Editor’s note: One of the bothering aspects in some quarters of white nationalism is the claim about ‘pagan Christianity’ in contrast to a toxic ‘Judeo Christianity’. In fact, ‘pagan Christianity’ only exists in the mind of those nationalists unwilling to reject the storythat is killing us.
A couple of years ago, under the title of ‘A New Religion For Us’, Kevin Alfred Strom reproduced Savitri Devi’s ‘National Socialism and Neo-Paganism’ in five parts. Below I reproduce the first instalmentwithout his introduction; Devi’s endnotes, or the excellent audio reading of the text, embedded in Strom’s post, by Vanessa Neubauer.
Pay special attention to the sentence ‘Germany cannot be rebuilt on this lie’, which I would paraphrase as ‘the US cannot be rebuilt on this lie’ (Christianity). As long as American white nationalists insist on behaving like an impossible chimera between Christianity and racial preservationtheir movement won’t fly. Devi wrote:
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An entirely new culture can hardly be conceived among people who retain the same religion as before. The Programme proclaimed at Hofbräuhaus states, it is true, that “the Party as such stands for a positiveChristianity.” But, as I have said before—and as all the most intelligent National Socialists I met have admitted to me—it was well-nigh impossible, in 1920, to say anything else, if one hoped at all to gather a following. And it also remains true that the very fact of replacing, as we did, the link of common faith by the link of common blood—the creedal conception of community by the racial one—is contrary to the spirit of Christianity, no less than to its practice, always and everywhere, up to this day. It remains true, in other words, that if whatever religion that is “a danger to the national State” is to be banned, then, Christianity must go—for nothing is more incompatible with the fundamental principles upon which rests the whole structure of any National State.
However, apart from the fact that this could not be saidin a political programme in 1920—or even in 1933—it could still less be donein a day. Christianity could not be too openly and too bitterly opposed, before the National Socialist philosophy of life had become widely accepted as a matter of course; before it had firmly taken root in the subconscious reactions of the German people, if not also of many foreign Aryans, so as to buttress the growth of the new—or rather of the eternal—religious conception which naturally goes hand in hand with it. Until then, it would have been premature to suppress the Christian faith radically, however obsolete it might appear to many of us. “A politician,” our Führer has said, “must estimate the value of a religion not so much in connection with the faults inherent in it, as in relation to the advantages of a substitute which may be manifestly better. But until some such substitute appears, only fools and criminals will destroy what is there, on the spot.”
One had to prepare the ground slowly, by creating anew a thoroughly Aryan soul in the young people, through their whole education; and, at the same time—for the elder folk—by giving a precise meaning (as National Socialistic as possible) to the expression “positiveChristianity.” That is what Alfred Rosenberg has endeavoured to do in his famous book, The Myth of the Twentieth Century. His “positive Christianity” is something indeed very different from the Christianity of any Church, nay, from the Christianity of the Bible, based as it is solely upon Rosenberg’s interpretation of what is obviously the least Jewish in the New Testament and upon Rosenberg’s own National Socialist philosophy. The Christians themselves soon discovered that it was no Christianity at all. And of all the prominent men of the Party, Alfred Rosenberg is surely the one whom they dislike the most to this day—although they are probably wrong in doing so, for there were and still are National Socialist thinkers far more radical than he. And he was, moreover, far too much a theoretician to be a real danger to the power of the Churches.
But it is certain that, under all this talk about “positive Christianity,” there was, from the beginning, in every thoughtful National Socialist, the feeling that Germany in particular and the Aryan world at large need a new religious consciousness, entirely different from and, in many ways, in vigorous contrast to the Christian one; nay, that such a consciousness isalready lurking in the general discontent, disquiet, and scepticism of the modern Aryan, and that the National Socialist movement must sooner or later help it to awake and to express itself. Although he too speaks of “positive Christianity” and insists on the fact that “nothing is further removed from the intentions of the NSDAP than to attack the Christian religion and its worthy servants”; and although he is very careful to separate the Movement from every endeavour to revive the old Germanic cult of Wotan, Gottfried Feder cannot help mentioning that slowly rising new consciousness, and “the questions, the hopes, and the wishes whether the German people will, one day, find a new form by which to express their knowledge of God and religious life,” if only to say that such questions, hopes, etc. are “far beyond the frame even of such a revolutionary programme as the one National Socialism proclaims.”
And it is no less certain that, although no attempt was ever made officially to overthrow the power of the Churches and to forbid the teaching of the Christian doctrine, books inspired through and through, not by the desire to revive any particular Cult of old—that of Wotan or any other God—but by the love and spirit of eternal Nordic Heathendom, some of which are exceedingly beautiful, were published under the Third Reich, and read, and sympathetically commented upon in National Socialist circles; and that this was the first time that the real Heathen soul of the North—the undying Aryan soul—fully realised, after nearly fifteen hundred years, that it is alive; more so, that it is immortal, invincible. I have already quoted Heinrich Himmler’s short but splendid book, The Voice of the Ancestors, that masterful condensation of our philosophy in thirty-seven pages, which only an out-and-out Pagan could write. It contains, among other things, a bitter criticism of the Christian attitude to life—meekness, self-abnegation, delectation in the feeling of guilt and misery; “aspiration towards the dust”—and, in opposition to it, a profession of faith of the proud and of the strong and free: “We do not exhibit our faults to anyone, we Heathens—least of all to God. We keep quiet about them; and try to make good for our mistakes.”
Of the many other books of similar inspiration, I shall recall only two far less well-known than Alfred Rosenberg’s famous Mythus but, I must say, far more radical, and deserving undoubtedly more, both the pious hatred that so many Christians of all persuasions waste upon that work and the wholehearted admiration and gratitude of all real modern Heathens: one is Ernst Bergmann’s Twenty-Five Theses of the German Religion, and the other, Johann von Leers’ History on a Racial Basis. There, the incompatibility of the National Socialist view of life and the Christian is shown as clearly, once for all, as any uncompromising devotee of either of the two philosophies could desire:
A people that has returned to its blood and soil, and that has realised the danger of international Jewry, can no longer tolerate a religion which makes the Scriptures of the Jews the basis of its Gospel. Germany cannot be rebuilt on this lie. We must base ourselves on the Holy Scriptures which are clearly written in German hearts. Our cry is: “Away with Rome and Jerusalem! Back to our native German faith in present-day form! What is sacred in our home, what is eternal in our people, what is divine, is what we want to build.”
And Thesis Two of the Twenty-Five Theses—the number seems to have been chosen to match the Twenty-Five Points of the National Socialist Party Programme, so as to show that the “new” (or rather eternal) “German religion” is ultimately inseparable from the creation in Germany of a true National State—the second “thesis,” I say, states that the German religion is “the form of faith appropriate to ourage which we Germans would have today, if it had been granted to us to have our native German faith developed, undisturbed, to the present time.” As for Christianity, it is frankly called “an unhealthy and unnatural religion, which arose two thousand years ago among sick, exhausted, and despairing men, who had lost their belief in life,” in a word, exactly the contrary of what the German people (or, by the way, anyAryan people) need today.
I do not remember any writer having more strongly and decisively pointed out the contrast between the everlasting Aryan spirit and that of Christianity and, especially, having more clearly stressed the nature of the Aryan religion of the future. There is no question of reviving the Wotan cult, or any other national form of worship from Antiquity, as it was then. The wheel of evolution never turns backwards. The religion of resurrected Germany can only be that which would have beenflourishing today, as the natural product of evolution of the old Nordic worship, had not “that Frankish murderer Karl,” as Professor Bergmann calls Charlemagne, destroyed the free expression of German faith and forced Christianity upon the Germanic race by fire and sword, in the eighth and ninth centuries; or rather, had not Rome herself fallen prey to what her early emperors called “the new superstition,” introduced by the Jews. And what can be said of the new German religion is no less true of the desirable new religion of every regenerate Aryan people, organised under a real national State.
The only international religion—if such a thing is to exist at all—should be the extremely broad and simple Religion of Life, which contains and dominates all national cults and clashes with none (provided they be true cults of the people, and not priestly distortions of such); the spontaneous worship of warmth and light—of the Life energy—which is not the natural religion of man alone, but that of all living creatures, to the extent of their consciousness. In fact, all the national religions should help to bring men to that supreme worship of the Godhead inLife; for nowhere for nowhere can Divinity be collectively experienced better than in the consciousness of race and soil. And no religion definitely stamped with local characteristics, geographical or racial, should ever become international. When such a one does—as Christianity did; as Islam did—the result is the cultural enslavement of many races to the spirit of that one whence the religion sprang, or through which it first grew to prominence. An Indian Muslim, to the extent he is thoroughly Muslim, is outside the pale of Indian civilisation. And, to the extent he accepts Christianity, a European accepts the bondage of Jewish thought. And a Northern European, to the extent he accepts Christianity, and especially Catholicism, accepts, in addition to that, the bondage of Rome. Germany, the first Aryan nation that has rebelled on a grand scale against the Jewish yoke—cultural, no less than economical—is also the first Nordic nation to have shaken off, partly at least, in the sixteenth century, the less foreign (while Aryan) but still foreign bondage of Rome. Nothing shows better the spirit of the religious revolution—of the religious liberation—slowly preparing itself under the influence of National Socialism, than the outcry of Ernst Bergmann which I have quoted above: “Away with Rome and Jerusalem! Back to our native German faith in its present-day form!”