Will Spengler Ride Again? By James Reed
Being a collapse theorist, in an amateur way, I like a bit of Spengler in the morning, which gives me the pretence of being an intellectual. So, I got out my pipe, put on my smoking jacket, and sunk back into the old armchair to read the latest Spenglerian discourse about the new culture that will arise from the ashes of the decadent West. Sure, assuming that a thousand other things do not polish off the remnant. But, always look on the bright side of life as Monty the Python told us.
“In a previous article, I explained how it has become undeniable that America has died in spirit. But the flip side of such a gloomy outlook is actually quite cheerful. We cannot save “our nation” if we mean the old United States, but we can save “our nation” if we mean to shelter, guide, and nurture the beginning of a new nation that is completely different from the old in its essence, even if it may entail some external trappings from the old world.
I believe that we on the Dissident Right, along with eugenic “normies,” are not just a new nation, but the progenitors of an entirely new cultural/civilizational cycle as described by Oswald Spengler. This makes us the first men of the first nation of an entirely brand-new culture. It’s a daunting prospect, but one that we can face with a “brave optimism” that is free from cowardice if we approach it with a realistic outlook and with a focus on long-term success rather than the turbulent ups and downs of the short term.
I remember seeing a flier from Identity Evropa which contained the lines “Our generation, our future, our last chance.” That flier has turned out to be true, but not in the way many had hoped. The Alt Right, with its millennial idealism and synergy with Trump’s 2016 campaign, was our last chance to save the old Faustian West. The zoomers are too nihilistic, ironic, and burnt out, and to their credit they must operate under a soft totalitarian state which came about as a consequence of their elders’ decadence. But all is not lost, for the chill of Faustian civilization’s deep winter precedes the strident spring of a new culture, and the death of the America spawned in 1776 is necessary for a more virile America to arise.
A brief overview of Spengler’s historical cycles might be helpful. Cultures are based upon a “world feeling” which is a sense of space and time. This world feeling then drives everything else in that culture, from math to art. Civilizations are cultures that have become old and rigid. Cultures usually encompass several sub-units; for example, Athens and Rome were both part of the broader Apollonian culture that was based on a sense of perfect bodies. Egyptian culture was based on a sense of a procession through time, the Middle Eastern Magian culture is based on a duality of spirit and body as well as a sense of the world of a cavern, while Western/Faustian culture is based on a yearning for infinite space.
What might this coming culture’s world feeling be? My guess is that it will be based on a sense of time as a cycle, with cycles within cycles. While most other cultures had a cyclical sense of time, it was still not their world feeling. Spengler proclaimed that Faustian civilization was the first to achieve a bird’s-eye view of history, and would likely be the last. I disagree, as his ideas have filtered down to the rank and file of our movement, even if only on the level of memes. Of course, a world feeling does not come from intellect and books, as intellect rules late-stage civilization, while the spring of a culture is an instinct arising from blood. I suspect that Spengler was more than just the prophet of Faustian civilization’s fall, but also the first prophet of a new culture. He even predicted that the next cultures would be born in America and Russia. It is fitting to name the hypothetical new culture that is germinating in America the Spenglerian culture in his honor.
Let’s examine some of the characteristics of this Spenglerian culture. It will have a sense that everything has a place, because a cyclical view lends itself to seeing that most things have a time, which naturally also means a place. It will also be entirely comfortable with the reality that life is unfair, that men are not born equal, and that even if they were, equal outcomes are neither possible or desirable. The men of this culture will hear as much joy as sorrow in Carl Orff’s “Oh Fortuna,” if not more. They will sense that if sorrow is ever the afterpart of joy, then the opposite must also be true. To use military parlance, this culture will know how to “embrace the suck” and laugh at it.
This means that the West’s grand moralizing crusades such as Prohibition and Black Lives Matter will never come about in this culture. All of these silly moral crusades aimed at completely eradicating some perceived ill that was unique to the Faustian culture as such a crusade extend morals into infinity no matter the cost, until nobody ever drinks a drop of alcohol or commits any act of racism ever again. Spenglerian culture will have the wisdom to understand that even some vices have a place. There will always be seedy parts of town which serve to corral certain behaviors and persons, as trying to eradicate them only backfires and ironically allows them to spread. And if it is understood that individuals, like nations and cultures, must ride the wheel of fortune, then utopian visions that try to perfect society so that nothing bad ever happens to anyone will never be able to take hold. The common people would find such utopias and crusades to be inherently repulsive, even if they cannot fully articulate why.
Spenglerian culture will also be marked by balance and sustainability — but in actuality, unlike the fake environmentalists of the current day who use sustainability as a buzzword to advance the Great Reset agenda. This inherent instinct will be further honed by practical necessity, because by the time that Spenglerian culture ascends, Faustian civilization … will have wrecked a great deal of the planet in both its beauty and resources. Being in its youth, Spenglerian culture will have the creativity to find ways to become sustainable. Even apart from greed and controlled opposition, attempts at sustainability under the sway of Faustian civilization are doomed to fail because such attempts are inimical to its yearning for infinity in all things to include infinite growth and exploitation, and because civilizations in their winters are senile and not creative. Guillaume Faye’s book Archeofuturism offers some insights into how a synthesis of technology and traditional living could achieve sustainability, but I suspect that our descendants will find ways that would pleasantly surprise even him. Nuclear energy, despite being Faustian in essence, will most likely be well incorporated into efforts at sustainability because it is ironically the “greenest” energy option available.
Spengler predicted that some technologies would be used less or even lost because they were so tied up with the Faustian world feeling, such as electricity. I disagree about electricity, as it is useful, and through nuclear energy can be made mostly sustainable. However, it is likely that at least some technologies will be lost or regress in sophistication, as they do not correspond to the Spenglerian world feeling and thus will not be as intuitive to future scientists. Take how the US Air Force today has to reverse engineer some of its B-2 stealth bomber parts. While diversity and dumbing down probably has something to do with it, a subtler reason contributing in the background might be how the desire to propel forward into infinite space has finally burnt out in the modern Western scientist, even among the white and German ones.
One technology that will probably be lost is that of modern health care. This profane mix of mad science experiments aiming to prolong the body’s existence for as long as possible is inherently Faustian and the antithesis of a Spenglerian sense that all things, even death, have their appointed time and place. This rejection of modern health care will be even further exacerbated by memories of the transgender industrial complex and COVID hysteria. Future medicine will likely be holistic and focused on a healthy diet and exercise, with medical procedures reserved for broken bones and the like. Strong taboos will likely arise against progressing further in these matters beyond basic surgery and natural medicines.
Another technology that might be used less is cell phones, as cellular communication allows communication to conquer infinite space in a few seconds, and so is uniquely Faustian in nature. A Spenglerian man would sense that there is a time for communication and a time for silence. He would not need constant, real-time updates from Internet friends, and even less from employers. We may already be seeing the genesis of a distaste for cellular technology in the extravagant BitChute fairy tales about 5G making people sick. Regardless of the scientific truth about 5G, the masses have hit on an important truth in their subconscious which they are struggling to articulate in their conscious minds. 5G, and really all cellular technology, does make us sick — but it is a spiritual sickness. We need only look at the whores of OnlyFans and Tinder to see this. Other examples are children developing developmental problems from too much screen time, and the generic negative effects of social media. Social media is Faustian, as it is a projection of the self into infinite space at the cost of dissolving oneself into that space, and so the Spenglerians will probably see social media as an unappealing chore.
The new culture will also have little interest in designing complex legal and political systems, even in its latter stages of development. A cyclical view accepts that circumstances change, and so any man-made law except for the most basic will eventually become unjust, or at least impractical. Their legal and political battles will be focused on culture, tradition, and concrete effects more than abstractions. The Spenglerians will probably look back on Faustian legalism and constitution-building as ridiculous. Why should a statute last any longer than a sand castle? Why build a complicated system of checks and balances that can always be subverted instead of inculcating virtues that can survive the ups and downs of politics? What is the commerce clause compared to national honor? A seasonal culture will know deep reverence for the dead, as death is part of the cycle of human life, but it will never accept nor even comprehend le mortmain, the tyranny of the dead over the living, and especially in the handing down of convoluted constitutions.
Assuming it exists, what exactly is the current state of the Spenglerian culture? The only place it can fit within Spengler’s system is in the earliest days of its pre-cultural period. This would be analogous to the Mycenean age for the Apollonian culture and the “dark age” Franks before Charlemagne for the Faustian. This is the time of tribes and chieftains and is devoid of high politics. This is also the spring when foundational myths are formed, such as Homeric heroes for the Apollonian and saintly hagiographies and knights’ tales for the Faustian.
Much of this myth-building is yet to come, and yet I suspect that some foundations are already being laid down. The interwar writers could very well become exalted as something along the lines of great prophets and myth-makers, with Spengler at the forefront. Of course, the common man of Spenglerian culture and especially in its early phases will only have a meme-level understanding of the great interwar writers, but that is perfectly fine, as the level of memes has usually been the level of understanding of the common folk. This meme understanding does not prevent them from experiencing a world that is full of meaning, and perhaps even enhances meaning, as it avoids over-intellectualism. A higher understanding which most people would find boring anyway can always be reserved for those who are interested in it.
Spengler wrote at great length about how world feeling affects a culture’s math, such as how fractions reflected the bodylines of the Apollonians, because those numbers always referred to a fraction of a real body, unlike Faustian decimals, which are abstract and can in theory go into infinity. I profess I have no clue of what a Spenglerian mathematics would look like, but music is adjacent to math, and we may already be seeing a hint of Spenglerian influence there. Consider how phonk, a type of music based on car culture, is extremely repetitive — some prime examples are “Phonky Town” by Playaphonk and “Never Existed” by Lxst Cxntury. The lyrics are mumbled and almost impossible to discern, usually accompanied by a heavy beat, although some phonk music is smoother. Some critics might charge that phonk’s repetitiveness reflects the lack of imagination evident in soulless pop music, but I would argue that this repetitiveness is indicative of a Spenglerian sense of cycles. The repetitiveness actually enhances what little change does occur in a phonk song, as it stands out more. Martial industrial music shares the same creative repetitiveness and is still generally liked by the movement. Martial industrial and phonk are in part appealing because their aggression serves as an alternative to the sissy pop music of the current year, but might some of their appeal also be driven by how they speak to the world feeling of a new culture?
Spenglerian culture will also be strongly influenced by the pseudomorphosis that it is undergoing. A pseudomorphosis in geology is when one mineral forms naturally but then breaks apart, leaving a cavity. A second mineral then forms in its place, but instead of having its own geometric form that reflects its atomic makeup, it is forced to assume the form of the first mineral (petrified wood is a common type of pseudomorphosis). Spengler observed that the Magian culture developed for centuries under the dominance of the Apollonian culture, with Christianity as one expression of the Magian soul having to assume the outward forms of late-stage Greco-Roman paganism to find acceptance. When Magian culture finally asserted its true form through Islam, it did so violently, because its energy had been pent up for centuries and was unable to find authentic expression. This explains Islam’s rapid militaristic expansion and its extreme iconoclasm, which at its core was a hatred for the Apollonian reverence for perfect bodies — not because the Magian world feeling was particularly opposed to the Apollonian world feeling more than other cultures per se, but because it had to live under the shadow of a burnt-out Apollonian empire.
Like the Magians, Spenglerian culture is forced into an awkward pseudomorphosis by having to live under the dominance of the Faustian culture and conform to its outward forms, which does not suit it any more than its underlying values. For all our talk of being Faustian, is that world feeling really ours? Our political and cultural expressions are expected to conform to those of the Enlightenment, specifically those of 1776, which was an example of late-stage Faustian civilization taken to an unhealthy extreme, as evidenced by the American Revolution’s foundation on utopianism, hyper-individualism, rationalism, and supposedly eternal and universal principles — which for whatever reason scarcely existed before the Enlightenment. 1776 still speaks to the boomers and libertarians, but not to the movement — beyond gun rights and free speech, which are inherent to European blood, anyway.
What does speak to us is the Confederacy and, optics be damned, the Axis powers. The Confederacy was an agricultural country and thus closer to the cycles of the natural world, in contrast to the North with its Faustian industrialization and frantic exploitation. What if the American Civil War was not about muh slavery of the liberals or muh states’ rights of the classical liberals, but rather of an initial clash between Spenglerian and Faustian culture? While both the Axis and Allies relied heavily on industrialization, the Axis pursued quality and the Allies quantity. Japan created elegant battleships such as the Yamato that were destroyed by mass-produced bombers, and the Germans marvelous but impractical Tiger tanks that were outmatched by the inferior but numerically superior American Sherman tanks. The Axis pursuit of quality which was oftentimes so impractical as to suggest an inner compulsion reflecting a tendency towards hierarchy, and thus a more traditional world feeling, which while not particularly Spenglerian is still at odds with the Faustian world feeling. The Communists and capitalists of the Allies did what they do best in war, culture, and economics: drown quality in a tide of mass-produced quantity that is spawned by the Faustian tendency towards infinite production, consumption, and growth.
What this means is that the American Civil War and the Second World War may end up as foundational myths for the coming Spenglerian culture. The Dissident Right’s veneration of the Confederacy and the Axis powers is not to be seen as “edgy” or contrarian, although a lot of individuals certainly enjoy being edgy and contrarian. This veneration at its root is driven by the fact that we share a common Spenglerian world feeling with them. We should not nostalgically lament Dixie as “gone with the wind,” but seek to propel it forward to rise as the first nation of a new culture. These great wars are already being mythologized in our minds, and our descendants will likely look at them as their Iliad and Aeneid. The Second World War was the Europe’s “last battle,” but also the first battle of a new nation that will likely arise from the detritus of the United States in a modern version of translatio imperii, similar to how the flame of Rome passed to the Holy Roman Empire and how that flame was originally carried to Rome from the ashes of Troy. If this happens, it will also make it likelier that the interwar authors will be revered as prophets, as discussed above.
What will religion in the Spenglerian culture be like? That it will be religious is undeniable, as all cultures have a strong religious impulse in their youth, and this religious impulse will be further enhanced by how atheists are culling themselves through disproportionally low birthrates. It is likely that Christianity will be the dominant religion based on current trends, which is interesting, as this will be the fourth culture that Christianity will have lived in. A mystical Catholicism is likely to be the dominant sect, although it will by necessity have to break from the Catholic Church’s globalism and liberalism and declare itself the true Church, with the old Church seen as a heresiarchy, much as the rise of a Faustian/Gothic Christianity drove the Great Schism between the West and the Magian East. It is unlikely that outright reincarnation would be adopted in this Spenglerian Christianity, as it is too much against the black-letter word of the Bible. It will have to express the cyclical world feeling another way, perhaps in seeing history as Herodotus did in his account of the Greco-Persian Wars — that is, as driven by an invariable rise and fall of nations according to God’s will, with nations dramatically falling a step away from achieving total dominion because they overextend and become blinded by pride. This would make the Spenglerians fiercely nationalistic but averse to imperialism.
This new religion, even if it denied being a new religion, would invariably need to address Nietzsche’s criticisms. The harsh lessons that meekness is a recipe for slavery, that physical strength and beauty correlate with virtue, and that there is such a thing as too much peace and love will overshadow the early Spenglerians to such an extent that it will be impossible to ignore them. Their religion might incorporate this through the doctrine that there is a time and place for everything, combined with Aristotle’s Golden Mean. It is likely that a prophet-like figure will emerge who can translate Christianity into the Spenglerian culture, either through the logic of theology or perhaps by proclaiming a new revelation, as the Book of Mormon does. Machiavelli dreamed of a virile, heroic Catholicism, and it is likely that his dream will be realized by the Spenglerians, and he could even be rediscovered as a prophet.
When and how this Spenglerian culture will assert itself remains to be seen, but it is likely going to be through a collection of towns, counties, and states that go deep “red” as America continues to balkanize. This will resemble the scattered tribes or small city-states of other cultures’ early periods. There will likely be three major regional identities based on the South, the Rocky Mountains, and the Midwest/Appalachia, much as the early Greeks were divided among Dorians, Ionians, Achaeans, and Aeolians, but still shared a common identity. There will probably not be a glorious secession all at once, but a gradual, passive aggressive secession as central authority collapses, similar to the disintegration of Western Rome.
This leads to practical advice: If we are looking at such a gradual reorganization, it is unwise to burn out in a blaze of glory, giving oneself wholly over to the movement in expectation of a quick victory. Endurance is the name of the game. Now is a great time for young white men to quietly form Männerbünde in the shadow of the decaying empire, much like the early Franks.
Building a dissident high culture, along with a low culture, will help us add both new elites and normies to our nation. Many normies are apolitical not from a lack of virility, but from an overabundance of it that has no interest in movement drama, “incels,” the GOP, grifting, or the asocial weirdos who were tolerated in the past simply because they had the right opinions. These virile normies are prime recruits who will coalesce with us through culture first and politics, second.
The first nation of the Spenglerian culture will have to be built from the ground up. While there might be no political solution, politics can still play a role in the solution. State and even national politics are still useful for protecting white resources from exploitation by enemy tribes, promoting tribalist identity politics, and delegitimizing the regime. We may do the same thing, but how we do it will change, as we will have a different why for doing it. And while running for city council may not be glorious, it will probably be a more effective option for most of us. High politics and state-building comes later in a culture’s lifecycle.
There is a tendency in the movement to declare that everyone must pack up and leave for some specific place or else hide in the woods. I partially disagree, as moving across the country is easier said than done in a bad economy, and because balkanization is happening across a number of states, counties, cities, and even neighborhoods. We have a large number of attractive options. Furthermore, isolation makes one an easy target to destroy in detail. A large variety of strong networks, communities, districts, and even states are what we should focus on building, as together they will have the strength to weather the storm of a collapsing civilization.
And eventually, whatever we manage to build or preserve are like seeds that will one day coalesce and bloom into the garden of a new nation.”