20pluscommunitydigestion

There is a great difference in excellency, usefulness, and comfort between people of clear, digested knowledge, and confused, undigested apprehensions. -Richard Baxter

progress?

chesterton6.jpgwe assume that we’ve come so far in such a short amount of time; consider our advances in technology alone: breakthroughs in medicine, in crop science, in meterology, in engineering, in space exploration. In all those domains, obstacles to our survival and our ability to thrive have been dealt a serious, if not mortal, blow. And all that in a mere 100 years.

and yet, in another sense, we’ve progressed no further in 100 years. This quote from Chesterton is almost 100 years old. But consider how well it describes our current condition.

What we suffer from today is humility in the wrong place. Modesty has moved from the organ of ambition. Modesty has settled upon the organ of conviction; where it was never meant to be. A man was meant to be doubtful about himself, but undoubting about the truth; this has been exactly reversed. Nowadays the part of a man that a man does assert is exactly the part he ought not to assert – himself. The part he doubts is exactly the part he ought not to doubt – the Divine Reason. . . . The new skeptic is so humble that he doubts if he can even learn. . . . There is a real humility typical of our time; but it so happens that it’s practically a more poisonous humility than the wildest prostrations of the ascetic. . . . The old humility made a man doubtful about his efforts, which might make him work harder. But the new humility makes a man doubtful about his aims, which makes him stop working altogether. . . . We are on the road to producing a race of man too mentally modest to believe in the multiplication table.

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