Progressive Corruption: Altruism

Progressivism, leftism, liberalism, or whatever you may call it has a veritable uniqueness to how it impinges upon particle goods or truths. Leftism is the ideological embodiment of cancer. Like cancer, which is a disordered mutation of a cell, leftism is the disordering of, among many things, goodness or virtue. Betwixt the things it disorders lies altruism. This, also known as charity, is a virtue. Not only did our Lord God teach charity,

One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the LORD, And He will repay him for his good deed. – Proverbs 19:17

but it was also understood by the virtues pagans such as the Stoics.

Every mans life is sufficient. But thine is nearly finished, though thy soul reverences not itself, but places thy felicity in the souls of others. -Marcus Aurelius

To be altruistic and charitable, when done within the parameters of prudence is indeed a noble virtue to hold. However, like any virtue it must be properly ordered and contained within a framework, lest it be corrupted into something less then desirable.

This is precisely what leftism has done to such a virtue. It not only removes the prudential judgment required to maintain altruistic acts, but also removes the moral guidance containing it. It degrades into a holiness spiral of virtue signaling and a vicious propagation of so called “rights”. As far as imprudence goes, altruism becomes degraded once sound judgment is removed. Let us put this into a real life example.

A homeless man stands at the street corner. You could, 

A. Give him money in the form of cash. 

B. Buy him a meal or give him a jacket. 

The latter example, option B, would be the prudent decision. The first option is imprudent because money, although containing the possibility of helping him, runs a very high risk of being spent unwisely by the homeless man. While the latter option is prudent because it addresses his immediate needs.

Imprudent decisions however, are not exclusive to leftists. What is exclusive to leftism is the moral derailment of altruism. We see this in moments such as “gay rights” or “feminism”. Due to the loose moral parameters of liberalism it has characterized such movements as being altruistic or charitable. “We must selflessly fight for these peoples “rights”. Between the imprudent judgments and the destruction of the moral order it creates what we see today. To further top this all off, leftists seem to do things not out of a true sense of altruism, that being out of selflessness, but out of a desire to signal their statues of “virtue”. It becomes nothing more then a charade.

The truly noble exercise altruistic deeds with prudence and a true desire to help another, without expecting a reward or recognition. Those who are charitable with sound morals and good judgement, never speak of it. Selflessness requires one to be selfless, which includes the negation of an earthly reward. In a room full of people, the one that speaks the loudest of his altruistic acts, is most certainly doing it for the wrong reasons. While the man you least expect may be the most charitable.

Note: I intend to do a little series on Progressive Corruption and to clear away the deformity that the left brings to particular goods. To once more restore these goods to the proper order they belong. A reactionary understanding of things, if you will.

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Latae Sententiae

Latae Sententiae is a latin term in the Catholic Church that means “sentenced passed”. It refers to excommunication. Many times we hear people ask why politicians who claim to be Catholic aren’t excommunicated by the Pope for their stances on things such as abortion or sodomy. Technically they are excommunicated. Late Sententiae was created because the Pope cannot go around excommunicating everyone publicly. It would be a difficult job, especially in these modern dark times. If you do some searching around you can find a list of criteria that will lead to excommunication.

With this being said, I believe IMO, that the Pope should publicly declare particular politicians as excommunicated. Not because they aren’t already excommunicated but because many people are unaware of this. They need to be made an example of and publicly declared against, so the faithful and outsiders know, without a doubt, that these traitors have been cast out (at least until they make reparations and seek to correct their ways).

Prudential Judgement

Many modern Christians, including Catholics have done away with the virtue of prudence in their judgements and have given way to judgements made solely based off emotion. This is a dangerous flaw in the thought process of man. It leads to dangerous judgements and depending on what is being judged, can bring destruction on a massive scale.

What is prudential judgement? The catechism defines it below.

1806 Prudence is the virtue that disposes practical reason to discern our true good in every circumstance and to choose the right means of achieving it; “the prudent man looks where he is going.” “Keep sane and sober for your prayers.” Prudence is “right reason in action,” writes St. Thomas Aquinas, following Aristotle. It is not to be confused with timidity or fear, nor with duplicity or dissimulation. It is called auriga virtutum (the charioteer of the virtues); it guides the other virtues by setting rule and measure. It is prudence that immediately guides the judgment of conscience. The prudent man determines and directs his conduct in accordance with this judgment. With the help of this virtue we apply moral principles to particular cases without error and overcome doubts about the good to achieve and the evil to avoid.

In short, prudential judgement is the act of applying moral principles to a situation in attempt to achieve the good. Its purpose is to avoid evil. Now, some things are not open to prudential judgement, for not everything requires moral meditation. There are things that are always wrong, known as “intrinsic evils”. Examples of these evils would be abortion, sodomy, fornication, or genocide. Now it is important to notice that I stated particular actions, which may be different then their overarching themes. The theme of abortion falls into the category or taking the life of a human being. Killing in itself is not a intrinsic evil, however unjust killing (murder) is. Killing in self defense, warfare (this can depend), or for the good of society such as capital punishment are not in themselves evil. Sodomy is another evil that is intrinsic, although homosexuality itself is not evil. It is disordered, yes, but if a homosexual refrains from acting on his disordered desires and lives a celibate life then he is not guilty of the sin. The same goes for fornication. Sex itself is not evil, but outside of the procreative and marital context it is a sin. Genocide falls under the category of killing (most of the time).

So what requires prudential judgment? Lets take a current situation and crisis that requires prudential judgment. The immigration crisis. Now many modern Christians believe that allowing thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of “refugees” into Occidental land is practicing of the virtue of charity. Perhaps, but charity many times requires prudent judgement to be applied to see if it is the correct moral decision. Example being this: Prudent charity would involve feeding the hungry, while imprudent charity would involve just giving cash to a homeless man. One act addresses the real and present problem, his starvation, while the latter isn’t prudent, because many a times he will use the money unwisely. Similarly the immigration crisis must be approached prudently. Is it prudent to allow the influx of thousands of minorities from a foreign culture into a host culture? No, it is not. Not only has this proven through history to lay waste to the host culture, and displace the ethnic majority, but as we see from recent examples such as Cologne, that it does irreversible damage. Crimes such as murder and rape have skyrocketed, billions of dollars have been spent to accommodate these people (even though natives still suffer in poverty themselves), infrastructure has been vandalized, and Christianity has been slandered and worse oppressed in an attempt not to offend the immigrants. It is NOT prudent to allow such a thing to happen. It has wrought nothing but destruction on a massive scale and is a threat not only to the common good, but the history, culture and identity of the host. Our ancestors are turning over in their graves knowing that the Mohammedans that they spilt blood to keep out are being welcomed in with no resistance or prudent thought. Worse they are being accommodated as a priority over that of the native population. Crimes are swept under the rug, opposition is silenced and laws are being changed. History will remember us as the fools who lacked any spine. Fools who traded the beauty of Christendom for the liberal humanitarian creed of universalism and brought about our own demise.

Warped concepts of virtue plague the modern man. Love is now nothing more then affection. Charity is nothing more then pandering to the demands of the sinner.

“Tolerance and apathy are the last virtues of a dying society” -Aristotle

Emotionalism will be our death….

“It Doesn’t Make Me ‘Feel’ Good”

“How impervious to things spiritual, my heart! No savor in pious reading, no pleasure in meditation nor in prayer!” – St. Bernard 

Quite often in my discussion with some of my more nontraditional Evangelical friends, and even among modern Catholics I hear them talk of how they don’t like the Catholic church, or for the Catholics, don’t like some priests, because they don’t feel uplifted or consolidated. What I mean by this is that many people seek God with the wrong intention, or for a better word, expectation. People want to “feel” uplifted, consolidated, happy or affirmed. They want an experience, not a trial or the truth. It is no wonder that Joel Olsteen is one of the most popular telievangelists. He tells you what you want to hear. That if you follow God he will reward you with riches, and happiness and all sorts of temporal gifts. This is a problem.

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The Christian road is not shortcut to a better life. On the contrary it is much of the time a trial, a hardship full of suffering. This is not to say that you won’t find peace, because if done correctly God will bring you peace and joy. But peace and joy are not “feelings” or emotions, but states of being. In all the turmoil be at peace and know that God is with you and that in the end he will have the last word. Be joyous knowing that if you follow God you will attain the kingdom of heaven. Joy is a state of mind and an orientation of the heart. It is a settled state of contentment, confidence and hope. Happiness on the other hand is a fleeting feeling. One can be unhappy, yet joyous. One can be in the midst of much turmoil around them, yet be at peace.

This is important to understand. The pursuit of a pious life is not one of an easy path, it will require much of you. Consolidations are reserved for the untried soul to keep them on the path to sanctity. But as many of the Saints show us, these consolidations will fade once one truly picks up their cross. The true rewards abide in heaven and are reserved for those who attain it. The earthly life is a place to gain merit, which can only be achieved through suffering. To lead this life you must seek the truth and accept it, and that truth is many times harsh and difficult to accept.

So I say to you, do not seek a religious service that panders to your feelings, but one that seeks to worship God in the most reverent way possible. Put your mind on God, and not on your own desires, but on his will. It will require all that you have to attain salvation, but the reward is for eternity.

Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth. Psalm 46:10

Bay Area Petition for the Removal of Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone

About two weeks ago more the 100 Catholic “leaders” (which is laughable) signed a petition to Pope Francis for the removal of Archbishop Salvator Cordileone because of his “intolerant” views. Full Article Here 

First off let me state that Cordileone’s teaching is NOT intolerance and is fully in line with Catholic Teaching.

The petition was a reaction to the “hard-line” stance the Archbishop takes with regards to Catholic Teaching. Among these complaints are the banning of altar girls by appointed priests, a pamphlet put out by an elementary school that talks about the moral evils of masturbation and sodomy, and the condemnation of homosexual acts. Let me break each part down for those who don’t understand the teaching.

Alter Girls 

First of let me say that the use of girls instead of boys for altar service does not violate Church doctrine, it is however a change from tradition. Furthermore, that tradition of only male altar servers did have a purpose. Prior to the installment of Seminaries (where men go to study for the Priesthood) altar service was the means to becoming a priest. They would become an apprentice to the priest and learn how to give out the sacraments and learn other knowledge of the faith. When he was ready he would be presented to the Bishop for acceptance into the priesthood. This, however, is no longer the case because of Seminaries. The tradition of boys only however is a positive tradition and allows boys to discern the vocation of Priesthood and find out if it is their calling or not. So you see there is a purpose behind this tradition. The use of girls on the altar does not cause any damage but leads no where. Women cannot become priests (a topic for another time) and therefore the alter service is not as fruitful. The banning of alter girls is not “sexist” or out of spite, it is a tradition that has served a purpose for a long time. The utilization of alter girls does not violate any rules, but ultimately does not serve the same purpose as boys. It is no more then a petty complaint used as a tactic by the left to damage the Church. In all honesty if not being able to serve at the alter causes you to leave your faith then you have more problems to work out then just that. If this answer is not satisfactory to you I advise you move on over to EWTN or Catholic.com and do a search. You will find not only the same explanation I have given but also a much deeper meaning. I advise you read Rev. Peter R. Pilsners sermon on the matter, which is actually where I got much of my information on the topic. (Here) He goes into detail about the relationship of altar servers and priests and the benefit both parties can get out of it.

School Pamphlet

Masturbation and Sodomy are sinful. That is taught in almost every denomination of Christianity. If you have an issue with a Catholic school teaching Christian doctrine then I don’t know how to help you. Here are 31 Bible Versus on the matter. Furthermore, the pamphlet that was used was the normal examination of conscience that is used before confession. The children were preparing their first confession and the teachers did not show them out to examine their conscience so they were given the normal one. When realized that it talked of sodomy and such it was quickly changed to more age appropriate ones.

Homosexual Actions

Don’t like the Catholic Churches stance on homosexual relations? Feel free to join the Anglican Church and bask in its’ liberal heresy. In all seriousness though there is a deep misunderstanding on what the Church teaches about homosexuality. The main claims are we are “intolerant”, “bigots”, “hate filled”, or “tyrants trying to take away freedom.” For those of you who read my posts on Relativism and Tolerance this shouldn’t be surprising to you. In the Christian worldview marriage is designed for a man and a women for the purpose of having children, in the most basic sense (another topic for another time). The problem is that people in the west think that love is based on emotional intensity toward another, or sexual desire. Neither are true. Not only does this alone eliminate the reasoning for homosexual marriage in the Christian sense but the raw natural fact that homosexual relationships are unfruitful and do not produce anything except a mutual pleasure for the partners. Can homosexuals truly love each other? I have no doubt, but it still doesn’t change the circumstances. Just because you have a desire for the same-sex does not mean it is okay to follow through with. It doesn’t negate the sin. Furthermore, love in its self does not constitute the right of marriage. I love my family members, my roommates, and a multitude of other people, but should I be able to marry a family member or anyone just because I love them? The answer is no. If you put it like that then the only other attempt to justify it is by emotional intensity or physical attraction which also does not constitute a marriage. If I were to base my marriage requirements off emotional intensity or sexual desire I would have a list of people to marry, but because I believe that marriages’ main purpose is procreation, and growing in your faith with your wife/husband it changes the dynamic. I still hope to be sexually attracted to my wife and feel deep emotions for her but they are not the main reason to marry, they just aid in its fruitfulness.  As Vatican II puts it,

Marriage and conjugal love are by their nature ordained toward the begetting and education of children. Children are really the supreme gift of marriage and contribute very substantially to the welfare of their parents.

Or the Catechism of the Council of Trent,

Marriage is the natural, indissoluble union, perfected by the Sacrament, between one man and one woman directed towards the purpose of preserving the human race by generating and raising children. Marriage is also ordered to the mutual help of spouses and the remedy for sexual desire. This definition of marriage as a natural institution can be arrived at by common sense. Nature implants in men and women an instinct that impels them to seek the companionship of marriage and in this companionship, husband and wife are able to hope for help and an easing of their physical discomforts as they get older.

Homosexual relations/marriage is a controversial topic and is something I plan on going deeper into at a different time, but the main point here is that the open letter to the Pope about Archbishop Cordileone’s view on homosexual actions is no different then the Popes view. Condemnation of homosexual relations does not mean we hate homosexuals, it is actually out of love and concern for the eternal destination of others souls that the Church teaches such things.

Conclusion 

In conclusion we can see that this petition is completely unchristian and any “Catholic leader” who signed it needs to seriously reevaluate their faith. The Church is not some Non-Government Organization or Interest Group that is subject to change with the world around it. No, it is based on scripture and the word of God, and that teaching is absolute. If you have a problem with one of these teachings then you are taking up issue with God himself. We did not make these rules, God did.