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Letters by a modern St. Ferdinand III about cults

Gab@StFerdinandIII - Plenty of cults exist - every cult has its 'religious dogma', its idols, its 'prophets', its 'science', its 'proof' and its intolerant liturgy of demands.  Cults everywhere:  Islam, the State, the cult of Gay and Queer, Marxism, Darwin and Evolution, 'Science', Globaloneywarming, Changing Climate, Abortion....a nice variety for the human-hater, amoral, anti-rationalist to choose from.  It is so much fun mocking them isn't it ?

Tempus Fugit Memento Mori - Time Flies Remember Death 

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Thursday, August 23, 2012

F. A. Hayek, 'The Fatal Conceit' Chapter 9, 'Religion and the Guardian of Tradition'

No culture, no civilisation.

by StFerdIII

 In his opus, Hayek devotes his last chapter to Religion, big R. Hayek was an agnostic but recognized that tradition, heritage and the accumulation of 'what to do, and what not to do', created over roughly 12.000 years, the modern world. The fatal conceit is that anyone, especially those who have advanced degrees in soft social sciences, the politicians, the bureaucrats, the self-proclaimed 'big brains', or activists who name themselves scientists, feel entitled or worthy enough to ignore and indeed destroy the rich legacy which built modernity. Religion in the Judeo-Christian sense of that word, fusing Jerusalem, Athens and Rome into a cultural mix of unparalleled power, built the West.

 

Socialism – the most primitive theology imaginable – is by definition anti-modern. It is simplistic, atavistic, and quite banal, suitable for hunter-gatherers, or those mired in the early neolithic:

 

...On one hand are the kinds of attributes and emotions [emphasis added] appropriate to behaviour in the small groups wherein mankind lived for more than a hundred thousand years, wherein known fellows learnt to serve one another, and to pursue common aims. Curiously, these archaic, more primitive attitudes and emotions are now supported by much of rationalism, and by the empiricism, hedonism, and socialism associated with it.”

 

Socialism in any form – Fascism, Communalism or Communism, Marxism, Democratic Socialism, Statism – is of course rather barbaric, uncultured, simple, pre-modern, and for today's world, quite irrational. Socialism might work on a small collective in early neolithic Anatolia, in which the division of labour and specialization within trade and agriculture was reasonably simple and which would induce some form of communal organization. But as trade, commerce, agriculture, industry, and social life widen, deepen, and are extended, such animalist tendencies must be discarded for the simple fact that they fail as civilization develops. Socialism fails in every aspect imaginable.

 

Socialists today are usually of course, but not always, largely agnostic, and quite self-absorbed – with self-absorption a modern condition induced by a reduction in heritage and tradition; a product one could say of a hyper self-interested and self-obsessed culture. But even a socialist academic would be hard to argue against a key point Hayek makes, with regards to human development:

 

...even an agnostic ought to concede [emphasis added] that we owe our morals, and the tradition that has provided not only our civilisation but our very lives, to the....undoubted historical connections between religion and the values that have shaped and furthered our civilisation, such as the family and several property...In communist and socialist countries we are watching [written in the 1980s], how the natural selection of religious beliefs disposes of the maladapted.”

 

Socialism according to the agnostic Hayek, is a religion. I would certainly agree with that. When people say 'oh I am not religious, I don't believe in magic and fairy tales', they are dissimulating. The merry socialist has his own cult. He might belong to the religion of the cult of warm co2 induced 'climate change' [is there anything more immoderately stupid?], or maybe the cult of Obama, or maybe he is a knave of the cult of the state, or he might believe that communism is a great idea, regardless that 100 million who were butchered in the march to communal nirvana in the 20th century. The a-religious is religious alright.

 

But socialism, which in the main repudiates property, family, sex differentiation or importance, science, rationality and inquiry, and which demands that you join the communal, the state approved association and engage in state or socialist derived propaganda; ultimately fails. Socialism offends reason, humanism, free-will, free-speech and private pursuits. It is a system of coercion and rhetoric. The system will plunder you to pay someone else it deems to be worthy of aid. Whether or not that person or corporate entity should get aid is not debated. Whether or not the system of that aid is honest, efficacious or even necessary, is never debated. The important fact is that you follow the 'wise' elite as evinced by Plato and even Aristotle with their vague and rather ridiculous aspirations of the rule by the best [hoi aristoi]; and the few [olig archy]. Who are the best, why are they the best, and who exactly are these few ? No one knows.

 

...to imagine some wise elite coolly calculating the effects of various morals, selecting among them, and conspiring to persuade the masses by Platonic 'noble lies' to swallow an 'opium of the people' and thus to obey what advanced the interests of their rulers. No doubt choice among particular versions of basic religious beliefs was often decided by expedient decisions of secular rulers.”

 

Communal religions imposed from above always fail. Historically there is no disputing that fact. Even if you imposed the cult of Aton in ancient Egypt, people will merge Aton with whatever it is they want to worship. You end up quickly with a pantheon of 'gods' all competing for propitiation and relevancy. When you merge the church and state – as with Islam, Communism and Nazism – you end up denying the individual pursuit of spiritual inquiry, association and commitment. People will privately worship something more meaningful and important. At some point in time the edifice of the poli-cracy, the merger of politics and theocracy will crash since it cannot, and will not stand up to scrutiny and because it cannot and will not produce social value and social good which benefits the individual.

 

As Hayek observed the social and socialist 'will' replaces that of a divine 'will' which was in times past, a product of personal free-will. The will of the person and his natural law rights, emanate not from Sargon, Hammurabi, Ramses, Alexander, Caesar, Justinian, Charlemagne, or Rashid, but from a higher power, force or set of ideals, which transcends in the Platonist sense, any man-made creation or law-giving. Indeed natural law rights, not only supersede man-made 'rights' but in a well-functioning social-legal system, they constitute the basis of law and order. The immutable 'facts' and laws which include the free-will of the person, several property, family, ethics, charity and the pursuit within the law of happiness, is what marks out the heritage of a civilization. Only the West, which rejected the authoritarian socialism of Oriental theology, escaped slavery and state-worship and developed this theme.

 

Until recently that is. In the mid 19th century the 'West' began its fascination with the Orientalist worship of the central state. When that frail hermit Nietzsche pronounced the death of Judeo-Christianity and the rise of a new superman, which must be wrought from the ashes of Western culture, premised on the state and its collective will as its replacement, he was devastatingly accurate. Sad, sick, riddled with syphilis though he was, Nietzsche was in many ways prophetic. Denude your heritage and culture and reject your spiritual theology and then what ? In strides the grinning jack-booted state. In comes the communal. There exits civilisation.

 

==

Introduction

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

 


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