It is our fate to be living in epic times; yet where the epic scale of evil is submerged beneath dreary lies and shallow incomprehension.
We all inhabit an evil global empire that demonstrates its evil on a daily basis; even going so far as to declare its intention to eliminate most of the people of the world. Its morality, aesthetic and idea of truth is inverted from that of common sense and all traditional religion.
There have never been so many or bigger public lies than in the recent past - and never have these lies been so uniformly endorsed and enforced by those with power, status, influence or fame.
The evil empire monitors and controls ever more and more of everyday life and (since early 2020) does this on a global scale.
It has already confined, separated, dehumanized much of the world population for much of the past year and a half - and is keen to do more - and forever.
On a daily basis its officials and media propagate resentment between the sexes, classes, races and political groups; fear of the birdemic and climate. The obvious aim is that each person be isolated, and terrified into desperate and propitiatory compliance. The apparent choice is 'enthusiastically' to join the world of evil - or else dwell alone, demonized, starved of society and necessities
So, from a Christian perspective, there can be no reasonable doubt of the evil nature and intention of the powers of this world; and that these powers are waging both material and spiritual war upon the mass of people.
These are Epic Times in which the war of evil against good has never been more extreme.
The set-up is similar to, but more extreme than, that of any fiction. There is an evil empire that dominates everywhere, and most (nearly-all?) of the masses are either brainwashed servants or terrorized collaborators with the evil agenda.
For anyone who opposes evil - this could hardly be more epic. Seldom can there have been more scope for genuine heroism.
Yet, of course. that is not how it seems...
Because the evil is so mundane and the people are so corrupted, that there is a gross and stunning failure to recognize evil as evil.
Or, this failure would be stunning if the failure to recognize evil were not a predictable and rational consequence of the materialistic quasi-utilitarian ideology that prevails everywhere.
Our experience of historical and fictional epic has led people to expect that an evil empire will focus upon physical aggression; with thugs torturing and violently killing. Clubs, knives, guns, gas and the like.
It has led people to expect that there are a minority of baddies and a large majority who know the nature and identity of their oppressors, and are secretly desperate to support the 'goody heroes' in their fight for 'freedom'.
But here and now; the evils imposed are mostly staggeringly dull and mundane; because evils are done by subtle sabotage; at arms length, by omission, and by proxies.
Modern mundane evil is not labelled as such, but expertly disguised, spun and buffed by public relations, advertising and the mass media.
Modern mundane evil is designed to be deniable - indeed it is embedded in an inverted moral system that is supported by the coordinated activities of international governance, the linked corporate bureaucracies, and the media.
So modern evil is 'officially' able to claim that it is Good - and that claim will be echoed by all major players in the public domain.
Thus these epic times, these times of open war between Good and evil powers - whose goodness and evil are ever more clearly distinguished and further apart - are mostly experienced as dull, dreary, boring. The genuine acts of heroism are invisible, forgotten or inverted.
But our task as Christians is see through the mundane materialistic epic to the exciting spiritual adventure beneath...
To see-through the dull, grey clouds of lies and deceptions; and reveal the heroic exemplars of Goodness: of virtue, beauty and truth-full-ness.
But we need to do this for ourselves, and by our-selves - because we will not (as we should) be helped by the run of poets and thinkers, artists and makers - because they have themselves (in their service to evil) become as dull, devious and mundane as the politicians, financiers, bureaucrats and journalists.
"the run of poets and thinkers, artists and makers - because they have themselves (in their service to evil) become as dull, devious and mundane as the politicians, financiers, bureaucrats and journalists." This is so true and you could add religious leaders to that list. Of course, these characters still see themselves as on the cutting edge of culture and imagination and right thinking but practically all of them have joined the other side and become as petty as those they fancy themselves superior to. The 200 hundred year onslaught on the spiritual has now reached the point at which most people genuinely cannot conceive of its reality and adopt at best a bemused tolerance of it but quickly sideline anyone who has the audacity to take it seriously.
@William - Indeed, and - as we have both noted before - among those who moderns are spiritual are the New Age types who do not recognize the reality of evil; but preach non-discernment, oneness, 'sweetness and light' - and always take the leftward side of mainstream leftism.
"But our task as Christians is see through the mundane materialistic epic to the exciting spiritual adventure beneath..."
Yes! For me this is the central concept of what you call Romantic Christianity. That life is an individualized quest, and that God has given us what we need to navigate the quest by heart-thinking. Easy to explain to a child, and to myself.
Fascinating. Life is certainly a mundane epic. In part what is striking is the prior essay of incoherence. In the epic, I see the incoherent in command, what some call borderline personalities or just plain crazies and their inability to see the first, second or third order consequences of their acts. It is astonishing.
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