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Myth as a Mirror of Conflict and Violence - Essay Example
Pages 10 (2510 words)
Contrary to the thought that "diversity brings with it political instability and the likelihood of violence" (Bowen, 3-14), conflict and violence have plagued mankind since the beginning of time even inside societies which have not been diverse, where at one point violence filled the earth so much that, inside the mythology of Hebrew, God had to wipe it off of the face of the earth (Genesis 6:7)…
For the first century and a half of our national existence, our relations with the people of the Middle East were largely beneficent and protective, not withstanding our conflict with the Barbary Pirates in North Africa. But Islamic civilization was on a downward trajectory that could not be arrested. Its social and economic structures, its values, its neglect of education, its lack of scientific curiosity, the indolence of its ruling classes and its inability to produce a single modern state that served its people all guaranteed that, as the West's progress accelerated, the Middle East would fall ever farther behind. The Middle East has itself to blame for its problems. Conflict and violence are common concerns to whether it was the story of Cain Killing Abel, the start of World Wars I and II or the Trojan War and The War of the Spartans. As a result of the influence of myth, these cultures have used violence as a means of resolving conflict. For the myth makes war palatable. It gives war a logic and sanctity it does not possess. It saves us from peering into the darkest recesses of our own hearts. And this is why we like it. It is why we clamor for myth. ...