Talking Points are the highlights and notes from my Kindle which identify key themes drawn from the text. The highlighted words are followed by reflections.
Yellow highlight | Location: 154
I would end up living a life that runs so absolutely obtusely with American culture.
Note: Goodwill implies necessarily that we are obtuse with the world. Obtuse implies an angle at odds with accepted paradigms. Or, by definition, it might appear as being stubborn and sometimes even dull-witted in the eyes of the world. This is because the world is not of goodwill; therefore, the rationality of both are based on different, and usually opposite, paradigms.Being obtuse with the world means being different more than simply being opposite or reactionary. Those of goodwill are not reactionaries, i.e., those who simply resist alternative views. Those of goodwill are journeying to an entirely different Kingdom and have an entirely different world view than those not of goodwill.
Yellow highlight | Location: 161
Remarkable souls whom we call saints called me to it. I did not come to it on my own merit. However, the land where these heavenly friends led me infused my soul with peace and freedom and created in me a whole person.
Note: We are part of a Kingdom. It is to this Kingdom we owe our goodwill. This Kingdom spans earth and Heaven. This is our introduction to ultra-realism.
Yellow highlight | Location: 164
My journey to the edifying spiritual highlands and clear air of Christendom through the wholeness of Catholic Faith, Reason, and Tradition is the story of this book.
Note: Referring to Medieval Christendom as a type of the Kingdom of Heaven is ultra-realism. Christendom can be interpreted in the same light as one interprets scripture in that Christendom is allegorical as it relates to the Social Kingship of Christ and the society that is the Kingdom of God, moral as it relates to the defense of God’s moral order through that Kingdom, and anagogical as it relates to leading us to Heaven as our end.
Yellow highlight | Location: 174
a rock whose own foundation antedates the physical universe.
Note: Another metaphor using ultra-realism.
Yellow highlight | Location: 183
To some these words may sound like sweet music, to others like fingernails scraping a blackboard, and to still others like a muddled conflagration of thoughts.
Note: We cannot expect to be universally accepted or understood. Truth does not change. The world is amorphous. Therefore the world rationalizes based on ever-changing premises that typically are at odds with premises grounded in Truth. Those of goodwill and those of the world will not have the same idea as to what is rational based on these conflicting premises.
Yellow highlight | Location: 184
I pray I do not offend any person of goodwill,
Note: Though, for reasons mentioned previously regarding different views of rationality based on conflicting premises, it is likely that we will offend those of the world, i.e, those not of goodwill. This seems inevitable.
Yellow highlight | Location: 188
The joy, freedom, and life-saving grace of which I will speak in this book are not due to me being a special person with a unique spirituality, a worthy person, or someone called out as a leader among many.
Note: This Kingdom is above and beyond us even though it is in us. That we receive it as a gift means absolutely nothing in terms of our worthiness or sanctity. The Kingdom subsists in itself as inherently good and is the Form toward which we journey; it is not a reflection of our virtue. Therefore, we have nothing about which to boast.
Yellow highlight | Location: 193
This path unifies us through objective Truth while allowing each of us to grow into the individuals whom God intended us to be, all by following the Dogmatic Roman Catholic Church!
Note: Reference here Therese’s metaphor of nature. The beauty of the landscape is manifested precisely by the wide variety of flowers, trees, meadows, brooks, rivers, and majestic mountains in the distance. It is one beautiful landscape oriented to one magnificent Form made up of a wide variety of inequalities according to the Divine Order.
Yellow highlight | Location: 202
I will not say that your experience of that path necessarily should be like mine. However, I will say that the path itself, no matter how it affects you subjectively, is the true road to freedom, joy, and eternal happiness.
Yellow highlight | Location: 206
I call my journey the Trail of the Dogmatic Creed.
Note: Another ultra-real metaphor describing the dogmas, doctrines, and creeds of the Roman Catholic Church that provide us with safety and sure guidance on our journey to the Kingdom.
Yellow highlight | Location: 206
It is the only road to which I think true reason will lead you
Note: True reason depends on proper premises. Holy Realism as a philosophical orientation opens our hearts and minds to the proper premises from which to derive true reason.
Yellow highlight | Location: 207
the Catholic Church is the only means to reach our ultimate destiny
Note: The Church is the instrument of God’s salvation. There is no salvation outside the Catholic Church.
Yellow highlight | Location: 208
He is a Father and wishes all his children to find their way out of the wilderness that puzzles us each day when we arise.
Note: The objective redemption of all men merited by Christ must be accepted subjectively by each individual.
Yellow highlight | Location: 213
It is too bad that many more do not use that freedom to obey rather than disobey; for, the free act of obedience to God makes eternal beatitude an objective reality.
Note: The preeminent place of goodwill. As St. Augustine described it, the City of God (those of goodwill) versus the City of Man (those of bad will, who seek not truth but what pleases them, i.e., they are of the spirit of the world).
Yellow highlight | Location: 221
He desires that every person would accept it.
Note: Christ redeemed all men objectively speaking; however, the objective redemption must be accepted subjectivity by each individual.
Yellow highlight | Location: 248
We are divisive because we love for Heaven’s sake, and I will explain that all to you in this book.
Note: Divisiveness and love in religion are completely compatible and even complementary through the philosophical lens of ultra-realism. Truth is objective, and the Kingdom is a true Heavenly Form toward which we journey. To love is to encourage others toward this objectively true Form (to desire the good for them) and to discourage and dissuade them from turning away from it. Thus, we love while being divisive and obtuse all at the same time.
Yellow highlight | Location: 254
We are so lost in the notion that individuals in their own consciences can create a subjective Christ of their own meaning, without any authoritative institution, that we have ended up with non-Christian Eastern New Age philosophers writing books to teach us about Christ!
Note: In contradistinction to ultra-realism (goodwill before the intellect), moderate realism in the Aristotelian mode (intellect before goodwill) lends itself to subjectivity, heresy, and relativism. We easily become lost in the woods on our journey. Truth is seen only in relation to our ability to understand it. Thus, through the blurry philosophical lens of moderate realism, we are prone to search for Truth even from those who do not believe, such as from pagans or those following Eastern New Age spirituality, as we think they might have insights from their own belief systems that would help us in our own search for Truth.
Yellow highlight | Location: 278
I call it The Freedom Dance, for those who called me to it were, in spirit, dancing joyfully and in freedom themselves.
Note: Obedience to Truth brings freedom, happiness, and joy.