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Guest post: At an Orthodox Jewish Wedding, by ElectricAngel

05 Jan

Today we have a guest post from ElectricAngel:

I am clearly a goy. Not just because I don’t know Hebrew, or wonder why there is no cheese on the condiment tables. No, that’s obvious from my uncovered head, glinting without the gratis yarmulke from the check-in desk to cover it. But then, as I learned from my friend, I still might not be considered properly Jewish.

All around me are men wearing black hats, long coats, and black pants and white shirts. These, then, are the Orthodox Jews. As I was told by my friend, they do not like their children to marry Reform or Conservative Jews, as these latter are much less likely to keep kosher, and are more likely to assimilate and lose their Jewishness in a larger culture. Ironically, he tells me, ordinary Orthodox Jews are considered too liberal for the Ultra-Orthodox, Hasidic Jews who live in the next county over.

My friend is a beta, through and through, a very smart, funny, short, meek man. He has invited me to his daughter’s wedding. The daughter is a star, bright, deferential to her father who she clearly adores, positively beaming towards him in the few times I have seen them together before tonight. If she is to look like her mother in 20-odd years, her husband will be pleased, for my friend’s wife is a pleasant woman, good looking for her age, with hair for this occasion demurely covered, as is the fashion for the married Orthodox woman, whose crowning glory is for her husband’s eyes only. Clearly, again, the star of that couple, she nevertheless submits to his leadership in all things.

My wife and I are somewhat at a loss in the hall. We do not understand most of what goes on, or the customs. I cannot locate my friend at first, in the forest of black-hatted men, so we settle into noshing before the ceremony. The hors d’ouvres are a mix of pedestrian and extraordinary, with sushi and a variety of meats and fruits. The thin slices of pear that my wife thinks are cheese turn out not to be so: all the food is strictly kosher.

My friend locates us at last. He is busy, but gracious, and glad to see me and meet my wife. He has to get ready for his part in the ceremony, so he introduces us to an aunt. She agrees to be our Virgil, and explains some of what will happen. Soon, she tells us, there will come a rolling team of men, blowing horns. They will surround the groom, who will go up to the bride and peek under her veil, recalling that Jacob was once fooled by his father-in-law into marrying Leah, the older sister, instead of the more desirable Rachel. This groom will not be forced to wait 7 years to marry HIS betrothed. After the unveiling, the guests will be called in to the ceremony, with men strictly seated on one side of the room, and women strictly seated on the other. Following the ceremony, we will go in to dinner and dancing; as we are not Orthodox, we are seated at a “mixed” table for the dinner, with men and women seated together.

And so the evening proceeds. We are soon treated to the spectacle of a young man and his entourage barreling into the hall like that pack of fox-hunting hounds in Bugs Bunny, in the midst of a roiling group of similarly-dressed young men. Horns blaring, they sweep him along to where the bride is sitting, their mood triumphant, dominant, even. Her identity verified, they retreat from the hall, and lead him to where the ceremony is to take place.

One thing is immediately obvious. In Roissyist terminology, this young man (my wife said “boy”) is CLEARLY a “beta.” His friends all seem the same way, too, courageous as a group, but otherwise undistinguished. There is little about him that suggests he is even close to a SMP match for the young woman he is marrying. And yet, at the behest of her father and his father, they were introduced and agreed to marry.

We proceed into the hall where the ceremony is to take place. I take my seat on the far edge of the right-hand side; my wife moves over to a seat on the nave on the women’s side of the hall. Gradually, Orthodox Jewish men filter in to sit near me, but with a distance of a couple of chairs. No one strikes up conversation with me, perhaps because I am an outsider, but more likely because the young men are using smart phones to quietly keep themselves occupied, and each older man within eyesight has his attention focused on a sheaf of hand-written Hebrew pages that he is intently studying, some rocking back and forth as they do so.

The ceremony begins. First, the groom proceeds in, along with his parents. He is seen more clearly now, and is very young, no more than 22. The beta description is accurate; he is overwhelmed with emotion and cries as his father speaks words blessing him. He is not physically fit but not overweight; not tall, but not short; he does not project a masculine confidence, to me; he is, in a word, nondescript. Now the bride enters, along with my friend and his wife. She approaches the raised Chuppah where the groom awaits. When she gets to him, she must circle him 7 times (Brief divergence for an explanation: “One of the many explanations for these seven circuits is that they represent a seven-fold bond which marriage will establish between the bride and groom and their families. This act also recalls the seven times that the Tefillin straps are wrapped around a man’s arm. Just as a man binds himself in love to G-d, so is his bond in love to his bride. The number seven represents the completion of the seven day process in which earth was created. During these seven days, the earth revolved on its axis seven times. Since marriage reenacts the creative process, the Kallah’s encirclement symbolizes the repetition of these seven earthly rotations…Also, on the day of his wedding, the groom is compared to a king. Just as the king is encircled by his legion, the groom is to be encircled by his bridal entourage.”) before standing at his right side for the ceremony.

Like the Amish that the black dress recalls to me, the ceremony is largely English, sprinkled with a goodly amount of blessings in a mother tongue, German for the Amish, Hebrew for the Jews. A parade of speakers comes up to offer blessings, with the highest honor given to the oldest male relative, the bride’s paternal grandfather. I don’t know most of the words, but by the end of the blessings, I know that a Kallah is a bride, and a Chosson is a groom, as each speaker is called as “mother of the Kallah” or “uncle of the Chosson.”

After the blessings, the bride is presented with a ring by her groom. Like Tridentine Catholics reciting a Kyrie Eleison, the Jewish ceremony now switches to yet another practically dead language. The marriage contract, the Ketubah, is read out in Aramaic, in front of the whole crowd. (Explanation: “The signing of the Kesubah shows that the bride and groom do not see marriage as only a physical and emotional union, but also as a legal and moral commitment which delineates the human and financial obligations of the husband to his wife according to Jewish law and customs. The Kesubah also protects the special rights and dignified status entitled to the wife in the marriage.”)

After the contract is read, there are more blessings, and it appeared some wine drinking. Then the ceremony ended, and the bride and groom recessed from the hall. Now they were surrounded by a raucous group of ecstatic young men, with women on the left side of the hall offering congratulations to the bride, when they could penetrate the protective circle of men around the couple. We proceeded to the reception hall, and the tables for dinner, making polite conversation before excusing ourselves for the night. We would later find out that ceremonies went on for hours after we left.

On the drive home, I had a chance to talk with my wife about her experience in the segregated hall. She had sat amongst a group of non-Orthodox women (some non-Jewish), and being women, they did what women are especially good at, chatting with other women. First, the universal reaction of the women about the “boy” as they called him: Meh. But, a number said, “He’s rich!” They told my wife about the marriage contract, and what a “good deal” it entails for the bride. He promises to feed, clothe, and shelter her, and also provide for all her sexual needs. The contract appears to go in one direction, from male promises to his bride. They also filled in little nuances about how the ceremony is designed to bind the wife to her husband, and how all the young men in the rolling pack are to serve as guardians of the wedding vows. My wife comments to me that the two young people seemed AWFULLY young; presuming them to be 22, I asked her if that was not the same age as her own, til-death-did-they-part parents’ wedding, and it in fact was.

I catch up with my friend a few days later. He is tired, as Orthodox tradition requires celebration of the marriage on each of the next 8 nights, sometimes at the groom’s family’s house, sometimes at the bride’s family’s house. He has been partying for days, and is clearly happy at the union his daughter has engaged in.

He fills me in on some background on the groom’s family (and corrects ages: both bride and groom are 21.). The groom’s father was a typical Orthodox man, living in near-poverty and dedicating his time to study. At one point, he saw an opportunity that involved an existential financial threat, and took a very large gamble. With the support of his wife and family, the gamble paid off, and he became quite wealthy, enough so as to supply many of the nicely turned out food items I had eaten. The boy, as my friend called him, was a “nice boy,” a “good boy” who was very smart, and a great scholar. He was going on to higher education at a distinguished school, and was aiming towards an upper-middle-class profession. He had liked my friend’s daughter on meeting her, and promised my friend to take care of her, earning his approval. I think the married couple will have a long life together.

There are some conclusions for the Patriactionary to draw from this ceremony, especially for traditionalist Christians. In no particular order:

Religions whose ceremonies are entirely or mostly in the vernacular cannot in form display the mystery that religions that use obscure, dead languages can. It cannot be coincidental that growing faiths, like Islam, Traditionalist Catholicism, the Amish, and the Orthodox Jews, rely so heavily on mysterious and reverence-inducing languages, at odds with the modern vernacular.

A religion that creates a community holds a high place of honor for the elderly, as voices of wisdom: they are most definitely divorced from the youth-obsessed culture about us. For women, especially, this is important, as they can trade the beautiful stage for the honored grandmother stage.

Segregation of men from women does not harm their ability to pair bond for a long time. More importantly, it preserves an area of male privilege unbreachable by women, where men can coordinate actions together. Again, traditionalist religions KEEP WOMEN OUT OF THE PRIESTHOOD but assign them a special place of their own to run.

Beta men can win women of higher SMV by banding together to exclude interlopers who might try to game the sexual marketplace so as to monopolize a young woman’s most attractive years between 18 and 24. Each beta man does so in the knowledge that enforcement of community norms means that he, also, will gain access to the great bounty that is feminine youthful beauty.

Traditionalist religions, like Orthodox Judaism, recognize the difference in sex market rank between young men and young women, and design structures to balance these out. She must surrender her youth, virginity, and beauty to a man who ranks lower than he does; in turn, he must promise to provide material support to her, and also continue to serve as her sexual partner long after she has passed her “Wile E. Coyote” moment, and her sexual market value has plunged off a cliff.

The religious community must maintain a strong community life apart from the mainstream society, so strong that threatening to be expelled from that society constrains the behavior of women and men. Orthodox Judaism permits secular divorce, but, like Catholicism, holds back one stricture: a divorced spouse does not have to grant a “get,” (similar to a Catholic annulment) permitting the other spouse to marry again in the Orthodox faith. Sometimes, this “get” is the only leverage a Jewish man will have to get a better deal in secular family courts. Since the government has not yet decided to tell religions who they can and cannot excommunicate, a strong, self-identified community is the only route to enforcing such things.

Marriage ceremonies should be an occasion for feasting, over several days, rather than a princess fantasy of one special day. Orthodox know this now; Christians once did, as the origin of Oktoberfest shows. This prepares bride and groom for a life of living together, and reduces the focus on one day.

Marriages must be seen as the bringing together of two families, not two people. Grooms must seek approval from brides’ fathers, and fathers must protect the chastity of their daughters. My friend’s daughter could honestly wear white at her wedding.

Marriage must be in accord with man’s biological nature. Female fertility is at a peak plateau from 18 to 24, and declines inexorably thereafter. Encouraging women to use that time to pursue careers or graduate school means that their chances of bearing healthy children will be lower, forever.

Following these ideas, there are a few conclusions we can draw. Marriage is the heart of society, but community is the critical foundation for successful marriage. Orthodox Jews have much lower divorce rates than Reform or Conservative Jews. This family strength is what gave my friend’s daughter’s father-in-law the courage to take a gamble that worked out well for his family, his community, and himself.

Most importantly, the future belongs to those who show up for it, and that means religions that can reproduce themselves by having a greater-than-replacement-rate fertility, and holding on to members. The Orthodox do this well, perhaps because they know that the lower the number of sex partners a woman has (barring 0, of course), the higher the number of children she bears. To whit: “Not only do the Orthodox suffer many fewer losses from intermarriage, but their fertility rate is far above the Jewish norm. As against the overall average of 1.86 children per Jewish woman, an informed estimate gives figures ranging upward from 3.3 children in “modern Orthodox” families to 6.6 in Haredi or “ultra-Orthodox” families to a whopping 7.9 in families of Hasidim.” Christianity did not conquer the Roman empire with the sword, but with higher fertility rates, not being focused on material aspects and the “doubtful doom of mankind.”

*Update: Since ElectricAngel has joined us since this was originally posted, I have moved this officially to under his authorship, removing it from under my name, for classification purposes – WS.

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48 Comments

Posted by on January 5, 2012 in culture, religion, spirituality, The Tribe

 

48 responses to “Guest post: At an Orthodox Jewish Wedding, by ElectricAngel

  1. Svar

    January 5, 2012 at 12:40 pm

    And you Prots laugh at us Papists for our Every Sperm is Sacred doctrine. As this one commenter notes about this Joe Sobran(RIP) article, “The only true thing that that can be said about people who practice homosexuality, contraception, and abortion is that they will be replaced by those who don’t.”

    Great article, ElectricAngel.

     
  2. Will S.

    January 5, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    Thanks for this, ElectricAngel. A fascinating journey inside a subculture many of us know very little about. (I’ve never attending any kind of Jewish wedding, let alone an Orthodox Jewish one; the closest I came was a mixed-marriage with a liberal Reform Jewish groom and a Gentile bride (mainline Prot); as a concession to the groom’s heritage, after the female ‘minister’ (ugh) conducted the vows, she had them toast each other with glasses of red wine, then throw the wine glasses on the ground, and stomp all over them, to signify the remembrance of the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem. Interesting, but nothing at all like your experience, above.)

    These OJs are wise, to continue doing things as they’ve always done – unlike most of the rest of us.

     
  3. Ulysses

    January 5, 2012 at 12:59 pm

    Svar – In practice things get mushier. All the Cradle Catholics I know use contraception without compunction. My high school sweetheart, a Cradle Catholic, insisted I wrap it up. Of course there is a split between Orthodox and more modern. Nonetheless, there is the argument that family planning is family planning; a seed withheld while the garden is fertile and receptive is not materially different from a blocked seed. (I am not a Catholic or a Catholic scholar, I am just putting forth an argument I’ve heard. Please Papists, don’t hurt me!)

    Though I find the breeder argument comforting, the fecundity of the proles is discomfiting as I think it’s the more prolific of the two.

     
  4. Svar

    January 5, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    Ulysses-there is NFP, but that’s okay because it’s not artificial birth control. It is hard to do though.

    As for your observation on Cradle Catholics… I find this to be generally true. I remember this one Catholic girl that I met about a year ago….

    It is sad that many Catholics don’t stick to the Faith…

     
  5. Master Po

    January 5, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    It is hard to do though.

    NFP/fertility awareness is not hard. Living for (up to) a week without sex is hard. But doing so makes you even harder!

     
  6. Master Po

    January 5, 2012 at 3:35 pm

    Oh, and for the record (and I know Svar knows this), the RCs do not believe in the doctrine of “every sperm is sacred”. We believe that human bodies, having a telos, are sacred and therefore meant for sacred ends. Neither the Church nor any of the faithful cry tears over sperm cells that are reabsorbed or emitted unintentionally or that ooze out when your wife stands up.

     
  7. Will S.

    January 5, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    “Living for (up to) a week without sex is hard. But doing so makes you even harder!”

    Abstinence makes the manhood grow fonder? 😉

    “Neither the Church nor any of the faithful cry tears over sperm cells that are reabsorbed or emitted unintentionally or that ooze out when your wife stands up.”

    Good to know!

     
  8. will

    January 5, 2012 at 5:01 pm

    @Will S. Yet they will use technology to reproduce even though their homosexual relationships are by definition sterile. And the fact that they will use the educational system to poison the minds of impressionable children of those conservatives.

     
  9. Will S.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    @ will: Sorry, I’m confused; who are you referring to? I presume you’re not talking about either Orthodox Jews or traditionalist Roman Catholics, so I’m not sure which statement of mine you’re replying to. I certainly agree with you, that progressives will do those things, alas…

     
  10. Will S.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:13 pm

    Or maybe you’re responding to Svar’s first comment?

     
  11. Samson J.

    January 5, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    He’s replying to Svar, and he’s got a good point, but I remain optimistic in the long run. I think too often we modern Christians forget that we should be thinking about the long run.

    there is NFP, but that’s okay because it’s not artificial birth control. It is hard to do though.

    It is hard*er* than taking a pill (but even doing that consistently is hard for some!), but as Po says it’s not all that difficult once you get used to it, and the rewards are worth it. We have discussed teaching it to our daughters someday.

     
  12. Svar

    January 5, 2012 at 8:09 pm

    “but I remain optimistic in the long run.”

    I’m optimistic. Through artificial means, the sods and degenerates can only have one-two kids. Surrogates are expensive and in vitro is expensive and for desperate aging women. We can out-breed them.

    “Po says it’s not all that difficult once you get used to it, and the rewards are worth it.”

    I didn’t know that there were rewards. What are they?

     
  13. Carnivore

    January 5, 2012 at 8:59 pm

    Great article. Comment on the following:
    Religions whose ceremonies are entirely or mostly in the vernacular cannot in form display the mystery that religions that use obscure, dead languages can. It cannot be coincidental that growing faiths, like Islam, Traditionalist Catholicism, the Amish, and the Orthodox Jews, rely so heavily on mysterious and reverence-inducing languages, at odds with the modern vernacular.

    In addition to the mystery and reverence, one of the absolute advantages of using dead languages (Latin, in my case) is that their meaning is fixed. The prayer to God cannot be changed due to PC or for any other reasons. Granted, a person not well versed in the language will need a translation, but a careful search yields translations in early editions which are closer to the original language than modern editions.

     
  14. Master Po & Mrs. Po

    January 5, 2012 at 10:34 pm

    I didn’t know that there were rewards [to NFP]. What are they?

    According to Mrs. Po, “It puts a temporary break on the male sexuality, and allows the woman’s to rise to nearly the same level.” She adds that it allows the wife to receive attention from her husband that is not explicitly sexual, nor proximately intended to end in the conjugal act. It is, she says, a bit like dating again. Also there is the physical recovery of the various parts that get sore from the excessive use.

    According the Mr. Po, all of the above is true and adds up to absolute rocket fuel in the bedroom. I swear to God I have never had so much sex, so varied, and so intense, when we were contracepting–never even dreamed of it… and I could even then dream of a lot. It is literally a factor of 3 at least higher on average. The charts we keep for NFP/fertility awareness document coitus and most lunar cycles bear a remarkable and dense array of tiny check marks.

    Your mileage may, of course, vary.

    I say all this intended as edification and not as invitation for stupid, petty barbs.

     
  15. Svar

    January 5, 2012 at 11:31 pm

    “I say all this intended as edification and not as invitation for stupid, petty barbs.”

    Don’t worry, I’m done taking the piss outta ya.

    “She adds that it allows the wife to receive attention from her husband that is not explicitly sexual, nor proximately intended to end in the conjugal act. It is, she says, a bit like dating again. Also there is the physical recovery of the various parts that get sore from the excessive use.”

    So yay or nay on the Australian Kiss? Because what I do know is that she can get off via oral and manual means but not you.

    “According the Mr. Po, all of the above is true and adds up to absolute rocket fuel in the bedroom. I swear to God I have never had so much sex, so varied, and so intense, when we were contracepting–never even dreamed of it… and I could even then dream of a lot. It is literally a factor of 3 at least higher on average. ”

    Interesting. Do do you guys make a calender of some sort or do you wing it?

     
  16. will

    January 5, 2012 at 11:47 pm

    @ Will S sorry my mistake. But the fact that those liberals are in control of the educational institutions and government as well as dominating culture. They might force conservative children to be indoctrinated in their hogwash by taking them away from those committing the “child abuse” of shoving patriarchy and religion down their throats if the feminists and big government as well as useful idiot gay activists go far enough. They are already promoting homosexuality and sex before marriage as normal in culture and in public schools. Therefore the fertility bonus of conservatives in children may not last as their children are indoctrinated in secular humanist culture in public school and even in private catholic schools.

    @Svar Also although homosexual relationships are by definition sterile they will still raise children through adoption or reproductive technologies and the fact that they through environment raise children more likely to be homosexual and generally gender non-conforming they are unlikely to go extinct and be replaced by conservatives.

     
  17. Will S.

    January 6, 2012 at 12:11 am

    @ will: Indeed, the idea that traditionalists will merely outbreed progressives, queers, etc. is naive, in that as you say, they recruit, and they brainwash, others, and turn them into progressives, queers, etc. That’s how those pathologies reproduce; not by natural means, but by memes, spread by the media and entertainment industries. (Yes, some will object that homosexuality may be more a result of genetics or environment, but it is well-known that they recruit others into their lifestyles. Moreover, insofar as it is genetic or environmental, we’ll likely always have it popping up ‘naturally’, i.e. some people will continue to go that way – and as you say, if they can adopt kids, they can instill progressivism into them, even recruit them…)

    The other thing we should keep in mind, is that it isn’t only traditionalists who breed; poor, ghetto trash, white trash, etc., are quite fecund, too; they may not have large official families, but they’re siring lots of bastards. And that engenders more societal rot and decay… Outbreeding the left while not outbreeding the proles, won’t solve anything…

    Then again, we have external threats, which are also internal threats – there are traditionalists in other societies, esp. Islam, who are still having large families; we can’t smugly think that we’ll win a war against progressivism merely by having babies and big families, when we also have members of enemy civilizations, in our very midst, thanks to mass immigration… Some of those people may, possibly, on an issue by issue basis, be temporary allies, but they tend to vote for progressive parties anyway, because they keep the floodgates of wide unchecked immigration open, which they care more about than social issues.

    Traditionalist Christians will not defeat their enemies by outbreeding them, alone; a comprehensive strategy, aimed at ending widespread poverty, opposing progressivism, and routing any enemies within our gates, and ending the immigration of incompatibles, must needs be implemented alongside any “revenge of the cradle” scenarios, as they won’t do any good on their own. Having big families is great. But that alone isn’t enough.

     
  18. Svar

    January 6, 2012 at 12:16 pm

    @will and Will

    There is always the possibility of parallel societies. Unfortunately in America we have the ACLU. Oh, and the $PLC.

     
  19. Svar

    January 6, 2012 at 12:19 pm

    Regardless, will, you do make a good point that breeding isn’t enough. But that is one part of the battle.

     
  20. Master Po

    January 6, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    Interesting. Do do you guys make a calender of some sort or do you wing it?

    We have created our own (MS word) copy of of the “CCL Daily Chart” (which was undoubtely copywritten) from (I think) the book: “Taking Charge of Your Own Fertility” (or some such name, not a book BTW explicitly NFP, nor written by Catholics, but in my opinion the most easily understandable book on the subject). Each “lunar” cycle gets a page. It basically documents: day, date, coitus, basal AM temperature, menses, cervical attitude (high/low, open/closed, soft/hard), and cervical mucus observations.

    It may sound daunting, but with practice, you are really only looking for one thing: when will/did ovulation occur? Cervical and mucal signs give you advance warning, temperature and/or day counting after “peak” day tell you when its safe again. “Peak day” is the best guess of day when ovulation occurs. If you get good at predicting that you can reduce the desert times by quite a bit. On the early side (pre-peak), sure, sperm cells can live 2-3 days in there (they’ve documented 8… way to go dude!), but really if she’s not showing signs of fertility, then the environment will be very hostile. On the late (post-peak) side, you really only need 24 hours (48 hours to be super “safe”) to get past “danger”.

    So yay or nay on the Australian Kiss? Because what I do know is that she can get off via oral and manual means but not you.

    By the context, I assume that the “Australian Kiss” refers to cunnilingus. Our interpretation of Catholic teaching on the subject is that female orgasm may licitly be had by a variety of non-coital, or not strictly coital, techniques, but that it should be (telos again and all that) in the overall context of, i.e, proximal to, full conjugal relations. I would therefore consider it gravely sinful to “get her off” whilst not particpating “to completion” myself, or for that matter dry bobbing… which truth be told would be extraordinarily difficult (and rather depressing) after several days of abstinence anyway. I’ll get back to you in 20 years (when I’m 65), but that sounds like an absolutely terrible idea right now.

     
  21. pb

    January 6, 2012 at 3:50 pm

    “Religions whose ceremonies are entirely or mostly in the vernacular cannot in form display the mystery that religions that use obscure, dead languages can.”

    Eastern Orthodox Christians usually use a hieratic form of the “vernacular,” so this doesn’t necessarily contradict what you wrote.

     
  22. ElectricAngel

    January 7, 2012 at 1:07 am

    Svar, Will S., thanks for the compliments. But Will, I feel the need to assign you this article for your later comments on Muslims. The Great Satan, indeed.

    Carnivore, I had not thought about the PC. I still remember older versions of hymns that were “let me walk with my brother” that now sound “let us walk with each other.” Eliminating the brother also required the singers to eliminate the “my,” depersonalizing what’s sung. Your point is well taken.

    Further to the point on Latin, Dr. Gary North made the comment about Mel Gibson’s <i.Passion of the Christ that the film was a sort of catholic mass, in the universal sense: because the dialogue was in two dead languages, EVERYONE around the world saw the same film, albeit with subtitles. It was like every Catholic 50 years ago attending the exact same Latin mass all over the world.

    One last point: there was a great article, bookmarked on the laptop that I wiped out with my strong neodymium magnets, in the 90s that talked about how religions would thrive in the future. They could either be loosey-goosey and demand little of people (all dogs go to heaven type theology), in which case they’d have a lot of adherents, but shallow. Or, they could be hardcore, like the Orthodox, demanding kosher and constant reminders that you are a member of that faith. (This is the human nature of sunk costs, or path dependency.) Middling religions would lose adherents because they were too strict for the loosey-types, and not demanding enough to make people make a REAL commitment to them. The article specifically mentioned the Catholic church in the middle ground, and you can see that this has been the effect of Vatican II: it liberalized enough to drive away the hardcore (who have thankfully been welcomed back by Benedict), but not enough to please people hungry for divorce and condoms. The middling Church will be replaced my the Traditionalist Church, with its families of 8 and its devotions to the Latin mass.

    I will examine this philosophy more in coming articles, with an emphasis on how only becoming “Urban Amish” can allow something to survive of this corpse of a civilization. Svar, as long as the government respects the First Amendment and does not interfere in a Church’s process of excommunication, there is a way to do it.

     
  23. Will S.

    January 7, 2012 at 8:55 am

    @ ElectricAngel: Thanks for the link to the Peter Kreeft essay; I certainly agree, about who our ultimate enemy is. But we do have temporal enemies while on this Earth, who promote ways other than that of Christ. We are called, of course, to love our enemies. But that doesn’t require us to surrender to them…

     
  24. ElectricAngel

    January 7, 2012 at 1:00 pm

    @Will S.,

    One of my favorite quotes is this: “The most religious country in the world is India. The least religious one is Sweden. America is a country of Indians, ruled by Swedes.”

    I used to believe the US Government would provide protection against attack. That belief crumbled at 10:28 on 9/11/01, when I watched my wife’s office tower crumble before I had heard back from her. As Kreeft writes, when the Iranians call the US Government “the Great Satan,” they’re right. Muslims fundamentalists didn’t pass Roe v. Wade, leading to the deaths of 50 million unborn children. In comparison to the pile of bodies heaped up as a result of USG policies, the deaths inflicted by Muslims in the 20th century are a flea bite on an elephant’s rear end.

    That having been said, there is NO call to import Muslims into the USA. Older Persians (please don’t call them Iranians) were a great pickup for America, smart, attractive, non-trouble-making. But anyone coming out of extremely dysfunctional Pakistan or Egypt or Saudi Arabia today (30 years ago, different) will carry that dysfunction here.

    Still, the organization that will not defend the borders, and opposes local people from doing so, is you-know-who. They need to collapse, quickly, so that local, subsidiarity-favoring order can be preserved. There’s no way to do that with violence, but there is a way to do it, with patriarchal religions, and the Amish hold the key. Otherwise, we face an easy conquest, and we will deserve it.

     
  25. Will S.

    January 7, 2012 at 7:47 pm

    @ ElectricAngel: Not sure which you-know-who organization you’re referring to, which won’t defend the borders (sorry, I’m not American, I’m Canadian, so I might miss some things that are obvious to you and your fellow Americans). Do you mean the Department of Homeland Security?

     
    • ElectricAngel

      January 7, 2012 at 8:53 pm

      @Will S.
      I meant the USG. Canada is not much better on Importing a new people, like the way they destroyed Quebecois independence with immigrants, but at least they try to have wealthier and presumably smarter people come in. the USA seems determined to literally implement Emma Lazarus’ policy of “wretched refuse” herding in.

       
  26. Will S.

    January 7, 2012 at 9:00 pm

    Ah, okay.

    Yes, the Canadian government seems hell-bent on replacing both founding peoples, English and French, with others, and indeed has used immigration to Quebec as a way to sufficiently dilute the French-Canadian vote there to make sovereignty an impossibility. Back in 1995, Quebec premier Jacques Parizeau was vilified when he said, when asked what defeated the Yes side in the 1995 sovereignty referendum, “l’argent et la vote ethnique” (money and the ethnic vote). But he was right, no doubt.

     
  27. Will S.

    January 7, 2012 at 9:10 pm

    And yeah, the Canadian government is trying to target mostly skilled professionals; while we have a fairly wide-open refugee policy – far too lax, IMO – at least the standards for legal immigration are stricter. (And we don’t have a problem with tons of illegals coming over, unlike in your country, what with the porosity of your southern border, and a Third World country on the other side of it.)

    Of course, it has been noted that Canada is skimming off ‘the cream’ of other countries, esp. Third-World ones, and thus robbing those countries of their best and brightest, thus helping perpetuate the wretchedness of those lands…

    I’d prefer to have more immigration from Britain and Europe, and other Western countries, myself – but few people in Western countries are emigrating anywhere, today…

     
  28. Gay State Girl

    May 3, 2012 at 8:54 pm

    Many Orthodox men spend a good deal of their working week in kollel, studying torah, and their wives go to work to support 12 children and the old people have to go out into the street to beg.

     
  29. electricangel1978

    May 3, 2012 at 9:26 pm

    @GSG,

    Many Orthodox men spend a good deal of their working week in kollel, studying torah, and their wives go to work to support 12 children and the old people have to go out into the street to beg.

    Got any links to back that up? (Recall that I was talking about Orthodox here, not Hasidim. ) Any idea if the number of Orthodox men who’ve fathered 12 children and have been supported by their wives is even 1/1000th of the number of men forced to slave for women who absconded with their children, houses, and all their income in chilimony?

     
  30. Gay State Girl

    May 3, 2012 at 10:17 pm

    Maybe I was a bit misleading, as Orthodox women did not opt for the more prestigious positions in the professional world until very recently, receiving six figure salaries to support their families. But women would often become domestic laborers or tend storefront counters in the orthodox community to bring in a little extra money and supplement the aid they receive from the government. In Israel, there is an increasing divide between the Haredim and Chilunim (secular Israelis) and a growing resentment from the Chilunim, as Haredi males prefer not to serve in the military (as is required of other Israelis) and spend a significant portion of their working week on religious duties and expect non Orthodox jews to subsidize their lifestyles and help feed their large families.

    I’ve never had any desire to enter politics or be part of the clergy, but I’ve always felt the emphasis on the supposed sanctity of the home and higher spiritual status of women was a disingenous pat on the back.

     
  31. David Collard

    May 4, 2012 at 6:41 am

    Will, I suspect it was the Quiet Revolution and decreased French Catholic birth rates that defeated separatism. I seem to remember that the referendum was very close indeed.

    I spent a short period in Montreal and found it fascinating.

     
  32. Will S.

    May 4, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    @ DC: Oh, absolutely; they defeated themselves, indeed, by ending “La Revanche des Berceaux”, with the decreased birthrates that came out of the Quiet Revolution. Amusing, really…

     
  33. Will S.

    May 4, 2012 at 3:31 pm

    The 2005 referendum was very close, it was 50.5 / 49.5, basically.

     
  34. oogenhand

    February 22, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    Reblogged this on oogenhand and commented:
    “Religions whose ceremonies are entirely or mostly in the vernacular cannot in form display the mystery that religions that use obscure, dead languages can.”

    Very important. It also helps to keep away prying eyes…

     

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