Civilization and Entropy

photo comparing houses

Entropy on the Beach

Civilization is a lot like houses on the beach. You can see from the picture that I took on a recent trip to the beach that houses not maintained tend to decay over time. The dilapidated house stands out especially when the rest of the neighborhood or block has been well maintained, The interesting thing about this is the fact is that the run down house is moving toward the natural state of houses and other things on the beach. The humidity, extra salt, intense sunlight and the radical changes in weather causes things to fall apart. 

 
Our civilization here in America is actually heading towards the natural state of societies. That is, to fall apart. It is very unusual for a civilization to have existed this long. Peaceful existence and prosperity like we have seen here in America for a period of several decades is a special case. If we are not careful to maintain it, it will fall apart as is normal and natural in the world. 
 
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What is Civilization?

English: Newly enfranchised women voting in th...

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I recently heard a presentation by Rabbi Daniel Lapin on WallBuilders Live! He spoke to the question of “What is Civilization?” Lapin asserts that the world today is engaged in a epic struggle between civilization and barbarism. Lapin claims that there is only one civilization. The society built upon the precepts in the Bible. People and society are prone to that third law of thermodynamics otherwise known as entropy. We tend to on our own go toward barbarism as a default state. Only with the civilizing influence of the Biblical principles will we rise from that barbaric inclination.

Some of the defining characteristics of civilization include: respectful treatment of women, private property rights, and sanitation practices. Only in civilized society do women have any place of respect. In barbaric society men relate to women as either hermaphrodites or callous womanizers. In civilized society we find the concept that we can purchase the rights to a particular area of land. In barbaric society we believe that we are simply advanced animals. Animals really have no sense of the ownership of property. Animals only protect their own territory but do not claim it has their own. Communism, socialism and other similar materialistic, humanistic, philosophies denying the place of private property. You can spot marks of civilization by how people deal with waste and filth. In civilization sewage is disposed of safely and properly if you visit an Occupy Wall Street encampment you will quickly see whether you are dealing with civilized people or barbarians.

If you tell legislators they can resolve all teenage problems by painting a blue spot on the left ear of all teenagers, they would implement that policy in short order. However, if you tell legislators you can eliminate virtually all teenage problems by having a strong Bible-based education, they will refuse. They would rather have the problem than that solution. In barbarism there is a primal pleasure that comes with destruction. Many who are in the Occupy Wall Street movement are participating in that wrong minded pleasure. As teachers we want to be part of building up young people and civilized society. According to Lapin (and I tend to agree) the only way to accomplish that end is with Biblically based teaching.