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.


Friday, April 21, 2017

"It was never allowed to be enough of a success to be properly called a failure."

[Chesterton, writing in the aftermath of WWI, but which seems applicable in a large degree a century later as well, and something for the Church to keep in mind...]

[...] any good movement will do most good not by embracing the world, but by attacking the world. If it is to end by converting everybody, it must not begin by including everybody.

The modern world was not made by its religion, but rather in spite of its religion. Religion has produced evils of its own; but the special evils which we now suffer began with its breakdown. Nor do I mean religion merely in an ideal, but strictly in a historical sense. The cruel competition of classes went with the abandonment of charity- not merely of the primitive theory of charity, but of the medieval practice of charity. The colossal evil of cosmopolitan finance came with a new toleration of usury. The Prussian superman, the supreme product of modern immoralism, arose through a denial not merely of the mystical humility of Christian saints, but of the ordinary modesty of Christian men. The wickedness that led up to the war may be called, if anyone likes to put it so, the failure of Christianity. But it was it's failure to rule, not its failure to rule well. It was never allowed to be enough of a success to be properly called a failure. All the actual causes- Colonial expansion, scientific warfare, industrial development, racial theories, even journalism- were all things which the modern mind has made in its reaction from the old religion [...] It has not made modernity- it has not that on its conscience. Its only spiritual justification, and its obvious social strategy, is to attack modernity. It ought to show, as it really could show, that social evils have not come from its presence, but rather from its absence. So far from insisting on its power, it ought rather to insist on its impotence. So far from claiming to be obeyed, it ought to claim to have been disobeyed. So far from assuming indefinite numbers of men as belonging to it, it ought to note the enormous numbers of men who fail by not belonging to it. In short, to recur to the original text, it ought not to be content with all the people who will consent or condescend to call themselves something. It ought to lead them into the way of truth. For any movement to do this, of course, is it necessary for it to have a truth to lead them to.
-July 12, 1919, Illustrated London News

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