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Author Topic: Our Secular Theodicy
Brad-
Nelson
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Brad Nelson
Post Our Secular Theodicy
on: December 4, 2017, 09:13
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This is an article by Matthew Rose that I don’t recommend reading. He’s gone all “academic” and made the thing about four times longer than he needed to: Our Secular Theodicy. When I recommend an article, I want you to read it because it’s worthwhile. This one is just too damn long.

However, the gist of it is encapsulated in this quote from the article:

The politics of gender, sexuality, race, and immigration are increasingly eschatological. Their power and appeal depend on the belief that they advance a liberating moral narrative, inspiring a secular Exodus that will lead to a secular Pentecost. That is why they see history as moving in a single moral direction. It is not because they are determinists. On the contrary, history must progress toward greater individual freedom and social equality because any other outcome threatens the moral intelligibility of history itself. The stakes could not therefore be higher. Should the next emancipatory chapter fail to be written—or should a future Trump or Brexit alter its forward flow—it would not be a mere disappointment. It would interrupt a story that justifies their deepest commitments, and the theodicy in which they are engaged.

First thing (pun intended), let’s not mock that idea. Christianity is a different type of hope, a different type of eschatology, a different type of “end of history.” But we might better understand the Religion of Leftism and the increasing transformation of Christianity to accommodate the Left’s eschatology if we understand the ideas that underly both of them.

Who can doubt that technology, in particular, points away from the ancient cyclical beliefs regarding history and to progress? Forget the results that may come from technology, which might be ambiguous. The technology itself is ever-improving.

The other aspects of constant and ever-upward social progress are perhaps more ambiguous. On the Left, they see the total equality of women (even to the point of erasing differences with men…or erasing men, if need be), the elevation of homosexuality and all sexual variants (even if completely made up), open borders, and the end of the family as the central unit of society as on a steady arrow of progress. What a conservative notices (at least a few of us) is that this sort of “progress” seems as likely to produce Harvey Weinsteins and Matt Lauers than an actual improved humanity.

That is, a conservative doesn’t deny that there can be a better match of human behavior with, say, The Ten Commandments. And it is our duty to try to improve our relationship with our fellow men, to take care of the weak and suffering, and to build that Winthropian “city on a hill,” as a beacon to others.

The idea of steady improvement is not foreign to conservatives or authentic Christians, but the emphasis is not on perfecting society but in improving (if not exactly perfecting) oneself. To do otherwise is to build any “perfect” society upon sand for no system of government can replace (let alone produce) a virtuous people.

It’s often said the conservatives have a more pessimistic view of human nature. I would call it a realistic one. It’s hopeful but careful. It’s a revolutionary stance regarding transforming the human soul — which can and does happen daily — but never supposes that a government action or mandate is ever the same thing. In government, the lies just tend to be bigger.

A conservative and authentic Christian is not without larger and effusive hopes and a view of where we were yesterday and where we hope to be tomorrow. But I would say we are less naive about our expectations. If the earth warms or cools, we don’t freak out about it. Our world view is not maniacally tied to Constant Human Progress as it is with the Left. And that’s really what “climate change” is all about. The material Utopianists have included the weather under the umbrella (if you will) of things they deem subject to constant progress.

I’ve made just a minor dent in the subject. Perhaps you should read the entire article after you are done watching that coat of paint on the wall dry. This is a huge topic.

Timothy-
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Post Re: Our Secular Theodicy
on: December 4, 2017, 11:18
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The Patriot Post has a weekly roundup of conservative cartoons, and this week's is quite good. It includes several dealing with transgender and transracial issues. The link is:

https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/?hl=en#inbox/16022e922f294324

pst4usa
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Post Re: Our Secular Theodicy
on: December 4, 2017, 17:11
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Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity. Ecclesiastes 1 English Standard Version (ESV).
They might as well have said Entropy of entropy! All is entropy. As these moron pursue self destruction, does this not look like what takes place in the real world as opposed to the leftist fantasy world of Darwinism. A pile of stuff, does not magically turn into a computer, the same can be said for a civil society. If you tear down truth, and make it objective truth, destroy right and wrong, good and evil, male and female you are essentially introducing chaos and allowing it to define societies reality; no order, no structure, what is right and true for you may not be right and true for me, sounds like entropy to me.

Brad-
Nelson
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Brad Nelson
Post Re: Our Secular Theodicy
on: December 6, 2017, 09:37
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A pile of stuff, does not magically turn into a computer, the same can be said for a civil society.

That’s an interesting way of looking at it, Pat. Now that you mention it, the same mindset that believes matter will self-organize into an amazing system of micro-machines believes a people will also self-organize into a secular utopia if we just keep “evolving” society, thus the great faith they have in the watchword of “forward.” As long as things are changing, even if we encounter minor setbacks, the more progress we must be obtaining.

As for the questions of right and wrong, good and evil, those issues have been debated forever. But perhaps for the first time in America’s history have we so self-consciously set aside the idea of blind justice and substituted justice based upon race, sex, etc. We are reduced to various sets of competing tribes with no common ideas or goals. One cannot reason with these tribes. One can only ever buy them off.

Timothy-
Lane
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Post Re: Our Secular Theodicy
on: December 6, 2017, 09:56
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Well, tribalism has probably dominated human history. The Enlightenment was a blow against this which held up for over 2 centuries, but now it seems to be disappearing (except for the secularism).

Brad-
Nelson
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Brad Nelson
Post Re: Our Secular Theodicy
on: December 6, 2017, 12:08
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Timothy, I don’t think “the Enlightenment” is much more than a liberal fiction. It’s trumpeted by the Left because “the Enlightenment” first and foremost represents a split from biblical concepts of morality. The “Dark Ages” are thereby also presented as far more darker than they ever were, if they were particularly dark at all.

We can debate if the Christian religion squelched human aspirations too much or, by applying necessary restraints, gave us all that much more freedom and prosperity. But there is no question at all in my mind that modern man looks back to “the Enlightenment” at that moment when “reason” replaced “superstition.”

I have no use for the word anymore. To the extent I’ve ever used it positively, I now repent and ask forgiveness.

It pisses me off no end that the liberal pimps and the easily-bamboozled skulls-full-of-mush (never second-guessing their Marxist college professors while lecturing the rest of us on how we need to be unbiased and “open”) forward the narrative that these precious Snowflakes, from whose asses moonbeams radiate, are beyond such primitive things as myths, mere beliefs, superstitions, and most of all, religion — all while they fall for completely baloney beliefs such as global warming and involve themselves thoroughly in racism such as “white guilt.”

Absolutely B.S. and poppycock. I have no use for the word anymore. Hey, I’m as glad as anyone that Michelangelo existed and did his great works. The same regarding Leonardo. And there’s always something to be said to not being too beholden to convention for convention’s sake. Fine. Agreed. No argument there. But the destructive Snowflakes and their legions of useful idiots have now made “unconvention for unconvention’s sake” their watchword and with dire results.

As for tribalism, it was under the Christian umbrella, and only the Christian umbrella, where blossomed the idea that we are all God’s children and that superficial traits such as skin color, or even one’s sex, were not, and should not be, the central axis for determining human value.

Timothy-
Lane
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Post Re: Our Secular Theodicy
on: December 6, 2017, 12:23
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U think the era of Adam Smith (who wrote on moral philosophy as well as economics) was an enlightened era, though not as enlightened as they thought it was. And it's interesting that modern leftism now rejects all of it except for the secularism.

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