Sunday 23rd July 2017

Home » Featured Today » Currently Reading:

Trump, Benedict, And Remembering Thought Quarterly

July 17, 2017 Featured Today No Comments

By JUDE DOUGHERTY

Thought was the title of a highly respected Fordham University quarterly, published from 1926 to 1992. During that period, its website tells us, it published 267 issues containing over 5,000 English-language contributions by philosophers, theologians, literary intellectuals, and others. Among its well-known contributors were Dietrich von Hildebrand, Bernard Lonergan, Jacques Maritain, Walker Percy, and Karl Rahner.
The journal was named appropriately for it carried essays that could not be classified strictly as theology or philosophy in spite of their subject matter, and others that fell short of the scholarly apparatus demanded by technical journals such as The Modern Schoolman or Speculum.
As a student I valued my subscription. Many years later I was sad to see the periodical go, although I was never a contributor.
“There are in history highly respectable works that we would not call philosophical but which we could describe as ‘wisdom literature’,” writes Rémi Brague in his study of Arabic philosophy in The Legend of the Middle Ages. He adds reinforcement for his point of view by reminding the reader that Heidegger places “thought” on a higher plane than philosophy.
Brague is particularly sensitive to the broad cultural context in which philosophy in any period develops. He finds that opinions generally admitted within a given community provide the basis on which philosophy is built. Those opinions are historically conditioned, and they come in the final analysis from the legislator of the community. He could point to Constantine, Justin, and Charlemagne as examples.
The Arab world, as Brague notes, makes room for something between Falsafa and Kalam. The problem is how much credibility is to be assigned to “thought” or true opinion, as in Plato. Absent demonstration, can we acknowledge truth?
Plato in the Meno, after introducing the notion of “true opinion,” has Socrates speak of the value of such knowledge. True opinion, although supported by fact, falls short of demonstrative knowledge but is nevertheless required by him who would govern. “Men,” says Socrates, “become good and useful to the state, not only because they have knowledge, but because they have right opinion.”
Pope Benedict XVI said much the same thing in an address he gave to the World Culture meeting in Venice in 2008. Rejecting the notion that European culture is “liquid,” Benedict affirmed that judgment in matters culture and economic depend not only on one’s assessment of the present but largely on one’s historical insight. He recognized that any argument based on history falls short of demonstration, yet knowledge of history enhances one’s ability to make informed judgments.
“Men and women are free to interpret and give meaning to reality, but in doing so they must not be afraid of the Gospels,” he said, aware of the tendency on the part of the European intellectual elite to ignore the Christian sources of Western culture as they advance their progressive agenda.
The Wall Street Journal, in an editorial commenting on President Donald Trump’s recent speech in Warsaw, noted that “Mr. Trump is clearly aligning himself with the same warning issued to Europe some years ago by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger.”
Cardinal Ratzinger’s argument, the editorial went on to say, was that Europe needs to recognize that its turn toward aggressive secularism poses a threat to its survival. In Trump’s formulation of that threat, we are obliged to “confront forces, whether they come from inside or out, from the South or the East, that threaten over time to undermine these values and to erase the bonds of culture, faith, and tradition that made us who we are.”
Anyone who has followed the lectures and essays of Joseph Ratzinger from his years as professor of theology in Regensburg to his discourse as Pope Emeritus, or Fr. Benedict, as he prefers to be addressed, will find in them a wisdom, ”true opinion,” one may say, rooted in both scholarship and experience. His is the type of knowledge that Plato prescribed for those who would govern.
To return to my theme, much of Professor Ratzinger’s work could have been published in Thought, but one will not find it there. One will find it instead in Communio, a journal he founded with Hans Urs von Balthasar and Henri de Lubac in 1972, shortly after he became professor of theology at Regensburg.

Share Button

2017 The Wanderer Printing Co.

Bishops to Trump: Don’t abandon young people to deportation

Washington D.C., Jul 20, 2017 / 06:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Undocumented young people brought to the U.S. by their parents contribute to American society and deserve continued protections from the Trump administration, said the U.S. Catholic bishops this week. “These…Continue Reading

Facing outrage – Facebook unblocks Catholic pages

Dozens of Catholic Facebook pages have been blocked, according to several Catholic news organizations. UPDATE: Facebook has unblocked more than 20 Catholic-interest pages – blaming the issue on a technical glitch. “All Pages have now been restored,” a Facebook spokesperson…Continue Reading

Bishops stress hospitality for Camino de Santiago hosts

Santiago de Compostela, Spain, Jul 14, 2017 / 04:38 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The bishops of Spain and France have published a new letter emphasizing the importance of hospitality for people who host pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago, offering guidelines…Continue Reading

Cardinal Sarah wants ‘liturgical reconciliation’ between old and new forms of Mass

Sarah says phrase ‘reform of the reform’ should no longer be used but wants ordinary version of Mass to be more like the extraordinary form The Cardinal leading the Vatican’s divine worship office has called for a truce in the…Continue Reading

Video game store promotes graphic animated porn to 35 million child users

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 10, 2017 (NCOSE) – A mainstream online video game store, with an estimated 35 million users under the age of 18, is facilitating gamified sexual coercion and animated pornography featuring genitalia, ejaculation, to users of all ages. This…Continue Reading

Trump: ‘If We Do Not Have Strong Families and Strong Values…We Will Not Survive’

(CNSNews.com) – The values that bind America and Europe together – freedom, faith and family — are threatened from the outside by common enemies and from the inside by bureaucracy, President Donald Trump told a cheering crowd of Poles in…Continue Reading

House Republican says health care bill in jeopardy over Planned Parenthood

Rep. Trent Franks said Wednesday that if Planned Parenthood funding is added to the GOP health care bill, numerous Republican senators will no longer support it. “I think a lot of us are ‘no’ votes,” the Arizona Republican said. “We can’t continue…Continue Reading

Müller has a clear criticism of Francis

Critical criticism of Pope Franziskus was voiced by the Kurien Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Mueller. He told the “Passauer Neuen Presse” (Thursday) that Pope Francis Francis had informed him of the decision not to extend his office as a prefect of the…Continue Reading

Cardinal Joachim Meisner, one of the four ‘dubia’ cardinals, has died aged 83

Former German Bishops’ Conference president and Archbishop of Cologne Cardinal Joachim Meisner has died at the age of 83. Cardinal Meisner served as Archbishop of Cologne for 25 years. A spokesman for the archdiocese said he died on Wednesday morning…Continue Reading

Vietnamese Catholic blogger sentenced to 10 years in prison

HANOI, Vietnam – A Vietnamese court sentenced a Catholic blogger to 10 years in prison for propaganda against the Communist government. Rights activists described the sentence as “heavy.” Nguyen Ngoc Nhu Quynh, 37, also known as “Mother Mushroom,” was tried…Continue Reading

‘It’s not all black and white’: New cardinal criticizes 4 cardinals asking Pope for clarity

ROME, June 30, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — One of Pope Francis’ newly appointed cardinals is already calling out fellow cardinals who are questioning the new direction in which the Pope is trying to move the Church. Archbishop Juan José Omella of…Continue Reading

Vatican’s Cardinal Pell charged with sex abuse, vows to defend himself in Australia

Australian police on Thursday charged Cardinal George Pell, a top adviser to Pope Francis, with multiple historical sex crimes, bringing a worldwide abuse scandal to the heart of the Vatican. As Vatican economy minister, Pell is the highest-ranking Church official…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for 150 years in our weekly print edition.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to su
bscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 150 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.
 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

Today . . .

Bishop Conley: 50 years after Land O’Lakes, Catholic education needs renewal

Denver, Colo., Jul 21, 2017 / 04:05 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The 50th anniversary of a historic statement that changed Catholic higher education in America represents both a cautionary tale and a chance to reflect on Catholic renewal, said Bishop James D. Conley of Lincoln, Nebraska. “The Land O’Lakes statement proposed to redefine the mission of the Catholic university. It rejected the authority of the Church, and of her doctrinal teaching,” Bishop Conley said. “It rejected…Continue Reading

Self-pitying and disgruntled, Cardinal Müller takes more jabs at Pope Francis

Cardinal Gerhard Müller has issued new, thinly veiled criticism of Pope Francis by complaining that the pontiff has effectively eliminated Germans from top positions in the Vatican and by insinuating that he is allowing a “pope cult” to fester. In an interview with the German news agency Deutsche Presse Agentur (dpa), which spanned some two hours, the former prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) complained once more and at length…Continue Reading

Pro-Life Group Slams Republican Opposing Senate Bill to Defund Planned Parenthood

Senator Shelly Moore Capito is one of three Republicans in the Senate who opposes the Senate bill to defund Planned Parenthood and repeal Obamacare. She has flip-flopped from suporting the bill to opposing it — but her political calculations are not playing well at home. The junior senator from West Virginia previously voted to repeal the failing ObamaCare legislation but did so expecting a certain veto from then President Obama. Now, it appears that Capito…Continue Reading

In latest appointments, Pope names new members of Roman Rota

Vatican City, Jul 20, 2017 / 06:15 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Fr. Pierangelo Pietracatella and Fr. Hans-Peter Fischer are the newest members of the Roman Rota, and mark the latest in a string of appointments Pope Francis has made this summer as part of his ongoing effort to restructure the Roman Curia. Hailing from the northern Italian diocese of Toronta, Fr. Pietracatella, a member of the Rota, has been named as it’s new Chief of Office.…Continue Reading

Archbishop Chaput Responds to Vatican Magazine Attack On Pro Trump Supporters . . .

chaput

History is full of great quotations that people never said. One of the best lines comes from Vladimir Lenin. He described Russian progressives, social democrats, and other fellow travelers as “useful idiots” – naïve allies in revolution whom the Bolsheviks promptly crushed when they took power. Or so the legend goes. In fact, there’s no evidence Lenin actually spoke those words, at least in public. But no one seems to care. It’s a compelling line,…Continue Reading

Advertisement(2)

Wellington Mara… A Pro-Life Giant

By DONALD DeMARCO An unexpected gift arrived in the mail some time ago — a copy of Judie Brown’s autobiography, courtesy of Wellington Mara, co-owner of the New York Football Giants. It was on the basis of my friendship with Mrs. Brown and the fact that I was seen as “a co-worker in her mission…Continue Reading

Alliance Defending Freedom… Condemns ABC’s “Journalistic Malpractice”

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Alliance Defending Freedom Legal Counsel and Director of Communications Kerri Kupec commented July 13 on ABC News’ abandonment of objectivity in repeating false accusations against ADF made by the ultra-partisan Southern Poverty Law Center. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions spoke at an Alliance Defending Freedom meeting on July 11, “and some in…Continue Reading

A Book Review… A Non-Polemical Study The Third Secret Of Fatima

By DONAL ANTHONY FOLEY On the Third Part of the Secret of Fatima, by Kevin Symonds (En Route Books and Media, 2017, 582 pages, $35.00 paperback, $10.05 Kindle). On the Third Part of the Secret of Fatima is a quite comprehensive treatment of this difficult subject, and one based on extensive documentation and copious footnotes.…Continue Reading

A Pope Who Understood The American Vision

By TERENCE P. JEFFREY (Editor’s Note: Terence P. Jeffrey is the editor in chief of CNSnews.com. Creators Syndicate distributed this column.) + + + It was a bright April day in Washington, D.C., when a large crowd gathered on the South Lawn of the White House to greet a man celebrating his 81st birthday. The…Continue Reading

Neither Left Nor Right, But Catholic . . . A Disturbing Portrait Of The Present-Day American Left

By STEPHEN M. KRASON (Editor’s Note: Stephen M. Krason’s Neither Left nor Right, but Catholic column appears monthly [sometimes bimonthly] in Crisis. He is professor of political science and legal studies and associate director of the Veritas Center for Ethics in Public Life at Franciscan University of Steubenville. He is also cofounder and president of…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

The Sacramental Seal Of Confession

By DON FIER Only bishops and priests, as we saw last week, are valid ministers of the Sacrament of Penance. Just as Christ works through His ordained ministers in the Eucharist to transform bread and wine into His Body and Blood, so too He works through bishops and priests to forgive the sins of repentant sinners. The Vicar of Christ…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Q. I never hear our priest talk about the Apostolic Pardon. Please explain this blessing to me and why I don’t hear much about it. — M.G., Alabama. A. Once the Sacrament of Penance has been given to a dying person, says the document Pastoral Care of the Sick (n. 201), “the priest may give the Apostolic Pardon for the…Continue Reading

The Pearl Of Great Price

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Seventeenth Sunday In Ordinary Time (YR A) Readings: 1 Kings 3:5, 7-12 Romans 8:28-30 Matt. 13:44-52 In the Gospel reading today, our Lord tells us that the Kingdom of Heaven is like something that is hidden: a treasure buried in a field, a merchant searching for a pearl, or an item pulled ashore in a net.…Continue Reading

Maiorem Hac Dilectionem . . . A New Way Toward Beatification

(Editor’s Note: Below we publish the full text of the Holy Father’s motu proprio on a new way toward beatification, titled, Maiorem hac dilectionem. It takes its title from the words of our Lord as recorded in the Gospel According to St. John, “Greater love than this no man hath, that a man lay down his life for his friends”…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World… Charlie Gard Case A Warning For Faith

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK The world has become embroiled in the story of Charlie Gard, the British infant caught in the web of the National Health System, the bureaucrats of which have decided that he must be denied any further help and “allowed to die.” Any further efforts of doctors to aid him are seen as the cause of…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Bonaventure

By CAROLE BRESLIN There are many saints who have been called saints long before the formal process for canonization was put in place. Some of the names by which we know them may not be the names they were given at birth, but indicate their special gifts. For example, St. Veronica, known from the sixth station of the cross, may…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Bridget

By CAROLE BRESLIN One of St. Teresa of Calcutta’s most quoted sayings would fit with this column’s saint, “God hasn’t called me to be successful. He has called me to be faithful.” What encouraging words for anyone seeking to do God’s will, knowing that the cross, the setbacks, and the obstacles are all part of working for the Kingdom of…Continue Reading