There is a story that wise men tell of an Enchanted Infant once born into this world. He was, they say, so ancient that nothing created came before Him; yet His birth into this world was attended by all the frailty and helplessness of any man child. His coming had been foretold by prophets and longed for by loyal hearts because it would establish peace and unity for mankind. Kingdoms and peoples and nations would put themselves under His gracious rule, which would be marked by a transcendent goodness and justice never before known.
But His coming was hated by others; it became, indeed, an occasion for the horrible spilling of blood.
As He advanced in years, He fulfilled what had been foretold of Him, but not in the exact way that many had expected. He cloaked His majesty in humility, His might in meekness. He seemed at times the very opposite of a king or a conqueror, yet He was both. Eventually, His enemies seemed to gain the upper hand, and, after conspiracies and betrayals, He was captured, tormented, and murdered.
But then something happened that was foreseen yet unexpected. It changed everything…
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It is a wonderful story, is it not? Thankfully, its veracity does not in the least detract from its beauty as a story.
Now, stepping outside the genre of “storytelling,” we can speak of Jesus Christ with great dogmatic precision in the words of the Athanasian Creed:
Thus the right faith is that we believe and confess that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is both God and man. As God, He was begotten of the substance of the Father before time; as man, He was born in time of the substance of His Mother. He is perfect God; and He is perfect man, with a rational soul and human flesh. He is equal to the Father in His divinity, but inferior to the Father in His humanity.…
The story and the creed are two very different approaches, but which came first?
When the Son of God became man, He who was eternal entered time and became a subject of history, becoming thereby the protagonist of an amazing story — one no less amazing for its being completely true. Before the dogma of the Incarnation could be grasped at all by the human intellect — as in the wonderful Creed just quoted — the story had to be told. Indeed the story of Jesus Christ, the narrative of the Gospel, had to be told even before the more fundamental doctrine of the Trinity could be known. It was in the midst of that very story that the Trinity was revealed in the Baptism in the Jordan, the Transfiguration, and the sending of the Apostles to baptize all nations.
God gives us the truth of Divine Revelation in a narrative before He gives it to us in doctrinal formulae. Even “the Law” of the Old Testament — the Pentateuch — narrates history, including the only inspired account of Creation of the world. In telling that story, God imparts fundamental doctrine to us.
Today we are drowning in a welter of false narratives that were carefully crafted to attack the Christian “metanarrative” that God gave us in Divine Revelation — from Genesis to the Apocalypse, along with all the accompanying oral tradition. Pseudo-intellectual attacks on Creation, on the historicity of the Gospels, and on man’s place in the cosmos have been with us a long time. The enemies of Jesus Christ must keep supplementing these old false narratives with new ones if they are to achieve their objectives. Among the many false narratives that assail us today is the pseudo-scientific one that is being used right now to advance globalism, wealth concentration in the hands of financial elites, and population control. I speak, of course, of the oligarchs’ Covid-19 narrative.
Having considered that God has given us stories, and briefly mentioning also that His enemies have their stories, too, we would do well to consider for a moment the nature, necessity, and efficacy of stories or narratives. James Corbett, something of a specialist in propaganda and mass manipulation, offers some wise words in response to the question, “What’s the most powerful weapon ever invented?” The following extended excerpt is well worth pondering:
Story is the most powerful weapon. Narrative. Ideas presented in such a way as to provoke certain thoughts or actions.
With a gun you can kill a man. With a bomb you can kill a family. With a nuke you can level a city. But with a story you can control the world.
This is how billions of people around the world have been locked up as prisoners in their own homes this past year. Not because there is an inexhaustible supply of police thugs standing on every street corner ready to shoot anyone who steps outside of their home, but because a narrative has been constructed such that the vast majority want to stay home. Give a society the right narrative and they will gladly lock themselves inside their own prison and hand over the key.
This is why billions around the globe are prepared to roll up their sleeves for an experimental, unproven “vaccine” for a disease with a 99% survival rate. The masses have been given a narrative whereby this “vaccine” is going to deliver them from a deadly plague. It doesn’t matter what counter-evidence is presented to them; the ones who take the vaccine are the righteous heroes of this story, and those who question the vaccines are the villains.
This is also why—as I’m at pains to point out over and over again in my #PropagandaWatch series—the powers that shouldn’t be spend so much time, money and effort propagandizing the public. If the world could be ruled over simply by posting armed guards on every street corner and listening devices in every home, you better believe that those who seek to rule over you would do that instead. But how could they get the armed guards to police their fellow citizens? How could they get the snoops to listen in on their neighbors? Where would the enforcers come from? The population needs to be told a compelling story about why the rulers are ruling and why it is wrong to resist their rule. If such a story is secure in their minds, they will happily police themselves.
The foregoing is not all there is to it. The Goliath that appears to have won the day is not unconquerable. There are smooth stones with which a modern-day David might bring him down:
There is a flip side to this seemingly depressing insight, however. Yes, people can be tricked into enslaving themselves through propaganda and narrative manipulation. To a large extent, that explains the situation we find ourselves in today. But the inverse is also true. We can be freed by a narrative that helps us to break out of our mental prison. One storyteller with a compelling tale to tell can re-frame our collective reality in an instant, and the world will change all at once.
Mr. Corbett develops these ideas at greater length in his Solutions Watch episode entitled, “Writing A New Narrative.” Assisted by his thoughts, I attempted to raise awareness of our need to be good Catholic storytellers in my Reconquest Episode 308: Our Catholic Counter-Narratives.
In the space left to me, I would like to speak in terms of counter-narratives and our Catholic “grand narrative” or “metanarrative,” the latter two appellations being synonymous terms for a story that embeds the essential features of one’s world view. In the words of James Corbett,
A metanarrative is a grand narrative that … gives meaning to our lives, to the world, to our understanding of who we are and our place in the world. That is the metanarrative that guides our actions. We all have some big story about what it is that is happening, why we’re here, what is happening to us and what are we doing and what is our role in all of this — whether that’s a consciously formulated metanarrative … or whether that’s just the unspoken, un-thought-of assumptions that guide our actions. [Transcribed from “Writing a New Narrative.”]
This is important because, in place of a Christian world view, we are constantly being propagandized with a corrosively anti-Christian metanarrative via the the media, the entertainment industry, and Big Tech. I am convinced that many in the Church, including some among our leaders, uncritically accept patently false, immoral, and absurd ideas simply because they have been brainwashed by this metanarrative. Indifferentism, Liberalism, Americanism, and Modernism have, of course, facilitated this mental colonization, much as a bad diet weakens one’s immune system and facilitates infection.
There is an answer to the powerful false Covid-19 narrative. No, the “pandemic” is not a modern version of the Black Death that Saint Anthony Fauci, the knight in shining lab coat, will deliver us from with his benevolent curatives of masks, social-distancing, lock-downs, and manifold jabs. On the contrary, the true narrative — more accessible now, thanks largely to Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. (see here and here) — is that Dr. Fauci is the highly paid front-man for a criminal cartel of drug developers who profit obscenely from demonizing effective therapeutics so that they can hawk expensive, ineffective, and dangerous drugs for a viral infection that the cartel itself actually developed in government-funded labs. In the true version, Fauci is the villain, helping to develop experimental pharmaceuticals that will enrich his fellow cartel members while also quite possibly advancing the population-control agenda of his fellow travelers and the despotic control agenda of a nasty cabal of globalist elites.
Because these battling narratives are at the center of a global phenomenon that has been front-and-center for the better part of two years, I believe that we are at an historical moment when some truly malignant agendas can be exposed. There is an opportunity to raise consciousness about these agendas, and that opportunity should not be lost.
Let us not lose sight of the higher objective, though. While truth is truth and the outing of this villainous Fauci character is a simple matter of justice quite important to these times, our Catholic metanarrative is much more important. This is the true story that gives meaning to life. This is the true narrative that explains our origins and our destiny, and therefore gives meaning to our present in the way that nothing else can. It answers all of life’s existential questions. And — need I say it? — it is necessary for salvation! Our grand narrative incorporates not only the inspired data of revelation, but also the lives of the saints, the great historical project of the evangelization of nations, and the progress of Jesus’ Church from her founding till her glorious final union with her Bridegroom. This metanarrative trumps the lies foisted on us by the globalists, atheists, oligarchs, and their fellow-travelers; and, we might add, it also trumps the false teachings — to quote an infallible document — “not only [of] pagans, but also [of] Jews and heretics and schismatics.” Not very ecumenical, I know, but neither is Jesus Christ.
THIS is a story to be told with fervor and urgency.
In this light, the Christmas story itself is not only a tender and pleasant story, but a powerful antidote to the monstrous words and deeds of our modern-day Herods. Mothers and fathers — DADS ESPECIALLY — tell your children this story. Use the creche, point to the Christ Child in the crib, show them the wise men on their way from the East, tell your boys and girls how manly Saint Joseph was, and how holy and beautiful Our Lady was. Don’t leave the passing on of our Catholic Great Narrative to be a priestly monopoly. It is your job first. And when Christmas is over, continue the practice of telling stories to your children. Aside from much-needed “face-time” with Mom and Dad, this makes for a wholesome, “organic” passing on of the Faith. Saint Thérèse of Liseux spoke of the profound impact that her father had on her by reading to the family daily from The Liturgical Year of Dom Prosper Guéranger.
Instead of letting our inimical cultural elites dull your children’s minds with toxic pabulum, nourish their souls with the fortifying meat of Catholic faith and culture. It may, quite literally, be their salvation.