Unquenchable Cravings

Many waters cannot quench charity, neither can the floods drown it: If a man should give all the substance of his house for love, He shall despise it as nothing. Canticle of Canticles 8:7 Friday being the day of Our Lord’s Passion, it is good to commemorate it not only by abstaining from meat, orContinue reading “Unquenchable Cravings”

Public Opinion & Propaganda

In this seminal essay, Robert Nisbet explains how our contemporary obsession with popular opinion constitutes a deadly distortion of the logic of genuine republican government. Though good government rests on the consent of the governed, and public policy ought to be based on a refinement of public views, this does not mean that rulers oughtContinue reading “Public Opinion & Propaganda”

Barbarity Vanquished

In this marvelous cantata, Barbara, dira, effera, Jan Dismas Zelenka explores the roots of Easter joy in the horror of our Lord’s Passion: Though the sound here is a bit muffled, the power of this performance by Delphine Galou and Collegium 1704 cannot be impeded. That befits the message conveyed: that the barbarity of man,Continue reading “Barbarity Vanquished”

Fruitful Ghostly Food

Our most dear Savior Christ, which, after the finishing of the old Paschal sacrifice, hast instituted the new sacrament of thine own body and blood for a memorial of thy bitter Passion, give us such true faith therein and such fervent devotion thereto, that our souls may take fruitful ghostly food thereby. St. Thomas MoreContinue reading “Fruitful Ghostly Food”

O Lord, Our Lord!

The opening of Bach’s Johannes-Passion plunges us into the midst of Christ’s violent death. The swirling strings and plaintive winds establish an air of helpless distress. The first word, “Herr!” (Lord!), is a cry for help. Its repetition and extension into the slightly longer “O Lord, our Lord!” only accentuates the state of extreme crisis.Continue reading “O Lord, Our Lord!”

Only Jesus

For this is the will of God, your sanctification. 1 Thessalonians 4:3 And the disciples hearing, fell upon their face, and were very much afraid. Matthew 17:6 In the Transfiguration, Peter, James, and John saw their Lord in his undisguised sanctity. As he spoke familiarly to Moses and Elias (long since departed from this mortalContinue reading “Only Jesus”

Help and Consolation

Thou true God and son of David, who already from eternity and from afar have seen intimately my heartache and bodily pain: have mercy on me! And let thy miraculous hand, that has turned aside so much evil, act for me likewise as help and consolation. Du wahrer Gott, by J. S. Bach (Music) FromContinue reading “Help and Consolation”

Asking God and Intellect to Rule

“One who asks law to rule,” Aristotle observes, “seems to be asking god and intellect alone to rule, while one who asks man adds the beast.” By god, Aristotle means the supreme intellect, whose superiority consists partly in not relying on a limited supply of brain cells, and partly in being free of the passionsContinue reading “Asking God and Intellect to Rule”