Sunday, June 28, 2015

How to Survive the New Dark Ages

A longtime reader has asked me for advice on how to cope with the new Dark Age we are living through. I am sure he speaks for dozens when he describes the president as "that shameless, lying con-man" who "goes on about how 'love wins' when in 2008 he claimed that same love to be a bit more restricted."

Actually, he claimed that as recently as three years ago. And it is not so much love that won, but greed, being that millions of dollars from Hollywood bundlers was at stake. Money talks, sodomy walks.

But the following plea pierces the Gagdad heart:

"Since I last wrote to you I have been through a lot of twists and turns came back to God, to Christianity. I've had moments where I thought my heart would float out of my chest; I can't get enough. But so much hate has come to the surface in the last two days that I think I may as well throw in the towel in regards to friendship with God. He tells me to love my enemies when in fact I HATE them, lying sacks of shit they are. I feel I have no way I can call myself a Christian with this in my heart, and the ease in which it bubbles up" (italics mine).

It is the italicized part that most troubles me. Who ever said we are not supposed to hate evil? To the contrary, God hates evil, and wishes for us to burn it from our midst. It's just that it costs nothing to be polite while doing so. When Reagan told Gorbachev to tear down this fucking wall, did he sound angry to you? No, of course not. Resolute, maybe. Unambiguous. But he was just transmitting the gift of truth, which must occasionally be delivered at the end of a hammer. That's not hate, even if it leaves a few lumps.

The key, I think, is that you have to learn to be dispassionate about it, or else you run the risk of living like the perpetually self-righteous leftist who actually enjoys being sunk in his hatreds. This is why they can never be satisfied, and why victory only causes them to be more frenzied, since you can never get enough of what you don't really need.

A leftist can always find a way to be be miserable, if only because that is what envy does. Envy is one of the two or three keys to unhappiness. Ingratitude would be another. And let's not forget hope for the world (or, God forbid, hope for man, of all things!).

Conversely, a Christian can always find an excuse to be joyous. Remember the martyrs? Besides, You will be persecuted for my sake. That's just the terrestrial cost of doing isness with God. Be prepared for more, since this is not about love for homosexuals but hatred of the divine order, AKA reality.

On the positive side, light shines all the more brightly in the dark.

To help this reader and perhaps help ourselves, I would like to throw this subject out to the wider coonosphere: how are you dealing with the madness? What's your secret, you unreasonably happy bastards?


Anonymous Skorpion said...

I always think of Robinson Jeffers' poem, "Be Angry at the Sun", when I think the world is going to hell:

That public men publish falsehoods
Is nothing new. That America must accept
Like the historical republics corruption and empire
Has been known for years.

Be angry at the sun for setting
If these things anger you. Watch the wheel slope and turn,
They are all bound on the wheel, these people, those warriors.
This republic, Europe, Asia.

Observe them gesticulating,
Observe them going down. The gang serves lies, the passionate
Man plays his part; the cold passion for truth
Hunts in no pack.

You are not Catullus, you know,
To lampoon these crude sketches of Caesar. You are far
From Dante's feet, but even farther from his dirty
Political hatreds.

Let boys want pleasure, and men
Struggle for power, and women perhaps for fame,
And the servile to serve a Leader and the dupes to be duped.
Yours is not theirs.

6/28/2015 11:29:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The good news is they don't have to march in the St. Patrick Day parades anymore.

6/28/2015 01:58:00 PM  
Blogger ted said...

I still feel it's a hate the sin, but not the sinner thing. It's been interesting for me because I am embedded in the left worldview geographically, so I tend to keep to myself about these matters. I care less about politics and care more about God, and that seems to keep some (vertical) hope alive.

6/28/2015 03:03:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Churchill said he never hated anyone but Hitler, and that even that was just professional.

6/28/2015 03:11:00 PM  
Blogger Kurt said...

How to survive these dark times? Nothing new - prayer and meditation, reading the Bible, pursuing purity, gathering in community with people of faith. Just get as much God as you can possibly grow into your life: "I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing." John 15:5

6/28/2015 05:28:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

To the unknown friend who wrote - and anyone else, for that matter - I would heartily recommend a little book I just finished re-reading after many years, Beginning to Pray by Anthony Bloom. It is short, sweet, and should be a simple meditative read for any Raccoon.

Towards the end, in a lovely reminder about speaking to God as you would to a person, with the understanding that you are, in fact, speaking to a person who has a name or three, comes this seemingly relevant passage:

"If in the process of discovering where you stand in relation to God - how far you are an outsider - you come to the point of knocking, of going deeper and deeper into yourself, turning your prayer on yourself, bringing yourself to the point where there is a door to knock on, the point where it can be opened - there will come a moment when the door will open, but then you must have a name for God. You must be able to say a word that shows it is you who have been in search of Him, and not just an interchangeable human being in quest of an anonymous God.

In the process of searching you will have endured pain, anguish, hope, expectation - all the range of human emotions. God will have been the desired One and he will have been the frustrating One. He will have been the One you long for and the One you hate because He escapes you, the One you love beyond everything, without whom you cannot live, and whom you cannot forgive, because he does not respond, and many other things. And out of this search there will gradually emerge words which you can speak to God out of your own experience of the quest of the Grail, words which are your own. You may discover that they coincide with many words which others have used. Then they will cease to be anonymous words; they will be words which you have in common with other people but which have become truly yours."

To that I would only add, it is alright to take your time of prayer and use it to howl out every bad thing you are thinking and feeling - so long as you are crying out to God. Give him everything in your heart, no matter how awful. He can take it. Just as a good parent can take it when their beloved child screams and howls in rage and frustration, even or especially when it is justified from that child's perspective. Like any storm, eventually it will subside, and like any good parent, He will shepherd you through.

I will pray for you and yours; pray for me and mine, too.

6/28/2015 05:44:00 PM  
Blogger John said...

I am told Schuon said he hated communists.
That's damn near over half the world.

6/28/2015 05:47:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

At the very least there is clarity: who to support and who to oppose.

Andy Texan

6/28/2015 06:36:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

A little more (in the spirit of throwing it all out there and seeing if anything helps):

I have learned, again and again over the years, that no matter what happens in life I really can trust in God in a very personal sense. No matter how insane things may seem, something always works out, one way or another. I can either stay calm and ride out the storms, or panic and make things worse. I can't change what other people do, particularly out in the world where the decisions of strangers a thousand miles away may result in a drastic and potentially catastrophic change in my family's fortunes. But I can be certain that, one way or another, something will happen. What that something will be, I don't know, but He has answered every prayer in the past, in His way. No reason, then, not to trust in Him now.

As to the madness at large, I think again of parenting. One concept I find myself trying to teach my kids of late is that it is the parents' job to handle justice and punishment of the kids. Not theirs. I don't like tattling, and I don't want to hear them echoing my chastisements against their sibling. I am the parent, and I am handling it. There is no need for them to pile on. I try to keep that in mind when wondering what God plans to do about all this mess. He has assured us that vengeance is His. Do I trust Him?

6/28/2015 06:47:00 PM  
Blogger JWM said...

September 11 launched this two front war. Both islam and the left were galvanized by the event. Many, who would, for a while be known as the right were awakened to the war, but we (they) had no idea how to fight it. I was awakened by the attack of September 11. When I saw the plane hit the second tower, a 'voice' called it the Dark Epiphany, a moment when the face of Satan became visible for those who had eyes to see. My eyes were forced open, and every moonbat notion I ever had was burned away from me in that moment. Later I turned to the only person I knew who had the wisdom to make sense of what was happening. That was Dennis Prager. I bought a little radio so I would never miss his show. Prager led me to the internet, to LGF (remember?) to Babba Zee, and Gagdad Bob, and on to so many more. I can't say exactly how or when it happened, but I followed the wisdom here until I came to believe in Jesus Christ.
But 9/11 was followed by the wars, and the protests. I remember driving to my art gallery to shop sit when I found myself in the middle of a huge protest. I screamed at them. Called them names. The voice spoke again to me. it said, "This is alignment of sides." And the alignment continued until we reached this awful state of polarization.
I heard the voice once more in this manner a few years later, around the time GWB was leaving office. It spoke again, and said, "The alignment of sides is complete. What follows is the Great Inversion."
We are living in The Great Inversion.
Truth is no longer a value.
The last whisper I got from the voice said, "There will be a reckoning". And there will.
In the mean time, the left is triumphant, because they won, and we just fucking lost. America has been fundamentally transformed, just like Bruce Jenner. I fear Anne Barnhardt is right.
So what shall I do?
I have become a Christian, albeit feral. I will pray for the Lord to reign my emotions, shape my intentions, inspire my thoughts, temper my words, and guide my deeds. But I'm withdrawing from the war. My Mom passed away recently. My wife and I have no kids. I'm putting my effort into running with my outlaw bicycle gang, getting high with my friends, and creating as much good clean fun as I can. Our events are growing. People are coming to our group for a good time cruise, and they're leaving happy. This, as my Buddhist wife would say, creates Value. It adds a little joy to someone's life. It's the most worthwhile thing I can think of to do. So I avoid Drudge, skim the headlines at Ace, and move on. I can't keep up with it; I try to keep sane.



6/28/2015 07:25:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Beer helps.

6/28/2015 08:27:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Plus, knowing that the anti-liberty, anti-life wacktion will never win the war. All of their victories will crumble into dust no matter how hard they grasp at it.
Their utopia will only be a man-made hell. They will be unable to experience joy or peace. Indeed, as Bob says, they just keep getting enraged. Hell, they gotta make up stuff to feed their rage.

That may wake up some more folks as they begin to experience the joys of tyranny.
The tyrants may find that most people ain't so keen about rolling over and giving up.
Since us having joy pisses them off so much, I intend to be as joyful as I can be.

I reckon you could call it revenge joy. :)

6/28/2015 08:45:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

As to praying for your enemies, and for those who seem to be working as hard as they can to destroy everything you love:

I actually find it quite easy to pray for them these days. First, because quite frankly, God's blessing is both the best and worst thing I know of to inflict upon anyone, and I say that with a complete lack of hyperbole - for how can any of us bear to look upon ourselves and see the truth of what we are and what we have done in this life? And how much worse must it be to have such an awakening if one is, for instance, a Justice Roberts? I do not envy him his day of reckoning.

Second, I honestly pray for them to be blessed because who knows but God how much good an Obama could do, were he to have an awakening? What if, like Saul, the scales fell from his eyes and he were to use the rest of his time in office trying to right the wrongs he has done? Now to be clear, I do not expect any such thing to happen, but then again you could probably write a book about the things I never expected, but prayed for anyway, only to have them come true. In their own time, and not mine, but that doesn't make it any less true.

Yesterday, in church, I asked myself whether I would be able to maintain that generosity of spirit if, say, a gunman or group of terrorists stormed in and destroyed my church and my family. In truth, I don't know. But I hope that I would be able, like the members of the Emmanuel church, even in the midst of the greatest suffering in my life, to forgive and pray for the soul of my enemies. Where someone tried to start riots, they brought instead peace and prayer. I can't think of a better way to honor the dead.

Not saying there shouldn't be justice, by the way. Only that the kind of justice we so often long for - the satisfaction of God's crushing, eternal vengeance, as opposed to merely human justice, which ought to be as dispassionate as possible - is, in truth, not ours to demand. God knows, and God can handle it.

6/29/2015 05:11:00 AM  
Blogger mushroom said...

I went to church yesterday, and the pastor was on fire, but I don't think I heard much about what to do about the outside. Bob's right. Hating sin is a good thing. I hate it especially in my heart. I can tell you, from thirty-plus years of trying to follow Jesus, the Lord is not surprised that I still have problems. He says, "Stick to the truth. Pray." I'm the one who needs to change. God knows what He is doing.

I like the way Leonard Cohen puts it:

You say I took the Name in vain.
I don't even know the Name,
But if I did, well, really,
What's it to ya?
There's a blaze of light
In every word.
It doesn't matter
which you heard,
The holy
Or the broken

And I usually start crying here:

I did my best,
It wasn't much.
I couldn't feel,
So I tried to touch.
I've told the truth,
I didn't come to fool ya.
And even though
It all went wrong,
I'll stand before
The Lord of song
With nothing on my tongue
But 'Hallelujah!'

6/29/2015 06:27:00 AM  
Blogger William Wildblood said...

I think the best thing we can do is to realise that these are times when those who would hold fast to the truth are being tested right up to the hilt. Can you be true to yourself and your beliefs when your views are mocked, when sacrilege is celebrated as 'loving' and the outer world seeks to corrupt everything that is good and holy?

Paradoxically such a time is when we can best learn detachment from this world, never giving up on it or allowing ourselves to hate it but not identifying with it either. When the world is in ruins it is easier to put all one's faith in God. Today the devil is being given his head (you can take that metaphorically or literally but the fact is that there are powers of darkness) and I don't think we can win the battle against him outwardly, but we can proclaim the truth and give as many souls as possible the chance to escape his clutches.

What better example can we have for these times than that of the sufferings endured by Christ? The victory was eventually his and it will be ours too if we can display a faction of his love, patience and humility.

6/29/2015 06:33:00 AM  
Anonymous B Ambrose said...

Another excellent article! Thought about what Julie said: " church, I asked myself whether I would be able to maintain that generosity of spirit if, say, a gunman or group of terrorists stormed in and destroyed my church and my family. In truth, I don't know."

With what has been going on I always take my canister of Bear Spray to church with me. Here in Texas we are very well armed. I do not think God would want us to sit there, watch and let ourselves be slaughtered. Maybe we are to act as instruments of God.

We were created by God in his image, to have a human experience, we received the expression of God’s intent and vision for our new life, sight and hearing, thought and speech, intelligence and emotions, will and desire, personality and identity. We received a soul. Without our soul, we are a computer without software. It is possible that taking down evil when we are confronted with it may be what God intended for us. God does work in mysterious ways.

6/29/2015 06:34:00 AM  
Blogger William Wildblood said...

er, I mean a fraction of his love etc!

6/29/2015 06:36:00 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

I notice Christ didn't go on and on about things. Nor operate on imagination (even though He must have known completely the consequences of anyone's actions). I mean no insult here. And I agree with all dissenting opinion on the recent matters. But I am going to wait and see. And try and be calm and helpful and generous about what takes place in front of me. At 50 I am seeing when looking back that I worried so much about things that never happened. My hair is white from it.They were reasonable possibilities. But I spent so much mental energy on things that actually never happened. That's what I mean by imagination, and it can be brought unfairly to an actual confrontation with someone.
Christ simply said, forgive them Father, they know not what they do.
But it wasn't just what He said but what He believed and thought and felt in his heart while saying it. The mindset came first and the words came naturally from it.

6/29/2015 07:14:00 AM  
Blogger John Lien said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

6/29/2015 07:55:00 AM  
Blogger John Lien said...

I'm a simple man. I experience joy being surrounded by God's creation, growing things, building and repairing things in the shop. Watching the collapse of the West from the sidelines. I've given up thinking I can change anything.

So, my life is like a conglomerate rock. Chunks of great joy suspended in a matrix of sadness.

6/29/2015 08:18:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to say, the tears of wingnuts are delicious. Excuse me while I drink up. I feel a little bit guilty for gloating, but then I go look at the hate-filled diatribes that fill this blog, and the guilt rapidly dissipates.

But a part of me is sorry you are suffering. Have you considered the possibility that you are just wrong, that your beliefs are being repudiated because they are wrong, and maybe you should change your mind? Maybe Obama isn't the antichrist, maybe letting gays marry is a good thing, maybe better access to health care is a good thing? I know, crazy talk, but give it a try.

6/29/2015 08:23:00 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

Have I considered it?
Constantly. That's the difference.

6/29/2015 09:20:00 AM  
Blogger JWM said...

Considered that we're wrong? Many of us came from your side of the political aisle. We grew up. Many of us had no animus toward homosexuals. You changed that. Many of us were sympathetic to your cause. Were. You have proven yourselves to be more hateful, intolerant, and bigoted against the straight world than we ever were against you. Wingnut tears delicious? We're not crying, douche bag. We're shaking our heads in disgust and revulsion.

6/29/2015 06:36:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

I was for the redefinition of marriage long before I was against it. But that was when I was young enough to know everything.

6/29/2015 07:30:00 PM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

Being reduced to Love isn't so bad. It clears up a lot of chaff and chuff and sound and fury.

Serve, and don't judge.

6/29/2015 07:41:00 PM  
Blogger Christina M said...

I'm not crying either. I'm quietly fighting. The Rosary is my sword. I'm enjoying my family, my friends, my dogs, where I live, and the millions of multicolored zinnias I planted this Spring. godsdog

6/29/2015 08:10:00 PM  
Blogger Van Harvey said...

JWM @7:25, Nicely and powerfully put.

" are you dealing with the madness? What's your secret, you unreasonably happy bastards?"

What is True, Is, what isn't, isn't. I no longer get too worked up over what isn't there.

Oh, I'm still game for a good debate, but only with people who are at least interested in what is True - it's fine if we disagree on what is True, so long as I can see that they are seeking the truth; if they are,I can live with how poorly they do so.

But those who aren't? Or who wish to be obstinate deny or contradict what is True? My interest in them is just as substantial as their falsehoods.

And yes, I'm very much aware of the damage they can do to those I love, but the concern or worry can only go so far down. The melancholy is there, it seems perpetually, but there's a sweetness to it that can't be beaten down. I take pleasure in my life, my wife, kids and family, I fully soak up the little things, like the amazing sound of my son letting fly with the acoustic guitar here in the living room for 10 min to an hour, letting loose every ramification of the hook and melody in his head. Truly awesome, a blessing.

And always the message seems to come through, especially if I do begin to get worked up: It isn't True, and the Truth I revel in, IS. I'm not in denial here, or apathy, I'm very much aware of just how badly hyper-evil it could all go, and quickly, but...

After all, it's only a movie. And it too shall pass.

6/30/2015 07:29:00 PM  
Blogger Van Harvey said...

Julie said "...I actually find it quite easy to pray for them these days..."

Yes. The bulk of the melancholy is for those who are so lost and willfully endarkened, I feel such despair for them, for the waste of what could have been, and pray that they will realize it in time for themselves.

But it is their life, and I can't live it for them, and dwelling upon it as if I could, is just as insubstantial as their own falseness. It goes down only do deep, and gets let go.

6/30/2015 07:41:00 PM  

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