Spengler: about Cosmic Anguish and the Religious Sentiment of the World

“Among the primordial sentiments, the cosmic anguish is certainly the most creative. To it man owes the most profound forms and figures, matured not only from its conscious inner life, but also from the repercussions of it in the innumerable works of the external culture. Like a secret melody not perceptible by everyone, the anguish becomes known through the language of the forms of every true work of art, of every deep philosophy, of every significant action”.

“In every work that expresses the whole man, the whole sense of existence, anguish and desire, despite being intertwined, remain distinct”.

“All the living forms in which the soul expresses itself, all the arts, the theories, the customs, all the mathematical and metaphysical worlds of the forms, every ornamentation, every column, every verse, every idea is, deep inside, religious and can only be religious. But now it can no longer be such. The essence of every culture is religion, therefore the essence of every civilization is irreligion”.

“At the beginning of history there is a deep religious sense of the world, there are sudden illuminations, shivers of anguish in front of the awake being toward which we proceeded, there are dreams and metaphysical desires: at the end of it there is an intellectual clarity so exasperated to be painful”.

“That the birth of the Self and that of the cosmic anguish are one, is one of the fundamental mysteries of humanity and, in general, of the life capable of free movement”.

-Oswald Spengler

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4 thoughts on “Spengler: about Cosmic Anguish and the Religious Sentiment of the World

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