In this podcast, we make the pivot from Scripture to Dogma. The topic is Trinity. This is the podcast “in between.” We offer some guidelines for sound Catholic study of history. An absolute must is the historian’s commitment to this proposition: Dogma is infallible and unchangeable. The historian who refuses to acknowledge this will almost always go astray in the reading of history. After all, we are reading theologies. Theology is a sacred science. The historian who refuses to accept dogma as infallible (certainly true) and unchangeable will fail to have the equipment necessary to read things in the best light.
We do see the Fathers and Doctors struggling in this early time. Hence, the image above of “furrowing the ground.”
With this podcast, we begin our treatment of the Most Holy Trinity, the heart of Christian faith. We explore various biblical points of departure for this Mystery. We do so in the manner that dogmatic theology does. This does not involve re-inventing the wheel of labor in biblical theology. Rather, it involves reaping the harvest of the heavy labors of those in biblical theology. We reap, also, with the aid of dogmatic theological precision and of Magisterial Dogmas and Doctrines.
Many 20th century theologians, even Catholic ones, present us with a God that changes. “The unchanging God is dead,” they say. They premise their musings on God, esp. on his inner Trinitarian life, on this thesis that God changes.
In fact, the thesis that God changes is heresy. The Church in her constant and universal teaching condemns it. Thus, a good theologian should condemn it. Not to do so is heresy.
It helps us to see why God must be immutable. We attempt to do that in this podcast. We also consider and reply to various objections from recent thinkers who argue that God is mutable. While these thinkers are trying to get God closer to them, in fact they push him away. For the God who is beyond all change is more interior to me than is the god who changes, who is on the level with me, only bigger … but in a corner of the universe, far away.
In this podcast, we examine God’s simplicity. The upshot of the proofs for God’s existence has tremendous yield. In order to be the Act without potency that is source of the world, God must be utterly simple. So, we have a theological reason for affirming divine simplicity. We also have a dogmatic reason for affirming it: The Church teaches it. And since the Church teaches it, there is a Scriptural basis for this affirmation as well. If it is not explicitly in Scripture, it is at least not contradictory to Scripture. But the great Old Testament is built around the unicity and oneness of God. So, it is a Scriptural affirmation as well. If you’d like to follow the argument more closely, you might acquire my text (linked here) that outlines this and other treatments of dogmatic issues.
In this podcast, I first indicate the range of the “First Way,” its analogical extensions. These extensions indicate the richness of the yield of the first way. I consider the First Way to be demonstrative; however, even if one only considers it invitational to thought, the yield to which it invites is rich.
Second, I offer a reading of the Fourth Way indebted to some great thinkers of the 20th century and also to Edward Feser. As sketched in the ST, the 4th Way needs supplementing. It is, as are the other arguments, a “thumbnail sketch” of a deep line of argumentation. The 4th Way is often called the “Platonic” way. However, Aquinas cites only Aristotle. Indeed, elsewhere, when he approaches God’s existence in this line of argumentation, he cites Aristotle. I suggest, following the above thinkers, that there is an Aristotelian causal argument underlying this way. The global, macroscopic picture is Platonic, in the manner of Christian Platonism, but the underlying argument is Aristotelian. In short, Platonic Participation calls for an Aristotelian causal analysis. But Aristotelian causal analysis is shored up and macroscopically expressed in the Platonic idiom.
Today, the first of two podcasts concerning proofs for the existence of God.
If you’d like to follow the argument more closely, you might acquire my text (linked here) that outlines this and other treatments of dogmatic issues.
Just as St. Paul reasoned with the Athenians towards the existence of the God he proclaimed, so human reason can argue with those of good will towards the existence of the God who transcends all reason, who is a Fire, Terrible and Marvelous, Forgiving and Tremendous.
This is a podcast on Legitimate and Illegitimate pluralism in theology.
First, we paint two caricatures of errors. Two extremes, as it were. These are obviously problematic.
Then, we argue for a more profound understanding of this issue. God is one. All differences among the saints and doctors must not be prized for their own sakes. Rather, we must let truth build lovely upon truth. Thus, all that rises must converge.
I complete my treatment of Pius X’s portrait and condemnation of Modernism.
Again, this is a portrait gathered from many elements. He is not saying that anyone exactly matches the portrait. He is arguing that there is a coherent logic in the thing portrayed. So, sundry instantiations of this portrait are possible. Many “family resemblances.” And, lo and behold, this seems true enough, as I suggest.
This is the first of 2 podcasts on Pius X’s portrait of Modernism. It is a coherent portrait of the disparate elements of modernism wrapped up in one.
It is not that any thinker exactly instantiates this portrait. Rather, the various elements suggest this converging view on the various matters of theology. I suggest that there are indeed theologies of recent memory that have, to greater and lesser degrees, “family resemblances” to this portrait. Pius X is to be commended for drawing up the portrait. Family resemblances of this great heresy are, alas, still with us. Worse: Their proponents are secretive. It is an “occult heresy.”