Why Western civilization matters

Tags

, , , , , ,

Greece, Athens, Acropolis, The Caryatids on the Erecheion. (Photo by: Eye Ubiquitous/UIG via Getty Images)

What is Western civilization? First, there’s the Western part, as in Western Europe. That’s a bit tricky, because Western civilization isn’t really Celtic druids or even Vikings, Western European though they are, but it is ancient Greeks, even though they’re Eastern. Then there’s the civilization part, as in high culture. That’s tricky, too, because Western civilization, now so many centuries into it, incorporates a number of competing and contradictory cultures. It’s classical antiquity, Christendom, the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, and the Industrial Revolution, taking us across the spectrum of paganism, Christianity, and atheism. Why does it matter? Continue reading

Advertisements

Boy parts and girl parts

Tags

,

vignette1_portrait_diptyque_dun_couple_bourgeois_probablemen.jpgMen and women are different. The liberal bastions of psychology and sociology have documented it. Feminists even embrace it, using the language of equality for mainstream audiences while asserting female superiority among friends (There’d be no wars if women were in charge, right?). The differences aren’t incidental biology nor are they social constructs. Continue reading

Why we have sex

Tags

,

married couple.jpgIf you want to understand how to use something properly, you first need to know its purpose. That’s true of a hammer or a car or a computer, but it’s even more true about sex.

Sex exists for making babies. That isn’t a religious revelation. It’s a statement of fact. The Darwinist accepts it as much as the papist because it’s self-evident to anyone who observes nature. Once we notice this, we understand a couple things about sex: Continue reading

Villages aren’t global

Tags

a community.jpgA community is, by definition, about something held in common. Typically, that means a group of people with a shared place, a shared history, and a shared culture—a shared set of assumptions held and internalized, a shared set of rituals understood and practiced. Technology has done a lot to break down this type of community, but most of what technology has enabled in its place is only community in a euphemistic sense. Continue reading

Religions are not all the same

Tags

pieta.jpgThe secular wisdom on religion is that all religions are essentially the same. Secularists seem to mean one of two things: 1) all religions have similar principles about how to behave, or 2) all religions are equally stupid and wrong. Neither meaning is correct. That religions share similar moral codes about things like lying, stealing, and murdering points to what St. Paul called the “law written in their hearts” and is probably testament to the ability of people everywhere to think abstractly and empathize. That doesn’t make their religions the same. In fact, their moral codes might not look so uniform when looked at closely. Continue reading

100 billion people can’t be wrong

Tags

,

a traditional home.jpgIf you think people naturally connect with the world in layers—from family to neighborhood to city to nation to peoples to world—I have some good news and bad news for you.

The good news is that you’re in the company of about a hundred billion others, folks who have lived life organically connected to their families and communities without a great deal of angst or self-doubt about who they are and where they belong (or who they aren’t and who doesn’t belong). The bad news is that most of those people are dead and the people who share your view today (at least in the Western world) are largely disfranchised. But don’t despair.  Continue reading

The pillars of Western civilization

Tags

, , , , ,

pillars.JPGWestern civilization is built on four pillars: Greek philosophy, Roman law, Christian theology, and modern science. These four pillars have a unifying element that has helped move Western civilization steadily forward, but science—with its exclusive interest in the material and its ability to radically alter how we live—has also become a means of attack by those who want to undermine ethics, society, and faith.

Continue reading

The key to freedom in this world …

Tags

blacksmith and bride.jpg… is economic freedom. The key to economic freedom in this world is twofold:

1) Skill. To have economic freedom, you need to have a skill that is in demand, one that people are willing to pay for.

2) Property. I’m not talking about a house with a 30-year mortgage, I’m talking about owning the property needed to make a living with the skill you have. Continue reading

When in doubt, look between your legs

Tags

, ,

anatomical sketch.jpgGenitals determine your sex and influence your psychology. So if you look between your legs and see a penis, you’re male and more likely to be naturally competitive and like to take things apart and put them back together. If you look between your legs and see a vagina, you’re female and you’re more likely to thrive at expressing your feelings and helping others get in touch with theirs. Continue reading

Hospitality is for guests

Tags

hospitality.jpgI remember reading a travel guide on Spain warning tourists that if they find themselves guests in a Spanish home—especially the home of a more traditional Spanish family—they should avoid complimenting things. Apparently, the tradition in Spain is to offer an object to a houseguest if he compliments it. I think the proper protocol is for the guest to politely decline, so the offer is a custom more than an actual offer, but the custom is a way of expressing the ideal of hospitality.

Hospitality means giving guests the best we have to offer, even it if means giving up what was meant for ourselves. Liberals, of course, place no value on traditional virtues, but are masters at co-opting them as ways to manipulate opinion. Before you give in to their rhetoric, remember this about hospitality: Continue reading