Wednesday, 1 April 2015

The Salesian titanothore?

“But we are not there yet. And for society to progress towards that or any other goal it 78 140For a New Political Economy, 20. must fulfil one condition. It cannot be a titanothore, a beast with a three-ton body and a ten-ounce brain. It must direct its attention .... to the overhead product of cultural implements. It must glory in its deepening, in the pure deepening that adds to aggregate leisure, to liberate many entirely and all increasingly to the field of cultural activities .... It must lift its eyes more and more to the more general and more difficult fields of speculation, for it is from them that it has to derive the delicate compound of unity and freedom in which alone progress can be born, struggle, and win through.” [n.140: Lonergan, For a New Political Economy, 20.] [P. McShane,, "Systematics."]
I am jotting this down, this fantastic comment from Lonergan, because it has all to do with my / our being Salesian at this moment in history. Is there or is there not place for the 'intellectual,' the theoretical, the mind? True, I have been emphasizing the Way of the Heart, which is what we miss. I have been saying that we have shored up enough the Way of the Mind. And that is true, but only in a sense: we have the structures, and by now the average provincial does not think twice about having to set aside persons for 2 or 3 years for a master's degree or a doctoral degree in philosophy or theology and sometimes salesianity and spirituality. But: as a congregation, do we really think, reflect, and allow intelligence under faith to guide us? Is there a place for the graced mind in our being and acting? Are we running the risk of being a beast with a three-ton body and a ten-ounce brain?

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