From “Demons”

"That's all lies, you are a very wicked man, and I conclusively expressed your groundlessness to you just now," the girl student replied disdainfully, as if scorning too many explanations with such a man. "I precisely told you just now that we were all taught by the catechesis: 'If you honor your father and your parents, you'll live a long life and be granted wealth.' It's in the ten commandments. If God found it necessary to offer a reward for love, it means your God is immoral. These are the … [Read more...]

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From Denise Levertov, “To Live in the Mercy of God”

Such passion— rage or joy?                               Thus, not mild, not temperate, God’s love for the world. Vast flood of mercy                       flung on resistance. … [Read more...]

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The Mountain Goats: Disco Purgatorio

I listen to an album, at AmCon. … [Read more...]

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From Peter de Vries, “Overture”

“God,” I said, “like Alfred Hitchcock, vouchsafes us only glimpses of Himself. I have often thought of this. And also that we make a game of trying to spot Him in this scene and then that, till we’ve squandered the revelation of the whole instead of simply accepting and enjoying what He has created.” --actually via Helen of course … [Read more...]

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From Francis Spufford, “Unapologetic”

You discover that repetition itself, curiously, is not the enemy of spontaneity, but maybe even its enabler.  Saying the same prayers again and again, pacing your body again and again through the set movements of faith, somehow helps keep the door ajar through which He may come.  The words may strike you as ecclesiastical blah nine times in ten, or ninety-nine times in a hundred, and then be transformed, and then have the huge fresh wind blowing through them into your little closed room.  And me … [Read more...]

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Recognition is a feeling. Especially if you’re in “ElfQuest.”

So now I've read the entire Grauniad article from which that Francis Spufford quote was pulled. A couple thoughts: 1. The bit Alan Jacobs quoted was the best bit.2. The opening is much too long, and seems whiny. Possibly in Britain this comes across as extended self-deprecating humor?3. Spufford seems to be conflating a few things. When he says that "emotions" are the form and substance of his faith, I think he means both recognition--he recognizes in Christianity something shaped the … [Read more...]

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A Very Ingmar Bergman Christmas

in which I stare at Winter Light like a Dostoyevskyan married couple staring at a spider. The comments are already interesting, and you should go make them even more so! … [Read more...]

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