Commentary: Mightier Than The Sword (Part Seven)
John W. Ritenbaugh
Given 04-Jul-15; 12 minutes
When we left off regarding Rousseau’s personal failings, I told you of his never marrying but nonetheless producing five children. Within hours after they were born, he abandoned them on the steps of a nearby orphanage. As far as is known, they all had the same mother.
Nobody knows the gender of any of them because he literally abandoned them without reporting to anybody in the administration of the orphanage or to the state. At least one of these abandonments took place in the dead of winter. He was literally without any feeling for them. He was a sociopath and his concern from them was nil, as I will go on to show.
The only reason these abandonments are known is that he mentioned them in casual conversations with acquaintances as if they were of little consequence. This is the same man who maintained that he believed in God, but out of hand rejected many, many doctrines and published that Christians make poor citizens. Those remarks resulted in much persecution of Christians in France because his words were so highly esteemed by those in power.
He revived the myth that Christians were responsible for the decline and fall of Rome. He rejected the truths about hell and of original sin. He denied all miracles and considered all religions as equally credible. This and many other comments regarding Christianity and Christians were of such magnitude that he made the theological discrepancies of John Locke seem as child’s play by comparison.
This so-called great man was a source of embarrassment to almost all of his acquaintances because if he had the urge, he would urinate in public almost anywhere he happened to be as long as it was outside.
His hubris regarding himself was without bounds. Incredibly, Rousseau referred to himself as the greatest lover of mankind who every lived. He wrote, “I love myself too much to hate anybody." He again wrote, “If there were a single enlightened government in Europe, it would have erected statues to me.” He would gush,
The person who can love me as I can love is still to be born; no one has ever had more talent for loving. I was born to be the best friend that ever existed. I would leave this life with apprehension if I knew a better man than me. Show me a better man than me, a heart more loving, more tender, more sensitive. Posterity will honor me because it is my due. I rejoice in myself; my consolation lies in my self-esteem.
(There is much more of this.) This is a man who willfully abandoned his newborns because he couldn’t be bothered by the responsibility to give them love. This is even more interesting because he had affairs with other women while he lived with the birth mother.
One of those women, was named Sophie d’Houdetot, commented after his death that Rousseau was a “pathetic figure, an interesting madman.”
This is a brief picture of the personal life of a man considered by many modern philosophers and political leaders as the father of the modern secular state. This is the madman who laid the philosophical foundation of the world we now live in. Rousseau did not give the world a complete plan of his vision, but he did give concepts that gave others ideas of how to apply them in their fields of endeavor. From these ideas, others further expanded them into actual governing practices. Thus today, the Western world collectively has a 40-50% birthright of children born out of wedlock and without fathers. It is not just the United States; it is the whole Western world. Here in the United States of America, the rate is near 70% in some populations, in some areas of the United States, born without fathers.
This is largely made possible by a cradle-to-grave social welfare system available to almost anyone who drew from his concepts. He did not lay down detailed plans, but others with religious, political, and military interests applied his ideas in their fields of endeavor. Rousseau was highly influential, hopelessly utopian, wildly arrogant and outrageously popular among other academics, one of which was John Dewey, who is generally looked upon as the father of America's modern educational system. But more about him later. Dewey called Rousseau "a sublime genius; the greatest educational reformer of modern times."
Rousseau provides some insight into how his mind operated regarding his abandoning his children. He wrote, “How could I achieve the tranquility of mind necessary for my work, my garret filled with domestic cares and the noise of children?” Rousseau was all about himself. He cared not a whit, really, about others. How could he create a utopia for the rest of the world by providing a life of hell for his own children?
In the future, as the truth becomes known, people are going to ask why so many people in leadership positions could be taken in by the ideas of an anti-God lunatic. The reason they could is that they allowed themselves to be swayed by their own inner drives for personal power in their fields of endeavor rather than adhere to the principles of self-governance under God provided in God's word. This deranged madman's orphanage experiences eventually grew into government-funded day-schools, preschools, day-cares and foster cares so that both father and mother can leave the home to go to work, and of course, seemingly feed the economy through taxation while so doing.
Notice I said "seemingly feed the nation's economy," but in actual practice, it doesn't work because the cost of the government increases dramatically in other areas of the social system, like for crime prevention systems, in order to compensate for the lack of a father in the family.
Rousseau's utopian pipe-dreams are supposed to draw in the gullible masses. He proposed a world of maximum freedom through autonomy, where every man is a law unto himself. Somehow the state is supposed to protect everyone, even though each individual—to use Rousseau's actual words—is to obey himself alone. Thus, the source of law in Rousseau's pipe-dreams is man himself. God is excluded totally and replaced by the state. Even the parents that bore the children are shoved aside, because in his utopian concept, the government in actual practice becomes God.
Per Rousseau, the parents are expected to raise the child for the state. Rousseau wrote, "A father owes men to humanity, citizens to the state." He quoted Plato as his authority, as his source. Plato wrote, "The wives of our guardians are to be common ['Share your wife'—that's what he said] and your children are to be common, and no parent is to know his own child, nor any child his parents." That was Rousseau's family ideal. The obliteration of the family is Rousseau's ideal, with the authoritarian, anonymous state replacing them. Thus, in practical fact, the government must be totally in charge of all education, and mass government-operated educational school systems become a necessity. Maybe more on him later; he is really a dilly.