News+and+politics religion philosophy the cynic librarian: Racial Suicide, Church, Aretz, and God

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Racial Suicide, Church, Aretz, and God

Pat Robertson thinks that Europe is committing racial suicide. Following recent data on Europe's declining birth rate, Robertson and other Xtians see this as a threat to Christianity. Their theory works in the following way: if Europeans can't procreate then other ethnic groups will fill the vacuum left over by the Europeans. For Robertson and these other writers, this usually means Moslems. In this way, the thinking goes, as the race goes, so goes the culture. And as these Xtians think, along with the biomass go the culture and by extension the religion. ...

I don't know whether the data supports Robertson's view or not. I'm quite willing to believe that it does. My questions about their views concern the notion that as biological mass goes so goes a religion.

Robertson is echoing the views of others that run along the following lines: European civilization is the product of Christianity. This civilization has brought immense benefits and accomplishments to human kind: science, philosophy, democracy, and art. If we lose this civilization, we will lose the religion. Because it's Christianity that has given birth to the culture and that nurtures it, then we will also lose Christianity.

There are numerous assumptions here that might be questioned and countered. I think the major assumption is that Christianity has a biological component that if lost means that the religion itself is lost. This view is similar to the notion of election that Israel, Hinduism, or Islam advocate: our religion is us, our nation, the blood and generations that support us and guarantee our existence for the future.

This concept of religion recalls the Beast that Simone Weil wrote about. Weil identified the Beast not only with the Roman Empire but any nation, state or tribe that divinized itself through blood, doctrine, and land. During her own time, fascism was on the rise. To promote its evil ideology, fascism called into play the themes of blood, race, motherland, Germanic culture and the eternal destiny associated with these.

Hitler had not taken his theory of the Nazi mother-land just from the old Roman dream of world domination, according to Weil. There was a messianic and apocalyptic side to it that Weil recognizes as coming from the Jewish notion of being elected by God to bring enlightenment to the rest of the world.

Of course, everyone recognizes how closely Robertson and similar Xtian evangelicals align Christianity with the state of Israel. In this Xtian mythology, the founding of the state of Israel has set in motion the end times foretold by Jewish and Christian prophets, according to this view. (Of course, you could say that Robertson is hedging his bets here: if these are the end times, why do we need to care about race, culture or otherwise? I mean we'll be gone soon, right?)

The Jewish biblical and Talmud scholar, Jacob Neusner, has suggested an intriguing idea. Xtians must embrace Judaism, says Neusner, if they hold true to their church dogmatics. Noting similarities between various Xtian church dogmatics, not simply evangelical, Neusner writes:

If Christians take the Hebrew Scriptures to their height," he said, "they will find that Judaism embodies those imperatives, the commandments of the Old Testament, in a way Christianity does not. [In "Scholar of Judaism, Professional Provocateur," New York Times, Published April 13, 2005]
Robertson's theories about the relationship between the race, culture, and Xtianity, fit Neusner's comments perfectly. What is the difference between the two religions, anyway?

As long as we are winning wars in Xtendom's name, beating back the Moslem hordes, shoring up the foundations of the Xtian culture temple, what is it that we are missing? We just need to get people to procreate more so that we can have more Xtian soldiers and fill the baptismal registries so that we show that Xtianity is alive and kicking and growing.

The new Millennium means a new ad campaign to re-indoctrinate Europe so that the City of God on earth will once more reign. And we all know that Xtian culture means the survival of the race, so we need to fill the pews, procreate more babies, become priests/preachers/pastors/deacons/nuns, etc.

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