The Cult of Non-procreative Self-gratification

Mark Steyn makes some observations about post-religious societies. Here a quote:

… what’s at issue is … whether [casual sex is] an appropriate organising principle for society. Or at any rate whether a cult of non-procreative self-gratification is, as the eco-crazies like to say, “sustainable”.

… Frank Field made [some remarks] at a Centre for Policy Studies seminar last week. The subject under debate was poverty and social disintegration, and pondering the collapse of civility in modern Britain Mr Field gave seven reasons. Number One, he said, was the decline of religion.

At that point, many Britons will simply have tuned out for the remaining six, and the more disapproving ones will be speculating darkly on whether, like yours truly and other uptight squares, he has “casual sex” issues. Religion is all but irrelevant to public discussion in the United Kingdom, and you’d have to search hard for an Anglican churchman prepared to argue in public, as Mr Field does, that material poverty derives from moral poverty.

But the point is: he’s not wrong. There aren’t many examples of successful post-religious societies. And, if one casts around the world today, one notices the two powers with the worst prospects are the ones most advanced in their post-religiosity. Russia will never recover from seven decades of Communism: its sickly menfolk have a lower life expectancy than Bangladeshis; its population shrinks by 100 every hour, and by 0.4 per cent every year, a rate certain to escalate as the smarter folks figure it’s better to emigrate than get sucked down in the demographic death spiral.

And then, of course, there’s the European Union.

Of course, his observations are empirical, but interesting nonetheless.

Righteousness exalts a nation, But sin is a reproach to any people. (Prov. 14:34, NKJV)

The Cult of Non-procreative Self-gratification

One thought on “The Cult of Non-procreative Self-gratification

  1. John says:

    I tend to agree with the basic hypothesis. However, he missed the big one – the big post-religious country, the big superpower, the big country. China. And it doesn’t fit his story.

    And perhaps that’s partly because it’s actually created a secular religion for itself, the same religion that China has had for a very long time – China. The doctrines have changed to Maoist communism, but the theme is very similar.

    pax et bonum

Comments are closed.