Having reduced my twitter account to a bot that post links to this blog, I have decided to post a list of links here from time to time. I am calling the series “Links R & C,” because I shall be posting the links under two headings: “Recent” and “Classic.” Blogging is an ephemeral medium, but certain blogposts of long past years have caught like burrs in the trouser-legs of my memory, and I think it worth while to re-read them from time to time.
Eugene Vodolazkin, The New Middle Ages, First Things. An amusing essay by a Russian novelist in which he argues that post-modern literary culture is more akin to the manuscript culture of the Middle Ages than the print culture of modernity.
James Chastek, Dialogue on Religion and Laïcité, Just Thomism. The ever fresh and philosophical Chastek on the paradox of cordoning off religion out of fear of death.
Idem, The critique of contemporary conservativism, ibidem. The most memorable point is #2 on the vacuity of the term “big government.”
Michael Gilleland, Disloyalty, Laudator Temporis Acti. «To the average pagan their refusal to burn a few grains of incense on the Emperor’s birthday must have appeared as a deliberate and insolent expression of disloyalty, rather like refusing to stand up when the national anthem is played.»
P.J. Smith, We’re back on the train, Semiduplex. Smith’s reflections on the Holy Father’s recent endorsement of an Argentine implementation of Amoris Laetitia. Semiduplex is solid as always, though I think he is a bit too harsh on St. John Paul II’s letter to Cardinal Baum on how one can intend not to fall into a certain sin again while expecting that one will. This is certainly often the case with habitual sins (eg. gluttony and drunkenness). Of course, one ought to avoid the near occasion of sin, but the supposition here is that there are very serious reasons for not extricating oneself from the occasion. This does, of course, show that those reasons must be very strong indeed, if they are to justify staying in a situation so dangerous to one’s immortal soul. Update: Smith has clarified his position.
Ronaldo as a Theologian, Ludorum Pulcherrimus Football. Over at my new soccer blog I reflect on the Brazilian Ronaldo’s Augustinian understanding of the Pauline principle that “in everything God works for the good of those who love Him.”
2011: Berenike, Lublin, philosophy and shoes, Laodicea. Berenike was a true master of the blog form. It is hardly fair to regret that she gave up blogging to devote herself to higher things, but she has certainly been missed. This post had everything: odd, endearing autobiographical detail; Lucky Jim style put-downs of great academic philosophers; and even a little philosophy!
2010: J. Nordlinger, Salzburg Souvenirs, National Review. Even people who are wrong about most everything can write good blogposts about the beauties of Salzburg.
2011: James Chastek, The death wish in the contemporary west, Just Thomism. My all-time favorite Chastek post.