Thursday, September 25, 2014

On Whose Authority?

Pope Francis has been speaking out against Islamic extremists, claiming that using their religion to justify violence as they do is wrong. "Authentic religious spirit is being perverted by extremist groups" he says:

All believers must be particularly vigilant so that, in living out with conviction our religious and ethical code, we may always express the mystery we intend to honor. This means that all those forms which present a distorted use of religion must be firmly refuted as false [...]

I'm glad the Pope is speaking out in this way, trying to use his influence against what is a serious problem.  But why does he think anyone should listen? The President of Venezuela is free to speak out against American foreign policy, but we're free to ignore him.  I dare say Muslims who support terror feel even less attachment to the Catholic Church.

The Pope speaks as if there's a general, agreed-upon thing called religion which has rules everyone must follow, rather than specific religions each with rules of their own--indeed, separate religions that are mutually exclusive.  The Pope is an authority on his own religion (and even there I'm sure many Catholics disagree with him), but how does he have any authority to tell other religions how to act?  If he wants to say other religions are false I can understand that, but to seemingly accept these religions and then interpret what they mean I don't quite get.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yet he does it and it has some success

3:51 AM, September 25, 2014  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What success? And isn't his success a sub rosa admission he doesn't believe what he professes to believe?

9:18 AM, September 25, 2014  
Anonymous Lawrence King said...

Maybe he's following Presidents GWBush and Obama, both of whom have frequently declared that true Islam wants peace, and that terrorists are not true Muslims?

That being said, there can be a certain theological logic behind the pope's words: (1) There is by definition only one God, creator of the universe. (2) Since Muslims, Christians, Jews, philosophical monotheists, and other monotheists profess to worship this God, they all worship the same God as each other. (3) The greatest common denominator among all these religions is philosophical monotheism, which asserts only such things about God as can be demonstrated by human reason. In other words, although Judaism, Christianity, and Islam each believe that God has revealed certain things to them ("revelation"), such revelation can never contradict the core knowledge about God accessible by human reason. (4) It can be shown by human reason that God would never command humans to kill other humans in his name. (Conclusion) Therefore, such a claim is alien to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

This was the logic offered by Pope Benedict in his Regensburg Address in 2006. Although Francis rarely spells out his arguments in detail as Benedict did, perhaps this was his intention as well.

That being said, I certainly agree that this won't convince anyone who doesn't already believe it, since such people presumably disagree with premises 3, 4, and possibly 2 of the argument above.

9:51 AM, September 25, 2014  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Law school has ruined you, man.

5:36 PM, September 25, 2014  
Blogger oakleyses said...

louis vuitton, michael kors outlet, coach purses, michael kors outlet, tory burch outlet, nike shoes, kate spade outlet, michael kors outlet, polo ralph lauren outlet, prada handbags, louboutin outlet, oakley sunglasses cheap, longchamp handbags, oakley sunglasses, longchamp outlet, true religion jeans, coach outlet, michael kors outlet, oakley sunglasses, michael kors outlet, air max, polo ralph lauren outlet, true religion jeans, longchamp handbags, gucci outlet, louboutin, jordan shoes, tiffany and co, burberry outlet, prada outlet, louis vuitton handbags, louboutin, tiffany and co, ray ban sunglasses, louis vuitton outlet, louis vuitton outlet, ray ban sunglasses, burberry outlet, christian louboutin shoes, michael kors outlet, kate spade handbags, coach factory outlet, louis vuitton outlet stores, coach outlet store online, chanel handbags, air max, nike free

7:38 PM, November 07, 2014  
Blogger oakleyses said...

sac louis vuitton, sac louis vuitton, mulberry, air max pas cher, michael kors pas cher, louis vuitton uk, michael kors, polo lacoste, sac hermes, nike tn, longchamp, converse pas cher, nike free, nike trainers, oakley pas cher, nike roshe run, hollister, ray ban pas cher, polo ralph lauren, nike roshe, air jordan, ray ban sunglasses, sac longchamp, timberland, true religion outlet, vanessa bruno, barbour, vans pas cher, north face, nike free pas cher, air force, lululemon, nike air max, air max, new balance pas cher, hollister, north face, sac burberry, hogan outlet, sac guess, abercrombie and fitch, louboutin, true religion outlet, michael kors, ralph lauren, air max, louis vuitton, nike blazer

7:40 PM, November 07, 2014  
Blogger oakleyses said...

wedding dresses, herve leger, lululemon outlet, canada goose jackets, nfl jerseys, canada goose, babyliss pro, mcm handbags, canada goose, canada goose uk, ugg australia, ghd, giuseppe zanotti, longchamp, uggs outlet, ferragamo shoes, nike huarache, canada goose outlet, north face outlet, soccer jerseys, celine handbags, hollister, ugg, bottega veneta, instyler, mont blanc, valentino shoes, jimmy choo outlet, insanity workout, canada goose, marc jacobs, ugg boots, ugg boots, new balance shoes, reebok outlet, abercrombie and fitch, beats by dre, chi flat iron, asics running shoes, nike roshe run, rolex watches, mac cosmetics, soccer shoes, north face jackets, vans shoes, ugg pas cher, p90x, birkin bag

7:41 PM, November 07, 2014  
Blogger oakleyses said...

moncler, vans, air max, iphone 6 cases, converse shoes, pandora charms, timberland boots, wedding dresses, lancel, moncler, supra shoes, moncler, ray ban, parajumpers, moncler, hollister, gucci, thomas sabo, oakley, rolex watches, swarovski crystal, converse, pandora charms, karen millen, montre homme, juicy couture outlet, moncler outlet, ralph lauren, links of london, hollister clothing store, louis vuitton, pandora jewelry, hollister, baseball bats, canada goose, louboutin, air max, juicy couture outlet, swarovski, canada goose, ugg, moncler, ugg, coach outlet store online, moncler, toms shoes

7:43 PM, November 07, 2014  

Post a Comment

<< Home

web page hit counter