November 8th, 2005

HTOC

(no subject)

My faith should not be defined in opposition to the faith of my fathers, e.g. the faith of the West.

It should not begin with an “Unlike the…".

Unlike whom?

The West, Evangelicalism, Catholicism, etc.

But instead it should begin with an “According to…”

According to whom?

Christ. His Church. Life itself.

This I struggle with now and will struggle with for perhaps a lifetime.

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I finished the Journals of Father Schmemann and have begun reading another work by Wendell Berry. I must take a moment to thank my friend Jake for purchasing and giving to me my first Wendell Berry book. He presented it to me as a going away gift and I think that the words and ideas of Mr. Berry and his contemporaries will have an effect on me for some time. Thank you, good sir.

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From Mr. Berry's "Home Economics"

"And so it can hardly be expected that humans would not change nature. Humans, like all other creatures, must make a difference; otherwise, they cannot live. But unlike other creatures, humans must make a choice as to the kind and scale of the difference they make. If they choose to make too small a difference, they diminish their humanity. If they choose to make too great a difference, they diminish nature, and narrow their subsequent choices; ultimately, they diminish or destroy themselves. Nature, then, is not only our source but also our limit and measure...In the hereafter, The Lord may forgive our wrongs against nature, but on earth, so far as we know, He does not overturn her decisions."
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Man must live in nature. Man must change nature as nature must change man. There are indeed, places of wilderness that man cannot and should not change. But these places of wilderness will become only an amusement park or if man cannot live within parts of nature (including farms, villages, towns and cities) that promote human culture and respect natural life. If a conservationist saves vast tracks of harsh wilderness at the expense of completely "de-naturalizing" the cities, towns, rural areas and farms, he has won no victory. Nature and Humanity should not be in opposition to each other. When they are posited as two unrelated opponents they both began to waste away.

Heh, now what do I do?