Loving Western Civilization

The past eight years have been hard on the people of the western world. It is now not only common, but fashionable, to condemn western civilization and the institutions that made it great. People of European descent are often looked upon as complicit in the “crimes” of their ancestors: racism, colonialism, genocide, and cultural appropriation. The attempt to condemn, undermine and even eliminate, western civilization has been institutionalized in schools, universities, government, and the media. It is now commonplace for people to gain status and power by hating western civilization. Well…I am here to tell you that I love it. 

2014

Johnathon Haight, co-author of the famous book The Coddling of the American Mind recently identified the year 2014 as a turning point in western education. It was 2014, or thereabouts, when students began showing up on campuses fully propagandized against western civilization and determined to end it. Unfortunately, this wasn’t really surprising. Since preschool they had been “taught” that western civilization was responsible for every evil known to man from “patriarchy” to the destruction of the planet. They had also been taught that “whiteness” was society’s greatest problem. How could they have come to any other conclusion, then, that western civilization had to go? 

A Personal Testimony 

In one of my previous posts, entitled “I was an Atheist Buddhist Communist,” I outlined how I was conditioned, even brainwashed, by far left woke ideology. By the time I was 24 and a high school teacher, I was immersed in anti-Christian, anti-western ideology to the point where I felt that everything Asian was wonderful and everything Western was bad. Looking back on it, I can hardly believe that I felt that way, but I did. As a young teacher I set about influencing as many students as possible in my anti-Western ethic and trying to convince people that the West and western civilization was evil. Then something happened. 

Kenneth Clark and “Western Civilization”

Eventually, due to a teaching rotation, I ended up teaching Western Civilization 12. In those days, long before political correctness and DEI, it was a prized elective. The course was based on Sir Kenneth Clarke’s famous series and book of the same name. Teaching it opened my eyes. There before me was the full story of western civilization, complete with its triumphs and disasters, but mainly focussing on the greatness of the West. I began to question my beliefs. If western civilization was so bad, how could it be responsible for so much advancement, beauty and progress? How could I sit there, in a classroom, in a materially wealthy western city griping about the West, a place that had given me the right to condemn it? Wasn’t that a perfect example of hypocrisy? At one point I was sitting in the back of the room, students facing away from me (thank goodness), watching one of Clark’s masterful episodes about the growth of political freedom in the West and I began to tear up. My entire viewpoint had changed. 

Swelling Symphonies, Soaring Cathedrals 

Bit by bit I began to reclaim my pride in being western and in western civilization. As the years went by I started to appreciate the greatness of the West. I was still fascinated with Japan and Japanese culture and would eventually live there for eight years, but the seed of the West had been planted in me. It would never disappear and, eventually, I asked myself, “Why should it?” After going to Europe in the early 1980s and then again over many years, I saw a world of greatness I could not have imagined. Soaring cathedrals, magnificent cities with astonishing architecture and incredible art, the sound of symphony orchestras, the beauty of universities that had been there for over 1500 years. All of it spoke to me of the greatness of the West and the legitimacy of my heritage. It wasn’t responding to a “dog whistle” as the far left would have you believe, it was the truth.  

The Judeo-Christian Connection

Something that travel and reading taught me was the vital importance of Judeo-Christian values in western civilization. Without it the West as we know it would not have existed, and neither would the idea of universities, hospitals, theological speculation, mercy and compassion to an enemy, the golden rule, and a host of other advanced ideas. Other civilizations had them to a certain degree, but not like the West. At one point I actually laughed out loud reading about how the formulators of the E.U. constitution were twisting themselves in knots trying to deny their Christian heritage. All they had to do was look out the window to see a cathedral or historic church and affirm it. There were other influences on the West of course, like our Greco-Roman heritage and the customs of the Germanic peoples, but to exclude our Judeo-Christian heritage, pretending it never existed? Ridiculous…

So Now…

So now you will not find me condemning the West to make points with liberal progressives. Quite the contrary. I have never been prouder of it and more knowledgeable about it than I am now. I can still see the value of other civilizations of course, but condemning the West? Never again…

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Joyce Behnsen
Joyce Behnsen
14 days ago

I Thank You for sharing the dramatic Life Change of Thinking and Believing that you experienced. I was reading along thinking, this man as a Teacher really did have a 360o turn of direction in his thinking. What a ‘wake up call’ that it must have been. I get to the end and see that is our friend Perry Foster here locally !! What a shock and pleasant surprise by Perry Foster. I like you as you are now
representing ‘the vital importance of Judeo-Christian values in western civilization.’

Perry Foster
11 days ago
Reply to  Joyce Behnsen

Yes. It was indeed a life changing experience. Thanks for acknowledging me Joyce with this comment. Actually, I write all of the posts for FDC. and I am proud to be a champion of Judeo Christian values and western civilization. My posts have reached quite a few people now, and I have had some very interesting comments. It is vital that we get the message of dedicated conservatives and social conservatives out into the general population. Please share this post if you can. Thanks.

Lori Hamilton
Lori Hamilton
14 days ago

I don’t have a comment at this time, except that I would like to be notified of any additional comments that are made. And it appears that the “Notify me of follow-up comments by email” doesn’t work unless I leave a comment!

Perry Foster
11 days ago
Reply to  Lori Hamilton

Thanks for letting me know about this. For now maybe leave a comment and then you will be able to get into the conversation. I will look into the problem with the “Notify me of follow up comments by email function.

Hal Adam
14 days ago

A great and interesting story. What I find interesting is how many of us can be off in a wrong direction but that you did not want to be a hypocrite. It seems to me that many of the leaders of Eastern thinking and/or the Mother Earth Worshipping movement are not concerned of being a hypocrite since they are beyond that as a leader, for example, when pointing out to them that their carbon foot print is bigger than a Sasquatch when they all fly on their private jets.

robb machattie
robb machattie
14 days ago

Well said!!! We need to continue showing that Christianity is responsible for the advancements of science/technology etc that have raised the standard of living of our country and many others, including many third world countries, so that the average human has a better life now than at any other time in history. And that the breakdowns we are increasingly seeing now are a direct result of moving away from those Christian values!!!

Perry Foster
11 days ago
Reply to  robb machattie

Absolutely right! Our movement away from Judeo Christian values is directly responsible for our current decline. It was Christianity that established so many of our values and scientific advancements, from William of Ockham to Newton. We need to revive those values and restore our civilization by doing so. Thanks for this comment.

Dave
Dave
14 days ago

Thank you for publishing this one. I’ve thought to myself the same, how can the various institutions and traditions of the West, which many being classically liberal, be so bad, if it has been those very institutions and traditions that has allowed so many people to be able to express their opinions and find new footings in their life..

Perry Foster
11 days ago
Reply to  Dave

They, meaning those on the now totalitarian liberal progressive woke side of the equation, somehow miss this. It’s astonishing! They wouldn’t be able to carry out their attacks on western civilization in any other society. So many of them don’t even get the fact that in China, or some other totalitarian state they would be crushed and imprisoned. The very rights they have come from the civilization they want to destroy! Actually, I think we should be a lot less tolerant toward their behaviour.

Dave
Dave
6 days ago
Reply to  Perry Foster

Mhm.

Sir Karl Popper spoke about something similar. Tolerance of the intolerance, of those who incite violence and aggression against the very institutions that make our society “open”, should not be given a free pass..

Edward Field
Edward Field
14 days ago

Thanks, Perry, for describing how your own admiration for Asian philosophies came to be balanced with a renewed appreciation for western civilization. Reading recently about the devastating conquest of Inca peoples by the Spanish 500 years ago, I could understand our current revulsion for colonial exploitation. But that, of course, is not the whole story.
At the funeral of Queen Elizabeth many world leaders recognized a queen who long represented much of what is good about western civilization.

Perry Foster
11 days ago
Reply to  Edward Field

I think it is just the truth about the historical narrative. Tamerlane is estimated to have killed 5% of the human population! The Mongols slaughtered millions.Arabs, spreading Islam and their own power, killed untold thousands and reduced peoples to second class status for centuries. Baibar the Muslim leader, wiped out whole cities. None of these people were western. We are a bloody and violent species. Western civilization should not be burdened with the blame for this.

Patricia Field
Patricia Field
12 days ago

I’m reminded of the phrase:” Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater.”
No society is perfect, though those who have been strongly influenced by Christian teaching have
so often worked to elevate the plight of marginalized individuals and repressive institutions.
I wonder what would our current culture look like
were it not for the strong influence of the teachings of Jesus upon the hearts of many Western leaders of past years?

Perry Foster
11 days ago
Reply to  Patricia Field

Yes indeed. Let’s not throw that baby out! Our current society would not be anything like it is today without Christ’s influence. Let’s not forget that. Thanks for the comment.

Wanda
Wanda
12 days ago

Thankyou .
For sharing this very refreshing article.
You shared many truths that our young people need yo hear.

Perry Foster
11 days ago
Reply to  Wanda

My pleasure! The young really do need to hear this message, but everyone else does as well. Western Civilization is magnificent and nothing to be ashamed of.

Nicodemus
Nicodemus
11 days ago

Such a great blog post — thank you Perry! You reminded me of the Prodigal Son… returning to the truth of Western Civilization… also a reminder that Kenneth Clark’s book and TV series would make a great gift for someone young in our lives who will not be exposed to this material by woke teachers or professors. Amazon ca has the book here https://www.amazon.ca/Civilisation-Kenneth-Clark/dp/0719568447 but I noticed that Canada’s streaming sites have almost all “cancelled” this video.

Mike Groenewold
Mike Groenewold
11 days ago

Any fair assessment of world cultures down through the ages will show that there is something utterly unique about western civilization. And if one drills down into what it is that made it so unique, so productive, so profoundly impactful for good in the world, one finds the pure gold of Biblical Christianity with its Judeo/Christian foundation. This is true despite the obvious sins and failings of it, things that every civilization must honestly own up to. May it rise to greatness again!