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John Ralston Saul

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~Sophia~
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Certainly the best way to investigate great literature is on dares and spin-the-bottle. Really, I tend to be open-minded and investigate all sorts of different lit, but that sounds too much like a token bastard of a-culturalism: Having no biases, not even to reason.

I have a favorite method of finding great books. I never fail to buy the highest recommendations of my closest friends and people I respect. First, reading something a friend has read is great for discussing a text with someone you respect--which is great for learning as much as possible about the text. Second, good people tend to read good books. By a combination of recommendations and knowing about a few books that I might enjoy, I have piles of books on my to-read list. So unless the person who dared you to read it is someone you particularly respect, I would say to hell with it. There are better things to spend your valuable time on.

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Whenever people talk of 'too much rationality' or 'cold, unfeeling logic', as if somehow Reason is some necessary evil, sent to constrict our animal desires and base emotions, I understand that the grain of truth in what they are saying, that grain being 'rationalism' and not 'rationality', and it is true: rationalism leads to disaster.

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Whenever people talk of 'too much rationality' or 'cold, unfeeling logic', as if somehow Reason is some necessary evil, sent to constrict our animal desires and base emotions, I understand that the grain of truth in what they are saying, that grain being 'rationalism' and not 'rationality', and it is true: rationalism leads to disaster.

What you have there is the mind-body dichotomy in action. I like to call it the "Mr. Spock" syndrome. Of course the basic construct of the argument is a golden mean sort of thinking, that everything, must be in moderation, including reason, and maybe even reality.

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He is a critic of modern society and from what I have been told some of his identifications are dead on. How does he however go from "there is lots of confusion and ideological disintegration out there" to "the problem is too much rationality"? The fact that someone speaks of freedom does not mean that they understand the concept. Why would he think that reason is the problem and not, for example, simple ignorance? What should we use in reason's place? It looks like I am going to read this thing after all.

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