Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Cultural Hegemony and Life

This blog is called “New Catholic Culture” because it sees hope in the future of the Church in being able to generate a new culture for humanity. We hope for a culture of life that will recognize each person as unique and unrepeatable. It arises as we take our faith into the world and respond to our reality with the grace of Christ.
One disturbing element in our civilization is the effort to eliminate the voices of those who disagree with the ‘liberal’ ‘post-modern’ agenda. There is an effort to ‘engineer’ a society that presents only one acceptable view and makes it legitimate by preventing all alternatives to it from being heard. Through this process, the responsibility of parents to educate their children is quietly transferred to the corporate giants that manage popular culture and education. We accept expert thoughts and dismiss our own experience. This allows us to be controlled and also seeks to silently destroy the Church. The people behind this effort truly believe that they are doing the right thing and that they are improving the world. Their intentions may be good, but this does not guarantee a good outcome. An honest examination of human history shows that efforts to produce positive changes for society often create the opposite. In this case, those trying to eliminate the Church from western minds do not realize they are destroying the very civilization they wish to preserve. And yet this is the reality.
The cultural environment in the United States today is dangerous. Many people do not realize that Pope John Paul II warned of a cultural hegemony, parallel to the Gramscian concept, present within our culture. Although the Church totally disagrees with Gramsci’s prognosis, it can learn from his diagnosis. The hegemonic position today is held by large corporations that have total control over the content of our conventional media. Even this blog is controlled by Google and its content can be eliminated at any time if they wish to do so. Our environment buttresses the abortion and homosexual culture by continuously presenting its position through schools, television, radio, movies, books, billboards, and all other areas in our civilization. Although EWTN is allowed to broadcast, this is an exception in our wider culture. The point is that there is a culture around us that is not neutral and that subtly seeks to impose its world view. As Catholics, we have a responsibility to search through our civilization and test everything to retain what is good. The problem is that there is so little that is actually good and there are movements to destroy the good that is left. We must be aware of our surroundings.
The point of this entry is not to despair, but to recognize our reality. If we wish to create a new culture, we may not be able to rely on the traditional means used to reach society. We may need to be creative, as saints have been in the past, and find a way to witness to the reality of Christ to a culture that is being starved of the truth.

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