Thursday, March 12, 2009

I Love Our Pope

Letter of His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI to the Bishops of the Catholic Church Concerning the Remission of the Excommunication of the Four Bishops Consecrated by Archbishop Lefebvre

A highlight:
The Church’s teaching authority cannot be frozen in the year 1962 – this must be quite clear to the Society. But some of those who put themselves forward as great defenders of the Council also need to be reminded that Vatican II embraces the entire doctrinal history of the Church. Anyone who wishes to be obedient to the Council has to accept the faith professed over the centuries, and cannot sever the roots from which the tree draws its life (Emphasis added).
And another:
The real problem at this moment of our history is that God is disappearing from the human horizon, and, with the dimming of the light which comes from God, humanity is losing its bearings, with increasingly evident destructive effects (Emphasis added).
And finally:
At times one gets the impression that our society needs to have at least one group to which no tolerance may be shown; which one can easily attack and hate. And should someone dare to approach them – in this case the Pope – he too loses any right to tolerance; he too can be treated hatefully, without misgiving or restraint (Emphasis added).

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Something worth reading

Sandro Magister, "A Philosopher Reissues the Pope's Wager: To Live as if God Exists."

A brief article on Robert Spaemann's newest - at least as of October 31, 2008 - book, which does not yet seem to be available in English. Following the article are some excerpts.

My favorite bit:
With the loss of the idea of truth comes the loss of the idea of reality. Our speaking and thinking that which is, is structured in an inevitably temporal form. We cannot think of something as real without thinking of it in the present, meaning that it is real "now." Anything that has been only in the past, or will be only in the future, has never been and never will be. That which is now, at one time was in the future and will be in the past. The "futurum exactum," the future perfect, is inseparable from the present. Saying that a present event will no longer have been in the future means that in reality it does not exist even now. In this sense, everything real is eternal (emphasis added). There cannot be a moment in which it will no longer be true that someone has felt a suffering or joy that he is feeling now. And this past reality is absolutely independent of the fact that we remember it.
That might be the most profound thing I've read in awhile. I wish I read either German or Italian so I could pick up a copy of this book. Hopefully we'll eventually get an English translation. Or, barring that, I'll eventually work my way through my list of "Languages to Learn" to German or Italian.