Simone weil essay on affliction


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Difficult in the same way as a treatise on tennis or running, but much more so. Because of the extensiveness and complexity of her work, I will be using her words exactly, as often as possible. Simone Weil was a trained philosopher and a teacher of philosophy.


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  • Simone Weil on Affliction and the Chasm in God!

She was a political theorist and activist, a revolutionary, a laborer in the French fields and factories and toward the end of he life, she was a mystic. She believed …show more content…. Following Taoism, she says she believes that God represents "the Way"; that he is not embodied in "the personal anthropomorphisized aspect of the Western inclination. She says that "faced with two men who have no experience with god, the one who denies his existence is probably closer to the truth. When the silence of God comes into the soul and penetrates it and joins the silence which is secretly present in us , from then on we have our treasure and our heart in God; there are only two things piercing enough to penetrate our souls in this way; they are affliction and beauty.

Impossible to define it psychologically, because of the fullness of the aesthetic contemplation.

“The great mystery of life is not suffering but affliction.”

Panichas, p. The sea is not less beautiful in our eyes because we know ships have wrecked on it. Leave a comment. Filed under Simone Weil. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account.

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Simone Weil Bibliography – University of Calgary

Skip to content. Michael Sapiro. Share this: Twitter Facebook Email Print. Like this: Like Loading What say you? Cancel reply Enter your comment here Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:. Email required Address never made public. Simone Weil was a philosopher, political activist, and mystic from the early part of the twentieth-century, and her insights into the human condition made a significant impact on my view of the world.

It is not astonishing that suffering happens, she reasoned.


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We know there are criminals who do horrible things. And we know that sickness can cause tremendous suffering for long periods of time, but this is the result of the indifferent mechanisms of the natural order of things. What is astonishing is that God has allowed affliction to have such power over the souls of innocent human beings.

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In this way, affliction is physical, psychological, and social. Physical suffering can be extensive, but when it is long and very frequent, it can uproot a life and impair the soul. If physical agony is completely absent, however, there is no damage done to the soul.

And it is not truly affliction unless it is accompanied by some form or fear of social degradation.

Simone Weil Top 10 Quotes

Affliction, she says,. Human beings can live twenty years or fifty years in this violent state.

We pass beside them without noticing them. What person is able to discern them, if Christ himself does not look through our eyes?

2. Social-Political Philosophy

We only notice that they behave strangely sometimes, and we reprimand the behavior. That is, unless someone has been given the supernatural ability to see the afflicted through the eyes of Christ. Trying to explain affliction to those who have never encountered it is like trying to explain sounds to someone who can neither hear nor speak. And those who have been themselves mutilated by affliction are in no state to try to help others understand it either. Thus, compassion for the afflicted is impossible.


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