20 October 2017

Revolution - III

Authorities are bewildered, heads of institutions try threats and concessions by turns, hoping the surge of subversion will collapse like previous ones. But none of this holds back that transfer of power and property which is the mark of revolution and which in the end establishes the Idea ...

When people feel that accretions and complications have buried the original purpose of an institution, when all arguments for reform have been heard and have failed, the most thoughtful and active decide that they want to be “cured of civilization”.

... The priest, instead of being a teacher, was ignorant; the monk, instead of helping to save the world by his piety, was an idle profiteer; the bishop, instead of supervising the care of souls in his diocese was a politician and businessman ... When people accept futility and the absurd as normal, the culture is decadent.

Jacques Barzun, From Dawn to Decadence