Alain de Benoist

Alain de Benoist. Spiritual Authority & Temporal Power

Three authors considered as outstanding representatives of “traditionalist thought” turned their attention to the same doctrinal question. In 1929, René Guénon released a work entitled Autorité spirituelle et pouvoir temporal published by J. Vrin.[1] That same year, Julius Evola answered him with an article bearing the same title that appeared in the Italian journal Krur.[2] Finally, in 1942, Ananda K.

Alain De Benoist: the Decay of Modern Society

Peaceful modern societies which respect the individual evolved from age-old familistic ties. The transition from band-type societies, through clan and tribal organizations, into nation-states was peaceful only when accomplished without disruption of the basic ties which link the individual to the larger society by a sense of a common history, culture and kinship. The sense of “belonging” to a nation by virtue of such shared ties promotes cooperation, altruism and respect for other members. In modern times, traditional ties have been weakened by the rise of mass societies and rapid global communication, factors which bring with them rapid social change and new philosophies which deny the significance of the sense of nationhood, and emphasize individualism and individualistic goals. The cohesion of societies has consequently been threatened, and replaced by multicultural and multi-ethnic societies and the overwhelming sense of lost identity in the mass global society in which Western man, at least, has come to conceive himself as belonging.

Alain de Benoist Critique of Liberal Ideology

From time immemorial, to be human meant to be affirmed both as a person and as a social being: the individual dimension and the collective dimension are not identical, but are inseparable. In the holist view, man develops himself on the basis of what he inherits and in reference to his social-historical context. It is to this model, which is the most common model in history, that individualism, which one must regard as a peculiarity of Western history, directly comes to be opposed.

In the modern sense of the term, individualism is the philosophy that regards the individual as the only reality and takes him as the principle of every evaluation. The individual is considered in himself, in abstraction from his social or cultural context. While holism expresses or justifies existing society in reference to values that are inherited, passed on, and shared—i.e., in the last analysis, in reference to society itself—individualism establishes its values independently of society as it finds it. This is why it does not recognize the autonomous status of communities, peoples, cultures, or nations. For it sees these entities as nothing but sums of individual atoms, which alone have value.