4. An ancient and terrible spell

“The new nihilism means humanity being given over to an ancient and terrible spell...”

This simply refers to the curse of usury, referred to in the Arabic of the Qur’an as riba. Evidence for the prohibition against the crime of usury, as the most heinous and socially inhumane form of corruption, goes back to the oldest civilisations for which written records remain. Plato and Aristotle were unequivocal in their condemnation; the ancient Hebrews denounced it as neshek (the ‘bite’); the early Church Fathers reviled it; Dante consigns the usurers to the eighth circle of hell. The ancient spell guarantees wealth and power, and modern banking is the technological utterance of that primal diabolical promise: renounce the soul and gain the world.