Author Topic: What are you currently reading?  (Read 226910 times)

Offline Sempronius

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2175 on: August 10, 2019, 04:32:34 AM »
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882).  Complete Poetical Works.  1893.
 
Christus: A Mystery
Part II. The Golden Legend.
II. V. A Village Church
 
A woman kneeling at the confessional.

THE PARISH PRIEST, from within.
GO, sin no more! Thy penance o’er,   
A new and better life begin!   
God maketh thee forever free   
From the dominion of thy sin!   
Go, sin no more! He will restore           5
The peace that filled thy heart before,   
And pardon thine iniquity!

The woman goes out. The Priest comes forth, and walks slowly up and down the church.

O blessed Lord! how much I need   
Thy light to guide me on my way!   
So many hands, that, without heed,           10
Still touch thy wounds, and make them bleed!   
So many feet, that, day by day,   
Still wander from thy fold astray!   
Unless thou fill me with thy light,   
I cannot lead thy flock aright;           15
Nor, without thy support, can bear   
The burden of so great a care,   
But am myself a castaway!

A pause.

The day is drawing to its close;   
And what good deeds, since first it rose,           20
Have I presented, Lord, to thee,   
As offerings of my ministry?   
What wrong repressed, what right maintained,   
What struggle passed, what victory gained,   
What good attempted and attained?           25
Feeble, at best, is my endeavor!   
I see, but cannot reach, the height   
That lies forever in the light,   
And yet forever and forever,   
When seeming just within my grasp,           30
I feel my feeble hands unclasp,   
And sink discouraged into night!   
For thine own purpose, thou hast sent   
The strife and the discouragement!

A pause.

Why stayest thou, Prince of Hoheneck?           35
Why keep me pacing to and fro   
Amid these aisles of sacred gloom,   
Counting my footsteps as I go,   
And marking with each step a tomb?   
Why should the world for thee make room,           40
And wait thy leisure and thy beck?   
Thou comest in the hope to hear   
Some word of comfort and of cheer.   
What can I say? I cannot give   
The counsel to do this and live;           45
But rather, firmly to deny   
The tempter, though his power be strong,   
And, inaccessible to wrong,   
Still like a martyr live and die!

A pause.

The evening air grows dusk and brown;           50
I must go forth into the town,   
To visit beds of pain and death,   
Of restless limbs, and quivering breath,   
And sorrowing hearts, and patient eyes   
That see, through tears, the sun go down,           55
But never more shall see it rise.   
The poor in body and estate,   
The sick and the disconsolate,   
Must not on man’s convenience wait.

Goes out.
 
Enter LUCIFER, as a Priest.

LUCIFER, with a genuflexion, mocking.
This is the Black Pater-noster.           60
God was my foster,   
He fostered me   
Under the book of the Palm-tree!   
St. Michael was my dame.   
He was born at Bethlehem,           65
He was made of flesh and blood.   
God send me my right food,   
My right food, and shelter too,   
That I may to yon kirk go,   
To read upon yon sweet book           70
Which the mighty God of heaven shook.   
Open, open, hell’s gates!   
Shut, shut, heaven’s gates!   
All the devils in the air   
The stronger be, that hear the Black Prayer!

Looking round the church.
        75

What a darksome and dismal place!   
I wonder that any man has the face   
To call such a hole the House of the Lord,   
And the Gate of Heaven,—yet such is the word.   
Ceiling, and walls, and windows old,           80
Covered with cobwebs, blackened with mould;   
Dust on the pulpit, dust on the stairs,   
Dust on the benches, and stalls, and chairs!   
The pulpit, from which such ponderous sermons   
Have fallen down on the brains of the Germans,           85
With about as much real edification   
As if a great Bible, bound in lead,   
Had fallen, and struck them on the head;   
And I ought to remember that sensation!   
Here stands the holy-water stoup!           90
Holy-water it may be to many,   
But to me, the veriest Liquor Gehennæ!   
It smells like a filthy fast-day soup!   
Near it stands the box for the poor,   
With its iron padlock, safe and sure.           95
I and the priest of the parish know   
Whither all these charities go;   
Therefore, to keep up the institution,   
I will add my little contribution!

He puts in money.

Underneath this mouldering tomb,           100
With statue of stone, and scutcheon of brass,   
Slumbers a great lord of the village.   
All his life was riot and pillage,   
But at length, to escape the threatened doom   
Of the everlasting penal fire,           105
He died in the dress of a mendicant friar,   
And bartered his wealth for a daily mass.   
But all that afterwards came to pass,   
And whether he finds it dull or pleasant,   
Is kept a secret for the present,           110
At his own particular desire.   
 
And here, in a corner of the wall,   
Shadowy, silent, apart from all,   
With its awful portal open wide,   
And its latticed windows on either side,           115
And its step well worn by the bended knees   
Of one or two pious centuries,   
Stands the village confessional!   
Within it, as an honored guest,   
I will sit down awhile and rest!

Seats himself in the confessional.
        120

Here sits the priest; and faint and low,   
Like the sighing of an evening breeze,   
Comes through these painted lattices   
The ceaseless sound of human woe;   
Here, while her bosom aches and throbs           125
With deep and agonizing sobs,   
That half are passion, half contrition,   
The luckless daughter of perdition   
Slowly confesses her secret shame!   
The time, the place, the lover’s name!           130
Here the grim murderer, with a groan,   
From his bruised conscience rolls the stone,   
Thinking that thus he can atone   
For ravages of sword and flame!   
 
Indeed, I marvel, and marvel greatly,           135
How a priest can sit here so sedately,   
Reading, the whole year out and in,   
Naught but the catalogue of sin,   
And still keep any faith whatever   
In human virtue! Never! never!           140
 
I cannot repeat a thousandth part   
Of the horrors and crimes and sins and woes   
That arise, when with palpitating throes   
The graveyard in the human heart   
Gives up its dead, at the voice of the priest,           145
As if he were an archangel, at least.   
It makes a peculiar atmosphere,   
This odor of earthly passions and crimes,   
Such as I like to breathe, at times,   
And such as often brings me here           150
In the hottest and most pestilential season.   
To-day, I come for another reason;   
To foster and ripen an evil thought   
In a heart that is almost to madness wrought,   
And to make a murderer out of a prince,           155
A sleight of hand I learned long since!   
He comes. In the twilight he will not see   
The difference between his priest and me!   
In the same net was the mother caught!   
 
PRINCE HENRY, entering and kneeling at the confessional.
Remorseful, penitent, and lowly,           160
I come to crave, O Father holy,   
Thy benediction on my head.   
 
LUCIFER.
The benediction shall be said   
After confession, not before!   
’T is a God-speed to the parting guest,           165
Who stands already at the door,   
Sandalled with holiness, and dressed   
In garments pure from earthly stain.   
Meanwhile, hast thou searched well thy breast?   
Does the same madness fill thy brain?           170
Or have thy passion and unrest   
Vanished forever from thy mind?   
 
PRINCE HENRY.
By the same madness still made blind,   
By the same passion still possessed,   
I come again to the house of prayer,           175
A man afflicted and distressed!   
As in a cloudy atmosphere,   
Through unseen sluices of the air,   
A sudden and impetuous wind   
Strikes the great forest white with fear,           180
And every branch, and bough, and spray   
Points all its quivering leaves one way,   
And meadows of grass, and fields of grain,   
And the clouds above, and the slanting rain,   
And smoke from chimneys of the town,           185
Yield themselves to it, and bow down,   
So does this dreadful purpose press   
Onward, with irresistible stress,   
And all my thoughts and faculties,   
Struck level by the strength of this,           190
From their true inclination turn,   
And all stream forward to Salern!   
 
LUCIFER.
Alas! we are but eddies of dust,   
Uplifted by the blast, and whirled   
Along the highway of the world           195
A moment only, then to fall   
Back to a common level all,   
At the subsiding of the gust!   
 
PRINCE HENRY.
O holy Father! pardon in me   
The oscillation of a mind           200
Unsteadfast, and that cannot find   
Its centre of rest and harmony!   
For evermore before mine eyes   
This ghastly phantom flits and flies,   
And as a madman through a crowd,           205
With frantic gestures and wild cries,   
It hurries onward, and aloud   
Repeats its awful prophecies!   
Weakness is wretchedness! To be strong   
Is to be happy! I am weak,           210
And cannot find the good I seek,   
Because I feel and fear the wrong!   
 
LUCIFER.
Be not alarmed! The Church is kind,   
And in her mercy and her meekness   
She meets half-way her children’s weakness,           215
Writes their transgressions in the dust!   
Though in the Decalogue we find   
The mandate written, “Thou shalt not kill!”   
Yet there are cases when we must.   
In war, for instance, or from scathe           220
To guard and keep the one true Faith   
We must look at the Decalogue in the light   
Of an ancient statute, that was meant   
For a mild and general application,   
To be understood with the reservation           225
That in certain instances the Right   
Must yield to the Expedient!   
Thou art a Prince. If thou shouldst die,   
What hearts and hopes would prostrate lie!   
What noble deeds, what fair renown,           230
Into the grave with thee go down!   
What acts of valor and courtesy   
Remain undone, and die with thee!   
Thou art the last of all thy race!   
With thee a noble name expires,           235
And vanishes from the earth’s face   
The glorious memory of thy sires!   
She is a peasant. In her veins   
Flows common and plebeian blood;   
It is such as daily and hourly stains           240
The dust and the turf of battle plains,   
By vassals shed, in a crimson flood,   
Without reserve, and without reward,   
At the slightest summons of their lord!   
But thine is precious; the fore-appointed           245
Blood of kings, of God’s anointed!   
Moreover, what has the world in store,   
For one like her, but tears and toil?   
Daughter of sorrow, serf of the soil,   
A peasant’s child and a peasant’s wife,           250
And her soul within her sick and sore   
With the roughness and barrenness of life   
I marvel not at the heart’s recoil   
From a fate like this, in one so tender,   
Nor at its eagerness to surrender           255
All the wretchedness, want, and woe   
That await it in this world below,   
Nor the unutterable splendor   
Of the world of rest beyond the skies.   
So the Church sanctions the sacrifice:           260
Therefore inhale this healing balm,   
And breathe this fresh life into thine;   
Accept the comfort and the calm   
She offers, as a gift divine;   
Let her fall down and anoint thy feet           265
With the ointment costly and most sweet   
Of her young blood, and thou shalt live.   
 
PRINCE HENRY.
And will the righteous Heaven forgive?   
No action, whether foul or fair,   
Is ever done, but it leaves somewhere           270
A record, written by fingers ghostly,   
As a blessing or a curse, and mostly   
In the greater weakness or greater strength   
Of the acts which follow it, till at length   
The wrongs of ages are redressed,           275
And the justice of God made manifest!   
 
LUCIFER.
In ancient records it is stated   
That, whenever an evil deed is done,   
Another devil is created   
To scourge and torment the offending one!           280
But evil is only good perverted,   
And Lucifer, the bearer of Light,   
But an angel fallen and deserted,   
Thrust from his Father’s house with a curse   
Into the black and endless night.           285
 
PRINCE HENRY.
If justice rules the universe,   
From the good actions of good men   
Angels of light should be begotten,   
And thus the balance restored again.   
 
LUCIFER.
Yes; if the world were not so rotten,           290
And so given over to the Devil!   
 
PRINCE HENRY.
But this deed, is it good or evil?   
Have I thine absolution free   
To do it, and without restriction?   
 
LUCIFER.
Ay; and from whatsoever sin           295
Lieth around it and within,   
From all crimes in which it may involve thee,   
I now release thee and absolve thee!   
 
PRINCE HENRY.
Give me thy holy benediction.   
 
LUCIFER, stretching forth his hand and muttering.
            Maledictione perpetua           300
            Maledicat vos   
            Pater eternus!
   
 
THE ANGEL, with the æolian harp.
Take heed! take heed!   
Noble art thou in thy birth,   
By the good and the great of earth           305
Hast thou been taught!   
Be noble in every thought   
And in every deed!   
Let not the illusion of thy senses   
Betray thee to deadly offences.           310
Be strong! be good! be pure!   
The right only shall endure,   
All things else are but false pretences.   
I entreat thee, I implore,   
Listen no more           315
To the suggestions of an evil spirit,   
That even now is there,   
Making the foul seem fair,   
And selfishness itself a virtue and a merit.   
 
 
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Offline red solo cup

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2176 on: August 13, 2019, 06:14:36 AM »
Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis by J.D. Vance.
"It's so lonely 'round the fields of Athenry"
 

Offline Sempronius

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2177 on: September 04, 2019, 03:19:02 PM »
Here's something for the french speakers.

A pious poem written by one of Frances greatest poets, Nicolas Boileau

EPITRE XII
1695.
A M. L’ABBE RENAUDOT[1].

L’AMOUR DE DIEU.
Docte abbé, tu dis vrai, l’homme, au crime attaché,
En vain, sans aimer Dieu, croit sortir du péché.
Toutefois, n’en déplaise aux transports frénétiques
Du fougueux moine auteur des troubles germaniques[2],
Des tourmens de l’enfer la salutaire peur
N’est pas toujours l’effet d’une noire vapeur,
Qui, de remords sans fruit agitant le coupable,
Aux yeux de Dieu le rende encor plus haïssable.
Cette utile frayeur, propre à nous pénétrer,
Vient souvent de la grâce en nous prête d’entrer,
Qui veut dans notre cœur se rendre la plus forte,

Et, pour se faire ouvrir, déjà frappe à la porte.
Si le pécheur, poussé de ce saint mouvement,
Reconnoissant son crime, aspire au sacrement,
Souvent Dieu tout à coup d’un vrai zèle l’enflamme ;
Le Saint-Esprit revient habiter dans son âme,
Y convertit enfin les ténèbres en jour,
Et la crainte servile en filial amour.
C’est ainsi que souvent la sagesse suprême
Pour chasser le démon se sert du démon même.
Mais lorsqu’en sa malice un pécheur obstiné,
Des horreurs de l’enfer vainement étonné,
Loin d’aimer, humble fils, son véritable père,
Craint et regarde Dieu comme un tyran sévère,
Au bien qu’il nous promet ne trouve aucun appas,
Et souhaite en son cœur que ce Dieu ne soit pas :
En vain, la peur sur lui remportant la victoire,
Aux pieds d’un prêtre il court décharger sa mémoire ;
Vil esclave toujours sous le joug du péché,
Au démon qu’il redoute il demeure attaché.
L’amour, essentiel à notre pénitence,
Doit être l’heureux fruit de notre repentance.
Non, quoi que l’ignorance enseigne sur ce point,
Dieu ne fait jamais grâce à qui ne l’aime point.
A le chercher la peur nous dispose et nous aide ;
Mais il ne vient jamais, que l’amour ne succède.
Cessez de m’opposer vos discours imposteurs,
Confesseurs insensés, ignorans séducteurs,
Qui, pleins des vains propos que l’erreur vous débite.
Vous figurez qu’en vous un pouvoir sans limite
Justifie à coup sur tout pécheur alarmé,
Et que sans aimer Dieu l’on peut en être aimé.
Quoi donc ! cher Renaudot, un chrétien effroyable,
Qui jamais, servant Dieu, n’eut d’objet que le diable,
Pourra, marchant toujours dans des sentiers maudits,

Par des formalités gagner le paradis !
Et parmi les élus, dans la gloire éternelle.
Pour quelques sacremens reçus sans aucun zèle,
Dieu fera voir aux yeux des saints épouvantés
Son ennemi mortel assis à ses côtés !
Peut-on se figurer de si folles chimères[3] ?
On voit pourtant, on voit des docteurs même austères
Qui, les semant partout, s’en vont pieusement
De toute piété saper le fondement ;
Qui, le cœur infecté d’erreurs si criminelles,
Se disent hautement les purs, les vrais fidèles ;
Traitant d’abord d’impie et d’hérétique affreux
Quiconque ose pour Dieu se déclarer contre eux.
De leur audace en vain les vrais chrétiens gémissent :
Prêts à le repousser, les plus hardis mollissent ;
Et, voyant contre Dieu le diable accrédité,
N’osent qu’en bégayant prêcher la vérité.
Mollirons-nous aussi ? Non ; sans peur, sur ta trace,
Docte abbé, de ce pas j’irai leur dire en face :
Ouvrez les yeux enfin, aveugles dangereux.
Oui, je vous le soutiens, il seroit moins affreux
De ne point reconnoître un Dieu maître du monde,
Et qui règle à son gré le ciel, la terre et l’onde,
Qu’en avouant qu’il est, et qu’il sut tout former,
D’oser dire qu’on peut lui plaire sans l’aimer.
Un si bas, si honteux, si faux christianisme
Ne vaut pas des Platons l’éclairé paganisme ;
Et chérir les vrais biens, sans en savoir l’auteur,
Vaut mieux que, sans l’aimer, connoître un créateur.
Expliquons-nous pourtant. Par cette ardeur si sainte,
Que je veux qu’en un cœur amène enfin la crainte,

Je n’entends pas ici ce doux saisissement,
Ces transports pleins de joie et de ravissement,
Qui font des bienheureux la juste récompense,
Et qu’un cœur rarement goûte ici par avance.
Dans nous l’amour de Dieu, fécond en saints désirs,
N’y produit pas toujours de sensibles plaisirs ;
Souvent le cœur qui l’a ne le sait pas lui-même ;
Tel craint de n’aimer pas, qui sincèrement aime ;
Et tel croit au contraire être brûlant d’ardeur,
Qui n’eut jamais pour Dieu que glace et que froideur.
C’est ainsi quelquefois qu’un indolent mystique[4],
Au milieu des péchés tranquille fanatique,
Du plus parfait amour pense avoir l’heureux don,
Et croit posséder Dieu, dans les bras du démon.
Voulez-vous donc savoir si la foi dans votre âme
Allume les ardeurs d’une sincère flamme ?
Consultez-vous vous-même. A ses règles soumis,
Pardonnez-vous sans peine à tous vos ennemis ?
Combattez-vous vos sens ? domptez-vous vos foiblesses ?
Dieu dans le pauvre est-il l’objet de vos largesses ?
Enfin dans tous ses points pratiquez-vous sa loi ?
Oui, dites-vous. Allez, vous l’aimez, croyez-moi.
Qui fait exactement ce que ma loi commande,
A pour moi, dit ce Dieu, l’amour que je demande.
Faites-le donc ; et, sûr qu’il nous veut sauver tous,
Ne vous alarmez point pour quelques vains dégoûts
Qu’en sa ferveur souvent la plus sainte âme éprouve ;
Marchez, courez à lui : qui le cherche le trouve ;
Et plus de votre cœur il paroît s’écarter,

Plus par vos actions songez à l’arrêter.
Mais ne soutenez point cet horrible blasphème,
Qu’un sacrement reçu, qu’un prêtre, que Dieu même,
Quoi que vos faux docteurs osent vous avancer,
De l’amour qu’on lui doit puissent vous dispenser.
« Mais s’il faut qu’avant tout, dans une âme chrétienne,
Diront ces grands docteurs[5], l’amour de Dieu survienne,
Puisque ce seul amour suffit pour nous sauver,
De quoi le sacrement viendra-t-il nous laver ?
Sa vertu n’est donc plus qu’une vertu frivole. »
Oh ! le bel argument digne de leur école !
Quoi ! dans l’amour divin en nos cœurs allumé,
Le vœu du sacrement n’est-il pas renfermé ?
Un païen converti, qui croit un Dieu suprême,
Peut-il être chrétien qu’il n’aspire au baptême,
Ni le chrétien en pleurs être vraiment touché
Qu’il ne veuille à l’église avouer son péché ?
Du funeste esclavage où le démon nous traîne
C’est le sacrement seul qui peut rompre la chaîne :
Aussi l’amour d’abord y court avidement ;
Mais lui-même il en est l’âme et le fondement.
Lorsqu’un pécheur, ému d’une humble repentance,
Par les degrés prescrits court à la pénitence,
S’il n’y peut parvenir, Dieu sait les supposer.
Le seul amour manquant ne peut point s’excuser :
C’est par lui que dans nous la grâce fructifie ;
C’est lui qui nous ranime et qui nous vivifie ;
Pour nous rejoindre à Dieu, lui seul est le lien ;
Et sans lui, foi, vertus, sacremens, tout n’est rien.
A ces discours pressans que sauroit-on répondre ?
Mais approchez ; je veux encor mieux vous confondre,
Docteurs. Dites-moi donc : quand nous sommes absous,

Le Saint-Esprit est-il, ou n’est-il pas en nous ?
S’il est en nous, peut-il, n’étant qu’amour lui-même,
Ne nous échauffer point de son amour suprême ?
Et s’il n’est pas en nous, Satan toujours vainqueur
Ne demeure-t-il pas maître de notre cœur ?
Avouez donc qu’il faut qu’en nous l’amour renaisse :
Et n’allez point, pour fuir la raison qui vous presse,
Donner le nom d’amour au trouble inanimé
Qu’au cœur d’un criminel la peur seule a formé.
L’ardeur qui jusiifie, et que Dieu nous envoie,
Quoiqu’ici-bas souvent inquiète et sans joie,
Est pourtant cette ardeur, ce même feu d’amour,
Dont brûle un bienheureux en l’éternel séjour.
Dans le fatal instant qui borne notre vie,
Il faut que de ce feu notre âme soit remplie ;
Et Dieu, sourd à nos cris s’il ne l’y trouve pas,
Ne l’y rallume plus après notre trépas.
Rendez-vous donc enfin à ces clairs syllogisme ;
Et ne prétendez plus, par vos confus sophismes,
Pouvoir encore aux yeux du fidèle éclairé
Cacher l’amour de Dieu dans l’école égaré.
Apprenez que la gloire où le ciel nous appelle
Un jour des vrais enfans doit couronner le zèle,
Et non les froids remords d’un esclave craintif,
Où crut voir Abéli[6] quelque amour négatif.
Mais quoi ! j’entends déjà plus d’un fier scolastique
Qui, me voyant ici sur ce ton dogmatique
En vers audacieux traiter ces points sacrés,
Curieux, me demande où j’ai pris mes degrés ;
Et si, pour m’éclairer sur ces sombres matières,

Deux cents auteurs extraits m’ont prêté leurs lumières.
Non. Mais pour décider que l’homme, qu’un chrétien
Est obligé d’aimer l'unique auteur du bien,
Le Dieu qui le nourrit, le Dieu qui le fit naître,
Qui nous vint par sa mort donner un second être,
Faut-il avoir reçu le bonnet doctoral,
Avoir extrait Gamache, Isambert et du Val[7] ?
Dieu, dans son livre saint, sans chercher d’autre ouvrage,
Ne l’a-t-il pas écrit lui-même à chaque page ?
De vains docteurs encore, o prodige honteux !
Oseront nous en faire un problème douteux !
Viendront traiter d’erreur digne de l’anathème
L’indispensable loi d’aimer Dieu pour lui-même,
Et, par un dogme faux dans nos jours enfanté,
Des devoirs du chrétien rayer la charité !
Si j’allois consulter chez eux le moins sévère,
Et lui disois : « Un fils doit-il aimer son père ?
— Ah ! peut-on en douter ? » diroit-il brusquement.
Et quand je leur demande en ce même moment :
« L’homme, ouvrage d’un Dieu seul bon et seul aimable,
Doit-il aimer ce Dieu, son père véritable ? »
Leur plus rigide auteur n’ose le décider,
Et craint, en l’affirmant, de se trop hasarder !
Je ne m’en puis défendre ; il faut que je t’écrive
La figure bizarre, et pourtant assez vive,
Que je sus l’autre jour employer dans son lieu,
Et qui déconcerta ces ennemis de Dieu.
Au sujet d’un écrit qu’on nous venoit de lire,
Un d’entre eux[8] m’insulta sur ce que j’osai dire
Qu’il faut, pour être absous d’un crime confessé,

Avoir pour Dieu du moins un amour commencé.
« Ce dogme, me dit-il, est un pur calvinisme. »
O ciel ! me voilà donc dans l’erreur, dans le schisme,
Et partant réprouvé ! « Mais, poursuivis-je alors,
Quand Dieu viendra juger les vivans et les morts,
Et des humbles agneaux, objets de sa tendresse,
Séparera des boucs la troupe pécheresse,
À tous il nous dira, sévère ou gracieux,
Ce qui nous fit impurs ou justes à ses yeux.
Selon vous donc, à moi réprouvé, bouc infâme,
« Va brûler, dira-t-il, en l’éternelle flamme,
« Malheureux qui soutins que l’homme dut m’aimer ;
« Et qui, sur ce sujet trop prompt à déclamer,
« Prétendis qu’il falloit, pour fléchir ma justice,
« Que le pécheur, touché de l’horreur de son vice,
« De quelque ardeur pour moi sentit les mouvemens,
« Et garda le premier de mes commandemens ? »
Dieu, si je vous en crois, me tiendra ce langage :
Mais à vous tendre agneau, son plus cher héritage.
Orthodoxe ennemi d’un dogme si blâmé,
« Venez, vous dira-t-il, venez, mon bien-aimé :
« Vous qui, dans les détours de vos raisons subtiles
« Embarrassant les mots d’un des plus saints conciles[9],
« Avez délivré l’homme, ô l’utile docteur !
» De l’importun fardeau d’aimer son Créateur ;
« Entrez au ciel, venez, comblé de mes louanges,
« Du besoin d’aimer Dieu désabuser les anges. »
A de tels mots, si Dieu pouvoit les prononcer,
Pour moi je répondrais, je crois, sans l’offenser,

« Oh ! que pour vous mon cœur moins dur et moins farouche,
« Seigneur, n’a-t-il, hélas ! parlé comme ma bouche ! »
Ce seroit ma réponse à ce Dieu fulminant.
Mais vous, de ses douceurs objet fort surprenant,
Je ne sais pas comment, ferme en votre doctrine,
Des ironiques mots de sa bouche divine
Vous pourriez, sans rougeur et sans confusion,
Soutenir l’amertume et la dérision. »
L’audace du docteur, par ce discours frappée,
Demeura sans réplique à ma prosopopée.
Il sortit tout à coup, et, murmurant tout bas
Quelques termes d’aigreur que je n’entendis pas,
S’en alla chez Binsfeld, ou chez Basile Ponce[10],
Sur l’heure à mes raisons chercher une réponse.
 
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Offline Bernadette

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2178 on: September 07, 2019, 09:07:59 AM »
Getting ready to start Revelations of Divine Love (Oxford World's Classics edition). I listened to it years ago, and found it uplifting, so hopefully reading it will be a helpful experience right now.
"Make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is come to life again; he was lost, and is found."
 

Offline GloriaPatri

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2179 on: September 08, 2019, 05:51:15 PM »
I'm about to begin rereading The Second Apocalypse series by R. Scott Bakker. If you like fantasy novels with interesting philosophical themes woven throughout I'd definitely recommend it. It's also one of those series that can, and should, be reread multiple times if you want to get the most out of it.
 

Offline rosenley

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2180 on: September 09, 2019, 02:14:48 AM »
"The Long Loneliness" by Dorothy Day.
"And I live, now not I; but Christ liveth in me. And that I live now in the flesh: I live in the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and delivered himself for me." (Galatians 2:20)

"Give them according to their works, and according to the wickedness of their inventions. According to the works of their hands give thou to them: render to them their reward." (Psalm 27:4)

"A man has free choice to the extent that he is rational."
"It is proper for man to be inclined to act according to reason."
"Human salvation demands the divine disclosure of truths surpassing reason."
"To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible." - St. Thomas Aquinas
 

Offline red solo cup

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2181 on: September 10, 2019, 07:51:24 AM »
The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
"It's so lonely 'round the fields of Athenry"
 

Offline Bernadette

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2182 on: September 10, 2019, 07:56:05 AM »
The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

I have this, but haven't read it (as with so many of my books). Do you like it? Is it easy to follow?
"Make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is come to life again; he was lost, and is found."
 

Offline Gardener

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2183 on: September 10, 2019, 07:59:44 AM »
Louis de Wohl's Set All Afire, about St. Francis Xavier
"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe

Providence is a present mystery by which our hope is confirmed and our faith solidified, if we give not into despair or disbelief.
 
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Offline red solo cup

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2184 on: September 10, 2019, 11:27:57 AM »
The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

I have this, but haven't read it (as with so many of my books). Do you like it? Is it easy to follow?
Yes I enjoyed it. It's very easy to follow. It seemed pretty accurate. I don't usually care for most modern fiction but this held my interest...which is good because the book is 989 pages.
"It's so lonely 'round the fields of Athenry"
 
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Offline Philip G.

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2185 on: September 18, 2019, 11:21:45 PM »
Louis de Wohl's Set All Afire, about St. Francis Xavier

I am currently reading his David of Jerusalem book.  I haven't read set all afire yet.   
For the stone shall cry out of the wall; and the timber that is between the joints of the building, shall answer.  Woe to him that buildeth a town with blood, and prepareth a city by iniquity. - Habacuc 2,11-12
 

Offline Gardener

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2186 on: September 18, 2019, 11:33:22 PM »
It’s very good. Makes me think of our own poster Xavier, and the flame which burns within him for the souls of his countrymen.
"And what use are the victories on the battlefield if we are ourselves are defeated in our innermost personal selves?" - St. Maximilian Kolbe

Providence is a present mystery by which our hope is confirmed and our faith solidified, if we give not into despair or disbelief.
 
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Offline Vetus Ordo

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2187 on: September 20, 2019, 03:39:31 PM »
I'm thinking about ordering this one:



In Muhammad and the Empires of Faith, Sean W. Anthony demonstrates how reading non-Muslim and Muslim sources in tandem with a critical eye can breathe new life into the historical study of Muhammad and the world that his message transformed. By placing these sources within the intellectual and cultural world of Late Antiquity, Anthony offers a fresh assessment of the earliest sources for Muhammad’s life, taking readers on a grand tour of the available evidence, and suggests what new insights stand to be gained from the techniques and methods pioneered by countless scholars over the decades in a variety of fields. Muhammad and the Empires of Faith offers both an authoritative introduction to the multilayered traditions surrounding the life of Muhammad and a compelling exploration of how these traditions interacted with the broader landscape of Late Antiquity.
DISPOSE OUR DAYS IN THY PEACE, AND COMMAND US TO BE DELIVERED FROM ETERNAL DAMNATION, AND TO BE NUMBERED IN THE FLOCK OF THINE ELECT.
 

Offline Prayerful

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2188 on: September 20, 2019, 05:01:55 PM »
Had read Jonathan Clements. Christ's Samurai which recounts first the mainly Portuguese Jesuit mission, its suppression, and finally rebellion by both persecuted and over-taxed Catholics, and others were similarly over-taxed, under the leadership of sorts, of the youthful Jerome Amakusa. Nagasaki was briefly granted to the Jesuits, but Rome warned the mission that they were not to divest themselves of that. It switches between the past with the rebellion, the more recent past where hidden Christians were discovered reciting the distorted by sincerely recited Pater Noster. The Shogunate was thorough in its persecution, and while Christianity was not eliminated among the Japanese, almost books were lost, priests martyred or expelled with people having to stamp on sacred images and register with a temple on pain of severe, lethal punishment. It also switches to the present at points where Jerome Amakusa became a symbol of disaffected youth, and a local tourist draw.

Padre Pio: Pray, hope, and don't worry. Worry is useless. God is merciful and will hear your prayer.
 

Offline Michael Wilson

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #2189 on: September 22, 2019, 05:03:51 PM »
Columbine, by Dave Cullen; a really intense read. Mr. Cullen's research into the boy's lives and the tapes and dairy's that they left behind as well as tapping into the research of the F.B.I. Psychologist that headed the team that investigated their motives, as well as a vivid account of their plans and attack on the school, makes for a very fascinating book. I keep fantasizing on how I would stop them from perpetrating their horrible crime.
Here is a review from Amazon:
Quote
If you want straightforward, factual information on the murders at Columbine High School, this is the book you want to read. It presents the facts and debunks many of the myths, but it also explains where the myths and misconceptions originated from. A lot of reviewers of this book disliked the way Cullen told the story by going back and forth between the day of the killings and the events leading up to April 20, 1999, but I thought it was a unique way to present the information. A lot of books written about events such as this tend to lead with all the background information and it can cause the reader to get bored. By weaving the background within the story of the killings, it kept me engaged in the story. This book also tackled the Cassie Bernall/Valeen Schnurr mix-up in a way that clarifies what happened without degrading Cassie Bernall, her family or those who still consider Cassie Bernall a martyr. This book also devotes a lot of effort into understanding the thought processes of both Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold. Many other accounts I've read simply label Harris as a psychopath and Klebold as a "follower" or "sidekick" This book has more insight on Harris and Klebold than any other account I've read. It also explores the law enforcement cover-up of their knowledge about Eric Harris's bomb experimentation and his history of violent threats. A must-read for anyone looking to know the truth about what happened and to understand what can be done to prevent these attacks in the future.
"The World Must Conform to Our Lord and not He to it." Rev. Dennis Fahey CSSP

"My brothers, all of you, if you are condemned to see the triumph of evil, never applaud it. Never say to evil: you are good; to decadence: you are progess; to death: you are life. Sanctify yourselves in the times wherein God has placed you; bewail the evils and the disorders which God tolerates; oppose them with the energy of your works and your efforts, your life uncontaminated by error, free from being led astray, in such a way that having lived here below, united with the Spirit of the Lord, you will be admitted to be made but one with Him forever and ever: But he who is joined to the Lord is one in spirit." Cardinal Pie of Potiers
 
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