Wednesday, February 07, 2007

So distinct a shade

I am most fascinated - and baffled - about the way we invest our experience of the world, and thus the world itself, with meaning. Naturally, science is the most reasonable tool available in giving us a framework for that process but I don't think it can in any way logically dictate the meaning of its findings. I would guess that a hard materialist would say that the question itself is meaningless; which for me is a peculiarly pointless view. Traditional religion, in those brief times that it has not been hopelessly entangled in temporal power struggles, has functioned as a kind of a shortcut to meaning, but it obviously is, in this peculiarly human form, intellectually and logically totally untenable.

Philosophy and art are much better, much more effective and aware in their exploration: ideally, perhaps, a combination of those two would bring us closer to understanding the structure of our passionate being here. In some sense, I would think that this incompleteness of self-understanding is a permanent feature of our human nature - and that any real progress will mean abandoning that state of being. Until that our existence will unavoidably have the partial character of an intellectual and cultural cul-de-sac, with the only open question being the concrete historical level of fear, hysteria and aggression that this state generates.

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