Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2002

Abstract

We should have a text to help us-lawyers and theologians almost always do. Consider this from Wordsworth, and ask whether it goes too far if Wordsworth were thought to be speaking to the practicing lawyer: Here you stand, Adore, and worship, when you know it not; Pious beyond the intention of your thought; Devout above the meaning of your will. -Yes, you have felt, and may not cease to feel. The estate of Man would be indeed forlorn If false conclusions of the reasoning Power Made the Eye blind, and closed the passages Through which the Ear converses with the heart.1 This is a wonderful passage in Wordsworth's long Excursion, said to be the only wonderful passage in what Wordsworth considered his great work. It captures the question we are addressing t.oday. Whether it gives too strong an answer, with its references to worship, piety, and the devout, depends on what piety leans to-ward and what worship is of. On this, Wordsworth himself is nicely enigmatic. But in staying so he does not close us off from the possibility of touching something unive:i:sal in exploring the connections between law. in the world and theology in the world.


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