The Dalai Lama goes Humanist


I like the sound of that, but it may be no more than further evidence of my acute wickedness.

I am reminded of these passages from Eric Hoffer’s Working and thinking on the Waterfront:

  • This morning I happened to think of the possibility that a virulent outburst of fanaticism may precede the death of a faith. Southern fanaticism on the issue of slavery was it its height when slavery became untenable, and the same is true of the present segregationist fervor.

  • Something struck me today. Precisely at the moment when the world seems to leap into an unknown future there is an enormous eruption of the past.

I am certain he was right, that he was describing exactly what is happening today — at home and abroad. The old faiths have failed, have become backward-looking instruments of evil because they are innately incompetent to be useful to the world we now occupy, to the lives we live now.

Science has eclipsed the myths.

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