Some Thoughts on Justice and Truth…

Georges Bernanos 1888 - 1948

Georges Bernanos
1888 – 1948

“Christians without a brain and poor priests without a conscience, scared at the idea that they will be treated as reactionaries, invite you to Christianize a world that, along with all its resources, if being deliberately and openly organized in such a way that it can do without Christ, that it can assure justice without Christ, a justice without love, the same justice in whose name Love himself was scourged with rods and put on the Cross.  Young people who listen to me: I think there are many among you who are really Christians, who live their faith.  The people I speak of are appealed to in the name of justice; this is the way in which today a real blackmail is practiced on the consciences of the unfortunates I have just mentioned, and it makes them tremble.  It isn’t that they lack virtue or zeal, but they lack character, and, without exactly realizing it, they show signs of the same blindness and commit the same error as the clergy in the nineteenth century: in the name of order, this clergy ended up attributing a kind of divine right to the bourgeoisie.  Since power has now changed hands, those I speak of have developed the idea of another divine right, that of the proletariat. ― You will know the tree by it fruits: this is what Scripture teaches you.  A certain kind of justice is known by its fruits, even when it adorns itself with the name social. . . . That justice that is not according to Christ, in other words, justice without love, quickly becomes a rabid beast.” ― Bernanos, an Ecclesial Existence, Hans Urs von Balthasar, A Communio Book, © 1996 Ignatius Press, San Francisco, LOC catalogue number 95-79888, Page 42.

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Pierre Duhem, 1861-1916

Pierre Duhem, 1861-1916

“It is the care in minute exactness and precise analysis that distinguishes physical science from common sense.  It is this carefulness that gives to its laws a provisional and approximate character.  Everything we have just said about this character is, in some way, a commentary on this aphorism of Pascal: “Justice and truth are two points so fine that our instruments are too blunt to touch them exactly.  If they do make contact, they blunt the point and press all round the false rather than the true.”” ― Pierre Duhem, Essays in the History and Philosophy of Science, translated and edited, with introduction, by Roger Ariew and Peter Barker, Copyright © 1996 by Hackett Publishing, Inc., Page 109.

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John Lukacs

John Lukacs

“Justice is of a lower order than is truth, and untruth is lower than is injustice.  The administration of justice, even with the best intentions of correcting injustice, may often have to ignore or overlook untruths during the judicial process.  We live and are capable of living with many injustices, with many shortcomings of justice; but what is a deeper and moral shortcoming is a self-willed choice to live with untruths.  (All of the parables of Christ taught us to believe in truth, not in justice.)” ― Remembered Past; On History, Historians, and Historical Knowledge, by John Lukacs, Chapter I, Page 16, edited by Mark G. Malvasi and Jeffrey O. Nelson, ISI Books, Wilmington, Delaware, © 2005 ISI Books.

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John Lukacs

John Lukacs

“We, in this world―and perhaps especially in the twentieth century, when the air of our cities is polluted by a viscous film of empty words―are menaced less by the prevalence of injustice than by the prevalence of untruths.  It was Georges Bernanos… who… wrote that the pursuit of justice can lay the world to waste―which, when you think of it, is a particularly American predicament.” ― Remembered Past; On History, Historians, and Historical Knowledge, by John Lukacs, Chapter III, Page 377, edited by Mark G. Malvasi and Jeffrey O. Nelson, ISI Books, Wilmington, Delaware, © 2005 ISI Books.

About Michael

Retired military officer; retired Air Force civil servant; retired executive, DS Information Systems Corporation; writer; researcher; reader and avid yachtsman.
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