sábado, 26 de noviembre de 2016

The Everlasting Caesar: Why There Will Not Be a Post-Secular Future

Essays of the Week

by George Stanciu
Patriotism—the love of place, countrymen, and local traditions—lasted for millennia, until replaced by nationalism, which first appeared in seventeenth-century England. Nationalism is so prevalent in Modernity that we believe it is a natural outgrowth of tribal life, instead of an invention of Western Europe that was exported to the rest of the world. Made in the image of the Nation-State, citizens obtain their rights not from God or nature but from their nation. Unlike medieval men and women, who thought of themselves as Christians, subjects of a king or lord, and members of a village community, Western men and women in the twentieth-first century, with few exceptions, think of themselves as citizens of a nation, as Englishmen, Americans, Germans, Belgians, Serbs, or some other invented group. They speak of my country and feel pride or shame in their country’s actions... [MORE]

by Bradley J. Birzer
Whatever successes the Founders had, however, one grand mistake has hampered the effectiveness of the American republic to resist the tyranny of democratic sentiments and democratic despotism as it emerged in the nineteenth and, then, the twentieth centuries. In particular, the Founders failed to restrict the executive and prevent it from becoming the very tyranny they opposed in the British monarch. Indeed, our president today is far more powerful than George III ever imagined himself to be. The presidency is, simply put, out of control, both in the actual workings of the executive branch and in the minds of its adherents among the populace. More worrisome, though, is that the American people—conservative, liberal, and otherwise—have come to see the president as the embodiment of their hopes, their dreams, and their nightmares. Far more worrisome, this seems to have become the default position—a poor habit, but one now deeply rooted in the American psyche... [MORE]

by G.M. Curtis and Lenore T. Ealy
Over the years one of the most satisfying ways people have found to travel back is to bypass historians and read what the people who came before us left for us to read. One of the most compelling sources has been personal letters, particularly collections that have concentrations on specific time periods. It is rare and endlessly gratifying to have a collection of letters of two friends.  Something quite special can happen as one takes up this conversation. Despite the passage of time, even the modern reader can begin to join in as a party to this distant conversation. This reader slowly but surely becomes attached to the letter writers in such a way that gradually they lose the trappings of strangers in some history book and become real, immediate. Intellectually and emotionally the modern reader begins to walk in a different world. The reader begins to understand what gave these people joy; what caused them to weep; who were their friends and enemies; what were their political and constitutional convictions; and how they came to understand... [MORE]

by Joseph Pearce
What we are witnessing is only the latest chapter in the ongoing war between the culture of life and the culture of death. Insofar as the advocates of infanticide were defeated in the US election, the culture of life won a historic victory. It is, however, the winning of one battle in a very long war. It is not the winning of the war and it is dangerous to act as though it were. Furthermore, should the war against secularism eventually be won, the secularism thus defeated will morph into another manifestation of the secularist spirit. The truth is that the spirit of the world, the secular, cannot be defeated, except in the hearts of individuals, and even then it can be defeated only by the grace of God. Caesar, like the poor, is always with us and it’s naïve to believe that he can be overthrown. If we kill one Caesar, he is replaced by another in his own image. If one Caesar, by the grace of God, is converted, he will be succeeded by a new Caesar who will restore the status quo ante... [MORE]

by Peter Kalkavage
Although music transcends the world of things, it is also deeply connected with that world. The four parts of a string quartet or chorus capture in symbolic form the four natural grades of the will’s self-objectification. The bass part is the analogue of inorganic nature, the tenor and alto parts of plant and animal, respectively. As for the soprano or melody Schopenhauer writes: “in the melody, in the high singing, principal voice, leading the whole and progressing with unrestrained freedom, in the uninterrupted significant connexion of one thought from beginning to end, and expressing a whole, I recognize the highest grade of the will’s objectification, the intellectual life and endeavour of man.” Melody, the mythos and symbol of human life, “relates the story of the intellectually enlightened will, the copy or impression whereof in actual life is the series of its deeds.” Even death finds its correlate in the world of tones. Death in music occurs in modulation, where a key-change “entirely abolishes the connection with what went before.”  To sum up, there is nothing in the natural world, or in the inner and outer life of man, that does not find its counterpart in the all-embracing realm of tones. Music as symbol is the whole of all things...  [MORE]

Support The Imaginative Conservative

No hay comentarios:

Publicar un comentario