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Hughes’ final chapter, “Mystery and Mythos,” provides “a systematic summary of Voegelin’s analysis of the central mysteries of every human existence and of what is involved in recognizing and embracing them.” (89) Hughes analyzes four mysteries that are specified in Voegelin’s writings: the mystery of origins, the mystery of personal meaning, the mystery of history, and the mystery of the relationship between individual destiny and universal history. His summary accounts of these decisively important problems (90-96) is the clearest available in the literature on Voegelin—clearer, indeed, than many of Voegelin’s parallel formulations, and considerably more accessible by dint of a deft intertwining of Voegelin’s technical terms with more common philosophical language. These summaries are not, however, the conclusion of Hughes’ analysis. He observes that these mysteries raise further questions regarding how humans are to orient and attune themselves to a radically transcendent and ultimately mysterious ground of being, and, of equal importance, how they are to find meaning and fulfillment in the immanent realm of worldly existence from which the ground is differentiated. As Hughes casts the issue,

"When the differentiating insights separate the perfection of the ground from the physical universe, a shadow falls over the struggle for personal and social fulfillment, insofar as perfect attunement or reconciliation with what is most lasting in reality can no longer reasonably be conceived as possible under worldly conditions."

Commentaries on the Work of Eric Voegelin -

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