Lew, it is fitting, on this glorious day of Easter, to recall Saint Augustine. His City of God was the most widely-read book besides the Bible for nearly a thousand years, and forged the foundation for the freedom that developed and flourished in the West in Christendom, and nowhere else.
To Obama and Pastor Wright, of course, them’s fightin’ words. But Augustine made one thing perfectly clear: the individual’s highest priority is the salvation of his soul. The state cannot save our soul. Hence, the state is limited, metaphysically and irreversibly. Our freedom to seek our most important goal is irrevocable.
Every tyranny has begun by denying that eternal goal so the tyrant could totally control his victims and make his nightmares a reality. If there is no higher law than Caesar, then Caesar rules without competition.
Saint Thomas More limns it perfectly: “Men desire authority for its own sake that they may bear a rule, command and control other men, and live uncommanded and uncontrolled themselves.”12:05 pm on April 12, 2009 Email Christopher Manion