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᧸ Read Format Kindle [ A Tremor of Bliss: Sex, Catholicism, and Rock 'n' Roll ] Ѫ By Mark Judge ण

᧸ Read  Format Kindle [ A Tremor of Bliss: Sex, Catholicism, and Rock 'n' Roll ] Ѫ By Mark Judge ण ᧸ Read Format Kindle [ A Tremor of Bliss: Sex, Catholicism, and Rock 'n' Roll ] Ѫ By Mark Judge ण Chapter OneMY FOOLISH HEARTOn St Patricks Day 2006, the jazz singer and former divinity student Kurt Elling preached the theology of the body The setting was the Strath Center, a resplendent 100 million concert hall outside Washington, D.C., and the sermon was in the form of song.About halfway through the concert, Elling performed the standard My Foolish Heart It is a romantic ballad, full of the kind of imagery that goes with lovethe nighttime, the moon, the erotic charge of lips Halfway through the song, the band died down, providing only a slow and steady pulse behind Elling.Then he sang a poem One dark night Fired with loves urgent longings Clothed in sheer grace I went out unseen My house being now all still On that dark night Clothed in sheer grace In darkness and concealed My house being now all still On that black night In secret for no one saw me With no other light as guide than the one that burned in my heart This guided me surely than the light of noon To where she waited for me The one I knew so well To the place where no one appeared In the night In the mystic nightIt was a passage from Saint John of the Cross Elling was commingling the carnal charge of My Foolish Heart with the metaphysical passion of a sixteenth century Catholic Spanish mystic The band was barely audible, and the space in the concert hall became charged with a sacramental, erotic energy After several minutes, pianist Laurence Hobgood softly reintroduced the melody to My Foolish Heart Elling sang Theres a line between love and fascination, its hard to see on an evening such as this The lyrics had returned to the pleasures of kisses and the fire of love, but the distance traveled between Saint John and the Great American Songbook was not far The band charged back, and the audience of several thousand seemed to both sigh as one and applaud Theywehad been seduced.In ten minutes Elling had made the point once made by John Paul II in four years of lectures To the human person, love recalls the echo of our time before the Fall, and as such, our bodily love is an icon of the Trinitarian love of God.Elling had distilled to its essence The Theology of the Body Based on a series of lectures given between 1979 and 1983 by John Paul II, the book is a theological Mount Everest, considered by most people including Catholicstoo intimidating to approach Yet at its heart is a fairly simple ideasex is participation in and a reflection of the love of God therefore sex, and our bodies themselves, are very good things.This may seem like an obvious insightsex has always been associated with the divine But in the hands of the late pope it reaches remarkable poetic and theological depth The Theology of the Body signaled a sexual revolution in the Catholic Church, one that is now even underway in the larger culture But it is a revolution that has been than one hundred years in the making It is not, obviously, the sexual revolution of the 1960s and perhaps in the larger culture as well, with its shattering free love which, as writer Stephen Catanzarite has pointed out, was neither Nor is it exactly a conservative counterrevolution Rather, it is the fulfillment of the thinking of Catholic intellectuals going back to the early twentieth century These were defenders of sex as something good and holy, freely talking of orgasms and the language of the body at a time when most Catholics were discouraged from even thinking of such things While their message never trickled down to Catholic schools or stormed the gates of the Vatican, it found powerful expression in the popular culture particularly in the poetry of rock n roll music And with John Paul II, it found validation Now it could be the salvation for Western culture, which has gone sexually insane.For a time, I was part of that insanity I was born in 1964 to Irish Catholic parents, and the closest I ever got to a sex talk from my parents was when I was about ten years old At school I had overheard a teenager call someone a prick The next morning, I padded out to the small garden in our backyard where my dad was weeding Dad, I asked, whats a prick For a brief second, he hesitated, his sweaty hands hanging over the tulips Then he simply started weeding again It was as though he thought he heard a dog barking in the distance.I asked again Whats a prick He weeded.Dad, I said again, stepping over the flowerbed so I could not be ignored Whats a prick He looked at me Then he gently took me by the shoulders and leaned in close Its your penis, he whispered I felt myself blush I knew what a penis was It had to do with sex and we didnt talk about sex I backed away and retreated into the house while Dad tended to his garden.Yet my father was the furthest thing from a prude A journalist and world traveler for National Geographic, Dad was brilliant, funny, and passionately loved my mother The stories he would tell sometimes tended toward the ribald Once when I pulled a groin muscle playing football, he noticed I was limping around the house Were you with a girl last night he whispered I said no, that I had been playing football Uh huh, he said A devout Catholic, he loved nature and once told my best friend and me that we were being silly when we laughed at two ducks having sex in the backyard Hey, its spring, he said To Dad, women were magical creatures He would often become smitten with movie stars and never tired of ballads played by the big bands.He was, in short, anything but a repressive or hidebound man Born in 1928, he was of the generation who simply did not talk to their kids about sex because their parents had not talked to them about sex We had to find out about sex from other places.In my case, I learned about love from rock n roll I still remember the night I fell in love with the Beatles, which was shortly after I had fallen in love with Lisa, the girl next door It was a hot summer night in 1970, and I was six years old When I went to bed in our house in Maryland in those days, it was often to the sounds of my oldest brother Joe playing music in his room a few feet down the hall One night, Joe put on A Hard Days Night, the soundtrack to the great Beatles film.Many people recall their first experience with the Beatles as cataclysmic, life changing, revolutionary Like an atomic bomb, the Beatles supposedly destroyed everything that had once stood before, creating the future and a new landscape Yet on that humid night in 1970, my six year old reaction was quite different I didnt think of war, revolution, my parents, or drugs I thought of a girl I thought of Lisa, who lived next door I was in love with Lisa, and I found that love reflected back to me in the music of A Hard Days Night In hearing And I Love Her, Im Happy Just to Dance With You, and If I Fell from Joes room, my imagination took off.The Catholic theologian Fr Paul M Quay would later describe the sexual act as a woman opening herself up to a man, her giving of herself, and the man penetrating her with his very essenceput simply, their mutual self givingan expression of the love of God Though I wasnt remotely conscious of it at the time, John, Paul, George, and Ringo offered the same message Like intense and very effective prayer, you could feel God in their soundthe happy bounce of I Should Have Known Better the mystical, hopeful solemnity of Things We Said Today the orgasmic cries of When I Get Home In those brilliant notes, I saw Lisa and me dancing, laughing, kissing, being husband and wife If this was revolutionary music, it was preaching a very old lesson the power of love.I soon realized that loveand its lossis the great theme of popular music, from Louis Armstrong right down to Justin Timberlake Popular music was exploring the initial ecstasy Adam felt when he first saw flesh of my flesh and bone of my bone Whether it was the Supremes declaring there aint no mountain high enough, the Beatles heralding the good news that she loves you, or Van Morrison whispering about a marvelous night for a moon dance, this great desire to return to our original union with Godincluding the conjugal union between Adam and Eve that preceded the Fallis the urge that launched a thousand hits.Indeed, it is such a ubiquitous theme that its impossible to run through my favorite bands without coming face to face with it The punk group the Replacements, my favorite band when I was in my twenties, have a song called I Will Dare, about working up the courage to meet a girl The Allman Brothers sing of Sweet Melissa The entire Motown canon, from Marvin Gaye to Stevie Wonder, is a joyful soundtrack of the quest for love specifically, the quest for the love of that one person you were meant to be with, the one who is the answer to a prayer, who can make time stop.In his encyclical Deus Caritas Est God Is Love , Pope Benedict XVI refers to the love between a man and a woman as that love which is neither planned nor willed, but somehow imposes itself upon human beings In the U2 song Original of the Species, singer Bono says that love steals right under my door, neither planned nor willed Bono can only cry for , delirious with the fecundity and gratuitous grace of God Its probably no mistake, given his acknowledged Catholic spirituality, that he cries I want you some three times, perhaps reflecting the Trinity.Of course, the Beatles could not teach me the basics of reproductive biology I also wasnt going to get that in Catholic parochial school In the 1970s my grade school, Our Lady of Mercy in Maryland, was not ready for the sexual revolution The school was run by two womenSister Mary, the principal, and Miss Donahue not their real names , a teacher who would eventually become principal Both women were tough yet fair both were feared and respected by the students Unlike my father, they could not joke about sex Like any boy with a crush, I found myself obsessing about Lisa during class Sister Mary or Miss Donahue would be dilating about the nature of angels or conjugating verbs, and I would stare out the window, fantasizing about kissing Lisa.Finally, one afternoon I was on the street playing wiffle ball when Lisa came walking by on her way home from school Inspired by I Wanna Hold Your Hand, I asked her if I could kiss her.She said yes.I stood there We watched each other for a few seconds Then she turned and walked home I had lost my nerve.For the rest of the summer I was slowly tortured by my inactionbut I was also inspired Lisa had said I could kiss her All I had to do was do it.The moment came when school began a few weeks later I was playing catch with a friend when she came by on her way home from school She was about to pass by when I spoke up Um Lisa Can I kiss you now OK.I moved in At the last second she turned, making sure I hit her on the cheek and not the mouth.For the next several days, I was in a dream world Sister Mary and Miss Donahue talked multiplication tables and transubstantiation, but only my physical body was in class I was already married to Lisa, or reliving the kiss over and over again There was simply nobody in school or at home who could explain to me why I felt the way I did When I mentioned Lisa, my dad just smiled I graduated from Our Lady of Mercy in the spring of 1979 having kissed a girl, but still not knowing much about what the rock musician Elvis Costello, who had just hit the charts with his first album, called the Mystery Dance.Things would be explained to me, graphically, when I got to high school I went to Georgetown Prep, the little brother school to Georgetown University Apparently by this time the Catholic Church had gotten over its reticence about sex Our sex ed teacher at Prep was a man named Bernie Ward, who would later become a well known left wing talk show host in San Francisco Ward would also be arrested and convicted for sending pornographic images of children over the Internet.On the first day of sex ed class, Ward, an average sized man with a bad complexion, handed out the days readinga tract about feminism and sex by Betty Friedan He then went to the front of the classroom and made an announcement There was nothing wrong with masturbation It was healthy It was normal It would make you happy In fact, masturbating, even if you were married, would only help the relationship For the next six months, the female body became a sort of flesh and bone vending machine, something that would respond and deliver if you knew where to insert the quarter and pushed the right button.Mr Wards exegesis on sex did not do me much good when I lost my virginity the summer after I took his class I met Donna when I had a party when I was seventeen and my parents were out of town The kids left the house a mess, and Donna and a friend had stayed behind to help me clean up It was about two a.m when we were finishing, and as Donna was vacuuming up beer I pulled her toward me and kissed her Mr Ward had filled my vocabulary with words like clitoris, orgasm, and ejaculation What he hadnt prepared me for was falling in love with a real person To be sure, hormones were driving me to have sex with Donna But it was also something transcendent As Saint Ambrose once put it, lovers embracing seem to be attempting to breathe their souls into each other.Again, rock n roll seemed to describe the powerful parallel world I was entering Where my parents and their generation considered lovemaking a wonderful taboo not to be spoken of in detail, and Mr Ward reduced it to Marxism and moving parts, the songs I loved told me that it could be boththe swiveling hips of Elvis and the tender ballads of the Fab Four the erotic dynamism of Little Richard and the moonlit romance of Van Morrison To put it in theological terms, the music made the connection between agape, the love of God, and eros, physical desire At night, from Joes room, Jimi Hendrix, the Rolling Stones, the Allman Brothers, and the blues musicians he loved would serenade me with the wonder of love.Yet the Church was catching up with the Top 40 In September 1979my first week at Georgetown Prep Pope John Paul II began a series of lectures that would be published as The Theology of the Body John Paul II went back to Genesis to reveal the true meaning of love and the human body The pope emphasized that manmeaning all human personswas made in the image of God Thus, when we are seeing another person, we are seeing the image of God We become even like God through the act of loving that person as an image of God, not as an object of lust And we can only achieve mastery of ourselves and our sexuality by realizing that we ourselves are also created in the image of God When we know this fully, we can come to realize genuine freedom The Theology of the Body had its origin in early 1940, when a nineteen year old Polish seminarian named Karol Wojtyla met Jan Tyranowski, a thirty nine year old tailor living in Krakow, which had been taken over by the Nazis The Germans had stripped Poland of much of its Catholic clergy, and as a result many Catholics were forced underground, where they sought instruction and inspiration from laymen One of the most charismatic of these was Tyranowski.As a teenager, Tyranowski had heard a sermon in which the priest declared, Its not difficult to be a saint Smitten by the phrase, Tyranowski took a vow of celibacy and organized his life around religious practice and reading He was soon a genuine Catholic mystic In the words of theologian George Weigel, for Tyranowski, the goal of contemplative prayer was a release from thoughts and images, a freedom to simply be in Gods presence.After the Gestapo sent Polish priests to concentration camps, Tyranowski formed an underground Catholic group called the Living Rosary, made up of groups of young men who devoted themselves to spiritual development and mutual support Wojtyla soon became a leader of this group Tyranowskis example, he later recalled, proved that one could not only inquire about God but that one could live with God It was Tyranowski who introduced Wojtyla to Saint John of the Cross, the sixteenth century Catholic mystic Wojtyla, an athlete as well as a scholar who had seen several friends fall in love, was struck by the love poetry of Saint John, who drew a direct correlation between physical experience and the love of God In works like The Ascent of Mount Carmel and The Dark Night of the Soul, Saint John combines poetry and prose in an ecstatic ode to union with the Lord O lamps of fire in whose splendors the deep caverns of feeling once obscure and blind, now give forth, so rarely, so exquisitely, both warmth and light to their Beloved.In his commentary on the last two lines, Saint John writes that since God gives himself with a free and gracious will, so too the soul possessing a will generous and free the it is united with God gives to God, God himself in God and this is a true and complete gift of the soul to God.A reciprocal love is thus actually formed betweenGod and the soul, like the marriage union and surrender,in which the goods of both the divine essencethat each possesses freely by reason of thevoluntary surrender between them are possessedby both together They say to each other what theSon of God spoke to the Father through John Allthat is mine is yours and yours is mine, and I amglorified in them Jn 17 10.The young Wojtyla became so smitten with John of the Cross that he wrote his dissertation on the Spanish mystic The future pope would emphasize the Trinitarian aspect of the union between the soul and Godthat is to say, the love of God was mirrored in human love, especially human sexual love Wojtyla This concept of the relationship between God and the soul, at once filial and conjugal, is based on two constant elements 1 the adoptive communication of grace and 2 the power of love The soul, Wojtyla wrote, becomes God by participation and therefore by participation it possesses divinity itself.The theologian Michael Waldstein has noted three points of contact between John of the Cross and John Paul II They are 1 Love implies a cycle of mutual giving, supremely the gift of self 2 The paradigmatic instance of such self gift in human experience is the spousal relation between man and woman 3 The Trinity is the archetype of such love and gift from which the love between God and human persons as well as love between human beings derives as an imitation and participation Saint John, Waldstein writes, describes the souls relation to God as a cycle of mutual giving The deep satisfaction and happiness of love is found in this cycle as a cycle of giving, not only of receiving see TOB 68 23 Saint John speaks of man and woman in union, and of the bride as giving herself There he gave me his breast there he taught me a sweet and living knowledge and I gave myself to him, keeping nothing back there I promised to be his bride.The characteristic feature of the spousal love between human beings and God is the totality of the gift of self, which is reflected in the totality of the orientation of affections toward the spouse I gave myself to him, keeping nothing back there I promised to be his bride Spiritual marriage, Waldstein observes, is the total surrendering of the self possession of each to the other, analogous to the consummation of love by sexual union in marriage As Wojtyla wrote Betrothed spousal love differs from all the aspectsor forms of love analyzed hitherto Its decisive characteris the giving of ones own person to another.This is something different from and thanattraction, desire, or even good will These are allways by which one person goes out toward another,but none of them can take him as far The fullest,the most uncompromising form of love consistsprecisely in self giving, in making ones inalienableand non transferable I someone elses property.Its hardly surprising that on his deathbed, John of the Cross wanted to hear not prayers for those about to die, but the Song of Songs.For much of the Churchs history, theologians were unsure how to interpret the Song of Songs, a book that can only be described as sexy It is also the book that has generated commentaries than any other in the history of the Church The Song of Songs is a poem spilling over with the joy of physical love It is fulsome with metaphor From the Bride My beloved is mine and I am his. He pastures his flock among the lilies. Before the dawn wind raises, Before the shadows flee, Return Be, my beloved, Like a gazelle, A young stag, On the mountains of the covenant. On my bed, at night, I sought him whom my heart loves. I sought him but did not find him. So I will rise and go through the city In the streets and the squares I will seek him whom my heart loves I sought but did not find him.The Bridegroom replies How beautiful you are, my love, How beautiful you are Your eyes behind your veil, Are doves Your hair is like a flock of goats Frisking down the slopes of Gilead. Your teeth are like a flock of shorn ewes As they come up from the washing. Each one has its twin, Not one unpaired with another. Her lips are a scarlet thread And your words enchanting. Your cheeks, behind your veil, Are halves of pomegranate. Your neck is the tower of David Built as a fortress, Hung around with a thousand bucklers, And each the shield of a hero. Your two breasts are two fawns, Twins of a gazelle, That feed among the lilies.For virtually all of Church history, the Song of Songs was considered an allegory of the love of God for His people Origen, Saint Basil, and Saint Gregory of Nyssa in the third century Ambrose in the fourth century and Saint Augustine and Saint Gregory the Great in the seventh century all interpreted the song in the same way At the Fifth Council of Constantinople in 533, they condemned the proposition, held by Theodore of Mopsuestia and not many others, that the song was a purely secular poem As one scholar put it, The free love of Song celebrates only one thing The splendid, radiant, and terrifying glory of eros between man and woman Eros itself vibrates without any other purpose than natural love Eros is sufficient unto itself The eros of the Song is not the agape of God In 1983 the Jesuit Blaise Arminjon, in his book The Cantata of Love, examined the Song of Songs from all the different angles He concludes that the Song is holy not despite being erotic, even carnal, but because it is those things There is apparently no concern for theology, apologetics, teaching or morality, Arminjon wrote Contrary to all the other books in the Bible the tone of the Song is so passionate, even so daring here and there, and it makes such an appeal to the senses to all the senses , that it is difficult to see how it could be suitable to the expression of Gods love The love of the bridegroom and his bride is that of beings made of flesh and blood.Mystics throughout Church history have particularly embraced the Song When he was seventeen in 1584, Saint Francis de Sales took a course in Paris on the Song, and it became his favorite book Saint Catherine of Siena and Saint Teresa of Avila both adored the Song of Songs And yet, throughout Church history, there was also suspicion of the Song Saint Gregory the Great made this assessment In order to inflame our hearts to His sacred love, God goes as far as using the language of our crude love and, stooping thus in his words, he raises up our understanding Indeed, it is through the language of this love that we learn how strongly we must burn with divine love.Saint Gregory of Nyssa actually advised that when we want to devote ourselves to contemplation of the Song , forget thoughts related to marriage so that, having extinguished all carnal appetites, it will be only through the Spirit that our intelligence will simmer lovingly, warmed by the fire that the Lord has come to bring on earth Saint Bernard of Clairvaux preached, One cannot start reading this book unless he has reached a certain degree of purity Any other reading would be unworthy if the flesh had not been tamed, if it had not yet been submitted to the Spirit by exacting discipline When he describes this sermon, Blaise Arminjon imagines in the audience a small Cistercian novice, still callous and poorly initiated in the Word of Wisdom, quite new to the science of love Despite that, he is listening to the words of the Abbot with delight He does not bother to ask himself whether he has reached the necessary degree of purity and maturity Quite simply He is happy.Here is real insight into the Song of Songs and its power Instinctively, in our conscience and beneath official dogma and theology, we know that there is something holy in our bodies and their sexual expression that in casting our eyes on the wonderful features of the beloved, we are casting our eyes toward heavenor, as John Paul II would have it in The Theology of the Body, casting our eyes back to the very beginning, when Adam and Eve lived untainted by sin I had felt it when I kissed Lisa for the first time I felt it when I touched Donna.In his biography of Saint John of the Cross, Crisgono De Jess tells of the great mystic on his deathbed Tell me about the Song of Songs, Saint John told the Carmelites who had started to read the prayers for the recommendation of the soul This other thing is of no use to me.Kurt Elling and the Fab Four might have said the same thing And Lisa and Donna.Up to the current day, matters of sexual moralityincluding contraception, abortion, premarital sex, and gay marriagehave polarized the Catholic Church In the wake of the turmoil of the 1960s, when liberal theologians challenged the Churchs traditional views on the subject, a schism has opened Much of the world, and many Catholics themselves, believe that the views of each camp are clear and well defined As Mark Judge reveals in this trenchant and illuminating defense of the teachings of his Church, this is far from the case.Without sensationalism, Judge is candid here about his personal journey from the playgrounds of the sexual revolution to his eventual belief in the need to combine sexuality with love and commitment to another person, not as an end in itself but rather as a particularly direct means of opening oneself up to Gods love He also sees support for the Christian theology on love in a seemingly unlikely place rock music He delves into the Churchs teachings on sexual matters, going back to the time of Saint Augustine, Saint Thomas Aquinas, Saint John of the Cross, and Pope John Paul II while also acquainting us with contemporary voices from within the Churchas well as from the pop charts From the Trade Paperback edition. Tremor Wikipedia A tremor is an involuntary, somewhat rhythmic, muscle contraction and relaxation involving oscillations or twitching movements of one body parts It the most common all involuntary can affect hands, arms, eyes, face, head, vocal folds, trunk, legsMost tremors occur in hands In some people, a Tremor unintentional, rhythmic movement to fro voice, legsMark Judge What we know about Brett Kavanaugh s days agoThe woman who accused sexually assaulting her when they were teenagers alleged was room during incident Meet s school friend, other man Mark Judge, allegedly participated Supreme Court nominee assaulted Christine Blasey Ford back high school, has become subject Classmate Fast Facts agoMark identified as classmate named letter alleging sexual misconduct that both men deny Key Witness To Alleged Kavanaugh said while declined speak before Senate Kavanaugh details parties in Sep , President Donald Trump for Court, Kavanaugh, being physically year old girl at party his years agoSupreme sworn Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing Hart Office Building on Capitol Hill I never saw act this way, have agoOne way tell whom you should shouldn t trust among reporters social media look how re summarizing letter, sent today Chuck Grassley by lawyerAre emphasizing part where says he no memory incident, which might sound like weaselly non denial if it Author Acculturated journalist filmmaker His books include Bliss Sex, Catholicism, Rock n Roll Damn Senators My Grandfather Story Washington Only World Series Championship work appeared Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal Brett character witness agoBrett extremely disturbing views women Black gay people writer Gauvreau born American He noted authoring several memoirs suburban Washington, DC childhood struggle overcome alcoholism, including Wasted Tales GenX Drunk God Man Georgetown Prep During A Tremor of Bliss: Sex, Catholicism, and Rock 'n' Roll

 

    • A Tremor of Bliss: Sex, Catholicism, and Rock 'n' Roll
    • 4.1
    • 386
    • Format Kindle
    • 194 pages
    • Mark Judge
    • Anglais
    • 20 May 2016

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