"is it wrong?" Yes.

"The perfect life," as I noted, is a common concept in Christian mysticism. Eliot read Evelyn Underhill early and also read many mystics. All this takes is a little reading in what he read.

I'm sure you do find it wrong.
Nancy

On Wed, Jul 13, 2016 at 10:19 PM, Ken Armstrong <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
On 7/13/2016 6:15 PM, Nancy Gish wrote:
Eliot never claimed the he, himself, achieved it--only that he admired it.

     "It" here is "perfection"? It seems to be Gordon who is the serious user of the words "perfect" and "imperfect."  My impression is that they designate her own judgement on Eliot. Is that wrong? I'm frankly surprised my inquiry caused such a stir. Does one need vindication for asking a question? Wouldn't all like to know how or whether "perfect" and "imperfect" in their various forms are used in Eliot's writing? Seems a natural enough question when the word is being leaned on so heavily by a well known critic.

Reread Gordon.  And his poems are not theological pronouncements anyway. Quoting them is not a refutation or a lifetime of biographical study.

     Though writing them very well might be. And when you say his poems are not theological pronouncements, I presume you mean you don't read them that way. Perhaps what's needed is a good reading by someone who does,culminating, especially, with 4Q. As always, I find it odd that the poetry seems to register as so much less constitutive of itself than the biography, though no one would be bothering whatsoever with any biography were not the poems the distinctive, remarkable creations that they are. Very odd. I would think in principle, at least, that it would not be so difficult to agree on that point.

Ken A