Welcome to the Ink Desk

Enjoy the ponderings of the Star's contributors and add your own thoughts. As this section develops, we hope it may become a medium for an exchange of ideas among those who are working towards the cultural revival.

  • December 6th, 2012Julia Caesarby Joseph Pearce

    In this morning's Telegraph (UK), Charles Spencer reviews an all-female production of Julius Caesar. Apparently it is set in a women's prison. He concludes:

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  • December 4th, 2012Saruman Meets Macbethby Joseph Pearce

    What would happen if Shakespeare had ever read The Lord of the Rings? It's a mind-boggling thought. This link may provide the answer!



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  • December 4th, 2012To Be Equals Not to Beby Kevin O'Brien

    A friend of mine gave me a CD to listen to while driving.  It was a recording of speeches made at a conference at Clear Creek on John Senior and the Integrated Humanities Program at KU, a program that made so many Catholic converts over the years.

    One of the presenters made an interesting comment.  He said that Modernity is an attack on Being.

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  • December 4th, 2012Love and Responsibilityby Kevin O'Brien

    In my last post I wrote about Dante and "Custody of the Eyes", particularly how Dante's genuine mature purity gives the lie to the faux mature purity of those who think the rules don't apply to them.

    And just now I came upon this insightful paragraph by Stephen Zelnick in the Ignatius Press Critical Romeo and Juliet - (emphasis mine)

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  • December 4th, 2012The Hunt for Gollumby Joseph Pearce

    Here's the link to a very good low-budget movie about Aragorn's hunt for Gollum. It's a little under 40 minutes in length and is well worth the investment of time. It's more Peter Jackson than J. R. R. Tolkien but will delight Middle-earthlings nonetheless.

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  • December 4th, 2012Custody Battleby Kevin O'Brien

    One of the more ridiculous blog battles last liturgical year was the Christopher West inspired claim that those of so-called "mature purity" need not practise "custody of the eyes".  "Custody of the Eyes", for those who don't know, is the simple and humble practise of not gazing upon objects that would excite our passions to sin.  In most cases, that means (for us guys) not gaping at naked ladies or at those who are provocatively dressed.

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  • December 4th, 2012The Lord of the Rings and Hannibal Lecterby Joseph Pearce

    If The Lord of the Rings were written like a Hannibal Lecter movie...

    Adapted by Brendan King from the novel "Red Dragon" by Thomas Harris.

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  • December 4th, 2012Brake for a Smile Breakby Dena Hunt

    For anyone who missed the videoclip of the circus visiting the Vatican:

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  • December 3rd, 2012The Life of the Mindby Joseph Pearce

    Herewith my customary apology for not being able to write substantial posts to the Ink Desk due to my hectic travel schedule. In the absence of any really lengthy post, I'm hopeful that this sort of postcard will suffice instead.

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  • December 3rd, 2012What the Pope Really Saidby Pavel Chichikov

    His Holiness Benedict XVI released a new book called Infancy Narratives only a few weeks ago. The popular press presented it as debunking our age-old traditions about Christmas – no ox and ass at the crib, no warming of the infant Child with their breath, no angels caroling above the astonished shepherds, and Our Lord not born in the year 0.

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  • December 3rd, 2012Legal Cases Move Forwardby Pavel Chichikov

    Noted below is the status of one particular case moved by a plaintiff against the Affordable Care Act, which requires employers to provide free healthcare coverage which includes payment for contraceptives, sterilization and some abortion-inducing drugs:

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  • December 1st, 2012Script-Doctor, Heal Thyself!by Kevin O'Brien

    There's this thing in Hollywood called a Script Doctor.  This Script Doctor is a paid professional who takes your screenplay, and regardless of how literary or well done it is, charges you tens of thousands, nay even hundreds of thousands of dollars, to make it into a hackneyed formula piece.

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  • December 1st, 2012Is Mordor Across the English Channel?by Joseph Pearce

    No sensible person believes that the European Union is anything but a grotesque tyranny and, for this reason, I was very happy to see the UK Independence Party do so well in the recent by-elections in England. Nonetheless, I would not seek to go as far as the makers of this video who seem to suggest that France is synonymous with Mordor and that the French are in league with the Orcs. All will be revealed ...
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  • December 1st, 2012Monty Python Meets The Lord of the Ringsby Joseph Pearce

    And here's another irreverent but humorous alternative ending to The Lord of the Rings. Gandalf meets King Arthur and somehow the Ring gets mixed up with the Holy Grail. Confused? You will be!
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  • December 1st, 2012Lord of the Rings Alternative Endingby Joseph Pearce

    Brendan King has sent me this amusing alternative ending to The Lord of the Rings. It's not for the purist but I found it amusing.
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  • November 30th, 2012Titanic Hero and a Teenage Heroineby Joseph Pearce

    As the centenary of the sinking of the Titanic draws to a close, I am delighted to learn that Cady Crosby, the fifteen-year-old author of Thomas Byles: Titanic Hero, has received the Catholic Writers' Guild Seal of Approval. She is the youngest ever recipient of this coveted award.

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  • November 30th, 2012Newman A TO Z: Convertsby Joseph Pearce

    The sight of a convert is the most cogent and withal the most silent and subduing of arguments.

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  • November 30th, 2012True Freedom, Sort Ofby Dena Hunt

    In another post a couple days back, Joseph Pearce quoted Edmund Burke: “Liberty itself must be limited in order to be possessed.”  The quote reminded me of the brief lesson I used to give my high-school students before a particular assignment. At its most basic level (for high school students) freedom is understood as freedom of movement. A volunteer consents to sit in a chair and have his hands loosely tied behind him in order to bind him to the chair.

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  • November 27th, 2012Confessions of an Ex-Hobbitby Joseph Pearce

    As hobbit mania continues to spread in the build-up to the release of Peter Jackson's film, I was particularly pleased to read this positive appraisal of Tolkien's children's classic by a contempoary English novelist.

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  • November 27th, 2012Newman A to Z: Baptismby Joseph Pearce

    The Sacrament of Baptism is not a mere sign or promise, but actually a means of grace, an instrument, by which, when rightly received, the soul is admitted to the benefits of Christ's Atonement, such as the forgiveness of sin, original and actual, reconciliation to God, a new nature, adoption, citizenship in Christ's kingdom, and the inheritance of heaven, - in a word, Regeneration. And next, Baptism is considered to be rightly received, when there is no positive obstacle or hindrance to the reception in the recipient, such as impenitence or unbelief would be in the case of an adult; so that infants are necessarily right recipients of it, as not being yet capable of actual sin.

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What are your thoughts on the subject?