I’m hardly the only person to notice that, for those coming of age for marriage, America has become a social toxic wasteland. It’s bad enough that America is Western, with all the serious problems that can bring. Still, within that flawed system until recently, it was possible for good things to happen with romance. Those possibilities have now been reduced to a mere fragment, memories of quaint customs no longer tolerated.
All the most useful cues are gone, so that the process of getting to know someone well enough to fall in love has lost all the warmth. Romance is just about dead. It’s not that people no longer pair for sex, but that the vast majority never pair up for actual love and marriage.
The Men’s Red Pill movement is dying for a reason. It’s not that the study of what women are like has failed; fundamental truths about feminine nature that women once kept hidden in their own society have not changed. Women of the younger generations have begun to admit this stuff openly. But they do so only to confirm it as their right, with all the enforcement that comes with such a status. Soft manipulation becomes law. The common social expectations of these younger generations have dramatically shifted. The number of women still dreaming of romance has dramatically dropped to a tiny minority of the population. Such dreams are openly suppressed.
It would be easy to pass off this ugly shift as the influence of networking technology and how people interact with the virtual world. This is the age of technocracy. That much is patently true, but the question is: Do you understand it? Do you understand how things have shifted? The sheer power of this pervasive change in human orientation is bigger than most people in the older generations can comprehend. The momentum of this thing makes it utterly impossible to even think of rolling it back, or any part of it.
Complaining that people in social settings always have their faces in their cellphones is wasted breath. Scolding is pointless because that is their reality. They are an alien population living among us, and soon enough we will be gone, and they will remember us only in jokes about how poorly we understood their reality. The path on which they have set their feet has only just begun.
Nor will it serve much use to discuss in worried tones who is steering this shift, and how they are doing it. There’s nothing wrong with examining it to understand, but it’s downright foolish to think there is anything we can do to turn it back. This is a new civilization aborning, and we who don’t belong to the new one will take the old one to our graves. What you can do is learn about the differences so that you can witness to it as it is.
The only antidote to this depressing sight is to maintain the only alternative that God has blessed from day one outside of the Garden of Eden: The Kingdom of Heaven. Only briefly was it ever manifested as a real kingdom on earth. That has now passed; it served its purpose and is long gone these past two millennia. What’s left is the transcendent, more real Kingdom to which it pointed. Because it is transcendent, it exists as an overlay atop whatever civilizations and kingdoms come and go as the world races toward the Second Coming.
It has to be a kingdom of hearts, something that could not be said of any human institution. The only antidote is to operate on a different level of consciousness. We can’t become bogged down in questions of how to fix what’s wrong with the world. The world is inherently wrong no matter what it does, simply because it is the world. It is not meant to be improved much, but to be abandoned as a lie.
What really breaks my heart is not the death of the worldly culture in which I grew up, but that there appears to be a dearth of interest in a heavenly kingdom identity. Apparently what little was there has been allowed to atrophy. The transcendent realm has been ignored, hidden by intent. In the minds of most of the people who should be building up that moral realm, there is a deep confusion over what it was meant to be when Christ left this earth.
I haven’t seen much of the Kingdom of Hearts. Sure, I’ve invested a little time and effort trying to understand how it was lost, but I’m more focused on how to build it back. As I survey the activity around me, the big shifts in culture and government, my only interest is how I can turn human attention to this higher realm.
You want to create a lasting revolution in this world? You darned sure better understand why it’s normal for folks in any social setting to seemingly ignore each other most of the time while gazing at their cellphones. They don’t see it as being rude to each other. Whether it’s harmful in any way has no bearing on the question: How do these folks operate? What is normal for them? Find out what provokes them to action, because they will surely take action on things that matter to them. Figure out what’s possible within the realm in which they exist.
I’m not that interested in a revolution or any kind of significant social influence. What I’m called to do is look for a way to reach them and pull them up to a higher level. Not so much that I do that outreach personally; the ground isn’t even ready for plowing. There’s a whole forest of lies to cut down before we can talk about plowing, and then planting and watering. God knows, the harvest is way off down the road. We are at the stage of plucking the low-hanging wild fruit. We are just now starting to touch those who are so powerfully driven by the Spirit that they come looking for our message.
I’m not sure I can give you a parable that will help you understand how to avoid getting mired in what’s going on in the world, and still have a good clear idea what it is. I think I know how John felt writing his Apocalypse, as he saw the crushing weight of cultural change sweeping his world. The change was going to make it much harder for believers to restore the ancient ways of divine truth, ways that were already very hard to point out because they were so very different from the world John was born into. The generation that followed his quickly lost the ability to read what he wrote without twisting it into something else entirely.
We don’t have even the few advantages the Apostles had. On a human level, this is a battle lost long ago. And yet, here we are with God revealing Himself once again through the heart-led way of ancient Hebrew epistemology. I’m not alone; I’ve seen glimpses of this message elsewhere, though I confess it is too often married to a bunch of trappings I can’t comfortably embrace. That’s okay; there are too many different false trends to counter, and no one community can address them all. The point is that we aren’t the only faith community restoring the ancient way of truth.
Keep your eyes open for trends that help you to understand what’s going on around you. Yet, don’t get bogged down in building something that belongs to this world. For example, I can’t use a whole lot of the Men’s Red Pill stuff any more, because it’s tied to a passing generation. There’s a certain amount of awareness there that will stand, simply because it reflects ancient truth in the first place. Still, most of it is a lore with a distinct shelf life. Only a little portion of it will endure, and that’s the part we need to begin matching up with the new social realities.
I feel sorry for the younger generations of men and women. They will have make their own way, and it looks like the system is flatly hostile to their needs. The only thing that can make life bearable is divine revelation, and that calls for disconnecting from this world in some measure. I can’t help them within their own realm of existence; they have to awaken a higher faculty. The genuine biblical path of a Christian family is truly alien to this world.
But I’m doing what I can to rebuild that ancient model, and fitting it with an interpretive imagery that translates divine revelation into the language of this age. Technically, I’m saying goodbye to the Red Pill stuff, in that it no longer serves any useful purpose in my calling. Sure, it still addresses needs for the older generations; it will remain a part of my counseling repertoire. But my calling points to a focus on establishing things that will need to be standing when even newer generations come of age. I’m building a model of what “church” means and does for those not yet born.