Author Topic: Traditional Catholics and secular culture  (Read 20160 times)

Offline Pon de Replay

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #15 on: January 02, 2018, 08:23:57 AM »
Are you basing these conclusions off of your own examinations of patristic writings or off of various secondary sources?

I can't claim to have read the entire library of the Early Church Fathers, but I have examined much of the relevant portions first-hand.  My two favorite saints are St. Clement of Alexandria and St. John Chrysostom, so I would say I'm at least well-acquainted with the thought of those two particular Fathers.  I will grant that they could be outliers, but many other Fathers are frequently quoted saying much the same things that they did.  And surely, if the consensus of the Fathers was fractured on matters of strictness, the laxists would be wasting no time copiously quoting all the lax Fathers left and right.  But that's not the case.  The laxists are forced to accept the Fathers and argue from there: "well, those were different times," "you have to look at that stuff in terms of nuance and context," "the Fathers were overzealous and proto-Islamic," or "the Church says we don't have to live like that anymore."  I will grant all of this, but it's relativism.

It's true, as you have indicated, that the Early Fathers were not unanimous on every last point of strict discipline.  It's not like sheet music, where if you were to follow what one Father said it would be exactly the same as some other Father.  But what it is like is variations on a theme.  And the theme is: "be not conformed to this world," erring on the side of caution.
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Offline Pon de Replay

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #16 on: January 02, 2018, 08:29:57 AM »
The dancing, hard drinking, sinning Trads deliver the goods more often.

Results matter.

If "results matter," then traditional Catholicism itself is a failure, as it was taken down from within by modernist theologians, rainbow sash priests, and middle-aged nuns doing interpretive dance.  It has to answer for what Abp. Lefebvre called the "mass apostasy" of the hierarchy.  That's fairly small potatoes compared to "Jansenist" parents having a few kids lapse.  Parents are not said to be infallible.  Traditional Catholicism must have a fatal flaw, because it eventually lost out, too, just like so-called "Jansenism" did.  I mean, at this point, Francis is the pope.

I'm fine with the Catholic faith being little more than an intellectual assent to a creed (if that's indeed what it is), with some requisite stances on abortion, contraception, and homosexuality kept up, and from there you can dance, drink hard, and sin like a pagan.  That's fine, but that isn't what Early Christianity was.  The gospels say that a person's righteousness has to exceed that of the Scribes and the Pharisees—which is to say, that you have to do better than the people who justify their laxity with their parsing, exemptions, and legalisms.  Don't get me wrong, though, Early Christianity eventually lost in the "results matter" department itself.  That religion is dead, long having been overtaken by the spirit of the Pharisees.  The spirit of Early Christianity has only been revived in small pockets: in the Amish, Mennonites, Quakers, Russian Old Believers, and certain substrata of traditional Catholicism.  You can tell them by their women in headgear, with signs of early aging and UV damage.
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Offline Pon de Replay

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #17 on: January 02, 2018, 08:42:16 AM »
Has anyone been to a traditional Catholic wedding that did not involve dancing of any sort?  when i imagine Our Lord at the wedding at Cana I always imagine that there was dancing of some sort there?

A lot of non-Christians have a difficult time with the Incarnation.  The Incarnation does make some sense, though, pertaining to mysticism, and the Early Church theologians saw it as a model for theosis ("God became man so that man might become like God").  It does run into some problems on the level of, say, imagining God as a babbling baby, as Christians do this time of year.  Some of the aesthetics surrounding that are enough to overcome the objection, however; if you gaze on an icon of the Virgin and Child it can compel your soul to a certain extent.  But to think of God dancing at Cana to whatever was the first-century equivalent of klezmer music is just too ridiculous to consider.  Thank goodness there is no tradition of icons or paintings of that travesty (if it happened, but I doubt it did).

« Last Edit: January 02, 2018, 08:44:45 AM by Pon de Replay »
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Offline Chestertonian

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #18 on: January 02, 2018, 08:47:17 AM »
Has anyone been to a traditional Catholic wedding that did not involve dancing of any sort?  when i imagine Our Lord at the wedding at Cana I always imagine that there was dancing of some sort there?

A lot of non-Christians have a difficult time with the Incarnation.  The Incarnation does make some sense, though, pertaining to mysticism, and the Early Church theologians saw it as a model for theosis ("God became man so that man might become like God").  It does run into some problems on the level of, say, imagining God as a babbling baby, as Christians do this time of year.  Some of the aesthetics surrounding that are enough to overcome the objection, however; if you gaze on an icon of the Virgin and Child it can compel your soul to a certain extent.  But to think of God dancing at Cana to whatever was the first-century equivalent of klezmer music is just too ridiculous to consider.  Thank goodness there is no tradition of icons or paintings of that travesty (if it happened, but I doubt it did).

I'm not saying I can imagine him dancing along.  But he didn't chastise everyone with whips either.  I think if He had the mindset of the Baptists he would have said "the last thing these sinners need is more wine.  Wine just leads to dancing and merriment"
« Last Edit: January 02, 2018, 08:49:28 AM by Chestertonian »
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Offline nmoerbeek

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #19 on: January 02, 2018, 08:47:58 AM »
oh boy oh boy more reasons why achieving salvation is impossible for 99.9999% of catholics

my wife is still nudging me about going to this wheelchair ballroom dancing class she "gave" me as a "gift" for our anniversary years ago but it never worked out.  perhaps i dodged a bullet there!   I do miss dancing with her though...perhaps it is a mortal sin just to desire such a thing.  all aboard the despair train!

one question i have for people who are anti dancing is...what do you do at weddings

Has anyone been to a traditional Catholic wedding that did not involve dancing of any sort?  when i imagine Our Lord at the wedding at Cana I always imagine that there was dancing of some sort there?  it wouldnt be the first time my imagination was wrong, but it does seem that there are some occasions that call for dancing--the liturgy not being one of them

I hope that is not what you got from my response bringing up dancing.

I am one of those trads that did not have dancing at my wedding.  My wedding was a relatively simple affair.  Morning High Mass, followed by a reception at a the top floor of a sentimental restraunt that my family went to on special occasions.  I visited with guests, took pictures with people and ate with the Canons who came to my wedding.  It was over by about 1pm in the afternoon.

I don't want to get sidetracked on specifics to my greater point.  That yes we are going to be judged strictly, but fundamentally not specifically.
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Offline Greg

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #20 on: January 02, 2018, 08:50:15 AM »
The Gospels say a lot of things.

The day I meet a Catholic rigourist who cut his hand off to stop himself masturbating or plucked his eyes out to avoid sinful lusts, will be the day I buy a croft in the Orkneys or Siberian forest.

I have never met such a person.
 
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Offline ServusMariae

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #21 on: January 02, 2018, 08:59:27 AM »
As someone who has virtually cut all contact with everyone from the outside world & is resigned to living the domestic life at home (only to get out of grocery shopping/medical appointments/errands) this thread got me pretty intrigued, given the fact that this modern day & age indeed bears so too vast a contrast to the Age of Saints. What I'm about to share are were in my own opinion should not be taken as the 1 opinion to crush all other opinions.

Thanks to the rise of technology in the turn of the 21st century, it's ridiculously hard for Catholics to not get exposed to worldly influence through movies, music, art, etc. - let alone isolate themselves from their phones & gadgets. We see them growing cold towards matters of the Faith, the Mass being turned into a scandalous mockery with ancient liturgies destroyed. No one cares about saving their souls anymore, & religion is treated as nothing more but an accessory to their lives, not something which dictates every aspect of their actions. Sure, quotes of the Saints may come up every now & then in their news feed on social media/in the spiritual/religious books they read/websites, but these quotes are treated as no more but one-off superficially "inspirational" quotes. Of course, no one is obliged to subscribe to their writings at paranoid levels, but their lives proved so much more as they all kept their eyes peeled upon Heaven as they prayed & persevered. They serve as illustrious role models to imitate, & while each of them differed in spirituality & in charism, all of them had all but one universal aim - i.e: to lead souls to a complete & total union with God. I cannot help but agree with Arvinger that if St. John Vianney (or any other Saint) were still alive at this very moment to take a merry-go-round tour of the secular world today,  they would be more than horrified ...

A good reason as to why moral rules get enforced is because they help us to avoid near occasions of sin  (as with the case of indecent movies), yet it is a tragedy ... a very great tragedy that the average Catholic would never wish to bother with rusty laws of generations past when they have to decide on what movie to watch. (& should I mention of how N.O parishes can still screen secular movies in an attempt to analyze for hidden "Christian" messages?!)

Regardless, when it comes to dealing with the standards of the Saints (which admittedly has multiple dimensions to tackle), I think we all have to ultimately remember our identity & purpose as Christian souls - to pick up our crosses & follow Christ each & every single day of our lives. Going one way, one direction to eternal glory.

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Offline Jayne

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #22 on: January 02, 2018, 09:05:18 AM »
What the old grey haired priests at the SSPX should do is commission a census.  They should gather data on the major Trad families from 40 years ago and see what happened to them and how they turned out.  Did the frumpy, long skirt wearing mother of 8 who stopped them from attending Greg's 20th birthday bash, actually raise those children to practice?  Have they had 8 children themselves or has their upbringing left them so devoid of skills that they never got married or married late and only had 2 children and then separate beds?

Is the divorce and annulment rate higher in Jansenistic Trads or Lax-Trads ?  (Pro-rata, obviously because there are more lax-Trads).  I certainly know of some Jansenistic nutters who have appalling personal circumstances and have divorced their Catholic husbands and wives, often because they were so nutty nutbar that they drove them away..  Hutton Gibson is no exception by any means.

Our own experiences are subject to confirmation bias, but gather enough data and the truth will out.

The data would show which path, which compromise, produced the best fruit.  This argument is then resolved.  You should do whatever works.

But we would be missing the most important piece of data - the eternal destinations of all these people.  Since we do not actually know who is in heaven, hell, or purgatory, we cannot determine who has the best result.

Also, there are many other factors in how people turn out other than the influence of parents.  Adam and Eve, who had no other parent than God, chose sin.  Are you going to claim that God was a nutty nutbar who drove them away?

This is far too complex an issue to determine an answer by reasoning it out for ourselves.  Fortunately we have revelation from God on how we should live.  That is a far better guide than an over-simplified, flawed human analysis.
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Offline nmoerbeek

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #23 on: January 02, 2018, 09:05:55 AM »
Are you basing these conclusions off of your own examinations of patristic writings or off of various secondary sources?

I can't claim to have read the entire library of the Early Church Fathers, but I have examined much of the relevant portions first-hand.  My two favorite saints are St. Clement of Alexandria and St. John Chrysostom, so I would say I'm at least well-acquainted with the thought of those two particular Fathers.  I will grant that they could be outliers, but many other Fathers are frequently quoted saying much the same things that they did.  And surely, if the consensus of the Fathers was fractured on matters of strictness, the laxists would be wasting no time copiously quoting all the lax Fathers left and right.  But that's not the case.  The laxists are forced to accept the Fathers and argue from there: "well, those were different times," "you have to look at that stuff in terms of nuance and context," "the Fathers were overzealous and proto-Islamic," or "the Church says we don't have to live like that anymore."  I will grant all of this, but it's relativism.

It's true, as you have indicated, that the Early Fathers were not unanimous on every last point of strict discipline.  It's not like sheet music, where if you were to follow what one Father said it would be exactly the same as some other Father.  But what it is like is variations on a theme.  And the theme is: "be not conformed to this world," erring on the side of caution.

I don't think they would like the descriptor erring on the side of caution, but rather preferring nothing to the Love of Jesus Christ.  There is a big difference though between St. Jerome mocking women who where makeup in a letter to a widow or a virgin and you drawing the conclusion that the Church must then have become Apostate because St. Albert examined the question in detail and concluded that women could wear makeup to please their husbands. 

Many secondary works quote mine the Saints, even later Saints or they take things out of the context which they were written. 

The principle which is universal is that vanity is bad, and we will be judged for our vanity.  Even those who abstain from wearing makeup and feel the need to preach it from the roof tops can turn a lack of wearing makeup into an excuse for spiritual vanity.  This hasn't been lost, it is the same way it has always been.  When we approach Christ the first thing He tells us to do to have eternal life is to keep the commandments. 


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Offline Pon de Replay

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #24 on: January 02, 2018, 09:11:48 AM »
The Gospels say a lot of things.

The day I meet a Catholic rigourist who cut his hand off to stop himself masturbating or plucked his eyes out to avoid sinful lusts, will be the day I buy a croft in the Orkneys or Siberian forest.

I have never met such a person.

Well, now we're talking.  The gospels do say a lot of things.  "Be not conformed to the world" is open to every interpretation a human could possibly think of.  The question at hand is how the gospels are supposed to be lived out.  Either the Early Church and the Fathers got it right, or they were just needlessly blowing proto-Islamic smoke and compelling three centuries worth of believers to live way more strictly than they actually had to.  (They did not, as we know, take the passages about cutting off one's own hand or plucking out one's eye literally.  They were serious about "be not conformed to this world," however).

So Early Christianity is one of two things: it is either a dead religion, like Manichaeism, and can be recreated by anyone who wants to take those writings and follow their spirit, or it is a primitive form of Christianity that was superseded by a laxer one in the same way ancient Judaism was supplanted by Christianity.  As soon as you accept the latter, then everything is relative, and there is no reason not to accept Vatican II as superseding traditional Catholicism—Gaudium et Spes is a "counter-Syllabus."  If "results matter," then traditional Catholicism should be growing by leaps and bounds, and peeling off adherents from the Novus Ordo like Justin Beiber selling records to preteen girls, but apparently it's a tougher sell than that because, human nature being what it is, people will always prefer the lax and easy.
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Offline nmoerbeek

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #25 on: January 02, 2018, 09:14:07 AM »
The dancing, hard drinking, sinning Trads deliver the goods more often.

Results matter.

If "results matter," then traditional Catholicism itself is a failure, as it was taken down from within by modernist theologians, rainbow sash priests, and middle-aged nuns doing interpretive dance.  It has to answer for what Abp. Lefebvre called the "mass apostasy" of the hierarchy.  That's fairly small potatoes compared to "Jansenist" parents having a few kids lapse.  Parents are not said to be infallible.  Traditional Catholicism must have a fatal flaw, because it eventually lost out, too, just like so-called "Jansenism" did.  I mean, at this point, Francis is the pope.

I'm fine with the Catholic faith being little more than an intellectual assent to a creed (if that's indeed what it is), with some requisite stances on abortion, contraception, and homosexuality kept up, and from there you can dance, drink hard, and sin like a pagan.  That's fine, but that isn't what Early Christianity was.  The gospels say that a person's righteousness has to exceed that of the Scribes and the Pharisees—which is to say, that you have to do better than the people who justify their laxity with their parsing, exemptions, and legalisms.  Don't get me wrong, though, Early Christianity eventually lost in the "results matter" department itself.  That religion is dead, long having been overtaken by the spirit of the Pharisees.  The spirit of Early Christianity has only been revived in small pockets: in the Amish, Mennonites, Quakers, Russian Old Believers, and certain substrata of traditional Catholicism.  You can tell them by their women in headgear, with signs of early aging and UV damage.

The Russian Old Believers won't let a non Russian Old Believer in their house during times of the year, and you always have to eat on separate plates than what the rest of the Family uses.  You cannot even own a belt in the Amish community. Rumspringa is in no way a Christian idea let alone an early christian one. Amish and Mennoties do not believe in having consecrated Churchs, nor do they practice infant baptism.


I feel like you are relying on most peoples ignorance of these things to make a point that is not true. 
« Last Edit: January 02, 2018, 09:24:56 AM by nmoerbeek »
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Offline nmoerbeek

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #26 on: January 02, 2018, 09:20:08 AM »
The Gospels say a lot of things.

The day I meet a Catholic rigourist who cut his hand off to stop himself masturbating or plucked his eyes out to avoid sinful lusts, will be the day I buy a croft in the Orkneys or Siberian forest.

I have never met such a person.

Well, now we're talking.  The gospels do say a lot of things.  "Be not conformed to the world" is open to every interpretation a human could possibly think of.  The question at hand is how the gospels are supposed to be lived out.  Either the Early Church and the Fathers got it right, or they were just needlessly blowing proto-Islamic smoke and compelling three centuries worth of believers to live way more strictly than they actually had to.  (They did not, as we know, take the passages about cutting off one's own hand or plucking out one's eye literally.  They were serious about "be not conformed to this world," however).

So Early Christianity is one of two things: it is either a dead religion, like Manichaeism, and can be recreated by anyone who wants to take those writings and follow their spirit, or it is a primitive form of Christianity that was superseded by a laxer one in the same way ancient Judaism was supplanted by Christianity.  As soon as you accept the latter, then everything is relative, and there is no reason not to accept Vatican II as superseding traditional Catholicism—Gaudium et Spes is a "counter-Syllabus."  If "results matter," then traditional Catholicism should be growing by leaps and bounds, and peeling off adherents from the Novus Ordo like Justin Beiber selling records to preteen girls, but apparently it's a tougher sell than that because, human nature being what it is, people will always prefer the lax and easy.

The religion is not dead, it is the same in fact as what the early Fathers believed.  What detail is it that is a stumbling block?    Do you think St. Paul had to tell Christians not to go to orgies because they were all living like Hermits?  Do you think that he had to instruct them to shun people because they were wearing jewelry? (the time he did dealt with a case of open incest) Do you think their where controversies because Christians weren't committing all manner of sins? 

"Let me, however, beg of Your Beatitude...
not to think so much of what I have written, as of my good and kind intentions. Please look for the truths of which I speak rather than for beauty of expression. Where I do not come up to your expectations, pardon me, and put my shortcomings down, please, to lack of time and stress of business." St. Bonaventure, From the Preface of Holiness of Life.

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Offline Greg

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #27 on: January 02, 2018, 09:22:20 AM »
It's better that we don't mention my wedding reception.  Suffice it to say, that my mother in law got pretty drunk and she never drinks otherwise.  I didn't invite my family, as I don't think they would have coped with the riotous revelry and 24 separate Vodka toasts.  And getting a Russian visa was a big hassle back then too.  It was videoed too; if you want proof.

Even now, when we have parties, most of my family members can't cope with the Russian level of partying in the house.  At my wife's last birthday party, we almost managed to kill a Pakistani dentist by serving Barcadi 151 shots. The guests are nearly all Eastern European or working class local friends or the very posh upper class lady who runs the Latin Mass society.  They make my 20th Birthday party look like a square dance.

Anglos typically have BORING weddings. Like watching paint dry.  Best weddings I have been too are in Colombia, Russia, Georgia and Southern Italy.  Iranian weddings are fab as well so I hear.

If the drunk uncle doesn't sing Tom Jones with the fat lady and there's not some broken chairs at the end then frankly who is ever going to remember it?

If the sterile way Anglo saxons do weddings it the ideal way according to God then the Catholics of most nations are all damned.  Try finding a Catholic wedding in Sicily or The Philippines or Africa where they don't dance and drink like fish.
 
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Offline Greg

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #28 on: January 02, 2018, 09:27:16 AM »
But we would be missing the most important piece of data - the eternal destinations of all these people.  Since we do not actually know who is in heaven, hell, or purgatory, we cannot determine who has the best result.

Of course we can.  Those who are still attending the sacraments 30 years later.

Being a lax practicing Catholic is far more likely to get you to Heaven than being a lapsed Catholic.
 
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Offline Jayne

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Re: Traditional Catholics and secular culture
« Reply #29 on: January 02, 2018, 09:55:33 AM »
But we would be missing the most important piece of data - the eternal destinations of all these people.  Since we do not actually know who is in heaven, hell, or purgatory, we cannot determine who has the best result.

Of course we can.  Those who are still attending the sacraments 30 years later.

Being a lax practicing Catholic is far more likely to get you to Heaven than being a lapsed Catholic.

We do not know that for a fact.  It is quite possible that practicing Catholics are judged more strictly because we should know better or because we are being hypocrites. Perhaps a lax practicing Catholic is guilty of the sin of presumption, thinking "I can get away with my sins because I go to Mass."  Being a practicing Catholic is no guarantee of Heaven.  Meanwhile, a lapsed Catholic who repents on his deathbed might go to Heaven.  We just don't know.

God judges the heart, something that we cannot know.  In effect, you are proposing that we answer a question based on information we do not actually have.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2018, 09:57:59 AM by Jayne »
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