Cult of Enlightenment and the Conspiracy Culture

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17 Responses

  1. Han Fei says:

    How would you explain the statements that Christ himself made concerning the Jews? If my memory of reading Olden Genesis Evangelion serves me rightly, they weren’t too flattering. According to Orthodox Christian belief there does exist a Synagogue of Satan, which under the guise of Jewry, carries on anti-christian activity. The source of this notion is none other than the very voice of the Creator.

    Many modern idea systems stem from Jewish origins. For example Heidegger had quite a following among French Jewish intellectuals, who took portions of his philosophy in peculiar ways.

    But I think there’s an element of a misguided morality at work here. If one actually studies Marx and Freud, he would not take them to be agents of evil. Many of their arguments are quite persuasive. It was said of them many times (and I know I’m using weasel words here) that they were trying to describe a version of God within the confines of a modern perception of what is real. In Exodus, some Jews made a golden cow not out of a desire to worship it as something discernible, but to serve as an image in lieu of the actual Deity appearing before them.

    But I agree with you that internet “antisemitism” is extremely stupid, dangerously so even. If you look at RT comments…on second thought don’t.

    • Malić says:

      Jesus never made conspiracy theories. As for his words, well … pick and chose:

      (…) These twelve Jesus sent forth and bade them: ‘Do not go to Pagans, do not enter any Samarian city! Rather go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.'” Mt. 10.5

      No slippery slope quite like interpreting the Bible for the sakes of philosophy of history, which antisemitism in fact is. As for “Synagogue of Satan”, those were “Pharisees the hypocrites”. They were a historical sect (or rather a school of exegesis). The traditional enmity of Christians towards Jews is a religious but also a decidedly historically conditioned one. This means that taking, say, Third century Church Father’s political stance uncritically at this day and age is rather ill advised. Although “The Synagogue of Satan” was also a popular Protestant term for Catholic Church, also.

  2. Martin says:

    I very much enjoyed watching the lecture by Dr. Hagemeister. He is clearly a gifted and dedicated historian.

    I also very much appreciated your comments.

    It seems to me that a trap is being set for Jews once more, through the equivalence being made between anti-Zionism and anti-semitism, and the prohibition of criticism of Israel for this reason. Much evil is hidden behind this equivalence, and it cannot possibly have any other long term outcome than to isolate Jews and make them a focus of hatred.

    Of course leading Zionists understand this and perceive the hatred as useful to their cause. Indeed ethnic and religious separatists of all varieties are fond of quoting each other, to show how evil the other groups are, and how right they are to wish to annihilate them. This is the divide and rule of humanity.

    One conspiracy mentioned in the Protocols of Zion is that of money and banking, and how it is used to oppress and control the world’s population. In my opinion this is a demonstrably real aspect of our lives. As for how Jewish it is, that is beyond my experience. I would guess that it has about as much to do with the average Jew as it does with me, which is to say not very much.

    • Malić says:

      Regarding banking, I must say that I generally find that this is often taken as a cornerstone of conspiratorial world view, whereas I really don’t find it that plausible. Usury was denounced as unnatural by Aristotle on strictly metaphysical basis before Christianity, yet it was not deemed as “The” sin – one could say that isolating one aspect of evil is a kind of “porneological discrimination”; all other evils should have a right to object. I wouldn’t be surprised, therefore, that there are SJWs, antisemites and alternative media in Hell, hotly (how else) debating the issue.

  3. Brent says:

    I hate how Italians are always associated with the Mafia. It’s a totally anti-Italian and not even funny. It’s disgusting how many movies have been made about this ethnic group of people and their links to organised crime. It’s basically what brought Musolini to power and made him persecute all those Sicilians. I feel even more sorry for Sicilians because everyone would think you know someone in the mafia. So stupid!
    Italy nets mobsters controlling bakeries, funerals, and migrants
    Anti-mafia police have seized 50 million euros in mafia assets and detained more than 160 people in Italy and Germany, accusing them of running a huge mob-controlled empire involving everything from bread and wine sales to funeral services, migrant housing and garbage recycling.

  4. Ante says:

    I don’t hear anything about debunkers, whole speech was really just about antisemitism.

    Anyhow, here’s a couple of questions:

    First, in your reply to Han Fei you said: “The traditional enmity of Christians towards Jews is a religious but also a decidedly historically conditioned one. This means that taking, say, Third century Church Father’s political stance uncritically at this day and age is rather ill advised.” So in principle, you wouldn’t oppose enmity towards the Jews provided conditions were met?

    Second, you said how talking about things that aren’t antisemitic at all gets one labeled as an antisemite. Don’t you think that this in itself gives certain credence to antisemitic ideas? Which doesn’t necessarily make them true (isn’t it funny how this one subject always requires these caveats even when having an honest conversation) but which does make it seem like there really is something with the Jews and their influence on society that is decidedly different to that of other people.

    • Malić says:

      Debunkers cling to “Enlightenment”, that was my point. This is their blind spot and it is, in my opinion, an ideological one. Therefore, they have to splice antisemitism on original conspiracy theories to preserve the dogma. For instance, Eco never replied to Hegmeister’s emails about “Prague Cemetery, where professor pointed out that, whereas “Protocols” are indeed not a document but a work of literary plagiarism, they were not originally produced by Russian secret service and that Sergei Nilus was in fact not an antisemite in the European sense of the word, but Russian Orthodox publicist who believed in the philosophy of history where Jews will eventually be converted to Christianity. This is very telling, because it does not take nothing away from the vile intent behind the publication of the book, but only somewhat exculpates the enemies of Enlightenment.

      This is a prevalent blind spot in the West and is a part of ideological reason why debunkers of Dugin and alt right are failing miserably – they don’t want to let go of the error that modern man is a product of linear progress which necessarily entails things like gay marriages, PC, etc. This is simply a delusion of ideological character which gives their enemies all the ammunition they need and creates the illusion of the need for either-or mentality.

      As for conditions of me becoming hostile to the Jews … well, if I were to be stoned like st. Stephen was, I assure you that my dead hand would still be pointing its middle finger in the direction of my executors. Yet I don’t think anyone is going to stone me any time soon. The other thing is, no one will start the Pogrom either. What I’m pointing out is that the whole thing has been blown out of proportion. Holocaust is made into civil religion – which paradoxically empties the real historical event of its true content and automatically provokes revisionism – of what Americans call liberals and it is a part of EU founding narrative, but not the most significant part. I don’t really think that Jewish people had that much to do with this. Rather it was a pursuit of ersatz religion for atheists running the show. And by doing this, they’re the ones offending the victims far more than anyone else. I think Norman Finkelstein demonstrated this very aptly.

      I think that history of Jews in Europe is an extremely convoluted and well documented one, and it requires a lot of study to come to a reasonable opinion. I never did that thorough study, but neither had those that demonize the Jews. I know however that at the inception of conspiracy outlook they never came into focus although there would be no danger for people like Barruel or Robison if they did. Both debunkers and proponents of those people try to tie them to antisemitism for what seems to me to be the same reason: to prove that there is a metaphysical enmity between races that can be laid to rest either by destroying one ethnos or talking all ethnic groups into erasing their differences. If this is true, both camps merit a measured but resolute display of middle finger.

      Anyways, most of the conspiracy theories today can be traced back to Rosenberg or, further, to the likes of Nesta Webster. Therefore, they’re easily co-opted and directed by Nazi elements.

      Original ones, however, were something different. That was the purpose of this podcast.

      • Ante says:

        Ok I understand now your point with debunkers. I think you haven’t really given sufficient weight to it in the talk because antisemitism takes the main spotlight volume-wise and remains too entrenched in the memory after listening.

        You really think Jews didn’t have that much to do with Holocaust being a civil religion? I get the atheist need for ersatz and there’s much to this, but does this negate Jewish complicity? It isn’t exactly mutually exclusive. This can indeed offend the victims, yet neither this is a proof or no Jewish complicity – look at Jasenovac. It is Serbs claiming the numbers of 700 000, 1 million and even more. It is they who turned it into a joke by talking about it every day like it’s some sort of a slasher horror movie they’ve just seen and are retelling the goriest episodes in excited childish fashion. It is a similar case to Holocaust. Nationality of victims whose memory is offended being same as that of offenders isn’t something impossible.

        Finkelstein has been proclaimed a Holocaust denier by the ADL. He lost his job under the pressure of Jews. I haven’t read his Industry but I can imagine more or less what it’s about. From what I understand his parents are both Holocaust survivors. It is an absurd claim that he would be a denier, yet here we are.

        I distinguish between antisemitism in the sense of literally thinking every Jew is evil because of being a Jew – which is something frequently met on youtube comments and alt right websites – and “antisemitism” of being wary of Jews in general because suspiciously many of them tend to have qualities and are prone to activities that are immoral, subversive, exploitative etc. A simple case of erring at the side of caution. The second strain I really don’t see being proven as unreasonable any time soon.

        • Malić says:

          When Hilberg announced to his then mentor Franz Neumann that he wants to write a study on the destruction of European Jews, he was warned that he’s playing with fire. That was in the Fifties USA. The political climate was such that pissing off West German allies was not really advisable. He never did accept the term “Holocaust” himself and was the endorser of Finkelstein’s research when it first came out.

          If Israel haven’t become the foothold of USA in the Middle East, I don’t really think you would be hearing much about destruction of European Jews nowadays.

          As for ADL et al, I don’t really see those institutions as anything but pressure groups. So its mutual agreement obviously. But this doesn’t exculpate the idea that one single ethnicity is doing the devil’s work in this world. That’s scapegoating. And most of the criticism of Jews, Jewish culture, etc. you’ll find today in “alternative circles” is thinly veiled scapegoating.

          I find this abhorrent and rather anachronistic, let alone ironic. When you read supposed authors of “Protocols” pointing out the division of labor as a method of manipulation and remember that Henry Ford, the beneficiary of the most dehumanized division of labor at the time, endorsed the book as gospel truth … what can you say?

          Anyways, original proponents of the idea of conspiracy never endorsed this and they could have without any personal danger. That’s all there is to it in this little rant of mine. The bigger questions are meant for bigger rants.

          • Ante says:

            Scapegoating is certainly dangerous, mostly for the scapegoaters as you said below, this is true. Speaking of which, I got to point out that your chosen method of persuading them by invoking Hitler won’t have much of an effect. People like that tend to either admire him and will be delighted by the comparison or consider him to be a Jewish or some other sort of a plant, depending on their political leanings.

  5. Han Fei says:

    You know Mr. Malic, I find it quite surprising to see a white European take such a strong position against antisemitism, leading me to assume that either a) your strong Catholic convictions lead you to defend those who appear to you as the sufferers of an unjust persecution or b) you are Jewish. In the latter case it is understandable that a member of a persecuted group would seek to defend himself and his kind from libelous accusations. But if it’s the former, keep in mind there are always people who seek to take advantage of that sense of compassion.

    Furthermore given the current circumstances prevailing across the world, I don’t think that the Jews need defending. It was relevant to stand up for a victimized group back in 1930, when there existed states whose official ideology was ethnic cleansing and overall thinking of the people favored radical solutions. Nowadays when moral distinctions are muddled and acedia prevails in society, I don’t see how this kind of Anglin antisemitism accomplishes anything other than play into the grand victim-victimizer narrative peddled by… I won’t say Jews partly because I am not so certain of the axiom of this narrative’s authors having something to do with a particular ethnic identity. But certainly I see no threat to the Jewish community manifesting from phantasmal narrations even whose authors in all seriousness, do not truly believe.

    In the game of weiqi there is a saying that the advantage is to the onlooker. I consider myself to be one with concern to this issue of conspiracy theories and their inevitably racist connotations. To me it seems primarily a Western phenomenon to uphold that a despised racial group actually happens to stand at the top of the society’s decision hierarchy. I do not claim to have as much knowledge as an insider to the European ethnos- my ignorant remark about the Bible notwithstanding my initial intent to comprehend the religious Christians’ motivations towards virulent conspiratorial antisemitism, especially among such deeply devout figures such as St. John of Kronstadt and Corneliu Codreanu.

    The question of antisemitism is not so interesting to me as the question of the background of ideology it presupposes, whether it be racial naturalism or some sort of metaphysical ethnic struggle. The question of Nazism is not so important to me as the question of what will be the yield of the ordo ab chao outlook, or the “game of pretend” that its modern adherents undertake in order to reach their specified goals.

    • Malić says:

      The reason why I’m addressing this is rather for the benefit of those who are scapegoating then those who are “scapegoated” – because they really are in no danger. The former are. But the real gist of the matter is bringing nuance in this conspiracy theory business. Antisemitism was not a part of it originally and both debunkers and proponents act as if it was.

  6. Scripta Manent says:

    Perhaps the gnostics invented the Jewish conspiracy to hide their own trail?

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