"This reality which Proust expresses, beyond both symbol and surface, Weil takes as the supernatural. Or perhaps it is more accurate to say that Weil takes our reading supreme reality through the movements of the material world as a supernatural act. Weil writes in The Need for Roots, “The operations of the intellect in scientific study makes sovereign necessity over matter appear to the mind as a network of relations which are immaterial and without force. Necessity can only be perfectly conceived so long as relations appear as absolutely immaterial.” A dense couple of sentences, but illustrative of Weil’s contrast of the limited and unlimited. Picking up shades of contemporary object-oriented ontology (but actually hearkening back to Greek conceptions of how humans read the natural world), Weil is saying that brute matter is not itself able to be penetrated by thought. Thought, being immaterial, understands in ratios and proportions. And so it is through this immaterial thought that the brute and unlimited chaos of the material world becomes ordered cosmos. The better we think, or read, the limits of nature and the unifying associations between phenomena, the more our own minds cohere with the immaterial mind of the Creator."
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