Pathos is the art of speech aimed at evoking the emotions of our audience. Inflections in the voice, subtleties of facial expressions and dramatic strokes of hand and body. The constructed meaning of words informs the mind, pathos milks the sentiments. Leaving behind an experience and not a binary exchange of data.
Passion is the source from which poetry and pathos come. Legitimate poetry and pathos. Once a switch has been flipped inside a man, poetry and pathos are not excessive but necessary. Once passion’s fire begins to spread from belly to lips and pen, pathos and poetry are as natural as sweat on a labourer.
Our generation is not marked by a pursuit of truth and therefore it is not passionate. We seek sense experiences. Comfort, sex, sports and leisure. We want entertainment to impart passion to our lives. Yet only the pursuit of truth can trigger true passion. From this ignition comes the inevitable drama of good vs. evil which provides us with the entertainment we seek. If we don’t have this drama we watch it on television. We need it. But we have not the tools to achieve it because we have been educated into believing there is no truth. At least no truth so Ultimate and Final that any real and risky journey towards it is worth our while. Our world is flat.
This is not how the Greeks shaped the “golden” culture which still resonates today. This is not how the Western european concept of the University birthed the most systematically successful learning institution known to man. The pursuit of Truth conditions the mind, body and spirit into the keen, sensitive whole that can then be entertained. The disbelief in the existence of Truth dulls first the individual and then the society into a vegetable state.
Once a man — or a woman — begins to taste and pursue truth, they begin to live. Their individual parts — mind, body, soul — are introduced to one another and begin roaring as a unified engine. Things happen. Life. Culture. Sanctification. The prophets are born. Not in the Old Testament style of direct wireless connection between man and God, but in the sense of being defined by the belief in, the pursuit of and the relishing in Truth.
And what if Truth is a Person? Should we be surprised? Rocks do not dream and chimps do not weep. The human mind is isolated in the ecosphere in its awareness of Truth. Man is the paint on a canvas which has a Self-Portrait. Man is not the Painter, but he is in His likeness.
That we would wake up and live!
“Let Us make man in our likeness”
“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
– Jesus Christ