I just finished reading Fr. Seraphim Rose’s Orthodoxy and the Religion of the Future and it got me thinking about my experience so far at university.
In the Fall of 2020, I took a class titled “HASS-1666: Religion in a Global World” to fulfill a “liberal arts” requirement. I should have looked harder at the course number.
I figured we would spend the majority of our time on Islam, Judaism, and Christianity, but instead we focused on West African, Aboriginal, and other obscure shamanist and pagan religions. We spent the semester discussing gender swapping rituals, divination through ritualistic sacrifices, liminal spaces (through which we analyzed what you do at the toilet as a “religious experience”), speaking in tongues, and the possession of infants by suicidal spirits. Although there was a general understanding that these kinds of practices are odd, the professor heavily implied that the West needed to appreciate them as valid and incorporate them into a syncretic global religion (i.e., create a religion suitable for and palatable to a global world or in the words of the class: “a global village”).
Our only analysis of Christianity was through a presentation of it as a novel branch of the “universal Abrahamic faith” that grew solely by “forced conversion” and “imperial expansion.” Moreover, we were told that Christianity is a “colonial, individualistic, and materialistic” religion which “perpetuates an oppressor class.” The sole example given of Christian doctrine in practice was Protestant prosperity gospel (Orthodoxy and Catholicism were not acknowledged) accompanied by a quotation from Benjamin Franklin.
A member of the class also literally practiced witchcraft. My classmate’s semester presentation—which focused on how witchcraft is compatible with The Current Thing™—culminated in a Wiccan ritual with the invoking of several spirits.
This Spring, looking for a normal liberal arts course (i.e., one that doesn’t worship the Antichrist), I opted to take an introductory economics class. The required reading for the course was a book on “climate economics” the introduction of which celebrates Eve’s eating of the forbidden fruit, saying that Eve was given a “bad shake,” and that her punishment shows the sexism of Christianity. The author concludes that Christianity is incompatible with the Earth (funny parallel to John 15:18) and implies it should be wiped out in favor of a global syncretism of “Native” religions.
What’s my point?
You can see clearly in the examples above the rampant ecumenism and push for a syncretic global religion identified half a century ago by Fr. Seraphim Rose. They are totally entrenched in academia and will be forced on you.
I don’t share my experiences to push you away from studying the liberal arts or STEM, but to suggest that modern universities have no appreciation of them. As my friend Tom wrote a while back, “There is nothing inherently “evil” about a traditional liberal arts education. In fact, what poses as a well rounded “education” today pales in comparison to the wisdom taught in ancient times […] The majority of students at big universities would find better purpose in their abilities by pursuing a vocational craft rather than fall for the debt traps of academia because self studying and a sharp mind are free.” In a phrase: spiritual death isn’t worth $200,000.
Obviously don’t take this to mean that you shouldn’t go to college, but that you have a responsibility to your family to deeply consider the value of instruction and ask yourself if your major is employable (for 50% of people this isn’t the case). Be conscious of the ever more blatant subversion of Christianity and of Western tradition. Guard yourself against the “priests” of the new global religion.