Interview of F. Forrester Church:
Church: "Lord Acton said that every institution - and I would say, every individual, too - is finally destroyed by an excess of its own first principle. So each of us has to be wary and mindful of our own first principles wherever we're sure we're right."
(Every Chinese dynasty, including the current one, is an example of this process.)
Church: "My own definition of religion is that it's our human response to the dual reality of being alive and having to die... When another person is dying, or a loved one has died, it's like a blast of fresh air that blows all the dust off your own desk, and makes all of your own petty grievances and pride and anger and bitterness and envy meaningless. You remember that this is basically the bond, this mortar of mortality that binds us fast to one another... And therefore, we are one."