Thursday 30 November 2023

Negative critique is worthless; unless it comes from a position of self-awareness concerning assumptions and motivations.

I think we are all prone to critique, ridicule and dismiss the ideas of others by arguing purely negatively and without being clear of the assumptions from-which we are arguing. 

I've often done this myself, and indeed tend to fall-into it as a kind of Journalistic" default - to the point that I try to catch and halt this tendency, before it gets too established. 

Of course; one cannot always (e.g. in every blog post!) be re-stating one's assumptions; on the other hand:

1. It is obvious that most people do not even know what are their own assumptions; and

2. Even fewer people have subjected their own assumptions to the kind of critique that they so lavishly bestow upon other people. And

3. Even fewer people - having become aware of their own assumptions, and examined them critically - have found these assumptions to be solid to their own honest satisfaction over a prolonged self-critique*...

This is exactly why there is so much attacking of other people and their views in the modern world (including on the internet); and so little clarification of where that attack is coming from.

 When one's own views are unknown, incoherent, or feeble; and also if one's own person is very obviously flawed - then it makes sense to do everything possible to keep negative attention on the other chap and what the other chap is saying.  

But this is dishonest and incoherent. Therefore, unworthy of respect. 

*(This is, indeed, the entirety of the philosophical defense of modern mainstream ideology - the ideology shared by all people and institutions of wealth and power, all major participants in public discourse to the point that it does not even have a name for itself! I call it variously atheism-materialism-leftism-totalitarianism... but it-itself does not acknowledge any of these names, nor any other term, for what is By Far the most pervasive and enforced ideology in human history.)


So, I regard negative critique as so much blah blah - unless it is rooted in some, more or less explicitly known and acknowledged assumptions and motivations; some kind of evident self-awareness

This applies to critique emanating from what might be termed a Traditionalist Christian perspective, which can be almost any denomination or church - and indeed, almost the same negative critique may emanate from people/ institutions with very different assumptions - But this is not a strength!

After all, we get essentially the same "progressive" negative-critique of Christianity; coming-in from multi-national organizations such as the UN; from all Western Nations, and all the multi-national corporations and social institutions and the mass media - The Establishment. 

Negative critique is, mostly, merely negatively-motivated and ignorant-of-self; and even when it comes from multiple directions, it remains worthless. 

To be worth considering; negative critique must be in self-awareness of a coherent alternative and positive understanding. 

(Recalling that a double-negative is not a positive.) 

In short: we ought to demand (of ourselves, as well as others) If Not, Then What? 

Wednesday 29 November 2023

Christians (and, even more so, Christian Churches) need a clean break from doing worldly good

I would say that there are no Christian duties in this world relating to matters such as feeding the poor, promoting peace, preserving the earth - and suchlike social work.

This applies even when such 'charitable' activity is genuine, as it usually is not: when the poor being fed really are poor; when genuine peace is being promoted rather than, in fact, war supported; when it is nature genuinely is being protected, rather than than funding multinational fake-sustainable technologies, etc.

I mean that Christians ought to stop trying to help people physically, materially; to cease aiming at a happier and healthier world; to give-up on plans to diminish here-and-now human suffering caused by social problems and injustices. 

We have reached a situation from which Christianity must detach itself entirely from all such worldly generic duties, projects etc. - because these will be used against Christianity by Antichrist powers, and will always be expanded to crowd-out the genuine spiritual and next-wordly orientated duties. 

This-world and the here-and-now will always - and esepcially to the typical modern mind - seem primary, urgent and imperative; compared with the easy way that next-word and eternal requirements can be delayed, postponed, and made secondary. 

From where we now are, with the priorities and motivations and pressures that we now have; Christians should not acknowledge that any worldly actions are specifically Christian and mandatory to Christians. 

Of course, we will all continue personally to do specific acts as a matter of our personal love, sense of duty etc - but these cannot be allowed to be imperative as abstract generalizations

Churches need to do the same; and ought to focus primarily on whatever they regard as spiritual imperatives; or else we will continually repeat the 2020 situation in which the major churches all ceased to offer their spiritual services, while continuing their social services. 

As one representative example:

In April of 2020 during the birdemic lockdowns; The Church of England's churches were allowed (by the Bishops' instructions!) to open and be used for use as food banks and "peck" centres, while all sacramental activity in the same buildings was forbidden. Analogous actions were taken by all major "Christian" churches - revealing their true priorities were almost exclusively material, expedient, and totalitarian-compatible. 

The only way out and forward from burial beneath the vast complex of wrong motivations and false priorities and confused intentions that led to such appalling practices (in so many churches): is a clean break.

Only from a Ground Zero position of complete spiritual freedom from the currently suffocating network of worldly-entanglements and social-responsibilities; can properly Christian motivations be rediscovered and renewed. 

Only after we have solidly established the priority of the spiritual, may we then choose to rebuild a selective and effective concern with the material. 

(Adapted from a comment on Francis Berger's blog.) 

Tuesday 28 November 2023

Milking Newcastle - A latter-day Drones Club stunt


Assuming you enjoy this kind of undergraduate humour (as I do); I recommend this as a droll and well-constructed stunt video; heavily featuring one of my local supermarkets and the streets near where I live. 

It starts pretty well, but gets better as it goes on - and you need keep watching until the very last shot.

Analyzing "what women do" is... what *women* do: Hospital Society signs of maladaptive mutation accumulation?

In the weird online world, the masculine reaction against feminism and feminization, has often taken the form of men analyzing what women do (in order, supposedly, for men to be able better to understand and manipulate women). 

So, men who purport to desire to re-establish patriarchy, are expending their time and efforts in discussing the opposite sex.

And yet... this kind of thing is exactly what women do!

Back in the day "when men were men", men would never dream of getting together to analyze women - they were just not interested in such gossip. 

Men, instead, wanted to talk about things that interested them - work, sports, politics, theology... 

That was even the case just 20-plus years ago, when Robin Dunbar was researching his book "Grooming, gossip, and the evolution of language". In his studies, eavesdropping on single sex groups chatting; men talked about their interests; while women talked about social stuff: mostly about... men*.

There was, indeed, a whole evolutionary rationale for this difference in subject matter (to which I made a small contribution). 

Indirectly, the biological evidence was that such different interests were broadly adaptive. That is: such differences led to enhanced reproductive success throughout past evolutionary history. 

In traditional societies, it was a better reproductive strategy (overall, on average) for men to focus their social interactions on 'the world', and women to focus on people - especially men. 

Therefore, I would regard men analyzing women as a Hospital Society phenomenon, consistent with de-differentiation (loss of sexual differentiation) and maladaptation (loss of social and sexual adaptations) - which are plausibly caused by mutation accumulation. 

Of course, this does not mean that it is wrong for groups of men to want to analyze women in their online gossip (or IRL), esepcially considering that The West 2023 is not our "environment of evolutionary adaptedness"...

Just that such behaviour is rather... effeminate!

Thus paradoxically; the modern pro-masculine reaction is in this, as in other respects, un-masculine. 

*Briefly to summarize and caricature: men spontaneously talk about men, and so do women.

Monday 27 November 2023

In case it isn't clear - I became a Christian for the wrong reasons... mostly

I've said this several times in several places over the past 10-plus years on this blog; but maybe it deserves stating on it own... When I converted to Christianity, when I became a Christian, it was for the wrong reasons... mostly. 

My reasons for believing in first God, and then Jesus Christ, were - mostly, but not entirely- social and civilizational. This was because I had been brought to the point of conversion by the societal decline of England and The West generally. 

I realized that my civilization had become at first weak, then self-loathing; because we had deleted God personally and from public discourse; and in doing so deleted all possibility of purpose and meaning in life. 

Having believed in God (i.e. becoming a theist) I then became a Christian; believing that Christianity was the true-est of all the religions I knew. But I was unsure of the right denomination to join. 

What I was looking for, then, was 'civilizational-level' changes such as purpose, meaning and the basis for social cohesion in support of the transcendental values: truth, beauty and virtue. 

I then embarked on exploring, trying, a variety of denominations; even while I could see them collapsing in real time, almost in front of my eyes... Or more likely I gradually saw that the Western churches shared the weakness and indeed self-hatred of the civilization in general. 

I sought holiness; but found only legalism and a hard kind of strictness. 

From here-and-now, looking back on my recent life; it seems obvious that I was - substantially, albeit not fully - regarding Christianity and its churches as a means to a materialistic end: the awakening and regeneration of The West in general, England in particular. 

I never regarded this as an optimistic desire, indeed it never seemed probable that it would actually happen; but I saw a Christian revival as the only legitimate hope. 

But then I began to realize that my hope for a revival of traditional, old-time religion and strong churches was not just futile (in the sense that the opposite was happening), but that it would not be the answer even if it did happen. 

In other words that my hope - even if fulfilled - was not legitimate. 

I began to realize that Christianity had departed the churches - and they had become mere shells of institutions; in the same way as schools, hospitals, the police, law courts and military were just shells - which is that they retained forms and rules but without the motivating spirit. 

Insofar as there was still a motivating Christian spirit in the churches, it came from low down the hierarchy, it was dwindling; and it was ignored or persecuted (i.e. a situation exactly analogous to what I had observed in science and medicine a decade earlier).  

That is where I currently am. I now believe that I became a Christian for many wrong reasons to do with what I hoped that - in principle - Christianity, or else one or more of the Christian churches, could do for Western Civilization. 

I first realized that this could not happen, because the churches had institutionally lost their core spiritual motivations; and then I realized that even if the churches had remained uncorrupt, none of the earlier institutional forms of Christianity were capable (even theoretically) of addressing the major spiritual necessities of the West here-and-now. 

Liberalism had failed, but traditionalism could not work - even if it appeared to revive (which it didn't).


Another way of describing the trajectory, it that it took me quite a while to get clear about what Christianity really is (and always was). After all, across the centuries, Christianity has been and has included many, many things - even if we confine attention to a single denomination. 

At the most basic level, there has been (and is) tremendous ambiguity, unclarity, confusion and contradiction about what Jesus actually did. What, in other words, salvation actually means. 

This, of itself, was something that took a great deal of sorting out; and indeed it could not be sorted-out until I had re-examined several assumptions that I had absorbed without sufficient clarity or evaluation.

I do not think I really understood this - at least not enough to be clear enough to be able to defend it and advocate it as an individual - until my long and focused reading of the Fourth Gospel

This eventually (a decade after I became a Christian) made me see that the simple and true essence of Christianity had been obscured by the High Volume of secondary, and erroneous, doctrine and theology that (apparently) began accumulating from very soon after Jesus's resurrection. 

 It now seems to me that the reason why the Christian churches are-not, cannot, and should-not be the basis for a Christian revival; is that none of them have a clear and simple grasp of the core and essence of Christianity. 

This did not much matter in the past, in that the whole package did contain the truth (along with a lot of other stuff) - and because people accepted the whole package, and because society as a whole was not actively evil.  

Now we have a world in which everybody picks and chooses in their religions (even/ especially when they deny this!); when the world as a whole is actively evil; and therefore where Christians absolutely need to be clear about what it is that we believe and why.  

Nobody is going to tell us what we need to know; so we must each work it out for himself, and take responsibility for what he concludes. 

We each need to discover for ourselves what it really is to be a Christian, and to choose that Christianity: choose for the right reason/s. 

Anything else is not going to last, as the world darkens. 

But the right choice will last, and will strengthen - whatever happens to the world. 

How are things going, on the whole?

A couple of observations... 

In geopolitics, it is clear that the Western world is increasingly dominated in its major policies by agents of Sorathic destruction. They have set-up the global situation such that a full-on third world war is little more than a hairsbreadth away. 

On the flip-side: at the time of writing it has not happened. While the world has been poised and teetering ever closer to the edge of a precipice for the past 21 months or so - the nations have not yet thrown themselves off it (despite quite extraordinary provocations). 

This must (I think) mean that there are powerful agents who do not want all-in world war. 

What I am unsure about is whether these agents of 'restraint' are positively motivated by Good in any shape or form; or whether they merely favour the less violent evil of international totalitarianism - with its omni-surveillance and complete mind-control; and that they recognize that achieving this goal would be disrupted by major wars, and so are holding-back the destruction merchants from irreversible escalation. 

Another possibility is that plans of any kind are constantly being subverted by the selfish short-termism of those tasked with their implementation. e.g. instead of following the strategy of making war, the agents are tempted and distracted into making money.  

Still, what we are seeing is at least consistent-with the operation of covert Good motivations that (to an extent) counteract the much-more-obvious and explicit evil for the major leadership class. 

Further: When it comes to individuals, my impression (and that is all it can be) is that "the side of Good" continues to lose people

As The System continues to bring forward more and more Litmus Test issues - it seems that each new wave of challenges is 'failed' by a significant proportion of those Christians who had previously been stalwart*. 

Indeed, claims of an exclusive, church-based Christianity has now itself become a Litmus Test. To believe that Christianity must be institutional - is to fall into the hands of totalitarianism; since They now control the entire institutional framework of The West. 

For instance; whereas I hoped that the post-2020 situation might lead to an alliance of serious Christians of all denominations (and none); this has not happened. 

Way too many Christians still expend far too much energy denigrating other types of Christian, and denying (what they call "proving") that those outwith their chosen-church/ denomination are Christians at all. 

Religious definitions and rules have often become more strict, literal and communally-defined and -enforced; as a way of trying to prevent liberalizing slippage. Thus these stalwart church-Christians become focused on institutional survival and thriving in an increasingly hostile environment, instead of engaging in the spiritual war.    

Those who respond to the triumphant evil of this-world by putting all their faith into obedience to any this-world institution (including any church) have become captives to this-world; and have made an advance vow to follow this-world where it may lead, insofar as this-world control the institution. 

In effect; each self-identified Christian church asserts a formula for maintaining its faithfulness to God's wishes. But, because the church is an institution that exists at the social level, the formula takes some publicly observable, publicly enforceable form. And that is how The System is able to penetrate and corrupts all institutions. 

Only our consciousness and chosen personal relationships stand outside The System; all institutions are inside it.

There is no doubt that the modern world, especially in The West, is a harsh examination; and there is no formula for success - because formulae are exactly the mechanism by which corruption is operative

*This is a problem of any essentially defensive strategy. If it succeeds then things stay the same, if it loses then they get worse. People may default from defence, but defence can never be victorious. On the other hand, any positive attitude that depends on institutions, any materially-positive strategy, will sooner or later be corrupted by The System. The answer is to be individually and spiritually positive - and to find a way of doing this that does not ultimately depend on other people

Sunday 26 November 2023

Order or Chaos - or the Third Way: How the options of Life seem to the typical modern (perpetual-) adolescent?

I suspect that, in very general terms, the modern materialist mainstream person - whose attitudes are (unless they are very young) essentially adolescent - sees life as a choice (in practice always a compromise) between the possibilities of order and chaos. 

Order and chaos are given institutional form in bureaucracy versus the mass media; realism idealism; ideology instinct; optimal outcomes for society over the longer-term "myself" in the short-term; or globalist totalitarianism versus sexual (and other) gratifications unrestrained.

There is some basis of 'truth' - and indeed Good - in both of these extremes; which is why they have appeal and sufficient surface plausibility to be a Life Goal. 

Yet, as goals; both extremes are alike impossible to implement; and lead to misery when attempted; while any compromise, while more sustainable, is doubly unsatisfying - unsatisfying on both sides - in both directions.    

I would have thought it obvious that neither of these options, nor any combination or middle way between them, is actually a Good Life; but the problem is that these are implicitly regarded as the only possible options - which is why the "order v chaos" dichotomy appears in so many guises, and so many places, in modern society.

Clearly we must have a Third Way, which is hierarchically above both order and chaos (or their manifestations) - and this Third Way is the path following Jesus Christ and leading into resurrected eternal life in Heaven. It is a path by which love and creativity in mortal life is carried forward to divine life in a divine society.

The Third Way is what enables someone to look above and beyond the merely temporary satisfactions and compromises of this mortal life; but which also enables the utmost value to derive from the choices and actions (including thoughts) of this mortal life. 

However the existence of this Third Way is outside the allowed-realities of materialism - the Third is, in short, a spiritual way, and therefore excluded by assumption from all the discourses of modernity. 

This means that it is very difficult, and in the short term often impossible, to describe and offer the Third option as a realistic, here-and-now-and-forever path to a typically materialist adolescent-minded modern person. 

Modern people simple won't believe the Third Way is possible, and cannot therefore get into a position of choosing it. 

I suppose that this is why the modern world is what it is, and going where it is going. Having refused even to acknowledged the possibility and reality of the Third Way; The West is following-out the consequences of this rejection to its bitter end.

Those who choose order and totalitarianism are seeing their plans sabotaged by those whose allegiance is to chaos and hedonism; while, in order to survive and have power, the hedonists are required to sustain a miserable and anti-life system of totalitarianism - while the would-be moderates are buffeted to-and-fro, and their lives wrecked by the oscillations and clashes of the extremes*.

Having rejected outright the chance to learn-from and choose-between Life experiences of mortality; our civilization has chosen, and is getting, some very tough, very harsh lessons regarding the inevitable misery and meaninglessness of a life of materialism.

Both as individuals, and perhaps collectively, Modern Men are being confronted by the fact that a life without purpose or meaning is a mere existence - and for most people, most of the time, such an existence is intolerable to contemplate - and can be dealt with only by refusing to contemplate it - by self-impairment with distraction, drugs, or whatever effectively prevents thought. 

*Note. The characteristic mainstream modern intellectual is (whatever his supposed function) "some kind of manager" - and the characteristic mindset of such persons is precisely to oscillate between a rigidly bureaucratic, servile-to-superiors/ arrogant-to-subordinates, anti-individual, anti-human professional life; and an ideology of extreme leftist-radicalism rooted in a kind of deification of some individuals (who 'represent' and are conceptualized in terms of oppressed groups). The oscillation is often manifested as an individual - with a persona of obedient officialdom at work; but with transgressive sex, alcohol and drug intoxication outside of work. Another oscillation is when there are unprincipled exceptions to bureaucratic rules and laws granted to favoured persons; alternating with progressively ever-increasing surveillance and control of individuals and subordination of 'private' behaviours to bureaucratic imperatives.   

Saturday 25 November 2023

The spiritual problem of traditional "high volume" (H-V) religion - and what should replace it

Almost all traditional religion was extremely "high-volume". By this I mean that there was an enormous amount of stuff that the 'faithful' adherent was supposed to know and do...

Rituals to memorize; books to read, learn, and be able to expound; a yearly round of festivals; parable, stories, proverbs; songs; codes of dress and wearing of symbols; multiple social obligations and privileges... 

The list is literally endless, because no matter how much you have done, there is always more that you could - and probably should - be doing.  

High-volume ("H-V") religion was therefore the norm. It is what traditional religions wanted from their adherents, it is what their adherents wanted from their religions... 

Traditionally, adherents wanted a whole world of religion, as and when they ask for it. They wanted a Big religion that always has something to say, and never runs out of things to do. 

And the religious institutions and authorities want the same - and this synergy led to the power of longevity of Great Religions of the past. 

However; the problem with high-volume religion is that it is inevitably passive - passive overall and on average. 

HV- R is inevitably orientated (ultimately) towards obedience - and that obedience must necessarily mostly be uncomprehending

The adherent, even the priest; is required to believe everything, do everything including the mass-majority of what he does not understand - and nobody understands everything. 

This uncomprehending passivity is inevitable with H-V religion and therefore obedience is the most highly valued among all attributes; insisted upon by the religious regulatory practices.

Because in practice human ability and motivation cannot absorb masses of stuff, and learn elaborate practices - while also evaluating that stuff and discerning which is valid and necessary, and determining what is core and what peripheral. 

When a religion has become really high-volume (and when that volume is continually increasing) there is never sufficient time for checking whether we have actually understood what we have absorbed. 

Never enough time to cross check the consistency of all the many things we have been told. Inadequate time to follow-through to the implications and outcomes of what we have been told. 

So, in practice, H-V religion is always - and remains - for each and every adherent, a largely undigested mass

An undigested mass that must be obeyed. 

High-volume religion is intrinsically a case of all... or-nothing. 

Embrace and live-by the whole lot, or else you are not "one of us". 

Passive uncomprehending obedience - or heresy. 

The problem with this kind of high-volume/ passive religion is twofold: 

1. H-V R no longer works

2. H-V R is no longer what is needed. 

1. H-V Religion does not work, especially in The Modern West, because it is not wanted anymore - it has been rejected en masse and increasingly over several generations... 

Droves have left the churches; and of those who have not (yet) left, most implicitly reject whatever of their religion that conflicts with mainstream, materialistic secular-left totalitarian ideology. 

Religion has become a lifestyle choice, a social convenience or obligation.  

2. High-volume religion is no longer what is needed (and this is the deep reason why it does not work) because at this point in our spiritual developmental history it is (I believe) God's desire that Man's religion becomes something that he comprehends, chooses, and inwardly endorses.

By my understanding; in a totalitarian world of universal institution (including church) corruption; Men are now called-upon to be less passively obedient to institutions, including church institutions (which are, anyway, all net-corrupted); and instead required to take individual responsibility for their religion. 

If it is to be truly, spiritually, distinct from the mainstream materialism; Religion must become personal, inwardly-motivated, and active. 

This means that a Man's religion Must Be understood

In conclusion; H-V religion is inappropriate and ineffective and obsolete. 

What replaces it needs to be a low-volume (L-V) religion; in which all aspects have been individually reflected-upon with discernment directed towards understanding their validity, coherence, importance. 

All aspects of L-V religion can be, and need to be, recognized as a personal choice; and then those personal choices can be known as such. 

Only when we have a depth of comprehension of our religion, and have actively endorsed them; we can resist the relentless attacks on our assumptions for the mainstream of our society (including the attacks from the institutional churches). 

Only a low-volume religion has the possibility of functioning strongly and effectively on a personal basis.

H-V religion is the past; L-V religion, a potentially valid future


Actually-being-implemented "AI" is being introduced as an intended tool for mass thought control... Obviously!

Any Artificial Intelligence ("AI") which is not merely hypothetical and concerned with possibilities - and that is actually being implemented in Western Society on any significant scale - should be regarded as the intentional product of the ruling totalitarian Establishment in one of its manifestations. 

AI is - from the point-of-view of those in the Establishment who have funded, promoted, and spread it - a tool. 

AI as a phenomenon therefore needs to be recognized as a totalitarian Establishment tool for implementing Their aims; a means to some end

The question is: What end?

Therefore we ought to ask ourselves of AI in general, and specific instances: 

What is AI technology intended to do to the humans who use it? 

How is AI intended to affect Man's thinking, emotions, reasoning, understanding?

And (in total, over time): What is frequent, pervasive, mandatory human interaction with AI intended to do to Men's overall assumptions concerning the nature of reality.

Actually-used AI is not a matter of what we personally think it might be useful for; the reason we have it, the reason it is being puffed and pushed, the reason it is being implemented with no serious testing, no fair comparison, no objective checking of outcomes is intentional: there is will behind this vast and coordinated pro-AI activity. 

The reason for all this, is that from the perspective of Those with effective power, wealth, fame, status - AI has a job to do on "the masses" - a job to do on those human beings that are subjected-to omni-surveillance and micro-control. 

Meanwhile, from the POV of the masses - AI is being evaluated merely piecemeal, as a possible basis of short-term and personal convenience or amusement; or as a possible threat/ opportunity to immediate employment and wages. 

With AI we therefore have on one side a top-down system of (intended) mass thought control motivated by Ahrimanic evil; and on the other side... well, merely frivolous hedonism and desperate careerism.  

Friday 24 November 2023

Is AI (Artificial Intelligence) another Litmus Test issue?

I have previously described what I regard as the major Litmus Test issues for discerning which side a person has chosen in the spiritual war of the world (i.e. the sides for- and against-divine creation) - things like climate change, feminism, the birdemic/ peck, antiracism, and hostility to the autonomous existence of the Fire Nation.

I wonder whether a positive attitude towards AI (Artificial Intelligence) is another of these Litmus Tests? I am inclined to think so. 

Others might suggest that AI is merely neutral in its values, and what matters is the specific application - and, to some extent this is bound to be true: it is trivially correct that there are always exceptions to even the most valid of generalizations. 

There is also the confusion about "what AI means" - because the term has been around for many decades; and probably some usages that were commoner in the past may be less discerning as to spiritual attitudes. 

But, like all the Litmus Tests: What matters in 2023 is how that term is used in 2023. 

And the biggest evidence concerning the spiritual valence of any term in 2023, is the agenda to which the term is attached - and who is pushing that agenda.  

Thus, while some theoretical usages of "racism" are indeed sinful for Christians; in actual 2023 practical usage - "racism" is not any kind of a sin.  

By this criterion it is completely obvious that - whatever theories and exceptions we might imagine or manufacture - actually-happening AI is attached to an agenda that is being pushed by the global totalitarians. 

And that is all we really need to know. 

Because even if we personally have theories about potential benefits of AI, and even if we cannot understand or guess the nature of the harm that AI will actually be used to do -- we can nonetheless be sure that AI as it actually gets implemented, will be used on the side of Satan and against God. 

The insufficiency of Man's mortal life - even in paradise. Reflections on death from reading JRR Tolkien's The Fall of Numenor (edited by Brian Sibley, 2022)

JRR Tolkien's prophetic and historical legend of the Downfall of Numenor (his Atlantis) has increasing relevance with every passing year; as our own world seems to replicate so many of its sins. Last year's The Fall of Numenor volume is a valuable collection and arrangement of Tolkien's major Numenor material - a "one-stop shop" for all-things-Numenorean! It has provoked in me yet-another cycle of reflections and insights - especially on Tolkien's core theme of Death, and what (if anything) comes after.  

Thursday 23 November 2023

Jesus Christ and the Second Creation - already fully-available, utterly simple; but next-worldly

I'm beginning to think that a proper understanding of the Second Creation, made by the work of Jesus Christ, may be the key to what we most need to understand. 

There has, at least since the Apostle Paul, been a variety of more-or-less complex ideas related to a Second Creation made possible by Jesus; but my sense is that these were all - more or less - this-worldly. All tried to express the Second Creation in terms of possibilities (or duties) for Christians here on earth, in this mortal life. 

There was (for example) the promise or hope that after Jesus' resurrection, "from now" all Christians could participate in the Second Creation in some real sense. That potentially human society and the world itself might be transformed into a Heaven on Earth - either incrementally (via the City of God), or at the Second Coming. 

But what I am suggesting about the reality of the Second Creation is neither complex nor this-worldly; but utterly simple, and next-worldly

What I am saying is that the Second Creation is already (and from the time of Jesus) fully-in-existence, that it comes after death and resurrection, and that it is Heaven. 

In different words: Jesus made Heaven, and Heaven is the Second Creation; and all who desire it may follow Jesus to the Second Creation.

But -- this can only happen after death, because Heaven is the realm of the resurrected: the immortally re-incarnated.  

Easy to say and to want, but impossible to do fully or consistently

Easy to say and to want, but impossible to do fully or consistently...

That structure implies to so-much of Life - we cannot actually do what we genuinely want most to do. 

Except things are even worse! Because it isn't really even "easy to say" what is true, good and virtuous - even that usually takes a lot of discovering. So much so; that when we have discovered The Good we are prone to think that our work is done - yet, really, it has only just begun and never shall be completed. 

Such is the nature of this mortal life - nothing is perfect, nothing lasts... But we have enough of what is Best for us to know that we want more, and forever.   

At present; I am aware of my own failure to recognize the livingness of this world; my failure to live in accordance with the knowledge that there are no Things but only Beings. I know this - but I don't experience it very frequently, and live mostly as if the world was indeed dead and indifferent - as our civilization assumes. 

Similarly; I am aware of my own lack-of-awareness of a whole world of spiritual Beings - principally the Dead, particularly the resurrected Dead - but also, presumably, all manner of other spiritual Beings - some on the side of God's creation, others almost indifferent or undecided, others who have chosen to oppose God... I believe these exist and are important; but I am hardly ever aware of them; hardly ever genuinely take them into account. 

I don't suppose any of this can be overcome in any complete or lasting fashion - at least, not by me. There will be this gulf between knowledge and belief on the one hand; and lived experience and practice on the other hand. 

It could be said, therefore, that we are all 'hypocrites' in that nobody lives up to The Good. 

Yet despair is a sin; and we need to counter the consequent pessimism by reminding ourselves that if something is impossible, and God is the creator; then God does not expect it! 

What God, presumably, wants from us is not the perfection but the learning, knowing, and striving. 

What God expects is not material (which, anyway, is always defective, entropic, temporary) but spiritual - and we are only partly and intermittently spiritual Beings.

We need to know enough to know what-we-want: that's the main thing. 

Wednesday 22 November 2023

"Psychopath" is a materialist reduction of "innately evil"

Perhaps the term “psychopath” (when used accurately) is nowadays serving as a materialistic pseudo-medical description of what is actually a spiritual situation: that is, a person with an innately evil nature

That is, a true "psychopath" would be someone who, by nature, is incapable of love

Such people have always been known through history - variously conceptualized. Psychopathy was at one time called “moral insanity”. 

At a psychological level, psychopathy shows as a lack of empathy, or ‘sympathy’; coldness, insensitivity, hardness of personality – the inability to experience emotions appropriate to social relationships. 

But from a spiritual and Christian perspective, such ‘medicalizations’ seem like evasions of a profound spiritual deficit. Qualitative/ total psychopaths are probably rare (although probably more common in some places than others, and more common now than in the past). But it seems there are larger numbers of people whose capacity for love is weak and easily overcome by expedience, or whose capacity for love is only very intermittent. 

Such people are natural allies of the powers of evil, and are capable of serving any agenda, and doing anything – so long as it provides them with personal gratification, or enables them to avoid suffering. 

Spiritually speaking; if someone was a full, "qualitative", total psychopath For Sure; then he would certainly be damned, because he would not want and would reject salvation. A psychopath would not repent his sins; would not be prepared to discard and leave-behind all that was incompatible with Love. Or, from the inverse perspective: Heaven is a state and place of Love - so than any Being incapable of living wholly by Love cannot inhabit Heaven. 

However, (in absolute spiritual terms) because of the reality of free will/ agency; Men's minds and motivations are not transparent, so the status of love-less-ness can be inferred indirectly, but not known with certainty. 

I presume that this lack of certainty is why psychopathic souls – apparently incapable of love, and therefore very probably self-damned – are nonetheless sometimes incarnated. Maybe such souls will, after all, have sufficient capacity for love to choose to follow Jesus? 

Why - spiritually speaking - are there more ‘psychopaths’ nowadays (if that is indeed true) – aside from the obvious biological cause that psychopaths out-reproduce normies under modern social conditions? 

Spiritually speaking; I wonder if the ‘supply’ of pre-mortal human souls that are overall pretty good by-nature is in practice finite, has been mostly used-up; and is therefore recently becoming depleted? 

So modern societies are, in effect, scraping the barrel, because God is perhaps currently incarnating a lot of the dregs!…


The above derives from a comment to a post by Richard Cocks over at the Orthosphere that rather got "out of hand" and off-the-point... 

Tuesday 21 November 2023

JRR Tolkien and the disaster of the Second Vatican Council (Vatican II) - implications for the legalistic sedevacantist position

To judge by his behaviour (if not by his explicit statements) there seems little doubt that JRR Tolkien regarded the consequences of the Second Vatican Council with a combination of deep dismay and horror; indeed, I once wrote that Vatican II may have been the most deeply dismaying event of Tolkien's whole life

His friend (and fellow Catholic) George Sayer; believed that Tolkien saw little or nothing wrong with the pre-Vatican II Roman Catholic Church. 

This is worth contemplating because it shows that a Catholic as devout as Tolkien could be in deep opposition to Vatican II; but without making reference to "legalistic" aspects of the validity of Papal elections. I imagine Tolkien would have found that whole "sedevacantist" line of argument on both sides to be extremely distressing and fraught with dangers - especially when engaged-in by lay people. 

This may have some implications for traditionalist Catholics who all agree that the RCC took a severe wrong turn, a down-turn and movement towards apostasy, with the Second Vatican Council. 

My point is that the disastrous nature of Vatican II may be regarded as common ground among serious Roman Catholics. And indeed all serious Christians of any- or no-denomination, who wish for the recovery and renewal of spiritual health in the largest and most influential Christian church - this may be common ground quite apart from the legal arguments. 

In other words; sedevacantism can reasonably be regarded as one of several (or many) possible hypotheses for explaining the disastrous effect of Vatican II; and, most importantly, how to set it right

It is indeed possible that the sedevacantist legal arguments for why the papal seat is empty might be true; but the legalistic solutions may nonetheless be ineffective or counter-productive in solving the Roman Catholic Church's many and deep problems. 

That is, indeed, my opinion - I mean that the sedevacantist solutions (i.e. their advocated approach to dealing with the RC problems) are ineffective, and would be counter-productive: they are wrong in their spirit

Because I think it can be known in advance - from multiple experiences in multiple churches - that legal solutions will not have a good effect; that a re-set is impossible (and the attempt undesirable) because it will empower the wrong people and set faithful Catholics at each others throats... 

That this negative potential can be known in advance from experience, and legalism eschewed, even despite that (probably) nobody has yet proposed any other clearly promising and practical way of genuinely revitalizing the Roman Catholic Church in the West. 

For what little it is worth; I suspect that an answer might be found in the actual practice of Roman Catholicism at its Christian best; rather than in abstract theories about the matter. 

Something to do with the lives of ordinary Catholics (including 'ordinary' Saints); rather than the models and hypotheses of canon lawyers, theologians, philosophers, church bureaucrats or the like.  

Maybe the most luminous, rich, and inspiring aspects of the pre-Reformation Catholic 'world' - something rather like GK Chesterton's imaginative pictures of "Merrie England" - could be found to contain clues toward the changes that are needed and would work and could grow; and also (and vital) what aspects ought to be de-emphasized... 

Selected cuttings from that ancient tree of faithful living might be planted to yield new and different fruits, but recognizably derived from the same root stock. 

In a world without realistic grounds for optimism; what should we be thinking, and seeking to know?

There are so many physical reasons to fear catastrophic events in "the future" (i.e. any time from now onwards) - that we need repeatedly to remind ourselves that fear is a sin. 

For example; yesterday I heard that (officially) the mass immigration into the UK had reached record levels and expanded the population by more than one percent, more than 700, 000*. This is an increase in population about the size of Sheffield - which is a big and densely inhabited place. Nearly all of these people will be subsidized by many 10,000s of pounds each; also housed and educated and given health care etc. - all at the expense of the native population. A high proportion of the new arrivals are young men, and a significant proportion of these will be violent and criminal. And the real numbers are certain to be larger. 

Yet this is just one of many, many ways in which the leadership class are actively, and increasingly with every year, destroying the UK. Meanwhile the masses are keen on this, or oblivious, or indifferent; because people have no purpose beyond short-termist hedonism and status wrangling.  

If we are focused upon the physical, and on probabilities, there is every reason for extreme pessimism; and no plausible reason to expect any reversal or improvement in trends. Physical, material suffering, societal decline and collapse... such outcomes are near certainties. 

Therefore, it is imperative that we repeatedly repent our fear; and continually remind ourselves of the spiritual context of human life, and of our own personal business here in this mortal existence. 

We each need to clarify and make explicit our spiritual purpose, and seek the spiritual meaning of the actual conditions of our life.  

If we are to roll-back the sin of fear; we cannot allow ourselves to be put into a defensive, besieged, mental posture. 

Our attitude to life must come from our-selves (because there is nobody, no powerful group, no church out there that is even trying to do what is needed). 

We need to see ourselves as a beacon of good-thinking; radiating-out true, beautiful and virtuous thoughts that will affect eternal life. 

To defeat fear we need to take the initiative; our motivations need to emanate from our-selves - our motivations need to be from within-to-out: generative

We need to choose, and to will - but what?

My increasing conviction is that we need to think less abstractly, and more personally; in terms of relationships rather than ideologies (or hypotheses, or models, or even theologies)... 

We need to expand our relationships beyond the decadent and evil values of the physical, material world; and that means into the spiritual world. 

We need, I think, to establish relationships with the resurrected dead. These need to have a role in the world, in and in our lives, going-forward. 

What role? Well, that can only be known after there are such relationships. 

The first step must be to establish contact. With whom? - well, that will depend on each individual and his needs, experiences, motivations; and with who (among the resurrected dead) is trying to contact us, from the spiritual world. 

And how is such contact made: what form might it take? Not, I believe, in the forms of old-style 'mediums', and not in the form of 'channeling', nor of 'conversations'...

Instead; I think that contact with the resurrected dead will be direct: and via mind-to-mind sharing of primary (wordless, imageless) thoughts.

I have previously called this direct-knowing; because it is not mediated by language, symbol or any other intermediary. 

In direct knowing, we know because we share in the knowing of another Being. 

Direct knowing as as valid as the knowledge of the other Being, and our own capacity for understanding. 

And direct knowing is self-validating, a positive and pleasurable experience; and expansion of the scope of thinking - because we are participating in a larger, spiritual and more-divine personal consciousness. 

Here is a kind of plan, or the outline of a possible plan: 

Strive for contact with the resurrected dead whom you love, greatly esteem; and/or who you feel want to contact you. Expect contact rather than communication. And be open to learn from these experiences - because that learning will be the basis for whatever plans you adopt. 

Nobody can do this for you. It depends on your initiative, the Good-ness of your motivation, and your intuitive validation of whatever happens.  

And your path and contribution will be unique. 

(If you do not make this contribution, nobody else can or will - that is how important is the job.)  

*Note: This demonstrates clearly that there has in reality been no Brexit at all with even the slightest significance (since Brexit was 99% motivated by stopping perpetual and accelerating mass immigration, and the consequent population/ cultural annihilation and replacement). All the vast political effort of getting an EU referendum in 2016, and its strong popular Leave vote - had either zero effect; or more plausibly served only to energize the totalitarian-globalist Establishment in pursuing their Sorathic agenda. 

Monday 20 November 2023

Somerset Spirituality in the late 20th century

Although born in Devon; I spent all my school years living in a village in north Somerset. But, because I was (mostly) a rationalistic atheist, I was almost unaware that during this time, as well as for some time afterwards, Somerset was a centre for some of the best exponents of spiritual (including Christian) thinking - several of whom lay within a bicycle ride of my own house. 

Somerset was indeed the residence of several people who since become some of my most important spiritual mentors.  

Mostly, this Christian spirituality was a subset of the fact that (outside of London) the main place for New Age thinking was (as described by historian of paganism Ronald Hutton - who has himself been at Bristol University since 1981) an isosceles triangle with its base cornered by Bristol and Bath, and its point at Glastonbury. 

My lack of interest in this kind of thing - at the time - is evidenced by the fact that I did not visit Glastonbury until after I had left school, and the family was was just about to move to Scotland!

Nonetheless; I believe that spiritual influences of place do have an effect; sometimes all the more powerful for being latent and unacknowledged; and in later life these influences began to pile-in upon me. 

Terry Pratchett (among other things) wrote superbly on aspects of Southern English folklore; and he was living not far away in in tiny Mendip village of Rowberrow, practicing "self-sufficiency", beginning his publishing career, and absorbing the same Electric Folk influences (especially Steeleye Span with their interest in supernatural ballads) that so much dominated my teenage years. 

John Michell - Christian Platonist and Geomancer - was another inhabitant of this region; living in Bath; which city also housed (for a while) our-very-own William Wildblood

Then there was Geoffrey Ashe. He was the only one of these people of whom I was aware at the time; because he was well known as an advocate of South Cadbury Hill Fort as the location of King Arthur's "Camelot". I even visited this impressive earthwork one gloomy Sunday afternoon with my Dad, and felt some of the site's presence. 

William Arkle actually lived in Backwell, the same village as myself ; albeit up on top of Backwell Hill. I knew nothing about him until a few months before I left school, when there was a local BBC TV documentary programme about him. I was intrigued, and tried (without success) to find out more; but was put off making contact by my reflective anti-Christianity (in the programme he talked about God in a manner that I found off-putting). I could very easily have visited and met him - especially since my sister knew the family to talk to, via an interest in ponies - but I didn't...

Another Glastonbury resident in his later life (and a frequent visiter to nearby Winscombe as a child) was Stanley Messenger, an unusually thoughtful and independent-minded Anthroposophist. 

[See note added]

All of the above people have, in different ways and to various degrees, been important to me in my spiritual life and development. All have significant Somerset connections, and all (except Stanley M, I think) overlapped with my residence of the county, and were indeed situated nearby. 

This now strikes me as quite remarkable - because the above names constitute a large proportion of the authors, thinkers, lecturers - learning from whom has led me to where I am now. 

Clearly, Somerset set its mark upon me; and that influence has continued to grow in the 45-plus years since I moved away.  

Note added 5th December 2023: I have just discovered that the folk musician Bob Stewart (expert Psaltery player) and scholar of folk mythology (Where is St George? - recommended!) was living in Bristol and Bath from the late 1960s and into the 1980s. He later went on - renamed RJ Stewart - to become associated with Gareth Knight, a prolific and influential author of books on ritual magic, and workshop leader. 

Sins are Not finite and discrete - therefore they are un-countably numerous

It is probably a consequence of the legalistic notion of religion (e.g. The Ten Commandments specifically and the Hebrew Law generally) that there are specific categories of sins, and that Men in their lives will commit a certain finite and (in principle) countable number of these sins. 

This then suggests that there must (sooner or later) be some kind of reckoning of sin; whereby each Man must be evaluated and compensate for the specific sins which he has committed. For instance; I have heard it said that after death a Christian must (in some way or another) be confronted by, and account for, each and all of the sins he committed during mortal life.

But this is wrong; because sins are in truth a consequence of our nature and that of this world. They are the degree by which we diverge from a complete harmony with God's creative purpose. 

This divergence, this failure to live-by-love, is not a matter of X number of specific acts; but instead a matter of every Man having (to lesser or greater degree) a wrong orientation, wrong motivations, wrong gratifications etc. 

Sin is the consequential totality of being-wrong and going-wrong, of divergence from the divine.  

Some Christians talk as if they themselves, or most other people, are Basically Good; and commit just a few sins per day/ month/ year. And they are able to think like this because they only count Big Sins (e.g. breaches of the Ten Commandments, or Canon Law), and completely ignore (or accept as inevitable hence 'natural' - hence they 'don't count') the innumerable instances of (for example) spite, fear, dishonesty, resentment, lust, despair etc; which everyone experiences every day - indeed every waking (or dreaming) hour. 

But that is a wrong description of the human condition. Each of us comes into the world as an unique Being and into an unique family and social environment; and we make an unique set of choices. 

And all of us are, to a significant degree, un-aligned with the 'perfect' life which would be lived entirely by love...

Sometimes we do come into harmony, and therefore we experience to some degree what a Good life is like; but inevitably we will soon steer or drift "off course" again. All who are capable will experience the Good in order that every such person can know it, and then potentially choose Good; after death when given the opportunity to follow Jesus Christ. 

Eternal resurrected life in Heaven is the perfection which we mortal beings on earth cannot attain: indeed, the fact that it is unattainable is exactly why Heaven is necessary; and why Jesus Christ was mortally born and did his work of salvation: so that we - like Him - could attain to Heaven via death.    

After death we are not - therefore - confronted with, and called to account for, our sins understood as a sequence of discrete phenomena that must individually repented. The situation is Not a double-negative of cancelling sin. I see things the other way around, almost. 

What we are confronted-with is the positive and unitary choice of whether to follow Jesus, and be admitted to Heaven - this, on condition of leaving-behind anything about us that is inconsistent with that wholly-loving reality. 

One who loves Jesus, and loves God enough (a Saint, perhaps), or even one who desires to be in Heaven unconditionally because of those deceased that he loved and who love him who are already there (and, aside, I think that contact with the beloved resurrected dead will be apparent at that point) - such people will make that decision for Heaven quite easily. 

But others may find that there is some particular "thing" about himself that he is reluctant to "give up", some "blockage" that stops him from making the choice of Heaven. 

This is known as his besetting sin. 

Then a particular and discrete choice may arise that corresponds to a particular and specific "sin" in the more traditional sense. Then we will be confronted with the need to repent that besetting sin which blocks our access to Heaven* - and it will be made clear that we must give-up that part of our mortal selves if we are to live eternally "in Love". 

In sum: the choice of Heaven is not understandable in terms of repenting every one of a large number of particular sins; because that is a wrong way to understand sin. In reality, our sins are uncountable, because they are not categorical and because they are so integral to our being and this world. 

However; many people apparently have a broadly-categorical besetting sin (or more than one) that, unless repented, will block the decision to choose salvation. And such specific sins may indeed need specifically to be confronted and repented.  

*Note: This was, for me, helpfully depicted in CS Lewis's The Great Divorce. h/t - A recent comment by Mia triggered the above reflections. 

Sunday 19 November 2023

WD Hamilton's "Hospital Society" has already arrived - it cannot be prevented, therefore our task is 'spiritually' to learn from it

The Hospital Society, where almost everybody is ill, was predicted by the great evolutionary theorist WD Hamilton, as an inevitable consequence of mutation accumulation, mainly (but not wholly) due to the decline in the massively reduced selection-out of deleterious genes from a reduction in child mortality rates from more than 50% to about 1%. 

Hamilton predicted that the Hospital Society would at first be the more-impaired being looked-after by the less-impaired; but as things proceeded, firstly the less-impaired would fail to look-after their sicker compatriots, and then the less-impaired be unable to look after themselves...

At which point current civilization would collapse utterly; and some other form of living - presumably much poorer, simpler, smaller scale - would eventually supervene.  

The Hospital Society is already here, and the trajectory is as Hamilton described; except that the illnesses are mostly "psychiatric" - that is, they are impairments in fitness; visible in sexual and social pathologies of behaviour. 

In other words; the major form of - presumably genetic - illness in the current West (and perhaps elsewhere) is seen in the endemic majority suffering from a wide range of psychological impairments that effect even, or especially, the youngest generations... 

With each generation more extremely and pervasively impaired in their biological fitness than the one before.  

It is important to clarify that biological fitness is an objective concept; which is a measure of the chance of reproductive success in a given human society. 

Reproductive success requires first survival, but then fertility of more than the threshold of replacement fertility (somewhat more than two children per woman, the exact number depending on societal child mortality rates). 

Furthermore, the more-than-two offspring must themselves be reproductively viable (i.e. the offspring must want-to, and be-able-to, themselves reproduce above replacement). In practice, this means an average of at least three surviving children per woman. 

The problem with mutation accumulation is that it can become terminal, when mutations accumulate faster than natural selection can sieve them out; and this will happen much more rapidly and inevitably when populations are shrinking; since natural selection can then only be very weak and slow. 

Looking around at the world, I see that genuine biological fitness has become extremely rare among adolescents and adults; and those who are among the most "health and fitness" focused are among the most psychologically pathological. 

We live in a world of sickness; a society where sickness is the norm and viable levels of biological fitness are almost unknown. 

My own impression is that the situation has become irrevocable; not least because in a world where everyone is psychiatrically impaired (to a greater or lesser extent) then (almost inevitably) the mainstream societal ideology becomes one in which psychological (sexual and social) pathologies are defended, rationalized - then promoted and supported. 

A genuinely spiritual religion - that recognized a world beyond the material and the possibility of eternal life - might be able to provide a world view in which Mankind could honestly face this reality, and learn from it in ways that would be of benefit to our life beyond death...

But there is no such religion at the social level; and therefore the social and individual experience of the Hospital Society is likely to be almost wholly negative: a matter of more and more material suffering and relentless collapsing of physical functionality. 

What positive perspective might we adopt as such a scenario unfolds? As long as there is life, there are reasons to live - or else God would not be sustaining us alive. 

Rather than focusing primarily or exclusively on present happiness and physical survival, which can - at best - be a merely temporary extension of our finite mortality; we need to understand and learn from what is happening. 

And by learning, I means spiritual learning - the learning of fundamental lessons such as those concerning the human condition, divine creation, and God.   

Saturday 18 November 2023

JRR Tolkien's two, very different, "silver-handed" characters

Another silver-handed character, but not from Tolkien... 
"Wormtail" from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by JK Rowling

A note on a striking but contrasting re-use of the given-nickname "silver-handed", with resonances spanning across some thirty years of Tolkien's writing life. 

Cons and pros of a happy childhood

A happy childhood is a form of what Owen Barfield called Original Participation; that is to say, it is a mostly unconscious and spontaneous immersion-in the society of the family and more generally. The child feels a belonging that it not separated from 'the world'. 

When a childhood is happy, adolescence is likely to be a threat to that happiness; because of its psychological and spiritual separation from parental values, and the need to choose whether to accept or reject parental values; the loss of spontaneous engagement with the world; and an increasing self-consciousness. With adolescence there will be (whether threatening, or actual) some significant degree of isolation and loneliness. 

The happy childhood may lead to the attempt to reject adolescence in at least some of its aspects; a holding-onto childhood happiness - and this can work - to some degree, and for some time. 

However, sooner or later, adolescence will drive-away the spontaneity of childhood modes of being, and it will be discovered that they cannot be simulated convincingly. 

Therefore, adolescence will eventually separate us from the Original Participation of childhood, and precipitate us into the alienated state of the Consciousness Soul, as it is termed - which is the adolescent state-of-being of an individual, and also of our society. 

The pathological spiritual state of this modern (especially Western world) will then tend permanently to trap the maturing individual in this alienated state of a permanent adolescence; and modern people will be socially-encouraged to seek adolescent gratifications. 

(Hence the nature of modernity; and its images and goals.)

Indeed, in a world of materialism and spirit-rejection; a world where the divine is excluded from all public discourse and plays very little primary role in religious discourse; it requires a personal, individual, inwardly-motivated "quest" even to seek beyond the short-termist gratification - but purposelessness and meaninglessness - of modern pseudo-adulthood. 

The deficiencies of this state become more and more apparent with advancing age and the onset of old-age (when we recognize that feeling, looking and behaving younger is the only publicly-approved ideal); although the harshness of alienation may well be ameliorated considerably, albeit vicariously and temporarily, by creating a happy family life, and participating in the situation of a happy childhood for one's own children.   

But the temptation of an idealistic yearning for a return to a happier early life (or even an imagined happier earlier life - i.e. childhood as we know innately it should have been, and sometimes is), is a yearning temptation that will seldom diminish - unless some kind of a spiritual revolution and the goal of a state beyond perpetual adolescence is accomplished. 

Hence, a happy childhood presents a problem in the world as it now is - a problem that does not go-away unless it is overcome; unless that early happiness can be understood as a foretaste of some higher state of being that is yet to come, and which is indeed attainable. 

Some people tend towards a hoped-for return to that childhood state, or indeed a complete and permanent version of the partial and temporary childhood state, in the world after death... 

Such are the desires for a paradise of unselfconscious, merely-being after death - entailing the dissolving of our plaguing sense of self, and the cessation of that adult thinking which separates us from life, the world, other people. 

At extreme; the desire is a total rejection of consciousness and its curses; yearning for an afterlife without body, a life as a pure spirit that is not separated from the divine or is continuous-with the rest of the world... A bliss state, a comfortable sleep.

As it were, a return back through childhood to the womb, and beyond into non-being - non-separation. This entailing a recognition of the futility of this earthly life - handing-back the entrance ticket of incarnation into mortality, and acknowledging that this world is wrong, bad, a torment - something best left as soon as possible.  

However, the happy childhood can be taken otherwise. It can be learned-from, instead of being either rejected (in favour of permanent arrested development in adolescence), or else something to be recapitulated (as some version of a future eternal and completed childhood). 

Childhood happiness can taken as evidence of the possibility of happiness as a separate and incarnated being; an experience from which we can learn in order to move beyond and to something higher, more satisfying across an eternal timescale. 

By my understanding, it is the possibility of an eternal higher happiness that is precisely what is on-offer with resurrection into eternal Heavenly life. 

But that is only fully and finally accessible via the portals of death. So how can that be helpful to our life here-and-now? 

The first thing to say is that the possibility of future post-mortal higher-happiness does not in any way guarantee present happiness in this mortal life. Indeed, the specifics of this mortal life - its degrees of happiness and misery, are as variable as the number of people alive and who have died. 

To look forward in faith to salvation does not "make us happy" here-and-now.   

But - such a prospect before us does make the miseries of this mortal life potentially worthwhile; and it is up-to each of us to realize this potential by learning from our suffering - as well as by striving-for and valuing our present happiness. 

Why are the commonest sins neglected? Because they are socially-approved

The spiritual war is fought in public over whether the 'sins' of mainstream, totalitarian leftist-materialism ought to be regarded as primary (e.g. racism, sexism' climate- or peck-denialism...); or whether instead the traditional Christian sins such as adultery, fornication, drunkenness etc.) ought to be the major focus. 

(The mainstream has the advantage in this dispute because they deny that the Christian sins are sinful at all, but rather virtues; while the self-identified Christians usually agree with the totalitarian left that attitudes such as racism, sexism, and -denialism are indeed sins - and will, for example - routinely and officially exclude leaders who disagree with any of the mainstream leftist definitions of 'sin'.) 

My usual list of the most dominating sins of this time and place includes fear, resentment, dishonesty and despair. 

But these are - at best - almost completely neglected by Christian teaching - which continues to focus on more traditional (and spectacular!) sins of a sexual nature; or sins that are (at least officially) still against the law: things like murder, rape, theft etc. 

Such a focus has the unfortunate (but probably deliberate) effect of creating and sustaining "Pharisaism" among Christians, which I would here define as the belief that sin can be avoided - with enough effort

Well, yes! Spectacular sins can indeed be avoided. And avoiding these is made much easier by the fact that they are socially dis-approved, and if detected they will be punished. 

But my understanding is that Jesus said this was not only insufficient, but a harmful attitude to life. 

Sin, as such, is so pervasive in the human condition as to be unavoidable; and the belief that sin can be avoided leads to what Jesus termed 'hypocrisy' - that is, to assumptions of purity and authority on the basis of being (at least publicly) able to avoid a few extreme and spectacular sins; while neglecting the far more frequent, but equally in need of repentance, sins of everyday life - such as dishonesty.

Did you murder anyone yesterday? Probably not. And, if you did, you probably repent it. 

But were you dishonest yesterday? Yes You Were! And probably dozens, maybe hundreds of times; especially if you are a manager or a professional or any kind of leader. 

Indeed, most middle class people are dishonest as an essential (and growing) element of their job: they are strategically, calculatedly dishonest for-a-living.  

Did you repent these dishonesties - did you even notice them at all? Even worse - do you regard yourself as a truthful person, and deny that you were and are dishonest? 

Sins such as dishonesty are un-noticed and therefore un-repented because they are socially-approved, and often socially rewarded: 

Back in 2020-2021; we were all socially expected to fear the birdemic - and anyone who did not express sufficient fear was regarded as a danger to public health. 

Resentment is the motivational basis of antiracism, feminism, socialism and many other leftist ideologies (and several actually-left but supposedly-right ideologies such as nationalism); and nowadays such resentment (whether personal, or vicariously expressed 'on behalf of' the 'oppressed') is mandatory in public discourse. 

A manager and a politician is rewarded for dishonesty (e.g. calculated misleading, untruthfulness and indeed lying - if lies effective and deniable); and will be sacked if he refuses. Much the same applies to scientists, doctors, lawyers, church leaders, economists, the police and military... essentially it applies everybody in leadership or 'expert' positions in major social institutions. 

My point here - which I think was also Jesus's point in His teaching - is that we sin all the time, and deliberately - and we have no intention of ceasing to sin when those sins are socially-allowed/ mandatory; because to do so would put us out of a job, and exclude us from human society. 

Fortunately (!); Jesus came to save sinners, and not those (non-existent) persons who are sin-less.  

Jesus asks 'merely' that we acknowledge that we sin all the time, and cannot (indeed we do not wish to) stop sinning: and 'yet' these and we are exactly those who Jesus can and will save... So long as we are prepared to acknowledge and repent the fact.  

How does this fit with salvation? Well, in the Fourth Gospel ("John") the word "sin" is mostly used to mean "death" - that is, death without resurrection, death without salvation. 

Resurrection (i.e. eternal life, instead of death) depends on what we can call repentance, not on ceasing to sin. 

And repentance is necessary to salvation because resurrection requires that we are prepared to acknowledge sin as sin, and leave it behind us before we can proceed to eternal life in Heaven. After all, Heaven would not be Heaven if sin was still present - there can be no sin in Heaven; but we are all sinful, nearly all the time; therefore we must reject All sin before we can be resurrected into Heaven.

Repentance can therefore be thought of as the firm intent to leave-behind all sin (spectacular and unnoticed) when the choice and chance of resurrection comes to us (presumably, after death), and when all such sins shall be brought to our attention*. 

To "follow Jesus" means to repent all our sins. And it is those sins that are socially un-recognized, denied, or rewarded which are far less likely to be repented than the big and obvious sins on which nearly-everybody is agreed.   

*We cannot, of course, recognize all our individual sins during this mortal life - there are too many, and we lack sufficient discernment! But we can avoid falling into the damnation-trap of denying sin, especially when it is brought to our awareness. That way, when we come to the point of decision, we will not be held back from salvation by our habitual, ingrained and calculated unwillingness to let-go of 'the least of' our sins. For instance; someone who has spent forty years 'justifying' his own deliberate dishonesties in the workplace; may find it very difficult to acknowledge that dishonesty Must utterly and forever be repudiated in Heaven. 

Friday 17 November 2023

Is it a certainty that The Church will (in a meaningfully Christian sense) necessarily endure?

Traditionalist Roman Catholic blogger, Matthew Archbold, finds 'comfort' in these words of Hilaire Belloc: The Catholic Church is an institution I am bound to hold divine – but for unbelievers a proof of its divinity might be found in the fact that no merely human institution conducted with such knavish imbecility would have lasted a fortnight

To which I left the following comment (slightly edited):

I think you are mistaken to take comfort in Belloc's words. 

I see nothing at all to suggest that the Roman Catholic Church is, in any way, immune to the convergence, hollowing-out, "skin-suit" fate of all the other large Western institutions. Its trajectory is identical with that of - say - Oxford University, which is also very long-lived (nearly 1000 years) and of unsurpassed reputation in scholarship over many centuries; and yet has (with remarkable swiftness and completeness) become an academy of lies and evil. 

Of course, your confidence that the RCC will last 'forever' (i.e. last as a faithful church and not as merely a mask for totalitarian materialism) is actually rooted in your assumptions, and not in evidence; yet most people would regard the scriptural/ theological/ traditional grounds for these assumptions as both slender and ambivalent*. 

In sum, it would be a stronger position for the RCC if those (many) real Christians who are yet present in it, would regard the true church as something vulnerable to human corruption. 

If that church is to be saved from becoming assimilated to the demonic agenda of the globalist totalitarians, it will need members to locate the true church in their own hearts (in communion with the Holy Ghost) rather than somewhere present in the increasingly corrupted bureaucracy. 

(Recall how the actual RCC abandoned centuries of dogma and theology almost overnight in 2020; when the church willingly, enthusiastically agreed to its own closure for an undefined time period - which in practice for many people lasted many months during which there were no sacraments. Lourdes - the premier place of spiritual healing - was actually Closed... Just think what That implies about the RCC.) 

If the true and mystical church is located somewhere in the actual institution of the RCC, it will still require personal discernment to find that mystical-true church, among the great outnumbering mass of fifth-columnists, demonic servants, and time-servers.

* For example (especially), in that most-unreliable (IMO) of Gospels, Matthew 16:8 - And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Such a phrase (no matter how often repeated) is awfully little upon-which to hang one's absolute faith in what is already (and increasingly) a top-down-implemented and actively-evil material institution. 

Thursday 16 November 2023

The Red Pill is a Blue Pill when foreign wars are concerned

The Red Pill is, both in the Matrix movie and in real life, in truth just another Blue Pill. 

This is because the depicted Red Pill, and also the supposed Red Pills of a vast amount of pseudo-anti-left stuff on the internet over the past twenty-something years; is just more politics, more sociology, more psychology... Just another variant of the usual materialist (spirit-excluding) public discourse.

The real-reality behind the fake-reality of mass mainstream official discourse concerning wars/ climate/ racism/ the birdemic/ inequity etc - is that the spiritual is primary, and all this is a manifestation of spiritual war

Any valid Red Pill should clarify that we are the beloved children of that God whose creation we all inhabit - and anything short of this is a dangerously partial distortion of real-reality. 

Fictional or factual depictions of the masses as mind-controlled, exploited and enslaved, tormented creatures etc - are Blue Pills unless they include that the motivating purpose of this is spiritual; totalitarianism is a means to spiritual ends.     

Socio-political discourse is nearly-always a Blue Pill; because it neglects, excludes and denies that we inhabit A Divine Creation; and that this creation - including the souls of Men - is under continual attack from demonic and demon-affiliated powers.  

Almost-all the Red Pill discourse I have encountered (whether using the Pill terminology or simply socio-political ideology masquerading as revelations of reality) functions as indirect propaganda for the exclusive reality of the material world. 

Exposes of merely political underlying structures and mechanisms are tacit denials that the material is only a part of the spiritual; they constitute an implicit exclusion of the reality that our mortal life and this earth are (if we so choose) a temporary and transitional stage leading to the eternity of resurrected Heavenly life.  

Thus (as a topical instance) the real Red-Pill reality includes that the current Fire Nation or Arrakis wars are (in their different ways) spiritual wars - ultimately these are conflicts over the souls of Men and the future of God's creation. 

Ultimately; as far as you and I are concerned, these primarily spiritual wars are only very indirectly related to whatever might (or might not) be happening materially in these wars. Material war (i.e what actually happens 'on the ground') are, spiritually speaking, almost (but not quite) irrelevant to the spiritual war currently afoot in your soul and mine. 

(Rather than being, as usually considered, the proper subject matter of Red Pill reality.)   

That is the true and spiritual framework within-which these and other wars are happening, here and now, and in the way that they being presented and conducted. 

And it is just-another Blue Pill to pretend otherwise.  

Wednesday 15 November 2023

'Trad' Christians: arguing from a position of weakness (by their own standards)

Just an observation, and something that (I believe) honest Trad Christians need to be aware of in themselves...

Almost any traditional form of Christianity (whether Roman Catholic, Orthodox, Calvinist, Mormon, or whatever) can mount a very deadly attack on... 'the other guy'. 

In other words; once you have accepted a coherent set of theological premises; you can use these as an effective basis to attack any other religion, denomination - or no religion. 

So long as you stick to your own premises, and refuse to acknowledge these premises as being metaphysical assumptions that you-yourself have chosen to adopt -- you can easily impress yourself at the rigour and vigour of your own deadly dialectic! 

You can even convince yourself that effective argument from your chosen-but-denied-assumed premises is a validation of these premises; meaning they must be true (i.e. necessarily true for all Men, at all times and places). 

You can impress and convince yourself, perhaps; but it does not impress other people; because they do not share your chosen-premises, and they can see your baseline assumptions for what they are...  

So, this kind of Trad Christian may be smug and confident; but to anyone else outside the assumptions he will appear a deluded fanatic: someone who attacks all the time because he must; and he must always attack because has no effective defence

To the outsider; this kind of Trad Christian is just another example of the New Age mantra of: "it works for me". 

The idea that truth is whatever works... 

This is so, because no type of Christianity works as a whole; none are 'doing well'; no churches are large and powerful and growing... and also Christian

Therefore the Trad Christian is, in effect, one who tries (but fails) to assert that because "it works for me", therefore "it is objectively and necessarily true for everybody". 

My point is that the validity of Trad Christianity is only from-within, and it "works" only at the individual (or small group) level.   

In other words; the validity of Trad Christianity is of the exact same type as the validity of Romantic Christianity - that is, Trad Christianity is valid insofar as it motivates and sustains the individual to be and remain Christian. 

In yet other words; Trad Christianity is invalidated by the same standards from which it is derived. 

...That is, Trad Christianity is implicitly an assertion of the primacy of the validity of an institutional church - yet the corruption and weakness of all churches-as-institutions is the strongest argument against Trad Christianity.  

I call upon Trad Christians explicitly to acknowledge (to themselves) this fact (as it seems) - and its implications. I mean the fact that here-and-now, 2023 in The West - traditional Christianity works (when it does work) at an individual level primarily; and there is no honest basis for basing argument upon the publicly objective validity of any specific form of church, institution, theology, Biblical interpretation or other set of assumptions. 

All effective Christianity Just Is rooted in individual discernment and responsibility; and we need to be honest enough to acknowledge this - or else we are living a lie built on a delusion. 

Aggressively ranting and raving, or even manic self-congratulation and boasting, does no more objective good than (maybe) operating as a form of self-psychotherapy, intended to conceal-from oneself a fundamental personal dishonesty.  

What is the relationship between Christianity and the decline of the world? The basis of Romantic Christianity

It used to be assumed (taken for granted) among Christians, that the coming of Jesus Christ made the world a better place in some ultimate sense; and that conversion of a person or nation to being Christian did much the same. 

But I regard it as a fact that - spiritually - the world now is much worse than was the world 2000 years ago; because there has never before been so much (and top-down, official, propagandized, mandatory) inversion of true values

I regard Christianity as essentially about the next world, not this-world; so its effects on this-world are secondary to changes in attitudes and expectations consequent upon the desire for salvation. It is the desire for salvation - and also the expectation - that constitute the main societal effect of Christianity; and this main effect has manifested very differently among Christians of different types, times and places.  

Standing where we are, in 2023 and in The West; we find a world that has not just turned away from Christianity, but turned against it. 

Like it or not; the societal agendas of Christianity (and the other religions) have been subverted, corrupted... and are now largely subordinated-to, indeed assimilated-into, an international leftist, atheist, materialist ideology. 

A Christian now stands largely alone, or with a handful of companions; in a world where institutions (including churches) are actively net-evil - or else in present danger of becoming-so. 

The fact of Christianity's failure to make the world a better place ought not to surprise anyone whose faith is rooted in the Fourth Gospel - but that has not been the basis of Christianity (which, in practice, is rooted in the Synoptic Gospels, the Epistles, or church theology and tradition). 

When it became a church-focused, church-mediated, religion; Christianity almost-inevitably became primarily social. The church agenda was more often mainly up-front about this-wordly behaviour; and only much more secondarily and remotely about resurrection and Heaven. 

Indeed, Christianity has often become millennialist in its nature; and focused upon this-world being saved and redeemed by a second coming of Jesus Christ - implicitly acknowledging that Jesus only half-succeeded in his mission, and needed to come-back in order to finish the job. 

This, as I say, was partly a consequence of the expectation that Christianity implied that the world - this mortal world - would become a better place: indeed a perfect place. The coming of Jesus from heaven to Earth was taken to mean that a process had-been initiated by which the Earth would (by some combination of gradual and radical change) become Heaven. 

Well, as I said above; not only has this not (yet?) happened after 2000 years - but (IMO) this-world is further from Heaven, than ever before in the history of Mankind. Realistically, therefore, Christianity is now an individual-level religion - essentially 'about' the spiritual relationship between the individual Christian and Jesus Christ... Or else (if society is regarded the index of success) Christianity is a failure, and looks set to become worse. 

Another aspect of the two millennium span since the time of Jesus Christ is that Men have changed from being immersed in their group identities, to being very-much individuals. Insofar as modern Men have group identities, these are chosen (and often changed). 

In the past, Men lived essentially as part of various groups they were born-into or socialized-into; much of their behaviour was spontaneous and driven by unconscious group factors; and their choices were merely amounted to 'take it or leave it', and were very much buried in those identities. 

Indeed, this immersive unconsciousness is probably why a church based Christianity was inevitable 2K years ago. It simply did not make sense (it was not a matter of awareness) to Men of that era, that an individual could and did exist primarily apart from the groups into-which he has been born... And therefore (because he has-chosen) that each Man's religion just-is now his own responsibility. 

Nowadays, this alienated individualist state (sometimes termed alienation) has gone from being the subject of vast comment and discussion, to being simply taken for granted and unavoidable.  

So; these are two great conclusions that I draw from the past 2000 years: 

First that Christianity is not primarily about the world, but about each individual Christian; and second that nowadays (like it or not) we experience ourselves primarily as individuals. 

I said these seem like 'facts' to me; but of course that isn't really accurate: I see them as assumptions that are unavoidable when I am honest with myself.  

And this forms the basis, my foundation, of that way of being a Christian that I (and a few others) term Romantic Christianity