RS 31: Christianity Gone Full Circle

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Jul 22, 2001, 1:39:27 PM7/22/01
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RS 31: Christianity Gone Full Circle

CHRISTIANITY GONE FULL CIRCLE

OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

Lawrence A. Starr
OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

Organized religion is a powerful force within society. It binds people
together through faith, fellowship, and a body of ideas a citizenry. It also
has a unique political value in controlling and directing that citizenry,
and as such is one of the establishing pillars of the modern liberal state.
To the ancient Greeks, their mythology or their religion was one that sought
to give rational explanation to natural phenomena. It was an attempt by men
to escape from a primitive world ruled by the terrifying monsters and demons
of irrationality. Later in pagan Rome the multi-theistic religion was one
that sanctified glory and action, and thus primarily exalted soldiers and
public men. Its Gods and Goddesses were supported and legitimized by awesome
public ritual which solidified and validated the power of the state.

It is no coincidence that Rome, the Eternal City and conqueror of much of
the known world, should have an outward-looking indigenous religion
worshipping strength and glorifying power. Christianity, on the other hand,
is a religion honoring simple, lowly men who have fled from the world. It
prizes suffering and humility, and attracts as its congregation the meek and
the anguished. Its rites are therefore subdued rather than magnificent, its
doctrine one of mysticism and the "other-worldly."

It is similarly no coincidence that Christianity, quintessentially a
religion of the East, should have presided over the collapse of a Western
Empire grown weak through alien-inspired intrigues and decadence. No better
proof of Christianity's early political power exists than that of the
Emperor Constantine, who was indebted to the Christians who had become a
power with in the Imperial Roman bureaucracy - literally a state within a
state. After the defeat of Maxentius, and later the co-Emperor Licinius,
Constantine paid this debt by legitimizing Christianity throughout the
Empire, giving it special legal rights and large financial donations.

With the establishment of Christianity in the Roman Empire, heresy came to
be considered a crime against the state, punishable by civil law.
Constantine used these sweeping powers to purge the Gnostics and other
Christian sects such as those that considered the Old Testament an account
of an evil god's efforts to keep humanity immersed in ignorance and the
material world and to punish their attempts to acquire knowledge. He finally
relocated the Empire's seat from Rome to its more fitting location in the
Middle-Eastern city of Byzantium, the city which would later become
Constantinople.

Empowered with the trappings of Imperial might, the Christian church of
Constantinople closed the Lyceum, the teaching academy established by
Aristotle. Like Plato's Academy, the Lyceum had sought to further the
pursuit of rationality, nurturing these ideals for some eight hundred years.
Yet Christianity's purges were not aimed solely at the destruction of
Classical learning; they sought to exterminate all ideas deemed heretical.
This sweeping war against other systems of belief emerged from the Roman
church as well. Taking action in the North, they warred against the pagan
tribes, culminating in the 772 destruction of the Irminsul of the
Anglo-Saxons.

Prior to this, throughout much of Northern Europe, a pre-Christian tradition
of vibrancy and simple wisdom flourished, independent of the Classical
cultures. Both individualistic and particularistic in nature, having no
surviving books of worship, and lacking any rigid dogma, this religion was
the preferred belief among our Germanic and Nordic forbears. Today we call
it Asatru.

The Gods and Goddesses of Greece and Rome are immortal and invincible. The
Northern Gods are neither, nor without flaw. Yet it is only in imperfection
that we find the true heroic nature; if one is always assured of victory,
then there is nothing that must be overcome. Without fear there can be no
courage. It is in overcoming the self, in embracing death rather than
suffering defeat, that real heroism lies. It was such stern stuff, such
unattainably valiant standards, that nourished these robust peoples for
untold centuries.

Shared by pagan religions of North and South was a belief that the Gods were
"a portion of life itself, as the flowers are a part of the thyrsus."
Indeed, the pagans found life and spirit in everything. Rejecting dualism
which came to Christianity from Judaism, and which originated in the tenets
Zoroastrianism, life for the pagans was in whole neither evil nor good. Just
as death is a necessity for life, so too are all things a natural part of
ourselves and thus we share a certain kindredness with nature.

Plato, like most early pagans, was quite tolerant of others' internalized
beliefs. Unlike him, Christianity and the people that spawned it saw the
world in terms of "them" and "us." The "them" were branded as heretical,
(from the Greek hairesis, "choosing for oneself") and on that account
personified as evil. Correspondingly, the good were those who accepted the
official dogma, which thus encompassed only the chosen, the true believers.

Christianity's introduction into the Boreal lands came at a much later date
than did its conquest of the Classical civilizations. The occupation was, in
addition, much more brutal, with kidnapping, torture and mass execution
among the common methods of conversion. Many of the outbreaks of
"devil-worship," commonly punished by burning at the stake and other inhuman
methods of execution, were in reality the suppression of simple peasants
attempting to practice their age-old traditional religious beliefs. Such
persecutions were deemed acceptable because the non-believer or heretic was
dehumanized as being one of "them" and thus evil incarnate. The philosopher
Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel observed that "Christianity has emptied Valhalla,
felled the sacred groves, extirpated the national image as a shameful
superstition, as a devilish poison, and given us instead the imagery of a
nation whose climate, laws, culture and interest are strange to us and whose
history has no connection whatever with our own. A David or Solomon lives in
our popular imagination, but our country's own heroes slumber in learned
history books."

In fact, it is truly astonishing how, throughout Northern Europe, the early
records, the traditions, the songs and stories were obliterated by the
priests of Christianity. A few fragments survived: Beowulf in England, the
Nibelungenlied in Germany and most importantly the Icelandic Eddas. These
few fragments were augmented by the persistence of half-forgotten pagan
traditions such as Easter - the festival of Ostara, the Goddess of Spring -
and Yule, a mid-Winter festival of rebirth. Then there were the days of the
week: Tuesday, after the God of War Tiu; Wednesday, after the God Wodan or
Odin; Thursday, after the God of thunder, Thor or Donar. Only through these
and hundreds of other vaguely remembered but once sacred traditions has the
belief that molded the Northern European peoples survived what may well be
the greatest cultural holocaust in the history of the human race.

We see many explanatory methods that attempt to legitimize Christianity's
evolution from alien infiltrator to native bastion. The usurpation of pagan
practices and their alteration into Christian ones was a widely used tactic.
Another is found in early Christian art iconography, which sought to teach
pre-literate adherents through visual presentation. For example, the
representation of the sheep as the "lamb of God" harkens back to the ancient
Greco-Roman representation of Philanthropy. The young, vital, and leafed
branch representing the Church props up the roof in many manger scenes. It
bears the weight of the collapsed pillar of decadence, representing the
earlier Temple from which it evolved, yet deceptively pretends to reject.

Other non-colonized communities can look far back into pre-history knowing
that their beliefs are the evolutionary product of their own culture; and
note with confidence that they worship their own Gods. In the West and in
spite of a thousand-plus years of forced integration, we today experience a
certain anomie, resultant from the profound break in the continuity of our
historic, but now largely forgotten, past. Not unlike the dispossessed
American Indian or Negro slave, we too have been taught to worship another's
God.

The French skeptic Montaigne, always a harsh opponent to all forms of
dogmatism, saw Christianity as a deviation from the enlightenment of the
Classical civilizations. Other scholars have attempted over the years to
explain away its anti-Western foundations. Machiavelli attempts to attribute
the anti-life aspects of the religion to those who would define Christianity
in terms of ease (líozio) rather than vital action (la virt~). Nietzsche
goes them all one better and forcefully (but prematurely) states that "Gott
ist Tot."

Today, Christianity has certainly outlived most of its major critics. In
fact, it is arguably the fastest growing religion in the world. Most
Westerners would, of course, find this a ludicrous statement. They look
around and see the old neighborhood church, with its once vibrant European
congregation, gone. The building's now housing a drug counseling half-way
house, a "planned parenthood" abortion advocacy group or, in parts of the
world where oligarchic government has sold out to the "one-world" cabal, a
Buddhist temple or Islamic mosque.

The church, however, has continued its proselytizing using the same
tried-and-true tactics that made its missionary service such an invaluable
vanguard for colonialism and capitalism, namely, following demographic
trends. It thus seeks its "market share" among the Third World's people.
Christianity today continues its conversions, myopically self-assured that
it is (as in the past) bringing civilization to the savages. As a result,
Christianity has made tremendous inroads into the Third World. These
incursions are not widely known to most Western parishioners and laymen,
except perhaps by way of the endless TV appeals for more dollars for the
little starving children. These children are somehow always "over there" and
curiously didn't seem to be starving until the introduction of that very
religion which so solicitously seeks their salvation.

Today, in China, there are 40 or 50 million Christians - more than in Great
Britain or France. The Philippines contain some 60 million, and in Brazil,
with a population of 160 million (1993 estimate), some 88 percent or 140
million are Catholic, with an additional 5 million Protestants. Even in
India, whose Malabar Christian community is said to have been founded
amongst the Aryan Brahmans by St. Thomas, Christianity is growing most
dramatically despite increased Hindu resistance. It is particularly strong
amongst the Harijan caste, the so-called Untouchables who were the
Dravidians, the aboriginal inhabitants of the sub-continent.

Currently, six countries of the world have populations of 200 million or
more. Demographers estimate that in another century there will be fourteen
such countries, overwhelmingly in Africa and Asia. Indeed, present
projections indicate that by this time Nigeria alone will have over 500
million people. At present, around 40 percent of Nigerians are Christian,
with Islam and traditional religions being practiced by the remainder of the
population. Even as we speak, in West Africa the people have erected a
church, one of the largest in the world, whose size, if not beauty, rivals
that of St. Peter's in Rome.

Thus we find that in spite of its decline in Western Europe and North
America, Christianity's growth in Africa and Asia has more than compensated
for this loss. In this last century the Church has therefore made
astonishing advances both in terms of its total numbers and its geographical
spread. Catholicism today claims one billion adherents, with the various
other Christian sects collectively claiming nearly as many. Clearly, such
demographic changes will radically alter the entire concept of Christianity
as we now know it.

Traditional thinkers see Christianity as the perennial defender of Western
civilization. And since Christianity so effectively crushed its opposition
centuries ago, and since we therefore have little in the post-Classical
world to contrast it with, its defenders are by default correct. Any
analysis of "what might have been" must of necessity be relegated to the
world of supposition, or at worst, immerse itself in the realm of fantasy.

In more modern times, philosophers and pundits have seen in Christianity an
enduring bastion, a great wall of defense against the secular religion of
Communism. It is in one sense difficult not to see all major religions as
defenders of their respective civilizations, standing as they have in
opposition to a world view whose major tenet is the destruction of all
traditional cultures. However, it is well to remember that both Christianity
and Communism share major doctrinal similarities. Both are universalistic
and, though more pragmatic on the collectivistic-individualistic scale,
Christianity is still basically collectivist in nature.

Capitalism, that other system of economic reductionism, has been both the
beneficiary and more recently the whipping boy for Christianity. Global
Capitalism, like Communism, is rightly seen as undermining national
sovereignty, community and family - but it has in the West, more often than
not, Capitalism has been irrevocably tied to Christianity, particularly
during its era of colonial expansionism. However, during most of the 20th
century, Capitalism has been the beneficiary of Christianity's influence
more as a reaction to the excesses of Communism than as a natural ally. It
may well be that Christianity's opposition to these systems is based less
upon the defense of traditional values, and more upon the preservation of
its own privilege.

The analogy of Christianity as the palm tree, with orthodoxy the old and
withered branches below, and heresy the new growth above is a compelling
one - religion evolves. Unfortunately, those who view the world from within
the box of their orthodoxy do not see this evolution, but are like the
victims of hysterical blindness; they simply can not see the world beyond
the confines of their self-imposed spiritual veil.

The reality beyond the veil is that demographic changes are altering the
world. From India to Hong Kong to South Africa, Western civilization is in
retreat. In opposition, the moral relativism of modern Christian dogma
argues that this is desirable. Be that as it may. The unique world view and
the civilization that provided a vehicle for Christianity, and upon which
our shared moral principles of human rights and freedoms are based, is found
in the West, and will not survive the destruction of the societies which
gave rise to these principles.

Whether or not the last 2000 years has ultimately been for good or ill is a
question that will remain open for debate. There can be little argument that
Christianity has been the vehicle for many things, riding on the same tracks
as that vibrant thing we call Western civilization. However, as a result of
the successes of "liberation theology" advocated by Marxist "theologians"
like Herbert Aptheker, and the religion's intrinsically universalistic and
collectivistic nature, Christianity generally and Catholicism particularly
seems destined to become a religion not of the West, but of the Third World.

The fabulously wealthy but numerically shrinking West is a society not
unlike ancient Rome. Although made weak and decadent by internal
malignancies, it is still the enviable repository of human values, freedoms,
and rights. Some of these ideals have evolved from Christianity; many more
were inspired by pagan traditions. Irrespective of their source, our society
and its traditions may well find itself confronted and challenged by an
envious and resentful Third World proletarian - not waving the red flag of
communism, but the banner of Islam and Christianity.

This may finally prove to the remnants of Christian egalitarians the truth
of the cliché, "Be careful what you wish for, because it might just come
true." The rest of us, the Hyperborean people who are so resented because of
our innate ability to think rationally and create scientifically, needn't
worry; we will have long since been consigned to the Inquisitional fires of
supernatural ignorance and politically-correct dogma.

This appears to be the inevitable, and tragically among many modern
Christians, the secretly desired end. Perhaps the Africans and Asians will
fare better. It will after all be a journey gone full circle, with
Christianity returning as it were to the lands and peoples of its birth.

<<< GoD >>>

unread,
Jul 22, 2001, 2:14:06 PM7/22/01
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i will pass by your christian church
my fingers fresh with shit
having recently entered them deep into my rectum
i will wiggle those smelly fingers
in your pot of holy water
then i will smirk
watching those behind me
dabble this shitty water
onto their faces
and some onto their lips

religion is beauitful

muahahahahaha

i am
GoD
--
I am the LORD thy God...
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