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In The Life of the Mind, Georgetown University’s James V. Schall takes up the task of reminding us that, as human beings, we naturally take a special delight and pleasure in simply knowing. Because we have not only bodies but also minds, we are built to know what is. In this volume, Schall, author of On the Unseriousness of Human Affairs (ISI Books), among many other volumes of philosophical and political reflection, discusses the various ways of approaching the delight of thinking and the way that this delight begins in seeing and hearing and even in making and walking. We must be attentive to and cultivate the needs of the mind, argues Schall, for it is through our intellect that all that is not ourselves is finally returned to us, allowing us to live in the light of truth.
'“James Schall [is] one of the finest essayists writing today. . . . A lover of the ‘permanent things,’ always points beyond himself . . . The breadth and depth of [his] reading and study is impressive.” —National Catholic Register“The breadth and depth of Father Schall’s reading and study is impressive, if not intimidating. But his writing is learned without being stuffy . . . There are three appendices: an interview about education and knowledge, a piece on ‘Reading for Clerics,’ and a staple of the lifelong book lover: a book list ‘Twenty books that awaken the mind.’ It comes as a surprise, then, to learn that Father Schall ‘was not much read to or exposed to books’ as a child, and that he didn’t begin a serious reading habit until he entered the Jesuit order at the age of 20. On one level, The Life of the Mind is a sort of intellectual memoir, a warm invitation to walk alongside a holy priest and wise professor. On another, it is a firm and clear-eyed challenge to think—and to think well—about the great questions: Who am I? Who is God? What is reality? What is good?” —Carl E. Olson, editor of IgnatiusInsight.com“This is a delightful book—a delight for the mind . . . He loves wisdom and seeks it whenever it can be found. This love of wisdom and reality shines through each of the short essays in this little book.” —Kenneth Baker, S.J., Homiletic & Pastoral Review“The Life of the Mind . . . continues this project by bringing together pieces that have appeared over the years in numerous publications, including the Saint Austin Review, Homiletic and Pastoral Review and the National Review. Longtime Schall fans will be pleased to find him in top form . . . and new readers will find a delightfully diverse sampling of the Jesuit’s reflections.” —Brent Kallmer, Catholic News Service'
Publisher: Intercollegiate Studies Institute