Yes, we should forgive God for making men so ignorant. This book was truly a breath of fresh air after reading bullshit Jane Eyre. Walter Miller’s masterpiece ‘A Canticle for Leibowitz’ was thoughtful, meaningful and full of insightful allegory. All the things I love in my books.
Science Fiction Perfection: Nuclear apocalypse and the canonization of a secular scholar named Leibowitz who was martyred for saving and preserving books.
Read this quote I highlighted from the book:
“Whoever exalts race, or the people, or the state, or a particular form of state, or the depositories of power, or any other fundamental value of the human community- however necessary and honorable be their function in worldly things- whoever raises these notions above their standard value and raises them to idolatrous level, distorts and perverts an order of the world planned and created by God.”
Sounds pretty awesome right? That’s why I highlighted it on my Kindle. After reading the quote several times I decided to Google it. Turns out Miller was quoting Pope Pius XI in a letter he wrote to the Nazis in 1937 called Mit brennender Sorge (German: “With burning concern”). It appears the Catholic church didn’t appreciate the so-called Nazi myth of race and blood.”
￼You can imagine my satisfaction when I realized I highlighted Miller’s thesis. My reading comprehension is obviously improving. Is yours?
More of my highlights from A Canticle for Leibowitz:
“Shake the dust off your sandals and go preach Sodom to Gomorrah.”
“But the new ‘culture’ was an inheritance of darkness, wherein ‘simpleton’ meant the same thing as ‘citizen’ meant the same thing as ‘slave’.”
“How can a great and wise civilization have destroyed itself so completely? Perhaps, said Apollo, by being materially great and materially wise, and nothing else.”
“When you tire of living, change itself seems evil, does it not? For then any change at all disturbs the deathlike peace of the life-weary.”
“The children of the world are consistent too- so I say they will soak up everything you can offer, take your job away from you, and then denounce you as a decrepit wreck. Finally, they’ll ignore you entirely.”
“In fact, a great deal of natural philosophy is simply a process of linguistic simplification- an effort to invent languages in which half a page of equations can express an idea which could not be stated in less than a thousand pages of so-called ‘simple’ language.”
“But neither infinite power nor infinite wisdom could bestow godhood upon men. For that there would have to be infinite love as well.”
“We bury your dead and their reputations. We bury you. We are the centuries.”
“Madam, as you very well know, we DO NOT have a War Ministry here; we have a Defense Ministry.”
“…it stood out like a dead fly in a bowl of cream.”
“To minimize suffering and to maximize security were natural and proper ends of society and Caesar. But then they became the only ends, somehow, and the only basis of law- a perversion. Inevitably, then, in seeking only them, we found only their opposites: maximum suffering and minimum security.”
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