Heresy of Isolation

The Creator’s Gift of Union in a World Fallen Apart

As I write these words, I am informed that it is International Woman’s Day, and of course that means that in advertisements and notices and celebrations, you will not find a shadow of the men who make possible this day, or any day at all, by providing the commodities we take for granted, such as food and shelter. I do not envy the feminists their day. They disappoint me.

It seems to me sometimes that all the heresies of the modern Christian church and all of our nightmares of social utopianism have at their heart a reversal of the first words of evaluation we hear directly from God in Genesis. They all say, in one fashion or another, that isolation, in principle, is good, and the fact that they usually say this in the name of sociality is but another instance of man’s capacity to delude himself with words and with idols of his own fashioning. Thus could sociable man carve out that great image of human brotherhood, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, with every man suspicious of every other, and the destruction of your life one soft knock on the door away.


Anthony Esolen is Distinguished Professor of Humanities at Thales College and the author of over 30 books, including Real Music: A Guide to the Timeless Hymns of the Church (Tan, with a CD), Out of the Ashes: Rebuilding American Culture (Regnery), and The Hundredfold: Songs for the Lord (Ignatius). He has also translated Dante’s Divine Comedy (Random House) and, with his wife Debra, publishes the web magazine Word and Song ( He is a senior editor of Touchstone.

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