Chesterton on the spiritual benefit of heatwaves

Current staTus

Current staTus

I ran across the following Chesterton quotation today and found it apropos for two reasons. First, today is the anniversary of Chesterton’s death at the age of 62 in 1936. Second, while the weather here in upstate South Carolina has been mild—even occasionally pleasant—for about two weeks now, the three weeks or so before that were an increasingly miserable foretaste of late July or August heat. No cloud, no wind, just sizzling on the griddle of the piedmont.

From a June 11, 1910 column in The Illustrated London News:

The chief gift of hot weather to me is the somewhat unpopular benefit called a conviction of sin. All the rest of the year I am untidy, lazy, awkward, and futile. But in hot weather I feel untidy, lazy, awkward, and futile.
— GK Chesterton

I resemble that remark. You can read a longer chunk here.

Leave it to Chesterton to find some kind of spiritual benefit in what would otherwise just be inconveniently hot weather. Of course what he’s cheekily describing here is the self-knowledge and humility that should come through all hardship, something he is by no means the first to comment on.

A good reminder for the next time I’m doubling up on anti-perspirant.

Oh—my “Mount Writemore” t-shirt arrived in the mail yesterday. It depicts Chesterton, CS Lewis, George MacDonald, and JRR Tolkien on a much more interesting version of Mt. Rushmore. It’s available in a variety of sizes and colors (mine is “asphalt”) from the Babylon Bee. It’s also available as a poster. It’s deeply silly and I’m very excited about it—a very Chestertonian response I think.