Thursday, June 24, 2010

Saint Thomas Aquinas, Pope Benedict XVI, Faith and Reason

Religion is a lot of irrational nonsense, emotional foolishness, and not something that real men could - or should - be interested in. Right?

In some cases, right.

And I see that this blog went off-topic in the first paragraph. That may be a new record for me. (I've posted about men, women, Christianity and a marketing campaign gone wrong before.)

What I meant to focus on was the notion that religion is - by its nature - irrational. Even anti-rational. Quite a few people believe that it is.

I don't. Even though I've run into enough 'religious' individuals and groups who seem to go out of their way to prove that religion is nonsense. Which is why I converted to Catholicism. Which is yet another topic.

But just because some folks treat faith as if it was dependent on emotion ('do you feel saved?) - I don't have to go with the flow.

Long before I converted, or even knew much about Catholicism, I'd figured that the universe couldn't have been put together by someone who didn't have much sense. Turns out, I'm not the first person to come up with that notion:
"...'The Summa Theologiae, his masterpiece, reflects Thomas' serene confidence in the harmony of faith and reason, and in the ability of reason, enlightened by faith, to come to an understanding of God and his saving plan.'..."
(Pope Benedict XVI, general audience (June 23, 2010))
(also quoted in Catholicseeking)
I lifted that quote from someone else's blog - and verified it against a video taken at the Vatican this week.

The Thomas Pope Benedict XVI was talking about is Saint Thomas Aquinas, one of the Catholic Church's intellectual heavy hitters. We've had quite a few of those, over the last couple millennia.

"Benedict XVI says believing in God is logical and reasonable"

romereports YouTube (June 23, 2010)
video, 1:13

" For the third week in a row, Benedict XVI dedicated his general audience to St. Thomas Aquinas. The Pope cited Thomas' work as a source of profound theological truths."

Related posts:
A tip of the hat to catholicseeking, on Twitter, "Benedict XVI says believing in God is logical and reasonable," Catholicseeking (June 24, 2010)) for the heads-up on Benedict XVI's remarks, and that video.

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From time to time, a service that I use will display links to - odd - services and retailers.

I block a few of the more obvious dubious advertisers.

For example: psychic anything, numerology, mediums, and related practices are on the no-no list for Catholics. It has to do with the Church's stand on divination. I try to block those ads.

Sometime regrettable advertisements get through, anyway.

Bottom line? What that service displays reflects the local culture's norms, - not Catholic teaching.