Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Today's Universities & Humbolt's 19th Century Ideas

     “Metaphysical views, ... had not been retired from the curricula of universities because they had somehow been proven false but because Humbolt’s scientific model had been over-applied to all human concerns, including those of philosophy and the humanities. Looking through the lens of science, Humbolt could see no legitimacy or necessity for metaphysical theories; however, Huston believed this was confusing ‘an absence of evidence for an evidence of absence.’ … like looking at the world through blue sunglasses and denying the existence of the color yellow on the grounds that it couldn’t be seen through them.

     [Humbolt’s continuing hold on universities] appears to serve logical sensibilities admirably, but onto transcendence, the sacred, the meaning of life and humanity’s potentials it opens no vistas.
     Who [today is] working with students whose sensibilities and concerns lie in these directions? Are we to say that these concerns are unimportant? Spawned by neuroses? Intangible to the life of the mind?” 

       Dana Sawyer “Huston Smith: Wisdomkeeper. Living the World’s Religions. The Authorized Biography of a 21st Century Spiritual Giant.” Fons Vitae, Louisville, KY, 2014.

Poppies of France

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