One of the sicknesses which contaminates European occult groups is what is known as the Evola Virus. Named after the extreme right wing occultist and favorite of Mussolini, Julius Evola of the same name, it is based on a fantasy that occultists will make the best world rulers.
It actually reached its peak with the Synarchist movement in France, whose leaders included the anti-sematic martinist Papus at the turn of the 20th century and appears to have been a motivating factor in the Nazi collaboration government of Marshal Philippe Pétain’s regime (1940-44). On paper these ideas look reasonable but in practise they are universally fascist, favour things like eugenics and the weeding out of races which are deemed inferior.
Normally such types claim that that their inspiration comes from reading Plato’s Republic and they claim that their ideas are true neo-platonic occultism.
In The Republic the political structure of Plato’s created an ideal Polis (or city state) establishes a society in a hierarchy of three socio-political groupings: Hoi Polloi (the many – the agricultural, production and manufacturing class); Hoi Epikouroi (the Auxiliaries – the military, policing and administrative class); and Hoi Phylakes (the Guardians – the ruling class).
Gifted children could advance into the senior classes and non-gifted children could move to more “appropriate” class. The system though hierarchical was not a rigid stratification and allowed for those who showed ability rise.
The system was based on the division of labour, and a tripartite division of the human psyche into the elements of appetite, passion and reason which mirror the three classes of the ideal society.
Occultists, of course consider themselves by nature to be the Hoi Phylakes after all they do all the serious thinking into the nature of the universe – something that Plato should have approved.
But there are several things wrong with Plato’s ideal world. Firstly (although never mentioned) it requires an underclass of slaves to do all the things that even the Hoi Polloi would not do. But mostly it comprises of separate socio-political groupings, and not of individuals. One of the central patterns of magical thought is that the individual and its destiny are the most important thing. An individual might exist within the context of a society and help it, but the moment a class is defined, individuality is tossed out the window.
The needs of any State are going to be against the odds of an individual at some time – even the most enlightened. A true individual must find him or herself at odds with the society they are in and suddenly the ideal state will not be that for an individual.
The next issue is that truly enlightened interests are often going to be at odds with the short or long term needs of the Republic. For example, it is enlightened to free slaves, but if your economy is based on slavery, it is going to suffer. It is enlightened not to go to war or kill another human, but for the good of the state sometimes, it is necessary.
The last and more important thing is what makes occultists think that they are remotely enlightened enough to be in the Hoi Phylakes in the first place? Plato talks of philosopher kings, working in agreement, but if you put the top occultists in a room you might (at best) be able to stop them arguing but you are never going to reach any agreement. Closer to what Plato suggests is a collection of academics (although I am told they have the same problem).
Plato failed to factor in human nature into his equations and that makes the whole thing come unstuck. What would happen, as did happen with Fascism and Communism is that the system swiftly calcified and the people at the top were not the enlightened, but those most committed to the regime. To such people occultists will always be outsiders – individuals who are troublemakers, who believe that they can change the universe with their will.
Plato also seemed to lean this way with the only society which adopted his ideal that of Atlantis becoming calcified and arrogant and being whipped out by the Gods.