"Economists know that corruption causes poverty," writes Vishal Mangalwadi in Truth and Transformation, "but they lack intellectual framework and spiritual resources to help corrupt nations ask tough cultural questions: Why are the Dutch or the English able to trust each other in a way that the Indians or Egyptians cannot? What makes some cultures more honest, less corrupt, more trustworthy, and therefore more prosperous?"
Mangalwadi contends that the "secret" of the West's success is morality that allows people to trust one another with the kind of trust essential to business and industry.
He says this kind of trust-producing morality is unique to societies having a Christian belief in a rational, personal God who has spoken to humanity through the Bible, clarifying right and wrong, and to whom everyone is equally accountable for their actions.
Mangalwadi believes acceptance of this Truth, and its subsequent application to business and industry, was fundamental to the success of Western economy.
But Mangalwadi's next question is important: "If moral integrity is foundational to prosperity, why don't secular experts talk about it [today]?"
His answer is straightforward: "Economists have lost the secret of the West's success because philosophers have lost the very idea of truth."
"The truth was lost," he says, "because of an intellectual arrogance that rejected divine revelation and tried to discover truth with the human mind alone."
Mangalwadi does a masterful job in Truth and Transformation tracing the connection between failing economies and faulty worldviews.
Mangalwadi's work is particularly relevant to the economic meltdown of 2008, and to real hope for long-term recovery. Simply put, the world experienced a financial meltdown because the West has exchanged the worldview of the Bible for a different worldview. A worldview that is as harmful to the economy in America as Hinduism is to the economy in India: the worldview of Secularism.
Through the philosophy of Western atheists such as David Hume (1711-1776), Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) and Martin Heidegger (1889-1976), the West gradually came to believe that either the God of the Bible does not exist--or is irrelevant (just as debilitating).
Whether God is absent or irrelevant, the effects of Secularism on business and industry are titanic.
Furthermore, Mangalwadi contents, Secularism is leading America down the same road to poverty that Hinduism led India.
Same road as Hinduism?!?