In Matthew 5:6, Jesus says, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.” In the previous Beatitudes, Jesus spoke of those who are “poor in spirit” (verse 3), those who “mourn” (verse 4), and those who are “meek” (verse 5), those who are "hungry and thirsty" (verse 6); none of which carry the appearance of righteousness or strength. Those who are blessed by God are those who are needy and know it.
Three small marks, a blend of dirt and water, pocked the middle of the back patio. The small paw prints with elongated fingers, slightly larger than a quarter, did not appear before or after the three. My oldest three children, who always enjoyed following deer tracks in the backyard, saw me looking down at the prints and gathered around me. They are nosey that way.
Marshall McLuhan wrote, in his 1964 work Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man, "The medium is the message." The manner in which a story is delivered greatly affects the story, changing the experience for both storyteller and audience. It is not unusual for a story's medium to be changed or adapted - most of us now read Homer's Iliad or Odyssey, rather than hearing it recited - but sometimes the result is disastrous.
C.S. Lewis once remarked, “I am almost inclined to set it up as a canon that a children’s story which is enjoyed only by children is a bad children’s story. The good ones last. A waltz which you can like only when you are waltzing is a bad waltz.”
Reading the great fairy tales and classic stories to our children remains a great responsibility for all parents.
In the opening pages of Plato: The Great Philosopher-Educator, David Diener observes that “Plato was one of the principal founders of the Western intellectual tradition, and it is nearly impossible to examine the historical development of any academic topic without, knowingly or unknowingly, addressing Plato’s views.” Indeed, it would be nigh impossible to overestimate the impact of Plato’s thought on Western civilization.
Flannery O’Connor would have turned ninety yesterday. The Georgia-born writer authored two novels and over thirty short stories that continue to shock readers through her grotesque, often violent, characters and scenes that highlight the need for grace and redemption. A devout Catholic in the Protestant-dominated South, O’Connor was a distinctly Christian writer whose works would never see the light of most Christian bookstores.
Today, being Ash Wednesday, is the beginning of Lent for us Christians in the West. Today, we take the first steps in our journey to Easter, the celebration of Christ’s resurrection. As we enter this season - one of fasting, prayer, and repentance - there are particularly valuable lessons that teachers and parents should take with them.
Ben Jonson wrote that William Shakespeare “was not of an age but for all time!” The greatest English playwright - a master of tragedy, comedy, history, and sonnet - Shakespeare is one of the most prolific and influential writers in history. So, the CiRCE Academy, is giving you more opportunities to spend time with Shakespeare!
Undefended: My favorite Father Brown mysteries by G.K. Chesterton. I had a hard time narrowing it down, so I chose all 50-ish of them.