Friday, February 26, 2021

Prophetic Words

We all pay heavily for earlier disregard of the power of evil, of the essentially unredeemed nature of society, of the dangerous tensions of being human. I was unprepared for the shock of the sudden realization that progress is not automatic, that it may involve climbing a ladder of absurdities. Modern man’s discovery of the fundamental aloneness and solitude in a universe indifferent to his fate is due to an expectation that it was in the universe where care for what is ultimately precious was to be found. He now suffers from the collapse of naive self—deception and oversimplification.

Our era marks the end of simplification, the end of personal exclusiveness, the end of self-defense through aloofness, the end of a sense of security. We find ourselves in a situation in which the distinction between the affluent and the indigent, between the successful and the shlemiels, is becoming obsolete. In the realm of character, in the depth of the soul, in groping for a way out of a creeping sense of futility, in moments of being alone and taking account of our lives, we are all indigent and in need of assistance.—Abraham Joshua Heschel in Moral Grandeur and Spiritual Audacity: Essays, 22

<idle musing>
Indeed! How much truer today, after enduring four years of unrelenting lies, the even now are being repeated and amplified? Progress is never simple and automatic, as anyone who has studied history can tell you. And what we consider progress today isn't necessarily progress at all. We need the discernment that can only come from the Holy Spirit. May we be up to the task!
</idle musing>

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