Thursday, November 10, 2022

Dugin removed from Amazon US

If you want to buy a book by the Russian Traditionalist (or post-Traditionalist) Alexander Dugin, do not go to Amazon.com. They have vanished, apparently because of US sanctions against Dugin. However, you can still buy Dugin at Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.de.

Thanks for this information to Tucker Carlson of Fox News (see photo). Carlson, a prominent "conservative" American journalist, does not approve of the way that "the Biden administration is demanding Amazon censor books they disagree with." For Carlson, "Dugin is one of Russia's most famous authors and political philosophers." The US government has to right to censor books, and is behaving a bit like the Ukrainian government, which murdered Dugin's daughter because "she said the wrong thing." Read more here, and watch the video (spoiler: Carlson cannot pronounce Dugin's name).

Wednesday, November 09, 2022

Aguéli book now available in paperback

René Guénon
was initiated into Sufism in 1910 by Ivan Aguéli (Abd al-Hadi), who was also influential in the very earliest development of Traditionalism. The 2021 collection on Aguéli, Anarchist, Artist, Sufi: The Politics, Painting, and Esotericism of Ivan Aguéli, was originally published in hardback and priced for library sales, but is now available in paperback at the more reasonable price of $39.95/£28.99, with a further discount if bought direct from the publisher, Bloomsbury, at www.bloomsbury.com.

Monday, October 03, 2022

Interesting Traditionalist conference

An interesting Traditionalist conference is currently underway at the University of Notre Dame, entitled “Converging Wisdom? Questioning the Continued Relevance of the Perennial Philosophy” (October 2, 2022 – October 4, 2022). The keynote is by Seyyed Hossein Nasr, on “What is Perennial Philosophy and Why is it Significant Today?” The most prominent speaker, then, does see the Perennial Philosophy as still relevant, as do many other speakers. 

The schedule is available here, and the speakers include both prominent members of the Maryamiyya and other notable Traditionalists, and perhaps even a few scholars who are not Traditionalists, though I am not sure of that. It was possible to register to follow the conferecne online, and registration still seems to be open.

Thanks to C for bringing this conference to my attention.

Thursday, August 04, 2022

New article on Traditionalism in South America

A new article, Mark Sedgwick, "The Glocalization of Esotericism: Guénonian Traditionalism in South America" has been published in Nova Religio 26, no. 1, pp. 35-58, https://doi.org/10.1525/nr.2022.26.1.35. It brings together three earlier articles on South America. It is aimed at readers interested in religious studes who do not know Traditionalism. The abstract is:
This article traces the history of the South American reception of the work of the esoteric philosophers René Guénon and Julius Evola, and of the Maryami Sufi Order of Frithjof Schuon, focusing on Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Peru. It compares South American forms of Traditionalism with those found elsewhere, primarily in Europe and North America, understanding differences between these in terms of “glocalization,” the local adaptation of the global. Traditionalism in South America was most localized in its religio-political form, which was more important for the Right in South America than elsewhere, and least localized in its purely religious form, which was less significant in South America than elsewhere. The impact of Traditionalism in South American academia, notably in philosophy and anthropology, also reflects local conditions, as does an unusual interest in indigenous peoples.

Thursday, July 14, 2022

Maude Murray’s book

The autobiography of a former leading Maryami, Maude Murray, was published in 2021 by Beacon Books, an Islamic publisher in Oldham, England, as Third Wife of the Muslim Shaykh Frithjof Schuon: My Lifelong Search for Truth. Following threats of legal action, and possibly some actual litigation, it was withdrawn and has not been reissued, though a pdf of the proof is currently available on Google Drive here.

The book is extremely critical of Murray's former husband Frithjof Schuon, following the same line taken by Murray in her YouTube video (here) and on her website (here). It consists of 31 relatively short chapters that cover four phases in Murray’s life: (1) youth and encounter with Traditionalism (chapters 1 to 5); (2) the extended Schuon family in Lausanne (chapters 6 to 9); (3) the Bloomington community (chapters 10 to 19); and (4) Murray’s subsequent life, including reflections on earlier events (chapters 20 to 31). Murray becomes Schuon’s third wife during phase 2, and the relationship ends during phase 3.

The book is a valuable primary source for the history of the Maryamiyya, but not always an easy one. The chapters covering the first two phases are quite well written, in a pleasant, rather chatty style with occasional repetitions and digressions. Murray, it seems, was generally happy during these phases of her life, and reports them happily enough. The picture they paint is believable, and is not contradicted by anything we know from any other source. Phase 3 begins much as phase 2 ends, but the narrative then becomes increasingly hard to follow, as Murray becomes more unhappy and troubled. This is understandable—she was not having an easy time at all towards the end of the Bloomington period—but somewhat reduces the empirical value of the account.

Third Wife, then, is strongly recommended as a source—to be taken, like all sources, along with other evidence—and somewhat less strongly recommended for other purposes. Casual readers may find themselves skipping a bit after half-way through.