Myth, Magic, Islamic State, and Roman Catholicism’s Greatness
Myth, Magic, Islamic State, and Roman Catholicism’s Greatness:
Catholic Demythologization of Temporal Order for Its Sacralization and Sanctification
By Joseph Andrew Settanni
On the Restoration of All Things in Christ – E Supremi, St. Pope Pius X
Why is so much of contemporary life burdened with an excess of seemingly pandemic mythical and magical nonsense, talismanic thinking, that must irrationally effuse through Western society and its culture? How did the typical norm of an awkward emotional and mental infantility, adult childishness, become, moreover, so intolerably regnant these days?
The passing modern age, now devolving itself into the low era of postmodernity, must live with the baleful consequences of how modernity had so greatly embraced, or rather re-embraced, both myth and magic, especially as it crescively rejected classical Natural Law teachings.
Modernity qua itself means the mindset, e.g., of Niccolò Machiavelli, Thomas Hobbes, René Descartes, John Locke, David Hume, Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin, Adolf Hitler, Martin Heidegger, and Jürgen Habermas. The normative or classical mindset, in rather clear comparison, would refer, e. g., to Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, Joseph de Maistre, Leo Strauss, Michael Oakeshott, M. E. Bradford, and Frederick D. Wilhelmsen.
This, the noting of myth and magic, is a too often neglected matter that is both amazing and enlightening to reasonably recount and extrapolate, which, at first, seems so incredible and discordant with what is popularly thought or generally surmised. Basic rationality too often, one supposes, appears to be one distinctive hallmark of the often celebrated modern or, better put, progressive mind.
But, in sociology, there are the interesting terms of latent and manifest, which can be usefully used here; the former is descriptive of what is not seen on the surface of society or social order, the latter is what seems to be too obvious or quite noticeable kept on the surface of reality.
These beliefs known as myth and magic, assumed to have been eradicated by sophistication, became instead integral features of a triumphant modernity haughtily proud of its secularism, positivism, materialism, pragmatism, and relativism. All of which, dramatically and tragically, helped to lead to World War I, World War II, atomic weapons, many genocides, and other such rather dubious “delights” of modern man, besides the predictive dead end of hubristic nihilism.
Christianity and Truth
Many centuries ago, Catholicism qua Christianity had then demythologized the temporal order,1 meaning that the older eras of nature spirits, heathen gods and goddesses, the evil eye, superstitions, magic charms, enchanted forests, devil worship, and all such cognate rot had been tremendously displaced, if not entirely eliminated, by the spread of the Catholic Faith.
Catholicism had, in effect, liberated the older world from the darkness of the apparitions and superstitions that unfortunately had retarded social, cultural, and civilizational vitality, which made the Church, e. g., the inspirer and originator of what then became the liberal arts and sciences to be found at the great medieval universities. The academic disciplines of the Trivium and Quadrivium had, thus, assisted in the civilizing and educating of Europeans for centuries.
It was a monumentally tremendous success of beneficent Christianization, the New Testament, that had advanced civilization and culture simultaneously, meaning wherever and whenever the Faith had, thus, sincerely and confidently triumphed within a host society and its culture.
Ironically, this also helped to pave the way toward a later secularization of human society and culture by freeing men from certain pre-Christian aspects of human life, meaning from the limitations created upon the spirit of man as to why he had much feared a world filled with miscellaneous demons and apparitions that, among other difficulties, denied the existence of free will.
The Catholic doctrine of free will 2, building creatively upon the useful insights of the learned Greek and Roman ancients, assisted mightily in genuinely liberating humanity from a world of weary darkness and often fatalistic uncertainty or mystical pagan irrationality; this noted positive advance was much added to by knowledge of the Old Testament, of course, without question.
Added to all this was the Church’s adamant defense of the classical Natural Law tradition and the important Catholic political principles of solidarity, meaning membership and brotherhood in a common Christendom, and subsidiarity, the basic decentralization of political power and authority by seeking to address grievances at the lowest levels first before, if and when needed, eventually going to the highest.
The Church, also, favors a loving understanding of and support for social justice unlike all the modernist, corrupted versions of the term that necessarily do make a total mockery of it. What is wanted, in further reiteration and useful clarification, is the holy and comprehensive ideal of a totally Catholic koinos kosmos (a blessed public world or lovingly shared universe) opposed to the ever distinctly and antagonistic anti-Catholic idios kosmos (a secularized, relativist world or endless cold multiverses.)
The above cited accomplishments and achievements of the Church, filling the vacuum made by the Fall of the Roman Empire, were not done without often overcoming many great numbers of enormous difficulties, besides the potent hazards of so many nasty barbarian invasions that had created tremendous havoc and mayhem galore. Various types of atheists with their hubris, and especially dedicated secularists, do rarely acknowledge this significantly important fact.
Aided by the best thinking and considerations of the pagan philosophers, the Christian faith offered a commonsensical, reasonable, logical, understandable, and rational worldview and a presentable world, subject to an overarching metaphysical order, defended by truth and justice in the ever glorious name of Jesus Christ. When confronting wild barbarian hordes freely intent upon massive destruction, pillage, rape, and wild slaughter, there was, at many times, not much more than the Cross of Christ that could oppose them.
Modernity would have none of this, in its truly reactionary attitude of sinking back into myth and magic, so indicative of its intellectual rebarbarization, efforts of the “new barbarians,” of the Western world; it ever imperiously demanded, instead, the prevalent mythical and magical glorification of reified Man as an earthly god of power. But, Catholic teachings, in adamant opposition, would have none of this absurd and backward-looking nonsense, for true religion is the direct opposite of (dark) superstition, it is a liberating, redemptive, and positive force for the human spirit, meaning support for the children of God.
As so many authors, both Catholics and non-Catholics, have demonstrated repeatedly, this, among many other absolutely great achievements and accomplishments, had made the very existence of modern, empirical science possible. One could cite among such numerous volumes as: Thomas Woods, Jr.’s How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization and Triumph: The Power and the Glory of the Catholic Church, a 2000-Year History by H.W. Crocker III. Q. E. D.
Both primitive and pre-Christian men, it needs to be here historically recalled, were so beset by many unpredictable or seemingly unknown forces, believed to be earthly and/or astral in origins, that could so whimsically or otherwise determine one’s fate or destiny for good or ill. They were, in fact, completely freely offered the only true liberation, the salvific liberation by, in, and through Jesus Christ. A then competing Mithras religion had demanded the sacrifice of at least a single bull, which was, of course, rather cost prohibitive for impoverished slaves and poverty-stricken peasants, among others. A way out of the black, pessimistic, fatalistic gloom was given gratis.
The Church, over time, had sagaciously banished these metaphysically oppressive forces of darkness and vile superstitions by invalidating and refuting the many myths and the numerous claims of magic supposedly possessed by such often presumably dire forces and phantasms. (This was, ironically, regretted by noted modernist thinkers such as Wagner and Nietzsche who thought that Christianity had always wrongly robbed peoples of their native vitality and raw inspiration. Nietzsche, for instance, positively despised and denigrated Christian humility as slavish nonsense unworthy of vital modern men, especially for his domineering Übermensch.)
It was a superbly worthy achievement of a still much more worthier institution, namely, the One, Holy and Apostolic Roman Catholic Church, its teachings, and its often martyred missionaries, who, with enormous difficulty, had brought about a true and invigorating enlightenment, while attempting to more and more Christianize and, thus, civilize an aberrant and sinful humanity.
Modernity, with a fierceness only matched by that of savages, necessarily brought back myth and magic during the rise of the secular side of the Renaissance, the Protestant revolt, the European Enlightenment, and various terrible and violent eras of revolutionism, completely inclusive of all of Fascism, Nazism, and Communism, of course. The Nietzschean will to power can be seen, along with Machiavellian pragmatism.
Historically, this necessarily runs the full mystical gambit from, e. g., the Machiavellian myth of a cynical virtu, the fiction of a Lutheran or Calvinist God, Hobbes’ mythical Leviathan qua the State, Locke’s tabula rasa, Adam Smith’s invisible hand, Rousseau’s volonté generale, Kant’s mythic notion of “God” as an anthropomorphic projection, Bentham’s utilitarian calculus, and Hegel’s (magical) dialectic. Each has its inherently mesmerizing qualities, as with all others, of course, mentioned in the very next paragraph.
One can relatedly reference such indicative matters as: Darwin’s totally tautological “survival of the fittest,” Marx’s predicted withering away of the State through proletarian magic, Nietzsche’s death of God, Freudianism, the Social Gospel, Jungianism, Nazi race theory, (progressive) eugenics, Weberian Rationalisierung (rationalization) and Entzauberung (disenchantment), the minimum wage 3, scientism, behaviorism, Randian (atheist) Objectivism, the radical Spirit of Vatican II, anarcho-capitalism, Liberation Theology, multiculturalism, environmentalism, the postconciliar Church, climate change (hysteria), victimhood (aka the “religion” of unctuous self-pity), and, of course, deconstructionism.
And, there is, no doubt, much else that is similarly either magical or mythical and, sometimes (or just more often than usually realized), both at once. Definitely, none of this ever makes a dedicated modernist or postmodernist blush from shame or, perhaps, the legitimate twinge of any guilt. Such a mindset, dedicated to relativism unbound, is then integrally antithetical to the innate maturity and a true sense of responsibility existing requisite ever to the highly reflective classical/normative mind.
Liberals and Leftists are rather too sanguine, with their ever multiplicitous fictions, which do wrongly degrade epistemology, through ideological verbiage, in fairly odd service to a reified ontology (read: Utopia). Witness how, e. g., a once mere grammatical term, gender, has quite weirdly replaced “sex” as to a natural designation; it is a clear type of Orwellian Newspeak trying to make what used to be thought of as normality abnormal and vice versa. And so, it cannot be otherwise with the anti-normative mindset as has been illustrated.
Admittedly, there is here expressed a quite hardened, though healthy, skepticism, a marked incredulity, of modernity and postmodernity as to their dubious intellectual fruits. In contrast, a Christocentric society and culture, the affirmation of holiness, is much to be preferred, and there are those who have defended such a notion in various terms.
A name now fading quite rapidly from human memory, Fr. Charles N. R. McCoy, had become very alerted to how tremendously much myth and magic had been reintroduced, into social, cultural, and political life, by modernity; this was by his being a pupil of Ernst Cassirer (1874 – 1945), author of The Philosophy of the Enlightenment (1932) and, also, the posthumously published: The Myth of the State (1946).
Oddly or not, Ernst Cassirer was a true devotee of the spirit of the Enlightenment, a liberal of his era, who, nonetheless, could recognize both myth and magic when he saw them manifestly existing and, moreover, easily thriving in the various political, philosophical, social, and cultural contexts of the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. Such an understanding, of course, does not fit the usual and expected bright narrative given by the many ardent or very enthusiastic supporters of modernity, especially of its atheistic revolutionism or the hubristic collectivist spirit.
Fr. McCoy, wisely, had successfully built upon and extended the most philosophically intriguing and mentally illuminating notions of Cassirer, in a useful prolific manner, quite suitable for his rather high intelligence. One can read McCoy’s The Structure of Political Though and On the Intelligibility of Political Philosophy: Essays of Charles N.R. McCoy edited by Charles Nicholas Reiten McCoy and Fr. James V. Schall, S. J. But, where does Catholicism or the Church come into this particular discussion?
Prior to Vatican Council II in the early to mid-1960s, the Roman Catholic Church had once been vigorously engaged in solidly battling, as hard as it reasonably could, against the highly invasive myth and magic engendered by the rampant philosophical nominalism of modernity and its quite naturally attendant neopaganism that, in fact, logically results and exists.
Today, one sees how thoroughly the current Holy Father, Pope Francis, has both willingly and lovingly embraced the destructive Spirit of Vatican II and its ever lively promotion of the evil and supremely mythical and magical notions of postmodernity; the April 8, 2016 Amoris Laetitia document, completely approved by him, adopts fundamental moral relativism as the fallible guide for Catholics concerning family and sexual matters. Such bold postmodern thought is the assuredly natural and brashly nihilistic child of an increasingly enervated, indolent, and anemic modernity conceived, as it were, in its rather decrepit old age.
What the Holy Pontiff has embraced, however, is clearly an anthropocentric death wish – with “acts of conscience” allowing for an extremely increased latitude for abortions and promoting significantly augmented artificial birth-control unto the fuller self-extermination of peoples — set so against the Church’s previous historical, religious, loving, and theological effort to fully demythologize the secular or terrene order of this world, in the holy effort to righteously and spiritually transform all things in, by, and through Jesus Christ.
This is, therefore, for the ever much needed sacralization and sanctification of human and natural reality for the greater glory of God. Instead, there is now the ongoing and demonic pursuit of the supposed greater glory of Man, his ontological reification, championed, of course, by the evil Spirit of the Second Vatican Council, which can be then empirically observed, more and more, by its truly horrendous and vilely devastating aftermath; this surely now includes Amoris Laetitia. But, what can be reasonably known as to the interconnectedness and relatedness, the implications and ramifications, of these matters?
Postmodernity celebrates, as but a few examples, such myths as multiculturalism, PC thinking, diversity, and deconstructionism aligned ideologically with the magical notions of a Utopian world-community, a not-too-disguised form of brave millennialism, freed of all war, famine, pestilence, and all conflicts. This is seen to be overtly exemplified and, moreover, praised to the nth degree in John Lennon’s nihilistic and so very representative, languid song: Imagine.
All the fundamental elements of such rabid mythical and magical thinking and regard can be found in that lyrical composition singing hosannas to a Utopian vision having no need for any ultimate and requisite metaphysical order (aka God). Secularization is, thus, greatly praised to the skies.
Nor does any really known human imperfection, theologically referred to as sin, ever come into the truly idyllic picture painted with such unctuous, rapturous, and contemptible words faithful to secular humanism’s divined ecstasy and open contempt for the normative/classical mind. This may be paralleled, as to insights, by C. S. Lewis’ thoughtful though short book entitled: The Abolition of Man, which more than just suggests the evil involved.
In short, the amazing myth of neo-Pelagianism, meaning, as to a definition, the postmodern or, perhaps, simply ideological secularization of the extremely hoary Pelagian Heresy that Original Sin has never actually existed; thus, an ever true and limitless human perfectionism placed on earth, again, an idyllic millennialism, is supposed to be so fully attainable, without question or pause, if only truly absolute and ever peaceful secularization could, through some unspecified nirvana, be finally reached. This goes against all right reason, plain commonsense, and classical Natural Law teachings, of course.
Petty earthly gods carelessly cavorting in a terrene paradise, a New Eden, of their own making, which is, thus, supposed to be taken intellectually seriously, of course, as a then surely set, thoughtful, valid proposition. In other words, speculative hogwash qua moral argumentation that tends to conceal a thinly disguised death wish easily supportive of euthanasia, among other things.
And, e. g., no matter how many people get massacred by ISIS or similar Moslem agencies, this clearly intramundane belief in myth and magic, often correctly perceived as immanentism, persists strongly and directly divergent to all of the massively compiled rational and empirical evidence, history, (obviously) dead bodies, and documentation observed being set to the contrary.
The past great devotion to modernist myth and magic, at the beginnings of modernity with Machiavelli and then Luther, Hobbes, Locke, Kant, Bentham, Darwin, Marx, Freud, Lenin, Heidegger, and many others, has logically lead to the arrogant and avaricious worshipping of postmodernist myth and magic as compelling forces to contend with now and in the future.
The celebrated names of Michel Foucault, E. P. Thompson, Ronald Dworkin, R. D. Laing, Jurgen Habermas, Gyorgy Lukacs, Jean-Paul Sartre, Jacques Derrida, Slavoj Zizek, Ralph Milliband and Eric Hobsbawm are notably infamous in this regard. Utopianism, consequently, is then made to existentially seem, thus, compatibly normal and so “natural” as an ever contemporaneous way of thinking. One could informatively read Utopia, the Perennial Heresy by Thomas Molnar.
It is an insanely terrible feat that could only be brought about by the incredible power that myth and magic can and often do hold over the human mind when enslaved by sin, when afflicted by a significantly rampant and pervasive nominalism that so freely corrupts both cognition and human will simultaneously.
Most likely, Fr. McCoy would have been, by now, thoroughly appalled at the most serious and lamentable devolutions of the political, cultural, and social orders of the Western world, which is just an understatement actually. Civilization itself, assuming such a thing can be defined as existing, is at the near point of becoming epistemologically and ontologically indiscernible as to a concrete reality worthy of rational and axiological consideration.
Cynical observers, of course, would critically denounce such possibly incautious words as being rather much too optimistic and, perhaps, made only broadly in jest.
Of course, for instance, neither anything like heuristic Platonic myth nor harmless fairyland magic is being conjured up in this article. G. K. Chesterton, in his The Everlasting Man, reminds people that, “It seems strangely forgotten nowadays that a myth is a work of imagination and therefore a work of art.”
However, the clearly bold neopaganization of the Western world has disarmed it when faced, additionally, by the outrageous ravages of a resurgent and aggressive Islam that is obviously so very willing to act both barbarously and contemptuously toward an overtly effete, incestuously degenerate, and increasingly decadent West.
Many commentators have noticed what is called the reprimitivization of humanity that has occurred as people came to so witlessly embrace the many magical and mythical elements of assumed intellectual sophistication, sanctified oddly by modernity’s many civilizational failures, into the postmodernity of an “appropriately” neopaganized world. Thus, one gets the valuelessness of a nonjudgmental people with their relativist disvalued ethics and morals having no axiologically sustainable values to adamantly defend or even debate; it is an endlessly corruptive nonsense.
As the evil Culture of Death spreads, nonetheless, mindless people, meaning the degenerate cognoscenti and illuminati, still are shocked by ever rising levels of provoked crudity, brutality, barbarism, savagery, and outright nihilism that has become crescively acceptable, as being quite prevalent societal and cultural norms for a nihilistic postmodernity.4
One so easily sees this in how the formerly confident and self-deluded, mistaken, people of Brussels, Belgium had become seemingly paralytically perplexed beyond measure, due to the March 2016 Jihadi bombings; they had deliberately pampered and privileged, indulged and advantaged, them and, in turn, their avowed Moslem enemies yet turned upon them – what a shock!
They do vacuously wonder why, with their bizarre utopian attitudes, on how Western abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia should reflect ever negatively upon them and their beloved sybaritic lifestyles, exercised within an ethical and moral vacuum. No sense of true shame or guilt exists for them, except to the rather queer degree that they may be ashamed or feel guilty that they have not, in fact, yet engaged thoroughly enough in their so wanted and blatant nihilism.
It is not perceived that, because of the results of Original Sin 5 of which they claim they have no real consciousness of, the modernist effort to unceremoniously kick the metaphysical order out of the front door makes them try to push in an unadulterated metaphysics, of some strange kind, surreptitiously and somewhat guiltily through the back door. This is arrogance combined freely with an unadulterated idiocy supreme, which all, in turn, arrogantly spits upon the firmly opposed normative mentality, the perennial realm of right reason and commonsense.
The significantly incredible but true re-empowerment of both reified myth and magic, by the intellectual and other vile forces of a debased modernity, has substantially assisted in the firm consolidation and transformation of such myth and magic placed into the cause and progress of postmodernity. How so?
Millions of people are now emotionally, psychologically and cognitively enthralled powerfully so by mythical and magical notions of an ersatz “reality” that Christian people, both ancient and medieval, would have simply scoffed at with only well-deserved contempt and a profound ridicule. Multiculturalism and deconstructionism, as examples, would be simply laughed at as truly dumb jokes, never seriously accepted with any of today’s absurdly pious or devout secular reverence whatsoever.
Because of the aforementioned enthrallment, one sees, on what appears to be a daily basis by now, the weirdly but still notably magical notions of a Utopian, world-community Zeitgeist through which its subject populations, created as if by enchanted notions, are to so obtain a (terrene) ersatz blessedness and (ad hoc) beatification, which is reserved, as such in truth, by Christians, logically, only for Heaven. Of course, the supposed many gods of modernity and postmodernity demonically do indicate otherwise, meaning as the Weimarization continues.
Those enlightened Christians, however, not influenced by either myth or magic, and certainly all orthodox, traditionalist, Roman Catholics, do always realistically know, by being in constant touch with human and existential reality, that no truly genuine paradise can ever exist on earth. Useful heuristic reading would certainly include John Arthur Passmore’s The Perfectibility of Man.
The demonic utopianists (by whatever euphemism), however, in here citing that ever felicitous Voegelinian terminology, do greatly wish to immanentize the eschaton, to declare their New Eden on earth, regardless of the obviously plain truth (and, by the way, innumerable dead bodies) set ever to the contrary. Such error refutes itself. Q. E. D.
Moreover, the greatest superstition of them all, it has been well said, is to idiotically believe that one’s own era is entirely free of superstition, in this cited case, whether modernist or postmodernist in origin. A neat little volume to consult would surely be Superstition by Fr. Herbert Thurston, S.J., which delightfully gets to the heart of the matter, by showing how adherence to Catholicism can readily vanquish all those useless and false beliefs that hinder true experiential human progress, advanced culture, and higher civilization.
Sadly, Pope Francis 6, the Vicar of Christ on earth, has willingly chosen to surely become, in effect, the retrogressive, celebratory high priest of the nominalist reprimitivization of Western society, culture, and civilization; this is as it so nihilistically wallows in the stagnant regressive morass created by the mythical and magical notions of a degraded and debased humanity. In short, secularization, contrary to its often claimed expectations, has not achieved its supposed nirvana on this planet.
Of course, this evil belief in Godlessness always anticipates its ever assumed success in some wished-for never-never land, once again, the blissful New Eden “guaranteed” by ever artful existentialism and applied phenomenology, along with situation ethics and value neutrality.
And now, a very quite morally and spiritually disarmed, pitifully Man-worshipping, anthropocentric, intramundane fixation, denying all absolutes except for secularist relativism qua an absolute principle, must, thus, nakedly face a terrifyingly absolutist, tyrannous, bloodthirsty, Moslem jihadist movement eagerly bent upon world domination at any cost.
One can guess which side is the more likely to win. Of course, there is, however, still a real choice, instead of the deliberately empty and so droll valuelessness of postmodernity, the post-Enlightenment realm, filled with ominous existential and phenomenological angst, hubris, and trepidation lest a (dreaded) value judgment be made. It is on the same vain plateau as with positivism and its inherent fallacy of the immaculate perception.
The Western world can yet return to Roman Catholicism, to a then revived Christendom worth defending and loving, as the important moral and spiritual means to so much better combat an increasingly ferocious and thoroughly implacable enemy, having a religion that sanctions no real limits upon excessive brutality, cruelty, or, in fact, just sheer ruthlessness, concerning any of its opponents. However, to put the urgent matter mildly, this would seem to require a gigantic miracle from as yet unknown quarters, perhaps, the Blessed Virgin Mary may assist.
Until then, nothing hopeful appears to be reasonably perceivable upon the normal horizon of most human speculation and consideration. The so debased enthrallment of the postmodern mind, by its craven fascination with and ignominious subordination to vicariously imagined substitutes for reasoned thought and logical cognizance, bespeaks a contemptuous attitude full worthy of T. S. Eliot’s hollow men or, alternately, C. S. Lewis’ men without chests.
Modernity, Postmodernity, and What Next?
And, one of them, currently and conspicuously, does occupy the exalted and blessed Throne of St. Peter no less. That is why religion and theology are much more central to the survivability of human beings than is ever admitted to by the committed and deluded secularists who so often do applaud Pope Francis as being a kindred spirit. He is among the last believers in a now dying modernity, which sought to ironically reinvigorate, not really eliminate, such things as alchemy, wizardry, and the search for the always elusive Philosopher’s Stone.
Modernity, though not simply meaning the modern age as such, was not that very far from the concerns of sorcery and conjuring, of talismanic cognition. One could, thus, interestingly consult Eros and Magic in the Renaissance by Ioan P. Couliano; White Magic, Black Magic in the European Renaissance by Paola Zambelli, and The Queen’s Conjurer: The Science and Magic of Dr. John Dee, Advisor to Queen Elizabeth I by Benjamin Woolley. Renaissance Hermeticism was taken seriously, as can be seen in Frances Yates’ Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition.
Myth and magic, therefore, were not far from the thin surface of those past centuries and influenced greatly the lives of many who thought of themselves as surely advanced thinkers, especially when they “freed” themselves from the Catholic Church, or Christianity in general. Such an elucidation, these days, is genuinely needed and requisite to the important task of breaking old stereotypes as to which side exists as the true defender of mankind and the dignity of man as created by God, not as a mere unit of a omnipotent State.
Misinformed writers, generally speaking, include among the principal features of the European Enlightenment great advances in the supposed freeing of human thought from superstition and traditional (aka Christian) religion and the assumed enlightened retreat of the hoary concept of the supernatural before the ever glorious advance of empirical and, thus, seemingly liberating science. Oh, really? Historical evidence severely questions such biased tale evidencing much more progressivist propaganda than actual knowledge. Was there such absolute rationality?
But, such historical interest in magic and mysticism had more than significantly continued into the Enlightenment, as is noted by: Solomon’s Secret Arts: the Occult in the Age of Enlightenment by Paul Kleber Monod; The Rosicrucian Enlightenment by Frances A. Yates; Beyond the Witch Trials: Witchcraft and Magic in Enlightenment Europe by Owen Davies & Willem de Blécourt; and The Dark Side of the Enlightenment: Wizards, Alchemists, and Spiritual Seekers in the Age of Reason by John V. Fleming. Irrationality, in short, was celebrated as being a higher or esoteric form of deified Reason; mysticism easily combined with the worship of deified Reason.
Both Renaissance and Enlightenment had, therefore, definitely added quite a bit of darkness to the human mind, regardless of the enormous and continuing propaganda fixed to the contrary, and believed in by so many dedicated, in this case meaning deluded, atheists and humanists, of course. Rationalism resulted from the vain dedication to both the deification and reification of modern Reason superstitiously gaining god-like status, as is true of most of hubristic science today, which needs to be stated here explicitly, for proper exposition purposes.
How is it known, nevertheless, that myth and magic are dreary and fetid whenever compared to the grace and glory of God? Myth, though not equated, e. g., with noble Platonic myth, is the superstition of still primitive men, meaning those who seek explanations of metaphysical order that can be reduced to fables and stories mainly suitable for the childhood of a people. Reductionism, therefore, becomes the byword of thought for better seeking the simplification that perpetual children yearn for as a stunted way of understanding their circumscribed world.
Magic seeks to accomplish what the will and love of God can do without any effort whatsoever and with an instantaneous universality that makes any purported “magic” look so interminably feeble and simply pathetic, frail and pitiful; this is whenever placed in bright comparison with, literally, such unlimited greatness and profundity always and ever coexistent, by definition, with the Lord God Almighty.
And yet, modernity, and its legitimate and nominalist child known as postmodernity, prefers dark beliefs in magical and mythical concepts and constructs that keep up a mere pubescent and irrational pretense, while the ravaged reality of the souls of men do, thus, become rather aged with their multiplying vice and age-old sin.
Interestingly, it can be cited that Fascism and Nazism, even slightly more than Communism, thought of themselves as being true youth movements. Thus, as a contemporary example, it is not at all surprising how many, many young people flock around and with Bernie Sanders as being the latest, though rapidly aging, Socialist Piped Piper promising, once again, Utopia.
For many centuries, moreover, both “enlightened” and Protestant nominalist attacks upon Catholicism and the Catholic Church were alleged to be necessary preconditions for favoring, advancing, and vindicating the need for upholding the youthful spirit of Progress as evidence of humanity’s supposed rise up from both superstition and ignorance, from the hoary or simply antediluvian belief in Christianity in general.
Such informative books as Unpopular Essays in the Philosophy of History by Moorhouse F. X. Millar, S.J., have splendidly covered the realities involved, athwart the ever extravagant claims of modernity that have been often made repeatedly and, in truth, idiotically as well. The many astute refutations made, in this aforementioned work, offer a substantial and substantive antidote to the poisonous beliefs that haughtily claim that progress and science are to entirely replace the truths of faith and doctrines, meaning, actually, the rejection of the Roman Catholic Faith.
Nominalism, over time, ruined the ability of the human mind to quite properly and needfully distinguish between proper rationality and mere Rationalism; they are definitely not the same thing, but modernists had, increasingly, refused to rightly recognize such a tremendously salient fact of reality as to the critical imperative distinctions ever requisite to acquiring a genuine cognitive maturity and, as one hopes, allied perspicacity. Good reading, for encouraging this, includes Conscience and Its Enemies: Confronting the Dogmas of Liberal Secularism by Robert P. George.
One can, for instance, read such interesting and instructive works as Michael Oakeshott’s Rationalism in Politics and Other Essays to get a better understanding of the important issues involved; also, reading, e. g., Makers of the Modern Mind by Thomas P. Neill helps to better round out a needed education in these important matters.
It may need to be critically added, however, that all ideologies, easily inclusive of Communism, Liberalism, Conservatism, Libertarianism, Anarchism, Feminism, etc., of a political nature do ever create or generate their own political mythology, regardless of any supine protests to the contrary.
But, lest it be thought that political mythology lacks documentation, a listing can be rendered, for proper thematic coverage, in the following citations: Political Myth in Aristophanes: Another Form of Comic Satire? by Nikoletta Kanavou, Henry Tudor’s Political Myth, Political Myth: A Theoretical Introduction by Christopher Flood, Der Mythus des zwanzigsten Jahrhunderts by the Nazi Alfred Rosenberg, and, of course, Cassirer’s The Myth of the State.
Also, one could relatedly consult: A Philosophy of Political Myth by Chiara Bottici; The Politics of Myth: A Study of C. G. Jung, Mircea Eliade, and Joseph Campbell by Robert Ellwood; Gladstone: The Making of a Political Myth by D. A. Hamer; Roland Boer’s Political Myth: On the Use and Abuse of Biblical Themes, and a suitable article: “Political Mythologies of the Twentieth Century in the Perspective of Hermann Heller, Ernst Cassirer, and Karl Löwith,” by Jeffrey Andrew Barash, as found in the Bulletin du Centre de recherche français à Jérusalem.
In addition, the still provocative writings of Georges Sorel 7, manifesting his hubris, ought not to be that neglected as to the proper study of modern political myth. What should become indicatively apparent is how, century by century with the further absorption of nominalism in cognition, Rationalism exists as the corruptive parody of rationality, never a true or valid substitute for it.
By so many strong degrees, irrationality, irrationalism, illogicality, and clearly irrational thought in general do increasingly come, more and more, into the epistemological service of Godless Rationalism; this was during the existential course of the intellectual, cultural, and aesthetic progression of modernity, along with, of course, the Nietzschean will to power. It may yet fairly be asked, nevertheless, how so?
Modernity, with its ingrained pragmatism, positivism, materialism, secularism, and, ultimately, nihilism had pushed its aggressive ideology of Rationalism so far as to progressively encourage irrationalism and the distrust of mere human reason, which then reintroduced “higher” or more sophisticated superstitions into the world, such as, e. g., deconstructionism.
This was, again, the rather bastardized metaphysics that got somehow smuggled in through the somewhat ignominious back door, as the, thus, old or traditionalist metaphysics was then so rudely and crudely pushed out the front entrance. Along with, e. g. the irrational, Lutheran-Protestant theological denial of free will, that larger overall process was felicitously called, by that so much celebrated modern god-term, Progress. Interesting reading would revealingly include Robert A. Nisbet’s History of the Idea of Progress.
There had been, therefore, quite baleful and usually very malevolent consequences, suffered by real human beings, in this most unpleasant process celebrating modernity and its superstitions, myths, and its assorted and sundry efforts at modernist sorcery. One can benefit by reading such surely illuminating volumes as Jacob Leib Talmon’s The Origins of Totalitarian Democracy, Political Messianism – The Romantic Phase, Romanticism and Revolt, and his The Myth of the Nation and Vision of Revolution – The Origins of Ideological Polarization in the 20th Century.
Only a dead mind or a quite dedicated nominalist, a modernist supreme, could read such books and not come to the obvious conclusion that something is so radically wrong with the clearly evil premises of modernity and its defense. Furthermore, the many noted failures of modernity have not been ever truly corrected but, rather, have been definitely much more aggravated and excessively exacerbated by the main currents of most, not all, postmodernist thought.
Only an irrational misanthrope would cite World War I, World War II, nuclear weapons, and the 20th and 21st genocides as all simply unqualified successes of true progress and joyous enlightenment, of mankind’s categorical and praiseworthy advance.
The overt point being made here ought, therefore, to be absolutely crystal clear to any fairly cognizant and sensate mind, by citing a work by a past and renowned, enthusiastic champion of rationalism, materialism, secularism, pragmatism, and positivism: H. G. Wells, who wrote his pessimistic but highly self-indicative little volume sadly entitled, Mind at the End of Its Tether, with the “best” thoughts he could lamely come up with then, in 1945, at the age of 78.
Modernists do have much to answer for, but they never really do; they just, as is their want, casually step over the dead bodies and other assorted debris of carnage and calmly continue forward toward their next efforts at trying to irrationally construct the New Eden on earth, aka Utopia, almost always, once again, in the both mythical and magical name of some kind or other of idealized collectivism, of course. James Burnham, in his Suicide of the West, foresaw and predicted accurately the destruction and devastation that is simply today accepted as being a normal part of reality.
Learning really nothing that substantive and, moreover, ideologically, (read: superstitiously), forgetting whatever is inconvenient to their unreasonable purpose, to their vain pursuit of a terrene paradise on this large orb occupying space in the exosphere. In contrast, the so wildly fictional Baron von Munchausen sounds like a hardened realist making rational calculations of success. Chesterton, in the early 20th century, had presciently noticed how abnormality wished to replace normality as to the new moral, social, and cultural norms for progressive societies in the Western world.
In the myth-filled realm of modernity, one sees, as to an economic example, the quite fantastic irrationality of the applied thaumaturgy set behind all minimum wage laws truly adverse to all economic laws, history, empirical evidence, scholarship, and just plain reality itself qua basic commonsense, meaning in strong defiance of reason.
The, e. g., wild, blood-drenched 18th century French revolutionaries, willingly sending at least 500,000 victims to their needless slaughter, thought that they too were setting about creating a wondrous, brave new world of limitless liberty, fraternity, and, of course, equality. A world to be drained of hopes for holiness and the sanctification of peoples in the insane rush toward the nihilism created by the aggressive and sinful demand for a completely secularized Progress at all costs. What has been one of the logical and, thus, terrible consequences seen in today’s era?
A Clash of Two Rival Fundamentalisms: Secular-Humanist Ideology v. Islamic Ideology
Meanwhile, postmodern, PC, multiculturalist Europe, filled lavishly with such contemporary superstitions, is acting out its Death Wish by absurdly adopting a sociopolitical version of the “Battered Wife Syndrome” in dealing with the intolerant and contemptuous, so envious and spiteful, Muslim invaders. A most peculiar love-hate relationship has been established; neither side can really resist each other in this death grasp, as if a drowning man cannot resist trying to strangle the person attempting to save him.
Enamored of their ideologically-based myth and magic to a perceived suicidal degree of strange proficiency to behold, progressive Europeans are quite busy actually subsidizing, sponsoring, their own extermination aided greatly by an irrationalism, by PC multiculturalism, knowing no limits. Feminists, revealing the final decadence of their nihilistic ideology, refuse to denounce these Islamists who do brutalize and mutilate girls and women in the name of their Allah and the Koran.
Thus, they can’t easily see the forest because of the trees. Their known decadence and degeneracy, moral disintegration and decline, furthermore, axiomatically prevents them from ever surely perceiving evident matters reasonably and objectively. Their overtly PC pro-Islamic ideology, moreover, simply prevents them from seeing the actual nature of the Moslem enemies among them as a force intent on bringing enslavement and supremacy. Realistically speaking, since terrorism is sanctioned by Islam, it could not be otherwise as to the intentions of such radicals.
Though it is anti-PC to speak this obvious truth, Sharia, being the fundamental antithesis of Western law, as was so wisely noted, by no less an authority than Justice Robert Jackson, in his Law in the Middle East, will certainly ensure that slavery can never be truly eradicated from the Islamic world until Islam is, in turn, itself fully eradicated. Anyone who doubts this so logical assertion is, however, too naïve for words, for he is essentially ignorant of Islam as to its nature that integrally provokes aggression against any opposition.
An adopted irrational, talismanic mindset prevents them, the progressivists, from acknowledging the harsh reality that ought to be confronted; instead, the irrationality of their mythological and magical cognizance inherently blinds them to the overt truth of their fundamentally dangerous situation having, literally, many life-threatening dire consequences for the too often hubristic European peoples.
Post-Enlightenment, postmodern Europe has today left itself no other way out of this secular-humanist prison, turning now into an active death camp, which it has so very willingly created. As for America, its own greatly debauched political, intellectual, and cultural elites wish the people of this country to get Europeanized increasingly, in the very same way, and so accommodate, through a much similar suicidal appeasement, our very own imported Moslem invaders. It is a Death Wish, fueled by excessive affluence and its many known corruptive powers, and exercised on the part of the jaded and degraded elites in the entire Western world.8
Parenthetically, the too remarkable insanity of all this goes unnoticed by the bulk of the mass media, as it is, also, most integrally enthralled by contemporary magical and mythical notions, regarding various utopian ways of oddly perceiving the world and its doings. Appropriate reading, concerning this deadly demonic debacle, would include Alice in Wonderland, besides Jean Raspail’s highly prophetic novel of a Europe heavily drowning in worshipped irrationality: The Camp of the Saints.
The certainly amazing form of circular reasoning observed in existence, meaning the greatest superstition of them all, reinforces daily each and every ideological decision to just supinely capitulate to the Islamic subjugation and conquest; this is done, with all the extant irrationality that can be sufficiently mustered, in the vain hope that Utopia will, sooner or later, arrive and all peoples will then join hands and, thus, mindlessly sing a rousing chorus of kumbaya forever and ever.
One sees manifestly here that the genuine final end of the line for sincere Rationalism must, therefore, only be an unmitigated nihilism, an overtly Nietzschean invitation to look into the boundless dark abyss indicative of (meaningless) death.
After each and every terrorist bombing, moreover, this bizarre belief, embalmed in witless adherence to the perverse kinds of myth and magic generated necessarily by ideological superstitions and mystical notions, becomes even more ingrained and powerful, which is, admittedly, frightening to behold. How may this be noticed amidst the blatant insanity too often observed in the contemporary world?
One needs to critically see that the nihilistic decay of modernity definitely helped to give rise to ISIS. The vast majority of the Islamic State’s followers have a schizophrenic and radical regard for the Western world; they are not, in fact, the purportedly impoverished peasants and small-town slum children who have joined this revolt to supposedly escape poverty, as often as is falsely alleged, both so nauseatingly and absurdly.
Though these ISIS adherents have benefited from the material and technological plenty of the West and its many affiliated, assorted realities in the world, they still so rejected this tendered cornucopia because of its obvious spiritual poverty and blindly turned, instead, toward a reified yet highly retrogressive version of Islam paralleling, in many wars, the 6th century. It is, in its most peculiar way, a rather bizarre kind of vile parody of a weird version of the Society for Creative Anachronism, a steampunk variety no less, and this needs to be correctly recognized.
Important reading would surely include Dr. Peter Hammond’s Slavery, Terrorism and Islam: The Historical Roots and Contemporary Threat. Also, Robert Spencer’s many volumes, including: The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades), Inside Islam: A Guide for Catholics, Religion of Peace?: Why Christianity Is and Islam Isn’t, Stealth Jihad: How Radical Islam is Subverting America without Guns or Bombs, The Complete Infidel’s Guide to ISIS, and his The Complete Infidel’s Guide to the Koran.
One should also read: The Myth of Islamic Tolerance: How Islamic Law Treats Non-Muslims, a collection of 63 essays edited by Robert Spencer, covering the horrific history of non-Muslim populations during and after the bloody conquest of their lands by hate-filled Muslims.
They seek, thus, to so dramatically conjure into being a version of a lost (and now seemingly magical) world devoted to absolute and unquestioned Moslem supremacy and primacy, as is to be savagely done through ISIS and its bloody evil victory, while at the same time ironically utilizing, in full contradiction, the West’s technological and computer-driven culture to fight against the denounced Occident with its, of course, terribly filthy, (imperfect), and detestable infidels. They too do seek a Western-style perfectionism on earth, by whatever euphemism.
The latter consideration, actually, being quite a genuinely great tribute supremely indicating their overt Westernization, of course, which they, so blithely, seek not to acknowledge; this is because it would then fundamentally, in fact, refute and undermine their hypocritical denial of a (Western-style) angst and, thus, cognate existentialist frustrations. How may this be easily known?
They are, for the most part, highly educated, urbanized, middle-class plus, pampered young adults who have variously tasted of the delights of the West and yet their very radicalization, ironically, forces them to yet abhor the abundant lifestyles that they have obviously so greatly benefited from in their own lives; they are, therefore, living, breathing human contradictions of a mesmerizing modernist civilization, wallowing ever in its magical Godless notions, now rapidly heading toward its much deserved moral bankruptcy and, thus, so predictable dead end.
Their noted nihilism, Islamic radicalism, and surely evident, fanatical Death Cult attitudes show them the vile way through modernity into the postmodernity of a utopian order, by definition, which can never really exist, meaning their mythical ersatz caliphate, their own chosen never-never land in which to excitedly worship death. There is no room here for having a classical mindset in any way whatsoever, as with the progressivist Westerners worshipping the Open Society that they, in turn, hate as radicalized, envy-filled Moslems.
Modernist or postmodernist Europeans are, therefore, morally and intellectually disarmed because, though unrecognized by them as if by a mental block, they do share similar notions; and, familiarity breeds contempt, in that both sides profoundly disrespect the older classical mentality, the normative mindset, by feeling an extreme or militant aversion to it.
Thus, the too often proffered set idea that either modernists or postmodernists are really too sophisticated or advanced thinkers of the Brave New World is no more than a very bad joke; this is because their fetid brains are so consumed with way too many irrational elements of magical and mythical suppositions, liberal-mystical notions, and miscellaneous odd factoids; it is a militant, secular-progressivist superstition, held dogmatically, that any anti-modernist or anti-postmodernist thought could actually, really, ever be universally valid as being compelling objective truth.
Only a fellow fool, an ideological boob, takes any of those people seriously as being profound cognoscenti of quite a rare breed. Their denial of there being a metaphysical order, by their superstitious preferences for myth and magic, to a commonsense reality creates a form of pragmatic circular reasoning; this is by which they are then forever regressively trapped in an equally pragmatic maze of their own positivist, materialist, and secularist making, with no seeming way out of it.
Secular-humanism, though it is often denied vehemently, possesses the quality of a modernist religion; the high priests have among them many scientists, technocrats, and academicians; there do exist, in fact, Humanist Manifesto creeds, listing their dogmas of belief 9, that have been published; creedal violations of which end up meriting intellectualist scorn and contempt from the cognoscenti, illuminati, and their fellow adherents. Such failures of belief or, perhaps, the skeptical lack thereof are held as if equivalent to the omission or commission of sins.
Most of these people are, definitely, within the sad category of what the confirmed atheist Eric Hoffer had called the True Believers. They are, at least, as fanatical as true religious zealots dogmatically thinking that they really do have perfect doctrines demanding “rational” assent, though they may claim otherwise and, further, insist upon their reasonableness.
Think tanks, colleges, and universities act as their places of worship; these academic and many associated institutions are where the mystical worship of anti-free speech “speech codes” prohibitions of certain non-progressive ideas are, thus, enforced much more strictly than were indexes of prohibited books.
College and university campuses are then genuine PC hotbeds of Marxism, neo-Marxism, and rigid speech and thought control that do frighteningly parallel George Orwell’s 1984 and his Animal Farm. Equally, Environmentalism is, for instance, just another useful propaganda front for helping to spread Communism by whatever rewording of terms. In the way that Leftists are openly intolerant and bigoted against anti-progressive ideas, ISIS members are as overtly intolerant and bigoted against anti-Muslim ideas; in short, it takes one to know one.
What has happened to Western civilization and culture? The vast majority of Intellectuals, by whatever euphemism, and other such people, who willingly do construct fictive or synthetic worlds out of their own often fervid imaginations, had rebelled increasingly against the past’s traditional metaphysical order of reality, meaning, in essence, the belief in God. Their usually hidden goal, century by century, was the progressive, fundamental(ist), intolerant, bigoted, and, for most, absolute secularization without question of the civilization and its culture.
Both followers of ISIS and their anti-normative opponents are, in their own ways, dedicated fundamentalists; the former chose religion as to their preferred ideology, the latter prefers progressivism or collectivism as to their ideology. Unlike Liberalism, Conservatism, and, in fact, all the ideologies of modernity and postmodernity, the profound thinking of the nonideological traditionalist right, being that it is never enthralled by myth or magic, sees this reality so clearly enough.
Fanatical adherents of the Islamic State and their progressivist adversaries are, thus, all more like mirror images, ironically, than they would ever suspect or, certainly, comprehend. As two magnets of the same polarity naturally repel each other, the same goes for what is happening in Europe. How may this philosophical assertion be, however, much better understood?
Hobbes, for instance, could barely hide his militant atheism; Locke and Kant, through much neatly refined verbiage, were manifestly more successful.10 Through the cognitive, emotional (aka irrational) and other such powerful forces of modernity, the once traditional metaphysical order, and its sanctifying predilections, was gradually and, sometimes, through revolutions, quickly, meaning radically, replaced by the political order of reality as being ultimate in nature.
Further and further abstractionization and cognate alienation of man had, thus, logically continued through the eras, regarding this fundamentalist belief set against the Lord God Almighty.
By the mid-19th century, Herman Melville, e. g., easily saw the conflict and depicted it as Moby Dick; both he and his friend Nathaniel Hawthorne, as known through their correspondence, knew that the story was an allegory, filled with religious symbolism, in which the Great White Whale stood for God; and, Captain Ahab sought by killing the beast to do an act of atheism by vilely attacking God Himself. As ought to be appreciated, the rather quite startling substance of this novel, as to its so high metaphysical antagonism, makes, by definition, for great literature.
For as Ahab so revealingly says: “ ‘Tis the thing behind the mask I chiefly hate; the malignant thing that has plagued mankind since time began; the thing that maws and mutilates our race, not killing us outright but letting us live on, with half a heart and half a lung!” The ardent plea and hatred of militant atheism has, therefore, rarely been seen more clearly, as the history of the modern age’s modernity can attest in its baleful legacy to the Western world. But, what had happened to Western civilization?
In Europe, the offered universality and theocentrism, e. g., of the Roman Catholic Church, its openly doctrinal Christocentrism, was later replaced by an increasingly sectarian Protestantism, nationalism, modern imperialism, advancing secularism, and other modernist ideologies extant throughout the entire continent. One can, both readily and insightfully, get a true and fairly comprehensive sense of this reality by reading Millar’s Unpopular Essays in the Philosophy of History. It is evident how Protestantism helped further an increasing secularization of intellect, society, and culture.
Modernity with its noted, ever invasive anthropocentrism (aka atheism), the quite secularly functional and pragmatic point of view, reigned supremely triumphant at last, as obviously was seen in World Wars I & II, nuclear weapons, many genocides, and much else.
And yet, postmodernism in cognition, the neologism here of “ideologicocentricism,” thought that this was not really enough change or radicalization needed; ideological order now seeks to replace all the previous forms of mere political order, simple statism, or tyranny. The 20th century immanentist failures of Nazism, Communism, and Fascism, meaning efforts to finally achieve the apotheosis of the State among men as was desired by Hegel, to help establish Utopia on earth, taught the “lesson” to the postmodernists that the political order must now be replaced by a truly ideological one.
Past failures, producing tens upon tens of millions of dead bodies, need not ever stop Progress, for the Great White Whale must still be killed at all costs. Malcolm Muggeridge, for instance, had sagaciously perceived that 20th century civilization (or, what had passed for it), was fully different from all previous civilizations, because it so actually wished to assume that God does not exist. How may this critical asseveration be more insightfully understood?
Admittedly, this above and accurate rendition of history is not to be found in any textbooks, which are, typically, written either by nominalist-inspired intellectuals or those who wish to do obeisance to the intellectualist, radical-bourgeois point of view. Totalitarianism at the political level, seen in the cited mass movements of the 20th century, was still found to be not enough as to a both requisitely sufficient and proficient coercive power. More intensification was needed to perfect totalitarianism beyond any mere authoritarian efforts at mind control and population control.
People, now, must be so forced through all emotional, social, cultural, aesthetic, semantic, legislative, judicial, executive, and any other means to absolutely conform to the crescively pervasive dictates of the ideological order, as currently being all inclusive and, in addition, made to seem just completely normal. It’s a scary kind of crude Pavlovian behaviorism gone mad, abnormality is, thence, worshipped as being so acceptably normative, so truly PC, for the 21st century.
Thus, as an example, the ideological order will see to it that homosexuality and any other deviant behavior is not simply tolerated as in a mere political order; raw deviance is to be highly promoted, protected, and enforced, if necessary, against all those who may so oppose such “once” vile and aberrant behavior; sodomy of any kind or all kinds is to become ever officially institutionalized, established, as a set foundational and societal, cultural, and political mandate, a clear categorical imperative of progressive governmental policy and its related programs. The once normal or normative life must, therefore, be all legally and otherwise denounced as being totally abnormal, against all now universalized “human rights.”
Its evil enforcement is, therefore, to become irredeemably absolute. Sodomy practiced upon children and babies is to be made into a legally sanctified civil right, backed both substantially and substantively by the law and a PC society and culture, and dedicated to the liberal Open Society concept. Bestiality is to be legalized as well, for nothing must impede the corrupting dictates of the Open Society and its worship.
Parents who may wish to save or prevent their children from being sodomized will soon have to be arrested and very severely fined; if found to be recalcitrant in this regard, imprisonment, logically, then awaits them. The perfection of tyranny is now to be the highest goal pursued by the contemporary State due to its total ideologization, as is so quite routinely demanded by the Left.
The ever aggressive ideological order must, as noted, be supremely absolute to be effective and, moreover, made increasingly irresistible and not just on a yearly basis as to compulsions, which are to be multiplied and reinforced whenever and wherever required. Is such a future conceivable given the both current and ongoing radicalization and defilement of contemporary reality?
To tens of millions of people, not being PC is the equivalent to committing a mortal sin, as to its quite incredible magnitude and significance; for Catholics, even a single unrepented mortal sin denies the soul both beatitude and Heaven for eternity. The ever value-neutral Open Society, furthermore, demands obedience of its controlled subjects set well beyond what had been the mere severe dictates of a totalitarian political order or oppressive regime of power; the Good Society of normative values must be crushed; the Free Society of traditional-classical constitutional liberty must be fully suppressed.
There is to be, therefore, an inner reflexive consent desired by which every postmodern person then becomes an ideological robot attuned axiomatically to the needs of what is assumed to be an amoral order in postmodern society and its attendant decadent culture. People, ideally, are to force themselves to be PC all of the time and urge others on as well, for Rousseau “knew” that, e. g., men must be forced to be free.
There is to be no way out offered, for the secular-humanist, perfectionist quest for Utopia, which is always denying the effects of Original Sin, must thence logically end in Hell; first on earth, then in the hereafter, which will, posthumously, shock many, many hundreds of millions of people.
However, the only genuine solution to the endlessly multiplying ethical and moral dilemmas, paradoxes, and enigmas of either modernity or postmodernity remains, as ever, the Roman Catholic faith, when received, believed, and practiced in the true fullness of its orthodoxy. The truth shall make men free, not ideology.
Furthermore, Thomistic scholasticism, not just any variety of scholasticism, should be properly utilized to teach Roman Catholicism, religion and theology, to all inquiring minds seeking to be liberated from both modernist and postmodernist myth and magic. It is an enlightening and liberating experience and a normal sustainable way of life freely offered and properly consistent with Natural Law and right reason, with theocentrism and moral order.
Nothing less will do, nothing more is needed. Alternatively, it needs to be recognized that the continual and base confusing and confounding of proper and needed rationality with the surely absurd ideology of Rationalism offers only a dead end, with corpses resulting every time it is tried and so found wanting. Additionally, neither myth nor magic, as has been discussed in this article, can adequately fill the human spirit and fully answer life’s ultimate questions, especially when faced with the finality of death.
For as the wise G. K. Chesterton correctly put the matter, Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried. All of this, as could be guessed, is then certainly much more than getting well beyond mere myth or magic, besides so wisely rejecting postmodern, nominalist reprimitivization, rebarbarization, in its ugly entirety.
And, in brief, that so monumental difference says it all. Once again, what is found to be so urgently needed is the both intelligent and spiritual removal of the dark magic, through the demythologization of a much damaged temporal order, for its then requisite sacralization and sanctification in, by, and through Jesus Christ.
Athanasius contra mundum!
1. This was not really a small achievement on the part of the Catholic Church. By removing layer upon layer of mythological beliefs, century by century, from formerly primitive or near-primitive peoples during a civilizing process, there came into being the rational (not rationalist) mind of a Christian. A subject or citizen was able to better face the world objectively, in a way that could be rationally understood, without irrational or superstitious regard for any supernatural nature spirits, assorted demons, or many spectral phantasms that could paralyze a human mind and spirit.
2. There is a distinct Roman Catholic doctrine pertaining to the notion of free will. It is involved with religious and theological implications and ramifications that have created this assertion of distinctiveness. This means that it is not ever really the same as Protestant or other ideas pertaining to free will or the lack thereof, as was taught by Luther. How serious is any attempt, asinine as such, to refute free will?
The denial of free will is simultaneously the irresponsible and God-defiant denial of man’s own precious humanity, which did not occur to Luther because of his nominalist reductionism, and of man’s being created in the image of God, the, thus, created beingness of one who, also, possesses an immortal soul. Catholicism, therefore, has righteous contempt for Luther’s quite arrogant blasphemy because it is nothing else but.
3. Some readers may question the inclusion of the minimum wage. Yet, it is a superstitious fallacy and a species of mythical and magical thinking nonetheless. California Gov. Jerry Brown, in April 2016, publicly acknowledged that it, in fact, makes no economic sense, but he said he still supports it for moral reasons. The contention is that it is for helping poor and working class people but, in fact, does just the opposite.
Entry-level jobs are destroyed, potential employment gets replaced too often by dead-end welfare checks, small businesses can never start up in such a clearly dis-economic environment, businesses then feel forced to leave such states further eliminating employment opportunities, the cost of business increases as owners subject to such unfair laws must logically increase their prices, etc. The baleful chain reaction is limitless, the real and lasting harm done is endless. But, progressive politicians and their supporters learn nothing!
No rational economists, knowing the truly vast bulk of studies, books, documentation, facts, realities, etc. concerning its well-proven negative results, would now support having a minimum wage. Brown’s decision, therefore, makes about as much “rational” sense as performing an annual rain dance, in Sacramento, at government expense. Integral moral schizophrenia is, therefore, the ever true hallmark of the progressive mind. How may this be so easily known?
One small illustrative example: Paypal’s simultaneous expansion of services into Communist Cuba, in April of 2016, while it had protested vigorously against North Carolina’s religious freedom law in, of course, the supposed name of “human rights” with a boycott no less. Q. E. D.
A “baptized” version of the minimum wage is, unfortunately, the equivalent “just wage doctrine” of the Catholic Church, possessing the same difference, as to all such predictive ill effects.
4. How else can one explain the bizarre phenomena of progressivist Europeans actually paying Moslems to degrade, humiliate, and subdue them, while attempting to simultaneously deny that such savage, rude, and brutal behavior is abhorrent to plain commonsense, when any people have retained at least the rudiments of self-respect and rational cognizance?
This is common “life” in the bold age of poststructuralism, sensitivity training (aka thought police), the self-esteem (read: self-worship) movement, radical individualism, egalitarianism, the politics of meaning, race-class-gender analysis, New Age religions, racial or ethnic tribalism, resentment theory, and irrational denunciations of logocentrism, meaning the rabid anti-intellectualism of the Left!
5. The highly important Catholic doctrine of Original Sin is pregnant with overwhelming and heuristic axiological, epistemological, and, especially, ontological implications and ramifications galore. It explains, e. g., why collectivism, Utopianism, humanitarianism, altruism, perfectionism, etc. must always fail. Every attempt, filled with mankind’s so unctuous vanity, to create a supposed New Eden on earth must lead without any exception, sooner or later, to the then necessary death camps. Nihilism = death.
For instance, Rousseau’s integral fallacy of supposedly “forcing men to be free” produces only bloody horrors and terrors due to the ever imperfect (read: sinful) human condition.
6. It helps to understand that he is not some “humble” priest raised to the papacy; this man of darkness is a committed religious revolutionary dedicated to destroying Catholic orthodoxy by instituting a pseudo-Catholic version of the 18th century Enlightenment. He is a retrogressive thinker who surely wishes to incorporate both modernist and postmodernist myth and magic into Holy Mother Church, based upon his vile understanding of progressivism and Liberation Theology, who then deliberately blurs, darkens, and distorts the Light of Christ.
Pope Francis, therefore, needs to be honestly recognized as a man of true evil, for he is horribly assisting millions of souls to be condemned to Hell for all eternity. Thus, there is a debate of whether or not he is actually a Catholic; perhaps, he may be either an agnostic or simply a crypto-atheist.
7. See his Reflections on Violence as to violence being a very needed political weapon. He was a French philosopher and theorist of revolutionary syndicalism. His idea of the power of myth in people’s lives stimulated related thinking among both Marxists and Fascists. It is, together with his enthusiastic defense of violence, the chief intriguing contribution for which he is most often recollected.
8. It might have seemed too terribly superfluous to again note, within the main body of this article, the many true parallels with the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, as to its causes that look like today’s routine headlines; after a while, the basic rendition of the reasons for decadence gets tedious because, in truth, it has all been said before by many writers.
The ancient poet Decimus Junius Juvenalis or Juvenal was a Roman poet of the Silver Age of Latin literature, the last and truly most powerful of all the Roman satirical poets, who had excoriated homosexuality and its both vilely destructive effects and affects on upon society, culture, and the debased level of civilization itself.
9. The Humanist Manifesto I was, in fact, promulgated and written in 1933, the second Humanist Manifesto was written in 1973; the third one came out in 2003. Thus, humanism or the humanist-secularist religion demands respect as a serious proposition; it is definitely not meant as a joke, for it presents itself publicly as being creedal. And, there may be a rather superstitious fixation on the number 3, though it’s probably not Trinitarian in nature, one could, so reasonably, guess.
10. Leo Strauss, through his intense study and advocacy of what he called secret writing, was able to put together a convincing form of philosophical argumentation detecting how such writers as Kant were, in fact, crypto-atheists who merely pretended to be Christians or Christian enough to get their publications into print. Strauss offered and extrapolated upon such an idea in his book Persecution and the Art of Writing.
Kant surely knew that, in an age of censorship where much societal conformity could, also, be even more strenuously demanding than just a mere political propriety, he had to carefully write, so as not to openly provoke criticism of him as being an avowed atheist. It would have, otherwise, made his life difficult, at the least.
He realized full well that his bold attempt to more successfully and subtly propagate certain ideas tending really toward promoting strong disbelief would, however, be much better received, more easily condoned, and read by a wider public if he, at least, seemed, on the broad surface of appearances, to be a believer. Of course, the odd notion of such “esoteric writing” goes fully against the grain of all Liberalism in thought with its explicitness, which is, also, true for how the simplistic Anglo-Saxon Liberal mind rejects all notions of conspiracy theories as being from the hothouse brains of kooks and crackpots only.
Among many others, the historically, famously, and notably documented Bolshevik and Nazi conspiracies notwithstanding, of course. Also, e. g., David Horowitz and others, decades later, admitted that they were once active conspirators, in that none of the late 1960s and early 1970s antiwar riots were ever actually spontaneous affairs. And, again, conspiracies, e. g., in ancient Rome with its civil wars, were simply part of the very air being breathed.
Question: Could “enlightened” people be, therefore, mainly wrong also about esoteric writing, as they so evidently are about many conspiracies?
Hadley Arkes, Natural Rights and the Right to Choose.
____. Beyond the Constitution.
____. The Philosopher in the City.
____. First Things: An Inquiry into the First Principles of Morals and Justice.
____. The Return of George Sutherland: Restoring a Jurisprudence of Natural Rights.
____. Constitutional Illusions and Anchoring Truths: The Touchstone of the Natural Law.
Robert H. Bork, Slouching Towards Gomorrah: Modern Liberalism and American Decline.
M. E. Bradford, A Better Guide Than Reason: Federalists and Anti-Federalists.
____. Original Intentions: On the Making and Ratification of the United States Constitution.
____. The Reactionary Imperative: Essays Literary and Political.
Budziszewki, Nearest Coast of Darkness: A Vindication of the Politics of Virtues.
____. The Resurrection of Nature: Political Theory and Human Character.
____. The Revenge of Conscience: Politics and the Fall of Man.
____. True Tolerance: Liberalism and the Necessity of Judgment.
____. What We Can’t Not Know: A Guide.
____. Written on the Heart: The Case for Natural Law.
Frederick Copleston, S.J., A History of Philosophy (multivolume source).
Rauol E. Desvernine, Democratic Despotism.
Anthony Esolin, The Politically Incorrect Guide to Western Civilization.
Étienne Gilson, God and Philosophy.
____. From Aristotle to Darwin and Back Again: A Journey in Final Causality, Species and Evolution.
____. The Unity of Philosophical Experience.
____. The Spirit of Medieval Philosophy.
____. The History of Christian Philosophy in the Middle Ages.
____. Three Quests of Philosophy.
____. The Christian Philosophy of St. Thomas Aquinas.
____. Methodical Realism.
____. Thomist Realism and the Critique of Knowledge.
Kevin R. C. Gutzman, The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Constitution.
John H. Hallowell, The Decline of Liberalism as an Ideology.
____. Main Currents in Modern Political Thought.
____. The Moral Foundation of Democracy.
Russell Hittinger, The First Grace: Rediscovering The Natural Law In A Post-Christian World
James Kalb, The Tyranny of Liberalism: Understanding and Overcoming Administered Freedom, Inquisitorial Tolerance, and Equality by Command.
Willmoore Kendall, The Basic Symbols of the American Political Tradition.
____. The Conservative Affirmation.
____. Willmoore Kendall Contra Mundum.
Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn, Leftism Revisited: From De Sade and Marx to Hitler and Pol Pot.
____. Liberty or Equality.
Forrest McDonald, A Constitutional History of the United States.
____. Novus Ordo Seclorum: The Intellectual Origins of the Constitution
____. States’ Rights and the Union: Imperium in Imperio, 1776-1876.
____. E Pluribus Unum: The Formation of the American Republic, 1776-1790.
Alasdair MacIntyre, After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory.
____. Whose Justice? Which Rationality?
____. Three Rival Versions of Moral Enquiry.
____. The Tasks of Philosophy.
____. Ethics and Politics.
Fr. C. N. R. McCoy, On the Intelligibility of Political Philosophy.
____. The Structure of Political Thought.
E. B. F. Midgley, The Natural Law Tradition and the Theory of International Relations.
____. The Ideology of Max Weber.
Thomas Molnar, Return to Philosophy.
____. Archetypes of Thought.
____. The Pagan Temptation.
____. Politics and the State: the Catholic View.
____. God and The Knowledge of Reality.
Thomas P. Neill, The Rise and Decline of Liberalism.
____. Makers of the Modern Mind.
____. Religion and Culture.
Gerhart Niemeyer, The Communist Ideology, Between Nothingness and Paradise.
____. Aftersight and Foresight.
Michael Oakeshott, Rationalism in Politics and Other Essays.
____. On Human Conduct.
____. The Politics of Faith and the Politics of Scepticism.
____. Hobbes on Civil Association.
____. What Is History?
____. The Vocabulary of a Modern European State.
Josef Pieper, Abuse of Language Abuse of Power.
____. For the Love of Wisdom.
____. In Defense of Philosophy.
____. The Four Cardinal Virtues.
Paul A. Rahe’s Soft Despotism, Democracy’s Drift: Montesquieu, Rousseau, Tocqueville, and the Modern Prospect.
Heinrich A. Rommen, The State in Catholic Thought.
____. The Natural Law.
James V. Schall, S.J., Roman Catholic Political Philosophy.
____. Christianity and Politics.
____. The Politics of Heaven and Hell: Christian Themes from Classical, Medieval, and Modern Political Philosophy.
____. Reason, Revelation, and the Foundations of Political Philosophy.
____. At the Limits of Political Philosophy: From the “Brilliant Errors” to the Things of Uncommon Importance.
____. The Mind That Is Catholic: Philosophical and Political Essays.
Leo Strauss, Natural Right and History.
____. On Tyranny.
____. Persecution and the Art of Writing.
____. Liberalism, Ancient and Modern.
____. Thoughts on Machiavelli.
____. What Is Political Philosophy?
____. The City and Man.
____. The Political Philosophy of Hobbes.
J. L. Talmon, The Origins of Totalitarian Democracy.
____. The Myth of the Nation and the Vision of Revolution: The Origins of Ideological Polarisation in the Twentieth Century.
____. Political Messianism – the Romantic Phase.
Stephen Tonsor, Equality, Decadence, and Modernity.
Robert C. Tucker, The Marxian Revolution.
Frederick D. Wilhelmsen, Christianity and Political Philosophy.
____. Being and Knowing.
____. Man’s Knowledge of Reality.
Bertram D. Wolfe, Marxism.
Thomas E. Woods, Jr., The Politically Incorrect Guide to American History.
____. How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization.