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Give ‘Em That New Time Religion

Posted by Bob on October 2nd, 2009 under Coaching Session, History, Political Correctness

People in historic times did not live in the same universe we do. In fact, most of them did not live in the UNIVERSE.

This is a concept Lawrence Brown developed in his 1963 book “The Might of the West.” I read it at least once a year and each time I feel a hunger for more. This is REAL history, this is trying to look at the world from the point of the people who lived it, rather than our present “It all leads to Marx and social progress” theme of Political Correctness.

Today historians all write as if everybody in history was just trying to reach our present state of Enlightenment. Every established religion looks at the world this way. The old shaman and the old priest and the “new” Politically Correct professor have the same attitude, “All history has been a search for the Truth, it was searching for the Truth I, at long last, preach.”

It is as old as the hills and the same thing will be fashionable, in another form, when the hills wear down to flatlands.

  1. #1 by Dave on 10/02/2009 - 7:10 pm

    The sponsorship of Political Correctness is so full-fledged, long standing, and thoroughgoing, only the residents of bone orchards can remember when the prevailing views were different.

    Since is not true that there is one overarching “Establishment”, but many and very numerous “Establishments”, one must ask why the current orthodoxy became so popular.

    It is the dominance and pervasiveness of its SPONSORSHIP and the unquestioning belief in its PRAGMATISM that is tell tale to Political Correctness’s impasse with reality.

    This too, is nothing new in history.

    Perceptions matter. The accurate ones are fated to prevail.

  2. #2 by backbaygrouch4 on 10/08/2009 - 3:11 pm

    An interesting post from Takimag in the genral area of this piece.

    Pagans and Christiansby Matthew Roberts on October 07, 2009Although I am fond of Mark Hackard’s pieces on Russia, he seems to cast our pre-Christian ancestors into darker recesses of Hades than did Dante (who found much to value in his pagan predecessors). Although concepts like amor fati and a fallen world play important roles in understanding pagan religions, their abstract nature obscures the concreteness of the spiritual lives the pagans lived. Although heroic themes are central to epics, the daily lives of pagans would have been replete with more mundane deities and ancestral obligations. Their world was animated by a tapestry of spirits interwoven with their own family histories. For the 19th-century Breton Numa Denis Fustel de Coulanges, author of Ancient City, the pagan religions were largely ancestral where procreation played a central role in passing along these generational obligations. In short, familial and ancestral duties were everything – exemplified by Aeneas saving his family and ancestral gods from burning Troy. In this sense, pagan religion is not only about a set of ideas, but blood. Their gods were their ancestors, both in the immediate domain of gods like the lares and in the removed sphere of lineages traced back to major gods (e.g. Romans tracing their lines to Aeneas to Venus, or Germans tracing their lineages to the Vǫlsungs to Odin). And it is one’s duty not to let the family line, interwoven with the gods, die out. It’s no coincidence that maritare in Latin means both “to wed” and “to procreate.” Preserving the tribe meant everything.

    Regarding this debate on TakiMag, it’s noteworthy that everyone is in agreement about the pitiful state of Christianity today. The religion that gave us Chartres Cathedral and Bach today produces: strip-mall Christian bands singing classics like “Jesus Rocks”; a Jacobin pro-life movement denouncing abortion as racist and a violation of universal human rights; religious leaders from all political persuasions arguing that it’s our Christian duty to accept mass immigration from the Third World; and liturgies espousing the universal brotherhood of man.

    I suppose the real debate is an academic one: Has Christianity had these tendencies from the beginning (as argued by Alain de Benoist) or are they perversions of the Enlightenment (as argued by Thomas Fleming in the Morality of Everyday Life)? I tend to side with the latter, but wonder whether these transformations can be undone.

    Regardless, the future appears bleak; Richard is correct that Christianity’s real growth will be in the “global south,” and this future will not be Western in any meaningful sense of the word. I’m reminded of a recent canonization in Mexico where “dancers dressed in feathered Aztec costumes shook rattles and blew into conch shells” and priests “read from the Bible in Spanish and in Nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs”; or the recent phenomenon in Brazil of removing European traditions from Christianity and replacing them with African or Amerindian ones.

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