Thursday, January 03, 2008

"Our hearts are restless, until they rest in Thee"

"... the Western world has come to cultivate a seemingly positive, though superficial, concept of restlessness. Work, valued almost exclusively for the sake of income, claims all of man's energies... Man is ever more tantalized by the idea of moving ahead and upwards, keeping the door open to any change of job, city, country or interest that may be required. To keep the same occupation, as our parents or grandparents were accustomed to do, is now considered stultifying. Change is good; it signals a permanence of youth. One has to keep going, transforming "old age" into a sort of permanent adolescence that is blind to it own mortality.

"This restless spasmodic search for an increasingly exciting novelty, however, is an appalling index of man's absence from himself. Having vacated his own self, man can no longer find a dwelling place in which time and meaning are reconciled, a place, that is, in which he can be fully present to himself and others and thus rest...

"[T]his conception of restlessness, which is dominant in the postmodern world, not only prevents the formation of culture and of humane living, but more importantly originates in a human existence that is radically disengaged from itself and from history. To say that one is disengaged from oneself, however, means that this restlessness results above all from having abdicated one's sonship.

"The human being, seen in this light as ultimately an orphan, seeks either to possess without measure, or to wander in willful ignorance of his own paternal origin."

Antonio Lopez, On Restlessness, from Communio 34 (Summer 2007)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi, Its John from Kyneton.

I much prefer the insight into the human condition and its restlessness communicated in these references.