Existential and Essential Threats
There must be considerable overlap between these soulless utensils and the radical environmentalists who confuse heaven and earth, thereby displacing notions of sin, purity, armageddon, and apocalypse to hysterical fears about the weather.
Yesterday while listening to the radio in the car, someone said something about "existential threat," and the notion popped into my head of essential threats, i.e., threats to our essence as opposed to our existence. For we can survive an existential threat but lose our essence -- which is the collective equivalent of "gaining the world but losing one's soul."
For example, we purportedly "won" the Cold War in 1991. That had been seen as an existential threat, but it was also an essential threat, being that communism and Americanism are at philosophical antipodes. Prager refers to the "American trinity" found on any coin, consisting of of Liberty, E Pluribus Unum, and In God We Trust, each a reflection of the others.
Conversely, the unholy trinity of the left would consist of illiberal and unjust Equality, divisive Multiculturalism, and a satanically inspired In Man We Trust.
Coincidentally, I'm reading Steven Hayward's new book (his two volume biography of Reagan here and here is indispensable). Apropos of what was said above in paragraph two, he speaks of his bewonderment at "how so many people who are concerned about understanding ecosystems and preserving the right order of wild nature could seem so indifferent or hostile to the idea of human nature and of the protection of human ecosystems." As if those things will just take care of themselves!
One side effect of the devolution from soul to body is the reduction of quality to quantity, or vertical to horizontal. The left is the horizontal party par excellence, not only failing to nurture the soul, but harboring an overt and unrelenting hostility to its very existence.
Thus, Hayward speaks of "the central obsession with much of the intellectual class," which understands problems in the most "simplistic terms" and deploying quantity "as a cudgel against existing institutions and structure."
This is consistent with our last post, which touched on the implicit agenda of the left, which is destruction per se -- in this case, quantity used as a weapon against quality. For example, the left uses any benign instance of quantitative disparity as proof of malevolent discrimination -- unless, of course, the numbers are in their favor, as in academia, the NBA, journalism, or the permanent shadow government.
Similarly, they use raw income statistics to promulgate the fiction that women are underpaid, or crime statistics to advance the lie that blacks are discriminated against in the criminal and judicial systems.
Anyway, because we have tended to focus on existential threats to the exclusion of essential ones, we have failed to take cognizance of the threat to our essence posed by the left. I've only just begun Patriotism is Not Enough, but Harry Jaffa certainly knew that "the most fundamental political question is the nature of the human soul."
For the same reason, he recognized in 1991 how our existential victory over communism could conceal the left's essential victory over us:
The defeat of Communism in the USSR and its satellite empires by no means assures its defeat in the world. Indeed, the release of the West from its conflict with the East emancipates utopian communism at home from the suspicion of its affinity with an external enemy. The struggle for the preservation of western civilization has entered a new -- and perhaps far more deadly and dangerous -- phase" (Jaffa, in Hayward).
Precisely. Looked at this way, the difference between Obama and Bush is just a family squabble between global elites, whereas Trump is the uninvited guest crashing the party.
For example, we've never had an administration that spoke truth to the satanic Powers and Principalities of the UN as Nikki Haley did the other day. That is the kind of firm pimp hand needed to deal with these truly awful human beings.
The same pimp hand, by the way, that Trump is applying to the Democrat operatives in the MSM. He must slap at them and continue slapping until journalistic morale improves.
Hayward paraphrases a formulation by Jaffa to the effect that the fate of the world hinges on the United States, the fate of the U.S. on the conservative movement, and conservatism on the... Republican Party, of all things. I would only add that the fate of the Republican Party hinges on the preservation of the American trinity alluded to above. But in any event, "the Democratic Party is just as intellectually corrupt today as it was in the 1850s" and at every point in between.
For it has no "intellectual" basis at all, only an "anti-intellectual" one. Not anti-intellectual in the sense of uneducated, uncultured, and hostile toward ideas. Rather, they are the enemy of the intellect per se, such that they literally use man's intelligence in order to undermine the intellect -- or use thinking to render coherent thought impossible.
To take one obvious example, this is what Darwinists, sociobiologists, and evolutionary psychologists do when they use the miraculous gift of intelligence to affirm that intelligence is just a side effect of random mutation, ultimately rooted in mere matter -- a flagrantly self-refuting absurdity if ever there was one.
"Nothing," writes Schuon, "is more contradictory than to deny the spirit, or even simply the psychic element, in favor of matter alone, for it is the spirit that denies, whereas matter remains inert and unconscious. The fact that matter can be thought about proves precisely that materialism contradicts itself at its starting point."
In short -- and try to disprove this! -- "the subjective could not arise from the objective, and to believe otherwise is to understand nothing of subjectivity."
In the same book, Schuon mentions how "the internal contradiction of Marxism is that it wants to build a perfect humanity while destroying man" -- again, build existence while destroying the essence.
To exist means to survive. But is the survival worth it if it is only in the material sense? "One readily speaks of the duty of being useful to society, but one fails to ask whether this society is useful, that is to say, whether it realizes man's, and thus a human community's, reason for being."
To ask this question is to indict multiculturalism, collectivism, feminism, and the rest of the left's anti-intellectual arsenal. For "it is the individual, in his solitary station before the Absolute and thus by the exercise of his highest function, who is the aim and reason for being of the collectivity" (ibid.).
If the left prevails in its anti-human mission, it will be a quintessential case of "the operation was a success but the patient died."