Blessed be the name of Obama
By Alisa Craddock
“Obama was…blessed and highly favored…I think that his election to the Senate… was divinely ordered . . . I know that that was God’s plan... I think he is being used for some purpose. ” – Bill Rush
“He is not operating on the same plane as ordinary politicians…His instinct for the moment and the times is orders of magnitude more powerful than the experience claimed by others.” –Gary Hart
“He is not the Word made flesh, but the triumph of word over flesh…”Obama's Gift", by Ezra Klein. January 3, 2008.
“Barack Obama is our collective representation of our purest hopes, our highest visions and our deepest knowings of who we are as a people, and as a country…He's our product out of the all-knowing quantum field of intelligence” --Eve Konstantine, Huffington Post February 5, 2005
“[With the election of Obama] Everything's going to be affected by this seismic change in the universe…You'll have to measure time by `Before Obama' and `After Obama’” --Spike Lee, July 10, 2008.
"A light will shine through that window, a beam of light will come down upon you, you will experience an epiphany ... and you will suddenly realize that you must go to the polls and vote for Obama" - Barack Obama, January 7, 2008.
[Emphasis added on all quotes above and below.]
“Is Barack Obama the Messiah?” Apparently, some people believe that he is. Or some kind of Angelic Being. From the beginning, Obama’s campaign has caught people up in a kind of Messianic fervor. Did he tap into the spiritual emptiness of the age and draw the lost sheep to himself through an ingenious marketing strategy? Perhaps people are so weary of calamity and infighting that they will vote for anyone who seems different, anyone who might be able to bring peace—peace from war, and peace at home, peace within. Which brings us to the point of this column.
A few years ago I read a book, written in 1907 by Msgr. Robert Hugh Benson, entitled Lord of the World. Benson’s father had been a member of an organization called the Society for Psychical Research to which belonged many of the liberal elite of his day, men whose influence is still felt in our time. Lord of the World told of the coming of what we Christians call the antichrist and “the Apocalypse” or end of things. But the story does not tell of an apparently divine being who performs the kind of miracles that Christ performed, and there is no 666, no mention of “the beast” so often referred to in “Prophecy” texts written by Protestants. It told, rather, of the rise out of obscurity into American politics of an enigmatic man of such brilliance in the diplomatic arena that he brought peace to a world on the brink of nuclear war. To use Benson’s text, Felsenburgh facilitates “the reconciliation of the world on a basis other than that of divine truth.”
This is a process we can see working in the world today in the advancement of secular ideologies of “tolerance” and “diversity”, combined with a thinly disguised Marxism, which are increasingly hostile to Christianity. Such a reconciliation, without recourse to Christian values, would serve to validate anti-Catholic sentiment and permit a Humanity Religion such as the one described in Lord of the World to emerge. It is taking shape already. But it has not yet reached the status of public policy.
After his incredible work of bringing “peace” to the world, Felsenburgh is offered and accepts the Presidency of Europe, then afterward, he is elevated to Lord of the World.
Before I go any further, I want to make it abundantly clear--I am not trying to cast Obama as the antichrist. I do want to point out the disturbing resemblance between the ecstasy over this man that nobody really knows anything about, in whom, for some reason, people have placed a Messianic hope, and the religious zeal of the populace over the character Julian Felsenburgh in Benson’s book, a similarly obscure American who rises rapidly in American politics and later on the world stage to become Lord of the World. The object of this column, then, is the self-deception of the people who divinize Felsenburgh (and likewise Barack Obama). The picture that emerges is stunningly prophetic, and deeply unsettling. This column is a warning against false Messianism.
I was a newcomer to Catholicism when I first read Benson’s book, and did not recognize the true significance of it. I began to recognize it when I read this column by historian and political analyst Dr. Dennis L. Cuddy. In it, Dr. Cuddy extrapolates directly from the text of the book, and shows the accuracy (even to the dates) of Benson’s foresight. The time the events happen appears to be our near future. Dr. Cuddy suggests that Benson was perhaps not prescient, but was quite possibly relating the timeline he overheard his father and other members of the Society discussing when he was a boy. But there is much more: in 1907, there were no helicopters (the volor he describes is a reasonable approximation to that mode of transport), there were no bombs that could destroy entire towns with one shell, there was no internet. These things, too, are envisioned by Benson, and more. Lord of the World , as he states himself, is his attempt to state the principles he passionately believed to be true, and in the process he gave us a look at our own present and possible future.
Inspired by Dr. Cuddy, I would like to make a few extrapolations of my own from the text of Msgr. Benson’s book, and compare the fever surrounding Obama to that surrounding the character of Julian Felsenburgh, aka “Lord of the World.” But first, let’s examine some excerpts from the book that illustrate parallels with the increasingly secular development of our own world, whereby the groundwork is laid for the coming of the Son of Perdition:
“What was chiefly to be feared was the positive influence of Humanitarianism: it was coming, like the kingdom of God, with power; it was crushing the imaginative and the romantic, it was assuming rather than asserting its own truth…It seemed to be forcing its way, almost objectively, into the inner world. Persons who had scarcely heard its name were professing its tenets; priests absorbed it, as they absorbed God in Communion–children drank it in like Christianity itself. The soul ‘naturally Christian’ seemed to be becoming ‘the soul naturally infidel’”
“...[U]nion was now seen to be better than disunion, and the lesson had been learned apart from the Church. In fact, natural virtues had suddenly waxed luxuriant, and supernatural virtues were despised. Friendliness took the place of charity, contentment the place of hope, and knowledge the place of faith.
“The two Cities of Augustine lay for [us] to choose [between]. The one was that of a world self-originated, self-organised and self-sufficient, interpreted by such men as Marx and Herve, socialists, materialists, and, in the end, hedonists, summed up at last in Felsenburgh. The other lay displayed in the [spiritual vision that Fr. Franklin] saw before him, telling of a Creator and of a creation, of a Divine purpose, a redemption, and a world transcendent and eternal from which all sprang and to which all moved.
“Finally, he expected, Humanitarianism would presently put on the dress of liturgy and sacrifice, and when that was done, the Church’s cause, unless God intervened, would be over.”
This, then, is the landscape Benson expected at the time of the coming of the antichrist. It is not unlike the world we live in today, though probably a bit further along than we are. But everywhere, Christian individualism is under attack. Individualism is now replaced by “diversity”. We are being led to the principle of “sameness”--that is, the enforced acceptance of diversity in all things including moral and religious views, and mutual tolerance to the point of an absolute ideological conformity imposed by totalitarian structures of government—in a word, fascism. Those who refuse to accept the ideology that is value-neutral will be persecuted (as is demonstrated by the increasing number of incarcerations and financial penalties for daring to criticize Islam or homosexuality, among other things). But the fact of greater and greater acceptance of the secular humanist agenda (sometimes mistakenly by poorly catechized Christians) portends the “organism”, the “unity unlike any other” described by Benson:
“There was magnetism in the air. There was a sensation as if a creative act were in process, whereby thousands of individual cells were being welded more and more perfectly every instant into one huge sentient being with one will, one emotion, and one head.”
The stage is thus set for the one who mocks the Christ.
The primary reason to examine this background is that, like many Christians, I have often wondered how a world immersed in Christian prophecy about the antichrist could be duped into accepting him. But the entire secular world is immersed in a conspiracy against each and every tenet of the Christianity, replacing authentic Christian virtues with new secular ones that appear to ape, but ultimately compel a rejection of, Christianity, even a hostility to it. The example I cite most often is “tolerance”, which is a perversion of “charity”. Charity involves a decision for love of one’s fellow man, an acceptance of his value as a human being created in the image and likeness of God, desiring, therefore, his spiritual and physical wellbeing, for the love of the God who made him. Tolerance involves acceptance of behaviors and ideologies. Christians cannot tolerate blasphemy and sin, therefore “tolerance” is at odds with “Christianity”. Since Christianity is “intolerant”, it is deemed hateful, and hateful things will be stamped out, if one takes it to its logical conclusion.
And so it proceeds in Benson’s book as well.
But the figure of Felsenburgh must appear first to validate it all. His appearance, his meteoric rise on the world stage, his mysterious ability to bring peace with the East as the world is on the verge of a cataclysmic war, all lead to his acceptance, just as prophesied. But it is not because they believe he is Jesus returned, but because they believe Jesus was a lie, and that there is nothing but man, and Man has divinized himself. Felsenburgh now appears as the Perfect Man, Divine Man. Here is what people say about him in Benson’s prescient imagination:
It seemed as if his originality lay in his clean hands and his stainless past–that, and his magnetic character…a pure, clean, compelling personality, like a radiant child.
“Felsenburgh was called the Son of Man, because he was so pure-bred a cosmopolitan; the Saviour of the World, because he had slain war and himself survived–even…Incarnate God, because he was the perfect representative of divine man…all faces were turned to that simple figure, as if the hope of every soul were centered there.”
“’I tell you it is not a dream. It is reality at last…’ [Mabel’s] face was transfigured as she spoke. It was as of one who saw a Divine Vision. ‘I saw the Son of Man,’ she said. ‘Oh! there is no other phrase. The Saviour of the world, as that paper says. I knew Him in my heart as soon as I saw Him–as we all did…It was like a glory round his head...It was He for whom we have waited so long; and He has come, bringing Peace and Goodwill in His hands…I can trust Him for all the rest…’”
“He whom she had seen–the Son of Man, the Saviour of the world, as she had called Him –He who bore these titles was no longer a monstrous figure, half God and half man, claiming both natures and possessing neither; one who was tempted without temptation, and who conquered without merit, as his followers said. Here was one instead whom she could follow, a god indeed and a man as well–a god because human, and a man because so divine.”
“The perfect representative of divine man”. Does that not sound like Eve Konstantine’s description above?: “He's our product out of the all-knowing quantum field of intelligence.” A new kind of Messiah for a New Age? A Divine Man?
Viewing the comparisons between the kinds of things said about Felsenburgh with those said about Obama, one has to be a little unsettled. Obama is charismatic. He’s articulate. He’s handsome. He has a nice family. He’s also Marxist and a pantheist. But he’s not the Messiah. He’s not God. He’s not God’s hand-picked “blessed and highly favored, full of grace and truth.” He is “Our Product”, the product of the New American global secular humanist, value-neutral, “diversity” Age. He’s the perfect product of modern America. Are we so far along in our deconstruction of Christendom that we can begin to attribute divinity to such a man? To any man?
I don’t agree with Barack Obama’s politics. I don’t believe in liberalism, and he is more than a liberal, he’s a bona fide leftist. His mentor was a Marxist, his pastor, a black liberation theologian, and he counts an unrepentant terrorist among his friends. I would oppose him with all my being for that alone, but should he become president, time will tell what kind of president he will be. I personally believe he will outlaw much of my Christian morality (should he find himself with a liberal majority to back him up). There will be those who think he walks on water just because he’s liberal. Will forgive any failing just because he’s one of their own. We saw it with Clinton. We’ve seen it with other Democrats. We’ll see it even more with Obama. I certainly reject the notion that his election is “divinely ordered?” It is simply the inevitable outcome of 50 years of left-wing propaganda and educational indoctrination.
Alisa Craddock is a columnist and activist in the culture war, a convert to Catholicism, and describes herself as a Christian Libertarian. She may be contacted at alisa.craddock at hushmail.com.