A reporter asked the Holy Father about the recent hurricanes in the Atlantic, adding the questions “Is there a moral responsibility for political leaders who reject collaborating with the other nations to control the emission of greenhouse gas? Why do they deny that climate change is also be the work of man?”
The Pope answered in part:
…if we don’t turn back we’re going down, that’s true. Climate change, you see the effects and scientists say clearly which is the path to follow. And all of us have a responsibility…to accept from the opinion or make decisions, and we have to take it seriously…
I would say: everyone has their own moral responsibility, first. Second, if one is a bit doubtful that this is not so true, let them ask the scientists. They are very clear. They are not opinions on the air, they are very clear. And then let them decide, and history will judge their decisions. Thanks.
The Pope is right. It is a good idea to ask actual scientists about their best guess of the uncertainties involved in climate change. One thing every climate scientist, myself included, will tell you is that it is 100% certain the climate will change.
It is as certain that nothing can stop the climate from changing. Let me emphasize that “nothing”. It means just what it says. Nothing.
The climate of the earth has never stood still, and never will. That means efforts to “battle” or “stop” climate change are futile. This position in physics is known as climate realism.
The big question is how much influence does mankind have? And the answer is nobody knows.
The Pope replied to the reporter (the ellipsis are original):
Why? A phrase comes to me from the Old Testament, I believe from the Psalm: Man is stupid. He is stubborn one who does not see, the only animal of creation that puts his leg in the same hole is man…the horse, no, they don’t do it…There is arrogance, the sufficiency of “it’s not like that,” and then there is the “pocket” God, not only about creation, so many decisions, so many contradictions (…) depend on money.
Turns out, if I have the translation right, that new logo of Sydney University might be Verum Dediscere. Unlearn Truth.
I learned of this in a tweet from CC Pecknold. That’s where the picture above arose. A new ad campaign to encourage students to journey to Sydney and be indoctrinated in non-truth.
Reacting to the original tweet, one fellow said, “Their toilets swirl the other way, too.”
The Unlearn home page makes several promises. Under a picture of two men presumably “oriented” toward sodomy and pretending to be married, Sydney tells us to “Unlearn love”. Under jailed manicured hands with pink nail polish “Unlearn criminal”. Under a marijuana plant “Unlearn medicine”.
Clicking “Unlearn love”—because what could be better than unlearning love—brings us this:
From the day we’re born, we love. But what makes us love one thing, one way, one person over another? And how can we use love to create a more inclusive and diverse community?…
Diversity and inclusion have always been an important part of who we are…
Today, it’s one of the reasons we support our Ally Network, which promotes cultural change and creates an inclusive community for our staff and students to thrive and realise their potential.
We believe that a diverse, inclusive community is a stronger one.
They didn’t get the memo that Diversity is our weakness. Skip that. Did you ever notice that whenever somebody starts telling you about a subject “Keep an open mind” you know you are about to be bamboozeled? Same thing when they tell you about “We want an inclusive community”. Nobody who says this means it. What they want instead is a rigorously controlled and restricted community.
Under “Unlearn criminal”, this:
Good citizens live safely behind a nation’s walls or its protecting seas. Criminals, we’re told, sneak inside our borders, around our systems, and beat the queue.
So far, so good. The very definition of “criminals” is those who break the law. But, no. What they really mean is “Keeping minds — and doors — open.” Everybody has the right to live where they want, as long as where they want to live is certain Western countries (and they’re not white).
Under “Unlearn Truth”, this:
Professor Nick Enfield and his team are fighting the war against deception through the Post Truth Initiative. By bringing together political scientists, academics and researchers to examine legitimacy and fraud, they run public forums on the problems created by scientific fraud and explore why people are convinced by stories, but not by facts.
They’re also building a “Bullshit Detector” — a computer capable of analysing speeches, articles and even tweets to tell if someone is being deceptive.
Maybe people are convinced by “stories, but not by facts” is because facts are not convincing of anything: you first need a story before you can even have facts. Same in science. You don’t know what facts to measure without a guiding theory, i.e. story.
I also call BS on the BS detector. It’s not that such a thing is a priori impossible, but it isn’t needed. And it will give the false patina of Science! to what are bound to be political judgments.
We’re changing the way we teach and how our students learn…
Unlearning is about challenging the established, and questioning the accepted.
It’s not about ignoring what you already know, but it’s about being brave enough to question it and break down old rules so we can write new ones. It’s about looking at things in the context of today, and tomorrow.
Because who needs tradition? And who wants history, that ugly place full of hate and crusty rules?
Following this are banalites about “the future of work” and cell phones, presumably the two subjects which most interest potential students. Also a video whose splash image is of three women in hijabs holding skate boards. Because nothing shots “Australia!” better.
– gain a deep understanding of your chosen disciplines of study and learn from those who are leaders in their fields
– set yourself up to go anywhere in the world by gaining the skills and understanding to work effectively across cultural boundaries
– study across or work with other disciplines to build your skills and tackle some of the most complex challenges of our time
– bridge the gap between theory and application by working on real-world industry, community, research and entrepreneurship projects.
These eighty words are almost entirely empty of content, and thus were probably typed out by a graduate in “Communications”, that ubiquitous amorphous major. You can’t only fault Sydney here, as these bullet points are found on many university sites.
Which term best describes the reaction from non-orthodox Christians (in practice, if not in name) to being reminded, via the Nashville Statement, that sodomy is a sin that cannot in any way be countenanced, excused, supported, approved of, or indulged in?
WE DENY that God has designed marriage to be a homosexual, polygamous, or polyamorous relationship.
WE DENY that adopting a homosexual or transgender self-conception is consistent with God’s holy purposes in creation and redemption.
WE AFFIRM that sin distorts sexual desires by directing them away from the marriage covenant and toward sexual immorality—a distortion that includes both heterosexual and homosexual immorality.
WE AFFIRM that it is sinful to approve of homosexual immorality or transgenderism and that such approval constitutes an essential departure from Christian faithfulness and witness.
WE DENY that the approval of homosexual immorality or transgenderism is a matter of moral indifference about which otherwise faithful Christians should agree to disagree.
None of these are in the least controversial and are of such matter-of-fact obviousness that the only wonder is that they had to be stated. If you’re not a (little-o) orthodox Christian, you might not believe any of these affirmations or denials, but if you’re surprised that these are what orthodox Christians actually believe, then you have been spending too much time out of the company of history.
Fr James Martin, SJ, whose profession and credentials would lead one to assume he understood these truths, must have misunderstood them—perhaps he didn’t read them?—for he took to the pages of the Washington Post to attempt his own statement.
He begins well: “I affirm: That LGBT people are, by virtue of baptism, full members of the church. I deny: That God wants them to feel that they don’t belong”
Nothing but net. But then, no orthodox Christian disputes this.
“I affirm that the Father loves LGBT people, the Son calls them and the Holy Spirit guides them. I deny nothing about God’s love for them.”
Nobody denies that either.
Then comes this:
“I affirm: That LGBT people have been made to feel like dirt by many churches. I deny: That Jesus wants us to add to their immense suffering.”
I should have said it before, but it must be pointed out there are no such things as “LGBT people.” Not in the sense Martin paints them, as special creatures, almost as if they are a different species. There are some people who are “gay”, but only in the same way some people are statisticians. Notice, too, Martin, who it is saddening to say, confirms a sort of soft bigotry when he leaves out necrophiliacs, woofies, masturbators, objectum sexuals, eco-sexuals and a host of others who are “oriented” towards non-procreative sexual activities.
The Church has lumped so much “dirt” on men oriented towards post-pubescent young men that it ordained a slew of them, many of whom are still in service (various estimates put their number from one-quarter to one-half of all priests), who misconducted themselves rather badly. Perhaps you read something about that.
Now it does add to the suffering of somebody to point out their shortcomings and sins (of any kind). And since that leads to the confessional, and the confessional to the narrow path, it must be that not all suffering is a bad thing.
Next: “I affirm: That LGBT people are some of the holiest people I know. I deny: That Jesus wants us to judge others, when he clearly forbade it.” Fr also says ” I deny: That Jesus wants any more judging.”
The holiest? One doubts, Father, one doubts. Holier than I, I hasten to say, is easy, and includes a great chunk of the baptised. And I make that point only to show how mixed up Fr Martin is. Here we are not judging men, but acts. If Jesus didn’t want us to judge sin, then there is no point for Fr Martin to admonish anybody, for this admonishing just is him judging, which he says Jesus clearly forbade. It is not hypocrisy for the drunkard to say “Drunkenness is evil.” It only turns into hypocrisy when he says, “It’s okay for me, but not for you.”
A continuation of the proof that the intellective soul is not physical and thus must come from God. We had a hiatus, which is a good thing, since the number of comments on the last post were so many. Angels are on their way!
1 In order to facilitate the solution of these arguments, certain things must be premised in explanation of the order and process of the generation of man and of animals in general.
2 To be taken into account first of all is the falsity of the opinion of those who say that the vital operations appearing in the embryo before its complete development do not proceed from a soul, or from a soul’s power existing in the embryo, but from the soul of the mother.
If this were true, the embryo would not even be an animal, since every animal consists of soul and body.
Vital operations, moreover, do not issue from an extrinsic active principle, but from an internal power; and in this respect particularly are living things, to which self-movement properly belongs, seen to differ from the non-living. For the thing that is nourished assimilates the nourishment and thus must possess an active power of nutrition; what the agent effects is like to itself. And this fact is much more manifest in the operation of the senses; it is through a power existing in this person, and not in another, that he is enabled to see and to hear. Hence, nourishment and even sensation on the part of the embryo prior to its complete development cannot be attributed to the soul of the mother.
Notes And thus it is immoral to kill the embryo.
3 Nevertheless, it cannot be said that the soul in its complete essence is present in the semen from the very beginning, though its operations are not manifested because of the lack of organs. This is impossible in view of the fact that since the soul is united to the body as its form, it is united only to a body of which it is properly the act. Now, a soul is the “act of an organic body.”
Prior to the organization of the body, therefore, the soul is not in the semen actually, but only potentially or virtually. Thus, Aristotle says in De anima II  that “seeds and fruits are endowed with life potentially so far as they are rid of,” that is, lack, “a soul; whereas the thing of which the soul is the act has indeed the power of life, but is not without a soul.”…
5 But this theory would be even more ridiculous if applied to the rational soul. For, first, the soul cannot possibly be divided as the body is, so as to be present in the separated semen; and second, it would follow that in all extra-copulative emissions of semen, without conception taking place, rational souls would nevertheless be multiplied.
Notes And thus are obviated all those bad jokes about masturbation and killing. Same thing with scratching-your-nose jokes about loosing skin cells.
6 Another theory, likewise inadmissible, is stated as follows. From the moment of severance the soul is not present in the semen actually but virtually, because of the lack of organs and yet this very power of the semen—itself a body potentially endowed with organs though actually without them—is, proportionately to the semen, a potential but not an actual soul.
Moreover, since plant life requires fewer organs than animal life, from the moment that the organic development of the semen suffices for plant life, the aforesaid seminal power becomes a vegetative soul; and later, the organs having been perfected and multiplied still more, the same power is raised to the level of a sensitive soul; and finally, with the perfecting of the organs form, the same soul becomes rational, not indeed, by the action of that seminal power, but through the influx of an external agent.
And for this reason the proponents of the theory suppose Aristotle to have said in the De generatione animalium that “the intellect is from without””[II, 3]. Now, this theory would involve the consequence that numerically one and the same power is at one time a purely vegetative soul, and afterwards a sensitive soul, the substantial form itself thus being perfected successively more and more. It would further follow both that the substantial form would be brought from potentiality to act, not all at once but in successive stages, and that generation is a continuous movement, just as alteration is. Now, all these consequences are impossible in nature.
7 But that theory would entail a consequence still more incongruous, namely, the mortality of the rational soul. For nothing formal in character that accrues to a corruptible thing makes it incorruptible by nature; in that case, the corruptible would be changed into the incorruptible, which is impossible, since they differ in genus, as Aristotle says in Metaphysics X .
In the process described above, however, the substance of the sensitive soul is held to be generated accidentally by the generated body, and hence that substance must necessarily be corruptible with the corruption of the body. Therefore, if the same soul becomes rational through the infusion into it of a kind of light, having the role of a form in its regard, for the sensitive is potentially intellective, then necessarily the rational soul perishes along with the body. But this is impossible, as we proved above, and as the Catholic faith teaches…
12 With these considerations in mind, it is easy to answer the objections.
To the first objection, that the sensitive soul must originate in the same way in man and in irrational animals because animal is predicated of them both univocally, we reply that this is not necessary. For, although the sensitive souls in man and brute are generically alike, they differ specifically, as do the things whose forms they are; since, just as the human animal differs specifically from the other animals by the fact that it is rational, so the sensitive soul of man differs specifically from the sensitive soul of the brute by the fact that it is also intellective. Therefore, in the soul of the brute there is nothing supra-sensitive, and, consequently, it transcends the body neither in being nor in operation; and that is why the brute soul must be generated together with the body and perish with the body.
But in man the sensitive soul is possessed of intellective power over and above the sensitive nature and is therefore raised above the body both in being and in operation; it is neither generated through the generation of the body, nor corrupted through the body’s corruption. Thus, the diversity in mode of origin of the human and of the brute soul is not on the part of the sensitive faculty, from which the generic nature is derived, but on the part of the intellective faculty, whence the specific difference stems. Hence, it cannot be inferred that they are diverse generically, but only specifically.
13 As to the second objection, to say that the thing conceived is an animal before a man does not prove that the rational soul is produced together with the semen. For the sensitive soul, by which it was an animal, does not remain, but is succeeded by a soul both sensitive and intellective in character, by which it is at once animal and man, as we have already made clear…
Notes The refutations of the other objections follow along similar lines and do not add much new. So we will skip toward the end, since by this point all should be convinced the human soul is not transmitted in the semen; but see the original in case you still have doubts.
21 The tenth objection, that the body is conformed to the soul and that, therefore, the soul forms a body like to itself, is partly true and partly false. This statement is true if referred to the soul of the begetter, but false if referred to the soul of the begotten; for, as regards its primary and principal parts, the body is not formed by the power of the latter’s soul, but by that of the former, as we have just shown. So, too, is every matter configured to its form: a configuration which, however, is not brought about by the action of the thing generated, but by the action of the generating form.
22 As to the eleventh objection, it is quite clear, from what has been said, that at the beginning of its separation the semen is only potentially animate; hence, it does not at that time have a soul actually, but virtually. In the process of generation the semen is, by its own power, endowed with a vegetative and a sensitive soul, which do not remain but pass away, being succeeded by a rational soul.
23 Nor, again, is the reasoning in the twelfth objection conclusive. For, if the formation of the body precedes the human soul, it does not follow that the soul is for the sake of the body.
Indeed, a thing is for the sake of another, in two ways. In one way, for the sake of the latter’s operation, or preservation, or anything of the sort which follows upon being; and such things are posterior to that on whose account they are; the clothes are for the man, and tools for the worker. In another way, for the sake of its being; and thus, a thing which is for the sake of another is prior to the latter in time, but posterior in nature. It is in this sense that the body is for the sake of the soul, just as in every case matter is for the sake of the form. But this would not be true if the joining of soul and body did not constitute a thing one in being, as those say who deny that the soul is the form of the body.