The Terror Of History PDF/EPUB ✓ The Terror eBook

6 thoughts on “The Terror Of History

  1. Murtaza Murtaza says:

    Human beings are divided in all types of ways that reuire no restatement here But among the few things that all of us have in common are the certainty of death and the uncertain the trajectory of our own lives In a very intimate way all of human history can be boiled down to a grappling with these basic facts To the extent such things can even be parsed from one another culture religion and politics are battlefields for our inner conflict over these existential crises This book charts out the ways in which humans have responded to their condition spiritual transcendence the pursuit of material pleasure and artistic or intellectual endeavor In all cases the ultimate goal has been or less the same Faced with the all devouring existence of time people have sought an oblivion outside of itMost people respond to the predicament of existence with a mix of the three responses described above A few have memorably gone all in on one or the other which others tend to see as a form of extremism As the title suggests history is one long record of human beings failure to avoid fate Where it is recorded it tends to be a record of suffering whether large or small that serves as a warning to the rest of usAs Sophocles once memorably wrote Not to be born is beyond all estimation best; but when a man has seen the light of day this is next best by far that with utmost speed he should go back from where he came Frees us of all the weight and pain of life That word is loveThis can be interpreted as a morbid statement depending on your perspective but in many ways it should be a reassuring one that happens to be echoed by most religious and spiritual traditions in human history In this book Ruiz talks about his own efforts to grapple with fate His perspective is that of an atheist but a curious and intellectually humble one He is genuinely seeking truth and aware of the limits of his own knowledge a perspective that everyone should share I appreciated his vulnerability and his honesty in grappling with the ultimate uestions It is a refreshing change from those who either robotically ignore them or consider them all somehow settled even though every generation confronts them afreshThroughout the past people sought an end to the painful nature of history by establishing new religious orders seeking extremes of sensual pleasure or material achievement or by creating new political orders that supposedly exist outside of time and its inevitable cycles of growth suffering and decay The most prominent person to raise the prospect of history ending in recent years was Francis Fukuyama Following the Cold War Fukuyama argued that we could be at The End of History His argument suggested that liberalism might finally represent the eternal kingdom of man on earth that we had long sought though his full position was nuanced than most people give him credit for The political pursuit of eternity has led to numerous disasters including the French Revolutionary terror Soviet Communism the US invasion of Ira and uite recently the Islamic State in Ira and Syria Rather than politics physical sensuality and material pursuit seem to be the default mode of transcendence and forgetting for most people in post modernity Significant but dwindling numbers look to religion and spirituality to find truth and a place outside of time while a few great writers and artists seek immortality through their creationsI was expecting of an academic account of these weighty philosophical problems Instead I found an honest and surprisingly personal grappling with the basic predicament of the human condition The books seems to be the distillation of the wisdom of one persons long life which he also teaches as a course on spirituality and history at Princeton His students are uite lucky to take such a course

  2. Daniel Kukwa Daniel Kukwa says:

    Part synthesis of class lectures part personal therapy The Terror of History speaks to a great understanding of why people try to escape from the seemingly crushing inevitability of real life and the wheel of time Some of it I agree with mightily almost as if Ruiz has read my thoughts and other parts I wryly take exception withbut overall this is an extraordinary passionate little text I'm very glad to have run across it; it's given me much to think about especially for the benefit of my own history students

  3. Lambda Moses Lambda Moses says:

    Through both his class and his book I find Teofilo a very expressive person First day of class I was emotionally overwhelmed by his tones And he always sounds very passionate and knowledgeable in his lectures This book's pessimism which is also sometimes betrayed in class indeed struck me emotionally although to be honest I'm an optimist As an optimist I never ever thought of religion pleasure and aesthetics as means of escape but he made his feelings palpable To be honest I'm still not convinced by his pessimistic interpretations of much of the data he presented Yet this book by showing an opposing opinion in such fervor really makes me think to think why I'm the optimist I am Also from this book I might conclude that Teofilo his name belies his devout atheism must be the kind of atheist that I can admire even though I'm a staunch theist as he has spent years thinking through the meaning of existence It seems that he does appreciate the dire conseuences of rejecting the religious schemes of meaning of life rather than simply rejecting religion due to some petty reasons like many New Atheists do

  4. Nenad Nenad says:

    I expected a book steeped in theory and philosophy rather than one filled with personal anecdotes Still there is a good balance between the two and while intimate the book doesn't read as unscholarlyI've found it a deeply pessimistic piece of writing one which doesn't allow for the meaning of human existence And yet oddly enough the book can be seen as an essay on the subject of importance of memory and history writing in order to create meaning It's an intriguing book with some interesting and unexpected insights

  5. Jacqueline Pei Jacqueline Pei says:

    Biased because I was Ruiz's student for a uarter in college last yearGreat book great man He truly gave this book his most candid thoughts of humanity and our struggle to exist as he has observed during his life long education of humanity from reading an incredible amount of literary and cultural masterpieces learning from people in classrooms and on his travels and teaching the history of humanity to bright young minds His refreshing prose is intriguing and comes from a deep place within his soul that has endured the many experiences of life that has shaped what he learned about history Insightful inspirational and humorous Definitely worth a read

  6. Tony Sunderland Tony Sunderland says:

    Mr Ruiz is possibly the greatest teacherauthor of Western history in the past 50 years

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The Terror Of History [EPUB] ✺ The Terror Of History By Teofilo F. Ruiz – This book reflects on Western humanity's efforts to escape from history and its terrors from the existential condition and natural disasters to the endless succession of wars and other man made catast This book reflects on Western humanity's efforts to escape from history and its terrors from the existential condition and natural disasters to the endless succession of wars and other man made catastrophes Drawing on historical episodes ranging from antiuity to the recent past and combining them with literary examples and personal reflections Teofilo Ruiz explores the embrace of religious experiences the pursuit of worldly The Terror eBook ↠ success and pleasures and the uest for beauty and knowledge as three primary responses to the individual and collective nightmares of history The result is a profound meditation on how men and women in Western society sought and still seek to make meaning of the world and its disturbing historyIn chapters that range widely across Western history and culture The Terror Of History takes up religion the material world and the world of art and knowledge Religion and the World to Come examines orthodox and heterodox forms of spirituality apocalyptic movements mysticism supernatural beliefs and many forms of esotericism including magic alchemy astrology and witchcraft The World of Matter and the Senses considers material riches festivals and carnivals sports sex and utopian communities Finally The Lure of Beauty and Knowledge looks at cultural productions of all sorts from art to scholarshipCombining astonishing historical breadth with a personal and accessible narrative style The Terror Of History is a moving testimony to the incredibly diverse ways humans have sought to cope with their frightening history.