Book Write-Ups: Libido Dominandi, The Jewish Revolutionary Spirit (E. Michael Jones)

This is a break from my Pat Buchanan series, to allow me more space to read Pat’s books.

A. E. Michael Jones. Libido Dominandi: Sexual Liberation and Political Control. St. Augustines, 1999.

This is the first E. Michael Jones book that I read. Jones is a controversial Catholic academic, criticized by such groups as the Anti-Defamation League and the Southern Poverty Law Center. Libido Dominandi is a profile of the sexual revolution, and it goes from the seventeenth century through the twentieth century. Essentially, Jones argues that the push for sexual liberation flows from two motivations. First, there is hostility towards traditional Christian morality. This came from the Illuminati during the eighteenth century, and also from certain Jewish thinkers who were social outsiders in predominantly Christian societies in Europe. A desire to undermine the prevalent order formed part of this particular motivation, but so did a desire to be free from traditional sexual restrictions. Second, there was a desire for political control. Think Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World: the political establishment maintains its power by allowing people to indulge in their hedonistic urges. As long as the people are deleriously happy, they will not care who is controlling and exploiting them. For Jones, this explains why Communist Russia was initially in favor of sexual liberation. Over time, however, it became more restrictive and conservative. Jones also talks about the push to persuade African-Americans to become promiscuous and portray them as exemplars of sexual freedom. According to Jones, this push ran contrary to the moral, responsible lives that most African-Americans led prior to the 1960’s. Jones also details the flaws of the Kinsey studies. An intriguing spiritual point that Jones makes is that masturbation and religious devotion are two contrary, and irreconcilable, ways to cope with life, implying that doing one will undermine the desire to do the other. Personally, I find that both sexual and religious desire are within me, with neither lessening the other. This book contains biographical profiles and hits the same points repeatedly. One may understandably feel that Jones contradicts himself in places or jumps to conclusions, but the book is still a repository of information.

B. E. Michael Jones. The Jewish Revolutionary Spirit and Its Impact on World History. Fidelity, 2008.

This book essentially argues that the rejection by most Jews of Christ as the Messiah has been a repudiation of reason that has led them to fall back on political revolution as the means to make the world better. Whereas Christianity has a spiritual vision, Jones contends, Judaism is quite carnal, as it stresses an earthly paradise with material prosperity. Such a vision coincides with political revolution.

Jones’s story begins in the first century C.E., as Jews participated in violent revolution against Rome, reflecting their preference for the revolutionary Barabbas over Jesus. But Jones’s story continues throughout history up to the twentieth century, traversing such topics as Julian the Apostate, John Huss, the Protestant Reformation, Freemasonry, Communism, Woody Allen’s crass mockeries, and neoconservatism.

The Southern Policy Law Center (SPLC), not surprisingly, calls Jones an anti-Semite, but Jones emphatically rejects the racial anti-Semitism of such groups as the Nazis. Rather, Jones supports Jewish conversion to Christianity, which has occurred throughout history, particularly in medieval times.

Particularly intriguing is Jones’s account of anti-Catholic movements, including John Huss and the Protestant Reformers. A formidable influence on my conception of these figures was such books as Ellen White’s The Great Controversy and Fox’s Book of Martyrs, which, of course, depicted the Catholic authorities as the villains. Jones, a traditional Catholic, goes the opposite route. John Huss comes across as an irrational apocalyptic revolutionary, and Martin Luther not only is a drunk but also a whore-monger. In terms of Jewish influence on these figures, part of it, I vaguely recall from the book, was actual Jewish support, but even more it includes the impact of a literal interpretation of Old Testament motifs on these figures, including violent warfare and support for an earthly material paradise.

Jones’s book is no light read. It runs over 1000 pages, and lots of words are on each page! Even apart from that, the book is heavy—-not incomprehensible or dense, mind you, but heavy. Many Christians, particularly those under the influence of the Social Gospel or N.T. Wright, might consider Jones’s conception of Christianity to be overly spiritualistic, as they believe that God cares for the material world and the people in it. They would have a point, even though, of course, revolution has had its share of pitfalls.

About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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