This extract from CS Lewis's personal letters confirms a suspicion that I've always carried -- namely, that CS Lewis's fondness for Christianity was heavily mingled with cultural sentiment, a bourgeois-minded appreciation for the little things in life, combined with an emphasis on natural law and practical reason which taken together make civil society possible. None of these things are bad in themselves, but when CS Lewis sets them above and over a 'real Christian revival' as he himself admits, then they become a betrayal of Christianity.
Elsewhere (in The Problem of Pain) Lewis says:
So Lewis limits God's sovereign choice and makes Him merely an enforcer of a moral standard that exists apart from Him -- that would also explain why he hates the Barthians.
My problem with Lewis, Chesterton (who has a tiresome cult among the people you once named "Hobbit Christians") and more or less all the Inklings is the creeping suspicion that they are secretly and deeply infected with the typical English vice of believing that Christianity really boils down to being a good Englishman. You can see this in their apparently total lack of sympathy with the reactionary attempts to fight for the actual restoration of some sort of Christendom (did they say anything in support of Franco? Does anyone here know their work well enough to comment?) and their eagerness to adopt the sort of Panglossian celebration of post-1918 mass democracy as the advent of final justice in all matters of human community - which is
what the sort of people who murdered Christendom said to justify their crime. Who can imagine Chesterton or Lewis cheering for the establishment of the Inquisition, or the raising of a new militant order like the Teutonic Knights, with all the latest weaponry? In the present age such things are left to silly neo-pagans like Evola, casting his magic spells in support of Mussolini. In some ways this explains why the Hobbit Christians like the Inklings and their ilk so much, their "just enough of Tradition, but
remember your place
" attitude perfectly encapsulates the Hobbit's desire to practice orthodoxy as a private or familial metaphysical hobby, rather than to live it as deadly serious historical/social imperative with substantial consequences for the destinies of nations and civilizations.
This is a (Calvinistic?) misunderstanding of the issue. All orthodox theology holds that God cannot sin, and that certain acts are sinful of themselves and therefore intrinsically unable to become the content of a divine commandment. This is not a limiting of God's sovereign choice, except in the sense that His own perfect adherence to His nature excludes the possibility of any evil action that would be unfitting to His own glory and purity, i.e. that He cannot will to debase or denature Himself by doing what is against His own holiness. Reading this as God being limited by another entity outside of Himself fails to understand that the issue is what the nature of God implies and presupposes about the actions of God, and that the only limits involved are the inherent characteristics of His own being. Seeing this as exterior control or oppression is like saying that something "forces" a square to have four sides - it doesn't really make sense except at a superficial conversational level.
Excuse me for quoting myself, but I wanted to add something:
It is, as I said above, typical of Englishmen to mistake being a Christian with being a good citizen of their own society. This kind of error is dangerously wrong, but it is especially obnoxious coming from societies that have set themselves so thoroughly against the actual historical substance of the Christian West, of which the chief is England's daughter, America. If it is bad for a Russian or a Spaniard to collapse patriotism and piety into one thing, despite their nations having been suffused with the Gospel and it's forming effect for centuries until it is as much a part of their culture as Hinduism is of India, where do the citizens of some commercial republic founded largely by Deists get off making the same presumption? It's the worst kind of hypocrisy and double talk, and it is especially despicable coming from brain-dead evangelicals and morons - excuse me, Mormons - who talk about the Constitution (which forbids the establishment of religion, something unheard of in previous eras of Christendom) as if it was carried off of Sinai by Moses and then hidden in the Ark of the Covenant until found by George Washington.
I read Lewis when I was a kid (Narnia, which sucked, but I went to Cthlic school). Looked at his essays later in life, along with Chesterton. I would put Chesterton in a slightly different category, along with Hillaire Belloq, who I actively liked OK for his spirited dissections of that sick gasbag H.G. Wells. Chesterton's cousin, after all, was a Mosleyan, so the reactionary spirit is in his family.
I agree completely about Lewis though: Hobbit Christian. He is a small and cowardly man. I have no idea if he was 6'7" and could squat a Buick, but his soul is little and hobbit-like. This spirit lives on in modern American Christianity in the form of Rod Dreher, who is basically a liberal half-woman who is too cowardly to abandon the faith of his fathers. Such Christians want to be liked, and don't want to offend. When such males are all that is left of Christianity in the West, it will die out in a generation or two. Nothing run by women can last. Nothing run by women can ever last. Hobbit Christians are psychological, and probably
I hate liberals, but they have gathered all of the intolerant, combative spirit to themselves, and they will crush cafeteria Christians with a mountain of transsexual 7 year olds and giant buttplugs.
Orthodoxy will live on though. The gulag couldn't kill it. Now it has state backing. Perhaps they will teach the West how to be Christian again, when we're all living in the ruins of Detroit with the hottentots and homos.
As for Evola; what a sad, ineffective, decadent sack of shit. Some of my wingnut pals kept talking about "ride the tiger" and "among the ruins." I even used to know one of his republishers, who went on for months about how mind blowing Evola's books were gonna be. I finally went out and read some after listening to a Bowden seminar on the intertoobs (the Bowden lectures are great stuff most of the time). I am now convinced Evola is only mentioned because they heard about it in a Death and June song. In his photo, he looks like a sad old pervert who can't afford rent boys any more. His books are the sheerest gorp. Mystical garbage, with less substance than an H.P. Lovecraft short story. This is a common pattern for far right losers:
William Dudley Pelley
became a mystic after his silver shirt legions failed miserably, and the fascisti lost the war. Savitri Devi with her dumb assed dravidian Hitler cult; same deal. Some of the Futurists got into literal navel gazing: yoga and occultism.
I can never take the nazi tinkerbells over at Counter Currents seriously, since they keep gabbling on about Evola. It's like pretending Madame Blavatsky was a serious thinker. Shit, even Alaistair Crowley; a man who was a contemptible waste of skin, and whose followers are all fit only for the wood chipper: Crowley has vastly more substance to him than Evola.
Occultism is the refuge of powerless fools who have given up hope in life. I was attracted to this sort of garbage when I was a pot smoking teenager, because "ooo, spooky, and sluts with black lipstick" -and as a result of knowing about it, I have met a lot of such people much later in life. There is a very common pattern among occulty jackasses who are over the age of 20: they are almost always completely ineffectual human beings. They can't pull it together to shave, shower, learn skills and dress well: they must cast magic spells for sex and money. Instead of reading books by wise men, they read books by and for fools, and develop encyclopediac knowledge from secret grimoires they purchased at Barnes and Noble, next to the sections on rolfing, aromatherapy and yoga. They feel very daring because they'd sell their souls to the devil. Most of them have no soul which is worth anything, so the devil laughs at them and keeps them losers. Also: virtually all of them are afraid of their mothers. Which is probably why so many of them are fags and fatties.
Pardon me, I need to go cast the magic spell of squatting two sadfat occultists.
I respectfully disagree. The Gospel explicitly tells us to obey authority, even if it is corrupt.
We must obey corrupt spiritual leaders (the current pseudo-Church):
‘The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat. So you must obey them and do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach.’”
And we must submit to corrupt secular authority:
'Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's'.
Therefore yes, while being a good citizen is NOT the whole substance of being a good Christian, it is clear to me that being a good Christian necessarily entails being a good citizen.
This made me lol. The mystique surrounding Evola - his membership in a death cult, the fact that SS was monitoring him (even the NS didn't trust him) - instilled that same eagerness in me. Thus it was a huge letdown to read the pointless Revolt Against the Modern World. Men Among the Ruins was OK, but there was nothing new or interesting to it. His book on Buddhism was better because he went through the oldest Pali texts and read them from a non-Christian, non-western Buddhist perspective, although it's unclear how accurate his translations are.