“As Christians we know that here we have no continuing city, that crowns roll in the dust and every earthly kingdom must sometime flounder, whereas we acknowledge a king men did not crown and cannot dethrone, as are citizens of a city of God they did not build and cannot destroy.” Malcolm Muggeridge, The End of Christendom, p. 52
“I came ultimately to be convinced that Christ was the answer. It was because in this world of fantasy in which my own occupation [journalist] has particularly involved me, I have found in Christ the only true alternative. The shadow in the cave [Plato’s cave] is like the media world of shadows. In contradistinction, Christ shows what life really is, and what our true destiny is. We escape from the cave. We emerge from the darkness and instead of shadows we have all around us the glory of God’s creation. Instead of darkness we have light; instead of despair, hope; instead of time and the clocks ticking inexorably on, eternity which never began and never ends and yet is sublimely now. What then is this reality of Christ, contrasting with all the fantasies whereby men seek to evade it, fantasies of the ego, of the appetites, of power or success, of the mind and the will, the reality valid when first lived and expounded by our Lord himself two thousand years ago?” Ibid, p. 53, 54
“It is simply this: by identifying ourselves with Christ, by absorbing ourselves in his teaching, by living out the drama of his life with him, including especially the passion, that powerhouse of love and creativity—by living with, by, and in him, we can be reborn to become new men and women in a new world.” Ibid., p. 54
Power Without Politics
Rod Dreher, The American Conservative, January/February 2013, p.7, 8
Living in a small Southern town, it’s easy to forget that politics exists. When I was working in Washington, D.C., as a journalist in the 1990s I would return here from time to time to visit my folks. It never failed to irritate me how disconnected everyone here was. Didn’t they know there had been a Republican Revolution and Speaker Gingrich was going to set everything aright? I was on Capitol Hill watching it all go down—and nobody cared to ask me what it was like. What was wrong with them? Now that I live in my hometown, I see this disconnect not as a vice but as a virtue. A limited virtue, and a risky one: living here, it’s easy to believe politics doesn’t matter much and to give oneself permission to disengage. When the only political talk you hear is the Hannity-Limbaugh line, it’s tempting to turn away and focus on private life.
This suits my temperament. I tend to be a dedine-and-fall pessimist. Perversely enough, little makes me happier than devouring a freshly baked Spenglerian meditation on how our civilization is staggering towards decrepitude. But then I think about a dinner I had a decade or so ago in my Brooklyn apartment. As usual, my guests and I were decrying the decline of Christianity. One of us, a Catholic priest, agreed that our gloom and doom was justified but accused us of lacking perspective. Continue reading