The Flight from God
Max Picard. Introduction by Gabriel Marcel.
Chicago: Henry Regnery Company, 1951. Small octavo. Blue cloth boards with the heel of the spine bumped and rubbed. Black marker square on the copyright page. There are a couple of pencil marks in the text block as well as the line "The Giant Mole of Kafka" written in pencil on page 10 and another sentence, also in pencil, scrawled on page 32. Jacket is soiled and discolored with tape in four places on the inside of the jacket, but has no tears. This copy belonged to the historian and author Page Smith and bears his name stamped on the front free end-paper. 185 pages. First edition. Very good.
"In every age man has been in flight from God. What distinguishes the Flight to-day from every other flight is this: once Faith was the universal, and prior to the individual; there was an objective world of Faith, while the Flight was only accomplished subjectively, within the individual man. It came into being through the individual man's separating himself from the world of Faith by an act of decision. A man who wanted to flee had first to make his own flight. The opposite is true to-day. The objective and external world of Faith is no more; it is Faith which has to be remade moment by moment through the individual's act of decision, that is to say, through the individual's cutting himself off from the world of the Flight. For to-day it is no longer Faith which exists as an objective world, but rather the Flight; for every situation into which man comes is from the beginning, without his making it so, plainly a situation of flight, since everything in this world exists only in the form of the Flight."