Anybody who knows me knows of my allergy to sentimentality. I don’t know whether it’s a psychological defense mechanism established early in life, or simply my disposition, but it’s always colored my perception. The saccharine navel-gazing of the modern world irritates me, this obsession on trauma and hurt that has coopted all of society’s purposes to that of therapy.
The modern world has erected a new kind of ideal man to be emulated, one that is never offensive, harsh, or noble in any way. An entreating, suplicating, groveling creature called the “nice guy”. His mouth continually vomits out regurgitated platitudes such as “love wins” and “kindness is the mark we leave on the world”. That I’m exceptional in the nausea this pathetic specimen evokes in me is cause for continual astonishment.
Homo patheticus has long been catalogued and observed by naturalists of the human species, most notably Friedrich Nietzsche. My aim here is to simply comment on and make my displeasure known at this new man’s ascendence within contemporary Christianity, an aim no doubt incoherent to someone like Nietzsche who saw Christianity itself as this new man’s birthplace.
Like a bastard son’s unrivaled loathing for his indifferent father, the modern world hates its own antecedent Christian foundation with the painful knowledge of its own illegitimacy and helpless imitation of its most superfluous aspects. Take for example the common appeals to “be kind” or “don’t judge”. Both simply therapeutic versions of Christian morality with the convenient exclusion of the concomitant severity surrounding these appeals. Unfortunately, this adulteration has infected the Church itself in nearly every sect, seen in the inauguration of Pope Francis as well as the gradual deemphasis of harsh judgement in the Protestant chapels.
I don’t think this new development is doing much in the way of filling the church pews, much less maintaining doctrinal integrity. From my own personal experience in Christian circles, those godly men I was told to emulate were uncharismatic at best, and emotionally incontinent eunuchs at worst. More concerned with placating sinners than rebuking them. Obsessed with mercy but not with truth. Don’t forget that Christ also holds a sword! The strength of Christ must once again be lionized alongside his gentleness, and the strong man must once again have ascendence over the weak. Weakness was only ever a virtue in that it precluded hubris; moderns have made it a virtue unto itself. While humans can refrain from judgement, nature can’t and will continually punish the weak for their inadequacy; depriving the weak of the stimulus to promote strength is no favor. Treading down that narrow path requires strength.
“I found that the ‘good man’ is one of the forms in which decadence affirms itself. The virtue of which Schopenhauer still taught that it is the supreme, the only virtue, and the basis of all virtues — precisely pity I recognized as more dangerous than any vice. To cross as a matter of principle selection in the species and its purification of refuse — that has so far been called virtue par excellence. One should respect fatality — that fatality that says to the weak: perish!” — Nietzsche