Thursday, 3 January 2013

Units for permanent resistance - groups not organizations


Continuing on my theme of real Christians (necessarily reactionary) and our strategy for permanent resistance

What is the size and nature of resisting groups?


I think we need to think in terms of C.S Lewis and JRR Tolkien's group the Inklings - that is a few like-minded and local Christian friends (various denominations), meeting regularly for mutual encouragement, to discern the truth.

Of course it would be good if the groups could be larger and more organized - something like the size of a college... But the essence of the situation is that this is no longer possible.

Indeed, I would find it impossible to gather a group even as large as the Inklings; and must survive for long stretches with just one or two confidants - and I am luckier than many to have them!


(Let not the best become the enemy of the good! We may imagine a vast Great Awakening, a reactionary revolution, the fourth Rome of Byzantium, a restoration of the Holy Roman Empire, a pure Puritan republic... or whatever. And these imaginations are necessary and good. But in the mean time we cannot muster enough people to support a magazine, a political party, a college! And every week brings a fresh defeat and another retreat. In such a context, a group of just six local and like-minded Christians would be a precious gift.)


But what would such groups actually do?

Well, that would depend on what the people involved actually did: the Inklings included writers with an historical interest, and so were responsible for Lord of the Rings and That Hideous Strength (for instance) - which are of immense value to modern real Christians.

But no doubt groups with other interest would do other things - that is a matter of local tactics, tailored to local specifics, and changing over time.

But the main benefit of such interactions, at least so I find, is to clarify what is going on and what should be one's attitude to it.

What ought to be done may not be possible to do, but it is valuable to know what is being aimed at - and what ought not to be done (what should be refused) may be a more attainable objective.


When things get tough, even a single trustworthy friend of like mind has been of great value to me - a value both spiritual and practical: and two such friends are more than twice as effective as one - and three, four or five would be even better.

Let not the best become the enemy of the good.

Small groups of trusted and like-minded friends.

And if not 'groups' - then at least pairs or trios.  



JP said...

Such a small group naturally exists - it is the family. The strategy of resistance should obviously include the strengthening of the family, to include home schooling of children, not least because PC seeks above all to destroy the family.

Bruce Charlton said...

@JP - I believe that marriage and the family are properly the backbone not just of society, but of Christianity.

The men of an extended family (a clan - fathers and sons, brothers, uncles and cousins) are probably the most cohesive of all political groupings.

But it is precisely the lack of these that is the problem with which we must contend. Hence the need for the kind of groups I describe: groups based around common convictions and common interests.

The Continental Op said...

Someone asked in an earlier post about tactics. It's good to establish strategy first, then develop tactics. We don't have any tactics, anyway, we've never done this before. We're all in the same boat. But we will learn.

Bruce Charlton said...

@COp - One thing I worry about is impatience among modern Christians; overreach, the craving for quick results, and a consequent tendency to get demoralized and succumb to despair. Instead, I think we need a more Old Testament style of faithful endurance.

There is almost a petulance among traditional Christians, at having lost hegemony. Maybe it would be better to imagine that we are in the position of a new religion, trying to grow from a small base in a hostile society.

Samson J. said...

Maybe it would be better to imagine that we are in the position of a new religion, trying to grow from a small base in a hostile society.

We aren't, though; that's the problem. I've thought many times that it might be best to try and think this way, but the problem is it isn't the case. Our situation is different in a few critical ways.

Instead, I think we need a more Old Testament style of faithful endurance.

I agree with this, and if the Old Testament (coupled with modern history - e.g. the Soviet Union) teaches us anything, it is the value of faithful endurance.

But, you know, this is the first post in a while that leaves a kind of sour taste in my mouth. It seems to border on a type of elitism that is dismissive and sells the Church short. Yes, even conservatives (of the "mainstream" variety) are not as reactionary as we would like, but there are still a lot of good people in our churches. When you say, "in the mean time we cannot muster enough people to support a magazine, a political party, a college" - I wonder whom you mean by "we". Surely your "we" is not *that* small?

Bruce Charlton said...

@SJ. This post is more of what Marshal McLuhan called a 'probe' - because I'm not sure, nobody knows, what it is best to do.

But another way of putting it, is that Christian Reactionaries (that is the 'we') must get support (support in faithful endurance) where they can, and not expect much support from other people - a handful may be all.

I don't actually think that there are a lot of good people, and and don't think 'we' are good. A lot of nice people, yes... but good? Turned towards God? Firm in faith?

But I am talking about England - no doubt conditions differ.

Bruce Charlton said...

@SJ - I am concerned to correct your misapprehension that I am advocating elitism and selling the church short.

In the first place, if you find a satisfactory church - them you should stick by it, so should anyone else.

But I am assuming that we are starting from a situation in which the church is not providing the kind of support we need.

As for elitism - maybe you imagine the Inklings as an elitist thing? That isn't how I see them - I see them as (in their core essence! - not in all respects) a tiny minority battling overwhelming odds

Samson said...

Well, I guess I don't agree - for myself, anyway, of course we must each make our own decisions - that my "we" includes *only* Christian reactionaries. My "we" includes anyone who is a genuine Christian follower.

On "good" people, and how many of them there are: of course "a lot" or "not many" are in the eye of the beholder. But you're right - I knew when I used the word "good" that I should not have used it; it is a troublesome, misleading word. I was hoping you would not point this out, but alas. I will only say this, in clarification: I know a lot of people (at my church, e.g.) who would not necessarily call themselves "reactionaries", but who I do believe are genuine Christian believers.

None of this is to dismiss the general point that becoming part of an Inkling-like group would be great for any of us.