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Hatred

Please raise your hands if you think you don’t hate.

No hands? Thought so…

In fact, I’d say hate is possibly as powerful a feeling as love, and as universally spread.

I must have dealt with this in the past, but I’d like today to point out to the fact that one of the clearest signs of the decay of our societies is the tendency to portrait hate as something bad and criminal in itself – not only in the figurative sense, but in the literal one: as in hate crime, beautifully  epitomising the conception of freedom espoused by the latest crop of il-liberal nazis.

It is as if hating was something so very bad in itself. Nowadays, one just doesn’t hate. One smiles nicely, and politely airs his teeth with some platitude about Niceness, Tolerance & Co. Tolerance which, mind, does not include the tolerance for “hate”, or pretty much everyone who doesn’t share the same “tolerant” attitude.

Was this always the case, one might wonder? Certainly not. If you love, you hate and if you don’t hate strongly, I’d rather say you don’t love much. I love the Church, therefore I hate her enemies. I love my Fatherland, therefore I hate her enemies, and so forth. The indistinct, uncritical understanding given to everyone only shows one does not stand up for anything. This is, I am afraid, a typical XXI Century disease, a thinly veiled absence of not only real values, but the energy and gut of fighting for what little values one has.

Not so in the past. The generations before us (who were, let us not forget, Christian in a much surer way than we are now) were perfectly able to understand between the hate for the enemy because of his quality as an enemy, and the hate of a person because one simply hates the person. The first one (I will kill you, because you are at war with my country; I will eradicate your lot, because you are heretics; I will fight against you, because you go against what is holy) was called odium abominationis, meaning that the abomination is the primary target, and the person is targeted merely as the vector of the abomination. The second, odium inimicitiae, sees the person as a target in itself, and desires his suffering – or dying – in itself.

What many people do not understand anymore is that whilst the second kind of hate is undoubtedly a sin, the first isn’t.

To put it with the words of the Catholic Encyclopedia (emphasis mine),

The first-named species of hatred, in so far as it implies the reprobation of what is actually evil, is not a sin and may even represent a virtuous temper of soul. In other words, not only may I, but I even ought to, hate what is contrary to the moral law.

How true, and how politically incorrect. I would like to have a pound for every time I’ve heard people say I am wrong in trying to protect some moral values, because others do not share them. So what? “Others” is not my middle name and if others are morally wrong, they must change their minds.

Besides, it is not that I wake up in the morning and make my own theology and moral values. They do.

Do you want more? The Christians of past ages, who did not drown in an ocean of goodism, are ready to oblige:

Furthermore one may without sin go so far in the detestation of wrongdoing as to wish that which for its perpetrator is a very well-defined evil, yet under another aspect is a much more signal good. For instance, it would be lawful to pray for the death of a perniciously active heresiarch with a view to putting a stop to his ravages among the Christian people.

This very Catholic thinking – such, that our grandmothers would not have head the least scandal in hearing someone wishing, say, Stalin a sudden death or using some other colourful Italian expression, with which I will not challenge your polite sensibilities today – is not practised anymore nowadays, when such a wish – if bravely expressed – would be countered by a dozen of sanctimonious, knife-lipped old ladies (some of them with Adam’s apple) telling you how much we must pray for our enemies, & Co.

The fact is, in today’s emasculated world any kind of hostility whatsoever is a no-no, and life seen as a permanent afternoon tea where no one will ever say an unkind word to the vicar, much less steal the silver tray. These Pollyannas (males and females alike) do not admit the existence of hate because they do not know the fire of love, and do not care for the heat of battle.

Yes, ma’am. We must pray for the conversion of this bloodthirty unChristian dictator, or of that persecutor of Christians.

But a brain aneurysm – or a genital cancer, come to that – will do just fine.

Mundabor

Hatred and the misconception of “charity”

Be virtuous. Hate them.

Those reading conservative Catholic blogs are surely already fed up with the sugary concept of “chariteeee” promoted by liberals who consider orthodox Christians people full of hatred. Let me explain why they are both right.

First of all, some definitions: the Catholic Encyclopedia defines hatred as

a vehement aversion entertained by one person for another, or for something more or less identified with that other.

This is rather easy. It becomes more interesting when you read that hatred comes in two forms:

One (odium abominationis, or loathing) is that in which the intense dislike is concentrated primarily on the qualities or attributes of a person, and only secondarily, and as it were derivatively, upon the person himself.

The second sort (odium inimicitiae, or hostility) aims directly at the person, indulges a propensity to see what is evil and unlovable in him, feels a fierce satisfaction at anything tending to his discredit, and is keenly desirous that his lot may be an unmixedly hard one, either in general or in this or that specified way.

Now this is already more intriguing as one can clearly see, in the first form, the hatred coming from the scandal, the blasphemy, the abomination, the sheer godlessness of a person. The Latin definition of the first hatred, “hatred of the abomination”, actually says it all.

Even more interesting it becomes when we read that:

The first-named species of hatred, in so far as it implies the reprobation of what is actually evil, is not a sin and may even represent a virtuous temper of soul. In other words, not only may I, but I even ought to, hate what is contrary to the moral law.

It is clear here that, provided one does not take the “hate of the abomination” as an excuse to hate the person, this kind of hatred is not only not a sin, but is virtuous. You are supposed to hate the person having particularly odious traits inasmuch as he has them. You hate so-and-so because he is a blasphemer and in so doing you are even being good.

This reinforces me in a suspicion that I always had: that those unable to feel hatred for what is seriously wrong either do not have any real feeling for what is wrong or want to be free to commit it without being, as they love to say, “judged”. Conversely, people like Mother Teresa and Padre Pio – extremely pious by any standard – were noted for their very keen hatred of abominations.

But it gets even more interesting.

One may without sin go so far in the detestation of wrongdoing as to wish that which for its perpetrator is a very well-defined evil, yet under another aspect is a much more signal good. For instance, it would be lawful to pray for the death of a perniciously active heresiarch with a view to putting a stop to his ravages among the Christian people.

This doesn’t need any commentary. We all have such people in mind.

We must hate heresy; we must hate willed and celebrated scandal; we must hate the undermining of Catholic values masked as Catholicism. It is not sinful if we do, actually the contrary is true. It is evil if we let it happen because we want to feel “tolerant” (that is: never uncomfortable and/or with all options open) and call our cowardice and love of a quiet living “chariteeeeee”.

In better times – when Doctrine was properly taught – people knew about the ways to be accessory to another person’s sin. “Consent ” and “silence” are two of them. This should give all those who are, say, in favour of abortion but feel fine because they haven’t aborted themselves, or are in favour of euthanasia but say they wouldn’t make use of it themselves, a lot to think about.

Mundabor

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