Last and First Men envisions a kind of Xtian church taking up the path of communist endeavor all the way to revolution. This need not be anything dogmatic or anything like a coup d’etat on the left. A streamlined ‘church’ at the level of thought can (in fact, Engels almost did this exercise ages ago in the 1840’s) connect the ‘materialist’ left with a larger circle of humanity, its religious concerns, superstitions, and genuine epiphanies. This church at the level of thought can realize itself at any moment but in the general case, we can simply recollect the xtian source of the first communist movement. It was a blunder of amnesia for ‘historical materialists’ to think religion was always reactionary. The reality is the ‘revolutionary’ buddhism of the axial age and the same for the early Xtian movement, growing out of the judaic-zealot ‘revolution’ against rome. We should see that the ‘roman’ xtian was soon coopted but that there was always a seditious assumption among those of the catacomb, and the metaphor of the virtual future in the theme of the ‘church of god’ and the ‘church of man’ was a powerful prophetic religion of religious metaphors of social transformation. Although we can’t clone the past, we can come to see that the Munzerian explosion at the early modern has seeded our future modernity with the task of an analogous futurist/prophetic movement, now at the limits of the capitalist universe. Xtian communism is a prophesy of the early modern, and the laughter of the frozen zombies of reactionary religion will soon confront the results predicted by the citizens of the reformation. In a finesse of dialectical equilibrium this was accompanied by the Calvinist conversion to capitalist greed in a new demonic of the ‘virtues’, and this will play itself out until the moment of the Big Flip and the moneychangers are thrown out of the temple. Once and or all.
The idea of a virtual church (as in the Preface to LFM) is useful as almost more efficient than the realization of an actual religious cult. The latter remains entirely possible: any xtian church that decides to move in relation to social justice has entered this terrain already and this can help xtians realize their long lost aspiration to a new ‘kingdom’, one that was conceived and then realized as the church of rome which soon begat the sense of its temporal failure. So the stakes have been set for millennia and right on schedule the last wager is set.
I would not ask any historical materialist to envisage sentimental religion as his new belief mongering conversion. Historical materialism was a useful right of passage to clear the mind of spiritual nonsense. But the core idea of a church born of the virtual future in the revolution of the kingdom is ‘grand cliche’ with bullseye aim. And its time is coming. In fact, it is here.
And there is a new new age rumor: the astral conversion of ‘Marx’ to the ‘church of and in the virtual future’.
We should discuss further the issue of jews and xtians in any conception of an xtian future. I think this is both a deadly question and a hidden venue to an interesting outcome: the jew as outsider all over again, along with jewish fascination with the superman comic (their bourgeois contribution to the future of all and everything): the jew as sacrifice in a croyleyan apocalypse of the magical sacrifice…What? something more mundane: the disguises of the ‘overman’ in a jewish vagrancy of the spirit….
If that doesn’t scare you we can add some thrills, and a serious way to keep a munzerian church for foundering in antisemitism, etc, etc…the ‘private eye’ path to a reckoning of the origin of the Holocaust…To be continued…