History and the Idea of Progress

A Thought of the Day:

We’re currently reading through the third volume of John Strickland’s history epic “From Paradise to Utopia“, outlining a somewhat different perspective on the changes and forces shaping the centuries from the Italian Humanism towards the early 19 hundreds in Europe.

A central idea is that once the experience of a spiritual, inner Paradise had been dismissed, new dreams gradually replaced this longing – among these a dream of a future, secular and perfect earthly society. And thus came the elevation of broader ideologies that would kindle these dreams as an aspiration to work towards, but often with disruptive and counter-productive means.

And just as a contrast one might look at other major cultures today that are looking back at the past as the ideal and aspiration to draw from instead. And this basic orientation could often influence a culture at a very deep level.

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