Eurasianism

Aleksandr Dugin’s Foundations of Geopolitics

One perceptive observer of the Russian political scene, Francoise Thom, noted as far back as 1994 that fascism, and especially its “Eurasianist” variant, was already at that time displacing Russian nationalism among statist Russian elites as a post-communist “Russian Idea,” especially in the foreign policy sphere.  “The weakness of Russian nationalists,” she emphasized, “stems from their inability to clearly situate Russian frontiers.  Euras[ianism] brings an ideological foundation for post-Soviet imperialism.”
There has probably not been another book published in Russia during the post-communist period which has exerted an influence on Russian military, police, and statist foreign policy elites comparable to that of Aleksandr Dugin’s 1997 neo-fascist treatise, Foundations of Geopolitics.3

The impact of this intended “Eurasianist” textbook on key elements among Russian elites testifies to the worrisome rise of fascist ideas and sentiments during the late Yeltsin and the Putin periods.

The Prophet of the New Russian Empire

On June 5, 2007, the Ukrainian government declared Russian intellectual Aleksandr Dugin persona non grata and banned him from entering the country for a period of five years. This exceptional decision was motivated by a series of inflammatory remarks made by Dugin and his followers about Russia’s various pro-Western neighbors, the Ukraine foremost among them. It was not long, however, before Kiev retracted its decision, fearing further deterioration in its relationship with the superpower to the east. Dugin, after all, is not merely a philosopher. He has influential friends in the Russian presidential cabinet and is associated with many leading politicians, as well as prominent academics and celebrities. And indeed, Ukrainian apprehension was justified by the events that followed: That very evening, Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykola Zhulynsky and his family, who had arrived in St. Petersburg to visit the graves of their relatives, were deported by the Russian government. This retaliation had no mitigating effects on Dugin’s aggressive public campaign against the Ukraine. On October 12, activists from Dugin’s International Eurasian Movement sawed through the country’s national emblem—a statue of a trident situated on Mount Hoverla—and announced that they had thus "castrated” the Ukraine of its sovereignty. Following this ostentatious act of vandalism, Dugin was again banned from entering the Ukraine. This did not, however, prove to be the end of the affair. Authorities in Moscow were quick to show their support for the provocative thinker, and promptly deported Ukrainian political analyst Sergei Taran. The Russian Foreign Ministry left no doubt about Moscow’s motivations when it announced that Taran’s expulsion was a direct response to the Ukrainian ban.

When Russian Eurasianism Meets Turkey’s Eurasia

This is the story of an idea. The political concept of Eurasia, or “Eurasianism,” refers to the spiritual linking of the European and Asian peoples in the history and future of Russia. The idea behind the Eurasia movement derives from the works of Prince N. S. Trubetskoi, P. N. Savitski, G. V. Vernadski, and several others. Trubetskoi believed that the inter- connection of Eastern Slavs and the Turkic and Uralo-Altaic steppe peoples — or Turanian peoples — is one of the main building blocks of Russian history. In the 1920s, this theoretical concept found many followers among Russian émigrés dispersed in Poland, Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Germany, France, and Czechoslovakia who were searching for a new theory to combat the ideological thrust of the Marxist- Leninist revolution in Russia. A small “Eurasianists” movement developed, yet Eurasianism put down only weak roots and rapidly declined.

Neo-Eurasianism, inspired by the earlier movement, gained traction and considerable popularity in Russia during the years leading up to and following the collapse of the Soviet Union. Lev Gumilev, often cited as the founder of the Neo-Eurasianist move- ment, developed a theory of ethno- genesis holding that the peoples of the Eurasian steppe included not just the Russians but also the Turkic peoples of Central Asia. Gumilev regarded Russians as a “super-ethnos” kindred to Turkic peoples of the Eurasian steppe, including the Tatars, Kazakhs, and even the Chingizid Mongolians. With this theoretical synthesis, Gumilev and his followers concluded that Russia is not a natural part of “the West,” that it is instead culturally closer to Asia than to Western Europe. Neo-Euransianism thus resonates with many Russian intellectuals and politicians who fear the West and are divorced from its values.

From Sacred Geography to Geopolitics

Geopolitics in its present form is undoubtedly a worldly, “profane”, secularized science. But maybe, among all modern sciences, it saved in itself the greatest connection with Tradition and traditional sciences. René Guénon said that modern chemistry is the outcome of the desacralization of a traditional science — alchemy, as modern physics is of magic. Exactly in the same way one might say that modern geopolitics is the product of the laicizing and desacralizing of another traditional science — sacred geography. But since geopolitics holds a special place among modern sciences, and it is often ranked as a “pseudo-science”, its profanizing is not so accomplished and irreversible, as in the case of chemistry or physics. The connection with sacred geography here is rather distinctly visible. Therefore it is possible to say that geopolitics stands in an intermediate place between traditional science (sacred geography) and profane science.

 

The two primary concepts of geopolitics are land and sea. Just these two elements —Earth and Water — lie at the roots of human qualitative representation of earthly space. Through the experience of land and sea, earth and water, man enters into contact with the fundamental aspects of his existence. Land is stability, gravity, fixity, space as such. Water is mobility, softness, dynamics, time.

These two elements are in essence the most obvious display of the material nature of the world. They stand outside of man: everything is heavy and fluid. They are also inside him: body and blood. (The same happens also at a cellular level.)

The Secret of Eurasia: The Key to Hidden History and World Events

Have secret societies and occult brotherhoods been active behind the scenes of world events for thousands of years? Do these guardians of secret wisdom shape the growth of human consciousness and influence the destiny of nations? Are hidden masters of occult knowledge empowering and infiltrating certain political, cultural, spiritual and economic movements, in fulfilment of an ancient plan? Could it be that man’s great upheavals, wars, and revolutions, as well as his pioneering discoveries in science, literature, philosophy and the arts, are the result of a ‘hidden hand’? Can we decode history and find the mysterious interface between politics and occultism, thereby uncovering the real movers and shakers in our modern world?

The Dark Side of Globalization

 As a whole, the process of globalization is very abstract, and so requires an assessment from within and between various discrete fields of the social sciences.  David Harvey notes that “…if the word ‘globalization’ signifies anything about our recent historical geography, it is most likely to be a new phase of exactly the same underlying process of the capitalist production of space". Anthony G. McGrew , a professor of International Relations at Southampton University, describes globalization as “a process which generates flows and connections, not simply across nation-states and national territorial boundaries, but between global regions, continents and civilizations. This invites a definition of globalization as: ‘an historical process which engenders a significant shift in the spatial reach of networks and systems of social relations to transcontinental or interregional patterns of human organization, activity and the exercise of power”.

Russia, Japan, China, and the Resistance to Modernity:Eurasianism and Pan-Asianism Revisited

In the 1920s, Russian Eurasianists as well as some Japanese philosophers try to organize a cultural stronghold able to serve as an orientation mark to “second rate” nations. The result is an autonomous intellectual tradition that leaves behind the dichotomy of particularism and universalism. Also in China, the interest in Asian cultural geography led Chinese intellectuals to an awareness of global space that they had to put in relation with the historical space of China. However, criticism of modernization in Japan and Russia, instead of questioning the idea of modernization as such, tends to deal with the quality of modernization. The article examines the consequences that these movements might have for the contemporary situation.

In the 1920s, Russian Eurasianists as well as some Japanese philosophers try to organize a cultural stronghold able to serve as an orientation mark to “second rate” nations. The result is an autonomous intellectual tradition that leaves behind the dichotomy of particularism and universalism. Also in China, the interest in Asian cultural geography led Chinese intellectuals to an awareness of global space that they had to put in relation with the historical space of China. However, criticism of modernization in Japan and Russia, instead of questioning the idea of modernization as such, tends to deal with the quality of modernization. The article examines the consequences that these movements might have for the contemporary situation.

The West should be rejected

1.The human world is not one (Modern-Western) civilization as universal one and example of the development to all other, but rich variety  of civilizations, cultures, religions, ethnics and societies. Each one of them has absolute right of stay what it is or change at its own will in any direction. No society can judge another society because there is no common measure. Any judgment of the sort will be necessarily ethnocentric. The is only one universal think - total absence of any universality (concerning human society).

2. So we need to construct multipolar world where the Western (and North American) society will be one possibility among many other (and not common destiny).

3. The Russia is not a country like Germany or Italy, o Greece. It is something more. It is civilization on its own. It is cultural, geopolitical, historical and social pole of the human world charged with the mission. The Russia in not part of the West nor East. It is completely aside. To understand Russia we should compare it with Europe as whole or with Islamic civilization, or with chinese civilization.

THE EURASIST VISION

Against the establishing of the atlantist world order and globalisation stand the supporters of the multi-polar world – the eurasists. The eurasists defend on principle the necessity to preserve the existence of every people on earth, the blossoming variety of cultures and religious traditions, the unquestionable right of the peoples to independently choose their path of historical development. The eurasists greet the generality of cultures and systems of values, the open dialogue among peoples and civilizations, the organic combination between the devotion to traditions and the creative impulse. 
Eurasists are not only the representatives of the peoples living in the Eurasian continent. Being eurasist is a conscious choice, which means combining the aspiration to preserve the traditional forms of life with the aspiration to free creative (social and personal) development. 
In this way, eurasists are all free creative personalities who acknowledge the values of tradition; among them are also the representatives of those region which objectively form the bases of atlantism. 
Eurasists and atlantists are opposed to each other in everything. They defend two different, alternative, mutually excluding images of the world and its future. It is the opposition between eurasists and atlantists which defines the historical outline of the XXI century. 

MILESTONES OF EURASISM

There are no universal patterns of development. The plurality of landscapes on Earth produces a plurality of cultures, each one having its own cycles, internal criteria and logics. Geographical space has a huge (sometimes decisive) influence on peoples’ culture and national history. Every people, as long as it develops within some given geographical environment, elaborates its own national, ethical, juridical, linguistic, ritual, economic and political forms. The “place” where any people or state “development” happens predetermines to a great extent the path and sense of this “development” – up to the point when the two elements became one. It is impossible to separate history from spatial conditions, and the analysis of civilizations must proceed not only along the temporal axis (“before”, “after”, “development” or “non-development”, and so on) as also along the spatial axis (“east”, “west”, “steppe”, “mountains” and so on). 
No single state or region has the right to pretend to be the standard for all the rest. Every people has its own pattern of development, its own “times”, its own “rationality”, and deserves to be understood and evaluated according to its own internal criteria. 
The climate of Europe, the small extension of its spaces, the influence of its landscapes generated the peculiarity of the European civilization, where the influences of the wood (northern Europe) and of the coast (Mediterraneum) prevail. Different landscapes generated different kinds of civilizations: the boundless steppes generated the nomad empires (from the Scythians to the Turks), the loess lands the Chinese one, the mountain islands the Japanese one, the union of steppe and woods the Russian-Eurasian one. The mark of landscape lives in the whole history of each one of these civilizations, and cannot be either separated form them or suppressed. 

MAIN PRINCIPLES OF EURASIST POLICY

 

The first pattern represents the inertial cliché of the Soviet (mainly later Soviet) period. It has somehow taken roots in the psychology of some Russian managing systems, often unconsciously, pushing them into adopting such or such decision on the basis of the precedents. This pattern is supported with the “relevant” argument: «It worked earlier, it will work also now». It concerns not only those political leaders who consciously exploit the nostalgic complex of the Russian citizens. The Soviet reference pattern is much wider and deeper than the structures of the KPFR [Communist Party of the Russian Federation], which now stands at the rim of  executive power, far from the decisional centres. Everywhere politicians and officials, formally not identifying themselves in any way with communism, are guided by it. It is an effect of education, life experience, formation. In order to understand the substance of the undergoing processes in Russian politics, it is necessary to admit this “unconscious sovietism”. The second pattern is the liberal-democrat, pro-American one. It started taking shape with the beginning of “perestroyka” and became some kind of dominant ideology in the first half of the 1990s. As a rule, the so-called liberal-reformers and the political forces close to them identify themselves with it. This pattern is based on choosing as system of reading of the American socio-political device, copying it on the Russian ground and following US national interests in international issues. Such pattern has the advantage to allow to lean on the quite real “foreign present”, as against the virtual “domestic past” around which the first pattern gravitates. The argument here too is rather simple: «It works for them, it will work for us too». Here it is important to stress that we are not simply talking about “foreign experience”, but about the orientation towards the US, as to the flagship of the successful Western capitalist world.

 

EURASIAN IDEA AND POSTMODERNISM

Almost all religions and traditions claim – globalization, “new world order” , “unipolar world”, “world cabinet” – are symbols of Lucifer , strategic constructions of “God enemies” – Archangel Michael`s direct enemies. Christians identify this “new world order” as “antichrist”, muslims as “dadjallah”, judes – “great melting” (“erev rav”), hinduists – as forces of Kali Juga, Buddhists – Mara, demon of illusion.v On the other side of all differences between doctrines, rituals and dogmata exists special tradition – tradition of Archangel Michael, “michaelic” veiled light. It is affiliation of human to “hierohistory”, right (and obligation) to be a soldier of one of the two opposing armies.

Eurasian idea in its highest sense – projection of michaelic, vertical outtime pillar of light on history in its final stage of redemption.

Archangel Michael is often pictured with a sword in one hand and with scales in another. Scales mean justice. German philosopher M. Haidegger in his “Holzwege” analyzed very important for us poem of Rhien Maria Rilke. It was about “handing over the scales from merchant to Archangel”.

Eurasian Path

 In contrast to the absolutization of the liberal pattern laying at the economic base of the «new world order», the Eurasist Project supposes the reference to a wide spectrum of the socially oriented patterns of a social system, which can be sometimes globally called as «socialism» or «socially oriented community». The social environment is the natural habitat of the man, and in his basic features man is defined just as in relation to a definite community. As against dogmatical Marxism, this community can be understood in very different ways —as a cultural type, as community collective unconscious, as ethnic identity, as religious faith, as a social-historical formation, as a class-professional belonging etc. All these social features can be taken into account in a common summary pattern, which, conditionally, it is possible to call as the «eurasist socialism», free from the dogmatists, creative, open, incorporating both traditional forms of social identification and new social forms growing in modern conditions. The social feature of Eurasism does not exclude at all the value of the  individual, and the more so it does not reject some definite elements of market management. It is a common spirit, a priority attitude toward the social system, where in the economic, social, scientific and political areas the models based on the principle of the general social subject are encouraged, and the major basic instance is the organic collective of an old or new kind. 

The Eurasian Idea

The Eurasian Idea represents a fundamental revision of the political, ideological, ethnic, and religious history of mankind, and it offers a new system of classification and categories that will overcome standard cliches. The Eurasian theory went through two stages - a formational period of classical Eurasianism at the beginning of the XX century by Russian emigrant intellectuals (Trubeckoy, Savickiy, Alekseev, Suvchinckiy, Iljin, Bromberg, Hara-Davan etc.) followed by the historical works of Leonid Gumilev and, finally, the constitution of neo-Eurasianism (second half of 1980's to the present).

EURASIAN COMMON HOUSE

Continent Eurasia – cradle of human culture and civilization. Eurasian continent gave birth to different social, spiritual and political forms that constitute major substance of human history. Eurasia is dipolar. It is possessed of Europe and Asia, West end East. Human history is subsequent dialogue, dialectic energy, value and technology exchange between these two poles that lasts more than thousand years.

East and West supplement each other

Eurasia has been crossed from West to East and back by nations and civilizations. Hordes of modern Europeans far ancestors had been crossing Asian deserts and at the same time civilizations of China, India and Persia flourished with advanced philosophy, technology and life comfort. Each culture has its own historical timing, different from any other.

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