Musing on G.K. Chesterton

In his famous article, All Things Considered, G.K. Chesterton wrote, “An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is only an adventure wrongly considered.” Chesterton’s life was an adventure, rightly considered. He did not see life as an accident or an inconvenience, but an immeasurable gift. Because he lived his life with a profound gratitude, Chesterton knew how to laugh and engage the world with a humility and grace.

Ian Ker wrote, “The unfailing humor that was so significant an aspect of Chesterton’s personal life has its parallels in the enormous importance he attached in his writings to humor as a medium for comprehending and interpreting life… One can, without exaggeration, find in Chesterton a mini-philosophy, not to say a mini-theology, of laughter.” If you have read him at all, you know that his humor is a natural and winsome part of his personality. Our world is in desperate need of those who can imitate his example. We need to be able to take ideas seriously without taking ourselves too seriously.

A few insights and quips…
Chesterton said, “An art school is a place where about three people work with feverish energy and everybody else idles to a degree that I should have conceived unattainable by human nature.”

In regards to his size (6’4, 320 lbs.)
“I suppose I enjoy myself more than most other people, because there’s such a lot of me having a good time.”

Once, when walking down the street during WWI, Chesterton was confronted by a patriot who inquired as to why he was not out at the front. He wittily replied, “ma’m, if you will come around this way, you will see that I am.”

Question at a lecture:
“What are your thoughts on hell?” He quipped, “I regard it as a thing to be avoided.”

Other funny quotes:
“The modern world is a crowd of very rapid-racing cars all brought to a standstill and stuck in a block of traffic.”

“A good novel tells us the truth about its hero; but a bad novel tells us the truth about its author.”

“A woman uses her intelligence to find reasons to support her intuition.”

“Education is the period during which you are being instructed by somebody you do not know, about something you do not want to know.”