Nothing surprises me anymore. But when I read about "Catharsis on the Mall" with its plan to erect a statue of a 45 foot nude woman I couldn't help thinking of Robert Hugh Benson's Lord of the World about the coming of the anti-Christ. One of the features of the humanitarian "religion" envisioned in the book (which replaces Christianity), is the establishment of four mandatory religious ceremonies celebrated annually including one called Maternity that features a statue of a nude woman.
|Compare the symbolism in this "temple"|
to the symbol of Isis, goddess of
fertility in the photo below.
People long to worship and Fr. Benson's anti-Christ doesn't eliminate religion, rather he creates a "new worship," a man-centered paganism similar to Adolph Hitler's creation of the "superman" and all the pseudo-religious rituals of the Third Reich including a "naming ceremony" for his Lebensborns which were essentially brothels for Arian military to impregnate young women and have children for the Reich.
In Benson's dystopian world, the first "religious" event is to celebrate "Paternity" with the statue of a nude man described as a "kind of Apollo -- or Jupiter." Considering that Fr. Benson's book was published in 1907, his "new worship" symbolism of the superman seems prophetic. He describes the new worship through the eyes of Mabel, wife of a government minister working zealously to accomplish the goals of the anti-Christ:
The new worship was a crowning sign of the triumph of Humanity....Surely this instinct within her was a true one; she desired to stand with her fellows in some solemn place, consecrated not by priests but by the will of man; to have as her inspirers sweet singing and the peal of organs;...to sing aloud her praise of the glory of life, and to offer by sacrifice and incense and emblematic homage to That from which she drew her being, and to whom one day she must render it again. Ah! these Christians had understood human nature, she had told herself a hundred times: it was true that they had degraded it, darkened light, poisoned thought, misinterpreted; but they had understood that man must worship -- must worship or sink.
|Egyptian symbol of goddess Isis|
Clearly Catharsis on the Mall included the nude statue of a woman with an undisguised message of "R-evolution." Exploitation seems more like it to me. The Park Service cancelled their permit for the statue, thank God. Catharsis planned to leave the monstrosity in place, facing the White House, for four months leading up to the women's march in 2018. The organizers made it clear they hoped it would send a message to President Trump although plans for the statue's erection began before the election.
Catharsis on the Mall has all the elements of a pagan, new age event. The organizers describe it this way:
Catharsis on the Mall is a unique political demonstration because it includes multiple performance stages of varying size and design that by themselves express demands to lawmakers through mobility, interactivity, and radical inspirational expression....
The most important highlight of the event is “The Temple Burn.” The Temple is a non denominational sanctuary, a place of sacredness and solemnity; a place for remembrance, grief, and renewal that anchors the event. The burning of the temple expresses this transition, letting go, the continual flow of life; it encourages the lived experience of catharsis. It’s what makes the temple a sacred experience for each individual.
|The modern golden calf? |
Or is it the dragon from Revelation?
Burning Man and Catharsis both have a pagan ritualistic sound about them as well as the glorification of man, a theme Fr. Benson would understand. Last year Catharsis went after the war on drugs chanting around a burning cauldron-like edifice -- "No more drug war." The purpose of Catharsis is social change. Judging from the photos and videos of the event, the social change is not based on Christian values but new age ritualism. In fact, many of the videos available about Catharsis make me think of the vision Moses must have seen coming down from the mountain: a golden dragon, people dressed in animal heads, promotion of drug use (although the organizers make it clear that drugs are discouraged and are illegal), suggestive dancing, drum-beating, etc. But they do tell their supporters to clean up after themselves.
Here is the full 45-minute video of the burning ceremony mourning Trump's victory. It's quite a spectacle, but the elements behind it are troubling. Consider what Chriss wrote about "the chain-link cathedrals" recently. Is this another example of people who've lost the sense of real worship, adopting a sad imitation?