Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Perspectives on Ideas March 20, 2007

Christ and Christianity
x “I believe in Christ in every man who dies to contribute to a life beyond his life.” Eiseley, The Immense Journey.

242 [Voltaire] pictures Christ among the sages, weeping over the crimes that have been committed in his name. Will Durant, The Story of Philosophy, Voltaire.

80 This is he [Christ], as I think, the only soul in history who has appreciated the worth of a man. Emerson, Divinity College Address.

364 Collins [a clergyman]: You ought certainly to forgive them as a Christian, but never to admit them in your sight, or allow their names to be mentioned in your hearing. Austen, Pride and Prejudice.

112 Professor K.S. LaTourette, a very Christian historian, has to admit that “however incompatible the spirit of Jesus and armed force may be, and however unpleasant it may be to acknowledge the fact, as a matter of plain history, the latter has often made it possible for the former to survive.” Hoffer, The True Believer

156 For even those who have renounced Christianity and attack it, in their inmost being still follow the Christian idea, for hitherto neither their subtlety nor the ardor of their hearts has been able to create a higher ideal of men and of virtue than the ideal given by Christ of old. Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov.

214 To my thinking, Christ-like love for men is a miracle impossible on earth; He was god…we are not gods. Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov.

215 One can love one’s neighbors in the abstract, or even at a distance, but at close quarters it’s almost impossible. Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov.

207 Voltaire: Here [in England] was the boldest sect of all, the Quakers, who astonished all Christendom by behaving like Christians. Will Durant, The Story of Philosophy, Voltaire.

237 Voltaire: Subtleties of which not a trace can be found in the Gospels are the source of the bloody quarrels of Christian history. Will Durant, The Story of Philosophy, Voltaire.

280 Kant: The real church is a community of people, however scattered and divided, who are united by devotion to the common moral law…real church which [Christ] held up in contrast to the ecclesiasticism of the Pharisees. Will Durant, The Story of Philosophy, Kant.

148 The idea at the bottom of the Christian Eucharist is precisely the idea at the bottom of cannibalism…the devotee believes that he will acquire something of the psychological quality of the creature by devouring its body. Mencken, Minority Report.

47 F. Mauriac: Observe that for the novelist who has remained Christian, like myself, man is someone creating himself or destroying himself…not an immobile being, fixed, cast in a mold once and for all. Cowley, ed., Writers at Work.

86 ...that...historical Christianity destroys the power of preaching, by withdrawing it from the exploration of the moral nature of man, where the sublime is, where are the resources of astonishment and power. Emerson, Divinity College Address.

88 The true Christianity--a faith like Christ’s in the infinitude of man--is lost. Emerson, Divinity College Address.

409 We can never see Christianity from the Catechism: --from the pastures, from a boat in the pond, from amidst the songs of wood-birds, we possibly may. Emerson, Circles.

496 Mary Garth: I used to think of Mr. Crowse, with his empty face and neat umbrella and mincing little speeches[:] What right have such men to represent Christianity? George Eliot, Middlemarch.

xiii …the confounding of Christianity with any class of persons who, in the words of Swift, have just enough religion to make them hate, and not enough to make them love, one another. Preface. Dickens, Pickwick.

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