Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Dies Cinerum: Ash Wednesday - It is in God's Hands.

We can, perhaps, conceive of a world in which God corrected the results of this abuse of free will by His creatures at every moment: so that a wooden beam became soft as grass when it was used as a weapon, and the air refused to obey me if I attempted to set up in it the sound waves that carry lies or insults. But such a world would be one in which wrong actions were impossible, and in which, therefore, freedom of the will would be void; nay, if the principle were carried out to its logical conclusion, evil thoughts would be impossible, for the cerebral matter which we use in thinking would refuse its task when we attempted to frame them.
Clive Staples Lewis

"Evil is threefold, viz., metaphysical evil, moral, and physical, the retributive consequence of moral guilt. Its existence subserves the perfection of the whole; the universe would be less perfect if it contained no evil. Thus fire could not exist without the corruption of what it consumes; the lion must slay the ass in order to live, and if there were no wrong doing, there would be no sphere for patience and justice. God is said (as in Isaiah 45) to be the author of evil in the sense that the corruption of material objects in nature is ordained by Him, as a means for carrying out the design of the universe; and on the other hand, the evil which exists as a consequence of the breach of Divine laws is in the same sense due to Divine appointment; the universe would be less perfect if its laws could be broken with impunity. Thus evil, in one aspect, i.e. as counter-balancing the deordination of sin, has the nature of good. But the evil of sin, though permitted by God, is in no sense due to him; its cause is the abuse of free will by angels and men. It should be observed that the universal perfection to which evil in some form is necessary, is the perfection of this universe, not of any universe: metaphysical evil, that is to say, and indirectly, moral evil as well, is included in the design of the universe which is partially known to us; but we cannot say without denying the Divine omnipotence, that another equally perfect universe could not be created in which evil would have no place."
Catholic Encyclopedia

The Democratic governor on Tuesday quietly invited death penalty opponents to a private bill-signing ceremony scheduled for late Wednesday morning in his Springfield office. Quinn's office confirmed that the governor has an event at the Capitol on Wednesday to announce his decision on the death penalty measure.
Chicago Tribune

"It's all good." Urban Dictionary

Is it?

On the other hand, I have and continue to sin - cause pain. I cause pain with my thoughts words and deeds. I neglect or I act in a way that hurts others. By hurting myself, I also hurt others. This is my season. Lent arrived today. From the time that I receive the Ashes in the Catholic ritual, following Quinquagesima Sunday (just the other day, at Sacred Heart Church)which means fifty days before Easter and Resurrection of Christ, I will attempt to remember that I am not bullet proof.

All of this means nothing to the 'It's all good' devotees. It means much to a sinner like me. Memento Mori is spoken when the priest, probably Father Tony Brackin later today at St. Odilo's in Berwyn, places the ashes on my fore head - 'Remember you must die.' That is an imperative verb followed by a deponent infinitive - active in meaning and passive in form which means that it is going to happen. Like in the DMV on Pulaski at 147th Street - 'Mr. Hickey you will be called.'

I sit there waiting with my check, my ID and my proofs of residence ( Gas and Light Bill) and understand that I will be called, baring a computer malfunction, tornado, act of war, or I decide to light up a Marlboro in the Illinois Secretary of State's facility and enjoy mellow flavor of fine rich Virginia tobacco. Then, I can expect to be taken out and summarily given the bum's rush.

I believe in Heaven and I believe in Hell and what I do to balance my actions, thoughts, and words accordingly will determine God's Bum's Rush.

It Ain't All Good; Most of It Is. Behave accordingly.

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