Author Topic: Why not hedonism?  (Read 2413 times)

Offline Daniel

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Re: Why not hedonism?
« Reply #105 on: February 13, 2019, 07:34:47 PM »
If, as many Catholic theologians seem to hold, God "does not command us to do the impossible", then why should I, who do not know whether or not the Catholic Church has any sort of God-given legal authority, continue obeying the Catholic Church? And why should I, who have no idea whether or not baptism is real, continue calling myself a 'Christian'?

God's laws are secret and hidden. The Catholic Church, however, claims to possess knowledge of God's laws and further claims to have authority to make additional laws. Yet many other religions and secular governments make similar claims. Since I personally don't have the knowledge, I personally am in no position to judge any of these religions and determine which one, if any, is correct.

Nevertheless, Catholic theologians hold that "every baptized person is bound to obey the Catholic Church's laws and to believe in the Catholic Church's dogmas" while simultaneously holding the contradictory claim that "nobody is bound to obey God's laws when it is impossible to do so".

edit - I suppose it isn't strictly 'impossible' to obey God by means of obeying the Catholic Church, since it's possible that the Catholic Church is right. But then again, any one of the other religions might be right. And this leads to absurdities...
You end up with people who try to practice all of the religions hoping to "get lucky"--a practice which Catholic theologians would condemn as 'superstitious'.
And then you end up with other people who blindly pick and choose one religion and follow it, also hoping to "get lucky".
The latter seems just about as absurd as the former.
And it raises the question: When is faithless irrational belief ever a good thing? Even if you happen to get lucky, it seems what you're actually doing is not much more than gambling. Not obeying God's rules qua God's rules.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2019, 08:05:11 PM by Daniel »
 
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Offline Xavier

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Re: Why not hedonism?
« Reply #106 on: February 13, 2019, 11:50:11 PM »
Quote from: Daniel
If, as many Catholic theologians seem to hold, God "does not command us to do the impossible", then why should I, who do not know whether or not the Catholic Church has any sort of God-given legal authority, continue obeying the Catholic Church?

 ::) Why don't you know? You can know if you want to know. No? You will not know if you do not want to know.

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God's laws are secret and hidden.

Not at all. His Commandments are crystal clear in the Decalogue, and the natural law is known through conscience to all who seek Truth.

Mat 19:17 ...But if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments. 18 He said to him: Which? And Jesus said: Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness. 19 Honour thy father and thy mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.

And since you are baptized, you should confess your sins if you have lapsed from the Faith, be restored to grace, and led by the Spirit.

1 Jn 3:23 And this is His commandment, that we should believe in the Name of His Son Jesus Christ: and love one another, as He hath given commandment unto us. 24 And he that keepeth His commandments, abideth in Him, and He in him. And in this we know that He abideth in us, by the Spirit which He hath given us.

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Since I personally don't have the knowledge

Please read this to see some of the great things Jesus has done in the history of His Church, which could help you, if you are really willing and desirous to acquire that salvific knowledge: "The analyses were conducted with absolute and unquestionable scientific precision and they were documented with a series of microscopic photographs.

These analyses sustained the following conclusions: The Flesh is real Flesh. The Blood is real Blood. The Flesh and the Blood belong to the human species ... (see the link for more)" http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/lanciano.html

And Fr. Michael Mueller, as posted in another thread, documents umpteen other well-documented Eucharistic Miracles. Atheistic scientists have converted upon seeing these.

To know and believe in the Name of Jesus Christ as Our Lord and God, as our King and Saviour, is necessary for salvation. Then, we obey His commandments made known by His Word and His Church, to grow in grace, and inherit eternal life, especially through His Sacraments, especially that Blessed Sacrament of Infinite Love, the Eucharist.

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Nevertheless, Catholic theologians hold that "every baptized person is bound to obey the Catholic Church's laws and to believe in the Catholic Church's dogmas" while simultaneously holding the contradictory claim that "nobody is bound to obey God's laws when it is impossible to do so".

The two propositions are not contradictory. The erroneous proposition "nobody can know the Church's laws are God's laws" or "it is impossible to know the Church's laws" or some such form of self-defeating agnosticism which you introduced to go from one to the other is false. It's not just possible but easy for you to go to Church, make a good confession, and begin to embrace the Faith firmly. Come off this, Daniel, come back to a right and holy life in the Church, growing in grace and union with Christ. Jesus loves you and wants you to have Eternal Life and perfect happiness forever with Him.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2019, 11:59:55 PM by Xavier »
Please listen to the frequent messages and take heed of the directions given from Our Living Lord and Our Loving Lady from around the world here: https://maryrefugeofholylove.com/ Great things are at stake. Please consecrate your life to the Blessed Mother so that the Kingdom of God may come, "Ad Sanctam Trinitatem per Mariam, Ut adveniat Regnum Deum, adveniat Regnum Mariae, ergo TOTUS TUUS ego sum, MARIA" See http://www.maria-domina-animarum.net/en/flowers/1-250

Mary, our Heavenly Mother, implores those who receive Holy Communion Daily, or at least Weekly, to Offer their Lives. TEXT OF THE LIFE OFFERING, adapted and pluralized: Dear Lord Jesus, before the Holy Trinity, Our Heavenly Mother, and the whole Heavenly Court, united with Your most Precious Blood and Your Sacrifice on Calvary, We hereby Offer our whole Lives to the Intention of Your Sacred Heart and to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Together with our life, we place at Your disposal all Holy Masses, all our Holy Communions, all Rosaries, all acts of consecration, all our good deeds, all our sacrifices, and the suffering of our entire life for the Adoration and Supplication of the Holy Trinity, for Unity in our Holy Mother Church, for the Holy Father, Pope Francis the First; and for His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI. For all the Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church, for all Bishops of the Universal Church that they may be true Apostles and Shepherds; and for Priests, Nuns and Monks, for good Priestly and Religious Vocations, and for All Souls until the end of the world. O my Jesus, please accept our life Sacrifice and our offerings and give us Your grace that we may all persevere obediently until death. Amen." https://marianapostolate.com/life-offering/ It is recommended that you make this Life Offering as soon as you feel ready, and to renew it from time to time. Please do.

Please read the Blessed Mother's amazing promises in the link: A simple effective way for thousands of us to save millions of souls. The Doctors and Apostles say if we save even just one other soul through prayer and sacrifice, we also ensure the salvation of our own. Let us all Offer all our Life to Jesus and Mary Today.
 

Offline Daniel

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Re: Why not hedonism?
« Reply #107 on: February 14, 2019, 07:12:07 AM »
Quote from: Daniel
If, as many Catholic theologians seem to hold, God "does not command us to do the impossible", then why should I, who do not know whether or not the Catholic Church has any sort of God-given legal authority, continue obeying the Catholic Church?

 ::) Why don't you know? You can know if you want to know. No? You will not know if you do not want to know.
It can't be known. Even the Catholic Church doesn't claim to have any external proofs of its own authority. The Catholic Church merely says that people who have faith know "the Church has authority" and "the Catholic Church is the Church" to be true propositions and that people without faith don't know this and can't know this.

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God's laws are secret and hidden.

Not at all. His Commandments are crystal clear in the Decalogue, and the natural law is known through conscience to all who seek Truth.
This is assuming that the Decalogue came from God. But I don't know whether or not it did. For all I know, somebody may have made it all up and then attributed it to God.
As for the theory of natural law, that's a philosophical principle/hypothesis. Not something which any faithless man knows for sure. Maybe there is no such thing as a 'natural law'. Maybe divine command theory is right, or maybe God is a utilitarian. I have no idea.

Quote
Quote
Since I personally don't have the knowledge

Please read this to see some of the great things Jesus has done in the history of His Church, which could help you, if you are really willing and desirous to acquire that salvific knowledge: "The analyses were conducted with absolute and unquestionable scientific precision and they were documented with a series of microscopic photographs.

These analyses sustained the following conclusions: The Flesh is real Flesh. The Blood is real Blood. The Flesh and the Blood belong to the human species ... (see the link for more)" http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/lanciano.html

And Fr. Michael Mueller, as posted in another thread, documents umpteen other well-documented Eucharistic Miracles. Atheistic scientists have converted upon seeing these.
I'll read it over, but I don't see how 'miracles' can qualify as a source of true knowledge. Nobody, not even the expert scientist, is in the position judge whether or not these 'happenings' actually happened, and, if they happened, whether or not they're really miracles (as opposed to natural occurrences and/or deliberate fraud). Science doesn't know everything, so even if 100% of all scientists agreed that this cannot be explained by science, then that doesn't mean it's a 'miracle'... it just means it's unexplainable.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2019, 07:15:45 AM by Daniel »
 

Offline St. Columba

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Re: Why not hedonism?
« Reply #108 on: February 14, 2019, 12:54:07 PM »
Daniel, I have the highest respect for you.  You are clearly trying to do the right thing. 

If Catholicism is true, and yet, you believed, in your heart of hearts, that it would be irrational to practice the faith whilst not having certainty, then you are listening to and obeying your conscience.  At worst, you will not be damned, since you (a) do not have knowledge that what you are doing is sinful, and (b) you are invincibly ignorant.  At best, God will crown you with many crowns, and give you the grace of salvation, since (a) you were validly baptized and (b) have committed no mortal sin by not practicing the faith, since you do not have knowledge of the sinfulness of not practicing the faith under the circumstances you find yourself in.  Besides, you have the ardent desire for truth. 

All of this hinges on absolute certainty.  Does the natural law prohibit the practice of a faith unless, and until, one is absolutely certain of it's veracity?  I don't know, to be honest.

I can totally relate to your predicament Daniel.  I consider you the most honest person on this forum (not to mention abundant humility and intelligence).  I cannot fathom, for the life of me, how God could possibly reject someone who so much wants to please Him and do what is right.  I HIGHLY suspect that God will grant you one of the highest places in Heaven, after He reveals His truth to you.

Be at peace friend. 

You are in my lowly prayers.

« Last Edit: February 14, 2019, 12:57:50 PM by St. Columba »
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Offline Xavier

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Re: Why not hedonism?
« Reply #109 on: Today at 01:13:47 AM »
Dear Daniel, you have embraced a dogmatic agnosticism that holds all knowledge to be near-impossible to obtain. This worldview keeps you from coming to know and experience the Love that God has for you, especially in His Sacrament of Love. He calls you to come back into His loving arms today, trusting Him to reveal Himself to you.

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It can't be known. Even the Catholic Church doesn't claim to have any external proofs of its own authority.

Not at all. See Vatican I, "In order that the submission of our faith should be in accordance with reason, it was God's will that there should be linked to the internal assistance of the Holy Spirit external indications of his revelation, that is to say divine acts, and first and foremost miracles and prophecies, which clearly demonstrating as they do the omnipotence and infinite knowledge of God, are the most certain signs of revelation and are suited to the understanding of all. Hence Moses and the Prophets, and especially Christ our Lord himself, worked many absolutely clear miracles and delivered prophecies". And Pope St. Pius X's Oath against Modernism, "the external proofs of revelation, that is, divine acts and especially miracles and prophecies as the surest signs of the divine origin of the Christian religion and ... these same proofs are well adapted to the understanding of all eras and all men, even of this time. Thirdly ... the Church, the guardian and teacher of the revealed word, was personally instituted by the real and historical Christ when he lived among us, and that the Church was built upon Peter, the prince of the apostolic hierarchy, and his successors for the duration of time." Pope Leo XIII's Encyclical on Christian Philosophy sums it up, "In the first place, then, this great and noble fruit is gathered from human reason, that it demonstrates that God is; for the greatness of the beauty and of the creature the Creator of them may be seen so as to be known thereby.(17) Again, it shows God to excel in the height of all perfections, especially in infinite wisdom before which nothing lies hidden, and in absolute justice which no depraved affection could possibly shake; and that God, therefore, is not only true but Truth itself, Who can neither deceive nor be deceived. Whence it clearly follows that human reason finds the fullest faith and authority united in the word of God. In like manner, reason declares that the doctrine of the Gospel has even from its very beginning been made manifest by certain wonderful signs, the established proofs, as it were, of unshaken truth; and that all, therefore, who set faith in the Gospel do not believe rashly as though following cunningly devised fables,(18) but, by a most reasonable consent, subject their intelligence and judgment to an authority which is divine." So She most certainly teaches there are external proofs. You can find all these online for further reading if you wish.

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The Catholic Church merely says that people who have faith know "the Church has authority" and "the Catholic Church is the Church" to be true propositions and that people without faith don't know this and can't know this.

This is an erroneous proposition called "fideism". the Church rejects it, and the harm it has already caused to your own Faith shows why.

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I'll read it over, but I don't see how 'miracles' can qualify as a source of true knowledge. Nobody, not even the expert scientist, is in the position judge whether or not these 'happenings' actually happened, and, if they happened, whether or not they're really miracles (as opposed to natural occurrences and/or deliberate fraud). Science doesn't know everything, so even if 100% of all scientists agreed that this cannot be explained by science

It is just one of the countless miracles that Jesus Christ the Lord Our God has worked over the history of His Church, as He did in Israel for the Patriarchs and Prophets. The scientifically documented Eucharistic Miracle of Lanciano shows any sincere observer, with safe-to-act-upon moral certainty, that the God Who did these things is Powerful beyond our imagination. If only you would regularly communicate with Him in the Blessed Sacrament, you would know that limitless Power and Infinite Love also by spiritual experience, as Fr. Mueller says. Please continue to pray, read and study. You can find numerous other miracles posted in the Real Presence Thread. We will be praying for you, dear Daniel. God bless.

Edit: The world tells us it is charity to be indifferent about whether or not others believe in, know or experience God's Love for them. But Jesus assures us charity desires for all others all that we desire for our own selves; yea, to desire more for others than for us, as Jesus showed us Himself. St. Thomas says when a person participates in Mass reverently and receives Holy Communion devoutly, it profits him as much and he merits to an even greater extent than as if he himself really, in an excess of supreme love, died and laid down his life in martyrdom for God and for his neighbor! God has already done the hard part Himself - He does not ask us to die on a Cross for love of God and us as He did, to carry it perfectly and in the midst of inconceivable sufferings and sorrows!! No, all He asks us is the simple and easy thing of going regularly to Confession, spending time in prayer, especially praying the Rosary, and regularly coming to Holy Mass to spend time in His Presence and benefit from Holy Communion.
« Last Edit: Today at 03:18:20 AM by Xavier »
Please listen to the frequent messages and take heed of the directions given from Our Living Lord and Our Loving Lady from around the world here: https://maryrefugeofholylove.com/ Great things are at stake. Please consecrate your life to the Blessed Mother so that the Kingdom of God may come, "Ad Sanctam Trinitatem per Mariam, Ut adveniat Regnum Deum, adveniat Regnum Mariae, ergo TOTUS TUUS ego sum, MARIA" See http://www.maria-domina-animarum.net/en/flowers/1-250

Mary, our Heavenly Mother, implores those who receive Holy Communion Daily, or at least Weekly, to Offer their Lives. TEXT OF THE LIFE OFFERING, adapted and pluralized: Dear Lord Jesus, before the Holy Trinity, Our Heavenly Mother, and the whole Heavenly Court, united with Your most Precious Blood and Your Sacrifice on Calvary, We hereby Offer our whole Lives to the Intention of Your Sacred Heart and to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Together with our life, we place at Your disposal all Holy Masses, all our Holy Communions, all Rosaries, all acts of consecration, all our good deeds, all our sacrifices, and the suffering of our entire life for the Adoration and Supplication of the Holy Trinity, for Unity in our Holy Mother Church, for the Holy Father, Pope Francis the First; and for His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI. For all the Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church, for all Bishops of the Universal Church that they may be true Apostles and Shepherds; and for Priests, Nuns and Monks, for good Priestly and Religious Vocations, and for All Souls until the end of the world. O my Jesus, please accept our life Sacrifice and our offerings and give us Your grace that we may all persevere obediently until death. Amen." https://marianapostolate.com/life-offering/ It is recommended that you make this Life Offering as soon as you feel ready, and to renew it from time to time. Please do.

Please read the Blessed Mother's amazing promises in the link: A simple effective way for thousands of us to save millions of souls. The Doctors and Apostles say if we save even just one other soul through prayer and sacrifice, we also ensure the salvation of our own. Let us all Offer all our Life to Jesus and Mary Today.
 
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Offline Non Nobis

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Re: Why not hedonism?
« Reply #110 on: Today at 01:36:15 AM »
Daniel, I have the highest respect for you.  You are clearly trying to do the right thing. 

If Catholicism is true, and yet, you believed, in your heart of hearts, that it would be irrational to practice the faith whilst not having certainty, then you are listening to and obeying your conscience.  At worst, you will not be damned, since you (a) do not have knowledge that what you are doing is sinful, and (b) you are invincibly ignorant.  At best, God will crown you with many crowns, and give you the grace of salvation, since (a) you were validly baptized and (b) have committed no mortal sin by not practicing the faith, since you do not have knowledge of the sinfulness of not practicing the faith under the circumstances you find yourself in.  Besides, you have the ardent desire for truth. 

All of this hinges on absolute certainty.  Does the natural law prohibit the practice of a faith unless, and until, one is absolutely certain of it's veracity?  I don't know, to be honest.

I can totally relate to your predicament Daniel.  I consider you the most honest person on this forum (not to mention abundant humility and intelligence).  I cannot fathom, for the life of me, how God could possibly reject someone who so much wants to please Him and do what is right.  I HIGHLY suspect that God will grant you one of the highest places in Heaven, after He reveals His truth to you.

Be at peace friend. 

You are in my lowly prayers.

St. Columba and Daniel,

I don't think that honest and sincere agnosticism is admirable. The honest and sincere part may get you a high place in heaven if God knows you are just confused; but God means truth to be knowable and His Church to be believed.  What a pity it is to be unable to accept this in your life.

Cardinal Newman (soon to be canonized) said that "ten thousand difficulties do not make one doubt". The fact that you have many difficulties does not make it immoral to believe: humbly accept the fact that you will not have all the answers in your life. Who do you think you need to be, the greatest theologian (with insight into God's mysteries)? God gave you faith (not knowledge) when you were baptized;  PRAY that He may strengthen it.  That is the most important thing, that is what may be missing.

Whatever you think about these things, PRAY.
« Last Edit: Today at 01:48:39 AM by Non Nobis »
[Matthew 8:26]  And Jesus saith to them: Why are you fearful, O ye of little faith? Then rising up he commanded the winds, and the sea, and there came a great calm.

[Job  38:1-5]  Then the Lord answered Job out of a whirlwind, and said: [2] Who is this that wrappeth up sentences in unskillful words? [3] Gird up thy loins like a man: I will ask thee, and answer thou me. [4] Where wast thou when I laid up the foundations of the earth? tell me if thou hast understanding. [5] Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? or who hath stretched the line upon it?
 
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Offline St. Columba

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Re: Why not hedonism?
« Reply #111 on: Today at 12:37:37 PM »
Following one's conscience, after one has painstakingly searched for what is true, is still a solemn duty, even if it is materially erroneous.

Aquinas (SUMMA - Part II: Part 1, Question 19, Article 5):

For in matters of indifference, the will that is at variance with erring reason or conscience, is evil in some way on account of the object, on which the goodness or malice of the will depends; not indeed on account of the object according as it is in its own nature; but according as it is accidentally apprehended by reason as something evil to do or to avoid. And since the object of the will is that which is proposed by the reason, as stated above (3), from the very fact that a thing is proposed by the reason as being evil, the will by tending thereto becomes evil. And this is the case not only in indifferent matters, but also in those that are good or evil in themselves. For not only indifferent matters can received the character of goodness or malice accidentally; but also that which is good, can receive the character of evil, or that which is evil, can receive the character of goodness, on account of the reason apprehending it as such. For instance, to refrain from fornication is good: yet the will does not tend to this good except in so far as it is proposed by the reason. If, therefore, the erring reason propose it as an evil, the will tends to it as to something evil. Consequently the will is evil, because it wills evil, not indeed that which is evil in itself, but that which is evil accidentally, through being apprehended as such by the reason. In like manner, to believe in Christ is good in itself, and necessary for salvation: but the will does not tend thereto, except inasmuch as it is proposed by the reason. Consequently if it be proposed by the reason as something evil, the will tends to it as to something evil: not as if it were evil in itself, but because it is evil accidentally, through the apprehension of the reason. Hence the  Philosopher says (Ethic. vii, 9) that "properly speaking the incontinent man is one who does not follow right reason; but accidentally, he is also one who does not follow false reason."  We must therefore conclude that, absolutely speaking, every will at variance with reason, whether right or erring, is always evil.

« Last Edit: Today at 12:48:15 PM by St. Columba »
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