“The object of opening the mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid.”
“The object of opening the mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid.”–G.K. Chesterton
Occasionally one hears of someone’s thinking described as “black and white.” With few exceptions, this is not said as a compliment. To be sure, life is complex, and often we are faced with decisions and situations in which prudential judgments are needed (that is, the discernment of which virtuous action to take in a given circumstance in order to achieve good and avoid evil). However, not always is this obvious. There are many mysteries in life that we do not understand. Prudential judgment requires prayerful reflection and counsel. Also present today is a perception among many that there are no moral absolutes–real truths that one can know. For those who subscribe to this way of thinking, life is ambiguous; not black and white, but essentially gray.
There is a perverse attractiveness to the gray life. If life is without moral absolutes, then one is seemingly liberated from the demands of things like commandments, morality, and religion. One can then embrace all sorts of things; and thereby be considered “open minded,” “tolerant,” and “progressive,” terms today that seem to have great value in secular America. Read more