The biggest problem with the “Benedict Option”, besides the source, is that it lacks a Benedict.
And if there is a Benedict in the world today he would not be recognized. This is not medieval Europe or modern India, where seeking the Absolute in solitude is honored. St Benedict would just be another homeless guy living in the woods.
It is going to be really hard for me to follow Jesus soon. Word is, Rod Dreher is writing a book about the B.O. He is probably going to make a good bit of money from what is in essence regurgitated Caelum et Terra stuff I wrote twenty years ago, dumbed down and made safe for bohemian Republicans.
I wrote about creating an alternative culture in the boonies. He writes about Special Christians playing church and eating kale in the suburbs, safely removed from the corrupt world. Or something.
I no longer believe that creating a counterculture is a good strategy. I am skeptical that modern humans are capable of such a project, based on what I have seen. I have come to see that Vatican II’s call to embrace human experience, to transcend moralism and reaction, to engage the culture without compromising the gospel of mercy, is going to be the blueprint for the next phase of the Church’s evolution. And we have a pope who is ushering in this way of Love.
The other major theme behind the journal is one I completely stand by: the tragedy of the sundering of grace and nature, of technology obliviating primal human experience, of wonder and reason divided, of the poverty of human experience mediated by artifice. The neocons way back when mocked this as ‘holistic’ and it is indeed.
Humans are growing further and further from engagement with the world that ‘God’ breathes into existence with every moment, of Eternity here and now. Alienation has grown as technopoly has triumphed.
I really wouldn’t mind if someone wrote about that.
With a fountain pen.