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Old 01-04-2006, 08:13 AM
SeC SeC is offline
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Default Mystical Anarchism

Mystical Anarchism
The sway of ‘the Tibetan’ reached beyond the Imperial court into the Russian intelligentsia and further still to the subterranean world of espionage and revolutionary politics. One of the intellectual movements at the time of the 1905 political upheavals was called "Mystical Anarchism". Two of its leading exponents were the poet and writer Viacheslav Ivanov and George Chulkov, both associates of Dr. Badmaev. Chulkov, like ‘the Tibetan’, is described as an unconscious medium transmitting mysterious forces.
A radical political doctrine aimed at reconciling individual freedom and social harmony, Mystical Anarchism drew on the ideas of Friedrick Nietzsche. This is not surprising when we consider Nietzsche’s positive view of Russia as the antithesis of the decadent West, and the German philosopher’s appreciation of Buddhism and Oriental culture.
According to the historian Bernice Glatzer Rosenthal, Mystical Anarchists, convinced "that unseen forces are guiding events here on earth, believed that political revolution reflected realignments in the cosmic sphere, and that a new world of freedom, beauty, and love was imminent."
Advocating the abolition of all external authorities and all constraints on the individual – government, law, morality, social custom – they were indifferent to legal rights as merely "formal freedoms" and opposed constitutions and parliaments in favor of sobornost’. By sobornost’ they meant a free community united by love and faith whose members retain their individuality (as distinct from individualism, self-affirmation apart from or against the community)….
They grounded this ideal in their notion of the "mystical person," the soul or the psyche, which seeks union with others and recognizes itself as a microcosm of the macrocosm, as distinct from the "empirical person," the I or the ego, which asserts itself apart from or against others. Evoking and developing this "mystical person" would make feasible a "new organic society" united by invisible inner ties of love (eros, not agape), "mystical experience," and sacrifice – the very opposite of liberal society, based on the social contract and mutual self-interest and characterized by rational discourse.9
Mystical Anarchism is a thoroughly Eurasian sociopolitical idea. Here we have a most arcane motif in a modern form: The great struggle of the empirical, plutocratic Western civilisation, against the mystical, sacrificial culture of Eurasia. In occult terms it is the conflict of the impulse of ‘Shambhala’ with the renegades of ‘Atlantean civilisation’. The Brotherhood of the Northern Light battling it out with the Brothers of the Shadow, external manifestation of the long war between the agents of Being and Non-Being.
Nicholas Berdyaev, Dmitri Merezhkovsky, Zenaida Hipius, Valerri Briusov, Mikhail Kuzmin, Alexandre Blok, Vasili Rozanov, along with a host of other Russian poets, writers and artists, transmitted different aspects of Mystical Anarchism and the Eurasian vision. When in the years before the Revolution the Sufi Master Inayat Khan visited Russia, he found much to commend in "the Eastern type of discipleship which is natural to the nation."
Merezhkovsky saw the possibility of evolving a "new religious consciousness" from the two peculiarly Russian types represented by Tolstoy and Dostoievsky. Tolstoy stood for a pantheistic mysticism of the flesh, and Dostoievsky for the more ascetic spiritual values. "In this Russia the ‘Man-God’ shall be manifested to the Western world, and the ‘God-man’ for the first time to the Eastern, and shall be, for those whose thinking already reconciles both hemispheres the ‘One in Two.’"
After the Bolshevic Revolution, Blok contrasted the new Russia with the West. He called Russia the "Scythian," i.e., the young, fresh nation whose destiny it was to challenge the decaying West:
We are the Scythians, we are the Asians… Centuries of your days are but an hour to us, Yet like obedient slaves, We’ve held a shield between two hostile races – Europe, and the Mongol hordes… From war and horror come to our open arms, The embrace of kin, Put the old sword away while there’s time, Hail us brothers… Ah, Old World, before you have perished, join our fraternal banquet.
The poet Nikolai Kliuev and his young friend Sergei Esenin featured occult images and Eurasian themes in their work. At the end of 1917 Kliuev (1887-1937), a prophet and emissary of Eurasia, wrote:
We are the host of sunbearers.
On the hub of the universe
we will erect a hundred-story, fiery house.
China and Europe, the North and the South
Will come to the chamber in a round-dance of playmates
to match together Abyss and Zenith.
Their godfather is God Himself and their Mother is Russia.
Kliuev’s protege, Esenin (1895-1925), longed for the end of the old world and its replacement by a new one, and even proclaimed a new religious trend called "Aggelism," with clear roots in Russian Gnosticism. He hailed both Christ and Gautama the Buddha as geniuses because they were men of "word and deed". In a letter to a friend, Esenin wrote:
People, look at yourselves, did not Christs emerge from you, and can you not be Christs? Can I with will-power not be a Christ…? *
How absurd all our life is. It distorts us from the cradle, and instead of truly real people some kind of monster emerges.
He warned the United States, to him the symbol of all non-Russian and rationalist sources, not to commit the mistake of "unbelief" and ignore the new "message" from Russia, as the way to the new life is only through Russia. A friend wrote how Esenin and his fellow ‘Scythian’ poets wanted a "deepening of the political revolution to the social" and came to regard Russian Marxism as "coarse". Before his death Esenin became convinced ‘evil forces’ had usurped the Revolution and the Bolshevics betrayed Russia’s mission.
The famed poet Nikolai Kliuev knew both Dr. Badmaev and Grigory Rasputin, and like the latter had been initiated into a secret school of Christian sexual mysticism with similarities to Tibetan Tantra and Indian Shivaism. "They called me a Rasputin," Kliuev wrote in a 1918 poem. Kliuev’s spirituality was deeply rooted in the tradition of the Russian religious dissidents like the Old Believers, the Khlysty and Skoptsy, who formed a veritable subterranean river among the common people. Kliuev admitted how challenged by a Khlyst elder to "become a Christ," he was introduced to the secret community of "Dove brethren". With the help of "various people of secret identity", Kliuev traveled all over Russia participating in secret rituals and imbibing the occult traditions of the Russian East.
In his poems Kliuev sought to convey the mystic spirit of Eurasia.
He was a prophet of Belovodia, the name given by Russian Old Believers to the awaited earthly paradise similar to Shambhala. *
Kliuev envisioned a radical transformation of Russia that would bring about a classless society where peasant culture would triumph over industrialism, capitalism, and the general mechanisation of life. He expressed his concern about the dangers of soulless Western civilisation in a 1914 letter to a friend:
Every day I go into the grove – and sit there by a little chapel – and the age-old pine tree, but an inch to the sky, I think about you… I kiss your eyes and your dear heart… O, mother wilderness! Paradise of the spirit… How hateful and black seems all the so-called civilised world and what I would give, what Golgotha I would bear – so that America should not encroach upon the blue-feathered dawn… upon the fairy tale hut.
The Russian philosopher Nicholas Berdyaev articulated the vision shared by pre-revolution Russian thinkers as well as the cultural elite, when he wrote of the end of Western rationalism and the birth of a new era of the spirit which would witness the struggle of Christ and Antichrist. He saw the popularity of mystical and occult doctrines as proof of the approach of this New Era, and called for a "new knighthood". "Man is not a unit in the universe, forming part of an unrational machine, but a living member of an organic hierarchy, belonging to a real and living whole." Berdyaev’s attacks on Western materialist values only reflected a view widely held by Russian society. Writing in exile in the early 1930s he observed:
Individualism, the ‘atomisation’ of society, the inordinate acquisitiveness of the world, indefinite over-population and the endlessness of people’s needs, the lack of faith, the weakening of the spiritual life, these and other are the causes which have contributed to build up that industrial capitalist system which has changed the face of human life and broken its rhythm with nature.


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