Guénon's Excessive Faith in Catholicism

& the Secularization & Deconsecration of the World of Action & Virility

(from "The Path of Cinnabar")




[...] Given the overall perspective of Revolt, the book also appeared to be lacking the same faith in Catholicism as a positive point of reference that marked the work of other traditionalist authors. As I previously mentioned, Guénon had argued that the Catholic Church had provided Europe with a traditional order, and that a return to traditional Catholicism - as I already mentioned with regard to The Mask and Face of Contemporary Spiritualism - constituted the only means for a rebirth of the West and an overcoming of the crisis of the modern world. Consequently, Guénon had directed a more or less explicit appeal to the representatives of the Catholic tradition (in the letters we privately exchanged, however, Guénon had confessed that while he had felt obliged to launch such an appeal, he had also predicted its failure).

As I stated in the conclusion to Revolt, I could not agree with Guénon on this point. Catholicism, I argued, had failed to give proof of any restraining or creative power even in the past, when material and intellectual conditions were far more favorable. Rather, Catholicism was one of the factors which contributed to the dissolution of the West: for Catholicism had caused a disastrous fracture by stripping spirituality of virility and advocating the supremacy of priestly holiness in place of primordial synthesis and centrality, thus favoring the secularization and deconsecration of the world of action and virility. Naturally, Revolt did not emphasize those aspects of Catholicism which The Mask and Face of Contemporary Spiritualism had praised from a purely doctrinal or esoteric perspective. In my conclusion to the second edition of Revolt, following an evaluation of certain new experiences, I argued that: 'Those individuals who today consider themselves to be men of Tradition on the simple grounds of their adherence to Catholicism are stopping midway, for they show no awareness of the series of causes, and of the world of origins and absolute values.’




click here to return to JuliusEvola.Net /text archive