Wednesday, August 03, 2005

I Know What You Are, But What Am I?

OK, who's this Joe O'Leary?

Found this in a piece of his at Amy's comment box, and thought it fascinating.... A delineation of what he calls "The Rise of the Neocaths."

In the process of defending the Council at the expense of Tradition, O'Leary smacks JP, comparing him to Mao and adopting the viewpoint that "making his voyages the main form of his magisterium, [he substituted] a cult of mediatic images for substantive educative communication."

Fierce. Meow.

And then this long, scathing indictment:

The Neocaths are ill at ease with modernity. They feel they have seen through the myths of secular humanism, and the liberal culture of democratic discussion which they see as relativistic. They bewail confusion and uncertainty and call for a firm voice of authority to put an end to it.

The Neocaths are ideological and political rightists. Issues of social justice never appear on their agendas and Church documents such as Populorum Progressio, Evangelii Nuntiandi, Octagesima Adveniens, Centesimus Annus are ignored. Their papolatry commonly goes hand in hand with Busholatry. They play down papal opposition to the Iraq War, torture and capital punishment. Some may be active on social issues, but in their internet polemics this is scarcely in evidence.

The Neocaths are well organized, and have as yet no equivalent on the Catholic left. They know which lines to push and which to avoid. For instance, they will attack gays with a show of concern for the welfare of their souls, and in harmony with the letter of Catholic doctrine. At the same time they will be found bewailing the demise of sodomy laws.

The Neocaths are very quick to denounce liberal Catholics as heretics. Authority looms very large in their mental world, and is indeed its dominant theme. However, authoritative documents, or early utterances of Joseph Ratzinger, that go against their reactionary convictions will be whittled away. This is notably true of Dignitatis Humanae and Gaudium et Spes.

The Neocaths believe strongly in Hell, and play down the views of Von Balthasar and John Paul II that we may hope the Hell is empty. They insist on the physical pain caused by hell fire. They invoke Hell against liberal or what they call "dissident" theologians and against those they consider sexually deviant.

The Neocaths are joyfully uncharitable in their speech, trampling not only on political correctness but on the laws of libel.

Etc. etc. etc. It's basically what I deal with every day. But still a noteworthy, substantive synthesis.



Blogger Vonshui said...

It appears O'Leary has met Dick Neuhaus...

3/8/05 23:33  

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