Schism: the ‘new heresy’ versus the ‘new orthodoxy’
The rights of people with ‘alternative’ beliefs are not being upheld, even while most kinds of other personal convictions are. This flies flagrantly in the face of free speech laws which state that ‘all forms of expression’, within legality, should be respected; yet few seem to care nor see the slippery slope toward a wider society of control that denigrating one part of the population will precipitate. Andy Thomas
The world is in a horrendous muddle: conflict, confusion, contradiction and conundrum abound. Amid the malphonic chorus of contemporary life, a great agitation of minds, one can’t help feeling that reality is being distorted to the point of absurdity.
Nowhere is this more discernible than in the phenomenon of the ‘new heretics’, among whom are those who dare to challenge, publicly or otherwise, orthodoxies and mainstream narratives appertaining, for example, to ‘climate action’ and covid-19, and who are persecuted, with the seeming fervour of a ‘Holy Inquisition’, by being sidelined or muzzled and accused of ‘thoughtcrime’.
For such orthodoxies are defended with religious zeal with all the symptoms of a ‘cultural virus’ attacking freedom of expression.
The Catholic Church maintained power for centuries through faith and ‘weaponised’ fear. Those who contradicted the church’s teachings were deemed guilty of heresy, their books burned or banned, and sometimes the heretic committed to the flames, too. To speak disrespectfully of anything regarded as holy was blasphemy, punishable even by death, a situation which still exists in many Islamic nations in a religion much younger than Christianity.
In February 2021, I published ‘So much at stake for today’s heretics’ at Medium, in which I wrote:
‘Today’s heretics are not burned at the stake but marginalised, suppressed or ridiculed — even ostracised by their scientific, medical or academic communities: a metaphorical burning, if not of books then of reputations, no matter how impressive and relevant their credentials and status might be in their own fields of endeavour.
‘Heresy has moved from a religious to a secular context and today can be defined as a belief or opinion profoundly in conflict with what is generally accepted…