Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Greek Philosophy and Christian Faith: Rat Choice Theory

Here is Pope Benedict XVI’s (Joseph Ratzinger’s) account of the integral place of Greek philosophy in Christian faith, including an account of the disastrous effects "the process of dehellenization" has had on that faith. His conclusion: "The courage to engage the whole breadth of reason, and not the denial of its grandeur--this is the program with which a theology grounded in Biblical faith enters into the debates of our time....It is to this great ’logos,’ to this breadth of reason, that we invite our partners in the dialogue of cultures. To rediscover it constantly is the great task of the university."

Discussions - 1 Comment

But hasn’t Ortega’s diagnosis concerning the "curse of specialization" manifested itself completly? And is a man a fool or a boastfull liar to suggest that he can engage the whole breath of reason?(or perhaps I should ask if you have stoped beating your wife?) And certainly christian theology should be grounded in Biblical faith...just as string theory is grounded in abstruse mathmatics...and is it really a denial of the breath of reason to make a choice to engage only a single topic deeply? But doesn’t the courage to stand for the "whole breadth of reason" require that it neither be "de-hellenized" nor "hellenized" that is that the question is not the place of greek philosophy in christianity, or the place of physics in christianity or vice versa...but rather that the whole breath of reason contains but surpases greek philosophy...just as it surpases christianity or any particular "groundedness". Since all combinations or any particular field of equiry begin with particular ontological/metaphysical assumptions and proceed from these particular first things to provide a specific slice of the "whole breath of reason". And today all political disagreements are trully just disagreements over how being is ontologized. That is each side wishes to lay claim to the "whole breath of reason"...but can only do so from atagonisticly misunderstood starting points.

Even Hegel failed to engage the "whole breath of reason" and perhaps he had the aid of the Universal Spirit and a slightly simpler/smaller world.

My serious question is this: didn’t the process of "dehellenization" in christianity occur because folks wanted to see christianity in the "whole breath of reason" or perhaps even to understand it as Kierkegard did...and not as a subset of hellenization...and didn’t Hume, Locke, Newton and Bacon not de-christinize and de-prejudize or as I would say it de-onotologize Science and Reason...and with it moral philosophy and all of politics while paradoxically re-ontologizing it? And to say that I am Humeian or Lockean or libertarian or a physicist or mathmatician or an economist...isn’t this to define specifically and thus to come at the question of the "whole breath of knowledge" from the point of view of the specialist? Can I play multiple hands of poker? Can I bluff into the strongest hand and with good confidence fold because my own bluff was good enough to make me fold in the tabula rasa position of an actual opponent? But how do I recreate the thought process of the opponent? did my lip quiver? did I reach for the back of my neck? did my eye lids increase in speed? Would "they/I" know "I/they" was lying? But already I am asking how my opponent would have ontologized/conceptualized(which aspects of being did he find pertinent?Is he playing his cards or me, does he know that I am playing him and not my cards?) the situation...but if I can’t play myself at poker itself a miniscule recreation of the breath of reason...then how am I to play the "whole breadth of reason"? And don’t we always find ourselves asking: How did he call?

Or perhaps how the hell does John Lewis relate the "great task of the University" to No Limit Texas Holdem? It would only have been possible in the poker craze that was sweping the United States in 2006? The curse of specialization? the curse of being in time?

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