The Venerable Bede: Following the Medieval Christian Footpath

For if history records good things of good men, the thoughtful hearer is encouraged to imitate what is good: or if it records evil of wicked men, the devout, religious listener or reader is encouraged to avoid all that is sinful and perverse and to follow what he knows to be good and pleasing to […]

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Thomas Aquinas: Understanding Evil

At some point, most of us will go through a crisis of belief and wonder if there is a God. If God exists, why doesn’t He prevent evil? Christians recite all of the stock replies and appropriate Bible verses to ease the pain in a struggling friend’s mind and heart. We are brave in our […]

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What Makes Us Human – Observations on Blade Runner

How can it not know what it is? — Rick Deckard, Blade Runner   That can be a question or a declaration put forth by Deckard, a Blade Runner hired to kill rogue replicants in the cinematic dystopian classic, Blade Runner. The film demands a deep dig into our personal definition of what it is […]

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Gender, Not Sex: Presentation of Gender Roles in Lewis’s The Ransom Trilogy

Having abused and misconstrued the word “gender,” we moderns have succeeded in obscuring its meaning entirely. Gender can apply to a quality that we are born with, or more recently, an attribute we can choose — a recent report gives us seventy-one gender options and counting.[1]  Gender and sex are often used interchangeably, blurring the […]

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A Passage to Something Better

It is mainly concerned with Death, and Immortality. J.R.R. Tolkien, commenting on The Lord of the Rings in a letter, October 14, 1958. Here are beauties which pierce like swords or burn like cold iron; here is a book that will break your heart. C.S. Lewis, Image and Imagination   Death. The mere sound of […]

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Finishing Well

There was once a little man called Niggle, who had a long journey to make. “Leaf by Niggle,” J.R.R. Tolkien J.R.R. Tolkien is a master storyteller, especially when writing tales that feature a lengthy and difficult journey. In The Hobbit, we meet Bilbo and a party of thirteen dwarves who set off to defeat Smaug […]

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Hope in Dystopia

“It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” George Orwell, 1984   Why is the dystopian theme in literature consistently popular? Let’s be honest — it’s not the less-than-cheerful storyline, the endless stream of desperation, struggle against oppression, and jarring finish. The very words leave us off balance. Yet, […]

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In the Trenches

Welcome to our Brave New World where we live in a society of anger, autonomy, and division: beauty wrung out and replaced by a meme. More than ever, we are searching for meaning and significance in our daily lives. Finding our place (and we all have one) is a challenge even for adults who have […]

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Awe

Edmund Spenser [1552/1553 – 1599] invented the Spenserian stanza for his book, The Fairie Queen. He filled his beautiful, allegorical work with characters that inspire the reader’s imagination — knights, courageous women, magical creatures, and a dragon. I’ve chosen Spenser’s poetic rhyme scheme to inspire the reader to pause and truly soak in the magic […]

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The Power in Pain

I have been here before. This grief that crushes my soul like a black hole. I dream that I’m clawing at slippery, black walls as I slide farther down…to what? No bottom, because the grief is in layers, just like the layers of dark events of the past few months. Everything that has been impending […]

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