July 7, 2007


Category: Miscellaneous,Theology :: Permalink

Thomas Howard on the significance and importance of doors:

Hence the closed door.  It is not so much saying, “Stay outside there, all you unwashed,” as “There is an inside here, protected from mere randomness and clutter, in which things begin to be set in their proper order and seen in their true light.”

This door is for closing and for opening.  To slam a door in the face of a suppliant is not the same act as closing the door after you as you welcome the stranger in from the tempest.  In both cases a door has closed, though.  In the former, it was a sign of hell, that is, the attitude that says, “I’ll have my things and damn your need.”  In the latter, it was a sign of heaven, that is, the attitude that says, “Here.  What we have is for you.”

There has to be a “here” — a special place fenced off from indeterminateness — before the host can say, “Come in here.”  You can’t invite somebody into a generality. — Hallowed Be This House, pp. 19-20 (paragraph breaks added).

This book, by the way, has been reprinted as Splendor in the Ordinary, and was a major inspiration behind (not to mention the source of the title of) Doug Wilson’s My Life for Yours. Both books tour the house and talk about the significance of various aspects of the house, though they touch on different things.  I’ll likely blog some more from Howard later.

Posted by John Barach @ 12:12 pm | Discuss (0)

Leave a Reply