Imatge de l'autor

Harry Blamires (1916–2017)

Autor/a de The New Bloomsday Book

44 obres 2,615 Membres 24 Ressenyes 2 preferits

Sobre l'autor

Harry Blamires is a highly respected teacher and author of important works including The Christian Mind and The Tyranny of Time.

Inclou aquests noms: H. Blamires, Harry Blamires

Crèdit de la imatge: Harry Blamires 1998 By FloreBlam - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

Obres de Harry Blamires

The New Bloomsday Book (1966) 758 exemplars
The Bloomsday Book (1966) 126 exemplars
On Christian Truth (1982) 80 exemplars
The offering of man (1960) 30 exemplars
Cold war in hell (1955) 23 exemplars
The devil's hunting grounds (1954) 20 exemplars
Word Unheard (1969) 14 exemplars
Highway to Heaven (1984) 14 exemplars
Marks of the Maker (1987) 4 exemplars
Meat Not Milk (1988) 4 exemplars
Correcting your English (1996) 3 exemplars
The age of romantic literature (1990) 3 exemplars
Blessing unbounded: A vision (1955) 3 exemplars
Kirkbride and Company (1961) 2 exemplars


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Blamires' "The New Bloomsday Book" is an incredible scholarly achievement. Line by line he gives us all the background needed to understand the context and direction of Ulysses. With detailed references he also provides all the information necessary to delve even deeper into Ulysses. Blamires' work is both accessible to the reader and invaluable for any further study of Ulysses.

A question that did come to mind in reading Blamires was what is the distinction (if any) between providing information/context on a work and interpreting a work. Blamires does both.

In all honesty, I lack the expertise, intellect, and/or credentials to credibly challenge Blamires' interpretations of Ulysses. Yet, I do begin to chafe when Blamires begins to "interpret" and provide the "meaning" of sections. One could say, reasonably, that if I don't want interpretation, don’t read a "guide". I accept that charge.

However, that does leave me with another question. What is the validity of "interpreting" works of fiction? And, is a novel meant to be decoded or simply experienced? Is the author simply dressing up for show her/his theories and/or perspectives in the wardrobe of elaborate prose and plotting? Or, could it be that the author actually intends the ambiguity produced in their work as it reflects the ambiguity of life/experience? Do we do a disservice to the author and the work when we provide exegesis? Do we create the illusion of orthodox and heterodox interpretations of a work?

I lean to the position of experiencing the work. But I also realize that my extremely meager formal education in literature probably both supports and requires that position.
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1 vota
colligan | Hi ha 11 ressenyes més | Dec 20, 2022 |
Written in 1999 about the loss of the Christian assumptions of the West. Highlights various areas, from the family, through education to democracy, and other issues, where previous Christian principles are now ignored, denigrated or relegated to the private sphere. Comes across as a bit bad tempered at times. Quite light weight, not thorough, perhaps tries to cover too many fields.
Packer only wrote the foreword.
oataker | Sep 10, 2020 |
The Christian Mind: How Should a Christian Think? was originally published in 1963 and written by Harry Blamires who has been described by sources as an Anglican theologian, a literary critic, and a novelist – attributes to which this writer would include noetic philosopher. The edition of Blamires’ work that is under consideration herein forms part of the Christian Family Library compiled and published by Family Christian Press. This edition obviously has the purpose of being an educational tool as the original text and supplemental discussion questions are included in the total work by the editors. At less than 200 pages, the investment in reading time is not overly demanding, but the content requires a close read at times to grasp the fuller purpose and implication of Blamires thoughts. The text is divided into two parts. Part One explores the actual lack of having a Christian mind while Part Two explores the Christian mind as related to six different areas of life. A comfortable and profitable read that achieves the highly-desired purpose of helping the Christian incorporate a more eternal mindset to one’s life.

The identification of the problem, as perceived by Blamires, is put forth early in the work. Although the Christian mind does exist it exists within the narrow range of personal conduct (which one can hardly argue against), but in the broader frame of reference conforms itself to a secular evaluation and mindset for general mental activity and interaction with the world at large. No doubt this tendency, which is discussed by other authors, is a mindset which may be traced to the Enlightenment and the rise of objective, discrete, and measurable data as the only reliable and independent standard for mankind. Anything that cannot be examined and understood by the scientific mind is considered personal preference; therefore, lacking any generalized authoritative stance for the bulk of humanity. From this is grows the idea that the secular mind takes precedence, blunting the Christian mind from expressing itself. The secular mind thinks within a “frame of reference” which is only defined by the bounds and limits of this physical world, while the Christian mind thinks and accepts all things as related, “directly or indirectly, to man’s eternal destiny as the redeemed and chosen child of God” (44).

This then leads directly into the thoughts that are expressed in the first chapter of Part Two, The Marks of the Christian Mind, that the Christian mind has the prime mark of a supernatural orientation. This life is not viewed as terminating with the death of the individual, but is viewed as the beginning of one’s eternal life that finds completion in eternity. The Christian mind “cultivates the eternal perspective” (67). From this beginning, Blamires continues with an examination of the Christian mind as related to the awareness of evil, concept of truth, acceptance of authority, concern for the person, and its sacramental cast. In each of these categories Blamires draws lively, thought provoking, and sometimes humorous examples to help contrast the idea of Christian thought verses secular thought. There are times when Blamires’ vernacular is obviously rooted in his world and therefore the references can be obscure, but the context typically provides a frame of reference so little confusion is left regarding the author’s meaning and direction of thought.

Some remarks on the final chapter of Part Two might be in order, especially for those that may be unfamiliar with the idea behind what Blamires refers to as “a sacramental cast” (173). The Anglican Church and the Catholic Church, although distinct entities, do share some fundamental theological positions, ceremonial liturgy, and a significant role for the Church in the life of the individual. A sacrament therefore may be briefly defined, and likely poorly described as one outside those denominational traditions, as a rite or ceremony that requires the oversight of the Institutional Church to be considered a valid expression of that rite or ceremony. One doubts that this is the thrust to which Blamires gives his final thoughts, viewing his use of sacramental cast as the idea of having an essential worldview that recognizes the value and inclusion of the Divine in all aspects of life, particularly those areas which may be thought of as personal morality. Specifically, Blamires addresses in this chapter the problem of allowing the world to define for the young and/or less mature the nature and attitude of passionate emotion. Passionate emotion in the secular mind is distilled into mere physiologic function and stimulation, a position often exploited by the world, whereas the Christian view of relationship and self-sacrifice – as drawn from the example of the Divine – is only a secondary consideration.

Overall, a remarkable piece of Christian theology beneficial for those inclined to invest their time. Some quotes from Blamires:

“Christianity is emasculated of its intellectual relevance. It remains a vehicle of spirituality and moral guidance at the individual level perhaps; at the communal level it is little more than an expression of sentimentalized togetherness” (16).

“For the Christian mind earthly well-being is not the summum bonum, as pain and death are not the worst evil. Eternal well-being is the final aim and end of things here” (82).

“No Christian, thinking christianly, divesting himself of the easy self-deceptions of secularist thinking, will pretend that Christianity is an easy faith – easy to accept, easy to explore, easy to rest in, easy to explain. It isn’t” (120).

“The familiar antithesis between mechanization and Nature largely misses the point. We do not lament the increasing dependence upon mechanical contrivances because it removes man from the natural, but because it removes man from the supernatural” (163).

“Unless youth’s stirring urges and visions are seen to point beyond time, they will be worshipped as ends in themselves” (182).

“It is scarcely surprising that we have taken many steps already towards a withdrawn and departmentalized Christian spirituality severed form contemporary culture by the drugged inoperancy of the Christian mind” (190).
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SDCrawford | Hi ha 2 ressenyes més | Mar 28, 2017 |


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