Well, seems that Telesphorus got banned today over at CI. A good handful of people appreciated that. Less people seem miffed or shaken. How a person can go on for so long without realizing how they sound to other people is sometimes beyond me. But I've met a few folks in life that just never seem to get it. They just never thought about delivery.
"A man amiable in society shall be more friendly than a brother." Proverbs 18:24
In any event, this little bonus came in a thread titled: Prove or Disprove - CathInfo represents Typical Trad Catholics. It's been an enjoyable thread so far. It was originally started up by the forum owner, Matthew, who wanted to take a public examination of the nature of the CathInfo forum.
My favorite conclusion was from someone quoting Oscar Wilde, and this person goes by the online name of 1st Mansion Tenant:
"Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth." Oscar Wilde, Critic as Artist 1891.
I enjoy this line. Although, in the case of the posters on CathInfo, I think it would be more accurate to say: People are least themselves when they talk in their own person. Give them masks, and they will show you the truth of their hearts.
That, I think, would sum up what we are witnessing on forums and on internet commentary sections.
But there's more self examination going on in the other two forums I lurk at. Over at Fisheaters, where I really don't post anymore, there is a thread started by the forum owner, Vox Clamantis. It is titled: The Reputation of Trads. There's some testimonies there, and some talk about their encounters with other Traditional Catholics. Harsh Trads are discussed as well. Someone mentioned how Protestants try to "love bomb" visitors to their churches, and I laughed to myself as I remember the fakery and cliquishness I witnessed when I was still Baptist.
Finally, Suscipe Domine had a thread called What do you perceive as the signs of the times for trads right now? I posted here, and I offered up the possibility that a lot of Traditional Catholics are acting unreasonable and uncharitable and closed in. I'm not saying they should take a John Paul II approach and start kissing korans and dance charismatically or anything like that. Just take a look in the mirror and realize how to talk to people.
The "Mad Trad" phenomenon--though insulting for a lot of us--is real.
The Devil is also playing with pieces within the "resistance."
This movement is populated with some who desperately want to be relevant, and are blind to how uncharitable they come off. I'm talking about people who are unable to form or maintain personal relationships on most levels. These people are bitter and insulting. You could tell them the sky is blue, and they'll happily insult you, tell you you are going to Hell, and their groupies will surround them and back them up.
What can I compare this to? It's like watching piranha. Or an outbreak of zombies. Or a firing squad formed in a circle.
The attacks and venomous hatred for a lot of self-righteous Traditional Catholics very much sounds like demonic insults during exorcisms.
If Traditional Catholicism is to go to the next levels, this issue will have to be addressed collectively at some point in the next few years, or this movement will die.
Not many folks dwelled on what I was getting at there, and that's fine. Perhaps this trend of understanding will have to become more established for folks to wrap their mind around it.
Trads themselves, I suppose, probably don't see this phenomenon of "The Mad Trad." However people on the outside, such as the Catholic Answers Forum see it clearly, and they use it to take sarcastic and tasteless pot shots at all Traditionalists, much to the detriment of the Catholic Church. Modernist Catholics and non-Catholics see the Traditionalists' dirty laundry, and they will judge the entire counter-revolutionary Catholic movement on those fruits. Combating this tarnished image is hard enough. At this point, not only will the Traditionalist Catholic have to fight the evils of modernism, but he'll have to struggle to dispel the myths created by the fellow layman who lacks social discipline.
UPDATE: In regards to Oscar Wilde, 1st Mansion Tenant states: "I am no fan of Mr. Wilde."