I hadn’t realized it until just recently, but Novaseeker over at Veritas Lounge returned to blogging. He had let his blog lapse for a while, but restored it and has written two posts that warrant further analysis and discussion. They both revolve around a common theme, namely, the nature of the struggle that we face now here in the West.
The first post is called Lords of the New Church. In it he begins by discussing the call by one Sandra Korn for “Academic Justice” inside of Academia, rather than “Academic Freedom.” As he explains:
What we see here is nothing less than the development of a new orthodoxy, together with the enforcement mechanisms which go along with any system of orthodox belief.
This much I think has been obvious to most folks for quite some time, but he goes further.:
Clearly this is the enforcement of a moral orthodoxy — or, rather, an enforced set of rules about permitted academic investigation or engagement which are in turn based on a preconceived moral orthodoxy. It’s quite telling that the ultimate justification, the “punch line” if you will, is that of having “the moral upper hand”. This is the ultimate “moral” (in reality, ideological) basis which justifies the accepted orthodoxy of one’s actions, and which trumps the academic freedom of any dissenters from such “consensus” orthodoxy. Of course, while being both banal and unsurprising, it is nevertheless ironic (and an irony that appears completely lost on most of the academy, alas) that a group which has claimed inherited solidarity with Galileo in the face of his persecution for articulating ideas which went against the orthodoxy of his day has now completely turned around, and essentially become its own perceived caricature of what it has despised — namely fulfilling to a tee the academy’s caricature of the Christian church as an ideologically-based enforcer of an orthodoxy of ideas, based on a set of moral principles held in consensus by its own appointed few. What we are witnessing is nothing less than the “coming out party” of a new church — complete with a priesthood, monasteries and an emergent, and zealously enforced, orthodoxy.
I completely agree with Novaseeker’s assessment here. In fact, I have made a similar argument myself in my post The Three Estates. That post described how the US is slowly drifting towards a neo-feudal order, one where there are three major “castes”, or “estates.” This mirrors how much of Europe looking from the Dark Ages all the way through to the Renaissance. As I explained, the nature of the system was like this:
- The first caste defined the moral order
- The second exercised political and economic control, through its monopoly on force
- The third kept the system running
The old estates were broken long ago- the church was/is largely powerless, and the nobility had been broken and disappeared. However, developments in our society had lead to the emergence of a new social order that looked a lot like the old one. The Third Estate is still much as it always was, but the Second Estate is now composed of politicians, activists, lobbyists and bureaucrats who exercise most of the political power in the present system. As for the First Estate, here is what I explained:
The cultural elites of the West, located in the Media, Academia and the overall “Education Establishment”, have begun to take on the role of the First Estate. Like the clergy in Medieval times, they are largely in a position to define the moral order for overall society. The amount of influence they now wield dwarfs anything that their opponents can muster. For some time the media, although it was just the “press” back then, was referred to as the Fourth Estate. This is because they were outside of the overall power structure as it existed back then, but still wielded influence (and through it power). No longer. Now the media is very much integrated in the social order. They are joined in this by a powerful Educational Establishment, which molds the minds of citizens starting in kindergarten (or even sooner) all the way through post-graduate education. It is this conglomeration of influence wielders who determine what is, and isn’t, acceptable in society. For an idea of what that means, see here. Under the present system Transgress those boundaries and at best you find yourself a social pariah, with fines and imprisonment possibilities for greater infractions of the social order.
All of this has been apparent for some time to those of us who have actually been paying attention to what is going on. What is different now, as Novaseeker explains, is that they aren’t pretending anymore:
What is new, however, is the brazenness of it all. That approach and tone comes when people generally feel invulnerable to their critics. The ideological left (which is what the academy is – it isn’t a centrist, pragmatic left, it’s generally an out-there, radical, ideological left) is basically doing a socio-political-cultural celebratory dance. Virtually all of their goals have either been achieved or are well within reach. They know this. Hegemony is theirs – at least for the foreseeable future. So, this gives them the courage simply to state explicitly things that previously everyone familiar with the academy tacitly knew, but didn’t expressly say – it’s the most brazen stage of the entire development by which the academy has become monolithic in outlook while at the same time hugely increasing its influence over the state and the society at large.
He goes even further in explaining the situation, and I strongly recommend everyone to read the whole post (and its follow-up).
His second post is called The Struggle is Spiritual. It begins where he left off in his previous post:
This is a religious fight, from start to finish. It’s best that we see it that way, that we may approach it properly and with the most appropriate tools.
I’m not going to quote nearly so much from his second post, as you really have to read the whole thing to understand it properly. What I will quote from is his opening:
I have gradually come to the conclusion that the current “struggles” we face concerning the “culture” — whether we are discussing the impact of the sexual revolution, the decline of religion in the public square, the increase of all kinds of license, the coarsening of society, the decline of family life, etc. — are primarily not cultural struggles at all. And neither are they political struggles, although certain aspects of these elements have been aided and abetted by political action and legislation.
By contrast, it strikes me that the cultural and political elements we are seeing are merely manifestations of a broader spiritual struggle — a larger element which underlies these other manifestations, and unites them into a larger, cohesive, and more dangerous, whole.
I owe Novaseeker a debt of gratitude for this part. While I had always sort of known this, in the sense that I had all of the pieces in my mind, I hadn’t put them together. When assembled, they clued me in to the fact that the First Estate, as I had envisioned it, was not merely composed of cultural elites, but spiritual ones. In fact, the media’s influence is as much spiritual as it is cultural, as they help mold and define what is good, and what isn’t. The same applies to Academia. My suspicion is that the lack of clarity over this is deliberate- a product of the machinations of the new First Estate who want to keep everyone else in the dark about what is really going on. They have created distinctions between culture and spirituality that exist only in our minds- they are no more real than the false deity that has been constructed by this new First Estate over the last few decades to centuries.
What is going on now is nothing more, and nothing less, than a war for the Soul of Western Civilization. A campaign is underway to remove the last (overt) traces of Christianity from what used to be known as Christendom, or what we more commonly refer to now as Western Civilization. In fact, campaign might be too generous. Because by all appearances the adversary has already all but won this war, and is in the process of securing its victory.
The question before us is this: What now? What shall we do? How shall we respond?
Will we keep fighting, even though we cannot win (by ourselves, at least)? While it is doubtful that we will be fed to lions or suffer the other forms of torture and execution that the first martyrs faced, suffering is clearly ahead. Loss of property is assured. As is loss of freedom. Perhaps scarier, loss of family- no doubt those with children will see them taken away and sent to who knows where.
Or do we instead “flee to the catacombs”? Do we hide away in small communities and isolate ourselves from general society? Perhaps we can literally flee to the mountains or otherwise sparsely inhabited regions in order to escape the coming persecution. Because that is coming, as surely as night follows day. The new First Estate cannot tolerate the presence of another source of moral authority, or at least, one which is opposed to it.
Or will we surrender? Do we given in, and compromise our faith that we might live in peace? Most likely Christians will still be allowed to practice their “faith” if they simply drop those parts which offend the morality and sensibility of the new moral order. We will be allowed to worship our God all we want, so long as we also worship theirs as well. It won’t be that difficult either, I imagine, besides giving lip service to their “good”, and saying the right things and hating the right things.
Perhaps these are the end times, and the Day of Judgment will soon be upon us. Or maybe this is just another period of brief darkness that will pass in time. Either way, we cannot tell beforehand. The only thing that we know for certain is the choice we have to make. Fight, flee or surrender?