I typically do not post in response to other posts or articles I find around the web, but today I’ll make an exception. I found this post entitled, “Masculine Pastors: The Battle They Face and Will Face Even More” over at What is Truth, a blog operated by an Independent Baptist pastor named Kent Brandenburg. My purpose isn’t to critically assess the post, mainly because I find myself in nearly complete agreement with it. Rather, I’d like to point the reader to it (RTWT) and use it as a jumping off point for some discussion of how men in our modern world can be “real men.” As such, even if the reader is not an Independent Baptist or a pastor, my hope is that both the original post and mine below will be useful.
It’s obvious to any reasonable observer that the Western world is undergoing a crisis of masculinity. Much of this is due to the constant assaults upon manhood made by feminism, especially once feminism (as part of the larger progressive Left constellation of interest groups) gained institutional acceptability and found itself in possession of managerial power (i.e. it became part of the “establishment”). Masculinity, as it has traditionally been accepted and expressed, is becoming more and more socially unacceptable, in large part due to the Cathedral’s use of the media to bring it into disrepute. This has been coupled with a legal regimen surrounding marriage, the domestic abuse industry, and divorce which assumes guilt on the part of men and generally tends to exonerate women, no matter how badly they may act. Buttressing this is a public education system that uses a largely female body of teachers to discourage “boys from being boys” through a combination of indoctrination and medication.
This is not the only area of society encouraging effeminacy. Pop culture as a whole (e.g. rock music) has encouraged men to look and act like women and to adopt an unhealthy and ungodly definition of “love.” As Western societies have become more urban and metrosexual, popular culture has channeled men in this direction. The Baptist preacher in The Waltons described by Pastor Brandenburg is an early example of this trend, a trend which reflected the increased “taming” of men that soft and effeminate modern urban life began to uphold as the ideal. Indeed, the so-called Rural Purge that occurred in American television between 1969-1975, in which a number of still-popular rural and western-themed shows were cancelled and replaced by shows dealing with “urban life,” helped to cement this direction in popular culture. Television moved away from programming that upheld traditional masculine ideals of toughness, responsibility, decisiveness, and honour (such as in many westerns) or which more generally tended to uphold and valourise country living (which, again, is disposed toward emphasising masculine traits of hard work and self-reliance) as “cleaner” and “better” than urbanity.
I’ve written previously about the fact of (and necessity for) social hierarchies among human populations. It is very apparent that human society naturally divides into hierarchical levels with progressively ascending castes (I prefer this term to “class,” which carries with it too much modernistic and economic baggage for my taste). Because of this universality, I believe it is a sound argument to say that these caste divisions are even divinely ordained. Indeed, the very term “hierarchy” presupposes this, meaning essentially “the rank of sacred things.”
I find the model of the three castes to be a useful conceptual tool for explaining and understand overall social hierarchies and divisions within human societies. I would in general follow Evola’s approach to caste division, though not in every sense. The term, of course, hearkens back to the well-known Hindu caste system which gradually developed after the invasion of Indo-Aryans into northern India around 1400 BC, and which is itself likely the crystallization of a less intricate and rigid system that (generally speaking) was commonly found among early Indo-Europeans and their steppe neighbors.
The first caste is made up of the brahmana (priestly caste) and the kshatriya (warrior and administrative caste). For most purposes, I tend to conjoin these two elements into a single “aristocratic” caste, of which they represent two aspects. The second caste is the vaisya, typically made up of the merchants, artisans, tradesmen, farmers, and so forth. Along with the brahmana and kshatriya, these were collectively known as the arya, who were also of the invading Indo-Aryan stock. However, they were the “little men” among the invaders and were not considered “noble” like the higher caste. The third and lowest caste is that of the sudra, made up of the very poor and generally unfree, the common laborers and so forth.
Anyone who follows the national dialogue surrounding immigration issues in the USA, especially as it relates to illegal immigration, is sure to have encountered the so-called “biblical” arguments advanced by theological liberals for unlimited, unhindered immigration. One of the stock-in-trades of the pro-amnesty, anti-borders, pro-globalism side of the argument is to put some left-wing religious figure before a microphone and have them repeat out-of-context biblical citations, mostly drawn from the Pentateuch (which is generally the only portion of the Bible with which their Jewish handlers are familiar). These verses typically include,
“Thou shalt neither vex a stranger, nor oppress him: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.” (Exodus 22:21)
“Also thou shalt not oppress a stranger: for ye know the heart of a stranger, seeing ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.” (Exodus 23:9)
“And if a stranger sojourn with thee in your land, ye shall not vex him. But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.” (Leviticus 19:33-34)
“And if thy brother be waxen poor, and fallen in decay with thee; then thou shalt relieve him: yea, though he be a stranger, or a sojourner; that he may live with thee.” (Leviticus 25:35)
“Love ye therefore the stranger: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.” (Deuteronomy 10:19)
One must admit that it seems a bit odd to see theological leftists, who at no other time would believe what the Bible says or take its words at face value, suddenly morph into textual literalists on this one, specific issue.
If your average Westerner was asked to state what best defined the modern world, there is a strong likelihood he or she would give an answer relating to individualism. This is because individualism is one of the defining characteristics of modernism as it has been expressed both in the West and in other eras where similar late stage degeneracies in societies have taken place. The role of the individual has been exalted to an excessive degree in the modern West such that there is basically no sense of community, united purpose, or public spiritedness in our countries any more.
Many on the “soft Left” of classical liberalism and libertarianism (for these cannot properly be called “conservative” or “Rightist”) would see absolutely no problem with this. These ideologies perpetuate, and indeed claim to thrive upon, the mythology of the “rugged individual” who pulls himself up by his own bootstraps through his own hard work and abilities. These are the folks who assume that anything which challenges this proposition in the least way must be “communist” or “collectivist.” They fail to grasp that civilisation itself is “collectivist” by this definition. No “rugged individualist” who has ever lived has succeeded outside of the framework of a community and society which allowed him to operate under the protections of various laws and/or customs that maintain order within their social system. This fact is as true for the West as it is for any other civilisation that has ever existed. The West is not – and never could be – special in that regard, despite the constant drumbeat about “American exceptionalism” and its European counterparts. Westerners are as subject to the laws of nature and human nature as anyone else.
Throughout the Western world, immigration (whether legal or illegal, and often approximating invasion more than true migration) is perhaps the single biggest issue facing both the people and the politicians. The Western world is finding itself facing an unprecedented mass influx of entrants from other, non-western parts of the world. While the history of the West has certainly involved mass movements of people at various times, these have always been understood to constitute either invasions or colonisations. The idea of millions of outsiders moving into a culture and it being considered “immigration” is a vastly new (and dangerous) concept in the West.
Nevertheless, there are many in our society who seem to be perfectly fine with the idea of mass immigration radically altering the cultural, religious, and genetic bases of Western societies. Indeed, the acceptability, or lack thereof, of mass immigration is one of the major points of division between so-called civic nationalists on one side and ethnonationalists (speaking generally) and especially white nationalists on the other. Civic nationalists, who are often really just straight up open borders supporters, believe that membership in a new society can be established as easily as simply taking an oath and signing some paperwork. “You can be a polygamist totem worshiper who believes albinos should be harvested for the magical elixirs in their livers and still be a good American,” and all that.
The common assumption, at least among the coastal élites, is that openness to immigration is correlated with democratic sensibilities in particular, drawing from a more generalised standard of egalitarianism. Because these élites rarely interact in any meaningful way with the immigrants who comprise the “mass” in mass immigration, they tend to assume the fungibility of the “lower classes.” This is why the political arm of the Cathedral sees immigrants as a source of political capital – one voter is as good as another, and if a new set of voters can be imported who will vote the way the Cathedral wants versus recalcitrant natives who insist upon voting for their own interests, then all the better. It wouldn’t be the first time in recent history that this has happened. The corporate arm of the Cathedral sees immigrants in much the same way – as replacement labourers for natives who are too expensive and have a fractious insistence upon earning a fair wage.
However, increasing democratisation and equality have not noticeably served to make either the masses or their “ethno-elites” more favourably disposed to mass immigration. Indeed, the opposite is widely occurring, as can be seen daily around us.
Anyone who has been following the recent cultural movement by SJWs and People of Colour™ to undermine the last vestiges of traditional Western civilisation in both Europe and in the Anglosphere has seen the attempt to discredit our remaining institutions by declaring them “white supremacist.” Building upon their efforts to use Charlottesville, Richard Spencer, and “Neo Nazis” as a foil, practically everything related to the history, institutions, traditions, religion, and heroic mythology in the USA and other Western nations has now been morally reprobated by our modern day Puritans on the radical Left. America’s police and criminal justice system is white supremacist since blacks and browns find themselves disproportionately caught up in its clutches. America’s educational system is white supremacist for not granting Harriet Tubman equal time with Thomas Jefferson. Christopher Columbus has been relegated to the status of mass murderer and genocidal Nazi for merely discovering the American continents. Figures and institutions in European nations are similarly condemned. Even such abstractions as logic and reason are openly ridiculed and condemned as white supremacist by anti-white PoCs spearheading the cultural marxist movement to destroy Western civilisation.
On many levels, one cannot blame the white nationalists for reacting as they do. When someone is – literally – trying to destroy your culture and civilisation and people, it is natural to want to fight back and to expel the intruders, especially when the intruders have a much greater tendency to be socially dyscivic criminals, rapists, welfare mooches, and general troublemakers.
As much as it pains me to agree in any way with the SJWs, however, they are correct in their bare assertions about the white supremacist nature of our institutions. It is in their reaction to this, in their efforts to undermine and overthrow these institutions, that they are grossly negligent and worthy of our condemnation. Allow me to explain what I mean.
For the past month, Americans have been treated to the spectacle of rampant iconoclasm occurring nationwide, the result of a concerted effort by progressives to undermine and erase America’s “racist” past. It began with the assaults on the South’s Confederate heritage. Statues of southern generals were targeted for removal, toppling, or complete demolition. Some more ambitious souls have even floated the idea of dynamiting the monument at Stone Mountain, in Georgia, an altogether more difficult proposition than merely pulling down a statue of Robert E. Lee.
As predicted, the iconoclasm did not remain confined to the destruction of Confederate history. The process has since moved on to encompass practically every visible and tangible aspect of American history. We have seen the vandalism of monuments to as widely diverse a group as the Founding Fathers, Union generals, former Philadelphia mayor Frank Rizzo, Christopher Columbus, St. Junipero Serra, and even (in an ironic twist) the Great Emancipator himself. Additionally, movements are afoot all across the country to rename schools and other public buildings which are named after anyone who was, essentially, a white male. This follows the recent academic trend of replacing Shakespeare and other historical giants in university curricula (as well as in literal monuments) with pygmyish “people of colour” who were much less capable, but much more ideologically acceptable to the radical Left.
Many observers have compared the recent iconoclasm to those of various Islamic terrorist groups such as ISIS and the Taliban, who have made a habit out of destroying millennia-old cultural artifacts in the areas they control. Despite the obvious ideological incompatibilities between the two, this comparison does have merit on a deeper level. The existence of the “Red-Green” alliance between radical Muslims and radical progressives should not be as surprising as many might initially think. It is an alliance of convenience between two groups who are equally committed to the destruction of traditional Christian, white, Western civilisation and its replacement with something else.
It can safely be said that everyone in neoreaction and related circles laments the rise of modernism and the concurrent fall of traditionalism. Indeed, this is one of the primary reasons why reactionary movements in general even exist. However, what exactly is meant by “tradition”? When did this “tradition” exist? Was it Victorianism? What about the sort of traditional Catholicism found in the Middle Ages? What of 1st century Christianity? Ancient Rome? The Bronze Age steppes? Evolian esoteric history? What about outside of a Western context? Don’t other civilizational groups have their traditionalisms as well, and aren’t these just as valid forms of “tradition” as our own?
The answer to all of these questions is yes, each to varying degrees.
It is helpful to think of tradition from an energy state perspective. Thought of this way, we can recognize traditionalism as a low-energy state, one which is characterized by high levels of social stability and order, which are able to “sink” social energy, preventing it from overflowing into destructive channels. Conversely, modernism is correctly described as a high-energy state system demonstrating instability and perturbed order.
Thus, I believe a very useful conceptual model to use to visualize tradition versus modernism is to map them out onto an abstracted three-dimensional space in which the z-axis is social energy, while the x– and y-axes are arbitrarily chosen and represent a blended mixture of civilizational “variables” relating to specific aspects of culture, as well as fundamental, underlying traits which define and direct how that culture manifests itself. This 3D space will contain both valleys (low energy regions representing various types of traditional societies) and neighboring peaks (high energy regions representing various sorts of modernist transitional states between traditional schema. Movement between any two points in this space will necessarily entail a change in z-axis height, increases or decreases in social energy representing movement toward or away from local “tradition minima.”
Previously on this site, I’ve discussed the phenomenon of ethnogenesis, which is the process (or rather, processes) by which ethnic groups are formed. As a regular reader of the Times might have picked up, ethnicity and ethnogenesis are subjects which interest me greatly, and which I consequently think and read about a good deal. Recently, I’ve been reading the proceedings from a series of papers submitted to a colloquium organised by the Centre for Hellenic Studies at Harvard. These papers all deal with various aspects of ethnicity as it related to the archaic, classical, and Hellenistic Greeks. One of the issues that has most interested me is that of colonisation (of which the Greeks did quite a lot) and how separation from the metropolis and interaction with “barbarians” affected the ethnicity of the colonials, both as to how they view themselves and how they were viewed by other Greeks. It strikes me that we can look to certain of the situations in Greek colonialism and draw some conclusions about situations in more recent history, and even those occurring today.
Basically, the three types of situations are these: 1) When a people plant large and populous colonies into a relatively uncivilised location, or at least those in which the indigenous peoples are technologically backwards and unable to effectively resist; 2) when a people colonise an already well-populated region with inhabitants who have attained a high level of civilisation, but remain aloof, and 3) when a people colonise the same, but attempt an integration of the indigenous population.
One of the unfortunate truths of the modern West is that 90% of everything has been subverted by cultural marxism, including practically every major religious organisation. This has long been obvious in overtly liberal denominations such as those within the World Council of Churches (WCC). Sadly, this has become more and more apparent even in so-called “conservative” denominations such as the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), which despite its reputation for conservatism, has (at least at a leadership level) been a hotbed of cultural marxism for over two decades. This is made all the more apparent by this proposed resolution to be submitted at the Southern Baptist Convention’s 2017 annual meeting (SBC17) and which will almost assuredly be passed by the assembled delegates out of some misguided sense of “justice.” The resolution calls on the SBC to condemn the alt-Right and nationalism in general, vomiting out the same laundry list of mean, scary “isms” that you’d find in any crudely drafted anarchist Antifa manifesto somewhere in the lower rent districts of the internet.
Full disclosure: I am a Baptist, but I am not a Southern Baptist. Instead, I am an Independent, Fundamental Baptist. So – in theory – I shouldn’t have standing to complain about this. However, many of the associations I am involved in contain religiously diverse memberships – Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, pagans, agnostics, and more – who do not generally tend to see the finer distinctions between various types of Baptists. As a result, when the Southern Baptist Convention acts on a set of godless, globalist impulses such as are represented in the resolution in question, it tends to tar other Baptists with its unbiblical and satanic brush.
I will make a detailed presentation of the biblical case for nationalism below – though I shouldn’t need to since it’s one that most Christians of every denomination understood during the previous nineteen and a half centuries of the existence of Christ’s churches. Christianity contains within its doctrines a “weak universalistic” message pertaining to the universality of Christ’s atoning sacrifice for sinful man and for the capacity for human beings of all races and nations to place their faith and trust in God the Father through the Lord Jesus Christ unto salvation. However, it is an unbiblical and illogical leap to pass from that to the sort of “strong universalistic” globalist, socially and nationally equalitarian message which modern liberalism implicitly assumes. In other words, while it is a genuinely Christian message to say that Christ’s blood can be applied to any sinner of any group, it is NOT a genuinely Christian message to take that basic truth and twist it to claim that it means that national borders should be erased, that racial and national distinctions should be disregarded, and so forth. The latter is not at all implied by the former. Yet, this is the message which is adopted by even so-called conservatives when they criticise nationalism as they seek to ingratiate themselves with a godless world that increases more and more in its rebellion against every standard and ordinance of God which He has established for the governance of this world. This is what SBC17 would be doing if it adopted this resolution.