Junior Ganymede
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Material poverty is Not the big issue in the modern West

October 27th, 2016 by Bruce Charlton

The continued, or even increasing, focus on the supposed alleviation of material poverty in modern Western society (since Leftism became mainstream and almost universal it is indeed the main focus for many people, especially among intellectuals) – including in all types of liberal Christianity, and also to a disturbing extent in real-Christian churches – is a major error; because poverty is less of a problem in the modern West that at any other time and place in human history.

Our prime problems are quite different – and grossly neglected.

Here are a few:

1. Spiritual poverty

This is so extreme in the modern West as to be total among many people – especially the Establishment. Indeed, it is not only that most people are suffering a spiritual famine; more than this, the whole spiritual realm is typically denied – regarded as unreal, imaginary, wholly ‘subjective’.

People are literally dying from spiritual poverty; in all senses of dying – from suicide (fast and direct, or slow and indirect) to the willed death of the West and its nations and peoples; to the chosen self-damnation (explicit, deliberate rejection of salvation – even if it were accepted as true) expressed by so many in public life.

2. The unrepented sexual revolution

The sexual revolution – the destruction of marriage and family; expanding the legitimacy, desirability, status of extra-marital sexuality, the open-ended expansion of sexual identity and activity… These have become the major motivation and driving secret fantasy for many, and ever more, people.

We live in the most psychologically-sexualised society ever, by far; and this sexuality is more subverted and inverted than ever before – all officially sanctioned and rewarded; opposition being denigrated, suppressed and persecuted.

3. Dishonesty

The level of dishonesty in public discourse, and of cynicism about dishonesty in personal interaction, has grown with astonishing rapidity to a very extreme degree.

There are many institutions and people whose entire discourse is dishonest down to a paragraph level of analysis (a few sentences will of course be factually correct – but only to make more convincing the strategic dishonesty of larger units of meaning).

In a phrase – with very few exceptions, people in public life are not even trying to be honest.

4. Ugliness

It is not easy to make everything beautiful – but at present many people are deliberately making themselves and the environment ugly – soul-destroying (to be exact).

The phenomenon embraces tattoos and other skin mutilations, many ‘fashions’ in make-up, clothing and hair, architecture, the planning and design of cities and suburbs, and The Arts – most drama, movies, novels, poetry, visual arts, music…

These activities do not any longer aim to create beauty; but to destroy beauty, mock beauty, to desensitise us to horror; and to assert that the viscerally repellent is ‘truly’ beautiful.

5. Loneliness

The secret, never-mentioned endemic misery of the modern world.

We are social beings, we are designed to live in families and among long-term friends – but in an era of neophilia, gimmick-seeking, impatience, easy fatigue and hair-trigger boredom… so many people are essentially alone in the world, unloved – free of personal responsibilities at the cost of having nobody who cares about them for themselves.

For more and more people, social life has degenerated into a combination of financial transactions with a war of mutual manipulation in pursuit of pleasure.

They are existentially alone – since they also deny the presence of God.

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These are enough examples to make my point. The focus on material poverty and its alleviation in modern mainstream (i.e. Leftist) politics and in the major churches is worse than irrelevant; it is a systematic displacement of attention and effort away from the really terrible problems of our time and place: problems (unlike material poverty) that are worse here and now than ever before or elsewhere.

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October 27th, 2016 06:00:14
1 comment

G.
October 27, 2016

Coals to Newcastle, and food to the obese.

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