THE SIX CONFUSIONS OF MODERN MAN
There is confusion when things do not occupy their due place in the order of the universe. The six considered here are not the only ones, but they are enough to give an idea of the intellectual and moral disorder that beset modernity.
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Independence and Freedom
This most ancient confusion dates from the disobedience of our first parents, Adam and Eve. The serpent’s promise was that the two would be in a position to “know” good and evil. The term “knowledge”, as noted earlier, is analogical: it changes meaning at every level of being. Human knowledge consists in matching the mind to things; divine knowledge consists in creating things. The promised “knowledge” was therefore the power to decide for themselves what was good and what evil.
In other words, they were promised the divine prerogative of independence in lieu of human freedom limited by truth. That confusion has prospered beyond all bounds.
So what is the problem? Man did not become creator; he (and she) remained creatures. And creatures are bound to live in a universe of necessary dependencies. A creature, whether man-made or God-made, functions according to specifications, decided, always and unfailingly by the manufacturer. A new car comes with a booklet of instructions; woe and betide its owner should he decide to ignore them in the name of a mistaken freedom.
This quest for human independence is not innocuous. Its futility is inescapable, so that every dream of attaining it inevitably ends up in frustration. And since man is a dependent being by nature, claiming independence from truth and goodness inevitably ends up in dependencies worse than the original one.
One finds that instead of dominating or judging the reality attained, one is dominated and judged by it. Today the canons (restrictions) of musical composition, figurative art, architecture etc., have all been ditched to the jubilation of people with more money than sense and of easily bribed petty bureaucrats allowing allocating them public spaces to be occupied by assorted horrors.
But nature is not mocked, and avenges itself in no uncertain terms.
In the vast world of bridge making, horrors are not possible. There are no ugly bridges, period. Why? Whether made of concrete, stone, or suspended, or cable-stayed, a bridge must be true, i.e. carry a certain load over a chasm of some dimensions.
In those few cases when liberties are taken, trusting “new materials” as happened in one case, the first lorry load of gravel caused the structure to collapse, and the (next) engineer had to submit to tried and true canons. Metaphysics says that beauty and truth go always together, and that is why you have no ugly bridges.
The dictum “Truth shall make you free” has never been more tested and verified than today, but unfortunately together with an induced blindness that prevents most people from even detecting this fourth confusion.
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