Abid Ullah Jan Updated on 2004-02-02 02:23:56
Many in the West could not digest the idea of decline after going through Oswald Spengler’s famous work, "The Decline of the West" in 1917. Around fifty years later, Arnold Toynbee's based his scholarly treatise upon consideration of numerous civilizations and set out the symptoms and prognosis of Western condition, but still left many with doubts that Western civilization is disintegrating.
Over all the West remained committed to denying the fate it was slowly succumbing to ever since the French Revolution, which Toynbee claimed marked the start of Western slide into decay.
After reading Stephen L. Carter, A.N. Wilson and Patrick Buchanan, a great majority around the world, however, accepted the fact in the nineties that Western civilization is, at least, decaying.
Finally, David Livingstone's "The Dying God: Hidden History of Western Civilization" (2002), leads readers to the conclusion that the god they just considered as dying has long been dead.
For moulding public opinion in favor of the dead god, commentators from Thomas Friedman to Victor Davis Hanson and Daniel Pipes have successfully employed the phrase: Muslims "hate us for who we are." Political and military leaders, such as Bush, Blair and Boykin, are busy promoting the same philosophy of secular supremacy on practical grounds.
A literature review shows that this phrase is used in hundreds of ways. That is, undoubtedly, true, but the proponents of this idea don’t bother to pause and ponder, just what they really are. They don't ask, what "are we"?
Speaking on behalf of Bush, Friedman tells "leaders" of the Muslim world: “Friends, unless you have a war within your civilization, there is going to be a war between our civilizations.” Brink Lindsey of the Cato Institute warned Muslims that "rote memorization of ancient texts, suppression of critical inquiry and dissent" are "the recipe for anything other than [Islamic] civilizational decline." 
A war on Muslim civilization was, however, officially declared one year before Friedman sent this unofficial message to the so-called Muslim leaders. On September 26, 2001, after a meeting in Berlin last Wednesday with Russian President and the German Chancellor, Berlusconi declared: "We cannot put all civilizations on the same level. We must be aware of our supremacy, of the superiority of Western civilization." 
The need is to crack some of the foundation blocks of Western civilization, and weaken the edifice. There is no need to foster rebellion, but just disinterest.
We definitely can reduce the awe that the globalists attract, and simply cause people to look elsewhere, elsewhere from mainstream TV, Hollywood, and materialism in general.
Livingstone believe, "we will frustrate the efforts of the globalists merely by turning people's attention away from them."
Once it is done, they will then be able to look to higher ideals.
Few days later, on November 1, David F. Fort declared: "We are in a war for civilization…"  Bush followed swiftly on the already prepared ground and declared five days later, our enemies are a threat "to [our] civilization itself." This message is still on the White House official web site." 
What civilization, values and lifestyle are these warriors of civilization talking about? After regurgitating "our life style" and "our civilization" for 21 months without giving any explanation, Blair came to explain it to the US Congress on July 17, 2003.
The main elements of his "common civilizational values are: " ...we all have too much to lose. Because technology, communication, trade and travel are bringing us ever closer together... countries like yours and mine have trebled their growth and standard of living. Because even those powers like Russia or China can see the horizon of future wealth clearly and know they are on a steady road toward it. And because all nations that are free value that freedom, will defend it absolutely..."
Ever-increasing wealth, communication, trade, travel? Is that what centuries and millenia of a common tradition is all about? Is Western civilization really as shallow as all that? or it is what Charles Krauthammer describes: "The world hates the US for its wealth, its success, its power." This is a good description of a sterile, reductive, material view of existence, in which there is nothing higher than human desires and the organization of society to satisfy them to the maximum extent. David Livingstone digs history with different perspective and goes to the roots of this world view of endless, ever-expanding consumerism, of prosperity for the sake of prosperity, of freedom for the sake of freedom.
The book 'The Dying God' answers the questions that are confusing people today. It also exposes foundations of the lifestyle Friedman is talking about when he says, "Suicidal Islamist militants have the potential to erode our lifestyle. It takes us back to the beginnings of Western Civilization and look over the worldview, or philosophy, that Western culture is based upon.
There is a devastating error in the philosophy that began and shaped Western civilization up to the present day. So called 'globalization' of secularism is little more than the end game of that original error. It is difficult for Westerners to understand themselves or the meaning that can be found in their lives. David Livingstone shows that much of Western thinking is like a hypnotic fog that infects every move the Westerns make and the rumbling of "our way of life" further thickens this fog.
'The Dying God' takes a tour through life inside the distorted historical confines of Western civilization, explaining the view and pointing out the illusions step by step. It shatters the fundamental misconceptions such as, "Greeks [are] our ancestors," the West has "dominated modern history, but all of history, and therefore, has been the single greatest contributor of the accomplishments that have benefited mankind," and that Western values "have demonstrated their efficacy, and ... the rest of the world ...is yet mired in a more primitive stage of evolution."
David Livingstone explains the occult doctrines become the bedrock of Western civilization as they were "disseminated through a network of secret societies, like the Rosicrucians and Freemasons. Though claiming affiliation to Christianity, they adhered to complex belief systems quite distant from Christian teachings."
This is from where the rot begins. The soul of a Culture is closely related to the strong religious beliefs of the leaders of the people within which the Culture is to take root and grow. The recent complaints are that Muslim do not say goodbye to their culture which holds them from perfect assimilation in the Western civilization. Spengler saw this interrelation in this way: "[A Culture] dies when the soul has actualized the full sum of its possibilities in the shape of peoples, languages, dogmas, arts, states, sciences, and reverts into the proto-soul."
In other words, when the underlying religious beliefs of the "soul" of the Culture cease to motivate mankind into the formation "peoples, languages, dogmas, arts, states, [and] sciences," at that point the "soul" and the Culture dies. However, he believed that the "peoples, languages, dogmas, arts, states, [and] sciences" live on, in the form actualized by the Culture, and he called this "life after death" experience "Civilization."
The essential concept here is that, once you perceive the rise of Civilization, the Culture is dead! The "soul" has been removed from the existence of the populace, and religion no longer inspires mankind to the attainment of higher objectives. So, what is the force which drives "The Decline of the West?" It is, rather, the lack of a force at two levels: first, it is the failure of the now-dead "soul" of the Culture to support further developments (or as Spengler would say, to actualize further possibilities), and second, there is no such force in a world dominated by secularism to keep the civilization thriving as well.
A civilization is a shared understanding, and the decline of a civilization is the decay of this communal understanding from sensible to senseless. A community maintains its understanding by passing it from generation to generation. That is, each generation is charged with rearing its progeny as dutiful (unselfish) citizens who revere the morality, hence the manners, customs and religious values, of their parents. When this process fails and most citizens no longer revere their parents' morality but the morality of convenience (selfish freedom) called modern lifestyle, then the community stops improving its manners, customs and traditions and starts discarding them. And the rot progresses a generation at a time, with each succeeding wave of offspring discarding more manners, customs and traditions, which in turn means showing less restraint, and thus less understanding, than the last generation.
In the absence of permanent norms, as previous restraints are discarded as "ancient texts," citizens find themselves less able to resist their private impulses. With a reduced need to control their urges they become more susceptible to the temptations of conceit, vanity, envy, sloth, rage, lust, greed and fear — and repression and domination to address this fear;  losing not only the ability to control their actions but their thoughts. Hence with each successive generation the character of the citizens becomes increasingly uncontrolled, irresolute and silly. That is the "life style" Friedman cherishes: immorality at its peak. That is what the West has become and what its leaders call, "they hate us for what we are."
David Livingstone has done a commendable job by taking us to the roots of secularism from where it is easy for the readers to connect dots to the schizophrenic calls for going to wars to defend Western civilization. The masses growing interest in Islam is simply for the reason which brought leading Berlin rabbis into the fold of Hitler. If Berlin rabbis could pledge loyalty to moral values of Nazism, it was because they were opposed to decadent Bolshevism and libertinism, as opposed to the left-wing Jews who made up much of the avant garde.
Islam is then Islam. Even in the most exploited form, it is still a far better guide than the Nazi philosophy. Similarly, a majority of Italy's Jews joined Benito Mussolini's Fascist party because they were facing a catastrophic shift in values in the wake of World War I and they opted for Nazi and fascist ideologies to check moral decay. This time around, people are more aware about the alternative in the form of Islam — irrespective of the Muslims' practice to the contrary to its teachings.
On the other hand, the theories of racial and civilizational superiority put forward by the Western commentators and political leaders, in David Livingstone words are "not the rabid ravings of neo-Nazi fanatics. These are the purported sober theories of mainstream intellectuals. However, their claims are no different than the lunacies formerly upheld by Hitler. The only matter that differentiates modern scholars from that scoundrel is the manner in which their ideas were implemented. Nevertheless, how many casualties have resulted from the belligerence of Western nations, who impose their ideology on others out of an arrogance justified by the corrupt view that Europeans have been the leading proponents of human history."
The core reason is that the chief defenders of Western civilization have embraced secularism as a religion. In "The Dying God," Livingstone shows that the much vaunted Western civilization is really the product of an occult tradition that can be traced back to ancient Babylon through Freemasons, Rosicrucians, Templars, Plato and the Cabalists.
Bush, Blair and their supporters' decadence is an affront to the sensibilities of traditional Jews, Christians and Muslims alike. Today Western civilization offers a far graver threat to the religious norms. When Bush hectors the Muslim world on behalf of the Western ideal of freedom, traditional Muslims, Jews and Christians look askance at him. By their standards, what sort of parent is he? Those believing in permanent norms take serious note for less than Bush's twin daughters Barbara and Jenna have done. For example, young Barbara Bush showers in the same-sex bathrooms at Yale with men in the next stall, the New York Post reported on November 3, 2003. Thomas Friedman would consider it "our lifestyle," or a little freedom; whereas many religious Muslims, Jews and Christians consider it total moral bankruptcy. If that is what the the secular bulwarks of Western civilization mean by freedom, most people resisting godlessness will have none of it.
Weimar Republic Berlin became the world's frontier town for sexual experimentation. The same is now lifestyle in the "Western civilization." Democracy can not flourish without the sexual emancipation of women, the liberty to experiment with alternative lifestyles, to depict sexual intercourse in the plastic arts, and so forth. Permissiveness is in the nature of democracy Bush, Blair, Boykin and Pipes are promoting. A passing majority can crush minorities and intimidate opposition. However, this principle applies only to economic and regional minorities, not to sexual minorities.
'The Dying God" explains how secular tradition adopted Lucifer as symbol of mankind's rebellion against God. It enshrines human reason, appetite and will as the ultimate standard of goodness and truth. It usually defines freedom in terms of destroying the moral and social order. Freedom means dissipation not uplift and empowerment. To be a little free is to be a little pregnant. Freedom to terminate pregnancy at will, to terminate adult life at will (right to suicide), and the elimination of all stigma attached to what once was called deviant sexual behavior may have catastrophic social consequences. The world will not survive its experiment with the product of an occult tradition; experiment with liberty, as freedom turns to anomie, self-disgust, and the dwindling of the will to survive.
Livingstone explains how this occult dogma of secularism was secretly adopted by key elites throughout history and was behind the bloody English (1649), American (1776), and French (1789) revolutions. Today's West embodies the program of the Enlightenment. Iindividuals are left to pursue happiness as they see fit so that the elite may go after global domination. There is no way in which the West provides an example that the Muslim world should follow.
Thomas Friedman tells the chief warriors of a war on Islam: "Yes, Bush, you and Blair have kicked off something very big - a war of ideas with, and within, Islam... You are talking about trying to change a whole civilization, whose backward, fanatical elements... now threaten you.”
David Livingstone work shows that a war within the West is more urgently needed for holding it from prostrating to a dead god than a war with and within Islam. All those who claim and believe that they belong to Western civilization must dedicate their remaining life to fighting the denial of reality within and intolerance to others so we can preserve our relations between.
The need is to crack some of the foundation blocks of Western civilization, and weaken the edifice. There is no need to foster rebellion, but just disinterest. We definitely can reduce the awe that the globalists attract, and simply cause people to look elsewhere, elsewhere from mainstream TV, Hollywood, and materialism in general.
Livingstone believe, "we will frustrate the efforts of the globalists merely by turning people's attention away from them." Once it is done, they will then be able to look to higher ideals.
[Author, Abid Ullah Jan’s latest book, The End of Democracy, has just been released in Canada.]
 "A study of History" (1954). Arnold Toynbee , the well known British historian, has responded to this unique phenomenon with the view that all previous civilizations (previous, i.e., to modern western civilization) are either ‘dead’ or ‘moribund’, and that it is not inevitable that western civilization would suffer the fate which attended all previous civilizations (Toynbee: Civilization on Trial, Ox Univ. Press, London, 1957: p.38)
 "The culture of disbelief" (1994)
 "God's Funeral: The Decline of Faith in Western Civilization" (1999)
 "The Death of the West" (2001)
 Thomas Friedman, “Defusing the Holy Bomb,” NY Times, 27 Nov 2002.
 Ibid. Thomas Friedman — quoting Brink Lindsey of the Cato Institute who wrote this in National Review, “Defusing the Holy Bomb,” NY Times, 27 Nov 2002.
 Ken Hanly, “Italian Prime Minister Says Western Civilization Superior to Islamic Civilization The Associated Press September 26, 2001 23:59 UTC. Also see: 11:04 2001-10-02 Racist Berlusconi Pravda.RU:Top Stories:More in detail http://english.pravda.ru/world/2001/10/02/16760.html He told a news conference, "We must be aware of the superiority of our civilization, a system that has guaranteed well-being, respect for human rights and - in contrast with Islamic countries - respect for religious and political rights, a system that has as its values understandings of diversity and tolerance."
 David F. Forte, “War for Civilization: The Islam of Bush, Blair, and Giuliani,” National Review November 1, 2001.
 White House Web site 06 November, 2001, 7:10 A.M EST http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2001/11/20011106-2.html)
 Times, Nov 17, 2003
 THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN, “War of Ideas, Part 1,” NY Times, January 8, 2004
 The European goal was very clearly, yet so mysteriously and ominously, the goal of establishing European rule over the whole world. Toynbee confirmed this in a very candid statement in his famous book, “Civilization on Trial”:
“Western civilization is aiming at nothing less than the incorporation of all of mankind in a single great society and the control of everything in the earth, air and sea …. ” (Ibid. p.166)
 THOMAS FRIEDMAN, “Battle of Islam is as huge as Cold War,” The New York Times, published at Tibnet.com on December 2nd, 2003