Reading Marilynne Robinson

Reading Marilynne Robinson’s book of essays When I Was a Child I Read Books, I’m met by someone who is thinking deeply about society and attempting to bridge the chasm between society/science/materialism and faith.  She is not pushing ideologies that must be believed, but is rather creating pathways into conversation, raising questions that people aren’t asking, and populating a renewed community.

Here are some tidbits of her writing. Enjoy.

  • We inhabit, we are part of, a reality for which explanation is much too poor and small. (7)
  • There is at present a dearth of humane imagination for the integrity and mystery of other lives. (45)
  • I think of the acts of comfort offered and received within a household as precisely sacramental.  (93)
  • In these two narratives (Christmas, Easter) narrative fractures the continuity of history. . . . At the same time they have created a profound continuity.  (127)
  • There is . . . the urge, driven by righteousness and indignation, to conform reality to theory.  (152)
  • . . . we should cease and desist from reductionist, in effect invidious, characterizations of humankind.  (158)
  • . . . moment by moment, every one of us experiences, along with the whole of the cosmos this great mystery of being, this great unfolding of ineluctable, irreversible time.  (185)
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