Douglas Murray’s ‘the strange death of europe’, is Europe’s atheism a symptom of its ultimate demise? 

 
heartscontent31
 
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heartscontent31
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28 October 2017 23:03
 

In Douglas Murray’s ‘The Strange Death Of Europe’ he proposes that for centuries Christian tradition instilled Europeans with a sense of cultural identity and existential fortitude. As Europe has largely shed its religious tradition the people of the continent now fail to replace it with something that gives them meaning. This then gives rise to a nihilistic form of mass cultural consumerism and a spiritual listlessness that renders the European people weak and self doubting. As the population is eclipsed by a tsunami wave of immigrants the empty European culture is left defenseless and vulnerable against the influence of a new population whose people posses a zealous spiritual conviction.

Does Murray seem to be saying that the loss of Christianity was ultimately bad for Europe?

[ Edited: 29 October 2017 00:20 by heartscontent31]
 
jdrnd
 
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29 October 2017 19:24
 
heartscontent31 - 28 October 2017 11:03 PM

As Europe has largely shed its religious tradition the people of the continent now fail to replace it with something that gives them meaning.

As the population is eclipsed by a tsunami wave of immigrants the empty European culture is left defenseless and vulnerable against the influence of a new population whose people posses a zealous spiritual conviction.

Well I haven’t read the book, but I can’t see how making believe a fictional character is real is meaningful.

Humanism is a more constructive replacement.

Unfortunately immigrants do not want to assimilate. 
This is the problem.
They want a change in location but not in the beliefs that made it difficult for them to live safely in their previous location

 

 
GAD
 
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GAD
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29 October 2017 19:34
 
jdrnd - 29 October 2017 07:24 PM
heartscontent31 - 28 October 2017 11:03 PM

As Europe has largely shed its religious tradition the people of the continent now fail to replace it with something that gives them meaning.

As the population is eclipsed by a tsunami wave of immigrants the empty European culture is left defenseless and vulnerable against the influence of a new population whose people posses a zealous spiritual conviction.

Well I haven’t read the book, but I can’t see how making believe a fictional character is real is meaningful.

Humanism is a more constructive replacement.

Unfortunately immigrants do not want to assimilate. 
This is the problem.
They want a change in location but not in the beliefs that made it difficult for them to live safely in their previous location

Moreover what they seek is to raise their own beliefs to power.

 
 
Brick Bungalow
 
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Brick Bungalow
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31 October 2017 09:34
 

Murray makes some valid and urgent points but his premise is tainted by his love of hyperbole and sweeping generalization. I hear alt right types talk a lot about Europe is a lost cause or whatever and they are, of course referencing what they consider a deluge of immigrants. Essentially every cultural deficit or law enforcement challenge or resource issue or anything else that involves an immigrant population is painted as some kind of world ending crisis. There are serious issues, no doubt but I think a real and honest assessment of the issue reveals that it’s not a case of all immigrants versus all natives**. Rather you have pods of lawlessness within each of these populations that are motivated to paint the entire culture as hopelessly polarized. We see the same thing locally. There are partisans on all points of the spectrum within the U.S. who try and covertly recruit half the society rather than taking personal responsibility for their favorite issue. Trump supporting threatening civil war, for instance. I think most places you can visit feature people from various places and backgrounds working together in peace toward their common economic interests. The instinct toward polarization seems rooted in the habit of judging situations from a distance.

**people who most excitedly affirm the status of native rarely deserve it.

 
Brick Bungalow
 
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31 October 2017 09:37
 
Brick Bungalow - 31 October 2017 09:34 AM

Murray makes some valid and urgent points but his premise is tainted by his love of hyperbole and sweeping generalization. I hear alt right types talk a lot about Europe is a lost cause or whatever and they are, of course referencing what they consider a deluge of immigrants. Essentially every cultural deficit or law enforcement challenge or resource issue or anything else that involves an immigrant population is painted as some kind of world ending crisis. There are serious issues, no doubt but I think a real and honest assessment of the issue reveals that it’s not a case of all immigrants versus all natives**. Rather you have pods of lawlessness within each of these populations that are motivated to paint the entire culture as hopelessly polarized. We see the same thing locally. There are partisans on all points of the spectrum within the U.S. who try and covertly recruit half the society rather than taking personal responsibility for their favorite issue. Trump supporters threatening civil war, for instance. I think most places you can visit feature people from various places and backgrounds working together in peace toward their common economic interests. The instinct toward polarization seems rooted in the habit of judging situations from a distance.

**people who most excitedly affirm the status of native rarely deserve it.

 
manderin
 
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09 November 2017 14:47
 

Agree with Mr. Murray 100%.

As much as we may find our Bible Belt here in the U.S. annoying, those types of people and their prevalence in the United States are in large part the reason why terrorism and problems resulting from muslim immigration have not affected us as much as other countries.  Geography is not the main reason because other nations that are just as difficult for these immigrants to travel to distance wise (ie Canada or Australia) have had more problems with terrorism and islamic immigration than the U.S.  Why?  Because those countries like Europe no longer have the old religious nutcases as they’ve evolved to become predominantly secular.  Though we may not believe in a make believe savior I submit to you that we’re actually very LUCKY to have these super Catholics in our country.  (I don’t know the difference between Catholic and Christian so please excuse my interchanging of these terms for now)

It is the insistence that we are a “christian” nation and the prevalence of these people that has made many of our politicians cater to them and their views that Christianity must reign.  A politician who supports bringing in too many people from a nation who strongly opposes these ideas would not stay in power for long in those areas of the U.S.  And the U.S. has more of these areas than other nations do.  We often wish this wasn’t so, but I believe that it it wasn’t for these religious bible thumpers we would have a much bigger problem with Islam in this country.

Like it or not, Human beings evolved as tribal creatures.  Though we like to think of ourselves as higher, the truth is we are part of the animal kingdom and have evolved in Tribes.  We NEED tribes in order to feel fulfilled and survive.  Studies have clearly shown that humans who lack a sense of belonging die sooner and have a much more difficult time recovering from disease than those who feel they are part of a ‘tribe’ and engage in it.  White blood cell count drops among those who do not have an adequate social circle.  The actual physical cells in our body are literally affected. 

What makes a tribe?  ultimately- BELIEFS make a tribe.  Experiences which lead to beliefs which are strongly correlated with labels.

Black, White, Female, Russian, Trans, Buddhist, Muslim, etc, etc -  These are all tribes and despite their differences they are organized by deep Belief systems.

So we cannot be surprised when Secularism comes along to eradicate the tribes people were once a part of just to say :  We have NO BELIEFS, they are essentially saying, We are not a tribe.  Asking humans to devoid themselves of tribalism is like trying to get a Cat to eat grass and a giraffe to eat hot dogs.  In all these cases the species cannot get sustenance from things it did not evolve to partake in.  Humans did not evolve to partake in ‘no tribe’.  Historically, humans that took this approach PERISHED!

This is exactly why there have been so many converts to islam in Europe.  Human beings by nature crave something to believe in. Humans crave SOMETHING TO DIE FOR. 
This doesn’t mean we want to die.  It just means that only when you have something to die for, does the act of living truly have meaning.  If you have a child that you are willing to die for that means that you have strong beliefs which correlate with that particular child.  The highest and strongest beliefs are the one’s you are willing to sacrifice your very breath for.  Likewise, it’s this belief in what this child is to you that makes your own life more meaningful and precious to you.  Working to feed your child has a much different flavor than working- just because.  In which case are you more likely to feel lethargic and nihilistic about working at all?

  People crave being part of a tribe whether they realize it or not.  Meditation and Enllightenment can free you of this craving and make you more than just the cravings the dna of humanity demands- but do we really expect 99.9% of the population to be this way?  Before we reach enlightenment and be able to rest within our ‘true identity’  we will just have to fall back on our tribal identities.  If there is no tribal identity, we will often seek one out.  Islam offers people a tribe to belong to, which means it gives them something to believe in.  Secularism is not actually a tribe for it believes in nothing.  Islam like other religions says: We do this because we believe this.  Secularism says: We believe nothing so lets go shop for more useless things.  - And there lies the problem.

 

[ Edited: 09 November 2017 14:53 by manderin]
 
June
 
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10 November 2017 17:42
 
manderin - 09 November 2017 02:47 PM

Agree with Mr. Murray 100%.

As much as we may find our Bible Belt here in the U.S. annoying, those types of people and their prevalence in the United States are in large part the reason why terrorism and problems resulting from muslim immigration have not affected us as much as other countries.  Geography is not the main reason because other nations that are just as difficult for these immigrants to travel to distance wise (ie Canada or Australia) have had more problems with terrorism and islamic immigration than the U.S.  Why?  Because those countries like Europe no longer have the old religious nutcases as they’ve evolved to become predominantly secular.  Though we may not believe in a make believe savior I submit to you that we’re actually very LUCKY to have these super Catholics in our country.  (I don’t know the difference between Catholic and Christian so please excuse my interchanging of these terms for now)

It is the insistence that we are a “christian” nation and the prevalence of these people that has made many of our politicians cater to them and their views that Christianity must reign.  A politician who supports bringing in too many people from a nation who strongly opposes these ideas would not stay in power for long in those areas of the U.S.  And the U.S. has more of these areas than other nations do.  We often wish this wasn’t so, but I believe that it it wasn’t for these religious bible thumpers we would have a much bigger problem with Islam in this country.

Like it or not, Human beings evolved as tribal creatures.  Though we like to think of ourselves as higher, the truth is we are part of the animal kingdom and have evolved in Tribes.  We NEED tribes in order to feel fulfilled and survive.  Studies have clearly shown that humans who lack a sense of belonging die sooner and have a much more difficult time recovering from disease than those who feel they are part of a ‘tribe’ and engage in it.  White blood cell count drops among those who do not have an adequate social circle.  The actual physical cells in our body are literally affected. 

What makes a tribe?  ultimately- BELIEFS make a tribe.  Experiences which lead to beliefs which are strongly correlated with labels.

Black, White, Female, Russian, Trans, Buddhist, Muslim, etc, etc -  These are all tribes and despite their differences they are organized by deep Belief systems.

So we cannot be surprised when Secularism comes along to eradicate the tribes people were once a part of just to say :  We have NO BELIEFS, they are essentially saying, We are not a tribe.  Asking humans to devoid themselves of tribalism is like trying to get a Cat to eat grass and a giraffe to eat hot dogs.  In all these cases the species cannot get sustenance from things it did not evolve to partake in.  Humans did not evolve to partake in ‘no tribe’.  Historically, humans that took this approach PERISHED!

This is exactly why there have been so many converts to islam in Europe.  Human beings by nature crave something to believe in. Humans crave SOMETHING TO DIE FOR. 
This doesn’t mean we want to die.  It just means that only when you have something to die for, does the act of living truly have meaning.  If you have a child that you are willing to die for that means that you have strong beliefs which correlate with that particular child.  The highest and strongest beliefs are the one’s you are willing to sacrifice your very breath for.  Likewise, it’s this belief in what this child is to you that makes your own life more meaningful and precious to you.  Working to feed your child has a much different flavor than working- just because.  In which case are you more likely to feel lethargic and nihilistic about working at all?

  People crave being part of a tribe whether they realize it or not.  Meditation and Enllightenment can free you of this craving and make you more than just the cravings the dna of humanity demands- but do we really expect 99.9% of the population to be this way?  Before we reach enlightenment and be able to rest within our ‘true identity’  we will just have to fall back on our tribal identities.  If there is no tribal identity, we will often seek one out.  Islam offers people a tribe to belong to, which means it gives them something to believe in.  Secularism is not actually a tribe for it believes in nothing.  Islam like other religions says: We do this because we believe this.  Secularism says: We believe nothing so lets go shop for more useless things.  - And there lies the problem.

 


Excellent post.  I’ve read Douglas Murray’s book and found it to be quite sobering.  I wasn’t aware just how powerful the art of meditation could be.  Thanks.