EU remainers like to point to a common European culture, one represented by Dante, Shakespeare, Goethe and the like, and claim that leavers are rejecting this noble heritage for an insular little Britain attitude. Maybe some people are like that, maybe even a lot are since it can't be denied that the attitude exists and leave voters are a mixed bunch which is probably both their strength (in that they won) and their weakness (in that they may not have that much common ground). But the point is the EU is not Europe. Its long term purpose is and always has been to create a Federal Republic of Europe with all power centralised in a heavily bureaucratic transnational body while national parliaments exist merely as administrative branch offices, little better than local government.
The EU is fundamentally materialistic which is shown by two things, one obvious and one symbolic. The real unifying force of Europe was Christianity, a shared spiritual identity and transcendental belief. A religion.That is not part of modern EU ideology at all since it is based on Enlightenment values which, it could be reasonably said, actually trashed many real traditional European beliefs. I am not rejecting the Enlightenment which was a valuable, indeed essential, step forward, but it should have been built on religion not used to push the latter aside which is what happened, and is the attitude behind EU ideology. After all, most of the great men of European history were not only believers in God but that belief inspired their work.
To my mind, the EU flag reveals something fundamental about the project. It has no centre. And that means it has no heart. This is precisely because the EU is an atheist project. It likes to pretend it stands for intelligence and culture but what sort of intelligence and what sort of culture? I would say that it is actually a technocrat's dream and what is the important thing for technocrats? It is efficiency. A technocratic society must be one that is highly ordered and tightly controlled to bring about maximum efficiency. It has no place for anything that cannot be measured. Outwardly humanitarian, it actually rejects much of what it really means to be human because its concept of humanity is a shrivelled little thing without a soul.
Now, I know that most people who voted to leave the EU were unlikely to have framed their reasons in this way. They were concerned about mass immigration and its effects on their jobs, schools, housing etc. Or they didn't like being told what to do by foreigners. Or sundry other reasons. But perhaps in many cases behind these tangible outer reasons there was a sense that this country was slipping away from them, and they were deeply uncomfortable with that. Their identity was being stripped away. The EU offers nothing in this regard because it has no identity of its own. It is a hollow thing whose purpose is only functional. But man cannot live by bread alone.