Sunday, October 26, 2008

The Catholic Intellectual Tradition

Sir Basil's priest video reminded me of something that I learned at Georgetown. Catholics have thought, pondered, written, rewritten, critiqued, dissected, and postulated about, of, or on every possible theological, spiritual, philosophical matter or question the human mind has yet conceived. The Roman Catholic Church did not arrive at its current position on any issue, large or small, without an unbelievable amount of serious thought.

If you have an issue with the church's position on something, then fine. But know two things: 1) The Roman Catholic Church is not ignorant of any evidence or reasoning you can bring to bear. 2) A lot more thought has gone into the church's position than yours.


Basil Seal said...

Quite right FLG, they have been thinking about it every day for 2000 years...I like when he says "you are entitled to your half-arsed musings on the divine"...Love it.

alan_howe said...

Pardon the heathen, please, but I am not certain 2,000 years is an accurate count of the Catholic Church's contemplation of all available evidence.

Martin Luther's revolution and the church's subjection of Galileo to the Inquisition seem to point to some misdirection ("indulgences" are no longer for sale) and the inflexibility of the church's officials if not the church itself. I do not know how to reconcile an open church "mind" with the sacking of Alexandria's store of human knowledge, either.

That said, I applaud more modern and thoughtful stances like the Vatican's repeated statements that it accepts evolution--a liberal and dramatic difference from some evangelical thought here in the US and, I contend, an example of the lesson learned with Galileo. It appears to me that the Catholic Church began considering a wider world of evidence sometime after they learned Galileo was correct, not since the death of Christ.

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