Thursday, October 25, 2012

Growing Catholic paranoia.

In two generations my successor will be martyred in a public square. The third generation will help rebuild our shattered civilization like the church has done so many times in the past.

This is the extraordinary claim by Cardinal Francis George of Chicago who apparently believes the growing secularization of American culture will bring religious, especially catholic, persecution and the collapse of American society.  Secularism he said is just “communism’s better-scrubbed bedfellow.”

The reason why we are on this slippery slope towards oppression and self-destruction is "the world divorced from the God who created and redeemed it inevitably comes to a bad end".

History is the proof :  “We don’t have to imagine such a world; the 20th century has given us horrific examples of such worlds,” he said. He denounced the violence of “the nation state gone bad” which claims an absolute power to decide questions and make laws “beyond its own competence.

Can the Cardinal name just one century free from slaughter and bloodshed? An even causal glance through a history book will show continuous slaughter much of it inspired by religious identity politics. The establishment of Christian America and the various Christian colonies was hardly good news for the natives who were nearly wiped off the face of the earth. If the world is maintained by the will of God, how can be divorced from God?

But it's interesting how the Cardinal uses the term 'secularization'. The word secularism is used in two ways : 1) to mean a state that accommodates all faiths or none and 2) an absence of religion or hostility to religion.

Most humanists groups, political active atheists etc seek to promote the former. Religious people for the most part don't object to a religious neutral state if only to prevent religious conflict.

However those who prefer a mono cultural religious state or those whose livelihood and political power depend upon religious institutions use secularism in the second sense for rhetorical and ideological reasons. For the most part, they have succeeded in poisoning the meaning of the word. It's now no longer clear which form of secularism they are attacking. Both forms I suspect to better mobilize those who do not object to 1). The Cardinal however goes one step further by linking secularism to communism.

I always found it strange that Roman Catholics object so much to state control when they themselves are ruled from a city-state lacking even the most rudimentary system of checks and balances. The only conclusion I can draw is they want to be ruled by the Vatican state and not the democratic secular state.    The secular state is a threat to their power and their rule.

Nevertheless I think I'll take my chances with the secular state.

Full quote :-
“I am (correctly) quoted as saying that I expected to die in bed, my successor will die in prison and his successor will die a martyr in the public square,” the cardinal wrote.

However, he said the reports left out his last phrase about the bishop who succeeds a possible martyr: “His successor will pick up the shards of a ruined society and slowly help rebuild civilization, as the Church has done so often in human history.”

The cardinal said he was trying to express “in overly dramatic fashion” what the “complete secularization” of society could bring. [link]






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