by Tim Jones 6/8/16
Progressivism is an Imposter that Fabricated a Secular Religion. It is an Ideology that Has Usurped Christian values and morality. • Today’s self-help books are nothing but cheap facsimiles of the Bible, the original “self-help” book in that it prescribed how to live in order to gain redemption, salvation and eventual entry into heaven. Self-help books strip out the transcendent meaning of the Bible and instead instruct readers on how to find the redemption and salvation in the here and now through self-improvement in one area or another or in finding personal happiness. This is analogous to what Progressivism has done with biblical faith and morality.
The ideas of progress and Progressivism are nothing but a rip-off of Christian precepts, its teleology (a doctrine of purpose) and eschatology (the ultimate destiny of humanity). The notion of history as the ongoing development of civilization moving in a positive direction began with such notable and influential philosophers as Hegel, Marx, Comte and Max Weber, among many others in the 18th and 19th centuries. And this notion of “Progress” that evolved over time gained widespread acceptance of history moving in only one direction of constant growth, innovation and improvement in every area of society – be it economic, educational, cultural, etc. – and was destined to lead to an end-point of perfect individual happiness, equality and justice.
It became co-opted by the ideology of Progressivism into a secular version of Christianity where divine providence, revelation and intervention has been discarded and became a closed system without consideration of what might exist outside of the material world. Man replaced God by becoming gods and in turn the measure of all things. A new worldview overthrew an old one that created a new secular religion rooted in materialism, scientism and egocentrism. In the process Christian morality was inverted into man-made morality.
Rousseau lived in the mid-eighteenth century and was one of the few who were astute enough to observe what was happening with the emergence of modernity and the transition from a long era of spiritual faith to a new one dominated by progressive faith born out of reason.
“Jean-Jacques Rousseau was the first to recognize that, within modern society, what we call political ideology performs a function comparable to that served in early times by religious doctrine and that – as ideologues – scientists, men of letters, and artist now occupy a status once reserved for none but high priests.” (Soft Despotism, Democracy’s Drift: Montesquieu, Rousseau, Tocqueville and the Modern Prospect)
The following quote puts the emphasis on capitalism for impeding economic, cultural and personal development and the similarities between the old totalitarian Soviet Union and today’s populist socialists, both God-less in nature. Remove capitalism and in turn God, then everyone will realize improvement in all areas of their lives. Stalin and Occupy Wall Street Have the same view of “Self-Improvement”:
“For Stalin, a change in the ‘manner of life,’ namely, a change in the economic and political institutions, would greatly improve the human condition.
Other utopian schemes rely upon the removal of the repressive or capitalistic elements. The Occupy Wall Street movement seemed to suggest that if we could simply remove the capitalist oppressors—the top one percent—we could have a better world. Such thinking is predicated on the idea that if the bad guys are removed, the good guys will naturally thrive and create a benign society.
Why? Because the great majority of people are naturally compassionate and other-centered, but they have been oppressed by those who are selfish. By this line of thinking, all the masses need to do is grow in awareness and self-trust.”
If the arrow of time in an historical context is always pointing in a positive direction with every era being ‘better’ than the previous one, why do today’s problems always appear to be getting worse. Clearly the scientific and industrial revolutions brought on unprecedented levels of security and comfort with leisure, pleasure and acquisition becoming the preeminent values of modernity. But one only needs to be paying attention to the news on a daily basis to see that instead of problems receding with time, they only seem to be getting worse (e.g., drug addiction, crime and poverty) with a myriad of negative unintended consequences as well (e.g., behavioral problems and psychic distress). These negative indicators are always trending down while the positive indicators of “progress” (e.g, technology) always seem to be trending up, a paradox that makes the media look ridiculous in their schizophrenic reporting.
“The attraction of progressive ideology, at least in its liberal version, thus turns out to be its greatest weakness: its rejection of a heroic conception of life. The concept of progress can be defended against intelligent criticism only by postulating an indefinite expansion of desires, a steady rise in the general standard of comfort, and the incorporation of the masses in the culture of abundance … The idea of progress, according to a widely accepted interpretation, represents a secularized version of Christian belief in providence … Progress has become the working faith of our civilization.”
And from The Idea of Progress, An inquiry into its origin and growth:
“In order to advance to the city of the future we must have a force and a lever. Man is the force, and the lever is the idea of Progress. It is supplied by the study of history which displays the improvement of our faculties, the increase of our power over nature, the possibility of organizing society more efficaciously.”
When moral philosophy turned away from transcendent standards and values, and substituted them with man-made ones, it began mimicking the morality of a biblical worldview by replacing the language of religiosity with the language of secularism that discounts the fallen nature of man, evil in the world and the immutability of human nature.
Progressivism, to use a popular colloquialism, is nothing but navel gazing that’s stripped life of any mystery and suffused it with the pretensions and arrogance of its certainty of the ways things are and are becoming. Just because man has learned to manipulate and master material and visible reality, doesn’t make him the ruler of the kingdom. The faith of secular man with its idea of progress completely dismisses who created the material world, man and the laws of nature in the first place – the real Ruler of the Kingdom who remains invisible, hidden behind the curtain to believers – and replaced Christianity with its own cheap imitation. • (961 views)