Friday, September 16, 2005

Marriage & Sanity

Justin Dyer, a graduate student at Oklahoma University, writes about our culture's current problem understanding the nature of marriage. Is marriage whatever our culture defines it to be? Or is marriage something not created by man but recognized by our laws? Is marriage when any two people come together in love? How about a mother and her son? Or three adolescent girls? Or a horse and his boy? Our culture will have to say "Whatever else that may be, it is not marriage."
The tale of our society’s search for a new meaning and a new articulation of marriage reminds me of a novel that G.K. Chesterton once envisioned writing.

The story was to be about an "English yachtsman who slightly miscalculated his course and discovered England under the impression that it was a new island in the South Seas."

After experiencing all of the fascination and terror of discovering New South Wales, he realized, with a gush of happy tears, that he was actually back in Old South Wales.

The novel was to be a romantic allegory of Chesterton’s own philosophic voyage. "I did try to found a heresy of my own," he later remarked about his younger days. "And when I had put the last touches to it, I discovered it was orthodoxy."

And so as we set sail to found our own heresy regarding marriage, I hope that nature and reason will bid us to discover anew the wisdom behind the public orthodoxy that we have collectively inherited.

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