The Right Side of History: How Reason and Moral Purpose Made the West Great 1

What’s in it for me? A conservative’s hymn to the West.

The typical Westerner enjoys both a comfortable life and the freedom of living in a democratic society – privileges which seemingly are taken for granted. Why are people so unhappy? Why does so much of modern life seem infused with anger? Why is it that Clinton and Trump supporters don’t just disagree but seem to actively distrust and hate each other? And why is there so much anger in public life that the author, an Orthodox Jew, is accused of being a neo-Nazi by some on the left, and is sent anti-semitic abuse by others?

Too many people seem to have bought into the idea that the West is something damaging or shameful, and not a huge force for good in the world. These blinks take a step back and explore the philosophical foundations of the West, and its focus on moral purpose, reason, scientific discovery and individual liberty.

The author reminds us that the West’s success is built on the twin foundations of Jerusalem and Athens – the Bible and the hugely influential thoughts of the ancient Athenian philosophers. He also argues that societies which stray from this dual philosophical legacy are not to be desired.

In these blinks, you’ll learn

  •  how the Bible gave us the concepts of human equality and free will;
  •  why true happiness is about moral purpose; and
  •  why the French Revolution was a disaster.

 

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