Category Archives: Atheists

Police and thieves in the streets… (Police good. Thieves bad.)

May Day and the role of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Portland, Oregon.

Portland police are warning May Day demonstrators that violations of the law will not be tolerated, and now we know why. This from an Occupy Portland Tweet:


And this,

Their faces may be hidden, but they have their own propaganda machine, or as the young rads would have us call it today, an “Information Warfare Spoke” from which the following video originates.

–notice how it begins by commemorating the history of the first May Day in America (1886 Haymarket Massacre in Chicago) when a dynamite bomb was thrown at police. Yep, dynamite bomb. And according to these useful idiots that same world returns to America on May 1st, 2012…

The cohorts responsible for the above propaganda call themselves The Portland Liberation Organizing Council (PLOC). They believe in [quote], “collective control of community resources, including land, housing and space to organize.”

For the uninitiated or uneducated, this is called Communism. A failing philosophy and political system that was and remains ultimately responsible before God and man for the deaths of millions of real living innocent persons.

According to their website,

PLOC is coordinated through a spokes council comprised of working clusters (see diagram). Each cluster is comprised of groups or members within groups from the radical community that are focused on a specific area of work.

So, Portland police aside, guess if they have their own way about it the specific focus of work on May 1st this year will be that “nobody, and nothing works” and anarchy alone prevails in the streets of Portland until Capitalism is done away with.

Okay, we get it.

Radicalism and anarchy is widely associated with the Occupy Movement and May Day is its big rally and cry-in, not to be confused with love-in, peace-out, or even justice.  But for Catholics that’s not what May 1st, or for that matter, the entire month of May represents–and no Catholic or parish should ever support this rubbish. That’s why faithful Catholics in Western Oregon should start asking the Archpdx chancery why the spokes council meets every Thursday at a Catholic Church? Again, from the source:

This is a day when those heavily involved in working groups within Occupy Portland have an opportunity to exchange announcements, connect, and decide proposals affecting the inner workings of Occupy Portland. Anyone not associated with a group is welcome to attend and participate by sitting in the open caucus. Currently held in the Cafeteria at St. Francis.

Here’s a question I would like answered: Why does the Archdiocese of Portland, Oregon, permit St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church to house, promote, and support Occupy Portland, when it’s obvious that in pursuing its goals OP plans, promotes, and enables lawlessness and violence, in effect endangering society?

I can’t believe the Sacred Heart is pleased with His body contributing to the scandal of police and thieves slugging it out in the streets on May 1st, the feast of St. Joseph the Worker. I do believe, however, that the following suggestion would be more merciful and in accord with the mind of Christ: May 1 is celebrated in Communist countries as the Day of the International Solidarity of Workers. Today would be a good day to pray for atheistic Communism’s influence to cease and a proper application of the principles explained by Leo XIII in Rerum novarum and John Paul II in Centesimus annus to be the guide used by nations–including our own.

To voice your charitable objections…

+++++++++++++
ARCHDIOCESE OF PORTLAND – WESTERN OREGON
838 E. Burnside St.Portland, OR 97214-1895
http://www.archdpdx.org/

Most Reverend John G. Vlazny

abjgv@archdpdx.org

rjohnson@archdpdx.org (AB secretary)

Mary Jo Tully – Chancellor
mjtully@archdpdx.org
503-234-5334 Fax 503-234-2545

The Archdiocesan Pastoral Council (western Oregon)
http://www.archdpdx.org/

END OF POST

HT/Catholic Culture

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VIDEO: The horrifying culmination of abortive societies?

If society continues along the path of devaluing the child, treating children as property to acquire or dispose of at will, might we not expect in the future to accept the horrible imitation?

END ABORTION WITH YOUR VOTE

Big Mountain Jesus statue gets reprieve, for now

A statue of Jesus Christ has stood with outstretched arms atop Big Mountain for almost 60 years, but it remains uncertain how much longer it m…

via Outcry over Big Mountain Jesus statue – Whitefish Pilot: Whitefish Pilot.

END OF POST

VIDEO: Let Us Pray for the Vandals of Rome.

It is written of all men concerning God, that “They shall look on him whom they pierced.” [John 19:37]. And like the unbelieving Apostle Thomas, these hooligan’s too will drop to their knees, if not their bellies; yes, their souls as well as flesh will lie open in obedience to the all-powerful presence of the Creator of heaven and earth… They will look upon His Pierced Heart and every wound he suffered on behalf of their every transgression; and at that very moment, a great lament will take hold within their own hearts, marking them indelibly with regret–because they offended the all-holy Mother of God before her Son–the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Let us pray, as surely as Mary, the Queen of Peace is, that this occurs within the lives of these vandals before The Last Judgement–that what is also written within sacred scripture, may be true of them: “He who is forgiven much, will love much.” [Luke 7:36-50]

VIDEO: http://pt.gloria.tv/?media=205626

The Pillars of Unbelief: Six modern thinkers who’ve harmed the Christian mind — Part III: Karl Marx (1818-1883)

SOURCE: (3) The Pillars of Unbelief – Karl Marx

By Peter Kreeft

Among the many opponents of the Christian faith, Marxism is certainly not the most important, imposing or impressive philosophy in history.

But it has, until recently, clearly been the most influential. A comparison of 1917, 1947 and 1987 world maps will show how inexorably this system of thought flowed so as to inundate one-third of the world in just two generations — a feat rivaled only twice in history, by early Christianity and early Islam.

Ten years ago, every political and military conflict in the world, from Central America to the Middle East, turned on the axis of communism vs. anti-communism.

Even fascism became popular in Europe, and is still a force to be reckoned with in Latin America, largely because of its opposition to “the specter of communism,” as Marx calls it in the first sentence of his “Communist Manifesto.”

The “Manifesto” was one of the key moments in history. Published in 1848, “the year of revolutions’ throughout Europe, it is, like the Bible, essentially a philosophy of history, past and future. All past history is reduced to class struggle between oppressor and oppressed, master and slave, whether king vs. people, priest vs. parishioner, guild- master vs. apprentice, or even husband vs. wife and parent vs. child.

This is a view of history even more cynical than Machiavelli’s. Love is totally denied or ignored; competition and exploitation are the universal rule.

Now, however, this can change, according to Marx, because now, for the first time in history, we have not many classes but only two — the bourgeoisie (the “haves,” owners of the means of production) and the proletariat (the “have-nots,” non-owners of the means of production).

The latter must sell themselves and their labor to the owners until the communist revolution, which will “eliminate” (euphemism for “murder”) the bourgeoisie and thus abolish classes and class conflict forever, establishing a millennium of peace and equality. After being utterly cynical about the past, Marx becomes utterly naive about the future.

What made Marx what he was? What are the sources of this creed?

Marx deliberately turned 180 degrees around from the (1) supernaturalism and (2) distinctiveness of his Jewish heritage to embrace (1) atheism and (2) communism. Yet Marxism retains all the major structural and emotional factors of biblical religion in a secularized form. Marx, like Moses, is the prophet who leads the new Chosen People, the proletariat, out of the slavery of capitalism into the Promised Land of communism across the Red Sea of bloody worldwide revolution and through the wilderness of temporary, dedicated suffering for the party, the new priesthood.

The revolution is the new “Day of Yahweh,” the Day of Judgment; party spokesmen are the new prophets; and political purges within the party to maintain ideological purity are the new divine judgments on the waywardness of the Chosen and their leaders. The messianic tone of communism makes it structurally and emotionally more like a religion than any other political system except fascism.

Just as Marx took over the forms and the spirit of his religious heritage, but not the content, he did the same with his Hegelian philosophical heritage, transforming Hegel’s philosophy of “dialectical idealism” into “dialectical materialism!” “Marx stood Hegel on his head,” the saying goes. Marx inherited seven radical ideas from Hegel:

Monism: the idea that everything is one and that common sense’s distinction between matter and spirit is illusory. For Hegel, matter was only a form of spirit; for Marx, spirit was only a form of matter.

Pantheism: the notion that the distinction between Creator and creature, the distinctively Jewish idea, is false. For Hegel, the world is made into an aspect of God (Hegel was a pantheist); for Marx, God is reduced to the world (Marx was an atheist).

Historicism: the idea that everything changes, even truth; that there is nothing above history to judge it; and that therefore what is true in one era becomes false in another, or vice versa. In other words, Time is God.

Dialectic: the idea that history moves only by conflicts between opposing forces, a “thesis” vs. an “antithesis” evolving a “higher synthesis.” This applies to classes, nations, institutions and ideas. The dialectic waltz plays on in history’s ballroom until the kingdom of God finally comes — which Hegel virtually identified with the Prussian state. Marx internationalized it to the worldwide communist state.

Necessitarianism, or fatalism: the idea that the dialectic and its outcome are inevitable and necessary, not free. Marxism is a sort of Calvinistic predestination without a divine Predestinator.

Statism: the idea that since there is no eternal, trans-historical truth or law, the state is supreme and uncriticizable. Marx again internationalized Hegel’s nationalism here. Militarism: the idea that since there is no universal natural or eternal law above states to judge and resolve differences between them, war is inevitable and necessary as long as there are states.

Like many other anti-religious thinkers since the French Revolution, Marx adopted the secularism, atheism and humanism of l8th century “Enlightenment,” along with its rationalism and its faith in science as potentially omniscient and technology as potentially omnipotent. Here again the forms, feel and function of biblical religion are transferred to another god and another faith. For rationalism is a faith, not a proof. The faith that human reason can know everything that is real cannot be proved by human reason; and the belief that everything that is real can be proved by the scientific method cannot itself be proved by the scientific method.

A third influence, on Marx, in addition to Hegelianism and Enlightenment rationalism, was economic reductionism: the reduction of all issues to economic issues. If Marx were reading this analysis now, he would say that the real cause of these ideas of mine was not my mind’s power to know the truth, but the capitalistic economic structures of the society that “produced” me. Marx believed that within man thought was totally determined by matter; that man was totally determined by society; and that society was totally determined by economics. This stands on its head the traditional view that mind rules body, man rules his societies, and society rules its economics.

Finally, Marx adopted the idea of the collective ownership of property and the means of producing it from previous “utopian socialist” thinkers. Marx says, “The theory of communism may be summed up in the single phrase: abolition of private property.” In fact, the only societies in history that have ever successfully practiced communism are monasteries, kibbutzes, tribes and families (which Marx also wanted to abolish). All communist governments (such as that of the U.S.S.R.) have transferred ownership to the state, not to the people. Marx’s faith that the state would “wither away” of its own accord once it had eliminated capitalism and put communism in its place has proved to be astonishingly naive. Once power is seized, only wisdom and sanctity relinquish it.

The deepest appeal of communism, especially in Third World countries, has been not the will to communalism but “the will to power,” as Nietzsche called it. Nietzsche saw more deeply into the heart of communism than Marx did.

How does Marx deal with the obvious objections to communism: that it abolishes privacy and private property, individuality, freedom, motivation to work, education, marriage, family, culture, nations, religion and philosophy? He does not deny that communism abolishes these things, but says that capitalism has already done so. For example, he argues that “the bourgeois sees in his wife a mere instrument of production.” On the most sensitive and important issues, family and religion, he offers rhetoric rather than logic; for example: “The bourgeois clap-trap about the family and education, about the hallowed correlation between parent and child, becomes all the more disgusting….” And here is his “answer” to religious and philosophical objections: “The charges against communism made from a religious, a philosophical and, generally, from an ideological standpoint are not deserving of serious examination.”

The simplest refutation of Marxism is that its materialism simply contradicts itself. If ideas are nothing but products of material and economic forces, like cars or shoes, then communist ideas are only that too. If all our ideas are determined not by insight into truth but by the necessary movements of matter if we just can’t help the way our tongues happen to wag — then the thoughts of Marx are no more true than the thoughts of Moses. To attack the grounds of thought is to attack one’s own attack.

But Marx sees this, and admits it. He reinterprets words as weapons, not as truths. The functions of the words of the “Manifesto” (and, ultimately, even of the much longer, more pseudo-scientific “Capital”) is not to prove what is true but to encourage the revolution. “Philosophers have only interpreted the world; the thing to do is to change it.” Marx is basically a pragmatist.

But even on this pragmatic level there is a self-contradiction. The “Manifesto” ends with this famous appeal: “The communists disdain to conceal their views and aims. They openly declare that their ends can be attained only by the forcible overthrow of all existing social conditions. Let the ruling classes tremble at a communistic revolution. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. Working men of all countries, unite!” But this appeal is self defeating, for Marx denies free will. Everything is fated; the revolution is “inevitable” whether I choose to join it or not. You cannot appeal to free choice and at the same time deny it.

There are strong practical objections to communism as well as these two philosophical objections. For one thing, its predictions simply have not worked. The revolution did not happen when and where Marxism predicted. Capitalism did not disappear, nor did the state, the family or religion. And communism has not produced contentment and equality anywhere it has gained power.

All Marx has been able to do is to play Moses and lead fools backward into the slavery of Egypt (worldliness). The real Liberator is waiting in the wings for the jester who now “struts and frets his hour upon the stage” to lead his fellow “fools to dusty death” the one topic Marxist philosophers refuse to face.


ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

Kreeft, Peter. “The Pillars of Unbelief — Marx” The National Catholic Register, (January – February 1988).

To subscribe to The National Catholic Register call 1-800-421-3230.

THE AUTHOR

Peter Kreeft, Ph.D., is a professor of philosophy at Boston College. He is an alumnus of Calvin College (AB 1959) and Fordham University (MA 1961, Ph.D., 1965). He taught at Villanova University from 1962-1965, and has been at Boston College since 1965.

The Pillars of Unbelief: Six modern thinkers who’ve harmed the Christian mind — Part II: Friedrich Nietzsche (1844 – 1900)

SOURCE: (2) The Pillars of Unbelief – Nietzsche

By Dr Peter Kreeft

Friedrich Nietzsche called himself “the Anti-Christ,” and wrote a book by that title. He argued for atheism as follows: “I will now disprove the existence of all gods. If there were gods, how could I bear not to be a god? Consequently, there are no gods.”

He scorned reason as well as faith, often deliberately contradicted himself, said that “a sneer is infinitely more noble that a syllogism” and appealed to passion, rhetoric and even deliberate hatred rather than reason.

He saw love as “the greatest danger” and morality as mankind’s worst weakness. He died insane, in an asylum, of syphilis — signing his last letters “the Crucified One.” He was adored by the Nazis as their semi-official philosopher.

Yet he is admired as profound and wise by many of the greatest minds of our century. How can this be?

There are three schools of thought about Nietzsche. Most popular among academics is the school of the “gentle Nietzscheans,” who claim that Nietzsche was, in effect, a sheep in wolf’s clothing; that his attacks should not be taken literally and that he was really an ally, not an enemy, of the Western institutions and values which he denounced.

These scholars resemble theologians who interpret sayings of Jesus like: “no one can come to the Father but through me” as meaning “all religions are equally valid,” and “he who marries a divorced woman commits adultery” as meaning “let your divorces be creative and reasonable.”

Second, there are the “awful, awful” Nietzscheans. They at least pay Nietzsche the compliment of taking him seriously. They are typified by the footnote in an old Catholic textbook on modern philosophy, which said only that Nietzsche existed, was an atheist and died insane — a fate which may well await anyone who looks too long into his books.

A third school of thought sees Nietzsche as a wolf indeed and not a sheep, but as a very important thinker because he shows to modern Western civilization its own dark heart and future. It’s easy to scapegoat and point fingers at “blacksheep” like Nietzsche and Hitler, but is there not a “Hitler in ourselves” (to quote Max Picard’s title)? Did not Nietzsche let the cat out of the bag? The demonic cat that was hidden in the respectable bag of secular humanism? Once “God is dead,” so is man, morality, love, freedom, hope, democracy, the soul and ultimately, sanity. No one shows this more vividly than Nietzsche. He may have been responsible (quite unintentionally) for many conversions.

Nietzsche’s main themes can be summarized by the titles of his main books. Each is, in a different way, an attack on faith. The center of Nietzsche’s philosophy is always the same: He is as centered on Christ as Augustine was, only he centered on Christ as his enemy.

Nietzsche’s first book, The Birth of Tragedy from the Spirit of Music, single-handedly revolutionized the accepted view of the ancient Greeks as all “sweetness and light,” reason and order. For Nietzsche, the tragic poets were the great Greeks, and the philosophers, starting with Socrates, were the small ones, pale and passionless. All the Western world had followed Socrates and his rationalism and moralism, and had denied the other, darker side of man, the tragic side.

Nietzsche instead exalted tragedy, chaos, disorder and irrationality, symbolized by the god Dionysus, god of growth and drunken orgies. He claimed that Socrates had turned the world instead to the worship of Apollo, god of the sun, light, order and reason. But the fate of Nietzsche’s god Dionysus was soon to overtake Nietzsche himself; as Dionysus was literally torn apart by the Titans, supernatural monsters of the underworld, Nietzsche’s mind was to be cracked asunder by his own inner Titans.

The Use and Abuse of Histor” continued the Dionysian-vs.-Apollonian theme. The “abuse of history” is (according to Nietzsche) theory, science, objective truth. The right use of history is to enhance “life.” Life and truth, fire and light, Dionysus and Apollo, will and intellect, are set in opposition. We see Nietzsche being torn apart here, for these are the two parts of the self.

Ecce Homo was pseudo-autobiographical shameless egotism. Though he was only a stretcher-bearer in the war, Nietzsche calls himself a “swaggering old artillery man” adored by all the ladies. In fact, he was a lonely old man who could not stand the sight of blood, an emotional dwarf prancing like Napoleon. What’s most terrifying is that he willingly embraces his falsehood and fantasy. It is consistent with his philosophy or preferring “whatever is life-enhancing” to truth. “Why not live a lie? He asks.

The Genealogy of Morals claimed that morality was an invention of the weak (especially the Jews, and then the Christians) to weaken the strong. The sheep convinced the wolf to act like a sheep. This is unnatural, argues Nietzsche, and seeing morality’s unnatural origin in resentment at inferiority will free us from its power over us.

Beyond Good and Evil is Nietzsche’s alternative morality, or “new morality.” “Master morality” is totally different from “slave morality,” he says. Whatever a master commands becomes good from the mere fact that the master commands it. The weak sheep have a morality of obedience and conformity. Masters have a natural right to do whatever they please, for since there is no God, everything is permissible.

The Twilight of the Idols explores the consequences of “the death of God.” (Of course God never really lives, but faith in Him did. Now that is dead, says Nietzsche.) With God dies all objective truths (for there is no mind over ours) and objective values, laws and morality (for there is no will over ours). Soul, free will, immortality, reason, order, love — all these are “idols,” little gods that are dying now that the Big God has died.

What will replace God? The same being who will replace man; the Superman. Nietzsche’s masterpiece, Thus Spake Zarathustra, celebrates this new god.

Nietzsche called Zarathustra the new Bible, and told the world to “throw away all other books; you have myZarathustra. It is intoxicating rhetoric, and it has captivated adolescents for generations. It was written in only a few days, in a frenzy, perhaps of literally demon-inspired “automatic writing.” No book ever written contains more Jungian archetypes, like a fireworks display of images from the unconscious.

Its essential message is the condemnation of present-day man as a weakling and the announcement of the next species, the Superman, who lives by “master morality” instead of “slave morality.” God is dead, long live the new god!

We can thank Satan’s own foolishness in “blowing his cover” in this man. Like Nazism, Nietzsche may scare the hell out of us and help save our civilization or even our souls by turning us away in terror before it’s too late.

But in The Eternal Return Nietzsche discovers that all gods die, even the Superman. He believed that all history necessarily moved in a cycle, endlessly repeating all past events — “There is nothing new under the Sun.” Nietzsche deduced this disappearing conclusion from the two premises of (1) a finite amount of matter and (2) an infinite amount of time (since there is no creator and no creation); thus every possible combination of elementary particles, every possible world, occur an infinite number of times, given infinite time. All, even the Superman, will return again to dust, and evolve worms, apes, man and Superman again and again.

Instead of despairing, as Ecclesiastes did, at this hopeless new history, Nietzsche seized the opportunity to celebrate history’s irrationality and the triumph of “life” over logic. The supreme virtue was the will’s courage to affirm this meaningless life, beyond reason, for no reason.

But in Nietzsche’s last work, The Will to Power, the lack of an end or goal appears as demonic, and mirrors the demonic character of the modern mind. Without a God, a heaven, truth, or an absolute Goodness to aim at, the meaning of life becomes simply “the will to power.” Power becomes its own end, not a means. Life is like a bubble, empty within and without; but its meaning is self-affirmation, egotism, blowing up your bubble, expanding the meaningless self into the meaningless void. “Just will,” is Nietzsche’s advice. It does not matter what you will or why.

We are now in a position to see why Nietzsche is such a crucially important thinker, not despite but because of his insanity. No one in history, except possibly the Marquis de Sade, has ever so clearly, candidly and consistently formulated the complete alternative to Christianity.

Pre-Christian (i.e., pagan) societies and philosophies were like virgins. Post-Christian (i.e., modern) societies and philosophies are like divorcees. Nietzsche is no pagan pre-Christian, but the essential, modern post-Christian and anti-Christian. He rightly saw Christ as his chief enemy and rival. The spirit of Anti-Christ has never received such complete formulation. Nietzsche was not only the favorite philosopher of Nazi Germany, he is the favorite philosopher of hell.

We can thank Satan’s own foolishness in “blowing his cover” in this man. Like Nazism, Nietzsche may scare the hell out of us and help save our civilization or even our souls by turning us away in terror before it’s too late.


ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

Kreeft, Peter. “The Pillars of Unbelief — Nietzsche” The National Catholic Register, (January – February 1988).

To subscribe to The National Catholic Register call 1-800-421-3230.