Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The Final Chapter?

At 3:34 this afternoon, I saved a completed draft of the fifth and final chapter of my dissertation. I semi-knew yesterday that I was nearing the end: the argument I was making just felt right and it all seemed to hang together. So, I woke up early this morning and edited pages 1-50 between 6:00 am and noon. I do this pretty regularly, usually after each section, so I can re-tool the beginning to reflect what I've done on the way. After six hours of work, I ate lunch and returned to my computer at 12:30. In a flurry of writing, I managed to tie up a number of loose ends and managed to knock out a pretty decent transition to the Conclusion (to be written in January).

I moved to Cleveland on May 24th, began writing on July 15th, and today is December 12th. In less than seven months I produced around 325 pages to be read by my advisor and probably another 60 pages in the "deleted from chapter X" files. Not every day has been a triumph, but I have never gone to bed with a sense of foreboding or unhappiness. I have enjoyed this process and feel confirmed in my calling to the academic life.

My hope now: to start translating some of the heavy-lifting I've been doing in metaphysics to material helpful to a general audience. Not everyone will want to read of metaxology (Gasp!) but I suspect people would welcome works exploring how one can pray in a secular age, how one can undertake spiritual practices aimed at re-awakening questions of transcendence, and how theology and philosophy can be mutually informative. Well, the last one would not be to all tastes!

Just thought I'd share this bit of news. There's a lot more work to do: revisions, Intro/Conclusion, Defense, etc. But I feel as though I've argued a point and made a good case for my project, so tonight I shall sleep easy.

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