Marlowe's Shade

Friday, August 05, 2005

Death-Urge in the West

A strong case can be made that Europe is losing its ability to thrive, not only culturally, but even biologically. And the US doesn't seem to be too far behind. What could be causing this existential free-fall?

Spengler has been harping on this theme for a while now, and this time he's put some numbers together to back up his assertion that secular populations inevitably dwindle. He sees the predominance of atheism and relativistic values as a primary cause, and I tend to agree. But European culture has taken a turn for the macabre that goes beyond sterile secularism.

Eight years ago it was reported that 8% of infant deaths in Holland were due to lethal injection, long before the Groningen Protocols were suggested. While some in Europe still have the capacity to be shocked by infanticide, the Dutch don't seem to be among them. And there is no rational explanation for this recent horror in a French morgue.

If the reader will recall, there was a different kind of outrage that took place in France's morgues two years ago, when the cadavers of the elderly piled up, victims of a brutal heat wave. The problem was the younger relatives of the deceased that were unwilling to interrupt their lengthy summer vacations to claim the bodies.

Spengler has pointed out that the failure of Europeans to maintain steady population levels is due to a resistance to the self-sacrifice required to give birth to and raise children. I think it's fair to say that secular Europe has become a cult of self in the spiritual vacuum its thought leaders have created. What's difficult to connect is how this culture of malignant narcissism morphs into morbid symptoms such as euthanasia, infanticide, anti-Semitism and self-loathing.

I propose that there is a death-urge in operation in Europe and in the leftist elite of the US. It is somewhat similar to Freud's concept of Thanatos, but I don't agree with his Buddhist-like conception of it balancing the sex drive.

Outside of a Judeo-Christian ethical system, it is certainly difficult to explain the connection of the death-urge to narcissism. These traditional values focused the individual not on oneself but directed one's service to others, and devotion to God. Anything else fell under a rubric that more than ever is an object of the world's ridicule, that of sin. And as outdated as this concept is considered, it does directly address the madness that is gripping the West: "The wages of sin is death..."
papijoe 7:25 AM