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The Dehumanized Humanist


When touring an exhibit at the New York Public Library, “Shelley’s Ghost: The Afterlife of a Poet” (contains occasional profanity), English professor Paula Marantz Cohen couldn't help but be reminded that Percy Shelley, the famous Romantic-era poet, was an odious scoundrel (as were his friends).

Shelley was an ardent atheist and despite being wealthy, prattled about the abolition of wealth and class. Shelley lived a lot of his life according to his worldview, except, of course, he didn't renounce his own wealth or status. Literally and figuratively, Shelley wrought bloody havoc in the lives of people around him, especially the teenage young women for whom he had predilection.

I wonder if people like Darwin, Marx, and Nietzsche imbibed Shelley's de-humanizing ideas. Cohen reflect that Shelley's work about John Keats's death illustrates his own "ignoble self."

If you haven't gotten to it yet, please listen to (or read) John Stonestreet's BreakPoint Radio commentary today, "The Real Humanism." He talks about how the Gospel is the only way toward "re-humanizing" culture.

Comments:

It seems to me that the only way to "humanize" ourselves is to pay close attention to the One Who was the MOST HUMAN. The fact that Shelley was an athiest makes him near the top of the list for brute animals. So many in our culture today are "brute animals", and I pray daily that God will somehow open their eyes to see His Truth! It's the only chance any of us has.
Black sheep
We all have our family embarrassments. I understand he was in my mother's lineage generations ago. What an irony; his wife Mary wrote Frankenstein and Percy lived out much of the part.