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Commonplaces

Piquant excerpts lifted from Touchstone editors' own reading & listening.



cannot myself imagine a more fearful fate for our species than that they should so habituate themselves to their earthly circumstances as to be finally contented with them, or a more sublime one than that they should continue till the end of time to peer into the distance after the land that is very far off. In my early days this sense of being a stranger was closely related to political zealotry; the Left is for strangers, who persuade themselves that the causes they espouse are on behalf of the weak against the strong, of the poor against the rich. In my case, enlightenment came dramatically in the course of a journalistic stint in Moscow. The spectacle of all my heroes abasing themselves before a great tyrant, and purporting to justify all his doings and his works cured me of hero worship forever. . . . It was not just that a particular regime had been discredited in my eyes, and a particular set of hopes and desires shown to heaven fraudulent. The whole notion of progress died on me, and I saw our way of life based on it as crazy and hollow—getting richer and stronger and wiser, moving faster and farther, pursuing happiness ever more avidly, and leading all mankind into the same pursuit, which in the end turns out to be a fantasy, a death wish.

Malcolm Muggeridge
Jesus Rediscovered (1969)


Christianity Commonplaces #137 July/August 2022

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