11.23.2009

Two Reasons Not-To-Hate Catholicism

I don't love the Catholic church or the Pope, but I don't dislike or distrust them as much as some people. Here's an interesting article. Benedict says, "Beauty ... can become a path toward the transcendent, toward the ultimate Mystery, toward God." And I like that for two reasons: #1) it reminds us that there is a very real distinction between books like Moby-Dick and The House on Mango Street. In other words, some art is intended very distinctly to influence readers in a particularly "spiritual" way. As Uncle Walt says in "Leaves of Grass":
Do you guess I have some intricate purpose? / Well I have, for the Fourth-month showers have, and the mica on the side of a rock has.
I know some people will be uncomfortable with this distinction, but I think it's real. Sure, there are some ambiguous cases where it's not clear whether the art is propaganda or divine-art... but, for me, it's a worthwhile distinction. Flannery O'Connor's motivation is much different from Sinclair Lewis', and with the Pope, I'd like to see more O'Connors up around these parts.

And #2: it reminds us that "God" should be understood as Mystery, as Ultimate Mystery... I like that: U.M. Ummm... Ummmm... Ummmmmm....

3 comments:

fenhopper said...

don't you know that the pope is the main force behind the dangerous new world order?

the SDAs have it all figured out.

Casey said...

Bah! -- hahaaaaa. Awesome website. Did you see Chris Matthews interview that Bishop of Providence tonight about abortion law? Interesting conversation, actually.

How would I find out what the law was under the Holy Roman Empire in, say, 700 A.D., concerning abortion? I'm guessing it would've been illegal... but where could I find out what the punishment would be?

Wishydig said...

check the republican platform.