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Download Light on the Ancient Worlds: A New Translation with Selected by Frithjof Schuon PDF

By Frithjof Schuon

Those essays examines the non secular patrimony of humanity.

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Extra info for Light on the Ancient Worlds: A New Translation with Selected Letters (Library of Perennial Philosophy)

Example text

It is sufficient to add that the sun itself also represents—and necessarily so—the divine Spirit manifested and that on this account it must “wane” in setting and “wax” in rising; it gives light and heat because it is the Principle, and it sets because it is but the manifestation of the Principle. From this point of view, the moon is the peripheral reflection of this manifestation. Christ is the sun, and the Church is the moon; “It is expedient for you that I go away”, but the “Son of man will come again”.

Moreover, when we say that certain acts are opposed to the “divine Nature”, we do so with the reservation that metaphysically nothing can be opposed to this Nature; Islam ex­presses this in affirming that nothing can be separated from the divine Will, not even sin;28 such ideas are in agreement with non-Semitic perspectives, which always insist strongly on the relativity of phenomena and the variability of definitions according to perspectives. It is this essential and as it were non-formal conception of sin that explains the absence of an elaborated doctrine of sin in a tra26 Islam is not ignorant of this viewpoint; witness the Koranic story of the mysterious sage who scandalizes his disciple by actions having a secret intention while being outwardly illegal.

If there are no grounds for finding fault with modern science to the extent it studies a domain within the limits of its competence—the precision and effectiveness of its results are proof of this—it is nonetheless necessary to add this im­portant reservation: the principle, the range, and the development of a science or an art is a function of Revelation and of the requirements of spiritual life, without forgetting those of social equilibrium; it is absurd to claim un­limited rights for something in itself contingent, such as science or art.

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