MadMonk wrote:So I gather Atheists would not use nuclear weapons as a first strike weapon but only as a measure of last resort? Does this have any connection to the belief that there is no afterlife, that this world with all its faults is the only one that will ever exist, meaning to contaminate it with massive radiation is selfdefeating?
Truman and the American military were probably quite Christian, I guess. It is easier to use the bomb when you won't get hit by one in retaliation also. Christian fanatics, Jewish supremacists, Muslim extremists, Buddhist fundamentalists, Scientologist whackjobs. Spirituality is something that has been lost in the modern era, but the old interpretations have only themselves to blame for not adapting to the times.
There needs to be something new. Materialism and complete focus on the self is not sustainable when we need to reconcile the greater need for cooperation, sharing and sacrifice across different people and borders. Tribal, ethnic and cultural loyalties are caring that torch as far as it can, but obviously very limited.
One wonders how those who profess to hold religious belief can resort so casually to overwhelming force and accept civilian casualties on such a grand scale. Sometimes I question whether or not those who profess to be religious really believe in it deep down.
Potemkin wrote:The state apparatus is a tool in the hands of the dominant class of society. In Britain, this is entirely obvious - the bourgeoisie clearly dominate the state, and largely control it. Almost everyone in government has been privately educated, and is usually a graduate of Oxbridge. They cannot simply ignore the wishes and needs of the other social classes, of course, otherwise there would be a general uprising to overthrow that state apparatus. But they make sure that whatever happens, whatever policies are implemented, always operate in their own class interests.
In many ways some type of market socialism would in the interests of the bourgeoisie because this more than any other set up would allow them to retain ownership of property while not creating discontent in the proletarian masses. Neo-liberalism is not a middle class interest, strictly speaking.
Potemkin wrote:Besides, I take what Christ said to heart - "Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's, and unto God what is God's." Caesars are necessary, but we should not worship them. The state is necessary, but we should not worship it as the embodiment of social love and harmony. It clearly isn't.
Definitely not worship the state and perhaps the state shouldn't be the ebodiment of social love and harmony, but it should at least encourage social love between the people and a harmonious society free from want and fear.
Potemkin wrote:God is indeed a Man of War, but not a vainglorious empire-building Man of War, such as the nations surrounding Israel were - the Assyrians, the Babylonians, the Romans and other ephemeral worldly empires - but God wages a particular kind of War, as Mary proclaimed: a War which will put down the mighty and exalt the lowly, and the spoils of this War will go to the poor and the needy. What War is this? It is Revolution!
It can't be a communist or any other sort of revolution. Christ was not a communist and did not have a political ideology like any which exist today. We should be very careful with drawing analogies between religious figures and worldly political movements, left or right. Using religion for political ends or trying to use religion to justify a political cause disrespects the religion.
Potemkin wrote:Agreed. This antipathy goes back a millennium at least, and is overspill from the antipathy between the Latins and the Byzantines. Most Western Russophobes, of course, are completely unaware of the historical basis of their hatred. But nonetheless, that is the basis of it. If the West had only hated Russia because of the Communist threat, then their hatred would surely has dissipated by now. It hasn't, which suggests a much deeper historical grounding for it.
A lot of it comes down to the fact that the Russians apparently don't smile and are the villains in movies, that's the level of a lot of people's feelings on the subject. A lot is based on pig ignorant stereotypes. There's also a general disinterest in finding out more about Russia so no one ever becomes particularly educated. For example, you're seen as weird if you show any interest in Russian films, books, music and most people wouldn't want to choose Russian as a second language. I know, for example that the British middle classes like to watch subtitled foreign dramas from France, Germany or Scandinavia, but you'd never get them watching anything Russian.
A lot of the problems in post-Cold War relations are down to this disinterest, disinterest that's combined with strongly held opinions on said subject, which is a very strange combination. I would not say this is hatred at the level of common people, however, but it influences the way the political class see the world. It's more ignorance than hatred.
Potemkin wrote:They do, but it is impossible for them to mean it. For example Richard Nixon was a devout Quaker, and one of the basic principles of the Quaker version of the Christian faith is pacificism. Yet Nixon was bombing South East Asia with wild abandon during the Vietnam War, even sometimes as nothing more than a negotiating tactic. Was he being a good Prince, or a good Christian?
A lot of politicans are like this, Christian or indeed Muslim when it suits them. I've always been highly skeptical of any politican who champions a religion too loudly, and the loudly religious in general.
This is the test of sincerity, how far you take your religion when it becomes difficult to do so. Other than that people use religion as a window dressing or ideological decoration. I've noticed a particular laxity when it comes to the parts of religions that deal with how you treat other people, the context of war being one notable example. How Christian and Muslim rulers can preside over mass killing is beyond me, and to do so in the name of either religion is sacrilegious. This is not some happy clappy pacifist claptrap, all the traditional confessions abhor violence and hatred, aside from some obscure sectarians and political fanatics.
For Nixon the choice over carpet bombing Cambodia did not even seem to register, which to me suggests he was some type of sociopath. Many politicians throughout history and even today are essentially desk murderers.
Potemkin wrote:Do they not fear the judgement of the God they claim to believe in? Have they no sense of shame at all?
I've wondered about this and the only conclusion I can reach is that they simply don't care. I am even doubtful as to whether they really believe in the first place. Religion is just an expedient tool or even an intellectual toy for them.
You see in them an absence of moral fear, an absence of the fear of being evil that is linked to sincere religious conviction. A true believer in any religion will be scared of being evil or doing evil, they won't have a self-righteous comfort and assurance.
A good person, including among secular people, will feel sad or disgusted by violence. But those who can enable it with the flick of a pen are a different breed entirely. The Russians also hate violence, by the way. I've seen a lot of Russian films and historical dramas where Lavrentiy Beria and chekists are portrayed as the villains while people like Zhukov are the heroes who had to cope with them. You and I have mentioned before about Brezhnev and how he wasn't a natural killer. I suspect Khruschev was similar. Did you know that once upon a time Brezhnev's grandaughter or niece (I can't remember which) was told to bring him a flower in his car, it made him cry. So I don't think the Soviets or Russians are as brutal or as cold as the press makes out. I reject positivist notions of culture shaping personality and what constitutes the Russian culture is likely to be highly misread by those who have no experience of it.
Verv wrote:The pattern of polluted societies being cleaned out via disaster and conquest is very old. Societies which are morally bankrupt have great issues staying together. They are atomized, and nobody sees utility in their failed traditions.
Since they are morally disgusting, their culture is shunned.
But just as we emerged from an age of the corporal religion of the Hebrews into the age of Christianity, we may be going into another age. Some believe it is the case that we are approaching apocalypse. This is perhaps best argued for with the idea that we have weapons of mass destruction, which makes conventional methods of correction impossible, and because power that is steeped in sin and degeneration can be more easily entrenched.
I have tremendous fear for where Western society is heading. You need only look at the newspapers to read about how people are behaving. In a country like England there is a huge problem of violence. And you as an Orthodox believer absolutely deplore this would you not? I think an epidemic of violence is part and parcel of a polluted society. It is terrifying that such a society has access to nuclear weapons!
Verv wrote:I saw the number tossed about by a pro-Russian commentator that 13,000 Russians were killed by Ukrainian forces. I have no idea if this is mostly just the body count from the Donbass conflict or what, but there are famous incidents of civilians being killed, and of a DPR soldier being torture-killed on camera (crucified and set on fire).
As far as I know the eastern parts of the country were heavily shelled by Kiev up until Zelensky took power. I'm not from Ukraine or Russia but that's just what I've heard. I can remember sitting up at night back in around 2014 watching media reports of such shelling, including seeing a boy and his mother in tears.
Verv wrote:Racism/racialism and even anti-racism are all materialist doctrines: they reduce man to very specific lineages and static heritage.
As well as reducing people to typologies based on these criteria. They have to classify everyone accordingly and then think you are merely the sum of your class, heritage, and sociological role. They deny mankind moral volition and the right to choose one's convictions.
Verv wrote:The amount of suffering a man does may actually indicate his blessedness by God due to the efforts being employed to save him, while the amount of easy living and decadence that are visible shows his alienation from God. Of course, this is simplistic: who knows what happens behind closed doors. This example only assists in reminding us that blessed are the poor.
In spite of what many people think being happy and not having experienced any difficulty in one's life are not desirable ends in themselves. A person must taste the sweet and bitter to cultivate their inner person. Inner conflict produces depth of soul.
Verv wrote:A few days ago a good friend of mine shared with me a quotation that really rocked my world... That, ultimately, all religions are peaceful until they are taken over & rebranded by political institutions.
I have thought a bit more about how anarchy does not have to be a realistic form of government, but can also just be a stance towards the corrupt and imperfect governments that we have, a general opposition to the world... So, pacifism does not have to actually solve the problem of violence, it just has to oppose violence insofar as it is practical to achieve the most peaceful result.
Perhaps it is the case that Christianity needs be a pacifistic religion.
I'll never understand how people can justify violence in the name of Christianity, any attempt to do so is always highly contrived. Yet this has always happened throughout history and happens today as well.
Orthodoxy strikes me as a denomination that's especially averse to violence and hatred.
annatar1914 wrote:It is a useful thought expression, when beginning this part of my comments on sin and the city, to think of Sin as a kind of substance (even though the Scholastics would vehemently disagree) which is like a pathogen or poison, toxic substances, and thus something which requires people to live at least as long as it takes to further propagate It. Furthermore, it is a substantial thing that is intelligently directed, therefore a weapon against God and man and something that leads to another substance: Death. These things require a maximizing of people in a minimum of space, in order to have their fullest effect. So, the City, at least in this fallen condition of existence, is something which arises out of necessity not only in a material sense, but out of the long war of the fallen Angels against mankind too.
I am sorry, I'm not qualified to comment on this. I think someone from the church or learned men of religion could offer more insight. Perhaps you are such a person yourself? That is to say, accredited in the church. As to whether or sin is a physical substance, that is far beyond my professonal capacity to offer to comment on, I'm afraid!
annatar1914 wrote:How is the Modern State the " fatal flaw" of Modernity, when it is the engine and weapon of Modernity's successful march throughout the world? Well, it relates to an insight of Michel Foucault, that prior to Modernity the State was based on Sovereignty and concentrated in one person, every crime was a transgression against the Sovereign who was the personal source of all Law. Now with Modernity, crime is transgression against a series of abstractions and common beliefs. But I go further than Foucault. I say that the Modern State can easily dissolve all its abstract justifications and that the real power of the Modern State is in the very transgression against the ultimate Sovereignty, that of God (and the concept of God) Himself. What this means on a practical level and linear scale of time is, in my opinion, that all that is transgressive will be granted permission for, so long as power is given in turn to the Modern State, absolute power, an Anarcho Tyranny if you will. And what is the modern state except the sword and shield of Oligarchy?
So how is this State the fatal flaw of Modernity as I mentioned earlier? Because in certain circumstances, the person or persons at the apex of the State machinery can restore the concept of Personal Sovereignty to the State, and thus threaten Modernity itself by extension.
As a thread to pick up now that we've covered this ground, is the Modern City the reservoir then of State power, of Modernity? Of course, because as I'll show, it is the reservoir of transgression, of sin.
The state can be a force for the moral good, providing it is informed by good governance and the rule of good people. Surely it comes down to the sorts of people who are in charge? Unfortunately the types of people who are attracted to politics are not those who will pursue ideals for very long. Love of money and power, and careerism, seem to motivate politicians more than any other factors.
annatar1914 wrote:Far preferable would be a simple return to the Truth in the face of the Lie, and a rejection of the very foundational principles of the Lie. Scary as that might be, a seemingly insane leap...Backwards.
This brings me back to my belief that a lot of ideology is unecessary and based on mere supposition. Ideology divides people, it creates terrible upheavals and problems. Bolshevism, fascism, neo-liberalism, all ideologies, and all very much products of Western modernity! I don't think that I'm without ideology but this type of rigid inhuman dogma is pointless. The only ideology we should believe in is that which provides stability for society, enforces the ties of kinship and neighbourliness between people. Ideology must be a reflection of eternal truths that everyone has known since time immemorial. Ideology must not fall into extremism.
To this end most structuralism is also supposition. We should avoid the systemic thinking and grand theories which are popular among academics East and West.
annatar1914 wrote:But in this world of fallen mankind and of sin, sin both personal and collective, I have to say that while modern civilization makes it easier to sin , there is plenty of blame to go around in the East and the South of the world. The Light, the Right Belief, grows dim with Schism and Heresy rampant in the world. Leaders of once Orthodox countries strive to be as the West is in its own realm, strive to be Great instead of Good. People regard Nation or People, in this world, temporary and transitory, as a greater good than the Kingdom of Heaven, eternal and full of the Christian Race of all kinds of people. Brother kills brother. This cannot stand, those who lose are those with one foot in the camp of the Enemy.
Too often we see that there's finger pointing in one direction, if America does it this seems to make it acceptable to others. But if America commits sins that doesn't beatify the sins of other nations.
annatar1914 wrote:When I speak of the " Giants" as the Israelites called them, the Pagan " Heroes and Mighty Men, Men of Renown ", I want to be clear that this Type of mankind is at the core of the Aristocratic principle, and integral to the thinking of a Neitzsche or Ludovici. I will describe this type of person when they are in the ascendancy:
Firstly, they hold to a Master Morality, where they are free but regard most others as cattle, as servants. They come to power through their alleged superiority of natural gifts and aggressive instincts and will to power. They are passionate, giving free reign to their lusts and expressions of desire. They do not conceal their power but revel in it and in taking overt actions against opponents. They are often magnanimous to like minded foes of similar status, but are inhuman to those beneath. They rejoice in conflict as the development of their gifts and abilities, the opportunity to test their self against others. The ways of pity are strange to them, as are concepts of democracy, socialism, equality, and the religious and spiritual impulses. They see religion as suppressing the drives of greater and superior mankind, which operates beyond rules of morality and the thinking of the " common herd".
Such were Achilles and Hercules and the Heroes, and so too men like Caesar and Alexander. And today we can see others like this, no doubt, but this Aristocratic thinking was the organizing framework, literally, for Pagan society.
For a thousand years, this was suppressed somewhat by Christianity, but certain historical events led to its return in the modern era, to the point where it is making its return.
These types of people think they can do anything, they have license to do what they please because they're 'better' than others, but they'll only be leading themselves down the road of perdition and damnation. I can't understand this way of thinking, it's a type of madness. Will to Power is madness, because power is wrong, man should not seek power. The so called master versus slave morality is such a bizarre way of seeing the world, mind you it has probably been misinterprted and distorted from its original expression, but who knows.
Yes, Christianity did suppress this, because Christianity forces people to think twice and to feel with their heart whereas the Master Morality doesn't have a place for such gentleness.
They live in a type of simulacra, fancying themselves aristocrats when they don't possess any of the virtues of old Christian aristocracy and want to be supermen. No man is super human, we are not born for conflict and war. This is not the natural state of humanity. We are here only to love others in the fullest and most unreserved fashion, that is the true heroism, to love in spite of the world, for there is no love without suffering.
annatar1914 wrote:Who are the Giants now? Who are the Mighty Men, the Men of Renown, the men of today like the Pagan heroes of old? I welcome suggestions from my readers....
Napoleon? Hitler? Mussolini?
I don't know, but they're out there, I can feel it. They are intrepid and cruel, intelligent and powerful, brave and fearless. They will not serve, anyone. But they'd have others bend to their will.
What is frightening about such people is that they truly care about no one but themselves, they are incapable of deep love, or at the very least so divorced from it as to not feel it. They lack the introspection to recover themselves. And that's their main problem, although they are men of action they lack the ability to sit in stillness and think. They act but can't think or feel, so their souls lack nourishment. They can't hear anything in the silence of the forest.
Action is in itself a type of psychosis, that is to say action without introspection, without an inner world. To live purely to act is not human, it's in fact a trait of machines. But then humanity is becoming more and more machine like as the years pass, almost to the point of merging with it a la transhumanism.
annatar1914 wrote:One people really, coming from the same spiritual baptismal font of St. Vladimir, very heartbreakingly sad.
But all this cannot be undone now, it can be resolved though, in some fashion. It's the working of Divine Providence, Hegel's " cunning of history ".
One thing is certain to my mind though, that the Russian lands as an appendage of the West, is over. I believe that the Westernization will be rolled back as well. While this has happened because of our sins, and most egregiously for me my own I add (for I have not fully lived as I should), I believe that it will turn out to the true good. The East will be a Bastion towards the End.
A Bastion against what, that's what I am trying to figure out exactly. Organized material Evil a generation from now may not resemble its forms now exactly.
This is of course once the mad trends in the West have turned it into something beyond any recognition. In Russia too there is growing liberalism but it seems the Russians will always have a more arhaic streak that will never accept the more avant garde cultural trends of Western civilisation. Any strange innovation brought onto Russian soil is of course completely foreign to her people and they will perceive it as such. They will always retain their essential Russian soul.
Of course I believe a lot of these trends are foreign to the West as well, that is to say the broad masses of Western countries, but then all of this is being imposed upon the population. The broad masses in any polity do not choose their beliefs, they accept what the 'nobles' tell them to believe.
It is an absolute tragedy, two branches of the same people, brothers from the start, fighting and killing each other over nothing. That should not be the natural state of relations between such countries. It is always heartbreaking when two brothers fight and this war is making me very sad.
By virtue of geography I don't think Russia will ever be completely isolated from the West, it can't live separately from Europe, for as much as she is Asiatic a large part of her identity she shares with the Slavonic peoples of the Latin world, and even the Lutheran Finns are similar in ancestry to much of the Volga Finns, from which the Russians derive a lot of their ancestry. Moscow is only a few hours plane ride away from most European capitals.
This tells me that Europe and Russia need to find a way of co-existing and living together on the same continent in sustainable peace. It is perhaps the most pressing physical existential issue of our time, but one that's been ignored, the imperative for establishing a mutual accomodation between East and West. We should never say that this is impossible or that this task is naive idealism, for the very future of Christendom and of the world depends on it. War and conflict are not a solution for anyone, and the cost of war could very likely be our mutual annihilation.
The excesses of Western liberalism won't appeal to Russia and the European mentality as it exists today will be alien to many there. Similarly you'll have a lot of Europeans that profess to find Russia strange. How is it possible to reconcile peoples with such differing ideologies, but yet ideologies as choice. And yet there are Europeans who will be drawn to the classic Russian soul that they read of in books and see in their films, just as there will be Russians who go full in for the European liberalism. There is no reason why a Bavarian farmer and a Pomor couldn't be friends, providing it is based on a refusal to impose upon each other and to be good people. The good from among each country will maintain cordial relations because they are of a similar calibre and mentality. I don''t believe that nationalities, religions or class separate us. We could find similar camraderie and friendship with people from all backgrounds, through our moral volition and through respecting the personhood of the other human. But people don't want to find the common good among them, they want division and want to believe in silly lies. Many differences between people are differences of perception, differences that exist in the epistemological, conceptual and linguistic realms. For example, so much could be said between two people from conflicting civilisations but the issues can never be resolved because people don't want to communicate freely or openly, or they don't want to see the commonality. Too much is based on false supposition, structural thinking and dogma that prevents true human connnection.
I don't believe that Russia is fundamentally an Asiatic country that can't experience any common ground with Europeans, not that Asia and Europe can't experience camraderie either. If she is Eurasian then she is both European and Asiatic at the same time and a bridge between both. Although Russians would tell me that their country is incomprehensible to me and that I'll never understand them I don't find them as alien as they think. In fact America is for me a stranger country in many ways, but then that is only one face of America, not the entirety of the American person. And each American can choose what sort of American, what sort of human they want to be. None of it is immutable. Man has moral volition, the individual is not merely the product of his civilisation. I reject such positivist thinking. Moral volition is what allows a person to become baptised, to choose Catholicism, Orthodoxy, Islam or Buddhism. There is every sort of person in every country. And you can choose to love any people, person or believe in any creed or ideal, because what shapes your inner world is not dependent on sociological factors.
There is too little empathy and love in the world. In fact this war was caused due to a lack of love and empathy, lack of understanding between peoples and their leaders. Under conditions of true Christian brotherhood such a war could never happen.
Therefore our task is to bring about calmness in the world, in our own countries and abroad. This will entail raising the cultural level of the West and reviving positive moral traits which will allow us to conduct our affairs in a more ordered fashion, both as individuals and collectively. We must put our own houses in order and recognise that we are truly damaged societies. Sometimes I think one of the greatest problems of the West today is that our cultural level has become severely limited. In days gone by people used to read heavily, whereas today people don't read as much and if they do read it is nearly always contemporary. The fiction is contemporary and the more scholastic work is generally some post-modernist dross or pseudo intellectual right wing claptrap. No one reads the classics and we are suffering for it. Another problem, especially in the English speaking countries is that almost all literature is from their own cultural space, they rarely consume the work of authors from other countries. I read in Brothers Karamazov how many times they reference the German playwright Schiller, so it was clear they were reading foreign literature there in the 19th century. Today the English very rarely read foreign authors, especially not Russian or German ones and this is a loss for the wider society, because it prevents people from becoming cultivated and developing their inner souls.
I truly think that the Western civilisation is most in crisis today because its intellectual class and its artists have become bankrupt. They have run out of culture and can't produce new uplifting work that speaks to the heart or that shows the road forward. In the spheres of politics, international relations and social harmony it is no different. In our discussions here we've explored the dichotomy between barbarian and urban societies, but I think within post-modernity we're witnessing the rise of a new type of barbarism, the barbarism of those who refuse self-cultivation. There's no more poetry, no more literature, just the corporate noise of end of history nothingness.
annatar1914 wrote:The first is one I've talked about before, the Copernican Revolution. Begun in 1515 AD. It changed everything, crowned by Kants dictum that man would thereafter determine " a priori " the nature of objects prior to observation. One Barrier down.
The second revolutionary movement is likewise novel, begun in 1492 AD with the discovery of the New World, which became the embodiment of starting over for mankind and recovering some alleged lost purity or lost doctrine which could be a new light to mankind, a " empire of liberty " or " philosophical republic " that is also the esoteric Atlantis reborn. Another Barrier down.
The third revolution is not in the cosmological or philosophical/terrestrial realms, but in the spiritual, with the birth of Protestantism in 1517 AD. Where every human being ultimately determines their own spirituality ( at the time, Christianity of some sort), or none at all. The final Barrier down.
At what point do these converge? With the United States of America. No barriers, no veils, no limits allowed. The convergence symbolically culminated in the Moon landings of 1969 AD, as the story goes.... The triumph over Heaven and Earth, symbolized in recapitulation by speaking the words of Genesis chapter one by the Apollo crew, the esoteric and hermetic dreams realized. And earlier, the Trinity test in the New Mexico desert in 1945 of the Atomic Bomb. And around that same era, Playboy magazine and its later iterations. No " coats of skins" to cover us, no sin or guilt, shame or honor, tradition or hierarchy.
We live in the aftermath, the result of all this. There has been and only can be one Revolution, the American Revolution. Will the world be an American Civilization, or something else? Will Atlantis triumph, reborn from the Flood, or will Hyperborea?
I have my own idea of what the answer is. But I welcome you to discuss your answers for sure. For that is traditional too: " come, let us reason together ".
And the structuralist revolution from the 1960s onwards.
annatar1914 wrote:When I was preparing for writing on these issues, as a side note I read of what is clear about Sodom and Gommorah and the three other cities of the plain. The cities were on a downward spiral: having rebelled against their Mesopotamian overlords means that they had already lost one war against them in the first place, and then later their rebellion resulted in having their cities sacked and burned down and the survivors marched off into slavery, including Righteous Lot, before being rescued by Saint
Abraham. They clearly were immune to the prodding of conscience and this led to their final Heavenly destruction.
But that rescue by Abraham and his handful of servants and allies over an entire Mesopotamian army is of interest. For the rescuers were not civilized men, but Shepherds, Barbarians almost by definition. Already a tremendous disparity is at play, early on in human history. Does the wickedness of the City and of the more civilized peoples render them weakened and subject to the predation of strong people, or of deliverance from the same by even stronger but fiercer folk? Like Roman's using Huns to repel Germans?
Or even of the Soviets liberating Germany from Nazism in 1945. In doing so they actually saved Western Christendom, both Catholic and Protestant, even if this was under the red banner.
annatar1914 wrote:And so, today I see the turning point, where the " Sovoks", the " Aborigines" of the Wild Field, took up the fight of their grandparents. For Nation. For Socialism. For Orthodoxy. And have won, by not losing.
Now the real revolution begins, the decisive rejection of Western civilization and the preservation of integral humanity in the face of Faustian/Promethean transhumanism.
It will be interesting in the coming days how people's attitudes towards the Donbass situation might reflect a worldview coming down on one side of the aforementioned devide or the other. One will likely now witness the acceleration of the decline in Western forms of Christianity and/or a reaction that results in civil wars and conflict in numerous places in the West.
The Americanization of Europe will now proceed almost unhindered.
Yes, it is perceived as a war of values and beliefs. The thought of Ukraine going over to the West causes Russians tremendous emotional suffering, it is like seeing their soul drift over to the antithesis of what they preceive themselves to be in the present age. Western experts have never understood the emotional and even spiritual value of Ukraine to the Russian people. Discussions of this nature are often dismissed as 'mysticism' and irrational. It's just another instance of a difference between a peasant mentality and an urban one, in which the former perceives this conflict as one beyond money and interests whereas the latter is characterised by a scholastic and mercantlie view. This failure to find a common language with the Russians has caused tremendous problems in East-West relations since 1991.
The Americanisation of Europe is well established and has been for a very long time. Europeans live very much the same way as each other these days, and all of them live very much like Americans.
annatar1914 wrote:Earlier I spoke offhandedly of " Americanization ", which is almost but not quite identical in meaning to " Modernization " or " Westernization ". Almost, but not quite. The magic of the symbolism of the New World is that it is in fact, new. A person is modern who can move to this New World and create a seemingly new existence, rejecting centuries if not thousands of years of the experience and belief of their ancestors as if it were nothing.
Admit it folks: to be American or to be Modern is to say that all your ancestors were wrong, were idiots. What kind of person moves from everything they have ever known, willingly, except someone with a psychotic break from previous reality? I say: willingly, because so many immigrants did not....And those native to the New World saw it as the World, of course, and nothing particularly different in the Modernist sense, a new and novel chance to remake human beings and their environment.
What I've never understood is why so many Americans actively distance themselves from the Old World. They are so patriotic to America as if it were the land of their ancestors for thousands of years and they have no prior history to their arrival there. They refuse to embrace their Old World identities.
Of course not all Americans are like this, but many are fanatically patriotic to a country that only emerged in the 18th century, almost to a religious level that you would expect for somewhere in Europe.
I don't believe that Americans are any different to any other people, there are good and bad among them, but the prevailing ideologies in America, as in many other Western countries of the present age, are bizzare and not conducive to any sort of life I'd want to lead. It seems America wants to believe in fairy tales, this obsession with an ever sustained happiness that no one ever has in this life. And the self-loathing in America, this strange cult of misery that exists alongside the simultaneous appeal to naive happiness. I've never encountered a country that has such a dim view of itself while also being so proud. It's like a strange type of post-modern woke imperialist libertarianiam is emerging there. Americans are taught to loathe themselves while not being able to make any real changes for the better. Clearly not all is well in America at the moment, the gun violence being symptomatic of this.
annatar1914 wrote:It's almost as if they know their enemies quite well, maybe even more than those enemies do themselves. Eckart was a playwright who translated Ibsen's " Emperor and Galilean" into German.... its curious how it lines up with and even explains Hitler's thinking with that influence, as Hitler admired the Emperor who wanted to restore Paganism, Julian the Apostate. It always goes back to the Hellenistic Paganism as the foundation of Western Modernity, doesn't it?
Although I think the paganism they sought to restore was Germanic rather than Hellenic, was it not?
annatar1914 wrote:Look at recent events in Afghanistan and the Ukraine. This is the Magian East divorcing the Faustian West , regardless of the specific circumstances of the initial breaks. Putin being a reluctant Eurasian, but the Taliban being all in on this new old cultural space stretching from the Dniepr to Vladivostok, and from the Arctic to the Horn of Africa. Even the Jews are part of it.
People who have chosen their own morals and ideals, not had them force fed from journalists or academics in Paris, California or London.
annatar1914 wrote:Watched a clip of an ABC news journalist outside Moscow, bewildered after his interviews with regular people in the working suburbs, that they didn't mind isolating from the world and who think they are fighting the equivalent of another Great Patriotic War.
No, you don't get it, most of you in your West. That's part of what this thread has been all about, the looming disconnect between the East and South against West and North. And why this is happening.
Failure to appreciate this is actually very dangerous. They think sanctions can change the internal politics of Russia, but it simply won't work. Are they really this naive? As I said before, this war is perhaps more ideological and immaterial than it is anything else, at least for the Russian side. No one wants war, but of those who do it is not entirely rational or understandable with the rational mind. It isn't based on sequential or linear thinking.
They won't understand, and that's part of the reason why this war happened, because no one listens to these people or what is important to them. It's dismissed as silly because from the point of view of the average contemporary Westerner that is precisely what it is. There's a massive disconnect in wordview and mentality.
annatar1914 wrote:And in reaction to this turn to the East of Russia, is a number of articles warning Russia of its demographic relations with Muslims and that Islam will be the only winner in this Russia/Ukraine conflict, etc...that I feel compelled to respond.
After the fall of Constantinople to the Turks in 1453 AD, Gennadius Scholarius was made Patriarch of Constantinople, he being an anti Latin and against the Unia of the Pseudo Council of Florence.
St Alexander Nevsky Prince of Novgorod, defeated the Teutonic Knights and the Swedes, but was vassal to the Golden Horde.
One can recover and adapt to physical threats, but the forced imposition of an alien ideology, of heresy, schism, and apostasy in the end, is eternal spiritual destruction. Physical regeneration of a Polity is possible, but is useless and short lived without a spiritual regeneration. In any case, ultimately the future rests with God, and sometimes some things cannot be fought but rather endured. Or vice versa.
The form of society of Islam is as Magian, as Monotheistic, as Holy Rus of Old Russia. The form of society in the West is formlessness, leading to eventual death both physical and spiritual. The Muslim and I can argue theology and claim the other is false and mistaken and even go to war, but we both agree that the West is Pagan, returning to its original Paganism and even seeks to spread it. The Islamic concept of Taghut is almost identical to what I've been saying about the Giants, in fact, that I relate ultimately to the concept of Antichrist.
What is false will of course fail and be defeated, while only the truth remains. But at least I can tolerate for now some people who at least believe in the idea of absolute truth to begin with, and not be with the Western dictum of Pilate's " what is truth?", especially when It is standing right before their eyes...
I don't think that the Western civilisation is itself problematic, but something went very wrong at some point. There is something about the West that leads on this self-destructive road, perhaps it's scholasticism, but that is probably only one element.
The Western peoples are very good and possess tremendous human qualities, as do all peoples. There are good and bad in the West, but this is not an issue of what the people want, it's what is happening around them or should I say, being imposed on them. It is very difficult to resist the cultural and political trends of one's country and civilisation. The issue of the West is that there is an absence of thinking people, the people don't want to think. They watch too much television and read too little. As much as there is rampant individualism (which is highly divergent from the original individualism of the West) the average person is quite conformist, so there is a fear of thinking differently. It's very important to note that most people are conformists in any part of the world, the West is hardly unique in this, but Western conformism is leading to tremendous problems for the civilisation. The intelligentsia and artistic class are failing the masses.
One can be easily forgiven if one wonders if I lost the point I had made, about the beginning of history, the Giants, and so forth, talking about the Greco Roman and Western civilization.
But not so. I want to have my readers and fellow contributors to recall the development of modern civilization as I go back and explain as best I can my core thesis I have developed.
The Giants as described in Scripture explain Pagan society, are in fact the very real source of its Mythology, and that furthermore, Israelite and Greco Roman thought very well influenced and informed each other, despite being antithetical to each other. But I go further and link the legend of Atlantis as written by Plato to certain passages in Scripture, in the Apocalypse of St John. I will explain thereafter how this connects to future events.
Needless to say, I can only give a bare bones demonstration of these ideas, yet at the very least I hope to show how the world of the Monotheistic believer, the Magian of Spengler, is from the beginning absolutely opposed to the modern project, which in fact has a pedigree almost as old as the Monotheistic one. And this might be useful to the more secular readers as well.
Was it Greco-Roman thought or scholasticism and free enquiry of the Early Modern era which led to the development of excessive modernism? I've heard it claimed many times that it is impossible to divorce Christian philosophy from the Greco-Roman tradition. What do you make of such a claim? It looks like Shestov might have an opinion on this matter? I think that to reject the Greco-Roman heritage and intellectual corpus would be a grave mistake. It's too rich and too fundamental to both the Latin and Greek civilisations, we need this intellectual foundation, even if we don't take it literally.
annatar1914 wrote:It has been my belief, expressed before, that what this New Atlantis needed to fully
exist was a new religion, resembling both Monotheism and Paganism alike in form, with a mythology that provides answers of a teleological sort (hidden in previous centuries in the West by occult teachings) that " explain" America and the New World , while mirroring the tale of Atlantis and American racialism and exceptionalism. This is of course Mormonism in my thinking. New but in essence not new at all whatsoever.
Consider this interesting perspective of an English Orthodox priest. I'm not saying Mormonism is the religion of the antichrist, however, and nor is this man. But this perspective is useful and helpful.
annatar1914 wrote:I want to be a bit clearer, insofar as I call the new official religion of the West in the future to be " Mormonism ". It could well be literally so, but could also be true in more of a metaphor, that Papism/Roman Catholic Church in its modernist development since its birth in 1054 AD has changed considerably since that time, and is likely to do so even more in the future.
I predict in fact that the Fatima apparition may well be theologically enshrined within the dogmatic structure of the Papal Church, with Russia and by extension Orthodoxy " spreading her errors" around the world as the apparition suggested. I suspect that there was much more involved with those events beginning in Portugal in 1917. Indeed, it may provide a means of amalgamation of Papism and other sects, even Mormonism, in the West.
But as I insisted, this religion whatever its origins will suit the needs of the new Imperium forming in the West that is excluding the East and forming barriers internally and externally against the East.
The question of truth in this matter, it really doesn't enter into the discussion. The West will follow the path of least resistance. Will the Catholicism of the new Intermarium being formed on Western frontiers win out? Or will it be the traditional Eastern hating Mormonism on the cutting edge of Western spiritual innovation, or something similar?
Depends on how much or how little the West is presently Pagan at this time, how much it softly or ferociously rejects any trace of the Monotheistic and Magian heritage.
I can imagine such a religion being completely different and new, it won't be one of the old revealed traditions. It will most likely integrate something from Indian and Chinese thinking, perhaps some type of synchretic fusion of Abrahamic with Vedic themes. The Catholic Church has very little popular appeal in Europe today and it is likely that any new religion would serve to replace it. However, it is distinctly possibe that the Catholic Church could be infiltrated. If a counterfeit Pope were to ascend to the Papacy this could spell disaster for Christendom.
annatar1914 wrote:One society will be led by the Giants, and another will not. The one that will be led by them will be so precisely because a conscious affirmation of the opposite, of Egalitarianism, moves people into a reactive hyper individualism, all the while supporting a profoundly dehumanizing Capitalism.
The other society will be protected to a degree, having shed Capitalism and affirmed Monotheism, promoting Socialism and Orthodoxy. David takes out Goliath because the Giant of Gath cannot see David as a threat, and the Philistines scoff at the arrival of another Sampson with the jawbone of an ass as his sword.
I believe I've gone far enough in my metaphor, this symbol, particularly because I happen to take them as quite real, as I've said. One might almost think that I believe that we shall dwindle until we're back in the kind of days in which the Scripture was written, and in my opinion one would be right for the most part about that. We shall do this in tandem with the proven failure of the worldview of Faustian civilization
Not all will be lost for the peoples of the former, however. It will be possible for each human being to choose their own beliefs, to combine their intellect with a deep moral will and to make their own path in life. The salvation of Western man is not a lost cause. I believe that the West will reach such an advanced state of decline that the only way for us will be upward and onward.
annatar1914 wrote:Recently read the Book of the Letter of Sirach in the Bible, and happened upon Sirach chapter 36, verses 5 through 9:
" Renew your signs and work fresh wonders: glorify Your hand and your right arm. Stir up your anger and your wrath: drive away the adversary and destroy the enemy. Hasten the time and remember Your oath, and let people declare Your mighty works. Let him who survives be devoured in Your fiery wrath, and may those who harm Your people meet destruction ".
And it is once again brought to mind that the " Magian" or cultural group of Monotheism, is a warrior faith culture, war both inner and outer, and that " God is a Man of War" as the song of Moses proclaims. Even the prayer of the Blessed Virgin Mary the Mother of God is martial:
" .... He has shown strength with His arm: He has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted the lowly. He has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich He has sent away empty...."
On one level an unseen cosmic battle only the discerning can see, but right here and now, a combat in spiritual and other meanings.
Back to the Mighty Men, the Proud. Scripture is of course full of how to and how not to resist them.
War is not the natural state of human kind. We should always avoid it, killing is always wrong. Unfortunately this is a fallen world. Is it not the case that the Orthodox Church requires soldiers to repent if they've killed an enemy in battle?
annatar1914 wrote:Look at recent events in Afghanistan and the Ukraine. This is the Magian East divorcing the Faustian West , regardless of the specific circumstances of the initial breaks. Putin being a reluctant Eurasian, but the Taliban being all in on this new old cultural space stretching from the Dniepr to Vladivostok, and from the Arctic to the Horn of Africa. Even the Jews are part of it.
Interestingly enough this area you've described encompasses the greater Eurasian space.
annatar1914 wrote:Many things will change.
Africa is with the East. So are the common people south of the Rio Grande and Key West.
There's no use trying to explain most of it. The Darkness doesn't comprehend it. This is for the Children of the Light, or those like myself who abide in Darkness and who are still too weak and ignorant, who wish further enlightenment. Its because of my sins these kinds of evils proliferate. I do not pray enough or fast enough or do good to my neighbors enough, to be of any use as more than an unfruitful servant.
Two worlds are slowly separating, growing apart.
Choose your world wisely.
You see, in the West, you will be presented with false options. Many will (even the most Trump Deranged Liberals) even want Trump or a one like him, back into a full political power by the time 2024 comes. Or worse.
And that's precisely the plan.
Let's hope for a situation in which the West eventually operates in concert with the East, and that the West will become part of the Magian world. The West must work for its own salvation, and it requires massive reform and cultural revival, dare I say even a cultural renovation.
Europe can save itself, and it's a necessity for it to do so, but the beliefs of the people living here will need to drastically change. Chinese, Indians, Europeans, Russians, Africans and Americans can all share this world, we simply need to find a common language. I don't believe this language is lost to the Europeans, no matter how lost they may seem at the present point in time.
There are many false choices and that's a huge probem. It's all symptomatic of the severely limited breadth of political thought in most Western capitals, and of the intellectual bankrupty of of vast swathes of our intelligentsia. The insane cultural trends and beliefs that the West have taken on alienate us from large swathes of humanity. A cosmpolitian Californian ultra-liberal will not be speaking the same language as a Pashtun pastoralist. This is not a question of culture as much one of ideology.
annatar1914 wrote:One can recover and adapt to physical threats, but the forced imposition of an alien ideology, of heresy, schism, and apostasy in the end, is eternal spiritual destruction. Physical regeneration of a Polity is possible, but is useless and short lived without a spiritual regeneration. In any case, ultimately the future rests with God, and sometimes some things cannot be fought but rather endured. Or vice versa.
The West has destroyed and continues to destroy itself in this fashion, brainwashing itself with silly ideologies and dogmas, punishing any sort of critical thought, all of which is consumed hook line and sinker by a population content with bread and circuses.
I was thinking to myself the other day, why are America and Europe a factory for strange ideas?
annatar1914 wrote:What is false will of course fail and be defeated, while only the truth remains. But at least I can tolerate for now some people who at least believe in the idea of absolute truth to begin with, and not be with the Western dictum of Pilate's " what is truth?", especially when It is standing right before their eyes...
These eternal truths are fundamental to maintaining a stable life, for harmony within one's own life and within the wider society.
annatar1914 wrote:When I read the Books of the Maccabees in Scripture, (or as I call them, the " Books of Resistance ") I am struck by parallels between them and other parts of Scripture like the Apocalypse. Take the 3rd Book of the Maccabees, where King Ptolemy was threatening the Jews in Egypt, with apostates from the Faith being branded by the officials of Ptolemy with the Mark of the cult of Dionysus, if they wanted to survive and keep their material benefits they had to experience the Mysteries of Paganism (3 Maccabees 2:29)....
Scripture explains Scripture. The Mark of the Beast referenced in the Apocalypse will be therefore a Mark like that of the symbol of Dionysus, explicitly affirming membership in the Pagan religion.
I've never been able to understand whether or not it will be a conscious choice one makes, or whether it is a type of spiritual state.
annatar1914 wrote:It wasn't that Christ as Man was not an Israelite patriot, being the Rightful King of Israel and all, but that His Mission at that time was not to restore the Kingdom to Israel.
So why didn't Christian people resist the Roman Empire with the sword? Because the goal was the Salvation of the Gentiles, the destruction of their Paganism, and the building up of the Church. And so resist they did, as Gibbon said... the Christians and Barbarians overthrew the Roman Empire. I will discuss later how that relates to the Orthodox Christian idea in Russia of the " Third Rome". Martyrdom is witness in meaning, literally, and it won, paradoxically.
But what now? What is to be done?
I think that God is using people, that His will is becoming manifested in remarkable ways.
Could we understand this to mean that Christ came to save the enemies of His own people?
Of course I understand that this is a case of imposing a modern understanding of imperialism on ancient times, I am not sure whether or not the people of this era would have viewed it this way.
annatar1914 wrote:Group of Western Socialists wrote this article about the conflict in the Ukraine, at:
And here's an excerpt:
" ,,,Secondly, in this war the modern Nazism is clear: the regime in Kiev, leveraged into power by a CIA coup in 2014 and with the obvious and clear purpose of suppressing any revival of Communism and particularly to help them in the former Soviet Union in case of any further Bolshevik revival sentiment emerging beyond the halfway house bonapartism of the idiot greater Russian nationalist Putin, balancing between Oligarch thugs and mass nostalgia for Soviet times (potentially revolutionary)"
I of course do not see a dichotomy between the Russian Idea and Socialism as such, but nonetheless seemed an interesting take on this issue to me.
Whether or not the 2014 events were the result of foreign influence or an indigenous political manifestation is I think unimportant. What is needed is reconciliation between Kiev and Moscow and it's patently clear that Ukraine is determined to head in a Westward direction.
It seems unlikely that Nazism played a major role in the events of 2014, it was only one tendency, the Ukrainian nationalist movement shifted to liberalism. Although there of course still pro-Bandrea elements and these haven't vanished, they're still there but hidden.
Any revival of socialism in either Ukraine or Russia seems like pie in the sky to me. They are not going to be flying the red flag again for a very long time.
annatar1914 wrote:I largely agree. It certainly picked up tempo centuries ago, after Tsar Ivan's rebuff to Papal offers of an alliance against the Turks. After the Livonian war and the Union of Brest, the antipathy was baked in, with the irreconcilable differences between Papism and Orthodoxy as its spiritual foundation.
Unfortunately for Russia they're situated on a huge landmass rich in resources and fertile soil. They're also a massive state with many smaller ones to their west and east. Mackinder articulated the heartland theory, control of Eurasia and therefore the world. Numerous invaders have wanted to control this land and push to the Ural mountains. Before it was Napoleon, then Hitler and now ... Yes indeed.
The ideological aspect has always been interesting, whether this was Orthodoxy or communism, but the sense of Russia's size, power and resources has always been a source of both intimidation and envy in the mind of outsiders. If Russia had taken Catholicism instead of Orthodoxy I don't think this would change much, perhaps it might make relations more harmonious if they'd managed to develop more of a democracy. Religion didn't stop Napoleon from invading his fellow Catholic neighbours and Hitler was not very keen on even Western Christianity.
This is a very interesting question, if Russia had become a Latin country with scholastic frameworks and democracy would it have harmonious relations with the West? It's very hard to tell.
Countries have always invaded one another, Europe has always been a land of war and invasion. The Livonian Order used to invade the East. There are many factors that make Russia vulnerable to invasion but her eastern position and geography are extremely unfortunate in this respect. She is also vulnerable to the Asiatic steppe as we well know.
I would suggest that both hatreds are not exclusive, and that the birth of the revolution in 1917 only made things exponentially worse in this regard. Communism may have collapsed, the Communism of Marx and Lenin perhaps, but as a Ghost it seems rather lively in the minds of some Capitalists. I would suggest to you that maybe Communism became an organic development of the 19th century's " Russian Idea" or " Russian Word" in the minds of most Russians, who reconciled it with their idea of their nation and civilization, and indeed with Orthodox Christianity, ultimately.
Indeed, I have seen it this way, unironically and with deep conviction.
I believe that the world is going to experience an earthquake, soon
The revolution of October 1917 definitely increased the inter-civilisational tensions and made Russia look even more strange in the Western mind. It was just another difference among many. I think many found it offensive, especially the way in which the Romanovs were treated.
The stigma of that choice made in 1917 was never going to go away quickly.
As far as I understand there are still many Russians who entirely reject the Soviet legacy, and many of them aren't liberals either, would this be correct?
Far be it from me to tell the Russian people what to think of their history but I will never understand the notion that the Bolshevik Revolution took Russia back to her true pre-Petrine self. The closing of churches and mass execution of priests could surely never be sanctified. I sometimes think it would have been better if they could have had Kolchak or Denikin in charge, but that's a question they will know more about and can answer for themselves. As far as I know both wanted to conduct land reform. What do you think? I think the Whites would have built up Russia and saved her from the excesses of Communism while still knocking out fascism in the '40s, although this is purely within the realm of speculation. It is notable that they did not enjoy harmonious relations with their Western allies who in the end offered them inadequate support and assistance, arguably to the point of betrayal. But still they fought on and never gave up.
The White Movement:
'We're walking on the road to nowhere.'
'Our final parade.'
'Joy and fear'.
'You have left us without hope'
annatar1914 wrote:Now, I've said things before about Orthodox Monarchy, and Socialism. Both favorably in fact and quite unironically. How does the apparent " socialism " gel with my anti Modernity stance I've consistently had? Well, it's an organic development, and isn't based on theories so much but tried and true traditions of communal experiences.
We live in the modern world and as such it will not be possible to return to pre-modernity. As a way of living in modernity the socialist economic model is probably as suitable as any other. At least it seeks to eradicate inequality between people and provides for some level of communal solidarity. It's much better than the hyper-individualistic free for all capitalism of post-modernity in which it's every man for himself, where there's no place or time for anything that doesn't have utility. Of course Marxist socialism is probably not the answer, class warfare is very dangerous.
annatar1914 wrote:Likewise with Orthodox Autocracy. Nonetheless, I have the traditional experience of the Hetmanate of the Ukrainian Cossacks and the Sobor of the Old Believer communities that also posit a solid tradition of freedom and a kind of republicanism at work, historically reflected in the Novgorod Republic of st. Prince Alexander Nevsky. And frankly, the revolutions of Stenka Razin and Emelyan Pugachev, Old Russian and Christian.
Americans could probably find this more acceptable than Orthodoxy Autocracy, they don't seem too far removed from American political traditions.
annatar1914 wrote:Just like with the East Roman Empire, the " Byzantine ". I suggest that the idea of the Third Rome, except as an expression of the Orthodox Christian Commonwealth which began in the Roman Empire, is otherwise a pernicious one. The Imperial idea always piggybacked alongside the other one, to its eventual submerging of the previous meaning, almost as soon as Sofia Paleologus married the Grand Duke of Moscovy.
But we should already know as Orthodox Christians that the Roman Emperors often were the source of or protection of the heresies which persecuted the Church for centuries well after the Pagan persecutions ended. They often tried to make Schism and Heresy universal, if not even a return to Paganism as Emperor Julian the Apostate attempted. So that being the case, why not also the Russian Emperors, the Romanovs as opposed to the Autocrat Rurikid line before them? The history doesn't speak well then of the Imperium, over in distinction against the Orthodox Christian Commonwealth.
But would you not agree that the connection to the Eastern Roman Byzantine Empire is a fundamental part of the Russian Orthodox identity?
Imperiums were unavoidable in those days, almost every polity sought to expand its borders back then.
Perhaps empires are undesirable today but in the Middle Ages they were completely normal. There was no notion of anti-imperialism in those times as far as I know.
annatar1914 wrote:But how then is this freedom loving Republican heritage considered "illiberal " or " Authoritarian " in a Modernist sense?
Because it is, being Monotheistic, insistent on a entire social and personal way of life that infuses the entire community with spiritual meaning and purpose.
It would be considered illiberal and authoritarian because the understanding of freedom is quite different. Arguably, however, the Western world of the 19th century would have been considered quite illiberal by today's standards as well.
annatar1914 wrote:The Western Modernity will of course be quite Authoritarian and illiberal over time, as it becomes more pantheistic and pagan, more hierarchical and ultimately, racialist.
Anyone who thinks Western democracy enables you to say or do whatever you please clearly has no experience of such a system. It's only in the American system where you have almost complete license, but even in America there are consequences to what someone says or does. And America itself is a historic anomaly and a very special case.
annatar1914 wrote:This is where your comment about " blessed are the poor " comes in: their enemies always reduce them to a cog in their worldview, into ciphers without moral agency or worth. How they think of and treat the poor, that's the sure dividing line.
Even the rich are not allowed to choose a different worldview or value system other than the one assigned to their class.
annatar1914 wrote:I look at it the same way I look at Tsar Peter's Great Northern War: a waste of lives and resources, trying to forcefully be part of a world that can never fully accept us, nor we them. Some are concerned about the West because they have a gravitational pull towards the West, both mimicking and also rivaling the West. Those are the elites such as Putin and the rest. Putin is from Tsar Peter's artificial Westernization city, but Russias heart is Moscow. If we have a second capital, it should not be St. Petersburg but further east in the geographic heart of the country.
It breaks my heart to think that Russia could never accept the West, for as much as Russia is her own civilisation she shares much with the Slavonic European peoples of the Catholic/Protestant world. I don't think she can ever truly be divorved from Europe, because she shares with Europe both a Slavonic and Finnic element in her ancestry and for all intents and purposes Russia is in Europe. Belarus and Ukraine are in Europe, as are cities like Pskov. I'm not asking that Russia accept Westernisation but I hope that Europe and Russia could be friends in future, that is to say a Europe that's on the straight and narrow.
This war is a tragedy and quite frankly a disgrace! Too many have died for it, it can't be justified. Even if the Ukrainians wanted to go westward that could not justify such a bloody special operation. I don't understand the behaviour of the Russian troops or why they're using such heavy handed measures. There were many other options. This isn't to say the West have taken the correct approach to the Ukraine question but the Russian response is overwhelmingly wrong. Why can't they maintain the discipline of the troops? They are behaving in a merciless fashion.
annatar1914 wrote:I think you're close to the answer here, in that the Christian has to be discerning as to the times they live in. In the beginning after 33 AD, we Christian people lived in a Pagan society, where people were exposed to the Gospel and were saved, but persecution was always a distinct possibility albeit one that was actually embraced.
Then, the State was officially converted, for a time, and the State then became a tool for heresy and schism to proliferate and attempt to dominate, and Orthodox Christians continued to be persecuted in waves. The barbarian invasions broke down the Roman Empire over time, and Orthodoxy expanded into what became Holy Rus. Then, the scenario was recapitulated over centuries with schism and societal apostasy, persecution and martyrdom.
So, " official " nikonian and sergianist Orthodoxy continues to hope for State approval and State support and favors, and risks heresy and schism as a price of conforming to the world, while the Old Believers practice the faith as it always exists and hope only in Our Lord's return, with a de facto Christian Anarchism if not de jure formal Anarchism, fine with the State if it supports or leaves the Church in peace, fine if it doesn't and Christians flee and go underground. Prayers for the rulers, but no longer necessarily expecting Christians as rulers in the present day or the future, as were likely in the final age before the Second Coming. If it does happen that Orthodoxy is renewed as a governing formal force in society, over time it still is understood that it won't last in this fallen world which will get worse and worse overall until He comes again in glory.
In the interim, Christian people form a parallel society, where people are welcome to join and be saved, but a barrier exists to prevent contamination from the world and its anti values, the return of Paganism as it was just after 33 AD. But with us living in peace with all men, and the most important government for us being our internal self government as the Church, in Sobornost.
This is the way I'm beginning to see things anyway, these days. I welcome a society informed by Christian faith, but I'm prepared to just look to myself and my loved ones, our salvation, and pray for the rest.
So yes, the most radical " black flag " of all, the renunciation of the State and the World, to Await the Ruler of All, Jesus Christ.
Any follow on discussion would be: will there be a time of chastisement followed by a period of renewed grace, in some areas? I actually can see that, but not in the West. I think both the chastisement and the grace, could be in the " Magian" cultural space: conversion of the Jews and Muslims. What is their fate prior to any collective or personal salvation? Will the true Christians live in relative peace embedded within such a cultural space? Is it " better the turban than the tiara" ?
Under any form of government there must be individual moral volition, practicing any religion is a personal affair, it can't be dependent on the state apparatus. We can hope for the best form of government possible but no government is perfect in this world.
annatar1914 wrote:I wanted to continue with what I was saying, and perhaps you can reply, that none of what I said before is inconsistent in a particular time and place with having a Orthodox Christian society and government. It could still be possible, God willing. In fact it reminds me of prophesies in which a Last Emperor rules for a generation, and who even Antichrist will fear, these legends say.
There is a lot of room for improvement. Even if we never get a perfect government or society it could still be a lot better than it is now. Just having politicians of a higher moral calibre would be help a lot. It's a sad state of affairs when someone like Trump is held up as a representation of US 'conservatism'.
Now, having said what I said, that Christian people as Christians might have to withdraw from earthly rule and accept the rule that is over them, seems hard to bear and appears to close off any political activity, living as a minority in a sea of non Christians.
But that is not quite the case, maybe. Perhaps there is a place where we can make a stand and still be a light and an example to the nations. The Church in the Wilderness. The Camp of the Saints. I suggest that this is the actual alternative, and that there a just and righteous political and social economic system can operate, under the wisdom of the Church and her long experience in dealing with mankind as we are, imperfect sinners.
I think everyone knows what part of that system would be, in my opinion. Every time the Church can and could, she operated under a variation of that system.
There is a risk that people would blame the church for political problems under such a system. Whenever the church becomes too closely involved in politics the people blame her for their problems. I would not want to dirty the hands of the church with such a messy business as politics. The revolution of October 1917 was anti-clerical, many priests were martyred and the Bolsheviks tore down churches.
annatar1914 wrote:Second, I think that unfortunately your idea on the Christian position on riches, wealth, etc...is very off the mark. Our Lord in Scripture asks the wealthy young man to sell everything he had, and follow Him, as the very ideal of Christian perfection.
And also in the Gospel, in Luke chapter 14, a certain man in the crowd asks Our Lord to render a verdict in a property case with his brother, to which He replied: " man, who made Me a Judge and a DIVIDER over you?" and proceeds to comment on covetousness and materialism.
I could go on, with Scripture quotes and writing from the Church Fathers and the Orthodox Saints, on Monasticism and Asceticism, that make it clear that property and riches are actually a hindrance to seeking and finding eternal life.
Critics of Christianity themselves, like Neitzsche and Ludovici and others on the atheist " Right " make it abundantly obvious that the concept of Socialism came from Christianity.
And hard work, enterprise and thrift, are virtues that are not alien to the Christian life in any case anyway. Just that the objective of these efforts are ordered and not misplaced.
But when Christ told us to sell all our riches and follow Him was this not different to selling the riches and building socialism? Because following Christ and following the Communist Party are two different roads.
I'm only raising this because I'm highly skeptical of attempts to try and associate religions with secular political creeds, as well as trying to super impose modern ideas on ancient times. It makes me think of red priests and the Stalinist attempt to co-opt the Orthodox faith for communism, or even of the 'Positive' Christianity of the Third Reich.
When people say, "You should vote this way because Christ would have voted this way," it's highly dubious. Who is anyone to speak of Christ in such a flippant way? And I'm not accusing you of this, by the way.
annatar1914 wrote:Of course the wealthy Planter class of the American south and the wealthy Mercantile class of New England both recieved educations heavily infused with Greco Roman culture, history, and philosophy. One might say that they constituted what one called a " Republic of Letters" which made them " Citizens " of a certain worldview. And as such, searching for a set of justifications for their increasingly rebellious attitude toward their government, they found it in this pagan literature.
So this is what America is built on, the happiness of the individual, and the inference or assumption that this would contribute to the collective good of all. This too had Pagan roots, but was mediated in English literature (contemporary with the English colonial period)through the writing of first Bernard de Mandeville and then Adam Smith. And this can be inferred to be an essentially utilitarian and hedonistic calculation of individual happiness, when one reads Hobbes and John Locke, definitely influential with Colonials like Thomas Jefferson.
It's a happiness that isn't sustainable. There is no happiness as a state of permanent being. In fact there's a lot of selfish and negative behaviour carried out in the name of happiness. Men walk away from their wives and children because they think they'll get a greater happiness with someone else. The appeal to happiness as the ultimate purpose of life leads to all sorts of misery. This is of course the post-modern understanding of happiness. Honour and duty will lead to happiness, being a good loving person will lead to happiness, but happiness will never be static, it will always come and go. Life has its ups and downs, bitter and sweet and no life is perfectly happy. Happiness has become 'me first' to the detriment of other people and society, people want a maximum unceasing happiness which is simply not possible. To be quite frank and earnest I look at the state of the world and want to cry. But there is always hope and we must never give up hoping for a better future.
I think that loving others will always make us sad. Love will always hurt us because we worry about those we love.
annatar1914 wrote:And in the interim, struggle to change the inner person. This struggle alone and also in conjunction with a community of like minded persons, constitutes what is a whole way of life, the actual way to eternal life, and this is what I want to see preserved. But that's in God's hands, not mine, although I know that He is merciful and all good and loves mankind. Yet also He is the just Judge of all.
This is ultimately what it comes down to.
annatar1914 wrote:We were talking about the City, and Sin and its transmission, and the Giants (of yesterday and today before and after the Flood, leaving open for now the theories of party non human origin)... So now I will speak gingerly around the central tenets of the Christian faith and make some remarks about how very Middle Eastern It truly is. Or rather, later comments will hopefully illuminate how a universally valid Monotheism must be at the same time pined down as to actual people in time and space.
It can usually be broken down like this:
People were in a state of ignorance and sin, the Christ appeared, and a Faith came into being. It is prophesied that eventually people will return to a state of ignorance and sin collectively speaking, before Our Lord returns.
Therefore, the Modern Age itself constitutes a kind of proof of the validity of the Monotheistic and Magian worldviews, with the only real determination to be which of the religions of that cultural grouping happen to be actually true, since the common cultural assumptions concerning linear time and cosmological conditions are shared by all within Monotheism/Magian belief and ( unfortunately ) by nobody else.
Special attention should be paid more to the teachings of certain Church Fathers (specifically Tertullian, Tatian, and Minucius Felix for starters, two Semites and one of unknown origin) who exemplify the Magian ideas and who critique the broader non Christian civilization, in contrast to Fathers who (while entirely correct in their teachings and who write still on negative and apophatic theology) only deal with the specific problems raised in their era and not as much the more universal eschatological and cosmological dimensions of their faith.
In any case, this is pretty much what I have written elsewhere. Sunk in ignorance, the world makes its decisions based on force and opinion, fear and desire, the animal spirits we possess along with a dormant and damaged " Nous", means that the substances of Sin and of Death (transmitted via sexual physical generation and conception) abide in the world seemingly forever. So the answer to the problem, source of all others, lie not with man but with the Son of Man, born of the Woman made pure and incorrupt and free from sexual physical conception. Of this I will touch upon more later, traducianism and ancestral/original sin.
Faith is most certainly a choice, we can choose whether or not we believe. Perhaps people are terrified of the existential heaviness of such questions? They are afraid to think of all of this. People simply don't want to think or read. Hence as you say, they are subject to force, opinion, fear and desire without a framework or reference point to ground themselves in. That's truly the sign of an uneducated person, but unfortunately there are many who live through television, their life is mundane post-modern popular culture. They don't even possess any sort of basic human graces and that's a sign of a society in decline, a society that forgets its own cultural mores that were common only 60 or so years ago. You see, a belief in something immaterial, that doesn't have utility in and of itself is fundamental to the cultivation of the human person. The way the world and especially the West is going reduces all questions of life merely to those of utility, and as such there is a type of Shestovian Necessity to this utility, because utility is by its very definition material. We become soulless robots and hence the level of culture decreases, the level of civility between people decreases. I understand very well the effects of such de-culturisation of the masses. People are even forgetting how to speak English! It's as though people are forming a new culture and nationality within their own country, completely divorced from their own traditions and social mores. I'm not speaking about immigration, but I mean people who are so divorced from any rootedness in any past. They live in popular culture, that's all they know. As I've said before, this is the real barbarism (used in a pejorative sense), the barbarism of post-modern non-culture.
annatar1914 wrote:With my previous post in mind, the first consideration is that even the most diabolical and depraved have to be organized, and capable of some level of natural gifts and skills which most people would recognize as something good, even though that bar keeps getting lower and lower it remains a useful criterion for even worldly success.
"Giants " have those gifts to a super abundant degree. But one of those gifts is the ability to mold and shape people's perception of reality. Religion is one of those tools which allows a Giant to persuade even " good " people to accept questionable behavior from said Giants. With the looming spectre of nuclear war, there will be men who persuade and are persuaded to " rise" to the acceptance of their use in war as a strategic part of the battle against their enemies.
Anyone who can contemplate the use of nuclear weapons is a truly sick person, especially when they understand the implications of MAD and are still willing to use them anyhow. It would be a simultaneous act of mass murder and mass suicide. It's a truly sickening proposition and makes me question just how 'civilised' humanity really is.
annatar1914 wrote:But to fully revel in the use of this terror as a weapon for total submission or destruction, even a Giant still needs a popular justification for said use. Secular justifications aren't enough. Therefore, the use of such weapons will not arise from a secularized and decadent civilization as such, but from those with a religious justification.
Where is this justification today, what source can expedite the means of the expression of the Will to Power of a would be ruler of men, of the drive to total war and complete submission to the new reality shaped into being by such a ruler?
People would not need any great cause to justify their use. The great masses of people in any country can be propagandised by their press and and teleivision to accept any cause. Whether here or over there people just get fired up into jingoistic hysteria. Remember Cuba in 1962, it was only President Kennedy who opposed the war, whereas most of those around him, and the entire American political class and press were in favour of an invasion. Just like now there was the idea thrown around that the Soviets were bluffing and would never use their nuclear weapons. It's very easy to underestimate how stupid and detached the average person can be. I remember the start of the COVID-19 pandemic how most people refused to believe it would ever reach our shores, it's similar today. I think it was Aldai Stevension who said something along the lines of people thinking he was a coward for not wanting to invade Cuba but also that it's good to have a coward in the room when discussing the prospect of nuclear war.
annatar1914 wrote:Note that I do not believe that propaganda is power. I do not believe that a "proper " use of "optics" is power. In this world, physical force is power. And only physical might, with a superior spirituality animating it and giving it directions, can overcome physical power alone. Might is Right versus Right is Might.
Sadly the people in power don't seem to think twice before using force. They simply don't think or care about how it affects the common people.
annatar1914 wrote:Friends, I wanted to briefly touch upon a theological reflection dear to my heart, because it causes rage to the demons and sets at naught the worldly standards of what I've been calling the Giants, with their physical and mental excellence, standards of aesthetic quality and beauty. Certainly a Neitzsche or Ludovici or a Evola, etc...would be mortified by what I suggest. Maybe even many Christians.
Celsus in the 2nd century voiced the common belief that Christ was short and ugly in appearance. This is actually believed by some of the early Church Fathers as well, that Christ was a small Man of ignoble appearance, even perhaps a dwarf of less than five feet in height.
I can see Him too as dark and stocky , bronzed from the sun and certainly not Aristocratic in His looks or bearing. St. Paul's " form of a Slave " .
I think my Lord Is of this appearance, the Son of Man. A small even tiny Man, dark and humble in His looks.
I contrast this with the idealized perfection of form, the triad of the " true" and the "good" and the " beautiful " , that the Olympian gods and Titans, the Mighty Men and Heroes of old, signified.
I take great comfort in this God of the widow and the orphan, the weak and lowly and sick and poor, of the common people who do not exemplify anything particularly special in the world. The " failures " and marginal, outcasts, the Other. He is no Giant's god, and yet in His paradoxical Omnipotence, He sets them all to foolish rout: " My God is a Man of war"....
Why are the great and mighty, the rich and wise and gifted folk so put off by them, and Him? That's an interesting further reflection in itself: " why do the Heathen rage, and plot against the Lord and His Christ?"
And " Kiss the Son lest He be angry..." as Judas Iscariot did apparently fulfill in at least mockery. 30 pieces of silver, the price of a lowly slave..
This is very interesting. Christ did not come only for those who are good looking or mighty, He did not come to exalt worldly power and did not call any to a Master Morality. He came to this earth for the salvation of all humanity, of every living soul.