Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Society: A Conundrum


Aside from the glaring typo in this quote of unknown origin, I would wholeheartedly agree with this statement. Politeness is increasingly rare; for the most part it is quite frowned upon. Men on the train or any other form of public transportation don’t rise to let a lady sit. Why?

  The answer is, in part, feminism. Feminists want to be absolutely equal to men. What, a man offering me a seat? He must think me weak and inferior to him! This cannot be allowed! We women must strive for masculine strength in order to appear equal in both mind and body to men.
   This is not actually my view, but my view is not quite the opposite of the above one. Women and men should be complements to one another; the strength of men to the gentleness of women, a man’s height to a woman’s smaller stature, et cetera. After all, if we look back all the way to Genesis, we will see that man and woman were literally made for each other. Adam could not survive without Eve so God saw it fit to make her.

   Unfortunately, people today have really forgotten almost everything represented in Genesis. All they seem to see is some sort of vague, indefinable inequality between the sexes when really no such inequality is, in fact, present. The main notion of most people today is that men are generally perceived as better leaders, fighters, doers, and such things. Well? What is so bad about that? Is there anything bad about it? Women can do an awful lot of things men can’t do. Women are better home-makers. They also feel more, perhaps, than men do. Men act directly on impulse whereas women wait, and think it out first.

  This, of course, happens to be yet another good reason for the cause of traditional marriage, e.g., one man and one woman. The two will balance each other out, helping one another to act to the best of their abilities and create a good home for their potential children. Same sex marriage will not accomplish this in any way whatsoever. Besides being absolutely unnatural and totally wrong, it is not real in the eyes of the Church and has been condemned by God. But it has been accepted and lauded from the rooftops by the government as a very good and even honourable way to live. After all, it doesn’t matter what the Church thinks so long as we all can be with whoever we please, right?

  Wrong. We should certainly not have to cave to what society would have us do and believe about everything. That is how we became the way we are today; diversity is actually nonexistent, rather than abounding as people think it to be. But I will write about the diversity issue later; back to the role of the Church in society.

  Holy Mother Church recognises the respective abilities of man and woman, which is why she has given us such good examples of holy men and women, living lives that reflect the virtues of Catholicism. Take St. Agnes, for example. She was martyred for her wish to stay pure, a wish which God, by His grace, granted to her. Hardly any young woman in today’s culture would safeguard herself unto death. If she did so, society would frown upon her as odd and old-fashioned. Why, when someone behaves wantonly, are they applauded, and when someone upholds virtue they are sneered at?

  It’s because of the radical idea of freedom. Well--perhaps not exactly freedom, for we all have our own free will, but more what one uses one’s free will for. One is expected, and all but required to use one’s will loosely, to just go about and satisfy worldly desires instead of tempering one’s feelings to suit not oneself, but the wishes of God.  

   Anyway, the lack of the understanding of men and women in society has brought low traditional marriage, and perhaps has even sped on the Supreme Court to its fatal decision of last week. Thankfully, there are still quite a few of us so-called “Traditionalists” who are still following the Church, even though that is of course a very archaic, (one might even say a medieval) thing to be doing. But it is a very good thing to be doing, because gradually there appear to be fewer and fewer people doing it, and this is exactly why it is unfashionable. A thing has to be fashionable to be in any way emulated by popular society, and hardly anything old-fashioned is popular.

  So, to revisit the intended topic of this bit of writing; men, be strong and polite. Women, be virtuous and kind. And, everybody, support the Church as an example of virtue in an age where virtue is falling into the gutter.

Maura Tuffy

Sunday, June 28, 2015

The Importance of Chivalry



“The motto of chivalry is also the motto of wisdom; to serve all, but love only one.”
----Honore de Balzac

   Really? Wow! I wish I lived in a time where this chivalry thing existed more widely! Today’s motto of wisdom might be rewritten as, “to serve oneself, and love only oneself.”
   You see, most people who really ought to be practising chivalry are instead being very selfish. They have little to no respect for what is left of the good, the true, and the beautiful. They are drawn irresistibly to the perverted and wrong. They seek it out and (incredible to comprehend) seem to thrive on it. All they have at heart is their own self-interest. Why? When did we change from noble knights and gracious ladies into selfish pigs without so much as a thought for others?  

  Under ‘Nobility’ on the Code of Chivalry, we see ‘Respect Women.’ What? Respect? How old fashioned! Today’s young men would not be caught dead respecting their female friends, if they are even lucky enough to have any real ones. You will never hear a boy telling a girl she looks pretty. Oh no. Instead will be heard all manner of other words, (e.g., the infamous “hot”) which, though are meant to be flattering in today’s society, are actually very disrespectful. There is no idolisation of virtue. There is no talk of beauty, of purity. There is no decency.

   But, nevertheless, there should be. Chivalric virtues are important for men, and to women. Respect is, in a way, a kind of attention. To be respectful to anybody, you must acknowledge them and speak to them. This is paying them something we all seek, in one form or another, and it is attention. Attention is sought after instead of respect. Respect has evolved into attention, sadly, and oftentimes the methods employed to gain attention are downright sad. For example, having a lewd mouth, a lot of touching, immodest dress--it would be ridiculous, if it weren’t pathetically sad.

  What’s even more ridiculous, though, is that this kind of behaviour has become the norm for so many. Girls today think attention is absolutely the thing to be getting from a guy, no matter what the attentions may be, or how those attentions are attained. And those guys know that girls are just hanging on their every action, waiting for a word or look.

   When did all this happen, and why? I do not know. But one thing I am sure of; real friendship between boys and girls is very important. Many friendships are tainted, but if one strives for the good, the true, and the beautiful, you will be someone who anybody with sense would be proud to call a friend.

  So, what to do? There seems nothing is to be done. Nothing can change all the boys and all the girls in the world. But we can change ourselves. We can be kind to one another. We can help people in difficulty. This is a good thing to do, and goodness is key in a world gone bad. And if people see us changing, maybe they will want to emulate us. Inside every person is a wish for good. And the best way to propagate that good is by showing examples of kindness to our friends and family.  

Maura Tuffy

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

The Three Theological Virtues; Faith, Hope, and...


“Three Hail Marys for the three Theological Virtues of Faith, Hope, and Love--”
“It’s actually Charity, pet.”
“I thought it was Love...we used to say Love...”
“But Charity means so much more than Love. Don’t you think so?”

I am not one to kick up a fuss simply over one, small, simple word in a great Rosary, which gives glory to the Blessed Mother no matter if one says Charity or Love, but this particular word I happen to have quite set ideas about, so I do not think that Charity should be used instead of Love. Despite charity being a rather archaic word (and I do love archaic words and use them often) I believe Love to better fit as the third and last Theological Virtue.  

  This point may be argued. The Greek word agape translates to mean both charity and love, but those two words are very, very, different. Here is my opinion on the matter.

  You see, charity is defined, typically, as ‘the voluntary giving of help, typically in the form of money, to those in need.’ While this is undoubtedly a very laudable and Catholic practice--why else, after all, are there charity boxes in our churches--love in fact does have a much deeper meaning.

  Charity is being kind. It is being nice to people, whether you like it or not. It is patience. It is also respect. It is putting up, perhaps, with an annoying sibling. It is saying sorry first. You can put money in the poor box just because your conscience tells you you should, but there will be not a spark of love when that kind of charity is the reason. There are many more things that charity is, also, but there is one thing that it is most definitely not; charity is not love, hence the two words cannot be interchanged.

  Love is all that charity is and more. Charity is being nice to people whether you like it or not, but love is being nice to them anyway, without even thinking of yourself. Love is in and of itself a kind of charity. To quote St. Paul, 1 Corinthians 13.13, “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

The greatest indeed of these is love. Love is giving yourself selflessly. It is the ultimate form of charity. God gave us Jesus, who was Himself God. Can there be anything more loving than giving yourself to save mankind? Love is so much more than charity. We should pray to love our friends and families as much as God loves us. When we attain that love, then we can hope to have gained true charity also. And what better way than to pray for Faith, Hope, and Love? For there can be charity without love, but never can there be love without charity.

Maura Tuffy