SHADOWS SEARCHING FOR WHAT CAST THEM: From all that I have said to this point it emerges that men and women are on a journey of discovery which is humanly unstoppable--a search for the truth and a search for a person to whom they might entrust themselves.--John Paul II, Fides et Ratio (my comments, for what they're worth) … [Read more...]

"DON'T YOU KNOW WHAT IS HAPPENING?": An amazing essay from Fr Richard Neuhaus, on a "near-life experience." The reactions of others; the altar as "axis mundi"; the horrible noises of a hospital at night; the way that when you're really sick you can't imagine being well, and when you're well you can't imagine being really sick; the distance, but also the commonality. Sick and well feel like different species, but of course the latter is just the former without apprehension. And of course, the … [Read more...]

THE SOUL OF A CONTROVERSY: David B. Hart...The "living soul" of Scripture is the whole corporeal and spiritual totality of a person whom the breath of God has wakened to life. Thomas Aquinas, interpreting centuries of Christian and pagan metaphysics, defined the immortal soul as the "form of the body," the vital power animating, pervading, shaping an individual from the moment of conception, drawing all the energies of life into a unity.This is not to deny that, for Christian tradition, the soul … [Read more...]

FOR ONCE, YOU MUST NOT TRY TO SHIRK THE FACTS: Kesher Talk remains a necessary source for understanding what happened to Terri Schiavo.Again, I think this is the most important thing most people can read about this case.All of us have an inoperable illness. For the best of us, death is the crown of our lives, the title of the story. For those of us in the wealthy West--where, honestly, I'm not going to die from a mine explosion or a suicide bomb or a factory fire--death is at least one of three … [Read more...]

CIGARETTES AND WHISKEY AND WILD, WILD WOMEN: Reviews of comics and movies and TV.Comics: Planetes v. 4.2. I don't know why this is "volume four, part two" rather than something sane like, say, "volume five." Nonetheless, I loved this manga book. (Manga = cheap. You should read it!) It's really funny. The Golden Age sci-fi wonder at the beauty of the universe is still brilliantly combined with a 21st-century disillusionment about human perfectibility. (Wherever you go, there you are.) And in this … [Read more...]

THE 1947 PROJECT: True-crime tales from 1947 Los Angeles. Via Hit & Run. … [Read more...]

AGAINST MUGABE:A senior Zimbabwean clergyman has issued an unprecedented plea for a peaceful Ukraine-style "popular mass uprising" to remove President Robert Mugabe after elections this week.The highly respected Catholic Archbishop of Bulawayo, the Most Rev Pius Ncube, said that the parliamentary elections on Thursday were certain to be rigged. "I hope that people get so disillusioned that people really organise against this government and kick him [Mr Mugabe] out by non- violent popular mass … [Read more...]