Written by G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy addresses foremost one main problem: How can we contrive to be at once astonished at the world and yet at home in it? Chesterton writes, "I wish to set forth my faith as particularly answering this double spiritual need, the need for that mixture of the familiar and the unfamiliar which Christendom has rightly named romance."
Chesterton likens orthodox Christianity to a man who set out in a boat from England and was quite excited to land on an island only to soon discover he had, in fact, landed on England. "I am the man who with the utmost daring discovered what had been discovered before." This is Chesterton's autobiography. It is his story of finding the familiar and unfamiliar in Christianity. It is his hunt for the gorgon or griffin and in the end discovers a rhinoceros and then takes pleasure in the fact that a rhinoceros exists but looks as if it oughtn't.
In Orthodoxy, Chesterton argues that people in Western society need a life of "practical romance, the combination of something that is strange with something that is secure. We need so to view the world as to combine an idea of wonder and an idea of welcome." Drawing on such figures as Fra Angelico, George Bernard Shaw, and St. Paul to make his points, Chesterton argues that submission to ecclesiastical authority is the way to achieve a good and balanced life.
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"Whenever I feel my fiath going dry again, I wander to a shelf and pick up a book by G. K. Chesterton." (Philip Yancey)
G.K. is undoubtedly an intellectual Titan. New and empty philosophies he squashes like flies. With extreme clarity, he bullies his way into your admiration with his sharp insights. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
it's an apologetic work, but it doesn't read, or rather "listen" like an apologetic work. firstly because it focuses on a set of realities and experiences instead of high complex logical equasions that are valid, but may or may not be sound. secondly because it is not an argument for "God" but for "christianity". arguing for "God" devoid of any way of knowing, loving, or communicating with him is pointless. even if one suceeds, it makes no real difference. Chesterton does not attempt to make you think that Paris is a real place, but to get you on the plane to Paris by telling you about his trip. the fact that paris is real is assumed and you will learn it once you get on the plane.
I think that this is the reason why i like this book, it is much more a story of discovery than a defence. whether you think him right or wrong this book will give you insight into how he as a christian feels about God and the world. you may be suprised by how much he will laugh with you.
I expected more inside. Perhaps I am too stupid to understand his use of language and, his circular academia. I know God is God and am sad when people say they cannot believe in God. You see, as soon as they deny his existence they confirm their belief in a God.
Chesterton is timeless. The reading by John Lee was excellent in most parts, especially in the final chapters. But he was a bit sing-songy in the first few chapters which I found distracting. Nevertheless, this is well worth the listen.
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