IMPORTANT SKYWATCH NOTICE: This series is being offered in the leadup to THE UNVEILING—an urgent Defender Virtual Conference event (May 13) wherein experts from around the world will update the public on swiftly developing Human Enhancement / Hybrid Age advances directly tied to ancient prophecy and a coming seven years of Great Tribulation. Are you aware governments are enacting legislation NOW to protect the rights of the coming Human-Non-Human genetically engineered entities? (Early registration discount here).
In the last entry we raised the issue of a thesis written by Professor S. Jonathon O’Donnell in the Department of Religion and Philosophies at the University of London titled, “Secularizing Demons: Fundamentalist Navigations in Religion and Secularity.” According to the article’s abstract, it was to explore the “anti-transhumanist apocalypticisms” of our day, the central voice behind which was identified as yours truly—“evangelical conspiracist Thomas Horn [and his] milieu [community gathering place]”[i] Throughout the academic paper, O’Donnell simply refers to me and my co-obstructionists as “Horn’s Milieu.”
For any reader of his who is willing to be intellectually shepherded by his leading, O’Donnell achieves this: 1) The Milieu cannot relate to anyone except Christians (or other religious groups), because the concerns we have for this life weren’t brought into the discussion; 2) The Milieu cannot relate to most Christians (or other religious groups), because the theology he punctured and glued together isn’t anything that anyone else can feel confident about (until they look further into our materials…but why would they, when we end up looking so crazy and conspiratorial?). Effectively, O’Donnell has whittled our message down to one that nearly nobody outside The Milieu can understand, and one that those inside The Milieu don’t even completely agree with due to the inaccuracies of (or gaping holes within) his theological interpretation.
Gratitude for his reasonably professional treatment aside (he never directly came across as aggressive), the conclusions he made were often inaccurately represented, and some of them—such as the deductions he postulated regarding the motives behind our work—also rely on more than his limitedly secular and personal opinions if we are to land at a true and balanced assessment. The bias (or grand assumptions, at the very least) on his end is immediately clear.
Motive is a sticky, yet necessary, detail to address anytime someone dedicates his or her attention to the lurking beasts under glistening surfaces. Perhaps one of the most important questions one could ever ask when listening to someone labeled a “conspiritist” is: “What’s motivating him [or her] to say/report these things?” If the answer to that question produces suspicion about a person’s purpose or character, then that person’s claims are equally suspect of being outright false, or at the least, predisposed. In the world of science, this is especially important, because if someone releases information while driven by an agenda, it could mislead a lot of people who believe scientific data to always represent irrefutable fact. (As any learned personality of the scientific community will tell you, scientific data is just data—numbers, chemical reactions, codes, and so on, often statistical—that supports other theories and hypotheses, which doesn’t solidly prove anything until enough testing has been done in a specific area to produce the concrete facts. However, many conspiritists in the past [unrelated to The Milieu] have shared “data” as if it were already “facts” or “proof,” but by obscuring the rest of the contributing data that possibly leads to another outcome, they’re only sharing one part of the big picture, and their deductions of the situation are misleading.) Therefore, because of how important pure integrity is as it relates to agenda, the agenda and motives that The Milieu holds most important as we strive to alert the world of the dangers within the sphere of transhumanism must be herein openly admitted.
The confession you will read in this subsection is the truth, and nothing but the truth.
First of all, O’Donnell is probably correct toward the beginning of his article, when he declares that there has been a sharp increase in “conspiratorial” subcultures—and the leaders therein—who have used transhumanism as a platform to rejuvenate interest in religion. He includes myself and my Milieu contemporaries at the center of that conclusion, which is incorrect, if I might speak for myself and those associates I work with daily (and whose personal motives I am far more familiar with than O’Donnell). Several times throughout the piece, he describes these leaders (us) as “reactive” to the “marginalization” or “obsolescence” (the state of becoming obsolete) of religion,[ii] which, put more simply, suggests that our goal in raising awareness about transhumanism is some crude attempt at “rescuing Christianity” (my words, not his) in an increasingly secularized era: If religion is becoming obsolete in the Western, secularized world, then religious men and women must fight to have it restored—and what better way to accomplish this than to…rail against transhumanism?
ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW VIDEO
WHY IS “THE UNVEILING” CONSIDERED SO IMPORTANT THAT OVER 2-DOZEN INTERNATIONALLY RECOGNIZED EXPERTS ARE GATHERING TO DISCLOSE DEVELOPMENTS TIED TO THE END TIMES!?
My logic radar just went silent. Give me a second to catch up…
My most immediate response to this is to gently inform my audience (O’Donnell included, if that is the case) that I don’t think religion needs saving. As long as “God is on the throne and prayer changes things”—as my late friend Noah Hutchings of Southwest Radio Church always used to say—then “religion” (or, perhaps more accurately, the Gospel of Christ as it is spread all over the world) isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, because, to quote an ancient adage of the Church: “God is in control.” And even if “rescuing religion/Christianity” was what drove me, I’m intelligent enough to know that a feat such as that would not be accomplished by a man standing on an “anti-transhumanism platform.”
I understand where he’s coming from with this assumption, but it is only an assumption. It’s only logical (and obvious) that the frightening aspects of transhumanism appeals to the fragility of humanity, and the fragility of humanity is an excellent segue point from which to introduce concerns regarding what happens when human life expires (concepts of the afterlife), which is a crucial focus of many religions, including Christianity. Likewise, Christianity naturally opposes from many angles the alteration of God’s original human design in the Garden of Eden, so a minister wishing to put his most promising, Gospel-spreading foot forward in a conversation with an unbelieving world might be motivated by raising awareness in an area that connects believers and nonbelievers alike as it pertains to our mutual, human fragility: Since we are all human, we at least have that one thing in common regardless of who believes in Scripture, and if there is a potential destruction, that presents a starting point of union for all who are concerned and involved. If we are in union toward a common, preventative goal, then we have grounds to more openly share personal convictions, which is a witnessing opportunity if there ever was one!
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Dr. Thomas Horn and Jimmy Evans Explain The Greatest Threat Transhumanism Poses To Humanity On Daystar
Using this linear breakdown as only one example, we can see a glimmer of the logic behind how an attack on secularized society might revitalize religion, if the attackers are successful…but I honestly don’t think they ever would be, because that’s not how it works. One single Christian sermon on the workings of God during periods of societal “religious rejuvenation” would make it clear to anyone that true spiritual revivals—known in history as the Great Awakenings, affecting entire towns, cities, states, and countries—only occur when the name of Jesus Christ is preached with passion and love…not when religion gets into a boxing ring with science. That is not to say that ministries built around responding to science aren’t essential. The answers they provide are crucial in today’s world, and The Milieu is no exception to that rule. It is to say, however, that no group of evangelical “conspiritists” are going to rejuvenate Christianity throughout the entire secularized West by throwing transhumanism under the bus.
First of all, one might take this theoretical assumption of O’Donnell’s about The Milieu’s motives as a compliment and unabashedly respond: “Why not? What ministers in our position would be anything less than thrilled to be associated to a fresh and universal form of preaching the Word?” And sure, we strive to be “fishers of men” the same as any other ministers, so if drawing the unsaved to Christ through a platform called “the transhumanism debate” was our sole motive, there really wouldn’t be any shame in that.
At its core, “seeing souls meet Jesus” is not the same motive as the generic “rejuvenation of archaic religion”—and I assure you, The Milieu does not believe that Christianity is threatened by the likes of science. When the end-game is seeing more precious souls enter the Priesthood of the Saints and inherit eternity, then by golly, call us “conspiritists for the Lord” if the outcome will ultimately be to hear, “Well done, my good and faithful servant[s].”
On that note, Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 9:19–23 state:
For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more. And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law; To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law. To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.
Depending on how one wants to interpret this verse, it might be said that, “To them that are involved in the transhumanism discussion, The Milieu became transhumanism discussers…that we might by all means save some…for the Gospel’s sake.” So if there are Christian ministers or counselors out there today with this precise approach, more power to you!
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FLASHBACK: Dr. Thomas Horn Discusses Prophetic Implications Of Transhumanism At Strategic Perspectives Conference
Again: There would be no shame in this as a sole motive for The Milieu’s ministry endeavors. Nor is this the mere fight against the marginalization of religion in a secular society. O’Donnell does not present himself as any kind of expert on “soul winning for Christ,” so I can clearly see he’s confusing these endeavors (reaching unsaved individuals versus societal reformation), possibly because he hasn’t personally come to understand Christ or His Great Commission. Yet, if a person researches religion in society at the depth that those of us in The Milieu have, it’s clear that societal religion can frequently paint (and historically has painted) little more than a social club of smiles, potlucks, and handshakes. It doesn’t produce a lasting and world-changing Great Awakening, because “societal religion” is never the same as a “personal relationship with Christ.” Also, people potentially giving their heart to the Lord because they are afraid of what transhumanism threatens to destroy are doing so out of fear, and that is not a conversion that promises any longevity or sincerity—so why would The Milieu be after such a superficial goal? (As far as what “religious” [read: God-fearing] motives we do have behind our work, I will address that shortly.)
But as we mentioned earlier, there is a humanitarian outlook to all of this: Let us not assume—as O’Donnell has—that our motives aren’t also to shed light on what is, at least for the duration of this earthly life, a common-sense issue!—once again regardless of religion, Christianity, or anyone’s personal “higher power” belief systems. If a busload of people were parked on train tracks and the warning blare of the train’s whistle hollered out from around the corner, I (and anyone in The Milieu) would run like a madman to get that bus off the tracks or assist in evacuating the people out of harm’s way prior to collision. I wouldn’t stand there and use the tracks as my “platform” to suddenly attempt a mass crisis conversion, preach a sermon, or rejuvenate interest in religion. In a state of catastrophic emergency, I’m going to jump into “go mode” to help as many as I can stay out of harm’s way, and nothing about that is unique to “Tom Horn,” “The Milieu,” or any agenda other than to ensure—as anyone would—that people are spared from tragedy. If today’s public mainstream is blindly parked on the train tracks of misinformation regarding transhumanistic dabbling (as I believe to be the case) while the steam engine of irreversible genetic alterations is blaring a stone’s throw from shifting all of humanity into a devastating biological warfare, I don’t have to be solely motivated by preaching sermons or “rescuing obsolete religions” to stop and shout for their attention.
Regardless of religion, or the “rejuvenation” thereof, warning others of danger is what any man in my well-researched position would—and should—do for the good of humanity’s future.
Another repetitious point of reflection about The Milieu’s motives that O’Donnell visits deeply (and in a way that suggests it to be an innate fallacy in his world of science) is our tendency to “entangle” our own bio-conservative concerns on one hand with theological concepts and our perspectives of increased Western secularism on the other.[iii] As far as any attempt to reverse Western secularism: Again, God is on the throne and no man in a suit on a transhumanism platform is going to achieve this. As far as my “entangling” theology with the scientific trends that excite the public toward hidden disaster, I have no intention of refuting this, and I stand guilty as charged. It’s what I am supposed to do.
But it’s the “why” here that matters more than the “what” accusation. Most obviously, it’s what any informed Christian is obligated to do, since “theological concepts” (i.e., the study of God’s nature, His Word, His will, and by extension the “dos” and “don’ts” of our earthly existence) are at the root of everything we believe and every decision we make. If a person doesn’t believe in God, then it would be understandable why he or she would consider it a natural fallacy to “entangle” concerns of science and theology together, because science is science and religion is religion: Complications arise when the two convictions clash, so many believe it would be simpler and perhaps more professional if I structured my materials to address only what is biologically relevant (for the good of human life on earth) and not what I perceive to be spiritual (eternal repercussions of current transhumanistic developments and trends).
Yet still, having been in this line of work as long as we have while our words have been broadcast to now millions of listeners, standing guilty for “entangling” science and theology should—if the responder is willing to see what’s in front of him—openly link The Milieu to a motive that cannot be limited to any box called “rescuing Christianity” or “reversing Western secularization.” To once again strike the issue at its core, it’s more accurately about preserving the integrity of, and giving respect to, Creation as God designed it.
Whereas I completely respect the notion that religion and science are often two separate convictions, as a believer, there is no unhinging one from the other as it relates to the origin and preservation of humankind as God, Himself, created it to be. I believe God is the ultimate scientist, the First Scientist actually (as the Creator of the universe would naturally be), and therefore, I also believe that all scientific discovery is merely a reflection and a testimony of what “religion” (translation: God the Creator) initiated in the first place. It is to that authentic Creation Order I believe we owe the utmost reverence and respect. To dabble with the First Scientist’s beautiful and artistic human DNA design to the point that His original race no longer resembles itself—with the idea that we are “improving” what was already there—is no less offensive than a would-be painter attempting to “improve” a Picasso masterpiece by smearing over the original work with a stick figure because it’s “prettier.”
Those who call themselves believers likely cannot—and probably should not—discuss man’s scientific practices and the potential dangers therein without ultimately respecting the First Scientist’s wishes. If I were face to face with an audience of one, I could carry on (and in the past have carried on) a conversation about the pros and cons of transhumanism without mentioning my Christian beliefs and “entangling” science and theology. But when it comes to my books, television and radio appearances, documentaries, etc.—in other words, my ministry; that arena God called me to respond to—it would be outright negligence for me to discuss the possible threats transhumanism poses to humanity without “entangling” those concepts with theology…and I can’t see any justification for an apology.
At least as far as this accusation of O’Donnell is concerned, it should never be considered a fallacy to insert personal conviction (religious, theological, or otherwise) into a discussion about the future of human life. Scientific “facts” aside, it shouldn’t be seen as a weakness, but a strength, to approach these matters with care and concern as they relate to each person’s belief in something higher than ourselves. All scientists do the same thing each time they hover over a petri dish with thoughts of how this next experiment will positively or negatively affect their family/community, but because their personal convictions don’t always inherently relate to respecting a divine Creation order or an afterlife, their concerns are justifiable…and I become the “religious conspiritist” who “entangles” science and theology.
O’Donnell’s recapitulation of my own motives, as well as those in The Milieu, were not always inaccurate, but they were always subject to a bias that I can only assume to be birthed through a staunchly secular background, and by extension, they were summarized incompletely and with a misinforming slant. In a way, he ironically collected his own “data” about what drives us to act, and then dangerously skirted the edge of calling it “fact”—an error that is well associated to people who eventually earn the title “conspiritists.” As a conclusion to this subsection, let me summarize more simply the motives of The Milieu: 1) to respect God first and foremost, as the First Scientist and therefore chief authority of His own design; 2) to engage the ethics in any arena where I see a threat posed to the health of mankind’s future; 3) to uncover what Scripture has to say about a subject that few others in the Church are addressing, so that those whose faith might be affected by these subjects have a biblical perspective to consider; and finally, 4) to shed light on the spiritual implications of these earthly developments.
NEXT: Fundamentals of The Milieu
[i] S. Jonathon O’Donnell, “Secularizing Demons: Fundamentalist Navigations in Religion and Secularity,” abstract, Zygon: Journal of Religion and Science, issue titled Nuclear Waste, Conspiracies, and E-Meters: Remarkable Religion and Technology (Vol. 51, No. 3, September 2016), 640.
[ii] The first instance of this appears on: S. Jonathon O’Donnell, “Secularizing Demons,” 642.