Sunday, April 28, 2013

Quote of the Day (Reinhold Niebuhr, on ‘Glimpses of Ultimate Perfection Within Imperfection’)

“When the storms and fevers of this era are passed, and modern civilization has achieved a social system which provides some basic justice compatible with the necessities of a technical age, the perennial problems of humanity will emerge once more. Religious insights which seem inimical to moral progress and moral vigor will come into their own again. There will be unjust men in this new society of justice; and good men will feel that they are not as just as they ought to be. The perils of nature and the inhumanities of man will continue to take their toll in human life.…

“Then men will see again the importance of accommodating the vision of perfection to an imperfect world, without losing the urge to perfect the world. In order to do this, they must find suggestions of meaning in chaos and glimpses of ultimate perfection within imperfection.”-- Reinhold Niebuhr (1892-1971), “The Assurance of Grace,” in The Essential Reinhold Niebuhr:  Selected Essays and Addresses, edited by Robert MacAfee Brown (1986)

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