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Compass Rose


ong before the TV, the internet, or the light bulb, long before the printing press was invented or the idea of a public school presented, families sat around campfires or burning hearths listening to stories that helped shape the minds of children, civilization, and society into something that made sense. Each of these stories attempted to provide a well-marked map to some hidden treasure, or what we call purpose. But each of these stories also had a moral (which was the real treasure) found with the help of what cartographers call the Compass Rose. Although artistically beautiful in themselves, they were not merely ornamental. They were essential. The stories, like maps, had a point and a purpose. While each may have shown meandering streams, or raging rivers, rolling hills, deserts, plains, and valleys (without manmade borders and boundaries) the Compass Ross, with its pointed degrees of engineering preciseness, would mark North, South, East, and West. The Compass Rose was often in itself a work of art.

Today, unfortunately, the family hearth is gone the way of the campfire and children are listening to strangers (who have no moral compass). They present themselves as Honest John, inviting Pinocchio to run away from home to some Happy Island.  Most of us know that Honest John is not honest, and Happy Island is a hallucination. Even Aesop’s fables had a Compass Rose to guide a tender conscience, not hide it, to steer it, not sear it. The Public School has become a dark enchanted forest filled with wolves dressed in sheep’s clothing and so many gingerbread houses promising diversity (unlike home), equity (without sweat equity), and inclusion (which is a delusion) to all the Hansels and Gretels of the last generation.  The Wicked witches, big bad wolves, orcs, and trolls and now in charge of our children. The Bible is the Road Map to Righteousness through a ruined world.  Jesus, the Word of God, became flesh and now may be found by faith at the place and hill called Calvary.  Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no man cometh unto the Father but by me.” (Jn. 14:6). Jesus is the Compass Rose who died on the cross to pay for our sins and arose on the third day, who now, not only points the way but says, simply, “Follow me.”   -id