Quotes Tagged "sublime"
The sea had jeeringly kept his finite body up, but drowned the infinite of his soul. Not drowned entirely, though. Rather carried down alive to wondrous depths, where strange shapes of the unwarped primal world glided to and fro before his passive eyes; and the miser-merman, Wisdom, revealed his hoarded heaps; and among the joyous, heartless, ever-juvenile eternities, Pip saw the multitudinous, God-omnipresent, coral insects, that out of the firmament of waters heaved the colossal orbs. He saw God’s foot upon the treadle of the loom, and spoke it; and therefore his shipmates called him mad. So man’s insanity is heaven’s sense; and wandering from all mortal reason, man comes at last to that celestial thought, which, to reason, is absurd and frantic; and weal or woe, feels then uncompromised, indifferent as his God.
We will realize that the world as we knew it was incomplete, we will realize the finitude of our own minds, we will realize the complexity and wonder of a rich and multifaceted world that is both more beautiful and more horrifying than we ever knew nor could have dreamed- and we will run in fear, or we will love it. It is a visceral, instinctual reaction, one which equivocates to either shock or awe, and one which likely embodies both. It is a reaction all beings share when faced with something utterly new- the defamiliarizing threat and thrill of the sublime. It is both inexplicably gratifying and deeply uncomfortable to become aware of your own beauty, of the utter, tantalizing, inexplicable divinity of every second of your life- your paralysis in the face of God is a synthesis of both the person you once were, which society has crafted you to believe you are, and the personhood you have always possessed and shared with the universe itself, a personhood which is deeper and richer than all knowledge or any issue which corrupts our class or economics or cripples the politics of our time.
Most hard-hitting, truly provocative thinkers I have read will argue, of course, for intersectional advocacy and social equality, but each of them still shrouds, indiscriminately, some qualitatively-ranked mythos of ‘learning’ (or, implicitly, education) as some kind of holy grail to cultural change. But education is really, more than anything, the chronicler of cultural change and the documentarian of human developments. It is, by nature, in the business of analyzing, segmenting, and adjudicating things- hardly at all in the business of creating them to propel into the public, as if university campuses were somehow the laboratories of God.