3. The Counter-Revolution Is An Essential Condition for Authentic Progress

February 20, 2020

Does the Counter-Revolution favor progress? Yes, if the progress is authentic. No, if it is the march toward the revolutionary utopia.

One of several crowns that are suspended above the streets for Christmas time at Zona Rosa in Kansas City, Missouri.

In its material aspect, genuine progress consists in the rightful use of the forces of nature according to the law of God, for the service of man. For this reason, the Counter-Revolution makes no pacts with today’s hypertrophied technicalism, with its adoration of novelties, speed, and machines, nor with the deplorable tendency to organize human society mechanistically. These are excesses that Pius XII condemned profoundly and precisely.1

Nor is the material progress of a people the main element of progress in Christian understanding. The latter lies above all in the full development of the powers of the soul and the ascent of mankind toward moral perfection. Thus, a counter-revolutionary conception of progress supposes the prevalence of spiritual values over material considerations. Accordingly, it is proper to the Counter-Revolution to promote, among individuals and the multitudes, a far greater esteem for all that has to do with true religion, philosophy, art, and literature than for what has to do with the good of the body and the exploitation of matter.

Finally, to clearly differentiate between the revolutionary and counter-revolutionary concepts of progress, it is necessary to note that the counter-revolutionary takes into account that the world will always be a valley of tears and a passageway to heaven, while the revolutionary considers that progress should make the earth a paradise in which man lives happily with no thought of eternity.

From the very notion of rightful progress, one can see that the revolutionary process is its contrary.

Thus, the Counter-Revolution is an essential condition for the preservation of the normal development of authentic progress and the defeat of the revolutionary utopia, which has only a facade of progress.

1 Cf. Christmas broadcast, 1957, in Yzermans, The Major Addresses of Pope Pius XII, vol. 2, p. 233.

Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, Revolution and Counter-Revolution(York, Penn.: The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family, and Property, 1993), Part II, Ch. III, pgs. 79-80.


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