(1954) Preface & Selected Passages from “The Millennial Glow: Myth and Magic in the Marxist Ethic”

NOTE: As a sample of Grady’s formal academic writing, the definitions of terms contained in this preface will shed light on the intellectual development of the founding master of Thelema Lodge. Grady’s analysis of Marxism as a system of magic was accepted by the University of California at Berkeley as a thesis for his Master of Arts degree in 1954.

Preface to “The Millennial Glow: Myth and Magic in the Marxist Ethic”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

This is a study of the universe of discourse of Marxism. It will be the purpose here to understand the Marxist as a committed person by analyzing the vocation required by Marxism of its adherents. It has often occurred to me, when I have had occasion to refer to Marxist literature, that I discerned an underlying pattern of thought that is perhaps more familiar to the student of anthropology, psychology, sociology or philosophy, than to the student of political science. I have, therefore, availed myself of this opportunity to explore Marxism as a universe of discourse, and only incidentally as a political philosophy per se. It is not until we understand how a person thinks that we are able to understand why he thinks and acts as he does. In this respect it has seemed to me that there is a striking resemblance between Marxism as a world-view and the myth, magic and ethic of the tribalistic universe of discourse. Therefore I shall apply the tribalistic frame of reference to Marxism in an attempt to understand how the Marxist thinks.

This, then, is a study of Marxism as an idea rather than of Marx as a person. Marx, after all, was not necessarily a Marxist as we understand the term, for the writings of Marx comprise only a small portion of the vast literature of Marxism, but Marxism as an idea has had a development and life of its own. Furthermore it should be understood that I am not asserting that an application of the epistemology of magic is the only way in which one can understand Marxism, but rather that this is one way of understanding Marxism. Equally I do not assert that a study of magic is to be applied only to Marxism, but it is with Marxism that we are here concerned.

In any exposition where technical terminology is extensively employed, it is perhaps best to pause a moment for clarification before plunging into the work at hand. What, after all, is meant by such words as “myth,” “magic,” “ethic,” “tribalism,” “rational,” “irrational,” and “universe of discourse”?

Myth. A myth is the statement of a closed system of reality. It may be as simple as a story or a legend or it may be so comprehensive that it includes the entire universe of discourse of a closed society. This latter is the distinguishing characteristic that will interest us most about myth, for no matter how limited or comprehensive its scope may be, a myth is a whole and attempts to explain or justify that which is comprehended only within its frame of reference. Viewed objectively, such an emphasis upon explanation only within one particular ideology, rationale, or tribal universe or discourse is irrational.

Magic. By magic I do not mean legerdemain. Magic is the control of things and events by a direct act of will on the part of the magician. Magic does not recognize knowledge as mediate, but only direct. Magic is operative only in a world of homoeopathy, i.e., where similarity is recognized as kinship, kinship is likeness, and likeness is affective, for magic is effective through being affective. Magic is a way of knowing and doing and a way of understanding the world in which we live. Magic knows and does by a direct act of will on the part of the person knowing and doing, and magic is understood by a magical myth which interprets the world in terms of the coercive relationship of the knower and the known.

Ethic. An ethic is a comprehensive statement concerning morality. Here we will be primarily concerned with the goal orientation of the Marxist ethic where the goal is the act of Revolution and its consequence, the millennium.
Tribalism. Tribalism is the way of life and manner of thinking of a closed social group, usually in a primitive or nomadic state, where authority rests in the office of chieftainship. “New” tribalism is the revival of this manner of thinking, way of grouping and means of acting, in modern politics.

Rational. The rational is a method of critical and calculated inquiry in which answers are on the basis of hypotheses subject to reasoned change, i.e., in which theories are open-ended to allow for the consideration of new empirical data, rather than closed by certain fixed preconceptions asserted dogmatically.

Irrational. That is irrational which asserts a closed system of truth. Such an assertion is irrational for two reasons. First, failure to allow for alternate means of inquiry is the opposite of the rational method. Second, irrationality arises from the assertion that all knowledge can be directed to conform to one and only one system of truth, for such an assertion is a magical act of will whereby the universe is ordered to accommodate itself to this one particular system. As such it is the positing of rationality in the will rather than in the intellect as a faculty of the mind. Closed systems of irrationality may be accepted a priori, as with tribal, provincial, or parochial universe of discourse, or they may be rationally contrived philosophic systems. It should be noted in this respect that our reference is not necessarily to any historical school known as “Rationalist” or “Irrationalist”, but only to rationalism and irrationalism as herein defined.

Universe of Discourse. A universe of discourse is that collection of facts and ideas which is tacitly implied or understood in a given statement or discussion. Such a collection of facts or ideas is usually held, and will be here held, to center around certain basic principles. Marxism is such a universe of discourse centering around the autogenetic movement of the Hegelian dialectic, the historical validation of the inclusive magical myth, the goal oriented ethic of the millennial act, and the charisma of the tribal magician.

The initial chapter of this paper is utilized in a dual capacity. First, it is used to project the hypothesis that one may meaningfully speak in terms of a magical universe of discourse and, second, by extracting the three salient characteristics of totemic tribalism it is used as an outline for the subsequent three chapters. The second chapter is concerned with the Marxist act, its millennium, and the goal oriented ethic it prescribes, the third chapter is concerned with the state of mind the Marxist brings to his vocation of leadership, and the fourth chapter is concerned with a detailed epistemological analysis of the magical tribal myth of the Marxist universe of discourse within which the ethic of the act and the charisma of the leader are comprehensible.

That the rational may exist within the irrational and that the irrational may be generated by the rational may seem strange to those who have been excessively impressed by the ease with which the methodology of symbol structure has clarified the routines of the physical universe. That this is really not so strange, however, should become apparent when we remember that

Nothing is more removed from actual events than the closed rational system.
Under certain circumstances, nothing contains more irrational drive than a fully
self-contained, intellectualistic world-view.1

China had a long tradition of bureaucracy and rationalism, yet its highest administrators were “magically endowed.” Nazi Germany was a bureaucratic state and rationally routinized to a high degree, yet it had a charismatic leadership.2 In the same way the Marxist ethic, when applied to a practical political situation, results in a monolithic bureaucracy ruled by a vocational elite whose claims of exclusive knowledge as to the working of the historical dialectic is to be understood only within the irrational world of the magic universe of discourse.3

Magic is the art of changing the world by a direct act of will. In this instance the will is the collective desire of the “masses,” or tribe, as directed by the hero of tribal magician. In this way the millennium is to be brought to birth. Acceptance of this point of view prescribes that the world so created, created both by the general “will” of the “masses” of people and the “act” or “will” of History, is the only right, just or moral world and therefore any device or means used to facilitate its inauguration is morally justified. This is the gate by which the idealist enters the closed moral world of Marxist tribalism. For if he can accept the belief that the world can be completely changed by a collective act of will, a belief which is rendered rationally plausible by the concept of the dialectic, and if he can identify himself with those who supposedly generate this mass movement then he can, as Silone says, participate in the process of “collective redemption.” He becomes a tribalist, a Koures, a member of a holistic group. He has cut himself off from the rest of the universe. He has pulled around himself a cloak of his collectivity and entered a closed system of rationality. And in this closed system he has a myth, his Marxist ideology, by which to rationalize its contradictions, for a myth is the rationale by which the world of magic is made morally justifiable and intellectually plausible.

We have discussed the act, or collective means of magical action that is confused and identified by the Marxists with the historical “act” of the dialectic, the man, or the embodiment of that means of action in a tribal hero or prophet of the dialectic, and tribalism, the antique manner of thinking in the ideological terms of myth that is the magical universe of discourse within which both of these operate. All three are necessary to produce the millennium of the Marxist ethic: the revolutionary act of the masses by which the world is transformed into the glow of a millennial dawn, the charismatic prophet who can divine the course of History and help bring it about by enunciating the doctrine of the future, and the comprehensive universe of discourse within which it can be made morally justifiable and intellectually plausible. In succeeding chapters we will deal with these . . .

1. Karl Mannheim, Ideology and Utopia, p. 197.
2. Franz Neumann, Behemoth (New York: Oxford, 1942), p. 81.
3. Mannheim, op. cit., p. 118.

Extract from “The Marxist Ethic”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

The world of magic is the world of mind. As Malinowski says:

Magic is based on specific experiences of emotional states in which man observes not nature but himself, in which the truth is revealed not by reason but by the play of emotions upon the human organism. Science is founded upon the conviction that experience, effort, and reason are valid; magic on the belief that hope cannot fail nor desire deceive. The theories of knowledge are dictated by logic, those of magic by the association of ideas under the influence of desire.1

That is why the world of magic is so “fluid”, mutable, plastic, or protean, why it is possible to create entire worlds of deductive articulation by definition, i.e., by a creative-coercive act of will, why its shapes shift so easily as they phase in and out of focus, why opposites can interpenetrate and quantities become qualities, why it flows in the ordered sequence of habit, ritual and tradition and why a change can be made and maintained only by the most rigorous concentration of will. And because it is the world of mind it is a dramatic world full of fantasy, terror, omnipotence and the stuff of dreams. And myth is the validation of magic.

The magician unconsciously assumes the fusion of power, quality, and object. But besides being a compulsive technique magic is in and of itself an aesthetic activity. Magic is immediately available to art, and art to magic . . . any narrative or poem which reaffirms the dynamism and vibrancy of the world, which fortifies the ego with the impression that there is a magically potent brilliancy or dramatic force in the world, can be called a myth . . . the whole groundwork of myth is magical; for the storyteller can compose myths about wonderfully potent animals and men who defy the laws of time and space, as well as the laws which limit the mutability of species, and still remain close to the confines of the psychology of magic. Magic . . . emphasizes the power of men as opposed to the power of the gods . . .2

1. Malinowski, “Magic, Science and Religion” (Boston: Beacon Press, 1948), p. 67.
2. Richard Chase, “Quest for Myth” (Baton Roughe: Louisiana State University Press, 1949), pp. 80-1; cf. Raymond Royce Willoughby, “Magic and Cognate Phenomena: An Hypothesis,” chapter 12 “A Handbook of Social Psychology,” Carl Murchison (ed.) (Worcester, Massachusetts: Clark University Press, 1935), passim.

Extract from “The Universe of the New Tribalism”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

It has been my suggestion throughout that Marxism as a way of thinking is totally alien to our modern Western forms of empiricism because it is a reversion to the primitive way of thought that is found in the animistic magic of prescientific totemic tribalism. I have also suggested, however, that magical thinking per se is not alien to the human mind, but, rather, is man’s oldest, earliest, and most natural way of thinking. Or as Malinowski says:

Magic is . . . akin to science in that it always has a definite aim intimately associated with human instincts, needs, and pursuits. The magic art is directed towards the attainment of practical ends; like any other art or craft it is also governed by theory, and by a system of principles which dictate the manner in which the act has to be performed in order to be effective.1

Thus we say that magic as a way of thinking does make sense, and very good sense, to the people who find a coherent explanation of the world in the terms of its universe of discourse. As a practical way of thinking it is definitely not nonsense, as we too often assume, or it could not have been, as Cassirer says, “the first school through which primitive man had to pass.”2 Taking the long view of historical perspective it is rather we, with our emphasis on the impersonal relationship of man and nature, who appear as exceptions to the rule and the question very readily presents itself as to whether or not we shall continue, in any measure large or small, to wield rational control of our destinies. Cassirer puts it this way:

The belief that man by the skillful use of magic formulae and rites can change the course of nature has prevailed for hundred and thousands of years in human history. In spite of all the inevitable frustrations and disappointments mankind still clung stubbornly, forcibly, and desperately to this belief. It is, therefore, not to be wondered at that in our political actions and our political thoughts magic still holds its ground.3

1 Bronislaw Malinowski, Myth in Primitive Psychology (New York: Norton, 1926), p. 82.
2 Ernst Cassirer, An Essay on Man (New Haven: Yale Univeristy Press, 1944), p. 92.
3 Ernest Cassirer, The Myth of the State (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1946), p. 295.

Extract from the section on “Myth” in “The Universe of the New Tribalism”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

Myth was defined in Chapter I as “the rationale by which the world of magic is made morally justifiable and intellectually plausible” because, as Cornford had been cited as saying, myth is “the statement of what is being done and willed,”1 i.e., “the verbal expression of the same emotion and desire” by which the magician seeks “the realization of the desired end in dramatic action” because “sympathetic magic consists in the representation of the object of passionate desire.” It should be noted, however, that any field of study has its verbal expression of the subject of consideration and that a scientific hypothesis, for example, is often mythical in that not all of its speculations may be immediately verifiable and, further, because it is a deliberate attempt to simplify the complexities of reality to make them amenable to the understanding. As a scientific hypothesis it is cast in the terms of the descriptive universe of discourse and does not try to compel the universe to do its bidding. The myth of the magical universe of discourse or, more properly, the magical myth, is cast in compulsive terms because it is the function of the magician to compel, to coerce, the will or wills confronting him, and in order for there to be wills to compel the universe of magic must be animistic. We will now attempt to analyze the epistemology of Marxism as a magical universe . . .

1. Francis M. Cornford, From Religion to Philosophy (London: Arnold, 1912) p. 139.

Extract from the section on “Magic” in “The Universe of the New Tribalism”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

The development of the life, i.e., movement or essence, of a thing, or phenomenon, by its inner contradictory tendencies (“All things come into being by conflict of opposites”,1 Heraclitus the Obscure), the knowing of the thing, appearance, process, by going from appearance to essence, and from less deep to deeper essence, the repetition of the lower (microcosm) in the higher (macrocosm), the negation of negation as an “apparent return to the old” (“the wheel of Nature revolveth constantly”), the struggle of content with form (shape-shifting and the fluid personality of mythology), everything is connected with every other (substance is extended), and the passing of quantity into quality (metamorphosis). The use of this language, this terminology, this universe of discourse so familiar to the student of myth in the Metamorphoses of Ovid, to the student of the esoteric in the Tao Teh King of Lao-tse, and to the student of the “occult” in the Tabula Smaragdina of Hermes Trismegistos, re-emphasizes the myth and magic in Marxism.

1. Milton C. Nahm, ed., Selections from Early Greek Philosophy (New York: F. S. Crofts & Co., 1945), p. 96

Another Extract from the section on “Magic” in “The Universe of the New Tribalism”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

. . . the chorus of the Greek drama (Jane E. Harrison, Themis, Cambridge: University Press, 1912, pp. x-xii.) is merely the vestigial dance of the Koures, and the leader of the chorus was originally the tribal magician who could coerce the forces of fertility in nature by bending this magical essence to his will, and will is


Magic . . . is briefly this: how can a desirable object be coerced?

— Paul Radin

All of the concepts of magic revolve around and return to the substance-essence dichotomy, the substance known that comprises the material of the universe and the equally material active, vital, essence intelligence that knows because, being of the same material, it can penetrate, by means of its activity, into the substance and thereby know it. But this substance is itself in motion, and the motion of substance generates a “will” or “god” (Thales: “All things are full of gods.”) or “power” or “force of nature” of “elemental force,” which is the “elemental” of demonology, and this “will,” which is nonvolitional or “blind,” as in the “windowless” monads of Leibniz, can also be penetrated or grasped and thereby directed or controlled by the active intelligence of essence. The developmental essence we were discussing in the last section is exactly this type of nonvolitional force. Or as Engles says:

. . . history makes itself in such a way that the final resultal ways arises from conflicts between many individual wills, of which each again has been made what it is by a host of particular conditions of life . . . . the historical event . . . may itself be viewed as the productof a power which, taken as a whole, works unconsciously and without volition.

— Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, Selected Correspondence, 1846-1895 (New York: International Publishers, 1942), p. 476.

This, of course, is merely an echo of Hegel. . .

A Third Extract from the section on “Magic” in “The Universe of the New Tribalism”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

. . . inner contradictions cause activity in the monad or, as Lenin says, there is a “struggle” of opposites. But there cannot be a “struggle” of any kind unless one or more wills, no matter how rudimentary or elementary or unconscious, are involved. Perhaps Catlin is right here when he says:

It may be that Hegel is a profounder interpreter of Hegelianism than Lenin. Will is assigned by Hegel a new and consistent role in relation to Environment, such as eliminates the Marxist contradiction between the all–importance of Economic or Material Environment (Marx–Kautsky) and the all–importance of Creative Will (Marx–Lenin).1

Lenin would certainly have contested the suggestion that his view of dialects differs from that of Hegel.

The division of the One and the Knowledge of its contradictory parts is the essence (one of the “essential” aspects of being, its fundamental, if not the fundamental characteristic) of dialectics. This is exactly how Hegel puts the question.2

But of course Hegel and Lenin are not the only ones who have so treated the subject. For example, in the Tabula Smaragdina we read

This is without doubt, certain and very sure:
What is Below is like that which is Above.
And which is Above is like that which is Below.
Thereby can the mysterious activity of everything be explained.
And just as all things have been created by One
according to the plan of One, thus all things are derived
from this One by way of adoption.
Its Father is the Sun, its Mother the Moon.
The Wind carried it in its belly, its nurse is the Earth.
It is the origin of all perfectness in the entire World;
its power is complete, if it has become Earth.
Divide the Earth from the Fire, the fine from the coarse,
without tenseness and with mighty reason.
It ascends from Earth, and gains the strength
from the Above as well as of the Below.
In this way you will possess the splendor of all the world;
therefore all darkness will flee from you.
That is the strong power of all powers, that triumphs over all
subtle things and penetrates all firmness.
In this way the world has been created and
those are the miraculous affinities,
whose ways have herewith been shown.

Therefore I am called Hermes Trismegistos,
the threefold Great one, who possesses the
threefold wisdom of all the world. This finishes what I
have said about the work of the Sun. . .3

Therefore he is also called Anaximander of Miletus, Heraclitus of Ephesus, Lao–tse the Paradoxical, and Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. But to continue with Lenin . . .

1. George Catlin, The Story of the Political Philosophers (New York: Tudor, 1947), p. 621.
2. V.I.Lenin, Materialism and Empirio–Criticism (New York: International Publishers, 1927), p. 321.
3. Frederic Spiegelberg, Alchemy (San Mateo, California: Greenwood Press, 1945), pp. 1–2.

A Further Extract from the section on “Magic” in “The Universe of the New Tribalism”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

It is the struggle of opposites in the thesis-antithesis monad that eventuates in a “will” or “spontaneity” or “development” that may be coerced into producing rye from wheat or, on the macroscopic scale, into producing the Act of the Revolution. The Act of History is supposedly brought about by the inner contradictions of economic materialism, but the Act of Revolution is brought about by the conflict of Bourgeoisie and Proletariat allowing the Leader and his charisma group-party cadre to take theory or consciousness to the mindless masses and so, by the use of this theory as a definitional creative-coercive word, seek to alter the course of nature. Or as Cassiere says:

. . . the magic word . . . does not describe things or relations of things; it tries to produce effects and to change the course of nature. This cannot be done without an elaborate magical art. The magician, or sorcerer is alone able to govern the magic word. But in his hands it becomes a most powerful weapon. Nothing can resist its force.1

Magic has thus been seen as Developmental Essence and as Definitional. We will now view the epistemology of the world of magic as completely Protean

. . . the practice of magic requires a human coercer.

Richard Chase

. . . soul knows and is a cause of motion . . .


We have said that the world of magic is the world of mind, that magic is the enveloping of the universe by the mind of the magician, and that magic is the coercion of the world to the will of the magician. While all this is true, only the first statement describes the world of magic per se, because the other two statements make or imply a distinction between the knowing and the known, and in the world of magic that which known is that which is known. Consider why this must be so.

. . . before there were naturalists to explain the mechanism of plants and animals, to reason out the chain of cause and effect in the behavior of other things in our world, man’s only yardstick of normality was humanity: what he knew in himself and in his own experience was human and normal; deviations from the normal were extra-human and thus potentially superhuman. Therefore . . . the human came to address the extra-human in terms of human intercourse.2

And Burke, speaking of the definition of a substance in terms of ancestral cause, says:

Under the head of “tribal” definition would fall any variant of the idea of biological descent, with the substance of the offspring being derived from the substance of the parents or family. . . . The Latin word natura, like its Greek equivalent physis, has a root signifying to become, to grow, to be born. And the Aristotelian genus is originally not a logical, but a
biological, concept. We can discern the tribal pattern behind the notion, so characteristic of Greek nationalism, that like causes like or that like recognizes like, as with Democritus’ theory of perception.3

1. Cassiere, The Myth of the State, (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1946), pp. 282-3.
2. John A, Wilson, “Egypt: The Nature of the Universe,” in Frankfort, et al., The Intellectual
Adventure of Ancient Man (Chicago: University of Chicago, 1946), pp. 40-1.
3. Kenneth Burke, A Grammar of Motives (New York: Prentice-Hall, 1945), pp. 26-7.

Another Extract from the section on “Magic” in “The Universe of the New Tribalism”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

Bergson, who gave the modern era its clearest and most precise enunciation of this universe of discourse, says:

Intellect . . . instinctively selects in a given situation whatever is like something already known; it seeks this out, in order that it may apply its principle that “like produces like.”1

With this before us I feel that we are in a position to appreciate Cornford’s analysis of known and knowing among the early tribal Greeks.

In reviewing the psychological doctrines of the earlier schools, Aristotle remarks: “There are two points especially wherein that which is animate is held to differ from that which is inanimate, namely motion and the act of sensation (or perception): and these are, speaking in general, the two characteristics of soul handed down to us by our predecessors” (de anim. a,2,2).

The two vital functions of moving and knowing were much less clearly distinguished by the early philosophers than by Aristotle. With regard to the first of them — motion — the primitive assumption is that whatever is capable of moving itself or anything else, is alive — that the only moving force in the world is Life, or rather soul-substance. The existence of motion in the universe is thus immediate proof of Thales’ doctrine: “The All has soul in it.” Aetius describes the doctrine as follows: “There extends throughout the elemental moisture (Thales’ physis) a divine power capable of moving it.” This divine or magical power is the same as that “soul” which Thales ascribed to the loadstone, because it moves iron. Aetius, a late writer, distinguishes more clearly than Thales could have done, between the “elemental moisture” and the divine power pervading it. For Thales the moving soul was the same as the ultimate element, recognised in water, which pervades all things. The same holds of the “ever-living fire” of Heraclitus.

At first . . . mechanical motion was not distinguished from vital activity. . . . The second function of Soul — knowing — was not at first distinguished from motion. . . . Sense-perception, not distinguished from thought, was taken as the type of all cognition, and this is a form of action at a distance. All such action, moreover, was held to require a continuous vehicle or medium, uniting the soul which knows to the object which is known. Further, the soul and its object must not only be thus linked in physical contact, but they must be alike or akin.2

Understanding of this is of the utmost importance to us because criticism of this primeval tribal mind was to result in Greek philosophy, from which so much of our own rational universe of discourse was ultimately to derive, as schools of thought developed around the critical distinctions that were used to separate the matter of physis into animate and inanimate and the motion of physis into mechanical and vital, vital and divine.
But how does the magican control this universe? Ogden and Richards are very explicit.

The ingenuity of the modern logician tends to conceal the verbal foundations of his structure, but in Greek philosophy these foundations are clearly revealed. The earlier writers are full of the relics of primitive word-magic. To classify things is to name them, and for magic the name of a thing or group of things is its soul; to know their names is to have power over their souls. Language itself is a duplicate, a shadow-soul, of the whole structure of reality. Hence the doctrine of the Logos, variously conceived as the supreme reality, the divine soul-substance, as the “Meaning” or reason of everything, and as the “Meaning” or essence of a name.3

Or as Bergson says, “matter is determined by intelligence.”4

1. Henri Bergson, Creative Evolution (New York: Henry Holt, 1911), p. 29.
2. Francis M. Cornford, From Religion to Philosophy (London: Arnold, 1912), pp. 131-2.
3. C. K. Ogden and I. A. Richards, The Meaning of Meaning (New York: Harcort, Brace, 1949), p. 31.
4. Bergson, op. cit., p. 199.

Another Extract from the section on “Magic” in “The Universe of the New Tribalism”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

[ . . . ] as Bergson says, “the intellect penetrates into the inner nature of inert matter.”1 But of course this is essentialism, the magical doctrine which states that knowing essence penetrates into, knows, and controls, directs, or steers, active but nonvolitional substance. Furthermore it is radical subjectivism as the mind of the magician expands to swallow up the universe as we would expect if the world of the magician is merely the mind of the magician in extenso.

The magician lives in the world of solipsism, but even the solipsist recognizes that in order to direct his world he must discipline his thought, he must control the “forces” or “elementals” or “demons” that would distract him and he must coerce them that they may do his bidding. Thus we have the world of the magician differentiated into “microcosm” and “macrocosm,” with microcosm mirroring or “reflecting” the macrocosm. Or as Matrin Foss says:

Rightly understood every atom is a microcosm, a symbolic part, representing the whole of the universe. . . . Whenever symbolism is at work, atomism is at hand as a device of symbolization. So it was in Stoic times, when symbolism was powerful and the World appeared to be full of “logoi spermaticoi,” every one of which represented the infinite Logos, the World-Logos. So it was again in Leibniz’ philosophy two thousand years later, when monads as immaterial atoms had to build the universe and every monad as a microcosm “mirrored” the macrocosm of the universe.2

1. Henri Bergson, Creative Evolution (New York: Henry Holt, 1911), p. 195.
2. Martin Foss, Symbol and Metaphor in Human Experience (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1949), pp. 13-14.

Conclusion to in “The Universe of the New Tribalism”
by Grady Louis McMurtry

We have discussed the magical universe of discourse within which the closed tribalistic society of Marxism functions. We have seen how this universe of discourse, this magical myth of ideology, is cast in compulsive terms because of the coercive relationship of knower and known in a closed world of homeopathic magic. Here, in this closed world of magic, we have found it possible to comprehend such things as the Myth of the Iron Hand of Lenin that could destroy, create, and control the universe, or the Myth of Stalin Magus, the Mythical Hero-King and Ritual Magician, who, as God of Grape and Grain, could Rule the People Wisely and Well and Forecast the Future that it might be Fruitful and Fulfilled. It is not necessary that we should agree that he can do this, but it is essential that we should be able to comprehend why the Marxist thinks that it is possible for him to do this. It is essential because we cannot adequately assess the power of Marxism to motivate men until we recognize that the Marxist is a normal flesh and blood human being motivated by a normal human conscience and intellectually grounded in the most ancient, and most common, of all universes of discourse, that of the closed world of provincial, parochial tribalism. Too often we have attempted to solve our problems of dealing with the Marxists by indulging in the cheap luxury of polemic and the comforting thought that because Marxists do not conform to our ideas of morality they are amoral and, therefore, are without a conscience. If they have no conscience to motivate them then they can be safely regarded as spring-wound mechanisms of some kind that will sooner or later run down and no longer bother us. Such a conception is a vitiating stereotype and would be the most fatal error on our part. Marxists have a conscience based on a goal-oriented ethic inclosed in a comprehensive intellectual rationale. Their world is complete, they have a purpose, and we must expect them to act as purposeful human beings. If we would devise ways and means for breaking the compulsive cycle of Marxist activism we must first be able to understand them, understand them as purposeful, if misguided, human beings, and in order to do this we must have a grasp of the universe of discourse which makes the world intelligible to them. It has been my purpose in writing this paper to explore the millennial glow, the myth and magic in the ethic, of this Marxist universe of discourse.

Note: Originally published in Thelema Lodge Calendar, September 1999October 1999, November 1999, December 1999, January 2000February 2000, March 2000, April 2000, May 2000, June 2000, July 2000, and August 2000.