The Secret History of Western Esotericism Podcast has posted an episode featuring occult scholar Sasha Chaitow discussing Josephin Peladan. Peladan was one of the leading lights of the French Occult Revival that occurred around the turn of the last century. The posted description says:
“Joséphin Péladan (1858-1918) is a fascinating character. He was a prominent – notorious in some circles – critic, novelist, and Occultist writer in his own day, universally talked-about in his native France, but with a fair reach outside the Francophone world as well. Nowadays, however, he seems to have slipped off the radar of mass consciousness (a state of affairs likely to be rectified to some extent by Dr Chaitow’s forthcoming book).
“Pêladan was one of the primary movers of the Paris Occultist scene of the fin-de siècle, a time when Occultism in many forms was, for a brief cultural moment, front-page news in a way paralleled perhaps only by the ‘spiritual seeker’ culture of modern California. His Rosicrucian salons brought western esotericism into an intriguing new configuration vis à vis artistic culture more generally, and paved the way not only for, e.g. Crowley’s Rites of Eleusis, but the whole ‘sixties ‘happening’ culture. His barbed criticism of realism in art constituted a strong voice in favour of the kinds of search for meaning and enchantment common to late nineteenth century esotericism more generally. He had an extraordinary, heretical emenatory cosmology full of angel-artist Nephilim and human artist-demigods seeking to return to the divine world through spiritual evolution.
“His hair was extraordinary throughout.”