Fascists do not worship a God of Love or Beauty or Justice or Compassion or Creativity or Truth. 

“Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, A Sermon Preached at Enfield, July 8, 1741,” by Rev. Jonathan Edwards. Wikimedia Commons via Library of Congress and the New York Public Library.

And certainly not a God who is feminine in any way.  They cannot afford to.  Instead, they worship a God of Control.  A God of Supreme Righteousness and “I told you so.” Who will do anything–make up a law to forbid a president to appoint a supreme court judge for example—and then withdraw that very law when it serves their purposes. 

Fascists worship a Punitive Father God whose favorite virtue is Obedience.  A God of misogyny and power and control.

Truth is not of interest to fascists.  Power is.  The power to control.  Control what?  You name it: A woman’s body—all women’s bodies.  Truth itself. 

Control “inferior” persons such as those who are poor; or gay; or lesbian; or trans; or black (black women will be the first victims of nullifying 49 years of Roe v Wade).  Diversity is no value to them. 

Control the earth also.  Extract from her what you will—the future be damned.  Even control the Earth to the extent of killing all that lives on it.  Climate change?  Environmental protections?  They get in the way, interfere with the real work which is corporate and shareholder profits.

Anti-abortion, anti-trans, and anti-CRT bills are sweeping the country in a trend towards fascism disguised as hypermasculinity. Joy Reid reports on MSNBC.

Control Finance; Media; Supreme Court; the Senate who appoints supreme court judges; CIA; FBI; the Vatican when possible.  There are no limits once one gets on a roll.

Control decision-making everywhere.

One of our two political parties has become a fascist party so destructive that it is willing and eager to upend democracy.

By controlling the truth you might also control history—that is their goal. 

All this constitutes “institutional violence.”  It is a new religion but not that new—Hitler believed in it as did Mussolini and Franco.  (Mussolini defined fascism as “the marriage of corporations and the state.”)  

“Change of Franco government increased the power of Opus Dei July 15, 1965” Archival photo of General Franco’s cabinet on La Hemeroteca del Buitre. Photographer unknown.

And, among Franco’s believers lending it a kind of “religious stamp of approval” was the founder of Opus Dei, Father Escriva and his Opus Dei minions who march in lock step with Franco.  With fascism. 

It’s interesting to me that the family of Pope Francis fled Italy in the 1930’s for Argentina in order to get away from fascism.  I think this explains why the diocese of Los Angeles, the largest diocese in North America, whose bishop is the head of the Bishops Conference and an Opus Dei member, will not have a cardinal overseeing it as long as Pope Francis is pope. Archbishop Gomez will not be promoted.

See Matthew Fox, Naming the Unnameable: 89 Useful and Wonderful Names for God…Including the Unnameable God.

To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.

Banner Image: Book-burning: “When people burn books, it’s because they’re afraid of what’s inside them…”― Marcus Sedgwick, The Monsters We Deserve. Photo by Dan Thompson on Flickr.

Queries for Contemplation

What kind of God do you worship?  Do your God —and you stand up to the gods that fascism worships?  How do you do that?

Recommended Reading

Naming the Unnameable: 89 Wonderful and Useful Names for God …Including the Unnameable God

Too often, notions of God have been used as a means to control and to promote a narrow worldview. In Naming the Unnameable, renowned theologian and author Matthew Fox ignites our imaginations by offering a colorful range of Divine Names gathered from scientists and poets and mystics past and present, inviting us to always begin where true spirituality begins: from experience.
“This book is timely, important and admirably brief; it is also open ended—there are always more names to come, and none can exhaust God’s nature.” -Rupert Sheldrake, PhD, author of Science Set Free and The Presence of the Past

A New Reformation: Creation Spirituality & The Transformation of Christianity

A modern-day theologian’s call for the radical transformation of Christianity that will allow us to move once again from the hollow trappings of organized religion to genuine spirituality. A New Reformation echoes the Reformation initiated by Martin Luther in 1517 and offers a new vision of Christianity that values the Earth, honors the feminine, and respects science and deep ecumenism.
“This is a deep and forceful book….With prophetic insight, Matthew Fox reveals what has corrupted religion in the West and the therapy for its healing.” ~Bruce Chilton, author of Rabbi Jesus: An Intimate Biography

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10 thoughts on “The Religion of Fascism”

  1. Richard Reich-Kuykendall
    Richard Reich-Kuykendall

    Matthew, Today you ask us in our Queries for Contemplation: “What kind of God do you worship?” As you say, I worship a God of Love of Beauty of Justice of Compassion of Creativity of Truth–a God who is feminine (God only knows we’ve had a masculine God for far too long!). And I might add, a God who is Peace-Loving, Joyful, Playful, Passionate and Sensual (a God who gives us senses to enjoy!)
    “Do your God —and you— stand up to the gods that fascism worships? How do you do that?” I stand up to the god’s of fascism by speaking publicly about them, and I write about them… Mussolini defined fascism as “the marriage of corporations and the state” and I call corporations “the Beast” of Revelation that lets no one buy or sell without its mark on your head or your hand (in other words, you do it knowingly and agreeing, or you just go through the motions and do it even though you don’t agree..

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    Jeanette Metler

    The God I’m in relationship with… which is what worship means to me… is the God named today in Mathews reading from his book… “The 99 names of God.” Through this intimacey of relationship… I encounter the spiritual reality of God… incarnate within myself, others and the all and the everything of creation. I stand in this experiential, spiritual reality… doing my best to see… to acknowledge… to accept and respect the diverse expressions, reflections and manifestations of this. The challenge for me, is to also look to do this… in the face of so many distressing disguises… the many masks, one being the religion of facism.

    I think of Aquinas or Eckhart’s words, as I can’t remember which one stated…”I pray that God rid me of God”, to which I would add…”I pray that God rid myself and all of humanity of religion… that we may all receive, experience and encounter the original blessing of relationship… and the spiritual reality of this.”

    Being and living in this spiritual reality and sharing what I experience and encounter within this, with others… through engaging in relationship… daily doing my best… becoming a mirror reflection… all be it an imperfect one… is one small act of revealing the loving, compassionate, merciful face of God, whom I am continually coming to know… from within. This little act may seem very insignificant… however the God I know, assures me this is enough.

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    Damian Maureira

    My God is Our God because God is All in All — A Loving~Living~Wisdom~Truthful~Just~Creative~Beautiful~Joyful~Peaceful~Compassionate~ Mysterious God… with-in us (as conscious eternal co-Creators), Mother Earth and all Her creatures, our multidimensions, our multiverse Cosmos, and God’s ongoing Creation~Evolution in our Loving Diverse Oneness… Immanent and Transcendent….

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    Indeed fundamentalist christianity as well as other extremist fundamental religions are examples of fascism, although they may vehemently deny it! That is the big lie of fascists in denying their own fascism and instead labeling others.

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    Barbara Flaherty

    I am moved by the clarity here, the desire for truth and beauty, the holy Names that encompass us, and the righteous power of good questions!

  6. Avatar

    I always enjoy your meditations and the shedding of light (pun intended) on the world we face today. Being honest, sometimes I’m a little depressed at the end and thought wrapping up your meditations with something related to God, good, creation, silence, life of life, mother nature, always triumphed in the end and therefore reinforces the hope / faith that all will be well. Just my thoughts. Brad

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    The God of Love creation and beauty cannot be the God of Abortions. Women who have had abortions say almost to a person ‘it was the most difficult decision I’ve ever made’. That being the case they knew it was wrong in the eyes of Our loving and creative God.

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    I so appreciate your consistent, powerful. and courageous voice against authoritarianism across the religious and political spectrum. Your inspiring theology and intense moral activism deserve a Nobel Prize.

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    God is Love. God is Love. God is Love.
    God doesn’t hate people for their mistakes, their gender, their nationality, their sexual preferences, or their color.
    That is what I worship.
    Whether I’m charged to “love” my enemies or not, there’s a failure, if it is one, that will either be forgiven and understood or not, but I’m an old woman now and if I were ever going to “love” the people who starved a 2 year old recently, or those who are murdering civilians in Ukraine, or those who are systematically denying human and civil rights to certain people they dislike—If I were ever to have been able to achieve that golden sequel, it would have happened by now and, as the poet said, “You could pray for devils, no doubt, on Judgment Day, but here in the world she would hate them still. . . . ”
    Sorry, God. But if you expect decent people to love those who destroy Good, you needed to pass out some extra grace to people like me, because there is nothing in me that can do it. It’s a river too far for the likes of me.

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