there are many cases of people who are exactly of the same race of the body, of the same tribe, sometimes even, brothers or fathers and sons, of the same blood in the most real sense, but who nevertheless fail to understand each other. A barrier separates their souls, their way of feeling and seeing is different, and the common race of the body and common blood can do nothing about that. A possibility of comprehension exists, and therefore of true solidarity, of deep unity, only where a common “race of the soul” exists.
Since man is an ensouled body, his outward physical characteristics, or race of the body, are insufficient to determine him. That is, the body is neither a chunk of matter, nor an animal, so DNA will fail to define him. Keep in mind that by “race”, Evola does not mean it how it is understood in the USA, with its emotionally charged history of slavery, apartheid, and civil rights. Rather, it is much more specific, so he can speak of a Nordic race, an Italic race, and so on. This is more obvious in languages like Italian or German, since the word for “race” in those languages is also used to refer to “breeds” of animals.
Applying phenomenology to the experience of race, we see, as did Evola, that sharp and deep divisions separate even those of the same physical race. These are not merely accidental qualities, but are constitutive of the person. These divisions often make mutual intelligibility impossible, without the effort to transcend such differences on a higher plane. There are two all too obvious consequences to this. First of all, any attempt to appeal to some racial solidarity of the first level will necessarily fail. Secondly, these divisions at the soul level will not be resolved by discussions or “debates”. Fabre d’Olivet confirms this:
Nature does not make men equal; souls differ still more than bodies.
From the esoteric perspective, what is of interest is why people hold certain views, not the views themselves. For example, a convinced materialist or atheist holds his view with a passionate intensity, since he is unable to conceive of, or experience interiorly, any other possibility that makes sense to him. Bracketing out for the moment the possibility of a spiritual or intellectual conversion, people remain locked into certain fixed patterns of soul life.
Evola also provides a different understanding of “purity”. Physical purity is impossible, or at least, undesirable. There is a small, but not negligible, mutation rate in any population. Since most mutations are deleterious, an endogamous population will decline over the centuries. Purity, then, can only mean the adequation of corporeal and psychic qualities. Thus for example, on the one hand he can praise certain Nordic qualities, while also mentioning the degeneration of the Nordic race. Note that these qualities are all on the plane of the soul and spirit, not the body.
The takeaway is that successful movements depend on a core group of “like-minded” people, if that is your goal; great leaders instinctively understand this. As Evola explains,
A possibility of comprehension, and therefore of true solidarity, of deep unity, exists only where a common “race of the soul” exists.
For example, desirable qualities may include “calm and dominating superiority, solarity, sense of distance, active detachment”. Those that have such qualities actively can then identify those who may have them virtually. However, an indiscriminate mixing, a “big tent”, won’t come to much beyond putting some people in positions of power for its own sake. The telltale sign of degeneration is the failure to differentiate, which is also the hallmark of the Kali Yuga. Differentiation at the level of the soul is more important than the body. Evola concludes:
it may happen that a person gives us the clear impression by his way of acting that he “is of another race” and, then, there is no longer anything to do with him; relationships of a various nature can exist with him, but always with an inner reservation and inner distance. He “is no longer ours”.
A leader needs to make that determination. Of course, the most fundamental differentiation is that between a man and a woman, who relate to each other not just physically, but more importantly at the soul and spirit level. Nowadays, even that differentiation is losing force. Many, today, even fail to differentiate between humans and animals.
Aeneas has posted a new chapter from Sintesi; it will remain online for four days.