Courtesy Calls Again: "A Gem of a Book"
Alice von Hildebrand
Book-review on Courtesy Calls Again, by Judith Fife Mead & Marian Therese Horvat,
Courtesy Calls Again is a response to a call: reminding us that to have a soul substantially united to a body demands from us to seal every single bodily posture, every single word, every single physical action with spirituality.
(Los Angeles: Tradition in Action, 2009), 152 pp.
This gem of a little book has a Benedictine fragrance. The Father of Western Monasticism puts great emphasis on the spiritual meaning of bodily postures and words.
The secularized, materialistic world in which we are now living makes us forget that to be a human being is to be a person, made to God's image and likeness. Consequently our body is NOT A BODY OF AN ANIMAL. It is the body of a person, that is, every single facet of our bodily existence calls for the SEAL of personhood.
Alas, this deep Christian truth is so forgotten today that we desperately need to be reminded that whether we eat, drink, rest, speak, greet others, sit, walk: all these activities which SOME BELIEVE TO BE THINGS WE SHARE WITH ANIMALS, are precisely features in which the abysmal difference existing between an animal and a person having a body are strongly underlined.
The human body must be "personified". This little book is lovingly teaching us how to do it.
Posted January 14, 2010
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