Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Remembering for the wrong reasons
The great thing about traditionalism is that it has a good memory. The bad thing about it is that it remembers the wrong things. It has forgotten why it should remember in the first place.
Why? Well that is the problem... It doesn't ask the question "why"?
It seems that many people throw out their brains for denial purposes. I think the dominant mindset says something like, "If I think, I'll find that my faith is not true and have to face the idea that it is just my crutch."
With that said, I think this is an ill-formed opinion. Reason necessitates its own limitations. It is reason that says that the earth doesn't revolve around me, i.e., their are truths that exist outside of my ability to know them. To believe in such things would therefore require faith. But such faith can be informed.
For instance, we believe that the universe is expanding not because we can directly see it expanding, but rather because we can see a red doppler shift in the light spectrum of the cosmos. And just because we can't even begin to imagine what it is expanding into, or what is beyond space, doesn't mean that we can't believe in the expansion.
"He alone stretches out the heavens..." - Job 9:8
Traditionalist Christians have (and still do among many Catholics) conducted their worship entirely in a dead Latin language that died with the Roman empire. Why? If they even ask this question, how can they come up with any other answer except, "because that's what we've ALWAYS done."
"An unexamined life is not worth living" - Socrates
Question your traditions. If they have outlived their purposes, why not throw them out? This is not a repudiation of traditionalism. On the contrary, traditionalism tied to purpose, is to be lauded.
"Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it. " - George Santayana
Traditionalism tied to purpose says, "Remember, so we don't repeat the same mistakes our others before us have."
THAT is why we remember. THAT is the purpose of traditionalism.
"Tradition means giving votes to the most obscure of all classes, our ancestors. It is the democracy of the dead." - G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy