The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected.
–G. K. Chesterton
Commenter seventiesjason wrote:
as for this Chivalry thing Dalrock is stuck on……..I never knew a medieval code that was for warfare somehow in 1324 or whatever ruined marriage in 2019. I still fail to see the connection
There is a famous G. K. Chesterton quote where he warns of the danger of removing laws or customs that we don’t understand the purpose of:
In the matter of reforming things, as distinct from deforming them, there is one plain and simple principle; a principle which will probably be called a paradox. There exists in such a case a certain institution or law; let us say, for the sake of simplicity, a fence or gate erected across a road. The more modern type of reformer goes gaily up to it and says, “I don’t see the use of this; let us clear it away.” To which the more intelligent type of reformer will do well to answer: “If you don’t see the use of it, I certainly won’t let you clear it away. Go away and think. Then, when you can come back and tell me that you do see the use of it, I may allow you to destroy it.”
In the case of chivalry*, we now know why and when a host of related anti Christian concepts have been adopted as if they were Christianity. Chivalry is the answer to:
- Why Christians instinctively invert the roles of husband and wife.
- Why Christians believe that romantic love is sanctifying, and that women’s sexual desire is both virtuous and points to male virtue.
- Why Christians see no fault divorce and other sins by wives as God’s plan to improve men.
- Why Christian men are extremely uncomfortable with the idea of calling out women’s sins.
- Why Christians believe that men must boldly declare their romantic intentions at the beginning of the “Christian” courtship ritual, and why once married we are told that Christian men must pursue their wives.
We only need Scripture to see that bullets 1-4 are contrary to Christianity, and bullet 5 doesn’t come from Christianity. But without understanding the root of these false teachings it is more difficult to convince our fellow Christians to reject them. This is especially true since these are conservative errors, and what Chesterton is describing in the gate quote above is a core aspect of the conservative thought process.
*Chivalry as commonly used refers to what academics call courtly love. When I use the term chivalry in this post I’m referring to the common usage.
See also: Call me unchivalrous.