exist. At first this seems like the most outrageous and absurd claim of Hyperianism, but really the basic premise is not too different to his overall assessment of the cosmos – that material reality is fake. In fact, if we consider that Morgue believes in a disembodied Eternal Mind that lives and exists in its present state forever, and that you are identical to this Eternal Mind, we are basically just dealing with another version of the doctrine of “soul” that is found within Christianity and many other organized religions (very logical and rational I’m sure). All of this Morgue bases on the idea that our senses, the primary means by which the human brain collects information about its surroundings, are fundamentally unreliable. Now, I know that most of us (myself included) are definitely very inexperienced when it comes to death, and I don’t know anyone who can tell me what death is like, but I think that unless you’re a Hyperian we can all agree that death is real. For a guy who did dangerous stunts for a living, Morgue sure seems sheltered from the harshness of life that would normally attune him to the spectre of death in the world. Besides, whilst it is true that the senses are far from perfect, imperfection is by no means to be confused with unreliability (perfection is a thing that barely exists within the human realm), and it is definitely possible to improve the senses in everyday life so to talk of them being imperfect is rather moot – imperfect beings may be imperfect, but they are capable of self-cultivation, self-improvement and self-transformation. This, coupled with the fact that senses consist much of what we have insofar as the basics of understanding the world around us are concerned, renders it very improper for us to simply dismiss the senses. But of course, this is just me invoking the sensibility of scientific realist thought, and that’s a big no-no for Hyperianism, or really almost any form of philosophical idealism.

Now, here’s the part I want to stress. Science is considered an irrational and primitive religion according to the Hyperian doctrine. The irony in this is that the Hyperian doctrine retains all manner of religious ideas that are then re-imagined through his lens so as to sound less like their original forms and more like his own brand of pseudo-scientific jargon. For example, Morgue believes in something called “higher entities”, which sounds rather New Agey and which Morgue himself relates to ideas such as the Watchers, but instead of being angels or bodhisattvas or aliens, Morgue identifies these as “highly evolved mathematical beings”, beings that have surpassed the limits of physical reality and thus exist outside of space and time, and who sometimes take an interest in “increasing your level of consciousness” and to that end they incarnate in the physical world as humans. It’s very much like the idea of guardian angels, Watchers, bodhisattvas, and Ascended Masters, but reinterpreted through the lens of “mathematics”. Then there is the belief that humans, rather than being material beings, are in fact “Eternal Mind”, which means that we are actually minds that control the bodies that are seemingly ours, and this also somehow means that we are the universe experiencing itself, which taken together reads like an idealistic form of pantheism, such as Hinduism (Brahman, of course, being the divine mind or consciousness that is God itself), and Hinduism would probably be a strong, albeit subtle, influence on this doctrine in that identification with the Eternal Mind that controls the body would be a key component of Hyperian praxis, and thus I am reminded of Hindu spiritual praxis which stresses identification with the Godhead, the eternal, immutable, divine mind that is the Brahman. What’s more, I’ve heard Morgue get compared to William Lane Craig on the grounds that both use deductive reasoning in service of their own version of the god of the gaps argument, and when your ostensibly anti-religious philosophy nonetheless shares key philosophical arguments and methods with fucking William Lane Craig, you know you’re into some really bad philosophical territory because William Lane Craig is basically just a creationist without the honesty. He even quotes Kurt Gödel, a philosopher who is sometimes cited by theists and creationists in their arguments against atheistic rationalism and empiricism, when he says “I don’t believe in empirical science. I only believe in a priori truth”.

Even the fundamental premise about maths being the source of everything reads like it could just be a replacement of spirit with math, thereby a pseudoscientific rendition of the premise that all things in the universe can be reduced to spirit. It doesn’t help that maths here seems to refer chiefly to some idea of immaterial wavelengths that supposedly explain the soul. Now I realize that seems like a pretty bold statement on my part, but consider the fact that Morgue never actually explains the nature of the mathematics in any of the material he puts out in public. In his video about science, for example, he shows us some mathematics when referring to mathematics as the basis of deductive and rational philosophy, and he never explains to any of us just what that math is and why it proves his point. And given that the rest of his philosophy is recycled New Age, neo-Gnostic doctrine anyway, in the absence of an actual explanation of that math or its connectivity to anything I’m left thinking that “math” for Morgue is just the redressing of ideas about the pure spirit in pseudo-scientific language. It’s not called mathematics because it actually is mathematics, but because calling it maths makes what you’re talking about sound scientific even if it’s not. And the way in which Hyperianism leans on mathematics as the answer to all problems and indeed cognate with spirit itself reminds me very starkly of what the great physicist Roger Penrose talked about when he complained out people embracing certain ideas about physics on the basis of the mathematics, namely how aesthetically pleasing the math is. So on the whole the project of Hyperianism strikes me as a pretty embarrassing example of the principle of style over substance.

What I assume Morgue thinks the universe looks like

The Hyperian philosophy at first glance sounds a lot like the philosophy of Plato, who held that the universe was inferior to the immutable principle of The Good that exists beyond it. The Hyperianism website even makes reference to Plato’s famous Allegory of the Cave when it says “You will be as one who walks out from a dark cave to behold the light for the first time”. Its premise of the believer exiting reality by understanding the nature of reality in accordance with its teachings reminds me of some interpretations of Buddhism and its doctrine of Nirvana, and specifically Mahayana Buddhism with its premise that an individual can become a higher being capable of emancipating others by transcending reality (in this case a Bodhisattva), or Gnosticism and its doctrine of the material world being the creation of a false god and with the True God (or Bythos) replaced by mathematics. In practice, the Hyperian movement contains many aesthetic and rhetorical trappings similar to the kind employed by groups such as the Assembly of Light Bearers (formerly known as The Greater Church of Lucifer). For example, on their Facebook page their logo says “No Master, No Slave”, which sounds like something you’d see on some Left Hand Path memorabilia (ironic, considering the symbol of Hyperianism looks like it’s intended to resemble the symbol of BDSM). Then there’s the fact that his numerous videos evoke similar tropes such as “Why Loving Everyone Doesn’t Work”, “The REAL Meaning of the Garden of Eden”, “Struggle Leads To Power and Growth”, “Why Mainstream Religion Should Be Eradicated”, “What Christians Don’t Want You To Know”, “Lightworking Is a TRAP”, “Integrating Your Shadow And Light”, and quite a few videos about the ideas of Carl Jung (lord knows if he actually understands them). I’m almost sickened by how much of this stuff reminds me of contemporary Luciferianism because it seems like he’s pretty much just ripped off stuff that Michael W. Ford talked about while insisting that it’s his own doctrine. In fact, in the Hyperian Q&A, there’s a question that asks “Is this Satanism?”, and the answer to this is this:

No. In general LaVeyan satanism is a materialist, hedonistic system. We embrace our light as well as our darkness. We are about both the individual and the whole. Our system is underpinned by the most advanced mathematics in history, revealing our purpose and the trajectory of the universe.

Other than the part about mathematics, most of this is pretty much identical to the doctrine of the Assembly of Light Bearers in that it’s basically the answer that they would give when asked about the difference between their philosophy and Satanism. Not to mention they claim to be “life-affirmers”, not “life-deniers”, and oppose Eastern religion in particular for this reason, and they also tend to draw from Nietzsche. But there’s a bit of hypocrisy or contradiction here: how can you hold to a life-affirming philosophy when the goal of your philsophy is to exit or transcend the material universe? There’s also the misanthropy, as suggested by how in one of his videos Morgue compares humans to dogs “begging to be pet”, and brands them as pathetic, and the classically elitist sentiment that only a few people (likely meaning Morgue and his followers) know the truth while everyone else lives in mental slavery. The irony of said elitism, of course, is that he and his fellow Hyperians like to bill themselves as a kind of populist religious movement, railing against the 1% and aiming to create a system for the people and by the people, which to me is strange because they’ve already established they are the only ones who know the truth of reality. I mean, why complain about a 1% when you have practically defined yourself as the 1%? Are you the elite or aren’t you? And if you read the Age of Unity page on their website, it doesn’t seem like they really desire to be a movement for the people, as in the masses at large. It says, “When 10% of the world population supports this vision, it can be realized throughout the world, and we will reset the calendars to year zero, marking the beginning of the Age of Unity.”. That means that although Hyperians sometimes complain about being ruled by an elite, they still basically just want a new society that is still lead and controlled by an elite movement, a minority ruling over the majority like shepherds over sheep. How exactly is that anti-elitist?

In any case, this seems to be a belief system designed to appeal to alternative subcultures and from there certain corners of the populus that might be attracted to Left Hand Path ideas – in fact, I dare say it’s probably a new manifestation of Left Hand Path doctrines in itself, just that it’s a really shitty one. In fact, given all this plus his background as freak show entertainer in California makes me believe he’s trying to become the next Anton LaVey, and besides the mallcore goth look I’d say there are some similarities. Both of them have some backgrounds in the entertainment industry, specifically beachside freakshows/circus acts, both of them dabbled in the occult and magic, both of them cite Christian backgrounds (in LaVey, it is his claims to see Christian congregations repent of the sins they indugled in carnivals, and in Morgue, it is his direct upbringing in a conservative Christian household), and both of them seem to have this idiosyncratic hodge-podge of self-created, semi-occult philosophy. However, unlike Anton LaVey, Morgue has a knack for taking the justifiable contempt for organized religion into the realms of ultra-progressive woo, such as the idea that religion is responsible for all sexism, homophobia, racism and other forms of bigotry in human history, which I’d say appeals to intersectional audiences in a way that I doubt LaVey ever could have. On the whole though, he does bear similarities to LaVey and his belief system isn’t very out of place in the contemporary Left Hand Path. The major distinction is that it bases itself not on an archetypal current or a magickal or spiritual tradition (modern or ancient) but instead on “mathematics”, or more or less his vague rendition of quantum mechanics. In other words, despite him basically ripping off Luciferian ideas in some ways, I can’t actually call him a Luciferian because he doesn’t position himself in relation to Lucifer as an archetypal idea, or at least not openly so anyway. But to tell you the truth, I’m not at all certain what Jungian psychology, the Garden of Eden, lightworking and Nietzschean philosophy have to do with mathematics, let alone this grand mathematical wavelength that is supposed to be at the source of the cosmos. I’ve gone through whatever material I can find on Hyperianism and it doesn’t seem to be clear what the connection is, which leads me to believe that there is no connection between them Morgue is just copying various ideas from various places and putting them together, with no point of connectivity between them. In other words, he’s not so different from your average New Ager.

Then again, goth subculture and New Age spirituality haven’t always been mutually exclusive

Now, why is Hyperianism a cult? Well there are numerous signs. For starters they insist that their belief system is not a belief system but a “knowledge system”. What is a “knowledge system” exactly? Just another way of saying they think they have all the answers. They claim to have a unified theory of everything, superior to empirical science, based 100% on logic, reason and deduction (note that evidence never comes up, because the need to produce evidence comes from the premise of empiricism, does it not?), that teaching is pretty much just from Morgue’s word, meaning that Morgue is the source of the truth of everything, he and his followers are the only people with the truth. Literally, he believes that everyone is brainwashed except himself and his followers. How is that not a cultish tendency? And, why “knowledge system” exactly? Atheists tend to not think themselves as having a belief system, but they would otherwise just call it a philosophy, rather than a religion. But with Hyperianism, these guys hate religion and the idea of having a belief system, but what they call themselves really isn’t so different just that they swap one word with another to just to say “our belief system is better than yours because reasons”. Then there’s the way that, as we’ve established, Morgue goes around taking existing concepts and not really re-defining them except through “mathematical” window-dressing. According to one observer he even makes use of the “as above, so below” hand sign, and owns it as though it were his own creation. He’s basically taking a collection of pre-existing religious ideas and billing them as purely rationalist and indeed anti-religious ideas; this itself would not be cultic but he doesn’t really have the honesty to admit that this is what he’s doing, and he’s really keen on the idea that he’s communicating a unique and new spiritual doctrine. But oh wait, it’s not new is it? It’s “timeless knowledge”, we’re told. Well, I suppose it is, in the sense that it’s just rehashing tropes of Plato’s philosophy and New Age nonsense and filtering it through the lens of goth subcultural sensibilities.

Then there’s the fact that, apparently, in order to become a member, you must first purchase one of Morgue’s books, Book Zero, and even then it seems that this book is infrequently released – it is only sold for one hour (3am-4am PST) of each day, or each week depending on who you ask. I mean, why? What is the point of such a practice if not solely to gratify your own ego by generating an air of pomp and event around your stupid books? But that’s not all. You have to buy that book because, by buying that book and becoming a member, you apparently gain access to more information about the movement that isn’t found in the website for non-members or in Morgue’s videos. Such access is granted via a code that is given to those who apply for membership, answer a questionnaire and then buy Morgue’s book. Furthermore financial donors seem to gain access to additional content. This, contrary to the movement’s attempt to claim to populism, further cements the elitist nature of the movement, and is suggestive of the possibility that Hyperianism is just a grift designed by Morgue to make money. And apparently his rationale goes something like (as one Satanist recounts) “you pay colleges to learn more why wouldn’t you pay to learn more of this?” – funny, he goes on and on about the 1% and can’t even bring himself to oppose the logic of privatized, paid tuition (as it turns out, he is an elitist and personally stands to benefit from it). And of course, there’s one classic sign of cult tendency – the isolation of its members from their loved ones. On a Reddit called r/cults, one person reported that his younger brother joined the Hyperians after becoming an avid follower of Morgue’s philosophy, and that since then he began isolating himself from even his closest friends on the grounds that he would never be understood because he possesses “secret knowledge”, and conversation between the two brothers became all but impossible.

Their believers also have an apparent proclivity towards violence, or at least some of them openly talk about killing people who criticize their belief system and its founder. One believer posted about how he would like it if he could “gut” critics of Morgue like a fish. Other members/supporters do not push back against such tendencies, and some even encourage it. Then there are the accounts of certain Hyperians who are referred to as “Hyperian Outcasts”, meaning people who may often still sympathize with the spiritual philosophy of Hyperianism, but have left the Hyperian movement out of dissastifaction or disillusionment with either Morgue or the “Revenants” within the group. Revenants, a term that used to refer to a spirit of the undead, is the name given within Hyperianism to people who take part in something called Project Fallen Star (named for a Nietzsche quote, of course). Now what is Project Fallen Star? It’s a project aimed at uniting all “Synth Minds” (whatever the fuck that is) by spreading the doctrine of Hyperianism on social media – basically it’s a hyped up PR project. Revenants are required to have social media outlets, particularly Facebook and Instagram accounts, which tells me that the main purpose of these people is to function as social media influencers on behalf of Hyperianism. Anyways, Outcasts typically complain about mistreatment by these Revenants, which seems to consist primarily of gaslighting Hyperians who have concerns about the leadership. Other Outcasts draw their attention towards the leadership of Morgue himself. They frequently complain about Morgue having high-ranking Hyperians verbally abuse people in order to viciously undermine the self-confidence of members who might question him, as well as Morgue’s apparent lack of financial transparency. Some Outcasts used to be Revenants with the Hyperian movement but left because a lot of the Revenants weren’t being paid by Morgue, and with no explanation. One such Outcast recounted that she donated money to Morgue’s group and never received payment for any work done for the movement. No one in the group knows how much money Morgue has, or what he’s doing with it, or why he isn’t paying anyone in his movement. All they know is that he clearly has enough money to spend on a nice apartment, some fine wines and jiu-jitsu lessons. And if that sounds familiar to anyone in the Left Hand Path, it should, because that’s basically the same shit Jacob McKelvy got up to. When he used to be leader of the Assembly of Light Bearers (then called the Greater Church of Lucifer), he embezzled money from the organization to spend on himself, which resulted in GCOL members and supporters asking about delayed transactions and product deliveries. He never told anyone where that money went, and he resigned his leadership post before we all figured out what he was doing.

I’m sure my readers remember this asshole

But it’s here we get to the other major sign of cult behaviour. Not only do Revenants deny the veracity of the claims made by Outcasts, stating them to be outright false, they also accuse dissenters and Outcasts of cultivating a personal vendetta against Morgue, even though many bear no visible ill will towards him, and warn that they have eyes and ears inside group chats. That’s right, the Revenants are basically spies. They infiltrate the groups and chats of Outcasts by sending one of their own into them disguised as Outcasts so that they can spy on the Outcasts and send what goes on in those chats back to the other Revenants. This reminds me of something I would expect from Scientology, what with the “Squirrel Busters” who harass former members of the Church of Scientology who then go on to publicly criticize the organization. Morgue, of course, denies any involvement or oversight over this practice, and insists that many of the Outcasts are simply trolls who are trying to make Hyperianism look bad, which is hilarious because frankly you don’t need outside help to make a science-denying New Age cult run by a low-budget Marilyn Manson look bad. And when asked about financial transparency, Morgue whined that living in Los Angeles is expensive, while never doing the thing his critics want him to do, which is to address the question of how much money he has, how much of it goes to his organization, or why he isn’t paying any of his Revenants. In general I’m forced to conclude that Morgue is, like every other cult leader, hiding misconduct by deflecting away from the issue, which tells me that he is in fact guilty of the things his critics accuse him of doing.

Now, to be fair, so far we don’t know a whole lot about Hyperianism, and what we know so far tells me that, although it probably is a cult, it isn’t one of the most dangerous cults around. And, ostensibly, other than the maths and the opposition to science, Morgue does play on some interesting themes that, outside of the context of Hyperianism, would be good ground for expanding upon. But that should not be reason for anyone to let their guard down. If you were to search on Google or YouTube about Hyperianism, you might find a few critical voices here and there, but most of the information you will find about Hyperianism comes from Morgue, via his YouTube channel and the Hyperianism website. The extent of information about Hyperianism that doesn’t come from Morgue consists of two Patheos articles by David Gee on his No Sacred Cows blog, an Uloop post by Jared Hammer, a few YouTube videos from people criticizing Morgue, and the Outcasts. The rest of the information about it comes from Morgue, especially if you’re searching on YouTube. This, combined with the fact that Morgue paywalls additional information about Hyperian doctrine, rendering it exclusive to people who become members and buy the book or donate to his organization, means that Morgue basically has the monopoly of information and narrative control as regards Hyperianism, and that’s very bad news considering I don’t believe Morgue to be a reliable narrator.

Just trust me on this one. Don’t take him seriously.

It is my advice therefore that people should stay away from Hyperianism, stop spreading it everywhere and show this post along with the writings of David Gee and others to anyone who might be considering joining Hyperianism.

The echoes of the past that today’s intelligentsia probably don’t want you to think about

My brother had to sit through another contextual studies lecture at university, this time he was introduced part 1 of a four part documentary series by Adam Curtis entitled “Century of Self”, which is all about how the thinks the idea of a consuming self was manufactured by society, and last night he invited me to watch it because he wanted to see what I thought of it. And let me just say something up front: I personally detest Alan Curtis. I think of him as someone who trades in sophistry and generates a living from it (does that Nixon documentary he aired on Charlie Brooker’s Newswipe ring a bell?). Weirdly enough it’s not so much that the documentary I’m talking about is based on complete lies – there is factual content to be found within the documentary – but Curtis’ argument is also misleading in that he presents half-truths alongside otherwise factual information. But the documentary also provides a fascinating window into a historical parallel to the political travails of the current era.

This film (which is subtitled “Happiness Machines”) centers around the exploits of a man named Edward Bernays, an advertiser, propagandist and innovator in the realm of public relations during the 20th century, and how according to Curtis he was responsible for the creation of modern consumer culture. Right away I have a problem with the essential premise. According to the film, Bernays seemed to view humans as passive consumers who are ruled by drives that they cannot control (he even seemed to view the masses as stupid), and that by satiating their desires they can be controlled, deriving his theory from Freud’s theory of the unconscious. But strangely enough the film often makes it seem like Bernays is responsible for implanting desires into peoples’ heads that they didn’t have before, and that this is where today’s consumer culture comes from. But it seems to me that all Bernays did was exploit desires that were already there and do what we already know advertisers do today – take a desire that already exists, and appeal to that desire and convince people to follow that desire via persuasion.

I had a similar discussion in a dissertation-themed contextual studies lecture once when one of the speakers talked to us about advertising and subliminal messaging – he argued that we are driven to want something that we otherwise wouldn’t through carefully crafted imagery, while I pointed out that many of the drives being exploited via advertising – lust, envy, hunger etc – are already present in the human condition. All the advertisers do is find a way to titillate them in order to achieve the outcome of consumption. It’s not exactly brainwashing in the strictest sense. The film makes it seem like corporations and politicians create desires, but desires are not created by others. They already exist, just that they can be awoken through the power of suggestion. And man’s desires and needs are part of a hierarchy – we don’t just pursue only what we need, and then have to be conditioned into wanting more. Once we have the lower parts of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs fulfilled, we can pursue other desires, like the desire for self-improvement for instance. Hell, I’d argue that even the basic needs spring from one desire in particular – the desire for self-preservation. After all, if we didn’t want to stay alive, we would we bother killing animals for food, building shelters or fires for warmth, drinking water or even sleeping, and if we didn’t want to continue a line of succession for the species, why would we procreate?

The film seems to present Bernays as responsible for getting people to trade stocks, pushing what would become the first department store, convincing women to smoke and getting an entire generation of Americans to believe in the magic of the free market. And this guy claims he’s not a leftist. For starters, the idea of a market where people trade in stocks or bonds has been around for centuries, dating back to at least the 17th century via the East India company, and the New York Stock Exchange we know it has been around since 1817. Also the first department store was established in 1858 and the idea that begun to spread before the 1920’s, free market capitalism has a long history, the ideological formations of which dating back to the likes of Adam Smith, and women have been smoking for centuries (though there may have been a social taboo surrounding it). And you can find most of that out with only a couple seconds or a minute on Google. It’s not great that you can find flaws in Curtis’ case so easily.

Apparently, at some point during the 20th century, confidence in the idea of democracy was weakening. It was increasingly believed that Man was incapable of making informed, rational decisions, was dominated by unseen and dangerous unconscious forces, and because of that Man was by nature an “unrational” being and needed to be controlled. Bizzarely enough the Russian Revolution, which happened in 1917, was seen as evidence by the media class of the day, who were according to Curtis influenced by the pessimistic view of human nature held by Sigmund Freud, that Western democracy needed to be challenged because of the mob mentality that erupted in Russia was proof that humans could not make rational decisions, seemingly invalidating a key principle of democracy, despite the fact that Tsarist Russia was both an autocracy and an empire – the opposite of the kind of republican democracy envisioned in the United States of America. Of course, not that the Soviet Russia that succeeded it was any better (in fact, arguably it was somehow worse). Bernays’ daughter Anne recounts who her father felt that democracy could not be trusted because he couldn’t trust “all those publics” to make the right judgement and not vote for the wrong person or have the wrong desires, which sounds like what the Remoaners were saying after they lost the Brexit vote. Are you beginning to feel like you’re in familiar territory yet?

A contemporary of Bernays, a political thinker by the name of Walter Lippmann, advocated for the concept of an elite group of people to manage democracy on behalf of the people and control their opinions through communication and media. Apparently he too was influenced by Freud and was interesting in psychological persuasion techniques, like those of Bernays, to convince the people that what Lippmann’s elites said was true, one of the methods of which was to form a “barrier between the public and the event” thereby allowing for the manipulation of information for public consumption. Well fuck me if that doesn’t sound like the mainstream media we have now. Oh and by the way, Lippmann also happened to be an advocate for socialism, and he was a member of various socialist groups including the Socialist Party of America. And isn’t that just magical? A socialist intellectual arguing for an elite, aristocratic class to stand above the people? Why is that relevant you might ask? Because it sounds a lot like the thought process behind the conception of the idea of the European Union before World War II and the actual foundation of what would become the European Union afterwards. Before World War II there was The United States of Europe, a paper released by Arthur Salter which documented his vision of supranational governing entity to govern the nations of Europe. After the war, Monnet, another leftist (not a died-in-the-wool socialist, but a consistent supporter of the French Socialist party), paved the way for federalism by working to pool economic resources into what would become the European Union, which over the years would grow from a supranational economic power, to a full-blown supranational political one with its own anthem, treasury, borders and the ability to override the will of its member states, managed by an elite technocratic class who cannot be elected or ousted democratically and obsessively and single-mindedly march toward the fruition of their “European project”. It’s like a billion-piece jigsaw puzzle suddenly falling into place, to quote Dave Lister in Red Dwarf, as if I needed another reason to despise the American, British and European left.

Bernays apparently felt like they had to guided from above (like in conventional religion, much?), believing in an “enlightened despotism”. Which, honestly, sounds a fucking lot like Bob “MovieBob” Chipman’s Twitter feed, a Guardian column about Internet “hate speech” or every filum of technocratic, anti-democratic dribble spewed from the leaders of the European Union. Assuming this is true, then we have a modern media and so-called liberal class that is full of people who follow the doctrine of Edward Bernays to this day. For today’s progressives and “liberals”, you can’t trust humans to think for themselves and you can’t trust them to be active citizens in a democracy, democracy doesn’t mean anything if they don’t vote the right way, so you have to convince them through propaganda to vote the right way or else the end of civilization as we know it is inevitable. That, my friends, is the philosophy that our political class follows today.

Apparently there was talk of the idea that, because Man is unrational and driven by unconscious desires and needed to be controlled because of it, a leader could ascend to power by taking the deepest fears and deepest desires of a subject or a citizen and appeal to those desires and use them to your own purposes. When I saw that with my brother I thought “this sounds like naked demagoguery” – demagoguery being when someone neither uses conventional reason nor speaks truth to power, instead cynically manipulating deep-seated longings and even prejudices in order to ascend to power – and this is what every Guardianista, every Clintonite and every modern leftist think that the likes of Donald Trump, Nigel Farage and the European far-right are doing, to the point that I honestly ask myself, how come the former are not ardent supporters of the latter?  If they truly believed that Donald Trump existed solely to give . Oh that’s right, because Hillary was the one actually doing this. Using sentimental slogans (Stronger Together anyone?; by the way, the Remain camp called and they want their originality back) and appealing to the vapid political and social climate of the day (for fuck’s sake she even had selfies taken of her as part of her campaign) rather than honestly addressing the issues outside of towing the Democratic party line. And that’s not getting into her corporate backing or the numerous wrongdoings that are now out in the open for all to see.

Or maybe it’s not because of Hillary. Maybe it’s because the media is the one decided what the terms are for being a demagogue. Someone speaking truth to power on anything, to those people, whilst going against the established order of things is a demagogue to those people. Either that, or it’s their job to make you believe that this is the case – which, let’s be honest, it is!

By the way, if you want to see what an actual demagogue looks like in my country, consult Owen Jones’ speech at an NUS rally circa November 19th 2016.

Getting back to the point, we also have Sigmund Freud coming out with his own take on civilization, which he felt was not an expression of human progress but instead nothing more than a necessary cage for human passions that would otherwise become dangerous. Apparently Freud felt that humans constantly needed to be controlled, and freedom of self-expression was impossible because it would bring about destruction. The implication is, thus, that humans are incapable of controlling themselves and constantly need to be guided by someone else. The problem I have with this is that this is not the proper remit of a government. It is true that humans can’t contain the savagery of a lawless state of affairs on their own, try as they might, and there is the need to outsource the need for security and stability to a larger body of power (hence, government). But a law enforcement can usually only contain savagery and criminality after the fact, they cannot and should control the passions of a citizenry. The onus is on individuals to at least attempt to control their own passions. Otherwise, if you want to live in a Demolition Man or Minority Report style world then go ahead – enjoy governments that act on the thoughts, feelings and desires of others rather than on actions and real issues and actively attempt to control or outright police them at the expense of your own freedom – but I would rather not. And the idea that civilization doesn’t bring content? Sounds like something I actually used to believe not too long ago, but now recognize as bullshit. Don’t get me wrong, modern civilization has its problems and can be a limiting force on the human spirit, but the idea that civilization doesn’t bring content or progress can be refuted by literally any technological and economic advancement that has ever been made in any civilization in the realms of not just entertainment, but also medicine, security and raising the standards of living. Anyone who actually believes that people aren’t happier living in a civilized society than otherwise should spend sometime in the pure state of nature, divorced from civilization and its benefits, and then see if that makes you much happier (I’m looking squarely at the anarcho-primitivists).

Let me tell you, I find the central premise of Lippmann and Freud’s assessment of human nature and democracy and their proposed solutions to both to be ultimately insensible. Don’t get me wrong I am apprised of the fact that there is indeed the innate capacity for savagery within the human species, and the fact that human history with resplendent with accounts of violence, war and mayhem, whether it’s in the name of either God (or the gods), a higher set of ideals or simply perceived self-interest. But I am also apprised of the underrated capacity for what others might call humanity. We are, at least in part, social animals. One of the key aspects of our survival as a species is the ability and willingness to cooperate with each other to achieve a desired goal, in fact I am willing enough to concede that certain fundamental aspects of our civilization is probably doomed without it. But more importantly I’d like you to just ponder for a moment: if we are all irrational, all eternally guided by unconscious forces and we are in no position to control ourselves, then who is? Who is enlightened compared to the rest of us beasts? Who then is fit to control us besides the strong, and the next strongest after him? What is the guarantee that the philosopher kings that Lippmann and his modern inheritors (like the EU and MovieBob) advocate for aren’t going to be exactly as irrational and beastlike as the rest of us? If we are not without sin by dint of our very humanity, why are they without sin, and how is that decided? This is why I don’t like the benevolent dictatorship concept. Not simply because at the end of the day it’s still a dictatorship, but because I don’t trust the dictator be benevolent, especially given that human history is also resplendent with the fallibility or outright corruption and even despotism of its leaders and elites. And ultimately, these people, whilst holding us as utterly savage and as falling short of their ideal of a rational human, hold that the solution is to controlled by an elite class who they expect us to believe will not be more savage than us.

Case in point, we get to how the Nazis seemed to take the ideas of Bernays and the growing despair about democracy and ran with it, blaming democracy and capitalism for economic decline and unemployment and that by sacrificing individual liberty and giving up the will of the people to a totally centralized state under National Socialism. You see, the 1930’s was a time that began fresh off the heels of the Great Depression, and this caused people to lose faith in both democracy and capitalism. At the same time eugenics was a part of popular ideology and was seen as desirable, while fascism was a growing ideology that was gaining some support, including in UK (with the British Union of Fascists), Japan (with the rise of extreme militant nationalism) Spain (the rise of fascist groups such as Falange) and Italy (with the rise of Mussolini). Nazi Germany thus can be understood as an unfortunate product of its time – a time were desperation and a crisis of confidence in democracy led people to genuine political extremism (unlike the modern populist wave that is still being spun as political extremism). And guess who admired Bernays’ work and used it to build the foundations of his own propaganda campaign? None other than Joseph Goebbels. He kept Bernays’ books in his personal library and studied them attentively, despite the fact that Bernays himself was a Jew and Goebbels a Nazi (not that the Nazis didn’t believe that Jews could collaborate with the Nazi regime, of course). From there, the Nazis aggressively propagandized the German people to accept the rule of a political elite with complete control over German society that would eventually destroy anyone it deemed undesirable.

For a party that embraced the idea that democracy threatened to reek destruction upon society, we all know the barbarism they inflicted on Germany and the nations it conquered in pursuit of its ideological goals. Just think about it: the Nazi Party wanted to save the German people from the “irrational” power of selfish individualism and the destruction it was perceived as causing by inflicting an irrational totalitarian regime upon the German people and liquidating people on the basis of race, ethnicity, sexuality and political opinion? This, though it is an extreme example, is a demonstration of why I find the Lippman and Bernays way of thinking to be internally inconsistent. For an influential political intellectual and a talented propagandist, they were both fools.

And you know what I find unbelievable? If Curtis was correct then we must come to the conclusion that the Second World War traumatized the entire world, with the Western world particularly troubled by the horrors inflicted by Nazi Germany, and yet the Western World has somehow managed to convince itself that the path to saving itself from repeating those horrors is by applying the same philosophy of propaganda, and the worldview that accompanied it, that the Nazis via Joseph Goebbels built on and utilized in order to convince the German populace that democracy needed to be discarded, the state needed absolute control of public life and that Jews, non-Aryan Europeans, gays, political opponents and other “untermensch” needed to be exterminated. That is nothing short of the grandest folly that the Western world has ever imbibed in, grander even than the phenomenon of political correctness and cultural Marxism we are seeing today, itself still carried forward by the doctrine of propaganda. Among the clear lessons of World War II is not that there is a dangerous force within humanity that must be controlled at all costs, but that some of worst horrors in human history were incited by the propaganda that men like Bernays and Lippmann thought were instrumental in subduing the irrational powers that caused them!

Yet here we are, living in an age where the mainstream media in the Western world can lie to your face in order to try and control what you think, and now outright browbeating the people with the causes of activist journalists, and Western leaders view the solution to the world’s ills as being more centralized control over the lives and minds of their citizens. And at the vanguard of this is the modern “liberal” left, who have been supporting a propagandist media, corporatist politicians, authoritarianism, and social engineering and they been in the business of propaganda through the media and through universities in order to disseminate their ideology.

The connection between all of us is the zeitgeist of Bernays’ and Lippmann’s time – the zeitgeist where Freud’s view of human nature has been taken as the basis of a worldview that holds that human beings must be controlled by a higher societal force in the form of an elite class that will propagandize them by manipulating their emotions and desires, because they thought humans could not be trusted to make rational decisions –  a view that, if Curtis is right, was discredited by the rise of scientific political polling. The rise of fascism in the 1930’s sprung out of this zeitgeist, and the modern antipathy towards democracy among the progressives echoes it. For all the sophistry that’s sometimes scattered throughout the film, there is a valuable window of insight into a historical parallel, if not a historical root, to some of the modern travails of our political climate.

Fuck Edward Bernays, fuck Walter Lippmann and fuck the modern inheritors of their way of thinking.

Now I would like to address the people who took the side of the mainstream media, social media, popular groupthink and the ideological agendas that they supported: you are all fools. You have been misguided by an elite class that, despite demonstrable failure in its worldview in the past, continues to follow the doctrine of Bernays, Lippman and Goebells whilst actually believing that this will prevent fascism from claiming the world within our lifetime. The only chance you have of escaping the cycle of history is to reject the mainstream media, cut yourself off from the zeitgeist of social media and the corporate culture that lingers over it, free your mind from the boundaries of herd mentality and think for yourself. And the only chance mankind as a whole has of becoming free from this is if those of us who succeed in doing this learn to spread this authentic free thinking to others as best they can without force.

Edward Bernays (left), Walter Lippmann (middle) and Joseph Goebbells (right)
Edward Bernays (left), Walter Lippmann (middle) and Joseph Goebbells (right)

If you actually want to see the documentary here’s the link:


One concept that’s often associated with Left Hand Path traditions is the concept of elitism. I’m not sure if it’s a universal tradition among the Left Hand Path. Some Left Hand Path traditions seem to, or at least some claim to be associated with the Left Hand Path – the irony of course being that some of these “Left Hand Path” traditions actually embrace a kind of collectivism, in terms of the acceptance of an in-group and shunning an out-group – case in point, the Order of the Nine Angles, which is sometimes seen as embracing elitist concepts and spirituality, and also embraces the notion of the in-group versus the out-group (the in-group being anyone in the ONA, and the out-group being the “mundanes”, which refers to anyone who’s not a member of the ONA).

In his book Lords of the Left Hand Path, Stephen Flowers seems to refer to the Temple of Set as elitist. There is some truth to this, as there are a category of people – which, of course, consists of very few people – who are identified as “Elect”, referring to individuals within the Temple of Set who have attained the second degree or higher or have been selected by the Prince of Darkness after realizing their separation from the objective universe and its natural order.

And then there’s Peter Gilmore, personality cult leader current head of the Church of Satan, who wrote this:

[Satanism is] a religion of elitism and Social Darwinism that seeks to re-establish the reign of the able over the idiotic, of swift justice over sluggish injustice, and for a wholesale rejection of egalitarianism as a myth that has crippled the advancement of the human species for the last two thousand years. Is that something to fear? If you’re one of the majority of human mediocrities merely existing as a media-besotted drone, you bet it is!

– from Satanism: The Feared Religion by Peter Gilmore

Honestly, if Satanism really is a strongly elitist religious tradition, then that’s an aspect of Satanism that I don’t think I’ve looked into a lot (though the Book of Fire in the Satanic Bible contains verses that could be interpreted as supporting Social Darwinism and elitism). That, or I just say that because the Satanism I follow is basically a non-elitist interpretation of Satanism.

You also have individuals such as Augustus Sol Invictus (who you may remember from this year’s International Left Hand Path Consortium in Atlanta, USA), who have been associated with the Left Hand Path and espouse some kind of elitism, to the point where they are actually trying to blend LHP belief with fascist ideology. In the case of Augustus Sol Invictus, he has come out in support of eugenics programs and criticized the United States federal government for not having them in its policy because he believed that the government favored “decadent” ideology which he claimed “rejected the beauty of strength and demands the exponential growth of the weakest, least intelligent, and most diseased.” He also believes that the “strong” should govern and rule over the “weak”, which would definitely entail elitism in some form.

The dictionary definition of elitism reads as follows:

  1.  leadership or rule by an elite

  2. the selectivity of the elite; especiallysnobbery <elitism in choosing new members>

  3. consciousness of being or belonging to an elite

– from Merriam-Webster

In general, the Left Hand Path is supposed to embrace individualism above all else, which means the rejection of collectivism and collectivist ideals. But elitism, by its very definition, is preferential towards a group of people over another (or others), and its premise is actually errs towards collectivism. In collectivism, humans are divided into two key groups: one of them is the in-group, the other is the out-group. The in-group is the group that the majority or a given individual may identify with, while the out-group is the group that said majority or said given individual does not identify with. In collectivism, the in-group is given preferential status, power and the rights that those things entail, while the out-group treated as the inferior party and does not have the same rights, and there are no individual rights, only group rights. Consequently, the application of elitism would have results that I think a Left Hand Path practitioner such as myself would not find very agreeable. Going back to Peter Gilmore when he described Satanism, the irony is egregious. Satanism is a religion that espouses individualism as one of the core tenets. Elitism, put into practice, contradicts individualism and instead operate on a collectivist mindset.

In fairness though, it’s not as though every Left Hand Path individual or organization believes that the external world should follow an elitist social order. Again, I’m not sure if it’s a universal tradition in the Left Hand Path, so I can’t be sure if most Left Hand Path practitioners agree with such a premise and I certainly can’t speak for everyone – only really myself. Also, the Temple of Set is not especially egregious in its apparent elitist worldview given that they only practice anything close to elitism a hierarchy that only applies to those who join the Temple of Set. As far I know, they do not seek to impose any kind of elitism on the external world, and they don’t think that the non-elites should actually be ruled by the elites. This post is more targeted to those who an elitist social worldview.

But I cannot stress enough that, in my opinion, the application of elitism on the external world tends to only go one way – down. In the Western world today, I have been taking notice of a significant divide between the political establishment/the media and the common people, and in my opinion this divide is only getting more exposure with some key political events – namely this year’s US presidential elections and the looming EU referendum in the UK. In America, there are two populist presidential candidates you can easily point to. One of them is an old socialist, and the other is Donald Trump. Both of them seem to come from outside the political establishment and both are gunning for the power of the elite, but Donald Trump has clearly been the most successful of those two. The main reason for Donald Trump’s success is simple – he has successfully appealed to a large section of the American people who, quite frankly, are tired of feeling excluded from the political process. And that section of people happens to be a large portion of the working class.

For a long time now, the so-called liberals (I prefer the term progressives, actually) have done a good job of lording their supposed political superiority over everyone else in American culture, and even Facebook has gone out of its way to suppress people with more conservative opinions. In addition, the Obama administration proved to be a disappointment to many people, with the change promised by Obama himself not coming to pass for the most part, and you still couldn’t criticize progressivism without facing some ostracism from your liberal friends, who now doubt make a point of virtue-signalling and express their conformity through lame memes. Don’t forget the media with its glowing pro-establishment biases. Around the same time, you had political correctness gone mad, as embodied by not just the progressive/liberal establishment but also the feminist establishment, as well as a movement of young Marxists popularly referred to as social justice warriors, all demanding obedience to progressive dogma whilst considering themselves to be ideologically and morally superior to everyone else.

Naturally, a large section of people feel have had enough, and they see Trump as the antidote. The media have been falling over themselves repeatedly trying to understand Trump’s rise, and the only thing progressives seem to do is denounce Trump’s voters as racist and go out of their way to not just unfollow or block Trump supporters, but actively encourage their friends to do so as well because they’ve decided Trump supporters at large lack compassion and empathy for other human beings, little realizing that it’s exactly this intolerance to the point of illiberalism that’s spurred Trump’s voters on in the first place. It’s so bad now in the American media, that Trump’s presidency is treated as an extinction-level event, but of course some of us know what this all really means – that the establishment actually feels threatened by Donald Trump and they want him gone. We even have David Harsanyi from the The Federalist write in The Washington Post calling for the “weeding out” of ignorant Americans from the electorate. Even though the article doesn’t mention Trump at all, I have a feeling that this is establishment media butthurt stemming from Trump’s success. But the fact is, this suggestion is elitist at its core. Why? Because the author suggest that America excludes citizens from voting on the basis of intelligence, even though the right to vote is supposed to be universal – applying to literally everyone – in any democracy. Frankly, I hear stuff like this and just feel disgusted.

In the UK, we have been a part of the European Union since 1973 (back when it was called the European Economic Commission), and we voted to be a part of the single market in 1975, but the British people have had no real say as to whether or not they want to be a part of the European Union until recently, and now there’s a chance we may leave. Now the European Union is about as elitist as it gets barring actual fascism. They impose their own will on member states, and the people of member states fall out of line (like in Ireland, France, and Holland for instance) they will denounce them as xenophobic. The European Union generally does not have much respect for ordinary people at large. And as a matter of fact, neither do pro-EU politicians, like Pat Glass who referred to a voter as a “horrible racist”. And this attitude seems to be reflected in everyone else who supports the EU. In the British media, you have a cultured establishment media that is divorced from the common people (The Guardian being a perfect example) versus a more populist but less informative media that most people wind up reading (The Daily Mail being a perfect example), and if you’re a Eurosceptic you can be mistakenly denounced as racist and right-wing. Lots of people are keen on staying on the “right” side by virtue-signalling and shunning opposing viewpoints. The referendum presents an opportunity for populist backlash in this country, if all goes well at least.

Elsewhere in Europe, we see another recent example of the divide between the establishment and the people. Just two days ago, Austria almost elected Norbert Hofer, leader of a right-wing populist party called the Freedom Party. They captured the working class votes that were previously the domain of Social Democrats because they didn’t take the working class seriously enough, and they captured the conservative vote from the People’s Party – both parties represented a more centrist political establishment, and the EU had felt threatened by the rise of the Freedom Party. Other countries in Europe have had far right populist movements threaten the political establishment – France for instance has the Front National, Italy has Lega Nord, the Netherlands has the Party for Freedom, Greece has the Golden Dawn, and here in the UK we have UKIP. Some of this backlash is tied with the migrant crisis, and Europe’s response. Generally in popular culture you’re expected to just blindly support mass migration, and if you dare to question the impact that might have on your community then you’re vilified as being an anti-immigration racist. That ostracism will no doubt provide fuel for some seeking to attack the political establishment. Especially in Germany, after authorities tried to cover up the mass sexual assaults that happened on New Year’s Eve. In the UK, we also had a culture of political correctness which left authorities largely powerless to deal with the spread of radical forms of Islam and often prevented police from taking decisive action against criminals who happened to be Muslim (such as in the infamous Rotherham scandal), prompting the rise of the EDL and similar, more extreme groups.

The reason I wrote in great length about Europe and America in this post is because what’s happening there and generally in the Western world illustrates a simple truth that is becoming self-evident – when you culturally exclude a group of people deemed morally inferior in civil life instead of treating them as basically equals, it’s only a matter of time before the established order faces the prospect of populist backlash. In our world, we should be viewing our fellow citizens as morally autonomous adults or at least presume that they are – regardless of their beliefs, gender, or race – and try to engage with their ideas in order to understand and even challenge them to the best of our ability, whatever chance we get. However, it seems a lot of people decide not to do this, and instead just unfairly vilify the other side without any notion of intellectual humility, or even integrity if you think about it. When “polite society”, the establishment, the media and everyone who offers obedience to it,  people will become fed up and rise against the demand for conformity. When a political establishment becomes too divorced from the people and from reality, such a disconnect will eventually become obvious. Put simply, impose elitism on the outer world, and the people will have none of it. They will want to go for the throats of the elite, and watch their establishment burn.