Thursday, May 27, 2010

Benedict XVI on Education--and Liturgy

The Italian Bishops decided to make education a focus for the next few years.

Benedict XVI had a few words which are germane. And they fit in a couple of situations.

He suggested going to the roots so as to find "adequate responses" to the educational challenge.

"One main root is, it seems to me, a false concept of man's autonomy," the Holy Father said. This concept calls for man to develop himself by and for himself, "without impositions from others, who can assist in his self-development, but who cannot enter into the process."

"That's why so-called anti-authoritarian education is not education but rather a rejection of education."

That "autonomy" is reflected in the anti-authoritarianism of liturgical praxis in this country.

This concept is erroneous, the Pontiff explained, because man's self is defined in relation to others. "It is created for dialogue and for communion," he said.

"Only the encounter with the 'you' and with the 'we' opens the 'I' to himself," the Pope said....

"So a first point seems to me to be this one," he stated, "to overcome this false idea of man's autonomy as an 'I' complete in itself."

OK. Martin Bieber, I/Thou. Yah.

But the next part is, curiously, co-incidental with what we posted earlier today.

Benedict XVI pointed to a second root in skepticism and relativism, "or," he said, "with simpler and clearer words, in the exclusion of the two sources that orient the human journey."

The sources, he indicated, are [human] nature and revelation. "But nature," the Holy Father observed, "is considered today as a purely mechanical thing, and because of this, no type of orientation comes from it."

Meanwhile revelation, he noted, is seen "either as a moment of historical development, and therefore relative, just as any historical and cultural development -- or, it is said, perhaps there was revelation, but it doesn't offer content, only motivation."

"And," the Pontiff warned, "if these two sources are blocked, nature and revelation, then the third source as well, history, ceases to offer guidance because it becomes nothing more than a conglomeration of arbitrary, momentary cultural decisions that serve for nothing for the present and the future."

IOW, B-16 posits that history is NOT a pile of pickup sticks...'arbitrary, momentary, which serve nothing for the present and the future.' In other words, history has meaning and value.

Earlier, we suggested:

The well-educated individual knows that history and historical practices actually have value in se.

...with specific regard to liturgical praxis.

That brings to mind the concept of the liturgical 'communion.' Hmmmmmm.

Seems to me that Benedict could be speaking to "Liturgical Gurus" in some Dioceses.


Grim said...

Hm. I'm going to need to consider this concept for a bit. This Pope is a very smart man; he touches several issues that have been bothering me in a few words.

Dad29 said...

He always does.