I imagine that most everyone has heard the term “woke,” a term that refers to a supposed state of enlightenment to the issues of our time. In a way, it is a bit of an amorphous term, and I have seen people of all political and religious stripes employ its usage. However, it is largely seen as a leftist term. In essence, if someone is “woke” then they are hip to the Marxist talking points and will seek to act accordingly.
The term has become so ubiquitous in common parlance that even a conservative Member of Parliament in the Canadian House of Commons has asked the “Woke Minister” himself—Justin Trudeau—to “quit it” with the woke expressions. If you would like to see wokeness in action, then I suggest that—if you have the stomach—you might view this segment from Sky News Australia that is a sort of montage of Trudeau’s own particular brand.
Now, as you might gather from the term, to be “woke” is to suggest that someone is “awake,” as in they have “woken up.” I apologize if it seems like I am explaining remedial grammar points to the educated readership that we have here at Crisis Magazine, but I must warn you; the woke generation does not take kindly to what are considered “outdated” grammatical rules. You never know if a woke individual has stumbled across a publication such as this, perhaps having fallen off the beaten path of scrolling through Huff-Po and the latest Trevor Noah drivel. Thus, it behooves us to clarify basic English expressions for our awakened brethren, as they often woke among us.
I digress. We must ask ourselves, however, is the woke generation truly awake? Or, is this term simply misguided in its application? I propose that to be woke is not to be awake. In fact, we see this dialectic playing out in society especially among the conservative media outlets, be they mainstream or alternative.
For example, you may have heard of the “Great Awakening.” Characters such as Steve Bannon, among other conservative pundits, and even Archbishop Viganò, have employed this term when speaking about world affairs. Also, the anti-lockdown movements often employ the term as a way of indicating that they are “no longer asleep” to government corruption, which has become so obvious under this strange medical totalitarianism.
The term, however, is not a new term, and it has been used in the past, almost exclusively to refer to religious movements. The First Great Awakening was a period of evangelical revival among Protestant groups in 18th century England, and subsequent Awakenings took place in America throughout the succeeding centuries. These movements were all encapsulated by Christian sentiment, even if not Catholic. If it is true that we are in another awakening, as many would suggest, what does this mean?
Well, we cannot say that this movement is strictly Catholic, even if many Catholics have shown affection for it. On the other hand, we cannot say that this movement is a Protestant revival, either, as the sort of Billy Graham Crusade is not taking place. What makes this awakening so unique is that we are living in a time when most communication has gone online, thus “awakened” individuals gather mostly on social media. Furthermore, it is less a movement advocating for a certain set of ideas—like evangelical Protestantism—but instead is more a movement concerned with exposing the lies we have been told for so long.
In a way, I think the trajectory of the current sentiment of awakening might actually prove quite useful. I say this because, ultimately, we want people to know the truth, not just partial truths, or erroneous presentations of the truth. So, as useful as a Protestant revival might be for public morals—think pro-life, pro-marriage, etc.—we cannot say that there has been any lasting positive effect of these non-Catholic movements as Protestantism continues to splinter and decline in most places. Also, since these types of religious movements often take place in emotional settings—think tent revivals—there is a period of “up” followed by a slow decline.
As we speak, anyone with his (sorry woke brethren, I still employ the masculine third person pronoun) ear to the ground can see that a shift is happening. As the Left continues its onslaught of Marxism on the common man, the lies and corruption of our enemies are being revealed at an alarming rate. Libertarians, neo-cons, integralists, trad-Catholics, and classic liberals are strangely uniting in the sharing of damning information about lockdowns, lab leaks, Hunter Biden crime, and so on. Any veneer of trust for most institutions has been removed, and people who are seeking the truth are truly waking up.
It remains to be seen if this awakening will amount to anything of lasting value. But perhaps we can hope that as the lies bubble up to the surface, people who have awakened to the fallen nature of human existence will seek the Truth Himself as the true remedy to a society functioning on the basis of lies.
[Photo Credit: Justin Trudeau (PHIL NOBLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)]