THE ABSOLUTE TRUTH.
THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS AND
[…] Scalfari seems to ask the Pope if you can admit a certain relativism of truth. The Pope could argue with relativism, as did Pope Benedict, and instead recognizes that there is a God relate. Of course the Pope's words should not be considered in conflict with Pope Benedict and as an endorsement of relativism, which is a serious defect in the thinking and moral behavior, for which "relativized" not absolute in the sense that the legitimate Pope, but in the sense of making an idol of God in the service of their desires or otherwise relativizzarlo man, as if the man is above God […].
When the Pope speaks, should take the high tone, above the cawing of birds. Editrice Vaticana, as we know, published the contents of some talks by Pope Eugenio Scalfari. Some expressions of the Pope in this circumstance caused the time a part of the Catholic world concerns, apprehension and wonder, while the secular world gleefully took the opportunity to present an unfair Pontiff near its positions. I would like to limit myself only to express how, in my opinion, should be interpreted in fact some words of Pope, to judge of their continuity with the perennial teaching of sound reason, Church and faith.
It may surprise you, first, in the letter the Pope wrote to Scalfari, his statement: "I would not call, even for those who believe, of "absolute" truth ", when we know how this expression is traditional not only in philosophy but also in the language of the Magisterium, for God or the divine truth; but to understand what it means to say the Pope, we read the following words: no truth to the "absolute", "In the sense that all is what is untied, what is lacking in any report. Now, the truth, according to Christian faith, is the love of God for us in Jesus Christ. Therefore, the truth is a relationship!”.
It should be noted here that the Pope is not speaking the truth in general or of truth as such, but of divine truth, which in God is the same love (1). So we have to dispel a suspicion of voluntarism that might emerge from a superficial reading of the words of the Pope.
What in this context is the heart of Pope Francis is reminding us that God is in relationship with the world, with the world that He created to love freely and this mainly through the mystery of the Incarnation. So also our relationships with Him, different in each of us, means that the same divine truth is relationships with us in different ways for each of us.
For this reason, and in this sense the truth of God is God's relationship with the world: God knows the world; the truth is intentional relation of a subject to an object: the conformity of intellect and thing, as St. Thomas, although in the case of God is he who must adapt to things, but they are things that are appropriate to the designer and creator thought that God has for them.
But God's relationship with the world is love, for God loves the world and God in truth and love, as mentioned, are identified in the absolute simplicity of the divine essence. The Pope wishes to focus attention on this issue and in that sense here rejects the term "absolute truth".
We can not imagine fact that the Pope does not continue to treat with traditional language of God in himself as the Absolute and the Absolute Truth, because the term "absolute", joined by a few centuries in the language of philosophy and theology, may be synonymous with "divine", although it is true that not everything that is absolute is divine, because a finite being can be absolute to look for another and relative. But God is absolute in every point of view: is absolutely absolute (2).
It is reasonable and necessary to distinguish truth from about absolute truth and absolute truth. It would be wrong, as it seems to assume Eugenio Scalfari, that there are only relative truths. This is the error of relativism, seen for example in the philosophy of Auguste Comte (SEC. Nineteenth), who says: "Everything is relative, and this is the only absolute principle " (3). Truth or relative can be said in relation to the object or in relation to the subject. If I say "today is Wednesday" and it is actually Wednesday, This truth is relative to the current Wednesday, past which that statement, in relation to the object (what day is it?), ceases to exist. In fact, if I say "today is Wednesday", while it's Thursday, are false in. However, if you consider the person who makes the claim, this may or may appear to be true only in relation to the subject, but be false by an objective point of view, or because the subject is in good faith, wrong without knowing it (the so-called "subjective truth", "Invincible ignorance") or because it is in bad faith, that is opposed to the truth voluntarily ("Ignorance sliced or guilty"). Note that, from the moral point of view, In the first case the person who sins is innocent before God, is guilty while in the second case.
Thus, for instance, it is not difficult to show that from the point of view of the moral law sodomy is sin objectively; however, given the current shameful campaign of exaltation of this sin, it is not easy to know whether that particular homosexual knows or does not know sin. In this sense, the Pope uttered that famous phrase: "Who am I to judge?». Since, however, the truth sets the object, we are all obliged to seek the objective truth, that is the real as it is in itself, but it may happen that what seems true is not, for which we are deceived or deceiving us. And what or why we err inadvertently or guilty because we close to the truth. In the first case we apologize, in the second we deserve to be reprimanded.
Here you have a lot of importance to the principle of consciousness. When the Pope says that even the atheist must follow their conscience, the Pope to approve this atheism (you imagine an atheist Pope?). Francis Pope does not teach that the individual consciousness or subjective is the absolute source of truth, but evidently refers to the principle of freedom of conscience (or religion) teaching of the Council, which reminds us that even those who err in good faith, However, you must follow their conscience and is innocent before God [See the previous article on this subject by Ariel S. Levi Gualdo, which].
For this reason, the State and the Church should allow the wanderer an area of freedom, prejudice of course the basic needs of the common good. In fact there are core values for human society, whose breach is inexcusable and, therefore, in any case must be prevented or repaired, is or is not in good faith or wandering the criminal. It is a principle taught by St. Thomas Aquinas, when he says that the erroneous conscience obliges (4), but at the same time it is clear that the good Aquinas admits to the absolute limits of tolerance.
The subjective consciousness of innocence or of its own right, even if objectively unfounded and unintentionally, is of great consolation and comfort, when one is isolated and misunderstood in a hostile environment, persecuted by unjust laws, betrayed by friends, oppressed by superiors, despised by his subjects, slandered by liars, defamed by malicious or ill-treated by bullies because of truth and justice.
This awareness that such tests do without the consent and support of the human, is that which characterizes the strength and freedom of Heroes, saints and martyrs, both in the civil history of the Church in the. In this sense, Christ proclaims blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, and to his disciples: "You will be hated by all for my name's sake" [Mt 10.22]. Instead, who carefully avoids slyly or not to be hated by the world for the sake of the world, so as not to look bad in front of him or to have no trouble, has a guilty conscience and self-righteous, or at least he's a coward and not worthy disciple of Christ, as the divine Teacher says: "If anyone is ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, will be ashamed of him the Son of Man, when he comes in his Father's glory with the holy angels " [MC 8,38].
It is useful in this question of objectivity (absoluteness) - Subjectivity (relativity) the truth should also mention the corresponding distinction between truth or epistemological relation to truth as an act of the intellect and truth ontology as the real thing object of knowledge. The relation of truth, which refers to the subject – the truth as a relationship, in the words of the Pope – itself is absolute and immutable, even if the object is mutable: it is true that today is Wednesday, and I say that today is Wednesday, this proposition, in relation to Wednesday which is passed, will remain true forever (true judgment), that is, in absolute, although on Wednesday (object of judgment) increased. Instead, if the object is mutable, the affirmation, just to be true, must change according to changing object, so in relation to the object and the truth is silent on the change of the object. If you arrive on Thursday and I still say that today is Wednesday, evidently false in.
The truths are so changeable, instead the absolute truth – human or divine – is immutable, because by definition it is the truth which does not change neither the object, nor, consequently, subject or grade: are objective truths, Fundamental and Universal's own reason and faith. In this sense it is said that the truth is “one”, otherwise the negation of the principle of non-contradiction.
Speaking of relative truth, The Pope, however, specify that it will not support any subjectivism. In fact, tell the truth "subjective" (as we have defined above) does not necessarily mean subjectivism. The fact is the alleged arbitrary subjectivism and individualism of the individual to be subject to the rule of truth, when instead, as I said, the rule of truth is the object (which can be something of one's self, this means nothing). In subjectivism, the truth is no longer a single, but each one builds its own “truth” as they wish and as it suits them. The truth may be much in the way of many things that are true, but not as said, from the point of view of the relationship of truth.
To understand this, we must remember the distinction I made above. Indeed, from the definition that I just gave, that subjectivity is given, when the subject individual claims to be the absolute rule of truth, What evidently alienissima the intentions and the words of the Pope. Subjectivism you, for instance, the idealistic ego solipsism absolute and all-encompassing, considered as the only source of absolute truth and any other truth (5).
It is true that the Bible does not speak of "absolute" as a divine attribute. There is not even the word (6). Even St. Thomas considers God as the Absolut, neither speaks veritas absoluta. In vain among the divine attributes listed in the Summa Theologica we would seek the attribute of the absoluteness. Among other things, the time of Thomas just gives the concrete "absolute", but not the abstract "absoluteness".
Conversely l 'Absolute for Aquinas is a normal attribute to the finite realities substantial, formal or material. For instance, in the field of logic, for him the abstract universal is a absolutum, as it is timeless, free and independent (by-soluble) individuals who are subject. To understand what it is the absolute, is useful to consider the etymology of the word, which Aquinas closely follows. Sol with that in the nineteenth century theology, especially in German Idealism, is the exploit of the "Absolute". For God, we begin to talk of how '' Absolute '. The tendency of Hegel's monistic solve any real in the Absolute, for which there is only the Absolute, everything is Absolute, everything is in the Absolute, the Absolute is everything (immanentismo), because all is One. It is precisely the Absolute One.
For Hegel, the "other" from the Absolute, outside of himself, relativizzerebbe the Absolute, because, to stand out from the Absolute, should have something that the Absolute has no. But that is not an Absolute Everything, is no longer absolute. Also break the unity of the One-All. For Hegel, however, that escapes instead ,this "other" from the Absolute, may well exist as a body relative to the Absolute ("Being for participation", as St. Thomas), which is precisely the condition of creaturely, just as in the biblical doctrine of God the Creator of the world, necessarily external to God (Opus ad extra), For everything that's in God is God. Moreover, Hegel does not include the set up does not break the divine unity, because it's not on a par with God in competition with him, but infinitely below (divine transcendence), as picture, effect or sign of divinity.
For Hegel instead, nothing exists outside of the Absolute, and as though he does not give up even admit its, here is that for him, since the relative can not be out of the Absolute, the Absolute itself is conceived as including within itself its, ie the world. God becomes the world and the world becomes God. That is ultimately the Hegelian Absolute is not a true absolute, independent of its, but paradoxically, just to be absolutely, for God, home in his own divine essence the world, according to the famous assertion: "God is not God without the world".
For Hegel, we can not give an absolute pure, an Absolute absolutely simple, but the Absolute itself is relative to the world, is "historicized", though then God is, from the point of view of Hegel, to be relevant only to Himself, because the world itself is God coincides with the divine essence. But this obviously removes the distinction between God and the world and you fall into pantheism.
We would of course out of the way if we interpreted in this sense the words of the Pope, who knows by faith and reason that God, in his infinite perfection, could exist even without the world, He being the Absolute, Infinity, l'Eternal, the most perfect Being, and therefore completely self-sufficient. An "Absolute" itself on the world might not be a true Absolute, because report says dependence that with which it is in relation. The world depends on God, but God does not depend on the world. God's relationship to the world in the sense that it created, knows him and loves him, but not in the sense that it depends on the world. Now, as seen, independence is the character of the absoluteness. If in fact, with the creation and even more with the Incarnation, God has placed in relationship to the world, it is simply because he wanted to free love in the world, It follows necessarily either or "logically" from the divine essence, as Hegel believed.
The question of ' “Absolute ", Kant ignored dall'illuminista, comes to the fore in the romantic philosophy of Fichte, Schelling and Hegel. But for them the Absolute is not what he meant St. Thomas. For these, from-solutm it means rather loose, free, independent, autosussistente, self-sufficient, who sits on their own, things that might be appropriate for God. But in fact, in Thomas, as I said, it is a divine attribute, logical and ontological category but a moral analogue. If we want, "Absolute" also means "loose", but not with the negative nuance that seems to possess in the words of Pope, because the 'Absolute may have ties made: Universal, as in itself independent from the individual, in fact this is in the individual (one of many). God, though independent of man, has wanted to bond with the man with a covenant of love.
We also think all ' “sacramental absolution ". "Acquitted" comes from Absolute, past participle of release, which means here dissolve ties that make a slave or prisoner, that is, the bonds of sin. Who is absolved from sins is free, intact and happy. Vice versa, as mentioned, is related that does not fit with the divine essence, because its employee and says God clearly does not depend on any. Only in the mystery of the Trinity are divine relations, the divine Persons, but fails to say dependence, but we speak of "relationship" only source in the equality of the one divine nature. The Son, for instance, originate with the Father, but it is not dependent on the Father as the bottom depends on the upper, or the effect of the cause, but only because it is generated by the Father, that is equal to the common divine nature.
The relationship here is not an accident, but it is subsistent, because it is a divine Person, for which the person RELATED TO THE identical in nature with the divine Person relazionante. Therefore God is the Absolute: God and the Trinity are one absolute Being, God himself. What if in the Bible we find the attribute of the absoluteness, However, attributes are equivalent. The absoluteness in a sense summarizes them all: freedom, independence, goodness, eternity, the totality, Infinity, the majesty, perfection, the immutabilità. The attribute of the absoluteness retains its value even if in fact God has created a world, became incarnate and therefore has a relationship of knowledge and love for him. For God, creating the world, does not change its nature, that is in itself the Absolute. But it is clear, as has been said - and this does the Pope knows this - that God created the world freely, utmost freedom, says the Vatican Council. He could, if he wanted to, Also do not create it. God did not need us, wanted for our sake in Christ begging for our love and ask for a glass of water to the Samaritan woman. "Dio, as St. Augustine says, who created you without you, does not save you without you ".
Hence the dignity, some, but also the contingency of the world and the existence of God is absolutely necessary. If there were no God, the world would not hesitate. While the world may not exist, God can not exist, because it is Being itself absolute, is what accounts for the existence of the world: is therefore absolutely Necessary. E-il must be, as he called the great metaphysical Muslim Avicenna, often mentioned by St. Thomas.
The world does not depend on God for logical deduction required, as the properties of the triangle depend from the essence of the triangle, as Spinoza thought. This implies the existence of love in God, selfless love, generous, merciful, of free choice. The set does not derive from the divine essence, but is a result of divine will. We do not say that the properties of a triangle depend on the love triangle because, but simply a logical deduction from the essence of the triangle. This is not how the world comes from God, because it comes from the essence of nothing but, by virtue of his wisdom, his freedom, of his goodness and omnipotence.
Eugenio Scalfari seems to ask the Pope if you can admit a certain relativism of truth. The Pope could argue with relativism, as did Pope Benedict, and instead recognizes that there is a God relate. Of course the Pope's words should not be considered in conflict with Pope Benedict and as an endorsement of relativism, which is a serious defect in the thinking and moral behavior, for which "relativized" not absolute in the sense that the legitimate Pope, but in the sense of making an idol of God in the service of their desires or otherwise relativizzarlo man, as if the man is above God.
It is clear, as the Pope says, that God, order to be in relationship with us and because we can position ourselves in relationship with Him, is presented to us from time to time in the manner suitable for each of us. But it is one thing to say that God stands in relation to each of us in ways related to each of us and it is one thing to deny God's absoluteness inherent in his divine essence, to make a product or a man or a contingent fact of history and culture. It 'clear that on this point the Pope Francis is in total agreement with Pope Benedict. And they will have no difficulty to subscribe to the words of Pope Francis Scalfari, understood as the Pope understands them and tried to explain.
There may in fact have a healthy relativism, when one recognizes as its what is actually required and it is not an absolute. But as yet there is relativism deleterious, so there is also an equally deleterious absolutism, that excludes the other, exacerbates conflicts, and creates unresolvable dualisms, opposing positions against the so absolute, that seems impossible any way for dialogue and reconciliation. And’ the tragedy of ideology. This is certainly what he means by concluding this part of his letter: "You have well understood the terms and, perhaps, to exit from the confines of an opposition… absolute, reset in depth the issue. I think this is now absolutely necessary to engage in the dialogue and constructive expressed the hope that the beginning of this I say ".
Interestingly, this statement turns up twice ' “absolute ", once as an adjective and another adverb. The concept of "absolute" it is in our own everyday language. Its application depends on the theological meaning of the term analog, which lends itself both to indicate the world, is to describe God. Therefore noOn it is doubtful that the Pope knows everything. But he believes in that Absolute, do not confuse the extreme and foolishly and gnostically, in a false "synthesis", positions in contrast (being with non-being, truth with falsehood, the good with the bad), such as the Hegelian dialectic or pantheism of Emanuele Severino, but in his infinite, beneficial and absolute power of peace and reconciliation unites souls in the absolute truth of eternal bliss.
Fontanellato, 8 November 2014
WHEN IN FILOFOSIA AND THEOLOGY IN
Relativism BECOME HEALTHY AND CHRISTIAN
talking in public with one of my teachers …
Dear Father John,
Since the three of us "guys" from the island of Patmos are long in the crosshairs of certain "traditionalists" and “sedevacantists catatonic”, wishing I could anticiparti their lamentations on the site Pizzi&Lace, Straight&Chiroteche, Latin did not know that I Love You … and so. And also what if your article is built on the master “philosophy of the day” so dear to our brother Antonio Livi, then your deep sense of Church, pastoral, theological and metaphysical. Even despite, contaci: repeat what I have said and written, That's why this time I would like to anticipate, so trite and repetitive are their arguments …
… me too, as you may remember, I was accused by them so heavy. When in fact the journals of gay organizations began to stand out the phrase "Who am I to judge?», while pederasts ideological sentenziavano: "The Pope has opened the world's gay", I replied with my article calling for the correct reception of the sentence of the Holy Father.
Certain, Perhaps the Holy Father expressed a concept devoid of depth explanations, as indeed we often do when we all take for granted certain obviousness, that in this world are not that obvious and least of all discounted. That's why I pointed out that my writing: «The Holy Father expressed a gospel truth: In fact, none of us can judge the most intimate and profound consciousness of man that God alone can read and judge accordingly». From this was born the obviousness of the expression of the Holy Father: "Who am I to judge?». Sentence but, journalists, intellectuals and politicians on the payroll of the culture of gender, lack the rudiments of basic vocabulary and catechetical Christian, was changed to a completely different meaning expressive, Finally upside down in a completely anti-Christian.
At that time I was attacked by the usual suspects corifeo with amenities like: "Progressista ... vagum Modernist"…
… Now it's up to you again, so get ready to read: "The Father John Cavalcoli climbing on mirrors to understand and mitigate the word" heretical "in this “antiPope”». While the truth is that you recepisci and broadcast in consciousness, science and truth of the Holy Father's words to mean what they say and not for what they do not mean and do not intend to say. Certain, should always be avoided mangled sentences and phrases that might sound ambiguous to most ears willing to hear and incorporate a Christian language. It is in the latter case that we are called to carry out our pastoral ministry in pastoral care and theologians, which is certainly not that of "scrambling", but remember what they mean in our lexicon certain expressions. What we need to remember the ultra-secularists as to certain "traditionalists" who similar way have also lost the proper Christian vocabulary, enough to sit in judgment of conscience “Collective” the College of Bishops in communion with Peter, seizing alleged heresies, even in the most solemn acts of the supreme magisterium, for example, those of the Second Vatican Council, they shamefully defined “heretical” and “apostate” in the name of an unspecified purity Catholic, behind which lurks in truth the fearsome queen of all the seven deadly sins, the holding as a solid column all the other six: the Superbia.
That's why I find this extremely precious your article and I feel it is our duty to return, occasionally, on certain details, as you taught me to do along with Antonio Livi. No coincidence that we have on purpose to make life on the Island of Patmos ecclesial and pastoral theology according to the doctrine and the perennial teaching of the Church, certainly not according to our subjective humoral. And may the grace of God, to which we wish to be always open — which passes not least through the Magisterium of the Church and the Apostolic authority to his obedience — save us from the formidable Queen: that pride which unfortunately is devastating circles increasingly closed and self-referential Pizzi&Lace, Straight&Chiroteche, Latin did not know that I Love You … and in that way not only aberrant, but worse evil, present themselves as saviors of the Church fomenting daily contempt for the Holy Father, which is not perfect, You can like it or not — and it is quite legitimate that like it or not — but how many times we repeated and how we will never tire of repeating: He is Peter, whether you like it or not like it. And it is a truth of faith dogma that underlies the founding of the Church built on Peter the mandate given to him by Christ Himself. That's why in some cases the pleasure or the pleasure is not really relevant in the most exquisitely philosophical and theological term. Why is there, both in philosophy and in theology, a healthy Christian relativism.
A fraternal embrace and a priestly prayer to remember me to the Blessed Virgin Mary of Fontanellato.
Ariel S. Levi Gualdo
(1) It is known thesis of classical theology, for example in S.Tommaso, that knowledge is identical to loving God. Famous is the dogma of the Council of Florence 1442 for which the divine essence "all is one, unless it is on the opposition of the divine persons " (With God all things are one , ubi non overlooked relations oppositio, Denz. 1330).
(2) For example, the human person has an absolute value in the image of God, but has a relative value as finite creature, and above all, fragile and sinful.
(3) One has to wonder how it is possible, If everything is relative, there is then an absolute principle. This shows how even the most driven relativists can not do without some absolute, which then will not be the real one (God) but the absolutism of the value of.
(4) See Part, I-II, q. 19. a. 6
(5) Like for example in the philosophy of Fichte.
(6) But this means nothing: the word "person" does not exist, yet the mystery of the Trinity is one of the fundamental teachings of the Bible.