Pope Francis a liberal free thinker? Don’t kid yourself
See original/source content: http://www.theguardian.
Dismissing St Thomas Aquinas with his customary succinctness, Bertrand Russell said there was “little of the true philosophic spirit” in the Catholic church’s greatest philosopher. It was not that he wasn’t clever, but that he lacked the willingness to follow an argument wherever it led. Catholic dogma determined in advance where he could and could not go.
Aquinas “already knows the truth; it is declared in the Catholic faith. If he can find apparently rational arguments for some parts of the faith, so much the better; if he cannot, he need only fall back on revelation. The finding of arguments for a conclusion already given in advance is not philosophy, but special pleading.”
Anti-Catholicism is still a residual force in Britain and a great mistake of secularists who fall into the prejudice is to imagine that the church’s dogmas are as dumb as the blabbering of the worst type of knuckle-dragging, know-nothing Protestant fundamentalist. Reading the pope’s encyclical on the care of our common home ought to provide an antidote. It shows, if nothing else, why apparently intelligent men and women can lose themselves in the richness of Catholic theology.
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