We deny to claim "any Superiority to ourself
to defyne, decyde, or determyn any Article or Poynt
of the Christian Fayth and Relligion,
or to chang any Ancient Ceremony of the Church
from the Forme before received and observed
by the Catholick and Apostolick Church."

Norman Simplicity

Norman Simplicity
Click image for original | © Vitrearum (Allan Barton)

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Horrible sophistry

I don't find homosexuality particularly interesting, perplexing, noteworthy, or vexing. There is nothing new under the sun. And while I admit that there are both inclinations and actions that one might be tempted to tag as either 'heterosexual' or 'homosexual', if one really insisted on speaking this way, not much follows from that. There is surely a wide disjunction between inclinations and actions (generally speaking), and nothing said so far allows us to brand individuals with these terms as if they named a fixed and unvarying nature. Yet, of course, that is precisely what both sides of the debate are intent upon doing: one is, or is not, a homosexual. And if nature or destiny has spoken, who are we to judge?

This tawdry essentialism is as committed to political party denominations as are most Catholics and Protestants. And just like these two extremists groups, no subtle shading is allowed: we are to deal with this, as with everything else, as a strict binary. But this is bad thinking, bad philosophy, bad theology, and bad psychology. It is, in reality, not even thinking at all but the bar erected merely to put an end to thinking. It is as though neither Freud nor Sartre had never lived, let alone ever put pen to paper. So, from my perspective, most of what appears under the heading "Thoughts on Marriage" is simply a gross overstatement of its real contribution.

The real question for ME-ists is: what would you accept as either consistent evidence or a cogent argument against your perspective? There is none imaginable and that fact alone betrays the built-in impregnability of their position. Not only do they reject all the available evidence and all available arguments, there is no conceivable evidence or arguments that could ever do the trick. They already know better. Neato, huh?

Their "discussions" soi-disant are simply designed to show that there is no scripture, no reason, and no tradition that they would ever accept. Typically, things proceed along similar lines to this:

A. Ancient and late antique authors considered women to be inferior: socially, biologically, and ontologically.
B. The main Pauline discussions of marriage relationships assume the cultural norms.
C. Augustine reads Paul at face value.
D. For Paul and Augustine, Scripture, tradition, and reason speak uniformly.

For them, these authors are utterly wrong, grossly uninformed, hopelessly naive, and ridiculously monolithic. "Science" -- which in point of fact has very little of interest to say about what our biology really entails for us -- is more up-to-date. Therefore, 'science' -- or, really, what one takes 'science' to mean -- wins the day. All we need to deal with texts which say otherwise is a new "hermeneutic" that allows us to jigger the proverbial rabbit out the hat where it never really was. Tada.

James Cameron needs to help raise the bar, again.

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