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'The origin of this book lay in the mood of deep depression into which I fell at the end of 1992 ... It was a despondency about the failure of belief in the things which had buoyed me up throughout my fourscore years and ten. It was not so much that I did not still hold them sacred in my own heart. It seemed to me that they were actually being obliterated from the operating motivation of mankind.'
At this moment of spiritual crisis, Lord Hailsham forced himself to examine from first principles his own beliefs and contrast them with the modern 'operating motivation of mankind' as he sees it. To do so he called upon all the considerable intellectual and spiritual resources he could muster.
This short book - passionate, lucid and humane - is the result. It summarizes his philosophy, but it is written from the heart; it is intended not as a lament, but as an affirmation. To publish such a work at the age of eighty-seven is testimony to the power of wisdom in old age.
The book is presented in a facsimile of Lord Hailsham's own handwriting, as he presented it in manuscript to the publishers.