Sunday, January 17, 2016
The fragility of human nature is quite beautiful to contemplate. The sight of a man holding an umbrella against the rain recalls the bonds of mortality but also the heroism of a soul who overcomes these bonds by living an authentic Christian life.
There is a grace perhaps that inspired men to design umbrellas. They thought of the hats, the neatly arranged hair and the finely tailored coats that were ruined by rain and snow and even bright sunlight. These designers of umbrellas probably realized how closely the state of the body reflects the state of the soul. So they wanted to preserve order, prevent dishevelment. They made umbrellas as a tribute to marvelous virtue and impeccable civility.
The fortitude of people who carry umbrellas is especially admirable; they are always ready for a storm, to protect themselves from its effects. Rain does not deter or frighten them since the civilized business of Christian people goes on even and especially amid unfriendly conditions. This is such a perfect example of the counter-revolutionary spirit! I cannot speak enough to its symbolism and uplifting effect.
Today umbrellas are less common. We see people who run through the rain in sweatpants on the way to the gym and even finely dressed businesspeople whose appearance is ruined by a few raindrops. These modern men do not acknowledge their own fragility and how closely it must be guarded against damnation, they do not recognize and uphold the standards of civilization, they do not cultivate the fortitude to reject those things that will ruin the body or the soul.
Thus in my opinion, the umbrella is a very good thing for the Catholic lady.