This essay examines the crisis of contemporary Europe. It argues that common functionalist or essentialist ways of understanding European identity are problematic and suggests a different approach to the question of what Europe is. Its development, it seems, is considerably indebted to two historical events—the death of Socrates and the crucifixion of Christ. For the reflection about these events in the context of European philosophy and Christianity gave rise to a particular discovery of the idea, or vision, of justice itself, of human freedom, and of the limits of worldly politics which has greatly influenced the identity of Europe. The essay further maintains that Europe can preserve its identity and overcome its crisis if it remains reminiscent of this reflection and the moral obligation that is based on it.

Keywords: Europe, Jesus Christ, Justice, Plato.