[I plan for this to be a nine-part series, rather than, as has been my custom, one lengthy post.]
Previously I argued that you need to be a traditionalist conservative. But how does a non-traditionalist become a traditionalist? This essay addresses the question.
Of course, this not a fully rational process. There is no tight recipe for repentance. But we need to talk about it.
In the previous essay I observed that contemporary thinking is fundamentally wrongheaded. As a result, contemporary societies are fundamentally unravelling and contemporary people (aside from those filled with the demonic energy of the liberal jihad) are spiritually and intellectually demoralized. What is the way out of the madness?
We must go back to first principles. The world is a God-given order which some have called the order of being, and you— know it or not—have a place in it. To restore sanity, people must come to know this order and their place in it.
But how do you come to know this order?
Through traditionalism. Traditionalism is more than tradition, for behind it, supporting it and giving it life, is the truth that tradition embodies. American traditionalism is therefore not just the traditional ways of our people, but the basic understanding of, and respect for, the order of being, coupled with a love of the traditions of our American people as unique expressions of this order.
So traditionalism is grounded in the order of being, the mostly-God-given order of the natural, social and divine worlds. This order exists even when man is not aware of it. But if you are unaware that reality has an order, and is not just naked unordered existence, you experience life as meaningless frustration punctuated by occasions of pleasure that do not satisfy. They do not satisfy because man was created to know the order of being and participate in it. If he does not participate in the true order his basic purpose is frustrated.
[To be sure, the liberals offer man a counterfeit order in the form of liberalism. They offer man meaning in the form of joining the great liberal jihad to spread Tolerance and Nonjugmentalism to all the world. But this does not count, for the religion is false]
Modern man, following the teachings of our leaders, sees himself as radically free from intellectual, moral, and religious authority. And yet if man is to participate in the life-giving order of being, he must give up this freedom and attach himself to an authority, a good authority.
To be an American traditionalist, then, is to know and participate in the order of being as it is uniquely expressed through the people and institutions of America. But how exactly does one become an American traditionalist?
First, know that contemporary America (at least the officially-defined America) is mostly hostile to the true order, and therefore to live well you must oppose the status quo.
And know that America is still your nation, despite her sins, and she is therefore still to be loved. A man cannot divorce his ancestors or his family. Therefore it is your duty to not to come to hate your nation because she has been corrupted, but rather to love her and do what you can to make her better.
Know, too, that love is not the same as approval. You will not love the poisonous just because it happens to be American poison. You will do what it takes to protect yourself and your family and friends from this poison.
Also know that your opposition to the spirit of the age must primarily be an inward attitude rather than outwardly successful rebellion. The current world system knows how to suppress insurrection, so if you judge success by outward standards, looking for the successful public institutionalization of traditionalist ways you will probably become demoralized. You must begin small, first by reclaiming your mind, and then by living more traditionally, along with a few others near you, if possible. One day, God willing, a better American social order will be reestablished. But this is not possible today.
[Part Two is here.]