This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

NOTICE:
This Dark Age is now available in paperback on Amazon. The print version is MUCH cleaner than this online version, which is largely unedited and has fallen by the wayside as the project has grown. If you’ve appreciated my writing, please consider leaving a review on the relevant paperback volumes. The print edition also includes new sections (Military History, War Psychology, Dogmatic Theology).

Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3| Volume 4 | Volume 5 | Volume 6

The consolatory principle

It is necessary and proper that metaphysical concepts be adapted to the mentality of the people who are to make use of them, and this is the justification for religions that emphasive what we might call the devotional element, which again emphasizes moral teachings and nurtures what Guenon called the ‘consolatory principle’. We do not deny any of this its place, as it is entirely legitimate. However, it must also be said that the consolatory principle can represent an intellectual distancing, since it is clearly an adaptation for the sake of an emotional need. This also results in greater diversity in religious forms, and necessitates in fact that a specific tradition develop, or allow to develop, multiple and even contradictory teachings at the level of devotion in pursuit of salvation, because not all social groups will find consolation in the same way and through the same teachings. This is why Catholicism has allowed various schools of thought to develop throughout its history, although at this same time this has produced no small amount of confusion amongst the laity, since they can only perceive as valid what applies to the style they have adopted, and inevitably they see other approaches as a denial of their own, and they respond accordingly. Nonetheless, the Catholic Church is right to have accepted and even promoted this, showing that it is too acquainted with the human condition to demand a rigid uniformity at any level other than the doctrinal. This is not evidence of compromise so much as it is a witness to the wisdom of the Church since she must act not only as guardian of doctrinal truth, but also as shepherd of a living flock that is subject to dispersion in accordance with the general climate of the modern world.

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