Why the West has 'won'.

Anton Sherwood (dasher@netcom.com)
Tue, 5 Aug 1997 18:42:26 -0700

Sarah Marr writes
: Has anybody read any well though out, cogently argued and evidentially
: supported theories as to why technology, commerce, exploration, science,
: etc. developed in the West (and East) whilst the African sub-continent
: remained isolated and communites there relied on gatherer-hunter activities
: and basic agriculture?
: I'm sure I read somewhere that the Christian concept of God had a lot
: to do with it, since it includes the concept of free agency of the
: individual: a freedom for self-achievement which is itself a form
: of worship. But then, the Chinese invented gunpowder, etc. without
: Christianity. Equally, the civilizations of the Roman and Greek empires
: were founded before Christianity.

I've seen slightly better (imho) argument. While most of the world
was pantheist or polytheist, Christians are monotheist and the Chinese
concept of god was less personal. If a polytheist's experiment fails,
he can try asking a different god for help; a monotheist, deist or
atheist knows that there's only one Natural Law for everybody.

(Socrates, if I understand right, was a monotheist.)

Anton Sherwood *\\* +1 415 267 0685 *\\* DASher@netcom.com