1. Orual was surprised to learn that Redival had been lonely because she felt that Redival had her looks and charm, and that next to Redival, she, the ugly child, was the one to be pitied. She felt that Redival received attention due to things which she did not possess, and therefore was hated and scorned, but more ignored than anything else.
2. Yes, I think there was some truth to Ansit’s accusations, but I think Orual ought to be pardoned to some extent, because those were not her intentions, and it never occurred to her to think of it that way.
Yes, I do, but it’s a twisted kind of love and doesn’t rightly deserve the title, but there. It reminds me of that verse in the Bible… where we’re being told that we must love our enemies, and that what merit is it for one to love people who love them back, what effort is there in that… to compare with the effort to love and forgive one’s enemies… I have to find that verse. xD I think that’s my problem… I can think of things I’ve read in the Bible, but I can’t think where on earth they are, and I probably don’t remember them word for word, so I can’t even look it up… Anyway, back to the question. See? I knew her “love” for Bardia wasn’t quite what she made it out to be. I think Ansit’s accusations and, later, Orual’s own thoughts on the matter explained it the way I was trying to. Although, she accused herself of hating him, and I didn’t read it to go quite so deep as that. She may be right, and at the same time, I wonder if maybe she’s being too hard on herself. “Did I hate him, then? Indeed, I believe so. A love like that can grow to be nine-tenths hatred and still call itself love.” It’s not that she’s incapable of any other love — I think she truly loved the Fox and I’m glad she was able to experience that true kind of father-daughter relationship (lol, I’m talking about her like she’s a real person… but, then, isn’t she? in a way?) — but she obviously didn’t realize exactly what kind of love she had for people until her confrontation with Ansit. I think all human beings are in danger of having that kind of twisted love for people. What counters that is Jesus’ teaching of unconditional love. I think Orual’s love for the Fox was the closest she came to loving with an unconditional love.
3. I think Orual herself gave the explanation. She asks why such a plain thing like Arnom’s explanation of Ungit and her son need be wrapped up in a such a “filthy tale so that no one could understand the telling.” The shapeless stone is like the plain truth, the image in robes like the truth so cunningly hidden, one cannot make it out anymore. I think that is why Orual needs to become Ungit, after a fashion; she needs to be stripped of those things which keep even herself from seeing the truth.
4. In some ways I think it ought to be almost comforting. She thinks she’s hit bottom, but somehow, something her father said makes me think he’s trying to show her that she hasn’t, and there the truths that she tried so hard to hide from finally enter her mind. Why her father is the taskmaster, I don’t know…
5. Orual finally reads her complaint for what it really is. She reads out loud the things she stored up inside of her for so long… the things she tried to hide from herself, like what her ‘love’ for Bardia really was. And when she had poured it out, confronted it, seen it for what it really was, it ceased to torment her… “When the time comes to you at which you will be forced at last to utter the speech which has lain at the center of your soul for years, which you have, all that time, idiot-like, been saying over and over, you’ll not talk about joy of words. I saw well why the gods do not speak to us openly, nor let us answer. Till that word can be dug out of us, why should they hear the babble that we think we mean How can they meet us face to face till we have faces?”
6. Trick question!!!! LOL. Well… It’s like the “Hate the sin, not the sinner,” ‘cept this one would be “Love the sinner, not the sin.” God loves us all, but is, of course, repulsed by our sin, because it is everything that is totally against His Nature. Therefore… in answer to the “She also says that they can only love a soul that is beautiful. Do you think that these things are true?” It is not that God can only love a soul that is beautiful, it is that he only loves the beauty in the soul. And yes, the gods do help Orual, though not the way she was expecting.
7. He ought to have told her straight up those times when he was unsure, when he did not know the answer, and did not wholly believe even what he said.
He means that if they were all justice and no mercy, no man would ever be saved. If without God’s mercy sent through our Redeemer, what hope would we have of heaven? What hope would we have at all? So much depends on the Mercy of Love. We by ourselves cannot gain eternal life.
8. Every sin hurts not just our individual souls, but the whole Church. That’s… such a huge concept to try and internalize.
“Since all the faithful form one body, the good of each is communicated to the others. … We must therefore believe that there exists a communion of goods in the Church. But the most important member is Christ, since he is the head. … Therefore, the riches of Christ are communicated to all the members, through the sacraments. As this Church is governed by one and the same Spirit, all the goods she has received necessarily become a common fund.” (CCC #947)
“All of us, however, in varying degrees and in different ways share in the same charity towards God and our neighbors, and we all sing the one hymn of glory to our God. All, indeed, who are of Christ and who have his Spirit form one Church and in Christ cleave together.” (CCC #954)
“The term ‘communion of saints’ refers also to the communion of ‘holy persons’ (sancti) in Christ who ‘died for all,’ so that what each one does or suffers in and for Christ bears fruit for all.” (CCC #961)
9. Amen, amen, I say to you, unless the grain of wheat falling into the ground die, itself remaineth alone. But if it die it bringeth forth much fruit. He that loveth his life shall lose it and he that hateth his life in this world keepeth it unto life eternal. John 12:24-25
It refers to dying to oneself, that the sinful, corrupted human nature must learn to die in order to make room for the Divine. It took her a long time, and she had a lot of help, which she most definitely needed, but I think she did accomplish it, and the gods were just, but also very merciful.
10. It’s like how we ought to try to be more like Jesus. Like in the song… “Lord, this is my Christmas prayer… when they look at me, I want them to see You.” I suppose it’s kind of different, because Orual was… well, forced, kind of… but that’s the closest I can get to it.
She becomes like Psyche by her understanding of and trust in God, by her emptying of self and allowing the graces of mercy to fill the void. Her soul, her poor, misled, tortured soul, was mended, yes. The ugliness of hatred and anger came out when she read her complaint, the misconceptions formed by the Fox’s teachings were clarified and apologized for, and most of all, I think, what really helped was seeing herself suffering for Psyche. She did love Psyche, though she understood little what Love really was, and seeing that she had done something to right the wrong surely helped her a great deal.
Tricky question… mmmph. I read somewhere.. an article on the Theology of the Body, I think, that the soul is made visible through the body and its actions. If it makes any sense… Orual and Psyche made their souls visible through their actions and words. They are visible souls. Well… we all are. Ahh! I don’t know how to word this! Does that make sense to you? I’m trying here…