I have discovered that I feel most threatened by a well-reasoned opposite point of view when I am least knowledgeable about my own. Or, to put it another way: whenever I base my entire political or theological construct on unexamined principles and/or assumptions (the Bible says, we've always done it this way, everybody knows), any contrarian point of view that is well-argued threatens me like nothing else can.
A negative example serves best. Paul Ryan's "Roadmap for America's Future" is a good example of a well-reasoned point of view that stands basically polar-opposite to mine. I am, however, not in the least threatened by it, because I have thought long and hard about my own, and I am comfortable with it. And since it does not threaten me on the level of basic assumptions about the nature of society and government, it does not threaten me on the more immediate level of how that vision is to be implemented.
Indeed, I can well entertain many of the proposals he makes concerning health care, social security and taxation, because I believe they rise above political points of view. They rightly question any entrenched, unexamined way of doing things, right or left.
But, this is not a political blog/website. So let me instead venture into the world of the other topic never to be mentioned in polite society: religion.
What grounds the Catholic Church is obviously greater than and prior to it. If I am in touch with that--whatever it is--then I can never be threatened by someone acting against or questioning what it is the Church is or believes.
But neither can I pass off my own point of view as the only one, or the correct one. It may be only a point of view; but it is a point of view of something that is greater than me and greater than all of us. As such it is well worth listening to.
With this in mind I offer some notes from that time in my life when I pursued heavy theological matters. At such a time I began to think about something even further back: a time when I proposed complementing talk about the 'hypostatic union' with talk about a 'hypodynamic' one. Well, you can see where it led to--nowhere. Still, faced with that same situation today, I would try again.
See what you think.
Click here to download the notes.