Progressivism is a multipronged deviation from the straight and narrow that talks — or takes — people off the path to the New Jerusalem and toward false secular utopias. In this loose coalition, these otherwise unreconcilable strays are drawn in by a lack of gratitude and the sense that "better" must be anywhere other than here and anyone besides those present. And they're kept together by a Procrustean vibe – and what they've turned their backs on.
The arch-conservative Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn emphasized in both “Leftism” and “The Menace of the Herd, or Procrustes at Large” how the left – a term that encompasses the progressive movement – takes after Procrustes, the legendary highwayman of Attica.
In Greek mythology, Procrustes, also known as Damastes, "tied his victims upon an iron bed, and, as the case required, either stretched or cut off their legs to adapt them to its length.”
Like Procrustes, progressives have a habit of socially, legally, or literally hacking away at those parts or wholes of human beings that fail to fit into their preconceived systems. The 20th century is full of atrocities in which millions of innocents were cut up because progressives in the Soviet Union, Germany, Cambodia, and elsewhere, with an eye to purportedly better futures, desired that all bodies and minds fit the lengths of their Procrustean beds.
This tendency is clear also in other progressive subgroups, such as the eugenicists and transsexual activists, who both seek to cut away at biological realities they find undesirable.
This Procrustean verve is, however, becoming especially pronounced among the transhumanists of our day.
Before noting some of the ways the transhumanist movement is working to carve up a new mankind, it is important first to note the other tendency that unites progressives.
Progressives share in common a prideful rejection of the primacy of God, the goodness of His creation, and the worth of the humanity Christ endured and elevated with his suffering, death, and resurrection. Simply put: Progressivism is Luciferian.
In the garden, the serpent — who cannot create but can only distort and destroy — told Eve of eating the forbidden fruit, “Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods.”
Eve was enticed not to emulate or follow the one true God, but to follow Satan’s example and seek divinity besides and without God, contrary to His will.
This lack of humility and the desire to be independent of God not only resulted in the fall of mankind, but has ever since stained progressive efforts to achieve immortality and to escape the humanity that was evidently valued enough by God for Christ to take on and save.
C.S. Lewis wrote in “Mere Christianity," “People often ask when the next step in evolution – the step to something beyond man – will happen. But in the Christian view, it has happened already.”
He went on to write, “In Christ a new kind of man appeared: and the new kind of life which began in Him is to be put into us.”
Technological and political innovations aside, the apex of humanity and the superlative by which the comparative “progress” should be measured was nailed to a tree two millennia ago.
The Christian understanding is that the pursuit of God and true progress means trying to follow Christ and fit the cross. After all, on the cross are perfection and immortality, which entail the very suffering and death the transhumanist seeks to eliminate.
The transhumanist endeavor, ultimately, is to pursue godhood by rejecting the cross and setting oneself down on Procrustes’ bed, cutting off anything resembling the Son of Man. In this sense, transhumanism is the epitome of regression.
Artificial wombs, brain implants, virtualization of everything in the anti-sacramental Metaverse, transsexuality – these transhumanist drives away from our humanity each substitute parts of what makes us human and human life worth living. What’s more, they amount to sterile shortcuts off the path to the New Jerusalem that cut away at the travelers who take them.
A video from Yemeni “science communicator” Hashem Al-Ghaili entitled “EctoLife: The World’s First Artificial Womb Facility” recently went viral, discussing the so-called “bioreactors” that may soon supplant mothers and enable investors to “genetically engineer” prospective children, reported the Christian Post.
The mother and the bond she enjoys with her baby, unborn and newborn, appear not to fit the transhumanists' Procrustean bed.
EctoLife: The World’s First Artificial Womb Facilityyoutu.be
Rather than improve the ways we teach or understand, the transhumanists appear keen to change the raw material that is taught or comprehended. The brain implants that may one day soon help the blind to see and the lame to walk will in short order be also used – along with some version of OpenAI's ChatGPT – as stand-ins for the common man’s common sense.
The promise of Zuckerberg’s Metaverse is that we can skip the messy, real interactions between human beings that we have long enjoyed, at least up until the pandemic, and instead stream into false realities remotely. The new humanity need not risk adventure or moral consequence in the world of flesh and bone that God deemed good. These experiences will join our common sense and the other cuttings at the foot of Procrustes' bed.
G.K. Chesterton reminds us in “Orthodoxy” — the book that helped set the militant atheist and World War I infantryman C.S. Lewis on his way to Christian conversion — “You may, if you like, free a tiger from his bars; but do not free him from his stripes. Do not free a camel of the burden of his hump: you may be freeing him from being a camel.”
The transhumanist prong of the progressive movement is doing precisely that: freeing us camels of our humps.
This Luciferean movement appears eager to take the whole of our species away from the straight and narrow, presuming the raw material made in the image of God needs to change, as opposed to the will and moral reflexes of the immortal, albeit imperfect, persons animating it.
“If you are on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; and in that case, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive,” wrote Lewis.
The progressive coalition and all its Procrustean subgroups, transhumanism in particular, appear to have taken a wrong turning and are desperate for us to go with them, bereaving us of our proverbial humps along the way. For all their hacking and dreaming, their efforts to go forward have not brought them anywhere nearer the place where we all ought to be: not like gods, apart from God, but with God in Christ.