My response to an article in today’s Telegraph on the beatification of Pope John Paul II:
“[the] sexual abuse of children by priests . . [which] he swept . . under the carpet, [was] hardly the conduct of a saint.”
Of course not. It was the conduct of someone more interested in the authority and POWER of the church he headed and so strongly and self-interestedly identified with.
“This was the miracle that Vatican rules require for the beatification to take place at all (a second is now needed for canonisation).”
This, I think, illustrates the gullibility on which the POWER of the Catholic church depends.
“. . he did not win over the dissenters in his flock, but that didn’t stop him commanding attention and respect.”
“Flock” is an appropriate way of describing the “sheeple” whose belief in and identification with the Catholic church give it so much POWER. Although, if it works to your material advantage (as in the case of Catholic clergy and academics), you are more a shepherd than a sheep, with a vested interest in being gullible.
“ . . the enduring place in our national life of tradition and authority, [which for Catholics] the papacy continues to [serve].”
This, I suggest, reflects man’s deep and inherent tribal nature, which civilisation teaches us to suppress, deny, ridicule, trivialise or demonise (e.g. as “racist”), while at the same time manipulating and exploiting it subliminally for its own (perverted Darwinian) purposes.
Our original tribe having been usurped by the state and a money economy (civilisation), has left us with a profound emotional need for a substitute, be it the STATE itself (posing as our NATION), our religion, company, political party or ideology, football team, or whatever, all of which manipulate and exploit, but rarely truly satisfy, our need for tribal identity and loyalty.