The Modern Theme

PDF EBook by José Ortega y Gasset

EBook Description

nowledge is the acquisition of truths, and in acquiring truths we become acquainted with the transcendental or trans- PDFsubjective universe of reality. The Modern Theme PDF EBook Truths are eternal, unique and invariable. How, then, can there be, in the knower, any process by which they can be identified? The reply of rationalism is narrow and arbitrary: knowledge is only possible if reality can penetrate it without the least disturbance of its own fabric. The knower, therefore, must be a transparent medium, lacking any sort of special quality or characteristic colour: he must be the same yesterday as today or to-morrow: he must therefore be ultra-vital and extra-historical. Life has essential characters of its own, it changes and develops: in a word, it is history.

The reply of relativity is equally narrow and arbitrary. Knowledge is impossible; download; there is no such thing as transcendent reality, for the reason that every real knower resembles an arena that has its own special formation. Reality would have to alter its own fabric in order to enter such an arena, and the particular alteration made would in each case be falsely construed as reality.

Malebranche used to maintain that if we know any truth at all, it is because we see phenomena through God's eyes or from God's point of view. To me the inverse seems more probable, viz., that God sees phenomena through the medium of mankind or that mankind is the visual organ of divinity. It is therefore peculiarly incumbent upon us not to defraud the sublime requirement that depends upon our co-operation for its fufilment, and, planting ourselves firmly in the position we�find allotted to us, to open our eyes wide to our environment with a profound faith in our own organism and vital nature, and accept the labour that destiny assigns us—-the modern theme. Like this book? Read online this: Process and Reality, Theme for Diverse Instruments.

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