Sunday, February 24, 2013

The moral genius of Catholicism is that we can fail over and over again to live up to the ideals of the gospel...and it never occurs to us to lower our standards so that our failures earn us cheap blue ribbons for good conduct. We repent, receive God's mercy, and get on with doing what we promised to do.

-Fr. Philip Powell, O.P.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Neuhaus' Law: Where orthodoxy becomes optional, orthodoxy will sooner or later be proscribed.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Why God wishes us to worship him.

Perhaps you should contemplate the difference between Christ crucified and Kim Jong Il. A God who calls us to worship him is, by definition, giving us the best he has, which is himself. A man who demands worship is substituting himself for the best there is, which is God. Jesus didn’t exactly get the royal treatment when he came.

-Mark Shea (in a comment on his blog)
God is no more a “factor” in the mechanics of evolution than in the mechanics of automobiles. My auto mechanic takes neither God nor Darwin into account when repairing a transmission. There is no mention of God in the postulates of Euclidean geometry, either. I don’t know why anyone thinks this is astonishing. It all depends on the nature and depth of our considerations. I don’t take my laundry into account when mowing the lawn.

 Creation and evolution are simply not the same sort of thing; and God cannot be reduced to a mere efficient cause in the World among other efficient causes. The workings of Nature are not somehow independent of God’s giving existence to Nature. Otherwise, gravity and electromagnetism would be as upsetting as evolution.

 “You poor fools,” said William of Conches back in the day. “God can turn a cow into a tree. But has he ever done so? Therefore, give reasons why a thing is so or cease to hold that it is so.”

Or to quote St. Albertus Magnus: “In studying nature we have not to inquire how God the Creator may, as He freely wills, use His creatures to work miracles and thereby show forth His power; we have rather to inquire what Nature with its immanent causes can naturally bring to pass.”

(That is, methodological naturalism in the sciences was a medieval Christian invention.)

-"Ye Olde Statistician" (Mike Flynn) in a comment on Mark Shea's blog)