Archive for August, 2017

The Blurring of Logical, Natural Distinctions

The mind naturally distinguishes between the true and the false, recognizing the difference between the real and some substitute or imitation for the authentic, between the true and the ersatz, the natural and the artificial. So many errors of judgment and foolish and immoral decisions begin by the failure to recognize these logical, inherent distinctions that form the structure of reality. For example, subtle but vital distinctions separate appearance from reality: love from...

Is it a sin to be judgmental?

By Fr. Basil Cole, O.P.

In the Gospel of Luke, Jesus is quoted as saying: “Do not judge, and you will not be judged; do not condemn and will not be condemned.” Is our Lord demanding that his followers become naive? And while he is not a “Thomist” who makes distinctions but a divine-human who expressed himself with a Semitic mind frame of reference, further distinctions have to be made in light of revelation to understand the Lord correctly.

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Iconoclasm in Flannery O’Connor’s “Parker’s Back”

One of the virulent attacks on Catholic and Orthodox churches in the past has assumed the form of “image-smashing,” the literal meaning of the Greek word iconoclasm. Eamon Duffy’s book on this subject entitled The Stripping of the Altars explains how the Protestant Revolt in England denuded churches of statues, paintings, stained glass windows, vestments, and every vestige of ornamental beauty that adorned churches to glorify God and express the beauty of holiness....

Who Are the Barbarians?

The word ‘barbarian’ originated in ancient Greece. The barbarian (bàrbaros) was someone who spoke in a non-Greek language and, therefore, was unintelligible to the Greek ear. The term was specifically directed to Persians, Egyptians, Medes and Phoenicians. It was as though these so-called barbarians were simply uttering “bar-bar-bar”. Consequently, the barbarians were incoherent “babblers”. Late in the Roman Empire, the term applied to those who lacked Greek or Roman traditions, specifically to Goths,...

“There but for the grace of God, Go I”

By Catherine Mendenhall-Baugh

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression or maybe even said it yourself after avoiding a near misstep from a catastrophe or frightening experience; “There, but for the grace of God, go I.” When saying it, you have acknowledged outside factors like “the grace of God” having just played a role in avoiding a similar fate or catastrophic event as that of someone not as fortunate.

Initially, this phrase was thought to be credited to a...