Mimetic desire in Lacan

From the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy: “Developing Freud’s theorisation of sexuality, Lacan’s contention is rather that what psychoanalysis reveals is that human-beings need to learn how and what to desire. Lacanian theory does not deny that infants are always born into the . . . . Continue Reading »

Freud and Lacan

Louis Althusser offered this helpful description of Lacan’s structuralist revision of Freud: “In his first great work The Interpretation of Dreams . . . , Freud studied the ‘mechanisms’ and ‘laws’ of dreams, reducing their variants to two: displacement and . . . . Continue Reading »


Boethius says in his De Arithmetica that the number 5 represents an infinite circle: “For 5 times 5, which makes 25, starts from 5 and ends in the same number, 5. And if you multiply that by 5 again, the end turns out to be 5 again. For 5 times 25 makes 125, and if you multiply by 5 again, . . . . Continue Reading »

Scripture’s eloquence

De Lubac cites this passage near the beginning of his Medieval Exegesis : “The eloquence of Sacred Scripture takes many shapes, and its meanings are many and varied. For this reason someone has said: He compares things that are celestial with things that are earthly, so that likenesses that . . . . Continue Reading »


In his study of the influence of medievalism on postmodern theory, Bruce Holsinger briefly reviews the reception of de Lubac’s work: “a number of his books were officially withdrawn from institutional libraries across the Catholic world, hundreds of copies of the just-published Corpus . . . . Continue Reading »

Sermon Notes, Second Sunday of Advent

INTRODUCTION Jesus’ birth was announced by angelic choirs. It was also greeted by shepherds, to whom the angels first announced the birth of the Christ. Why would the news go to shepherds first? THE TEXT “And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that . . . . Continue Reading »

Exhortation, First Sunday of Advent

When Jesus ascended into heaven, He poured out His Spirit on the church. According to Paul, He also gave gifts to men. These gifts included apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers, given to the church to equip the saints for their work of service. Paul gives us this picture of the . . . . Continue Reading »

Philosopher or poet?

The doctrine of accommodation (which is rife in the tradition, as basic to Thomas as to Calvin) says: When God speaks in His natural voice, He speaks like a philosopher. He speaks like a poet in Scripture because He’s dumbing it down for humans imprisoned in a sensible world. Scripture, . . . . Continue Reading »

Ritual and Ceremony

The terms “ceremony” and “ritual” became sneer-words nearly as soon as they were introduced into English and other European languages, according to Edward Muir’s Ritual in Early Modern Europe (Cambridge, 2005): “Around the turn of the sixteenth century, as Thomas . . . . Continue Reading »