Finite Perfection: Reflections on Virtue

Finite Perfection: Reflections on Virtue

Finite Perfection: Reflections on Virtue

Finite Perfection: Reflections on Virtue

Excerpt

Does the work to follow need an explanation, an introduction? It is a philosophical essay, perhaps a meditation, written in a free style, drawing upon an experience of several years of trying to come to terms with what emerged within myself and what I then began to push to extremities to overcome--that is, evil and joy, evil with joy, in all their phases. The essay should speak for itself. Introductions only make things simpler, providing readers and especially reviewers with "finger posts," as Samuel Alexander called them. But let me plant some, nonetheless, so that you might find your way more easily to where I would lead you with a suspect hand. Although you will not need them, they might prove useful to me, inasmuch as even a crafted text is a wilderness.

Evil--which is always present in a personal existent, an individuated human being, because we suffer so many adversities so deeply and delight so extravagantly (the latter if we can succeed in letting ourselves)--first obtruded into my awareness more than a decade ago when one day I heard the voice of a beast in me, a savage who did not want to die, to get sick, to grow old, and who did not want to miss out on ecstasy. Disturb-

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