I – Modernity and one’s Children

This is a letter to my children in the World of Modernism. Yes, my children, you are deep within Modernism, as the whole world is. And I am trying to contact you and trying to relate with you, as the noticeable conversational gap grows wider. There are just so many things which occur in “polite” family conversation now which just cannot be said, so many little alley ways, little entrances of talk which introduce concepts which are “no-no”s between us all. Just so sad. Normal areas of family talk become narrower, the range of common areas of family up-bringing, of anything which impinges on “values” just cannot be spoken.

I – Moderns and non-Moderns

The world has now passed into a stage now that all social and political debate involves huge impassible assumptions between Moderns and us non-Moderns, or “Traditionalists” (though I hate that term). I would call us “traddies” just old-fashioned common-sensibles.

But even “common sense” is capable of mutation by Modernity that it just becomes last season’s brand of Modernity, last year’s fashion.

I detect an underlying scepticism about anything solid, foundational, God-forbid “fundamental”, in your thoughts, yet a deep longing for justice, for goodness, for security, for abiding family solidarity, for peace, for gentleness. But if I took the trouble to inquire about where those longings have foundation, I would run into trouble with you.

And why? because Modernity has made Scepticism and Relativism almost universal. And I also detect an avoidance of anything to do with religion. Yes, I know that lapsed Catholics identify religion with guilt, but Modernity is opposed to all religious belief and is opposed to Nature itself. And that is where the main thrust of this letter is: in upholding non-religious truths, truths that confirm where you yourselves are coming from, the kind of truths you imply by your very passions about family, political and social issues. Not everything fundamental is religious …. hmm…. maybe it is? But then there is a real problem if even this is true for then you would become divorced from Nature itself – floating in a stormy sea, compass-less, and thrown about by the winds of “preference” social and political issues – one day supporting one thing and finding out that the next day that support undermined where you were yesterday.

Modernity has made politics a passion. Left versus Right, Liberal versus Conservative, Socialism versus Capitalism: all grist for the mill of seemingly endless debate in Modern society.

But there are truths which underlie reality, truths which defy Modernity to its face.

So let’s start at the beginning.

Modernity was born during the Enlightenment and gained its foothold in the success of the Revolutions of the 19th Century, and has now matured in the 21st Century.

Modernity, is where man makes his own universe, his own reality, remodels nature in his own image, and makes good and evil according to his own preferences. Modernity is where Man stands apart from Nature, and reasons for himself outside of Nature. All is rationalisation. All is made from ideal abstractions. Nothing is objective: all is subjective. And the beginning of of what Marx described as “Alienation”.

Once one enters into political debate, one is forced to argue any position from the point of view of Modernity, and the huge, deep assumptions of the Ideologies encompassing Modernity: the philosophical foundations in the rationalism of Descartes, the sceptical empiricism of Hume, and the idealism of Kant; the political and sociological foundations of Hobbes, Rousseau, and Locke; and the atheistic scientism of the Philosophes. All these foundations were laid in the 18th Century and led to the world-wide success of the French Revolutionary ideas. Everything else are ramifications of the foregoing; variations on an over-arching theme.

So, if one does not believe in the very foundational beliefs of Modernity, it is very difficult, even impossible, to enter into contemporary social and political debate, except in a very pragmatic way. But even pragmatic politics demands some over-arching end to which man is disposed. One either accepts the Ideological ends proposed by Modernity or is left wandering in a political wilderness.

Let’s look at each of the assumptions on which our society is based.

II – Modernism: The Philosophical Assumptions

Yes, I know, philosophy is a bore. One did philosophy at Uni to find truth and all one got were a whole lot of endless sceptical examinations and putting-down of one system after another. But this is a result of Modernism itself. To deny truth and refuse to examine its own assumptions.

I am aware that many discount the importance of reflecting deeply at the philosophic level. After all, scepticism is universal among our intelligentsia. The Modern does not re-examine his own philosophical roots. The famous statement of Descartes – “I think therefore I am.” – cuts man off from reality. The assumption here is that my thinking of myself makes reality, as if Man is separate from Nature – from the very things which provide contact with the conscious mind. So, Rationalism is borne.

This is quite revolutionary. Totally opposed to all philosophical thought from the beginning of mankind. It runs against common sense, against all religious belief, all cultures, all normal human responses to reality. A common sense person before Descartes would have seen himself to be part of reality, part of Nature, his own conscious existence as a given in the very act of thinking, dependent on the holistic act of thinking, not separating the person from his own nature. It is a fundamental act of faith in reality each person makes. Otherwise we are all mad. And that is Modernism. Mad, seemingly reasonable, very clever.

Hume built on this: the only reality beyond my thoughts are sense data. Again, there is no fundamental reality of things, nothing but the ephemera of sense data: there is no apple, just roundness and redness! The person is divorced from objects themselves: no objects, no objective goodness, no truth, no beauty, no fundamental ground of anything – just sceptical opinion, and endless “subjective experiences” without roots.

Kant then built a huge apparatus of ideas in answer to both Descartes and Hume to justify some kind of objective reality. The result was Rationalistic Idealism. For the next 200 years, men were fascinated by the different structures one could invent from the variety of worlds of Ideas. And from which sprang the Ideologies of the 19th and 20th Centuries. Religions are not Ideologies. Ideologies are constructs of Rationalism, supposedly “free” thinkers thinking up total systems of ideas to envelop man and society. Ideologies are man-made.

So then, what we have now is a rejection of the wisdom of the Western Medieval and Ancient worlds, of the Greeks, of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, and the sustaining developments of traditional philosophy through the Middle Ages and Renaissance.

Without the underlying sustaining Christian culture and moral framework of Western society, Nietzsche told us what Modernism means, taken to its cold, logical conclusions: we are beyond good and evil, and the only thing left to us is the will to power – and those who become aware of the logical conclusions become the Superman free from all moral constraints.

And Nihilism is with us everywhere in the modern world. The best analysis of Nihilism is Fr Seraphim’s essay: Nihilism: the Root of the modern Age.

Here is a very short and inadequate summary of the presence of Nihilism in everyday people’s lives today:

Liberalism: the first step to Nihilism
First is the Liberal and Humanist world-view. This is the world-view on which our whole modern world is based upon: its technology, its markets, its legislation, its urban life-style, its preoccupations. The Liberal Humanist is at base worldly in his theology, his ethics, his politics, and in other areas truth has been weakened, softened, compromised; in all realms truth that was once absolute has become less certain, if not entirely “relative.”
…. The Liberal is undisturbed even by fundamental deficiencies and contradictions in his own philosophy because his primary interest is elsewhere. He is indifferent to the reality of Heaven and Hell, if he conceives of God as a mere idea of a vague impersonal power, it is because he is more immediately interested in worldly ends, and because everything else is vague or abstract to him. The Liberal may be interested in culture, in learning, in business, or merely in comfort; but in every one of his pursuits the dimension of the absolute is simply absent. He is unable, or unwilling, to think in terms of ends, of ultimate things. The thirst for absolute truth has vanished; it has been swallowed up in worldliness.
….Liberalism is the first stage of the Nihilist dialectic. The Liberal proclaims his love of Truth, Culture, etc., but it is empty of any end to which they lead. This emptiness calls into being Nihilist reaction. The Nihilist will assert that the Liberal’s love of Truth and aspects of the Old Order is superficial: and so it is. The Liberal world-view is sentimental, it has no depth and so the intellectual Nihilist draws out the logical consequences of the weak-kneed Liberal world-view.

Realism: the development to Nihilism
The “Nihilist” is the man who respects nothing, bows before no authority, accepts nothing on faith, judges all in the light of a science taken as absolute and exclusive truth, rejects all idealism and abstraction in favor of the concrete and factual. He is the believer, in a word, in the “nothing” – but, in the reduction of everything men have considered “higher,” the things of the mind and spirit, to the lower or “basic”: matter, sensation, the physical.
The Realist questions everything, but only to be able to abolish all suggestion of or aspiration to anything higher, and to reduce and simplify it into the terms of the most obvious and “basic” explanation. The Realist sees only “race” or “sex” or the “mode of production.”
Nihilist “simplification” may be seen in the universal prestige today accorded the lowest order of knowledge, the scientific, as well as the simplistic ideas of men like Marx, Freud, and Darwin, which underlie virtually the whole of contemporary thought and life.
This Realist Nihilism dominates the upper and lower echelons of those who control our thoughts and decisions at all levels of society. Scientific analysis of the discrete particles of human existence dominate: no truth other than statistics, measuring, reports, the purely physical world and its needs. Decisions are made at the base level of the market, of preference choices, of freedom from any so-called “moral” restraints.

Vitalism: the consequence of Nihilism
Vitalism is a more advanced kind of Realism; sharing the latter’s narrow view of reality and its concern to reduce everything higher to the lowest possible terms, Vitalism carries the Realist intention one step further. Where Realism tries to reestablish an absolute truth from below, Vitalism expresses the failure of this project in the face of the more “realistic” awareness that there is no absolute here below, that the only unchanging principle in this world is change itself. Realism reduces the supernatural to the natural, the Revealed to the rational, truth to objectivity; Vitalism goes further and reduces everything to subjective experience and sensation. The world that seemed so solid, the truth that seemed so secure to the Realist, dissolve in the Vitalist view of things; the mind has no more place to rest, everything is swallowed up in movement and action.
For men weary of truth it is enough that a thing “is,” and that it is “new” and “exciting.”
The appeal of Vitalism is psychological. Only the dullest and least perceptive of men can remain satisfied for long with the dead faith of Liberalism and Realism. Extreme elements first – artists, revolutionaries, the uprooted multitudes, and then, one by one, the humanist guardians of “civilization,” and eventually even the most respectable and conservative elements of society, become possessed of an inner disquiet that leads them into the pursuit of something “new” and “exciting,” no one knows exactly what – a hunger that the varieties of Vitalism can only tease, but never satisfy.
Everywhere men feverishly pursue the work of “progress” – for what reason they do not know, or only very dimly sense. In the free world it is perhaps a horror vacui that chiefly impels men into feverish activity that promises forgetfulness of the spiritual emptiness that attends all worldliness. The sterile “purity” and “functionalism” of contemporary architecture are a typical expression of such a world; the same spirit is present in the disease of total planning. Some of the apologies for such schemes approach perilously near a strange kind of lucid insanity, wherein precision of detail and technique are united to an appalling insensitivity to the inhuman end these schemes serve.

Nihilism: the force of Destruction
“Who wishes to be creative,” said Nietzsche, “Must first destroy and smash accepted values.”
Bakunin appealed: “Let us put our trust in the eternal spirit which destroys and annihilates only because it is the unsearchable and eternally creative source of all life. The passion for destruction is also a creative passion!” Here Vitalism mingles with the will to destroy: but it is destruction that triumphs in the end. [The Nazis] exulted, that “we may be destroyed, but if we are, we shall drag a world with us – a world in flames.”
Since there is nothing real, modern man feels great unease, alienation. One way to assuage this feeling is to take action: any action. Violence is one solution: any violence, any release of passion, fighting, sex, sport, violent physical activity. Sport becomes a means to express such feelings of alienation and passion: either watching violence or participating in it. It is a Spirit of the Age, the Spirit of the Gang, or the Team.
The Nihilist “revelation” thus declares, most immediately, the annihilation of authority. Some apologists are fond of citing “corruptions,” “abuses,” and “injustices” in the Old Order as justification for rebellion against it; but such things – the existence of which no one will deny – have been often the pretext, but never the cause, of Nihilist outbursts. It is authority itself that the Nihilist attacks. In the political and social order, Nihilism manifests itself as a Revolution that intends, not a mere change of government or a more or less widespread reform of the existing order, but the establishment of an entirely new conception of the end and means of government. In the religious order Nihilism seeks, not a mere reform of the Church and not even the foundation of a new “church” or “religion,” but a complete refashioning of the idea of religion and of spiritual experience. In art and literature the Nihilist is not concerned with the modification of old aesthetic canons regarding subject-matter or style, nor with the development of new genres or traditions, but with a whole new approach to the question of artistic “creation” and a new definition of “art.”

Nihilism: the New Man
The New Nihilist Man is rootless; discontinuous with a past that Nihilism has destroyed, the raw material of every demagogue’s dream; the “free-thinker” and skeptic, closed only to the truth but “open” to each new intellectual fashion because he himself has no intellectual foundation; the “seeker” after some “new revelation,” ready to believe anything new because true faith has been annihilated in him; the planner and experimenter, worshipping “fact” because he has abandoned truth, seeing the world as a vast laboratory in which he is free to determine what is “possible”; the autonomous man, pretending to the humility of only asking his “rights,” yet full of the pride that expects everything to be given him in a world where nothing is authoritatively forbidden; the man of the moment, without conscience or values and thus at the mercy of the strongest “stimulus”; the “rebel,” hating all restraint and authority because he himself is his own and only god; the “mass man,” this new barbarian, thoroughly “reduced and “simplified” and capable of only the most elementary ideas, yet scornful of anyone who presumes to point out the higher things or the real complexity of life.
[And the people under these Watchdogs of Nihilism become immersed in Market Consumerism and Alienated from anything which defines a person: aliented from family, community, church, culture – all transformed into a muddy greyness, becoming darker with each decade].

III – The Modernist Philosophical Effect on Society

It took a couple of centuries these philosophical ideological systems to become popular. Revolutionary ideas need the support of social, economic and political change to gain a foothold, “to catch on”. After all, the above philosophies would else remain just ideas.

Firstly, the ties which bound people together in the traditional Western society of the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries were gradually destroyed. The legal and social ties which bound the higher ranks of society to care for the lower ranks were slowly cut, one by one: the Church and Tradition, the binder of those ties, the protector of the poor and lowly, lost almost all power by the end of the 17th century. Although the very deeply-entrenched traditional Western Culture slowed the implementation of scepticism and relativism and their implications in their personal lives, scepticism and relativism certainly entered into the economic and political life.

Now freed from the authority of the Church, Parliaments now dominated by the moneyed men and no-longer-bound-to-custom nobility joined to force the peasants from their land and livelihood. The population of the countryside decreased,  and the urban working class were now exploited through the demands of the Industrial Revolution. The sheer acceleration of wealth in Western Europe through the late 18th and early 19th Century, focussed the minds of the intelligentsia.

The ties that bind had to be destroyed, one by one. Why? because wealth and economic power and Progress needed the freedom to run through Custom and Tradition. The great restrictions placed on the growth of economic power by the forces of Custom and Tradition had to go. In the depths of Western Culture and Tradition was intertwined Natural Law: the binding traditions of family life, the extended family, the trading and craftsmen guild’s binding of employer to employee and apprentice, the laws against usury, the binding of family with the land, the binding of the local lord to his tenants, the “democracy of the little man” in his locality against the faraway State.

Secondly, the intelligentsia relied on the revolutionary beliefs of the new philosophies to undermine Tradition and the binding power of Nature. Nature now was open to the forces of Rationalism: Progress demanded the freedom to treat Nature as a physical phenomenon to be studied and catalogued, to be uncovered by Man Outside of Nature. The independent “Free-thinker”, and the physical scientist, whose main fruits were the growth of technology and industry, the heroes of Progress. And so, also, the application of reason to politics and economics: the new invention – Political Ideology.

From Rationalism was borne Political Ideology – the “isms”: Liberalism, Socialism, Communism, Nazism, Progressivism, the Left and the Right, Environmentalism, Multiculturalism. From the old Christian culture, one abstracted the belief in Rousseau’s “goodness of man”, and the brotherhood of man, the idea of the dignity of man and his freedom. From the remaining old Christian cultural milieu of 18th Century French nobility we abstracted the cultured “polite” society, the good manners, the assumed standards of morality. We mixed it all up into a very popular set of Ideological slogans: freedom, brotherhood and equality. Liberty became the watchword to defend Progress against the forces of “obscurantism” and “superstition”; and most of all to fight privilege – the very enemy of equality.

So why were these ideas so successful and so popular?

Freedom gave people material prosperity. The powers of the State released by Modern ideas were extended way beyond the powers of even the most so-called “absolute” monarch of the 17th and 18th centuries. The Absolute Monarch was limited by the universal respect for tradition and custom. The Modern State is now able to organise any personal, social and political unit at any time, in any way – totally – as long as the voting public see an economic advantage.

Each “person” – I put this word in italics because the Modern does not really believe in persons – is but an economic unit, a tax number, a voter, a Social Security number. Government is by numbers, and units making up the greatest number. To be a person just means having political “rights”, rights being defined by and for the State.

Of course, at present, there are still cultural and traditional pressures to place limitations on what the Modern State may not do: personhood and rights may be manipulated according to the demands of Modernity.

So, you say. Look! Look at the vast world of happiness that the Moderns have brought us. People are free to “shop till they drop”, to swim, to travel in comfort where they will, to holiday on luscious beaches. People live longer, and more productive lives. The death rate is much lower, people live longer. Modernity has brought us great health. We look after the sick and elderly, and the dispossessed. We live comfortably.

And look at our hopes: that the Modern world will find a way to spread Modernity to all around the globe; the ups and downs of economic life will be levelled out; and those who now are suffering will one day suffer no more. All we have to do is to find solutions for the poor and dispossessed. Inequalities will disappear. Once we rid the world of the greedy, the religious fundamentalist, the tribal loyalist, the remnants of traditional morality, and rid ourselves of political strictures, raw capitalists, their cronies, and any propaganda from capitalist media, all will be well.

And what will be left after one ideological structure is destroyed, but another! Another ideology, another political form of Modernism. Greed and the will to power are endemic in human nature. Once all those cultural restraints of our past disappear, hell will break loose. A “nice” hell. A hell of being ruled by moral and social guardians unbound by any considerations other than polite “niceness” which changes according to the dictates of the powerful.

At present, the hearts of love, of compassion, which guide our beliefs about how we should care for each other, have been deeply engraved in our laws and institutions from non-Modern ages past. The aim of Modernism is to imitate the cultural remains of Christianity without the dogma. The French and Russian Revolutions tried to simulate those traditions, but without success – contrived and at base, heartless.

IV – Modernity: the rage of “isms”

Liberalism is the dominating ideology of the Western World. From the French Revolution, two strands developed: Economic Liberalism and Social Liberalism. Economic Liberalism – free trade, free markets – opposed the old, traditional belief in protecting local businesses, local farmers, local workers. It opposed the traditional monopolies granted to privileged individuals and social groups. The ideas of Liberalism necessitate Capitalism.

Economic Liberalism is the enemy of Nationalism (Nationalism closes markets – the economic liberal prefers Global Markets), yet Nationalism also is a child of the French Revolution as well. Getting rid of the King, a personal ruler, meant creating the idea of a Nation – an identifiable group around a common flag – another contrived idea to replace the natural local affections of people. Another Modern ideology. Unfortunately for the world, Nationalism caused two of the greatest wars in history.

Social Liberalism stems from the other French Revolutionary idea – equality for all. Social Liberals demand that the State makes laws to ensure all are equal. At first, revolutionaries demanded equality before the law, and now it is a demand for total fundamental equality for all – no discrimination between people at all.

Both these Ideologies dominate political debate. Those who are economic liberals – the “Right” – form political parties such as Conservative, Republican, National, or Liberal Democrat. Those who are Social Liberals – the “Left” – Labour, Democrat, Social Democrat. There is no room in either of these ideologies for those who oppose the Modernist Agendas of both Liberalisms.

“Conservatives”, who might be described as opposers to the Revolution, are mostly Economic Liberals who have shifted their position over the years from opposing the old “Left” issues and now find themselves on the Right of any current debate. But they are Modernists, just the same. Even, the old Labour “Left” find themselves forced to shift ground to the current “Left” – the Progressives, or be accused of being of the “Right”.  Our present Progressive Liberalism is victorious and has been over the past 250 years.

So, the Modern is imbued with constant rage at the injustices of the present in the hope for Progress – a debate which will never end.

Globalist Utopian Zombies
Below is an article by a Frenchman, Dominique Venner, on Nihilism and “The Religion of Humanity”. He also makes references to a very cogent book by a Frenchwoman, Flora Montcorbier, from her book: : “Market communism – From the Marxist Utopia to the Globalist Utopia.”

The Manufacture of Zombies
No one has yet undertaken fully to comprehend the curious outcome of the Cold War, that capital phase of a great upheaval. Who was the victor in this false war? It was the United States, of course, and with it the market economy. But it was also the religion of humanity, uniform and universal. It was a religion common to both opponents of yesterday. Nor was it their only affinity.

What did the communists of yesteryear want? They wanted to appropriate the wealth of all humanity under a supposed rational management, thereby ensuring all abundance and peace. They also wanted to create a new man, capable of desiring these benefits, a rational and universal man, freed from all the obstacles constituted root-like by nature and culture. They wanted finally to revenge their hatred of actual men, those embodiments of actual difference, and their hatred also of the old Europe, so diverse and tragic.

And the American West, what did it want? Well, the same thing. Rejecting central planning through coercion, however, the American system saw the market as the main determiner of economic rationality and of change. – Hence the name “market communism” assigned to it by Flora Montcorbier.

Market communism, which is simply another name for globalism, shares with its ex-Soviet enemy-brother not only the radiant vision of the ultimate goal. But, in order to change the world, it too must change man; it must manufacture the Homo Economicus of the future, the zombie, the man born of nihilism, emptied of content, and possessed by the spirit of the market and universal humanity. The zombie proliferates under our eyes. He is happy because “the spirit of market whispers to him that happiness consists in the satisfaction of all his desires.” And the only desires are designated for him by the market.

There is some resistance to zombification nevertheless. As the design is grandiose, one must not skimp in fashioning the means to break resistance. Whoever stubbornly refuses to recognize the benefits of the system can expect the fate of Iraq in 1991 and Serbia, in 1999. The world is full of stubborn dictators whom it is necessary to reeducate.

In order better to zombify Europeans, so persistently rebellious, immigration proved itself a beneficial innovation. The results were excellent. The permanent installation of immigrant communities accelerates the proletarianization of immigrants themselves, but also of the indigenous working class, the “little whites.” Without the protection of a coherent nation, treated as suspects by the public authorities, and denounced by legal authorities, the natives lost the last of their social immunities. Still recusant they become “naked proletarians” loathed by the zombies in power.

To overcome such recalcitrance, the radicals resorted one might say ingeniously to the teachings of the Old Guard of communist intellectuals, ever their traveling companions and familiars. The Old Communists provided the Communists of the Market with all-important inquisitorial clergy of the Religion of Humanity, that new opium of the people, in which sport functions as the High Mass. The Religion of Humanity is a religion that bases its notion of law in the so-called rights of man, i.e., the Rights of the Zombie, which are in fact onerous duties. The Religion of Humanity has its dogmas, its secular arm, the American military, its European auxiliaries, and various international or national courts.

One of the main instruments of the Religion of Humanity is its simultaneous manipulation of the collective guilt of the Europeans and their addiction to a false compassion. “Victimology” became the litmus of legitimacy for the new self-legitimating elites. In order to bring about the obliteration of all questionable thoughts, the “victimological” dogma has had to establish itself in a permanent criminal tribunal. Indeed, “Victimology” perpetually doubles-down. She denounces the “crimes” of the past or those of various exotic dictatorships and she attributes to herself the highest of moral patents. “Victimology” suggests that in comparison to her, despite her corruption and flaws, she is nonetheless the ethical paragon, the best justice of all. Of course even the best-designed systems are subject to contingencies. Occasionally “Victimology” bites back against her users.

The thought policemen meanwhile never cease to chase down evil, the evil that is to say, of being different, being individuated, loving life, nature, the past, cultivating critical thinking and refusing to sacrifice to the universal deity. Evil: That also signifies to the liberal regime any refusal to be duped by the system, or, in the words Flora Montcorbier, to demur in respect of any “appeal to the liberal credo, to moralistic humanism, or to a false environmentalist redistribution of wealth for the purpose of masking the inevitable and essential character of liberalism’s destruction of man, nature, and social life.”

Note: The term victimology translates the French victimologie. A more accurate translation might be victimocracy. Victimology would be the ideology of victimocracy, or rule by the (self-nominating) representatives of (self-alleging) victims.

V – Non-Modern View

Your sense of injustice is well founded. It comes from the very nature of Man: his objective weighing of that in-built understanding of his nature, of what is right and what is wrong. But Modernism destroys the weighing of merits of one kind of injustice from another and destroys one’s ability to see the whole picture; it is fundamentally “imprudent” because it forbids understanding of the whole ethical picture, especially since all morality is deemed relative. One is forbidden to place moral decisions into some kind of hierarchy (yet everyone, naturally does this). So, one is left with no basis to judge one injustice from another. One is left chasing one endless social and political “issue” after another. Politics and the points of view of the media become the centre of all discussion.

The answer is to look at the fundamentals of Law and government.

Firstly, recognition of your being a person and others being persons. You did not bring yourself into existence and you owe your family and all of the rest the debt to look after yourself and other persons. You do not own yourself – it is a given. Whatever so-called “rights” come with being a person. Those rights do not come from society or from government. They are self-evident in being a person. Other persons also have been given their self-awareness. Also given.

And a person has a natural end, a first function – to be and for the Good and whatever makes a person’s end as Good. Health, work, education, family life, etc., all are for the person to grow into the Good. A person needs to possess the truth about things, even the simplest thing, in order to grow. A person desires the good in all things but above all the highest goodness that a person can possess. A person cannot but thirst for truth and yearn for unity with the highest things. A person cannot but help but to make judgments over which is best, which is right, in order to grow towards the Good.

Nature has given us the powers of reasoning to attain those goods and a rich tradition of family and cultural life to help attain those goods.

All natural laws descend from being a person among other persons. Persons cannot live without a family, without all the extensions going right back through families, culture, traditions and society. Governments are called into being for the common good of persons and families, and all the fundamental social groups which help persons to grow towards the Good.

A government cannot be true unless it has some understanding of what are the fundamental goods. It cannot trash culture and tradition because these organically hold the Goods to which we are born to attain. It cannot ignore the Common Good for the sake of relativism or scepticism, or multiculturalism or individualism, for the sake of Ideology.

So, our good depends on our family first, then our clan, our tribe, our patria, our gods, and all the traditions and cultures which potentially contain the Good.

VI – Confront Modernity with Natural Law

Whenever a political or social issue arises I must follow Natural Law. Is it best for the Good of my immediate family, my extended family, my clan, my patria, my “gods” – remembering that religion defines culture? My “patria” is Australia, New Zealand, as colonists, from Great Britain, within Western Europe, fundamentally Catholic but shared with Protestants. I glory in Western Civilisation, in the music, art, and culture of learning from the Middles Ages extending to the various times and places where Modernism has not destroyed!

So, I demand to be prejudiced and give privilege to all the above hierarchy of my family: to give preference as an employer to family, then religion, then patria. The government of Australia then should give preference to its own Patria – British ancestry, heritage and culture; to Christianity and its culture, and to the family – family being the physical, sexual coupling of men and women which fundamentally generates the foundations of the State.

No ideologies should be allowed to stand in the way of these prejudices. There is no natural “equality”, but government should make laws which protect our cultural and traditional institutions, our families, our common religious beliefs grow. Laws to protect the family come first: the livelihood of the family, its economic survival, its need for time to grow as a family, a trade, a modest living wage, its need for a variety of educational, cultural, social and religious pursuits in order to grow within its extended clan and the community of one’s clan.

Modernism has made such ugliness and a hash of the family world and its structures are largely in place. So, then make laws to ameliorate the awful situation families are placed in. Sacrifice all other social, environmental and economic considerations for families! Make a 6-hour working week compulsory as well as two-day weekends. Enforce holidays. All so that families may be able to be together longer. Allow families to choose their own child carers and subsidise them, especially if they are family members! Tax joint family income. Reward stay-at-home mothers as child-carers and educators. Petrol and working-time subsidies for those who must travel more to work away from their families. Subsidise local industries, local trades, local monopolies, force decentralisation on all government and large businesses to assist families to work near where families live. Open up the land for families and make housing structures and allowances for extended families to live near or together.

Where there is a clash between different traditions, then Western Civilisation’s cultural traditions prevail. One tolerates “evil” only if, by not tolerating an evil, a worse evil develops. Toleration of itself is not a good thing. There are deep-seated traditions in our culture which must not be destroyed by multiculturalism. Respect for our traditions of chivalry – the poor and weak are to be protected, gentleness, politeness, of respect for women as physically weaker and possibly child-bearing, respect for our Christian roots in the holidays of Easter, Christmas and Sundays publicly and at schools. We have no duty to place other religious traditions on a par with our “Patria” – our European Motherland. We celebrate Armitice Day and Anzac Day, we do not celebrate the Fall of Constantinople nor Hanukkah!

Citizens do not need to be Christians, but to respect that those Christian traditions contain the very values which make us the kind of civilised life-style which we and others of the world enjoy. Remember, the separation of State and Church is not part of our constitution: it is an American tradition and even then it means the separation of the State from any one Christian denomination, not the general beliefs of Christian culture itself!!!

We should also respect the great line of thought stretching back to Greece and Rome. Christianity, the Roman Imperial idea of a Universal Law overarching particular cultures and the unique belief in reason emanating from Greece, are the fundamentals on which the good things of the Modern World are made. We must not relativise these connections. Children and young adults should be schooled in that Western heritage of learning, even if some of those ideas are bad, because when taken altogether, goodness and truth lie. For instance, all our technology and science developed from the belief that truth can be found in nature. Discoveries are made on those assumptions. Those assumptions are from the Ancient Greeks – we must not be sceptical about reality itself.

Part of Western  tradition is respect for those who protect us all – MPs, the army, the police, the judiciary. We should bring back the formality of these officials, and the full honorific titles for each of these officials in public. And on the other hand, those who work for the good of all, should work as if they worked for charity. Some of their recompense should be the honour which they are regarded by the community rather than financial reward. Rudeness to any one of these is an attack on the safety of the State and eventually the family.

We should protect, honour and respect those and their institutions who work for the common good without reward: charitable organisations and churches. And those who work in health and education, social care, etc., should be encouraged to work as if they were working for charity.

To do all of this, the media should censor anything which might bring disrespect to the office of those who govern, who care for, and who protect us: the media should protect the office of everyone!

And defy Globalisation, root and branch.

Finally, Modern Humanitarianism is based at root in the Christian idea of loving one’s neighbour. The French Revolution used this idea and invented the idea of the Brotherhood of Man. And stemming from that belief, wonderful, good actions have followed all over the world. But, without a true heart, humanitarianism easily becomes a love for “humanity” but not the individual person right in front of one. And it is the weakness of men’s hearts – deep down – that causes all the trouble in the world – not weakness in failing to act from one’s ideological beliefs.

Modernism, on its own, will fail, and is failing, because it cannot ever heal men’s hearts.

IX – Modernity and Literature

PART THREE: Literature – Enlightenment Propaganda

Before the lofty idealism of the Humanism of the Renaissance, European literature was eminently practical.

A. Poetry and Drama

Lyric poetry honoured God or one’s chivalrous lover, epic poetry recounted the exploits of heroes such as Charlemagne or Roland. Prose reached its heights in clear, logical treatises of philosophy and theology. Or was used as ribald commentary on society. The origin of drama was in the liturgy of the Mass and the cycle of the Catholic year: the very popular miracle and moral plays of Medieval Europe.

There was no school of intellectuals judging literature as works of art. Medieval society and its art was unselfconscious. Moderns would say, naive.

The Medievals lived close to Nature. Everything was seen and felt to be connected. This meant that in the arts, the writer’s imagination knew no bounds. Anything and everything could be put together to show connections. Up to and including the Metaphysicals, Poetry was able to connect thought and feeling through the metaphors of a nature lived among men. Nature and word were joined. Shakespeare’s muse is full of the connexion of life, nature, meaning, men, and a commonality of unity of man with nature.

With the beginnings of Modernism in the late 17th, Classicism heralded the break between man and nature, even though Pope and Dryden invoke Nature as their goddess, it is a goddess undressed by their own rationalism. The Classicist is emotionally removed and examines his art, his forms, as a Newton or a Descartes. All cleverly effete.

Drama divided into the Comedy of Manners and the more serious French imitations of Ancient Greek and Roman tragedies.

The Romantic poets of the 19th Century contrived a unity of man with nature, but the horse has bolted. Nature is now remote and lost. It is a nostalgic discovery of the daffodils. A nostaglia matching the Romanticism of a Wolf or Schubert Lieder.

By the 20th Century, poetry and drama become the tools of social commentary. Ideology dominates. Or it weeps at the destruction wrought by Modernity. The Poet is alienated, as is the Dramatist and Painter, the Artiste. And as Modernity creates a universal ugliness of implemented ideologies into life, the artist paints ugliness to challenge and to reflect the ugliness of Modern Society.

B. The Literary Novel – a Modernist Invention

The Literary Novel is a Modernist invention. The Modern novel is about man, his thoughts, his feelings, his interactions with others in his world. A novel is judged on how it is “true to life” – a life centred on man. The novel is judged to be good if it simulates the reality of character, plot, life, psychology, the interactions of human relationships.

It is no coincidence that the first novelists were from the late 17th Century – the beginnings of Deism and Modernism. The world no longer wanted to hear about God – so “divisive”. Reality excluded God and Man’s relationship with God. The Novel became the new vehicle for exploring the Modernist’s world, ostensibly more real. But how real is the exploration of reality if a person’s life is centred on God. The life of many people is religious: people pray, address their God all through the day, are aware of themselves as part of a religious story which takes place daily. Yet, this huge aspect of life is ignored in the novel. Let us also consider the very real conflict some people every day one has with “conscience” at its very depths – the fight with God. You will not find that in “realistic” novels.

The most realistic personal writings in the past were by the saints: such as St Augustine’s “Confessions”, Dante’s trilogy, St Catherine’s “Dialogue of Divine Providence”, and St Teresa of Avila’s “Autobiography”. These works reveal very deep reflections of the relationship of the soul and God in dealing with the challenges of life, stream-of-consciousness narration, totally honest, humane, and almost “modern” in their understanding of what it is to be a human being – a normal, everyday person in their struggles in life.

It is not until the end of the 19th Century, that the novel, especially the historical novel, becomes of age: popular, universal, and the main means of Modernist Liberal propaganda. And this trend extends right into the 21st Century. Novel after novel explores social, political and religious injustices. First, the villains are the aristocracy, the Tories, Catholics and the higher Anglican clergy – the enemies of the Liberal Revolution. The villains then become the rich, the capitalist, the bourgoisie. And then, in the late 20th and early 21st century, the villain is anyone who dresses well, has taste, who has manners, or who is a “fundamentalist”, a bigot – but must be a religious bigot.

It is interesting to watch films adapted from older stories. The heroes, who once were virtuous chivalrous nobles, are reinvented as rebel teenagers, or “cool” and slovenly – the new virtue: being true to the freedom of one’s emotions, a real “dude”. Any control over one’s behaviour is seen as aristocratic pretence!

C. History Literature
The writing of History by academics is an Enlightenment Project – interpreting events in the past in the Spirit of Progress and Humanism, with the over-arching theme of showing just how evil the Catholic Church and its impact on delaying Progress and Civilisation.

Edward Gibbon’s mighty work – The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire – gives free rein for the author to interpret every event involving the Church in the poorest of light. The Enlightenment interpretation of History becomes the main theme of 19th Century English historians and continues right through the 20th Century.

D. Contemporary Novels
There is little of value in reading present day novels. Many portray the dull, grey lives of people caught in the hopelessness of Modernity: broken marriages, lonely women and abandoned children. Many rely on including immodest sexuality and general acceptance of immorality to identify with the reader. Many portray the challenge of people from multicultural backgrounds adjusting to modern life – with the approval of the author on the side of the modern rather than the traditional.
Novels for men rely heavily on violence, sex, war, and heroes whose heroism omits any other virtues than courage and manly skills. There are no manly heroes in modern novels full of gentleness, kindness, grace, modesty, charity, etc. It would seem inconceivable now that a hero could be manly and courageous and virtuous!! So much for Gawain, Percival, Lancelot and Galahad!

E. The Catholic Novel
Intellectual Catholics in the 20th Century tried to employ the literary novel as a means of portraying Catholic life: Mauriac, Bernanos, Greene and Waugh being the most famous. But they had bought into the Modern agenda. The Catholic novelist had become too aware of modernistic criticism of their novels based on “bringing God” into everyday life. So Catholic novelists based their plots on the main character experiencing some moral dilemma which would be solved in the end by some act of moral heroism generated by Catholic belief. The characters are portrayed as anti-heroes, extreme personalities, ignoble, or self-righteous: all it seems with one eye on the modern critic, who would insist on so-called “realism”.

But one would be then led to believe that Catholicism is nothing but morality – hardly a religion which moves and directs one’s emotions, thoughts, perceptions, interactions with others … totally opposite of the writings of Catholics in the Catholic world who are totally unselfconscious of Catholicism affecting their life.

F. Conclusion
The contemporary media of novels, film and TV dramas are devoid of life. Predominant is the sensational: extreme blatant in-your-face violence and sex, end-of-world scenarios, fantastic super-heroes, or dark portrayals of the everyday life of broken families, abuse, rape, angry men and women. Or progressive propaganda stories which take pleasure in cynically reducing any seemingly “good” or traditional life-style as basically hypocritical and corrupt.

Moral and cultural and subjective Relativism and Reductionism reigns supreme. There is no real substance of beauty, truth or goodness about contemporary culture. No real end nor resolution to life’s problems. Nihilism underpins it all. Concepts of “being nice” and “being tolerant” are pulled out of a hat to save the plot and redeem the hero. No storyline is allowed to really examine where in the “hat” these values come from or why they are there in first place.

The True Story of Fatima

The Three Children of Fatima

The Lady in the Light

by the Rev Father John De Marchi, IMC

1952.

Re-published by Patrimonium Publishing, 2016

[Download Kindle version: truestoryoffatima – a ‘mobi zip file’]

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Introduction

Lucia, Francesco, Jacinta and the Marto Family

The Three Angelic Visitations

First Appearance of Our Lady

Second Appearance of Our Lady

Third Appearance of Our Lady

The Three Children Imprisoned

Fourth Appearance of Our Lady

Fifth Appearance of Our Lady

The Children Examined

Portugal Assembles for a Miracle

Sixth Appearance of Our Lady

The Miracle of the Sun

The Children Examined Again

The Cost of Heaven: Vandalism, Mockery and Persecution

The Chapel

The Cost of Heaven: Francisco’s Offering

The Cost of Heaven: Jacinta’s Offering

The Cost of Heaven: Lucia’s Offering

The First Pilgrimage Statue and Official Persecution

The Chapel Bombed

Miracles

Lucia – a Dorothean Nun

Official Recognition by the Catholic Hierarchy

APPENDIX

I – Letter of Dr Mendes, September 1917

II – Masonic Notice

III – Letter from Lucia, July 1927

IV – The Secret of Fatima

V – Papal Consecration of Russia, July 1952

VI – Analysis of Miracle of Sun

VII – Lucia’s First Communion

VIII – The Seventh Apparition

IX – Erroneous Version of Events

X – The “Unknown Light” – the Extraordinary Aurora of 1938

XI – Father Ferreira’s Defence

XII – The First and Second Secrets

XIII – The Third Secret

The Fall of Mankind

Our First Ancestors – Adam and Eve
Adam and Eve – our first ancestors, generators of all mankind, the pair, wonders of the Universe!

We cannot understand ourselves without knowing our nature, and we cannot know our nature as human beings without knowing our genesis. We are all children of Adam and Eve. We carry within ourselves their nature. They generate to us through time what it is to be a human being.

Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
God blessed them and said to them: “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”

Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground – everything that has the breath of life in it – I give every green plant for food.”

And it was so.

The Image of God
Adam and Eve were made in the image of God. Not just an animal, a living, breathing thing – but in the image of God: a self-conscious, self-reflective being, a being capable of understanding truth, free to choose among the good things presented to him. Being an animal, transmission of reality is borne through the senses, but being in the image of God, their intellects are in union with the essence of all things sensed. Fundamentally truth-seekers, knowers of the Universe of things. Their intellects go out to all things and unite with them. That is what we are made for: to know truth, to know God, to know what is good, what is the higher good and the lower good and to choose from them.

A little like angels. But angels see the essence of things directly; Adam and Eve indirectly through his senses. Angels live outside of time; but our parents live and us within time.

In the Image of God, Adam and Eve were created with an inbuilt need to direct each everyday act towards God – to love and serve God. The intellect of Adam and Eve demands that they know the Truth – God Himself. Their wills demand that they will, love, and desire, heart and soul, God Himself: that Adam and Eve need the full vision of God to be completely happy and fulfilled as a person.

The fundamental relationship between Man and God is an absolute ingredient, essential to the whole nature of what it is to be a Man. Man is created as a being, a thing, which needs to be in a total relationship with God – a marriage, if you will. Just as the soul and body are constituents of a human being – marriage partners – so also is it necessary, for man to be wholly man, for man to be with God.

This of course means that after the Fall there is no such thing as a fully natural Man. A truly constituent Man is one with God. Without God Man falls apart and becomes disintegrated.

So, they were given great gifts in order to fulfil Man’s nature: God gave them the special gifts of Himself. Firstly, God gave the gifts of the Holy Spirit, the indwelling of God in their hearts, souls and to the very depths of their being.

Secondly, God gave them the gift of infused knowledge of God and nature – angelic knowledge. They had no limitations to their knowledge of things. Their intellects were clear, super-intelligent, knowing the inner essence of each thing directly without analysis – infused knowledge. Thus they knew God, knowing God not just through the senses but by infused knowledge. God talked to them directly. There was no doubt in them as to whom they were with. No doubt either in them over their closeness to God.

Infused knowledge meant that Adam knew an animal or plant in its very essence, as an angel knows. This means that Adam knew not only the parts of things by sense observation, but also, the whole inner essence directly. Each and every cause of each thing. Adam really knew – became one with everything. Adam could sense each animal and plant in depth.

Thirdly, they were given the gifts of immortality and impassability. Adam was immortal. Death had no claim on him. So, although other living creatures died, Adam enjoyed the fruits of immortality – no disease, no weakness, no anguish, no fear, no clashing instincts, no unruly desires, no shame. The gift of impassability meant that Adam could not suffer any injury – nothing could pass into him. Therefore, heaven was present on earth.

Adam and Eve were truly innocent. They experienced no shame, no remorse, no lack of control over their bodies. What they willed to do they did. No unruly passions. Their passions matched the demands of reason and will. They were like children, totally trusting in God.

All these gifts made Adam and Eve the perfect human beings – the Lord and Lady of the Universe!! Lordship over all the material world. With Lordship came real Power.

The Rule and Power of Adam and Eve
Adam and Eve were created as the center of the Universe: the link between the material universe and the world of spirits. This means they were given the rule, as Lord and Master of the material Universe: which means the earth is the centre of the material Universe. Regardless of one’s ideas of galaxies and theories of the expanding universe: the earth, Adam and Eve’s progeny, are the Lords of all the worlds in time and space. There are no “aliens”. No matter how far we explore the material universe, we will find no other living things, which do not come under the rule of Adam.

Adam and Eve are given the right and the power to rule over all living things.

“Now the Lord God had formed out of the ground all the wild animals and all the birds in the sky. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name. So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds in the sky and all the wild animals.”

Adam and Eve, before the Fall, had real, effective power over all living things. This means that they had the summation of all the instincts of the animal world – as Lord and Lady. They knew living things in a depth greater than any scientist, not only how they lived but also they had the power to control them. For instance, we, even today, observe animals’ awareness of the subtle changes to the environment, to atmosphere, to evil events, to threats, etc. Adam and Eve could control animals by their very presence, their knowingness of them. At the very beginning, Adam named the animals and by virtue of naming them became their Lord.

Indeed, the lion and lamb could sleep at his side. No animal would worry them. Adam and Eve were actually the mightiest – the most powerful and knowledgeable of all of mankind who have ever lived on earth!

How small, ignorant and ignoble we have become!

The Unselfconscious Adam and Eve

Because of all these gifts of God to Adam and Eve, there was no need for them to analyse reality. Reality was a given. There was no “science”, no Adamic “investigation” into reality. No self-consciousness examination of cause and effect. No questioning of reality.

So, if we could see Adam and Eve then, we would be stunned and shamed at a sight of such truly magnificent creatures: a presence emanating from them that would stun us with our own lowness. We would bow down to the ground in their presence: the King and Queen of Humanity.

And they would be shocked at the existence of us miserable examples of humanity.


The Fall

The Fall of Adam and Eve is the first of the two greatest event in the history of mankind. It is not to be put aside by supposed scientific examination. The event cannot be examined neither by science nor historical research. But the Fall is absolutely evident in our own natures: we know that something has gone wrong!

What went wrong was the Fall!

Adam and Eve rejected walking and living with God. They chose to become as gods – to seek knowledge, knowledge of good and evil, to examine “why?” and “why not?” The temptation was to disobey God in order to know “what if?” To become as gods meant for Adam and Eve to stand back from themselves and to try seeing alternative options, one option being to take and eat the apple.

The evil entered them before eating the apple – the choice was already made: to be as gods. The serpent, Satan, assisted the process, by giving them the option.

To disobey God meant rejecting all the gifts. To choose to be gods was to choose the pride of life: this garden is mine; this knowledge I have been given is mine; I own it all. This all is mine. The great decision to stand apart from God created a division in Man’s nature: fundamentally he will now become “unnatural”!

In an instant Adam and Eve lost the gifts: they lost the indwelling of God in their hearts in rejecting God. They turned from the love of God and in doing so rejected His gifts.

They lost the gift of infused knowledge – knowledge now would have to be worked out through analysis, deduction, abstraction. But they would have retained the memory of all that they previously knew. Thus there would now be a degenerating knowledge of Man about Nature as time progressed.

They lost the gift of immortality and impassability. They would die. They could be injured.

And the consequence of mortality is that heaven is lost. No man nor women would enter heaven. The very nature of Man is to be in the Image of God. Our nature is to live forever with God as physical beings in paradise. Death is the result of the disjoint reality of Man divorced from God. The afterlife would now be a place without the presence of God. Death and an afterlife without God are totally Unnatural to Man. Hell, Hades, Sheol, are all terms describing the “unnatural” end of Man’s life. Every man feels this loss, this challenge of Death – the loss of one’s body – totally depressing, and an end where one’s soul is divorced from the body to wander in the shades for eternity.

And they lost their innocence. They knew shame. Suddenly both Adam and Eve were aware of their lack of control over their bodies: the flesh warring against the soul. Only the Love of God indwelling in them could keep their being integrated. Without that indwelling of God the will is at war with the body. What they will not to do, they do; what they will to do they do not! Lust in all its aspects – thirsting for sex, power, possessions – is at war with their wills. The sexual passions run riot through their bodies – their bodies visibly demanding satisfaction. All a great visible shame. Their bodies had to be covered.

Personal sin now enters the life of every man: not only the Original Divorce from Heaven brought about by the transmission of Adam to his progeny, but also the prideful rebellion of each man’s heart against God: the aggregation of little to big transgressions of the will against what is good, and each one’s willingness against Nature, God and His goodness demanding Just deserts.

They lost also their Lordship of the visible World: now dominated by disunity and discord, death and disease. Satan now becomes the Prince of this world, rather than Adam and Eve in unity with the Holy Angels in Heaven. Nature is now divorced from mankind. Animals will now bite and threaten. Even the very course of the stars and planets and interaction with the earth now are out of kilter. The harmony of the earth and the universe is now disrupted by earthquakes, and violent storms from which we would have been protected. The Nature of the Material Universe now heads downwards.

The biological decay of the Universe affects us right down to the microscopic core: viruses multiply; cell divisions cease without reason; or cancerously multiply; and cells start dying without known biological triggers. The Lord of the Garden of Eden, is exiled into a world of dying and death.

The Effect on Mankind and History
From now on all men inherit all the inabilities, the disjointedness, the lack of integrity, of Adam and Eve. Man is disjoint with the Universe and Nature. Man is now fully open to all the snares Satan and his minions lay before such weaklings! There is no Progress now, but a Great Fall Down through Time of Mankind. Knowledge of God slowly weakens until, as thousands of years go by, man even questions the existence of God. Knowledge of spiritual realities becomes muddied, superstition grows, scepticism grows, and the universal feeling of alienation becomes the ground of people’s existence. Hopeless.

Since we all have to suffer the discomforts of tiredness, ignorance, disease and eventually die, technology and religion now become the marks of mankind on earth. Technology – the making of things, of wheels, of fire, of an infinite variety of implements, of roads and cities, means of transport. All to lessen the impact of approaching death, to mark time! to make some kind of contentment until death.

Religions are founded to assuage the onset of misfortune on earth and to ease the prospect of death. All die knowing there will be reward and punishment for the unavoidable evils we cause in our lives. Justice hangs like a sword above our heads. Death and the afterlife threaten. Mankind sacrifices to the gods to make up for the underlying evil in our hearts.

Mankind progresses in technology, while trying to avoid the inevitable. And the progress of technology, the ever-growing complexities of social, political and economic global life, cushions Mankind from the inevitable, and indeed makes Man even forget the inevitable, until Man turns his back on Death, pretends that it does not exist, or has little import.

And Nature? Nature falls with Man. Over time all the species of the earth will gradually die away. The Gardener has lost his way.

The Future
Without the grace of God, Mankind will make greater and greater civilisations, exceedingly complex, world-binding, soul-binding. Mankind will become as little spoilt children teased with the promise of endless pleasures, and obedient to vindictive Masters given over to the Prince of this World.

The Incredibles and The Resurrection

Recently, I took the guilty opportunity to watch The Incredibles replayed on TV, while my wife and daughter were watching British drama on the main TV. I had been informed in the past that The Incredibles was a good film, but then again I have been so disapppointed by recommendations of contemporary animated films: their obvious moral relativism, their rude, tawdry preoccupation with adult issues disguised as childishness, rather than childlike innocence; their political ideologies, etc. They are cleverly constructed, and only very mildly amusing. In fact, I had given up going to any film on release, relying on the video release, so I can fast-forward through the graphic sex and violence and perhaps, just perhaps, enjoy what may be a really interesting story.

Well, The Incredibles took me by surprise. I was enchanted and experienced some joy, like the little boy on the tricycle at the end of the film, who expresses great delight at the final display of superpowers by the ordinary family next door. Wonderful indeed. But why? After all, this was the second time in 15 years I had been really impressed by any cultural work.Fifteen years ago I accompanied my art history students on a tour of France and Italy. Unexpectedly, we were all more impressed by Giotto’s narratives in the Arena Chapel and Martini’s Annunciation panel in the Uffizi than all the Renaissance works put together. According to the learned, and I count myself included, we should have experienced the Renaissance works as superior, conveying the nature of the Catholic Faith more effectively through greater, more convincing naturalism. Instead, Giotto’s narratives and ornate Mediaeval altarpieces carried the day.

Last year, I retired from teaching, and we immigrated to Sydney, Australia, from little ol’ NZ (Kiwiland). We joined the Maternal Heart of Mary Traditional Catholic Mass FSSP Community at Lewisham in Sydney. After a month going to Solemn High Mass there, the same feeling washed over me – heartfelt joy and hope. I looked to my wife and there she was, in tears of happiness. We were both actually singing Latin Gregorian, among clouds of incense, the Elevation among pealing bells, candles, the profound bowing, the numerous genuflections, the veils and Medieval Latin hymns.

The Incredibles, Medieval Art and Traditional Solemn High Mass? I think I could throw into this mix the climax of Pride and Prejudice, and Frodo’s cry of “Elbereth, Githoniel” in Shelob’s lair.

I may hazard a guess about reactions to Giotto and Medieval Art – innocence, purity and especially humility – the Mystery of Faith, human and divine. The same with the Gregorian Solemn High Mass. There is profound gentleness and no sentimentality.

But why The Incredibles?

The little boy realises that there are indeed super bodies which only he could dream about in his wildest dreams. Yes, the goodies win, but what joy to behold “ordinary” people possessing what may in fact be a promise to us all, an expectation that we might break free from the limitations of physics. I think, Startrek fans share similar fantasies. But then all mankind share this dream: that if we could have our way, we would live forever as human beings with real bodies, to fly, to go where no man has gone before, to thrill with absolute bodily freedom free from the limitations of our world. I do not think we really want “spiritual”bodies – real, physical bodies is what we would prefer, thank you very much. The Greek and Germanic gods had such bodies, and I suppose, most other developed religions thought the same.

Human beings really do want to live forever. But then we want to be happy as well. Death sucks. The little boy, in The Incredibles, like the rest of us, has a sneaking suspicion that it all may be possible, and that is why we respond with him – yes, let me have one too. And the reason for our reticence in voicing our hope in this fantastic possibility – to live bodily forever – is that none has set us a scientifically-proved example of breaking the barriers of physical space and time.

But, one cannot have this gift unless one is prepared to accept the full truth of the Passion, the Sacrifice, the Cross and the will to join oneself with Him. So, we can enjoy the ecstatic vision of God by becoming God in His Flesh and Blood, hearts which become like the Sacred Heart which can stand the demands of love of the Vision of God Himself.

It is all physical, mate! Christianity is all about bodies. About the hope of having a body with a heart so big that Mr Incredible’s body size and self-sacrifice is nothing compared to Christ or what is demanded of us. Yep! Christianity is Incredible. It is incredible that any group of Jews or Gentiles 2000 years could have invented a set of promises which infinitely surpasses the rationalism and idealism of Greek philosophy, the promises of all other religions of the world, and answers and surpasses the hidden heartfelt desires and yearning of the whole of humanity.

The bold claim by Christians that Jesus Christ did exactly that – overcome with His body the limitations of time and space – has been attacked from every possible angle, by historians, by scholars, by scientific theorists, even by Christians themselves. In these years of the Post-Modern world, the very meaning of the terms of “The Resurrection” have been nuanced out of existence. We have people making claims that this event is no more than what a Buddhist or Hindu means about heaven – a state of perfection of the soul reaching the highest levels, and purified by good living. Or we have some Christians claiming that this Resurrection is a Resurrection “event” – a symbol of hope in goodness and hope in the future of some kind of “spiritual” perfection. A faith in having faith. A symbol of the need to have good feelings about each other, to be kind and nice to each other. We have replaced the physical meaning of the Resurrection with “finding ourselves”, “looking for the spirit inside ourselves”, closing our eyes and meditating, etc. All very “wishy-washy”, vague, insubstantial – nothing new here because human society has always had its “spiritual improvement” side-by-side with its “moral movements”. A Heaven with resurrected physical bodies has been replaced by a “state of goodness”, a “state of perfection”, a higher state of [here it comes….] “spirituality”. And with this “spiritualizing” of our hopes and dreams, the “Real Presence” becomes a “spiritual” presence of Christ – no wonder the tabernacles have been removed to the side altars!I don’t think the little boy in the film would jump up and down with these beliefs. These reductive beliefs about the Resurrection are joyless, washed-out, “mellowed”, “reflective”, self-absorbed, and certainly not physical. So, what is the content of Christian belief about the Resurrection and Heaven.

Christ had a real physical body after the Resurrection. Hundreds of Christians, not just the Apostles, saw, touched, ate, and drank with Him. He appeared at any time at any place. His Resurrected Bodily Presence was so powerful that Christianity became a religion based almost solely on the Apostles and others proclaiming His Resurrection, certainly not because he was a good, loving guy who died for our sins, and not because of his nice teachings. It was the physical fact of the Resurrection – the in-your-face physical fact.

Secondly, He promises that we all will have recognisably our own bodies, bodies which will live forever, perfect ageless bodies which will be able to do anything , not restricted to the must-therefore-be very “provisional” laws of this universe. We will be able to fly from one end of an endless universe to the other in no time.Thirdly, we have been promised the ecstatic vision of the Face of God – the Face that the cherubim and seraphim cover their eyes from, the Face that one glimpse would sear your eyeballs in their sockets, the glow of which would burn one’s flesh off one’s bones, the vision of Love which would make one’s heart leap out of one’s chest, and a vision which only God can endure. And all in the company of other physical gods and goddesses, physical princes and princesses of a physical heaven, in place and time (but not our time).

Now the big point – our hearts and minds cannot take the power of these promises. We cannot take the infinite on board just like that. To experience the infinite and eternal is for gods. This Revelation of Christ is that we can only enjoy these things of God Himself unless we become in our hearts and minds perfect like God Himself. Our hearts and minds, the very substance of what we are, has to grow in this world in order to embrace fully the possibilities of the next. Christ promises us this absolutely mind-boggling future – a future which will come anyway, a future which every human being born on this planet will experience. Some will have a bad experience of this future. Why? because they reject the very openness to the fundamental love required to enjoy the physicality of the new world – I imagine that they will live “point-bodies” circling within themselves forever. Others of us, may, we hope, become purified after death. This will be a very, very painful experience! An extreme heart-rending experience, which only the saints have experienced in this life. An experience where every unintegrated desire will be expunged by the fire of love. Only those who have fully experienced the sacrifice of the Cross will be able to enjoy these promises. Unlike the Muslims, the promise of a physical heaven demands a fundamental change in our very physical substance.

Fourthly, He gives us the physical nature of Himself in the Eucharist – the god-making power of His Body and Blood – the physical stuff of the future so that we can be the Incredibles for real! As soon as one starts to theologize, to rationalize, about this promise it is reduced. He – the Lord of the Universe, the Resurrection Himself – is “physically” present, localized, in the Tabernacle, in the Host, unlike any “spiritual” presence. The words of the early Church Fathers and John’s Gospel use Greek terms like “crunch” and “gnaw” on his bones. Those are not to be taken symbolically, or “spiritually”.

In conclusion, Giotto’s narratives convey the profound humility of Christ and a humility of what is required of us; the Medieval altarpieces convey the physical glory of the promises in the sheer physical substances of gold and fine detailed rendering of everything with such gentleness and quiet joy; the Traditional Solemn Mass conveys the same gentle, pure, humble, many-layered reality of the Promises. Here at these Masses in particular, the physical reality of the sheer mind-boggling Face of God and the Sacrifice necessary for us, is made present in the only way possible for us in this world. The modern Mass on the other hand is too nuanced, too vague, too obviously hand-made, too comfortable, and too “spiritual” – needing further instruction for the faithful to understand things which it cannot convey. The Incredibles convey the shared joy in the very possibility of the promises of Christ.

This day, August 15 is the Feast of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary – taken physically to heaven, the first of mankind to experience heaven with a body. Mary, the most humble maiden, is now magnified in Heaven, she now physically sees her son’s physical Face to her physical face in his glory. She now sees us as we are now, hears our said prayers, is present where she wills to be, her will being totally united with her son’s will. Her intercessions for us are physically-present as a mother of her adopted sons and daughters. In our eating her son’s Body and Blood, we are more than her adopted sons and daughters – we are physically made her real sons and daughters. She has now become our real physical Mother.

Pray for us, Holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the Promises of Christ.