The musings and meandering thoughts of a crotchety old man as he observes life in the world and in a small, rural town in South East Nebraska. My Pledge-Nulla dies sine linea-Not a day with out a line.
28 February 2022
Lockdown With the Devil - Chapter Seven
TakingThe Screwtape Lettersas a model, Mr Hall envisions the demonic attack on the family during the COVID-19 lockdowns.
Why did you not tell me that the daughter had experienced her own little conversion of sorts? Did you think you could hide it from me, or are you just incompetent? I will give you the benefit of the doubt (against my better judgement) and chalk it up to inexperience. Every single piece of information that is potentially relevant to us must be shared. Ultimately you can hide nothing from me, and no amount of negligence or incompetence will be tolerated. You have to come to terms with the fact that you are nothing more than a beast of burden at my disposal, and if you prove defective I will deal with you in whatever way corrects the problem. I can train another mule just as easy, and you can be put down all the same.
Regarding the girl, she is a young thing, just ten years old, and has not at this point in her life committed any mortal sin. Since she has been baptised, and has never rejected the Enemy on her own accord, this poses an issue for us. You wrote to me that, “it is not an issue as she hasn’t always gone to Church and hasn’t been catechised.” Again, I am not sure if this is incompetence or if you are trying to provide me with more reasons to suffocate your career.
It does not matter that she personally rarely goes to Church, as she is under her parents’ authority, and they themselves rarely attend. She does not intentionally avoid the Sacraments, therefore she cannot be held to account. You must understand that the Enemy claims there is some “spirit of the law,” and thus applies legal realities differently to humans in different contexts. He claims that this is out of “mercy” and “fairness,” but we know it is merely hypocrisy. The Church has always claimed that one must use their reason in a decision in order to fully commit a sin. Well, our Father Below used his reason at the beginning of time, and it was not enough for him to inherit the dignity and honour he so rightly deserved. You see? Hypocrisy.
As far as her not being catechised, in this case it is not to our benefit that this be so. The modern standards of catechisms have been one of our greatest assets. The girl knows they ought to fulfill their obligations, however she has not been in a place to travel on Sundays without her parents assistance or permission. That is until recently. Now that her brother has committed to believing, even against the express will of his parents, he has now arranged transportation for him and his sister. I know what you are thinking, and no, the young man is not breaking any commandments by disobeying his parents in this situation, as the Enemy claims that even a parent has no right to tell a child to negate their supposed religious duties. Once again we see the cognitive dissonance the Enemy expects out of them: on the one hand He expects them to obey proper authority, but on the other He expects them to rightfully think for themselves.
Nonetheless, since the parents are splendidly ignorant of anything the Church teaches, they entertain a parody in their minds of what it means to be a Christian. The modern Christian is often so far removed from any semblance of understanding of what is truly demanded of them by their faith, that they have relegated the whole affair to a sort of “self-help” system. If you are a Christian, you are expected to be nice, friendly, and inclusive; if you are in any way confrontational or unkind then you must be a “bad Christian” or not understand “what the Enemy really means in the Scriptures.” Whole orders of priests and religious leaders are now confident in spreading the mythical idea that the Great and Terrible Name wants them to take to heart that they are not in a place to judge; meanwhile they judge all Christians they disagree with as being the judgmental sort that isn’t “charitable.” Hypocrisy, a daughter of pride, is one of the most delectable delicacies that gives us untold amounts of souls to satiate our never ending thirst. The torture of mind and soul that a hypocritical Christian must endure wrenches their interior life into such a knot, that untangling them for our purposes is perhaps the greatest fun you will ever have.
The parents do not even pretend to be believing Christians, but because of the scant few years they spent at Bible camps and half a dozen religion classes, they believe they are experts. In their mind, their children are simply disobedient and misbehaved if they choose the Enemy’s wishes over theirs. Thankfully, they are convinced that religion should only serve to make you a better person—whatever that means—and since the children may now ignore their commands, Christianity must be making them worse.
In any case, the situation with the young girl is grave indeed. Now that she seems to be making a habit out of frequenting the Sacraments with her brother, and given that she possesses a virginal purity and innocence, she is virtually impenetrable to us. The Guardian that was employed for her when her life began has, as a result of her orientation towards Heaven, full permission to defend her soul like an impregnable fortress. Unless she herself assents to one of our advances, she may as well be considered a lost cause. What is worse, she is now interested in that garden of prayers that the Woman entrusted to Dominic. I will not mention its true name, as it evokes an unbearably sweet and fragrant image in my mind’s eye—it is a torturous endeavour to even contemplate.
The son has moved on from his confrontation with his parents, and his overcoming of the pain his parents caused him has unfortunately strengthened his resolve. Each evening, the girl and her brother now kneel at their bedside, as he leads her in that insufferable chain of beads that may as well be an atomic annihilation of all our efforts. Her innocence and childlike imagination facilitates a sort of voyage in her soul to a place totally enwrapped in the entrapments of the Enemy. Have you noticed that each night around the same time you are practically barricaded from even watching them? The rage that fills my spirit when I contemplate the impenetrability of this forcefield has made it hard to concentrate, you may notice my penmanship is a bit erratic as a result.
What is worse, by some stroke of luck, the normal tactics of sexualised music and celebrity idols have not had the effect on her that they do on the other children. She has always been somewhat of a “bookworm,” and therefore spends her free time losing herself in pages depicting stories of princesses, valiant knights, and simpler times. Since the young children are not susceptible to the carnal temptations, our greatest asset is their imagination. The brutal realism and debauchery of most film and art over the last century has greatly helped in priming the imaginations of the youth in our favour. However, as of yet we cannot get the older books out of print. We are making great strides however in this endeavour as we are now convincing more and more of them to view the stories of older historical eras with the contextual eye of modern political correctness. This means that the ridiculous social orthodoxy of today is the standard of what literature must be allowed from the past. It is remarkable, for centuries the Church had an index of books that were forbidden because they worked in our favour. But now we have our own sort of index that disallows literature that could work against our efforts. I do enjoy these infernal reversals!
Notwithstanding, the girl’s mind thinks with images that resemble fairy tale figures. The humans now use the term “fairy tale” as if it were a pejorative, which is helpful to us. Nonetheless, the truth of fairy tales is closer to the Enemy’s philosophy than any modern literature; they must be avoided. Has it ever struck you as relevant that since they have abandoned stories about defeating dragons and serving kings, that our Dragon Commander has made greater and greater strides in his lordship over the world?
What is worse, she does not now even lament the fact that she has never made too many friends, because the Enemy has now revealed to her that she was in fact saving herself for truer friendship with the angels and saints. I am nauseous even admitting these facts. How infuriating. Our only hope at this point is to encourage her father to lead her astray, as she adores him and as of yet has not realised how weak he is.