Sunday, April 13, 2014

"Gay Marriage" is Not a Cause, but a Symptom

... the historical autopsy will conclude that gay marriage was not a cause but a symptom, the sign that revealed the patient’s terminal condition.

So concludes Rod Dreher in an article on The American Conservative that also includes these tidbits (my ephasis) ...

Gay marriage signifies the final triumph of the Sexual Revolution and the dethroning of Christianity because it denies the core concept of Christian anthropology. In classical Christian teaching, the divinely sanctioned union of male and female is an icon of the relationship of Christ to His church and ultimately of God to His creation. This is why gay marriage negates Christian cosmology, from which we derive our modern concept of human rights and other fundamental goods of modernity. Whether we can keep them in the post-Christian epoch remains to be seen.
It also remains to be seen whether we can keep Christianity without accepting Christian chastity. Sociologist Christian Smith’s research on what he has termed “moralistic therapeutic deism”—the feelgood, pseudo-Christianity that has supplanted the normative version of the faith in contemporary America—suggests that the task will be extremely difficult.

And as for the pro-gay-marriage crowd around us ...

Too many of them think that same-sex marriage is merely a question of sexual ethics. They fail to see that gay marriage, and the concomitant collapse of marriage among poor and working-class heterosexuals, makes perfect sense given the autonomous individualism sacralized by modernity and embraced by contemporary culture—indeed, by many who call themselves Christians. They don’t grasp that Christianity, properly understood, is not a moralistic therapeutic adjunct to bourgeois individualism—a common response among American Christians, one denounced by Rieff in 2005 as “simply pathetic”—but is radically opposed to the cultural order (or disorder) that reigns today. 
 

5 comments:

Howard said...

The widespread acceptance of "gay marriage" is also a symptom of widespread acceptance of materialism -- the explicit rejection that at least some ideas and institutions have a real though non-physical existence that we discover rather than create. The materialist considers all universals to be merely convenient names we use to sort through a complex world; the materialist considers mathematics to be a manifestation of how the human mind works, not of some independent truth. If universals are fuzzy at best, what good are categories like "male" and "female"? If mathematics does not express indpendent truth, how can the Natural Law? And don't be fooled by the fact that we are also a superstitious society. The Ghost Hunters show that superstition can cloak itseelf in pseudoscience so that it is palatable to materialists.

Kevin O'Brien said...

I agree, Howard. It's not only materialism, it's nominalism that makes rational discussion more and more difficult these days.

Sebonde said...

And yet the advocates of ss'm' insist upon the universality of love.

Howard said...

@Sebonde -- Not in the sense I was talking about. They insist that "love" is ubiquitous, but also that it "transcends" form and definition. They explicitly deny that there is a fixed universal standard for love. Love as a fuzzy description they don't mind; love as an ideal that would be recognizable to St. Augustine or even Plato is a different matter altogether.

Sebonde said...

I need some clarification to understand what you mean by "materialism". To my mind "materialism" is the notion that matter is all there is, and I am too entrenched in hylomorphism to understand this notion as anything but utter nonsense. For matter, only matter, and nothing but matter is completely unintelligible--according to a hylomorphic understanding, that is. Therefore, I cannot understand your connection between "materialism" and same-sex "marriage" for I simply cannot understand how "materialism" connects to anything at all.