commentary: Mightier Than The Sword (Part Fourteen)


John W. Ritenbaugh
Given 05-Sep-15; Sermon #1284c; 9 minutes

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We are not yet done with Ralph Waldo Emerson and his influential effect on life in these United States. He was not a dynamic personality, but there is no doubt he was influential intellectually to other intellectual people.

Transcendentalism never became a great religion attracting huge numbers to its services, but it did attract others positioned in places within the communities who did much to spread its influence where it really mattered. Where it really mattered was in the teaching staffs and administrations of universities. From there, his disgusting beliefs were passed on to the fresh and open minds of young students there to absorb and practice the newest of mankind’s latest researches in the intellectual realm.

I mentioned in a previous commentary that when Emerson was born in the early 19th century, Christianity was about to receive a jolt. The jolt was not like a sudden surge of high voltage electricity zapping one’s body. But it indeed it was a jolt. It was much like being hit in the body during a pillow fight with a fully loaded pillow. That hit might even cause one to lose his balance for just a second, but not near enough to render one out of the game.

This jolt was like absorbing a seemingly non-fatal bullet wound in the body, but unbeknownst to the one who received the wound, it continued seeping blood over a long period of time until the injured one died. In the end, that jolt destroyed the form of Christianity this nation practiced when it was founded. That form died even before the 19th century was over. It continued on, though, in name with a form far weaker.

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago in a commentary on English philosopher Jeremy Bentham that Bentham opened the door in his philosophical teachings, and homosexuality walked through. He did this in a very daring manner, especially considering the conservative times he lived in. Well, Ralph Waldo Emerson was a homosexual, as was one of his most ardent followers: poet Walt Whitman. Both were ardent advocates of its practice.

In his journals Emerson dreamed of what he termed a “tremendous affair" with a college classmate named “Martin Gay.” Have you ever wondered about the homosexual association with the term “gay"? There it is—right there—and it goes right back to Ralph Waldo Emerson and his journals. Emerson wrote poems specifically to evoke homosexual passions. Two hundred years later in our time, the homosexuality culture, based on the amount of attention it gets in the news, appears to be reaching a stage—at least in terms of upsetting the culture—close to that of Sodom.

Today, almost every major television network now features programs that place homosexual behavior in a positive light and some states even require homosexual indoctrination for students in K-12 schools.

But his greatest damage was made against the purity of the Christian religion by means of his thoughts focusing on the elevation of the self and blending those with his Americanization of the Buddhist and Hindu ideas regarding the universe.

I know what I am about to say sounds crazy to level-headed people with a sound understanding of God and nature, but Emerson bought into it as a boy under the tutelage of his aunt and then added his own Satan-addled thoughts to what she taught him. In both Buddhist and Hindu thinking, there is no fundamental difference between that which God and that which is not God. There is no difference between that which is me and that which is you, or that which is good and that which is evil, or that which is true and that which is not true. You talk about confusion!

Perhaps this will help you to see how addled he was. Here is what Emerson wrote:

I, standing on bare ground, my head bathed by the blithe air, and uplifted into infinite space, all mean of egotism vanishes [whenever I am done, you try to tell me what he said!]. I become a transparent eyeball; I am nothing; I see all; the currents of the Universal Being circulate through me; I am part or particle of God.

He and his followers deceived themselves with an outlook on life completely focused on trusting themselves. They lost all truly coherent human thinking, logic, and social interaction.

A more normal practice of Christianity absolutely rejected that extreme but they did gradually accept the overall thought of trusting themselves, and gradually the word of God slipped into being less and less important to the very low level that exists today. Today we call this religion humanism. It is indeed a religion, and it is practiced freely in the United States by an overwhelming number of people.

It is not institutionalized. It has no regular organized meetings; no buildings to meet in on a scheduled basis; no preachers; no choirs; it has no systematized body of beliefs, but it is a way of life in which every person is free to be god by setting his own standards that only he is required to meet. This was Emerson’s ideal.

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