14 November 2015
Nature abhors a vacuum. When Christendom won the Battle of Lepanto, the hands of the peasantry clutched rosaries. I do not see how a vacuum can withstand the Islamic onslaught.
Posted by Fr John Hunwicke at 14:07
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Speaking of vacuums, you may not have noticed that the US President appears to have made an obvious and laudatory reference to the French Revolution in his remarks. I don't think I'm just imagining the connection:
"Paris itself represents the timeless values of human progress. Those who think that they can terrorize the people of France or the values that they stand for are wrong."
That's pretty scary, and gets very much to the heart of the spiritual vacuum that is modernity. It's certainly very apparent in American public life these days.
It can withstand it temporarily, the same way Rome withstood barbarians for hundreds of years before falling: a merciless authoritarian state. It seems with contemporary culture and people we will have to see every sort of depravity and failure before people will bother changing themselves.
I fear Father that the same could be said of Christendom too.
WE need to do something but what?
Liberty, equality and fraternity is thin gruel against the soldiers of Allah.
I see that Elena Chudinova's book The Mosque of Notre Dame, is now available in English from Remnant Press. And then there is Guillaume Faye...
ABS was in that beautiful city less than a month ago and neither rage or tears could be held back.
Lord have mercy.
ABS is prolly the onliest one to think this way but even though it is routine to call such men cowards, it does not seem the act of a coward to do what those terrorists did; rather, it is cowardice to drop bombs on men from 1000s of feet in the air or to blow-up others using drones.
Chalmers Johnson describes such terrorism as blowback and ABS thinks he is onto something with that description for ABS is the same age as Israel and when he was coming of age, we had no such terrorism that he remembers but the involvement of the west in the M.E. (at least since the CIA removed the democratically elected Pres of Iran from power and installed on the Peacock Throne that pathetic puppet who did our bidding and tortured his own people) has increased terrorism directed at the west.
Who knows what the answer is but shouldn't everyone know that America's presence there (have you every googled where are bases are in the M.E.?) has not led to an increase in the tranquillity of order?
I wish I felt at least people would wake up and realize the problem with importing refugees into your country is exactly this. The only way to avoid it or stem it is not to allow it, but too many people are more committed to political correctness than they are even to survival.
Meanwhile the bishops are obsessing over how to bring more immigrants here, and no one in the Church recognizes at all what is ultimately going to happen. Pope Francis gave immense support to President Obama during his recent tour, on bringing more immigrants to our already over-burdened land. Just another example of the bishops being entirely out of touch with reality and the people.
Contemplating, during my flight to Malta today, what I might say on this subject upon my return to parochial duties in a week's time (the Solemnity of Christ the King, perhaps appropriately), I had already decided to begin with the same four-word sentence.
I would never presume to say that "great minds think alike", but maybe occasionally even lesser ones may work along the same lines as greater.
Thank God the Rosary fills out for the vacuous human mind, not least our often wayward attention span - or strife-loving and soul-killing contentions.
Of greater importance, dear Father John, if this is not impertinent (given the context); do we have any reports (even early reports of photographs and witnesses et al to be posted on line) from the first fruits - among so many other little firsts - that is, the conferral of Minor Orders at Holy Rood?
God's grace is poured out mightily, and Our Lady's prayers fruitful indeed, even amid our other more worldly concerns, and beyond all merely reasonable expectation; six years only, and opposition already has only the ability to mither, no long the real hope to stay or end its beginning, growth and blossoming under Our Lady of Walsinham, indeed its fruitfulness - a Seraphic Victory of Rosary-sized proportions .. however small these things may seem in the eyes of the world.
@mark wauck: One cannot help wondering whether Obama has ever heard of that great Parisian value-fest, the Reign of Terror?
Modernity has a heart every bit as historically ignorant as it is spiritually vacuous.
When I was at school and studying 19th century European History, something called the Balance of Power was drilled into us.
The deaths of these innocent people is perfectly appalling, of course, but when I contemplate the rise and rise of Euro/American secular statism it gives me some comfort to think that Islamic aggression on one hand and Putin’s thugs on the other, are out there as a counterweight to Obama and Mrs Merkel. Am I alone? Am I wrong?
We are at war Father, real war, bullets, bombs, downed aircraft, rockets, just as our Middle East Fellow-Christians have had to suffer.
Two things might help us. The Secular world are just beginning to understand Islam. A bit of a shock for them, and also I suspect the Christian Church in the USA, just as they have bailed us out before, will do so again.
But it is going to be a close run thing!
Paris represents "the timeless values of human progress?" Sigh. When will violent internationalist revolutionaries, of all sects, finally just go away and stop bothering people who are just trying to live their lives?
@William: one of my brothers, the one who drew my attention to that passage (I do have a life--I don't sit around perusing the Obama's press statements!), raised that same objection. My response is that I think he was aware of the connection to a previous terror and that he probably fantasizes about playing Robespierre to his domestic enemies. Certainly he shows far more hostility to them than to ISIS.
On the post re those who hate Ratzinger I offered some criticisms of aspects of Ratzinger's thought. It may be appropriate, therefore, to point out with respect to events in France that Benedict's address at Regensburg highlighted some of the best aspects of his thought. IMO, that address was widely misunderstood, including by the then Cardinal Bergoglio (Wikipedia includes a link to a Telegraph article). Yes, I know a lot of people have said Benedict was misunderstood, but usually they themselves have misunderstood his perhaps rather subtle point. What Benedict does in that address is to compare the shortcomings of orthodox Islamic thought to a common strand of Catholic thought called voluntarism (usually associated with Bl John Duns Scotus). Voluntarism is the notion that good is good and bad is bad not because of the nature of the acts but merely because of God's say-so. That is, in fact, orthodox Islamic thought. It isn't orthodox Catholic thought, but the philosophical principles underlying were widespread in late Medieval Catholic thought and were passed on to much of Protestant thought (as Louis Bouyer has pointed out in The Spirit and Forms of Protestantism). IOW, Benedict was suggesting that this common philosophical error might serve as a basis for dialogue between Islam and the Church. Sadly, this worthwhile point was utterly lost on most of the secular world, as well as on Cardinal Bergoglio.
May I add that this is one of the frustrating things for me about Ratzinger's thought: its combination of acute insight with what I can only describe as obstinate resistance to certain aspects (mostly those which he refers to as "scholastic") of Catholic tradition--aspects which would clear up many of the problems that he so acutely points out.
Duns Scotus was always considered a bit dodgy, at least in my Apologetics classes back in the late forties and that was in the land of Scotus!
@Jacobi: Scotus does remain the more or less official theologian of the Franciscans. Interestingly, since V2 he has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity--at least in Academe. I'm not sure how genuine that renewed interest is, or if it's simply that his writings offer fertile new ground for dissertations. I had reason to learn a few years ago that his partisans can be quite vocal, not to say vociferous, quick to point out that their champion IS a Blessed and that his views on the Immaculate Conception won out over the likes of Aquinas and Bonaventure. Those are some of the reasons, along with the more usual ones, that I perked up when Benedict took out after Scotus at Regensburg and followed that up with a decidedly lukewarm evaluation of Scotus (especially re his ideas on freedom and the will) at a general audience (7/7/10).
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