This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

Hierarchy

Once we admit that there is such a thing as an order of reality that transcends our own, we have admitted the necessity of a vertical ordering to things, and to say vertical ordering is to say hierarchy. Therefore, anyone who believes in heaven already believes in hierarchy. Every domain in our reality exhibits this hierarchical principle, including life itself. This includes human life whether we have in mind its beginning, when the infant is hierarchically dependent and therefore subordinate to the parents, or its end, when a parent descends into senility and frailty and the subordination is reversed so that the child cares for the parent. To deny this is to deny nature. All of the institutions, laws, and customs we see in traditional civilizations involve respect for the principle of hierarchy, and social life especially, which is why every traditional civilization developed for itself some form of the caste system. On the other hand, a materialistic civilization that has no interest in transcendence and instead sees religious belief as a kind of backward slavery to imaginary beings would find it easy to imagine a more egalitarian order. Such a world would ignore the concepts of ‘higher’ or ‘lower’ and would fixate on quantitative distinctions rather than qualitative. All of this will be discussed at length in a more appropriate place.

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