Puritanism and purity

As I have said before, the Imperialists were the original anticolonialists, starting out as the British antislavery movement, but, going back further, following the brilliant research of Moldbug, the Puritans were the original leftists.  Today’s leftists are connected in an unbroken chain of ideology, organizations, and personnel all the way back to the seventeenth century Puritans, with the nineteenth century anti slavery movement and the early twentieth century Christian left connecting them.

This includes the non Anglosphere leftists, in particular the French left.  The original French left were descended from Gallicanism, and thus from the Avignon papacy, not puritanism, but outside the Anglosphere, the left repeatedly self destructed in left singularities and was recreated by English speaking leftists backed by English speaking armies, so Gallican descended leftism was replaced by Puritan descended leftism.

(Digressing, the anglosphere left singularity approaches.  This will not necessarily be a good thing, since unlike all previous left singularities there is no one outside it and above it to pick up the pieces)

The most infamous characteristics of the Puritans were and are war on Christmas, war on marriage, and war on low status men getting any sex.

Supposedly, now that the left has disowned its Puritan heritage during the mid twentieth century, they have theoretically dropped the third factor, but ever stricter and ever more unreasonable standards of “consent” show they are still at it.  When the high school football star bangs the hot high school teacher, supposedly he did not consent, even though he is big enough and strong enough to break her like a twig.  The rationalizations shifted swiftly from nominally Christian to nominally anti Christian with no actual change in application.

The Puritans wanted to practice pure Christianity, modeled on the practices of the the early disciples of the new testament.  Unfortunately for them, the early disciples tell us in no uncertain terms that such purity is unchristian, for it excludes people from the faith for pleasant, customary, and trivial practices.

Romans 14 verse 10 “why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother?”

According to Paul, Romans 14, any unobjectionable ritual, practice, or rule is Christian if done outwardly and inwardly “unto God”, and its direct opposite is also equally Christian if done outwardly and inwardly unto God, which directive has been widely and reasonably interpreted as a directive to apply a thin spray of Christian symbolism over any existing practice that promotes family, good conduct, and community (such as the celebration of the unconquered sun, which is to say Christmas) and to welcome all people in such thinly Christian practices (which is to say, promote Christmas to non Christians and celebrate it with them).  According to Paul a Christian should never tell someone else that he is unchristian for doing or failing to do some harmless practice, and similarly Jesus said of the obscure, arbitrary, and complicated dietary rules of the Old Testament, that it is not what goes into your mouth that makes you impure, but what comes out of it.  Jesus dismissed Jewish purity, and Paul proceeded to dismiss Christian purity.   Jesus and Paul were the original latitudinarians.

The Puritans rejected all “invented” ceremonies, such as Christmas, which seems a harmless enough proscription, but becomes dangerously harmful when it becomes grounds for looking down on those that practice invented ceremonies as insufficiently Christian and disrupting their public practice of those ceremonies, becomes harmful when they set at nought their brothers.

The Puritan proscription immediately became a bid for political power, a bid for power in this world.  Unsurprisingly, Puritan doctrine immediately started to rapidly mutate into whatever most facilitated the pursuit of power, and continues to mutate to this day.  Among most of their successors and ideological descendents, the movement has lost any Christian characteristics.  There is no unchanging core of leftism, except power, though force of inertia means that some campaigns, such as war on Christmas, have continued unchanged the whole time since the sixteenth century, even though the rationale for the campaign has changed completely from time to time.

It also became extremely harmful when they rejected the “invented” sacrament of marriage.

The Puritans correctly pointed out that marriage in the time of the early Church was not a christian ceremony, not a sacrament.  They therefore proceeded to make marriage not a sacrament, which is to say, proceeded to desecrate it.

Marriage in the time of the early Church was not a sacrament but was a public ceremonial contract between a man, a woman, and the father of the bride, organized and conducted not by the Church, nor by the state, but by the patriarchs of the bride and groom.  Paul’s prescriptions for marriage (love, honor, cherish, engage in lots of sex, and the wife obeys) correspond to the contract agreed to between the bride and groom in that type of patriarchal marriage that was most honorable and respected in back in the time of the Roman Republic, marriage that was in Paul’s time (Early empire, nominally the late Republic) already somewhat old fashioned, conservative, and going out of style among the truly hip high status people.

When the Puritans made marriage not a sacrament, they did not restore the patriarchal marriage of the Old Roman Republic, still less the similar patriarchal marriage of the Jews of the time of Jesus.  Instead they had state marriage by a justice of the peace, the hip marriage of hip high status people.  No longer did the bride and the groom publicly agree to a contract laying out the duties of marriage, the husband to cherish the bride, worship her with his body, till death do them part, and the wife to cherish, worship, and obey, till death do them part.

Instead, under Puritan rule, the justice of the peace simply announced couple married, without any statement as to what they had agreed to, with neither God nor man informing them of the rights and duties of the contract.  The Puritans, in making marriage no longer a sacrament, did not restore it to its original form as it was at the time of the early Church of the New Testament, did not restore the patriarchal marriage ceremonies of the old Roman Republic, conducted by patriarchs of the original families establishing a new patriarchal family and the bride and groom making an irrevocable contract.  Instead, they made it state marriage, made it no longer a sacred contract, enforced by community, family, and God, which is to say they desecrated marriage.

That which is enforced merely by the state is not much enforced, and no contract is a contract if one is not informed of what one has agreed to.  Seeking state power, the Puritans abandoned the social support and enforcement of marriage, and within a few years after abandoning the sacrament of marriage in the middle of the seventeenth century, legalized divorce (more sex for high status men, less sex for low status men), though that divorce was still very restrictive by today’s standards.

The high status man needs no contract and wants no contract because he can get away with stuff.  The Puritans obliged, retaining the form of marriage, while emptying out the status of marriage.

And their ideological descendents, having abandoned every doctrine that made them Christian, having changed their stands on just about everything that was supposedly important, have not changed their stands on sex, marriage, and Christmas except to double down even further.

Early Christian Marriage:

The early christian prescriptions on marriage have the effect of maximizing reproductive and sexual activity and maximizing male investment in posterity, thus maximizing the Church’s internal biological growth under the conditions prevailing at the time.

Chastity, female subordination, and that there was no divorce except for female sexual misconduct maximized male paternal certainty, thus male investment in posterity.

Monogamy and near universal marriage meant that all males invested in posterity, rather than merely the usual third or so of males, and that sexual consent was once and forever maximized sexual activity:.

1:Corinthians 7:

let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.

Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.

The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.

Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time,

One more factor was needed to make this prescription work for maximum male investment. Genetic analysis shows that we have less than half as many distant male ancestor as distant female ancestors, indicating that throughout most of history, a rather small proportion of the males have fathered most of the children, that less than half as many males have been fathers as women have been mothers.

The Victorian take on this problem was that this was caused by evil lustful males oppressing naturally chaste and virtuous females, cruelly ravishing them in spite of their heartfelt desire to be good wives and mothers, but the current state of our campuses and our underclass reveals that the problem is the women, not the men. Women only want to have sex with higher status men.  If you doubt what I see, if you say you do not see what I see, download a romance at random.

Hence the low reproduction rate of our smartest and most heavily accredited females. They just don’t find males with similar or lower levels of accreditation sexy. They just are not turned on.  Eighteenth century patriarchs were worried that their daughters would crawl a hundred miles over broken glass to get impregnated by some bad boy.  Female PhD students really are not that interested, finding sex somewhat boring and unhygienic, at least really not that interested in their fellow students.

Monogamy requires higher status for males relative to females, if most females are going to feel motivated to get married in a timely manner.

So, to ensure that every man could have his own wife, and every woman her own husband. Paul proceeded to artificially make all men high status relative to all women. He forbade women to speak in church, and required them to cover their heads, which meant that all the girls in the congregation found all the boys in the congregation sexy, and all wanted to sign up for the Pauline marriage contract as fast as possible, and, the number of males being equal to the number of females, were usually able to do so, and did so, thereby maximizing male investment in posterity and Christian biological expansion.

Puritan and leftist marriage:

The Puritans found it difficult to get away with not making women cover their heads, since they were supposedly being pure and faithful to the bible, but could change the symbolic meaning of the head covering from submission, and they also just plain allowed women to speak in Church, cheerfully violating their pretended purity and supposed fidelity to the practices of the early church. This is not a recent change associated with the left’s open abandonment of Christianity. They had female preachers such as Anne Hutchinson early in the seventeenth century, presaging today’s university campuses and the hookup culture.

Raising the status of ordinary females to be equal to ordinary males means that the ordinary females will only find high status males attractive. Bingo, more sex for elite males, less reproductive sex, less total sex, less sex for regular males, less male investment in posterity, less total fertility, more deviant sexual activity.

Observe that supermarket checkout girls are undeterred by the risk of gravel rash.  They have markedly more enthusiasm than female PhDs.  So we still have halfway decent reproduction rates for supermarket checkout girls, but terrible rates of reproduction for high IQ females.

Leftism is, like most human activity, a male plot to get laid. But as the left becomes ever more unequal, as we approach the left singularity of infinite leftism in finite time, the number of leftists for whom it is working diminishes. In the nature of things, Puritanism was bad for most Puritans’ chances of having sex, and is worse for most leftists’ chances of having sex.

Puritan expansion focused on capture of the organs of state to impose their doctrine on all, rather than on biological expansion.

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19 Responses to “Puritanism and purity”

  1. Candide III says:

    Monogamy and near universal marriage meant that all males invested in posterity, rather than merely the usual third or so of males

    This has an interesting consequence besides maximizing male investment, which I haven’t seen mentioned before, probably because it’s really obvious. Here it is: When fewer males invest in posterity, not only does aggregate investment suffer but the aggregate productivity is reduced by the costs of security, i.e. defending their wives and capital from all the angry single men. The situation stabilizes at the point where spending on security (which is by itself almost completely unproductive and essentially wasteful) equals income minus capital maintenance. In modern societies this factor is mitigated because security is almost completely outsourced to the state, but the various manifestations of white flight could probably count. Income spent on higher rents and/or mortgage payments is not productive per se.

    • red says:

      The high price of Housing, schooling, commuting are all caused by crime. But the majority of modern crime has nothing to do with parental involvement. It’s almost entirely driven anarcho/tyranny which allows one tribal group rob, steal, murder, and rape the majority group. The police are primarily there to prevent the majority from putting an end to the favored groups reign of terror.

      • Candide III says:

        The high price of Housing, schooling, commuting are all caused by crime.

        I.e. it is spending on security.

        But the majority of modern crime has nothing to do with parental involvement.

        D. P. Moynihan respectfully disagrees with you.

        It’s almost entirely driven anarcho/tyranny which allows one tribal group rob, steal, murder, and rape the majority group. The police are primarily there to prevent the majority from putting an end to the favored groups reign of terror.

        You are being unfair to the police. I don’t remember any mass lootings of rich, tender white suburbs by the hordes and I believe far from all of them have private security (amounting to more than a couple of neighborhood watch grandas on a park bench).

        • jim says:

          Personal observation: Crime is primarily restrained by private violence, and inter ethnic crime is especially restrained by private violence. Police are pretty much irrelevant.

          Statistical observation: Black crime is primarily restrained by the presence of whites of scotch Irish ancestry, which is to say, whites with historically high propensity to engage in violence.

          The primary function of police is to impose the will of the state on the middle class, and their secondary function is to pick up underclass offenders who have been bagged by the middle class while they still have all their extremities attached.

        • red says:

          I grew up in a small town with lots of divorces, single parents, poverty and no diversity. Crime was very low. Today the town is 50% black, parents can’t send their kids outside to play and crime is through the roof.

          I’d also point out that the crime wave in the 60s started before the out of wedlock children were old enough to commit crimes.

          The police are quite clearly the problem. Read up the riots in Detroit and the LA riots. You’ll discover the police where deployed to protect the rioters, not to stop them.

          • jim says:

            I moved from silicon valley to a predominantly white tropical rural area free from blacks. Where I live, people don’t lock their houses or their cars when they leave, and everyone trusts everyone. But there are areas not far from me where you need to lock your doors, where there is vandalism, and kids don’t respect their elders. (Lack of respect being the first step towards the broken window syndrome) The crime rate in those areas is still ridiculously low by silicon valley standards, but it is not zero, and the main cause of it is white welfare kids from the wrong side of the blanket. I live in a zero crime area, but sometimes I go places that are not zero crime, and I resent needing to lock my car, resent the fear and distrust that surrounds me in those places, even though of course such places are still vastly better than the whitest parts of Silicon Valley

            If there are something fifty percent blacks around, then pretty much all crime that anyone is likely to care about is black attacks on whites motivated by race hate and protected by police, and all other crime fades into total insignificance.

            However, when you live in whiteopia, you forget about blacks, and start thinking it might be a good idea to sell all those kids from the wrong side of the blanket into chattel slavery to keep them out of trouble and instill discipline. We should replace welfare with debt slavery, thus solving the black problem and the bastardry problem simultaneously.

          • red says:

            “However, when you live in whiteopia, you forget about blacks, and start thinking it might be a good idea to sell all those kids from the wrong side of the blanket into chattel slavery to keep them out of trouble and instill discipline. We should replace welfare with debt slavery, thus solving the black problem and the bastardry problem simultaneously.”

            I would have agreed with you a few years ago, but then I read about Portugal, Greece, and other former slave holding lands. These nations suffered a massive IQ drop as the only thing that slaves are good at (breeding) overwhelmed the dominate population during bad times. England, Germany, France, all had their slave populations killed off(mostly starvation and the plague) during the middle ages and they replaced them with people from the middle and upper classes. This resulted in much better armies and better people in general. American’s stock is already overrun with children that would hardly qualify as worth working in the cotton fields. I want all slave level citizens deported to Liberia wither they be white, black, brown, or yellow. Commit a major crime? Welcome to exile. Your family produce more than one criminal? To exile they all go. Anything less and America will just end up being Portugal writ large.

  2. B says:

    You need to look in more detail at early Christian marriage and the Rabbinical marriage systems it replaced.

    In general, Moldbug is right-these things were present, potentially, in Christianity from the start.

    Universalism is a logical and inevitable outcome of Puritanism, which is a logical and inevitable outcome of Calvinism, which is a logical and inevitable outcome of Protestantism, which is a logical and inevitable outcome of Christianity, which is NOT a logical and inevitable outcome of Judaism.

    Once you let a guy (Paul) decide what is a Biblical commandment and what isn’t, sooner or later, in a process parallel to the evolution of a universal franchise, EVERYBODY will have this power. And the commandments they’ll arbitrate will inevitably include the marital/sexual ones (about which, BTW, Paul wasn’t sure-“if somebody’s married, let them stay married, if they’re a virgin, let them stay a virgin,” etc.)

    Once you varnish a truth (G-d is one and unchanging, with no parts or subdivisions) with an obvious lie taken from Grecoroman paganism (G-d can come down and have sex with women, impregnating them,) to make it palatable to a wider audience, sooner or later things will degenerate into a competition to see who can tell the most palatable lies, who can pander harder, who can make more forbidden things permissible, who can toss out more of the “superfluous” essentials. In this kind of system, truth has a halflife, and exponentially less is left with every generation.

    You can’t go back to an arbitrary point where decay was palatably slow. Even if you could, you would end right back here. You need to go through the current decay and atheism to get to a point of truth, as Rav Kook pointed out:

    “Atheism (heresy) comes as a cry from the depths of pain to redeem man from narrow and alien straights—to raise him up from the darkness of the letters and aphorisms to the light of ideas and feelings until faith finds a place to stand in the center of morality. Atheism has the right of temporary existence because it is needed to digest the filth adhered to faith for the lack of intellect and service.”

    • Erik says:

      No, it all started when we evolved from monkeys!

      But seriously, I’ve seen various suggested fixpoints from Stuarts (ruled England until 1700) to pre-Puritans (1600) to pre-Calvinists (1500) to pre-Protestantism to Orthodox Christianity (Great Schism 1100) and now pre-Christianity. Dates to nearest century.

      “Once you varnish a truth with an obvious lie…” – people’s standards for obviousness are different, but one can argue that Judaism fails this test too since “obviously” G-d wouldn’t care about the Jews in particular. It’s rather convenient that THE G-d (as compared to the rather more sensible household gods, city gods, and terrain feature gods of the Greco-Romans) would happen to be with the group that both benefits from that association and is the only one to believe that association, isn’t it?

      Maybe we should go back before religion entirely, because it all started when the weak and incompetent could invoke some invisible man who was super-strong and super-competent, with which to bludgeon the strong and the competent into ceasing to rule and instead doing what the weak and incompetent wanted.
      At the very least this line of argument suggests we should rule out all religions that encourage charity.

      • jim says:

        I’ve seen various suggested fixpoints from Stuarts (ruled England until 1700) to pre-Puritans (1600) to pre-Calvinists (1500) to pre-Protestantism to Orthodox Christianity (Great Schism 1100) and now pre-Christianity.

        As a non believer, I cannot see anything wrong with restoration Anglicanism, Anglicanism from the restoration to the early Victorian period. A fine prosocial religion, which supported order, private property, the family, the rule of law, the pursuit of truth, and the authority of the father. Under the rule of restoration Anglicanism, we had the industrial revolution, the scientific revolution, and British colonialists conquered most of the world. That was period of greatness on par with Golden Age of Classic Greece. What is not to like?

        • Adolf the Friendly Wolf says:

          You need a religion that is

          1.Has an immutable set of beliefs or
          2.Has an immutable structure that will always produce the ideas you want

          The only Christian group to have (1) are the Orthodox. Catholicism changes with the Pope. Protestantism changes with the individual.

          Catholicism had (2), until the Progressives directed enough propaganda at the Catholic hierarchy. And the Catholic hierarchy, against their own incentives, endorsed Progressivism.

    • jim says:

      Universalism is a logical and inevitable outcome of Puritanism, which is a logical and inevitable outcome of Calvinism, which is a logical and inevitable outcome of Protestantism, which is a logical and inevitable outcome of Christianity, which is NOT a logical and inevitable outcome of Judaism.

      Anglicanism did fine from the Restoration to the reign of Queen Victoria. Today’s Judaism is, for the most part, not doing fine. Seems to me that a good point to draw the line is with the guys who did socialist experiments and de-sacralized marriage. Before then, Christianity had sixteen centuries of doing alright.

      Once you varnish a truth (G-d is one and unchanging, with no parts or subdivisions) with an obvious lie taken from Grecoroman paganism (G-d can come down and have sex with women, impregnating them,) to make it palatable to a wider audience, sooner or later things will degenerate into a competition to see who can tell the most palatable lies,

      The Talmud is a bunch of rabbis rewriting the old testament.

      Old Testament Judaism was bloody and dangerous. It had to be fixed up. Old Testament Jews were a danger to their neighbors, the Romans and to themselves. Getting in someone with divine authority to ditch the bad bits was the least dangerous way of fixing it up, a better solution than the Talmud.

      You can’t go back to an arbitrary point where decay was palatably slow.

      Seventeen hundred years after the founding of Christianity, Anglicanism was fine. No signs of decay. Seventeen hundred years after the founding of Christianity, the Puritans were desacralizing marriage and attempting socialism. They were not just decaying, they were alarmingly decayed. The problem was not getting in a prophet with divine authority to fix up a religion, the problem is that priests got the upper hand over soldiers.

    • Candide III says:

      Humans being what they are, I don’t think it is possible to construct a religion, system of knowledge, political system etc. that would have no potential for decay. However, it is easier to be on guard against decay when its rate is still palatably slow. As for going through current decay, as you put it, going “back” will automatically involve that. I put “back” in quotes because I don’t think advocates of going “back” actually advocate forgetting all history between point A and point B as if it never existed. There is much to learn from it that can stand us in good stead in the future.

    • josh says:

      Sola scriptura is not an inevitable outcome of Christianity. Jesus established a visible Church with ordained bishops. The Church authorized any official scripture. The Churches of apostolic secession, Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodox have been shockingly true to the original doctrine (though individual Bishops and organizations within the Church have been corrupt). The Church’s official position in 2012 is still that usury is a sin. Think about that.

  3. KK says:

    Genetic analysis shows that we have less than half as many distant male ancestor as distant female ancestors, indicating that throughout most of history, a rather small proportion of the males have fathered most of the children, that less than half as many males have been fathers as women have been mothers.
    This is such a fundamental point and its implications are so far-reaching that I’d like to see a comprehensive source for it. It’s quoted often among these circles, and it does pass the smell test, but I’ve only found one primary source. Unsurprisingly it’s from Roy Baumeister.

    In it, Baumeister hypothesizes that while the male-female ratio of ancestors is accurate, the actual proportions are not. We might be looking at a reproduction rate of 40%M / 80%F that was thrown about as a wild guess at Roissy’s place or somewhere else way back, or the actual numbers might be something like 20%M / 40%F.

    Some contextual info would also be interesting. Are we talking about live births or sexually mature humans when measuring the ancestor ratio? I have no idea about historical infant mortality and such factors.

    • v says:

      Ditto on the smell test. Also, I’d love to hear a primer on how something like that is even computed. It would have to be some slightly hand-wavey statistical regression.

      For long stretches obstetric mortality was pretty horrific. And fathers were paying dudes to take their daughters off their hands. The “harem” model of human sexuality doesn’t sound right or match with what trivial anthropology and history I know. kings, warlords, and movie-stars are fairly modern phenomenon. Some guy with the same spear as everyone else had no 2X advantage over the average.

      • jim says:

        When I attempted to source this widely reported claim, I had considerable difficulty, which casts doubt upon it.

        Roy gives no source, at least not in this widely cited post.

        In principle, it is easy enough. You sample the extent to which Y chromosome lineages are closely related, and compare it to the extent to which Mitochondrial DNA lineages are closely related. If there are fewer patrilinear progenitors than matrilineal progenitors … This, however is rendered complicated by the fact that one would like to know progenitors at time X, where time X is some reasonably recent population bottleneck, and it is difficult to compare time for mitochondrial lineages as against Y chromosome lineages.

  4. sark says:

    Hello. Pretty enlightening article!

    I don’t understand one thing though. Why would women look to their *own* status when comparing the status of candidate male partners? If two guys have statuses A, B, then isn’t the only relevant question if A<B? Why would the status G of the girl be relevant? i.e. all of G<A<B, A<G<B, A<B<G should produce equivalent behavior on her part. What am I missing?

  5. jim says:

    Why would women look to their *own* status when comparing the status of candidate male partners? If two guys have statuses A, B, then isn’t the only relevant question if A

    In the ancestral environment, the apex fallacy was not a fallacy.

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