sellars

haunting sense of alienation

“The ideal aim . . . is to become reflectively at home in the full complexity of the multi-dimensional conceptual system in terms of which we suffer, think, and act. I say ‘reflectively’, because there is a sense in which, by the sheer fact of leading an unexamined, but conventionally satisfying life, we are at home in this complexity. It is not until we have eaten the apple with which the serpent philosopher tempts us that we begin to stumble on the familiar and feel that haunting sense of alienation which is treasured by each new generation as its unique possession. This alienation, this gap between oneself and one’s world, can only be resolved by eating the apple to the core; for after the first bite, there is no return to innocence. There are many anodynes, but only one cure.”

- Wilfred Sellars