Francis, Benedict, and Pelagius

Pelagius

Yesterday’s tempest in a Z-cup focused on Pope Francis’s curious phrase “self-absorbed promethean neopelagianism,” used to describe certain factions within Catholic traditionalism. I remain puzzled that Francis has, on multiple occasions, felt the need to single out traditionalists for criticism, given the nature of evil at large in world. Most traditionalists are good and holy [Read More...]

Stephen’s Service: The Apostles of Acts

Stoning_of_St_Stephen

Stephen blazes across Acts like a comet, his brief ministry beginning in two chapters that interrupt the story of Peter and form a bridge to the conversion of Paul. Before he falls under the stones of the mob, he leaves a vivid impression as one of the only people other than Peter or Paul given [Read More...]

Medieval Warrior Snails

snail

The British Library’s Medieval Manuscripts Blog has an interesting compilation of marginal art depicting knights charging at snails. I’ve seen snails in marginals before, but never realized they were such a persistent motif. The symbolism and placement is still puzzling to many medievalists, particularly since the snail did not have a stable meaning associated with [Read More...]

Francis and Benedict, Peter and John

John and Peter

I’m fortunate to have read Pope Francis’ interview before reading any of the fooforaw. Reading him cold, I saw not a single thing out of line with the papacy of Benedict XVI, which is why I was surprised at all the gnashing of teeth going on about a few words taken out of context by the [Read More...]

Spinoza’s Excommunication from the People of Israel

spinoza_statue

Humanities has a good article analyzing the causes for the uniquely vicious writ of excommunication pronounced upon the philosopher Baruch Spinoza by the leaders of the Portuguese Jewish community in Amsterdam. The text is notable for its eye-popping condemnations, curses, and vitriol, particularly since it was written before Spinoza had published any controversial opinions. Let’s [Read More...]

This is the Wood of the Cross

Christ falls with the cross Domenicino ...ITALIAN (1581-1641) The Getty Center, Los Angeles - U.S.A.

Thanks for your patience over the last month while I throttled back on the more regular and/or serious blogging to take some time with family. This summer has been hell, and I thought some time away from the computer would be a good thing, particularly in the dog days of summer when all the cool [Read More...]

St. Augustine and the Jews

The pilleus cornutus was a pointed had which medieval Jewish men had to wear when travelling outside their ghettos.

This is a post from way back at the beginning of this blog, but it’s one of the better things I’ve published here and it wasn’t seen by too many people at the time. Since today is the feast day of St. Augustine, I decided to rerun it.  The paper was the product of a [Read More...]

Meditations on the Tarot: A Conclusion UPDATED

Valentin Tomberg

Note: This is the last in a series which looks at the real history of Tarot. I do not deny that Tarot has occult connections which are seriously problematic for Catholics. This series is not about fortune telling, but about cultural history and gaming. I was beginning to worry that God and the Machine would be All [Read More...]


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