Thursday, August 22, 2002

A few randomish thoughts today.

I wrote about marriage and marital obedience a few weeks ago. One more thought on that. Any husband who uses the power of Ephesians for his own comfort has abused the power. The purpose of saying “the husband is the head of the family” (and please note, I did not in fact say that) is not so Daddy can get what he wants. If you are entrusted with authority, use it carefully. It is there for you to make decisions about the good of the FAMILY, not the DADDY.
One of the things the Church teaches about marriage is that the husband and wife form a spiritual bond, that is unbreakable in a valid marriage (and never formed in an invalid one). This sometimes seems high metaphysical mumbo jumbo to me. On the other hand, Sally and I routinely send and receive “messages” to each other. I will be at the store, and think “Boy, those muffins look tasty today,” and buy half a dozen. When I get home, Sally will ask “Did you get my ‘message’ to buy muffins?” Or I will think “Ooh, tomorrow is street-cleaning day. Sally needs to park on the other side of the street.” When she gets home she will tell me she remembered about the time I was thinking that. You can call this whatever you want, but it happens often enough that I have to think there’s something to all this teaching. Imagine that.

There are a number of members of “St. Blog’s” who have been extraordinarily stand-up people over the past few weeks. I will be thanking them more specifically and publicly in a few more weeks, when the uncertainties of the moment have crystallized. But you know who you are, and Sally and I are tremendously grateful to you.

In matters of sexual teachings I am perhaps at my least orthodox as a Catholic. This will not be a blog that takes most of those issues on, because I have gotten to my heterdoxy the hard way, by study, prayer and thought, and I don’t want to give anyone a short cut to that. (In spite of a few brief flings with controversy at the outset of “Kairos” I now think that what I do best here is stay out of controversial subjects and try instead to explain complicated ones simply.) But let me say this about most sexual heterodoxy: Stop it. Those who deny for their own convenience the truth that there is absolute truth about sexuality would reduce us to animals. The Judeo-Christian tradition is about elevating mere flesh and bone, and acknowledging a power to be more than smart reptiles. If you start running around suggesting that our sexuality doesn’t count, then you are going to have to make exceptions in other areas, and pretty soon we’re all just monkeys again. And I can think of no more pathetic state for humanity than that.


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