For Abelard, the death of Christ on the Cross did not, strictly speaking, redeem man: it only offered him an example of supreme humility, charity, and self-sacrifice. Bernard asserts, against Abelard, that Christ became man precisely in order to redeem mankind from sin, deliver man from the power of the devil, and to become, instead of fallen Adam, the new head of a redeemed and sanctified human race. Jesus, says Saint Bernard, not only taught us justice but gave us justice. He not only showed us His love by dying for us on the Cross, but by the effects of His death He really and objectively causes His charity to exist and act in our hearts. In, doing so, He actually destroys sin in our souls and communicates to us a new life which is totally supernatural and divine. The effect of our redemption is therefore a complete and literal regeneration of those souls to whom its fruits are applied. Without this dogmatic basis the whole mystical theology of Saint Bernard would be incomprehensible. The purpose of all his mystical and ascetic teaching is to show us how to co-operate with the action of divine grace so that our redemption and regeneration may not remain a dead letter but may actually influence all our conduct and find expression in every part of our lives
Halt! How are you? What have you been doing? Where's Abelard? How's Crowley? What's this all about?" "I'm glad to see you rate my horse more important than our Corps Commandant," Halt said, one eyebrow rising in the expression that Will knew so well. Early in their relationship, he had thought it was an expression of displeasure. He had learned years ago that it was, for Halt, the equivalent of a smile.
Halt! How are you? What have you been doing? Where's Abelard? How's Crowley? What's this all about?" "I'm glad to see you rate my horse more important than our Corps Commandant, " Halt said, one eyebrow rising in the expression that Will knew so well. Early in their relationship, he had thought it was an expression of displeasure. He had learned years ago that it was, for Halt, the equivalent of a smile.
In how few words, for instance, the Greeks would have told the story of Abelard and Heloise, making but a sentence of our classical dictionary.... We moderns, on the other hand, collect only the raw materials of biography and history, "memoirs to serve for a history," which is but materials to serve for a mythology.
Henry David Thoreau
Look, three love affairs in history, are Abelard and Eloise, Romeo and Juliet and the American media and this President at the moment. But this doesn't matter over time. Reality will impinge. If his programs work, he's fine. If it doesn't work, all of the adulation of journalists in the world won't matter.
We have scholars galore, and kings and emperors, and statesmen and military leaders, and artists in profusion, and inventors, discoverers, explorers - but where are the great lovers? After a moment's reflection one is back to Abelard and Heloise, or Anthony and Cleopatra, or the story of the Taj Mahal. So much of it is fictive, expanded and glorified by the poverty-stricken lovers whose prayers are answered only by myth and legend.
Maybe we should have gone with him, " he said, a few minutes after his friend was lost to sight. "Three of us would make four times the noise he will, " Halt said. Horace frowned, not quite understanding the equation. "Wouldn't three of us make three times the noise?" Halt shook his head. "Will and Tug will make hardly any noise. Neither will Abelard and I. But as for you and that moving earthquake you call a horse... " He gestured at Kicker and left the rest unsaid.
Maybe we should have gone with him," he said, a few minutes after his friend was lost to sight. "Three of us would make four times the noise he will," Halt said. Horace frowned, not quite understanding the equation. "Wouldn't three of us make three times the noise?" Halt shook his head. "Will and Tug will make hardly any noise. Neither will Abelard and I. But as for you and that moving earthquake you call a horse..." He gestured at Kicker and left the rest unsaid.
The fact is, the great intellectuals of the western religious tradition from Augustine to Aquinas and Peter Abelard became philosophically dominant. The intellectual tradition was preserved. The great intellectuals of the Islamic tradition like Averroes and Avicenna became heretics whose influence disappeared under the weight of rote preaching and practice. Islam as a result has a moral code, a legalistic system of right and wrong, but no evolved ethical tradition.
R. Joseph Hoffmann