How the Woke monster originated
When I first read Nietzsche when I was seventeen, I was very confused. At the time I wanted to rebel against my father’s traumatic Catholicism the way normies did and still do: through modern freethinker thought. I didn’t understand why Nietzsche fulminated against believers and non-believers alike. As a teenager, I never imagined that even the most militant atheists were still, axiologically, Christian.
I didn’t start to understand Nietzsche until, alarmed by the Islamisation of Europe, I read the aggregations of a Swede that I would eventually collect in the entry ‘The red giant’ (to honour Nietzsche, since 2021 this article has been available in German). The following quotes from Holland’s Dominion are taken from the chapter ‘Charity: AD 362’:
The shock of this cut Flavius Claudius Julianus [Emperor Julian] to the quick. The nephew of Constantine, he had been raised a Christian, with eunuchs set over him to keep him constant in his faith. As a young man, though, he had repudiated Christianity—and then, after becoming emperor in 361, had committed himself to claiming back from it those who had ‘abandoned the ever-living gods for the corpse of the Jew’. A brilliant scholar, a dashing general, Julian was also a man as devout in his beliefs as any of those he dismissively termed ‘Galileans’. Cybele was a particular object of his devotions. It was she, he believed, who had rescued him from the darkness of his childhood beliefs. Unsurprisingly, then, heading eastwards to prepare for war with Persia, he had paused in his journey to make a diversion to Pessinus. What he found there appalled him. Even after he had made sacrifice, and honoured those who had stayed constant in their worship of the city’s gods, he could not help but dwell in mingled anger and despondency on the neglect shown Cybele. Clearly, the people of Pessinus were unworthy of her patronage. Leaving the Galatians behind, he did as Paul had done three centuries before: he wrote them a letter.
‘My orders are that a fifth be given to the poor who serve the priests, and that the remainder be distributed to travellers and to beggars.’ Julian, in committing himself to this programme of welfare, took for granted that Cybele would approve. Caring for the weak and unfortunate, so the emperor insisted, had always been a prime concern of the gods. [pages 137-138]
One of the problems with us apostates from the Christian faith is that we fail to realise that this mania for helping the dispossessed is also Christian, even in non-Christian contexts. On this site, I have generally spoken well of Emperor Julian, but like all apostates, he probably never realised that, axiologically, he was still a Christian…
The heroes of the Iliad, favourites of the gods, golden and predatory, had scorned the weak and downtrodden. So too, for all the honour that Julian paid them, had philosophers. The starving deserved no sympathy… The young emperor, sincere though he was in his hatred of ‘Galilean’ teachings, and in regretting their impact upon all that he held most dear, was blind to the irony of his plan for combating them: that it was itself irredeemably Christian. ‘How apparent to everyone it is, and how shameful, that our own people lack support from us, when no Jew ever has to beg, and the impious Galileans support not only their own poor, but ours as well.’ [page 139]
The reversal of Greco-Roman values was already taking place at the time of the reign of the house of Constantine, i.e. the descendants or relatives of the first Christian emperor.
The wealthy, men who in previous generations might have boosted their status by endowing their cities with theatres, or temples, or bath-houses, had begun to find in the Church a new vent for their ambitions. This was why Julian, in a quixotic attempt to endow the worship of the ancient gods with a similar appeal, had installed a high priest over Galatia and urged his subordinates to practise poor relief. Christians did not merely inspire in Julian a profound contempt; they filled him with envy as well. [page 140]
There was no human existence so wretched, none so despised or vulnerable, that it did not bear witness to the image of God. Divine love for the outcast and derelict demanded that mortals love them too… ‘The bread in your board belongs to the hungry; the cloak in your wardrobe to the naked; the shoes you let rot to the barefoot; the money in your vaults to the destitute.’ The days when a wealthy man had only to sponsor a self-aggrandising piece of architecture to be hailed a public benefactor were well and truly gone. [pages 140-141]
In the following pages, Holland informs us that the quixotic Emperor Julian perished fighting the Persians, and gives us further evidence of how values were reversed:
And if so, then Martin—judged by the venerable standards of the aristocracy in Gaul—represented a new and disconcerting breed of hero: a Christian one. Such was the very essence of his magnetism. He was admired by his followers not despite but because of his rejection of worldly norms. Rather than accept a donative from Julian, he had publicly demanded release from the army altogether. ‘Until now it is you I have served; from this moment on I am a servant of Christ.’ Whether indeed Martin had truly said this, his followers found it easy to believe that he had… By choosing to live as a beggar, he had won a fame greater than that of any other Christian in Gaul… [pages 146-147]
No longer was Greco-Roman statuary, which so beautifully displayed the superb Aryan beauty, the benchmark for honouring the Aryan Gods. Now that the god of the Jews was in charge, it was necessary to admire their antithesis:
The first monk in Gaul ever to become a bishop, he was a figure of rare authority: elevated to the heights precisely because he had not wanted to be. Here, for anyone bred to the snobbery that had always been a characteristic of Roman society, was shock enough. Yet it was not only the spectacle of a smelly and shabbily dressed former soldier presiding as the most powerful man in Tours that had provoked a sense of a world turned upside down, of the last becoming first… As a soldier, though, he did have his heavy military cloak; and so, taking out his sword, he cut it in two, and gave one half to the beggar. No other story about Martin would be more cherished; no other story more repeated. This was hardly surprising. The echo was of a parable told by Jesus himself. The setting, as recorded in Luke’s gospel… [pages 147-149]
This image in a museum in Bamberg, Germany, which also appears in full colour in Holland’s book, shows Christ watching Martin sharing his cloak with a beggar. Holland then takes us to the year 394 to discuss the conduct of a billionaire, Meropius Pontius Paulinus:
Paulinus would present himself as a visual reproach to their extravagance. Pale from his sparse diet of beans, and with his hair roughly cropped like a slave’s, his appearance was calculated to shock. His body odour too. In an age when there existed no surer marker of wealth than to be freshly bathed and scented, Paulinus hailed the stench of the unwashed as ‘the smell of Christ’. [page 151]
As Hitler saw, Christianity was a religion that introduced spiritual terror into the Aryan soul. In the following paragraphs Holland explains the causes of such behaviour in a Roman who would once have used his wealth to honour Aryan beauty:
…he [Paulinus] far preferred another passage from the gospels. The story had been told by Jesus of a rich man, Dives, who refused to feed a beggar at his gates named Lazarus. The two men died. Dives found himself in fire, while Lazarus stood far above him, by Abraham’s side… Such was the fate that haunted Paulinus—and that he was resolved at all costs to avoid. [page 153]
In the final pages of the chapter, Holland informs us how the church reacted, thanks to the rationalisations of its African theologian, St Augustine, to reconcile the church’s love of riches with these Gospel passages. Yet Holland informs us that Clovis, the founder of the Merovingian dynasty, used to pray to St Martin: something which shows that even the most powerful warlord was already bowing down to a so-called saint.