How Kevin MacDonald’s new article relates to Russell Moore’s cuckery:

Alt-Right folks who dislike Christianity often cite Christian theology’s legitimization of guilt as crippling to whites worldwide.

In this view, the modern cult of “white guilt” is simply the secular form of Christian guilt, with gibs for minorities as a collective act of penance. While not literally believing in pagan gods, anti-Christian Alt Righters harken back to the days of paganism as a time of spiritual freedom.  Pagans, it is said, ruthlessly pursued their self-interest without reference to superstitious notions of sin and guilt.

A Christian counter-argument: the corruption of the church in the West shares a common cause with all of our other corrupt institutions, so why single the church out as a cause rather simply a symptom of our decline?  Wouldn’t it be simpler to say something terrible happened to Western man, and it infected all of our institutions, religious and non-religious? This argument might be right, but it misses the point.

The pagan Alt-Right is correct to single out the church, and surprisingly, such strong disapproval of cucked church institutions is consistent with Christian theology.  Christ said that false teachers would be better served by having a millstone cast around their neck and cast into the sea compared to the wrath of God stirred up by their deceptions. Paul said that false teachers of religion will be subject to a higher standard of judgment, since they not only deceive themselves, but also others. Christians can agree with the pagan, secular Alt-Right that the Christian teachers who push a cucked version of the faith deserve more condemnation than secular anti-West voices. In other words, Russell Moore is worse than Michael Moore.

The secular Alt-Right and non-cucked Christians can agree that deception under cover of religion is worse than other forms of deception, because the essence of religious abuse is to hijack the rational thinking processes and utilize the fear of God’s wrath as a means of coercing someone into a particular belief. When Russell Moore implies Christians who vote for Trump might be hell-bound, his words are much more coercive than Michael Moore ranting about white privilege. Besides the religious coercion involved, Moore appears to be one of us, a conservative Christian from Mississippi, and as such the masses of Christians are less likely to think critically about his message, whereas Michael Moore is a known enemy whose words are automatically discounted. Russell Moore and his ilk are not only religious deceivers, but also an enemy within, traitors to their own people, a threat much more serious and deserving of moral condemnation than the obvious enemy without.

If Alt Right Christians and Alt Right pagans can agree that religious deceivers represent a particularly loathsome Trojan Horse within the West, what can we say about the pagans’ idea that Christianity is the source of guilt within Western societies? Pagan Alt-Righters say that our people were an ancient race of Nietzschean supermen bolding conquering and pursuing their self-interest; that a little inconsequential tribal god named Yahweh was invented by the Israelites as a projection of their own obsession with sex, uncleanness, and sin; that Christianity was a Hellenized version of this same Jewish cult that carried the virus of sin and guilt into the Western mind. Until recently, I don’t know that I had a good answer to this argument, other than to straightforwardly disagree and say that sin and guilt are real, and there is a God with universal standards, whom we are to obey. In other words, I could only make a faith-based argument, as this subject bled into the territory where Christianity becomes more of an intuition, further than reason can take us.

That is, until yesterday. Perusing my latest copy of The Occidental Quarterly, I was reading Kevin MacDonald’s article on the origins of the Indo-Europeans, and I was struck by a passing reference. MacDonald reports the phenomenon of pre-Christian, pagan European chieftains who had their priests kill them as a human sacrifice to the gods, to appease their wrath in times of military defeat, bad harvests, or other situations where the gods seemed mightily displeased. What kind of Nietzschean does that? This triggered a cascade of thoughts about the pagan world, where human sacrifice, animal sacrifice, sexual asceticism (e.g. Roman vestal virgins) and other practices were thought to appease the gods for man’s sinful acts. The urge and drive to sacrifice to appease for sin was a universal human instinct before Abraham and Yahweh enter history as a specific faith for a specific people.

The secular Alt-Right is absolutely correct when they point to the idea of sin and guilt as a huge problem. It is not, however, a result of Christianity but something inherent in man. You can still be secular and believe this – you would just need to admit that sin and guilt are universal human afflictions, some artifact of our evolution, not simply a cultural artifact of Christianity. Clearly, sin and guilt need some legitimate outlet, like other human drives. Uncontrolled, it will strike out randomly in destructive ways, like the cult of white guilt which serves as a quasi-religion to spiritually empty, affluent Westerners. In fact, if Christianity didn’t exist, we would almost have to invent something like it.

Think about what Christianity does functionally: it replaces archaic systems, some, simply messy, like animal sacrifice, and others truly horrific like the infant sacrifice practiced by Near Eastern pagans. Christianity says God came to Earth and made one sacrifice that suffices for all sin and guilt, forever. This sacrifice is memorialized in the eminently civil ritual of the bread and the cup, and remission of sins is ritualized through the simple use of ordinary water in baptism. If you wanted to take man’s sin and guilt instincts and channel them into a benevolent form, you would have to invent something like Christianity. Christianity, however, still preserves all of the upside of the sin instinct. Basic morality like not stealing, not murdering, not lying in court, not committing adultery, not being envious, etc. are necessary practices to build the sort of high-trust, highly advanced, specialized societies Europeans desire. You have to admit that an earnest Christian is less likely to put melamine in the baby formula than a Chinese pagan. Sociopathic behavior by high-time-preference people is efficiently behaviorally balanced with some sort of belief in eternal torment and punishment for heinous acts. It’s ugly and inelegant, in a way, but any religious system has to account for the full range of human depravity.

One more observation: by relieving people of the burden of sin and guilt, and the uncertainty associated with the mercurial pagan gods, Christianity allowed its adherents more freedom to pursue their destiny as a people. The most highly refined form of Christianity, that of free grace salvation, emerged in Northern Europe after the Reformation. Fully freed from any residual guilt, the mightiest empires emerge from these Northern European countries who conquer the world, in their view with God’s approval. The most powerful empire of all time, the British, was an amalgamation of the high ritual of Catholicism, but the free grace of the Reformation, all under the umbrella of a King as head of government and church. This Empire saw itself as explicitly doing God’s work in bringing other peoples into subjection, and represents possibly the most purely “Nietzschean” society, the race of supermen upon whose lands the sun never set.

I’m not here to make a utilitarian argument for Christianity, though I think one can obviously be made. I simply point out a number of interesting and unlikely coincidences:

  • The universal sin and guilt drive of man, not indigenous to Judea, which results from man’s moral instinct but can express itself in very destructive ways, from human sacrifice to white guilt.
  • Christianity’s elegant repackaging of this instinct into a one-time sacrifice and a ritualized, civilized system of memorializing the sacrifice, while also creating an imperative for the moral behavior necessary to a high trust, advanced society.
  • The strange coincidence of Christianity’s central truth claim: God came to Earth and the Jews murdered Him.
  • This little vignette prophetically foreshadows the rise of Christian Europe as the most powerful civilization of all time, along with its perennial enemy.
  • The juxtaposition of Christian Europe both being the most powerful civilization of all time, but also the most humane and just. Power, justice, and mercy happened to combine in history, a paradox mirrored, and mocked by pagans, in the Christian faith itself.

These could all be coincidences, or they could be the fingerprints of something else. What you can’t say, based on history, is that Christianity created the problem of guilt and sin. Arguably, it solved it.

2 thoughts on “Guilt, Paganism & Christianity

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