My Thoughts

Thoroughly disagreeable people trend toward disagreement with anything and everything with which they should disagree. It is their raison d’être to take issue no matter the issue, celebrating cause célèbre without cause to celebrate. Should one remark, “The earth is a large round ball in a vast sea of nothingness,” the disagreeable will immediately quarrel, declaring they are standing despairingly in a bottomless pit. Should one mention the fallen nature and sinfulness of man, objectors will immediately object, labeling you a “&#*$!” religious bigot, your mention of their hateful rhetoric: hate speech. Should simple math prove four to forever be the sum of two and two, the misnumbered will demand diversity, equal distraction for subtraction, healing for division and mass multiplication. The only thing they find agreeable is your silence, except when silence speaks at too high a volume.

The disagreeable dare neither agree nor approve their disapproval, it is sufficient to declare their self the winner, you the loser. Indeed, as is most evident these days, those who dare shout fraud from far afield are clearly purveyors of unverified unhappiness, a sorry lot to be scorned, held beneath contempt, their voices silenced, muted, cancelled, hidden, never permitted audience to the ears of the woke and the carefully washed elite.

We are incessantly told, indeed, that the modern scientific appliances, even those like the telephone, which are now universally applied, are the miracles of man, and the marvels of science, and the wonders of the new world. But though the inventions are talked of in this way, they are not treated in this way. Or, rather, if they are so talked of in theory, they are not so talked of in practice. There has certainly been a rush of discovery, a rapid series of inventions; and in one sense, the activity is marvellous and the rapidity might well look like magic. But it has been a rapidity in things going stale; a rush downhill to the flat and dreary world of the prosaic; a haste of marvellous things to lose their marvellous character; a deluge of wonders to destroy wonder. This may be the improvement of machinery, but it cannot possibly be the improvement of man. And since it is not the improvement of man, it cannot possibly be progress. Man is the creature that progress professes to improve; it is not a race of wheels against wheels or a wrestling match of engines against engines. Improvement implies all that is commonly called education; and education implies enlargement; and especially enlargement of the imagination. It implies exactly that imaginative intensity of appreciation which does not permit anything that might be vivid or significant to become trivial or vulgar. If we have vulgarized electricity on the earth, it is no answer to boast that, in a few years more, we can vulgarize the stars in the sky.[1]    

It seems to me that Chesterton was as right when he noted the “rush downhill to the flat and dreary world of the prosaic,” of just how common man has become to all the wonders God has made. Wonders are too commonplace; we have lost the will to be surprised, to find intrigue among the oddments, the peculiar, and the different. Joy, wonder, imagination, happiness, and goodness are nonessential; we no longer appreciate what we have long known to be ours. Virtue, holiness, faith, and love are pedestrian attributes we take too much for granted, and thus, ignore. What remains for us is disappointment, fear, despair, anger, hatred, vitriol, and bitter disagreement. Such are the virtues we now repair our reputation; all is vanity says the preacher, all is vanity, nothing more.

Wake up America.

Just my thoughts for a Thursday, Thanksgiving Day, in the year of our Lord, 2020, for what it is worth.

[1] G.K. Chesterton, “Our Indifference to Wonder,” The Illustrated London News, January 12, 1935.

About the author: Deacon Chuck

Deacon Chuck was ordained into the permanent diaconate on September 17, 2011, in the ministry of service to the Diocese of Reno and assigned to St. Albert the Great Catholic Community. He currently serves as the parish bulletin editor and website administrator. Deacon Chuck continues to serve the parish of Saint Albert the Great Catholic Community of the Diocese of Reno, Nevada. He is the Director of Adult Faith Formation and Homebound Ministries for the parish, conducts frequent adult faith formation workshops, and is a regular homilist. He currently serves as the bulletin editor for the parish bulletin. He writes a weekly column intended to encompass a broad landscape of thoughts and ideas on matters of theology, faith, morals, teachings of the magisterium and the Catholic Church; they are meant to illuminate, illustrate, and catechize the readers and now number more than 230 articles. His latest endeavor is "Colloqui: A journal for restless minds", a weekly journal of about 8 pages similar in content to bulletin reflections. All his reflections, homilies, commentaries, and Colloqui are posted and can be found on his website: Comments are always welcome and appreciated. He is the author of two books: "The Voices of God: hearing God in the silence" which offers the reader insights into how to hear God’s voice through all of the noise that surrounds us; and "Echoes of Love: Effervescent Memories" which through a combination of prose and verse provides the reader with a wonderful journey on the way to discovering forever love. He regularly speaks to groups of all ages and size and would welcome the opportunity to speak to your group.

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