Originally published in the Regime Fascista, 25 may, 1935, reading from Metaphysics of War: Battle, Victory and Death in the World of Tradition by Julius Evola, Arktos 2011
Forms is a guide to the basis of the warrior's role as it is rooted in traditional civilizations. Evola reminds the reader that a true caste system operates in life and is present in all civilizations. Students of Indian and medieval history will be familiar with these four castes:
1. Holy [transcendent]
2. Warrior [animal will]
3. Merchant [the vegetative life]
4. Slave [the physical element]
Human societies have devolved along these stages, with the divinely ordained hero king or priest king devolving in the late Middle Ages and early modern period to warrior kings ruling essentially secularized polities. These kings in turn come under control of the merchant class [bankers], with war now a business venture, and these in turn evolve into pure slave states in real or valuated terms.
As society becomes more collectivized and attuned to the materialism of the merchant and the pleasure seeking of the slave, the warrior descends, under these dehumanizing circumstances via three stages of spiritual diminishment as the "sterile" war without heroics looms:
1. "hero of supra-personhood" or transcendent [holy warrior, Gilgamesh]
2. "tragic" hero operating under a greater circumstance [warrior, Achilles]
3. "degraded" hero under the power of merchants and slaves [soldier, Sergeant York]
With the advent of machine warfare Evola states that the journey of the hero moves inward, to attain the survival of his humanity in the face of the vast impersonal forces beneath which he is embroiled.
Evola concludes that the hope of a fascist nation would be metaphysically tied to the reversal of the descent of the hero in three stages:
1. Scorn the merchant myth, resubjugate the merchant and slave classes and elevate the nation to a "warrior nation"
2. "to spiritualize the warrior principal" by elevating the soldier to warrior status
3. "to develop the heroic experience" making the holy warrior path truly open to
the reascendant hero, this being a matter to develope in future essays.
I would like to thank Mescaline Franklin for the loan of this wonderful book, which I intend to examine one chapter at a time as the second stage in developing the thesis that is A Dread Grace, so that I may embark on the examination of each warrior culture with a truer understanding of the warrior's place in society. Please keep in mind that I have presented Evola's essay according to my interpretation, to which some may object. The thing that rises most clearly from this essay is the ideal that there is a true hierarchy of men that morally supersedes the social hierarchy, and that in order for society to right its way the true hierarchy of deeds must be brought home by submitting the false material hierarchy so that the two are in sync.