Thursday, June 18, 2015
Safranski on Father Romano Guardini (1885-1968; Freiburg doctorate 1915 under Engelbert Krebs).
[...]Romano Guardini also saw the light in the downfall. Guardini, who for a short time in 1946 had been considered as a successor to Heidegger's chair, in 1950 published a widely read book, The End of the Modern Age, which was based on his lectures in Tübingen in the winter of 1947-48.
The modern age, according to Guardini, unfolded from an understanding of nature as a protective power, from human subjectivity as an autonomous personality, and from culture as an intermediate sphere with its own laws. Everything. he claimed. had received its meaning from nature, culture, and subjectivity. With the end of the modern age, which his time was witnessing. these ideas fade away. Nature loses its protective force and becomes unfamiliar and dangerous. "Mass man" displaces the individual, and the old faith in culture dies in the malaise of culture. The totalitarian systems are both expressions of and responses to this crisis, which also opens up the chance of a new beginning. Man evidently must first lose his natural and cultural riches in order that, in such "poverty;' he may rediscover himself as a "naked" person before God. Perhaps the "mists of secularization" will disperse and a new day of history will begin.
Pp. 360
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