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VOLUME XIX, NO. 21 MAY 25, 1966 HUMANISTIC PSYCHOLOGY FOR EDUCATION . . . by subjective obstacles [confronting education], I mean those . . . obstacles rooted in the nature of human nature itself, obstacles which sciences of the human psyche have only begun to raise to the surface of understanding, much less to control. No informed person any longer denies the existence or the force of these unrational drives. And yet the paucity of attention still paid by most colleges of education to the prodigious impact of Sigmund Freud's contributions, or to neo-Freudian approaches such as Harry Stack Sullivan's, or even to antiFreudian approaches such as that of Carl Rogers, is little less than a disgrace. —THEODORE BRAMELD, Educational Administration In the more than two decades since World War II, educated thinking in America about man and his condition has undergone tremendous changes. Twenty-five years ago, psychology, psychiatry, psychotherapy, and related disciplines were barely emerging into a wholistic conception of the human being. By and large the dominant influences in these fields were reductionistic, mechanistic, and partfunction centered. In the intervening time, these influences seem to me to have reached and passed their floodtides. The orientation is, to be sure, still very much employed and productive, but a newer, more inclusive perspective on the human experience is growing rapidly and appears to be the ascendant one. This emerging orientation has been called variously, "the third force" in psychology (after psychoanalysis and behaviorism), "neophenomenology," and "humanistic psychology." —J. F. T. BUGENTAL, The Search for Authenticity THERE are no shortages in the scientific literature of appeals for "guiding ideas" or theoretical constructs for use in educational administration in forming our empirical researches and increasing the range of useful inferences that may be drawn from them. Philip G. Smith (1) suggests that "any directive idea, though imperfectly conceived, is better than no idea at all." Daniel E. Griffiths (2), discussing "Research and Theory in Educational Administration," complains that the orientation of the theoretician is missing from the educational administration scene and this is one of the major reasons for the research predicament we are now in. . . . We have another difficulty with the concepts we employ. We seemed to be chained to concepts which are no longer useful in our research. . . . There is a crying need for new concepts with which to research and to build administrative theory. Many efforts to integrate revelant constructs from the social and behavioral sciences into the preparation programs of administrators are evident (3, 4). Among the disciplines drawn upon, it appears that sociology, political science and social psychology tend to make major contributions. While my effort in this paper is in no way a denigration of the potential these disciplines have to offer the study of educational administration, it is an appeal for the more systematic inclusion of another area in which thinking of crucial significance to administration is occurring. This area may be broadly termed "humanistic psychology" (5) . Allport (6) has sounded a major theme of this movement: . . . we need to surrender the models that would compress human personality into the routine homeostatic situation that we find in quasi-closed systems. Human personality is a wide-open system, responsive to tangible and intangible culture, on the lookout for new ideas, and capable of asking an altogether new type of question—asked by no other creature in nature, viz., "Who am I?" . . . . The image should no longer be borrowed from the tradition of simple naive reactivism. Just as centimeters, grams, seconds are outmoded in modern physics, so too are simple stimulus-response connections in modern psychology. In psychology, even more than in physics, we need theory capable of dealing with fluid becoming. . . . Allport (7) has suggested that psychologists gravitate toward one or another philosophical assumption regarding the nature of man, often without being fully aware that they do so. He holds that virtually all modern psychological MANAS Reprint - LEAD ARTICLE 2 theories are oriented toward one of two polar conceptions about the nature of man—that his nature is essentially passive, or that his nature is essentially active. Humanistic psychology, drawing on "the original alternative to Freud— Alfred Adler," holds that man's nature is largely active; that the healthy adult person "is not a collection of acts, but the source of acts." This frame of reference stresses the purposiveness of the behavior of the individual, and uses terms that connote his growing toward the full realization of his capacities and potentials—such terms as "selfactualization," "becoming," "search for authenticity," etc. The postulation is: there are qualities about the healthy adult that allow him to organize his experiences, and to transcend the simple accumulation of stimuli impinging upon him; he is something more than the sum of his experiential parts—more than a reactor (Behaviorism) or a reactor-in-depth (Psychoanalysis). To make a specific tie-in to educational administration: we all function as our own psychologists, i.e., we entertain views of "human nature," of the ways people "learn," limitations imposed by environment, heredity, etc. As Zurcher (8) has recently suggested: . . . if Allport is correct that psychologists, whether they know it or not, tend to make assumptions about the nature of man when they collect data in an attempt to explain his behavior, then might it not follow that almost anyone who deals professionally with, or who has expectations about, the behavior of humans, tends also to make such assumptions? Zurcher then argues that anyone serving as an administrator is involved in the business of philosophy and psychology since he defines Man (including himself) by the various stances he assumes toward "employees," "subordinates," "staff," etc. Nietzsche (9) made a similar point: The real philosophers are commanders and lawgivers; they say: "Thus shall it be!" They determine first the Whither and Why of mankind, and thereby set aside the previous labour of all philosophical workers, and all subjugators of the past—they grasp Volume XIX, No. 21 at the future with a creative hand, and whatever is and was, becomes for them thereby a means, an instrument, and a hammer. It is of the most fundamental importance, I want to argue, that administrators come to recognize that the tasks of "philosophizing" and "psychologizing" are inescapable aspects of their tasks. The responsibility must be accepted, which means, also, prepared for. The existentialist dictum that the choices a person makes constitute his statement of what he thinks Man is should be given explicit (emotional?) meaning within administrator preparation programs. Experiences must be devised which enable the administrator to build a "self" adequate to these tasks. In touching only some high points in the development of humanistic or "third force" psychology before attempting some extrapolations to the field of educational administration, the ASCD Yearbook for 1962, Perceiving, Behaving, Becoming: A New Focus for Education (10) should be given attention. It contains papers by A. H. Maslow, Carl Rogers, Earl Kelley, and Arthur Combs. Most of the implications of the study for educational administration have not been explicitly drawn out, as I suspect they will need to be if the book is to have its deserved effect. As Tope (3) has commented in this general connection: It is generally agreed today that school administrators need . . . better understanding of human behavior and development so that the human resources in a school district can achieve a more constructive working relationship, and finally they need a broader understanding of the environment in which school administrators operate. The difficulty comes in trying to translate these needy and requirements into courses and learning experiences which can be expected to produce desirable results. (Italics added.) Some of the tone of the Yearbook can be grasped from the preface: Perceiving, Behaving, Becoming is timely precisely because continuous consideration of the basic foundations of the educational program is inescapable. Regardless of what technological MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 3 devices are adopted, what organizational patterns prevail, what curricular content emerges, the three basic foundations of education—social, psychological and philosophical—are central in the making of the educational program. Essentially the 1962 Yearbook of the ASCD provides bold new insights on one of the three foundations, the psychological, with related implications affecting social philosophical aspects. Perceiving, Behaving, Becoming deals with the truly adequate person, adequate in the sense of Webster's synonym sufficient and in the sense of the author's equivalent phrases fully functioning and selfactualizing, rather than adequate in the corrupted usage, "good enough to get by." The yearbook describes how the schools may help develop such persons. . . . The authors deal with the heart of the educational process as they propose a new focus for education. If they prove to be correct in their espousal of a "third force" in psychology, neither behavioristic nor Freudian, a hopeful vista as to man's potentiality stretches ahead. Following up the theme of the adequate person, the Yearbook committee does make the following points about administrators: Adequate school administrators and teachers have qualities of dignity, integrity and autonomy and are able to create the "open" environments to nurture these characteristics in each other as well as in children and youth. An administrator should be chosen in part for his ability to release creativity in the adults who work with him, and for the ability to utilize the wisdom of others to help him reach judgments. Having genuine self-trust, he considers it a strength to wait for others, and does everything possible to act upon the best pooled judgments of his staff. He takes care not to allow the daily pressures to distract him from his goal, putting productive professional staff relationships first among the conditions necessary for a good school system. Even the administrator originally chosen because he had a reputation as a good disciplinarian or needed to be "retired" from his job as football coach can learn to behave in these ways. These are not mystical matters, but things that can be learned by anyone. (Italics added.) The recognition that "becoming an adequate person—becoming an adequate administrator" are problems of learning seems to me to put the Volume XIX, No. 21 problem in a most hopeful and challenging context. Maslow (11) makes an intriguing expansion of this point: I have even gone so far as to say that science is a social institution which makes it possible for uncreative people to create and discover and innovate, just as I could also say that science is a social institution which makes it possible for an unintelligent man to do intelligent things. (If this is thought through carefully, it will be seen not as a derogation of science, but as one of its chief glories. The "colleaguehood" which characterizes science is a technique whereby limited humanity can transcend its limitations.) The acceptance of these views necessitates more emphasis on "producing" adequate people in educational administration rather than merely "selecting" them, I submit. To draw another inference: "intelligence" is much more susceptible to being "created" than our old static psychologies permitted us to hope (12). The Yearbook committee continues concerning these learned skills: The first step is to discover they are important and worth seeking, for none of us spend much energy on what does not seem important to us. The number of adequate persons our schools produce can be increased by administrators who consider it important to surround children with persons of dignity and integrity. Such an administrator realizes the relationships of democratic processes to be the development of free, honest people, and he takes care to make these processes a part of his own interaction with the staff and the children. He is aware that it is not the matter of administrator-staff contacts that is important, nor the particular tasks entrusted to staff members. It is, rather, the quality of trust, of faith, which penetrates these situations. An effective leader must really trust, not manipulate, people or decisions. He notes that mutual respect for dignity and integrity emerges where trust exists, and self-other appreciation runs deeply. Eventually, such behavior becomes habitual, a part of the "inner core" of his personality, and he is to a greater degree selfactualizing. Supervisors and settings "come alive." see themselves and opportunities in the MANAS Reprint principals working in such Their self-trust leads them to to see the school and its larger context of society. May 25, 1966 4 Professional work is not a daily chore, stifling and rigid, but a service which is satisfying because it is at once self-fulfilling and creative. What are some other implications for educational administration that seem to flow from the context provided by humanistic psychology? Or, at least, what are my necessarily idiosyncratic perceptions of the connections which may exist? It is integral to the point of view I would propound that the reader not interpret my labeling of my perceptions as "idiosyncratic" as selfdeprecation. I assert my acceptance of the "process" nature of man; a conception which has felt the "existentialist sting" (13). May I take my stand with Bugental (14) who, in celebration of the uniqueness of individual perceptions, comments: I ought to say a word about the style in which I choose to write. I am increasingly impressed with the dangerously pathogenic trend toward the mechanization of man. It seems to me that more and more we treat ourselves and others as interchangeable units, that identity and individuality get washed out in the process of acculturization. Too many books and articles . . . are written as though the authors have made discoveries that are true for all people. . . . I do not think doing so is existentially valid. . . . I hope that implicit throughout the pages of this book will be my conviction, "Man is a constantly evolving process, about whom we never say the final word—these are my best estimates as of today." I and you must both recognize our constant evolution and each take responsibility in this encounter. I have the impression we are at about the stage of history in the preparation of administrators that is roughly analogous to the state of warfare in the late eighteenth century. We still wear our scarlet coats, sabers and march in long columns. We attend classes, write term papers, take tests, earn degrees—all in the most gentlemanly fashion. We pride ourselves on our "objectivity," in the sense that methodological preoccupations are so much easier to justify than normative and substantive convictions. This contributes to a pervasive neutrality toward the urgent questions of our half-century. Brameld Volume XIX, No. 21 (15) exposes one of our main strategies for putting down commitment: . . . noncommitment to anything except alleged objectivity is made to appear virtuous by accusing any teacher or professor, who does happen to care strongly enough to express vigorous commitments, of falling victim to some form of wild extremism or fanatical dogmatism. We maintain our "privacy"—what Ronald Lippitt (16) has termed "the collusion of ignorance." We avoid CONFRONTATION like the plague. To round out the metaphor: the world "misses its main chance" in a million small, boring, wasteful ways and a few spectacular ways—and we are still polishing our dueling pistols. We must begin to think, with Bennis (17), "beyond bureaucracy." The work of O. Hobart Mowrer (18, 19) on the need for "radical openness" needs to be extrapolated into the administrative realm. Jourard (20), Szasz (21), Schofield (22), Berne (23, 24), Glasser (25) are changing the psychotherapeutic scene enormously and are providing more and more constructs which can be useful in thinking about administration. In Buber's (26) terms, we must see how we can foster an "I-Thou" propensity in administrators rather than an "I-It." Bugental (14) puts the problem in these terms: I am concerned that too much mechanomorphic thinking—in psychology and sociology and medicine, to be sure, but also in business and advertising, and in government and politics, and even in religion and philosophy—too much of this depersonalized, inhuman thinking may get accepted as the way to think about human problems and human decisions. I want to add my voice to those who are calling on men to awaken to a destiny greater than that of being Mark I computers . . . living, at its most real, in a creative process. It is an artistic process in which in some measure we choose our way of being at each moment. . . You and I have learned to think of ourselves and other people as being thus and so: bright and stupid, friendly or unpleasant, talkative or shy, and so on. And so people are. But partly they are so because they were taught just as we were, because they feel that is the way a person should be. MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 5 It does seem to simplify what might be confusing if everybody kept changing all the time. administration? If so, what activities lead to such a perception? Maslow (11) says: But, then, of course, that is just what everybody does do. Everybody is changing all the time. Just as the physiologist tells us all cells in our bodies are replaced each seven years or so, so the psychological aspects of us are in some changes at all times. Education can no longer be considered essentially or only a learning process; it is now also a character training, a person-training process. Of course this is not altogether true, but it is very largely true, and it will become truer and truer year by year. (I think this is perhaps the most radical and blunt and unmistakeable way of saying what I am trying to say.) The past has become almost useless in some areas of life. People who depend too much upon the past have become almost useless in many professions. We need a new kind of human being who can divorce himself from his past, who feels strong and courageous and trusting enough to trust himself in the present situation, to handle the problem well in an improvising way, without previous preparation, if need be. The parallels between psychotherapy and administration need to be studied in detail: both try to effect behavioral changes; both are (or should be in a democratic society) concerned with the development of the potential of all individuals in their ken, etc. A. H. Maslow (27), for instance, has asked, "What is a mentally healthy human being?" Just as the modern doctor's conception of the healthy human body is certainly not founded on the bodily functions of the statistically "average man" but rather on some idealized image of what the body can and should do when it functions in a balanced and integrated manner, so Maslow has approached the study of the healthy human personality—the "self-actualizing" person. Maslow concludes that this creature has the following defining traits: self-integrity, spontaneity, creativity, joy of life, realistic perception, self-love and compassionate love, responsibility, courage, and, occasionally perhaps, the experience of "peak moments" of mystic selflessness in ecstatic union with others or with nature. Self-actualizing people are not inclined to let themselves be exploited; they regard their lives as worthy of rich engagement in autonomous realization of their potentialities in society. Persons like Albert Einstein, Mrs. F. D. Roosevelt, William James, the older Lincoln, and Jefferson, have been tentatively chosen as most closely approximating this ideal type. The notion of the clinical worker as a "sensitive instrument" has become an appealing concept for me; I have tended to transfer this concept to my viewing of the role of the administrator. The concept of the "helping person" (28) seems to provide a connection; can this be demonstrated to be systematically useful in Volume XIX, No. 21 What could be the nature of "character training" or "person training" in the field of educational administration? Answers to this question will undoubtedly emerge. I want to urge art activities, especially involvement in theater and dance. The viewing of Albee's Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf? or Williams' The Night of the Iguana, for example, could be approached as a major exercise in developing administrative sensitivity; this could be especially useful for exploring the construct of "games" and its relation to administrative strategies. (In this connection see especially Berne's Games People Play (23A) and Timothy Leary's "How to Change Behavior" (23B). Much more stress on all kinds of art activities would seem crucial. Brameld (15) contends that: So long as the schools and colleges of America continue to yield to industrial, governmental, and military pressures—continue, therefore, to give priority to the physical sciences, mathematics, and other quantitative disciplines at the expense of the arts and other qualitative disciplines—just so long do they contribute to a standard for the educated man that distorts, narrows, prostrates, and eventually sickens whole populations . . . this . . . is an educational scandal of the present period. In the degree that leaders of our schools condone or at least quietly acquiesce in this imbalance, they too share responsibility for its prolongation. MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 6 Research on creativity (29, 30, 31) yields more and more data on the importance of nonverbal education. The notion of educationthrough-art with its stress on nonobjectivity has the advantage of reducing the stress on right and wrong, correctness and incorrectness. Therefore the individual can be confronted with himself, with his own courage or anxiety, with his stereotypes or his freshness, etc. The basic conception toward which I am striving to move in this paper is stated by Perrin Stryker (32) in the following terms: The historical significance of the full-grown executive can only be dimly appreciated. He is the remarkable—and still remarkably rare—product of a process that is itself history-making. Indeed the twentieth century might be recorded as the epoch in which men for the first time attempted to cultivate, methodically and on a large scale, a class of superior managers. This is no slight matter. The serious effort expended today in large corporations to find and develop those who can expertly manage (which includes helping others to develop as managers) is potentially a more beneficial lesson for mankind than all the wonders of scientific technology. For when the process of executive development is seriously undertaken it should eventually demonstrate that a well-developed executive is one who possesses the qualities of a well-developed individual. ( Italics added.) It does not seem to me to be a far step beyond the conception of the administrator as "one who possesses the qualities of a welldeveloped individual" to a concern with the direction of "post-organic" evolution—themes characteristic of the "Trans-humanism" of Sir Julian Huxley (33), the new synthesis of evolutionary concepts provided by de Chardin (34) and the work of Theodore Brameld within educational philosophy. Briefly, this position can be put as follows: evolution occurs in three great stages: the pre-organic stage of non-living matter, the concern of sciences like astronomy and geology; the organic stage, the concern of the biological sciences; and the post-organic stage, the concern of the sciences of human behavior. Crucial and unique to the post-organic stage is Volume XIX, No. 21 that it is the only one of the three not entirely the result of blind forces in nature. Man, with his "time binding" capacity, is the only evolutiondirecting animal. This concept is well summarized and discussed by Theodore Brameld (15); the challenge may be caught in the following passage: An educational leader . . . may thus be defined in one sense as a leader concerned to gear the powers of his institution to evolutionary processes on the post-organic level. Abstract as this statement surely must sound, it is not at all abstract in the mandate that follows from it: to conceive of education as the foremost means by which man learns how to shoulder the momentous tasks which the mutations of organic nature have thrust upon his species. Not only does evolution tell us that purposes are man-generated and that we alone, whether we like it or not, must determine what we want these purposes to be; it tells us too that the processes by which we struggle to achieve them lie entirely in our collective hands. . . . the educational leader who grasps the full intent . . . becomes . . . a senior partner in the full evolutionary enterprise of nature. I am eager to collaborate with others who see in this direction a fruitful line of research for approaching the problems of social reconstruction and the role of innovative educational leadership. RONALD R. BRINGLE University of Oregon __________ Notes 1. Smith, Philip G., Philosophic-Mindedness in Educational Administration, Columbus, University Press, Ohio State University, 1956. 2. Griffiths, Daniel E., "Research and Theory in Educational Administration" in Griffiths, Daniel E., (editor) Perspectives on Educational Administration and the Behavioral Sciences, Eugene, Center for the Advanced Study of Educational Administration, 1965. 3. Tope, Donald E., et al., The Social Sciences View School Administration, New Jersey, Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1965. 4. Griffiths, Daniel E., (editor) Perspectives on Educational Administration and the Behavioral Sciences, Eugene, Oregon, Center for the MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 7 Advanced Study of Educational Administration, 1965. 5. Severin, Frank T., Humanistic Viewpoints in Psychology, New York McGraw-Hill Book Co., 1965. 22. Schofield, William, Psychotherapy: The Purchase of Friendship, New Jersey? PrenticeHall, Inc., 1964. 23A. Berne, Eric, M.D., Games People Play, New York, Grove Press, Inc., 1964. 6. Allport, Gordon W., "Psychological Models for Guidance" in Mosher Ralph L., Carle, Richard F., Kehas, Chris D. (editors), Guidance An Examination, New York, Harcourt, Brace and World, Inc., 1965. 7. Allport, Gordon W., Becoming, New Haven, Yale University Press, 1955. 24. Berne, Eric, M.D., Transactional Analysis in Psychotherapy, New York, Grove Press, Inc., 1961. 8. Zurcher, Louis A. Jr., "Me! A Philosopher," Personnel Administration, March-April, 1965. 25. Glasser, William, M.D., Reality Therapy, New York, Harper and Row, 1965. 9. Nietzsche, Friedrich, Beyond Good and Evil, New York, Doubleday Anchor Book. 26. Buber, Martin, l and Thou, New York, Scribaer's Sons, 1958. 10. ASCD Yearbook, Perceiving, Behaving, Becoming: A New Focus for Education, Washington, D.C., NEA, 1962. 27. Maslow, A. H., Toward a Psychology of Being. New York, D. Van Nostrand, 1962. 11. Maslow, Abraham H., "The Need for Creative People," Personnel Administration, May-June, 1965. 29. Barron, Frank, Creativity and Psychological Health, New Jersey, D. Van Nostrand Company, Inc., 1963. 12. Combs, Arthur W., "Personality Theory and Its Implications for Curriculum Development," Learning More About Learning, ASCD, 959. 30. Torrance, E. Paul, Education and the Creative Potential, Minneapolis University of Minnesota Press, 1963. 13. Soderquist, Harold O., The Person and Education, Columbus, Merrill Books, 1964. 31. Toynbee, Arnold J., "Our Neglected Creative Minority," Old Oregon. Sept.-Oct., 1965. 14. Bugental J. F. T., The Search f or Authenticity, New York, Holt, Rinehart and Winston, Inc., 1965. 32. Stryker, Perrin, The Character of the Executive, New York, Harper and Brothers, 1960. 15. Brameld, Theodore, "What Education Fosters A Larger View of Man?," Educational Administration—Philosophy in Action, Norman Transcript Press, 1965. 16. Lippitt, Ronald, "The Collusion of Ignorance," Trans-Action, Jan., 1964. 17. Bennis, Warren G., "Beyond Bureaucracy," Trans-Action, July-August, 1965. 23B. Leary, Timothy, "How to Change Behavior" in Bennis, W. G. Schein, E. H. Berlen, D. C., and Steele, F. I. (editors), Interpersonal Dynamics, Hornewood, Ill., Dorsey Press, 1964. 28. Rogers, Carl, On Becoming a Person, 1961. 33. See, for example, Huxley, Julian, New Bottles for New Wine, Chatto 1957, or Essays of a Humanist, Chatto, 1964. 34. Teilhard de Chardin, The Phenomenon of Man, New York, Harper and Row, 1961 In connection with de Chardin and Sir Julian Huxley and their concepts of evolution, see the remarkable new book by Colin Wilson, Beyond the Outsider, Houghton Mifflin Co.. Boston, 1965. 18. Mowrer, O. Hobart, The Crisis in Psychiatry and Religion, New Jersey D. Van Nostrand Co., 1961. 19. ______, The New Group Therapy, New Jersey, D. Van Nostrand Co., 1964. 20. Jourard, Sidney M., The Transparent Self, New Jersey, D. Van Nostrand Co., Inc., 1964. 21. Szasz, Thomas S., The Myth of Mental Illness, New York, Harper & Brothers, 1961. Volume XIX, No. 21 MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 8 REVIEW PHILOSOPHY FOR THE MATURE IT seems a pity that we have no better word than the pedestrian "mature" to characterize the natural audience for Who Is Man?, by Abraham J. Heschel (constituting the Raymond Fred West Lectures, delivered in 1963 at Stanford University, published last year by the Stanford University Press, $3.95). The book will be inviting mainly to readers who no longer have illusions about the "authorities" of our time and who find the profound existential level of Dr. Heschel's inquiry continuous with their own wonderings. While "mature" is an all-purpose honorific that serves to describe individuals who consistently try to live by philosophic values, it is not a word which swells with hidden, transcendent meanings. We don't have such words in our time. There are good words that could be borrowed from the ancient high religions, but these have either been theologically "used up" or they sound precocious to our condition. "Twice-born," from the Indian tradition, is not quite right; getting ready for a second birth would be more accurate, if it is understood that the meaning of the expression is what is at issue. We may be able to wonder about our future development, but we are not ready to catalogue it. Dr. Heschel is concerned with the hidden transcendence in human life. Who Is Man? is a book with many virtues. First and most important, its appeal and provocation depend wholly upon the reader's response out of his own inner being. It is a little surprising, therefore, if you happen to read a bit before looking at the jacket-flap notes on the author, to learn that these rare Humanism-plus musings are the work of "one of the world's most influential theologians," a professor of ethics and mysticism at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. The book seems so independent of tradition, so "pure" in its evocations, that you begin to wonder if the best religious traditions are not those which submit to loss of their identity Volume XIX, No. 21 when transmitted by the wise. If we had to draw a parallel between Dr. Heschel's idea of man and some other view, we should choose Pico (Oration on the Dignity of Man) for the comparison. Dr. Heschel's conception of man is of a selfconscious intelligence engaged in an endless quest for the meaning of his being. This search for meaning is not something that a man ought to add to his being; the search is an essential of his being. And the uncertainty of his struggle to know himself is also an inalienable reality. But these blunt phrases can by no means convey the spirit of Dr. Heschel's book, which is made with delicacy and nuance. Its paragraphs seem to result from a meditative turning of a kaleidoscope filled with fundamental intuitions— luminous elements of thought which are seen again and again in slightly different positions. The repetition never palls. The repetition often resembles a succession of chords which are so familiar to the reader that he waits excitedly for the one that will resonate most with his own thinking, confirming a private climax. All quotation from a book of this sort suffers gravely from what is left out. It is like hearing only a small portion of a fugue. Even so, this brief argument from the common elements of subjective experience conveys both the deep security and the daring of a man who knows how to reflect: What is happening in the life of man, and how are we to grasp it? We ask in order to know how to live. The nature of our inquiry stands in marked contrast to other inquiries. Other issues we explore out of curiosity; the issue of man we must explore out of personal involvement. In other issues inquirer and theme are apart: I know the Rocky Mountains, but I am not the Rocky Mountains. Yet in regard to knowledge of myself I am what I seek to know, being and knowing, subject and object, are one. We have seen that we cannot reflect about the humanity of man and retain a relationship of complete detachment, since all understanding of man is derived from self-understanding, and one can never remain aloof from one's own self. MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 9 The most valuable insights into the human situation have been gained not through patient introspection or systematic scrutiny, but rather through surprise and shock of dramatic failures. Indeed, it is usually in the wake of frustration, in moments of crisis and self-disillusionment, and rarely out of astonishment at man's glorious achievements, that radical reflection comes to pass. This is an age in which it is impossible to think about the human situation without shame, anguish, and disgust, in which it is impossible to experience enjoyment without grief and unending heartache, to observe personal triumphs without pangs of embarrassment. Why do we ask the question about man? Because the knowledge about man which we had accepted as self-evident has proved to be a mass of bubbles bursting at the slightest increase in temperature. Some of us live in dismay caused by what man has revealed about himself. This book is rich in the philosophical diagnosis that should replace the endless sociological studies of human defeat: My view of the world and my understanding of the self determine each other. The complete manipulation of the world results in the complete instrumentalization of the self. The world presents itself in two ways to me. The world as a thing I own, the world as a mystery I face. What I own is a trifle, what I face is sublime. I am careful not to waste what I own; I must learn not to miss what I face. . . . Awe is a sense for the transcendence, for the reference everywhere to mystery beyond all things. It enables us to perceive in the world intimations of the divine, to sense in small things the beginning of infinite significance, to sense the ultimate in the common and the simple; to feel in the rush of the passing the stillness of the eternal. What we cannot comprehend by analysis, we become aware of in awe. has emerged undiminished, yet now informed with measure and full awareness of pain. How one longs for the survival of this quality in one's children, as they go forth into the labyrinth, each to meet his personal Minotaur! Will they ever return unscathed? Is there a sense of balance now coming into the world? Is there a sanity being born to individual man that, slowly but surely, will communicate itself to social man? Surely, a world that is right side up can develop in no other way. Are there, then, no imperfections in this book? It offers so much that we hesitate to find any fault. Toward the end there is this passage: The most significant intellectual act is to decide what the most fundamental question is to live by. Ontology inquires: What is being? Epistemology inquires: What is thinking? The heart of man inquires: What is expected of me? Or in the language of the Bible: What is required of me? The source of insight is an awareness of being called upon to answer. Over and above personal problems, there is an objective challenge to overcome inequity, injustice, helplessness, suffering, carelessness, oppression. Over and above the din of desires, there is a calling, a demanding, a waiting, an expectation. There is a question that follows me wherever I turn. What is expected of me? What is demanded of me? Well, there are some men—let us name them Prometheans—who seem to know what they must do with their lives as surely as they must breathe. They are not "called"—they simply declare. The meaning inscribed in the stuff of their being grows articulate in action. And the "mystery" loses none of its secrecy and wonder from being spelled out by these men who make their own demands upon themselves. Faith is not assent to a proposition; faith is attachment to transcendence, to the meaning beyond the mystery. . . . Forfeit your sense of awe, let your conceit diminish your ability to revere, and the universe becomes a market place for you. This is a simple wisdom. It is as though the splendor of a glad and wondering childhood had been filtered through the ordeal of modern life and Volume XIX, No. 21 MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 10 knowledge of "everything," but he is himself "nothing," without the rest. COMMENTARY "THE ADMINISTRATOR" THIS week's lead article, by Ronald Bringle, stirs long thoughts about administration—any kind of administration. There are those who have a tender regard for their own creative ability and are heard to complain about the onerous administrative duties which fall to their lot. In many cases—perhaps most—there is something to the complaint. Administration often develops in a pattern of busywork to give importance to small-minded administrators and to make a screen preventing the confrontations which good administration necessarily involves. Also to be considered, however, is the fact that administration is a limited or secularized kind of teaching; within the merely mechanistic frame of procedures and traffic management, administration involves the same sort of evocative relationship as exists between teacher and pupil. The teacher must not do, nor can he guarantee, the work of the pupil. He can only instruct and inspire. So with the administrator. You could say that in some respects his task is more difficult than that of the teacher, since in many cases he can't actually do the work of the specialists under his supervision, yet must direct their efforts and relate their activities with those of other persons and to the common goal. Recognition is shunned by the good administrator. Praise embarrasses him; it seems a random use, a waste of the precious materials he needs for far more important purposes. He is occupationally conditioned to be a self-effacing man. He is continually concerned with studying other people, with feeling what they feel, seeing what they see, in order to understand why they behave as they do. Seeing more than they see, as he ordinarily must, is of little value unless he also can see as they do; and the fact that he sees "more" does not result because he is wiser, but only because of his wider field of action. He has An administrator also has need of a sense of humor, since it will often be the case that what wisdom he possesses can find no other outlet. For illustration of the uses of this quality, and some others, we turn to an address delivered by Robert M. Hutchins twenty years ago, entitled, "The Administrator." (Printed in the Journal of Higher Education, November, 1946.) Somewhat at random, we quote Mr. Hutchins: I have been an administrator so long that I can tell you, I think, what an administrator ought to be. And I can do this even though I have never succeeded in being a good one myself. I discovered the things I know too late for them to be of use to me. There was nobody to give me this lecture when I began to administer. Even if there had been, it might not have helped much; for as Aristotle remarked, men do not become good-by listening to lectures on moral philosophy. . . . Our universities present an especially acute aspect of the general problem of the one and the many. A university should be one; but it is peculiarly the prey of centrifugal forces, which are always driving it apart. This is because no end has yet been discovered and accepted by the American university sufficiently clear to make sense of its activities, to establish a standard for criticizing them, and to unify those who are carrying them on. Even a mob will disintegrate if it does not know where it is going. The administrator must accept a special responsibility for the discovery, clarification, definition, and proclamation of the end. But he does not own the institution. The administrator's responsibility is to get others to join in the search for the end and to try to lead all his constituency to see and accept it when it has been found. He must conceive of himself as presiding over a continuous discussion of the aim and destiny of the institution. He must insist upon this discussion, and he must see that it never flags. The difficulty is that the aim and destiny of an institution are not discovered by instinct or tradition; they must be arrived at by creative thought. For this, the administrator has neither the time, the atmosphere, nor the education which it demands. It is suggestive that since Francis Bacon, who was, after all, a bad administrator and a bad man, no Volume XIX, No. 21 MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 11 administrator who carried major responsibilities has published anything of significance. In our own time, Hawthorne, Arnold, Trollope, and Mill have held administrative posts and done creative work. But Hawthorne was an officeholder, rather than an administrator, and the other three did not carry major responsibilities. Nor did any of them do any important thinking about the end of their administrative activity. There is little published evidence that any administrative officer has done so since Marcus Aurelius. . . . The reward of the administrator may not be public memorials, religious rites, and a pleasant journey to the Islands of the Blest. For these things he should not care at all. His satisfaction will come, even if he fails, from having seen and attempted one of the most difficult works of the mind and one of the most challenging of human tasks. Volume XIX, No. 21 MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 12 science and the democratization of political existence which undermined man's reliance on the value of these factors as guiding principles. FRONTIERS Revival of Religion? [This article, by Alfred Reynolds, is reprinted by permission from the London Letter for November/December, 1965. —Editors.] THE Twentieth Century has completed a process which started much earlier: a weakening of the individual's involvement in the patterns of life and the institutions of his society. He lost his chance to do creative or even productive work, to participate actively in his leisure time pursuits or to be fully involved in the life of family, tribe, nation or Church. He is a prey to confusion, loneliness and neuroses. Yet all these deprivations have had a positive counterpart. The loosening of the social structure gave the individual a greater degree of (superficial) independence; alienation from his labour brought about an increase of material security; his neuroses were less deadly and painful than the epidemics and diseases conquered by medical science. His confusion was no longer due to general ignorance or illiteracy, but to the growing complexity of human knowledge. The emptiness of his leisure was deplorable, but at least he suffered no exhaustion through overwork. His loneliness was unhappy, but he did not encounter the risks and dangers of aloneness. In one sphere and in one sphere alone he has been deprived of something which gave him a sense of purpose and security, and this one thing has no counterpart among the doubtful blessings of modern civilisation: he has been deprived of his religion, which for many generations gave an answer to all the burning and awkward questions as to man's origin and purpose, the meaning of life, the order of the universe and the pattern of moral behaviour. He has been left without an explanation and without guidance. The first reaction was to seek a substitute in scientific knowledge and political commitment. Paradoxically, it was the never-ending growth of Volume XIX, No. 21 The second reaction, panicky rather than rational, was an attempt to return to religion. Many an intellectual of the first order jumped into the lifeboat, performing the "sacrificio intellectus" in the hope of reaching haven after their Odyssey of disillusionment, confusion and loneliness. Both the science-worshipper and the surrender-monger have had their try. Neither of them has found a solution which could satisfy the many as religion—or the few as scepticism—had done. They are on the open sea and their sails are not set for a reassuring harbour. The difficulty of thinking people to identify themselves with any of the great religions, or their lesser offshoots, is perhaps due to the stagnation of religious thought for two thousand years. For many centuries the influence of an all-powerful Church prevented the Christian nations from questioning basic assumptions and expressing disagreement even on issues of interpretation. The Reformation paved the way for individuals to interpret in accordance with their own light, but even the new religious bodies soon assumed the same posture of infallibility as the Church had done "in ages past." The basic assumptions themselves were never questioned and the primitive doctrines of a by-gone age were merely embellished by theological speculation aiming at their justification. Since the Reformation, science, art and philosophy had made great strides to satisfy man's spiritual curiosity (if by spiritual we mean man's undying and unending effort to comprehend truth), yet religious thought was still under the spell of strange but effective taboos. Even in the nineteenth century a courageous priest like Robert Taylor was jailed for daring to question the validity of scriptural claims. In the meantime, his Diegesis (1883) and many other works of doubt, query and scholarship were published and found an avid readership. MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 13 Yet, even today, towards the end of the twentieth century, the basic tenets of Christianity, long shown to be fallacious or even fraudulent, still dominate our religious horizon. Learned books by theologians-cum-philosophers, masterly disputations by Christian existentialists of high literary standing and pseudo-scientific treatises on the truth of the Bible are published year by year. These efforts, still a manifestation of religious stagnation and spiritual poverty, are yet a long way off from even the religious insight of Jesus, Buddha or Lao-Tzu. They can only be considered and explained as desperate attempts at selfjustification and as rationalizations of a psychological condition. They could be dismissed with amused contempt were it not for their arrogant claim that anyone who knows of man's irrational longings and spiritual thirst must regard their pronouncements as the alternative to narrowminded and utilitarian materialism. day, non-Christian existentialists who betray their hankering for the security of the past when existence and the world were not "absurd" but had an objective purpose. Those who do not derive their spiritual nourishment from the roots of a dying religion, will find it in the meaning and purpose they give to their own existence. They will not complain of the "absurd." They know that subjective values are the spiritual counterpart of the objective values of a pseudo-spiritual doctrine. And they know that preoccupation with religious thought has not stagnated in the quest of the human mind. It has been transferred from the realm of institutional religion to the realm of philosophy. ALFRED REYNOLDS London It could be true that their insistence on timehonoured clichés, their attachment to hoary doctrines, and their loyalty to institutions which have themselves grown materialist and utilitarian, is the obstacle to spiritual revival. By spiritual revival we mean, of course, an attitude more interested in truth than expediency. This kind of curiosity is "religious" in that it "binds," committing the enquirer and engaging him in a lifelong quest, as the truth is not attainable except for the simple-minded. Can we, then, as some advocate, establish a new religion, a new myth? Religions and myths are born, never made. They enter the world through the believer; they are not brought to the world as an intellectual offering. Never in the history of man has a religion been manufactured in the laboratories of those who knew "what the masses need." There is no doubt that the decline of religious faith has left a gap in man's consciousness and made him aware of the futile longing for an objective meaning. The "absurd" of Soren Kierkegaard has entered the terminology of latterVolume XIX, No. 21 MANAS Reprint May 25, 1966 ... - [detail] - [similar]
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