The current crisis over the Coronavirus outbreak is a telling reminder of our fragility in the face of fundamental reality.
We have grown accustomed to living in a world where we are insulated against the fundamental truth about our fragility. In our urban, technological world we can have everything we want – we think that we can live without pain or inconvenience. When we do experience pain or inconvenience, we have THE RIGHT not to feel pain or inconvenience.
That is the problem. We want to play at god; we convince ourselves that we are now our own gods; we will truck no challenge to our independence and the idea that there is a Being out there with ultimate control is risible. We have determined that the world is merely Material, and that we are merely Material beings. We are just a collection of atoms and molecules; we have no soul, no spirit, and certainly no Creator.
We can concoct our own answers to the problems of our existence.
We deceive ourselves and become incapable of asking the appropriate questions, and so arriving at the right answers.
Allow me to pose a pertinent question regarding this current crisis, and answer truthfully.
How did it come about ?
The basic facts are these:
- The disease was present in a particular animal
- In their quest for yet another form of sensual gratification, human beings treated this infected animal as a delicacy to eat and thereby exposed themselves
- The disease having entered humans, the authorities succumbed to denying the truth, a primary manifestation of the oldest disease known to mankind – SIN ie rebellion against God and his law
The Chinese authorities suppressed the knowledge of the disease. Witnesses have declared that one of the first doctors to identify the disease as a new threat was obliged to apologise and sign a written retraction. The doctor, an ophthalmologist, was encountering the problem and expressing concerns back in early December 2019. He has since died after becoming infected himself.
The presence of the disease as a natural phenomenon WAS containable. But the denial allowed it to propagate dangerously. First they denied it; then they played down its significance, all the while playing up their policies of containment and treatment even though it was already out of control.
The fundamental question the authorities asked was:
“How will this make us look ?” [VANITY]
The question should have been, “What do we need to do to protect our fellow human beings ?” [LOVE]
Their godless, Materialist, Totalitarian religion could only make it worse. Their belief in Man’s autonomy and supremacy facilitated their self deception and foolish denial.
True religion, of course, challenges our shortcomings as human beings. It challenges us with the fact that we are not god, and that we are fools if we think that we are. It tells us what we need to know and do, personally, in order to live harmoniously with God, with ourselves and with everyone else.
The Christian religion insists on the Truth. Tell the Truth. Don’t lie. Don’t be frightened by the fear, shame and pride you find in yourself – sin which tempts us to cover up the Truth. Lies destroy trust; they break up relationships. They poison the atmosphere. They misdirect us away from the real and appropriate answers to problems.
Christianity teaches us that we each have a responsibility to tell the truth, for everyone’s sake. A responsibility which goes beyond our own perception of our own interests; which goes beyond official demands; which goes beyond the threat to our reputation or our interests. Which goes beyond what any State has a right to dictate.
A duty to tell the truth, regardless.
But what happens when the State becomes the source of Truth ? When the State says that the State knows best and that no-one may disagree ? That you do not have the right to speak the truth, indeed that to speak the truth is a Sin ?
We have, then, the denial of true religion’s purpose: to teach us how to live our individual lives properly and responsibly so that we can all live together in society harmoniously.
We suffer today from Religious Politics – an unnatural confusion of Religion and Politics.
This artificial and political mix of what should ordinarily be distinct activities and thinking elevates the Materialism of our age into God. Since the Enlightenment, a materialistic and de-spiritualised conception of our existence has gained ascendancy. It is assumed to be The Truth. There is now no God, no Creator, no Sustainer, no Judge of our actions, no Objective Moral Code.
There is now no personal accountability for Truth to the Objective Source of Truth. There is now no King of kings, and Lord of lords Who watches over all, and Who requires all men everywhere to answer primarily to Him – not to the State, not to self or self interest – but to Him Who knows all things and Who will reward or punish accordingly.
He Who instructed:
THOU SHALT NOT BEAR FALSE WITNESS
This was once fundamental to the culture of the English speaking and European nations. We all understood that we each had an over-riding responsibility to tell the truth. Regardless.
But the God denying new religion of Materialism teaches us that our experience is the truth. What we perceive and desire is the truth; objective truth no longer resides outside ourselves in the omniscient God, but within self centred and sin-sick Man.
We can want what we want, without penalty. We can smear our neighbour and we can lie about ourselves to get a job, a contract or enhance our reputation. We can make reality go away.
And democratic politicians have become the Priests of this Cult. The exemplars and teachers of the politically correct Code.
This new religion is very religious. It trades on zeal, it trades on conformity, it trades on rectitude, it trades on justice. It trades on our religious instincts.
But it fails the true test of religion.
Does it civilize us ?