Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

Counsel and Mercy … listening and acting …

“Wind of the Western Sea” Bill Douglas, from the album “Songs of Earth and Sky”, (1998)

Everything mentioned in my previous post may well be provably “true” but the focus of the post is not on “facts”, and “truth”, but rather on my personal “agenda”, my own “truth” so to speak, and my observations of my own conduct in what I am saying about “others”.

I am poking at the frailty of the faceless undefined “class” of persons who are “dealing” with the problems by ignoring them or just walking away, intentionally avoiding responsibility and commitment.

I am observing how I react to this perception and the offense I take at the actions of “others”. My reaction to the perceptions seems to be a wellspring of unhappiness which I choose to drink at.

Roaring Hairy EGO!

Roaring Hairy EGO!

“Sniff …” obviously crass lower castes, every mother’s son of them. And well, wouldn’t you know it, the great roaring hairy legged EGO strikes again. I find nothing considerate, merciful or charitable in judging perceived actions of “the others”.

Isn’t it really more reasonable, and merciful, to assume a level of misery on the part of the “others” that may be even greater than my own in my observations and feeling of desperate helplessness, Oh Lord, the problems are so BIG and my ability is so small.

I used to have a default position with respect to the goings on around me to the effect that “one should never assume malice on the part of actors when simple stupidity and incompetence  will account for what is going on“. Another iteration of these sentiments is any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice“.

Better Get My fire Suit Ready ...

Better Get My Fire Suit Ready …

So my almost daily experience ofActive Stupid” on the part of many managers and directors in government service (outside my 8 years in the military but including my 15 years in “Social Services”, “Justice”, and “Health Care”) informed my acid view of all bureaucracies everywhere and my uncharitable opinions about the incumbents of these civilian food chains.

Even these “charitable” defaults of giving the actors “the benefit of the doubt” about motives fail the sniff test for Charity and Mercy. Every event may be a “fact” but reality on the ground indicates that if God judges me the same way I have been judging others for years, then I am truly screwed and I better get my fire suit ready.

Isn’t it truly more reasonable to assume a level of misery which blinds the “others” to everything except their very own ocean-like puddle of misery. Charity, charity, charity, compassion, compassion, compassion, mercy, mercy, mercy. What am I blinded to, and by what?

So, once again, regard the position of modern man, Progressive man, secular man, and consider the spiritual life of that subject man. In looking at myself as an example of the subject man, I am like a child, walking a dark path without help or guidance, and finding myself at a fork in the road, I find I cannot proceed alone.

While I have a few clues about which road leads to home I fail at every turn to act upon those clues. Two roads lie before me, one leading to the kingdom of the spirit, the kingdom of God, and the other to the kingdom of this world, the kingdom of the flesh, of Mammon.

On the one hand, we have the calm peaceful kingdom of the spirit. I think we all inherently wish to choose the kingdom of God, but unfortunately the Kingdom of Mammon also has it’s attractions, and these attractions try to seduce us to their path. We struggle against these attractions and allurements.

How is one to deal with the kingdom of the flesh and all its passions and attractions and appetites? A couple of things come up, the first being listening to God’s voice … Huh? what does that mean … I never “hear” God’s voice.

The world I live in is so noisy with all the various temptations of the secular yelling their mating calls at the tops of their various voices. I am distracted and deafened by the voices of creatures and filled up with the noises of the world and the answering noises of my own appetites.

The voice of the Holy Spirit is the “whistling of a gentle air” (I Kings 19, 12). To hear this voice we must be silent, silent exteriorly and silent interiorly, only in silence can the the voice of God be heard. Second, I am attached to my own judgement and the limited councils of my own wonderful mind. Even a little attachment  to my own ideas is sufficient to deafen me to the voice of the Father.

Attachment to my own opinions seems to be never good, even when the opinions are about good things. These attachments to my own opinions and views seem to be rooted in my self love, and as I have remarked before, if I am full of myself there is no room for God, and I think I am unlikely to hear his gentle voice if I have shut him out of a soul which is full of myself.

Like a sailing vessel which cannot be moved by the wind as long as it is moored, so my soul cannot enjoy the precious influence of the voice of God if it is “moored” to it’s own opinions. Trying to practice awareness of the presence of God, and trying to stay recollected minute by minute, hour by hour, so easy to say, so hard to do, overcoming the noisy habits of a lifetime. Listening to the “whistling of a gentle air“.

Speak then, O Lord, for Thy servant heareth; Thou hast the words of eternal life. Speak to me, that it may be for me some comfort to my soul, and for the amendment of my whole life, and also to Thy praise and glory, and everlasting honor” (Saint John of The Cross Imit III 2, 1-3)

Anyway, more thinking … more praying … listening

Cheers

Joe

Shikamaru’s expression “What a drag.” was “めんどくさい (mendokusai)” in the original Japanese Naruto manga and anime, which translates as – “troublesome” or “bothersome”.

This is a very common phrase to use when you don’t want to do something. I find behaving myself with charity and mercy and listening to the voice of God to be troublesome and bothersome. Not easy to put into practice.

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Pen as Sword - Social Commentary, The Inner Struggle

Justice … part 2 … do we actually want Justice?

Hamabe No Uta” (Narita), Jean-Pierre Rampal, from the album “Rampal: Japanese Folk Melodies”, (1978)

We sometimes speak of the “old order” in a disparaging way, the old order of “Dead White Males” comes to mind, or “Victorian” is another variation on the same sentiment. What we are really talking about when we refer to the “old order” is the philosophical root and foundation of our Western Christian Civilization from which ALL our notions of right and wrong and morality derive.

Did the abandonment of the old order really set us free to realize the full potential of humanity, the Ubermensch, the Overman, Overhuman, Above-Human, Superman, Super-human, Ultra-human, Higher-Person, Higher-Being. The previous are just a few of the myriad variations of the new Narcissism of the 20th and 21st century. What can sincerity and justice mean in a society where I am all and where all truth is relative to and related to my desires and appetites, my self image, my ego?

The lipstick of “moral relativism” doesn’t turn the pig into a beautiful person … a pig, is a pig, is a pig, no matter how much makeup we slather onto it. Moral relativism is simply “license to behave anyway I want” dressed up in a tux and ready to party. License is related to licentiousness – graphically – hmmmm.

Generally, in our current culture, people end up believing nothing—or holding that nothing is certain, even in matters relating to Natural Law, which all people know through the use of their reason alone. Everything that happens now gets attributed to some sort of “Karma” with no responsibility, express or implied, on any side by any party. No respect, rights, obligations, duty, responsibility means … what exactly?

These days we even have the mythology of the Buddha allegedly saying: “Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.” This is a very bad translation of the Kalama Sutta — so bad, in fact, that it contradicts the actual message of the Sutta, which says that reason and common sense are not sufficient for ascertaining the truth.

Mohandas Gandhi

Cool quote!  From a cool guy! That’s what I read …  Is it true? Did Gandhi actually say this? How do I know?  Waddya Talkin About?  I saw it on Pinterest!  It MUST be true … Huh?

So this culture, this society of Secular Humanist Progressivism, this new normal of moral relativism, is a direct result and morbid offspring of private interpretation of “Truth”,  just one more of many “I will not serve!” moments in both angelic and human history.  And with totally predictable consequences … for if a person has a right to decide for himself what the Truth is, this says, in effect, that he is his own personal doctor of truth, (“Doctor of the Church”) whatever one’s theological and moral training, and of course we have Pontius Pilot’s question: “What is Truth?”.

We find ourselves replying that “Truth” is whatever we say it is … because we are the sole arbiter of truth, right?

If a person has a right to decide for himself what the Truth is, this says that every person has a personal right to choose whether he will believe or not believe certain teachings. Given this starting point the individual easily slides into the position that he has a right to believe anything, or even nothing at all. This might well have been the start, the wellspring of the slippery slope of “rights” without “responsibilities”.

On the one hand, our modern society MUST concede every person a civil right to reject religious or moral truth, as far as he individually is concerned, only because both religion and society must allow a person to exercise his free will and to choose for himself whether he will accept or reject God’s Revelation and/or Natural Law, and/or criminal law and provincial law and municipal law for that matter, because as we all acknowledge, every human being is endowed with free will from the very moment of conception.

Canadian Figurehead

On the other hand, he, (or “she” or even “it”) – mustn’t get too politically incorrect here lest we offend some entitled rainbow singularity –  the ONE who rejects the truth must unfortunately, unavoidably and  personally bear whatever evil consequences result from his, hers, or it’s own personal choice of the magical fantasy which is their personal reality. Thinking things like “Drinking and driving” won’t have bad outcomes for me ’cause I’m special, “doing drugs” won’t affect my job and my family because I’m special, “building my home on a flood plane” won’t have bad outcomes ’cause I’m special … and so on and so forth.

Worshiping at the pool …

For those accustomed to indulging in “Magical Thinking” it is sometime a shock to discover that actions and beliefs have consequences in the real world. We believe that it can’t possibly be our fault, that the outcome in question can’t be the result of our own bad choices, NO WAY EH! Hence the almost universal predilection for playing the blame game, we blame circumstances, or other people, or the economy or the politics of the day, FOR MAKING US “FEEL” BAD about the inevitable consequences of our own bad, ill-considered choices and actions.  All in order to permit perpetuation of our well loved, familiar, comfortable, personal fantasies which are crippling us and preventing the existence of Justice .

For some, this view may be difficult or offensive because they are unaccustomed to hearing other views which differ from the generally accepted mainstream view. The “I’m OK, Your OK” generation and their children and grand-children are especially sensitive to being reminded of past failures and disasters and having current failings remarked upon. They don’t want to hear anyone commenting on the likely outcomes obvious with even a cursory examination of the reality on the ground.

We have “become as gods” and will brook no objections or interruptions to our worship of the image in the pool. But …

C.S. Lewis Quote

In spite of that, or perhaps because of that, if there is to be any hope of long term survival, it is critically important at this point in history, to reflect on what has gone wrong. Can anyone seriously believe that we live in the best of all worlds, the promised land of the Enlightenment?

American Figurehead

Without Truth and Sincerity how can there be Justice? Who do we believe?  Do we turn to our figureheads for guidance? It always seems that our Great Canadian Societal Figureheads prattling on to the media and all the talking heads doing interviews with our Canadian versions of Rock Stars … always seem to be selling some version of “What is Truth?”

This dystopian emotional wasteland, this distilled “Canadianess”, produced by our daily confrontations with reality in our polite society is the meat of the “Cognitive Dissonance” part of “Cognitive Dissonance in a Progressive Tyranny”.

For want of sincerity and a concomitant want of justice we have adopted “politically correct” niceness as our defining national characteristic.

Canadian Figurehead …

As David Warren writes:Compliant, complaisant, acquiescent. Docile, submissive, ingratiating. Servile, tractable, obsequious. Ever deferential, glad to be of use. This is what my fellow Canadians have become, though we were not in the past, according to my elders (now mostly dead). When unreasonable demands were made upon them, their inclination was to stiffly resist. Ours is to be chumps, patsies, dupes, treacle saps. In our vanity we think that we are “nice” people, and celebrate our own gormlessness.” “What is Truth?”

American Figurehead …

Lest we forget, or maybe we never knew it, but the generation that fought and died at Vimy Ridge was in no way “nice” and “gormless”. The generation that sang: “D-day Dodgers knew everything there was to know about push-back against gormlessness (great series of YouTube videos at this link – none of this shows up in Social Studies, does it?).

Lest we forget, Canadians were not always a mob of gormless poltroons. Where are they now? My elders (now mostly dead). Realization dawned one day in the midst of World War III, that the real enemy was not, most undoubtedly not, the young kid clinging on to the Soviet frigate 100 yards away. He was me.

Canadian Figurehead

The real enemy was back home in the comfortable office towers and media redoubts taking pot shots at the ones doing the bleeding.  The real enemy was back home in the Kremlin, and in Washington, and in Ottawa, and in London. The real enemy was the figureheads and their agenda of “What is Truth?”

Just in case we missed something and mistakenly understand “gormless” as synonymous with “nice” we can look at a definition of sorts: “Gormless began life as the English dialect word “gaumless”, which was altered to the modern spelling when it expanded into wider use in the late 19th century.

The origins of “gaumless” are easy to understand; the word derives from a combination of the dialect noun gaum, meaning “attention” or “understanding,” and the suffix -less. “Gaum” also functions as a verb in some dialects, where it means “to pay attention to” and “to understand.” An unrelated verb gaum means “to behave in a stupid or awkward manner.”

There’s also a noun gaum, meaning “a stupid doltish person.” But none of these are as commonly used nowadays as “gormless”, which itself is most frequently seen in British English.

Canadian Figureheads

True synonyms would be: airheaded, birdbrained, bonehead, boneheaded, brain-dead, brainless, bubbleheaded, chuckleheaded, dense, dim, dim-witted, doltish, dopey (also dopy), dorky [slang], dull, dumb, dunderheaded, empty-headed, fatuous, stupid [chiefly British], half-witted, knuckleheaded, lamebrain (or lamebrained), lunkheaded, mindless, oafish, obtuse, opaque, pinheaded, senseless, simple, slow, slow-witted, soft, softheaded, thick, thickheaded, thick-witted, unintelligent, unsmart, vacuous, weak-minded, witless.

Now don’t I just feel SO much better in my nice Canadian gormlessness … sigh. “What is Truth?”

And what about Gratitude? Is there really anything to be grateful for in a polite society lacking in sincerity and justice?  (more to follow on gratitude – we need more of it)

Cheers

Joe

After Darkness comes the Dawn …

 

and Breakfast …

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Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

When The Laws Are Evil, Are We The Outlaws? … Am I A Reactionary?

“Billy – title theme”, Bob Dylan, from the soundtrack album of “Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid”, (July 1973)

Wondering these days  about how to encapsulate my point of view, or even if that matters at all. Our society is addicted to tags and classifications by which folks can avoid actually getting to know others and just easily slip them into a convenient box. I find it far easier to identify what I am NOT than to articulate what I am.

Not a right wingnut nor a left wingnut, not a progressive, not a socialist, not a Communist, not a Republican, not a Liberal or a Democrat, not a Conservative and still less a New Democrat or National Socialist, not really a “Party Animal” at all, I find some things to agree with in almost all the platforms and much to disagree with in ALL the platforms.

Catholic but not a hypersuperueberpapalist (to use one of Fr. Hunwicke’s very useful coinages). So what am I? Not a nuckledragger regardless of the opinions of sundry relatives, not a fly-over country Luddite clinging to my guns and religion, not really a fan of any fashionable linear classification on some arbitrary plane such as the  usual extreme right/extreme left continuum.  Not slotted or boxed, as in someone’s poor strawman.

I see folks rather as a spherical complex of radii of various strengths and lengths embracing the entire gamut of human feelings, positions and thoughts. No linear continuums in that model.

I am more and more thinking that I feel like a “Reactionary“.

Wikipedia defines:   “A reactionary is a person who holds political views that favor a return to the status quo ante, the previous political state of society, which they believe possessed characteristics (discipline, respect for authority, etc.) that are negatively absent from the contemporary status quo of a society. As an adjective, the word reactionary describes points of view and policies meant to restore the status quo ante.[1]

Political reactionaries are at the right-wing of a political spectrum; yet, reactionary ideologies can be radical, in the sense of political extremism, in service to re-establishing the status quo ante. In political discourse, being considered a reactionary is generally regarded as negative; yet the descriptor “political reactionary” has been adopted by the likes of the Austrian monarchist Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn,[2] the Scottish journalist Gerald Warner of Craigenmaddie,[3] the Colombian political theologist Nicolás Gómez Dávila, and the American historian John Lukacs.[4] “

Seems like a good start. Where do I go from here

Cheers

Joe

001-the-long-defeat“He gives his harness bells a shake To ask if there is some mistake. The only other sound’s the sweep Of the easy wind and downy flake. The woods are lovely, dark, and deep, But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep.”  Robert Frost

 

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Pen as Sword - Social Commentary

El Humanismo Secular es Pecado – Part 2

(continued from last post)
… (the “I’m OK, Your OK” generation, their children, and grand-children are especially sensitive to being reminded of past failures and disasters and having current failings remarked on) …

In spite of that, or perhaps because of that it is critically important at this point in history, to reflect on what has gone wrong. Can anyone seriously believe that we live in the best of all worlds, the promised land of the Enlightenment? Did the abandonment of the old order really set us free to realize the full potential of humanity, the Overman,  Overhuman,  Above-Human,  Superman,  Super-human, Ultra-human, Higher-Person, Higher-Being. The previous are just a few of the myriad variations of the new Narcissism of the 20th century. The views and values here discussed are so important to each person individually, and to the very survival of our society as a whole, that every thinking human being must become familiar with the issues covered here.

Secular Humanist Progressivism in essence says and believes that there is no objective truth. To quote Pontius Pilate, “What is truth?”, is a patently absurd question. And in the practical order of our social and political lives Secular Humanist Progressivism leads to a practiced atheism, that is, to a situation in society where, though we do not deny the existence of God, we nonetheless must conduct ourselves vis-a-vis one another as if God did not exist, because we must in effect deny that He has a right to tell man what to do.  This situation results from Secular Humanist Progressivism ‘s denying in effect that there is one body of revealed truth, or even Natural Law, with which man must comply. Secular Humanist Progressivism therefore destroys adherence to the Natural Law, that law which we all understand to be true without the assistance of divine Revelation. But it also destroys the universal acceptance among people of divine Revelation.

Adherence to both the supernatural and the natural order, therefore, breaks down under its influence, and the result is chaos in individual lives and anarchy in society. This is patently obvious for any impartial observer. Look around you today, follow the media, read the literature, watch the movies, observe the politics, experience government administration, LIVE in our modern culture, and taste reality. No thinking, intelligent person can conclude otherwise than that we are “Going to Hell in a hay-basket: as the saying goes. The universal secular humanist progressive ideas that “one religion is basically as good as another” and that “it does not matter what a person believes so long as he is a good person” were spawned almost automatically and by logical necessity due to the context leading up to where we find ourselves today.  Let’s take a look back behind the Modernist’s Wizard curtain.

By the year 304 A.D., Christianity (read here “Catholicism”) had pretty well permeated and converted the ancient Roman world, so that with the victory of Constantine the Great at that time in the battle of the Malvian Bridge and with his succession as Roman Emperor in that year, Catholicism became the official religion of society.  And as the Roman world more and more influenced its neighbors, especially the northern European peoples, the civilization that developed there was Roman-Catholicized civilization, or Catholicized-Roman civilization, if you will. At the time of the Protestant Reformation (read “Revolt”), starting in 1517 and continuing throughout that century, European civilization had already been well formed by the Catholic religion for, at the most, 1,200 years in some regions to, at the least, 400 years in others.  Don’t take my word for it. Just read any pre – Public School system “Social Studies” history (see Magical Thinking” in previous post) to discover undisputed facts about our historical past.

(to be continued)

Cheers
Joe

CSR

 

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Life in a small town, Pen as Sword - Social Commentary

This and That and lookin’ down the road into 2015

Books to read: Hurricane, I Zombie, The Martian, BP World Energy Picture to 2030 …

Avoiding news programming in general, except for Global for the morning weather and traffic so than I can savor the day and my steaming coffee after not having to experience either for the last few years. It’s -20 and accidents all over the place … traffic is snarled on the ring road – again – sigh, these eggs and muffins are some good boy … store is open but no-one here yet ’cause they are all still shoveling out …

Bloomberg seems a reasonable source of entertainment if only because they may actually have some small doses of routine daily reality divorced from all the progressive talking heads holding forth with their deep views on all the important issues on all the other channels.

I find it uplifting to avoid the daily parade of brain dead zombies of all nationalities, races, sexes, denominations and parties desperately trying to shut down, prevent, chew off, or otherwise encumber the very hands that feed them. It very much feels that we are living through a zombie apocalypse right now!

Possible book plot here – the masses of zombie cattle ruled over by the ultra sparkly beautiful vampire elite using tame werewolves as enforcers with a remnant of underground angels still stubbornly clinging to the good and striving to reverse the inevitable decline and ultimate demise of the world.

TAADAAAH! Enter the King!   I’ve read worse …We are not expected to win … simply to remain faithful, hold to the last man, the 300, the Alamo, The Battle of the Bulge, The Birkenhead Drill … Honor, Duty, Courage, Discipline, Sacrifice, Semper Fi my Lord.

Surviving and transcending the gradual collapse and demise of civilization requires an internal separation from all previous “normal” associations … family, state, nation, none of these matter one bit. What passes for civilization these days resembles a psychotic with huge self harm ideation. If our culture were a patient we would be on suicide watch.

Nuke or meteor hits Toronto! (or Washington).  Really bad day for some progressives. Folks in flyover country watching the satellite news : HEY! Toronto’s (or Washington) gone!  WOW that must suck for them, eh?  Yea, probly … well, gotta go feed the cows …life goes on. I wonder of Ontario (or New York)  will use less gas and fresh milk now?

Small town shopkeeper … far from city … good hard working community … friends and like minded folks all going about their daily lives of working and value added everywhere … local markets, crops and cattle, energy and transportation, fields of crops all the way to the horizon with wells poking up all over the place and quiet herds grazing, the hum of tires on the small highways to the grid … all leading to the big city …

pipelines, light manufacturing, repair and services, medical and health care, things to consider: supply chains, product shortages, gubmint program cutbacks, interest rates, inflation, deflation, tax rates …  are we bomb proof? Do I have a bulletproof mind? When the balloon goes up where do things go bad fast? Where do things carry on pretty much as normal? Where do folks push paper and where do folks push tools … where do only bad guys and werewolves have guns and where do all the good guys have guns and lots of ammo and know how to use them very effectively?  Ever kill a deer at 500 yards?  Doesn’t happen by accident ya know …

What happens when the self centered suits in gubmint land discover that reality isn’t following their magical policy plan?

Cheers

Joe

CSR

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