Monday, February 10, 2003


Talking about friends can make them your enemies.

What do I mean by that? What I mean is that by referring to someone as a "he" or a "she", one is also putting them in the same class as "it". This, of course, is not an original idea...Martin Buber talked about it half a century ago, and people have probably known, or at least sensed it... for millennia.

Friendships, and indeed love and family relationships are based on an I-you, rather than an I-It relationship...and is always in danger of becoming one. I-Its can also become I-Yous as well, and thank God!

So when talking about might take special care to try to remember their "you-ness".

But how does this this jibe with the world scene? Mightn't Jews and Arabs, Christians and Muslims, Irish and English, and so on...find each other's youness as well?

War, in fact, seems predicated upon turning the "other" into an absolute "other"...much in the way Foucault describes.
But only Its can be others. Each within an I-You is complete, without bounds or otherness.


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