The Varieties of Religious Experience Essay

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The key to understanding what James meant by the sick soul has two aspects: first, the idea is intimately related to his distinction between the "once-born" and the "twice-born," and, second, the predicament of the sick soul stands in marked contrast to what James called "the religion of healthy-mindedness." The onceborn dwell on the cheer, the goodness, the light, the beneficence, and the kindness in the world and envisage no obstacles that cannot be overcome by holding fast to the attitude of optimism. The twiceborn are acutely aware of the darker aspects of the universe, the evil it contains, and the human propensities that contribute to sorrow, suffering, sin, and corruption; they, moreover, find no resolution for this situation either in the denial of the reality of these facts or in the belief that they can be overcome by human resources alone. The sick soul obviously falls within...

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This section contains 2,598 words
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