True Pope? – II

True Pope? – II posted in Eleison Comments on May 7, 2011

By no means everybody agrees with the opinion laid out here one week ago (EC 198) whereby subjective good faith or good will on the part of Conciliar Popes prevents their hair-raising objective heresies from invalidating them as Popes (see Prof. Doermann for John-Paul II’s teaching of Universal Salvation, see Bishop Tissier for Benedict XVI’s emptying out of the Cross). The opposite opinion is that these heresies are so hair-raising that #1, they cannot possibly have been uttered by true Vicars of Christ, or #2, no amount of subjective good faith can neutralize their objective poison, or #3, subjective good faith is excluded in the case of Conciliar Popes trained in the old theology. Let us gently take each argument in turn:—

Firstly, just how far the Lord God can allow his Vicars to betray him (objectively), God alone knows for sure. However, we do know from Scripture (Lk. XVIII, 8) that when Christ returns, he will hardly find the Faith still on earth. But is the Faith yet, in 2011, reduced to that point? One may think not. In which case God may allow his Conciliar Vicars to do worse yet, without their ceasing to be his Vicars. Does not Scripture declare at exactly the moment when Caiphas was plotting the crime of crimes against God, namely the judicial murder of Christ (Jn. XI, 50–51), that he was High Priest?

Secondly, it is true that the objective heresy of well-intentioned heretics is much more important for the Universal Church than their subjective good intentions, and it is also true that many objective heretics are subjectively convinced of their own innocence. For this double reason when Mother Church is in her right mind she has a mechanism for forcing such material heretics either to renounce their heresy or to become fully-fledged formal heretics, and that is her Inquisitors, whom she endows with her God-given authority to define and condemn heresy, to maintain the purity of doctrine. But what happens if it is the highest authority in the Church that is swimming in objective heresies? Who is there above the Popes that has authority to correct them? Nobody! Then has God abandoned his Church? No, but he is putting it through a severe trial, all too deserved by the tepid mass of today’s Catholics – and, alas, Traditionalists?

Thirdly, it is true that both John-Paul II and Benedict XVI received a pre-Conciliar training in philosophy and theology. But by their time the worms of Kantian subjectivism and Hegelian evolutionism had already for over a century been eating the heart out of the concept of objective and unchanging truth, without which the concept of unchangeable Catholic dogma can make no sense. Now one may well argue that both those Popes were morally at fault – say, love of popularity, say, intellectual pride – for falling into material heresy, but moral faults cannot replace authoritative doctrinal condemnation for purposes of turning them from material into formal heretics.

Therefore since only formal heretics are excluded from the Church, and since the only sure way of proving someone to be a formal heretic is not available in the case of Popes, a certain range of opinion on the problem of Conciliar Popes must remain open. “Sedevacantist” does not deserve to be the dirty word that liberal “Traditionalists” have made of it, but on the other hand the arguments of the sedevacantists are not as conclusive as they might wish or pretend. In conclusion, sedevacantists may still be Catholic, but no Catholic is yet obliged to be a sedevacantist. I for one believe the Conciliar Popes are valid Popes.

Kyrie eleison.

“University” Wasteland

“University” Wasteland posted in Eleison Comments on July 24, 2010

Several years ago when I wrote that girls should not go to university, a number of readers were shocked. But when I listen today to a young Professor who recently spent six years teaching English Literature in an English “university” (not the same thing as a true university!), it seems I should add that boys should not go either. Or they should at least think very hard before going, and their parents should think very hard before shelling out the expensive fees. Here, in order, is what the Professor observed, what he sees as its causes, and what he sees as its remedies.

In the “university” where he taught, he observed no pursuit of truth nor education for truth. “Language is a game independent of reality, producing its own artefacts. The students are made to feel that everything is relative, there are no standards, values, nor moral framework nor moral reference. The sciences are infected with an evolutionism which opposes “science” to religion. The “Humanities” are degraded by a Freudian interpretation making everything centre on s-x. Professors tell students to have a s-x life because “it is good for them.” These “universities” advertize their night life, and almost praise the sin against nature. They are utterly s-xualized.

“As for the professors, many recognize that there is a deep-down problem, but many continue to play the game. They are all Marxizing, if not Marxists. They teach as though all authority is stifling, all tradition oppressive. Evolution rules. As for the students, many more of them than one would think are yearning for something, but they are no longer looking to their “university” for truth. If they want a “Degree,” it is only to get a job, and if they seek a good “Degree,” it is only to get a better-paying job. Rarely will they discuss ideas.”

So what are the CAUSES of the university being turned into such a purely utilitarian processor of information to serve the established system? The Professor says, “ The basic cause is the loss of God, resulting from several centuries of war on the Incarnation. Then education no longer means providing a truth or morality to live by, but rather developing one’s potential to be different and better than anyone else. Into the vacuum left by Truth moves pop culture and the Frankfurt School, with their liberation from all authority. Into the vacuum left by God moves the State, which sees “universities” as a source of technocrats and engineers. Absolutes are of no interest, except one: absolute skepticism.”

As for the REMEDIES the Professor says, “These “universities” can hardly get out of the trap they have fallen into. To learn something genuinely useful a boy is better off at home, or talking to priests or going on a Retreat. Faithful Catholics must do things for themselves, and band together to re-build institutions of their own, starting maybe with summer schools. The Humanities must be restored, because they deal with the basics of human existence, what is right, good and true. The natural sciences, specific and derivative, must remain secondary. They cannot take priority of the Humanities. Let parents send their boys to these “universities” to get a job, but not to learn anything truly useful.”

“The loss of God” – all is said.

Kyrie eleison.

Conciliar “Theologian” – II

Conciliar “Theologian” – II posted in Eleison Comments on June 12, 2010

When last week “Eleison Comments” laid out six errors of one of the leading theologians of Vatican II, Fr. Marie-Dominique Chenu, it said that the order of the errors had been changed from the original order in Si Si No No, and it suggested that thereby hangs a tale. That tale is the disastrous dethroning of the mind by modern times.

In Si Si No No, Sentimentalism ranked first among the errors. Then came Subjectivism, Historicism, the Turn to Man (Anthropocentrism), Evolutionism and Immoralism. To start with Sentimentalism is to start with man as one finds him today, i.e. wallowing in his feelings. Here are two examples amidst hundreds, or thousands: in religion, “God is much too nice to send a single soul to Hell”; in politics, “It is not patriotic to question who was behind 9/11.”

Eleison Comments” chose rather to rank the errors in order not of immediacy but of depth. Then Anthropocentrism in the sense of turning away from God comes first, because turning away from God is at the root of all sin and error. Next come the three errors attacking the mind, Subjectivism, Historicism and their consequence, Evolutionism. They too come before Sentimentalism because – and here is the interesting point – only after the rightful king has been dethroned can the usurper take his place. Only after the mind is disabled can feelings take over. Ranking last on both lists is Immoralism, or the denial of right and wrong, because all disorder in the soul and mind ends up in disorder in action.

To grasp the natural primacy of the mind over feelings, a primacy which for many a modern soul is not obvious, let us resort to a comparison with a sailing-ship. If the captain by deliberately letting go of the rudder leaves his ship at the mercy of wind and wave until eventual shipwreck, nevertheless whenever he chooses to take the rudder in hand again, it belongs to the nature of the rudder to enable him to steer the ship, and by making good use of wind and wave to reach port. Similarly if a human being by deliberately letting go of his reason leaves his soul at the mercy of feelings and passions, adrift towards eternal Hell, it nevertheless belongs to the nature of his mind, whenever he chooses to re-activate it, to guide him to Heaven, however precarious at first may be his reason’s command of his passions and feelings.

Then how is a man to put his mind back on its throne? By turning back to God, because it was his turning away from God that let loose the dethroning of his mind in the first place, since to turn away from God he soon after had to begin dismantling his reason. And how does a man most easily turn back to God? Let him start with one “Ave Maria,” let him move on to a few, then to a decade of the Rosary, and finally to five decades a day. If he does that, he will begin to think again.

Mother of God, save our minds!

Kyrie eleison.