Dissident Mama, episode 35 – TJ Martinell

TJ Martinell is an author, writer, podcaster, and reporter frequently seen roaming the Cascade Mountains in the Pacific Northwest. He has written seven fiction books and extensive articles about gun rights for the Tenth Amendment Center. A variety of essays and short stories of Martinell’s have been featured at Terror House Magazine and Punch Riot Magazine. You can find out more about him and his diverse work, including the Mountain Pass Podcast, by visiting TJMartinell.com.

Martinell expounds upon secular-puritanism, the frontier spirit, heritage and ancestry, the divergent meanings of nationalism, understated prose, the fiction-writing process, enjoying one’s own books, bringing faith into our political world, the ethical issues innate in living in a dead culture, the importance of rejecting lies, and his newest post-dystopian novella, “The Pilgrim’s Digress.”

Also, if you haven’t checked it out already, be sure to give a listen to Martinell’s interview with yours truly. In it, we talk about “our current political climate, and what it’s like to raise a traditional family amid our modern culture and society.”

Martinell expounds upon secular-puritanism, the frontier spirit, heritage and ancestry, the divergent meanings of nationalism, understated prose, the fiction-writing process, enjoying one’s own books, bringing faith into our political world, the ethical issues innate in living in a dead culture, the importance of rejecting lies, and his newest post-dystopian novella, “The Pilgrim’s Digress.”

Also, if you haven’t checked it out already, be sure to give a listen to Martinell’s interview with yours truly. In it, we talk about “our current political climate, and what it’s like to raise a traditional family amid our modern culture and society.”

Download this podcast, watch our discussion on YouTube, or listen to the episode here 👇.

A few pertinent links pertaining to our chat:

• Martinell’s other books: “The Night No One Slept,” “Men Who Walk Alone,” “The Song of Wulfgar: A Legend of the Enchantments” (including audiobook), and The Stringers Trilogy > “The Redeemers,” “The Informers,” and “The Stringers
• The classic movies “The Alamo” and “Cromwell,” and Washington State’s The Enchantments
• And my 5-part “Puritans” series > “Coming to America,” “New England Pharisees,” “A progressive unfolding,” “Yankee sanctification,” and “Redeeming the time.”

Lastly, I was remiss in mentioning to Martinell that half of my husband’s paternal ancestry also came to the American Colonies on the Mayflower voyages, settling in Sandwich, Massachusetts, before eventually making their way to the Carolinas via Vermont! Yep, and don’t you know that when we’re having a disagreement, I will not hesitate playing that Yankee card, y’all. 😉 Such are the quirks and intricacies of us heritage Americans.

Source: Dissident Mama – Dissident Mama, episode 35 – TJ Martinell

The Ludwell Orthodox Fellowship: Our mission

By now, you may have heard that a few of my fellow Orthodox and I are starting a fellowship that we hope will foster Orthodoxy in the American South and evangelize to the natives, while also respecting the indigenous and unique culture of Dixie. Go big, or go home, as they say.

The mission statement for the Philip Ludwell III Orthodox Fellowship’s can be read at our GoFundMe page, where our rationale is spelled out quite succinctly and beautifully by Dr. Clark Carlton, who I recently interviewed. His piece was chosen among three possible statements of principle. This included a thorough, theological, and thought-provoking article by Jeff Condra, a friend of Carlton’s and the fellowship’s brainchild, and an exposition by yours truly.

Once we launch the the our website, SouthernOrthodox.org, I’m certain we’ll publish Condra’s draft as one of the first feature essays. My latest guest post by Mrs. Olga, “The redneck hillbilly parish still standing,” is also a good example of some of the content you may eventually find at our blog.

But today, on this Holy Monday I thought I’d share with you my attempt at capturing the essence of what I think are our goals are in establishing this worthy and necessary venture. I pray you find my editorial edifying.

“Each of us has ancestors, both physical and spiritual,
who gave us [our] language, culture and, most importantly, [our] faith …
To lose touch with that past, with those ancestors,
means to become spiritually dry.”

— His Holiness Kirill, Patriarch of Moscow and All-Russia

Some say that Orthodoxy suffers from a lack of converts here in America. While the faith of the One, True Church is shrinking in some ethnic enclaves of the Northeast and stagnating in other regions of the country, Orthodoxy is alive and growing here in the South. That’s because the people of the Dixie are steeped in faith. It’s in our blood.

When it comes to religion, the postbellum American South has been called many things. “Christ haunted” by Flannery O’Connor and “peculiarly Christian” by W.J. Cash. Richard M. Weaver said it was a land of “older religiousness” marked with a “noncreedal faith,” and H.L. Mencken disparagingly pegged it “the Bible Belt.”

None of these descriptives seem too promising at first glimpse, but upon closer inspection they elucidate the fact that Southerners speak a language touched by the Gospels. We walk in a land paved by God-fearing men and live by folkways crafted by Scripture. These traits may sometimes seem distant, but they remain enigmatically familiar. We are a remnant who are used to Christ, yet too many are still yearning to be reconciled with Him. Why?

Well, in a word: history. The South was not only subjected to military invasion, conquest, and occupation, perpetual economic attacks, political disenfranchisement, and an assault on the localist agrarian way of life, but there was (and is) a religious war being waged on the Southern spirit. This reconstruction is meant to replace God and nature with secularism, scientism, and materialism, and human-scale living with identityless-ness. Today, we would call this cultural Marxism, or more precisely, Southern cultural genocide.

However, because Christianity is our inheritance, the South has endured. The quiet piety innate in the Southern character has given this land and her people a durability in spite of the mercantile and humanist onslaught. Our roots are sturdy, but our branches are weak.

We may have gotten Jesus right, but unfortunately, we got Church wrong. Our namesake, Philip Ludwell III realized that too, and this in Colonial times, well before the Unitarian, Transcendental, and Rationalist philosophies forced their way down South. A native Virginian who was kin to some of the Southland’s greatest men, like George Washington and Robert E. Lee, Ludwell was received into Eastern Orthodox Christianity in 1738, making him the first known Orthodox convert in the Americas.

Ludwell practiced his faith in secrecy and solitude while serving in the House of Burgesses, serving in the Royal Governors Council, and living amongst his mostly Anglican or Deist contemporaries. Still, he remained faithful to the Church, leading his daughters to Orthodox conversion on Holy Wednesday 1762. The colonel (a militia title in Colonial Virginia) even translated into English a catechism, and some Liturgical and confessional services and prayers.

Like Ludwell, our Southron brothers and sisters have a nonconformist strength, which will benefit us in defending the ancient faith in our post-Christian world. We were never the majority historically and are most certainly outcasts now. Foreigners in our own land, thus, we’ve built up an armor that bodes well for evangelizing in our increasingly pluralistic and godless society.

Just as the War gave the South a national consciousness, the Southern experience has equipped her people with spiritual ammunition. It’s much harder to break a people who are used to suffering but only if they’re encouraged to be stout, not self-loathing; vigilant, not prideful; thankful, not shameful; bold, not complacent.

Just as a battle-worn identity is our heritage, so too are virtue, honor, and duty. We respect tradition, history, and ancestry, and believe in godly authority, hierarchy, and decentralization. We natives seek venerable “old-time” truths, not popular feel-good fictions. Our customs fully balance self-reliance and surrender, self-interest and selflessness, the individual and the collective. So many Orthodox elements already resonate deep within Dixie’s culture.

This is why the Southern identity can be used as a tool to sow the seeds of Orthodox Christian identity, while Orthodoxy can help to protect our hospitable and historic homeland. These are not mutually exclusive identities at all, for they can work in concert – a symbiosis uniting the divine and universal with the Southron spirit. As St. Tikhon of Moscow said, the Orthodox Faith is “the best and most reliable way to preserve and support your national character.”

So, let’s baptize what’s here. Let’s bring Orthodoxy to the “Southern nation” and consequently endow that tradition as a healthy and organic expression, not a theoretical idea. Just like when Jesus talked to the woman at the well of Jacob (Photine of Samaria) and stressed His belonging to the Jewish nation as to better communicate His words, we Orthodox Southerners will speak the language of our fellow Dixians. The often shallow cup of immigrant missionaries simply cannot help to quench a people’s thirst for truth as lovingly as can kinfolk.

I heard it said by a priest once that Orthodoxy propagates in the South like a native plant. So, let’s regenerate our people back to Christ. Illumine them to the authentic Church. Foster true reconciliation. And protect our beloved Southland that has for so long nurtured these roots. It’s time to come home, y’all.

Deo vindice.

Be sure to check out The Philip Ludwell III Orthodox Fellowship mission statement and crowd-funding page. Donations of any amount would be greatly appreciated. And please do take a listen to or watch my conversation with Dr. Carlton, in which he explains the organization’s background and fleshes out some of our ideas.

Source: Dissident Mama – The Ludwell Orthodox Fellowship: Our mission

Episode 230 – Eyes Wide Shut (1:30:02)

We dive into a review of Stanley Kubrick’s final film, “Eyes Wide Shut” with our friend Mike C.

Eyes Wide Shut is a 1999 erotic mystery psychological drama film directed, produced and co-written by Stanley Kubrick. Based on the 1926 novella Traumnovelle (Dream Story) by Arthur Schnitzler, the movie transfers the story from early 20th-century Vienna to 1990s New York City.

Kubrick was a master film-maker who made every scene full of meaning and symbolism, every shot a portrait or a painting and often leaves the viewer to interpret the “art” in a very subjective way.

This was his last film and he died a few days after sharing the cut with the studio.

We will have much to discuss on this one.

We’re also proud to announce that our YouTube video for this episode now features actual video footage of the show, check it out here, and be sure to hit that subscribe button!

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Continue reading “Episode 230 – Eyes Wide Shut (1:30:02)”

The redneck hillbilly parish still standing

By Mrs. Olga

As Greece and other traditionally Orthodox countries impose travel bans, restrictions and closures ahead of Pascha for a second year in a row, many eyes are looking toward the American South.

While most churches around the world closed their doors on Holy Pascha of 2020 some brave priests in Dixieland, known for its rugged independence and “redneck” style resistance to tyranny, kept their doors open amongst the chaos.

“We’ll go into the catacombs if we have to,” one Matushka texted a worried member in April 2020.

“Please be mindful to arrive early for Pascha,” one Father counseled. “We don’t want dozens of people showing up at midnight to our new location.”

Parish members whispered among themselves about leaving their cell phones at home to prevent tracking.

Many still didn’t know whether or not gathering was technically illegal. In early 2020, shut downs were still new. Priests checked in with health departments and searched government websites. Some parishes abandoned the state they were in and moved to another state with fewer restrictions but they stayed open.

I still remember walking into the church for the Paschal liturgy of 2020. A quiet reverence surrounded the event. We were well aware that the police could burst in. We knew there was a risk. Among the candle light we saw new faces we had never seen before. Folks had traveled for hundreds of miles to attend the one parish that was open.

Most of us were bitterly and painfully aware that our brothers and sisters around the world were sitting at home, agonized over their missed Pascha. Moms were baking treats and turning on livestreams in an attempt to make Pascha special but the hallowness cut like a knife.

“Don’t worry too much about why you’re here and why they aren’t,” Father gently reminded us. “Let’s just be grateful.” And we were.

Last year’s Pascha hit at the very beginning of the Big C. It was a very confusing time. In recent memory the church hadn’t faced such a thing as a potential pandemic and the dread virus of 2020 was not well understood yet. Looking at the numbers coming out of China it seemed that the Wu-flu could potentially have upwards of a 10% death rate.

However, as Pascha of 2021 rolls around and we have a clearer picture of the real threat the virus poses, many churches around the world are still facing some measure of closer and restriction. All that is, except one place, the American South.

While some big-city churches in the South have chosen to maintain some measure of closure most, Southern churches reflect the operation of most Southern states and are fully, or nearly fully, open. No mask mandates. Icons kissed.

As one church in Texas posts on their website, “If you want to wear a mask, wear one. If you don’t. Then don’t. If you want to kiss icons. Kiss them. If you don’t, then don’t.”

Underneath such statements on many parish websites are appeals to help the parish find or fund a new building as they’ve seen their numbers the past year sky rocket and the weekly attendance has them bursting at the seams of their 2019 parish.

Why? Why are the Southern churches staying open and growing?

We’re rednecks.

Oh, you may have thought “redneck” referred to what you get when you sit out on the lake too long sippin’ a Coors Light. Nope. It has a deeper history than a reoccurring sunburn.

As Todd J. Wilkinson, FSA Scot., explains “… [the] term Redneck [is] Scottish and [refers] to supporters of the National Covenant and The Solemn League and Covenant, or ‘Covenanters,’ largely Lowland Presbyterians, many of whom would flee Scotland for Ulster (Northern Ireland) during persecutions by the British Crown.”

“The Covenanters of 1638 and 1641 signed the documents that stated that Scotland desired the Presbyterian form of church government and would not accept the Church of England as its official state church. Many Covenanters signed in their own blood and wore red pieces of cloth around their necks as distinctive insignia; hence the term ‘Red neck,’ (rednecks) which became slang for a Scottish dissenter.”

Is it me or does signing one’s name in blood seem to be in harmony with the visceral Orthodox tradition which brings us Catacombs piled with the bones of the faithful, relics of Saints in our altars and the weekly consuming of the flesh and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ?

Wilkinson explains further, “Since many Ulster-Scottish settlers in America (especially the South) were Presbyterian, the term was applied to them, and then, later, their Southern descendants. One of the earliest examples of its use comes from 1830 … ”

Rednecks then are actually dissenters who reject the imposition of the State and rebel against tyranny (whether actual or perceived). Is it any surprise that their Southern culture is one of strong independence, self reliance and faith?

No surprise at all.

Likewise is the case with another Southern moniker, “hillbilly.” When the throne was under dispute supporters of King William were known as “Billy Boys” which became the American term hillbillies. Again, we see a term with a distinct history of defiance in the face of personal belief.

That same defiance that was against the Roman Catholic crown, the defiance against the Union in the War Between the States, and the defiance in closing our churches at Pascha is a Southern tradition and is why the redneck hillbilly church is often the one still standing on Pascha.

May the Southern spirit spread and may all the churches around the world fully reopen.

Be sure to follow Mrs. Olga at her blog, Appalachian Orthodox.

Note: My family and I visited Mrs. Olga's out-of-state parish on May 24, 2020. This was more than two months after my (now former) parish had shut its doors but was still putting on "Facebook Liturgy" with a sparse group of clergy, altar servers, and a handful of singers. Thus, Olga's open-door church became the hospital where we sinful strangers could receive the Eucharist for the healing of soul and body, making it our first communion since the double-whammy of both governmental and church lockdowns began in mid-to-late March of last year.
There in this House of God was one chalice, one spoon, one Body of believers. We kissed icons and venerated them as windows to Heaven. We joyful yet pensive parishioners attended the service and the choir sang hymns unmasked, while the priest steadfastly tended to his flock and to us "refugees," and did so at great risk to himself. Fellowship and food followed, where the faithful gathered and broke bread, talked, laughed, and hugged, and did all those simple yet profound things that make this special meal "the Liturgy after the Liturgy."
I will be eternally grateful for this "redneck hillbilly parish" and how it served as such a bright light during that dark and desperate time – a true oasis in the sea of conformity and condescension in which many conservative Christians like me felt like we were drowning. I thank the Good Lord that there were and are Orthodox who have that rebel spirit when it comes not to resistance against God, His Law, or Church dogma, but rather in defiance to the spirit of the age.
"And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful." – Colossians 3:15

Source: Dissident Mama – The redneck hillbilly parish still standing

Episode 229 – A Perfect World (1:18:15)

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In a perfect world, we would have recorded this a few days ago. Pipes wouldn’t burst. Food poisoning wouldn’t be a thing. But we don’t live in a perfect world…and in fact, our world is often less perfect than it could be by those striving to make it more perfect.

Yes, those with the pretense of knowledge are the very same who ignore spontaneous order and meddle with the natural and organic forces at play – causing distortions unforeseen when they would have been better off to leave it to voluntary interactions among peaceful people rather than coercively force their ill-conceived central planning.

Other than Vienna Sausages being gross, what other lessons can we draw from this movie – we’ll find out.

We’re also proud to announce that our YouTube video for this episode now features actual video footage of the show, check it out here and be sure to hit that subscribe button!

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Continue reading “Episode 229 – A Perfect World (1:18:15)”

Dissident Mama, episode 34 – Dr. Clark Carlton

Today my guest is Dr. Clark Carlton: author, speaker, and professor. He’s also the co-founder of The Philip Ludwell III Orthodox Fellowship, which is currently in its fundraising stages but has big hopes of “Nurturing the roots of Orthodoxy within the Southern tradition.”

We discuss the impetus for the fellowship, its goals to both foster the Southland’s indigenous culture and facilitate evangelism among her people, Southerners’ classical and biblical self-consciousness, Ludwell’s bio, stealth Baptist churches, everyone from Tris Englehardt and Basil Gildersleeve to Father John Meyendorff, English translations of the Divine Liturgy, permanence, going native, and much more.

Carlton’s articles have been published in various publications, such as the Journal of Christian Bioethics, St. Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly, and the Journal of Early Christian Studies, and his “The Faith” book series has been highly influential within Orthodox Christianity. His long-running but now retired Ancient Faith Radio podcast, “Faith and Philosophy,” provided important commentary on the intersection of Orthodoxy and faith, philosophy, and culture.

Dr. Carlton has a B.A. in philosophy from Carson-Newman College, a Master of Divinity degree from St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, and an M.A. in Early Christian Studies from the Catholic University of America. He’s currently assistant professor of philosophy at Tennessee Tech University, where he teaches the history of philosophy as well as the philosophy of religion and logic.

Download this podcast, watch our discussion on YouTube, or listen to the episode here 👇.

Two important websites with a distinction:

The Philip Ludwell III Orthodox Fellowship > our faith-based mission statement and crowd-funding page
Ludwell.org > the history organization of the Associates of Colonel Philip Ludwell III

Carlton’s books:

The Faith: Understanding Orthodox Christianity
The Way: What Every Protestant Should Know About the Orthodox Church
The Truth: What Every Roman Catholic Should Know About the Orthodox Church
The Life: The Orthodox Doctrine of Salvation
The Homeland of Your Heart’s Desire: The Orthodox Teaching On How To Be Saved

Source: Dissident Mama – Dissident Mama, episode 34 – Dr. Clark Carlton

On the backs of poor whites? How J.D. Vance elites become elites

By Ilana Mercer

The country is fast descending into a Dantean hell.

The Circles of Hell into which we’ve been signed, sealed and delivered are mass migration, diversity, multiculturalism, and zealous, institutionalized anti-whiteness, with its attendant de-civilization and inversion of long-held societal morals and mores.

The guiding ghost of Virgil is nowhere to be found. To ostensibly shepherd us out of hell, however, assorted serpents have slithered forth.

Beware! All the more so when they speak to you from bastions of the establishment — Newsweek is one — as J. D. Vance does in, “True ‘Compassion’ Requires Secure Borders and Stopping Illegal Immigration.

His is the typically conciliatory, “conservative” argument we’ve come to expect from the gilded elite, regarding America’s promiscuous immigration policy, under Republicans and Democrats alike.

Vance is the best-selling author of Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis, which is a culturally compliant — namely unflattering — account of poor, white America.

Provided your thesis allows for a cozy convergence over agreeable storylines — you are well-positioned to peddle a national bestseller to the approving left, libertarian, neoconservative and pseudo-conservative smart-set.

Yes, Vance is a sellout. Not that they were asked for their take, but the archetypical folks depicted in Hillbilly Elegy contend, justifiably, that “Vance [is] not an authentic hillbilly or an example of the working class.”

Cassie Chambers Armstrong’s Aunt Ruth, for example.

Aunt Ruth didn’t think much of Vance’s endeavor. Her niece is an Appalachian and author of a redeeming tale, Hill Women: Finding Family and a Way Forward in the Appalachian Mountains.

Hillbilly Elegy’s portrayal of Appalachia,” explains Chambers, “is designed to elevate Vance above the community from which he came … it seeks to tell his story in a way that aligns with a simplistic rags-to-riches narrative. Think critically about how that narrative influences the way we are taught to think about poverty, progress, and identity.”

Chambers is perceptively correct. It’s cringe worthy — Uriah Heep slimy — but Vance all but advertises that the Indian-American Brahmin he wed has helped “rid him of his hillbilly ways.” To that end, he tells of a mild exchange with his wife: “Don’t make excuses for weakness. I didn’t get here by making excuses for failure,” he “hollers” at her.

These unremarkable, muted words Vance had with wife Usha Chilukuri he frames, self-servingly, as “the baggage of his tumultuous upbringing.” Wow!

Self-deprecation over nothing much at all amounts to very clever self-aggrandizement. Vance’s casuistry resembles a kind of Argument From Fake Modesty.

Indeed, in smug self-aggrandizement, Vance slimes his hillbilly relatives, even naming names. Credits and kudos go to the Chilukuris, wife Usha’s relatives, for “[teaching] him what a functional family looked like.”

From family unit to family unification policy: When discussing immigration, J. D. Vance is just as nimble. He utters the code words at the door of the Establishment, left and right, and in he goes. Sesame has opened.

What are some of the “Open Sesame” magical phrases that get one into polite company, conservative and progressive?

First comes the “moral” preening component: “All’s I’m saying, y’all, comes out of the goodness of my hillbilly heart.” Vance opposes the rot of America’s immigration reality simply out of the kindness of his heart: He is at pains to emphasize how he hates that “human traffickers take advantage of the desperate poor of Central America.”

After all, Vance is open, law-abiding, and properly diverse. (Vance’s marriage alone proves his PC credential; although adopting the Right Kind of Baby before running for office is highly recommended.)

Yet another part of the Vance celebrity seeking vaudeville is the incessant mention of his “working-class background.”

This reflex finds Vance at once eagerly pressing flesh “at roundtable[s]” with CEOs and “communications conglomerates,” during “masters of the universe” events, all the while moaning a lot about his disdain for them.

He mingles with millionaires under “duress” because he’s so very authentic.

A member of the gilded, conservative elite by any other name, our hoedown Hillbilly also loves to name-drop. Non-stop: While Vance forgot to brag directly in the Newsweek piece about having married an Indian-American lady, who “rid him of his hillbilly ways“; he brings her up surreptitiously when he touts his connections among conservative cognoscenti:

“… my friend (and my wife’s former boss) Brett Kavanaugh [of the] Supreme Court..”

For Vance’s second “Open-Sesame” password into polite company, allow me to excerpt from this writer’s “The Immigration Scene.” Written in 2006, it proves that not much has changed. Why vote? GOP can RIP:

Everyone (and his dog) currently concurs that we have no problem with legal immigrationonly with the illegal variety. It’s now mandatory to pair an objection to the invasion of the American Southwest with an embrace of all forms of legal immigration.

So you’re clear: Vance opposes illegal immigration alone, even though its effects on the country are as pernicious as the legal and annual importation of over 1 million immigrants from India, China and the Third World.

All this misplaced compassion — day in and day out, on Fox News, too — is, frankly, nauseating. The job of American policy makers and the auxiliary punditry is not to flaunt their virtue to The World currently on its way to America, but to stick strictly to their mandate — and send them the hell home.

Want to know more about Ilana Mercer? Be sure to check out my 2-part interview with the author and longtime blogger.

Source: Dissident Mama – On the backs of poor whites? How J.D. Vance elites become elites

Globohomers gone wild, part 2

At top is a late-January photo op of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, who proclaimed that it is “‘unacceptable’ for people — especially Christian clergy members — to ‘deny the reality’ of the pandemic” and that “the rejection of the mask and all precautionary measures does not arise simply from ignorance but from the necrosis of love within them.”

The controversial hierarch, a Western-backed ally of the global and technocratic elite and most certainly not the “spiritual leader of more than 300 million Orthodox Christians worldwide,” added that getting the covid jab is a “responsibility to fellow human beings.”

Vaccine apologetics

So, it shouldn’t be a surprise when the Bartholomew-influenced Orthodox Theological Society (OTS) asserts that “COVID vaccines present best ethical option despite use of fetal cells.” Not only does the society base its recent statement on a summit held by the unscrupulous Bartholomew, but it also cites the Vatican and the US Conference of Catholic Bishops as sources for its pro-vaccine stance.

Honestly, as an Orthodox, why should I care two hoots about the moral advice of the Catholic Church, which has long stated that vaccines made using DNA from aborted human fetuses are “worthy of continued use, despite their origins”? The OTS goes on to admit that the “vaccine” won’t stop sickness or its spread, yet insists the benefits still outweigh the risks. What are those benefits? They do not say.

The same day as the OTS news was making the rounds, another essay describing Mount Athos monks as “particularly fearful” and allegedly getting the covid jab was being shared and debated in Orthodox circles. So, I’m publishing for you a snapshot of one particular thread that was generated after an otherwise conservative priest shared the article.

Don’t excommunicate the messenger

This is not to be “mean,” as I’m sure will be the accusation from some. This is a distraction technique, or “progressive rhetorical gamesmanship” as Rod Dreher calls it, used to deflect from the larger point at hand. Unfortunately, the psyop strategy of attacking the messenger as to avoid the message and shut down critical thinking has become commonplace even among traditionalists who feign outrage over diminished civility.

Dreher got trashed recently for taking to task a leftist seminarian just because the middling “conservative” divulged her Twitter handle, whereas I’m sharing the real names. My father confessor advised that I keep the names in the screenshots only if they add value to the story, which they do, in my opinion.

I think this public conversation illustrates quite nicely the “globohomers gone wild” phenomenon (as described in part 1) and the frustrating predicament we dislocated Orthodox find ourselves in when trying to engage in previously civil spaces and in an increasingly divided Church. The prevailing tenor of “dialog” these days is one-sided, condescending, and sometimes outright hostile, and should be pointed out if we’re ever to remedy this quagmire. What could be more important than open and honest discussion on living vs. existing, life vs. death, and to be of this world vs. in it?

If Christians cannot have constructive discourse over some of the biggest ethical and ecclesiastical issues of our day, all of which can and will have long-lasting ramifications for the Church, for people’s salvation, and for society at large, we are missing the mark more than any of us had ever imagined. So here goes … I pray this essay will enliven deliberation and foster healthy debate.

I was actually taken aback by Fr. Thomas and others participating in the slights against Father Peter Heers, an American-born priest living in Greece and founder of Uncut Mountain Press and Orthodox Ethos. Maybe they’re incensed that Fr. Peter said the original post was “fake news” and that there are “Greek articles issued already exposing the propaganda piece.”

He added, “The monks [getting the “vaccine”] are few and they are from the monasteries that support the patriarch [Bartholomew].” Since Orthodox Christianity teaches that “the devil’s strongest weapon (is) death itself,” … “fear of death leads one to sin and thus to bondage” … and that “Jesus sets us free from this bondage of sin and death,” I’m thinking that Fr. Peter’s assessment is spot on.

Strange too that Fr. Thomas laughs at Manolo’s first comment, and gives a thumbs-up to his and Photius’ other snarky remarks, yet Fr. Tom thinks that my (correct) assessment that he’s dog-piling is “unnecessary.”

Everything I say above is true. Yet, Manolo thinks vaccines – and experimental, rushed-to-market, new-technology, litigation-resistant, social-credit-system-creating ones at that! – are a laughing matter. He continues with his infantile quips, as opposed to thoughtfully debating a fellow Orthodox Christian. Science is never settled.

Even ROCOR’s Archbishop Peter got the vaccine and said that “the question of vaccination is not an ecclesiastical one.” While I’m not sure I agree with that, I do agree it is indeed a question and one that should be vociferously debated, politically, ethically, and spiritually.

Perhaps Fr. Tom considers my reality-based insights as an “extreme POV” (point of view). This is one of the main beefs of dissenters toward the globohomo narrative: that we have never been heard, not even pretended to be heard or taken seriously. Instead, what we have experienced is being castigated as “naysayers” with “unreasonable faith,” and “radicals” who “act Protestant” and peddle in “self-righteous garbage.”

This is why “pro-reasonable” is such a peculiar phrase, not to mention “limited … (and) minor inconvenient measures for a season.” Those days were done after “15 days to flatten the curve.” We are dealing with major, not minor, changes both in church and in society at large. So, wouldn’t it be reasonable to reassess?

Seriously, there could be nothing more pro-division and anti-humility than acting like Orthodox are top-down papists and that laity are an annoying after thought who should be scorned when they defend the faith or even dare to ask legitimate questions. It’s disappointing that the loudest Christian opposition to the fear porn and its ungodly aims has overwhelmingly come from Protestant and Catholic clergy.

Thus, many of those frustrated Orthodox have left their former parishes and have either found new parishes that do not cave to the covid-crazy, or they aren’t attending church at all. As Orthodox Reflections rightly states, “So to all the clergy, do not blame mass apostasy for your diminished flock. The vast majority of people skipping church services continue to believe in God. It’s you they don’t believe in, and that is your fault.”


New to the thread is Deacon James. His barbs about “patently awful sources” and “contextualized information” are odd, since “half-truths, untruths, ‘expert’ opinion, and anecdotal data” are the very foundations upon which the cult of covid were built.

After all, it is “pharma-funded corporate media and medical bureaucrats who have a conflict of interest” and will vilify and call a “quack” and censor physicians like Dr. Peter McCullough, a consultant cardiologist and Vice Chief of Medicine at Baylor University Medical Center, because his contention is that effective home remedies make the “vaccine” unnecessary.

As Dilbert creator Scott Adams notes in his book “Loserthink,” “One thing I can say with complete certainty is that it is a bad idea to trust the majority of experts in any domain in which both complexity and large amounts of money are involved.” Indeed.

There are plenty of previously well-respected medical experts, researchers, cultural critics, and brave people of faith who adamantly oppose the pro-lockdown, pro-mask, pro-vaccine tyranny. Counter-experts are out there, yet the globohomers refuse to listen to them, much less even admit they exist. Like biochemist Kary Mullis said in a 2007 interview (taken from the full-length documentary AIDS Inc.), “You can’t expect the sheep to really respect the best and the brightest, they don’t know the difference.”

“The vast majority do not possess the ability to judge who is and who isn’t a good scientist” and the “funding is being done by people who don’t understand it,” added Mullis, who won the 1993 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for co-inventing the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technique and died in August 2019. Interestingly enough, he was no fan of faustian bureaucratic Fauci, even back in the day.

Pro-life … until it counts

Since Deacon James had to “hold his tongue,” I poked around and found that he has a website. In his most recent essay, James asserts that “you cannot just make broad, sweeping, black and white assertions” when it comes to vaccines and the use of fetal cell lines in vaccines and other antibody therapies.

This, of course, it a hot topic in Christian circles, especially since so many Orthodox claim that their jab was “ethical.” However, there are some things that are uniform, black-and-white, absolutely singular and universally consistent.

According to Luke 1:39-49, there is no gray when it comes to innocent life. At the Annunciation of Our Most Holy Lady Theotokos, Jesus is already fully Man and the incarnate Son of God, even though He’s not fully formed within her womb. Hence, a fetus is a person.

Yet, those who condone the degradation of the pre-born humans that it took (and will take) for the harvesting of fetal stem cells would never condone that Jews who died in Auschwitz be used for such scientific “progress,” even if the prisoners’ tissue was obtained only for the testing stage of a supposed world-saving, pandemic-ending vaccine, and if it only utilized a couple of murdered Jews from 75 years ago. Would it still be about the greater good then?

I know that even mentioning the holocaust in an effort to undo globohomo can easily get someone tagged an anti-Semite these days. But the analogy, which Father John Whiteford shared with me, is an apt one because it points out the sanctimony of the pro-vaccine crowd. And if they don’t think a baby in the womb has as much worth as does a prisoner in a Nazi concentration camp, well, I think they need to seriously reexamine their pro-life stance. Or they can open their hearts and minds to what the other side is saying.

According to a “social concept” statement put out by the Russian Church in 2000, the use of human tissue within the confines of true science can be ethical but only if the donation is voluntary and if the act doesn’t result in the death of the donor. Neither criteria is satisfied in the case of the covid jabs.

And here’s a personal anecdote … even before I was Orthodox, I came to realize that having an IUD didn’t prevent fertilization of an egg, but instead changes the lining of the uterus and prevents the implantation of the zygote. So, I got my IUD removed. Sure, I paid for that thing and still had 3 years to go on it, but I decided it wasn’t in line with my pro-life view and that there really was no wiggle room on the matter. The stuff really ain’t rocket science, y’all.

Moreover, fetal-cell procurement has undoubtedly created a market for those highly valued murdered babies, whose body parts actually go for top dollar when harvested while the child is still alive. Remember the investigative journalist who exposed Planned Parenthood abortionists openly discussing this? It’s no secret. It’s big business! It’s just supply and demand, y’all.

“It’s MUCH more complex than naysayers would have you believe,” Deacon James notes. Yep, it’s we “naysers” who are actually urging the globohomers to “peer past the obvious,” as Frederic Bastiat advised. So let’s have a real conversation, shall we, gentlemen?!

I was trying my best here to not get distracted by those mocking increased immune health through proven methods like vitamin D and zinc, and yes, even elderberry extract. Just get the jab, Nazi! Trust the liars, fascist! Don’t question the narrative, Judas!

Funny that some folks screech at you for pointing out that ivermectin may be a good medicine for drastically reducing mortality rates, even though the WHO agrees. But it is you who are the crazy one for noting how suspect it is that the global “health” organization still won’t recommend the cheap therapeutic alternative.

Even King Fauci testified before Congress that it takes about 7 years for the typical vaccine to be developed, yet here we are at 120 million “emergency use” experimental jabs and counting. And still we must “double the pace” and do more, more, more, demand the malicious medical bullies like Dr. Ezekiel “death panels” Emanuel.

Ugh. I sometimes feel like I’m living in “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” and the whole world is filled with Nurse Ratchets. But then I remember my “covid-denying” cohorts who proclaim such globohomer-triggering gems as this:

Let the little children come unto Me, but only if they are vaccinated according to the CDC Schedule. #ThingsJesusNeverSaid

Where two or three vaccinated are gathered in My Name, there I am also. #ThingsJesusNeverSaid

Greet one another with a holy kiss, except if you’re unvaccinated. #ThingsSaintPaulNeverSaid

No gentlemanly treatment for dissenters

I’m not exactly sure if Fr. Tom is being as dismissive or not, so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt. What I am sure of is that it is an increasingly common occurrence in American Orthodoxy that priests walk on egg shells around progressive Orthodox, self-policing and always trying to be “fair” and “loving” and “edifying” to left-wing subversives, while the-fiery hot wrath of the patriarchy is doled out with abandon to right-wing mamas and Ortho bros.

If I were a blue-haired wannabe deaconness who had a crush on the priest’s wife, I would fully receive an empathetic pastoral ear. If I were an Orthodox grrrrl who pushed LGBT as doctrine or a priest who’s unapologetically woke, mum’s the word. Heck, if I were a transhumanist who identified as satan’s cat, many priests would at least give lip service to my struggles, if they labeled them as struggles at all.

And because we have 13 months of overwhelming evidence, we know darn well how we’d be treated if we supported altering our time-honored Liturgy and ancient rites out of irrational fear. That’s not cautious; it’s caustic.

It ain’t water under the bridge

Fr. Tom’s claim is more circular reasoning than it is a fait accompli. A “water under the bridge” scenario would require the course be irreversible and presumably would encompass some measure of self-reflection and lessons learned. After all, uncorrected mistakes over time can add up to separate people from Christ.

Plus, this is not the first time that government mandates, social pressure, and bishop directives regarding a sickness have been used to manipulate the Church. Just ask those who suffered under the Bolshevik yoke.

As Edward Roslof explains in “Red Priests: Renovationism, Russian Orthodoxy, and Revolution, 1905-1946,” “Parish churches were often closed when they refused to register clergy or because of the threat of ‘epidemics, that is, on the pretense of preventing the spread of disease by parishioners who gathered together for worship.”

And it sure won’t be the last. Just ask us “covid-deniers” who’ve been suffering under the gas lighting, belligerence, and censorial culture within the Church for more than a year. We boldly proclaim, “This is all reversible, fathers!”

Just consider William’s heavyhearted question. It highlights so brightly the terrorism under which too many people have been held captive. The never-ending scare tactics and changing goal posts are so effective precisely because no discussion is allowed. That’s the true propagandistic power of a narrative when it goes unchallenged.

The Body of the Church

According to the Orthodox Study Bible (OSB), there are Four “Orders” in Church Government, the first of which is laity, who are also “called ‘saints,’ the ‘faithful,’ and ‘brethren’ … (and) are the people of God, the ‘priesthood.’ … It is from among the laity that the other three orders [the deacons, priests, and bishops] emerge.”

“In the Orthodox Church, authority is resident in all four orders, with the bishop providing the center of unity. His authority is not over the Church, but within the Church,” the OSB adds.

“Church leadership does not consist of one or more orders functioning without the others. Rather the Church, with Christ as Head, is conducted like a symphony orchestra, a family, the body of Christ, where all the members in their given offices work together as the dwelling place of the Holy Trinity.” That is Orthodoxy’s criteria, not mine.

Perhaps Manolo’s ego would get a little deflated if he read Father John Whiteford’s essay on Holy Communion during times of plague. Or if that’s a little too radical for his sensibilities, he could always just peruse what his jurisdiction’s own website has to say about the spread of disease and Liturgical matters.

Is that love?

I wonder how many covid “vaccine” injuries, adverse drug reactions, and deaths here and abroad will be considered too many? Globohomers dismiss such queries as tin-foil mad hattery, and the more honest ones will even sometimes opine, “Well, the risks harm few and help many.” However, it is this very same masked ilk whose muffled but malevolent shouts can be heard from the highest phase-three, socially-distance-approved rooftop, “If lockdowns/vaccines save just one life, then it’s worth it.”

Well, apparently, even the FDA is second-guessing that “thinking,” having just paused the Johnson & Johnson jab due to reports of blood clots. These are similar complaints to that of Europe’s AstraZeneca “vaccine,” which even the EU admitted is linked to deaths caused by blood clotting, well, before the centralized drug-regulating agency decided to then deny it. Science!

Possibly the worst part of this “great reset” rigamarole is that all the tyranny, corruption, and needless suffering is being done in the name of fighting a virus that has only a .07% chance of killing people — a dubiously high stat since it’s ceding to the elites their greatly inflated mortality inputs and not factoring in the sad reality that more than 1/3 of those US deaths have occurred in nursing homes. This is the “necrosis of love.”

“The choice of not being vaccinated does not endanger public health, as long as it does not abolish another person’s right to receive the vaccine – and with it, any protection it provides,” notes Hagiorite Monk Paul, Biologist, MD Molecular Biology and Biomedicine, of Vouleftiria, Holy Mountain.

“Consequently, that which is condemnable is every kind of complaisance that criminalizes a person’s stance towards living in a body free of suspicious vaccines, and which transforms societies … to herds of undecided and expendable animals.”

Beasts aren’t blessed with the gifts of verbal communication, free will, and discernment. We are, my fellow Christians, and utilizing them is our responsibility. It may not be deemed popular, but wisdom rarely is. Glory to God in the highest.

A few additional resources for your “anti-science” stockpile:

Dissident Mama, episode 32 — Betsy Ball Clark
Your Facebook Friends are Wrong About the Lockdown: A Non-Hysterics View of Covid-19
COVID-19 Vaccines Likened to ‘Hacking the Software of Life’ with Dr. Joseph Mercola
The Proof: Many Aborted Babies are Used in Vaccine Creation with Dr. Stanley Plotkin
Vaccines, Abortion & Fetal Tissue: Right to Life Michigan
Charlotte Lozier Institute: Fetal Tissue & Genetics
Human Cell Lines and the COVID Vaccine with Dr. Pamela Acker
The Dangers of the Covid-19 Vaccine with Dr. Steven Hotze
Fear of Germs and Holy Things: From the “Spiritual Counsels” of St. Paisios of Mount Athos
St. Paisios: “If You Receive the ‘Inoculation,’ You will be ‘Marked’” as explained by Fr. Peters Heers

Source: Dissident Mama – Globohomers gone wild, part 2

No country for wise men

By Daniel B. Rundquist

Just calm down already. Really. Sit down and relax. Take a breath. Turn off your television. Americans today are so on edge and hypersensitive to every soundbite we hear these days. Don’t worry that you’ll miss anything; the media vomits out another breathless panic attack inciting soundbite about every four hours. You’ll be fine if you miss one or two of them. Let us take a few minutes to look around and see where we are.

It is clear that we have been driven to become a now hopelessly divided nation. Our issues continue to deepen and become more serious by the day, and these changes have nothing whatsoever to do with the Covid-19 virus or the so-called vaccines to treat them. Our issues are fundamental ones that one political party is driving. They are in fact, purposely pushing the nation over the metaphorical cliff into the political abyss of anarchy, which, they hope, will be followed by dictatorship.

It is, in fact, the Saul Alinsky program being executed flawlessly. The tools employed in this process are in fact anything that can cause fear or mistrust – that is because with either of these, especially fear, it is easy to manipulate an entire society in short order. Covid has worked beautifully as the latest of these tools–we have maskers against the non-maskers, vaccinated people against the “anti-vaxxers,” Covid believers and covid deniers, and so on. 

In the midst of all of this, we have lost many other things along the way; including our collective capability and for reason, logic, understanding, curiosity, accountability, compassion, scientific methodology, common sense, and wisdom. These things are all being made obsolete and by a large degree, outlawed by the party in control. Not only is this alarming and dangerous, it was also predictable by those who have bothered to study history. 

Do you perhaps think that this is a bit of drama and sensationalism on my part? I’m not alone in this line of thought, just ask any Russian over the age of 30. Abbot Tryphon (Parsons) of the monastery of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia in honor of the All-Merciful Savior in Washington state remarked in August, 2020 that:

“In my opinion, behind-the-scenes actors, who compelled people to take to the streets, are trying to start a revolution. What is happening now in the United States has a lot of signs similar to those that took place in Russia before the overthrow of the tsar … The United States has never been as divided as it is now – except during the Civil War of 1861-1865. But then there was a clear division between the North and the South, whereas now the differences are pushing the state boundaries. This occurs in the realm of consciousness and mentality.”

Conventional wisdom which has brought our nation out of so many hard times and crises prior, has been completely demonized. We have been told to substitute raw emotions and political narratives in its place. This is why we see rioting, looting, and civil unrest across the nation which of course helps the entire agenda of “transforming America” along. How can we restore conventional wisdom? First, we must understand what it is.

When people graduated from school we used to tell them that “the learning never stops.” It is still true. There are many things that we will need to learn both from school and outside the classroom. The sooner that we learn them the better off the remainder of our lives may be.

Lesson 1: Information, Knowledge, and Wisdom.

It is also true that we live in what is called today the “Information Age.” Anyone with a computer or a cell phone can access Google and find information about anything at any time. This, perhaps ironically, has worked against the effort to truly educate people properly.

Nowadays people really think they are intelligent because they can get an answer from the internet in seconds. Academia as a whole facilitates the perpetuation of this cruel myth by their continued and deliberate degradation of the type of learning material presented to students in classrooms, and the constant lowering of grading and testing standards, which is well documented and designed to support the Leftist political narrative.

We have these three things, information, knowledge, and wisdom, which are today commonly thought of and assumed to be the same things. They are certainly not the same and knowing the difference is a must. 

Information can be thought of as simple data. That’s all it is. It is not creative, intelligent, or active. It is more like a road sign that says, “Speed Limit 45 MPH.” This information neither drives the car nor makes the road safe. We are exposed to a lot of information every day.

Knowledge is rather more involved. My definition may differ with that found in a dictionary. Knowledge is a skill set that can use information to perform a task and create an outcome. So while “information” shows us what numbers are, your applied knowledge in arithmetic using those numbers will allow us to solve math problems or balance a checkbook.

Specifically you can apply this knowledge to learn that because you worked this month, you received four deposits of $1,000 dollars each on every Friday into your checking account totaling $4,000, for example. If you did not have basic information about real numbers then you would have no clue as to why you needed to work, and if you did work anyway, you would have no concept of what it meant to have deposits of money into the bank. Knowledge of basic arithmetic also leads to the conclusion that spending for the month should not exceed $4,000.

In the driving analogy, knowledge of how to drive a car puts you on the road, but the information about the speed limit posted on the sign lets you understand that the DOT does not consider that road to be safe above 45 MPH. 

Wisdom then requires both information and knowledge but with an added ingredient of experience. Wisdom sees beyond the present in many cases and is able to drive favorable results usually by capitalizing on some positive thing or at least avoiding or mitigating a negative.

At the bank again, while knowledge tells you how to manage your money and not overdraw your account, wisdom reminds you that there will be serious penalties from the bank and your creditors if you do so. Wisdom shows you the potential outcomes of actions based on information (ex. bank policy says you cannot overdraw, lays out penalties for doing it, and state law says you can be prosecuted for writing bad checks) and knowledge (ex. you have the skills to keep your spending under control and your account balanced). Experience, either your own or by the observed actions of others, is the catalyst that drives wisdom to be valuable (ex. you totally understand why not to overdraw your bank account and so you can react proactively to take measures not to do it).

Again with the driving analogy, you have the information of the speed limit being 45 MPH, you are knowledgeable to be able to drive the car on this road, but wisdom (using additional information of seeing a police officer ahead) reminds you that exceeding the speed limit may get you a speeding ticket from that police officer sitting in his car at the bottom of the hill.

In summary, most information we can source from the internet to be sure, but it also comes to us through observation of our own. Knowledge can be discovered in books, through personal instruction, or on the internet also – if we don’t know how to do something, usually there is some guy who made a YouTube video showing you how to do it. Wisdom, however, requires experience, memory, and critical thinking skills to be applied to the information and knowledge you acquire. 

When you are presented with any material at any time, we may think immediately to categorize it. This alone will help us in applying it correctly — or discarding it — but in either case NOT mistaking either for wisdom.

If we wanted to derive wisdom directly instead of having to learning it all from scratch, there is in fact a shortcut to in finding it. The best repositories for wisdom are our senior citizens and veterans of the Greatest Generation. They have seen it all, done it all, and often know it all. They seem to universally understand common sense and are happy to explain it to us and warn us about the problems associated with ignoring it. We are now losing them at an alarming rate.

The wisdom that the seniors know runs contrary to the current political climate in America and so it seems obvious why democrat run states placed Covid patients into nursing homes, infecting them with the virus. Some reports now show that 50% of the total reported Covid fatalities were patients in nursing homes. This of course, means that the survivability rate for the rest of the population outside of the nursing homes is actually double what is being reported. But let’s not allow the facts get in the way of the truth. This is no longer a country for wise men.

Source: Dissident Mama – No country for wise men

Episode 228 – Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood (1:37:00)

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Boy was I wrong about the premise of this movie. This is an ambitious attempt at an origin story of sorts that leaves the main villains of the lore as mere side-pieces. We’ll be discussing this one with a former police officer.

We do get some fun moments where freedom is highlighted and some Magna-Carta-esque pushback on the divine right of kings.

Every Englishman’s home is his castle is a pretty strong line.

We’re also proud to announce that our YouTube video for this episode now features actual video footage of the show, check it out here and be sure to hit that subscribe button!

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