|This article is reprinted from the Summer 1995 issue of FIDELIO Magazine.
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Russell and others launched or supported various projects in China to destroy Suns influence, including that of the Chinese Communist Party, culminating in the 1949 revolution and later, the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. The ten-year nightmare of the Cultural Revolution can be regarded as the fruition of virtually every declared commitment Russell made concerning China policy: the return to the Legalist/Taoist form of government, the psychological and physical breakdown of the family, the destruction of science and education, the glorification of rural backwardness, the adoption of forced birth control policies, to name just a few.
Perhaps no other regime in modern history so thoroughly epitomized the Venetian ideal of Oriental Despotism than China during the Cultural Revolution, such that all schools were closed, and the entire population, including even most of the previous political leaders of the Communist Party, were forced to live at the level of the lowliest peasant. Meanwhile, the Venetian apparatus promoted the Maoist frenzy of the Cultural Revolution throughout the rest of the world.
With the death of Mao Zedong, and the popular outpouring of revulsion against the Cultural Revolution within China, the same Western apologists who had previously supported the Communists, moved rapidly to direct the emerging cultural paradigm shift into controlled channels. That required providing the Chinese with an artificial model of the West based on British free-trade economics and moral relativism (a process for which the British had gained a great deal of experience in the Nineteenth and early Twentieth centuries), while at the same time diverting any Confucian revival into the Chinese equivalent of that British moral relativismsuch as the Three Religions policy of Wang Yang-mings school of Taoist-influenced pseudo-Confucianism.
Maoism in Louvain
In 1974, at the peak of the last phase of the Cultural Revolution, and three years after Henry Kissinger opened up China, a conference was held in Louvain, Belgium, called Christian Faith and the Chinese Experience. The sponsors included the Lutheran World Federation, the Jesuit organization Pro Mundi Vita, the U.S. National Council of Churches, and Frances Action Populaire. Chairing the conference were Dr. Julia Ching, the China scholar (and Wang Yang-ming biographer) quoted above, who works closely with the Catholic theologian Hans Küng, and Canon David Paton, Anglican head of the China Study Project in England.
Reading the transcripts of this conference, it becomes clear that most of the participants were little interested in Christianity nor in China, but were launching a broader mission to promote Maoism in its most grotesque form throughout the rest of the world. The same institutions behind this conference were at the center of the growing radical environmentalist hysteria of the 1970s, sponsored by the British Royal Familys World Wildlife Fund and the various U.S. Eastern Establishment foundations, aimed at driving the world back to pre-Renaissance levels of population and standard of living.
To promote Maos Cultural Revolution required denouncing virtually everything that Christianity and Western civilization had contributed to history, a task eagerly pursued by the participants. Mao was portrayed as, variously, the new St. Paul, the new Moses leading his people to the promised land, or the second coming of Christ. An opening essay circulated at the conference, signed by the Jesuit Pro Mundi Vita organization as a whole, quotes Joseph Needham,33 the foremost British China scholar and himself a confessed Taoist (as well as a lay brother in the Anglo-Catholic Church):
The Chinese society of the present day is, I think, further on the way to the true society of mankind, the Kingdom of God if you like, than our own. I think China is the only truly Christian country in the world in the present day, in spite of its absolute rejection of all religion.
In fact, most of the priests and ministers of the churches in China, both Chinese and foreign, were either in prison or in labor camps at the time. Even those who had signed up with the Communist Party-run Three Self Patriotic Movement during the first wave of repression in the 1950s did not escape the scorn and persecution of the Red Guards.
It is not the case that the participants of the Louvain conference were ignorant of this fact, nor of the torture, mass killings, and forced labor across the country. Although the full, gruesome details were not made known until late in the 1970s, many refugees had already crossed into Hong Kong with horror stories, and many of the participants had traveled in the mainland on one of the tours arranged after Kissingers diplomatic missions. Despite the Potemkin Village aspect of the tours, people did see much of what was going on, but chose to support it anyway.
For instance, Donald MacInnis, the director of the China Program for the National Council of Churches in the U.S., who spoke fluent Chinese, spent three weeks in China the month before the conference. Seeing all the schools closed and the students sent out to work with the peasants, he told the conference:
There is a new social milieu that makes it right and proper for educated city youth to serve by the millions in labor assignments on frontier peoples communes, and for the able-bodied elderly to perform volunteer neighborhood tasks.
MacInnis reported having an overwhelming response, a renewed sense of hope for the future of mankind. The final reports of the workshops called the school closings and the forced labor a profound and inclusive educational revolution. The superlatives about the Maoist heaven rivaled those of Quesnay. Another workshop report said:
We noted the success of the new China in achieving a more ample and more equitable distribution of the goods and services basic to human existence, the growing self-reliance and sense of national dignity and universal self respect, a sense of common purpose and a communal life style, ... a significant improvement in public and private morality, in short, a society making significant observable progress in solving its ownand indeed humanitysmost urgent and seemingly intractable problems.
The speakers continually returned to the universal applicability of the Maoist experiment, especially in regard to Christians in the West, who they urged to reconsider their own worldview and ethic in the light of this sign of the times, and to Third World nations, who they urged to follow Mao. For Christians to learn from Mao included learning to hate. The workshops concluded: Animosity and hostility, such prominent features of Maoist ethics, are not antithetical to Christian love. ... Animosity is that which gives a dynamic or animating element to love. It is not surprising that the reputed founder of Liberation Theology, Gustavo Gutiérrez of Peru, was one of the speakers, acknowledging his great debt to Mao: The Chinese experience and the theories it is developing are in one way or another part and parcel of every contemporary revolutionary process.
Gutiérrez also refers positively to a concept of puerile hatred toward the dominating classes and their exploitation of the dispossessed. Gutiérrez had studied psychology at Louvain University, writing a dissertation on Freuds psychic conflicts.
As to Confucianism, the Gang of Four had recently unleashed the Criticize Lin Piao, Criticize Confucius campaign, and the conference participants marched in step to the new, politically correct line. The workshops concluded that Mao had launched the campaign against Confucius in order to prevent a possible resurgence of a class society dominated by the educated elite. ... This seems to be Chinas contribution to worldwide anti-authoritarianism.
The fig leaf of Christianity in all of this was the argument that God is the Lord of History, a phrase repeated almost as often as a sign of the times. The Lord of History is used to imply that everything that happens is Gods work, since He determines all that is, and therefore, the Maoist era must be seen as Gods plannot in the negative sense of a lesson to be learned from the failure to carry out Gods will on earth, but as a positive lesson to be emulated by all.
As the Pro Mundi Vita opening essay reports, quoting a priest who had lived in China, If the Chinese have indeed created a society with more faith, more hope and more love than the Christian West, they deserve not only attention but allegiance. As apostles of Christ, we must follow where the spirit blows. The same Jesuit essay, explaining the changes taking place in Christian thought, refers to Teilhard de Chardin as the worlds most intellectually influential Catholic and the acknowledged religious genius of the century.
The Jesuit Teilhard, who spent many years in China, hated the Chinese. Writing in the 1920s, he considered the Chinese to be primitive people beneath their varnish of modernity or Confucianism. Only when he got to Tibet and studied the Tantric Buddhism of the lamas did he decide that we could perhaps learn from the mystics of the Far East how to make our religion more Buddhist, instead of being over-absorbed in ethicsthat is to say, too Confucianist. He claimed to have learned through his experience in China primarily that some races are less able than others to contribute to the building of the world, and that there exists in the world a right of the earth to organize itself by reducing, even by force, the refractory and backwards elements.
The existentialist Catholic theologian Hans Küng has now become the leading theoretician for the New Enlightenment Sinophiles. Küng has become the central figure in a movement which proposes ecumenical alliances between the worlds religions, by reducing all religions to the level of primitive, Earth-worshipping paganism of a Taoist variety, while eliminating the idea of the nation-state altogether.
Like those at the Louvain conference, Küng insists that it is no longer necessary to be oriented against Mao and the Chinese Revolution in order to live as a Christian. Küngs work has centered on shaping the post-Mao era ideology into a New Age mode, while still maintaining a good word for Marx, Mao, and Liberation Theology. China is only a secondary target, however; Küngs primary focus is the attempt to indoctrinate the West with Taoism.
In 1988, Küng co-authored with Julia Ching a book entitled Christianity and Chinese Religions, in which they review, one at a time, the Three Religions of China. Küng goes beyond the common effort to pervert Confucianismthat of merging it into a syncretic amalgam with Taoism and Buddhismchoosing instead to openly embrace Taoism. The Tao of Taoism, he asserts, is Heideggers Being,34 and it is the basis for uniting East and West. He quotes the Nazi Party ideologue Heidegger: Tao; if only we will let these names return to what they leave unspoken, if only we are capable of this... . All is Way.35 Küng continues:
Being as the Way, the Way as Being. ... One might ask, are Taoism and the modern Western philosophy of being then reconciled at the highest level of speculative philosophy? Are East and West united in the philosophical harmonious heights? ... There is in my view a possible structural parallel in the concepts of Tao, being, and God, a parallel that could be of the greatest significance for an understanding of the absolute that bridges the cultures and religions.
The current head of the German Bishops Conference, Karl Lehmann, also wrote in defense of Heidegger, suggesting that the word God can be read in place of Heideggers word Being. We can assume that he would also concur with Heidegger (and Hans Küng) that Being is the Taoist Tao; and we have thus a reflection of the crisis in the German Catholic Church.
Küng sees the world divided into three river systems: the prophetic religions of the Semitic cultures, the mystic religions of India (including Buddhism), and the religions of wisdom and the sage in China. He seeks to synthesize these three river systems into a world ethos, while embracing Taoism as the closest approximation of that world ethos as a whole. Confucius was an elitist, writes Küng, and the Taoists saw through the central Confucian virtues of humanity and uprightness as aristocratic categories of a conservative and patriarchal ethic.
The appeal of Taoism as a world model, Küng asserts, rests to a great extent on its embrace of the occult. He defines religion in keeping with the tradition of William James Varieties of Religious Experience: Todays specialists would to a large extent agree that religions are grounded in an experimental unity of knowing, willing and feeling. The current boom in the popularity of the occult, says Küng, is not backward-oriented nostalgia, but could be a post-modern longing for a new, recognizable continuity between humanity and nature, rationality and spirituality, science and mystery, cosmic consciousness and authentic life. In praise of his fellow Taoist Carl Jung,36 Küng writes that with the exception of Jung,
until now hardly any empirical research has been done to test the factual reliability of divination. This is especially regrettable... . The existential source of the yearning for divination is to be taken seriously... . Magic and religion to this day exist simultaneously alongside and within each other, just as religion for its part has in no way been superseded by science.
The call by the Louvain conference for the West to become Maoist is not fundamentally distinct from Küng and his circles call for the West to become Taoist. In both cases, the notions of science and the nation-state developed in the Christian Renaissance are scrapped, in favor of mystical earth worship and variations of Oriental Despotism. Such radical environmentalism finds support amongst certain Taoist-influenced Chinese, including the Chan (Zen) Buddhists and the Lamaists of the Tibetan school. (This is one of the primary reasons why Taoism is promoted as a World Religion in the numerous international Unity of Religions conferences sponsored by the British royalty. When the Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey visited China in September 1994, he lectured the Chinese that they must at all costs prevent the country from developing to the level of energy throughput of the advanced sector, supposedly to prevent inevitable environmental disaster.)
Hans Küngs version of the fascist Third Wave37 is similar: China has the opportunity to learn from the negative experience of the highly modern states and mitigate in its own development the immanent destructive forces of modern science, technology, industry and democracy. Küng projected his adoption of Taoism by proclaiming that Asian theology is finding itself in opposition to developments that declare technology and industrialization to be national goals but actually only benefit the ruling elite.
The Revival of Buddhism
Küng is lying that Asian theology is finding itself to be on the side of radical environmentalismrather, Küng is himself in the forefront of a Western intervention, on behalf of the oligarchy, to impose just such a fascist ideology upon the various cultures of the Asian world. It is this which motivates his effort to undermine Confucianism, and in particular to subvert the teachings of Chu Hsi in favor of those of Wang Yang-ming, as well as his praise for Taoism. In keeping with this, Küng has taken special interest in the efforts to bring about a revival of Buddhism in China. A revived Buddhism is expected to provide the World Wildlife Fund, and the related institutions of the European monarchies, with gatekeepers for the nature reserves (both ideologically and literally), with the intention of locking up Third World nations against development, while also creating various cult structures capable of providing the cannon-fodder for British intelligence-controlled terrorist destabilizations of Asian nations.
Küng also promotes the continuing work of the Dalai Lama, head of the more extreme versions of hesychastic Tantric Buddhism, as practiced in Tibet and Mongolia. The Dalai Lama is a life-long asset of British-intelligence operations in Asia, while functioning throughout the world as an ally and promoter of the rabidly anti-growth and anti-human World Wide Fund for Nature (formerly the World Wildlife Fund), run by the British Royal Family.
In the dialogue Buddhism and Christianity, in his collection Christianity and the World Religions,38 Küng has unrestrained praise for the teachings and the practice of the two main schools of Mahayana Buddhism in China, Zen (Chan) and Pure Land (or Amida). He compares them to the Reformation and the Enlightenment in the West, which he considers to be the greatest eras of Christian history. Writes Küng:
Alongside all the outrages of Christian imperialism and colonialism, is there not also a history of tolerance, of freedom of conscience, that made an epochal breakthrough, from the Churchs standpoint, in the Reformation freedom of a Christian man and, for society as a whole, in the religious freedom of the Enlightenment (though the decisive impulses for this came from outside the Church)?
Küng compares Zen (Chan) to the European Enlightenment, explaining that Zen replaced the older, more scholastic forms of Buddhism, which were overly rational, requiring years of arduous study before achieving enlightenment. Zen provided sudden enlightenment, whereby the student need only realize that he already contains the Budddha-image inside him, to become instantaneously enlightened. This makes enlightenment accessible to the masses, without the need to be uplifted from their state of ignorance.
Küng proceeds to compare the Buddhist Pure Land sect to Protestantism. Pure Land Buddhism teaches that enlightenment is not dependent entirely on oneself, but one can get help from the Amida Buddha, primarily by repeating the Buddhas name over and overprovided that this is done in good faith. Küng compares this paradigm of faith to Martin Luthers rejection of good works as a means to gain salvation, in favor of faith alone.
Küng is not entirely wrong in these comparisons. The Venetian forces who created both the Reformation (Cardinal Gasparo Contarini and his circlewho led the Catholic Counter-Reformation as well) and the Enlightenment (such as the above-metioned Abbot Antonio Conti), were indeed drawing on a number of Oriental sources, including the atheistic Buddhist variety, in structuring ideologies to attack the Platonic/Christian vision of man created in the image of God. Küngs identification of some aspects of these parallels is accurate. The problem, of course, is that Küng is on the side of the Venetians, arguing that Christians must abandon their faith on the basis of an examination of Buddhism. Christians lives are too bent on success and achievement, says Küng, subject to the
fatal Western individualism that, by invoking the self and self-fulfillment (of the individual, the nation, or the church) has had a highly destructive impact on communal life, on Western economies, politics, and culture, even on philosophy and theology.
Küng leaves no room for doubt that he is denouncing the very process of creative development in the individual, and in the nation-state, which defines mankinds existence as superior to that of the beasts: Christians have been only too one-sided, writes Küng, in their readiness to quoteand carry outthat one verse of Genesis to subdue the earth.
Küng elsewhere calls for an end to the blind faith in progress, and for an epochal paradigm change to postmodernity, where the absolutized forces of the modern period (science, technology, industry) will be increasingly relativized for the sake of human welfare. Christianity, and all religions, must maintain a critical distance from technological and scientific developments. He praises some of the most extreme Buddhist activists for their efforts to stop the development of science and technology in Asia, such as Sulak Sivaraksa in Thailand. Sulak, Küng says, is trying to set in motion social and political improvements on the basis of authentic Buddhism. Sulak, in fact, insists that peasants have no need of machines, fertilizer, or any other technology, but should be allowed to return to the primitive methods of antiquity, to live happily staring at the backside of a water buffalo in mindless, backbreaking toilthe ideal Enlightenment noble savages.39 Küng writes, Here, prophetic Christianity meets social reform-minded Buddhism.
The Defamation of Nicolaus of Cusa
Having dismissed the pursuit of science as part of mans purpose on earth, Küng is prepared to embrace two fundamental Buddhist tenets: rejection of the reality of the physical universe, and the rejection of the intellect as the means to salvation. He goes further to identify these Buddhist concepts with Christianity! Küng says that the original Buddhists had replaced the gods of Hinduism with the concept of nirvana, or emptiness, as the Ultimate Reality. Although nirvana originally meant the extinguishing of all thoughts and emotions, and escape from the suffering of life (while denying the existence of a soul), Küng argues that under the Mahayana doctrine, nirvana took on a positive term of value, a name for the Absolute that has no attributes, and thus it expresses the deepest reality, the Absolute, what Christian theology calls God. Elsewhere, Küng argues that nirvana is the same as the Christian Heaven, both being a positive final state.
The problem here is not that Küng tries to locate a positive interpretation within the Mahayana Buddhist teachings, nor even that he tries to relate them to Christian concepts. The problem is that Küng identifies precisely those aspects of Buddhist thought which reject the necessity, or even the possibility, of scientific discovery, of the active use of the Divine Spark of reason, and equates those aspects with the God of Christianity.
Since, especially, the time of Nicolaus of Cusa and the European Renaissance, the Platonic/Christian notion of man in the image of God is properly defined by the capacity of man to progressively discover the purpose and the lawfulness of the wonders of nature, to master those laws and apply them to the further transformation of nature and the further perfection of mankind, in keeping with that injunction of Genesis 1:28 for man to have dominion over nature, which Küng so despises, and Christs call for man to Be perfect, even as your Father which is in Heaven is perfect (Matt. 5:48). Küng attempts to solve the obvious contradiction between this Renaissance notion and his own thesis by distorting Nicolaus of Cusa himself. Küng turns the architect of the Renaissance and the founder of modern science into an anti-scientific Zen mystic!
Cusanus took Platos concept of the Idea as the perfect, infinite reality behind the ephemeral, limited objects of our senses, and united this with the Judeo-Christian concept of man in the image of God, owing to his creative intellect. He defined the source of scientific discovery, as mans capacity to hypothecate the infinite reality underlying the finite objects and events in the physical universe. Man was thus able to transcend the finite through the exercise of reason. Cusanus called this the contracted infinite, since it was less than the absolute infinite of God, but is contracted from that absolute infinite. This was to be the concept which guided Johannes Kepler in his hypothesis concerning the harmonies of the universe, as it was also the genesis of Leibnizs concept of the monad, and of Georg Cantors discovery of the mathematical transfinite in the Nineteenth century.
Surprisingly, then, Hans Küng writes that the metaphysics of Cusanus set a standard for intellectual creativity still valid today. How can Küng reconcile this embrace of Nicolaus of Cusa, the founder of modern science, with his call for man to maintain a critical distance from technological and scientific developments, let alone his more egregious New Age nonsense? Using the Delphic method commonly used by the Venetians against their enemies, Küng takes one aspect of Cusanuss thought, misrepresents it, ignores the rest, and then adopts this false construct as an ally of his own view.
Küng quotes Cusanus from On Learned Ignorance40:
From the standpoint of negative theology, there is nothing in God but infinitude. Accordingly, he is knowable neither in this world nor in the world to come, since all creatures, which cannot comprehend the infinite light, are darkness in comparison with him. Rather, he is known only to himself.
Küng praises the negative theology of Cusanus as essentially equivalent to the Buddhist emptiness, the Void, as an expression for the ineffability of God. Similarly, he refers to Cusanuss notion of the coincidence of opposites in God, implying that this concept reaffirms that God is unintelligible to the human intellect, accessible only through a mystical submission to emptiness (which, he says, is also its opposite, fullness). Here, Küng ends his representation of Cusanus thoughtthere is no mention of Cusanus extensive development of the meaning of the Trinity, in which Cusanus locates mans capacity to know God by rising above the level of sense perception, or logical reasoning, to the level of creative intellect.41 Instead, Küng wanders into what he calls a melancholy sidelong glance at the history of the Jesuits mission to Asia:
It is strange to think what might have happened if Christian theologians had not always buried their own tradition of negative theology beneath their prolix tomes, but had taken it more seriously. How many controversies over doctrines, dogmas, and definitions might have been spared over the centuries! How much more deepened understanding might have been applied to foreign religions just when new continents and peoples were beginning to be discovered! And how might the conversations with Japanese Buddhists have gone, if the first Jesuit missionaries had cited, not Scholastic proofs for the existence of God, but the penetrating analysis of the experience of God as detailed by Cusanus, whose writings they could have been familiar with?
(Apparently, according to Küng, Matteo Ricci should have oriented toward the Chan (Zen) monks, and not the Confucians!)
Even without reviewing the affirmative theology of Nicolaus of Cusa, it can easily be shown that Küngs use of the phrase coincidence of opposites, is the opposite of that intended by Cusanus. Far from meaning that God was unintelligible to man, Cusanus counterposed his method of coincidence of opposites to the linear, impotent logic of Aristotle. Aristotles deductive and inductive logic, based on mechanically putting together data from empirical sense perceptions according to a fixed set of axioms, was indeed incapable of even approaching the infinite truths of God (which Aristotle argued did not exist in any case). To Aristotle, for instance, the primary method of proof was the law of contradictions, whereby any concept which is not consistent with a fixed axiomatic structure is thereby proven false. Thus, there can be nothing new, no change, no revolutionary transformation of the axioms of knowledge. But Cusanus demonstrated that all scientific knowledge takes the form of the overturning of existing knowledge, through the hypothecating of a higher type, a higher set of axioms, which will subsume the seemingly contradictory events at the lower state of knowledge. The only bounding of this process of human self-perfection is the perfect knowledge of God, in whom all opposites coincide. It is precisely the intellect (which the Zen Buddhistsand Küngwish to extinguish), that is capable of receiving the Divine illumination of faith, and is thus led by this light to believe it can attain the truth.42 This is how man participates in the unfolding creation of the universe.
Cusanus even demonstrates that according to Aristotle (and, by inference, Hans Küng), not only is man impotent to discover anything fundamentally new, but even God is rendered impotent. In On Beryllus,43 Cusanus complains that Aristotle believed that the Composer-Intellect made everything out of the necessity of nature. God, however, argues Cusanus, is absolute and superexalted, since He is not a contracted origin such as nature, which acts out of necessity, but rather is the origin of nature itself, which is therefore supernatural and free, because He creates everything through His will. This, of course, is also the source of mans free will, which, as we shall see, Küng confuses with the anarchistic rejection of Universal Truth in favor of the unfettered passions of the individual.
Cusanus identifies the reason for Aristotles failure to comprehend the relationship of mankinds creative intellect and the Will of God: Aristotle lacked the notion of Christian love, or caritas (agape, charity), the Holy Spirit of the Trinity which connects God with his creation, and which is the Divine illumination that guides our intellect.
It is thus particularly revealing that Hans Küng denigrates the concept of caritas, while repeatedly and intensely defending eros and libertine sexuality. He complains that Christian charity doesnt sell: Christian caritas was often not very convincing because it was not very human. He disparages the later Christian theologians ... [who] not only distinguished between eros and caritas, but found them mutually exclusive, thus, complains Küng, lowering the status of eroticism and sexuality. The primary culprit in this prudery of the Church, says Küng, is St. Augustine:
Bourgeois Western Christianity was and is vulnerable to a kind of Stoic-Gnostic-Manichaean hostility toward the body, sex, and women. This antagonism was passed along to Western Christianity above all by the older Augustine (sexual pleasure allowed only for the purpose of procreation) and medieval and modern popes. ... This rigorous/prudish sexual morality ... repressed and suppressed all unself-conscious joy in the sensual, the corporeal, the sexual.
Nowhere does Küng demonstrate his conscious intent in regard to his campaign for sexual libertinism more than in his extended argument in defense of the perverse sex cults which dominate the most extreme forms of Tantric Buddhism, Hinduism, and Taoism. Küng refers particularly to the Tantric Buddhism practiced in Tibet called Shaktist Tantrism. While admitting that these practices are very far from Christianity, he argues for their acceptance and insists that we must learn from them. The Tantric cults generally revived the yoga practices of Hinduism, finding salvation not so much in concentration of the mind but in bodily exercises. Küng specifically builds a case for the sexual practices of these cults, linking this to the feminist movement in the West:
A Christian evaluation of this Eastern occult doctrine should not have its source in prejudice against the body and sex. ... The highly positive meaning of the female principle in Shaktist Tantrismwe see here the emergence, as in Marian piety, of a primal need for the female archetype [!]can make Christians aware how much the feminine has been repressed and suppressed in Christian teaching and ecclesiastical practice, how thoroughly Christianity has become a patriarchal religion. This will challenge Christians to re-read their own traditions, their rigid linguistic codes, their ground-in prejudices and practices. ... If Christians continue to use the name Father for God, then they must become conscious of the one-sidedness of such symbolic language. ... All of Shaktist Tantrism may not simply be written off as a sexual cult or even as sexual dissipation. In many cases, these are profound religious systems and practices, which affirm sexuality as a creative force of human life and attempt to incorporate sexual communication, as the deepest form of human communication, into religion. ... The linking of yoga and sexuality in (originally Hindu) Tantrism aims not at the mere satisfaction of temporary needs, but at the sublimation of sexuality: at salvation and union with the Absolute. Furthermore, we should not forget that these cults come from the socially disadvantaged classes and thus seek to give religious expression not just to lay piety generally, but to the often suppressed strata and dimensions of humanity. ... Hence we should not deny that authentic religion can be found in these cults that are so alien to Christianity.
Küngs support for perversions amongst disadvantaged classes is typical of the policies of Liberation Theology, whereby the rituals of a pseudo-church (an autochthonous church) are created (by Western sociologists, anthropologists, and Liberation Theologists) out of the primitive practices of a backward, oppressed population, in order to assure that they will remain backward, while also creating deep emotional control mechanisms through sex, drugs, etc. This has been seen over and over again in Ibero-America (e.g., the Sendero Luminoso in Peru, the Zapatistas in Mexico), where Küng and his associates have played a leading role in the creation of controlled armed terrorist insurgency movementsall under the cover of supporting indigenous movements. These movements are then used for drug trafficking and political destabilization against nations targeted by the Club of the Isles.44
Küngs War Against Christianity
Hans Küng is not interested merely in subverting Confucianism and the religions of China, of course; he is in the forefront of the effort to destroy Christianity, along with any religion which professes a belief in one God, one Truth. This is particularly clear in the dialogue Islam and Christianity, which appears in the same collection Christianity and the World Religions as his dialogue Buddhism and Christianity. Examining Küngs dialogue with Islam helps to place the New Enlightenment efforts to distort Confucianism and Christianity in a more universal context.
Küng identifies two primary differences between Islam and Christianity which he believes can and should be resolved. First, Islam rejects the Trinityalthough he concedes that the Koran doesnt discuss the actual Trinity, but takes objection only to the idea that the man Jesus of Nazareth can also be God. On the Christian side, says Küng, Christians refuse to acknowledge Mohammed as a prophet, or, worse, they condemn him for various heresies. Küngs proposed solution can be simply summarized as follows: we (Christians) will drop our belief in the Trinity, and acknowledge that Christ was just a man, although chosen by God as a prophet to deliver the Word. We (Christians) can then easily concur that Mohammed was similarly chosen as a prophet.
While clearly heretical from the standpoint of Christianity, Küngs offer to Islam is less a concession than a ploy to induce Muslims to join with him in rejecting that which does in fact unite Islam and Christianitythe belief in the existence of one true, universal creator God, self-subsisting and absolute. His intent is to create an apparent theological justification for radical environmentalist attacks on scientific progress, and support for the terrorist operations associated with Liberation Theology, by both Muslims and Christians.
Both Islam and Christianity, Küng says, believe that Gods word is intelligible to man, and has been historically rendered concrete in the world; Christians look to the teaching of Jesus in the Gospels, whereas Muslims consider the Koran to be the word of God. These are Küngs targets, insisting that man must not be subject to any such absolutes. He then asks rhetorically: What should a person follow as his guide? What should he base his life on? How is God to be understood? How do I recognize him? What is his will, and how do I carry it out? He answers that there is no law, only praxis: The will of God is carried out through service to human beings... . Serving our fellow men and women takes priority over complying with the law. As we saw in the case of the 1974 Louvain Conference, this decoupling of action from universal lawfulness is the prescription for Maoist revolutionary terror, all to the purpose of serving the people. Thus, says Küng, The Sharia [Islamic Law] exists for the sake of man, and not man for the sake of the Sharia. Man is therefore the measure of the law. And so might it not be the function of conscience [emphasis in the original] here and now to distinguish which parts of a religious system are just and unjust, what is essential or dispensable, constructive or destructive, good law or bad?
We thus arrive back at the Enlightenment, at Wang Yang-mings liang chih, the innate knowledge which requires no exercise of the intellect and reason, no investigation of the principle in things as demanded by Chu Hsi, to know the truth. Each and every individual is free to determine what is good for him, while the very existence of Truth, beyond what each individual believes the truth to be, is denied. And, although Küng goes to great lengths to appear to be making concessions to Islam, no Muslim(not even those who believe that the Sharia is not applicable in literal form to modern society)could ever accept Küngs advocacy of the unrestrained individual will against the teachings of the Koran. This is the same point identified by Pope John Paul II in the passage quoted earlier, as the crucial source of the crisis of civilization since the Enlightenment. In fact, the Pope was certainly addressing his remarks, at least in part, to the followers of Hans Küng. Küng is himself unrestrained in his attacks on John Paul II, whom, he says, is attempting to restore the medieval/Counter-Reformation/anti-modern paradigm to the Church (while applying a veneer of modernity), on the model of Catholic Poland, which has known neither the Reformation nor the Enlightenment.
The Trinity, Without Cusanus
How, then, does Küng justify calling himself a Christian? The answer is that he creates his own definition of what he chooses to call Christianity, which is an eclectic collection of various gnostic heresies.
It is important to note first that Küng makes absolutely no reference, in the entire section on Christianity, Islam, and the Trinity, to Nicolaus of Cusa. But, as we saw above, in the section on Buddhism in the same book, Küng calls Cusanus the standard for intellectual creativity still valid today. He therefore certainly knows that Cusanus not only wrote voluminously on the Trinity, but that his exposition on the meaning of the Trinity was the basis for his leadership of the Council of Florence in 1439 which united the Eastern and Western churches and launched the Renaissance. Küng must know also that Cusanus created and led a movement for peace based upon an ecumenical alliance of religions, with a primary focus on Islam, as described in his On the Peace of Faith, in which the Trinity again is the center of discussion.45 Beyond that, Küng must know that Cusanus wrote an extensive study and critique of the Koran, in which, although he is intensely polemical in defense of Christianity, he nonetheless praises and embraces the core truth of the Islamic belief in the One God.
Since Cusanus clearly dedicated much of his life to the questions being addressed by Küng, it is astonishing, to say the least, that Küng ignores what the man he considers to be the standard for intellectual creativity has to say on these issues. The following passage from Cusanus Prologue to an Examination of the Koran, which directly refutes the thesis of Küng presented just above (as well as the thesis of the pseudo-Confucian Wang Yang-ming discussed earlier) may explain his sudden memory lapse:
Because our intellectual spirit is not itself the Good that it desires, because that Good is not in itfor were the Good in the intellect, then it would be intellect, just as in our knowledge the known is our knowledgetherefore, our intellect does not know what that Good is. The intellectual spirit in its nature desires to comprehend that Good. For although it can be lacking to no thing which is, since to be is good, nevertheless, unless the intellect understands it, it is without it and can find no rest.46
Küng denies the Trinity by simply defining it to be something else altogethera collection of three distinct things, a threesome, rather than a triune Unity. He identifies these three distinct entities as: God; the man Jesus of Nazareth; and the Holy Spirit, which is Gods power at work in the world. Küng writes: In the New Testament, Jesus Christ is primarily viewed not as an eternal, intradivine hypostasis, but as a human, historical person concretely related to God. Gone is the notion of the two natures of Christ, both God and man, such that any man, through the imitation of Christ, can rise above the senses and logical ratiocination to the level of the intellect, and thus pursue the Good, as the intellect desires.
To retain his claim to being a Christian, Küng and his co-thinkers re-interpret the history of Christianity: For Jesus himself, Küng writes, the central problem was this: In the face of the coming Kingdom of God, how to overcome legalism by fulfilling Gods will in love? For the Christian Church, however, the central issue shifted over the course of time, to the person of Jesus and his relation to God. Neither Christ himself nor the Gospels, he claims, considered Christ as the begotten Son of God, the Divinity, the second person of the Trinitythis was introduced only by the Greeks, who had absorbed the influence of Plato and imposed his thought onto the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. What the New Testament unquestionably has in mind is not a relation of parentage [between God and Jesus], but an appointment, in the Old Testament sense, conferring legal status and power. Not a physical divine sonship ... but Gods choosing Jesus and granting him full authority. ... With the spread of Christianity to the world of Hellenistic thought, there was an increasing tendency to put Jesus, as the Son of God, on the same level of being as the Father. This same Platonic influence, says Küng, introduced the notion of the immortality of the soul, which is neither an Islamic nor a specifically Jewish or Christian idea. Both the divine Jesus and the immortality of the soul supposedly derive from what Küng describes as the dualism of Plato and the Greeks, referring to Platos belief that the intellect is superior to feeling and sense perception. Küng not only condemns this attempt to distinguish between man and the animals, but he insists that the man Jesus was a man of feeling and praxis, not of intellect. The emergence in Christianity of the taste for philosophy and aesthetics, for polished language and harmonious articulation of doctrine, is Greek, writes Küng. Greek, too, is the intellectualization of belief through dogmatizing, high-flown speculation, and sterile, abstract mysticism.
Another spokesman for the New Enlightenment, Leonard Swidler, editor of the Journal of Ecumenical Studies and Professor of Catholic Thought and Interreligious Dialogue at Temple University, concurs with Küng that the Greeks imposed abstract rational thinking onto the Church, whereas the real Jesus was more concerned with praxis, with what to do, rather than what to think, with ethics rather than doctrine. Swindler endorses a widespread racist Venetian slander against Judaism, by denying the intellectural tradition of the followers of Moses, and portraying Jesus the Jew as an existential pragmatist untainted by the later rationalism of the Greeks. In this, says Swidler, Jesus was like the Taoists: The Semitic emphasis (of Jesus) corresponds to the Asians concern with the Way, which is so deep that it even provided a name for the whole Asian religion and way of thinking and living: Taoism.47
The real Christians, according to Küng and his associates, were those who were cut off from Greek influence, especially when the Roman Empire sacked Jerusalem in the Second century A.C.E. . They moved east into Syria, Persia, and Arabia, and, says Küng, never diluted their pure version of Christianity with the Trinity, the divinity of Christ, or any of the Greek taste for philsophy and aesthetics.
Küng is here attempting to revive various heresies from the era of the early Church, just as the leaders of the Enlightenment revived old heresies as weapons against the Renaissance. Cut off from the influence of Greek philosophy, these Central Asian sects, praised by Küng, developed forms of gnostic Christiantyincluding Manichaeanism and Nestorianismthat would later be easily manipulated by the Venetians, in their fostering the Mongol hordes of Genghis Khan which destroyed China, and much of the Christian and Islamic world as well.
It is thus appropriate to conclude by quoting Hans Küng from his dialogue with Taoism, in Christianity and Chinese Religions, in which he openly adopts the gnostic (Taoist) view of a dual nature to God, one side good, one side evil. Küng specifically joins with Voltaire in ridiculing Leibniz for his contention that God has created the best of all possible worlds. Küng accuses God of responsibility for all the horrors of the world:
Does it not seem more than justified to go beyond complaint to accusation, an accusation that cries out to Heaven ... which is responsible for order and harmony in this world?
He adopts the yin/yang of Taoism to impute an evil side to God:
Is there perhaps a tension of polarity in God himself, just as in Chinese thought there is a polarity that permeates everything?
As we head today into the Third millennium, enmeshed in economic and political crisis, we must hope that mankind can put aside this superstitionthat evil must be accepted as a Divine prinicipleso that we can begin the ecumenical process of economic development of our entire planet and beyonda process which is wholly good in the eyes of God and man.
32. Dr. Sun Yat-sen (1867-1925), the father of the Chinese Republic established in 1911, advocated with his Three Principles of the People an alliance between the republican tradition in the West associated with Alexander Hamilton and Abraham Lincoln, and the Chinese Confucian tradition. His polemics against the British imperial policies and the cult of free trade, especially in his book The Problem of China, are perhaps the most perceptive and devastating exposure of British methods and ideology in the Twentieth century before LaRouche. See Michael Billington, The British Role in the Creation of Maoism, Executive Intelligence Review, Vol. 19, No. 36, Sept. 11, 1992.
33. Joseph Needham, a British biologist turned China scholar, devoted his life to compiling a massive hoax, called Science and Civilization in China, in which he portrayed the mysticism and alchemy of the ancient Chinese as the source of their rich scientific traditon, while dismissing Confucianism as an authoritarian hindrance to progress. A Communist at Cambridge in the 1930s, he was deployed to establish relations with Mao Zedong, and became an ardent supporter of Mao and a primary British intelligence channel to China until his death in March of this year. See Michael Billington, Obituary: The Taoist Hell of Joseph Needham, 1900-1995, Executive Intelligence Review, Vol. 22, No. 17, April 21, 1995.
34. Martin Heidegger, whose philosophy has infected nearly every strain of modern philosophy, left and right, religious and secular, was not only a Nazi Party member, but actively rallied German students and intellectuals behind the Hitler movement. His supporters, including those within the Church, go to hysterical extremes to portray his philosophy as somehow divorced from his Nazi beliefs. See Helga Zepp-LaRouche, The Case of Martin Heidegger, Fidelio, Vol. IV, No. 1, Spring 1995.
35. Quoted from Heideggers On the Way to Language.
36. Para-psychologist C.G. Jung practiced Taoist divination, using the ancient Chinese I Ching (The Book of Changes). He wrote the introduction to a translation of the I Ching by occultist Richard Wilhelm, and reported proof from his own scientific experiments that the method works. See Michael Billington, The Taoist Perversion of Twentieth-Century Science, Fidelio, Vol. III, No. 3, Fall 1994.
37. Alvin Tofflers Third Wave, the latest faddish euphemism for the destruction of industrial society, functions as the Bible for the zombies who goose-step to Newt Gingrichs Conservative Revolution. See Phil Gramms Conservative Revolution in America, Executive Intelligence Review, Vol. 22, No. 8, Feb. 17, 1995, Special Report, pp. 20-73.
38. Hans Küng, Chirstianity and the World Religions (New York: Doubleday, 1985).
39. See Anglo-Americans Jacobin in Thailand: A Profile of Sulak Sivaraksa, Executive Intelligence Review, Vol. 19, No. 24, June 12, 1992.
40. For a treatment of this work by Cusanus, see William F. Wertz, Jr., The Method of Learned Ignorance, Fidelio, Vol. IV, No. 1, Spring 1995.
41. See Toward a New Council of Florence: On the Peace of Faith and Other Works by Nicolaus of Cusa, ed. and trans. by William F. Wertz, Jr. (Washington, D.C.: Schiller Institute, 1993).
42. Nicolaus of Cusa, On the Gift of the Father of Lights, in William F. Wertz, Jr., Toward a New Council of Florence, ibid.
43. Nicolaus of Cusa, On Beryllus, in ibid.
44. See Terrorist International at Work: The Chiapas Model, Executive Intelligence Review, Vol. 22, No. 14, March 31, 1995, Special Report, pp. 10-63.
45. William F. Wertz, Jr., Toward a New Council of Florence, op. cit.
47. Leonard Swidler, What Christianity Can Offer AsiaEspecially China in the Third Millennium, Ching Feng, Vol. 37, No. 3 (Hong Kong).
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