Europe's Christian roots and foundation are being replaced by "modern Enlightenment philosophy" says the Pope. Such philosophies recognize only what can be mathematically or scientifically proven, and deny any metaphysical reality. Unable to recognize God's existence or objective truth, morality is consequently reduced to a relative concept, leading to a "confused ideology of freedom that leads to dogmatism" and ultimately "to the self-destruction of freedom," says Pope Benedict. He cited the growing intolerance of the criticism of homosexuality as an example of this phenomenon.
What the Pope offers as an answer to the nihilistic secularism that pervades Europe, and the West, is not politics, but a spiritual renewal based on the powerful example in history of St. Benedict and the amazing cultural impact the Benedictine Order had on a similarly declining Europe in the Middle Ages. Beginning in the 6th century, Benedictine monasteries and spirituality saved Western Europe from a descent into barbarism after the fall of the Roman Empire and subsequently became the continent's main instrument of learning, literature and cultural revival.
The book is divided into three main sections titled: "The Crisis of Cultures"; "The Right to Life and Europe"; "What Does it Mean to Believe?"
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