All Things Shining: Reading the Western Classics to Find Meaning in a Secular Age

jpeg“when works of art shine, they illuminate and glamorize a way of life, and all other things shine in their light. A work of art embodies the truth of its world.” (102)

Diagnostic of a kind of cultural malaise that has hit, and hit hard, from the time of the Enlightenment, Dreyfus and Kelly, offer opportunities for insight to purge our ailing spirit. Offspring to the Age of Reason the narrative – which doesn’t show up as a narrative to our ratiocinated minds! – we are like Peanut’s Linus clinging to our blanket alert to anything suspiciously unscientific. For science is our new paradigm – with God-like qualities to bout – that has come to bring order and oust the (very real) terror of superstition. But this has dawned not without first confiscating that im-pulse which illuminates the human experience of a world that dances on our eyes when unconcealed through visceral vision. Left desolate, Dreyfus and Kelly trace moods – “the attunement of what human beings consider as spiritually important in a society or a culture at different fissures in time” – in an attempt to re-canvass the sacred so that we might re-learn the art of sight.

 

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3 thoughts on “All Things Shining: Reading the Western Classics to Find Meaning in a Secular Age

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  1. I’m very friendly to their thesis and like Dreyfus’s work on Foucault so I picked it up. Then I got about half way through it and, without resolving not to finish it, just didn’t. In your opinion does it get better or stay about the same after the half way mark?

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