By John Immel
And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.
Declaration of Independence 1776
Freedom is a given in American experience: her people insulated from the tides of religious and secular despotism that dominates the whole of world history. Roughly five generations have been born into the independence that is America, and as always happens, the heirs of fortune never grasp what their great, great, great, great, great grandfathers worked to achieve. Liberty secured for posterity is not a divine right, but an encompassing stewardship. Failing to sustain the mental and physical rigor that created the wealth results in the inevitable generational erosion as the fortune slowly washes away into the abyss of irresponsibility, sloth, and entitlement. The symptoms of our cultural bankruptcy are expressed in a tide of intellectual evasion, soul-crushing guilt and social turmoil. America is reaping what she has sown. What she has sown is the abandonment of effective moral philosophy.
Of course when I say morality, people immediately think about what someone does with body parts. If the starting point is Epicurus, the inevitable moral philosophy is hedonism. If the starting point is Stoicism merged with Neo Gnosticism, the outcome is Victorian England. To put this contrast in American parlance would be the spectrum of sexual moral philosophy between the stoned Hippies frolicking at Woodstock versus the teetotaling Puritans with scarlet letters.
Sensuality—its presence or absence—as a moral starting place has been offered since the beginning of man’s quest for meaning, and is an utter failure in giving guidance.
Man has spent the ages alternately groping his body for a culminating sensation, denying his body in the name of enlightenment, or erecting stone statues in homage to an Other-Worldly realm. Each perspective was an effort to find a cohesive world view that made man’s life and existence make sense. In all instances he found little more than tyranny, destruction, and suffering.
Occasionally, the clouds of oppression would part, fleeting rays of light would strike man’s mind and he would realize that pursuing truth was in his best interest. The result was consistent: life sprang up, suffering subsided, and prosperity emerged. It would make sense that he should persist in the cause and effect of this action, expanding and growing as far as his understanding would carry him. But no, with striking regularity, Man would declare war against the truth and exchange it for a lie. In short order the hard-won life and blessing and freedom would shrink back to the primordial haze of collective tribal degradation.
What was the lie that man exchanged for truth?
The answer is: man must pay to appease the gods in their endless hostility or purchase grudging benevolence of a demonic benefactor. This was how man believed he fended off life’s pain and suffering. The ultimate sick joke of human existence is man bowing before an image chipped out of stone, believing that somehow it might provide a way to think about life. Curiously enough, the goat, or bird, or snake, or calf inevitably demands that someONE must be sacrificed … for the benefit of others. The bloodshed ran thick and deep, yet in spite of the endless propitiation, the hurt, and subjugation endured. Instead of stopping, Man continued with the doctrines of Molech, Kali, Esus and myriad of other mini-gods and deities that demanded destroying individuals for the wellbeing of the tribe.
But stone and wood does not speak: only the vain fantasies of men’s minds, in solidarity with death, can conceive such injustice as good. The oldest manmade idea, the idolatry that has dominated the ages, the leading human philosophy, is the demand of individual destruction for the greater good. This evil theme dominates the whole of Man’s savage history.
Historically, in times of peace and the inevitable prosperity that accompanies, when he wasn’t in the midst of sacrificing by war a distant tribe for his clan’s wellbeing, Man realized that something was wrong. But he could not find the solution to the problem: his mind was dark, his actions unruly, and his soul despaired that he was created for no other reason but to suffer. Man’s greatest psychic pain is his inability to integrate ethical knowledge with physical action. The disharmony between Will and Action places man in an endless destructive cycle of guilt, shame, and dis-integration. This state secures man’s death.
Millennia ago, Yahweh, an obscure deity in a pantheon of deities, approached an even more obscure man in the city of Ur—a man fully indoctrinated in the idolatry of sacrifice—and told him to take a walk. By ever increasing measures, this obscure god, revealed himself in name and deed. With each name Yahweh separated this desert wanderer from death and sacrifice, insisting that He was the source of Life and Blessing and man was the recipient. This man left the land of the Chaldeans and emerged from the Middle Eastern wastes an individual with a great name: Abraham. With this event, the ego was born; the moment in time when man first encountered progress, improvement, blessing, and a world view that affirmed his INDIVIDUAL LIFE.
Thousands of years would pass before the plan to liberate man from his solidarity with death was complete. In the fullness of time, the greatest ambush in all of eternity, this obscure Yahweh, who made cameo appearances through human history, suckered his adversary with the doctrine of sacrifice to take back a monopoly on death. Had the principalities and powers known, they would never have crucified the body of truth. With that culminating action, Death’s power over Man was destroyed so that light could spring forth, eternal, liberating the totality of human existence. This event ended the dis-integration of man’s body from his mind and spirit. This event started the return of man to one harmonious self: a unity of intention and action.
“Peace on Earth Good will toward Men,” rings forever after signaling the end of hostilities from God to man. For those who would but ask, Man is born from death to life ending the hostility of man’s mind to truth. However, for those who would not ask, the hostility persists in a one-sided war where man deliberately, intentionally exchanges truth for a lie. This is why the state of human affairs is NO ACCIDENT.
It is no accident that a mere 500 years after man’s liberation, Plato’s collectivist, sacrifice-driven, deconstructing, dis-assembling ideology found new life in Plotinus and was integrated into Christianity via Augustine.
It is no accident that these doctrines subordinate man’s mind to a Dictated Good that inevitably elevates an oligarchy over the many.
It is no accident that through the dark ages Death was raised to an ethical ideal as men were venerated for their martyrdom.
It is no accident that doctrines of guilt, for any pleasure or happiness, beat man into submission to fulfill his predestined place as serf in the Three Estates.
It is no accident that war washed across the face of collectivist Europe in the name of God, heralded as divine calling or the manifestation of divine judgment. Religious leaders once again told man that the state of the world was God’s manifest will or the product of Man’s great sinfulness … or both. In all instances the lesson of existence: man is born to suffer.
It is no accident that man crawled out of the murk of the Dark Ages by inches against the tide of the Divine Right of Despotism’s justified tyranny.
It is no accident that Man became sickened by all things Christian as ‘conservative’ ideologies maintained their traditions of Predestination that enslaved generations of serfs in squalor to maintain the noble class in their endless idle sport of conquest.
It is no accident that Man revolted against governments bearing God’s name and rejected his existence as the source of the oppression.
It is no accident that self-ascribed atheists co-opted the Church’s doctrine of depravity, decadence, guilt, and suffering; replacing the name of God with the Greater Good as justification for the enforced march back to serfdom.
It is no accident that George Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel equated human happiness with absolute rule: a founding idea that justifies the unlimited authoritarian state in the name of the People. His ideas are the source of the assertion: man’s ideal state is in submission authority.
It is no accident that Karl Marx developed a moral philosophy that excuses sacrificing everyone to everyone else by force. His ideas are the source of the assertion that ability is the moral justification for slavery.
It is no accident that the Puritan Immanuel Kant separated man from his mind and his mind from reality. His ideas are the source of the assertion: “No one can be sure of anything,” which means the facts of reality are merely subjective; there is no right or wrong and no foundation to judge because man’s mind is incapable.
It is no accident that Auguste Comte formalized the ethical ideal of altruism, which says that actions done for self-interest are immoral. His ideas are the source of the assumption that there is no acceptable self-defense against any assault, tyranny, or destruction. To be moral, man must sacrifice himself.
It is no accident that the Social Justice has been made to look like Christian ideas, and proponents hijack bible verses with impunity to seduce people into their collectivist ends.
It is no accident that Christianity can offer little more than brotherly love and some anti-rational superstitious pixy dust piously called faith as defense against the rise of the Marxist/Socialist slaughter houses that emerge across the face of the globe: Germany, Russia, Italy, Cuba, Cambodia, North Korea, China, Brazil, and the list goes on and on.
It is no accident that the cult of death that has become the cross is rising in the United States, concurrent with the tide of European collectivist religion in American pulpits, justifying the way of the world with the handwringing moral relativism of “we’re all just sinners.”
It is no accident that we fail to defend against the tide of destruction because we concede the moral premise: man is a morally, intellectually, incompetent sacrificial animal. The only thing left to argue about is: “By what means will man be sacrificed?”
Just over 230 years ago men gathered in Philadelphia and for the first time in human history, consolidated a moral argument that rejected the core of man’s idolatrous past. They penned the following words, and the full light-of-day sprang bright and clear from the murk of collectivist tyranny that spanned the whole of human history:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
For the first time men formally said: Man lives for his OWN sake. They built a political system designed specifically to prevent the sacrifice of the one to the many, or the many to the one. This beacon of light shown across the whole world, and wherever men embrace that truth, life springs forth, suffering subsides, peace establishes, and prosperity accompanies. The superior moral argument of the American Revolution is the foundation of the greatest manifestation of peace and accompanying prosperity the world has ever seen.
But we are on the verge of losing liberty because we have lost the moral clarity of our superior ideas. Indeed, some of you squirm at the assertion that there are good and bad ideas. Some of you are indignant at my failed “humility” to consider all viewpoints as equally valid. Still more of you are incensed by the temerity that I am openly advocating “selfish” doctrines.
That cannot be helped.
So embedded are the idolatrous doctrines of collectivist sacrifice and death that to unravel them for all satisfaction before sounding the warning will be far, far too late.
Our modern day leaders have abandoned us to the intellectual tsunami. Some retreat from the realm of ideas into a vague “there were two trees in the Garden” anti-rational superstition, looking for signs and visions and begging for the Rapture. Others are diving madly back into the historic interpretive methods that extol depravity, selfishness, and sacrifice as sound “biblical” doctrine in a specific effort to create the Peoples State of Heaven on earth with them as the appropriate administrators. The first group has abandoned the field. The second group is a competitor in tyranny. The outcome is the same: they offer no defense against the ravenous wolves.
In my never to be Kantian disinterest, I contend that this state of affairs is unacceptable. Whatever ignominy or fortune may come, silence is not an option, neither is passivity, nor compromise.
My moral clarity is resolved. I reject the collectivist redefinition of freedom. I reject the idea that freedom means abandoning responsibility of life’s rigor, or a fabricated utopian fairytale, or the ability to saddle others with the “despotism of physical want,” or the equation of liberty with hedonism.
My moral clarity is resolved. I advocate the true definition of Freedom. I assert that all men are free of coercion, arbitrary power, and the extortionate orders of men in pursuit of life. The sum of a man’s life, wife, children and work-created substance are his sovereign domain: man suffers no moral recrimination. No matter the measure of his abundance, prosperity, or wealth, thou shalt not covet!
One command remains supreme: that we love one another. But the love commanded is not a moral blank check against the endless tide of indulgent actions, blind to the cause and effect of reality, or the hard-hearted plunder that leads to injustice and servitude.
America, here is what we have shirked: in this life, in this time, in this earth, man is charged with the responsibility of his own life through rational, creative work. In this life, in this time, in this earth, man is charged with the defense of his neighbor against all encroachments by enforcing proportional justice.
America, here is what we have forgotten: there is an inseparable link between thinking, freedom, life, and prosperity. Take any one of those four away and soon you will have the advance of slavery, corruption, and death.
America, here is what we have abandoned: the moral clarity America offered the world in 1776 was a superior moral creed. Our greatest exported commodity was the specific wisdom and the hard-earned understanding written in the blood of the Revolutionary War.
America, here is what we have evaded: we will accept every explanation for human poverty and suffering except one: that our altruistic ideas, energized by the force of human violence, are a catastrophic failure. The lesson of prosperity’s source is written for all to see, but like the sluggard who refuses to consider his field, men impressed with their own philanthropy use the monopoly of Government force to thieve humanity into wealth and pretend that their efforts are not responsible for the imposed misery.
America, here is what we must discover: the true moral foundations of liberty. If we are to call ourselves heirs of the Constitution, we must commit to our founding fathers moral philosophy without hesitation. Truly, if Christians are to ever be salt and light in the world—not a mocking byword of irrationality and poster children of oppressive sanctimony—we must champion that Man is not a sacrificial animal to any dictated, collective, or greater good.
America here is what we must reject: ecclesiastical establishments during more than eighteen centuries have been on trial, and their fruits have been, more or less in all places, pride and indolence in the clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity, and in both: superstition, bigotry and persecution. To achieve a different outcome, we must have an argument that rejects the premise. All doctrine at the core of the manifest historic fruit is what imperils our future. These ideas must be vigorously repelled till vain superstitions, bigotry, and persecution fade from our ranks forever.
America here is what we must know: this is the last the last place on earth. If liberty falls here, to the doctrinal justification of Marx’s economic thuggery or Mystic Despotism’s totalitarian state, there is nowhere else to go.
The moral assault appears great, but man must stand resolute in the source of his success, ability, work, and wealth. He must stand firm in the moral superiority of the Founding Fathers’ declaration. Bowing to guilt or seeking to buy off the moral recrimination of greed always fails to achieve peace. This course of action is a slow bleed towards death: today it is a finger, then a hand, then an arm, until the despots say they own your body and put a bullet in your head because you have no value to the greater good.
Our Founding Fathers understood this. They knew there was no reconciliation between freedom and tyranny, so they pledged the whole of themselves while they had the chance to act.
The choice has always been between life and death, blessing or curse. There is no tomorrow for freedom. You owe no man a penny, a drop of sweat, or a drop of blood to justify your existence. The ransom on your life was paid in full by the one person who had coin of the realm to spend. You are created an end in yourself and are endowed by your creator with natural rights—life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness.
Today is the day to defend this God-given right. Therefore, choose…
As for me and my house: I pledge my Life, Fortune, and Sacred Honor.