Friday, October 25, 2013

Tone Deaf Catholics

I'm worried that my post Madness and Sex - Been There, Done That, and the article to which it links, will dredge up all this Christopher West nonsense again.  And I've really been there - done that!

So I'll try to cut the fanatics off at the pass and sum up my opposition to this weird pop-Catholic "crud" by saying this - the tone is all wrong.  I just read one of West's newsletter articles, and the tone was all wrong.  I tried to describe it in a comment this way ...

I can't help thinking that, for most popularizers of TOB, it's not sex that leads to God, but God that leads to sex.

... the emphasis is much more on spiritualizing sex than on enfleshing a kind of nuptial union with God. If the message of Theology of the Body is that our bodies are made to glorify God, and that the marital act is, in some ways, a sign that points toward union with God - then the emphasis should be on God, not on the sign.

The emphasis is usually the other way around.

Many of the pop-TOB folks do what JP2 never did, use this material almost as a kind of "grooming" behavior - getting us to lower our guard about the one thing that we should be most guarded about, especially in this culture.

Something similar, I think, is happening with Health and Nutrition - which many young Catholics are, apparently, turning into gods.

My friend Sean Dailey writes of some young friends of his, all of whom are Thomas Aquinas College graduates, and who should know better ...

They've made an idol of health. And they are very Gnostic about it, treating their nutrition knowledge like secret revelation.  Getting into Yoga is just taking it to the next level. 

Indeed, Sean's TAC friends are very defensive, refusing even to read articles about the incompatibility of the Christian Faith and Yoga (like this one by Catholic Answers' Michelle Arnold).  They simply close their ears and refuse to admit that there could be any problem with "Holy Yoga", for example, even though that very technique is mentioned by name in this article and soundly critiqued.  They won't engage the issue; they're just stretching and breathing, you see.

And the Westians aren't obsessed with sex - even though West reads sex into everything everywhere - they're just getting off while getting to God - or so it seems.

And everyone's tone deaf.  No one can hear the sour notes.  No one can see where the tune the piper plays is leading them.


jvc said...

I've had a lot of health benefits from improving my diet and nutrition, including helping to alleviate an autoimmune issue. I'll leave it simply as that to remain pseudo-anonymous. I think that people can realize an enormous benefit in health and well-being from watching what they eat and making sure they're getting enough good food while eliminating bad food.

That said, it doesn't surprise me in the least that health and nutrition could be another avenue through which the gnostics have asserted their influence. Chiropractics is very big into this. (I'll share more via email.) I've also seen the same thing your friend is seeing with Yoga. Everybody loves to play with fire and then act shocked when they get burned.

Joey Higgins said...

Good yoga article, thanks for sharing!

I think that there is interest from Atheists and athletes for non-spiritual Yoga because they don't care for the spiritual aspect involved, but see some of the benefit - and want to be around limber women. I've heard several people (men) state that Yoga is basically just about sex anyway, so there's that as well.