"Swing Vote," Tytler, Faith, & Bondage


My wife and I watched the movie "Swing Vote" the other night. It was okay, but about 20 minutes too long.  There are other political comedies that are worth your time. The best part of the movie was soundtrack, which featured both Marshall Tucker Band, Moby, and Kevin Costner's side project Modern West...  Talk about an interesting mix!

Any way, this quote from the movie jumped out:
"All the world's great civilizations have followed the same path. From bondage to liberty, from liberty to abundance, from abundance to complacency, from complacency to apathy, from apathy back to bondage. If we are to be the exception to history, then we must break the cycle, for those who do not remember the past are condemned top repeat it." 

The quote is a modification of the "Tytler Cycle" named for Alex Tytler, a Scottish historian.  The original is:
"The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been two hundred years. These nations have progressed through this sequence: From bondage to spiritual faith; from spiritual faith to great courage; from courage to liberty; from liberty to abundance; from abundance to selfishness; from selfishness to complacency; from complacency to apathy; from apathy to dependence; from dependency back again into bondage."
It's interesting to note the steps between bondage and liberty, namely spiritual faith and courage.  In America, we tend to spiritualize our politics and politicize our faith. Neither approach is useful. The first assigns too much importance its subject while the latter weakens its.

A person's faith is the determining factor in every step they take.  They may have faith in Christ, Mohammed, Self, Money, the White House, or any number of things.  If a person's faith is well, "faithful" then it will determine every step.

In Tyler's view, it is faith that provided the steps out of bondage.  What will be your step our of bondage.

Comments

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