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:: The Lidless Eye Inquisition ::

A weblog dedicated to the exposure of the crackpots of the lunatic self-styled 'traditionalist' fringe who disingenuously pose as faithful Catholics.
Welcome to The Lidless Eye Inquisition | bloghome
"Do not allow yourselves to be deceived by the cunning statements of those who persistently claim to wish to be with the Church, to love the Church, to fight so that people do not leave Her...But judge them by their works. If they despise the shepherds of the Church and even the Pope, if they attempt all means of evading their authority in order to elude their directives and judgments..., then about which Church do these men mean to speak? Certainly not about that established on the foundations of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus Himself as the cornerstone (Eph. 2:20)." [Pope St. Pius X: Allocution of May 10, 1909]

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[:::....Recent Posts....:::]

The revocation of indefinite suspension to this we...

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As I am planning a return to blogging in other for...

Though this weblog has been suspended "in perpetui...

After pondering this in recent days, I cannot thin...

Points to Ponder: I now come to the positive reas...

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Final Reflections I would like to thank Shawn McE...

The Inquisitors
:: I. Shawn McElhinney
:: F. John Loughnan
:: Peter J. Vere JCL
:: Greg Mockeridge
:: Apolonio Latar
:: Gregory Rossi
:: Keith Kenney
:: The Curmudgeon
:: Mark Bonocore
:: Gregg the Obscure
Affiliated Weblogs/Websites
:: Rerum Novarum [>>>]
:: Sean O' Lachtnain's Home Page [>>>]
:: Envoy Encore Weblog (Peter Vere JCL, contributor) [>>>]
:: Cooperatores Veritatis [>>>]
:: Thoughts of Apolonio Latar III [>>>]
:: Sancta Liturgia [>>>]
:: Disturber of the Peace [>>>]
:: Vita Brevis [>>>]
Specialty Weblogs
:: The (New) Catholic Light BLOG (Peter Vere JCL, contributor) [>>>]
:: John Betts' Boycott BLOG [>>>]
Ecumenical Jihad*
:: Apolonio Latar and Kevin Tierney's Culture of Christ BLOG [>>>]
Specialty Weblinks
:: A Prescription Against 'Traditionalism' [>>>]
:: On the Intricacies of Dialogue - A Commentary [>>>]
:: The 'Tradition is Opposed to Novelty' Canard [>>>]
:: On Assisi and Catholic Principles [>>>]
:: F. John Loughnan's "Classification of Some Integrist (Lidless Eye) Websites" [>>>]
:: A Syllabus of Various (Mostly Pseudo-"Progressivist") Dissenting Authors [>>>]
:: A Canonical History of the Lefevrist Schism - Peter J. Vere's License Thesis From Saint Paul University, Ontario, Canada [>>>]
:: What Makes Us Catholic Traditionalists - written for The Wanderer December 6, 2001 (I. Shawn McElhinney/Pete Vere JCL) [>>>]
:: Yes Virginia, Fr. Nicholas Has Been Suspended - written for The Wanderer March 6, 2003 (Pete Vere JCL/I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Squelching Fr. Gruner's 'Squawking Squire' [>>>]
:: RadTrad Watch [>>>]
:: Antisemitism and the Catholic Right [>>>]
[:::....Site Intention, Disclaimer, Copyright, Etc....:::]
:: Intentions of this Weblog (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Weblog "War and Peace Length" Disclaimer (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Site Copyright (I. Shawn McElhinney/SecretAgentMan) [>>>]
:: Exhortation to Those Who Participate in the Message Boxes (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On Linking to Tridentine Apostolates, Etc. --A Lidless Eye Inquisition Clarification Thread (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
[:::....Heretical Pseudo "Traditionalist" Apostolates....:::]
Mario Derksen's Catholic Insight
:: Responses to Mario Derksen--Parts I-III (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Mario on EENS (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Mario Derksen's Errors on Man (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Mario Derksen's Sedevacantism--Parts I-III (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Response to Mario --Parts I-II (Kevin Byrne) [>>>]
:: Mario's Sedevacantism and His Conscience (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder -I. Shawn McElhinney's Discussion List Comments on the "Karol Wojtyla is the Pope" Subject (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
Gerry Matatics' Apostolate
:: Gerry Matatics Too Hard Line For The Remnant (Pete Vere)[>>>]
:: Concerning Gerry Matatics and His Alleged Sedevacantism (Pete Vere) [>>>]
[:::....Schismatic and Theologically Specious Pseudo "Traditionalist" Apostolates....:::]
Catholic Apologetics International (or CAItanic)
:: Bob Sungenis' "Reply" to Richard John Neuhaus --Parts I-II (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - Richard J. Neuhaus on CAItanic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On CAItanic and the "Petrification" of their Opponents (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: On Stunted Ecclesiology and Other Examples of the Arrested Development of CAItanic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Baghdad Bob Meets Bible Bob (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Commentary on CAItanic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Sungenis/Ferrara and Double Standards (Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: On Sungenis’ “Novelty”--Parts I-II(Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: A Short Response to John Salza and Sungenis (Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: A Brief Clarification by Your Weblog Host On "Mr. Ipse Dixit" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Matatics vs. Sungenis (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Sungenis and God's Contingent Knowledge--Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: On "The Big Bang Theory" and its Pertinance to Catholic Doctrine (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
The Novus Ordo Watch
:: On "Novus Ordo Watch" (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: More on "Novus Ordo Watch" (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Props to David Alexander (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
The Remnant
:: Beyond Lunacy (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: The Remnant Gets it Right (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Commending Christopher Ferrara (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
The Society of St. Pius X (SSPX)
:: Points to Ponder - on the SSPX (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: On the "Reconciliation" Rumours of the SSPX (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: SSPX Demotes Key Priest Hoping For Reconciliation (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Three Cheers for Sedevacantism (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: On Fr. Paul Aulagnier (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Schism For One Dollar (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Bishop Rifan the Prophet (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Is the SSPX Still Lefebvrist? (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Civil War Breaks Out in the SSPX's French District (Pete Vere) [>>>]
[:::....Controverted Apostolates...:::]
Kevin Tierney and His Apostolate
:: Responding to Kevin Tierney's Criticism (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Some Brief Comments on Kevin Tierney's Response to Gregg the Obscure (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Response to Kevin Tierney's Response to I. Shawn McElhinney (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: More Sophistry From Kevin Tierney --Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Briefly on Obedience and Kevin Tierney's Appeal to Canon Law 212 (I. Shawn McElhinney/Pete Vere JCL) [>>>]
:: Responsum ad Tiernam Dubiosum --Parts I-III, Addendum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Note About A Blog (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Radtrads Again (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On True and False 'Traditionalism' With Kevin Tierney --Parts I-VII (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Pope John XXIII, Pacem in Terris, and Global Government --Parts I-III(Greg Mockeridge) [>>>]
:: Clarification on Global Government (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Brief Response to Kevin Tierney (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Musings on Diversity (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: An Example of the Honesty That Must Accompany Dialogue (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Muttering On Many Subjects (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Detailed Response to Kevin on The Revised Missal, Corpus Christi, Church Attendance, Church Forms, Protocol 1411, Etc. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Musings (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: "Responsum ad Tiernum" Dept. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Discussing the Liturgy and Various Contrastings With Kevin Tierney (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Refuting the “He’s Not Disobedient. He's Just Stupid.” Defense (Greg Mockeridge) [>>>]
:: "Responsum ad Tiernum" Dept. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
[:::....Controverted Subjects and People in General....:::]
:: Response to a Self-styled "Traditionalist" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the Term "Inquisition" (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Addressing a Sedevacantist Heretic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: February's Quote of the Month (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: On TAN Books (F. John Loughnan) [>>>]
:: On Defining Modernism (Chris Burgwald) [>>>]
:: Refuting the Late 'Trad' Michael Malone's Errors on Vatican II (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From His Beatitude Melkite Patriarch Maximos IV Saigh, Cardinal of the Roman Church (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: The Catechism and Radical Traditionalists (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Screwtape Parody on Radical Traditionalism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Dialogue With a Rad-Trad --Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Hell and the Catechism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Sola Fide Trads (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Some Traddie Fallacies Examined (F. John Loughnan) [>>>]
:: Dialogue With Adrian a Self-styled 'Traditionalist' --Parts I-VIII (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From St. Opatus of Milve (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Mr. Smith's Misunderstandings --Parts I-VI (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the Integralist-'Traditionalist' Conection --Parts I-V (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Discussion With Christopher Blosser on Reflections on Covenant and Mission (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the Morality of Promoting Conspiracy Theories (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Question About the Magisterium (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: John Paul II and Islam (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Have 'Traditionalists' Been Too Hard on the Pope Viz Islam (F. John Loughnan) [>>>]
:: A Conversation --Parts I-II (I. Shawn McElhinney/Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Fatal Flaws of False 'Traditionalism' With Albert Cipriani--Parts I-VII (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Conversation on Spiritual Maturity and the Traditional Catholic Approach to Difficulties --Parts I-III (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Is it Okay to Complain? (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Obedience: The Rise of True Catholics --Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Radtradism and Mother Teresa (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Common 'Traditionalist' Errors in Dogmatic Theology and the Ordinary Magisterum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Notes on the Ordinary Magisterium (SecretAgentMan) [>>>]
:: Some Self-styled "Traditionalist" Mendacity (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Posting Rules for Radical 'Traditionalists' (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Thoughts on Radtradism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Why Garrigou-Lagrange? (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: The Syllabus (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Refutation of Some Common Radtrad Misuses of Citations (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: The Errors of Michael Malone Revisited (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Confuting an Attempted Justification for Schism --Parts I-II (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Another Assisi? Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder -Maximus the Abbott as quoted by Pope Leo XIII in Satis Cognitum §13 (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Dialogue With a 'Traditionalist' (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: "To Be Deep in Catholic Theology is to Cease to Be a (Pseudo) 'Traditionalist'" Dept. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From Pope Benedict XV (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On Charles de Nunzio (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: For Those Interested (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Refuting Mike's Errors (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: A Response to Mike Tucker (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Will it Merely Be More Uncatholic "Business As Usual"??? (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From St. John Bosco (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From St. Irenaeus of Lyons (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Dialogue/Debate on Pascendi (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From Cardinal Ratzinger on the Revised Roman Missal (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Responsum ad Hibernius (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Material (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: On Liturgical Dance (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: On Humanism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Humanism and Vatican II (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: John Paul II and Universalism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Scruples (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: On Tony Blair and Receiving Communion (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Confuting Radical Pseudo-'Traditionalist' Nonsense --Part I (Mark Bonocore) [>>>]
:: Confuting Radical Pseudo-'Traditionalist' Nonsense --Part II (Mark Bonocore/I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: "Wast-ing A-way A-gain in Se-de-vac-ant-a-ville" Dept. (Mark Bonocore/I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the McElhinney Media Dictum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Tomorrow Christendom (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Correcting a Common Misperception of This Weblog (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Response to a Guimaraes Article (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: A Response to Fr. Nitoglia (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: More on "Tomorrow Christendom" (Dom Calvet/Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Surprised by Canon Law (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Briefly on Michael Davies' Passing (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On Redemptionis Sacramentum and Canonical Implications for Ecclesia Dei (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Notification of Assisi Essay, Etc. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - Richard John Neuhaus on the Vatican and "Americanism"--Parts I-VI (I. Shawn McElhinney)[>>>]
:: 8 Things You Can Do to Stop the Judaizers (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: On Circumspection in Speech and Public Writing (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: On the Revised Missal Ordination Rites and Other Tidbits (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
::Points to Ponder - John Laux on an Interesting Parallel from History on the Subject of "Preserving Tradition" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: In Fairness to Michael Forrest (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Michael Forrest and the Jews (Pete Vere) [>>>]
::Points to Ponder - Pope Gregory XVI on the Authority of the Popes (I. Shawn McElhinney)[>>>]
:: Michael Forrest and the Jews--Part II (Pete Vere) [>>>]
[:::....Miscellaneous Dialogual Subjects...:::]
:: Real Catholic Traditionalism (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: An Open Challenge to Catholic Traditionalists (Dom Gerard Calvet/Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Briefly on Quo Primum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Traditionalist Debate of the Millenium: Pete Vere vs. Shawn McElhinney (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Dialogue on Ecclesia Dei With Mark Downey (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Sister Lucia of Fatima, Ora Pro Terri Schiavo (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Ecclesia Dei And Respect for Traditionalists (Greg Mockeridge) [>>>]
:: On "The Vile Spectacle of Traditionalists Rooting for Bad News" --Dialogue With Kevin Tierney (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>> [>>>]
:: On Liturgical Nonsense, Recent Restore Rants, Church Music, Etc (I. Shawn McElhinney)[>>>]
:: Briefly Revisiting an Old Subject (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Examining Kevin Tierney's "Catholic Contract" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
[:::....Guest Editorials...:::]
:: The Problems Some Have With Interfaith Outreach (Guest Editorial by Gary Gubinski) [>>>]
:: On the Liturgical Movement (Guest Editorial by the Society of St. John; Prologue by I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Jacinta's Vision (Guest Editorial by Fr. Thomas Carleton) [>>>]
:: Guest Editorial on Private Revelation (Kevin M. Tierney) [>>>]
Any correspondence will be presumed eligible for blogging unless the sender otherwise specifies (cf. Welborn Protocol)

*Ecumenical Jihad listing is for weblogs or websites which are either dedicated to or which to the webmaster (i) are worth reading and (ii) characteri ze in their general outlook the preservation of general Judeo-Christian morality and which are aimed at positively integrating these elements into society. (Such sites need not even be Catholic ones.)

As society has grown more estranged from its founding principles, I wish to note sites which share the same sentiments for the restoration of society even if the means advocated in this endeavour differ. The Lidless Eye Inquisition does not necessarily endorse particulars with sites under this heading.

:: Tuesday, May 25, 2004 ::

The Rerum Novarum Miscellaneous BLOG has been updated. As the subject matter pertains to the kind of subject matter covered on this weblog, I note the link HERE for those who are interested.

:: Shawn 5:19 PM [+] | ::

:: Saturday, May 22, 2004 ::
Mario Derksen's Errors on Man


Have you read Mario Derksen’s Daily Catholic articles? Can you respond his article “The Humanism of John Paul II: A Plethora of Phenomenological Personalism. Part 15”? (http://www.dailycatholic.org/issue/2002Oct/oct18mdi.htm). Also, do you still interact with him?

No, I do not interact with Mario anymore. Would I like to? Sure. However, his Rad-Trad mentality, it seems to me, gave him a cold heart. I remember emailing him about Gabriel Marcel, asking what he thinks of him. I was hoping I can have a dialogue, not debate, with him on Marcel’s philosophy and what he thought about other philosophies in light of Thomas Aquinas. However, he answered something like, “Why are you emailing me?” So I guess he does not want to talk to me anymore. Also, you must know something about Mario. It seems that Mario has become a sedevacantist. I knew this was going to happen and so did Phil Porvaznik and Shawn McElhinney. This is his “little secret” which he does not want to expose. Personally, I think he is a coward. He defends the sedevacantist position, but he does not want to publicize it. Is it because of prudence? I don’t think so. From what I have heard, and I have a couple of sources, he has made up his mind about his position. If he truly believes that sedevacantism is true, then why doesn’t he say so? He is a “public figure” in the Rad-Trad community (his website and Daily Catholic) and for him not to tell us his true position is to me, cowardice. Of course, I will retract those statements if it is not true that he is actually a sedevacantist. But anyway, we are getting distracted. I will now respond to some points in his article.

Mario says:

Just why humanism? Why not orthodox Catholicism? Why is John Paul such a humanist?

But this is a false dichotomy. Humanism and Orthodox Catholicism are not contradictory. As John Paul II said in his writings, a true humanism is Theo-centric. In fact, I believe that Aquinas’ Prima Secundae is humanistic. More on this later. He says:

Why is John Paul such a humanist? I suppose only God and perhaps John Paul II can answer this question satisfactorily. However, we can at least make an attempt at understanding the possible motivation that lies behind his strange theology. As always, a messed-up theology originates in messed-up philosophy. When we look at John Paul II's philosophical interests and upbringing, we see that he admired and/or was influenced by Edmund Husserl, Max Scheler, Jacques Maritain, Henri de Lubac, and Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.

Well, those are not the only people he was influenced in. Professor Kenneth Schmidt says:

“The broader influences upon him include of Aristotle and St. Thomas, St. Augustine and St. Bonaventure, and, to be sure, that of St. John of the Cross, about whom he wrote his doctoral dissertation at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome. He is also conversant with the various versions of Thomism: the structured, traditional Thomism of Garrigou-Lagrange at Angelicum; the transcendental Thomism of Joseph Marechal at Louvain; the existential-historical Thomism of Etienne Gilson; the existential Thomism of Jacques Maritain; the “act” Thomism of Josef de Finance; the participatory Thomism of Cornelio Fabro; and of course, with various Polish Thomists, including his own teachers and colleagues.” (At the Center of the Human Drama: The Philosophical Anthropology of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II, pgs. 34-35)

Mario goes on:
The way Husserl defined his phenomenology and the way he wanted it to work, it is not acceptable for a Catholic, because, among other things, it sets aside issues of reality and truth and falsehood. However, some people, even Catholics, have attempted to modify Husserl's phenomenology such that it could be used fruitfully in philosophical and theological investigations. Having studied the issue for quite a while, I must say that I find it to be, at best, nothing other than utterly verbose sophistry with little substance.

This is the same kind of things I see Rad-Trads say. They reject John Paul II’s use of phenomenology. However, Dietrich von Hildebrand was also a big fan of Husserl. Why don’t they condemn his writings? In fact, I would say that John Paul is more scholastic than von Hildebrand. John Paul tried to use phenomenology as a tool to express his Thomistic thought.

He then says:
For his Ph.D. dissertation in philosophy (1953), John Paul II (as Karol Wojtyla) wrote on the ethics of Max Scheler. While critical of Scheler's conclusion, Fr. Wojtyla was intrigued by Scheler's use of the phenomenological method to reflect on and "penetrate" Christian ethics. Now, John Paul II certainly loved Scheler's phenomenology, and this left a lasting impression on John Paul's thought. But John Paul did not only have a love of phenomenology, but also of anthropology, the study of man. Now, put the two together and you get phenomenological anthropology - and, I think, this is what we've been seeing in the encyclicals and homilies and other writings of this Pope. Fancy words and highly complicated expressions, spanning lots of pages, while saying very little, and constant references and allusions to man. I don't know about you, but that's how I experience John Paul II's writings.

Of course John Paul makes constant references and allusions to man. Why shouldn’t he? In the 20th century, man has turn against man. Communism took man’s identity away from him. John Paul brings this back. As far as “Fr. Wojtyla was intrigued by Scheler’s use of the phenomenological method to reflect on and ‘penetrate’ Christian ethics”, of course he was. But he did this with his Thomistic/scholastic background. I’ll give you one example. John Paul, then Karol Wojtyla said:

“Although I have arrived at the concept of the “human act” within the framework of a phenomenological inquiry of Husserlian orientation, it has to be pointed out that it coincides with the notion of “actus humanus” as elaborated by Thomas Aquinas. “Actus humanus” follows from the nature of the acting person, from man understood as subject and author of his action. Indubitably the most valuable element in Thomas’s concept of “actus humanus” is that it expresses the dynamism of a concrete being, man in its specific complete determination drawn from the total man. That specific dynamism finds further elaboration in Thomas’s studies on “voluntarium,” for dynamism proper to the activity of man (agree humanum) and to the human act finds its roots in the will. St. Thomas analyzes the nature, structure, and actualization of the will very much in detail.” (“The Intentional Act and the Human Act, that is, Act and Experience,” Analecta Husserliana 5 (1976): 279, n. 2.)

Here, you can see how he depends on Aquinas’s metaphysics to build a solid ethical analysis.

Mario says:
Last time I checked, Christ didn't come to reveal truth about man but only truth about Himself and about God and about salvation. That Christ's teaching has implications for what is true about man, that's no doubt true. But John Paul treats it as though we would somehow have to discover something about man, as if man were the focal point. No pre-Vatican II Pope to my knowledge ever talked about there being some "big truth about man" that Christ came to reveal or that we have to glimpse. This is utterly novel, and wasn't made possible until Vatican II, the council of man!

Notice the contradiction in Mario’s words. He says “Christ didn’t come to reveal truth about man” and then says “but only truth about Himself…and about salvation”. But isn’t salvation about man? Salvation is the communion of God and man. So there *is* something about man in there. Christianity tells us that “God became man so that man might become a god”. This is a Patristic teaching, especially of the Eastern Churches. The East emphasized man’s role in salvation very explicitly and you can read this from any Eastern Church Father. So this isn’t “utterly novel”. It is just that Mario has a one-sided theological mentality which is limited to neo-scholastic manualists.

He says:
The Pope admits as much when he says that it was Vatican II that taught that "it is only in the mystery of the Word made flesh that the mystery of man is seen in its true light" (Gaudium Et Spes #22). Isn't that sickening? I mean, what the heck is this talking about! "Mystery of man"? Why is everything after Pius XII, and especially since John Paul II, a "mystery"? It is unbelievable. I think this is the phenomenological spirit that the Pope has picked up, which ends up mystifying everything. In the end, there is no more reality but only "profound mystery" to be "penetrated" and some "richness" in it all that ought to be "reflected on." Hello? Are we on the same planet here? Don't get me wrong. I don't mean to banalize Sacred Doctrine. St. Thomas Aquinas affirmed that our minds could never even grasp - really grasp - the essence of a fly! However, at the same time, St. Thomas taught clearly, with authority, and with God's and the Church's approval, that we can have real knowledge of real things, not just earthly things but also things in the spiritual and metaphysical realms. While having a healthy respect for man's limited knowledge, St. Thomas nevertheless was an epistemological optimist.

Why is everything a “mystery”? Because everything *is* a mystery, especially the human person. The Eastern Churches’ theology is that of a mystery. Mario’s lack of understanding of the universal apostolic Church is a pity. He limits his theology to neo-scholasticism and forgets that there are riches in other traditions. Also, notice how he said, “St. Thomas Aquinas affirmed that our minds could never even grasp-really grasp-the essence of a fly! However…we can have real knowledge of real things, not just earthly things but also things in the spiritual and metaphysical realms.” Great. But no where in John Paul’s teachings does he say that we cannot grasp metaphysical or spiritual truths. In fact, he would not write encyclicals if he believed this were so. Mario fails to remember what he learned in theology 101: mystery is not that we cannot know anything, but that we cannot know everything. We cannot know everything about man and hence, it is a “mystery”. And how can we? Man is not an object, but a subject.

Mario in that article criticizes of how “Christ fully reveals the truth about man” is somehow blasphemy. He said, “He suggests that by God's revelation of Himself in Jesus Christ, He has revealed man to himself; that by showing us who He is, He shows us who we are - what utter nonsense, and utter blasphemy.” But by saying his, Mario has departed from the Tradition of the Church. For example, as Etienne Gilson said, “The miniature world of man will never be known unless we know something of the greater” (The Spirit of Medieval Philosophy, 219). Gilson then says:

“Hard as it is to know one’s own state of conscience, and to grasp man’s relation to his surroundings, it is nothing like so hard as what it still remains to discover. What a man finds circa se or sub se is overwhelming in amount, what he finds in se is embarrassing in its obscurity, but when from his own being he would obtain light as to what is supra se, then indeed he finds himself face to face with a dark and somewhat terrifying mystery. The trouble is that he is himself involved in the mystery. If, in any true sense, man is an image of God, how should he know himself without knowing God? But if it is really of God that he is an image, how should he know himself?” (The Spirit of Medieval Philosophy, 219)

In that passage, Gilson tells us how man is a mystery. He also says that “man will never be known unless we know something of the greater”. And what is the “greater”? Is it not Jesus Christ? And if Jesus Christ is the “greater” then do we not know more about ourselves if we know Christ? So why is it a blasphemy to say that Christ reveals man to himself? In Bousset’s words, “Wisdom lies in knowing God and knowing oneself. From knowledge of self we rise to knowledge of God” (ibid, 228). St. Bernard says:

“He is not wise who is not wise for himself; let everyone be the first to drink at his own well. Begin by considering thyself and, better still, end with that. When thy consideration wanders elsewhere recall it to thyself: and this will not be without fruit of salvation. Thou for thyself art the first, and also the last.” (De consideratione, lib. II, Cap. III, n.6)

To end, I will quote Pascal:
“Know, proud man, what a paradox thou art to thyself. Down then feeble reason; and let this foolish nature keep silence! Know how much more than merely man is man, and learn from your Master your true condition of which you are wholly ignorant. Listen to God.”


“To know God, and yet nothing of our wretched state, breeds pride: to realize our misery and know nothing of God is mere despair: bit if we come to the knowledge of Jesus Christ we find our true equilibrium, for there we find both misery and God.”


:: Ap 9:20 AM [+] | ::

:: Saturday, May 15, 2004 ::
On Tony Blair and Receiving Communion:

Last year, I read on many blogs and discussion groups (and even some message boards) that the pope gave Tony Blair communion in his visit to the Vatican last year. I remember well the stink this caused amongst so-called "traditionalists" who claimed that the pope had undercut the authority of the local ordinary in Mr. Blair's dioceses who had refused him communion. Now, in doing a word search for articles with different subject matters in them, I find this article from The Guardian which makes it clear that Tony Blair -an Anglican whose wife and children are practicing Catholics- did *not* receive communion from the Holy Father. Instead, he came forward for a blessing which he was given. I am wondering how many of those who misreported on this subject -including not a few who identify themselves as "traditionalists"{1}- will weigh in now and say "I misrepresented the facts" and will do so as prominantly as they announced their errors to begin with. My guess is that the answer is if not zero than darn near zero of them will.


{1} Including unfortunately some who have my respect. I hope that those individuals will rectify their previously enunciated errors on this situation.

:: Shawn 2:06 PM [+] | ::


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