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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

From faith to gnosis

From a Christianity Today (I think) a couple of years ago:

What happens when this Christian witness wanes has been the subject of Ratzinger's extensive and uniquely insightful cultural analysis of Europe and Western civilization. The same themes that Ratzinger developed when responding to intra-Catholic debates about faith and reason, philosophy and theology, and the Church and the modern world are fully on display in his diagnosis of the ills of the West. He develops what Rowland calls a "double helix" genealogy of corruption "in which the Hellenic component of the culture was severed from the Christian and in which the Christian component was fundamentally undermined by the mutation of the doctrine of creation … . When faith in creation is lost, Christian faith is transformed into gnosis, and when faith in reason is lost, wisdom is reduced to the empirically verifiable which cannot sustain a moral framework.

Because the starting point of faith is creation (Heb 11:2) and faith here is of course, not the wishful thinking that Mormons, for instance consider it, but the sure hope of God's intervention into (well, creation of, in fact) our world for relationship with him. The 'empirically verifiable' ceases to be accessible without its own faith in the correlation of our sense experience and the external world, which, if not objectively real, evaporates.

2 comments:

neil moore said...

The doctrine of Creation has certainly been mutated within the Church over the past two centuries.

First came the mutation of belief in the age of the earth in the 19th Century then in the 20th Century came the mutation of belief in the manner of Creation.

While Darwinism was presented to the world in the 19th Century it was not until the 20th Century that the Church really sucked it in.

SAD that there are so many mutant thinkers within the Church.

Neil

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