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)

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"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.




Monday, April 29, 2013

"...sin is in a man's soul and not in his tools or his toys"

Compulsion is the highly modern mark of a great many modern things; compulsory education, compulsory insurance, compulsory temperance, and soon, perhaps, compulsory arbitration. What is not so often noted is that even where we may think it necessary, it is never vital, in the sense of dealing with the life and soul of the subject. ..[Many modern reforms] in this and other countries...are wide, but they are shallow. Prohibition is a wild and sweeping change; but it is the very reverse of a fundamental change. It is not a revolutionary or even a radical reform. It is by definition the opposite of radical, because it refuses to go to the root. It is like the wide sweep of a walking-stick which would knock off the heads of countless poppies or thistles, while leaving their roots in the ground to grow again. It is this combination of the sweeping with the superficial of which the soul is impatience, especially intellectual impatience...It would be easy to imagine an Arabian romance about a Sultan whose Grand Vizier had his throat cut by his barber; and who immediately forbade razors throughout the length and breadth of his empire. He would be doing something on a large, imperial scale worthy of the size of his empire. But he would hardly be attacking the deepest causes of the discontent of that empire. He would hardly be discovering, for instance, why the barber had killed the Grand Vizier. He would be unduly elated with the mere discovery of how the barber had killed him. Then when he has carefully excluded all razors, he will be very much surprised when the next Grand Vizier is killed with a red-hot poker. He will be still more surprised to find that an increasing number of his critics have passed from razors to red-hot pokers, as an increasing number of Americans are passing from drink to drugs. Thus slowly will that Sultan...begin to have a glimmering of the great first principle of practical politics; that the sin is in a man's soul and not in his tools or his toys; and that in so far as his soul is affected by them, it is affected by all of them, and not by one in unique and unearthly isolation.

-June 5, 1920, Illustrated London News

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