Western Civilization

From the Archives – Reason, Faith and the Struggle for Western Civilization: A Review

Some time ago, I came across Samuel Gregg’s book while perusing items at Acton.org, and the title caught my eye. In my personal efforts to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Cor. 10:5), I’ve frequently felt that I don’t yet have an adequate understanding of the relationship between faith and reason, and by extension, the relationship between the sciences and Scripture.

The book didn’t take me where I hoped to go on that topic. It did, however, provide an interesting and enjoyable survey of the history of Western thought, and one of the better interpretations of the role of reason and Christianity in Western thought.

Samuel Gregg is the director of research at the Acton Institute and has degrees in philosophy from the University of Melbourne (MA) and Oxford (PhD). Though he has written a pile of books, mostly on economics, his focus in this volume is more history-focused than I expected. Though the hardcover edition has 256 pages, I also felt that it ended at just about the point where there should have been several more chapters on various views of the relationship between faith and reason and analysis of supporting arguments—as well as more consideration of potential strategies for preserving what remains of Western Civilization.

Chapters six and seven do address these topics, and they aren’t a bad start, but I was hoping for a deeper and more comprehensive exploration.

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Gallup: Americans' Confidence in Major U.S. Institutions Dips

"Currently, an average 33% of U.S. adults express 'a great deal' or 'quite a lot' of confidence in 14 institutions, marking a three-percentage-point dip since 2020 and a return to the level seen in 2018 and 2019." - Gallup

Related, at Lifeway: Americans’ Confidence in Church Drops to Near Historic Low

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Princeton Trades Classics for Diversity?

"Imagine a software engineering class that doesn’t make students learn computer code. That should give you some idea how ridiculous it is that Princeton University is no longer requiring classics majors to learn Greek or Latin. Not zoology students or English majors, but classics students. You know, the folks who study Greek and Latin culture." - Breakpoint

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On Being Christian in Our Strange Secular, Neo-Pagan Society

"One way to understand the so-called “cancel culture” of 2021 which has no tolerance for freedom of thought and expression is that it is the product of a Christian influence that is cut away from its roots in a living Christian tradition. The virtue of, say, racial justice is cut loose from its Christian roots and allowed to wander and do harm." - Timothy Whitaker

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