Though sixteen civilizations may have perished already to our knowledge, and nine others may be now at the point of death, we - the twenty-sixty - are not compelled to submit the riddle of our fate to the blind arbitrament of statistics. The divine spark of creative power is still alive in us, and, if we have the grace to kindle it into flame, then the stars in their courses cannot defeat our efforts to attain the goal of human endeavor.
The cause of the breakdowns of civilizations is not to be found in loss of command over the human environment, as measured by the encroachment of alien human forces... The most that an alien enemy has achieved has been to give an expiring suicide his coup de grace.
Neither race nor environment, taken by itself, can be the positive factor which, within the last six thousand years, has shaken humanity out of its static repose on the level of primitive society and started it on the hazardous quest of civilization.
Apathy can be overcome by enthusiasm, and enthusiasm can only be aroused by two things: first, an ideal which takes the imagination by storm, and second, a definite intelligible plan for carrying that ideal into practice.