Nine short chapters, according to my copy (though I didn’t blog about the introduction in this series), and here we are, at the final chapter. As I read it, I found myself wondering how Chesterton would wrap things up, tie up the ends that didn’t seem loose at all, woo me one last time with some brilliant insight.
What I found, in this chapter, was immesely quotable:
[T]he chasm between man and other creatures may have a natural explanation, but it is a chasm. … [I]t is exactly where biology leaves off that all religion begins. …
Science knows nothing whatever about prehistoric man; for the excellent reason that he is prehistoric. … There is no tradition of progress; but the whole human race has a tradition of the Fall. …
Catholic doctrine and discipline may be walls; but they are the walls of a playground.
That last statement, especially, sparks my imagination and makes me realize that what I love about being Catholic is the freedom I feel. No, it’s not the freedom of a bound person, someone in chains. Rather, it’s the dancing, jovial feeling of being loose of the weight I had thought I had to carry all by myself.
As much as I hate Confession, I know I need it. In fact, I’ve found nothing like it for the freedom I feel afterward.
As hard as it is to sit still and be silent, I find it when I spend time in Adoration. There is no comparison to the infusion of fresh air my soul feels after every hour I spend with Jesus.
The rules we so shun in our current day and age and which I’ve discovered within the Catholic Church–namely those relating to contraception and sexuality–have done more to break me free from the prison of self-hatred and doubt than anything else. The teachings that explain human nature speak to me at a level that makes my soul sing on-key and in-tune.
I am not doing justice to this chapter, but, moreso than the rest of the book, this is a chapter that struck me close to the heart. As Chesterton concludes what some call his greatest work, I find he has made me into a true fan of his writing.
He made me laugh, but he also made me think, really think. He made me shake my head, but he also gave me words and ways to logically conclude the truth.
What did you enjoy about this chapter? What struck you? Will you read more Chesterton?