7 Takes of Unhappiness

7 Takes of Unhappiness March 26, 2021

One Last Selfie With A Good And Faithful Dog

One

I did not intend to take a whole week off of blogging, nor skip the preventing grace podcast or anything. The sudden death of our favorite dog caught us totally off guard. In more ordinary times, I think I would still have been horrified and grieved but generally able to carry on. This hasn’t been ordinary time for quite a long while, however, chiefly because I keep being surprised that God would keep striking me (and everyone) down. At some point maybe I’ll be able to write something about our lovely dog–Ashurbanipal, Ash for short–but not right now. Posie–the remaining dog (short for Poseidon)–now elevated to “Good Dog” and favored dog status, is so woebegone that though he still tries to growl at all his enemies, his heart isn’t in it.

Two

That being so, I missed the launch day of this lovely book, in which I have a chapter on African Traditional Religion. The bad thing is, I can’t find my own copy because I think someone took it to read, but I can’t remember who. It’s a great book–stuffed with interesting and useful information. And I think on Christian Book it is a very reasonable price.

Three

Ralinda, Jady, and I girded up our loins for a final go at Jesus and John Wayne. We did not get even close to talking about everything in the book, but we can’t do this anymore. It’s too demoralizing. On the plus side, all the podcasting helped me to actually face my review, so that should be available to you all soon.

Four

Strangely, I did have a moment to lie around reading and found this to be very interesting and instructive. It’s long but worth it. McWhorter concludes this way:

But the Elect analysis must see racism, and thus comes Ibram Kendi’s “idea” that our whole metric for evaluating scholarly success must be overturned in favor of pretending that black kids should be measured as smart on the basis of “desire to know.” For all of the warmth that notion may seem to have in being labelled as antiracism, it leaves black kids nowhere. That vision of antiracism means no George Washington Carver, whose miracles with the peanut were not driven by idle curiosity or some kind of alternate science of the streets. He worked within the Euro-American paradigm. The later, snazzy-looking little View-Master of our memories was designed by a black man, Charles Harrison. He used the same skills as white designers of his time. Savory black spontaneity, in-touch-ness, and what Kendi airily describes as “desire to know” would have done nothing to help him.

Five

The thing–just to pick up the thought from McWhorter, especially as I have had to endure so much of Du Mez–that I find so ridiculous, is that of course there is racism and misogyny everywhere, but we’re not supposed to see it where it really exists, we’re supposed to see and account for it in places where it isn’t. It’s like the sinner shouting at God that she–or even he–is not really a sinner, but that all those other people are. I feel like I’ve read that somewhere before…oh! I remember, it’s that pithy little scene that Jesus drew between those two people in the temple, and one of them literally saying, “I thank God that I am not like that guy over there.” It’s not a good look.

Six

McWhorter calls this new religion “Electism.” I don’t disagree with him at all that it is a new religion, but I don’t know about the word Elect, except in so far as the woke person elects himself, or herself, to be in it, to be special and chosen, and not like “those others.” Whereas the whole point of election in Christianity is that God does the work, we don’t do it ourselves. The elect are the most humble and lowly, beating their breasts, cast down about their own sins most of all. You can tell that Woke Election is bad because it is so keen to take specks out of other people’s eyes. It is an inverted, “anti-election,” where “God” doesn’t rescue the sinner out of unrighteousness, but the “righteous” separates herself from the “ungodly” and doesn’t even need saving, as she is already very good.

Seven

Well, I have to go do more things. Mercifully, I don’t have to read Jesus and John Wayne anymore, but can read other lots more interesting books, like some Grace Livingston Hill, which I will spend the weekend reading aloud for the benefit and instruction of all my dear family. And I am a long way into The Eustace Diamonds, which is brilliant. I was afraid to read it, knowing it would be stressful, and it is, but as a palate cleanser to the stupidities of the day, it is incomparable.

Have a nice day and go check out more takes!

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