Philippe Roy on the Cathars

I just discovered a website which represents a Traditionalist (Guenon,Schuon,Evola,Pallis,Ware etc. Traditionalist) take on the Cathars and their lasting influence on modernity.

Religio Perennis is a website which gives an overview of the Perennialist School of philosophy and its approach to many traditions – not only from the Christian and Abrahamite religions.

It even has its own section on the Cathar Tradition.

The section is comprised chiefly of excerpts from a book by Philippe Roy which has been translated by Patricia Reynaud.

A longer excerpt titled “Katharis and Gnosis in Catharism” discusses the importance of katharsis, purification, on the path of the Cathars. This is his introduction to the topic:

Purification as a means to receive spiritual baptism was an active element of Cathar spirituality. Purification followed a progression and was upheld by several vehicles, described in the first chapter. Truly it was a progression toward a spiritual awakening.

It was based upon two principles: the development of a gnosis and an inner metamorphosis.

No access to baptism was possible without a previous katharsis and an authenticated ripening of spiritual aptitude. Cathar initiation was not meant to form a cleric but to give rise to a genuine Christian, one proven along his path. In the same way that spiritual baptism was the very heart of Catharism, katharsis remained the concept that best summarized its unfolding. The name “Catharism” thus comes from the Greek word for “purification.” For the adept, the meaning and the goal of Katharsis were