Born in Avignon on Christmas Day 1923, philosopher René Girard is the author of works that are published in more than two dozen languages, including The Scapegoat and Things Hidden Since the Foundation of the World. His latest book, Achever Clausewitz, will be published in the United States in 2010 as Battling to the End: Politics, War, and Apocalypse. In 2005, Professor Girard received the highest honor in France, induction as one of the forty members of the Academie Francaise.
First describing the triangular structure of desire -- object, model, and subject -- Girard tells how conflicts are resolved and why human society is not marked by total conflict all the time. He further speaks of the intersection of the universal themes of mythology and Christianity and Christianity's future.
"History...is a test of mankind," says René Girard, and "mankind is failing that test."
René Girard (born December 25, 1923, Avignon, France) is a French historian, literary critic, and philosopher of social science. His work belongs to the tradition of anthropological philosophy. He is the author of several books in which he developed the ideas of mimetic desire and the scapegoat mechanism, and how they relate to the Bible.
René Girard's writings cover many areas. Although the reception of his work is different in each of these areas, there is a growing body of secondary literature that uses his hypotheses and ideas in the areas of literary criticism, critical theory, anthropology, theology, psychology, mythology, sociology, economics, cultural studies, and philosophy.
He is Andrew B. Hammond Professor of French Language, Literature & Civilization & Professor of Comparative Literature, Emeritus at Stanford University.
Peter M. Robinson is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution, where he writes about business and politics, edits the Hoover Institution's quarterly journal, the Hoover Digest, and hosts Hoover's television program, "Uncommon Knowledge."
Robinson is also the author of three books: How Ronald Reagan Changed My Life; It's My Party: A Republican's Messy Love Affair with the GOP; and the best-selling business book Snapshots from Hell: The Making of an MBA.
In the Old Testament, a goat that was symbolically burdened with the sins of the people and then killed on Yom Kippur to rid Jerusalem of its iniquities. Similar rituals were held elsewhere in the ancient world to transfer guilt or blame. In ancient Greece, human scapegoats were beaten and driven out of cities to mitigate calamities. In early Roman law, an innocent person was allowed to assume the penalty of another; Christianity reflects this notion in its belief that Jesus died to atone for the sins of mankind.
I don't see how mimicry is a "fraudulent defense mechanism." Defending against what? Originality? It's a great defense mechanism if anything. After birth, you mimic others in order to walk, communicate, etc. If you want to be good at a sport for example, you would mimic one who is considered great at it. What are you defending against is what I am really not understanding. What's wrong with mimicry?
Greetings... Urantia? Yes interesting, but the Urantia (1930's) information about our solar system is far from accurate and brings into question credibility of the author. Check into what is said about life on Venus and Mars. We now know Venus to be most inhospitable to any form of life we are familiar with, Urantia claims otherwise. Regards
You might well be interested in my favorite book, "The Urantia Book" as it explains this universalist foundation Jesus was exampling through his life and his teachings that did not seem to make it into the historic writings this planet has come to know and dogmatize. Your hunch is accurate I believe, you are on to something true. Most religious persons are not deep thinkers, they accept too much unverified tradition and in many cases they accept the superstitions of old that go along with these past traditions.
The sacrifice or atonement of the "Christ" dying on the cross,
forgiving the sins of the masses is much like the ritual of Yom Kippur.
Yom Kippur, an older atonement act where the priest casts the sins
of the masses upon a goat which is then set free to meet its end in the
wilderness. Is one narrative any more rational then the other?
Wow, that confused me in an exciting way. I'll have to watch it again. It definitely doesn't seem to fit with my Alan Watts/Ken Wilber-style understanding of religion.
I wish I knew someone who knew Buddhism through-and-through but strongly felt that Christianity is still the only one true religion.
Being as honest-hearted/minded a person as I can, Christianity's claim to superiority is one of the hardest things for me to open myself up to because 1) the 'universalist' kind of understanding of these religions, to me, has held the most depth and true understanding and power and meaning and 2) it just feels right to me, because it would require all religions/denominations to bring down their walls in the spirit of "a church divided is no church at all". In the spirit of "I saw no temple in the city (the New Jerusalem)", when we no longer need the bridge of religion because we've finally crossed to the other bank...when we've seen through to the one Single light that shines through all of our religions to create different images that still share a common source...Anyway.
As I end all of my messages like this...If you think you could help improve my understanding, please send a friend invite and message to help this seeker along his way. Thanks! : )