Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Salutary Neglect

Spring fever hit me hard this year.

That means, I'm a little behind on my reading.

The neglect has been salutary.

Here's the link to what others have to say about Chapter IX of Russell Kirk's The Roots of American Order.

This past Saturday DH and I tromped through some north Georgia woods which look much like they did during the early days of the colonies, at least according to the guidebook.

We covered 9.7 miles in 4 hours 25 minutes in the wilderness of this last of the Thirteen Colonies.

We Georgians love our General Oglethorpe whom Dr. Kirk considered an American gentleman ~
Christian soldier and friend to the unfortunate, admired by Samuel Johnson, conspicuous in London clubs, founder of the fortress-town of Savannah, full of fortitude and ability until he died at the age of ninety.
We Georgians can also claim bragging rights to the New World's Christianity in the Wesley Brothers:  John and Charles - planting seeds that erupted in the Great Awakening.

However, I am more of a Jonathan Edwards/George Whitefield kind of gal, if you know what I mean.

During this era, Americans demonstrated that they knew what to do, when and how.

They acted rightly.... even when no one was looking.

Now that's the root and order of true character.

Monday, April 09, 2012

The Roots of American Order Book Club

Chapter VIII - The Constitution of the Church and State

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Dear Cindy,

I am not ready for this week's book club *meeting* on Tuesday (4/10), and am posting this Lancaster/York bouquet with a request for a week's Spring Break.

Love, Dana

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Easter Collect

O God, who for our redemption didst give thine only-begotten Son to the death of the Cross,

and by his glorious resurrection hast delivered us from the power of our enemy;

Grant us so to die daily from sin, that we may evermore live with him in the joy of his resurrection;

through the same thy Son Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Poetry Month 2012

Someday I hope to create my own poetry anthology.  In the meantime, every April I try and highlight a few that I encountered throughout the  year.  

Here's the link to the ones for 2012...

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

The Roots of American Order Book Club
Chapter VII - The Reformers' Drum

If you have never read this book and think you dont have the time, please reconsider.  We're making it easier for you.  Read Cindy's applications as well as others.  Here's the link to our roundtable discussion.

Origins =  Humanism gained ground.  The primary representative of this new-found religion was a count, one Pico della Mirandola, who borrowed philosophical tenets from Plato, Christianity, and sorcery,  He wrote The Dignity of Man, a manifesto declaring man's god-like capabilities.  This philosophy found expression in churchmen like Erasmus in The Netherlands and Thomas More in England.  Five centuries later America's poet Ralph Waldo Emerson would echo Mirandola's sentiments. 

Reformers = Kirk diplomatically explains that both Protestants (Luther's 95 Theses) and Catholics (Council of Trent) reacted to the excesses of the Renaissance culture which exalted man's egoism (humanism).  Renaissance concupiscence, power politics, and pagan worldview contrasted with the Reformation's Christian morality, principles of justice and freedom, and Biblical worldview.  What started as debates among theologians became a forever breach in Christendom.

Divine Comedy  = makes me think of the Lord, our God, laughing as in Psalm 2 at all this earthly turmoil.  In fact, Kirk wants us to recognize Dante Alighieri, a most imaginative poet.  That Divine Comedy joined scholastic philosophy and medieval imagery synthesizing knowledge and belief.  I have never read this great poem, but aim to acquire not only John Ciardi's translation but also Anthony Esolen's.

Ecclesiastical Eruptions = Knotty questions starting with Mirandola's 900, spurred by Luther's Bondage of the Will, and systematized by Calvin's Institutes effected the break from The Pope, most notably in King Henry VIII's boldness and the establishment of The Church of England.  This seems to be the beginning of today's myriad of Christian denominations.

Renegade Churchmen = Kirk gives us Richard Hooker and John Knox, both fascinating minds who fathered national churches, The Church of England and the Church of Scotland, respectively.  Hooker, more moderate, was the proponent of "via media" (a throwback to Aristole's "golden mean") which characteristic is very English to us Americans.  Knox, a more forceful personality, preached incessantly against the wickedness of the Church (Kingly) Establishment in favor of Biblical Authority.  

Ever interested in history, I am truly appreciating Dr. Kirk's even-handed survey. It so explains me, as I was reared Anglican (I love, love, the Book of  Common Prayer) and became Presbyterian (The Westminster Confession of Faith answered more questions than The 39 Articles) at age twenty.  Our family roots are Scotch-Irish.  We've been Americans since the War for Independence.   

Marching to that different drum,  it's gonna be hard to uproot me.

Added later ~ 
In honor of National Poetry Month, here is a Link to a 16th century poet who marched to a different drum and made a difference:  Marguerite de Navarre

Monday, April 02, 2012

The Roots of American Order
 Chapter VII Favorite Quote

Rather, colonial America generally shared the Reformers' detestation of Renaissance notions and ways.

The early Renaissance they rejected as the blending of a resurrection of licentious paganism with a corrupted Catholicism.  page 228

What commenced as a debate about theological questions and church discipline soon made an open breach in Christendom; and there followed a century and a half of devastation, the Wars of Religion, Catholic against Protestant, and one Protestant sect against another.

In the name of the Son of Man, the Redeemer, zealots took the sword against other Christians, illustrating practically the Christian dogma that all men are sinners.

Yet out of that long agony of religious fanaticism (mingled with national political rivalries, class warfare, and ruthless private ambitions) emerged the religious pluralism and toleration of the United States.  page 232

Illustration Information ~
Portrait of Leo X
by Raphael
Oil on Wood, 61 in x 47 in