Man is by nature a cell-phone-speaking animal


I have always liked the fact that we are not the primary objects of our own intellects. We are said to be the lowest of the intellectual beings in the universe. We do not know by knowing ourselves. We know ourselves by knowing first what is not ourselves. While knowing what is not ourselves, we become alive, active. We reflect that it is my very self that knows. I become alive to myself through the gift of what is not myself. Again this suggests that things fit together. They serve one another even by being what they are. Aristotle pointed out that a medical doctor has a very precise purpose that limits what he does. If things could not go wrong with the physical side of man, we would not need doctors. They are called in when things do not function properly. The doctor does not, however, cure us. Nature cures us. The doctor removes or adds to what is preventing our bodies from curing themselves. The doctor is not qua doctor concerned with the good life. He is concerned with life, health. His activities are properly directed to restoring a particular patient to health. When this is accomplished, the relationship of doctor and patient ceases.

more from James V. Schall, S.J. at First Principles here.