Lack of Clarity and ‘the Greatest Generation’

The YouTube conference embedded below by Father Chad Ripperger is very much worth your careful attention. Father goes a long way in explaining the reasons for what might be called “emotional thinking,” i.e., the kind of low-quality thought that many people engage in rather than the authentic and valid use of their God-given human reason. The defective mechanism for this low-quality thought is the preponderance of antecedent emotional reactions tainting the process. Father helps to make sense of this. It would be wholesome for each of us to examine whether and to what extent this phenomenon affects our own thought process. (Students of Brother Francis’ philosophy course will be prepared to make sense out of what Father says here.)

Also of tremendous interest in this conference is the criticism of some of the leading lights of the new theology, including Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI, whose ideas — including the former’s phenomenology and the latter’s aversion to Saint Thomas’ clarity — Father Ripperger gently and charitably critiques. He even faults then Cardinal Ratzinger for promoting the meticulously discredited “branch theory” in Dominus Iesus. (For a brief example of how discredited this theory is, go here and search for the subheading, “The Branch Theory”.) Such critiques of popes who are theologians do not in the slightest endanger one’s fidelity to the Magisterium of the Church as long as one has clarity on the categories of magisterial teaching and the kind of assent owed to each, remaining, of course, faithful to the great Catholic tradition in the process. (See, e.g., Amoris Laetitia and the ‘Authentic Magisterium’ and What’s Wrong with Personalism and ‘Theology of the Body’? An Interview with Dom Pietro Leone.)

I hope you benefit from this conference.