Power is a poison well known for thousands of years. If only no one were ever to acquire material power over others! But to the human being who has faith in some force that holds dominion over all of us, and who is therefore conscious of his own limitations, power is not necessarily fatal. For those, however, who are unaware of any higher sphere, it is a deadly poison. For them there is no antidote.
If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?
I didn’t want to say too much in these quote posts because I was hoping to save it all up for my book review, but my goodness, I’m only 200 pages in and I’ve already had 2 quote posts that my commentary could have filled one of my regular reviews. So why save it all up for the future?
People who acknowledge no higher power than themselves are the most dangerous people ever. No matter how good intentioned they might claim to be, or think themselves to be, power is poison. The problem is, in their death throes, they can destroy a whole country or even a civilization. That is why Ideas DO Matter, no matter how grandfatherly or benevolent the messenger might appear.
That second quote goes up squarely against the idea that humanity is evolving into some sort of better ideal. If people can’t, or won’t, acknowledge that evil exists, not just as a metaphysical idea, but as a concrete thing within themselves and within others, then you end up with Hitlers, or in the case of this book, Stalins. As bad as Hitler was, the more I’m reading here, the more I’m beginning to think that Stalin was one of the worst mass murderers the world has ever not acknowledged.
At the time of this post I’m only 36% into the book. It is tough going and I’m taking it slow. I was hoping to get it done by the end of the month but I don’t think that is going to happen now. More people need to read this and see what happens when people give up responsibilities and rights for security.