- Many remark on the supposed irreconcilability between the philosopher’s alleged duty to follow the evidence wherever it leads and the believer’s commitment to his faith. Pater Edmund Waldstein addresses this in a great post on how it is possible for believers to honestly consider arguments that contradict their faith. A glimpse at his take: “Aristotle in the Physics certainly takes the arguments of Melissus and Parmenides on the unity and immobility of being seriously in the sense that he carefully examines their evidence, and tries to see what led them to think thus. But … he is not open to being persuaded by their conclusion. And the reason is that the reality of plurality and motion in the world is more known to us than any of the abstract premises from which Parmenides and Melissus are working. There is nothing unserious about Aristotle’s approach. On the contrary there would be something unserious about approaching the question with an agnostic attitude toward the reality of plurality and motion.”
[Apologies to Pater Edmund if this notifies him twice. A couple days ago I accidentally posted the draft of this part before I should have, which I then deleted.]
- Over at The Smithy, Michael Sullivan wrote a post on the same subject.
- Of course, Concerning Faith of Things Not Seen by St. Augustine should always be mentioned as a very brief but powerful argument on the necessity of faith. (This reminds of the very insightful point C. S. Lewis makes at the start of this article, that using one’s reason is not always the rational thing to do).
- The entire text of Ivan Illich’s Medical Nemesis is available online here. It must be kept in mind that Illich was a social critic, not a doctor. Some of his information is dated now, and while I certainly do not want to endorse everything he says regarding medical science, I feel he makes some valuable comments about society’s abuse of medicine.
- Bekkos has posted an amazing resource: the entire Dictionnaire de Théologie Catholique available freely online. There is an extremely valuable entry on Georgios Scholarios written by Jugie that details not only his life, but also summarizes his works.
- What did Manhattan look like in 1609? This is pretty cool, since from time to time I’ve always wondered what my neighborhood looked like 500, or 1000, or 2000 years ago.
- Another article from the same source on personifying inanimate objects. One reason for why even scientists tend to anthropomorphize (e.g., ‘fluorine wants to have a full outer shell of electrons’) is that there is a likeness between how humans naturally tend to certain goods and how inanimate objects tend to certain states (e.g., fluorine by its nature tends to have a full outer shell of electrons, particles by their nature tend to move to a region of lower concentration, etc.).