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The Great Books Reader: Excerpts and Essays on the Most Influential Books in Western Civilization

John Mark Reynolds

Top 10 Best Quotes

“God bestows great gifts on human beings with perfect justice, but not All gifts we are given come from God. Some gifts come from society or culture, and it is here that problems develop.”

“Erasmus’s Bible-saturated mind. His was a mind too broad for fundamentalism, which rejects reason, and too honest for intellectualism, which rejects revelation.”

“Chaucer, like Homer, writes about a journey, but as a Christian he has a different goal. Homer wanted to go home, but Chaucer's pilgrims want a place of man's true home: paradise”

“Try to get inside the world of Homer and see what it would be like to think with his view of reality. Only then can you begin to judge it, because only then do you really understand it.”

“If Christianity is true, then every argument will, if pursued to the end, lead to Jesus.”

“For Aristotle, it's not enough simply to act in accordance with the reason once in a while. We must cultivate habits of virtue that develop into a firmly established moral character over a lifetime.”

“By reading older books we get a taste of the conversation of Heaven.”

“Austen knew nothing of our modern quest for equality. People are not numbers, and so they are never “equal.” Some folk are higher placed than others, have more money, were more fortunate in their parents, or are brighter. These gifts do not come to us by merit but by the unfathomable providence of God.”

“while modernity is not Christianity, modernity is the product of a Christian civilization. Lately the defects of modernity have been made plain to us while its virtues have been taken for granted.”

“Tolstoy does not tell us how things look to the author; he tells us how they look to the characters. In short, he does not use simile and metaphor. (That astonishing assertion in Wood’s review is what got me started reading Tolstoy in the first place. How can anyone write without using metaphor and simile? That would be like—never mind.)”

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Book Keywords:

reading, civilization, assumptions, equality, perspective, understanding, discipleship, openness, habits, engagement, christianity, writing, personality, heaven, glory-of-god, classics, evangelism, empathy, apologetics, insight, culture, difference, character, grace-of-god

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