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Racial Civil Religion

civilreligion1,512 words

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For my purposes, I will define a religion as the communal practice of honoring the holy. By the holy, I do not necessarily mean a God or gods or any supernatural beings, whether immanent or transcendent. What I mean is the highest good in any belief system, that to which all lower values must defer and, in a conflict, be sacrificed.

One can either duly honor the highest value, or one can ignore, denigrate, and profane it. Religion honors it. But it is not enough merely to honor the highest good in thought. One must do so in action. But even that is not yet religion. To actively honor the highest good individually is to lead a righteous life. To honor the highest good collectively, in community with others, that is religion. Such collective honors to the highest good are rituals.

Religion, on this view, is inherently communal and inherently ritualistic. But it is not inherently theistic or supernatural. A community could hold itself—its origins, its existence, and its destiny—to be the highest good and make itself the object of a civil religion, of communal rituals of self-remembrance and self-perpetuation: honoring heroes and ancestors, sanctifying marriage and family life, sacralizing education and coming-of-age, solemnly commemorating great historical events, demonizing enemies, damning traitors, and so forth.

I believe that there is one highest good for any community that persists over time. For religion—a common hierarchy of values combined with a means for collectively honoring and perpetuating them—is the primary preserver of unity. A community with multiple highest goods and religions may appear in a historical freeze frame, but I would argue that if you let the film run, you will see that such a society is actually in the process of decomposition. There are many values and forces that pull societies apart. A society will perish, therefore, if its continued unity is not valued, and if that value is not made into an actual cohesive force by being given collective honor through a civil religion. Mere external, legal force is not enough if its goals are not seen as legitimate in the minds of the people.

What makes a community one need not have anything to do with religion. A community can emerge simply because of geographical isolation and shared blood, language, and customs. But what sustains a community as one over time has everything to do with religion. There are, of course, deep-seated, entirely natural inclinations to love one’s own and to distrust strangers. But these alone are not enough to preserve distinct communities.

Communities can perish by splitting apart and by merging with others. Sometimes communities with common values split because they fall into quarreling due to scarcity. Sometimes radically different communities and races merge and blend with one other, due to greed and lust. For communities to stick together, they have to make unity a higher value than family and factional loyalties and individual greed, lust, and ambition. Making such priorities stick is a matter of religion.

Of course, the unity of a community may still be threatened if there are still higher values above it, for instance universal brotherhood, or capitalist wealth accumulation, or Communist wealth redistribution. Thus the best way to preserve a community is to make it the highest value, i.e., to erect a civil religion.

If a common religion preserves the unity of a society, whence the religious pluralism of modern Western societies? There are essentially two explanations. First, the pluralism could be illusory. Second, the unity could be illusory or transitory. Both are true of the West.

Western religious pluralism is in part illusory. It is a mistake to identify the plurality of Christian sects with genuine religious pluralism, for since the 17th-century, Christianity has not been the dominant religion of the West. In 1648, the Peace of Westphalia ended the Thirty Years’ War between Protestants and Catholics. In 1660, the Restoration ended Puritan rule in England. Both events in fact replaced Christianity as the dominant religion of the West with a new civil religion of Liberal Universalism. In effect, the values of religious tolerance, social peace, and secular progress were raised above Christianity, and ever since, Christianity has submitted—sometimes eagerly, sometimes grudgingly, but submitted—to this new civil religion.

Second, Western unity is in part illusory, because Liberal Universalism has opened Europe to subversion and colonization by peoples who pay lip service to Liberal Universalism even as they practice tribal forms of particularism (most prominently, Jews, but also East and South Asians and other Third World immigrants) or rival, illiberal forms of universalism (Islam, Marxism). Liberal Universalist society, because it does not insist on genuine reciprocity from others, is a self-subverting system that will be dismembered by the aliens it has allowed in its midst.

White Nationalism, as I conceive of it, is not just a political philosophy, competing with other political philosophies for power under Liberal Universalist hegemony. Rather, we must aim at displacing Liberal Universalism and establishing a White Nationalist hegemony, a new civil religion for the West which treats the preservation and flourishing of our race as the highest good, to which all lesser values must be subordinated. White Nationalism must make the highest good of our race the center of a public cult celebrating our identity, our heritage, our heroes, and our Faustian destiny.

From this point of view, the debates about Christianity versus Paganism in White Nationalist circles seem beside the point.

The critics of Christianity are right: Christian values are at best indifferent to racial preservation and at root hostile to it. Beyond that, Christianity is not really an alternative to Liberal Universalism, which has simply secularized Christian values and eschatological fantasies.

But the critics of Christianity are wrong to think that Christianity is, today, the primary enemy. For the real religion of our time is Liberal Universalism, to which even the Pope bends his knee.

Besides, most of the people who counsel a return to Christendom actually picture just an earlier, less overtly decadent period in the history of Western Liberal Universalism. If they actually knew anything about the real history of Christendom—if they read a history of the Albigensian Crusade, the Thirty Years’ War, or the English Civil War, for instance—most of them would reject a real Christian restoration in horror.

I have no doubt that the indigenous European folk religions can be revivified through studying the fragments that have come down to us, accessing traces of living traditions, and having direct experiences of the numinous. I have no doubt that European folk religions are more consistent with European identity politics than Christianity, Islam, Liberal Universalism, etc.

But I see no sign that neo-pagans seriously wish to establish a pagan civil religion. Most neo-pagans seem entirely content with being socially marginal, “tolerated” outsiders in what they imagine is a Christian society.

Moreover, when politics comes up, neo-pagans basically divide themselves into two camps: Liberal Universalists and White Nationalists. And let us be frank: the vast majority are Liberal Universalists and White Nationalists first, and neo-pagans second.

For White Nationalists, the real religious struggle of our time should not be between Christians and pagans. Christianity does not rule, and neo-pagans don’t even know what that would entail. The real struggle is between Liberal Universalism and White Nationalism.

So what would the religious landscape look like under White Nationalist hegemony?

First of all, under Liberal Universalist hegemony there is complete unity on Liberal Universalist values. Likewise, under White Nationalism, there would be complete unity on the supreme importance of white racial preservation and progress. The denigration or destruction of our race would lie outside the parameters of acceptable opinion, just as White Nationalism is currently outside the boundaries of polite society. All rival civil religions and hegemonies would be suppressed: Liberalism, Marxism, Islam, Judaism, etc.

Second, just as under Liberal Universalist hegemony, there would be complete pluralism and tolerance in all unimportant matters. As long as Christian denominations do not challenge the racial civil religion, they will enjoy the same status as they do today under Liberal Universalism. The same goes for all forms of neo-paganism, imports from the Far East, and any other religion you care to make up.

Since Christianity’s kingdom is not of this world, and since the church has a long history of supple accommodation to whatever Caesar is in power, Christianity will quickly reconcile itself with racial civil religion.

Many of the values of Liberal Universalism—private enterprise, private life, freedom of thought, speech, and creativity, etc.—can also be preserved under a White Nationalist hegemony insofar as they are consistent with racial survival and health.

Under a White Nationalist hegemony, it would be understood that the Racial Civil Religion would not fully satisfy the spiritual needs of everyone. But, as in Antiquity, everyone would be free to explore mystery cults and foreign faiths as long as they do not undermine our race. But for me, my race is not just my nation, it is my religion as well.



  1. Posted August 3, 2013 at 2:36 am | Permalink

    Great article. Oddly enough I was just brainstorming the idea of a White civil religion. I tried to post it here but it doesn’t seem to get through? Here’s a link to it at my blog:

  2. Greg P.
    Posted August 3, 2013 at 3:22 am | Permalink

    Yes! Exactly! Now, how do we make this become the religion of our people, or at least of enough to reach a critical mass? That is the real question to ponder.

    I don’t think Jews foisted the Moral Universalist religion on us, I think it was more or less organic and they merely took advantage of it and have maximized it to our disadvantage. It was probably in the making a long time and took quite a while to spread. I wonder if anyone has consciously sought to establish this type of religion before and met with success. I’m sure there must be plenty of at least somewhat similar examples. Intriguing! Counter-Currents is the perfect setting for this to be explored.

    • Posted August 3, 2013 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

      Nietzsche disagrees, puts the blame on St. Paul the former Jewish Parissee Saul of Tarsus. Nietzsche argues that St Paul/Saul was a racially conscious Jew who created a universalist, race denying cult of Judeo Christianity to corrupt and weaken the Whote Greeko Roman world that had temporarily conquered the Jewish people.

      Read the parts of St. Paul’s lying propaganda that “there are no Greeks or Jews, just those who’ve accepted Jesus.”

      Here’s the link to the Nietzsche dissection of Judeo Christianity:

  3. Verlis
    Posted August 3, 2013 at 4:38 am | Permalink

    Greg, whether you care to hear it or not, I would like to go on record as affirming that that all sounds quite reasonable – and summed up in a serendipitous 1488 words too, nice. If people were to say to me, “Verlis, you’re not a WN but you know quite a bit about them. Tell us, what they do want, what do they stand for, what are they all about, and what does it mean for the rest of us?” I think I could use essays like this in making the case that WNs are not inherently (not endlessly, limitlessly) belligerent, that they can be accommodated, that accommodating them would not necessarily be catastrophic (as is commonly assumed), and even that accommodating them is the right thing to do.

    This may seem like a small, trifling detail and, true enough, today it is. But I wonder whether in the long-run it might not prove a very important detail. See, WNs, I think, are wrong – eminently understandably wrong, but wrong nonetheless – to assume that they are necessarily all alone in the world, that no could possibly ever even sympathize with their predicament, much less make (limited) common cause with them. This outlook, rife among the WN rank-and-file, develops much less because of any studied reflection on the fundamental nature of racial issues, and much more as a result of following the lead of WN essayists who, after long years of fruitless endeavor, write from the pits of despair. As an observer, I can see some hopeful signs – Whitaker’s anti-anti-whitism/Mantraism is one – that this trend may be changing.

  4. Ulf Larsen
    Posted August 3, 2013 at 5:20 am | Permalink

    Hear, hear! I agree with every word. It is always encouraging to read your essays, Greg.

  5. Lucian Tudor
    Posted August 3, 2013 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    Greg Johnson, I generally agree with you in terms of the essential idea, but I do not agree with your word choice. What you are arguing is that white nationalism or racial values should be the guiding values of our society, not particular religious groups. However, I am not sure if it is a good idea to refer to this as a “civil religion” simply because it might give many people the wrong idea (nevermind the issue of defining religion; since I prefer to define true religion in terms of belief in a transcendent Sacred). Perhaps it would be better simply to refer to it as the guiding value or highest idea or something similar, since you are basically you are basically arguing for merely a secular state with a dominant worldview.

    • Greg P.
      Posted August 3, 2013 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

      Good point. I was just thinking of that when I was mowing the lawn. Though it is “only semantics,” it does actually matter. Words matter. The connotations of “religion” and saying we are establishing a new one will cause needless resistance whereas liberal universalism never openly competed with the established, exoteric religion of Christianity.

  6. Thomas Orecchia
    Posted August 3, 2013 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    Outstanding article! Again Greg, with beautiful simplicity and clarity to the question, defines the problem of Universalism, as it exists within Liberalism, the monotheistic religions and Communism and then provides us with what; ideally, a White society can do, in the religious/spiritual sense, to return to a flourishing self-promoting and preserving existence.

    As a common man reader of this forum I must say I best like these types of studies which focus on the question of “where do we go from here” and what needs to be accomplished to get there.

    Sempre Avanti!

  7. Crowley
    Posted August 3, 2013 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

    “If a common religion preserves the unity of a society, whence the religious pluralism of modern Western societies? There are essentially two explanations. First, the pluralism could be illusory. Second, the unity could be illusory or transitory. Both are true of the West.”

    We ethnic Europeans have a natural tendency toward pluralism, especially in matters of spirituality. It is part of our essence. Polytheism is natural to us. There must be many cults and individuals must be allowed freedom of choice between cults, just so long as respect is paid to the ultimate unifying cult, the cult of the emperor in antiquity and the cult of our essence, our heritage, our DNA in the language of today.

  8. Donar van Holland
    Posted August 3, 2013 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    Chapeau, Greg!

  9. Andrew
    Posted August 3, 2013 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

    This is a good article and I agree that it is important to place race at the top of a society’s hierarchy of concerns. I have a couple of quibbles:

    “Religion, on this view, is inherently communal and inherently ritualistic. But it is not inherently theistic or supernatural.”

    Theoretically, perhaps. But I am unaware of ANY lasting community, tribe, civilization or political entity throughout history (from what we know of the last 30,000 years of human existence) that lacked a theistic/supernatural-based religion. Modern atheistic societies are new creations, experiments in progress that have an indeterminate (and generally unpromising) future. European atheistic nations do not reproduce themselves and are clearly in decay. Likewise with modern Asian societies that have abandoned the Gods. The universal existence of religion in society, observation of healthy individuals and brain research strongly suggest that theistic, supernatural spirituality is an integral part of the human organism, a human need that there is no substitute for. In my humble analysis, this is a significant blind spot in mainstream WN thinking, where otherwise gifted WN thinkers engage in a modern version of Lamarckism, abandoning the principles of evolutionary psychology to arrive at a desired conclusion.

    “the real history of Christendom — if they read a history of the Albigensian Crusade, the Thirty Years’ War, or the English Civil War, for instance — most of them would reject a real Christian restoration in horror.”

    These events were indeed ugly, but it should be noted that much of that was naked military expansion with religion given as a cover/excuse, as opposed to an honest desire by decision-makers to strictly follow biblical teachings. A better way to examine the value of Christianity would be to examine how generations and generations of devout European families earned their livelihood, raised their families and dealt with hardships and tragedies for over a dozen centuries, with Christianity as a fundamental and constant part of their daily activities. That being said, true Christianity was never meant to be a hippie love-fest, it was supposed to be a balance between the new and old testaments, between loving thy neighbor and a holy war against the heathen in a hard world, as typified by the activities of the Teutonic Knights.

    • Stronza
      Posted August 4, 2013 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

      Would you also say, Andrew, that unity also means having a commonly held creation myth? It seems to me that the origins of the universe, the making of order from chaos, establishing light & dark from no light and no dark, etc. are ultimately not truly comprehendable, not as long as we have ordinary, standard-issue brains – our and everyone else’s ancestors knew this. So we have all these beautiful stories. Let’s have one, too.

      • Stronza
        Posted August 4, 2013 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

        P.S. “In the Beginning” (King James version) works not too bad for me. Shucks, it’s gorgeous. The big bang theory just doesn’t cut it (though it’s not a simple either/or matter, I know).

        [i]And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.

        And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,

        And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.[/i]

  10. Fourmyle of Ceres
    Posted August 4, 2013 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

    John deNugent is working on this same idea. By merging the best practices of his ideas, perhaps some ideas from Kevin Alfred Strom, and using the examples of the Mormon Church, Roman Catholicism, and the Jehovah’s Witnesses, we might make serious headway on this.

    Again, my contribution: keep the first ten chapters of Genesis, the Universal Story of The Fall, keep the Gospels, keep the Book of Revelation.

    Harold Covington said if he had it to do over, he would have started with a church.

    It will, however, take money, given to counter-currents each and every month.

    • rhondda
      Posted August 4, 2013 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

      I am curious to know just why the Third Reich did not like Jehovah Witnesses. Wikipedia says that they were as totalitarian as the Nazis and therefore a threat. They refused to swear allegiance to the the Third Reich. The ones I have encountered are the most irrational people I have ever met. The word ‘reason’ does not enter their psyches at all. They excommunicate their own children over minor infractions and cause major psychological damage. Then these people are let loose on the rest of society.

      • Greg Johnson
        Posted August 4, 2013 at 11:07 pm | Permalink

        I don’t think there was anything more than what Wikipedia says to it.

  11. Pelican
    Posted August 5, 2013 at 10:21 pm | Permalink

    The Arya were, if nothing else, great proponents of spiritual transcendence. Vedic thought, if nothing else, teaches strategies and techniques for achieving unity with the Divine. The starkest contrasts of the Judaic/Aryan dichotomy appear when comparing their respective religious outlooks.

    To use a chess analogy, it is generally advisable to stick with one’s opening. Europe, until recent centuries, was ever deeply religious, first as believers in oftentimes little known (or totally unknown) “pagan” belief systems and, more recently, as Catholics. I would argue that valuing transcendence as the paramount aim is an essential component of nobility. I would further argue that the venom diplayed toward Europeans (particularly white men) — a venom which has driven Europe to the brink of extinction — is due to conscious and subconscious recognition on the part of our enemies (let’s call them Universalist Liberals) that we are repositories of the tiny remnants of nobility they so despise and fear.

    It seems to me the most effective antidote to modernity is the continuing revival of our great religions. (Nasr, for example, has pointed out that heaven is so merciful, that several salvific pathways exist, complete with initiatic rituals, to assist in the tasks of transcendence.) Let powerful saints appear with increasing regularity, let Europe truly grasp the insane outcomes guaranteed by unbridled materialism, let European men find strength in fellowship, in chastity, and in cultivating lives of virtue, let holy men lead by example, and the worm will turn. By the power of heaven, the worm will turn.

    I dare not speak for Jesus, but I do have a difficult time imagining that he is even remotely involved in the demise of Europe. Europeans lost their way and wander about, forlorn and frustrated, and they have lost their way in no small part because they preferred gizmos and money to families and friends, they beheaded their divine kings and installed “da peoples’ revolutionary tribunals”, or some such nonsense, they developed a love of irreverent humor, so called, tolerated, oftentimes even encouraged, the corruption of youth and embraced a wide array of other unfortunate behaviors, sins, failings and beliefs.

    We know it’s the Kali Yuga, perhaps, and the metaphysical antennae don’t work very well and all that jazz, but sometimes enough can be enough even while moping about at the nadir. We need to crack out the holy books, get back to our churches and become what we were destined to be. No shortcuts, in my view.

    • Greg Johnson
      Posted August 6, 2013 at 1:36 am | Permalink

      Given the choice between as restoration of Christendom and the present Liberal Universalist order, I would choose the latter hands down. I am grateful for the labors of those who freed the West of Christian religious domination and established religious tolerance, secular reason as the ideal language of public discourse, etc. In my book, the primary failure of Enlightenment liberalism is that it did not sufficiently emancipate itself from Christian values and Christian escatological wishful thinking.

  12. Stronza
    Posted August 6, 2013 at 12:49 am | Permalink

    Some of you might find this article relevant. It’s entitled “Secular Traditionalism” and it’s at:

  13. Pelican
    Posted August 6, 2013 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    When I advocated picking up the holy books and getting our backsides into the churches, I did not mean to limit our choices exclusively to Christian ones. Chinese, Vedic, Egyptian, Greek and Islamic sources represent other avenues for studying spiritual wisdom. (As an aside, there are some interesting recent studies which indicate the Homeric sagas are best viewed as religious tomes.) Schuon’s “transcendent unity of religions” is a notion I have come to accept and, as I alluded to in the previous post, and as Nasr pointed out, the mercy of heaven is so great that it has provided several efficacious paths for our use.
    I do hold, however, that Catholicism (Orthodox and Roman) is definitely a living tradition that provides a legitimate and practical vehicle for achieving transcendence (sainthood). It has been under relentless attack since the time of Christ. Witness, as just one example, the recent Protestant revolutions which undermined the Guild System and many things besides. The Church no longer ensures just wages, fair pricing, and quality craftsmanship. Instead, Protestant Capitalism conjures up the Law of Supply and Demand, enlightened self-interest and other ludicrous abstractions which offer just the opposite effects.
    And here is my paragraph which boils down to “history is bunk”. I can add two things: my testimony that it truly is bunk; and a wonderful defense of mediaevilism in the first page or two of Fulcanelli’s “Les Demeures Philosophales”: See, (By all means should one read the entire book and his “Mystery of the Cathedrals” as well, for alchemy provides, among other things, an interesting window onto the past. But the opening pargraphs are relevant to this post.) “Lapidary humanity” is very good evidence that pre-Enlightenment Europe did pretty well for itself. And one can gauge the merits of post-Enlightenment Europe for oneself, by just having a little look.
    When I studied Alchemy, I obtained palpable proof that the old authors had better writing and thinking skills than we moderns. We like to pretend that the contemporary philosophers we find at Barnes and Noble are on a par with Hegel and Plato, that we have evolved into better human specimens than those represented by our ancestors, and that old-fashioned eschatological concepts like unification with the Godhead arose because of ignorance of science, superstitious fear of thunder, death, the unknown, the ____ (fill in the blank), weakness of character, or an unconscious need to deny the horrors of disease and death. Especially in the wake of recent evidence that humanity’s fall from previous levels of intellectual ability is accelerating noticeably, I intend to continue to ignore the belchings of modernity and go with the ancestors. And, to paraphrase an author of a recently written book on alchemy, to buy an agate mortar.

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