It is worth considering this fascinating depiction in terms of the ‘eonic effect’ so-called to see that with one exception all these advances correlate with the modern transition and its direct succession! The exception is Gandhi’s non-violence which is perhaps slightly out of place in the overall pattern. The challenge of non-violence should nonetheless be considered but in the larger picture where key advances provoked a need to fight for the future. Notably the Civil War is a reminder that non-violence was not able to overcome slavery. The overall question of progress is thus ambiguous to some degree. But in any case a look at the eonic sequence shows that almost all the key advances in civilization emerge in the context of the eonic effect. And that as the construct of civilization pulls away from a ‘transition’ period, the risk of things falling apart seems to increase. The period of Archaic to classical Greece like the modern case was cluster of advances, but still inside a ambiguous level of ‘civilization’ and that after two centuries beyond the ‘divide’ point 600 BCE or now 1800 AD the system effect wanes and the overall result can regress. The history of occidental civilization after 400 BCE is downhill for centuries as the era of Rome, empire and high barbarism took hold. In fact, Archaic Greece was still in a mixed state and the Greek Enlightenment so to speak was still somewhat feeble.
We should consider the eonic model because with uncanny recurrence two centuries after 1800 see democracy in trouble again, and we need to consider that the fate of ancient regression need not be ours. Suddenly a battle against democracy has arisen from the right. Right on shcedule.
It is a confusing model of history, no doubt, and not as such a science but a way to assess the meaningful dynamic of historical progression..
Mot of what we have so far is a gift. From now on we are one our own.
The question of non-violence is ambiguous: the facts are clear: the elements of modern progress are not keyed in any clear way with non-violence.
Americans are not longer trustworthy agents of progress. The classic American democracy is already corrupt, and we have to wonder if a system now so spoiled has any future cogency? Look at the record. The US has for decades done everything it can to undermine democracy in Latin America, for example. That bodes ill for the future.
Enormous human betterment has occurred since The Enlightenment, chiefly because crusading liberals overcame conservative resistance, time after time. Modern democracy arose because America’s radical founders renounced the divine right of kings and took up arms against England and George III. They created government of the people, with no aristocracy. Slavery ended because radical abolitionists hammered More