An Hypothesis about the Origins of the Modern Sacrificial Cult

Rhetocrates commented:

I had an unoriginal thought worked out this morning that I wanted to share. Mostly it’s already well-established, but it does go in a slightly novel direction in explaining the ‘holiness’ spiral of modern society.

Modern progressive liberalism (viz. WW2 and after) is a specific negative type of Christianity. That much is obvious. Where our once-for-all and yet repeated-daily Eucharist (Malachi) is the navel and foundation of our religion, the Holocaust is the navel and foundation of modern progressive liberalism (hereafter MPL to save keystrokes).

First, this is specifically a negative type: in the true Passion, the Jews sacrifice the Christ; in the MPL passion, the Devil (née Hitler) sacrifices the Jews. (Other deaths due to Nazi eugenics or concentration or simple war-time conditions or the atrocities of modernist war are simply unimportant to MPL. It’s the Jews who count.)

Further, just as the priest unites the Church with the sacrifice of Christ in the daily remembrance of the Eucharist, the MPList unites the body of those who believe in MPL with the Holocaust through accusations of racism/sexism/etc. etc.

So far, so obvious, and it has been this way since at least the post-War period, though not too much prior to that.

We could also go into an analysis of how Christianity is the fulfillment of paganism whereas MPL is a resumption of that same paganism, as seen in the essential differences of their sacrifice and scapegoating rituals. But that’s been done much more thoroughly elsewhere.

However, the Christian Eucharist must be mediated by priests. The priesthood is hard to get into, and requires all kinds of commitments that make it unattractive, and the ranks of priests are limited by geographic, social, and political considerations. Plus, becoming a priest requires a strong indoctrination as to the nature, limits, and use of your powers, along with a whole lot of oversight.

Contrariwise, the MPL remembrance ritual can be enacted by anyone at any time (subject to certain limits regarding relative social status), comes with no restrictions on its use in the form of vows or prohibited behaviours, and confers social status upon those who do so.

So it’s no surprise MPL is so susceptible to ‘holiness’ spirals. Christianity has many mechanisms in place to interrupt such signals and suppress them, whereas MPL is specifically structured to encourage and amplify them.

13 thoughts on “An Hypothesis about the Origins of the Modern Sacrificial Cult

  1. I think you might like my latest book, “God’s Gamble: The Gravitational Power of Crucified Love.” If you like the Amazon reviews enough to want to read it, let me know and I’ll send you a copy. Keep up the fine work. Greetings to Tom Bertonneau. He has my email address.

  2. Thanks, Rhetocrates. Some initial reactions to this interesting suggestion:

    A quibble: I would not say that MPL is a resumption of paganism, properly so called, because the devotees of that cult do not believe in gods or demons. Not so far as they know, anyway. They serve the demons, but don’t believe in them. Rather than being a resumption of paganism, then, MPL involves its repudiation.

    It seems clear, now that you have pointed it out, that the scapegoating of the MPL cult is motivated by an urge to expiate the collective guilt of genocide, and to prevent any recurrence thereof by destroying anyone who appears to notice that there are really such things as genoi. Under the common complete incredulity in the supernatural, of course, no such expiation is ontologically possible or conceivable. So the maw of the cult is insatiable; the sacrifices can never cease.

    With the insight that you have offered – maybe others have discerned it, too, but if so I have not read of it – *two* sacraments of the modern cult of Moloch have been identified. The immolation of victims who notice the real existence of genoi is the counterpart of the Eucharist. Abortion is the counterpart of baptism.

    The devotees of MPL are of course right that genocide is a supremely horrible sin. It is the acme of murder. But obviously there is no way that the sin of unjust ostracism can expiate the guilt of the sin of murder.

    On the theological metaphysics of the MPL, there is no such thing as sin in the first place. There is rather only stuff happening for no reason. So on its own ontology, the whole cult of MPL is insane.

    A most interesting insight, Rhetocrates. I’ll be surprised if no more stuff occurs to me in thinking about it.

    • Is this what you mean?

      Latin : gens, gent-is f.
      English : family stock/clan/nation/race/tribe
      NOM. gens gentes
      GEN. gentis gentum
      DAT. genti gentibus
      ACC. gentem gentes
      ABL. gente gentibus

      If so then:
      ‘…the MPL cult is motivated by an urge to expiate the collective guilt of genocide, and to prevent any recurrence thereof by destroying anyone who appears to notice that there are really such things as [gentes]’

      …while at the same time attempting to promulgate genocide by extinguishing particular gentes through erasing denying their culture.
      Turkish references to ‘Mountain Turks’ instead of ‘Kurds’ comes to mind,
      or the relentless belittlement of all things Scottish by the British establishment.

      • Is gentes what I meant?

        Well, I meant the same thing that gentes denotes. But I was deriving from the Greek genos. Gentes would have been better perhaps, because the third syllable of genocide is Latin. But either language works in the context.

        … while at the same time attempting to promulgate genocide by extinguishing particular gentes through erasing denying their culture.

        Yes. But to be fair, genocide is a perennial recurrence in human history. MLP is distinguished from all its predecessors only by its conviction that it is itself engaged in no such thing. As I wrote to a client an hour ago, discussing an article he forwarded to me about the current resurgence of nationalism in the Balkans:

        I was interested to see that the article was written on the basis of a presupposition that a multi-national state is to be desired. It is in fact impossible over the long run. All multi-national states have exploded in war, sooner or later, with the result that they fractured into their constituent nations.

        Diversity + Proximity → War. It’s that simple. It’s an iron law of history.

        The true desideratum is peace among nations. This can be achieved only when they are distinct from each other, and predominantly homogeneous within their national borders. Mixing them up is a recipe for disaster.

        If you look at wars throughout history, you will find that they are usually waged between states that want to conquer other nations, and nations that don’t want to be conquered. When the conquest was successful, all such wars ended in one of two ways: either the conquered nation was somehow eliminated (through genocide, or absorption, or assimilation); or they were not, and the multi-national state that resulted from the conquest (such things are often called empires) eventually fell apart, splintered into the nations of which it was originally composed. Such splintering is almost always mediated by war.

        The artificial boundaries and government structures imposed upon Bosnia by the US are bound to fall apart. The only questions are when that will happen, and how many will die in the process. Peace can come to the Balkans only when the various Balkan nations are allowed to express their differences, to separate on account of them, and then to settle down into them. The Serbs must be allowed to be Serbs and to live with Serbs; ditto for the Croatians, the Muslims, and so forth. Until that happens, they will remain in a state of war, or of incipient war. They will never until then be able to relax and feel at home in their homelands.

        More may be required than that, of course, because the Balkans have the unusual problem of a large Muslim sub-population, that is more likely than its neighbours to foment war. Orthodox and Catholics can live as peaceful neighbours, albeit uneasily; but Islam can’t abide Christianity.

        The best thing for the Balkans would be to let the Serbs secede from Bosnia and join with their connationals in Serbia. Why try to scrabble something together that doesn’t want to be together?

        But the International Community doesn’t want that to happen, because it is interested in the elimination of nations in favor of a global world government. It is at enmity with all nations. So it won’t let the Serbs leave Bosnia peacefully. So there will be a war. God send that it is quick, and decisive. If it happens while Trump is President, we won’t get involved to try to stop the killing, with the result that there will probably be a lot less killing.

      • So the noun you mean is: τὸ γένος; τοῦ γένεος
        I wasn’t sure.

        Anyway, I agree. The MLP cult is an exercise in spectacular self-delusion. They claim to practice ‘tolerance’ and ‘inclusivity’, while intolerantly excluding anyone who disagrees with them – unless of course they are afraid to exclude them (eg: militant Islam). It is another suicide cult.

  3. “Christianity has many mechanisms in place to interrupt such signals and suppress them,”

    Likewise every cell in your body has multiple redundant mechanisms to prevent unchecked multiplication, which still have a non-zero probability of total failure, turning one cell into a fast-growing metastatic tumor. God is one of the mechanisms that keeps religion in check.

    Paraphrasing Jim, when God is pushed aside in favor of “the people”, Jews become Bolsheviks, Catholics become Chavistas, Lutherans become Nazis, and English Puritans become modern progressive liberals. In their most extreme forms, these movements look very much alike for the same reason one stage-4 cancer looks like any other: Once an ideology evolves beyond all traditional safeguards, various mutations of it are selected for maximum virulence.

    • A trenchant and insightful analogy, indeed. Once the governors of the cybernetic circuit are removed, it becomes a positive feedback circuit for one factor or another, leading to accelerating dysfunction that ends only with systemic destruction: death.

      This is why we were prevented the fruit of the Tree of Life when we had first sinned; we were given the gift of death because without it, sin and error and pain would compound without limit.

      God is one of the mechanisms that keep religion in check.

      Yes. God is the Limit. It is the transgression of the Law of the Limit that tends toward death.

  4. Pingback: An Hypothesis about the Origins of the Modern Sacrificial Cult | Reaction Times

  5. In the classic theory, scapegoating is a means to discharge intra-group hostility and thereby permit intra-group solidarity. From this it would follow that groups in which hostility/aggression/competition is very high must either scapegoat in a major way or disintegrate. Scapegoating may be a universal tendency in man, but it is not uniformly present.

    Female solidarity obviously requires discharge of the intra-group hostility that is generated by competition for males, and this competition is most fierce after “the wall” and before menopause. In those years the supply of men drops for various well-known reasons, the competition for those who remain is fierce, so what’s a gal to do but put on a pink pussy hat and scream at Brett Kavanaugh, or neoliberalism, or whatever.

    This theory can also help us to understand why “arts and letters” types so often become a scapegoating mob. Our educations system produces more wannabe writers and artists than can possibly be employ, so we have lots and lots of marginal writers and artists working as waiters and baristas. The real cause of their misery is all the other writers and artists who are driving down the price of labor in that sector (and, more importantly, the writers and artists who that are inside nepotistic cartels). So, what’s a starving artist going to do. Well, rage against capitalism, or the banks, or the patriarchy.

    Psychological tests and personal experience tells us that Jews are, on average, pretty “intense.” They have in abundance what used to be called “force of character.” Of course most of this force is spent on the people they interact with daily, which is to say other Jews. Mostly they kvetch about and to each other, and this gets on their nerves. This would cause the group to disintegrate if the irritation were not discharged in the BIG KVETCH.

    I think it is significant that women in secure marriages are far less prone to feminist outrage against some scapegoat. These women are not in sexual competition with other women, and so they have far less intra-sex hostility to discharge. Likewise, artists and writers are less likely to be part of a scapegoating mob when they not “struggling” (struggling to get ahead of other artists and writers, that is).

  6. Liberalism entails progress, so-called. Progress is the theory that perfection is attainable in some future time, but nevertheless in time, in this world, and that such a projected attainment justifies subordinating the past and the present and all of the human lives that they contain to that speculative futural moment, as the mere means to that exalted end. Progress is inherently sacrificial; it sacrifices its victims to the insatiable abyss of a tomorrow that cannot exist and it endows dignity and legitimacy only on the non-existent human lives that will – in the evil dream – inhabit that tomorrow.

    • Progress is the theory that perfection is attainable in some future time

      No, it’s not. It is the belief that it is possible to make the world *better*, not that it can be made “perfect”, which is not a sensible concept for a secular progressive.

      Progress is the theory that perfection is attainable in some future time, but nevertheless in time, in this world, and that such a projected attainment justifies subordinating the past and the present and all of the human lives that they contain to that speculative futural moment, as the mere means to that exalted end.

      I think you are projecting the Christian idea of heaven onto progressivism. The passage above describes the Christian view of the relationship between this world and heaven, at least in my limited understanding. But progressivism is about coming to grips with actual human reality and using our human powers to improve it.

      • I haven’t read the book, so I can’t defend it, but from the Wikipedia synopsis it is a “utopia” based on policies like:

        Federal Incorporation Act, with government and labor representation on the board of every corporation[8][9]
        Public service corporations must share their net earnings with government[8][10]
        Government ownership of all telegraphs[8][11]
        Government ownership of all telephones[8][12]
        Government representation in railroad management[8][13]
        Single term presidency[8][14]
        Old age pension law reform[8][15]
        Workmen’s insurance law[8][16]
        Co-operative marketing and land banks[8][17]
        Free employment bureaus[8][18]
        8 hour work day, six days a week[8][19]
        Labor not to be a commodity[8][20]
        Government arbitration of industrial disputes[8][21]
        Government ownership of all healthcare[8][22]

        Now, these may or may not be good policies, but they aren’t a demand for perfection, they are a stab at creating a somewhat improved set of rules for how society operates. In other words, as far as I can tell it supports my original point.


Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.