In his his splendid biography of Fr Seraphim Rose, Fr Damascene Christensen tells the story of a young monastic aspirant seeking the esoteric spirituality of Orthodox Christianity on Mt Athos. But once he finally arrives at his destination, the Abbot hands him a copy of Dickens’ novel, “David Copperfield” to read. When the young man protests in dismay that … [Read more...] about Literature, Culture and the Western Soul
The Leo Ray Miller he had sown that night at the reception sprouted and spread like an ugly weed. It grew up through the cracks of whatever lies he told himself. It choked every intention, it poisoned every relationship and turned every so-called good deed into a self-serving con. He wanted to believe. There had to be some relief beyond his short-term capacity to fool himself. … [Read more...] about An Independent Operator
If there is no pre-existing, intelligible order to go out to and apprehend, and to search through for what lies beyond it – which is the Creator – what then is music supposed to express? If external order does not exist, then music collapses in on itself and degenerates into an obsession with techniques. Any ordering of things, musical or otherwise, becomes purely … [Read more...] about Is Music Sacred?
It was not so dark the last I looked; the stars there were could still be counted, and the moon was a frail lost ship, not the queen she is now of this indigo ocean. Off there, so far away I can only believe, maidservants are lighting the porches as brother with his staff drives home the herds where Father wept when I begged to go free. He would not know me now, a … [Read more...] about Voyage of the Prodigal: A Poem by Mary Lowell
The Ottoman Empire, Roger Scruton writes, was not composed of nation-states but of creed communities. Peace between the sects could not be ensured by borders, as in Europe, but only by custom. Peace is precarious and requires constant work and architecture is part of that work. When France was given the madate to govern Syria in 1923, the character of the ancient cities of the … [Read more...] about How Western Urban Planning Fueled War in the Middle East