The first step was Western people abandoning Christianity - from the top (most educated, high status, powerful) people on downwards. Abandoning by dilution (liberal Christianity, Christian socialism, socially-orientated nonconformism etc), and by increasing adoption of atheism (aka agnosticism).
A society that saw the world as created, purposive and having objective meaning for every person - and was ultimately orientated towards eternity; was replaced by a society that saw the world as a mixture of accidents and determinism - and only acknowledged meaning and purpose the span of mortal life, and the reality of the material/ measurable/ perceptible world.
It became mainstream, normal, and mandatory in the public sphere to regard life as (at bottom, in reality) a matter of subjective personal emotions on an axis of pleasure and suffering. Therefore, there could be no real idea of progress, of positive change - either for individuals or for society as a whole. Everything was necessarily known to be adrift...
The abandoning of Christianty as primary, was therefore - also and necessarily - an abandonment of long-term (strategic) purpose.
But if everything was adrift - how come the drift was always towards atheism and the political Left? (Such that the most 'Right wing' mainstream political parties today are far to the Left of the most ardent socialists of seventy years ago. But so rapid is this drift now that we can see it over a timescale of just a few years.)
So that we have a literally insane society that has lost the capacity to speak, apparently even to think, with any coherence about anything? (No matter how urgent and important.) Yet we never significantly drift out of this insanity, but always deeper in.
By my understanding, if drift was genuinely the whole story, the overall movement would have been random - back-and-forth or zig-zags - but not overall directional.
If people, and especially the most educated, high status and powerful people) are indeed adrift on the tides - bobbing-around without organisation or direction; then what is it that has ensured that the tide is always receding?
This is where the demonic comes-in. If we assume that there are such creatures as demons - supernatural and eternal beings who oppose God, love and creation; and are working in that net-direction; then it becomes reasonable to suppose that as men abandoned Christ and saw themselves as arbitrary bundles of short-lived emotions, then demonic power would become decisive.
As we lost the overall Christian purpose and direction and began to drift, then the overall demonic purpose would necessarily and increasingly dominate (because there was no other).
If demons indeed have a thumb in the scales, tipping them always towards their anti-Christian, anti-Good agenda - then there could be no concerted opposition to this from the drifting of Modern Man. Each Man would see his situation as drifting, yet the tide would always be receding.
The patterns on the surface of the sea might include faster movement with the tide, or short counter-movement against the tide; but at the end of each generation the range of surface movements would have receded a bit further as the tide ebbed.
There have been, it seems likely, different kinds of demons dominant at different points in world history. And the kind that have become increasingly dominant throughout modernity have been termed the Ahrimanic.
Ahrimanic demons are those whose evil is organised, systematic, bureaucratic, materialistic, totalitarian. The evil is cold, humanity-denying, objective, spirit-denying, quantitative (and quality-denying).
(These are not the only kind of demons. For example, others inflame lust, sadism, spite, pride, gluttony etc. But it is the Ahrimanic type that are now by-far the most powerful and least recognised. Unrecognised probably because they have not often or recently been dominant for human society - it was the Industrial Revolution - with its division of labour, massive expansion of trade and technological innovations - that created a situation in which the Ahrimanic could thrive.)
The demonic thumb of this type is what has been pressing-down on all forms of social organisation, as well as upon individual modern Men, with increasing strength for the past two centuries. Such demons have affected all forms and types of organisation - including the Christian churches - so that our world experience is nowadays of encroaching and tightening bureaucracy.
Bureaucracy is evil intrinsically, and it tends towards greater bureaucracy and greater evil. It is - I suggest - the primary weapon of the main type of demons that are both the most influential, and simultaneously the least detected and opposed, in these modern times.
The demonic thumb is mostly experienced as the pressure of bureaucratic, System-atic, humanity-denying organisation; and until this is known as evil we will remain helpless to resist the Leftward tidal drift; even if we are (currently) Christians.