Nothing like starting the day in the darkness with Gregorian chants setting the tone of the soul for the day that is to come.

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“You have to envy a writer like Flannery O’Connor, who saw the enemy clearly, namely a certain sort of triumphant humanism …”

Walker Percy

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Triumphant humanism.  We are immersed in it and yet do not notice, and surely do not examine it.  Walker Percy did in his novel The Thanatos Syndrome and in the first annual Eudora Welty Lecture from which the above words are selected.

We had a look at the sound and appearance of triumphant humanism with the words and person of wimpy Meryl Streep at the Golden Globe “awards” show.  No candidate for the Marine Corps is she.  And oh, so predictively she seized her opportunity to deliver a “morally” conceived political lecture rather than simply accept an award and humbly issue a “thank you” and recede in good taste from the dais.

In her words we see triumphant humanism is a loose and mushy “tenderness” that has supplanted actual moral thought.

Soft and fuzzy is the way of actors and actresses whose job it is, not to think, but rather to memorize other people’s words and recite them.  Having accomplished that, they eagerly warp themselves in self-righteousness and skip right to sharing their ill-formed notions of morality.

That is triumphant humanism: opinion without restraint or study, faith, familiarity with religious narrative, God, or any knowledge about the life of the average person but that which can be gleamed from the roof-top garden of a 6 million dollar, five-story Manhattan townhouse you own and occupy.

In triumphant humanism, the self is far less the self than it has ever been, sincerity is faked, and it can be said of those in its ambit that “deep down inside, they are really shallow.”

Yes, they have the substance of ghosts, the vanished person.  Among the acting-class, they are soon enough “the well forgotten celebrity.”  Sort of like Oakland – there’s no “there” there.  But whimper they will – and endlessly about: climate, nuclear free zones, overpopulation, “the poor,” etc., while happily shunning the middle class and supporting and defending the killing of 60 million children in the womb.  Strange disposition.

Walker Percy nailed triumphant humanism in The Thanatos Syndrome when his character Fr. Rinaldo Smith complains that in contemporary life in America morality has become “tenderness” – and abandoned any reference to justice, or the dignity of life and the human person.

And, in this predicate, Percy has Fr. Smith ask Dr. Tom More: “Do you know where tenderness always leads?” To which, More relies, “No where?” Only to have the Priest respond, “To the gas chamber.”

Triumphant humanism, sans God has but one direction.  We see it in abortion now don’t we.  And in euthanasia.  And hear and see it in wimpy, preachy actresses and others of the Left persuasion who prepare the way for “rationed medical care.”

In the end what we are talking about is this: culture and identity.  Who are we? What have we become without God?

Yes, we have awakened to see it is precisley this struggle – of culture and identity – that is today. 


Question – There are many countries in the world where you can be killed if you are a Christian.  Might it happen here?  What are you apt to do about this?  This is the world we live in.  Do you elect faithful people?  Are you governed by them?  I a time of prosperity it ode snot matter quite so much.  When the pie contracts, the truth become quite important.