Confession-The 1st Step in Mental Enslavement
12-31-2009, 07:51 AM (This post was last modified: 12-31-2009 07:54 AM by jack.)
Confession-The 1st Step in Mental Enslavement
Crime And Immorality In The Catholic Church
Father Emmett McLoughlin - Published in 1962, L. Stuart (New York)
Catholic Church, Doctrinal and controversial works, & Catholic criminals.
Quote:To all sincere Roman Catholic priests, who in the emotional self-immolation of their lives into the priesthood, have become as truly needless human sacrifices as the victims of Baal, Moloch, or Tetzeatlipoca-that God may give them the light to find the truth, and that truth itself may set them free.
excerts from chapter 14 -
Confession-The First Step in Mental Enslavement
In spite of her protestations that she is the only divinely founded Church, that she is holy, that she can and does produce holiness in her members, the Roman Catholic Church has failed in the past to hold aloft the banner of morality. And in our time she continues to harbor more criminals and sinners than other churches, more even than among people who renounce all religion.
Some of the reasons for this remarkable phenomenon have been outlined-venial sins, penal laws and the Churches unnatural and futile handling of sex.
Another significant explanation for much of Roman Catholic lawlessness lies in the structure of Catholicism. Its code of behavior is built upon ritual and superstition rather than upon true religion, reasoned ethics, self-education and self-control. -
The most important ritual for the control and rehabilitation of the behavior of Roman Catholics is the ceremony of Confession, also called the Sacrament of Penance. It is the epitome of superstition in the Church's centuries-old bag of magic tricks and amulets.
For the ritual of confession is a superstition, a word that Webster defines as follows:
An irrational abject attitude of mind toward the supernatural, nature or God proceeding from ignorance, unreasoning fear of the unknown or mysterious, morbid scrupulosity, a belief in magic or chance or the like, misdirected or unenlightened religion or interpretation of nature; . . . any belief, conception, act or practice resulting from such a state of mind ... a fixed irrational idea ... a notion maintained in spite of evidence to the contrary.
It is unfortunate for devout Catholics that this definition applies so exactly to what all of us were taught to be a sacrament established by Christ Himself for the complete cleansing of souls fouled by sin and their restoration to a "state of grace."
The familiarity of going to confession at least once a month did not lessen my fear of it. The priest was supposed to question me regarding sins I might have omitted and then admonish me to try never to do such things again. The most frequent questions were, "Did you do anything nasty or have any bad thoughts or actions since your last confession?" and "Have you missed Mass on Sunday?"
I had been raised in a strict Catholic home, so these questions of the priest were very confusing. I knew what lying and stealing were, but the priest never asked about them. Furthermore, my lying was generally to my mother and my stealing concerned food, particularly fruit from neighbors' trees, although our backyard trees bore fruit equally good. But since such sins were merely venial, I did not have to confess them.
But "nastiness" and "adultery" and "sex' were very mysterious. I knew that they were wrong, but I didn't know what they were. For the first three or four years that priests in the confessional asked me if I had had bad thoughts or done "nasty" things, I had no concept whatever of the functions of sex and only the vaguest notions of the physical differences between men and women. I knew absolutely nothing of the origin of human babies. I thought that adultery was looking at my own body, wanting to see the body of a little girl, or urinating where I should not. Through years of association with Catholics and years of hearing confessions, I learned that my confused ignorance was shared by many others.
In lecturing across the country I have found non-Catholics extremely interested in the ceremony of confession. They want to know if Catholics really tell all, if Catholics really believe that a priest can forgive sins, and if the priest sincerely believes that he has the power to forgive them.
It rarely occurs to them, however, nor to most Catholics, that this ceremony is not merely a soul-washing ritual but is an adjunct of the parochial school system. It is so much a part of that system that the confessional might well be called another classroom-the private classroom for individual instruction.
The Catholic priests in their function of hearing confessions might be called the police force of the hierarchy. They are watching at the "grass roots" over the morals of the faithful. The weakness of the Catholic position regarding stealing, lying and regard for civil law rests not only in theological classrooms. A "celibate" priest, when hearing confessions, does not think them nearly as important nor as interesting as masturbation, fornication or adultery.
Equally important in the plan of Roman Catholic control of men's intimate personal lives is the opportunity the confessional gives of having the priest ask, "Have you missed Mass on Sunday?" If so, the priest instills the concept that missing Mass even once is a mortal sin, as punishable by hellfire as adultery or murder. There are unknown thousands, perhaps millions of Catholics who, because of this constant nagging in the confessional while they were younger, will attend Mass regularly, even though they are routinely drunk, enjoying a sexual affair or practicing birth control regularly. The attendance at Mass with as generous a donation as they can afford is their expiation for the sins of their nature.
Once they are at Mass, however, the indoctrination machine can work on them. They hear the sermons. They see the multitudinous Catholic pamphlets. They buy the local diocesan weekly journal and perhaps that most biased, divisive and anti-Protestant paper, Our Sunday Visitor. Among the young and their elders, through the help of the confessional, Roman Catholic "education" goes on.
Those who go to confession are usually sincere (albeit sometimes frightened) Catholics who want their sins forgiven and the average priest thinks he has the formula for doing so.
The first indictment of the confessional is that it is a man-made fraud and superstition.
The following historical details are taken principally from the writings of Henry Charles Lea, particularly from the very heavily documented three-volume work, A History of Auricular Confession and Indulgences in the Latin Church.
The authors Lea quotes are familiar to every priest-Origen, Clement of Alexandria, St. Augustine , St. Ambrose, St. Cyprian, St. Barnabas, St. Polycarp, Dionysius of Corinth, St. John Chrysostom, Tertullian, Venerable Bede, St. Thomas Aquinas, Duns Scotus, Peter Lombard, St. Alphonsus, Liguori, Alexander Hales, to name only a few; the Didache and a host of popes and regional and ecumenical councils. As I have mentioned earlier, the 17,000 volumes of Lea's source material are in the University of Pennsylvania library.
Private confession to a priest and the claim of the priestly power to forgive sin were not required in the early Church. Public confession as in the "Confiteor" of the Mass or as conducted in many Protestant churches was usual.
Among the primitive Christians the practice of acknowledging sins was regarded as a wholesome exercise, contributory to their pardon and leading to self-restraint. The term exomologesis, by which confession is designated in the New Testament, came to signify in time the whole act of confession to God, with prostration and humiliation, whereby repentance was excited through which his wrath might be appeased.
We have already seen that Origen ridiculed the idea that the power of the keys had been transmitted from St. Peter, and we have further evidence that this private consultation with a physician of the soul had in it nothing capable of remitting sin or of obtaining absolution, but that it was merely a wholesome practice recommended by preachers and that the only confession as yet recognized by the Church was in public before the congregation.'
Throughout the first thousand years the custom gradually developed of voluntary private confession to priests. However, the purpose was for personal advice and consolation, not a requirement of forgiveness. Even in monasteries, private confession was not enforced.
Auricular personal private confession became a law of the Church by the Lateran council in 1216.' The council of Trent declared it a dogma of the Church in 1551:
If anyone says that in the Catholic Church penance is not truly and properly a sacrament instituted by Christ the Lord for reconciling the faithful of God as often as they fall into sin after baptism, let him be anathema."
This evolution of confession as a sacrament demonstrates the speciousness of the claim that the dogmas of the Church do not change or that its popes and councils are infallible.
Another interesting historical point is the backward reasoning by the theologians about confession. They wanted the doctrine; therefore it had to be true. And it fell upon the Angelic Doctor, St. Thomas Aquinas, the of all time in the Roman Catholic Church, greatest thinker to develop a theory to justify the confessional.
Apparently Aquinas was the first who boldly declared confession to be of divine law; as he has no gospel text to quote he argues that it cannot be of human law because it is a matter of faith; faith and the sacraments are beyond human reason and therefore they must be of divine law, which is virtually to assume that, as we cannot understand it, it must be of divine command though no such divine command is recorded. The authority, if not the reasoning, of Aquinas gave a standing in the schools to this view and we find it accepted by many succeeding writers. The Scotists reached the same conclusion by a somewhat different line of argument: the Church, they said, would not have imposed so heavy a burden on her children except by divine command and that as there is no trace of any canon prescribing it, prior to the Lateran council of 1216, it could not have been a mere human precept. Chancellor Gerson makes no pretence that it is of divine origin save that the Decalogue commands us to honor our parents and as Mother Church has commanded it we must honor her by obedience.'
Lea details, with continuous documentation, the confusion that prevailed throughout the centuries as this enslavement of the human mind evolved.
As might readily be expected, an important element in the development of confession as a universal practice was-money!
Medieval Church authorities claimed that fees could not be charged by priests for hearing confessions but voluntary offerings could be accepted. This is identical with the present practice regarding Mass "stipends." The Mass is not charged for, but if the voluntary offering is not forthcoming, the Mass is not recited and the soul simply keeps on burning in purgatory.
Historically, it can be seen, the foundation upon which a great part of Roman Catholic morality is built is one of weakness. Sociologically, an aspect of this problem that demands investigation is that, with a large segment of the faithful, the ritual of confession makes sin, not more difficult, but much more easy.
If the authors of the False Decretals, Pope Innocent III in the Lateran council and the bishops in the council of Trent, invented and made a sacrament out of confession for the purpose of deterring the faithful from sin, their scheme certainly backfired
Catholics become quite ludicrous in their condescending condemnations of futile superstitious rites in other and especially ancient primitive religions that are used in seeking the forgiveness of sins. They condemn the ancient Jewish ritual of the religious leader calling the people's sins down on the head of a goat and then driving him out in the desert to die. They sneer at the Moslems who atone for their waywardness by their pilgrimage to Mecca.
They ridicule the Hindus who in repeated holy years again and again wash themselves in the Ganges to be cleansed of their crimes and sins.
But Roman Catholics are just as superstitious and do the identical thing.
Catholic children and adults are for many years taught that the mere absolution of a priest forgives crime or sin, and in time they actually believe it. This method of mental indoctrination is the forerunner of Hitler's "big lie" and the Communist slogan of "the people's democracy" that hides a dictatorial regime.
The secrecy, the darkness and the anonymity of the confessional and the repetition of the ceremony over-come the shame and make repetition of the crime easier.
As long as they are healthy and reasonably assured of living till they can confess, many Catholics can and do sin with impunity.
Hell has lost its fury and death has lost its sting.
&Alice laughed, &There's no use trying,& she said: &one can't believe impossible things.& &I daresay you haven't had much practice,& said the Queen. &When I was your age I always did it for half-an-hour a day. Why, I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.&
- Lewis Carroll
&Things are seldom as they seem ... Skim milk masquerades as cream.&
- Gilbert and Sullivan (Pinafore)
At NASA, it really is rocket science, and the decision makers really are rocket scientists.
But a body of research that is getting more and more attention points to the ways that smart people working collectively can be dumber than the sum of their parts. .. Irwin Janis? &Groupthink:& is a mode of thinking that people engage in when they are deeply involved in a cohesive in-group, when the members' striving for unanimity override realistic appraisals ? It is the triumph of concurrence over good sense, and authority over expertise.&
-John Schwartz & Matthew L. Wade
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