February Book Club - Wendell Berry's Life is a Miracle: An Essay Against Modern Superstition
For February, we will discuss Berry's response to the E.O. Wilson book we read in January!
UPDATED 01/15/14: Please note change of location.
For the February Book Club meeting on Monday, February 10th, we will gather to discuss Wendell Berry’s Life Is A Miracle: An Essay Against Modern Superstition.
As a poet, novelist, and farmer, Wendell Berry has worked and written in favor of tried and tested ways, rejecting the notion that the modern is always to be preferred over the old. Technology may have its uses, he has insisted in books like The Gift of Good Land, but what matters more is the crafting of sound human communities and of self-reliant living. Religious faith lies at the heart of Berry's unapologetically old-fashioned program. Faith, which supposes that life is full of unpredictable mysteries, stands against much of modern science, an opposition that Berry explores in Life Is a Miracle. Taking particular issue with entomologist E.O. Wilson's recent book, Consilience, which maintains the supremacy of scientific explanation over religious conjecture and supposes that science will one day be able to answer every question about the hows and whys of life, Berry revisits C.P. Snow's "two cultures" thesis to observe that science and religion address different kinds of necessary questions. "Science cannot replace art or religion," he writes, "for the same reason that you cannot loosen a nut with a saw or cut a board in two with a wrench." Against science's "false specification and pretentious exactitude," Berry notes quietly that the more he observes his own little corner of the planet, a small Kentucky farm, the less patient he is with reductionist, materialist explanations of the way things work--for here, and everywhere, "life ... is unique, given to the world minute by minute, only once, never to be repeated."
Date: February 10, 2014
Time: 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Place: Harter Home, Del Mar (address will be distributed to confirmed RSVPs)
All dues-paying HCSD members and their guests are welcome. If you plan to attend, please RSVP to Loreen Collins at firstname.lastname@example.org.