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Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Evola, symbology, and alchemy

A new article by Hans Thomas Hakl, “The Symbology of Hermeticism in the Work of Julius Evola” (in Lux in Tenebris: The Visual and the Symbolic in Western Esotericism, ed. Peter J. Forshaw, Leiden: Brill 2016), discusses Evola’s understanding of symbols, notably in the context of alchemy, and Evola’s La Tradizione Ermetica (The Hermetic Tradition, 1931).

Hakl looks in detail at the meaning of particular symbols, especially the Monas Hieroglyphica, showing in this instance how Evola drew on Cesare della Riviera (d. 1625) and thus, indirectly, on John Dee (1527-1608). He argues that it is important to remember that Evola’s work on the symbology of hermeticism “was written neither as a scholar nor as a practical alchemist… but purely and simply to demonstrate the ‘truth’ of his Traditional worldview.” For Evola, alchemy was a universal system, a point on which René Guénon disagreed.

Lux in Tenebris is published by Brill, and so sells for $202 (or €168). This may seem expensive, but there are also some other chapters that mention Traditionalism in passing: György E. Szönyi on “Myth and Magic: Victorian Enoch and Historical Contexts,” Aaron Cheak on “The Juncture of Transcendence and Concretion: Symbolique in René Schwaller de Lubicz,” and Joscelyn Godwin on “Esoteric Theories of Color.”

1 comment:

Alice said...

This may seem expensive

Typical English understatement.