quod pro nobis traditum est

Thursday, September 19, 2013

the chicken and the egg

. . .

Putting the Cart Before the Horse

"The family built upon marriage, and not upon the individual, is the basic unit of society. In fact, each family is a miniature society — analogous to a miniature state — out of which the larger political community is constructed. This is more than a theory; it is an historical fact: A country like Scotland is built upon the MacDonalds, the MacIntyres, the Robertsons, and so on.

"As G.K. Chesterton pointed out in The Superstition of Divorce, it is no coincidence that totalitarian regimes typically seek to weaken both the Church and marriage. The reason is precisely because both of these institutions claim to be independent societies with their own constitutions. Since they exist within the same territory as the state, from the perspective of a tyrant, they obstruct the extension of his own absolute authority.

"Now, if the family built upon marriage is the building block out of which the state is formed, the family is antecedent to the state . . ." [source: William Newton, newoxfordreview . org]