September 4, 2019

So since people are up in arms over this Harry Potter debacle…and seeing as I’m an ex-Potterhead, I thought I’d weigh in. I’ll start by saying that I got involved in witchcraft and occult practices after reading Harry Potter when I was about 10 years old. That being said, I’m not the kind of Catholic that thinks that readings stories about witches and spells is intrinsically evil, and that Harry Potter should be forbidden. But I definitely don’t think that… Read more

August 29, 2019

“We have all known the long loneliness and we have learned that the only solution is love and that love comes with community.”  Why do we often feel so lonely…even when surrounded by groups of people, whether physically or digitally? I find that even when I’m hanging out with people who care about me, when we’re having a good time enjoying each other’s company, that loneliness creeps in. Even when I receive those little dopamine inducing digital indications of approval… Read more

August 23, 2019

In the previous post, I pointed out that moralistic alternatives to consumerism (self-acceptance, selflessness) can only temporarily mask our drive to consume. We will never be able to get rid of our attraction to material objects or to beauty. What is needed is not to diminish these attractions, but instead to channel them toward a truer object or end.  As much as I ate up the moralistic messages fed to me as a child (“accept yourself as you are,” “the… Read more

August 17, 2019

I grew up with conflicting messages regarding the meaning of my life, my body, and human relationships. According to my teachers and other champions of moral uprightness, life was a constant battle between the ways of “society” and the ways of being a good person who is true to him or herself and who cares about others. The elusive boogeyman known as “society” wants us to think that in order to be happy, we need a successful job, nice clothes,… Read more

August 5, 2019

I finished the last post in this series with an open question. The existential conundrum that Bad Bunny conveys in his music–between an attitude of complacency/distraction and openness/seeking truth–represents the experience of many who are on the cusp of Gens Y and Z (millennials and the iGen). This teetering between poles can prove exhausting…Where can they find respite? What are the options available to them?  One is that of the Nueva Religion: optimistic nihilism. Accept that meaning is not created… Read more

August 2, 2019

In the previous article in this series, I pointed out the tension between Bad Bunny’s “New Religion” of optimistic nihilism and his desire for objective meaning. I proposed that this tension represents the great existential conundrum faced by those on the cusp of Gens Y and Z. In this article, we’ll look at how this tension is expressed in his lyrics (note that the translations of these songs from Spanish to English are either my own or from Genius). Estamos… Read more

July 29, 2019

The music of Benito Antonio Martinez Ocasio, popularly known as Bad Bunny, features catchy trap and reggaeton rhythms produced by Latin America’s finest. Known for his norm-bending sense of fashion (nail polish, all-seeing eye on his forehead) and highly symbolic music videos, Bad Bunny’s craft and persona speak to the distinct sensibilities of his generation.  In an interview with Complex magazine, El Conejo Malo presents himself as a voice for the ideals of those on the cusp of Gen Y… Read more

July 25, 2019

Are women’s bodies a problem to be overcome, or a gift to society? Pro-life feminists are challenging mainstream feminist discourse by affirming that the totality of womanhood, including her capacity to generate new life and her call to motherhood, is a good to be shared with all. The NWF was founded in 2004 by purple-haired Destiny Herndon-De La Rosa. Herndon’s conception was unplanned. She calls her mother’s choice to carry her to term—and all the sacrifices that went along with… Read more

July 21, 2019

I was brought to tears this afternoon by seeing the photos of the 70 Catholics who were arrested at the nation’s capitol. As much as I’m concerned by the treatment of migrants at the border, I tend not to be moved by news stories about them, nor by the condemnations issued by bishops and priests.— Chris Marquette (@ChrisMarquette_) July 18, 2019 Maybe it’s because I’m cold-hearted. But regardless of my personality flaws, I had to stop and ask myself,… Read more

July 19, 2019

With all this hype surrounding the Benedict Option, I decided to find out more about St. Benedict’s actual choice to start living a monastic life in a cave at Subiaco. Mind you, I’m already somewhat familiar with Benedictinism: I work at a high school run by Benedictine monks. Having spent time with the monks at prayer and reading The Rule, I feel like I’ve gotten a sense of what Benedict was really about. Nevertheless, I was curious to know out… Read more

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