Hermeneutic and Buddhist Meditations
Chapter Seventeen: Smart Ass Cripple
Smart Ass Cripple
W. JOHN WILLIAMSON
What a man [sic] has to learn through suffering is not this or that particular thing, but insight into the limitations of humanity, into the absoluteness of the barrier that separates man from the divine. It is ultimately a religious insight—the kind of insight that gave birth to Greek tragedy. Thus experience is experience of human finitude. The truly experienced person is one who has taken this to heart. (Hans Georg Gadamer, 1989, p. 357)
Words like ‘suffering’ and ‘afflicted with’ are demeaning. People who live with Down syndrome lead fulfilling lives; many people with Down syndrome attend college or university, work and get married. (Canadian Down Syndrome Society, 2013, para 1)
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