“A parallel, from a different sphere, would be turkey and plum pudding on Christmas day; no one is surprised at the menu, but every one realizes it is not ordinary fare. Another parallel would be the language of a liturgy. Regular church-goers are not surprised by the service — indeed, they know a good deal of it by rote; but it is a language apart. Epic diction, Christmas fare, and the liturgy, are all examples of ritual — that is, of something set deliberately apart from daily usage, but wholly familiar within its own sphere…. Those who dislike ritual in general — ritual in any and every department of life — may be asked most earnestly to reconsider the question. It is a pattern imposed on the mere flux of our feelings by reason and will, which renders pleasures less fugitive and griefs more endurable, which hands over to the power of wise custom the task (to which the individual and his moods are so inadequate) of being festive or sober, gay or reverent, when we choose to be, and not at the bidding of chance.” — C.S. Lewis, from A Preface to Paradise Lost
Help Syrian RefugeesDonate to the International Rescue Committee's efforts to assist Syrian refugees. The International Rescue Committee has a four-star rating from Charity Navigator.
donating is lovingPlease donate to help support this blog and its curious mission of faith, doubt, speculation, and wonder.
- Follow liturgical on WordPress.com
Search this site
Problem or Mystery?A problem is something which I meet, which I find completely before me, but which I can therefore lay siege to and reduce. But a mystery is something in which I am myself involved, and it can therefore only be thought of as a sphere where the distinction between what is in me and what is before me loses its meaning and initial validity. -- Gabriel Marcel
Our Ways of Understanding"Our ways of understanding have been collective, beginning with the stories that we told each other around the fire when we lived in caves. Our ways today are still collective, including literature, history, art, music, religion, and science." - Freeman Dyson
Follow on Twitter
"Referee won't blow the whistle / God is good but will he listen?" -- U2
Share & Bookmark
- "When someone opposes me, he arouses my attention, not my anger. I go to meet a man who contradicts me, who instructs me. The cause of truth should be the common cause of both." -- Montaigne
- "If your anger decreases with time, you did injustice; if it increases, you suffered injustice." -- Nassim Nicholas Taleb
- "And the missionaries, they tell us we will be left behind. / Been left behind a thousand times, a thousand times." -- Arcade Fire
Incapable of doubt, incapable of faithThe majority of mankind is lazy-minded, incurious, absorbed in vanities, and tepid in emotion, and is therefore incapable of either much doubt or much faith. -- T.S. Eliot, Introduction (1931), Pascal's "Pensees"
Wittgenstein on Kierkegaard
"Kierkegaard was by far the most profound thinker of the[nineteenth] century. Kierkegaard was a saint." - Ludwig Wittgenstein, to his friend Maurice Drury.
Read Wittgenstein and Kierkegaard: Religion, Individuality, and Philosophical Method by Charles L. Creegan free online.
- Every Day Awe: Stacy Murison on Brian Doyle November 29, 2016
- Auden Explains Poetry, Propaganda, And Reporting May 20, 2016
- Watch: Battle of the Hamlets with Benedict Cumberbatch, David Tennant, Prince Charles ETC April 25, 2016
- Poem of the Day: The End and the Beginning August 21, 2018After every war someone has to clean up. Things won’t straighten themselves up, after all. Someone has to push the rubble to the side of the road, so the corpse-filled wagons can pass. Someone has to get mired in scum and ashes, sofa springs, splintered glass, and bloody rags. Someone has to drag in a girder to prop up a wall. Someone has to glaze a window, […]Wisława Szymborska
- Poem of the Day: The End and the Beginning August 21, 2018
- Poem of the Day: On Wanting to Tell [ ] about a Girl Eating Fish Eyes August 21, 2018By Mary Szybist
- Poem of the Day: On Wanting to Tell [ ] about a Girl Eating Fish Eyes August 21, 2018
- The Concept of Evil August 22, 2018[Revised entry by Todd Calder on August 21, 2018. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] Since World War II, moral, political, and legal philosophers have become increasingly interested in the concept of evil. This interest has been partly motivated by ascriptions of 'evil' by laymen, social scientists, journalists, and politicians as they try to und […]Todd Calder
- Free Will August 22, 2018[Revised entry by Timothy O'Connor and Christopher Franklin on August 21, 2018. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] The term "free will" has emerged over the past two millennia as the canonical designator for a significant kind of control over one's actions. Questions concerning the nature and existence of this kind of control (e.g., doe […]Timothy O'Connor and Christopher Franklin
- The Concept of Evil August 22, 2018
- An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.
- Topple the statues of your oppressors. August 21, 2018Share and Enjoy: The post Topple the statues of your oppressors. appeared first on Indexed.Jessica Hagy
- Topple the statues of your oppressors. August 21, 2018
Liturgy For The PeopleThe liturgy is essentially not the religion of the cultured, but the religion of the people. If the people are rightly instructed, and the liturgy is properly carried out, they display a simple and profound understanding of it. For the people do not analyze concepts, but contemplate. The people possess that inner integrity of being which corresponds perfectly with the symbolism of the liturgical language, imagery, action and ornaments. The cultured man has first of all to accustom himself to this attitude; but to the people it has always been inconceivable that religion should express itself by abstract ideas and logical developments, and not by being and action, by imagery and ritual. --Romano Guardini, "The Awakening of the Church in the Soul"
- Auden Explains Poetry, Propaganda, And Reporting
- New books: What Martin Luther thought about prayer beads
- Quiz: Which early Church Father are you?
- George Orwell's letter to Malcolm Muggeridge
- C.S. Lewis Drank Three Pints of Beer in The Morning -- A Letter From Tolkien
- How can you know if a Buddhist amulet has been blessed? The Buddhist amulet market crashes in Thailand
- How Martin Luther's translation of the Bible influenced the German language
- Who are you? Are you a self? (Descartes v. Kierkegaard)
- Christopher Hitchens on the soul -- and love
Arts and humansArt is the signature of man. -G.K. Chesterton
Posts I Like
The Anguished QuestionIf you really enquire about God, not with mere curiosity, not, as it were, like a spiritual stamp collector, but as an anxious seeker, distressed in heart, anguished by the possibility that God might not exist and hence all life be vanity and one great madness -- if you ask in such a mood as the man who asks the doctor, "Tell me, will my wife live or will she die?"-- if you ask thus about God, then you know already that God exists; the anguished question bears witness that you know. -- Emil Brunner, "Our Faith"