Christianity is not and never was a Western religion.

It is a commonplace with historians that empires wax and wane; they have their day and pass away. Historians notice that in their earlier days, great people tend to be vigorous and enterprising, not particularly scrupulous where their own interests are concerned, ready to tread down any who stand in their way. Such people usually have a comparatively simple lifestyle and high moral standards in such areas as sex.

But changes take place. Days come for a civilization or empire when there is not much vigor or enterprise. While there may still be a readiness to tread down opposition there is the lack of the ability to do this. The simple lifestyle has long since gone and so have the simple values and the moral standards. Religions wane. There is a general declension from the high standards of earlier days.

Much of this is all too plainly evident in Western countries these days. The vigor of, say, the colonial era, has gone; and while there is certainly a good deal of enterprise in some areas of life there is also a loss of confidence and an absence of a sense of purpose. There is also a marked lack of capacity. Countries which in earlier days would have dispatched a gunboat without a second thought must now submit to injury as well as insult. Vietnam and Iran have taught us that even the greatest of modern powers may find it difficult to achieve their aims. Of course, a sufficiently unscrupulous approach may still accomplish things, as the Russian intrusion into Afghanistan indicates. But it is not easy to envisage the Western democracies as proceeding by similar means.

There is advance here as well as decline. It is good that at least in a considerable part of the world there ...

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