How A National Collapse Begins
It continues to shock me how many writers postulate theories of civilizational or national collapse that propose a physical cause as the reason a decline occurs.
- “All civilizations collapse because of bad economics!” says libertarians and people like Ray Dalio and Mancur Olson.
- “Civilizations collapse because of bad politics!” says Machiavellians and modern leftists.
- “Civilizations collapse because of some biology data we just uncovered!” says the Jim Penman and biohistory/human biodiversity guys.
- “Civilizations collapse because of loss of morals/religion!” says the Boomers and the new guys around the block.
Yet none of these groups, however well-intentioned, seem to realize the most basic realization of all regarding national collapse. This realization is simple: If you can see or study a physical ailment, then the decline is already occurring.
The true collapse must have already started before the physical component is even noticeable. The physical symptom cannot be the illness, because it is the symptom.
Something else had to have already degenerated to allow that physical illness to rise to the surface enough for us to see it.
- Bad economics definitely contributes to an increasingly faster collapse. But fiscal policy did not start the fall. Most of the libertarian types preferred the fiscal environment of the early Americas. What changed to allow the economic environment to change?
- Bad politics definitely leads to stupid laws and hilarious absurdities during a decline, but it does nothing to begin the process. Why were the leaders once decent, but now they are bad? What actually changed?
- Biological changes in a population are immensely harmful, especially when they stem from massive immigration. In many cases, it is the death knell for civilizations. But it does not start the fall. Usually, mass immigration is a very late-stage physical ailment of a declining nation. It does nothing at its beginning. Something else changes that weakens the homogeneous nation to allow immigrants in the first place.
- The same goes for morals and religion—Once a moral decline happens, the fall has already been underway for quite some time. Morality is downstream of the prevailing soul/culture of a people. It can only reflect what the people allow it to reflect.
There are three essentials that make up societies: nation (people), system, and soul. The origin of the decline is found in the last one: the national soul. The system (or in this case, systems) can only change if the soul degrades first. There is a spiritual nature to all things that lead the physical.
- The collective soul of the people must be changed to a more wicked version to shift the morality, which we can then see with declining rates of religiosity and changing moral positions.
- The collective soul of the men must be weakened to an effeminate and apathetic condition to allow migrants to flood in with no pushback.
- The collective soul must be trampled on and subjugated or made to feel inferior/needing authority to permit bad leaders instead of harshly dealing with them.
- The collective soul must be made greedy, covetous, abundant, and/or entitled to allow the economic environment to degenerate, which can then be quantifiably studied.
Nation-states start the decline with the soul of their people. Their collective soul is altered from what it once was, regardless of the unique conditions (biology, heritage, blood, and on) that built it in the first place. This soul then degenerates through various mechanisms, which is what produces the beginning of the political collapse of nations and states.
Everything else is a physical ailment—a noticeable symptom—of this bedrock collapse. The people’s own spiritual nature itself changes. Our soul is even more than just beliefs, goals, desires, mindset, outlook, faith, trust, hopes, understanding of the world, feelings, intellect, and on and on. It is the animating force that directs us. It encompasses and expands off of each of these particular characteristics of the heart/mind/spirit. This is imperative to understand.
George MacDonald once said: “You don’t have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.”
The exact same applies for nation-states. A nation does not have a soul. The nation is a soul. They have a state/governing systems/country/etc. Just like how you grow, evolve, and change, so to do nation-states. But the inverse is true as well: since we can devolve, so can nation-states.
Just like as humans, this is not a linear line. The more degenerate we are, the faster we fall even further. It increases as the condition gets worse. Consider a drug junkie. The individual does not start off completely lost and immediately jumps into Kensington Ave condition. They start off normal, get a little rough over time, gradually reach a major tipping point, and then nosedive from that point. This is why America has gotten so much rougher over the past three decades, while the pace seemed much more moderate in the past. It is because we are in the nosedive point right now.
As Christians, we believe that the souls of men last forever. The national soul is the collective soul (emergent, not reductionist) of the individuals that reside within that nation.
God judges nations by this collective soul all throughout the Bible. He did it constantly with Israel. This should not be negated or overlooked. Israel’s soul changed, which caused the physical ailments (such as idol worship or eating in an unclean fashion), that then invoked God’s wrath and punishment.
If modern materialists lived back then, they would postulate that the decline arose because the Israelites had too much meat for dinner or spent too much money on golden idols. But that would be (hilariously) wrong. It completely misses the point, just like how they miss the greater picture even today. It is a spiritual decline first, then the physical symptoms arise.
The national collapse starts with the spirit and ends with the physical results. Until more people recognize this, they will keep being led astray by secular materialist theories. Trying to cure or prevent one physical symptom (economics, biology, public morality, etc.) will do nothing to stop the degeneration of the soul. The collapse will still occur, just using different pathways.
What we are seeing now is not the beginning (or even the intermediate stage) of the American decline, but the late stage. The symptoms prove that we have had this illness for a long time.
That spiritual disease just laid dormant for a while, but now we are quickly becoming terminally septic.
Read Next: Oswald Spengler: The Decline of the West and Rationalism
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