Friday, December 17, 2010

“Development is just a self-fulfilling prophecy”

Here's an exchange I found interesting:
Arturo Vasquez Cites Eamon Duffy citing Newman:

“We have come to a climax of tyranny,” he wrote. “It is not good for a Pope to live 20 years…. He becomes a god, [and] has no one to contradict him”…

Arturo Vasquez:
I think [Catholicism] is the only religion in the modern Western world that merits the name, in that it tries to mix universality and systematic rigor with plurality and local manifestations of the supernatural. Do I think it works? No. But it is still a noble try. As I have written above, I am pessimistic to the point that I think the whole thing is on the verge of collapse, at least a major section of it.

Michael Liccione:
I’ve long thought that the attitude you share is an all-but-inevitable reaction to the scandal of particularity, which is really the difficulty, for many, of seeing the mutual inherence of the universal and the particular. There’s no way to “get it” from the outside; one has to live it from within the tradition, as you clearly recognize. Your own contribution is to point out that “the outside” is now “inside” the Church. I agree that such is the case for many individuals; but to conclude that’s it the case for the Catholic thing as such, one must assume that its intensional reality is reducible to its extensional reality. Only, it isn’t. And that fact lies at the core of the Catholic thing.

Arturo Vasquez:
Well, you can win an argument by addressing reality or you can do it by moving goal posts and saying you kicked the winning field goal that way. If there is something that I have concluded about Mike & friends’ argumentative style is that they tend to argue using the latter method. “Catholicism” will win as an institution because “Catholicism” is invincible. The antagonism is always outside of the Platonic definition of “Catholicism” floating in the ether. How things look in reality, well, your mind is playing tricks on you. Don’t pay any attention to that. God forbid we should argue that change exists in the very idea itself. Otherwise, the sky would fall, we would have to curl up in a fetal position in the corner, dogs will marry cats, etc.

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