• Noble Dust

    Care to elaborate, here or via PM? No worries either way. Your idea reminded me of this Rilke poem, which, as a quote, is, I guess, apropos to the thread. The translation from German is always clunky, but it came to mind:

    Imaginary Career

    At first a childhood, limitless and free
    of any goals. Ah sweet unconsciousness.
    Then sudden terror, schoolrooms, slavery,
    the plunge into temptation and deep loss.

    Defiance. The child bent becomes the bender,
    inflicts on others what he once went through.
    Loved, feared, rescuer, wrestler, victor,
    he takes his vengeance, blow by blow.

    And now in vast, cold, empty space, alone.
    Yet hidden deep within the grown-up heart,
    a longing for the first world, the ancient one...

    Then, from His place of ambush, God leapt out.
  • Janus

    I like Rilke's poetry, although I have read it only in English translation and, not being an adequate Deutscher sprecher, cannot comment on the 'clunkiness' compared to the originals.

    But you are on the right track as to what I had in mind. "God leaping out" is a metaphor for the kinds of shifts that can, sometimes seemingly inexplicably, occur, and lead you to a different kind of action and activity. Of course, we always imagine that we are, or at least should be, the conscious masters of our own destinies. Consciousness, and its attending rationality or rationalizations, is vastly overrated. Pure reason, the life of cognition, is wrongly thought to be the primary life of the spirit, when the primary life is really pre-cognitive affect, as I see it.
  • Noble Dust
    You do not have to be good.
    You do not have to walk on your knees
    for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
    You only have to let the soft animal of your body
    love what it loves.
    Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
    Meanwhile the world goes on.
    Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
    are moving across the landscapes,
    over the prairies and the deep trees,
    the mountains and the rivers.
    Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
    are heading home again.
    Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
    the world offers itself to your imagination,
    calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting
    over and over announcing your place
    in the family of things.

    -Wild Geese, Mary Oliver
  • I'm no longer 'here'
    The real question of life after death isn't whether or not it exists, but even if it does what problem this really solves.

    The problems are solved, not by giving new information, but by arranging what we have known since long.

    Not how the world is, but that it is, is the mystery.

    If you and I are to live religious lives, it mustn't be that we talk a lot about religion, but that our manner of life is different. It is my belief that only if you try to be helpful to other people will you in the end find your way to God.

    If anyone is unwilling to descend into himself, because this is too painful, he will remain superficial in his writing. . . If I perform to myself, then it’s this that the style expresses. And then the style cannot be my own. If you are unwilling to know what you are, your writing is a form of deceit.

    The philosopher is not a citizen of any community of ideas, that is what makes him a philosopher.

    - Selected quotes of Wittgenstein.
  • ArguingWAristotleTiff
    Time lives forever within the eternal, and the eternal lives forever within time. Eternity is the timeless completion of temporality. "Time is the moving image of eternity". Plato
  • StreetlightX
    "When the word causa—starting from Aristotle’s definition of the four types of cause: material, formal, efficient, and final— becomes a fundamental term of the philosophical and scientific lexicon of the West, it is necessary not to lose sight of its juridical origin: it is the “thing” (cosa) of the law, what gives rise to a trial and, in this way, implicates people in the sphere of the Law. The primal cause is the accusation."

    - Giorgio Agamben, Karman: A Brief Treatise on Action, Guilt, and Gesture
  • StreetlightX
    The only atheism worthy of the name:

    "Many contemporaries are in one important sense neither theists nor atheists—it isn’t so much that they think that God does exist or that he does not, or even that they are ‘agnostic’ in the traditional sense. Rather, as Richard Rorty once said, he just wished people would shut up altogether about the whole topic because for him and those like him the categorical dimension within which something like ‘God’ could—or could not—be said to exist has just disappeared (or been abolished).

    The question of the existence of some entity that might instantiate this category has simply lost all meaning or relevance. From the point of view of a religious believer this is the worst possible state of affairs: at least the militant atheist agrees that something very important is at issue in the discussion of ‘God’. For a committed theist, Rorty’s position would seem to be a particularly intractable form of what he or she would call atheism."

    - Raymond Geuss
  • Noble Dust

    Anyone who agrees with that is a monster.
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