Thursday, January 29, 2015

Love vs. Power

From The Erotic Phenomenon by Jean-Luc Marion ...

... it may be that in order to attain the truth, it is necessary in every case, first to desire it, and therefore to love it.  And the contemporary experience of ideology, this knowledge that sacrifices everything to power, has demonstrated in actual events that man does not spontaneously love the truth, and that he often sacrifices it for a lie, provided that this lie assures him power.

Note the two primary points: to know, one must first love.  Philosophy is philo-sophia, the love of wisdom.  One does not find wisdom without first having a love for it, and then paying the price and sacrificing for it.  Seek and ye shall find, but you won't find if you don't seek - or don't want to seek.

Also note that Marion defines ideology as love of power defeating love of truth.  An ideology is thus a parody of a philosophy, for one who desires power will suppress the truth in a blink in order to secure it.

And, I would add, not only are ideologues willing to sacrifice truth to the lie in order to gain power, we moderns are willing to live the lie out, in order to gain the illusion of control.  We'll opt for Unreality over Reality, if we believe the lie of the Unreality is a lie of our own making, a lie we can control.  We sinners may not all be ideologues, but we sinners are all lusting after the comfortable lie rather than the disconcerting truth.

Later, Marion says ...

we are ... always caught within the tonality of an erotic disposition - love or hate, unhappiness or happiness, enjoyment or suffering, hope or despair, solitude or communion - and ... we can never, without lying to ourselves, claim to arrive at a fundamental erotic neutrality.  Besides, who would strive for inaccessible ataraxy, who would demand it or boast of it, if he did not feel himself precisely to be, from the outset and forever, wrought, paralyzed, and obsessed by amorous tonalities?  

Aside form being the first time I have ever seen the word ataraxy used in a sentence, this is an emphatic way of saying that we cannot live without loving - and that the attempt to kill Eros (love in the guise of desire, passion, care and motivation; love that "gives a damn"), an attempt which seems especially prevalent in young Devout Catholics, is not only futile but inhuman.

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