PARADOXICAL

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Friday, April 05, 2013

 

Chesteron's The Everlasting Man: Introduction


What have I gotten myself into?

Just to read through the intro, I first had to skip it hoping I'd get into the groove once I had acclimatized myself with Chesterton's kilometric sentences and paragraphs and often challengingly (but perhaps necessarily) convoluted thoughts in the first two chapters. Well, I succeeded this time after maybe a couple of attempts in the past.

Maybe all I needed was a challenge, like the one posed by Stef. Maybe I just needed other people to be with me while reading this challenging material, which is my first-ever Chesterton. I think what really got me is that one of Stef's teenage sons has finished TEM -- and he is what, 16? I was like, if he can hack it, so can I, can't I? Tee-hee.

I'm surprised to find myself laughing. I was hoping the reflections would be more spiritual, but no, TEM seems to be 100% apologetics. What was I expecting anyway -- it's Chesterton, for Pete's sake. I'll take the challenge anyway, if only because I will be assured of one hilarious laugh or two every page or two, for a wry sense of humor is a Chestertonian stamp.

Honestly, I see a lot of myself in this big guy, not that I am trying to align myself with him -- far from it. I see myself in him in the sense that I go that mocking direction whenever I sense tremendous stupidity anywhere, or to sound current, whenever my BS meter senses something is off. The difference with this famous author is the lengths he goes to just to explain away in detail why a given idea is terribly, completely stupid. What a guy! I bow down to his patience, his discipline, which are requirements of his erudition.



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