Sanity as a GivennMaurice Friedmann: Martin Buber’snLife and Work, Vol. 1, The Early Yearsn1878-1923; E.P. Button; New York.nEllis Sandoz: The Voegelinian Revolution:nA Biographical Introduction;nLouisiana State University Press; BatonnRouge.nby Will Morriseynliducation defines political life morenfolly than brute power does. Admit thatn”Of the gods we believe, and of men wenknow, that by a necessary law of theirnnature they mle wherever they can.” Thenreal questions remain: Which gods?nWhich men? Ruling for what purpose?nThe kind of education they put forth willntell us.nEducation reveals purpose not only innsubject matter and in doctrine but also innthe tension between teacher and student.nIn tyrannies this tension consistsnmostly of fear; in democracies, it oftennconsists of egoism and unplatonic eras;nthe best regime would encourage the lovingntension between a genuine teachernand a genuine student. The possible effectsnof the latter tension can be seen innthese two books by attentive studentsnwhose teachers reward attention.nIn their teaching, Martin Buber andnEric Voegelin embody the principles thatnreproach the false teachings of propagandanand seduction. Buber’s celebratedn”I-Thou” and Voegelin’s similar “metaxy”nboth arise from the experience ofnglad learning and teaching. Both mennoppose the same enemy, too. In Paths innUtopia, Buber observes that the declinenof religion, the traditional frame ofneducation, did not eliminate dreams ofnparadise: “the whole force of dispossessedneschatology was converted intonUtopia at the time of the French revolution,”na Utopia Marxists tried to win bynMr, Morrisey is associate editor o/Interpretation.nS O B ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ HnChronicles of Cttlturenconquest—by means of the “I-It” insteadnof the “I-Thou.” Voegelin condemnsnthe modern attempt to “immantentizenthe eschaton,” to make withnhuman hands paradise in this world.nEducation, religion, politics: each revealsnthe same problem in a different way. Thenproblem of subject and object confrontsnteachers and students, gods and men,nrulers and ruled, would-be conquerorsnand supposed slaves. Buber and Voegelinnwould overcome the problem withoutndestroying the tension.nMaurice Friedmann shows us Buber’snlife and work leading to the publicationnof / and Thou. Although labeled anmystic, Buber was no such thing; Friedmannnshows that Buber never undertooknmysticism’s project, transcending thenworld by uniting with God. Bubernregarded this world as the place to encounternGod. The “I-Thou” means refosingnto regard nature, men, and spiritnas objects to be owned or used (then”I-It”). “I-Thou” means the kind of participationnwith the other that a sentencencannot state but which lovers know. Inndescribing this, Friedmann refases to letnus imagine that Buber’s love partook ofnsentimentality. He quotes Buber’s recollectionnof Lou Salome, the veteran seductressnwho claimed numerous intellectuals:n”Every man fell in love with her, butnI didn’t.” He knew the limits of genuinenlove, too: “even love cannot persist inndirect relation; it endures but only in thenalternation of actuality and latency.”nCuriously, despite his intellectualnpower, Buber mled out the love philosophersnknow. He calls intellect a “parasite”nof namre, contending that reason’snlaw, the law of noncontradiction, requiresnthe separation that makes then”I-It” inevitable. He admits that hennever experienced Plato’s eros for ideas.nIf Buber sounds as much Christian asnJewish, it is because in a way he was.n”From my youth onward,” he wrote, “Inhave found in Jesus my great brother.”nThe “communal immediacy” of earlynnnChristianity superseded the legalism ofnthe Judaism that Jesus encountered.nBuber never flirted with conversion,nhowever, as he considered tme Christianityna revival of tme Judaism, and nevernbelieved Jesus to be divine. To Buber,nthe “I-Thou” of love forms the core ofnboth religions.nLove, intensely private, translates intonthe realities of public life only with difficulty.nBuber had the courage to try tonmake such a transition while engagednnot only in writing but also in politicalnpractice. In / and Thou he does not attemptnto ignore economic and politicalnreality: “Man’s will to profit and will tonpower are namral and legitimate as longnas they are tied to the will to human relationsnand carried by it…. The statesmannor businessman who serves the spirit is nondilettante,” as he tries to define thenlimits of spirit and will “every day anew,naccording to the right and measure ofnthat day.” The theory needs an examplenthat Buber never gives. But Friedmannnsupplies a telling one. After World WarnI, he recounts, Buber resumed the Zionistnactivities that had involved him fornmost of his life. He hoped that PalestiniannJews, practicing the “I-Thou,” couldnlive harmoniously with Palestinian Arabsninstead of “turn[ing] them into swornnenemies.” Friedmann sees this as prophetic,nfor “the situation had not yetnpolarized . . . into Zionism and anti-nZionism.” Given the characteristics ofnIslam, one may doubt that polarity wasnavoidable, Evidently, Buber’s colleaguesnalso had their doubts. At the TwelfthnZionist Congress in 1921, Buber wrote anresolution calling for Arab-Jewish unitynin Palestine. It was amended into innocuousness.nFriedmann quotes his teacher:nMy role as a ‘politician,’ i.e., a mannwho takes part in the political activitynofa group was finished. . . . [H]enceforthnI would not start anythingnwhere I had to choose between thentruth as I saw it and what was actuallynbeing achieved.n