Christians of all denominations are facing a world-wide shift in opposition. This is not only obvious in the horrific persecutions of our brothers and sisters across the world, seen in daily news coming from Syria, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Kenya and Indonesia, to name a few places, but also in the hardening of attitudes in the Western World.
Here is the core problem. More and more people simply do not believe in the soul as the "form" of the body. They do not believe in the eternal life of the soul. They do not believe in a soul.
More and more people equate humans with animals totally, not making the Catholic distinction between an animal soul and a human soul.
More and more people deny that there is an afterlife, that humans were created to live forever with God.
More and more people deny any spiritual principal as making a human human.
This phenomenon goes beyond the ancient times of pagan ascendancy, when most people believed in some sort of afterlife, although not in the fullness of Revelation as we now have through the Scriptures.
The fact that a growing, strong minority of people deny any spiritual aspect of being human impacts the lives of Christians daily.
If we are all only animals, laws and governments will become more and more utilitarian.
If people see us as no longer a superior creation, we shall lose rights and privileges.
We already witness this in the holocaust of abortion.
In this post-Christian world, the moral framework of Christianity is fast disappearing from the public square.
One can no longer have conversations with people while referencing the divine, as the divine is not seen, as we see it, a reality of eternal, immortal life, which is our goal.
Sadly, those in academia, the medical fields, and the media, as well as many government officials, and world leaders are practical atheists, if not declared atheists.
Look at the number of world leaders in the West who do not attend any religious services on Sunday.
Look at the decisions made in academia and in the medical fields regarding life, the nature of life, the definition of "human".
We are losing common ground in conversation, as I have discovered. No longer do professionals in several areas believe in the soul, eternal life, or morality based on transcendent ideals.
This is a result of relativism and the lack of training in schools in logical thinking.
Without this shared view of what is means to be human, we can no longer enter into discussions with philosophers who are are closed to the idea of the soul, or doctors, or psychologists, or anthropologists, or
Before the last thirty years or so, there was an implicit acceptance of the reality of the eternal soul which informed most people's decisions in the West.
This is simply no longer the case. Without common ground, one must evangelize at a much more basic level.
We need to enter into conversations with questions such as "What does it mean to be human?", or "Are men and women more than merely the material body?" or "Are humans capable of more than living at the level of passion and material desires?"
Recently, I tried to introduce into a conversation with some professionals the idea of the soul as that which informs the intellect, the heart, the will. This idea was rejected immediately, as those with whom I was discussing this approach to humanity wanted to look at the human and define the human in scientific terms only.
To evangelize or merely suggest that most problems in the world are owing to spiritual chaos or spiritual realities brings about a response that one is stuck in the Middle Ages. The so-called modern world is rejecting more and more the concept that what is seen is more important than what is not seen.
Many, many Catholics, especially those who follow the heresy of Liberation Theology, have fallen into this false thinking, denying that the soul is more important than the body.
We have entered a time when many, many souls will be lost simply because people deny the hierarchy of the spiritual over the material.
We have lost the battle already in academia, where more and more professors hired claim to be atheists.
We have lost the battle in the medical schools, where the vast majority of students work from philosophies of utilitarianism and materialism.
We have lost the battle in the law schools, where natural law is no longer taught, only the idea that law is what governments make without reference to God, or the nature of a human being with a soul.
We have lost the battle in politics, where utilitarianism, totalitarianism, socialism, and communism have gained strength, even in so-called democracies. Look at the laws in the EU in particular countries which have been passed against the majority wishes of the people. Democracy is dead in Ireland, Great Britain, France and many other countries as laws have been passed in the past year against the desires of the majority.
American democracy is dying a death which few notice.
Catholics must think of the consequences of living in a world which denies the supernatural. Catholics need to study Aristotle, and Aquinas. More than ever, we need solidly orthodox Catholic philosophers to be able to evangelize and produce apologetics starting with basic principles.
Catholics need to understand that they will be increasingly derided and marginalized.
The gap widens....
What we are facing is the spirit of the anti-Christ growing in our midst.
Here is one of the readings from today's Mass:
1 John 2:22-28
New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition
22 Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son. 23 No one who denies the Son has the Father; everyone who confesses the Son has the Father also. 24 Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you will abide in the Son and in the Father. 25 And this is what he has promised us, eternal life.
26 I write these things to you concerning those who would deceive you. 27 As for you, the anointing that you received from him abides in you, and so you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, abide in him.
28 And now, little children, abide in him, so that when he is revealed we may have confidence and not be put to shame before him at his coming.
In September, I wrote a series on the philosophies being taught in med schools. Just extrapolate...