A thought worth pondering, I think.
A thought worth pondering, I think.
While I’m on Russian Insider: an interesting article on an interesting individual!
“In contrast to the values of the marketplace, [Glazunov] calls for placing spiritual and political ideals in first place. He believes that patriotism, service to society and its head, a monarch, are far more important than filthy lucre.”
Two examples of his paintings will illuminate the point. Continue reading “A Conservative Russian Lion With Real Mass Influence – The Painter Ilya Glazunov | Russian Insider”
Just one more, and then I promise I will recede back into my self-imposed Lenten sabbatical, at least for a while…!
This came across my news-feed just this morning:
Nowadays, this is all too sadly true.
Too many young women today are destroying their natural beauty with tattoos and piercings, scrawling all over the masterpiece God made them to be, and dressing to be provocative or shocking rather than in ways that exemplify an objective standard of beauty, such as that expressed by St. Thomas Aquinas:
“Beauty, as St. Thomas says, is objective and has four attributes: truth, goodness, oneness and symmetry. Beauty, when comprised of these qualities, directs us to God…
“Truth can be seen in clothing [and, I would add, other forms of adornment] that identifies the wearer as a man or woman, his status and occupation, even his character and family. Goodness is in the quality of materials and fine workmanship, and in the modesty that respects the natural virtues. Oneness is in the completeness of the ensemble and the way it matches in an ordered way. Symmetry is the proportion, consistency and uniformity that comprise it.
See the images above and to the right, and below, for classic examples! Examples of the alternative are all too easy to find, and need not be dwelt upon.
“This can be applied to everything: music and architecture, furnishings in the home, work and crafts, words and manners, meals and dinner tables, beautiful prayers and good reading. Local traditions sustain cultural beauty in holidays, ceremonies and ways of being that began long ago when people turned to God and received a flow of grace to generations. This realization makes us love and keep alive tradition. Beauty is expressed in many cultures and is diverse since God’s creation is immense. However, beauty cannot go against the natural order.”
Traditionalism, the revolt against the excesses of the modern (and postmodern) age, is indeed the new counterculture. Be counter-cultural! Be a rebel! Vive la révolution nuvelle et ancienne! Ce qui est vieux est nouveau.
Note: the young woman pictured above may be the lovely and talented Marilena – looks a lot like her, but I’m not sure it actually is. At any rate, be sure to click through to the linked video to see an example of how a young woman can be flirty and irresistible, without being degenerate in the process!
“It is sometimes more progressive to look back a thousand years than to look forward three weeks.”
— Martin Thornton, English Spirituality
Who is Martin Thornton? Here is a brief introduction (click here for the more substantive one from which this is excerpted) that might be helpful:
“A farmer, Anglican priest and spiritual director who lived primarily in the UK yet also taught in the US (and almost became a professor at Nashotah House), Thornton’s voice in his 13 books remains remarkably sober, pastoral, and witty—yet rigorously theological and erudite.
His purpose was simple: he wanted to equip priests and lay catechists with the appropriate tools to teach prayer—liturgically, biblically, doctrinally, devotionally—that cultivates Anglican parish health within the Catholic Church toward our eventual union with the Holy Trinity at the Second Coming of Christ. His value to us today is that he wrote in prophetic anticipation of the then-nascent reconfiguration of Christian life to post-Christendom. That is, he wrote not to ‘keep the boat afloat’ but rather to ‘pick up after the party.’
“Anglicans have got themselves into quite a predicament, to put it mildly. For Thornton, the recovery of Anglican strength and genius lies not in recreating past glory but rather ressourcement: creative re-application through prayer of what formed us in the first place. It should then come as no surprise that his theological outlook is anchored in the Book of Common Prayer seen as Regula, that is, as a corporate system or Rule of ‘ascetic’ in the tradition of the Rule of Saint Benedict.”
Conservatives and traditionalists are often accused of romanticizing the past, viewing it through the proverbial “rose-colored glasses,” ignoring its faults and over-emphasizing its virtues. Maybe so. Every age has its issues, the past no less than the present. Still, as someone who has studied the past, and especially the Middle Ages, for most of my life – including two degrees in the field – I think there is considerable truth to this!
H/T to Jonathan McCormack for the image.
“Believe it or not, tradition works. So-called ‘old ways’ are quite popular among younger Catholics. Smells, bells, classic hymns, chant, prolonged silence, and, hold on for this one, LATIN are all largely embraced by the younger generations of the Church. Furthermore, when younger non-Catholics experience these traditions they are struck by how different they are from everything else they experience in a noisy, secular culture. These ‘old ways’ are beautiful to them, and beauty is a great place to introduce young folks to Jesus Christ.”
– Fr. Edwin C. Dwyer, Our Lady of Peace Parish (Roman Catholic), Bay City, Michigan
Now, I am an Anglican, so while I personally like Latin in the liturgy (and a Latin form of the Prayer Book liturgy was, in fact, used in Chapels Royal as late as the time of Queen Elizabeth I), I’m not going to be pushing for it at St. Bede’s!
But otherwise, I am in complete agreement. What Fr. Dwyer says about younger Catholics I believe to be just as true for younger Anglicans; in fact, it seems to be the case across the spectrum of sacramental, liturgical Churches: the churches that are growing, that are attracting young people, are the traditional ones.
And traditional liturgy seems to be drawing more young people who have grown up in contemporary, non-denominational, evangelical, and “community” churches toward those Churches that are in fact rooted in historic, ancient liturgies, in the sacraments, and in traditional, orthodox understandings of the Christian faith.
As Fr. Dwyer puts it,
“we are going to make [our worship] more beautiful with tradition. We are going to look, and sound, and smell vastly different from the rest of the world on Sundays. It will be a religious experience that, at the very least, will be memorable to the young who encounter it.”
As the old saying has it, “what is old, is new again.” Thanks be to God!
I occupy what I suppose some might consider a “moderate” position on the abortion issue, in that I believe abortion should be safe (to protect the life and health of women, in the event that it is medically necessary – and yes, that does occur, at times), legal (to ensure that it is safe), and rare (because the taking of a human life should always be a last resort, never ever a first option – and abortion should never be considered a form of birth control). I am resolutely opposed to the reprehensible calls by those on the extreme left for abortion “on demand, without apology” – and expecting the government (and thus, the taxpayers) to fund it.
On the subject of “my body, my choice” – frequently touted by those advocating the pro-abortion position – this is obviously false on its face: a fetus may depend on the woman’s body for its survival, prior to a certain stage of gestation, but from the moment of conception it is clearly a distinct individual, having its own individual genetic makeup (combining genes from both parents), and its own distinct, individual development.
“My body”? As one recent photo of a pro-life poster (which I wish I could find; I apparently failed to save it) put the matter, “since when do we think a woman has four legs, four arms, two heads, two hearts, and two different sets of genes?” It is not (just) a woman’s body; and therefore her sovereignty over it is a shared sovereignty: shared with the father of the child, and with the unborn child itself, who from the moment of conception is a child not only of his or her human parents, but a child of God.
Therefore it is with encouragement and optimism that I greet reports that the March for Life in Washington, DC, which occurred on Friday (18 January 2019) was reportedly the largest to date, with a turnout that may have been as high as 300,000 – many, if not most, of these being young people. Those on the Left who think that time is on their side, that all they have to do is wait for all the “old fogeys” to die off, may be unpleasantly surprised by the conservatism of the rising generation!
These young people have seen the failures and consequences of the “Me Generation,” and of the failed political and social experiments of the Left since the 1960s, and in many cases, want none of it. Indeed, it seems that we are seeing the beginning of a serious and growing backlash… thanks be to God.