Saturday, March 17, 2007

Breathing Together

COMING TO CONSCIOUSNESS in the wake of some catastrophe, a man gropes his way amidst the rubble and the fallout. His memory has been disrupted and his senses impaired by a recent, unrecollected trauma; he recognises, hears, sees little with any clarity. Guided, though, by some profound instinct, and sustained by unreasonable hope, as he stumbles he becomes aware by degrees of the presence of fellow human beings. Each stops and listens; each hears the breathing of the others. Are there two – or three? Hands are extended in the darkness, and the slow, painful journey continues. None asks, nor does it occur to him to ask, where the others are bound; each has recognised the same instinct, the same hope in his fellows.

As their journey advances and their solidarity develops the man admires and grows to rely upon this one’s sharper eyes, that one’s clearer head; one’s strong arm, or strong sense of structure to discern which masonry, seemingly substantial, will shelter their passage or crumble at the touch; another’s kindness and calm. After a seeming eternity of struggle during which the instinct has appeared to fail, the hope to flicker and the solidarity to dissipate amidst inevitable quarrels, desertions and defeats, the little company (no longer so little now) finds itself on open, rising ground. The air has cleared and suddenly there below them, in sharp relief, is their city - their patria – her hills, her river; the broken towers and shattered ramparts; the great, half-ruined dome.

Reconstructing Roman Catholicism
It has been my contention for some time now that what is going on in the Roman Catholic Church is not reform but destruction...

Such criticisms against this are not new, and they are formulated by a small minority in the Church known as traditionalists. Often, however, this so-called traditionalist rhetoric is embedded in its own positivist and authoritarian narratives of what the past was like and how the present should be. It is not enough to preserve in some sense the forms used in the past. One must go deeper, into the very foundations of these practices that were dismissed as medieval, baroque, and decadent. Traditionalism, as it has appeared as a movement since the 1960's, is not radical enough, in the sense that "radix" in Latin means the root of living things. Traditionalism tends to ossify liturgy, theology, and the Catholic ethos into an agenda that did not exist prior to the changes.
- Arturo Vasquez
To "breathe together" - conspirare - is the meaning of "conspiracy". It's what like-thinking, like-loving human beings do as a matter of course. It implies necessarily no organisation nor formal statement of intent; no plan of action nor party line. It’s no more than the normal and natural way of things. It’s what we all do. The wildest and most radical of all conspiracies is of those who seek to breathe together with the Man-God in His Mystical Body.

This ignorant and infirm straggler offers thanks to all friends and co-conspirators, and begs for their prayers.


Ttony said...

Remember too that the Greek word at the root of "heresy" means "choice".

While you are in a gloomy frame of mind, have a read of:

to see just how the wreckers accomplish what they are doing.

Pseudo-Iamblichus said...

Does this mean we can start taking people out mafia-style?

I am already starting my list.

By the way, Ben, why is it you aren't teaching in some theology faculty or something? I admire greatly your style of writing.

Mr Bleaney said...

Defenceless under the night
Our world in stupor lies;
Yet, dotted everywhere,
Ironic points of light
Flash out wherever the Just
Exchange their messages:
May I, composed like them
Of Eros and of dust,
Beleaguered by the same
Negation and despair,
Show an affirming flame.

W.H. Auden