And We Behold His Glory

Most major mythologies say that humanity will end up in either a hades or a heaven. Their destination might be based on merit, usually on wealth, sometimes on whim. But there they go, either through a series of perfection or an interrupting rapture. It’s hard to imagine an ending to the world other than one or the other. This cosmic threshing remains a philosophical option. The mythology lives on.Take, for instance, the first season of HBO’s “True Detective.” Much has been written about the s … [Read more...]

Kim Kierkegaardashian and the Culture of Nothingness

“Rise & grind! Busy day!! Gym then packing 4 Paris again! This is the despair of finitude, when the self is lost to the temporal, the trivial,” tweeted Kim Kierkegaardashian, a Twitter account that combines Søren Kierkegaard quotes and Kim Kardashian’s tweets. As the New Yorker reports, this feed offers “reflective maxims on life, death, sin, and emptiness, salted with luxury accessories of the Kardashian lifestyle.” The Washington Post explains, “Basically what you have is profound ideas tha … [Read more...]

Sherwood Anderson and the Platonic Touch

A couple of weeks ago, Leah Libresco wrote an excellent article suggesting that our society’s neglect of platonic touch is among one of the many things we need to address if we are to reverse the sexualization of contact that dominates our lives today. In lieu of alternative stories and models of interpersonal relationship, the “friend zone” becomes a dead end, an impasse to be overcome if greater intimacy is to be won. She writes: The friendzone is treated as a wasteland not just because we tre … [Read more...]

Ignorance: A Blessing

There are some things that I know with certainty. The sum of two and three is five. All mothers are women. A triangle has three sides. My back hurts. I am currently writing a blog post and trying to think of another example that doesn’t sound too trite. I think most would agree that the degree of certainty which I have about these things is so high that I cannot not know them.On the other hand, there are many things that I cannot know with certainty. Some of these things are fairly i … [Read more...]

Winter’s Humbling

Cuttings of yellow forsythia bloom on my coffee table as March threatens its last (fingers crossed) snowstorm... Finally. I confess a sigh of relief at the resurgence of sunshine, warmth and colors other than brown, gray and white. Winter's grip on the Earth is growing weak in the face of spring's insistent return, yet its bleak work has primed me for the impudent  joy of crocuses blooming beside melting snowdrifts. Like winter's firm discipline has prepared the tired earth for sprouting seeds, … [Read more...]

Why Fast?

Christ in the Wilderness- Ivan Kramskoy- 1872

 For as long as I can remember, my dad has fasted every Wednesday and Friday – eating nothing but bread and drinking nothing but water. At a young age, the very prospect of fasting seemed not only daunting but ludicrous. Human loves exist to attract us to the things that are good for us. And food is obviously good. Why would you want to deprive yourself of it?The most obvious answer to this question is that you may want to abstain from eating for health reasons. But this very p … [Read more...]

Reforming Desire

Heaven

 I recently heard a priest make the following statement in a homily on the virtue of faith: “As a teenager, I thought that Heaven was essentially a mass that never ended. The very idea of sitting through a never-ending series of church hymns repulsed me. Nevertheless, I wanted to want this because I believed I should.”Putting aside the idea of Heaven as a never-ending series of church hymns, a few immensely important questions arise from this glimpse into a very common Christian exp … [Read more...]


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