Book Review

Rod Dreher, Live Not By Lies: A Manual for Christian Dissidents (2020)

Author of the 2017 bestseller The Benedictine Option, journalist Rod Dreher sounds a similar note of alarm as he compares the current state of progressive ideology in politics and education combined with consumer capitalism to the surveillance state of Soviet communism. Drawing from compelling and sometimes heart-wrenching interviews with survivors of communism, Dreher warns conservatives to wake up to the threats lurking behind social justice warriors and the engine of higher education driving it.

While Dreher rightly waves the warning flag about progressive ideology, he underestimates the remaining power and influence of those who are not yet conforming to the progressive agenda. The increasing number of voters for President Trump and the Republican wins in Congress in the 2020 elections serve as evidence that the hold of progressivism is not as inevitable as Dreher fears. That being said, his prescriptions for “living not by lies” are timely and practical steps that can be implemented in a variety of contexts. These prescriptions include lovingly refusing to go along with the betrayal of common sense required by the LGBT revolution, building healthy families, participating in religious community, and being willing to embrace suffering for the sake of conscience. Although Dreher’s list is not exhaustive, it provides positive actions that anyone can take.

Have you read the book? If so, feel free to leave your thoughts on it in the comments!

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