Nick B. Steves on Social Matter pointed out that I had presented a “cardboard cut out” of Christianity, and since I have admiration for certain Christians, and certain elements of traditionalist Christianity, I have decided to write a blog post on this topic. I experienced Christianity first as the Methodism of my parents. During adolescenthood I became a very serious evangelical for three years. Then, for about a year I experimented with traditional, conservative Anglicanism, after which I decided to leave Christianity alone. I have also researched plenty of information about Catholic and Orthodox denominations of Christianity, including the various ecumenical councils. Although I may not have experienced all forms of Christianity, I may not be as ignorant as I outwardly seem.
Now the problems with low-church Protestantism, and individual interpretation-ism, are obvious to neoreactionaries as forces which have decayed the social cohesion and hierarchical order of the West, and led to whiggish liberalism. I completely understand this, however, I would find it very hard to take the decisions of ecumenical councils as absolute truth. It’s not my cup of tea. It’s not that I don’t find cathedral architecture or traditional Christian music stunning, I do. One of my favorite Christian music pieces, De profundis, is featured is in the video below.
It’s how Christianity behaves as a moral authority that I have difficulty reconciling with my understanding of how civilizations persist in spite of foreign attack. The Catholic Church, through its authoritative hierarchy, managed include pagan practices of venerating iconography of divine beings (“saints”), and managed to use the Just War Theory to justify the military defence of Europe from invaders during the Middle Ages and Early Modern period. Protestantism has no such filter to justify the continuation of age-old pagan cultural traditions, or national defence, and the iconoclastic spirit of the Mosaic Law, as well as the pacifistic thinking expressed in the Sermon on the Mount came out unfiltered, and produced some of the whackiest people on earth: Adventists, Baptists, Quakers, anabaptists, Pentecostalists and more. So in my view, Catholicism, with its anti-iconoclastic, pagan elements, as well as the warrior ethic it permits, is great in some ways, but it is hard for me to understand it as an authentic continuation of first century Christianity. Thus to me, converting to Catholicism, or another similar form of Christianity, like Eastern Orthodoxy, would essentially be, in my view, lying to myself in a noble way. And I don’t like lying to myself.
If you can find some way to reconcile Christianity, including the “turn the other cheek” ethic, and the eschatology of the meek inheriting the earth (which looks to me like a revolutionary, not a reactionary statement) with the idea of defending a great civilization, people, or culture by force, then more power to you. I cannot. I may just lack the ability to do the proper mental gymnastics. Do not take this as an insult.
If my viewpoint on this subject continues to be a bother to some, I may add to this post, write more posts, or simply point to other websites which cover what I am saying on a more in-depth scale.
And yes, I did listen to the podcast Ascending The Tower – Episode XV, Part 1 – “That Sort Of Christo-Pagan Thing” (link)