Yet More SSPX Rumors

by Jimmy Akin

in Uncategorized

Last week I covered a story concerning a rumored document on apparitions and I pointed out that the rumor was poorly sourced, that there wasn't the kind of multi-source rumor groundswell that one would want before concluding that a Vatican rumor was likely true.

And, sure enough, within a few days there were indications leaking out of the CDF that the rumor was not true.

Now, it may be true or not. Time will tell. But right now things don't look promising for that rumor in the short run.

This is completely different than the situation regarding a different rumor.

Specifically: The rumor is that Pope Benedict has signed a document "removing" the excommunication that applies to the four Lefebvrist bishops (and possibly to the late Archbishop Lefebvre and his late collaborator, Bishop Antonio de Castro Mayer).

The rumor is also that this document will be released very soon, possibly as soon as Friday or this weekend.

Unlike the previous rumor, this rumor presently seems very well sourced, with apparent confirmation from multiple avenues, including respected Vatican-watchers, so it's much weightier, as far as Vatican rumors go.

It also fits in with the known desire of B16 to reconcile the SSPX and the fact that they have long insisted on this step as part of a reconciliation program.

If the fundamental rumor–that there is such a document–is true then (whenever it is released), I'll be very interested to see who it applies to (just the four living bishops, the other two also, anybody else), what reasons will be given for the removal of the excommunication, what canonical category this action will be placed in, and what the response of the SSPX will be.

One thing that is unlikely to happen immediately, if such a document comes out, is a simultaneous full reconciliation of the SSPX with the Church and a regularization of its status as a priestly fraternity.

That's going to take more time.

But if the news is true then it means that Pope Benedict has concluded that this is a worthwhile step toward the hoped-for reconciliation of the SSPX.

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{ 195 comments }

Giacinto January 22, 2009 at 10:24 pm

Don’t a lot of the SSPX believe that Pope Benedict isn’t really the real pope and that our Mass isn’t valid? So if he removes the excommunication and they reconcile, they would have to admit that our Pope and Mass are valid. Maybe some of the moderate (do they exist?) SSPX might find it acceptable and want to come back but I would think that barring the whole church returning to the Tridentine Mass and some kind of new Papal election, there would always be some SSPX split from the fold. Anyone have thoughts?

Shane January 22, 2009 at 11:08 pm

I agree, generally speaking, with Giacinto.
Additionally, I personally have some significant reervations about the idea of lifting the excommunications for one very important reason, which is about the repentance, or lack-there-of, of the SSPX bishops.
If the SSPX bishops have not acknowledged their wrongdoing, then it seems to me to be lifting the excommunications would be a very bad idea, and if indeed it were done in the name of unity, it would be a false unity. Certainly, bringing as many of those involved with the SSPX back to the Church is a very, very important goal, for the sake of the Church as a whole and for the sake of their souls. However, it is they who left the Church – regardless of whether or not they felt pushed out or otherwise – and it is they that must return, not the Church that need return to them.
Excommunication serves at least two purposes (that I can think of now; there may be more): to protect the Church from error, and as medicine for the errant soul. If these bishops, without acknowledging their wrongdoing, are returned to communion, then both purposes are frustrated. The Church is not protected, as the message is sent that dissidence and disobedience are tolerable and carry no need for repentance. Second, the bishops’ souls do not obtain to the effect of the medicine: they are not brought to repentance.
It is important to note here the precise nature of their wrong so as to avoid any misunderstanding. It may be that the Missal of 1962 was never legally abrogated, as it seems Pope Benedict has at least alluded to, if not explicitly stated. As such, the SSPX certainly did no wrong merely in the use of that Missal. Were it only that, then one could even argue that they could be regarded in the class of those saints who followed that which was right when much of the rest of the Church did not. However, the wrong for which the excommunication was imposed was the disobedience to the express order of the Roman Pontiff in their consecration. This is an entirely different matter, and there is no legitimate excuse for this variety of wrong.
The question then lies in whether or not these bishops have accepted responsibility for and repented from the matter for which they were excommunicated. If so, then – with some slight reservations about the general attitude of some of the SSPX adherents – wonderful! If not, and indeed they are restored to communion, then I would question it. I greatly respect and am thankful for Pope Benedict, but in such areas as this a pope can err, and I would be of the opinion he had were he to lift these excommunications without true repentance from the bishops.
God bless

BillyHW January 22, 2009 at 11:13 pm

Jimmy, how could you not mention the video? Surely you’ve seen it.

Anonymous January 23, 2009 at 12:08 am

Let me preface this by saying that I am not a supporter of the SSPX. I do not assist at their Masses and, while I sympathize with them in some respects, I do have my differences.
However, the SSPX is definitively not sedevacantist (refusing to accept Benedict XVI as the legitimate Successor to St. Peter) nor do they refuse the validity of the 1970 Missale Romanum (they believe it is extrinsically–not intrinsically–inferior to the Traditional Mass and advise against attendance at the services of the 1970 Missal, but they do no reject it’s validity and ability to confect the Sacrament).
Also, those that are expecting some sort of recanting of the 1988 consecrations are going to be disappointed. The argument in this regard that the Society puts forth is that the participants sincerely and subjectively believed that the crisis in the Church constituted a state of emergency necessitating moving forward with the consecrations without papal mandate. When the Holy Father met with Bishop Fellay in Rome in 2006, he commented that the state of the Church in certain countries (especially France, where the Society has it’s deepest roots) may well rise to such a state of emergency. Knowing that such a demand for a public recanting would not be met, I believe it is logical to expect that the Holy Father will state that because of the parties’ sincere understanding of the situation, even those consecration of bishops without papal mandate is objectively an excommunicable act, that this lack of full knowledge and full consent of the will renders the excommunications as null and void.
I do not care for certain elements of the Society and I believe both the Society and Rome understand that further doctrinal discussion and other negotiations need to be undertaken before a final reconciliation and disposition of the Society is reached. However, this was not the reason for the decree of excommunication that was issued in 1988 and it would be a violation of justice if the Holy Father agreed that the excommunications were not valid as stated above and yet refused to remedy the situation due to other concerns.
Regardless of our views of the situation, we should pray especially during the Church Unity Octave for a full reconciliation of the SSPX and that they may serve our Holy Father’s efforts against the forces of modernism.

Michael January 23, 2009 at 7:26 am

Well, I for one hope this comes to pass as is being anticipated, not just because the Holy Father wills it and it may lead to resolving the SSPX situation, but also because I was excoriated on this very blog several years ago for suggesting this very possibility. Ed Peters himself tore into me for stating that the Pope could be holding onto the option of dismissing the excommunications by acknowledging that a perceived state of emergency did in fact mitigate the actions of the Lefebrvists. I won’t expect any apologies but I will feel some vindication nonetheless.

Matt January 23, 2009 at 8:44 am

This is irrelevant to the particular post. I just wanted you to be aware of a conversation going on about you at Beggars All

Matt McDonald January 23, 2009 at 8:44 am

Shane,
repentance, or lack-there-of, of the SSPX bishops.
I wonder, what about we excommunicate ALL of the disobedient and heretical priests, and bishops such as Cdl. Mahoney, and then, when they repent the pope will lift their excommunications?
The problem is that what the bishops did, which I still decry, was not nearly as bad as the disobedience shown by many bishops, priests and lay people, and yet they do not incur such a response. It is fundamentally unjust to have such a disproportionate reaction. It is also not in the best interests of Holy Mother Church to have such a split with many good orthodox priests being unavailable to meet the needs of her people, and to assist with the restoration of things that have been broken during the “reforms” after Vatican II.
Please stay OUT of the rabbit hole of calling me a Vatican II denier, I am not, I just recognize the many evils done by the so-called “spirit” of Vatican II that are in contradiction to it.
God Bless,
Matt

Dean Whinery January 23, 2009 at 9:41 am

As my dear old dad was wont to say, “If is such a big word with so few letters.”
If the excommunication is lifted, what will be the status of the four bishops? Sure, the question of valid/illicit is not the question at all. They ARE bishops. Will they be vagante, will they be given title to ancient sees? How does a “personal prelature” work? With the shortage of priests all over the world, as well as in the US, will the priests of this group be seen as part of a religious order, answering to a superior or abbot? Will members of this group be welcomed in, say, the Archdiocese of Los Ángeles, or the dioceses associated with it?
How might this affect the split-off group that hs already returned to the fold?

quasimodo January 23, 2009 at 10:37 am

” …document “removing” the excommunication that applies to the four Lefebvrist bishops (and possibly to the late Archbishop Lefebvre” …
what does it mean to “remove” the excommunication on a man who died while excommunicated?

Matt McDonald January 23, 2009 at 10:43 am

Dean,
There is no indication that anything happening but the lifting of excommunications. That would leave the status of the SSPX juridically the same, yet, perhaps a step closer to recognition by the Holy See.
Matt

Shane January 23, 2009 at 10:47 am

Matt,
I appreciate what you’re saying, and to a large extent I agree. However, I think that the case of the SSPX is different in one important way, a way which answers both your point and that of the anonymous poster of 12:08:55. The key is that Archbishop Lefebvre acted not just without papal mandate, but against the Pope. The Pope wrote a letter specifically to the Archbishop telling him not to follow through. So that takes care of Anon’s objection. So far as what you are saying, I certainly agree that there are far more objectively serious acts of disobedience going on. However, the case of the SSPX is subjectively worse because, whereas Cardinal Mahoney, just to pick an example, may have done all sorts of things contradicting instructions issued to the universal Church or to the bishops in general, Archbishop Lefebvre had a personal communication directed specifically at him.
It would be like a kid in a class who is talking during class. It’s one thing when he is doing so after the teacher told the entire class to behave, but when that particular student is warned in particular and he still disobeys, the infraction is more serious.
In this case, it’s even more serious because it shows not merely a general dissident disregard for the authority of the pope as many bishops and priests exhibit, but a direct rejection of his authority against a personal exhortation.

Matt McDonald January 23, 2009 at 11:06 am

Shane,
perhaps the fact that the Holy Father put Abp. LeFebvre in a corner, leaving him with the choice to allow the collapse of SSPX or consecrate bishops, at the same time, not taking such action against the likes of Abp. Mahoney is the true injustice. I will not accept that what LeFebvre did was right, but we must acknowledge that he was in a desperate situation, which the Holy See has not placed the disobedient bishops in as he would have rightly done.
The analogy in your classroom scenario is that the Teacher only addresses one of the misbehaving students, who is misbehaving in less severe way than the other students. Again, not excusing the student, it is understandable that he refuses to acknowledge such an unfair instruction.
Matt

Matheus January 23, 2009 at 11:16 am

This is irrelevant to the particular post. I just wanted you to be aware of a conversation going on about you at Beggars All

To whom it may concern, the links for posts mentioned by Matt above are this and this.

Shane January 23, 2009 at 11:29 am

Matt, I can understand if you have a problem with the relative injustive of addressing Archbishop Lefebvre while failing to do so with everyone else. However, that injustice does not – as you acknowledged – change the fact that what the archbishop did was wrong. It consequently does not change the fact that the lifting of the excommunication without repentance would be problematic. In essence, it would be making up for one injustice – the attention paid to Archbishop Lefebvre while ignoring others – with another injustice – the lifting of excommunications not in spite of a failure to turn from the wrongdoing.
I would also suggest that again, the disobedience of a direct papal exhortation is a more serious problem than some of the other things other bishops do, whatever the disobedience was actually about. In other words, it is wrong for bishops to do all sorts of things, such as teaching error, abusing liturgy, etc, however for a bishop to directly disobey the Roman Pontiff because of one of the things – be it liturgical abuse, catechetical error, etc. etc. – is a more serious offense than whatever the original offense was. For example, it is sinful to commit adultery and this is known to all men via the natural law. However, once a man has received revelation and knows it to be against the commandment of God, the sin is far worse because it is done not only against the natural law, but also against the command of God.
God bless

Matt McDonald January 23, 2009 at 12:04 pm

Shane,
In essence, it would be making up for one injustice – the attention paid to Archbishop Lefebvre while ignoring others – with another injustice – the lifting of excommunications not in spite of a failure to turn from the wrongdoing.
In essence it’s true, but this is a particularly complicated situation since, there is a tacit acceptance that the Holy See may not have been acting prudently in regards to putting SSPX in a corner. The history here is that the agreement which LeFebvre and the Holy See (negotiated by Cdl. Ratzinger) included the approved consecration of a traditional bishop. All of the candidates proposed by LeFebvre were rejected (summarily some might say) leaving them with the impression that the Holy See was not acting in good faith. It seems unlikely that any bad faith was the Holy Father or Cdl. Ratzinger, but perhaps Sodano, or others in the curia.
I would also suggest that again, the disobedience of a direct papal exhortation is a more serious problem than some of the other things other bishops do, whatever the disobedience was actually about. In other words, it is wrong for bishops to do all sorts of things, such as teaching error, abusing liturgy, etc, however for a bishop to directly disobey the Roman Pontiff because of one of the things – be it liturgical abuse, catechetical error, etc. etc. – is a more serious offense than whatever the original offense was. For example, it is sinful to commit adultery and this is known to all men via the natural law. However, once a man has received revelation and knows it to be against the commandment of God, the sin is far worse because it is done not only against the natural law, but also against the command of God.
I’m sorry, I don’t believe that the act that the SSPX bishops committed is as serious or carries the same degree of culpability as teaching heresy, especially considering the circumstances around the action. Don’t you think teaching heresy, thereby leading many souls to damnation, is more serious than disobedience to the Roman Pontiff?
Matt

Leo January 23, 2009 at 12:30 pm

This Swedish news website says that in a Swedish TV investigative news programme:
SSPX bishop Richard Williamson openly denied the Holocaust, adding that he did not believe Hitler purposefully gassed Jews to death or that any gas chambers existed.
This story seems to be confirmed by The Times (London) and other generally reliable sources.
While Holocaust denial might not be grounds for excommunication, it seems to me prudential grounds for delaying any reconciliation.
I can just imagine the headline: “Ex-Hitler Youth Pope welcomes Holocaust denying bishop”

Matheus January 23, 2009 at 12:37 pm

While Holocaust denial might not be grounds for excommunication, it seems to me prudential grounds for delaying any reconciliation.

Dear Leo
Sadly, anti-semitism isn’t at all uncommon in rad-trad circles. (See, for example, the various stories regarding Mel Gibson’s father).

Leo January 23, 2009 at 12:39 pm

Sorry, I forgot to add …
Statement on this issue from SSPX website

Matt McDonald January 23, 2009 at 12:46 pm

Leo,
that’s not related to the reason for the excommunication, Bp. Fellay, the head of SSPX has disavowed these awful statements.
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_sngzl-G6AJM/SXoUX978ufI/AAAAAAAAAKw/xgH1xU87Vhg/s1600-h/Bernard+Fellay+letter+on+Williamson.jpg
There is far more at stake here than the 4 bishops, there is a great need for reconciliation for both those in SSPX and those in the broader Church (even if many on both camps don’t recognize it).

Wolfwood January 23, 2009 at 12:59 pm

Benedict XVI’s got big ambitions. He’d like to get the SSPX back, is interested in getting the Anglo-Catholics, and even hopes to bring back the Eastern Orthodox.
I, for one, hope he’s able to succeed.

Matheus January 23, 2009 at 1:00 pm

This story seems to be confirmed by The Times (London) and other generally reliable sources.

Dear Leo
Just now I took a look at the link above without reading the article, and it must be said for the sake of justice that regardless of the London Times’ reliability as a news source, the story in question was written by its religion correspondent Ruth Gledhill, whose writings about religion and especially the Catholic Church must always be taken cum grano salis. I’ve learned it from reading Jimmy’s blog itself (see here; here and here).

Leo January 23, 2009 at 1:32 pm

Matt,
I don’t think your link supports your claim that “Bp. Fellay, the head of SSPX has disavowed these awful statements.” The key sentences in your link seem to be:
“It is shameful to use an interview on religious matters to introduce secular and controversial issues with the obvious intention of misrepresenting and maligning the activities of our religious Society. Such vile attempts will not reach its goal.”
The word “vile” seem to me, to refer to the alleged attempt to malign the SSPX, not Richard Williamson’s alleged comments.
Ruth Gledhill is not the most reliable source, but a quick googling will reveal other sources, with a better track record in these matters, which confirm the worst details.
I have only started to check the primary sources of Richard Williamson in Wikipedia. At first glance his apparent belief in 9/11 conspiracy, Protocols of the Zion, etc. make him seem a liability.
I agree that anti-semitism was not the reason for the excommunication, but I think that more harm than good will be done to the Church, in communion with Pope Benedict, if a reconciliation happens now.

Tom in Columbus January 23, 2009 at 3:17 pm

I don’t think that +Williamson could have stirred up a bigger
hornets’ nest if he questioned the divinity of the 2nd Person of
the Trinity!
How odd in out day that questioning this awful event is more
contemptible than threatening actual physical harm.
Perhaps, lifting the excommunication of a dead man is analogous
to declaring a marriage null. It would mean that there was an
error in the previous pontificate and that is too much for some
to swallow

Shane January 23, 2009 at 3:43 pm

If I’m not mistaken, there is no question about the authenticity of the Bp. Williamson quote. There was a video of it on http://www.Gloria.tv last night, unless someone just got a news report about it and put a shot of the bishop for the preview image.

Inocencio January 23, 2009 at 5:18 pm

If anyone is interested this is a very easy and interesting read on the canonical suppression of the SSPX (May 6, 1975) by the local ordinary and with the approval of Pope Paul VI, suspension a divinis of Archbishop Lefebvre (July 22, 1976) by Pope Paul VI and the excommunication (July 2, 1988) by Pope John Paul II.
A CANONICAL HISTORY OF THE LEFEBVRITE SCHISM by Peter J. Vere
Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

Matheus January 23, 2009 at 5:32 pm

Dear Inocencio
Do know whether the article above was written after Pete Vere wasn’t a rad-trad anymore, or before it?
If it’s from before, I think it’s worth reading this article, which he wrote later.

RSiscoe January 23, 2009 at 6:24 pm

It will be interesting to see if it is a “lifting” of the excommunication, or a declaration of their nullity due to a defect in form. The later would be very easy to justify based on canon law. My guess, for what it is worth, is that it will be a declaration of nullity, and that the corresponding artile in L’Osservatore Ramano will be an explanation of the decision. We should know soon enough.

Inocencio January 23, 2009 at 7:07 pm

Matheus,
It is after.
Here is a link to Ed Peters, JD, JCD last post on the subject.
Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

Shane January 23, 2009 at 7:20 pm

Inocencio,
Not being an expert on these things, I wonder if you know: did the a divinis suspension of the Archbishop cancel his faculties in such a way that he was incapable of granting valid absolution? If so, did this also impact the SSPX bishops in the same way?
Or, does the simple fact that the bishops are excommunicated – or that they do not technically have an assigned jurisdiction – mean that they have not been able to confer faculties on their priests to validly absolve?

Deirdre January 23, 2009 at 7:59 pm

I do hope that we are reconciled to the SSPX, and that charity may prevail in all things. However, when talk of difficulties arises – even being forced into a corner – it is good to be mindful of the injunction of the saints and Church fathers, regarding obedience. In particular, I like one bit from rule of the Order of St. Benedict:
68. When a brother is ordered to do impossible things.
IF ANYTHING HARD OR IMPOSSIBLE is enjoined on a brother, let him receive the injunctions of him who orders him in all mildness and obedience. If he should see that the burden altogether exceeds the measure of his strength, let him patiently and at the proper time state, without show of pride, resistance, or contradiction, the reason for impossibility. *If, after his suggestion, the will of the superior remain unchanged, let the subordinate monk know that this is the best for him and, trusting in God’s help, through love of Him, let him obey.*
I do have sympathy for Abp. LeFebvre, and a great love for the extraordinary form of the Mass. But outright disobedience to one’s superior – the successor of Peter – cannot be pleasing to God provided that the obedience does not entail sin on one’s part. I certainly think disobedience can be a grave sin – a sin of pride…which…y’know…really helped Adam and Eve and the whole human race.
Don’t misunderstand – heresy is also a sin stemming from pride, and it’s bad. But the issue is not exactly whether one is worse than the other – they’re both *bad* and you *cannot* build up the Holy Mother Church up by tearing it down.
In keeping with Mr. Shane’s (Ms/etc.?) analogy: when you tell a kid to do something they may whine “why doesn’t X do it? Why ME?” The response is, usually, “because I asked YOU to do it.” A sin committed by a person in California does not mean that the person who commits the sin in France gets to say: well…HIS sins are WORSE. If it is a sin, then the sinner is culpable and the Church can decide whether to excommunicate, place under interdict, etc.

Inocencio January 23, 2009 at 10:40 pm

Shane,
Jimmy has posted on the subject here.
Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

Bill MacLean January 24, 2009 at 1:04 am

There is absolutely no question that Bp Williamson denies the holocaust. Just go to you tube and search for “Richard Williamson holocaust”. Or use this link to see the video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YHhdBzPH_zM
The Bishop explicitly confirms his infamous statement “There was not one Jew killed in the gas chambers, it was all lies, lies, lies”. He repeats in the video that he believes there were not any gas chambers in WWII Germany. Williamson believes that between 200K and 300K died in concentration camps, but that statement lumps the Jews in with lots of others who died in the camps.
Williamson also believes he Protocols of the Elders of Zion are true, believes 9/11 was an inside job, thinks the Sound of Music is morally objectionable, etc.
I hate to say this, but when you look at his string of outrageous beliefs, it seems that Williamson may well be mentally unbalanced.
Why would the church want to rehabilitate a bishop about whose grasp on reality (that’s a nice way to say “sanity”) there are very serious questions?
Thanks,
Bill

Rick January 24, 2009 at 5:47 am

I cannot believe that I am about to defend the SSPX, but here I go.
The question of reconciliation to the Church has to do with the acceptance of Church teaching on faith and morals and the recognition of the juridical authority of the Church. Fellay has, in his statements, affirmed both.
The question of Williamson denying the severity of the Holocaust has nothing to do with faith or morals. Williamson is, at least in my opinion, irrational in his beliefs. He is a loose cannon as well. But, as Fellay wrote, Williamson’s views on practical politics and history do not have anything to do with the deposit of Revelation.
Think of it this way: There are a number of people — especially older Catholics — who believe that FDR saved the country from economic destruction through his New Deal. As numerous economists and economic historians have show, this is completely false. The New Deal prolonged the Great Depression. This is an empirical FACT, not just someone’s opinion. Now, a person who denies this might be irrational, but their denial should play no role in keeping them outside the Church. I realize that the Holocaust is a much more serious matter. I do not mean to trivialize what Williamson said.
I am glad that my personal opinions on a variety of things are not examined by the Church as evidence of my worthiness to be within the Church. I would long be excommunicated!

Matheus January 24, 2009 at 6:20 am

Dear Rick
I don’t think that Bill and others here are putting Williamson’s weird beliefs as an obstacle for the censure of the excommunications. As far as I know, they, and everyone here for that matter, are faithful Catholics who, as such, subscribe to Roma locuta, causa finita est. As far as I could understand, they are pointing to the possible bad pastoral consequences of the whole issue, which if I’m not mistaken, is legitimate.

Trad January 24, 2009 at 7:15 am

IN YOUR FACE NEO-CON!

Inocencio January 24, 2009 at 7:21 am

Here it is.
Vatican decree lifts excommunication of SSPX bishops
Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

Inocencio January 24, 2009 at 7:38 am

The above link is about the document and rorate-caeli has the actual document posted.
Decree of the Congregation for Bishops
Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

The Masked Chicken January 24, 2009 at 8:12 am

I have read about this matter over the years, but I do not have as much knowledge as others in this thread.
I am always happy when an excommunication is lifted.
My question: what does this do for the canonical status of those in the pews who area committed to the SSPX? I thought that a cursory visit (attending a Mass) was not grounds for excommunication, but those committed to the cause were excommunicated for being schismatics. Am I right? Does this still hold until the SSPX is fully reconciled to Rome?
The Chicken

Dan Hunter January 24, 2009 at 8:55 am

Praise God from Whom all blessings flow!!!
The FSSPX will now add a huge shot in the arm to bringing doctrinal discussions in the Church, back to orthodoxy!
What magnificent and wonderful news!
There is much more to come out of Rome, soon about this.
I would venture to say that the excommunications are not only lifted but will be declared, by Rome, to have been null and void all along.
The Masked Chicken:
The President of the Pontifical Commision Ecclesia Dei, as well as the Holy Father, have both stated on several occasions that the SSPX are not schismatics, and one may hear Mass at their chapels without incurring sin or any canonical penalty, if done out of a love for the Traditional Latin Mass, and not out of a desire to seperate oneself from the Church.
I would venture to say that the majority of Catholics who assist at SSPX chapels do so out of a love for the TLM and not out of wanting seperation.
God bless.
Wonderful news for the Church!!!

The Masked Chicken January 24, 2009 at 9:08 am

Dear Dan Hunter,
You wrote:
The President of the Pontifical Commision Ecclesia Dei, as well as the Holy Father, have both stated on several occasions that the SSPX are not schismatics, and one may hear Mass at their chapels without incurring sin or any canonical penalty, if done out of a love for the Traditional Latin Mass, and not out of a desire to seperate oneself from the Church.
True, Dan, but I said as much in my post. My question was about people who are committed to the SSPX, not merely taking advantage of ancillary activities.
The Chicken

Dan Hunter January 24, 2009 at 9:29 am

“According to faculty expressly granted to me by the Holy Father Benedict XVI, by virtue of this decree, I remit to the Bishops Bernard Fellay, Bernard Tissier de Mallerais, Richard Williamson and Alfonso de Galarreta the censure of excommunication latae sententiae declared by this Congregation on 1 July 1988 while I declare without juridical effects, as of today’s date, the decree issued at that time.”
This is the last passage from the Official decree fro Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, Prefect for the Congregation of Bishops, that eliminates the “excommunications”.
If you read it carefully it seems to indicate, quite clearly that the “excommunications” did not have “juridical effects” at the time of their issuance, and therefor never existed and where null and void.
There was no valid excommunication!
Someones got some ‘splainin to do.

Matheus January 24, 2009 at 10:00 am

If you read it carefully it seems to indicate, quite clearly that the “excommunications” did not have “juridical effects” at the time of their issuance, and therefor never existed and where null and void.

Dear Dan
I didn’t get that impression. It seems to be just a phrasing issue. Iverting the words a little bit, it becomes

I declare without juridical effects the decree issued at that time as of today’s date

Dan Hunter January 24, 2009 at 10:20 am

Matheus,
So are you saying that as of NOW there are no juridical effects, because this statement is being made NOW?
If there are no juridical effects now, there where no jurical effects then.
God does not change.

SDG January 24, 2009 at 11:45 am

So are you saying that as of NOW there are no juridical effects, because this statement is being made NOW?

That seems to be what the statement says, yes.

If there are no juridical effects now, there where no jurical effects then.

God does not change.

God does not change, but people do, and the effects of human acts vary with those acts. When those with juridical authority exercise that authority in particular acts, their actions have juridical effects, and those effects can be changed by further juridical acts.
For instance, a law passed in 1988 and abrogated in 2008 has force of law (juridical effect) between 1988 and 2008; after 2008, it has no further juridical effect.
To say “I declare deprived of any juridical effect, from the present date, the Decree emanated at that time” is as much to say the decree has ceased to have juridical effect.

Matheus January 24, 2009 at 12:05 pm

Thanks for answering, SDG.
Since the topic changed from Canon Law to English language, I wouldn’t possibly be able to reply as well as you did…

Eowyn January 24, 2009 at 12:18 pm

Looks like the ban has officially been lifted:
http://www.cfnews.org/SSPX-Exc-Nullified.htm

Eowyn January 24, 2009 at 12:23 pm

Oops, silly me, I should’ve read all the comments before posting. Looks like I’m behind the times. Lol

Gerry Shuller January 24, 2009 at 1:10 pm

Who is this “Cardinal Mahoney”?

Hans January 24, 2009 at 2:33 pm

So what happens to SSPX priests and churches then? We have such a church just over a mile from us, so I wonder.
You can find something about him here:
http://www.catholic-hierarchy.org/bishop/bmahony.html

The Masked Chicken January 24, 2009 at 2:55 pm

Dear Hans,
I second the question (an abuse of Parlimentary Proceedure, since questions can’t be seconded, but you know what I mean).
I assume that SSPX priests have valid ordinations, but are suspended, along with every other ordained member (bishops, deacons) from celebrating or assisting, in persona Christi, with the sacraments. If so, the sacraments celebrated by SSPX are valid, but illicit.
I have no idea about the status of members who may have incurred an excommunication by being a devout adherent. I realize that people simply going for Mass are not excommunicated, although they are in spiritual danger, if they knew about the trouble between the Vatican and the SSPX and went, anyway.
Anyone want to clarify these issues?
The Chicken

Matheus January 24, 2009 at 3:23 pm

Reader Roundup, Jimmy?

Inocencio January 24, 2009 at 7:08 pm

Ed Peters recent post on the subject.
Excerpt:

A fuller explanation of the reasons for withdrawing the excommunications is apparently coming in L’Osservatore Romano so, until, we all get a chance to read those remarks, it’s probably better to refrain from further comment.

I would suggest that we follow the Holy Father’s generous example of charity and pray for him daily.
Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

Bill MacLean January 24, 2009 at 11:10 pm

Rick did a nice job of explaining my position. Who couldn’t be happy to see reconciliation between the Church and some of her wayward sons?
Regarding Bp. Williamson, I agree that his strange beliefs, although they would be laughable if not so twisted, would not be grounds for excommunication. However, Williamson clearly believes things that have many times been proven false (he thinks the “Protocols of the Elders of Zion are true, and he thinks 9/11 is an inside job), and he also clearly DISbelieves things that are proven to be true (e.g. the holocaust of the Jews in WWII).
When someone either can’t distinguish truth from fiction, or displays a preference for fiction, that is a sign of mental instability. A bishop of the Church should be in control of his passions and function rationally. Otherwise, the shepherd runs the risk of leading sheep astray, or at the least not providing leadership that will encourage the full spiritual formation of his charges.
It appears from the links that the excommunications have now been lifted. My hope is that the Pope will instruct Bp Williamson to re-examine his conscience with regard to his attitude toward the Jews, and will silence Williamson on the subject if need be. It might even be better out of pastoral concerns to severely limit Bp Williamson’s functions as a leader in the church. I also pray that Bp Williamson will submit to such discipline.
Thanks,
Bill

Hans January 25, 2009 at 12:40 pm

To expand upon my and TMC’s questions about local churches (the one here in Illinois is styled as a ‘chapel’ on their sign and as a ‘church’ on the web page, or so I recall) of the SSPX, is it reasonable to expect that they will be answerable (or similar) to the local ordinary, just as the the Dominican and Jesuit priests who said Mass in our parish are? It’s not as if they’re part of some other rite (e.g., Maronite), and my understanding is that other Roman Rite of any sort must receive faculties from the local Roman ordinary.
Anyway, it seems there is a long way to go still.
(Note on EP’s comments for those, like me, who need to look it up: contumacy — ‘stubborn refusal to obey or comply with authority, esp. a court order or summons.’)

Henry94 January 25, 2009 at 3:06 pm

Those of us who attend the SSPX feel that we are freewheeling downhill in the sun towards Rome after years of an uphill slog against the wind and rain.
Bishop Fellay has been an excellent leader in this process but it is to this wonderful Pope that we offer our deep and profound thanks. He did not flee for fear of wolves.
To those of you on this site who have admonished us, argued with us and occasionally despaired of us I would say thanks for taking the time to even consider our situation. We come not as a ghost to trouble joy but as allies in the defence of the faith.
I’m annoyed that Bishop Williamson has shot his mouth off again about matters that are beyond his competence and about which he is deeply wrong.

Matt McDonald January 25, 2009 at 6:05 pm

The remission of excommunications has no juridical effect on the status of SSPX priests or chapels, and with regard to their status as bishops no change to the bishops. Only that they can now RECEIVE the sacraments under the normal conditions, it says nothing of the illicitness of their episcopal actions. Despite what Dan Hunter says it is simply not “okee dokee” to assist at SSPX Masses, while it may not be sinful it is ill advised according to the Holy See, advice best taken seriously. The remission of excommunications does not affect this.
The authority to absolve sins in confessions (except in danger of death) requires the jurisdiction of the local ordinary. No local ordinaries have granted that jurisdiction to SSPX priests, and therefore their absolution is invalid.
Shane and Deirdre,
I think you’re failing to consider the perspective I’m providing, not that the bishop’s are entitled to have the excommunications lifted, but that the Holy See is perhaps recognizing that, while legally correct, they were not pastorally correct in issuing them, and/or the Holy See disagrees with you on the pastoral effect of lifting the excommunications at this time. Either way it’s a “fait accomplit” let’s get behind the Holy Father on it.
Matt

J.R. Stoodley January 25, 2009 at 6:10 pm

Hans,
If they became a Clerical Society of Apostolic Life of Pontifical Right like FSSP they could be answerable just to the Pope conscerning most of their operations, though they would still need to obey the local bishop regarding what they do in a specific diocese.
I believe another possibility would be to become a Personal Prelature of the Pope, which I think would allow it to continue to opperate essentially independently of the dioceses they are in.
Of course, in both cases they would be placing themselves directly under the control of the Pope at least theoretically. I wonder if they would be willing to do that, especially since even if they trust Pope Benedict who knows who will be Pope next.
I’m afraid the removal of excommunications doesn’t mean they will easily just integrate into the life of the Church. Their canonical situation may be problematic for years to come.
I have a question too, if anyone knows the answer. Does the removal of these excommunications mean the priests of SSPX are no longer suspended? And what about the issue of the validity (or lack thereof) of sacramental absolutions, marriages, and annulments performed by SSPX priests?

Shane January 25, 2009 at 10:39 pm

I have a question too, if anyone knows the answer. Does the removal of these excommunications mean the priests of SSPX are no longer suspended? And what about the issue of the validity (or lack thereof) of sacramental absolutions, marriages, and annulments performed by SSPX priests?
The bishops are still suspended. The priests still lack the faculties to absolve and to licitly celebrate the other Sacraments.
I would recommend Fr. Z’s overview: http://wdtprs.com/blog/2009/01/misconceptions-what-the-lifting-of-the-sspx-excoms-means-for-people/

Hans January 25, 2009 at 11:47 pm

Can somebody please give a clear definition of a ‘suspension a divinis‘? I think I have an idea of what it means, but I’d like to be clearer on it. Thanks.

Bill MacLean January 26, 2009 at 12:17 am

Somehow my second post disappeared. I am happy for the reconciliation, but as Matheus said, wonder about the pastoral consequences. The SSPX has a lot to offer, but their anti-semitism is a big problem that cannot be overloooked.
I hope the pope directs Williamson in particular and the SSPX leadership in general to re-examine their attitudes toward Jews.
SSPX anti-semitism is ugly and undeniable. Don’t believe me? Here are some excerpts from the SSPX’s own website website (http://sspx.org/against_the_sound_bites/mystery_of_the_jews.htm):
“Beyond its financial influence, Judaic thinking comes to dominate the cultural and educational fields. The pattern repeats: Jews get into posts of influence, and submit society to a high degree of corruption in ways of thinking and acting, which leads to a reaction of public opinion against them.
. . .
Sixth Conclusion: Under pain of sin, Catholics cannot hate the Jewish people, cannot persecute them or prevent them to live, nor disturb them in their private practice of their laws and customs. But, they must nevertheless preserve themselves from the danger they represent. Catholics are not to enter into commercial, social, nor political relations which are bound hypocritically to seek the ruin of Christendom. Jews must not live together with Christians because this is what their own Jewish laws ordain and also because their errors and material superiority have virulent consequences among other peoples. If the other peoples reject these precautions, they will invite upon themselves these consequences, namely, to serve the Jewish people to whom belongs superiority in the kingdom of the material.”
So according to the SSPX, Jews can’t live amongst Christians and we can’t have anything to do with Jews, yet the SSPX claims they are not antisemitic? SSPX appears to have a very narrow definition of antisemitism. As far as I can tell from reading their site, the only thing SSPX recognizes as anti-semitc is advocating physically harassing or killing Jews. Short of that, anything else is not antisemitic.
Assuming the SSPX eventually comes back to the Church, the hierarchy needs to deal with anti-semitism of he SSPX leadership., and if the SSPX persists in this error, it would make sense to restrict the activities of the SSPX bishops.
Thanks,
Bill

Henry94 January 27, 2009 at 11:04 am

I commend this article which I think speaks for the vast majority on the trad side concerning the Williamson intervention
http://www.remnantnewspaper.com/Archives/2009-0131-ferrara-triumph_and_tribulation.htm

Inocencio January 27, 2009 at 7:42 pm

Very interesting…
Bishop Fellay’s Apology for Holocaust Statements
Excerpt:

With great sadness we acknowledge the extent to which the violation of this mandate has damaged our mission. The statements of Bishop Williamson do not reflect in any way the position of our society. For this, I have prohibited him, until further notice, from speaking publicly on these political and historical questions
We ask for the forgiveness of the Supreme Pontiff, and of all people of good will, for the dramatic consequences of this act. As we recognize how imprudent the statements were, we affirm with sadness that they have directly affected our fraternity by discrediting our mission.

Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

Inocencio January 28, 2009 at 8:55 am

A nice overview of the situation…
The Vatican and the SSPX: why further talks are crucial by Phil Lawler
As always we must remember Pope Benedict XVI in our prayres. Saint Thomas Aquinas pray for us!
Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

yep January 29, 2009 at 11:09 am

If you attend simply for devotion of the TLM then you are fine. If you attend to with the intent of separating yourself from Rome then you’re in trouble.
BUT, confessions (among other things) are not valid because of Jurisdiction (though the Mass is valid but illicit).
Once their jurisdictional problems are solved I would go and attend.

Matheus January 30, 2009 at 1:43 pm

Now it seems that the expected counterpart from the rad-trad end started to appear.

Hans January 30, 2009 at 2:55 pm

And don’t forget the response on the other direction.

[Inappropriate handle deleted] February 1, 2009 at 1:39 pm

“The authority to absolve sins in confessions (except in danger of death) requires the jurisdiction of the local ordinary.”
This is not true on several counts.
Superiors of clerical religious orders are ordinaries and have independently of a local ordinary the faculty to absolve not only other clerics in their order but those in their order who are not clerics as well as those who may not be members of their order but nevertheless reside “day and night” within the order’s houses, including just as visitors.
Cardinals, including those who while priests are not bishops and by dispensation never become bishops, have the universal faculty from the law to absolve. The Roman Pontiff also has the universal faculty. In both cases, the faculty cannot be restricted by the local ordinary with respect to both validity and licitness.
Bishops, of any kind even those without sees, can validly absolve without restriction. They also licitly absolve without restriction unless an ordinary has denied it in particular cases. So here validity of absolution and licitness of absolution do not coincide.
http://books.google.com/books?id=X5rcnhLnRYMC&pg=PA1154&lpg=PA1154
Contrary to those who are downplaying this move, reports indicate that the Vatican had planned to stabilize SSPX juridically on Feb. 2 but that this is being delayed due to certain reactions.
Since Williamson believes not only in a conspiracy of marketing and exaggerating the Holocaust for political ends but also a conspiracy of the U.S. government with respect to 9/11 and Afghanistan as well as certain other conspiracies, it is not just to paint him as bigoted; it would seem rather that it be just to paint him as someone paranoid and prone to seeing conspiracy. This is not rare amongst fundamentalists as their theology already envisions an army of invisible demons arrayed against their well being, making their mind pliant to other similar ideas involving conpsiracies of similar invisibility and scale.

Tim J. February 1, 2009 at 2:53 pm

Not all demons are invisible. Some masquerade as angels of light… or as light bearers of other kinds.

SDG February 1, 2009 at 7:28 pm

[Inappropriate handle deleted]: I have no time tonight for proper research, but if you’re who you seem to be, you should know better than that.

To the extent that anything exists, it is good February 1, 2009 at 9:45 pm

My handle was “Satan is good”. It is Catholic doctrine that Satan is good. The fundamentalist faces a dilemma since to the extent that Satan may be said to exist is precisely the extent to which Satan may be said to be good. To deny then that Satan is good is to deny that Satan exists. If one is to do research on the canonical claims I made, one need only visit the link to the canon law commentary. One might also do research on whether Catholic doctrine holds that “Satan is good” is a true statement. I don’t think I would know better; I think rather that in all humility I know Catholic doctrine better than you as I have, for example, studied it with graduate students working on their PhDs.
All angels, irrespective of kind, are in Catholic doctrine held to be “invisible.” When in the Credo, one affirms the creation of all things seen and “unseen”, that is an allusion to the angelic realm. The original Latin can be translated as “invisible” rather than “unseen.” IIRC, some have proposed changing the English to precisely that formulation.

To the extent that anything exists, it is good February 2, 2009 at 12:53 am

This may just be a coincidence within a relatively short time (less than a half hour) after the first post above my firewall logged some suspicious and atypical inbound activity (i.e. a certain Denial of Service attack) I sincerely hope that no one associated with this website had any part, however indirect or inculpable, in that. If anything like this continues, I will have to contemplate legal action against whoever might be responsible. Perhaps an administrator of this website with misguided motives shared my IP with other individuals who in turn may have shared it with still others and that amongst these number is the person(s) responsible. I don’t know who all associated with this website might have access to my IP address but I would not think any that are named on this website would commit or encourage Denial of Service attacks. Perhaps this is merely a coincidence but this is the first time I’ve noticed a Denial of Service attack in the log and I have not during this time posted anything in any other forum, controversial (such as “Satan is good”) or otherwise. The only other website I recall visiting during this time was the forums at catholic.com. Though I have read some forum members there countenance cyberwarfare against websites associated with abortion rights, I would assume that their militancy is not shared by those there who might have access to my IP and I would assume that this blog is truly independent of catholic.com as it claims to be — this latter assumption would mean that no one there other than those already associated with this blog would even know that the IP that visited catholic.com had posted something such as “Satan is good” on this blog. Whoever is responsible, should you read this, please refrain from such acts in the future.

SDG February 2, 2009 at 2:24 am

My handle was “Satan is good”. It is Catholic doctrine that Satan is good.

The fact that a prima facie outrageous and offensive statement can be subject to a legitimate interpretation doesn’t change the fact that it is prima facie outrageous and offensive. One could make a semantic defense for the assertion “Jesus is not God” actually having an orthodox sense within Catholic teaching, but it remains prima facie heretical from a Catholic viewpoint.
I could run down the semantic reasons why the prima facie meaning of “Satan is good” is inimical to Catholic sensibilities, but I am damn tired of running down rabbit holes with you. Rule 21 states: “Commenters in the combox are to use either their real name or a (non-offensive, non-spiteful) handle that distinguishes them from others when posting comments.” As near as I can tell, your defense for your last handle amounts to “I don’t know the difference between what is offensive and what isn’t.” Get a clue, or get lost, permanently.
Oh, and stop using the controverted phrase in passing; I don’t want to read it again, even once. Do not mount any further theological defense of it; it is not a topic for this thread or any other at this time.
Finally, I have no words to express the contempt I feel for your insinuations about whatever issues you may be having. Do me a favor and please do not feel obliged to share your moral concerns for the effects of my contempt. My patience with you is at an end if it wasn’t already a long time ago.

Tim J. February 2, 2009 at 4:55 am

“It is Catholic doctrine that Satan is good”
It is Catholic doctrine that *existence* is good. What one does with one’s existence is another subject altogether.
Satan uses what existence, power and other God-given goods he mat still possess for evil purposes, therefore Satan is evil, QED.

Tim J. February 2, 2009 at 6:03 am

“…he mat still possess…”
That’s “may” still possess.

Brian Walden February 2, 2009 at 2:25 pm

“Superiors of clerical religious orders are ordinaries and have independently of a local ordinary the faculty to absolve not only other clerics in their order but those in their order who are not clerics as well as those who may not be members of their order but nevertheless reside “day and night” within the order’s houses, including just as visitors.”
That’s great but the SSPX isn’t a religious order, it’s a priestly fraternity.

gurnygob February 3, 2009 at 12:56 am

Re: There is absolutely no question that Bp Williamson denies the holocaust.
Some of you tend to think that because this Bishop has denied the Holocaust that he is mad or something. Do any of you know why he denies the holocaust. You all need to go look it up. you will discover that over the years, this holocaust thing has gotten smaller and smaller in numbers. Add to that the new information and investigations going on. it seems to me that the Bishop may not be as mad as some of think he is. You watch to much news on TV and expect to find the truth. Also, as for 9/11 any body with a bit wit can see that 9/11 did not happen without the government of the great USA knowing about it. Its no use sticking your head in the sand and saying they wouldn’t do it, because they would. leave the bishop to the Pope and the Vatican and pray that ex pres Bush and his side kicks all repent before they die, for they will have some explaining to do about 9/11. Maybe you all think this financial crisis is something that just happened too.
What about the crisis within our own dear Church. Did that just happen as well without the Vatican knowing something. These bishops and Priests left the church because they seen that certain elements within the Church during the time of V11 were intent on bringing the faith to its knees. All one has to ask ones-self is why the 3rd secret of Fatima was not revealed in 1960. I have often wondering too, that had this message/secret been released in 1960 when it was supposed to, it may have prevented V11 from going ahead or at least, stopped the liberals from ripping the faith and dogma of the Church to bits. Maybe that’s why it never seen the light of day all those years ago. Certain elements within the Church had it blocked because it warned, more or less, about the dangers of watering down the faith/teachings. Fast forward to the year 2000 when they did release it or some portion of it, and you can see why they were fearful of releasing the whole truth. (Which can be plainly seen today) A crisis in the faith, because the people are not taught anymore about the truth and sin. Changing the scriptures, gay priests and the scandal in recent years and God only knows what else is still to come.
There are people in high places within the Church and throughout the Church in general, who will not stop until they destroy Her, which of course they can’t, but they will kill the faith of many before they are finished. They are the progressives who try to change Holy scripture and tell us lies.
We need to pray that they repent, never mind these bishops of the SSXP.
I would like to point out that I am for V2 but not the way it was used by those cardinals,bishops and priests who brought us to the sorry mess we are in to day. Things will get much worse before they get better. mark my words. Watch and you will see things happen you never thought possible.
Yours in Jesus and Mary.

bill912 February 3, 2009 at 3:54 am

I’m so glad I drink beer and not Kool-aid.

goodness inheres in Satan February 3, 2009 at 5:04 am

Catholic doctrine holds that every creature to the extent that it has being, is good. Satan to the extent that it has being, is good. Satan doesn’t merely possess good gifts from God as Tim rightly pointed out; Satan is in his very being good, i.e. ontologically good. (Tim, to say that Satan is good doesn’t mean that one is saying that Satan is not evil anymore than to say that a murderer is good doesn’t mean that one is saying that a murderer is not evil; I hope you have not fallen victim to the heresy of dualism; I recall you fell victim to the Nestorian heresy and belittled my doctrinal understanding until a “bill” corrected you; so perhaps a little humility is in order and your use of a “Q.E.D.” in the context of supposedly contradicting anything I said is unwise)
It is not heresy to say that Satan is good. Rather it is heresy to deny that Satan is good. To deny that Satan is good is to engage perhaps in some heretical dualism where one envisions Satan to be pure evil or to some other heretical dualism where reality other than good reality can obtain (exist).
Within the constraints of radio, Jimmy Akin on one occasion did a nice job of explaining all this.
BTW, in Catholic philosophical doctrine, to the extent that anything has being, it is good and also is beautiful. Thus, to the extent that Satan has being, it is not only good, but also beautiful. You seem willing SDG to accept that Satan is good in some sense, but you seem not to realize that that sense is a crucial ontological sense; and this sense far from being some odd semantical interpretation is the normative interpretation that “good” and “goodness” receives in theology. I don’t think you are aware of the fact that in the field of theology, the goodness of Satan is something that is spoken about. If you had the same willingness which I suspect you do not to accept the fact that Satan is beautiful, then that would indicate perhaps that you do have an inkling on the philosophical and doctrinal truths involved here. If otherwise, then I would urge you to (1) do some research on the nature of evil (2) do some research on dualism as applied to Satan and (3) do some research on the “transcendentals”, particularly the transcendentals of being, goodness and beauty. According to St. Thomas Aquinas, per the transcendentals, Satan is beautiful (Aquinas thought the transcendental of beauty to be merely the notional summation of goodness and truth, however)
SDG, in all frankness, you are just factually wrong here. Now if this were a question of “God loves Satan”, you may have a point as regards a legitimate sense and an illegitimate sense since God in a sense loves Satan and in a sense does not. But as to whether goodness inheres in Satan (since goodness is objective, that’s what “Satan is good” means just as “Satan is beautiful” means that beauty inheres in Satan as beauty like goodness is also objective), there’s no “sense” in which it is true or “sense” in which it is false. Either goodness inheres in Satan or it is not the case that goodness inheres in Satan.
It is sad and tragic that Catholic catechetics is in such a poor state, especially in these times, that basic truths of philosophy and theology are unknown to the vast majority of Catholics. When even such basic truths are unknown, how then can the spiritual riches of such Thomistic teachings such as the existence of conflict amongst even unfallen angels be digested and in Scott Hahn’s words “feasted” upon? Unfortunately, there is no one in contemporary times who is AFAIK a bishop of the Catholic Church and competent in contemporary analytic philosophy. It was surprising to me that an SSPX bishop would criticize modern philosophy for being imprecise, apparently in total ignorance of contemporary analytic philosophy. Unfortunately today unlike earlier medieval times, the brightest minds are not attracted to monasteries of learning and abbeys of privilege, as academic curiousity can be satifised outside the church and in other endeavors often more lucrative. On one occasion a certain cleric told me that he thought modern logic had contributed nothing to what the medievals developed in logic! And he is a seminary professor!
Let us pray not only that the SSPX be swiftly regularized but that the spirit might inspire them to internally liberalize and not hearken to an Orthodox-esque stagnation where they do not countence any further theological evolution following the 1960’s. Remember Aquinas was quite the revolution and yet now the present pontiff’s Platonism is quite the hot button as before his ascension many would have more openly derided Platonist theology.
If this new handle “goodness inheres in Satan” is also unacceptable, so be it. You may call it “prima facie” heresy, but I tell you that any learned person will tell you that its negation is what is heresy. If you remain unconvinced then would you accept “every creature w/out exception is beautiful” as a handle?
btw I thought it rather misleading for you to term my handle “inappropriate” w/out saying what it was, labelling it “inappropriate” without revealing what it was might have suggested to some that it involved vulgar language or some such. I am sure that was not your intention since you seem to always have noble intentions. Now you have labelled that handle — or said as much — “heretical” … it is really unfair for you to do so and then not give me an opportunity to respond. I assume that was carelessness on your part so I have responded here. As I have said wrt to both that handle and this one, it is not heretical in any “prima facie” meaning that would be apparent in theology or philosophy; in fact its negation is what is heretical — and there’s no “sense” here .. either goodness inheres in Satan or it is not the case that goodness inheres in Satan. I hope you did not engage in some kind of flustering in the face of your error being pointed out to you, as Anselm is alleged by some to have done in response to Gaunilo. Either you are much more ignorant of theology and philosophy and doctrine than I even thought or you are being stubborn. I am aware that when others have attempted to fraternally point out similar possibilities, you proceeded to disinvite them or some such … even though you do not hestitate to do so with respect to them (and wrt to me you have for example suggested among other things that I was being stubborn, though I don’t recall if you used that specific word) … so feel free to disinvite me for suggesting that you might be what you suggested previously I was. Or feel free to disinvite me for a totally unrelated reason. Or since this is yours to do as you please, feel free to disinvite me as you had previously suggested you might simply for being annoying. You stated in a post that I did not flagrantly violate the rules (indeed besides this affair I recall exactly two instances in which anyone of authority suggested I had violated a rule — so your statement that I did not do so “promiscuously” seems to be an understatement) but that since I was annoying you weren’t sure what to do with me. I got the impression frankly that you wanted to disinvite me but weren’t sure how to do so while paying homage to the rules (which are so long that I think I eventually bothered to read them on one occasion but I can hardly recall any of them). Well, you need not have any pretense of impartiality or neutrality. You can choose to operate your blog as you see fit. AFAIK, you could disinvite someone merely for being annoying.
I find it odd that “Satan is good” which is theologically wholesome is so objectionable when “love of Satan” was for some reason okey dokey. I had posted previously under a handle that abbreviated “love of Satan” into an acronym and in a post I mentioned this abbreviation and yet no one objected when I continued to post under that acronym. “love of Satan” is theological problematic. In the case of “Satan is good” it is it’s negation that is not only theological problematic, but downright heretical (at least in the loose sense of heresy that some seem to be using above)
I am sorry that this post is too long. I don’t have time at the moment to revise it and edit it. Please bear with it. Note my shorter posts above.

goodness inheres in Satan February 3, 2009 at 5:27 am

let me add that there is no “prima facie” meaning of “Satan is good” or “goodness inheres in Satan” which contradicts Catholic doctrine; rather the negation of those sentences are what contradict Catholic doctrine. But there is certainly a revulsion to hearing of the fact that Satan is good or that goodness inheres in Satan. The source of this revulsion is found in ignorance, not in some supposed “prima facie” meaning of these statements which is untrue. The ignorance lies in the vast majority of rank and file Catholics being unaware of well, the fact that goodness inheres in Satan, that beauty inheres in Satan and that if one is to accept Catholic philosophy, every trascendental inheres in Satan. There is this belief that there is nothing in Satan or of Satan that is to be recognized as good. But one can recognize the goodness that is in Satan. That is not inimical to Catholic doctrine as SDG seems to have supposed. I am afraid that what I perceive SDG to be expressing (though it is unclear due to his vague language and lack of expression) is what is unfortunately inimical to Catholic doctrine and authentic spirituality.
There are a lot of misconceptions about doctrine. For ex. some Catholics labor under the belief that all those in hell have no admirable affections. While that may be true, it is not contrary at least to official doctrine that those in hell might have authentic human affection for, for ex., relatives. Neither is it demanded by official doctrine that Satan’s will is wholly evil. In fact traditionally that would be an impossibility. For Satan’s intellect must apprehend natural goods (if it apprehended no natural goods at all then it would cease to function at all) and inasmuch as the intellect apprehended these natural goods, the will would be drawn to them. But this goes against the conception of popular culture of Satan in movies and the like. This is why as I have lamented, we need to pray for greater doctrinal orthodoxy, a foundation, from which more adventurous theological excursions some might favor (ex. in exploring the works of Protestants such as NT Wright) can be entered into.
Seminarians are required to complete (theoretically) the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree in philosophy before excursing to the realm of theology. There’s a reason for that.

Satan is a Big, Fat Jerk February 3, 2009 at 6:14 am

“I recall you fell victim to the Nestorian heresy”
I fell victim only to getting caught up in your word games and mispeaking in my haste. I recognized this immediately, and so was quick to acknowledge when bill912 corrected me.
I was familiar with Church teaching on the Hypostatic Union both before and after.
Poor misunderstood Satan… he got kicked to the celestial curb, and all the time he was just trying to help, trying to broaden God’s mind a little bit.
Satan sez, “Can’t we all just get along”?

bill912 February 3, 2009 at 6:46 am

I think it’s time to ban the naughty child.
(Actually, I think it’s long past that time, but SDG has a much greater amount of the virtue of Patience than I do.)

bill912 February 3, 2009 at 7:00 am

I’d say that he’s putting his ignorance on display, but, given his new handles, I have to conclude that he’s just following his father’s example by lying.

Inocencio February 3, 2009 at 7:03 am

Charel Weng,
Hmmm…you defend prostitution, pornography, abortion and now Satan, all while sounding like a 14 year-old…very telling and yawn…
You remain in my prayers.
Lord, Have mercy on both are souls.
Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

SDG February 3, 2009 at 7:57 am

Since my previous attempts to cap the issue were evidently insufficient, here is my last-ditch effort:
BANDYING ABOUT THE NAME/TERM/SUBJECT OF SATAN IS TO CEASE AND DESIST IMMEDIATELY.
Do not use it in sigs. Period. Do not rabbit-trail on Catholic theological teaching on Satan in comboxes about other subjects. Do not toss in the word in reference to previous discussion on the subject. Do not gratuitously allude to previous discussion, or perpetuate the topic by second-guessing or analyzing this cease and desist notice. CEASE AND DESIST MEANS JUST THAT.
While I have not yet discussed this with Jimmy, I am confident that he will back me up completely. In addition, C (as our problem child of a thousand names will henceforth be named by me, unless he adopts a stable moniker), I am confident that Jimmy and I will take similar views both of the the extent to which your line of thought is compatible with Catholic thought, and the extent to which you are being subversive and perverse.
Finally, C, while I will, once again, not disinvite you from blog participation, what I will do is ask Jimmy, when he has the time, to have a look at some of your comments. I have not asked and will not ask him to ban you — but I will ask you, here and now, to commit yourself to respect whatever judgment he should make, and to stop posting here once and for all, under any identity, if Jimmy asks you to do so.
Since this is his blog, you should be willing to do so in any case. In any case, I credit you with the integrity to keep your word once given. Will you commit yourself to abide by Jimmy’s judgment in this regard?

[inappropriate handle deleted] February 3, 2009 at 8:41 am

Good idea, Tim J.

SDG February 3, 2009 at 8:57 am

Sorry to the last respondent, but I need to draw a line here. “Do not use it in sigs, period” means just that. Please don’t take it personally.

Matheus February 3, 2009 at 9:37 am

OK, fine and dandy. I’ve been avoiding this thread like the plague thus far, but, reading Tim J.’s comment above I couldn’t resist fighting the childish satanist propaganda with a little bit of childish anti-satanist propaganda. I thought your order was about the former type, but it must be respected anyway.

In every creature whatsoever goodness and beauty inhere February 3, 2009 at 9:24 pm

I hope this handle meets the provisional criterion you have laid out. Thanks for your compliment and I don’t see a need to “commit” myself; it is rather a matter of pre-existing obligation whether I “commit” to it or not is of no consequence. I strive to fulfill all my moral duties and have no reason to doubt as you have yourself said that you have no reason to doubt that I would fulfill this one. It is likewise IMO a matter of pre-existing obligation that should you discover that it be possible that some of your comments on this subject were potentially misleading to some of your readers and that what you thought to be true was not quite true, that you would have the humility and justice — not for my own sake, but for the sake of your readers, to duly inform them of that state of affairs.
[draconian content restrictions enforced]
Allow me also to apologize for any misinterpreation you may have given to remarks I made about certain Denial of Service attacks. I had not named you and nor did I think I said anything derogatory of anyone associated with this blog. Regardless, it may have been imprudent of me to say those things and so I am sorry for what might have been imprudent in them. As you can imagine, a victim of such Denial of Service attacks may in that moment write atypically and not in a more measured fashion or remaining in reticence.
I believe this post conforms with what you intended to express to me above. The shouting and passion which evidently underlied made it a little difficult to comprehend. I apologize also if I have misapprehended your intention there. You can be assured that nothing in this post is intended to regurgitate anything or to perpetuate anything. Certain portions are however intended to encapsulate what has transpired and certain explanations, that it might be considered in the looming judgment you apparently have decided to ask Mr Akin to make. I am sure that your direction was not intended to prevent me from presenting my case in this measured fashion.
Sincerely,
Iecwgabi

In every creature whatsoever goodness and beauty inhere February 3, 2009 at 9:36 pm

P.S., Tim J referenced his falling victim to the Nestorian heresy above and explained it as merely some kind of “word game” that I had engaged in with him. That is far from the truth. The post he refers to was not even addressed to him. In that post I had expressed the fact that as traditionally formulated Christ is one divine person and not a human person. Tim replied to this by suggesting that I need to take Catechism 101 or something along those lines. Would Tim have “immediately recongized the error” had I corrected him? I don’t think so. The same kind of thing is going on here IMO. And it is not some sort of “word game.” Since I was not IIRC even addressing Tim J in that post it is hard to even comprehend how I would be engaging in a “word game.” I would ask that rather than relying on the word of Tim J, even if he be a co-blogger here, that this it was a word game I had engaged in, that anyone who might be concerned of this read the original posts there. It’s not clear whether SDG in saying he will ask Mr Akin to review some of my posts is referring to posts in this thread or to also other posts. I certainly would hope that there would be no kind of cherry picking at work. BTW, the same formulation that Jesus is not a human person but is rather is one divine person — that very formulation that Jesus “is not a human person” — verbatim — was used by one of the (relatively speaking at least) more learned priests in the Catholic hiearchy that I was aquainted with. He is a seminary professor. He has also had occasion to give homilies at parishes and on one of those occasions I happened to be present and he said precisely those words during the homily. He has also expounded upon it in some of his instruction, instruction that I had occasion to participate in. So this is not some “word game.” This is, well, if I might use the cavalier phraseology of Tim J, theology or if you prefer, Christology 101.

In every creature whatsoever goodness and beauty inhere February 3, 2009 at 10:34 pm

Whether I end up being disinvited or not, I would enjoy reading SDG or when he might be able, Jimmy Akin’s thoughts on the big news of the day regarding a certain order (Legionaries of Christ) Specifically, I am in the dark as to how an order could have an authentic charism if its founder is admitted to be so (given for example magisterial direction that religious orders seek to emulate their founder or the founder’s charism or life or teaching). And if there cannot be properly speaking an authentic charism, I am confused as to how it would be moral to continue to recognize the order juridically in the canonical framework it exists under.
This relates to the SSPX situation as well. Assuming that for different reasons the SSPX does not have an authentic charism as above, then what kinds of juridical structures would be legitimate to graft them in under?

In every creature whatsoever goodness and beauty inhere February 4, 2009 at 1:02 am

It appears Ed Peters, JD, JCD, has raised some of the same concerns I have raised. Apparently these are serious concerns for which Ed Peters who IIRC beside his legal degrees (and a good canonical degree for those who don’t know would also include some theological training) also has degrees in some other field(s) as well, expresses lack of knowledge on. Given that, I would doubt that any one else would know either, but I would still enjoy reading the thoughts as I mentioned already.
http://www.canonlaw.info/2009/02/maciel-meltdown-and-future-of-legion.html
I believe SDG works for in some fashion the NC Register. Though as Ed Peters notes above the editor of the Legion-owned Register initially apologized (and according to Ed Peters is the sole person to do so) on Amy Welborn’s blog in the comments (a later comment by him apparently backtracked somewhat and I’m unsure what occasioned it), I would hope that the editor of the NC Register, perhaps with SDG’s encouragement, could in a timely fashion make a more public apology, perhaps in the pages of the NC Register’s print edition as well as on the facing page of the online site. But kudos to him for what he did do.
Like Zippy Catholic I have but passing interest in this SSPX affair (FWIW, one of Zippy’s posts on his blog on the matter of Williamson and abortion is quite provocative, i.e. thought provoking). So perhaps the SSPX is not the kind of religious community for which a charism would even take hold. (I don’t mean to equate the disputed moral failings of the founder of the SSPX with the now (partially) acknowledged moral failings of the founder of the Legionaries of Christ; but unless my understanding of the nature of the SSPX is just flat out wrong and no charism would pertain to them as after a founder, a parallel consideration is of consequence here)
Both the Legionaries of Christ affair and the confusion around Benedict, the reportage by the Associated Press as it relates to Benedict’s youth and Williamson have sown seeds of doubt for me. Astonishingly, a majority on certain forums seem to be entertaining or even holding to the notion of conspiracies even more bizarre than the ones Williamson envisions wrt to Jews, the Holocaust, Israel, 9/11, the U.S. Government, and Afghanistan, etc. These Catholics seem to with tragic irony succumbing to the conspiracy theory that there was a conspiracy involving lesbians and the Swedish media as well as a Vatican official opposed to the SSPX reconciliation process to time the airing of the Williamson interview (as well as to ask certain questions during the interview) to coincide with a time past the point of no return (when the signed remittance was already delivered) and yet calculated to inflict maximum damage on the pope and his iniative. That is just nuts. It is nuts that some prominent Catholics seem to be promoting this as a possibility and it is nuts that the majority of commenters seem to be accepting it as a possibility or likelihood (in one contour or another). This underscores my earlier point — which I will make without referencing any forbidden subjects — about certain world views or fundamentalisms making one prone to theories of conspiracy.
It is also tragic that while, rightly, anti-Jewish and anti-Semitic bigotry is (for the most part including by Catholics) denounced, that sadly some whom I would presume denounce the anti-Semitic/Jewish conspiracy of media, marketing, and political agenda proposed by Williamson as regards the Shoah and Israel, entertain or even endorse conspiracies that are seemingly anti-lesbian in nature or tone … and as implausible as any conspiracy believed by Williamson. Seriously, a Vatican official conspiring with lesbians and the Swedish media? And supposedly the revelation of Akita backs this up as it references “cardinals opposing cardinals” … one hopes the reportage of a forthcoming document of restriction on matters of special revelation will prove accurate. What is most disturbing is that according to the reportage (in Italian press) — see the blog referenced in the OP for the story — it is persons in the Vatican itself who subscribe to this crazy lesbian-Vatican official-Scandinavian media conspiracy against the pope. This sounds too much like someone has been taking TV shows like 24 and books/movies like the Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons, way too seriously.

SDG February 4, 2009 at 4:54 am

C: I have discussed events in this thread with Jimmy. He agrees with me on all counts.
Jimmy has also issued an authentic interpretation of the handle rule.
In Da Rulz Jimmy merely says that commenters are to use a handle “that distinguishes them from others when posting comments.”
In the past, dealing with a poster of many handles most best known (by others) as Gnostic Troll (B’Art, Bert, Ernie, etc.) whose early strategems included posting repeatedly in the same combox under different handles so as to create a kind of echo chamber effect in which it appeared that his views were widely shared, I proposed a minimal anti-echo-chamber interpretation of the rule: Commenters should refrain from multiplying handles in the same combox.
Now, in response to different social pressures, without any prompting from me, Jimmy has clarified that regular commenters should pick a handle and stick with it for the long haul. This is not to say that one can never get sick of one’s handle and change it, but it ought to be a stable identifier measured in, say, years rather than weeks or brief months. (Fleeting departures and variations for comic effect and the like are expressly permitted.)
This policy is intended to enhance the social dynamics of the combox by enabling regulars to easily recognize other regulars, with the shared social history that this implies, and to encourage commenters to take long-term responsibility for their conduct.
FWIW, I am not currently in a position to comment on the Fr. Maciel revelations, the way it has been handled or anything else relating to the LC. Suffice to say I am generally against secrecy, silence, stonewalling, happy talk, and other forms of communication abuse. From this litany you might conclude, correctly, that I pretty much agree with the argument Russell Shaw has set forth in Nothing to Hide.

Tim J. February 4, 2009 at 6:25 am

“Tim replied to this by suggesting that I need to take Catechism 101 or something along those lines”
Really? Can you give me the quote? I don’t remember saying that.

Johannim February 4, 2009 at 7:45 am

WHEN WILL THE “MAINSTREAM” NOVUS ORDO CATHOLICS WAKE UP. THE SOCIETY OF ST. PIUS THE TENTH WAS N-E-V-E-R SEDEVACANTIST, HAVE ALWAYS RECOGNISED EVERY POPE BEFORE AND AFTER VATICAN 2 AND HAVE EXPELLED FROM THEIR SOCIETY ANYONE EXPRESSING SEDEVACANTIST OPINIONS AN EXAMPLE BEING THE EXPELLED EX-SSPX PRIESTS WHO WENT ON TO FORM THE SOCIETY OF ST. PIUS 5TH (A SMALL GROUP THAT RECOGNISES NO POST VATICAN 2 PONTIFF.)GUESS THOSE “CATHOLIC” ADVOCATES FOR ABORTION & PRIESTESSES SIMILIAR TO THE HERETICAL ANGLICAN/EPISCOPAL SECT WILL HAVE TO FIND ANOTHER WHIPPING BOY, MAYBE THEY CAN GO AFTER OPUS DEI AGAIN AS THE LIBERAL LEFTS ARE SO FOND OF DOING. MAKES ME WONDER HOW PRIESTS LIKE MAHONEY (THE RAINBOW PRELATE) AND BROWN IN CALIFORNIA ARE GOING TO DEAL WITH FULLY RECOGNISED O-R-T-H-O-D-O-X LATIN RITE CATHOLIC PRIESTS, PRELATES AND RELIGIOUS UP THEIR NOSE IN THEIR DIOCESE AND NOT UNDER THEIR LEFTIST CONTROL-IT’S WAIT AND SEE.

Johannim February 4, 2009 at 7:48 am

WHEN WILL THE “MAINSTREAM” NOVUS ORDO CATHOLICS WAKE UP. THE SOCIETY OF ST. PIUS THE TENTH WAS N-E-V-E-R SEDEVACANTIST, HAVE ALWAYS RECOGNISED EVERY POPE BEFORE AND AFTER VATICAN 2 AND HAVE EXPELLED FROM THEIR SOCIETY ANYONE EXPRESSING SEDEVACANTIST OPINIONS AN EXAMPLE BEING THE EXPELLED EX-SSPX PRIESTS WHO WENT ON TO FORM THE SOCIETY OF ST. PIUS 5TH (A SMALL GROUP THAT RECOGNISES NO POST VATICAN 2 PONTIFF.)GUESS THOSE “CATHOLIC” ADVOCATES FOR ABORTION & PRIESTESSES SIMILIAR TO THE HERETICAL ANGLICAN/EPISCOPAL SECT WILL HAVE TO FIND ANOTHER WHIPPING BOY, MAYBE THEY CAN GO AFTER OPUS DEI AGAIN AS THE LIBERAL LEFTS ARE SO FOND OF DOING. MAKES ME WONDER HOW PRIESTS LIKE MAHONEY (THE RAINBOW PRELATE) AND BROWN IN CALIFORNIA ARE GOING TO DEAL WITH FULLY RECOGNISED O-R-T-H-O-D-O-X LATIN RITE CATHOLIC PRIESTS, PRELATES AND RELIGIOUS UP THEIR NOSE IN THEIR DIOCESE AND NOT UNDER THEIR LEFTIST CONTROL-IT’S WAIT AND SEE.

bill912 February 4, 2009 at 7:51 am

There’s no need to shout.

In every creature whatsoever goodness and beauty inhere February 4, 2009 at 8:22 am

It was not clear from your post whether by “agreeing with you on all counts” included a disinivitation from this blog since besides that statement you made no other indication as to whether I had been disinivited from the blog. If what you seem to portray is accurate as regards the other matter, I am shocked that Jimmy Akin would ascribe to such philosophical and theological heterodoxy as well as be ignorant of these matters.
Since this policy has just been unveiled and I would presume would not be applied retroactively (btw, besides myself there have been to my knowledge a few other individuals, including other Catholics and at least one present regular, who would be in violation of this policy as you have described it in terms of name changes by regulars as frequent as in some cases “brief months” or “weeks”), I would think it only fair that I be permitted to think of what I might like to be permanent as a handle for more than “brief months.” Of course this may be moot if I have been disinvited. But if I have not and I post here again I will have thought of it by then.
BTW, I’ve noticed that some of the posts on this blog have been made by certain individuals using the same handle as I had used. I came to realize this because a certain individual for some dug up a very old thread and I noticed the thread had some posts using the same handle that I had used but yet were not made by me. I came to the reasonable conclusion that in all likelihood this individual had done a search of posts made with that handle (this individual seems to be somewhat obssessed with me and often reiterates the same thing in multiple threads, with distortions and falsehoods) and thereby came across that thread. Since that search with that handle would have yielded a great many results, I wonder …
SDG, I sincerely hope that your last paragraph which was in response to me and prefaced with “FWIW” was truly something you presented as something that might be of worth to me and was not laced with an allusory swipe against my character (IMO, ironically, if my hope be false, then your own last paragraph would be a form of “communication abuse” as I have previously explained in response to something previous with Tim J belatedly in a later thread mentioning he is not sure if he agrees with my opinion and was considering getting back to me about what his opinion might be) After all a man of honesty that others would know you to be would not present swipes in a manner allusory so such that it might escape my attention or otherwise prevent me from responding to it.
I make the friendly suggestion that when you post a movie review here that you make mention of your amazon affiliate status; the reason is that there can be an appearance of a conflict of interest insofar as an amazon affiliate might be inclined to or tempted to review a movie more favorably to encourage affiliate sales.
This matter in particular (the SSPX matter was incremental, this tips it over the edge) is causing serious doubt in me. Since the church’s infallibility extends to certain legislative acts, at least in the traditional understanding, when those acts are of universal legislation, and since the LC were erected as an institute of Pontifical Rite, I have the fear that this may mean it would fall under the scope of infallibility in some respect.
With some German bishops being openly critical of Papa Ratzinger’s latest move and with Papa Ratzinger promoting a priest to be bishop who opines that Hurricane Katrina was God’s punishment of homosexuals and that a tsunami was punishment of lavish Western tourists, I am afraid that the firestorm around the Pope is just beginning. We have now even the German Chancellor publically rebuking the Pope and rightly so.
Remember this was a pope that had the humility to submit his encyclical Deus et caritas to the CDF for its doctrinal review to be assured that it be orthodox. The pope would I am sure receive warmly with humility the rebukes and kind exhortations of the German Chancellor and U.S. dignitaries just as he would from those German bishops who have openly critizied him on this SSPX affair and just as President Obama (may God bless his presidency that he might in history one day be known as the first “the Great” president) has always been gracious to his clerical critics. So let us not forget also to pray for those of the temporal authority that the spirit might give them the courage to speak as is not only their right but their duty to make known their concerns to the still geopolitically relevant pope.
In terms of those amongst them who might be Catholics (as happened in the case of the numerous U.S. dignitaries which not that this matters included pro-life Catholics), one should not criticize their actions as arrogant since canon law itself recognizes that the laity and especially laity of high dignity have the right or even duty to make known even to the Holy See their concerns and criticisms.
The reconciliation of a paranoid anti-Jewish/anti-U.S. bishop Williamson coupled with a promotion of a Pat Robertson-esque anti-homosexual/anti-Western priest to be bishop of a see of some prominence is as this article refers to as the opinion of the friend of Papa Ratzinger something that runs the serious risk of alienating millions of Catholics from Papa Ratzinger.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/feb/02/pope-controversial-austrian-bishop
I fear that he may come to be for all these reasons and others soon come to resemble in popularity not only without but within the ekklesia, that of President Bush. I am happy to learn that under Bush who endorsed as a policy of the executive the theory of the unitiary executive power, the Justice Department did not hesitate to investigate the L.A. archdiocese and remained largely neutral in a lawsuit seeking class certification that a federal appeals court has allowed to proceed whose sole defendant is the Holy See. May President Obama also not hesitate to confront the ecclesial authority inclusive of the Holy See and inclusive of this matter of the SSPX, anti-Semitism, homophobia, unhealthy paranoia and conspiracy theory, etc. And in our as Christians eagerness to combat what the Vatican has suggested be termed Christophobia let us not forget to rid our own selves and our own house of homophobia and other forms of evil, be it of irrationality or bigotry.
The Pope is not only ecclessialy perched, but is a citizen of the world and other citizens of the world like President Obama and the German Chancellor who is Chancellor for all the German people including the Pope, must all remind the pope and others of ecclesial significance that their words are not words onto a social island but that their words have consequences. This is not a call for restricting liberty of speech but a call that all persons might call on the pope to always be temperate when he might preach. And far from being as one prominent Catholic priest has suggested an odd act of yielding to public pressure, the Pope’s expression of solidarity with the Jewish people recently was, yes, in response to public concern — but that as it as it should be. Do we want for a leader someone who as some have (justly or unjustly) critized for ex. the previous President of the U.S. or Sony to be oblivious to public input in the direction of policy? It is heartening that President Obama promised during the campaign that for non-emergency bills of significance (I disagree with politifact that this is Obama’s first broken promise) that there will be a period of about a week where the bill will be posted on a website for comment by the ordinary public before the President signs it. In this respect Papa Ratzinger is in the mould of President Obama in that he like Obama submitted for comment and review Deus caritas est to the CDF before signing and promulgating it.
On the plus side, this SSPX and other affairs has led some respected commentators to believe that the next pontiff will surely be one of more liberal character since the cardinals will not want to elect another in this present mold. May God inspire the church to humbly serve the world just as God would serve the world per tradition and scripture.

Inocencio February 4, 2009 at 8:23 am

Charel Weng,
Why not start your own blog…oh never mind.
Take care and God bless,
Inocencio
J+M+J

Tim Jones February 4, 2009 at 8:46 am

I just KNOW he/she/it is trying to communicate something… I can sense it… it’s in there somewhere

SDG February 4, 2009 at 9:14 am

C:
You are not disinvited. I would have been clear about that. You might have credited me with that, but never mind — I clarify anyway. (OTOH, I see you have not clarified your willingness to honorably abide by any such disinvitation from Jimmy, as I asked you to.)
Obviously policy clarifications cannot be retroactive. Can’t imagine why you find it necessary to clarify what most people would regard as self-evident, but again never mind.
I am not aware of any recent allusory swipes against your character. Nor do I have any idea (or need to) what might have got you worried on that count.
On Williamson, you might be interested in this. On Bishop Wagner, this.

In every creature whatsoever goodness and beauty inhere February 4, 2009 at 9:29 am

1. Based on Tim’s comment, apparently I have not been disinvited.
2. Per what I stated above as regards the fairness of retroactivity this would have been the post in which I would have introduced my handle to be stable more than “brief months” but I need to address the question Tim raised and so indulge me on this please.
Tim, it was “something along those lines” as I indicated.
You wrote:
“‘I won’t venture to cite Christ as a model since I find it easier to be inspired by models that are human persons, Christ in traditional Catholic mythos and teaching not being a human person’
In all your study of Catholicism, were you perhaps absent when they talked about the incarnation?
“Christ was and is a human person… as well as a Divine person.”
I felt the bolded text of yours was aside though the irony of it might make it humorous was a little condescending in the manner I described above. SDG has acknowledged (initially he did not IIRC and others here also did not) my knowledegability as regards Catholic doctrine recently. I am someone who FWIW has met on a private, informal, unofficial basis with a Vatican official in the course of which meeting discussing with him some matters of doctrinal concern. BTW, the USCCB Office of the Catechism has an informal quiz on which it is asked a question of Christ. Among the answers is one that was much like what you wrote above that Christ is both a human and divine person. One answer is that Christ is one divine person and not a human person — the USCCB office identifies that one as the correct answer. I am still not sure you actually understand the doctrine, FWIW. The doctrine is not that Christ has but one person that is somehow a unity of the human and the divine. The doctrine rather is that there are various kinds of hypostases — angelic hypostases, human hypostases, divine hypostases, etc. And that in the human nature of Christ, which nature is a creature even though it might have a dignity proper to a non-creature, namely to God, (just as might be true of the unborn per the recent CDF reflection) there is for some strange reason no human hypostasis and that there is in present actual relation to the created human nature of Christ no human but only a divine hypostasis. I am also not sure you would understand other doctrines closely related to or part of the truth of the “hypostatic union” to which you refer. For example, the fact that all the divine persons and not just the Son, effected the hypostatic union might be unknown to you. Or the theological interpretation that the Incarnation at metaphysical bottom involves but a relation between God and a creature (the human nature of Christ) may be unknown to you. SDG was himself evidently not aware (based on the ignorance expressed in the Last Temptation of Christ thread) of the historical theological debate (IIRC Ludwig Ott does not class this question as “de fide”) as to whether it is true or revealed truth that the hypostatic union will persist forever even after the final consummation of all things. Or are you aware of the term “economic trinity” versus “ontological trinity” (it is sometimes phrased “immanent trinity” versus “ontological trinity”)? Some identify a close relationship between the “economic Trinity” and the “ontological Trinity” whereas others make the relationship less, tight, if you will. BTW, not all the doctrines of the Church are included in the Catechism. For example, the doctrine of Pre-B16 (this is not merely his private musing but this is a critical thing to understand in theology proper (proper as regards versus economy not versus philosophy)):
“the First Person does not beget the Son in the sense of the act of begetting coming on top of the finished Person; it [the First Person] is the act of begetting, of giving oneself, of streaming forth. It is identical with the act of giving.”
http://www.columbia.edu/cu/augustine/a/unique.html
Anyway, I was not meaning to be derogatory to you in alluding to your previous remarks. Rather since I have felt and SDG has to some degree acknowledged unfairness in my treatment here, including by himself, I always feel the need to cite some precedent when making a comment that someone, who has expressed previously with vagueness certain tortous desires as I IIRC I mentioned above, might be prone to for whatever reason it may be inclined to give it a strange interpretation. Let me just say as regards the previous central controversy that though I don’t recall this particular matter ever coming up explicitly with this specificity of name, that in the halls of the academy where I have had occasion to study, the handle of this post has in essence been expressed including by instructors and it was totally uncontroversial even amongst the Christian students. And for many, including Christians it was a no-brainer (except that some might not believe beauty to be objective in character and thus not inherent in the object that possesses beauty — the Catholic doctrine historically on this separate matter is FWIW that beauty is objective in character and inheres in the object that bears beauty as Fr Thomas Dubay, guest of CAL has expressed).
3. Let me make some comments as a point of personal privilege, if you will.
BTW, just as a suggestion, if you feel that some commenter ought to be banned, it may be more charitable or just (“charitable” references the virtue of charity and “just” the virtue of justice) in the future to convey that opinion privately rather than publically. Aside from an adverse effect it might have on those in authority it, should this matter to you, has an adverse effect on me. It is embarassing. I am a little puzzled why in certain cases, some would make the suggestion that some particular person be banned not only once in public but repeated times in public since presumably one’s opinion and the basis for it would have already been adequately conveyed.
Something worth reflecting on is that no one outside the religious mould that predmoninates here is a regular here who is not at least from time to time to some degree scorned at or otherwise mistreated in some fashion or other. Jeb something or other is at least occasionally mistreated by some regulars here as I recall reading one regular here apologizing to Jeb for how other regulars treated him in that instance. Anyway, there is a hostility to those perceived as outsiders that is readily apparent. Has there been any say non-monotheist regular whom you would say you went along amiably or even amicably with here? Ever? What does that tell you? That non-monotheists are for the most part all scoundrels? That this blog only attracts like minded individuals for the most part? (Some have opined that this blog is “for Catholics” … if so perhaps that should be made clear somewhere)
Let me briefly say that the caricature of my view above that I presented a certain person as “poorly misunderstood” is egregiously unjust as unjust as the caricature of Pat Buchanan’s views in his recent book that some have made, saying he presented Adolf Hitler as a victim of misunderstanding.
The utter calumny that I am “satanist” is likewise false and I am a little disappointed that this calumny which is prescinding from its utter falsehood, totally unsubstantiated, in my view in violation of the rules, has not been objected to by a single individual here.
One who suggests that I am a customer of prostitutes (not in the post above but in a very clear insinuation that Tim J was alone in eventually objecting to as bad form) are praised as examples of model Catholic behavior on this blog by a moderator. And while the person who attributed being “satanist” to me was not to his credit praised as a model of Catholic behavior, the person who above said the equivalent, suggesting that my “father” was Satan was praised so. Since no objection to it has been lodged by anyone, I am at a loss to wonder if such praise is still adhered to. I am also at a loss as to why one should overreact with “contempt” to perceived insinuations and yet be utterly slient in the past and now.
If you wish, feel free to disinvite me for taking the opportunity to deny and decry the allegation that I am “satanist” or that my “father” is Satan. I am understanding your previous statement to be accomodative of this but if it is not and while the Brazilian Rotten Orange’s misapprenshion of it above is accomodated my own is not, then so be it.

In every creature whatsoever goodness and beauty inhere February 4, 2009 at 9:45 am

“OTOH, I see you have not clarified your willingness to honorably abide by any such disinvitation from Jimmy, as I asked you to”
This is a miscontrual of what has transpired here. If it is the requirement of you that I make a public “committment” to abide by such a thing which apparently from what you say here is still pending, then feel free to on your own authority disinvite me right now. As I will not make such a “committment” in response to your previous demand which was expressed rudely. Yours is a miscontrual as while I have not made a “committment” as you have suggested, I have elucidated the matter in good faith. You did NOT ask me to clarify that elucidation. So your construal of your request for a public “commitment” as a request for a clarification of a “willingness” is false, especially since such willingness was “clarified” in response to you already. Perhaps you are ignorant of the difference theologically between being faithful to one’s moral duties and saying that one has no reason to believe one would not be unfaithful in this particular matter — as I HAVE said to you — and making a specific “committment”, a promise to be faithful in a specific matter. The latter changes the moral nature of things. For example, in some cases it can make a venial sin into (objectively) a grave sin. I want to excuse your remark as one made of ignorance or carlessness.
SDG, the reason why I expressed that issue of retroactivity (perhaps you did not understand what I was saying there) is that arguably in the past rule additions have been made that had some measure of retroactive effect. I’d rather not get into specifics but it was at a time when I was not a member (participant) of this blog community IIRC. I don’t recall if it was during a time when you were co-blogger.

For all x, x is good February 4, 2009 at 9:48 am

SDG, you did not choose to clarify whether the previous handle was amenable to you. In any event, I’ve decided on a handle now and will for the foreseeable future use it or variations of it.
Please do clarify my previous question as regards disinvitation.

For all x, x is beautiful February 4, 2009 at 9:58 am

“On Williamson, you might be interested in this. On Bishop Wagner, this.”
Thank you. On the matter of Williamson it would not appear to meet the request of the German Chancellor that the Pope personally do more than what he has done but we will see how she reacts. Also it appears the statement reported in the NY Times is “unsigned” and thus apparently devoid of any magisterial authority or any authentic authority. It’s unclear also whether what is to be required of Williamson will be required also of the many thousands/millions (whatever the number may be) who share in such views. However the daughter of the Lutheran sacred minister German Chancellor might perceive it, frankly the unsigned statement of the Vatican Secretary of State does not really do little if anything at all official on the Vatican’s part in addressing this matter to the objective issues raised by the German Chancellor. For the issue of whether it is doctrinally permitted while remaining Catholic to for example impute the guilt of the crucifixion of Jesus on the Jewish people needs to be addressed by authentic acts and not by unsigned statements (please note the definition of “authentic” here)

bill912 February 4, 2009 at 10:03 am

Rule 3, anyone?

For all x, x is true February 4, 2009 at 10:06 am

“On Bishop Wagner, this.”
That does not actually address the concern since whether a particular word was used or not he did say that it was not a mere coincidence that punishment fell upon homosexuals and the like. And also the issue of the tsunami in which the cleric DID explicitly, specifically use the word punishment is not even mentioned in that post. That blog while informative, is IMO uncharitable for ex. towards the Associated Press. When the AP makes mention of the Pontiff’s German heritage and nativity in the context of an article that makes mention of the German Chancellor’s exhortation to the Pope, it does so since it might interest readers to learn the commonalilty of Germanness between the German Chancellor and the Pope. Not mentioning it would be journalistically unwise.

For all x, x is one February 4, 2009 at 10:10 am

IMO, bill as well as Inocecio in this thread have been in violation of rule 24.

For all x, x is true February 4, 2009 at 10:22 am

I meant to say “bill as well as Matheus” have been in violation of rule 24. My apology to inocecio for the inadvertent typo there.

(x) x is good February 4, 2009 at 10:27 am

I meant to write that bill and Mattheus have been in volation of rule 24 as regards my alleged “satanism” or being a disciple of Satan

SDG February 4, 2009 at 10:43 am

C:
Good grief. I’ll say it once more: You have GOT find a way to be more succinct and less — I don’t know, myopically analytical, endlessly sensitive, morbidly introspective, something. Find the problem. These long, long posts footnoting every rabbit trail to the third and fourth generation, speculating on what you think all other parties involved do or don’t understand, detailing previous offenses against you, expounding on the history of your posting career, etc. are a self-indulgence and a trial. (And I wrote this paragraph BEFORE your last several posts!)
I have not “demanded” a commitment from you to abide by any disinvitation you may receive. Call it a challenge. Whatever comments you may or may not previously have made must have been lost on me in the torrent of your verbiage. I can’t read everything.
You ask: “Has there been any say non-monotheist regular whom you would say you went along amiably or even amicably with here? Ever?”
Did you ever meet Smoky Mountain? A model regular, and an agnostic. I wish he still hung out here, though I think I can say confidently that his drifting away wasn’t over any perceived hostility.
I am confident that Matheus, who sometimes misses nuances of English, did not mean to suggest that you were a satanist, only that you were engaging in what he not unreasonably regarded as pro-satan propaganda. (PLEASE do not feel the need to defend yourself against this charge or expend a single syllable perpetuating the subject. Forbear.)
I might be inclined to remonstrate with bill912 over his allusion to John 8:41 comparing you to the Jews of Jesus’ day, but frankly you are not wholly innocent there. Long spoon wisdom.
I concur with Tim J on the inappropriateness of the insinuations you describe. I don’t see everything and can’t interact with every problem in the combox.
I will not make an issue either of your long recent handle or even over the nonsensical and bogus “For all x, x is good.” It is very nearly as false as a six-term sentence can be, but it’s not patently offensive like what I objected to.
Finally, I thought I did respond to your question about disinvitation. If you asked another question, it too may have been swept away in the torrent.
Be brief. Be brief. Be brief.

For all x, for all P, if T(P), P(x) February 4, 2009 at 11:22 am

If you choose not to read everything, just read the bolded part below
SDG, you miscontrued my statement again as regards Smokey Mountain. I mentioned not anything about hostility solely in relation to what might be perceived that might cause one to drift away.
As for not reading everything that’s fine and understandable. What’s not understandable is making derogatory statements of me that might turn out to be self-discovered by you to be false were you to have read everything as was the case here.
SDG, you have now accused me of lying. Please demonstrate where I have lied. Be specific. Else, please retract and apologize for that accusation.
As for my handle “For all x, x is good” your dismissal of it as nonsensical and bogus betrays your total ignorance of the Catholic philosophical doctrine of the transcendentals. For in Catholic philosophical doctrine (expressed here more in the terms of analytic philosophy appropriately adapted), the very definition (at least extensively speaking) of a transcendental is a predicate P of which it is true of all objects in the relevant universe of discourse that “For all objects x, P(x)”. IOW, Q is a transcendental if and only if it is true that for all x, Q(x). Since per Catholic philosophy, the good, the true, the one, and the beautiful are all transcendentals (there are also some others), it would be true of each of them that for all x, x is R (where one replaces in this schema “good”, “true”, “one” “beautiful” for R).
Frankly if you weren’t so sensitive to certain matters (which no one in academia would find “patently offensive”) or so frankly ignorant (as demonstrated above) then my posts could be a lot shorter. But I often feel that I need to endlessly clarify and qualifier lest I step on someone’s toes and you well, ban me.
I am taking your response to my question to be that there is no disinvitation pending or anything of that sort. I need to know this so that I can safely for example no longer bookmark this page and not visit it. If for example, I don’t visit the blog for a while or this page for a while then I might miss the disinvitation announcement and inadvertently contravene it. Please advise if my understanding here is not correct.
A little comic irony in this handle that may be lost on persons not acquainted with higher order logic.

For all P, T(P)-> for all x, P(x) February 4, 2009 at 11:29 am

Incidentally, while I will respect your wishes on the matter, IMO, making a new charge or lending support to an old one and then asking that I not say anything of it is the height of unfairness. You leave me defenseless. I still await your specification of where as you have recently alleged I have lied or your retraction of that allegation.

For all P, T(P)-> for all x, P(x) February 4, 2009 at 11:29 am

Incidentally, while I will respect your wishes on the matter, IMO, making a new charge or lending support to an old one and then asking that I not say anything of it is the height of unfairness. You leave me defenseless. I still await your specification of where as you have recently alleged I have lied or your retraction of that allegation.

For all P, T(P)-> for all x, P(x) February 4, 2009 at 11:29 am

Incidentally, while I will respect your wishes on the matter, IMO, making a new charge or lending support to an old one and then asking that I not say anything of it is the height of unfairness. You leave me defenseless. I still await your specification of where as you have recently alleged I have lied or your retraction of that allegation.

For all x, x is good February 4, 2009 at 11:31 am

Upon closer reading it appears you are saying that a decision does pend as to the matter of disinvitation. Please advise if that is accurate and please also give an ETA on that so that I can come back to this page at that later date (the ETA) and leave this blog in the interim.

Margaret February 4, 2009 at 11:47 am

Wow, what a weird thread. I thought it was about the SSPX…

SDG February 4, 2009 at 12:01 pm

“I mentioned not anything about hostility solely in relation to what might be perceived that might cause one to drift away.”
Is this English syntax? Is this meant to have meaning for me? I’m pretty good with the language, but you’ve buffaloed me this time.
Your increasingly frequent and personally dismissive claims of ignorance underlying every contradiction of any statement you make have gone beyond condescension into rudeness. It has to stop. If you are the only non-ignorant person on this board, why cast your pearls before swine? If there are communities where you can be properly appreciated, why not find one and go there? And if you are going to slum as a god among swine, then you are going to have to freaking accommodate yourself to our wretched condition and not kick us in the head for our poor inability to appreciate your brilliant pearls of wisdom.
Your appeal to propriety in academia seems bogus in this context. To formulate a statement so radically offensive that it could not reasonably be calmly discussed in some academic setting might or might not be impossible, but it would at any rate take some doing. It doesn’t follow that every assertion capable of bearing calm academic discussion is or ought to be socially acceptable as a T-shirt slogan, sig quote or combox handle. What you regard as my excessive sensitivity is in fact my social responsibility for many people other than myself.
I have no idea what Jimmy may or may not do at such time as he may get around to looking over some recent comboxes, or in what time frame he might do it.
When the heck did I accuse you of lying? What could you possibly be talking about? Oh wait, I think I might have it — was it when I said you weren’t wholly innocent as regards bill912’s comment? If so, once again you’ve misread me. That wasn’t an accusation of lying. But since to clarify further would only invite a new round of discussion on a subject I am determined to cauterize, why don’t we take it offline (or at least off-combox). Write to me at Decent Films and I’ll be happy to continue this via email.

Me February 4, 2009 at 5:55 pm

Dear “For all x, x is good”, aka Iecwgabi,
Gas chambers… embarrassment… scorn… mistreatment… hostility… utter calumny… grave sin… holocaust… denial… denial of service… contempt… conflict… insinuations…unfairness… ignorance… carelessness… misconstrual
According to you (to the extent that you exist), to the extent that these things exist, they are good and beautiful! And if you deny that it is good, you deny that it exists. That is simply marvelous!
And what about you? To what extent do you exist? Are you good?
Jesus answered, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone.”
Signed,
Me

Vx(GOOD(x)) February 5, 2009 at 2:54 pm

“Me”
Without speaking of anything specific you named, I advise you to read this again:
“As for my handle “For all x, x is good” your dismissal of it as nonsensical and bogus betrays your total ignorance of the Catholic philosophical doctrine of the transcendentals. For in Catholic philosophical doctrine (expressed here more in the terms of analytic philosophy appropriately adapted), the very definition (at least extensively speaking) of a transcendental is a predicate P of which it is true of all objects in the relevant universe of discourse that “For all objects x, P(x)”. IOW, Q is a transcendental if and only if it is true that for all x, Q(x). Since per Catholic philosophy, the good, the true, the one, and the beautiful are all transcendentals (there are also some others), it would be true of each of them that for all x, x is R (where one replaces in this schema “good”, “true”, “one” “beautiful” for R).”
I also advise you to read what Catholic philosophy has to say about the nature of evil. Traditionally, evil as such, properly speaking, does not exist. Things associated with evil may exist, but evil as such, properly speaking, does not exist. Evil obtains but evil does not as such properly speaking exist. Evil obtains when there is the non-existence of a thing that ought to exist. So for example blindness in a human would be a case of evil obtaining as a human is meant to be able to see but blindness in a rock would not be a case of evil obtaining.
I cannot describe your and SDG’s nescience as mere nescience. It is ignorance. For while it may not belong to certain classes of people to know these things (though I would dispute that when it comes to Catholic adults which I presume “Me” is), it does belong to every person able to write some of the things above and parry about with criticisms, in some cases rather brusque in language, to know before making such sharp criticisms. If one had made tentative criticisms, it may have been plausibly mere nescience.
The sarcasm you use in “… marvelous!” is not a display of wit, but a deep betrayal of profound ignorance when it comes to Catholic theological or philosophical doctrine and patrimony.

(x)(GOOD(x)) February 5, 2009 at 3:05 pm

BTW, in Catholic doctrine, philosophical and theological, it is not of created things that the predicate “good” is dubiously applied but rather of God that the predicate “good” is dubiously applied. This is a somewhat distinct matter from the matter of the transcendentals.
God as conceived by some Catholic theologians cannot be the subject of any predicate conceived by man. The thought of other Catholic theologians (and the Catechism favors this line of thought) including Thomas is that the predicate “good” can be applied to God in a qualified sense.
How this squares with the scripture you cited may pose a problem for scriptural fundamentalists, but fortunately scriptural fundamentalism or proof texting is not authentic Catholicism and no lay person can authentically interpret scripture. If what seems to you to be the plain sense of scripture disagrees with what Catholic tradition or the church holds or authentically understands the scripture to be, then generally it is considered sinful by traditional theologians of the SSPX variety to go with one’s understanding in opposition to the doctrine of the ages or in continuity with it, the present mind of the church.

(x)(ONE(x)) February 5, 2009 at 3:09 pm

“to the extent that these things exist, they are good and beautiful!”
P.S. you seem to deny that everything, to the extent that it exists, is good. If you truly deny this, then, arguably, that is materially heretical. I would advise that you consult with a knowledgeable priest with haste. I will pray for you that God may guide you in your journey.

(x)(y)(~GOOD(x)->~x=y) February 5, 2009 at 3:17 pm

BTW, in case it was lost on SDG, I was not intending to rehash anything Tim J said in the past nor was I at that time or now disturbed by it (if anything IIRC I was moved by charity for a greater loving concern for him). I was simply responding to a question asked by Tim J of what he might have said in the past. Since not responding may have led to criticism as well, I guess it is a lose lose proposition for the likes of me.

(x)(y)(~GOOD(x)->~x=y) February 5, 2009 at 3:17 pm

BTW, in case it was lost on SDG, I was not intending to rehash anything Tim J said in the past nor was I at that time or now disturbed by it (if anything IIRC I was moved by charity for a greater loving concern for him). I was simply responding to a question asked by Tim J of what he might have said in the past. Since not responding may have led to criticism as well, I guess it is a lose lose proposition for the likes of me.

(x)(y)(~GOOD(x)->~x=y) February 5, 2009 at 3:17 pm

BTW, in case it was lost on SDG, I was not intending to rehash anything Tim J said in the past nor was I at that time or now disturbed by it (if anything IIRC I was moved by charity for a greater loving concern for him). I was simply responding to a question asked by Tim J of what he might have said in the past. Since not responding may have led to criticism as well, I guess it is a lose lose proposition for the likes of me.

Me February 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm

Dear “(x)(ONE(x))”,
I advise… I also advise… I cannot describe your and SDG’s nescience as mere nescience. It is ignorance… The sarcasm you use in “… marvelous!” is not a display of wit, but a deep betrayal of profound ignorance… I would advise that you consult with a knowledgeable priest with haste.
Speaking of haste, ignorance and advice, have you considered why it is you post so much and think yourself fit to advise?
it would seem rather that it be just to paint him as someone paranoid and prone to seeing conspiracy.
And have you considered the way and measure you use to judge others will be measured to you?
Signed,
Me
P.S. Me reminds of Do-Re-Mi from the Sound of Music, a film +Richard Williamson termed “soul-rotting slush” and “virtually” pornographic, starring Julie Andrews, the “rolling canine female”.

Tim Jones February 5, 2009 at 6:24 pm

“‘I won’t venture to cite Christ as a model since I find it easier to be inspired by models that are human persons, Christ in traditional Catholic mythos and teaching not being a human person’
My problem with this earlier silly comment, C, – what got me rattled in the first place – was your suggestion that Jesus is not HUMAN enough to be a fitting role model for you, though I will not defend my momentary confusion when I stated that he was “a human person and a divine person”. This was in error which I immediately acknowledged.
I must confess, though, that I am shocked, *shocked* at your insinuation that had you pointed out the error, I might have failed to acknowledge it just as quickly. This implied aspersion to my character, unfortunately, gives me serious doubts as to the extent of your great loving concern on my behalf.

Brother Cadfael February 6, 2009 at 9:15 am

X,
[I]t does belong to every person able to write some of the things above…
But not, apparently, to write well, or concisely.

(x)GOOD(x) February 9, 2009 at 5:55 am

“every person able to write some of the things above” was an allusion not to myself, but to my critics.
Since you seem concerned with my ability to write well (I am a published author … and could use all the help I can get) perhaps you could in charity offer some friendly tips? In my published work, I have relied on editors. When there are guidelines for length (for ex. in a newspaper opinion piece), I abide by them beforehand. FWIW, my published work has only been minimally edited and doesn’t quite reflect the style of writing that I employ here. And while you help me with writing, since you failed to comprehend the allusion, and thus confirming that I wrote poorly, perhaps you might be open to some tips on improving reading comprehension. I have found, FWIW, that studying a wide variety of languages helps, including outside of the Indo-European family and also including artificial languages such as used in computer science & programming and most especially some formal languages of mathematical logic, acquainting oneself with both first order logic and higher order logics and the ways the latter can and cannot be represented in the former.
In both study and in life in general, don’t obsess over any one thing, including religion. To the extent that contemporary psychology might find spirituality healthy, it does so only as one aspect of one’s life. The SSPX take religion too seriously. Religious things, religious teachings, rituals, etc., are not the goal; they are merely aids in our spiritual progression, our formation in God’s womb that is the universe that we might aided by all the things in the universe, be made more beautiful. If our time here as wayfarers is as some authors have suggested metaphorically being in the womb of God that is the universe, a universe and womb which God nevertheless has the right to exert control over including per the Old Testament and Catholic doctrine kill lives of innocents, then one might wonder what wisdom such truth might shed on matters more present to us … and not just religious matters like the SSPX … life is much broader than that.
The error of the SSPX which causes them to not appreciate the truth of Vatican II is that they see man as centrally to the exclusion of any other focal point, a religious animal defined by his supernatural end. But that is just laughably false. What do they think a SUPERNATURAL end is? It is an end not proper to the nature of man! One can look at the SSPX crisis in two ways: (1) fundamental to itself or (2) fundamental to what occasioned the disrupture from truth by all parties. Reflection on (2) leads one to the hypothesis or is it theory? (btw, if one studies formal language, one will learn there is another technical sense to “theory”), that the source of the problem is not the kind of thing that Fr Reese identified (the lack of “smart” people around a smart pope … the unsmart people unable to but just assent to what the pope suggests) but rather a more general problem of a historical “brain drain” of the intelligentsia over the centuries drifting toward secular centers and opportunities of learning or enterprise … when such a “brain drain” occurs and brilliance does not preponder, the church does not as in past ages have an alacrity of intellect to confront challenges that may arise without causing fissures of unprecedented scale and kind (not wrt to SSPX alone, but the whole gamut).
As popes have recognized, there is a catechetical crisis. There is also a crisis in priestly education and recruiting. In traditional writings btw, it says that candidates to the priesthood should be of above average intelligence. I wonder if the SSPX follows that traditional practice.

Tim Jones February 9, 2009 at 7:08 am

“To the extent that contemporary psychology might find spirituality healthy, it does so only as one aspect of one’s life.”
And what if one finds contemporary psychology unhealthy…??
Man’s natural end, of course, is to know God, to love and serve him in this life and be happy with him forever in the next.
Though some people may use the term “supernatural” to describe eternal life, you ought to know better than to think this could mean “UN-natural”, and so to present a serious concern for the eternal state of a person’s soul as concern for “an end not proper to the nature of man” is rather a straw man.
Besides, to call eternal life “supernatural” does in a way reflect the truth that this life transcends what we normally think of as man’s “natural” life or goes beyond observations of the “natural” world, so I think you are again straining at a semantic gnat.

Brother Cadfael February 9, 2009 at 8:43 am

X,
I would suggest a filter of some sort. Not everything that pops into your head needs to make its way to your posts. (I am obviously not familiar with any of your other written work, and those may be models of clarity, so my comments pertain only to your posts on this blog.) The excellent points you make get buried in an avalanche of meandering, inconsequential points.

Brother Cadfael February 9, 2009 at 8:43 am

X,
I would suggest a filter of some sort. Not everything that pops into your head needs to make its way to your posts. (I am obviously not familiar with any of your other written work, and those may be models of clarity, so my comments pertain only to your posts on this blog.) The excellent points you make get buried in an avalanche of meandering, inconsequential points.

bill912 February 9, 2009 at 2:20 pm

Brother C, nice to see your comments again. Hope all is well with you.

Anonymous February 11, 2009 at 7:27 am

Tim, I invite you to read say Ludwig Ott’s Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, cover to cover, especially the part where it speaks of man’s supernatural end … and find out also what the difference is between a natural end and supernatural end … and see also the irony in your statement about semantic gnats given that you are the one who is criticizing my terminology, and then after you have done all that, get back to me and then maybe we’ll see if I would have been right about what you consider to be an “implied aspersion to your character.” Tim, seriously, saying that it is man’s natural end to be in heaven is heresy. Now when you criticize my terminology in this heretical way and say I am straining at semantic gnats (before I pointed out it was heresy to you … my post there wasn’t criticizing you, it was criticizing the SSPX … unless you associate with the SSPX, I don’t see why you’d be offended) … there’s an irony there … ) And wrt to Jesus not being a human person, I wasn’t criticizing anyone’s terminology; you out of the blue came in and criticized mine! and again in a heretical way. So when you criticize my terminology it is … what? … and when I criticize your criticism of my terminology as heretical, it is …. what? I can, if you like, give you the name of the seminary professor priest who in homily and in teaching has stressed that Jesus is “not a human person.” Maybe you can tell him that he has gnat problem. O and you can also tell him that you don’t care how many letters he has after his name like you said of another person who had passed away to meet his maker.
I’ve left the church. The church does not recognize as valid the marriages of some people close to me who have married recently or relatively recently. These people include some who were raised Catholic and no longer practice the Catholic faith and don’t consider themselves Catholic but because they have not “formally defected” from the church, which apparently now requires a written submission to church authority, their marriages are considered invalid for lack of canonical form. In the olden days, canon law did not even have that exception. This seems to me to be of questionable legality since American law forbids churches from exercising discipline over those who do not wish to be treated as members. Anyway, I cannot be proud of a church that says of my friends’ marriages that they are not real and that objectively they live in sin and I cannot be proud of a church that says I cannot attend their weddings, receptions, or otherwise congratulate or honor them and celebrate with them.
I can be proud of a country where the L.A. archdiocese is being investigated by federal prosecutors under some kind of fradulent services statute that was occassioned by an effort to root out corruption in government from what I understand. I can be proud of a country where I am hopeful that the Legionaries of Christ will similarly be investigated, especially now since the Vatican has said that they plan no “immediate” action on the matter. I implore Catholics, especially those who are vulnerable youth or who are responsible for vulnerable youth but also those who are considering being seminarians (since Legionaries have acknowledged that some seminarians were most likely abused by the Founder whom they style “Our Father”) and those who are parents, relatives, or friends of those considering being seminarians (or any consecrated life), to simply be aware of some facts: (1) There is no obligation per Catholic theology and per Catholic law to for example go to Mass if it is morally impossible for you to go. So if going might put someone you care about in danger or in danger down the road, you should not go. (2) If it is morally impossible to place yourself or your children in catechetical programs, then again there is no obligation per Catholic doctrine for you to do so; indeed, you should not do so. In general, there is no obligation to practice any aspect of Catholic faith, if doing so is morally impossible. So for ex. if confession causes extreme scrupulosity, there’s no obligation to go (and there isn’t one anyway if you haven’t committed mortal sin). Sometimes in dealing with scrupulous individuals, confessors will waive certain confession requirements by not demanding that they name their sins by kind and number. But in extreme cases, it may be morally impossible to go at all. According to Aquinas, if one in good faith while in the state of mortal sin not knowing one is in mortal sin, receives the Eucharist, then mortal sin is wiped away. Besides scrupulosity it may be morally impossible to go to confession given what information we have learned from church documents once made secret under pain of mortal sin and excommunication reserved to the pope, that indicate that certain forms of sexual abuse have been common in the confessional. Since Catholics are reminded by theologians, sometimes under pain of excommunication, that they shouldn’t speak publically except to church authorities of confessions against priests since the priests are unable to defend themselves, even if you personally never experienced such things, you never know how common it might be. That is one amongst a number of reasons why I think should this be determined to be legal by U.S. courts, that some non-profit public interest group should explore with legal counsel whether it might be legal to go “undercover” and expose what things untoward may be going in confessionals. I believe the secular government has already stepped in or exerted pressure in some places in Europe where confessionals made of glass are being introduced.
Many Catholics justify attending SSPX chapels by saying it is morally impossible for them to attend regular Masses. I think it is clear now that until the SSPX gets its act together in purging all-Semitism, anti-government sentiment, paranoid conspiracy from its ranks, that it is morally impossible, also, to attend their services. It was not just one bishop, but also two others who have made questionable statements as well as several others who are SSPX priests who have done so. Even Bishop Fellay has not actually said the statement of Williamson et all was false. The closest he has come has been in deriding his actions as “nonsense” which in the careful art of Catholic mental reservation probably just is speaking to its imprudence, not to its falsity.
It’s also clear that ideology cannot be a safeguard. Abuse or other danger, physical or spiritual, lurks in every wing of the church, from liberal, to archconservative. Per the Catechism, the church is in essence a union of the heart by bonds of charity. So if one leaves the institutional church, we do not know if that is to the advantage of our salvation or to our disadvantage. On EWTN on The Journey Home, one convert to the Catholic Church wanted to convert at one time but was told to wait, to reflect more. Discouraged, his conversion was delayed for years. After he eventually converted (he ended up becoming a priest), he spoke to that person who caused him to be discouraged about the matter and asked if that mightn’t have been a mistake. The person replied that had he converted at time, his faith may have been shaken given what was going in the seminaries of that time. Maybe what is true of providential outcome in delaying conversion is also true of stepping back from the institutional church, always eager to return once the secular authorities have brought order back to the house of God.
—A victim of spiritual abuse at a tender age both inside the confessional and outside the confessional from the words/actions of two different priests; feel free to dismiss me as many of you did the victims of Maciel and the Legion—

Tim Jones February 11, 2009 at 8:56 am

“The natural end of man, which consists in man’s natural knowledge and love of God, and in the natural glorification of God, is subordinated and adapted to his supernatural end. The natural order is thus used as a means for attaining the ultimate supernatural goal. Man, by reason of his whole dependence on God, is bound to strive after the supernatural destination determined for him by God. If he neglects this, he cannot reach the natural goal, either.”
Ludwig Ott – “Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma” (which I happened to have right here on my bookshelf)
The confusion may have come because I used the word “natural” in the more Augustinian sense of “original”, which (according to Ott) “includes also the supernatural gifts of the primitive state”.
In other words “natural” as “in accord with the purpose of man’s original creation”.
Man was made to be with God, so it is perfectly “natural” that he seek eternal life and communion with God. Again, “supernatural” does not mean “un-natural”.

Tim Jones February 11, 2009 at 10:20 am

We have a continuing problem of talking past one another, C, because I most often speak in a normal conversational tone that involves things like more relaxed grammar, less exact vocabulary, hyperbole, poetic and cultural references and other ways of expression people normally use daily.
You invariably interpret everything I say (I won’t speak for others) in the most exacting, narrow, technical, theological sense (where it suits you), and seem to insist that this is how I must interpret everything, as well. This communication problem, I believe, is at the root of your continued cries of “heresy”.
There *is* more than one way to use the word “natural”, for instance.
And yet, I can’t stay away, because I am loathe to see your consistent, predictable advocacy on behalf of any and every enemy of the Church (ostensibly in the name of Purity of Doctrine, no less) go unchallenged. This is only because – being an average schmoe – I think I understand how the average schmoe will read and understand your comments.
So, there we are. Leave yourself all the linguistic loopholes you like, I’ll keep addressing what I see as the particular odor and overall *drift* of your comments, in the name of average schmoes everywhere. Doubtless, someone (practically anyone) well versed in theology could do a much better job of it, but such minds should not be occupied with labor so menial, but are put to better use writing books or articles or otherwise enlightening the faithful.

Brother Cadfael February 11, 2009 at 2:52 pm

Thanks bill912 – I hope you’re doing well too.

Me February 11, 2009 at 5:54 pm

I’ve left the church… I cannot be proud of a church that says I cannot attend their weddings, receptions, or otherwise congratulate or honor them and celebrate with them.
What church is that? (I have a friend who also recently left the church, right after dropping off some baked goods. 😉 Or, who says you cannot attend? I hear many different versions about what Catholics can and cannot do with respect to invalid marriages. One apologist, who used to post here and over at Catholic Answers, said in part, “The Church does not explicitly forbid Catholics from attending presumptively-invalid marriages. Catholics must use their own prudential judgment in making the decision, keeping in mind the need to uphold the Catholic understanding of the sanctity of marriage. One rule of thumb that may be helpful in making such decisions might be to ask yourself if you believe the couple is doing the best that they can to act honorably and according to the truth that they have.” Do you agree with that? Or was she mistaken.

For no s, ~(s is good) February 13, 2009 at 7:32 pm

Tim, who is using some “linguistic loophole”? I who without criticizing anyone, present Catholic philosophy and Catholic theology using standard or historic Catholic theological or philosophical terminology and embracing standard or historic Catholic theological or philosophical doctrine … or you who on one hand seems to say that you meant it in some Augustinian sense (which by the way, you don’t seem to even get … you might want to in addition to exploring the difference between the supernatural and the natural, also explore the difference between the relatively supernatural and absolutely supernatural … and while you are at it, look up preternatural … and try to pinpoint where exactly the Catholic terminology might be confusing you) and then back track and say you weren’t thinking of Augustine at all but were just speaking colloquially … well “colloquially” you could say that homosexuality is natural to many animal species inasmuch as colloquially it occurs “in nature” — but in the Catholic sense, “natural” means proper to the nature of. Perhaps you are taking your queues from Evangelical Rick Warren who spoke of how homosexuality is natural for some people and how for himself he naturally wants to sleep with every beautiful woman he sees (remarkably, IIRC, he said this while being interviewed by a female reporter) and instead of taking your queue from Catholic doctrine and patrimony. Maybe you should hold off on that NT Wright study and go back to the Catholic basics.
You seem to grasping for some truth but in your endeavor to express it you fall into heresy because you want to criticize me while trying to express the same. That truth is that (let me help you out), what is not proper to the nature of man need not contradict the nature of man.
Anyway, you said you would acknowledge error if I were the one pointing it out to you … surprise surprise, just like that other gentleman, you fluster. You still have a chance to do what is right and acknowledge your error. Everyone of course does.
A supernatural end, such as heaven, is not proper to the nature of man but like any supernatural end it is of course by definition not contradictory to what is proper to the nature of man (neither is btw the absence of the supernatural end of man in someone contradictory of what is proper to the nature of man — for example, limbo includes an absence of the beatific vision, a supernatural gift and end of man, and should limbo exist, the absence of this supernatural gift would not be in contradiction to what is proper to the nature of man).
BTW, whatever sense of “natural” you meant, are you saying that Augustine used it in the sense you did? If not, which Catholic theologian/philosopher has used it in the sense that you have? Now, which Catholic theologians/philosophers have used it in the sense that I did? (or for that have used the notion of “is good” as I have; or have affirmed the doctrine of the transcendentals by which each transcendental is predicated of everything that is; or have affirmed the objective quality of goodness and beauty by saying that goodness and beauty always inhere in an object?) Pretty much every one of them right? So who is using “linguistic loopholes”? Someone who suggests he was thinking of Augustine (please … do you take us for fools? or as Ed Peters wrote of the Superior General’s remarks “idiot children”?) and then later says he was speaking colloquially and is a Schmoe (Augustine a Schmoe? Or is it the Augustine-Ott hybrid that is a Schmoe?)
@Me. I have not visited your link and so I won’t comment on what that female apologist may have said. I will note however that Jimmy Akin has opined several times on the radio that it is not morally permissible to attend a marriage that one knows or believes to be invalid. He says doing so signifies approval of the marriage. AFAIK, Mr Akin has not changed his opinion. So it would appear that he and that female apologist are not in total agreement, at least if your portrayal of her opinion is correct. In any event her opinion matters little; she does not have to my knowledge much education, formal or informal on moral theology. Jimmy Akin’s opinion also matters little to me but it probably would matter more to many here. And, FWIW, Jimmy Akin’s opinion (or the one he held and I presume he still holds) is in more or less agreement with the judgment of moralists of the pre-Vatican II era which the SSPX and its defenders hold dear. Nothing magisterial in nature has negated that and past magisterial teachings of relevance would seem to still hold weight. But to answer your question, if that was the whole of what she wrote, she is either nescient of what moralists have said AND/OR not fully transparent as to what the magisterium may have “implicitly” said AND/OR not fully transparent as to what the magisterium may have “explicitly” said in the past AND/OR not fully transparent as to distinguish between her own opinion, and the mind of the Church and that of moralists. She seems to not even mention moralists (if your quote is in full), and so discarding the whole work of moralists and instead replacing that with her own moral compass of a “rule of thumb” seems — if your portrayal is accurate — to have been a grave disservice to truth and to whomever she was responding to.
What Tim derides as my zeal for “purity of doctrine” is only my zeal for truth. Just as people interested in Mormonism should have everything laid bare about Mormon doctrine, the same should be true of Catholicism and its doctrine. It is a grave injustice that for example, in Fr. Heribert Jone’s Moral Theology that he suggests that some moral truths be kept secret from the lay faithful. That’s from a pre-Vatican II work, but this is a pattern that has continued. Just the other day, a Vatican official was nostalgic about how in the old days without the Internet, documents for canonists were left to canonists and for theologians to theologians and there was no need to educate others or clarify for others. But here’s something much worse — a doctrine kept secret not only de facto a la Mormonism but de jure — not just a legal document, but actual doctrinal truth:
http://www.tgcrossroads.org/news/archive.asp?aid=599
[VATICAN CITY (CNS)] – After years of study, the Vatican’s doctrinal congregation has sent church leaders a confidential document concluding that “sex-change” procedures do not change a person’s gender in the eyes of the church (…) The document was completed in 2000 and sent “sub secretum” (under secrecy) to the papal representatives in each country to provide guidance on a case-by-case basis to bishops. But when it became clear that many bishops were still unaware of its existence, in 2002 the congregation sent it to the presidents of bishops’ conferences as well. (…) The Vatican document’s specific points include: An analysis of the moral licitness of “sex-change” operations. It concludes that the procedure could be morally acceptable in certain extreme cases if a medical probability exists that it will “cure” the patient’s internal turmoil….

Tim Jones February 13, 2009 at 7:52 pm

C, does someone have to be “thinking of Augustine” to use a word in a more-or-less Augustinian sense?
“and then back track and say you weren’t thinking of Augustine at all but were just speaking colloquially”
Which I never said…
Fun With Syllogisms!!
A)Existence is good.
B)Cancer exists.
C) Therefore, cancer is good.
Discuss…

Tim Jones February 13, 2009 at 7:58 pm

If you really want to have some fun, go and post that on a cancer forum and then, when people get upset, write several long posts about how they’re obviously lacking in philosophical training and how you’re just trying to help them break free from their provincial mindset and understand The TRVTH.

For all x, (x is good) v ~(Mary is Theotokos) February 13, 2009 at 10:13 pm

Tim, I’m going to leave aside your continued error on Augustine.
Is heaven a gift proper to the nature of man? Is heaven an end proper to the nature of man? Catholic doctrine in answer to both questions, says “No.” Now that is the substance of the matter. If you want to redefine terms, that is your business. You specifically contradicted what I stated in terms of something not being proper to the nature of man. If you want to acknowledge that you didn’t understand what the English phrase “proper to the nature of man” means then that’s one thing, but you haven’t even done that. You have confused Catholics as to what is Catholic doctrine. You claimed by implication that heaven was a gift and an end proper to the nature of man. Do you acknowledge that that claim was an error?
I won’t even ask you to admit you made that erroneous claim. At least acknowledge for the sake of your readers that heaven is not an end proper to the nature of man. Feel free to add that you think the terminology that Catholic theology uses is unhelpful. But acknowledge the substance. If you just don’t understand the substance, then confess your nescience. Nescience is no sin and nothing to be embarasssed about.
BTW, I don’t think you understood what Catholic doctrine says about goodness.
I am sincerely trying to be helpful here. Please, please listen. OK?
You seem to have this view that some things are “good” and some things are “evil.” And that existence is one of the “good” things and that sin or doing harm to body is “evil” of some kind and that therefore the Unnamed and also Cancer must be “evil” and therefore “not good.”
Here’s where you are going all wrong. It’s a big big mess you have there, so I’m not sure where to start. Let me just present Catholic doctrine and I’m sure you can see for yourself where you are going wrong.
Catholic doctrine says that there is no such thing properly speaking as evil (thing meaning the Latin “res”). Evil is merely a name which we ascribe to states of affairs where there is an absence of a thing that ought to be there. So for example, we call the state of blindness in a man, evil (in terms of kind of evil, we call it “physical evil”) because a man ought to possess the capacity to see (a thing) but doesn’t. There’s no evil thing (res) properly speaking. Most critically, Catholic doctrine is adamant that there is no ontological reality — no ontological being — to evil — i.e. evil has no ontological reality and evil has no ontological being. Evil properly speaking does not have being. Evil is rather the ABSENCE of BEING in a situation where that BEING ought to be present. That’s all critical Catholic doctrine theological. Now we move on to Catholic doctrine philosophical.
In Catholic philosophy, BEING is ONE AND THE SAME THING as the GOOD. They are not merely harmonious with each other — they are literally one and the same thing and just notionally different (different in how we conceive of it, but in reality one and the same thing). The same is true of all the other “transcendentals.” And absolutely everything without exception IS GOOD to the very same extent as it HAS BEING and to the very same extent that it IS TRUE — and so on for the other “transcendentals.”
Now that’s not how modern man conceives of things, so this difficult to grasp, but this is the Catholic philosophical doctrine. Now SDG called this Catholic doctrine “nonsensical” and “bogus.” To your credit you have acknowledged I may be more educated on these matters and also to your credit you have a zeal to do what you think in some part of your mind or heart to be right. Now let me present something from a professional text, so rather than rely on SDG (who has presented nothing) or on my own word, you can rely on this book:
“The thesis that there is an intrinsic connection between being and goodness has a long tradition in philosophy. In the thirtheenth century however, this thesis received a new systematic elaboration because it was placed within a new theoretical framework, the doctrine of transcendentals (transcendentia). The term ‘transcendental’ suggests a kind of surpassing or going beyond. What is transcended is the special modes of being which Aristotle called the “categories.” Categories are determinations or contractions of that which is: not every being is a substance, or a quantity, or a quality, or a relation, etc. By contrast, the transcendentals are properties that belong to every being. So they transcend the categories, not because they refer to a reality beyond the categories but because they are not limited to one determinate category. Transcendentals are interchangeable or convertible with being that is itself a transcendental.
Being and Goodness: The Concept of the Good in Metaphysics and Philosophical Theology (Cornell University Press) (p.56)

I can tell you with absolute confidence that if you ask any academic who is competent in the philosophical theology of the medievals that he or she will confirm everything I’ve said as regards the medieval philosophical doctrine of the transcendentals. This is not something that is to my knowledge in any dispute in the academic community — anywhere. And no this blog does not count as the first case of such dispute in the academic community 😉
So it is not that x has existence, therefore x is good. That’s not how it works, Tim (i.e. not the way to think about it; “being” is not some thing that is padded on to something; being itself inheres in something and in terms of “thingness” (res), being and thing are one and the same thing — “res” is also a transcendental). Being itself is a transcendental and thus everything has being and likewise the good itself is a trascendental and thus everything is good — and having being and being good are considered one and the same thing. So to the extent that “cancer” — whatever you are referring to by that — has being, it is good and vice versa. If you are going to deny that it is good, then you must either say it has no being (which may be the case depending on what you mean by “cancer”) or commit yourself to rejecting some Catholic doctrine.
Since I don’t know what you mean by “cancer”, I won’t speak to that, but when speaking of the original subject you are undoubtedly alluding to, that person is not good in some “linguistic loophole” sense — that person is good in the proper sense and there is no proper sense of “good” by which it can be said that it is not the case that that person is good. OK, maybe there is just even more nescience here than I originally thought. Are you aware that all plants are good? Are you aware that all animals are good? Are you aware that a tiger which has killed your friend is nevertheless good? Are you aware that computers are good … and not merely instrumentally good, but that goodness inheres in them? Are you aware that mountains (say on some planet no one could ever visit or see by telescope) are good? Are you aware that each particle or wave in the universe is good? Now is it your impression that these things are all universally good merely because “well, they exist” … no they are good inasmuch as they have being and they are good in manifold ways inasmuch being inheres in them in manifold ways — likewise they have being inasmuch as they are good and they have being in manifold ways inasmuch as goodness inheres in them in manifold ways. Were you even aware of the doctrine that in God, existence and essence are one and the same thing? (this is assuming the Thomistic school that we can speak of God in a qualified way with human language). You seem to have this idea that “existence” or “being” is some lower form of good …. (to be fair, unfortunately, the way some apologists speak of this may have confused you), but being is not some form of good — being IS goodness and goodness IS being — and this is so in terms of the transcendentals of ALL creatures without exception. A thing has being to the extent that it is good and it is good to the extent that it has being and it is both good and has being to the extent that it is true — and so on. That’s true of animals, of plants, of any cell or group of cells, of angels, of men, of particles or waves, or stars or galaxies, of coitus outside marriage or coitus within marriage. But how does that square with Catholic doctrine you ask? Well I’ll SPELL IT OUT FOR YOU. According to Catholic doctrine, ceteris paribus, coitus outside of marriage has LESS BEING than coitus within marriage … and the BEING that is absent in a situation of coitus outside of marriage is something that should be present in such situation …. I thought you said you were an Augustine scholar who is able to make use of Augustine without even thinking about it?

Vt((t=t -> GOOD(t)) February 14, 2009 at 1:38 am

BTW, as someone who has dealt with cancer in loved ones, I don’t appreciate your mocking comments regarding my attitude to cancer.
Let me also note that the last two consecutive posts by Serena whom I have nothing against are together about equal in length to my previous post above. Let me also note that SDG recently told a “frankie” to not worry about being verbose when frankie was worried that someone would use that as a pretext to ban him.

Vt((t=t -> GOOD(t)) February 14, 2009 at 1:38 am

BTW, as someone who has dealt with cancer in loved ones, I don’t appreciate your mocking comments regarding my attitude to cancer.
Let me also note that the last two consecutive posts by Serena whom I have nothing against are together about equal in length to my previous post above. Let me also note that SDG recently told a “frankie” to not worry about being verbose when frankie was worried that someone would use that as a pretext to ban him.

Vt((t=t -> GOOD(t)) February 14, 2009 at 1:38 am

BTW, as someone who has dealt with cancer in loved ones, I don’t appreciate your mocking comments regarding my attitude to cancer.
Let me also note that the last two consecutive posts by Serena whom I have nothing against are together about equal in length to my previous post above. Let me also note that SDG recently told a “frankie” to not worry about being verbose when frankie was worried that someone would use that as a pretext to ban him.

Me February 14, 2009 at 3:05 am

I will note however that Jimmy Akin has opined several times on the radio that it is not morally permissible to attend a marriage that one knows or believes to be invalid. He says doing so signifies approval of the marriage.
And I will note Jimmy’s standard opine on this forum has been that he himself personally could not recommend attending (“I could not recommend that you attend”, “I don’t recommend showing up at sacraments where God will not show up”, “I cannot recommend attending a wedding that is known to be invalid”, etc.). He has noted that “present ecclesiastical law does not specifically address the situation, which means that we have to fall back on the principles of moral theology to help us settle the question.” Not personally recommending something is not the same as saying it’s morally impermissible under any and all circumstances. Does he say differently on the radio than he does on this forum?
So it would appear that he and that female apologist are not in total agreement
Neither recommends attending as the rule, and I have not seen anywhere where either has stated that the Church says it’s morally impermissible under any and all circumstances. So they would seem to be in agreement on that. Whether they hold the same opinion in every respect is not for me to say, but a comparison of their responses does seem to suggest that she at least expresses her opinion somewhat differently, and she cites the views expressed by the lay apostalate Catholics United for Faith for support/reference.
past magisterial teachings of relevance would seem to still hold weight
Which “past magisterial teachings of relevance” actually said, as you seemingly suggested, that the Church forbids attending? Or was that only an opinion?
I don’t know what you mean by “cancer”
Tim can speak for himself, but to many, “cancer” is often used as an example because of its strong association with suffering. After all, if it were not for the suffering, who would care about cancer? Suffering is a bad thing, we are so often told. But when we let the light of the Gospel shine on suffering, we see that suffering “is something good, before which the Church bows down in reverence with all the depth of her faith in the Redemption… It is suffering, more than anything else, which clears the way for the grace which transforms human souls.” (Salvifici Doloris) And, “Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I complete what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the Church” (Col 1:24).
If you really want to have some fun, go and post that on a cancer forum and then, when people get upset…
@Tim, there are many Church teachings that would upset people if posted for “fun” on a cancer forum. And there are also people on cancer forums who would appreciate Church teachings when presented appropriately.

Tim J. February 14, 2009 at 7:30 am

“Since I don’t know what you mean by “cancer”… ”
If true, that is a problem. But I see from your next post that you have “dealt with cancer in loved ones” (as have I), so you must actually have *some* idea what I am talking about. Can we all just agree to use the word “cancer” according to its commonly understood meaning, and skip hauling out JAMA articles trying to tease out a scientifically precise definition?
Incidentally, nowhere did I mock your (or anyone’s) attitude to cancer. I used cancer by way of an analogy to give some sense of what I believe to be your attitude toward Catholics, especially on this blog (nowhere did I claim to be an Augustinian scholar, either. I don’t claim to be a scholar of any kind).
My whole point regarding the cancer forum was (as Me has expressed) that one can make perfectly factually true statements in ways and at times that are unhelpful, confusing or even hurtful. Explaining, afterward, your statement’s high level of factual correctness does not address the problem, which is one of underlying antagonism.
I have not disputed anything you have said about the nature of transcendentals, being, goodness or anything else. How could I? You are *factually* correct, as far as it goes. I believe SDG’s statement stands;
“The fact that a prima facie outrageous and offensive statement can be subject to a legitimate interpretation doesn’t change the fact that it is prima facie outrageous and offensive. One could make a semantic defense for the assertion “Jesus is not God” actually having an orthodox sense within Catholic teaching, but it remains prima facie heretical from a Catholic viewpoint. ”
What astonishes is not your level of knowledge, but how little good it seems to do you. I’m certain that I normally walk around with all kinds of inexact theological categories banging around in my mind, as have the huge majority of Christians (and humans, for that matter) through history. I do, at least, have some sense of everything I *don’t* know. Knowing more theology than I do is nothing to put on your resume, I’m afraid. Practically everyone knows more theology than I do (well, shockingly, there are many who know less). Satan, I understand, *knows* more than any of us.
But the Christian faith is not a theology test. It isn’t a matter of how much you know, but of how you respond to the knowledge you have. I trust in God. Everything else is gravy. With faith in God, even a little knowledge helps. Without faith in God, no amount of knowledge will help. I’d rather have the meat with no gravy than have a tanker truck full of gravy with no meat.
I do not have, however, as simplistic a view of reality as you attribute to me in saying that I must believe that some things are “good” and some are “evil”, because I hold that Satan is evil, or because I hold that you were, in fact, up to mischief when you said he is good.
It will all depend on what one means by “things”. Objects are not evil. “Stuff” is not evil. God looked at everything he had made (which is everything) and said “behold, it is good.” As Chesterton put it, “there are no bad things, only bad intentions”.
Is an intention a “thing”? Is a situation a “thing”?
You once before, I believe, accused me of drifting into heresy when I expressed my childlike belief that Jesus’ resurrection was a real “physical” event, saying that a physical understanding of the resurrection could only mean “resuscitation” or “reanimation” and that both of these were considered heretical beliefs (as if my statement meant I *must* accept that Jesus was either not quite dead, or that he was merely reanimated like a zombie).
You imlied that Jesus’ resurrection body was only spiritual and that those who saw him after his resurrection saw him only in a spiritual sense. I – though I’m no scholar – believe the clear and obvious teaching of the Church rejects this.
If Jesus’ resurrection were simply spiritual, how is it that the empty tomb was repeatedly offered in scripture as evidence of this miraculous event? How is it that Thomas touched Jesus’ wounds? How is it, indeed that we explain Jesus’ post resurrection statement “A ghost does not have flesh and blood, as you see I have”? Was he being deceptive with that statement?
Jesus’ body – the one he had here walking around on the earth – was really and truly resurrected – “raised up” and brought back to life, but it was also *changed*, as St. Paul said we all will be “in the twinkling of an eye”. Jesus glorified body is the same body that was nailed to the cross, though it is not the same as it was.
A lot turns on the word “same”, which can be used in different senses. It is the same body. But it has been changed, it is not the same as it was. It is important to emphasize, though, that it is *more* than it was, and not less.
This is one of those doctrines of the Church that faithful Catholic pew-sitters have not had educated out of them. Many people may have a LOT more education in theology than I do, but anyone who has come to disbelieve in the historical, physical aspects of our faith (real, physical miracles) has seen more harm than good from his/her education.

(z)(~GOOD(z) -> (x)(y)(x=y)) February 14, 2009 at 2:16 pm

OK, since Tim is bringing up Satan now, I presume it is OK to talk about him. Tim, first of all SDG, is right to say that the prima facie meaning of “Jesus is not God” is heretical (I could quibble with this, but let’s grant it). But he is absolutely wrong to say that the prima facie meaning of “Satan is good” is heretical. It is rather the prima facie meaning of “It is not the case that Satan is good” that is heretical. There is no proper sense of good in Catholic philosophy whatsoever by which it can be said that “Satan is good” is a heretical statement or that “Satan is good” is a false statement or that the negation of “Satan is good” is a true statement. And frankly, I doubt that Jimmy Akin would share such a view, what SDG has communicated notwithstanding.
Now as regards my “resume” … you seem to think that SDG has more theological education or philosophical education on these matters even though he called “nonsensical” and “bogus” the doctrine of the transcendentals. This is not some arcane doctrine. This is something that any scholar of medieval philosophical theology would know of as would any scholar of the history of ancient philosophy and/or medieval philosophy. You seem to think that I had this idea that being more educated than you was some great thing to boast about. Tim, before I visited this blog, I had no idea who you even were and I still have no idea who you are except that you are trying to sell artwork. I have studied art and aesthetics and your name never came up in the literature. I’ve also met artists whose work is featured in museums and they’ve never mentioned you. Maybe you are some big shot (analagous to the big shots of MIT that a Masked Chicken likes to name drop … by saying he knows someone whom some big shots of MIT knows of… then we learn that he went to some state school in Ohio … FWIW, I have not just had x-degrees of separation with “Big Shots” (why do people on this blog care so much about this … Roger Ebert, “I can name bishops!”, “I had this conversation with a Cardinal!” … big whoop), but have studied under, with and worked with big shots … like people who at one time or another had an institutional affiliation with the likes of MIT, Caltech, Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and Oxford … if it’s celebrity that is considered “Big Shot” here then well, I could I suppose name drop not Roger Ebert but some of the A-list celebrities he covers or whose films he covers … people I have at one time or another shared living space with or broken bread with.) … Tim, my self-esteem is not based on my “resume”; it is based on the fact of God’s relationship to me which as to you is one of love, not of stardom. Do you like Jesus because he is some star and is accompanied by the glitter of angels (note how the Kingdom of Satan is said to tempt with glamor or glitter of the world)? Or do you see in Jesus, the one whom Francis spoke of as homeless. That is the glory of Christ, not a glory of the world.
Now as for the nature of sin, theologians have puzzled over that (BTW, I would advise you to not get your theology or philosophy from Chesterton … in case you didn’t realize, he is not a philosopher nor a theologian and for that matter he didn’t consider himself one; he described himself as a journalist of all things), but the physical constitution of sin as a physical thing (now this is “physical” in a sense that you are unfamiliar with) is good. But then how to explain the malice of sin? Well, that is a whole separate topic, but the Augustinian response which you claim to be familiar with is that the malice of sin has no ontological reality. And this is the doctrine of the Church.
BTW, Tim, in your citation of “Me” perhaps you are unaware that it is probable that “Me” is “B’Art” etc. In any case “Me” is clearly a troll and as for me I will no longer be responding to “Me.” If he isn’t the troll “B’Art” then it is probable that he is the troll that spoke of Avery Dulles’ out of context quotation that dissent should be “rare”, assuming — as I do — the two trolls are distinct entities.
Now you bring up a totally unrelated subject of the Resurrection and totally misrepresent my views on this. You either have a terrible memory (possible) or you are deliberately doing this (probable — and by “probable” I don’t mean “50+%” — probable just means that it has a substantial probability — now this is a non “prima facie” sense of probable, but the original controversy does not involve some non prima facie sense of “good” — there is again no authentic Catholic sense of “good” where by which it is proper to say that it is not the case that Satan is good — and even more clearly it is not proper in any authentic Catholic way to say that no goodness inheres in Satan,.
Anyway I have affirmed the bodily Resurrection. That is one of a number of distortions and perversions of truth you have expressed as regards my position on the Resurrection.
Let me ask you a question Tim … let’s say you die and your body is cremated (as permitted by the church). Let’s say then the next day Christ returns and he resurrects you. And let’s say here you are in your new “spiritual body” — which is very much a body in and through which you express your soul. Let’s suppose that it also involves your ability to touch and to feel touch. Now let’s suppose though that the cremated ashes still remain. Would that be possible? Well, in itself, yes. However there is the matter of how not just your body but every bodily thing, including inanimate things like ashes or stars will be transfigured in the new creation. So your ashes might be in some way transfigured. But need God reconstitute your resurrected body from those ashes, from the particles that make up those ashes? Not at all. In fact this confusion as to what the doctrine of the resurrection entails is a good argument for not just permitting but mandating cremation (as well as the environmental issues of sustainability).
Now let’s adjust that and suppose you didn’t cremate yourself. Let’s say your corpse lies in the grave for many years and decomposes. Let’s say Jesus returns and resurrects you. Does he have to form the resurrected, spiritual body from that decomposed corpse remains? No. The lack of cremation doesn’t change anything. The analysis is the same as above.
Now apply this to Jesus case. You seem to be of the impression that I expressed belief only in a non-bodily resurrection even though I repeatedly clarified to you that that was not the case. As I have said before, I simply do not believe that God needs to constituted the resurrected spiritual body of Jesus from the remains of Jesus. Now, to be fair, this may have a wrinkle of tension with some traditional theology that says some bizarre things about the nature of Jesus’ remains after his death (how certain unusual things were true of the remains that would normally not be true of other human remains). But it is in no way contrary to the dogma of the Resurrection itself.
Anyway, I’m sorry if you felt slighted by my statement on “education.” It was sincerely meant as a compliment.
I am often multi-tasking when writing here. I’ll try to – and I urge others to also join me in this – reflect for at least a moment and ask myself: “How can I most prudently in charity write this” whenever I write something here.
BTW, the thing you are trying to conceptualize as regards “same body” is numerical identity versus qualitative identity. Now if one supposes that numerical identity of body supervenes on numerical identity of the person bearing it, then it is certain that the resurrected spiritual body and the present body are numerically identical, though qualitiatively not identical. If one supposes that numerical identity of body does not so supervene and that there is some other necessary condition by which a body is numerically identitical with itself, then I’m not sure what that other necessary condition would be or what would comprise the set of conditions sufficient for such numerical identity — while squaring it with the issues I raised as regard it being possible for God to in some cases constitute resurrected bodies from material not numerical identical with the present body. Even in the present body, the compositional elements do not retain numerical identity. One could say the material as a whole retains numerical identity, but one need not do so if one were to suppose that the numerical identity of one’s body does not entail numerical identity of the material of its constitution.

(z)(~GOOD(z) -> (x)(y)(x=y)) February 14, 2009 at 2:16 pm

OK, since Tim is bringing up Satan now, I presume it is OK to talk about him. Tim, first of all SDG, is right to say that the prima facie meaning of “Jesus is not God” is heretical (I could quibble with this, but let’s grant it). But he is absolutely wrong to say that the prima facie meaning of “Satan is good” is heretical. It is rather the prima facie meaning of “It is not the case that Satan is good” that is heretical. There is no proper sense of good in Catholic philosophy whatsoever by which it can be said that “Satan is good” is a heretical statement or that “Satan is good” is a false statement or that the negation of “Satan is good” is a true statement. And frankly, I doubt that Jimmy Akin would share such a view, what SDG has communicated notwithstanding.
Now as regards my “resume” … you seem to think that SDG has more theological education or philosophical education on these matters even though he called “nonsensical” and “bogus” the doctrine of the transcendentals. This is not some arcane doctrine. This is something that any scholar of medieval philosophical theology would know of as would any scholar of the history of ancient philosophy and/or medieval philosophy. You seem to think that I had this idea that being more educated than you was some great thing to boast about. Tim, before I visited this blog, I had no idea who you even were and I still have no idea who you are except that you are trying to sell artwork. I have studied art and aesthetics and your name never came up in the literature. I’ve also met artists whose work is featured in museums and they’ve never mentioned you. Maybe you are some big shot (analagous to the big shots of MIT that a Masked Chicken likes to name drop … by saying he knows someone whom some big shots of MIT knows of… then we learn that he went to some state school in Ohio … FWIW, I have not just had x-degrees of separation with “Big Shots” (why do people on this blog care so much about this … Roger Ebert, “I can name bishops!”, “I had this conversation with a Cardinal!” … big whoop), but have studied under, with and worked with big shots … like people who at one time or another had an institutional affiliation with the likes of MIT, Caltech, Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and Oxford … if it’s celebrity that is considered “Big Shot” here then well, I could I suppose name drop not Roger Ebert but some of the A-list celebrities he covers or whose films he covers … people I have at one time or another shared living space with or broken bread with.) … Tim, my self-esteem is not based on my “resume”; it is based on the fact of God’s relationship to me which as to you is one of love, not of stardom. Do you like Jesus because he is some star and is accompanied by the glitter of angels (note how the Kingdom of Satan is said to tempt with glamor or glitter of the world)? Or do you see in Jesus, the one whom Francis spoke of as homeless. That is the glory of Christ, not a glory of the world.
Now as for the nature of sin, theologians have puzzled over that (BTW, I would advise you to not get your theology or philosophy from Chesterton … in case you didn’t realize, he is not a philosopher nor a theologian and for that matter he didn’t consider himself one; he described himself as a journalist of all things), but the physical constitution of sin as a physical thing (now this is “physical” in a sense that you are unfamiliar with) is good. But then how to explain the malice of sin? Well, that is a whole separate topic, but the Augustinian response which you claim to be familiar with is that the malice of sin has no ontological reality. And this is the doctrine of the Church.
BTW, Tim, in your citation of “Me” perhaps you are unaware that it is probable that “Me” is “B’Art” etc. In any case “Me” is clearly a troll and as for me I will no longer be responding to “Me.” If he isn’t the troll “B’Art” then it is probable that he is the troll that spoke of Avery Dulles’ out of context quotation that dissent should be “rare”, assuming — as I do — the two trolls are distinct entities.
Now you bring up a totally unrelated subject of the Resurrection and totally misrepresent my views on this. You either have a terrible memory (possible) or you are deliberately doing this (probable — and by “probable” I don’t mean “50+%” — probable just means that it has a substantial probability — now this is a non “prima facie” sense of probable, but the original controversy does not involve some non prima facie sense of “good” — there is again no authentic Catholic sense of “good” where by which it is proper to say that it is not the case that Satan is good — and even more clearly it is not proper in any authentic Catholic way to say that no goodness inheres in Satan,.
Anyway I have affirmed the bodily Resurrection. That is one of a number of distortions and perversions of truth you have expressed as regards my position on the Resurrection.
Let me ask you a question Tim … let’s say you die and your body is cremated (as permitted by the church). Let’s say then the next day Christ returns and he resurrects you. And let’s say here you are in your new “spiritual body” — which is very much a body in and through which you express your soul. Let’s suppose that it also involves your ability to touch and to feel touch. Now let’s suppose though that the cremated ashes still remain. Would that be possible? Well, in itself, yes. However there is the matter of how not just your body but every bodily thing, including inanimate things like ashes or stars will be transfigured in the new creation. So your ashes might be in some way transfigured. But need God reconstitute your resurrected body from those ashes, from the particles that make up those ashes? Not at all. In fact this confusion as to what the doctrine of the resurrection entails is a good argument for not just permitting but mandating cremation (as well as the environmental issues of sustainability).
Now let’s adjust that and suppose you didn’t cremate yourself. Let’s say your corpse lies in the grave for many years and decomposes. Let’s say Jesus returns and resurrects you. Does he have to form the resurrected, spiritual body from that decomposed corpse remains? No. The lack of cremation doesn’t change anything. The analysis is the same as above.
Now apply this to Jesus case. You seem to be of the impression that I expressed belief only in a non-bodily resurrection even though I repeatedly clarified to you that that was not the case. As I have said before, I simply do not believe that God needs to constituted the resurrected spiritual body of Jesus from the remains of Jesus. Now, to be fair, this may have a wrinkle of tension with some traditional theology that says some bizarre things about the nature of Jesus’ remains after his death (how certain unusual things were true of the remains that would normally not be true of other human remains). But it is in no way contrary to the dogma of the Resurrection itself.
Anyway, I’m sorry if you felt slighted by my statement on “education.” It was sincerely meant as a compliment.
I am often multi-tasking when writing here. I’ll try to – and I urge others to also join me in this – reflect for at least a moment and ask myself: “How can I most prudently in charity write this” whenever I write something here.
BTW, the thing you are trying to conceptualize as regards “same body” is numerical identity versus qualitative identity. Now if one supposes that numerical identity of body supervenes on numerical identity of the person bearing it, then it is certain that the resurrected spiritual body and the present body are numerically identical, though qualitiatively not identical. If one supposes that numerical identity of body does not so supervene and that there is some other necessary condition by which a body is numerically identitical with itself, then I’m not sure what that other necessary condition would be or what would comprise the set of conditions sufficient for such numerical identity — while squaring it with the issues I raised as regard it being possible for God to in some cases constitute resurrected bodies from material not numerical identical with the present body. Even in the present body, the compositional elements do not retain numerical identity. One could say the material as a whole retains numerical identity, but one need not do so if one were to suppose that the numerical identity of one’s body does not entail numerical identity of the material of its constitution.

(z)(~GOOD(z) -> (x)(y)(x=y)) February 14, 2009 at 2:16 pm

OK, since Tim is bringing up Satan now, I presume it is OK to talk about him. Tim, first of all SDG, is right to say that the prima facie meaning of “Jesus is not God” is heretical (I could quibble with this, but let’s grant it). But he is absolutely wrong to say that the prima facie meaning of “Satan is good” is heretical. It is rather the prima facie meaning of “It is not the case that Satan is good” that is heretical. There is no proper sense of good in Catholic philosophy whatsoever by which it can be said that “Satan is good” is a heretical statement or that “Satan is good” is a false statement or that the negation of “Satan is good” is a true statement. And frankly, I doubt that Jimmy Akin would share such a view, what SDG has communicated notwithstanding.
Now as regards my “resume” … you seem to think that SDG has more theological education or philosophical education on these matters even though he called “nonsensical” and “bogus” the doctrine of the transcendentals. This is not some arcane doctrine. This is something that any scholar of medieval philosophical theology would know of as would any scholar of the history of ancient philosophy and/or medieval philosophy. You seem to think that I had this idea that being more educated than you was some great thing to boast about. Tim, before I visited this blog, I had no idea who you even were and I still have no idea who you are except that you are trying to sell artwork. I have studied art and aesthetics and your name never came up in the literature. I’ve also met artists whose work is featured in museums and they’ve never mentioned you. Maybe you are some big shot (analagous to the big shots of MIT that a Masked Chicken likes to name drop … by saying he knows someone whom some big shots of MIT knows of… then we learn that he went to some state school in Ohio … FWIW, I have not just had x-degrees of separation with “Big Shots” (why do people on this blog care so much about this … Roger Ebert, “I can name bishops!”, “I had this conversation with a Cardinal!” … big whoop), but have studied under, with and worked with big shots … like people who at one time or another had an institutional affiliation with the likes of MIT, Caltech, Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and Oxford … if it’s celebrity that is considered “Big Shot” here then well, I could I suppose name drop not Roger Ebert but some of the A-list celebrities he covers or whose films he covers … people I have at one time or another shared living space with or broken bread with.) … Tim, my self-esteem is not based on my “resume”; it is based on the fact of God’s relationship to me which as to you is one of love, not of stardom. Do you like Jesus because he is some star and is accompanied by the glitter of angels (note how the Kingdom of Satan is said to tempt with glamor or glitter of the world)? Or do you see in Jesus, the one whom Francis spoke of as homeless. That is the glory of Christ, not a glory of the world.
Now as for the nature of sin, theologians have puzzled over that (BTW, I would advise you to not get your theology or philosophy from Chesterton … in case you didn’t realize, he is not a philosopher nor a theologian and for that matter he didn’t consider himself one; he described himself as a journalist of all things), but the physical constitution of sin as a physical thing (now this is “physical” in a sense that you are unfamiliar with) is good. But then how to explain the malice of sin? Well, that is a whole separate topic, but the Augustinian response which you claim to be familiar with is that the malice of sin has no ontological reality. And this is the doctrine of the Church.
BTW, Tim, in your citation of “Me” perhaps you are unaware that it is probable that “Me” is “B’Art” etc. In any case “Me” is clearly a troll and as for me I will no longer be responding to “Me.” If he isn’t the troll “B’Art” then it is probable that he is the troll that spoke of Avery Dulles’ out of context quotation that dissent should be “rare”, assuming — as I do — the two trolls are distinct entities.
Now you bring up a totally unrelated subject of the Resurrection and totally misrepresent my views on this. You either have a terrible memory (possible) or you are deliberately doing this (probable — and by “probable” I don’t mean “50+%” — probable just means that it has a substantial probability — now this is a non “prima facie” sense of probable, but the original controversy does not involve some non prima facie sense of “good” — there is again no authentic Catholic sense of “good” where by which it is proper to say that it is not the case that Satan is good — and even more clearly it is not proper in any authentic Catholic way to say that no goodness inheres in Satan,.
Anyway I have affirmed the bodily Resurrection. That is one of a number of distortions and perversions of truth you have expressed as regards my position on the Resurrection.
Let me ask you a question Tim … let’s say you die and your body is cremated (as permitted by the church). Let’s say then the next day Christ returns and he resurrects you. And let’s say here you are in your new “spiritual body” — which is very much a body in and through which you express your soul. Let’s suppose that it also involves your ability to touch and to feel touch. Now let’s suppose though that the cremated ashes still remain. Would that be possible? Well, in itself, yes. However there is the matter of how not just your body but every bodily thing, including inanimate things like ashes or stars will be transfigured in the new creation. So your ashes might be in some way transfigured. But need God reconstitute your resurrected body from those ashes, from the particles that make up those ashes? Not at all. In fact this confusion as to what the doctrine of the resurrection entails is a good argument for not just permitting but mandating cremation (as well as the environmental issues of sustainability).
Now let’s adjust that and suppose you didn’t cremate yourself. Let’s say your corpse lies in the grave for many years and decomposes. Let’s say Jesus returns and resurrects you. Does he have to form the resurrected, spiritual body from that decomposed corpse remains? No. The lack of cremation doesn’t change anything. The analysis is the same as above.
Now apply this to Jesus case. You seem to be of the impression that I expressed belief only in a non-bodily resurrection even though I repeatedly clarified to you that that was not the case. As I have said before, I simply do not believe that God needs to constituted the resurrected spiritual body of Jesus from the remains of Jesus. Now, to be fair, this may have a wrinkle of tension with some traditional theology that says some bizarre things about the nature of Jesus’ remains after his death (how certain unusual things were true of the remains that would normally not be true of other human remains). But it is in no way contrary to the dogma of the Resurrection itself.
Anyway, I’m sorry if you felt slighted by my statement on “education.” It was sincerely meant as a compliment.
I am often multi-tasking when writing here. I’ll try to – and I urge others to also join me in this – reflect for at least a moment and ask myself: “How can I most prudently in charity write this” whenever I write something here.
BTW, the thing you are trying to conceptualize as regards “same body” is numerical identity versus qualitative identity. Now if one supposes that numerical identity of body supervenes on numerical identity of the person bearing it, then it is certain that the resurrected spiritual body and the present body are numerically identical, though qualitiatively not identical. If one supposes that numerical identity of body does not so supervene and that there is some other necessary condition by which a body is numerically identitical with itself, then I’m not sure what that other necessary condition would be or what would comprise the set of conditions sufficient for such numerical identity — while squaring it with the issues I raised as regard it being possible for God to in some cases constitute resurrected bodies from material not numerical identical with the present body. Even in the present body, the compositional elements do not retain numerical identity. One could say the material as a whole retains numerical identity, but one need not do so if one were to suppose that the numerical identity of one’s body does not entail numerical identity of the material of its constitution.

(x)(y)(x=y)->(z)(~z=z) February 14, 2009 at 2:46 pm

BTW, in my opinion, “Satan is good” contrary to what Tim J may “think”, has no possibility of confusion since there is no proper sense of “good” by which that statement can be said to be false, let alone as SDG suggested “heretical.” It is simply a true statement of orthodoxy which cannot be properly interpreted in any way that would not be orthodox or true.
OTOH, the statement that “the Real Presence is not a physical presence” does have a possibility of confusion and is likely to offend many Catholics (the statement “Satan is good” may offend b/c Catholics are simply ignorant of basic Catholic Philosophy 101 — i.e. they apprehend the meaning of “Satan is good” and don’t realize that Catholic doctrine affirms that meaning as true; but in the case of “the Real Presence is not a physical presence”, many Catholics may misapprehend the meaning and this misapprehension may cause the confusion and offense — so in my case the confusion and offense is but mere ignorance as to Catholic doctrine but in this case the confusion and offense can in some cases be due to well what SDG vaguely styles the “prima facie” meaning of “the Real Presence is not a physical presence).
And yet, Jimmy Akin has defended those who have said such (I don’t recall for certain if he has joined in saying the same). OTOH, others have criticized those who have said such for precisely the reasons outlined above. Still others have criticized those who have said such by saying that this is not a matter of misapprehension, but one of proper apprehension of the meaning and that the meaning itself is contrary to Catholic orthodoxy — that the Real Presence does in fact involve a physical presence (these include professional theologians who have said this, FWIW — but I am not coming on one side or the other here). In response to these latter critics, the proponents of “the Real Presence is not a physical presence” view have suggested that some of them may just be ignorant of Catholic philosophy and Catholic theology and Catholic doctrine. Sound familiar? A little except for one thing — this is something that has some actual controversy in the community of theologians. There is no theologian or philosopher that I am aware of who says that the medieval doctrine of the transcendentals does not entail that just as with any other thing and any other being, that to the extent that it is a thing, and to the extent that it has being, Satan is good, true, one, beautiful*, etc.
Now I think some are not understanding the terms here. Having “being” does not mean merely “existing” in the colloquial sense of “existing” which uses an ideology perhaps not compatible with Catholic philosophy in a total way. Let me just give one example. A man who shines in virtue has more “being” — ceteris paribus — than a man whose virtue is not so brilliant. How you say? Don’t both men equally exist? If you are asking these questions, then please, read up on all this, before daring to slam Catholic truth as heresy or Catholic philosophical doctrine as nonsensical.

(x)(y)(x=y)->(z)(~z=z) February 14, 2009 at 2:46 pm

BTW, in my opinion, “Satan is good” contrary to what Tim J may “think”, has no possibility of confusion since there is no proper sense of “good” by which that statement can be said to be false, let alone as SDG suggested “heretical.” It is simply a true statement of orthodoxy which cannot be properly interpreted in any way that would not be orthodox or true.
OTOH, the statement that “the Real Presence is not a physical presence” does have a possibility of confusion and is likely to offend many Catholics (the statement “Satan is good” may offend b/c Catholics are simply ignorant of basic Catholic Philosophy 101 — i.e. they apprehend the meaning of “Satan is good” and don’t realize that Catholic doctrine affirms that meaning as true; but in the case of “the Real Presence is not a physical presence”, many Catholics may misapprehend the meaning and this misapprehension may cause the confusion and offense — so in my case the confusion and offense is but mere ignorance as to Catholic doctrine but in this case the confusion and offense can in some cases be due to well what SDG vaguely styles the “prima facie” meaning of “the Real Presence is not a physical presence).
And yet, Jimmy Akin has defended those who have said such (I don’t recall for certain if he has joined in saying the same). OTOH, others have criticized those who have said such for precisely the reasons outlined above. Still others have criticized those who have said such by saying that this is not a matter of misapprehension, but one of proper apprehension of the meaning and that the meaning itself is contrary to Catholic orthodoxy — that the Real Presence does in fact involve a physical presence (these include professional theologians who have said this, FWIW — but I am not coming on one side or the other here). In response to these latter critics, the proponents of “the Real Presence is not a physical presence” view have suggested that some of them may just be ignorant of Catholic philosophy and Catholic theology and Catholic doctrine. Sound familiar? A little except for one thing — this is something that has some actual controversy in the community of theologians. There is no theologian or philosopher that I am aware of who says that the medieval doctrine of the transcendentals does not entail that just as with any other thing and any other being, that to the extent that it is a thing, and to the extent that it has being, Satan is good, true, one, beautiful*, etc.
Now I think some are not understanding the terms here. Having “being” does not mean merely “existing” in the colloquial sense of “existing” which uses an ideology perhaps not compatible with Catholic philosophy in a total way. Let me just give one example. A man who shines in virtue has more “being” — ceteris paribus — than a man whose virtue is not so brilliant. How you say? Don’t both men equally exist? If you are asking these questions, then please, read up on all this, before daring to slam Catholic truth as heresy or Catholic philosophical doctrine as nonsensical.

(x)(y)(x=y)->(z)(~z=z) February 14, 2009 at 2:46 pm

BTW, in my opinion, “Satan is good” contrary to what Tim J may “think”, has no possibility of confusion since there is no proper sense of “good” by which that statement can be said to be false, let alone as SDG suggested “heretical.” It is simply a true statement of orthodoxy which cannot be properly interpreted in any way that would not be orthodox or true.
OTOH, the statement that “the Real Presence is not a physical presence” does have a possibility of confusion and is likely to offend many Catholics (the statement “Satan is good” may offend b/c Catholics are simply ignorant of basic Catholic Philosophy 101 — i.e. they apprehend the meaning of “Satan is good” and don’t realize that Catholic doctrine affirms that meaning as true; but in the case of “the Real Presence is not a physical presence”, many Catholics may misapprehend the meaning and this misapprehension may cause the confusion and offense — so in my case the confusion and offense is but mere ignorance as to Catholic doctrine but in this case the confusion and offense can in some cases be due to well what SDG vaguely styles the “prima facie” meaning of “the Real Presence is not a physical presence).
And yet, Jimmy Akin has defended those who have said such (I don’t recall for certain if he has joined in saying the same). OTOH, others have criticized those who have said such for precisely the reasons outlined above. Still others have criticized those who have said such by saying that this is not a matter of misapprehension, but one of proper apprehension of the meaning and that the meaning itself is contrary to Catholic orthodoxy — that the Real Presence does in fact involve a physical presence (these include professional theologians who have said this, FWIW — but I am not coming on one side or the other here). In response to these latter critics, the proponents of “the Real Presence is not a physical presence” view have suggested that some of them may just be ignorant of Catholic philosophy and Catholic theology and Catholic doctrine. Sound familiar? A little except for one thing — this is something that has some actual controversy in the community of theologians. There is no theologian or philosopher that I am aware of who says that the medieval doctrine of the transcendentals does not entail that just as with any other thing and any other being, that to the extent that it is a thing, and to the extent that it has being, Satan is good, true, one, beautiful*, etc.
Now I think some are not understanding the terms here. Having “being” does not mean merely “existing” in the colloquial sense of “existing” which uses an ideology perhaps not compatible with Catholic philosophy in a total way. Let me just give one example. A man who shines in virtue has more “being” — ceteris paribus — than a man whose virtue is not so brilliant. How you say? Don’t both men equally exist? If you are asking these questions, then please, read up on all this, before daring to slam Catholic truth as heresy or Catholic philosophical doctrine as nonsensical.

(t)(GOOD(t)) February 14, 2009 at 2:54 pm

Just to be clear, I never said you were being heretical for saying Jesus was physically resurrected. I criticized strongly your statements regarding reanimation or resuscitation. I have no beef with the term “physical” here.

Me February 14, 2009 at 3:19 pm

it is probable that he is the troll that spoke of Avery Dulles’ out of context quotation that dissent should be “rare”
What quotation isn’t “out of context” in some sense? After all, we can’t reproduce Avery Dulles or the context of the original interview with Avery Dulles here on this forum. What we have is what we have. In February 2001, Michael Paulson of the Boston Globe interviewed Avery Dulles “at the Jesuits’ humble provincial headquarters in the South End”. Quoting from what was published of the interview:
“Q. What is the appropriate role of dissent in the church?
A. Dissent should be rare, respectful and reluctant. One’s first reaction as a Catholic is to agree with the official teaching of the church.”
Of course, going by your self-styled label of “catholic maverick” who has “left the church” and who continues to change his handle near hourly and who has persisted in discussing the forbidden subject, perhaps for you dissent is simply an everyday way of life.

Tim Jones February 14, 2009 at 6:21 pm

I did bring up Satan, so that one is on me.
That said, I find the whole paragraph beginning “Now as regards my “resume”…” inexplicable.
I’m no one of any importance, but at least you know my name.

(q)(ONE(q)) February 14, 2009 at 10:19 pm

So “Me” acknowleges he is that second troll entity I mentioned (whose distinction from the first troll entity I’ll continue to assume, but that is of no consequence here). I would encourage everyone to not feed the troll.
And just as I urge people to not get their philosophy or theology from Chesterton, I would also urge people to not imbibe the theology of Avery Dulles from a sound bite in an interview in a secular newspaper. An ounce of common sense should tell you as much, but the internet seems to remove common sense or attract those who have none.
Tim, are you criticizing me (and others?) for not telling you my name? As a victim of religious violence for my religious views and also as someone who has been subject via the Internet to the threat of violence for religious views expressed via the Internet — two facts I have made known to you previously — perhaps you would understand my reluctance to reveal my name here. SDG once criticized another individual for unlike himself and yourself not being courageous in posting with his real name and living with the consequences. But this is not not being courageous; this is being prudent. And, I think a forum should either make posting under one’s name a rule or avoid criticizing (whether it be in SDG or anyone else) someone for not doing so. One would hope that you are not tempting me to do what I know and perhaps what you know to be in my case, imprudent and thus sinful. Maybe you don’t understand the gravity of the religious violence I was victim to — I was left almost unconscious. Maybe you don’t understand the nature of the internet. Even setting aside the sentiments that are not altogether uncommon here, the nature of the world wide web is such that it is inadvisable to express views that might cause some fanatics to commit violence.
Tim, if you recall, not only did you bring up Satan, you also suggested I was using you to bolster my “resume.” I found that inexplicable and almost nonsensical. I am glad now that you acknowledge that you are no one of any importance. That is an important thing to acknowledge. Indeed, in my opinion — this is just my own opinion — no creature is anyone of any importance. In fact, again in my opinion, not even God is someone of any importance — how so? We love God not because he is important, but because he is beautiful. Beauty is a transcendental; importance is not — how is that relevant here? God is the ontological ground of all things and so only in the transcendentals is what is truly of God seen. What not all beings inherently are (goodness, unity, truth, beauty, thingness, etc. and being itself), cannot be predicated of God himself. Perhaps it could be predicated of some relation between God and man, but then that is not love (charity) for God, but something lesser. This is why the better opinion of theologians is that thanksgiving to God does not entail charity for God (and for example would not entail perfect contrition) for thanksgiving to God is not love for God as he is, but love what God has done, for God’s economy. So no creature nor God is important. Someone can be important TO something or someone and the like, but no person, divine or otherwise, is important in himself. Again, we love — or we should love — God for his beauty, not for his importance to us. The latter in fact would not be the supernatural love which is the theological virtue of charity, without which we cannot be saved. If you are inclined to read Protestants rather than the theologians of the church, then I would suggest John Piper and his book “Desiring God” as a place to start; I do so without endorsing the book’s content.
A forum should be a place to be enlightened and to enlighten, not a place of verbal gamesmanship. With respect, Tim, in my opinion, an opinion you have said of me at times, I think some of what you write has trollish intent (I wouldn’t say you are in toto a troll as the other person is). By “trollish intent” I mean writing something not to be enlightened or to enlighten or to commiserate etc, but to garner some kind of reaction in someone that one relishes. You knew that your comment “At least you know my name” would garner a reaction in either myself or in those reading so as to improve the way you appear or to degrade the way I appear. But that is not what a forum is about. It is not a contest of childishness (and adjective a Mattheus above said of me). I am sure you are or will shortly be aware of what the linguistic history of the word “forum” includes.
If I may Tim, without speaking of any content, speak about how I have understood your reaction to some things — and maybe my understanding is totally wrong. Anyhow, I am reminded of a recent dispute between a Bill O’Reilly and a Jessica Alba. Alba spoke of being Swedish or going Sweden as in being neutral or going neutral on a certain matter. O’Reilly later criticized Alba as ignorant, saying she must have been thinking of Switzerland. Later, Alba said that actually it is O’Reilly who is ignorant since Sweden was neutral in WWII. Some folks have suggested that Alba actually did mean to say Switzerland and she just was lucky that Sweden also has some history of neutrality and that Alba must have looked the matter up before responding to O’Reilly. I get the feeling that (1) your reference to Augustine was akin to what some critics allege to have been true in Alba’s case and (2) just as in this exchange involving O’Reilly and Alba, that our exchange did not succeed in fostering serious reflection upon truth. Perhaps I am wrong, especially on (2), and perhaps the recommendations I have made will not be shrugged aside. FWIW, I took it upon myself to follow up on a recommendation you made of a certain book. I would recommend in turn for persons who believe it imprudent (and thus sinful) to look at swimsuit magazines as that one excellent defender of the objective nature of beauty so believed, to avoid watching Fox News where such images abound (images from Playboy Mexico, including from the too racy for cover display pictorial of a Maria alleged to be a portrayal of the Virgin; in the last Fox News Watch, one of the segments was focused visually on the swimsuit edition of SI and they played imagery/video from it throughout the whole program as a tease;… in fact Fox News has come under criticism from some feminist quarters for allegedly marketing sex in this way). A better alternative at least in my experience would be MSNBC which does not seem to feature these elements with the frequency seen on Fox News. Of course, if one’s political loyalty trumps all or if one like myself sees these things as innocuous, then this would not apply.

Vq(GOOD(q)) February 14, 2009 at 10:38 pm

It’s occurred to me that I may have misinterpreted you Tim and that your statement “At least you know my name” was your gentle criticism or expression of sorrow for some things received by you as harsh such as my statement regarding your name never coming up in my art and aesthetics study etc. I did engage in some hyperbolic statements there and if your statement was in reaction to those statements, I am sorry that I may have gone too far to highlight the theological point I was attempting to make and which I made explicit in my last post. Regardless, I am sorry that as seems to be the case, I was too harsh and as is the case, I was imprudent in not being reflective of the possibility of excessive harshness there. In addition, if I misinterpreted you, I apologize for that as well.
I also thank you for your acknowledgment as regards to your bringing up of a subject as being on you.

~/\r(~TRUE(r)) February 14, 2009 at 11:22 pm

It would appear that SDG has also recognized “Me” as a troll, if I am interpreting his statement in another thread correctly. FWIW, much of the content and style of “Me” mirrors the content and style of that second troll entity I referred to. In fact some of it is so similar that a coincidence seems unlikely (and this is not a mere coincidence of a term such as “false flag” — which btw, is not something that “conspiracy theorists” exclusively use and which a “MaryC” as well as an “Eric” as well as myself have all used on this blog antecedent to The Masked Chicken’s judgment of statistical wisdom — somehow the idea that a doctorate possessing academic was nescient even of the definition of the term “false flag” or its usage or its common occurence is rather scary … I mean, I think I personally knew of its meaning or would have at least deduced its meaning from at least the 7th grade … and considering that The Masked Chicken berated someone else’s education in history while maintaining that his beration was not arrogance but frustration and mentioning that he has studied history and cultural studies on a PhD level, one wonders how he is ignorant of these basic facts of history (not the “conspiracy theory” kind, but those acknowledged by all):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_flag
I also wonder how someone who seems to advance his knowledge of statistics as well as psychology, even neuropsychology, would be nescient of how IQ scores of different tests (for example WAIS versus S-B) do not map to the same standard deviation scaling. For ex. 140 on the WAIS and 140 on the S-B are not comparable scores, i.e not equivalent — the former maps to a greater standard deviation (and percentile) than the latter. [unrelated note: And who knows what standard deviation mapping might be in use on Internet tests, or what measures of validity they might psychometrically satisfy]
Why I am I mentioning some of this? I recall that on one occasion — and undoubtedly others I do not recall or am in cognizance of — someone who shall go unnamed — seemed to cite The Masked Chicken as an authority. I recall more vaguely, that happening on other occasions with another someone of the same Masked Chicken. Now I have nothing against The Masked Chicken, but I do have something against people seemingly having this misplaced confidence in his abilities or sagacity. Ahh yes! I recall now in one case one person even begged The Masked Chicken to comment on some matter, to start a blog, to email him, and/or some such. Perhaps the humility envinced by Scott Hahn’s reluctance once on the radio to mention his opinion on a matter for fear that people would give undue weight to it, noting that people already give undue weight to his opinions and have undue devotion to his person, is something we should emulate.
I hope that my objective here has been clear. I appreciate much of what The Masked Chicken writes and my comments are meant not to asperse but to inspire people to what I believe would be a more healthy way of forming opinions, discoursing and so forth. Any appeal to authority should be examined with caution; I have not made appeals to authority of myself. I have referred only, in this thread, to the standard philosophical and theological literature Catholic and have cited a specific book with page number and publisher above. I seem to recall someone suggesting the same was true of Jimmy Akin in a thread about soup containing meat, saying that an appeal to the authority of EWTN or Colin Donovan, STL, was out of place and that Akin had sourced his argument. In my case not only did I source it, but there is to my knowledge not even a dispute here in the academic community (unlike there might have been in the other case involving meat soup)
In the midst of our prayers for the SSPX let us also pray for all those estranged from the church, including sede vacantists. I would ask especially for prayers for Gerry Matatics, who was formerlly affiliated with Catholic Answers, but who is, last I heard, a sede vacantist. Let us pray especially that personal reconciliation may take place in his life and that God may bless him in abundance in his life.

Tim J. February 15, 2009 at 11:34 am

“you also suggested I was using you to bolster my “resume.”…”
I did nothing of the kind. I was merely pointing out that being more educated than I am is a very common condition, and not one in which to take any comfort or place any special confidence.
My professional credentials (as well as other things) are available for anyone to see. In my view, though, the most valuable aspects of my education have not been received in any formal institutional setting.
“Tim, are you criticizing me (and others?) for not telling you my name?”
Not at all, merely pointing out that my life is a more or less open book, and so it would be strange if I were to pretend to be “someone of importance”.
“I am glad now that you acknowledge that you are no one of any importance. That is an important thing to acknowledge.”
That’s pretty hilarious, as I have never claimed to be anything else. I also find it a little odd that you find my lack of importance “an important thing to acknowledge”, especially since “no creature is anyone of any importance.”.
“We love God not because he is important, but because he is beautiful.”
No, that would mean that we love God in the same way that we love any other beautiful thing, only to a greater degree.
A creature may be beautiful, God *is* beauty, and the source of all beauty, he is not one beautiful thing among others, or simply The Most Beautiful Thing (and so worthy of our notice and affection). But I understand that you enjoy floating statements like “not even God is someone of any importance” and seeing what kind of reaction you can get.
I have no knowledge of any tiff anyone may have had with either Bill O’Reilly or Jessica Alba, and so I will not comment. I don’t watch much television.
“With respect, Tim, in my opinion, an opinion you have said of me at times, I think some of what you write has trollish intent (I wouldn’t say you are in toto a troll as the other person is). By “trollish intent” I mean writing something not to be enlightened or to enlighten or to commiserate etc, but to garner some kind of reaction in someone that one relishes.”
Deliciously ironic.

Matt McDonald February 15, 2009 at 11:37 am

troll,
I have referred only, in this thread, to the standard philosophical and theological literature Catholic and have cited a specific book with page number and publisher above.
You have not quoted ANY primary or authoritative sources. If your understanding of Catholic philosophy is widely held then quote from Aquinas, the Catechism, or some other source which could be considered primary.
Matt
ps. invoking a name and attributing a paraphrased idea doesn’t make a citation.

Tim J. February 15, 2009 at 11:41 am

BTW, I thought of you this morning at Mass, and for a moment wished you were standing beside me, as we all repeated our Baptismal vows;
“Do you reject Satan and all his works?”
“We do”
To (late as it is) get back to an earlier comment you made in this thread, I heard someone on the radio a couple of nights ago who certainly believes in a conspiracy of demons and in the reality of our enmity with Satan… Fr. Benedict Groeschel.
Is he a reactionary fundamentalist?

(m)(S)(GOOD(S) GOOD(m)) February 15, 2009 at 2:38 pm

I don’t have any wish to discourse with those rude or those whom St. Teresa of Avila identified as being for reasons of the lack of a certain virtue able to be aptly described in the way that in our own time Catholic priest Hans Kung has recently described Benedict XVI in relation to the SSPX and related affairs. [I am assuming that the rude individual is an adult; if he is a child, then his actions may be understood in a different light.] Fr Kung, unlike the SSPX Catholic bishops and priests, is able to celebrate Mass, give homilies, hear confessions and the like. Maybe when I doubted infallibility and this was addressed by a confessor in a certain way, I instead had somehow had Fr Kung as a confessor then, my spiritual life and journey would have progressed differently. Hopefully, just as Benedict met for an extended period of time with Fr Kung near the beginning of his pontificate, Benedict will turn again to Fr Kung in friendship and Fr Kung can again in a more personal setting offer his sage advise to Fr Kung’s servant (for that is what the pope purportedly is, Fr Kung’s servant as well as every other Catholic’s servant).
Tim, I find your explanation there for something hard to square with what you wrote, but I will nevertheless accept it and retract what no longer would apply given it.
Tim, in reference to God being beauty versus God being beautiful, you are incorrect on several points. First of all, saying God is beautiful does not exclude that God is beauty or the source of all beauty (and all being, goodness, etc — remember the transcendentals are all but notionally different — every being is good to the extent that it is being, and every good is being to the extent that it is good, etc.). We can see this reflected in the magisterium which speaks of God as beauty as goodness as truth, but also says of God that he is beautiful and good, etc. But this is not infallible doctrine. As I’ve mentioned some schools of thought in Catholic tradition maintain that no predicate of our conception can be properly applied to God. So we cannot say that God is good or that he is goodness, etc. According to this school of thought, we cannot even say properly speaking that God exists or is being or has being (nor can we say that God does not exist or is not being or has not being). This school of thought, basically stresses the ineffability of God. Perhaps you are somehow straddling these two schools and want to say that we cannot speak of how God is good, beautiful, etc. (even though the magisterium speaks in this way at times, including in the Catechism, the pontificate of John Paul II, etc.) but that we can speak of how God is goodness, beauty, etc. That’s somewhat unusual, but fine. Personally, I am attracted more to the notion that God is absolutely ineffable. However, as a practical matter we need to speak of God even in expressing the fact of his absolute ineffability — so our expression of God’s ineffability is also inadequate … i.e. God cannot be said to be ineffable nor effable. That is one extreme of this Catholic school of thought I mentioned. A lesser extreme would say that we can speak of God only negatively — i.e. we know not anything whatsoever about what God “is” only what God “is not.” This school of thought is mentioned in the Catechism, but as I’ve mentioned the Catechism sides with the Thomistic school. Anyhow, as a practical matter, in worship we also need to speak of God in some way to give vehicle to the expression of love for God of which love, regardless of how we may know not of, we at least feel in the depths of our heart and being. So my statement “God is beautiful” is in that light and for your purposes (which I’ll assume this addresses), it is one that is present in the magisterium for example here:
http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/ccatheduc/documents/rc_con_ccatheduc_doc_13021998_new-vocations_en.html
verbatim in that case as it so happens.
I’m not sure what to make of this but a troll later identified (I assume accurately) by SDG to be “B’Art” also on at least one occasion ended his post with “Signed, Me” though at that time I don’t think the handle in employ was “Me.” This could mean that the two troll entities I referred to are one and the same entity. It could also mean that one of the two is attempting to copy aspects of the other. It would not appear to be a coincidence since the content/style of “Me” not just in this thread has similarities remarkable with both entities. In any event I would strongly urge people to follow my and SDG’s example in not feeding this troll, though always in openness to the God who cannot in theological charity be loved for his importance but only for his goodness, truth, and beauty, for who he is in himself, even though according to one school, we know absolutely nothing of what God is, only what God is not, and according to Catholic doctrine, we do not have comprehension of who God is in himself and that any knowledge that we may in any sense have of God is always, at least this side of heaven, mediated through a creature (that’s what purportedly distinguishes according to standard interpretations the beatific vision from anything else, it is purported to by some to be a vision of God unmediated by any creature without of course annihilating the creature or assimilating the creature into God)

(m)(S)(GOOD(S) GOOD(m)) February 15, 2009 at 2:38 pm

I don’t have any wish to discourse with those rude or those whom St. Teresa of Avila identified as being for reasons of the lack of a certain virtue able to be aptly described in the way that in our own time Catholic priest Hans Kung has recently described Benedict XVI in relation to the SSPX and related affairs. [I am assuming that the rude individual is an adult; if he is a child, then his actions may be understood in a different light.] Fr Kung, unlike the SSPX Catholic bishops and priests, is able to celebrate Mass, give homilies, hear confessions and the like. Maybe when I doubted infallibility and this was addressed by a confessor in a certain way, I instead had somehow had Fr Kung as a confessor then, my spiritual life and journey would have progressed differently. Hopefully, just as Benedict met for an extended period of time with Fr Kung near the beginning of his pontificate, Benedict will turn again to Fr Kung in friendship and Fr Kung can again in a more personal setting offer his sage advise to Fr Kung’s servant (for that is what the pope purportedly is, Fr Kung’s servant as well as every other Catholic’s servant).
Tim, I find your explanation there for something hard to square with what you wrote, but I will nevertheless accept it and retract what no longer would apply given it.
Tim, in reference to God being beauty versus God being beautiful, you are incorrect on several points. First of all, saying God is beautiful does not exclude that God is beauty or the source of all beauty (and all being, goodness, etc — remember the transcendentals are all but notionally different — every being is good to the extent that it is being, and every good is being to the extent that it is good, etc.). We can see this reflected in the magisterium which speaks of God as beauty as goodness as truth, but also says of God that he is beautiful and good, etc. But this is not infallible doctrine. As I’ve mentioned some schools of thought in Catholic tradition maintain that no predicate of our conception can be properly applied to God. So we cannot say that God is good or that he is goodness, etc. According to this school of thought, we cannot even say properly speaking that God exists or is being or has being (nor can we say that God does not exist or is not being or has not being). This school of thought, basically stresses the ineffability of God. Perhaps you are somehow straddling these two schools and want to say that we cannot speak of how God is good, beautiful, etc. (even though the magisterium speaks in this way at times, including in the Catechism, the pontificate of John Paul II, etc.) but that we can speak of how God is goodness, beauty, etc. That’s somewhat unusual, but fine. Personally, I am attracted more to the notion that God is absolutely ineffable. However, as a practical matter we need to speak of God even in expressing the fact of his absolute ineffability — so our expression of God’s ineffability is also inadequate … i.e. God cannot be said to be ineffable nor effable. That is one extreme of this Catholic school of thought I mentioned. A lesser extreme would say that we can speak of God only negatively — i.e. we know not anything whatsoever about what God “is” only what God “is not.” This school of thought is mentioned in the Catechism, but as I’ve mentioned the Catechism sides with the Thomistic school. Anyhow, as a practical matter, in worship we also need to speak of God in some way to give vehicle to the expression of love for God of which love, regardless of how we may know not of, we at least feel in the depths of our heart and being. So my statement “God is beautiful” is in that light and for your purposes (which I’ll assume this addresses), it is one that is present in the magisterium for example here:
http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/ccatheduc/documents/rc_con_ccatheduc_doc_13021998_new-vocations_en.html
verbatim in that case as it so happens.
I’m not sure what to make of this but a troll later identified (I assume accurately) by SDG to be “B’Art” also on at least one occasion ended his post with “Signed, Me” though at that time I don’t think the handle in employ was “Me.” This could mean that the two troll entities I referred to are one and the same entity. It could also mean that one of the two is attempting to copy aspects of the other. It would not appear to be a coincidence since the content/style of “Me” not just in this thread has similarities remarkable with both entities. In any event I would strongly urge people to follow my and SDG’s example in not feeding this troll, though always in openness to the God who cannot in theological charity be loved for his importance but only for his goodness, truth, and beauty, for who he is in himself, even though according to one school, we know absolutely nothing of what God is, only what God is not, and according to Catholic doctrine, we do not have comprehension of who God is in himself and that any knowledge that we may in any sense have of God is always, at least this side of heaven, mediated through a creature (that’s what purportedly distinguishes according to standard interpretations the beatific vision from anything else, it is purported to by some to be a vision of God unmediated by any creature without of course annihilating the creature or assimilating the creature into God)

(m)(S)(GOOD(S) GOOD(m)) February 15, 2009 at 2:38 pm

I don’t have any wish to discourse with those rude or those whom St. Teresa of Avila identified as being for reasons of the lack of a certain virtue able to be aptly described in the way that in our own time Catholic priest Hans Kung has recently described Benedict XVI in relation to the SSPX and related affairs. [I am assuming that the rude individual is an adult; if he is a child, then his actions may be understood in a different light.] Fr Kung, unlike the SSPX Catholic bishops and priests, is able to celebrate Mass, give homilies, hear confessions and the like. Maybe when I doubted infallibility and this was addressed by a confessor in a certain way, I instead had somehow had Fr Kung as a confessor then, my spiritual life and journey would have progressed differently. Hopefully, just as Benedict met for an extended period of time with Fr Kung near the beginning of his pontificate, Benedict will turn again to Fr Kung in friendship and Fr Kung can again in a more personal setting offer his sage advise to Fr Kung’s servant (for that is what the pope purportedly is, Fr Kung’s servant as well as every other Catholic’s servant).
Tim, I find your explanation there for something hard to square with what you wrote, but I will nevertheless accept it and retract what no longer would apply given it.
Tim, in reference to God being beauty versus God being beautiful, you are incorrect on several points. First of all, saying God is beautiful does not exclude that God is beauty or the source of all beauty (and all being, goodness, etc — remember the transcendentals are all but notionally different — every being is good to the extent that it is being, and every good is being to the extent that it is good, etc.). We can see this reflected in the magisterium which speaks of God as beauty as goodness as truth, but also says of God that he is beautiful and good, etc. But this is not infallible doctrine. As I’ve mentioned some schools of thought in Catholic tradition maintain that no predicate of our conception can be properly applied to God. So we cannot say that God is good or that he is goodness, etc. According to this school of thought, we cannot even say properly speaking that God exists or is being or has being (nor can we say that God does not exist or is not being or has not being). This school of thought, basically stresses the ineffability of God. Perhaps you are somehow straddling these two schools and want to say that we cannot speak of how God is good, beautiful, etc. (even though the magisterium speaks in this way at times, including in the Catechism, the pontificate of John Paul II, etc.) but that we can speak of how God is goodness, beauty, etc. That’s somewhat unusual, but fine. Personally, I am attracted more to the notion that God is absolutely ineffable. However, as a practical matter we need to speak of God even in expressing the fact of his absolute ineffability — so our expression of God’s ineffability is also inadequate … i.e. God cannot be said to be ineffable nor effable. That is one extreme of this Catholic school of thought I mentioned. A lesser extreme would say that we can speak of God only negatively — i.e. we know not anything whatsoever about what God “is” only what God “is not.” This school of thought is mentioned in the Catechism, but as I’ve mentioned the Catechism sides with the Thomistic school. Anyhow, as a practical matter, in worship we also need to speak of God in some way to give vehicle to the expression of love for God of which love, regardless of how we may know not of, we at least feel in the depths of our heart and being. So my statement “God is beautiful” is in that light and for your purposes (which I’ll assume this addresses), it is one that is present in the magisterium for example here:
http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/ccatheduc/documents/rc_con_ccatheduc_doc_13021998_new-vocations_en.html
verbatim in that case as it so happens.
I’m not sure what to make of this but a troll later identified (I assume accurately) by SDG to be “B’Art” also on at least one occasion ended his post with “Signed, Me” though at that time I don’t think the handle in employ was “Me.” This could mean that the two troll entities I referred to are one and the same entity. It could also mean that one of the two is attempting to copy aspects of the other. It would not appear to be a coincidence since the content/style of “Me” not just in this thread has similarities remarkable with both entities. In any event I would strongly urge people to follow my and SDG’s example in not feeding this troll, though always in openness to the God who cannot in theological charity be loved for his importance but only for his goodness, truth, and beauty, for who he is in himself, even though according to one school, we know absolutely nothing of what God is, only what God is not, and according to Catholic doctrine, we do not have comprehension of who God is in himself and that any knowledge that we may in any sense have of God is always, at least this side of heaven, mediated through a creature (that’s what purportedly distinguishes according to standard interpretations the beatific vision from anything else, it is purported to by some to be a vision of God unmediated by any creature without of course annihilating the creature or assimilating the creature into God)

(m)(S)(GOOD(S) iff GOOD(m)) February 15, 2009 at 2:41 pm

For some reason the variation on transcendental doctrine I used in the Name field got truncated and is missing a biconditional “< ->” … no idea why or how that happened.

(a)(b)(ONE(a) iff GOOD(b)) February 15, 2009 at 3:58 pm

Since Tim has again brought up Satan above, I’ll assume it’s OK to talk about Satan.
—————————————————
Tim J wrote:
BTW, I thought of you this morning at Mass, and for a moment wished you were standing beside me, as we all repeated our Baptismal vows;
“Do you reject Satan and all his works?”
“We do”
To (late as it is) get back to an earlier comment you made in this thread, I heard someone on the radio a couple of nights ago who certainly believes in a conspiracy of demons and in the reality of our enmity with Satan… Fr. Benedict Groeschel.
Is he a reactionary fundamentalist?
————————————————–
I can’t speak directly to what the controversial Benedict Groeschel may have said since you seem to be paraphrasing and I’m not sure what context is lost or what may be his own words and what may be your interpretative layer added to them.
But I can speak generally and say that (1) speaking of enmity between two persons or one person and many other persons, is not an indication of being a “reactionary fundamentalist” (btw, I don’t think I’ve used that term; I’ve spoken of fundamentalists, but never here of “reactionary fundamentalists”). Certainly for ex. there is enmity between some politicians and many people. And scripture* speaks of enmity in various ways. (2) believing in a conspiracy of billions+** of angels intent on harming you is not only something that is characteristic of fundamentalism but also would incidentally be considered a delusion in psychology and psychiatry except that beliefs of this kind which are attributable to religious/cultural factors are excluded in present operative theory and practice from that identification.
(I am aware that Benedict Groeschel has studied psychology)
If you have a link to an audio recording or transcript of what you heard, I could comment more directly.
BTW, why did you wish I was standing beside you there? My understanding btw is that members of the congregation can if they prefer pray in slience (just as is common in some traditional Masses). In any event, in terms of one receiving baptism as an adult, responding in that kind of fashion does not mean one need buy in to all the theological baggage that it may suggest. You don’t need to for example (in relation to “works”) accept the doctrine of the Kingdom of Satan and all its spiritual baggage in that baptismal liturgy or in spiritually joining yourself to it. You also are free (in relation to “reject Satan”) to with (Catholic philosopher) Jacques Maritain to believe that even Satan will be in some fashion be reconciled with God and that Satan and all his angels and all the damned would in time be received into at least something akin to the natural joys and natural love of God of limbo (See Avery Dulles’ article in First Things “The Population of Hell” for his commentary on this conjecture which he both praises and expresses reservations on). Now certain theologians have opined that Satan and all his angels are not proper objects of charity. By joining in liturgically and saying you “reject Satan” you of course need not agree with this opinion of Aquinas and others. You also need not come down on the side of those who stress that God does not love Satan and instead come down on the side of say whatever Rosalind Moss had in mind when she on the radio said God loved Satan (contradicting one of the young co-hosts and agreeing with the other).
http://www.firstthings.com/article.php3?id_article=488
*in my view the inspiration pertains to the truth of the literary whole in which the sentences cohere in, not to the truth of sentences in light of the literary whole — and also in my view the nature of the literary whole is determined by the primary divine author — so even if the human author intended a letter to be historically true, the divine author may have intended it to be mythically true, clothing the mythic divine truth of salvicity with human work errant through which the light of God nevertheless shines. So if some amazing archaelogical evidence were to show that the human author(s) of Genesis all intended to present a scientific and historically accurate work, IMO, that should not threaten an authentic understanding of inspiration and inerrancy. In my view, distinct from either the conservative or liberal interpretation of DV, the human author’s assertions to the extent that inspiration pertains to them, are God’s assertions — and the language of DV, in context of the limiter “salvific”, reflects that, referring to the “inspired” author. To say that scripture is inspired does not mean that every sentence of scripture and every phrase of scripture and every other utterance of scripture is the word of God just as if God himself had uttered it — that’s a fundamentalist account and as we know from history and present, a dangerous one for any religion. You don’t with scripture come into direct contact with the word of God; it is mediated in human cloth which is rags … not only error but sinful inclination may be apparent in some of this human cloth, but such as is the mystery of economy.
**In the Church Fathers, one finds the view that in some sense the elect were created and predestined to take the place of the fallen angels — i.e. the number of the fallen angels and the number of the elect would be equal. So on that view, we can assume that the number of fallen angels is probably at least in the billions. If the human species persists and population continues to be stable or rise, then we could revise that probable lower bound up higher. One needs to qualify this as “probable” since we don’t know what proportion of humans in fact number among those predestined to heaven and take the place of the fallen angels. If one supposes that only 1/1000 are so predestined, then the number of fallen angels is possibly in the millions and not the billions. But in either case, one is presenting belief in a conspiracy of scale that dwarfs any attributed to “international Jewry” by some commenters on the blog that SDG recommended I read above and also belief in a conspiracy whose invisibility is incommensurately greater than that attributed to “international Jewry” or in relation to 9/11, the U.S. Government, etc. People present purported evidence for these latter conspiracies and the evidence is debunked; the evidence for the conspiracy of billions of Satan’s minions is so non-existent that no one even attempts to present any … in fact, in a vicious epistemic cycle, the absence of such evidence is pointed to by some as a very part of the conspiracy! (i.e. that the greatest deception of Satan has been in fooling people into thinking that he doesn’t exist, etc.) As one can see, there is nothing when it comes to fundamentalists of this kind that could break that viscious epistemic cycle … except perhaps their realizing its vicious character and allowing to seep in their mind a difficulty, and then a doubt, without worrying too much about committing mortal sin or being possessed or “oppressed” by evil spirits or what have you.

Matt McDonald February 15, 2009 at 6:39 pm

Fr Kung, unlike the SSPX Catholic bishops and priests, is able to celebrate Mass, give homilies, hear confessions and the like.
Yet he is forbidden to teach his error in Catholic schools, no example of orthodoxy.
Still waiting for a quote and citation from a primary document? Just more name dropping.

(d)(GOOD(d)) February 15, 2009 at 7:26 pm

Matt, if you are willinging only to read primary sources, you will never even be able to understand them. I am sorry but as I have alluded to you seem to be unteachable. Here is the secondary source (which btw is replete with primary sources … so if you wish you can pick up the book and explore them yourself; have at it … assuming you are sincere in wanting to learn about this Catholic philosophical doctrine)
“The thesis that there is an intrinsic connection between being and goodness has a long tradition in philosophy. In the thirtheenth century however, this thesis received a new systematic elaboration because it was placed within a new theoretical framework, the doctrine of transcendentals (transcendentia). The term ‘transcendental’ suggests a kind of surpassing or going beyond. What is transcended is the special modes of being which Aristotle called the “categories.” Categories are determinations or contractions of that which is: not every being is a substance, or a quantity, or a quality, or a relation, etc. By contrast, the transcendentals are properties that belong to every being. So they transcend the categories, not because they refer to a reality beyond the categories but because they are not limited to one determinate category. Transcendentals are interchangeable or convertible with being that is itself a transcendental.”
Being and Goodness: The Concept of the Good in Metaphysics and Philosophical Theology (Cornell University Press) (p.56)
The books contributors include nine persons whom I am confident have much more ability and expertise on this than Matt does. I don’t know if it is some fanaticism or some arrogatory inclination or what — but whatever it is, let it not impede you. One of the contributors may FWIW be a name recognizable to you here namely Ralph McInerny.
The part I quoted was written by another person whom you can read about on these pages:
http://eicee2.org/e_fac_aertsen.html
http://www.thomasinstituut.org/thomasinstituut/scripts/nws_show.php?id=46
Matt, until you pick up the book I mentioned — free with interlibrary loan — and as you so claim to want to do, explore the primary sources replete therein — I will not discuss this with you further. If after reading that book and the primary sources replete there in you disagree with the academic community and with Jan Aestern’s account above, then don’t get back to me. Rather, submit a paper to a journal and then once the journal accepts it, let us know and I’ll gladly read it. Now I have to get some cloth to clean my keyboard of carbonated water.

Sarah McGrath February 16, 2009 at 10:51 am

When someone tells me I’m “free to believe” wild theories, a big red flag goes off. With free will, we’re “free to believe” anything, even deceitful theories and wild speculations and heretics, and free to choose hell. We’re also free to reject them and to expel the immoral brother.
We pray: Deliver us from evil and lead us not into temptation.

Matt February 16, 2009 at 6:01 pm

Fascinating… the troll is unwilling to cite primary or authoritative texts which can easily be found on the internet. Instead, he insists that the interlocutor must do his research for him. Not only that, but the secondary source provides no substantial support to his outlandish premise… that the devil is not evil.
Troll: until you cite a single imprimatured source that says the “devil is not evil” as you claim, take your garbage elsewhere.

(s)(A)(TRUE(A) v (x)(s=x)) February 16, 2009 at 8:35 pm

Matt: your post is inaccurate and hard to parse; I am not even sure what it is that you are disagreeing with me about. It seems that perhaps you are not an adult as I assumed and I apologize if that is so since then some of my approach may have been excessively harsh. Though you lacked charity in your response, I will endeavor below to be charitable to you.
Evil is not a positive (ontologically real) property, but rather a negative property, of no ontological being. That is Catholic dogma and you are a heretic, materially, if you believe otherwise. AFAIK, both Tim J (at least upon being made aware of it though I think he still does not understand it adequately) and SDG (whatever defects in understanding he may have) have accepted this Catholic dogma.
Evil as a negative property pertains to you and it pertains to Satan. Since I assume that is what you mean to express, you and I do not disagree on that. My suspicion is that you do not (just as Tim J did not) realize that evil as a negative property can pertain to some thing and yet that something can be — and always is — good.
Let’s take you for instance. Evil as a negative property can be predicated of you and yet goodness as a positive property can also be predicated of you. I’ve already explained the Catholic philosophy of the transcendentals, a doctrine that Tim J finally (to the extent that he might have apprehended it) accepted as true but which SDG rejected as “nonsensical” and “bogus” (at least before being made aware of what the doctrine was and its place in Cathoilc philosophical patrimony) and you have given no indication that you actually disagree with it; if you don’t understand it, then apart from reading this thread, I advise reading the book along with the primary sources that may interest you included or cited therein.
Your only beef seems to be that you want to be able to say that evil can be predicated of Satan — as I have mentioned all along, it can, but not in the way that goodness can — it can only be predicated as a negative property, a property that has no ontological being. As it so happens, according to Catholic doctrine, every positive property is in fact something that is ontologically good since ontological being is one and the same thing as ontological good, and but notionally different (only in how we formulate a conception of the thing, not in how the thing actually is)
This is the standard view. There are some other opinions that differ slightly and subtly, but they don’t change in any significant way the matter which caused so much controversy here.
Now, is there, now that you actually understand at least a little of what I was saying, maybe you and I do not disagree … or at least you do not firmly disagree with anything I have said. If so, then I guess you wouldn’t have much interest in exploring the book I recommended or the primary sources replete therein. FWIW, the primary sources in the book including things by St. Bonaventure, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Albert the Great — and a non-saint Francisco Suarez, as well as others.
Here’s one way to think about it (and I think this would help everyone). The negative (ontologically void) property of evil is true of Satan as it is of you or anyone else not to the extent that Satan or you or anyone else has being but to the extent that Satan or you or anyone else does not have being in ways Satan or you or anyone else ought. Remember, the transcendentals of being and goodness and truth and unity and “thingness” (res) and beauty are all but notionally different — they refer to one and the same thing. When you speak of the goodness of a tree you are speaking also of the being of the tree because the goodness of a tree and the being of a tree are one and the same thing. Anyway … concretely, what being is there in Satan? Which remember is the same question as asking what goodness or what beauty or what thingness or unity there is in Satan. Well, one can but speculate, but Satan may be intelligent in various ways and thus be good in those various ways. More specifically, he may be diligent in studying a matter or have great determination and so forth. Catholic doctrine does not exclude the possibility that certain natural virtues (the kind that atheists might practice perhaps) ccould inhere in Satan. Since being determined is in itself something of natural virtue (in this case it would be “natural” relative to the angels or more specifically to the species whose sole individual is Satan within the genus of angel (per St. Thomas Aquinas’ metaphysics which is a scheme very common in Catholic tradition). Having great determination is a natural virtue in humans as well. That doesn’t mean that a particular act of great determination cannot have the negative (ontologically void) property of evil predicated of it — however to the extent that act has being it is good and vice versa and likewise for being and beauty, being and truth, etc.
Regardless of how skeptical one may be of natural virtue being operative in Satan, it is not orthodox to say that the only goodness that inheres in Satan is his merely “existing” (in the common or colloquial sense where existing is like a binary thing — you either exist or you don’t and you don’t exist in some way or to some degree). The reason is that if Satan’s goodness is only in his merely “existing” than per the doctrine of transcendentals, Satan’s being is only in his merely “existing.” But if that is all there is to Satan’s being, then you could not say that Satan acts or that these acts have any being (and if they don’t then the acts don’t “exist” … and if Satan exerts any influence it cannot be true acts that have no ontological character). In addition, you could not say then that there is anything to distinguish Satan’s being from any other demon’s being since their being per the transcendentals (where being and goodness are but notionally distinct) would both consist merely of existence. But that is problematic and ultimately untenable in all sorts of ways (for ex., there would be nothing distinguishing Satan’s species of angel from that other demon’s species of angel and moreover even if you reject St. Thomas Aquina’s metaphysics of angels, you are still left with how Satan as an individual is distinct from that other demon if their being is qualitatively exactly the same … and still, you are also left with the problem of how two things that are qualitatively exactly the same can act in different ways …. anyway there is no way out of this black hole). Tim J in his initial response recognized part of this (though I think he got confused by the some thing can have evil as a negative property predeicated of it but still be good thing — to Tim’s credit he has recognized that every thing is good … he seems to say now that “intentions” can exist which are not good — Tim nothing properly speaking can exist which is not good … Chesterton is a poet, not a philosopher or theologian … intentions like any other category of being can have any transcendental (being, truth, goodness, unity, etc.) predicated of it — that is for any intention whatsoever, to the extent that it has being, it is good, true, one, etc … as I may have mentioned this poses a problem for specifically the nature of sin — the solutions proposed vary but one is to make a distinction between the physical motion of sin and the intangible malice of sin — but as the Catholic Encyclopedia notes, this seems unsatisfactory … I think a better way is to stress that sin involves the election of a good when a higher good ought to have been chosen — so evil can be predicated of sin in a negative way (ontologically void) since it is merely marking an act as having absent in itself the election of a higher good)
@Sarah
Jacques Maritain is well respected in the Catholic church.
Some translate the prayer you made your own as “test” instead of “temptation.” It may surprise you to know that Ignatius of Loyola said that were he to die and God were to give him a choice between assured everlasting heavenly glory or returning to the wayfarer state on earth to merit more heavenly glory at the risk of possibly falling away and ending up damned, that Ignatius would choose the latter. So it would seem that Ignatius of Loyola at least welcomed the opportunity to merit more glory in the face of more temptation. Yet of course Ignatius prayed the Noster Pater. I’m not aware of many others — in fact only a handful — who have expressed similar sentiments. Some saints express seemingly the opposite sentiment of wanting to die as soon as possible that they may go swiftly to heaven — that seems to contradict Ignatius’ relationship with God. Maybe different people can legitimately relate to God in different ways. If so, then it would seem there’s no reason to assume that God would institute one religion by whose revelation or religious structure one would find a bridge to heaven. For some Christ may be a bridge to heaven; for others, it may be the stars that are the ponderance of science; for others, it may be neo-Paganism.
According to Jimmy Akin, the understanding reflected in the Catechism and common in Catholic tradition is that the church will virtually die at some point. That sounds exciting. I hope that day comes soon. Since that is an “end times” sign and since many pray “Maranatha!” and in charismatic Catholic circles, in English say specifically that may Jesus come “soon” — maybe they too are hoping that such a day come soon since to hope that A when A entails B is also to hope that B. Akin expresses skepticism that this virtual death of the church will happen in his lifetime unless something “odd” happens. But news reports that include sources from diocesan officials indicate that there has been a dramatic exodus from the church in Europe due to the SSPX scandal and the matter of the bishop promotee SDG defended (who said that Katrina may have been caused by “spiritual pollution” and the brothels and homosexuals, with similarly outrageous things said of the tsunami in Asia, and fanatically — though perhaps SDG relates with his reviews of Madagascar 1 and 2 — decrying Harry Potter as “Satanism”). Some emails to some church offices specifically mentioned one or the other scandal as a reason for leaving the church. The number leaving in some areas has been some 4 times higher than a year ago. This could snowball over the years. If Benedict XVI chooses to regularize the SSPX, I think the floodgates will open.
Jimmy Akin has opined on the radio that being a “Holocaust denier” is not an obstacle to “spiritual communion” with the Church. I disagree with that. Being a “Holocaust denier” is according to many Jewish groups a sign or act of anti-Semitism and anti-Semitism (i.e. bigotry or hatred of Jews) is surely a serious sin that is an obstacle to “spiritual communion” in the Church. Maybe I did understand what Akin meant by “spiritual communion” but I assume it is inclusive of the bond of charity that the Catechism for example speaks of.
[btw, in case it wasn’t clear I don’t include in my universe of discourse “things” that are not properly speaking things, whether that be “square circles” or negative properties or what have you]

Matt February 16, 2009 at 10:00 pm

troll,
That is Catholic dogma and you are a heretic, materially, if you believe otherwise
Now you’re hurling anathemas. You really don’t understand the nature of the Church’s authority. If, as you claim believing the devil is evil is anathema, the Church will have stated as such in an authoritative document. You have no authority, zip, zero, nada. I have no authority either. You post paragraph after paragraph of your own argument without any basis in something that any of the readers will accept as authoritative (or even compelling).
The fourth Lateran council declares:
“Diabolus enim et alii dæmones a Deo quidem naturâ creati sunt boni, sed ipsi per se facti sunt mali.”
The devil has made himself evil – is the council in error?
Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in proelio, contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium. Imperet illi Deus, supplices deprecamur: tuque, Princeps militiae coelestis, Satanam aliosque spiritus malignos, qui ad perditionem animarum pervagantur in mundo, divina virtute, in infernum detrude. Amen.
This prayer is ordered to be said by popes, is it false that ‘evil spirits’ exist and which we pray to be cast into hell.
You need to consider that there are senses of stating that evil exists which are legitimate, even if we understand properly that evil is a deprivation.
a dramatic exodus from the church in Europe due to the SSPX scandal…I think the floodgates will open.
This is utter hogwash. It is widely estimated, that on a typical Sunday in France more Catholics assist at traditional masses than Novus Ordo. The exodus started right after Vatican II. You can’t blame empty churches on the SSPX.
If their faith is so shallow, they can find no salvation without true conversion. Better that they should understand the desert which they truly inhabit than to remain in a false sense of security.

Do you know what the doctrine of transcendentals is? February 17, 2009 at 5:11 am

Matt, you are lying or you did not read or understand my post. Your use of atypical terminology (“privation” is more typical in philosophy than “deprivation”) suggests that it may be that you partly did not understand and perhaps due to being unable to understand chose not to read. I’ll leave you with the last word here and anywhere else as I won’t even be reading or taking into cognizance your posts. So if you were for ex. to in a post speak ill of my mother or ask Satan to do his best to tempt my sister, I would act in nescience of such posts.
Of course I act in nescience of many posts and parts of many posts and in the latter case I usually make note of it, saying that I have not read all of a person’s post when responding to it.

Tim J. February 17, 2009 at 6:07 am

“My suspicion is that you do not (just as Tim J did not) realize that evil as a negative property…”
Believe it or not, C, I was aware of that long before you ever posted at JA.O. I would stop and think, if I were you, before assuming that you have enlightened or educated the readership here to any great degree, though that seems to be the role in which you invariably see yourself.

Tim J. February 17, 2009 at 6:15 am

“Here’s one way to think about it (and I think this would help everyone)…”
The paragraph that follows the above quote is pretty much all truly stated and is also (FWIW) familiar ground for many Catholics who listen to Jimmy’s podcasts, or who pay attention to Catholic Answers shows, etc…
Please don’t suppose you are introducing some hidden knowledge, here, CW.

Tim J. February 17, 2009 at 6:20 am

“But news reports that include sources from diocesan officials indicate that there has been a dramatic exodus from the church in Europe due to the SSPX scandal”
Sources?

Tim J. February 17, 2009 at 6:39 am

Satan is good at being evil.
Also, it is possible (however unlikely) for someone to deny the holocaust and not be anti-Semitic (maybe they just tend toward conspiracy theories, like people who think we never went to the moon), so Jimmy is correct and you are not.
Again, CW, you interpret every ordinary sentence as a formal statement of doctrine where it suits you. If I say “there is a vacuum inside this light bulb”, will you insist that I have had weak training in philosophy, because a vacuum is a negative property and so vacuums, properly speaking, can’t be said to “exist” or to “be” inside a light bulb?

Tim J. February 17, 2009 at 6:56 am

May I also point out (as tiresome as this has become) that a very common understanding and usage of the word “good” is to mean “morally upright”, in reference to caring and working for the sake of others? Satan is not good in this sense.. “Non serviam”.
I would even say that it is in this moral sense that ordinary people would normally speak of Satan being “good” or “bad”, not in relation to how smart he may be or how effective in his work (which we – all being good Christians – reject, I’m sure). One could easily say “Johnny is a very good soccer player AND a very bad boy”.
Therefore, one could say in this moral sense, “Satan is not good” with great confidence. But then, that wouldn’t get much attention.

Satan is Not Good February 17, 2009 at 7:01 am

“The word ‘good’ has many meanings. For example, if a man were to shoot his grandmother at a range of five hundred yards, I should call him a good shot, but not necessarily a good man.”
G.K. Chesterton

[Inappropriate handle deleted] February 17, 2009 at 7:23 pm

OK, so I’m unclear now, is “Satan” (or “Lucifer”) now a permitted term in the Name field? I’m assuming it is since Tim J has just used it, so I’m going to adopt a different Name with this post, whose ambiguity is intentional and which for all I know be permitted as a Name even if Tim’s usage of “Satan” was an anomaly.
In case those not schooled in Latin usage in the Church don’t know when speaking of saints, the Latin is “Sanctus” — so for example, “Sanctus Petrus” is the Latin but in English we say “Saint Peter.” That kind of weakens the force of the Latin since as you may know, the same Latin word “sanctus” is used in the Mass of God “Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus ” which we in English say as “Holy, holy, holy”.
So where’s the ambiguity? If you don’t know, well besides that “Lucifer” can refer to Jesus or to Satan, it can also refer to a man known as “Sanctus Lucifer” i.e. “Holy Lucifer.”
Tim, if “ordinary people” limit “good” to the way little children speak of “good” versus “bad” or how Santa asks how you have been “naughty” or “nice”, then sure “Satan is good” would not be understood well by “ordinary people.” I would quibble with your statement about “moral” but again if understand “moral” in the way “ordinary people” do as above, then yes the same is true.
I think the problem was that “Satan is good” was taken to mean “Satan is someone who is noble and to be admired as am example to follow and emulate.” But the fact that it was taken that way suggests that there is as John Paul II suggested a catechetical desert, that catechesis is in extremely poor shape. It’s also just the way we ought to approach language that when someone speaks we understand it in ways in which it would be true, not in ways in which it would be false — that implicit rule of speech, gives context to every utterance of speech.
BTW, thanks Tim for your stamp of approval on my explanation to which you referred.
As for vacuums, the way physics uses the term “vacuum” does not correspond to something ontologically void. Things for example can pop into being in a vacuum which would not be possible if a vacuum were truly ontologically void … unless of course something can come from nothing.
I said it was due to the SSPX scandal and related affairs. As for sources
austriantimes.at/index.php?id=11173
“ORF Radio Upper Austria reported 110 Catholics had left the Church in the Linz diocese last week, four times the number who did so in the same week last year, and said an official of the Linz diocese had commented the number had been “unusually high”.
The official added many Catholics had sent his office emails in which they said the Wagner’s nomination as auxiliary bishop of the diocese was the reason for their departure from the Church.
Many people had also criticised Pope Benedict XVI for his rehabilitation of bishops in the Pius X Brotherhood in their emails, the official said.

Reuters reports the number leaving as unusually high throughout Austria as well
And as IHT reports, they have been inundated with this:
http://www.iht.com/bin/printfriendly.php?id=20234023
“In Vienna on Monday, 10 Austrian bishops convened a crisis session to deal with the fallout. Erich Leitenberger, a spokesman for the Vienna Archdiocese, said church officials around the country had been inundated with letters, phone calls and e-mail messages, including from parishioners saying they were leaving the church.”
And as Radio Vatican reports, a “wave of exits” has begun in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.
http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/world/archives/2009/02/08/2003435578
For news specific to Germany:
http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/germany/090213/german-catholics-leave-the-church
“Germans divorced themselves from the Catholic Church in the hundreds last month, the news magazine Der Spiegel reported. The number of departures is up as much as 40 percent in some areas.”
Not as much as being up 300 percent in some parts of Austria, but still dramatic. And there’s no sign of the this tide stemming. Some are ambivalent:
““I’m still Catholic but no longer want to be Roman Catholic,” writes one user named Wolfgang E. “On Monday I’m going to discuss with my confessor how best to go about that.””
The same sort of thing is happening in the Netherlands and also in France. Theologian Jean-Pierre Wils is among those in the Netherlands who has left apparently. A loss for the church.

Tim J. February 17, 2009 at 8:03 pm

” ‘Lucifer’ can refer to Jesus or to Satan…”
I suppose it *could* refer to my garbage man, if I suddenly, arbitrarily decided to use it that way (he does “lighten” my trash cans). I’m not aware of any Christian use of that name to describe Jesus, though, so you’ll need to provide some for me (I’m just so uneducated, see).
But I’m sure if I knew Latin that would change everything!
But, my “bad” for explicitly bringing up Satan to begin with (though the subject has been implicit in almost every post from our strangely persisitent poster, CW).
I will henceforth be sure to follow the admonishment of SDG and drop the whole subject of that old infernal crank altogether.

SOS, SDG... February 18, 2009 at 2:45 am

I hope you’re fine, but as you can see your Wunderkind has been taking advantage of your absence here to wreak even more havoc…

[Inappropriate handle deleted] February 18, 2009 at 11:32 pm

Tim, to answer your question — I assume you want me to answer it? … some mentions of “LUCIFER” in the Bible are interpreted by some to refer to someone other than Jesus and some are interpreted by some to refer to Jesus and there is overlap, i.e. some say this mention refers to someone other than Jesus while others say it refers to Jesus.
In terms of the Catholic liturgy, Jesus is called “LUCIFER” in the Exultet aka Easter Proclamation
Flammas eius lucifer matutinus inveniat:
Ille, inquam, lucifer, qui nescit occasum:
Christus Filius tuus,
qui, regressus ab inferis, humano generi serenus illuxit,
et vivit et regnat in saecula saeculorum.
which using the translation on Wikipedia, while keeping lucifer as Lucifer would read:
May the Lucifer which never sets
find this flame still burning:
Christ, that Lucifer,
who came back from the dead,
and shed his peaceful light on all mankind,
your Son, who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
In this spirit, I pray: “Sanctissimus lucifer in Mariam et cum Mariam regnat per omnia saecula saeculorum.” And may this reign of the most holy lion, more noble than the King of Judah and gods of men’s own making, “in Mariam et cum Mariam” give blessing to to every body and even give rise to ecstasy and and the consoling embrace of the “unitive way” in women and men wherever and whenever the most holy spirit deigns to bring to mortal women and men the glory of the sons of God. May we pray that you whose light is sought by all may bring great good from the SSPX and other situations of injustice and traditionalism in the church; may Catholics and non-Catholics alike be led to draw near to Latin delights profane restoring to its rightful place the study of the Classics in Western Civilization whose foundation is not found in any sectarian figure of religion, but in the cultural treasures of Ancient Greece and Rome and may these inspire us to find peace in ecclesial matters such as the SSPX and peace in all matters, that we may do always what is authentically attractive to our living bodies knowing that its authentic attraction is per Catholic doctrine a sure guarantee of its rectitude.
P.S. Thanks for acknowledging your bad for the second time. Thanks also for changing your cross posting practice. I’m sure you just weren’t aware of the convention before I made it known to you. Good job.

[Inappropriate handle deleted] February 18, 2009 at 11:55 pm

It’s occurred to me, Tim, that you didn’t understand the third thing I spoke of when I was speaking when I spoke of a “man.” You seemed to think I was speaking of a garbage man. As I’ve said, “Saint Peter” in Latin is “Sanctus Petrus” It’s just that in English we sometimes translate sanctus as “saint” or “saintly” and sometimes as “holy.” Just as there is a “Saint Peter” there is also a “Saint Lucifer.”
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Lucifer
As I have suggested, using “saint” to translate Sanctus is not wise and we should speak of “Holy Peter” and “Holy Lucifer” etc. Let me give an example that proves the point I made earlier. People easily say “We are free to disagree with Saint So and So” and if they are polite they might say “Saint So and So, though he was a holy and wise man, is not infallible and I disagree with him on this one.” Well, if they actually knew what the Latin “Sanctus” meant, they wouldn’t say that would they? For then they would realize they’d be saying, “Holy So and So, though he was holy ….” which is redundant.
As they say garbage in and garbage out. We need to go back to making rudimentary Latin a strongly encouraged course of study in schools.

[Inappropriate handle deleted] February 19, 2009 at 4:07 am

I will have to leave you with the last word.
Due to a personal emergency, I don’t anticipate being able to participate in discussions on this blog for the indefinite future. Please find it in your heart to pray for me and my loved ones. Thank you.

SDG February 19, 2009 at 4:32 am

Well, I’m back, after being out of the country for an amazing, often glorious week — a lifelong highlight — about which more later.
And what do I find? C being C. A splash of icy water — stagnant, unwholesome water at that — welcoming me back to ordinary life. (As I prepare to post this, I see that, while I was writing the following, C has posted a brief exit for the time being. Well, I’ll post it anyway.)
C: What a sore tooth you are.
What a relentless trial, a thorn in the flesh. You know, you really are a sort of satan, an adversary and a tempter, tirelessly testing and provoking, but always ready with an alibi, an exit strategy, plausible deniability.
Practically everything you say is defensible with the necessary context stipulated. And a great deal of what you say bears — and is, I think most reasonable people would agree, deliberately and maliciously calculated to bear — a prima facie meaning bound to nettle, offend or otherwise distress others. You have elevated passive aggression into an art form, with more sophistication (in more than one sense) and refinement than I think I’ve ever seen it pursued. You lay traps, wait for someone to take the bait, and then spring the gotcha. Again and again and again and again and again and again and again. Poke poke poke poke poke poke poke.
Why “Saint Lucifer,” C? Why an obscure 4th-century bishop whose name, according to one source, “demonstrates that ‘Lucifer’ (meaning ‘light-bringer’) was not yet merely a synonym of ‘Satan’ in the 4th century” (italics mine), but which caused confusion even among “19th century biblical scholars” who supposed that “Luciferians were Satanists,” and which today lends itself to such inevitable confusion that, “although his cultus has not been suppressed nor his canonization reevaluated, he is not often celebrated or spoken of in the calendar”? (Most Catholic-source references I can find call him “Lucifer of Cagliari” or “Bishop Lucifer” precisely in order to avoid the confusion that, for you, seems to be the whole point.) Or why play on the possibility of applying the term “light-bearer” in certain contexts to Jesus, etc., when you and every other reasonably fluent speaker of English knows damn well what “Lucifer” readily conveys in common English usage, and has for centuries?
Are we meant to accept that your choice of “Sanctus Lucifer” is completely unconnected to your previous “Satan is good” business, and that the prima facie similarity is just an innocent chance coincidence? No. You’re simply triangulating the land mine, finding multiple convergent angles of approach to conveying satanic perversity without technically committing yourself to it, or while maintaining plausible deniability against having committed yourself to it. If and when other people misunderstand you — and I can’t think that any other poster in the history of this blog has ever suffered so much misunderstanding as you — then that’s their fault for being poorly educated, and you bear no responsibility.
But you do, and you know it. You know enough moral theology to know that you bear moral responsibility for the foreseeable consequences of your actions. If I put a bumper sticker on my car with Catholic iconography and the legend “Worship Mary,” on the grounds that the word “worship” has a semantic range beyond latria, I would become morally responsible for the inevitable confusion, distress and stumbling that will result. If I used the phrase in one specific context, say at a party where I clarified it for everyone listening, that would be different. But of course many people would see your “Sanctus Lucifer” reference without having read your explanation.
What’s more, your words here are bound (calculated, I say) not only to confuse but also to distress even when the defensible construction is known, because the prima facie meaning can’t be escaped or forgotten. For example, pointing out the sense of “intercourse” as discourse or conversation does not mean you can go on talking to a man about your having “intercourse” with his wife, since the prima facie meaning is too loaded. And if you juxtapose such an outrageous double entendre with other in-principle defensible remarks, e.g., references to his wife’s “promiscuous passions” (meaning that she has a range of unrelated hobbies and interests), calling her a “hussy” (which can bear the sense “frolicsome or sportive”) and a “tart” (in the original sense as a term of endearment), etc., before long, quite justly, he is going to want to punch you in the face.
Well, this is you. Thou art the man.
And it doesn’t even matter if I crack down like German stormtroopers on the “Satan/Lucifer” business. I can’t change your M.O. The worst effect, the really oppressive thing about your presence on this blog, at least for me, is that you force me, constantly, into the role of policeman and arbiter. You’re like a rotten little kid whose life revolves around testing the boundaries to find out where they are. Can I do this? Well then, can I do this? How about this? And this? And this and this and this? You let him do that, so why can’t I do this? Ad infinitum.
Policemen and arbiters are what we need when decency and ordinary human give and take have broken down. When and where decent people willingly make reasonable efforts to avoid trespassing unnecessarily on one another’s boundaries, erring where possible on the side of caution and respect, making reasonable efforts to try to avoid causing others foreseeable but unnecessary confusion and distress, policemen and arbiters will generally have very little to do. It’s like how Mark Shea says if you aim to treat people with respect, you won’t accidentally torture them. By the same token, if you aim at marital fidelity, you won’t even ask where the line is where infidelity starts. When questions like that start becoming an issue, things have already gone wrong. And that’s your whole M.O.
P.S. Added just before posting: I see you’re leaving for time time being. As you ask, I will pray for you and your loved ones.
I also ask you not to come back at all, unless and until you have a radical change of heart about your past conduct here, and are willing to apologize and mend your ways.

huliman February 19, 2009 at 11:42 am

I am curious about this whole discussion. Why does it really matter if the Bishop questions the Holocaust. Even the German government admits that there where no gas chambers in operation on German territory during the war. I have been to Ausschwitz and have seen these gas chambers. The stories don’t add up. The director of the gas chamber would have his 3 children play in the grass 50 meters away from the gas chambers. No person would have their children playing next to poisones gases. So I don’t think the Bishop questions the killings of innocent Jews, just that they were not done via gas chambers. So I am tired of the Catholic church backing down.

huliman February 19, 2009 at 11:45 am

I think the Pope needs to stick to his guns and not back down. Just like when he made his controversial statements about Islam. What he spoke is truth. What the Bishop says is truth. And the truth will set you free.

Matheus February 19, 2009 at 6:18 pm

Dear huliman
Do you remember that the “Holocaust” didn’t target only Jews? Have you heard of this saint? Have you ever seen this movie?

Leo February 20, 2009 at 3:52 pm

According to this report SSPX websites in a number of countries have anti-semitic content.

huliman February 21, 2009 at 2:28 pm

I just want to add that SSPX should also consider the Diary of Anne Frank as a documented fraud. See what the German government has to say about it way back in 1980
http://christianparty.net/annefrank.htm

huliman February 21, 2009 at 2:33 pm

Matheus,
I don’t know what your point is about a fictionalize story called the NinthDay. My point is that the gas chambers where never in operation anywhere in Germany or Poland. My ancestors, who are Jewish, moved to Australia frequently stated that Auschwitz was managed by Germans and run by Poles. The Poles committed more attrocities than the Germans. This is all well documented by covered up. Again the truth will set you free.

huliman February 21, 2009 at 2:39 pm

It is interesting that the world has certain sacred cows that can never be questioned: The Holocaust, the legacy of Martin Luther King, and the truth of Evolution.

Matheus February 21, 2009 at 2:55 pm

…a fictionalize story called the NinthDay…

…sacred cows that can never be questioned: The Holocaust…

Dear huliman
So St. Maximilian Kolbe was just a “Modernist” moron who didn’t get the memo…or probably he didn’t exist, either.
I’m mesmerized by how rad-trads are capable to use the same outrageous expedients of their modernist enemies that they pretend to fight. Like liberals, they end up creating a parallel reality to conform to their worldview.
I hope rad-tradism has the same destiny that all historical heresies, at least formally, had (even if it can’t be technically classified as one): oblivion.

bill912 February 21, 2009 at 6:10 pm

“This is all well documented by covered up.”
Perhaps you could get covered up to supply some of this documentation.

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