The Next Great Awakening

History would seem to warrant the generalization that periods of great intellectual and spiritual activity have been preceded by periods of exploration and discovery, of invention and of expanding commerce; that is, by extraordinary material development. The law of growth for the individual seems to be also the law for the nation—first the physical, then the mental and moral; or, as Paul puts it, first that which is natural, then that which is spiritual.

The nineteenth century was characterized by a material development altogether marvelous and scarcely less than miraculous. It has left to us the heritage of a more of less refined materialism and of an intense commercialism. The question arises whether in the twentieth century, as in earlier ages, the great advance along physical lines is to be followed by a new advance along intellectual and spiritual lines.

The Lectures
June 13, 1901

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