Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Back to the earth, getting it partly right

Francis Schaeffer Pollution and the Death of Man ch. 2
...the hippies of the 1960s did understand something. They were right in fighting the plastic culture, and the church should have been fighting it too... More than this, they were right in the fact that the plastic culture - modern man, the mechanistic worldview in university textbooks and in practice, the total threat of the machine, the establishment technology, the bourgeois upper middle class - is poor in its sensitivity to nature... As a utopian group, the counterculture understands something very real, both as to the culture as a culture, but also as to the poverty of modern man's concept of nature and the way the machine is eating up nature on every side.
Today, the back to the earth movement is big business where conspicuous consumption of the right kind is mistaken for sensitivity to nature.

At the same time, the back to the earth movement could not be big business if not for this a radical shift back towards nature, i.e. back to human scale. And there in, in that shift is our hope for a better future for our society.

The real way back is separating ourselves from materialism, and recognizing our nature fully. As Catholics we have the advantage of knowing ourselves according to our nature as well as having a counter cultural tradition which shuns materialism in all its virulent forms.

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