3/8/15

"Men dying in agonies to find a place where no man can live"

"THUS because we are not in a civilization which believes strongly in oracles or sacred places, we see the full frenzy of those who killed themselves to find the sepulchre of Christ. But being in a civilization which does believe in this dogma of fact for fact's sake, we do not see the full frenzy of those who kill themselves to find the North Pole. I am not speaking of a tenable ultimate utility, which is true both of the Crusades and the polar explorations. I mean merely that we do see the superficial and aesthetic singularity, the startling quality, about the idea of men crossing a continent with armies to conquer the place where a man died. But we do not see the aesthetic singularity and the startling quality of men dying in agonies to find a place where no man can live — a place only interesting because it is supposed to be the meeting-place of some lines that do not exist."

~G.K. Chesterton: Heretics, XX. Concluding Remarks on the Importance of Orthodoxy.


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