Friday, January 31, 2014

Remembering Lee - III

Are we in the South today better than our forefathers?  Are we more righteous than they?  Are we more neighborly?  More generous?  More pious?  More humble?  Do we have stronger extended families?  More Christians, and more devout Christians, among us?  Tend better the garden of creation?  Practice a less materialistic way of living?

Or do we have pride because godless men sneeringly call us ‘the Bible Belt’?  All the while we fill the cup of God’s wrath for ourselves and our children by taking into our hearts the sins of the New England Puritans - deifying the American Empire, wallowing in greed, etc. - who have done their best to destroy the culture of the Old South.

We sin more grievously than our mothers and fathers, but do not even know it.

Where are the leaders who will speak to us plainly as Gen Lee did during The War?

‘ . . . But the contest must be long and severe, and the whole country [i.e., the South-W.G.] has to go through much suffering.  It is necessary we should be humbled and taught to be less boastful, less selfish, and more devoted to right and justice to all the world . . .’  (Letter of Gen Lee to his wife, Mrs Mary Lee, of 8 Feb. 1862, Capt Robert Edward Lee, Recollections and Letters of Robert E. Lee, Cosimo Classics, 2008 [1904], p. 64; also available here: http://www.gutenberg.org/files/2323/2323-h/2323-h.htm#link2HCH0027, accessed 31 Jan. 2014).

And again in an order to his soldiers issued on 13 August 1863:

‘The President of the Confederate States has, in the name of the people, appointed August 21st as a day of fasting, humiliation, and prayer. A strict observance of the day is enjoined upon the officers and soldiers of this army. All military duties, except such as are absolutely necessary, will be suspended. The commanding officers of brigades and regiments are requested to cause divine services, suitable to the occasion, to be performed in their respective commands. Soldiers! we have sinned against Almighty God. We have forgotten His signal mercies, and have cultivated a revengeful, haughty, and boastful spirit. We have not remembered that the defenders of a just cause should be pure in His eyes; that 'our times are in His hands,' and we have relied too much on our own arms for the achievement of our independence. God is our only refuge and our strength. Let us humble ourselves before Him. Let us confess our many sins, and beseech Him to give us a higher courage, a purer patriotism, and more determined will; that He will hasten the time when war, with its sorrows and sufferings, shall cease, and that He will give us a name and place among the nations of the earth’ (Recollections, pgs. 105-6; also available here: http://www.gutenberg.org/files/2323/2323-h/2323-h.htm#link2HCH0029, accessed 31 Jan. 2014).

What will become of the South if we do not repent?  Father Andrew tells us:

If we distance ourselves from the Creator, then we distance ourselves from the grace of God and the protection of the Holy Spirit. God does not leave us, but we leave Him. To abandon God is to be like a soldier who goes into battle without any body armour; it means inviting mortal wounds. To live our lives without God in them is to subject them to the ‘elemental’ forces of the fallen Cosmos, to the ‘elemental’ forces of fallen Nature, to the ‘elemental’ forces of fallen mankind. And what are ‘elemental’ forces? They are simply demonic forces. All ‘natural’ and ‘manmade’ catastrophes, so-called ‘acts of God’ come from this. The demons want only one thing – our suffering, for they are the source of all suffering, whether through corruption, crime, war, disease, hurricane, earthquake or flooding.

Source:  http://www.events.orthodoxengland.org.uk/retribution/, published 19 Jan. 2014, accessed 31 Jan. 2014.

God, in His boundless mercy, however, has granted us this great blessing, which our forefathers had not: the presence of His Orthodox Church in our midst.  Through her will come the salvation of the South (and all the world).  To her, let us hearken and hasten.

Works Cited

Captain Robert Edward Lee, Recollections and Letters of Robert E. Lee, New York, Ny: Cosimo Classics, 2008 [1904].  (Available free to download here:  http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/2323)

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Satanic Acts at the Grammys?

‘Within New Age esoteric societies, it is taught that we must go through mass “planetary initiations” for the realization of “The Plan.” [for a New World Order-W.G.]  As we have seen, . . . these initiations will be “Luceferic” at their esoteric core’ (Hieromonk Damascene, Father Seraphim Rose: His Life and Works, 3rd ed., Platina, Ca.: St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhood, 2010,  p. 700).

Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you’ (James 4:7).

What happened at the Grammys Sunday night?  Not one, but three satanic acts were on display.


And now the Super Bowl is only days away.  We must not be so naïve as to think our enemies (spiritual and in the flesh) will overlook the opportunity to corrupt millions of souls and minds just as they did at the Grammys in an attempt to further their goals. 

Indeed, they have done this very thing in the past (the relevant portion of the report starts about a minute into the video): 


We must protect those we love and ourselves against any sort of evil influence by not watching (or watching with great care if it cannot be helped) any nationally broadcast event of this type.  (Of course, avoiding the television in general is a good idea.)

Be on your guard!  The evil one desires our destruction.  We must resist him and his fallen servants, and cling to God.

‘And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues’ (Revelation 18:4).

We will not be ‘popular’ for turning our backs on these spectacles, but we will help our souls and gain approval from the Lord of Hosts.

Monday, January 27, 2014

An Urgent Plea from the Tenth Amendment Center

The men and women at the Tenth Amendment Center (TAC) are doing yeoman’s work in promoting nullification among state and local officials and among the media.  Having now come under attack by a George Soros-funded outfit, we must conclude that they are beginning to make real progress.  However, they are in urgent need of financial help.  Please read the letter below from Michael Boldin (the TAC founder) and contribute as you are able.

I don't know how else to put this

I'm not really good at being a politician, because I generally despise them.  So all I can do is shoot straight from the hip. I hope you can appreciate my honesty.

Today, the Tenth Amendment Center received a direct attack by the George Soros-funded ThinkProgress - a major establishment organization with tens of millions of dollars at their disposal.

If we don't get some help  taking these people on, we're in some big trouble.  We just can't keep going on like this, begging to barely get by. 

please help us HERE:  
http://rally.org/tenthamendmentcenter

Here are some choice quotes about TAC at ThinkProgress today:

"radical tactics"
"makes John Calhoun look like a moderate"
"They fear the federal government with pathological intensity"
our goal is "burning it down"

They basically warned people to not work with us because we are so dangerous to the future of the country.

HERE'S OUR SERIOUS PROBLEM:

The TAC is operated from a spare bedroom, now a home office, in my apartment.  We're going head to head with the NSA, gun control, Obamacare, and George Freaking Soros.

We are struggling to raise a mere $30,000, and are actually 4 thousand
SHORT!  But with that little, we've still had so much impact that this Soros group is attacking us.

30 thousand vs 40 million.  This is David v Goliath.  We'll continue taking them on, but you know what?  30K isn't really going to cut it.  4 more thousand gets us to our baseline goal - so we can stay open.  We really need significantly more than that.

Please help us out in a big way right now:
http://rally.org/tenthamendmentcenter

 . . .

The rest of his message is here:


For more information on the Tenth Amendment Center, please visit their web page:

Friday, January 24, 2014

Remembering Lee - II

The South remains, languishing, awaiting the rise of a better generation, one that loves its forefathers and mothers, cleansed of the filth of money-getting and all sinfulness, renewed and filled with light and beauty by the Holy Spirit.

In his poem ‘Lee in the Mountains’ Donald Davidson looked forward to such a day, as should we all.

From that poem:

 . . .

If all were told, as it cannot be told--
If all the dread opinion of the heart
Now could speak, now in the shame and torment
Lashing the bound and trampled States—

If a word were said, as it cannot be said--
I see clear waters run in Virginia's Valley
And in the house the weeping of young women
Rises no more. The waves of grain begin.
The Shenandoah is golden with a new grain.
The Blue Ridge, crowned with a haze of light,
Thunders no more. The horse is at plough. The rifle
Returns to the chimney crotch and the hunter's hand.
And nothing else than this? Was it for this
That on an April day we stacked our arms
Obedient to a soldier's trust? To lie
Ground by heels of little men,

Forever maimed, defeated, lost, impugned?
And was I then betrayed? Did I betray?
If it were said, as it still might be said--
If it were said, and a word should run like fire,
Like living fire into the roots of grass,
The sunken flag would kindle on wild hills,
The brooding hearts would waken, and the dream
Stir like a crippled phantom under the pines,
And this torn earth would quicken into shouting
Beneath the feet of the ragged bands—

The pen


Turns to the waiting page, the sword
Bows to the rust that cankers and the silence.

Among these boys whose eyes lift up to mine
Within gray walls where droning wasps repeat
A hollow reveille, I still must face,
Day after day, the courier with his summons
Once more to surrender, now to surrender all.
Without arms or men I stand, but with knowledge only
I face what long I saw, before others knew,
When Pickett's men streamed back, and I heard the tangled
Cry of the Wilderness wounded, bloody with doom.

The mountains, once I said, in the little room
At Richmond, by the huddled fire, but still
The President shook his head. The mountains wait,
I said, in the long beat and rattle of siege
At cratered Petersbyrg. Too late
We sought the mountains and those people came.
And Lee is in the mountains now, beyond Appomatox,
Listening long for voices that will never speak
Again; hearing the hoofbeats that come and go and fade
Without a stop, without a brown hand lifting
The tent-flap, or a bugle call at dawn,
Or ever on the long white road the flag
Of Jackson's quick brigades. I am alone,
Trapped, consenting, taken at last in mountains.

It is not the bugle now, or the long roll beating.
The simple stroke of a chapel bell forbids
The hurtling dream, recalls the lonely mind.
Young men, the God of your fathers is a just
And merciful God Who in this blood once shed
On your green altars measures out all days,
And measures out the grace
Whereby alone we live;
And in His might He waits,
Brooding within the certitude of time,
To bring this lost forsaken valor
And the fierce faith undying
And the love quenchless
To flower among the hills to which we cleave,
To fruit upon the mountains whither we flee,
Never forsaking, never denying
His children and His children's children forever
Unto all generations of the faithful heart.

Source:  http://xroads.virginia.edu/~cap/lee/leemnt.html, accessed 24 Jan. 2014

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Remembering Lee

We would like to bring to your attention a good essay by columnist Paul Greenburg, written in honor of General Lee’s birthday.  While we have misgivings about Mr Greenburg’s assertion that the name ‘Lee’ is enough to unite Southerners as once it did (because of the ongoing vilification of anything associated with the Old South and because of the ‘acid bath of capitalism’, as one writer has put it, which destroys all tradition and memory, among other reasons), it is still very much worth one’s time to read.

It begins in this way:

Dear Countryman,

It was wholly a pleasure to get your reminder that Lee's Birthday is the 19th, though it is scarcely necessary in my case. I look forward to it every year, when I get to refresh my acquaintance with the General's memory. I am transported from the ever-changing present to the unchanging past -- from today's fluid superficiality to a contemplation of values that never change. Values like duty, which Lee called the sublimest word in the language.

There is a thrill of subversion to celebrating Robert E. Lee in this so-different time. It's like unveiling a Byzantine icon in some faceless museum of modern art. Remarkable thing, modernity. Especially its art, which can be the ideological equivalent of whiteout. It can take the blasphemous, the profane, the supposedly daring and disgusting, and convert it all into the utterly boring. How does it do that? Maybe it's the modern, now the postmodern, soon to be the post-postmodern, absence of continuity. If there's no shared past, no common standard, there's no way to desecrate it. The shocking becomes simply the meaningless.

It's no wonder that doing this annual Lee column has come to be a highlight of my year. For one day, the glitz and clatter of the unceasing 24/7 news cycle is shut out. I've spent more than one night into the early morning hours nursing a cup of coffee, fortified by a pile of Lee biographies and Civil War histories, thinking on the general, his life and character, and, most of all, about why he should still matter, why the old gentleman still speaks to us, not just in his words and deeds, but in his silences. They resound timeless, alone, grave yet the greatest comfort. No wonder they still draw us to him, like a deep river in a dry land.

 . . .

The rest may be read here (you must scroll down to find it):


(Image from Wikipedia)

Monday, January 20, 2014

‘ . . . large-scale, uncontrolled experiment . . .’

Dr Mercola posted a few months back an important article on the harmful effects of radiation from cell phones, Wi-Fi, etc.  Do what you can to protect your family, friends, and neighbors from the blessings of technological progress.

 . . . The fact is, we know that exposure to this ‘unnatural bath of radiation’ damages DNA and impairs natural cellular repair processes, a phenomenon that may lead to cancer. Yet we are proceeding with this large-scale, uncontrolled experiment anyway.

Because children are still developing, they have rapid cellular replication and growth rates that make them especially vulnerable to DNA damage. They also have a longer lifetime exposure to this new pervasive radiation than any previous generation.

As the expert panel stated, research shows that radiation from cell phones and Wi-Fi has already been shown to cause diminished reaction time in children, decreased motor function, increased distraction, hyperactivity and inability to focus on complex and long-term tasks.

In one controlled study, researchers from Yale University positioned a cell phone above a cage of pregnant mice. The phone was transmitting an uninterrupted active call for the entire 17 days of gestation.

When the exposed offspring were later tested, they showed signs of ADHD, and reduced transmissions in the prefrontal cortex of the brain.1 It's widely known that children, due to their thinner skulls, smaller brains, softer brain tissue and far more rapidly dividing cells, are far more susceptible to damage from cell phone use than adults. This study clearly showed brain patterns are altered, with life long repercussions from brief prenatal exposures to microwave radiation.  

Dr. Taylor indicated that there was a dose-response relationship found, and that disruption to the electrical signaling between neurons resulted in permanent changes in the way the brain is patterned that will carry forward into adulthood. The electrical signaling plays a major role in how the brain develops, which determines a lot of who we are as adults, he said, including “how we think and how we behave.”

 . . .

Friday, January 17, 2014

Tradition and Self-Denial


Why is tradition nearly dead in the Western World?  Because asceticism is nearly dead there.  But one must deny himself in order to preserve and to pass on to others what one has received as an inheritance - fighting against his passions which squander and guarding against innovations which destroy.  In response to a question on these subjects, Father Matthew Raphael Johnson sent some very thought-provoking answers.  With his permission, they are presented unedited below.  (If you would like to contact Fr Matthew, his contact information is on this web page: http://reasonradionetwork.com/programs/the-orthodox-nationalist.)

The question (14 Jan. 2014):

Father,

Is there an element of asceticism involved in preserving tradition?


. . .

His response (15 Jan. 2014):

Oh yes. There are many:

1. The very act of doing this means that you will be marginalized. You will lose friends. If the world is rewarding you, you're doing something wrong.

2. You are dedicating yourself to the very opposite of what the mass man considers "good." You, in most cases, will be alone.

3. Generally speaking, one preserving the tradition cannot participate in the state, social life, media or economic life. Now, this is impractical, so each of us has to figure a way to minimize involvement without becoming Grizzly Adams. Though there may be a time when we do build cabins in the woods.

4. Remember that asceticism, among other things, is a form of social protest. It was always considered as such. The two are linked intrinsically.

5. "Thinking for oneself" is a stupid slogan. Part of the reason is that true independent thought (not based on mass opinion) takes a huge amount of work. The fact that so many words have become vulgarized (e.g. hypocrite, irony, paranoid, schizo, symbol, "the state" and many others) means that we have to cleanse the very way we speak. Freedom is not given to us. We are born totally dependent. Freedom is the result of a lifetime of struggle.

The mass is dependent and determined. The very status of their souls is such that I cannot believe it survives their earthly life. At a maximum, their souls go to Sheol/Hades, the place of the dead in the Old Testament; a place of semi-consciousness that is neither Heaven nor Hell. Since many cannot be blamed for their enforced ignorance, damning them to Hell seems outrageous. Heaven is out of the question. But, given this, St. Gregory the Theologians speaks of "Limbo," which is just Hades in Latin, meaning "on the edge of." In our case, it is "on the edge" of Hell without being such.  
Come to think of it, "limbo" is another vulgarized word, as is "death."

MRJ

Because of the rejection of the ascetic principle by most among the Catholic and Protestant churches many years back, we once again invite any and all to explore the Orthodox Christian Faith. 


Without the firmness and humility Orthodoxy offers, there isn’t much hope for a restoration of the good traditions of the South or of any other country.

As well as we are able, then, let us deny ourselves, rejecting the anti-culture of the ‘mass man’.  Through the grace of God, let us hold to the Southern way of life, which is the manifestation of Christianity in the Southern context, and pass it on intact to future generations, not being daunted by the reproach of others - whether fellow Southerners of the ‘New South’ persuasion or unfriendly outsiders.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

True Christian Culture

England before the Norman Invasion had it.  If we in the South, the children of England, want it again, we must study their way of living.  And one of the integral parts of their society was the monastery.  Through the ascetic disciplines and within the liturgical life available at the monastery, monks and nuns develop the spiritual vision that gives birth to true culture. 

At the twin monasteries of Wearmouth and Jarrow in Northumbria, such a true culture developed.  Because of the energy and holiness of its founder, St Benedict Biscop, literature and other arts flourished there and deeply influenced other parts of England:  illuminated manuscripts of the Holy Scriptures, history, choral chanting, and so on. 

The South and the other parts of the American Empire are right now incapable of such a beautiful and sacred culture.  The idea of God’s presence in the material world has been rejected; the goal of life is no longer union with God through Christ but the satisfaction of the passions of the mind and flesh.  Our society reflects this - an obsession with politics, sports, violence, technology, hollow entertainment, money, etc.

Let us repent while there is still time.  St Benedict Biscop, St Bede, and the other holy men of Wearmouth-Jarrow stand ready as intercessors, to help us on our journey back to sacred living (a journey that likely will be fraught with difficulties).  But through their prayers and the Lord’s help, it is at least possible.

For more on the lives of St Benedict Biscop (whose blessed repose in the Lord was celebrated recently on 12 Jan.) and others from Wearmouth-Jarrow, and on the monastery itself, please visit these web sites:



Monday, January 13, 2014

The Church without a Protector

Without a Christian king to defend Her - a King Ælfred, Prince Vladimir, etc. - the Church is at the mercy of her enemies, just as she was in her infancy before the first Christian Emperor, Constantine the Great.

Father Andrew Phillips’s essay on the conflict between Orthodox Christian Greece and the EU, ‘The Fate of Christian Europe Hangs in the Balance in Greece’ (posted 30 Dec. 2013), offers yet more striking proof of this, and is something all Christians in the Western world (including the South) should pay careful attention to.  For we may soon come under the same persecution for our faith, so long as the godless, corporate-bankster Elite are in power in the Western nations, so long as we reject the monarchic principle in government for a national democracy, which weakens, not strengthens, the powers of good in a country.

 

Greece had the misfortune of being the first Orthodox country to be betrayed by its political elite and sold for a mess of pottage to the EU. Current events in Greece point to the fate that awaits all the other Orthodox countries, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania and others, which have already taken or still in their folly wish to take, that same path of apostasy. Thus:

Greece’s international creditors are setting it ever more anti-Christian ultimatums: it has been decreed by EU order that priests must no longer visit schools and groups of school pupils have been banned from attending services; Sundays will now be desecrated and businesses opened; priests have lost 20% of their paid leave; the number of ordinations allowed has been cut; the mention of religion has been removed from passports; a mosque must be built in Athens; certain Church properties may be privatised or else auctioned off by order of EU bureaucrats and their atheist quislings in the Greek government; laws on ‘free unions’ and others forbidding ‘insulting language’, the latter including calls to patriotism and quotations from the Gospels, are under discussion.

Little wonder that some bishops are preparing their flock to ‘to resist Antichrist’ in a new wave of persecution. Metropolitan Nicholas of Phtiotidis has spoken clearly of a possible popular revolt. Metropolitan Kosmas has said that if the law on same sex unions is passed, then the people must protest and become confessors of Christ. Like the Patriarchate of Antioch in Syria, today the Church of Greece has to stop compromising the Faith and stand up and be counted. The easy, consumerist times of previous years, when decadent practices were introduced from Western Europe and gradually everything was allowed – the Catholic calendar was introduced, the Liturgy was abbreviated, confession before communion was no longer obligatory, seating was introduced in all the churches, little girls were allowed to serve in the altar – are over. In reality the Church is not Consumerism, for the Church is the ascetic principle, not the rationalist and secularist one.

Greeks are finally waking up to the fact that their obsessive dream of ‘Europe’ has turned out to be a nightmare – just as their ignored monastic elders had forewarned. A wave of new barbarianism, this time of the liberal sort, is unfurling on Greece and massive immigration is destroying what remains of the local, Orthodox way of life and culture. Greece is entering the spiritual winter of Western Europe, as anti-EU Greek politicians are removed by ‘auditors’ from Brussels, Berlin and Paris. Only the Church of Greece remains independent from EU tyranny. Metropolitan Seraphim of Piraeus has threatened to excommunicate any politician who votes for laws which trample underfoot traditional moral standards. Many Church figures are finally asking that Greece leave the EU. It is no longer an economic struggle, but a spiritual, moral and cultural one.

Resistance now is vital for the future of European history. Given the apostasy of Protestants (and they are often in the forefront of the new decadence in any case) and the open abandonment of the Christian cause by most Roman Catholics (they see the EU has a pro-Cathoolic project and its flag as a Catholic banner), the struggle for Christ against those who are preparing the coming of Antichrist is now concentrated on the Orthodox world. Orthodox resistance to the Babylon of Brussels and its globalist ‘liberal’ project may be severely repressed, individual bishops and theologians may be ‘removed’, using contemporary technological controls. Other Local Orthodox Churches, already compromised by calendar change, should look carefully – they will be next to have to submit to the ‘New World Order’, that is, the restoration of the Old Pagan Order.

Resistance by Greece to the ethnocentric atheism of Western Europe is vital. Geopolitically, Greece is the key. If it falls, then the rest of the Balkans will also fall. And the EU tyrants know this. For if Greece is after all corageous and does choose freedom from the EU, then all the Balkans will also look north to Russia and the developing Eurasian Union, as the German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer has already pointed out and as was evident when bankrupt Cyprus almost chose Russia instead of the EU to come to its rescue.

Let us pray for courage in the Church of Greece.

Source:  http://www.events.orthodoxengland.org.uk/the-fate-of-christian-europe-hangs-in-the-balance-in-greece/, accessed 13 Jan. 2014.  Reprinted in full with the kind permission of the author.

Friday, January 10, 2014

A Time for Choosing

The choices we make each day are filled with great meaning, though we often do not realize it.  Each one determines whether one’s union with God through Christ grows more complete or undergoes destruction; whether one’s community likewise grows in the virtues or the vices - whether its economic, political, etc. institutions manifest the divine reality (which is the only reality) in which they are rooted or whether they manifest a satanic anti-reality.

Such things we must keep in mind when presented with the prospect of progress.  By applauding Google and the other leaders of transhumanism, of man joining with machine in order to open up a new and higher and better plane of existence, by adopting every new piece of technology they throw our way for the sake of convenience, we condemn ourselves to spiritual death, which will eventually lead to destruction of the physical world around us.  (And is this not what are we seeing now?)

Transhumanism or humble agrarian living; international corporations or family farms and stores; Christ or Antichrist; good or evil - every choice effects us and all the world around us.  We must at all costs reject things like this:

Dugan, who is Head of Advanced Technology at (Google-owned) Motorola, told an audience at the All Things D11 Conference that the company was working on a microchip inside a pill that users would swallow daily in order obtain the “superpower” of having their entire body act as a biological authentication system for cellphones, cars, doors and other devices.

“This pill has a small chip inside of it with a switch,” said Dugan. “It also has what amounts to an inside out potato battery. When you swallow it, the acids in your stomach serve as the electrolyte and that powers it up. And the switch goes on and off and creates an 18 bit ECG wide signal in your body and essentially your entire body becomes your authentication token.”

Dugan added that the chip had already been FDA approved and could be taken 30 times a day for someone’s entire life without effecting their health, a seemingly dubious claim.

Would you swallow a Google microchip every day simply to access your cellphone?

Privacy advocates will wince at the thought, especially given Dugan’s former role as head of DARPA, the Pentagon agency that many see as being at the top of the pyramid when it comes to the Big Brother technocracy.

Indeed, when host Walt Mossberg asked Dugan, “Does Google now know everything I do and everywhere I go because let’s face it….you’re from Google,” she responded by laughing and saying Mossberg should just swallow the pill.

In addition to the edible microchip, Motorola is also working on a wearable e-tattoo that could also read a user’s mind by detecting the unvocalized words in their throat.

Source:  Paul Joseph Watson, http://www.infowars.com/ex-darpa-head-wants-you-to-swallow-id-microchips/, accessed 10 Jan. 2014

And instead follow the advice of men like Father Matthew Raphael Johnson.  From his review of The Essential Agrarian Reader, edited by Norman Wirzba:

iii.

This is only the beginning however. Industrialism and urbanism are themselves saturated with moral and philosophical content. Consider this: pretend you’re in Walmart. What do you see? Shelves and shelves of items, thousands of choices, all at a relatively low price. One can shop in pleasant surroundings and can be helped in a minute by any staff member. One can take care of a week’s worth of shopping in one store, at one time. Things that decades ago were luxuries for the rich are now easily obtainable by any middling citizen of America. Apparently, capitalism has won, and has provided even the poorest in America with the possibility of a lifetime of labor-saving devices, entertainment and cheap food. Immanuel Kant would call this a “phenomenon.” The problem is that behind a phenomenon is a noumenon, that is, the basis from which the sense impressions are generated. Sense impressions do not exist by themselves, generated out of nowhere, but derive from something, something, frankly, more real than the sense impression itself. I’m going a bit beyond what Kant would agree with, but one can say that the purpose of philosophical inquiry (and I use this broadly) is to discover, not merely this coherence of sense impressions, but rather the origin of the impression itself.

Starting from there, the shadows on the Walmart cave are seen as just that. One can now turn around to see who is castig those shadows, and might even be able to converse with the caster and see what motivated him in so doing. What does Walmart look like then?

As the colorful items on the shelf begin to melt away in the light of truly critical inquiry, as the generic muzak fades, one sees the essence of modern capitalism. One sees the army of security personnel watching thousands of TV screens which monitor and document every move of every shopper. One sees the “walkers,” or spies hired by management to follow workers around, making sure they are working to full capacity. One sees corporate board room meetings where the image of Walmart is discussed. One sees the offices of an ad agency, where the image of corporate America is created and broadcast to the world. One sees thousands of minimum wage workers toiling at the megafarms who supply Walmart with its cheap food. One sees well dressed lobbyists visiting the offices of Senators, Congressmen and staff members, arguing the merits of maintaining the privileges of megafarms and corporate America in general. One sees Walmart managers, who work on average 75 hours a week, monitored minute by minute by the array of cameras whose images are beamed throughout the corporate infrastructure of Sam’s empire.

In other words, what is being described is that the glittering display of cheap items is part of the realm of unreality. It is an alchemically induced illusion, where the images of the television, the manipulations of ad and PR agencies, and even the expectations of post-modern shoppers conspire to transmit a hologram, that of a peaceful, prosperous America, able to have cheap food and many gadgets promising one convenience or another, without ever really having to pay the bills in terms of resource depletion, suppression of wages and unionization, the destruction of the family farm and local retail stores, and the wars necessary to maintain a cheap supply of oil (among other things) to keep the production machine rolling. It is in this transmission of specifically crafted images that finally reaches the telos of ancient gnosis or the alchemical processing of entire populations to reflect the perspectival point of view of the ruling classes. In the ancient world of the Near East, the banks, or the center of the economy, were the temples, overseen by a god, or a fetishization of some social or natural force. The public veneration of this totem was a crude cover for the centralized control of the moneyed powers. The central reason why the Greek oligarchy put Socrates to death was that by arguing that the fetishized gods were a hoax, he was causing a run on the banks. The power of finance, from Nimrod to Hyde Park, has been cloaked in mystification, and this mystification, in the esoteria of the esoteria of the Freemasons, is the cover for oligarchical rule, the rule of matter over spirit, and the dogmatic alchemists mantra that matter is the cause of spirit and the cause of life, the very ontological basis of magick.

iv.

I’ve gone slightly afield. The purpose of this set of essays is to lay out a theoretical and practical ground for the re-emergence of the family farm, for a healthy provincialism expressed in a true stewardship for the land and local resources, and, importantly, a reorienting of priorities from the glittering hallucination of the Walmart shelf to the very health and well being of the land and of the local community. The essays presented here do that, and they do it well.

Agrarianism is not just about the protection of the land and the family farm. It would be a worthy endeavor if it were just that, but it is more. Agrarianism is a mindset. It is a mindset that prefers the quiet beauty of a sunset through the mountains over the Walmart shelf. It is a mindset that prefers the harvest festival to the television. It is a mindset that prefers true community, that is, a foundation of social life based on what one has in common, a close identity of interests and self-definitions, to the atomization of post-modern consumerism. It is a mindset that prefers reality to the image.

These are not just romantic slogans. Of course, there is nothing wrong with romance, for it is these quite natural connections to the land, to natural beauty, to a local landscape which, again quite naturally, conjures up feelings of wonder, enjoyment and belonging. Romance is the engine which drives agrarianism–not some feminine desire for the symbolic over the actual–but rather, a true sense of connection, the sense described by Tolstoy in his famous The Cossacks, a sense of love and integration rather than alienation, an alienation that comes from living in a world of images, images generated by elite rulers in secret settings for purposes even economists have yet to fathom. In agrarianism, the arrogance of Chekov’s anti-hero is replaced by the humility of the farmer who is intimately knowledgeable of his own limits, the limits of nature, and the limits of the locality. The artificially isolated consumer of the post-modern McEmpire is told that he lives in a world without limits, but the images that manifest that message are the creation of a massive infrastructure of manipulation, corporate greed and ideological brainwashing; none of it is actually real.

AntiChrist will appear in much the same manner as Cargill–he will tell a gullible world that he can feed all men, that he ill solve all ideological problems, end nationalism (of course), war and greed, if and only if they will bow down to him. The religions of the world will be all too quick to bow, a few of the ascetics will refuse, and will be called romantic obscurantists for so doing. May God grant that we be so obscurantist.


True progress, spiritual progress, is obtained through labors, deprivations, and abstinences of various kinds.  A highly mechanized society of ease and comfort - the things associated with progress today (which is a false progress) - are inimical to it.  Our choices will lead us toward one or the other.  May the Lord grant us wisdom.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Wisdom from an African Saint

To confound the eugenicist Neopuritan Elite who believe that nothing good can come from Africa save land, cheap labor, and other resources for their anti-Christian civilization, here are some very wise and valuable sayings of St Syncletike of Egypt (4th century A. D.):

- "In the beginning there is struggle and a lot of work for those who come near to God. But after that there is indescribable joy. It is just like building a fire: at first it is smoky and your eyes water, but later you get the desired result. Thus we ought to light the divine fire in ourselves with tears and effort."

- "Those who put out to sea at first sailed with a favourable wind; then the sails spread, but later the wind becomes adverse. Then the ship is tossed by the waves and is no longer controlled by the rudder. But when in a little while there is calm, and the tempest dies down, then the ship sails on again. So it is with us, when we are driven by the spirits who are against us; we hold to the cross as our sail and so we can set a safe course."

- "There is an asceticism which is determined by the enemy and his disciples practice it. So how are we to distinguish between the divine and royal asceticism and the demonic tyranny? Clearly through its quality of balance."

- "It is dangerous for anyone to teach who has not first been trained in the practical life. For if someone who owns a ruined house receives guests there, he does them harm because of the dilapidation of his dwelling. It is the same in the case of someone who has not first built an interior dwelling; he causes loss to those who come. By words one may convert them to salvation, but by evil behaviour, one injures them."

- "I think that for those living in community obedience is a greater virtue than chastity, however perfect. Chastity carries within it the danger of pride, but obedience has within it the promise of humility."

- Someone asked Amma Syncletike of blessed memory, "Is absolute poverty perfect goodness?" She replied, "It is a great good for those capable of it; even those who are not capable of it find rest for their souls in it though it causes them anxiety. As tough cloth is laundered pure white by stretched and trampled underfoot, so a tough soul is stretched by freely accepting poverty."

- "Choose the meekness of Moses and you will find your heart which is a rock changed into a spring of water."

- "Just as a treasure that is exposed loses its value, so a virtue which is known vanishes; just as wax melts when it is near fire, so the soul is destroyed by praise and loses all the results of its labour."

- "Just as one cannot build a ship unless one has some nails, so it is impossible to be saved without humility."


From this it should be obvious that mankind has backslidden quite a bit from the time of St Syncletike and the blossoming of monasticism, despite our much praised technological advances, which in many cases are only serving to enslave us to the godless Elite and drive us further from God.

‘Backward Africa’ can actually teach us quite a bit if we will take the time to listen to her.  To that end, we hope you all will read the short life of St Syncletike, available at the path posted just above. 

It begins, ‘Our holy mother Syncletike was born at Alexandria in the course of the fourth century to rich and devout parents, who came originally from Macedonia. From her youth, she had been seen as an excellent match on account of her great beauty, intelligence and virtues, and she had many suitors; but she remained deaf and blind to every worldly attraction, for she aspired only to spiritual marriage to Christ, the heavenly Bridegroom. Bringing her flesh into subjection by fasting and austerities of every kind, she constantly gathered her spirit in the depths of her heart and cried out night and day: "My Beloved is mine, and I am His" (Song of Songs 2:16). . . .’

Monday, January 6, 2014

Northern Racism

While the South hasn’t got a spotless record on race, all too often viewing the black man as inferior to the white man, she nevertheless has recognized him as a brother, a fellow descendant of the first Adam and one capable of sharing in the Grace of God through Christ, the second Adam.  Thus in her better days she has tried to help him to reach maturity to the best of her misguided ability.

The North, on the other hand, has more often than not harbored a disgust of the black man, viewing him as something less than human.  In the Reverend Robert Lewis Dabney’s day, the attitude was expressed thusly by Northerners (the Northern view being denoted as ‘Black Republicanism’ by Rev Dabney):

In a word, Black Republicanism always means, that the African shall not exist at all on American soil. The uniform shibboleth of the party was the assertion, that this continent must belong exclusively to the white race. The proposal universally made by its demagogues to the agrarian hordes whom they deceived, was not: " Let us overthrow the institutions of the South, in order that you may share its industry with free negro competitors;" but, "Let us overthrow the institutions of the South, in order that you may exclude the negro from its industry, and take his place." If they were pointed to the wretched and waning caste of free blacks in the North, as proof that this race cannot thrive in competition with the whites, without the protection of domestic slavery, and asked what wag to be the destiny of the millions of Africans, when their policy of freesoil was everywhere established; the usual answer was a sardonic shrug, and the sneering declaration, that this was no concern of theirs. Others, more candid, pointed for answer, to the fate of the Indian tribes, who have wasted to nothing before the greater energies and crimes of the white race; and coolly said, that the Africans, deprived of the fostering shield of that southern slavery, under which they were now thriving so happily, must tend to extinction, under the pressure of their own miseries and degradation; and then the whole Union would be free, prosperous, and glorious, (?) belonging to the white man alone. Such was the hideous meaning of Black Republicanism, to oppress and enslave the humane master, in order to exterminate the contented and comfortable servant! (Dabney, Life and Campaigns of Lieut. Gen. T.J. (Stonewall) Jackson, Sprinkle, 1983 [1866], pgs. 164-5.  See Chapter V, ‘Secession’, available for free download here:  https://www.dropbox.com/sh/7lvsb1aafgtuw4x/_YtWxzRrgD/Books%20by%20Chapter/Life%20and%20Campaigns%20of%20Thos.%20J%20Jackson)

In the early 20th century this morphed into advocating abortion for blacks and others deemed unfit to live (including ‘antisocial whites of the South’):

At a March 1925 international birth control gathering in New York City, a speaker warned of the menace posed by the "black" and "yellow" peril. The man was not a Nazi or Klansman; he was Dr. S. Adolphus Knopf, a member of Margaret Sanger's American Birth Control League (ABCL), which along with other groups eventually became known as Planned Parenthood.

Sanger's other colleagues included avowed and sophisticated racists. One, Lothrop Stoddard, was a Harvard graduate and the author of The Rising Tide of Color against White Supremacy. Stoddard was something of a Nazi enthusiast who described the eugenic practices of the Third Reich as "scientific" and "humanitarian." And Dr. Harry Laughlin, another Sanger associate and board member for her group, spoke of purifying America's human "breeding stock" and purging America's "bad strains." These "strains" included the "shiftless, ignorant, and worthless class of antisocial whites of the South."


The abuse against blacks and others continued throughout the 20th century, abuse which included secret syphilis studies and harmful vaccines:


Sadly, some Southerners joined in this evil behavior:


But let it be known where it got its start:

Birth Control Leagues had already been formed in a number of larger American cities between 1916 and 1919 due to Sanger's lecture tours and the publication of the Birth Control Review. By 1924, the American Birth Control League had 27,500 members, with ten branches maintained in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Colorado, and British Columbia.


In all this, we see once more the consequences of the Pilgrim-Puritan-Yankee pride in considering themselves the Chosen Ones of God, appointed by Him to usher in a new era of righteousness and progress.  But more than this, it is a call for white Southerners to finally fulfil their duty toward their black brothers and sisters, a task that was interrupted by the War of Northern Aggression; to protect them from Yankee abuses; to help them reach their full potential as children of God, not through a government program or a scientific system, but through personal acts of love - the love of the Most Holy Trinity poured out upon us through His Orthodox Church - and through the sacraments and the teachings and lives of the saints.

So, then, do not be confused about where the real locus of racial hatred resides in this Union, and look ye askance at the Puritanism, whether religious or secular, of New England, which has ravaged nearly every state in the Union, and now many nations of the world.