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Wednesday, 25 July 2012

On False Prophets and Scandal

Acquaintances and friends have dropped me recently because they are involved in following false prophets and seers. When I pointed out the errors, I was cut off from intimacy and trust on their part. Sadly, this is a result of the sin of scandal. Scandal is caused when one chooses sin which publicly leads others astray. Remember, the devil does not care how people lose their souls. Something could seem like a good and not be so. This is why those of us who are careful concerning seers seek the wisdom and guidance of Holy Mother Church. I pray these people see their errors and begin to meekly obey the Church. It is the closed-mindedness and anger which one meets when trying to help sort out the errors, which is so painful and a mystery to me. The defensiveness must be based on something.

Those creating scandal, which is mortal sin, invite others to sin as well. If a seer or false prophet is engaged in spreading doctrinal errors, this activity is inviting others to sin against truth. After being told
that something is wrong doctrinally, or that the Church has condemned or warned against a seer, a person who persists in following that person either by supporting them financially, or visiting their holy places, or going to their talks, is likewise committing a sin of disobedience on top of scandal.

There are divisions to the sin of scandal, as there are to most sins. Here are the divisions from Catholic Encyclopedia online:

(1) Scandal is divided into active and passive. Active scandal is that which has been defined above; passivescandal is the sin which another commits in consequence of active scandal. Passive scandal is called scandal given (scandalum datum), when the act of the scandalizer is of a nature to occasion it; and scandal received (acceptum), when the action of the one who scandalizes is due solely to ignorance or weakness—this isscandal of the weak (infirmorum),—or to malice and evil inclinations—this is pharisaical scandal, which was that of the Pharisees with regard to the words and actions of Christ.

Some Catholics who are weak or ignorant fall under this category. Notice that weakness or ignorance do not take away culpability for sin. This is an important point. And, if one persists in sin, one can see the evil of that decision, especially after being told of the dangers.

The second division is:

(2) Active scandal is direct when he who commits it has the intention of inducing another to sin; such is the sin of one who solicits another to the crime of adultery, theft etc. If one prevails upon another to commit thesin not only because of an advantage or pleasure believed to accrue therefrom but chiefly because of the sin itself, because it is an offence to God or the ruin of a neighbor's soul, direct scandal is called by the expressive name of diabolical scandal. On the other hand scandal is only indirect when without the intention to cause another to fall into sin we say a word or perform a deed which is for him an occasion of sin

It is too easy to lead others astray, especially in our youth, when we have peers who are easily pressured, even TRAD peers, into believing something is not true.

Unless the Church approves a visionary, do not follow him or her. If one has been condemned or if the Church has given a warning against one, do not follow that person.

You do so at your own peril.

May I add that earlier in this series, I outlined the way the Church determines the validity of revelations. One can put in "private revelations" in the search bar.

A reminder-a person who is a visionary can be made a Blessed or Venerable without her writings or visions being approved. I know this sounds odd, but it is so. Also, a veneration of a particular statue or devotion to Mary can be approved without the revelations being approved. This happens more than one would think.

The Return of the Feminine?

Some of my friends and I have noticed a fashion design change, which is huge. A few years ago, one could not find skirts or dresses in many of the high-street shops. A few names carried them, but if one wanted, for example, a particular colored dress or skirt, shopping became a real chore. Many of us trad women have shopped at second-hand stores for years, as that is where we could find quality dresses and skirts from days past.

This has changed. Daily, I now see ladies and girls in dresses and skirts and blouses. I am happy. The problem is that this trend has not hit two types of females: women over 60, and young women who are not peaceful with being feminine.

The older ones are either still in rebellion and feminists, like Ms. Clinton, or they are cold. However, when temperatures hit 91 Fahrenheit, one would think the second argument falls flat.

Other reasons create a problem which is more serious and connected to several factors. The first is the push to be "sporty"; many young women in their twenties wear sports clothes all the time. I see this in London. The clothes, which are not inexpensive, are either too tight, or too baggy. I think the shirts with sports logos and team names create the worst eye-sores. Why a beautiful young woman of twenty-something would walk through Portobello Market with a Manchester United shirt on is beyond me. Why a young woman of twenty-something would wear tight bicycling pants for shopping is strange.

There is a lack of appropriateness in dressing. We dressed for occasions, including shopping. Now, I know some ladies hate the thought of changing before going out, but that is how I grew up. You changed for shopping, going to the doctor, going to church, and visiting.

As I wore a uniform from age 6 until 18 and was a day-student, I changed for dinner, as did my brothers.

So, "sporty" falls under inappropriateness. If one goes to a baseball game or soccer game, by all means dress in fan colors. Why not? Why not a skirt and blouse in red and white or whatever? Cute.

Secondly, there are many women who hate the fact that they have fat legs, less than perfect hips, and curly hair. Whatever the problem as perceived, because they do not look like Barbie, or the latest famous actress or singer, they will not wear dresses or skirts. This is a serious problem. Their mums are probably wearing pants, trousers, slacks, whatever you call them all the time as they lack confidence is just being a woman.

Thirdly, the evil in the world stresses androgyny. Androgyny denies gender differences, and see my post  on the EU wanting countries to pass a law which states that gender differences are created by a culture. This attitude denies God as Creator of male and female and allows for all types of sexual deviance.

Fourthly, Catholic mums have failed to pass on femininity to their daughters. I could write a book on this fact alone. Eating habits, how one walks, appropriate tone of voice, etc. have not been seen as disciplines. The worst to me is raucous, loud laughter. A woman of God must be feminine. If a woman starts talking to me about being a committed Christian on the street, and is wearing blue jeans and a sweat shirt, I would like to speak with her about being a Christian woman.

Lastly, if we are to evangelize the world, we must not give in to modern culture regarding dress. Modesty and appropriateness must accompany a interior disposition to put on the Mind of Christ. If there is a disjoint, I am concerned. The physical and the spiritual are one. If there is a split in the personality, there is a character defect. Self-hatred is sinful as well as a psychological problem. This is connected to the second problem of women not accepting who they are and how God made them.

Catholic women need to look and act like women.

As a postscript, there are some readers who do not understand what a blog or a post is. I always give my sources if those ideas are not my own. Otherwise, one can be assured these are my own. However, my ideas are based on tradition, the Teaching Magisterium, or years of Catholic wisdom in the Catholic culture. Also, I try to write in truth. I find that many women who get angry about being feminine and who want to wear trousers or jeans, just do not understand what I am saying about the evils of androgyny. I hope all readers pause and think, and not merely have knee-jerk reactions.

Another Gramsci Post and the Enemy of Marxism

Thanks, Wiki

Well, I haven't written about Gramsci for a long time, and as I only have 16 articles in which I mention him by name, I thought it was about time I brought him out of the closet again.

Why? Because Catholics do not think like Catholics.

Gramsci understood that neo-Thomism was a danger to Communism.  He knew that Thomism and neo-Thomism were antithetical to communism and the war against culture. He quotes an article by Father Gemelli on Leo XIII in Notebook I. "To lead the world back to a fundamental doctrine by means of which the intelligence can regain the ability to show man the truth which he must acknowledge and to do so not only by preparing the path to faith, but by giving man the means to securely handle all of life's problems. Leo XIII thus offered the Christian people a philosophy, the doctrine of scholasticism, not as a narrow, static and exclusive frame of knowledge but as an organism of living thought which is open to enrichment by the thought of all the Doctors and Fathers, and which is capable of bringing the speculation of rational theology into harmony with the data of positive science, a condition for stimulating and harmonizing reason and faith, the real and the ideal, the past and the discoveries of the future, prayer and action, internal and social life, the duties of the individual and those of society, the duties toward God and the duties toward man."

This packed quote in Gramsci's Notebook, indicates that he knew that the most formidable enemy of Marxist and atheism was the rational and faithful Catholic.

A thinking Catholic who has the framework for a living faith could create activity in all strata of society and appeal to the intellectual as well as the laborer, who, in Gramsci's eyes should be one and the same.

He wanted intellectualism  not to be the mark of academia, but of all levels of society. Why? Gramsci saw the power of a cohesive mind-set, a unified world view. an ideal and reality which would counteract both socialism and individualism.

The moral impetus of the Church could be found nowhere else but in Marxism.

And the strength of the unified declaration of the equality and freedom of all humans which the Marxists taught was only rivaled by the Thomism and neo-Thomism of the Catholic Church.

This is one reason why the neo-Thomists, such as Maritain and Dawson, were so interested in culture and politics. They could see the need for this application of Thomism as a wall against communism and atheism. They could see that tyranny had to be combated by a strong philosophy, the Handmaid of Theology.

Sigh, too bad Thomism was dropped as a philosophical core course by the late 1950s in America. Too bad the seminaries in Europe were infiltrated by other philosophies open to Marxist interpretations of history and progress in the 1930s. Too bad the definition of the individual changed in seminary classes.

Now, the new orders, such as the FSSPs, and the Legionaries, have realized the weaknesses of seminary training which does not apply this Catholic manner of thinking and have re-introduced this philosophy, which leads to a practical world-view. No offense, but we have many uneducated seminarians from diocesan colleges, who lack a common philosophy which ties all their courses into a cohesive world-view. They do not think like Catholics.

It is interesting to me that so many post-Vatican II priests distrust Thomism and neo-Thomism. I think it is because they want to be open to the relativism and ideologies of modernist heresies, including communism and socialism.

Gramsci knew his enemy and his enemy has failed to be vigilant.

USCCB supports contraception abroad

In case you missed this, Michael Voris adds to my opinion, expressed here and elsewhere, that the USCCB has to go.

Perfection Series continued--sins

A reader asked me to break down some of the categories of sin and concupiscence. I hope this answers her questions.

Here was the original list:

Under Pride and Self, these are listed: vainglory, disobedience, boasting, hypocrisy, contention, rivalry, discord,, singularity, stubbornness, sloth (acedia), hatred of spiritual things, malice, rancor, pusillanimity, discouragement, spiritual torpor, forgetfulness of precepts and seeking after forbidden things.

Catholics who insist on following false, condemned seers are committing a sin of pride.

In the next category of Pride, that of sins against others, the list continues: envy, hatred, detraction, calumny, joy at the misfortune of others, sadness at another's success, anger, disputes, fits of passion, insults, contumely, blasphemy.

Let me start with pusillanimity. To be pusillanimous is to be cowardly and timid to the point of not living up to  one's potential. Now, psychology wants us to believe that weaknesses are not sin. And, why are weaknesses sin? Because we have access to grace, we can change. We are not doomed to live in sinful conditions owing to our past experiences or natural or nurturer-faults. If one is timid to the point of living in fear, and I know an entire family like this, one must stop and get an excellent Catholic counselor or spiritual director, or both.

Cowardice created excuses, so  a pusillanimous tends to lie and cover up weaknesses.

Another sin which may need defining is contumely. This is a HUGE sin in the modern world. It is abusive and offensive language and behavior, as well as rude, insulting and scornful language and behavior. This sin has increased in the past decade, as people, including politicians, think they can be rude and act rude with impunity.

I am amazed at parents who allow their children to be rude. I saw this beginning in about 1990, when one of the mothers in my coffee morning-toddler play group was sending her two year old to aggressive training classes. This is not a joke. 

I said to her at the time that a two-year old hardly needs aggressiveness training and her response was that the world was so bad that survival of the fittest meant her son needed this.

I wonder what he is like now.

To be continued...

The Virtues To Beat the Vices

So as not to fall into despair, one must cultivate the virtues, which we should be doing in childhood.

The habit of virtue can be taught and learned at very early ages. "Give me a child before five, and I have him for life". An old Jesuit saying, which I saw as true when I was teaching Montessori, this phrase sho

People want these days to let their children grow up like little weeds, thinking somehow, (well, it is not thinking) that these kids will automatically blossom into angels at puberty. No.

The life of the virtues is long and hard and starting early is a huge advantage.

This is the the importance of infant baptism. As we grow, we grow in either virtue or vice. There is no other way.

Some people have said to me, how did you know this or that practice, such as custody of the eyes, or daily examination of conscience, which are habits? I tell them I learned this at the ages of seven and eight, preparing for First Confession and Holy Communion. Some people are shocked. Why?

Even a toddler knows right and wrong. Just watch. Even children can go to hell. I was living in England when two very young boys kidnapped a toddler, tortured him and killed him. Sadly, we all need training in virtue.

The theological virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity help with SPECIFIC sins.

Garrigou-Lagrange explains this.

Charity "towards God, and gift of wisdom and towards one's neighbor--(fight) disgust for spiritual thing, envy discord, scandal."

Hope which is "confidence, abandonment, and the gift of fear, opposed to presumption, (fight) presumption and despair"

"Faith and the spirit of faith, and the gifts of understanding and knowledge (fight) infidelity, blasphemy, blindness, culpable ignorance."

The great Dominican goes on to state that "Prudence, docility to good counsels and the gift of counsel" fight "imprudence and negligence, carnal prudence, cunning".

"Justice and the connected virtues of religion (gift of piety), penance, filial piety, obedience gratitude, veractiy, fidelity, liberality" fight " injustice, impiety, superstition, hypocrisy, lying."

"Fortitude and teh gift o f fortitude, with magnanimity, patience and perseverance" fight, "rash boldness, cowardliness and pusillanimity."

"Temperance, sobriety and chastity, with meekness and humility" fight "intemperance, lust, anger, pride and curiosity."

I don't know about you, but I have a lot of work to do....

If we do not help God destroy vice in us, we shall not see Him.