civilization”! Religion can seal human history’s fate.
This is the third subsection of section 2,”Religion Determines Western History” of Chapter 1, the first part of “The History of Western Civilization”. I renamed it ” The great Huntington, religion determines human history. “This subsection mainly introduces and comments on the main contents of Huntington’s book “the clash of Civilizations”. Huntington divides civilization, European political territory, and world territory by religious belief, which is completely consistent with my view. But I think that he dare not fully claim that religion determines human history because of his political correctness. This is the biggest regret of his academic career.
Christianity determines western history
With these foundations in mind, let’s discuss why faith is more important than political ideas. Some people pursue so-called universal political ideas beyond religious beliefs, such as democracy, freedom, human rights, etc., but political ideas seem only the products of philosophers and thinkers’ fiction, just some concepts and words. They can’t impact people’s lives at all, those who can’t read or are illiterate. I will discuss this in Chapter 2 throughout a whole chapter. Because of the greed and degeneration of human nature, humans only adhere to material pleasure and enjoyment, not any ideas, let alone political ideas, so political ideas cannot determine our lives and human history. Humans can fight for material basis and economic interests because these are real wealth and enjoyment. They never fight for political ideas because these ideas are just empty concepts. Being a human bomb for faith is very common, but being a human bomb for political ideas is unheard of. But you have to admit that human society will always have some poets and elites who dedicate themselves to the ideas as a way of life. Still, poets and elites are a minority, after all, which is the reason why they feel lonely and aggrieved. They often lament that they spill all their blood for the universal truth, universal values. However, tons of people don’t ripple around, which really makes them sad and chilling. Why is this? Because they do not know that this is the world’s common sense; the ideas are nothing to most people; it is impossible for most people to sacrifice anything for the ideas. The British film “Lawrence of Arabia” depicts a poet who pursues universal values and goes to the Arab to spread the political ideas of freedom and democracy but to no avail. Instead, he is sodomized by the local Arabs. a still photo is extremely shocking that he lies numbly in the desert, humiliating and insulting. This is the tragic conflict between ideal and reality.
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Some people may immediately question if the British Revolution, the American Revolution, the French Revolution, and the Latin American War of National Independence did not fight for political ideas? In fact, this question is the main content of this book. The English and American revolutions were beyond political ideas, mainly for faith, for the freedom and equality implied in faith. The English Revolution originated from the War of Bishops. The cause was that Charles I forcibly promoted the bishopric in Scotland, which aroused the discontent of the Scottish who believed in Presbyterianism and broke out into a war of resistance called the Battle of the Bishops. Next, Charles I wanted to promote Arminianism and episcopacy in England, which roused the English Puritans’ resentment and eventually erupted into civil war. Finally, at the revolution’s lowest and most critical moment, it was the model army led by Cromwell, mainly composed of Puritans. They sacrificed their lives fighting for the religion of freedom, equality, and the glory of God. In the end, they turned the tide of the war, sent Charles I to the guillotine, and used the Bible as a model to carry out a series of practices of republican politics. During the American Revolution, most colonies again gave way to seeking reconciliation with their home country and hoped to maintain the most primitive relations reflecting colonies and suzerain with Britain.
On the one hand, the stupidity and stubbornness of the then British King George III wanted to conquer the colonies completely. Therefore, he was unwilling to make any concessions. On the other hand, because of the religious beliefs of the Puritans in the four New England states who pursued freedom and equality, they did not compromise. They spontaneously used the sound of gunfire to push the revolutionary process again and again. The revolutionary process, which finally led to American independence, will be elaborated on in detail in the rest of this book. The inhumane massacres of the French Revolution were similar to the peasant revolts in China. It is a kind of vindictive catharsis, and it is difficult to connect them to political philosophy. After independence, the temporary situation of the Latin American nations made it hard to believe those leaders had any political philosophy. They exploit those more for their own material interests, personal glory, and power. It is already another topic and will not be discussed here.
It should be added here that China’s peasant uprising did not belong to any political concept or conflict over economic interests. It was only instinctive to survive or a revengeful rebound for years of brutal oppression. The peasants long bottomed in the Confucian hierarchy and had tasted all the sufferings, misery, and humiliations of the world. Their personality had been distorted to warp, and dignity had been trampled on wantonly for a lifetime. Especially at the end of the dynasty, the royalty and bureaucrats brutally squeezed and exploited them. The Qin Dynasty collected the society’s weapons and cast twelve bronze men; the Yuan Dynasty even controlled the kitchen knife to squeeze and exploit them unconditionally. They could not even have a little resistance, only be squashed to only skin and bones and wait for death. At this time, the elite completely tore off the disguise of Confucianism to show the naked ugliness and evil of human nature. Thus, the rebound of the peasant class, which was extorted to the limit, was also extremely brutal and barbaric. It was a completely vindictive rebound that completely vented the humiliation, shame, and disgrace they had suffered all their lives. The most obvious were Zhang Xianzhong’s slaughter of Sichuan and Li Zicheng’s killing of those surnamed Zhu. It’s not an exaggeration to describe tumultuous upheaval, bloody killing, and brutal tearing of China’s dynasty change as hell on earth. Therefore, it really had nothing to do with any political philosophy.
I am never politically correct to think that all religions are equal because the actual and plain fact is that some religions are indeed barbaric and foolish, while others are indeed civilized and rational, so why should I speak against my conscience? Why should I reverse black and white and confuse right and wrong? If it is because of politically correct, then such political correctness is absolutely false. Humans can’t have so-called political correctness that we must speak against our conscience, reverse black and white, and confuse right and wrong. Huntington clearly pointed out in “The Clash of Civilizations and the Reconstruction of World Order” that “post-Cold War Europe is divided into Western Europe, Central Europe, and Eastern Europe by the criterion of Catholic countries, and Western Europe is the traditional Catholic countries, including most major countries such as France, Germany, Italy, and Spain, while Central Europe refers to the former Catholic countries, meaning Hungary, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia Eastern Europe is the Orthodox countries, including Romania and Bulgaria, the European Union has made it clear that in addition to the Baltic States, no other former Soviet republics will be admitted as member states, with the exception of the Baltic States, which are traditionally Catholic countries, while postponing the application of Orthodox Romania and Bulgaria to join the EU, giving priority to the application of the four Central European countries, the EU will be compatible with the scope of Western civilization. overlap, as has happened in a scene in European history, and NATO will not admit Romania, and Bulgaria as a member is also respecting Russia’s status as a core Orthodox country.” Here Huntington had already used religion as the main basis for dividing the political map of Europe.①
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Further, Let’s take a look at how Huntington discusses Western civilization. He believes that Western civilization includes these aspects: “the classical heritage of ancient Greco-Roman, Catholicism and Protestantism, European languages, the separation of spiritual and secular authority, legal system, social pluralism, representative institutions, and individualism.” Catholicism and Protestantism stand out here.②.When talking about the world’s acceptance of freedom and democracy, Huntington believed that “in addition, the policies and actions of the United States, major Western European countries and international institutions have also helped to establish democratic systems in Spain, Portugal, many Latin American countries, the Philippines, South Korea, and Eastern Europe, Where Christian and Western influence is strong. The new democratic regimes are most likely to remain stable in southern and central Europe, which mainly believe in Catholic and Protestantism, and less stable in Latin America. In East Asia, the Philippines, which believes in Catholicism and is greatly influenced by the United States, returned to democracy in the 1980s. At the same time, Christian leaders in South Korea and Taiwan are also promoting the development of democratization. As already pointed out, stable democracy has succeeded in the former Soviet Union and the Baltic republics; In the Eastern Orthodox republics, the stability of democratic systems is quite different from each other and difficult to predict; The prospects for democracy in Muslim countries are bleak. By the 1990s, except in Cuba, most other countries that believed in Western Christianity and Christianity had a strong influence there and began to change to democracy, except in Africa. “These views are almost consistent with mine, which has been emphasized in this book. Freedom and equality come from Christian Protestantism, so they have the highest degree of conformity with Christian Protestant society. Catholic culture of Latin America seems in conflict with freedom and equality, and freedom and equality conflict with Islamic Society. The primitive tribes in Africa have no idea at all what freedom and equality are.③
Huntington believes that domestic multiculturalism is the main threat to the United States, the largest carrier of Western civilization. The multiculturalism caused by many immigrants adhering to their beliefs weakens the influence of Christianity and might even collapse the United States into multiple countries. This is the most wonderful part of the Book “Conflict of civilizations”. This is also the main reason why the United States is falling into political trouble today. But few people realize this and understand Huntington’s wisdom. In his book, Huntington has always emphasized the conflict of civilizations, the clash between Western civilization and the Islamic world, the clash between Western civilization and emerging economic forces in Asia, etc. I quote extensively from Huntington’s book “The Clash of Civilizations and the Reconstruction of World Order” to point out that much of Huntington’s foresight in the book has now come true. It proves that he is a great and far-sighted thinker and politician. From what we quoted, we can see that Huntington believes that religion has a crucial influence on civilization and clearly shows that Western civilization is a Christian civilization. However, Huntington never explicitly states that the conflict of civilization equates to religious conflict. He dare not say that Western civilization is Christian civilization. Why? Because of political correctness.
The newly elected president of the United States, Trump, is the most politically incorrect politician in the United States. He set up a national prayer day for Americans, expressing his desire to defend American religious freedom and counter any attacks on the faith. In fact, from the disputes caused by his ban on entry visas from Islamic countries, it can be seen that the religious freedom he defended is the freedom of Christianity, and he will fight back against any attack on Christianity. However, he never dared to say that the United States was founded as a Christian nation and that America is a Christian country. All these stem from political correctness also. The apparent facts can not say, dare not say; this is political correctness’s incredible magic. What is political correctness? I will detail it in the following chapters and only briefly introduce it here. Political correctness comes from the most pristine and pure ideals of humans.
Under the greed and degeneration of human nature, humans remain the best memories of paradise, the most beautiful phantom of the Garden of Eden, and some ideas no one dares to refute, such as equality of all people. Even if it is obvious that people are unequal in reality, we dare not refuse it at will. We plainly feel that the idea of inequality between people is very awkward, but I don’t know what’s wrong. However, the inequality between people is a fact; where is it wrong? Why is it awkward? Because it touches the best ideal of humans, the best ideal from the depths of the soul and the universe. Why is political correctness sometimes incorrect? Because unconditional political correctness can only make people forget the nature of humans, a nature that is also equal to all, all people have a nature of greed and degeneration. It is the reason why humans leave the beautiful paradise and Eden, bid farewell to the beautiful ideal, and come to the earth. Therefore, political correctness is a complex concept involving the complex relationship between past and present, heaven and earth? In today’s American Society, you can scold whites but can not chide blacks. A chiding of blacks is racial discrimination. In fact, blacks are the same as whites; their human nature is also greedy and degenerate; unconditional political correctness can only encourage greed and degeneration of the human nature of blacks, which is not necessarily a good thing for blacks. Since the Martin Luther King Jr and Equality Act, How much has blacks’ status changed in American Society? Not only didn’t the status change significantly, but it also exacerbated the conflicts between races. These will be explained in detail in the following chapters. I only introduce them here.
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But for the sake of political correctness, is a society that can’t even tell the truth still a real society? Can a scholar who daren’t admit a fact be a scholar? Although I greatly admire Huntington, I deeply regret that he dared not to state an obvious fact. If you ask me what determines the course of Western history? I will not hesitate to answer the conflict between religions. If you ask me which religion is closest to civilization and rationality, I will also answer Christianity and Protestantism without a second thought. There is no need to speak in the circle or be Shilly-shally. The fact is the fact. So why can’t we admit it? In fact, I am not a Christian. It is only in the process of exploring Western civilization that I gradually understand Christianity.
With the deepening of research, I am attracted step by step and believe in its teachings. However, I never dare to call myself a Christian because there are many Chinese traditional Buddhist hints and Tao clues in my heart. However, I can ensure that Christianity has been in charge of the light of Western civilization for more than 2000 years and has been leading humans forward for more than 2000 years, guiding humans from barbarism and ignorance to civilization, and rationality. So what kind of world is it if there is no Christianity?Primitive tribes in Africa?The jungle empire of South America?Or Chinese scholar-bureaucrats who indulge in three-inch Golden Lotus and had three wives and four concubines?
① Samuel Huntington “The clash of civilizations and the remaking of world order”, Xinhua Publishing House, trans Zhou Qi, Liu Fei, Zhang Liping and Wang Yuan.P 49
② Samuel Huntington “The clash of civilizations and the remaking of world order”, Xinhua Publishing House, trans Zhou Qi, Liu Fei, Zhang Liping and Wang Yuan.P 49
③ Samuel Huntington “The clash of civilizations and the remaking of world order”, Xinhua Publishing House, trans Zhou Qi, Liu Fei, Zhang Liping and Wang Yuan.P 170 – 171
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