This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

This Dark Age is now available in paperback on Amazon. The print version is MUCH cleaner than this online version, which is largely unedited and has fallen by the wayside as the project has grown. If you’ve appreciated my writing, please consider leaving a review on the relevant paperback volumes. The print edition also includes new sections (Military History, War Psychology, Dogmatic Theology).

Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3| Volume 4 | Volume 5 | Volume 6

The importance of a shared vision of the good

One of the reasons that religion was always placed at the top of the social hierarchy in traditional societies was the awareness of the communality of good and evil, and the necessity of collective spiritual development for the sake of shared moral hygiene.

The problem that faces us today is that contemporary political systems deny the universal responsibility (of persons and of public authorities) to pursue the good. Rather, they propose to limit the purpose of government to the enforcement of certain liberties, which is just as contradictory as it sounds. This reduces the whole purpose of government to that of ‘rights referee’, and how terrible it would be to play referee in a game wherein the rules are always changing and with players who each think they are playing a different game.

The result of modern political philosophy is that not only do societies not possess a shared vision of the good, but they do not even consider it legitimate to pursue or discuss such a thing. Each citizen is told to do as he wishes so long as he does not infringe on the rights of others. The good does not factor in.

Faced with this situation, much of what we have said would require delicate interpretation before it could be given external implementation, and one should be extremely careful about attempting to translate what we’ve said here into political action. We will repeat that we are not trying to build a party platform but to render the world more comprehensible to a few people.

We feel compelled to emphasize this warning not because political resistance to evil is forbidden, and in fact it would be very good in principle, but because the governments we know today are not guided by a religious authority and therefore have a distorted and partial understanding of the good, not to mention humanity itself. Thus, contemporary public authorities are so incompetent that they could not even participate in the discussion we are having.

It is permissible for government to have a role in the shared pursuit of the good, but only as a late-stage externalization of that pursuit. The political authority is enlisted organically in a spiritual project already underway. Society must first and foremost decide where its loyalties are, and the soul of a people must achieve some level of unity of spiritual vision, or else any government action on behalf of spiritual education is bound to become monstrous and misguided.

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