Tuesday, June 28, 2022

"strength to maintain the truth against every blast of vain doctrine"

"Deus, qui beato Irenaeo Martyri tuo atque Pontifici tribuisti, ut et veritate doctrinae expugnaret haereses, et pacem Ecclesiae feliciter confirmaret:  da, quaesumus, plebi tuae in sancta religione constantiam; et pacem tuam nostris concede temporibus.  Per"

O God, who have assigned to your blessed martyr and bishop Irenaeus that he both by the truth of doctrine subdue heresies and successfully establish the peace of the Church:  give to your people constancy in holy religion, and grant your peace in our times.  Through.

     Collect for the feast of St. Irenaeus, 28 June, Tridentine Missal and Breviary, translation (which could use some improvement) mine.  This is stronger than the revised collect of the post-Vatican II Missal, but to be honest, I like the paraphrase in Holy women, holy men:  celebrating the saints (2010; formerly Lesser feasts and fasts) even better:

Almighty God, who didst uphold thy servant Irenaeus with strength to maintain the truth against every blast of vain doctrine:  Keep us, we beseech thee, steadfast in thy true religion, that in constancy and peace we may walk in the way that leadeth to eternal life; through.

Almighty God, you upheld your servant Irenaeus with strength to maintain the truth against every blast of vain doctrine:  Keep us, we pray, steadfast in your true religion, that in constancy and peace we may walk in the way that leads to eternal life; through. 

Friday, June 24, 2022

"a certain ideology of the American native"?

George Catlin, 1835/37
     "The historical evidence before us shows that only at the turn to the twentieth century does the image of the berdache as a person who might choose his lifestyle begin to appear in the (anthropological) sources.  All the previous historical evidence portrays that figure as constructed through force by parental or tribal authority. . . .
     "A second line of evidence, that gathered among the Inuit of the far north by recent and contemporary ethnographers, provides a strikingly similar picture, though here the majority of the infants chosen for inversion were girls. . . .  In both of these huge areas, the forced conversion of children into the gender opposite to their sex was determined largely by political and familial considerations, and clearly had none but a fanciful association to the alleged 'wish' of the child. . . .
     "The third line of evidence considered the tribes of the present-day United States of America, and especially those of the Prairie and Plains.  The latter nations were, we have found, marked off clearly both the Prairie nations to the east and those to their west by the fact that only in their late teens and not as children did berdaches emerge from the visions that were a characteristic trait of this area. . . .  the all-but unanimous findings of serious students of the Plains visions . . . establish . . . that the interpretation of visions among these nations was carefully monitored by family elders, secret-society heads, and the like, to legitimate and replicate preexisting social bonds:  In the end, there was little room for the notion of free choice, and it was seldom enough claimed."

     Richard C. Trexler, "Making the American berdache:  choice or constraint?," Journal of social history 35, no. 3 (Spring 2002):  628-629 (613-636)sipiniq is the Inuit term given here.  Interesting to me is the fact that sipi-/sipḷuq/sipyuq ("to change from male to female in the womb or during birth (of a fetus; mythical)") occurs in Wolf A. Seiler's Iñupiatun Eskimo dictionary of 2012, which focuses on the language of the NANA region of my childhood.  The headline is from p. 630.  How the Trexler thesis has fared in the twenty years since, I have not yet read enough of the literature to say.  (He was not primarily an Americanist after all.)

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

"'it's happening again'"

      "Judging by the historical record, when a psychic epidemic hits, doctors often feel moved to centre interventions on the female reproductive system.  Take the 'reflex doctrine' of the nineteenth century, which held that a disturbance in any part of the body could cause malfunction in any other, by a 'reflex action' of the nerves travelling via the spine.  Doctors regarded the female sex organs as particularly prone to exerting these malign influences, and removed them to treat an astonishing array of conditions:  paralysis, fits and ailments of the heart, thyroid, stomach, skin, ears and eyes.  When [Jungian therapist Lisa] Marchiano realised that girls who said they felt like boys were being given drugs and surgeries that would leave them sterile, at first she thought she must be misunderstanding something.  'And then I thought:  no, Lisa, this happens all the time, and it's happening again.'"

     Helen Joyce, Trans:  when ideology meets reality (London:  Oneworld, 2021), 107.  Joyce goes on to speak of the record on "multiple-personality disorder (MPD; now called dissociative identity disorder) and recovered-memory syndrome" (108 ff.).  Marchiano:  "'Jungians know that to concretise something symbolic is a very bad idea'" (106).  Unfortunately, Joyce doesn't cite anything by Marchiano, not even an interview.  (Also, she treats elsewhere the problems with the untransitioned sheer assertion now so characteristic of late "gender-identity ideology.")

May hope make its appeal to the promises of God

Instead, while the sun sheds [(conficit, produces) the light of] day, | may a profound faith be ignited [in us], | may hope make [its] appeal to the promises [of God], | may charity unite [us] in love [(conjugat)] with Christ.

Sed sol diem dum conficit,
fides profunda ferveat,
spes ad promissa provocet,
Christo coniungat caritas.

     Stanza 5 of Fulgentis auctor aetheris, an anonymous 5th- or 6th-century hymn, as reproduced (and dated) in Universalis.  "Instead, while the sun confects day".  I have not done any further research, but the translation in One hundred Latin hymns:  Ambrose to Aquinas (ed. and trans. Peter G. Walsh with Christopher Husch, Dumbarton Oaks medieval library (Cambridge:  Harvard University Press, 2012)), at least, seems wrong-footed in so many ways:

But when the sun shuts down the day,
Let our faith ferment deep within,
hope spur us to our promises,
and love unite us close to Christ.

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

"that we, who have not followed him in innocence, may imitate him in penance"

"O GOD, the dispenser of heavenly gifts, Who in the angelic youth Aloysius [Gonzaga] didst combine wonderful innocence of life with penance, grant by his merits and prayers that we, who have not followed him in innocence, may imitate him in penance. Through our Lord..."

"CŒLÉSTIUM donórum distribútor, Deus, qui in angélico júvene Aloísio miram vitæ innocéntiam pari cum pœniténtia sociásti: ejus méritis et précibus concéde; ut, innocéntem non secúti, pœniténtem imitémur. Per Dominum..."

     Hat tip Peter Kwasniewski.

Sunday, June 19, 2022

"the desert of this world, parched by . . . ideological . . . systems"

"Like the manna for the people of Israel, for every Christian generation the Eucharist is the indispensable nourishment that sustains them as they cross the desert of this world, parched by the ideological and economic systems that do not promote life but rather humiliate it."

     Pope Benedict XVI, Corpus Christi homily, Square in front of the Basilica of Saint John Lateran, Rome, Thursday, 7 June 2007.

Saturday, June 18, 2022

No "there" there

"Truth, we know, is so delicate that, if we make the slightest deviation from it, we fall into error; but this alleged error is so extremely finespun that, if we diverge from it in the slightest degree, we fall back upon the truth.  There is positively nothing between this obnoxious proposition and the truth but an imperceptible point.  The distance between them is so impalpable that I was in terror lest, from pure inability to perceive it, I might, in my over-anxiety to agree with the doctors of the Sorbonne, place myself in opposition to the doctors of the Church."

"La verité est si delicate, que si peu qu’on s’en retire, one tombe dans l’erreur:  mais cette erreur est si deliée, que sans mesme s’en éloigner, one se trouve dans la verité.  Il n’y a qu’un point imperceptible entre cette proposition et la foy.  La distance en est si insensible, que j’ay eü peur en ne la voyant pas, de me rendre contraire aux Docteurs de l’Eglise, pour me rendre trop conforme aux Docteurs de Sorbonne."

     Blaise Pascal, Provincial letters no. 3, trans. M'Crie (GBWW, 1st (1952) edition, vol. 33, p. 16).  =Brunschvicg Œuvres of 1904-1914, vol. 4, pp. 215-216.  It is a question here of "an imperceptible heresy" that none of "the Molinist doctors" so much as attempted to specify:

Such is the specimen of the way in which ['most people'] are giving vent to their feelings [of frustration].  But these are by far too deep-thinking people.  You and I, who make no pretension to such extraordinary penetration, may keep ourselves quite easy about the whole affair.  What!  would we be wiser than our masters?  No:  let us take example from them, and not undertake what they have not ventured upon.