A Mental Chomp
“I am incurably convinced that the object of opening the mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid.” – G. K. Chesterton
The mind is a precious thing. Besides an eternal soul, the mind is the most wonderful gift God gave to the human person. Secular media is highly critical of ‘closed-mindedness,’ equating it with intolerance, arrogance, and intellectual snobbishness, when it is actually a very healthy thing to do, most particularly when there is danger lurking. If a dangerous dog were to stray into your backyard, you would immediately sequester yourself and your family behind locked doors, would you not? Why then are we ordered in no uncertain terms to keep the door of our mind wide open at all times? The mind is a terrible thing to waste, but it is even more terrible to leave it unguarded, lest it is invaded by the enemy. Relativism, secularism, modernism, and many other ‘isms,’ are afoot. They are wolves, prowling about guised as harmless lambs, ready to invade a good mind, and destroy whatever truth is found there.
While it is important to be aware of these errors and to be equipped to defend against them, one must use great caution in how they train to fight intellectual attack dogs. Arm yourself with veritas, with truth, and study how the great warriors of the mind have fought and conquered such errors in their time. Only by learning from those who know will we glean knowledge and wisdom to protect our own mind from the dangers of the worldliness we are bombarded with daily.
Who is safe to open the door of your mind to though, you may ask. A very sound question! Consider admitting the One Who created it! The Designer best understands the design, so the One Who is Way, TRUTH, and Life, would be the best possible choice. There are many who have, wisely, opened their minds to close them again on the most solid food a mind could receive – The Word of God. (Also suggest opening your hearts (and mouths) to close them on the Word made Flesh! But I’ve already ranted about that.) There is nothing to fear in this battle for the mind because we stand on the shoulders of intellectual giants. And those giants stand on the shoulders of THE Giant – Christ.
Christ, Who IS Knowledge.
Christ, Who IS Wisdom.
Christ, Who IS Truth.
And when you know Truth, He will set you free.
Suggested writers from whom one may glean highly effective mental battle tactics:
St. Augustine of Hippo
St. Thomas Aquinas
St. Therese of the Child Jesus
St. Teresa of Avila
Bishop Fulton Sheen
Peter Kreeft (Personal favorite! –Mary’s Ghillie)
(This list is by no means complete – just a few men and women who have easily-accessed writings of an excellent nature that I would recommend sinking your mental teeth into!)