It is significant in light of our previous post on buddhism to consider the nature of a revolutionary religious movement, both in antiquity: none other than buddhism itself, and the modern Xtian Protestant cult of Thomas Munzer, a proto-communist Christianity. As religions pass into rightwing oblivion the nature of revolutionary ‘religion’ becomes lost and we can see that radical protestant Xtianity never even got its chance at bat, and the result now is visible in the extreme stupidity of Bible Belt Xtianity, a form of religious trash that can have little connection to ‘Jesus’. The point here is that in trying to escape the backward drift of religion the modern left became entirely antagonistic to religion. But the result has been limited by the nature of the nineteenth century moment of Feuerbach and the 1840’s period of the birth of positivism. The radical left has itself become frozen in this period, and the result is an inability to communicate with the larger society of now archaic religions. The unexpected character of this outcome is a disappointing surprise to many who expected the early nineteenth century to flush out the whole of the past and proceed to a so-called ‘secular’ future defined by science, secular humanism, and neuroscience. It didn’t happen that way, and we see the disappointing, for many, outcome of the religions of the Axial Age surviving the attempted journey into the future. However, that is misleading and no religious traditionalist should feel confident this situation will endure. WE have criticized the new atheists, but the reality is what they often represent: an impatience with religious legacies that suddenly no longer make any sense to people. Xtians need to examine their legacy to see this: it hardly makes any sense any more. In a strange way the Hollywood movie has undermined Xtianity: you sit down to watch an entirely moving and classic tale and the tale of Lazarus interpolates and ruins the classic tale. In a half hour one might recover, but then the feeding of the five thousand wrecks the building tale all over again. By the time of the end tale of the crucified jesus the power of the story recovers, almost, for the classic of classic tales that it is, and then the ultimate bullshit flop down happens with the resurrection gimmicks trying to carry the now lost story its Hollywood handlers have turned into a fake: they clearly have no faith in the tale beyond the realm of easy money. And the realism of the movie genre backfires subliminally, the worst of outcomes. The Christian unconscious starts to endure a nervous unconscious skepticism. And the end here is apparently damnation due to skepticism of the miracle of jesus. A lack of faith in the Hollywood movie. This circumstance is going to prove terminal. It might have scared many once, but now it produces the aggravated revulsion of secular humanists. Not surprising, and the strange thing is the way the ambition to master the miraculous so backfires at the hands of the surest murder, Hollywood special effects. The whole thing is ironic death by bad taste at the hands of the villains of Hollywood.
I think that the left should stop itself in its tracks and see that it is the only mule able to carry the savior, and reinvent religion, no, come close to such a fateful mistep, and not take it, instead liberate mankind from Axial Age religion, but do it right. Historical materialism just can’t perform the task. The bad science of the nineteenth century doesn’t rate the job.
A form of stylized ‘buddhism’ practically falls in the lap of radical activists of the socialist lineage, and the realization that the communist left has a murdered prophet of its own ought to prompt the left to something better than materialist fictions after spiritual fictions. In any case, the nature of buddhism being a forestalled revolution, and the radical Xtian onslaught still another, the left can handily, without mythmongering or religious sentimentality claim its brethren and comrades of the ‘revolutions’ unfinished from the Axial Age. Meanwhile Spartacus the Movie, while it lacks the pizazz of the ‘sword and sandal epics’ with or without a savior subplot nonetheless has almost all the crucial elements of a marxist ‘saga’, yet to be written, and perhaps to remain so. A new version of the latter playing on the former is what I predict for hyper-Xtian revolutions of the Marx succession. The separation of church and state has to enter here, but I think that religions as revolutions have a logic of their own, so we left with the question of whether yogis renouncing the world will roam the socialist societies of the future. The classic Samkhya in any case shows the issue of materialism is not really the issue in the critique of religion.