Tag: medieval

Christian Humanist Profiles 167: Introducing Medieval Interpretation

Perhaps no era of biblical interpretation is less appreciated than the Middle Ages. After all, weren’t the medievals at best just perpetuators of patristic readings, and at worst the most unbounded and fantastic of allegorists? If the scholars of the Middle Ages are recovered these days, it is usually for their mystically- or philosophically-inflected theologies,…

Christian Humanist Profiles 139: Honey of Souls

In the early 6th century, darkness was falling on the Rome’s Western Empire. Old Rome was waning, barbarians sat on the imperial throne, and smouldering tension with the Byzantine Eastern Empire threatened to explode at any moment. In this time of crisis, a man from an old Italian family, trained in orthodox Christianity and classical…

Christian Humanist Profiles 119: Saint Columban and His Rule

In 590 AD, seven years before Augustine of Canterbury would venture over to Britain, St. Columban crossed the channel the other direction to Gaul. Columban was an Irish monk, a scholar of Bangor Abbey, that great center of monastic learning. With faithful companions, he set out on a mission to spread the Irish monastic way…

Christian Humanist Profiles 89: Medieval Wisdom for Modern Christians

For a while now, there’s been in American Evangelicalism a growing sense that not all is well, that we have drifted, that we have lost touch with our world and ourselves. In our time, as in other times of instability, Jeremiahs have emerged, calling us “to ask for the old paths” (Jer. 6:16)—to seek the…

Christian Humanist Profiles 81: Reading Matthew with Monks

Ora et labora: Pray and work. This directive has ordered the life of Benedictine monastics for centuries, each day’s rhythm of worship and toil shaping the soul toward love and humility. But this Benedictine life creates other kinds of change as well: it can shape how a monk reads the Bible. In his book, Reading…

Christian Humanist Profiles 42: Amy Appleford

What does it mean to have a good death? Many in our time use technology in an attempt to stave off aging or dying, or to conceal the effects of time. Elders approaching death are frequently sequestered from the rest of society, further reducing opportunities for younger people to contemplate their own mortality. Perhaps for…

Science Hit-and-Run

Theoretical Breakthrough: Generating Matter and Antimatter from Nothing “Under just the right conditions — which involve an ultra-high-intensity laser beam and a two-mile-long particle accelerator — it could be possible to create something out of nothing, according to University of Michigan researchers.” “Nothing” seems to include an awful lot of equipment. Someone please explain creation…

St. Chad the Pedestrian

So, another week, another feast for an Anglo-Saxon saint: February 2, the Feast of St. Chad. Don’t remember Chad? Oh, surely you recall those obnoxious little flecks of paper in the hotly contested presidential election of 2000, the chads? Dimpled chads, hanging chads, swinging chads, pregnant chads: so much hinged on what amounted, materially speaking,…