We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
"The loss of transcendence evokes the flight to utopia. I am convinced that the destruction of transcendence is the actual amputation of human beings from which all other sicknesses flow. Robbed of their real greatness they can only find escape in illusory hopes."
Just in Cambodia, Saw the killing fields and Genocide Museum. Read the history of Pol Pot and his merry band of monsters. (Interesting Pol Pot's nomme du guerre is thought to be short for "Political Potentate") Their utopian madness fed in the salons of Paris like Uncle Ho on reflection is so deranged, it's hard to imagine anyone buying it. Unfortunately 2 million Cambodians paid the price in blood. God save us from our elite intellectual betters!
As soon as dawn breaks, young girls go gathering roses. A gust of innocence sweeps through the valleys, the capitals, assists the intelligence of the most enthusiastic poets, showering down protection for cradles, wreathes for youth, belief in immortality for the aged.
This quote from Benedict represents the crux of the problem not only for the West but the modern world as well. Eric Voegelin says essentially the same thing concerning the moral and political crisis in the West. Unless there is a way of rekindling contact with the transcendent reality we will continue on our muddled way, making scientific progress while becoming less satisfied and more confused as time goes on. Voegelin felt there would be a resurgence of natural morality, Spengler didn't. I don't know if Benedict is optimistic or not. All of this has nothing to do with dogmas, ideology, etc. Personally I have felt for the last 20 years that the future would be a gradual downgrade of life, I have not been disappointed. Thanks for the quote by the Pope, I think he probably gets very little credit these days.
I agree with Michael DeJoy's statement that the loss of transcendence is a general problem for the modern world. Back in 1951, Arthur Koestler dealt with the loss of transcendence in his novel "The Age of Longing" (London: Collins). I only recently read this novel and was astonished by its relevance to the present.
What I see happening today is that man's transcendental impulses are being absorbed and twisted by the leftist dogmas in Western society. They are twisted and downgraded into a kind of pity for the poor, called "social justice."
I happen to be an atheist, but the Pope is surely quite correct when he claims that all humans have transcendence in their nature.
There is a further corrosion of the soul that takes place with European style socialism, in that, because it elevates material desires to the highest, it cynically cuts the heart out of any transcendent view of the world, anything beyond one's immediate animal needs.
Bob at One Cosmos