mercredi 30 novembre 2011

More on obedience - and its limits (debate)

Between myself and one FSSPX faithful. His screen name is anonymous. It is about the matter already alluded to in comments section of previous post.And he is one of the two faithful I answered in it. His attitude was such that I found it indicated to ask him about a French connexion of his, named as on FB in our correspondence, but here referred to as NN:

If NN is in St Nicolas du Chardonnet (I seem to recognise the face), you may ask her for confirmation about what the priests there say about me and about my blogs.

Taken from the Catechism of St. Pius X:
1 Q: What does the Fourth Commandment: Honor thy father and thy mother, command?
A: The Fourth Commandment: Honor thy father and thy mother, commands us to respect our parents, obey them in all that is not sinful, and assist them in their temporal and spiritual needs.
2 Q: What does the Fourth Commandment forbid?
A: The Fourth Commandment forbids us to offend our parents by word or by deed or in any other way.
3 Q: What other persons does this Commandment include under the names of father and mother?
A: Under the names of father and mother this Commandment also includes all our superiors, both ecclesiastical and lay, whom we must consequently obey and respect. Pax Christi Regis.

"obey them in all that is not sinful" - should be taken as:
  • all that is neither
    sinful for oneself to do
  • nor
    sinful for them to ask

see thereon Summa Theologica, II-II, whatever the Question is that is about Obedience [I found it and added:]*
(a parallel is adduced for illustration in beginning of corpus, read it if you like):
On like manner there are two reasons, for which a subject may not be bound to obey his superior in all things. First on account of the command of a higher power. For as a gloss says on Romans 13:2, "They that resist [Vulgate: 'He that resisteth'] the power, resist the ordinance of God" (cf. St. Augustine, De Verb. Dom. viii). "If a commissioner issue an order, are you to comply, if it is contrary to the bidding of the proconsul? Again if the proconsul command one thing, and the emperor another, will you hesitate, to disregard the former and serve the latter? Therefore if the emperor commands one thing and God another, you must disregard the former and obey God." Secondly, a subject is not bound to obey his superior if the latter command him to do something wherein he is not subject to him. For Seneca says (De Beneficiis iii): "It is wrong to suppose that slavery falls upon the whole man: for the better part of him is excepted." His body is subjected and assigned to his master but his soul is his own. Consequently in matters touching the internal movement of the will man is not bound to obey his fellow-man, but God alone.

Nevertheless man is bound to obey his fellow-man in things that have to be done externally by means of the body: and yet, since by nature all men are equal, he is not bound to obey another man in matters touching the nature of the body, for instance in those relating to the support of his body or the begetting of his children. Wherefore servants are not bound to obey their masters, nor children their parents, in the question of contracting marriage or of remaining in the state of virginity or the like. But in matters concerning the disposal of actions and human affairs, a subject is bound to obey his superior within the sphere of his authority; for instance a soldier must obey his general in matters relating to war, a servant his master in matters touching the execution of the duties of his service, a son his father in matters relating to the conduct of his life and the care of the household; and so forth.


Now, will or won't you ask her? I am not ordering it as your superior, for if so, I would have nothing to back that up with, I am just asking it, as a personal favour from you to someone who feels wronged and may be so. Not that all charity is absent in every respect - indeed I was given a larger sum of money today - but that does not make the kind of backbiting I suspect any less wrong if it occurs. And if not, I find it a bit funny no one has been printing my blogs and paying me a voluntary sum for it.

I do not want to hear any slanderous talk against holy priests.

I do want to hear, from other parishioners, via you, if these priests have been holy or if they have been slandering me and my blogs.

So, do ask her.

Pride is a denial of God, an invention of the devil, contempt for men. It is the mother of condemnation, the offspring of praise, a sign of barrenness. It is a flight from God's help, the precursor of madness, the cause of downfall. It is the cause of satanic possession, the source of anger, the gateway of hypocrisy. It is the fortress of demons, the guardian of sins, the source of hardheartedness. It is the denial of compassion, a bitter Pharisee, a cruel judge. It is the foe of God. It is the root of blasphemy. Pax Christi Regis.

Thank you very much. Then it is up to God who is proud in St Nicolas du Chardonnet, if anyone is ... I still want to know if your friend is a parishioner there and what has been being said about me, if that is the case. That I am proud, perhaps?

Demons once heaped praise on one of the most discerning of the brothers. They even appeared to him in visible form. But this very wise man spoke to them as follows, "If you cease to praise me by way of the thoughts of my heart, I shall consider myself to be great and outstanding because of the fact that you have left me. But if you continue to praise me, I must deduce from such praise that I am very impure indeed, since every proudhearted man is unclean before the Lord (cf. Prov. 16:5). So leave me, and I shall become great, or else praise me, and with your help I shall earn more humility." Struck by this dilemma, they vanished. Pax Christi Regis.

Wonderful. A beautiful story. But what I ask of St Nicolas du Chardonnet is not praise, it is cooperation with my project for my life and - in case of my blogs - livelihood. When young Marcel Lefèbvre met a watchmaker out of work, he did not tell the watchmaker "you are proud if you want to remain a watchmaker, why don't you offer your services to Swatch, they might have a cleaning job and if you do it well they might even let you advance to something related to watchmaking" - instead, he made sure that people of Tourcoing who needed watches repaired got his adress so he got his livelihood made through mending and maybe amking watches on his own again. Now, when it comes to this writer - yes WRITER - up to yesterday I have not been very much encouraged to find readers. And for this composer I have not had my pieces played. And for this prospective family man, girls who might have been in love with me and whom I was in love with have been turned away from meeting me, one after another. That is not warning a man against pride, it is ruining a man by pride.

Oh, one more thing: my writing IS not an apostolate. It INCLUDES Apologetics. As did CSL's, as did Chesterton's. It includes phlilogy, as did CSL's, it includes citizenship in face of tyrannous abuses of public power, as did Chesterton's. I am more than fed up with being measured in this respect by standards of pure spirituality, as if I had renounced all earthly things and had no earthly or rational motive for what I am doing.

And if they happen to think my Apologetics bad, I can see why they would not want to help me get that printed, but hardly why they would also want to stop me from getting my guitar sonatas (really guitar sonatinas, but "sonatina" is not Latin) played for money!

Or my string Quartet. Or my poems printed. Or ... do you get the point?

Hans-Georg Lundahl
St Andrew's Day of
the Y o o L 2011

*SUMMA THEOLOGICA: Obedience (Secunda Secundae Partis, Q. 104) is being quoted, not my correspondent, between the lines of = signs.

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