Tuesday, February 27, 2007


Troubling reading, very troubling. I like much about it - I'm very inclined to agree, at least that there has historically been a progression of moral and ethical development. Moses knew more than Abraham - Jesus knew more than Moses. This is the only explanation for the "change" in the character of the Deity from the Old to the New Testament (or the only explanation I'm willing to accept, perhaps).

My problem with't is twofold. I have trouble chucking the Fall with the ease of Iranaeus and guy (guy's name escapes me). It's very textual, and it's a significantly better explanation for the existence of Satan than the (non-)explanation that is offered. Satan (and the Fall) are in the text...this thing isn't in the originals, as Iranaeus thought it was, and text, even if it tells us things implicitly, is still the source of Christian faith. I have to hunt a bit, before I can give that any credence.

I'm also inclined to agree that his vision requires global salvation. Again, there are some pretty firm textual precedents to say that this couldn't be true, at least from a classical Christian perspective. Thick and troubling, in truth.

That said...it's appealing. I'd like to think that all are saved, and have no real emotion one way or the other as regards the Fall...just pretty standard textual uneasiness. We'll keep wrestling, but I don't think my answer lies here.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Why they gots to be after my God?

So, not the same evening. I lied.

Then shining Siderus, the man of bronze,
Replied in cold, metallic, winged words.
"Imagine, then, this justice for our God:
That he should for one soul this ill create.
We know the long-lost lightborne star to be
An angel fallen, once-knight of the Throne.
On seventh day, he faces all that is,
The scope of grand creation, shining suns,
Aetherial voids and wide, terrestial orbs,
All things most worthy of his praise and awe.
But in his heart he finds a deeper space,
A vacuum where the Word of God is null.
Thus Satan, questing in unfriendly dark,
Found in himself unLove, unLife, unGod.
This done, he turned his aspect from the Throne.
Th'eternal Deity, though, struck accord,
That th'Accuser, as he now was styled,
Should have his chance to prove the worth of ill.

That's all I have for this, and I'm not sure yet if I will maintain the perspective. I like it from a story perspective (it may well remain in the Epic. Incidentally, the poetry you've reading is from a work-in-progress called Dux Argens, the Silver Duke. Who knew my epic would end up this didactic? That said, this piece is from a book, yet unnumbered, which may contain the Pilgrim's Congress), but I'm not positive that it's my final solution - I think there's something more to be said. We'll track it down yet.

It's an odd confluence, but what do you say to a man who desires that you should abandon the things you hold dearest, and believe with greatest hope? Who would have you give up faith? I can accept with equanimity the failure of his belief - I can even applaud his conviction. But I cannot be what he wants me to be, believe what he wants me to believe, even as I face the questions that concern him most in this course.

All that said, I'm sure I'll find an answer - else what am I here for?

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Responding to Augustine - the beast defeated

…within his grasp, the hated creature’s head.
This loathsome load he cast before the throne,
Availing heart and soul of burd’ning words.
“You kings and princes, ministers of worlds,
Look well upon this shattered, bestial cap,
And speak to me of evil’s whelming floods.
I have beheld the weary eyes of sin,
Have gazed on fuming demons and their looks,
But stand here, bold, triumphant ‘gainst their wiles,
Not through my petty strengths, but God’s own will.
Yet still you ask how God could make such pain.
I claim to you the victory of love;
I sing the triumph of my mighty Lord.
For love’s sake will I grant the mystery,
For love alone can make life’s tortures joy.”
The kings and princes, ministers of worlds
Looked down on hated foe, defeated, pale,
With all the chit’nous beetles shine and hate,
Withdrawing, then, they whispered Argent’s fate.

This I wrote just after reading an excerpt of St. Augustine's Confessions. I have been (and am still) arguing with a friend regarding the existence of God (this post goes out to you, Sugarbutt). He has a fair point, that the logic must drive us towards the non-existence of God in the face of evil. I, however, am, in the face of that traitorous lady, logic, still opposed.

It seems to me that for the sake of love, which I accept as the very highest of naturae (essences), and which is, in its essence, mysterious, we must be willing to accept a little mystery in our universe. I believe in the love of a deity for his people. That love is a mystery. Why there is evil in the creation of a loving God must also be a mystery - else coldest logic wins and heaven is dead.

More to come - probably this evening.