Category Archives: Churchianity

Splitting Eros Leads To Disaster

One of Dalrock’s recent posts examines the consequences of the elevation of romantic love to a moral force:

The simple fact is the moment you attribute moral value to romantic love you are creating a rival to biblical sexual morality.  In biblical sexual morality it is marriage that creates a moral space for sex and romantic love (with romantic love not separated from sexual passion).  We have overturned God’s order here, and are now claiming that romantic love is the moral space for marriage and sex.  This is deceptively subtle, and at the same time demolishes the moral meaning of marriage.

Passionless duty sex was for marriage, and passion was for adultery.  Courtly love built upon this idea with a twist.  It added a new concept of romantic love, separating out the emotional aspect of sexual passion.  This newly separated concept of romantic love was worshiped and seen as sanctifying.  CS Lewis summed up the concept of courtly love as (emphasis mine):

“The sentiment, of course, is love, but love of a highly specialized sort, whose characteristics may be enumerated as Humility, Courtesy, Adultery, and the Religion of Love.”

What Dalrock is examining here is a situation where Eros has been split in two. As a reminder/refresher, the ancient Greeks believed in several different concepts of  “love.” The three principal loves were:

  • Eros- sensual love associated with the body
  • Philos- love in the form of friendship that is associated with the soul
  • Agapos- the self-sacrificing love that comes from God and is thus associated with the Spirit

Now, Eros is a bodily love. However, emotions are as much of the body as the actual “rubbing together of bodyparts.” Which is my way of saying that Eros properly contains both Romance as well as the actual physical acts of intercourse. Passion and Romance go hand in hand, if you will. Dalrock is making a mistake by calling it “Romantic love.” It is really just the emotional aspect of the love we know as Eros. It is not something separate.

What has unfortunately been going on for centuries now is an attempt to split Eros up into a “dirty” part, sex, and a “pure” part, “romance.” However, no matter how many games you play with this, it cannot be done. Eros encompasses both. Any attempt to separate the two is inherently insane. We should expect that craziness will follow from it. Thus, to me it is no surprise that efforts to separate Eros have helped “break” marriage in the west. We have gone against God’s plan for human beings- disaster is to be expected.

God created Man as a union of body, soul and spirit. Marriage, as an institution/sacrament coming from God, relies on a healthy state of that union. If they are unhealthy, or there is discord, then marriage will suffer accordingly. Marriage encompasses each of these loves, because marriage affects and is affected by all parts of that union. Trying to remove the physical component of Eros from marriage effectively breaks that unity and creates disorder in that man or woman- and thereby brings disorder into the marriage. It affects both husband and wife because in marriage the two become one.

Remember, Man was made for marriage. And by marriage I mean what God intends by marriage. Trying to fit man into anything other than what God intended is like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. It doesn’t work. Alas, we are seeing the proof of that all around us in the West right now.

Update: I should make it clear that the mistake that I think Dalrock was mistaking was calling it “Romantic Love.” I don’t think he failed to grasp the other parts of my post. One of his older posts in fact notes that courtly love is always sexual.

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Filed under Attraction, Blue Pill, Christianity, Churchianity, Desire, Marriage, Moral Agency, Pair Bonding, Red Pill, Sex, Sexual Strategies, Sin, State of Nature, Temptation, The Church

Masculine Monday- Sympathy And Understanding

[Men only]

One of the hurdles that men face today in navigating the Marriage Marketplace is the widespread ignorance of most people where the MMP is concerned. For a variety of reasons most of the people that a man interacts with don’t have a clue how the MMP really works. This applies as much to married men as to men seeking to marry. Most people just don’t get it.

Which drives me to the subject of this post- men shouldn’t expect much in the way of understanding from those around them re: the MMP. In fact, the only ones who might understand are men in the same position (or who recently occupied it). I don’t know about most of my readers, but I find this to be a terribly frustrating matter. On more than one occasion I have been asked why I’m not married yet. And no matter how much or well I explain it, I can see in people’s eyes that they don’t understand. I find this quite isolating at times- it creates a climate of being cut off and without aid.

Now, at this point I should mention that one of Rollo‘s little “laws” is that women are ultimately incapable of understanding the male experience. In this area I agree- the disconnect in experience and thought patterns means that women just can’t “get” what it is like to be a man. My advice is to not even try to go into detailed explanations with women when it comes to this field. You will be wasting your time.

At the same time, while understanding isn’t possible from women, and from most men too (they are too bound up in their “Blue Pill” worldview), sympathy is still possible. Even those who don’t understand why your life is the way it is can still be sympathetic. Personally speaking, I don’t find that nearly as much of a relief as understanding. But it is something, at least. So if you do find those who are sympathetic, appreciate that sympathy for what it is- the best connection you can hope to make with most people you encounter, even the good ones.

I write all of this to perhaps save some man out there the frustration that comes from trying to explain to someone what they cannot hope to understand. Accept that you will never impart that understanding, and the connection that comes with it. Take what sympathy that you can get, and keep moving forward. Such is the burden of being a man in this day and age.

 

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Filed under Blue Pill, Churchianity, Marriage Market Place, Masculinity, Men, Red Pill, Sexual Market Place

You Reap What You Don’t Sow

[Alternate title: Shaking Yourself Apart]

So I caught this in the news recently: One of the Shakers’ last three members died Monday. The storied sect is verging on extinction. An excerpt:

One of the last three remaining members of the dwindling Shaker sect died Monday.

Sister Frances Carr died at the Shaker community at Sabbathday Lake in New Gloucester, Maine, “after a brief battle with cancer,” according to a statement on the community’s website.

It continued, “The end came swiftly and with dignity surrounded by the community and her nieces.” Carr was 89.

Carr was a member of the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearance, a Christian group formed in 1747 in Manchester, England. They earned the name the Shakers when critics began calling them “Shaking Quakers” because of “their ecstatic and violent bodily agitation in worship,” according to Sabbathday Lake’s website. The Shakers eventually abandoned this particular dancing-style worship, but the congregation adopted the term, according to the Associated Press.

I remember reading about this particular sect years ago. I am not at all surprised the group is nearly extinct. Here are some of their core beliefs:

The Shakers practice celibacy, in addition to pacifism, equality of the sexes and communal ownership of property.

Their extinction is sort of a given considering their beliefs. Of course, the surviving members think otherwise, but hey, why wouldn’t they? Another point from the article:

Although it may sound like an old-fashioned religious sect by today’s standards, at one time the Shakers were considered progressive. As PBS noted, “Seventy-five years before the emancipation of the slaves and 150 years before women began voting in America, the Shakers were practicing social, sexual, economic, and spiritual equality for all members.”

We can see in the Shakers the end result of “Progressive Christianity” – extinction. This group just happened to (almost) get there a lot faster given their embrace of total celibacy. Other sects will come to the same fate as well, as sooner or later their deviancy will catch up with them.

 

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Filed under Christianity, Churchianity, Civilization, Marriage, Parenting, The Church, Tradition

The Blind Spot

My recent post Something Else led to some excellent comments by my readers. Two subjects were raised there that I think should be readdressed in a separate post- this one.

The first is the role of the Church in all of this. Deti left a comment on the subject, and here is part of it:

Zippy Catholic addressed this a while back, saying that “The Church is not your daddy”. The Church’s only job is to administer the Sacraments to the faithful and provide for education and training up in the faith. That’s it. It’s not to help socialize men, provide vocations for them, or help them find wives. So I think you’ll have to convince the Zippys of the world that the church should take up the banner of providing outlets to channel what is essentially untapped and unreleased sexual energy. You have to convince folks like Zippy that helping guys do things other than get laid is something the church should and must do.

He then linked to Zippy’s post on the subject. I would like to make a couple of points here.

First, when I speak of the Church I don’t mean only ordained clergy and the official hierarchy of the Church. I mean the whole body of Christ. Yes, I think the clergy has a role to play in all of this, but they shouldn’t have to shoulder the burden alone.

Second, the Church has historically done more than just administer sacraments and teach/train. From the beginning the Church was helping to take care of its members. The first deacons, Stephen the First Martyr among them, were ordained in order for them to help minister to the needs of the faithful. St. Paul was very active in helping ensure charitable relief. At the same time there is quite a difference between providing food to someone on one hand, and ensuring a vocation on the other.

This brings me to the second comment I want to cover, by feeriker:

This is a blind spot that the Body of Christ on Earth is never going to even acknowledge, let alone address. To do so would lead it to some very unpleasant places and demand some serious introspection, which in turn would lead to an obvious call to re-evaluate doctrine and practice in a variety of areas. Not gonna happen, or if it finally ever does when all [e]lse fails, it will be too little too late.

I disagree with feeriker here on a couple of points.

First, while the Church might not be acknowledging it now, it did in the past. Many of the Fathers of the Church argued against the criminalization of prostitution. While they called it out for the sin that it was, they recognized at the same time the problem of untapped male sexual energy. They knew the problems that would result if men didn’t have an outlet. Hence why prostitution was legal in so many Christian nations (until Progressivism had its way).

Second, the problem right now is not doctrine (at least for Catholic and Orthodox Christians). Rather, the problem is practice. What should be taught is not taught, and what should be encouraged is not encouraged, and what should be exhorted is not exhorted.

Now, I agree with feeriker that some serious introspection is required. And sadly, I agree with him that when it does happen, it will be mostly in the too little, too late scenario. Which I would argue is today.

Now, to try and put this all together…

It is not the responsibility of Church leadership to ensure that everyone is able to fulfill their vocation. Priests aren’t matchmakers (and neither are Deacons or Bishops). That is not only impossible to guarantee, but also outside its sphere of responsibility. Instead of being charged with ensuring “fair outcomes”, the Church hierarchy and clergy is charged with teaching and exhorting those things which are necessary to give everyone a fighting chance. Some examples:

  • Teach and exhort the importance of young marriage
  • Teach and exhort the importance of parents and family helping their children/relatives marry
  • Teach and exhort an anti-materialist/consumerist mindset
  • Teach and exhort parishioners that helping their brothers and sister in Christ to marry is charitable

The laity isn’t responsible for fair outcomes either. However, they are responsible for teaching their children these things as well. In addition, while not a duty to specifically help their fellow Christians marry, it is charitable to help them find their vocation, and thus the right thing to do. This can and should go beyond helping individual Christians to include group and community actions as well.

I should note that plenty of Churches have various ministries which help those in need. There is no reason why lay members of the Church cannot help minister in this area as well. Perhaps not directly as a matchmaker, but in other, more indirect ways. And of course, even if there are matchmakers, they will be limited by the pool of those seeking marriage. So other avenues need to be available. Reader MK mentioned lay orders, and I think that is one path that has a lot of merit.

In summary, there is a lot that can and should be done in this regard. Clergy and laity all have a role to play. Everyone can contribute. But such contributions aren’t taking place and that is a tragedy which will continue to harm many faithful men for a long time to come.

 

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Filed under Blue Pill, Christianity, Churchianity, Marriage, Marriage Market Place, Masculinity, Men, Red Pill, Sex, Sexual Market Place, The Church

Something Else

Today’s post is a Masculine Monday post. Male commenters only, please. Also, somewhat stream of consciousness as well.

Rollo has a new post up titled “The Something Else.”

If you want to sum up Rollo’s post, it would be in this simple phrase:

If it wasn’t X-Box it would be something else.

The reality of male/female relations these days is driving more and more men to seek out “something else” to occupy their life.

For some it is escapism- merely an attempt to drone out the overwhelming meaninglessness they feel marks their lives.Whether it is porn or video games or something else, they want to blur out reality. There is no drive for something more, something greater. Merely something to distract.

For others it is a genuine desire to find something of meaning and value. To obtain a purpose for life. Some Red Pill sites call this “your mission.” As a Catholic, I recognize that the word they are searching for is vocation. These men are looking for a calling that they can hold fast to and make their own.

Unfortunately, for many the vocation that most will be called to, marriage, seems mostly out of grasp. And for most probably will be (if they are smart, anyways). The problem, from the Church’s perspective, is that there is nothing in place to really help men who find themselves so frustrated. They will instinctively search of that “something” to replace their vocation, but how much is really there for them? Just among Catholics many will not be called to be priests, or monks (in the traditional sense).

It seems to me that the Church needs to adapt to the change in the Marriage Marketplace. There needs to be something for all the young men who will not be able to marry in the years ahead. And probably something as well for the men who find themselves divorced. I’m talking more than some support group. Rather, something more akin to a community, a brotherhood. Something that provides support and doesn’t leave all these men discrete individuals adrift in the modern world.

I suppose some sort of urban monastery might be in order. Not a place for contemplatives, but a communal home where everyone is a “roomie” and can uplift and support his fellow men. I invite my readers to offer their thoughts on the matter. All the same, I am sure that something is needed to help devout men find that something. Many men are drifting away from the faith, and given the cold shoulder the Church is basically giving them these days, it is hard to blame them. Furthermore, creating a place for men without a home might help secular men who are also adrift in the same ocean.

Men are looking for something else, and the Church needs to help them find it.

 

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Filed under Christianity, Churchianity, Courtship, Femininity, Feminism, Fitness Test, Hypergamy, Marriage, Marriage Market Place, Masculinity, Men, Red Pill, Serial Monogamy, Sex, Sexual Market Place, Sexual Strategies, The Church, Women

Avoiding Sacrifice

Deep Strength has a new post up wherein he argues that Women hate suffering:

I was trying to think of ways to make the this post into something elaborate, but the title really just explains itself. Women hate suffering, and by extension women don’t handle suffering well.

Examples:

  • Divorce rate is 70% women initiated. Because women are unhappy.

  • Husbands persist through contentious and shrewish wives in marriage taking on more responsibilities (e.g. choreplay, childcare), while women can’t handle being unhappy.

  • Pastors and wives with unbelieving husbands will go out of their way to make up stuff like “intelligent submission” so they don’t have to submit. Then the sad part is when “intelligent submission” is defended instead of admitting it is being used to rebel against husbands and against the Scriptures.

  • Christian men and husbands would rather cave to women when they are unhappy rather than to tell them it is a normal part of the Christian walk. “All who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” 2:Timothy 3:12. Suffering is normal for Christians. We do a lot of things in this life that we don’t want to because they should be done.

  • Women are coddled by society, praised and pushed for college and credentialism. Men are put down and no on cares about them. When women fail they are helped as much as possible, especially by white knights. When men fail no one really cares that they are suffering except perhaps their parents.

I agree with a lot of what Deep Strength has to say in his post. Women are indeed coddled- more than men, anyways. There are plenty of women who aren’t coddled out there, of course. Men cave all-the-time (hence “mancaves”). And so on and so forth.

At the same time, I think he is a bit off when he says that women hate suffering. In fact I have written a post on this subject before. A few snippets from that post:

You see, healthy women “like” suffering.

I put quotations around like because it is not a conscious desire, but an unconscious one. Something deep down inside them recognizes that a certain amount of suffering is to be expected, is natural even. As Ace alludes to, this draws from Genesis[.]

Women expect suffering in their life- it is the natural thing. [Think about the vast majority of human history- filled with suffering for pretty much everyone.] When women are too comfortable, when suffering is absent from their life, then it sends a message to their unconscious mind that something is wrong, that what they are living is an unnatural life. That message of unnaturalness will only be repeated over the years as they grow up. They will know, somewhere deep down inside, that something is wrong. Unfortunately, because this is unconscious, they won’t know what it is, exactly, that is wrong.

This will, naturally enough, lead them to feel miserable. The misery is only made worse because they won’t understand it. It will gnaw on their mind incessantly, like an itch you can’t quite reach.

I suspect that part of the reason that women act so crazy in the west today is because of this. Using that itch analogy I just mentioned- women act crazy because they are trying to scratch that itch. Only they don’t quite know how- so they do so in extreme ways. Again, deep down inside they know they should be suffering, so they go out and make themselves suffer (without every truly understanding that is what they are doing).

I think a better word, one that fits what Deep Strength is driving towards, is sacrifice. Women hate sacrifice. They don’t want to have to sacrifice anything to get what they want. A few examples:

  • They say they want a family, but they don’t want to sacrifice their youth, and an education and/or career, to get one.
  • They don’t want to sacrifice their comfort and easy lifestyle for the pain and burden of children, so they opt for birth control and abortion.
  • They don’t want to have to sacrifice their happiness (and time, etc.) for a man whom they find unattractive, and so they opt for divorce.

And so on and so forth.

Later in his post Deep Strength says this:

Christian wives hate suffering and putting their own will aside to display Christ-like behavior. They would rather manipulate the situation around them to be better by their own volition than try it God’s way.

Again, putting aside their own will is a sacrifice. And one they don’t want to have to make. Further, it is one they all too often refuse to make.

Of course, that isn’t really any different from men. Men don’t want to have to sacrifice either. That is just general human nature. The thing is, this is where Deep Strength’s statements about coddling are important.

Women are, on average, far more coddled than men in today’s society. It is far more common for men to be taught and told that they will have to sacrifice to achieve what they want in life, than it is for women. And even then, for women, the scale of the sacrifice they are told to expect is likely to be less.

What does this means? It means that women are less inclined to sacrifice in general. When they must sacrifice, they are inclined to sacrifice less. And of course, they try and shift as much of that burden of sacrifice onto men as they can get away with.

The solution requires confronting this problem head on. Women, of all ages, need to be reminded that we all must sacrifice. Especially as Christians. Our faith is one of self-sacrifice. Without a willingness to sacrifice, well, our Lord and Savior explained what would happen:

18 “Hear then the parable of the sower. 19 When any one hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what is sown in his heart; this is what was sown along the path. 20 As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; 21 yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away. 22 As for what was sown among thorns, this is he who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the delight in riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 23 As for what was sown on good soil, this is he who hears the word and understands it; he indeed bears fruit, and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.”

(Matthew 13:18-23)

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Filed under Blue Pill, Christianity, Churchianity, Civilization, Men, Moral Agency, Parenting, Red Pill, Sin, Temptation, Women

Starting With The Right Question

I want to begin this post with a little bit of scripture:

25 And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 He said to him, “What is written in the law? How do you read?” 27 And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” 28 And he said to him, “You have answered right; do this, and you will live.”

29 But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30 Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him, and departed, leaving him half dead. 31 Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. 32 So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was; and when he saw him, he had compassion, 34 and went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; then he set him on his own beast and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35 And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ 36 Which of these three, do you think, proved neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” 37 He said, “The one who showed mercy on him.” And Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

(Luke 10:25-37)

Here we have the classic parable of the good Samaritan. I’m sure most of my readers are quite familiar with it. My purpose in mentioning this parable is to examine the lawyer.

You see, the lawyer asks two questions. The first one is good, and I think, honest. The second question is an entirely different matter, however.

When the lawyer asked Jesus “who is my neighbor?”, what do we think his purpose was?

Was the lawyer trying to ensure that he lived out God’s law to the fullest? Did he ask the question ensure he didn’t miss anyone?

Of course not. Scripture tells us that he was looking to justify himself. The lawyer wasn’t asking Jesus that question in order to get what I suppose you could call an “expansive” answer. Rather, the lawyer was trying to use whatever criteria that Jesus mentioned in order to limit those whom he would treat as a neighbor. He didn’t want lots of neighbors, he wanted as few of them as possible. Hence the question.

His goal was to restrict the amount of love he had to show his fellow man. In other words, the lawyer wanted to be miserly with love. And he was counting on Jesus to help him out with this (boy was he in for a surprise).

In short, the lawyer’s heart wasn’t in the right place from the very beginning. And so his question was wrong from the very beginning. A better question, rather than “And who is my neighbor?”, would have been “How can I live out the law to the fullest?” Such a question comes from a heart that is aligned to God.

Whenever we ask a question which concerns living out our faith, we always need to ask it when our heart is in the right place. If God is not first and foremost there- if serving and loving him totally is not our aim and purpose- then our endeavor is corrupt from the start. Whatever comes of it will invariably be twisted in some way.

I mention all of this because Deep Strength has a couple of recent posts concerning submission in marriage: The problems with intelligent submission being the first, and Wifely submission is easy being the second. Both of these posts draw as their origin a simple enough question: “When should I obey my husband?”

It is my belief that this particular question, just like the question of the lawyer, comes from the wrong place in the heart (perhaps intentionally, perhaps unintentionally) . Its purpose is not “How can I live out the law to the fullest?” Rather, the purpose is to limit obedience, to limit that which must be rendered to another. Much in the same way that the lawyer wanted to limit how much love he had to render to his fellow man.

A better question, one arising from a heart aligned with God, would be more along these lines: “Which action now available to me would be most pleasing to God?” Otherwise stated, “What action would be most loving?”

 

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Filed under Christianity, Churchianity, God, Marriage, Moral Agency, Sin, Temptation, Women