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Remembering René Guénon:
November 15, 1886 to January 7, 1951

Rene-guenon-1925286 words

René Guénon was born on this day in 1886. Along with Julius Evola, Guénon was one of the leading figures in the Traditionalist school, which has deeply influenced my own outlook and the metapolitical mission and editorial agenda of Counter-Currents Publishing and North American New Right.

In commemoration of his birth, I wish to draw your attention to the following works on this website.

This relative handful of articles does not give a true sense of Guénon’s importance, for along with Evola, Nietzsche, and Spengler, he is also one of the most widely mentioned thinkers on this site. It is a presence, and an influence, that will only grow in time.

Those looking for an introduction to Guénon’s work should begin with the short and relatively accessible The Crisis of the Modern World. For a judicious overview of Guénon’s works, see The Essential René Guénon: Metaphysics, Tradition, and the Crisis of Modernity. My personal favorite among Guénon’s books, and the one the provides the most “empirical” access to the idea of Tradition, is Symbols of Sacred Science.

For a brief biography of Guénon, see Robin Waterfield, René Guénon and the Future of the West: The Life and Writings of a 20th-Century Metaphysician. For an interesting and readable historical/journalistic account of Traditionalism, see Mark Sedgwick, Against the Modern World: Traditionalism and the Secret Intellectual History of the Twentieth Century.

 

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One Comment

  1. Kundalini Joe
    Posted November 18, 2013 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    I’m not sure how to describe Guénon’s writing. He’s a phlegmatic character who asserts bold boundaries. He explains like an insufferably remote observer, an all too contemplative sage, then makes a stinging judgement.

    It’s interesting that he’s sharing a page with Sir John Tavener, who has voiced his scorn for syncretism. Maybe all the padding in Guénon’s writing, the explanations that test my patience, are the product of his delicate task: to show the unity of Primordial Traditions without succumbing to false likenesses, relativity and syncretism. So Guénon is a painfully cautious writer who often circles back to explain his case from a slightly different angle. He’s precious but no more than integrity itself is precious.

    I read Guénon like a man who’s gone through a bad divorce from country, religion and culture. I need the elementary, sometimes redundant, tutoring. It is boring and bracing. Without a sturdy foundation, I won’t be able resume living and fight back. And I don’t want to be a Whiteguy who soley defines himself by negatives: anti-Jew, anti-Black, anti-NWO and so forth. That’s the way to madness and manipulation.

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