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domingo, 29 de octubre de 2017

About Christian Progressivism

Part 2

By Father Julio Meinvielle

Translated from the Spanish by Roberto Hope

The false foundation of Christian Progressivism

Up to here, we have explained in which errors Christian progressivism incurs.
Aside from certain theological and philosophical errors and deviations, and wrong attitudes in the Christian practice, Christian progressivism is wrong above all in promoting an alliance of Christianity with modern civilization. This attitude leads it, consequently, to ally itself yesterday with liberalism and today with Communism. A fundamental error lies beneath all this, which consists of assigning a necessarily progressive movement to the course of history and for the same reason to modern history which develops from the Renaissance to our days.

It is well known that those which assign a necessary progress to history are false philosophies; take, for example, Turgot and Condorcet in the eighteenth century; Hegel, with his famous dialectics; Marx, who adopts such dialectics and applies it to social groups to announce the inexorable advent of the triumph of the proletariat. Also, Comte assigns a necessary progress to history which would develop from a religious stage to a metaphysical one and passing from there to a positivist stage.

This takes us to pose the question of whether modern civilization means a progress or a regress, a perfectioning or a degradation of man. It is clear in modern history, from the Renaissance to our days, that real progress has been achieved in certain aspects of man. There has been an undeniable progress especially in the field of positive science and in the application of these sciences to develop industrial techniques for the production of goods and services. There is, without doubt, an immense, extraordinary technological progress. A progress in man´s taking of conscience in the face of certain fears and injustices. I say progress in man's conscience, not an effective progress, as we will note later. But the question is posed of whether there is a true progress in the fundamental aspect of man, namely, in that which makes man more human, better, more perfect; in short in his moral life through which man gets closer to God. That getting closer to God, principle and end of man, is what measures true progress. Since man is a participated being, he cannot progress in his substance except to the extent that he participates more strongly in God's Being. We hold that not only there is no progress in the man of modern civilization, but, on the contrary, there is a degradation of values which reaches deeper degrees.

The four values of a normal civilization

To examine that question we have to start with the fact that all civilization is a manifestation of human reality. Now then, in a normal man within the actual order of Providence, in which man has been redeemed by Christ, four fundamental values are to be recognized: Man is a thing, man is a sensitive being, man is an intellectual being, man is a supernatural being. These four dimensions of man are related between one another by a hierarchy, in which the lower is at the service of the higher. Thus, man is a physical and chemical being to sense, he senses to think, and thinks to pray. These four human values have their manifestation in the social groups of a civilization. So, to the reality of thing correspond the groups of peasants and artisans, occupied in the inferior tasks of producing economic goods. Above them are the groups of bourgeois which occupy themselves in the higher tasks of economic life. Above them are those who devote themselves to the culture, philosophy, military life, politics, who have as their mission to ensure the virtuous and cultured cohabitation of civilized life. Above these groups is the priesthood, which has as its mission ensuring the supernatural life to which man is destined in the actual order of Providence.

Well, a normal civilization must enclose these four values with its corresponding social groups in a hierarchy. A hierarchy of values which imports at the same time a hierarchy of services. The more valuable groups ought to use their hierarchical superiority to serve the inferior groups. This is why the Prime Pontiff, who is placed at the peak of all values is called the servant of the serfs because he is placed there to serve all men.

In history, there was a century — the thirteenth century — in which this normal civilization manifests itself within the imperfection of human things. That is why that century's civilization produces a very high philosophy in Saint Thomas Aquinas, an admirable politics in the Saintly Kings and also a marvelous art in saintly artists. The works are still there, the cathedrals, the frescoes, the philosophy, the poetry of that century, to reflect how a normal civilization develops itself. It is not the purpose to make an apology of the Middle Ages, and much less to intend to go back to such past ages. Neither is it the purpose to deny the harshness under which the life of the inferior classes of people in that society was lead. That harshness was due not to unjustness, since it had been producing a relief and improvement in human relations, which was passing from slavery to serfdom and from this to complete liberty, Harshness was due above all to technological deficiencies. Man had not yet invented the means of harnessing energy as steam, gas, electricity and nuclear, which now move the entire production system without demanding the subjection of man to the strenuous production of energy. There was harshness in the life of the inferior groups, although a real progress in their way of life has to be recognized, and especially the theologians' preoccupation for ensuring a fair price in all human transactions.

What is important here is to highlight that such century carried out a normal civilization in which its place was given to each of the human values which should not be missing in a civilization.

The three Great Revolutions

With the Renaissance begins a series of revolutions in civilized life, in which the inferior value rebels against the higher value, and so in the Renaissance and in the Protestant Reformation, the purely human, the purely rational, the purely natural rebels against the supreme value, then represented by the priesthood. Thus we see how Philip the Fair, towards the end of the thirteenth century, rebels against Boniface VIII, and, later, how Protestantism rejects the supremacy of the Roman See. A civilization placed no longer under the sign of the Christian values but on purely natural values is then begun. A humanist, naturalist, rationalist civilization begins in which the supreme value is attained by those groups, the humanists, the politicians, which represent purely cultural values, and thus begins then the absolutism of monarchs and the rule of philosophical rationalism. This civilization fills all of the fifteenth, sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. But this civilization advances towards its ruin, and this for a very important reason.

Without the supernatural value which in the actual order of Providence ensures the integrity of the natural man, this integrity becomes impossible, and thus we see how rationalism is nothing more than the road to the torture by reason, absolutism torture by monarchs, and naturalism torture by what is human. And also, inevitably, rationalism ends in the suicide of reason as in Kant and Nietzsche, absolutism in the scaffold as it happened with Louis XVI, naturalism in the materialism of the nineteenth century'. humanism in the homo economicus of the bourgeoisie and in the humans' animal life of positivism and of Darwin.

The First Revolution, that of the Reformation against the priesthood, leads to the Second Revolution, that against the political, philosophical and human life of the French Revolution.

The French Revolution is, in substance, the replacement of the nobility by the bourgeoisie, of politics by economism, of the human by the infrahuman, of the rational by the animal, of the classical for the romantic, of absolutism by democracy. With the French Revolution began a bourgeois, stupid, animal and positivist world. The homo naturalis no longer functions and the homo animalis takes up his responsibilities. Therefrom the materialism of the nineteenth century. Reasoning having been exhausted, that is, the operation which interprets and unifies the facts, which reflects upon them, nothing is left for man but to restrict himself to prove the facts and collect them.

The French Revolution opens the way to the nineteenth century, which is the century of economism, of capitalism, of the colossal industrial, commercial and financial expansion. But the fact that it is a century of economism, it does not follow that men attain their economic welfare. Because the economist economy of capitalism is inevitably inverted; in it, consumption has the purpose of producing more production is increased so as to sell more, sales are increased so as to profit more, while the right ordering of things demands that finance and commerce be at the service of production, and production at the service of consumption, and both at the service of economy, and economy at the service of politics, and politics at the service of man, and man at the service of God.

This economy so inverted is implacably disastrous and ends in the tremendous contemporary catastrophe which we now witness: an immense production apparatus which promotes wealth in the world and a humanity of which two thirds suffer a lack of roof or shelter, and undergo famine. Just as how the people had to suffer the abuses of politicians in the absolutist era, in the era of economism they become subjected to the yoke of the magnates of wealth.

The French Revolution which raises the bourgeoisie to the top plane, advances inexorably towards the Third Revolution, the Communist Revolution in which the proletariat, the las of the social groups, which does not represent any value other than the material, takes over the entirety of civilized life. We now find ourselves in the Third Revolution, which is the Communist one, the proletarian revolution, in which the unqualified and marginal laborer wants to displace the bourgeois, the politician and the priest.

He wants to supplant the bourgeois and repudiates the bourgeois economy of private property, wants to supplant the politician and repudiates the authority of governments to serve the common good, wants to supplant the priest and erects militant atheism as a system.

Communism, extended now to a great portion of the world, signals the last of the possible revolutions in a cultural century, After it and even with it nothing is possible but chaos in the authentic human values. Communist is a man from whom his supernatural formality of God's child has been taken away and so has his natural formality of sensitive animal. The communist becomes a thing, a bolt, a nut in the great machine that is the collective society of the proletariat. What remains of a man from whom these three dimensions have been taken away? Only one thing remains, something which advances towards nothing. And thus, communism is, definitely, the deification of the reality which tends to nothing. What is the reality which tends to nothing? What is that which continues being something but is nothing by its pure potentiality? It is Aristotle's raw material, that material which of itself is neither essence nor quality, nor quantity, nor any other thing by which being is determined.

That is why communism is not necessarily materialistic. Communism tends to nothingness, to the purely shapeless, to being anything under the all-powerful hand of the dictatorship of the proletariat. This colossal power grabs the man and converts him into the gearwheel of an equally colossal machinery. Man, individual man loses his condition of God’s child made in the image of God to contemplate God, loses his natural condition of lord and master of nature, he also loses his animal condition to enjoy the sensitive pleasures; man becomes a purely useful thing which is utilized or discarded according to whatever the convenience of the great collective machinery demands: man has lost his destiny.
Note how that process against man’s religious life which started with the Protestant Reformation, reaches its sharpest point in Communism. Man first revolted against the Church in Protestantism, then he revolts against Jesus Christ in rationalism, and today the revolt is directly against God in militant atheism. This is why communism must necessarily be atheistic. That is how Marx explains it, finding in religion a frustration for man. To Communism, religion is not only useless, it is positively evil because it destroys man. The dialectics of the opposition of God and man is nurturing all of Marx's thinking.

If God exists and is the Creator of man, man cannot exist and much less be his own creator. Since what one has and is, is at the expense of someone else. But since man exists and is the creator of his own history, it follows that God does not exist nor there a creator of man. The dialectical process leads Communism not only to negate God before man but to affirm that man is god.

Communism also deprives man of his political character, that is, of the relationship of one man with another. Political life, in the noble sense of the word, the relationships of men with other men for their virtuous improvement, does not exist in Communism. Man is nothing but a pure laborer whose value is measured by his relation with the capacity to produce material goods. The politic quality consisting in a relationship of man with man for the completion of the sufficiency required for human living cannot exist in a society which has no reason of being other than using man to produce goods. But there is more, communism is not even interested in the material welfare of man, i.e. the possession of the wealth which supplies a specifically animal enjoyment. This enjoyment was sought by the bourgeois in the liberal society.

But Communism does not even come to this. Communism is not interested properly in wealth, it is interested in work, which is the wealth-producing instrument. It does not seek the living of man but the working of man. That is how Marx teaches it clearly in his book “The German Ideology”. For Communism, the supreme and only value is the labor producing material goods. Man himself and even his material welfare is not of interest. Its only interest is for man to work and produce, even if he does not enjoy.

Communist man finds himself deprived of enjoying the divine of God´s contemplation, deprived of the human enjoyment which political cohabitation affords, deprived of the animal enjoyment produced by the use of economic goods. He is a pure laborer enslaved to the work for the benefit of the collective society.

The convulsive state of modern man

What is the result brought about by modern civilization in which man has been degrading in his human substance? Today's situation reflects the value of this civilization. Man has reached a convulsive state, And we see how man has lived anguished by horrific events happened in the last fifty years. The First World War, the Cold War, the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the threat of a nuclear war. Man lives terrified. Therefrom the anguish and terror literature and philosophy. Two-thirds of humankind living in a chronic state of hunger, and many families deprived of shelter.

We are witnesses, after four centuries of the anti-Christian and anti-human character of the proud Modern civilization. Anti-Christian because immense populations of the Communist countries and of the countries who life under a practical, if not militant, atheism, with a total ignorance of God the Creator.

Anti-human civilization because immense populations in the globe knowing nothing other than hunger, anguish, horrors of war and fratricidal strife, such as the strife between proletarians and the bourgeois, and homeless.

Here we note how false is the foundation on which Christian progressivism supports its acceptance of modern civilization. It would be right to accept it if it offered human values that truly perfected man. It should not be accepted to the extent that it exerts a destructive and degrading action on man. True, modern civilization has brought about some partial progress in the techniques of production of material wealth. But in failing to procure the true perfecting of man in his moral and religious aspect, technological advance without a corresponding moral progress turns into a terrible weapon of destruction and degradation of man. It is thus that the paradox comes about that just in the precise moment in which the undeniable advances in technology permit providing well being to the population of the globe, immense multitudes of millions of human beings suffer the penury of a lack of satisfaction of their most elementary needs. What is still much worse, they see themselves threatened in their own physical integrity by nuclear weapons.

This is why it is important for man to make a greater effort to order his moral and religious life without abandoning his effort in the creation of material goods. Herein the prime — absolutely prime — need to recognize the rights of the Church in public life, rights which concretize the higher ones of Christ´s redemption and God's sovereignty. This public recognition of the rights of the Church by nations and by the world order is a fundamental condition for the moral life of the people as well as for their material well being. Here take their place those profound words of Christ ´Seek you first the kingdom of God and His Justice, and the rest will be given to you in addition'.

Christian progressivism, in abandoning this fundamental and primary task of edifying the Kingdom of God in the temporal life, in abandoning the instauration of the Catholic city, of Christian civilization, toils in the edification of the Communist city. This is why Christian progressivism ends up collaborating with communism.

There is no in-between. In refusing to work for the Christian civilization, it labors for the anti-Christian and anti-human civilization.

(To be continued.)
Go to Part 1
Go to Part 3

domingo, 22 de octubre de 2017

About Christian Progressivism

Part 1

By Father Julio Meinvielle

Translated from the Spanish by Roberto Hope

Presentation of the on-line edition

The conferences delivered by Father Julio Meinvielle on May 12, 13, and 14, 1964 at the Huemul Bookstore in Buenos Aires, were transcribed from stenographic records and first published in a 30-page fascicule which we now publish on-line. They were also published in Italian in the ‘Relazioni’ journal and later published in book form by Edizioni Mediterranee, on the fortnight of the last session of the Second Vatican Council with no indication of publishing date or location 1. Ten years after his death, they were incorporated as the three first chapters of ‘El Progresismo Cristiano’, a compilation of several of his writings on the topic, published by Ediciones Cruz y Fierro, Buenos Aires, in 1983.

Christian progressivism, discerned and defined by Meinvielle as a multifarious intent of converting Christianity, the Church and Christendom to the “Modern World”, the world which resulted from centuries of apostasy through the successive process of the Anti-Christian Revolution, guided by human ideologies emerged from a worldview which, ever since it abandoned Christ's Gospel and Truth, had gone astray through Protestantism, rationalism, liberalism, Marxism and nihilism. “Progressivism” because it wraps that “modern world” with the mantle of the myth of “Progress” as a necessary law of History to which Christians and Christian thought and life should accommodate.

Clear discernment united in Father Meinvielle with denunciation and with the good fight, with the fierceness of a Father of the Church, of a prophet who denounces without compromise, of a martyr apostle who attests to the Truth despite everything and everybody, for the love of Him who is the Truth, for the love of those imperiled by error, for the love of the enemy who militates in and for the error. That is how he stepped out with clairvoyance in his writings and conferences countering the errors of Maritain, Teilhard, Mounier, Rahner, and masterfully unraveling the gnostic origin and foundation which impregnates the modern and contemporary philosophy of immanence, and from there the ideology and progressivism in the Church itself. At the beginning of his masterful work 'De la Cábala al Progresismo' 2 he said there are only two forms of thinking about reality: the Christian one founded on the actual Creator-creature distinction, and the gnostic one, at the same time Monist and Pantheist, which confuses God with the world, history, man; finally negating both God and man in the grindstone of “progress”; progress which in reality is the march towards nothingness, identified with an Absolute which is the idol put in God's place.

In connection with the progressivist phenomenon, Paul VI said that “the smoke of Satan had entered the holy place”... Today, so many years after he rang it, Father Meinvielle's sound of alarm is more actual than ever.

1 The Italian translation has been revised and placed on line by Totus Tuus network since 2002.
2 Editora Calchaquí, Salta 1970, 463 pages. Re-edited by Ediciones Epheta, Buenos Aires 1994; in French: ‘De la Cabale au Progressisme’, 369 pages.; in Italian: ‘Influsso dello gnosticismo ebraico in ambiente cristiano’, Sacra Fraternitas Aurigarum in Urbe, Rome 1988, 372 pages. ‘Dalla Cabala al progressismo’, Rome 1989; 2d Italian edition integrated not for trade, dedicated to Ennio Innocenti, Sacra Fraternitas Aurigarum in Urbe, Rome 1995, 381 pages.

About Christian Progressivism
Part 1

Phenomenology of progressivism

This is not a conference, it is an informal conversation. We shall speak about progressivism; in the first place, we should give notice that those who use the word progressivism in a systematic manner are the communists, because for them history unfolds in a dialectic process which goes from the worst to the best; so, for example, for them feudal society advances in a dialectical process towards the liberal or bourgeois society, and the bourgeois towards the socialist, and the socialist towards the communist; but progressivism can also be understood in a general manner as the way society advances towards better conditions and stages of development.

We are going to talk about progressivism as a phenomenon which can be observed inside the Church nowadays and which, above all, has become fashionable as a consequence of Vatican Ecumenical Council II. World press has divided the Conciliar Fathers into two major currents: one, of the innovators and amicable to reforms, which it has labeled the progressivists, and the other, of Fathers who are rather mindful of maintaining the legitimate traditions, which have been labeled conservative, reactionary and integrists.

When we talk about progressivism here, we will be referring to a movement which can be noted in the Church these days, upholding doctrines and attitudes that should be considered deviationist errors; but making the distinction that not all those who call themselves progressivists should be called that way in this censurable sense; there are those who, ignorant of the content of the term progressivism as is being propagated these days, call themselves progressivists although they advocate not more than a legitimate and necessary progress in the Church.

We also call attention to the fact that, although Teilhardism is a version of progressivism, there can exist and actually exist, other censurable versions of progressivism.

All this makes us see that progressivism as propagated today is an ambiguous error which may fit many versions, tendencies, deviations, of greater or lesser gravity but always of an ambiguous character. This ambiguous character was noted by Paul VI, in his message to Catholics in Milan, delivered on August 15, 1963, when he said: “We perceive that the riches of the religious traditions are in danger of diminution and ruin, threatened not only from the outside but also from inside the Church; in the people's conscience, the healthy religious mentality and the traditional fidelity to the Church, which are the foundation and the source of this richness, are altered and diluted. Our fear is proportional to the value of the spiritual patrimony which we have the responsibility to administrate. Saint Ambrose's faith, the legacy of Saint Charles, the apostolic efforts of the most recent archbishops, seem to be compromised; not so much by the natural effects of time, but by a radical and irresistible change which substitutes the conception of life of our people with another conception which cannot be defined except in the ambiguous term of progressivism, which is no longer Christian or Catholic.

The progressivist phenomenon

To characterize the progressivist phenomenon inside the Church, we will use articles published in the “Le Monde et la Vie” review in its December 1962 issue, which carry the title: “Where is the French Church heading to?” We read there, on page 63: “On the doctrinal plane, Pope Pius XII had condemned the communists and their accomplices with excommunication on July 13, 1949. Three months later, Mounier, commenting on this condemnation, issued the hypothesis that it was a serious historical error, which took a chaplain father to tell his students on August 15, 1958, in the presence of the Bishop of Nancy: ‘Your teachers are no longer the Pope or the Bishops, but Emmanuel Mounier and Peguy’ In this admonition, by the way, Peguy was not mentioned but in his socialist and proletarian aspect.
These progressivist tendencies are still more clearly expressed in Temoignage chrétien, a Catholic review. On March 11, 1955, Monsieur George Suffert wrote that there are now two churches in the heart of Catholics: a visible Church, almost entirely putrefied, sunk under capitalism, pursuing a debatable European politics and conducted by bishops of other times, and an ideal Church, formed by some open-minded Christians, which are the future of Christianity because they fight elbow to elbow with the proletariat and, deep in their hearts, yearn for a more saintly visible church, more liberated from commitments and from money. The priests of the new ecclesiastical wave, it is said, do not pay attention to the habit, the rosary, Lourdes, Montmartre, or liturgy; they excuse themselves from the obscure and fertile ministry of catechism and confession, of sacraments to the dying, and are not interested but for a certain political action begun by the prêtres ouvriers. This political action is what has caused a socialist representative, S.F.I.O de la Creuse, to express this confession which paints the entire program of the progressivist clerics: “I had an entirely peaceful socialist fiefdom but the Priests of the Souterraine (Priests of the Mission of France) have spoiled it, favoring the implantation of communism there”

In the same issue of the French review we just commented on, appears an interview with Father Boyer. Father Boyer is a priest who had begun as a workingman priest, then became a Communist but later returned to the Church, not to a progressivist position, but on the contrary, to one exactly the opposite. He now directs Action Fatima and fights vehemently against the Teilhardians. Well, in that review, Father Boyer says in such interview: “Besides, in the progressivist circles in the Church little importance is given to the daily individual Mass; they believe it is the community the one which should pray and participate collectively in the Mass. Moreover, the quarter hour Mass has been adopted. Already Teilhard had simplified the Mass. He would say Mass on the World: a Mass quite strange, without altar, without the host, without wine, in which the celebrant offered the entire world, all united, to God. Certain groups, as the one of El Prado, in Lyon, have gone further: in Catechism they no longer teach children about Hell or sin. All of this constitutes a moral schism, which without doubt would become effective if the Holy Office were to annul all these reforms.”

The way this progressivist intoxication is propagated could be explained. Father Boyer notes that, at least in France, “the intoxication begins with the Paris Catholic Institute, it is continued by the Jesuits, the seminaries; it is filtered, dosed, administered along the hierarchy by means of licenses and doctorates. Seminaries send their best students to Catholic Institutes and there it begins. Right away novices are told: We are not going to tell you what is told to the vulgar people, but we will introduce you to the great secrets; then, someday, a Council will come and legalize all this. In the meantime, the initiated has become a Parish Priest, Seminary Director, Bishop, or whatnot. In this play, in all cases, Jesuits and Dominicans form a block with Teilhard. All this is operated, I repeat, with a minimum discretion which I cannot describe in a simple interview. I add that these young men believe to be doing the best, the same as the majority of their professors, but purity of intention does not justify error.”

Some errors and deviations of Christian Progressivism

It is very difficult to characterize with precision the errors and deviations in which Christian progressivism incurs in almost all aspects of doctrine and religious life. Some uphold one error or deviation and others, another. The enumeration we are going to make is not exhaustive nor is it formulated by all which call themselves progressivist.

In the first place, among the progressivists there is a well-marked disdain for Saint Thomas' philosophy and theology; it is well known that, for the Church, Saint Thomas Aquinas is the first doctor who has accomplished a synthesis, up to now unsurpassed, of Christian teachings, and has presented them in a body of doctrine which forms a complete architecture. Well, progressivist clerics despise Thomist philosophy and theology, arguing that all of it is based upon an archaic science which has already been definitively surpassed. So, in the same way that such science is no longer valid, so it happens with Saint Thomas' metaphysics and theology. It is not difficult to notice the error of these progressist clerics: Metaphysics and Theology are independent of the experimental science which Saint Thomas may have possessed; what is important in that metaphysics and in that theology is the formulation of the first principles of the reality of being. To reject Saint Thomas is to reject the philosophy of being and to fall consequently in a philosophy of the idea, of life, of development, of existence. To follow this road makes it impossible to reach the being and, for the same reason to put man in a rational contact with God, his Creator. This way man closes the road of his intelligence towards God and becomes incapable of erecting a theology which respects the natural and the rational foundations on which Revelation and theology are to be supported.

Among the progressivists of which we are talking, there is a tendency to revise all scholastic and Thomistic theology treatises under the pretext that contact should be made with all of the sources, namely, the Bible and the teachings of the Fathers. This tendency may be good if it does not deny the legitimate progress which has been accomplished with the great disquisitions and treatises of the subsequent doctors; they want to return to a purely biblical and patristic theology. Such tendency is even more dangerous and becomes the source of innumerable errors if we take into account that the Bible today is being subjected to a demolishing criticism by the new rationalism. There are exegetes, like Rudolph Bultmann for instance, who are determined to demythify, as they say, the Christian kerygma. In this task, they reduce the Divine word in Scripture to very little, with the pretext that everything is a myth, including the resurrection of Our Lord. It is well known that some Catholic Bible specialists reject, for instance, the infancy in Saint Luke's Gospel, and say that the Magnificat is not a canticle ever pronounced by the Virgin. In this way, the road is open to the total destruction of the Old and the New Testament of the Sacred Scripture.

Upon rejecting Saint Thomas' theology, recommended insistently by the Church's Magisterium, new theologies will be invented, supported by false philosophies as, for instance, historicism, evolutionism, and existentialism. It is well known how Pius XII, in Humani Generis, has condemned all those dangerous tendencies of the new theology. But progressivism pays no attention to the warnings of the Popes.

Progressivism´s other grave deviation is the rejection and diminution it makes of the Papal authority and of the Roman Curia, rejecting the Church's ordinary magisterium. On this point, progressivists formulate the most picturesque assertions: For them, when a Pope dies, all of the truths taught by him lose their value. This error is all the graver because it is known that the Pontiffs' teachings turn around the truths of Revelation and the natural philosophical order, which keep a permanent value; it is for that reason why the Popes in their magisterium invoke the doctrines of the earlier magisterium of their predecessors.

The campaign of disdain for the Magisterium of the Church is accompanied by a campaign against the person of great Pontiffs, as for instance against Pius XII. This Pope is not forgiven for his promulgation of Humani Generis against the deviations of the new theology in 1950, neither is he forgiven for having condemned the worker priests movement, or for having put an end to the excesses of some Dominican theologians, or for having canonized Saint Pius X.

Some progressivists, especially in France, present an image of the Church as though its center, which is located in Rome, had the function of putting the brakes, while the periphery is dynamic and moved by the Spirit. The Roman hand which puts the breaks, it is said, is retrograde and sterilizing, while the engine in the periphery shows the intelligence of the situations and apostolic audacity (see Itineraires N° 60).

Progressivists, carried away by a false ecumenism, dare likewise reduce the privileges of the Virgin and in that manner oppose, for instance, that Mary be recognized as Universal Mediatrix of all Graces or that such title be given to her.

Progressivists, renewing the errors of Pelagianism, are also prone to negate or to obscure the notion of sin and hell. On grounds of psychoanalysis theses or profound psychology, they are moved to deny malice and responsibility for sin, especially regarding the sexual sins.

In spiritual life, there is an intent to suppress the effort in the individual acts and practices to the benefit of an exclusively communitarian piety. In these errors, progressivists tend to incur in an exaggerated communitarian liturgism.

It also ought to be pointed out, the errors and deviations of a perilous personalism which leads them to formulate the thesis of religious liberty as a right to the public profession of any error, and which gives rise to an individualist or situation morality.

The fundamental error of progressivism

But it is not in these errors where lies the most characteristic of modern progressivism. The fundamental error consists of negating the need for a Christian social order or what ecclesial magisterium calls, ever since the days of Leo XIII up to the current Pontiff, the Christian civilization or the Catholic city; progressivists deny the existence of such Christian civilization or such Christian public social order. It has reached the point that in Paris, in public radio broadcasts, it has been affirmed that such concept does not exist in the Magisterium of the Church, when it is evident that there are at least close to 50 documents which make explicit reference to Christian civilization.

Progressivists also disqualify as national-catholicism, the intention of taking the program of the Catholic city to practice. In rejecting Christian civilization, the progressivists also reject the rights of Christ's reign over the temporal order of public life; that is, over families, social groups, workers' unions, business enterprises, nations and the world. The right of Christ to reign demands that the temporal order and legislation conform themselves to the Christian teachings. Progressivism rejects the Christian public social order and derides it as Constantinian, Gregorian or sociological Catholicism, with the purpose of presenting it in an odious aspect. There is no lack of priests, as the Dominican Liégé, who affirm that working for the Christian social order, for Christian civilization, is to do more negative and nefarious work than Communism itself.

In rejecting the need of striving to implement a Christian social order, progressivists find themselves bound to accept the laic, liberal, socialist or communist city of our modern civilization. Herein lies the veritable error and deviation of Christian progressivism, in seeking an alliance of the Church with the modern world.

In calling the world modern we do not mean it in a temporal sense but rather refer to a qualitative designation of the nature of modern society, and especially of the spirit of such society. Modern society, which began with the Renaissance and continues with naturalism, liberalism, socialism, and communism in public life, is a society which tends to reject God and to make of man a god who, with his creative effort will achieve his destiny and attain happiness. That is why, as we shall see later on, humanism, which begins with the Renaissance,3 ends in communism, in which man constitutes himself as the exclusive creator of his own destiny, who not only does not need God but to whom God is a hindrance and an annoyance, inasmuch as belief in God moves him to elude placing the effort of his creative action upon himself. That is why, to Marx, religion is an alienation which diminishes man.
This alliance of the Church with the modern world, which is promoted by progressivist Christianity, leads them to assign the category of supreme sciences to psychology and sociology; to psychology, which analyzes the internal conditioning of man, and to sociology, which directs and leads the external conditioning. Man, thus removed from the Christian social order, labors in the laic order of psychology under the influence of Freud and in sociology under the influence of Marx.

Progressivist Christianity, especially today, tends to unite communism with Christianity. To that end, it incurs in grave errors and deviations. In the first place, in making of communism and Marxism a true “humanism” with positive values which ought to be saved. It is clear that to make such an outlandish assertion, Marxism and communism have to be taken apart and in that way negate their totality character, which is affirmed in their dialectic contexture. Marxism is a dialectic materialism which makes of man exclusively a worker, whose value is to be measured by his productive efficacy in the construction of communist society. Marxist man is a degraded being to whom his divine dignity, his human dignity, and even his animal dignity have been taken away, to turn him into a simple cog in the communist machinery. It is absurd to label humanist something which constitutes the degradation of man.

Progressivist Christianity is likewise prone to value communism for its fundamental rejection of capitalism. On partaking in the dialectics of capitalism-communism or bourgeois-proletarian, and rejecting capitalism as the prime enemy, the progressivist Christian is forced to accept communism. But this is a false dialectics, proper of a society which elevates economic values to the topmost plane. But above the economic are the political, cultural and religious values.

A theologian of the caliber of the Dominican Congar has come to say that it is necessary to “replace the economic structures founded on profits as the engine of the economic activity” (Nouvelles de Chretienté, number. 432, p.30). But suppressing the profits is tantamount to suppressing private capital and implementing collectivism.

Additionally, the progressivist Christian adopts a misconception of the “Sense of History” as if this were inexorably headed towards communism, with which it would behoove us to pact without delay. But even if communism, as tomorrow the Antichrist, are to impose themselves in History, this is no reason to accept them. Rather, on the contrary, it is necessary to repulse them so that only Our Lord may reign. Just as the Catholics who, as Lammenais, perversely embraced liberalism in the last century, so do progressivist Catholics nowadays who mix up Catholicism with communism.

Under this progressivist error which wants to ally Christianity with communism, there is a more general error which consists of allying the modern world — in the above-described sense of laic and atheist — with the Church; error condemned in Syllabus' proposition 80, which states. “The Roman Pontiff can and should reconcile himself and compromise with 'progress', liberalism and modern civilization.”

If modern civilization involves the absolute autonomy of man before God, it is quite clear that the Church cannot reconcile itself with it. And we should not believe that this could have been true in the past but has lost all validity. On the contrary, it has been constant teaching since Pius IX until John XXIII. In fact, this last Pope, in such an important document as Mater et Magistra, comes to affirm that the “Church finds itself facing this heavy task: make modern civilization conform to a truly human order and the principles of the Gospel”. Which means that, in John XXIII's opinion, modern civilization is neither conforming to a truly human order nor to the principles of the Gospel. This had been already admonished by Pius XII when he pointed out that it was an entire world which had to be rebuilt from its foundations; from savage, make him human, according to God's heart. Already Pius XII again, speaking to the chaplains of Catholic Youth on September 8, 1953, exhorted them to feel “moved to fight against a world which is as inhuman as it is anti-Christian”

This taking of position before modern civilization leads us to demand a formulation of the basic principles of a Theology of History to pass judgment on modern civilization. Does modern civilization which develops from the Renaissance to now in a continuous process of greater materialism — from naturalism to communism — imports a progress of man as man or rather his regression and degradation? Herein the gist of our next conversation.

Someone may ask: What degree of development has Christian progressivism reached among us? We must say that it is developing quite rapidly; not only in the Greater Buenos Aires but also in the rest of the Country. Young priests, seminarians and some of the laity in Catholic organizations: the “progressivist” group “Epoca”, almost openly communist, was already denounced last year. It would be now necessary to add groups of young university students with publications such as 'Tandil 1963' or 'Cambio' on economics and humanism. There are priests very active in this task, which leaders of sections of the Communist Party consider party affiliates and which exert a very decisive action on seminarians and laics. All this makes us believe that a braid is being woven of priests, religious, seminarians, and laics of representative groups in Catholic circles to impose Christian progressivism upon us.

(To be continued.)
Go to Part 2

domingo, 8 de octubre de 2017

La Revolución, Soros, y el Ataque a Occidente

por Dr. Boyd D. Cathey

Tomado de:
Traducido del inglés por Roberto Hope

A veces mi pensamiento me lleva cuatro décadas atrás a mis años de estudiante universitario. Entre una escuela de graduados y otra, trabajé como asistente del escritor conservador y filósofo Russel Kirk en Mecosta, Michigan. Siendo yo un muchacho sureño, lo significativo que recuerdo acerca del clima de allá, es que el suelo se cubría de nieve — ¡y mucha! — desde cerca del Día de Gracias hasta el mes de abril. Así que, fuera de mis deberes secretariales con el Dr. Kirk, tenía yo mucho tiempo para leer (los Kirk no tenían televisión) y con la biblioteca de Russel, de más de 30,000 libros, tenía la cornucopia de un bibliófilo al alcance de mis manos. No sólo eso, sino que, además, él era uno de los “profesores” más ampliamente leídos que un joven estudiante de post-grado podría jamás tener.

Así, más allá de su vasta colección de historias y biografías, pude leer de la gran literatura, incluyendo algunos clásicos de espiritualidad católica. Además de Jonathan Swift, Sir Walter Scott, Robert Louis Stevenson, estaban las obras de G.K. Chesterton, Hilaire Belloc, y los antiguos. Las vidas paralelas de Plutarco, la Metamorfosis de Ovidio, Dante y, de mayor influencia, escritos que alteran la vida, del místico español San Juan de la Cruz. Los menciono no por jactarme de haberlos leído, sino solamente para decir que mi año con el Dr. Kirk fue muy fructífero de diversas maneras, que sólo ahora alcanzo a comprender por completo.

Cuando reflexiono y escribo ensayos en estos días, vuelven a mi mente escenas y citas de muchos de esos clásicos, y muchas veces parecen encajar y apoyar mi narrativa. Preparando este ensayo, recordé una cita del gran primer ministro conservador británico del siglo XIX Benjamín Disraeli, mencionado prominentemente en la famosa obra de Kirk 'The Conservative Mind'. Viene de una de las novelas de Disraeli, Coningsby. Aquí va: “Así ves pues, mi estimado Coningsby, que el mundo está gobernado por personajes muy distintos de los que se imaginan aquéllos que no están tras los bastidores”

Disraeli escribió esas palabras hace más de 170 años. Pero ahora, conforme exploramos los decadentes restos de una cultura que una vez fue orgullosamente el “Occidente Cristiano”, o sea, la civilización europea que heredamos, que ha estado con nosotros y que nos ha formado y templado durante casi dos milenios — conforme contemplamos los ataques sin límites a este legado, queda aparente que la decadencia y decrepitud ha venido no por accidente, ni siquiera por un ataque frontal. Más bien, el gran éxito que ha tenido la Revolución Marxista ha sido el subvertir e influir para transformar desde adentro la cultura de Occidente, casi de una manera clandestina.

Por ahí por la época de la Primera Guerra Mundial, el filósofo comunista, Antonio Gramsci, formuló una teoría que incluía una disquisición de lo que llamó “hegemonía cultural”. El brillante Gramsci, observando el fracaso del “comunismo bélico” para derribar el orden tradicional de Europa por la fuerza militar, comprendió que la Revolución Marxista nunca podría tener éxito en su campaña contra el Occidente Cristiano histórico por medio del conflicto armado abierto. A pesar de la devastación y de los efectos debilitantes del liberalismo del siglo XIX, aún dominaba un patrón tradicionalista, cultural y religioso — una “hegemonía cultural” —  que guiaba gran parte del pensamiento occidental, fijaba normas y gobernaba la conducta. Esa hegemonía cultural, postulaba Gramsci, debe ser derrocada y reemplazada. Occidente solamente podría ser conquistado si su cultura tradicional y sus bases religiosas, fundadas en una fe cristiana ortodoxa, fueran transformadas.

Y era la Iglesia Católica, y sus enseñanzas sociales y políticas, las que constituían el obstáculo principal al, y el enemigo del, Marxismo. Gramsci entonces enfatizó la infiltración y subversión de la Iglesia como el medio supremo para eventualmente llevar a efecto la Revolución. La cultura occidental — la civilización occidental — estaba basada fundamentalmente en y sobre la Fe, en el valioso legado que vino de Jerusalén, de Atenas y de Roma. Cortar esa conección, contaminar y subvertir ese fundamento, y la transformación cultural llegaría inevitablemente.

A fines del siglo XIX el gran escritor tradicionalista Marcelino Menéndez y Pelayo, en su Historia de los Heterodoxos Españoles apercibió a la España Católica: “España, evangelizadora de la mitad del orbe; España, martillo de herejes, luz de Trento, espada de Roma, cuna de San Ignacio…; ésa es nuestra grandeza y nuestra unidad; no tenemos otra.”

Como Menéndez y Pelayo, Gramscí entendía esta máxima, esta verdad sobre la Europa y el Occidente. Si se infecta la base de una cultura, se pervierten y llegan a alterarse sus creencias fundamentales, su moral, su concepto del bien y del mal, sus ideas sobre la ley, sus mismos significados lingüísticos  —  si se logran estas cosas, de igual forma se alterará su política y su cultura. Sin la Fe como su “escudo y broquel”, Europa quedaría entonces indefensa ante los asaltos del Marxismo y ante la creación de un Nuevo Orden Mundial, que es uno esencialmente sin Dios, paganizado, y antítesis autoritaria de un orden cristiano que fue establecido con la sangre y devoción de los mártires, los santos y los reyes cristianos.

Este último siglo ha sido testigo de la implantación de esta estrategia por los Marxistas culturales y los revolucionarios entre nosotros. La oposición al Occidente cristiano desplegada por los comunistas soviéticos más conservadores, que desafiaban frontalmente nuestras instituciones y cultura resultaron ser intrascendentes. Pero la subversión interna y la infiltración han sido singularmente exitosas.

La Iglesia, desde el papado de San Pío X, y luego de los de Pío XI y Pío XII, identificó la amenaza apremiante del comunismo y el socialismo. Sin embargo, la estrategia de Gramsci prendió en sus propias filas, primero de manera subrepticia, pero ya en los años 50's y 60's abiertamente con el éxito que tuvo el Personalismo de Teilhard de Chardin y la aceptación de las teorías sobre la Iglesia en la Sociedad propagadas por escritores tales como el Padre John Courtney Murray, y el floreciente 'neo-liberalismo' de Alemania y de los Países Bajos  —  lea 'El Rhin Desemboca en el Tíber' de Ralph Wiltgen. Y con la 'apertura a sinistra' del Concilio Vaticano II  —  esa infame apertura a la izquierda'  —   se le abrieron las puertas de par en par a la Revolución, eclesiástica, política y culturalmente.

En los Estados Unidos, la larga penetración del marxismo 'cultural' en nuestras instituciones comenzó en serio en el medio académico, en nuestras escuelas y universidades. Diversos observadores señalan el tremendamente extendido éxito de la 'Escuela de Frankfurt' de intelectuales marxistas, quienes, siendo judíos fueron expulsados de la Alemania Nacional- Socialista en los años 30´s, y se establecieron luego en los Estados Unidos, en la Universidad de Columbia. Desde ese seguro foro ejercieron una increíble influencia en casi todo aspecto de la vida intelectual estadounidense y europea.

De hecho, como estudiante de post-grado, recuerdo que diversas obras de Herbert Marcuse (en filosofía), Theodor Adorno (en sociología y teoría de la música), Max Horkheimer (en psicología social), Erich Fromm (en psicoanálisis) y Jürgen Habermas (en historia) estaban muy en boga  —  varios de mis profesores nos las imponían a mi y a mis compañeros de la escuela de graduados. De lo que comenzaba a darme cuenta desde entonces, tomado en conjunto, con el soporte ideológico adicional de escritores tan influyentes como Franz Fanon (sobre el colonialismo, el imperialismo y la ‘opresión’ de la raza blanca) y Michel Foucault (sobre la transformación de estructuras políticas y sociales y sobre la teoría crítica), era que estaba ocurriendo el ejercicio de un esfuerzo universal para alterar, no solamente los patrones de pensamiento y los objetivos sociales y políticos, sino nuestro mismo idioma.

Y había muy poca oposición efectiva: la fuerza intelectual dominante en Occidente durante el Siglo XIX y mucha parte del Siglo XX era un blando liberalismo, intelectualmente estéril, incapaz de repeler las desgastantes críticas que se lanzaban contra él por el marxismo cultural. De hecho, podría decirse que el liberalismo preparó el terreno para el éxito marxista.

Aquellos escritores y profesores 'liberales' de antaño habían hecho todo lo posible por desacreditar y desmantelar, política, social y religiosamente, un orden tradicional todavía más antiguo; sin embargo nada tenían con qué reemplazarlo, que fuese mejor o más permanente. Sus teorías acerca de la 'democracia liberal', de la 'igualdad', de los 'derechos civiles' y de la 'liberalización', propugnadas e implantadas para tomar el lugar de la fidelidad a la tradición heredada, de la creencia en una ortodoxia religiosa, de la existencia de órdenes sociales, y del reconocimiento inherente de que la desigualdad es una condición natural de la vida  —  estas panaceas liberales, habiendo debilitado tanto al tejido político como al social de la sociedad occidental histórica, dejaron a Europa y a América abiertas a los atractivos seductores de un marxismo que no era como el soviético, aburrido y cleptocrático.

El futuro del mundo estaba, ya no con esos comisarios septuagenarios que anualmente, el día primero de mayo, se paraban inmóviles en la Plaza Roja para pasar revista al poderío militar soviético. Ahora estaba con los marxistas culturales, quienes durante varias décadas habían estado revolucionando el pensamiento, las aspiraciones, y hasta el mismo lenguaje de Occidente  —  y cuya mentalidad, cuyo patrón, no sólo había revigorizado un marxismo que ya se daba por muerto, sino que había establecido su preeminencia y 'hegemonía cultural' sobre un vasto espectro del pensamiento y de la cultura de todo el Occidente.

Esto, entonces, es con lo que nos enfrentamos aquéllos de nosotros que seguimos siendo fieles a esa mucho más antigua tradición, esa herencia cristiana ortodoxa y occidental. En todo el panorama político y cultural, hasta aquéllos que supuestamente se oponen a este creciente progresismo  —  y a su ataque final a lo que queda del legado que hemos recibido y que peligra severamente  —  esos supuestos opositores, emplean su lenguaje y aceptan tácitamente sus objetivos finales. De esa manera, los así llamados neoconservadores y sus muchos seguidores del bando Republicano, sirven, de su particular y tortuosa manera, tanto para hacer viables como para glorificar las conquistas de los progresistas y los avances marxistas más recientes. De manera semejante, entre la supuesta 'oposición religiosa' a la Revolución, aquéllos que llamamos 'neo-católicos' sancionan y santifican los cambios radicales salidos del Vaticano II y los tratan de defender como conservadores.

Sin embargo, el conflicto universal que parecía que habíamos perdido no ha concluido. El pasado noviembre dio prueba de ello  —  política y culturalmente. El despertar esporádico aquí en los Estados Unidos y el florecimiento de una reacción populista y tradicionalista en Europa, lo ilustran claramente. Y la proliferación de organizaciones y asociaciones dedicadas a la ortodoxia católica y a la defensa de la fe tradicional sigue al compás de la más reciente de las fatuidades que nos llegan de la “Roma ocupada”.

Esa es precisamente la razón por la que vemos la creciente, febril y desenfrenada reacción de polifacéticas fuerzas, tanto las del “Estado Profundo” progresista como las internacionalistas del Nuevo Orden Mundial. Esa reacción toma muchas formas; en los Estados Unidos particularmente, la de una guerra abierta contra el Presidente Trump (y más contra su plan de cambios) librada por los grandes medios de comunicación y sus adeptos de ambos partidos políticos, del medio universitario y de la cultura popular. Y, en el campo religioso, con los intentos de silenciar y marginar a aquel clero católico que se levanta en lucha contra la auto- demolición de la Iglesia.

Entre las 'eminencias grises' que influyen en todo el mundo  — 'padrinos' espirituales y políticos  —  de la ofensiva progresista mundial, está el multimillonario internacional George Soros, cuyos tentáculos alcanzan casi cada rincón del mundo y cuyas Organizaciones No Gubernamentales (ONGs) laboran sobre el terreno para influenciar y subvertir a toda nación que se resista a incorporarse al Nuevo Orden Mundial, la verdadera y ulterior meta del Estado Profundo, y de esa forma alcanzar la etapa final y el triunfo de la nueva hegemonía cultural concebida por Antonio Gramsci.

La sangrienta visión de Soros coincide, a conveniencia, con los objetivos generales 'globalistas' de la clase dirigente del Estado Profundo. Con su pirámide de fundaciones donadoras escalonadas, sus ONGs y su vinculación estrecha con los dirigentes de la Unión Europea, de Washington, de Wall Street y del Vaticano, impulsa su propio itinerario. Pero en los grandes medios de comunicación jamás va usted a oír o leer una sola palabra acerca de los nefastos tentáculos de influencia de George Soros. Si usted menciona su nombre o hace referencia a su influencia tras bastidores en el campo internacional, inmediatamente lo calificarán de maniático de las “teorías de la conspiración” o de algo peor.

Sin embargo, Soros encaja en la descripción que hizo Disraeli hace 170 años. Si alguna vez ha habido confirmación de esa observación, él la ejemplifica. Él es la epítome de esa cara oculta de la “marea teñida en sangre” de la Revolución contra Dios y el hombre, de la que previno el poeta William Butler Yeats en 1919  —  precisamente en la época en que Antonio Gramsci estaba escribiendo las teorías que habrían de probar ser fatales para Occidente  —  y es la misma época en que San Pío X previno al mundo cristiano del bacilo fatalmente infeccioso del modernismo.

Aquél que conoce la verdad debe actuar conforme a ella. Durante el año pasado, el verdadero carácter, la verdadera cara de la Revolución se ha revelado como quizás nunca antes. Aunque carecemos de muchos de los recursos y de las armas de que goza el Enemigo, aquéllos de nosotros que estemos resueltos no sólo a defender lo que queda de nuestro patrimonio cultural y de nuestra civilización occidental sino, de ser posible, a restaurarlas, debemos ser arrojados y astutos; tan sabios como Robert E. Lee, y tan pacientes y calculadores como nuestros Enemigos, que entienden que, para conquistar lo aparentemente inconquistable, tendrá que tomar tiempo y, sobre todo, persistencia, inteligencia y constancia. Y, para nosotros, el fundamento de todo ello es nuestra Fe.