The History of Eternity : James E. Winder
You cannot help but wonder what and why you are. The History of Eternity is a book that again and again answers these questions, as it celebrates the tragic joy of wonder at the enigma of your existence.
There will always be a clamoring after elusive fact. There will always be a hankering for some durable theory that will explain the fact. There will always be an inability to match the one wholly with the other. Because something is always left out, there will always persist a stubbornly invisible and intractable remainder. And this remainder, this dark matter behind every thought, behind every desire, behind every joy, behind every sorrow, will continue to populate your universe with wonder. Read this book, if you will, and share that wonder.
You are born into a conspiracy of significance, already entangled with your equally lonely others. The history of eternity, the tension between nowhere and now here, defines the struggle between the life you are living now and whatever there may be of the life to come.
The History of Eternity is a series of broken elegies to those who have mattered, to their moments and your moments, to their sanity and your sanity, to their madness and your madness.
The History of Eternity is one man’s meditation on the reverberating shock of his encounter with Henry Adams, Aristotle, Augustine, Bach, Balzac, Beckett, Bergson, Bloch, Boehme, Bonhoeffer, Cervantes, Chekhov, Cicero, Claudel, Dante, Darwin, Derrida, Emily Dickinson, Dostoevsky, Eckhart, Emerson, Ezekiel, Faulkner, Gide, Goethe, Heraclitus, Herodotus, Hume, Isaiah, Henry James, Jeremiah, Samuel Johnson, Kafka, Kierkegaard, D.H. Lawrence, Leopardi, Levinas, Joan of Arc, Joe Louis, Lucretius, Machiavelli, Malraux, McTaggart, Milton, Montaigne, Newton, Nietzsche, Parmenides, Pascal, Plotinus, Plutarch, Proust, Rabelais, Rembrandt, Rosenzweig, Rousseau, Sartre, Schopenhauer, Schubert, Adam Smith, Sophocles, Spinoza, Edith Stein, Wallace Stevens, Tocqueville, Van Gogh, Virgil, von Hofmannsthal, Wagner, Weil, Whitehead, Wittgenstein, Woolf, Yeats, and many others.
Considered collectively, and as one integral whole, these philosophic meditations in poetic form echo the meaning of eternity as reflected in the troubled hearts, minds, and lives of 144 historic individuals, famous or unknown. There is – in the history of philosophy and literature – nothing akin to it in nature and scope.
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