4 thoughts on “The Archbishop of Canterbury on Capitalism”

  1. Posted 11/04/2014 at 16:32 | Permalink

    It is hard to see how ‘contemplation’ alone would have transformed living conditions for the better for so many millions in the past two hundred and fifty years. If one is generous, I suppose one could hope that the Archbishops mean well — but their preference for destroying capitalism seems like a recipe to make nearly everyone worse off. They almost seem to be nostalgic for the Dark Ages, when superstition reigned.

  2. Posted 11/04/2014 at 19:15 | Permalink

    He has a vested interest being a state employee.

  3. Posted 11/04/2014 at 21:04 | Permalink

    The Archbishop’s comments about economics are somewhat puzzling, given his previous career in business before his ordination to the clergy.

  4. Posted 20/05/2014 at 07:48 | Permalink

    I fear your preacher may have only heard the first line and not understood the rest of the hymn. The first two verses read:

    While in this dark and dreary land
    where sorrows oft assail
    let holy souls exalt their eyes
    to joys within the vail (sic).

    There sits enthroned the glorious Lamb
    while saints adore around,
    angels in shining circles round pay
    their homage most profound.

    Try Googling “dark and dreary land” and you get the full text in Hymnary dot org. The hymn may once have been popular, but it only appeared in two hymnals (possibly full score and text only versions), first in 1833, and then a later edition of the same in 1856.

    One may wonder how much the author (unknown) may have been inspired by Henry Bulwer-Lytton, auther of “Paul Clifford” (1830), the first line of which starts “It was a dark and stormy night”

    A “dark and dreary land” may have been descriptive of England in 1833 – one year after the Great Reform Act, and still affected by the waste of capital in the Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars.

    Novels published in these years include “Cloudesley” (Godwin) and “The Fortunes of Perkin Warbeck” (Mary Shelley), both 1830; “Crochet Castle” (Peacock) and “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” (Hugo) both 1831; “Bizarro” and “Castle Dangerous” (Scott) and “Eugene Aram” (Bulwer-Lytton) all 1832; and “Eugene Onegin” (Pushkin), “Ferragus, Chief of the Devorants” (Balzac) and “Sartor Resartus” (Carlyle) all 1833. No wonder the hymn writer referred to a “dark and drreary land”!

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