In other words, what we call satanic is what they call enlightened. "We" -- not you, Jethro, the enlightened -- "embrace a large diversity of individuals from a wide spectrum of political and cultural backgrounds --"
Okay, stop right there. I think I'm gonna hurl. Do you really believe this? Or does what you call satanism have the effect of completely foreclosing self-awareness? You just said that people with whom you disagree are crass and superstitious tribal theocrats. I don't feel very embraced.
"... but we’re all unified by our respect for individual rights and pluralism. It is axiomatic within [progressive] Satanism that individuals must be judged for their own actions and for their own merits."
If that's the case, then ur doin it rong.
This reminds me of how modern tyrannies always describe themselves as "democratic" or as "republics": during the Cold War there was the (East) German Democratic Republic and the Democratic Republic of (North) Vietnam. Now there is the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. The Islamic Republic of Iran. The People's Republic of China. Each as frighteningly diverse as our contemporary left.
It is axiomatic "that individuals must be judged for their own actions and for their own merits." That's a coincidence. That's axiomatic for us too. Someone must be interfering with the implementation of this broadminded and magnanimous principle. I wonder who it could be?
"Slavery in the United States was traditionally -- and rather credibly, from a theological perspective -- justified on scriptural grounds."
Er, no. It was never credibly justified on scriptural grounds, but rather, rationalized on that basis in order to attempt an end run around a Declaration of Independence animated by the Christian principle that all men are created equal.
Prior to this, no one had to justify slavery on any basis. Rather, it was self-evident that the strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must. In a word, a world ruled by power (or the metacosmic left, if you prefer). But once God incarnates as man, man is seen in a new light, even if it takes centuries to be seen by people living in Rio Linda.
Note also that southern slavery was not a creature of theology, but of the state. Democrats were and always have been statists. Jim Crow was enforced by law. But in the US, the purpose of positive law is to protect natural rights. We have a natural right to be free. Therefore, Democrats were lawless then, just as they are lawless today. Have you ever heard of a Republican riot? Of course not. That's what Democrats do.
The above might sound irrelevant to our discussion of the cosmic axioms of Thomas, but the opposite is true. As mentioned a few posts back, truth is truth. Thus you have three options: conform yourself to it; rebel against it; or invert it.
The left chooses option three, as per the editorial above. This is why they "ironically" accept the mantle of satanism, as Satan was not only the first rebel against a "tyrannical" God, but he attempts to build a "counter-kingdom," so to speak, based upon an inversion of truth.
For example, in reality, the left utterly rejects the principle of merit. But like a North Korea that pretends to be democratic, the left pretends to want universal standards for all.
If that were the case, then Elizabeth Warren wouldn't pretend to be an Indian and Hillary Clinton wouldn't pretend to be a woman. We wouldn't have to suffer with "wise Latinas" on the Supreme Court, or punish Asian guys named Robert Lee. Certainly we wouldn't frame a cartoonish indictment against an entire race by branding it "privileged." The Obama White House would honor the bust of Winston Churchill instead of dishonoring itself with pestilent creatures such as Al Sharpton.
The key point to remember is that satanism -- the real kind -- always involves inversion: of truth, of virtue, of beauty. It is why ESPN can honor the "courage" of Bruce Jenner for taking his sexual identity confusion to the extreme, or why NFL players can denigrate the only country in the world where they would be so richly rewarded, and which has the most affluent black population of any nation. Inversion.
I wonder if Thomas says anything directly about it? Let's see here...
Nah, let's just continue page by page. In so doing, a deeper truth will emerge; or better, a vision of a properly ordered and bright-side up cosmos.
Now, at the top of this cosmos is God; or rather, God is the name we give for this top. This top is necessary and therefore eternal. It not only Is, but cannot not be. Conversely, We Are (thanks to I AM), but might not have been. Therefore, we are dependent (at least vertically) upon necessary being.
How do finite beings orient themselves to a necessary being that is infinite and eternal? Long story short, via the mode of faith. Faith is what makes the leap from finitude to infinitude. Furthermore -- and this is important -- faith is already a tacit foreknowledge of its object. Faith not only exists because its object does, but is a kind of prolongation of the object -- or of its energies (i.e., grace).
So, as Thomas says, the "ordering of the intellect to infinity would be vain and senseless if there were no infinite object of knowledge." But the infinite is the necessary ground of the finite, just as eternity is the ground of time.
Thus, "although the human reason is unable perfectly to comprehend what lies beyond its limits, nevertheless it acquires much perfection for itself if it, at least in some way, perceives by faith."
Put conversely, if you are devoid of faith, then you will be vulnerable to a kind of systematic stupidity, because you will fill this space with your own finite knowledge and mistake it for (or elevate it to) God. From a purely metaphysical standpoint, God is no-thing. Jumping ahead a bit, Thomas says that "This is the final human knowledge of God: to know that we do not know God."
But there is intermediate (cataphatic) knowledge short of the final (apophatic) un-knowing, for "God is one in reality but multiple according to our minds; we know him in as many ways as created things represent him." And God is represented quintessentially in the human person -- which explains the enigma of how each human being can be unique.
In other words -- and this is a self-evident truth -- man is one because God is. This is not in reference to the oneness of human nature, but rather, the opposite: the unrepeatable oneness of each individual. We are not ants, despite the left's project to deny our uniqueness and lump us into categories such as race, gender, class, etc. To the extent that you force the latter upon individuals, then you are indeed doing Satan's heavy lifting.
So we rate the Washington Post's editorial Meta-Ironically True.