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The utopian/progressivist is often willing to sacrifice his spirit for the purpose of bringing about social change. This is the type of man Voegelin was talking about when he said “human beings who engage in this enterprise move away from the life of the spirit.”

It needs to be emphasized that Voegelin was not just talking about the souls of the men engaged in the enterprise. Every one else's soul is at risk, too, because the progressive doesn't stop with his own soul. He moves onto others' spirits by creating societal conditions that are hostile to religious values and hence anathema to the life of the spirit, engaging in a practice that might be called “vampire magic,” a magic that sucks the spiritual life from others in furtherance of the magicians' earthly goals.

This type of magic might be unintentional, a mere by-product of a one-sided view of humanity that sees no value in the spirit. But it might be intentional, as symbolized by the large number of clergymen who wound up in Nazi concentration camps, like St. Maximilian Kolbe and Lutheran minister Dietrich Bonhoeffer, or in the Soviets' brutal suppression of the Russian Orthodox Church. Voegelin seemed to think it was intentional or at least inherent in the different types of progressivism.

Whether intentional or not, the efforts to solicit or manipulate the human soul for earthly gain is a magical effort that is at the center of our culture.