Some might think I am exaggerating, that I am inflating or warping reality to defend my own threatened cultural preference and religious worldview. They may be right but I don’t think so.
Cultures do change with time. I recognize that. But most of the time that change happens slowly and naturally and in three typical ways.
One of the ways that cultures change naturally is from Inventions. New technology, like the television or the automobile, will have unintended consequences on a culture. The television, for example, changed family patterns but the car changed entire city and transportation patterns.
Culture also changes with Discoveries of new knowledge. Medical discoveries, for example, have lengthened the average life span which then naturally changes the culture as the age demographics changes.
And culture will also change through a process known as Cultural Diffusion. This cultural phenomenon occurs when two or more cultures live together or in close proximity of one another. Objects, holidays, food, religion and other ideas from each culture are slowly adopted by the other. The United States is a perfect illustration of cultural diffusion as it is made up of peoples and cultures from all over the globe.
These three processes are considered normal, natural changes in culture. And by that I mean the changes takes place without intent or design. They just happen as a result of historical and natural forces. I propose however, that we are now experiencing something in America that goes far beyond what would be considered normal cultural change. It would, instead, be rightly called a Cultural Transformation.
I believe we are witnessing a significant, transformational shift in our culture. I also believe that because the changes I am seeing are the results of internal, not external pressures and they are more intentional than natural - in other words, the changes we are seeing are purposeful. It’s by design.
Postmodernism is a departure from modernism, which was the worldview that gave us the discoveries and inventions that changed the culture into which most adults grew up.
But postmodernism is more than just a departure from modernism. It is a philosophy that says absolute truth does not exist. Supporters of Postmodernism deny long-held beliefs and conventions and maintain that all viewpoints are equally valid. This view of the world has both wide and long term consequences in both the arenas of science and religion.
At the very heart of Postmodernism is the concept of Relativism.
Author and director Harold Pinter, succinctly describes this strange ideology when he is quoted as saying, “There are no hard distinctions between what is real and what is unreal, nor between what is true and what is false. A thing is not necessarily either true or false; it can be both true and false.”
They are generally two types of relativism. There is Moral Relativism which says no one can really say what is right. And there is Epistemological Relativism which says know one can really say what is true.
A culture void of any moral compass or any barometer to measure the validity of truth is a culture capable of doing anything - and a culture that can do anything is a culture that will do everything. I think we are already seeing the poisonous fruits of this worldview in our culture. It is transforming our society from within.
Beside Relativism, Postmodernism is also transforming our culture by means of Determinism.
Postmodernism also promotes the idea of determinism, or what its critics would call fatalism. Determinism is the belief that behavior is beyond personal control. Behavior is beyond personal control because it is either biologically, environmentally or culturally established.
Biological Determinism is the theory that almost all human attributes and behaviors are innate and cannot be altered. How many times have you heard that alcoholism is genetic? Well, it seems there is now a gene for just about every human behavior: a fat gene, a sexual addiction gene, a gambling gene. I’m sure you get my point.
Can you see how this plays into the narrative of Relativism that there can be no moral judgement? After all, if a persons behavior is biologically determined, how can we judge that behavior as wrong or bad?
You can also see how this is feeding the over reliance on medication to control behavior. We now have names for all sorts of behavior and medications to counter them.
There is also Environmental Determinism.
Poverty is probably our best example. Poverty is a condition that is often blamed on environmental determinism. The actions and attitude of the poor are seen as natural consequences of their environment. Change where they live, the theory goes, and you will change how they live. Of course, we know this doesn't work but fortunately for the determinist, they have other scapegoats they can blame.
And then there is Cultural Determinism.
The feminist would use this to say that gender is culturally determined and that masculinity and femininity are merely social constructs and if they are social constructs then they can be deconstructed.
I find it incredibly ironic that the one place where genetic or biological determinism actually exist, is the one place post modernism wants to deny it.
Radical feminism is a huge branch on the post-modernity tree. It is especially poisonous to our culture because it actively seeks to restructure society, especially traditional roles for men and women. The good relativist that they are, they reject all gender roles, especially for women. There has been a lot of press lately about the so called war on women, and of course that is constantly fueled and stroked by the feminist, but in truth there is a war on boys by those who don’t want boys to grow up to become men and you’ll see why in a minute.
Postmodernism believes we can not say there is absolute truth and that everything is relative and so you can not judge others behavior but at the same time they seem to cause a great deal of conflict and division. Why is that?
It certainly demonstrates the hypocrisy of postmodernism as a whole but particularly the tenets of relativism and determinism. If there is no absolute truth and every behavior is determined then why do they get so upset at conservatives and traditionalist who hold to a moral order? But the conflict you see coming from these groups is part of the philosophy they adhere to.
Postmodernist are heavily influenced by a sociological perspective known as Conflict Theory. For a group that puts so much stock in relativism they sure do hold fast to this theory as settled science. The major contributor to Conflict Theory was Karl Marx.
Conflict Theory is the basic tenant of communism. But you don’t necessarily have to believe in communism to believe in conflict theory. Communism is just one well known branch of this theory.
According to conflict theory, inequality exists because those in control of a disproportionate share of society’s resources actively defend their advantages. The masses are not bound to society by their shared values, but by coercion at the hands of those in power. Groups and individuals advance their own interests, struggling over control of societal resources. Those with the most resources exercise power over others with inequality and power struggles resulting.
Conflict Theory gives great attention to class, race, and gender because they are seen as the grounds of the most pertinent and enduring struggles in society. That explains the war on boys and the desire to raise and educate boys more like girls. It is the feminist answer to what they see as a power struggle between the sexes.
Today, conflict theorists find social conflict between any groups in which the potential for inequality exists: racial, gender, religious, political, economic, and so on. Conflict theorists note that unequal groups usually have conflicting values and agendas, causing them to compete against one another. This constant competition between groups forms the basis for the ever-changing nature of society.
Critics of the conflict perspective point to its overly negative view of society. For example, Conflict Theorist even see charity in negative terms. Conflict theory ultimately attributes humanitarian efforts and altruism to capitalistic designs to control the masses, not to inherent interests in preserving society and social order. They even attribute concepts like democracy, civil rights, and other positive aspects of society and means of controlling the masses.
This seems strangely familiar to the political thinking of our president, members of his cabinet and leaders in both political parties.
I don’t think it would be technically correct to say that the president is a communist but I have no doubt that his sociological views are strongly influenced by Conflict Theory and that his worldview is more postmodern than anything else. He comes from an academic tradition that is known for teaching and subscribing to these viewpoints. In fact, a survey a few years back, of professors of sociology showed that a majority of them favored Conflict Theory over other sociological theories to explain social problems.
Most Americans have probably taken a psychology course in high school or college. If not, they still know more about psychology than sociology. That may explain why most Americans know something is wrong but can’t quite put their figures on the issues.
Emile Durkheim, (read our post on The Durkheim Constant) is considered the father of sociology. He predicted that sociology, or what he called the new science of society, would give rise to a new powerful group of what he called “social priest.” These social priest would replace the religious priest because they would discover the laws of society and once in control of those laws they would be able shape society in any way they wanted to. In many ways he was right. That is exactly what is happening.
Think about it. If a group of people wanted to transform a society and reshape into an egalitarian uptomiam based on their own ideas of what that should look like, what would they have to do? They would have to gain control of the institutions of society, the institutions that form and maintain a culture.
Sociology teaches that there are six main social institutions. These institutions perform basic functions necessary to maintain a society's culture: Family, Church (Religion), Schools (Education), Business (Economics) Government (Politics), Media (News, Information, Entertainment)
Which one of these social institutions would be the easiest to gain control?
Media. It’s not only the easiest but the most effective way to begin the transformation. If you control the news and information you have power. Remember the saying, “knowledge is power.” But in todays society, the best way to control the message is to control the entertainment industry.
David F. Wells, in his book No Place for Truth, writes “In our postmodern culture which is TV dominated, image sensitive, and morally vacuous, personality is everything and character is increasingly irrelevant.”
In our entertainment obsessed society we will watch and listen to anything that keeps us entertained even when that entertainments justifies attacks on traditional moral principles on the basis of it being art. David Wells explains why someone like Lady Gaga is so popular yet so counter to building a moral culture. Our society has been captivated by personality but not character. Rember, to the postmodernist, character is not set in absolute truth but is anything we want it to be. So character traits give way to entertaining personalities.
After the entertainment industry and news media, you would want to get in control of the schools because they are the keepers a culture's history, tradition, and knowledge. But the best way to get the schools is to hold the reins of government power. Why? Because government controls the public schools. And of course, government writes and enforces laws that controls society.
Which of these social institutions then is the hardest to control?
The family and the church. It’s not so easy to take control a religion but its important that they do because that is the source of a cultures morality. Change the religion and you change the moral code. But the main target, the real target, is and always has been the family. The family is the basic unit of society and they still have the most influence on children and children are the future.
It’s also difficult to control business, especially in a free enterprise system like we have here in United States. So, if you can’t control business and commerce then next best thing to do is destroy it. Use political power to weaken the economy making it harder for business to have a power and influence. Then use political power to regulate them into submission when they don’t conform to the desired changes.
I think that ii happening to the family in a similar way. If they can’t control what the family teaches their children then promote policies that breaks the family up and thus expose the children to greater government access. Getting the family dependent on the government is another tactic that seems to be working well for them.
I know all of this sounds rather conspiratorial on my part but I do truly believe that the forces of postmodernism, aided and assisted by the social elites in government, academia, and entertainment, are systematically dismantling our Christian based culture and rebuilding a new one in the image of their liking.
Conflict Theory gives rise to three other really bad ideas. These ideas and their corresponding attitudes and behaviors is what we are seeing a lot of these days in politics, academia, and media.
1. Victimization - the tendency to identify oneself as a member of a victimized group or if not in the victimized group, then advocate and be a champion of that group. Conflict theory is an “us versus them” perspective. The goal of cultural transformation becomes social justice - that is to redistribute resources and power to the victimized groups. Cultural transformation the less messy, less violent way to have revolution.
2. Multiculturalism - the attempt to correct cultural bias by elevating all cultures to equal status. In the United State we use to practice the concept of monoculturalism. It is the “melting pot” that we learned about in elementary school. It is the meaning of the latin phrase found on our coinage. But monoculturalism - from many one, has given way to multiculturalism which see society as a crazy quilt of multiple cultures. If you want to understand the mitigating disaster of multiculturalism as a national policy just visit Europe or the former Balkan states.
3. Political Correctness (PC) - the attempt to remove any stigma attached to a person's behavior or status or identity. Language is important because words are powerful. Political correctness attempts to control the language by changing the words or at least the meaning of words in order to remake society in their version of a just society.
In conclusion: Postmodernism has given birth to a new order of powerful secular priest who lead a social religion which has all the zeal of the evangelicals and all the restrictions on personal liberty of the old puritans.
The postmodernist prefer government rather families and churches to address their social concerns. Through the media and pop culture they preach a new social morality where radical environmentalism trumps human life and climate change is the new apocalypse that we must fear and by fearing keep us in line with the newly established morality.
But in the postmodern world there is no personal morality only social morality. Obsession with expanded gender identities is much like the old puritans obsession with sex. The scarlet letter has been replaced with labels like homophobic and sexist. In a postmodern secular religion abortion is the new sacrament and having more than two children is apostasy.
Personal righteousness, a noble goal for any puritan, looks very different under the new secular religion. Owning a Prius, celebrating same sex marriage, protesting nuclear power, or demanding open borders is evidence of the new social righteousness.
The puritan notion of charity has been replaced by big government, hard work has been supplanted by entitlement, and chastity is called bigotry. Social Justice, is not just a catchphrase in this new religion, is the the holy grail.
Of course, the new secular priest, despite their adherence to relativism, have their own inquisitions and crusades. Violate political correctness and you risk the wrath of the PC police. Practice your first amendment right of free speech and promote family values and you just might witness a holy crusade launched against your business. Boycotts, violent protests, and screaming down public speakers they don’t agree with is the postmodern version of the Salem Witch trials.
In a postmodern America the power of the church has shifted to the university where the professors are the new secular priest. The power of the individual has shifted to the government where politicians are the new Bishops and Popes. Mark my words friends, if something like a spiritual awakening doesn’t happen soon, this new secular religion where no one is saved, only lost, and we will all suffer under its tyrannical grip.