The Dogmat’s Dictionary: Mystical Body Dysphoria

The Dogmat

Mystical Body Dysphoria (MBD): A condition that occurs when a member of the Mystical Body of Christ feels strongly that another member of the Mystical Body of Christ is an alien being forming no part of the body and who must therefore be cast into the outer darkness. MBD generally occurs because the second member is insufficiently similar to the first in terms of apostolate, liturgical or devotional preference, evangelical priorities, political affiliation, or other areas of interest. MBD is … [Read more...]

The Dogmat saw Cosplayers, Millennials, and Tyrian, O My!


The Dogmat saw strange and amazing things this week, from Daleks in dresses to Tyrian Lannister à la Walt Disney. To wit:Good news for cosplayers: McCalls and Simplicity now have sewing patterns for you: So now you can make your Dalek and Tardis dresses using patterns from the bigs instead of the smalls. Of course, real Dr. Who cosplayers make their costumes using only a sonic screwdriver and a spool of thread.Microsoft to Teachers: Using Pens and Paper Not Fair to Students: The … [Read more...]

Steven Pressfield: The Lion’s Gate

The Lion's Gate: Paperback

Last year I read and reviewed Steven Pressfield's excellent book The Lion's Gate, which tells the story of many of the men and women involved in the Six Day War in their own words:I was surprised by this book in a number of ways. My notions of Israel are unavoidably colored by my impressions of the biblical kingdoms of Israel and Judah in the days of David, Solomon, and their successors; though I knew better, from other reading I’ve done, I still rather expected the Israelis to be zealous f … [Read more...]

My Road to Catholic Belief

Mountain Highway

Last week I explained why there is no magic bullet for belief, no simple, straightforward argument that will compel belief in the Christian God.  This raises some questions: how do believers come to believe in Christianity?  And how can Christian belief be rational absent such proofs?First, most Christians come to belief experientially.  Some are taught as children, and later reach out to accept what God has for them: they "taste and see that the Lord is good," as scripture has it.  Others co … [Read more...]

Today’s Aquinas: Natural Theology in a Nutshell


We’re blogging through St. Thomas Aquinas’ Compendium Theologiae, sometimes called his Shorter Summa. Find the previous posts here.Chapter 35 of Thomas’ Compendium Theologiae is a nutshell summary of everything that has gone before: From all the details of doctrines thus far discussed, we can gather that God is one, simple, perfect, and infinite, and that He understands and wills. All these truths are assembled in a brief article of our Creed, wherein we profess to believe “in one God, almig … [Read more...]

Arriving at Amen: An Interview with Leah Libresco


Leah Libresco, of the Unequally Yoked blog here at Patheos, has written a book entitled Arriving at Amen: Seven Catholic Prayers That Even I Can Offer.  I hope to offer a full review of Leah’s book sometime in the next week or so (capsule summary: I liked it); in the meantime I’ll just say that Leah’s unique—I might say inimitable—take on certain common Catholic prayers and devotions will cause you to see them in a new light, and perhaps understand and appreciate them more than ever before. That … [Read more...]

Puttin’ on the Ritz in Fits: Fred Astaire meets Gene Wilder


Because these things make me smile, here are two famous performances of Irving Berlin's "Puttin' on the Ritz". First, let's have Fred Astaire:Next, of course, Gene Wilder and Froderick Fronkensteen's Monster:And for those of you who just can't enough, here's the original performance, sung by Harry Richman in the movie of the same name:Finally, here's Mr. Astaire again, with some Club de Belugas. The additions are occasionally jarring, but … [Read more...]

The Dogmat: Preaching, Double Spaces, and Unfair Readings to Kids


The Dogmat saw quite a lot this week: on preaching, the post-mortem accessibility of double-spaces, the inhumanity of reading to your kids, and What Would Patsy Do?Preaching: What Works? Why Does it Matter?: Jen Fitz tells us some things the Dogmat thinks we really ought to keep in mind while preaching the Gospel.You Can Have My Double Space When You Pry it From My Cold, Dead Hands: The Dogmat favors fixed pitch fonts, and is glad that others Brings the … [Read more...]

Ngaio Marsh: Night at the Vulcan


Night at the Vulcan, also published as Opening Night, is the sixteenth of Ngaio Marsh’s Roderick Alleyn mysteries, and yet another set in the world of the theater; I had forgotten how many of these there were.  I had almost completely forgotten it, and found it enchanting on re-acquaintance.  The only problem with it is that it isn’t terribly satisfying considered strictly as a mystery; there’s a little too much deus ex machine about the conclusion.The tale concerns the days leading up to the … [Read more...]