The Classics and Christianity

By |2019-01-11T15:44:57-05:00January 11th, 2019|

Christians invented the classical curriculum; it is as much part of the broader Western inheritance as it is specifically part of the Christian inheritance… Why study old books? How do dusty old books written by dead men and women thousands of years ago grow my faith? Such can be common thoughts when the Christian [...]

What, Then, Is Time?

By |2019-02-25T14:29:59-05:00January 7th, 2019|

When our dean asked me to lecture this September it was because I’ve just completed a book on time, and I’m happy to have the opportunity to talk about it. There seemed to be three possible kinds of profit that I figured might come to you and to me if I gave what one might [...]

Family, Love, and Tragedy in “The Godfather”

By |2019-04-07T17:32:11-05:00November 22nd, 2018|

The Godfather is the Augustinian film par excellence–though it does not conclude where Augustine's vision ends... The Godfather, by Mario Puzo, was the best-selling book when it was first published and the film adaptation by Francis Ford Coppola is rightly considered a masterpiece. The drama of The Godfather is an epic; it is an epic because [...]

Virtue and the City

By |2019-02-18T02:41:53-05:00November 18th, 2018|

Virtue is what the good city aims to achieve as part of the common good. Since humans are social animals and creatures of actions, the call to cultivate virtue within civil society is a fundamental aspect of the good society and the good regime... Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords our readers the [...]

Saint Augustine’s “Confessions”: An Introduction

By |2018-10-15T20:53:00-05:00October 13th, 2018|

Augustine is accessible and applicable because he is one of us. He suffers from the same temptations and succumbs to those temptations. He falls and does not always get up again, preferring to wallow in the gutter with his lusts and his illicit appetites. And yet, like us, he is restless until he rests in [...]

The Augustine Option: A Third Way?

By |2018-09-08T22:36:36-05:00September 8th, 2018|

If we are indeed witnessing the nadir of American politics—or at least its accelerating decline—we should listen closely to Augustine. The “Augustine Option,” meaning a life lived in the final years of Rome, can offer key insights into how we should understand and address these tumultuous times... To the continued debate over whether religious Americans [...]

Is Plato’s Feverish City Good?

By |2018-07-15T22:56:11-05:00July 15th, 2018|

We suffer from bifurcation and interior dividedness because our souls are disordered. This is crippling to our souls, but it is also good. Why? It is only when we are deathly ill that we can finally come to see that we are in need of healing… The eminent political philosopher James V. Schall, S.J. [...]

Augustine’s “Confessions” Unpacked

By |2018-12-09T08:42:02-05:00June 9th, 2018|

Augustine’s Confessions is first and foremost a prayer to God. Indeed, unless we read it as a prayer, we will not understand it; we will only study it… I Burned for Your Peace: Augustine’s Confessions Unpacked, by Peter Kreeft (240 pages, Ignatius Press, 2016) Back in 1990, I had the rare privilege of teaching [...]

Does Love Always Lead to Suffering?

By |2019-03-11T14:25:07-05:00March 21st, 2018|

Much of suffering is an impenetrable mystery. But to a limited degree, we are able to understand suffering if we can come to understand what love is… Pope John Paul II, in Salvifici Doloris, writes, “Sacred Scripture is a great book about suffering.”[1] He then quotes the Old Testament to illustrate the spectrum of human suffering: [...]

Fanaticism: Distorting Humanity?

By |2018-12-21T07:18:10-05:00March 12th, 2018|

In his narrow pursuit of one ruling idea, the fanatic ignores the greater world surrounding him and blinds himself to the rest of reality… Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords our readers the opportunity to join Mitchell Kalpakgian as he explores the nature of the fanatic and how fanaticism is incompatible with [...]

The Emotions: A Primer

By |2019-03-26T15:39:48-05:00February 19th, 2018|

Although the potential range of emotional experience is essentially the same in all human beings, each culture exhibits its own patterns, inculcating certain feelings while discouraging others, promoting either expression or restraint, and defining variously the place of the emotions in everyday life… Americans believe that every person’s interior life is unique; consequently, an [...]

Awaiting the King: Developing a Christian Imagination

By |2019-01-04T06:53:25-05:00January 6th, 2018|

The church needs to ensure it is offering the true account of reality, rather than the account that the world is offering. That account, expressed through liturgy and worship, will form the Christian political imagination… Awaiting the King: Reforming Public Theology by James K.A. Smith (256 pages, Baker Academic, 2017) The present historical moment is [...]

In the Beginning Was the Word

By |2017-11-04T07:31:54-05:00November 3rd, 2017|

If we do not understand words, through the apprehension and comprehension of their definitions, we cannot even begin to understand the wonders and glories of the cosmos that the Word Himself has brought forth… It seems that Mark Malvasi, in his latest essay on these pages, seeks to continue what he calls our “gentlemanly [...]