Category Archives: Delusion

How Will a Church of the Isles Be Created?

Introduction

So far there have been, or there are under way, four attempts to create a semi-autonomous, autonomous or even autocephalous Local Orthodox Church in the British Isles and Ireland. These attempts have been or are, for various reasons which we shall look at below, doomed to failure. This is why these attempts have never advanced further than fantasies. For example, there has even been basic ignorance of the name for such a future Church by foreign bishops. Some of them do not understand that the term ‘Great Britain and Ireland’ excludes the Isle of Man, the Channel Islands etc. Others even refuse to understand that the term ‘the British Isles’ excludes Ireland. Yet others have no concept of the countries which make up Western Europe. Basic geographical and historical ignorance appear to be commonplace. How will a semi-autonomous Church of the Isles (a possible reality, but only as part of a future Autocephalous Church of Western Europe) NOT be created? Let us look at the four tried and failed models.

  1. The Elitist Model

Already in the 1970s, as I remember well, there was an attempt to create an independent, in fact, semi-Orthodox, Church. This was a Parisian model, as its origin was among Saint Petersburg aristocrats in exile there. It was supported, at most, by a few hundred generally rather effete, upper-class and disincarnate intellectuals, who followed almost Buddhist or Hindu guru personality cults and pursued a pseudo-mystical, esoteric ‘Way’. The ethos was clearly ecumenical and modernistic, without roots in the Christian Tradition. This was not surprising as the original Saint Petersburg aristocrats had lived far from the Church, being more interested in philosophy than in Christ. This attempt failed because it was personality-driven, so disincarnate and abstract that it even dismissed ordinary people. Indeed, in 1975, one of its leading ideologues actually told me that ‘there is no such thing as ordinary people’!

  1. The Establishment Model

This model was put forward in the 1990s by Anglicans and ex-Anglicans, who were nostalgic for the Anglican Establishment. Only formally Orthodox, as they had been received into Orthodox Christianity without training or preparation, they wanted a clericalist ‘British Orthodox Church’, that is, an imitation of State-run Anglicanism. This ignored the reality that the mass of Orthodox Christians in the British Isles and Ireland are Eastern European immigrants who have nothing in common with the British and Anglican Establishment, as nor for that matter do most native Orthodox. This attempt failed because it was not interested in Holiness, but in the British State and the worldly advantages which that State could offer. It was a top-down project of the clericalist few over the people.

  1. The Ethnic Model

This is the present Phanariot model, with bishops in London, Edinburgh and Cardiff. This model is intent on becoming a racially exclusive sub-department of the Vatican, designed only for Greeks and people who want to be ‘Greeks’. Lacking an Orthodox Christian and so multinational ethos, it is based on compromises which reduce the Christian Faith to a nationalist project.

  1. The Psychological Model

This refers to escapist forms of Christianity from somewhere else and from sometime else. It appeals to those who from insecurity or an inferiority complex need to cling to and act out something different, making it into an exclusive and self-justifying ideology. It seems to forget that Orthodox Christianity was never exclusive, but the faith of illiterate Galilean fishermen, who became the apostles through the Holy Spirit, not through illusions. The psychological model is intensely delusional, narrow, rigid, arrogant, pharisaical, bureaucratic and psychological, if not psychopathological. It can attract extremists attached to ultra-conservative ideologies, even, as recently, two Nazis, who were received into the Church through extreme naivety. This model is anti-local, anti-now, anti-missionary and anti-Holy Spirit.

All these attempts have failed or will fail. Why?

The Elitist Model failed because it proclaims that the Church is not One, but is esoteric.

The Establishment Model failed because it denies Holiness, replacing it with a version of the purely manmade British Establishment.

The Ethnic Model will fail because it denies the Catholicity of the Church, limiting Her to one ethnic group.

The Psychological Model will fail because it denies the Apostolicity of the Church, limiting Her to one type of unhealthy human psychology.

Conclusion

What are the criteria for a Local Church? Any new Local Church must be:

One – united, not divisive.

Holy – putting the Kingdom of God above all the kingdoms of men.

Catholic – part of the universal Church.

Apostolic – faithful to the Apostolic Tradition.

Any Local Church must keep the Faith, but also be open, as She is both Local and Universal.

On Fake Orthodoxy

At last a Metropolitan of the Russian Orthodox Church Is in agreement, word for word, with what so many of us have been saying for decades!

   A CHEAP IMITATION OF WORLD ORTHODOXY IS BEING BUILT BEFORE OUR EYES

Recent events in Cyprus bear witness to a fact that is unfortunately no longer in doubt: Pan-Orthodox unity no longer exists. Moreover, the Orthodox world is facing a new and very dangerous schism. Its basis is the thirst for individual power, and its main tool is the willingness to ignore the canons, the truth, and the conscience in the process of achieving this goal.

A defective and malicious copy of world Orthodoxy is now being built before our eyes. In this parallel system, such aspects as the perversion of the canons, the legalization of schismatics, concelebration with people who have no valid ordination, and the trampling of the conciliar format of Church governance are considered natural and normal.

That is, everything that until only recently seemed unthinkable and impossible.

But behind this reality, new landmarks are already looming. We are talking about the further erosion of Orthodox ecclesiology, open concelebration with representatives of other confessions, agreement with the imposition of LGBT culture, and so on.

Do the leaders who are guiding their Churches into this cheap imitation of world Orthodoxy understand that it will be simply impossible to avoid further decline? After all, if you’re already jumping into the abyss, you certainly won’t be able to stop on the way down.

Do the leaders of these Churches understand that taking part in big geopolitical and political games has its price? For example, will they be able to refuse certain external forces if they demand that they guarantee Church support for the promotion of LGBT interests? Will they have enough courage to say “no?” I doubt it very much, given how some primates have already caved on the question of recognizing the schism.

Therefore, we must speak of the crisis taking place in world Orthodoxy not as some kind of confrontation between the “Greek” and “Slavic” worlds, or as a battle for ecclesiastical administrative boundaries.

Everything is much more complicated and more acute. In fact, a great schism is taking place, which is dragging more and more Local Churches into the funnel of this system that runs parallel to the real Orthodox world.

That is why the essence of the current crisis can be reduced to the struggle of those who want to create their own comfortable version of Orthodoxy that corresponds to their own interests with those who want to remain faithful to Orthodoxy.

This should be understood by every cleric and every believer in any Orthodox Church, and on the basis of this understanding they must make their choice—to remain among those faithful to God or to compromise with their conscience and become a member of the imitation of Orthodoxy.

Metropolitan Anthony (Pakanich) of Boryspol and Brovary
Translation by Jesse Dominick

Vesti.ua

12/1/2020

Spirituality or Moralism?

I spoke recently to a Romanian parishioner who had lived for a very long time in the Middle East and married a charming man, originally a Muslim. Taking him to a certain Romanian elder, who is still alive, she expected whom she supposed to be a very conservative elder to condemn her for marrying a Muslim and berate the Muslim for being such. Instead the elder came out and warmly embraced the Muslim and treated him as a brother. It was not long before the Muslim had joined the Orthodox Church. The story illustrates the old saying that you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.

The point is that the Spiritual is not conservatism. The Spiritual is the Tradition, the ever-renewed Inspiration of the Holy Spirit over the millennia, which is quite different from conservatism. Indeed, it is precisely in the absence of the Spiritual that conservatism, with its killing moralism and dead ritualism, takes over. Moralism is a sign of the end of the living, not of life. Both modernists and conservatives (‘traditionalists’) are moralists, because neither has the Spiritual, both lack Love, the very thing that they both claim in their self-delusion to have.

We saw it in the time of Christ with the Pharisees with their censorious judgementalism. We saw it with the Calvinistic Puritans, so intolerant that they could find nowhere to live in Europe and so had to go to America, where they slaughtered the native people and hunted innocent women to death as witches. We saw it with the Jesuits who preached hatred in the Name of God. We saw it with the Zoe and Sotir brotherhoods in Greece, who turned so many against the Church. We saw it with psychopaths and fanatics who tried to turn the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia into a mean and nasty sect. None of them knew that it is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.

Moralists always exploit the naïve and weak, manipulating them and making them feel guilty for not being ‘conservative’ enough. They lecture and berate others, who have experience of the inner life. This is all because the moralists themselves have no inner life. And because they have no inner life, they pre-judge and condemn all others. And they pre-judge and condemn because they have no compassion and love for human weakness, only hardness of heart which destroys both themselves and others. Moralism is spiritual death; only the Spiritual gives Life, for only the Holy Spirit is the Giver of Life.

The End of the Western Delusion: 1990-2020: History Begins Again

Since Protestantism denied any sort of collective ‘Church’, it was always concerned with ‘personal’, individual salvation. Therefore it was precisely out of this curious understanding of salvation, that we are not saved together, that modern Western individualism grew up. For as time passed and Protestantism degenerated into Secularism in the revolution that began in the 1960s, individualism rapidly turned into self-interest, self-indulgence, self-flattery, ‘the feel good factor’ and infantilism. This is ‘personal salvation’ according to the individualistic, atheist gospel of Secularism. Everyone is their own god – the ultimate millennial result of the filioque.

Thus, after the Fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989 and then the collapse of the rest of the Marxist nightmare, the self-appointed task of Western ideologues assigned themselves a task. Sure that their ideology of individualism, ‘the free market’, had triumphed, it was simple. Under the delusional camouflage of their slogan of individualism, ‘freedom and democracy’, in other words, do whatever you want, they would conquer the rest of the world.

So they tried to mop up the remains of Imperial Russia (not much left there after 75 years of Western Marxism, they thought), finish off primitive Islam and stride forward, confident that China and India would also fall into their laps like so much ripe fruit. ‘History had ended’, so claimed the bullying triumphalists with their ‘The West is Best over the Rest’.

Now they would conquer the world through the crowd-pleasing, truly populist, idea of selfishness, backed up as usual, of course, with the usual Western organised violence. This hubris was nothing but the old pagan Roman bread and circuses, revamped as materialist consumerism and the Soft Power of Hollywood and modern music. The masses would, like zombies, swallow all this, and agree to be bombed by NATO and exploited by Western companies from the US and the EU, their heads zombified by Rambo, Michael Jackson, Spiderman, Lady Gaga and any other nonsense that the West could produce.

Only it was not as simple as that. Actually, not everybody is a selfish Western ideologue and will agree to anything, just because they have been offered flattery and a million dollars. Some people have principles, some people are not selfish, some people have values greater than the dollar, some people know that ‘freedom and democracy’ are myths. Like the early Christians in the Colosseum, some people still believe in greater things than vulgar consumer goods and Hollywood, they believe in collective, not individual, values, values like historical tradition, patriotism and national identity. And, just like our spiritual forebears, the early Christians, we do not fear death. Even under the threat of coronavirus, whether manmade or natural.

That people may believe in more than bread and circuses and do not live by bread alone has been demonstrated in recent years even inside the Western world, with the rise of what the venal elitists of the snobbish media condescendingly call ‘populism’, for example, as in Brexit and Trump. However, long before this, outside the Western world (the West is always spiritually backward), we already saw resistance to Western Secularism.

For example, although Russia fell into the hands of a drunken Western puppet in the 1990s and although his Harvard advisors created mass hunger, abortion, alcoholism and suicide, Russia has since raised itself up to sovereignty. It now has a certain dignity and we see there the long and slow return to national identity and the traditional Russian defence of peoples whom the West has tried to wipe off the map, for example, in Ossetia and Syria. As for the Muslim world, it too fought back after the anti-Muslim Wars against Iraq in 1991 and 2003, where the West, despite its mass brainwashing propaganda, disastrously lost the last shreds of any moral authority. The world saw that the only weapons of mass destruction were those that the Western Powers massacred Iraqis with.

Historically, the West had no success in spreading its ideologies of Catholicism and Protestantism in Russia, India, Japan or China. Even after the collapse of Communism, when it sent out its evangelical missionaries to the former Soviet Union, bribing them with free English lessons, all they harvested were a few unstable, uprooted and neurotic souls.

Even successes in Latin America, the Philippines and Africa were very limited: Catholicism and Protestantism there are both anti-secular and have very little to do with wishy-washy, happy-clappy, baby-boomer, self-indulgent, infantile Western Catholicism and Protestantism, which today are simply forms of Secularism, with as much spiritual content as dishwater. The Non-Western world will accept consumer goods and Western Soft Power, its films and music, for amusement’s sake, but nothing on a deep and serious level. The elite may have its traitors, but the people remain loyal to their own age-old Civilisation and culture beneath the surface.

Some may point to the contemporary ‘successes’ of American evangelicals in China, who claim 120 million converts. This of course is nonsense. Just as in Japan, South Korea or Thailand, the only ones in China who ‘convert’ to Protestantism do so because they want to be rich ‘like Americans’ from the land of consumerism and Hollywood. For why are the Americans rich? Because Americans are Evangelicals, ‘God has blessed them’. By adopting the American religion, they too will be ‘blessed by God’ and so be rich. At least that is the myth that is peddled to the simple, ignoring the tens of millions of dirt poor, homeless, alcoholics and drug addicts in the real America, let alone the Gospel call to ascetic poverty and Christ’s statement that Mammon (i. e. the dollar) and God are irreconcilable opposites. All this is just American imperialism.

Today’s Western Secularism is as unexportable as yesterday’s Western religion was unexportable.

For instance, I remember a BBC journalist (and spy) declaring to me that Orthodoxy in Russia is unimportant because fewer than 5% of Russians go to Church. This statistic is true, but he had totally missed the point. Orthodoxy, i.e. Christianity, is important in Russia not because of such a statistic but because it is the Civilisational underpinning of Russian culture. Regardless of how many people go to Church, all (except the elite of English-speaking thieves/oligarchs/traitors who consort with Western journalists and spies) have Orthodox (i.e. Christian) values in some sphere or another. And those values, of the majority, are not those of elitist LGBT Western Secularism and never will be.

The Gospel of Western self-indulgence only works among the corrupt elite. The puppets, traitors and crooks, appointed by the West to run Latin America (Haiti, Cuba, Pinochet, Nicaragua), Greece (the colonels), the Philippines (Marcos), the Ukraine, Lithuania, Montenegro, the Phanar etc, are precisely that. The West has only one technique, corrupt the worst elements in the country and then appoint them as the ruling elite by force and they will allow Western companies to asset-strip the countries involved.

How will this Western perversion be defeated?

Whether the fight is against pseudo-Christian Western religion or one of the forms of Secularism which evolved from it, be it atheist Communism or consumerist Capitalism, there is only one value which can stand up to Western Secularism. And this is not xenophobia and crude nationalism, evil Stalinism in the case of Russia – even among some who claim to be Orthodox!; this is not Maoism in the case of China, where the ruling ideology long ago stopped being Chinese Communism and became Chinese Nationalism, upheld by savage Capitalism; and this is not Islamism in the case of the Muslim world, an Islamism created from the outrage of repeated Western invasions of and interference in Muslim Iran, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria.

What then is the only value that can stand up to Western Secularism?

It is God, the One Universal Reality and Ideal. Not the false Western god, the idol made in the imagination and image of Western ideologues. The real God is not made in our image, we are made in His image. The Holy Spirit comes from God, not from Western man, nor for that matter from the Islamic god of Mohammed, but from the real God the Father, from Whom alone proceeds Holiness and Truth. This was revealed by Christ, not in Europe, but in Asia, of which Christ was in His human nature a native.

Just because the American elite has little understanding of history, culture, language and faith, it thinks it can impose its individualistic self-indulgence throughout the world. Insulated from reality in their bubble, it underestimates other people. Not all are as selfish as those ideologues. Most of the world has greater and stronger values than the individualistic self, it has a collective value, a belief in its own national identity and destiny, culture and history, values that go beyond space and time, beyond the here and now, back into history and into the future, a Civilisation that is greater than the self and goes on to eternity. Not the Western delusion, but God. Here is the answer. Thirty years have passed since Western ideologues began to claim that the West had triumphed, that History had ended. In reality, History is beginning again. For many around the world the West is not Best. In the age of coronavirus the West is Pest.