Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Humanitarian with the Guillotine

A splendid excerpt from the book by Isabel Paterson, via Wilson Revolution Unplugged. To quote:
Why did the humanitarian philosophy of 18th-century Europe usher in the Reign of Terror? It did not happen by chance; it followed from the original premise, objective, and means proposed. The objective is to do good to others as a primary justification of existence; the means is the power of the collective; and the premise is that "good" is collective.

The religious orders maintained hospitals, reared orphans, distributed food. Part of such alms was given unconditionally, that there might be no compulsion under the cloak of charity. It is not decent to make a man strip his soul in return for bread. This is the real difference when charity is enjoined in the name of God, and not on humanitarian or philanthropic principles.


alaughland said...

Excellent observation that can be applied to our day and time and current thought.

elena maria vidal said...

I agree!

pml said...

Love it ... thank you for sharing these quotes!! ... enjoy your blog very much!

elena maria vidal said...

Thank you and welcome, pml!