The World Economic Forum is a Dangerous Religious Cult

For more than 30 years, Mikko Paunio has studied the new-old nature pantheism that was born in the UN framework, with its partners the Club of Rome and the World Economic Forum. This religion has largely replaced Christianity in Western countries. Nature pantheism specifically draws from the “wisdom” of theosophy, which is based on the esotericism and occultism of the world’s most famous con artist, Madame Blavatsky, who claimed to have discovered the “lost truth” that unites world religions.

Many Christians around the world have been worried about the rise of nature pantheism for decades and have harshly criticized church fathers who have stumbled into the new religion, such as the Pope. As an agnostic and a former long-term social democrat, Mr. Paunio finds myself in allegiance with these Christians, because these Christians do not mix faith and reality like nature believers do.

This is the story of how the wacko Temple overlords of Davos (the WEF) took over the world and how the coming winter’s trials, arising from Europe’s green energy reality, and how the trials will trash these wackos’ Great Environment Narrative.

This article was originally given on October 1, 2022, as a commissioned presentation in Finnish, at Mediapolis Tampere, in a Symposium entitled, “Salattu valta”[“Occult Power”].

Esotericists Participate in Social Discussions Covertly, Lest their Hoax-Thinking be Revealed

In the mid-1980s, I did my doctoral dissertation on vaccination compliance and vaccination coverage in the MMR project. The MMR project eliminated measles, mumps and rubella from Finland. In the last part of my dissertation, we sent a letter to the parents of 70,000 unvaccinated children, in which we detailed the aforementioned diseases and their public health significance. Within a week, Helsingin Sanomat (Finland’s The Guardian) published a letter to the editor written by an unknown lady stating that the MMR vaccination is unnecessary, because recent studies have shown that tenderness towards children raises antibodies against these diseases. A few years later, I sat on the Helsinki Health Board as a social democrat politician with the husband of the woman in question, among others. Both he and his wife were esotericists and occultists and had adopted the cult of Rudolf Steiner i.e., Anthroposophy. Later I found out that the author of the letter has translated a large amount of German anthroposophical medical literature into Finnish, including crystal, zone, aroma, and other homeopathy-like therapies. In effect, the occultists have very well positioned themselves—not only in Finland but in the whole world—and that their influence is enormous, considering that in my dissertation I showed that their share of parents was only one tenth of one percent.

Occultists always operate surreptitiously, i.e., they rarely reveal in public their real beliefs, because the justifications for their policy recommendations are so irrational that it is better to be silent about them. However, they make mistakes in the public sphere from time to time, which eventually turns the public against them. Helsingin Sanomat’s readers never got to know the background and motives behind the letter.

The Thinking of Occultists is Based on Nonsense Dressed up as Science

The Austrian mystic Rudolf Steiner, who died in 1926, saw a vision in one of his inner-space flights, and told about his vision in his 1910 lecture in Hamburg, “Natural and Accidental Illness in Relationship to Karma;” that it is favourable, in terms of an individual’s soul journey, that the body contracts measles during childhood. Due to the extremely high contagiousness of measles, it has had an even greater influence in reducing the size of the populations in the history of mankind than the more deadly smallpox, which was less contagious and occurred later and less frequently in life than measles. The aforementioned letter-writer’s whimsical beliefs and their background caught my attention, as a measles expert, and which led to a decades-long interest in the irrational thinking of occultists and the social dangers associated with it.

According to historian Anna Bramwell, a third of the Nazi inner circle were anthroposophists and that greenness was an essential part of the Nazi ideology (Figure 1). A representative figure of the Nazi faction, August Haussleiter, in the first party congress of the German Greens, was chosen to its first presidium. During the party conference in Offenbach in 1979 Haussleiter crafted the politically significant green operational theses (ecology, social, grassroot democracy, non-violence) , which the Finnish Greens copied into their own programs as such, as did other green parties around the world.

Figure 1. August Haussleiter (right), a representative of the Nazi faction, in the first meeting, in 1979, in Offenbach, of The Greens, became the chairman of the German Green Party along with Petra Kelly and Herbert Norman. Haussleiter wrote the politically significant green operational theses (ecology, social, grass root democracy, non-violence), which the Finnish Greens, along with other Green parties around the world, also copied into their programs as such. (From Mikko Paunio’s newest book, Hourulan väen ilmastovallankumous [Climate Revolution by the Nuthouse Folks], 2019). Cartoon Credit: Mika Rantanen.

Anthroposophy is often promoted as being science, even though it is nonsense. In what follows, I will cover a lot of things, the essence of which is that ultimately global agendas based on esotericism and occultism or, more simply, the new nature pantheism, are nuts and therefore socially dangerous. Thus, for example, the policy demand of the Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church, which it has imposed on itself i.e., carbon neutrality by 2030, is ultimately cruel and unethical, as I will show.

The Environmental Policies of the UN, the Club of Rome and the World Economic Forum are Esoteric Nonsense

The justifications of the UN and the World Economic Forum’s anti-enlightenment global policies, aimed at subjugating people, are dressed in the form of science, even though they are based on esotericism and the occult and are therefore only the irrational thinking of fools. The central tenets of environment, i.e., climate change and loss of nature, have been credibly dressed in the form of science with the help of the mainstream media. However, the key actors of the World Economic Forum have made big mistakes over the past few years, which will ultimately compromise their pseudo-science narrative of doom and gloom.

Back in 1991, in my first book, Vihreä valhe [The Green Lie], I made the observation that a large part of the activists of the neo-Malthusian Green anti science movement were attracted to anthroposophy or the more original occult thought, i.e., theosophy. Member of the European Parliament and vice chair of the European Parliament Heidi Hautala (Green League) was, for example, the long-time editorial secretary of the theosophical magazine Ruusu Risti, and Pekka Haavisto (Green League) and Finland’s current foreign minister—who has admitted that he was fascinated by Rudolf Steiner’s The Gospel of St John, a work that has nothing to do—despite its name—with Christianity. Anthroposophy separated from Theosophy about 120 years ago, forming its own occultist sect.

Esoteric: Personal. Occult: Hidden or Secret

What is esotericism and occultism? Esoteric means personal, which was described by the singer Pekka Streng, who died young, in his song “Inside me, I found the gate” from 1970. Divinity is in man himself, which can be found through contemplation and meditation with inner-space flights. As an agnostic and as a secular person, I find myself on the same front with devout Christians, because these Christians don’t mix religion and reality like the WEF occultists do, and because I believe these wacko temple overlords are very dangerous folks.

The origin of the emerging nature pantheism, can be found in the esoteric fabrications of the world’s most famous deceiver ever, Madame Blavatsky, at the latter half of the 19th century, although esotericism has itself a long history dating back to the Kabbalah. Blavatsky lied that she had been to Tibet and had found the long-lost truth there with the help of local gurus. With the help of her truths, she held spiritualistic sessions for people who lost their loved ones, where they contacted the other side, or did masterful eye-rolling tricks, believing that she was capable of miracles. She was finally caught when a professional British magician named John Maskelyne exposed Madame’s tricks to the whole world in 1912 with his book The Fraud of Modern “Theosophy” Exposed: A Brief History of the Greatest Imposture Ever Perpetrated Under the Cloak of Religion. However, the hype sold and many Finnish artists were also in love with Madame Blavatsky, such as Akseli Gallen Kallela.

The Covert Influence of Esotericists

When I was a young medical researcher, I became one of the secretaries of the Prime Minister’s Energy Committee in the aftermath of the Chernobyl accident in Finland. I myself and the other secretaries had to read an endless handwritten stream-of-consciousness from a committee member called Pentti Malaska, professor of future studies at Turku University of Economics and Business. He was later revealed to have been an occultist. Malaska was also Finland’s Mr. Club of Rome, in the Finnish Chapter of the Club of Rome. In the early 1990s, Malaska had almost an unlimited access to Finnish mainstream media as an energy policy expert, and he was perhaps the most central player when the new 5th nuclear power plant crashed in 1993 in a parliamentary vote. All his handwritten antinuclear comments were nonsensical and useless to us secretaries when we wrote a report to support the conclusions of the Energy Committee released in 1988. The final report of the committee laid the foundations so that Finland decided to accelerate her nuclear program in 2002, despite heavy antinuclear campaigning by the Green League and its allies.

The Wacko Ideas of Well-Known Finnish Futurists

Pentti Malaska, who passed away in 2012, was the chairman of the World Future Research Association in the 1990s. He spoke in 1997 at the association’s Brisbane meeting in Australia. In his speech, he predicted, for example, the emergence of a non-carbon-based new machine Man and made a forecast that the Internet will become the revolutionizing quantum brain of global consciousness. In dressing this theosophical esotericism in new transhumanist patterns and clothes, Pentti Malaska’s fellow esotericist and self-professed economist Paul Wildman, who has been involved in the UN future research programs, further developed Malaska’s ideas by quoting Malaska on a transhumanist platform.

Figure 2. The UN and Finland’s future research is a sandbox for occult mystics. (Figure is from Paunio’s newest book, Hourulan väen ilmastovallankumous [Climate Revolution by the Nuthouse Folks], 2019). Cartoon Credit: Mika Rantanen.

Wildman created four new machine-human categories for transhumanists which, according to Wildman, they come from outer space: 1) Etorgs, 2) Macrorgs, 3) MVorgs and 4) Psyorgs. Etorgs are lizard-like human-hostile extraterrestrial organisms known from Hollywood films, i.e., classic UFOs, Macrorgs are perhaps even galactic life entities according to the Gaia theory, which classifies the Earth as a living organism. MVorgs are apparently micro-life forms, born from bits of consciousness, and finally Psyorgs are angels, draculas and the like, born from the existence of non-material consciousness. Let us remember that Rudolf Steiner presented the true spiritual order of the world, which included angels, seraphim, cherubim, luciferic spirits, astral storms and etheric bodies.

The current dominant religion of Western industrialized countries, i.e., nature pantheism is based on esotericism and occultism, and has been promoted in the Club of Rome, the World Economic Forum and in the UN for decades.

Nature pantheism, which has become a political state religion in Western countries, has had a strong hold from the beginning, in the UN framework of sustainable development and its supporting partners, such as the World Economic Forum or the Club of Rome.

The movement that led to the current neo-Malthusian green dystopian development got a major kick-off by the Club of Rome with the famous 1972 report, The Limits to Growth, which predicted world destruction (Figure 3). The founder of the Club of Rome, the wealthy Italian industrialist Aurelio Peccei, was an occultist and esotericist. For this reason, it is not at all surprising that esotericism has been rampant in the Finnish section of Club of Rome, whose many members have been awarded Aurelio Peccei medals.

Aurelio Peccei, Theosophist

Aurelio Peccei’s 1977 book, The Human Quality, reveals his worldview based on Theosophy and the discovery of the inner self, like the songwriter Pekka Streng. According to Peccei’s understanding, the crisis of humanity is related to man’s inability to understand his role in a changed world. We are neither psychologically nor functionally adapted to life in our new demanding role. According to Peccei, the Achilles heel of humanity is finding a place in a renewed world. For Peccei, the solution to global problems can be found inside man and not outside him. The change that takes place from within a benevolent, albeit destructively behaving person and the spiritualization of his human image, contains the keys to the solution.

Figure 3. The founder of the Club of Rome, an Italian industrialist Aurelio Peccei, was a theosophist, who had stumbled upon Madame Blavatsky’s hoax. (From Paunio’s newest book, Hourulan väen ilmastovallankumous [Climate Revolution by the Nuthouse Folks], 2019). Cartoon Credit: Mika Rantanen.

The new humanism was enough for Peccei, unlike his close collaborator, Ervin Laszlo, who in his careless enthusiasm for transhumanism got sidetracked and eventually had to found his own club. No worries, because this promoter of humbug was later chosen to become scientific advisor to the Director-General of the UN Educational and Scientific Organization, UNESCO. Peccei’s new humanism promoted the distribution of wealth from north to south, in the name of world peace. He also emphasized reducing the powers of states and transferring it to supranational bodies such as the UN. Peccei envisioned a new kind of governing system for the whole world and considered the sovereignty of states to be a big problem. He strongly believed that the surrounding reality forced a person’s inner change and salvation; but he believed that the inner change of a person would take decades before the masses would be taught to live as well-behaving citizens in the Global Empire of Man dreamed up by Peccei.

From the beginning, the World Economic Forum committed itself to promoting the neo-Malthusian environmental agenda as a partner of the United Nations, idealizing poverty and borrowing ideas from the Club of Rome.

Klaus Schwab, the current head of the World Economic Forum, founded his organization on the recommendation of Henry Kissinger, the economic Nobel laureate John Kenneth Galbraith and the real Dr. Strangelove, Herman Kahn, in 1971, apparently partly relying on CIA grants already in the mid-1960s, according to investigative journalist John Vedmore in his recent long article, “Dr. Klaus Schwab or: How the CFR Taught Me to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.” The original purpose of the WEF was to secure US hegemony in Western Europe.

Early on, Klaus Schwab recruited the by far ever most influential unelected UN environment official, Maurice Strong, a wealthy, un-educated Canadian industrialist (1929–2015), to head the WEF foundation. Maurice Strong was THE central figure in pushing forward the sustainable development agenda since the UN’s first environmental summit in Stockholm in 1972 (Figure 4). He was also an inveterate occultist and esotericist.

Figure 4. The UN’s most influential unelected environment official Maurice Strong, who died in 2015, was appointed as director of the WEF Foundation early on. He was an inveterate occultist and esotericist. He acquired one million dollars from the UN food for oil program meant for the children of Iraq without consequences. (From Paunio’s newest book, Hourulan väen ilmastovallankumous [Climate Revolution by the Nuthouse Folks], 2019). Cartoon Credit: Mika Rantanen.

Baca Grande: The Wizard’s Big Mistake

The actual slip-up happened in 1990, when a Canadian journalist named Daniel Wood got to spend a week at the home of Maurice Strong and his wife Hanne on the Baca Grande farm in the state of Colorado, USA. Wood wrote a long essay about the visit in the Canada West magazine, entitled, “The Wizard of Baca Grande.” It turned out that Strong and his wife had bought the Baca Grande farm in the southern part of the state of Colorado in 1978 and had built a nature pantheistic sanctuary of all the religions of the world, i.e., Theosophy, in this once one of the largest ranches in the USA. Wood describes what he saw: “All over the landscape there are signs of this latest utopian settlement: a sophisticated Catholic Carmelite monastery; A $175,000 solar-powered Hindu temple; a remarkable mustard-yellow hut; an underground Zen Buddhist center combined with organic gardens; a house containing crystals” used in therapy by anthroposophists, etc.

The most amazing things were revealed in the conversations held for a whole week. Like Peccei, Strong considered that the most important frontline in correcting development was the competition between the innermost of human beings’ and the cosmos. But that was just the warm-up. The article revealed that in the early days, when Strong was walking on Baca Grande with a journalist named Bill Moyers, they had seen a sage bush spontaneously flare up in front of them. This, according to Wood, was a divine omen to Strong that Baca Grande would have an important role in saving the planet. According to Wood, Strong also mischievously developed a game in his mind, in which he would use mercenaries to kidnap the participants of the Davos Economic Forum and hold them hostage and end the planet’s “consumption party.” He doesn’t have to do this anymore, because the top leaders of corporate life have decided—though forced by community SDG directives in the European Union—in their passion for responsibility to stop people’s consumption parties and join hands with the WEF in a joint world management project against the rest of us. Strong’s widow Hanne is a mysticist who imagines herself to be a born-again Indian. Maurice Strong used a middleman to acquire $1 million from money meant for Iraqi children and avoided prison, unlike his middleman.

Global Politics of the Day via Klaus Schwab’s 2016 Big Mistake

Well, now the table is set for a more day-specific discussion, but before that, we’ll glance to 2016, when Klaus Schwab made a really big mistake. In January 2016, he appeared in a television interview with RTS Suisse in Switzerland, where he openly revealed his crazy esoteric occultism.

Anyone can watch that interview with Klaus Schwab because it has been published by so many YouTube channels or on TikTok. In it, Klaus Schwab tells how the microchipping of humanity will begin in ten years. At the beginning of the interview, Schwab says that microchips are first placed in people’s clothes, then under the skin and in the brain, and finally with the help of microchips implanted in the brain, people can be connected to the digital world, i.e., the Internet. According to Schwab, this creates a fusion of the physical, digital and biological worlds.

The interviewer asked to understand Schwab’s thoughts that “we are without feelings naturally connected to the digital world like this?” Schwab replies: “Yes, you speak and say, I want to connect with everyone now.” He continued: “First, we have personalized bots, and I saw Mr. Zuckerberg predicting that by the end of this year we will have such a robot serving him as a butler.” Interviewer: “Like in Downton Abbey, will we have personal butlers and servants or slaves in the future?” Schwab: “Yes, but there is a difference. This AI-equipped servant learns and is thus your intellectual partner in addition to providing physical assistance.”

Everything that Schwab mentioned on Swiss TV in 2016 is simply unethical science fiction. No such technology exists, nor will it ever exist. It’s just a cranky old man’s cranky thinking based on inner-space flights and ideas derived from occult rituals.

Klaus Schwab’s First Lieutenant Yuval Harari’s Big Mistakes, and His Science Façade Created by the WEF

Before I discuss the errors or slip-ups of Klaus Schwab’s top lieutenant, Yuval Harari, I will give an example of how the WEF deliberately created a fake natural science CV for Yuval Harari, who is actually a historian (Figure 5). The profile of globally super popular Yuval Harari, an Israeli thinker, can be found on the WEF website. In it, Harari’s natural science backdrops have been carefully crafted and displayed on the WEF website. He has been made to appear knowledgeable about the natural sciences by mentioning that he has written for the world’s leading natural science publication, Nature.

Figure 5. Yuval Harari is Klaus Schwab’s “first lieutenant” and a transhumanist and irresponsible science populist and storyteller, Figure according to critique directed at him in July 2022. Here he is giving a TED-X lecture in London, which has over nine million views, and counting on Youtube.

My surprise was great, because he actually has an article in Nature, which is titled, “Reboot for the AI revolution.” When writing to the science community, he does not tell the fantastic story he told in the spring of 2020 on the BBC’s Hard Talk and CBS’s 60-Minutes programs that the elite have microchipped people with vaccinations in order to get them under surveillance and under the control of mighty people. Of course, no such technology exists except in the wet-dreams of esotericists, or as they now call themselves, “transhumanists.” If Harari had written in Nature the same lines of thought as given in the aforementioned TV appearances, they would never have been published in Nature, and if they had been published, he would have received a tsunami of letters to the editor. Harari’s Nature article is just flat-out artificial intelligence hype, which everyone can get to know easily by Googling it. In his Nature article, he doesn’t get any closer to Schwab’s and his own fantastical ideas than this:

“So computers could come to solve problems and even analyze human emotions much better than humans, without ever developing emotions.”

In the fashionable WEF or TED-X seminars, to journalists and politicians and to the general public, and in the aforementioned TV programs, Harari delves into the nonsensical—that the scientific problems of microchipping by vaccinations to organize mass surveillance of citizens have been solved with the huge advances in science. When writing to the scientific community in Nature he does not come closer than this to his fantastic storytelling to politicians, journalists and the general public:

“The challenges posed by the integration of information technology and biotechnology in the 21st century are undoubtedly greater than the challenges posed by steam engines, railways, electricity and fossil fuels.”

In the last sentence of the essay, he then aligns with his master and his master’s ideas of doom and gloom:

“Given the enormous destructive power of our modern civilization, we cannot afford failed models, world wars and bloody revolutions. We have to do better this time.”

Klaus Schwab: It is Important to Connect People’s Brains with the internet

In many YouTube videos, Schwab’s comments on the EU Commission’s microchip initiative to Ursula von der Leyen at the WEF 2022 Davos meeting can be found. Schwab emphasized that it is important to create a connection between the human brain and the digital world.

I am not at all surprised that tens if not even hundreds of millions of people now believe that the elite are planning something sinister for the ordinary people who have, for example, refused Covid vaccinations for “reasonable” reasons. One also has to wonder that such recklessness insanity effectively has also infested mainstream media and the politicians in power.

Through Klaus Schwab’s Young Leaders program, the WEF has infiltrated Finland’s cabinet, as the current Prime Minister and Finance Minister are now students in the program (Figure 6).

Figure 6. The Prime Minister of Finland (left) and the Minister of Finance (right) of Finland as student at Klaus Schwab’s Young Leaders program. Photo: Finnish parliament website.

On February 1, 2022, prominent Scottish social media journalist James Melville tweeted with a photo: “So we invade governments,”

Here is Klaus Schwab, in 2017, discussing how the WEF has penetrated the governments of various countries with the help of its Young Leaders—such as Justin Trudeau.

As mentioned, both of Finland’s top young politicians have been selected to attend Klaus Schwab’s training: the World Economic Forum’s Young Leaders program. The length of the training program is five years, after which they are accepted as alumni in this elite group of influencers of WEF. According to Wikipedia, there are 800 WEFs Young Leaders around the world.

The Circular Economy: The Downfall of Modern Industrial Society

Real Clear Energy, a prominent American energy policy discussion outlet, approached me in August and asked me to write a story of Finland’s alleged circular economy miracle and what is meant by the concept of circular economy. With this article, I proved how the World Economic Forum used Finland’s Innovation Fund SITRA and Vice-President of the EU Commission Jyrki Katainen to promote Klaus Schwab’s Great Reset project, both in the EU and worldwide.

In 2016, SITRA, which is subordinate to the Finnish Parliament, delivered a fabricated report on Finland’s circular economy miracle and created the current circular economy concept for the World Economic Forum, which is harmful to the environment, to human health and the economy. By exploiting this concept, the European Union Commission made presentations to the EU legislators, e.g., the green finance taxonomy regulation, Jyrki Katainen’s circular economy package and the massive Fit for 55 climate package, which is still mainly in the hands of EU legislators, and which ultimately will lead to Soviet-style five-year planning and the downfall of modern industrial society.

The 2016 Report of SITRA on Finland’s 21st Century Circular Economy Miracle was Fake News

For 20 years, I have written more than a hundred official evaluations and comments on EU Commission’s waste legislation initiatives and its implementation in an EU member state. I have witnessed from my vantage point the bankruptcy of Finland’s circular economy and green waste policy in the 21st century, and how the forces behind rational waste policy finally got their way and a comprehensive municipal and industrial solid waste incineration plant network was built in Finland similar to that in Denmark and Sweden. This network is currently operating at maximum capacity due to the energy shortages caused by the green policies aggravated by the war in Ukraine. All that remains of Finland’s circular economy are smoking ruins. However, it will has to be faked because of the binding but unenforceable utopian circular economy legislation inspired by Klaus Schwab’s Great Reset.

How the Scenarios of the Globalists will Collapse in the Coming Winter

Thanks to the unconditional support given to them by the mainstream media, WEF’s insane global policies that are meant to impoverish us and aggravate environmental problems, have gained ground in all Western institutions, including protestant churches and the Catholic Church (Figure 7). For example, the Pope announced in his 2015 green Laudato Si encyclical that he had joined the crackpot temple overlords of WEF.

Figure 7. Eco-Pope Francis signed the green Laudato Si Encyclical in 2015. The Pope made a brilliant move to make himself an identity politician, which turned eyes from the Church’s horrific pedophile scandal and made him immune to scandals: “Brilliant idea, identity politician. No pedophile problems.” (From Paunio’s newest book, Hourulan väen ilmastovallankumous [Climate Revolution by the Nuthouse Folks], 2019). Cartoon Credit: Mika Rantanen.

The war against energy production launched by the Club of Rome in 1972 will have its grim final show this winter. This owes to Vladimir Putin’s successful attempts to pay for anti-fossil fuel campaigns in Europe in the 2010s and after Joe Biden came to power also in the US. These prevented fossil energy investments. Just 15 years ago, Europe produced more natural gas than Russia. This winter, Europe is completely at the mercy of Russia, because defenseless Europe, took the decision to impose energy sanctions on Russia.

The aforementioned big mistakes of Klaus Schwab and Yuval Harari, combined with the political turmoil during the coming winter, will undermine the dominance of the crackpot temple overlords and their lackeys. Cold and hunger can make people see through the lies of the environment narrative that the current mainstream media brings home to us every day. The earth’s climate is not recklessly changing and we are not threatened by nature-loss.

The whole world has begun to wake up to the WEF’s scandals of which the mainstream media is still silent and about all the appalling stories—which tells us a lot.

TikTok has a bunch of selected video clips about Schwab’s dreams to microchip the brains of the rest of us and to connect us to the internet. Above Schwab’s microchip TikTok microchip quotes it reads “29.5M views” (it is 64.5 million, and counting).

As far as I know, Finland’s responsible media have not told the Finns that Schwab has bragged that he chooses young politicians to join the WEF in order to gain influence. Finland’s mainstream media have also not told that Klaus Schwab wants to microchip the brains of our people so that he can monitor, control and influence our mental movements.

No such microchip technology exists and the reason why Schwab tells such lies is because of his own esoteric and occult interests.

The 2022 Davos Meeting Discussed Taking Away People’s Cars and Forcing Them to Eat Bugs

Why doesn’t Helsingin Sanomat (Finland’s The Guardian) and Yleisradio (Finland’s BBC) report on Klaus Schwab’s irrational beliefs, but otherwise report comprehensively how climate change is being discussed at the World Economic Forum? In my opinion, this irrefutably proves that the mainstream media is tuned against us ordinary people. Last spring’s WEF meeting discussed how to take people’s cars away and how to force them to eat bugs. Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto (Green League) and Minister of Transport and Communications Timo Harakka (Social Democrat) represented the State of Finland at Davos.

The Mainstream Media is Against Us the People

Why has Helsingin Sanomat and Yleisradio been silent about Yuval Harari’s irresponsible and nonsensical talk of microchipping people with vaccinations, even though such microchips do not exist. They are just the wild wet-dreams of the esoteric occult sect, the transhumanists, rampant in the upper echelons of the World Economic Forum. Harari’s writings have recently been harshly criticized in Current Affairs in July this year with notably few if any follow-up stories. Harari’s ideas were described briefly as irresponsible scientific populism in the newspaper called Tekniikka ja Talous also in Finland.

We the people can get the evidence of the genuine WEF “secret” society of wacko Temple overlords easily with the click of a mouse and by googling. However, we are accused in mainstream media of being “conspiracy theorists” when we wonder about the weirdness of the WEF. In the summer, my brother and I bought t-shirts from the US, that read: “Give us new conspiracies, because the old ones have come true.” There is nothing secret in WEF’s “secret” alliance against us, the people than the fact that the mainstream western media wants to keep the WEF a secret from us ordinary people, which of course will never happen.

The WEF’s Cruel Human Experiment in Sri Lanka

I’m not surprised that hundreds of millions of people think the elite are planning something sinister for us and have thus refused Covid-19 vaccinations for “common sense” reasons. One also has to wonder that the strange WEF hype infects the mainstream media and the politicians in power.

A good friend of mine sent me a link to the 2016 Sri Lanka Economic Forum website. The economic forum in question was one of the regional forums of the World Economic Forum, where George Soros and other actors of the global economy planned the green inclusive sustainable development of Sri Lanka, which—as it turned out—was neither. The academic profile of the meeting was polished, e.g., by engaging Harvard University in the meeting and inviting climate change activist, money printing advocate and economic Nobel laureate Joseph E. Stiglitz to be the speaker. The inclusive vision of the meeting extended to 2023, when manna was supposed to rain from the sky in Sri Lanka and macroeconomic stability was supposed to prevail.

In 2019, newly elected Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa—whose political party is described as socially right-wing and economically left-wing—unveiled a grand “Green New Deal” and his vision for Sri Lanka. In many respects, it resembles the European Union’s Great Reset, i.e., the aforementioned community legislation enacted and still to be enacted, which the European Central Bank has supported by printing money. The Sri Lankan Disaster was ultimately caused by the policy directed through the UN and the WEF, which has aimed to steer countries towards meeting the UN’s Sustainable Development so-called SDG goals.

For several years, I have written essays and reports and given presentations in English about the destructiveness of these SDG policies, especially for the poorest countries, based on my work in the World Bank. Particularly destructive is the SDG6 policy, from which the letter H, for “hygiene,” has been dropped. Promoting hygiene, as was done in rich countries during the past century, made it possible to eradicate intergenerational under nutrition, which is a devastating public health problem in poor countries, and now affects 800 million people. Hygiene promotion does not suit those who believe in Malthusian ideas and nature pantheism, because it would require the extension of electricity and water supply to billions of poor people.

Sri Lanka’s Green Transition Reminiscent of the EU and US Green Transitions or Build Back Better Policies

The main cause of the massive disaster was the complete greening of Sri Lankan agriculture. At the beginning of March 2022, the catastrophic consequences of this greening were updated on the pages of Foreign Policy, i.e., four months before the final collapse. It appears from this article that in April 2021, Rajapaksa’s government implemented its green government program and banned the imports and use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides nationwide and ordered the country’s two million farmers to switch to organic farming. The program was called “a vision of splendor and prosperity,” just as now in the EU we are being sold the Fit for 55 Climate Package and the absurd regulations of the circular economy with the promise of an open and brilliant future.

After seven months of absurdity, Rajapaksa’s government had to back down on the green agricultural policy, but permanent damage had already been caused to food security and Sri Lanka had to buy expensive rice from the world market, which contributed to the macroeconomic crisis. At the end of last June, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) visited the country. During the visit, future reforms were agreed upon, with which the collapsed macroeconomic stability will be restored with a loan granted by the IMF.
Yuval Harari’s “Useless People”

The catastrophic events in Sri Lanka and the involvement of the WEF in creating this cruel human experiment have made many people wonder, what the ultimate goals of the world’s power elite really are? Now many commentators have drawn attention to the fact that Yuval Harari has spoken and written a lot about useless people. Conspiracy theorists and devout Christians in the US have had an unfriendly eye for a long time on the mysterious Georgia Guidestones, built in 1980, with writing in English, Spanish, Swahili, Hindi, Arabic, Mandarin Chinese and Russian, as well as Babylonian, classical Greek, Sanskrit and ancient Egyptian. These writings were meant for the people after the end of the world, which was labelled as the future Age of Reason. The stone was destroyed by blowing it up last July. Its first wisdom read:

“Maintain humanity under 500,000,000 in perpetual balance with nature.”

We the People Need to Wake Up—and Fast!

I don’t come from a religious family, but from a family that has supported social democrats for three generations. After a long and varied consideration, I made the decision to join the Finns Party, because in recent years the far left thinking has become anti-democratic and finally has become so repulsive that I resigned from Finland’s Social Democratic Party in January 2021, after having paying membership fees since 1977. I have a long career as a skeptical researcher. Science is not a faith but fundamentally based on doubts and questions. I have come to the conclusion that democracies and nation states are threatened with destruction—if the citizens do not wake up to protest the supremacy of these insane temple overlords. I’m sure that next winter’s trials resulting from decades of green energy policies and the revelation of the stupidity of the WEF’s idiots to an ever-wider group of people, even by force with the help of social media, will lead to an awakening.

We the people, ordinary workers and entrepreneurs who love their country and family, must wake up to defend enlightenment, freedom and modern society. Only the pursuit of the good, starting from one’s own starting points, can displace these human experiments conducted from abroad. Finland, as a society in its own right and as historically dominated by other nations, is now a solid platform for some kind of crazy experiments, unless our decision makers are aware of the enormous dangers associated with them.


Mikko Paunio, MD, MHS is Adjunct professor at the University of Helsinki, Department of Public Health. This article comes from a presentation in Finnish in Tampere (Mediapolis), given on October 1, 2022, iat a seminar called “Salattu valta” (“Occult power”) which was organized by Jäävuori (Iceberg). The title of the original presentation was, “WEF: nuoret johtajat ja Klaus Schwabin ohjailu” (“The Young Global Leaders and Klaus Schwab’s Steering”).

Who Did You Say was the Enemy?

First and foremost, the nation means sovereignty, for which its people will stand up and be counted.

Throughout History, France’s people have fought for her unity, independence, dignity, and for certain principles, legitimately upheld. That certainty rested upon an awareness that her destiny was interwoven between the government of the day, and the people. Never in her history had De Gaulle’s certaine idée de la France been cast overboard, even in the midst of frenzied partisan politics.

That interwoven sense of destiny is now frayed, given the citizenry’s current disregard for elections (I decline to entertain our politicians’ anecdotal excuses) and Frenchmen being notorious for their acute political conscience. In my view, rather than disinterest, what the no-show vote points to is distaste for the ruling class’ incompetence, along with a latent and intensifying hostility to the system, its policy and decisions. Add to the no-show vote those thronging the dissident, essentially right-wing, parties; and between the people and the ruling classes one sees a gulf looming.

A class of oligarchs, led by front-men of the Ecole nationale de l’Administration, has adopted lock-stock- and-barrel a web of foreign beliefs, spun through myriad societies and entities—all twanging away at that one, Unipolar, US string. A class whose collective brain is squatted upon by Anglo-American ideology, namely that a nation’s people are pawns in the game of international, US-run finance. That class has rushed to sign up for the EU and NATO, crony-clubs run out of Washington DC.

In the recondite mental-space that class inhabits, the citizen becomes a bleating consumer-sheep; national borders go up in puff of smoke—there will be no language heard but English, no armies formed save within NATO, no manufacture founded unless it feed US banks and interest-groups, no currency traded other than that of account, namely the US dollar (or some interim substitute), with the so-called Western World tugging its collective forelock before the Washington camarilla.

Amongst the phenomena attending this geopolitical nightmare—huge waves of immigration, designed to submerge protest in each nation; bring insecurity on every street to frighten the citizenry into submission; 24/7, wall-to-wall encouragement for the most abject, backward forms of behaviour; infantile methods of acculturation that void education of all content, vitiate Reason and free-will and erase Christianity as an approach to religious belief. The mass-media come amongst us not to inform but to indoctrinate, peddling disinformation and official untruths. History never happened, the family and decent mores went out with the horse-and-buggy… and so forth.

In a word, they wanted decadence, and they have got it in spades—the ruling class now in place has consciously chosen to dissolve France into some sort of barbarian magma, a vast seething sub-human cauldron, as Count Coudenhove-Kalergi, “Europe’s” éminence grise would have it. A magma to be push-me-pull-you’d by the US and its acolytes.

At the end of the day, mark my words, it is Man, and not France alone, in danger; Man in all his greatness as a thinking being. Should the nightmarish outlook described above prevail here and throughout Europe, it will take over the world, save for China and a few, doubtless Asian nations. Therefore, a French patriot who would defend his nation’s identity and the dignity of Man is a humanist, as I suggest in my latest book, Le patriotisme français est un humanisme (ED2A Publ.).

Throwing off the shackles of short-term thinking, allow me to recall a few amongst the more notorious US misdeeds with regard to France.
One’s first reaction is dismay, followed by dread, as one contemplates the authorities’ passivity before the advancing Hegemon. In theory, these leaders were elected to press France’s interests and her role in the world. I confess to mounting anger, as I observe our leaders complacently standing by, whilst the country falls prey to another, perfervidly nationalist state bent on conquest. Our leaders have allowed themselves to be dragged into hazardous adventures, solely to placate the xenophobia and hubris of Germany and the Anglo-Americans. Are these people collaborators? Is this treason?

No need to scroll too far back in history to find the US Hegemon lurking. From WWI on, when President Wilson caught up Theodore Roosevelt’s purported “peace” torch (thank Heavens for Clémenceau), the US resolve to rule the world has only stiffened. The end of the USSR was seen as a new and unlimited playing-field for the US, where limitless impertinence might prevail.

To illustrate: in 2010, Russia had ordered two Mistral class helicopter-carriers from France. With the ships already in the yards under construction, in 2014 the USA pressured President François Hollande to rescind the contract, on the specious pretext that the Crimea had been “annexed,” i.e., returned to the Russian fold, and that Russia was backing the threatened Russian majority in the Donbass area.
Another case in point: on 15th September 2021, Australia, at Washington’s instigation, unilaterally rescinded the contract for building 12 conventional submarines in France, then turned round and signed one with the USA and the UK for building nuclear submarines. A friendly attitude on the part of our allies, no doubt?

Or just very recently, the latest spot of intrigue cooked up by our German friends, in relation to the SCAF (Système de Combat Aérien Futur), originally a French programme with German and Spanish participation. All too readily, it became plain how keen were our German partners on technology transfer—and then we learnt they would be buying US F18s rather than the French Rafale. In a nutshell, to keep the EU on the straight and narrow, the USA’s key ally is Germany, which is why the USA holds no end of goodwill for Ursula von der Leyen (whose family, by the way, is more American than German).

By now, the French are quite alone in referring to the “Franco-German tandem,” one that Berlin has had shewn scant reluctance to crash. Put paid to the SCAF, put paid to the joint helicopter project (the Apache, rather than the Tigre), put paid to the joint patrol vessel; equip Europe’s armies with US materiel, obstruct French arms-exports—all stunts which the US has either incited underhandedly, or openly demanded. Not to speak of the attempt to destabilise French nuclear deterrence, by suggesting France share that, as well as her seat at the UN Security Council.

Pushing the boat ever-further out, Berlin now seeks to have qualified majority voting within the EU on security issues, rather than their remaining strictly a national matter. Should France consent, she will be dragged into wars willy-nilly, and watch her foreign policy and nuclear deterrence go down the drain.

The USA is behind these manoeuvres, which Germany will play along with as she intends to be its foremost partner. Matters have only got worse since France rejoined NATO in March 2009.

As for France enjoying an independent energy supply, the key is our nuclear reactors. But in order that US-German firms may invest and
dictate prices for most electrical energy sources, Germany has blithely helped sink EDF.

Lest we forget—the critical chunk of Alstom was sold to General Electric, thanks to the man who happens to be President of France. Alain Juillet testified thusly to the Parliamentary Defence Commission: “With this Alstom business, we’ve gone and sold to the USA the means to manufacture turbines for atomic submarines, which means that France can no longer build them without US permission.” That the USA preys on France’s high technology has become so glaringly obvious that the French government had to veto the Teledyne attempt to take over the defence optronics firm Photonis. Under pressure from public opinion, in 2019 an Act (loi Pacte) was adopted, to give the Economics Minister greater power to monitor foreign investment.

War is not the only area where US imperialism seeks to govern by its own rules. Set up by the Marrakesh Treaty en 1994, the WTO no longer suffices to serve that purpose, so extra-territoriality in law has become the latest Big Stick wielded by the USA.

Any foreign company trading worldwide may thus find itself on the receiving end of extra-territorial US laws, simply because somewhere, somehow, such firms necessarily have some kind of tie to the USA. The laws amount to a dictatorial system holding sway over players worldwide, no matter their country of origin. Competitors are weakened or crushed; over the past decade, billions of dollars in fines have come down upon French banks and firms, swelling the US Treasury, on the specious pretext that these firms had some tie to individuals or states which the USA considers “terrorist.”

As the USA controls liquidity flows, so can they mould minds. Whilst funds like Blackrock and Vanguard rule the economy, they also invest in the mass-media, 90% of which is held by 9 conglomerates, controlled in turn by the pension funds. Our screens are over-run with ghastly US films and videos—braying out from a cultural desert, let alone Halloween and English-language advertisements, trampling on an Act of Parliament (loi Toubon) meant to defend French.

There is method to all this madness: imposing a certain mindset, bringing all thought into line with Basic American, making an outcast of any non-conformist culture, and ensuring the US reign over Europe. The claim to manifest destiny, to self-evident intellectual superiority, was confirmed by the Monroe Doctrine and brandished by Zbignew Brzezinski, advisor to Presidents.

After WWII, the plot only thickens. On 28th May 1946, a France in dire straits had little option but to sign the Blum-Byrnes agreement, whereby she agreed to allow in, certain US products. One major French concession was that US films were no longer to be subject to quota, whilst France could henceforth reserve 4 weeks only out of 13 for French films. By the first semester of 1947, 340 US films had flooded in, with only 40 French shown! Thereafter, Hollywood would set about to retool the French mind, instill the American Way of Life and broadcast US propaganda.

When all is said and done—all is NOT said and done! I do not doubt but that France will overcome the onslaught of this erstwhile ally become a foe to nations and to civilisation tout court, a foe—pride cometh before a fall—who will most likely, and very shortly, taste defeat. By giving free rein to every manner of disorder, the USA has slammed the door on itself and turned away from the true Western world, whilst Russia, reborn, shews herself to be the leaven for renewal.

In the Ukraine, the ongoing conflict, eagerly sought by the USA, will doubtless prove the turning point. The USA, the EU and their NATO arm-bangle are likely heading straight for the wall, as the self-righteous obtusity of the USA beggars belief. Military academies in France (and I expect in the USA as well) teach us to coolly and objectively analyse an adversary top-down: weapons systems, environment, terrain, climate, men, officers whilst our initial operating orders take all these factors into account. One can only surmise that the USA’s overweening sense of superiority has so blinded its strategists, that it underestimates the adversary, having drawn no lessons from all the—lost—wars it has pursued since WWII. Leaving aside the fact that on no account can one truthfully say that the USA single-handedly won that War.

France has tangled herself into a conflict which in no way concerns her. There is no point in pretentiously waving the banner of liberty: the Ukrainian elite is utterly corrupt, the Ukrainians anything but unanimously hostile to their Russian brothers, whilst the territory is fast in the grip of British and American diplomatic and military power. President Macron has been sending the Ukraine equipment needed here by our own armed forces; he has led our country to lose huge investments in Russia, and our people to suffer on all fronts—economic, financial, energy. Meanwhile Francophone Africa looks to Moscow for safety, an outcome plainly due to France’s kowtowing to Washington. Should one care to analyse our waning influence and power in Africa, one will hear our African friends say things which should greatly disturb French leaders. No French patriot would have allowed such decadent, even perverse, influences to prevail in this country as they how do. Francophone Africa has taken note of our decadent state, and has decided to walk away—towards countries they recognise as dignified and respectable. Inevitably, the influence of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation will continue to grow.

A sovereign France has at hand tools of greatness, into which feed her intellectual, scientific and economic wealth: nuclear weapons and deterrence, the overseas territories of the world’s second largest sea-power, her friendship with Africa within the wider French-speaking world, her seat at the Security Council, and the world’s second largest diplomatic network.

Meanwhile, our “friends” loot our technological potential, strive to cut us out of our role at the UN and to subject our nuclear power to NATO. They hold our language and civilisation in contempt, and impose upon us a lifestyle that flatly contradicts morality and French customs; they block our access to resources and to our habitual partners. Through twisted geopolitical manoeuvres, aided and abetted by the French ruling class who ply every trick in the rhetorician’s trade to blame Someone Else, they have plunged us into a dreadful economic crisis. What does one call such people?

Doubt not, but that Russia will win the war in the Ukraine. This is not wishful thinking, but a statement based on observation of facts. I DARE say that this will redound to France’s advantage, by breaking the chains of NATO and the EU. Totalitarian in their aims, dancing to the US piper’s tune, these two international bodies have revealed to all and sundry how false and how extremely dangerous they are. For the USA, this will prove the latest in a string of defeats.

Were France not in the grasp of petty, impulsive and ill-informed mannikins, she could seize the great occasions bearing down upon us to rise to her former heights. Russia is not our enemy!


Henri Roure is a retired general in the French Marines, educated at the prestigious École spéciale militaire de Saint-Cyr (ESM), and the École Supérieure de Guerre. He holds a doctorate in Political Science and has authored numerous books, including, Le patriotisme français est un humanisme (French patriotism is humanism), Un Dieu, une terre et des hommes (One God, one land and people), and Sauvons notre laïcité: La crise musulmane en France (Save our secularism: The Muslim crisis in France). [This article was translated from the French by Mendelssohn Moses).


Featured: “La France protège le drapeau national contre l’antipatriotisme” (France protecting the flag from anti-patriotism), poster from 1909.

The Most Dangerous Man for the West

“The most dangerous man in the world”—this is how the Russian philosopher and geopolitician Alexander Dugin is referred to by his American counterparts. This alone is enough for a decent person to pay the closest attention to Dugin’s ideas.

Dugin is the undoubted enemy of the civilizing West, in all its manifestations, from the simple—the geopolitical project of Western global domination (globalization), through the negation of the Western ideological project (liberalism), to the high philosophical level of justification of dehumanization (object-oriented ontology). Dugin contrasts the first with a multipolar world, the second with the Fourth Political Theory, the third with Tradition.

Based solely on the Schmittian formula for the definition of the political—friend-enemy—it is not difficult to find one’s place in relation to Dugin: those who are for the West, globalization, and dehumanization (the transformation of man into a posthuman being, from a subject into an object) are against Dugin. The rest of us are “for him!”

You might ask, why, in fact, do we need to identify ourselves precisely with Dugin? Very simply. Because it was Dugin who created the theoretical foundation for all post-Soviet patriotic thought, grounding each point of this alternative to the West worldview matrix in the deepest way possible, having worked out each thesis in detail.

Everything you wanted to know from the realm of thought, but were afraid to ask, is in Dugin. Even if you are a liberal, a globalist, and a supporter of transhumanism, you need, if you are a serious thinker of course, to find an antithesis to each of your theses (to prove them, such is the law of scientific thought). No problem—Dugin has it all.

Even at the very beginning of the collapse of the Soviet bloc, when only liberalism (then called democracy) was offered as the sole alternative to Sovietism (at the suggestion of the West), Dugin developed and offered for public discussion the ideology of the Third Way, an independent ideological model of the new Russia, alternative to both Sovietism (with Marxism at its core) and the ideology of the West (with liberalism at its core).

Dugin contrasted the West’s assertion that there is no alternative to its model of development based on Modernism—with Tradition, the negation of which has been the foundation of Modernism with materialism, progressivism and positivism at its core for the last three centuries.

Dugin responded to the assertion that there was no alternative to the dominance of time with the thesis of the inviolability of Eternity. When people began to accuse him of proposing a Third Way as an alternative to the first (liberalism) and second (Marxism) ways, Dugin pointed out that it was then nothing more than fascism (the third political theory). Thus, Dugin pointed out that we are talking in general about going beyond the Modern; that is, about the Fourth Political Theory, which is based on Eternity, Tradition, God—everything that the Modern, with its liberalism, Marxism and fascism, has fully denied.
In response to the West’s assertion of the “objectivity” and “inevitability” of globalization (the thesis that all “advanced” members of the Russian political class have repeated like a spell since the early 1990s), Dugin proposed a multipolar world theory, based on an assertion of geopolitical pluralism.

In fact, geopolitics at that time, by Soviet inertia, remained “a pseudoscience justifying bourgeois imperialist expansion.” It was Dugin who took and translated all the fundamental works of the classics of geopolitics—from Mackinder and Mahan to Schmitt and Haushofer, and in between all the other major authors—and summarized all the basic criteria of geopolitical science in his Fundamentals of Geopolitics, written in 1995-1996 and published in early 1997. It was then that a whole galaxy of Russian geopoliticians appeared, rewriting Dugin’s textbook with varying degrees of diligence and zeal; while before that book, there was not a single one.

Dugin responded to the West’s proclamation of the project of European integration and the creation of the European Union by declaring a Eurasian Union, which he had previously worked out on an ideological level from as early as the late 1980s. It was Dugin’s neo-Eurasianism that first substantiated the need to position post-Soviet Russia as the basis for a special, non-Western and non-Eastern Eurasian civilization, Russia-Eurasia.

Dugin responded to the West’s assertion about the benchmark of its historical path of development and the universality of the model of Western society, a Western civilization proper, to which there is no alternative, with 23 volumes of Noomakhia, describing in a first approximation, the types of civilizations, their depth, metaphysical, cultural and geopolitical validity, as an alternative to the emasculated, primitive and superficial civilization of the collective West.

There is not a single statement by Western ideologues, thinkers, and philosophers to which Dugin and his intellectual group have not provided a similarly substantiated, conceptually elaborate, and profound response. It is no exaggeration to say that Dugin has it all!

When people ask me what I read, I half-jokingly (or maybe half-seriously) answer that “I only read Dugin.” Not literally, not because there is nothing else to read, but because before approaching any question, topic, concept, or philosophical idea, one must first look at what Dugin has written about it. This is only because Dugin has already read and comprehended all of this, and has presented it in a capacious, paradigmatic, and concentrated manner, in accessible language, drawing attention to the most important, while not emphasizing the secondary, and summarizing it in meaningful conclusions.

In order to be convinced of this, it is enough to conduct a little experiment, which I think I have already mentioned somewhere: just type in any meaningful combination of concepts, an intellectual formula, or a concept in combination with the name Alexander Dugin into any search engine, and you will get a selection of links to texts in which these ideas, models, or concepts have already been conceptualized, stated, and framed.

This is how Dugin’s ideas came to dominate the intellectual field not only in today’s Russia, but also in the thinking environment of the rest of the world, including the West, where the thinking part of society represents an alternative camp to the liberals, globalists and transhumanists. It was precisely because Dugin triumphed, took the intellectual upper hand, and forced everyone to think paradigmatically and holistically, that he worked through the entire sphere of the Ideas in all of their manifestations. He has already reversed the course of history, if we take the sphere of thought. But it takes time to be convinced of this firsthand, for the Idea descends from the sphere of the philosophical, where it is contemplated as an ideal image by the inner sight, through the sphere of the scientific, into the expert, and then into the media community, from where it becomes the property of the masses; and how long it will descend there depends not on the philosopher, but on the quality of the media in which the idea lives, develops (if it develops), and is conceptualized.

This unpredictability of the quality of environments affects the accuracy of predictions. As Dugin himself notes, a philosopher, giving a forecast, is never wrong about what will happen, but is almost always wrong about when it will happen. Maybe that’s because he is focused on Eternity, disregarding time.

Everything Dugin has written, said, elaborated on an intellectual level, is unfolding, coming true, incarnating before our eyes. You don’t have to be a profound philosopher yourself in order to open his books, articles and interviews, to read, listen to, comprehend and understand that everything, everything Dugin wrote and talked about in the 1990s and 2000s, has either already been realized or is being realized before our eyes, at this very moment. And what has not yet been realized is sure to come true. I cannot say when.

This is exactly why Dugin is, for example, “Putin’s advisor,” which the West and the rest of the world are convinced of. I have had to answer this question more than once everywhere—in Iran, in Turkey, in conversations with intellectuals in Latin America, Europe, Asia or Africa. Everywhere where thought matters, they are convinced that it is Dugin who determines the main vectors of Putin’s policy. Simply because everything Putin implements has previously been written or said by Dugin. What can I say to this? I don’t dare argue.

This is why we live in Dugin’s time. And this is why he is the most dangerous man for the West. If only because Dugin destroyed all the myths, so carefully and meticulously created in the West, about the standard of the Western way of historical development and the development of Western thought, about the universality of Western civilization, about the no-alternative to, and objectivity of, globalization, about the advantages of liberalism, about the objectivity of man. Everything, in fact, that the West needed to dominate the world, humanity, to be the ruler over all.

At the same time, no one in the West could demonstrate his intellectual superiority over Dugin (who was invited to hundreds of intellectual discussions with Western ideologists and philosophers), to demonstrate the primacy and validity of Western intellectual thought in an open dialogue—neither Brzezinski, nor Fukuyama, nor Bernard Henry Levy (deified by the contemporary Western intellectual community).

In an open intellectual confrontation with Dugin, they look pathetic and unconvincing. In plain English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Dugin leaves no stone unturned in Western liberal-globalist concepts, justifying his rightness at any level of discussion—from television broadcasts with one-second running time, to scientific audiences in hours-long debates.

This is where all the baseness and meanness of the West comes into play. Unable to defeat Dugin in an open debate, Western political technologists stoop to the level of meanness, dirty tricks, and petty sordidness. An entire section at the State Department has been working to discredit Dugin, ordering one discriminatory campaign after another for nearly a decade and a half. The array of political and technological methods used to smear Dugin does not lack originality or variety. What is the West most afraid of? Fascism (they have suffered from it there and created it themselves) and the occult (which is just scary in itself).
The next step is then easy—just identify Dugin with these two terrible phenomena. Fortunately (for them), the same method works here—type “fascism” and “occultism” into a search engine and—voila. Dugin has studied and described all of Western thought—from the Presocratics and Plato and Aristotle, through the fall into Scholasticism and Cartesianism, to New Age, Modern and Postmodern.

Naturally, this includes the twentieth century period, including such European phenomena as Fascism, National Socialism with its racial theory, occultism, and so on. By the same logic, you can accuse someone who writes about insects of being an insect. This is exactly how they operate—if Dugin wrote about fascism, then he is a fascist; and if he wrote about the occult, then he is an “occult fascist.”

In order to discredit Dugin, American political technologists hire a contractor, local subcontractors, and all kinds of State Department sub-suckers who for small pay endlessly have cutting & pasting unreadable hodge-podge for ten years, endlessly combining the words “Dugin,” “fascism” and “occultism” with all their derivatives. The results are very silly; but they are many; and it is then easy to refer to one another endlessly, portraying the “scientificity,” “thoroughness” and “validity” of each other’s libels. The calculation is the same—if you type “Alexander Dugin” into a search engine, with such an abundance of ordered filth, something containing “fascist” and “occultist” is sure to pop up, and the ordinary reader does not even follow the links, being satisfied with the headlines.

All of this, according to the Western clientele, was supposed to make Dugin “toxic,” as young people now say it, in order to even theoretically rule out a synthesis between the main politician of today’s world, Vladimir Putin, and the main intellectual. In a sense, as it turned out, they did achieve this. However, Dugin himself, with the dignity of a philosopher whose eyes are turned inward, contemplating an ideal image of thought, continued to remain silent on the matter, while Putin continued to implement the strategies described by Dugin, also ignoring the stink and untidy machinations of Western “partners.”

Desperate to change any one thing at all, the Western perpetrators decided on the nastiest meanness of all—murder. However, the prince of this world has someone to confront him. Russia has entered the final eschatological battle for the end of history. God and the devil came together in the final battle, and the field of battle, as Dugin himself says—the human soul, as well as the human mind. The wars of the mind. Noomachy. Dugin’s time. Endkampf.


Valery Korovin is a journalist and sociologist. This article appears courtesy of Zavtra.ru.

How the West Brought War to Ukraine

We are so very pleased to bring you an excerpt from a very crucial book, How the West Brought War to Ukraine, by Benjamin Abelow. To orient readers, we begin by quoting the one-paragraph blurb from the back cover:

According to the Western narrative, Vladimir Putin is an insatiable, Hitler-like expansionist who invaded Ukraine as an unprovoked land grab. That story is incorrect. In reality, the United States and NATO bear significant responsibility for the Ukraine crisis. Through a series of misguided policies, Washington and its European allies placed Russia in an untenable situation for which war seemed, to Mr. Putin and his military staff, the only workable solution. This book lays out the relevant history and explains how the West needlessly created conflict and now labors under an existential threat of its own making.

The book is endorsed by many experts. For example, in the words John J. Mearsheimer: “For anyone interested in understanding the true causes of the disaster in Ukraine, How the West Brought War to Ukraine is required reading.”

Please support the valuable work of Benjamin Abelow and purchase a copy of this book, and spread the word. What follows, copied by permission, is the entire Chapter Seven from this short and readable eight-chapter book.

[Read our review]

How Overly Pessimistic Narratives Become Self-Fulfilling Prophecies

The story of an evil, irrational, intrinsically expansionist Russia with a paranoid leader at its helm, opposed by a virtuous United States and Europe, is a confused and strange confabulation, inconsistent with a whole series of directionally aligned events during the past 30 years—events whose significance and meaning should have been readily apparent. In fact, the predominant Western narrative might itself be viewed as a kind of paranoia.

The provocations that the United State and its allies have directed at Russia are policy blunders so serious that, had the situation been reversed, U.S. leaders would long ago have risked nuclear war with Russia. For U.S. leaders to assert otherwise, as they now are doing, represents a dangerous disregard of reality. In some cases, this disregard surely represents willful demagoguery. But for some policy makers it must be well intentioned, occurring for the simple reason that they continue to interpret new facts in light of the same spent narrative.

Major press outlets also bear responsibility. Rather than seeking to contextualize events properly for their readers, the media have trumpeted the government’s preferred narrative. Whatever its motivations, the mainstream media have implemented, and continue to implement, a regime of propaganda that misinforms the public and can only be perceived by Russia as an affront to the national character of its people. Online providers of information are doing much the same. In fact, as the Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and First Amendment lawyer Glenn Greenwald has shown, massive censorship of dissenting views is now occurring at many levels of society in both the United States and Europe.

Although it is difficult to look at the horrific images coming out of Ukraine without revulsion and anger, succumbing to blind emotion and embracing the dominant Western narrative is a dangerous error. It empowers the worst forces in Washington, including the nexus of bureaucratic power and commercial interest that President Eisenhower, a fivestar Army general, termed the military-industrial complex, about which he warned the American public in his final televised address as U.S. president. This narrative also enables the most Russophobic and militaristic of European leaders, as well as those with the least guts to stand up to misguided American policies. The narrative clouds the minds of American and European citizens, leading to jingoism and war-mongering.

My primary goal in this book is to correct a false narrative, and for a very practical reason: because false narratives lead to bad outcomes. Narratives are inevitably reflected in behaviors; they are both descriptive and generative. By functioning as models of reality, narratives serve as guides for action. Then, through the dynamic of action and reaction, push and pushback, they can produce the results they allege are already present. In this way, a narrative that is overly pessimistic about the intentions of a potential opponent—what I term a “narrative of suspicion”—can potentiate the very threats it purports to mitigate.

This description underlies the classic dynamic of an arms race that culminates in escalation and war. It instantiates not the paradigm of World War II, with its associated images of implacable expansionism and Western appeasement, but of World War I, in which Germany, Britain, Western Europe, and ultimately America sleep-walked into catastrophe. Yet now, because of the nature of nuclear weaponry, catastrophe can happen more easily, and with more devastating effect.

As with World War I, each side, fearing the worst from the other, seeks to make itself invulnerable through a military strategy that necessarily also has offensive potential—a double-edged strategic sword that policy analysts term a “security dilemma.” This is precisely what George Kennan predicted with respect to NATO expansion, and in respect to which he has proven correct. That expansion, which was justified in the name of defense, has been perceived by Russia as an offensive threat and led to actions that are, in turn, perceived by the West as expansionist. In 2014, Richard Sakwa offered a pithy retrospect on the situation that Kennan had anticipated:

In the end, NATO’s existence became justified by the need to manage the security threats provoked by its enlargement. The former Warsaw Pact and Baltic states joined NATO to enhance their security, but the very act of doing so created a security dilemma for Russia that undermined the security of all.

And since Sakwa wrote, the situation has only gotten worse, in good measure because the United States and its allies have carried out a parallel set of military expansions outside of NATO.

Mr. Putin, whatever authoritarian tendencies he might possess, was not born on a set path. In the current zeitgeist, it may be considered heretical to state the obvious: that Mr. Putin, like all human beings, is influenced by a combination of what is within—his psychology, beliefs, and values—and what is without, the dynamic external circumstances that confront him. This is simply a truism. It is likewise a truism that chronic exposure to certain patterns of external events can change a person’s inner tendencies, or, at least, selectively magnify some tendencies at the expense of other,
sometimes opposite tendencies.

Incrementally, in steps small and large, the West has disregarded Russia’s reasonable security concerns, considering them irrelevant, stoking Russian concerns about encirclement and invasion. At the same time, the United States and its European allies have implied that a rational actor would be assuaged by the West’s statements of benign intention: that the weapons, training, and interoperability exercises, no matter how provocative, powerful, or close to Russia’s borders, are purely defensive and not to be feared. In many instances, Western leaders, especially from the United States, have actively disrespected Mr. Putin, sometimes insulting him to his face.

In doing all this, the West has suggested that Mr. Putin is imagining strategic threats where none in fact exist. This Western framing—which posits a lack of legitimate Russian security concerns coupled with implied and explicit accusations of irrationality—underlies much of the currently dominant narrative. It also underlies the ideological position of the Russia hawks who play such a prominent role in Washington. In personal relationships, the combination of threatening actions and accusations of paranoia would be considered gaslighting. Is the situation really so different in the realm of international politics?

During times of war and military threat, even the leaders of free countries lean toward authoritarianism. Sensing great danger, they may tighten the reins of power, imposing top-down control and expanding the categories of domestic action and speech that are considered treasonous. It is not extreme to suggest that the provocations described in this book created in the mind of Mr. Putin and other members of the Russian political and military class an evolving sense of siege and emergency. My point is that one must contemplate the possibility that Western actions contributed not only to Russia’s foreign policies, but to untoward aspects of Russia’s domestic politics as well. In fact, George Kennan predicted this in 1998. NATO expansion, he said, would “have an adverse effect on the development of Russian democracy.”

Political actors, both individuals and corporate actors, such as bureaucracies and nations, are not static entities. Rather, the human decisions we call “policies” emerge from a concatenation of conscious intentions; unconscious motivations; accidents of history; and personal, human interactions, including blatantly threatening, humiliating, and disrespectful interactions and words, such as those that have emanated from the mouth of President Biden. And it is quite possible that the actions of the United States and its European allies exerted, and continue to exert, a more profound effect on the policies of Mr. Putin, including his domestic policies, than some are inclined to think.


And Here We Are…

A little more than half a century ago, in 1956, the German Jewish philosopher Günther Anders published a book with a prophetic title, Die Antiquiertheit des Menschen (The Outdatedness of Human Beings). He is credited with a quotation, the history of which can be found at this link. The quotation can be considered as belonging to three authors: Anders, Huxley and Serge Carfantan, who gave it its final form. Whatever the ultimate source of this quotation, I have taken the liberty of commenting on it:

“In order to stifle any revolt in advance, one must not use violence. Methods like those used by Hitler are outdated. You need only develop such powerful collective conditioning that the very idea of revolt will not even cross people’s minds. Ideally, individuals should be conditioned by limiting their innate biological abilities from birth…”

This is done already. And even gone way beyond. A whole generation is being trapped in a totally chimerical identity problem, by making them believe that freedom consists in choosing not only so-called sexual identity, but also the sexual body in which they want to grow up.

“Then, we would continue the conditioning process by drastically reducing education in order to bring it back to a form of integration into the world of work. An uneducated individual has only a limited horizon of thought, and the more his thoughts are confined to mediocre concerns, the less he can rebel.”

For half a century, we have been working in France to impose pedagogical methods that have shown their inefficiency, with the complicity of teachers whose ideological marking to the left made them particularly favorable to these new tendencies. The Anglo-Saxon model of a narrow-minded pragmatism, strictly oriented towards adaptation and relational conformism, was imposed in secondary and higher education.

“Access to knowledge must be made increasingly difficult and elitist. The gulf between people and science must be widened. All subversive content must be removed from information intended for the general public. Above all, there should be no philosophy. Here again, we must use persuasion and not direct violence: we will massively broadcast entertainment via television that always extols the virtues of the emotional and instinctive.”

Access to knowledge means—good books, annotated bibliographies, teachers capable of introducing difficult works, of situating them, of commenting on them and of making them accessible. Above all, no philosophy; and where it is still taught, it is only an exegesis deficient in intelligence of abstruse texts that high school students do not have the sufficient level of language to understand them, even literally. By forbidding a large number of teenagers to master the language, a necessary but not sufficient condition for thinking, we block their access to written culture. At the same time, we discredited the field of study that constituted the visibility of these typical skills of the exercise of thought (literature, philosophy, history) until we were able to liquidate purely and simply this “literary” field of study, a moment that we will call the “Blanquer moment.”

“We will fill people’s minds with what is futile and fun. It is good to prevent the mind from thinking through incessant music and chatter.”

In buses, on the station platforms, wherever you have to wait, except at the post office, you have to put up with unbearable musical threads dominated by Anglo-Saxon songs and all kinds of noise whose mixed qualities are praised.

“Sexuality will be placed at the forefront of human interests. As a social tranquilliser, there is nothing better.”

It is indeed everywhere, omnipresent. You are harassed if you are not sexually active—chastity and continence have become unintelligible. Even at the age when one can hope that one’s senses will be appeased and one can take care of one’s grandchildren, one’s garden, and others, one is harassed on the question of sexual activity. And this age, which traditional societies respect and venerate because it is emblematic of the wisdom acquired by and through an entire existence, is dishonored by a whole perverse, perverted and perverting press.

BFMTV is the brilliant daily tribute to the stupidity divinity. Let’s add Koh-Lanta and all the programs intended to show in the most indecent and vulgar way the problems of all kinds of poor people who make fools of themselves without being aware of it.

“In general, we will make sure to banish seriousness from life, to deride anything that is highly valued and to constantly champion frivolity: so that the euphoria of advertising becomes the standard of human happiness and the model for freedom.”

For twenty years, a whole generation was fed by the “Guignols de l’info,” which made fun of life and politicians, until that historic moment when the parody of François Hollande as president, by the comedian Canteloup, seemed more real than the real man himself. That he amply deserved to be mocked in this way, there can be no doubt. But it is appropriate to recall Blaise Pascal’s text on the two greatnesses. We would be entitled to despise Hollande as well as Macron in their totally corrupted persons. But we are bound to respect the function they represent, or have represented, even if they have, each in his own style, dishonored it, thus dishonoring the country, the nation and the people who elected them. As for the press, it has signed on to it for years and still shows its in-culture, and shows the god it worships: the divinity Stupidity.

“Conditioning alone will thus produce such integration that the only fear – which must be maintained – will be that of being excluded from the system and therefore no longer able to access the conditions necessary for happiness. The mass man produced in this way must be treated as what he is: a calf, and he must be kept a close eye on, as a herd should be. Anything that allays his lucidity is good socially, and anything that could awaken it must be ridiculed, stifled and fought.”

And so here we are. And we seem to be getting to the point where those who do not share the prevailing rhetoric may be excluded from the health care system. This mass man is now being closely monitored. Everything is set up, including the feedback questionnaires sent by the “high authorities of the hospital,” supposedly to contribute to the improvement of the structures. Who do they think they are fooling?

“Any doctrine questioning the system must first be designated as subversive and terrorist, and those who support it must then be treated as such.”

This is how a young woman with the significant first name of Cassandra was heavily penalized for carrying a sign with the word “WHO” written on it during a demonstration. This is how the leaders of the Yellow Vests were heavily punished. Meanwhile, the real terrorists preach holy war in our prisons or settle comfortably in our psychiatric asylums, financed by the taxpayers.

Yes, here we are…

Programmed obsolescence is not only in the machines that turn the planet into a huge landfill; it is now programmed for humans. This is what we call the Great Reset, with the complicity of the masses, which were once called peoples and nations.

Some doubt this and Pope Francis seems to find it all very convenient. It is time he opened his eyes. It is urgent, because it is also the Church that is going to be reprogrammed with built-in obsolescence…

So, of course, in Canada, an endless line of truckers drove towards Ottawa to protest against the odious measures of Justin Trudeau’s government. They were obviously defending their particular interests. Let’s not dream, the ideal of freedom was probably not their primary motivation. But it was a start.

The organized division of society, with a view to controlling and squeezing it, could well one day turn against those who have destroyed the glue French society—a certain shared idea of France, of its political, religious, literary and even loving history, a certain confidence in its institutions.

Justice is the glue of peace. It is rooted in a Law, the divine Law scorned in the most ignoble way, in all the domains of life—family, marriage, children, education, history, respect of politics.

It is also a law of history—when a society becomes too radically evil, it is wiped off the face of the earth. The new European empire will know the fate of all empires: it will collapse and go to fill a chapter in the history of the world, in what will remain of our textbooks, or in rewritten history books.


Marion Duvauchel is a historian of religions and holds a PhD in philosophy. She has published widely, and has taught in various places, including France, Morocco, Qatar, and Cambodia.


Featured image: “Justitia,” by Carl Spitzweg, painted in 1857.

Come, Light

Something extraordinary happened one morning in December 2020.

When he got up the night was still lingering in the sky. London plane trees, so doleful in the rain, were still dripping. The ground below was piled thick with soggy leaves, and a dull foreboding hung in the air.

Shards of streetlights shone on the wet asphalt. It looked as though the rain was about to end.

The day before Christmas in London in the year of the pandemic, Shifa thought to himself. The year of sorrow and dejection. The preceding few days things had gotten even gloomier. Every now and then an ambulance would dart through the deserted streets with sirens wailing. Hospitals were over-stretched, the news said, and the city cemeteries were just about full.

He had been reading Daniel Defoe’s account of the bubonic plague that scourged the city in 1665. About cartloads of dead being dumped into mass graves and about some, still alive, screaming and clawing out of the shallow pits. A brutal record of the fright, the deaths, the stench, the greed, and of the evil lurking in men as the pestilence ravaged the city.

A gnawing awareness of a similar agony—of having seen the horror and of a solemnity of being still alive—rippled through’s Shifa’s mind. The old plague lay mingled with the spectre of the present.

The weather too had been miserable. For weeks torrents of rain whipped up by gusty winds had been blighting the country, causing severe flooding in places. The lockdown had made everyone forget that a year consisted of four seasons. That there were nights and days of varying lengths and temperatures. That the once familiar outdoor still displayed facets of beauty and changing vistas.

Sickness, convalescence, separation across continents. Misery had struck his family too as it had so many others. There would be no Christmas celebration this year.

It was Thursday, the day of luminous mysteries. Shifa took out his rosary and sat down facing the charcoal sky. Slowly his eyelids closed.

By the time he finished the third decade Shifa had sunk into a rhythm of repetition. Praying the rosary for him sometimes turned into an unconscious and vague ritual. This morning, however, he was curiously alert as he came to the fourth decade. The mystery of the transfiguration. With blinkered eyes he tried to imagine how the illumined face of the teacher might have looked like to the apostles assembled on the bald mountain that night.

It was then that he was shaken by the irony. To meditate on a body made up of blood, flesh, and bones transforming itself into light—on a day like this? How could one contemplate light when the earth was awash in blinding darkness?

With eyes shut he whispered all this to himself. Drowned earth. Denuded trees, barren gardens, empty streets. Overhead a pouring sky. Wake up. Shed off your stupor.

Fingers still clasping the beads Shifa opened his eyes, and an unearthly beauty greeted him. The sun had pierced through the clouds, and a pale golden hue lay diffuse in the glistening air. Bewitched, he watched a curtain of liquid, diaphanous gold silently settling on grey, red, and beige buildings.

The leafless skeleton of the majestic tree of paradise across the window stood sheathed in a preternatural luster.

This was transfiguration, it occurred to him. Light had entered the darkness, gently spreading its silken luminosity. As it increased in brightness, the glow turned the earth itself into its glory. It appeared as though the world was being consecrated by an act of benediction promising the return of hope to a saddened world.

Ezekiel had once encountered the glory of God. “As the appearance of the rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day,” said the prophet, “so was the appearance of the surrounding radiance.” And he continued, “Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. And when I saw it, I fell on my face.” (Ezekiel 1:28).

What a mystery light is!

“It is a universal, firmly-held opinion, the very voice of nature,” wrote Marsilio Ficino in 1493, “that nothing is more beautiful to behold, nothing more lovable, nothing more astonishing than light.”

Scientists say about 80% of our experiences are visual. The eye’s response to light constitutes our external reality and thus determines our interactions with the world. Yet “What is light?” never elicits a simple answer, writes Glenn Stark in the Encyclopedia Britannica, because light is “experienced, explored, and exploited” in so many contexts that its literal meaning is inextricable from the metaphorical.

The English language is especially rich with its nuances. The sun lets us see the world and helps us know it. The mind enlightens us with understanding. Visions and inspiration help us gain insight.

Even a scientist, while observing light’s nature (its impacts and interactions with objects), must walk a tightrope between the opposite properties of light: particles and waves. Others – theologians, poets, philosophers – often imagine light in paradoxes.

In art, two painters rarely approach it from similar angles, even though what they paint mostly is light. Renaissance master Vincenzo Catena (“Saint Jerome in his study”) painted it coming directly from its source, the sun, illuminating the world as it did the saint in his study. For both the saint and the painter, the direct trajectory of light, increasing in brightness until it attained the perfect brilliance and clarity, emanated from God, its true origin. For George Seurat, on the other hand, the interplay of tiny contrasting strokes of colours (or particles) nearly invisible to the naked eye, made up the lustrous domain of light that enwrapped objects and things. The source of light for him was in the environs.

So, what is light?

The illumination we encounter as visible light is the effect on our environment of the sun’s radiation, or electromagnetic spectrum, as science calls it. This spectrum is made up of waves of energy the star dissipates over the universe continuously. On one end of the spectrum pulsate immensely destructive gamma rays with less than an atom of space between waves; on the other undulate radio waves that have thousands of miles of distance between crests.

All this radiation is hostile to life. Yet somewhere near the middle of its length is a tiny portion (less than 1%) of the spectrum that becomes supremely benign.

It is bizarre why this minuscule segment of deadly radiation should soften itself, but it does. As it enters the earth’s atmosphere the electromagnetic spectrum attains the wavelength of the extremely narrow range of 0.3 to 14 microns (a micron is a millionth of a meter). This range, writes author and scientist James Le Fanu in “Here comes the all-powerful sun,” is so narrow within the entire spectrum that, by analogy, it takes up just “a few seconds” in a timespan 100 million times longer than the 4.6 billion years since the Big Bang, or the beginning of our solar system.

As our planet wakes up to greet the sun in the morning, an incredibly small amount of radiation is extracted, as if by some invisible hands, from the massive body of deadly destruction and turned gently into life-generating munificence.

Michelangelo’s “Separation of Light from Darkness” in the Sistine Chapel celebrates this drama as narrated in Genesis 1:2-3. We see a colossal God separating swirling white gases from surrounding darkness with his enormous, sinewy hands, thus initiating creation. It brings to memory Isaiah’s words: it is God who “forms the light and creates darkness” (45:7).

From this moment on, a new story more breathtaking than an Arabian tale begins to take shape.

During those few seconds that it touches the sleepy earth, the radiation turns itself into visible light and its companion heat, setting off the cycle of life. Working in tandem with the earth’s orbit, its daily turning on the axis, and the planet’s tilt towards the sun, light creates a unique orchestra by arranging time’s endless permutations of varying lengths of night and day.

Fecundity follows. Light translates time into seasons of tilling, growing, and harvesting. Into seasons of courtship, nesting, and raising fledglings. Light makes life possible and ensures that the mystery continues. For the sake of the princess Scheherazade and the king inside the palace as well as for the ladybug in the garden.

The farmer casts the seed in the ground, the gospel tells us, but “knows not how the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear.” (Mark 4:28). It is the benevolent hand of light that waves the magic wand.

The spectacle carries on. The beam that descends on treetops, mountain peaks, oceans and rivers also lights up fireworks in our brains. Electrical nerve impulses generated by the reflected light tell our brains how to detect objects, colours, shapes, dimensions, and textures. We acknowledge, differentiate, classify, and interpret images by comparing them with old images stored in our memories.

As the light creates sparkles and ripples on a stream or paints the wings of a butterfly it is only the human eye that can capture this panorama. Through the lenses of our eyes, only we can witness the rainbow of the seven hues.

There is more.

Light keeps time and measures distance in the universe. Whether fathoming the vastness of space or reading the faces of our digital devices, we return to light to get our bearing. Scientists measure the distance of galaxies, from us and among themselves, by the speed of light. And when an object acquires the speed of light, they say, it becomes infinite.

There is an instructive episode in the Venerable Bede’s history of English kings and churches.

A courtier in the Anglo-Saxon king Edwin’s castle compares the life of a man to the swift flight of a sparrow through the king’s banquet hall on a winter night. The king sits at supper with friends and family while the fire blazes and the storms rage abroad. The sparrow flies in at one door and immediately out at another. While the bird is within the warm hall, he is safe from the wintry tempest, but then he vanishes out of everybody’s sight, passing from winter to winter again.

“Such is the life of man,” says the courtier to the king, “appearing for a little while in the well-lit and warm banquet hall, but what follows or what went before we know nothing at all.”

Like Bede’s sparrow flitting through the warm hall on a wintry night, light, traveling at a speed of 300,000 km a second takes a little over eight minutes to traverse ninety-two million miles before reaching the earth, the banquet hall of life.

Unlike the sparrow, however, this radiant visitor quickens life, clothes nature, replenishes granaries and then leaves everything behind. Back into the vast endlessness. Whence it comes we know but where it goes in the end, we do not.

The first act of God narrated in the Bible was the creation of light. “Let there be light’ said God, ‘and there was light” (Genesis 1:3).

This light, created “when the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while the Spirit of God swept over the face of the waters” (Genesis 1:2), became the icon of divinity in human imagination. This surreal picture of the beginning has been the enduring anchor for our physical and moral understanding of the world as well as of our relationships with it.

Following the gospels, apostolic narratives and patristic traditions, Christian theology has from its inception understood the transfiguration of Jesus to be the revelation of the glory of God. The accounts appearing in Matthew, Mark and Luke are remarkable: “There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light.” “There he was transfigured before them. His clothes became dazzling white, whiter than anyone in the world could bleach them,” and “As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning.” Later, Peter spoke of having been an eyewitness of Christ’s “magnificence” (2 Peter 1: 16-18). In his gospel as well as in the first epistle, John described God as light.

The significance of these accounts lies primarily in the transcendental impact of light. The apostles do not merely refer to their visual susceptibility; they allude to the event’s transformative impact. St Paul articulates this transformation most eloquently in his letter to the Ephesians: “But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light” (5:13).

One of the earliest Church fathers, Saint Irenaeus, also described the transfiguration by establishing a correspondence between the glory of God, the vision of God and the life of man. “[T]he glory of God is a live human being, and a truly human life is the vision of God.”

Light perceived in this way can lead to a sea-change in the heart of a man. It may rekindle a novel awareness of God; it may even lead to an experience comparable to Saul’s on the road to Damascus. After all, he was blinded by intense light.

Life transcendent. Is that not what transfiguration is? What else can turn an inert possibility into a living luminescence, if not light?


Pius Manutius is a husband, father, and traveler.


Featured image , “The Penitent Magdalen,” by Georges de La Tour, painted ca. 1640.

Ever More Fractures

Without being pessimistic, we all feel that we are living in a new and difficult period, with serious threats on the horizon that create a climate of uncertainty and anxiety. And if the health crisis contributes to this climate, it is neither the origin nor the main reason. Rather, it seems to me, this reason is rather to be sought in the worrying fact that everywhere divisions increase, fractures grow; to the point that what constitutes the nation, a community welded by a history, a religion, a culture and values—fruit of a long civilization—is bursting apart under the blows of an individualism which managed to erase the very notion of the good (so that each one must be free to determine “his” good) and thus necessarily of the common good.

Four Major Fractures

Without being exhaustive, I would cite four major fractures to illustrate my point, all of which contribute in one way or another to the atmosphere of existential insecurity that is developing.

1. The social fractures that draw two very unequal France: The one that benefits from globalization—the “France of the top” or the Anywhere which shamelessly sells off the sovereignty of the nation; and the one that suffers from it—the “peripheral France” or the Somewhere, which has formed the large battalions of the Yellow Vests, and bolsters one part of the “anti-vaccine passport” movement.

2. The anthropological fractures that have proliferated ever since the modern philosophies of deconstruction ousted the classical vision of man as a created being endowed with a nature of his own that cannot be denied or violated without serious damage, with a clear limit set by natural law. The first step was the separation between fertility and sexuality, brought about by the pill, which contributed to putting all forms of sexuality on the same level and allowed, afterwards, to think of fertility outside sexuality. In this deadly logic, after having trivialized abortion, we have come to legitimize “marriage” between people of the same sex, then to deny sexual difference and to allow the manufacture of children as simple products, and this is far from over.

3. The demographic divide, resulting from a drop in the birth rate, in France as in all Western countries, compensated in the early 1970s by labor immigration, which quickly turned into a massive immigration that was never controlled, bringing in large Muslim minorities and a number of insurmountable problems of assimilation, education, social distress, delinquency, etc. Islam has thus formed expanding communitarian zones—the “lost territories of the Republic”—where French law no longer penetrates.

4. The ecological divide: Not a week goes by without the announcement of “climate chaos,” as if the coming “catastrophe” were real. That there is an ecological emergency is obvious. But is it by infantilizing the population, by playing on fear with binary and guilt-inducing speeches that we are really going to move things forward?

Division Everywhere

Oppositions and divisions have always existed and are even consubstantial to the functioning of a democracy. In the past, during the “Cold War,” these were not small when they concerned the “choice of society” between a Marxist left-leaning towards the Soviet Union and a liberal right close to the United States. However, the differences remained mainly confined to political aspects. Today, they have invaded all areas. There is nothing that cannot be contested and questioned: Everything has become a reason for quarrelling; almost nothing is stable and acquired anymore. There is no longer a common basis for a peaceful life in society. History, religion, culture, the principles that forged our Christian civilization and more particularly the nation of France with its vision of man, all this is questioned, rejected or dismissed (by “wokism,” for example), remnants of an obscurantist past that must be quickly forgotten.

From such a basis, divisions and fractures are inevitable and are bound to multiply. The logical outcome of such an evolution is either civil war or the establishment of a directive regime determined to impose its views by marginalizing or silencing the recalcitrant.

Is this not the path we are already on? Denouncing abortion or “marriage for all,” crucial “societal” subjects that should be at the heart of the debate of ideas, is more and more akin to the crime of opinion, as we saw in August with the showing of the film Unplanned. It is the same for all the “advances” that methodically deconstruct man. Thus, the field of freedom of expression is gradually being restricted as society disintegrates, a harbinger of a disturbing evolution.

In this serious context, Christians have a primordial role to play, certainly made difficult by the deep dechristianization and their own divisions, but facilitated by the supernatural hope that they carry within them.


Christophe Geffroy publishes the journal La Nef, through whose kind assistance we are publishing this article.


The featured image shows an oil on panel portrait by Nadine Callebaut.

Long Live the Dead!

The dead, like old coins, are the currency that are out of circulation. Cemeteries, the places where graves enshrine their bones, are the sack of Hades. By the rules of nature inscribed in biology, the dead are replaced by new generations which, one day, will themselves be replaced by a new series, minted by future generations.

This biological rule was applied to the life of human societies by Edmund Burke who, in his Reflections on the Revolution in France, defined society as a contract between the dead, the living and the unborn – “a clause in the great primaeval contract of eternal society, linking the lower with the higher natures, connecting the visible and the invisible world, according to a fixed compact sanctioned by the inviolable oath which holds all physical and all moral natures.” By saying that the goal of historical writing is to preserve great human deeds from falling into oblivion, the Greek historian Thucydides gave us another insight – memory is the glue with which the past and future are held together. T.S. Eliot was not far from Burke when he wrote:

Time present and time past
Are both perhaps present in time future,
And time future contained in time past.
If all time is eternally present
All time is unredeemable.
What might have been is an abstraction
Remaining a perpetual possibility
Only in a world of speculation.
What might have been and what has been
Point to one end, which is always present.
Footfalls echo in the memory
Down the passage which we did not take
Towards the door we never opened
Into the rose-garden. My words echo
Thus, in your mind.
But to what purpose
Disturbing the dust on a bowl of rose-leaves
I do not know.
Other echoes
Inhabit the garden. Shall we follow?
Hans (Jan) Collaert, Christ and the Robbers, ca. 1570.

To conservatives, the dead are very much alive. Conservatives carry the memory of the dead and their achievements. It is a memory filled with words and ideas of writers, poets, thinkers; with images created by sculptors and painters; and with sounds from composers of music. The words and ideas of the dead are never rendered obsolete or superseded. To the conservative, they resound in the present with the same vitality they had when they were first uttered decades or centuries ago. Homer, Sappho, Plato, Aristotle, Thucydides, Virgil, Dante, and others are as much our contemporaries as they were the contemporaries of those who knew them personally.

Burial sites are a great proof of this; and what they look like is also a reflection of who we were and are. The Pere Lachaise and Montmartre cemeteries in Paris are probably the most famous necropoleis of the Western world. But first and foremost, they are monuments of France’s national history and French greatness. You find there many famous French cultural figures you’ve heard of, or have studied in school. Alfred de Musset, Balzac, Molière, Racine, Abelard and Héloise, several of Napoleon’s marshals, or foreigners, such as Oscar Wilde and Chopin. (On November 1st, lovers of Chopin’s music place a boombox on his grave which plays his compositions.) And, of course, Jim Morrison!

It may sound strange that Italians, who outnumber all Western nations in artistic genius, do not have a cemetery like Pere Lachaise. The reason is of historical – the lack of a central government (which came about only in 19th century with the unification by Garibaldi), and the fact that no single Italian city came to fully dominate others, like Paris did in France – which explains why the bones of famous Italians are scattered all over the country, with several in the Church of Santa Croce and in the cloister in Florence. Dante is in Ravenna. Rafael and the late 17th-century music composer Corelli are in Rome, in the Pantheon with the kings of Italy. Boccaccio is buried in the small Tuscan town of Certaldo. Petrarch lies in the town of Arquà, not far from Padua. Verdi is in Milan; and Garibaldi on the island of Caprera. The dictator Mussolini is in the small town of Predappio, where he was born. Finally, even though the tomb of Julius Caesar does not exist, contemporary Romans lay flowers by his statue in Rome.

Germany, too, consisted of principalities, and the fate of the German dead is like that of the Italians. One would look in vain for a cemetery in Berlin for famous Germans. However, if you are a student of philosophy, you can place a lit candle on the grave of Hegel and his wife, which is right next to Fichte and his wife. Literature students can do the same on Bertolt Brecht’s grave.

Betrand Defehrt, after Andreas Versalius, Anatomical Study – Skeleton. Hand-colored Engraving, ca; 1770.

There are also special cemeteries for kings, such as, the St. Denis Abbey near Paris, or Wawel cathedral in Krakow. Other nations have similar places. And, of course, the Vatican, where the Popes rest.
Yet politics (the existence or non-existence of central government and the dominance of one city over the rest) is not the only factor that has had influence on what, where, and how the dead rest. Walking through cemeteries, we realize how different they are.

The characteristic thing about most American cemeteries is that they look like grass fields with vertical tombstones, between which the maintenance man drives a lawnmower, making it look “good.” Such design goes beyond what we might suspect is a matter of American efficiency that makes maintenance of cemeteries easier. Just like in all aspects of visual arts, there is a significant difference between the Catholic and Protestant mentalities and their respective sense of aesthetics. While simple tombstones reflect Protestant austerity, Neo-Gothic or Classical Greco-Roman styled temples are characteristic of Catholic cemeteries – though Lafayette Cemetery in New Orleans (a former French colony), Laurel Hill Cemetery in Philadelphia, and a few others, mainly in LA and San Francisco, speak the language of Catholic aesthetics in Protestant America.

Here is another detail which one should not bypass. Walking through the cities and towns of Protestant countries, especially in the US, we notice small cemeteries near churches, close to the main streets, something you hardly ever see in Europe, unless you happen to be in the UK. The reason is simple – these churches are or used to be denominational – Baptist, Presbyterian, Episcopalian, Anglican, Lutheran, Adventist, etc. – and no single cemetery was supposed to belonged to the whole population united by the same confession. The exception to this rule in Catholic countries was the split between the Christian and the Jews who had their own burial places, which since the beginning of the 19th century were situated outside the city limits. As the cities grew and expanded, today they are within the city proper, but still form separate enclaves.

Over a decade ago, my daughter and I flew from Baltimore to Krakow where I was born. We stayed with my friends who happened to live near a cemetery. Each day we would walk through it. What was unusual for us — visitors from the New World — was that there were lots of flowers. It was May and I could not think of any holiday. “Daddy,” my daughter, who was in seventh grade at the time, said, “your people love the dead.”

Rakowicki Cemetery, Krakow, Poland.

“My people” sounded strange, but she was right. We visited several cemeteries in Baltimore as part of her art history education, looking at designs on tombstones, but we did not see any flowers or candles. “My people” love the dead, but it is not just a Polish predilection; and visiting loved ones who passed away is very much alive in other Catholic countries as well. All Saints’ Day is exceptional and most festive. According to historians, the first celebrations of All Saints’ Day took place in the fourth century, around the Feast of the Lemures on May 13th. November 1st, the day we celebrate now, goes back to the seventh century, when Pope Gregory III founded a repository for the relics of all the apostles, martyrs, and saints.

All Saints’ Day is not merely a celebration of the memory of great men and saints. First and foremost, it is a day when we face the dead members of our own families. As we stand by the grave, we experience their painful absence in our lives. The quiet that fills our minds, as we stand there, is their voice that reminds us that we are mortal; that we too, one day, will rest there. We can only hope that we will not be entirely forgotten by our own family; and that at least once a year, someone will visit us to light a candle and lay a chrysanthemum (the flower associated with this day) in memory of us.

Those of us who happen to live in the New World, optimistic and future-oriented, are often oblivious to what cemeteries remind us of – death and the connection to the past. Most cemeteries in big American cities and towns look like they have been deserted for decades. The tombstones stand higgledy-piggledy like scarecrows; the epitaphs badly eroded. It is real-estate, whose inhabitants have no identify. Not many people have visited them for a long time; and over time they have deteriorated. The reason for this is, partly, the mobility of American society; probably unprecedented in world history. In Europe, it is still the case that you die in the same place where you were born; and if you happen to live in a different city, you are close enough to travel to see the family graves.

There is another reason, however. All Saints’ Day, November 1st, like a name day, is part of the Catholic calendar, and because 365 days could not include all the names of the saints, one needed to establish one day to honor them. The practice originated in the Middle Ages, to commemorate the martyrs; and each saint falls on one day of the year. If your name happens to be Patrick, your name day is March 17th. The lavishly celebrated St. Patrick’s Day in the US is one of those Catholic imports to Protestant America. However, as the Reformation did away with the cult of the saints, the name day and All Saints’ Day ceased to be celebrated in most Protestant countries as well.

Now that religious differences between Protestant denominations on the one hand and Protestants, Catholics and Orthodox on the other are, at best, a matter of the past, and being Jewish or Christian matters less than ever before, it is not religious zeal that makes cemeteries look different. It is our perception of life and death. In his essay “Modernity on Endless Trial,” Leszek Kolakowski put his finger on the problem in a way characteristic of his style of thinking:

“The taboo regarding respect for the bodies of the dead seems to be a candidate for extinction, and although the technique of transplanting organs has saved many lives and will doubtlessly save many more, I find it difficult not to feel sympathy for people who anticipate with horror a world in which dead bodies will be no more than a store of parts for the living or raw material for various industrial purposes; perhaps respect for the dead and for the living –and for life itself – are inseparable. Various traditional human bonds which make communal life possible, and without which our existence would be regarded only by greed and fear, are not likely to survive without a taboo system, and it is perhaps better to believe in the validity of even apparently silly taboos than to let them vanish.”

An organized mafia of medical oligarchs trading human organs is not difficult to imagine; and we should not exclude the possibility that as the world becomes more and more rational, some will get sacrificed for others. Two films, Coma (1979) with Jane Fonda and Michael Douglas, and Extreme Measures (1997), with Hugh Grant and Gene Hackman, explore this issue. The desire to prolong life, even at the expense of the living who have parts necessary for the survival of others, is a way of abolishing life. In such a world, I no longer see you as you, but as a walking store of parts necessary for my own survival.

Rakowicki Cemetery, Krakow, Poland.

But there is another scenario, perhaps even more morbid. Why not to give the poor the opportunity to improve their living conditions for a certain number of years, provided they sell their parts in advance. Such a scenario does not involve coercion or the abduction of people, as the two above-mentioned movies suggest, let alone the existence of a medical mafia. All that is needed is a voluntary act on the part of the seller. The argument that says that it is better to live a shorter life than a longer one in poverty is perfectly rational, and thus would have to be considered perfectly legal. Pacta sunt servanda – it would be difficult to question the validity of such a decision. It could even be called “the Faustus clause,” or “the Faustus New Deal,” with a modern-day Mephistopheles. In such a world, cemeteries will no longer be what they were – a place where we venerate the dead or ponder our place in society and the world – but a vast area filled with incomplete human remains.

All scenarios are possible; but something else should worry us too. The dead can become an object of attacks by those who are alive. Recent cases of desecration of Jewish graves in the US, France and Germany show the irrationality of hatred. The “woke” ideology’s onslaught on the Dead White European Males which led wild crowds to tear down monuments of famous people can make them to go after the graves of the famous dead. History knows many cases of grave desecration, and we should not exclude that something like that can happen. It most likely will.


Zbigniew Janowski is the author of Cartesian Theodicy: Descartes’ Quest for Certitude, Index Augustino-CartésienAgamemnon’s Tomb: Polish Oresteia (with Catherine O’Neil), How To Read Descartes’ Meditations. He also is the editor of Leszek Kolakowski’s My Correct Views on EverythingThe Two Eyes of Spinoza and Other Essays on PhilosophersJohn Stuart Mill: On Democracy, Freedom and Government & Other Selected Writings. His new book is Homo Americanus: Rise of Democratic Totalitarianism in America.


The featured image shows, “The Forerunners of Christ with Saints and Martyrs,” likely by Fran Angelico; painted ca. 1420.

Sir Roger Scruton: A Platonic Tribute

Sir Roger Scruton—professor of aesthetics, author, political thinker, composer, theorist of music, ecologist, wine connoisseur, publicist and gadfly at large—passed away on January 12, 2020. As the sad news broke out, a global outpouring of tributes began, testifying to the magnitude of Scruton’s achievement and provoking questions about its meaning. Among the first, Timothy Garton Ash tweeted his sadness for the loss of a “provocative, sometimes outrageous Conservative thinker that a truly liberal society should be glad to have challenging it.”

Sir Roger’s passing is of special significance to my instution Bard College Berlin, which hosted him on two memorable occasions. It is also of personal significance to me. Though I was never a student of his, I had the privilege of knowing Professor Scruton since 1993, when a chance encounter proved to be a turning point in my intellectual path.

The Encounter

I first met Scruton in Krakow, at a conference on national stereotypes. At the time I was a student of psychology at the Jagiellonian University, gearing up to write a master’s thesis on the subject of how and why different nations perceive each other. Poland in those post-Cold War years was in the grip of regime change and a far-reaching cultural transition. Although many aspects of that transition were as contested then as they are now, there seemed to be a broad consensus: in the wake of the Soviet empire’s collapse, rejoining Europe and returning to the West where, as was said, Poland rightfully belonged was the most important political and civilizational objective. And rejoining the West meant embracing liberalism—as a political creed, economic program, and self-critical spirit.

The conference, which took place in Krakow’s newly renovated Theater Academy was imbued with this spirit. Paper after paper denounced cultural stereotypes and brought forward new examples, from the early Disney films to the latest political contests, to evidence and critique of the pervasive presence of prejudice in Western culture. With the message so monotonous, it was difficult to stay attentive.

Then came Roger Scruton. His lecture on Edmund Burke’s defense of prejudice as a distillation of collective experience sought to explain why we should not simply dismiss a phenomenon that might be constitutive of social life. Before rushing to repudiate prejudice, we had better examine its psychological origins and seek to understand its social function. Nor would repudiation help. If stereotypes are indeed necessary, repudiation would do little more than replace old prejudices with new ones.

Roger Scruton speaking at the European College of Liberal Arts, now Bard College Berlin, in 2011 (Photo Credit: Irina Stelea).

Decades later, I still recall the sensation of hearing Scruton’s talk and the shockwaves it sent through the room. Everyone seemed to be sitting on edge, riveted by incomprehension. If the conference was a current that tended in one direction, Scruton swam against it, carried by the sheer force of his eloquent arguments delivered with a generous dose of dry wit.

Did he persuade? No, not even me, thrilled though I was to hear intellectual controversy enter the sleepy conference room, and amazed by his courage to face disapproval. Besides the many points I did not understand (my English was rudimentary back then), I could not grasp how a philosopher could seek to vindicate prejudice, whether in the age of Enlightenment or our own. And this left me with two thinkers—Scruton and Burke—to reckon with. Actually three, for Socrates soon came along to lend an interpretive lens.

After the conference, Professor Scruton and I stayed in touch in the only way practicable back then: by exchanging letters. Two years later, after receiving a stack of philosophy books that I was not in a position to read, I got an invitation to visit him in England while finishing my master’s thesis. Elated, if ill prepared for what to expect, I booked a ticket for a coach that took me across Europe to Calais, then on a ferry to Dover, and onwards to London. From London, Scruton and I continued by train to Kemble—a little town in Wiltshire, where a decrepit-looking car, stocked with books (some, to my surprise, in Arabic) waited to take us on the last stretch to Sunday Hill Farm.

Roger’s home was a stone-walled cottage surrounded by swaths of green. Three or four horses chewed quietly in an enclosure. Sheep like specks of light were scattered in the distance. Little in the picture suggested which century we were in. The cottage itself, though visibly old, was no less discrete. Offering all the modern comforts, its rooms were furnished with objects reclaimed from the ages, each playing its part in a harmonious whole. Here, I sensed, was an alternate universe where time had come to a pause, and past and present gathered to commune and peacefully cohabit. The largest space in the two-story structure was a dusky room with book-lined walls. One of these was all green with small identical-looking volumes that, years later, I would recognize as the Loeb Classical Library. Two pianos balanced the space and sealed its image as a temple of the muses.

As soon as we arrived things fell into a calm, work-focused routine—from the morning tea, to lunch, often prefaced by a horse-ride in the adjacent fields, through the solitary afternoons, to dinner-time when guests showed up and long conversations took place over choice wine and enchanted meals Roger himself cooked. It is at one of those dinners that I first met Sophie, Roger’s wife to be, and also Christina, a high-school student and the oldest daughter of a Rumanian immigrant family that Roger had practically adopted. Though long and hardworking, the days at Sunday Hill Farm did not feel that way. This was because every hour had its special purpose. Roger would take time off writing to attend to a small garden, feed the horses, bake bread, or work on whatever it was he was composing. And my presence seemed to fit seamlessly into this schedule.

A few days into my visit, Roger departed for London, leaving me alone on the farm. Having recently arrived in a country whose ways—driving on the wrong side of the road, for instance—appeared eminently strange to me, I was less than eager to be left on my own. Yet this proved an opportunity to explore the vicinity, venturing to nearby Malmesbury—a small, medieval town which (I would later discover) was the birthplace of Thomas Hobbes and a bloody playground of the wars of religion that had scarred its historic abbey.

Roaming the cottage in Roger’s absence, I was trying to peek into the mindset of this person who would invite a stranger from across the continent and give her trust and welcome. It is only then that I could take a closer look at the small study that hosted Roger’s writing desk and another piano with hand-written scores piled up on it—his first opera. The shelves in the study were occupied mostly with the books—quite a few of them!—Roger had authored on such disparate subjects as music, architecture, politics or modern philosophy. There were also a few novels. At that moment, I came to realize that I was in the presence of something extraordinary, a beautiful vista I had hitherto no experience of: a life dedicated to books and music.

Well, and horses too.

The Gadfly

In Plato’s Apology, Socrates calls himself a gadfly and describes his mission as bearing witness to uncomfortable truths. His community, the polis, he likens to a large horse, strong and well-bred, if a bit dull and sleepy, going mindlessly about its horsey business. To prick the city and his fellow citizens, shake them from their moral slumber, to summon their intellects and awaken their conscience—this, according to Plato’s Socrates, is philosophy’s calling. This calling, however, requires that its votary put himself on the line: not hide behind technical subjects or language only a few understand but enter the fray and speak about the great questions of human life in a manner that is clear and accessible (needless to add, prickly) to the community at large. It also requires the courage to face disagreement and, in Socrates’ case, even death.

Scruton’s life and death were overshadowed by controversies of one kind or another—from his work as the founding editor of the Salisbury Review that, dissenting from the mainstream at home, supported dissidents in Eastern Europe; through his spirited defense of fox-hunting; to the Brexit debates and his involvement in a Tory government commission, whose work he did not live to see in print.

Roger Scruton with Petr Uhl and Vaclav Havel on the occasion of Scruton’s being awarded the Czech Republic Medal of Merit, First Class in 1998.

In the decades that spanned our friendship, and across many embroilments, I came to understand Roger’s philosophical stance and rhetorical gestures as the work of a Socratic gadfly. Understanding, however, was not the same as accepting. And I often questioned the need for these embroilments, resenting them at times, because they seemed to muffle his message and weaken its intellectual and moral authority.

“Why alienate people?” I’d ask. “Why disturb cherished views and call forth public anger? Is this not the lesson Plato drew from Socrates’ death—that philosophy and politics do not truly mesh because the one longs for truth and the other needs lies, more or less noble? Truth, when graspable, is convoluted and complex. Reduced to a plain message, injected into the public space, it becomes lopsided and polemical, an ideology more than wisdom.”

Roger would acknowledge my passionate opinions with a gentle nod. A philosophical modernist, he had made Platonic philosophy, and Socrates as its presumed spokesman, a fertile ground for theoretical disagreement—a disagreement perhaps nowhere more visible than in his recurrent wrestling with the question of love. In practice, however, for Scruton as for Socrates, philosophy to be true to its mission demanded public engagement with all of its existential commitments and costs. The philosopher is not accidentally but essentially a gadfly; all the more so in a society that claims to be open and free. And this, as both understood, was a quest fraught with perilous paradoxes.

In Plato’s account, Socrates was sentenced to death by the people of Athens on a triple charge—of corrupting the youth, not believing in the gods of the city, and making the weaker argument the stronger. If the accusations of corruption and heresy seem clear, the last bit is puzzling. To make the weaker argument the stronger is usually interpreted as insincere sophistry: thanks to rhetorical skills and facility for crafting arguments, the sophist can make any claim prevail, no matter its inherent strength. Like a modern-day debater, he aims at victory not truth, and any argument that wins the jury’s favor has validity enough.

But there is another way to understand the indictment against Socrates that comes to light with the help of Aristotle’s ethics. For Aristotle, virtue is not the opposite to vice, but the mean between two vices. Courage, on that view, is not simply contrary to cowardice. Equally opposed to rashness and timidity, it is a kind of fine-tuning that balances the pull of two extremes. However, if virtue is a mean, it is rarely found in the middle, for each of us has particular tendencies that propel us in one direction more than the other. And so, if one person is prone to temerity while another to fear, in each case courage would look a bit different, and lie closer to one or the other pole.

If we assume that each society or historical moment has its own tendencies and ruling passions that make certain opinions more acceptable than others, to balance these, one would need to champion the weaker view—weaker not in the sense of inherently less valid, but in the sense of less popular. And this because truth, like virtue, is rarely in the extreme; and justice too would require that we weigh all sides of the argument. These sides, Burke famously argued, include not only the living but also the long dead and the yet-to-be-born. In this reading, wherever the culture is going, the philosopher’s mission is to pull the other way, and to side with propositions that, whether forgotten, or not fully realized, tend to be underestimated or ignored—and, in that sense, weaker.

“If I were born in an aristocratic century,” writes Tocqueville, “amid a nation in which the hereditary wealth of some and the irremediable poverty of others held souls as if benumbed in the contemplation of another world, I would want it to be possible for me to stimulate the sentiment of needs … and try to excite the human mind in the pursuit of well-being. Legislators of democracies have other concerns… It is necessary that all those who are interested in the future of democratic societies unite, and that all in concert make continual efforts to spread within these societies the taste for the infinite, the sentiment for the grand, and the love for non-material pleasures.”

To be a gadfly, then, would mean to raise troubling questions, and to point out aspects of social life and our humanity—the need for prejudice, for instance—that risk being overlooked or trampled on by the ideological élan for a particular opinion. It is to caution that not every change is for the better (consider climate); and what may seem like progress today—e.g., moving away from traditional forms of subjection—could yet prove to be an oppression much greater tomorrow (consider totalitarianism). It is to warn that in our hopeful enthusiasm for righting wrongs, by improving one thing we are likely to spoil another; and that, in the great complexity of human affairs, unless fully understood and carefully administered, the cure often proves worse than the disease.

Truth so discerned is bound to offend because it resists our preferences and collective instincts—precisely our prejudice. At the same time, this offense, if earnestly delivered and thoughtfully received, is what propels us toward thinking. It challenges us to consider aspects we may be prone to disregard, and to account for what and why we believe in. Only by listening to those who question our certitudes, Mill argued in On Liberty, can ideology be countered and dead dogma quickened into vital truth. So much so that if liberal society did not have an earnest opponent and conscientious dissenter—its own Socrates—it had better invent him.

Mounting a well-argued opposition to just about every progressive creed—multiculturalism, individualism, atheism, globalism—Scruton was no less a gadfly to the conservatives with whom he otherwise identified. His vision of conservatism, centered on conservation and green politics, was as much a rebuke to Thatcherism as to the Blairite consensus that replaced it. He did not shy away from instructing US Republicans on the good of government. And his vision of the university challenged the anti-establishment zeal of the established professoriat as well as the technocratic Cameron reforms that collapsed the ministry of Education under Business. Whatever his audience, Scruton sought to stir thinking, not applause.

And yet another paradox lurks here. If philosophy’s role is to serve as counterweight for political and intellectuals fads, is the philosopher then necessarily a contrarian – one, whose mission is to dispute whatever most people happen to agree on, so a creature of the crowd after all? A different way to pose the question: is the thinker’s role to play the sceptic and critique popular opinions; or should he also strive to put something fuller and more coherent in their place? If the former, he’d be forever a debunker, always against but never for anything (other than his own importance). And if the latter, is he not in danger, while contesting the dogmas of others, of becoming a dogmatist himself?

Well-aware of these tensions, Scruton deemed them unavoidable. While playfulness and irony, alongside other literary tropes, offered partial solutions, his main recourse was, once again, Socratic—to live his life as an example and seek to practice what he preached. This informed both his decision to leave academia and embrace country life, and the autobiographical turn his books took in the late 1990s. While his chief philosophical purpose was to recover what he called the soul of the world, Scruton recognized that this can only be done in living out his commitments and bearing personal witness to the propositions he put forward. It required that he become, in the original sense of the word, a martyr.

μᾰ́ρτῠς • (mártus) m or f (gen. μᾰ́ρτῠρος) — A.Gr. witness.

Going Home

Among the more puzzling of Plato’s works is a short dialogue called Crito. Set in the eve of Socrates’ execution, it opens as the eponymous Crito, an elderly gentleman of means, comes in the dark before dawn to visit Socrates in prison. He has made all the preparations: bribed the guard, gathered resources, and arranged for a boat to steal his unjustly convicted friend away from his doom.

The conversation that ensues is Socrates’ attempt to reason with his childhood buddy and persuade him (and possibly himself, as well) that submitting to the judgment of the Athenian people is the right course of action; and so that dying as a citizen is preferable to living as an exile. In the course of the conversation, Socrates impersonates the Laws of Athens to deliver arguments that sound patriotic to the point of chauvinism. Invoking his young sons, his plea on behalf of the Laws recalls his own decision, made in advanced age, to become husband and father.

The conversation that ensues is Socrates’ attempt to reason with his childhood friend and persuade him (and possibly himself, as well) that submitting to the judgment of the Athenian people is the right course of action; and so that dying as a citizen is preferable to living as an exile. In the course of the conversation, Socrates impersonates the Laws of Athens to deliver arguments that sound patriotic to the point of chauvinism. Invoking his young sons, his plea on behalf of the Laws recalls his own decision, made in advanced age, to become husband and father.

Sir Roger Scruton’s home in England.

Socrates’ declared allegiance to country and family stands in some tension with the project of philosophy, to which he pledged his life. No respecter of countries or borders, philosophy’s object is to interrogate all human laws and attachments—love itself—in light of a universal standard. Nor does Plato’s Socrates usually come across as a devoted father. More than his biological children, his conversational companions, indeed conversing itself, seem to be the focus of his affection. Is a philosophical life compatible with being a patriotic citizen or responsible paterfamilias, Crito prompts us to ask. How can one be committed to universal truth, or to probing every kind of social convention, and, at the same time, stay true to a particular community and faithfully observe its flawed laws, questionable practices, and harmful judgments, even unto death?

After his talk at that fateful 1993 conference, I came up to Prof. Scruton and we exchanged a few words. “I want you to meet a student of mine” he said and introduced me to Joanna, a Polish woman my age who grew up in the US, where her family was exiled in the aftermath of the 1981 military crackdown on the dissident Solidarity movement. One of Scruton’s best students at Boston University where he taught at the time, Joanna had come along to the conference as a first opportunity to revisit her country of origin. Though at this point she had spent more than half her life in America, the journey to Poland was a homecoming—a charged and meaningful moment that Scruton took as seriously as she did, and which first announced what would become a recurrent theme of our interactions.

Over the decades that followed, Roger did all he could to support my philosophical wanderings; from proofreading my first essays in English and writing letters of recommendation, to patiently enduring my own attempts at playing the gadfly, usually directed at him. Scattered across time and space, and whatever their occasion, our conversations would often end on the same note—the importance of home, and the duties of homecoming, a message that became all the more troubling as my English waxed and my native tongues waned. “You should go home,” he repeated whenever and wherever we met. “Remember to go home.” “What is home?” I’d reply, as it were, Socratically. “Is it a place or a principle, or a figure of speech? Why can’t the world be our home?”

Surely, for Scruton too this had been a question. And he was far from believing that one’s home is, in any simple sense, the place or circumstances of one’s birth. In his own wanderings, he had moved light years away from his lower middle-class origins and his father’s socialist convictions, as he later did from the urban pieties of the academic elite to which he belonged by learning and habits.

Roger deeply loved French culture, and was intellectually at home in Germany. He taught for years in the US where he considered emigrating at some point. He had a soft spot for the countries of Eastern Europe which haunted his novels, and whose decorated hero he had become; and he had a special bond to Lebanon where he first learned Arabic and witnessed civil war as a young man. Like his Englishness, Scruton’s endorsement of rural ways was qualified by profound erudition and cosmopolitan tastes. Nor could any party claim him—or wish to claim him—without reservation. If he had one strong identification, it was with being an outcast and heretic.

And yet, the first law of Scruton’s ethics was the imperative to settle down—espouse an ethos, assume one’s station, and honor one’s roots, despite the estrangement and ironic distance one might feel about the whole thing. Without settling-down, thus acknowledging that one’s view is necessarily a view “from somewhere,” one is a free-floating, ineffectual person and, in an intellectual sense, a dishonest man. At the same time, without the distance and estrangement that thinking stimulates, one’s home would not be a reasoned perspective or self-aware choice, but an unreflective product of accident and custom.

As for Plato’s Socrates, the philosophic quest as Scruton understood it, was not to deconstruct one’s love for family and country, but to give a full account of, and thereby deepen, that love. Indeed, the more difficult it is to define and maintain a notion of home in the modern world, the more important it becomes to insist upon it. This holding on—the capacity and courage to own up to one’s particular commitments, despite or perhaps because of all the reservations one can feel about them—is what truly distinguished the philosopher from the rootless sophist, whose only standing commitment is to unbounded love of power, however obtained.

In Scruton’s diagnosis, most originally delivered as an homage to French viniculture and philosophy, our age is drunk on universalisms demanding that the same principles, analogous practices and mass-produced tastes apply equally everywhere, with no regard to differences of place, history, social conditions, and even species. If universalistic creeds are like strong distillates that—stripped of specificity or local flavor, and detached from communal context—aim for immediate inebriation, Scruton’s proposed remedy was not abstinence or anti-intellectualism, but thoughtful connoisseurship of drinks and ideas.

Such a connoisseurship must begin with the recognition that, if the desire for universality is a heroic aspiration and philosophy’s very raison d’être, it is also a dangerous temptation. While this desire may expand our intellectual horizons, ennoble the arts, and elevate civic sentiments, it cannot be our home. For it demands that, in the name of disembodied abstractions, we abjure the attachment to particular persons or peoples, and repudiate everything we may consider our own—the ways and devotions that distinguish our form of life, and define who we are, individually and collectively.

The weaker argument Scruton made it his life-long mission to uphold was the importance of loving one’s home and protecting the environment, both natural and human, spiritual and physical that sustains it. He shared with many on the left a poignant sense of the destruction wrought by globalized capitalism. Yet he challenged the self-serving mantra of globalized elites that the only effective response is the ever-greater outsourcing of civic agency and decision-making to supranational structures unmoored from any organized community of citizens that can hold them to account.

More soberly, Scruton insisted on the need to revive allegiance to local traditions and to common practices, which alone lend meaning to high-sounding words and abstract ideals. Only by coming together and by drawing on shared modes of thinking and feeling can freedoms be substantiated, the environment protected, and effective solidarities fostered. This insistence went together with a vision of England as a community bound by law and sense of accountability—less a physical location than a spiritual landscape marked by distinctive virtues and sense of beauty. It is to the task of protecting this beauty that his last efforts were dedicated.

“We should recognize,” states the posthumously published report Scruton drafted for the government commission on Building Better, Building Beautiful, “that the pursuit of beauty is an attempt to work with our neighbours, not to impose our views on them. As Kant argued in his great Critique of Judgment, in the judgment of beauty we are ‘suitors for agreement,’ and even if that judgment begins in subjective sentiment, it leads of its own accord to the search for consensus.”

*

My last meeting with Scruton in October 2019 was a lesson in dying, the preparation for which, Plato’s Socrates claimed, was philosophy’s special task. Roger spoke about his mysterious illness and the pains that had become his constant companion—but much more about the gratitude he felt for his life and for those who helped shape it.

“It is clear” he mused serenely, as though considering some abstract matter “that things cannot go on forever. I have said all I had to say, wrote all the books I wanted to write. I’m ready, I suppose.” As if casually, he added: “But life is so sweet…”

He died at home.

Sir Roger Scruton’s home in Virginia, USA (Photo Credit: Christopher Kramer).

Ewa Atanassow is professor at Bard College Berlin. Her area of expertise is the history of social and political thought, especially Tocqueville, as well as questions of nationhood and democratic citizenship. She is the co-editor of Tocqueville and the Frontiers of Democracy, and Liberal Moments: Reading Liberal Texts; and the author of Liberal Dilemmas: Tocqueville on Sovereignty, Nationhood, and Globalization, forthcoming from Princeton University Press.


The featured image shows, “Portrait of Sir Roger Scruton,” by Vernice Satinata; painted in 2020.

The Importance Of Being Monarchical, or How To Temper Democracy

In the mid-1980s, the middle-aged English philosopher, editor of The Salisbury Review, wrote a column in the London Times, in which he noticed that the Austrian throne is empty and pointed to Otto von Habsburg who could fill the void. To some readers, even if they happened to be British subjects, his idea, I suspect, must have appeared facetious. However, Roger Scruton, the author of the column, who was knighted by Prince Charles in 2016, was a serious man. What others thought could be a joke, to Sir Roger was a serious matter. He spent his life defending and giving fresh meaning to what the progressives consider outrageous only because it is old or appears obsolete.

To be sure, the defense of monarchy in an environment in which democracy is thought of as divine, sounds like a sign of madness. Yet nowadays when democracy is performing very poorly and almost every week provides more and more evidence that discredits it, perhaps it is time to rethink our uncritical attitude to it.

On October 9, this year, the Austrian Chancellor, Sebastian Kurz, announced that he would resign, after prosecutors began an investigation into allegations that he used public money to pay off pollsters and journalists for favorable coverage. Eight days earlier, on October 1st, the premier of Australia’s New South Wales, Gladys Berejiklian, “stepped down over a probe into her secret relationship with a lawmaker who is being investigated for corruption.” And on September 30th, former French President, Nikolas Sarkozy, was sentenced to one year for illegal campaign financing. All three scandals happened within less than two weeks.

This is not all. Remember the arch-popular Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva? In July 2017, he was convicted on corruption charges to 10 years in prison. In 2016, the world learned about the so-called “Panama papers.” It was discovered that over one hundred world leaders had offshore accounts to evade paying taxes.

Among them was Oxford-educated “philosopher king,” Abdullah II, of Jordan, who purchased three Malibu properties with the help of offshore companies for $68 million, in the years after the Arab Spring, when his subjects protested against corruption. But kings are kings and have always been in the habit of ripping-off their subjects – something which partisans of the popular government promised democracy would put an end to. Apparently, one does not have to be a king; enough to be a democratic head of state to do what corrupt kings do. The Panama papers include two British Prime ministers – Tony Blair and David Cameron – the Premier of the Czech Republic, several people associated with the Clinton Foundation, and many more.

The USA – the bedrock of democracy – is not a place to look for honest politicians, either. In fact, the US is infested with dishonest politicians, many of whom rot in prison, put there by their electors. In Baltimore, where I resided for almost 15 years, all three mayors during my residence there had to step down on corruption charges. In 2014, Bob McDonnell, the governor of the neighboring state of Virginia, and his wife, Maureen, were indicted on federal corruption charges; so was the governor of Illinois, Rod Blagojevich (who was sentenced to 14 years in prison), as well as three other governors of the same State.

If you still believe that democracy is a solution to the problem of corrupt government, you’d better read Plato’s Republic or Gorgias, or buy a lantern and, like Diogenes in Athens who tried to find an honest man, look for an honest civil servant who puts the good of those who elected him before self-interest. Many of those who believe democracy to be the best confuse commitment to democracy with commitment to simple human honesty and decency. Unfortunately, when it comes to honesty, democracy does not score higher than other regimes and is likely to continue being the source of frustration to those who put their faith in the people.

The list of corrupted democratic politicians will continue to grow in; and this is not a question of probability but certainty. Democracy, it needs to be stressed, provides more transparency than any other system; it may have eliminated the arbitrary brutal use of physical violence by the politicians, which means that we no longer need to be afraid of living under autocrats like generals Pinochet or Franco and shah Reza Pahlavi, or African political gangsters, like Paul Biya of Cameroon, president since 1982, who exploit and abuse their people. However, as thirst for blood among democratic leaders goes unsatisfied, they instead turn filling their pockets and deceive the naïve public that they serve. That is why the system is not working very well.

An army of naïve political scientists and commentators write books for the believers in popular government on “how to save democracy.” The journalists of the Washington Post lie to the public that “democracy dies in darkness,” while supporting corrupt Left-wing politicians. Social activists, on the other hand, scream louder and louder that the only way to save democracy is to expand it even further. The last suggestion is the surest way to corrupt even more people. Absolute power may corrupt absolutely, but any amount of power will also corrupt – which means that allowing more people to govern will also corrupt a greater number of them. In recent decades democracy started looking like a place where everyone could enrich himself. The careless get caught; others get away; and ordinary people get no share in the big pie.

Thomas Jefferson was an idealist who, as we learn from his letter to J. Langdon, 1810, thought that hereditary monarchs were “all body and no mind,” who can do nothing but mischief. But he was also a realist who knew that the only way to make democracy work is, as he explained it John Adams in a letter of October 28, 1813, to find natural aristocrats to rule over the rest: “The natural aristocracy I consider as the most precious gift of nature for the instruction, the trusts, and government of society… May we not even say that that form of government is the best which provides the most effectually for a pure selection of these natural aristoi into the offices of government.”

That was two hundred and eight years ago. Today we can say that Jefferson was mistaken. The democratic environment, which tends to grow and destroy non-democratic elements around it, is fundamentally hostile to creating conditions in which aristocratic virtues can grow. Rather, the opposite is the case – under the influence of democracy even royals succumb to the democratic malaise. It happened to Prince Harry who has recently left the confines of Windsor Castle to settle down in democratic America. So far, the news for the lovers of monarchy is not good. Instead of transplanting aristocratic virtues to America, Prince Harry has become a celebrity. He began his life in the New World by whining on Oprah Winfrey’s show how miserable it is to be a royal and how nasty other royals can be. If you are emotional, you can even feel sorry for him – he is presented as a man who suffered greatly under the heavy yoke of the aristocratic code.

We should not be surprised, however, why democracy suffers from malaise. The political consequence of the decline of aristocratic order was described by the English poet and literary critic, Matthew Arnold. In his essay “On Democracy” (1879), Arnold saw what Jefferson (most likely because his dislike for hereditary aristocracy deprived him of objectivity) missed. He points out that there where aristocracy does not exist, ordinary people are deprived of the ideal that can ennoble them. Where are the Washingtons, Hamiltons and Madisons today? Arnold exclaims in his essay, pointing to the fact that American democracy is unable to regrow the greatness which one found in the generation raised when America was part of the British Crown. What grew instead was the power of the State.

Arnold, it seems, was right, which is testified by the language used in democratic countries. “The most powerful man in the world,” and “the most powerful woman in the world” (as Americans refer to the President and the First Lady); or “the most powerful country in the world” – all are part of everyday journalistic vocabulary in America. (Even the presence of the omnipotent Xi Jing Ping at the same dinner table is unable to change this democratic perception).

It would be wrong to think that such expressions mean that Americans are self-obsessed. Rather, they point to what Matthew Arnold predicted must happen. When a country lost its highest class which “dictated the tone for the nation,” the nation tended to augment the power of the State to see it as dignified and great. However, this democratic jive is not peculiar to America. It can be found in France, another country in which democracy, too, took very deep roots. The President of the Republic acts and looks (especially during the swearing in ceremony) like a secular king, anointed by the people. His residence, the Presidential Palace, just like the White House, reminds you of royal residence.

This is not so in Great Britain. 10 Downing Street looks like an unpretentious townhouse which you see all over London or Baltimore; and it was so even at the end of the 19th century when the British ruled over one fourth of the globe. British Prime Ministers behave like “civil servants.” The reason is simple: Prime ministers in a constitutional monarchy have someone above them, which is a reminder that the power of the people has limits. Whatever a Prime Minister may think of his great talents, the existence of the monarch, even if only symbolic, has a tempering effect on the Prime Minister’s ego. That is why we can’t imagine someone like Donald Trump as British Prime Minister. Were it to happen, I suspect that the British would likely choose to live under a real, not symbolic, monarchy.

Monarchies are a common heritage of all those who look for the cultural roots of Europe. The British monarchy is not the only one in Europe. Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, Spain, Denmark, Sweden, Monaco and Norway are monarchies, too (the Bulgarian king Simeon lives in Spain). But the British monarchy is the most visible and its well-being should matter to everyone. It is the most powerful symbol of the old order which is obsolete only to those who put faith in a system that is far from being ideal. For this defective system to work for the common good we need to be very vigilant. The proclivity for corruption of the managers of this system is (or should be) all too obvious and given the fact how often these managers of democracy are charged with financial impropriety, one may wonder whether any constitutional monarch would survive if he was so often implicated in corruption scandals.

However, what should worry us more than financial scandals are the totalitarian tendencies which democracies developed in the last several decades. Monarchy is a place where a nation finds the continuity of its tradition while totalitarian regimes erase all traces of the past. Democracies today are in the process of doing just that. Changes in the language so that it mirrors an egalitarian worldview, destruction of monuments, changes in educational curricula, forcing us to accept the idea that sex is a matter of choice are the most visible signs of the break with tradition. However, why that is the case should not surprise us. The past and human relationships tell us that reality is hierarchical. Hierarchy is what the progressive egalitarians are against. The past stands in their way to claim absolute power.

There is only one other institution which is like monarchy: it is the Papacy in which the Catholics, regardless of their nationality, find the continuity of their tradition. In one respect, the Papacy is an even more powerful symbol than monarchy – it is older than any single dynasty, and it includes our Greek and Roman heritage, while the monarchy is national. To be sure, not all popes were saints. Only a few of them lived a life which would lead anyone to heaven. But saintliness of life applies to individuals, while tradition is group behavior. When it is based on high ideals, tradition translates into noble behavior of a group, which we call a nation. The function of tradition is to provide us with signs that lead us in this life. Without clear signs on how to behave, nations are lost. They become demoralized and are in danger of indulging in monstrous behavior.

The monarchy will last as long as the royals behave like royals. This is what they owe us — ordinary people. We do not need royals who act like celebrities; we need the aristocracy to ennoble us, take us to a higher level. Once royals act like the commons, the monarchy will vanish; and when that happens, the future will likely, once again, belong to nationalist democracies turned totalitarian. As 20th century experience teaches us, democracies tend to collapse in times of crises and generate hard-core dictatorships, outside of which there is no source of values except ideology.

Mr. Trump acted like those mad kings described by Thomas Jefferson in his letter. But the problem with Jefferson’s argument against monarchy, which is the only one he formulated, is that one can always dethrone a mad ruler and replace him with a sane one. However, it is impossible to dethrone a population seized by egalitarian madness, enticed by populist demagogues who speak like Mussolini or Hitler. Seeing Greta Thunberg on the throne of Sweden would be something truly terrifying. We can only hope that the Swedish king, Carl Gustaf, will continue to rule with dignity, as he has done for many decades, and that monarchies will survive to save us from mad populists and democratic egalitarians.


Zbigniew Janowski is the author of several books on 17th century philosophy, as well as, Homo Americanus: The Rise of Totalitarian Democracy in America and is the editor of John Stuart Mill’s writings.


The featured image shows, “The Coronation of Queen Victoria in Westminster Abbey 28 June 1838,” by Sir George Hayter; painted in 1838.