Sunday, November 25, 2012

Positive Christianity: The Gospel of Socialism

The National Academy of Sciences has a plan to end the conflict over the teaching of evolution. Taking a page from Daniel Dennett's book, they want to put religions in cages. Not abolish them, you understand, just make them safe, and stop them from misinforming children about the natural world. The idea is to get anyone who still wants to believe in something to subscribe to " theistic evolution" which to the academy means that whatever some god may or may not have done, it had to have happened before the Big Bang, left no physical traces, and be indistinguishable from the random working of natural law. As the academy encouragingly points out in Science and Creationism, " Many religious persons, including many scientists, hold that God created the universe and the various processes driving physical and biological evolution."  ~ Michael Behe, author of Darwin's Black Box 
In addition to the curious redefinition of national socialism (i.e. fascism) as a right-wing mode of thought, there is linked to that the bizarre notion of the pagan Hitler being a dedicated Christian.  Hitler promoted a new brand of Christianity called "Positive Christianity." Based on the materialism of Higher Criticism, he divorced the person of Jesus from the moral and revelatory claims of the Torah and from the miraculous and divine, and reduced him to a social reformer, a social activist challenging the restrictions of society-- much like the trends in liberal Christianity and liberation theology.
"You see, it's been our misfortune to have the wrong religion. Why didn't we have the religion of the Japanese, who regard sacrifice for the Fatherland as the highest good? The Mohammedan religion too would have been much more compatible to us than Christianity. Why did it have to be Christianity with its meekness and flabbiness?" ~ attributed to Hitler by Albert Speer
Positive Christianity wasn't simply a fusion between liberal Christianity and Hitler's particular social ideology. It was a neutering of religion so that the sole moral agenda is set by the Experts, by a political priesthood.  It was religion made safe by being reduced to platitudes compatible with a state agenda.   Positive Christianity is Christianity freed of negativity, and negativity is what gets in the way of the moral order of the Enlightened, a moral order that might come into conflict with the cultural objections of the people, if the people are beholden to a different moral compass.

It is well established that the political religions of Maoism and Marxism and Nazism couldn't abide the competition with the people's religions.  Is it any surprise that most of the people that are willing to reject arguments from authority and bandwagon arguments on social/moral issues are those that have their moral compass rooted in something they don't consider man-made?  Social conservatism tends to transcend religious boundaries and find adherents even in less religious people, and yet it is more often than not religious people that are willing to put up with the ridicule and shame for standing up for their "outmoded" beliefs.  They believe that the stakes are high and that they are beholden to a higher authority than the State.

So why is it that whenever traditional mores and values are asserted or traditional religious practices are followed that the progressives whoop up the crowd about the approaching Theocracy and yet Elizabeth Warren invokes the name of Jesus freely at the Democrats' secular Abortion-palooza rally which booed down their Judaeo-Christian ties?  Ironically, it is Nancy Pelosi and Elizabeth Warren's conception of Christianity that will be nationalized and imposed on all America.  It is an drive-thru abortion-based culture that will be imposed on Catholics. Free (and private--mom and dad don't need to know) condoms and abortions for schoolchildren.  Only Positive Christianity need be affirmed in public places, thank you very much.  You can talk about Jesus as social reformer but don't invoke him for any social conservative point of view. That's hate speech.  As Dan Savage says, we can "learn to ignore the bull***t in the Bible" and only pay attention to the good stuff.  The safe stuff.  The state-approved stuff.  The stuff that is in accord with the current interpretation of the Bill of Rights.

The various problems with the progressive/collectivist interpretation of "Jesus as social reformer" deserves its own entry (or three), but much of it can be summarized by the statement: "My kingdom is not of this world."

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