Culture and Nature

No one who sincerely espoused an attitude worthy of the name “multiculturalism” would ever imagine that multiple cultures — let alone all cultures — could or should coexist under an umbrella of mutual love and acceptance; for this would be to denigrate the very notion of culture. As though the various ways of human living, developed over centuries of survival, poetry, and faith, were nothing more, in the end, than a collection of slightly exotic but perfectly compatible vendors or display booths at a bazaar governed by an overarching convention of peaceful relativism, a convention ultimately superior to all the vendors — and all with their unanimous consent and voluntary subordination, of course. Multiculturalism, as that word is used by its modern democratic egalitarian advocates, means just this: modern democratic egalitarianism imposing itself smugly upon all the world’s alternative customs, making them all compatible with itself by reeducating and effectively trivializing them, reducing the whole world and its history of conflicting and at times contradictory customs to nothing but a series of relativistic counterarguments against the West: “See how many different lifestyles there are? How can we say ours is the true way?”

Thus, in a self-important effort to overcome the supposedly imperialistic hegemony of “Western culture,” Western progressives have invented a new, characteristically absurd form of imperialism: suicidal hegemony. That is the true name and significance of the monster hidden behind the falsely friendly name “multiculturalism.” God in His wisdom chose Canada — the world’s official avatar of false friendliness — as the fountainhead and forerunner of this brave new progressive idea, one which has spread through the modern democratic egalitarian (i.e., Westernized) world like a pandemic.

No wisdom, whether within a man or within a world, is achievable without long and often stressful periods of conflict, tension, hard choices, and self-overcoming. The pseudo-theory of multiculturalism is to political development what the pseudo-theory of self-esteem is to spiritual development, namely a paralyzing poison, a call to give up on the painful desires and difficult decisions of growth in favor of the comforting cocoon of a self-satisfied but ignorant life, followed by a meaningless but painless death.

Either culture is the source of what used to be called human nature, or vice versa. In other words, either human nature is a mere illusion of social custom, or customs are merely alternative attempts to express human nature. If nature is an illusion, then so are reason, being, and truth. If, by contrast, custom is a mere expression, then such expressions are only as valuable as they may be judged as true or beneficial expressions, which is to say to the extent that they answer to the standard of nature, i.e., the standard of reason, being, and truth. That this latter standard is at best only partially accessible even to the very best of us is no argument against its validity, but only a continual challenge to our worthiness in applying it, which in turn implies a permanent reminder of our incompleteness, and hence of the need for philosophical inquiry.

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