As I have said in the past, “Be what you would seem to be – or, if you’d like to put it more simply – never imagine yourself not to be otherwise than what it might appear to others that what you were or might have been was not otherwise than what you had been would have appeared to them to be otherwise.”
Audience: Warm applause. “Well said Brother Carroll! Bravo”
Few men have demonstrated the art of expression more clearly or written more eloquently than Severus of Antioch who said, “For even if the Only-Begotten Son of God, incarnate and inhominate, is said by us to be one…. nor has the nature of the Word passed over into the nature of the flesh, nor indeed has the nature of the flesh passed into that which is his, but while each one of them continues together in the particularity that belongs to the nature, and is thought of in accordance with the account which has just been given by us, the inexpressible and ineffable union shows us one nature of the son, but as I have said, incarnate.” Isn’t that just priceless? I stand in awe at his gifts, such ability is rare indeed!
In closing I would like to read just a few stanzas from one of my most acclaimed works. It is a poem called The Jabberwocky and you will see for yourself how carefully I have followed the lead of Severus and how much literary tradition we share.
‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves, did gyre and gimble in the wabe;
All mimsy were the borogoves, and the mome raths outgrabe.
“Beware the Jabberwock, my son, the jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun the frumious Bandersnatch!”
He took his vorpal sword in hand; long time the manxome foe he sought—
So rested he by the Tumtum tree, and stood awhile in thought.
And, as in uffish thought he stood, the Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood, and burbled as it came!
You see how convincingly my prose seems to say something of real importance but how difficult it is to figure out exactly what that might be! Is not this the case with the very best that theological excellence has to offer? Sweet Alice of Alice in Wonderland stated it best: “It seems very pretty but it’s rather hard to understand!” (You see she didn’t like to confess, even to herself, that she couldn’t make it out at all.) “Somehow it seems to fill my head with ideas—only I don’t exactly know what they are!”
Audience: Thunderous applause and shouts of “That’s it! He’s got it!” and “He is most assuredly one of us!” An honorary Doctor of Theology degree was then unanimously conferred upon Mr. Carroll and with that the opening ceremony concluded and everyone retired to the social hall for drinks and appetizers.
To be continued.
Copyright 2021 by Bob Shutes