Tuesday, May 05, 2009

"Progress" . . .

Optimism is often enough the deadly enemy of hope, the theological virtue that comes into play precisely when the sobering facts of the fallen human condition intrude with all their irrefutability.

Once optimism has been replaced by hope, what exactly would the idea of "progress" look like?

Here's a thought: As shocked as our great-grandparents would have been had they lived to see the moral and social degradation of our age, hope might be measured by our ability to believe that, looking back on our age, our great-grandchildren will be even more shocked by it.

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