By Eliot, Thomas Stearns

Two lengthy essays: “The proposal of a Christian Society” at the path of spiritual idea towards feedback of political and monetary structures; and “Notes in the direction of the Definition of tradition” on tradition, its that means, and the hazards threatening the legacy of the Western world.

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We may go further and ask whether what we call the culture, and what we call the religion, of a people are not different aspects of the same thing: the culture being, essentially, the incarnation (so to speak) of the religion of a people. To put the matter in this way may throw light on my reservations concerning the word relation. As a society develops, a greater number of degrees and kinds of religious capacity and function-as well as of other capacities and functions-will make their appearance.

We may go further and ask whether what we call the culture, and what we call the religion, of a people are not different aspects of the same thing: the culture being, essentially, the incarnation (so to speak) of the religion of a people. To put the matter in this way may throw light on my reservations concerning the word relation. As a society develops, a greater number of degrees and kinds of religious capacity and function-as well as of other capacities and functions-will make their appearance.

But one of the features of development, whether we are taking the religious or the cultural point of view, is the appearance of scepticism-by which, of course, I do not Christianity and Culture mean infidelity or destructiveness (still less the unbelief which is due to mental sloth) but the habit of examining evidence and the capacity for delayed decision, Scepticism is a highly civilised trait, though, when it declines into pyrrhonism, it is one of which civilisation can die. Where scepticism is strength, pyrrhonism is weakness: for we need not only the strength to defer a decision, but the strength to make one.

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