However, the recent events in the past two weeks prove my point that the Marx, Alinksy, Chomsky, Gramsci influences on this Administration hold firm. I want to highlight only two points I wrote about before on this blog-the idea of immanentism, condemned by several Popes and a key Gramsci idea, and the idea of hegemony of the mind.
I am doing this series on Pascendi (http://supertradmum-etheldredasplace.blogspot.com/2012/02/series-on-pascendi-dominici-gregis-part.html) and if there are seminarians out there who have read this great encyclical, do so now. You will need the information now and in days to come. If you understand the ideology of Gramsci and his ideas, you will be able to counteract the messy theology of social justice wafting across the Church in the States like poisonous gas.
But, first, let us look at the document's discussion of the heresy of immanence and then, Gramsci's use of the term. Pope St. Pius X writes that, Concerning immanence it is not easy to determine what Modernists mean by it, for their own opinions on the subject vary. Some understand it in the sense that God working in man is more intimately present in him than man is in even himself, and this conception, if properly understood, is free from reproach. Others hold that the divine action is one with the action of nature, as the action of the first cause is one with the action of the secondary cause, and this would destroy the supernatural order. Others, finally, explain it in a way which savours of pantheism and this, in truth, is the sense which tallies best with the rest of their doctrines.
In this small section, one can see that those agnostics or atheists who believe in a type of divine immanence place it firmly either in man or men, or in the movement of history, as some sort of power which is not of the supernatural order, but purely natural or human. Gramsci would see this power as a freedom from the rules, or laws of the Church, and place all power in some sort of historically based movement, almost like an evolutionary political utopian vision which grows within a people and a particular time period. As I noted in the post before this one, there is a momentum in this movement, the immanence no longer being ascribed to the Divine, but to humans, or to history. The denial of God and the denial of the Church allowed Gramsci to place immanence in the material-as he is a true materialist, as is Marx. All activity moves towards a goal of human freedom, almost like a utopian anarchy, except not quite. The "not quite" are the elite leaders, be they from the working class or be they from the academic class, the elite are part of this momentum towards freedom from all constraints.
The immanence is not a supernatural one, but caught in a context of history and even economic determinism.
This section from Pascendi should be memorized: Hence we have that distinction, so current among the Modernists, between the Christ of history and the Christ of faith, between the sacraments of history and the sacraments of faith, and so on. Next we find that the human element itself, which the historian has to work on, as it appears in the documents, has been by faith transfigured, that is to say raised above its historical conditions. It becomes necessary, therefore, to eliminate also the accretions which faith has added, to assign them to faith itself and to the history of faith: thus, when treating of Christ, the historian must set aside all that surpasses man in his natural condition, either according to the psychological conception of him, or according to the place and period of his existence. Finally, by virtue of the third principle, even those things which are not outside the sphere of history they pass through the crucible, excluding from history and relegating to faith everything which, in their judgment, is not in harmony with what they call the logic of facts and in character with the persons of whom they are predicated. Thus, they will not allow that Christ ever uttered those things which do not seem to be within the capacity of the multitudes that listened to Him. Hence they delete from His real history and transfer to faith all the allegories found in His discourses. Do you inquire as to the criterion they adopt to enable them to make these divisions? The reply is that they argue from the character of the man, from his condition of life, from his education, from the circumstances under which the facts took place - in short, from criteria which, when one considers them well, are purely subjective. Their method is to put themselves into the position and person of Christ, and then to attribute to Him what they would have done under like circumstances. In this way, absolutely a priori and acting on philosophical principles which they admit they hold but which they affect to ignore, they proclaim that Christ, according to what they call His real history, was not God and never did anything divine, and that as man He did and said only what they, judging from the time in which he lived, can admit Him to have said or done.
I hope this sounds familiar to many sems and university students, as you are getting this heresy rammed down your throats, as I did in some theology classes. The last part of this section describes the new Marxists, who would not used violence to overcome, but supplant Catholic definitions, which are objective truth, which subjectivism and material immanence. Thus, Western democracies would be destroyed by a new hegemony of the mind, my second highlighted point here.
This hegemony of the mind is a force against the domination of religion and the Church in the culture. The authority of the Church was to be undermined, slowly but surely, through historical movements of the human mind and activity, changing the culture incrementally, and creating crises to destroy religion. Does this sound familiar?