What Happens When We Want the Fruit but Chop the Roots of the Tree?

Last week , I wrote a summary of French atheist Luc Ferry’s acknowledgement of what Christianity has given to the world.  It was refreshing to read an atheist’s acknowledgement of what would be otherwise be unthinkable in the world of ideas if it were not for Christianity:  the universal equality of all persons, and the true democracy and foundation of human rights which flow from that.  And it was commendable on the author’s part.

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I closed with this:  “It is commendable that an atheist philosopher can acknowledge how much we owe the Christian worldview.  But it leaves us with a lingering question.  Doubtless, anyone living in the West enjoys a culture that has received these gifts.  But…   Will we be able to stay in possession of these gifts (the equal dignity and worth of all human beings, for example) when we have refused the Giver?”

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In other words, can we continue to receive nutrition from the fruit after we have hacked away the roots of the tree? What will happen to our civilization if we do?

The Resurrection, El Greco, 1584

The Resurrection, El Greco, 1584

Someone has provided an answer:

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…we know now that the modern world is coming to an end …at the same time the unbeliever will emerge from the fogs of secularism.  He will cease to reap the benefit from the values and forces developed by the very Revelation he denies…  Loneliness in faith will be terrible.  Love will disappear from the face of the public world, but the more precious will be that love which flows from one lonely person to another …the world to come will be filled with animosity and danger, but it will be a world open and clean…  Romano Guardini (1885-1968) from The Lord 
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That right there, is a prophecy.

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