The Atheist Perversion of Reality

April 5, 2009 | Jean F. Drew Posted on Sunday, April 05, 2009 11:10:35 PM by betty boop

The Atheist Perversion of Reality By Jean F. Drew

Atheism we have always had with us it seems. Going back in time, what was formerly a mere trickle of a stream has in the modern era become a raging torrent. Karl Marx’s gnostic revolt, a paradigm and methodology of atheism, has arguably been the main source feeding that stream in post-modern times.

What do we mean by “gnostic revolt?” Following Eric Voëgelin’s suggestions, our definition here will be: a refusal to accept the human condition, manifesting as a revolt against the Great Hierarchy of Being, the most basic description of the spiritual order of universal reality.

The Great Hierarchy is comprised of four partners: God–Man–World–Society, in their mutually dynamic relations. Arguably all the great world religions incorporate the idea of this hierarchy. It is particularly evident in Judaism and Christianity. One might even say that God’s great revelation to us in the Holy Bible takes this hierarchy and the relations of its partners as its main subject matter. It has also been of great interest to philosophers going back to pre-Socratic times — and evidently even to “anti-philosophers” such as Karl Marx.

In effect, Marx’s anti-philosophy abolishes the Great Hierarchy of Being by focusing attention mainly on the God and Man partners. The World and Society partners are subsidiary to that, and strangely fused: World is simply the total field of human social action, which in turn translates into historical societal forms.

Our principal source regarding the Marxist atheist position is Marx’s doctoral dissertation of 1840–1841. From it, we can deduce his thinking about the Man partner as follows:

(1) The movement of the intellect in man’s consciousness is the ultimate source of all knowledge of the universe. A human self-consciousness is the supreme divinity.

(2) “Faith and the life of the spirit are expressly excluded as an independent source of order in the soul.”

(3) There must be a revolt against “religion,” because it recognizes the existence of a realissimum beyond human consciousness. Marx cannot make man’s self-consciousness “ultimate” if this condition exists.

(4) The logos is not a transcendental spirit descending into man, but the true essence of man that can only be developed and expressed by means of social action in the process of world history. That is, the logos is “immanent” in man himself. Indeed, it must be, if God is abolished. And with God, reason itself is abolished as well: To place the logos in man is to make man the measure of all things. To do so ineluctably leads to the relativization of truth, and to a distorted picture of reality.

(5) “The true essence of man, his divine self-consciousness, is present in the world as the ferment that drives history forward in a meaningful manner.” God is not Lord of history, the Alpha and Omega; man is.

As Voëgelin concluded, “The Marxian spiritual disease … consists in the self-divinization and self-salvation of man; the intramundane logos of human consciousness is substituted for the transcendental logos…. [This] must be understood as the revolt of immanent consciousness against the spiritual order of the world.”

How Marx Bumps Off God So much for Marx’s revolt. As you can see, it requires the death of God. Marx’s point of theocidal departure takes its further impetus from Ludwig von Feuerbach’s theory that God is an imaginary construction of the human mind, to which is attributed man’s highest values, “his highest thoughts and purest feelings.”

In short, Feuerbach inverts the very idea of the imago Dei — that man is created in the image of God. God is, rather, created by man, in man’s own image — God is only the illusory projection of a subjective human consciousness, a mere reflection of that consciousness and nothing more.

From this Feuerbach deduced that God is really only the projected “essence of man”; and from this, Feuerbach concluded that “the great turning point of history will come when ‘man becomes conscious that the only God of man is man himself.’”

For Marx, so far so good. But Marx didn’t stop there: For Feuerbach said that the “isolated” individual is the creator of the religious illusion, while Marx insisted that the individual has no particular “human essence” by which he could be identified as an isolated individual in the first place. For Marx, the individual in reality is only the sum total of his social actions and relationships: Human subjectivity has been “objectified.” Not only God is gone, but man as a spiritual center, as a soul, is gone, too.

Marx believed that God and all gods have existed only in the measure that they are experienced as “a real force” in the life of man. If gods are imagined as real, then they can be effective as such a force — despite the “fact” that they are not really real. For Marx, it is only in terms of this imaginary efficacy that God or gods can be said to “exist” at all.

Here’s the beautiful thing from Marx’s point of view: Deny that God or the gods can be efficacious as real forces in the life of man — on the grounds that they are the fictitious products of human imagination and nothing more — and you have effectively killed God.

This insight goes to the heart of atheism. In effect, Marx’s prescription boils down to the idea that the atheist can rid himself and the world at large of God simply by denying His efficacy, the only possible “real” basis of His existence. Evidently the atheist expects that, by his subjective act of will, he somehow actually makes God objectively unreal. It’s a kind of magic trick: The “Presto-Changeo!” that makes God “disappear.”

Note that, if God can be gotten rid of by a stratagem like this, so can any other aspect of reality that the atheist dislikes. In effect, the cognitive center which — strangely — has no “human essence” has the power of eliminating whatever sectors of objective reality it wants to, evidently in full expectation that reality itself will allow itself to be “reduced” and “edited down” to the “size” of the atheist’s distorted — and may we add relentlessly imaginary? — conception.

To agree with Marx on this — that the movement of the intellect in man’s “divine” consciousness is the ultimate source of all knowledge of the universe — is to agree that human thought determines the actual structure of reality.

Instead of being a part of and participant in reality, the atheist claims the power to create it as if he himself were transcendent to, or standing outside or “beyond” reality. As if he himself were the creator god.

This type of selective operation goes a long way towards explaining the fanatical hostility of many Darwinists today regarding any idea of design or hierarchy in Nature — which, by the way, have always been directly observable by human beings who have their eyes (and minds) open. What it all boils down to seems to be: If we don’t like something, then it simply doesn’t exist.

We call the products of such selective operations second realities. They are called this because they are attempts to displace and finally eliminate the First Reality of which the Great Hierarchy of Being — God–Man–World–Society — is the paradigmatic core.

First Reality has served as the unifying conceptual foundation of Western culture and civilization for the past two millennia at least. What better way to destroy that culture and civilization than an all-out attack on the Great Hierarchy of Being?

Thus we see how the gnosis (“wisdom”) of the atheist — in this particular case, Marx — becomes the new criterion by which all operations in (the severely reduced and deformed) external reality are to be conducted, understood, and judged.

Conclusion Marx is the self-proclaimed Paraclete of an a-borning utopia in which man will be “saved” by being reduced to essentially nothing. With God “gone,” man, as we denizens of First Reality know him, disappears also.

But whatever is left of him becomes a tool for social action. He becomes putty in the hands of whatever self-selected, self-proclaimed Paraclete seeking to promote his favored Second Reality du jour (usually for his own personal benefit) manages to stride onto the public stage and command an audience.

Such a charmed person blesses himself with the power to change human society and history forever, to bring about man’s self-salvation in a New Eden — an earthly utopia— by purely human means.

Of course, there’s a catch: As that great denizen of First Reality, Sir Thomas More, eminently recognized, the translation into English of the New Latin word “utopia” is: No-place.

In short, human beings can conjure up alternative realities all day long. But that doesn't mean that they can make them “stick.” Reality proceeds according to its own laws, which are divine in origin, and so cannot be displaced by human desire or volition, individually or collectively.

And yet the Marxian expectation argues otherwise.

Out of such fantastic, idiotic, specifically Marxian/atheist foolishness have great revolutions been made. And probably will continue to be made — so long as psychopaths hold the keys to the asylum.

Note: All quotations from Eric Voëgelin’s article, “Gnostic Socialism: Marx,” in: The Collected Works of Eric Voëgelin, Volume 26 — History of Political Ideas: Crisis and the Apocalypse of Man. Columbia, MO: University of Missouri Press, 1999.

©2009 Jean F. Drew

April 4, 2009