The enlightenment movement of the 18th century began to question the accepted norms of Christendom. They asked the question, “Where do we find truth?” and the Puritans answered by pointing to Heaven. Unsatisfied by this, the enlightenment thinkers answered by pointing everywhere. They pointed to their heads, their hearts, and their bellies.
They laid the groundwork for subjective morality. This would’ve horrified them of course, for even though they were looking for a source of truth other than the Church, at least they were looking for truth.
Our modern generation spurns the idea of rigid morality or standards, and their enlightenment forefathers are rolling in their graves. For even in the 18th century, the burning light of Christendom had not so faded as to extinguish the desire for truth itself.
Finding absolute truth was the quest of the ancients and the medievals alike. Moderns have abandoned this quest, to sit on soft cushions and laugh at truth, all while getting fat on the luxury that truth gave them.
Our most highly esteemed virtue is that of self-expression. And our greatest social cause is to see equality for all forms of expression.
But not a truthful equality rooted in our value as given by God. But a false, selective equality, that elevates certain lifestyles and causes that happen to be in vogue. All the while, suppressing traditional lifestyles and causes that don’t give acceptance or adoration to these things.
The pious priest and the doubting philosopher of the 18th century would gasp in unison if they saw us now.
They would see a world where exclusive claims to truth are considered great crimes. And the enlightened modernist wears the judge’s robe, giving out sentences for a crime they are committing themselves.
Who would have dreamt that the enlightenment would not only give us the horrors of the 20th century but the absurdities of the 21st?