Young Woon Ko


Non-Directionality and Creativity:

A Critical Approach to Girard’s Theory of Mimetic Desire  


This article critically examines the directional nature of economy, violence, and war based on Rene Girard’s theory of mimetic desire.  I will discuss the issue of “directionality” shown in Girard’s theory and indicate the problem of mimetic desire in relation to human directional nature.   Positing mimetic desire as a common source of violence, war, and economic choices, Girard presents the problem of individuals’ engaging in imitation proceeding to the “sameness,” which is attained by victimizing its opposites, i.e., a scapegoat.   This proceeding often appears as a mass movement in which a group or nation is directed to a certain goal.   In this sense Girard’s theory of mimetic desires is a critic of directionality in human nature. 

Seeking to overcome social problems caused by economics, violence, and war, Girard also relies on his theory of mimetic desire.   Girard presents Jesus’ love and mercy as a model that human beings need to desire.  In other words, Girard proposes another level of desires in which we are directed to love and non-violence as nurtured by the Christian tradition.   Critically reviewing Girard’s presentation for a new dimension of mimetic desires for good, I will argue that non-directional harmony and order, rather than another level of mimetic desires, i.e., directionality, comprises a solution to violence, war, and economic desires.  In support of my claim of a non-directional way, I will focus on the issue of interreligious dialogue and non-directional harmony among religions to overcome religious conflicts and violence caused by our directedness to our own religious traditions.  For a philosophical foundation of non-directional order, I propose Whitehead’s concept of creativity as the multilateral relation between the one and the many by exploring “a complex unity” embracing the opposites (i.e., the many), which are neither directed nor reduced into the sameness.        


    Directionality in Girard’s Theory of Mimetic Desire


Girard conceives of mimetic desires as the essential nature of human beings.  One’s desire for some things is shaped by one’s mimetic relation to others.  Such a relation is developed within a web filled with desires.   We imitate others—through thoughts, plans, characteristics, behaviors, movements, and so forth.   This mimetic nature is “directional”; it is directed to a model that one imitates in order to obtain something.   According to Girard, this process of imitation is prevalent in our society, shaping a competitive circumstance.   This situation of rivalry in a competitive society originates in mimetic; Directed to the same object, we imitate others.  

The essential nature of mimetic desires is “directionality;” people are directed to the same custom, value, or goal.  In a patriarchal society, individuals are directed to the male-centered tradition by consciously or unconsciously affirming men’s superiority.    Roman citizens were directed to the “pietas” based on the hierarchical system in which one expressed “reverential fear” to one’s family, the family expressed it to the society, the society to the state, and the state to its gods and goddesses.  During the Dark Ages, medieval Christians were directed to the society governed by the papal authority.  Given these directional situations, people imitate one another in their practice of socio-religious values and customs. 

The basic development of capitalistic economy is also a function of our mimetic desires.  According to Andrew McKenna,


Economic competition is also ruled by mimetic desire, which is not ruled, governed, or mastered in any way by  

a value emanating from the object, the commodity, but controlled only by another desire.  The advertising

industry exploits this fact when it regularly focuses less on the object of consumption than on the image, that is,

the imitation, of the self-possessed consumers.[i]


The consumers’ environments stimulate their mimetic instincts.    Their commercial activities are often performed by imitating others rather than according to their voluntary need or purpose.  Although human need is more basic than human greed, even needs are developed by means of mimetic desires that the advertising industry constantly inflames.  In other words, one’s commercial activity instigates others’ mimetic instincts, and the advertising industry takes advantage of the situation.     

This mimetic consumption also comprises an economic circumstance of contemporary society, whereby the activities of consumption are contagious.  The value of a commercial item is often determined by the degree of imitation.  The more mimetic desire the consumer has for an item, the more economic value it accrues.  That is to say, the economic value of an item is often determined by its popularity, which is a reflection of the high degree of mimetic desire that it draws.

The correlation between economic value and mimetic desires is an issue of directionality.  The advertising industry creates a directionality in which consumers’ psychic mode is driven toward the item produced.  This directional drive heightens economic value through the consumers’ mimetic desires.     

Beyond the issue of economic development, mimetic desires proceed to forming the identity or homogeneity of a person, a group, or a nation.   Girard interprets the crucifixion of Jesus in terms of a mimetic desire for maintaining the identity of a Jewish group.  The crucifixion resulted from victimizing a difference to maintain a group’s sameness, i.e., identity.  Mimetic desires underlie the forming of homogeneity.[ii]   A mimetic desire is contagious, whereby two or more people imitate a certain model.   Girard calls this development of mimetic desires “mimetic doubles.”[iii]  In other words, mimetic desires are epidemic and thereby pose a threat to society by creating a scapegoat.    

The collective power of evil is developed in the process of forming a group identity.  Although one may be involved in a certain group that has a good purpose, one often tends to uncritically follow the group’s direction by way of mimetic doubles, expressing hostility toward rivals.  The collective power of evil appears as a form of violence.   Girard says, “Violence is the enslavement of a pervasive lie; it imposes upon men a falsified vision not only of God but also of everything else.”[iv]  The “falsified vision” involves the selective activity based on mimetic desires.  In other words, the falsified vision is associated with the focal activity excluding the fringe.  Mimetic doubles cause the situation of mass movements for the group identity, whereby the fringe or periphery is easily ignored or antagonized by the group’s focal activity.  

Therefore, the problem with our mimetic desires is the fact that our focal activity, through our selective process, often excludes its fringe.  According to Girard, our nature of imitation precedes our rational judgment as conscious activity.   Logical reasoning performed within our conscious awareness is preceded by mimetic desires rooted in our subconscious.[v]   The falsified vision is established by mimetic desires that cause the extreme situation of competition or rivalry, which ultimately brings about the collective potential for evil.        

For example, Girard explains Jesus’ crucifixion in terms of mimetic desires.  Crucifying Jesus resulted from a mass movement for finding a scapegoat.[vi]  Such a movement is inflamed by one’s imitation for pre-established value and ideology, whereby more and more people join in the movement to victimize the other.  This process of mass movement becomes the source of collective evil.  

From the perspective of Girard, war is a good example of collective violence contributing to the formation of self-identity.  War is a form of mimetic desire that causes a mass movement to form a people’s group identity at the sacrifice of the opponents, that is, by creating a scapegoat.   Girard argues that the scapegoating process works unconsciously in supporting a group’s direction, justifying the process on a theological basis.  Thus, “the sacrificial process requires a certain degree of misunderstanding. . . . It is the god who supposedly demands the victims; he alone, in principle, who savors the smoke from the altars and requisitions the slaughtered flesh.”[vii]  Scapegoating is not a phenomenon that arises from reasonable judgment.  While we may offer our own reasons for our scapegoating, the process is nevertheless deeply rooted in our proclivity to form mimetic desires—desires which often operate on a subconscious level and are often acted on due to our own misunderstanding or misjudgment of divine order and revelation.

In one sense, war results from mass movements for good that each opponent believes in; yet the mass movements resulting from a people’s mimetic desires bring evil or disasters into our human society.  In other words, war may be viewed as the struggle between good and evil, but it is nothing other than collective violence based on mimetic desires.  Identifying one’s side as good and the other as evil becomes an occasion to promote the expression of mimetic desires and to create collective violence through the scapegoating process.  Girard asserts that:


  texts of persecution range from the documents of medieval and modern anti-Semitism, including violent pogroms, to the         

  records of the Spanish Inquisition and the trials of witches down to the primarily oral text of modern racism, the lynching of    

  blacks, for instance, in the American South.[viii]


The common points of these disasters are the scapegoating process caused by the privileged group’s mimetic desires and mass movements.   

Collective violence plays a role in establishing order through creating a scapegoat.   According to Girard, the scapegoating process is a step toward peace.   Peace and war are cyclically developed as the collective violence and scapegoating process evolves.   “Violence against the victim is consummated, peace returns; order is generated.”[ix]   The situation of violence is magically changed to peaceful order by the completion of the scapegoating process.[x]


This collective violence turns to peace by ending with a bloody differentiation, and the human society   

constantly repeats this cyclical pattern of war and peace through mimetic desires.  The return of peace must  

produce something like the experience of a miracle because violent discord is transformed almost magically

into peaceful harmony.[xi]  


Mimetic desires lie behind the phenomena of the collective violence and peace.  While we make collective violence by imitating others, we also make a peace by imitating others.  This mimetic process surrounds our life, whereby we are directed to collective behaviors and produce the scapegoat to keep our group identity. 

According to Girard, violence is a major mythological; theme.  The sacrifice of animals, first-born offspring, or a certain group of people is a typical theme of many mythical stories.  At this point Girard identifies a crucial difference between the Bible and other mythologies.   Whereas the Bible reveals the truth of violence, many other mythical stories conceal the truth of violence.[xii]  For example, whereas sacrificing first-born offspring was a custom that contributed to mythological content in the Near East, the story of Abraham’s sacrificing Isaac shows how such violence is finally rejected by God.   In the stories of Jesus, Paul and several other apostles, the New Testament, instead of justifying violence as do many other myths, reveals how violence becomes the component of evil.  “The Gospel reveals ‘things hidden since the foundation of the world.’”[xiii]      

In Girard’s view of violence and war, the essential nature of mimetic desires is “directional.”  Girard suggests that the problem of war and violence in human nature directed to a certain object also seeks a solution by proposing another way of directedness. Given this explanation, a critical issue raised from Girard’s theory of mimetic desires is “directedness.”  Our mimetic nature is directional. 

Girard derives both problems and solutions from the concept of the directional aspect of mimetic desires.  Violence and war are caused by mass movements developed in a certain direction.  One’s imitating others involves directing oneself toward their attitudes.  In this sense the essential component of mimetic desires is directedness in which the difference becomes sameness.  This process indicates that the many becomes the one, but not vice versa.  Thus does imitation come from our directional nature toward the sameness, which underlies the formation of identity by sacrificing or victimizing whoever is different or the opposite.  

The crucial issue of Girardian theory is the “desire,” which is imitational.  In this regard Girard proposes another dimension of desire, the desire for Christ.  While the problem is the desire that causes violence, the solution to the problem can be found in the mimetic desire for Christ.  “Men can dispose of their violence more effectively if they regard the process not as something emanating from within themselves, but as a necessity imposed from without, a divine decree whose least infraction calls down terrible punishment”[xiv]

That is to say, rather than indicating the problem of the directional nature, Girard seeks a solution within the directional nature of human desires.  “Escaping from violence is escaping from this kingdom into another kingdom, whose existence the majority of people do not even suspect.  This is the Kingdom of love, which is also the domain of the true God.”[xv]   For Girard, therefore, mimetic desires serve for both his criticism and his solution.   We can make a peaceful society by turning from imitating other secular models to imitating Christ, the sacred model.  In Christ, the commercialism of the capitalistic society is directed to the economic value of sharing and distributing justice and opportunity for the poor and estranged.  

Moreover, human desire directed toward Christ as love and mercy is an answer to overcome the human desire that leads to violence and war.  “Jesus is the only mediator, the one bridge between the kingdom of violence and the Kingdom of God.”[xvi]   Providing a new model to fulfill our mimetic desires, Christ exemplifies the issue of “diversity-within-unity.” [xvii]  The problem of mimetic desires is “unity as opposed to diversity.”   The evil side of mimetic desires appears when the unity of the members within the same group is exclusive to other groups (i.e., races, sexes, classes, or nations).  In terms of mimetic desires, the scapegoating process is the process to reach unity at the sacrifice of diversity, which then becomes the source of war and violence. 

For Girard, however, mimetic desire toward Christ turns the “unity-against-diversity” into “diversity-within-unity.”   The unity refers to Christ’s desire to promote love and nonviolence.  That is, Christ’s desire is performed only for good.   It embraces all types of difference, as Christ emphasizes loving even one’s enemies.   Therefore, Christ’s desire to proliferate love and nonviolence is based on “diversity-within-unity,” proceeding to a complex unity that embraces diversity.   




                                   The Problem of Directionality


A critical issue that remains, however, is our mimetic desire for Christ in a religiously pluralistic society.   The problem with Girard’s theory of mimetic desires is its “directionality.”    Although its direction is toward Christ, the concept risks becoming an ideology if we do not succeed in overcoming the directional nature of our mimetic desires.   Mimetic desires for good cannot provide answers to solve conflicts and violence within human society if the concepts of good and value systems are defined differently from one religion to another.   The religious values that one tradition believes can be turned into evil by their exclusive opposition to the religious values of others.  Mimetic desires per se are always exposed to conflicts or violence.   If Christ is the answer, how can we solve the conflict between or among religions in a religiously pluralistic society?   From the Girardian perspective, can Buddha be the answer, or can Muhammad be the answer?   Can nonviolence or justice be solved by having faith in great religious figures? 

Following or imitating them is not a simple issue.  Different religious messages or traditions are still one of the important reasons for following them.   Such desires may bring about another kind of violence when one’s own doctrine and religious tradition is in conflict or becomes exclusive to others.  This problem is associated with our mimetic nature based on desires, which has no limitation.   Our mimetic desire inflames our motivation.  Although such a motivation is driven by a good purpose, it requires some limitation or restraint to control it.   Here is a critical issue for Girard’s suggestion for the mimetic desire for Christ.   The need for restraint is a critical response to the directionality of mimetic desires.  

In other words, the problems of economic disadvantage, violence, and war are closely associated with the directional nature of mimetic desires.   Whether or not the directional nature is used for good (i.e., directed toward Christ’s love), it can be exclusive in its reactions to a new value system introduced by other religious or cultural traditions.  

Jesus’ message that “I am the way, the truth, the life, so follow me” is a good example for demonstrating the problem of its directionality.  The meaning of “the way, the truth, [and] the life” should be answered within the context of our own life.  A question arises as to what it means to follow Christ’s way.   Do bad things happen if we do not follow the message composed of those abstract nouns (the way, the truth, and the life)?  An important issue is how to interpret the message of Jesus and apply it to our life context.   In this situation, if we define Jesus as the way, the truth, and the life in a directional way, a religious conflict or a violent action may occur even though we may be claiming to imitate Jesus Christ.  In particular, “follow me” as a statute of Christian life can be directed to an exclusive attitude to other religious figures (Muhammad, Buddha, or Confucius), whereby religious conflicts are contained in the directional movement.   

Several religious values and definitions of love and peace coexist in a religiously pluralistic society: the Buddhist bodhisattva and no-self, Judaic tikun olam (repairing the world), the Hindu moksha, the Islamic jihad (struggle for peace), Daoist wu wei (not doing things contrary to nature), the Confucian meaning of Heaven (the source of self-transformation).       


                             Creativity and Non-Directionality

                             in a Religiously Pluralistic Society


       In such a pluralist environment, imposing another kind of directionality can bring another kind of conflict.  In other words, collective violence and scapegoating cannot be eradicated by any other form of mimetic desire or directional movement.  A solution to violence, war, and economic imbalance based on mimetic desires is not a directional movement only toward good—but rather comprises a non-directional harmony formed by ceaseless contrasts of contrasts in which the opposites (i.e., good and evil, different religious values) are constantly balanced and harmonized toward a complex unity.  There are “no easy solutions to the terrible crisis” made by our mimetic desires.   According to Carl Jung, the alternative to the crisis is not another kind of desires (i.e., desires to only good).  That is to say it is “not upon mass movements for good, nor on idealistic pleas for the prevalence of reason, but rather upon a recognition of the existence of good and evil in every individual and a true understanding of the inner self.”[xviii] 

Mimetic desires ought to be overcome by the non-directional effort to deconstruct all discrimination of nations, neighbors, communities, races, and genders.  The embracing of opposites (through the model of Christ) is evidently suggested by Girard; yet the opposites should be expanded to include different religious traditions beyond the opposites-within-Christ, in order to overcome the conflicts between religious ideologies.    

        Non-directional order can be developed through the horizon of focus-field.  According to William James, the “true self” refers to a transition from the activity of “focus” conducted by ego-consciousness separated from a fringe, i.e., the subconscious, toward the connective self of both by turning our focus into the “whole field” of our perception and experience. 


     My present field of consciousness is a center surrounded by a fringe that shades insensibly into a subconscious .   

     . . The center works in one way while the margins work in another, and presently overpower the center and are  

     central themselves.   What we conceptually identify with and say we are thinking of at any time is the center; but  

     our full self of the whole field.[xix]        


Consciousness is only part of the full self in the continuum of time and space.  James refers to the moment in which the unconscious erupts into ego-consciousness, thereby contributing to self-realization, a process that James calls the participation in a “wider self.”[xx] 

       This shift of consciousness is deeply associated with the issue of time, in the continuity of consciousness and the realization of the full self.  The continuity and identity of consciousness are revealed not in an atomic dimension, but in the construction of a “retrospective and prospective sense of time.”[xxi]   The continuity of consciousness formed through this sense of time becomes the unity of perception and awareness.  “The knowledge of some other part of the stream, past or future, near or remote, is always mixed in with our knowledge of the present thing. . . . In reality, past, present, and future are differences in time, but in presentation all that corresponds to these differences is in consciousness simultaneously.”[xxii]  One can notice the fringe of the remote past and future surrounding the present perception and feeling. 

Likewise, our mimetic desires and behaviors result from our focal activity, which is surrounded by the whole field.  While focal activity is directional, the whole field is non-directional.  In other words, the issues of violence, economic problems, and war proceed with such a focal activity disconnected from its fringe in the whole field.  The whole field is a non-directional field that embraces the fringe.  This field is also implied in Girard’s suggestion to direct our desires toward Christ whose love reaches out to all who are estranged and downtrodden.  Yet the question remains whether this form of desire can be non-directional enough to embrace other religious values.  

The way to overcome our mimetic desires is to achieve the creative advance itself made by change and transformation, rather than another form of desire.  The creative advance is not performed by the common denominator of each partial standpoint.  The part reflects the whole, while the whole is creatively transformed in organic relation to other new entities (i.e., culture or tradition).  This recognition of the whole is an important issue for inter-religious dialogue.  According to Joseph Bracken, “real progress will be made here only if the participants recognize not only the relative character of the truth claims of other religions but also the relative character of the truth claims of their own religion.”[xxiii]

All the truth claims should be able to re-orient themselves in a new dimension of a broader horizon. As Bracken says, a religious tradition does not represent the whole truth:


this is not to say that the truth claims proper to one’s own religion are false or untrue, but only that they do not

represent the whole truth about ultimate reality, whether ultimate reality be conceived as a personal God or as an

impersonal cosmic force.[xxiv]   


Bracken’s recognition of the truth manifested in each religion entails the necessity of inter-religious dialogue in which one finds the weakness of the truth claim limited to one’s own tradition and experience and learns about other religious traditions and experiences.  The horizons of knowledge are always expanded in relation to other horizons and differences in the process of becoming.

However, the whole truth is not understood as the truth attained by the addition of each portion of the truth, which is developed by Euclidean directionality.  From the non-Euclidean way or non-directional way, the part is contained within the whole, and vice versa.  To put it another way, each religious context shows only the facts and values limited to its own context, but refers to the whole that makes multi-dimensional religious values converge.  Since Buddhism does not speak only for itself but the whole world, we should be able to listen and learn about its believers’ truths through their eyes.  That is to say, inter-religious dialogue is necessary not only because each religious tradition is partially true, but also because each refers to the whole in its own terms.  According to this view, the part (each religious tradition) and the whole (the truth) are cyclically repeating in a non-directional way.  

Such a non-directional order is clearly shown in Whitehead’s concept of creativity, which means that the one becomes the many, and vice versa.[xxv]  Creativity refers to the ceaseless interaction between two opposite characters—order and disorder, cosmos and chaos, good and evil, and so forth; one cannot exist without the other.  This means that those two opposites are complementary rather than contradictory.  They are symbiotically related and transformed by each other, so that the opposites constantly produce “novelty”[xxvi] in their multilateral relationship, rather than that one proceeds unilaterally toward the other, i.e., toward a certain final goal such as the kingdom of God or the Universal Community.  

Dynamic tension between the opposites is a great source of creativity in Whitehead’s thought process.  Unlike Aristotle’s Law of Contrast (that something cannot simultaneously be both A and not-A), the paradoxical relation between the contrasts is not the negative agent to be eliminated.  Rather, the positive contrast brings novelty by way of concrescence and transition.   The one-many relationship in Whitehead’s concept of creativity exemplifies such a paradox.  Whitehead’s creativity does not mean that the many proceed toward the one final reality but that the many becomes the one and vice versa in a cyclical paradigm.  According to Whitehead, concrescence is described as a “micro-cosmic process” in which an actual entity is developed and forms itself as a particular being in relationship with other actual entities.[xxvii]   In other words, concrescence indicates that the disjunctive “many” through transition is transformed into a new unity, which has its own unique features through “final cause.”[xxviii]   At this point, the disjunctive “many” participate in the process, forming a new unity.  They make up an actual occasion in a moment when various kinds of entities are “together,” so that “many” coexist in a new entity.[xxix]  

This process of concrescence is distinctively different from the directional way to a single unity, because the one unity attained by the process of concrescence is constantly open to the many.  When an actual entity attains its completion with its unique features by the process of concrescence, the entity continuously participates in the constitution of ‘many.’   As such, a completed entity offers itself as data for other actual entities and participates in the formation of new entities.  Whitehead calls this process “transition.”[xxx]   According to Whitehead, transition is the macrocosmic process that moves from one particular existent to another particular existent.[xxxi]   That is to say, concrescence and transition are not directional; concrescence is open to transition, and vice versa, through ceaseless interconnections between the opposites.       

The one in concrescence and transition does not mean the one as opposed to the many.  Rather it means a complex unity.  “The many components of a complex datum have a unity: this unity is a ‘contrast of entities.’”[xxxii]   In other words, the creative advance in the one-many dynamic relation is made by proceeding “from ‘contrasts’ to ‘contrasts of contrasts,’” which does not mean proceeding to the ultimate end but “indefinitely to higher grades of contrasts.”[xxxiii]   If we follow this position of Whitehead, creative advance does not refer to mass movements or mimetic desires only for good, but rather to ceaseless contrasts of contrasts in which the opposites (i.e., good and evil) are constantly intermingled in the journey toward non-directional order and harmony.        




From the Girardian perspective, the lower category of human mimetic desires needs to be transformed to the level of higher category of desires, the desires for good.   I argue, however, that this level of higher category can be attained in a non-directional way through the embracing of opposites.   This non-directional way is for a means to embrace “diversity-within-diversity” in which the opposites are constantly circulated, correlated, and open to another opposite, formulating higher grades of contrasts.  Non-directional harmony is achieved in higher grades of contrasts, a key to openness.   The Girardian suggestion of the mimetic desires for good indicates embracing “diversity-within-unity (i.e., Christ’s love).”   However, such a unity should also be open to another opposite (i.e., Hindu devotion, Islamic peace, Confucian filial piety, etc.), performing another diversity.  Given this paradigm for diversity-within-diversity, all directions are intermingled and enriched through the contrasts of contrasts. 

It is the directional nature that underlies the problem of mimetic desires; violence, war, and economic inequality are rooted in their directional movement to the sameness by victimizing the opposite or creating a scapegoat.   The critical issue is the directionality of human society, directed to self-desire, gender/class privilege, economic interest, racial/national superiority, or religious ideology.  This directedness causes classicism, commercialism, sexism, racism, nationalism, and religious exclusivism, whereby violence and war will never cease.  Given this scenario, I presented the deconstruction of directionality, i.e., non-directional harmony and order, which is conducted by means of an open-ended series of connections between and among opposites for developing higher grades of contrasts, not for creating unity or the sameness that could bring about further exclusivity or conflict.





[i]     Andrews J. McKenna, Violence and Difference: Girard, Derrida, and Deconstruction  (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1992), 106.

[ii]     Rene Girard, The Scapegoat, Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press, 1986), 1-10.  

[iii]     Rene Girard, Violence and the Sacred, Baltimore, MD: the Johns Hopkins University Press, 1977), 79.

[iv]     Rene Girard, Things Hidden since the Foundation of the World (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1987), 197. 

[v]     Rene Girard, To Double Business Bound: Essays on Literature, Mimesis, and Anthropology (Baltimore, Maryland: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1978), 78-83.

[vi]     Girard, The Scapegoat, 170-181.

[vii]     Rene Girard, Violence and the Sacred, Baltimore, MD: the Johns Hopkins University Press, 1977), 7.

[viii]     Girard, To Double Business Bound, 1978, 190-191.

[ix]     Rene Girard, “Python and his two wives: An exemplary scapegoat myth,” in The Girard Reader, ed. J. G. William (New York: Crossroad, 1996), 199.   

[x]     Rene Girard, “Python and his two wives: An exemplary scapegoat myth,” 118-141.    

[xi]     P. J. Watson, “Girard and Integration: Desire, Violence, and the Mimesis of Christ as Foundation for Postmodernity,” in Journal of Psychology and Theology, 1998, vol. 26, No. 4, 314.

[xii]     Rene Girard, “Girard Paper,” in Violent Origins: Walter Burkert, Rene Girard, and Jonathan Z. Smith on Ritual Killing and Cultural Formation, ed. Robert G. Hamerton Kelley (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1987), 113-29.

[xiii]     Rene Girard, “The Founding Murder in the Philosophy of Nietzsche,” in Violence and Truth: on the Work of Rene Girard, ed. Paul Dumouchel (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1988), 244.

[xiv]     Rene Girard, Violence and the Sacred, (Baltimore, Maryland: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1977), 14.

[xv]     Girard, Things Hidden since the Foundation of the World, 197. 

[xvi]     Ibid., 216.

[xvii]     Michael Kirwan, Discovering Girard, (Cambridge, MA: Cowley Publications, 2005), 112-125.

[xviii]     C. G. Jung, The Undiscovered Self, trans. R. F. C. Hull (New York: Mentor, 1959), 124.

[xix]     William James, A Pluralistic Universe (New York: Longmans, Green, and Co., 1916), 288-9.

[xx]     William James, The Varieties of Religious Experience (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1985), 400.

[xxi]     William James, The Principles of Psychology, vol. 1 (New York: Dover Publication, 1950),


[xxii]     Ibid., 606, 630.

[xxiii]     Joseph Bracken, S.J., Christianity and Process Thought: Spirituality for A Changing World (London and Philadelphia: Templeton Foundation Press, 2006), 75.

[xxiv]     Ibid., 76.

[xxv]     A. N. Whitehead, Process and Reality: An Essay in Cosmology, ed. David Ray Griffin and Donald W. Sherburne (New York: The Free Press, 1978), 19.

[xxvi]     Ibid., 21.

[xxvii]     Ibid., 214.

[xxviii]     Ibid., 212.

[xxix]     Ibid., 21.

[xxx]     Ibid., 210.

[xxxi]     Ibid., 55.

[xxxii]     Ibid., 36.

[xxxiii]     Ibid., 212.