The Hobgoblin of the Mindless

This is a blog post from 2017, from my old personal blog, concerning the fallout from Amoris Laetitia. This was less than a year before the revelations about Theodore McCarrick, and my opinions of pope Francis have hardened since then. But it basically holds up, I think.

Nunc Stans

A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with the shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict everything you said to-day…to be great is to be misunderstood.   –Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Self-Reliance.”

The above quote is one of the more famous eructations by that court prophet of the  early 19th century middle classes.  Emerson had a philosophy ready made for Euro-Americans who had shed and were shedding customs, traditions, and beliefs inherited from their ancestors:  you have God within you, you don’t need to conform to anything but your self.  Do exactly you as please, say whatever comes to mind–it is all divine!  Emerson’s half baked, dumb-downed version…

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