Saturday, June 01, 2013

"The True Crisis of our Time"

Read the transcription of an amazing speech by Malcolm Muggeridge today entitled:


Audio is available here -->   AUDIO

.PDF version is available here --> TEXT

Amazing speech.  I would recommend that everyone take the time to listen to and read the whole thing.  I have included some highlights below.  

"We look back on history, and what do we see? Empires rising and falling; revolutions and counter-revolutions succeeding one another; wealth accumulating and wealth dispersed; one nation dominant and then another. As Shakespeare's King Lear puts it, “the rise and fall of great ones that ebb and flow with the moon.” In one lifetime I've seen my fellow countrymen ruling over a quarter of the world, and the great majority of them convinced – in the words of what is still a favorite song – that God has made them mighty and will make them mightier yet.

I've heard a crazed Austrian announce the establishment of a German Reich that was to last for a thousand years; an Italian clown report that the calendar will begin again with his assumption of power; a murderous Georgian brigand in the Kremlin acclaimed by the intellectual elite as wiser than Solomon, more enlightened than Ashoka, more humane than Marcus Aurelius.

I've seen America wealthier than all the rest of the world put together; and with the superiority of weaponry that would have enabled Americans, had they so wished, to outdo an Alexander or a Julius Caesar in the range and scale of conquest.

All in one little lifetime – gone with the wind: England now part of an island off the coast of Europe, threatened with further dismemberment; Hitler and Mussolini seen as buffoons; Stalin a sinister name in the regime he helped to found and dominated totally for three decades; Americans haunted by fears of running out of the precious fluid that keeps their motorways roaring and the smog settling, by memories of a disastrous military campaign in Vietnam, and the windmills of Watergate.

Can this really be what life is about – this worldwide soap opera going on from century to century, from era to era, as old discarded sets and props litter the earth?"

 "So the final conclusion would surely be that whereas other civilizations have been brought down by attacks of barbarians from without, ours had the unique distinction of training its own destroyers at its own educational institutions, and then providing them with facilities for propagating their destructive ideology far and wide, all at the public expense.

Thus did Western Man decide to abolish himself, creating his own boredom out of his own affluence, his own vulnerability out of his own strength, his own impotence out of his own erotomania, himself blowing the trumpet that brought the walls of his own city tumbling down, and having convinced himself that he was too numerous, labored with pill and scalpel and syringe to make himself fewer.

Until at last, having educated himself into imbecility, and polluted and drugged himself into stupefaction, he heeled over – a weary, battered old brontosaurus – and became extinct."
"I wanted to conclude in this way: Christianity, I want to say, is indeed essentially a religion of hope. A new, stupendous hope, born of the Incarnation, and creating a tidal wave of creativity and joy to revivify a world as tired, bored, and decadent as ours… 
What then is this Christian hope, valid when first propounded and expounded some 2000 years ago; buoying up Western man through all vicissitudes and uncertainties of Christendom's 20 centuries; and available today – when it's more needed perhaps than ever before – as it will be available tomorrow and forever, whatever the circumstances, whoever the individual or individuals in question, and however inimical to it may be the shape of human society and the manner of the exercise of authority by those who rule over it?"

"The hope is simply that by identifying ourselves with the Incarnate God, by absorbing ourselves in His teaching, by living out the drama of His life with Him – including especially the Passion, that powerhouse of love and creativity – by living with and in Him we are suddenly caught up in the glory of God's love flooding the universe: every color brighter, every meaning clearer, every shape more shapely, every note more musical, every true word written and spoken more explicit; above all, every human face, all human companionship, each and every human encounter a family affair of brothers and sisters with all the categories – beautiful or plain, clever or slow-witted, sophisticated or simple – utterly irrelevant; and any who might be hobbling along with limbs or minds awry; any who might be afflicted particularly dear and cherished; the animals too, flying, prowling, burrowing, and all their diverse cries and grunts and bellowings; and the majestic hilltops and the gaunt rocks giving their blessed shade; and the rivers making their way to the lakes and the sea – all, all irradiated with this same new glory.

What other hope is there which could possibly compare with such a hope as this?"

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