British institutions are all too-big, waaay too big (except when they are collapsing - and begging to be taken-over by the state management).
This has happened especially over the past couple of decades. All UK universities have quadrupled in size or more - and the teaching classes within them have trebled (more buildings of all types - except for teaching facilities!). Hospitals likewise; schools, and pretty much everything. Professions (law, medicine, academics, scientists, bishops!...) have trebled or more, with massive decline in motivation and vocation and ability; and become permeated with part-timers who regard themselves primarily as for-hire functionaries.
Too may people indifferent, alienated, uninvolved.
The world is vast and mediocre - and always the shadow reality of bureaucracy.
Well, on the other side the previous state of affairs was far from perfect, and could never be really satisfactory; people could never really be satisfied by life as part of an institution - even a small, self-governing and elite.
Smaller is indeed more-beautiful; but a small village, college, school, factory, nation... is not really beautiful in any unqualified fashion.
Still all that has gone and we are left bereft - we are on-our-own now (most of us); life is a matter of gigantic bureaucracies (wo-)manned by mediocre drones and our-selves.
So be it; this is the hand we have been dealt; this is the world we must live-in like it or not.
That self needs to be found, sustained, strengthened; and not by institutional means by by direct contact with the divine - that's what we must do if we want anything other than a life dedicated to obliterative hedonism and distraction.
And, come to think on it; that it very likely what we ought to be doing anyway!
Not that this life is or ought to be solitary - but that 'soceity' is not going to support, but rather to subvert and corrupt, anything Good and creative that we are trying to do.
The mind is free: thinking is free - so long as it is our real and divine mind; and that mind is intrinsically creative; and we need to revel-in and explore that freedom, and be our own judges and enjoyers of the genuine creativity which eventuates from such living.
In this instance (and not by accident) what we must do and what we need to do are coincident.
To do that, every person would have to become, first, a Wilsonian outsider. and then struggle to find a way forward, cross the abyss, and find that the answer was God all along. That is a hard ask of most people. It will not happen. What we can rely on is that God will answer the anguished cry to him when there is real suffering. Very many people, including those who think of themselves as atheists, cry out to God instinctively when they feel all hope is gone. It is at these moments that there is sudden honesty and clarity. People know that there is a God, even if for a moment only. Forever afterwards, even when 'the real world' kicks in again, people who have cried out to God in terror, never really fully disbelieve again.
@JW - If that happens - that's great. But it doesn't happen very often nowadays.
The other thing is that this blog is mostly read by Outsider types, otherwise they wouldn't read it. At any rate, it is such people that I feel the need to address.
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