The Dark Enlightenment Exposed
I first heard about the Dark Enlightenment (aka “Neo-Reaction” or just “Reaction”) last year, the year after I graduated from college and was interning at a conservative think tank. I briefly become involved with the Dark Enlightenment and then left the movement in disgust. Here is what I learned:
- The Dark Enlightenment is controlled by what the media call “Sith Lords”. You have more public Lords like Mencius Moldbug and Nick Land, but there are even some Lords up higher whose names are not revealed. They say the Master Lord says ‘Et Ego in Arcadia’ which is an anagram for ‘Tego Arcana Dei’ (“I hide the secrets of God”).
- But only the media call them ‘Sith Lords’. In Inner Speak, they will often use phrases like the Men of Númenor or the Eldars.
- I never met any of the higher Eldars, but I did once meet an Eldar in Training. I don’t know his real name but people called him Legolas. He had long blond hair, was dressed like a 19th century count, and wore a pendant that had both a Christian Cross and Thor’s Hammer on it.
- The movement is a weird mixture of ethno-nationalists, futurists, monarchists, PUAs (“pick-up artists” like Chateau Heartiste), Trad Catholics, Trad Protestants, etc. They all believe in HBD (what they call “human biodiversity” i.e. racism) but disagree on some other minor points.
- The religious people in the movement (both Christians and pagans) practice what is called “identitarian religion” (religion that doesn’t deny ethnic identity).
- Some of the rising stars of the Dark Enlightenment on the internet seem to be Radish Magazine, Occam’s Razor Mag, and Theden TV.
- The Dark Enlightenment allegedly has millions of dollars of money to play with. They have a couple big donors. One is rumored to be a major tech tycoon in Silicon Valley. They actually had a private 3-day meeting on an island which was furnished with a French chef, etc. Different forms of formal attire were required for each day (tuxedos, 3-piece suits, etc), and some weird costumes were required too (capes, hoods, etc) — which sound like a pagan cult. (I wasn’t at this function but heard about it.)
- I was initiated into the first stages of the Dark Enlightenment, which involved me stripping down naked so people could “inspect my phenotype”. I was then given a series of very personal questions, often relating to sexual matters. I was then told to put on a black cape. (I really regret doing this but at the time I was younger, more impressionable and eager to please.)
- For the initial oath taking, everyone must swear on a copy of Darwin’s Origin of Species, just to show their fidelity to HBD. After that, for the later oaths, seculars will swear again on Darwin, while Christians will swear on the Bible, and pagans on the Prose Edda or Iliad.
- At one of the meetings I heard someone continuously chanting “gens alba conservanda est” (Latin for “the white race must be preserved”) and then others were chanting things in Anglo-Saxon, Old Norse and Old German, but I don’t know those languages so I can’t remember exactly what they were saying.
- They also have all their own secret handshakes, and their own terminology [like the Cathedral ("political correctness"), thedening ("re-establishing ethnic group identity"), genophilia ("love of one's own race"), NRx ("neoreaction"), etc.].
- On the philosophical level, this movement is not entirely original. Much of it is borrowed from the Identitarian movement in Europe. They also all detest democracy. They are not trying to be a “populist movement” but are only trying to convert other elites to their way of thinking.
This whole movement is like a secret cult, which is why I left. Also, because of the valiant and brave efforts of people on the net exposing this movement, I saw this cult for the evil it truly is. Please stay away from it.
The thing about nascent movements like this is that it’s hard to know when to pay attention and when to ignore them. If you ignore them they can grow in the dark, like mushrooms on dung. If you make too much fuss, you can attract idiots–particularly extremist idiots–who automatically assume that anything normal people find objectionable must be awesome, radical, and “not PC” and therefore good. But of course, cannibalism is not PC either and embracing something simply and solely on the basis that it is a “reaction” is one of the stupidest things humans can do. You can’t build a life on protest and reaction. You have to be for something, not merely against something. And at the end of the day, the only real core of DE “thought” is to be for racialism.
Much of the stuff written above describes a sect that brings out belly laughs. Eldar? Men of Numenor? Seriously? Tolkien would have these overgrown D and D players’ guts for garters if he heard they were exploiting his work for their deplorable cultus. Particularly since (which is my main concern about them) they are using his work as a grab bag of code words for their deep-rooted racialist heresy. Here’s what Tolkien actually thought of racialist bullshit:
When J.R.R. Tolkien published The Hobbit on September 21st, 1937, it was immediately met with critical acclaim and high levels of commercial demand.
Naturally, in the ensuing months, publishing houses around Europe contacted Tolkien to enquire about translating and publishing the acclaimed popular novel in their respective tongues. The Berlin publisher Rütten & Loening was on the verge of printing its own German-language version of The Hobbit, when suddenly they requested written documentation of Tolkien’s Aryan heritage. This request so infuriated Tolkien that he penned a letter to his publisher and friend Stanley Unwin. It read:
I must say the enclosed letter from Rütten & Loening is a bit stiff. Do I suffer this impertinence because of the possession of a German name, or do their lunatic laws require a certificate of arisch (aryan) origin from all persons of all countries?
Personally, I should be inclined to refuse to give any Bestätigung (although it happens that I can), and let a German translation go hang. In any case I should object strongly to any such declaration appearing in print… I have many Jewish friends, and should regret giving any colour to the notion that I subscribed to the wholly pernicious and unscientific race-doctrine.
You are primarily concerned, and I cannot jeopardize the chance of a German publication without your approval. So I submit two drafts of possible answers.
Of the two letters which Tolkien went on to draft for Rütten & Loening, one did not even acknowledge their request for racial documentation, and the other rebuked completely their racist ideology and historically baseless appropriation of the label “Aryan.” While we do not know which one Stanley Unwin eventually sent, the latter is reproduced below. It was dated July 25th, 1938.
Thank you for your letter. I regret that I am not clear as to what you intend by “arisch.” I am not of Aryan extraction: that is Indo-Iranian; as far as I am aware none of my ancestors spoke Hindustani, Persian, Gypsy, or any related dialects. But if I am to understand that you are enquiring whether I am of Jewish origin, I can only reply that I regret that I appear to have no ancestors of that gifted people. My great-great-grandfather came to England in the eighteenth century from Germany: the main part of my descent is therefore purely English, and I am an English subject – which should be sufficient. I have been accustomed, nonetheless, to regard my German name with pride, and continued to do so throughout the period of the late regrettable war, in which I served in the English army. I cannot, however, forbear to comment that if impertinent and irrelevant inquiries of this sort are to become the rule in matters of literature, then the time is not far distant when a German name will no longer be a source of pride.
Your enquiry is doubtless made in order to comply with the laws of your own country, but that this should be held to apply to the subjects of another state would be improper, even if it had (as it has not) any bearing whatsoever on the merits of my work or its sustainability for publication, of which you appear to have satisfied yourselves without reference to my Abstammung.
It’s funny: Tolkien and his work were extremely popular among Nazi elites who were fixated on his academic writings about Germanic history and the Old Norse dialect. The sentiment, however, was hardly reciprocated, as the comments above evince. In a letter to his son Michael, which he penned on June 9th, 1941, Tolkien wrote,
I have in this War a burning private grudge—which would probably make me a better soldier at 49 than I was at 22: against that ruddy little ignoramus Adolf Hitler … Ruining, perverting, misapplying, and making for ever accursed, that noble northern spirit, a supreme contribution to Europe, which I have ever loved, and tried to present in its true light.
My sympathies are entirely with Tolkien, and the DE’s sympathies are entirely with Hitler’s in continuing to ruin, pervert, misapply and make still more accursed the noble northern spirit Tolkien loved.
My reader’s experience points out what is the real focal point of DE crap amidst whatever boutique monarchist fantasies and silly rites and esoterica may occupy the elitists, fringe nuts, Reactionary Catholics and cocky college sophomores in the Vanguard of History attracted to this BS: the heresy of racialism and the grave sin of pride. It also shows why the movement is gaining ground among the young: because it appeals to pride and uses the grievances of conservatives against “the Cathedral” (a bogeyman compact of PC lefties, holders of ordinary Christian morality, minorities imagined to threaten “the Real America”, and most normal decent people) to tell post-Christian conservatives that they are Special and the herd (most of the human race) are to be dismissed with Nietschzean hubris by the Ubermenschen.
Some will, with some legitimacy, point out that the kindest word you can use to describe the antics and ideas my reader describes is “whackadoodle.” True. So, for that matter, were the antics and ideas of the sundry racist sects, movements, crack-brained secret societies and kooks who constituted the ridiculous esoterica that fascinated Himmler. Had National Socialism never gained the force of arms it would have been–from a sociological and political perspective–absolutely hilarious. From a spiritual perspective, however, it would have remained as spiritually deadly as ever because it was rooted–as DE is rooted–in the sin of pride and racism.
So do I think DE will become a national movement of serious power? I’m skeptical of this. Indeed, I’m skeptical that this particular report describes anything beyond a local manifestation of one particular little group that takes itself seriously. But so what? I do think that it is already making inroads among young people like my reader and that those under its sway are in grave spiritual danger. There are lots of trendy ideas about that don’t have to lead to mass murder in order to kill the soul.
Catholics should not touch this absurd filth with a barge pole. That it is absurd does not make it one whit less filthy.
Oh. And “Hey girl! I want to inspect your phenotype” has to be biggest Loser Nerd Living in the Basement Endlessly Watching “Triumph of the Will” Warning to Women in Human History. The people most obsessed with passing on their Master Race genes always seem to be the ones who can’t get a date. As ever, the first line of defense against such people is laughter. “The devil, the proud spirit, cannot endure to be mocked.” – St. Thomas More