The Flame of Civilization: Fahrenheit 451 and the Preservation of Western Culture

“Play the man, Master Ridley; we shall this day light a such a candle, by God’s grace, in England, as I trust shall never be put out.”  An old woman strikes a match and drops it on her kerosene-soaked books while the firemen stare in horror.  This is the America promised us in Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, where the printed book is banned because it … Continue reading The Flame of Civilization: Fahrenheit 451 and the Preservation of Western Culture

Between Earth and Sky: The Physicality of Intellectual and Spiritual Growth

I went wilderness canoe camping for the first time the summer after my tenth birthday; it is family tradition to mark this birthday with a trek to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness on the northern border of Minnesota. Since that trip, I’ve been up there a handful of times, most recently this last July. My experience in the Boundary Waters resonated with a question … Continue reading Between Earth and Sky: The Physicality of Intellectual and Spiritual Growth

America on the Precipice: Why 2020 Truly is a Seminal Election

“This is the most important election of your lives!” This claim has been repeated almost ad nauseam, to the point of being nearly meaningless. How many times have you heard this in the span of the average election cycle? Perhaps even more revealing is the number of elections you have heard this said about. Because of its frequent usage, this claim likely elicits a skeptical … Continue reading America on the Precipice: Why 2020 Truly is a Seminal Election

Berlioz’s Song: A Brief Dialogue on Love and Wanting

Berlioz’s Song: A Brief Dialogue on Love and Wanting Persons: François-the Cynic, and composer Hector Berlioz-the Romantic The Scene: The deck of a ferry, crossing the English Channel to Britain. January, 1831. THE CYNIC. Pardon me, sir, I don’t mean to interrupt your writing, but are you Hector Berlioz? THE ROMANTIC. Ah, yes, I am. Always a pleasure to meet an admirer, please sit down! … Continue reading Berlioz’s Song: A Brief Dialogue on Love and Wanting

Mythical Samizdat

Mythology has long allowed cultures to connect with and find meaning in their past, encouraged them to work in the present, and taught them to hope for their future. By grounding individuals in their environment and tying them to their community, myth served as the grounding for nearly all cultures and civilizations throughout the Ancient and pre-Modern world. Myth teaches morals, and a civilization without … Continue reading Mythical Samizdat

The Surrender of Plot: Uncovering the Divinity of Storytelling

I stood in the bookstore, gaping at the vibrant colors and whimsical text scrawled across hardcover book jackets. Each book made a pretty picture on the shelf, but after years of book store prowling, I knew that few, if any, offered much beyond aesthetic. I wandered into the classics section and ran my hand along the spines of compendiums, comprehensive volumes, and special editions. What … Continue reading The Surrender of Plot: Uncovering the Divinity of Storytelling