A Review of Live Not By Lies. By Rod Dreher

Dec 30, 2020 by

by Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch:

We all need to read Dreher’s important new book:

“Open war is upon you whether you would risk it or not.” Some of you may recall that line of Aragorn to Theoden in Tolkien’s The Two Towers. And it is now fully applicable to what Christians find in the West today. As genuine persecution begins to mount, only real deal Christians will be able to stand and withstand – not the fake ones. The time of playing games is over. The time of a cross-less Christianity is long gone.

That is one of the main takeaways from this important new volume by Rod Dreher. The American Christian writer and commentator especially came into prominence back in 2017 with the release of his widely discussed book, The Benedict Option: A Strategy for Christians in a Post-Christian Nation.

In it he said – among other things – that taking a tactical and temporary timeout from the culture wars might be a wise thing to do. See my discussion of that book here: billmuehlenberg.com/2017/06/11/strangers-strange-land-christianity-contemporary-culture/

His new book is also getting a lot of attention. The title may seem strange, until one understands that it comes from an essay by Solzhenitsyn, the last one he wrote before being evicted from the Soviet Union. In the piece he told the Russian people that totalitarianism is built on lies and the people’s fear. The way to defeat it is to not live by lies.

The importance of Solzhenitsyn and others who have lived under totalitarian regimes is they know how it works. They have been there and done that. Some of their stories are recounted here. And these brave souls who are now living in the West are utterly shocked at how clueless Westerners are as they follow the same path to totalitarianism – although via new means.

And the two main means by which this is happening today is by so-called social justice, where group identity trumps the individual, and by technological surveillance. As to the former, the West is of course awash in identity politics:

Read here

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