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Sunday, March 23, 2014

Faldoni, parts 2932 - 2935

2932. But as beautiful and as moving as what the friar said to Faldoni was, it did not seem to have any effect on him. It was one of those situations like where the rich give advice to the poor and it falls on deaf resentful ears. 

The living can’t give advice to those about to die, or the rich explain their imagined secrets of success to the poor. The truth is only useful when you find it yourself, and Faldoni, although he said nothing, was unwinding the secrets of his little universe in his own mind as the friar rambled on.

What the friar was trying to do with his sophistries and analogies about mosaics was to praise the possessions of the church to such an extent that the very fact that such treasures existed was perhaps not a proof of anything at all. The friar was thinking that ideas that needed a gilded  setting for their presentation might be, for that very reason, suspect.

The friar was indulging in sarcasm, plain and simple, but sarcasm, which is only stating the opposite of what you actually think, is always lost on the simple man, who assumes at all times that people mean what they say. But the friar was no about to give up, and so he turned to a more outlandish argument. He said.

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