Many of us who are of a spiritual bent are rightfully concerned about the very public Black Mass going on in Oklahoma this weekend. For those of you who aren't, let me explain why you should be concerned, and how this event relates to various collapse scenarios.
Let's set aside the supernatural dynamite you are playing with when you call upon dark forces. (I'll just comment that you are really stupid if you do so, and I myself suffered greatly after playing around with a Ouija board in high school.)
One of my biggest fears isn't that we are going to have a financial collapse today that will render everyone in ruins. It's what our world is going to look like in 40 years - and who is going to be running it.
I'm going to be America-centric here, so apologies to our foreign readers. But I believe these observations apply to most people in the Western world - or what we might have to start calling the "Post-Western World."
Let me ask you: What kind of world would you like to live in? Do you want to be surrounded by people who are genuinely kind, respectful, and have a semblance of concern for their fellow man? Or would you prefer to be living in a world filled with hedonists, narcissists, and nihilists who simply feel they need to "get theirs" before they die?
I know I'd prefer the former. And generally speaking, that sort of culture is fostered by some sort of morality. Now yes, atheists can be moral (my father is an atheist), and quite a few atheists realize that some religion is actually good in that it helps provide people with a moral compass. It's perhaps a positive development that some atheists have started their own "churches" that follow a set of secular humanist ideals and moral codes.
So I'm less concerned about the average atheist who might tend to be a peace-loving libertarian. I'm more concerned about people who aren't full-on atheists but who are either spiritually unaware or drawn to the dark side. Many people who are "unchurched" in America are not interested in any moral code, much less an atheist one. The unchurched who are "spiritual" tend to follow a narcissistic spirituality inspired by Satan himself: It's all about me, and what I manifest into my life. I'm God.
The problem is this: To be a libertarian atheist requires some brains, and most people simply aren't that smart. So you've got a lot of people who need something to drive them, and it's these folks who are the most easily led astray. These folks need religion, but they need a good religion.
I know some of you are going to comment that all religion is bad and has caused more wars and death than anything else in history. No, sorry, that award goes to Communism, which killed more people in the 20th century (over 100 million) than any other ideology in the world before and since.
To suggest that all religions are equally bad is to be a simplistic, black-and-white thinker with no ability to perceive nuance. Lest you think I am just going to be pro-Christianity here, let me state for the record that I'd be fairly heartened to see America's youth take up Buddhism - but a real, spiritual Buddhism - not the kind of atheistic, angry Buddhism that some hipsters use to become holier than thou.
China previously became a rich, powerful culture under thousands of years of Buddhism. It was Mao Tse Tung's Communism in the 20th century that destroyed Chinese culture. Only now are the Chinese trying to retake their rich heritage.
Here in the West, the decline and fall of Western civilization is directly related to the decline of mainline Christianity. You can slice or dice it all you want, but the fewer people we have going to church, the more decadent and stupid we've become. Smart atheists recognize this and the value that a Christian morality provided to society.
It has become fairly cool to bash Christianity these days. Christians and Jews are two of the only acceptable targets for hate-mongering in America - but heaven forbid you criticize a bloody jihadist. What has happened is that a lot of people from my generation (X) and younger have eschewed church for a more "tolerant" lifestyle, which involves more drugs, more sex, and more selfish indulgences.
I lived in this cultural environment for a long-time in Los Angeles. No-one that I was friends with went to Christian church there. The best people that I knew went with me to a New Thought "spiritual center," and were fairly bright lights in the darkness. But I knew far too many lost souls.
I think of one guy I dated briefly, who was a real piece of work. I figured out quickly that he was not only a bit of an alcoholic, but on at least one anti-depressant, and he was sullen and liked to watch E! Entertainment - because he had no higher interests. He was selfish, self-absorbed, and treated me abominably. That ended quickly with my blowing up at him for being a jerk.
Like many young men in Los Angeles, he was a total user of women, and had no moral code to speak of other than self-pleasure. Many of the women I knew in Los Angeles were not much better, and were focused on personal vanity, obtaining the spotlight, and using their bodies to get things from the men in their lives. The key word I would use to describe most of these people would be "selfish." A lot of these people were on drugs and into their 30s and beyond living like messy college students and partying. And these were the mainstream people in Hollywood.
While Hollywood tends to be hardly representative of the rest of the country, it does lead the country due to its powerful hold on the media. I just think back to all of the drama and emotional dysfunction I endured (including my own) during my 20s and 30s in Hollywood. Most everyone I knew was a bit of a "hot mess." These are not people who are poised to make a difference in the world. On the contrary, they are desperately sucking out whatever life they can get from everyone and everything around them.
One of the reasons I returned to Christianity in my late 30s was that I was tired of the nihilism and narcissism around me. Christianity appeals to me in that it ideally teaches you to be a better person - to have character.
"Character" is an old-fashioned term these days that people might tend to sneer at. But "character" is what built this country - those traits of hard work, charity, frugality, loyalty and restraint.
The best religions teach self-restraint in the pursuit of higher goals. This includes Christianity, Buddhism, and Sikhism.
The worst religions either demand compliance through rigid, arbitrary rules designed to control their followers by force (including fundamentalist Islam and the FLDS) or throw restraint totally out the window (Satanism).
Without restraint, we cannot have a functioning society. The very reason we are in such massive dire straights in America today is because of lack of restraint. The Federal debt has a direct correlation with the destruction of character in America. We have lost our ability to appreciate the value of frugality, restraint, and common sense.
Now, progressives in America feel they own the value of "charity," however, charity without restraint is simply immature, foolish, and destined to backfire. It is in many ways not true charity at all - because a charity born from a bottomless pit of debt requires no sacrifice. It is therefore not done out of self-sacrifice and cannot properly be called charity. It is easy to give away money you don't own.
So back to our Satanists. They are part of a greater trend in America to glamorize the dark side of the paranormal. Hey, I appreciate a ghost story like a lot of people, but I'm getting a little creeped out at the sheer volume of teen paranormal romance books on the market today. Far too many teens are being fed with the idea that it's glamorous to be in love with a vampire, werewolf, or actual demon.
There will always be one dominant "morality" in any society, and if the tables turn too much towards the dark side, we could see days ahead when more and more teens are becoming "Craigslist Killers," where stray animals will be routinely used for sacrifice, and locking our doors at night will not be enough to keep out the Clockwork Orange marauders from stealing your possessions or raping your wife (and you).
Think I'm overblowing things? Well, just compare what is sold as "entertainment" these days to what most people enjoyed 30, 40 and 50 years ago. For pete's sake, mild-mannered Lawrence Welk used to have one of the most popular and longest running shows on television. Now HBO fills every show it does with pornography and explicit violence. You think this has no effect on people? Really? Why do advertisers spend so much money on 30-second ad spots during the Superbowl? If one 30-second ad can have that much impact, then what is the impact of watching hours and hours of sadistic pornography or playing violent video games by yourself?
Don't kid yourself. The long-term effective of toxic media, lack of morality, and broken homes could be a populace that has turned completely feral. We're seeing it already in the inner cities.
I can only hope that as people get sick of the darkness, like I did, they will turn back towards the light. What do you think?
P.S. For those interested in symbols, please note the double triangles (aka "pyramids") and giant "eye" on the Clockwork Orange poster. For more information on media symbolism, check out Vigilant Citizen.
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