Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Blithering Wisdom

Jimi Hendrix’s former lover: "As he got more into drugs, I would sit and listen to Jimi giving interviews, spouting the most ridiculous acid[LSD]-inspired stuff which the journalists would soak up as if it were timeless wisdom."

I am trying to explain to my editor, of German-Canadian background and upbringing, the uniquely English problem of Archbishop Williams. I've tried to tell him that no, no one ever expects anything Rowan says to make any sense. That is not the point of Anglicanism. The last thing anyone wants from an Anglican bishop or minister is sense, meaning or truth.

Rowan's particular form of blithering is what the English have come to expect and want from their spiritual leaders. It is not what he says, but the sound that is desirable.

A great deal of the spell that Rowan casts is lost when one simply reads what he has said. One has to hear it, with the lovely trustworthy not-too-plummy educated accent, the deep, mellifluous voice, the soothing cadence...like being read a bed time story by your beloved grandpa. It's not what's in the story that matters, it's how it makes you feel.

The sounds are wise sounds, soothing and relaxing sounds.

Too much thinking only spoils it.

Too much smell of burnt Marshwiggle foot will break the spell.

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