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 Post subject: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:12 am 
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Explain.

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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:22 am 
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http://www.newadvent.org/summa/2085.htm

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Indeed, the Lord Jesus, when He prayed to the Father, "that all may be one. . . as we are one" (John 17:21-22) opened up vistas closed to human reason, for He implied a certain likeness between the union of the divine Persons, and the unity of God's sons in truth and charity. This likeness reveals that man, who is the only creature on earth which God willed for itself, cannot fully find himself except through a sincere gift of himself. ~ Pope Paul VI, Gaudium et Spes 24.3


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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 9:24 pm 
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The classic example would be Bertrand Russell.

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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:10 pm 
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Doom wrote:
The classic example would be Bertrand Russell.
?

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"May our tongues proclaim Your truth. May Your Cross be a protection for us as we let our tongues be turned into new harps and sing hymns with fiery lips"

-From the introduction to Our Father, "On the feasts of the Lord and other important feasts", Syro Malabar rite


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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:18 pm 
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theJack wrote:
http://www.newadvent.org/summa/2085.htm

I think you're referring to "I answer that" of article 3. I don'tfully understand what it means.

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"May our tongues proclaim Your truth. May Your Cross be a protection for us as we let our tongues be turned into new harps and sing hymns with fiery lips"

-From the introduction to Our Father, "On the feasts of the Lord and other important feasts", Syro Malabar rite


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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:02 pm 
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Jack3 wrote:
theJack wrote:
http://www.newadvent.org/summa/2085.htm

I think you're referring to "I answer that" of article 3. I don'tfully understand what it means.

Start with article 1. That humans are capable of reason isn't what is destroyed or even diminished by sin. However, as "man has from nature an inclination to virtue," and then so to does reason, and since this is diminished by sin, then our ability to reason properly is thereby diminished by sin. This is true of mankind generally, since "the gift of original justice, conferred on the whole of human nature in the person of the first man" has been "entirely destroyed through the sin of our first parent."

Now article 3: original justice meant "reason had perfect hold over the lower parts of the soul, while reason itself was perfected by God, and was subject to Him." That, as just noted, was lost due to original sin. Reason no longer has perfect hold over the lower parts of the soul and is no longer perfected by God. In and of itself, that diminishes our ability to reason properly, for we are now at war with ourselves, such that the flesh lusts against the spirit and the spirit against the flesh; or again, we find ourselves wanting to do what we do not and doing what we don't want to do; or still again we find ourselves tempted by our own desires. Not surprisingly, since we want these things that are not truly reasonable for us, we find ways to "justify" why we want them. The terrible irony is that we use reason against reason.

But still more, the soul's powers are "subject to virtue," and in the case of reason, that is seen as prudence. Now reason, unmoored from the True, being deprived of that order, finds "the wound of ignorance." I think that, tied in closely with what is said in article 1, is powerful. The basic thing sin does is disorder the person's soul, insofar as the powers of the soul, no longer being subjected to virtue, are no longer able to be truly and perfectly ordered as they are intended. But such disorder just manifests as sin. The reason "reasons" unreasonably. The will wills "willfully." The passions are no longer perfectly subject to reason but instead often subject reason to them. In short, we're all mixed up!

And if all that isn't bad enough, that's all just the result of original sin. This is all the more complicated by actual sin, for the more we sin, the more vicious we become. The more unmoored we become from the True, the more disordered we become, and thus, the less we can actually reason. In other words, the more you live in sin, the darker you intellect becomes. In a very real sense, the more you live in sin and reject truth, the harder it becomes to see truth and the easier it becomes to justify your lie and to act on it. We see this played out in Scripture and in ourselves. Pharaoh hardens his heart only after he asks, "Who is the Lord that I should obey Him?" (Ex 5:2) David doesn't kill Uriah so that he can have Bathsheeba. First he fails to be in his proper place at the head of the army; then he looks at the naked woman; then he allows his gaze to stay; then he inquires about who she is; then he sleeps with her; then he tries to cover it up by having Uriah think the child is his own; then he tries to cover it up by having him die in war. It's a progression, with each sin further darkening the intellect, making it ever harder for us to see the truth as it really is. All because the nature of the intellect is to perceive the good of what really is and what ought to be, but that is diminished when this power is no longer functioning with respect to what we fundamentally ought to be but rather in attempt to be what we want to be, regardless of what actually is.


edit:

Full disclosure particularly relevant for the Cath101 forum: I've actually not read any major commentators on this part of Aquinas. This is simply my interpretation of Aquinas on this part of his work, having read quite a bit of his work, and having some knowledge of his broader metaphysics. Others are, as always, more than welcome to offer correction or further nuance to these words or any others.

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Indeed, the Lord Jesus, when He prayed to the Father, "that all may be one. . . as we are one" (John 17:21-22) opened up vistas closed to human reason, for He implied a certain likeness between the union of the divine Persons, and the unity of God's sons in truth and charity. This likeness reveals that man, who is the only creature on earth which God willed for itself, cannot fully find himself except through a sincere gift of himself. ~ Pope Paul VI, Gaudium et Spes 24.3


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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:11 pm 
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Thank you.

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"May our tongues proclaim Your truth. May Your Cross be a protection for us as we let our tongues be turned into new harps and sing hymns with fiery lips"

-From the introduction to Our Father, "On the feasts of the Lord and other important feasts", Syro Malabar rite


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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:12 am 
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Jack3 wrote:
Doom wrote:
The classic example would be Bertrand Russell.
?


The classic example of a person with a darkened intellect due to sin.

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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:05 am 
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Figured out that much myself. I thought you'd give a brief explanation.

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"May our tongues proclaim Your truth. May Your Cross be a protection for us as we let our tongues be turned into new harps and sing hymns with fiery lips"

-From the introduction to Our Father, "On the feasts of the Lord and other important feasts", Syro Malabar rite


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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 11:40 am 
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Jack3 wrote:
Figured out that much myself. I thought you'd give a brief explanation.


Read this

https://users.drew.edu/jlenz/whynot.html

And tell me this isn't an example of a guy who has experienced a darkening of the intellect due to sin. To put it bluntly: Russell was too smart to be this stupid.

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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 2:07 pm 
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Doom wrote:
Jack3 wrote:
Figured out that much myself. I thought you'd give a brief explanation.


Read this

https://users.drew.edu/jlenz/whynot.html

And tell me this isn't an example of a guy who has experienced a darkening of the intellect due to sin. To put it bluntly: Russell was too smart to be this stupid.


And he had dental hygiene issues.

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Save that the sky grows darker yet
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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 3:23 pm 
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GKC wrote:
Doom wrote:
Jack3 wrote:
Figured out that much myself. I thought you'd give a brief explanation.


Read this

https://users.drew.edu/jlenz/whynot.html

And tell me this isn't an example of a guy who has experienced a darkening of the intellect due to sin. To put it bluntly: Russell was too smart to be this stupid.


And he had dental hygiene issues.


He had a lot of issues!

In some ways, he was a really weird guy, for example, he loved tea, but in his 98 years, he never learned how to make it, so he always had to have someone else to make it for him. Making tea doesn't sound like something difficult, but for Russell, it was an impossible task. Perhaps that kind of feebleness is the natural result of growing up wealthy with servants doing everything for you your whole life, but it still seems odd that such a smart guy was just absolutely incapable of understanding such a simple task. I was able to make tea on my own by at least age 10.

I'm not a fan of the ad hominem, but in the case of Russell, it seems almost impossible not to resort to it. He was married four times, and he cheated on all four of his wives, and all of his ex-wives, as well as all of his children and grandchildren, hated him so much that they refused to talk to him, and they actually got together and held a party to celebrate the news when they heard that he had died. Just how horrible a person must you be if none of your children or grandchildren are willing to even speak to you and they are actually happy when you die?

I once saw a documentary on the life of Bertrand Russell that focused on all the dirt, it was made around 1999 or 2000, and they interviewed all of his surviving children and grandchildren, this would have been recorded about 40 years after he died. And yet, all the people they interviewed were still angry over things that, at the time of the filming had happened as many as 70 or 80 years earlier and they all expressed an absolutely visceral hatred of him, a hatred that hadn't diminished in the slightest despite the passage of time as angry as they were, you would have thought they were describing things that had happened the day before yesterday. As I watched it, I was just absolutely stunned, I couldn't believe that so many people could be so angry, so bitter, so filled with absolute venom over things that had happened so long ago, things which stopped being relevant the moment he died.

It really takes a 'special' kind of person to inspire that much hatred from apparently just about every person who ever knew him. I mean, if I was just one person, I wouldn't think anything of it, some people are really good at holding a grudge, but there were at least a dozen people and the hatred they expressed was so intense that it is difficult to listen to their stories and not think that they were in the right.

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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2019 4:03 pm 
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Doom wrote:
GKC wrote:
Doom wrote:
Jack3 wrote:
Figured out that much myself. I thought you'd give a brief explanation.


Read this

https://users.drew.edu/jlenz/whynot.html

And tell me this isn't an example of a guy who has experienced a darkening of the intellect due to sin. To put it bluntly: Russell was too smart to be this stupid.


And he had dental hygiene issues.


He had a lot of issues!

In some ways, he was a really weird guy, for example, he loved tea, but in his 98 years, he never learned how to make it, so he always had to have someone else to make it for him. Making tea doesn't sound like something difficult, but for Russell, it was an impossible task. Perhaps that kind of feebleness is the natural result of growing up wealthy with servants doing everything for you your whole life, but it still seems odd that such a smart guy was just absolutely incapable of understanding such a simple task. I was able to make tea on my own by at least age 10.

I'm not a fan of the ad hominem, but in the case of Russell, it seems almost impossible not to resort to it. He was married four times, and he cheated on all four of his wives, and all of his ex-wives, as well as all of his children and grandchildren, hated him so much that they refused to talk to him, and they actually got together and held a party to celebrate the news when they heard that he had died. Just how horrible a person must you be if none of your children or grandchildren are willing to even speak to you and they are actually happy when you die?

I once saw a documentary on the life of Bertrand Russell that focused on all the dirt, it was made around 1999 or 2000, and they interviewed all of his surviving children and grandchildren, this would have been recorded about 40 years after he died. And yet, all the people they interviewed were still angry over things that, at the time of the filming had happened as many as 70 or 80 years earlier and they all expressed an absolutely visceral hatred of him, a hatred that hadn't diminished in the slightest despite the passage of time as angry as they were, you would have thought they were describing things that had happened the day before yesterday. As I watched it, I was just absolutely stunned, I couldn't believe that so many people could be so angry, so bitter, so filled with absolute venom over things that had happened so long ago, things which stopped being relevant the moment he died.

It really takes a 'special' kind of person to inspire that much hatred from apparently just about every person who ever knew him. I mean, if I was just one person, I wouldn't think anything of it, some people are really good at holding a grudge, but there were at least a dozen people and the hatred they expressed was so intense that it is difficult to listen to their stories and not think that they were in the right.


He had an eminent God-father.

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"I tell you naught for your comfort,
Yea, naught for your desire,
Save that the sky grows darker yet
And the sea rises higher."


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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2019 3:13 pm 
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Doom wrote:
I'm not a fan of the ad hominem, but in the case of Russell, it seems almost impossible not to resort to it. He was married four times, and he cheated on all four of his wives . . .

You'd think by the time he finished with the second the third and fourth would have looked the other way and ran. Fool me once and all.

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 Post subject: Re: Sin darkens the intellect
PostPosted: Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:16 am 
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