A softer and stupider version of this revolution is pushed in our schools, and many parts of our overgrown government, not to mention in the leadership of many churches and sects. The revolution seems like a good idea, until (1) you actually see what it entails, and (2) you recall that it’s the same bent and failing human nature out of which perfection and utopia will come, (3) “They”, the horrible ones with power, are the same as most of us, if we had their power & opportunities. Salvation comes not via good intentions.
What then? Shall we be enamoured of the old evils, or favour new ones?
~ YOU SEE IT every day. They. Them. THOSE people. Those BAD people.
One of the favoured abstractions of modern thinking & ideological movements is to passionately externalize all evil, bad intent, failure, hypocrisy, dark deeds, and wickedness only & always to others, and never yourself. THEM.
It’s why a religion which preaches sin, hell, personal awareness, accountability, moral imagination, and repenting/ turning/ returning to God from sin & hell and death is so unpopular to so many people, even some inside the Church.
The One In The Mirror
If you read the Gospel accounts of Holy Week and Good Friday, there is all our human nature laid bare. OURS. Not “Those horrible terrible Bad People Over There”.
As Matt Walsh points out, the horror of the Passion is that any one of us is or could have been scheming Judas, cowardly Peter, sleepy James & John, the fleeing and cowering other disciples; the governor Pontius Pilate; mocking King Herod Jr.; bloody-minded Caiaphas or Annas; hate-filled Barabbas; the justly punished thieves crucified on either side of Jesus.
Of course it hurts. Here is no happy happy false-Gospel. Here is humility, mercy, confession, forgiveness, sympathy, hope. The other way lies hell, hypocrisy, hatred, self-righteousness, cruelty, and bloodshed.
As we wait on Holy Saturday in quiet hope for God’s answer to Good Friday, let our ponderments help us to see how sin, death, and Hell have left their marks in us, our family & friends, our neighbour. Only then can we see with the eyes of his costly mercy; only then receive His victory over sin and death and hell washing over us and through us, making all things new. For He has prayed for us, carried us in His heart, and despite our worst, has done his holy best for us, our friend the God-Man Jesus Christ.
And then tell others about this mighty salvation. ~
Ah, Holy Jesu
1 Ah, holy Jesus, how hast thou offended,
that we to judge thee have in hate pretended?
By foes derided, by thine own rejected,
O most afflicted!
2 Who was the guilty? Who brought this upon thee?
Alas, my treason, Jesus, hath undone thee!
‘Twas I, Lord Jesus, I it was denied thee;
I crucified thee.
3 Lo, the Good Shepherd for the sheep is offered;
the slave hath sinned, and the Son hath suffered.
For our atonement, while we nothing heeded,
4 For me, kind Jesus, was thy incarnation,
thy mortal sorrow, and thy life’s oblation;
thy death of anguish and thy bitter passion,
for my salvation.
5 Therefore, kind Jesus, since I cannot pay thee,
I do adore thee, and will ever pray thee,
think on thy pity and thy love unswerving,
not my deserving.
Was He The One?
“The Way, The Truth, and the Life”, He said.
How can the walking talking Way be lost? How can the living breathing Truth be silenced and extinguished? How can the joyful and healing fullness of Life– die?
Now, imprisoned in a guarded tomb.
We all hide, numb and stunned– for surely we are next.
He was “The Resurrection and the Life”, He said. So He raised others– who shall raise Him to life again?
The local powers gloat; Rome marches on, with bloody sandals; Annas and Caiaphas have kept their power, and taught Pilate a bitter lesson. The crowds… one day with palms, another with shouts for His innocent death.
All our hopes and faith and trust are like ashes in the mouth; a shattered pillar; the cliff edge of a bottomless chasm. Shall we surrender to despair?…
“On The Third Day”, He said. He purposed this death to fulfill the Scriptures, He told us. Jonah three days in the belly of the whale? His dying eyes– “It is accomplished”, then.. over. Can God’s Son die?
The horrible drama is done. Let us quietly wait, on this Passover day. We cannot now rejoice, or join the crowds, or lift up our hearts unto God. Yet.
Early tomorrow, the women will go and do their work, and finish their preparation of his precious body with cloths and washing and spices. One last act of love….
Let us wait upon the Lord. For we love Him, and trust Him still… somehow….
All creation awaits with bated breath her Risen King.
“The Upside Down is an alternate dimension existing in parallel to the human world. It contains the same locations and infrastructure as the human world, but it is much darker, colder and obscured by an omnipresent fog…. [a] dimension that is a dark reflection, or echo, of our world. It is a place of decay and death, a plane out of phase, a place of monsters. It is right next to you and you do not even see it.” … “Nope. No parallels under here.” (Hilary White)
~ BINKS IS just about to finish ‘Stranger Things‘ on Netflix, Season 1. Must say, I love it.. and it’s hard not to binge-watch it.
No major spoilers ensue below. Promise.
Like ‘The Matrix‘, the hit-show Stranger Things employs that familiar & human sense of displacement, weirdness, that there is an Unseen all around us which sometimes breaks in upon us in our ‘ordinary’ lives. That there is more going on than meets the eye.
In the popular Netflix series, which overflows with references to 80’s pop-culture, there is literally an evil copy parallel dimension called ‘The Upside Down‘, where people can be trapped, and eaten by a monster. The dimensional doorways can appear anywhere and everywhere: the wall of a house, a tree trunk, the basement of a top-secret government lab.
What both ‘The Matrix‘ and ‘Stranger Things‘ lack to make them universal is a spiritual universe above and inter-penetrating the visible ‘ordinary’ universe.. and a clear sense of God & His guiding providence. Sadly, religion plays almost no part in the show, or the lives of the characters.
What ‘Meant’ Means
By comparison, the writer J.R.R. Tolkien repeatedly mentions providence without explicating that it is of the Valar (archangels) and Eru (God). The wizard Gandalf’s own long mission in Middle Earth was a sending from the Blessed Land to fight evil, help the free peoples via suffering and pity, and– ultimately– to defeat Sauron, the dark successor to Morgoth (a fallen Valar, the Satan-figure).
In that Lord Of The Rings scene– which Peter Jackson moves from Frodo’s kitchen to the Mines Of Moria– we read:
Frodo: “I wish the Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.”
Gandalf: “So do all who live to see such times; but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.
There are other forces at work in this world, Frodo, besides the will of evil. Bilbo was meant to find the Ring. In which case, you were also meant to have it. And that is an encouraging thought.”
That ‘meant’ bears a world of significance. Consider.
‘Meant’ is God’s providence, in the world, in events, ‘coincidences’, and via people. The Bible proclaims: “All things work together for good to them that love God.” [Rom. 8:28] Note: NOT ‘all things will be pleasant, easy, and straightforward’.
Remember: Christians serve a Crucified and Risen King, who still bears His (now glorious) scars. No easy path there: take up your cross. Follow, die.
Living Our Double Sight
And there’s another sense of “the unseen dimension”, our own actual “Upside Down”, which tempers our anger and enlightens our struggles. As Saint Paul teaches the Christians of Ephesus, and us:
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” [Eph. 6:12]
Any battle with sin, darkness, heresy– in the church and the world, and in our own hearts, is a combination of many forces, many invisible, or acting through us or other people in a greater & darker pattern than the simply human (as bad as we can be).
Exorcists are still busy in 2018. Possessed people still exist– some in politics, and in the Church itself. Even some clergy may be thus.
The Disorientation Is Real
In the current pontificate of Francis, there is unprecedented darkness, division, dishonesty, confusion and discouragement afoot. Papal hyper-loyalists rally ’round the revolutionary throne, throwing accusations at critics and radical (deep-rooted) Catholics who demand the whole witness of the Church to be heard, respected, lived, taught.
Sometimes, it feels as if an UnChurch from some evil parallel dimension like ‘The Upside Down‘ has invaded our reality, and is seeking to proclaim itself as the real, true, and only thing to serve. There is a spiritual war afoot: each of us can play a double part, on earth as in heaven, for good or bad. The darkness is not simply the opposition themselves, nor we only the bright good ones– for humility and reality’s sake, we admit there are brighter and darker forces in conflict within what we see, and in each soul.
Holy loyalty and faithfulness and restraint are good: but we do not honour the Church or her current leadership via our blind obedience, nor forgetting Whom She really belongs to, and Whose Voice she is supposed to obey. His will is not simply to be identified with the novel dictates of people who seem bound to another message, an unKingdom, a utopia of exalted man making himself into a God, his desires and feelings the measure of all truth and goodness. OUR kingdom come, OUR will be done: and yet, even in this, a greater darkness can be felt, seeping through, pushing, ruining, distorting the Church, but also the fever dreams of utopia, too.
Some Christian Basics
That evil unholy being is not some exact counterpart to God, but a created and fallen Enemy, and likewise all the fallen angels and powers under his control. Alone, we cannot defeat such darkness, for we are but mortal and finite and compromised with darkness ourselves. From such, Christ came to deliver us.
Ancient Paganism sought to placate the dark powers; to deflect the ill will of spirits, gods, sprites, and malicious beings of every sort. Animal and human sacrifice was the trading of precious life for benefits, or being left alone.
The Incarnation changed all that. Jesus is become the Lord of the living and the dead. The suffering King Jesus lays bare the plans and pride and shining schemes of Lucifer; He bore in himself our sin, and has already won the victory over sin, and death, and Hell.. yet the long wrapping up of the battle will seem almost like defeat, as the faithful must abide darkness in the world, the Church, the human heart, and in malicious spiritual forces.
But, but– What To DO?
Read the headlines; pray; comfort one another; love the sacraments; repent. Read the Bible & the Church Fathers, and the saints. Read solid blogs and books. Same as it ever was, and there’s no greener grass elsewhere. Cheer up! It will very likely get much worse.
Stay faithful, for God is faithful, and will not abandon us, or leave us weak and comfortless and enslaved to the machinations of the Enemy and his minions, nor to our own sins, negligences, and ignorances. These bizarre times WILL be sorted by God, and by his judgment & mercy, and by better Church leaders and theologians in decades and centuries to come. +
“Lo, I am with you always,
even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
[St. Matthew 28:20]
~ THE BINKS RECENTLY had a much-loved online friend who has known some illness, but not my heap of things, try to warn me that my soul was rotting away because I wasn’t trying to work for money while on disability. It was a unintended– and well-meant– kick in the throat.
I’ve been sharing a little more about ‘How I Am Doing’ now and again on The FB over the past few months, and this was (I was told) whinging and pity-seeking. Well, I’m alone at home most of the time, and sad as it is to say, you all are my friends, and extended fambly (even you, horrid Steve Skojec). Friends don’t go on and on 24-7, but a little info now and again (especially in the context of asking for prayers) is surely not verboten.
I worked sick & faked ‘being well’ throughout the 90s and 00s, until the body & mind quit, pretty much simultaneously. Crash landing: nearly deaded.
Never assume of your friends, family, and those you know to be ill or chronically ill with various things that (a) they just need to buck up, and (b) that you know what they are battling, and how bad can it really be anyway? I had a headache once, and that turned out fine….
Redeem The Time
And if you are yourself sick, or sorrowing, or chronically ill, or looking after someone who is unwell, or otherwise suffering, offer it up to God on behalf of others; ask for friends to pray for you and to help you where possible (our self-sufficient pride often keeps things bottled up), and so the blessings which God will give you, you can in turn share with others. Yes, that’s Bible. It’s a little version of what Jesus did on the cross.
“BLESSED be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound unto us, even so our comfort also aboundeth through Christ.”
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ.”
Pass it on. Be the Christ-like Good Samaritan. Redeem the time.
~ UPDATE– ITEM: 2014-15 DALLAS STARS ICE GIRLS; A veteran Dallas Stars Ice girl makes $735 per game and appearance fees range from $300 to $1500. And some former Ice Girls complain. Binks wasn’t aware that working for the NHL was mandatory…. ‘Cold’, she says? Ever been Alaska crab fishing? Standing security in a wintry parking lot? Linesman during a blizzard? Sheesh.. men often work cold “boo hoo to you!”; women gets cold, it’s a serious thing, dontcha know.
~ JOYLESS CRANKS tempt me to be joyless and cranky.
I’ll admit it– I’m a contrarian. When Mrs. Binks had a ‘Do Not Touch’ note on a recent birthday cake, part of my brain was egging me on “Touch The Cake!” And so, here goes.
In the inhuman and humourless Social Justice Warrior view of Canada, anybody who makes a swear (gasp!), says what they (objectionably) think (scream!), or like to look at women (swoon!), are stinking testosterone-poisoned man-pigs who will be taught better, or else. And we will mercilessly judge everyone, especially icky men.
Sadly, the politically correct really do believe they can forcibly redeem humanity without God, and with an ever-growing tower of rules. Mob, rage, dox, outrage! And what happens when the victims of SJWs people feel they are voiceless, bullied, silenced? They may shut up.. or keep it amongst friends.. or, tend to say stuff even more extreme than usual.. or (horrors) act like ordinary humans– imperfect, sinners, not polished racists or sexists or perfectionists like the speech-coders and finger-waggers.
After all, if there’s no more outrage to be had, no more triggering and tantrums and jazz-hands and minding other people’s business, and acting in a way even the 16th & 17th century English Puritans who worked so hard to shut down the theatres, (all entertainments, whatever and wherever people might enjoy something) would find extreme and bossy– why then, the whole grievance industry might shut down, and then where would we be?
Burn It All Down!
Social Justice Warriors and their media-minions– like the NatPost’s Scott Stinson— are never happy, and everything wouldn’t be enough. Without actual glaring and horrific human rights abuses in Canada, with no hordes of Canucki Nazis swarming Canadian Jews (sorry, that’s Muslims.. we can’t threaten their ‘cultural traditions’), or pyres lit for every self-identified grumpy minority.. well, we’ll just have to talk about nothing, right?
Are you also telling those Canadians who describe themselves as homosexual not to be sexist in said manner? And these ‘Ice Girls’– are they, in fact, victims of white slavery, or people employed making a fair wage in an sports entertainment venue? Self-objectifying, or canny? Part of a plot to eliminate the Zamboni? We’d better inform the chicks that they’re being oppressed, and quick.
The FHRITP guys are boors, poor excuses for men, and classless, but then what? Pillory? Duct-taping? Social-media execution? Firing a jerk doesn’t actually help him or change anything, does it? Or was this just some quick and dirty revenge?
What price, Mr. Stinson? How many human freedoms of thought, speech, association, free market, and minding your own business would you be willing to crush and erase for your notion of ‘casual sexism must die’ to triumph? Does this include all objectification of hunky hockey players and male athletes? No more semi-naked calendars featuring either gender for anyone? Human nature must be erased and scolded, not redeemed and transformed?
Cadres Of Harpies
Let’s not pretend, Mr. Stinson: behind your gentle finger wagging lurks whole screeching regiments of Toronto’s unspeakable Mz. Chanty Binx, would-be matrons and malevolent interfering hags minding everybody’s business, a tasteful low-heeled shoe stomping on male faces forever. If you don’t know that, Mr. Stinson, you are– at best– a useful idiot.
She probably won’t fetch you a sammich, men. Nor be an Ice Wench.
Here’s The Thing
We long for perfection.. that’s part of our spiritual nature, and longing for infinity, God, and heaven. Political perfection (let’s call it ‘Utopia’ = no place) cannot and will never exist, except as a horrible illusion built on blood and bones and torture and show-trials and kangaroo courts and concentration camps.
The perfectibility of human nature is a Christian idea, taught by Jesus, and only made possible by revelation of God’s love and law, and the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit: God is love, so love like God does, by his life imparted through the Son, by the Holy Spirit. We partake of God’s own life, to be like him, in him: generous, merciful, true, moved by love.
Counterfeits? Not so much. To try and make that perfection (your proper end, or destination, or completeness) is a gift of God, not of committees, yelling feminists, soft-pedalling journalists, speech-codes, rules, edicts, shaming, nagging, or minding everybody else’s business for them. That’s not any kind of love, except in a twisted, ugly, bossy, force-you-to kind of way. A bit rapey, in fact. Perfectionism is not perfection.
If I shall speak with every human and Angelic language and have no love in me, I shall be clanging brass or a noise-making cymbal. And if I have prophecy, and I know all mysteries and all knowledge and if I have all faith so that I may remove mountains, and I have no love in me, I would be nothing. And if I should feed everything that I have to the poor, and if I hand over my body to be burned up and I have no love in me, I gain nothing.
Love is patient and sweet; love does not envy; love is not upset neither puffed up. Love does not commit what is shameful, neither does it seek its own; it is not provoked, neither does it entertain evil thoughts, Rejoices not in evil, but rejoices in the truth, Endures all things, believes all things, hopes all, bears all.
Love never fails; for prophecies shall cease, tongues shall be silenced and knowledge will be nothing; For we know partially and we prophesy partially, But when perfection shall come, then that which is partial shall be nothing. When I was a child, I was speaking as a child, I was led as a child, I was thinking as a child, but when I became a man, I ceased these childish things. Now we see as in a mirror, in an allegory, but then face-to-face. Now I know partially, but then I shall know as I am known. For there are these three things that endure: Faith, Hope and Love, but the greatest of these is Love.
The choice about what kind of Canada is rising on the ruins of Emperor Pierre’s Trudeaupia is getting clearer and clearer.. a veritable Soviet Canuckistan teeming with busy-bodies.
~ ITEM:GamerGate is remarkable—and attracts the interest of people like me—because it represents perhaps the first time in the last decade or more that a significant incursion has been made in the culture wars against guilt-mongerers, nannies, authoritarians and far-Left agitators
~ A DARNED GOOD THING it wasn’t a Tweet to the whole world, or it might have required some hard ‘splaining.
In a letter to fellow protestant Urlich Zwingli, Luther complained bitterly about the doctrinal anarchy that was even then rampant among the new sects of Protestants:
“If the world lasts, it will be necessary, on account of the differing interpretations of Scripture which now exist, that to preserve the unity of faith, we should receive the [Catholic] councils and decrees and fly to them for refuge.”
Oh dear. Luther, Mr. Protesty former monk “the Bible is all we need” and nail documents to the door, wishing for Catholic authoritativeness, councils, and teaching authority. Oopsies.
The Dark Side
Or, in our terms, “McDonald’s CEO admits he thinks Burger King Whoppers are amazing, and that McD burgers make him vomit.”
Or, the pants-down oops from a while back, when people noticed that MicroSoft was secretly making documents and handbooks using Apple software.
There’s a creepy dark side to the Protestant thing which most churches and history books play down or ignore completely. If it’s you & the Bible, why then, come what may, right?
Thus, you get the apocalyptic cults protestants, and the naked protestants, and the mass-murdering protestants, and the polygamous protestants, and the take over a city and declare it God’s Kingdom on Earth protestants, and the restless German peasant protestants (Luther approved as 100 000 of these were butchered), and the prison camp of Geneva protestants, and the scary English protestants, with their nooses and hammers and itching hands, stuffing prisons full of popish traitors protestants (Henry 8.0 alone killing upwards of 72 000 Catholics under various excuses). Because God/ Bible + Me = chaos, as Luther observed to Zwingli.
OK, So What, Elf-Boy?
Binks has points, however afar off they may seem. The 1500s rise of the almighty conscience is part of our freedom, and part of our slavery. Witness our current plague of Social Justice Warriorism. It’s a form of de-Godded protestant “Because I Say So, Dammit” religion.
Who, after all, is to say who actually feels threatened, offended, micro-aggressed, or ideologically injured? Why, I and my tribe, with our special Leftist Knowledge Of The Mysteries, and because we say so. And if you don’t know, or believe, you’re not one of the special ones.
As far back as we can see, mankind is not just homo sapiens (wise man), but homo religiousis (worshipping man). The advent of atheists or agnostics does not make people unreligious, it just replaces holy things with other things, which then function as beliefs, deities, commandments, and suchlike.
Bullies, And Better-Thans
The average anti-GamerGater may or may not go to church (mostly not), but they have their absolutes of Feminism, Cisgenderism, Soft Marxism, Speech Control, and right behaviour, held so strictly and applied so cruelly that in most cases they would horrify the Catholic Inquisition.
Social Justice Warriors not only believe that they are completely and perfectly right, but that such rightness means they may be heartless bald-faced liars and bullies as required.
Hence, in the 2014-2015 controversy over gaming and feminism, opponents of the SJW’s were death-threatened, some lost their jobs due to malicious e-mails, and others were ‘Doxxed’, i.e., had their address and all identifying information put online for the convenience of stalkers, and/ or righteous mobs.
Shame On Canada, Too
In the very recent case of the Calgary Comic Expo, the Honey Badgers– including a CosPlayer, a webcomic artist, and a bunch of other nerdy types who were also anti-feminists, were booted out of the convention for ‘harassment’ which consisted of a polite discussion during and open panel on women in gaming. Censored, for opposing censorship. Silenced, for rejecting silencing.
The examples can be multiplied ad infinitum into the worlds of politics, culture, and decaying Western religion itself, but the point stands: we are religious creatures, and yet we have a twisted attraction to forms of absolute belief which render us as gods, having terrible and merciless power over others, and we claw through everything and everyone to utopia.
It makes a horrible sense: if there is no God, then it’s all up to us; if there’s no heaven or last judgment, then we have to make it right, and do so now. Those who oppose must be cleansed– they are evil, or stupid, or both, and less than perfect specimens of the future, like us. Cue the guillotine, gulag, gas-chamber, killing fields, or merciless and horrid social media and politics of personal destruction. C’mon– they only look human.
What The Incarnate Said
Jesus took a very different approach from the wreckers and radicals of his day. The kingdom and right judgment require humility, discernment, great-heartedness, patience, mercy, no dehumanizing, and it’s not all over as quickly as we might want or expect. And: look to your own heart first, before pointing fingers. When young, the “bastard wheat” weeds look pretty much like wheat. Start ripping, and it’s bad news.
Another parable he put before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field; but while men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. So when the plants came up and bore grain, then the weeds appeared also.
And the servants[a] of the householder came and said to him, ‘Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then has it weeds?’ He said to them, ‘An enemy has done this.’ The servants said to him, ‘Then do you want us to go and gather them?’
But he said, ‘No; lest in gathering the weeds you root up the wheat along with them. Let both grow together until the harvest; and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.’”
Terribly, Terribly Wrong
Sorry, Robespierre, Lenin, Hitler, Pol Pot, and your mini-copies in the Social Justice Warrior horde: you’ve got it almost completely wrong. Lay down your wrath, false religion, cruel judgment, and moral superiority.
For the Lord Jesus came to call sinners, and not the ‘righteous’ to repentance, new life, and his perfect and eternal kingdom.
So the ancient wisdom is as new and fresh as the morning dew: “Seek what you seek but not where you seek it” says Saint Augustine. ~