Let us progress through a number of concepts. The institution described in the following lines should quickly become apparent.
Apostasy punishable by exile and ostracism, dogmatic belief fanatically intolerant of heterodoxy, sanctimonious self-flagellation, outrage and righteous exasperation towards the impious, evangelical conduits for conversion, a well-funded clergy through tithes of the faithful, physical institutions that mark their presence across a proclaimed dominion, connections to influence secular authorities, and a fastidiously conceived demarcation between high and low culture.
Did you guess? Correct. I was not describing religious fundamentalism, but rather, contemporary Leftism.
You could be forgiven – with 10 Hail Mary’s (Facebook comments) and 20 Our Fathers (Tweets) for Gaia and cultural relativism – for your misattribution. Even the devout fail to recognise the dogmatism of their own unwavering creed. Their delusions of grandeur are so intrinsically interwoven into a core identity they have become inalienable rights that must be blessed with sacraments. A modern rendering of Justinian’s Codex Repetitae Praelectionis is receiving wide circulation; books 2-12 have simply been cast into the furnace.
Similar to the fate suffered by the hapless autodidact Menocchio, who was burned at the stake in sixteenth-century Friuli, one must know the reigning doctrinal language forced upon the social order. To be unaware, let alone dare to oppose, is blasphemy. Those who cannot appropriately articulate their purportedly heretical views face trial under duress from The Inquisition and almost unavoidable excommunication.
Unlike the Church, atonement or appeal is not an option. With sometimes tragic consequences, De incarcerandis fedelibus is condemned before the ink has dried.
Unless a modern-day Wycliffe appears, who knows the Scriptures better than the institution and will defend the meek, the risk is tacit kneeling before the altar. There are too many – lacking Abelardian erudition or courage – whose manhood has already been removed.
Despite what some would have you believe, On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres does not proclaim The Anointed in the Kingdom of Brussels to occupy the zenith celestial orbit. Yet many in the Kingdom share their evangelist peers’ cognitive dissonance.
Highhanded ecclesiasts ride in gilded carriages and promenade through exclusive marketplaces in search of wares not to be found in the commoners’ vulgarly modest bazaars, only to occasionally bestow their munificent gaze upon outwardly obsequious retainers.
The cauldron is bubbling, however, as two witches stir the brew. It is only a matter of time before their wayward sister(s) joins the incantation. The most notable heretical incarnation who is preaching to the apostates was a predictably and pre-emptively demonized pariah. Despite the innumerable articles of Faith to the contrary, betwixt these rocky pillars, Gabriel’s horn has not been blown.
Although the current manifestation in the New World may not appeal to all dissenters or herald the Reformation, as the doctrine continues to be challenged an appropriate vessel will eventually emerge. When legitimate declarations of indignation are disregarded, schisms are bound to appear. Whether the Church’s authority is torn asunder from without or collapses from within, the sun seems to be slowly setting. However, some words of warning if one wishes to see a new dawn: prayer alone will not suffice.
Got something to add? Join the discussion and comment below.