Friday, August 26, 2016

Glubb's 'Fate of Empires' points to a not-so vague premonition for our own nation

Every now and then you run across something so astonishing that you just have to share. This is one of those moments. Here's an AMAZING 24-page research essay that's an extremely briefer comparison to Gibbon's multi-volume Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, yet much more expansive in world historical terms, and should certainly serve as a warning shot over the bow (or perhaps I should say stern) of our own ship's misguidance...

by Sir John Glubb
1976
JourneyOfTheMind: The Fate of Empires is a brief essay laying out the life cycle of an empire. An empire is defined as a super power of their time. He brings examples ranging from Persia, Ancient China, to the Ottoman Empire. In fact, all of his evidence is from eras other than our own era, which makes sense when writing something like this. This read is a basic read, and should be taught to everyone.

The average lifespan of an empire is 250 years. The life cycle of an empire is broken down into six ages. They are:
  1. The Age of Pioneers
  2. The Age of Conquest
  3. The Age of Commerce
  4. The Age of Affluence
  5. The Age of Intellectualism
  6. The Age of Decadence

YouTuber The Immortal presented a great review of the paper back in February of this year:
A review of Sir John Glubb's The Fate of Empires: Search For Survival. A historical examination of the lifespan of nation states and the markers of growth and decline.


Glenn Beck also had a stimulating discussion on Glubb's paper during Thursday's program @ 1:01:00 (among other interesting topics before & after):
This is a guy who's written a lot of really fascinating stuff on history, and what he decided to do was look at all of the empires that have risen and fallen and then look at the cycle of each empire to see if there's anything you can learn. So he went Persia, ancient China, the Ottoman Empire, he went the Roman Empire, Greece, everything. And he looked at all of them and said, 'Ok, so what do they have in common?' The one thing they all have in common, they lasted anywhere from 200 to 250 years. All of them collapsed within 50 years of each other. ... You look at this, and what he found is that there is ten generations that live in every empire. And you can cut these generations and the span of an empire up into six different categories... Now tell me that this doesn't fit us...
Now, as to avoid misleading, this isn't an observation on completely ceasing to exist. Yes, several of these falls do result in utter collapse and erasure. More interestingly though, in several cases, Greece, Spain, Russia, England, even Italy (Rome), remnant, centralized civilizations persist, but are forever fundamentally transformed in not only their sphere of influence and innovation or vast scope of exuberance and reach, but also in their inherent culture and their people. Arguably, many still struggle to maintain a national identity with newer cycles of Glubb's stages continuing to roll over them. Perhaps it is the fundamental transformation that gives pause to the most immediate consideration in correlation to our own nation's future. And like Rome and others, it's not just about the powers that be, but the people within that give way to internal demise and external strife...
JotM: The age of decadence is the decay of the empire. It is characterized by defensive minded militaries, decaying morals, loss of religion, frivolous consumption of food, entertainment, sex, and the complete focus of individual interests. When things tend to get rough, it would be thought that the people would work together to fix the problems, but instead there are schisms in the society that make the resolution of dire problems impossible. With everyone thinking about themselves, they lack the self-sacrifice and courage needed to defend themselves from collapse internally or from the next age of pioneers.

It is pretty obvious that The United States, the world’s super power, is in the last and final stage, the age of decadence. When just looking at our practices, it becomes clear that our morals have completely collapsed... When debating politics, people constantly look at how their interests are affected rather than taking into account the needs of other people. Sex is the main theme or method of selling products or services... We consume frivolously on drugs, food (obesity), sex, and entertainment. We worship celebrities rather than a God or religion. This all points to a society that is on a verge of collapse.

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