Friday, July 31, 2020
Friday, July 24, 2020
Wednesday, July 22, 2020
Well, yikes, as the kids say. Hell hath no fury like David Bentley Hart with his pride hurt. At Eclectic Orthodoxy, replying to of his book . In response, I’ll say only a little about the invective and focus mainly on the substance. Since there’s almost none there, that will save lots of time. And since Catholic Herald gave me only 1200 words to address the enormous pile of sophistries that is his book, I would in any case like to take this opportunity to expand on some of the points I could make in only a cursory way in the review.
Monday, July 20, 2020
The Week’s The Hill the “experts” are exasperated that people aren’t responding to their warnings about the virus with sufficient urgency. the state of the “American character,” citing an emergency physician’s wife he knows whose friends ignore her frantic pleas on Facebook to take COVID-19 more seriously.
Well, of course they aren’t, because so many experts, journalists, and politicians have, on this subject, proven themselves to be completely full of it.
As you know, academic life has largely gone online this year. My own classes at Pasadena City College this fall will be entirely online.
Friday, July 17, 2020
Monday, July 13, 2020
My review of David Bentley Hart’s That All Shall Be Saved: Heaven, Hell, and Universal Salvation appears in the latest issue of Catholic Herald. You can read it online here. (It’s behind a paywall, but when you click on the link you will see instructions telling you how to register for free access.)
Here are some earlier posts that explore in greater detail some of the issues raised in the review:
Wednesday, July 8, 2020
The “problem of other minds” goes like this. I have direct access to my own thoughts and experiences, but not to yours. I can perceive only your body and behavior. So how do I know you really have any thoughts and experiences? Maybe you merely behave as if you had them, but in reality you are a “zombie” in , devoid of conscious awareness. And maybe this is true of everyone other than me. How do I know that any minds at all exist other than my own?
Saturday, July 4, 2020
Patriotism involves a special love for and reverence toward one’s own country. These days it is often dismissed as sentimental, unsophisticated, or even bigoted. In fact it is a moral virtue and its absence is a vice. Aquinas explains the basic reason:
A man becomes a debtor to others in diverse ways in accord with the diverse types of their excellence and the diverse benefits that he receives from them. In both these regards, God occupies the highest place, since He is the most excellent of all and the first principle of both our being and our governance. But in second place, the principles of our being and governance are our parents and our country, by whom and in which we are born and governed. And so, after God, a man is especially indebted to his parents and to his country. Hence, just as [the virtue of] religion involves venerating God, so, at the second level, [the virtue of] piety involves venerating one’s parents and country. Now the veneration of one’s parents includes venerating all of one’s blood relatives... On the other hand, the veneration of one’s country includes the veneration of one’s fellow citizens and of all the friends of one’s country. (Summa Theologiae II-II.101.1, Freddoso translation)