The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods -

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tbieter
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The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods -

Post by tbieter »

The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods by A. G. Sertillanges, O.P. (1863-1948)
First published in 1921

I have started rereading The Intellectual Life , I think for the third time. Here is how I obtained my first copy, a first edition in hardback.

Many years ago, I learned of Loome Theological Booksellers in Stillwater, Minnesota. Tom Loome, a former monk, would go to Catholic institutions that were closing and buy the institution's entire library. Loome"s collections were housed in a church building that he had purchased. He would see customers by appointment.

I promptly sent him a letter that listed fourteen books by Josef Pieper that I wanted to buy. He called me and said that he had copies of all the books. I then made an appointment to travel from Duluth to Stillwater and buy the books.

As I was paying for the Pieper books, I remembered The Intellectual Life. I asked about a book by a "Sertillanges." Mr. Loome pointed to an area of the church and said "Latin or English?" Stunned by this find, I just said "English," and he went and got my copy!

I'm sure that you have correctly inferred that I truly cherish this memory.


http://www.amazon.com/Intellectual-Life ... ctual+life

https://www.loomebooks.com/index.cfm?
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Bill Wiltrack
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by Bill Wiltrack »

.



Great story.



I especially like the part where, - " Mr. Loome pointed to an area of the church and said "Latin or English?"



Thank you for sharing!





.
tbieter
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by tbieter »

James V. Schall, S.J. wrote the Forward for this edition of The Intellectual Life. I've read most of his books and met him once. His readers learn a lot of Aristotle, Plato, Augustine, Aquinas and Dr. Johnson, and others.
https://www.google.com/search?client=qs ... mes+schall

In his opinion, The Intellectual Life is "a timeless book," a "wonderful, useful book [that] should always be kept in print,"; "At first sight, as I intimated, this is a quaint book. At second sight it is an utterly demanding book."

"This is a book that allows us to be free and independent, to know, and to know why we need not be dependent on the media or ideology that often dominate our scene."

"I would put The Intellectual Life on the desk of every serious student, and most of the unserious ones."

Finally, "We should read through this classic book, make its teachings ours after our own manner....The book will have an abiding, concrete effect on our lives."
tbieter
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by tbieter »

tbieter wrote:James V. Schall, S.J. wrote the Forward for this edition of The Intellectual Life. I've read most of his books and met him once. His readers learn a lot of Aristotle, Plato, Augustine, Aquinas and Dr. Johnson, and others.
https://www.google.com/search?client=qs ... mes+schall

In his opinion, The Intellectual Life is "a timeless book," a "wonderful, useful book [that] should always be kept in print,"; "At first sight, as I intimated, this is a quaint book. At second sight it is an utterly demanding book."

"This is a book that allows us to be free and independent, to know, and to know why we need not be dependent on the media or ideology that often dominate our scene."

"I would put The Intellectual Life on the desk of every serious student, and most of the unserious ones."

Finally, "We should read through this classic book, make its teachings ours after our own manner....The book will have an abiding, concrete effect on our lives."
PREFACE
"Do you want to do intellectual work? Begin by creating within you a zone of silence, a habit of recollection, a will to renunciation and detachment which puts you entirely at the disposal of the work; acquire that state of soul unburdened by desire and self-will which is the state of grace of the intellectual worker. Without that you will do nothing, at least nothing worth while."
tbieter
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by tbieter »

"Every intellectual work begins by a moment of ecstasy;1 only in the second place does the talent of arrangement, the technique of transitions, connections of ideas, construction, come into play. Now, what is this ecstasy but a flight upwards, away from self, a forgetting to live our own poor life, in order that the object of our delight may live in our thought and in our heart.

1 Because a man is lifted out of and above himself: Greek ek-stasis out of one's ordinary foothold (Tr. Notr) See pages 31, 133, 255" Preface, xix
tbieter
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by tbieter »

PREFACE

"Are we perhaps ourselves exposed to the temptation of disparaging, envying, unjustly criticizing others, of disputing with them? We must then remember that such inclinations, which disturb and cause dissension, injure eternal truth and are incompatible with devotion to it."

The formal purpose of a forum devoted to philosophy is the pursuit of truth. I have always been amazed when, instead of practicing self-discipline in their discourse, some members disparage, and unjustly criticize other members.
tbieter
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by tbieter »

tbieter wrote:PREFACE

"Are we perhaps ourselves exposed to the temptation of disparaging, envying, unjustly criticizing others, of disputing with them? We must then remember that such inclinations, which disturb and cause dissension, injure eternal truth and are incompatible with devotion to it."

The formal purpose of a forum devoted to philosophy is the pursuit of truth. I have always been amazed when, instead of practicing self-discipline in their discourse, some members disparage, and unjustly criticize other members.
Thomas Aquinas wrote on "contention."
http://www.newadvent.org/summa/3038.htm
tbieter
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by tbieter »

Here are the "Sixteen Precepts" of St. Thomas Aquinas for the acquisition of knowledge.
They are mentioned and clarified in Sertillanges' book.

http://planningnotebook.blogspot.com/20 ... ncing.html
duszek
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by duszek »

Does contention mean that you repress your natural impulses ? Which are honest.

And if so how to prevent becoming mean and embittered ?
tbieter
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by tbieter »

duszek wrote:Does contention mean that you repress your natural impulses ? Which are honest.

And if so how to prevent becoming mean and embittered ?
No
Here is the main thought on contention:

I answer that, To contend is to tend against some one. Wherefore just as discord denotes a contrariety of wills, so contention signifies contrariety of speech. For this reason when a man contrasts various contrary things in a speech, this is called "contentio," which Tully calls one of the rhetorical colors (De Rhet. ad Heren. iv), where he says that "it consists in developing a speech from contrary things," for instance: "Adulation has a pleasant beginning, and a most bitter end."

Now contrariety of speech may be looked at in two ways: first with regard to the intention of the contentious party, secondly, with regard to the manner of contending. As to the intention, we must consider whether he contends against the truth, and then he is to be blamed, or against falsehood, and then he should be praised. As to the manner, we must consider whether his manner of contending is in keeping with the persons and the matter in dispute, for then it would be praiseworthy, hence Tully says (De Rhet. ad Heren. iii) that "contention is a sharp speech suitable for proof and refutation"--or whether it exceeds the demands of the persons and matter in dispute, in which case it is blameworthy.
Ansiktsburk
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by Ansiktsburk »

Sure, there are a number of guys on every philosophy forum, as well as on any forum, that sits around waiting for someone to argue with just for the sake of arguing. They are actually called "net-haters" in the press in my home country(or rather "näthatare" in my uncouth native tongue).

That said, to have a different opinion on something that someone say on a topic that you care about, and how to treat that situation is something rather complex.
You can just shut up, which is a quite offensive strategy, rather one like the proffessional arguers seem to use.
You might see the possibility to communicate with someone on a no-bullshit level, with the topic not being the main thing, but the intellectual contact as such. A kind of love, you might say.
You might go into the argument with the clearest of intentions to find the truth, but for sure, your personal prestige as an intelligent person is at stake. And that might bias your discourse if you get under attack.
And so on.

I actually have a different view with you :) as for the purpose of a philosophy forum(or philosophy as such) - philosophy is derived from the greek "the love of wisdom". I do not really like the wording "search of truth". Truth indicates, to me, a state where everything is explained, where right has been separated from wrong, where discussions end. I like something like "paradigm" better, where discussion do not end, where different views are allowed even though you seek for some kind of deeper knowledge, or wisdom, for yourself and for mankind.
Blaggard
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by Blaggard »

I don't think I have a problem with people who argue for the sake of it, as long as they aren't trolling it's all good. If someone is genuinely being nasty in his contentions the best option I think is to put them on your foe list.
tbieter
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by tbieter »

tbieter wrote:The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods by A. G. Sertillanges, O.P. (1863-1948)
First published in 1921

I have started rereading The Intellectual Life , I think for the third time. Here is how I obtained my first copy, a first edition in hardback.

Many years ago, I learned of Loome Theological Booksellers in Stillwater, Minnesota. Tom Loome, a former monk, would go to Catholic institutions that were closing and buy the institution's entire library. Loome"s collections were housed in a church building that he had purchased. He would see customers by appointment.

I promptly sent him a letter that listed fourteen books by Josef Pieper that I wanted to buy. He called me and said that he had copies of all the books. I then made an appointment to travel from Duluth to Stillwater and buy the books.

As I was paying for the Pieper books, I remembered The Intellectual Life. I asked about a book by a "Sertillanges." Mr. Loome pointed to an area of the church and said "Latin or English?" Stunned by this find, I just said "English," and he went and got my copy!

I'm sure that you have correctly inferred that I truly cherish this memory.


http://www.amazon.com/Intellectual-Life ... ctual+life

https://www.loomebooks.com/index.cfm?
I finished my rereading today, March 4, 2014. I'll pass this on for consideration:

"The intellectual I have in view is a man of wide and varied knowledge complementary to a special study thoroughly pursued; he loves the arts and natural beauty; his mind shows itself to be one in everyday occupations and in meditation: he is the same man in the presence of God, of his fellows, and of his maid, carrying within him a world of ideas and feelings that are not only written down in books and in discourses, but flow into his conversation with his friends, and guide his life." p. 241

As I read this description, I thought of Russell Kirk. http://www.kirkcenter.org/index.php

Who comes to your mind?
tbieter
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Re: The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods

Post by tbieter »

tbieter wrote:
tbieter wrote:The Intellectual Life - Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods by A. G. Sertillanges, O.P. (1863-1948)
First published in 1921

I have started rereading The Intellectual Life , I think for the third time. Here is how I obtained my first copy, a first edition in hardback.

Many years ago, I learned of Loome Theological Booksellers in Stillwater, Minnesota. Tom Loome, a former monk, would go to Catholic institutions that were closing and buy the institution's entire library. Loome"s collections were housed in a church building that he had purchased. He would see customers by appointment.

I promptly sent him a letter that listed fourteen books by Josef Pieper that I wanted to buy. He called me and said that he had copies of all the books. I then made an appointment to travel from Duluth to Stillwater and buy the books.

As I was paying for the Pieper books, I remembered The Intellectual Life. I asked about a book by a "Sertillanges." Mr. Loome pointed to an area of the church and said "Latin or English?" Stunned by this find, I just said "English," and he went and got my copy!

I'm sure that you have correctly inferred that I truly cherish this memory.


http://www.amazon.com/Intellectual-Life ... ctual+life

https://www.loomebooks.com/index.cfm?
I finished my rereading today, March 4, 2014. I'll pass this on for consideration:

"The intellectual I have in view is a man of wide and varied knowledge complementary to a special study thoroughly pursued; he loves the arts and natural beauty; his mind shows itself to be one in everyday occupations and in meditation: he is the same man in the presence of God, of his fellows, and of his maid, carrying within him a world of ideas and feelings that are not only written down in books and in discourses, but flow into his conversation with his friends, and guide his life." p. 241
As I read this description, I thought of Russell Kirk. http://www.kirkcenter.org/index.php

Who comes to your mind?
The silence in response to this question reflects the mediocrity that is characteristic of a democratic age.
And also of Atticus Finch.

"Atticus Finch is a fictional character of Harper Lee's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel To Kill a Mockingbird. Atticus is a lawyer and resident of the fictional Maycomb County, Alabama, and the father of Jeremy "Jem" Finch and Jean Louise "Scout" Finch. Lee based the character on her own father, Amasa Coleman Lee, an Alabama lawyer who, like Atticus Finch, represented black defendants in a highly publicized criminal trial.[1]"
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atticus_Finch
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