Our discussion of Harris today shows the way that historical development can lose the advances of earlier eras. One thing that can help here is to see the way our ‘new era’ model has a shifting directionality focus: we see a form of development that exploits discrete stage transitions, but these are always in a new sector, which assumes the prior stage has diffused evenly into its exteriors. That worked fairly well in ancient times: e.g. the Egyptian culture diffused into Canaan, not far away, and we see that the new creative era built on the old.
But the modern transitions was far away from the center of gravity of Eurasia: something like buddhism never reached Europe. We can see the imbalance being corrected asap in the endphase of the early modern, but the result has always been haunted by the inability of western modernity to really evaluate this aspect of antiquity. In fact buddhism has suddenly achieved success, but we can see that it is still cast in an ancient language. Surely we can come to see the problem and accept this antique diffusion without crippling it with scientism.
We see that scientism is confusing people: it is taken to represent modernity when in fact it is an offshoot and decline. The scope of modernity is far larger, a point apparent in figures such as Kant, whose ‘dialectic’ could encompass a larger range of opposites.