By J. Michelle Molina
To beat Oneself deals a singular retelling of the emergence of the Western thought of “modern self,” demonstrating how the fight to forge a self used to be enmeshed in early glossy Catholic missionary enlargement. analyzing the practices of Catholics in Europe and New Spain from the 1520s throughout the 1760s, the publication treats Jesuit strategies of self-formation, specifically non secular routines and confessional practices, and the relationships among non secular administrators and their topics. Catholics on each side of the Atlantic have been folded right into a dynamic that formed new innovations of self and, within the method, fueled the worldwide Catholic missionary circulate. Molina historicizes Jesuit meditation and narrative self-reflection as modes of self-formation that may eventually give a contribution to a brand new figuring out of faith as whatever deepest and private, thereby overturning long-held innovations of personhood, time, house, and social fact. to beat Oneself demonstrates that it used to be via embodied tactics that people have come to adventure themselves as cut up into brain and physique. though the self-congratulatory function assigned to “consciousness” within the Western highbrow culture, early moderns didn't imagine themselves into pondering selves. quite, “the self” used to be cast from embodied efforts to go beyond self. but regardless of a discourse that situates self as inside, the particular gas for persevered self-transformation required an object-cum-subject—someone else to remodel. consistent questions in the course of the booklet are: Why does the trouble to grasp and go beyond self require such a lot of others? And what do we know about the inherent intersubjectivity of missionary colonialism?
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Additional info for To Overcome Oneself: The Jesuit Ethic and Spirit of Global Expansion, 1520–1767
In the century that preceded the formation of the Jesuits, the lines between contemplation and worldly action became increasingly blurred. Yet in comparing the Society of Jesus with the mendicant orders, we must bear in mind that it was the conventual life of the friars that made worldly activity possible. ”14 To compare Franciscans with the more hermetic monastic lifestyle that preceded them, we can rely upon Elizabeth Rapley’s very succinct and helpful description of the primary aims that differentiated monastics and mendicants: “Monasteries, as expressions of the aspirations of the medieval world, had been built on the principle of flight from the world; friaries, responding to the changing spirit of the high Middle Ages, were built within the world, but also served as sanctuaries to which their members could withdraw, though temporarily, from its entanglements.
In this chapter I suggest that our notions of “colonial difference” ought also to take into consideration spiritual status because Christian practices were important factors in assessing ethno-socio status (calidad) in an increasingly heterogeneous colonial society. Among all the examples in this book, the anguished struggles of these two nuns allow us to examine at close range the labor of submitting to a regimen of Ignatian spirituality. These nuns’ writings were paradigmatic of the way that early modern Jesuit spirituality inhabited the interstices between what Foucault described as a “rupture” between moral-theological versus psychoanalytical techniques of self.
He desired a life of greater mobility on the northern Mexican frontiers and, importantly, within reach of the martyr’s death. In this chapter I suggest that our notions of “colonial difference” ought also to take into consideration spiritual status because Christian practices were important factors in assessing ethno-socio status (calidad) in an increasingly heterogeneous colonial society. Among all the examples in this book, the anguished struggles of these two nuns allow us to examine at close range the labor of submitting to a regimen of Ignatian spirituality.