See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. - James 5:7

Friday, July 08, 2011

How we got where we are today.



From Garrigou-Lagrange.
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Just trying to figure things out here.  Garrigou-Lagrange is an old timer but his brief history/analysis printed below remains true today - in fact we're living it.
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Analysis of modern errors
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The dangers of modern times are great, and the remedies to which we often have recourse are insufficient. We shall begin, therefore, by saying a few words about the need for greater faith.
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The poisonous errors in modern life are tending toward a complete dechristianization of society, a dechristianization which began in the sixteenth century with the rebirth of paganism and the reappearance of pagan pride and sensuality among Christians. This turning from Christ advanced another stage under Protestantism, which rejected the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the value of sacramental absolution and confession, the infallibility of the Church and Tradition, her teaching power, and finally, the need for observing the precepts which lead to salvation four denials which strike at the root of the Christian life. Then the French Revolution with its deism and naturalism lent a hand in the dechristianization of society: God, if He exists, is interested only in a universal ordering of things and not in individual people. Sin, therefore, is not an offense against God, but only an offense against reason which is constantly evolving. Stealing, for example, was a sin so long as the right of private property was admitted; but if, as communists hold, private property is an injustice against the community, then private property itself becomes a theft.
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Materialism...
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This spirit of revolution led naturally to liberalism, which tried to steer a middle course between the teaching of the Church and modern errors. But liberalism could reach no definite conclusions: it neither affirmed nor denied, but always made distinctions; and discussions dragged on because it could not solve difficulties which were springing from a denial of the principles of Christianity. Liberalism failed to provide a norm of conduct and it gave way to radicalism, which was even more opposed to the Church. Because it did not like the word "anti-Christian" it called itself " anticlerical." That is typical of freemasonry. But radicalism led to socialism and socialism to atheistic and materialistic communism, as found in Russia today. Attempts were made to spread communism in Spain and other countries also, and to reject religion, private property, the family, the idea of a fatherland, and reduce human life to economics, as if we had no soul, and as if religion, science, art, and rights were the invention of those who wished to keep others in subjection and, in the name of private property, possess everything themselves.
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The only effective opponent of materialistic communism is the Catholic Church.
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Nationalism cannot withstand communism. Equally powerless in the religious sphere, because it contains serious error, is Protestantism as practiced in Germany or England; for error, like a virulent disease which kills a living organism, kills any society built upon it as a foundation. Protestantism is like consumption or cancer; it slowly destroys life, because it denies the sacrifice of the Mass, confession, the infallibility of the Church, and the necessity of keeping the commandments.
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2. Their effects on everyday life
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What effect have all these errors on civil legislation? It gradually becomes atheistic. Not only does it forget the existence of God and divinely revealed law, both positive and natural, but it even enacts legislation opposed to the divine revealed law laws permitting divorce, for example, and laws establishing neutral schools, which eventually become atheistic in all three divisions: primary, secondary, and university. In these schools religion is often reduced to a more or less rationalistic history of religions in which Christianity wears the garb with which the modernist heresy dressed it, a new though higher product of the evolution of the "religious sense" which changes continually so that no dogma and no law are immutable.
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Contrary to popular opinion, divorce was always condemned and cited as an effect of the downfall of society. 
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Finally there is complete freedom of cults and religions; even impiety and irreligion have their freedom. But the repercussions of these laws on society are immeasurable laws permitting divorce, for example, which in every nation ruin thousands of families each year and leave children without real education and guidance. And so, year after year, young people who are the country's future citizens leave these atheistic schools without a grasp of any religious principles. Disordered reason, the concupiscence of the flesh, the concupiscence of the eyes, the desire for money and the pride of life take the place of Christian faith, hope, and charity. All these things form a special naturalistic system under the name of a lay or independent ethic, without any obligation or sanction. Sometimes, it is true, a small vestige of the ten commandments remains, but a vestige always liable to change. - Introduction to The Priesthood and Perfection 

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Eyes wide shut.
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Contrast what Garrigou-Lagrange wrote with this arrogant editorial in the NCR titled: Gay marriage, bishops and the crisis of leadership - mocking Archbishop Dolan: 

In reaction to the marriage vote, Dolan stretched to call up the specter of what remains of the Red menace. On his blog he wrote that in China and North Korea “government presumes daily to ‘redefine’ rights, relationships, values and natural law.” In those countries, he says, government dictates the size of families, who can live and die, and what defines marriage. “Please, not here!” he begs. The comparison, of course, is absurd on its face, a kind of hysteria that demands that someone listen when so few are.
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The vote in New York sends a strong message to Catholic leadership. The danger is not in the vote itself. The danger they face is far deeper -- a crisis of leadership and authority for which they have only themselves to blame.
- NCR
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The so-called Red menance has a new image these days - hidden in plain sight.  "Radicalism led to socialism and socialism to atheistic and materialistic communism..."  It is just not cool to call it that these days.  Hence the new anti-clericalism, masquerading as anti-patriarchy and anti-hierarchy - both inside the Church and out - is at work attempting to de-Christianize society and prove "no dogma and no law are immutable."
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"The real forces of “intolerance” were unmasked here. The caricature, of course, is that those defending traditional marriage were the right-wing bigots and bullies …As one respected columnist has observed, the problem is not homophobia but theophobia — a hatred by some of God, faith, religion, and the Church …" - Archbishop Dolan 

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Image:  'Obama 2012 Election Poster' - H/T PML

4 comments:

  1. "The poisonous errors in modern life are tending toward a complete dechristianization of society, a dechristianization which began in the sixteenth century with the rebirth of paganism and the reappearance of pagan pride and sensuality among Christians."

    I understand partially what he is saying, but doesn't this mean that he would have us eschew those aspects of Western culture that play heavily on themes and ideas from Pre-Christian mythology? What would he think of Beethoven, Shakespeare, or *shudder* Wagner? The Humanism of Erasmus? Would he condemn any and all rock and jazz music (some Catholics do)?
    Would he, like some pre-medieval and medieval moralists, pooh-pooh the notions of romantic love between man and woman, or of the nature of erotic love between husband and wife? What about dancing - so many Catholic spiritual writers seem to loathe dancing between men and woman even in its most innocuous forms - is the beauty of the Vienna waltz or a father dancing with his wife or daughter to folk music at a state fair pagan sensuality?

    On the dilemma I recently asked you about, would Garrigou-LaGrange have dealt with it harshly? (Obviously you can't answer for him :))

    See, this is why I'm confused. It's why I have this notion that pre-20th century Catholics were expected to enjoy nothing but praying the Rosary and mortifying their senses.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hmmm . . . sounds like the ramblings of a lot of sore losers.

    Peace,

    Michael

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  3. "Human progress planned as alternatives (to God's plan) introduce in justice, evil and violence rising against the divine plan of justice and salvation. And despite transitory and apparent successes, they are reduced to simple machinations destined to dissolution and failure." -- Pope John Paul II

    The only true "sore losers" will be those who have lost their souls from having departed from God's Divine Law and His infinite love in favor of the idolatry of themselves.

    Great post, Terry.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Micheal,

    The only lasting "sore losers" will ultimately be those who find themselves in hell. How very sore and so very lost they will be.

    May we find and cooperate with the Grace to follow the precepts of teh Church which will prevent us from landing such a terrible everlasting fate.

    ReplyDelete


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