Speak Up!

If there have been great minds from the past, it is because they will have been thinking on great matters, which means, explicitly or implicitly, matters of God, and if they were truly great minds, their thinking will have been not just destructive. One such mind was certainly England’s Shakespeare. As a Catholic he grappled with his country’s apostasy being fulfilled just as he was reaching his prime, around 1600. But that turning of England to Protestantism meant that if he did not want to be hanged, drawn and quartered, he had to disguise his Catholic message, as Clare Asquith proved in her book of 2005, “Shadowplay,” where she took English literature way above English “patriots” and the dwarves of literary criticism.

To take just one example, in the book’s Appendix on Shakespeare’s Sonnet 152, she shows how from start to finish, beneath the obvious application to a woman Shakespeare has known, there is a complete second meaning of far wider application to himself as a writer who has failed to warn his countrymen as he should have done. Here are the 14 lines of the sonnet together with their obvious meaning:—

In loving thee thou know’st I am forsworn
But thou art twice forsworn to me love swearing,
In act thy bed-vow broke and new faith torn,
In vowing new hate after new love bearing.
But why of two oaths’ breach do I accuse thee,
When I break twenty? I am perjured most,
For all my vows are oaths but to misuse thee,
And all my honest faith in thee is lost;
For I have sworn deep oaths of thy deep kindness,
Oaths of thy love, thy truth, thy constancy,
And, to enlighten thee, gave eyes to blindness,
Or made them swear against the thing they see.
    For I have sworn thee fair: more perjured eye,
    To swear against the truth so foul a lie.

You know I break a promise by loving you, but by
swearing you love me, you break two promises: you
forsook your husband’s bed, then returned to him
(“new faith,” “new love”) only to forsake him again.
But why do I accuse you of breaking two oaths when
I break twenty oaths? It is I the greater perjurer, for
To your own harm I have sworn oath upon oath about
your goodness when I well knew you were not good.
Thus I have been swearing that you are very kind,
very loving, very truthful, very constant, and to
put you in a good light, I have made me see what I
Did not see, or, have sworn I saw not what eye saw.
    For I have sworn you were good. What terrible
    Perjury on my part, when that is so untrue!

Interestingly, the sonnet’s text makes more sense in its hidden meaning, referring to faithless England, than in its apparent meaning, referring to Shakespeare’s unfaithful mistress. Thus “Merrie Englande” had been a faithful wife of the Catholic Church for 900 years. By Henry VIII’s Act of Supremacy (1534), (“In Act”) England broke its marriage (“bed-vow”) with the Catholic Church and took Protestantism as its lover. Then it remarried the Catholic Church under Mary Tudor (1553, “new faith,” “new love”), only to fall back into adultery with Protestantism under Elizabeth I (1558, “new faith torn,” “new hate” of the Catholic Church). But Shakespeare (1564–1616) blames himself for much worse infidelity, because down these years he has repeatedly glorified (“to enlighten thee”) England with its unfaithful Tudor rulers, for instance in his History Plays, glorified to England’s harm (“to misuse thee”), because as a Catholic he knew full well that Protestantism would be the ruin of “Merrie Englande.” Sure enough!

And today? The pattern repeats itself: for over 1900 years Catholics were faithfully married to the true Church, but with Vatican II (1962–1965) the mass of them followed bad leaders into more or less of adultery with the modern world (“bed-vow broke”). Then Archbishop Lefebvre (1905–1991) led many back to the truly Catholic Church (“new faith,” “new love,” or renewal of the old faith and the old love), only to see his successors at the head of the Society of St Pius X which he founded in 1970 fall back into an adulterous longing for a reunion with Conciliar Rome, by a “new hate” for the pre-Conciliar truth.

Conclusion? Any Shakespeares amongst us, or any Catholics, must speak up, that Pachamama Rome is, as such, nothing other than an abomination, to be shunned.

Kyrie eleison.