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Nowadays to be intelligible is to be found out""- it is possible philosopher-theologian Gabriel Marcel, at some early self-defensive moment, took the Wilde sally to heart. For certainly on occasions one wonders whether his metaphysical plummetings are really as deep as all that. The work here, a collection of lectures and essays published over 20 years ago in France, celebrates themes and tendencies, which are influenced by, among others, Bergson, Kierkegaard and Bradley. They also contain his ine qua non, from the ""groping for"" experience beyond the empirical in the search for the transcendent, to the difference between Being and Having and the dichotomies of the ""I-thou"" as against the depersonalizing ""he"", along with the recurrent use of his favorite adjective paradoxical. Dubbed a ""Christian existentialist"", Marcel is reflective, adventurous and analytical; like the title, he's full of a creative fidelity, always in process, always seeking out, as a profoundly religious man, discoveries of a human and divine nature, something he calls the ""metaproblematic"". The essence of man, he continues rather Sartrianically, is to be in a situation, yet it is ""mystery alone that reunites. Without mystery, life could not be lived"", and the incarnation is ""not a fact but rather the datum with response to which a fact becomes possible"". Marcel's a difficult man, but his moral urgency is unquestionable and his philosophical pyrotechnics almost legendary.

Pub Date: Jan. 24th, 1963
ISBN: 0823221830
Publisher: Farrar, Straus & Co.