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Obama’s Secular Salvation Show

June 9, 2018 Frontpage No Comments

By CHRISTOPHER MANION

Ben Rhodes, a top adviser in the Obama White House, has just released a memoir, mostly a stack of straw but revealing one telling needle.
Rhodes recalls a lame-duck Obama wistfully musing with his staff. “Sometimes I wonder whether I was 10 or 20 years too early. . . . Maybe we pushed too far. . . . Maybe people just want to fall back into their tribe.”
What’s going on here? Did Obama’s fawning advisers wax in the glow — or did some sane secretary call the White House physician? Because this statement is a symptom of a serious illness. Psychiatrists have terms for it — narcissism and megalomania come to mind. But one psychology website offers a truly striking insight in its explanation of the “Superiority Complex Personality” Disorder, or SCP:
“The SCP Disorder is a psychiatric illness in which the patient possesses the fantasy and daydreaming experiences that he is better than other individuals in content as a human being. The patient, due to this false knowledge or delusion, commences to cause disturbance in his milieu against other human beings, which in his unprecedented delusion considers them as worthless or ‘animals’.”
Sounds traumatic indeed. And Obama personifies it. But how was such a dangerous nightmare injected into the “daydreaming experiences” of an American president? Was it his childhood? His education? His neighborhood organizing days? Because somewhere, Obama inhaled, and inhaled deeply. This aberrant notion is not an idle fancy. Both its flavor and its foundation are Marxist.
For the Marxist, the past is evil, but the future — under Marxism, of course — promises to be better. In that spirit, Obama’s notion of the future “10 or 20 years” from now envisions a slowly maturing population that has finally “arrived.”
By 2038, it might have sufficiently “evolved” to the point where folks are intelligent enough to recognize and to acclaim Obama’s superior qualities with a progressive acuity that our own era’s ignorant masses have not yet achieved. Alas, today’s helpless barbarians are simply too backward to know better. (We note the contrast in the dilettante’s dream: Strength — Obama “pushed” forward; Weakness — the Deplorables “fall” back into their tribe.)

Is It Heaven On Earth,
Or Hell?

The eminent philosopher Eric Voegelin classifies such a hubristic vision as a “second reality,” one created and populated by the gnostic savior and the ardent followers who revere his superhuman insight bestowed by an unseen but omnipotent force.
The indispensable Media Research Center archives reveal how just nine years ago, one such Obama acolyte, Newsweek’s Evan Thomas, confirmed Voegelin’s analysis virtually word for word:
On the eve of the 65th anniversary of D-Day, Thomas complained on MSNBC that “Reagan [at the 1984 commemoration] was all about America. . . . Obama is, ‘We are above that now. We’re not just parochial, we’re not just chauvinistic, we’re not just prudential. We stand for something.’ I mean [Thomas continues], in a way, Obama’s standing above the country, above the world. He’s sort of God. He’s going to bring all different sides together.”
For the Marxist, the promise of the glorious future must contain a companion condemnation of the evil past. That ingredient was conveniently supplied by the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Obama’s pastor for twenty years, who famously roared, “God damn America!”
For Evan Thomas and his elite media cohorts, Obama assumed the mantle of God and was going to put that evil — Reagan, patriotism, and America — in the world’s review mirror as Our Leader’s world rushed toward a perfect future not beyond history, but within it — perhaps even in our own lifetimes! (Voegelin’s analytical term describing this power-hungry pathology became a favorite slogan among conservatives: “immanentizing the eschaton.”)
The gnostic temptation is powerful. It has persisted for millennia. Its spirit is so seductive that even our own beloved bishops have occasionally been inspired by its irresistible aroma.
Consider Atlanta Archbishop Wilton Gregory, one-time president of the USCCB. Just a week before the 2008 election, Archbishop Gregory wrote: “Far longer than the Declaration of Independence, the Catholic Church has placed life first among those rights that are therein described as inalienable — no matter what some people may have recently suggested regarding the Church’s teaching on human life.”
Sounds wonderful. But when Obama defeated the pro-life John McCain a week later, Archbishop Gregory hailed the victory of the most pro-abortion presidential candidate in history as “a great step forward for humanity and a sign that in the United States the problem of racial discrimination has been overcome.”
This should not surprise us. Consider: The USCCB’s voter guide for the 2008 elections, Faithful Citizenship, specified only two “intrinsic evils” of which Catholics should take special notice when considering how to cast their ballots — abortion and racism. Given the virtually unanimous celebration of Obama’s victory at the USCCB meeting in November 2008, it is apparent that, while our shepherds might have said that, they didn’t really mean it.

The Perennial Temptation

Redeem the world here and now. Empower a secular godling. The temptation is powerful. But why would so many souls embrace this fantasy that Socrates calls the personification of a crazed nightmare?
Well, wandering aimlessly in a burdensome world, what rootless secular creature would choose barbarity, when offered the chance to be a partner in the building of a blissful future?
The scenario is as timeless as it is common in history. The accounts of Voegelin, Norman Cohn, and Hans Jonas reveal its persistent appearance in Christian history since the early Church — and Pope Francis has just remarked regarding its malevolent influence.
In our own time, Catholics have seen it in the evolving “Noosphere” of Teilhard de Chardin and in the Marxist “Christ as Liberator” in Latin American “Liberation Theology.”
Even today, in the face of the evidence, many North American dissidents cling to their own version. At times it’s pathetically predictable: We are not surprised when, just days after Rhodes’ account of Obama’s dream surfaced last week, a gathering of dissidents at Georgetown University was treated to the observation of one Teresa Maya, president of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious.
“In noting that she approached America today from a migrant’s perspective, Maya lamented the ‘tribal instincts’ that she views as pervasive throughout the nation. Such tribalism has led to a fear of others, that is ‘poisoning our souls,’ she cautioned,” according to one fawning report.
Spoon-fed drivel, dictated by Obama, swallowed whole. The timeless complaint: forget John 16:33. Christ hasn’t conquered the world — but we can.
Well, Sister, Obama’s all wrong but you’re half right. The poison is there, but it’s not in the tribe; it’s hidden in the bribe that Marxism dangles before your bedazzled eyes.
Like Satan’s promise to Eve, Marxism offers us the power to cure God’s imperfect reality and create a more perfect future. But we have to pay the price — our soul. And that’s a deadly poison indeed.

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