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  • Writer's pictureDenise Tolan

The Daily Dick: Day 15: Musings From a Sixth Reading of the Great Book

Updated: Feb 9

Chapter 9: Day 15: The Sermon

“Woe to him who seeks to please rather than appal! Woe to him whose good name is more to him than goodness! Woe to him who, in this world, courts not dishonor! Woe to him who would not be true, even though to be false were salvation! Yea, woe to him who, as the great Pilot Paul has it, while preaching to others is himself a castaway.”



Whew – Father Mapple knows how to close a sermon!

There’s a lot to take in here. Pretty much – don’t be a Starbuck. Here are the highlights as I see them. Don’t sit back in silence in the face of evil. Don’t worry so much about your own good name that you let atrocities go by for fear of people talking about you. And don’t be the person who ‘courts not dishonor.’ Don’t be so worried about your reputation, that you live not wanting to be seen, heard from, spoken of.

The last adage from Father Mapple is beyond cool: Don’t tell others to be good people if you are an asshole. I’m summarizing, of course.

As we read on, we will see how so many of the characters to come break the ‘rules’ Father Mapple says we must adhere to. I forgot for a few minutes how cleverly Ishmael got out of the way to let Father Mapple take center stage. What a sermon!

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