Eight centuries ago St. Hildegard experienced a prophetic vision of a period of time similar to our own. She called it the era of the Black Pig, the fourth of five symbolic animals representing successive historical periods of time that precede the Antichrist. The Five Beasts of St. Hildegard: Prophetic Visions of Modern Society lays out a compelling case that these eras have been unfolding in the recent history of Europe and North America. According to Hildegard, they are brief eras with distinct temporal rulers.
In comparing the eras to recent history, three particular years within the twentieth-century make dividing it into four separate historical periods an easy task. 1914, 1945, and 1991 are natural dividing lines marking major social and geopolitical changes in the Western world. There is a general consensus among historians regarding the momentousness of these years and how they serve to divide up the century. Hence, it can be divided into four eras which we choose to begin with the year of the loss of the Papal States in 1870: (1) 1870-1914, (2) 1914-1945, (3) 1945-1991, and (4) 1991-present. All are geopolitically distinct and brief.
In her prophecy, Hildegard distinguishes each era by a specific social evil that she says is dominant throughout the period. As it turns out, her characterizations of the unique social evils belonging to the first four epochs not only correlated to the four eras that made up the twentieth-century, but they also followed each other in the same sequence.
In comparing the present era, which began with the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, to Hildegard’s era of the Black Pig, we find in Hildegard’s description the same social evil that has been worrying many Christians for decades. Unlike the other eras, Hildegard describes this one strictly in terms of the behavior of its secular leaders:
“Another is like a black pig; for this epoch will have leaders who blacken themselves in misery and wallow in the mud of impurity. They will infringe the divine law by fornication and other like evils, and will plot to diverge from the holiness of God’s commands” (Hildegard of Bingen: Scivias, translated by Columba Hart and Jane Bishop. The Abby of Regina Laudis: Benedictine Congregation Regina Laudis of the Strict Observance, Inc. Paulist Press, 1990, Book III, Vis. 11, Chap. ).
Does not infringing the divine law and plotting against God’s commands accurately describe the goals of many Western governments today? America has enacted a myriad of laws that infringe divine law, including requiring Christian business owners to provide birth control to employees, the forcing of states to recognize the validity of so-called homosexual marriage and allow transvestites to have the choice of bathroom to use. If one were to include state and local legislation, the list of laws contradicting the teachings of the Catholic Church is surely in the hundreds and growing.
The madness and eventual consequences of this phenomenon will likely characterize this era in the eyes of future historians. Hildegard further prophesied that the respective social evil will persist from the beginning until the end of the era. In the post immediately preceding this one, Why Social Engineering is Intensifying in the U.S., we analyze the underlying factors that created our current set of leaders and why we can expect more laws that oppress and abase Christians.