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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Thirst of the Soul

"Hasidic thought views philosophy and philosophers with an apathy verging on invalidation. The faith of philosophers rests upon the astute answer that they give to resolve some paradox that they themselves created. But contentment with some "answer" only stultifies the longing soul, which yearns daily for a more profound thirst and for ever-increasing fulfillment...The thirst becomes enclothed in philosophical questions, in the desire to understand a certain point. That philosophical quest is thus merely one of the vessels in which the soul's thirst takes on a form, because the ultimate thirst of the soul is still hidden from consciousness. But if a person were able to visualize what he really seeks, his mind would already have grasped it, and attaining it attaining it would then be within reach. However, since he is not yet ready to grasp this ultimate truth in his mind, his thirst must now express itself in some interim form in some desire to which the soul can presently relate...The person who relishes in resolving some philosophical question is just like that wounded child [who is pacified with candy]. His soul is only temporarily pacified, but he has not quenched his soul's ongoing thirst. For the thirst of the soul is to return to its Source...step by step...without too much tarrying at each step, for each step brings the soul closer..."
-R. Menachem Ekstein, H"YD, Tannai ha'Nefesh 'Hasagat ha'Chaddisut (Translated as Visions of a Compassionate World by Yehoshua Starrett)

"It is only possible to find a secure basis for the soul in the context of God. Knowledge, feeling, imagination, desire, and the inner and outer movements of the soul all require of Man that they be Godly. Then they will find their full expression, their proper relations, with a settled mind. However, if a person searches for greatness just below this level, then immediately he is like a lost ship in the sea; battling waves constantly remove rest from him, and from wave to wave he is taken in confusion. If it is possible for him to become stuck in any thick mud of an insensitive soul and heart, he will be successful in limiting the light of his life for a while until it seems like he has finally found rest. But this will not prevail for long; the soul will break through its prison and the unstable confusion will be at its full strength. The place of our rest is only to be found in God."
-R. Kook, Orot, Zironim, Tzima'on l'El Chai (See R. Haim Lifshitz here and here for his analogy of G0d as the appex of a triangle)

"The history of philosophy exhibits man's search for Truth by the way of discursive reasoning. A Neo-Thomist...has maintained that the judgement always points beyond itself, always contains an implicit reference to Absolute Truth...[W]e may say that the search for truth is ultimately the search for Absolute Truth, God, and even those systems of philosophywhich appear to refute this statement, e.g. Historical Materialism, are nevertheless examples of it, for they are all seeking, even if unconsciously, even if they would not recognize the fact, for the ultimate Ground, the supremely Real."
-Frederick Copleston, A History of Philosophy, pg. 6

"In My Father, Bertrand Russell, his daughter Katharine Tait, writes 'I would have liked to convince my father that I had found what he had been looking for, the ineffable something he had longed for all his life. I would have liked to persuade him that the search for God does not have to be in vain. But it was hopeless...' Tait, nevertheless, believes that Russell's 'whole life had been a search for God...Somewhere in the back of my father's mind, at the bottom of his heart, in the depths of his soul, there was an empty space that had once been filled by God, and he never found anything else to put in it.' He had 'the ghost like feeling of not belonging, of having no home in this world.' In a poignant passage Russell once said: ''Nothing can penetrate the loneliness of the human heart except the highest intensity of the sort of love the religious teachers have preached.'"


its All Good said...

and what does Reb Yona say

Yona said...

The soul begins to soar
The past screams a scream
To stay secure

The soul yearns for more
The heart races a race
To close the door

The soul cries for the Lord
The body laughes a laugh
And begins to snore

its All Good said...


its All Good said...

"Sometimes I wanna give it all up but then my soul cries from the dust. Light light light abounds. The world needs to hear your sound. So just smile at the barriers and with the wave of a hand become one of the carriers... of Light."