Making sense of the present crisis is a daunting task. We face a moral disaster that requires looking beyond the natural plane of policies and petty politics. If we want to find the solution, we must delve deeper into the problem.
There is a powerful means of discernment that needs to be considered if we are to win today’s fight for moral values. We must make room for contemplation.
Is There a Practical Advantage?
One might ask what practical advantage contemplation brings to the table. If contemplation is to “look admiringly at an object”1 and to consider it with attention2, how can it help overcome today’s problems?
Despite all appearances, the value of contemplation has never been greater. As we will see, it is a forgotten tool that can solve the many problems we face.
Contemplation Diagnoses the Revolutionary Disease
A doctor cannot distinguish illness from health if he does not know how a healthy human body works. He will end up treating the disease’s symptoms without addressing the illness itself. Thus, his efforts will be in vain, and the patient will be lost.
Likewise, we cannot diagnose the leftist Revolutionary disease3 that afflicts society without knowing how God intended the created order to be.
If we contemplate the order of the universe as ordained by God, we see in creation a reflection of God’s perfection. Contemplation allows us to understand, to a certain degree, God’s designs for the world.
We come to realize what a truly Christian society should look like and develop a deep love for this ideal. This admiration ultimately leads to an ardent desire to establish a truly Christian civilization.
Only when this desire is born can we see just how far away we are from this ideal. We then develop an idea of how bad things are. We will begin to see, for example, the persecution of the Catholic Church, the destruction of the moral order and the advance of the occult in a different light.
These problems must be considered with deep reflection if we want to get to their root causes. We will see the crisis as a fight between good against evil; God and the devil. Once we realize this, we will be better equipped to obstruct the actions of those who promote evil.
A Safeguard Against Impulsive Reactions
Contemplation also allows us to reject false solutions that only succeed in advancing the devil’s cause.
For example, this contemplation will allow us to construct intelligent hypotheses rather than haphazard musings. We can attack the bad philosophies responsible for the ongoing crisis and not resort to baseless conspiracy theories.
It prevents us from acting impulsively. Strategies will be serious and well thought out. Such efforts are attractive and inspire many to join the fight against the Revolution instead of directing their attention toward a red herring.
Once the problem and solution are carefully identified, we will be better prepared to unite our efforts against the Revolution that threatens us.
Contemplation Helps Grasp the Seriousness of Events
Another temptation is to downplay the seriousness of the present situation. For example, many often employ disproportionate amounts of satire against the left.
Indeed, liberal hypocrisy is often amusing, and it is sometimes good to point out leftist logical inconsistencies.
However, we take a great risk when using excessive levity toward the left. Such an attitude implies that today’s evils are only the result of inept politicians, stupid blunders and mass hysteria. For some, the issue goes no deeper than this.
Contemplation reveals that the crisis is not so shallow. We did not arrive at our present state due to a series of diplomatic, economic or political gaffes. On the contrary, we are facing an intelligent enemy that has been corroding morals for centuries by exacerbating our disordered tendencies toward evil.
In his magnum opus Revolution and Counter-Revolution, Prof. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira reflected deeply on the causes of this dangerous process. He contemplated history relying upon Church teaching, historical evidence and sound logic. He did not deal with the Revolution in a light-hearted fashion but handled it in the serious manner it warrants.
In the book, the TFP’s founder acutely describes the severity of the Revolutionary threat:
“[The Revolution] should not be viewed as an altogether fortuitous sequence of causes and effects that have taken place unexpectedly. Already at its inception, this crisis was strong enough to carry out all its potentialities. It is still strong enough to cause, by means of supreme upheavals, the ultimate destructions that are its logical outcome.”4.
Thus, we are not facing an adversary that can be treated with frivolity. Following the example of Prof. Corrêa de Oliveira, we must resort to contemplation in our own efforts if we hope to pose any serious opposition to the Revolution.
Contemplation involves a serious reflection and admiration of the good and a firm rejection of evil. It must play an essential role in analyzing the current Revolutionary process that looks to destroy any remnants of God’s order. Only then can we discover a problem’s root and arrive at a solution.
Our modern culture discourages this behavior. However, to move forward, we must embrace a contemplative approach.
If contemplation continues to be neglected, our fate is sealed.
1. Adolphe Tanquerey, The Spiritual Life: A Treatise on Ascetical and Mystical Theology (Tournai, Belgium: Desclée & Co., 1930), 605.
2. Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, s.v. “contemplate,” accessed January 16, 2023, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/contemplate.
3. The Revolution is a centuries-long process of destruction targeting Christian civilization as defined by Prof. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira in the book, Revolution and Counter-Revolution.
4. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, Revolution and Counter-Revolution (Spring Grove, Pennsylvannia: The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property, 2014), 13-14.