Thursday, February 26, 2009

On Prophets, True and False

I'm deeply troubled. I'm troubled at the honest shambles that we are in. I, for one, believe that the current economic troubles are but the first tremor to move through the cultural foundations of America.

The Salve Regina, the 1,500 year old hymn to Mary that Catholics have sung for centuries, describes this life as a "vale of tears". Often I have pondered the fact that calling life a "vale of tears" would only bring puzzlement to most Americans. Life is good here, and you will find very few dissenters from that proposal. We're not crying.

I wrote a blog post a couple of weeks ago that I had decided was too... well, it was too something to post. In it, I talked about the media and about how utterly baffling they can be. You see, the media are the prophets of our time - predicting or decreeing; opening and shutting the American mind. The catalyst for this thought, for me, was the whole media brouhaha over Richard Williamson, the Holocaust-denying bishop. Within moments of the story breaking, the media had decreed that Pope Benedict was woefully ignorant of their moral strictures and led the outcry against... I'm not sure what it was against, actually. There was a lot of railing, and judgement, fire and brimstone, and all the rest. I assume that the media wanted him to say he was sorry and that he shouldn't have done that.

I wish I could count the number of stories that decided that this issue proved that Pope Benedict was out-of-touch with reality. Dreamer! Stay there in Rome and mumble about condoms and women and whatever else you talk about which no one cares.

What was in my last post, which I did not post but I would like to include in this post, is the idea that as the culture slides towards Ghommorrah there will be more shocks like this most recent one. There will be moments where millions of people will be looking for an answer. And just like the prophets of Baal, who cut themselves and screamed asking Baal to make it rain, the media will scream and yell and paint bloody pictures. In that story, the people were rooting for Baal. Baal is a lot more fun than Yahweh - much more cheerful.

But when Elijiah showed the people that those prophets were doing little more than showmen, the crowd asked for their blood. And you know what? Elijiah gave it to them. Back in the B.P.C. era, you would find paintings of Elijia - knife in hand - standing atop a pile of the prophets of Baal.

I was talking to a friend about investments the other day. He said that his brother told him he should buy gold. He replied, "What am I going to do with a bar of gold - eat it?". I know I sound like a wack-o, but I'm investing in a generator and gasoline. I think people sense that there are cracks in the system - that this really is a vale of tears and that we have been dodging the bullet for the last fifty years. You don't have to be a prophet to suspect that tough times are ahead.

I'll close with the words of a real prophet - Mother Theresa. According to Mother, "The fruit of abortion is nuclear war". We've been spilling the blood. It's only reasonable to suspect that tough times may lie ahead.

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