Book Review: Reason, Faith, and the Struggle for Western Civilization by Samuel Gregg

Reason, Faith, and the Struggle for Western Civilization by Samuel Gregg The Garrett Ashley Mullet Show

‘Reason, Faith, and the Struggle for Western Civilization’ by Samuel Gregg covers two critically important subjects: the relationship between rationality and religious belief for one, and the legacy and destiny of the West for another.

Gregg argues clearly and concisely here that Western Civilization is predicated on the synthesis of faith and reason. Instead of choosing one or the other, the wedding of Jewish belief and Greek thought in Christianity made possible the greatest and surest improvement in human quality of life ever, bar none. 

Therefore, those striving to divorce the West from its theological and philosophical heritage stand poised to destroy the single greatest force for good humanly speaking since the beginning of recorded history.

But the second book I finished today was a surprisingly fitting companion to Gregg. 

‘Sex, Lies, and Scantrons: The Average American’s Public School Experience’ by Matt Saccaro serves as a first-hand account of the personal ramifications of such efforts by secularists to hollow out Western thought and remake it in their own godless image.  

According to Saccaro, our education system routinely allows students to torment, harass, bully, and pressure one another into unhealthy ways of being and relating. Teachers, meanwhile, alternate between barely concealing their disdain for their pupils and harshly upbraiding them for making them look as bad as they in fact are. 

Consequently, the kids are foul-mouthed, uncouth, abusive, and unrestrained by anything that could remotely be called Christian morality. And to this the adults in the mix by and large shrug. They turn a blind eye, unless doing otherwise might cost them personally.

In sum, the whole lot acts like animals and mercenaries because they’re conditioned to believe they’re animals and mercenaries in the absence of even the concept of the soul or its significance.

And this is why we homeschool, by the way.

Of a piece with all off the above is the recent story from Not the Bee of a Tallahassee, Florida middle school principal Sarah Hembree taking to Facebook to rebuke parents for “getting in their way,” then brag that teachers are going to “do what’s best for your students in spite of you.”

The whole lot explains also why Louisiana HB813 – ‘The Abolition of Abortion in Louisiana Act’ – was just withdrawn by its sponsor, Republican State Rep. Danny McCormick, after an amendment passed 65 to 26 on Thursday night stating that “the pregnant female shall not be held responsible for the criminal consequences” if she tries to get an abortion in violation of the proposed legislation.

In conclusion, to the degree the West generally, and America in particular, has abandoned the union of faith and reason, we have correspondingly lost the ability to agree or reach anything approaching consensus that truth and goodness are objectively knowable, and that it is our sober responsibility before God to both know them and act accordingly.

Nowhere is this more starkly evident than with regards to how we dispose of our children, prenatal and post-partum.

If there is to be any hope of salvaging the above for ourselves and our posterity, by God’s grace, we must return once more to this conviction, that “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is insight.

Nothing less will do.

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