Monday, September 22, 2014

You fairy, you company man: why men hate Christianity

Bonald has two good pieces on the Kasperite heresy:
Denigration of logic and concern for objective reality is key to Kasperite methodology.
...“Natural law = rule that matches my feelings.”  The author proceeds to throw up dust intended to relativize the clear position of scripture and Catholic dogma.  I’ll skip this, because I want to focus on what’s distinct to the Kasperite perspective.
...Given what has come before, we can now understand what Francis means by “ideas” and “realities”.  He is not making the obvious statement that all concepts are simplifications or the even more obvious statement that some ideas are wrong.  “Ideas” in this case means objective reality as grasped by the mind:  Catholic doctrine and natural law.  “Reality” means “people’s desires and feelings”.  “Dialogue” means we must adjust doctrine to gratify human sinfulness.
Men hate Christianity because Christianity has largely turned its back on them. Vatican II, which ran from 1962 to 1965, is the usual event cited for when the changes happened in the Catholic Church, but the feminization of Christianity had begun long before then. Christianity is a dogmatic religion. By definition, a dogmatic religion excludes some people. The unbaptized are excluded from receiving Holy Communion. Catholics who are not in a state of grace cannot receive Holy Communion. Christians who reject dogmas such as the Resurrection or the Trinity have excluded themselves from membership in the Church even if they don't have the integrity to formally leave her visible boundaries.

Men shouldn't accept Christianity because it will help them acquire money, power, or chicks. They should accept it because it's true. That's the only reason a man should believe anything. Because Christianity is true, it makes certain demands of us. Ideally, men's beliefs should be shaped by reality. They should not sit around and whine that reality doesn't conform to their beliefs. Christianity is the worship of a person who is Truth, who can neither deceive nor be deceived. Jesus Christ is our friend, our brother, but he is most of all our King. Pope Leo XIII said that Catholics are born for combat. It was once commonplace to refer to the visible Church on earth as the Church Militant. We were expected to wage spiritual warfare against our three great enemies: the world, the flesh, and the devil. The Church exhorted us to tame our bodily lusts, our weaknesses, our fallen nature. Disciplining our bodies helps to discipline our souls. Disciplined souls are more ready for closeness to God, our final end, our ultimate purpose and reason for being. As a great movie once said, whether you're a king or a little street sweeper, sooner or later you dance with the Reaper. Our earthly lives were seen as a preparation for our eternal destinies. Our choices were heaven or hell.

Then the Modernists came along.

Modernists saw religion less as a matter of objective truth about the nature of God and man as a subjective experience that effected man's feelings. It used to be that heretics claimed that the Church had got something wrong and they had gotten it right. They still cared about objective truth. Modernists don't outright say that the Church is wrong. They drain her pronouncements of all objective meaning. They fret over thinking up innovative ways to communicate with modern man. They seek not to convert the sinner, but to dialogue with him and assuage his feelings.

In other words, they want to turn religion into something for women and children only.

Catholicism is what I know best, but from everything I've heard it's ten times worse in other Christian communities. Christianity has become largely a service industry for women. In the average Catholic parish, women hold pretty much every position that doesn't explicitly require a priest. Even then, if you're hospitalized it's more likely than not that some little old lady will bring you the Eucharist instead of a priest. You can hear it in priest's homilies. Seldom do they speak about preparing the soul for receiving the Eucharist, or confession, or taking up one's cross, about discipline, about truth. We get soothing reassurances that Jesus loves us just the way we are. On Mother's Day we get endless paeans about the wondefulness of women. On Father's Day, if they mention it at all, men are often chastised for being poor husbands while their wives rub circles on their backs.

Above all, the focus is on our feelings and our subjective experiences. Theology rejects reason and logic, and Christianity itself is reduced to a noble sentimentality. Men pick up on this and they conclude not unreasonably, "Fuck this hippie bullshit." Everything Is Awesome Catholics avoid the cognitive dissonance by focusing exclusively on formal doctrine while ignoring what's being done in practice. Now it's true that we shouldn't allow the bad example of others to diminish our own faith, but it's much more difficult for your faith to thrive if you're immersed in lukewarmness and mediocrity. That's why the Desert Fathers fled the cities for hermitages in the wilderness. If you're relying solely on your own strength, you're in for a fall.

Progressives are always reacting to the world. The Church must change because the world is different. Doctrine must change because modern man isn't like medieval man. Worship must change because 21st century man doesn't know Latin. I have a counter-proposal: instead of following the world, we should be leading the world. We should be changing it, not allowing it to change us. If the Church is always going to be huffing and puffing five minutes behind the world, always struggling to catch up, then why bother? Be strong. Be daring. Be confident. For the love of God, be yourself again Holy Mother Church.

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