By Carlos Eire
What's eternity? Is it something except a only summary inspiration, completely unrelated to our lives? an insignificant wish? A frightfully doubtful horizon? Or is it a simple task, shared by means of priest and scientist alike, and a necessary aspect in all human relatives? In a truly short background of Eternity, Carlos ireland, the historian and nationwide e-book Award-winning writer of expecting Snow in Havana, has written an excellent background of eternity in Western tradition. Tracing the belief from precedent days to the current, ireland examines the increase and fall of 5 assorted conceptions of eternity, exploring how they built and the way they've got assisted in shaping person and collective self-understanding. A publication approximately lived ideals and their courting to social and political realities, a truly short heritage of Eternity is additionally approximately unbelief, and the tangled and infrequently rancorous relation among religion and cause. Its topic is the most important topic of all, person who has taxed minds nice and small for hundreds of years, and should endlessly be of human curiosity, intellectually, spiritually, and viscerally.
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Additional resources for A Very Brief History of Eternity
Chapter four traces and analyzes the early modern period, roughly two centuries during which the medieval synthesis of time and eternity was challenged and overturned (1500– 1700). This chapter looks closely at those changes that this pivotal rupture with the past brought about—changes that marked a transition to modernity and continue to have an effect on us. Chapter five takes us from the Enlightenment of the eighteenth century up to the present day, a period during which the impact of eternity on Western civiliza tion has steadily declined or almost disappeared.
And that would be as useless as a life-size map of the earth. So, perhaps, since anything short of that is insufficient, and our time on earth runs out too quickly, a brief account seems best. When one also considers that all books and everything else are as nothing and will one day vanish completely into oblivion, then the “perhaps” can vanish too. In the meantime, as you and I wait for our inevitable end, all we have is time, and time can seem very precious—even if it is as nothing. Some, like Sigmund Freud, might say it is all the more precious for precisely that reason.
This is why one may say: no ontology, no eternity. At least not the eternity that was conceived in the West. ) and teleology (thinking about and determining the end or purpose of anything). When it came to epistemology, self-reflexive questions needed to be raised about the ways in which the human mind—limited as it is by sense perception and its finitude—could grapple with thinking about that which is limitless. And teleological ques tions also had to be raised, for when thinking about the or der of things, and their proper end or fulfillment, one must necessarily examine why they came to exist in such-and-such a way in the first place and how the “such-and-such” relates to time and flux.
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