alienation

Whoever undertakes a long Journey, if he be wise, makes it his Business to find out an agreeable Companion. How cautious then should He be, who is to take a Journey for Life, whose Fellow-Traveler must not part with him but at the Grave; his Companion at Bed and Board and Sharer of all the Pleasures and Fatigues of his Journey; as the Wife must be to the Husband! She is no such Sort of Ware, that a Man can be rid of when he pleases: When once that’s purchas’d, no Exchange, no Sale, no Alienation can be made: She is an inseparable Accident to Man: Marriage is a Noose, which, fasten’d about the Neck, runs the closer, and fits more uneasy by our struggling to get loose: ‘Tis a Gordian Knot which none can unty, and being twisted with our Thread of Life, nothing but the Schyth of Death can cut it.

Man's alienation from the earth... was the beginning of all trouble and misery that have plagued him ever since

The great omission in American life is solitude; not loneliness, for this is an alienation that thrives most in the midst of crowds, but that zone of time and space free from outside pressure which is the incubator of the spirit.

Modern secularity has offered another way of dealing with religious pluralism. As religious traditions lose their importance as means of self-understanding and community identification, their differences and mutual exclusiveness diminish in importance. Alienation from any particular religious faith tends to move the question of religious particularity into the realm of indifference, as life is determined by nonreligious values and institutions. Yet secularity has been no more successful in establishing human community than has the religious vision. The competing claims of nationalism, economic imperialism, and ideological triumphalism are also demonic forms of particularity that have not been able to establish a new universality in human community.

We are born into a world where alienation awaits us… Alienation as our present destiny is achieved only by outrageous violence perpetuated by human beings on human beings.

Sin is not exhausted in describing individual acts which aren’t very nice. “Sin” is fundamentally a description of our entire situation, one of separation from God, alienation from him, arising out of our rebellion, our refusal to do his will, our insistence upon the following of our wills.

The seduction of war is insidious because so much of what we are told about it is true; It does create a sense of comradeship, which obliterates our alienation and makes us, for perhaps the only time of our life, feel we belong. War allows us to rise above our small stations in life. We find nobility in a cause and feelings of selflessness and even bliss. And at a time of soaring deficits and financial scandals and the very deterioration of our domestic fabric, war is a fine diversion. War, for those who enter into combat, has a dark beauty, filled with the monstrous and the grotesque. The Bible calls it the "lust of the eye" and warns believers against it. War gives us a distorted sense of self; it gives us meaning.

There is no alienation that a little power will not cure.

Infants instinctively resist enculturation because they intuitively sense in it a denial of life that robs us of our spirit and our loving, willing, thinking, being. Resistance is futile. Without exception, these cultural techniques involve carefully masked threats that prey upon the child’s rapidly learned fear of pain, harm, or deprivation, and more primal anxiety over separation or alienation from parent, caregiver, or society. “Do this or you will suffer the consequences.” This threat, in fact, underlies every facet of our life from our first potty training through university exams.

Private property has made us so stupid and one-sided that an object is ours only when we have it - when it exists for us as capital, or when it is directly possessed... In the place of all physical and mental senses there has therefore come to be the sheer alienation of all these senses, the sense of having. The human being has been reduced to this absolute poverty in order that he might yield his inner wealth to the outer world.

By alienation is meant a mode of experience in which the person experiences himself as an alien. He has become, one might say, estranged from himself. He does not experience himself as the center of his world, as the creator of his own acts — but his acts and their consequences have become his masters, whom he obeys, or whom he may even worship. The alienated person is out of touch with himself as he is out of touch with any other person. He, like the others, are experienced as things are experienced; with the senses and with common sense, but at the same time without being related to oneself and to the world outside positively.

In the development of both capitalism and communism, as we visualize them in the next fifty or a hundred years, the processes that encourage human alienation will continue. Both systems are developing into managerial societies, their inhabitants well fed, well clad, having their wishes satisfied, and not having wishes that cannot be satisfied. Men are increasingly automatons, who make machines which act like men and produce men who act like machines; there reason deteriorates while their intelligence rises, thus creating the dangerous situation of equipping man with the greatest material power without the wisdom to use it.

Both education and religion need to ground themselves within the story of the universe as we now understand this story through empirical knowledge. Within this functional cosmology, we can overcome our alienation and begin the renewal of life on a sustainable basis. Th is story is a numinous revelatory story that could evoke the vision and the energy required to bring not only ourselves but the entire planet into a new order of magnificence.

Both education and religion need to ground themselves within the story of the universe as we now understand this story through empirical knowledge. Within this functional cosmology, we can overcome our alienation and begin the renewal of life on a sustainable basis. This story is a numinous revelatory story that could evoke the vision and the energy required to bring not only ourselves but the entire planet into a new order of magnificence.

In general, kids have very little tolerance for humiliation or failure. One of a student's most important goals is to make it through the day without embarrassment. Imagine then, the frustration of children with differences in learning, who are at risk of growing up deprived of experiencing success. Naturally, they compare themselves to their peers and siblings. While some may see themselves as "different," many will feel inferior. Unfortunately, these feelings are likely to endure. When they do, serious complications can develop including plummeting self- esteem, behavior problems, excessive dependence on peers, alienation from family, deep anxiety, and a loss of motivation. The sad reality is that a difference in learning, not addressed as such, can lead to anti-social behavior, substance abuse, dropping out, and other serious forms of maladjustment.

Loneliness is caused by an alienation from life. It is a loneliness from your real self.

We have to heal our wounded world. The chaos, despair, and senseless destruction we see today are a result of the alienation that people feel from each other and their environment.

The historical experience of socialist countries has sadly demonstrated that collectivism does not do away with alienation but rather increases it, adding to it a lack of basic necessities and economic inefficiency.

If I had influence with the good fairy who is supposed to preside over the christening of all children I should ask that her gift to each child in the world be a sense of wonder so indestructible that it would last throughout life, as an unfailing antidote against the boredom and disenchantments of later years, the sterile preoccupation with things artificial, the alienation from the sources of our strength.

The organization controlling the material equipment of our everyday life is such that what in itself would enable us to construct it richly plunges us instead into a poverty of abundance, making alienation all the more intolerable as each convenience promises liberation and turns out to be only one more burden. We are condemned to slavery to the means of liberation.