Carried Away by Every Form of Rhetoric

You are being manipulated. Every day. The news doesn’t really tell you what’s happening, it tells you what you should think about what is happening. Every hour spent watching most mainstream news is like a catechesis class in moral preening and faux outrage, especially now in the age of Trump, where the sky is always falling.

Christians, more than any other group, should not be carried away by the swaying emotions of the wider world. We stand on the Rock. The world ebbs and flows with the tide, its moral positions and sense of outrage as malleable as the sand on the shore. But we stand on the Rock.

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Washington and the Greek Example

George Washington followed the Greek example of retiring his horses who had served him well, allowing at least two majestic steeds that he had ridden during the war to simply graze and do whatever they wanted.

Also following the Greek example, there is no evidence that Washington treated his elderly slaves with such magnanimity. He always felt trapped by his financial plight.

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Kaiser Wilhelm on Hitler and the Nazis

After World War One, Kaiser Wilhelm II, the deposed German Emperor, lived in exile in the Netherlands. He died in 1941, so he lived just long enough to witness the rise of Hitler and the outbreak of World War Two. In 1938 he gave an interview to an American correspondent and was asked what he thought of Hitler. His answer was interesting:

“There is a man alone, without family, without children, without God… He builds legions but he doesn’t build a nation. A nation is created by families, a religion, tradition: it is made up out of the hearts of mothers, the wisdom of fathers, the joy and the exuberance of children. [Hitler’s Germany would be]… an all-swallowing State, disdainful of human dignities and the ancient structure of our race, setting itself up in place of everything else. And the man who, alone, incorporates in himself this whole State, has neither a God to honour nor a dynasty to conserve, nor a past to consult.

For a few months I was inclined to believe in National Socialism. I thought of it as a necessary fever. And I was gratified to see that there were, associated with it for a time, some of the wisest and most outstanding Germans. But these, one by one, he has got rid of or even killed… This man could bring home victories to our people each year without bringing them glory… But of our Germany, which was a nation of poets and musicians and artists and soldiers, he has made a nation of hysterics and hermits, engulfed in a mob and led by a thousand liars or fanatics…”

HT: Daniel Hoffman via Mike Bull

The Ruins of the Tower of Babel

John Lennon’s Imagine: a song whose lyrics are picked straight from the ruins of the Tower of Babel, mangled into a corpse held together by a saccharine melody.

It is amazing to me how the sin of Babel is always relevant. C.S. Lewis was indeed insightful and prophetic when he wrote That Hideous Strength, in which the villains are foiled by Merlin bringing down the curse of Babel once again.