❮ Eugen Rosenstock-Huessy Live!

Volume 26: Economy Of Times (1965)

Five 1-hour lectures.

All modern philosophy does is to omit one little thing: sacrifice… The economy of our creation is a very difficult one, because it demands from you and me —as a first admission—that we are the victims in the process. God’s world cannot stand without sacrifice. 

—November 16, 1965

Reviewing this lecture series, Richard Feringer wrote that it was both the most compre­ hensive and most concise expression by Rosenstock-Huessy on time and its basic meaning to society, as opposed to the meaning of time to the natural sciences.

“Economy” has two meanings; before 1800, it meant that from the house of God, “plenty” was created out of the wilderness. After 1800, after Adam Smith and Karl Marx, it came to mean simply the production of goods and services, buying and selling.

The old meaning acknowledged that sacrifice was a necessary part of becoming a human being, that we must be convinced we are not wild animals and were within the House of God and so obligated to maintain an orderly house. The new meaning implied the possibility of avoiding sacrifice omitted any acknowledgement of community strictures.

These lectures explore the two different meanings of economy and suggest a way to re-integrate them for improved outcomes in the future.