Stormfields

Cosmograf man’s new label announce first signing: The Bardic Depths | Louder

New progressive rock duo The Bardic Depths are the first signing to Cosmograf man Robin Armstrong’s new label Gravity Dream. The band consist of multi-instrumentalist Dave Bandana and noted US historian Brad Birzer, who many here will know from the respected Progarchy website, who has supplied the lyrics and concept behind the duo’s forthcoming new album The Bardic Depths, which will be released on March 27.

“The album is about friendship and its ability to get us through anything including war, with the concept centring on the literary friendship formed between J.R.R Tolkien and C. S Lewis between 1931 and 1949, “ the Lanzarote based band leader Bandana tells Prog.
— Read on www.loudersound.com/news/cosmograf-mans-new-label-announce-first-signing-the-bardic-depths

The Pagan Roots of the Christian Logos ~ The Imaginative Conservative

Any understanding of human dignity in the twenty-first century demands an understanding of the Judeo-Christian Logos (Memra in Hebrew). Without it, there is only chaos and darkness, dispiritedness and confusion, blackness and the abyss. One only has to witness the evil sown by the attempted coup against the Judeo-Christian Logos in the last century by Mars, Demos, and Leviathan and its agents in the ideological struggles of that fell time to realize how fragile and yet how necessary a vital comprehension of the concept is. Progressivism, fascism, socialism, communism, and democracy all despised the Logos, seeing it, properly, as that which stifled all utilitarianism as well as all materialistic ambitions.
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2020/01/pagan-roots-christian-logos-bradley-birzer.html

Remembering the Virtues ~ The Imaginative Conservative

I suspect that much of the neglect of virtue comes as much from its inconvenience for the powermongers as much as it does from its necessary reliance on free will. “Men will be good or bad builders as a result of building well or building badly,” Aristotle claimed. “For if this were not so, there would have been no need of a teacher, but all men would have been born good or bad at their craft. This, then, is the case with the virtues also.” Somewhat horrifically, though, for the last two-hundred years, western civilization, in particular, has moved steadily away from a belief in real choices and toward determinisms of various types.

The virtues, however, are rooted in nature, in creation, and in God’s will for us. They can be forgotten, mocked, or distorted, but, being real and true and beautiful, they can never be conquered. Russell Kirk argued that virtue “is [the] energy of soul employed for the general good.” Thus, there is never a bad time to remember the virtues, and our society desperately needs them. God distributes these, then, according to His Will, through His Economy of Grace. “For just as in a single human body there are many limbs and organs, all with different functions,” St. Paul wrote, “so all of us, united with Christ, form one body, serving individually as limbs and organs to one another.” Gifts such as teaching, counseling, or speaking “differ as they are allotted to us by God’s grace, and must be exercised accordingly.” Our gifts should be for the common good, for the Body of Christ—that is, the Church.
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2020/01/remembering-virtues-bradley-birzer.html

Book Review: Beyond Tenebrae: Christian Humanism in the Twilight of the West – Entering the Public Square

It is these defenders of order that Birzer seeks to highlight. For people like myself, it is easy to feel like you are alone, watching the world burn, but not knowing what to do about it. I live in a state with a very small Christian minority. While I am thankful for the Christians I have in my life, we all know that we are, in the words of Russell Moore, a prophetic minority. Birzer’s work serves as an antidote and an encouragement. There is a vast tradition of those who have looked into the abyss but have remained strong. In fact, they have done more than that, they have created. They have harnessed pieces of the Good, True and Beautiful and presented them to us for our fortification and enjoyment.
— Read on www.enteringthepublicsquare.com/blog/book-review-beyond-tenebrae-christian-humanism-in-the-twilight-of-the-west

C.S. Lewis and His Critics ~ The Imaginative Conservative

A more serious challenge came from English poet and historian Robert Conquest who charged Lewis and Charles Williams with holding and promoting totalitarian sympathies. While his criticism applied mainly to Williams, Lewis became a part of the controversy by praising Williams’s Arthurian poetry. The two men, Conquest claimed, willfully obscured the venerable mythology, thus rendering it and its story unintelligible to the average person. They turned the vast Arthurian legend into a “complex intellectual parlour game,” a gnostic jumble, accessible only to the Elect. In Williams (and, by inference, in Lewis), one finds “a genuine writer who has fully accepted a closed and monopolistic system of ideas and feelings, and what is more, puts it forthrightly with its libidinal component scarcely disguised.”[7] That which is intelligible advocates the use of violence “to bring in unbelievers” with human beings treated merely as a means to an end.[8] Lewis and Williams each promote a “psychology of totalitarianism—of hierarchy and sadism.”[9]
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2019/12/cs-lewis-his-critics-bradley-birzer.html

If Orwell Had an Anthem, Pink Floyd Would Have Produced It | The American Conservative

Like no other songwriters of their time, the British band encapsulated fears of tyranny and conformity, war and mass consumption.
— Read on www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/if-orwell-had-an-anthem-pink-floyd-would-have-produced-it/

How to Think about God: A Pagan “Mere Christianity” ~ The Imaginative Conservative

Cicero took this line of argumentation much further—and with much greater depth—in his famous dialogue, On the Laws. Here, though, Cicero’s speaker claimed that through reason the universe is one with God, offering a sort of intelligent pantheism. “Thus we can assume that the universe must possess wisdom and that the element which holds together all that exists excels in perfect reason. From this we see that the universe is in fact God and that the vital force of the universe is held together by this divine nature.” In and through its own reason, the universe also moves toward perfection, order, and harmony. From its beginning, the universe was good and wise, and it only moves towards an even greater goodness, truth, and beauty. In our contemplation of the good, the true, and the beautiful, we humans become better. “Humans have emerged for contemplating and imitating the universe. We are certainly not perfect, but we are a part of perfection.”
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2019/12/how-think-about-god-pagan-mere-christianity-bradley-birzer.html

$7.50, J.R.R. Tolkien’s Sanctifying Myth – ISI Books

Even as Peter Jackson’s blockbuster film versions of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit have brought J. R. R. Tolkien’s imaginative creations to the masses, the underlying meaning of Middle-earth has remained o
— Read on isibooks.org/j-r-r-tolkien-s-sanctifying-myth-2124.html

Hobbes’ “Leviathan”: A Collectivist Horror ~ The Imaginative Conservative

Perhaps no modern thinker best represented these changes than did Thomas Hobbes. In his seminal work, Leviathan, Hobbes called for the creation of a “mortal god”—the Leviathan—to counter and augment the will of the “immortal god.” In his view of society, man was utterly and completely depraved, incapable of anything but self-interest and cannibalism. “Hereby it is manifest that during the time men live without a common power to keep them all in awe, they are in that condition which is called war, and such a war as is of every man against every man,” he wrote. “For war consists not in battle only, or the act of fighting, but in a tract of time wherein the will to contend by battle is sufficiently known; and therefore the notion of time is to be considered in the nature of war as it is in the nature of weather.” As such, when men are left to their own devices, Hobbes laments, there can exist no industry, no agriculture, “no navigation; nor use of the commodities that may be imported by the sea; no commodious building; no instruments of moving, and removing, such things as require much force; no knowledge of the face of the earth; no account of time; no arts; no letters; no society; and which is worst of all, continual fear and danger of violent death; and the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.” The immortal god, Hobbes admits, has bestowed upon each of the natural right and liberty of self-preservation. Rather, however, than seeing this right as extending to all of mankind, we selfishly hoard the natural right for ourselves and use it as a pretext for violence upon and against our neighbor.
— Read on theimaginativeconservative.org/2019/12/hobbes-leviathan-collectivist-horror-bradley-birzer.html

American Cicero – Books – ISI Books

Aristocrat. Catholic. Patriot. Founder.

Before his death in 1832, Charles Carroll of Carrollton—the last living signer of the Declaration of Independence—was widely regarded as one of the most important Founders.
— Read on isibooks.org/books/american-cicero.html

QUICK HITS: Bradley Birzer A weekly rapid-fire interview – Hillsdale Collegian

Where did you attend college? Notre Dame for undergrad. Indiana Uni­versity for graduate school. How did you propose to your wife? I wrote out 95 reasons why she should marry me and posted them on the cathedral door in Helena, Montana because she was Lutheran. I took her there at about 20 minutes to mid­night on Feb­ruary 12th of 1998. She said yes. If you were on a desert island, what three books would you bring? “The Lord of the Rings,” the Bible, and “City of God.” You’re on a desert island and get access to one website.  What do you choose? The Imag­i­native Con­ser­v­ative. Would you rather climb Mount Everest or go to the bottom of the ocean in a sub­marine? Everest. Do you have any super­sti­tions? I believe in ghosts.
— Read on hillsdalecollegian.com/2019/12/quick-hits-bradley-birzer-a-weekly-rapid-fire-interview/

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