Can Western Civilization survive?

Today, Western Civilization appears to have lost its identity, lost its soul.  It is under constant attack from many quarters.  By “western civilization”, we mean those ideas, values and traditions that have come down to us through history from ancient Greece and Rome and the rest of Europe and have been greatly shaped or influenced by Christianity.

Perhaps, our question could be rephrased as:  Can Western Civilization survive its current crisis of identity?  The crisis, the pressing existential drama, seems to be inexorably progressing towards a climax.

 

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morality: ends and means

The anniversary of the Allied firebombing of Dresden, Germany in 1945 prompts us to post these thoughts on means and ends.

If the desired objective to be achieved through action is morally licit, the means employed to achieve that end must also be morally licit.  In other words, the ends do not justify the means.

 

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atheism and science

“There is no God.” – is a statement of faith, not of science.  Really, the statement is an assertion.

People who self identify as atheists often think that science supports their chosen position or is “on their side”.  True, many in the scientific community are atheists and others say they are agnostic.  And, that is the danger.  Those people of science have much prestige and command much respect in today’s world.  Yet, science has its limitations.  (Gasp)  Yes, it really does have limitations albeit you rarely hear such talk from those in science.

 

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the emasculation of the white male

Such a male, being afraid of potentially offending others, is himself offensive in his cowardice.

Perhaps we ought not be surprised by the presence in our societies of so many men who are in their behavior nearly apologetic (or ashamed?) about being male.  The attacks on boys in the school systems of Western countries combined with the aggressive feminism, socialism, multiculturalism and political correctness in the culture these past few decades have taken a heavy toll on males.  I think white males have been more susceptible to harm than non-white males these past few decades as so-called “white privilege” has come under greater attack.

 

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technology cannot save us from ourselves

These days we take rapid scientific and technological progress as a given in modern life.  As we grow more and more dependent upon modern gadgetry in almost all aspects of our lives, we believe – or at least assume – that technology will save us from any challenges or threats that may come.  Are we overlooking a serious risk or threat from within as we place so much confidence in our growing scientific knowledge and technical abilities?

 

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individual actions and collective effects

Individual actions do have a cumulative or collective effect on society.  This may seem rather obvious, yet it is often overlooked or ignored in the discussions of the day on many, diverse (and contentious) issues.

We have in Western societies normalized so much that is destructive to both individuals and to the larger society since the 1960s.  Promiscuous and perverted sexuality, and recreational drug use are 2 examples.  Both of these serve to harm families and that makes for a less harmonious society.  Ego-centric, self-absorbed individuals have contributed to many of the societal ills we face today.  Many groups clamor loudly for “rights”.  But, on closer inspection, we see that these so-called rights mean merely being able to do whatever these folks want to do for any reason or for no reason.  And, no, licentiousness is not true freedom.  True personal freedom requires the acceptance of personal responsibility.

 

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the ossuary under Paris

An interesting historical item about Paris: beneath the city lies the world’s largest ossuary (a place or receptacle for the bones of the dead).  We only came across this fact quite recently and found it interesting.  Paris cemeteries were emptied of their dead beginning in the 1780s, and their bones were interred in the extensive tunnel system (former limestone mines and quarries) that lies beneath the city’s streets.  Estimates range from 6 to 7 million individuals have had their bones placed in this tunnel network.  We had wondered why in photos of Paris we do not see many tall buildings.  The presence of these extensive tunnels 60 feet below the surface prevents the large, heavy and deep foundations needed for modern sky scrapers.

Below the streets of modern Paris, every day is the day of the dead.

 

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