Confessions of a Radical Traditionalist by John Michell Dr. Colette M. Dowell reviews.

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John Michell Confessions of a Radical Traditionalist Colette Dowell Review

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Essays by John Michell Selected and

Introduced by Joscelyn Godwin

Dominion Press, 2005, ISBN 0-9712044-4-6


Review by  

Colette M. Dowell © 2005


          I am always pleased to read a book that brings me joy and educates me in some sort of fashion leaving me on a greater note of happiness, and more “in tune” one might say. For those who follow John Michell’s writings as well as those of you who are new to him, "Confessions of a Radical Traditionalist" is a witty anthology of John’s great ability to ascertain truths and speak frankly about his observations. Joscelyn Godwin brilliantly introduces John’s character with candor conveying his innermost qualities of an ingenious soul. Joscelyn carefully and thematically arranged 108 of John’s essays spanning a 10-year period of contributions to The Oldie. John stands out as a Platonist, an innately wise man, and a soft tender person who longs for the return of the

“Enchantment of Paradise”.


          Confessions of a Radical Traditionalist reveals John Michell’s insights and how we can benefit from his knowledge. John is a philosopher professing intelligent, spiritual day-to-day techniques to live, love and cope in this modern madness we call society.  Among John’s greatest teachers you will find Plato, Saints, Gods and Gypsies, closely followed by Daemons, Druggies, Bums and Thieves.  John writes of ancient roots grounded in the enchantment and beauty of Paradise; a sacred place where one can live freely, happy and full of love. His faith is such, as to take you back to the times when harmonious minds sat “around” on a four-cornered hearthstone focusing center into the flame, sharing personal thoughts and dwelling within the Cosmos.  

          The gist of what Michell writes brings to light the dark ages we live in and the unjust ways of the elite in organizing propaganda to stupefy mankind’s brain and hinder our soul from reaching a higher level of divine order. He points out how we are held and bound in ignorance contributing to the creation of chaos and will continue to do so until we are able to elevate our understandings of the higher realms of spirit and divine order.         

          Early people’s values held steadfast the very fabric of their society. Music and numbers were the keys to harmony and contentment in life where one lived in divine union with spirit. Essays by John Michell Selected and Introduced by Joscelyn GodwinDominion Press, 2005, ISBN 0-9712044-4-6
Divine intervention takes place when specific numerical and geometrical functions produce sacred proportions manifesting natural order and balance. Tradition of harmony was once taught in abundance and life was lived with freedom of expression and in tune with nature. Music was plentiful and rituals and shrines were precisely staged and aligned. Craftsman, Artists, Musicians and Philosophers were the builders and keepers of Paradise. To live in Paradise as the Land of Enchantment, one must recognize the unity of love and logic proportionally unified and centered in the Cosmos.  

          John’s nostalgia for Paradise holds true to that beauty where Platonic philosophies were practiced and communities were happy, content, and danced to their own rhythm. Music and song were the governing factors and on a political level, music correlating to sacred numbers and harmonies remained by way of Choirs singing throughout the lands. Leaders of the lands were numerically chosen to create council, community and culture that demonstrated harmoniously divine order and were in tune with the Cosmos; thusly Paradise was maintained and held in balance. 

          Since the onset of “New Men” and their coming with their mechanistic tools and mindless techno tasks, life once lived and known to be good and divine, has rotted and entered into the realm of Hell. There was once a truer beauty and all was well in Paradise. People had greens of mountains and hillsides, clear colorful skies and stars; gardens were full of fresh food for the hungry and Fairies abounded. People were happy and life was prosperous, people lived full lives filled with wisdom. Now in modern times we have hatched up hillsides, dry lands of waste and nasty chemicals in our food. We get bombarded by strange looking UFOs and get abducted by Aliens instead of flirting with Fairies. Our whole modern mindset has changed and not for the better.  

          We should be experiencing the Enchantment of Paradise not Hell on Earth, which in some instances we humans are responsible for creating. One needs to practice sacred principles to live true in divine order. To quote John, “There is a way of thinking that is both idealistic and rooted in common sense.  It is called radical-traditionalism.” 

          Simply written, the 108 essays are individual lessons on God, Divine Proportion, the value of morals, use of discernment and good common sense blended with legends, history and humor. They also reflect a sufficient amount of reasonable solutions to the most absurd situations and bizarre dilemmas. There are even essays regarding emotional and mental health issues exposing how sometimes even the weirdest and most evil people can still articulate good, sound and reasonable advice. Some very famous controversial and scary individuals are ironically represented in some instances as being quite sane and divinely manifested souls. It is in John’s opinion that Daemons are the cause of some of the madness in this world, and their spirits inspire psychotic individuals and irrational behavior.  

           Confessions of a Radical Traditionalist is great therapy for those who suffer from not knowing what is going on and what it all really means. John writes so smooth and well you naturally and comfortably absorb his wit and wisdom. He shares his brilliant insights on how to deal with the monotonous, meaningless, day-to-day dumb-drums and beastly boogies. You can learn to dance, sing, create art, be happy and love as a remedy to the Beast and its machine. Somewhat like good rules to live by, yet they are not rules; they are harmonically proportioned divinely ordered principles not to be changed depending on the game. These principles create the reality we live in, and are responsible for the beauty, love, joy and wisdom found in the state of Enchantment, which is Paradise. Paradise is an ideology of perfection in all which it encumbers. Re-creating Paradise is a better alternative than having to live with the Earth burning up and all Hell breaking loose while blood sucking Daemons are awaiting to possess your very soul and take over the world. 

          John likes to tell it as he sees and feels it. In his words you will read truths and scenarios that reap irony and satire, he humorously exposes the evils and gets on with the good. He is right on and quite funny at times. You will also receive an education on many historical issues that you probably have not been exposed to because they are seldom discussed. John reveals science as an enigma and the paranormal and occult as rational and ideal. Confessions of a Radical Traditionalist is the perfect home remedy for this irrational world we are living in.  John sets examples of what to do and what not to do in order to create harmoniously proportioned realms so one can live and experience the Enchantment of Paradise. Confessions of a Radical Traditionalist is a delightful summation of John’s philosophical wit, logical intellect and his generous soulful loving heart.         

       As John states, he dwells in Quietness now and the stillness and wisdom it brings awaiting the return of Paradise. He is an Oldie man, a Traditionalist who is radical in the sense that he stands up for his truths and convictions against the utmost ignorance, irrational behavior, and bigoted bellowing madness. He is good.  

          The book is a masterfully crafted cloth covered hardbound of museum quality, designed with sacred proportions with the dust jacket displaying an original portrait of John by Maxwell Armfield and uniquely original geometric artwork by John Michell.


by Colette M. Dowell


The 108 essays in this volume have been carefully selected and introduced by Joscelyn Godwin, a long-time admirer of John Michell’s work and himself an acknowledged authority in matters esoteric and metaphysical.


John Michell was born in London in 1933 and educated at Eton and Trinity College, Cambridge. His early books,  “The Flying Saucer Vision” (1967) and “The View Over Atlantis” (1969), exposed new generations to the lost wisdom and sacred sciences of the ancient world. His voluminous subsequent writings have chronicled forgotten eccentrics and illuminated the mysterious worlds of crop circles, ley lines, simulacra in nature, Stonehenge, and sacred geometry. Some of his recent works include “At the Center of the World: Polar Symbolism Discovered in Celtic, Norse and Other Ritualized Landscapes” (1994), “The Temple at Jerusalem: A Revelation” (2000), and “The Measure of Albion” (with Robin Heath, 2004). An exhibit of his geometrical and other watercolour paintings was held in London in 2003 at the Christopher Gibbs Gallery. He lives in Notting Hill, London.


“Refreshingly original, yet genuinely grounded in tradition. John Michell is wise, mischievous and amusing. He has expanded the frontiers of British sanity, and enriches the lives of those who know him and his works.”

-- Rupert Sheldrake


“Forget trepanning. John Michell opened my third eye years ago. His revelations and the mysteries he touches upon are in my head forever -- life would be dead dull and probably impossible without this extra and true dimension.”

-- Candida Lycett Green


Dominion Press is Proud to Announce the Publication of





Selected and Introduced by Joscelyn Godwin


Clothbound, sewn signatures, with full-color dustjacket

5 3/4" x 9 1/4"; 352 + xxi pages


Dominion, 2005, $34.00

ISBN 0-9712044-4-6


The book itself is beautifully typeset and produced, making use of traditional design and sacred measurements. The cover features a stunning tempera portrait of John Michell painted in 1972, by Maxwell Armfield (1881-1972), as well as artwork by Michell himself.


CONFESSIONS OF A RADICAL TRADITIONALIST may be ordered for $38 which includes priority first-class shipping to anywhere in the USA. Foreign orders are $43 and include priority airmail. Checks or money orders may be sent to:



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