A blog dedicated to providing quotes by and posts relating to one of the most influential (and quotable!) authors of the twentieth century, G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936). If you do not know much about GKC, I suggest visiting the webpage of the American Chesterton Society as well as this wonderful Chesterton Facebook Page by a fellow Chestertonian

I also have created a list detailing examples of the influence of Chesterton if you are interested, that I work on from time to time.

(Moreover, for a list of short GKC quotes, I have created one here, citing the sources)

"...Stevenson had found that the secret of life lies in laughter and humility."

-Heretics (1905)

_____________________

"The Speaker" Articles

A book I published containing 112 pieces Chesterton wrote for the newspaper "The Speaker" at the beginning of his career.

They are also available for free electronically on another blog of mine here, if you wish to read them that way.




Friday, December 14, 2012

"There is no inconsistency in ranking things in ascending order on the practical plane and equalising them on the religious plane."

Mr. Lowes Dickinson states all the various points of view with conspicuous eloquence and justice. If there is one point that we should be inclined to criticise it is his stricture upon Walt Whitman, when he quotes him as an example of the untenable optimism which equalises all things. Walt Whitman has been singularly misunderstood on this point. Surely no one imagines that he really thought that all distinctions were unmeaning, that he drank coffee and arsenic in idle alternation, and went to bed on the kitchen fire as a change from his bedstead. What he did say and mean was that there was one plane on which all things were equal, one point from which everything was the same, the point of view of unfathomable wonder at the energy of Being, the power of God. There is no inconsistency in ranking things in ascending order on the practical plane and equalising them on the religious plane.

We may take a familiar parallel. There is nothing inconsistent in saying, "For what we are about to receive the Lord make us truly thankful," and then complaining that the champagne is corked or the mutton raw. There is such a thing as a bad dinner and such a thing as a good one, and criticism is quite justified in comparing one with the other: but it remains true that both become good the moment we compare them with the hypothesis of no dinner at all. So it was with Whitman, good and bad lives became equal to him in relation to the hypothesis of no life at all. A man, let us say a soldier of the Southern Confederacy, was considered as a man, a miracle that swallowed up all moral distinctions, in the realm of religion. But in the realm of criticism, otherwise called the Battle of Gettysburg, Whitman would strain every nerve to blow the man into a thousand pieces.

-February 16, 1901, The Speaker

No comments: