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  "There are no new principles in the spiritual life. The fundamental principle— to seek God and to be united to Him in Christ—never changes. Now if there is one thing for which modern conditions have produced a special necessity, it is the regular practice of spiritual reading." (p.1) "In fact the general effect of our modern environment is not merely negative; it has even a positive tendency to lead us away from God." (p.2) Quite a number of educated Catholics try to be satisfied with what they have learned of doctrine at school; this would seem to be a mistake. A man's mind develops after he leaves school, his knowledge and experience increase, his view broadens, his judgment matures, and he meets many problems that require a doctrinal solution." (p.8) "For the source of all the evils and errors in the intellectual life of today—the disease that makes much if its utterances, the mere wanderings of a feverish imagination—is the loss of metaphysics and of the ability for abstract thought. Now one of the first things one has to learn in metaphysical thought, is to think with ideas and not with phantasms. One can imagine contradictions, but one cannot think them. The modern mind seems to be unable to think otherwise than with its imagination. What cannot be imagined is—according to it—impossible; what can be imagined is, therefore, capable of being and existence. From this disease of the mind, we get sentiment for principle in morals, the particular for the general in argument, metaphor in place of reality, opinion for certainty, prejudice for judgment, quantity for quality, matter for the ultimate reality, and the whole host of false coins that are current in the intellectual commerce of today. (p.11) This 30 page booklet is excerpted from a 1947 best seller: This Tremendous Lover, by Father M. Eugene Boylan, O.C.R.


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