Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Tyranny (via a government wherein the rights and liberties of the people are violated at will, and where the people possess no effective remedy to hold the transgressors accountable. 

Authoritarian (via characteristic of an absolute ruler or absolute rule/a person who behaves in a tyrannical manner/expecting unquestioning obedience.

Totalitarian (via characterized by a government in which the political authority exercises absolute and centralized control; "a totalitarian regime crushes all autonomous institutions in its drive to seize the human soul." ~Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.
(and via a governmental system led by a dictator having complete power, forcibly suppressing criticism, regimenting all industry, commerce, et cetera, and emphasizing an aggressive nationalism and often racism.

You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them. But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must become your slave. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Power is a funny thing. It typically is only wielded in a healthy manner by those who don't really desire power and don't assume it, but rather treat it as a responsibility and a service. For people who desire it and assume it, it's all-consuming, creating and needing it's own eco-system to thrive - and more often than not, they're the only people who genuinely benefit from their exercise of power.

Unhealthy and illegitimate power has one goal: the defense, nourishment, security, and growth of that power. I can't stress enough that it needs its own unnatural and illegitimate eco-system

I'd like to examine the power structure of the patriarchal movement.

As I discussed here and here, the power base of P/QF, or as I often call it, radical fundamentalist Christian Islam, operates as a large cult (the movement as a whole) which breaks down into a network of smaller, feeder cults (the individual families who practice the belief systems), in all of which the authority figures create demands where none exist and then demand to meet those demands. As I discussed here, it's all fed and sustained by irrational fear. Illegitimate power requires action to be taken all around the figure of power to sustain and uphold the position of the powerful. Think Hitler. Think Stalin. Think Saddam. The first step they all took upon seizing power was to eradicate their enemies. All threats had to be eradicated. Not appeased. Not heard out or understood. Not worked with on non-partisan terms. Eradicated. Then, additional steps were taken and continued to be taken for the duration of their reign to solidify and uphold their power. New and irrational laws, fear-mongering, propaganda, genocide, you name it.

Most patriarchs base their power around a couple of passages like Ephesians 5:22-33. While I still wouldn't agree with a literal, vacuumized interpretation of that passage, if a man comes to the conclusion that this scripture instructs him to be the head of his home, I don't take a tremendous amount of issue with that. The problem arises when a handful of other, equally as ancillary verses are contorted and misappropriated to substantiate the patriarchal/patriocentric "head" interpretation. Suddenly, women are under a curse and are easily deceived, are completely unfit for leadership, they're weaker than men in more ways than physically, and they're absolutely helpless and hopeless without a man to "cover" them. The bible doesn't teach this. The movement does.

But even this isn't enough, on it's own, to hold the male base of patriarchal power, so new bible is written...

Children, particularly daughters, are suddenly required to adopt their father's vision for life as their own - despite there being not even a trace of scripture that teaches or necessitates such a thing. The movement necessitates it. This is expected to continue all the way to marriage, regardless of age. The movement necessitates it. Children are expected to be the workforce in the family home-business, and to continue the father's vision for this enterprise into their adulthood. The movement necessitates it. Formulaic living and ideas like courtship become the gospel in these families. Fathers want control over the "vision" and system of belief of a potential husband for his daughter, hoping to cull and weed out those unwilling to conform to his own vision. The bible doesn't teach or necessitate any such thing. The movement does. 200 year plans are put in place, despite the bible actually teaching against this kind of thing as pride and evil. The movement necessitates it. Being a neo-patriarch becomes the highest, most sacred of "callings" for men. Being a mother becomes the highest, most sacred of "callings" for women. The bible doesn't teach or necessitate any of this. The movement necessitates it. The biological family unit becomes the single most important entity on the earth. All things spiritual must course through it's veins to actually have any merit. The bible doesn't teach this, and Jesus made it clear that ALL who do the will of the Heavenly Father are family. But, it doesn't matter what the bible says. It matters what the movement says.

All of these things, which aren't "biblical" at all, get raised, falsely and dishonestly, to the level of biblical commands. Patrios are in many cases (maybe most cases) willing to make the life of those who won't bow the knee on these extra-biblical altars a literal hell on earth. Emotional abuse, leverage, and blackmail, in some cases physical abuse, in ALL cases ostracization. Why is this?...Because these men are utterly powerless to fulfill their vision of "biblical patriarchy" without these totalitarian human additions to the concept. It simply won't work without them. Tyranny. Authoritarianism. Totalitarianism. Forcing people into roles which they may or may not be suited for (or "called" to) all to meet the demands of the system.

Once finished, an entire system of belief and way of life is founded on what amounts to a whole lot of scriptural nothing. Ancillary verses, supported by other misappropriated ancillary verses, serving as the foundation of life itself.

For an example of this power as it's wielded - Q: What's one way for a pastor to keep his congregation from getting speeding tickets? A: Convince them that it's a sin to drive a car, and that they're tip-toeing on the verge of hellfire for even thinking about so much as riding in one unless he's in it with them. I mean, hey, all he wants is to keep them from speeding, and he's getting what he wants. All the other stuff, like the fact that he's screwing up their moral compass, creating perceptions in them that are totally false, manipulating them through fear and spiritually abusing them, means little to him. He's getting what he wants, so he's making up all of the other nonsense and screwing up lives to achieve the end. He's getting what he wants. He now has control over that aspect of their lives, and it's likely opened up new income opportunities for him, what with this created fear now available to be exploited. Fear, as always, is big business.

It's the only way as he sees it. The ONLY way. That justifies it in his perverted eyes. It doesn't hurt that it also stands to be pretty lucrative for him in the short and long term.

Same with patriarchy. It's all about money, politics, and POWER over others.

From Jon Roland's "Principles of Tyranny"...

The Methodology of Tyranny

Control of public information and opinion
Vote fraud used to prevent the election of reformers
Undue official influence on trials and juries
Usurpation of undelegated powers
Seeking a government monopoly on the capability and use of armed force
Militarization of law enforcement
Infiltration and subversion of citizen groups that could be forces for reform
Suppression of investigators and whistleblowers
Use of the law for competition suppression
Subversion of internal checks and balances
Creation of a class of officials who are above the law
Increasing dependency of the people on government
Increasing public ignorance of their civic duties and reluctance to perform them
Use of staged events to produce popular support
Conversion of rights into privileges
Political correctness

It's amazing how well and how easily this methodology translates to patriarchy and spiritual abuse.

Like I said, power is a funny thing.


  1. One point that I wish I had emphasized re: the example of the pastor/congregation and speeding tickets...

    A responsible Christian authority figure would merely point to the Lord and to biblical teaching, such as living in accordance with the laws of the land. Instead, to socially and culturally engineer the outcome that HE personally believes is right, he speaks where the bible doesn't, changing the "transportation culture", making it fear-based, and thereby establishing the power and prominence of his own words in the minds of the congregants.

    I think this summarizes religious totalitarianism (such as the patriarchal movement).

  2. The two things they do to justify their thinking are:

    1) They use proof-texts, lifting verses out of context and using them as weapons and tools of control. "Honor thy father and mother" is one of these (except they twist it to mean "Children and mothers, honor the patriarch.")

    2) They take certain cultural norms of the ancient peoples into which God spoke His word, call the cultures themselves "biblical," and try to resurrect those cultures as if just existing in biblical times makes those cultures divinely inspired and sanctioned by God as THE way to live.

    In this way they can use God's own name to buttress their power. This is the ultimate way to "take the name of the Lord your God in vain." They think that verse is about swearing-- but one day they're going to be surprised.

  3. From what I can tell "Honor thy father and mother" often means worship the patriarch!

    Not content to confine the verse to what is says,to honor the good in a father, this command is whipped out to chastise anyone who dares comment on a flaw or fault of the patriarch! "Honor" is redefined as "praise only".

    Of course God is the only one worthy of only praise, so by refusing to allow anyone to question, challenge or correct the patriarch, they are setting him up as a god. The idolatry is blatant, and yet it is presented as obedience to one of the top ten.

    I can honor someone by acknowledging the good that is in them and that they have accomplished, without giving up my critical thinking or my right to disagree. I will treat with respect a politician who proposes a law I disagree with, honoring his accomplishment in attaining the office he holds and even assuming his good will in proposing said law. I will also vigorously explain why I think that law is a bad idea, without resorting to personal insult and appealing to logic and good will to get my point across.

    Patriarchs do not allow this in their homes. They define submission as unquestioning compliance and unconditional approval of all the patriarch does/says/believes. They believe that scripture gives them this place in the life of their families, and deride any person out of compliance with this narcissistic vision.

    Thanks Lewis for pointing out how tryannical and abusive the patriarchal model is in reality. It is so far from the kingdom of God; light years removed from the new command Jesus gave us- to love one another as he has loved us, the greatest living as the servant (true servant meaning SERVANT! Not the new twisted interpretation of "benevolent dictator") of ALL.