Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Obviously, I've been reading a lot on the uproar around the Pope's remarks. How is it possible that "the West" doesn't "get it". Doesn't anyone realize that the Pope's strongest criticisms were not of Islam but of "the West"?

READ THE TEXT

"The intention here is not one of retrenchment or negative criticism, but of broadening our concept of reason and its application. While we rejoice in the new possibilities open to humanity, we also see the dangers arising from these possibilities and we must ask ourselves how we can overcome them.

We will succeed in doing so only if reason and faith come together in a new way, if we overcome the self-imposed limitation of reason to the empirically verifiable, and if we once more disclose its vast horizons. In this sense theology rightly belongs in the university and within the wide-ranging dialogue of sciences, not merely as a historical discipline and one of the human sciences, but precisely as theology, as inquiry into the rationality of faith.

Only thus do we become capable of that genuine dialogue of cultures and religions so urgently needed today. In the Western world it is widely held that only positivistic reason and the forms of philosophy based on it are universally valid. Yet the world's profoundly religious cultures
[which by the way includes Catholicism] see this exclusion of the divine from the universality of reason as an attack on their most profound convictions."

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