“Dragged along the whole of the Western bourgeois-industrial and Marxist path,” Solzhenitsyn stated to a somewhat stunned Harvard audience in 1978,
A dozen maggots can’t go on and on gnawing the same apple forever; that if the earth is a finite object, then its expanses and resources are finite also, and the endless, infinite progress dinned into our heads by the dreamers of the Enlightenment cannot be accomplished on it . . . All that ‘endless progress’ turned out to be an insane, ill-considered, furious dash into a blind alley. A civilization greedy for ‘perpetual progress’ has now choked and is on its last legs.Only by embracing a transcendent order and the true Creator, Solzhenitsyn argued, can mankind save itself from the follies and murders of the ideologues.
In his famous 1983 Templeton address, he took his arguments against the modern world even further.
Our life consists not in the pursuit of material success but in the quest of worthy spiritual growth. Our entire earthly existence is but a transition stage in the movement toward something higher, and we must not stumble or fall, nor must be linger fruitless on one rung of the ladder . . . The laws of physics and physiology will never reveal the indisputable manner in which the Creator constantly, day in and day out, participates in the life of each of us, unfailingly granting us the energy of existence; when the assistance leaves us, we die. In the life of our entire planet, the Divine Spirit moves with no less force: this we must grasp in our dark and terrible hour.