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The Benighted Path by Richard Gavin

by Gwynevere Kipling



Night, as it existed in the time before time, before the Word, was complete. It was the macrocosmic expression of soul and body harmonious, the ecstatic whirl of Becoming. This state of Becoming does not have a static realization, a moment of completion. It is the flux, the flow of the dark rivers.” – Richard Gavin


There will always be those to whom the dark is more of a draw than sunlit groves and transcendental pathways to something regarded as higher, to whom the tangled knots of thorned roots barring and alongside the pathway is a welcome challenge to overcome rather than to take an easier path or one that seeks to be made without obstacle, and to whom the shiver of dread-awe down the spine is more welcome and deeply moving rather than something to avoid and flee from.


‘The Benighted Path’ by Richard Gavin is an esoteric work that is to be drawn from and experienced as much as it is to be read. It is a book to dedicate the time to read and to savour as much as it is to read when the inspiration strikes, when a particular passage or subject within is tugging on the mind to read and engage. What each person takes from the Night-driven words and what they confront will be individual, offering a dynamic and shifting serpentine course to tread.


“…the Night Primeval courses through vacant city streets, pools within places of neglect. But never is it more immediately realized that in the Wilderness that manifests in the physical world as Nature and within human beings as the act of dreaming.” – p. 31


Dreaming, waking and otherwise, is a balm for the crushing weight of the enforced necessity of working that otherwise risks burning out and charring the imagination within, contrary to so many innate rhythms that the body would fall itself into if allowed. To find the space and time for wanderings of the mind, to carve out precious energy for explorations of the path within as much as out, is precious and cherished. Whether it is a handful of moments between shifts and their aftermath to shut the eyes and let the mind wander, to sudden ideas that strike like the searing, scorching power of a thunderclap, leaving a lasting impression, demanding to be pried out from the depths and given air, moments where the imagination is uncaged and the reigns loosened to bay and howl, these moments are scale-balancing and savage both.


These are the moments spoken of within the pages of this volume, heartily encouraged. Moments spoken of within tales of warning and horror, the sort of stories traded around campfires. But it is a path willingly trod, and to work with what is encountered and experienced is terrifying and arousing all in one, in a manner beyond articulation.


‘The Benighted Path’ is a work that stands in steadfast contrast to the solar and to the transcendental. I would definitely advise giving it a read to those who do not find there to be a draw in raising aloft, in seeking to evolve beyond and instead who take comfort in the lived moments and in integrating oneself within their present, and the eager exchange and interchange with the surrounding wildness. This is not a losing of oneself but the beginning of the potential to discover the interplay between external influences and internal experiences that combine in a truly unique way. It is a prompt to experience without trying to label or to rationalise. This is less of a review and more a personal offering of recommendation, to help spread the word of this book to those who might be drawn to such an embodied approach to being. It is succinct to encourage investigation while offering hopefully enough to draw in. The curious can purchase this work through Theion Publishing - https://theionpublishing.com/shop/bnp2ed/.


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