14 episodes

A podcast, newsletter, and publication for followers of The Way (and friendly haters) about how to live faithfully in the age of democratic destruction, ecological collapse, and economic irrelevance.

jaredbrock.substack.com

Future Faith Jared Brock

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 5.0 • 2 Ratings

A podcast, newsletter, and publication for followers of The Way (and friendly haters) about how to live faithfully in the age of democratic destruction, ecological collapse, and economic irrelevance.

jaredbrock.substack.com

    Interview: Mark Sayers on China, Crypto, Politics, the Future, and the Church

    Interview: Mark Sayers on China, Crypto, Politics, the Future, and the Church

    Hi family,

    We’re shaking things up on Future Faith today— I’m hosting an interview with Melbourne’s Mark Sayers, author of a half-dozen books and partner-in-crime with John Mark Comer on the This Cultural Moment podcast.

    Grab a coffee or tea and find an hour to listen to where culture and the church are likely headed. (You can also watch the video version below.)

    If you’d like to win a free copy of Mark’s newest book, click enter here.

    Since this is such an important conversation, please consider forwarding this email to the leaders in your life.

    And if you’re new to Future Faith, welcome! Subscriptions are free:

    Watch on Youtube:

    Get full access to Future Faith at jaredbrock.substack.com/subscribe

    • 1 hr 10 min
    How Corporations Kill Communities

    How Corporations Kill Communities

    Every Sunday morning before church for several years, my friends and I used to gather at Locke Street Bakery on Locke Street in Hamilton.

    The bagels were amazing.

    Literally handmade.

    Boiled and fire-baked right before our eyes.

    Slathered with homemade cream cheese, smoked salmon, the works.

    Served by women in their forties and fifties who we knew by name.

    LSB was a blue-collar institution in a run-down neighborhood, and for decades it faithfully served its equally faithful clientele.

    LSB was so good, in fact, that it started attracting other local businesses.

    A funky hair salon opened across the street.

    A butcher shop did the same.

    A bookshop.

    A florist.

    And then, one day — once all the signs suggested this neighborhood was about to pop — Starbucks moved into the neighborhood.

    It was all downhill from there.

    Corporations can’t create culture.

    Corporations aren’t real.

    They’re just legal fictions; anti-human institutions that live forever, have more rights than people, and exist solely to extract wealth from employees, suppliers, consumers, and taxpayers.

    Corporations can’t and don’t create culture because culture is natural, organic, biological, creative.

    It’s why people use Airbnb/steal real family homes instead of staying at hotels. Marriott can’t fake home.

    It’s why all the top restaurants in the world aren’t chains. Real human chefs surprise and delight patrons with new and living flavors. McDonald’s and Starbucks, on the other hand, are continually “innovating,” but it all tastes roughly the same because the bottom line goal isn’t creative expression, it’s profit.

    If you’ve ever been to a corporate “community event” or witnessed a corporate-created “grassroots campaign,” you know exactly what I mean. Everything’s a bit sanitized and clean and proper and nice and… off.

    That’s because corporations aren’t relational — they’re transactional.

    They can’t give freely and creatively.

    Their legal fiduciary reason for existence is to take.

    And human beings can smell it from a mile away.

    The Corporate Colonization Cycle

    Because corporations can’t create culture, they have to play succubus to a living host, hoovering resources out of fledgling local ecosystems.

    To put it another way, corporations have to find real culture creators who are building meaningful neighborhoods, and then slip in their stores to get in on the action before the culture-creators get pushed out and move elsewhere.

    Unlike one-of-a-kind local businesses that keep 100% of their profits spinning in their neighborhood and attract outside money, multinationals do the opposite: They siphon money from local communities to faraway elite shareholders, and make everywhere so similar and boring that it drives people away from once-thriving pockets of real culture.

    In the case of Starbucks and hundreds of other multinational monster brands, they literally have teams of people who research up-and-coming areas to determine the best place to install their wealth-extracting hoses.

    The corporate colonization cycle happens all over the world:

    Ernest Hemingway shops at a bookstore, and suddenly Shakespeare and Co. is a lifeless global brand.

    Mennonites create St. Jacob’s Farmer’s Market, then Walmart builds just feet across the county line to benefit from all the visitors.

    A trunkmaker named Louis Vuitton crafted high-quality bags, now a hyper-capitalist billionaire leverages the name to buy out seventy competitor brands.

    Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre chatted philosophy at a run-down restaurant, now Café de Flores is overrun by celebrities and narcissistic Instagramers.

    Two centuries ago, Vincent Van Gogh used a certain sketchbook made of moleskin, and in 1997 an Italian papermaker created an overpriced knock-off version that’s now owned by a Belgian glass repair company.

    The corporate colonization cycle is simple and heartbreaking:

    People create culture

    • 8 min
    "You Will Own Nothing And Be Happy" Is Just Feudalism 2.0

    "You Will Own Nothing And Be Happy" Is Just Feudalism 2.0

    The elites hate you.

    It’s not personal.

    They just do.

    Some think the elites are just indifferent to us, but they aren’t. The words “love” and “hate” are not merely theoretical notions — they are verbs.

    Elites hated your ancestors, too.

    Whether your ancestors were African slaves in the New World (especially in Brazil), or serfs under the British aristocracy, or peasants under the Russian Tsars, or slaves under the Chinese dynasties, elites have extracted time and wealth from your family since before recorded history.

    Until essentially the end of World War I, elites owned everything.

    Take, for instance, the East India Company. A staff of 35 people controlled the fate of more than 100 million Indians from a five-window office in London.

    Lack of ownership for the masses — that was the problem. (Well, you know, aside from the fact that the heart is desperately wicked, as Jeremiah points out.)

    Whenever elites own everything, everyone else is shackled to horrible jobs just to survive, while the elites live in obscene luxury with no thought to the misery and suffering of the masses.

    Sound familiar?

    In the wake of the global pandemic, today’s elites are taking back the planet they believe rightfully belongs to them, and putting the rest of us back where they believe we belong:

    In economic chains.

    The Great Reset

    In January 2021, the hyper-elitist World Economic Forum — hosted by Prince Charles and sponsored by glowing anti-democratic monopolists including Blackrock and JPMorgan — held its 50th annual meeting from the Alpine slopes of Davos, Switzerland.

    The theme was The Great Reset, a proposal to rebuild the economy “sustainably” in the wake of COVID-19.

    Right.

    Even billionaire-obsessed Forbes Magazine had to admit their agenda was “another example of wealthy, powerful elites salving their consciences with faux efforts to help the masses, and in the process make themselves even wealthier and more powerful.”

    In the WEF video 8 Predictions For The World In 2030, the very first prediction is:

    “You’ll own nothing. And you’ll be happy.”

    As the WEF explained on its website:

    [By 2030] all products will have become services. “I don’t own anything. I don’t own a car. I don’t own a house. I don’t own any appliances or any clothes.” Shopping is a distant memory in the city of 2030, whose inhabitants have cracked clean energy and borrow what they need on demand. It sounds utopian, until she mentions that her every move is tracked and outside the city live swathes of discontents, the ultimate depiction of a society split in two.

    Notice the implicit threat towards the end?

    Play ball or suffer.

    And if the elites have their way, you won’t own your own underwear in nine years or less.

    Slavery by another name

    This, of course, begs the question:

    If we won’t own anything… who will?

    The answer is obvious: The elites will.

    And they’ll rent it back to us for top dollar.

    Whatever “the market” can bear.

    But obviously, what the market can bear and what the people can bear are two different things entirely.

    Interestingly, a societal structure in which the vast majority own nothing and have to work for elites just to stay alive already has a name:

    It’s called feudalism.

    Feudalism 2.0

    Have you noticed that the economy is rapidly shape-shifting?

    During the pandemic, billionaires added more than $5.5 trillion to their net worth.

    If you chart the trajectory and do the math, you’ll discover elites will control the entire global economy within our lifetime.

    Sadly, the goal of today’s elites is the same as their ancestors:

    To enslave the world in order to extract the maximum amount of time and wealth from every living being.

    Ownership matters

    Without ownership, America’s 115,656,681 renters are at the whims of cruel land-lorders and Airbnb takeovers.

    Without ownership, all of Tesla’s 70,000 employees miss out on their $14 million stake

    • 10 min
    The World Needs Far Less Facebook, Not More by a Different Name

    The World Needs Far Less Facebook, Not More by a Different Name

    Last week, someone offered to pay me $500 to write a short Medium article about their new NFT startup.

    That’s a lot of money for someone with a brand new baby at home.

    The company “sends” its “community” on a different digital “travel experience” each month.

    One month everyone will digitally attend Coachella or Burning Man, another time they’ll go to the Superbowl or the NBA Finals.

    It’s a really cool idea, until you think about it for like four seconds.

    I wrote back:

    “Dear [so and so]. Sorry to say I can’t support your project. It’s anti-human. If you’ve read much of my blog, you know that I’m deeply pro-human. Biological. Offline. Together. [Your company] separates people. It keeps them from going on real adventures to real places to spend real offline time with real people. My post-college volunteering trip through Central America changed my life and made me friends for life. [Your company] is the opposite of what human beings need. I hope you’ll seriously re-think this business.”

    It was the easiest $500 I’ve never made.

    New name, same game

    Facebook is changing its name to Meta Platforms Inc.

    It’s stupid, I know.

    But then again, so is wasting 2.39 years of waking life on Facebook, so can the average user really judge them?

    As most of my long-time readers know, I’m not a fan of the highly-addictive, extremist-breeding, time-devouring, money-gobbling, democracy-smashing, depression-inducing, hatred-boosting sludgefest that is Facebook.

    Now, in an attempt to distance Facebook from its endless crimes and scandals, kid billionaire/Sith lord Mark Zuckerberg has decided that burning 76,450,684 years of human life each year in two dimensions is no longer enough.

    No, in his profit-focused mind, it’s time for Facebook’s 1.908 billion daily active users to enter the Metaverse — in other words, he wants to further separate us from each other, but this time, in virtual reality.

    In order to create “connection.”

    In order words, the lie that built Facebook is about to go exponential.

    The trillion-dollar vision

    Facebook is built on an extremely simple and profound promise:

    That if we will all spend more time alone staring at a screen, freely hand over our identities, and let an algorithm change our beliefs and behaviors, Facebook will deliver connection.

    And guess what?

    Facebook delivered.

    Extremely well:

    Old classmates who’d lost touch (for a reason) suddenly knew what each other were up to.

    Grandparents got to see their faraway grandbabies.

    Former colleagues got to argue about who stole the election from whom.

    During lockdown, everyone got to see how bored everyone else was.

    Oh, and millions of couples had affairs, with 20% of divorce cases now involving Facebook.

    So yes, we connected.

    But there’s a fundamental problem with Facebook’s unique selling proposition:

    There’s a massive difference between connection and communion.

    Facebook promises connection and hopes we won’t realize that connection isn’t actually what we want, need, or crave.

    In the same way that Americans conflate autonomy with freedom, Mark Zuckerberg conflates connection with communion.

    Humans don’t “connect.”

    We aren’t USB keys.
    We aren’t wifi signals.
    We aren’t prongs that plug into outlets.

    Machines connect.

    Humans commune.

    Communion

    I don’t know anyone who’s logged off of Facebook feeling euphoric, content, or fulfilled.

    Statistically speaking, most users log off either more depressed or more enraged.

    Facebook is like McDonald’s — it’s temporarily satisfying because of the saccharine sugar hit, but it ultimately leaves you hungry within hours, craving another hit.

    Communion, on the other hand, is different.

    When people meet face to face, magic happens.

    We smell each other. 
    Hear each other without compression. 
    We breathe in each other’s pheromones. 
    Our breathing syncs. 
    Our heart rates rise.
    Our faces flush.
    We really communi

    • 10 min
    10 Signs America Is Headed for Certain Collapse

    10 Signs America Is Headed for Certain Collapse

    Hello brothers and sisters, welcome to Future Faith, a podcast, newsletter, and publication about living faithfully in an age of democratic destruction, ecological collapse, and economic irrelevance, available for free on Substack, Spotify, and Apple Podcasts. I’m your host, Jared Brock, and today we’re going to discuss ten signs that America is headed for certain collapse.

    Superpowers aren’t impressive.

    Italy, Greece, Ethiopia, Egypt, Britain, Spain, Portugal; they’ve all ruled the world for a time before sliding back to just regular-ol’-nation status.

    Now it’s America’s turn.

    The United States is going to collapse.

    This isn’t a fear-mongering statement.

    Just a fact.

    Everyone knows it.

    Whether in five years or fifty, the days of America-as-global-superpower are numbered.

    In the same way that Rome pulled back its troops from Alexandria in Egypt and the Scottish borders in Britain, the American military-industrial complex will continue the work started in Afghanistan and eventually withdraw its 800 global military bases in order to make a last-ditch effort to enslave its own people in a soft-totalitarian panopticon surveillance state.

    And then it will collapse.

    Diehard nationalists insist it could never happen, but the signs of American collapse are obvious:

    1. Wealth inequality

    American income inequality is growing, too.

    Higher than the Roman Empire’s, in fact.

    The stats on wealth inequality are crazy. Please read them all.

    Nevermind the Gilded Age of corporate tyrants like Vanderbilt and Carnegie and Rockefeller — today’s billionaires control more wealth and political power than the monopolists of the past could ever have dreamed.

    Christians, of course, live by a different economic policy: From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.

    And while extreme right-wingers are quick to shout “Communism! Socialism!” they fail to realize we’re not advocating central ownership or central control of the economy. That’s what billionaires are working on.

    2. Debt

    The numbers are staggering:

    America has nearly $29 trillion in federal debt.

    Total consumer debt sits at $14.9 trillion.

    Half a million American families are systemically forced into bankruptcy every year.

    Don’t listen to those nutty Modern Monetary Theory boosters who think we can pile up debt forever and it will never destroy our society.

    The bell will toll, and it will toll for us.

    Don’t get me wrong, the MMTers are technically right — we can print money forever. But every unbacked printed dollar erodes trust and purchasing power.

    When society is built on a literal lie, it’s only a matter of time before it falls.

    Because only the truth can set us free.

    3. Economic Instability

    Because of how hyper-elites have structured the economy, we’re stuck with permanent economic instability — insane asset bubbles, followed by massive crashes that hurt those who a.) didn’t benefit in the good times, and b.) suffer most in the bad times.

    While it’s never occurred to the corporations who control our countries, people want to live in economically stable places.

    Because America refuses to deliver on true, long-term economic stability for the majority, it’s no wonder we’re currently seeing a national strike, and why many of us with the power to do so have already moved overseas.

    4. Homeownership in Crisis

    Rentership, too.

    I’ve been sounding the alarm on this one for a while — people have no idea the tidal wave that’s about to shatter the American middle class once and for all.

    House prices are going to $10 million in our lifetime, and if we don’t ban for-profit residential real estate investment and overthrow the corrupt zoning boards that keep young families from building homes they can afford, we will see a houselessness crisis never witnessed before in human history. 

    There is a massive opportunity for the real-estate-rich Western church to become a global l

    • 14 min
    Are You Ready To Become a Monk?

    Are You Ready To Become a Monk?

    Welcome to Future Faith, a podcast, newsletter, and publication about living faithfully in an age of democratic destruction, ecological collapse, and economic irrelevance, available for free on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and Substack:

    Every morning I go on a walk past a river, beside a centuries-old working millpond, into a graveyard and apple-laden church ground, and through the ruins of a twelfth-century abbey.

    If you walk around my village, you’ll see dozens of houses that are made of the exact same stones as the former abbey.

    There’s a reason for this: When Henry VIII dissolved all the monasteries and started his own church in order to self-bless his murder of innocent women, locals in my village stole the monastery’s rocks.

    The faded tourist sign says that the locals treated the monastery as a “convenient quarry.”

    A convenient quarry.

    That’s Christianity vs. Secularism in a nutshell, isn’t it?

    Because it’s inherently consumerist, post-modernity loves to harvest what Christians first cultivated:

    Hospitals

    Universities

    Human rights

    Universal basic income

    Secularism wants the kingdom without the king, the light without the power, the cathedral without the cornerstone.

    Monasteries

    What do you picture when you hear the word “monk?”

    Old men in black robes?
    Old women in white robes?

    Why not a young bearded brewer who brews beer for the glory of God?
    Why not a stay-at-home dad who adores children and wants to adopt a dozen orphans?
    Why not a working mom who erects houses for the benefit of people who would never qualify for a mortgage?

    What do you picture when you hear the word “monastery?”

    A rotting stone building, utterly detached from the world?

    Why not a vibrant house, street, neighborhood, village, or city?

    When I hear the word “monastery,” I envision an estate.

    When Henry VIII dissolved the monasteries, he sold their buildings and land to whichever local elite offered the most cash.

    This allowed the British aristocracy to amass vast estates, with thousands of those plundered monasteries still owned by those same families to this day. (There are 144 estates over 10,000 acres in Scotland alone.)

    Michelle and I have visited dozens of estates on various outings around the UK:

    Chatsworth (1,822 acres, down from 200,000) invented the banana we all know and love.

    Buccleuch (217,000 acres) raises 19,670 sheep, 700 cattle, 32,000 hens, and 117 red deer hinds.

    Atholl (124,000 acres) hosts weddings and functions, has a trailer park, and does castle tours.

    Highclere (5,000 acres) shot to fame as the shooting location for Downton Abbey.

    When I picture a modern monastery, I picture a not-for-profit sustainable estate — studded with dozens of villages and hundreds of people — being run by kingdom principles for kingdom purposes.

    The kingdom economy

    The poor will always be among us because the rich will always be above us.

    But not in the Acts 4 church, where there were “no needy people among them.”

    And not in today’s monasteries, either.

    For nearly 1,700 years, Christian monks and nuns have practiced Universal Basic Income.

    In my travels, I’ve visited monasteries in Greece, Italy, Spain, England, Scotland, and elsewhere. I’ve been to many of the great foundations, including Monte Cassino, Assisi, Subiaco, etc. Monasteries are the last place in Christendom that still practice koinonia, the ancient and subversive Acts 2 practice that radically set apart the early church from the rest of society.

    Koinonia is often translated as “community” or “fellowship,” but both are really terrible translations. “Brotherhood” and “communion” come closer, but the best description of koinonia might be “non-political spiritual communism.”

    From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.

    This isn’t forced or coerced secularist state-implemented communism. We know that doesn’t work.

    This is a Holy Spirit-led sharing of life. 

    It

    • 18 min

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