On the Failure to Hope for Mental Healing
Pieper on Hope
As should be abundantly clear now from my Plough article on OCD, On Getting Out of Bed came out of a place of personal suffering and wrestling with my faith and mental health. The central problem I tried to address in this book was, How do we keep going when life feels unbearable?
The answer, of course, is hope. Hope, as I’ve been learning in studying Josef Pieper’s work, is a virtue. As such it is a good that makes ennobles us and brings us closer to our created reality. In other words, humans were designed to be creatures of hope, but the Fall pulls us toward hopelessness. Pieper argues in Faith, Hope, Love that there are two kinds of hopelessness. The first is despair, the second is “presumption,” or false hope: “a perverse anticipation of the fulfillment of hope” (113).
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