Life in a small town

The Four Freedoms … where are we now?

Feeling kinda down today. Just realized that our churches aren’t opening for business any time soon, if ever again, no matter what the government mouthpieces are saying. Because we have the new “Bishop approved guidelines”.

No singing, no touching, no drinking, no more than 50 people including ministers, only pre-approved cleared by the parish office attendees, and requiring check in before Mass. The the limited number of people who made appointments must check-in at the entrance, like we used to do with airline flights.

And then, when it’s finished, they require the active disinfection of the entire church after every Mass (pre-arranged by appointment with no more than 50 people at Mass), and that would require hiring a work crew or volunteers in numbers approximating attendees at any given service or Mass all of whom would have to follow the same guidelines.

But Bars, Restaurants, Nightclubs, Hockey rinks, Campgrounds, and parks and so on and so forth are ok with a little control of the numbers attending, I think it is currently 50% occupancy.

My last post referenced another post from Mark Mallett titled “Our 1942”. In the same vein, chronologically, here is some more observations about themes and goals of our “governments” over a couple of generations, and Courtesy of the Wickedpedia, here are some references to a classic moment of “good intentions” the result of which we have seen play out over the last 80 years.

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Freedom of Speech (Saturday, February 20, 1943) — from the Four Freedoms series by Norman Rockwell

The Four Freedoms Speech was given on January 6, 1941. Roosevelt’s hope was to provide a rationale for why the United States should abandon the isolationist policies that emerged from World War I. In the address, Roosevelt critiqued Isolationism, saying:

Freedom of Worship (Saturday, February 27, 1943) — from the Four Freedoms series by Norman Rockwell

“No realistic American can expect, from a dictator’s peace, international generosity, or return of true independence, or world disarmament, or freedom of expression, or freedom of religion–or even good business.

Such a peace would bring no security for us or for our neighbors. “Those, who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.[5]

Freedom from Want (Saturday, March 6, 1943) — from the Four Freedoms series by Norman Rockwell

“In the future days, which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential human freedoms.

The first is freedom of speech and expression—everywhere in the world.

The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way—everywhere in the world.

Freedom from Fear (Saturday, March 13, 1943) — from the Four Freedoms series by Norman Rockwell

The third is freedom from want—which, translated into world terms, means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants—everywhere in the world.

The fourth is freedom from fear—which, translated into world terms, means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbor—anywhere in the world.

That is no vision of a distant millennium. It is a definite basis for a kind of world attainable in our own time and generation. That kind of world is the very antithesis of the so-called new order of tyranny which the dictators seek to create with the crash of a bomb.

— Franklin D. Roosevelt, excerpted from the State of the Union Address to the Congress, January 6, 1941″
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So, 80 years on, how are we doing … we short sighted boiled frogs in the big pan of our Progressive New World Order? Roosevelt delivered his speech, his Four Freedoms speech, 11 months before the surprise Japanese attack on U.S. forces in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii that caused the United States to declare war on Japan, December 8, 1941.

Just to give us a little clarity and context, I repeat, the “Four Freedoms” were goals articulated by United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt on Monday, January 6, 1941. In Roosevelt’s address, which became known as the “Four Freedoms speech” (technically the 1941 State of the Union address), he proposed four fundamental freedoms that people “everywhere in the world” ought to enjoy. That was “everybody, everywhere” that he was talking about. So let’s articulate these four freedoms as best we can:

1. Freedom of speech:  is a principle that supports the freedom of an individual or a community to articulate their opinions and ideas without fear of retaliation, censorship, or legal sanction. The term “freedom of expression” is sometimes used synonymously but includes any act of seeking, receiving, and imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used.  Freedom of expression is recognized as a human right under article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and recognized in international human rights law in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

Article 19 of the UDHR states that “everyone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference” and “everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of his choice”.

BUT  the version of Article 19 in the ICCPR later amends this by stating that the exercise of these rights carries “special duties and responsibilities” and may “therefore be subject to certain restrictions” when necessary “or respect of the rights or reputation of others” … “or the protection of national security or of public order (order public), or of public health, or morals”.[3]

2. Freedom of worship:  is a principle that supports the freedom of an individual or community, in public or private, to manifestreligion or beliefin teaching, practice, worship, and observance. It also includes the freedom to change one’s religion or beliefs[1] and to be absent of any religious beliefs.[2]  Freedom of religion is considered by many people and most of the nations to be a fundamentalhuman right.[3][4]

In a country with a state religion, freedom of religion is generally considered to mean that the government permits religious practices of other sects besides the state religion, and does not persecute believers in other faiths.

Freedom of belief is different. It allows the right to believe what a person, group or religion wishes, but it does not necessarily allow the right to practice the religion or belief openly and outwardly in a public manner, a central facet of religious freedom.[5]

3. Freedom from want: Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control. — Article 25.1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights[1]

Furthermore, it has been written down in article 11 of the United Nations’ International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.  The predecessor of this right, the Freedom from Want, is one of the Four Freedoms that American President Franklin D. Roosevelt spoke out at his State of the Union of January 6, 1941.

4. Freedom from fear:  translated into world terms, means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbor—anywhere in the world.”

So that is my understanding of these terms as accepted by our society circa 1940. Just so we are clear on what we are talking about as we go on.

But the legislation, treaties, rules and regulations and “covenants have been amended over the decades so that these days they receive lip service only. No one seriously believes in the “Four Freedoms”  as “practical” ideals or goals.

I do not believe that we, as a society, are remotely close to that ideal any longer and have not been for at least two, maybe 3 decades. I believe that our polite society currently occupies the same moral position held by the axis powers and the Communist regimes in 1940 and conducts themselves pretty much the same way although with more sophistication and less bombing.

So far, in terms of rights and freedoms, our polite progressive society, our people, have willingly and complicitly completely given up Freedom of Speech and Expression.

In other words … currently in our culture, our “free society”, our Freedom of Speech and Expression only extends to those who are agreeable to the national view or the views currently fashionable in Social Media narratives … this includes such modern tools of oppression as “Political Correctness”, “Human Rights Tribunals” (Canada) and extensive censorship of social media engines and search engines by those who own and/or control the media.

Freedom of Worship, well, enough said there … just when was the last time you went to church even if you wanted to and why are there such stringent restrictions on how churches can “re-open” way more stringent than there are on bars, nightclubs and campgrounds?  And why are the bishops going along with all this? Isn’t it plainly obvious that the state has no use for churches … that they are “Just the opiate of the masses”, according to G.B. Shaw and Uncle Joe Stalin, and virtually every Progressive since. A world with no God is a world with no good.

Then, there is Freedom from Fear. Can any one honestly say that we are not a herd of whimpering terrified cowards hiding under our beds for fear of catching a “deadly” disease which has killed less victims per-capita than any other flu epidemic in history?

The latest numbers from the CDC seem to indicate a 0.28% fatality rate for victims of COVID-19 (aka Red Bat Flu). No Freedom from Fear around our world these days, and its the governments and media whipping it up, creating a Pandemic of Control, doing it to us, right?  BOHICA! Or, in a metaphor from the Vietnam War:  “PULL OUT???? Hell no!  Stay in and get the job done!”  It’s all about the second wave now, right?

And finally, we are in the process of heading full steam ahead into giving up Freedom from Want as we speak. It’s the Economy, Stupid!  Just where do people think they are going to spend their 50 cent dollar $2000.00 a month COVID-19 government checks?

And what else do people know about using their time  but to spend it spending everything they have  and more than they can afford? And while we are at it, why are suicide rates starting to rise in many places that never had that problem before? Anyone? Anyone?

Empty shelves and closed stores are a hallmark specialty of all progressive socialist regimes wherever and whenever they spring up. The old Soviet empire, China, North Korea, Venezuela, and so on and so forth.

Squalor and poverty  and misery for the majority of the masses is the “normal” human condition whenever and wherever godless totalitarian regimes hold power.

Net migration rates for 2016: positive (blue), negative (orange), stable (green), and no data (gray)

Why do folks suppose that China (for example) doesn’t have an immigration problem, why do socialist regimes everywhere close their borders to prevent emigration? Check out the graphic on the right.

Where are people going to go when the whole world is equally savage, poor, oppressed and imprisoned in their squalor. And while I am at it, I wonder why the old Soviet Union is blue in that graphic when it was orange for a century.

Where the hell do folks think “paychecks” come from? Where the hell does all that government “revenue” come from?

Well if you believe Netflix and Social Media it just comes from taxing “Rich” people … which seems to mean “anyone who actually works for a living” rather than getting a paycheck from some government program, either as an “employee” or as a “client”. So tell me, where did the saying “They pretend to pay us and we pretend to work” come from?  Anyone?  Anyone? Da Comrade, we know the truth don’t we.

The light at the end of the tunnel is a workers paradise of equal outcomes for everyone except the Ultra-rich elite.  Sigh!  I will end with a couple of quotes;

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One of the most dangerous errors is that civilization is automatically bound to increase and spread. The lesson of history is the opposite; civilization is a rarity, attained with difficulty and easily lost. The normal state of humanity is barbarism, just as the normal surface of the planet is salt water.

Land looms large in our imagination and civilization in history books, only because sea and savagery are to us less interesting.” — C. S. Lewis

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“Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded—here and there, now and then—are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

“This is known as ‘bad luck’. ” – Robert A. Heinlein

*****

And finally another quote from the same speech that gave us “The Four Freedoms”: “Those, who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety“. Franklin D. Roosevelt, excerpted from the State of the Union Address to the Congress, January 6, 1941

Cheers?  Not so much just now, still looking for the silver lining.

Joe

Founder of The Communist Party of China greets one of the bright lights of the Communist Party of Canada. The 1970’s were so much fun.

His Master’s Voice …
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Life in a small town

Suffering … Quality of Life …

You Have The Communist Flu! Quarantine! Quarantine!

By the sound of things there is a whole lot of suffering going on … just listen to anyone, all eager to share their suffering, all the while desperately trying not to sneeze, or cough, or sniffle because we have all slid into being terrified lest we find ourselves featured in the final scene of “Invasion Of The Body Snatchers” .

… I’M FINE! … I’M FINE! I AM JUST SHOPPING FOR FRIENDS. Now we are finding out who actually has friends and who has e-friends, or  maybe iFriends … but iFriends can’t go do your shopping for you and deliver in person.

In Canada we have, for decades now,  been receiving the daily message, dressed up in Health Care lingo, that “It’s OK for us to kill you if you have no political voice and your existence is inconvenient or, even,  your in the wrong place at the wrong time“. In the last few years a new message has been added to this steady drone, that new message being the steady drumbeat of “It’s OK to kill yourself if you are unhappy with your “Quality of Life“.

Now, the “In Crowd” think is great to have set up a “Living Will” to instruct any Canadian Doctor to kill them if they are admitted into hospital, “suffering and with low quality of life”, and are unable to verbally instruct medical staff as to their desires at that moment.  I have had this “discussion” with some of my own family members who have converted to this new cult from their previous affiliation of “Atheist”.

We can see all sorts of interesting spin-offs from this desire to avoid suffering at any cost, including “Kill Me, Please!”, co-existing simultaneously with very expensive “preserve life” protocols active in our current national “Health Care System”. A very interesting article was posted a couple of days ago on Dr. Malcolm Kendrick’s blog here.  This post is well worth the read and gives much food for thought. Will the real cost of the COVID-19, the Red Flu, be the loss of civil liberty and the removal of any protections in law for the more defenseless members of our society.

I can easily imagine a fertile, high yield, farm of bureaucratic rationalization of draconian health related decisions, all driven by ROE and sounding rather like what Dr. Kendrick relates:

…”we should focus on doing things whereby we can do the most good (save the most lives) for the least possible amount of money. Or use the money we have, to save the most lives. In fact, this is why the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) was established. NICE reviews interventions and decides whether they provide value for money. The economic term for this is cost-effectiveness. This work is complex and often relies on assumptions that can be difficult to verify. However, keeping this as simple as possible, NICE tries to compare healthcare interventions against each other by using a form of ‘currency’ called the cost per QALY.  A QALY is a Quality Adjusted Life Year. One added year of the highest quality life would be one QALY.

C.S. Lewis

It seems C. S. Lewis touched on exactly what we are witnessing before our very eyes. In That Hideous Strength: A Modern Fairy-Tale for Grown-Ups”, first published in 1945, he breathes life into these ideas in a primary character of the book, in his description of the aggressive vision of the scientific group called N. I. C. E. (The National Institute for Coordinated Experiments), and in his attribution of N. I. C. E.’s views and actions to the demons, or … “devilry.”

You really should read the post from Dr. Kendrick, and the C. S. Lewis article. As you inevitably walk or crawl or are wheeled or dragged down the ever narrowing path of life to your natural demise, what will you choose?  What choices will be thrust upon you? Will you get your rightly allotted number of “Quality Adjusted Life Years“, your entitled QALY’s? Or will you find yourselves among those who end up on the wrong side of the committee and their review, on the wrong side of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). That secretly constituted, minute-less meeting of faceless corner-office 3 piece suites who, as the legal servants of  “NICE”, regularly review interventions and decide whether they provide value for money.

Will we look back from our crematorium jobs, during our mandatory 10 minute water break, and wistfully remember “The Good Old Days” before 2020 and COVID-19? “Remember the days before the Red Flu? Gee, things sure were good then, remember?

Cheers

Joe

its all so crazy making …

 

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Life in a small town

Incarnation and Resurrection … reality and fantasy and Happy New Year?

This post was supposed to come out the day after New Years Day but took much longer to write than I anticipated. Sometimes one spends more time thinking about how to say what one is thinking about than in the actual writing of it. Can’t be helped.

The gateway to Belief is flanked and supported by the two pillars of reality, the Incarnation and the Resurrection supporting the lintel of Faith … how can one express such a reality to any person confined to, imprisoned in, secular material reality? “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy”. ( Hamlet (1.5.167-8), Hamlet to Horatio). But how are we to describe color to the blind or music to the deaf?

Much of what we learn in life, what makes up our daily lives and the manner in which we conduct ourselves, at home, at work and in public and private is learned by following the examples and instructions of others. Parents, friends, teachers, people in positions of authority, people we respect as worthy authorities, and even, without much thought, we believe and trust relatively unknown people, characters on social media, and the news are all sources and examples, because “all right minded people know this” but have these sources of our learning acceptable behavior and thinking brought us to joy and happiness or led us into ever deepening wells of despair and distress? Do these examples spark joy?

So what about those “examples” and joy? Or is it more about “examples” and envy? Most of our society, at least here in the West, what was once known as “Christendom”, is deep in the throes of an era of self worship and infatuation with self. Our lives, and the lives of our “examples” are certainly not the lives of saints nor anything remotely resembling saints. And daily our society tells us and reinforces the mantra that man is the measure of all things, and this is OK. Joy is found in a new trip, a new car, a new girlfriend or boyfriend, a faster computer, a new dress or suit, a new house or a new husband … a nice coffee and a couple of donuts? Really? Joy?

It’s OK to be “bad”, even fun to be “bad”, to “reward” ourselves with bouts and binges of “bad” behavior for sticking to some middling good behavior for some arbitrarily short period of time, some New Year’s resolution which lasted for a week, maybe, if we really, really, tried hard. “Bad” in this context refers to behavior lacking in “virtue” and in a cultural twist, the 7 deadly sins have been “rehabilitated” into acceptable and perhaps in some cases even desirable behaviors in a self gratification centered life style. Most lately we see Narcissism being raised to the exalted state of a “secular virtue”. And where did Love, as in self sacrificing Love go in this blizzard of self worship?

We were created and called to strive to be good, “as our heavenly Father is good”.  We do know what is good and what is not in the same way we know what is quality and what is not. It is written in our DNA, some call it “Natural Law”. Yes, the God deniers are legion and yet none would exist absent God the Creator calling them into existence with love and keeping them in existence with an even greater love, imprinting us with the Natural Law at conception and calling us endlessly home to Him.

Examples …

These days we are all like riders on a train thinking that reality is contained in the vista dome car of our little lives, looking out through the windows of our screens at whatever Potemkin Village our “Examples” care to show us, with no awareness of the rest of the train, nor where it came from nor where it is headed and how it all ends. And who are our “examples”? Justin? Donald? The beautiful people of “The 5”, of the Golden Globe awards? Whichever celeb has risen to the top of the Social Media pond this week?

At the very pinnacle of the man-centered universe are our real examples, right? The intellectual giants of modern academia, the self declared “Brights”, whose wisdom we are expected to accept and implement in our daily lives. We are talking about the academics, authors, journalists, and media stars who are arguably the shapers of what matters to modern enlightened society, our attempt at “culture”.

We have been obediently marching down this road at least since the French Revolution, a watershed event in modern European history that began in 1789 and ended in the late 1790’s with the ascent of Napoleon Bonaparte. And that road, that “road to perdition” has led us inexorably to what we have today. Looking around you, can anyone believe that this is the best of all worlds, the realized daily experience of our society following the wisdom of the “Brights” for the last 200 or so years?

This road, this man centered “road to perdition” has lead us into 200 years of more savage death than all of previous human history combined. In a mere 2 centuries we have flipped over our whole system of beliefs, from a culture of life, focused on the seasons, on growing, on harvest, on children as necessary and even desirable, on large nuclear families and religions folks believed in, had true faith in, faith in the divine, in God, now flipped over to a culture of death and destruction ever more deeply buried in euphemism and baffle-gab but clearly death focused in a most horrifying way and we have much more faith in government and our alleged leaders and their civil servants than medieval man ever had in the church. And we think the Medievals were gullible superstitious peasants … what does that make us?

Our New Society, our “Enlightened” modern culture, with man at the center, at the pinnacle, finds itself enslaved to our self gratifying passions. Are we not enslaved by anxiety, sadness and obsessions, by hatred, fornication, and envy, enslaved by thoughts of jealousy, rage, and death? We have gotten so desperate that we turn to thoughts of suicide and abortion, for distraction we turn to many forms of sinful sexuality, we are oppressed and enslaved by divisions in our families, and by harmful friendships, and in our despair we turn to every sort of emotional fantasy, and spells, and rituals, and strange beliefs in primitive pre-Christian paganism and even to witchcraft, and the occult masquerading as New Age Gnosticism, and pride ourselves in being “spiritual”.

I recently read a list of the 50 top atheists at the “Best Schools” web site. The BS site is all about the best of the best in academia and one gets the impression that the writers consider “atheism” to be one of the hallmarks of an intelligent human being, in fact it seems at first blush that philosophical academia and journalism is peopled exclusively with atheists and anyone who is not an atheist is somewhat primitive and “unsophisticated”. And yet, we see in these “Elysian Fields” nothing but the promotion of death.

Now, Elysium, also called Elysian Fields or Elysian Plain, in Greek mythology, was originally the paradise to which heroes on whom the gods conferred immortality were sent. It has come to refer to any promised desirable future to which we are being steered by our “betters”. But all we have seen in reality is death and death and more death, death industrialized and raised to a higher order of efficiency with “modern tools and technologies. And while there has been a soundly demonstrated efficiency at killing and destruction in our secular humanist culture, not one of these elite thinkers have ever created life, except by the usual human procreative way of the last hundred millennia or so … 1 man and 1 woman intimately exchanging fluid. None can claim any positive knowledge or origins and virtually everything they claim is as unprovable as the claims of any of the billions of believers.

The “no god” theory is simply another hypothesis upon which many academics, authors and journalists have built prestigious and lucrative careers, another sterling example of BS baffles. No ordinary person can hope to have even a minor meaningful conversation with these “Brights”, we are “not in their league”. And in human terms they are certainly charter members of the cultural elite, and it is interesting to note that “in human terms” it is certainly difficult, perhaps even impossible, to fruitfully imagine how “a god” might work.

And certainly none of these opinion leaders can even begin to offer any reasonable certainty beyond the very same certainty that is on offer throughout the Social Media universe. “All right thinking persons know this to be true”, right? The difference between them and us is the difference between a Tweet and real blog post … anyone can Tweet but it takes sheer genius to write thousands of words on subjects and in ways of writing that only another genius can understand. And they all seem to inhabit a “swamp of sorrows” with no joy and no future after a brief flickering life. What’s the point?

So then, what example are we to take to heart, what example are we to follow to gain peace and happiness, surely one of the primary desires of all human beings, even atheists. Well, let’s look at some people first who even the “no god” crowd would certainly agree led good lives. Let’s look at some saints. Are their lives a good example to take to heart when deciding how to live our own lives.

I believe that the study of inspired writings, that is in Scripture, and the accounts of the lives of blessed men and women, that we find a living breathing example of how to live godly lives. If we devote ourselves to trying to imitate the lives of these saintly people then no matter which virtue we seem to be lacking we can find it in Scripture and the lives of the saints, like finding the particular medicine in God’s own clinic for the particular ailment that is troubling us at that moment.

St. Joseph, my name saint, teaches chastity and firm self discipline, Job teaches endurance, so absolutely necessary to persevere on the godly path in this world of distraction and diversion, St. Augustine teaches repentance and humility, and insight into the perennial human condition, even of the highly intelligent. I have found over the last 25 years or so that St. Augustine’s “Confessions” continues to speak to me like a personal letter from a much respected older brother … someone whose example is truly worthy of following and emulating. What did Saint Augustine have to say about GOD?

*****

For who is Lord but the Lord? Or who is God save our God? Most high, most excellent, most mighty, most omnipotent; most merciful, and most just; most hidden, and most near; most beautiful, and most strong, constant, yet incomprehensible; unchangeable, yet changing all things; never new, never old; renewing all things, yet bringing old age upon the proud, without their realizing it; ever working, yet ever at rest; gathering, yet needing nothing; supporting, filling, and protecting; creating, nourishing, and perfecting; still seeking, though you lack nothing.

Thou lovest, but without agitation; art jealous, yet free from anxiety; repentest, yet grievest not; art angry, yet serene; changest Thy works, but not Thy purpose; embrace what Thou findest, yet didst never truly lose; never in need, yet rejoicing in gains; never covetous, yet demanding a profit. (Men give to you more than required and) Thou receivest over and above, that Thou mayest owe (hoping to put you in their debt) ; and who hath aught that is not Thine? (all is your gift)

Thou payest (those) debts, yet owest us nothing; remittest (forgive) debts, losing nothing. And what had I now said, my God, my life, my holy joy? Or what saith any man when he speaks of Thee? (Is all this that I have said enough? Can anyone who speaks of you ever say enough?)

Saint Augustine. “The Confessions of St. Augustine” ( 1 pp. 2-3 ).

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And where did Love, as in self sacrificing Love, go in this blizzard of self worship? I have been reading St. Augustine off and on for 25 years, he has much to say about Love. And again, I have been reading meditations daily from a very special book for three years now.  Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.Dwrote a book Divine Intimacy,  Meditations on the interior life for every day of the liturgical year”.  Where is Love? This is what Fr. Gabriel has to say about the reality of the Incarnation:

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God is Love; everything He does, both in Himself and outside of Himself, is a work of love. Being the infinite good, He cannot love anything outside of Himself from the desire of increasing His happiness, as is the case with us; in Himself He possesses all. Therefore, in God, to love, and hence to will creatures, is simply to extend, outside of Himself, His infinite good, His perfections, and to communicate to others His own Being and felicity.

Bonum diffusivum sui, St. Thomas says. Thus God loved man with an eternal love and, loving him, called him into existence, giving him both natural and supernatural life. through love, God not only brought man out of nothing, but chose him and elevated him to the state of divine sonship, destining him to participate in His own intimate life, in His eternal beatitude. This was the first plan of the immense charity of God with regard to man.

But when man fell into sin, God, who had created him by an act of love, willed to redeem him by an even greater act of love.  See then how the mystery of the Incarnation presents itself to us as the supreme manifestation of God’s exceeding charity towards man. “By this hath the charity of God appeared toward us, because God hath sent His only-begotten Son into the world, that we may live by Him. In this charity … He hath first loved us, and sent His Son to be a propitiation for our sins” (1 Jn 4-9.10).

After having given man natural life, after having destined him for the supernatural life, what more could He give him than to give Himself, His Word made flesh, for his salvation.

God is Love. It is not surprising, therefore, that the story of His benevolent action on behalf of man is all a poem of love, and of merciful love. The first stanza of this poem was our eternal predestination to the vision and to the fruition of the intimate life of God. The second stanza relates, in an even more touching way, the sublimity of His mercy: the mystery of the Incarnation.

The sin of our first parents had destroyed God’s original plan for our elevation to a supernatural state; we had forfeited our claim, and could never atone for the sin. God could have pardoned all, but it was becoming to His holiness and infinite justice to exact an adequate satisfaction; man was absolutely incapable  of providing this. Then the most sublime work of God’s mercy was accomplished: one Person of the Blessed Trinity, the second, came to do for us what we could not do for ourselves. Behold the Word, God’s only-begotten Son, “who for us men and for our salvation, descended from heaven and became incarnate” (Credo).

The merciful love of God thus attains its highest manifestation: if there is no ingratitude and misery greater than sin, there can be no love greater than that of Him who inclines over so much ingratitude and abjection to restore it to its primal splendor. God did this, not by the intervention of a prophet or the most sublime of the angels; He did it personally: all three Persons of THE Blessed Trinity acted in the Incarnation, the end of which was to unite a human nature with the Person of Word. In this mystery, the immensity of the love and mercy of God for man appears and shines forth.

*****

So we find in Scripture, specifically in Malachi 3, The Coming Day of Judgment:

1 Behold I send my angel, and he shall prepare the way before my face. And presently the Lord, whom you seek, and the angel of the testament, whom you desire, shall come to his temple. Behold, he cometh, saith the Lord of hosts. 2 And who shall be able to think of the day of his coming? and who shall stand to see him? for he is like a refining fire, and like the fuller’s herb: 3 And he shall sit refining and cleansing the silver, and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and shall refine them as gold, and as silver, and they shall offer sacrifices to the Lord in justice. 4 And the sacrifice of Juda and of Jerusalem shall please the Lord, as in the days of old, and in the ancient years. 5 And I will come to you in judgment, and will be a speedy witness against sorcerers, and adulterers, and false swearers, and them that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widows, and the fatherless: and oppress the stranger, and have not feared me, saith the Lord of hosts.

And the thought, the belief that we can deny God … that if we say so then it must be so … is just insane … as C.S. Lewis said: ““A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell.” ― C.S. Lewis, “The Problem of Pain”.  Our culture, our enlightened society has bought into the lie that by denying God we can get away with robbing Him.

6 For I am the Lord, and I change not: and you the sons of Jacob are not consumed. 7 For from the days of your fathers you have departed from my ordinances, and have not kept them: Return to me, and I will return to you, saith the Lord of hosts. And you have said: Wherein shall we return? 8 Shall a man afflict God, for you afflict me. And you have said: Wherein do we afflict thee? in tithes and in first fruits. 9 And you are cursed with want, and you afflict me, even the whole nation of you. 10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in my house, and try me in this, saith the Lord: if I open not unto you the flood-gates of heaven, and pour you out a blessing even to abundance. 11 And I will rebuke for your sakes the devourer, and he shall not spoil the fruit of your land: neither shall the vine in the field be barren, saith the Lord of hosts. 12 And all nations shall call you blessed: for you shall be a delightful land, saith the Lord of hosts.

13 Your words have been unsufferable to me, saith the Lord. 14 And you have said: What have we spoken against thee? You have said: He laboureth in vain that serveth God, and what profit is it that we have kept his ordinances, and that we have walked sorrowful before the Lord of hosts? 15 Wherefore now we call the proud people happy, for they that work wickedness are built up, and they have tempted God and are preserved. 

But all will be remembered, nothing is forgotten, not one little jot … all is inscribed in The Book of Remembrance:

16 Then they that feared the Lord, spoke every one with his neighbour: and the Lord gave ear, and heard it: and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that fear the Lord, and think on his name. 17 And they shall be my special possession, saith the Lord of hosts, in the day that I do judgment: and I will spare them, as a man spareth his son that serveth him. 18 And you shall return, and shall see the difference between the just and the wicked: and between him that serveth God, and him that serveth him not.

So we come to the end of part 1 … next post maybe I will touch on the Resurrection, or maybe not until Easter … if the Resurrection is not all true then Christianity is an evil lie, the Cross without redemption, and the god deniers are right about everything and this really is the best of all worlds possible under the rule of man as the measure of all things.

Enough for now.

Cheers

Joe

The Angelus, JEAN FRANÇOIS MILLET (Museo_de_Orsay, 1857-1859)

 

Peasants …

 

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Life in a small town

So What Now … My Church and My Nation … Wither goest thou?

Serendipity … random chance in action? Via The Lepanto Institute  I found a new and interesting  blog-site yesterday here.

The Battle of Lepanto, 7 October 1571

By way of an intro here are a few gems from the blog in which he quotes from books I have read and also from an author and a book I have never heard of before …

First, a couple of writers with whom I am very familiar, C. S. Lewis, and T. S. Eliot :

C.S. Lewis

“Perhaps I am asking impossibilities. Perhaps, in the nature of things, analytical understanding must always be a basilisk which kills what it sees and only sees by killing. But if the scientists themselves cannot arrest this process before it reaches the common Reason and kills that too, then someone else must arrest it.”C. S. Lewis, The Abolition of Man, 1945.

and

T.S. Eliot

“The World is trying the experiment of attempting to form a civilized but non-Christian mentality. The experiment will fail; but we must be very patient in awaiting its collapse; meanwhile redeeming the time: so that the Faith may be preserved alive through the dark ages before us; to renew and rebuild civilization, and save the World from suicide.”T. S. Eliot, Thoughts After Lambeth, 1931.

and then a new writer (for me) who I have never heard of but looks very promising :

Padre Julio Meinvielle, 1905-1973

“The error of the Progressives resides in rejecting the necessity of working for the implantation of a Christian social order. In doing so they are obliged to accept the lay city, Liberal, Socialist, Communist. The root of their error and their deviation from Christian progress lies in seeking the alliance of the Church with modernity.”Fr. Julio Meinvielle (1905-1973) From the Kabala to Progressivism.

So, my disquiet with the current situation in our church, and my equally strong misgivings with the state of society and our culture of death, dismemberment and disregard for responsibilities both personal and national (witness Boy Justin’s NATO Summit efforts so far this week and this term) here in the frozen north, that is Canada and the direction Canada seems to be heading. What is one to do? Aided by my reading of many other’s comments in various blogs and so on, my thoughts are moving in a definite direction.

The Angelus, JEAN FRANÇOIS MILLET (Museo_de_Orsay, 1857-1859)

Rhetorically speaking, is it OK to make like a medieval peasant, to choose the “Benedict Option” as some have advocated, and either not know or not care who is the current National Leader, and who is Pope, to not worry about the directions of church and state, but to remain faithfully and cheerfully ignorant of the day-to-day pronouncements that come  down from our betters in Ottawa, and Edmonton, and from the Vatican?

Must a Catholic read and understand all the latest encyclicals and exhortations and synodal papers and all the latest progressive malice and pronouncements vomiting forth from the mealy mouths of our political and bureaucratic masters in their tower of power somewhere isolated from the realities of day to day citizens, one of whom recently committed suicide on the steps of the legislature?

Or can we just keep re-reading the Scriptures and the Catechism and the Fathers and the Doctors (and maybe the occasional private revelation) until such time as God sorts this all out? I don’t think that average Catholic lay people are obliged to follow any of this stuff. Priests do this, and then they teach appropriately, or at least are supposed to.

But lay people are not obliged unless, of course, they are teachers, and so on. Catholic lay people have vocations to live in the world. Their obligations are few: obey the 10 Commandments, follow the commandments of the Church, obey the laws that they are taught pertain to them, stick to the demands of their state in life, perform works of mercy, etc.

This is really not that difficult. People are not obliged to go chasing after the latest news in prurient curiosity. As a matter of fact, that might wind up being a sin called curiositas, especially if it endangers one’s faith and distracts from one’s state in life through which the will of God is made manifest in our lives.

It is just because our church is Christ’s church that I disagree with any “serious considerations” of heading away from our One Holy Catholic and Apostolic church towards one of the  Orthodox confessions or some conservative Evangelical congregation, or even some new age Pentecostal “feelings over objective Truth emotional consolation” because all those options also clearly lack the indefectability promised by Christ as in : “and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it”. This specious tack, of abandoning the church in her hour of crisis, smacks of “taking my toys and going home” when the going gets tough and real sacrifice and pain and love is required to hold to the Truth in the storm.

Albert J. Knock

This is rather like the “force of character” which Albert J. Knock was alluding to when he wrote: “The line of differentiation between the masses and the Remnant is set invariably by quality, not by circumstance. The Remnant are those who by force of intellect are able to apprehend these principles, and by force of character are able, at least measurably, to cleave to them. The masses are those who are unable to do either.”  Running to another pasture is not the mark of a member of the Remnant.

I think it possible that a belief in the Indefectability of the Church is challenged by a Pope who seemingly formally teaches error, promotes the sycophantic heterodox and abets pedophiles, and is generally distastefully left  or progressive or modernist leaning. It’s the fact that the Pope is fairly clearly formally teaching error or at least is allowing the teaching of error that has really challenged my own Faith for the last few months, or even years, since shortly after Jorge Mario Bergoglio was crowned “Francis”.

But, there is no where else to go, as St. Peter confessed…except into the pit of our passions and emotions where Truth is most definitely not.  So we must suffer this cross where God has put us and push on with the history of the Papacy in mind and our Faith in Jesus Christ in the forefront. Okay. There it is. The age-old teaching, “Outside the Church there is no salvation.”

It was not the Second Vatican Council that dropped that teaching; it was others speaking in the ubiquitous and very suspicious “spirit of that council”.  I have written many times before about “The Spirit of Vatican II” as towards the end of this post . “By the “Spirit of Vatican II” is meant the teaching and intentions of the Second Vatican Council but interpreted in a way that is not limited to a literal reading of its documents, or even going so far as  interpreting in a way that contradicts the “letter” of the Council.”

One needs only look at Bishop Athanasius Schneider’s “Christus Vincit: Christ’s Triumph Over the Darkness of the Age” (which book has largely informed this post) to find the most well-known and disastrous statements, “In The Spirit of Vatican II” about “Humanae Vitae” (a famous council document) which were the Winnipeg Statement (Canada), the Königsteiner Erklärung (Germany), and the Maria Troster Erklärung (Austria).

I think those bishops and bishops’ conferences whose predecessors issued these fatal statements fifty years ago “In the Spirit of Vatican II” have to publicly retract these ‘Statements” and make reparation for these egregious misinterpretations of the council’s intentions which led to so much grief. Head in the sand ignoring of the evil will not make it go away nor will it be forgotten in eternity. I hope that it will some day be acknowledged and atoned for.

The more I look back at things that were introduced under the “In The Spirit of Vatican II” umbrella, looking back on my own youthful rejection of the church because of these massive progressive changes, this apparent denial of Truth, the more I begin to believe that “In The Spirit of Vatican II” was coined as a code phrase, a way for the Modernists and liberal secular progressives in the corpus of the church to say, “We couldn’t get the Pope to agree, but this is our REAL purpose. We couldn’t get the Pope to agree, but we’re going to do it anyway. So there.” I think I must have read something like this in someone’s blog post somewhere.

But I made my own choice back then, and I am responsible for that choice, and the subsequent wasted years. And, like me, the faithful left in droves because they rightly or wrongly felt that they didn’t leave the church, the church left them. And now, 50 years on, we have a Modernist in the chair of Peter … now the Pope agrees … Quo Vadis my church?

Looking back on that teenager who thought he knew what was going on and was so sure he was right in his opinion that he wasted 20 years, and God never gave up on him … I promise … Never Again! So what recourse do we laity have if any Pope were to espouse heresy?

Female priests, listened to proponents of that 15 years ago in Deanery meetings, denial of the Divinity of Christ, denial of Christ’s Body in the Eucharist, see it every week in Mass as the line hurries forward to grab the host and run. Do we merely fast and pray and turn the other cheek smug in the knowledge that God’s Will be done…or, as I recently read somewhere, is it St. Michael butt-kicking pro-active time? Apologies for the blunt truth, but I don’t know how to sugar coat it, or, from another angle, is this just my self-righteous pride talking?

John of the Cross writes about the dark night of suffering and abandonment … does everyone seeking spiritual growth and union with God have a dark night of suffering when all seems lost and there is temptation to despair? I rather think that there is no way forward that does not involve gong through some sort of spiritual dark night. And we lay people are much more free to choose our path, unconstrained as we are by vows and rules of obedience, so we have to choose carefully.

First, I figure that lay people have more options than Bishops and especially priests who operate under vows of obedience. These are, so far, hypothetical, all these alleged heresies. The Church is indefectible, always remember this, much worse has occurred in history and may well occur again. When those times arrive, make sure your soul is clean and you are doing penance. Get to confession often … at least monthly … we all really need confession.

From scripture, carved on a slab of wood hanging on my kitchen wall: “But if it seem evil to you to serve the Lord, you have your choice: choose this day that which pleaseth you, whom you would rather serve, whether the gods which your fathers served in Mesopotamia, or the gods of the Amorrhites, in whose land you dwell: but as for me and my house we will serve the Lord.”
-Joshua 24:15 (Douay-Rheims)

And Simon Peter answered him: Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life.
-John 6:69 (DR)

Cheers

Joe

Domine, quo vadis?

My Lord, wither goest thou?

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Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

Cancer Models, Complexity … and Beauty

“An Taiseirl (The Resurrection)”, Noirin Ni Riain and The Monks Of Glenstal Abbey, from the album “Vox de Nube”, (1996)

In a series of previous posts, I remarked on the effective use of models and the nature of models and the difference between hard models and soft models and the real world results deriving from the different types of models.

For the interested, that series is here, and here, and here, and here. So if models are of interest read the whole series, or not, your call, your mileage may vary. This post is about a couple of models which occupy opposite ends of reality, from the macro to the micro.

As previously noted and discussed “reality” was once a popular topic, and over the centuries, even the millennia, humanity has developed a rich, varied and often contradictory plethora of “Philosophical Traditions”, a detailed taxonomy of thought, trying to make sense of our experienced reality.

But what it all boils down to in the end is only four basic macro “Models”. Those models are worldviews at their most basic level. The Four Models, the four major global worldviews are Material Naturalism, Secular Humanism, Pantheism and Monotheism, represented by Judeo-Christianity. I happen to believe and act according to the Judeo-Christian world view, or model.

Is Metaphysics useful?

Today’s thought is about the naturalist and humanist view that everything in “reality” including “self” is “simply” biochemical or physical process, random chance, and evolution, along the lines of the old saw about a bunch of monkeys randomly typing away and “randomly” producing “The Bible”, or a “Palestrina Mass”. Is “complexity” a clue to the nature of reality, or is reality personal, just another pot of muddy soup simmering on the stove top of self interest?

And opposite this simple metaphysic for simpletons I try to contrast the extraordinary complexity of cell respiration in the context of developing cancer. What I am attempting here is to show that the extraordinary complexity of cell respiration alone is ample evidence for something beyond and above the simplistic views of the materialists and the humanists without ever venturing into the massively complex inter-relation of all the universal constants and environmental and physical variables which must be precisely what they are for cells, (ie. us) to even exist.

I am everything

I find myself unable to accept a simplistic answer that all this beauty is just “biochemical processes, random chance, and evolution”.  Now, these days my model is not very popular, in fact those who adhere to the Judeo-Christian model tend to be regarded as “superstitious primitives”.

The majority of folks these days, the new”enlightened”, when they think about it at all, hold to the models of Material Naturalism and/or Secular Humanism or a kind of non-thinking spouting of bits and pieces from both depending on the circumstances of the moment and whoever they are trying to belittle and Bulverise amongst those neolithics who do not agree with the prevalent popular version of “reality”.

Of course, it’s a given that anyone who doesn’t agree with the “nice” “polite” social club we call “modern” enlightened society, anyone who doesn’t agree with The Progressive Faction, is an idiot. As I have posted before, I believe that the rise of Bulverism in any group is a sure sign of the decay, the rot, within said group.

Oh! You just say that because you are a man!

I have referenced Bulverism in a couple of previous posts but Bulverism is indeed THE sure sign of a weak and immoral argument and a failed entity, whichever and wherever they are found. Progressives, Communists, Nazis, Liberals, Democrats, Clerical Socialists, Liberation Theologians, all cut from the same cloth, dyed black or red or denim, whatever, and all serving the same master, shoveling coal for Satan.

I suspect that most of those who practice Bulverism are not even aware that that is what they are doing, since Bulverism is the stock in trade of the entire “philosophy of emotion” crowd and they have no idea that there is any other method of “discussing” ideas.  The method of Bulverism is to “assume that your opponent is wrong, and explain his error”.

So too the Liberal wing of the Catholic Church, and virtually every other left leaning group and individual, political or economic or social, on the planet  … their opponents are “obviously” wrong and “out of touch with the times”. The Bulverist assumes a speaker’s argument is invalid or false, “all right minded people know this to be true”,  and then explains why the speaker came to make that mistake, attacking the speaker or the speaker’s motive.

How do you make a phone?

The term “Bulverism” was coined by C. S. Lewis[1] to poke fun at a very serious error in thinking that, he alleges, recurs often in a variety of religious, political, and philosophical debates. Similar to Antony Flew‘s “Subject/Motive Shift”, Bulverism is a fallacy of irrelevance.

One accuses an argument of being wrong on the basis of the arguer’s identity or motive, but these are strictly speaking irrelevant to the argument’s validity or truth. But it is also a fallacy of circular reasoning, since it assumes, rather than argues, that one’s opponent is wrong.

So back to my subject of interest, the macro model known as Material Naturalism, and the beliefs arising from it, which inform the understanding of the micro model known as cell theory. In this post I am comparing what seem to be conclusions derived from the macro model Material Naturalism and applied to the micro model of cell theory.

How do you make a Pork Chop?

Material Naturalism is the “idea or belief that only natural (as opposed to supernatural or spiritual) laws and forces operate in the world.” Adherents of naturalism (i.e., naturalists) assert that natural laws are the rules that govern the structure and behavior of the natural universe, that the changing universe at every stage is a product of these laws.

In this view, it comes down to the belief that a cell phone and a porkchop have their origins in exactly the same random processes, and to further confuse these believers both items come shrink wrapped in clear plastic, so it must be true, right?

Remember when science was science, and “scientific” carried credibility? For example, cell theory In biology, is the historic scientific theory, now universally accepted, that living organisms are made up of cells, that they are the basic structural/organizational unit of all organisms, and that all cells come from pre-existing cells.

Cells are the basic unit of structure in all organisms and also the basic unit of reproduction. With continual improvements made to microscopes over time, magnification technology advanced enough to discover cells in the 17th century. This discovery is largely attributed to Robert Hooke, and began the scientific study of cells, also known as cell biology.

So somewhere in the 19th or 20th century we entered the age of Scientific Material Naturalism.  Everything which we think of as “reality”  is simply a process and everything that takes place, is thought about, or felt in our emotions, is nothing more than a biochemical reaction, evolving randomly towards chaos. What is left of “Beauty”, “Quality”, “Love” in a reality which is no longer real but rather just some random accident? You can’t touch them, or measure them, so they can’t be real, right?

Curiously, “Does it spark joy?” proves again to be a useful tool.

So, that’s part one … more to follow as I try to make clear this simple emotional muddle that dangerously contaminates our thinking about virtually everything we encounter on a daily basis.

Cheers

Joe

How do you make a million dollars?

In the age of Material Naturalism, does the question “What is Science?” even mean anything anymore? When Facebook opinions carry more weight than Nobel Prizes and “Scientific American” has more cred than “Science” we seem very close to “Burn The Witch!

 

 

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Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

Through The Lens of Age … Conformity to God’s Will

“Hotaru” by Kobudo, from the album “Ototabi”, (2013)

So, on revisiting my last post it might seem that life is grim and depressing with nothing of joy to contemplate in the world. And this would be correct when looked at a certain way. The painful disassociation from all things secular and temporal is indeed depressing and grim, joyless even as the realization of how little of the secular human existence matters in the big picture, one discovery of dissatisfaction after another, failure in all the members, even in members which heretofore had been relied upon to provide some comfort in the storm.

September 1970: French naval officer and underwater explorer Jacques Yves Cousteau (1910 – 1997), who in 1957 was appointed director of the Institute of Oceanography in Monaco. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

Jacques Cousteau remarked: “The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.” I spent almost 8 years of my young life as a blue ocean sailor. I would have to agree wholeheartedly with Jacques regarding the spell of the sea.

I do not recall ever reading anything by Jacques Cousteau on spirituality and GOD but have difficulty believing that a fellow ocean sailor would not have had deep thoughts and beliefs regarding GOD in His majesty. I would paraphrase that sentiment to say “GOD, once he casts His net of wonder, holds one in thrall for the remainder of ones days”.

GOD and His existence and his all encompassing plan for everything and everyone is only hinted at powerfully by the sea and the experience of those who travel thereon, feeling the full range of the power of the sea.

I do not include the millions of “cruise boat tourists” who “take a cruise” from year to year in the number of those “who go down to the sea in ships”. For all the exposure they get, in their multi-thousand head herd, to the sea, they might as well be at Disneyland of some nautically themed entertainment venue in Vegas.

And I wade through my personal mental virtual reality of Frodo’s “Dead Marshes”  where the public actions of our modern Roman Curia color my faith life, and the public actions and words of our modern political and social classes, and the media color everything by which I try to understand what might be happening in the world around me. And I have to continually remind myself that “telling it like it is” is really only “telling it like what I think it might be”.

The Dead Marshes – from Peter Jackson’s movie “The Two Towers” based on “The Lord Of The Rings”

The Dead Marshes – from Peter Jackson’s movie “The Two Towers” based on “The Lord Of The Rings”

It’s not really “like it is” because there is no way I can know what it is, very much like I could not tell what the outcome would be when in the midst of a life and death struggle to preserve our little vessel in the midst of the power of a hurricane driven sea.

What I “think it is” is colored, is filtered,  by my pride, my opinion, my attachments, and my desires regarding what I think it “should” be.  Filtered by what “makes sense” to me.  I am completely missing the “deep” game. Only God reads the heart.

And why then does it all seem so grim? Is it because I am, in fact, failing to conform myself to God’s will?  God communicates Himself most to the soul that has progressed farthest along in love, in the sense of “Agape”, that is, true charity, or so I am told.

“Red Dragonfly” by Kobudo, from the album “Ototabi”, (2013)

And I am also told that true union with GOD brings true joy in its fullest sense. In real life, true love is made manifest in the willingness of the lover to do what pleases the loved one. True love is manifest, in this world, in the lover’s conforming oneself to the desires, tastes, and will of the loved one, not willing anything which could displease the loved one.

Saint Michael The Archangel

Saint Michael The Archangel

So, is it, the lack of, an abundance of joy, that is perhaps a real barometer of ones degree of conformity to God’s will? More joy more conformity, less joy less conformity? So it seems to me at this time, anyway. All the human foibles and sins to which I am prone interfere with and prevent full conformity with GOD’s will and therefore necessarily interfere with the development of joy in my life.

And what about outside influences? What about “all the evil spirits who prowl throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls.” as found in the last line of our “Prayer to Saint Michael The Archangel”?  I have been reading about exorcists, and reading books by real exorcists, there is even a “Priestly Society of Exorcists” called the Dolorans. I have also lately watched a couple of videos claiming to be about real exorcisms. I have moved firmly into the “I believe in spirits and demons and the Devil” camp.

As the Book of Revelations, (Revelations 12:3-4) says, “3And there was seen another sign in heaven: and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads, and ten horns: and on his head seven diadems: 4And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to be delivered; that, when she should be delivered, he might devour her son”.

So we are talking billions of evil spirits. Unfortunately, this whole area of demons and evil spirits, is not a popular subject these days since we are “too sophisticated” to believe all this superstitious nonsense. It is really quite dangerous to deny the existence of a powerful enemy.

This notion of the non-existence of Satan, and evil spirits and demons, and their influence in and on our lives, is a relatively new “truth” believed only by our sophisticated materialist secular society. Our “primitive” and “superstitious” ancestors believed otherwise, in all times and all cultures. C.S. Lewis mentions this in “the Screwtape Letters” :

*****

“My Dear Wormwood,

I wonder you should ask me whether it is essential to keep the patient in ignorance of your own existence. That question, at least for the present phase of the struggle, has been answered for us by the High Command. Our policy, for the moment, is to conceal ourselves.

Of course this has not always been so. We are really faced with a cruel dilemma.When the humans disbelieve in our existence we lose all the pleasing results of direct terrorism and we make no magicians. On the other hand, when they believe in us, we cannot make them materialists and sceptics. At least, not yet.

I have great hopes that we shall learn in due time how to emotionalise and mythologise their science to such an extent that what is, in effect, belief in us, (though not under that name) will creep in while the human mind remains closed to belief in the Enemy. The “Life Force”, the worship of sex, and some aspects of Psychoanalysis, may here prove useful.

If once we can produce our perfect work – the Materialist Magician, the man, not using, but veritably worshipping, what he vaguely calls “Forces” while denying the existence of “spirits” – then the end of the war will be in sight. But in the meantime we must obey our orders. I do not think you will have much difficulty in keeping the patient in the dark.

The fact that “devils” are predominantly comic figures in the modern imagination will help you. If any faint suspicion of your existence begins to arise in his mind, suggest to him a picture of something in red tights, and persuade him that since he cannot believe in that (it is an old textbook method of confusing them) he therefore cannot believe in you.

Chapter VII”

*****

So in this enlightened age we now have acknowledged the real “Materialist Magician“. We know them as Material Naturalists and their belief system is known as Material Naturalism. This is the belief that all that exists in the world is ultimately reducible to material phenomena. For example, from this perspective, Mother Teresa was just a unique bundle of brain chemistry with particular psychoneural processes acting predictably, prompting her to do what she did.

At all other times and places in history the belief in the demonic has been both fervent and well documented. Especially prevalent is the existence of “fomenting spirits”. That is, those evil spirits whose specialty is fomenting one or another kind of bad behaviour in humans who are more than ready to go along with any evil urging. Exorcists tell us that since so many demons identify with the vice or attitude they seek to foment, demons answer to these names.

As a result, some of the names of demons which I am listing here will correspond to various vices and disorders or attitudes which demons foment, but which we tend to think of as “natural” human behaviour because we don’t believe in demons. Here is just a short list of examples taken from the domain of

Satan's Subtle Art of Destruction

Satan’s Subtle Art of Destruction

Lying Spirits: “Pretension, Unreality, Denial, Delusion/Labyrinth, Convoluted Thinking, Cheating, Neglect of Responsibilities, Irreverence, Circumvention, Folly, Concealment, Blindness of Spirit, Evasiveness, Deceit, Mask, Game Playing, Deception, Illusion, Diversion, Error, Drama, Marionette-Puppet, False, Farce, Hallucination; Smoke & Mirrors, Harlequin Mask, Imitation, Pantomime, Counterfeit, Role Reversal, Fraud, Detraction, Incredulity, Coy, Cunning, Undermining, Aping, Dichotomy, Juggling, Duplicity, Facade, Dual, Showmanship, Theatrics, Show, Acting, Trickery, Magic, Mockery, Appearances, Fantasy, Heresy, Legion, Subversive, Irony, Mimicry”

Another domain is Unclean Spirits:Unclean & Offensive Conditions, Compulsiveness to Clean, Involuntary Vices (Obsessive Compulsive), Compulsion, “I have to”, Distortion of Truth, Busybody, Nosey, Curiosity, Violation of Confidentiality, Rumors, Critical Judgment, Perverted Judgment, Perverted Thinking, Scandal, Spirits that cause Accidents”.

And yet another domain is Theft:Stealing, Greed, Avarice, Materialism, Possessiveness, Hoarding, Covetousness, Collecting, Exclusiveness, Making Excuses for Sin & Infidelities to God; Neglect-Omission; Inability to Pray Because of Worldly Cares; Inability to Give or Share, Stingy; Inability to Give Praise & Thanksgiving to God or to People”

So yes, lots of outside influences … and none of them good, the above lists are drawn from Appendix I of  Deliverance Prayers, for use by the laity” a slim volume published by Sensus Traditionis Press, and available at Amazon.com.

When we consider the subject of evil spirits, and demons, and demonology, it really is hard to ignore C.S. Lewis. In our modern times there have been very few authors to have so stimulated the imagination with regard to the spiritual realm as the author of The Screwtape Letters. The book, dedicated to his friend and colleague J.R.R. Tolkien, begins with two quotes:

The best way to drive out the devil, if he will not yield to texts of Scripture, is to jeer and flout him, for he cannot bear scorn. (Luther)

The devill . . . the prowde spirite . . . cannot endure to be mocked. (Thomas More)

This Lewis then proceeds to do in masterful fashion. Through witty episodes, he captures the cleverness and wiles of Satan’s agents, the demons and spirits who “prowl throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls”  as well as their ultimate shortsightedness and folly. The biggest part of the battle is to struggle against the tide of modern sophisticated disbelief and accept the truth of the existence of evil spirits.

Well, I guess that’s enough for now. I will read some more and think some more and perhaps post some more about this later, as I want to discuss some of this with my parish priest and get his thoughts on this topic.

Cheers

Joe

The Long Defeat …

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Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

True Love of Neighbor …

“En Priere”, Bill Douglas, from the album “Kaleidoscope”, (1993)

Our title line, the instruction from our Safari Guide on this worldly adventure, derives from the person and teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ. Christ’s will regarding love of neighbor goes so far beyond what we typically accept as “Love your neighbor as yourself” that it requires special mention.

I am riding on a lot of coat-tails with this post because the thoughts and sentiments have been expressed so well by others that I hesitate to change or paraphrase even a little. And yet these ideas are so moving I have to share.

These days I am trying to take the elevator to the third floor, the third floor I posted about elsewhere.  So, “if your head is not there” to paraphrase Valdy, this might not be for you. which is OK, each of us on our own part of the path, each of us searching for Truth in our own way …

I’m thinking, the way we live these days is akin to being roomies in a 3 story boarding house, sort of like “Friends”. Most of us, we the “masses”, live on the first floor and really don’t give it much thought other than to be vaguely aware that there is another floor above us where the sparkly vampires, the know-it-alls, the Brights, live their exalted lives, beyond our reach or influence, and where all the house rules and secular rewards and punishments descend from.

Now, Albert J. Knock, of whom I have posted before, put it like this: ” … The line of differentiation between the masses and the Remnant is set invariably by quality, not by circumstance. The Remnant are those who by force of intellect are able to apprehend these principles, and by force of character are able, at least measurably, to cleave to them. The masses are those who are unable to do either.”

So, in the 3 story rooming house metaphor, all us easy going folks on the first floor are the “masses” as noted above, prone to temptation and failure and continual worship of self and our carnal appetites. And the folks on the 2nd floor of the rooming house are a sort of remnant in a strictly secular way, the elite, who “by force of intellect are able to apprehend … (some fashionable) … principles, and by force of character are able, at least measurably, to cleave to them“. Those are the ones who learned to handle stairs and doorknobs … our “betters” in a class conscious sort of way, just ask them if you get a chance in passing, they will tell you “of course”.

I am setting the stage for this next bit by quoting from Venerable Fulton Sheen:

*****

“Give me a man who loves and I will tell him what God is.” Such are the words of St. Augustine. Anyone who ever loved craved unity with that which he loved. Thus in marriage the ideal is the unity of two in one flesh; in religion the ideal is to be one with Christ. There is not a single person who loves Our Dear Lord, who does not strive to be united to Him in thought and in desire and even in body and mind.

Venerable Fulton Sheen

Venerable Fulton Sheen

But here is the problem: How to be one with Christ? His earthly life ended over two thousand years ago. Therefore to some He is only a figure Who crossed the stage of history, as did Caesar and Aristotle, and then was seen no more.

Such souls believe that the only way they can be united with Our Lord, is by reading what someone wrote concerning Him, or by singing hymns in His name, or by listening to a sermon on His life.

It is no wonder that such people soon begin to think of Our Lord as a teacher of ethics, or as a great humanitarian reformer like Buddha or Socrates, for they too also once lived, preached, and edified, and left behind them a beautiful memory. It is only minds with little power of penetration that say Our Dear Lord “was a good man”.

May I say that this is precisely what Our Lord was not, viz., a good man, because good men do not lie. If He is not what He claimed to be, what His Miracles witnessed, what the Jewish and Gentile prophecies foretold, viz., the Son of the living God—then He is not just a good man. Then He is a liar, a knave, a deceiver, and a charlatan. If He is not the Christ, the Son of the living God, He is the anti-Christ; but He is not just a good man.

Let us try to understand what Our Divine Lord really is. Begin with yourself. Have you ever thought of how wonderfully you have been made; that there is in you something which can be seen and touched, namely, your body whose nature is fleshy; but there is also something invisible about you, namely your mind and soul with its thoughts, its loves, and its desires.

Your soul is, in a sense, “incarnate” in a body (the word incarnate, as you know, means in the flesh); that is, your soul animates and unifies your body. Now consider the person of Our Divine Lord. He is the true Incarnation, not of a soul in a body, but of God in the form of man.

There is something visible about Him, namely, His perfect human nature, which can handle tools, pat little children’s heads, be thirsty and think and desire like other men. But there is also something invisible about Him, and that is His divinity. His divinity could no more be seen than your soul, though it could be seen working through His human nature, as your soul works through your body.

Just as your body and your soul combine to make one person, so in an infinitely more perfect way, His human nature and His divine nature make but one person, the person of Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God, true God and true man.”

Sheen, Fulton J.. Go to Heaven: A Spiritual Road Map to Eternity (p. 98-99). Ignatius Press.

Oh Earth Oh Earth Return”, Bill Douglas, (1996)

I feel like the blind man trying to describe an elephant to an audience who I cannot see or hear, and the concept of the “elephant” reflects back so critically on my own conduct and thoughts for so much of my life that I am at times reluctant to dive into it and reluctant to accept the conclusions which the elephant emphatically points to … mixing metaphors … I see the Ghost of Christmas past pointing at my own tombstone in silent judgement. The following from “Divine Intimacy”:

” … “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (Mt 22, 39). This measure is so great that it would be difficult to exceed it, when we consider how much every man is inclined to love himself. The good that each of us desires for himself is so great that if we could succeed in desiring just as much for our neighbor — for any neighbor — our charity would be truly magnanimous.

Jesus has said, “and as you would that men should do to you, do you also onto them in like manner” (Lk 6, 31) which, in practice, signifies that we treat others exactly as we wish to be treated ourselves; for example, showing, toward our neighbor, the same consideration if thought, word, and deed, as we would desire for ourselves; serving and pleasing others, accommodating ourselves to their wishes, as we ourselves would wish to be served, pleased, and condescended to.

Alas! our self-love incites us, instead, to use two different measures: one, very large — even exaggerated — for ourselves; the other, very small — even miserly — for our neighbor. The attentions we receive from others always seem to be so trifling, and how easily we complain that we are treated thoughtlessly! Yet very far we are from showing such thoughtfulness toward our neighbor; although in retrospect, we always think we have done too much.

We are very sensitive to the wrongs done us; and even when, in reality, they are slight, we consider them as almost unbearable; whereas we consider as mere nothings the things by which we offend others so freely. The greatest enemy of fraternal charity is self-love, which makes us too sensitive and demanding in what refers to ourselves, and very careless in what refers to others. (Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.D. from the book “Divine Intimacy” meditations on the interior life for every day of the liturgical year.pp 760)

Nuf for now …

Cheers

Joe

 

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Pen as Sword - Social Commentary, The Inner Struggle

Second Thoughts on A New Paradigm? (part 7)

Kojo No Tsuki” (Rentaro Taki), performed by Yo-Yo Ma, Michio Mamiya, & Patricia Zander, from the album “Japanese Melodies” (1990)

And, two thousand years on, Abraham’s descendants murdered God’s Son. So much for keeping the covenant. A couple of thousand years more and schoolyard bullying in the Vatican seems pretty small potatoes compared to murdering God’s Son. So what about our trials, pains, and insults?

This is Christ’s Church. No “Ifs”, “Ands”, or “Buts”. Claims to the direct inspiration of “the Holy Spirit”, unverifiable by objective constraints and controls, easily lure us into the servitude of a religion manufactured by man. We have plenty of those around already and proliferating like Topsy, these heterodox social clubs are almost as popular, and profitable, as golf and country clubs.

Father Hunwicke again: (I love that man)

*****

The old Liberal Protestant superstition, such a comfort to the anti-Catholic mind, was that the Eucharist started as a simple fellowship meal which, probably under the influence of Hellenistic Mystery cults, was perverted into the Catholic Mass. (ed. bigotry by any name smells the same)

Rabbi Professor Dr Jacob Neusner, on the other hand, was free to follow the obvious track which leads from the ‘Cleansing of the Temple’ (in which Christ emptied the Temple of those who, by changing money or supplying certified animals, enabled the Temple cult to be fulfilled) to the conclusion, documented from his profound knowledge of first century Judaism, that Jesus of Nazareth saw himself as abolishing that sacrificial cult on the Temple Mount because of His intention, on Maundy Thursday, to erect in its place the new sacrificial system of His Eucharistic self-oblation in His Body and Blood.

And, during this Holy Week, let us continually bring back to our memories the self-identification the Lord made of himself with the Temple. “Destroy this Temple, and in three days …”. But he had made this identification during his Galilaean ministry. He forgave sins! Who indeed, as the watchers absolutely correctly asked themselves, can forgive sins but God alone? And where does God do so, if not in the Place of Sacrifice, the Temple?

So … who … what … is this Man?

*****

What about our own Fears, Uncertainties, and Doubts? What about our doctrinal controversies? These trials and pains seem, at times, to be tailored to exactly those aspects of our life which we are most attached to, like our opinions, of subjects arcane and common, of other’s opinions, and ourselves, always larger than life.

Raymond Arroyo with Mother Angelica

Raymond Arroyo with Mother Angelica

A couple of weeks ago, on the EWTN network, Raymond Arroyo incurred the wrath of the “Borgoglionistas” for running his Papal Posse over some shenanigans from some Vatican representatives.

How dare Raymond and his team question the “Hypersuperueberpapalist” team when they have been ordained directly by the Holy Spirit to change church doctrine … or so they claim.

So what? Well, that claim is sort of a big deal in theological circles … Others have written: 

*****

 “At Chalcedon, the Fathers greeted the Tome of Saint Leo, not with cries of “Christ himself has spoken” or “This is the utterance of the Holy Spirit”, but (after carefully examining its text) Peter has spoken through Leo.

Father Hunwicke

Father Hunwicke

This is profoundly in accordance with an Irenaean ecclesiology, whereby orthodoxy is witnessed by the identity of the teaching handed down from generation to generation in the particular churches, more especially in those of Apostolic foundation, and most normatively in the Roman Church. …   Does this matter?

I think it does matter, and does make a great deal of difference …  claims to the inspiration of “the Holy Spirit”, unverifiable by objective constraints and controls, can lure us into the servitude of a religion manufactured by man, a cult of “Let’s Make It Up For Ourselves”.

This cult is ultimately fashioned upon the model of the old religion of the Gnostics, who created their own fake alternatives to the Tradition received from the Apostles because they felt they knew with such certainty that the Church’s Tradition was wrong. … (read the rest at: Madmen –  it is worth the time)

*****

Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia

Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia speaks at the Major Seminary of Queretaro, Mexico on March 17, 2018. Matthew Cullinan Hoffman / LifeSiteNews

So, again,  the Bergoglio clique keep on about the Holy Spirit; how He desires us to accept constant surprises; how He speaks to us through the very lips of the Roman Pontiff … particularly the present one.

So what? Well, it would seem that this is not going to go away quietly and discretely …

Now, on March 17th, the latest FLASH news: Apparently someone called Paglia is going around shouting at people that the time has come to stop discussing Amoris and just to receive it.

Again, Father Hunwicke opines:

*****

like Edgar Alan Poe’s nocturnally silent dog, the Holy Spirit seems absent from places one might expect Him to be. Vatican I tells us that the Holy Spirit does not inspire the Roman Pontiff with new teaching but simply helps him to plug the old stuff.

Ecumenical Councils do not routinely suggest that the Spirit is guiding them in their new articulations of doctrine. Anti-Gnostic polemicists such as Irenaeus find guarantees of pure Teaching in the historical succession of orthodox bishops from the time of the Apostles, not in the activity of the Spirit …  In Saint John’s Gospel, the Lord says, indeed, that the Holy Spirit will lead his disciples into all truth: but I discern no evidence that this refers to anything beyond the ambit of the Gospel Narratives themselves.” (read the rest here)

*****

But, “... for the Holy Spirit was promised to the successors of Peter NOT so that they might, by his revelation, make known some new doctrine, but that, by his assistance, they might religiously guard and faithfully expound the revelation or deposit of faith transmitted by the apostles(Vatican I).

This would seem to overrule any notions of a “New Paradigm”, regardless of the perambulations of the Vatican Secretary of State in his “dialogue” with the secular media and other interested parties.

At times, these times, in 21st century Rome, its as if, after 500 years of watching the rebels, the followers of Luther’s “New Paradigm”,  enjoy themselves, the 60’s “Me” generation dressed up in clerical collars and cassocks and dove into an orgy of “Me Too!” in the name of ecumenicalism. What’s next? Let’s see … married clergy … women-priests … a necrotic transition from orthodoxy to a heterodox social club? Looking more and more like a duck from here.

C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis

I wonder what’s in it, this “Me Too”,  for the real Roman Catholic Church, the traditional Roman Church, not the progressive heterodox social club in Rome?

Of course, anyone who doesn’t agree with the social club, The Faction, is an idiot. As I have posted before, I believe that the rise of Bulverism in any group is a sure sign of the decay, the rot, within said group.

I have referenced Bulverism in a couple of previous posts but Bulverism is indeed THE sure sign of a weak and immoral argument and a failed entity, whichever and wherever they are found.

Progressives, Communists, Clerical Socialists, Liberation Theologians, all cut from the same cloth, dyed black or red or denim, whatever, and all serving the same master, shoveling coal for Satan.

The method of Bulverism is to “assume that your opponent is wrong, and explain his error”. So too the Liberal wing of the Catholic Church … their opponents are “obviously” wrong and “out of touch with the times”. The Bulverist assumes a speaker’s argument is invalid or false and then explains why the speaker came to make that mistake, attacking the speaker or the speaker’s motive.

The term “Bulverism” was coined by C. S. Lewis[1] to poke fun at a very serious error in thinking that, he alleges, recurs often in a variety of religious, political, and philosophical debates. Similar to Antony Flews “Subject/Motive Shift”, Bulverism is a fallacy of irrelevance. One accuses an argument of being wrong on the basis of the arguer’s identity or motive, but these are strictly speaking irrelevant to the argument’s validity or truth. But it is also a fallacy of circular reasoning, since it assumes, rather than argues, that one’s opponent is wrong.

I find myself wishing with Frodo: ““I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo. “So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. ”  All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us. (Gandalf, “Lord of The Rings”)

The modi operandi of the Modernist camp after Vatican II was to behave as if they had won the battle against the past, the past of tradition, doctrine and dogma, against the heritage of the magisterium, and that the outcomes of V II were what they wanted.

They ignored the intentions and actual documents rising out of the council and moved forward implementing “reforms” and “fundamental changes”, “in the Spirit of Vatican II”.

Pope Saint John Paul the Great

Pope Saint John Paul the Great

By the “spirit of Vatican II” is meant the teaching and intentions of the Second Vatican Council but interpreted in a way that is not limited to a literal reading of its documents, or even going so far as  interpreting in a way that contradicts the “letter” of the Council.

So, these days, these wretched days, in the first decades of the 21st century, one might be tempted to despair.

Paraphrasing Kipling, in these later days there is a real premium on keeping your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you; on trusting yourself when all men doubt you, but making allowance for their doubting too; waiting and not being tired by waiting, or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies, or, being hated, don’t give way to hating, on “being Christ”, being a real member of the body of Christ.

It seems, in hindsight, that the “Spirit of Vatican II” is still alive and well in the church bureaucracy despite 30 years of the best efforts of Pope Saint John Paul the Great and Pope Benedict XVI to cure the cancerous heresy of modernism in the 20th century Catholic Church.

Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre

Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre

After Vatican II Traditionalist Catholics such as Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre distinguished between “Catholic Rome” and the actually existing Rome, as he declared in 1974 that, while he and his followers are faithful to “Catholic Rome”, they refuse to follow “the Rome of neo-Modernist and neo-Protestant tendencies which were clearly evident in the Second Vatican Council and, after the Council, in all the reforms which issued from it” (in the Spirit of Vatican II).

A priest of the Lefebvre-founded Society of St. Pius X similarly declared in 1982 that “Rome is now the headquarters, not only of the Catholic Church, but of the Modernist Mafia which has invaded and subjected it”, and that “the multitudes of ex-Catholic shepherds and their sheep who have either defected or drifted into a new religion” might well be called “Roman Protestants”. (the Spirit of Vatican II in action – ecumenical catholicism or small c catholicism).

But all is not lost … stiff upper lip and all that … and after the darkest night, the Son rises … we always have to remember that “All God’s creatures got a place in the choir” …

Cheers

Joe

 

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The Inner Struggle

Attachments and Reality …

Inner Thoughts”  Rodrigo Rodriguez, from the album “Inner Thoughts” (2006)

16th-century fresco depicting the First Council of Nicaea, (325 AD)

16th-century fresco depicting the First Council of Nicaea, (325 AD)

Souls, occupying no space, do not exist within material reality, that is to say they do not have material properties and cannot be sensed or measured or detected by methods and devices limited to the physical plane (by science).

We are familiar with our Creed in which it is stated that God is the Creator of all things, “visible and invisible”.  (pretty much every Christian denomination has a version of the Nicene Creed, whatever their political and social affiliations and beliefs)

C.S.Lewis "Abolition of Man"

C.S.Lewis “Abolition of Man”

The soul, my soul, is found in the domain of invisible creation, along with Angels and Demons and Satan, and so on, all that part of creation which “science” cannot acknowledge, because it cannot measure it, or prove anything about it.

So modern “science” in its sophistication (root “sophistry“), simply denies that that part of creation exists, a schism of science’s own creation (Link 1), since historically all “science” is rooted in the churches and in the science of First Things. (Link 2).

Link 1 and 2 give some sort of background to the notion that modern science is functionally bankrupt when discussing “reality”. “Modern” “Science” is really all about power and money, namely who has it and who makes it.

This denial of reality in support of a favoured hypothesis is a fairly “modern” phenomenon in the history of man. In modern usage, sophism, sophist and sophistry are redefined and used disparagingly. A sophism is a specious argument for displaying ingenuity in reasoning or for deceiving someone. A sophist is a person who reasons with clever but fallacious and deceptive arguments.

What I want to say is that I believe souls exist within a material creature but outside the material universe, that is, not subject to the laws of the material universe observable by “science”. It exists as created outside that realm of vibrating bits and parts, and measurable energy, which realm is filled to overflowing with all created material beings and lots of “stuff”, the “things of this world”.

These “things of this world” which are respectively made up of agglomerations of parts, in ever decreasing size and ever increasing simplicity each material “thing” being simply the sum of its parts and all of it created by the Creator, our Prime Mover, so to speak, our God, The God, and I believe this because it is “revealed” Truth.

So … “detaching” from “stuff”, which attachment is the foundation of all my misery, my frustration and my anxiety, my regrets, my sin, detaching from “all this”, this is the task. Mission Objective: detaching the “Self” from all the “stuff” which fills up my “self” and leaves no room for God to fill me up with Himself, which leaves no room for “Union with God”.

In order to detach from “the things of this world” it is necessary for me to become comfortable thinking about everything from the point of view of my soul, which is in no dependent way connected to the material universe in which my parts reside, but rather to begin to routinely, as a matter of habit, look at all material things from “outside” so to speak. Only in this way can I start the process of detaching my “self” from the material existence that the “self” has lead throughout my material life.

So, what do I think about “Spirit”? I am told that God is a “Spirit” and it seems that the only way to approach intimacy with God is to understand and accept reality as “spiritual”. I can only approach the “spirit” God” as a “spirit” person. As long as my total reality is centered in the material universe as the only reality, I seem to experience extreme difficulty detaching from the things of this world, with a concomitant difficulty growing closer to God.

When material parts are regarded from a perspective outside material reality, from a soul’s point of view, a spirit’s point of view, the material parts are rendered less essential to existence and less essential to reality. The parts, the worldly goods all become merely unessential artifacts, experiences and feelings which become easier to set aside since they are no longer the center of our physical universe, the objects of desire by the “self”.  The “things of this world” when observed as “soul” are merely observed to exist in the physical plane.

When material reality is observed from outside the material plane, as a spirit observes the material universe, objects in that plane become dramatically less important than when the material is the center of my existence and the essential center of my life. When my self identifies itself with it’s material possessions and it’s status in the material plane it is hugely difficult to “give up the stuff”.

None of the “stuff” has anything to do with God and it fills up that place in me which God would like to fill, in fact, asks me to fill with Him.

Cheers

Joe

The closer I get to “the end of all things” the easier it is to contemplate detachment and even to actually start detaching from created “stuff”.

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The Inner Struggle

“Spirited Away” and living a lie … part II

So, here is  the rest of  “Spirited Away” and living a lie …

…  back to the discussion of movies in popular progressive culture. We were talking about a secular humanist review of the movie “Spirited Away”, which describes as “a refreshing and unusual characteristic” (of this animated feature by Hayao Miyazaki) is its refusal to set up a dualistic battle between the little girl and an evil adversary. (Seriously folks, is it really “refreshing and unusual” not to differentiate between good and evil?).

All the central characters have both a light and a dark side (is this not an essential characteristic of being a human, of being a member of “Mankind”). Our heroine must overcome the forces of fear, entitlement, selfishness, gluttony, and greed within herself (aren’t these part of simply being a human being, that is possessing these evil characteristics?) as part of the blooming of her soul. (But where did the soul come from? Who created the soul?)

Little Chihiro does what spiritual seekers (humans on the path of actualizing or developing their “self”) will recognize as “shadow work” — taking back her projections (evil is just a projection), and learning to love all parts of herself, including those mirrored by others — healing both herself and those around her in the process (no God needed here since we are the pinnacle of perfection already, all we have to do is “heal” ourselves). (This is just more of the psychobabble described in C.S. Lewis’s “Bulverism“.)

The film “Spirited Away” is a follow-up to Miyazaki’s extraordinary “Princess Mononoke” (1997). Once again he has fashioned an animated feature which transports us to a mysterious and always surprising world of spirits. In Shinto folklore, everything in nature has a god living within it. For the purpose of this discussion we ask “Is the deprecation of Christian Truth as “Exclusive” supported by the mere existence of another spiritual tradition in another culture?

How do the beliefs of “Shinto” discredit the Truth of Christianity? Why is the Shinto based model for an animated feature film presented as an argument for moral relativism and against Absolute Truth? What is transcendentally “good” about beings and characters in an animated feature film being presented as vulnerable to the excesses and defilements of (presumably religious) humanity?

Yes, this film is a touching story, but in the hands of this reviewer, like a computer virus, it is hiding a deadly payload of doubt, doubt about the importance of Truth. The story of “Spirited Away” begins as Chihiro (voiced by Daveigh Chase) and her parents (Lauren Holly, Michael Chiklis) are driving to their new home. She is sulking in the back seat,  anxious about the future.

Her father takes a wrong turn, and they wind up driving through a bumpy forest road to a hillside tunnel. When her adventuresome parents decide to explore the place, Chihiro is frightened and doesn’t want to go ahead. But she follows them, and they enter what her father decides must be a deserted theme park.

When her father smells the odors of food, they follow the scent and come upon a row of restaurants and one empty one where food is piled high on the counter. Chihiro’s parents begin devouring the fare and, to their daughter’s dismay, are turned into pigs. Chihiro flees this scene and soon realizes she has stumbled into a world of spirits. A strange boy named Haku (Jason Marsden) comes to her assistance, shows her how to keep from becoming transparent in this world, and how to cross a bridge without being detected as a human.

Still, Chihiro is pretty scared. Then comes the bit when Haku has just taken Chihiro/Sen to see her parents in the pig stable, and he gives her a rice ball to eat, and she starts tearing up as she takes the first bite, and then halfway through finishing, just begins bawling from all the trauma she has accumulated over the past 16 hours or so, the overwhelming “reality”. 

This overwhelming reality is one of realizing her true situation, her true nature, and is, in reality, a vivid metaphor for man’s realization of his true relationship to God.  Truth is overwhelming. The understanding of Truth brings tears to the person that sees Truth! This is the natural reaction of every person who encounters God. It is important to understand this great little anime film is NOT about the superiority of moral relativism, it is actually about the inadequacy and unworthiness of man and about meeting God.

But in the skilled hands of this reviewer we easily lose that glimpse of Truth as we drift away into a Shinto based human centered alternate reality. Haku tells her that to save herself and her parents she needs to seek employment in a huge bathhouse that caters to all kinds of strange-looking nature spirits.

He sends her to the boiler room where the keeper, Kamaji (David Ogden Stiers), is assisted by hundreds of little soot-balls that carry coal to the furnace. They take quite a fancy to the human girl. Eventually, she meets Yubaba (Suzanne Pleshette), the greedy and selfish sorceress who runs the bathhouse.

This dominating woman puts her to work as a bath-attendant but not before taking away her name and giving her a new one, Sen. She is assigned to Lin (Susan Egan), another human. Their biggest challenge comes when they must deal with the “Stink Spirit,” an incredibly foul smelling being.

Only after his bath do they discover that he is a once noble and proud River God who is filled with sludge and worthless junk. Sen also proves her mettle in her relationship with Kaonashi (or No-Face), a lonely figure who follows her around and eventually brings havoc to the bathhouse spirits by drawing out their yearning for gold.

The Japanese version of “Spirited Away”, was the most successful film ever to play in Japan, and won the coveted Golden Bear Award at the 2002 Berlin Film Festival. The English language version, which uses the same animation, was guided by executive producer John Lasseter of Pixar Studios (Toy Story), director Kirk Wise, and producer Don Ernst.

Similar in spirit to “Princess Mononoke”, this animated feature can be thoroughly enjoyed by both adults and children. This anime is truly a great little film but it fails utterly when used as a pedagogical tool teaching the religion of modern secular humanism. “Spirited Away” is a masterpiece that takes us to an unfamiliar world where we see familiar things with fresh eyes. Miyazaki provides an ongoing commentary on contemporary society in Japan with the characters of Chihiro’s gluttonous parents who are turned into pigs; Yubaba’s gigantic baby, a spoiled brat who gets whatever he wants; and lonely No-Face whose efforts to use his wealth to make others like him backfires.

But the film fails as an exercise in humanist apologetics because it is not intended for that purpose. Unlike Abrahamic religions this film is actually and truly intended as simply entertainment and viewers ARE an audience, not a Congregation of Believers.

The transformation of Chihiro from a sulky, clinging, and fearful little girl into a resourceful, loving, sensitive, and respectful person is a marvel to behold. Her most magic moment comes when she embraces Haku’s dark side which manifests as a dragon. Seriously folks? Embracing the dark side is a “magic moment”?  This feels like a desperate leap to justify a desperate lie. Oh, absolutely, Darth Vader is really just misunderstood, and I guess so were Stalin and Pol Pot. “Useful Idiots” sure seem thick on the ground around here.

In this “magic” moment, instead of turning against him, she reaches out to help him in his mission to discover his true identity. That’s what is so remarkable about Spirited Away, it acknowledges the shadow elements in everyone and works with these warps as part of the process of soul-making.

The problem with this is that we DO NOT make our own soul. Our soul is a created gift from God at the moment of conception which establishes us as human creations with person-hood. Instead of working to fix the warps the reviewer rationalizes them as normal parts of everyone. The reviewer has intentionally twisted the message of the movie. We, all humans,  are conceived with souls, they are not made by our own process of growth. The soul is what makes us human from the moment of conception and it is created by God out of his infinite love for mankind.

According to the reviewer, “Spirited Away” frees us from excluding anyone from our world and helps us to see that we are all in this together — human beings and spirits, ghouls and benevolent ghosts, dragons and No Names, good and evil, are all the same under the skin. But what about those poor benighted human beings, those poor ignorant souls who disagree with the reviewer and are still stuck in the old fashioned simplistic exclusionist paradigm where the difference between good and evil matter?

I guess it’s just “too bad, so sad” for them, right? Those poor ignorant exclusionists are just so “yesterday”  As John R. Mabry has put it: “We must not despise the rough, the dark, the empty, the flawed or the crooked. It is a package deal.” I guess we just have no choice but to take the evil with the good because they are only a difference of opinion and are really all the same.

But on what authority do we base this belief? Who says it is so, that this is truth? What about Good and Evil? What about God? What about hating the sin and the evil but loving the sinner? What about Christ on the cross, forgiving his enemies and keeping them in existence even as they were murdering Him?

I don’t know how anyone else reads this, but I find this review of “Spirited Away” deeply disturbing in its appealing attractiveness. Am I alone in seeing this review of “Spirited Away” as a covert subversion of the Truth of a Divine Source of all Good, of all Natural Law, the truth of  God as the creator of all and the source of all good expressed in His creations? Is this review not actually a hymn to the supremacy of Man as the source of truth, as the natural pinnacle of all good and the arbiter of good and evil as man’s opinion and nothing else?

Another remarkably jarring thing about this film, and the reviewers interpretation and gushing praise of the film, is that it normalizes references to the “Dragon” as a “good” entity. But in the Abrahamic Catholic tradition we have Revelation 12: 1-17:

*****

1And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars: 2And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.

3And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. 4And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.

5And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne. 6And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days.

The War in Heaven

7And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, 8And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. 9And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

10And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. 11And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.

12Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.

The Dragon Persecutes the Woman

13And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child. 14And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent. 15And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.

16And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth. 17And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.”

*****

In Abrahamic religions the dragon is the personification of Satan, the personification of evil, and the father of lies. Color me Curious about Truth. What do I see when contemplating Truth … This modern, man centered, view of reality, this vision of man as the penultimate being and arbiter of all value, this big lie is only possible for persons who have never experienced anything greater than themselves, who are totally wrapped up in self love. And the Dragon is the Father of Lies.

This modern religion of “worship of man” is characterized and evidenced in the fundamental sterility of the modern world, and modern culture, where creativity is measured in utilitarian terms and beauty is relatively worthless except to be commoditized or weaponized.

Where are the Mozarts of the 21st century, where are the Raphaels and the Boticellis, where are the Leonardo da Vincis, the Caravaggios, and  the Rembrandts,  where are the designers of Notre Dame and Saint Peter’s, where are the modern Donato Bramantes, Michelangelos, Carlo Madernos and Gian Lorenzo Berninis?

Where are the modern secular humanist artists, musicians, and architects? Who have we got that give our secular culture greatness to rival all the greatness of the historic masters?

All the greatest achievements of history were acts of worship rendered to a greater power, a Supreme Being, who was the creator of all and we, his creations, offered our best in praise of Him. There are very few places now where man can go to experience Power and Majesty greater than himself, to gain understanding of our true place in the universe, in “creation”. One of the few remaining places is the sea, that great blue water covering most of the planet.

The sea is a place of real hunger, real thirst, real death, and real spiritual combat, one is manifestly in the hands of a greater power, a Supreme Power. It is impossible to ignore the overwhelming power of the sea and by extension, it’s Creator. In the arms of the sea man is but a puny weakling and a pompous trespasser, held in existence only by the mercy of God.

Once one has survived a hurricane in a tiny 300 foot vessel one has no doubt about man’s place in the Divine scheme of things. A hurricane at sea is the ultimate reality check and no atheistic progressive survives a hurricane at sea. Blue water sailors are believers, without question or pause.

It is vitally important to understand the sea as a place to combat the dictatorship of the secular world which is filled with idols of technology and material goods, idols of convenience and comfort, the dictatorship of the secular world dominated and manipulated by the media and relativism, a world that flees God by taking refuge in distractions and noise, in effusive self worship. In the isolation of the sea we find the Chiaroscuro between silence and noise draws out and gently reveals a vision, an image of God.

The sea is silence and isolation, a blue water sailor is a long way from safety and the comforts of home and there is no one to call when things go wrong. The experience of the sea is necessary, in order to survive this modern world and to see it for what it really is, it is absolutely necessary to have the experience of the great blue sea.

There, at sea, we get some distance from everyday events, some proper perspective about what is important, especially our own personal importance. We can flee the noise and the superficiality of a relativistic world where the self comes first. The sea is a place of the Absolute, a place of freedom.

It is no accident that the sea is a place where monotheism predominates. There are no syncretic modernists, no atheistic humanists at sea. The sea is Abrahamic and monotheistic. The sea preserves us from the multiplicity of idols that men make for themselves. In this sense, the sea is the domain of grace. Far from his preoccupations, man encounters there his Creator and his God in all His Mighty Majesty.

Great things begin and are found at sea, in silence, in power, in abandonment to a force greater than man can ever be. The sea is where God leads us in order to speak to us in a heart-to-heart conversation. A heart to heart conversation within the silence of our souls echoing the great silence of the blue sea.

Cheers

Joe

Canadian DDH in Heavy Weather

Canadian DDH in Heavy Weather

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The Inner Struggle

“Spirited Away” and living a lie …

So, in the interest of removing distraction and helping “silence” (see my last short post about silence and distractions) I am not including music tracks or pictures in this post.

In my ongoing thoughts about this life, this world and this society in which I find myself living, I have gradually become aware of the importance of not “living a lie”. I have become aware of the importance of understanding my true place as a human being in the universe, amongst everything visible and invisible, for all eternity, of understanding what constitutes my “reality”.

I will look first at what I perceive to be the “common”, that is “generally accepted”, morality of our modern progressive society, that is the “normal world” which we “advanced” westerners live in. What I am “on about” in this post is my understanding of the perceived logical inconsistency, the inherent lie, of the popular Modernist Progressive western worldview, namely, that all morality is nothing more than a difference of opinion.

Lest I be accused of doing the “Straw-man” thing here, let me be clear that what I understand as the Progressive world view is the view espoused by the self described “Left” or “Liberals”, based on almost everything I hear and read these days from mainstream media communication and news, and everything appearing on Social Media these days such as Facebook (as an example, check out the Facebook page “Being Liberal”).

As a result of these observations, it seems that the Progressive world view can be summarized as:  “We, the sophisticated modernist progressives (self proclaimed Brights) believe that our point of view is correct, and all others are wrong … our opinion is the right opinion, …  because we say so,  and if you disagree with us then you are obviously stupid, and perhaps, absent provable stupidity, then even evil“.

If that summary of the Leftist view, as I understand it to be, is not the current common belief of all Progressives everywhere then I have failed utterly to find any evidence of something different. So, since the accepted view seems to be that “all morality is relative”, and I have a different view than the current Liberal mainstream, I am faced with a logical contradiction, namely that I am either OK with having different views because all views are of the same value, or I am stupid or evil or both because my views are different from the mainstream.

I don’t think that I can be both right and wrong at the same time for any particular values of right and wrong, because these two positions are logical opposites and I manifestly cannot be both “OK” and “not OK” at the same time. Moral relativism holds that anyone who believes that others are wrong are themselves wrong by that very definition of moral relativism.

Therefore I cannot be stupid or evil because I disagree with the manifest view of mainstream morality, in fact I must be at least as “right” as anyone else, whatever their views, right? Did I miss something there? …  Anyone? … Anyone? I think C.S. Lewis touched on this in his article about “Bulverism“.

So can I assume that I am alright with my understanding of the current modern worldview, that is, all moral views are simply a difference of opinion, and I am OK, right? If there is something else besides “I’m OK, You’re OK” in modern morality then I guess I totally missed it somewhere along the path. If I did miss something important, if that is the case, then “My Bad” and please point me in the direction that shows something different.

Otherwise, on with the discussion of why it’s a mistake to accept logical inconsistencies, and even outright lies as the basis for one’s life. The 2 items of interest here are the area of popular entertainment (most of the post), and the area of abortion (as a short case study in illogicality).

First lets look at popular entertainment. The subtle misdirection and illogicality of this review of the film “Spirited Away”  might be missed in the beauty of the film itself, but is actually a gentle effort to direct us away from Truth towards the worship of man as the summit of all and sole arbiter of what is good. Because of the subtlety it is all the more dangerous, layering humanist philosophy onto a beautiful entertainment.

Often our modern adventure movies are set in strange worlds and climax with a battle between the forces of good, represented by the hero or heroine, and the forces of evil, represented by the stranger, the odd, or the mean-spirited — for example, a witch, sorcerer, power-mad ruler, or someone else who uses their power inappropriately (for example the Star Wars series or Marvel’s super hero films). The “common man” (that would be us) seems to have little difficulty with being “for” good, and “against” evil. It just seems like common sense, right?

The modern intellectual view, however, seems to be that these scenarios make it all too easy for filmgoers to cheer for the good guys (with whom they quite naturally identify) and boo the bad guys (stand-ins for everything they don’t approve of). The assumption appears to be that it is somehow wrong or misguided to cheer for good and boo evil because there is no intrinsic difference between good and evil.

The sophisticated view seems to be that to indulge in this sort of partisanship is simplistic and the refuge of the deluded. In this purportedly flawed view of reality, the world is seen as the stage for dueling dualisms, an “us” versus “them” narrative where it is perfectly acceptable for one side to completely obliterate the “other”.

Ironically, this seems to be especially true of reviewers and filmgoers who are opposed to any discussion of the existence and manifestations of evil, (the absence of good) all around us every day and in our own lives and the lives of others. They seem opposed to any divergence of opinion which might threaten their view of man as the pinnacle of all things and the sole arbiter of the “good”.

This error is rooted in the greatest and the favorite lie of all the modernist, progressive lies, and the fundamental evil of our modern western world, the moral relativism of “I’m OK, You’re OK”. In this deception, any “evil” is given a pass in the guise of being of being simply “different” cultural values, rather than being the object of legitimate discrimination between evil and good.

This results in the dressing up of a variety of deviance, perversion, criminality, or simply “evil” activities as nothing more than the “other and the “different”. It is definitely NOT all about differentiating between “good” and “evil”, and of course, only the ignorant and unenlightened would object to important causes such as the de-facto defence of NAMBLA, or perhaps the “Right to Choose” option championed by “Planned Parenthood” under the supposedly constitutional sobriquet of “Freedom of Choice”.

When this “view of reality”, this “moral relativism” is expressed in a popular movie is this just harmless entertainment? Or does this plant the seeds of doubt about the acceptability of moral relativism. Is calling entertainment which draws clear lines between right and wrong “simplistic storytelling”  that is contributing to the creation of “hostility” a truth of a fabrication?

Doesn’t this vilification of clear moral delineation actually support the modernist worldview that prejudice and hatred (of evil) are two diseases of the mind in which we project our feelings of fear, resentment, self-disgust, anger, alienation, and paranoia on others whom we perceive to be different (especially strangers). In other words is knowing the difference between good and evil actually an evil because in actuality there is no difference that matters. Because in this progressive modernist morality, good and evil are just different points of view!

Does not the presentation of “hospitality”, “empathy”, and “self-esteem”,  as antidotes or as “spiritual practices” depreciate the true spiritual virtues of “compassion”, “sacrifice”, “forgiveness”, “charity”, and “love of neighbor” and in reality render worship to man, and man’s “common decency” as the defining measure of good and evil.

Doesn’t this slight of hand, this lie, overturn the actual roots of man’s “common decency” illustrated in the two thousand year old religious understanding of the theological virtues of Faith, Hope, Charity or Love, and compassion and love of neighbor all of which are tied up in “sacrifice of self” and are anathema to the Modernist Progressive view of morality.

To turn things on their head and acclaim a movie as “sometimes a movie gets it right”, and point to a godless celebration of humanist values like the movie “Spirited Away” is a perversion and a lie. Because “Spirited Away” is, in fact, an excellent movie and an excellent story. This is an English-language version of a Japanese animated film by acclaimed filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki. In the film a ten-year old girl named Chihiro becomes lost in an alternate universe and must find within herself the pluck and the love to endure a series of dangerous tests before she can go home.

The wonderful story in “Spirited Away” is the sugar coated distraction on the pill of evil contained in the explanation of “good” springing fully formed from the human being. To claim that “It will remind some viewers of Alice in Wonderland and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” (because) “it is nothing short of wonderful to have a female protagonist on screen who engenders our empathy and support” deprecates and ignores the importance of the satire in the original work “Alice in Wonderland”, and “The Wizard of Oz”, ignores the true intent of these works and replaces the message of the originals with some shallow reverence to some “superior” politically correct progressive feminist ideal.

This is the fundamental error of believing that “all religions” are the same, also known as “Syncretism” and of equal relevance to the modern sophisticate, that is to say, not relevant at all since we now worship ourselves as the summit and sole arbiter of what is good and what is evil, and of course whatever we like or desire is the good and anyone who disagrees with us is evil or “not good”.

This flies in the face of the previous exposition regarding “judgement” and “discrimination”, the progressive’s immediate prequel condition that prejudice against any “other” or any “different” is in fact evil is immediately thrown away as they then dive into a rationalization of why they are the exclusive purveyor of what is “good” and all others are “evil.

The trap inherent in Syncretism is the denying of absolute truth, or of any truth, the oft misquoted Pontius Pilate “What is truth?” other than whatever I say it is. According to the Gospel of Wikipedia, some religions may have syncretic elements to their beliefs or history, but adherents of so-labeled systems often frown on applying the label, especially adherents who belong to “revealed” religious systems, such as the Abrahamic religions, or any system that exhibits an exclusivist approach. (the implication being here is that Abrahamic Religions are “exclusivist”and therefore questionable at best).

Such adherents (presumably to the Abrahamic religionssometimes see syncretism as a betrayal of their pure truth. By this reasoning, adding an incompatible belief corrupts the original religion, rendering it no longer true. Indeed, critics of a specific syncretistic trend may sometimes use the word “syncretism” as a disparaging epithet, as a charge implying that those who seek to incorporate a new view, belief, or practice into a religious system actually distort the original faith.

The consequence, according to (The Authority) of Keith Ferdinando, is a fatal compromise of the dominant religion’s integrity.[1] If one is unfamiliar with Professor Ferdinando then this reference, in this context, might be an acceptable appeal to authority for the validity of Syncretism, but even a passing acquaintance with his work would give this the lie.

Non-exclusivist systems of belief, (like modern progressive humanism)  on the other hand,  feel (reasonably) quite free to incorporate other traditions into their own whenever and however it suites their desires. In other words, adherence to revealed traditional Truth is a quaint superstition now superseded in our modern secular society.

Within that secular modern progressive society religious innovators often create new religions syncretically (New Age, Masons, some Protestant sects, Wicca, Pantheists, Scientology, Eckhart Tolle’s “Power of Now” movement, etc.)  as a mechanism to reduce inter-religious tension and enmity (seriously?), often with the at least partly intended effect of offending the original religions in question (but who cares about those superstitious savages).

Such modern religions, however, do maintain appeal to a less exclusivist audience (like we modern sophisticates where all Truth is merely fashionable opinion). Even the use of the term “audience” relegates religious belief to the sphere of “entertainment”. In other words, it is evil to point out the evil in the “other” or the “different” unless it is we the “good guys” pointing out the evil in those who disagree with us.

This “syncretic entertainment” argument employs the same logical subterfuge as the argument for “choice” enabling the rationalization of murder under the guise of abortion and the mother’s “right to choose” because the fetus is not a human but simply a piece of undifferentiated tissue. The big lie surfaces again with the case for abortion, in which it is an article of faith that “something” is “not something” unless and until we make an exception when we need it to be “something” rather than “not something” so that we can make handsome profit selling the “something”.

But at the same time as the child is described as “simply tissue” the abortionist is very careful in dismembering that child to insure recovery of undamaged organs which same organs are are then sold on the market to the highest bidder as “Human” organs of great value and for great profit for the abortionists and their companies.

That wonderful logical reality slip is where pointing out evil, drawing attention to evil is itself evil in the form of prejudice. Except that this sin is just A-OK when it is the progressives themselves painting all who disagree with them as evil, then it is all just fine, just like the explanation of the murder of a child as “simply the disposal of a piece of “undifferentiated tissue” which somehow miraculously becomes a few moments later, by some transubstantiation of the satanic abortion industry, a “human” organ for sale to the highest bidder.

This is the signature work of the Prince of This World, and his children follow his ways … “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” (John 8:44),

And this big lie, dressed in many little truths and facts, but twisted at the end into this perversion of logic, this ability to say one thing in support of one’s views regarding what that person finds desirable, and then immediately turn it all on it’s head and say the exact opposite a moment later as if somehow there is no connection, no logical connection, between the one and the other is the signal sign of the work of evil and the is the fundamental platform of the humanist progressive worship of man as the pinnacle of all things.

Well, that is quite a bit for now so I will move the rest of this to the next post – part II of

 

Cheers

Joe

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