1. But must the rise of love wait for the end of progress. Humankind is endlessly creative and innovative. And yet, the brown hills bear witness of … so thought provoking, Steve. Thanks.

  2. To my thinking, “progress” was the creation of the liberal, modernist era, a result of the era of industrialization. It was a concept shared by both capitalist and socialist ideologies, which differed only in the methods of achieving it. More recently, post-modern critiques of all things modern have called into question the assumptions underlying the notion of progress. Thus, Thomas Oden, theologian, writes about the recovery of paleo-orthodoxy. Michael White, psychotherapist and one of the pioneers of narrative therapy, writes about the recovery of folk psychology and the use of “experience near” language. There is, under the notion of progress, the assumption of the imperfection of the human race that requires development. Behind the reaction to this, in terms of writers like Oden and White, is the assumption of something valuable and innocent inherent in the human race that needs to be recovered and treasured.
    – well, you asked:)

  3. Well alright. That notion of progress is something I hope we could recover. But our common “experience near” notion of progress, I submit, is an ideology, as Chris Hedges has said somewhere, which at its core, is about maximizing corporate profit at the expense of the citizenry. Something far more heinous than the modern liberal understanding. This is the “progress” I was referring to.

  4. I’m not sure what you understood by a “common ‘experience near’ notion of progress.” As Michael White uses the expression, he refers to the common language that people use to describe their experiences. For example, depression is a medical term that explains nothing until one tells the story of loss and sadness. “Sadness” is the experience-near term because that’s what the person actually felt and likely would have said if s/he hadn’t been taught that it might be “depression”. This preference for experience near language is of a piece with the protest against modern progress, which needs a medical term like depression to sell medications that are supposed to treat it. This is possibly one of the most egregious examples of maximizing corporate profit at the expense of the citizenry. I’m with you on this, I think. But, in my understanding, this is the logical outcome of the modern liberal era.

  5. That’s helpful Sam. Thanks. I thought if I used the term in an uninformed manner you would elucidate:)

    Certainly, labeling (Depression, ADD, etc.) is a marketing tool that often leaves behind the well being of its intended and advertized beneficiaries.

    As for the modern liberal era, (as opposed to classical liberalism?) otherwise known as ‘progress’, or liberal-conservatism, I agree we are experiencing its logical outcome. Ah, labels.

  6. Yes labels create categories that define the goal for benefiting humankind with economic goods and, like nationalistic imperialism of the past plunders the environment and vulnerable people for the benefit of the privileged. Ah to be free – “Consider the lilies of the field, they toil not nor do they spin…” was the assurance by he who cared for the poor and the suffering.

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