On being a pagan

On Being a Pagan
Author Alain de Benoist
Original title 'Comment peut-on être païen?'
Translator Jon Graham
Country France
Language French
Subject Ethics, metaphysics
Genre Philosophy
Publisher Albin Michel
Publication date 1981
Published in English 2004
Media type Paperback
Pages 240 (Ultra ed.)
ISBN 0-9720292-2-2
OCLC Number 213434436

On Being a Pagan, originally published in French under the title Comment peut-on être païen? "How can one be a pagan" in 1981) is a book by the French philosopher Alain de Benoist, published in English in 2004. The book is a detailed and in-depth critique of the metaphysical and ethical concepts of Judeo-Christian tradition, that have been influencing the Western culture over the past two thousand years. De Benoist details how many of these religious concepts have over time transformed into secular concepts and thinking, thus, having great impact on Western ideologies, philosophies and attitudes. He traces the thinking of both Marx and Freud to their Judeo-Christian origins, and theorizes that racial intolerance, among other things, might have its roots in monotheistic thinking. In On Being a Pagan de Benoist argues for the return to the ideals of European Paganism as a cure for the current malaise of the Western society.

The English edition of the book includes a preface by Stephen Edred Flowers.

Structure of the work

The work consists of 26 chapters.

  • Part One: Never Dying, Always Reviving
  • Part Two: Time and History
  • Part Three: The Sacred
  • Part Four: False Contrasts
  • Part Five: Dualism: For and Against
  • Part Six: God: Creator and Father
  • Part Seven: Human Nature and Freedom
  • Part Eight: Fall or Rise?
  • Part Nine: The Primacy of Mankind
  • Part Ten: Beneath and Beyond Good and Evil
  • Part Eleven: The Shapes of History
  • Part Twelve: Messianism and Utopianism
  • Part Thirteen: Space and Time
  • Part Fourteen: Iconoclasm and Beauty
  • Part Fifteen: The Universal and the Particular
  • Part Sixteen: Monotheism and Polytheism
  • Part Seventeen: Tolerance and Intolerance
  • Part Eighteen: Universalism and Particularism
  • Part Nineteen: Politics and Anti-Politics
  • Part Twenty: Man's Place in Nature
  • Part Twenty-One: Sex and the Body
  • Part Twenty-Two: Early Christianity and Late Paganism
  • Part Twenty-Three: Divine Immanence, Human Transcendence
  • Part Twenty-Four: The Coincidence of Opposites and the Problem of Evil
  • Part Twenty-Five: Tolerance and Inner Freedom
  • Part Twenty-Six: The Return of the Gods
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