A family of US Capitol attackers say he suffered from “repeated head injuries” in football for many years.

National Review

Human Christian invention

The most important lesson that historical studies teach us is the contingency. Things didn’t have to turn out as they did. For example, consider the answers that our civilization has given to the most important questions in history. “What does it mean to be human?” Since the Enlightenment, many people in the West have the impression that it is easy to answer this question. It’s just a matter of empirically observing human behavior over time and space and abstracting some universal maxims from the data. This is our modern belief. It means that you can read the truth about yourself in the record of nature, just as you read the story in a book. This ingenious example is the preamble to the Declaration of Independence, written in the Enlightenment meridian by one of the most incandescent spirits. We consider these truths to be trivial. The Creator has given us certain inviolable rights, including the pursuit of life, freedom, and happiness. For Jefferson, and for us living today in the light of his words, “the masses of mankind are not born, have saddles on their backs, and a few preferred people are ready to start, spur, and ride. It is “obvious” that they are not done. “But most people in most places don’t think about such human beings most of the time. We are all equal and unique in character, each with immeasurable dignity and inviolable rights. The idea of ​​having is rare and relatively narrow. The world once existed without it (many of the world still exists today), where the idea came from, and what it came from. If you forget that you have supported it for a long time, you can easily do it again. The ancestor of the word “person” can be traced back to the ancient Greek word prosopon, which means “mask”. It was first used in the context of Greek tragedy. The actor wore a physical prosopon of the role played in a dramatic rendition. But it soon took on political and social significance, especially in Roman society. The Latin word for Prosopon is persona, which is derived from the English word. According to Roman usage, a person’s persona was a person’s social and legal role within the community. This role varies greatly from person to person, from aristocrats to senators, shopkeepers, and servants, and does not cover all people equally as the current word “person.” Different social stations were considered to be almost different species, have nothing in common, and were not considered to have any kind of personal existence other than the role they played in the state. .. For example, Roman slaves were customarily called non-Haven personalities. Their social function was so sneaky and like a tool that they were literally “no people” or “no people.” As we now understand the word, it didn’t really matter who they were as the “people” underneath. The dramatic usage of Greek and the political language of Rome have one important thing in common. In either case, the unique individual behind the mask or playing the social role assigned to him is not considered to be at least important. Metropolitan John Gigiouras said: [ancient] Greece was considered “individual” in nature. In that platonic variation, everything concrete and “personal” refers to the abstract ideas that ultimately make up the rationale and final justification. As they themselves saw, people in the ancient world, whether on stage or in cities, only participated in some of the larger projects that make up their “foundation and final justification.” It actually existed. As Zizioulas goes on to write, “Identity-an important element of the human concept, which makes one person different from another, which makes him himself-. [was] Guaranteed and provided by the state or the entire organization. For this reason, historian Larry Siedentop wrote in the ancient city: “There was no notion of an individual’s right to the claims of the city and its gods. There was no formal freedom of thought or action … Citizens belonged to the city, the body, and the soul.” If it had any value, it was only by referring to an organized population. The arrival of Christianity overturned this less or less challenged old-fashioned order from the dawn of civilization to the first Easter morning in Jerusalem, about 2,000 years ago. The first Christian declaration that God became human erased the notion of humanity that was dominated in the ancient world. If Jesus was a “persona” and he died and was raised as a representative of the whole race, as maintained by the apostolic and patriotic father of the Church, we would be more than society. The nation makes us. It opens a gap between our identity and our social obligations. For the first time, individuals set foot on the stage of human history. “There are no Jews or Greeks. There are no slaves or freedoms. There are no men or women, because you are all one in Christ Jesus,” said Siedentop. As Paul does, believing in Christ allows for the emergence of a major role (“soul equality”) shared equally by all, but traditional social roles-fathers, daughters, officials. , Priest, or Slave — Become a secondary in relation to that primary role. A myriad of social roles may or may not be added as subject attributes to this primary role, but they no longer define the subject. That is the freedom that Paul’s concept of Christ brings to human identity. It is almost impossible for us to realize how shocking our civilization has been after the thousands of years of Easter aftershocks. We are all among the creatures of our moral sensibilities and the basic worldview of Christianity, so we cannot see it from the perspective of pre-Christian society without tremendous imaginative efforts. .. You can’t feel the blasphemous madness of a criminal, non-Haven personality who speaks to a powerful ruler, as Jesus speaks to Pilate near the climax of John’s Gospel. The crucifixion itself is correct when the theologian David Bentley Hart wrote, but even if we try to do so, we will self-evidently despise Christ’s broken, humiliating, and destined humanity. It can never be seen as crucifixion and ridiculous. Instead, in a very realistic sense, we are destined to see it as embracing the very mystery of our own humanity: sublime vulnerabilities, at the same time tragic, magnificent, pathetic. You look amazing. All the contingencies we consider to be decent and valuable about ourselves and our society for sadness and the victory of this one man are all of the bright shadows we have lived for the past 2,000 years. We are consistently avoiding us inside. We forget that in a historically demonstrable way we in the West ow a common sense of universal humanity entirely to Jesus and his church in Nazareth. Even the details of the tearful Easter story of St. Peter after betraying Jesus, to some extent we are completely blind today, reveal the fundamental discontinuities of the Christian Revolution from what happened before. is showing. As Hart touches, what is clear to us is Peter’s injured soul, his dedication to his teacher, the pain of guilt, and the imminent death of Christ forgiving his betrayal. It is a devastating knowledge that we have foreseen the possibility of seeking forever. We are, in a sense, the heirs of a culture born of Peter’s tears, so it is clear in a very large part. For us, the details of this rather small and ordinary story are undoubtedly the decoration of the story, uplifting it, proving its gravity and expanding our common embrace of humanity. In this sense, all of us, and even unbelievers, are “Christians” in our moral expectations of the world. But for late antiquity literate classes, this story of Peter’s crying was likely to have seemed like an aesthetic mistake. Because naive Peter may not have been a sympathetic object of a well-bred person, and his sorrow has the tragic dignity needed to make it worthy of everyone’s attention. I may not have it. .. .. .. This is not just a violation of deliciousness. It’s an act of rebellion. As Siedentop states in “Invention of the Individual: The Origin of Western Liberalism,” the Christian belief in universal human dignity has been socialized for centuries from the first Easter to the present day. There has been a long, uneven and incomplete effort to transform into a target and political reality. Contrary to what Christian enemies claim, the Enlightenment was far more beneficial to centuries of Christian moral penetration than its predecessor: it was coercive. It wasn’t a sudden kick start for a reason after an era of ignorance. Scholar Brian Tierney states that by 1300, many rights were already regularly asserted and defended, based on the Christian understanding of personality. Unbelievers, rights to marriage, procedural rights “, and measures to make these rights enforceable against positive law. We are all Easter cultural relics, as long as we consider ourselves to be individuals who have the right to true responsibility. However, as a survey of American habits suggests, the long cultural aftershocks of the resurrection of the Son of God appear to be receding in the west. Just last week, Gallup published a new study showing that church membership in the United States fell below 50 percent for the first time. Without solid evidence, it would be possible to infer much from the state of American society and politics. We are increasingly moving towards ways to deal with each other, which looks like a pagan culture that Christianity has replaced above all else. Zizioulas described pagan societies as “non-personal” societies. There, the individual “finally refers to the abstract ideas that make up the rationale and final justification.” In America today, individuals are ultimately referred to the abstract political ideas that make up their “grounds and final justification” in the social order. We see each other more and more as flattened avatars of abstract groups that bring out our sense of solidity and meaning. We are Republicans, Democrats, anti-maskers, anti-vaxxers, pro-lifers, pro-choicers. The unique and irreproducible man buried under all these labels, the pre-political man Jesus delivered to each of us on the cross, is crowded and choked. Moreover, there is no reason to believe that it survives the cultural abandonment of the faith that created it. But we have this comfort. Even if this personality dominance is on the verge of death in the West, it will escape from the tomb again. Our failure, personal or political, cannot delay the arrival of a shining city in which Christ reigns forever old and forever untouched by the devastation of a new time.