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Thursday, October 20, 2016

Build a Community of Civility to Sustain Intellectual and Moral Life

Catholic homeschooling families:
 monasteries against the new dark ages
I've been catching up on my Wanderer reading since I got back from our Canadian trip and this morning I read an excellent article, Bouleversement by Deacon James H. Toner from the July 21st edition. (I couldn't find it online, but you can buy a copy at The Wanderer website. I'm saving mine; it's that good.)

The word bouleversement means:
turmoil and convulsion; it points to an inversion of things, especially a violent one; but it also suggests confusion and convulsion; it suggests a forceful overthrow of what we know.
Sounds like what we are living through doesn't it where down is up and up is down, where men can "marry" men and women can "marry" women; where disturbed boys can use the girls' showers and locker rooms because their "gender identity" is really female?

Deacon Toner fills his article with quotes that clue us in to exactly why we are living in this state of insanity. He begins with Alexander Solzhenitsyn saying, "Men have forgotten God -- that is why all this has happened." Amen!  But then he points out some of the agents of destruction. John Dewey is a big one. The "Father of modern education" said this:
There is no God and there is no soul. Hence, there is no need for the props of traditional religion. With dogma and creed excluded, then immutable truth is also dead and buried. There is no room for fixed, natural law or moral absolutes. 
Is it any wonder that every novel idea, no matter how irrational and obscene, has permeated public education? Dewey promoted atheistic evolution and was a signer of the Humanist Manifesto which denies God and makes man a god unto himself. No wonder modern education excludes God from the classroom but welcomes Planned Parenthood with their immoral sex education instruction. No wonder our society is sinking back into the muck out of which God formed Adam.

Deacon Toner also quotes some individuals upholding the value of human life and moral truth. He gives us the testimony of American scientist, Leon Kass, who wrote, "Human nature itself lies on the operating table, ready for alteration, for eugenic and psychic 'enhancement,' for wholesale redesign." a fact the scientist laments. Unfortunately, the "wholesale redesign" envisioned by modern change agents is found in dystopian novels like Brave New World, 1984, and The Hunger Games where Big Brother governments control every aspect of human life among the peons whose only function is to serve (and worship?) the tinpot gods running the show.

But  Deacon Toner doesn't leave us in despair. He begins his article quoting Alasdair MacIntryre who wrote a generation ago that:
...what matters at this stage is the construction of local forms of community within which civility and the intellectual and moral life can be sustained through the new dark ages which are already upon us...this time, however, the barbarians are not waiting beyond the frontiers; they have already been governing us for quite some time. And it is our lack of consciousness of this that constitutes part of our predicament.
We need to wake up and take positive steps to ensure that within our homes and families we resist the bouleversement and create little oases of peace and culture and Catholic truth. Fr. John Hardon often called homeschooling families the monasteries that will preserve civilization from the wrecking ball and many Catholic families are a sign of contradiction to the evil world. It is not a new struggle, but one that began with Adam and Eve's "dialogue" with the serpent.

We have the remedy. As Deacon Toner writes,
It is to beseech and to cling to and to give thanks for that grace without which all human enterprise, like the infamous Tower of Babel, finally and certainly putrefies. It is, Mirabile dictu, all a matter of the apostrophe, for we are, after all is said and done, either gods or God's."
Whom will you choose? God or Mammon? As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.  

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