Monday, September 9, 2013
Is Catholicism Like Science?
Now nobody says that if you do so then you have made a choice to stop thinking. That you are just being told what to think and you no longer use reason or intelligence. We know that scientists use their intellect a lot. While there is a ton of accepted scientific knowledge there are many more questions that are not settled. We are not even close to having settled everything. Even if we did there would still be the matter of applying it to your life. We would still have to think a lot.
So what about Catholicism? When you become Catholic you accept the church as a source of truth in your life. First of all, you accept what Catholics have settled on. Sure those findings are not often considered infallible but you can't credibly call yourself a Catholic if you don't believe abortion is wrong or Jesus rose from the dead. So practically speaking you have to accept a lot. What you are really accepting is not a bunch of random facts but you are accepting the validity of God revealing Himself through the church and specifically through the popes. That truth arrived at in the past through this method is going to be trustworthy. You also as accepting that truth arrived at in the future through this method will be trustworthy. So there is any number of doctrines future popes will teach and you don't know what but you plan to ascent to these as well because you think the method is sound.
Now you will get many people saying you have stopped thinking. That you are just being told what to think and you no longer use reason or intelligence. Do those people think theologians don't use their intellect? You wonder. If you are Catholic you know while there are many theological questions settled there is much more that is still being discovered. Even if we settled everything there would still be the matter of each person applying it to their own lives. We would still have to think a lot.
I think the parallels are huge. You just have to get your mind around the idea that false thinking needs to be corrected. In one environment it is corrected by experimentation. In the other environment it is corrected by the church condemning false teaching. The rest works basically the same. Yet somehow people get this idea that one involves reason and the other does not. It is laughable to anyone who actually does theology. But it is not funny because such a lie blocks people from the great joys of Catholicism. Literally the greatest joy in this life and the next.