The Teachings of
Struggle for a Meaningful Existence
Inner and Outer Life
- July 11 · 6:30 PM
- Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, East Liberty
2nd Floor Meeting Room
130 Whitfield Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15206
Many indications, which impartial observation can soon transform into conviction, lead us to feel that there are two natures in us. One of them is personal or individual, is relatively accessible to our usual means of perception, and is both organic and psychic (or animal and animated). The other, much less easy to perceive, is experienced as our participation in something far greater than the individual. Thus we call it spiritual, even universal; and, in fact, we hardly know how to speak about it. The attention paid to it varies a great deal from person to person and at different moments of life: almost everybody, however, will recognize that, at least at certain moments, he has felt, alongside an egocentric, selfish tendency, this need for something infinite or “absolute.”
From the moment a man turns toward himself like this, questions himself, and struggles to understand both what he is and what he could be, it becomes clear that he can turn in either of two ways and have two kinds of so-called “activities,” two kinds of life going in different directions. One is entirely oriented toward the outside . . . The other way to turn, the other kind of “activity,” concerns the inner life: it is centered above all on the “realization” of the latent possibilities contained within the individual. . . if a man wants to be fully himself one day, the re-establishment of the lost balance between his two natures and his two ways of living is certainly the first work which is necessary.
-- Jean Vaysse, "Toward Awakening"