Lancelot Andrewes, Bishop of Winchester, 1626 | For All the Saints

A devoted scholar, hard-working and accurate, and a master of fifteen languages, Lancelot Andrewes was renowned for his learning and for his preaching, and was a seminal influence on the development of a distinctive reformed Catholic theology in the Church of England.

Source: Lancelot Andrewes, Bishop of Winchester, 1626 | For All the Saints

A man whose memory I hold in the highest esteem!
 
“Andrewes was one of the principal influences in the formation of a distinctly Reformed Catholic Anglican theology, which in reaction to the rigidity of the Puritanism of his time, he insisted should be moderate in tone and catholic in content and perspective. Convinced that true theology must be built on sound learning, he cultivated the friendship of such divines as Richard Hooker and George Herbert, as well as of scholars from abroad…
 
“Andrewes held a high doctrine of the Eucharist, emphasizing that in the sacrament we receive the true Body and Blood of Christ, and he consistently used sacrificial language of the rite. He desired the Church of England to express its liturgy in ordered ceremonial and in his own chapel used the mixed chalice (wine and water), incense, and altar-lights (candles).”
 
He is also the man responsible for perhaps the clearest and most concise description of the doctrinal standards held by classical Anglicanism:
 
“One canon [of Scripture] reduced to writing by God himself, two testaments, three creeds, four general councils, five centuries, and the series of Fathers in that period – the centuries that is, before Constantine, and two after, determine the boundary of our faith.”

 

Why are ‘progressives’ so anti-freedom? | Psephizo

It is increasingly clear with each passing year that public life has been colonised by the zealots of a progressive creed of equality and diversity. It is a continuously evolving creed and you have to keep up…

Source: Why are ‘progressives’ so anti-freedom? | Psephizo

Even if one is a fan of multiculturalism and diversity – concerning which, in their current incarnation (as I have made clear elsewhere), I have grave reservations – it’s hard to keep up when the above-mentioned zealots keep moving the goalposts. This is an excellent article in a number of regards, but one line near the beginning really jumped out at me:

“Once-feted feminists are pilloried for not embracing transgender ideology.”

Hmmmmm. Let’s think about this for a moment, shall we? One of the core tenets of the transgender movement is that a) God or Nature can “make a mistake,” and incorrectly “assign” one’s “gender,” which one can then “reassign” through (in descending levels of invasiveneness and commitment) surgery, hormone injections, or simply declaration (including a self-designation of “gender fluid”), and b) one “is” whatever “gender” one “self-identifieds” as, and woe betide anyone who disagrees.

Well, where does that leave women – real, biological, genetic women, I’m talking about – whose foremothers fought for decades and centuries to attain equality and the ability to compete on a level playing field (both literally – as in the case of Title IX athletics – and figuratively), if a biological / genetic male “self-declares” that he is now a she, and claims the right to compete as one? Pardon me, but I can easily imagine Susan B. Anthony, and many another early feminist, suffragette, and activist for women’s rights, rolling over in their graves!

To be fair, colleges and even the Olympics are struggling with this issue, and trying to come up with a fair and reasonable work-around. But outside the pragmatic issue of fair competition between athletes, the philosophical and even moral (what does it mean to decide God or Nature has “made a mistake,” and what are the implications thereof) issues remain.

As do the practical ones: at what point do all sorts of programs and accommodations, originally intended to help make up for what were viewed (rightly in some cases and more questionably in others) to be inherent advantages on the part of males, lose their meaning if they are based on “self-identification,” not objective biological and genetic criteria?

There have even been a few people who have unilaterally decided they are of a different race: does “white privilege” (so-called; this is another issue concerning which I have grave reservations) go away if one self-identifies as African-American, Hispanic, etc.? It follows logically (or illogically) from self-identification as a corrective to incorrect gender assignment.

Now, I doubt that, if I were to suddenly “self-identify” as an African-American, I would be recognized as such, and entitled to any and all programs, subsidies, etc., that are in place to assist African-Americans, or be welcomed into the African-American community as a long-lost brother. Nor should I be!

Yet, as I say, that is the logical (or illogical) conclusion, stemming from self-identification as defining gender. And does this mean that “furries” (those who identify as particular types of animals) should be treated as if they really were wolves, foxes, cats, etc.? (In some cases, that would mean being shot, trapped, or chased with hounds and horses – be careful what you ask for!) Once again, the slippery slope kicks in… or, to borrow from an old Arabic proverb, once the camel’s nose is in the tent, it’s hard to keep the rest of the camel out! But where does it end?

There are reasons why traditional understandings, and traditional norms, existed, and it is not primarily to keep people down. It is to allow reason, logic, and actual – not imagined – equity to apply.

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world.
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

— William Butler Yeats (1885-1939), “The Second Coming”

Truer now than it was in Yeats’ own time…

 

If You Live in Freedom, Thank the British Empire | YouTube

More on the British Empire, and its gifts to Western civilization and the world – yes, including the United States of America!

One thing is for sure, we would not be America without it.

In Defence of the British Empire (2015), by Sean Gabb

Source: In Defence of the British Empire (2015), by Sean Gabb

The British Empire was not perfect, by any means. But what human institution ever is? As this points out,

“empires are a regrettable [sic] fact of history. The British Empire was not the first or last, and not at all the worst. Rather than condemned for its faults, which were common to all empires, it should be praised for its virtues, which were unique to our own country.”

These virtues included

“the suppression of the slave trade and slavery, the suppression of banditry and piracy, the spread of English law and science and the English language to formerly benighted regions of the world.”

If you are a part of the Anglophone (English-speaking) world, and enjoy the rule of law, the fruits of science and industry, and a modicum of peace, you may thank the British Empire!