Friday, February 19, 2010

"I Thirst" (Jn 19:28)

An Age of Intellectual Confusion

We are living therefore in a period of true spiritual decadence, when, so to speak, all the columns of the temple of values (having been afflicted with vertigo) have collapsed. In other words, there has been an overthrow of the values on which every human life is built. The elimination of the divine has made us conscious of a radical crisis resulting from all our spiritual and moral values being literally emptied into the void. A kind of angst (dread anxiety) then seizes the individual for, just as a river can no longer flow if cut off from its source, or a lamp can no longer give light once separated from its conductor-wire, so man can not live without God, his origin and his end.

It is the ruin of the intellect which leads to the ruin of man and his destruction - after first leading him to despair. Such a fate is inevitable when, after the great Luciferian and Nietzschean cry of "God is Dead", we fail to hearken to all the signs given by that "God who will come again".

The First Vatican Council (1870) had already attempted to provide a remedy for the universal irrationality manifesting itself in the philosophical order, and had implored us to return to Saint Thomas. Our intellectual, moral and religious life is not a kaleidoscope to be constantly twirled about by esthetes afflicted by the itch of perpetual "research" and busily carrying out the destruction of the faith. The human soul is like a monument whose rock-foundations are indestructible. Think of the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem which has survived fire and sword, invasions and sacrileges across the centuries. These Cyclopean foundations are always there; they are witnesses of the vitality of the chosen people. In like manner, the human soul and its harmonious development mock all social, political, or philosophic upheavals. The love of a mother for her son, the love of a husband for his wife, one's attachment to his native soil - all remain viable realities today in Communist China as they did with the primitive tribes of the Bronze Age or with 17th century Eskimos and Iroquois! Respect for one's given word is an imperative of the conscience for every person brought up with a sense of decency, and no theory - not even the edicts of Lenin - can smother this. The thirst of the Infinite, of the Absolute, in a word, of God, cuts through all aberrations.

- Saint Thomas Aquinas, Orthodoxy, and Neo-Modernism in the Church, Renée Casin, Tr. James Likoudis, CUF, 1977, p8

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