Sometimes one longs for spiritual direction

August 25, 2010

Pierre Klossowski remarked seventy years ago that “individuals have become incapable of opposing to the multiple solicitations of modern life the resistance that is necessary for a conclusive orientation of character and existence.”

Amen. And yet we try.

And fail.

And want for help to compel our freedom.

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2 Responses to “Sometimes one longs for spiritual direction”

  1. Andrew Macrae Says:

    And then sometimes thinking about character and existence in terms of resistance and opposition can be counter-productive. Perhaps another way to conceptualise the relationship of the individual to the solicitations of modern life is as a falling away of that which is no longer relevant or an embracing and marshalling of positive and productive energies rather than a denial of negative ones, which in my experience only seems to feed their power. More and more, I find the trick is creating enough mental space between stimulus and response so that actions flow from positive principles and a strong ethical framework rather than the whims of craving and emotion. Simple yes, but never easy. The lizard brain needs to be consistently and gently trained into doing the right thing, like a puppy. And now I’m gently suggesting to my puppy-lizard that it’s time to switch off the internet and face the blank page… 😀


    • At least Pierre never had to confront the perpetual solicitations of the internet. Confronted with those tentacles, his Catholicism may not have been able to save him. That option is of course now bankrupt. Likewise all the new age wannabe priests of psychobabble. Leaving us with a vacuum of spiritual direction. I like your characterisation of the difficult and constant work needed to marshal the needed energies and carve your own space of freedom. But as you say, never easy, and sometimes just too hard. I’m not after authority, but community. There’s only so much an animal can self-train.


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