No. It is not. Why? For a number of reasons: 1) Because the West does not believe in the brotherhood of men, 2) Because its religious and cultural life is in shambles, 3) Because (Max Mueller says) while the Western man is born active, the Eastern man is meditative and reflective, 4) Because while the kingdom of God is outside the Western man, it is within the Eastern man.
Western dualism began with the Greek belief that their God stood above the world and directed it. To the Greeks spirit (God) was active, and matter, passive. This false theory has of late been rejected. Spirit, scientists say, and matter (mass) are the same. There is no substance, the Buddha had said 2,500 years ago. For 2,000 years, the West held on to its beliefs with disastrous consequences to the evolution of humanity.
The Eastern image of the divine was of a principle that controlled everything from within. To wit, the atom was revealed to contain Light, Sound, Heat and Movement when it was exploded for the first time in 1945. Indian philosophy reached its apogee of Advaita-non-dualism?even in the Vedic Age.
Newton made the separation of matter and spirit the basis of classical physics. Naturally, it led to the creation of an all-powerful monarchic God. All the Semitic faiths followed this belief.
The mechanical conception of the world was, however, found wanting. By the time of the Age of Reason, people began to question the need for God himself in a mechanical world. Nietzche said God was dead.
With the advent of the Quantum and Relativity theories, the two basic theories of modern physics, the old mechanical world of Newton had to be abandoned. In other words almost the entire scientific past had to go.
This is what Aurobindo meant when he talked of the evolutionary failure of Western civilisation. And it has continued to act as a powerful agent of disaster and oppression throughout the world, says Albert Schweitzer, the philosopher. Why? Because the God of the West continues to sit on high and direct the world! The West refuses to go with scientific findings.
How do you explain this failure? According to scientist Fitj of Capra, Western civilisation is male dominated. The female principle is absent. Western societies have gone for individualism, not integration; analysis, not synthesis; rationalism, not intuition; competition, not cooperation. This one-sided development has reached a crisis of social, ecological, moral and spiritual dimension. That is why the West can no longer lead the humanity.
And yet with the demise of the socialist system, there was a feeling of triumph of the Western system. It was said that it had come to stay. But they were wrong. History never comes to an end. In fact, very soon, the Islamic world was in revolt against the West. Islamists say they have an ?unfinished business?, namely the conversion of the world into Islam. He asserts that if you do not accept Islam, you are standing in the way of history.
There is no exit from the trauma of history, says Samuel Huntington. He thinks the West has gone weak because of its cultural suicide and political disunity. These weaknesses have become manifest in anti-social behaviour, drug abuse, violence, decay of family ties, high divorce rates, illegitimate births, teenage pregnancies, weakening of work culture, personal indulgences, decreasing commitment to learning and intellectual activity.
What still drives Western societies is their insatiable desire for material things. So, desires keep multiplying and man'scapacity to satisfy them fall behind. But did not the Buddha warn that desire is at the source of human misery? He did. But it fell on deaf ears. On the deaf ears of Hindus and Buddhists, too.