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Miscellanea
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Rene Guenon (1886-1951) is undoubtedly one of the luminaries of the twentieth century, whose critique of the modern world has stood fast against the shifting sands of recent philosophies. His oeuvre of 26 volumes is providential for the modern seeker: pointing ceaselessly to the perennial wisdom found in past cultures ranging from the Shamanistic to the Indian and Chinese, the Hellenic and Judaic, the Christian and Islamic, and including also Alchemy, Hermeticism, and other esoteric currents, at the same time it directs the reader to the deepest level of religious praxis, emphasizing the need for affiliation with a revealed tradition even while acknowledging the final identity of all spiritual paths as they approach the summit of spiritual realization. Miscellanea gathers together for Anglophone readers various articles by Rene Guenon and by 'Palingenius', his pseudonym during the time of La Gnose, a journal he founded in 1909. These articles have been divided into three categories: 'Metaphysics and Cosmology', 'Traditional Arts and Sciences', and 'Some Modern Errors'. A sampling of chapters: 'Monotheism and Angelology'; 'Spirit and Intellect'; 'Silence and Solitude'; 'The Empiricism of the Ancients'; 'Gnosis and the Spiritist Schools'; 'The Origins of Mormonism', 'On the Production of Numbers', 'On Mathematical Notation'; 'Initiation and the Crafts'; and 'The Arts & their Traditional Conception'. In the latter two chapters the author explains why initiation became necessary in the measure that humanity receded from the 'primordial state', explaining the reasons for the degeneration of the arts and crafts due to the 'fall' or descending trajectory of the present cycle. He nonetheless points out the possibility of an initiation into the 'lesser mysteries' based upon the craft of building which still exists validly in the West.

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