I was arguing with Rob, a liberal atheist friend of mine, about guilt in the modern world. Rob and I share a similar background and upbringing, which was largely Christian. He rejected that heritage, I didn’t.
Here is what Rob had to say about it:
“I think one reason that virtue signalling is so pronounced in today’s Western world is a condition of displaced guilt and deep submerged shame the western citizens generally have a lot of trouble coming to terms with. They know they have a deeply sick society,. they know the mentally sick and homeless that are left to languish and die on the streets while for the most part the wealthy just sit on their hands.”
My answer to him:
Well, that’s true, but your point of reference is too narrow. By world standards, we have much much less poverty in western countries, than the rest of the world, much more compassion than the rest of the world. We look after the mentally sick and homeless much better than the rest of the world. I hear your point of view all the time from liberals, it’s mostly white self-hate, and the phoniness of it, is it presents a picture of moral reality where the mean white rich people are uniquely evil and lacking in compassion in the world. It’s part of worldview where whites are evil, everyone else is good.
Why do I say Rob is implying white people are to blame, based on his quote? And this includes Christians, even though you didn’t mention them? Because for the past 2,000 years, Western Civilization has been very much largely white, largely Christian…at least till now. So yeah, Rob like all liberals, was proclaiming himself part of the “whites are devils” liberal worldview.
I don’t buy into that worldview.
In this liberal worldview, no comparison is made with Islam, because Rob grew up in a largely Christian and now post-Christian culture, so he judges everything by the ideas of that culture. Rob doesn’t judge by the actual evidence and reality of the rest of the world, nor the reality of the other religions, because he has no direct social and life experience with those realities, so like most white self-haters, he selectively only referencing what he knows personally, which is a Christian context, he makes a very large error of omission in commenting on reality. The error is, by leaving out context, Rob convinces himself that Christians are uniquely evil or lacking in compassion.
Here is what I exactly said to him: Not only is that not true, it is actually the opposite of the truth. I see this all the time, in the naive acceptance of immigration from the Third World, from countries with horrible human rights records, with fresh faced smiling progressive liberals, who think that without exception, anyone who is not American, not white are great and wonderful immigrants. And if you don’t believe that, we are told…then you are racist.
Well then, why are all their countries brutal shitholes, completely lacking compassion? That’s what the U.N. seems to think, when they issue appraisals of human rights around the world. And why don’t most people see it? People don’t see it because they have been brain washed by the liberal media, and people don’t see it because most people form most of their impression of the world, from direct personal experience…..which limits their perceptions, if they don’t look into it further.
Like a lot of Christians, Rob rejected Christianity for personal reasons. But Rob may have left Christianity, but Christianity never left Rob. I see this all the time in post-modernists and liberals of all sorts. Scratch under the skin of many liberals and you will find a disaffected ex-Christian. I told Rob: “Your direct personal experience was especially your early years, in a Christian context, where you were betrayed. So naturally this paints most of your perception of Christianity, history and much of the world, in a certain light. And that’s fine except it’s not true. it’s just a selective slice of reality, far from an objective look at truth, so your mind, like everyone else’s, it filters reality based on what impacted you mostly, when you were young.”
And one of the larger quirks of history, is that it is mostly white people, who write books about history. And both Christians and Jews write a lot of the history books we use, so everything is from that context. Other races simply don’t keep records of their crimes. Whites do. This leads to a perception that is inaccurate.
It reminds me of a story of an older American who fought in Vietnam. He went back to that country, so full of memories for him, and found that most younger Vietnamese were very open hearted to Americans and had no animosity. And the reason for this, is they were not taught about the Vietnam War…..so they had no memory or reason to hate Americans, since it was not taught, not part of the public consciousness.
So what anyone remembers or thinks about the world, is based on what they are taught. Generally self-hating liberal academics have taken over the university and have taught us, to hate ourselves. It’s time people start seeing through this mind-control and manipulation.
This applies to Rob and myself and anyone, who need to think about how your experiences are formed, in personal experience….and how they are maintained over time……they become stronger or weaker, in time. And it’s purely subjective, what you think of them. Someone like myself, who lived through much the same era as Rob and much the same general social context, but had a positive experience of Christianity, such as I generally did, filters reality to make all Christian experience good….because it was for me. Everyone is a slave to our early perception of the world, and our opinions were formed long ago, by those social lenses and direct experiences…..then it gets manipulated and molded by education and propaganda. Free your mind, to think about who or what, is forming your perceptions of reality, and ask: Is it true? How do I know that? So then how can I say mine is true? I can’t. How can Rob say, his is true? He can’t.
I said this to Rob: “You mention displaced guilt and deep submerged shame”…..and how hard it is for Westerners to come to terms with that. Again, Rob leaves out so much. What he leaves out, is contained in the assumption behind that statement about guilt and shame. The assumption he leaves out, is the assumption that other people non-Christian people must be more moral than Christians. How do I justify that assertion? …I would say that 99.9% of all the guilt that liberal post-modernists heap upon the world, is directed to white Christians. Look around, you’ll see that’s true. Think about that. If all your criticism is towards white Christians, it means you hate them, as a group. It also means, that implied is the assumption, that other groups by comparison, because you never criticize them, they must be pure and without blemish.
I told him, “Rob, your statement assumes a Christian set of beliefs operating as the basis of your judgement. Your statement assumes, that those Christian beliefs are universal, and are the lens by which to judge moral action. Your statement assumes that those Christian beliefs are universally adhered to, by the rest of humanity, and so it must be fair somehow, to judge Christians, through this lens.
Rob, that’s entirely baloney. None of that is true. There is no reason for Christian notions of compassion to be accepted as an ethical basis of society, nor are those Christian ideals necessarily self-evident, nor are they by any means universally accepted as de facto norms of the human race. In fact, we live in a post-Christian context, and those ideals you judge Christians on, were in fact brought to the world by Christians, are based on Christian teaching, and they are largely disappearing in time, because the ethical basis of those ideals, the underpinning is in fact Christianity itself.
And liberal and post-modernists ideas of compassion themselves, historically have roots in Christian thought, since Christian thought dominated European culture, for so long.
Rob, even though you say you are an atheist, I’m not buying it, because I judge people by their behavior, which tends to show what people actually believe. People act out, what they believe, and you act out and espouse Christianity, to the core of you. And then paradoxically, you proclaim to despise the very thing, you act out, and you hold up for reference and for ideal, the very thing you say you despise. Then Rob, you proclaim to other people, to follow an ethical ideal that you say that you despise, even while you act it out in belief, thought and action, in the real world.
That’s pretty screwed up. Rob.”
My point is, for liberals and post-modernists and progressives is, you can’t have Christianity disappear and assume those ideals will still stick around on their own. They were not there before Christianity, they did not exist in non-Christian societies before Christianity, so why would you expect them to stick around, if Christianity fades away?
Jordan Peterson has made the same point about Sam Harris, who judges everything from Christian norms, while wholesale rejecting Christianity, wishing it would go away, and not believing in God. As a package, that set of beliefs is foolish and lacks both self-awareness and lacks accurate awareness of historical trends regarding thought.
This all reminds me of a true story of a Christian British Colonel in India, in the 1800s. He came across a group of Indian men, where were about to light an Indian woman on fire, in a suttee…a very very long Indian practice of roasting and burning Indian women alive on a fire, whose husband had died, so no one was around to take care of her economically, since he was dead. So the people responded and wanted to kill the Indian woman, since no one had the compassion to look after her.
The British colonels, a Christian, violently objected. The men of India responded it was their cultural custom, to do so, and their customs must be honored. The British colonel replied “You are free to carry out your customs of the suttee. We British have a custom, where we kill men who try to burn women alive. You are free to carry out your custom, and we are free to carry out ours.”
And that sort of cruelty was much the norm, for all of human history. The only exception to that was the Christian era, especially after Christians for the most part, were the ones who invented the modern world and invented science, which gave humans the technical means to look after the weak and the unfortunate…and that Christian compassion they used to do things like end slavery and bring in welfare and set up hospitals, all of that was morally grounded in Christianity.
Rob’s assumption about the supposed special evil of Christianity, is a load of nonsense and is now taught at university, where it infects the white population in self-hatred. To be educated now is to hate yourself, if you are white….at least that self-hatred is what what fools buy into. Those who look beyond that foolishness quickly figure out…humans are generally cruel, and it took a lot of effort to get them to slow down in that brutality. Lack of compassion is the overwhelming norm in human history. Compassion is the exception in human history, not the rule. And that includes all races, not whites especially. If anything, whites are the first to break some of that cruelty. For that, they are condemned….no good deed goes unpunished. To buy into the liberal/post-modernist/progressive vision of history, is to buy into a vision of reality that ignores the cruelty of most people, of all races, for all of history. To do so means embracing a vision of the human race which is largely an illusion. It’s the illusion that, were it not for whites, all other races would be benign. And that vision is the basis of multi-culturalism….very naive. If multi-culturalism is to succeed, and I wish it to, it must be grounded in reality, not white self-hatred, which is doomed to inevitable failure. This multi-cultural vision of a compassionate human race is in actuality largely a perhaps unrealistic ethical ideal, foisted on the world by a Christian culture, which had invented science. It bears no resemblance to evolutionary reality, which was largely brutal and without mercy.
While humans have the evolved capacity for compassion, it was seldom socially developed in society. And I think Nietzsche, who hated compassion, hated Christianity, would agree with me.
Our current views on compassion, which Rob reflects, are as much a creation, an invention, as the invention of the light-bulb. Both are cultural creations, that draw on nature. Neither are the way things have tended to be, but are similarly just human inventions, and not natural laws.
This liberal/post-modernist/progressive view of things, rests and originates on a very curious and odd quirk of human perception forming:
I call it the “No good deed goes unpunished” concept?
One of the strange things about human beings, is how no good deed seems to go unpunished. You’d think, helping people, which sounds like a good thing, would lead people to be happy and grateful. Not necessarily true. Give a man a dollar, and he’ll generally complain, why didn’t you give me two dollars? As people are given more, they raise their standards and expect more, and are generally ungrateful for what they have been given already, and they ignore how it got there, and who benefited them…..which really pisses me off, when no good deed goes unpunished.
But why does this happen? ….a quirk of human perception:
Let me give you an example of this quirky human perception forming:
In my younger days, I met a man who was born in 1900, in a small farm house. He watched much of the modern world pop into existence, in his lifetime. Starting out in horse and buggy, he was very much so amazed by airplanes…..and many other modern inventions. That amazement was because the airplane was literally invented in his lifetime, so he and others in that era experienced them within that social context…..of complete newness….and he had something to compare airplanes to: no airplanes.
I had a similar, but less inspiring experience as a child. Growing up in a primitive rural setting, I used outdoor outhouse toilet in the cold of winter, and since that experience of frozen butt-cheeks, I have never forgot how wonderful indoor plumbing is. Plumbers are amazing people who have done more to end human mystery, than doctors, in my opinion. But people who always had indoor plumbing assume this is just the way the world is….so they judge everything on the basis of that….and that’s bull-crap, if you’ll pardon the contextual expression….for most of time, there was no such thing as indoor plumbing, so modern toilets, are a modern marvel.
Why does this happen?…a quirk of human perception forming:
Humans are very context-driven, in their perceptions. Their views of reality are extremely over-whelmed by what is proximal to them, to their experiences and their senses. This proximal view of reality becomes their accepted view of reality, and it takes great effort to take them out of that personal subjective narrative and to see a larger picture. And this personal narrative, is often writ large, and foisted onto the world, as it is done in post-modernist teaching and feminist teaching. It’s quickly assumed that the new context is the norm, by which to judge things…so they quickly raise their standards once they have the new things. I believe that is the basis of this behavior.
This sort of mental distortion of reality happens in feminism all the time: As a group, there is no more historically clueless and ungrateful group of people in the world. Of all the sacrifice men make for them, of all the countless ways men have made their lives better, they are willfully ignorant and blind. Invent indoor plumbing, cure diseases that cut the lives of previous women short, invent machinery to end hunger, make them safe and warm and give them jobs, and they complain about “Air conditioning oppression”….Instead of gratitude, they display hostility at times, out-right hatred of men at times, then write books about their hatred of men, and teach that hatred to young women at university, to indoctrinate them in the cult of man hating. 8 minutes to angry man-hating lesbian comment.
Humans are context-driven and judge everything based on what they already know and directly experience….we are generally oblivious to all else. What is central to you, and your perceptions, is peripheral to all others….that’s the way reality is organized. Rob experienced Christianity as a youth, had a negative experience, so bases his whole perception of reality, on that initial experience. That’s a pretty small and subjective view of reality…..and that’s the very natural human tendency. I’m no different in that respect, I just have a different context, than most people. Most people, they assume, how the world is now, that is how the world is, and always was. Total baloney…..and it leads to massive misconceptions of reality, and ingratitude.
Why does this happen?….a quirk of human perception forming:
Humans are very context-driven, in their perceptions. Their views of reality are extremely over-whelmed by what is proximal to them, to their experiences and their senses. This proximal view of reality becomes their accepted view of reality, and it takes great effort to take them out of that personal narrative and to see a larger picture.
Comedian Louis C.K. has a comedy bit, about human perception forming, how quirky it can be, how it can lead to distortions in perception, about reality, because we as humans, are so much about the personal narrative, over all else: