Archive for Monday, February 18, 2013

Letter: No update

February 18, 2013

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To the editor:

A recent cartoon in the Journal World likened the Roman Catholic Church’s moral stance on sexual ethics to the Dark Ages. The cartoonist asserted that their sexual morality should be “updated.” Why?

I am asking for the grounds for urging Christians to change their views. What basis? What foundation? Where does he begin to assert the need for such a change? Obviously a cartoon cannot give a full-orbed argument, but he does take a bold stance without giving any reasons.

The Roman Catholic Church and all traditional Christians urge their positions based on revelation. Beginning with God’s words to Moses, “You shall not commit adultery,” their arguments are grounded in a transcendent, non-subjective standard.

By contrast, as I understand those who tend to agree with the cartoonist, they generally begin and end inside their own skulls. As the Bible says, “what is right in their own eyes.” They at times have utilitarian reasons for their ethical position, but that’s the extent of it. But, why should “usefulness” or even “rights” matter if there is nothing outside of the human skull that sets the standard? Why should I care about you if all that exists is a material universe? Why have any standards at all except “eat, drink, and be merry” for tomorrow we die?

No, God’s revelation does not need to be updated. Since he created us, he knows what is best for us.

Comments

bearded_gnome 2 years, 4 months ago

The Roman Catholic Church and all traditional Christians urge their positions based on revelation. Beginning with God’s words to Moses, “You shall not commit adultery,” their arguments are grounded in a transcendent, non-subjective standard.

By contrast, as I understand those who tend to agree with the cartoonist, they generally begin and end inside their own skulls. As the Bible says, “what is right in their own eyes.” They at times have utilitarian reasons for their ethical position, but that’s the extent of it. But, why should “usefulness” or even “rights” matter if there is nothing outside of the human skull that sets the standard? Why should I care about you if all that exists is a material universe? Why have any standards at all except “eat, drink, and be merry” for tomorrow we die?

No, God’s revelation does not need to be updated. Since he created us, he knows what is best for us.

---correct indeed. and thus, right and wrong, or I should write "right" and "wrong" are only defined by who has the largest pressure group, who screams the loudest, who acts out the worst.
in fact, there becomes no right and no wrong without Go.

human nature certainly hasn't changed.

Irenaku 2 years, 4 months ago

The cartoon is a response to the decades upon decades of child sexual abuse committed by priests that was often excused, ignored and covered up. I am Catholic as well, but this did not offend me. It is one person's opinion, which they are entitled to have. Let it go.

grimpeur 2 years, 4 months ago

When you understand that we create our gods, and not the other way around, you will understand why these "objective" standards of morality are human constructions, too.

fiddleback 2 years, 4 months ago

"But, why should “usefulness” or even “rights” matter if there is nothing outside of the human skull that sets the standard?"

You should take this comedy act on the road. There are plenty of dogmatic reactionaries in these parts, but I've never heard a person spit on the Enlightenment and the entire progress of our species with such Draconian disregard, such guffaw-inducing obliviousness to his own circular logic. I nominate you, Mr. Upchurch, to become Stephen Colbert's regular religion correspondent.

tomatogrower 2 years, 4 months ago

Regardless of whether you are Catholic or any other religion. You have no right to demand that the government make rules that follow your religion. Don't like abortion? Don't get one. Don't believe in birth control? Don't use it. Don't believe in same sex marriage? Don't marry someone of the opposite sex. I won't force you to do any of those things, but don't force others to not do them. If you really can't stand it, then go somewhere and start your own country. This country was started on freedom and Civil liberties which have evolved to include everyone, even you. Live your life the way you want, but stay out of others.

jayhawklawrence 2 years, 4 months ago

I often wonder in regards to the Catholic Church whether they are capable of accountibility for their actions and whether the organization is controlled more by their material assets and far less by their spiritual purpose. You can understand that some individuals will have problems but you cannot explain away the coverup of these incidences without questioning the organization itself.

Taking that a step further, the Catholic Church protests against Obamacare and birth control and even abortion seems to be as much politically motivated to change their image and distract public outrage more than anything else.

In spite of my skepticism about the organization, they have a rich history full of great saints and philosophers both and many spiritually uplifting traditions. But they also had St. Francis who was a reformer. Reform is a necessary part of maintaining the spiritual health of this church and reform is always a painful medicine. It defies the status quo.

...A former altar boy.

voevoda 2 years, 4 months ago

The commandment "Thou shalt not commit adultery" doesn't say anything about abortion or birth control--the two issues that seem to have some Catholics so exercised. Neither does any other part of the Bible.

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