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In Hoc Signo Vinces

The Standard

In the year 9, three Roman legions were destroyed by the Cherusci chieftain Hermann. Germania was spared Gaul’s fate of becoming just another province.

Most people who identify with or even know about the Germanic gods are familiar with the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest. It’s almost cliché.

Fewer know what the Romans did during the disaster. The greatest disgrace for a Roman soldier was to lose their “eagle,” their standard. One Roman standard bearer, refusing to give the barbarians the satisfaction of a captured eagle, reportedly threw himself into the bog with it. He drowned. The eagle was lost, or, in that soldier’s last thoughts, saved.

Many people know the Emperor Augustus supposedly wandered the palace after the disaster, crying, “Where are my legions?” But other accounts have him saying, “Where are my eagles?”

One highlight of Augustus’s reign was ensuring the return of eagles that the Persians had captured in a previous war. Even though he got them back through diplomacy, not war, Augustus treated it like a great victory. The Romans getting the eagles back is even depicted on Augustus’s armor on the famous statue we’ve all seen.

It’s easy to be ironic about eagles, flags, or other standards. In one play, Shakespeare’s character Falstaff dismisses the very idea of honor as absurd (“a mere scutcheon”) and says, “I’ll [have] none of it.” But his friend who becomes King Henry V gives those heroic speeches (“Once more into the breach” and “We band of brothers”) that audiences respond to even now.

Napoleon supposedly said that “a soldier will fight long and hard for a bit of colored ribbon.” If he indeed said it, he didn’t mean it cynically. He restored the tradition of giving “eagles” to his regiments. Of course, while they were a rallying point for the men, they were also targets for enemies. If a person captured one, he was a national hero.

But at the end of the day, they were chunks of metal.

The same is true of flags. If you identify with a certain country, its flag is something sacred; if you hate it, it’s something vile. If you don’t care, it’s just a piece of cloth.

We stroll past things in museums that earlier people thought were powerful, sacred, worth killing or dying for. This age has its own taboos, ones that will appeal foolish to future generations. The same person who smirks at a hero’s tomb will react like a scandalized Puritan if you question the equality of all men.

The anarchist Max Stirner said ideas like “God,” “Fatherland,” or “property rights” were just “spooks,” empty ghosts that people have created for themselves or to trick others. Most people think they are really serving some higher purpose when they are just fulfilling their own self-interest, or being fooled into serving someone else’s.  There’s a lot of truth in what he says.

Yet is it really that simple? Like the Roman who killed himself to spite his victorious enemies, there are countless examples of men who sacrifice all that they have for honor’s sake, even if it seems pointless, even if nobody will ever notice. That’s why we respond to tales of heroism and sacrifice, even in defense of causes that make no sense to us today. “You say it is the good cause that hallows any war. I say unto you: it is the good war that hallows any cause.”

There’s something inherent in us that wants to reach beyond ourselves; there’s something in life that reaches beyond life.

We read that Odin sacrificed “himself to himself” to gain knowledge. There are many ways to interpret this, but one is that he was willing to pay the price of death to glimpse a truth, even for just a moment. Think of the concept of a “good death,” which different cultures like that of the Japanese, the American Indians, and the Vikings all shared.  There was this concept of ultimate self-realization at the moment of your extinction. When famine, war, disease, and tyranny were so omnipresent, the way you met your death was basically the only choice you had.

Today, many people probably don’t even realize when they are dying because they are drugged up or unconscious. Yet ultimately, most still have that same choice. More than that, we have the far more important choice of deciding not what we will die for, but what we will live for, and how we will live.

In the past, heroes fought for a god, a flag, a king, or some other authority because they were in an environment where it was expected. Your identity was assigned to you. This was comforting in many ways.

We are wiser now, or perhaps just more cynical. We have the terrifying, awful freedom to choose our standard, to create our own eagle. We aren’t assigned it automatically. There’s no Emperor to order you forward, no warrior king to take you on a great quest. We must do it ourselves.

In this consumerist, post-honor, and increasingly post-human society, it’s easy to walk away from commitments, to shed identities, to “choose” a religion with no more thought than you might choose Amazon or Netflix. Even Marx wrote, “All that is solid melts into air, all that is holy is profaned.”

Of course, he was wrong; new idols have simply been created to replace the old ones and blasphemers are punished in the same old ways. Now, the priests of weakness preach the creed of self-degradation, and call it humanity; of degeneracy, which they call liberation.

What has truly been destroyed is the older idea of heroism, of living your life to serve something greater, higher, and nobler than yourself. Even if these concepts are just self-created, what’s been taken away is the idea of “sacrificing yourself to yourself,” of forging yourself into your own Ideal, of living a Myth and so making it real.

This is why Operation Werewolf is necessary. There is a Need to create a real culture, to worship strength, to tap into an everlasting Tradition and make it relevant to this time. In an Empire of ashes and dust, we must look to Iron and Blood to rekindle the living spirit of something authentic.

It is here. It exists now. The black flag of the Operation has been unfurled, the Totenwolf revealed, the Iron Age upon us. It is a challenge to all the world, but ultimately it is a challenge to ourselves.

Are we willing to rally around this standard? Will we accomplish what we say we will? If necessary, will we sacrifice all for this banner, the way a legionnaire would value his life as nothing before the eagle?

Many have enrolled in Werewolf Elite. Yet Operatives who didn’t, for whatever reason, are still part of this. They are still claiming the same standard. They are still creating this rising culture.

As you go into the new year, there’s a question you must ask yourself. What standard are you showing to the world? Are you willing to defend it to the end? What are the values that you proclaim? Are you going to be the person you say you are?

At a time of deracination, degradation, and entropy, we raise the banner of strength. We rally to no standard but our own. We show our belief in the Myth by living it. And we will create something that lasts forever under the banner of the wolf.

Iron and Blood,

Operative 413

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The First King: Birth of an Empire – Review

Every empire begins with a tribe. Every tribe begins with a cult.

The First King is ostensibly about Romulus, Remus, and the creation of Rome. Yet it’s really about leadership and identity.

There are no marble columns or statues in this story, no patrician class. Romulus and Remus are two shepherds eking out a living, covered in dirt and grime. After they are almost killed by a flood, they are captured and enslaved by masked warriors from Alba Longa.

They and other slaves are forced to fight to the death as part of a sacrifice. Romulus tells his brother to beat him mercilessly. When the priestess approaches to ritualistically smear blood on the “dead” Romulus, he awakens and grabs her. The other slaves break their bonds and kill their enslavers. Romulus is wounded, but he tells us brother that “the god,” represented by the fire kept by the priestess, is coming with them now.

Romulus defies two conventions. He touches the sacred priestess and he claims ownership over the fire. However, he does not deny the god’s existence or the power of Tradition. Instead, he claims it for his own new tribe.

The small band of slaves and rogues escape into a forest. They want to kill the wounded Romulus, but Remus insists that Romulus be saved. However, at one point, Remus goes to find food, and one of the men takes this chance to finish off Romulus, this burden to the group.

However, the priestess builds a “sacred fire” around the wounded man and invokes horrible curses on anyone who crosses it. Terrified, the man backs down. Remus then returns with a deer he’s slaughtered, and it’s clear he has become the leader. In fact, he proclaims himself “king.” The first king is not Romulus, but Remus.

The men then kill a band of warriors from a nearby village. Remus enters the village with his warriors, with the head of the former leader on a pike. He claims the village as the seat of his new kingdom. The priestess wonders whether he is a kind of god.

However, after a sacrifice, the priestess inspects the entrails and says that one brother must kill the other in order to create a powerful state. Everyone assumes this means Remus must kill the wounded Romulus.

Remus responds in Nietzschean fashion. He defies the prophecy and ties the priestess in the woods to be devoured by beasts. He burns the village down and lets the sacred fire go out. He kills a villager in cold blood. When defied, he forces men to bow before him. He asserts that “the god” isn’t real, and that men will make their own fates.

Romulus, now somewhat healed, confronts his brother. Remus, ashamed, goes to find the priestess, but she has already been mauled by animals and is on the verge of death. She tells him to “run away.”

Meanwhile, Romulus consoles the mourning villagers and helps them bury the dead men with the appropriate rites. He also rekindles the sacred fire and picks a young girl to feed it for the rest of her life. She is the first Vestal Virgin.

Remus regathers the remainder of his small group of warriors and try to flee the area by crossing a river. Unfortunately, the mounted soldiers from Alba Longa have finally come for revenge. They are outmatched, but Romulus and the villagers arrive to rescue them.

Yet even after this, Remus insists on his regal title. He wants everyone to bow to him. There’s an old legend that Romulus killed Remus after the latter leapt over Rome’s initial walls. Romulus then said something like, “Woe to whoever overleaps my bounds.”

In this film, Romulus makes a boundary between Remus and the sacred fire. Remus crosses it and is slain in the ensuring fight. Romulus is horrified at what he’s done, but recognizes it was necessary. Remus repents just before death, recognizing that Romulus is his king.

The small group burns the body and Romulus says his brother’s strength will guide this new settlement, Rome.

It will be a haven for slaves and outcasts, who will in turn become masters of the Earth.

If Operation Werewolf is about anything, it’s about worshiping strength. However, strength is not enough. Remus is the strongest, yet his power and charisma can’t build a society. Romulus is powerful but also what Nietzsche calls a “creator of peoples.”

He gives them a faith and a creed to bind them together. He reconnects to an ancient tradition – the sacral fire that represents the presence of “the god.” Yet he also violates the taboos. He appeals to something eternal but he adapts it to his own needs, his own time, and his own conditions.

Remus is a great warrior – the priestess even admits he is something of a god. Yet because he does not link that strength to anything greater than himself, he is ultimately defeated. His claims to “kingship” over a petty band of scruffy villagers seem pathetic and self-aggrandizing.

Yet to his credit, Remus recognizes this. Before he dies, he salutes Romulus as “my king.” In turn, Romulus holds up Remus’s strength and pride as noble qualities for his new Romans to follow.

And who are his new Romans? Outcasts, former slaves, a few warriors, some old men. But Romulus teaches them that they are strong if they are united. Outcasts can become a tribe, a tribe with a tradition becomes a people, a people can create a rising culture.

What is the ultimate goal of Werewolf Elite? Of course, there’s the objective of Total Life Reform. However, like Romulus, we want to link people to an eternal tradition that is expressing itself in new forms.

Even if you can deadlift 600 pounds, defeat anyone in a fight, overcome any physical challenge, it can only go so far if you aren’t part of something larger. Werewolf Elite is about forging something greater than ourselves.

Individual physical strength is the foundation. It’s necessary to everything we want to accomplish. But by itself, it is insufficient.

There is one final opportunity to enroll in Werewolf Elite. Then, we are cutting it off. If you feel the call to not only rebuild yourself, but build something greater than yourself, this is for you.

Remember, even Rome started with just two men.

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Of Wolves and Rulership

Written for Operation Werewolf by Operative 413


“A prince ought to have no other aim or thought, nor select anything else for his study, than war…” The Prince, Machiavelli 


“The life of man upon earth is a warfare, and his days are like the days of a hireling.” – The Book of Job


The Book of Job uses “war” to represent strain, slavery, and life’s endless burdens. In contrast, Machiavelli describes war as the sole study of rulers and the means for the lowly to reach greatness. It’s a means of ascent and somehow life-affirming. Those rulers who don’t keep it at the forefront of their minds are displaced–as they should be. 


War, then, is a constant. It’s fought with guns by states and gangs. It’s fought in a more dishonest manner with media smears and betrayals. War is simply the eternal struggle for power, through whatever means. 


Most of us don’t deal with an invading army. Yet some of us wish we did…anything for a sense of clear purpose. Of course, there’s also this despairing, nagging feeling that their world isn’t even worth fighting for.  No wonder so many feel the temptation of the noose, the needle, or the gun. In a society like this, depression is a sign of vitality. 


Why is it this way? Machiavelli knew that wise rulers must master both the war of force and the war of fraud. In the former, enemies are defeated honestly. In the latter, they are reduced to “hirelings” through deceit.


Clearly, we’re in the latter position today, and it’s been shaped this way deliberately. 


In The Prince, Machiavelli advises rulers “to choose the fox and the lion; because the lion cannot defend himself against snares and the fox cannot defend himself against wolves.” A ruler, he says, should be “half beast and half man,” and attributes the law as fitting to men, and force as fitting to beasts. 


Yet he also dispassionately notes the “faithlessness of princes” and the worthlessness of promises. “He who has known best how to employ the fox has succeeded best,” he says. A leader should be a “great pretender and dissembler.” 


If that’s what’s fitting to men, I prefer beasts. 


Machiavelli advises, accurately, that even when a prince plots the destruction of his enemies, people should see him as “merciful, faithful, humane, upright, and religious.” That sounds familiar. 


How often do we hear sanctimonious, self-righteous slogans or pleas of victimhood, guilting us into surrendering power and control over our own lives? It’s nothing but a trick–a cynical way of gaining power, self-interest disguised as self-sacrifice


Yet Machiavelli was just explaining the way things work. Whatever men or women say, life is about the pursuit of power. The more someone claims altruism, the more you should suspect their motives. 


However, I think if he was alive today, Machiavelli would rewrite some of his axioms. He dealt with men like Lorenzo the Magnificent, Cesare Borgia, Julius II. Even his “foxes” possessed virtú, the drive to accomplish great deeds.


We’re in a world without lions. When you look at so-called “elites” in the media, in politics, in culture… does anyone feel fear? Awe? Even respect? You’re more likely to feel utter contempt. Yet at the end of the day, these are the people who rule you. Today, a journalist triggered by a mean tweet ultimately has more power than the most highly trained soldier. 


The virtues of the “lion”–the ability to fight, to hunt, to lead groups of men–seem antiquated. Some tell us men themselves are outdated.  


We’re ruled, in short, by foxes, by the masters of the lie. They’ve ensnared the lions, or at least tamed them. Proud boasts about strength or bragging on social media doesn’t disguise this reality. 


Still, Machiavelli also says the “fox cannot defend himself against the wolves.” There’s something more to this than just metaphor. 


The Wolf is a powerful archetype that reaches back to the origins of many cultures. The Wolf is the outcast, yet also works as part of a cohesive unit, united under a natural hierarchy. The Wolf doesn’t simply try to overwhelm a foe with a direct charge. It hunts, it tracks, it uses skill and an uncanny wisdom to bring down its prey. More than that, by working as a group, it can overwhelm even the largest creature. 


And, as Machiavelli says, the fox cannot defend itself against the outsider, the beast in the night. Outside the civilized realm, that is, the controlled system, tricks and fraud don’t work. 


Today, only in the darkness can truth be victorious. 


Machiavelli advises those who wish to gain renown to be a “either a true friend or a downright enemy… he who conquers does not want doubtful friends who will not aid him in the time of trial.” Here again, we see this idea of an “honor culture,” where respect and fear are linked. 


Strong words must be backed by strong deeds, else they weaken the speaker. We live in a time where, thanks to social media, there’s more boasting and bragging than ever, yet the culture is dominated by those pose as victims and weaklings. There’s a lesson here in the real nature of modern power, for those with the wit to see it. 


How do we respond? It’s not fitting to cringe, fake, and pretend like the lords of lies we see on the blue screens. It wouldn’t work anyway. We can’t deceive like those born to it. 


No, in an age of decline, we must take a road different than that of the fox or the lion. We must look to the periphery, to the darkness, to the real world that exists apart from online gossip or media manipulation. We look to the Wolf.


Rather than trying to beat liars at their own system, we must defeat them by ignoring them. We must approach life with a radical sincerity. We must use terms like honor, loyalty, tribe, and ritual and defend our banner with the fanaticism of rabid animals


At the same time, this must be done deliberately and with structure. We must be aware that we are connecting with something vital lying within the very blood of our species. 


This is why Werewolf Elite has been created. 


You are already in a war. You are ruled. Yet you still have a choice. 


Do you want to throw away your life in pointless braggadocio and self-deception? 


Do you want the life of a “hireling,” yearning for the peace of the grave? 


Or do you want a chance to carve out a saga that means something, that offers you a path, purpose and Initiation into something greater? 


That is what has been created. That is what begins in just a few weeks. This is not simply a fitness plan, some self-help group, or a logo for edgy photos. This is a program of Total Life Reform, an honor culture of group accountability, and standards that will be ruthlessly enforced. 


The purpose is nothing less than to wage the war of life in a new way, to remake the world as we see fit. 


If you’re satisfied with the way things are, then this isn’t for you. 


If you’re scared of some mean words online, there are other things you can do with your time. 


If you’re content to be a “hireling,” read no more.


If you want your life to mean something, sign up for updates here. Werewolf Elite launches December 1. And we intend to shake the cosmos with what we are creating. 


This is the Wolf Road to power, the means to tear free of the lies and snares that are holding you back and to remake yourself in the forge of trial, struggle, and brotherhood. We don’t promise you something easy. We promise you something that will make you stronger, more capable, more driven, and, for the few, a brotherhood that not even death can sunder


“Nothing recommends a prince so highly to the world as great enterprises and noble expressions of his own valor and conduct,” wrote Machiavelli. 


It’s still possible for such things, even in this world. For you princes of men out there, for you who still have the blood of victorious ancestors and conquerors, this is your sign.


Join us.  


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Become Hegemon

Written for Operation Werewolf by Operative 413

The Hegemon is the one who has dominance. Power. Authority. In reference to a state, the Hegemon is the superpower and the arbiter. In reference to a person, the Hegemon is the commander. 

If you believe certain mouthpieces, the Hegemon is also a problem to be solved. 

“Hegemonic Masculinity” is a theory created a few decades ago. It claims there is a certain ideal of a man which justifies the domination of women and lesser men. 

What is the hegemonic male? He is aggressive, powerful, and capable of violence. He doesn’t display weakness. He is successful and competes with other men to show his worth. He is attractive to women. 

He is the general, the tycoon, the patriarch. He is both Aristocrat and Outlaw. He imposes his will on the world. 

This is bad, mouthpieces say, because it creates or justifies inequality between men and women. It also “marginalizes” men who don’t act this way. 

Similarly, some argue we are trapped in the “man box.” The box is constructed by expectations, the code of conduct of a “real man.” You are forced into this pattern of behavior whether you want to be or not. 

If you violate these expectations, you are punished. You are mocked. You are bullied. You might be attacked or killed. At least they say so. 

We’re trapped, we’re told, because we are expected to show strength, aggression, stoicism. For our own liberation, we are told, we must escape the box of masculinity. 

Should we thank those who promise to liberate us? Whenever someone tells you that you must question your values, you need to ask yourself something different. How does it benefit this person if I do what he or she says?

You may notice that those who lecture you about “privilege” and “equality” do so from positions of almost unfathomable power. Those called “marginal” are the ones in charge. 

Hegemonic Masculinity is a “social construct” supposedly forced on us. Yet the journalists, the academics, the politicians, the corporate-approved musicians, the human resources mangers… do they not have power? 

Can they not create “social constructs” of their own? 

Do they not attack us if we violate their expectations?

You’ve read the articles online decrying masculinity. You’ve sat through the trainings at your job or watched the videos online. Have they ever made you feel better? Or more worthless? Malleable? Controllable? 

Men are simply being forced into a new box. We are twisted, mutilated and crushed so we can fit into a new little container labeled “Consumer.” There’s no room to move inside. There is no Man or Woman, anyway, just interchangeable units with assigned opinions and activities. 

Masculinity is not simply a “social construct.” The decline of testosterone in men, a biological reality, has had huge effects in the developed world, in cultures as different as Japan and America. Study after study confirms that a decline in testosterone leads to an increase in depression, as well as feelings of fatigue and lack of focus. 

If we were serious about helping men, we might talk about why this is happening biologically. We might talk how this contributes to the lack of purpose many men feel. We might talk about the collapse of communities, institutions, and families. Instead, we’re told that our speech, thoughts, and behavior must be policed even more. If you don’t like it, there’s always antidepressants, opioids, or porn. Anything to shut you up, preferably for good.  

When the System’s powerful masquerade as victims, a noble soul should feel contempt. “Niemand ist mehr Sklave, als der sich für frei hält, ohne es zu sein,” said Goethe. “None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.” Slavery often arrives in the guise of liberation. 

The weaker you are, the stronger they become. So why wouldn’t the mouthpieces preach the gospel of decay?

There is always a Hegemon. It may not be a man or a state. It may simply be a System, a culture, an ideology or a class. But something always rules. 

This is true of individuals. Who rules you? Are you Hegemon of your own life? 

Every day, you have feelings of weakness, laziness, or greed. It may be something as simple as wanting to skip a workout or eat processed garbage. Instead of improving yourself, you watch a crappy movie you’ve seen already. 

You must become Hegemon of yourself, commanding your body and mind to the upward path. You must despise feelings of pain and resistance.

The Hegemon commands himself ruthlessly. Each moment that passes is a defeat unless it is filled with furious, victorious action. He is dictator of his soul, master of his passions, commander of his entire being. His body and mind become a united Legion that marches forth conquering and to conquer. 

Yes, the “Hegemonic Man” is an Ideal. Intellectually we know realizing an Ideal is impossible. But fuck intellect. Fuck rationality. Immanentize the eschaton and pursue it with total abandon and sacred madness.

What of groups? These “masculinity” experts say that men need to get in touch with their feelings of weakness or inadequacy. What is so sickening is that we live in a culture seemingly designed to make us sick, spiritually and physically. The medicine prescribed is the very poison that made us this way.  

We are told about having a “shoulder to cry on.” Yet when a group endlessly wallows in weakness, does anyone ever emerge? Suicides, overdoses, and self-destruction spread like a virus. 

What about these post-men who have deconstructed themselves? Constantly on the brink of hysteria, their mindset utterly determined by what appears on their blue screens, do they seem happy or content? For that matter, what about many modern women? Are they happy now that they are “liberated?”

Of course, we are all weak sometimes. A relationship ends, a child dies, a horrific disease strikes from nowhere. Our soul cracks. We give in to despair. Many of us will grow old and enfeebled in body. King Death takes us in the end. 

When we fall, we look to our tribe to lift us. This works only if the tribe itself is a banner of strength, if our brothers and sisters fill our hearts with fire, passion, and contempt for pain and suffering. Strength attracts strength. 

I have seen the strongest men I know, men I freely admit are far stronger than me mentally and physically, brought low. I have seen how tribe has ripped them out of the abyss to restore them to their higher self and drive onward. And in my weak moments, they have done the same for me. 

This is what the mouthpieces will never understand. When a brother is stronger than me, I want to surpass him. In a contest, I want to defeat him. In a fight, I want to hurt him. Yet this isn’t an expression of hostility, but loyalty. 

In a tribe or group, there is always a Hegemon. But the best don’t make their followers feel worthless. What glory is there in tending a flock of sheep? 

The Hegemon elevates his Companions. He makes them feel like he is leading them on a heroic journey, a saga that will be remembered. He demands the impossible. He pushes them to surpass themselves. He challenges them to surpass him. And when age, battle or misfortune finally claims him, the Hegemon is remembered. 

This is the true secret of Valhalla. A man can become legend through his deeds. He lives eternally in the deeds he inspires in his brothers. He becomes a god who posthumously commands his followers to Keep Rising. 

This is how we become Hegemon over King Death Himself. 

I said you should question the self-interest of anyone who preaches morality at you. So what do I gain if you believe me? I may gain a strong opponent I will face someday. I may gain a source of inspiration. It’s possible I may even gain a comrade or brother I will see across the fire. But I know I don’t benefit from your weakness and depravity. 

Can the mouthpieces say the same?

You are a creature of limited means and power. You have this brief time to justify your existence. Marshall what resources you have. Rally to the banner of strength. Smash the box they want to put you in and forge your own path to immortality. 

Become Hegemon.

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The Wolf God and the Ecstatic Host

Written for Operation Werewolf by Operative 413

Wodan id est furor – Adam of Bremen

There is one true Wolf Cult. It has existed from the beginning. It manifests in different forms throughout the millennia. Yet it always serves the same function. 

Kris Kershaw’s The One-eyed God: Odin and the (Indo-) Germanic Männerbünde gives us a glimpse of the sacred mystery at the cult’s heart. From Greece, to Germania, to India, groups of young men were taken from their homes and initiated into an oath-bound warrior band. They would be dedicated to a specific god. In battle, they were the “highly mobile bands of ecstatic warriors who would fling themselves first into the fray,” the guerillas who would raid and reave.  Yet they would learn also the lore, the prayers, the veda. 

They were outside the protection of the larger tribe and whatever law existed. For this reason, the avatar of the Wolf became universal. The wolf is outside settled life. He represents savagery and viciousness. But wolves also work together. 

“The werewolf life is part of the training of the young warrior throughout the IE [Indo-European] world,” writes Kershaw. The male child symbolically dies, and through a period of trial and learning, prepares for the time when he will be part of the tribe and have a wife, land, and children of his own. 

Yet this wasn’t just physical training. The young men were stripped of their own identity. In masked rituals at certain times of the year, they would rampage through villages and towns, demanding tribute. It was chaotic and destructive, but the people accepted it, because it was thought to bring prosperity for the coming year. In European folklore, this is remembered as the Wild Hunt. We’ll even see degraded remnants of this tradition in a few days, on Halloween. 

What were the youths doing? When they masked themselves, sometimes with ash, they were not “in disguise.” Everyone could recognize them. Yet there were no longer themselves. They were the Ancestors. A young warrior’s physical death is meaningless because in the sacred realm, the only one understood to be “really real and meaningful,” he’s become the Dead. 

More than that, he is one of the Dead who represent the “Immortals, in whom the life-force, that divine spark, is far more potent and efficacious now that they are no longer mortal.” That force, which we understand as strength and vitality, is most apparent in young men. Thus, they carry out this ritual. “Whether the man has died in battle or of old age, he lives on as the warrior in the prime of his youth,” writes Kershaw. 

This belief lives on. Obviously, we think of Valhalla where the heroic dead fight and feast eternally. Yet some Christians also believe that those saved will have perfect bodies in heaven, all imperfections removed. 

Whatever your faith, I ask you to think of the last funeral you attended for one who died in old age. Generally, you don’t dwell on dementia, cancer, or sickness. You remember the dead in his or her prime, full of strength and vitality. 

Having already “died,” young warriors would live forever through their tribe, and thus represented their people’s collective identity. They would throw themselves into battle with ecstasy, without fear, because their temporal existence no longer mattered. They were in an eternal battle to uphold the cosmos and the existence of their tribe. 

It’s easy to see why Odin was patron of such groups. He could raise those dedicated to him to “super-human heights,” but could allow them to be struck down for his own mysterious purposes. Odin was also the god of knowledge, poetry, and inspiration, who would give those dedicated to him verses and songs that hailed strength, beauty, and heroism. 

What a contrast to the stereotypical poets of today, who pen cynical and crippled words that express their disgust at being alive. 

Odin was the collective embodiment of a principle or a group. Some call Odin Herjan, usually translated as “lord” or “ruler.” Yet Kershaw shows it really means he was “the mythical leader and personification of the “herr, the warrior band. He’s a war-god, but of a very particular type. He’s the Wolf God, a Death God, the avatar of an oath-bound warrior band. 

That said, the understanding of Odin changed over time. Kershaw notes that Odin was not always portrayed as one-eyed. “It is in Odin as leader of warriors–in Odin as leader of an army of ecstatic wolf-warriors–that we will find the answer to the puzzle of Odin the one-eyed god.” [Bold text in original]. 

Kershaw exhaustively connects Germanic customs and symbols with those found in India. He links Odin to wolves and dogs and those animals’ symbolic connection with death. He also identifies Odin with aspects of the Hindu deities Rudra and Kali, and a mysterious ritual in which a game of dice would select the leader of a war band. 

Paradoxically, it was the loser of this dice game, the person left with a single token, who became the “Dog, the Leader of the Wild Hunt” or the “Dog of the Wilderness.” The outcast thus became the center. He suggests that over millennia, this developed into our image of Odin as the One-Eyed. 

Of course, with the paucity of sources, we can never know for sure. “Much ancient wisdom concerning both Indra and Rudra must be forever lost to us,” Kershaw writes, which could be said of almost all ancient Indo-European traditions. This shows the foolishness of trying to slavishly “reconstruct” an ancient belief system. At different times and in different places throughout the Indo-European world, people understood the Wolf God differently. 

Yet these same symbols, rituals and archetypes kept emerging. What matters is identifying the common elements that spawned from our collective unconscious. More importantly, one needs to understand why people did these things and why we are still called to them. What eternal truths did these rites symbolize? What living force are we tapping into? Is there some primordial tradition that these names, symbols, and forces represent? 

Ritual and tribal life must be something real, organic, relevant, and dangerous. Otherwise, it’s just playing make-believe. If you’re reading off a script, you’re doing it wrong. 

For this reason, it’s worth considering what Odin represented both then and now. “He never hangs around for years: he is the wanderer, the guest, and always mysterious,” writes Kershaw. This is Grimnir, the Masked or Hooded One. He was a god of thieves and footmen, of berserkers and youthful warrior bands that were not really in the society. Those who march under the banner of the Operation can understand this feeling of being outlaws. Under English common law, the term that meant a person was outside the protection of the system and could be killed was caput gerat lupinum, “may he wear a wolf’s head.”

And yet, as Kershaw notes, the wolf-god Odin and those like him in other traditions can also become a “god of the center.” Odin is the “All-Father,” the lord of Asgard, the god we think of as “head” of the pantheon. 

Thus, we can speak of the Odinic path as encompassing outlaws and kings. The Wolf’s path to kingship is a crooked one. For what is a king but one who has made his own law? And what are we here for if not to become kings by our own hands?

Yet this cannot be done alone. What the modern world lacks more than anything else is initiation, a process by which young people, especially young men, understand their history and identity. There is no trial or challenge that marks the moment of responsibility. There is no tribe, no oath-bound group to hold you to a code of honor.  

Then we wonder why men kill themselves, become addicted to opioids, or disappear into a bottle. Or, arguably worse, we see “men,” including “successful men” with jobs and careers, lapsing into a kind of permanent childhood and obsessing over fandoms, toys, and corporate franchises. 

For men, for those who are something more than consumers, the only acceptable response is scorn and defiance. Yet there must be a way forward. 

This is what we are building with the Wolves and with the Operation. The point is to reconnect with something eternal, to build what needs to exist in this dead world. To offer that initiation, that challenge, and that honor culture. To pick up that torch which has fallen, but which is never extinguished.  

In coming weeks, you will see what we mean. This is about building something real, in this world, today. 

The Hooded One has appeared in many guises, under many names. Now, the Wolf God is showing himself again. He offers a path. But you must take the first step. 

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Turning Routine into Ritual

Written for Operation Werewolf by Operative 413

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Ritual is universal.

A materialist would say this is because of the human desire for control over an uncontrollable reality. Men turn to rituals when confronted with illness, danger, and above all, death.

Soldiers, sailors, and those in other dangerous professions have intricate rituals and codes of behavior that novices defy at their peril. Yet people also use ritual in less existential situations, especially in athletics. 

Anyone who has played any sport knows some of these petty rituals. If you were in Little League, you remember turning your hat inside out to form “rally caps.” If you played basketball, you had a set routine before you shot a free throw, usually a certain number of dribbles before you lined up your shot. If you played football, you doubtless knew someone on the team who had a shirt or some token he would only wear on game day. 

The great American distance runner Steve Prefontaine famously said, “To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.” It’s something custom made for T-shirts or posters in college dorm rooms. Yet in the eponymous 1997 film about “Pre,” I thought a quote from discus thrower Mac Wilkins, 1976 Olympic gold medalist, was more inspirational. 

“I live and breathe the discus, Pre,” he says. “I mean, I hate Christmas and Thanksgiving and Easter and anything that disrupts my routine.” Anyone training for a fight or trying to hit a PR feels the same way. 

Diet, training regimens, sleep schedules–all of that can be destroyed by a holiday, a child’s sickness, an “emergency” at work, some trip you just can’t get out of. And you find yourself resenting the people around you who are taking you out of the reality you’ve constructed and forcing you back into theirs. 

Worse, when one routine is upset, others follow. When you miss workouts, you tend to stray from your diet plan. On the road, you suddenly start eating junk food from convenience stores or whatever artificial crap you wouldn’t touch while at home. 

“Routine” is a word that makes us think of the banal and boring. But routine becomes ritual when it serves a higher end–when it is the tool you use to craft your reality. 

Going to work at a job you hate is routine. Using powerful concepts, symbols, and exercises to walk a path of ascent is ritual. 

Every athlete uses some sort of ritual. Powerlifter Kirk Karwoski says that before he “goes to work,” everything is “exactly the same, every time,” including which hand he places on the bar first. The purpose is to ensure that both mechanics and mindset are correct during the lift. Once this is done, all you must do is “not fuck up for 20 seconds,” as he puts it. 

Sometimes athletes use a different kind of ritual, to break out of a failing routine. In life, these are the rituals of “rebirth” or “cleansing” you see in various faith traditions. In sports, this is when you see people engaging in bizarre behavior to break a slump or a losing streak. You’re readjusting your mindset, shocking your consciousness out of destructive practices.

Both have the same end, to unite mindset with action. Yet at the same time, you are also trying to separate consciousness from the action. In work and in athletic performance, you are at your best when you are “in the zone,” the state described by psychologists as “flow.” 

When you begin rationalizing, questioning, or doubting what you are doing, you fail. 

Think of a compound lift like a squat clean. Often, beginners fail because they pull the bar too early, trying to muscle up the weight with their arms instead of using proper technique to use momentum and the strength of their body. Even experienced lifters may “fuck up within 20 seconds” if they are attempting a new weight. 

At lower weights, the athlete will use proper technique because he knows there’s almost no possibility of failure. At higher weights, he begins to think about all the things he needs to do to execute the lift correctly; popping the hip, not pulling too early, getting under the bar…

By trying to deconstruct the lift, he ends up performing it all wrong and it all falls apart. “Stop thinking about it,” a coach will often tell you.

In a jiu-jitsu match, at the gym, or even in a street fight, self-awareness, rationalization and doubt are the enemies of success. 

To put it another way, you are at your best self when you are not aware of yourself. 

This even applies in longer activities where you can’t help thinking to yourself, like running a marathon or using a rowing machine. A new study, the first of its kind, found that “self-distancing” increases performance in endurance events. Telling yourself “you will win” is more effective than saying “I will win.” 

Even more striking, other research shows that this “distancing” language helps in other stressful activities, like public speaking or meeting a new group of people. “You’ve got this” is better than “I’ve got this.”

Of course, when people use this kind of talk, who is doing the talking? That higher consciousness, that best self, is the expression of your True Will. And you know what it means when that Highest Self takes over. 

Think of any accomplishment in your life–winning a boxing match, getting a PR, hitting a home run or draining a critical three-pointer. Or think of a moment of danger–whether you saw combat overseas or were attacked at a bar and fought back. 

You weren’t aware of yourself while it was happening. Training took over. It was just happening, and somehow, you were looking at yourself from the outside. And yet, at that moment, you probably felt more alive than you ever had before. You were able to respond effectively, even to something unexpected.

Ritual can serve as a mental short cut to that state. It lets you travel between the worlds, so to speak, between your banal existence and your highest self. 

A small ritual, like gripping the bar in a certain way or a mantra before you attempt a lift, prepares you for success. Something greater can allow you to break through barriers, to transcend what you think is possible. 

For example, in “On Magic,” Paul Waggener writes of how he prepares a special chalk in a bag painted with blood, liquid testosterone, plant elements, and other ingredients. He only uses this when he attempts a deadlift record. 

“This is a physical object that is capable of changing my mindset,” he writes. “It alters reality for me in a very real way. When I use that chalk, I fuck shit up. I lose my mind in the act of savagely using heavy shit. It moves me from a normal mind into an animal… it really, really works. Go try it.”

The greatest rite is to make of your entire life a grand ritual. Each act becomes sacred and each object used infused with meaning and purpose. Sigils, a personal mantra, even the clothes you wear and the food you eat are all ways of keeping your mind in the proper place. 

Ritual is a tool that allows us to “return home” when we are displaced mentally or physically. It prevents us from losing our way when we are on the road. It paves the way for continuous Victorious Action. 

By losing ourselves in ritual, we gain self-mastery. We can unite everyday action with our True Will. Ultimately, the operative can’t live a life of mere routine.

He should make of his life a Grand Ritual, a Great Work that will outlast his time on Earth.


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The Revolution Isn’t Online

Written for Operation Werewolf by Operative 413

Operatives from around the country and the world gathered at the second Lupine Equinox Conclave.  

They trained. They fought. They learned. 

They received words of fury and inspiration over blood and fire. They heard artists sing of death and revolt. They formed bonds of friendship and brotherhood that may last the rest of their lives. 

There were also many things they did not do.

They did not talk shit. They did not idly boast. They did not pretend to be someone other than who they were. 

You don’t see this often. It’s true that technology enables us to spread a message to the world… for now at least. We can find those of like mind wherever they reside. 

But only in theory. We don’t really know who the person is on the other side of that bluescreen. We don’t even know if it’s a person capable of understanding. It could just be a tourist, a snitch, or a consumer looking for a cheap dopamine fix while he or she’s at work or on the subway. 

There’s something inherently degrading about online text. It lacks handwriting’s vitality or even the mechanical precision of a typewriter. Even the most profound thoughts become pixels. It risks becoming just a collection of dots you look at while you’re bored. 

Instead of meaningful communication, we get visual noise. Praise and insults are cheap because we don’t know if the avatar we see on the screen is real. In some ways, everyone is equal online, which means everyone is worthless.

“Of all that is written, I love only what a person hath written with his blood,” said Nietzsche. How can one do this online?

We look to an older wisdom. “Each word led me on to another word, Each deed to another deed” were the words of the High One. To write with blood online, we must accomplish the most difficult of all things. Word must lead to deed.

Tribe is not online. Nor is honor, nor brotherhood. These things can only be found in the real world. 

More than that, they can only be found in a group context. You can tell yourself you are a warrior, a hero, or a magician. You can lie to yourself. But you can’t lie to your brothers and sisters. They see you for what you are. 

Each word written here is meaningless unless it leads to action. More than that, these words, no matter how perfectly expressed or presented, will not reach everyone. They aren’t meant for everyone. They are for a minority of a minority. 

An even smaller elite within that group will act.  Few indeed will do what Needs to be done without cowering from the resentful judgment of a decaying world.

Some of these few came to the home of the Wolves just days ago. They acted. Suddenly, they found that together, they were many. 

Just by doing this, they separated themselves from the herd. They may not all make it to the end of the path. But they have at least begun the journey. 

The first step from theory to practice is the most difficult. I salute them for the courage they showed. 

It takes courage because action marks the departure from the ideal. Online, you can have some perfect theory. You can confidently declare the way things ought to be. You can decide how people should conduct themselves. If things don’t work out the way you predicted, it’s not your fault. It’s because people didn’t live up to your perfect theory.

You can critique. You can complain. You can hold yourself above the fray, never taking the risk of action, congratulating yourself on your own superiority. You can keep the illusion that you are better than everyone else… until that terrible moment of action.

You either lift that bar or you don’t. You get the girl or you don’t. You win the fight or you stare at your blackened eyes and swollen face in the mirror, meditating on your defeat and humiliation for days afterward. 

If an action is hard, walking a path to the end is harder. Injuries and illness take their toll. Friends and lovers can betray you. The world throws obstacles in your path, demanding you fall to your knees and be weak, defeated, and submissive. That’s what this System wants you to be. 

And yet we must accept the price for achievement. We must rise with holy defiance in our hearts and strength in our limbs. We must endure to the end. We must fight to bring that ideal into reality, not because it is easy, but because everything worthwhile is hard.

It is hard, but not impossible. I know it is not impossible because I see glimpses of the world that could be. I see it here, now, in this world. I saw it at Conclave. 

This was not theory, or gossip, or wishes. These were people bringing the world they wanted into reality. For one day, in one place, it reigned. It existed. It was the rest of the world that was fake.

Operation Werewolf is not about vaguely motivating you. It’s not about making you work harder or get stronger. These aren’t bad things to do, but they won’t transform you. They won’t transform the world. 

Operation Werewolf is a challenge for Total Life Reform. It’s an alchemical process with the goal of remaking yourself, and by so doing this, remaking the world. 

This requires that you do more than read. It requires you act, and after that first awful step, continue to act, each deed to another deed. 

It may seem intimidating. It is intimidating.  We have all been on that precipice between thought and action. We who bear the Wolf’s head or the banner of the operation took that first step into the unknown darkness, searching for that fire.

Then you find that fire. There is a moment when you realize that out of that primal Need, you have created something. You’ve built a tribe. You’ve remade yourself. You slowly see that Ideal — battered, beaten but not broken — taking shape in the real world.

The most important things happening today are not online. They aren’t being covered by journalists, chronicled on social media, or tracked by Silicon Valley. Art and ritual, ecstasy and madness, struggle and victory… these things are outside the realm of the blue screen. They are beyond the reach of the Lords of Lies.

The words we speak at ritual and the oaths we take have more impact than anything ever written, or that ever could be written. The tribes we build exist here, now, and are creating a new world over the decaying ruins of the old. Not even death can separate the bonds we are forging. 

The only thing that is holding us back from returning the Golden Age is fear. I know you have that fear. I had it too. Don’t let it define you.

If you have the eyes to see and the ears to hear this message, I urge you to act. To take the risk, to justify your existence, to move into the world of blood and iron and away from the fantasy of pixels and illusion. For everything written here is just a means to end. 

What is the end? Realizing the Ideal we hold in our hearts and in our blood. I can see glimpses of it, advancing, taking shape, materializing in response to our grand evocation. Look closely in the shadows, in the flames, and on the banners of the divisions. 

Perhaps you can see it too. 

If you can, step forward.

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Honor Culture

Written for Operation Werewolf by Operative 413

There have been three great revolutions in history. You’re living in the last one. 

From the dawn of history until only a few  centuries ago, most people lived in an Honor Culture. Some people still do. Maybe you’re one of them. 

In an Honor Culture, reputation is supreme. If you are hit, you hit back or look weak. If you are weak, your property, family, and life can be taken. If insulted, you confront. If threatened, you protect.

It’s on you to protect yourself and those you care about. It’s on you to act in a way that those in your tribe, your gang, your army, your empire, your village, think you someone worthy of respect. 

An Honor Culture builds great men. It also creates killers. 

An Honor Culture means constant grudges, feuds, and vendettas. If you tolerate a slight, you may lose everything. Entire communities are gutted by conflicts that never end, blood for blood, life for life. 

Elaborate rituals and codes of respect and hospitality arise to regulate the carnage. 

It’s something that was universal—the Icelandic Sagas are filled with tales of wars between families that go on for generations. In some places, probably still in most places, this is the way of the world. Sometimes, it’s fought within limits. Sometimes, it’s war to the knife. 

And though this culture seems so foreign to us, it wasn’t that long ago that this country’s Vice President shot dead the former Secretary of the Treasury over words. 

The face that stares at you from the twenty-dollar bill is that of a killer who took a bullet to the chest, then calmly murdered his helpless opponent. 

But the state grew, courts spawned, laws proliferated. Honor retreated. It wasn’t needed anymore. A new culture developed—a culture of dignity. 

A Dignity Culture values the individual. Everyone has inherent “rights,” and everyone acts accordingly. This is what took root in the West in the last few centuries. 

If someone damages your property, you call the police. If cheated, you sue. If you work with someone, you demand a contract, backed by law. 

But you don’t do it all time. Mostly, you can figure out things on your own. You practice restraint. You can afford to. The State, the “coldest of all cold monsters,” is always there. 

You expect safety, so you stop being dangerous. But you also don’t become reliant or submissive. You accept an insult, lest you be arrested if you turn to violence. But if attacked first, you retaliate. Even in this culture, you can push a man too far. 

Heroes arise when “dignified” men are placed in extraordinary situations—wars, criminal attacks, a sudden natural disaster. Yet by its nature, Dignity Culture can’t produce a king, a conqueror, a Myth. The hero, in this culture, returns to the “normal” world after his extraordinary deed. 

The Dignity Culture produces “good” men, not great men. Something is lost, but physical safety is gained. Instead of commanders, you get CEOs. Instead of vicious knifemen operating in the shadows, you get lawyers. 

This moral culture only lasted a brief time in history. It could only have been created because some remnants of Honor Culture restrained people from becoming entirely dependent on the State or from completely giving up their pride or idenities. 

You live in this world now. But it’s decaying. Something new is replacing it. In many places, it already has. 

A 2014 paper called “Microaggression and Moral Cultures” defines an ascendant “A Culture of Victimhood.” Like an Honor Culture, it is extremely attentive to slights. Unlike in an Honor Culture, the “victim” seeks the help of third parties to avenge them. This system doesn’t produce men—just consumers. 

“People increasingly demand help from others, and advertise their oppression as evidence that they deserve respect and assistance,” write Bradley Campbell and Jason Manning. “Thus we might call this culture a culture of victimhood because the moral status of the victim, at its nadir in honor cultures, has risen to new heights.”

They argue this culture is already ascendant on many college campuses. And you’ve seen it in the larger culture too. People brag about their mental problems, their disabilities, their depression, their newly invented sexual identities. 

These aren’t cries for help or self-affirmation. These are weapons wielded against targets. Weakness is strength. If your words, your actions, or your existence makes someone feel uncomfortable, they can use corporate media or state action against you. At the least, they get the System to try to shut you up. 

The weakest person, the most unstable, the most hysterical, is the one with all the power in such a System. Worst of all, without mind-reading, there’s no way to tell whether such a person is being sincere or just claiming victimhood to gain power.

Equality isn’t just undesirable, it’s impossible. Hierarchy is constant. It is eternal. Under any system, under any conditions, it will emerge in new forms. Even in a system dedicated to “equality,” someone has power over you. Instead of the strong, it’s the cynical who rule over the herd in this System. 

When someone preaches “equality,” it’s because that person wants to be in charge. None possess more “privilege” than those who speak about “privilege.” 

Disagree? Speak back at them. 

See how long you keep your social media, your business, or your job. 

See what the media has to say about you. See where your “rights” go. 

You can bench 400 pounds but if you say “gendered language” in the wrong setting, you’re their bitch. 

Pissed? Good. It shows you have some shred of honor. It’s time to rediscover that essential virtue. 

Like we are learning with our food, our physical activity, and our whole way of life, we weren’t meant to fucking exist under this kind of a moral culture. It’s driving both men and women crazy. 

Yet far too many think the solution is to double down on the System that’s failing them. They want more controls, more catering to their “victimhood,” more programs, more censorship, more safe spaces and pretty lies. 

The solution is simpler. Fuck the System. Fuck Systems entirely. Fuck the Vote. In this world, you’re a cog and you’re expendable. Your worth is what little you can contribute to keep the Beast staggering along, and how can you can give what little you earn right back to it. When you die, you’re no longer an economic input or output. You’re forgotten. 

How do you rebel? The vulnerability of Victim Culture is that it depends on third parties. The “rulers” in such a system are the most enslaved of all. 

Instead of dependence, you prize self-reliance. In an age of total disintegration, you build a new Order from the ground up.

The System won’t be salvaged from within. It can only be undermined from without. Wolves in the shadows of empire, in the darkness out of reach of the Masters of Lies and their bluescreens. 

It’s time for tribes, cults, and warbands to return. It’s time for Honor to return. 

How do we define Honor? It can only be defined within a group context. It is defined by keeping one’s oaths to those bound to you, and bringing glory, wealth and strength to your tribe. You don’t give yourself Honor. Those in your group give you Honor. 

Does modern Honor Culture lead us down the same path of pointless feuds and vendettas? It doesn’t. Creation, not destruction, is what we do. We worship strength. We build shrines in the forests and temples of our bodies. We write new Myths and live our own Sagas. We defeat the Empire by ignoring it. 

Yet even if it did, what matter? We’re already in the world of pointless feuds of vendettas. Say the wrong word, look at the wrong person, or even just be caught in a random “viral” controversy and it’s all over for you in today’s culture. Even if you play by the rules, that’s no guarantee of safety. 

The difference is that in an Honor Culture you take responsibility for your own safety and reputation. In Victim Culture, you trust someone else to do it for you, usually the automatons of Media or Law. 

Why try to live up to the standards of those without Honor? Better to build your own group and live up to each other’s standards. Better to create sparks among the kindling  of this gray world, until they spread to form a conflagration. We can build our own Honor Cultures without anyone’s permission. 

And when we do that, the Age of Heroes will return. 

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Alexander – Living the Myth

Alexander: Living The Myth by Operative 413

Few bridged the gap between man and god like Alexander the Great.

Caesar’s very name was a title of lordship for centuries, but he “became a god” after he died. Alexander was thought of as a god even while alive. Unlike in the case of crazed despots like Caligula, even some of Alexander’s closest companions thought it might be true. 

F.S. Naiden’s “Soldier, Priest and God” is a religious biography of the conqueror. It reveals a lesson we can use today – you can live your own Myth. You become legend by becoming aware that you are already in one. Whether you actually believe in “gods” or spirits is largely irrelevant. However, a Cult, männerbund, a ritualized order that binds your best people together, can bind your tribe together and lead you to victory. 

Of course, Alexander’s world was very different than ours. “Atheism” was basically unknown. Moreover, as king, it was his job not just to rule, but to offer sacrifice and serve as intermediary between his people and the gods. “We may think of him as the Pope, the Holy Roman Emperor, and the head of the Church of England, all in one,” says Naiden. 

“When Alexander used religion astutely, he and his army prospered… when Alexander neglected or mismanaged religion, he and his army suffered,” he notes, essentially summarizing the whole book. Significantly, he writes, “The farther he got from the Mediterranean, where he knew some of the gods and had a feel for others, the less skill he displayed, the more men he killed or lost.” Adopting a foreign or unknown tradition is inauthentic; you can’t immerse yourself in the Myth.

Macedonia was a backwater compared to mighty Greek city-states like Athens, Sparta, and Thebes. The Macedonians, to some horrified Greeks, appeared like Homeric characters that the civilized city-states had left behind. But the urbanites submitted all the same. 

What allowed Alexander’s father, Philip II, to turn Macedonia into a great power? “He gave them a cult,” said Naiden. The king’s “Companions,” a quasi-official title designating membership in the cult, “worshipped together, hunted together, and fought together.” “Their leader, the king,” he writes, “was priest, master of the hunt, and commander.” Membership was irrevocable, for life, and bound by the “most sacred oath” to Zeus, the “patron” of the cult. Each Companion, before joining, had to “kill a boar without a net.” 

Philip II didn’t invent this institution, but transformed it. At first, it had just been a kind of status symbol for courtiers, presumably not taken very seriously. Philip II turned it into a “sort of religious guild for officers,” increasing the number by hundreds. Companions that fought and hunted together would battle ferociously to save a wounded fellow member, regarding their own lives as secondary. They would compete in bravery and to prove loyalty. Instead of the king simply giving orders, he would, as one of the Companions, seek consensus with his officers. Though there was an idea of an afterlife, it was not “Zeus’s business”; victory and valor in this life was the point. 

Later, as he grew in power, Philip II expanded the idea, extending membership to the leaders of the low-born infantry commanders as “foot companions.” He also expanded this honor to members of other local tribes that acknowledged his kingship after alliance or conquest. He had created a revolutionary new army where commoners and nobles were bound together by sacred commitment.  

When Philip II was assassinated, Alexander legitimized his claim to the throne by leading the Companions in sacrifice and ritual. His war against the Persian Empire wasn’t just revenge, or a quest for glory, but something of a Crusade. Zeus was thought to rule Asia and Africa. Alexander would win by killing the emperor Darius or forcing him to supplicate, thus making Alexander King of Asia. Individual victory by the spear wasn’t “might makes right,” it conferred divine legitimacy. 

The first thing Alexander did upon crossing into Asia was thrust his spear into the Earth. “The Zeus of the Macedonians let the king keep any land he conquered, provided that he plunged his spear into land to be invaded and then captured it,” Namian writes. Other cultures had similar practices. In Germanic mythology, the first war in history began when Óðinn threw his spear into the ranks of the enemy. Later Germanic armies would begin battle by throwing a spear at the enemy and crying, “Odin owns you all” symbolically sacrificing the enemies to their god, but also justifying the slaughter to come. Livy chronicles an elaborate method the ancient Romans used to declare war. They explained to the gods why their actions were just and then plunged a javelin tipped with steel or blood into enemy soil. This done, the gods presumably justified the war.

Once in Asia, Alexander didn’t immediately pursue a military objective. Instead, he made a pilgrimage to the ruins of Troy and offered sacrifice. Alexander thought he was descended from Hercules but also from Achilles, and so he felt he must appease the spirit of King Priam, Achilles’s enemy. He vowed to build a new shrine. Before he first confronted the Persian Army, Alexander waited to make sure his actions were in alignment with the “sacred calendar.” He also prayed in a way Namian calls a “legal brief,” justifying his actions. Instead of bringing gods along, the way a modern army brings chaplains, the Macedonians appeased the spirits already there. The world was sacred, and each place had its gods. More importantly, Zeus was still present.

In the Battle of the Grancius, Alexander led his Companion cavalry from the front. After the victory, he built statues to the fallen Companions at Troy (as well as one of himself). He also portrayed this victory, which gave him half of Asia Minor, as a victory for “the Greeks,” even though more Greeks fought against him (as mercenaries) then for him. Alexander didn’t just consider himself a champion of divine justice on a religious pilgrimage, but the legitimate leader of an entire people, the Greek nation. When his army moved through the newly conquered territory, Alexander rebuilt shrines, spoke to priests, and participated in local rituals—occasionally reshaping them to his own ends, like when he cut the famous Gordian Knot. 

Sometimes, though they recognized the gods, his Macedonians viewed lordship differently than Middle Eastern kings who had ruled before. One inscription from Nebuchadnezzar brags Marduk (whom the Greeks associated with Zeus) gave him people to rule that he let “lie in safe pastures.” “The Macedonians would not have understood this image of a human flock,” Naiden writes. “Sheep were offerings, not human beings.” Still, what allowed the Macedonians to conquer and rule was that they associated local deities as simply different forms of their own gods. Even in far away places, psychologically, their gods were with them. 

The second great victory of Alexander over the Persians was at Issus. After the battle, as was customary, the king presided over cremating the dead. Then, he ordered funeral games held to honor them. Finally, he built altars to Zeus, Athena, and Hercules at the place where he had sacrificed before the battle. They endured for centuries; Cicero visited about 200 years later. 

Entire military operations centered on what we might think of as religious technicalities. The siege of Tyre took place because the city’s rulers refused to let Alexander sacrifice at a temple to Melkart, whom Alexander identified with Hercules. They knew that if he did that at a certain time, Alexander would become king. It seems crazy to modern people, but Alexander’s war in Asia was a war about securing religious legitimacy. Similarly, in Egypt, Alexander became Pharaoh. He identified Amon with Zeus.

Was this all just cynical nonsense? It’s true that Alexander would offer priests financial help and they, in turn, might tell them what he wanted to hear. 

Yet then it’s hard to explain the dangerous pilgrimage to Siwah, an isolated shrine. Alexander and some of his top generals traveled there, almost getting killed in the process. They got lost and almost starved until, according to court historians, snakes or crows intervened and led them to safety. From a modern perspective, Alexander’s actions make no sense. They were counter-productive militarily. Today, they might seem completely insane. 

But they make sense from the perspective of a man who thought he was on a religious mission. His officers evidently thought it was important enough for them to join too. Alexander heard at Siwah what he wanted—he was the son of Zeus. While in Egypt, he also built the great city of Alexandria—and a cult for himself as founder. 

Alexander’s greatest victory was at Gaugamela. Before this battle he sacrificed to the god Panic, asking him to visit the enemy. Panic evidently did. After the victory, Alexander moved to Babylon, legitimizing his rule by becoming king and aligning himself with the local priests.  Yet the farther away he moved from home, the harder it became for him to reconcile all these idiosyncratic religious traditions. He was paying homage to gods that sometimes warred with each other. 

He also couldn’t simultaneously be the warrior king of the Macedonians and head of the Companions while adopting Persian trappings. Tensions rose even within the Companions after a brutal military campaign against Central Asian steppe tribes, a form of a war the Macedonians weren’t accustomed to. This unrest culminated when a drunken Alexander, enraged by the taunts of one of his closest friends, Clitus, stabbed him to death. Ultimately, the only way the army and officers reconciled themselves to going on was by blaming the entire incident on Dionysus. 

The problems got worse when the army pushed into India, where Alexander desperately tried to relate local gods to ones the Macedonians knew, usually unsuccessfully. He even initiated a defeated Indian king into the Companions. 

Eventually, Alexander’s army eventually refused to go further. Like Achilles, Alexander sulked in his tent, to no avail. He took omens three times—the maximum allowed—and every time they were bad. Had they been good, he might well have ordered the army onward. The fighting wasn’t over; Alexander was almost killed in a battle over an Indian city. Thinking their king was dead, his men wept and strained to touch him when they learned he was alive. His person had become sacred. 

After a difficult march back east, Alexander organized a huge sacrifice and himself imitated Dionysus. This delighted his men; “they had recovered their king.” Later, when he was again faced with unrest with from within the Macedonian camp, Alexander used his usual tactic of withdrawing from the men. He later emerged to shame his men, declaring he had shared all their sacrifices and paid their debts. He also didn’t refer to Zeus-Amon as his father, but Philip. Mortified, his men begged forgiveness. 

The idea that Alexander dreamed of “uniting all the races of the world in a Universal Empire” is not true; he was building a Macedonian/Persian ruling class, and even this was proving difficult because of cultural and religious barriers. The Macedonians wanted a Homeric hero as their war chief, not an Eastern potentate. Naiden judges that near the end, “Alexander had forsaken the cult that helped the king and his companions share risk and rewards.”

We will never know if Alexander could have successfully solved the contradictions of his governing his polyglot empire. He died at age 32 after days of drinking in the Macedonian fashion, and his death was proceeded by bad omens and warnings from priests. His last act was to rise from his sickbed and make sacrifice in Babylon. After death, even many of those who doubted his divinity embraced his godhood. Even his body became something of a relic—Ptolemy essentially stole it during its funeral procession and housed it in a sarcophagus in Alexandria, legitimizing his own dynasty, which would endure until Cleopatra, Mark Antony and Augustus. 

The dead Alexander was given homage by great men for centuries afterward, including Augustus. His empire fragmented; the wars of the Diadochi lasted for centuries, with everyone claiming Alexander’s legacy. “The cult of the Companions,” Namian writes, “was broken.” The Romans would eventually claim most of Alexander’s empire. Ultimately, he faced the same problem of any effective conqueror or religious leader; the very qualities that make an empire or religion able to spread are undermined once it spreads too far. Had Alexander not died when he did, he likely would have faced rebellions for the rest of his reign, probably (maybe even especially) in Greece. It’s ironic today he is celebrated as a Greek hero, because many Greek cities at the time thought him a tyrant.

What lessons can we learn from this man who conquered the known world while barely an adult? The key to his victories was not just the professional army he inherited from his father and his own innate genius. There was also the institution of the Companions, the cult that drove the army forward, mitigated disputes, and created a culture of fanatic devotion between officers and the “foot companions” of the infantry. Most importantly, Alexander was conscious of himself as participating in sacred events. The Homeric heroes were not of scholarly interest; they were his ancestors, people to emulate, people he could emulate and maybe even surpass. At his best, he acted in unison with his gods, his cult, and his army. 

The greatest lesson Alexander the Great teaches is to Live The Myth. Act in such a way that you are aligned with your spirituality, your true will, and what you see as the heroes of your culture. Live in such a way that your life is a work of art—or a saga. 

What separates “living the myth” from simply LARPing? The answer is danger. A LARPer can walk away from whatever story he’s telling himself and go back into modernity. One who Lives The Myth lets it define him. The tribes and orders springing up across the Hollow Empire are real, because those who have joined them believe in them and will fight for them.  

Sadly, it’s no longer possible to join with a few hundred of your best friends and conquer the known world. Or is it?

Achieving great deeds, testing yourself daily, building a tribe (or joining one), and creating something that can endure against this shit world of concrete and lies—these are all things that can be done today. The world does not have to be this way—and if the life of Alexander shows anything, it’s the impact one man can have. 

Create your own saga with your own Companions. Plant your spear into the Earth. It is yours by right of conquest—if you have the courage to do what is necessary. 

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Of Wolf Heads and Black Banners


Recently, social media has decided that the white wolf head on a sea of black, the emblem worn on my tribe, the Wolves, back patch, is officially a “hate symbol.”

This week, images in which it appears have begun to be purged from their various platforms.


I’m sure it won’t be long before they follow suit with the Totenwolf, a symbol which at this point is recognizable around the world by those in the know as the banner under which this Operation marches.


Often times in situations like these, people seem to react with a sort of victimized indignance, a kind of “how dare they?!” or “we did nothing wrong!” approach, but this is incorrect.


We did do something “wrong.” Everything that we do is “wrong” to this world, this age in which we live.


The training of our bodies and minds, the rejection of the values embraced by the current popular agendas of the day, the clanning together in small intentional communities in order to foster pressure and support one another’s endeavors- all of these things exist on the fringe, somewhere out on the perimeter of accepted behavior by today’s power structure and social narratives.


Anyone living by the tenets of Operation Werewolf, truly embracing the simple philosophy put forth in the Manifesto and elsewhere, is someone who is “not of this world,” or a voluntary outlaw from polite society and the current virtue signaling police state.


This is the very reason our tribe, the Wolves, chose the white wolf’s head on a black banner to represent our stance, and why Operatives world wide wear the wolf skull, surrounded by Jormungandr, the world serpent.


The two are connected- and though the Wolves came first, Operation Werewolf has fed and bolstered it, and has also been instrumental in the creation of other “wolf cults” around the world, and the spark that the Wolves rekindled has since become a series of beacons, brightly burning around the world. 


We choose to be in the “woods,” both literally and figuratively, taking our “forest passage” away from the grey banality of modern monoculture and its suffocating walls.


I’ve said it before, and it bears repeating- being an outlaw in this day and age has nothing to do with wearing black clothes and getting lots of tattoos, or embracing a “hard” image- that is a simple aesthetic choice.


It is about a wholehearted rejection of what this world has to offer- their comfortable goals and vain virtues, their pre-packaged dinners and dreams, their call to “Fill the Void With Luxury.” 


We have seen what the crumbling cities of men have to offer, heard the hiss of politician and celebrity “tastemaker,” prophets of the New Babylon disguised as harmless comedians or talking heads- and we have seen it for what it is.


A handful of dust.


We have cast our eyes back on this world as we walk from it, seeing the glittering lights and the warm hearth fires, illusion and comfort beckoning us back from a cold and often lonesome path, but we remain resolute in our direction- steadfast in our choices to widen the gap between wolf and man. 


We spit on our hands and raise the black flag in the wilderness, and build fires of our own.


We assemble, and gather, and out in the forest, a whisper is slowly rising to a roaring.


Raise the banner. Stoke the flame. Be a wolf.


Wargus Esto!

Due to the constant censorship and bans we have incurred on Instagram, we have shifted our main broadcast format to Telegram. 

Simply download the app, and click the link below to subscribe– our Channel is sort of like our new Instagram, where content is posted, and our Group is a group message where myself and hundreds of Operatives around the world converse and share information- you’ll be given the option and instructions to sign up for whichever you like, or both.

No contract or hidden fees, subscription drops unless you manually resub each month, or choose yearly for a discount and reduced hassle. 

Looking forward to seeing some of you there.