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Re: [lewiscarroll] The Character of F D Maurice

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  • keith
    Kate, nice to have a reasoned point of view for once!! Keep on writing and leave the weeds! Keith ... From: Kate To: lewiscarroll@yahoogroups.com Sent:
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 1, 2002
      nice to have a reasoned point of view for once!!
      Keep on writing and leave the weeds!
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Kate
      Sent: Tuesday, April 02, 2002 5:19 PM
      Subject: [lewiscarroll] The Character of F D Maurice

      Okay! Having spent a good deal of time this morning engaged in therapeutic stuff like pulling up weeds from the horse paddock - I'm back, and ready to post again. But this time I will keep some protective clothing next to me and maybe I won't overreact!  (Sorry!)
      Back to Maurice, who I'm determined to defend to the death!  By the way - of course he had faults - he never set himself up to be a saint.
      The original statement which Mike quoted from Cohen, referred to self. Here is Maurice's take on it, and mine, in my unfortunate last posting!
      "God is Love. God commands us to love. The world will not own God's love. The world commands us to be selfish. The world says that we may enllarge our circle indefinitely, but that Self is and must be the centre of it.  (Now someone - compare this with Carroll's poem - Fame's Penny-Trumpet - any takers here?) And we all are inclined to believe the assertion. . . Now, this is just what St John was determined not to do.  The world in his day was the same as the world in ours.  It jeered at all efforts to assert any other principle other than the principle of selfishness. . .  what St John desired was to be an ordinary man; not to set himself above his fellow in any respect. . . . faith told him that the existence of no man, that the existence of no society, can stand upon selfishness.  It must stand upon the opposite of selfishness, upon that which selfishness is seeking to undermine and destroy.  Its root must be in love.  That is the one binding force."(The Epistles of St John. F D Maurice)
      Now - compare this last with Sylvie's discovery, in S & B.  It is all about love.    That is what Carroll wrote about, that is what Maurice wrote about.  It was their raison d'etre.  And it is probably very hard to understand - just as hard as it has always been, as Maurice points out.  It explains why Carroll was so giving of his money to people who seem to us to be undeserving.  But let's continue.
      "The world's mockery lasts from generation to generation, but. .  each generation accepts some precious legacy from the self-sacrificing man, whose faith it has cast out as evil."(St John - Maurice again Lecture XVI)
      He struck at the class-system in England - feeling that the Church was largely neglecting the great mass of the people - what he termed 'the stuff of humanity after class distinctions have been removed from it.  Bowen (The Idea of the Victorian Church) has this to say about Maurice. What Maurice wanted in the nation was not a combination of working men who would refuse to work, but a combination of men of all classes for the purposes of work.  He was influenced by Coleridge's idea of the clerisy, which referred to the body of university men, artists, scientists, tradesmen, and others - like those who taught in the Working Men's College - who sought to reveal to the whole of society the power of the Incarnation at work.
      To that end, ex-Chartists like Thomas Cooper were enlisted to teach in the Colleges - the same Thomas Cooper who wrote "The Purgatory of Suicides - CLD had a copy of this in his library. Ruskin, the pre-Raphaelites, all had work to do in the Working Men's Colleges. Carroll read Kingsley's 'Alton Locke' also, and wished that he could do more.  But I suppose that a direct tribute to Maurice appears in S & B Concl. (Chapter 19) 'For those are few we hold so dear' - an extract from Tennyson's poem dedicated to F D Maurice.  To quote the narrator "Tennyson said that of a worthier friend than me." 
      Given Maurice's view on classes in English society, it is perhaps not too surprising that the redoubtable Augustus felt as he did.  Maurice's supporters and friends were people like Kingsley, Cooper, Stirling, Thomas Hughes and Arthur Stanley, Julius Hare, Ellison, Carlyle and Ruskin, the Rossettis and William Morris, George MacDonald, Tennyson.   But within all of this - he recognised that nothing would be effective if one lost sight of Christ.
      HAoping this is of help.
      Kate lyon 

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