Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Article on Modernity

Some of you probably saw this article on First Things. I have seen the author, Thaddeus J. Kozinski, around online before. In spite of his unfortunately unabomber-esque name, I think his analysis of the questions he touches on regarding how we got into this spiritual malaise of modernity and post-modernity, and the problem of how to get out of it, are quite good, and are the sort of conversation we need to be having. 

Now, I personally have some issues with the idea of trying to prognosticate "where the discourse is headed"...given that such predictions are themselves part of the present discourse, and thus might wind up with the problems of self-fulfilling prophecy; it seems silly to feel you must facilitate the birth of a future that might not come if you hadn't facilitated it. I'm much more for fighting for a vision, not for arguing that a certain vision is somehow inevitable and then seeking to fulfill that inevitability (an approach I've seen some people seem to take at times). But I think this is exactly his point at the end about freedom. 

We can choose where the future is headed, and while we must recognize the facticity of the current cultural, intellectual, and spiritual landscape, these things do not bind us or determine the true nature of good or evil (which we can live as individuals, at least) in any way. We do not need to have a Christendom to live for Christian society, just like the last man alive on earth will still be able live for the human race. If it is good, then we can follow its path even when it is long past its zenith.

2 comments:

Thaddeus Kozinski said...

Thanks for posting my article, and a good comment. I think you got what I was saying.

Sharon said...

After this post I will go and read the article. Your last paragraph has said so clearly what I have been trying to articulate to my family who are of the "we're all going to hell..... and there's nothing we can do about it." I will send your last paragraph to my family - with atributions of course.