Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Aesthetics? Historicity? or Faith?

Here's the money graf from a very interesting essay by Milliner in First Things:

Either the entire sweep of the Creed is all just a beautiful story valuable only for the sentiment or action it can inspire (the thinner strands of narrative theology); or each detail, however insignificant, must be verified or discarded according to standards foreign to the biblical accounts (certain breeds of fundamentalism). G.K. Chesterton referred to the first error as the “aesthetics, or mere feeling, which is now allowed to usurp where it has no rights at all, to wreck reason with pragmatism and morals with anarchy.” The second he called “the temptation of the professors to treat mythologies too much as theologies; as things thoroughly thought out and seriously held.” I would not be the first to argue that both errors are two sides of the same Enlightenment coin: Refusing to accept that miraculous events can occur or submitting every distant detail of such events to dated standards of historical scholarship. Instead, Christian truth fulfills and transcends these shortsighted categories, containing what Hans Urs von Balthasar called “its own interior authenticity,” to which aesthetics and historicism need both submit.

This is related to a brief article in today's news wherein it is disclosed that US atheists, in congress, have declared that Science must exterminate Religion.

Good luck with that, folks. As GKChesterton once said, "Nobody will die for a syllogism."

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